"Since the arrival of Joseph Gledhill and his wife Mary Mitchell Gledhill in America"


Contributed from the family archives by descendant Samantha J Tanner
Note:  The spelling is largely as in the typed original.

Joseph Gledhill immigrant from England, will here after be known as Joseph Gledhill Sr., was born on Monday, September 11, 1797. His boyhood days were without a doubt, spent in and around Leads, Wakefield and Horbury, all of which towns are located in Yorkshire, England. Leads is now a city of half a million inhabitants. Wakefield has a population of 34,000 while Horbury is a small town of 5000. Leads is the chief city of English woolen manufacture, while Wakefield is noted for its production of cloth and yarn. It is easy to see why Joseph Sr. became a wool carder, in as much as he was brought up in the very midst of woolen manufactories. We are certain that his father was English and that he was the oldest child in the family that produced and reared him. He had brothers as well as sisters, but we have been able to find the name of but one of them. This is a sister named Sarah. All this darkness relative to his immediate family is accounted for when we find that his own mother died when he was quite young and his father remarried. The facts are that he left home at the age of twelve and found employment in a woolen mill of Wakefield and later at Leads, where he learned the trade that he followed afterwards in the United States. He was single and as far as we know had only himself to support. For fifteen years he carded wool in Yorkshire. Finally the right maiden came along in the person of one, Mary Mitchell, and he married her a Leicester, a city which is to this day noted for its manufacture of woolen hosiery. It is located about 65 miles south of Leeds. It seems very probable that he went to Leicester and worked in the woolen mills when he met Mary Mitchell. The marriage certificate has been handed down to us, and in order to preserve its contents, we carry it into this narrative.


As Mary Mitchell here came into the life of Joseph Gledhill Sr., let us hereafter consider them together. Mary Mitchell was born Wednesday, May 12, 1802, and was reared in Yorkshire, which is the place of her birth. Her mother's name before marriage was Easter Morton (sometimes spelled Morten). The name Easter seems to have been a favorite one for the reason that the Christian name of Mary Mitchell's grandmother was also Easter. Mary Mitchell had two sisters and two brothers. Elizabeth, who we think never married, and Catherine or "Kitty" married Thomas Fox, and to this marriage was born seven children, as follows: Mary, Sarah Ann, Ada, Emma, Catherine, Nicholas and Richard. The business of Thomas Fox was that of melter of metals, in this day we would say he operated a foundry. Mary Mitchell's brothers, William, known among his friends as "Billy" Mitchell and Edward Mitchell came to America with Joseph Gledhill Sr. and his family. Edward left the party in New York right after their arrival and was never seen or heard from by the family. Billy Mitchell made his home with Joseph and Mary until his death which occurred September 10, 1850.

In looking over some old letters, we have been able to find the names of certain cousins of Mary Mitchell. The list follows: Mary Fisher, who died Oct. 23, 1826; Mary Peas Elliot, wife of George Elliott, died Dec 9, 1826; Margarot Billington, died April 9, 1828; Hugh  Chadwick and Mary Thwarter. We further found that in 1853, Wedgley or Medgley Peas lived in the old place at Horbury, England.

Before Joseph Sr. and Mary his wife came to America, they had a daughter born to them. She was named Elizabeth and was born July 30, 1825. They immigrated to America during the early part of the year 1826, and did not tarry until they arrived at their destination, which was Trumbull County Ohio. As early as 1818 a great movement to the Western Reserve had set in. Trumbull County was then given the name by the immigrants of New Connecticut.

It is reasonable to assume that Joseph Sr. heard of it before leaving England and the stories told of the country controlled him in making settlement there. He followed his trade of wool carder for five years. He moved to Youngstown and continued at his trade. Uncle Joseph the oldest son and Aunt Mary the second daughter, informs us that their father "located in Trumbull County where he put a woolen mill in operation." He brought some money from England but his business ventures here did not prove very successful. He left Trumbull County and Youngstown with is family in 1832 or 1833. His means of transportation was a one-horse wagon. He came direct to Crawford County and there bought eighty acres of land, upon which some improvements had been made, for the sum of about eight dollars. They lived in a small house of round logs, which was standing on the place at the time he purchased it. And, not knowing much about farming, he busied himself at cutting down trees and chopping them into cordwood, which was piled up on his land and sold when occasion offered. In this manner he was employed mostly for several of his early years in Crawford County. He later continued his trade of wool carder after becoming established in this County. At the time of their death they had improved the land greatly. They were honest industrious people.

Joseph Gledhill Sr. departed this life August 9, 1866 aged 70 years, 10 months and 28 days. His wife Mary Mitchell died at the home of her son, William, which was also her home, March 29, 1886, aged 83 years, 10 months, 17 days. She had fought a good fight; she had kept the faith. She was a good woman and a real mother.

The Stories of Joseph Gledhill Junior and His Son William Gledhill
From "A Centennial Biographical History of Crawford County, Ohio" 
The Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago, 1902. 

