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Publishers' Argument.

No volume can scarcely be of greater interest and value than one tracing the early growth, and reciting the early history, of a Commonwealth or a Nation. It need not necessarily be a ponderous tome replete with those hard facts which seem to stand against one's vision like a great wall into which is cut the bare, cold records of accomplishment. It may be crudely told. It may be little and modest, and even to the great world quite unknown. But it should glow with the charm surrounding recitals of the every-day experience of those men whose lives are passed in molding the growth, character, and even destiny, of States or Countries, whose true history is thus brightened in detail and heightened by the fascination of reminiscence.

For these reasons perhaps no work, written by any citizen of the West, ever deserved so wide a reading and preservation, and was yet so little known, as "MY OWN TIMES ", or "REYNOLDS' HISTORY OF ILLINOIS ", by the late Governor John Reynolds, which has been reclaimed from obscurity, and, with considerable correction and revision, is reproduced in the subjoined pages.

Not only did "MY OWN TIMES" possess charming interest from the blunt truthfulness of its author, "Old Ranger", as he was known throughout the West in the earlier political days; from the honest fidelity with which the most trifling incident is related; in the picturesque grouping of personal experiences with profound events; in the fine blending of men, manners, and means that so strikingly predominate in periods of sectional infancy and the swift changes wrought by aggressive civilization; but a more important value obtains in its absolute historical worth.

Governor Reynolds passed nearly half a century in most prominent public life. As a "Ranger" in 1813; as Judge Advocate in 1814; as an Illinois Supreme Court Judge; as a member of the Illinois General Assembly; as Governor of Illinois; as a Representative in Congress for seven years, and never absent from his seat during session; as Illinois Canal Commissioner, and finally, as Speaker of the Illinois House; — and all this from the early part of the present century until beyond its noon; — his strong, aggressive, manly nature and life were most powerful factors in this period of wonderful transition to Illinois and the West.

"MY OWN TIMES" thus became an epitome of those days, of their remarkable measures, of their marvelous changes, and a record of many of their great men.


But brilliant and strong a man as was Governor Reynolds, he knew little of book-making; less, of book-selling. The manuscript of the work was taken to a little "job office" at Bellville, Ill., in 1854-5. It is thought that but four hundred copies were issued. They were printed from a common hand-press, and the typography was a miracle of wretchedness. The result was, "MY OWN TIMES" remained unknown.

One autumn-day in 1855, as Mr. D. B. Cooke, then Chicago's leading bookseller and publisher, was standing in the entrance to his establishment, a dray laden with shoe-boxes was backed against the curbing. Perched upon the load sat a tall, gaunt, odd-looking individual who immediately alighted, strode into the store, and, with considerable profanity, inquired for the proprietor. Making himself known he was informed in strong language that his visitor was no less than Governor Reynolds, and, in still stronger language, that he had written a book. The book would not sell. It must sell. He had boxed up every copy and brought them along.

Mr. Cooke immediately gave his receipt for about three hundred and fifty copies of "MY OWN TIMES", and the emphatic author was driven away upon the trundling dray quite oblivious to the curious crowd his coming had attracted.

On October 19, 1857, two years later, Chicago suffered from its then greatest conflagration. A very large amount of property was destroyed, and the lives of twenty-three firemen and prominent citizens were lost in their efforts to stay the flames. The publication-house referred to was also burned and with it nearly every existing copy of Governor Reynolds' work, but a trifling number having been sold. Chicago's great fire of 1871 nearly completed the work of annihilating the original edition. Copies of the same were not to be found save at such prices as would cause the possibly remaining dozen, to realize a larger total sum than the entire Bellville edition would have brought when issued.

The CHICAGO HISTORICAL SOCIETY, which is an indefatigable searcher after historical treasures and rare works, has not previously possessed a copy; and for such reasons as have been given, "my own times", to which has been added a very full and complete index, has been reproduced, it is hoped, in a much more attractive and lasting form, not only for the purpose of supplying the Chicago Historical Society and its members, but to assist in perpetuating the history of the great Commonwealth of Illinois, and the nap of one whose public life has added no little strength and lustre to her great power and splendor.



An introduction to a new work may be necessary to place it in a proper position before the public, and to effect this object, the writer presents the following:

1st. The motives inducing the author to write this volume.

The leading object of the writer is to record facts and the progress of events, which may do service to the present and future generations. The rise and progress of a great country is, and always will be interesting to an intelligent and enlightened public. The valley of the Mississippi is fast becoming an important and interesting country, and in it the State of Illinois is assuming a very high character. The important facts and public measures that had a tendency to develop the resources of this great State, and to advance its growth and prosperity, will always be interesting and, the writer hopes, servicable to the people.

The author has incorporated in this work sketches of the history of his life. The official stations of the writer have been so long, in so intimately identified with the rise and progress of Illinois, that these sketches seemed to form an humble portion of the history of the country and therefore are presented in the history of his own times.

These sketches may also serve to show the public, by the example of the author, that every individual in the State has it in his power, under the most adverse circumstances, to obtain an education.

2nd. The qualifications for the work.

The main qualification of the writer in presenting this volume to the public is, his long residence in Illinois, and the various public positions held in the State. He has resided in the country since the year 1800, and has been, during all that long period, an attentive observer of public and private events, which he hopes has enabled him to record, with truth and accuracy, the most important facts of his own times.

Another qualification is his calm and quiet retreat from the turmoils


and conflicts of politics, so that the work, he hopes, records the tale history of the times, without prejudice or partiality.

A negative qualification also existed with the author, that he was not employed in any other business or occupation, and the writing of this work afforded him an interesting and agreeable employment.

3d. The spirit of the work.

On all appropriate occasions, arising out of the facts narrated in the work, the author has made short pertinant remarks enforcing respectfully on the public, morality and religion, without which no people can be prosperous and happy. At the same time he has with equal effort urged the propriety to dispell from their breasts the savage and bitter feelings which unfortunately exist at times among the different religious denominations. Also, he has urged on the public the importance of education, without which no people can be great or happy, or can a nation exist as a Republic for any length of time.

The writer of this volume has likewise attempted to draw the attention of the people to the obedience of the laws of the country and to execute them with fidelity on all occasions.

These are a few of the outlines of the spirit of the work; but the work itself must on this subject, as well as on all others, speak for itself.

With this short introduction the writer submits this volume to the public.

THE AUTHOR. ILLINOIS, July 4th, 1855.


Chapter I.

Early Education Forms to a Great Extent the Character. The Place of the Nativity of the Author.

WHOEVER attempts to write the history of his own times, of scenes in which he himself was an actor, should relate the story of his childhood. Such a relation is the key to his history. The circumstances that surrounded him in early years, leave their indelible impress upon his future character. In after life, other forms of society, and other scenes, may give a new direction to his actions, effecting a radical change in his manners, and apparently in his whole being. But, to the intelligent observer of human character, the impressions stamped upon his mind and heart in childhood, may be traced by their influence upon him, to the latest period of his existence.

Who that is acquainted with the early history of Andrew Jackson will fail to discover the germ of his future character in the impressions given to his mind and heart, while he was yet a child, in the rude pine cottage of his widowed mother, on the borders of the Carolinas? She told him, with deep feeling, of the wrongs of her native Ireland, and taught him resistance to oppression, even to the knife. But far better still, she taught him, almost from infancy, to bow his knee in prayer, and to reverence that Unseen Power, whose goodness and love are never trusted in vain. No American need be told how Andrew Jackson fought for his country, or with what childlike confidence in old age he yielded up his spirit to Him who gave it.

The influence of outward circumstances in moulding the character of an entire community, is seen in the early history of New England, and that of the pioneer settlements of the West. The Pilgrims and their immediate descendants occupied a region swarming with hostile savages, and became as skilful hunters and as daring Indian fighters as ever tracked the savage through the forests of Kentucky and Tennessee. The same undiscriminating thirst for vengeance upon the whole Indian race burned in the bosom of the Puritans, which at a later period was so conspicuously exhibited by the backwoodsmen of the West. The slaughter of the "praying Indians" at the Moravian mission of


Gnadenhueten, on the Muskingum, finds its parallel in the butchery of the venerable Catholic priest, Sebastian Rasle, and his Indian converts, at their village on the banks of the Kennebec, in Maine. Even the murder of the women and children of Logan, the story of which is told with eloquence by Jefferson, has its counterpart in the melancholy fate of the captured wife and children of the brave chieftain, Philip of Mount Hope. I congratulate myself, that my humble lot, from the dawn of life to the years of manhood, was cast upon the frontiers of the West, where toil and danger and privation was my inheritance. I was born in Montgomery county, Pennsylvania, on the 26th of February, 1788. My father, Robert Reynolds, and my mother, whose maiden name was Margaret Moore, were natives of Ireland, from which country they emigrated to the United States, landing at Philadelphia, in the year 1785.

Several of the near connections of our family, including my paternal grandfather, and his household, emigrated at the same time, most of whom settled in Tennessee.

My father was an intelligent, strong-minded man, who felt deeply and acted with decision. One of the most prominent traits of his character was hostility, bitter and undying, to the British government. It was this feeling that impelled him, as it has many thousand other natives of that ill-fated, oppressed country, to turn his back upon Ireland, and seek a home for himself and his children in

"The land of the free and the home of the brave."

The descendants of the Milesian race, the primitive inhabitants of Ireland, however humble may be their condition, scorn to mingle their blood with that of their Saxon oppressors. I have often heard my father boast, with conscious pride and kindling eye, that he and his ancestors belonged to that race, and that not a drop of English blood flowed in his veins. It is not impossible, however, that he may have been mistaken, and that our family is, in fact, of English origin, for, I have met with many of the same name in England. But I regard the whole subject of ancestry and descent, as utterly frivolous, and unworthy of a moment's serious attention; believing with Pope, that

Honor and shame from no condition rise:
Act well your part, there all the honor lies.

I have alluded to the invincible hatred of my father toward the British government, principally because the same feelings are shared by a vast majority of the Irish people, at this very hour. It was that spirit which impelled the Irish volunteers to seek the front ranks in every forlorn hope of our revolution.


Chapter II.

The Emigration of the Author's Father to Tennesse. — Indian Wars. — The Murder of George Mann, in 1794, by the Indians.

WHEN I was about six months old, my parents removed to Tennessee, and settled at the base of the Copper Ridge Mountain, about fourteen miles north-east of the present city of Knoxville. My earliest recollections are connected with this spot, at a period when I was probably not more than five or six years old. The nightly alarm of hostile Indians, and the mountains, with their majestic summits often veiled in clouds, made an impression upon my mind which the lapse of years and the varied scenes through which I have since passed, have failed to obliterate. I well remember seeing my parents, whenever a night attack of the Indians was expected, bar the door of our cabin. After one of these alarms, my father, with gun in hand, looked cautiously out in every direction, to see that no Indian was lurking near the house, before he would venture to open the door. The wakeful vigilance and resolute spirit of my father left the savages but slender hopes of success in that quarter, and our house was never assaulted, though the tracks of the Indian moccasin were often seen upon the premises.

My grandfather, who resided in the vicinity, had built a fort to which our family and others repaired in times of more than ordinary danger, and there, in frontier parlance, "forted" till the danger was over.

In this manner the settlements of Tennessee were harassed for more than a quarter of a century. For many years previous to Wayne's treaty with the Indians in 1795, the Cherokees were deadly hostile to the frontier settlers, and killed not a few of the pioneers of that State.

In 1794, my father rented his place on the frontier, to George Mann, a recent emigrant, and retired with his family into the interior. On the evening of the 25th of May, of the same year, Mr. Mann went out after supper to attend to his horses in the stable, and the Indians, who had probably watched all his motions from their lurking place, shot him. He ran about three-quarters of a mite to a cave for shelter, but his pursuers were fast on his trail and gave him no time for concealing himself. He was found and killed, and his lifeless body mangled and mutilated in the most shocking manner. But their thirst for blood was not yet sated. They hastened back to the house, in the expectation that the unprotected wife and children of their late victim would become an easy prey. They attempted to gain an entrance into the cabin by forcing open the door, but this


Mrs. Mann had securely barred. Fortunately, or, rather ought I not to say Providentially, but a few days before she had requested her husband to instruct her how to set the double triggers of his rifle. This he did, carefully showing and explaining to her the whole process.

One of the Indians, by great exertion and the assistance of the others, had partly succeeded in forcing his body between the door and the rude casing, usually termed in a cabin the "cheek," and would soon have gained an entrance into the house, when the fate of the whole family would instantly have been decided. At this critical moment, Mrs. Mann set the triggers of her husband's rifle and, taking deliberate aim, fired. The ball passed through the body of the nearest Indian and wounded the one immediately behind him.

This was a reception which they had by no means expected from a woman, and they hastily retired from the cabin, carrying off their dead and wounded companions. Then going to the stable, they took out the horses, set it on fire, and beat a hasty retreat, taking the horses along with them.

The flames of the burning building rose high, swaying to and fro in the night air, rendering every surrounding object, the forest, and the outlines of the Copper Ridge, distinctly visible. It was a scene that might well have tried the fortitude of that lone woman, with her infant children, ignorant as she was of the fate of her husband. But when has the devoted wife and mother ever failed to meet, with invincible fortitude, danger, and death itself for those she loved?

Mrs. Mann was apprehensive that the house would take fire from the flames and sparks of the stable, but Providentially it did not. She waited till the building was burned down to the ground, and all danger from that source over, then taking her little children, she fled in the darkness of the night through the forest, a mile and a half, to the residence of my grandfather, calling all the way, at the top of her voice, the name of her husband, still clinging to the hope that he escaped with life, and that the sound would guide him to his wife and children. It need not be told that Mrs. Mann and her fatherless children found protection and sympathy at the house of my grandfather, for the dwellers on the frontiers are proverbial for their kindness to the afflicted, and to all who need their aid. Thus by a mysterious interposition of Divine Providence, our family was spared from the tragic fate which befell that of George Mann.


Chapter III.

The Early Pursuits and Impressions of the Author. — His Visit to the Ancient Domicile of His Parents in Tennessee. — His Intense Feelings on the Scenes of His Infancy. — His First School Teachers.

I REGARD it as a happy circumstance for which I ought ever to feel thankful, that my parents were in moderate circumstances, rendering it necessary for me to share in the labors of the farm from early boyhood, up to the years of manhood. I remember of plowing, when but a small lad, and yet retain a vivid recollection of the knocks, and no very gentle ones, which the plowhandles gave me among the stumps, stones, and roots of an East-Tennessee clearing.

To say nothing of the influence which early habits of industry may have exerted over my moral character, toiling in the open air becoming inured to the vicisitudes of the seasons, sunshine and frost, rain and snow, gave me a vigorous constitution and sound health, which made me to undergo in my Indian campaigns, hardships and privations that would have driven any one, not early inured to labor, from the field.

In 1853, I paid a visit to the State of Tennessee, and made a pilgrimage to the home of my infancy and childhood, the place where once stood the humble frontier cabin of my father. I now revisited that spot for the first time since we bade it adieu in 1800, and removed to Illinois. I had left it a mere boy; a careless, happy child. I returned to it in the wane of life. More than half a century stood between those two points of time. During all that long period of my humble, yet eventful history, the home of my early years lived fresh and green in my memory, just as I had seen it in childhood.

I had expected to find the whole appearance of the country changed, and was not surprised that highly-cultivated farms, with their elegant mansions, occupied a region which I had seen covered with almost unbroken forest. But the most striking feature of the landscape remained unchanged. The mountains were the same. Their lofty summits rose to the heavens with the same sublime grandeur that excited my awe and admiration when a child.

I knew the place where our cabin had stood, though every vestige of its walls and roofs had disappeared for more than a generation. Nothing now remained to mark the spot, except a slight elevation of the ground where the chimney had been, and a few flat stones that had once been our hearth.

I visited this hallowed spot alone. I stood upon the hearthstone of my childhood. The memories of early days thronged around my heart. It almost seemed as if I was once more a


child, listening to the stories my mother told me in the long winter evenings around that very hearth. How well did I remember telling her all my childish griefs, and with what gentleness she chided my waywardness, banishing all my sorrows with her affectionate soothing words. I almost fancied that I could again feel her gentle hand, parting the luxuriant hair that shaded my youthful brow, and her warm kiss upon my forehead and lips. I care not who may sneer at the confession, I wept like a child as I stood alone upon that hearth-stone, and thought of you, my fond, my affectionate, my sainted mother.

I have already told the reader that I was trained to labor from the time that I was capable of rendering the slightest assistance to my father on the farm. But my education was not neglected, that my parents might receive the earnings of my labor. They were always ready to make any sacrifice in their power to educate their children. At that early period, schools in Tennessee were few and far between, and these few not always of a very valuable class. They were generally taught by itinerant pedagogues, mostly Irishmen, often of intemperate habits, and with very few qualifications for an employment so responsible as that of an instructor of youth.

I was sent to school at a tender age. My first teacher was a cross, ill-natured Irishman, as unsuitable a character as can well be imagined to have the charge of a young and diffident child. I was often severely chastised, though I had not intentionally committed any fault. The scholars soon learned to detest him, and learned little else. The unjust severity with which I was treated made the very name of school odious to me.

I mention this circumstance, which may appear to many as a trivial one, simply to caution my readers to beware of committing the instruction of their young children into the hands of a teacher of bad morals and disposition, or ill-governed temper. Kindness of heart is quite as important a qualification in a teacher as an acquaintance with the cube root.

My next teacher was a just and kind-hearted man, who was much esteemed by his pupils. Under his tuition, I became fond of going to school, and improved rapidly. It was a favorite maxim of my father that, the physical powers of the student ought to be exercised, as well as the mental faculties. In conformity with that theory, I was compelled to devote half of my time to severe labor, and the other half to study. I believe that system an eminently judicious one. If it was more generally adopted, fewer young men would leave our colleges and our institutions of learning with an impaired constitution that renders their education of little value. I attended these schools in 1794-5.

I have already remarked that the character of a community is generally moulded in conformity with the circumstances that


surround it. The mode of life, the habits and customs that existed in Tennessee in the "olden times," were such as naturally and almost unavoidably arose out of the condition of settlers of a sparsely-inhabited frontier with little intercourse with the world beyond their mountains, and menaced day and night by a savage foe. Those habits and modes of life have long since passed away, with the circumstances that gave them birth, and exist only in the traditions of other times.

The condition of our border-settlers, even on the remotest confines of the distant West, is far different from that of the pioneers of Tennessee. Hardly is there now a corner of our wide domain, however remote, that has not felt the onward impulse of this "stirring age." The steamboat awakens the long slumbering echoes of the forest, and enterprising merchants send the necessaries of life, and most of its superfluities, to our remotest settlements.

Chapter IV.

The Early Habits, Dress, and Amusements in Tennessee. — Barring Out the School Teacher.

I SHALL be pardoned, I trust, if I attempt to sketch, with a few brief outlines, customs and manners that no longer exist, and all remembrance of which, in a few years more, will have passed away.

The backwoodsmen of Tennessee had almost no trade, except the small barter among themselves. All the articles of merchandise that came to that region were transported in wagons from Baltimore and Philadelphia, over bad roads, and across the mountains. I remember well the interest which the arrival of one of these "store wagons" was sure to excite. The settlers from far and near gathered around it, eagerly enquiring if the trader had brought out this and that article, and what was the price.

The clothing of both sexes was mostly spun, wove, and made up by the family. The men and boys were dressed in hunting shirts, and other garments of linsey, or as frequently was the case, in those of deer-skin. These hunting shirts, especially those for the young, were generally ornamented with a rustic fringe.

