458 Meylert St Laporte PA 18626
TOURING SULLIVAN COUNTY’S MUSEUM
. . . while dusting
Downtown Shunk, 1909
An interesting background is drawn from an April 2000 obituary for Francis Shunk Brown the 3rd:
“[Age] 81, of Wyndmoor, formerly of Chestnut Hill, died March 8, 2000.
“His great-great-grandfather, Francis R. Shunk, who was governor of Pennsylvania in the 1840’s, is the man for whom Shunk, Fox Township, in Sullivan County is named. (Prior to being named Shunk, the village was known as Fox Center.)
“His grandfather, Francis Shunk Brown, Sr., served as Attorney General of Pennsylvania; and his father, Francis Shunk Brown, Jr., was a Philadelphia Common Pleas Court judge for 40 years.
“Francis, [the] 3rd was a practicing attorney for over 50 years, and was a graduate of Germantown Academy, serving on its board of trustees; and of Lafayette College and University of Pennsylvania Law School.
“During World War II he was an infantry platoon leader in France, Germany and Austria; also saw service in Japan during the Korean War.”
Fox Township, with Shunk within it, was incorporated in 1839 when it was still included in Lycoming County. (Sullivan County was then formed in 1847.) Fox Township had been named for George Fox, founder of the Society of Friends/Quakers, when initial settlement of the area began in very early 1800’s. Starting in 1803-04 Joseph Hoagland built a log grist mill, having acquired a land grant of 100 acres from the proposal for settlement by Phineas Bond. And then another 300 which Mr. Bond offered to anyone willing to put up a grist mill. Many of the early maps show a creek flowing thru Shunk as Hoagland Branch, thus named for Joseph Hoagland.
The information from Mr. Brown’s obituary for his ancestor Francis R. Shunk has just a little more tidbit of information. Mr. Shunk had a proud history from serving in the war of 1812 and afterwards, worked in many government posts. But on Pennsylvania’s Democratic ticket for governor of 1844, he was asked to run in order to fill the vacant candidacy created by the unexpected death of Henry Muhlenberg who was intended to run. Then in 1847 was re-elected. Unfortunately, Mr. Shunk as well had health problems and in July of 1848 he resigned the office only to die days later of tuberculosis.
Many old photographs in the Shunk compiling at the museum will give you insight to its earlier days and some more modern comparisons. To see these and other areas of Sullivan County, call (570)946-5020 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for an appointment (dependant on weather and schedules) or visit the site at www.scpahistory.com
Copyright 2012 Sullivan County PA Historical Society and Museum. All rights reserved.
The Sullivan County PA Historical Society and Museum is a registered 501(c)(3).