Doylestown and Chippewa Township offer history and outdoor fun

Doylestown's water tower is framed by an American flag.

Chippewa Township and Doylestown Village have both sassy and nice in their history.

The area was settled by the peaceful, godly Chidester family, then gave way to a lawless Wild West after coal was discovered in the 19th century that brought in miners, sewer men, tavern owners, and brothels.

Today it’s a quaint bedroom community proud of its history with a handful of tame activities – though ghost hunters often drive through at night looking for the famous ghosts, haunted trains, crying babies, and the headless horse of Rogues’ Hollow.


A woman leads her dog down Portage Street in Doylestown.

State Route 585 runs through these communities in the northwest corner of Wayne County. Frontier communities are the townships of Rittman, Marshallville and Milton, Green and Baughman.


Doylestown was founded and named after William Doyle, an early settler, who built a log cabin in 1827 that also served as the town’s home and first tavern. The village was incorporated in 1867.

Chippewa Township is named after the Chippewa Indian tribe who inhabited the area. However, the Chippewas themselves called the area Nibrara, which means “beautiful valley”.

Famous former residents include serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer, who lived in Doylestown when his brother David was born. Singer George Morgan moved to Doylestown to marry a local woman and was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame with Tammy Wynette and Elvis Presley in 1998. Cowboy star Roy Rogers is also said to have visited his grandmother, who lived in the still-preserved Rogers House on Galehouse Road.

The Wayne County Historical Society has identified 49 historic buildings here, including landmarks, pioneer homes, and century homes.

sightseeing features

Please note: As the region recovers from the COVID-9 pandemic, many companies are changing their opening hours. Note that the information in this list is subject to change.

Bent Ladder Winery offers outdoor seating with a view of Doylestown.

• Rogues’ Hollow is part of the township famous for its wild tavernas, brothels and brawls – which have grown into modern day haunted stories that attract ghost hunters from across the region. But you can also enjoy it for its simple story. At 17500 Galehouse Road, visit the old 19th century Chidester Mill. There’s a museum inside that’s only open on Sundays from 2pm to 4pm, but the mill is worth scenic outside photos every day of the week. In addition, there are special events throughout the year.

• Adjacent to the old mill in Rogues’ Hollow is the Chippewa Township Preserve Pavilion, which is open daily for picnicking and exploring the easy hiking trails in the hollow.

Chippewa nature reserve

• From August 6-7, the annual Rogues’ Hollow Festival will take place with a parade, exhibitors, live music, vintage cars and a 3-mile run. There will also be fireworks on Saturday evening (rainy date Sunday) that can be seen from all over downtown Doylestown and Memorial Park, 280 Gates St.

• Silver Run Vineyard & Winery, 376 Eastern Road, Doylestown. Open Thursday and Friday from 5pm to 10pm and Sunday from 1pm to 10pm

• Rittman Orchards and Farm Market., 13548 Mount Eaton Road, offers fresh fruit and produce, and you can pick your own berries and apples during the season. The opening times are Tuesday to Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Also on the property is Bent Ladder, a cider and wine tasting room with indoor and outdoor seating overlooking the valley.

A worker fills peaches at Rittman Orchards in Doylestown.Guests enjoy the view as they sample wines at the Bent Ladder in Doylestown on July 17th.

• The annual Summer Concert Series, held at 24 S. Portage St. in Doylestown, had a reduced schedule this year due to funding issues related to the pandemic. The last concert of the season will take place on July 30th at 7pm. The Chardon Polka Band will perform with the Cheezylicious Food Truck available. Streets are closed for the concert. Bring your own chairs.

• Chippewa Golf Club, 12147 Shank Road, is an 18-hole public golf course open from sunrise to sunset. Designed and built by Harrison and Garbin in 1962, the course features rolling terrain, rolling greens and the infamous “Bermuda Triangle”. There is an updated driving range and an outdoor pavilion for up to 200 people.

• Cranston’s Pub, 13108 Portage St. in the township, is known for its pizza and Scottish and German beers. Limited summer opening times, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesday to Saturday.

• Shelly’s Uptown Grill, 68 N. Portage St. in Doylestown, is a sports restaurant. Open daily for lunch and dinner, adding early breakfast times on Friday and Saturday. Outdoor dining is added on Summer Concert Series nights.

• A weekly farmers market is held every Saturday through September 11th from 8-11am at Memorial Park Lions Pavilion, 280 Gates St.

• Doylestown’s annual village-wide yard sale takes place on Saturday, September 18th.

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A woman shops at Rittman Orchards and Farm Market in Doylestown.

Via Doylestown and Chippewa Township

Founded: Doylestown 1827; Chippewa parish 1815

Population: Doylestown 3,067; Chippewa parish 10.138

School and mascot: Chippewa Local School District, the Chipps

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