photos by Tyrone Hemry
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Or mail to Waverly City Guide, 455 Hay Hollow Road, Chillicothe, Ohio 45601
Free Negro Heads of Families - 1830
Seal Township (At this time Scioto township has not been formed)
Head of Household Age Number in family
Abraham Love (m) 55-100 12
John Jackson (m) 36-55 8
Levi Townsend (m) 24-36 5
Joseph Boydston (m) 36-55 7
Isaac Boydson (m) 24-36 4
Thomas Harris (m) 24-36 2
Information about the last passenger pigeon killed near Sargent's Station
It happened here in Piketon, Ohio, on just about the last day of the last winter of the nineteenth century--a day when the air was sweet with centennium spring and the creeks were full from freshets of snowmelt and a lone silver-blue passenger pigeon was sighted by an observant young boy. Not to be confused with domestic pigeons bred from primarily European stock, the passenger pigeon, Columba migratoria, was wild and American and abundant. As late as 1870, the American wild dove, as it was also called, was the most populous bird in the world--one in three of all the birds in North America--and this valley was the center of its range. Here the silence of the central continent would be broken in the breeding season by the blended coos and flutters of the doves. Close by, on the Ohio River, John James Audubon himself was swarmed by a mile-wide flock that streamed continuously for three days. By sampling, measurement, and calculation, Audubon made count of its particles: "One billion, one hundred and fifteen millions, one hundred and thirty-six thousand" individual birds, more or less. In one cluster, as many souls as people then on earth. But the Piketon boy had never seen such a dove, and he thrilled at its colors: throat and breast a shimmer of clay gray-green; hind neck reflections of copper, silver, and gold; head of nickel gray with radiant red eyes. That day, the wayfarer stopped to feed near the Sargents Grain Mill, then seemed to float, with an undulatory charm, to the high tree branches above. Before this vision of grace, softly so as not to startle, the young naturalist kneeled in observance. So impressed was the bird-watcher with the bird--as it paused, for a time, to split one stolen kernel--that he drew a deep breath, he steadied himself, and then, with just one touch of the finger, BLAM!, he shot the giblets out of the thing. That was the last passenger pigeon ever sighted in the wild. Triumphant, the boy carried the torn body north up the road to Mrs. Clay Barnes, the former sheriff's wife, who pieced it together, stuffed it, and sewed black buttons into the eye sockets. I saw "the Sargents Pigeon," its colors faded, enshrouded in dust, mounted on a wall at the Cincinnati Zoo. One shiny shoe-button eye was gone. The passenger pigeon was the most communal of backboned species--"never comfortable unless it was crowded," in the words of the ornithologist Arlie Schorger. Its flocks were great colonies in which individual birds behaved like cells of a single colossal organism. It did not just coo and sing like other birds; it squawked and chattered as if to evolve a form of speech suited to its social relations. Witnesses would describe migrations as "mighty roiling rivers" and "coiling flying serpents," revealing some primal association of water, serpent, and wild dove. The story of its quick extinction reads like a short course in genocide. Weapons: guns, clubs, poles, sticks, stones, traps, nets, smoke, fire, and sulfur-bombs. Delivery vehicle: the railroad. Command and control: the telegraph. Roosting grounds were methodically raided, nestlings massacred by the hundreds of thousands. More than a hundred methods for slaughtering pigeons were tried and tested, all exploiting the determination of the species to congregate. Cannons loaded with grapeshot were fired into flocks. Exploding rockets were occasionally used. Elaborate mechanical nets and traps may have killed the largest numbers, and a patent was given for a mechanical cat designed to startle pigeons off the ground to save time. One innovation was to shoot down a trench laced with grain, so as to kill many birds at one shot. Sometimes the grain was soaked in whiskey to poison the pigeons and avoid any use of shot at all. The grand mode of taking them is by setting fire to the high dead grass, leaves, and shrubs underneath, in a wide blazing circle, fired at different parts, at the same time, so as soon to meet. Then down rush the pigeons in immense numbers, and indescribable confusion, to be roasted alive, and gathered up dead next day from heaps two feet deep.
A Pigeon in Piketon.
Publication Date: 01-JAN-04Publication Title: American Scholar Author: Sea, Geoffrey
photo by Tyrone Hemry June 2008
The east bank of the Scioto south of Piketon was purchased by Asa Vulgamore in 1799, who proceeds to lose various parcels at notorious poker games. Pressley Boydston, Snowden Sargent, and Adam and Unity Nye acquire large tracts, on which they establish the town of Sargents Station, with the explicit aim of assisting fugitive slaves escaping from Kentucky along the principal route of the Scioto Trail.
The Barnes Home sits amidst the Barnes Works (formerly known as the Seal Township Works), which may be the oldest large geometrical earthwork complex in Ohio. The Great Square in front of the Barnes Home was the only prehistoric structure in the Ohio Valley verifiably aligned to the cardinal directions. 1870-1944 Eight rare ancient birdstones are found in Pike County, four on the Barnes estate, testifying to the former ceremonial significance of the site.
