HomeNorwich townshiptail

History of Norwich Township

The first pioneers west of the Scioto River and south of Hayden Run came in 1807. Although Norwich Township was established in 1813, the present boundary was not defined until 1830. Some of the early settlers were emancipated slaves from Virginia. By 1878, they had been integrated into the school system which had started as a one room school in 1814 at a site known as "Smiley's Grove". 

The Fishinger Family operated a sawmill and gristmill near a crossing over the Scioto River. The first metal bridge at this site was constructed in 1903 and replaced in 1989.

The Columbus, Piqua and Indiana railroad was opened on July 4, 1853. John R. Hilliard, a native of Piqua, Ohio, was on the Board of Directors of this railroad. He purchased land along what he knew would be the right-of-way, platted and recorded the village on September 1, 1853. Soon there were general stores, churches, schools and a post office. Hilliard was incorporated in 1869 with approximately 280 persons. Because much of the farming area in the western part of the township was swampy until drainage was improved, the residents spoke of the areas as "Mudsock".

In the southeast corner of the township along the Scioto River may be found a large limestone deposit, one of the largest in the world. At the turn of the century, the Columbus Stone Company brought Italian immigrants to work in the quarries.

Wesley Chapel Methodist Church was organized in 1832. A township cemetery was established adjacent to it, and the first burial was in 1836. In 1870, a law was passed allowing use of public funds to improve the road which led from a village to a township cemetery. Hilliard Cemetery Road answered this description; it started in Hilliard, continued to the Scioto River and turned south to the cemetery.

This picture was taken at the corner of Cemetery and Latimer Roads in the 1800's
Township Offices Roads & Wesley Chapel Cemetery
Fire Stations