History of Bedford, Somerset & Fulton Counties, Pennsylvania: with illustrations and biographical sketches of some of its pioneers and prominent names; Chicago; Waterman, Watkins & Co.; 1884.


"Indian Traders--Ray and Others at Raytown--Driven Away by Indians--Gen. Forbes at Raystown in 1785--A Fort Built--John Fraser and Family--Capt. Ourry Grants a Lot in the Original Town of Bedford--Bedford Manor Surveyed--Prominent Features & Residents in 1761--Description of Fort Bedford--Four Eminent Pioneers--Town Laid Out According to Present Plan in 1766--Made the Seat of Justice in 1771 of a Vast Territory--Its Residents at That Time--Mention of Many Other Early Settlers--The First Postmaster, Etc.--President Washington's Visit in 1794--Incorporated as a Borough--A Letter from President John Adams--The Town in 1883--Corporate History--An Early Celebration--Banking--Manufacturing--Secret Associations--Religious History.

WITH the Indian traders of the colonial period and indeed at a much later date, it was customary, after the site for the establishment of a trading post had been settled, to erect at least two or three log buildings for the accommodations of themselves, their goods and their servants or retainers.  One of these--the trading-house proper--was especially constructed (quite frequently of hewn timbers, and loop-holed) with the view of securing as safely as possible the stock in store, besides affording a place of refuge and defense in case of sudden attack.  The traders, usually, were widely separated one from another, and in course of time, their posts became known among themselves, the white hunters and trappers, and the Indians, as towns.  Hence the names of Ray's Town, Frank's Town, John's Town, Hanna's Town, Beeson's Town, etc., terms which appear so frequently in colonial history.
It is traditionary and quite evident, too, that about the year 1750, an Indian trader named Ray established himself on or near the site of the present town of Bedford, and erected three log buildings, but how long he remained, or what became of him, tradition saith not.  However, the locality was known for a number of years as Ray's Town, and the stream (Ray's Town branch of the Juniata), on which, it is presumed, Ray's trading-post was built, still perpetuates his name.
After Ray, or perhaps with him, came one Garrett Pendergrass, Sr., who, by consent of the chiefs of the Six Nations (see general chapter entitled, "The White Men as Settlers") resided here, made some improvements, probably did a thriving trade with the Indians, an claimed about three hundred acres of land, which included the "Three Springs" as well as land on the left bank of the Raystown Branch.  But according to the statement set forth in the Indian document referred to, he, also, removed from this locality soon after the beginning of the French and Indian war, and sought personal safety at a point far to the eastward.
As shown by the following memorial, William Fredregill was another adventurous spirit, and one of the very first to locate on the site of Bedford:

To the Honourable the Commissioners of Property of the Province of Pennsylvania:

The Memorial of JOhn Ormsby of the Town of Bedford in the County of Bedford in the Province of Pennsylvania Humbly Sheweth--
That a certain William Fredregill in the year of our Lord 1755 in Consequence of the Encouragement given to people to settle on the vacant lands on the Western Frontiers of the said Province did settle on a certain Tract of Land near Raystown now called Bedford then vacant which Tract of Land the said Fredregill occupied, built a dwelling House thereon, and made several other Improvements and continued in possession untill he was driven off by the Indians in 1757, and his House and other Buildings were by them burnt and destroyed.  That some years after the said Tract of Land and Improvements were included in the Survey of a Manor laid out for the Honourable the Proprietaries.
That your memorialist having purchased the said Fredregill's Right and Title in and to the said Tract of Land for the Consideration of one hundred pounds current money of this province as may appear by a certain Instrument of writing of Bargain and Sale bearing date the twenty second Day of December 1764 and made several Considerable Improvements on the same at a very great Expence, did in the year 1766 apply to the Honourable proprietaries Land Office in Philadelphia to have the said Land confirmed to him but at that Time could only obtain a Warrant to have the Land Surveyed with a Clause 'On condition that he shall pay such purchase money as the Commissioners of property shall agree upon with the Memorialist.'
That the memorialist humbly hopes the Honourable Commissioners considering the true State of his case will not charge him with more purchase money than is usually paid by Settlers on vacant Land with the usual Quit Rent and Interest from the Date of the original Settlement in 1755, as the Land was actually settled and improve, according to the Custom of Settlers, long before the laying out of the said Manor, and considering that it has been improved at great 
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