The first of the colony had as neighbors when they came to New Switzerland, a family named Maguire who lived in a cabin near where William Halls house stands, John Rayl who lived in the bottom opposite the foot of Vevay Island, Heathcoat Picket the grandfather of Benjamin Picket living near where the Brick house stands on the farm above the mouth of Hunts Creek now owned by Julius McMakin - Griffith Dickason and William Cotton who lived on Indian Creek near to where John Bakes resides.

They were almost unknown, in 1812 & 1813 Lucien Gex taught School in a log house about where Samuel E. Pleasants resides - he taught french only. Nathan Peak who lived on a 20 acre piece of land in Section 12 which 20 acres of land is now owned by William Protsman taught school at his house. Samuel Butler is perhaps the only Scholar who attended his school now living. After the town was laid out the lot on which Joseph Peelman resides and the two next to them belonged to the "Vevay Seminary". A school house of hewed logs was built on the spot where Peelmans house stands and school was regularly taught there. James Rous father of Zadig and Percy Rous taught in that school house. At an early day after the town of Vevay was laid out a School was taught in a Small log house on Ferry Street, below where the Russell house stands. One Sylvanus Waldo a brother of Otis S. Waldo’s father taught School for some time. The writer recollects of being a pupil in each of these schools.

The first child born in the Colony was a daughter of Mr. Bettens in 1803. She was the wife of Henry Brachman, Esqr. of Cincinnati and died a few years since. The next was a daughter of Mr. Morerod’s born in 1804, she is still living in Vevay. That daughter was Mrs. Harriet Tandy.

The next was a daughter of Daniel Dufour born in 1804. She is still living, was the wife of John M. King who was the first Auditor of Switzerland County after the Creation of that office in 1841.

In the spring of 1813 it having been decided by John Francis Dufour to layoff the town of Vevay - the lots in the original part of Vevay were laid out partly in the Woods, and partly in a "deadening" & some cleared land. The town plat was made out and recorded in the Recorders office of Jefferson County at Madison. Notice of the sale of the lots, was given through the papers published at Cincinnati, Louisville, Lexington and Frankfort - the sale took place in November 1813. The sale was cried by John M. Johnson, Elisha Golay acting as clerk of the sale. At that sale persons from abroad purchased lots; Jeremiah Smock of Fayette County Ky. purchased lot No. 135 Jacob Mikesell purchased lot No. 133 Wm McIlvain lot No. 124, Peter Mikesell No. 134, John Patterson 129, John Hill of Scott County Ky No. 125, Joab Madison No. 152 Jessee Lamme Nos. 165, 166, 167, and 168, Abner K. Starr No. 123, John Scott Nos. 85, and 87, Joseph Noble Nos. 58 and 91. These are the persons from abroad who purchased lots at the sale. The price of lots varied considerably the lowest price being $22 for lot No. 26 - the highest price being $92 for lot No. 66. Other lots were sold during the fall and winter at private sale.

During the Spring and Summer of 1814 buildings were being put up rapidly in different parts of the town. The first house put up was a log house by Samuel Butler and his father, on the lot where the Thiebaud house in which the Bank is now kept stands. The same spring Joshua Jones who came down the river from about Grants Creek had a set of house logs hewed at Grants Creek ready to put up a house there - but he rafted them in the river, floated them down to Vevay, and built a house with them on the lot now owned by James F. Bristow - on Main Cross Street - and there commenced making split bottomed chairs.

John Scott the father-in-law of James Cole, build a hewed log house on the lot where the New Baptist church now stands, and carried on his trade of Tailor. During the spring of 1814. John Dumont came to Vevay and built a house on the spot where the present building owned by Amie Morerod stands. As the town had during the spring shown some permanent signs of improvement and the population of the territory which was that year organized into a County had augmented to 1600 and was constantly augmenting, it was proposed to have a county organized off the upper end of Jefferson county to suit the convenience of the Citizens who were compelled to go from above where Patriot now stands to Madison, to transact their ordinary county business accordingly a petition signed by the citizens was presented to the Territorial Legislature praying for the organization of such county. John Francis Dufour and Elisha Golay [who] were the most active and influential friends of the measure attended the session of that Legislature as lobby members and had the satisfaction of having their efforts crowned with Success.

