HISTORY OF ORANGE COUNTY
The third town in the county, both in size and in business importance is Newton Stewart, in the extreme south of Jackson Township near the county line, on the northwest quarter of Section 27, Township 1 south. Range 2 west. Patoka Creek flows by this town, and furnishes abundant water-power for the mills that have occasion to be built there. The grist-mill now in operation is owned by Samuel and Reuben Brown, who bought it in 1879. This is the same one built by the Fosters in 1856, on the site of the old Lewis Allen mill. It is now valued at about $2,000. The town was laid out April 17, 1839 by William and Henry Stewart, at that time having sixty-eight lots, but in December, 1868, seventy-two lots were added, and are known as Shoulder’s Addition. To their own name the Stewarts are said to have added the name of their birthplace in Ireland, making the full name of the town Newton Stewart. They were the first merchants of the place, and are said to have begun about 1835 with a stock of general merchandise. Stephen Elkins was their immediate successor, and remained in trade for some time. As near as could be ascertained the following is a list of the merchants who have been in the town since that time: Dr. James Dillard, Henry Jordon, Henry Banks, John A. Wininger, Daniel Williams, Henry Critchfield, T. N. Braxtan, Foster Bros., Stewart & Edrington, Solomon Williams, John Foster, Wesley Shoulder, Thomas A. Fleming, Tillery & Gass, Stout Bros., Pritchard & Cadle, Frederick Wiedeman, William Roberts, H. H. Polson, Thomas & Burgess, Lindley & Stout, Campbell, Rhodes & Co., Dr. W. M. Brent, J. R. Simpson & Son, William T. Swift. At present there are two dry goods stores, one furniture store, one drug store, one grocery store and one blacksmith and wagon-shop by James F. Dillard.
The first physician was Dr. James Dillard, who came in 1839 and remained the balance of his life. Others have been: Drs. Thomas Polson and Josiah Brown, partners; Dr. J. E. V. Radcliff came in 1855 and remained for twelve years; Dr. Edmund Byon, Dr. John Courtney, Dr. Sylvester Brown, Dr. W. M. Brent, from 1870 to the present; Dr. Emanuel Smith, from 1870 to present. Drs. James Smith, Thomas Courtney and R. H. Hutchasom have each been located at this place for a short time. Since the establishment of the postoffice these men have been Postmasters: Dr. Radcliff, Isaac Harmon, Solomon Williams, Dr. Dillard, Jeremiah Jacobs, William Roberts, H. H. Polson and E. B. Rhodes, the present incumbent. Mails arrive twice a week from Paoli, on Mondays and Fridays.
A Masonic lodge was organized here May 23, 1871, and is known as the Newton Stewart Lodge, No. 432. It had worked nearly a year prior to that time under a dispensation. The first officers were: John Courtney, W. M.; Washington Kellams, S. W.; and William Brown, J. W. These three with James B. Gass, Robert King, James N. Marlett, Jordon C. Marlett, William Parks, Robert Parks and James C. Stevens were the charter members. The lodge is in a flourishing condition, and has been prosperous ever since its organization, being now out of debt and owning a hall worth about $1,000. Its present membership is thirty six, and the officers are: David H. Stevens, W. M.; James A. Smith, S. W.; Henry Sutton, J. W. James F. Dillard, Secretary; Jesse Tucker, Treasurer; Eli Jones, S. D.; Jesse Cope, J. D.; and J. C. Marlett, Tiler. The lodge of I. 0. 0. F., known as Patoka, No. 385, was established here on the 8th of January, 1872, with Kinder Parks, N. G.; James Dillard, V. G.; James F. Dillard, Secretary; J. W. Jacobs, Permanent Secretary; William Parks, Treasurer; and in addition to these were William Brent, Joseph R. Leonard and William S. Fisher as charter members. At one time this organization was one of the most thriving in the county, having as high as forty members, but owing to its members moving away it has lost much of its interest, and is now on the wane. There was also an Encampment here with about twenty members, but this is now defunct.
The town of Unionville is in the northern part of Greenfield Township. and is a flourishing little village of about 200 population. It was laid out some time prior to September, 1864, and is said to have derived its name from the circumstance of the two political parties uniting to raise a pole. At that time, as at present, the township was strongly Democratic, and some dispute arose as to which party should have the top of the pole as the more honorable place. This was finally determined in favor of the "old hickory," and thenceforth everything "went merry as a marriage bell." From this union of the parties the town has been called Unionville. It is said to have been laid out by the Teafords, and is on Young’s Creek, an addition being made in February, 1869. There is quite an extensive trade done at this place, and Frederick Gobble is said to have been the first merchant. This was probably late in the fifties or early in the sixties. His stock was not large, and was composed of such goods as country stores of those times kept. He also kept a distillery for some time, but quit that about the year 1868. In 1869 William R. Apple commenced doing a mercantile business with what was then counted a good stock of general merchandise, and for some time did a good trade. His successors have been Enoch Apple, Braxtan & Braxtan, Scott & Wolf, Gilliatt & Weeks, and Teaford & Apple, the last firm now doing a good trade with a full stock of goods. William B. Hill started another store in 1878, and is yet doing a prosperous business with a stock of dry goods, groceries, etc., usually kept in stores of this kind. Mayfleld Bros. have recently opened a drug store here, and are having good success in their enterprise. Besides this Dr. W. B. Gilliatt does considerable business in the drug line of merchandise. Mrs. Paulina Bundy, in 1883, began her present flourishing trade in millinery goods. J. A. Weeks, and A. McBride are the blacksmiths of the place, each having a shop of his own. Dr. Jacob Martin is said to have been the first physician of the place, coming in 1864, and after remaining about two years, with but little practice, he left. Dr. William D. Ellis located here in the fall of 1867, and has continued here ever since, enjoying a successful practice. Frederick Gobble, the first merchant of the place, began the practice of medicine in 1869 and continued until 1874, when he moved away. In the fore part of 1871, Dr. W. B. Gilliatt began the practice here, and has been actively engaged in it ever since that time. Besides these, Drs. Lomax and Hammond have done some practice in the country, although they never were citizens of Unionville. The churches of the town are two - the United Brethern and the Old School Regular Baptist. At this place there is a Post of the Grand Army of the Republic, organized in June, 1884, with twenty-eight charter members, and William H. Hobson as Commander. It is in a healthy and growing condition, and one of the strongest in the county. The name of the Postoffice here is Young’s Creek, and since its establishment these persons have been Postmaster: Frederick Gobble, W. D. Ellis, W. R. Apple, W. B. Gilliatt and J. A. Weeks. They receive mail twice a week from Paoli, on Mondays and Fridays. Williamsburg was laid out in December, 1842, by William McDonald, on the banks of Patoka Creek, in the northwest quarter of Section 15, Township 1 south, Range 1 west. At that time he owned the grist-mill there, and also a store. He did a prosperous business for some time. After him Levi Long and Jonathan Halmer were merchants there. This attempt to build a town was unsuccessful, and in a few years there was nothing left of it in a business point of view, and now exists only in name. It is the present place of holding the elections in Greenfield Township.
Pittsburg, near the south boundary of the county, is said to have been named for a family who lived there named Pitman. This place is familiarly known among the citizens of the surrounding country as " Short Peg," but whence this unenviable appellation came is past finding out, even by the inquisitive historian. There is at this time a country store there owned by Patton, a grist-mill by Alonzo Bennett and a saw-mill.