Dale R. Broadhurst's ‘The Spalding Saga’

A  view  of  Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in 1812, the  year  Solomon Spalding  arrived  there

The Rev. Robert Patterson, Sr. (1773-1854)

R. Patterson's 1817 poetry book  |  extracts from R. Patterson's diary  |  1868 Presbytery of Erie
Notable Printers of Early Pittsburgh  |  1884 History of Erie Co.  |  Chronology  |  Comments

The Patterson Publishers

Episode Six in the Spalding Saga

(this section is under construction)

THIS episode of the "Spalding Saga" xxx xx xxxxxx xx xxxx x xxx xx xxxxxx xx xxxx x xxxx xxx xxxx x x xxxxxxx x xxxxx xxxxx xx xxxxx x xxxxx xxxxx x x xxxxxxx x xxxxxx x x xxxxxxx x xxxxx xxxxx xx xxxx xx xx xx xxxxxx xx xxxx x xxxx xxx xxxx x x xxxxxx xx xxxxxx xx xxxx x xxxx xxx xxxx x x xxxxxxx x xxxxx xxxxx xx xxxxx x xxxxx xxxxx x x xxxxxxx x xxxxx xxxxx xx xxxx xx xx xx xxxxxx xx xxxx x xxxx xxx xxx xxxxx xx xxxx xx xx xx xxxxxx xx xxxx x xxxx xxx xxxx x x xxxxx xxx xxxx x x xxxxxxx x xxxxx xxxxx xx xxxx xx xx xx xxxxxx xx xxxx x xxxxxx x x xxxxxxx x xxxxx xxxxx xx xxxx xx xx xx xxxxxx xx xxxx x xxxx xxx xxxx x x xxxxxx xx xxxxxx xx xxxx x xxxx xxx xxxx x x xxxxxxx x xxxxx xxxxx xx xxxxx x xxxxx xxxxx x x xxxxxxx x xxxxx xxxxx xx xxxx xx xx xx xxxxxx xx xxxx x xxxx xxx xx xxx xxxx x x xxxxxx xx xxxxxx xx xxxx x xxxx xxx xxxx x x xxxxxxx x xxxxx xxxxx xx xxxxx x xxxxx xxxxx x x xxxxxxx x xxxxx xxxxx xx xxxx xx xx xx xxxxxx xx xxxx x xxxx xxx xxxx x x xxxxxx xx xxxxxx xx xxxx x xxxx xxx xxxx x x xxxxxxx x xxxxx xxxxx xx xxxxx x xxxxxxx

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1812 Patterson & Hopkins book

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(this section is under construction)

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Document 1: 1949 Virginia E. Luckhardt's comments (excerpts)

Source: Luckhardt, Virginia E., "Notable Printers of Early Pittsburgh..." PA, 1949.

Note 1:  Although this unpublished thesis has never been copyrighted, only limited extracts are presented below. Complete copies may be viewed at the Pittsburgh Carnegie Library.

Note 2:  Luckhardt is one of the few sources who document Robert Patterson, Sr's. early years in the Conneaut Creek region of northwestern PA. Among the Erie Co., PA Presbyterian congregations served by Robert Patterson, Sr. as a young man was the one centered in East Springfield, about 8 miles east of the later (1809-1812) home of Solomon Spalding (across the state line in New Salem, OH). John N. Miller (one of the 8 Conneut witnesses for the Spalding authorship claims) was an early member of the Presbyterian church founded by Robert Patterson, Sr. in Springfield Twp.

Note 3:  The Pittsburgh book-selling business Patterson conducted in partnership with John Hopkins lasted from 1810 until it was dissolved on Nov. 5, 1812. Generally speaking, the efforts of this original company were continued thenceforth, until the end of 1817, under the new firm of Robert & Joseph Patterson. While this company mostly sold books and stationery and supplied local print-shops with paper, the two brothers also conducted some small-scale publishing, perhaps mostly using the press owned by Silas Engles. If Robert Patterson ever managed the operation of his own printing press, it must have been during 1813-1817 -- the very time that Solomon Spalding was in the Pittsburgh area, attempting to have his writings published.

Note 4:  On Jan. 1, 1818 the Patterson brother's company went into bankruptcy and its printing assets were placed in the hands the recently formed Butler & Lambdin company. J. Harrison Lambdin, a partner in that printing business, was also a partner of Robert Patterson, Sr. in the newly organized publishing firm of Patterson & Lambdin, a venture which lasted until Jan. 1, 1823 when it too went into bankruptcy. It is likely that Lambdin furnished a good deal of the capital and energy for this third effort by Patterson to get into the publishing trade. Patterson & Lambdin printed numerous books on the press of Butler & Lambdin, and were major publishers in Pittsburgh.

Document 2: 1884 misc. historical sketches (excerpts)

Source: History of Erie County, Pennsylvania... IL, 1884.

Notes: Robert Patterson, Sr. left his duties as a Presbyterian minister in North East township and East Springfield in April of 1807, two years before Solomon Spalding settled about 8 miles west of there (in 1809, across the state line in New Salem, OH). In 1806 the Springfield church was formally organized by Rev. Johnston Eaton (1805-1847), who became its pastor in 1808. Eaton and Patterson both married into the family of Colonel John Canon, the founder of Cannonsburg, PA. Patterson married John's daughter, Jean [Jane], and Eaton married John's neice, Eliza. Eaton remained as pastor of the Springfield church until Nov. 1814; he thus overlapped the stay of Solomon Spalding in that region by about four years. Rev. Eaton almost certainly was an acquaintance (and perhaps a good friend) of Solomon Spalding.

John Rudd, Sr. and his family moved to the NE corner of Springfield twp. Erie Co., PA in 1805, after purchasing land from Solomon Spalding in Otsego Co., NY. Lyman Jackson, Sr. and his family moved to the neighboring Erie Co. township of Conneaut in 1806 (some accounts say 1805), also after having purchased land from Spalding in Otsego Co. The Rudd and Jackson families were related: John's son John Jr. married Lyman's daughter Rosanna in about 1801, probably in Richfield, Otsego, NY. If Spalding made a 1805 visit to Erie Co., PA and what later became Ashtabula Co., OH, he may have traveled with the Rudds or the Jacksons on their pioneer journey westward.

Document 3: 1868 Samuel J. M. Eaton's comments (excerpts)

Source: Eaton, S. J. M. (1820-1889) History of the Presbytery of Erie... NY, 1868.

Notes: The excerpt from a journal of Robert Patterson, Sr. provided below is from Nov. 1803, and thus was written several years prior to his return to Pittsburgh and well before the arrival of Solomon Spalding in the Conneaut Creek area. While the excerpt mentions Patterson's having visited people along the Conneaut Creek valley and watershed, it says nothing about his later activities in East Springfield, where be conducted occasional preaching services, beginning at about this same time (early in 1804). Since Patterson remaiend in the area until about April of 1807, he presumably was one the scene when John Rudd, Sr. and his family arrived in Springfield in 1805.

While the brief biography of Robert Patterson, Sr. included here mentions his book-selling business in Pittsburgh (Patterson & Hopkins, R. & J. Patterson, etc.), it fails to mention that Patterson also maintained a financial interest in various book-publishing ventures in that city, conducted in association with printers Butler & Lambdin and Silas Engles.