Entry of some of the lands
in Town. 1., Range 1 E. Frac. Sec. 31, entered July 2, 1801 by John Hopkins containing 322 acres - Sec. 6, and fracto Sec. 5, 7 and 8. Decr 2 1806 containing 1507 acres by Oliver Orms by Frac. Sec 18 July 24, 1809 by John Andrews, containing 360 acres. In town 2 Range 1 E. Sec 31, Frac. Sec. 29, 30 and 32 entered April 26, 1804 by Patrick Donahoe containing 1412 acres. In town 1 Range 1 W. Frac. Sec 5 and 6 entered Sept 10, 1804 by John Buchannon and William Philips containing 208 acres. In Town 2 R. 1 west Sec. 6, entered Sep 4, 1804 by Patrick Donahoe and containing 647 acres N. E. qr. of Sec 27 entered July 15th, 1805 by Lewis Jones containing 160 acres. Frac. Sec. 34, entered Sept 18, 1804 by Martin Baum containing 376 acres. Frac Sec 35 entered Sept 4, 1804 by Patrick Donahoe containing 505 acres Frac. Sec. 36 entered July 2, 1801, by Thomas Hopkins, containing 626 acres - There was no other lands entered in this Township until in 1812.

In Town. 1 Range 2w Frac. Sec. 1 and 2 entered by John James Dufour April 10, 1801 containing 797 acres - Frac. Sec 3, entered by Thomas Hopkins July 14, 1801 containing 303 acres. Frac Sec. 7 and 18 entered by John James Dufour and his associates Sept 14, 1804. No other lands entered in this Township untill 1813

In Town. 2, R. 2w S. E. qr Sec 25 entered by William White December 25,1809 containng 160 acres – N. E. qr. see 36 entered Dec 14, 1809 by John Fenton containing 160 acres S. W. qr Sec 35 entered March 16, 1810 by John Gullion containing 160 acres - No other land entered in this township until 1812. In Town. 3. R. 2w no land entered in this Township until 1812.

In Town 2 Range 3w N.W. qr See 2 and S. W qr Sec. 2 entered Oct 9, 1804 by Griffith Dickason and Stilwell Heady containing 325 acres - See 12 and 15 and Frac Secs 13, 14, 22, 23, 27 entered June 11, 1802 by John James Dufour and his associates containing 2.,357 acres - Frac. Sec 32 and 33. Dec 12, 1809 by George Craig containing 432 acres - No other lands entered in this Township until 1811.

In Town 3 R. 3w S. E. qr Sec. 34 entered by William Cotton June 10, 1805 containing 164 1/2 acres

No other lands entered in this township until 1811 In Town 4, R. 3w, none entered until 1817.

In Town 1 R. 4 Frac Sec 1. entered Jany 11, 1810 by James McKay. Frac. Sec. 2, entered Sept. 22, 1804 by Thomas Thompson. In T. 2 R. 4w, the first entry was made in 1815 the last 1835 In T. 3 R. 4w, the first entry was made in 1814 last in 1816

This comprises all the Townships and fractional Townships in Switzerland County in the Cincinnati land district.

In the Jeffersonville District no entries of land in Switzerland County were made until 1812 and the last in 1839.

It will be seen that the early entries of the lands in the county were made in the bottoms along the Ohio river and near thereto.

Robert Cotton, a brother of William Cotton, Charles F. Krutz, father of Wm G. Krutz of Florence and Joseph Noble father of Charles, Lewis and Oliver Noble were appointed constables of Jefferson Township, and William Campbell the grandfather of Wm. & Charles Protsman and Caleb Mounts, were recommended to the governor as proper persons for the office of Justice of the peace for Posey Township, and George Craig father of Mrs. Tabitha O. Kyle for Justice of the peace for Jefferson Township.

Elisha Golay who had been appointed Surveyor declined to accept and John Gilliland was recommended by the Court to the Governor as a suitable person to be appointed Surveyor.

Among the early settlers in the upper end of the county were James McClure who was Judge of the courts, Ezekiel and Joshua Petty, Peter Lostutter, Lewis Jones, George and Elisha Wade, Caleb Mounts, Williams Pierson, Benjamin and Robert Drake, the Vandoren family, John Kilgore William Campbell, Robert Gullion, Amos A. Brown, John Neal, Charles Campbell, Job and James Treusdel, William Johnson, William White, the Wallicks, McCrearys, and McCorc1es.