Ephraim George Squire and Edwin H. Davis visited the house in 1846. They wrote the book, Ancient Monuments of the Mississippi Valley, which was issued in 1848 and distributed to Congress, highlighting the spectacular earthwork complex at Sargents Station. Congressman Abraham Lincoln visits in December, to see the earthworks, giving him direct contact with Ohio Underground Railroad operators. Lincoln then submits his first piece of anti-slavery legislation
The last passenger pigeon ever seen in the wild was shot nearby and exhibited in the home from 1900 to 1915.
The nearby town of Dove, Ohio, was the first location to be named for the Passenger Pigeon in English and was perhaps the largest regular roosting site in North America. (Note: Dove was located on Red Hollow Road where the DT&I railroad crossed.)
Notable residents of the home included:
John Barnes, Jr., who founded the party of Henry Clay in Pike County Isaac Newton Barnes, the founder of Scioto Township Henry Clay Barnes, who served as Pike County Sheriff and Blanche Barnes (wife of Henry Clay Barnes), the taxidermist who mounted the Sargents Pigeon
The original house was built by John Barnes, Jr., and father-in-law Pressley Boydston from 1803 to 1805. The house was largely rebuilt between 1865 and 1870 and shows a mixture of period influences.
John Jr. served as a judge and is mentioned supporting abolitionists in Emmett's autobiography.
John Barnes, Jr., first wife Elizabeth Boydston, and other Barnes are buried across the road form the house in the Barnes family cemetery
Restoration of the house includes the Canzanella Collection, 54 mounted specimens of doves and pigeons from around the world, including a male and female passenger pigeon, and one extremely rare Socorro dove. Information from Geoffrey Sea
photo by Tyrone Hemry June 2008
photo by Tyrone Hemry June 2008
The barns house is a large two-story square brick home with hipped roof that sits about 200 yards back from the road.
photo by Tyrone Hemry June 2008
The Sargents Home: Built around 1799 by Snowden Sargent, a Revolutionary War patriot, at a site overlooking the Alembic. It served as the first meeting place of the local Methodist Episcopal congregation, and is the only verified Underground Railroad station in Pike County. The house was expanded around 1870 in conjunction with the Barnes Home, at a time when two Barnes brothers were married to two Sargent sisters. Around 1900, Harriet Sargent founded an orphanage in the house, and in 1952 it became a rooming house for A-Plant construction workers."
Snowden Sargent b. Feb. 27, 1742; St. Margaret Parish, Ann Arundel Co., Maryland; died 1814 Sargents Station, Pike Co., Ohio. Married --1763 Mary Heathman b. 1742 Maryland; d. 1826 at Sargents Station, Pike Co., Ohio. They had the following children all born in Fredrick Co., Maryland Eli, b. Jan. 20, 1771, James, abt. 17733, George, abt. 1754, John, abt. 1775, Samuel, abt. 1796, William, abt. 1781 d. 1812-18147, Snowden, abt. 1783, Mary Magdalene, abt 1785. Elizabeth, abt. 1787, and Ellen "Dolly", abt. 1789.
More Sargents Genealogy: http://homepages.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~kachina/
1877 - May - The initial shovel of dirt for the Scioto River Railroad was taken from Snowden Sargent's field.
|Sargents Station, located between Piketon and Wakefield, was founded and named around 1800. It was named after the three Sargent brothers who came from Maryland in the 1790s, to establish stations to help Negro slaves who had managed to get across the Ohio River. Strategically chosen at the center and narrows of the Lower Scioto Valley, astride both the land and river routes going north from Portsmouth. Sargents Station was a principal stopover along the Scioto Trail, en route to Chillicothe and the Pee Pee Settlement in northwest Pike County. The term station came from the Stations of the Cross but now is termed the Underground Railroad.|
Sargent's Station - Underground Railroad
Sargents Station was founded and named around 1800, specifically as a "station -- for helping terrified slaves who had managed to get across the Ohio River." Strategically chosen at the center and narrows of the Lower Scioto Valley, astride both the land and river routes going north from Portsmouth, Sargent's Station was a principal stopover along the Scioto Trail, en route to Chillicothe and the Pee Pee Settlement in northwest Pike County.
The Sargent family, which had manumitted their slaves in Maryland in 1781, moved to the Ohio frontier for the express purpose of combating "the horrors of slavery." The Sargent Home, which still stands, has extensive underground tunnels emanating from its cellar.
In Ohio, the Sargents hooked up with a prominent political clan of like convictions, the Barnes family. James Barnes served as owner and editor of the Scioto Gazette (now the Chillicothe Gazette), while helping to establish Underground Railroad connections in Ross County. His nephew, John Barnes, Jr., built a grand home just south of the Sargent estate. Both James and John fought fugitive slave laws as Ohio state legislators. The Barnes Home also is well preserved.
Three of John's male descendants would marry Sargent girls, uniting the families and creating a nexus of UGRR activity at the strategic center of southern Ohio. Together, the Barnes and Sargents founded the Sargents Methodist Episcopal Church. A spin-of that church was established as Bailey Chapel in Wakefield, the first and only Methodist parsonage in south-central Ohio. The parsonage served as a training center for liberationist preachers.
