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Historical Localities

Hardly more than half a mile south of the McMichael Lookout, and in full view from its gallery is the spot where in August, 1763, a company of 114 white men under Captain William Patterson met and fought with two bands of Indians that were thought to be on the warpath to the settlements to pillage and massacre. Ten pages of Meginness' History of The West Branch Valley give as full an account of this affair as could in our day be gleaned. Various relics of the conflict were found in after years, — one being a ramrod that was lodged up in a tree, indicating that one of the combatants may have been so excited that he forgot to remove the rod from his gun before firing — besides a number of iron tomahawks and other articles. It may be mentioned in this connection that J. Potter Patterson, the first editor of the first newspaper published in Muncy, (The Muncy Telegraph), who died in 1835, and whose body lies in the old Episcopal burying ground on Washington Street, was a grandson of Captain Patterson.

Many other spots of historic interest can be seen from the Lookout, and also from the Mensch residence at the foot of the Bald Eagle, as the location of the famous Warrior Spring along the water-edge of the river, hardly 50 rods above the east end of the Reading Railroad bridge; the site of Fort Brady — several houses and a stockade around them built by Captain John Brady for the protection of the families of the neighborhood; the bank near the mouth of Glade Run, only about six rods east of the old canal culvert, where John Scudder, in April, 1770, built his cabin, with no floor but the bare earth and without a window of glass, where his daughter Mary, the first white child in the county, was born-and near which Scudder's apple tree still stood in the summer of 1874, and measured eleven feet and seven inches in circumference, several feet above the ground, and was still bearing fruit; the spot on Wolf Run, hardly more than three rods below the bridge on the road from Muncy to Williamsport, where the bold pioneer, Captain John Brady, was waylaid and killed by the Indians in April, 1779; and other localities of interest to the student of Muncy Valley history.

On the north side, just behind the end of the Bald Eagle Mountain, but not in sight from the Lookout, is Hartly Hall Station, on the Reading Railroad, near which, a few rods from the river bank, is what yet remains of the Indian sepulchral mound that has always been an object of great interest, and from which many relics and bones have from time to time been removed. It was long ago estimated to have contained from two hundred to three hundred skeletons. (See Now and Then, Vol. 3, page 205). And but a short distance west of the station the railroad, in a deep cut, passes directly through the site of Fort Muncy, a defensive work erected by the government, and where troops were posted at different times. It was constructed just a short time before the "Big Runaway" in 1778, and was the most important stronghold west of Fort Augusta. (See History of the West Branch Valley, pp. 483 and 638). It was repaired in 1782 by Capt. Thomas Robinson. And close to the station is the old graveyard, the oldest in the county, in which Captain Brady and a number of the first settlers are having their last sleep. It is believed that the first interment in the ground was that of William Beaver, who was shot by accident on the morning of September, 1769, by a companion hunter.

  • Gernerd, J. M. M., The Muncy Valley: Snap-Shots of Scenery, Geology and History, 1909, Press of the Gazette and Bulletin, Williamsport PA
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