The first taverns kept in Vevay were kept by Thomas Armstrong, Philo Averil, William Cooper, Samuel Fallis, Jonas Baldwin, David McCormick, William T. Huff and others not necessary to mention. Thomas Armstrong and William T. Huff in fact kept the only taverns in the town with the view of accommodating travelers.

Thomas Armstrong at first kept his tavern in a two story hewed log house on the lot where John F. Doans residence stands. Afterwards he built the house in which John L. Thiebaud resides and kept tavern there for many years.

William T. Huff built a brick house at the corner of Ferry and Main Street where the LeClerc house stands and kept his tavern there for many years.

Richard Dumont the father of John J. Dumont of Indianapolis and C. T. Dumont of Cincinnati Ohio was to be married to Matilda Philips and was speaking about going to Madison for his license. John Francis Dufour told him if he would wait a week or ten days he could get a License at Vevay as he expected his commission as clerk within that time. Mr. Dumont told him he would see his intended and if she would consent to postpone their marriage until that time and if she would he would be very glad to do so. Their marriage was postponed, and on the 6th day of October 1814 the Licence was granted, being the first marriage license granted after the organization of the County - and they were married on the same day by William Cotton associate Judge.

There appears on the Marriage Record of that early day the following certificate of a marriage
"This is to certify that the marriage of Hugh McCreary and Rebecca White being advertised according to law, was solemnized by me one of the Justices of the peace of Switzerland County on the 3rd November 1814, Witness my hand and seal the 8th Novr 1814"
ROBT. M. TROTTER J. P. (Seal)"

Among the early settlers in the lower end of the county were George Craig, Stuman Craig, Joshua Cain, Robert McKay, James McKay, Abisha McKay and George Ash.

In 1805 or 1806 the residents in that part of the county built a block house in which to shelter the women and children, on an alarm being given of the approach of Indians, George Craig himself resided on the opposite side of the river but had occasion to come to this side, and had frequently sheltered in this block house - he finally purchased a large tract of land on which he located cleared the land and planted a large orchard. He was asked why he planted such a large orchard, his reply was "That my grand children may have plenty of apples to eat."

As early as the fall of 1817 a sabbath school was commenced in Vevay by Mrs. Clarkson wife of Abner Clarkson and Miss Hester Welsh, (daughter of Dr. & Rev. James Welsh a Presbyterian minister) in the court house and was continued during the summer for several years Samuel Menil some two years after it was commenced gave it his support and he became the superintendant.

On the west side of Pleasant Township and in the South west corner of the Township, a number of Scotch families settled as early as 1817 1818 and 1820 and their numbers were increased from time to time by accessions until quite a large settlement of these industrious and worthy people was made and extends over into Jefferson county. Among the number now recollected were the four Brothers, William, James, John and Samuel Culbertson the Mortons, Glenns, Makensies, Scotts and many others whose names are not recollected.

About the same period a number of Scotch families commenced a settlement on Long Run, among whom were Niel McCallum, Duncan McCallum, John McCallum, Donald Cowan, the Malcomsons, John Anderson and perhaps one or two other families not now recollected. They were what are known as "Seven [th] day Baptists". It was rather novel to the citizens, to travel up "Long Run" on a Saturday and see none of those people stirring about - and passing on Sunday to see every one able to do any work out in the clearing chopping piling and burning brush and rolling logs.

Philip and John Romeril settled on Long Run above these Scotch families. During the absence of the family, except a sister, some demon in human shape passing by, with deadly aim shot the sister dead. When the other members of the family returned they found her lying cold, in death. Suspicion was fixed on a person named Long but no proof of his guilt could be brought against him and he was set at Liberty.

The Detraz family came to Vevay in 1816 or 1817. They had not been here long, until the old gentleman while bathing in the river was drowned. His body was found at Madison, an inquest was held by Abner Clarkson (now of Vevay) who being Justice of the peace acted as coroner. The remains were interred at Madison . The family left consisted of his widow (second wife) three sons by a former marriage, John, Benjamin and Francis and two sons by the last marriage Abraham and Louis, the latter now residing on the land that had been entered as a home for the father and his wife and two younger sons. About this period Frederick L. Grisard (father of the Frederick L. Grisard of our day), and his brother in law Belrichard came to Vevay settled below Indian Creek-on the land owned by Leclerc and part by William Tilly where Mr. Grisard carried on his occupation of Black smith for some years when he sold his land and came to Vevay and bought lots where R. F. Grisard now resides. Mr. Belrichard was a shoe maker, carried on the business for a few years when he removed to Louisville, died and left a son and daughter.

