Located near the central southern part of Bucks County, bounded northwest by Wrightstown Township, northeast by Upper and Lower Makefield Townships, southeast by Middletown Township, southwest by Northampton Township.  It was formerly established as a township in 1692. Newtown and Wrightstown one township and it is not positively known in what year Wrightstown was detached from Newtown. (Place Names of Bucks County)







Newtown Borough



 Biographica Sketches-Newtown \






James Parker Question


Stoopville  -  Named for the Stoop Family 3

bullet Mary Barnsley Chambers -Passport



bullet Newtown Presbyterian Church
Washington Ave & Chancellor St.
(215) 968-3861
bullet First Baptist Church - Newtown Grace Point
592 Washington Crossing Road
Newtown PA 18940
215. 968.2354 FAX 215.579.3101
bullet Bucks Central Church (PCA)
P.O. Box 1025
Newtown, PA 18940


Doylestown Democrat, March 9, 1880

A newly discovered newspaper sent to (Doylestown Democrat) paper. The Herald of Liberty published in Newtown by David Robinson, dated June 21, 1815. Printed on a sheet 20x 24 " and 16 columns of matter. No marriage or deaths were listed.

Trenton Times 1904 - NEWTOWN Elijah Torbert

They held meetings here till the morning of April 6th,
when they adjourned to meet at the inn of Amos Strickland, in Newtown-then called the Red Lion Inn. BRICK HOTEL, NEWTOWN, PA.

Built in 1764 by Amos Strickland on site of Red Lion inn. The third story, also the brick addition on west end built about 1837, by Capt. Joseph Archambault, a page of
Napoleon's. Continental soldiers and Hessian officers quartered here after the battle of
Trenton.Papers Read before the BCHS -

Yates House, Newtown Map of Newtown, 1703 Brick Hotel Newtown

George School

  The CHAMBERS family Willow Hill, Kindly submitted by: Molly May


The house is dated c 1720 and I have found information dating it to at least 1781 and am working my way back.  The main house and attached kitchen are mentioned in a real estate ad from 1863. Submitted by Chris Damien.


J.H. Battle History of Bucks County

Newtown was probably the only township regularly laid out and entirely disposed of to purchasers prior to the publication of Holme's map in 1684. William Perm's favorite theory of promoting settlements and encouraging improvement by laying out townsteads is nowhere more fully exemplified than in this instance. In one of the articles of agreement between the proprietor and purchasers, it was provided that they should be allowed to form a township when the amount of land jointly owned should aggregate five or ten thousand acres. In the case of Newtown, probably the only instance in which this provision was fully carried out, the location was first selected, then the purchase was made, and lastly the survey, ten per centum being allowed for the townstead. Sixteen wedgeshaped farms were laid out, varying in area from two hundred to seven hundred acres, and in length from three-fourths to two and one-half miles. Richard Price was the owner of the largest, which stretched across the Middletown border ; the land of Thomas Rowland adjoined this, being separated from it by Newtown creek; thence in regular order were the tracts of John Rowland, Eli Braber, Thomas Revel, Christopher Taylor, William Bennet," Governor's," Arthur Cook, John Otter, Jonathan Eldrey, Abraham Wharley, Benjamin Roberts, Shadrach Walley, William Sneed, and Israel Taylor, " to the place of beginning," viz., Richard Price's, at the corner of Lower Makefield, Middletown, and Newtown. Scarcely anything is known concerning these original owners of the soil. It seems evident that they must have coincided with Penn in his plans regarding the new experiment in town-founding. Christopher Taylor was a Yorkshire Puritan until 1652, when he became a Friend and endured severe persecution for the zeal with which he defended that sect. He lived at Bristol, was a member of assembly in 1682, and his son performed the first execution in the county. William Bennet, of Hammondsworth, in Middlesex, arrived in November, 1683, and died in March, 1684. It is disputed whether he lived in Newtown, counter-evidence seeming'to indicate that it was Falls instead. A comparison of John Cutler's survey of 1702 with that of 1684 shows that " the survival of the fittest" as a principle applies to land ownership as well as to natural phenomena. Thomas Rowland's five hundred acres had passed into possession of Stephen Twining, and William Buckman owned seven hundred acres formerly in possession of John Rowland. Shadrach Walley had absorbed the possessions of five of his former neighbors and become the proprietor of one thousand two hundred acres. Samuel Hough, Ezra Croasdale, Henry Paxson, Israel Morris, Thomas Hilborn, James Eldridge, and Mary Hayworth owned the land adjoining the Wrightstown and Upper Makefield borders. Yates is supposed to have been the father of James Yates who participated in the Indian war of 1737. He built a mill some time prior to 1728, when he sold it. William Buckman, of Billinghurst, in Sussex, settled first upon a patent of three hundred acres in Northampton, but purchased land in Newtown of Robert Webb and removed thither in 1695. The family of this name is one of the most numerously represented of the old families in the county.

