Was the twelfth of the original thirteen townships. It was bounded by Cecil on the north, Nottingham and Fallowfield on the east, Bethlehem on the south, and Cecil on the west. On the 22d of September, 1785, the Court of Quarter Sessions of this county received a petition from the citizens of the town of Washington, praying that it might be set apart as a separate district from this township. The court recommended the petition to the Supreme Executive Council, and in February, 1786, the request was confirmed. On October 7, 1830, the township was again divided into North and South Strabane townships. It is drained by Chartiers' and Little Chartiers' creeks. The town of Washington was originally in this township.
An alteration of the boundary lines was confirmed by the court between this and Amwell township, at the October term in 1830, the line running from the house of Thomas Hastings to the mouth of the lane at or near Peter Dager's.
CHARTIERS PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH.
June 20, 1798, Josiah Haines conveyed two and a fourth acres of land to the Presbyterian congregation, holding the principles of the Presbyterian church as adopted in 1788, and on the 26th of June following, Craig Ritchie, Esq., attorney of Samuel Gilpin, of Cecil County, Maryland, conveyed to the trustees of the same church seven acres and three-fourths (the remaining two and a fourth acres) of the ten acres being exchanged by the said trustees for other land more convenient.
The trustees were enabled to hold land as a body politic in law, an act of incorporation having been procured February 15, 1798. The first trustees were Robert Hill, William Kerr, James McCreedy, William Hays, John Mercer, James Morrison, George Craighead, James Bradford, and John Cotton. The following members of the congregation (February 15, 1798) petitioned for the charter: John McMillen, John McDowell, Craig Ritchie, Moses Coe, Robert Hill, William Cochran, George Craighead, William Kerr, Robert Hughes, James Foster, James Allison, John Johnston, William Welch, James Officer, Hans McClean, Abraham De Haven, Robert Welch, Robert Bowland, William Hays, John Macahey, Wm. Hartapee, Nicholas Smith, Daniel Kirkpatrick, James Wishart, John Donnell, William Gault, Alexander Frazer, John Lindsey, Thomas Bryland, Samuel Logan, Thomas Bracker, John McClain, James Gaston, John Crawford, George McCook. This church is now, by a division of the township, in North Strabane. It is one mile south of Canonsbnrg, on the road leading to Monongahela City.
It is supposed that this church was organized by Dr. John McMillan, soon after his ordination, in 1776, as he received a call from both this and Pigeon Creek church. He continued its pastor until April 21, 1830. His successor was Rev. F. Leake who was installed July 12, 1831, and served until June 21, 1843. He was succeeded by Rev. Alexander B. Brown (son of Rev. Matthew Brown), September. 3, 1844, and continued to officiate until January 11, 1848. Rev. Robert White was installed September 6, 1848, and died December 14, 1848. The Rev. Joseph R. Wilson became the pastor On the 20th of June, 1849, and resigned his, pastoral care January 15, 1851. Their present pastor, Rev. William Ewing, was installed January 14, 1852. This church is one of the oldest west of the Allegheny mountains. A public newspaper of this county of May 12, 1796, says, a meeting of Dr. Millan's[sic] church was held, and after the religious service of Thursday was over, Dr. Millan intimated that business of a public nature, and of great importance required the consideration of the meeting. He was chosen Chairman, and Craig Ritchie, Esq. Secretary. The Chairman then stated the present critical state of the country and the danger of an Indian and perhaps, a British war, when, after discussion, the following resolutions were adopted:
Resolved, unanimously, That, in the opinion of this meeting, the interests of this county, require that the treaty should be carried into execution with good faith.
Resolved, unanimously, That a petition be circulated and signed, and sent to the House of Representatives to this effect.
Resolved,unanimously , That the following petition be adopted.
To the Honorable the House of Representatives of the United States:
The petition of sundry inhabitants of the western counties of 'Pennsylvania, humbly showeth.: Having lately, with great cordiality and good intentions, very generally united in a petition, that the House of Representatives would concur in the execution of the British treaty, we had believed that no further expression of wishes would be necessary. But it having been suggested that the Spanish treaty was the main object of our petition, and that we were indifferent as to the British treaty, and seeing our apprehensions that the British treaty might be defeated were but too well grounded, and are not yet removed, we feel ourselves constrained by a regard both to safety and duty, again to address your honorable House.
We consider the British treaty as peculiarly advantageous to us and essential to our enjoying the blessings of liberty and peace. Its ratification made it a solemn national act, according to the terms of the Constitution, binding the people and every branch of government, and we consider its execution necessary for public faith which we regard, interest which we pursue, and peace which we Cherish. We therefore pray that the House of Representatives will concur with the other branches of government in a full and faithful execution of the treaty between the United States and Great Britain.
This petition being signed by all present; the meeting also passed the following:
Resolved, That the Chairman be requested to write to his brethren, the ministers, on this side of the mountains, requesting them, to call their congregations together as soon as possible, on some week day and take their sentiments on this interesting subject.
In connection with the history of this church we will mention a providential incident. The Rev. Dr. John McMillan, in 1802, and who was pastor of this church, met with a severe trial, both of his faith and patience as well as his Christianity. His biographer gives the following account of this domestic affliction: Two young ministers of great promise had married two of his daughters. The Rev. John Watson, the first President of Jefferson College, under the charter, had married his second daughter, Margaret. The Rev. William Moorehead had married his eldest daughter, Jane. For a time, the prospect for enlarged domestic and social enjoyment shone brightly, on the doctor and his family, but by the Allwise, yet deeply mysterious providence of God, these two ministers, who had been married to two sisters, by their father, on the same day, took sick on the same day, died on the same day, and were buried in the same grave at the Chartiers Presbyterian church. The two funeral processions, one coming from the house of Dr. McMillan, the other from the village of Canonsburg, met at the same point where the roads united; a few hundred yards from the graveyard