Settlement

The original settlements in Milton Township were made in 1803 when Nathaniel Stanley and Aaron Porter followed the Mahoning River as far as was navigable and settled along opposite banks just above Pricetown. Aaron Porter who would later become a famous hunter, located on the west side of the river. Shortly, John Van Netten and his family arrived from Delaware and built a cabin in the western part of the township. It is thought that Mrs. Van Netten was the first working girl in the township, for in her travels from the east she acquired a spoon mol.d Many folks would bring their broken pewter ware which she would melt down to form new spoons. Jesse Holliday arrived in 1804 and erected a grist mill, sawmill, and carding mill. The grist mill was a remarkable size for the times. It was a two story structure which measured 34 feet by 40 feet and contained an undershot wheel that measured 22 feet in diameter. Judge Robert Price became the owner of these mills about 1817 and gave his name to the settlement. Later industries were a linseed oil plant, flax mill and woolen factory. Thomas L. Fenton was the first tavern keeper. Booth and Elliott were probably the first merchants. Dr. Tracy Bronson and Dr. George Ewing were the first practicing physicians, and Fenton, the tavern keeper, was also the first blacksmith. A post office was established there about 1808. There were also early tanneries and distilleries scattered throughout the township. Pricetown had reached its best days by 1840. Today there is little left of that part of the old village that lay in Milton Township. Even more tragic was the fate of Fredericksburg, once a flourishing village on the Mahoning River at present day Ellsworth Road. Once a stagecoach stop on the Cleveland-Pittsburgh route and a place of taverns, stores and mills, Fredericksburg is now buried beneath the waters of Lake Milton. In the first thirty years or more after its settlement, Milton Township flourished. Fertile and well drained lands made it a desirable place in which to live. It is a township of much natural beauty in the winding Mahoning River Valley, and it is located but a short distance from the village of Deerfield, in Portage County, which was one of the most thriving settlements on the Western Reserve in the early days.