Snowden Sargent IV, who was born at Sargents Station, Ohio migrated to eastern Illinois in 1830, at the age of 19. He became a wealthy rancher, and the patron of a Whig attorney his same age, named Abraham Lincoln. At Snowden's arrangement, Lincoln visited Sargents Station in 1848, on his way to serve out his term in Congress. He stayed at the Barnes Home, hosted by Isaac Newton Barnes and Mary Sargent Barnes. This visit may explain why Lincoln took his first public stand against slavery immediately upon his arrival in Washington, authoring a bill to outlaw slavery in the District of Columbia.
Today, the Sargents Historic Preservation Project works to preserve the historic and prehistoric sites of Sargents Station and to establish a Sargents Station Historic District.
Information Oct 2007 from
Sargents Historic Preservation Project
P. Box 161, Piketon, Ohio 45661
Copyright © 2007
Pike Co. Genealogy & Historical Society
P. O. Box 224, Waverly, Ohio 45690
September 24th, 1869, by Rev. J. W. Wakefield, Charles Dailey and Miss Nannie S. Sargent, daughter of Snowden Sargent, all of Piketon, Pike county. Ohio Cincinnati Daily Gazette Oct. 5, 1869
Above information written by Geoffrey Sea
Families in Scioto Township in 1880
Adam ** Albin ** Allman ** Armentrout ** Argabright ** Armstrong ** Appleton ** Adams ** Blakeman ** Bliss ** Bull ** Bicknell ** Boldman ** Bobo ** Brown ** Bruce ** Barnes ** Boyington ** Beller ** Bateman ** Bennett ** Beard ** Bailey ** Burns ** Boon ** Clark ** Calwell ** Channel ** Cutlip ** Clem ** Coon ** Castor ** Carter ** Chenoweth ** Collison ** Clemmons ** Dunham ** Detty ** Delay ** Donohoe ** Dillert ** Daily ** Dawson ** Drake ** Dunham ** Fant ** Fishburn ** Fernash ** Fulerton ** Farberty ** Franklin ** Fox ** Garber ** Green ** Garrison ** Hoskins ** Havens ** Hawk ** Hunter ** Hatfield ** Hankins ** Hotty ** Hughes ** Hunt ** Heaton ** Harps ** Hickman ** Hatten ** Henderson ** Head ** Horn ** Jones ** Justice ** Johnson ** Jordon ** Kendrick ** Kemper ** Lansing ** Lankford ** Littelle ** Lockwood ** Landrum ** Mowery ** Middleton ** Moore ** Miller ** McCray ** Mirsch ** Mathena ** McCoy ** Morgan ** McKinly ** McCauley ** McCormick ** McFarland ** Maxwell ** Marshal ** Mitchel ** McCarty ** Minard ** Nihart ** Neely ** Oskin ** Peters ** Poland ** Pry ** Patridge ** Pettit ** Pyle ** Perno ** Prather ** Price ** Ramsey ** Robinson ** Rose ** Rhea ** Richard ** Rigdon ** Roberts ** Shock ** Strain ** Southworth ** Stewart ** Smith ** Shy ** Strittenberger ** Schoonover ** Stir ** Sargent ** Sleister ** Stanton ** Shumer ** Sanders ** Shunk ** Starcher ** Slavens ** Shields ** Staats ** Shoemaker ** Troutman ** Towner ** Talbott ** Tidd ** Taylor ** Turner ** Toops ** Vanscoy ** Violet ** Vance ** Varney ** Vulgamore ** Vankirk ** Vaughters ** Williams ** Willis ** Wynn ** Westfall ** Wharton ** Widdis ** Whaley ** Wisenstien ** Wooddell ** Ward ** Wies ** Ward ** Weeks ** Willson ** Wilcoxen ** Yonker ** Zimmerman
Census Taker in 1890 Grant Tidd
Sand for flood levee in Portsmouth during 1945 Flood
Republican Herald 22 Mar 1945
Stephen R. Brown
2477482, 545 South Lazelle Street, Columbus, Ohio, age 29 1/12 years, born in Sargents Station, Ohio, white, enlisted 24 June 1918, at Columbus, Ohio, in 158th Depot Brigade to 17 July 1918, transferred to Company B, 309th Engineers to 28 April 1919, transferred to Section Detachment Engineers, 5th Army Service Corps to discharge, promoted to Sergeant 28 May 1919, service with American Expeditionary Forces 9 September 1918-20 October 1919, honorable discharge 13 December 1919, prior service: National Guard Columbus, Ohio, 4 October 1914, Company B, Signal Corps, Ohio National Guard to discharge, Private, honorable discharge 17 April 1917, Convenience of Government.
Letter: November 15, 1918 (Note I was unable to find a copy of the letter he wrote.)
Sargents RR Station as it looked January 2009 located on the west side of the N&W tacks as seen at the inter section of Nursing Home road and Wakefield Mound road. Only remaing depot in Pike Co. such as it is.
photo by Tyrone Hemry
photo by Tyrone Hemry
Sep 16, 1916 Chillicothe News-Advertiser
Sargents Methodist Church taken on May 18, 1952 by the late Rev. Waid Radford.
Jim Henry Collection