Sunday, May 18, 2014

MAY 18, 1814

200 years ago today John and Isabella Gray Sapp were preparing to make a trip to the Jeffersonville Federal Land Office to make their final payment on their pioneer homestead on the headwaters of Mill Creek in Washington Township, Washington County, Indiana Territory.  John Sapp was a native of Maryland. He and Isabella were married in Madison County, Ky on January 6, 1791. After the death of his father in 1805, they moved to Clermont County, Ohio which was the 8th oldest county established in the entire Northwest Territory.  This family of 7 soon learned of new land in the Indiana Territory.  They then would have either trekked west in 1811 along Kibbey’s Trace which ran from Cincinnati to Vincennes or have taken a flatboat from Cincinnati to Jeffersonville.  After a few days of temporary encampment near Royse’s Lick, their homestead was selected on the border of the Norman Upland and the Mitchell Plain.  Soon after their settlement, their daughter Mary Katherine married Christopher Purkhiser.  The Sapps were making their living as farmers at the time cholera came to England from India in 1832. When the scourge of cholera came to the Midwest in the summer of 1833, both of them died in this epidemic on July 14, 1833.  They are buried at the Mill Creek Cemetery.

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