Virginia E. Luckhardt




A study submitted in
partial fulfillment of the
requirements for the degree of 
Master of Library Science





Carnegie Library School



Introduction . . . . . . . . . i

JOHN SCULL. . . . . . . . . . 01

ZADOK CRAMER. . . . . . . . . 11

JOHN D. ISRAEL. . . . . . . . 18


EPHRAIM PENTLAND. . . . . . . 27

ROBERT PATTERSON . . . . . . .32

SILAS ENGLES. . . . . . . . . 36

JOHN M. SNOWDEN . . . . . . . 40


Index of Printers . . . . . . 47



22   WILLIAM EICHBAUM, JUNIOR 1787 -- 1866
The biography of William Eichbaum is inspiring -- a compound of integrity and intelligence -- and it belongs almost entirely to Pittsburgh scenes and events. Born at Monte Cenis, Burgindy, he came to old Fort Pitt as a boy of ten, when the town was an outpost of civilization containing only ninety- seven houses. He stayed seventy years and watched a thrilling expansion of industry and commerce wherein his own enterprise played no little part.1 His father, William Peter Eichbaum, was a native of Altenach, Saxony, and an old world craftsman in glass. So great was Herr Eichbaum's skill that Louis XVI invited him to assist in establishing glass manufactories in Burgundy, where he took his English wife and eight children to live until shortly before the French Revolution.2 Emigrat- ing to the United States in 1793, the family finally (1797) crossed the Allegheny Mountains to contribute their knowledge and industry to two new and promising businesses in Pittsburgh -- glass and printing.3 The father was employed by O'Hara and Craig to manage a glassworks,4 and young William was set free to discover his destiny in the shop of Cramer & Spear. Typical of the highest types of immigrants who came to these shores, the Eichbaums brought the best of Europe to plant in the virgin soil of America.   There are many proofs of the maximum "like attracts like," and the attraction of Zadock Cramer for William Eichbaum is one more. Cramer was establishing himself as a publisher of  
  culture and sensibility in the early 1800's, and Eichbaum became the "active youth of good morals and respectable character" whom Cramer hired as an apprentice (1803).5 Their natures must have been entirely congenial, for their association con- tinued until Cramer's death in 1814, with no record of conflict or difficulty. William served the first seven years as an apprentice bookbinder, and in 1810 he was taken into the firm as a full-fledged partner.6 At twenty-three years of age he claimed membership in one of the finest printing houses in the west, a sound beginning for a distinguished career. His social relations with the senior partner of Cramer, Spear & Eichbaum were also cordial: before the age of steamboats the teo traveled to Louisville in an open boat, acquainting them- selves with each other and with the country into which they were to send their presswork.7 Any influence exceted by Cramer on the newcomer would have been to Eichbaum's advantage, for of all the early printers, Zadock Cramer was the best suited to develop the fine qualities of character which were Eichbaum's by inheritance.   The untimely death of Cramer ended this profitable enter- prise, and Eichbaum stayed with Spear only until a formal disolution of partnership could be arranged (1817). Two years previously, William Eichbaum had married Rebecca Johnston, daughter of John Johnston,9 thereby allying himself with another printing family of virtue and ability. One direct result of this alliance was his brief publishing connection with his brother-in-law, Samuel R. Johnston. After nineteen  
  years in printing, Eichbaum's interests shifted to business and civic affairs. Success in journalism often carries with it an intimate knowledge of other fields of endeavor and often fits men particularly well for careers in public service. The awareness and perspective or reporters and editors sooner or later give them a "Don Quixote" complex -- a desire to defend the right as private citizens, even without the support of the press. Fired by concern for the prosperity of Pittsburgh, Eighbaum invested freely in commercial ventures: a foundey, a commission business, and a bakery.10
William Eichbaum from long habit was accustomed to drop in (to Johnson & Stockton) he having been a former proprie- tor of the house, and earlier in life an employee of Zadock Cramer, its founder. In stature he towered above all of whom I here speak; nor in this alone was his promin- ence due. He was a man much sought after, and with no need to push himself into prominence, which he never did. But few men of his day were called to as many local positions as were filled by him . . . no name figures so frequently on boards of corporations, while in many his stands at the head . . . He was long the chief of the fire department, the idol of all firemen, who lived long after his locks had been white as snow were unwilling to release him . . . . He was a man of large and varied information, of excellent judgment, both kind and pure of heart, and ever ready to make sacrifices on behalf of others.11
Public offices gravitated to him as well.
Mr. Eichbaum enjoyed the confidence and esteem of the public in a remarkable degree. He was of the committee appointed by the citizens for the reception of Lafayette on his visit to Pittsburgh in 1824 . . . . From 1828 to 1833 he held the position of postmaster of Pittsburgh . . . . He was elected to and retained in each
branch of the city councils as long as eligible, and then transferred, by the votes of the people, alternately for twenty-two consecutive years. In 1858 he was elected city treasurer, and held office until his decease, in 1866.12
In the midst of his successes, Eichbaum suffered a reversal which put to the test his ability to accept misfortune. The great fire of April 10, 1845, wiped out nearly everything he owned, a sizeable fortune, and cast him back on the resources of his books, his friends, "a mind stored with principles and facts." and "large and practical views of divine providence."13 Though his financial recovery was slow, his insistence on adequate fire protection for others was the typical reaction he expressed. Eichbaum possessed numerous trade secrets on which he could call to bolster his income. At one point in his life he had befriended an expert bookbinder from the old world who knew the secret of faint-ruled letter-paper. Bound by his profession not to reveal the secret except for a price, the old man told Eichbaum to mix with his ink "a certain small part of a very large animal." Eichbaum ingeniously inter- preted the advice to mean oxgall, and thus happened on a valuable trade secret.14 With an inventive turn of mind, a man can make a fortune at will -- and lose one without too much remorse.   Eichbaum's life resembles a fictional account of the rewards of hard work and upright behavior. In the days of the frontier, a craftsman could truly carve out for himself the career he desired; but the influence of character and ethics  
  on business success were much the same as they are today. Because of his enlightened conscience William Eichbaum deserves to stand as an example to his profession and as an ideal for those who would be his imitators.


