Crawford County, Pennsylvania

History & Biography

    SPARTA was formed in 1830.  It is the north-east corner township in the county, and contains 23,913 square acres.  It is well watered by the east branch of Oil Creek, which passes through the central part, and the north-west branch of Spring Creek and Spaulding and Brittain runs, tributary to it.  It has an important lumber manufacturing interest, its seven saw mills and three shingle mills having an aggregate capacity for cutting about 13,000.000 feet of lumber and 10,000,000 shingles per annum.  The Oil Creek & Allegheny Valley R.R. crosses the township along the valley of Oil Creek, and affords ample facilities for the transportation of the vast quantities of lumber manufactured here.
    The population in 1870 was 1,131, of whom 1,088 were native, 43, foreign and all, except three, white.
    During the year ending June 3, 1872, the township contained <p. 98> eight schools and employed thirteen teachers.  The number of scholars was 249; the average number attending school, 212; and the amount expended for school purposes, $2,688.54.
    SPARTANSBURG, (p.v.) situated on the east-branch of Oil Creek and the Oil Creek & Allegheny Valley R. R., a little north-east of the center of the township, is a thriving village of about 600 inhabitants.  It is rapidly improving, both in the number of buildings and inhabitants.  It contains two churches, two hotels, fourteen stores of various kinds, two carriage shops, a woolen mill, steam tannery, saw and planing mill and a cabinet shop.  The first store, (which is now occupied by Blackmer & Farley as a boot and shoe store,) was built in 1837, by Andrew and Aaron Akin, from whom the place was known as Akinsville, which name it retained until the establishment of the post office, when the present one was substituted.  It was incorporated as a borough in 1856.  Its population in 1870 was 457.

    Spartan Lodge No. 372 A. Y. M. was organized Jan. 2, 1867, and is in a prosperous condition. John G. Burlingham is W. M.

    BRITTAIN is a hamlet in the south-west part on Brittain Run.

    GLYNDON STATION is situated on the south line and on the O. C. & V. E. R. R.
    The settlement of this township was commenced at a comparatively recent date, by Reuben and Abraham Blakeslee, father and son, who came from Washington county, N. Y., to Meadville in 1817, and to Sparta, April 11th, 1818.  They located on the place now occupied by Abraham, who was sixty-two years old Jan. 4, 1872.  Reuben died July 20, 1848, aged sixty-two years, and his wife Prudence, died Feb. 8, 1851, at the same age.  Near the door of their residence stands an apple tree which is forty-five years old and measures seven and one-half feet in circumference.  David Blakeslee, who was born at New Haven, Conn., May 12, 1740, came in from Granville, N. Y., the same year, and settled upon a tract of 175 acres which he cleared and on which his son, Jesse A., who was then sixteen years old, is still living.

1 Hamilton Child, comp., Gazetteer and Business Directory of Crawford County, Pa., for 1874 (Syracuse, N.Y.: By the comp., 1874), pp. 97-98.