Clarksburg Exponent-Telegram
Thursday, December 4, 2003 

Early settlers of the Isaac's Creek area
by Bob Stealey


Some time ago, Jean Post Rapking of Good Hope lent to the newsroom a copy of her book, "Good Hope History," which she had published by Book Masters of Mansfield, Ohio, and was copyrighted in 2002.

Mrs. Rapking resides in the Isaac's Creek community, just east of Good Hope. In a chapter of her book about Isaac's Creek, she explained that it was named for Isaac Washburn. He and Milley (Amelia) Washburn owned much of the land on Isaac's Creek in the late 18th century, she said.

"George P(f)ost came from the South Branch of the Potomac with three brothers," she wrote. "George Post was born in Germany, but when still a baby came to America with his parents."

George was married in May 1792 to Elizabeth Peterson, and in 1799 "George Post bought 120 acres from the Washburns for 120 pounds current money of Virginia."

It was nine years later that George bought some more land from the Washburns, as did his brother, Martin Post, who was married to Sarah Peterson, a sister of George's wife.

Martin, in 1829, sold his land on Isaac's Creek to George Post Jr. and relocated to Hacker's Creek. 

"George and his sons bought more acreage through the years," Mrs. Rapking noted. "Family tradition reports that the third brother, William, journeyed on toward the Ohio River and was not heard from again."

The McConkeys, the Burnsides, the Sommervilles and the Yerkeys were other early families that settled on Isaac's Creek, the author said. 

The house where Roscoe and Olga Washburn later resided was likely built by some of the Washburns, she said.

"It was an old house in the 1880s," wrote Mrs. Rapking. "Several families of blacksmiths lived there for a few years: David 'Davy' Scott (first place he lived when he came to Good Hope); the Smith family, and Daniel 'Dan' Starkey."

She said George Washburn acquired property and soon afterward built a small house at the forks of Isaac's Creek and the county road (later U.S. 19) for the Starkeys. Dan Starkey had his blacksmith shop on the edge of the property, facing the Isaac's Creek Road.

Clarkburg Exponent-Telegram
Sunday, December 7, 2003 
More about homes in Isaac's Creek community

by Bob Stealey


As promised, today Bob'n'Along will resume with a few brief details about some of the homes along Isaac's Creek, just east of the community of Good Hope in southern Harrison County, as related by author Jean Post Rapking in her book, "Good Hope History."

Exactly 100 years ago, when Rosco and Olga Washburn were married, they moved into the old Washburn house. After snow blew under the door, Rosco's father, George, vowed they would not have another baby born in the house. (They already had a daughter, Pearle.)

"So they moved into the back of the house and old cellar house, and tore down the front part of the house," Rapking wrote. "They graded the front and built a four-room house, which was later enlarged. So George Washburn built the house for them and their son, George, was born in January 1909. They later had a daughter, Alma (Law)."

Rapking continued that the Post property abutted the Washburns'.

"It was surveyed," she wrote, "so it went in a straight line from Raccoon, across the road and up the hillside to almost the top of the hill. Each family kept up one-half of the fence throughout the years."

A three-story log house was built, where Jacob Post, George's son, lived with his family. Then Jacob's son, Jacob P. Post, and wife, Frances, and their family moved from the smaller log house into the large house.

C.W. Post, father of the author, was born in the big log house in 1880. It wasn't until 92 years later, in 1972, that Dee E. and Patricia Rapking Davis razed the big log house, as it was deteriorating. A new home was built on the site. The house was sold in 1985 when Patty moved to Clarksburg.

Going back in time again, in 1892, Jacob P. Post built a new house to the east of the log house, and trees of oak and poplar were cut from the woods on the hillside. 

"A sawmill was installed on Isaac's Creek," the author continued, "and a little land was bought from the Washburns, so the water could be backed up by a dam at the upper end of the farm. Many years later, Ross Washburn bought back the land so there would be a straight line on the western end of their two properties."

She pointed out that the family still has an old scroll saw they believe was used to make the gingerbread (ornamental work) around the porches and under the eaves of the house. In 1979, the house was bought by Edward and Marjorie Rapking, who had five children -- Lynn, Lezlie, John Edward, Jennifer and Marjorie Joanne (Mardie Jo).

Author Rapking said they covered the weatherboarding with insulation and vinyl siding in 1986. She added that Edward Rapking is a direct descendant of the Posts.

George W. and Harriet (Sinnett) Washburn built a small house in the mid-1870s, and two decades later, George built a new two-story house on the same site, the writer stated in the book. After a few years, George moved to Good Hope, and later the new house was destroyed by fire -- with a loom, spinning wheel and other valuables inside.

Finally, Rapking said up Isaac's Creek on the Post farm was School No. 7, which was called the Post School and was most likely built soon after the Civil War ended. Today, it's the site of the Post School Meadow development of at least 15 homes.

My thanks to Jean Post Rapking for the loan of her fine book for purposes of recalling a bit of history for you.