32   ROBERT PATTERSON 1775--1854
Robert Patterson offered Hugh Henry Brackenridge the only real competition he received at home in the field of letters. Both men were popular writers of the day, Patterson serving the muse of poetry while Brackenridge authored the first fic- tlon printed west of the Alleghenies, Naturally, enough, both men were also interested in the printing business, on which their fame depended, and took direct measures to establish the trade more firmly in Pittsburgh. Because of that fact, the life story of Robert Patterson belongs with the history of the western press as well as with the history of western belles lettres. He was born on April 1, 1773, in Saratoga County, New York, the son of Joseph and Jane Moak Patterson.1 Part of the Patterson clan already lived in Philadelphia when Joseph Patterson brought his family to the area around Canonsburg, Pennsylvania. The new Canonsburg Academy had just opened; in fact, lessons were conducted on the lawn while the buildings were being finished.2 Taking advantage of the opportunity, "Robert Patterson was the first student to recite at Canons- burg Academy, in 1791, 'under the shade of same sassafras bushes, growing in a worm fence,' on the banks of Chartiers Creek." 3 As his uncle (also Robert Patterson) was professor of mathematics at the University of Pennsylvania, 4 it seemed logical to send the boy east to finish his education -- as well as to place him under a watchful eye, perhaps the latter    
  insinuation is unfair, for young Robert had decided to enter the ministry. while he journeyed across the mountains in 1794, he met George Washington on his way to Pittsburgh to quell the Whiskey Rebellion. 5 Feelings were to run high and political tensions increase before Robert's return west. After graduation, Patterson toured the countryside for four years and was then licensed to preach, his first pastorates being in the vicinity of Erie, Pennsylvania. 6 Almost thirty years of age, he doubtlessly eked out a scant living in the pulpit, but he was sincerely devoted to his calling. As was the custom in earlier days, the ministry invariably supplied presidents for educational institutions; and the thriving Pittsburgh Academy offered Patterson the president's chair in 1807 for a term of three years. 7 The position was no sinecure; teaching duties gave him frequent contacts with the students, among them Samuel Reed Johnston. At the same time, and until 1833, Patterson preached at the Highland Presbyterian Church, 8 and in his spare moments be began to write the poetry which earned him a local reputation. Native talent plus the best education then available in the new world made him truly a man of letters in a generally unlettered era.   At the conclusion of his term at the Academy, Patterson decided to indulge his interest in books, and in addition to earn himself a living, by venturing into bookselling with John Hopkins as a partner. 9 Being a minister and a professor, he had a fine background for editing and a penchant for choosing religious and cultural works for publication, At first in    
  competition with the well-founded bookstore of Zadok Cramer, Patterson and Hopkins had the trade to themselves when Cramer left for the South. Their advertisements in the Gazette were modest and formal: "Gentlemen who wish to subscribe for this excellent and complete set of Dr. Johnson's Works, are invited to set their names on a subscription paper in the Bookstore of Patterson and Hopkins." 10 In spite of every evidence of a successful enterprise, the partnership dissolved "by mutual consent" in 1812, and the firm became "R. & J. Patterson." 11 An amusing note was sounded on the title page of a book pub- lished by Patterson about 1813: "The Honest Man's Almanack: this almanack contains nothing to encourage the evil practices of liars, drunkards, rogues, lazy fellows, infidels, tories, cowards, bad husbands, and old bachelors." 12 Sermons are not necessarily confined to churches, as Patterson evidently was aware. He made his publishing house fulfill a double purpose. Canonsburg gave Patterson not only his education, but also his wife, Jane Canon was the daughter of Colonel John Canon, founder of the town, whom Patterson had probably met during his years at school. 13 Although born to prominence, Jane must have been proud to be courted by one of the more promising young men of the time -- minister, scholar, and bud- ding poet. Poetry and courtship are related elements, but Patterson did not become a full-fledged poet until the publi- cation of his book of poems in 1817, 14 before which date he had submitted several short verse-pieces to the Gazette. 15 Under the pen-name of "The Recluse," he wrote copiously and    
  took his efforts seriously, at one time to the extent of publish- ing two columns in defense of a poem that had been rejected.16 The quality of his prose indicates self-conscious pedantry:
This circumstance, though trivial, leades me to exult in having selected the Two Roses, as the first victim for immolation upon the shrine of taste; for in the first place, it demolishes every pretext of suspected allu- sions, which the master of the sacrifice has conjured up from the lurid charnel-house of egotism; and, in the second place, it relieves me from an implied engagement to furnish fresh offerings for his reeking altar. 17
The eternal outraged author! The criticism of Solon Buck is justified by Patterson's outburst:
... very little of the material in the early papers could pass as belles-lettres. Prose was now too stilted, now too rhetori- cal, now far too flowery in comparison with the better prose of the day; poetry often dripped with sentimentality or swelled with flatulent bombast ... 18
Patterson is no more guilty than the others who encouraged and employed artificiality of style. In 1840 Robert Patterson retired from his multiple duties and went to the country to live. He wisely withdrew while he was still prominent and still hearty enough to enjoy his lei- sure. Fourteen years later, on September 5, 1854, 19 he died, a distinguished contributor to the literature of the frontier.        
36   SILAS ENGLES ? -- 1827
For every man of the stature of Zadok Cramer or William Eichbaum, there are hundreds who strive toward the same goals and fall short of attainment. Some, however, advance farther than others, although the glimpses of their activities along the way are tantalizingly inadequate for the complete recon- struction of their personalities or accomplishments. Such is the case with Silas Engles. The records yield a partial framework of facts on which it is interesting, if not always rewarding, to try to fit some substance. The earliest date mentioned for Silas Engles is the year 1807, when, according to Brigham's bibliography of newspapers, he became owner of the weekly Republican Advocate in Frederick- town, Maryland. 1 The unusual spelling of his surname seems to obviate the chance that there would be two men of that name in the printing profession in the early part of the nineteenth century. Therefore Silas Engles made his way north and west to Pittsburgh within the next five years, for the year 1812 finds him launching the Pioneer as the first literary magazine in Pittsburgh. 2 Engles had the inspiration but not the prac- tical approach necessary to continue publication, and the Pioneer expired within nine months. 3 Who is to say what influence those few issues had on Zadok Cramer's western Gleaner, a magazine of much the same intent, which appeared one year later? The mistakes of others are often stepping-stones for those who can learn by observation.    
  Perhaps Engles was the pioneer printer in the field of cul- tural periodicals in Pittsburgh, as the title of his magazine suggests. It was an excellent publication, small in size and well set up. The contents were rather ponderously but cor- rectly written, and treated of things academic ... Contribu- tions were unsigned ... there is no other evidence of a criti- cal literary spirit in the city." 4 The Reverend David Graham edited the work, 5 and a prospectus defining the magazine was printed in the Gazette for November 15, 1811. It was "to con- sist of a series of papers, Liberal, Critical, Literary, Moral, and Theological. Literary friends are requested to contribute their aid, in what, it is hoped, they will pronounce a laud- able attempt to cultivate society." 6 Addison's moral purpose had crossed the Atlantic! The short life of the Pioneer left Engles with no major publication, although the entry "Engles S. & Co. printers, Wood, between 3d and 4th" in the city directory for 1813, 7 indicates that the house still functioned. In 1815
a most alarming fire broke out in the hatter's shop of Mr. Church, on the East side of Wood, between Third and Fourth Streets, which before it was extinguished destroyed the whole range of fine brick houses between the two Streets, besides a number of frame and back buildings. 8
Engles was forced to make the first of various moves, this time to Wood Street above Diamond Alley, where he resumed his- printing within a week. Included in his advertisement of the new location is a single note of personalia:    
S. Engles, Printer ... takes this method of expressing his gratitude to his fellow-citizens, for their unpar- alelled (sic) exertions in saving the principal part of his materials from the destructive Fire on Friday morning, the 27th ult. and sincerely hopes they may never need a reciprocation of the favour. He earnestly calls on those indebted to him, to settle their accounts without delay.9
Silas Engles here emerges as a person with a mild sense of humor, a grateful spirit, and a complete absence of self-pity. This taste of a personality whets the appetite for more, but in vain. The new location, or perhaps the inventory necessitated by the fire, stimulated Engles to propose the publication of another paper under the title which he had used in Maryland, the Republican Advocate.10 The newspaper never materialized -- or was never recorded. Instead, Engles moved again, "to Liberty Street, nearly opposite Fifth Street,"11 the location which he was occupying when he entered into partnership with Ephraim Pentland to print the Statesman. Established as the successor to the Commonwealth, the Statesman entered the field on May 9, 1818, for a run of two years.12 Engles printed for Pentland until November 21, 1818, when John Little took over the task for one year.13 In 1820 the name of Pentland was given as both printer and editor,14 and the printing office of S. Engles was again moved, in April, 1819, to the Diamond behind the Court House.15 This central situation may mean that Engles had found it more profitable to print smaller assignments such as An Act Incorporating the City of Pittsburgh,    
  for his name was no longer associated with any periodical publication. The final record, his death date, was entered in Cramer's Almanack as July 17, 1827.16 These few facts about Silas Engles compose an elusive picture of the man at best. Either his talents were never realized or the data concerning him have been neglected and buried. His youthful activities tend to suggest high purpose and vision, which the years too often have a way of defeating.


    1. History of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. v. 2. Chicago, A. Warner, 1889, p. 218. 2. Ibid. p. 216. 3. Loc. cit. 4. Dahlinger, C. W. Pittsburgh; a sketch of its early social life New York, G. P. Putnam, 1916. p. 41. 5. Ibid. p. 189. 6. Ibid. p. 188. 7. History of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. op. cit. v. 2. p. 216. 8. Mercury. August 1, 1817. p. 1, col, 2. 9. Johnston, W. G. Life and reminiscences from birth to manhood of Wm. G. Johnston. W. G. Johnston, 1901. p. 10. 10. History of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. op. cit. v. 2, p. 217.   11. Johnston, W. G. op. cit. p. 202, 203. 12. History of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. op. cit. v. 2, p. 217. 13. Loc. cit. 14. Ibid.




 1. Godcharles, F. A,, ed. Encyclopedia of Pennsylvania 
    biography. v. 3. New York, Lewis Historical Publishing Co., 
    1930. p. 784.
 2. Loc. cit.
 3. Starrett, A. L. Through one hundred and fifty years; the
     University of Pittsburgh Pittsburgh, University of
     Pittsburgh Press, 1937. p. 44.
 4. Godcharles, F. A., ed. op. cit. p. 784.
 5. Starrett, A. L., op. cit. p. 44.
 6. Godcharles, F. A., ed. op. cit. p. 784.
 7. Baldwin, L. D. Pittsburgh: the story of a city. Pittsburgh, 
     University of Pittsburgh Press, 1937. p. 161.
 8. Godcharles, F. A., ed. op. cit. p. 784.
 9. Starrett, A. L., op. cit. p. 44.
10. Gazette. August 9, 1811. p. 3. col. 5.
11. Gazette. November 6, 1812. p. 3. col. 5.
12. Anderson, E. P. "The intellectual life of Pittsburgh, 1786-
     1836, part 5: Literature." p. 110. (In Western Pennsyl-
     vania historical magazine. v. 14, p. 92-114. April 1931)
13. Godcharles, F. A., ed. op. cit. p. 784.
14. Starrett, A. L., op. cit. p. 44.
15. Gazette. January 13, 1816. p. 3. col. 1, 2; Nov. 15, 1815.
16. Gazette. January 28, 1814. p. 3. col. 1. 2.
17. Loc. cit.
18. Buck, S. J. and Buck, E. H. The planting of civilization in
     western Pennsylvania. Pittsburgh, University of Pittsburgh 
     Press, 1939. p. 380.
19. Godcharles, F. A., ed. op. cit. p. 784.




