by Christine Lorraine
Near Albion, PA lies the quaint little community historically known as Wellsburg or Lundy’s Lane. It’s time to shine a curiosity-piquing light on this place with a fun 10-question trivia quiz comprised of interesting pieces of knowledge regarding its past. Answers and a scoring guide can be found below the questions.
NOTE: All questions, answers, facts and quotes in this quiz are derived from a booklet authored in 1927 by Harriet Ward titled “Early Days in Wellsburg.” In this publication, she covers the development of Wellsburg from the early 1800s to 1927 when her booklet was published.
1. What type of factory was originally housed in a structure located on the corner just north of the Universalist Church in the 1800s?
2. Back in Wellsburg’s early days, what were Hermit Frazer’s Sunday suit trousers made out of?
b. Flour sacks
c. Plastic bags
d. Wooden planks
3. What’s the name of the spring that contains minerals which supposedly cured a handful of folks who suffered from gallstones?
a. The Frazier Glen Mineral Spring
b. The Spring of Summer
c. Pont Artesan Spring and Spa
d. Erie Canal Spring
4. “The main road from Erie to Meadville through Wellsburg by way of Pont, was formerly a blazed path made by a man who ________ a _________ through the dense forest.” ~ quote is from “Early Days in Wellsburg” by Harriet Ward.
a. cleared a road
b. led a posse
c. trudged a trail
d. traced a bear
5. What was the going rate for a dozen eggs in Wellsburg in 1841?
c. one cup of salt
d. 1/12th of a British pound
6. The US Postal Service would not allow a post office named Wellsburg due its proximity to other towns with similar names. Therefore the post office was opened under the name of Lundy’s Lane. Why was that name selected?
a. It was the name of Joseph Lundy’s best dairy cow
b. There was a long lane bordering the creek back then
c. A local veteran suggested that name after a battle in which he fought
d. It was actually a misspelling of “Lundy’s Land”
7. The first known log cabin was built in Wellsburg back in 1813 by Samuel Wells and his family. What were the windows covered with?
a. Pieces of tar paper
c. Recycled plastic bottles
d. Greased paper
8. In 1854 Wellsburg residents dressed in white and held a meeting in the cemetery because:
a. They were prepping for the end of the world
b. They feared an attack from Canada and were preparing for battle
c. The cow named Lundy had passed
d. It was a dress rehearsal for the play “Howling After Dark”
9. Early settler Samuel Wells purchased 500 acres of land for several dollars an acre, then did what with it?
a. Flipped the property and tripled his investment in one year
b. Divvied it up between his seven children
c. Built the county’s first amusement park, “Lundy’s Landing”
d. Constructed a tower tall enough to see Pittsburgh
10. Experienced workers were brought to Wellsburg to help operate which kind of mill, an enterprise that was quickly abandoned?
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A N S W E R S
Reminder – All questions, answers, facts and quotes in this quiz are derived from a booklet authored in 1927 by Harriet Ward titled “Early Days in Wellsburg.” In this publication, she covers the development of Wellsburg from the early 1800s to 1927 when her booklet was published.
1. c – Broom.
“A broom factory was originally started by Frank Ziegler in a building on the corner north of the Universalist Church, but grew until it demanded larger quarters, when a building was erected at the fork of the road at the south end of town,” according to historian Harriet Ward in 1927.
2. b – Flour sacks.
“Hermit Frazier’s best Sunday suit had white trousers made from flower sacks. On a certain Sunday he had a new pair which his wife had made the day before, but by mistake he turned the side with the large bright red and black printing, ‘Best Family Flour, Albion Mill,’ on the outside. As Mr. Frazier entered the churchyard, a passerby jokingly asked him where the clothing store was. Mr. Frazier in reply said that he did not know of any, but he could tell him where he got his trousers,” as written by local historian Harriet Ward in 1927.
3. a – The Frazier Glen Mineral Spring.
“There was a house built near a mineral spring in a glen where Mr. and Mrs. Frazier and the two sons lived. The location has commonly been called ‘The Frazier Glen Mineral Spring.’ The water contains minerals which have cured several people of gallstones and other ailments. There are still in existence a few leaflets written years ago advertising the water. “ ~ local historian Harriet Ward in 1927.
4. d – Traced a bear.
“The main road from Erie to Meadville through Wellsburg by way of Pont, was formerly a blazed path made by a man who traced a bear through the dense forest,” according to local historian Harriet Ward in 1927.
5. a – 9¢. That same year the price of a broom was 17¢
6. c – A local veteran suggested that name after a battle in which he fought.
“About 1852, the people felt that a post office was needed, and they sent a petition to the government. The only difficulty was that the name “Wellsburg” must be changed, because there were post offices in Wellsville and Wellsboro. Major James Fleming, who had been in the battle of Lundy’s Lane in the War of 1812, suggested the name Lundy’s Lane. This suited everyone, and became the name of the post office.” ~ From booklet by local historian Harriet Ward in 1927.
7. d – Greased paper.
“In 1813, Samuel Wells with his family built the first log cabin in Wellsburg on the farm that is now owned by Stephen Rhoads. The windows were holes cut through the logs and covered with greased paper. The door was an open space with a blanket hung to keep out the cold. Neither Mr. Wells nor any other settler of that time had stoves, but they had fireplaces build of mud, stones, bits of straw, and sticks about an inch square. The chimney was made from the same materials,” explained local historian Harriet Ward in 1927.
8. a. They were prepping for the end of the world.
“In 1854 prophets prophesied that the world was coming to an end on a certain day. Several nights before, men, women, and children met in the hall of Harley Sherman’s store and held meetings of song service and sermons, preparing for the coming of the end of the world. When the time came all the people dressed in white and went to the cemetery and held a meeting there. All were ready to enter the other and better world. On that day an eclipse of the sun was visible here,” as stated by local historian Harriet Ward in 1927.
9. b. Divvied it up between his seven children.
“Samuel Wells was a man who had a large family. He bought five hundred acres of land at a cost of a few dollars per acre (now valued at one hundred dollars per acre) which he divided among his seven children. His son Otis fenced off a square, now called the Park, for the benefit of ALL the Wellsburg children, and a section of twenty-five acres for village lots,” according to local historian Harriet Ward in 1927.
10. c. Flax.
“On the creek and at the end of the short street leading west from the Baptist Church was at one time a large flax mill. This industry was expected to be a permanent and important factor in the town. Experienced flax and linen workers were brought to Wellsburg to aid in operating the mill. The farmers took an interest in the enterprise and raised flax, but this climate provided unsuitable for the linen industry and the mill was soon abandoned,” said local historian Harriet Ward in 1927.
0-2 Correct: Consider this – you just ingested and digested a bunch of delicious historical tidbits that you didn’t know before so yay! This is a good thing, considering that local history isn’t really taught in schools. It’s up to community members to keep the past alive in the minds and hearts of those who live there.
3-6 Correct: Nice work – many of the questions asked in this quiz weren’t common knowledge, which is what makes it unique. Answers couldn’t be easily Googled, and some were written to enable a sort of process of elimination that could point to the correct answer. Now that you’ve picked up an assortment of new knowledge seeds, plant them wherever you can and help them grow and stay alive.
7-10 Correct: Amazing! Your local roots have grown deep and your mind possesses a treasure trove of historical knowledge. Either that or you’re exceptionally lucky or good at guessing. Regardless, you should extend your arm, and pat yourself on the back for being well-informed on your Wellsburg/Lundy’s Lane historical details. Then pass this quiz along to others and help propogate the past.