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Dagsborough Hundred, Sussex County Delaware

Early Settlements The Houston family Dagsborough Families
Saw and Grist-Mills Churches Schools
Millsborough Frankford Village Dagsborough Village

The greater part of this hundred was in the territory claimed by Maryland, and under the jurisdiction of that state until 1763. In that year the first survey line was defined between Maryland and Delaware, and confirmed by Mason and Dixon, in 1765, receiving official confirmation from Penn and Baltimore in 1776. It is not known that any of the lands in the middle and northern part (except along the Indian River in Pine Neck and above) were granted by Penn Several tracts in that locality were taken up previously to 1700, from which year until 1765, warrants were granted by the Proprietary of Maryland.

The southern portion of the hundred is covered with pine, cedar and oak forests, which have for major years given to the people employment in the burning of charcoal, and the manufacture of lumber and shingles. The cypress swamps, of which there are many acres, contain trunks of buried cypress, which are being raised from the beds and made into shingles.

Early Settlements

The territory of Dagsborough Hundred was within the limits of Penn's purchase from the Duke of York, in August 1681, which extended south to Cape Henlopen, now the eastern terminus of division line between Delaware and Maryland and from thence extending due west. This was disputed by Lord Baltimore, who claimed north as far as Indian River. But few tracts were granted by Penn in the limits of this hundred and those along Indian River. One of which was to Peter Waples, who in 1692, bought several tracts of land at Warwick, in Indian River Hundred, and a tract opposite in Dagsborough. In September of 1692, he asked permission of the Whorekill Court, to establish a ferry across the Indian River from his house "for ye mutual commodacon correspondency of the Inhabitants of the county with those of the province of Maryland," and desired that he alone might keep the same, which was granted. Lewes at that time was the principal settlement and Lord Baltimore had been so strenuous in his demands, that the territory claimed by him was given under his jurisdiction until a final settlement was made and which was not fully concluded until 1775. Lands within the territory in dispute were granted by him, and on the 2nd of July, 1713, a large quantity was granted "to certain Indians and their heirs as long as they should think fit to reside thereon." In spite of this condition the Indians by Wecomiconus the Queen, Tonquaton, Knuconum and Robin the interpreter on the 15th of November, 1786, sold two hundred acres of the land to William Burton, and in May 22, 1741, sold two hundred more to Joshua Burton. This land with others purchased was on Pine Neck, along Indian River to Fishing Creek above Millsborough. William Burton, was a purchaser of large tracts of land in Long Neck, Indian River Hundred, in 1677, and about 1700 purchased lands in this territory, and about 1710 his son, Woolsey Burton, removed to the place where he died in 1750. He was buried on the John M. Houston farm where a slab marks his resting place. He left a son, Woolsey, from whom Benjamin Burton of Georgetown, and many others descended.

Many tracts of land were granted in small quantities by the Proprietors of Maryland to settlers who in most cases did not long remain. John Dagworthy, from whom the hundred takes its name, was distinguished in French and Indian Wars and the Revolution, and by reason of his services for Maryland, was granted a large tract of land in Maryland, but which in the final settlement was decided to be in Delaware. Gen. John Dagworthy was a native of New Jersey, and came into prominence in his native state before coming to Maryland.