1. Brigham, C. S. History and bibliography of American news-
     papers, 1690-1820. v. 1. Worcester, Massachusetts,
     American Antiquarian Society, 1947. p. 265.
 2. Buck, S. J. and Buck, E. H. The planting of civilization in
     western Pennsylvania. Pittsburgh, University of Pittsburgh 
     Press, 1939. p. 385.
 3. Booth, R. E. "American periodicals 1800-1825," p. 162
     (In Library Journal. v. 71, p. 156-63. Feb. 1, 1946)
 4. Anderson, E. P. "The intellectual life of Pittsburgh, 1786-
     1836, part 5: Literature." p. 111. (In Western Pennsyl-
     vania historical magazine. v. 14, p. 92-114. April 1931)
 5. Field, A. G. "The press in western Pennsylvania to 1812."
     p. 236. (In Western Pennsylvania historical magazine. 
     v. 20, p. 231-64. December 1937)
 6. Gazette. November 15, 1811. p. 3. col. 5.
 7. City directory. (Typewritten excerpt from R. & J. Patterson's
     Honest man's extra almanac. Pennsylvania room, Carnegie
     Library of Pittsburgh) p. 2.
 8. Gazette. October 28, 1815. p. 3. col. 1.
 9. Gazette. November 4, 1815. p. 3. col. 2.
10. Gazette. December 2, 1815. p. 3. col. 4.
11. Gazette. March 30, 1816. p. 3. col. 4.
12. Brigham, C. S. op. cit. v. 2, p. 967.
13. Determined by checking imprints of the Statesman.
14. Brigham, C. S. op. cit. v. 2, p. 967.
15. Statesman. April 10, 1819. p. 3, col. 5.
16. Cramer's magazine almanak for , , , 1828. Pittsburgh,
     Cramer & Spear (1829) p. 72.



E R I E   C O U N T Y,

P E N N S Y L V A N I A.


I L L U S T R A T E D.



[p. 229]

The first known American citizens who located permanently within the bounds of Erie County were Thomas Rees and John Grubb, who reached Erie in the spring of 1795... Other settlers during 1795 were Rufus S. and George W. Reed . . . Jonathan Spaulding in Conneaut...

[pp. 245-246]
Most of the colonists were Presbyterians from New England and the valley of the Susquehanna, and it was no more than natural that that denomination should have been the first to look to the spiritual welfare of the promising settlement. In 1790, a tour that is somewhat celebrated in the annals of the church was made through this section by Revs. McCurdy and Stockton, two missionaries who were sent out by the Ohio and Redstone Presbyteries...
Rev. Robert Patterson, who had accepted a call from "The Churches of Upper and Lower Greenfield," was received by the Presbytery on the 30th of September, 1802. He returned to North East, and entered upon his pastoral work on the 31st of December, but was not ordained until September 1, 1803. The congregation were still without a building, and the ordination exercises were held in John McCord's bark house. Mr. Patterson's contract was to preach two-thirds of his time for the congregation, and the balance was spent by him in riding the country from place to place, holding services in the woods, barns, sheds and private houses. During these trips, he had numerous startling adventures, and suffered many privations. An effort was made to have him devote one-third of his time to Erie, but failed for want of an adequate subscription. A log church was built in North East in 1804, on the knool now occupied by the cemetary of that borough. Mr. Patterson preached at Springfield during that year and organized a preaching point there. The first church in the latter township was built in 1804 on the site of the cemetary at East Springfield. Mr. Patterson was unable to stand the fatigues of frontier duty, and in April, 1807, applied to the Presbytery for a release from his charge, which was granted...

[p. 255]
The first knowledge we have of Episcopalians is through a paper, a copy of which has been preserved, drawn up in 1803, and signed by fourteen citizens, agreeing to contribute the sum of $83 annually "to pay one third of Rev. Mr. Patterson's time in Erie, until a Church of England clergyman can be placed." Mr. Patterson, it will be recollected, was the Presbyterian minister in charge at North East . . .

[p. 550]
As early as 1802, at Presque Isle, or Erietown, as it was variously called, a Presbyterian congregation not then organized into a church sought ministerial services from the Presbytery of Erie, which had been organized the year before. In 1803, in connection with Upper and Lower Greenfield, it extended a call to Rev. Robert Patterson, although for some reason the call was not to have been prosecuted, or at least his services not secured...

[p. 733]
... The Presbyterian society, the oldest religious organization in Erie County, was founded in 1801, as "The Church of Lower Greenfield,"... The first regular minister was Rev. Robert Patterson, who was ordained as pastor September 1, 1802. His pastoral relation was dissolved by his own request April 22, 1807...

[p. 751]
The first settler in the township was Capt. Samuel Holliday, of Franklin County, who came on in 1796... In 1802, Isaac, Jesse, John D. and Thomas R. Miller, John Eaton and John Law, all of Franklin County, Henry Adams, of Massachusetts, John Hewitt, of Connecticut, and John Rudd, Jr.... in 1804, Samuel Rea. of Franklin County, and John Rudd, Sr., and family...

[pp. 756-757]
The churches of the township are Presbyterian, Methodist Episcopal and Christian at East Springfield... The first Presbyterian ediface was a small log structure which stood on the old portion of the cemetary grounds. A preaching post was established at Springfield in 1806, by Rev. Robert Patterson, of North East, who was then the only regularly settled minister in the country, and the building referred to was put up the same year. The congregation was organized in 1806, by Rev. J. Eaton, pastor of the church at Fairview, who assumed the same relation to the Springfield Church June 30, 1808. His relation with the Springfield Church continued until November 8, 1814. The original congregation consisted of about thirty members. Isaac Miller, James Blair and James Bruce were the first Elders...

[pp. 760-761]
The first settler within the bounds of the township was Jonathan Spaulding, who reached there from New York in the year 1795... in 1806 Lyman Jackson, from Otsego County, N.Y.; in 1810, Michael Jackson, son of Lyman, who remained but a few months, returned to New York and came back five years later...

[pp. 760-761]
The borough of Albion occupies an elevated site at the junction of Jackson's Run with the East Branch, near the Elk Creek line . . . The first settlers at Albion were Thomas Alexander, Patrick Kennedy, William Paine, Ichabod Baker, and Lyman Jackson. Michael Jackson, son of Lyman, who built the first saw mill, did not become a permanent resident until 1815, although he spent a few months there five years earlier... Lyman Jackson taught the first school. The town was long known as Jackson's Cross Roads, and the post office name has been successively Jacksonville, Juliet and Albion.

[p. 771]
The East Branch of Conneaut Creek... rises in Crawford County, just across the line. It is joined by Frazier's Run at Wellsburg, by Crane Run near Cranesville, by Mormon Run at Thornton's dam, near Albion, and by Jackson Run within the the latter borough. Mormon Run received its name because used as a place of baptism by that sect, who were once quite numerous in the vicinity...

[p. VI:20]
farmer, P.O. Cherry Hill, was born in Elk Creek Township, Erie County, Penn., January 5, 1823, son of Lyman Jackson, [Jr.,] a native of Vermont, who came to Erie County in 1805, with his father, and settled in what is now known as Albion, but at that time called Jacksonville, after the grandfather of our subject. This grandfather was a soldier of the Revolution: he raised a family of thirteen children, ten boys and three girls; seven of the former were soldiers in the war of 1812, and their father at the same time; but one of these uncles is now living, Abner, residing near Wellsville, Ohio...

[p. VI:160-161]
(deceased), moved to Erie Co., Penn., in Aug., 1805, from Otsego Co., N.Y., with a large family, his son John having preceded him several years and commenced a distillery. He took up about 350 acres of land along the lake front, on the Moravian tract. John Rudd, Sr., died in 1830, aged eighty-two. His widow and her children becoming infatuated with the Mormon cause, about the year 1839 [sic] joined the sect and went West. Thus ended one of Erie's pioneer families.















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The Presbytery of Erie was erected by the Synod of Virginia, in 1801. It was the third Presbytery that was organized, west of the Alleghany Mountains. Redstone had been organized in 1781, and Ohio in 1798. The territory of these latter Presbyterians was large, and the way opening for the rapid spread of population; and material seemed abundant for a new Presbytery. Presbyterianism was aggressive as regarded the world and Satan, and its founders here were fully up to the times and to its spirit. So they desired a new Presbytery, that the new and promising field might be more readily occupied. There was probably another reason for its formation. The territory was within the bounds of the Synod of Virginia. The journey to meetings of Synod was laborious and burdensome. The Western members must cross the mountains and be exposed not only to fatigue but actual danger in accomplishing it. Besides, the great work of keeping the institutions of religion abreast with the extending settlement of the country could be best attended to by erecting a Synod upon the new territory. This could only be done by first erecting a third Presbytery.

