"MY HOMETOWN" Princeton by miner
Princeton Travel Guide: 14 reviews and 31 photos
Gibson County was once a wilderness situated in the Northwest
Territory which, in 1784, was ceded to the United States of America by
Virginia. The State of Indiana was organized April 19, 1816. John
Severns is recognized as the first white settler in Gibson County, arriving
in 1789. He operated a ferry on the south side of the Patoka River. A
Welsh man, Severns answered the call of the colonists in the
Revolutionary War, but on his first trip home to Virginia, Indians
swooped upon the family. Severns' parents, sister, and younger brother
were killed, while he and an older brother were kept as prisoners.
Severns, a short, heavy-set man, was held captive seven years before
he was able to escape. In 1789, he penetrated the wilderness of the
Northwest Territory and he and his family settled on the south bank of
the Patoka River near what is now the town of Patoka. They lived as
cave dwellers for several months until the Indians, remnants of the
Shawnee tribe residing on the north side of the river, allowed the
family to construct a crude hut of boughs, skins and other materials.
Severns was allowed to continue his residence in that region, now
known as Severns' Bridge, and to establish a ferry upon the conditions
that he keep "firewater'' for the Indians and allow them free use of the ferry.
Originally belonging to Knox County, what is now Gibson County came
to be in 1813. The county derives its name from Gen. John Gibson, a
gallant soldier of the French and Indian War and the Revolutionary War.
Gibson was born in Pennsylvania in 1740 of Scottish-Irish ancestry, and
he was well educated. In 1763, he was captured by Indians and was
adopted by a squaw whose son had died in battle. With the Indians,
Gibson mastered several languages, along with the customs of several
tribes. He was later released and he returned to business in Pittsburgh.
Gibson was appointed territorial secretary of Indiana in 1800 and held
that office until 1816. While Gen. William Henry Harrison, governor of
Indiana, was engaged in the War of 1812, Gibson was acting governor.
He died in 1822, shortly before his 82nd birthday.
. The name of the county seat was selected by the
drawing of lots among the commissioners, Prince winning. Hence,
Princeton was named.
Long before Princeton was platted and before Gibson County was
formed, pioneer James McClure deeded 30 acres of land to parties
who eventually donated 10 acres which include what is now the public
square. Named for Capt. William Prince, one of four commissioners
whose name was drawn from lots to name the settlement, Princeton's
first house was erected by Capt. Thomas Chapman in 1814. Chapman
established a hotel - The Traveler's Inn - and boarded the hands who
constructed the first courthouse. He sold the hotel in 1815.
A post office was established in Princeton in 1816, while the post office
currently used was built in 1913 for $49,500. By 1818, Princeton
businesses included a blacksmith shop, harness shop, pottery, cabinet
shop, hatter industry, gunpowder mill, distillery and a copper shop.
Princeton was incorporated as a city in 1884.
- Pros:Easy going ,laid back lifestyle
- Cons:No nightlife,they roll up the sidewalks at dark!!
- In a nutshell:This where I live
Wheeling covered Bridge is not in Princeton but it is nearby.One of only two left in Gibson County.The third historic... more travel advice
Fishing in the Patoka River usually was a futile effort,but it was getting back to nature.I would take my kids hiking... more travel advice
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