Washington County was founded in 1781 from Westmoreland. Counties formed from Washington include Allegheny, Beaver, Greene.

Other Information

Information from Donegal Twp; History of Washington County, Pennsylvania.

DONEGAL was one of the thirteen original townships of Washington County laid out in 1781. Its territory then embraced what is now included in the townships of Donegal, Buffalo, East and West Finley, and the western portion of Greene County. The first reduction of the large area of this township was made by the erection of Finley township from it, in 1788, as mentioned in the history of East Finley. Five years later (1793) the petition of John Hill, Martin Horn, Nathaniel McDole, David McMillan, John Buchanan, and fifty-five others, inhabitants of the township of Donegal, was presented to the Court of Quarter Sessions at the June term of the year named, representing that the inhabitants of the eastern part of the township were laboring under great difficulties in transacting business before the justices "at unreasonable distances from home, as also in being obliged to repair roads at extreme distances, with divers other inconveniences occasioned by the great extent of the township," and praying that the court divide the township and erect from a part of it a new township, to be called New German township, with boundaries as follows: "Beginning at the forks of the run near Richard Waller's, thence by a straight line to Buffelow Creek at Capt. Glover's, thence up the creek to Canton or Hopewell Line, thence by Canton township line to the Widdow Dickerson's, inclusive, thence strait by the Ridge Dividing the waters of Wheelen and Buffalow untill south of Thomas Byers', thence by a straight Line to the place of Beginning."

This petition was reported on unfavorably and rejected by the court. Five years later, at the April sessions of the court, in the year 1798, the inhabitants presented another petition praying for a division and erection of a township, to embrace the territory mentioned in the former petition, and an additional area lying north of it. This petition was laid over from the April term till the January term of 1799, then continued through the February term and to March, at which term the court ordered a division of Donegal township, and the "upper division" to be erected into a new township, "to be called Buffalo township," thus reducing Donegal to limits nearly identical with those of the present time, only slight changes in boundary having since taken place. The boundaries of Donegal are Independence township on the north, Buffalo and East Finley on the east, East Finley and West Finley on the south, and the State of West Virginia on the west. The principal streams of Donegal are Buffalo Creek and the "Dutch Fork" of the same creek, the former marking the northern boundary of this township against Independence, and the latter flowing northwardly through the central part of Donegal into Buffalo Creek. Buck Run and Rogers' Run are inconsiderable water-courses, flowing into Buffalo Creek by courses generally parallel to that of the Dutch Fork. Several small streams head in the southwest part of Donegal, and flow southwestwardly to join their waters with those of Wheeling Creek. The old National road crosses Donegal township south of the centre, running in a general east-and-west course, and passing through the boroughs of Claysville and West Alexander. The Hempfield Railroad, connecting Wheeling, W. Va., with Washington, Pa., also passes in the same general course through the township and by the two boroughs above named. Its route through the eastern part of the township is nearly parallel with that of the National road, but through the western half lies more northerly along the waters of the Dutch Fork. The railroad has been in operation from Claysville westward for more than twenty-five years.

The earliest white settlement within the limits of the township of Donegal of which any record or other information has been found was that made by Thomas Clark in 1773. Proof that such a settlement was made by him at that time is found in the records of the surveyor of Ohio County, Va., which county at that time, and until the adjustment of the boundary line between that State and Pennsylvania, was supposed to extend eastward so as to include the western half of the present county of Washington. The part of the surveyor's minutes above mentioned as proving Clark's settlement has reference to a tract of three hundred and sixty-three acres, called "Apollos," taken up by John Chapman, assignee of Thomas Clark, on a certificate issued by the Virginia commissioners at Redstone Old Fort, Nov. 16, 1779, describing the tract granted as "lying in the county of Ohio, on the waters of Buffalo Creek, to include an actual settlement made by the said Thomas Clark in the year 1773." Nothing beyond this is learned concerning Thomas Clark or his settlement. His name has not been found elsewhere in any of the records pertaining to this region, nor does it occur in any of the early assessment-rolls of the township. The names of John, Benjamin, and Hezekiah Clark are found among those of the early taxables of Donegal, but whether or not they were sons or other relatives of Thomas, or whether the latter died or removed to other parts after his settlement here, and before the issuance of the Virginia certificate to Chapman for the tract on which Clark settled six years before, is not known.




Birth, Death, or Burial

Kirk, Supler


Green, Kirk, Potter, Supler

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