(Pages 28-39 of this text are not yet transcribed)

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one bed (that used by the man and his wife), and a bunk in the corner for three or four children. Mrs. McCurdy saw that her hostess was preparing the bed for the strangers, and said, 'I perceive that you are giving yourself unnecessary trouble for us. Is not that the bed which you and your husband occupy?' 'Yes,' was the reply. She said, 'Then sleep in it; all we ask is room in your house, and I will provide a bed for me and Mr. McCurdy; the floor will do for us.' The woman insisted that they should take the bed. 'Where will you sleep"' was the next question. 'O, somewhere here,' she replied. 'You shall not leave your bed for me' said Mrs. McCurdy;' my Master had not where to lay his head, and we have saddle-bags and blankets, and a house to shelter us.' By this time I found there was no room for me, so I went out to a stack where there was some straw, and made a nest under the side of it, where I slept comfortably.

"From thence they went to Lower Greenfield, now North East, and organized a church, and returned to our log meeting-house, and organized a church, and called it Middlebrook. Mr. McCurdy preached the sermon from these words, 'My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.'"

At the second meeting of Presbytery, another licentiate was taken under its care. This was William Wood (10), a licentiate of the Presbytery of Ohio. At this meeting, John and Abraham Boyd were both ordained and installed, the former June 16, 1802, as pastor of Union and Slate Lick; the latter on the following day, as pastor of Bull Creek and Middlesex. All these churches are in what is now Armstrong County, Pa.

The ordination of John Boyd was the first act of that kind performed by the Presbytery. There is one feature

                                              HISTORY.                                               41

connected with these early ordinations that is worthy of our attention. They were always accompanied by "fasting," as well as prayer, and the imposition of the hands of the Presbytery.

At a pro re nata meeting of Presbytery held at Pittsburgh, September 30, 1802, Robert Patterson, a licentiate of the Presbytery of Ohio, was received under its care, and accepted calls from the churches of Erie, and Upper and Lower Greenfield.

The next meeting was at Plaingrove, November 2, 1802, when William Wood was ordained and installed as pastor of the churches of Plaingrove and Centre, in Mercer County, Pa.

At the meeting held at Rocky Spring, April 12, 1803, Alexander Cook (12), a licentiate of the Presbytery of Ohio, was received under the care of Presbytery. At the same time it was resolved to solicit from the General Assembly a donation of religious books, to be granted to such inhabitants as may not be able to supply themselves. This appeal was successful, and the Assembly granted them the following list of books: twenty Bibles, forty copies Doddridge's "Rise and Progress," thirty Janeway's "Token," eight "Russell's Sermons," eight Boston's "Crook in the Lot," and eight Willison's " Sacramental Meditations."

This grant was followed by the following order: --

"That the Treasurer take charge of the books, pay the carriage on them, and distribute as follows: the Bibles given gratis to such poor people as need them, the others to be divided equally amongst the ministers, and by them circulated amongst such people as need them, until they are called for by Presbytery." 1

Here we find cropping out the germs of many of the

1 Min. of Pres. vol. i. p. 15.

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Boards that are now the glory and crown of the Church, missions to the Indians, missions at home, education and publication -- all are found in the bud and ready to be developed.

On the 13th of April, 1803, Presbytery received the first ordained minister into its bounds. This was Joseph Badger (11), the famous missionary from Connecticut. His life was one of romance, and yet one of sternest reality. Born and reared in poverty, struggling always with adversity and discouragements, he yet performed labor and achieved results, such as few men even of his day were able to accomplish. His famous journey from Connecticut to Ohio, during the depth of winter, with his four-horse team, sometimes on wheels and sometimes on runners, will long be remembered as one of the heroic labors that characterized the early settlements of the West. His wonderful versatility of genius, admirably adapted him to the peculiar work in which he was engaged. We was at home equally in his cabin, on horseback swimming the rivers, in the Indian wigwams preaching Christ, and in the depth of the forest, sleeping at the root of a tree, his head pillowed upon a stone like Jacob's, or hiding from beasts of prey in the tree-tops. He was a remarkable man, and lived to see fourscore and ten years.

As an instance of the demand for supplies, the following minute, made in 1803, is reproduced: "Fairview, Westfield, Poland, Warren (O.), Trumbull, Beula, Pymatuning, Conneautee, Outlet of Conneaut, Hilands Saltspring, Concord, Gravel Run, Middlebrook, Beavertown, Franklin, Titus's, Hugh McGirl's on Pithole, Andrews' on Brokenstraw, Jackson's on Conewango, Robert Miles', Major Gray's on French Creek, Mount Nebo, Sugar Creek, Smithfield, and Canfield (O.)." Here is

                                              HISTORY.                                               43

a region of country extending along Lake Erie for thirty miles, thence south to Beaver one hundred and thirty miles; and from Warren, Pa., on the east, to Warren and Canfield, Ohio, on the west, and embracing territory and points that are still, after the lapse of sixty-five years, considered as missionary ground. And at this time the whole force of the Presbytery consisted of but twelve ministers.

On the 22d of June, 1803, Alexander Cook was ordained and installed as pastor of the congregations of Slippery Rock and New Castle, formerly called Lower Neshannock. The former church was in what is now Beaver County, and the latter Lawrence County, Pa. On the same day Robert Johnston (14), a licentiate of the Presbytery of Ohio, was received under the care of Presbytery. On the 31st of August following, Robert Patterson was ordained and installed as pastor of the congregations of Upper and Lower Greenfield. These churches are now known, the former as Middlebrook and the latter North East. They are in Erie County, Pa., and at present in the New School connection..

Mr. Patterson was the first settled minister in Erie County. He took frequent missionary tours, in the region along the shore of Lake Erie. A brief journal, kept during one of these tours, will convey some idea of the character of the work: --

"Saturday, Nov. 5, 1803. Set off from the place of my residence, at the mouth of the Twelve Mile Creek, below Presque Isle. Rode thirty miles to the house of Thomas Miles, on Elk Creek.

"Nov. 6, Sabbath. Rode nine miles to Lexington, on the Great Conneaut. Met this morning, at different places on the road, one man carrying a hoe, shovel, and basket, going into his potato field; another carrying a

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log chain; and a third a cutting knife. Besides these met several others on their return from a Saturday night's lodging in a tavern, after having attended at the office of a justice, whose custom it is to transact law business on Saturdays, and so late that those who are obliged to appear before him are under the necessity, some with and a few against their will, of staying all night in a place where drunkenness, profanity, and obscenity too frequently introduce the Sabbath.

"Preached at the house of --- ---, from John iii. 19, 20, to eighteen hearers, some not very attentive, and no appearance of solemnity. Rode in the evening three miles to the house of C. Woods and Dr. Hastings, near the Great Conneaut.

"Nov. 7, Monday. Preached from Joshua xxiv. 15, to eleven persons, attentive and serious. Rode in the evening three or four miles to John Saton's, near Great Conneaut.

"Nov. 8, Tuesday. Rode eight or nine miles to Samuel Holliday's on the lake, near the mouth of Crooked Creek. Preached from Matt. iii. 9, to seven persons.

"Nov. 9, Wednesday. Rode eleven miles to Widow McCreary's, near Walnut Creek. Preached from Acts iii. 19, to twenty persons. Received $1.37. Rode in the evening two miles to Mr. McCoy's.

"Nov. 10, Thursday. Rode twenty miles home.

"Nov. 12, Saturday. Set out for Waterford, alias Le Boeuf, on French Creek, distant twenty-two miles, the road solitary, swampy, and in some places covered with deep snow * * * * Towards evening, when within five or six miles of my destination and near Le Boeuf Creek, was led astray by the devious track of two travelers, who had wandered themselves, and were the cause of my wandering * * * * Two or three

                                              HISTORY.                                               45

hours after night, came to a watercourse, seen by snow-light, which was too broad and miry to cross. Prepared to pass the night as well as I could. All in a perspiration, my feet wet with walking and wading, for the place did not admit of riding, hungry and fatigued, I lay down on the slushy snow, somewhat afraid of wild beasts, but more of perishing with the chilling cold, though it did not freeze. About midnight the cold in my feet became excessive. Rose and walked for about an hour on a path which I made in the snow for the purpose. My feet were somewhat relieved from the cold. Lay down again and passed the night sometimes awake but mostly asleep.

