Nestled at the
base of the Wellsville Mountain, a topographic curiosity because of
its narrow base and unusual height, lies Wellsville - Cache
County's oldest permanent settlement. It occupies the southwest
corner of Cache Valley.
On 15 September
1856, the families of Peter, John, and William H. Maughan, Zial Riggs,
and Francis W. Gunnell, and two single men, George W. Bryan and O.D.
Thompson, entered Cache
Valley. There were twenty-five in the group, the oldest being forty-five
and the youngest six weeks. They drove to a stream where they made their
encampment; they called their settlement Maughan's Fort. Wagon boxes
were taken off, and the women prepared homes in them. The men explored
the valley and began to cut and stack the meadow hay for their livestock.
Eleven days after
their arrival, snow blanketed the ground to the depth of a man's ankle.
During this storm, Mary Ann Weston Maughan gave birth to a baby daughter,
Elizabeth, the first white child born to permanent settlers in Cache
Valley. An abundance of water coupled with its favorable location helped
the settlement flourish. There was soon a grist mill, saw mill, brickyard,
dairies, co-op, tannery, granaries, ice house, slaughter house, and
lush crops growing in the fertile soil.