The jury of 1792 referred to the township north of Middletown in one brief line, " Newtown and Wrightstown one township," thus showing that they were also known by their present names at that time. Tradition asserts that the former name was suggested by a remark of William Penn to the effect that it was the place designed for his new town. Names were not regarded as important at that early date as at present. It not infrequently occurred that when a township was erected in the early period of a county's history it was popularly referred to as " the new township" in the absence of a more appropriate designation, and in this case temporary usage may have crystallized into permanence without disturbing the general indifference on the subject. The area of Newtown is about seven thousand three hundred acres. Population, in 1810, nine hundred and eighty-two ; in 1820, one thousand and sixty ; in 1830, one thousand three hundred and forty-four ; in 1840, one thousand four hundred and forty ; in 1850, eight hundred and forty-two ; in 1860, one thousand; in 1870, nine hundred and eighty-three ; in 1880, nine hundred and seventy.

The most important town in this section of country in point of historical associations, religious and educational advantages, and business and industrial interests is Newtown. With the possible exception of Bristol, it is the oldest in the county, and has probably borne its present name longer than any other. It is said that the first house was built by Penn's personal orders at the corner of State and Mercer streets, and that Cornelius Spring was living there in 1692; although he may not have been the first inhabitant, he was the only one at that time. Under the conditions established by the survey of the townstead and adjacent farms, it would have been almost impossible for the town not to have come into existence. A number of roads, at present numbering eleven, were opened on the dividing lines between the farms, necessarily converging toward the town-plot in the center. The road to Bristol was laid out in 1693, this being the first link in the great Durham road. A second outlet to the river, by way of Dolington, was opened in 1723, and a third in 1724 to the falls. The village at that time consisted of some eight or ten log-houses. It derived a considerable impetus from the removal of the county-seat thither from Bristol in 1725. The center of population of the county had by that time moved northward to the extent of requiring this change. The court-house was located on Court street, near Sullivan, the prison directly west, and the county offices on the opposite side of State street. Five acres were bought for county purposes from John Walley and laid off into six squares of equal size. This was done in 1733, and is the earliest mention of any part of the town being regularly laid off. Strickland's lane, now known as Washington avenue, was laid out in 1784 eastward from Sycamore street. The square bounded by Washington, Liberty, Jefferson, and State streets was laid off by Joseph Archambault in 1835. The streets in regular order from east to west are Lincoln, Chancellor, Congress, Liberty (north of Washington), Court (south of Washington), State, and Sycamore ; from north to south, Jefferson, Green, Washington avenue, Sullivan, Mercer, and Penn. Newtown became a borough by act of assembly of April 16, 1838, the officers being a chief burgess and assistant burgess, elected annually, and nine councilmen, three of whom are elected triennially. The borough limits excluded Lincoln and Sycamore streets and all that part of the town north of Jefferson and south of a line extending from the creek to Chancellor street, crossing the Bristol road at right angles. A considerable addition to this on all sides was made in 1882. The population in 1850 was five hundred and eighty ; in 1860, six hundred and fifty-two ; in 1870, eight hundred and fifty-nine ; in 1880, one thousand and one.