"Nov. 13, Sabbath. In the morning, after having spent eleven or twelve hours in this dreary place, and after having suffered severer hardships than I ever before endured in traveling, and feeling some sense of my obligation to God for His preserving mercy, took my track backward, and between nine and ten o'clock reached the house of John Bundle. Preached from Acts ii. 38, to ten persons.

"Nov. 14, Monday. Rode eighteen miles home.

"Nov. 16, Wednesday. Rode ten miles to the house of John Culver. Preached to six persons -- home in the evening.

"Nov. 19, Saturday. Rode seventeen miles to Adam Reed's, on French Creek.

"Nov. 20, Sabbath. Rode nine miles to Matthew Gray's, and preached from Eph. vi. 4, to eighteen persons.

"Nov. 21, Monday. Rode nine miles to Adam Reed's. Lectured to twenty persons on the parable of the sower, Matt. xiii. Received one dollar. In the evening rode seven miles to Thomas McGahan's.

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"Nov. 22, Tuesday. Rode ten miles to Wilson Smith's, in Waterford, alias Le Boeuf.

"Nov. 23, Wednesday. Preached in the town at the house of Esquire Vincent, to eleven persons, from Acts xvii. 18. Rode in the evening eight miles to John Philips'.

"Nov. 24, Thursday. Set out about sunrise, having appointed to preach at the house of P. Clooke, distant eleven or twelve miles. The road, however, was so extremely bad with mud, frost, and snow, and the day wet, that at twelve o'clock I found that I could not reach the place until two or three hours after the time appointed; and not being well since the night I lay in the snow, rode home from John Philips', seventeen or eighteen miles.

"Nov. 26, Saturday. Rode twenty miles to the house of James McMahan, living in a new settlement in the State of New York, situated about Chautauque Creek, that empties into Lake Erie.

"Nov. 27, Sabbath. Preached on 1 Cor. iv. at Widow McHenry's, to fifteen grown persons and a greater number of children. Received one dollar.

"Nov. 28. Monday. Rode twenty miles from James McMahan's house.

This journal gives a mere sample of the every-day labors of these early missionaries. As a general thing the study and preparation were confined to the saddle and the brief tarrying at the log-cabins by the wayside, whilst the preaching was often of daily occurrence -- in the forest, in the dwelling-house, or wherever a few people could be assembled.

On the 19th day of October, 1803, Robert Johnston was ordained and installed as pastor of the congregations

                                              HISTORY.                                               47

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                                              HISTORY.                                               51

seemed disposed to cultivate friendly relations with them. A minute was passed advising the ministers to exchange professional services with them, and the people to commune with them in their churches, This grew out of the celebrated "Plan of Union" entered into between the General Assembly and the General Association of Connecticut in 1801 and 1802.

In April, 1805, John McPherrin (16) was received from the Presbytery of Redstone, and soon after became pastor of the congregations of Concord, Muddy Creek, and Harmony, in Butler County, Pa.  

In October, 1806, Presbytery received Johnston Eaton (20), a licentiate of the Presbytery of Ohio, under its care, and on the following month ordained Benjamin Boyd, and installed him as pastor of the congregations of Trumbull, Beula, and Pymatuning. The first two of these congregations were in Ohio.

In April, 1807, Cyrus Biggs (18), a licentiate of the Presbytery of Ohio, was received under the care of Presbytery, and at the same meeting Robert Patterson was released from the charge of Upper and Lower Greenfield in Erie County, Pa. At this meeting also, James Boyd (21), the fourth of the Boyd brothers, was licensed to preach the gospel.

In July, 1807, Robert Lee (5) was dismissed, on the ground of ill health, from the pastoral charge of Rocky Spring and Amity.

About this time the matter of a division of Presbytery was first agitated. The minute recorded is in these words: "Presbytery agreed to petition the Synod at its next meeting to erect Rev. John McPherrin, Thomas E. Hughes, William Wick, James Satterfield, Robert Lee, John Boyd, Abraham Boyd, William Wood, Robert Johnston, Alexander Cook, and Nicholas

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                                      BIOGRAPHICAL.                                       233

On the 2d day of January, 1787, Mr. Cook was united in marriage to Miss Alizannah Adams, of Abingdon, Md. They had ten children, three only of whom arrived at years of maturity. Mrs. Cook died at Slippery Rock, Beaver County, Pa., June 6, 1805. Her death took place on a Fast Day, whilst her husband was at church. He was afterwards married to Miss Clark, of Beaver County, Pa.

In person Mr. Cook was rather below the medium height, compactly built, dark complexion, dark brown eyes, with a sedate expression of countenance, generally, yet with a vein of mirth, cropping out in times of relaxation. He had a good faculty of rendering himself agreeable to the young.


Robert Patterson was the son of Rev. Joseph and Jane (Moak) Patterson. He was descended from a family illustrious for its patriotism, and what is better, for piety and zeal for the service of the Lord. The father of Robert Patterson was born in the north of Ireland, in the year 1752. His father, though but a lad at the time, was at the famous siege of Derry; and the sufferings to which the Patterson family were subjected in consequence of this siege, were most severe and distressing. This branch of the family emigrated from Scotland to Ireland, in consequence of the terrible persecutions, carried on by Claverhouse, under Charles II. The grandfather of Robert Patterson was the son of John, the founder of the Irish branch of the family. 1

1 Sprague's Annals of the American Pulpit.


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Rev. Joseph Patterson, the father of Robert, was licensed to preach the gospel in 1788. He was a most useful and laborious minister, and died at Pittsburgh, Pa., in 1832.

Robert Patterson, the subject of this sketch, was born at Stillwater, New York, on the 1st day of April, 1773, near the spot afterwards celebrated as the field of one of the most severely contested battles of the Revolution. Not long after his birth, his parents removed to Germantown, Pa. The battle of Germantown occurred during the sojourn of the family at that place, and Mr. Patterson, then in his fifth year, distinctly remembered many of its scenes. After a brief residence in York County, the family removed to the West, and took up their abode in Washington County, Pa.

In the spring of 1791, Robert Patterson commenced his academical studies at the Cannonsburg Academy, then just opened. He recited the first lesson that was heard in connection with that institution teacher and pupil seated under the shade of a tree, on the banks of the now classic Chartiers. After prosecuting his studies for three years in the Academy, he went east and entered the senior class of the University of Pennsylvania, where he graduated in the fall of 1795. On his way to Philadelphia, the journey there being made on horseback, he met the forces sent out by the Government to quell the Whiskey Insurrection.

Mr. Patterson had a great thirst for knowledge. He was not content with his collegiate course, and so lingered in the halls of his Alma Mater after his graduation. He was employed for nearly five years as tutor in the University, at the same time prosecuting, still further, his studies in the languages and higher mathematics.


                                      BIOGRAPHICAL.                                       235

He returned to the residence of his father, who was then pastor of the Raccoon Church, in 1800, and on the 30th day of April, 1801, was licensed to preach the gospel by the Presbytery of Ohio. His theological studies had been prosecuted in part with Rev. Ashbel Green, D. D., while he was connected with the University, and in part under the direction of Dr. McMillan.

The next year after his licensure, Mr. Patterson took a tour over the destitute region of what was afterward the territory of the Presbytery of Erie. He visited the shore of Lake Erie, preached at various places, and finally was encouraged to think of settling in the congregations of Erie and Upper and Lower Greenfield, These latter churches were afterwards known as Middlebrook and North East. Rev. Elisha McCurdy had preceded him here, and soon after Mr. Patterson's first visit, he, in company with Joseph Stockton (4), James Satterfield (6), and his own famous "praying elder," Philip Jackson, organized the churches of Upper Greenfield (Middlebrook) and Lower Greenfield (North East).

At a pro re nata meeting of the Presbytery of Erie, held at Pittsburgh, on the 30th of September, 1802, during the sessions of the Synod of Pittsburgh, Mr. Patterson was received under its care. At the same meeting calls were presented for his pastoral labors from the congregations of Erie and Upper and Lower Greenfield, of which he declared his acceptance. Acts iii. 19 was assigned him as the subject for a sermon as part of trials for ordination. At a meeting of Presbytery held at Lower Greenfield, or North East, on the 1st day of September, 1803, the congregation of Erie, having from some cause declined entering into the


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arrangement, Mr. Patterson was ordained and installed as pastor of the congregations of Upper and Lower Greenfield. Here he labored faithfully and with the practice of much self-denial until the 22d day of April, 1807, when at his own request the pastoral relation was dissolved, During his labors in this field he resided at North East, and took frequent missionary tours up and down the Lake, and for a time preached a part of the time at a place called Portland. A wide-spreading fir-tree is still pointed out by an aged citizen of the neighborhood, as having been planted by Mr. Patterson's own hand.