A neat, modest girl will always continue to look well, even in the coarsest dress. Her own intuitive taste is a far better guide than the "fashion plates" of a Ladies' Magazine. Many a courtly dame have I seen in London and Paris, flaunting in silks and laces and glittering with diamonds, who, to my humble taste, appeared far less attractively dressed than not a few of our backwoods girls in the simple homespun attire.


Amusements on the frontier were not wanting, either in variety or interest. "Barring out the Master" almost universally attempted by the scholars of the frontier schools, on the eve of a holiday, and more particularly that of Christmas. At the latter season, the school was attended by many young men, and half-grown boys, who managed the whole affair. The first symptom of the "Barring Out" was the respectful petition of the large scholars to the teacher, that he would give the school a vacation of a week or two. This he almost invariably refused, for if granted, he would be compelled to make up every day of the vacation, at the close of this term, which would often interfere with his other engagements. As soon as the refusal of the school-master to grant their request was made known to the school, the leaders in the "Barring Out," with great secrecy planned their mode of operation, and with a feeling that they were conducting an important affair, upon the success of which their own honor and that of the school depended.

No sooner had the school been dismissed for the day, on the evening appointed for the commencement of the rebellion, and the teacher fairly out of sight, than the campaign began.

Their victory depended upon preventing the teacher from entering the school-house again, till he had yielded to their demands. A frontier school-house, in those days, was usually a log building of a rather primitive order of architecture. It had but one door and one window, the only openings through which the enemy, by any possibility, could gain an entrance. Their fortress, therefore, did not require quite as large a force to man it as either Fort Diamond or the Rock of Gibraltar. Provisions in abundance were laid in, enough to last the youthful garrison during a siege of several days, and brought into the fortress. Among other supplies was a very liberal allowance of corn whiskey, which in those times was used as a common beverage by all classes. A store of pine knots was provided, whose light supplied the place of gas and spermaceti candles. The window was rendered secure, the door barred, and henceforth, during the siege, no one would be permitted to enter without giving the watchword and countersign. The whole night long was devoted to frolic and fun. A roaring fire blazed in the capacious fireplace, at which the boys broiled meat, cooked corn-dodgers and other articles of food, for a banquet. They literally occupied "the ground floor" of the building, for the floor of these school-houses was generally the bare earth. They had, therefore, no fear of making a grease spot upon the carpet.

The neighbors, who were in the secret, aiding and abetting the boys, were admitted, and took part in the frolic. Cuffy, with his fiddle, was an indispensible part of the entertainment. Dancing and other amusements were kept up till broad day-light. The boys awaited with a share of bravado, but with real


anxiety, the arrival of the teacher, at the usual hour, to open the school. This was the all-important crisis. If he succeeded, their hopes of a vacation were at an end, their valor would become a public theme of ridicule, and not a few of them stand a pretty fair chance of receiving a handsome thrashing. When the hour of trial arrived in earnest, it often happened that those very boys who had been the loudest in boasting of the feats of valor they would perform, suddenly found that their courage, like that of Bob Acres, had some how or other, all oozed out at the ends of their fingers. In this respect they were not much different from men. In our Indian wars, and on various other occasions, I have discovered that the fierce, swaggering fire-eater, who is ready to face an earthquake when no earthquake is to be faced, is pretty sure to become as harmless as a quaker-gun, whenever he finds himself in the presence of real danger. True, manly courage is never boastful, nor does it put on a fierce, overbearing air.

Sometimes the teacher himself is gratified at being barred out, and a good excuse thus afforded him for a short vacation. In that case, after a little mock resistance, he pretends to yield with great reluctance to their invincible prowess, and grants them all they ask. Instances sometimes, though rarely, occurred in which the obstinate resistance of the teacher was cured by ducking him in cold water.

Numerous kinds of plays were common among the youth, in some of which both sexes took a part. One of these, called "shuffling the brogue," was probably introduced by the emigrants from Ireland, for the name is unmistakably Irish, though it is precisely the same play that is known in England and our own Eastern States, by the name of " hunting the slipper." I could mention many sports and pastimes peculiar to the frontier, which have long since passed away. The descendants of the backwoodsmen have become too much improved in their manners to tolerate any amusement that is not doubly refined and politely insipid.

Dancing parties were frequent. No royal birthnight ball ever exhibited finer specimens of manly and feminine beauty than did these rustic assemblies. The girls grew up to womanhood in the most profound ignorance of corsets, and the whole tribe instruments of torture with which modern fine ladies distort and disfigure their forms in attempting to improve them. They were accustomed, from their infancy, to healthful exercise, plain food, and the pure mountain air. The consequence was, that nature moulded and rounded their fully-developed forms into models for the statuary.

I doubt not that many will smile at my having dwelt thus long upon the amusements of the youth on the frontiers,


regarding the pastimes of childhood as a very trivial theme. So thought not the philosophers and statesmen of Greece.

Chapter V.

Early History and Commerce of Tennessee.

ALTHOUGH the first settlement of Tennessee was previous to "MY OWN TIMES," I shall give a rapid sketch of that, and some succeeding portions of the history of that State. Without such a sketch, some portions of my work would be little understood.

The territorial possessions of North Carolina, long previous to the American Revolution, were extended, by virtue of a Royal grant, from the eastern boundary of that colony to the Mississippi River. This territory, comprising the present State of Tennessee, was an unknown region, inhabited only by hostile tribes, till about the year 1766, when the settlements of Virginia and North Carolina began to extend to the western slope of the great Alleghany chain, into the district of country known at that period by the name of "the Watagah country," from an inconsiderable river of that name. From this period, population began slowly, but steadily, to extend farther and farther West, till it reached the great mountain range that divides East from West Tennessee. Here, for a long period, the onward wave of population was staid.

It was not till the year 1767, that North Carolina extended the jurisdiction of her laws over that region. In that year the whole extent of Tennessee, East and West, was organized into a single county, to which the Legislature, in honor of the future Commander-in-Chief of the American armies, fighting the battles of the Revolution, gave the name of Washington. Sullivan County was established in 1679, Greene in 1783, and Hawkins in 1776. All these counties were in East Tennessee, on the west side of the mountains. Davidson County was established in 1780, and Tennessee County in 1788. These were all the counties organized by North Carolina, within the present limits of Tennessee, before the latter passed from under the jurisdiction of the parent State.

The French colonists of North America, from the earliest period of our colonial history, were successful rivals of our own countrymen in their trade with the Indians. From some cause or other, they were far more successful in gaining the confidence and friendship of the Indian tribes scattered over the western country.

In 1700, the French trappers visited West Tennessee, traded and established friendly relations with the tribes on that side of the mountains, and finally extended their trade with the Indians over East Tennessee.


Charleville, an enterprising Frenchman, ascended the Missisippi and Ohio Rivers with a stock of goods suited to the Indian trade, and established a trading-house at the mouth of the Tennessee, where the flourishing town of Paducah now stands. This was in the year 1714. Another French trading-post was established on the same river, about twelve miles from its mouth; and several others in the vicinity of the present city of Nashville. Near the latter place, the French, at one period, were accustomed to manufacture salt, and hence that region, for a long period, was known among the Americans by the name of the "French Licks."

These French traders mostly had white families residing with them but no town or village of that nation was ever formed in Tennessee.

American hunters and explorers visited West Tennessee in 1769. In the following year, a party of them descended the Cumberland River, with a large cargo of peltries and furs, which they disposed of at Natchez, which was then a Spanish town, forming a part of Florida. This was the first attempt to navigate the Cumberland.

In 1775, Capt. De Montbrun, subsequently commandant at Kaskaskia, traded and made his residence near Nashville. In 1778 a few cabins were erected, and a crop of corn raised in West Tennessee, near Bledsoe's Lick. A large colony emigrated to that section from Long Island in the Holston. A branch of this party went by land, under the command of Gen. Robinson, crossing the mountains at the Cumberland Gap, and wending their way through the Southern part of Kentucky. These intrepid emigrants suffered many hardships in their long and tedious journey, but under the judicious leadership of that excellent man, Gen. Robinson, they at length reached their place of destination in safety. This was in 1780. The other division of that colony, under the command of Col. Donaldson, descended the Holston and Tennessee. Their sufferings on this voyage were truly appalling. Many deaths occurred on the route from the hardships and privations they endured. At length the survivors, worn down with toils and sufferings, joined the other division of the colony at the Bluffs. This body of emigrants was the nucleus of the settlement of Cumberland, as West Tennessee was then, and for a long period afterward, styled.

In 1782, the Legislature of North Carolina laid off a town at the "Bluffs," and named it Nashville, in honor of Gen. Nash, a gallant officer of the Revolutionary War. On the 6th of October of the following year, was held the first court ever organized in West Tennessee. It was held at the new town of Nashville, which was made the county-seat of Davidson County, which at that period embraced an area large enough for a small State.

While the territory comprised within the present boundaries


of the State of Tennessee yet belonged to North Carolina, a determination became almost universal, among the settlers, to "cut loose" from all connection with the parent State, and establish a government of their own. In pursuance of this feeling, delegates were elected from the three counties of Washington, Greene, and Sullivan, who met in convention at Jonesborough, on the 23rd of August, 1784, to deliberate upon the subject of a separate state organization.

They declared the territory an independent state, and gave it the name of the "State of Franklin," in honor of our great American philosopher and patriot. Another convention was held shortly after, at the same place, which adopted a constitution for the new State, and confirmed the doings of the former delegates.

Neither the parent State, nor the General Government, was at all disposed to sanction these proceedings. North Carolina relieved herself from this unpleasant controversy, by ceding the whole territory to the United States. A territorial government was established by Congress, and William Blount appointed by the President, General Washington, as the first Governor.

Gen. White, the father of the distinguished Senator, Hugh L. White, laid off the town of Knoxville in 1791. At that period it was included in the county of Hawkins. Gov. Blount, and the territorial judges, created the county of Knox, and made Knoxville its county seat, and the seat of government for the territory. In 1796, Tennessee was admitted into the Union, and has ever since held a high rank in our confederacy. The State of Franklin, with its constitution, was permitted silently and quietly to sink into oblivion, and not a few of the present inhabitants of Tennessee are ignorant of the fact that such an organization, with all the fearful elements of discord which it might, under other circumstances, have contained, ever existed.

It is difficult at the present day, fully to realize the disadvantages under which Tennessee labored, from the period of its first settlement, down to the cession of Louisiana to the United States in 1803. With a soil and climate admirably adapted to the production of the most valuable agricultural staples of the country, it was useless for the people to cultivate their rich soil beyond what was needful for their own consumption. There was no market for any surplus. No possible price at which any kind of produce might be sold, would pay the expense of transporting to Baltimore, the nearest eastern market, by a land carriage of many hundred miles, over mountains, and on roads that were often hardly passable with empty wagons.

The Mississippi, the natural channel of commerce for the entire West, was closed against them. The banks of that river, on both sides, for several hundred miles of the lower part of its


course, including the port of New Orleans, was in the possession of Spain, whose avowed policy it was to cut off the Western people from the navigation of that river.

Almost the only two articles produced in East Tennessee, that would justify the expense of land-carriage to the eastern cities, were saltpetre and gingseng. The first-named article was found in abundance in many of the mountain caves. It is hardly needful to inform the reader that gingseng is a root that grows wild in certain locations, but all attempts to cultivate the plant have failed. The early Jesuit missionaries to China found a root in use at the court of the Emperor, and by the more wealthy among the Mandarins, to the medical properties of which they ascribed almost miraculous power. It was supposed to grow nowhere else in the world, but in a single mountainous district of no great extent, in China, and readily commanded a most extravagant price. The missionaries sent a description of the plant to Europe. In 1720, the Abbe Lafiteau, a Jesuit missionary among the Indians, discovered it in the forests of Canada. Half a century later, it was found to grow in abundance in the United States. For many years, gingseng obtained a ready sale to our eastern merchants, who exported it to China. The high price at which it was sold made it a valuable article of traffic to the early emigrants of East Tennessee, cut off, as they were, from the usual means of trade and commerce.

Chapter VI.

The Emigration of the Writer's Father from Tennessee to Kaskaskia, Illinois. — Fort Massacre.

THE Spanish Government, to afford protection to their frontiers from the Indians and the British in Canada, encouraged the Americans to emigrate and settle in their domains, west of the Mississippi. Lands were bountifully bestowed on all immigrants, and such other encouragement was held out to them, that many prosperous and important American settlements were formed in the Spanish country. The lead mines also encouraged immigration to New Spain, by which name the country west of the Mississippi was frequently called.

The large and respectable family and connections of the Murphys, who located on the waters of the St. Francis River, south-west of Ste. Genevieve, in the present State of Missouri, emigrated from Tennessee, not far from the residence of my father, and gave popularity to the emigration to New Spain. My father caught the mania — sold out and started for the Spanish country west of the Mississippi.

We left Tennessee in February, 1800, with eight horses and two wagons, for New Spain. Our company consisted of my


parents, six children, I the oldest, three hired men, and a colored woman. We had also another animal with us, a dog, that followed us through good and evil report to the end of our journey. Fortunately we had no other stock. Our clothing, beds, and some farming utensils, with our provisions, made the light freight for our two wagons, which was fortunate, as heavy burdens would have been a great injury to us. We crossed Clinch River at Kingston, and entered the Indian Territory. At that day, the Cumberland mountains were a dreary wilderness, not a settlement on them between Kingston and near the Cumberland River, at the mouth of the Caney Fork, where Carthage now stands. We had strong teams and light loads, so that we crossed the mountains without difficulty. My father had been over these mountains often, guarding the travellers across them, in the time of the Indian wars, and was thereby well acquainted with the various localities in them. This made our travel over them the more pleasant and expeditious. We passed Dixon's Spring, Bledsoe's Lick, Gallatin, and crossed Red River not far from the mouth. We then entered the State of Kentucky and passed the site of the present Hopkinsville. At that day, the jail was the only building in the place. In this vicinity we witnessed the first semblance of the prairies, and in many places they were tolerably well developed. We passed the residence of Judge Prince, where Princeton now stands, and the next conspicuous stand was Ritchie's Horse Mill.

At Lusk's ferry, we reached the noble and beautiful Ohio River in the evening. The river was full up to the top of the banks, and exhibited a magnificence and beauty that was the admiration of our whole travelling caravan. We had often read and heard of the beauty and splendor of this famous river, but it surpassed the liveliest and brightest conceptions we had formed of it. But the pleasures we enjoyed at the sight of this beautiful stream soon vanished, when we cast our eyes across it to the dreary waste of wilderness that extended almost indefinitely from its north-western shores. We were encompassed with a wilderness, filled with savages and wild beasts, and extending on the north to the pole itself, and on the west to China, except a few straggling settlements on the Mississippi and the Wabash Rivers. And to make our miseries complete, our three employed men, who had been engaged to work for my father for a year, abandoned us, took with them three horses, and left us desolate in this wilderness. The scene was appalling and distressing. My parents and six children, myself only twelve years old, without assistance camped in a wilderness.

My father was an energetic man, and possessed extraordinary firmness. He had crossed the Rubicon, and determined to travel on to the west of the Mississippi. He employed a man to assist us through the wilderness, and after making the necessary


arrangements at Lusk's ferry, we crossed the Ohio on a beautiful Sunday morning. We landed at the site in Illinois where Golconda now stands, in Pope County. I well recollect, that the west side of the Ohio was then called "the Indian Country." I recollect asking Mr. Lusk how far it was to the next town? and he laughed and said, "one hundred and ten miles to Kaskaskia, which is the first settlement on the route."

In this journey to Kaskaskia, we were doomed to encounter much difficulty and hardship. The first trouble we had to surmount was a hurricane, that prostrated the trees across the road in such manner, that we could not move on at all until a passage for the wagons was cut through the fallen timber. At this scene of the tornado it snowed on us, and we knew not at first what distance the hurricane extended. We would not return, and it looked impossible at first to pass through so much prostrate timber. The labor of my father surmounted the difficulty. He carefully examined the route, where the last number of trees impeded, and commenced he and his hired man to cut a road over and round this fallen timber. I drove a wagon at a time on the new cut road, and then went back for the other; so that the axes might work all the time. At last we got through the fallen trees, better than we first anticipated.

No other impediment interrupted us, until we reached Big Muddy River. This stream we found swimming, and we lay at it until we could ford it; as no one lived at it, and there was neither ferry or bridge over it. We lay there two weeks, which appeared as long as two years in Paris or London.

On a clear evening, the river commenced to rise without any rain falling, where we camped. It had rained toward the sources of the stream, and we discovered it was useless to wait any longer for it to fall. It was a gloomy and painful prospect before us. Our horses were without food, as there was no grass, and we had no corn. We had as yet plenty of provisions; but our teams were becoming poor and feeble, to such extent that we might not be able to travel.

My father decided to construct a raft, on which to cross the river. The Indians had deadened many of the elm trees near the stream, and they were dry and light. They were cut down and hauled to the bank of the river, and in two days' work a large raft was constructed. The light planks of the wagons made a floor to the raft, and we got our bed cords fastened across the stream, so that the raft could be towed across with ease.

We had two axes, and the hired man let one fall into the river and lost it. This accident alarmed us greatly. If we lost the other, our travelling and rafting was at an end until we procured an axe. We saved the; other, and travelled on West. We rafted four creeks, and travelled round the head of another. The last


we rafted was Beaucoup Creek, some thirty miles east of Kaskaskia. We were four weeks travelling the journey from the Ohio River to Kaskaskia, and experienced much hardship and difficulty in the route.

In rafting the streams, we took the wagons to pieces and crossed them in parcels. The horses swam over; but were at times troubled to get up the perpendicular banks of the streams.

In the present county of Williamson, west of the Crab Orchard, was the first prairie we saw. We halted the cavalcade, and gazed with wonder and delight at it. It was so smooth, it had been recently burnt, and so level, and so extensive that our eyes were dimmed in gazing on it. We wondered what was the reason the timber did not grow on it. No one of us dreamed that it was the fire in the grass that caused the prairies. I have been thus much in detail with our journey to Illinois, as most of the immigrants of that day experienced some such difficulty in travelling to the West.

At the time we reached Illinois, two companies of the United States army were stationed at Fort Massacre, and perhaps a few families resided near the fort and were dependent on it. This was the only white settlement between the Ohio and the Mississippi.

Fort Massacre was established by the French about the year 1711, and was also a missionary station. It was only a small fortress until the war of 1755 commenced between the English and French. In 1756, the fort was enlarged and made a respectable fortress, considering the wilderness it was in. It was at this place where the Christian missionaries instructed the Southern Indians in the Gospel precepts; and it was here also that the French soldiers made a resolute stand against the enemy.

I visited Fort Massacre in 1855, and examined its site and remaining vestiges. The outside walls were 135 feet square, and at each angle strong bastions were erected. The walls were palisades with earth between the wood. A large well was sunk in the fortress, and the whole appeared to have been strong and substantial in its day. Three or four acres of gravelled walks were made on the north of the forts, on which the soldiers paraded.

These walks are made in exact angles, and are beautifully gravelled with the pebbles from the river. The site is one of the most beautiful on La Belle Revierre, and commands a view of the Ohio that is charming and lovely. French genius for the selection of sites for forts is eminently sustained in their choice of Fort Massacre.


Chapter VII.

First View of the Mississippi and Kaskaskia. — The Indians. — My Father Disliked the Spanish Government. — Remained in Illinois.

WHEN we approached the high bluffs east of Kaskaskia we halted our travelling caravan, and surveyed with wonder and delight the prospect before us. It was in the spring, and the scenery was beautiful.