A memorandum sent to the Duke of New Castle June 2, 1732, in relation to separate government in New Jersey, contains the following: "John Dag-worthy, he is an honest, bold man, well affected to the government; is of the church of England; a thriving man and at present high sheriff of the county in which he resides." On February 2, 1747, he was again recommended to the Duke of New Castle and was mentioned as Captain John Dagworthy having in command a company of eighty-five active men; his services were engaged, for a short period, in Canada, from whence he returned to New Jersey. About 1754 he went to Maryland and served in the French and Indian War under Braddock, sharing in the latter's defeat; for his services he was given a large tract of land in Worcester County, Maryland, lying at the head of Pepper's Creek, which, later, was declared to be Sussex County, Delaware. A tract called "Cypress Swamp," containing three hundred and eighty acres, which had been warranted to John Hance was assigned to him. The following tracts were also granted to him in 1758: "Archibald's Discovery," two hundred and seventy acres; June 27, 1759, "Pleasant Grove," sixteen hundred acres; "Wilderness," eight thousand three hundred and eighty acres; "Mill Land," ten hundred and thirty-three acres; " Saw Mill Supply," one hundred and twenty-five acres; and in 1760 "Timber Land Enlarged," containing one thousand seven hundred and sixty acres. In 1774 all of these tracts were re-surveyed to him under Penn and called "Dagworthy's Conquest," containing in the aggregate twenty thousand three hundred and ninety-three acres and reaching to Broad Creek Hundred. General Dagworthy, about this time, built a capacious one story house upon an eminence at the east end of the town near Frank ford. The approach was a broad avenue lined with trees. There surrounded by his family and a retinue of slaves he dispensed a liberal hospitality. The house was destroyed by fire a number of years ago. The following extract from the Sussex Journal serves to record his services in the Revolutionary War:

"In 1776, in the month of May, 271 quarter-barrels of powder belonging to Maryland, arrived in Indian River, and were taken in charge of by Colonel John Dagworthy, to be sent to Chestertown, Maryland, by land. There were also two brass blunderbusses, 12 swords, and 70 pounds of musket-balls.

"In July, 1776, John Dagworthy, magistrate of Sussex, received depositions regarding hostile acts of the Delaware Tories who communicated with Lord Dunmore's fleet at the month ef the Nanticoke River." We look upon them as a more dangerous enemy than the Europeans,' said the report; "they know our country and are able to carry the vessels they command to the heads of our rivers." The patriots add, "There are at heart six disaffected here to one firm man for America."

"In 1777, Thomas McKean wrote to George Read, saying: "We made a promotion in the militia, by making Mr. Rodney Major General and Messrs. Dagworthy, Dickinson and Patterson brigadiers. By letter I spirited up General Dagworthy." William Kellen wrote about this time: "There have been about forty persons, men and women, apprehended in the head of Sussex, Etc., on suspicion of trading with the British men-of-war."

"Samuel Patterson wrote Perth Perth Amboy to George Read, Oct. 9th, 1776: "George Parris, our acting quarter-master, was adjutant in Sussex to General Dagworthy's battalion."

He resided in Dagsborough until his death, and was buried under the chancel of Prince George's chapel, where his remains now lie. His daughter, Rachel, married William Hill Wells, an attorney, who spent part of his time at the Dagworthy mansion, and who came into the possession of the estate. He died in 1829, leaving four sons and a daughter: Dagworthy, Henry, Edward, Alfred and Rachel, who became the wife of William D. Waples. The latter bought the estate, and resided there. The sons of William Hill Wells all studied law, and were ad-mitted to practice, but, with the exception of Alfred, the youngest, did not follow the profession any length of time. He went to Ithaca, N. Y., where he followed his profession until his death, serving as judge of the county and as a member of Congress for the Twenty-sixth District. Henry Dagworthy was Secretary of State under Governor Hazlett, but at his death resided in Philadelphia. Edward Lloyd Wells was register of the Court of Chancery for several years, resided in Georgetown, and finally settled in Washington, where he died.

The Houston family, so long residents of this hundred, were first represented by Robert Houston, who in September, 1754, took up two hundred acres called "Houston's Folly," which lay on the south side of Indian Town Branch (now Yellow Branch). In addition to this, he purchased one hundred acres, adjoining which had been a tract surveyed to Ezekiel Walton. These lands, after the settlement of the division line of Delaware and Maryland, were resurveyed to Robert Houston, Sr. They afterwards passed to R. Houston, Jr., and from him to his son, Robert B. Houston, who is now living in his eighty-fifth year, and who is the father of John M. Houston, ex-State Treasurer and ex-Senator.

