City of Ashtabula, Ohio
HISTORY OF ASHTABULA
very first settler to settle in what now is Ashtabula City was Thomas Hamilton
in 1801. I estimate that he arrived about the beginning of June, 1801. Thomas
Hamilton settled on the west side of the Ashtabula Harbor and built the first
permanent structure in the city of Ashtabula being a log cabin. He brought no
family and remained close to two years.
1803, a second settler along with his wife and children moved to Ashtabula from
Austinburg. Some of my research has lead me to believe that the George Beckwith
family took up residence in the abandoned log cabin of Thomas Hamilton.
George Beckwith froze to death in a blizzard the following winter trying
to bring back provisions from Austinburg to his family in Ashtabula. A
miscarriage of justice has been done by some local historians in the past. Some
historians has credited a later settler as being the first permanent in settler
Ashtabula. What was forgotten
or ignored was the fact that Mrs. George Beckwith remained in that log cabin for
several years helping other settlers and travelers by taking in lodgers and
selling food to support herself and her two daughters. Mrs. Beckwith remained in
Ashtabula many years before moving to Sheffield Township. She died at the age of
90 in Kingsville. I would say with these facts that the first permanent settler
arrived in 1803.
1804 Mathew Hubbard settled in Ashtabula coming from Trenton, New York as a land
agent for his uncle, Nehemiah Hubbard. He built a crude log cabin on the western
bank of the Ashtabula River. After selecting a farm site and a location for a
town, Hubbard went back to Erie, Pa. for his family and brought them to
note: This is only a short sketch of early Ashtabula City history. More will
follow in the months to come. The bicentennial is fast approaching and should be
in June of 2003. The last celebration Ashtabula held was in1953. The
Sesquicentennial was a major
event in Ashtabula with the surrounding townships
in the celebration. The Bicentennial of Ashtabula also coincides with the
Bicentennial of Ohio.
No book has ever been written on the complete history of Ashtabula. I am in the process of writing this history and I hope to be in print by Ashtabula's Bicentennial. I also will do my best to write an accurate history. This book will also include the townships of Ashtabula, Plymouth and Saybrook Townships.
anyone has any stories, pictures or home movies concerning the history of
Ashtabula and the surrounding townships that I can copy for my history book or
get in contact with me.