Caln Township originally included the territory
embraced in Caln, East Caln, West Caln, East Brandywine, West Brandywine, a
part of Valley twp, the borough of Downingtown , and that part of
Coatesville lying east of the west branch of Brandywine. It was named
from the town of Calne in Wiltshire, England, from which some of the early
settlers came. In 1702 and about that time surveys were made, extending
from the Welsh tract on the east to the west branch of the Brandywine on the
west, mostly confined to the valley. These surveys were afterwards
extended northward and northwesterly.
Joseph Cloud, Richard Cloud
and George Marshall all of Caln were indicted for an assault on Joseph
Hickman in his house in Caln on 4-6-1709. In 1714, Peter Taylor was
constable for Caln, which shows an organization at that date.
The inhabitants of East Caln
petitioned for a determination of their boundaries in May of 1739, and in
1744, the boundaries were set for West Caln.
East Caln was reduced in size
in 1790 by the erection of Brandywine Township which was taken from its northern
part in that year. It was again reduced in size in the formation of
Valley Township on the west in 1853. In 1859 it was still further reduced by
the incorporation of the borough of Downingtown. In 1868 it was again
divided, the part lying east of the east branch of the Brandywine retaining
the name of East Caln, and the remainder with the part of Valley Township lying
east of the borough of Coatesville, taking the original name of Caln.
West Caln was slightly reduced in size in 1853, in the erection of valley Township
on the SE. From 1790 to 1853 East Caln was a long, narrow township, extending
from the west branch of the Brandywine to the western line of West Whiteland,
a distance of over 9 miles. The greater part of the present townships of Caln
and East Caln lie in the valley and contain beautiful farmlands , while
West Caln is more hilly.
Among the early settlers and
owners of land in East Caln were the names of Baldwin, Cloud, Moore, Parker,
Taylor, and Vernon; in Caln, the names of Aston, Hung, Lewis, Miller, Pim,
Parke, Roman, Coates, Bizallion, Musgrove and Mendenhall; in West Caln, the
names of Sharpless, Swayne, Sinkler, Way, White, Weaver and Dawson.
Peter Bizallion was a French trader among the Indians for some time, but
finally settled here.