Joseph Houston, a brother of Robert Houston, Jr., purchased of David Moore, February 6, 1785, one hundred acres, part of "Lane's Adventure," which was a Maryland warrant granted to Hinman Wharton, whose sons in 1772 sold to David Moore. Two days later, February 7, 1785, Joseph Houston purchased two hundred acres of land adjoining, also on the south side of Indian River, within a half mile of Dagsborough Town. This land was bought of Nehemiah Tunnell, who received it by will from his father, William Tunnell.

The original homestead of the Houstons has been in possession of the family from its purchase in 1754. The Burtons who were early residents in Dagsborough Hundred, will be found mentioned in Indian River where they first settled.

It is impossible to follow the numerous families who were early settlers in the hundred, but the following list of taxables made in the year 1785, shows clearly who were residents of the hundred at that time, but it should be born in mind that the Cypress Swamps, in the south part of the hundred, now in Gumborough, were part of the territory but were very sparely settled.

Dagsborough Families

Amos, John
Anderson, Jesse.
Aydelott, Isaac.
Barns, George.
Barton, Wm.
Baylis, James.
Betta, Jonathan.
Bivens, Widow.
Bothims Joseph.
Brookfield, Azariah.
Brookfield, Uriah.
Burton, Jacob.
Burton, Woolsey.
Butcher, Robert.
Cottingham, Elisha.
Cade, Thomas.
Cordery, Jacob.
Cottingham, Wm.
Chamberlain, James.
Carey, Solomon.
Carey, Ebenezer.
Collins, Elijah.
Collins, Eli.
Carey, Elijah.
Dagworthy, Gen. John.
Danby, John.
Daugherty, Benjamin.
Daughters, Thomas.
Day, Anguish.
Derrickson, Benjamin.
Derrickson, John.
Derrickson, Joseph.
Derrickson, Wm.
Dingle, Dr. Edward.
Dingle, Wm.
Evans, Caleb.
Evans, John.
Evans, Walter.
Evans, Wm.
Evans, Joshua.
Ellingsworth, Brotherer.
Ellingsworth, Robert.
Ellingsworth, Richard.
Forgus, Michael.
Freeman, Michael
Fuller, John.
Gibbons, John.
Girlie, Wm.
Gray, Waseheat.
Gosler, Job.
Heuston, Robert,
Hewitt, Wm.
Homer, George.
Hopkins, George.
Hopkins, Robert.
Hopkins. Wm.
Houston, Joseph.
Howell, John.
Hudson, Thomas.
Hull, Wm.
Hutchinson, Archibald.
Ingram, Job.
Ingram, Jacob.
Ingram, Joshua.
Ingram, Robert.
Jacob, Jonathan.
Jacobs, Abraham.
Jefferson, Elihu.
Jefferson, Job.
Jefferson, John.
Jefferson, Widow.
Johnson, Bartholomew.
Johnson, Bat.
Johnson, Benjamin.
Johnson, John.
Jones, Ebenezer.
Jones, Martha.
Jones, Thomas.
Jones, Wingate.
Jones, Zachariah.
Kellum, Jesse.
Kellum, Thomas.
Kellum, Wm.
Kinney, Saunders.
Kollock. Simeon.
Lacy, Collins.
Layton, Eli.
Layton, John.
Lockwood, Armwell.
Lockwood, Benjamin.
Lockwood, Samuel.
Long, Armwell
Long, David.
Long, David.
Long, John.
Mara, Ezekiel.
Marvel, David.
Marvel, Robert.
Marvel, Thomas.
Marvel. Philip.
Marvil, Thomas.
Maxfield, Nimrod.
Messick, Benjamin.
Messick, George.
Messick, Isaac.
Messick, Minors.
Mills, Jonathan.
Mitchell, George.
Mitchell, Wm.
Moore, David.
Moore, Isaac.
Moore, Wm.
Morris, Bevins.
Morris, John.
Morris, Joseph.
Morris, Joshua.
Morris, Lacy.
Morris, Robert
Morris, Wm.
Mosely, John.
Nettingham, Jonathan.
Newbold, Margaret
Newbold, Wm.
Newton, Wm.
Nicholson, John.
Odwell, Wm.
Parsons, Robert.
Parsons, Robert.
Pepper, John.
Philips, Ebenezer.
Philips, John.
Philips. Benj.
Piper, Joseph.
Potter, David.
Potter, James
Potter, Nehemiah.
Powell, Levi.
Powell, Wm.
Prettyman, George.
Prettyman, Joseph.
Prettyman, Robert.
Prettyman, Thomas.
Prettyman, Wm.
Ratten, Josiah.
Rawlins, Charles.
Robertson, Joseph.
Robinson, Joseph.
Robinson, Joshua.
Rodger, John.
Rodney, Wm.
Rowan, Thomas.
Rowls, Samuel
Russell, Wm.
Salmon, Aydelot.
Salmon, Benj.
Salmon, Wm.
Schofield, Widow Ann.
Schofield, Wm.
Scudder, Enoch.
Sharp Wm.
Short, Edward.
Short, Elisabeth.
Short, Jacob.
Short, Jacob.
Short, Philip.
Short, Samuel
Sockam, James.
Sockam, Widow.
Starr, Jacob.
Tall, Richard.
Tharp, John.
Thompson, James.
Thompson, Smith.
Thompson, Wm.
Thoroughgood, John.
Thoroughgood, Miller.
Thoroughgood, Paul
Thoroughgood, Wm.
Tingle, Calab.
Tingle, John.
Tingle, John.
Tingle, Wm.
Veasy, Chas.
Veasy, Zadock.
Walker, John.
Waples, Elihu.
Waples, Elizabeth.
Waples, Mary.
Waples, Paul
Waples, Peter.
Waples, Wm.
Waples, Wm.
Watson, Pater.
Watson, Smithers.
Weathers, Issac.
West, John.
West, Robert
West, Thomas.
Wharton, Elizabeth.
Wharton, George.
Wharton, Winman.
Wharton, Wrixham.
Willy, Thomas
Wingate, John.

