I though you might be interested in this. I have a book, "Goodhue County, Minnesota, Past and Present," by an old Settler. Published in 1893, Red Wing Printing Co., Red Wing, Minn.
pages 250-253 about Belle Creek say:
"This township is numbered 111 north, range 16 west, and is situated nearly in the center of the county. The stream called Belle creek flows through the western side, affording fair water power, and is bordered by fine hay meadows, and occasionally ledges of lime stone. In the vicinity of the creek are scattering groves of oak, white birch, and poplar, but a large portion of the town is rich prairie land.
A.G. Kemp and Chas. Roos, natives of Sweden, made a settlement here in the fall of 1853, but soon after moved across the line into the town of Vasa.
In July, 1854, Walter Doyle with five sons and one daughter, came and settled on sections four and five. James O'Neal and family came at the same time. In the same month Benoni Hill and family also settled in this township. In October following, Rev. S.P. Chandler made a claim here, but did not move with his family to take possession until the spring of 1855. During the spring and summer of 1855 a large number of families settled here.
The first white child born in Belle Creek was May Cook in August, 1855, daughter of Jacob Cook. The second was John Cavanaugh in November, 1855, the son of Patrick Cavanaugh.
The first death was that of Dennis Cavanaugh. In the forepart of the winter of 1855-6, he started to go on foot over to his brother's, a distance of about two and a half miles. Early in the evening a terrible storm came up, he lost his way, and was frozen to death near the place now called Hader, being three miles from his home and in the opposite direction from the one he should have kept in order to reach his brother's house. His body was not found until the snow went off in the spring.
Lewis White and Emeline Hill were the first couple joined in marriage. This event occurred in 1856. Rev. S.P. Chandler preformed the ceremony.
The first school was taught by Alvin Herbert in the winter of 1855-6, in the basement of the home of Mr. Kirkpatrick.
Wheat was raised by Walter Doyle and others in 1856, a fair yield, and was threshed by hand with flails. They carried it to Mazeppa mill to be ground. There has been raised in the town, as high as fifty-six bushels per acre of wheat, threshers measure. This was on the farm of John Lawson. Michael Doyle raised forty-two bushels to the acre (of wheat) on eight acres in the year 1860, and Richard Doyle threshed thirty-five bushels to the acre from twenty-six acres the same year.
Belle Creek furnished forty-two volunteer soldiers for the war of 1861-5, and paid bounties of $300 each to fourteen others. Mr. Walter Doyle sent sons to the front during the war, viz: H.M.Doyle, Michael Doyle, Walter W. Doyle, John J. Doyle; and Richard Doyle, the remaining son, furnished a substitute. Is there another family in the county that can furnish such a record?
The old stage route from St. Paul to Dubuque passed through this town and the stages used to stop at Mr. Doyle's log cabin for the night. In the winter of 1854-5 there was no house in a southern direction on the road from this cabin to Oronoco, a distance of twenty-five miles. Some of the prominent men of the then territory of Minnesota, enjoyed the hospitality of Mr. Doyle, among whom were Gov. Ramsey, Gen. Sibley, J.C. Burbank, the pioneer expressman, and others. He had the privilege of entertaining twenty-six of the principal men and chiefs of the Chippewa tribe with "Hole in the Day," their head chief, who were on their way to visit the great father at Washington.
The Catholic church was commenced in 1865 and its cost was over $3,000. For some years this was called a mission parish, but for the last twelve years there has been a resident pastor.
The Episcopal church was built in 1873 at a cost of $1,600, mainly through the patient exertions of Rev. S. P. Chandler, who was pastor of that parish until his death in 1888.
The Catholic congregation in this town is the most numerous, and the present year they have built a new church of larger dimensions for the accommodation of thier increasing attendance on publis worship."
Hope you enjoy this, many Irish names mentioned!
Barb (Frettem) Tesluk