This township takes its name from
Brandywine, the principal stream in
the township. It was organized in 1828, and then consisted of the
entire central part of the county, what now constitutes the second
commissioner's district, to-wit: Brandywine, Center and Green
townships. In 1831, it was reduced in size to thirty sections, its
present length east and west and one mile greater north and south. This reduction was made by'
striking off Center and
Harrison townships. Center then consisting of eighteen sections and
Harrison of the remainder north. In 1835, Brandywine township was
further reduced in size one tier of sections, six miles long on the
north, which was added to Center. From 1835 to the present she has
It is located in the central southern part of the county, and is
bounded by Center township on the north, Blue river on the east,
Sugar creek on the west, and Shelby county on the south. In extent, it
is six miles east and west and four miles north and south, being the
smallest township in the county. It is all located in township fifteen
north and ranges six and seven east. Two tiers of sections on the
west are in range six, and four on the east are in range seven. The
range line dividing the two fractional congressional townships of
which Brandywine is composed, runs past J. G. Service's land, dividing
the farm of B. F. Wilson.
The principal streams are Brandywine and Little Sugar Creek. The former
enters the township on the north line, one and one half miles west of
the north-east corner, and flows south by south-west through the
township, passing out through section thirty two into Shelby county.
Little Sugar Creek is a small stream, which rises in the
southwestern part of Center township, enters Brandywine
township on the northern line, one mile east of the north-west
corner, and flows south four miles to within one mile of the southern
line; thence south-west, entering Shelby county at the south-west
corner of the township. Both of these streams are small and sluggish,
and not now considered available for water-power; hence this
township, unlike Blue river, Sugar creek, and others, intersected by
larger streams, has no water mills at present; yet, in the early
history of the county there were two small mills on Brandywine, one in
Harrison township and one in Brandywine.
The first grist-mill in Brandywine township was built by N. Swim in the
year 1826, and located on Brandywine Creek, in the central part of the
township. Swim afterwards attached a small saw-mill; but soon sold
out to Geo. Troxwell, who added a tiny bolt to run by hand. Troxwell
was a man of considerable enterprise. He carried on a hatter shop at
the mill, and also built a still house near by. The water some times
got too low to grind, when the people patronized a small horse-power
"coffee mill" on the Dickerson farm, then in Brandywine, now Center,
William Wilkins run a saw-mill in the south-east part of the township
for several years.
There is at present no flouring mill
in the township. There was one at
Carrollton run for a number of years, but recently moved away.
In 1856, H. and J. Comstock erected a steam saw-mill in Carrollton. It
was burned down a few years since, and was rebuilt by Wm.
Gordon. It is now owned and run by James Boyce.
Brandywine township was first settled in about 1820. Isaac Roberts and
family came in 1819. Prior to which then- were located: David
Stephenson, James Montgomery, and a Mr. Rambo. Soon afterward came
James McKinney. Jonathan Potts, James Montgomery. N. Swim, George
Troxwell, James Goodwin, J. H. Anderson, Robert and James Smith. Jacob
and Joseph Zumalt, and William Lucas. Among the oldest present
residents of the township are: Mrs. Isaac Roberts, J. P. Banks, John
Roberts, William Thomas, sen., Mrs. Andis, Richard Milburn. Wellington
Collier, and Alfred Potts.
This township is rather level, with portions undulating. no
swamps. The soil is good.
The township once abounded in tine timber in great quantities, similar
to that in adjoining townships. She has recently sold off her walnut
and large quantities of the oak.
Brandywine has fourteen miles of toll-pike and three miles of railroad.
The Cincinnati, Hamilton and Indianapolis cuts off the south-west
corner of the township.
The first school-teacher in the township was Abraham Vangilder.
The first birth was Mercer Roberts, daughter of Isaac Roberts.
The first burial in the township was Emily Roberts. The next, a child
of James Montgomery. The latter in 1824.
The first man married in the township was Zedric Stephens, who was
married in a shed covered with brush. The supper consisted of
spice wood tea, corn-bread, venison and hominy.
The first church house was built of logs and puncheons, by voluntary
labor, in 1830, on the farm of James Smith. It was burned down in 1858.
The first ministers were Hale, Horn, Vangilder, and a blind man by the
name of Hays.
Brandywine township has seven public school-houses, numbered and named
as follows, and at present supplied with eight teachers, whose names
are set opposite the respective numbers:
No. 1. .............. . Sugar Creek.....Allen Bottsford.
