Wistar's Farm

Lenape has been known by different names over the past 200+ years.  It grew from a locality named Wister's or Shunk's Ford before a bridge was built over the Brandywine.  The John P. Sager purchased the old mill on the east side of the creek, and the name changed to Sager's Mill.  Eventually, that name changed to Sager's Station when the Wilmington and Northern Railroad built a station on the west side of the creek.

When a post office was established in the village on January 21, 1870, the residents also had their first choices of names turned down.  The Post Office would not accept "Sager's Station" or "Sagerville" since there was a post office in Crawford County called "Saegersville".  So they settled on the name "Lenape" after the Tribe that lived in the Delaware Valley before William Penn's arrival.

The man in the first photo is Truman Lloyd - post master and store keeper at Lenape in the late 1890's.  The Lloyds owned Lenape Farm which was on the hillside along Rt 52 above Lenape Park, west of Creek Road.

Before the Lloyds, Lenape Far was owned by the Entrikens, and before them it was the Wistars.

Wilmer and Elizabeth Worthington named one of their youngest sons possibily in honor of a Philadelphia physician who may have been related through marriage.  This doctor's name was Casper Wistar, MD ( 1761-1818).  Wistar had been a professor at the University of Pennsylvania medical college teaching Chemistry, Anatomy, Mi-Wifery, and Surgery.  When Wistar was 16 years old (1777), he assisted the doctors at the Battle of Germantown, administering aid to Continental soldiers.  Wisteria, a genus of flowering plants including ten species of woody climbing vines native to the Eastern United States was named in his honor by botanist Thomas Nuttal (1786-1859).

In 1802 when Meriwhether Lewis was preparing for his expediation though the western part of the United States, Thomas Jefferson gave to him the names of 2 doctors that he recommended Meriwether talk to prior to setting off for the wilderness.  The first of these 2 physicians was Dr. Benjamin Rush (1746-1814).  Rush has been Surgeon General of the Continental Army and was a signor of the Declaration of Independance.  The other knowledgeable doctor recommended by Jefferson was Philadelphian Dr. Casper Wistar.

Around 1784, a man named Caspar Wistar, Jr. brought his wife Mary and their children to what is not known as Pocopson.  They joined the Birmingham Friends meeting and settled into farming.  Moving into the former John Entriken farm along the west side of the Brandywine Creek. Their daughter Catherine married Abraham Sharpless in 1802. 

Wistar's barn and farm are mentioned in several descriptions of the Battle of the Brandywine.  The masonry farmhouse burned in 1920 and was replaced by a craftsman style bungalow.  That house was torn down when Brandyridge Drive was developed.