The extensive cypress swamps of this hundred have been from the earliest settlements a source of profit to the settlers; the Indian River, which is on its northern border, and is navigable, furnishes a means of transportation. Many saw-mills have been erected upon the Indian River and its tributaries, which have been in almost constant operation. There are also many acres of buried cypresses whose trunks have been raised and manufactured into shingles, which were used to cover not only the roofs but the sides of the houses in this section of the country.

Many fires have raged through the swamps, extend-ing in some cases to the depth of two and three feet beneath the surface.

The earliest fire within the memory of any living was in 1817, when an area of about ten thousand acres was burned over in Worcester County, Baltimore, Dagsborough and Gumborough Hundreds.

The roads through these swamps are built of cypress, cedar and pine branches, which are laid crosswise at a depth of two or three feet, and make a foundation for good roads.

Saw and Grist-Mills

In 1773 Benjamin Burton, Sr., had two acres of land condemned on both sides of Fishing Creek (the first stream above Millsboro') for the use of a grist-mill. In 1848 it was owned by Benjamin Burton, of (Georgetown, and Miers Burton. The latter dying shortly after, his interests passed to his son. The property is now owned by Burton & Betts.

A grist-mill was operated in 1798 by John Engle. It was sold to James Anderson, and abandoned by him in 1847.

General Dagworthy owned a grist-mill in 1800, which was in operation until 1847. It was situated at Dagsborough Bridge, near the State road.

In 1804 an act was passed enabling Benjamin Burton and Isaiah Wharton to erect a dam on Duck Creek (now Wharton's Creek), for use of a grist-mill, which has entirely disappeared.

In 1800 Colonel W. D. Waples owned a grist and saw-mill, located on "Bell Flower Stream." It is yet in operation, having been rebuilt in 1850 by Benjamin Jones.

Joseph Marvel operated a saw-mill in 1816, located on Sabrey Branch, about a half-mile from Stockley. It was rebuilt in 1840 by John P. Marvel, and abandoned in 1882.

About the same time Simon Kollock owned a grist-mill, which he sold to Dr. Simon Wilson, who rebuilt it about 1850. It stands on Kollock's mill-dam, and is now in operation.

