|For further reading:
|History of Warren County Pennsylvania, edited by J.S. Schenck, Syracuse,
N.Y., D. Mason & Co. Publishers, 1887, reproduced in 1974 by Warren County
Historical Society of Warren, PA. This is 692 pages with appendices and an index
added in the 1974 reprint. Fascinating reading, it recounts stories of first settlers
from people who actually knew them. A wonderful research source.
The Irvine Story, by Nicholas Wainwright, published by the Historical Society of
Pennsylvania, 1964. Details the founding of Warren by the general who led the
Pennsylvania contingent of the 10,000 troops sent by General Washington to put
down a rebellion in Pittsburgh. Includes document showing that General William
Irvine purchased the land where Warren is situated for 15 Pounds in 1792. His
descendants lived in the area until 1963. They donated the land on which Warren
General Hospital was built.
The French Invasion of Western Pennsylvania, 1753. Published by the
Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission. This book written by Donald H.
Kent in 1954 draws extensively on documents from Canadian archives.
Washington: A Life, published in 2010 by Penguin Press. It won the Pulitzer
Prize for History. Author Ron Chernow does a miraculous job of distilling our first
President's personal documents, which were voluminous.
Forth To The Wilderness, The First American Frontier 1754-1774 by Dale Van
Every, published in 1961 is just loaded with fascinating details including Buffalo
right in this part of the country!
The Legends of the Iroquois, Told By The Cornplanter was published in 1904
and includes authentic, first-person accounts of Chief Cornplanter in the preface.
Cornplanter died in 1836 and claimed to have lived through the French and Indian
War, The American Revolutionary War, and the The War of 1812. He may been
born around 1750 but legend has it that he lived more than a century. Click on the
link above and read it for free.
|Warren PA: local guide to
|Road Not Taken: If you look closely at the above photo, just above the
Hickory Street Bridge in the center and just below the white refinery
storage tank, you will see the confluence of the Conewango Creek as it
appeared to explorers in the mid-18th century.
They claimed the land you are looking at for France and that started the
French and Indian War. The French plan was to send an armada of river
craft to the confluence of the Monogahela and the Allegheny Rivers to
the present site of Pittsburgh, uniting New France with its possessions in
Louisiana, effectively sealing off British expansion.
However, for a variety of reasons, the armada took a different route, from
present-day Erie, PA to French Creek to get to the Allegheny River. This
turned out be a bad idea. The project was a disaster because French
Creek was not as navigable as the Conewango Creek. The armada
never really arrived. The woefully under-supplied French abandoned
Fort Duquesne which the British re-named Fort Pitt, or Pittsburgh.
Perhaps no European was more-traveled in this part of the frontier than
George Washington, a land surveyor who owned and laid claim to huge
tracts of land in western Pennsylvania, prior to the French and Indian
War. It is interesting to speculate that he may have scouted the scene
depicted here and surely understood its strategic importance. We do
know that Washington led to respect for its inhabitants and crucial
diplomacy with the Seneca nation, particularly with Chief Cornplanter,
who visited Washington in the nation's capital in Philadelphia.
Independence and European settlement of Western Pennsylvania.
After the French and Indian War, the British government had forbidden
colonists from settling here. When George Washington won the
American Revolutionary War it opened up the land you see in the above
photo to European settlement and Warren County PA was established
during his second term of office as the first U.S. President, in 1795.
Warren County's Most Famous Resident did not speak English. In
honor of Chief Cornplanter's contribution to American independence, the
State of Pennsylvania erected the nation's first monument to a native
American, which can now be seen at the Riverview-Corydon Cemetery
in Warren County. A life-size painting of Chief Cornplanter greets
visitors at the first exhibit at the Yorktown American Revolutionary War
Museum in Virginia.