The eye ranged up and down the American Bottom for many miles, and the whole landscape lay, as it were, at our feet. The river bluffs rose two hundred feet or more above the bottom, and the prairie lay extended before our view, covered with cattle and horses grazing on it. The Mississippi itself could be seen in places through the forest of cotton-wood trees skirting its shores, and the ancient village of Kaskaskia presented its singular form and antique construction to our sight. The ancient Cathedral stood a venerable edifice in the heart of the village, with its lofty steeple, and large bell — the first church bell I ever saw. Around the village were numerous camps and lodges of the Kaskaskia Indians, still retaining much of their original savage independence.

The large common field with a fence stretched out from the Kaskaskia River to the Mississippi extended on one side of the village, and the commons covered with cattle on the other. Near the bluff on the east, the Kaskaskia River wended its way south, and entered the Mississippi six miles below the village of Kaskaskia.

This was our first sight of a kind of quasi-civilization we saw in Illinois, and it was so strange and uncouth to us, that if we had been landed on another planet we would not have been more surprised.

The Kaskaskia Indians were numerous, and had still retained some of their savage customs. Many of the young warriors decorated themselves in their gaudy and fantastic attire with paints. Feathers of birds were tied in their hair; and sometimes the horns of animals were also attached to their heads. They galloped in this fantastic dress around our encampment. This was a kind of salutation more to demonstrate their persons and their exploits than anything else.

After recruiting a short time, and obtaining some provisions for ourselves and food for our horses, from the grist-mill of General Edgar, which was "hard by," my father had his humble caravan prepared to cross the Mississippi and "all aboard," when some gentlemen from Kaskaskia came to our encampment and held a conversation with my father. These gentlemen were Messrs. Robert Morrison, John Rice Jones, Pierre


Menard, and John Edgar, who debated the subject with my father, whether it was not better for him to remain at Kaskaskia sometime, and look around for a permanent residence. The argument of these gentlemen prevailed, and my parents agreed to take a house in Kaskaskia, and examine the country "around about."

After taking sometime in the exploration of the eastern side of the Mississippi, my father reaffirmed his decision to make the Spanish country his residence, and went to Ste. Genevieve to obtain a permit of the Spanish Commandant to settle on the west side of the river.

In the permit to settle in the Domains of Spain, it was required that my father should raise his children in the Roman Catholic Church. This pledge was a requisition of the Government in all cases, and my father refused to agree to it. My whole family were Protestants, and would not consent to educate their children in a faith they did not approve. This was the main reason that decided our destiny to settle and reside in Illinois. The visit of the Kaskaskia citizens had no doubt some effect with my father; but the requisition of the Spanish Government was the governing principle with my Protestant ancestors.

It is surprising to witness, through the progress of human events, the small circumstances that frequently occur without much notice, and often without reflection, which often govern the fate and destiny of a person or nation forever. The persecution of the Puritans in old England caused the settlements of New England, and out of it mighty results flowed. The small circumstance of my father disliking the Spanish requisition decided the fate of himself and family as to residence.

We remained in Kaskaskia for some months, and planted corn in the French common field; but at last located in the small settlement a few miles east of Kaskaskia. Our residence was within about two and a half miles of Kaskaskia, and we made mathematically the seventh family in the colony. We made our habitation east of Kaskaskia River in the forest amongst the high grass, and the wolves and wild animals were howling and prowling about us every night. We enjoyed not the least semblance of a school, or a house of worship, or scarcely any other blessing arising out of a civilized community. In this state of the country, it required great moral courage to remain in it. My father conquered all difficulties and remained here during his life.

The wise Creator formed the human family to become familiar and reconciled to the surrounding circumstances. In a few years, we all were pleased and happy in our present wilderness location; but at first, it was extremely painful and disagreeable. Although a great amount of destitution stared us in


the face, yet in a few years, we forgot our artificial wants, and were happy among the Indians and wolves.

Chapter VIII.

Illinois in 1800. — The White Population. — The Indian Tribes. — Hard Fate of the Aborgines. — Want of Schools and Churches. — Agriculture — Farming Implements. — Mills. — Counties. — Government.

THE territory, that at this day embraces the populous State of Illinois, presented at that early period a savage wilderness. The entire white population, French and Americans, amounted to about two thousand or perhaps a small fraction more. The French Creoles numbered about twelve hundred, and the Americans eight hundred or a thousand. The negroes, slaves and free, of that day, amounted to two hundred I presume. The white population extended in sparse settlements from Kaskaskia, fifty odd miles, to Cahokia, and back east from the river only a few miles. The colonies of Turkey Hill, the New Design, Horse Prairie, and that where my father resided, were the eastern limits of the American population, and it would not average back from the river more than eight or ten miles. The eight hundred American inhabitants who resided in Illinois at this time, were located in the following settlements, and in the numbers following, as near as I can estimate them. The whole extent of the American Bottom numbered about three hundred and fifty souls. The New Design contained about two hundred and fifty. These two colonies embraced the principal American population of the country. Six or eight American families resided in Kaskaskia. The settlement where my father located contained seven families, and the Horse Prairie colony less. The settlement around Piggot's ancient fort amounted to some thirty souls, and a less number were settled around the old forts known as "Whiteside's Station," and Belle Fountain. A small settlement had existed and had almost expired in 1800, situated between the present Waterloo and the Mississippi bluff in Monroe County. At one period this colony might have contained thirty-five inhabitants. At Turkey Hill, was a small colony of a few families, containing in all fifteen or twenty souls, in 1800. These were all the American settlements in Illinois at this period.

The entire French population was comprised within the village of Kaskaskia, Prairie du Rocher, Cahokia, and Prairie du Pont, and some few French hamlets besides, which will be hereafter mentioned. Kaskaskia contained five hundred inhabitants, Prairie du Rocher two hundred, Prairie du Pont one hundred, and Cahokia four hundred, amounting in all to twelve


hundred. At this period, the villages of Fort Chartres and St. Philip were extinct. Some few French families resided on the "Big Island" in the Mississippi, in the present county of Madison. A few at Peoria, and a handsome small village at Prairie du Chien. Also a small hamlet at Cape au Grit, on the Mississippi, a short distance above the mouth of Illinois, amounting in all perhaps to one hundred inhabitants, or a few more.

Only a very small number of slaves were Americans, who were held to service by a kind of indenture, and the rest were French. Most of these French slaves resided in Prairie du Rocher, and were the descendants of the slaves brought to Illinois in the year 1720, from the Island of San Domingo, by Philip Francis Renault, to work the mines. This small amount of white population was isolated from the rest of the inhabitants by vast regions of wilderness, except on the west of the Mississippi.

At this early period, considerable colonies existed on the west side of the river, and extended much farther on the Mississippi than the settlements in Illinois. The lead mines of the Spanish country attracted emigration, and the colonies extended back west from the river forty or more miles. These settlements were much larger than on the east side of the Mississippi, although they were in a foreign Government, yet they gave strength and efficiency to the weaker colonies on the east side of the stream.

The Indian tribes inhabiting the wilderness of that day, which is now comprised in the present limits of the State of Illinois, were numerous, warlike, and courageous. The savages at that day all possessed a wild and hostile spirit that existed throughout the North American Indians. The wars had not then subdued their spirits. The Sac and Fox tribes were united, and formed at that day a large, brave, and powerful nation. Their chief residence was near Rock Island, in the Mississippi, and throughout the country around that locality.

The Winnebagoes resided on the upper part of Rock River, and west of Green Bay, north-west of Lake Michigan, and on and over the Wisconsin River. The Pottawatomies inhabited the region between Lake Michigan and the Illinois River, and down that river. The war-like and courageous small nation of the Kickapoo Indians dwelt in the prairies north and east of Springfield, and also in the region of country around Bloomington. The Kaskaskia Indians were housed in by the other tribes to the country around about their ancient village of Kaskaskia. The Piankishaws were located in the south-eastern section of the State, and inhabited the waters of the lower Wabash River, on both sides of that stream.

The most dense Indian population of the West was on the Illinois River, and its tributaries. Also, on the Mississippi, near Rock Island, was a strong Indian population, but not equal to


that on the Illinois River. It is impossible to be accurate in the estimation of the number of Indians who resided in the limits of the State at this early period. I presume it would range between 30,000 and 40,000 souls, and at this day, not one exists in the State.

The destruction of the Indians of North America is a subject that has enlisted the sympathy and deepest feeling of every philanthropist in the Union — whether they acquired the country at first, right or wrong. When the whites discovered it they were the peaceable occupants of it. Generation succeeded generation of the natives, for ages, in the peaceable possession of their inheritance, descended from their ancestors, which gave them as much equity and justice to retain possession of it as any civilized nation has at this day for the country they inhabit.

Not only had the aborigines of Illinois an undoubted right to the country they occupied, but the climate, fertility of soil, and other advantages, made them as happy in their mode of life as the same country does the whites at this time, in proportion to the difference of civilization. The whites discovered the Indians peaceable and happy in Illinois, and at this day all are torn away from their own country, and many whole tribes have been destroyed.

The Government is now affording them all the protection which is in their power, to preserve them from annihilation and make them happy. They are removed from the whites as far as possible, and education has always been urged on them. That wanton and wicked passion, existing in olden times in the hearts of the whites, to destroy and annihilate the natives, as if they were wild beasts of prey, has measurably subsided, and the spirit of kindness and Christianity has taken its place. This humane and Christian policy of the Government has caused much happiness to prevail amongst this unfortunate race. But it seems the destiny of the United States, in its march to the summit level of its greatness, will inevitably destroy the aborigines. To this great and unparalleled onward march of the United States, the aborigines must yield.

If the Government had preserved the natives in their possessions in the Union, only small patches of the United States would be at this time settled or civilized. Attempts have been made for ages to improve the Northern Indians, and they obstinately refused to accept the boon. Most, or all of them from the old States, at last, followed their relatives to the West, and bid defiance to civilization.

It seems it is a decree of Heaven that they cannot become civilized men. The efforts of the most humane men have been exhausted in vain on them, to improve them, and identify them with the whites. Some honorable exceptions exist in the South to this rule amongst some Indian tribes.


The zeal and ardent desire to Christianize and improve the natives caused hundreds of the most learned and pious missionaries to leave Europe, and spend their lives with the aborigines of both North and South America. The first explorers of the country did not visit it for personal advancement or pecuniary gain, but for the more holy object of Christianizing the natives. It cannot be denied: the policy practised by the first Christian missionaries did good; but the country changed hands, and these missionary efforts ceased with it. The Indians are now in the hands of the Lord and the United States Government to guide them to happiness, it is hoped. It seems the progress of the country must make the aborigines yield to the onward march of civilization and Christianity.

In the county of Randolph there was not a single school or school-house in 1800, except, perhaps, John Doyle, a soldier of the Revolution under General Clark, might have taught a few children in Kaskaskia at or after this period.

In the settlement of the New Design, an Irishman, not well qualified, called Halfpenny, at this period, instructed some few pupils. This school was the only one among the Americans at this early day. In the American Bottom, perhaps a school might have existed, but not long at a time. Under the guidance of the clergy in the French villages at rare intervals, schools were established, but their numbers and efficacy were limited.

The agriculture at this period was limited and inefficient. The citizens were generally poor, and raised not much surplus produce. At this period, there was neither barley, rye, nor oats cultivated in the country. Corn, wheat, and potatoes were then, as they are now, staple articles. The Americans cultivated the same species of corn they do now, but the French almost entirely raised the hard flinty corn, out of which hominy was manufactured. They also sowed spring wheat, as their common fields were occupied by the cattle all winter. The Americans mostly raised fall wheat, and at times some spring wheat also. In early times, the French cultivated only a scanty supply of potatoes, or other vegetables, except articles pertaining to the gardens. In horticulture, they excelled the Americans. The lettuce, peas, beans, beets, carrots, and similar vegetables, were cultivated considerably in the French gardens. In this necessary branch of culture the pioneer Americans did not rival their French neighbors, but in a "truck patch" the Anglo-Saxons surpassed the other race. Cabbages were to some extent cultivated, but sweet potatoes then were not seen in the country. In early times, flax and cotton were cultivated considerably. Large stocks of cattle, horses, and hogs were raised in proportion to the number of inhabitants. The French cart was a primitive vehicle, made entirely of wood, and not an atom of iron in its


construction. Running it without grease, it made a creaking noise, which could be heard at a great distance. At this early day the agricultural implements were defective. The old barshare plow was used by the Americans, and sometimes the shovel plow, in the growing corn. The common hoe was the same then that is used at this day.

The French depended more on hunting and voyaging for a living than on agriculture, and therefore paid less attention to the cultivation of the earth. Their plows, and they had but one class of that instrument, was of French descent, I presume, as I saw the same species of plows in Old France. The French plow was destitute of iron, except a small piece, and the same fastened to the point of the wood of the instrument to cut the earth. The metal was tied with rawhide to the wood of the plow, and also a kind of mortice was made in the forepart of the share, in which the front of the wood was inserted. The bar, as it is called, was constructed of wood. The handles were very short and crooked, so that the plowman walked almost on his plow. The beam was straight, and laid on the axle of a low-wheeled carriage. The wheels of this vehicle were low and made without iron, similar to the wheels of a wheelbarrow. Holes in the beam of the plow permitted the instrument to be so regulated on the axle that it would make the proper depth of furrow. The plow was dragged on generally by oxen. The cattle were hitched to the plow by a straight yoke, which was tied to the horns of the oxen by straps of untanned leather.

Some few grist-mills were established in the country in 1800, and one saw-mill. General Edgar had erected a fine flouring-mill on a small stream passing through the Mississippi Bluff, a short distance north-east of Kaskaskia, which did considerable business for two-thirds of the year. This mill manufactured flour for the New-Orleans market, and frequently boats were freighted from this mill with the flour to the Southern market.

Henry Levens had in operation at this date the only saw-mill in the country. It was built on Horse Creek, a few miles from the mouth of the creek, in Randolph County.

Judy owned a water-mill, situated a few miles south of Columbia, in the present county of Monroe. West of this mill, and near the Mississippi Bluff, Valentine owned a small water-mill. In Prairie du Font, Jean F. Perry owned a water-mill for many years. This was the same site where the Jesuits had erected a mill some forty or fifty years previous. Joseph Kiney had a small water-mill on a stream east of the New Design. In all the French villages, and in the New Design also, horse-mills were erected, and some business done by them when the water-mills were dry.

The North-western Territory was divided; and on the 7th day of May, 1800, the Indiana Territory was established.


Illinois formed the western part of the Territory. The two counties of St. Clair and Randolph were formed and organized previous to this period. The county seats were for Randolph at Kaskaskia, and for St. Clair at Cahokia, and courts were held in each of them. William Henry Harrison was the governor of the Territory; and the seat of government was established at Vincennes.

Chapter IX.

Wilderness in the West in 1800. — The Soil and Surface of Illinois. — The Prairies. — Is Timber an advantage to the Country?

THE vast region of country in 1800, extending from a few miles west of Nashville, Tennessee, and west of a few colonies in the North-western Territory to the Pacific Ocean, was a wilderness, except small settlements on the margins of the Mississippi, in Upper Louisiana, and Illinois. A small colony was established around the ancient French village of Vincennes, which interrupted, in a small degree, the wilderness that extended north to the frozen ocean. The wilderness on the South and West was only arrested by the Spanish settlements in Lower Louisiana, and by New Spain and California to the West. Almost all the north-western part of the continent of North America, from these settlements west and north-west was a wilderness, and in the undisturbed possession of the natives.

At that day, three-fourths of the State of Ohio and nine tenths of Indiana was a waste, only occupied by wanderings tribes of Indians. Illinois then had only a speck of white population in its extended limits, and the rest remaining under the peaceable dominion of the red men.

What a change has been produced in half a century by the talents and energies of the American people. The country at this day cannot be compared with itself fifty years back. Neither prose, poetry, nor painting can present ancient Illinois in its true picture to the present generation. Everything is so radically changed and altered that the very soil itself, on which a person has remained all the time, has altered and changed so much that it can hardly be recognized.

Illinois presents generally an even and beautiful surface of the most fertile and prolific soil of any other State in the Union. At some remote period the whole West was inundated, and when the water subsided an alluvial soil is presented in Illinois that cannot be surpassed. The surface has a gradual slope from north to south, which is sufficient to drain off the water and at the same time not to injure the agricultural efficiency of the country. Neither mountains, rocks, nor morasses exist in the ample dimensions of the State to injure it. Some unprofitable


land may now be near the large streams, but in a few years, improvements will reach them, and the whole State will then present an uninterrupted surface of cultivation teeming with agricultural wealth.

The formation of the surface of the earth is a curiosity, and to solve the difficulty is impossible. In many parts of Illinois, and perhaps throughout the whole State, wood and bark of trees are found many feet below the surface. In digging wells for water, these logs and brush-wood are frequently discovered at considerable depths. Mr. Pearce, in sinking a well on high ground in St. Clair County, found the wood and bark of a sassafras tree fifty-seven feet below the surface. To find wood and vegetable substances below the surface is quite common in Illinois. Also in sections of the State, a second soil is discovered when sinking wells. This second soil is black and alluvial, and in it are generally brush-wood and vegetable matter. The second soil is mostly found at the depth of eighteen or twenty feet. Near the salines, in Gallatin County and Big Muddy, earthen-ware has been discovered in the earth many feet below the surface. The presumption is, that the aborigines used this ware for the manufacture of salt. The question arises, how did this great stratum of matter become extended over this previous surface of the earth?

Another equally interesting curiosity is the "Lost Rocks" scattered throughout the prairies in the northern section of the State. The rocks are of the primitive-granite class, and as no other rocks exist near them of that species, they are designated "Lost Rocks." They are larger in the north than in the south of the State. Millstones were, in pioneer times, manufactured out of them. They are mostly a dark-brown color, and made such singular appearance in the prairies that they often frightened our horses when we were "ranging" in their vicinity, in time of the war of 1812.

The question forces itself on the mind, like the case of the second soil, how did these rocks find their way here? No one believes they were formed where they are now.

The most approved supposition is that the Western Valley was once a great lake, and these rocks were embedded in icebergs formed on the slopes of the Chippewaean Mountains to the North-West, and floated down in the water tike the icebergs in the ocean. The larger rocks being in the North would favor this theory. Such subjects, and many others, will remain forever locked up in the arcana of nature. One thing is certain, that the earth shows years of age beyond human computation. The Grand Prairie is situated east of the Kaskaskia River, and between Carlyle and Salem, and is nearly one hundred miles in circumference.

Illinois was parceled out in 1800, between prairie and timbered


lands. All south of a line extending from Kaskaskia by Perry and Franklin Counties, to White County on the Wabash River, is a timbered country, and north of it mostly the prairies intermix with timber. Toward the north of the State, the prairies are large, and the timber only exists on the margins of the streams, and other places where the fire could not reach it.

Many learned essays are written on the origin of the prairies, but any attentive observer will come to the conclusion that it is fire burning the strong high grass that caused the prairies.

I have witnessed the growth of the forest in these southern counties of Illinois, and know there is more timber in them now than there was forty or fifty years before. The obvious reason is, the fire is kept out. This is likewise the reason the prairies are generally the most fertile soil. The vegetation in them was the strongest, and the fires there burnt with the most power. The timber was destroyed more rapidly in the fertile soil than in the barren lands. It will be seen that the timber in the north of the State is found only on the margins of streams and other places where the prairie-fires could not reach it.

It is one of the great elements in the rapid growth of Illinois that such large and fertile prairies exist in the State. Nature has made the prairies the finest and most fertile fields in the Union, and has prepared them ready for cultivation. If the State had been all timber, it would at this day be thirty or forty years behind its present high and prosperous position in the Union.

