This township, originally a part of Troy, was separately organized in 1818. The following appears in the records of the county commissioners 11 November 10th, 1819-Resolved, that all that part of the township of Troy included in township No. 5, in the 12th range and the east half of township No. 4, in the 13th range, be a – separate township by the name of Carthage.” And at the same session the inhabitants were directed to meet on a specified day and elect township officers.
The first justice of the peace in Carthage was Milton Buckingham. Joseph Guthrie and Francis Caldwell were also among the earliest. Among the early township trustees were Stephen Buckingham, Joseph Guthrie, Francis Caldwell, Alexander Caldwell, Moses Elliott, and B. B. Lottridge.
Joseph Guthrie built the first grist mill in the township about the year 182o, on a small stream on his farm (near the southeast corner of section six), called after himself, and which still retains the name of Guthrie creek. Since that time there have been two or three small grist mills built on a little stream in the northeast corner of the township formerly called Lizzie run but now called Little Jordan. There have also been several saw mills built in the township in later years, but all have fallen into disuse, and at present there is not a mill in the township worth mentioning. There are nine school districts in Carthage, with nine good country school houses and five churches-two Methodist, one Presbyterian, one United Brethren, and one Christian or Campbellite. The Methodists, as usual, were the pioneers, their society having been organized about the year 1812; the Christian church was organized about 1835, the United Brethren about 8840, and the Presbyterian in 1850.
The early records of the township are lost, and there is no list of its officers prior to 1855. The population in 1820 was 320; in 1830 it was 395; in 1840 it was 734; in 1850 it was 1,087; in 1860 it was 1,827.
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