Bellvale 100 Years Ago

The following excerpt from the "Bellvale Rising Star" was written in 1889 so it was actually describing Bellvale around the years of the late 1700's to early 1800's. Refer to the map to help locate where these buildings were because many of the reference places may not be familiar or no longer exist. Now take a trip way back in time.........

" At this time, the late Nathaniel Jones and Thomas Burt were severing their business connection, and were succeeded by Joseph Brooks in the wool carding and spinning business, which was soon enlarged to a cloth manufacturing industry by the Brooks family. At this period, Benjamin Burt owned and occupied the dwelling and property now(1889) know as the Houston village property, he also owned the sawmill and farm property now(1889) owned by Andrew Houston. Stephen A. Burt owned the present Burt homestead and the store business, established by him in 1815, and had purchased of Samuel Ketchum, the father of Mrs. Benjamin Burt and Mrs. Joseph Sayer, the hillside farm still in the family name. The grist mill, established in 1760 by Daniel Burt, was at this period and for many years subsequent owned and managed by James Burt.

The next building to the west on the Warwick road was the school house, near the site of the present one, and the next was the home of Daniel Forshee, now(1889) the home of Henry W. Houston. The Forshees were weavers of carpets and those old fashioned bed coverlets. On the John W. Houston corner, was the old shingle house with a blacksmith shop across the way, occupied and run by Boss(Isaac) Forshee. The next resident was Hezekiah Miller on the now D.M. Hunt place, he was the cooper for this part of town.

Leaving the old Burt corner and going north, (Iron Forge Rd.) the first house was a tenement belonging to the woolen mill and enlarged for a home for the Brooks family. Then came a tenement on the Wilson tract, now(1889) the W.S. Clark property. The next was the Wilson home, first occupied by Ananais Wilson and afterwards by his son Samuel. Ananias removed to the property opposite the church purchased of Stephen Hall. There was, at this period, a dwelling near the house of J.C. Minturn occupied as a tenement by the floating population. At this time John Bradner, the father of the late Colvin Bradner, had purchased and occupied the farm property, first on the Greewood Lake road, now(1889) owned by Miss Mary E. Bradner. The property now owned by William G. Mann was part of the Benjamin Burt tract and was probably used as a home for the man who ran the saw mill. At this time, the Cline property was owned by the Noble family, and occupied by the Garthwait's. At this period, the above district was covered by about fifteen dwellings, at the present time(1889) the same district only includes about forty dwellings."