There is not finer timber in America, east of the Rocky Mountains, than grows in Southern Illinois. This is the main reason that the northern part of Illinois is growing faster than the southern; but so soon as the timber in the south finds a good market, then Southern Illinois "will blossom as the rose." Where the soil is so productive as it is in Illinois, it is probable that it would be better for the State if there was not a tree in it. There is more money made by the production of corn and wheat than timber.

Chapter X.

Fort Chartres. — Its history. — Built of Wood in 1718. — Rebuilt of Rock in 1756. — The French Abandon it in 1765. — English Seat of Government. — Walls Washed down in 1772. — A heap of Ruins in 1855.

WHEN I first saw Fort Chartres, more than fifty years since, it presented the most singular and striking contrast between a savage wilderness, filled with wild beasts and reptiles, and the remains of one of the largest and strongest fortifications on the continent. Large trees were growing in the houses which once contained the elegant and accomplished French officers and


soldiers. Cannon, snakes, and bats were sleeping together in peace in and around this fort.

On the 10th of September, 1712, Louis XIV, King of France, made a grant of a monopoly of the trade of Louisiana to M. Crozat, a wealthy merchant of Paris, for fifteen years; but the commerce of the country not realizing the expectations of the grantee, he relinquished his grant to the King in 1717.

Under the agency of John Law, "the Company of the West" was established the same year, with great powers and privileges granted by the government of France. This company was organized to govern the country — make grants of land and enjoy a monopoly of the trade.

By authority of this company, sometimes known as "the company of the Indies," M. Pierre Duque Boisbriant, the representative of the crown, and Marc Antoine de la Soire De Ursins, principal secretary of the company, arrived at Kaskaskia from New Orleans, with a small troop of soldiers. They had orders to select a site for a fort, and the same to be made the seat of government of Illinois. It was necessary to organize a government in the country, and to erect a fortress to repel the attacks of the Indians, if it should become necessary. It was also the policy of the French Government to establish a line of forts west of the English settlements on the Atlantic, from New Orleans to Quebec. This was one of the garrisons.

This fort was first commenced of wood in the year 1718, and completed in less than two years. It was located in the American Bottom, about three miles from the eastern bluff of the Mississippi, and one mile at first from the river. The fortress was called, by way of eminence, Fort des Chartres, having a charter from the crown of France for its erection. It is situated in the north-west corner of Randolph County. A large lake extends between the fort and the bluff, and at this day a slough containing water at times was near its western base; but this lagoon did not exist at the time the fort was erected.

The first fort contained all the necessary buildings to accommodate the seat of government of the country and the garrison. The quarters of the officers, and barracks for the soldiers, were finished in neat and becoming style of the country in pioneer times. Surrounding the whole was erected a strong palisade, fortified with earth between the walls of wood until it bid defiance to any enemy that might approach it in this remote situation.

The head-quarters of M. Philip F. Renault were also established in this fort, and it was at this point where all his mining operations were concentrated. It was from this point he left Illinois in the year 1744, to return to France. About the time of his arrival in his native land, he died, and the mining operations in Illinois seemed to wither and die with him. He


remained in Illinois about twenty-four years, and seemed to possess a sound judgment and great energy. He imported from France two hundred artizans, mechanics, and laboring men, that was the first and the most profitable population Illinois had ever received from the mother-country at that early day. Many of the French Creoles of this day in Illinois can trace their ancestry back to the brave and meritorious race who immigrated to this country in the year 1720, under the guidance of Renault. He also procured five hundred slaves at the Island of San Domingo, and brought them to Illinois to work the mines. These were the ancestors of the French slaves of Illinois, as heretofore stated.

M. Boisbriant and De Ursans, representing the crown of France, and also the company of the Indies, made grants of land to facilitate the improvement of the country, and which grants are the most ancient west of the Alleghanies. These grants were issued at Fort Chartres, and dated, some of them, in the year 1722, and for many succeeding years.

Under the mild and impartial government of the company, the country commenced to grow and flourish, and the seat of government, Fort Chartres, became the centre of business, fashion, and gaiety of all the Illinois Country. The villages around Fort Chartres, became respectable and prosperous communities; but they ceased to exist with the fort, and the village of Fort Chartres was drowned with the fort in the flood of 1772.

The Company of the West was dissolved in the year 1731, and Illinois again was governed by the crown of France. Boisbriant ceased to be governor of Illinois, and his successor was the brave and gallant young D'Artaquette. This officer was commandant and governor of Illinois in the year 1736, when Governor Bienville of Louisiana decided upon a campaign against the Chickasaw Indians.

D'Artaquette, the governor of Illinois, exerted his influence over the various tribes of Indians west of Lake Michigan, and assembled one thousand warriors at Fort Chartres to descend the Mississippi to meet the army of Bienville from the South. The youthful and chivalrous Vincennes from the Wabash Country united his forces with those of D'Artaquette, and with as many French soldiers as could be obtained, all set sail down the Mississippi from Fort Chartres, under the blessings of the clergy and roar of cannon and small arms. The army was defeated by the Chickasaws, and D'Artaquette, Vincennes, and some others, burnt to death at the stake.

The next military governor of Fort Chartres was La Buissoniere; and in the year 1739, he was called on by Bienville, governor of Louisiana, for a further supply of troops and Indians, to chastise the Chickasaws. La Buissoniere left Fort Chartres with two hundred white soldiers and three hundred


Indian allies, under the command of himself and M. Celeron and M. St. Laurent, his lieutenants, to join the Southern army.

La Buissoniere was the successor of the unfortunate chevalier D'Artaquette, and continued commandant of Illinois for many years. Under his administration the country increased in wealth and population. The agricultural interest assumed a greater efficiency and permanency, and commenced to invigorate the country after the free navigation of the Mississippi was secured from the disturbance of the Chickasaw Indians.

La Buissoniere remained in command at Fort Chartres until the fall of the year 1751, when he was succeeded by the Chevalier Macarty. Macarty left New Orleans in August, 1751, with troops to reenforce the posts on the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers, and took command of Fort Chartres.

Under the administration of Chevalier Macarty, Fort Chartres was built entirely in the new, and was one of the most convenient and strongest fortifications in North America. Its reconstruction was of solid and durable limestone. The rocks were quarried at the bluff, three miles east of the fort, rafted and boated over a large lake, and then carted to the building. They were limestone rocks, which stood, with sullen defiance, the hand of time, but yielded to the destroying hand of man. This fort was constructed in and before the year 1756, to defend against the attacks of the English; as a war was then raging between France and England.

In the year 1766, Captain Pitman, an officer in the British army, who was expressly charged to examine and report on the British possessions on the Mississippi, and whose statements are acknowledged to be correct, says: "The Fort," referring to Fort Chartres, "is an irregular quadrangle; the sides of the exterior polygon are 490 feet. The walls are two feet two inches thick, and are pierced with loop-holes at regular distances, and for two port-holes for cannon in the faces, and two in the flanks of each bastion. The ditch has never been finished. The entrance to the fort is through a very handsome rustic gate. Within the walls is a. banquette, raised three feet for the men to stand on, where they fire through the loop-holes. The buildings within the fort are a commandant's and commissioner's house. The magazine of stores; corps de guard; two barracks; those occupying the square within the gorges of the bastion are a powderhouse; a bake-house; a prison, in the lower floor, of which are four dungeons, and in the upper story, two rooms; and an outhouse belonging to the commandant. The commandant's house is thirty-two yards long, and ten broad, and contains a kitchen, a dining-room, a bed-chamber, one small room, five closets for servants, and a cellar. The commissioner's house, now occupied by officers, is built on the same line as this, and its proportions and the distribution of its apartments are the same. Opposite


these are the store-house, and the guard-house. They are each thirty yards long and eight broad. The former consists of two large store-rooms, under which there is a large vaulted-cellar, a large room, a bed-chamber, and a closet for the store-keeper; the latter a soldier's and officer's guard-room, a bed-chamber, a closet for the chaplain, and artillery store-room The lines of the barracks have never been finished; they at present consist of two rooms each for officers, and three for soldiers; they are each twenty feet square, and have betwixt them a small passage. There are fine spacious lofts over each building, which reach from end to end; these are made use of for two large regimental stores, working and entrenching tools, etc. It is generally believed, this is the most convenient and best built fort in North America."

The above is the description of the fort after its being rebuilt with solid rock. This stone fortification, described by Captain Pitman, presents no incongruity, or misshapen appearance, that could for a moment make the impression that it was an addition to any other building. All the circumstances make it evident that the last-named fort was erected new entirely, and only retained the name and site of the previous wooden building.

St. Ange de Belle Rive succeeded the Chevalier Macarty in the command of Fort Chartres, and retained possession of the fort and country until the arrival of Captain Sterling, of the British army. St. Ange was the last commandant of Fort Chartres under the French Government. Although the treaty was signed in the year 1763, yet the country was not transferred to the British authority until the 17th of July, 1765, and then the commandant, St. Ange, and his troops left Fort Chartres and took possession of the present site of St. Louis, in Upper Louisiana.

The celebrated La Clede, the founder of St. Louis, Missouri, reached Fort Chartres in the fall of the year 1763, from New Orleans, with his large boat, and stored his goods in the fort until early spring. He left the fortress and arrived at the site of the present St. Louis in February, 1764.

The British authorities, under Captain Stirling, assumed the government of Fort Chartres and the country. Captain Stirling died in six months after he took possession of the fort, and the commandant at St. Louis, St. Ange, came back to Fort Chartres and assumed the command of the country until the successor of Captain Stirling arrived at the fort. This act of St. Ange was performed for the kindness he entertained for the people of Illinois, that the country should not remain without an organized government.

Major Frazier, sometimes known as Farmer, assumed the command of the fort after the death of Captain Stirling, and remained in command until Colonel Reed arrived and took possession.


History presents Colonel Reed as a tyrant, and an unworthy commandant of the country. The next British officer who was in the command of the country was Colonel Wilkins. He reached Kaskaskia, 5th September, 1768, and assumed command of the country.

By authority of General Gage, Colonel Wilkins, on the 6th. December, 1768, established a court of common-law, to be composed of seven judges; who held their sessions monthly at Fort Chartres. Colonel Wilkins made grants of land to the citizens, and exercised many other acts of sovereignty over the country.

Charlevoix, the missionary traveller, stated, in the year 1721, that the river was within a musket shot of the fort, and it seems the river was encroaching on the bank near Fort Chartres from the time that fortress, in 1718, commenced its existence, and until the waters destroyed it in the year 1772.

In the year 1724, judging by the complaints of the citizens of Kaskaskia to the government of France, a great flood of the Mississippi swept over the American Bottom, and no doubt washed the banks of the river near the fort. It is stated that in 1756, the fort was half a mile from the river; but the bank of the river next it was continually wearing off, and falling in the river. A sand-bar was formed in the river opposite the fortification, by which the water was violently dashed against the bank next the fort. This sand-bar grew large, and now is known as the Fort Chartres Island. The water between the fort and Island was at first fordable, but afterwards it became forty feet deep. In 1766, the river was within eighty yards of the fortress.

The English Government of the country abandoned Fort Chartres at the downfall of the fort, and established its authority at Fort Gage, on the bluff east of Kaskaskia.

I examined this fort about thirty years after it was abandoned; and it is strange! the large trees could grow in that short time which I saw in the houses, and within the walls of the fortification in many places. Vines and brush-wood grew round many parts of the walls and much of the surface of the fort. The south and east walls, when I first saw them, were remaining in their original shape, and they seemed to be about fifteen feet high, and were constructed to insure strength and durability. The gate-way was opened and the jams and cornices were of nicely cut rock. The powder-magazine, as it was called, was constructed in the most substantial manner.

In 1820, D. Beck, the author of a Gazetteer of Illinois and Missouri, examined and measured the exterior walls. They are 1447 feet around, and were, he states, fifteen feet high in certain places. The area of the fort is about four acres. Comparing together the measurement of Captain Pitman and D. Beck, it


will be seen that about fifty-six feet wide of the entire west front of the fortification, with one side-wall, had been swept into the river.

This magnificent fortress, built at so much expense, in the wilderness of America, and at the same time so strong and so durable, has been declining for the last eighty odd years, and at this day, presents only a large pile of ruins.

I visited this fort on the 10th October, 1854, and found it a pile of mouldering ruins. Its fallen and deplorable condition forcibly reminded me of Volney's beautiful invocation to the tombs. "Hail ye solitary ruins, ye sacred tombs and silent walls. 'Tis to you, my soul enrapt in meditation pours forth its prayer. * * * To me ye unfold the sublimest charms of contemplation and sentiment, and offer to my senses the luxury of a thousand delicious and enchanting thoughts."

And resembling the ruins of Palmira, mentioned by the French traveller, in which dwelt some poor Arabian peasant; so Fort Chartres in its decay contains an humble log-cabin "built within its crumbling walls."

In places, the walls of this fort are torn away almost even with the surface, and will all, I presume, be taken away in a few years. Even the site of this fort, like Troy and Babylon, perhaps, cannot be discovered in a few years. Thus perish the works of man. There is nothing durable but God and Nature.

Chapter XI.

Fort Jefferson. — Its History. — Sketch of Captain Piggot's life. — Sickness of the Garrison. — Indian Assaults. — Heroic Defence. — Abandonment of the Fort. — Piggot's Fort. — The Ferry opposite St. Louis, Missouri.

ALTHOUGH Fort Jefferson was established before MY OWN TIMES, yet so many incidents arising out of the establishment of this fort, extending into MY OWN TIMES, and so many of the pioneers of Illinois being connected with it, that I deem it proper, in the scope of my work, to give some sketches of the history of the fort.

In 1781, the government of Virginia, the great statesman, Thomas Jefferson, being governor, knew that the Spanish Crown pretended to have some claim on the country east of the Mississippi, below the mouth of the Ohio; and to counteract this claim, ordered General George Rogers Clark to erect a fort on the east side of the Mississippi, on the first eligible point below the mouth of the Ohio.

General Clark, with his accustomed foresight and extraordinary energy, levied a considerable number of citizen-soldiers,


and proceeded from Kaskaskia to the high land, known at this day as Mayfield's Creek, five miles beiow the mouth of the Ohio. Here, on the east side of the Mississippi, he erected a fort and called it Jefferson, in honor of the then governor of Virginia. It was neglected to obtain the consent of the Indians, for the erection of the fort, as the governor of Virginia had requested. This neglect proved to be a great calamity. Clark encouraged immigration to the fort, and promised the settlers lands. Captain Piggot and many others followed his standard.

The fort being established, General Clark was called away to the frontiers of Kentucky, and left the fort for its protection in the hands of Captain James Piggot, and the soldiers and citizens under him.

Captain Piggot was a native of Connecticut, and was engaged in the privateering service in the Revolutionary War. He was in danger of assassination by the enemy in his native State, and emigrated to Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania. He was appointed captain of a company in the Revolution by the Legislature of his adopted State, and served under Generals St. Clair and Washington. He was in the battles of Brandy-wine, Saratoga, and marched to Canada. By severe marches, and hard service, his health was impaired so that he was forced to resign his captaincy, and, with his family, he left his residence in Westmoreland County, and came West with General Clark.

Several families settled in the vicinity of Fort Jefferson, and some in it; but all attempted to cultivate the soil to some extent for a living.

The Chickasaw and Chocktaw Indians became angry for the encroachments of the whites, and in August, 1781, commenced an attack on the settlements around the fort. The whole number of warriors must have been ten or twelve hundred, headed by the celebrated Scotchman, Calbert, whose posterity figured as half-breeds. These tribes commenced hostilities on the settlements around Fort Jefferson. The Indians came first in small parties, which saved many of the inhabitants. If they had reached the settlement in a body, the whole white population outside of the fort would have been destroyed.

As soon as the preparation for the attack of the Indians on the fort was certainly known, a trusty messenger was dispatched to the falls of the Ohio, as it was called at that day, and for Years afterwards, for more provisions and ammunition. If support did not arrive in time, the small settlements and garrison would be destroyed, and it was extremely uncertain if succor would reach the fort in time.

The settlement and fort were in the greatest distress; almost starving, no ammunition, and such great distance from the settlements at Kaskaskia and the Falls.


The first parties of Indians killed many of the inhabitants before they could be moved to the fort, and there was great danger and distress in marching them into the fort. Also, the sickness prevailed to such extent, that more than half were down sick at the time. The famine was so distressing that it was said they had to eat the pumpkins as soon as the blossoms fell off the vines. This Indian marauding and murdering private persons and families lasted almost two weeks before the main army of Indian warriors reached the fort. The soldiers, aided and received in the fort all the white population that could be moved. The whole family of Mr. Music, except himself, was killed, and inhumanly butchered by the enemy. Many other persons were also killed. In the skirmishes, a white man was taken prisoner, who was compelled, to save his life, to report the true state of the garrison. This information added fury to the already heated passions of the savages.

After the arrival of the warriors, with Calbert at their head, they besieged the fort for six days and nights. During this time, no one can describe the misery and distress the garrison was doomed to suffer. The water had almost given out. The river was falling fast, and the water in the walls sunk with the river. Scarcely any provisions remained, and the sickness raged so in the fort that many could not be stirred from the beds. The wife of Captain Piggot, and some others, died in the fort, and were buried inside of the walls while the Indians besieged the outside. If no relief came, the garrison would inevitably fall into the hands of the Indians and be murdered.

It was argued by the Indians with the white prisoner, that if he told the truth they would spare his life. He told them truly, that more than half in the fort were sick — that each man had not more than three rounds of ammunition, and that scarcely any provisions were in the garrison. On receiving this information, the whole Indian army retired about two miles to hold a council. They sent back Calbert and three Chiefs with a flag of truce to the fort.

When the whites discovered the white flag, they sent out Captain Piggot, Mr. Owens, and one other man, to meet the Indian delegation. This was done for fear the enemy would know the desperate condition of the fort. The parley was conducted under the range of the guns of the garrison. Calbert informed them that they were sent to demand a surrender of the fort at discretion; that they knew the defenseless condition of the fort, and to surrender it might save much bloodshed. He further said: that they had sent a great force of warriors up the river to intercept the succor for which the whites had sent a messenger. This the prisoner had told them. Calbert promised he would do his best to save the lives of the prisoners, all if they would surrender, except a few whom the Indians had


determined to kill.He said ,the Indians are pressing for the spoils, and would not wait long. He gave the garrison one hour for a decision.

On receiving this information, the garrison had an awful and gloomy scene presented to them. One person exclaimed, "Great God direct us what to do in this awful crisis!"

After mature deliberation, Piggot and the other delegates were instructed to say, that nothing would be said as to the information received from the prisoner. If we deny his statements you may kill him — we cannot confide in your promises to protect us; but we will promise, if the Indians will leave the country, the garrison will abandon the fort and country as soon as possible. Calbert agreed to submit this proposition in council to the warriors. But on retiring, Mr. Music, whose family was murdered, and another man shot at Calbert, and a ball wounded him. This outrage was greatly condemned by the garrison, and the two transgressors were taken into custody. The wound of Calbert was dressed, and he guarded safely to the Indians.

The warriors remained long in council, and by a kind Providential act, the long-wished for succor did arrive in safety from the "Falls." The Indians had struck the river too high up, and thereby the boat with the supplies escaped. The provisions and men were hurried into the fort, and preparations were made to resist a night-attack by the warriors. Every preparation that could be made for the defence of the fort was accomplished. The sick and small children were placed out of the way of the combatants, and all the women and children of any size were instructed in the art of defence. The warriors, shortly after dark, thought they could steal on the fort and capture it; but when they were frustrated, they, with hideous yells and loud savage demonstrations, assaulted the garrison and attempted to storm it. The cannon had been placed in proper position to rake the walls, and when the warriors mounted the ramparts, the cannon swept them off in heaps. The enemy kept up a stream of fire from their rifles on the garrison, which did not much execution. In this manner the battle raged for hours; but at last the enemy were forced to recoil, and withdraw from the deadly cannon of the fort. Calbert and other Chiefs again urged the warriors to the charge, but the same result to retire was forced on them again. Men and women at that day were soldiers by instinct. It seemed they could not be otherwise.