The " Newtown common" has been the subject of much discussion, and possesses an interesting history. To encourage settlement, Penn arranged that purchasers should be allowed to locate in the townstead one-tenth as much land as they owned outside of it (the townstead was a mile square and contained six hundred and forty acres, nearly one-tenth of the area of the township). But, as the course of Newtown creek was considered too winding to be a boundary between lots, a strip of land containing forty acres was reserved on either side, known as the " common." August 16,1716, this was conveyed to Shadrach Walley, William Buckman, and John Frost, in trust for the people of the township " for the convenience of roads, passage to ye water, and other benefits to ye said township." The only proceeding of these commissioners of which anything is known is the grant of ten acres to Thomas Mawberry, for a site to locate his shop. Whether this was intended to be a self-perpetuating trusteeship, or whether the conveyance to Walley, Buckman, and Frost was merely a matter of form, those persons died without appointing their successors or providing in any way for a succession to the trust. The common thus became a common again, in more than one sense of the word. It could not be farmed, occupied, or owned by any individual, and yet its joint ownership was distributed among so many people, liable to so many abuses and productive of so little benefit, that it became a virtual public nuisance. At this juncture of affairs, William Buckman, Francis Murray, James Hanna, Thomas Storey, William Linton, and John D. Murray were vested with authority to procure the title from the state, dispose of the lands in question in such a way as to procure revenue from them, and apply the sum to the academy and schools. A patent was issued by the proper state authorities, July 8, 1796. The common was found to contain forty acres and ninety-seven perches. It was divided into fifty-five lots, all of which were sold at public auction, August 1, 1796, the titles for some being given in fee simple absolute, while ground-rents were reserved on others. Further legislation was rendered necessary by the failure of many of the purchasers to comply with the conditions of the sale, and in

1818, Enos Morris, Thomas Kennedy, Jacob Janney, Phineas Jenks, Joseph Worstall, and Thomas Buckman were appointed trustees of the common by act of the legislature, and under their administration the property was finally disposed of. It is probably fortunate for the regularity of the streets that the disposition of the common was thus delayed and amply discussed.

The revolutionary associations of the town are interesting. A pathetic story is told of a soldier boy, who, being sick, was obliged to remain behind his regiment, and placed with others to guard a number of persons engaged in making clothes for the continental army. They were at work in a house on State street below Washington, and he was in the garret, while the militia were dispersed at different places. The latter were obliged to retreat by a sudden attack of the tories, but the boy, from his garret window, shot several of the enemy before he himself received a mortal wound. He was buried in a vacant lot at the upper end of the town, but as no tombstone marks the spot, its exact location is not known. General Greene's headquarters during the campaign in this state were at the Brick hotel, then known as Hinkle's. It was from this place that he went in 1776 to the battle of Trenton, and upon his return some days later, the prisoners were confined in the Presbyterian church. Washington stopped at the house of John Harris, across the creek, for nearly a week, and troops were quartered in the vicinity. Human bones were discovered in the church in making some alterations years ago, supposed to have been the remains of one of the prisoners buried there.

Newtown was famous a century ago for the number of its hotels. The place must have been quite a village before the revolution. It is said that five hotels were in operation at that time. The oldest of these, and the only one that is continued as a hotel, is known as the " Brick." It was owned by Joseph Walby in 1748, and leased to Amos Strickland for twenty years from that date. The tenant became proprietor before the expiration of his lease, and at his death in 1779 was succeeded by his son-in-law, Mark Hapenny. It has passed through many vicissitudes of fortune in its long career. Its most distinguished proprietor was Joseph Archambault, a native Frenchman, born at Fontainebleau in 1796 ; he became a ward of the empire, a page of the emperor, and one of the twelve of his attendants who were permitted to accompany him to St. Helena, of whom he was the last survivor. He was not permitted to remain with his royal master, but sent to New York in 1817, having barely attained his majority. He was successful in business, and although the quiet pursuits of the country village in which he had made his home seemed to engross his attention, he always manifested an interest in training days, and although an old man at the time of the civil war, he engaged in it as a captain and major. He died at Philadelphia in 1874.