About this period a Swiss named James Bolens came to Vevay bringing with him George Tandy and two or three other young men who were not able to pay their passage, Bolens paying their passage--which they repaid with interest in a year or two. The Pernet family came about the same time and settled at Mount Sterling where they remained some time. The old gentleman became deranged and hanged himself. His son John sold out and went to Covington. David Emanuel his other son remained in Mount Sterling many years kept a house of entertainment where Ralph Cotton resides - removed to Bethlehem in Clark County where he died.

Frederick L. Grisard one of our successful mechanics came to the United States with his father and mother in 1818 when about 10 years of age. In 1824 he placed himself under the instruction of a Mr. Osserlee of Cincinnati to learn the profession of Blacksmith. In 1827 he commenced business in Vevay with success, and gained the reputation of being the best workman of the kind for many miles round about Vevay.

Joseph Malin came to Vevay in 1816 and commenced the saddling business which he continued to carryon until about 1833 or 1834. When he first came to Vevay he opened his shop in one room of the building now occupied by Robert A Knox.

Abner Clarkson came to Vevay in the fall of 1817 opened a store and commenced selling goods in one room of the house in which Joseph Malin had his saddlers shop.

In 1816 or thereabout a man by the name of Smith came to the county-settled near the place now known as Quercus Grove, where he commenced taking the Oak bark grinding it, and packing it into hogsheads or casks. The bark thus prepared he shipped on flatboats to New Orleans and thence to England, for coloring cloths and yarns. He succeeded in getting a quantity sufficient to load one or two flatboats which he sent to New Orleans in charge of Edward Patton, as super cargo. Whether Patton went with these cargoes to England or not is not known to the writer. This man Smith had the cognomen of "Rarified Smith" applied to him, on account perhaps of some theory advanced by him of using rarified air for the purpose of propelling machinery instead of steam. It is thought Smith left the "Bark Works" about 1821 or 1822 for he had left before Martin R. Green came there in 1823.

In 1818 or 1819 Robert Bonner and Francis Bonner, the latter the grandfather of the Francis Bonner, now living in Vevay, and in the grocery business with ----- Cain, built an ox saw mill in the river bottom on what are now lots No. 238 and 239 in J. F. Dufour's addition to Vevay on Ferry Streets. The propelling power of the mill was a large tread wheel upon which from 6 to 8 oxen were placed, to cause it to run with sufficient force to do any execution. The mill never did much in sawing - but was financially the cause of the owners failure.

About the same time or perhaps a year later, Judge James Lee, the father of Mrs. Jane Stevens of Madison Indiana the widow of Stephen C. Stevens, built an ox grist mill on the lot now owned by Dr. Jacob W. Thompson - this mill was designed to manufacture all the wheat raised in this part of the county but proved a failure in every respect. The wheel was an enormous tread wheel, to be propelled by placing on it six or Eight heavy oxen - it never did anything in the manufacture of flour, but proved an unprofitable investment for the proprietor and an utter failure to the realization of the expectations of Judge Lee.

Some years after Joshua Smithson who was carrying on the Cabinet making business erected a carding machine on the lots where John Gills grist mill now stands and continued Carding for some time by horse power and finally he erected a Cotton Gin on a small scale and on which for some years he ginned all the cotton raised about in the different neighborhoods in this county and from the opposite side of the Ohio river, which amounted to several hundred pounds yearly. The writer has seen cotton growing on the farm of Jean Daniel Morerod just below Vevay and in fact nearly all the farms in "Switzerland" as the settlement below Vevay was termed. No doubt the counterpane made of cotton grown in this county "in early times" and in the possession of Mrs. Constant Golay, who is a daughter of Jean Daniel Morerod, mentioned in the Revielle of the 25th of March 1876, was made of Cotton raised on the farm of her father and ginned at Joshua Smithsons Gin. Mr. Smithson afterwards had an engine attached to his mill and run it for some years with but one accident occurring - the head of the boiler was one day blown out causing great consternation in the neighborhood for a time but fortunately no one was injured although many were much frightened. Mr. Smithson eventually sold out to William C. Keen.