The greatest danger was for fear the fort would be set on fire. A large dauntless Indian, painted for the occasion, by some means got on top of one of the block-houses, and was applying fire to the roof. A white soldier, of equal courage, went out of the block-house and shot the Indian as he was blowing the fire to the building. The Indian fell dead on the outside of the fort, and was packed off by his comrades.


After a long and arduous battle, the Indians withdrew from the fort. They were satisfied; the Indians had arrived at the garrison and they could not storm it. They packed off all the dead and wounded. Many were killed and wounded of the Indians, as much blood was discovered in the morning around the fort. Several of the whites were also wounded, but none mortally. This was one of the most desperate assaults made by the Indians in the West, on a garrison so weak and distressed and defenseless.

The whites were rejoiced at their success, and made preparations to abandon the premises with all convenient speed. The citizen-soldiers at Fort Jefferson all abandoned the fort; and some wended their way to Kaskaskia, and others to the Falls. Captain Piggot, with many of his brave companions, arrived at Kaskaskia and remained there some years.

This flood of brave and energetic immigrants, so early as the year 1781, was the first considerable acquisition of American population Illinois received. Many of the most worthy and respectable families of Illinois can trace back their lineage to this illustrious and noble ancestry, and can say, with pride and honor, that my forefathers fought in the Revolution to conquer the valley of the Mississippi.

About the year 1783, Captain Piggot established a fort not far from the bluff in the American Bottom, west of the present town of Columbia, in Monroe County, which was called Piggot's Fort, or the fort of the grand Risseau. This was the largest fortification erected by the Americans in Illinois, and at that day, was well defended with cannon and small arms. In 1790 sometime, Captain Piggot and forty-five other inhabitants at this fort, called the Big Run in English, signed a petition to Governor St. Clair, praying for grants of land to the settlers. It is stated in that petition, that there were seventeen families in the fort. I presume it was on this petition that the act of Congress was passed, granting to every settler on the public land in Illinois, four hundred acres, and a militia donation of a hundred acres to each man enrolled in the militia service of that year.

Governor St. Clair knew the character of Captain Piggot in the army of the Revolution, and appointed him the presiding judge of the court of St. Clair County.

Captain Piggot, in the year 1795, established the first ferry across the Mississippi, opposite St. Louis, Missouri, known now as Wiggin's Ferry; and Governor Tradeau, of Louisiana, gave him license for a ferry, and to land on the west bank of the river in St. Louis, with the privilege to collect the ferriage. He died at the ferry, opposite St. Louis, in the year 1799, after having spent an active and eventful life in the Revolution, and in the conquest and the early settlement of the West.


Chapter XII.

The French in 1800. — A Different Population. — Devout Christians. — A Happy People. — Observance of the Sabbath. — Fond of Dancing. — Dress. — Taste for the Fashions. — No Ambition for Athletic Sports.

THE immigrants of the French villages being from different sections of the continent, made some difference in the population. Kaskaskia and Prairie du Rocher were mostly colonized from Mobile and New Orleans, and Cahokia from Canada. The language possessed a shade of difference, as well as their habits. In the first-named village, the inhabitants partook of the sunny South, more than those who settled in Cahokia from Canada. A shade more of relaxation, gaiety, hilarity, and dancing, prevailed in Kaskaskia and Prairie du Rocher than in Cahokia. It may be, the immigrants from France to the north and south of the continent of North America, may have been from different provinces of the mother-country, which made the difference above mentioned in the early French pioneers of Illinois.

The masses of the French were an innocent and happy people. They were devotedly attached to the Roman Catholic Church, and had lived for many generations in strict obedience to the Christian principles taught by that Church. They were removed from the corruption of large cities, and enjoyed an isolated position in the interior of North America. In a century before 1800, they were enabled to solve the problem: that neither wealth, nor splendid possessions, nor an extraordinary degree of ambition, nor energy, ever made a people happy. These people resided more than a thousand miles from any other colony, and were strangers to wealth or poverty; but the Christian virtues governed their hearts, and they were happy. One virtue among others was held in high estimation, and religiously observed. Chastity with the Creoles was a sine qua non, and a spurious offspring was almost unknown among them. It is the immutable decree to man from the Throne itself, that in proportion to the introduction of sin and guilt into the heart, in the same proportion happiness abandons the person.

The early French were forced to practise that excellent injunction in the Lord's prayer, "lead us not into temptation." This was a negative lever, if such can exist, in their humble and innocent happiness.

Another principle these French pioneers established, that innocent gaiety, recreation, and amusement are compatible with religion and happiness. These people also observed the


sabbath-day in a different manner than many other religious sects do. The proper observance of the Sabbath is, like many other religious duties, difficult to attain. To keep the Sabbath-day holy is just and right; but the performance of the duty is the difficulty.

For a thousand years past, these Catholic French, and their ancestors in Europe, made the Sabbath a day of religion, rest recreation, and innocent amusement. The Creoles of Illinois observed the custom in this respect, and were happy. Every individual, and every religious denomination, must observe the Sabbath, like other religious duties, in that manner that is dictated by the conscience. On this subject, in practice there cannot be any exact form laid down by which human actions can be governed. But one thing is certain: that the institution of the Sabbath, and its proper observance, is one of the greatest elements of human happiness, and an individual or nation that does not observe the command to keep holy the Sabbath-day, according to their own conscience, is on the road to misery and ruin.

The French generally, and the early Creoles particularly, were passionately fond of dancing. The gay and merry disposition of the French, adopted this mode of social amusement. To enjoy the dancing-saloon was almost a passion among the early French, and for the enjoyment of which they made many efforts. No people ever conducted the ballroom with more propriety than they did. Decorum and punctilious manners were enforced by public opinion. No liquor, cigars, or loud blustering remarks were tolerated in their dancing assemblies. All classes, ages, and degrees assembled together, and made one large family in these ballrooms. The aged would at times dance; but they performed a higher duty. The discreet and aged females kept an eye sharp and searching over the giddy youth. Frequently the priest attended the early part of the evening in the balls, and saw that the innocent and proper observance of just principles be the order of the party.

My observation leads me to this conclusion on dancing: that when this amusement is kept in the proper channel of innocence and purity, clear of extravagance of all descriptions, that it is a harmless and innocent amusement, and might be enjoyed compatibly with, religion, or any other duties of life.

The same taste of the French to enjoy the dance, made them pay much attention to their dress. No people, with the same humble means, made a better display in their dress than the Creoles did. The first shade of a new fashion from New Orleans — which was the Paris of fashions to Illinois — was caught up here by the females, and displayed at their mast-heads. The French resided in villages, and a continual sluice of the voluble Creole language would reach every female in the town on the subject of the new fashions.


It may be remarked, in connection with this subject, that when the English possessed the country in 1765, most of the wealthy inhabitants left Illinois, and settled on the west side of the Mississippi. On this account, the fashions frequently reached Illinois from Miser and Pain Court, the names by which Ste. Genevieve and St. Louis were called in early times.

The working and voyaging dress of the French masses was simple and primitive. The French were like the lilies of the valley, they neither spun nor wove any of their clothing, but purchased it from the merchants. The white blanket-coat, known as the capot, was the universal and eternal coat for the winter with the masses. A cape was made to it, that could be raised over the head in cold weather.

In the house, and in good weather, it hung behind, a cape to the blanket-coat. The reason I know these coats so well is: that I have worn many in my youth, and a working-man never wore a better garment. Dressed deer-skin and blue cloth were worn commonly in the winter for pantaloons. The blue handkerchief, and the deer-skin moccasins, covered the head and feet generally of the French Creoles. In 1800, scarcely a man thought himself clothed, unless he had a belt tied around his blanket-coat; and it was hung on one side the dressed skin of a polecat, filled with tobacco, pipe, flint, and steel. On the other side was fastened, under the belt, the butcher-knife. A Creole in this dress felt a little like Tam o' Shanter filled with usquebaugh, "he could face the devil." Checked calico-shirts were then common; but in winter, flannel was frequently worn by the voyagers and others. In the summer, the laboring-men and the voyagers often took their shirts off in hard work and hot weather, and turned out the naked back to the air and sun. I have conversed with them on this custom. They said, their shirts would be dry from the perspiration, at night, to put on them.

The habits of labor and energy with the French were moderate. Their energy or ambition never urged them to more than an humble and competent support. To hoard up wealth was not found written in their hearts, and very few practised it. They were a temperate, moral people. They very seldom indulged in drinking liquor. They were at times rather intemperate in smoking and dancing; but seldom indulged in either to excess at the same time or place.

All classes observed a strict morality against hunting or fishing on the Sabbath; but they played cards for amusement often on the Sabbath. This they considered one of the innocent pastimes that was not prohibited to a Christian.

They had no taste for either horse-racing or foot-racing, wrestling, jumping, or the like; and did not often indulge in these sports. Shooting fowls on the wing, and breaking wild horses afforded the French considerable amusement.


Chapter XIII.

The Americans in 1800, and Some Years Thereafter. — Emigrants from the South and West. — Exalted Notions of Freedom and Independence. — Self-Reliance. — Different Employments. — Raising Cabins. Family in the House the Same Day it was Raised. — Frolics. — Amusements. — Dancing. — Running for the Bottle at a Wedding — The Dress of the People. — Factory Goods Came to Illinois in 1816 and 1818.

THE Americans were almost entirely emigrants from the Western States: Tennessee, Kentucky, Virginia, and some from Pennsylvania and Maryland, and the manners and customs of those States were represented in Illinois by the pioneers. A New-England emigrant was not common at that day. Although the pioneers knew little and cared less about literature, yet, they entertained just and sound principles of liberty. No people delighted in the free and full enjoyment of a free government more than they did. This passion for freedom made strong impressions on them, and governed their actions and conduct to some extent, in almost everything. This idea of liberty gave them a personal independence, and confidence in themselves that marked their actions through life.

This notion of excessive independence frequently brought them into conflicts and personal combats with each other. Bloody noses and black-eyes were the results. It also gave them a trait of character, that made them believe they were adequate and competent to any emergency, and frequently commenced enterprises above their power to accomplish.

The nature and condition of the country forced on the pioneers intelligence and enterprise. It enabled them to withstand the hardships and privations of the settlement of a new country and the shocks of war itself.

The necessities of the occasion often forced the backwoods'-people into singular and different employments and conditions of life. Sometimes they were compelled to act as mechanics, to make their ploughs, harness, and other farming implements. Also, to tan their leather. At times they were forced to hunt game to sustain their families. In war, when they were called on to defend the frontiers, they frequently unhitched their horses from the plow, mounted them, and appeared with their guns, ready and willing to march to any part of the globe to chastise the Indians.

When they needed meal, and the mills were dry, they pounded the corn in mortars into meal, or eat potatoes, if they were grown, without bread.


The pioneers were exceedingly kind and friendly when a log-cabin was to be raised. Asked or not, they gathered together, and enjoyed a backwoods'-frolic in putting it up.

At early pioneer-times, with all classes and ranks, dancing was the leading amusement. For many miles around, male and female assembled and danced the whole night. The forms of the old dance were different than at present. Jigs and four-handed reels were the most common.

A part of the rural sport in pioneer times enjoyed at a wedding, was running for the bottle. The bride and the bridegroom had parties volunteer to run for the stake. A bottle was filled with whiskey, and embellished with ribbons. This was held by the judges, and all that pleased entered the horses to run for the bottle. A mile, or more, was the distance when it was won, it was presented, with much backwoods' taste and politeness, to the party by whom the victory was achieved.

In many settlements, it required every man in it to be present at a "house-raising," or otherwise the labor was too heavy. The hands on the ground handed up the logs, and the cabin was generally covered before night.

The clapboards to cover the house were split out of large trees, and placed on round poles, called "ribs," and weightpoles were laid on the boards to secure them to their places. Not a nail, or any iron of any sort, hinge, or any thing of iron, was seen about the house.

Often the imigrant and family lived in a camp until his house was up and covered. His neighbors frequently cut the door out in the house the same day, so that the family might move into it, out of the camp, the same day the cabin was raised.

Old and young indulged in much sport and amusement at these "house-raisings." It was, in fact, sport to raise these cabins. I was always delighted to know of a "raising," and generally present. I never possessed the least mechanical talent, and, therefore, never raised a corner; but as an axeman, I split clapboards or the like.

The amusements occurred generally when the axemen were notching down the corners. The young ones were jumping, wrestling, or running foot-races. Leap-frog was often indulged in by old and young. Sometimes, shooting at marks was practised. Many carried their guns to these "raisings."

It was often amusing to hear a Kentuckian relate his adventures on flat-boats, "the old Broad Horn," to New Orleans. At times a bottle, called "Black Betty," filled with Monongahela whiskey, would make its appearance at these "houseraisings," and then was told the "hair-breadth escapes" and adventures of the pioneers.

Sometimes a Kentucky-boatman appeared at these frolics.


Perhaps he had been one of those celebrated characters known on the western rivers, as "half-horse, half-aligator, and tipped with the snapping-turtle." One story from him will be presented. He said he landed his boat on a dark night at Louisville, and back of the town, the negroes had a corn-shucking. Many darkies were present, and the corn-heap was divided. Captains of the blacks were selected, and the hands divided. Rails were put across the corn-pile for a division, and each party had his half of the pile to husk. A race was commenced in this manner, that became frequently very exciting with the blacks, and often with the whites also, under this system.

The boatmen wanted a frolic, and filled their hunting-shirts when belted around them, with round stones, picked up at the edge of the Ohio River. In the dark, the boatmen slipped up near the darkies, who were singing and shucking the corn, and would throw a rock at the black crowd, when the darkies could not see the rock, or whence it came. Often the blood came trinkling from the faces of the Africans, and they would presume it was an ear of corn thrown by the opposite contending party. At the same time, another boatman would throw another rock at the other party. The blacks would swear at each other, and make tremendous threats. Before they closed their threats, another rock from a boatman would strike another darky; so that in a short time the whole negro assembly were in a general battle-royal, and the boatmen hid enjoying the sport. The overseers, and other whites present, were often troubled much to quiet these negro-battles.

I saw in the moonlight, at one of these pioneer-gatherings, a wild and dangerous frolic played off, that might have killed two men.

At the top of the hill, where the house of my father stood, there were some large gums filled with wet ashes, after the ley had been run off. The gums were heavy — some had been rolled down the hill, and a talented wild backwoodsman, James Hughes, got two men, who were a little excited with the Monongahela, to roll down the hill one of these gums. As they got the gum in pretty fast motion down the hill, Hughes came behind them, and pushed them both over the rolling gum. It was very large, and rolled over one of the men, and the other scuffled out at one end, it rolling over only his feet and legs. The man the gum rolled over was considerably hurt. His head and body were much bruised. It made a great laugh and much sport for the boosy party.

The pioneer, James Hughes, who played this trick in rolling the gums, was an excellent man of sound judgment and strict integrity.

Another trick was practised on some persons at another backwoods'-frolic, which caused some bruised feet.


It was a fashion at these meetings, and under the influence of liquor, to kick one another's hats. These hats were generally wool and frequently worn for years; so that they were not much injured by the operation. Hughes saw some pots in the shade of the house, and put hats over them. Then he got a few of those loving the sport of kicking, to move their play in the neighborhood of the covered pots. They kicked the hats on the pots, to the great injury of their toes. This trick made great merriment.

The common dress of the American pioneer was very similar. Home-made wool-hats were the common wear. Fur-hats were not common, and scarcely a boot was seen. The covering of the feet in the winter was mostly moccasins made of deer-skin, and shoe-packs of tanned leather. Some wore shoes, but not common in very early times. In the summer, the greater portion of the young people, male and female, and many of the old, went barefooted. The substantial and universal outside wear was the blue linsey hunting-shirt. This is an excellent garment, and I never have felt so happy and healthy since I laid it off. It is made with wide sleeves, open before, with ample size, so as to envelope the body with its folds, almost twice around. Sometimes it has a large cape, which answers well to save the shoulders from the rain. A belt is mostly used, to keep the garment close and neat around the person, and nevertheless, there is nothing tight in it to hamper the body. It is often fringed, and at times the fringe is composed of red, and other gay colors. The belt frequently is sewed to the hunting-shirt. At times, a belt of leather with a buckle sewed to one end is used. Many pioneers wore the white blanket-coats in the winter. They are, as well as the hunting-shirt, an excellent garment. They are made loose, and a cap or a cape to turn over the head in extreme cold weather. I have worn them almost every winter, when I was young. The vest was mostly made of striped linsey. The colors were made often with alum, copperas, and madder, boiled with the bark of trees, in such manner and proportions as the old ladies prescribed. The shirts worn by the Americans were generally home-made of flax and cotton-material. Some voyagers and hunters among the Americans wore calico and checked shirts, but not common. The flax and cotton were raised at home, and manufactured into shirts. Looms and flax-breaks were at that day quite common, and cotton-gins made of wooden rollers.

In the colonies of the American Bottom, and the New Design, a considerable number of sheep were raised, which furnished the wool used at that day.

The pantaloons of the masses were generally made of deerskins and linsey. Course blue cloth was at times made into


pantaloons. At that day, the factory-goods did not exist. The factory-goods, from New England and Kentucky, reached Illinois about 1818, and then looms, cotton, etc., disappeared — spinning also ceased then. Almost every pioneer had a rifle and carried it almost wherever he went.

I have often seen many rifles stacked away outside of the house of worship, while the congregation were within attending the service. Almost everybody was then a hunter, and they might see a deer on Sunday as well as on other days.

Linsey, neat and fine, manufactured at home, composed generally the outside garments of the females as well as the males, in the olden times. The ladies had the linsey colored and wove to suit their fancy, which made a neat and comfortable clothing for winter.

The youngsters, females as well as males, did not always wear covering on their feet, except at meeting or dances.

A bonnet, composed of calico, or some gayly-checked goods, was worn on the head when they were in the open air. Jewelry on the pioneer-ladies was uncommon. A gold ring was an ornament not often seen.

Chapter XIV.

The Progress of the Country for Five Years from 1800. — Sickness. — "Seasoning" of Emigrants. — Settlements, Ridge Prairie. — Goshen. — Name of Goshen. — Blair on the Site of Belleville. — Settlements East and South-West of Belleville. — Colonies in Horse Prairie, East of Kaskaskia. — The French Colonies. — Pioneer-Squatters on the Public Lands. — Murders of the Indians. — New Mill. — Shawneetown. — Saline Purchased by the Indians. — Shawneetown Commenced. — Mr. Bell Leased the Saline. — Big Bay. — Daniel's and Wood-River Settlements Commenced. — Wilderness Yields to Improvements. — Population.

DURING this period, Illinois was isolated from the States, and was a remote, weak, and desolate colony. The population and improvements increased slowly. The frontiers were gradually enlarged. Additions were made to the various colonies, and the country commenced to be known more thoroughly throughout the Western States. The idea prevailed at that day, that Illinois was "a graveyard," which retarded its settlement. Only those settled in it, whose judgment overcame the prejudice that was raised against the health of the country. And, in fact, the country was at that day much more severely visited by the bilious diseases than at present. The vegetation was stronger and more abundant then than at present, and the


inhabitants were more exposed then than they are at this time. The seasoning, as it was called, then was almost certain to visit every imigrant the first or the second year after his arrival in the country.

