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All of the information found on this page and more, can be found in the booklet published by Roger L. Wesley - Wesley Associates Clymer New York 175 Years which can be purchased from the Clymer Historical Society by contacting the Clymer historian: Sue Rhebergen
Special thanks to Jerry TenBuckel for real-photo postcards of early Clymer from his private collection.
The following historical record was written by Gladys Vidal in 1939 and used by permission of her daughter Nancy Vidal Westerberg. Certain parts have been edited to update the text.
General History of:
THE TOWNSHIP OF CLYMER
PAST AND PRESENT
Clymer, like many other towns of the county, shows the patriotic spirit of the early settlers as it beats the name of one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, George Clymer, an eminent Pennsylvanian.
E.J. DYE'S LIVERY AND BUS-LINE located at present site of Fire Hall
Clymer was formed from the mother town of Chautauqua and was organized on February 9, 1821. At that time it included the territory that now composes the township of Mina, French Creek, Sherman, and Clymer. The whole town of Clymer then had only 12 families. The township of Mina was taken from this original territory in 1821, French Creek in 1829 and Sherman in 1832. The present township now comprises township one, range fourteen, and contains 21,985 acres.
Clymer is bounded on the West by French Creek, on the North by Sherman, on the East by Harmony, and on South by Pennsylvania.
Much of the surface is hilly upland broken by the Brokenstraw Creek and its branches, one of which passes westerly through the village of Clymer and unites with the principal stream about a mile below. Another from the North and Northeast enters it about 1 1/2 miles East of the village. The Brokenstraw, after flowing through a large pond, receives another stream which flows southerly through the Western part of town
Professor James Hall, a state geologist has said that a large deposit of stone suitable for grindstone exists and for many years such stones have been quarried. Mr. Beardsley opened one such quarry in the South West corner of the town. Few of the layers are thick enough to afford good building stone. At present there are numerous gravel banks in the township from which gravel is taken for use on the state highways and also on the county farm to Market roads.
The soil is a gravely loam which responds well to cultivation. Then, because of the hilly surface that is well adapted to grazing, the chief industry throughout the township is dairying. The farms vary in size. The average size being about 100 acres. As the farms vary so does the size of each mans dairy vary. (Ed. Note: Remember this was 1939. For update , see Farming Then & Now elsewhere in this book.) The average number is about 15 cows. These cattle are mostly Holsteins but there are also some Jerseys and Guernseys. The milk from this area is sold to various markets. Some of it goes to the Local Dairymens League plant, some goes to a Toddy plant at Mayville, N.Y., some to a milk plant in Centerville, Penna., some to various cream and cheese factories in the surrounding area.
Besides dairying, much poultry farming is carried on. The size of the flocks also varies. The average being from 300-500. These are largely White Leghorn strain though there are a few heavier breeds.
The Holland Land Co. sold the land for $2.50 per acre to any one who could make a small payment down and for the remainder, ten years time was given. (Ed. Note: see Early Owners elsewhere in this book.) The title passed upon the final payment. Therefore the list of buyers given us is of little value as to who lived here at any particular time. For example Peter Jaquins lived here from 1825, but there is no such name in the list of buyers, probably because he had not finished paying for this land.
Again a man might buy a tract of land, taking ten years to pay for it, later sell a part for cash, turning the money over to the land company as part payment and still not own the original land.
We of the 20th century have very little idea of how these first settlers lived. The following may help us. It is taken from a paper delivered before the Chautauqua Society of History and Natural Science in Jamestown, Jan 29, 1885 by Judge L. Bugbee.
Early in the morning, Mr. G. and the boys were busy with their axes cutting the second growth from the Indian fields around their wigwams and soon had a cabin 16 by 20 covered with elm bark fastened in place with poles and withes (though, flexible branches). The floor was of split chestnut logs and the door was made of the same material; the fire place was a notch in the floor at one end of the cabin made upon the bare earth with stones rudely piled against the wall of their dwelling to protect it from fire.
