The early white settlers were a hearty people from the southern
states and Pennsylvania looking for new homes. Samuel Freeman,
the first white settler and his family settled west of the
Miami River and about one mile south of present day Tipp
City. They occupied a bark hut left by the Indians until
they could finish a house of their own.
John Yount came from North Carolina in 1802 bringing his
family with him, and making his home for some time right
among the Indians; he entered his farm at $2 per acre, which
they “stepped off,” thus dispensing with the
services of a surveyor.
In 1804 Michael Fair moved from Frederick County, Maryland
with his family and several other families, including a mother
and her son of about seven years of age called John Clark,
who later became Mr. Fair’s step-son. These families
first located in Greene County but not being satisfied to
remain there, moved to this area settling in the Cowlesville
area in the same year.
The settlers continued to arrive, bringing
with them large families. They found the area comparatively
level, fine for agricultural purposes, and well adapted for
raising grain. Maple sugar was made on most of the early
farms. Flax, tobacco and corn were the early products.
As the population began to advance rapidly up the Miami
Valley, a new county named Miami County was established in
1807. On February 3, 1818, a new governing body called Monroe
Township was formed. In the early years, township government
cared for the poor, maintained the roads, preserved the peace,
registered brands and fulfilled the needs of local government
Agriculture and cattle raising were the chief commodities
in the early years of the township. A breed of cattle we
now know as Polled Short Horns originated in Monroe Township
and developed under the directions of Dr. W. W. Crane.
One of the early settlements made on the western edge of
the township was called Frederickstown, named after Frederick
Yount. The first town lots were surveyed in 1828 and a post
office was established there under the name of Fidelity..
Although still in the Atlas of Miami Co., Ohio, D.J. Lake,
C.E., published by C.O. Titus in 1871 as Frederickstown,
this settlement later became known as Frederick. Many relatively
small industries blossomed in this village such as a broom
factory, saw mill and distillery to name a few.
Henry J. Hyatt came from Maryland to build his “corner
store and residence” and conceived of the idea to form
the hamlet of Hyattsville in 1833 at the intersection of
the Dayton-Troy Road (established in 1808) and the Springfield-Greenville
Road. Stagecoaches passed through Hyattsville from the very
beginning, going north and south over the road known as the
Dayton – Troy Road (now Hyatt Street). The stage stopped
here to deliver passengers and mail. In a few short years,
Hyattsville became a western “neighbor” to the
town of Tippecanoe and never developed beyond its original
twenty-seven (27) lots although it maintained a post office
(established in 1835), two stores, tavern, blacksmith shop
and a church. Most of the homes were of log structure. In1874,
the citizens asked to be incorporated into the Village of
Tippecanoe so that they might have better schools and other
John Clark, step-son of Michael Fair who came with other
families to the area in 1804, was able to visualize the success
of a town located at the intersection of the Miami and Erie
Canal (completed about 1837) and the road from Springfield
to Greenville established in 1813 and designated as a state
road in 1817. Seventeen (17) lots were recorded as the first
plat in 1840. This new village was named Tippecanoe. The
village became eligible for incorporation and was granted
a charter in March of 1851. In 1938, permission was given
by the Court of Appeals to change the name of Tippecanoe
to Tipp City to avoid endless confusion with Tippecanoe in
Samuel V. Person started the village of Cowlesville in 1842.
It was located in the northeast corner of Monroe Township
and named for the Cowles family who owned the original house,
grist mill and grain warehouse.
Ginghamsburg was settled in the early 1850’s and Christian
Beesom started the first store there in 1855. Ginghamsburg
is located at the very south edge of Monroe Township near
the Miami-Montgomery County line and to this day remains
a small “burg” located on County Road 25A south
of Tipp City with a couple of churches, small businesses,
and several dozen residents.
There were many churches dotting the area of Monroe Township
in its early history. The “Friends” (Quaker)
Meeting House in Frederick; the “Friend” Church
north of present day State Route 571 and east of Peters Road;
the German Reformed Church; The Disciples (Church of Christ),
near the Old Monroe Cemetery on present day Miami-Montgomery
County Line Road; a Methodist Church in Frederick; a Union
Church in Ginghamsburg and later, around 1865, the United
Brethren Church; Sugar Grove Church of Frederick and the
West Union (Nashville) Church of God, at Brush Creek were
established. Some of these churches are still active.
Some of the cemeteries in Monroe Township were originally
family cemeteries such as he Wells and Mills cemeteries.
Several cemeteries such as the Monroe Cemetery, Frederick
Cemetery, Pearson Cemetery and Hyattsville Cemetery may have
been the burial grounds for nearby churches that are no longer
article contains much interesting information that has
been reprinted and brought slightly up to date from previous
histories of Monroe Township. The books, from which information
was borrowed, are: "The History of Miami County, Ohio",
Beers, 1880; "A History of Miami County, Ohio, (1807-1953)",
Leonard U. Hill, Editor, 1953; and, "History of Miami County,
Ohio," E. Irene Miller, Editor., Published by the Miami
County Historical Society, 1982.