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Sheakleyville Borough

Mercer County, Pennsylvania

Sheakleyville Borough Hall is located at 3213 Perry Highway, Sheakleyville PA 16151.
Phone: 724‑253‑3495.

Beginnings [1]

The site of the borough of Sheakleyville was originally owned by William Byers. As mentioned elsewhere, Mr. Byers was the first sheriff of Mercer county, being commissioned for that office in 1803. His selection for that office caused him to move to the newly founded county seat, and in moving he sold his land to John Sheakley, the founder of the well-known Sheakley family. Directly north of a spring on this land John Sheakley erected a commodious hewn-log house, which was near the Indian trail leading from Pittsburgh to Erie. During the war of 1812 this trail was designated as a military road by the state, and in 1816 this route was adopted for the Pittsburgh and Erie turnpike, which was opened for travel about two years later. On this highway Moses Sheakley, a son of the pioneer settler, built a large frame tavern in 1820, its location being half way between Mercer and Meadville.

A map of Mercer county shows that Sheakleyville is the center of a number of converging roads. From which it is apparent that the Sheakley tavern early became a center for a considerable surrounding country, and thus in time became the nucleus of a village.

Georgetown was the first name applied to this place. It was called so in honor of George Sheakley. The name was adopted at the celebration of the Fourth of July, 1822, which may be taken as the date of the formal establishment of the town.

Sheakleyville was incorporated as a borough March 11, 1851. The history of the present name was written at that time. The citizens having become dissatisfied with the name, it was proposed to make the name "Exchangeville," and by that name in fact the village was sometimes called. Mr. Sheakley was naturally desirous of the old name being retained, and through his influence with the legislature a neat trick was turned upon those who had decided upon Exchangeville as the proper name. In the bill providing for incorporation of the borough, as first drafted, the name Exchangeville appeared, but somewhere in its progress from committee to the final vote, the word Sheakley was substituted for the first two syllables, and as finally passed the bill for incorporation provided for the incorporation of the "borough of Sheakleyville." The disappointed citizens had no recourse, and in time all became reconciled to the new name.

The post office has likewise borne several names. When the post office was established there in June, 1830, with Joseph Culbertson as postmaster, the office was called Culbertson's. It went by that name until January, 1850, when the post office department accepted Exchangeville for the name. After the legal adoption of the present name, the post office was changed to correspond in December, 1853. A special distinction attaches to the Sheakleyville post office. In 1869 Mrs. Mary E. McCoy was appointed postmistress. Through forty years she has remained faithfully at her duties. At the present time, so far as known, she holds the record as the oldest incumbent of a post office in the United States, no other postmaster or postmistress having served forty years continuously.

  1. White, J. G., editor, A Twentieth Century History of Mercer County Pennsylvania, The Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago, 1909