Union district, while not possessing the coal wealth nor the farming opportunities of some of the other districts of the county, has always been a section of central interest due to the fact that the court house has always been here.
The surface of this district is generally best suited to grazing lands rather than cultivation, notwithstanding several fine all-around farms are found here in the valley of Twelve Pole. In the early years ot the county's development, Union marketed great quantities of the best of timber but this industry passed away with the olden days.
The names of the first settlers in this district include the following, who are direct ancestors of many of the present day citizens of this section: Jesse Spurlock and Samuel Ferguson, both of whom built homes in 1802 where the court house now stands; in 1806 David France, who is credited with planting the first apple tree in Twelve Pole Valley, settled in Union; he was followed by Hezekiah Adkins, John Stephenson, Thos. Chandler, Asher Crockett, Reuben and Wm. Adkins; and about the time of the war of 1812 these men found homes within the present boundaries of Union district: Hugh Bowen, Asa Bowen, Daniel Davis, Reuben Booton, Jesse Blankenship, John Thompson, (who, by the way, is said to have made the first liquor in Wayne county), John Newman, Benjamin Drown, Wm. Morris, Chas Bother, Benjamine Garrett, Joshua Stephens, Jerry Lambert, Abraham Stephen, and Burwell Spurlock.
The first marriage in this district was between Jerry Lambert and Polly Ferguson, while the first children born were Nancy Bowen (daughter of Hugh Bowen) and Mary Bloss (daughter of Valentine Bloss).
The first sermon was preached by Rev. Burwell Spurlock in 1816, soon followed by Rev. Goodwin Lycan.
Wayne, the county seat, has always been the largest community in Wayne county. . . . beautiful location, being situated on a hill in the horse-shoe bend of Twelve Pole. The town is 690 feet above the tide water level.
In the early years of its history, Union was a leading factor in developing a school system in the county. And a revival of this old time enthusiasm seems to have been awakening in the past few years. Union district is considering the establishment of a senior high shool, which. . . will be the second first class school in the county.
The future prosperity of Union district probably lies in the educational and farming improvements.
Transcription by June White
Wayne County News