Note: 1938 President of the Tioga Co. Wool Growers Assoc. * * * Pres. of the Campbell Reunion of 1926, 1927 & 1928. Mentioned on: http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~capane/ReunionProgram1899.html and http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~capane/ReunionAttendance1900.html and http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~capane/ReunionMinutes1926.html and http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~capane/ReunionMinutes1927.html and http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~capane/ReunionMinutes1928.html and http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~capane/ReunionMinutes1939.html and http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~capane/ReunionMinutes1941.html and http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~capane/ReunionMinutes1942.html * * * Wellsboro Agitator, 100th Anniversary Edition, Sept 23, 1954, p5 Letter To The Agitator May I write a letter to the oldest newspaper in Tioga County which I have been reading for more than 70 years. My grand uncle Johnnie Campbell, was a rich merchant in Philadelphia. It was rumored he got into some kind of trouble and left for the wilds of Northern Pennsylvania. The Campbells were noted for trouble. The great clan of Campbells in Scotland is said to be the largest, larger than all the other clans, according to history. Its leader was the Duke of Argyll. The Duke committed atrocious crimes against one of the smaller clans. All Scotland rose in arms and the Campbells fled to Holland leaving their great castle of Invary [sic] and all their possessions. After forty years in Holland, they tried again to possess Scotland and when their boats tried to land, the Scots drove them out to sea. Then they took refuge in the North of Ireland. Here's a little episode: "The feud between the Campbells and the Macleans, nearly two hundred years old, has been healed and the Duke of Argyle, Chief of Clan Campbell, has sent a telegram to Sir Fitsroy [sic[ Maclean, head of that Clan." The feud went back to 1745 when one of the MacLean's suspected his wife of romancing with a Campbell and tied her to a rack [sic] in the Sound of Mull to be drowned by the tide. The Campbells rescued her and the Maclean was killed by the woman's brother, also a Campbell. History says that the Campbells are Proud, Haughty, and Handsome. Uncle Johnnie landed in Tioga Co. at Blackwells. He bought tracts of land from Pine Creek to the Cowanesque as are recorded in the land office at Wellsboro. The largest at Beacher [sic] Island where he acquired some 2,000 acres. He built a gristmill, saw mill and tannery. His brother Joseph came from Ireland with three sons and three daughters. I believe the sons came sometime before landing at Perth Amboy. They made their way to Jersey Shore the older brother parting. Joseph and James going on to Pittsburgh, never to meet again. Joseph Jr. and James coming up the Pine Creek and to the Island. On the voyage across the ocean a young man by the name of Samuel Hazlett fell in love with one of the daughters, Sally, and was married by a minister on the vessel. Joseph bought a part of his brother's land at the big bend above the Island, and his boys helped clear the land and build a big house. About this time a family of Blackwell, English people, came and settled on Pine Creek. There were three girls. Mrs. Blackwell had married a man named Clench [sic] and, after his death, married Enoch Blackwell. The daughters were Ann Clinch, Mary and Sarah. I believe that uncle Johnnie must have known the Blackwells in Philadelphia and induced them to come to Pine Creek, and Joseph, Sr. probably stopped on his way for a few days. Now that the family was settled in their home at Beacher [sic] Island the old man must have been concerned about the sons' future, so he told the boys one spring day that he was gong to Pine Creek, and as it was sugar making time, they were to turn the sap troughs over that ran on Sunday, but, as it was good run on Saturday, the boys thought it would be wicked to waste the good run, so they gathered it on Monday and made it into sugar and sold it and bought a log chain. When their father came back and he found out about the chain he would never sit by the fire made from the back lok [sic] which was drawn into the fireplace with the chain. I never heard how the old man managed to get his sons to marry the Blackwell girls, but I have a feeling that was why he made the trip to Pine Creek. It was not long till Joseph Jr married Ann Clinch and James married Mary Blackwell. The