Newtown has received quite an impetus in recent years from the opening of the Philadelphia, Newtown & New York railroad. This has given it direct communication with Philadelphia ; it was opened in 1877, and although not a success financially, has done much to develop and sustain the industries and business of the town at its eastern terminus. An extensive manufactory of agricultural implements, tannery, mills, foundries, carriage works, and cigar factories are among the principal industrial establishments. The usual lines of business are well represented. Several fine business blocks have been built within recent years. If Newtown had continued as the county-seat, it might now hold the same position among the towns of the county it did at the beginning of the century. If Bucks county had been divided, its prestige and importance as the most central place in its southern division might still be unimpaired. But such speculations do not remedy the misfortunes they deplore; and in the recent industrial and business activity manifested, there is sufficient to indicate that this fact is being recognized.

The first National Bank of Newtown (No. 324) was authorized to do a banking business, March 17, 1864, with a capital of sixty thousand dollars, the original holders of which were thirty-five in number. The first charter having expired, a second was issued February 25, 1883. The bank organized March 4,1864, with Kinsey B. Tomlinson president, and Barclay J. Smith cashier. The present officers are as follows : president, Edward Atkinson; cashier, S. C. Case ; directors, Edward Atkinson, John L. Atkinson, John P. Agnew, Lewis Buckman, George W. Craven, Jonathan W. Gillam, Charles G. Knight, Niles Martin, William K. Walker. The present capital is one hundred thousand dollars ; the surplus fund, equal to three-fourths of that amount, has accumulated in the main since 1878.


Joseph Worstall, eldest son of Joseph and Susanna (Hibbs) Worstall, was born and reared in Newtown, and was actively associated with his father in the business enterprises established by the latter. He was one of the proprietors of the tannery at the time it was burned in 18.28, and suffered heavily in the financial wreck. His remaining days were spent in Newtown township on a farm he purchased, and where he died April I, 1856. He married in 1808 Jane Heston, daughter of Colonel Edward Heston, the founder of Hestonville, Philadelphia, who was a native of Makefield township, Bucks county, being a son of Jacob and Mary (Warner) Heston, and a grandson of Zebulon Heston, an early settler in Wrightstown. He was captain of the Sixth Company, Seventh Battalion, Philadelphia County Militia, in 1777, and later was commissioned lieutenantcolonel.The children of Joseph and Jane (Heston) Worstall were as follows: Sarah Ann, who married Jacob Hibbs; Edward H., see forward; Hannah C., who married (first) Pearson Scarborough, of Solebury, and (second) Henry Magill; Joseph, who married Mary Ann Van Buskirk. and lived and died in Warrington; and Isaac H., of Solebury, who married (first) Sarah Jane Ely and (second') Amy Ely.Edward H. Worstall, eldest son of Joseph and Jane (Heston) Worstall, was born at the old homestead on Penn street, Newtown, October 19. i8fi, and was reared and educated in Newtown. He married November I, 1838. Maria E. Smith, daughter of Joseph and Mary {Belts) Smith of Upper Makefield. The descent of George Worstall in the Smith line is as follows: I. William Smith. 1684, Wrightstown, formerly of Yorkshire, England, married Mary Croasdale. 9 mo. 20, 1690. and had nine children: his second wife was Mercy

, by whom he had seven children.

