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Two Logstowns

Milestones Vol 24. No. 4

On many occasions the question has been raised as to the location of Logstown. Records provide evidence to show that the name was applied to both sides of the Ohio River. Since the Ohio flows in a north, northwesterly direction the terms (north and south) used in locating sites on either side of the river are misnomers. George Croghan, in his Journal of 1765' describes Logstown as "an old Settlement of the Shawanese, situated on a high bank of the north side of the Ohio River." In describing Major George Washington's holding a council with Tanacharison in November of 1753, Lewis C. Wilkinshaw in Vl. 1 of 'Annals ofSouthwestern Pennsylvania "(1939) states that Logstown is located on the northerly side of the Ohio River, just below the present town of Ambridge. In the 1814 edition of "Western Navigation, "there is a statement that "a settlement on the south side of the river is called Indian Logstown." Records show that the historic Logstown Indians had large areas of cornfields on the site now occupied by the J & L Tube Mill.

J. H. Bausman, on page 865 of the "History of Beaver County, "in referring to a 'Logstown old survey', explains that "this 'old survey' is of lands in what is known as Logstown Bottom and vicinity, opposite the site of the old Indian town of Logstown, and in the present township of Hopewell." An authority on the McDonald family, Mrs. Virginia Shriver, in writing to Mrs. Dorothy Baird of Beaver, provides information as to the location of Logstown on the Woodlawn side. In part, her letter reads: "Twin William' McDonald was the first of the family to make his home at Logstown. In 1801 he brought his bride, Phoebe Williams, to a new home near the site of the cabin built by Col.John Gibson. That home was near the west end of the present Aliquippa-Ambridge Bridge."

From the Shriver information and from evidence culled from Jordan's "Genealogical and Personal History ofBeaver County," it can be assumed that Logstown on the west side of the Ohio covered the area from the Ambridge bridge to the present West Aliquippa. In Jordan's records of early Woodlawn Aliquippa families, James A. Irons (b. 1837), Alexander McKee Jones (b. 1854), and Thaddeus F. Jones (b. 1860) have Logstown recorded as their birth places. About 1865 Logstown became a school district known as Logstown Independent School District. The first building was on the intersection of Irons Street and Hopewell Avenue. In March of 1890, a group of 118 citizens petitioned the Beaver County Courts to create a narrow strip along the Ohio River into a new township to be called Logstown. The issue was placed before the voters on November 4, 1890 but it was defeated by a vote of 110 for and 145 against. One of the first newspapers of this area had the suggestive name of airing the news, Logstown Breeze, published shortly after the turn of the century. Whenever anyone raises the question about Logstown, you may answer with recorded evidence: "Yes, there were two Logstowns."