two built their homes on the great bend of the river. It was on the main highway along the Cowanesque. James built a large building for a tavern, with a bar for the liquor trade. But, just before the opening of the tavern a preacher holding revival meetings asked if he could have meetings in the tavern, and in the meetings, Campbell was converted and he took out the bar and stored it in the attic where it has laid for a hundred years. There were thirteen children in Joseph's family and twelve in James'. My mother was one, Harriet, married David Kemp. My father bought a farm three miles away from the Island. One of the beauty spots of Tioga Co. looking down on the Cowanesque Valley and the town of Nelson. I remember my mother, when I was a small boy, sitting by the window, with maybe a tear in her eye, and telling me of her girlhood life at the Island, and sometimes a story about the Campbells. There was a story about her uncle, Robert Steel. How he had come to Stony Fork with only a Tee Shirt and an axe on his shoulder, and had married the other Blackwell girl, Sara. I never heard of the Campbells on Nelson visiting each other (the Blackwells). But I remember thinking that some day I would go and see the place where Bobby Steel lived and got prosperous. A short time ago I set out to find the place. I found that it was not at Stony Fork, but out Dean Hill way. I eventually found the great, rambling mansion sitting on the hill side like a southern mansion house far from the road. When reaching the home I felt like I was intruding, then when there was answer to my ring and a pleasant-looking lady opened the door, it was not hard to explain why I had come to see my mother's uncle's home. I found that it was Dean English that now owned the home and that he was a grandson of Robert Steel; that he and Mrs. Steel have eight children. I believe that they are all college graduates and now in far away places. Mr. English said there were ten children in his grandfather's family, and that when they left the rooftree, they were each given a farm, $500.00, and a span of horses. I asked if there were others of the family of Steels living near, and he told me only a granddaughter left near the old home. I asked Mrs. English if there was a part of the house just as (Continued on page 4.) * * * p4 Letter To The Agitator (continued from page __) it was when Uncle Bobby lived here. Then she took me into a large hallway to the front of the house, and opened a door into a great room. The ceiling was about twelve feet high, large windows, a beautiful paneling of walled paper in golden colors. Mrs. English said that the room is just as it was decorated more than ninety years ago. The draperies, she said, were so far gone that she took them from the windows three years ago. Then I dropped my eyes to the floor which had the most beautiful carpet I ever saw. The colors as bright as if they were dyed yesterday. Mrs. English said that Robert Steel imported the carpet from England. So that was the home of Robert Steel, built more than a hundred years ago and looks today as solid and strong for another century. Did that carpet have a connecting link with history of the Kemps? If it had not been for a John Kemp that carpet may never have been woven. History records that King Edward III sent for one John Kemp, living in Flanders, to come to England and teach the people how to weave cloth and woolens, that the said king took him and his servants, goods and chattels under his Royal protection. That was in the Thirteenth century and again in the fifteenth century. The King of England commissioned a John Kemp to redistrict a large part of England. I think the Kemps first came from the Rhineland, where so many towns have the name Kemp as part of the town name. Harry C. Kemp * * * Wellsboro Agitator of June 30, 1960, p2 has: ---Harry C. Kemp celebrated his 92nd birthday at a picnic at the home of this son, Roscoe Kemp, n Nelson, Pa. June 19. Relatives attending were: Mr. and Mrs. Emerson Rice nd family, Mansfield, Mr. and Mrs. Curtis Kemp and Mr. and Mrs. Franklin Hall and family, Addison; Mr. and Mrs. Harold Clark and family, Painted Post; Mr. and Mrs. Claude Kemp and family, Beaver Dams, RD 2; Mr. and Mrs. John Kemp, Presho, N.Y.; Dorothy Kemp, Canton; Mr. and Mrs. T. Carlton Davis and family, Wellsboro; Mr. and Mrs. David Kemp, Rochester; Mr. and Mrs. Robert Kemp, Wellsboro; Mr. and Mrs. Robert Bartlett, Mansfield and Paul Kemp, Nelson, Pa. Guests were: Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Semonelti [sic].
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