Darlington Township Historical Landmark
Greersburg Academy was an institution
established by Reverend Thomas Hughes in
Darlington, Pennsylvania, United States in 1802.
The academy was created as a "prep" school for
college. Classes included languages, philosophy,
and astronomy. The stone structure was built
around 1806 making it one of the oldest buildings
still standing in Beaver County. Though it wasn't
originally intended to be used for anything else
but school, the structure did function as a railway
station for a time. It served several railroads
between 1883 and 1972. There were railroad
stations built in other countries solely for trains,
and some of these stations date back to the 1830's like the Liverpool Road railway station in Manchester, England. However, the academy building was built in 1806, which possibly makes it the oldest structure in the world to have ever been used as a station. The Little Beaver Historical Society currently maintains the structure.
John Brown - Famous abolitionist
Walter Forward - 15th Secretary of the Treasury 1841-1843
John White Geary - An American Civil War general who served in theUnion Army and first mayor of San Francisco
Daniel Leasure - Union Army Colonel during the American Civil War and later trustee of the academy
William Holmes McGuffey - American professor and creator of Mcguffey Readers
For such a small community, Darlington Borough has a fantastic historical legacy. But just how did the name "Darlington" get applied to a town once known famously as "Greersburg"?
The first settlers to arrive near Darlington were farmers, such as Robert McMinn and his wife, who crossed the Ohio River at Beaver in 1794 and headed north. Over the next few years, more settlers arrived and began to build cabins. Some of those families were the Martins, Sproats, Dilworths and Boyds. The small village they formed was decidedly Scotch-Irish, and quickly the need arose for a church. This need was filled in 1798, when the Rev. Thomas Hughes came to the village and founded Mount Pleasant Presbyterian Church.
In 1804, the town was laid out by Gen. Abner Lacock, one of the most important figures in all of Beaver County history. The land for the new town was owned by Thomas Sproat, William Martin and George Greer. These three men determined the name of the town through the tried-and-true method of drawing straws. Greer won, and henceforth — or at least for a few decades — the town was to be known as Greersburg.
Because of the poor penmanship of that era, Greersburg often looked like Greensburg on paper. Mail for Greensburg and Greersburg constantly ended up in the wrong town, causing problems for businesses and residents alike.
In 1830, local shop owner David Gilliland encountered a problem because of this mix-up. Doing business with a Pittsburgh merchant named Samuel Darlington, Gilliland accused Darlington of not mailing invoices for his purchases. Once they finally sorted out the reason for the error, Darlington suggested the town change its name. In fact, he not only suggested the change, but also graciously offered his own surname. The people of Greersburg seemed to like the new moniker, and, just like that, Greersburg became Darlington.
Had Thomas Sprout or William Martin drawn the short straw in 1804, the name mix-up would have never happened. Beaver County may have had a Sproutville or Martinsburg to this day. Instead, we have a Darlington Township and a Darlington Borough, both of which can thank the confusion of the early U.S. Postal Service for the names that they carry. (Jeffrey Snedden, Historian & Writer)
Photo's taken from Little Beaver Historical Society Facebook Site
Peffers Store Darlington 1907 building still exists in Darlington. Was Darlington post office for many years also.
Peffer's store Darlington.
GRAHAM BROTHERS Ford tractor dealership.. Building later became Darlington Fire department.
Darlington brick 1920's gas fired kilns.
Peffers store today 2020
Beaver Falls Darlington East Palestine Bus
Graham Brothers wagon store Darlington PA
Darlington Fire department.
Hartshorn school Cannelton 1903
Greersburg Station 1920 the men are Bob Cook William Benson and Doctor W.S. Cook This view is the back of Greersburg Academy the bump out to the left of the picture was the ticket office. When the historical society took over the Academy from the railroad they tore that bump out off and restored it to what it looked like when the building was built.
Oakdale School Cannelton
Downtown Darlington 1921 check out that pot hole.
Beaver County miners Darlington Brick and Clay company
1950 blizzard corner of Old Darlington Road and Wallace Run Road, where Jack's Independent Service is now located.
This is a local road in Darlington in the 1920's
C.W. PEFFER in front of his store Darlington
Watts mill and bridge, hopefully the bridge will be put back before the end of the year 2020
Darlington Joint school building.
Downtown Darlington 4th of July 1920's
Darlington Hotel Darlington PA this hotel sat at the corner lot where Classic Express gas station and car wash are currently located
Darlington Hotel, sat at the corner of 2nd and Market streets in Darlington
A 1914 postcard view of Darlington.
Front porch of the Darlington Hotel 1903. The Darlington hotel was a very fancy establishment for its time . It had a small movie theater , a garage for 20 cars, a 5000 gallon water tank that supplied running water to the rooms, Ice house, bar,restaurant , and laundry all on site . It sat at 702 Market Street where the current Classic express gas station sits. It burnt down in 1925.
"Downtown" Darlington, around 1900.
A look at the town of Darlington just before the turn of the century.
The Civil War memorial in Darlington stands to this day. If the photographer had turned around and took another photo, he would have caught the Greersburg Academy building. Circa 1910.
Americans have always loved to travel. Back before super highways, rest stops, and the Holiday Inn Express, these little roadside cottages could be found just about anywhere. Travelers found simple amenities here...a comfortable, dry place to lay their head before heading back out on the road in the morning.
This is a Vintage Aerial Photograph (circa 1967) of a little cluster of cottages on an old section of Route 51/ Constitution Blvd. in Darlington Twp., located presently between Harry's Place and Grim's Trailer Sales. This lonely little cottage in the second photo is the only one left to tell the story of simpler times, when life went at a slower pace.
1939 Darlington Lake
Darlington Lake, May 1977, From BCHRLF archives
Darlington Lake when the lake was just the dammed up Little Beaver Creek
another early postcard Darlington Lake Park