In 1816 Samuel Lockwood operated a grist and saw-mill, located on Lockwood's mill-dam. It passed to William Lockwood, who ran it until 1837.

The following persons operated grist and saw-mills in 1816: W. H. Wells, Mary Vickers, Perry Pool, Joseph Morris, John Morris, Joshua Ingram, Charles M. Cullin, Woolsey Burton and Purnell Short.

In 1817 Aaron Marvel established a tannery on the road from Millsborough to Pine Grove, which was abandoned in 1837, and is now called Mar veil's Old Tan yard. In 1875 Notten Marvel established a tan-yard near Pine Grove, which he still runs.

On the road laid out in 1812 from Georgetown to Pool's Mill are the nurseries of Ransford S. Johnson, which were established in 1869. In that year he came from Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania, and purchased a tract of land, the area of which was subsequently increased to four hundred acres. Much of this has been brought under a high state of cultivation, and the portion set aside for nursery purposes embraced thirty acres in 1887. Although making a specialty of peach culture, many valuable species of pears, quinces and small fruits are propagated and find ready sale at home and abroad. The stock is shipped to many remote points in the South and the West, and has given the nursery an excellent reputation.

Churches

Prince George's Chapel, Protestant Episcopal

The exact date of the erection of this chapel cannot be determined, there being no record extant of its organization. It was built under the charge of St. Martin's Parish, at Snow Hill, Maryland. The Rev. Mr. Ross mentions, in his journal dated Lewes, August 6, 1717, that "there were two houses of worship in the vicinity, one sixteen miles from Lewes, and one in the upper part of the county not yet finished." The last mentioned was St. Matthew's in Cedar Creek Hundred. The former was probably Prince George's, as it approximates that distance, St. George's Chapel, in Indian River Hundred, being but eight miles from Lewes, and always considered as under the charge of St. Peter's Church of that place, and was not at that time built.

The history of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts mentions the visit of Rev. George Ross to this section of country in August, 1717, and says he set out from Lewes "to a place of worship about sixteen miles from Lewes. It is a small frame building erected by a few well-disposed persons in order to meet together to worship God; "and further that Mr. Ross baptized twenty-five children and several grown persons.

The building was originally a frame structure and has been added to and repaired as occasion required. Samuel Derrickson, a member of this chapel, represented the diocese in the Episcopal Convention which met at Dover in 1771. General John Dagworthy enlarged the chapel by the addition of a transept. The Bible used in the early days of the chapel is in possession of Mrs. Hickman, who lives with her son Peter, at Baltimore Mills. It was published in London by Thomas Baskett in 1750, and is covered with tapestry which is almost worn off with use. The chapel is now only treasured as a relic to mark the efforts of those pioneers who associated the Christian cause with their own fortunes. The congregations for several years have worshipped in a neat sanctuary which now stands near Lamb's Woods.

Dagsborough Chapel, Methodist Episcopal

Dagsborough Chapel, Methodist Episcopal was erected in 1882, when the following were the trustees, viz., Elisha W. Carran, Benjamin Wingate, Wilson Campbell, Benjamin Warrington and F. B. Biggins. It has fifty members.

Pine Grove Chapel, Methodist Protestant

Pine Grove Chapel, Methodist Protestant was built in 1886, on land donated by Harrison Rogers, and dedicated by Jacob Nicholson. The trustees were Harrison Rogers, John P. Ennis and William Rodney.

Houston Mission, at Hickory Hill

Houston Mission, at Hickory Hill, was erected in 1887, with thirty members, including the trustees, John M. Houston, Sheppard Kollock and James Williams. It is on the Frankford Circuit, and has sixty members.

On the 10th of April, 1819, Joshua Robinson sold to Arthur Williams, David Hazzard, Stephen Ellis, John Hazzard and Perry Pool seventy-eight square perches of land on which to erect a Methodist meeting-house. The locality of this house was not ascertained.

