Alexander Frazier (1717-1758), an Irish Quaker colonist of Chester County, was the first proprietor of Lisburn. At the age of 18, he requested a warrant of survey from William Penn’s heirs. Four years later in 1739, the purchase was finalized at a cost of 31 pounds, equivalent $46.50 in today’s US currency.
By Virtue of a warrant from the Honrable Propriety dated the first Day of November anno Dom 1735. There is survey’d unto Alexer Frazier Two hundred acres of Land with allowance of 6 p-Cent in Lancaster County on the west side – Susquehannah River; and Begins at a Hickery by Yellow Breeches Creek Thence. South Tenn Degrees Westerly Two hundred & Sixty-p to a hick-by the sd Creek Then Traversing Down the Severall Courses of the sd Creek; about five hund-and seventy pches to the place of Beginning.
Surveyd Novr 15th/1735 p-Zach Butcher DptSurvey record for Alexander Frazier’s plot in Lisburn, PA
The two-hundred-acre plot covers the majority of Lisburn. If the left boundary of his property followed Lisburn Road, it would be over 200 acres, but I theorize that there was a slight miscalculation in the survey. It was common for roads to be built along property boundaries. If my theory is accurate, his property ranged from south near the Lisburn Road bridge, up north along the main Lisburn Road towards Liberty Forge, as well as all land inside the crook of the Yellow Breeches (see below).
This was one of many properties owned by Alexander Frazier. In fact, he had another 200-acre plot of land on the Yellow Breeches by Dogwood Run near Boiling Springs.
At the time of his warrant request for the various plots of land, most undeveloped land in Pennsylvania was lumped into either Lancaster or Bucks County (see third drawing of the state on the left in the photo below, “4 Counties 1730”). Lisburn was included in records for Lancaster County at that time.
Alexander Frazier, a Quaker, married Phoebe Elliot on October 5, 1743. The Sadsbury Men´s Minutes records their marriage:
“Alexander Fraser and Phoebe Elliot appeared in the meeting and declared their Intention of Marriage with each other, this being the first time. The meeting requests John Day and Nathan Hufey to inquire his clearness from any other and make report to next meeting. The young man is expected to bring a few lines from his parents.
At a monthly meeting held at Sadsbury the 5th of the 10th month 1743, the representatives being called all appeared. Alexander Fraser and Phoebe Elliot declared their continued Intentions of Marriage with each other, it being the second time and nothing appearing to obstruct they are left to their liberty to consummate their marriage to the good order among Friends. John Day and Joseph Bennet are appointed to see that it is so accomplished and make report to the next meeting and bring the marriage certificate to be recorded.”From the Sadsbury Men’s Minutes
The Quaker meeting books record four children, Aaron, Mosses, Ezekiel, Miriam and Abraham. Alexander Frazier’s will included an additional son named Alexander.
Upon the time of Alexander Frazier’s death, the mill likely was built for around 7 or 8 years. Several early historical accounts of Cumberland County’s history note the Lisburn mill as being built in 1751. Alexander Frazier’s will describes an agreement between two of his sons separating a 12 acre tract with the mill to be willed to one son, with his other son inheriting the rest of the 200 acre tract.
“I give to my son James Frazier the other hundred acres in the same place being the East side thereof, to be proffered by him to heirs and assigned forever. Also, I give to my son James 12 acres of land on the same creek, as the same was agreed upon between them and I some time ago. I give to my son Alexander the remainder of the two hundred acres.”Alexander Frazier III’s will
The mill was kept in the family up through about 1765, upon which time it was sold to Ralph Whitsett. Alexander Frazier (his son) helped to lay out plots of Lisburn village in 1785, which will be detailed in another article.
- Swarthmore, Quaker Meeting Records. Friends Historical Library, Swarthmore College, Swarthmore, Pennsylvania.North Carolina Yearly Meeting Minutes.
Hege Friends Historical Library, Guilford College, Greensboro, North Carolina.Indiana Yearly Meeting Minutes.
Earlham College Friends Collection & College Archives, Richmond, Indiana.
Haverford, Quaker Meeting Records. Haverford College, Haverford, Pennsylvania.
- Warrant Applications, 1733-1952. Harrisburg, PA: Pennsylvania State Archives.
Land Warrants. Pennsylvania State Archives, Harrisburg, PA.
- Estate Papers, 1713-1810; Author: Chester County (Pennsylvania). Register of Wills; Probate Place: Chester, Pennsylvania
1 thought on “Alexander Frazier – the Earliest Settler in Lisburn”
Very interesting and well done. Love the graphics. We think the land warrant to the LEFT of your theorized boundary would be to Benjamin Anderson or Andrew Mateer.
We are working to “Save The Farm” on McCormick Rd. and have the friendsofthefarm.org website. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d
like a copy of an 1806 Writ of Partition for Christian Sherrick who had 290 acres at that time.