A log pole crossed the chimney at the upper floor from which dangled a chain with several loose hooks upon which the good housewife hung her pots and kettles in cooking for the family. The wood used for the fireplace was usually about six feet in length. A huge back log often 2 feet in diameter was brought forth on rollers and placed against the back of the chimney; on the top of this another log about one half as large; in front a fire stick with each end resting upon a couple of holders a foot in diameter.
The middle being all filled up with smaller wood, making when in full blaze the most cheerful family fireside that the world has ever known. Around this fire sat the family on rude benches with a few split bottom chairs for the parents. This stick chimney was far from fireproof, and to protect it a huge squirt gun in a bucket of water stood in the corner. Friction matches were unknown and the loss of the fire was quite a calamity when neighbors were miles away.
The gun was the chief reliance in supplying the family with meat, chiefly deer that abounded in the forest throughout the country. During the winter months, venison could be seen in nearly every cabin suspended on wooden pins to dry around the tables of kings and when fresh was equal to the best domesticated animals. Speckled trout and horned dance were found in every brook.
A majority of the early settlers came with ox teams. One or two cows and a few sheep followed behind driven by the boys. Trees were cut down, and when sawmills were within reach they were cut into log lengths, otherwise they were burned and the ashes made into lye or black salts. This brought $2.50 to$ 3.00 at Mayville or Jamestown. This was about the only way of making money.
The manufacture of maple sugar was an important industry and gave the people an abundant supply of this indispensable luxury and with a great scarcity of money was a convenient article of exchange. All clothing and linen was manufactured at home. Every farm had from Â¼ to Â½ acre of flax. Since the seed brought $1.00 per bushel it was allowed to ripen. It was tied into bundles three of four inches in diameter and when dry it was taken to the barn and threshed.
The stalks were taken to a clean meadow and allowed to rot. This required about four weeks. Then this was raked together and brought onto the barn where the women prepared it for spinning. The clothing made was rough and very unpleasant to wear for the first few weeks. The whole family went barefooted or with sandals for six months of the year. Hats were made of straw braided and sewed together. One woman in each neighborhood generally did the weaving. She received six cents per yard. Woolen goods were made from the wool of the sheep, which every farmer kept. This wool was carded, spun and woven into cloth by the farmers wife.
Feather beds were indispensable because of drafts through the house. Whiskey was always present. Pumpkin was used for dessert until apples came to be cultivated. The form of entertainment was generally a gathering together of the neighbors and doing some necessary work, such as logging bees, spinning parties. There were also sugar parties and a little dancing, though the latter was found almost entirely in the towns.
Another form of entertainment that must not be forgotten was the Sunday Visiting. The people longed for each others society. The weekdays were too busy to think of visiting. Then for the most part there were no churches, so the people went visiting on the Sabbath. The preceding article of the whole county certainly must have fitted the settling of Clymer during this first period.
North side of West Main Street
The following is a copy of the minutes of the first town meeting held in Clymer: Clymer April 3rd 1821. The first annual town meeting assembled at the house of Gardner Cleveland, Roger Haskell, moderator. John Health and Eli Belnaps Clerk, and Andrew Nobles, supervisor; William Rice, Roger Haskel, John Fitch, assessors; Daniel Waldo, town clerk; Roswel Coe, John Cleveland, Mesander Findley, Commissioners of highway (the town was only 12 miles square at that time); Ephriam Dean, Alde Nobles, John Lynde, school inspectors; John Heath, Roger Haskel, school commissioners; Alex Findley, Russel Coe, poor masters; Ande Nobles, overseer of highway No 1; Alex Findley, overseer of highway No2; William Thompson, Aman Beebe and Roger Haskell, fence viewers and damage prizers; Ande Nobles, scaler of weights and measures; Eli Belnap, constable and collector.