Schools

About 1780 a Mr. Rollins taught school in the hundred. In 1778 Major Benson, a surveyor, taught in an old log house which stood on the farm of Shadrach Short. Between 1800 and 1813 there were three teachers who held school in old houses, the sessions lasting in the short days of the season, from sunrise to sunset. Their names were Job Runnels, Henry Runnels and Thomas Marvel. The names of a few who have since taught are James Dickerson, David Vance, Joseph Kollock, Houston Hall, Henry Brill, Edward Denny, John Jones, Samuel Vaughn, Dr. James Hudson, James Johnson, William Casque, Geo. Hilderbrand, Daniel Drain (a Revolutionary soldier, who is said to have taught sixty years).

The Lamb School-House, as it is called, was built about 1885, and is now used both as school-house and chapel for the members of Prince George Chapel.

The hundred at present contains fourteen districts and parts of districts which have accommodations for four hundred scholars.

Millsborough

Millsborough lies partly in this hundred and partly in Indian River Hundred. The original name in the latter place was Rock Hole, which, by an act of the Legislature, passed January 30, 1809, was changed to Millsborough. That part in Dagsborough was called Washington. After the removal of the post-office from Indian River to the latter place in 1837 both sides received the name of Millsborough.

Its site is a portion of the land originally purchased of the Indians by William Burton. In 1792 an act was passed enabling Elisha Dickinson "to erect a mill-dam across the head-waters of Indian River near the place called Rock Hole in Indian River Hundred, and for the condemnation of a small piece of land on the south side of the river for use of grist-mill and log-yard." The mill in 1816 was operated by Charles M. Cullin, who married the widow of Elisha Dickinson. It had several owners, but is now abandoned.

Millsborough Furnace

Several large furnaces were in operation in Sussex County before the Revolution, and had gone down, and several forges were in operation in the western part of the county before the War of 1812. About 1815 a stock company was organized at Millsborough, consisting of Col. William D. Waples, Robinson Waples and others, for the purpose of manufacturing iron. They erected a small charcoal furnace near Indian River, at Millsborough, and put it in blast. It was under their management until 1822, when Samuel G. Wright, an iron master of Monmouth County, New Jersey, purchased the plant and also bought land and ore rights on the Nanticoke and its tributaries, which formerly belong to the Deep Creek and Pine Grove Furnaces. The furnace was placed in charge of Derrick Barnard.

About 1825 Wright erected, near the furnace, a foundry. In the years 1828-29-30 there was produced at the furnace and foundry 450 tons of pig iron and 350 tons of castings. In 1832 Gardner H. Wright, son of Samuel G., became interested in the property and managed it until 1886, when the furnace was abandoned. The foundry was continued until 1879, being used in later years mostly for the manufacture of plows. In that year the molds and patterns were sold, and taken to Georgetown, where they are still used in a foundry. When the furnace and foundry were both in operation the water-pipes for the Croton Water Works, New York, the railings formerly around Independence Square and castings for the Eastern Penitentiary, Philadelphia, were cast at this place. Millsborough, in the days of the furnace, was of more importance than Georgetown. It was the head of navigation and was the terminus of a stage-route in charge of Col. Waples, who had their stables accommodating between fifty and sixty horses. In 1816 he owned a tan-yard, granary, store-house and other buildings. Col. Waples erected the tannery previous to that year, and, having continued the business until 1 845, sold it to Daniel and David Burton. About 1855 Benjamin Burton operated it, being succeeded by John Burton, who, in 1865, abandoned the place.

The first store was established here by John Lacy in 1811. The original house is now occupied by Jeannette Burton. He was followed by James West Benjamin Whadems kept store for a number of years at "Whadems' Wharf," which is now gone down. The storekeepers during the years 1834-37 were Noble T Jerman, Hitch & Giles and others.

Millsborough Box Factory was established by Perry, Houston & Co. in 1882. Ten thousand feet of lumber is sawed daily and used in the box-factory.

A drug-store was opened in 1886 by Dr. John W. Fooks.

