Established in 1874 by the U.S. Postal Service at the request of founders Jacob Reed and his partner Joseph Crooks, Crooksville has continued to thrive for the past 126 years. Located off State Rt. 93 in Perry County, the Village has worked diligently over the years to keep the environment friendly for families and business. Their efforts have been rewarded with the 2001 Governor’s Award for Partnership in the Arts, and Tree City Status since 1996.
Sometime earlier between 1820 and 1825, Jacob Reed, a young and prosperous man from the East struck out looking for a company in which to invest his money and double his fortune. On the way he met his bride, Lydia, and eventually the two of them found the heavily timbered land that is now Crooksville. Mr. Reed negotiated with the federal government for a parcel of land along what we now know as the Moxahala Creek and received a warranty deed signed by President James Monroe. He started his empire with a lumber mill and farm, the sales from which enabled him to purchase more land until he had acquired upward of 300 or 400 acres. In 1856 the railroad passed through the Reed farm on its way between Zanesville and New Lexington. Due to concessions Jacob Reed made to the railroad, a spur was built onto his property for the benefit of the community over which he built a warehouse for his grain and named Reed Station. The local freight train also carried a passenger car and stopped by flag to discharge and receive passengers. During this period, more farms had also cropped up around the Reed properties, most of which had a small kiln for making functional pottery. Because these kilns and the clay for making pottery were normally kept in small, unheated buildings, production could only happen from spring through fall, which spurred the nickname “bluebird potteries”. Firing up in spring when the bluebirds returned from their winter migration, and ending when they’d headed south again. The area grew and gained in population creating the need for building materials, dry goods, churches, schools and a host of other creature comforts. In addition to being rich farmland, the area produced deep veins of clay and coal, creating a thriving pottery and coal mining industry.