Joshua Came to Philadelphia with his parents before September 4, 1684. About the year 1700, Joshua's father, George, bought land on the south side of Brandywine Creek. In 1709, Joshua went to this wilderness land to establish a homestead. He built a log cabin and developed the land into a farm. This farm was called Evergreen Glade, later Pierce's Park, and in 1906 was called Longwood Gardens. Joshua lived out his life at Evergreen Glade, and passed the farm on to his son Caleb in his will.
Joshua Pierce, in his will dated 8-23-1752, provided for his wife, Rachel, left five shillings to son, George. Sons, Joshua, Joseph, Caleb, and Isaac inherited land. Joseph also got give shillings. Daughters, Mary Cloud and Ann Mendenall, got 40 pounds each. Witnessed by Ann Caldwell and Ann Mercer.
[Colonial and Revolutionary Families of Pennsylvania, p 426]
Joshua Peirce settled in East Marlborough, where he built a brick mansion in 1730, still standing, and in possession of the family until 1906; his children were: Joshua, Joseph, Caleb, and Isaac. Caleb inherited the homestead, and his two sons, Samuel (1766-1838) and Joshua (1766-1851), established the beautiful botanical garden or arboretem, surrounding the house known as Peirce's Park. Another son, Jacob Peirce (1761-1801), made a settlement on another part of the original estate and kept an interesting diary of his busy life. He was succeeded by his daughter Hannah (1797-1876), who married John Cox (1786-1880), and both were leaders in the reform and anti-slavery movements that agitated southern Chester co. in ante-bellum days; Longwood Meeting, the rallying point of these forces, was established on their land, and Whittier, Garrison, Phillips, Lucretia Mott, and a host of other prominent reformers were frequently entertained in the hospitable home of the Peirces, which also became an important station of the "Underground Railroad," and hundreds of slaves were aided to escape by that route to the North.
Poems were addressed to John and Hannah Cox, by both Whittier and bayard Taylor, on the occasion of their Golden Wedding at Longwood in 1873
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