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Return to Milestones Vol. 4, No. 4



Milestones Vol. 4. No. 4--Autumn 1978

From - A History of Indian Villages and Place Names in Pennsylvania by Dr. George P. Donahoo.

CONOQUENESSING. A creek which unites with Slippery Rock Creek and enters the Beaver River from the east, near the dividing line between Beaver and Lawrence Counties. Heckewelder, who makes the mistake of calling the stream a branch of the Allegheny, gives the origin from Gunachquenesink, "for a long way straight." The locative ink, or ing, would indicate that this was the name of a locality. In 1770 Sir William Johnson had a conversation with a chief named Conoquieson. The name may possibly be connected with the Indian town on this creek (Arch. Pa., IV, 373, 1853). C. F. Post passed through this village in 1758, on his way to Kuskuski from Fort Venango, at Franklin. He says, "We came to the River Conaquanosshan, an old Indian Town-, we was then fifteen miles from Cushcushking (Arch. Pa., 111, 523, 1853)." The Indian trail, which ran northward from Fort Duquesne to Fort Venango, crossed the branches of the Conoquenessing. This trail was crossed by the one leading from Kittanning to Kuskuski, by way of the Conoquenessing. Another trail ran northward from Logstown (Economy), crossed the Conoquenessing, near its junction with Slippery Rock Creek, and then ran on up along the valley of the former stream to Franklin, without touching the large Indian village at Kuskuski (New Castle). Christopher Gist and George Washington, in 1753, went northward from Logstown, crossing the Conoquenessing at the "Murthering Town," which was possibly at the site of the village mentioned by Post in 1758. This town must have been near the forks of the Conoquenessing and Slippery Rock Creeks, near Wurtemburg, according to Gist's map and Journal (See Darlington's Gist, 81, 1893). According to other maps Murdering Town was situated in Butler County, not far from Butler, where the trails between Kittanning and Kuskuski, crossed the trail from Fort Duquesne to Venango. General William B. Irvine made a survey of this entire region in 1785.