Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Jonah's Run 175th Anniversary

This year is 175th anniversary of Jonah’s Run Baptist Church, started by Collett’s. Including Collett, McKay, McCune, and Doster stories, I am writing stories about various other of our family members as they related to the church, including how Quaker Daniel Underwood, my mother’s father, never a Baptist, came to a Jonah’s Run Box Social where he bought Wilhelmina Hahn’s box. She was the new teacher at the Collett school south of Katy’s Lane, and she was staying with Collett “girls”. Anyway, Dan and Wilhelmina soon married.
If Jane Desotelle sends me more info about her, I want to include some stories about Matilda Downing Underwood. Her first Underwood husband built her the Tower House to the east of Jonah’s Run. Her second Underwood husband owned the rest of the land adjacent to JR on the north side of SR 73. She was a recorded Quaker minister, a temperance and women suffrage leader.
I’ve just discovered that second generation Daniel Collett, one of the founders, bought 4+ acres, on both sides of the then Waynesville to Wilmington State Road, that apparently included the future site of Jonah’s Run church and cemetery, from Levi Lukens, the first Quaker to come here from Northern VA in 1802 or so, in 1839, just after the church was founded. In 1907, his two surviving daughters sold the 1+ acres on the north side of the road-where the church was built in 1839 and the cemetery was almost full before 1870 when the Collett’s quit burying there -of his 1839 purchase to the Jonah’s Run Baptist Trustees for $1.00.
My brother, John Doster, is working with others to clean up the cemetery again. After looking at grave markers and at the Howard Collett blueprint, I drew the following possible conclusions: I concluded why Revolutionary Daniel Collett, never a Quaker, was buried at Caesar Creek Quaker Meeting Cemetery (a mile east of where I’m writing this at, now, our Moses McKay House). The reason? He had six Quaker daughter-in-laws, including a granddaughter-in-law. Some were members at Caesar Creek. Daniel died in 1835. In 1839, some of those Quaker daughter-in-laws persuaded their Collett husbands to put two Quaker-style front doors on their new Jonah’s Run Baptist Church.
Where was Quaker Mary Haines Collett, Revolutionary Daniel’s wife, buried in 1826? Her sister-in-law, Sarah Collett Ashby, died in 1824. She was buried on the farm, and then her body was moved to Springfield Quaker Meeting cemetery, 1+ miles SE of the SE corner of the original Collett land. I’ve not found Mary’s name listed in any cemetery records in Clinton, Warren, or Greene Counties. I wonder if her body was buried a half mile west of Jonah’s Run, on Hatton’s Hill, 300 feet north of now SR 73, in the SW corner of Survey 770. Mom told me she used to pick wild flowers there while her father, Daniel Underwood, mowed that cemetery.
About 1821, neighbors, likely including Collett’s, built a public meeting house there, “so Betsy Gaddis could have a Presbyterian service”. The Gaddis family had bought the SW corner of that survey 770 in 1816 from Abijah O’Neal, the first Quaker to come to SW Ohio in 1797 or so, from SC. (The land became my grandfather Underwood’s farm.) When the chimney fell down on some kids in 1835, the public meeting house was closed.

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