In 1802, the settlements of the Ridge Prairie, north of Belleville and the Goshen settlement, were formed. The last-named colony embraced about the present limits of Madison County. The large, moral, and worthy family of the Gilhams and connections, formed a great portion of the Goshen settlement. The Whiteside family and connections, also large and respectable, located in the same colony. The leading pioneers and patriarchs of this settlement were Samuel Judy; five aged and respectable brothers, Thomas, John, William, James, and Isaac Gilham; William B., Samuel, Joel, and others of the Whiteside family; these, together with others too numerous to mention, laid the foundation of the present county of Madison in and about the time above mentioned.

The name of Goshen was given to this locality of Illinois by the Rev. David Badgley — he and others visited it in 1801, and gave it the name of Goshen.

About the same year, the Lemens, Ogles, Badgleys, Kinney, Whitesides, Phillips, Riggs, Varner, Redman, Stout, Pulliam, and others, formed the colony situated north and east of the present city of Belleville.

George Blair, this year, settled on the site of the present city of Belleville, and his cornfield then occupied the public square of this city. Eyeman, Stookey, Miller, Teter, and others, formed the colony a few miles south-west of Belleville. All these settlements were included in the county of St. Clair.

In Randolph County, the settlements increased in the Horse Prairie, on the Kaskaskia River, and near Levens' Mill, on Horse Creek. The founders of these colonies were Levens, Teter, Pulliam, Grovenor, Going, and others. Beaird, Fulton, Huggins, McCullough, Bilderback, Roberts, Lively, and a few others, were added to the colony east of Kaskaskia, where my father resided.

In this period, the French population might have increased some few, and the improvement made by them may have been some little enlarged — the natural increase was nearly all the accession. The imigrants from Canada numbered about as many as left the country and died in the mountains and on the rivers.

The population of Illinois within two years may have increased some few hundreds, but scarcely a thousand souls in all.

It must be recollected that a great portion of these new settlements above mentioned were formed by inhabitants already residing in the country, and not entirely by immigrants.


The improvements of farms kept about equal pace with the increase and extension of the settlements. Almost every inhabitant was a farmer, and made some improvements, mostly on the public domain. At this early day, the public lands were not surveyed or in market, so that the most of the pioneers were squatters on the government lands.

A few only had purchased "floating rights," and others patented lands, and were settled on them. The ancient inhabitants of Illinois had grants made to them of their lands occupied at the time, and some of these lands were purchased by the immigrants who lived on them; but the other improvements, besides the farms, were not advanced at all.

A few mills might have been erected, but no school-houses or church edifices were built new in the country. Some few schools at this day existed in the old colonies, but none in the new settlements.

In connection with the settlement of Goshen, a blood-thirsty murder was committed in 1802. Turkey Foot, a savage chief of the Pottawatomies, and a few of his warriors, murdered Alexander Dennis and John Vanmeter, at the foot of the bluff, four miles south-west of the present town of Edwardsville. This was a wanton and barbarous murder of two good citizens, in time of peace and without provocation.

The colony was feeble and unprepared to pursue the Indians, and they escaped with impunity. Gov. Harrison made a requisition on the nation to give up the murderers; but none were surrendered, and the matter dropped. An unprovoked murder, committed by the Indians, occurred in 1805, in the present county of Gallatin. Mr. Duff was killed near the Island Ripple in the Saline Creek, and he was buried near the old salt-spring. It was supposed the Indians were hired to commit the murder. Here rested the murder of Duff.

Tate and Singleton, this year, 1802, erected a good water-mill on the Fountain Creek, a few miles north-west of the present town of Waterloo. This mill did a good business for several years: but is abandoned at this time. About this period, General Edgar made salt at his saline at the bluff in the present county of Monroe, nearly opposite Waterloo.

In this year, Michiel Sprinkle, a gunsmith, was the first white man who resided in Shawneetown, situated on the Ohio River, Gallatin County. The Indians requested Governor Harrison to permit him to reside with them to repair their guns.

The next settler was La Boissiere, a Frenchman. He traded with the Indians, fished, and kept an "humble ferry" on the Ohio, to cross the citizens to and from the Ohio salt works, which were back about twelve miles. This was the nucleus around which Shawneetown commenced, in 1802.

Shawneetown was occupied by a village of the Shawnee


Indians, for many ages, and it was the place where Major Croghan, the English officer, camped in his explorations of the country, in 1765. He had a battle there with the Indians.

When this site was first occupied, in modern times, it was covered with a dense canebrake, and the squatters in it were located on the public lands.

The old salt-spring, and its environs, situated about twelve miles north-west of Shawneetown, attracted the attention of the imigrants about this time, and around it commenced a colony. This settlement increased and extended in every direction, until a sparse colony was formed around the salt-works and Shawneetown, before the year 1805.

In 1803, Governor Harrison purchased of the Indians the salt-works, and some land around them. The same year, Captain Bell, of Lexington, Kentucky, leased the saline, which caused the imigration to this section of Illinois.

On Big-Bay Creek, not far from the Ohio River, on or before 1805, several families had permanently settled. These colonies were weak, and surrounded with Indians, yet they sustained themselves, and have now the honor to be numbered in the front ranks of the pioneers of Southern Illinois.

On the old Fort Massacre road to Kaskaskia, where it crossed Big Muddy River, a settlement was made in 1804; and a few miles east, on the same road, were the settlements of Phelps and Daniels, which were commenced some short time, and sustained themselves. Also, on Grand Pierre Creek, above the present. Golconda, in Pope County, settlements commenced in 1805, and continued, although much embarrassed at the time. On Big Muddy, in the present county of Jackson, two families, Griggs and Noble, were the first to plant civilization in that locality.

In 1804, Wood River settlement, north of Goshen, was established by the. Pruitts and Stocktons, Jones, Rattans, and others, and the Six-Mile Prairie, in the present county of Madison, was increased by the families of Cummins, Gilham, Carpenter, Waddle, and others, considerably. The Ridge Prairie, in Madison and St. Clair Counties, received many permanent settlers before 1805. Barney Bone, Charles Wakefield, A. Bankson, and perhaps some others, made the first settlement east of Silver Creek, in St. Clair County, in the spring of 1804. This location was made on the high land, east of the creek and south.of the present road from Belleville to Hanover. Another settlement was formed a few miles north of the present town of Lebanon , by Bradsby, Galbreath, and others, about this same time. The next year, considerable settlements were made toward the mouth of Silver Creek and on the Kaskaskia River — Jordan, Thomas, and others, located this year, 1805, near Silver Creek, south-east of Shiloah.


The French villages in St. Clair County, known as "the French and Quentine villages," were commenced in 1805, and prospered for some years considerably.

The Turkey Hill colony, which had been established by the venerable patriarch, William Scott, in the year 1787, also increased its frontiers to some extent about this time. The settlement south-west of the present city of Belleville also enlarged its dimensions.

In the year 1805, about fifteen families from South Carolina settled on the east side of the Kaskaskia River, about ten miles above Kaskaskia, and made a respectable colony, where their decendants enjoy peace, comfort, and happiness to this day.

The whole country, during these five years, commenced, in a small degree, to change its character. The extreme backwoods habits of hunting, sporting, gaming, and idleness, were gradually laid aside, and more industry, more cultivation of the earth, and more ambition to accumulate wealth, commenced; the rifle and bee-bait were exchanged for the plow and the jack-plane; cabins were sometimes adorned with stone chimneys, and the dogs for hunting were dismissed; band mills, propelled by horse power, took the place of the old hand mill and mortars, worked by man power; school-houses, to a small extent, were erected, and the gospel preached in some sections of the country at and about the close of this period; the bibles and spelling-books took the place of the rifles and the steel-traps, and a savage wilderness commenced to yield to Christianity and civilization. Much was still to be done in Illinois, after this period, but much was also done during these five years.

It is almost impossible to be exactly correct as to the increase of population in this period. It is estimated that in 1803 there were three thousand inhabitants in the Territory, and perhaps one thousand more might be added with safety for the increase in two years, so that at the end of the year 1805, four thousand souls, French and Americans, may be considered about correct in Illinois.

Chapter XV.

The Morals of the Illinois Pioneers.

THE poverty of the country in early, times, and the sparseness of the population, must furnish the reason that the pioneers of the country at an early day were more moral than the people are at present. It requires the means, as well as the intention, to commit sin. One other reason is, perhaps, that in early times the people being fewer in number and knew one another better than they do now. Then public opinion was


more certain to fix on a crime and criminal than it is now, when the people are so numerous and seem to be more irresponsible. It is my sincere conviction that morality was more practised and more respected in early times in Illinois than it is at this day. I have lived through all the various scenes and changes in the country for more than half a century, and have almost the whole of this period been amongst the people. Under these circumstances I cannot be mistaken; and I state that the people fifty years since, in Illinois, were more moral than they are at this time.

A white man and an Indian were hung for murder in Kaskaskia, one in 1802, and the other in 1804, and none other was hung in Illinois until 1821, in Belleville. In twenty-two years, to have but two capital punishments, one an Indian, is speaking volumes for the morality of the people. Thefts were of rare occurrence; and forgery, perjury, and similar crimes were seldom perpetrated.

The courts were in session four times in each year in Cahokia and Kaskaskia, and grand juries attending them; but if I recollect rightly, the juries were frequently adjourned without finding one single indictment.

These are the higher crimes I mention as being of rare occurrence — the lower violations of the law were not so rare: assaults and batteries, riots, and similar misdemeanors, arising out of a wild, reckless independence, sometimes occurred. These breaches of the law did not involve any corruption of the heart, but were such that at times they may occur in any community.

It is true that the use of intoxicating liquors was indulged in at that day, some more then than at present. Drinking in primitive times was fashionable and polite, and liquor was considered an element in the conviviality of all circles — Public opinion sustained the use of the bottle at that day, but now it severely condemns it — this is some palliation for the pioneers.

The French were never an intemperate people in the use of liquor.

Most of the drinking and intemperance indulged in by the Americans was in the villages of Cahokia and Kaskaskia, and many good citizens were injured by the excessive use of ardent spirits.

I had reached my fifteenth or sixteenth year, and had seen in the villages and other places much intemperance and immorality arising out of drunkenness. I deliberately reflected on the subject, and, without; consulting any one, or any one knowing it, I took a solemn resolution never to drink any distilled spirits whatever. My father had fallen into the habits of intemperance to a considerable extent, which was the main reason that induced me to make this decision. He had injured himself and family by his use of ardent spirits; and I was


fearful if I drank at all I might fall into the same habits. My humble character was developed some at the time, and I possessed, I feared, the same traits which my father had, which might lead me into the same errors. I was satisfied then, as I am now, that there is no certainty in any other manner than to abstain entirely from intoxicating drinks, if a person wishes to be a sober man. I saw in what manner liquor operated on my father — that when he entered into gay and exciting society that it seemed almost impossible for him to refrain from drinking. This decision has been no doubt of essential service to me, and perhaps saved me from ruin. At that time, I had scarcely ever tasted spirits, and knew not at all how it would operate on me; but I saw that liquor had ruined many men, and I concluded it was the safest course to drink none at all.

In early times, in many settlements of Illinois, Sunday was observed by the Americans only as a day of rest from work. They generally were employed in hunting, fishing, getting up their stock, hunting bees, breaking young horses, shooting at marks, horse and foot-racing, and the like. When the Americans were to make an important journey they generally started on Sunday and never on Friday — they often said "the better the day the better the deed."

In many of these American settlements there were no clergymen or houses of public worship, and consequently no religious meetings. Many, like they are at present, would go to church if they had the opportunity. Other colonies observed the Sabbath in a different manner. The older the settlement was, generally, the more the religious worship was observed in it. The aged people everywhere generally remained in their houses on the Sabbath, and read the Bible and other books. Not many worked at their ordinary business on Sunday. It was a custom and habit to cease from labor on that day, except from necessity. When any farmer, in olden times, cut his harvest on Sunday, from necessity, public opinion condemned it more severely at that day than at the present. With the Americans there was no dancing and very little drinking on the Sabbath.

The French colonies observed the day in a different manner than the Americans. Worship ended and church over, they were more relaxed in their deportment and enjoyed the rest of the day in amusements, merriment, and recreation. Dancing, training the militia, house-raising, and similar performances, were in pioneer times indulged in by the French on the Sabbath. Public sales of land and other property in early times was held by the French at the church doors on Sundays, after the service was closed. I have seen the young folks in France dancing on a Sunday evening under the shade of the trees, on the grass, with as much gentility and decorum as if the dance had been on any other day of the week. The old people were


frequently seated around and enjoying the amusement with decided approbation. These customs are congenial to French vivacity and cheerfulness.

The French population frequently assemble on the Sunday evenings and discuss their public business.

The French are guarded against the breaches of the higher penal laws.

There never was a Creole Frenchman hung in Illinois since the earliest settlement of the country. Some colored persons were hung in Cahokia for the pretended crime of witchcraft. No Creole was ever sentenced to the penitentiary of this State. Misdemeanors, such as keeping a drinking-house open on Sunday, and similar offences, they are at times guilty of, and punished by the laws.

In common broils and personal combats the French rarely engaged. They detested a quarrelsome, fighting man; but they had a class of bataillers, as the French called them, who prided themselves in single combat.

The Americans indulged in personal combats in those days more frequently than at present: very seldom they had "pitched battles," as they were called, but would fight on the spur of the occasion, and frequently make it up before they parted. They scarcely ever fought unless they had been drinking, and commenced in the heat of passion. In these American fights, no rules were observed, but, at times, eyes and ears were much injured and sometimes destroyed. There is no exhibition of human nature in much more degraded and brutal condition than to be engaged in a "pitch-battle" or a "prize-fight" — any fighting is detestable and degrading, but a fight for a wager puts the contestants and the spectators below the level of the beast; and a government or public opinion that will not punish it with the severest penalties of the laws deserves the condemnation of every honest man.

Chapter XVI.

Gaming and Sports of the Pioneers of Illinois. — Cards. — Loo. — Shooting Matches. — A Keg of Whiskey. — Metheglin. — Horse and Foot Races. — The Author Engaged in Racing. — Working Frolics. — Females Attend.

ALL species of gaming were indulged in by the original inhabitants of Illinois. I do not pretend to say that every person was devoted to gaming; but it was considered at that day both fashionable and honorable to game for money; but as gentlemen, for amusement and high and chivalrous sports. In this manner a great many gambled. Card-playing was sustained


by the highest classes as well as the lowest in the country. A person who could not, or would not, play cards was scarcely fit for genteel society. The French delighted much in this amusement, which gave the card parties much standing and popularity with the Americans. The French, at that time, had the ascendency in the country, and their manners and habits gave tone and character to many such transactions. The French masses, in early times, played cards incessantly in the shade of the galleries of their houses, in the hot summer months. They frequently played without betting; but at times wagered heavily. Card-playing was mostly the only gaming the French indulged in. The ladies of that day, amused themselves often in these games, and as they do at this day. At times, the Americans as well as the French, bet heavily at cards, although they were not considered gamblers. The voyagers and Courier du Bois indulged in this sport more than any other class of citizens.

The most common game of cards at that day was called Loo; and in this game, and in many others, I was frequently engaged like other folks of that time. I have lost or won considerable amounts in an evening. I never considered card-playing as the most innocent amusement; but I yielded to the customs and habits of the country. When I was appointed one of the Judges of the Supreme Court of the State, in 1818, I abandoned card-playing, and every other species of gambling for money.

Shooting matches, with the Americans, were great sport. Almost every Saturday in the summer, a beef, or some other article, would be shot for in "the rural districts," and the beef killed and parcelled out the same night. A keg of whiskey was generally packed to the shooting-match, on horseback. Sometimes, a violin appeared, and "stag dances," as they were termed, occupied the crowd for hours.

In 1804, I witnessed a match of shooting in the orchard of Gen. Edgar, a short distance west of Kaskaskia. It was a match between John Smith and Thomas Stubblefield, and the bet was one hundred dollars. Smith won the wager.

A small, tricky game for whiskey was often played in these keg groceries, which was called "Finger in danger." Every one that pleased put his finger down in a ring, and then some "knowing one" counted the fingers until the count reached some number agreed on, and the finger at that number, when it was touched was withdrawn, and so on until the last finger in the ring was left, and then it had to pay for the treat.

Aged matrons frequently attended these shooting matches, with a neat clean keg of metheglin to sell. This drink is made of honey and water, with the proper fermentation. It is pleasant to drink, and has no power in it to intoxicate. The old lady often had her knitting or sewing with her, and would frequently


relate horrid stories of the tories in the Revolution in North Carolina, as well as to sell her drink.

In the early days of Illinois, horse-racing was a kind of mania with almost all people, and almost all indulged in it, either by being spectators, or engaged in them. The level and beautiful prairies seemed to persuade this class of amusement.

The quarter races were the most common, and at which the most chicanery and jugglery were practiced. In quarter races, more depends on fast judges than fast horses. All classes of horse-racing requires sound practical judgment, and much knowledge of both horses and men, to succeed in the business. Much time, money, and morals were lost in these early sports of the turf.

In my youth, I possessed, like many others, a species of mania for horse-racing, and was tolerably successful in the vocation. I delighted extremely in a fine race-horse, and have expended much time in training them. Just preceding an important race, I have slept on a blanket in the stable-loft to take care of my horse. Sharpers may poison a horse, or take him out in the night and try his speed with their race-horse.

The most celebrated and famous horse-race in early times in Illinois, was run in the upper end of the Horse Prairie, in the spring of 1803, between two celebrated horses. These horses were of the same sire, and ran three miles and repeat, for a wager of five hundred dollars. The bye-bets and all must have amounted to one thousand dollars, or more. At that day, a thousand dollars were worth nearly ten thousand at this time. Almost every American in Illinois attended this race.

Foot-racing, jumping, and wrestling were practised by the Americans in early times; and many bets were made on footraces, as well as on the horse-races. As I reached man's estate I was delighted with these rural sports, and became a swift foot-racer myself. When I arrived at the years of eighteen or twenty, I grew large and active. My ambition, which was an ardent passion with me, urged me to excel in these athletic sports. I practised foot-racing incessantly, and discovered I was hard to beat. The first race I ever run for a wager, was in Kaskaskia, in the summer of 1808, with the Hon. John Scott, of Ste. Genevieve, Missouri. After the above race, a bet of a hundred dollars was made on a foot-race of one hundred yards to be run by me and a person of the name of Paine. The race was to-be run at the place of Mr. Kinney, of Illinois, Gov. Kinney, a few miles east of Belleville. Paine got sick and did not attend the race. I mention these small matters for the object of showing the sports and games of the pioneers of Illinois; and also, for the purpose of relating "the story of my life," as humble as it may be.

Working frolics in pioneer times were also common. The


whole neighborhood assembled and split rails, cleared land, plowed up whole fields, and the like. In the evenings of these meetings, the sports of throwing the mall, pitching quoits jumping, and the like, generally closed the happy day. The females assembled also, and were engaged in quilting, carding wool, and talking. The female gossips were conducted at these gatherings in the same spirit as they are all over the world. At these places, their expressions were common: "Do not repeat this." "It may not be true on the lady." "This is a secret between you and me."

Chapter XVII.

Hunting and Fowling in Illinois.

IN all the frontiers of the West, hunting and fowling were an element by which to obtain a livelihood with the masses. In early times, in Illinois, almost every citizen made hunting his main business in the fall, by which he added considerable to the support of himself and family. Peltries and furs were the staple articles of the country, and were as current and as good as bank paper is at this time.

By a kind of public opinion, dear-skins which had the hair shaved off, made a currency at three pounds to the dollar. Books kept, and notes made in this manner, were the common practice of the people, which answered for the standard of business; as the present age has made the coin of the United States the measure of value.