The engine which Mr. Smithson put into this mill was built by Frederick L. Grisard, who was carrying on the blacksmith business and Lewis Golay, who had served an apprenticeship at engine building with a person in Cincinnati Ohio by the name of Tift. All the wrought iron work about it was worked by F. L. Grisard and the polishing and finishing by Lewis Golay and the engine put up and put in running order by Lewis Golay - this was the first Steam engine set up in Vevay, if not in Switzerland County.

In 1815 John Brown father of James Brown Esqr came to the County and settled on the land where James Brown now resides. His dwelling was a two story hewed log house on the opposite side of the road nearly opposite to the brick dwelling now occupied by his son James. He was soon after he came to the County elected a Justice of the peace and served one or two terms of five years each. His son James Brown has served as Justice of the peace in Jefferson Township twenty one years. James Brown has grown up with the county and has seen the forests that stood on the lands in his neighborhood, cleared up and the fields to yield their rich harvests of hay grain and other products which constitute the true wealth of the county. About the same time Peter Harper settled on the farm now owned by Jonathan McMakin, and in a small one story log house on the opposite side of the road from McMakins present residence lived and died and raised his family having cleared up the lands and made them suitable for tilling. His brother William Harper settled on the quarter section immediately north, the same now owned by Huldah Sullivan, and was purchased of William Harper, by Nathan Walden, and deeded by Walden and his wife to Mrs. Sullivan who is a daughter of Nathan Walden. Nathan Walden was one of the early mail carriers in this part of the country. In his youth he was mail carrier and contractor between Lawrenceburgh and Salisbury Indiana. The route was discontinued, but neither Walden, or the Postmasters at the ends of the route being notified of its discontinuance, Walden continued carrying the mail on that route for about two years without receiving any pay from the Government. He informed James Noble, then Senator in Congress from Indiana who resided in Brookville of the affair. Senator Noble assured him he would call at the department for an explanation, which he did and ascertained that the route had been discontinued over two years. The department being made to know to the satisfaction of the P. M. General that neither Walden or the Postmasters at the ends of the route had been notified of its discontinuance, orders were issued for the payment to Walden for the services rendered, which amounted to a considerable amount. With this he secured the quarter Section of land now owned by his son Henry. About 1814 to 1816 he was carrying the mail from Cincinnati O. to Jeffersonville Indiana, during which time the lands were being entered at the land office at Jeffersonville - and many persons sent by him the number of the Section and the Quarter of land they wished to enter and the money to pay into the Land office. For this service he was paid perhaps a couple of dollars by each person for whom he performed such service, which no doubt amounted to many dollars. In later years Mr. Walden was a contractor for carrying the mails on many important routes passing through the county - by which with perseverance energy and economy he amassed a good fortune, which he has distributed to his Sons and Daughters-three sons and three daughters.

In the same year the disease (cholera) made its appearance in Pleasant Township, and many deaths occurred. Dr. Hotchkiss & perhaps his wife (the father and mother of George A. and Luther Hotchkiss) one Banta, a tanner who lived on and & [sic] owned the farm and built the brick house that John S. Olmstead owned at one time and many others whose names are not now recol1ected fell victims to that scourge, and yet there was not a case originated in Vevay, untill within the last few years.

The physicians of Vevay were not blessed with the facilities of a drug store until about the year 1819 when Doctor James Welsh in partnership with his son George W. Welsh commenced the business in the Ell of the Brick building - on the corner of Market and Main Cross Street, where they kept an assortment of the drugs and medicines used in those days, and continued until the death of his son George, when the business was continued by the Doctor and his son Joseph S. Welsh, the business terminating with the death of the Doctor in the year 1826 - this was the first drug Store kept in Vevay - about the year 1827 or 1828 Abner Clarkson commenced the Drug business and continued under his own name and in connection with his son Doctor Samuel W. Clarkson and then with Perret Dufour until about 1852 or 53.