2. Thomas Smith married Elizabeth Sanders, 6 mo., 1727, and they had eight children; they were the first settlers on the Windybush farm. 3. Samuel Smith married Jane Schofield, 175°- anfl they Tiad ten children. 4. Thomas Smith married Elanor Smith. 4 mo. 15. 1778. and they had six children. 5. Joseph

Smith married Mary Belts, 1808, and they had five children. 6. Maria Smith married Edward H. Worstall, n mo. I, 1838, and they had five children. 7. George C. Worstall.After his marriage Edward H. Worstall located at the Smith tannery at Windy Bush, in Upper Makefield, where he resided until April I, 1842, when he purchased the old tannery property in Newtown, formerly his grandfather's, that had been recently sold by the sheriff as the property of Thomas H. Buckman, and revived the old industry so long conducted by his father and grandfather. He purchased the following year the house where his grandfather lived and died, and subsequently purchased much of the property that had belonged to his grandfather, as well as thirty-five acres of land, the greater part of which had belonged to his uncle James Worstall. He operated the tannery and farm until 1882, during the last eleven years of the time having associated with him his youngest son, Willis G. Worstall. During the last ten years of his life he lived retired in Newtown. He died February 18, 1891, and his widow Maria E. on January u, 1898, Their children were: George C., the subject of this sketch; Lavinia, wife of George C. Blackfan, of Newtown; Josiah S., born September 7, 1843, died March 3, 1883; Willis G., born July 9, 1846, married Lydia Croasdale, and is now a member of the firm of Worstall Brothers & Co.; and Lettie. born February 28, 1850. wife of William Eyre, of Newtown. Josiah was for a number of years associated in business with his brother George C., in Newtown; he married Sarah J. Uber, and left two daughters, now residing in West Chester, Pennsylvania. .

George C. Worstall was born in Upper Makefield, but his parents having removed to Newtown when he was two and a half years old he was reared in that town and has spent his whole life there. On his marriage in 1865 he settled on a farm on the Yardleyville turnpike, purchased for him by his father of Nicholas Willard, and resided there until 1893. In 1868 in connection with his brother Josiah, he started a brick and coal yard thereon, which they conducted until 1880. when they removed to the present location of the firm of \Vorstall Brothers, where they had started a hay press in connection with their younger brother Willis G. a year previous. The old tannery was abandoned in 1882 and torn down in 1887. and the land laid out in building lots and built upon. In 1880 the firm erected a feed mill, and eight vears later built a full roller process flour mill, which wilh the brick making, feed and coal business they still conduct. The hay business was abandoned in 1893, being burned out in February.

George C. Worstall has been one of the pioneers in practically every pul. lie improvement and corporate enterprise in and about Newtown since his arrival at manhood. Edward H. Worstall & Sons owned a twentieth interest in the Newtown and Philadelphia Railroad, and were among the most active promoters of that enterprise. George C. was chairman of the meeting that organized the Newtown Artesian Water Company in 1888, that now supplies the town with water, and has been its president from its organization to the present time. He was one of the organizers and an officer of the Newtown Building Association in 1867, and is a director in the present Association, organized in 1887. He was one of the organizers of the Newtown Electric Light and Power Company, and a director since its organization. He was one of the active promoters and secretary of the Newtown, Langhorne & Bristol Railway Company, and of the Newtown Electric Railway Company, that built the trolley line from Bristol to Newtown and to Doylestown, and is still secretary and director of the latter company. He was one of the organizers of the Standard Telephone Company, as well as or the Newtown & Yardley Street Railway Company, of which he is president. He is president of the Newtown Canning Company, secretary of the Excelsior Bobbin and Spool Company, a director of the Newtown Cemetery Company, director of the Bridgetown & Newtown Turnpike Company, and president of the Newtown Reliance Horse Company. During the Civil war he twice responded to his country's call, first in 1862, when he went to Harrison's Landing. Virginia, as a nurse, and assisted in caring for the sick and wounded, and second in 1863 as a member of an emergencv regiment. He is a member of T. H. Wyncoop Post, G. A. R., of Newtown.