The meat of the chase was generally preserved, and supported the families. There is no flesh better than a fat bear, and almost equal is the venison in the fall.

In 1800, and many years thereafter, game, deer, bear, and elk were plenty in Illinois, and particularly the deer. The northern Indians did not hunt much around the white settlements, and the Kaskaskia Indians were afraid to go far out to hunt. By these means, the wild animals for ages were unmolested in Southern Illinois, and they grew in great numbers. The raccoons and musk-rats were also numerous. It is said the Indians called Kaskaskia River, Raccoon River, for the number of these animals raised on it.

In the swamps of the rivers were great numbers of musk-rats. Their fur, as well as the raccoons, was in great demand with the merchants. These animals, the raccoon and the musk-rat, are measurably hunted out, until there are only a few of them in the State at this day. Beavers and otters were also found in Illinois in the above period, but were not plenty in "My Times," and none at this day. Elks were not common in Illinois since my residence in the country. I was one of a hunting-party


that wounded an elk, and we tracked it by the blood for miles, hut did not get it. It was said that buffalos ranged toward the head of Big Muddy River since we settled in Illinois; but I never saw any of them.

Wild fowls in pioneer times were very numerous. In the fall and spring, great numbers flew over us north and south. The Mississippi, and the low lands near it, were on their route north and south; and at times the air was almost darkened with them. The swans often flew high in the air, and in large gangs. The notes of their music, sung on their passage, were noble and majestic. But almost all these fowls, like the animals of the chase, cease to exist in Illinois, and we see very few of them at this day in their migrations. The fowls generally fly in order, and assume the form something like the letter V, point foremost. One alone is generally in front, and the two lines are extended back from the foremost patriarch of the flock.

The game, the fowls, Indians, and pioneers all seem to sink below the horizon about the same time, and leave the scenes of their existence, pleasures, and sports for another generation.

Some deer-hunters make their approach to a gang of deer in the open prairie with such adroitness and cunning, that they kill one of the flock. Sometimes the hunter crawls in the open prairie on the ground in the grass, and when the deer look around, he is motionless until they put their heads down to feed again; then he creeps on again. At times the hunter provides a green bush which he holds in front of him as he advances to the game.

In my early days, I possessed a fever for hunting as well as the other pioneers, and hunted considerable; but never was a good hunter. I had two younger brothers, James and Robert, who were excellent hunters, but I think their exposure and hardships in the chase hastened them to their graves. They are both dead.

On many occasions, the hunters shoot from the backs of their horses, and what is strange, that the ponies will stand as motionless, and not breathe, as a marble statue, when the hunter is shooting from their backs. The sagacity of the horse is wonderful — and to hold his breath on these occasions shows much of it.

The food for wild animals, in the early settlement of the country, was grown in Illinois in the greatest abundance. The vegetation in summer was luxuriant and exceedingly nutritious. In the winter, the animals were surrounded with "canebrakes" in all the southern section of Illinois, and the sandy margins of the rivers furnished rushes for food. The lowlands of the streams in those olden days supplied the animals, wild and domestic, with good pasturage all winter.


Chapter XVIII.

Agriculture and Commerce in the Pioneer Times of Illinois. — Not Much Agriculture and Commerce at the Commencement of the Present Century. — Commenced to Sow Fall Wheat at the New Design. — Sickles. — No Cradles, No Horse-Reapers, No charge for Reaping. — French Raised Spring Wheat. — A Dollar a Bushel for Wheat. — Cut Prairie Grass for Hay. — French Barns. — Produce to New Orleans. — Lead. — Stock. — Indian Goods. — All Commerce by Water. — No Land Carriage, No Roads. — Railroads Add Much to Commerce.

AT the commencement of the present century, agriculture and commerce in Illinois did not nourish to any great extent. The fine soil of Illinois was mostly in the possession of the aborigines, and the white population amounted to only a few thousand souls. About one-half of these few inhabitants made their living by the chase, couriers du bois, and voyaging. Under these circumstances, agriculture and commerce were limited at this period. The great elements of prosperity increased as the population expanded. The farmers commenced to sow fall wheat, and sell it to the merchants. The inhabitants of the New Design gave the first impulse to the growth of fall wheat, and considerable quantities, were sold from this settlement.

At that day, the sickles, or reap-hooks, were the only implement used to cut the wheat. There were no cradles in the country to cut the small grain, and the late improvements made their appearance, to harvest the grain, fifty years afterward. Reaping with a sickle was a severe labor. Wheat at that day sold for a dollar per bushel.

Mowing the prairie grass was, as well as reaping wheat, a hot, hard labor; but a short distance from the farms, in the prairie, or in the timber in places, good grass was selected and mowed. In this branch of agriculture I always made a hand to mow the prairie grass as well as to reap wheat.

The Americans, at that day, generally stacked their hay and wheat out, but the French had barns in which they housed their wheat and hay. The French barns were made of large cedar posts, put in the ground some two feet, and set apart four or five feet — the space between the posts was filled up with puncheons put in grooves in the posts, and the whole covered with a thatched roof.

It was a great trouble in olden times to thresh and clean the wheat. The Americans used horses at times to tread it out. About the hardest work I ever performed was winnowing the wheat with a sheet.

Considerable quantities of corn were shipped from Illinois in


flat-boats to New Orleans before the purchase of Louisiana. It was an uncertain market, and a more uncertain navigation of the river. Some considerable stock, cattle, and hogs were raised for the market. Some were shipped to New Orleans, and considerable live stock to the lead mines in Louisiana. The commerce on the river and the Indian trade consumed of the small surplus products of the farms.

Irish potatoes were raised in abundance in pioneer times in Illinois, and the crops scarcely ever failed. Only small quantities of cheese or butter were manufactured — scarcely enough for home consumption.

The French scarcely ever troubled themselves with milking cows; but turned the calves out with the other cattle, and made little or no butter. They scarcely ever used a churn, a loom, or a wheel. At this early day, both the French and Americans possessed large apple orchards in proportion to the number of people in the country. The French also cultivated considerable orchards of pears, but the peach-tree was almost entirely neglected. In after days, peaches, apricots, and other fruit, were raised in abundance. This is an excellent climate for the above fruit.

The greater portion of the merchants made the Indian trade their main object. The furs and peltries were articles in great demand, and were generally shipped to Mackinaw, Philadelphia, and New Orleans. Lead, from the mines west of the Mississippi, formed an element of some value in the pioneer commerce.

The French horses, known as "French Ponies ," were sold in great numbers to the Indians. Guns, powder, lead, and all Indian goods, blankets, blue strouding, and calico-shirts, made up, formed large items in the commerce of the day — as the Indians were much more numerous than the whites.

The whole commercial business of the country was carried on by means of the navigable streams intersecting the valleys of the West in almost every direction.

The village of St. Louis, Missouri, at the commencement of the present century, had only small Indian trails leading to it. All the commerce and transportation business was performed by water.

Of recent date, the railroad system has unfolded a new era to the country, and has advanced the nation at least half a century in its former progress. Time and distance are almost annihilated, and the extremes of: the country brought almost in contact.


Chapter XIX.

Early Education in Illinois. — The Author's First Acquaintance with the Arithmetic. — At a Common School in the Winter. — Studies Astronomy. — Studies Surveying and Navigation. — Traits of Character Developed.

BEFORE any common school was established in the settlement, where my father resided, I mounted a horse nearly every evening during a winter, and rode about a mile and a-half to the residence of James Hughes, to study under his guidance the arithmetic. Mr. Hughes, although he was raised in the backwoods, and was filled with fun and frolic, was a man of strong mind and a benevolent heart. He took great pleasure in teaching me the arithmetic, and during this winter I studied the most important principles contained in the treatise. We had not the least idea when a school would be established in the neighborhood; and I was advancing in years, so that it was a matter of necessity to study with Mr. Hughes. This was the first step I took towards an education since we immigrated to Illinois. I attended to my ordinary business on the farm during the day, and in the evenings, after the stock was fed, I studied the arithmetic with Mr. Hughes. In a few years after, schools were established in most of the new colonies.

In the New Design, Robert Lemen, an aged and respectable pioneer of Illinois, taught a school. Others were opened in Goshen settlement, and other colonies.

About the year 1805, a small school was formed in the settlement where my father resided. I was a scholar at this humble institution during part of the winters, and the wet days we could not work on the farm, for one or two years, while we remained in the settlement. At times, the school was not kept up for the want of teachers. The scarcity of school-books was also a great inconvenience to the scholar.

As soon as I commenced the study of the arithmetic with Mr. Hughes, I commenced also an ambition and a small enthusiasm for education generally. This disposition induced me to study and read almost every book I could obtain. It must be recollected at that day in Illinois, not a man in the country, professional, or otherwise, had any collection of books that could acquire the name of library. There were some books scattered through the country, but they were not plenty. Although my father was a reading man, and possessed a strong mind, yet as far as I recollect, he brought to the country with him no books, except the Bible. Many of the immigrants acted in the same manner as to books.


One exception I recollect was: that John Fulton, who settled in the vicinity of my father, brought with him Rollin's Ancient History. My father borrowed it, and I read it day and night at the times I spared from labor. This was the first history I had ever seen, and it gave me a new field of mental existence. I made arrangements with my father to go all one winter to school. I had raised a colt he gave me, and I gave it to a man to work in my place on the farm while I attended school. At this school I studied reading, writing, and the arithmetic. I revised my studies of the arithmetic I had commenced with Mr. Hughes. It was my energy and ambition more, I presume, than my capacity; but I learned rapidly — so my teachers always reported.

At that day, neither the grammar, geography, nor books of science ever appeared in the schools. And no branch of the mathematics was taught except the arithmetic. The custom of that day was also, to study the lessons aloud. Each one in the school read out at the top of his voice, if it suited the convenience of the scholar. This unwise habit is changed at this day.

My father purchased a few books, and among them was a treatise on geography. This was a good work in four volumes, and presented a tolerably good geography of the inhabited globe. In this work was also contained a sketch of astronomy, and particularly the solar system. This study astonished and surprised me. It was incomprehensible to me, how it was possible that the knowledge of the heavenly bodies could be obtained. I reflected on this science with all my humble abilities, and became well instructed in it; so far as that short sketch afforded me the means. My father understood the general principles of astronomy tolerably well, and instructed me considerably in addition to the treatise mentioned above.

In the school near my father's, the teacher was unable to instruct any of his students in the higher branches of the mathematics, or the sciences, and I made arrangements, with the consent of my father, that I should attend during the winter of 1806 and 1807, a good school, taught by a competent teacher. This school was situated a few miles north-east of the present city of Belleville, on the land of the present Mr. Schreader. I have often examined, with deep feeling, the tumuli of earth where this school-house once stood. I revere and respect the site with the same feeling as the Jews in ancient times did the City of Jerusalem.

At this seminary I studied land-surveying and navigation. I attended also to reading, spelling, and writing. I became well conversant in the general principles of the mathematics, and particularly in the science of land-surveying. My father procured me a surveyor's compass, and I learned both the theory


and practice of surveying. My compass and mathematical books I retain to this day. I studied various branches of mathematics, and the sciences, until I calculated an almanac, but it was never printed. At that day, I never saw a printing office. At this school where I learned surveying, I studied also book-keeping, of which I thought very little. My writing in this study improved my penmanship, but I think not much my knowledge.

In my youth, when I was quite young, I surveyed a considerable amount of private lands, and gave tolerable satisfaction, so far as I understood at the time. During these years of my humble life, the traits of my character commenced to develop themselves. It is almost impossible for any one to deliberate his own character; but he may, I presume, give some of the general outlines, without being guilty of either egotism or folly.

My first and strongest impulses and traits of character were, in my opinion, ambition and energy. Since my earliest recollection it gave me great pain, and in fact real misery, to be defeated in any enterprise I undertook. This was the case in my tender years, as well as in mature age. Ambition was a passion born with me, to the extent of my humble abilities. Energy was also my company during life. I believe a stationary and idle life would have made me unhappy and would have shortened my days. Another trait was also born with me: that was an extra and morbid degree of diffidence. This defect of organization has given me great pain and trouble through life. I happened to possess a corresponding degree of savage obstinacy, pertinacity, and self-will to persevere onward, or otherwise this bashfulness and diffidence would have been my ruin. I imply not that this bashfulness had any affinity to modesty, of which I pretend to possess no uncommon share. Thus far my readers will permit me, I hope, to speak of myself. I know it is dangerous, and a person, when he speaks of himself, is liable to say too much on the favorable side.

Nature and education are united in forming human character. Neither can accomplish much without the other. Education without a proper subject to act on would be futile; and strong natural parts without education would be almost as useless. All the, impressions which the mind receives from the surrounding circumstances, I embrace in the general term of education. And in this view of the subject, education makes lasting impressions on the mind and forms the character, as heretofore stated in this work.

My situation, being raised in the backwoods, has impressed me with a pioneer character that has remained with me more or less during life, and for which I am truly thankful. Circumstances compelled me to rely on my own resources, which gave


me self-reliance, and a goodly degree of self-sufficiency, thinking I was compelled to succeed in almost any emergency. Energy and activity were also forced on me by the same circumstances that they seemed to be born with me; and therefore attended me without effort.

With these traits of character, together with an unbounded ambition — much diffidence and awkwardness — nature and my age raised me an obscure boy, a small distance above the horizon, and forced me to act in this wide world

Chapter XX.

The Increase of Population and the Extension of the Settlements in Illinois from 1805 to 1809, the Time of the Formation of Illinois Territory. — The Monks of La Trappe. — Shawneetown Increased.

THE whole country on the margin of the Mississippi, Ohio, and Wabash Rivers, from the site where Alton now stands to Vincennes, commenced to improve. Within the present limits of Gallatin, Johnson, and Union Counties, small colonies were formed. The Simpson, Stokes, and many other settlements, were established in this section of the country, while the country was under the jurisdiction of Indiana Territory. Some mills were erected on the Little Wabash River, near its mouth; and about this time the town of New Haven commenced near these mills. A talented and energetic merchant, then of Shawneetown, laid out New Haven, and erected a fine flour-mill in the vicinity.

The settlements around the Ohio Saline, in Gallatin County, increased considerably, and the business at the salt works was carried on with much prosperity and success. These settlements, around the margins of these large rivers, extended only a few miles in the interior; and within was a wilderness.

The families of Jourdons, and connections, made a location in 1808, east of Big Muddy River, not far from the place where the old Fort Massacre trace crossed the stream.

Colonies were formed some years before 1809, on Mary's River and Plumb Creek, in Randolph County, and extended up the east side of the Kaskaskia River, in narrow strips, to the upper extremity of the Horse Prairie, and east of Silver Creek, in St. Clair County. On, Sugar and Shoal Creeks, some settlements were formed during this period. The highest locations on Shoal Creek were about the present Greenville; and the settlements on Silver Creek extended up to the vicinity of the present Highland Town, in Madison County.

During this period, colonies were extended from the vicinity of the present towns of Troy and Edwardsville to the forks of


Wood River, which was the upper settlement in the country at this early period. Andey Dunegan resided then, solitary and alone, on the site which Alton now occupies. These were the frontier settlements during the war of 1812, and around which the United States Rangers guarded the inhabitants.

Some of the Bird family, who had previously resided in Missouri, west of Cape Girardeau, sold out their interest in the premises and settled on the site of the present city of Cairo, in 1805. The settlements extended up the Wabash River, with wide gaps between them, as high as Vincennes — but most of the inhabitants left these upper settlements during the war of 1812.

The French colonies were also extended before 1809; and the villages called "the French Village," situated in the American Bottom, on the present road from Belleville to St. Louis, and the Quentine Village, near the Great Mound, on Cahokia Creek, were formed. The French settlements at Peoria and Prairie du Chien were stationary.

The colonies of the Creoles, on the Big Island, in the Mississippi, above St. Louis, increased but never prospered much.

In the year 1809, the Monks of La Trappe made a settlement in the American Bottom, near the Great Mound, and remained there for several years. This colony was located near the county line, between St. Clair and Madison Counties, and they made there considerable improvements. They introduced into the country a good breed of stock; and were, many of them, excellent mechanics. The monks introduced the first Jack into the country; but there was such inveterate prejudice, at that day, against mules, that no one bred from the Jack.

At the place they located it was near large lakes, and they suffered bad health. Two priests and several lay members died here, and they abandoned the country in the year 1812.

This order of religionists, La Trappe, were very rigid and severe in their rules and discipline. It is an ancient order, commencing in France in the year 1140, and revived in 1664, by Abbey Ranee. This devotee was a crazy fanatic, and enjoined on the monastery perpetual silence. A stone floor was their beds, bread and water their food — and every day they dug part of their graves. I saw many of the order, at their monastery in the American Bottom, who refused to speak, but made signs, pointing to the place to obtain information. Many whom, I saw were stout, robust men, badly clothed, but fat and hearty.

These monks came to the United States in 1804, and first settled in Pennsylvania, at Conewango Creek — then in Kentucky — then in the Flourisant Village, in St. Louis County, Missouri; and then came to Illinois. They always seemed to me to be discontented and unhappy. The leader of the fratenity, the Rev. Pere Urban, was considered a man of talents and true piety. I have often seen him reading in a book on


horse-back. This monastery was an order of the Cistercian Monks; and with all their rigor and severity, they had attached to them many followers.

It is a singular trait in the human character, that the most strange and most superstitious institutions of religion will secure to them proselytes who will suffer even martyrdom for a cause which they cannot understand.

In all religions, it is a principle to chasten "the carnal man," as it is called by some, so that the grossest passions, and the most degraded impulses of the animal man, will not be permitted to run riot, and ruin the higher and more intellectual sentiments and impulses of cultivated humanity; but these monks seemed determined to destroy the animality altogether in man, to prevent him from committing sin. As well might a physician kill his patient to cure him. It is extremely difficult to educate the human family in such manner as to pursue the exact line of right, in the sight of Heaven, between the two extremes of the low, baser passions of man, and the celestial and etherial elevation of the human intellect.

During this period, Shawneetown, on the Ohio River, commenced to grow, and gave evidence then of becoming a large commercial town. Shawneetown made its first appearance in the years 1805 and 1806, and increased considerably for sometime. Great fleets of keel boats concentrated at this point, engaged in the salt, and other traffic, and diffused life and energy to the new colonies.

About the year 1804, La Bauissier, a Frenchman, located on the Ohio River; he fished, traded with the Indians, and kept a ferry. E. Ensminger settled there about the same time, and was deputy-sheriff of Randolph County in 1809. Davenport, Wilson, Ellis, Hubbard, and others, located here a few years after.

Congress in 1810, and also in 1814, caused to be surveyed out two sections of land in lots, and sold many of them. After the sale a general jollification was enjoyed, and most of the old log-cabins in the town were burnt, so that new houses, larger, and built of better materials, would occupy the places of the squatter houses. The river, for several years, did not inundate the town, and everything seemed to prosper and advance the growth of the place — it soon contained a population of fifteen hundred inhabitants or more. The Indians were removed from the country near Shawneetown in 1811, and the immigrants flocked to the country in great numbers.

At the first settlement of Shawneetown, a number of extraordinary and highly gifted immigrants settled in it, and gave it a high standing and character throughout the country. Many of these pioneers reached, in after days, a high standing and fame in the public mind. Among many others, Isaac White,


John Marshall, Moses M. Railings, Leonard White, Willis Hargrove, Henry Eddy, John McLean, Thomas C. Brown, A. F. Hubbard, Moses M. Street, John Lane, Seth Guard, and many more.

In 1805, we computed the population of Illinois to be about five thousand souls; and in 1810, the census taken then returns 12,284 inhabitants in the territory of Illinois.

