History of Knox County

Knox County History

Events of 1826 to 1850

It was in 1826 that attorney Henry Curtis encouraged Bishop Philander Chase to bring Kenyon college from Worthington to the rural countryside that would become Gambier, Ohio. In 1828, Johnny Appleseed sold one of his downtown Mount Vernon lots and moved into western Ohio and on to Indiana. A year later, in 1829, our second courthouse became weakened and collapsed and was soon replaced by a third, very beautiful courthouse located near the northwest corner of the square. Our county population was then given at 8,326.

In the early 1830’s, young Dan Emmett ran off to join the Army, and a few years later he launched his musical and minstrel show career. In 1833, brothers Charles and Elias Cooper established their foundry business in Mount Vernon which has continued through numerous name changes to the present day. Newspapers such as the Knox County Gazette, The Western Aurora, The Mount Vernon Republican, The Democratic Banner, and The True Whig arrived and continued with mixed success. Knox Countians participated in the Texas War for Independence in 1836 and in the War with Mexico in 1846.

Many new communities were established during these years, including Amity, Ankenytown, Bladensburg, Brandon, Brinkhaven (as Nonpareil), Centerburg, Chesterville, Gambier, Howard, Jelloway, Lock, Lucerne, Martinsburg, Millwood, Monroe Mills, Mount Liberty, North Liberty, Sparta, and Wolfe’s. The first U. S. postage stamps were issued in 1847 but were available in Knox County only at Fredericktown and Gambier, even though 34 new post offices opened here during these years.

The year 1848 saw the establishment by Henry B. Curtis, and others of the Knox County Bank of Mount Vernon, a branch of the State Bank of Ohio. That same year, the formation of Morrow County took away from Old Knox our three townships north of Centerburg. Our first Knox County Fair was held in 1849, also the year that a number of leading Knox County citizens formed our first, though short-lived, Historical Society. Many of our county’s beautiful homes, featuring Greek Revival and other architectural styles, were planned and constructed during these years as well.

< 1800 to 1825>   < 1851 to 1875>

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