Wayne County, Ohio

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General Information

Wayne County, Ohio was formed from the Northwest Territory in 1808. From 1808 until 1810, the county had a single township. Killbuck Township was named after the Indian Chief Killbuck. It was attached to Columbiana County and Stark County for administrative purposes until Wayne County was fully organized in March 1812. On April 11, 1812, the county was further divided into four townships: Sugarcreek, Wooster, Mohican, and Prairie. Over the next several years, Wayne County continued to be divided into additional townships. In 1825, Wayne County lost its southern townships to the formation of Holmes County, Ohio. These included part of Salt Creek and Paint, Washington, Prairie, and Ripley Townships. In 1846, Wayne County lost the four western townships to the formation of Ashland County, Ohio. These included Jackson, Perry, Mohican, and Lake.


The county derived its name from Major General Anthony Wayne, a soldier of the American Revolution.

Bodies of water

Some of the major bodies of water in the county include Fox Lake in Baughman Township; Patton's Lake, also in Baughman Township; Doner's Lake in Chippewa; Brown's Lake in Clinton Township; and Manley's Lake, also in Clinton Township.

Two major swamps still exist in the lowlands of Wayne County. These include Newman's Creek Swamp, located in Baughman Township, east of Orrville and Killbuck Swamp, located between Wooster and Shreve.

First Settlements

The first four settlements in the county were:

  • Wooster (1806), first settled by William Larwill, a native of Kent, England.
  • Franklin Township (1808), first settled by James Morgan, a native of Virginia but of Welsh ancestry. In 1806, James Morgan squatted on the Mohican but removed to Franklin Township in 1808.
  • Dalton (1809), first settled by James Goudy, who migrated from Jefferson County, Ohio.
  • East Union Township (1809-1810), first settled by Oliver Day, native of Vermont.

The first inhabitants were from Pennsylvania, Virginia, Maryland, New Jersey and a few from the New England states.

First Facts

  • The first marriage was on April 12, 1809 between Thomas Butler and Rebecca Morgan, both residents of Franklin Township. Robert McClarran, Justice of Peace, performed the marriage.
  • The first marriage recorded in Wayne County was between Daniel Noggle and Lydia Warner, on November 5, 1812. The marriage was solemnized by Esq. Vatchel Metcalf.
  • The arrival of the first passenger train in Wooster was on Tuesday, August 10, 1852.