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Switzerland County – 1849 Indiana Gazetteer

Switzerland County, Indiana entries from:
The Indiana Gazetteer or Topographical Dictionary. Indianapolis : E. Chamberlain, 1849.
Digitized copy online at Internet Archive

ALLENSVILLE, a small town in Switzerland county, eleven miles north-east of Vevay, surrounded by a good country and a very industrious population.

BELMONT, a small town in Craig township, Switzerland county.

BENNINGTON, a small town in Pleasant township, Switzerland county.

BRYANT’S CREEK, a small stream in Switzerland county, running south into the Ohio near Warsaw.

COTTON, a northern township in Switzerland county.

CRAIG, a south-western township in Switzerland county.

FLORENCE, a small town in York township, Switzerland county, on the Ohio river, eight miles above Vevay.

GRANT’S CREEK, a small mill stream in Switzerland county, which runs south into the Ohio river, four miles below Rising Sun.

INDIAN CREEK, a mill stream in Switzerland county, rising in the north part of it, runs south into the Ohio two miles below Vevay.

JACKSONVILLE, a small town in Switzerland county, seven miles north north-east of Vevay.

JEFFERSON, the most populous township in Switzerland county.

LOG LICK, a small stream in Switzerland county, running south-west into the Ohio six miles above Vevay.

MOUNT STERLING, a small town in Switzerland county, four miles north of Vevay.

PLEASANT, a north-west township in Switzerland county.

PLUM CREEK, a small stream in Switzerland county, that falls into the Ohio two miles above Vevay.

POSEY, an eastern township in Switzerland.

QUERCUS GROVE, a small town in Switzerland county, 12 miles north-east of Vevay, sometimes called the “Bark Works.” It was first settled in 1816, by Daniel D. Smith, and others, who commenced grinding and packing oak bark in hogsheads to send to England for coloring matter. The experiment proved a failure, and was soon abandoned.

SWITZERLAND COUNTY, organized in 1814, derives its name from a settlement of Swiss, who came within the bounds of the present county in 1802, and commenced the cultivation of the grape there. It is bounded north by Ripley and Ohio counties, east and south by the Ohio river, and west by Jefferson, and it contains about 225 square miles. The civil townships are Craig, Jefferson, York and Posey, on the Ohio, Cotton in the north, and Pleasant in the north-west. The population in 1830 was 7,111, in 1840, 9,920, and at this time is about 14,000. As the Ohio river borders on the county 36 miles, there are many large and fine bottoms which are mostly rich and well cultivated. Back of these for an average distance of three miles, the river hills rise from 400 to 500 feet, and are interrupted at short distances by precipitous ravines. The timber and soil are, however, of a superior quality, and where the hills are not too steep to be farmed, first rate crops are produced. Farther back from the river the ravines disappear, and a high table land is reached, more clayey, yet well adapted to grass and small grain, and with proper cultivation, suited to any crop common to the climate. There are some of the best farms in the State in Switzerland, and every year large quantities of produce are shipped to the south from the numerous landings on the river.

There are in the county 10 grist mills, 15 saw mills, of which about half are propelled by steam the others by water, 40 stores, 20 groceries, 20 ware-houses, one printing office, 10 lawyers, 30 physicians, 25 preachers, and the usual proportion of mechanics. In the towns there are 12 Methodist churches, two for the Presbyterians, two for the Baptists, and one for the Universalians, besides others in the country. The taxable land amounts to 143,016 acres. There is none yet belonging to the United States.

John James Dufour was the enterprising leader of the Swiss Colony before referred to. By his indefatigable exertions, a grant of land was procured from the United states to him and his little colony on a long credit, and by this means about 200 acres of land was procured for each of the original settlers. They were industrious and prudent, and they and their posterity have generally been prosperous. See Vevay.

VEVAY, the Seat of Justice of Switzerland county, is situated on a beautiful bottom on the Ohio river, 70 miles below Cincinnati and the same distance above Louisville, and 96 south-east of Indianapolis. It constitutes a part of the tract of land sold on credit by the United States to the Swiss settlement, in 1802, for the cultivation of the vine. The town was laid out in 1813, by the brothers J. J., J. F. and Daniel Dufour, and received the name of a town in Switzerland from the vicinity of which they had emigrated. Vevay now contains over 200 houses, many of them built with much taste, and 1,200 inhabitants.