Contributed from the family archives by descendant Tom Gledhill

Joseph Gledhill, of Jefferson township, Crawford County, Ohio, a plain unassuming man and a wealthy and progressive farmer, whose neighbors say that his farm is in many respects the best in that township, was born near Little Beaver, Trumbull county, Ohio, a son of Joseph and Mary(Mitchell) Gledhill, April 2, 1832. His father was a native of the north of England, and his good wife bore him eleven children, eight of whom grew to manhood and womanhood. Elizabeth, the first born, married David Snyder and she and her husband are both dead. Mary is the wife of Perry Russell, of Middletown, Ohio. Esther, who was the wife of John Shoemaker, is dead. Martha, Who married Colonel Calvin Burwell, is dead. Sarah is the wife of Henry Castle, of Jefferson township, Crawford county, Ohio. Joseph, the subject of this sketch, was the fourth in order of birth. John is dead. William lines on his father's old homestead in Jefferson township. The father of these children came to America in 1826 and located in Trumbull county, Ohio, where he put a woolen mill in operation. He had brought quite a sum of money with him to America from England, but because of over-confidence in some people with whom he dealt he failed in business in Trumbull county, in 1832. By means of a one-horse wagon he removed to Crawford county, where he bought eighty acres of land, upon which some improvements had been made, for eighty dollars. He lived in a small house of round logs, which stood on the place, and not knowing anything about farming he busied himself at cutting down trees and chopping them up into cordwood, which he piled up on his land and sold, when occasion offered, to such advantage as was possible, and thus he was employed mostly for several years. He died there in 1868, at the age of sixty-eight years, and his wife lived on the homestead farm until 1886, when she died , aged eighty-four years.

When his parents removed to Jefferson township, Crawford county, Ohio, the subject of this sketch was about six months old. He grew up amid the most primitive surroundings, helping to clear land and raise crops and availing himself of such scanty educational facilities as the locality afforded. In 1858, when he was twenty-six years old, he married Elizabeth Hershner. The following items of information concerning their children will add to the interest of this sketch: William and Edward are both dead. The eldest daughter, Della, is the wife of J. Stough, of Galion,ohio. Minnie is the wife of J.G. Brown, of Covington, Kentucky. Myrtie married R. C. Tracht, a lawyer, and lives at Galion, Ohio. Matie is the wife of James Morton, ticket agent for the Cleveland, Cincinnati, Chicago & St. Louis Railroad Company at Mt. Gilead, Ohio. Kittie is the wife of J. C. Schawber , of Henry county, Ohio. Arthur married Alma Farrell and lives in Jefferson. township, Crawford county, Ohio. Mack married Verna Beck and is a farmer in Jefferson township, Crawford county, Ohio.

After his marriage Mr. Gledhill bought and moved upon the place in Jefferson township, Crawford county, which is now his home farm. He now owns four hundred acres of land, most of it well improved and very productive, well equipped and with all necessary buildings, appliances and utensils, a form which by common consent is conceded to be for all practical purposes the finest in the township. Mr. Gledhill is a Republican and has held the office of township trustee for seven years.

There are few farmers in Jefferson township, Crawford county, Ohio, who are better or more favorably known than William Gledhill , who was born March 12, 1838, in Jefferson township, Crawford county (then Richland County), Ohio, a son of Joseph and Mary(Mitchell) Gledhill.

Joseph Gledhill was born September 11, 1799, at Browbridge, Othersfield Yorkshire, England: married at Leicester, England, in the year 1824, Mary Mitchell: moved to America in 1826, and located in Trumbull county, Ohio. Being a Carder by trade, he ran a woolen factory for five years, then removed to Youngstown and engaged again at his trade, and from Youngstown he came to Crawford county, in 1832, and bought a form, where he resided until his death at the age of sixty-eight years. His wife, who bore him eleven children, attained the advanced age of eight-four years. The following facts concerning the children of Joseph and Mary (Mitchell) Gledhill are pertinent to the purpose of this sketch. Eight of them grew to manhood and womanhood. Elizabeth, the eldest, married David Snyder and they have both passed away. Mary married Perry Russell and lives at Middletown, Ohio. Esther married John Shoemaker and is dead. Sarah married Henry Castle and lives in Jefferson township. John married Susan Burgin and died in 1883. Joseph is a prominent citizen of Jefferson township. William is the immediate subject of this sketch.

William Gledhill was born and reared on his father's old homestead in Jefferson township, of which he took charge at the age of nineteen years, of which he is now the owner and on which he has lived all his life. He owns one hundred and seventy acres of well improved and very productive land and gives his attention to general farming and stock-raising. A republican in politics, he has taken an active interest in local affairs and has held the office of township trustee for eleven years, with some intervals, and is its incumbent at this time, and his interest in good roads has been such that he has for many years been kept in the office of road supervisor. He is a member of the Junior Order of American Mechanics.

Mr. Gledhill was married April 10, 1873, to Miss Rebecca Gilliland and they have five children, named Olive, Esther, Edward, Tracy and Cleo Hazel. Edward married Miss Idessa Deam and lives in Jefferson township.

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