The post-office was moved from the other side of the river in 1837. The postmasters since that time have been Gardner H. Wright, John West, Anthony Hastings, Purnell Pettyjohn, John Benson, John Cardrey, Dr. George Burton, William H. Betts, Ashur Burton and Edward Burton, the present incumbent.

St. Mark's Protestant Episcopal Church at Hillsborough, built in 1849, on land donated by M. S. Burton, is a branch of the chapel at Dagsborough. The trustees at the time of its erection were M. E. Burton, Benjamin Burton, Gardner H. Wright, Woolsey Burton, Asahel Dodd and Joseph Kollock. The following pastors have occupied the pulpit: Revs. William Wright, Geo. Hall, Samuel Rambo and W. R. Ellis. The latter having preached for twenty years, died in March, 1887.

Millsborough Methodist Episcopal Church was built in 1874, and dedicated August 18th the same year by Rev. Anthony Atwood. The trustees were Richard F. Hastings. Noble Jerman, James Baker, Anthony G. Hasting. Services previous to the erection of the present chapel were held in the old school-house, which now stands back of Millsborough.

Frankford

Frankford Village (formerly Gum's store) is located at the edge of the hundred, on part of ''Dagworthy's Conquest." The first business place was a store opened in 1808 by Isaiah Long, who was succeeded by Manaen Gum. The latter occupied it for thirty-three years, and was followed by George Long. It was torn down in 1848 and replaced the same year.

The poet-office was established in 1848, and has been kept since by Manaen Gum, John Long, Edward Kirkpatrick, John Lay ton and Edward Collins.

A hotel was established about 1860 by William Halloway. The present one is kept by L. W. Cannon.

The Methodist Church was built in 1852, and the Presbyterian Church in 1881; the former is on Frankford circuit and the latter is in charge of the ministers of Blackwater Church.

The most extensive business ever conducted in Frankford was established by Charles H. Treat, who in 1877 leased the old Gum Mill, and began the manufacture of patent barrels, which he continued for eighteen months. After numerous experiments with native woods for veneering purposes, he decided to embark largely in that direction, and with James M. and Norman B. Huxford, under the name of Huxford & Company, built extensive works, well fitted with steam and machinery for making veneers, plaques and boxes. The works were continued until 1883, when they were removed to Georgetown.

Frankford has at present five stores, kept by John T. Long, Everett Hickman, John Steel, Edward Collins and Lay ton & Bro.; one hotel kept by L. W. Cannon; one physician, Dr. Francis M. Gum.

Dagsborough Village

Dagsborough Village is located on that part of "Dagworthy's Conquest" taken up by General John Dagworthy, from whom it derived its name. In deeds recorded previous to 1785, it is mentioned "as the place formerly called Blackfoot town, but now Dagsbury."

One of the first industries established in Dagsborough was the tannery, which was built by James Clayton, prior to 1796. It was at this place (the old house is torn down) that the Hon. John M. Clayton was born and passed the early years of his life. The tannery was conducted by Mr. Clayton several years. John Richards and William Dunning learned the trade of a tanner at this place. The latter, about 1809, became the owner of the property and continued it until 1847, when he was elected register of the county, and removed to Georgetown, and the tannery was abandoned.

General Dagworthy erected a saw-mill near the place, which was operated several years.

Dagsborough is noted as being the residence of Dr. Edward Dingle, William Dunning and Colonel William D. Waples, who were all chosen as delegates to form the Constitution of 1882.

The Hon. William Hill Wells resided in the old Dagworthy mansion part of the time when he entertained the officers of the court, after sessions at Georgetown, and many other people of note. He succeeded Joshua Clayton, January 18, 1799, as United States Senator, and continued until 1804, and was again elected in 1813, and died in 1829. He and his wife are buried in Prince George Chapel church-yard.

Dagsborough at present has four stores and one physician, Dr. Thomas Hitch.

Sussex County

Source: History of Delaware, 1609-1888, Volume I, by J. Thomas Scharf, L. J. Richards & Company, Philadelphia, 1888.

 
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