In April, 1807, he accepted an invitation to take charge of the Pittsburgh Academy, now the Western University of Pennsylvania. During the three years he presided over this institution, he numbered among his pupils many who afterwards filled prominent public stations, and who often spoke in grateful terms of his care and faithfulness as an instructor.

In October, 1812, Mr. Patterson was dismissed from the Presbytery of Erie, to connect himself with the Presbytery of Redstone, From 1810 to 1836 he was engaged in secular business, book-selling, and at times the manufacture of paper, having been one of the proprietors of one of the first paper mills established in the West. This business was carried on extensively for nearly a quarter of a century, bringing him into extensive public notice, yet not always resulting in success. Indeed, he suffered many severe reverses, yet was always esteemed a man of most undoubted probity and honor.

During the greater portion of this time, he was stated supply of the Hilands Church, situated about seven miles from Pittsburgh, and in the bounds of the Presbytery

                                      BIOGRAPHICAL.                                       237

of Ohio. The people of this charge have often remembered his faithful ministrations; and the recollection of the relationship he had sustained to them, with its many pleasing associations, was a theme of grateful acknowledgment on his part, to the latest period of his life.

In 1840, Mr. Patterson removed to the country a short distance from Pittsburgh. The infirmities of age were now upon him, and he ceased to preach regularly, yet he was always ready, when physical strength would permit, to preach in neighboring churches when they were vacant. For many years increasing spirituality seemed to characterize his mind. The things unseen of the eye of sense absorbed his attention and filled his mind, as was obvious from his reading and conversation. Scarcely a friend or even a stranger paused for a moment at his door, without having their attention called to the things of religion. Rev. Richard Lea who knew him well, remarks that he did not remember a single conversation with him for many years, were the interview long or short, in which the subject of the soul's great interest had not been introduced. In the bosom of his own family, where he was ever the most tender of husbands, and the most affectionate of fathers, and in the enjoyment of that domestic intercourse which had for him a peculiar charm, his spirituality of character and heavenly-mindedness, shone forth with brightest lustre.

His last illness was brief. His disease was dysentery. It assumed an alarming character about a week preceding his departure. When all hope of recovery was precluded, his brother Joseph said to him, "You will soon he with that Jesus whom you have loved so long." He smiled a pleased assent. His brother then remarking


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that "God showed the same mercy in breaking up as in building up a family," he replied that "We are too prone to regard only one of God's attributes -- his mercy; forgetting that he was infinite in them all -- his justice as well as his mercy." Other remarks showed that whilst tenderly mindful of those around, his thoughts were with that Saviour he was so soon to see.

On Sabbath afternoon he lapsed into a state of almost lethargy, which continued with little interruption until Tuesday evening, September 5, 1854, when without a quivering muscle, or a heaving sigh, he passed away from earth.

There are perhaps few to whom could be applied with greater propriety the words which were the last he ever read, when he led for the last time the devotions of his family, on the Wednesday preceding his decease: "For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself." Phil. iii. 20, 21.

In August, 1801, Mr. Patterson was united in marriage to Miss Jean, daughter of Col. John Canon, the proprietor of Cannonsburg. They had seven children, five daughters, and two sons.

The following paper from the pen of Rev. Richard Lea, will throw light upon his character:
"Rev. Robert Patterson, son of Joseph, was like his father in many respects: rather short and heavy, very lively and good natured. He was not a student, but a good scholar; long known in Pittsburgh as a bookseller, but preaching for twenty-five years, nearly every Sabbath,


                                      BIOGRAPHICAL.                                       239

in Hilands Church. He had labored previously in Erie County, Pa. He lived many years, in a hearty old age, after his resignation as pastor.

"I never knew one so remarkable for under-valuing self. In judicatories he spoke impulsively, and if replied to pointedly, none enjoyed it more than himself. He would catechize a young man's performance earnestly, and ending with, 'It is too much like my own performances;' or 'It is very poor indeed, but far better than I could do myself.' The severest thing he ever said was, 'Moderator, as a performance, that is more logical and accurate than anything of my own, but I never did preach such a Christless thing. I never will vote for a sermon that has not the slightest perfume of the Rose of Sharon.'

"He often told with great gusto, the following, which was rather at his own expense: --

"'I was riding on horseback through the mud, seven miles to Hilands, to preach on Sabbath morning. A traveller overtook me. I told him he must be fond of violating the Sabbath to travel over such awful roads.

"'And what are you doing, friend?

"'O, I'm going to church.'

"'Do you think it makes much difference to the horse ? Couldn't you get preaching nearer?'

"The church was soon reached, and I said, 'Suppose you come and hear preaching; it will rest both you and your horse.'

"'Who is the preacher?'

"'One Patterson.'

"'Did he preach in Erie once?'


"'Then I won't stop -- he is the dryest old stick I ever heard.'

240                                   PRESBYTERY  OF  ERIE.                                  

"His own sermons were all extempore, and very much taken up with the relative duties of husbands and wives, parents and children. He abounded in anecdotes, sure to speak of Jesus; often, with tears, of his mother.

"The text he often parsed -- spoke of nouns and verbs, etc., often exclaiming, 'O, the sweetness of the personal pronouns. Any one can say, a Saviour, the Saviour; it takes a Christian to say, my Lord, my Saviour.'

"Every one wished to lodge him, at Presbytery. He would put all at ease by saying, 'What a bountiful meal God has given you for us.' 'Put as much cream into my coffee as though you kept a cow, and as much sugar as if you had a sugar camp.'

"'Make your tea strong, and weaken with cream and sugar.'

"'Madam! What a nice big boy you have! Give him to Christ, and ask him to make him a missionary.'

"To a lady who asked him what school she should send her daughter to, he replied, 'That one that has the most religion in it.'

"'Don't send your boy into the world until he has found Christ. But if he will go, follow him with prayers and tears. Give him and God no rest, until he is converted.'"


There are many remarkable incidents connected with the life of this servant of God. His old age, his long period of active labor, and his success in winning souls to Christ, make his history interesting and instructive. There is an incident connected with his dawn of life that is worthy of record. "When he was an infant ...

Chronology of Robert Patterson, Sr. (1773-1854)

1791-93  First student at Cannonsburg Academy, Washington Co., PA

1794-95  Student University of Pennsylvania, (graduated fall, 1795)

1795-99  Employed as a tutor at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia

1800-01  Studied divinity under his father, Racoon Church, Washington Co., PA Robert Patterson, Sr. had previously studied diviniy with Presbyterian teachers, the Rev. Ashbel Green, D. D. and the Rev. Dr. McMillan of Philadelphia.

1801 (April)  Licensed to preach the gospel by the Presbytery of Ohio (in PA)

1801 (Aug.)  Married Jean Canon, dau. of Col. John Canon, proprietor of Cannonsburg

1802-07  A licensed (later ordained) Presbyterian missionary pastor in Erie Co., PA He was received as a licensed pastor for the Presbytery of Ohio's mission in the Presbytery of Erie, on September 30, 1802.

1803 (Aug.)  Ordained and installed as pastor of the congregations of Upper and Lower Greenfield, (now Middlebrook & North East Presbyterian churches) in Erie Co., PA

1807-10  Principal of Pittsburgh Academy; instructor along with John H. Hopkins, etc. Also served as pastor a pastor in Pittsburgh and later for Hilands Presbyterian Church, seven miles north of Pittsburgh, (1807?-54).

1810-12  Partner with John H. Hopkins in the bookselling firm of Patterson & Hopkins, located at the SE corner of Wood & 4th streets in Pittsburgh. This bookshop firm undertook some limited publishing ventures, probably using the printing press of Patterson's cousin, Silas Engles (a prominent PA printer. Patterson & Hopkins' last known publication was "The Honest Man's Almanack, for the Year 1813" (advertised for sale on Oct. 22, 1812)

1811-15  The printing firm of S. Engles & Co. printers, was located on Wood St., between 3d and 4th streets. This location placed it adjacent to the Pittsburgh bookselling firm of Patterson & Hopkins, as well as the successor business of R. &. J. Patterson.

