From Somerset county, Pennsylvania, purchased the Trickle farm in Montgomery township, and moved to the cabin, a twelve by twelve structure, early in the spring of 1815. When he arrived, there was a camp of Indians on the present site of the residence of Jerry Fulkerson, in South Ashland, and two or three camps down the stream about half a mile, all of which contained about fifty Indians, including their squaws and pappooses. They were engaged in hunting and making sugar, and had twenty or thirty ponies, and a number of dogs with them. They left early in the summer. Mr. Markley's family consisted of himself, wife, and seven sons, Jonathan, John, Matthias, Moses, Aaron, Horatio, and Solomon; and two daughters, Matilda and Frances. They left four sons, grown, in Pennsylvania, Philip, Peter, David, and Joseph. They came by Canton and Wooster. They brought seven horse, and a fine covered wagon, and six milk cows. The forests were filled with grass, pea-vines, and shrubbery, upon which the cattle and horses fed.
The first summer, Mr. Markley, wife and two daughters slept in the little cabin, and the boys in and under the covered wagon. Conrad Kline, who had purchased the Carter farm (since owned by John Mason), and John Heller, were kind enough to supply Markley and family with corn-meal at a neighborly price, until they could purchase corn and get it ground at one of the mills. Aaron Markley, the only member of the family in this county, says: "Corn-bread, hominy, a little pork, and a tin of good milk constituted their luxuries the first summer and winter."
The old gentleman, aided by his seven sons, soon prepared a few acres of corn, which they cultivated with care, and which yielded a tolerable crop. Their next care was to put up a hewed log cabin. It was completed and ready to be occupied early in the fall.
When winter began to approach, Mr. Markley, went to Mansfield and purchased three large hogs, for which he paid eighty-four dollars and fifty cents. This constituted the winter meat for the family. Jonathan and Horatio took five horses with pack-saddles, and following the Indian paths proceeded to Owl creek, the "Egypt" of northern Ohio, for corn. They purchased five loads of shelled corn, and went to Shrimplin's mill to get it ground; but the mill having given out, they brought it home, and it was crushed in the hominy block by pounding. After this process, it was sifted, and the coarse fragments being separated, were converted into hominy, and the balance into corn bread. Thus the winter of 1816 passed with the Markleys.
The Markley family soon became famous for their uncommon size and strength. The old gentleman weighed two hundred and sixty pounds, the old lady two hundred and forty, and the boys, when grown, averaged about two hundred and fifty, while Aaron, the runt of the family, weighs two hundred and thirty. The boys, with the exception of Aaron, averaged about six feet three inches in height, Aaron being about five feet seven. It is asserted by the early settlers that David, the third son, could lift by the chimes a barrel of sugar water, and drink from the bunghole. It is rare that such a family of giants is found in a new country. No one had the temerity to contend with David. Samuel, Thomas, and Solomon Urie, all six feet high, and very stout, sometimes had a little tilt with the Markleys, but rarely won a laurel.
Aaron Markley now (1880) resides on the old homestead, is seventy-nine years of age, and is the only member of the family in this county.
Joseph Markley, sr., died in 1831, aged sixty years, and his wife soon followed him to the tomb. Most of his sons went west, where several of them have risen to posts of honor.