This month my sister and I took a trip back east to do genealogy. Our previous trip to Milford, PA, was 25 years ago. This time we drove up from York, PA where we were staying with our nephew. The last leg of the drive was along the lush Delaware River that divides Pennsylvania from New Jersey. It was a lovely day. Not a lot of traffic and we we able to enjoy our surroundings.
The deep green vegetation lined the narrow two lane road from where we left the interstate till we were in Milford. We turned on to Broad street and recognized several buildings from our previous visit. That previous visit had been in the fall when the trees were magnificent yellow and orange this time they were lush green. We found our hotel and decided to have lunch on the porch and relax a bit before heading out to explore the picturesque town.
Our first stop was The Columns, a stately two story home that is the Pike County Historical Society museum. Our sojourn to Milford was to find the deeds and other records that we had previously been told were not to be found.
Oh so not true. They are not online anywhere, and believe me I had looked. I continually had checked familysearch.com.
The above was what I had been seeing the last 25 years. No deeds just (3) maps. I went ahead and emailed the records office prior to our trip to verify they had records from the early years when Pike County had been formed out of Wayne County. Now we were here and I was anxious to start searching the files for the Westfalls and Doughertys that had made their home in Lackawaxen township back in the mid 19th century.
Our first afternoon we stopped by the Historical Society’s museum and were able to copy items from their file on the Westfalls. So glad we had been there previously because some of what we had found 25 years ago was no longer there or possibly the volunteer was unaware of where the information was filed.
The following day after a very pleasant breakfast at our hotel we walked the short distance to the Pike County Administration Building where we spent the morning searching the index of Grantors and Grantees books. The Grantees index listed:
- (24) for John Westfall from 1829 – 1848
- (2) for Jane E. Chamberlain 1864
- (1) for Jane Dougherty 1850
- (1) for William Dougherty 1841
Wow, finally another source document for our 2x great grandfather William Dougherty.
A quick recap:
The women in the records office were very helpful. We were able to get copies of many of the deeds. I extracted from the indexes the volumes and pages of any that we might be interested in getting copies for in the future.
The above deed shows that William Dougherty purchased from his father-in-law an acre of land in Lackawaxen township for $60 and had constructed a “dwelling house”. the instrument was dated Nov. 19, 1841. William and Jane ‘s son John Lyle was born on July 18, 1842 and the deed was recorded on October 19, 1842. This parcel of land was bordered on the east by Abranesor Griswold, south by John Westfall, and on the west by the Delaware and Hudson Canal.
Jane Dougherty is noted in this record as the wife of William L. Dougherty.This instrument is dated April 12 1847 and is recorded on Jan. 5 1850. This deed conveys 3/4 of an acre from Jane’s father to her for the sum of $37. This property is noted as located at lock #12 of the Delaware & Hudson Canal and adjacent to the John Westfall property.
The maps shows Lackawaxen Creek (where the Delaware & Hudson Canal was located?) running in a north/south direction and the toe path is on the western bank, I have yet to determine exactly where the John Westfall, William Dougherty/Jane Dougherty or even the Griswold property was located during this time frame.
Great finds in Milford thanks to my sister Madeleine and the staff in the records office.
More later on other finds during this adventure.