1812-17  Robert was partner with his brother, Joseph Patterson, Jr. in the bookselling firm of R. &. J. Patterson. The partnership began on or before Nov. 5, 1812. It seems likely that Robert Patterson, Sr. operated as the firm's manager and that Joseph Patterson, Jr. was the financier of the partnership. It is possible that Joseph's role in the fime began to diminish a couple of years after its extablishment. He eventually moved away to Philadelphia and was evidently not especially close to Robert in later years.

1812 (Nov.)  James Lambdin dies in Pittsburgh. His son Jonathan Harrison Lambdin becomes a ward of Robert Patterson, Sr. and begins to work in the R. &. J. Patterson bookstore. It is possible that the young J. Harrison Lambdin also occasionally worked for Silas Engles.

1812 (Dec.)  A half-share of Oliver Evans' Pittsburgh Steam Mill was offered for sale. It is possible that the firm of R. & J. Patterson purchased a half-share in the mill's operation -- alternatively, the Patterson's may have contracted with some other mill owner, to begin producing paper in Pittsburgh. Both Evans' and the Pattersons' operations were advertised in the Pittsburgh "Mercury" of Dec. 24, 1812.

1814 (Feb.)  The printing firm S. Engles & Co., Printers was dissolved. Evidently Engles then lost one or more business associates. He continued on as "Silas Engles, Printer."

1814 (summer)  It is probable that sometime prior to the summer of 1814, the Pittsburgh firm of R. & J. Patterson obtained possession of a book bindary, or at least book binding equipment. In the Pittsburgh "Mercury" of Aug. 10, 1814, the Patterson brothers solicited "journeyman book binders" in conjunction with the Lexington, Ky. firm of Wm. Essex & Son. Robert P. Du Bois, a former employee of Robert and Joseph Patterson, recalled in 1882 that the Pattersons had under their "control" a "book-store on Fourth Street," as well as "a book-bindary," a "job-office" printing establishment "under the name of Butler & Lambdin" and "a steam paper-mill on the Allegheny (under the name of R. & J. Patterson)." Du Bois did not say WHEN the Pattersons acquired this "book-bindary," but perhaps it was in 1813-14. The Butler & Lambdin printing business was not established until 1817. Presumably it was an independent company that owned a press, but under contract to the Pattersons.

1814 (Nov.)  From this time forward, the bookstore and publishing business in Pittsburgh, formerly called R. &. J. Patterson, was referred to as "R. Patterson, Bookseller" or as "R. Patterson, Bookseller & Stationer." This name change probably indicates a lessening commitment to the partnership by Joseph Patterson, Jr., who seems to have abandoned all connection with the Pittsburgh business during the fall of 1814.

1815 (Oct.)  A fire broke out on east side of Wood street, between 3rd and 4th streets, in Pittsburgh.

1815 (Nov.)  Following the Oct. 1815 fire, the firm of R. Patterson moved temporarily to the house of Thomas Baird, esq. on Fourth street, thirty yards from Wood street.

1815 (Dec.)  R. Patterson's Wholesale & Retail Book and Stationery Store and paper warehouse was doing business in its new location on 4th street, near Wood street. The business continued operations "in Market and 4th Streets," until at least the end of 1816.

1815-19  Following the Oct. 1815 fire, the firm of Silas Engles, Printer, was temporarily relocated on Wood St. above Diamond Alley. Early in 1815 Engles moved to Liberty Street, "nearly opposite Fifth Street," where he remained in business for the next four years.

1818-23  Beginning about Jan. 1, 1818, Robert was partner with his former legal ward, J. Harrison Lambidn, in the firm of "R. Patterson & Lambdin, Booksellers & Stationers, Fourth street, Pittsburgh." Patterson advertised: "I intend retiring from an active concern in the business, it will of course devolve entirely on J. H. Lambdin, in whom I place the most unlimited confidence, his integrity being established by the test of seven years, during which he has transacted my business." However Patterson evidently remained involved in the management of the new partnership, at least to a small extent, until 1823.

1817  The printing firm of Butler & Lambdin was established in Pittsburgh, with John B. Butler as senior partner and J. Harrison Lambdin the junior partner. Butler & Lambdin did printing work for the publishing firm of R. Patterson, Bookseller & Stationer during 1817. From 1818 forward, Butler & Lambdin did printing work for the firm of R. Patterson & Lambdin.

1818 (spring?)  James Reid Lambdin, brother of J. Harrison Lambdin, went to work in the book-store of Patterson and Lambdin, shortly after the retirement of Mr. Patterson.

1818 (May)  J. Harrison Lambdin married Miss Rachael Wilbur of New Jersey

1819-27  The printing firm of Silas Engles, Printer, was located on Diamond Alley, behind the Court House

1823  It appears that Patterson & Lambdin took over "Towne's Manufactory" at the corner of 3rd and Wood Streets, and there continued the previous store's sales of paper wall hangings, manufactured with paper from the Patterson Steam Mill. The move to the new location was made, perhaps, early in 1823, just before Patterson & Lambdin broke up. John Towne was a business associate of James Reid Lambdin, and operated "a lottery and exchange office" at the corner of 3rd Street and Wood Street, within "Towne's Manufactory."

1823 (Feb.)  "The partnership heretofore existing between Robert Patterson & Jonathan H. Lambdin, trading under the firm of R. Patterson & Lambdin is hereby dissolved."

1823 (Apr.)  The firm of R. Patterson & Lambdin, having gone bankrupt, its assets were put into the receivership of M. B. Lowrie, Henry Holdship and Thomas Cooper, "The Assignees of R. Patterson & Lambdin." Among the properties sold in April was Patterson's steam paper mill. Since Lambdin dissolved the partnership with Patterson, it seems likely that the final weeks and months of the business were not amicable ones. James Reid Lambdin says in his "Journal": "my brother's [affairs in 1822] were becoming quite embarassing. Patterson & Lambdin, who were then largely engaged in the manufacture of paper... [suffered] loss without any insurance. This caused increased trouble in their pecuniary affairs."

1823-24  Apparently Robert Patterson, Sr. acted as Henry Holdship's agent in a store located near 4th and Market streets, while J. Harrison Lambdin was Holdship's agent at another store (or "stand") located at NW Third and Wood streets. If so, Lambdin labored in that capactity no more than a few months. On Jan. 20, 1824 Lambdin quit his job as Holdship's agent. Rev. Robert Patterson, Sr. seems to have continued as Holdship's agent, at least until early 1826. At some point in the late 1820s or early 1830s, Patterson took on Alex Ingram, Jr. as his partner in the books sales agency. Details regarding the Patterson & Ingram agency are unknown.

1825 (Aug.)  J. Harrison Lambdin died at Pittsburgh.

1827 (July)  Silas Engles died at Pittsburgh.

1839 (July ) "R. Patterson, Agent," and partner with Mr. A. Ingram, Jr., "disposed of his interest in the firm of Patterson & Ingram." This action apparently was Patterson's final retirement from the book sales business. Alex Ingram, Jr. was then publisher of the Pittsburgh Gazette.

1854  Robert Patterson, Sr. died near Pittsburgh

University of Texas of the Permian Basin Library
MARION on-line catalog system:
Patterson, Robert, 1773-1854
Source data found:

* Woodbridge, W.C. System of universal geography, 1833: cover (R. Patterson)
* The art of domestick happiness and other poems, 1817: t.p. (The Recluse, author of
The independency of the mind, affirmed)
* RLIN database, 10/11/91 (hdg.: Patterson, Robert, 1773-1854)
* PP files (Robert Patterson; bookseller in Pittsburgh, Pa.)
* Luckhardt, V.E. Notable printers of early Pittsburgh, 1949
(unpubl. thesis avail. online via the Spalding Studies Library as of 5.3.2002):
p. 32, etc. (Robert Patterson, 1775 [sic]-1854; b. Apr. 1, 1773; d. Sept. 5, 1854;
wrote under the pen name of "The Recluse")
* Buck, J.S. The planting of civilization in Western Pennsylvania, 1939: p. 381
("The Recluse," the Reverend Robert Patterson; in 1817, publ. under his pseud.
a book of collected poems; was principal of Pittsburgh Academy, 1807-1810,
proprietor of a bookstore and paper manufactory, 1810-1836
& preacher at Hilands Church)

Starrett, Agnes Lynch
"Through one hundred and fifty years: the University of Pittsburgh"
xvi, 581, [1] p. : incl. front. plates, ports., 2 facsim. ; 25 cm.
Pittsburgh : University of Pittsburgh press, 1937.
Subject(s): University of Pittsburgh -- History.


Transcriber's Comments:
Robert Patterson, Sr. (1773-1854)

(under construction)

  (under construction)

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