Resolved (1) To raise $250 to lay out on roads; (2) To raise $25 to support the poor; (3) To raise double the amount of the money we draw for the support of schools; (4) To pay $5 for every full grown wolf killed by the inhabitants of the town of Clymer, the year ensuing; (5) That hogs shall run at large with a good yoke upon them, four inches below and six inches above the neck; (6) That the next annual town meeting be held at the schoolhouse in district No. 1.
March 4th 1823, the following resolutions were passed; (1) That cattle, hogs, horses, and sheep shall not run at large in the months of Dec., Jan., Feb., and March within 1000 rods of any tavern, mill or distillery in the said town on penalty of $5; (2) No boar swine to run at large over 6 weeks old; (3) No ram to go at large from the 1st of Sept. until the 20th of Nov. under the penalty of forfeiting the same.
The report of the School Commissioners of the town of twelve-mile square in 1821, showed two districts with two schools. Each open 3 months of the year. One had an approved teacher who received $14.35 for his work; there were 35 scholars in the two schools. On December 14, 1822, school district No. 4 was formed. It included all of the present town and 10 lots from French Creek. In 1823 district No. 7 was formed, and in 1827 the town was formed into two districts, number 3, consisting of the west tier of lots and the southern most three of the next two tiers. The remainder of the town was known as district No. 5. Each year changes were made as the population grew.
On May 10, 1824, the justices of peace appointed men to fill all vacancies caused by the division of the township. (Ed note: see illustration of towns and formation date.)
In connection with Resolution 4 of April 3, 1821, we find this item of interest: it was said, Wolves are as plenty as blackberries. Residents depended upon homemade cloth for their clothing. The raising of sheep was consequently an important business. It was difficult, however, to preserve the sheep from the wolves and they were only safe in enclosures near the house. Large bounties were offered for scalps of the wolves. The state, county, and towns offered money as a bounty. It is said that Peter Jaquins of Clymer had captured nearly 100 wolves previous to 1832 for which he had received an average bounty of $12 per head.
From 1835-1845 there was a loss in the population of the county due to many going west to cheap land and because of the financial panic of 1837. Soon after 1840, there began to set into this country a great tide of immigration, which has continued until the present time. The first to come were the Hollanders. It was in 1844 that the first Holland settlers arrived (in the Clymer area). They were Chris Nabes and family and G.J. Loomans. Many others succeeded these especially in the next twenty-five years. With few exceptions all these immigrants came from Winterswijk, in the province of Gelderland, near the German frontier.
The Hollanders settled in the Northwestern part of the town. They settled on the old and the new plank roads, the pork road, and the town line road between Clymer and Sherman west from the plank road. Then they began to go over Clymer Hill (formerly known as Jackson Corners â€“ a settlement about 4 miles north of the present Clymer village). They came to within a mile of the village. There was also a settlement in what came to be called Nazareth, about 3 miles east from the village. From this beginning they have spread until they or their descendents are to be found everywhere within the township. A large percentage of the towns citizens are of this stock so that Clymer is known to people in Chautauqua County as the home of the Dutch people.
Hon. G. W. Patterson, the land agent, it is said, was so impressed with the value of obtaining such frugal, honest and industrious people as residents that he made extra inducements to secure their coming.
The great reason for this transplanting of a people to the forest of Western New York was not persecution, as in case of others who settled in Iowa and Michigan, but the hard times that had befallen the Netherlands. As pioneers they were also to find hard times and hard times and hard work in these regions. All Western New York was wilderness.
After a long voyage by sail boat to New York, and the trip by canal from Albany to Buffalo, that required weeks, these pioneers made their way to Westfield, where they could make arrangements for securing a farm, and then went on through the woods to Clymer.