He married, March 22, 1865, Hulda A. Price, daughter of Samuel and Sarah (Belts) Price of Buckingham, who died January I, 1800. They were the parents of two children.—Edward A., who died in his seventh year, and Emma L., residing with her father in Newtown. He married (second) February To. 1902. Mary W. Barnsely. daughter of John and Mary (Hough) Barnsley, of Newtown, who died September 24. 1004.  Mary Barnsley Chambers -Passport In politics Mr. Worstall is a Republican He has served several terms in town council, and filled other local offices He was appointed postmaster of Newtown in February. 1001. and was reappointed in February. 1005. He is a member of the Bucks County Historical Society, and actively interested in its work.

History of Bucks County, Pennsylvania: from the discovery of the Delaware to the present time, Volume 3


William Smith Janney, M.D., 1535 North Broad street, Philadelphia,, is a member of the family whose genealogy is given under the name of Stephen T. Janney, of Newtown township. He was a son of William Janney, who was born in 1810 on the old homestead, which has been in possession of the family since 1684, and who has been almost all his life a farmer in Newtown and Lower Makefield townships, but is now living retired in Newtown borough. His wife, Rebecca, is a daughter of William and Sarah Smith, of Solebury township, where she was born in 1811. Her father was a descendant of Thomas Smith, who came from York, England, in 1686, and settled in Wrightstown, this county. They have had eight children, of whom seven are now living. William S. was the second child, and was born August 12,1833, in Lower Makefield township. After leaving the district school he attended the Newtown academy, the Bellevue academy, and finished his education as a private pupil of the late Joseph Fell, of Buckingham township. When 17 years old he taught school at Brownsburg, and afterward at Lumberville, at the same time reading medicine; and attended the lectures at the Pennsylvania Medical college at Philadelphia, during the winters of 1852, 1853 and 1854, graduating in March, 1854. He began the practice of his profession at Tullytown, this county, where he remained two years, removing in April, 1856, to Leavenworth, Kansas, just in time to become involved in the noted " border war." Returning east in the fall of the same year, he began practising in Woodsville, Mercer county, N. J., where he stayed until 1870 ; but during that time, in 1862, he went into the army as assistant surgeon of the 21st N. J. Volunteers, and was promoted to surgeon of the 22d regiment. His regiment, during their ten months' service, took part in the battles of Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville, and he had ample opportunity for the use of all his skill. In 1870 the doctor removed to a plantation in Caroline county, Va., where he stayed until 1874, when he renewed the practice of his profession at Eighth and Oxford streets, Philadelphia, removing in 1877 to his present residence, on the southeast corner of North Broad and Oxford streets. In 1880 he was elected coroner of the city of Philadelphia by over twenty thousand majority. He has also for the past twelve years been one of the surgeons of the Philadelphia hospital, and deservedly stands high in his profession. In November, 1855, he was married to Sarah Ellen, daughter of Benjamin and Mary Beans, of Lower Makefield township, where she was born in April, 1835. They have had four children, two of whom, a son and a daughter, died in infancy. The survivors are Marianna, born November 2, 1873, and William, born February 18, 1876. Dr. Janney is a member of Post 2, G. A. R., of Philadelphia, and in politics is a republican.

J.H. Battle History of Bucks County


Page last updated: August 24, 2021

ABRAHAM LINCOLN (1864) 2nd Inaugural

With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan - to do all which may achieve a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations. 


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This website was created as a guide to the history and genealogy of Bucks County Pennsylvania. All efforts have been made to be accurate and to document sources. Some of the material has been contributed and published, with permission, in good faith. All effort has been made to be accurate as possible, and to refer to sources used. If you see an error, please let me know. This website was designed to be informative, a guide to Bucks County history and genealogical research, and hopefully fun. I can't guarantee that all the data is accurate.

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