Click Here to Return to Index

Click Here to Return to Milestones

French Fort?
by Denver Walton
Milestones Vol 17 No 1 Spring 1992

John Heckewelder, the Moravian missionary who travelled through Beaver County many times in the eighteenth century, recorded in his diary that his party camped below the old French fort on the Ohio, shortly after leaving the Beaver River. Some of the chimneys were still standing. A French fort in Beaver County?

Bausman tells us more. In a directive from the Governor of Pennsylvania to the Surveyor-General was an authorization "to survey two hundred acres of land in town lots, near the mouth of Beaver Creek on or near the ground where the old French town stood."

The old French town was further identified by Bausman using a quotation from Bouquefs Journal: "About a mile below (Tbe Big Beavers) confluence with the Ohio, stood formerly a large town, on the steep bank, built by the French, of square logs, with stone chimneys, for some of the Shawanese, Delawares and Mingo tribes, who abandoned it in the year 1758 when the French deserted Fort DuQuesne. Near the fording of Beaver-creek also stood about seven houses which were deserted and destroyed by the Indians, after their defeat on Bushy Run, where.they forsook all their remaining settlements in this part of the country.,,

Bausman also quotes Christopher Post: "At Beaver Creek there is thirty-eight houses, all built by the French for the Indians, some with stone chimneys."

Bausman believed this town to be located in Groveland (that part of present-day Beaver between the Beaver Cemetery and the river).