Historic Wrightstown, Bucks County,Pa. Folk Art Carved Chestnut Tree Relic which was from the starting point of William Penn's sons 1737 "Walking Purchase" with the Lenape Indians !!!
Inked on the back of this single piece of carved wood is historic origin as follows ;
"Cut from a piece of the Famous Chestnut Tree, which stood on the Turnpik(e) below the
Wrightstown,Pa. Toll Gate, and which was closely associated with the INDIAN WALK, 1737"
The inscription is underneath the old Shellac, which has a fine overall Crackle, like fine China, from age.
Historic Folk Art Carving done in the style from the 1880's & 1890's from a single piece of the Relic Tree Trunk, with a working Clock installed inside. Architectural Pediment Top with Carved Bead work, and Arm-like extensions alternating from Cubic to Round again.
Monument looking center stone inside with Relief Carved Single Flower, atop an arched Mound & stepped Base with Incised Tulip.
(To me, this Suggests an apology to the displaced Indians after the highly protested Treaty)
Carver used Two wooden dowel pegs to stabilize a crack on the left side, also under the original shellac.
Measurements ; Stands 10 3/4 inches High, and 5 3/8 inches Wide and 4 inches Deep.
Weight ; 1 Pound and 13.8 Ounces.
Clock ; Original "Ansonia 30 Hour Clock Movement" has been Serviced on 8-29-19
and is in good running order, since it ran for 45 hours on one wind.
Beveled Dial Glass with Nice Brass "Fleur-de-lis" embossed Dial Bezel.
Paper Dial has some minor staining on the edges from the 4 steel stand-off supports.
Personal Satisfaction Guaranteed for a 3 Day Inspection Period, with a
"No questions asked Full item Refund". (shipping fees non-refundable)
Measurements ; Stands 10 3/4 inches High, and 5 3/8 inches Wide and 4 inches Deep.
Weight ; 1 Pound and 13.8 Ounces.
Shipping : Will ship out first business day following a Sunday, since it is currently "On Display" in a Sundays Only
Antique Mall. Or can picked up in-person at the Antique Mall on a Sunday in Adamstown,Pa
Historical Notes from References. :
"History of Bucks County, Pennsylvania, from the discovery of the Delaware to the present time”.
Author by ; W . W . H. DAVIS, A. M., and Published in 1876. Chapter XXX pages 484 to 498.
Index includes ; Indians were dissatisfied with the First purchase from 1682. ( Treaty of 1686)
Treaty of 1737. Subject matter associated with the Preliminary Walk. — Course and distance.
Steele's letter to Smith. — Great walk arranged. — Marshall, et al. — The starting.
Monument erected. — Jennings and Yeates gives out. — Distance walked. — Head line drawn.
The walk and the Indians. — Terms of treaty.
About treaty of 1686. — (Treaty of 1718) — The Charles Thomson map. — The exact
starting place. — “Location of CHESTNUT TREE” — Testimony of witnesses. — Fairness of the
walk. — Testimony of the Chapman family. — ^Location of Spruce tree. — To wsisnick.
Head line of purchase, 1682. — Solomon Jennings. — Edward Marshall.
His wife killed. — His death. — Marshall's rifle.
No event in the early history of the county gave so much dissatisfaction
to the Indians and led to severer criticism of the Penns than the
"Walking Purchase." This was under the treaty of 1737, which confirmed to the Pro-
prietaries all that part of Bucks county above a line drawn from the
Neshaminy through the lower part of Wrightstown to the Delaware at the mouth of
Knowles' Creek. We purpose, in this chapter, to give an account of this celebrated purchase and the way it was carried out.
The first purchase of land in this county of the Indians, as already stated,
was in 1682, by William Markham. This embraced all the territory between
the Neshaminy and the Delaware as high 'up as Wrightstown and Upper
Makefield, after Penn's arrival he purchased the land lying between the
Pennypack and the Neshaminy. The next treaty is said to have been made
August 30, 1686, although such treaty, or deed, has never been found, by
which the Indians conveyed to Penn all the land above the upper line of the
treaty of 1682, extending as far inland "as a man can go in one day and a
half," to be bound on the west by the Neshaminy, and on the east by the
Delaware, After this treaty white settlers established themselves in considerable
number on the lower part of the purchase, and some settled in the country
about the Lehigh. The Indians, becoming uneasy at these encroachments,
desired to have the limits of the treaty of 1686 marked by definite metes and
bounds. They had several meetings with the Proprietaries to carry out its
provisions. The first was held at Durham, 1834, continued at Pennsbury,
This historic event took place in the meadows along Durham creek some time in
October, 1734. See letter of James Logan to the Proprietaries, Penna. Archives, Series II,
Vol. 7, pages 182-183.
In 1886 the Bucks County Historical Society erected a monument near the corner
of the Wrightstown graveyard to mark the starting point of the ** Walking Purchase/ 1737. Martha Chapman gave the ground, and the monument stands on the southeast corner of the road from Penn's Park makes with the Durham road.
The site of the “CHESTNUT TREE mentioned in the Walking Purchase."