In this hard experience of making for themselves a home in wilderness, surrounded as they were by endless forests, they discovered some worthy friends who helped them and whose names are remembered. They were Gov. Patterson of Westfield familiarly called Cooper Lodge who gave them nights lodging and food and also took people by wagon to Clymer. To be sure he was paid for it, but his help was much needed and appreciated. A third name is that of Jacob Vrooman, a well known in this colony. His father had come from the Netherlands and he himself understood the Holland language and was often in demand as an interpreter.
In 1825 John P. Kent organized the Methodist Episcopal Church in Clymer Village. The first class consisted of 12 members. There was also a Methodist Episcopal Church at North Clymer with a much smaller membership.
Methodist Church 1800's
The First Baptist Church of Clymer was organized in 1828 with 10 members. Their first house of worship was built in 1840. This was later given to the United Brethren people. A new Baptist Church Building was erected in 1868-89 and was dedicated in 1869.The first minister was Samuel Alvord. The church continued until about 1900. At present there is no Baptist Church at North Clymer. There is a United Brethren Church at North Clymer.
In 1845, the Congregational denomination started a religious work among the Hollanders. The work progressed so that by 1846 they had a regular minister, Adolph Hesselink. At that time there were six heads of households and their wives and five unmarried men or youths, seventeen people, who constituted the church. The next pastor was J. W. Dunnewold who became installed in 1851. At that time the membership had grown to 43 persons. Up until the time, they had worshipped in the schoolhouse, but in 1845 a new church building was dedicated.
In the meantime the people had become aware of the Reformed Church in America and sent a request to the classes of Geneva, now the classes of Rochester, that they be received into the Reformed Church. After some conferences, this request was granted April 19, 1853 (and located at Clymer Hill).
Abbe Reformed Church 1800's
Abbe Reformed Church - Later years
The year 1869 is noteworthy in that it marked the beginning of the Reformed Church in the village of Clymer. Eighteen members were given letters of dismissal from the Clymer Hill Church (the mother church) on Nov. 10, 1869. The Reformed Church of Clymer was organized with 27 members on the roll. The services were held in the building formerly known as the Baptist Church. The present building was built in 1900.
The first schools of Clymer were the one-teacher rural schools. These were scattered throughout the township neat the areas where the population was most dense. They were known as North Clymer, Dist. No. 1; Brown Dist. No. 2;Clymer, No. 3; Kings Corners, No. 4; Clymer Central, No. 5; Clymer Hill, No. 6; Clymer Station, No. 7.
Clymer Center District No. 5 for more information about this schoolhouse (tours available) go to www.littleredschoolhouse.net
The account of the founding of these one-teacher rural schools is very interesting. We have the following record of the development of the school in District No. 2 written in 1920.The beginning of the other schools was probably somewhat similar
The first record of this district was a special school meeting called to meet at the home of Jesse Brownell on March 30, 1839. No business was recorded at the meeting, but and adjournment was taken until the following Saturday, April 6. The meeting was held at the same place. There were six persons present and a vote was taken to procure a school site. It was also voted to build a schoolhouse 18 ft. by 20 ft. by 8ft. It was to be built of plank and lined with inch boards. It was to be lighted by five windows. The price paid for material and labor was $60. This was the schoolhouse in the district and was built near a maple tree, which is standing in what is now L. Groters meadow nearly across from R. Hewes orchard. Before this the pupils had attended a school in a building situated in the South part of property owned by R. Vanderkooi. The foundation of this building is still standing. The first teacher in this district was Wm. Rice.
Up until 1850 each pupil was required to bring a certain portion of wood. In that year it was voted to raise $6 for 11½ cords of wood. It was also voted to raise $32 for school expenses. The next year $48 was raised for teachers wages.
Sometime during the early winter of 1852 this schoolhouse with its contents was burned. Angeline Browne was the teacher at that time.
On June 3, 1853 a special meeting was called at the home of Jesse Brown and it was unanimously voted to build a new schoolhouse. It was decided to change the site to the North West corner of the farm then owned by Jesse Brown. The sum of $20 was raised to pay for said site, $248 to build a schoolhouse and $41 to furnish it.