The estimated value of school-houses,
including seats and the grounds,
is $5,000; value of school apparatus, globes, maps, etc., $200; total
value of school property, in the judgment of the writer, $5,200. Total
number of school children, 416.
District No. 2................ ...
Cowden's...........John F. Peck.
District No. 3. ................
.Pleasant Hill.....Henry W. Buck.
District No. 4. ................ .
5........................ Scott's.............James White.
District No. 6......................
Lows'..............Chas. A. Reed.
District No. 7........Carrolton.. W.
H and Allie Glasscock
The population of the township in
1880 was 1,216; number of polls, 207.
The population in 1870 was 1,061
in 1860, 986
in 1850, 826.
The township is democratic by about
one hundred and forty majority. At
the presidential election for 1880, the vote stood as follows:
Democratic vote, 203 ; Republican VOte, 57 ; Greenback vote, 22 ; total
This township has 15,245 acres of
taxable land, valued at $351,940;
improvements valued at $41,370; value of li-ts, $1,116; improvements on
same, $3,245 ; value of personal property, $108,520; total value
of real and personal property, $506,235.
The township will pay, in 1882, for
this year's taxes, $5,717.85. The
following will show who pays $40.00 and upwards of this amount:
Andis. J. R
Banks, J. P
Hentley. T. E
Comstock, J. W
Comstock, Jas., heirs.
Low, Julia A.
Laribee, F. W.,
McDougall, D. and D.
| 47 55
Milborn, Leoniilas.. . .
Milborn, Win. A
Porter, W. H
Porter, J. W
Service, J. G.
Smith, T. L
Thomas, J. S
White, J. Q.
Wilson, W. F
Wilson. B. F
This township has one brass
There are three churches in the
township, one Christian, one Radicl
Methodist, and one United Brethren.
Carrollton, on the Junction R. R.,
is the only village :n the
township, a full description of which appears elsewhere.
Cowden's School-house, in the central
northern part, is the voting
Duncan McDoujfall, a
native Scotchman, a teacher, farmer,
tile manufacturer, democrat and a gentleman, is entrusted with the
school interests of the township, and the care of her poor in addition
to other minor matters.
B. F. Wilson and T. W. Laribee
preside over the scales of justice in
this township. The following are the ex-justices of the township, with
the date of election, since her organization, from the best information
|Orange H. Neff
|| Benjamin F.
|| Andrew J.
|| John Q.
The following are the township
trustees, with the date of their
election, from the time they were empowered with authority to levy
local taxes: William Service, the father of J. G. Service, was elected
in 1859, an(* served for ten years. Andrew Williamson was elected in
1869, and served his township faithfully till the election of his
successor. J. G. Service was elected in 1874, anc* continued till
the election of the present trustee.
William Wilkins, ex-county sheriff,
who died in office during his
second term, was from this township.
William Thomas, jun., ex-sheriff, and
James Tyner, ex-commissioner, are
both residents of the township.
It was here that Ezekial Wright, aged
twenty-five, and Thomas Hughes,
aged eighteen, were instantly killed by the falling of a tree, April
19, 1849. Mr. Wright's only daughter is now the wife of A. T. Brown.
In this township William Alyea was
killed by the falling of a
limb, in about the year i860.
Near Carrollton, a son of Henry
Carrington was killed by the cars soon
after the railroad first passed through the place.
The chief exports of the township are
corn, cattle, hogs, wheat,
horses, and flaxseed.
This little village is located in the
south-west part of the township,
on the C, H. and I. R. R., about seven miles south-west of Greenfield.
The railroad gave the station at this point the name of Reedville, but
the town has always borne the name above.
It was laid out by Hiram Comstock, on
the 25th of February, 1854, and
consisted of twenty five lots. The first and only addition ever made to
the town was by Rev. M. S. Ragsdale, in 1870.
It contains a school-house, one
church, one steam sawmill, two
merchants, one grain shipping firm, two blacksmiths, one
wagon maker, one physician, two carpenters, one painter, one
postmaster, one shoe-maker, and one barber.
It has a daily mail and United States
The present business men are :
Lucas & Son.
and Grain Dealers
Boring & Hutton.
Thomas Taylor, Emanuel Matillo.
James Peck, Wm. Thompson.
John D. Lucas.
Among the first business men of this
little burg were : John Elmore and
the firm of Andrews and Roseberry, merchants; Hiram Comstock and Warren
King, physicians ; Frank Lucas, blacksmith ; Martin Eakman,
wagon maker, and William Eskew, shoe maker. The first postmaster,
O. H. P. McDonald.