Auglaize County, Ohio

History and Genealogy

History of Auglaize County

Union Township

Union township, situated in the eastern part of the county, and bordering on Allen County, was organized in 1836. It has a more undulating surface than any other township in the county. The soil is of a mixed character, consisting of gravel, sand, and clay, and is splendidly adapted to cereal culture. Springs abound, and the whole section is well watered by living streams. Across the northwest corner flows the Auglaize River, while numerous smaller streams, among which are Blackhoof, Wrestle, Huffman, Virginia, and Wolf creeks, traverse its limits. A sufficient quantity of good gravel is found for road purposes.

The township has now two gravel pikes, and contemplates the construction of others the approaching season. It has two villages, Uniopolis and St. Johns; the former an enterprising little town near the west line, and the latter on the south line. It was settled principally by settlers from Virginia and Southern Ohio, and the lands are still largely occupied by the original occupants and their immediate descendants. The first piece of land entered within the township was entered in Sec. 3, by Jacobs.

The elections for a number of years were held at the house of Joseph Lusk, at the first of which between twenty and thirty votes were cast. The first board of trustees consisted of John Schooler, John Carder, and ——. John Balzell was clerk at this time. The first justice of the peace was John Morris. During the first fifteen years the officers received no compensation for their services. The township was first organized into four school districts, and a cabin was built in each for school purposes. This transpired about 1840. The first church was a log house, known as Wesley Chapel, erected about 1842, but which has been superseded by another building bearing the same name, and occupying the old site. James Lusk, at the age of twenty-one, accompanied his father, Charles Lusk, to this county in 1832, and is, perhaps, the oldest resident in the township. During the first year he occupied and cultivated a piece of land which is now a portion of the site of St. Johns. We would thus probably be correct in claiming him to be the first white settler of the soil in this township, as the land had been cleared about St. Johns by the Indians.

The first school was taught, about 1836, by R. C. Layton.

The following is a list of the first settlers with the year of their arrival appended:—

Wm. Richardson, Byrd Richardson, John Lusk, John Corder, Charles Lusk, and James C. Lusk in 1832. Lemuel Bacome, Wm. Patterson, John Morris, John Hoffman, James Watt, and Wm. Graham in 1833. Jolm A. Speece, Benj. Lusk, Allen Justice, John Carter, Aaron Howell, M. Hodges, John Jacobs, John Schooler, and Lewis Y. Perkins in 1834. Moses Porter, Jonathan Stiles, and Levi Harrod in 1835. Levi Mix, John McCormic, Adam Focht, Abner Copeland, H. F. Rinehart, John Harden, and John B. Walton in 1836.

Uniopolis is the only village wholly within the township, and is situated in Sec. 17, on the Wapakoneta and Waynesfield gravel road, six miles east of Wapakoneta. It is a pleasant little village of about two hundred inhabitants, and contains two stores of general merchandise, one school-house, one grocery store, one steam saw mill, one hotel, and two churches.

From "History of Auglaize County, Ohio, with the Indian History of Wapakoneta, and the First Settlement of the County", Robert Sutton, Publishers, Wapakoneta, 1880