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History of the Pan-Handle, West Virginia.
J. H. Newton, G. G. Nichols, & A. G. Sprankle, 1879; pages 352-353.

[Typed & presented by Linda Cunningham Fluharty, 2002.]

     George B. Crawford is a native of Wellsburg, Brooke county, West Virginia. He received such school training as the town afforded during his youth. At an early age he developed a taste for books, newspapers and writing. As he advanced in years he more plainly saw the necessity of a good education, and discovered that the limited training that he received at three dollars per quarter (the price of schooling prior to the free school system) was not sufficient; therefore he set about to gather such information as he desired and required, and is still a close student in those things that pertain to a plain practical every-day life. About eight or ten years of his youth was spent in working in the cotton factory at Wellsburg, where he had the advantage of receiving occasionally instruction in the different branches of mechanics from some of the best workmen in the country, among whom was Mr. John Carle, one of the original proprietors of the mill, who was unsurpassed in turning in both iron and wood, steam engineering, pattern making, carpentering and a general knowledge of mechanics. In 1860, the subject of our notice quit the cotton mill and engaged with Harvey, Manser & Co., as a finisher of straw wrapping paper in their mill on Fleet street. This position he held until the spring of 1861, when the mill suspended operations.
     When the call was made for soldiers for a three months campaign our subject enlisted in the U. S. volunteer army, and was assigned to Company "G," 1st Virginia Infantry. Between the time of his discharge from the three months' campaign and August 1862, he was engaged in various pursuits. When he again enlisted in the U. S. volunteer army "for three years, unless sooner discharged," being assigned to Company "G," 1st Regiment Virginia Volunteer Infantry. On the 11th day of September, 1863, at Moorefield, Hardy county, W. Va., while he was on duty, with five companies of his regiment, (the remaining five companies of the regiment, and the one to which he belonged to (G.) remained at a place called Petersburg,) the battalion was surprised by Capt. McNeil's Confederate troops and the most of them captured, including our subject. They were taken to the City of Richmond, Va., and temporarily lodged in Libby Prison, afterwards transferred to Belle Isle - where Mr. Crawford remained until the 6th day of March, 1864, when he was paroled. During the spring he was exchanged and joined his regiment, with which he remained until his discharge by General Army Orders, June 25th, 1865, at Clarksburg, W. Va.
     Returning home, he engaged in various pursuits until December, 1867, when he engaged with Messrs. Barclay & Lloyd, wholesale and retail grocers in Wellsburg, as salesman; also, as deputy to Mr. W. C. Barclay, who was sheriff of the county, for four years, term beginning January 1, 1868. After serving the above firm four years and a half, he left and went to Pittsburgh, where he engaged with J. S. Dilworth & Co., wholesale grocers, as a general worker about their establishment, remaining with them until February, 1872. He returned to Wellsburg, and soon afterwards engaged with Thomas B. Litton, as a grocer clerk. In a short time he and Little formed a partnership which was short lived. In 1873, he bought the stock of Litten and launched our for himself, continuing in the business until the summer of 1876, when he quit, turning his attention to the general repair business, making household effects a specialty at which he is at this time, January, 1879, actively engaged. During the winter of 1875-76, he designed and executed what he called a Centennial Memorial Bracket, which is composed of seventy-two varieties of wood, native of West Virginia, and containing over two hundred pieces. The work is of an oblong oval shape, and is six feet in length, by thirty-five inches in width at the widest point. It contains the names of the signers of the Declaration of Independence engraved in the wood, a piece of wood being assigned to each state. Below this, on a shield shaped section, is the names of the Presidentsf of the United States from Washington to Grant. There are stars for each state, and circles for the territories. The thirteen original states are represented, as well as many other mottoes and patriotic devices. The work was sent to Philadelphia during the Centennial exhibition of 1876, and placed on exhibition in the West Virginia state building, where it was admired and commented upon by thousands of visitors. The press throughout the country, at that time, paid glowing tributes to this piece of work. It is now in the hands of Mr. Crawford. Mr. Crawford, a number of years since, acquired a taste for newspaper writing. He has contributed to the Steubenville Herald, the Odd Fellows COMPANION, American ODD FELLOW, Hancock County, W. Va., COURIER, and is now the regular correspondent,at Wellsburg, of the Wheeling Daily INTELLIGENCER, occupying that position since 1875.
     During the early part of 1876 he wrote up the history of Brooke county for the INTELLIGENCER, which is said to be quite interesting. During the summer of 1878 he furnished the INTELLIGENCER with the extracts from a diary kept by his father during a series of years of piloting on the Ohio and Mississippi rivers, which were well received by the public. His father, Cornelius Howard Crawford, was a son of Thomas Crawford, Esq., who resided on a farm near Bethany, W. Va., now owned by Wm. Rodgers, which he disposed of in 183- and removed to Illinois. Soon afterward he moved to Lawrence county, Missouri, where he died in 1837. C. H. Crawford remained in Brooke county, locating at Wellsburg, where he married Maria S., daughter of John and Mary Moren. There were born to them seven children, George B., Oscar F., Mary Helen, Narcissa, Eliza, John M. and William M. Mary Helen, Narcissa and Eliza died in infancy, the remaining four still survive, three residing in Wellsburg and one, John M., in Steubenville. C. H. Crawford died in Wharton, Wharton county, Texas, August 1859, his widow survives him, and resides with her son George. Oscar F., John M. and Wm. M. are are married.
     John Moren came to Wellsburg in 1806. He was born in Washington, Washington county, Pa., March 14, 1790. He learned the cabinet making trade with a Mr. McConnell at Wellsburg. In 1810 he married Mary Newhouse, who was born in Montgomery county, Md., January 20, 1793. Mr. Moren enlisted as a private in Captain Moses Congleton's company of Virginia troops recruiting at Wheeling during the war of 1812, and marched with the company to Norfolk, Va., and back. He always resided in Wellsburg after locating there in 1806. He died on the 24th day of January, 1876. At the time of his death there was not remaining in Wellsburg a living soul who was there when he came. His wife survived him but a short time, passing away July 12, 1877. They were blessed with ten children, five boys and five girls, viz: Eliza, Caroline, maria S., Narcissa D., Hariett D., George W., John T., William, James and Robert. William died in 1871, Eliza died in 1849, Caroline died in 1871, Eliza died in 1879, James went to California in 1852. After being there a few months he never was heard of again by his friends at Wellsburg.