In 1881 the house was thoroughly overhauled and repaired. In 1891 the expenses were advanced to $500. This was the beginning of the advance in school expenses.
The first flag was bought in 1895. About 1915, some of the young people organized a reunion of pupils and teachers of the district. This did not meet the approval of some of the people of the district and was abandoned. In 1919 the teacher, Helen Ayres King conducted a picnic in Henry Rhebergen’s woods which proved such a success that it was voted to make it an annual affair.
During the year ending Sept. 30th, 1872, the town contained the eight school districts. The number of children of school age was 518; the number attending school 387; the average attendance 208; the amount expended for school purposes $5,971.79 and the value of school houses and sites $6,675.
There was good interest manifested in education and besides the district schools, a Union school of 3 departments, 3 teachers, 126 pupils, and 9 board members was established in 1869.
In 1913, this school became inadequate, was moved across the street and was used as a gristmill by Henry Damkot Jr. It was replaced by the high school.
Union Schoolhouse later moved to the present site across the street.
In the year 1936 the schools in Clymer and vicinity were centralized and became known as the Clymer, Harmony, and French Creek District #1. This district included what had formerly been known as Clymer Districts #1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7, and French Creek District #3, 4, 5, 6, and 8. There were five members who made up the Board of Education. They were W. L. Schruers, Pres., R.L. Thompson, C.T. Legters, Deloss Rouse, and Samuel Dunnewold. D. M. Eddy was the first principal. During the year 1938-39, he resigned the position and A. M. Alday took his place.
High School - As it appeared originally
During the year 1938-39, there were, besides the principal, twenty-two faculty members including seven elementary teachers, nine high school teachers, and six teachers in the one-teacher schools of the district.
TRANSPORTATION & COMMERCE
In1849, a plank road was built from Westfield through Sherman and Clymer to the state line for the purpose of obtaining a better means of transportation between Lake Erie and the Allegheny River. This road from Clymer to Sherman has been replace by a blacktop road under county supervision.
The first highway in Clymer under supervision was one mile long. It was built of brick, extended from Clymer village to the depot and was completed in1916. At present there are two gravel Farm to Market roads. One running East and West between the Sherman Clymer road and Kings Corners; the other extending East from the concrete road to the Clymer, Harmony town line. A concrete road extends from the French Creek boundary in the West to the Harmony boundary on the East. This was built in 1926 under state supervision.
Looking east on Main St. Notice the stagecoach just leaving town!
The only railroad running through the township is the Buffalo, Corry and Pittsburgh Railroad. The town was bonded for $20,000 shortly after the Civil War for the purpose of assisting the Buffalo Oil Creek Cross Cut Railroad. They had received a charter in 1865 to connect Brocton and Corry, a distance of 43.2 miles. On June 8, 1878, the railroad was abandoned, but on January 7, 1879 it resumed its operations and became one of the greatest factors in the development of Clymer.
In the township, there were two stations on this railroad. One about 1 mile south of Clymer village known as Clymer station and one at North Clymer, a hamlet about 5 miles Northeast of Clymer known as Panama Station. Because of the decline in the use of the railroads in recent years, the latter station has done very little business and at present is abandoned.
There is a Post Office located at both Clymer and North Clymer, two R.F.D. routes going from each (North Clymer P.O. closed in 1994).
Obed Edson says, Following the enactment of the General Banking Law of 1838 wild cat banks were organized throughout western New York. They were at Clymer, Sherman, Ellery, and Dunkirk. It was customary in the organization of these institutions that the stockholders should be non-residents. They employed a man of prominence in each village who had a place of business, which was made a redemptions place for their bills. These bills were issued in New York City and sent to these officers to sign.
The place of business being accessible, the bills being redeemed at one-half of one percent discount prevented their being presented and specie demanded. By this process speculators kept the bills at par for some time, but these wildcat banks eventually all failed. They were not banks of deposit and were organized solely for the purpose of circulation of their bills. The Clymer State Bank had a note issued by the Clymer Bank probably by this wildcat bank.