The farmers in and near Vevay until about 1814 had the services of Francis Louis Siebenthal as their black Smith. His shop stood not far from the Brick dwelling on the Norrisez farm below Vevay - he was a good workman and worked at his trade until about 1820 or 1821. The writer has at this time in his possession a two pronged potatoe hook made by him about the year 1811 for John F. Dufour - it was used chiefly to loosen the earth around the grape vines. In 1819 Frederick L. Grisard the father of F. L. Grisard of Vevay came to the neighborhood of Vevay and settled on the lands now owned by Peter LeClerc - and commenced working at Blacksmithing . In 1826 or 1827 he removed to Vevay and he and his son F. L. carried on the business for some time, until the old gentleman’s advanced age compelled him to abandon the work.

Joseph Kern the father of Edward Kern came to Vevay and either carried on a shop in that line of business or brought ready made saddles and harness with him. James Todd the father of Henry Todd, came to Vevay at an early day and engaged in the business which he continued for some years.

George Kessler, commenced the business at an early day, and continued in it with his son Victor Kessler until his death some five or six years since.

At an early day the manufacture of spiritous liquors was carried on in the County on a small scale at several points-about 1817 or 1818 Samuel Mennet commenced distilling on his farm now owned by his Son Francis E. Mennet, with a small copper-still he having a horse mill for the purpose of grinding the grain for distillation, what quantity was made by Mr. Mennet is not known. Another of the early distilleries was near Cottons mill on the farm now owned by Solomon Walden, the date of its erection is not known to the writer-although in 1824 a party of squirril hunters was to meet at "cottons sti1l house" to count their game-not later perhaps than 1820 or 21 one of those small distilleries was erected and operated on the farm now owned by the wife of Hugh H. Lamb near Mount Sterling. John Wilson while he owned the Mill now owned by John Bakes, erected a distillery near the mill on a larger scale than any (save one) that had ever before been erected in the County and that larger one was erected by a firm under the name and Style of Whitemore Barnes and Dufour - the persons composing that firm were Nathan M. Whitemore, Francis Barnes and Daniel Dufour - it was erected on the lot of ground where Charles Grammers Slaughter house now Stands - it was supposed its capacity would by [be] about 20 barrels of whiskey every 24 hours it was run for a short time making a few barrels of whiskey, and was finally abandoned as an unprofitable investment, and all three of the partners were bankrupted in the operation. Daniel Dufour gave a deed to the firm for five acres of land, furnished $1000 in money and in return before the final closing up of the partnership, he received three or four barrels of whiskey.

The Swiss Settlement of Switzerland County Indiana
by Perret Dufour
Published by the Indiana Historical Commission, Indianapolis 1925

The Thiebaud family came to the county about the year 1817, and settled on the farm on which Justin Thiebaud now resides. If ever a family could be said to be industrious the Thiebauds as a family could be so called. The old lady was an extraordinary woman in many respects, she was a loving wife, kind an and indulgent mother, a good neighbor, a valued citizen and a pious Christian - and one whose example if followed by all would lead to prosperity and happiness. There were two sons Charles Thiebaud who lived in Vevay many years and died about 1872 - and Justin who lives below Indian Creek – on the farm on which the parents lived and died. There were five daughters. One married Mr. Bachman of Madison Ind. One married David E. Pernet - one married Benoit Courvoissier and was the mother of Frederick L. Courvoissier late a county treasurer of this county One married Thomas A. Haskell and now lives in Craig Township - one married Ulysses P. Schenck the successful merchant and Produce dealer of Vevay. About this period John James Philip Schenck his wife and son Ulysses P. then a lad of about 10 years old came to the country and settled on a farm on the hill back of the Thiebaud farm. He was a tinner, and as there was no tinner in Vevay Mr. Schenck did all the mending of tin ware and making new, at his home coming to town once or twice each week and taking home with him all the tin ware needing to be mended that he had collected together in Town, and returning it repaired when he next came to town. This he continued to do for some time when he removed to Shippingport, Ky and continued in business there during the constructing of the canal, at which he made a good sum of money with which he purchased the farm on which he resided for many years . His son Ulysses P. commenced business at Louisville and there carried on business until about 1837 when he purchased the lot on which his present business house stands, and has continued in business ever since. His successful career as a merchant and produce dealer is known to most of the farmers of Switzerland County.

The Swiss Settlement of Switzerland County Indiana
by Perret Dufour
Published by the Indiana Historical Commission, Indianapolis 1925

Deb Murray