History of Beavercreek Township
by Frank B. Zink
(Taken from Robinson’s 1961 Rural Directory)
Beavercreek Township is one of the original four townships in this section of the state. It extended as far north as Lake Erie. It is a beautiful valley, fertile, well timbered, rolling and picturesque. It is noted for its fine farms. The high ridge separating Beaver Creek and Mad River is a particularly fine fruit section.
The Pennsylvania and CH & D Railroads and the Dayton and Xenia Traction ran from west to east across the township. The Dayton and Xenia Turnpike was first built from Dayton to Alpha about 1858 and was later completed to Xenia, this affording the chief means of communication with market between these cities. This was built by a joint stock company and kept up in repair by collections made in the common way at the tollgate. Good roads extended throughout the township.
Beavercreek Township is the cradle of Greene County, for it was the little log cabin built by Benjamin Whiteman, occupied by Peter Borders, a short distance south of the log mill of Owen Davis erected in 1798 on Beavercreek that the first meeting of the associate judges of Greene County met May 10, 1803. It was at this first meeting of the judges that the county was laid out by the order of the court and their boundaries designated.
In Beavercreek was the first mill north of Cincinnati where corn was ground for the settlers. It was called the Alpha Mill from the first letter of the Greek alphabet. The courthouse, mill and two block houses built for defense were near enough together to be inclosed in a stockade should the Indians become troublesome. The old log courthouse was the first licensed tavern in the county. It was located on what is now the A. Z. Heller home a short distance south of Alpha.
William Maxwell, first printer and publisher in the Northwest Territory lived near Trebein and is believed to be buried about a mile southwest of Trebein on a knoll just back of his cabin.
Mr. John Harbine and Mr. Needles laid out the town of Alpha in 1854. When what is now the Pennsylvania railroad was built, Mr. Harbine gave land required and the station was named Harbine. It was a lively manufacturing center with its distillery, flour, cotton, woolen, grist, saw and oil mills, and did a large tobacco, grain, and shipping business to all parts of the country. From the first mill and the first barrel of flour which was marked "Alpha" the name has clung to the place. There are in the town a nice brick church, a school, a post office, coal office, two stores and at upper Alpha a K of P Hall, a blacksmith shop and Beavercreek Township High School built in 1888. The waters of Beaver Creek have turned the wheels of grist mills for more than a century, and the old dam and old covered bridge torn down recently is an attractive place for picnics, fishing and swimming parties, but the block houses, mills, and store houses are no longer to be seen and the valley is peaceful, productive and beautiful.
Trebein formerly known as Pinkneyville, Frost Station and Beaver Station is two miles nearer Xenia. Pinkney Road running from Cincinnati through Bellbrook, through Trebein, through Oldtown and into Xenia was a very busy thoroughfare in the 1800’s, bringing supplies to and from Cincinnati.
Zimmerman about two miles west of Alpha on the Old Dayton and Xenia Pike had a blacksmith shop, grocery, school house and two Dunkard Churches. The railroad station is a quarter of a mile south of Zimmerman and is named Shoups Station.
New Germany in the northwest corner of the township was a settlement of farmers of German extraction. It has two blacksmith shops, two grocery stores, dry goods store, a saloon, a school house and an Old Stage Coach Inn. The main thoroughfare running from Cincinnati through Dayton, Fairfield, Springfield and Columbus, passed through New Germany using the Old Stage Coach Inn as a stopping place. New Germany had a band organized in 1896, which played at political rallies, lawn fetes, picnics and many other places where they were in demand.
The first school in Beavercreek Township was a log structure on the Jacob Coy farm on Shakertown Road. Later Beavercreek had eleven one room elementary schools and two, two room schools and a High School. In 1932 Beavercreek consolidated their schools into one fine school now known as Beavercreek Main.
Beavercreek in the last few years is fast growing from rural to urban life. Many of the rich farm lands have developed into fine residential areas.