The Clymer State Bank was organized and began doing business in November 1911. It was chartered September 30th and opened for business on November 2nd. It had a capital of $25,000. This continued until 1933. During the Bank Holiday, it closed and after a process of liquidation, it reopened in the fall of the year 1933 as a member of the Federal Reserve System.
John Stow kept the first store in the township in1823. It was finally owned by Alvin Williams who also from 1826 kept a tavern or inn in connection with the store. He was succeeded by John Williams who built the hotel, which was for a long time a familiar landmark on the corner of East Main and North Center St. in the village.
The first tannery was established by Ebenezer Brownell. He was the principal tanner and shoemaker for about 10 years. The tannery was made larger by John Williams and was later owned by the U.S. Leather Company. Another tannery was established by Lenard Kooman on Clymer Hill. At one time this gave employment to about 30 men. It was one of the largest in the county. The former building is now being used by the Meyerink Milling Company as a gristmill.
Peter Jaquins built the first sawmill in 1825, to which in 1826, he added a gristmill. Later builders of gristmills were Wm. Rice who built on the west branch of the Broken Straw. He sold out to Judson Hurlbut who built a sawmill too. Daniel Hurlbut built a mill on the Big Broken Straw.
In 1915, the Mohawk Condensed Milk Co. was the main manufacturing plant in the town. It employed 31 hands. Later the milk plant was owned by the Dairymens League Cooperative Association and employed about 20 persons.
(In 1939) there were three grocery stores, two hardware stores, two barber shops, one meat market, one drug store, one restaurant, one diner, one electric and jewelry shop, two welding shops, two garages and four service stations, The service station belonging to the Emblem Oil Company changed the appearance of the village considerably as the former was located where the hotel stood and the latter took the place of another old landmark of the village, namely, the Hinkley home. This stood on the corner of West Main and South center Street.
The Mohawk Odd Fellows lodge No.38 was granted a dispensation May 7, 1914 and instituted May 22, with five charter and 32 new members.
A charter was granted to the Daughters of Rebekah No.538 on February 25, 1915 and the lodge was instituted March 20, 1915.
The Clymer Local of the Dairymens League was organized in 1916, and in that year became a part of the Dairymens League Association. At the beginning there were approximately 50 members. Because of deaths only about 40 of those original members still remain. The total membership of the Clymer Local has increased to 86 members.
In April 1873, Clymer Grange No. 169 was organized. There were about 30 charter members. Jesse Brown was its first master. Mary Avery was the first lady to be master of Clymer Grange as well as the first lady master of any grange.
In both 1937 and 1938 the Clymer Grange sponsored a community fair, which was held at the Central School building. It provided a great success. There were the exhibits of various farm products raised in the community and livestock raised by members of the 4-H and F.F.A., canned goods needlework, and baked goods as well as projects completed by various products.
A small percent of the farmers of Clymer belong to the Farm Bureau. Those who do feel that they benefit greatly by the service rendered to them through insect control, soil tests, poultry and livestock disease control, poultry culling, etc. Several of the ladies of the town are affiliated with the Home Bureau and they too, feel that it is a great help to them in their work.
The G.L.F. mill at Clymer is a branch of the cooperative G.L.F. Exchange. The following is taken from a newspaper clipping concerning the annual meeting of the Clymer G.L.F. patrons.
The annual meeting of the Clymer Cooperative G.L.F. Service was held Tuesday evening, July 18, 1939, in the auditorium of Clymer Central School. About three hundred and fifty patrons and their families and friends were present. Ray Renskers, Clymers one-man band, played the mouth organ, guitar and drum while the crowd was assembling. The audience enjoyed his old time melodies; Fred Mina was chairman of the meeting. The meeting opened by a reading of the scriptures and prayer by Rev. Tysen of Clymer Hill.
