Madison County History and Genealogy

History and Genealogy



History of Madison County


Darby Township Streams

From History of Madison County, W. H. Beers & Co, Chicago, 1883

Big Darby rises in the northeast portion of Champaign through the northern portion of Union County, passing through Darby, a portion of Canaan Township, and thence forming the boundary line between Madison and Franklin Counties. This stream was named by the Indians from a Wyandot chief by the name of Darby, who for a long time resided upon it, near the line of this and Union Counties. Sugar Run rises in Union County, and flows through the eastern portion of this township, empties into Big Darby and forms one of its tributaries. In the early settlement this county, Big Darby furnished important and indispensable water-power privileges, which were made to subserve and meet some of the pressing wants of the people, such as grist and saw mills. Prior to these improvements, the nearest and only mills were at Chillicothe, Ross County. To think of going sixty miles through a dense and unbroken forest, beset on every side with wild beasts and the prowling and treacherous Indian, ready to take your life and pillage your goods, required much more of the spirit of adventure and dare than is found in most of us at the present day. To meet the emergencies under such circumstances, all the families of the first settlers had their "hominy block," an indispensable article in frontier life, and by them more frequently used than the flouring mills of Chillicothe.


From History of Madison County, Ohio, Chester E. Bryan, Supervising Editor, B.F. Bowen & Co., Indianapolis (1915)

The only stream that enters Darby township is Big Darby creek and its tributaries. Big Darby creek finds its source in the northeastern portion of Champaign county, wends its way across the southern portion of Union county, passing through Darby and a portion of Canaan townships, and thence forming the boundary line between Madison and Franklin counties. This stream received its name from the Wyandot Indians who named it after a chief of theirs by the name of Darby, who for a long time lived on its bank, near the present Madison and Union county line. Sugar creek rises in Union county, flows through the eastern portion of the township and empties into the Big Darby. To the early settlers of the township this stream furnished important and indispensable water power, with which they ran their grist- and saw-mills.


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