HISTORY OF BUCKS COUNTY. 473
Immediately the treat-y of the 25th of August, 1737, had been concluded,
Steel acquainted Timothy Smith of the fact, and asked him, in the name of
*'Our Proprietor, to speak to that man of the three which traveled and held
out the best when they walked over the land before, to attend that service at
the time mentioned, when Solomon Jennings is expected to join and travel
the day and a half with him." Smith and Chapman were both expected tt>
accompany the walk, and the former was to provide needful provisions. The
time fixed for the walk, under the treaty, was the 12th of September, but as
the Supreme Court, and Quarter Sessions of Bucks county would both be in
session then, it was postponed to the 19th. The preliminaries were all arranged
in advance, and Edward Marshall, James Yeates and Solomon Jennings, all
famous walkers, and no doubt one of them **that man which held out the
best*' in the trial walk, were employed by the Proprietaries to make the walk.
It was agreed the Indians should send several of their young men along to
see that the thing was fairly done. The walkers were promised £5 in money,
and five hundred acres of land, but Marshall always maintained that he never
received any remuneration. The place of starting was fixed at a large chest-
nut tree that stood in the corner of the field where the road from Pennsville(Pennsbury)
meets the Durham road, near the Wrightstown meeting-house. This tree
was selected because it was a well-known point, and near the northern boundary
of the Markham purchase. The walkers were accompanied by several
persons on horseback, and provisions were carried for them.
A number of persons had assembled at the place of starting. Marshall,
Yeates, and Jennings stood with their hands upon the CHESTNUT TREE, and,
as the sun showed his face above the horizon, the word was given by Sheriff
Smith, and they started. (Juided by the compass, they walked in as direct a
line as the obstructions would permit, some of the way being on the bed of
the Durham road. Bets were made on the speed of the walkers. Yeates led
the way with a light step, and next to him, but some way behind, came Jennings
and two of the Indian walkers, and Marshall came last, far behind
Jennings, swinging a hatchet in his hand, and walking in a careless manner.
They reached Red Hill,*^ in Bedminster, in two and a half hours, and took
dinner in the meadow near Wilson's, an Indian trader on Durham creek, sup-
posed to have been about where the old furnace stood. They crossed the
Lehigh a mile below Bethlehem, at which is now Jones' island, and passed the
Blue mountains at Smith's gap, Moore township, Northampton county, and
that night slept on the north side of the mountain. The walk was resumed
the next day at sunrise, and the extremest point reached at twelve, M., when
Marshall, who alone held out, threw himself at length on the ground, and
grasped a sapling which marked the end of the line. Jennings first gave out,
two miles north of the Tohickon, about ten or eleven o'clock of the first day,
and then lagged on behind in the company of the curious. He left them on
the Lehigh, and returned to his home above Bethlehem, but never recovered
his health. Yeates, who fell in the creek at the foot of the mountain the morn-
ing of the second day, was quite blind when taken up, and lived but three days. Marshall lived to the age of ninety, and died in Tinicum. The walk is 41/2 On Saturday, September 22, 1900, a memorial tablet was dedicated near Red Hill, (Ottsvillc) Bedminster township, to commemorate the great walk of 1737. It was the 163rd anniversary. The walkers passed near the place. Charles Laubach Durham delivered a suitable address. The memorial was the gift of J. \V. Emery, and erected at his expense.
Early History of Wrightstown.
Two hundred years ago an unbroken forest covered the land where now are the well cultivated farms and the comfortable homes of Wrightstown. The only dwellings were the rude habitations of the Indians; the only highways, the narrow woodland paths. A year later and the first Christian home was established.
John Chapman, of Yorkshire, England, emigrated to America with his wife and children, made his way through the forest, and, in the latter part of 1684, took possession of five hundred acres of land, (previously purchased) and set up his household goods in a cave, in the wilds of Wrightstown, where he dwelt until he was able to build a log house. This cave which has now disappeared, was on the right hand side of the road leading from Wrightstown meeting-house to Penn's Park. Some traces of it were to be seen as late as 1768. John Chapman's house, the first in the township, was near the same spot, not far, it is thought, from the place where Rachel Blaker’s house now stands.
There are many objects of historical interest in Wrightstown, but the old landmarks are fast passing away. Few of the old log houses of our ancestors are standing, some having been destroyed within the last ten years. Long ago disappeared the last traces of that ancient “CHESTNUT TREE” from which Marshall, Jennings and Yates, on that memorable September day in 1737, started on their famous walk. The poor old tree was blown over in 1765, but the stump was still to be seen within the memory of persons now living. It was between the meetinghouse and the Penn's Park road, in the corner of a field now owned by Martha Chapman, and was
Not the old tree below the meeting-house, near Josiah Tomlinson's, as many insist on believing. This same tree, however, also deserves mention; it is now but a shell, and no longer a thing of beauty or an emblem of strength. Yet every year it puts forth its leaves and blossoms. It furnishes rather a lesson of perseverance, or an illustration of the force of habit. Had this old tree the gift of speech, like Tennyson's 'Talking Oak, or The Pine of our Bucks county poet, what a tale it could tell. Think of the long procession that has passed since it was a graceful young sapling, since that day, after the battle of Trenton, when a messenger rode rapidly up the Durham road to spread the glad tidings, the feet of his galloping horse beating time as he sang or shouted, "The Hessians are taken! The Hessians are taken!"
Ref. ; Scarborough, Miss Annie C., read at Wrightstown Meeting, July 31, 1883; in A Collection of Papers Read Before The Bucks County Historical Society: Volume 1, published for the Society by B.F. Fackenthal, Jr., Riegelsville, PA 1908