(In 1939) Clymer had a volunteer Fire Department composed of men from the village. There were two trucks, a chemical and a pumper. When the fire alarm was given, everyone knew his place and they were almost immediately on their way. (Ed. Note: The town is just as proud of their volunteer fire company today as they were in 1939. Sophisticated equipment plus an ambulance manned by male and female paramedics have been instrumental in life-saving work to the gratitude of all the residents.)
The younger generation can hardly imagine the town of Clymer without electric lights and power, but it was not until 1912 that Mr. G.H. TenPas built the first power plant that furnished the homes of the village of Clymer with electricity. The street lighting district was formed in the village on November 4, 1915. In 1917, Mr. TenPas received the franchise, which gave him permission to extend his lines into the country. Residents found it necessary, however, to get home and in bed by midnight as that was the time that Mr. TenPas turned off the power.
Foundation stones of the power plant still remain for the finding (1996)
In 1931, TenPas sold out to the Niagara Power Company (and eventually lines were extended so everyone had access to electricity).
The first mails were brought by the settlers in turn from Panama. There were then no roads but in 1826 a road was laid out and a mail line was established between Jamestown and Erie. The settlers then had access to their mails at points nearer by. The R.F.D. began in 1902, at the same time when five mail carriers went out from the Clymer Post Office. They were A. Wiggers, L. Kooman, A. Beebe, O. Fardink, and C. Hopson. Two went from the Post Office at North Clymer. They were G. Wiggers, and F. Wilcox.
The Clymer Telephone Company was organized in 1914. It began operation in 1915. At present there are approximately 350 telephones in use.
The first radio in the town was a Westinghouse owned by G.H. TenPas in 1922. Mr. TenPas said that the first program he listened to was on New Years Eve, when he heard the Big Ben Chimes in Westminster Abbey in London. Many of his neighbors were there sharing the unbelievable. In 1939, well over half of the families in the township owned a radio.
O. Damon owned the first automobile in Clymer. It was purchased in 1907.
The first physician in Clymer was Roswell F. Van Buren, who came in 1826 He stayed for 10 years. The work was later taken up by Dr. Phinney, Machers Spratt, McWharf, McCray and others. The present physician and health officer of the township is Dr. R.X. Williams.
In 1938, under the direction of the Ladies Auxiliary, a public library was opened in the village. Many of the books and magazines were donated and some new ones were purchased. This has proved very successful and many people have profited by the free use of the books.
The first birth recorded in the township was that of Patience Russell in 1823. The first marriage was that of Walter Freeman to Abigail Toss in 1823. The first death was that of a daughter of Joseph Wing.
The first lawsuit was tried before Gardner Cleveland Jr. in1824, in a log hut. The jury room in the loft was reached by means of a ladder. The counsel were Samuel A. Brown and Joseph Waite of Jamestown who, with the prominent witnesses lodged on a field bed on the floor of one of the neighboring log houses.
The heaviest snowfall ever recorded was at Christmas time in 1839. It averaged about five feet.
On June 4th and 11th, 1859 there was a frost so heavy that it froze ice half on inch thick. All leaves dropped from the trees. Shrubs and saplings were killed.
A bad windstorm struck Clymer in June 1924. There were three barns wrecked and considerable damage done to other buildings. This storm struck West and South of the village.
On February 28th, 1925 there was an earthquake felt throughout the Eastern part of the United States. This was felt at Clymer. Previously there had been a slight shock in 1881.
Even though Clymer has a small population compared with many townships, it has done its part in contributing men and women to fill various places of service. Eighty-five men from our town served in the Civil War. The last of these, G.J. Dunnewold, died in April 1932. Two men from Clymer served in the Spanish American War and 36 in World War I.
This ends the Vidal history account.
It should be noted that men and women from the Clymer area served their country in World War II, Korea, Vietnam and the Persian Gulf with honor and giving of life.