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Beale Township

Juniata County, Pennsylvania

Beale Township, PO Box 826, Port Royal PA 17082.
Phone: 717‑436‑8397.


Brief History [1]

Several unsuccessful attempts were made to erect a new township from Milford and Turbett before Beale was finally formed by the division of Milford in 1843. As early as 1820, nine petitions signed by two hundred and eighteen citizens of Milford and Turbett, praying for the appointment of viewers to lay off a new township, were presented to the court. From what source the opposition to the new township came or why the petitions were not granted, is not recorded but it was not formed until February 8, 1843, when the viewers, William Dunn, of Fayette, Thomas Stinson, of Walker and William Sharon, of Fayette, reported the following line, "along a public road, first laid out in 1768, from Tuscarora Creek to a point near Shade Mountain and along the top of that mountain to the Tuscarora Township line." By an act of March 15, 1853, the farm of John Woodward, in Milford Township, was annexed to Beale. The township was named after one of the oldest families in the county and one long prominent in its civic affairs and business enterprises..

That squatters came into the territory now comprising Beale Township before the lands in the Juniata Valley had been purchased from the Indians is evident from the old agreement, or deed, dated June 1, 1854, and reproduced under the history of Academia. The instrument is witnessed by Samuel and Charles Kenny and William Beale, who must have been squatters in the vicinity. James Kennedy and Robert Pollock had also established homes in the immediate neighborhood of Academia, where the transaction referred to above took place.

One of the first land warrants was issued to Alexander Maginty on February 3, 1755, for 312 acres. Others who warranted land in that year were: James Williams, Thomas Freeman, James McMahan, Samuel Brice, John Woods and John Irwin. In 1762 warrants were issued to Ralph Sterrett, John McMahan, Samuel Finley and others for lands in what is now Beale Township. In 1767 James Scott, Abraham DeWitt, Joseph Scott, David Bowel (or Beale), Matthew Mateer and others. Clement Horrell, David McNair, Samuel Fear, Robert Walker, the Pomeroys, the Beales, Robert Campbell, Thomas Harris and William Reed had all located in the township before the Revolutionary War.

  1. National Historical Association, Inc., A History of the Juniata Valley, Vol I, pp 175-176, 1936, Harrisburg