History of the Upper Ohio Valley,
Vol. I, pages 608-609. Brant & Fuller, 1890.

     George B. Crawford, a prominent citizen of Wellsburg, and mayor since May, 1889, is a native of that city, born November 14, l838. His father, Cornelius H. Crawford, was one of the prominent men of his day and one of the best Ohio river pilots, a calling in which he engaged for some years, although he was reared upon the farm and in his latter years was a carpenter. He was born on Buffalo creek, near Bethany, W. Va., September 8, 1814, and died at Wharton, Tex., August 28, 1859, while sojourning there and pursuing his occupation. By his marriage to Maria S., daughter of John and Mary Moren, he had seven children, George B., Oscar F.; Helen, deceased; Narcissa and Eliza, both deceased; John M. and William M. The mother, a devoted Christian and benevolent lady, died March 3, 1884, in the sixty-ninth year of her age. Her father, who came to Wellsburg in 1806, enlisted in the war of 1812, but had proceeded only as far as Northfolk when peace was declared. George B. Crawford was first employed at ten years of age turning a wheel in a "rope walk," was subsequently in a cotton factory until 1860, and then in a paper mill until 1861. In the latter year he enlisted in Company G of the First Virginia volunteer infantry for three months' service, on August 4, 1862, re- enlisted for three years. As a veteran he served until the close of the war, being discharged at Clarksburg, W. Va. June 23, 1865, as a member of Company D, Second regiment, West Virginia veteran infantry. His command was one distinguished for gallantry, and he saw active and dangerous service in all the campaigns of the Shenandoah valley, except while held by the enemy. He had the misfortune to be captured at Moorfield, W. Va., September 11, 1863, and was taken to Libby prison, and thence thirty-six hours later, to Belle Isle, where until March 7, 1864, he suffered great deprivations, his rations toward the last consisting of only a finger-length square of corn bread twice a day, and his bed being the sand, under poor tents, without covering, and no fuel. Being paroled at Richmond, March 7, 1864, he was transported to Annapolis, then to Camp Chase, Ohio, and he then remained at home on furlough until June, 1864, when he was exchanged. He then joined his regiment in Sheridan's army in the Shenandoah valley, and fought till peace was established. In 1867 Mr. Crawford engaged in the grocery business with Barclay & Lloyd, as salesman, and also as deputy for Mr. Barclay, then sheriff, for four and a half years. He was subsequently employed at Pittsburgh with J. S. Dilworth & Co., wholesale grocers, and then with T. B. Litten, at Wellsburg. Purchasing the store of Mr. Litten, he continued the grocery business until 1876, since which time he has been engaged in woodworking in its various mechanical departments. His most famous work in this line was constructed while he was in business, and was an object of great attention during its exhibition at Wheeling, and afterward at the Centennial exposition of 1876. This is a Centennial bracket, composed of seventy-six varieties of wood native to West Virginia, joined in a mosaic thirty-five inches by five and a half feet in area. On this an elaborate design is worked out, including the American eagle, the flag, stars representing the thirteen original states, "Liberty," "Union," and "Independence," "In God We Trust," the opening sentence of the Declaration of Independence, followed by the names of the signers, each state being represented by a different wood, and after this "Philadelphia, July 4, 1776," "Constitution," names of the presidents from Washington to Grant, the figures "100," "Esto Perpetua" closing with the name of the maker, "Geo. B. Crawford, Wellsburg, West Virginia, 1876." Surrounding all are stars for each state in 1876 and appropriate emblems for the territories. Mr. Crawford has been active in public affairs, and has rendered efficient service for several terms each as city clerk and councilman. In fraternal matters he has been equally active and has held prominent official positions in the Masonic order, the G. A. R. and the Union Veteran Legion. In politics he is a republican. Mr. Crawford was married February 13, 1889, to Miss Margaret, daughter of Reuben and Bethira Hale, of Holliday's Cove, Hancock county, W. Va. They have been blessed with one child, Maria Hale, born February 14, 1890.