BROWN COUNTY INDIANA
JOHNSON TOWNSHIP


THE  SURFACE AND  SOIL

    This  is the smallest subdivision of Brown County. It comprises  forty eight sections in the southwestern part. The entire township, except about two sections in the northeast corner, lies within the Harri­son's Purchase, obtained from the Indians by the treaty of Fort Wayne in 1809. It is drained wholly by the Middle Fork of Salt Creek and its branches, Little Blue, Crooked, Grave and smaller creeks. On the northern boundary is High Ridge. The creek flows westwardly through the southern part, and its principal branches rise in High Ridge and flow southwardly. In this township considerable sandstone is found upon the surface, lying scattered on the hillsides in great cubic or columnar form, and often presenting red furruginous or gray alluininous colors. The sandstone below this is often shaly, and disintegrates easily upon exposure. Much iron pyrites is found. The bottoms about Elkinsville are rich and productive with the wealth of the lacustral silt deposited by torrents down the hillsides.
 The geologic formation in a well at Elkins­ville is as follows :
Alluvial soil     4 feet.
Dark quicksand     7 feet.
Black and  blue lacustral clay and silt,
including wood and vegetable remains     9 feet.
Total    20 feet.
    On the knob on Section 10 may be seen a few scattered fragments of Keokuk limestone which once covered the region, but which has since been washed away. They contain crushed specimens of zophrentis archimedes, and other bryozoans and crinoids. Excellent sandstone of the Knobstone beds is also found here in abundance. The water in past ages has washed out this stone and dressed it into cubes three and four feet through, and pillars three by four and twenty feet long. The soil is yet heavily timbered, though the best has been culled out for staves and other lumber. For a number of years the ax has been turned upon the numberless hickory saplings, hundreds of loads of which are annually sold for barrel hoops. Traces of gold have been discovered. Sulphuret of iron has animated the hopes of many a resident and seeker after sudden wealth.

THE  ERA  OF  SETTLEMENT

    It is said that William Elkins was a resident of Johnson Township as early as 1819. One thing is certain, he was in the township to live before the Indians were removed, which was done in 182 L. Some state that his residence in the county dates further back than that, back to 1816 or 1817. It is told that he came directly from the block-house, which had been built in Lawrence County as a protection from the Indians during the war of 1812-15. That statement is currently made and believed, and if true, would fix the date of his settlement at about the year 1816, and certainly not later than 1817. Some state that he was the first white man to live with his family in what is now Brown County. Others state that old man Schoonover, who located on the creek which bears his name (corrupted), in the western part of Washington Township, was the first in the county. The truth cannot be learned. It is certain that both were in before 1820, and very likely by 1817. Old David Johnson was another very early resident of the township. The' date of his settlement cannot be given. It should be remembered that the territory comprising Johnson Township (except a small portion of the northeastern corner), was obtained by cession treaty from the Indians in 1809, and that the old boundary line, which crosses the northeastern corner, was established at that date. The land was surveyed south of this line in 1812, and soon afterward was open to settlement. No settlers appeared except Elkins, and perhaps Johnson, until after 1820. Then a few families arrived, but no extensive settlement occurred until the decade of the thirties
.
LAND   ENTRIES

Township 7 north, Range 1 east,
Section 1—Nelson Roberton, 1843; James Todd, 1844;
Section 12—Hiram Butcher, 1844; John Griner, 1844;
Township 7 north, Range 2 east,
Section 2—David John­son, 1834; Adam Fleetwood, 1833; Thomas Fleetwood, 1833; Henry Combs, 1837 ;
Section 3—J. H. Alexander, 1843 ; David Sively, 1844 ; Isaac Fleetwood, 1844;
Section 4—Adam Fleetwood, 1834 ; G. W. Starnes, 1844 ; Isaac Fleetwood, 1844;
Section 5—D. M. Martin, 1839; Charles Holland, 1844 ;
Section 6—William Burroughs, 1833; Arnold Helton, 1844; George Butcher, 1843 ;
Section 7—David Sively, 1833 ; William Mitchell, 1844;
Section 8—Albert L. Gilstrap, 1834; Andrew Helton, 1839 ; Henry Clark, 1841;
Section 9—Jerry Terrell, 1844; Henry Clark, 1841;
Section 10—Jacob Fleener, 1843 ; George Lutes, 1843; Jacob Fleener, 1843 ;
Township 8 north, Range 2 east,
Section 22 —John Huffman, 1838:
Section 25—William Stogdill, 1837; Zachariah Pauley, 1844 ;
Section 32—Isaac Hall, 1843;
Section 33—Solomon Fleetwood, 1833; J. S. Arwine, 1844 ;
Section 35—Jerry Brannon, 1837 ;
Section 36—A. T. Hazzard. 1837 ; Richard Elkins, 1844; Wil­liam Elkins, 1834
.
POLL-TAX PAYERS OF 1848

    James Arwine, John S. Arwine, George Butcher, "W. M. Crusenberry, "James Chafin, Hezekiah Deckard, Nathan Davis, Joseph Elkins, Richard Elkins, Reuben Enes, James Fleetwood, Solomon Fleetwood, Samuel Fowler, Shadrack Fleetwood, Isaac Fleetwood, John Grimes, William Helton, Joseph Hedrick, Stephen Harper, John Hatchet, A. D. Hoag, Isaac Hall, Jacob Lutes, Amos Lawson, Thomas Lucas, William Mitchell, Nicholas Martin, Jackson Messer, Zachariah Polly, Lincoln Polly, James Polly, Thomas Polly, Asa Reeves, Alexander Ryans, Alfred Ramsey, William See, Enoch Sexton, Hiram Shipley, William Sullivan, Jonathan Sherrel, John Shipley, Ezekial Sullivan, John Scott, Jesse Shipley, Arthur Sutphin, Jeremiah Terrel, James Wilkenson, Hammond Wilkenson and Bird Wilson. The heaviest tax payers were Andrew Helton, $6.49; Lutes et at, $3.30; William Mitchell, $3.18; and Alfred Ramsey, $3.13.

Return To The Main Index Page For Brown County