Chapter XXI.

Sketches of the Author. — Camp-meeting. — The Jerks. — Discipline of the Militia. — The Fourth of July.

IN the spring of the year 1807, my father purchased a plantation in the Goshen settlement, situated at the foot of the Mississippi Bluff, three or four miles south-west of Edwardsville; and there part of the family made a crop of corn before the rest moved up. I had with me my books and compass, and studied the mathematics with care and attention at intervals, when I was not at work on the farm. I was called on to do jobs of surveying, which I performed tolerably well, as all parties concluded.

When my father arrived in Goshen, it was the most beautiful country that I ever saw. It had been settled only a few years, and the freshness and beauty of nature reigned over it to give it the sweetest charms. I have spent hours on the bluff, ranging my view up and down the American Bottom, as far as the eye could extend. The ledge of rocks at the present city of Alton, and the rocks near Cahokia, limited our view north and south; and all the intermediate country extended before us. The prairie and timber were distinctly marked, and the Mississippi seen in places. As I grew up, I became more and more energetic, and I could not remain inactive with the least satisfaction. I was constantly in motion, except when asleep or at my studies. I attended at the house-raisings and other gatherings of the people. No horse-race, or Fourth of July frolic escaped me. Yet, with all this glow of spirits and activity, I never tasted a drop of liquor. The decision not to drink I made irrevocable.

The first camp-meeting that was ever held in Illinois was commenced on the premises of Mr. Good, about three miles south of the present Edwardsville. This meeting convened in the spring of 1807, and I attended it. At the meeting, many persons were curiously exercised by the "jerks," as it was called. It seemed an involuntary exercise, and made the victims sometimes dance and leap until they were entirely exhausted, and would fall down helpless on the ground. When they were in


these furious motions, the parties would generally shout and cry aloud on the Lord. It was supposed to be contagious by sympathy. These jerks remained with the people for many years, but have long since disappeared. The clergy encouraged it for many years, but at last they turned a deaf ear to it, and it ceased among the people. It seemed to me the parties became much excited, and got into a frenzied state of mind, so that they knew not what they did.

For the first time, I mustered in the spring of 1807, in Cahokia. It was a general muster for the county of St. Clair; and men, women, and many children, attended it. In those days, females appeared at these gatherings in great numbers: they rode on horseback, and often carried their children for many miles to these places of public resort. At this muster, a troop of cavalry was training; and they and the infantry were firing, for amusement, blank cartrages at each other. A company of French, in Cahokia, by accident, or otherwise, fired leaden shot into the cavalry company, and wounded many of the men and horses. At that day, a bad state of feeling existed between the French and Americans, and the regiment was divided, so that the two races mustered apart from each other at the next training.

The country, at that day, was surrounded with Indians who were not friendly to the approach of the Americans, and it was necessary that the people should keep up a strict military organization for defense. By this training and military discipline, the whole male population of Illinois made experienced soldiers, to defend themselves in the war of 1812, without any difficulty whatever.

The celebration of the Fourth of July was frequently, in these early times, made by horse-races and other sports, to demonstrate the joy of the people. I attended two celebrations of the Fourth at horse-races — one in 1807, at a race in the American Bottom, a mile east of the Sugar Loaf; and the other, the next year, on the prairie, in the American Bottom, north-west, and near the residence of the late Samuel Judy.

At that day, and previously, I never saw in Illinois any regular celebration of the Fourth of July by dinners, speeches, and the like. I had often read the Declaration of Independence of 1776, and admired it as being the greatest achievement of human intellect, and on the greatest occasion; but I had never heard it read at a Fourth of July celebration until in Knoxville, Tennessee, on the Fourth of July, 1812. The celebration in Knoxville was one of the most enthusiastic meetings I ever witnessed: the war against England had just been declared, and the patriotic citizens of Tennessee were red hot and flaming to fight the enemy. Judge Scott, of Knoxville, a splendid orator, read the declaration, and made a speech that roused to action


every spark of Tennessee patriotism. He painted, in glowing colors, the scalps of men, women, and children, for which the British Government paid gold, at Detroit and other places, in the Revolution. England, at that dinner, had no friends at all.

Chapter XXII.

Early Government of Illinois. — In 1800, Down to 1809, Illinois Formed a Part of Indiana Territory. — Establishment of St. Clair and Randolph Counties. — Judges of the Court. — Jurisdiction of Courts and Justices of the Peace. — First Lawyers. — Election in 1802. — Assembly Convened at Vincennes to Suggest Measures. — Contrast in the Travel to Vincennes in 1802 on Horseback, and in 1855 by Railroad.

ILLINOIS, from 1800 to 1809, made a part of the Indiana Territory, and was, during that period, under the laws and jurisdiction of that territory.

When we arrived in Illinois in 1800, there were only two counties, St. Clair and Randolph, including the Illinois section of Indiana. Governor St. Clair and Judges organized the county of St. Clair in the year 1790, when he was Governor and Illinois formed a part of the great North-Western Territory. The eastern line of the county commenced on the Illinois River, at the mouth of the Mackinaw Creek, some distance below Peoria, and run a direct course to the Ohio River, near the old Fort Massacre, and thence down the Ohio to the mouth, and up the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers to the beginning. This county embraced at that day all the settlements in Illinois, and ten times more territory than they occupied. In the year 1795, Randolph County was formed, which was taken off the southern section of St. Clair, and the line dividing the counties ran nearly east and west through the wilderness country, between Prairie du Rocher and the New Design colony. The county seats of these two counties were at Kaskaskia and Cahokia. A court of common pleas and quarter session were organized and held in each county seat four times in each year. The Judges of these courts were sound headed and respectable men, who had no pretention to law-learning; but were about similar to the best of our Justices of the Peace at this day. Robert Morrison, Esq., was the Clerk of the Court in Randolph County and John Hay, Esq., in St. Clair. At times, Shadrach Bond, James Lemen, William Whiteside, James Piggot, Jean F. Perry, Nicholas Jarrot, George Atchison, and many other similar good men, composed the Judges of the court of St. Clair County; and John Edgar, William Morrison, N. Hull, Robert Reynolds (my father), John Beaird, and others, were at


times Judges of the courts in Randolph County. These Judges were appointed by the Governor of the territory, and held their offices during his pleasure. The courts had similar jurisdiction with our present Circuit Courts. They also regulated the public business of the county. These Judges acted, also, as Justices of the Peace as well as Judges of the court of common pleas. Also, Justices of the Peace were appointed, whose jurisdiction in civil suits was limited to twenty dollars. It required three Judges to constitute a quorum, but more might sit on the bench. These two counties and the administration of the law remained in this condition until the year 1812, when other counties were established.

In 1803, I heard speeches made in court by lawyers Haggin and Darnielle, in Kaskaskia, which was the first "pleading," as it was then called, I ever heard. These two lawyers and John Rice Jones, were the only attorneys in Illinois when we arrived in the country. Soon after, when Louisiana was ceded to the United States, more lawyers appeared in the country.

After we settled in the country, the first election for members of a convention was held in December, 1802, in Kaskaskia, and Robert Morrison, Pierre Menard, and my father were elected for Randolph County, and Jean F. Perry, Shadrach Bond, and John Moredock, for St. Clair County. This assembly convened in the winter at Vincennes, and was not for legislation entirely, but to advise with Governor Harrison on the government of the territory, and the second grade of territorial government.

The country between Kaskaskia and Vincennes was then a wilderness, and I recollect well hearing my father relate the difficulties the members had in swimming the streams in the wilderness, and their want of food for themselves and horses.

At this day, seven hours of pleasant travel in the cars on the railroad, from St. Louis, will land the traveller in Vincennes. What a contrast.

Chapter XXIII.

My Journey to the College in Tennessee. — A Letter from Tennessee decides me for the College. — Preparations. — Diffidence.

ALTHOUGH I had reached my twentieth year, yet I had not reflected or decided in what manner I would make a living. One thing was most certain: that I relied on myself for a support. I knew my father had not the means to assist me to any great extent, but it never cost me a moment's reflection, as I was satisfied in my own ability to make a living. I had never engaged in anything great or important in my humble course of life, and to pursue it on in an even tenor did not require much talent or capacity.


In the forepart of the winter of 1809, my uncle, John Reynolds, of Knox County, Tennessee, wrote my father a letter, suggesting the propriety of sending me to Tennessee to college. This letter found me as above stated, in an unsettled condition, ready for a college, a horse-race, or a tour to the Rocky Mountains, as the latter was sometimes spoken of.

It is strange what a small circumstance does often decide the destiny of a person for life. This suggestion of my uncle caused me to abandon my agricultural pursuits, and embrace another entire different profession. I had not the least intention, and it was not hinted at the time to me, that I was to study law if I ever became qualified. I considered it right, at all events, to receive education, no matter what business I might afterward pursue.

If it had not been for my uncle, I would have remained at home, and have pursued, I presume, agriculture for a livelihood. I would not have remained idle, but forced my way to the uttermost of my capacity in some enterprise.

My mother disliked me to leave home, and for her and her wishes I entertained the most profound respect. But to satisfy me she consented, and then all was bustle at home getting me ready for college.

As the occasion occurred to test my diffidence, it increased; so that my travel to Tennessee, and my appearance at college haunted me in my slumbers. But when I commenced an enterprise, let it be education, the practice of law, or any pursuit of any description, my disposition was and is such that I would suffer martyrdom before I would abandon it while there was a gleam of hope left. With these traits of character, I had many trials and conflicts of feelings to encounter in the progress of my collegiate education in Tennessee, and, also, throughout my whole life.

It must be recollected, that in Illinois I was raised in the extreme backwoods, without ever being in any society except the wildest. At that day, to my recollection, I never saw a carpet, a papered wall, or a Windsor chair. Where I associated, none of these articles existed. I think, before I was twenty years old, I never lived in a shingled-roof house, or one that had glass windows in it. My father was about the most wealthy farmer in the neighborhood; but fine houses were not then in the country, anywhere out of the villages, and not many in them.

The society, near Knoxville, then the seat of the State Government, was polished and fashionable. Under these circumstances, what anguish of feelings I was bound to suffer. I had crossed the Rubicon, and death or success was my motto. It may be considered pride or vanity in me; but I had much self-reliance. I mostly thought I was equal to the emergency,


and although this confidence did not destroy my diffidence, yet it was the main lever that urged me on. I was a singular spectacle, when I started in 1809 to college; I looked more like a trapper going to the Rocky Mountains, than a student to college. I was well educated in the arts and mysteries of horse and foot-racing, shooting-matches, and all other wild sports of the backwoods, but had not studied the polish of the ballroom, and was sorely beset with diffidence, awkwardness, and poverty.

My mother and female friends commenced to fix me up for college. They spun and wove from the raw material of wool, cotton, and flax, my clothing. At that day, broadcloth was not much seen in the country; at least it was not with me. These clothes were made up without tailors, and did not fit; so that I was placed in fashionable and polished society in Tennessee in a most ludicrous position. This appearance, together with my inherent bashfulness, gave me much pain and mortfication. I wore a cream-colored hat, made out of the fur of the prairie wolf, which also made rather a grotesque appearance. My parents did for me the best in their power, and did it with the most kind and affectionate feelings, for which in all the ups and downs in my life, I turn back to them with the most profound feelings of respect and gratitude. It seemed to me they would almost give up their lives at any time for my welfare.

When I left home my feelings were aroused into great intensity; and when I turned my head back leaving home, and saw my mother shedding tears, I bitterly condemned the college; but honor and obstinacy propelled me onward, if I had died on my horse. John Green, an excellent young man, afterwards a rather conspicuous character in Greene County, Ill., travelled with me to the lower part of Kentucky, and when we separated I was miserable. Together we did tolerably well; but as Burns the poet sings in his Highland Mary, "our parting was fu' tender."

Many days I travelled the whole day without eating or feeding my horse. I was so diffident and pioneer-like to appear in a fashionable hotel, that I suffered for the want of food. It is strange in the same proportion as diffidence appeared on me, the opposite traits of character were propelling me onward; so that I would have appeared in Tennessee, as I had commenced the enterprise, if I had been forced to crawl there on my hands and feet.

Between Kaskaskia and the Ohio River was mostly a wilderness. We crossed the Ohio at Ford's Ferry, and passed Hopkinsville, Gallatin, in Tennessee, and at last I approached the Cumberland Mountains. It was nine years since I had crossed them, and I had forgotten them considerably. Being so long in Illinois, in which there are no mountains, the sight of them was magnificent and sublime. I took great pleasure in viewing


these great and grand works of creation, and frequently loitered behind my company gazing on the scenery.

At last I reached the residence of my uncle, in Knox County, Tennessee, and found him and his amiable wife enjoying rural life, in that happy medium between the extremes of wealth and poverty, that is the most conducive to happiness. They received me with open arms, as if I had been their only son. It is to this family that I have reason to look, next to my parents, or even more, for my advancement in life. These relatives possessed and exerted a kindness for me, that time makes it more indelible on my heart. They moved in a respectable circle of society, and knew exactly what to say and do for me. They placed me in that condition in which it was proper for me to act in my situation.

My wardrobe was re-organized; and my hat, which was made in Illinois out of the fur of a prairie-wolf, was exchanged for a fashionable beaver.

It is almost impossible for one to cast off the wilderness-manners and habits of twenty years' growth, and assume in a short time the polish and fashion of refined society.

Another scene now presented itself, which I disliked extremely. But it was one like death, that could not be avoided. It was to introduce me to the preceptor of the college and the students. This scene was not at a horse-race or a shooting match, and I felt rather disagreeable in the operation. Many young men told me afterwards, when we became familiar, that they had no idea at first that I ever could become a scholar.

Chapter XXIV.

My First Year at College. — The Preceptor. — The Books I Read.

THE preceptor of this college was an accomplished scholar, the Rev. Divine, Isaac Anderson, whose learning and piety were known and appreciated far and near. Nature bestowed on him a great strength and compass of mind, and it might be said of him, like Cardinal Wolsey, "from his cradle, he was a scholar," "a ripe, and good one." He is yet alive, and is the patriarch of learning in East Tennessee. He is not only at the head of an institution of learning in East Tennessee, but he also stands deservedly at the head of the Christian ministry in his section of the country.

This gentleman instructed a class of young men, in his college, and preached to his congregation every Sabbath.

He kindly received me into his seminary, and was to me a warm friend and benefactor.

This institution of learning was situated in a retired valley, where neither temptation nor vice made their appearance.


It was six miles north-east of Knoxville, and near the parson's house. A large spring flowed out from the rocks near it, and the whole scenery around was charming, innocent, and rural. The building of the institution was comfortable and "unpretending." Wealth in it or about it made no display to deaden or distract the vigor of the intellect. The Latin grammar was the first book put into my hands, and it was my decided companion for several weeks and months, so that we scarcely ever were apart, only on occasions of sleep and meals. I had no acquaintances at the college or country. I was diffident — had no means to make a display, and had no inclination. I knew I was rising into years and I must act. I commenced to know and appreciate a character and standing. All these things conspiring, made me exert every latent and dormant intellect and energy that I possessed. I made hasty strides in the Latin language, that was noticed by the college; but I knew not myself my exact progress, as well as others did. The first small Latin book I read after the grammar was, I think, Corderi. I soon came to Selecta Profanis. The others I had been studying was a kind of Englished Latin. This book was a trouble. My mind had not been disciplined entirely to study in Illinois, and I had to force it into the harness of absolute application. I had commenced the enterprise, and my readers know my motto was success or an ignominious grave. It was something like taking a colt off the prairie-grass and entering him in a race-course without keeping or training. It required much exertion to succeed. Caesar's Commentaries on his Gallic wars was studied by me, and much admired. Ovid's Metamorphosis was also read attentively. I did not much like this author, although he has considerable genius in changing girls into trees, and the like. I then studied the works of Virgil, and greatly admired them. His pastorals are innocent, and as the ladies would say, "sweet." His Georgics are good. Many of the best principles of agriculture are there laid down. He is not so wrong in stating that bees will generate in the pounded carcass of a young heifer. But it was the AEnead that I so much admired. In this work were philosophy, religion, and many great principles combined. The descent of AEnead into the dreary abode of the spirits, called Averna, shows the notions of the ancients in the future state. I remarked, particularly in in the works of Virgil, that he was so diffident that he would not enter Rome in daylight, for fear of the gaze of the people. He came into the city in the night. I discovered that others had been incommoded with this disease as well as myself. I consider the work of Virgil shows, besides great genius in the author, science and philosophy in the work. The next author placed in my hands was Horace. I read his Satires, much of his poetry, and his art of poetry. This writer was to


me not so interesting as Virgil. Horace had perhaps more strength of mind, and an intellect more pointed than Virgil, but there was a beauty and a flowing elegance with the author of the Aenead, that I did not preceive in the other. The last Latin author I read at school was Cicero. His orations were considered at the college the ne plus ultra of human excellence, and not so badly judged, in my opinion. I studied with care and attention the Orations of Cicero, and admired them with the warm enthusiasm of a school-boy. It requires a good Latin scholar to understand the speeches of this celebrated orator, and I never read them with so much pleasure as I did the AEnead of Virgil. When I was at the college, hearing the first words of any line of the first books of the AEnead, I could repeat the rest of the line. The above are the principal Latin authors I studied at the college, but I looked over Sallust and many other Latin writers. But in my opinion, Cicero was, taking him in all things, the greatest literary man Rome ever produced; and it is doubtful, if modern times ever could boast of a superior man. Some writers say, Julius Caesar was the most accomplished scholar and man the world ever saw; but in my opinion, he fell behind Cicero in not only eloquence but science and literature. The writings of Cicero will stand transcendent in the minds of all intelligent men, while eloquence and learning are respected on the globe. For native, pure, and pathetic eloquence, I believe the great American orator, Henry Clay, was superior to Cicero; but he appeared far behind the noble Roman in science and literature. It must be recollected, that the cotemporaries of Henry Clay, besides the American feeling, enjoyed the pleasure of witnessing the grand and majestic bursts of eloquence from the lips of the American, while the efforts of the Roman are preserved only on paper. Eloquence cannot be confined and transmitted in writing in those glowing, beaming, and overwhelming torrents that flow from the lips of the orator himself.

At this college it was the custom to read compositions on one Saturday, and the next, to deliver orations. This rule is a good one, but the performance of it was to me a great trial, particularly the speaking on Saturdays. All the two weeks previous, and in fact all the weeks, this awful day was looked Upon by me with deep and intense feeling. Writing the composition was a closet performance, be it good or bad, that any one could do, according to his will and capacity; but the reading of it to the teacher was to me very painful. His gentle and kind criticism on the pieces was more to sooth my perturbed spirit than otherwise. The orations were committed to memory, and spoken to a full house of the students, and others, with the venerable and learned preceptor presiding, with that noble dignity which seems to be the birthright of the Rev. Isaac Anderson.


I retain the impressions of that scene vividly on my mind to this day, of my first attempts to deliver orations, which I had committed to memory. The teacher presided, and the house full of students, and others, more to witness my debut than any other cause. I knew it, and the more I thought of the scene, the more I disliked it. I could not reason the diffidence off. Or I could not forget it, or shift it off, but I must bear it. This is no caricature, or exaggerated story, of my first appearance in this scene. When I commenced, I trembled from head to foot, my voice faltered and was strange to my own ears. I jumbled over sentences and paragraphs in the speech. Involuntarily and unconsciously I leaned on a table near me, until my person made an angle of forty-five degrees with the floor. To see the crowd gazing on me, and myself making such a caricature of a speech, was extremely disagreeable.

At this college was organized a debating society, that aided the students much in their elocution as well as mental researches. I was persuaded to join, and committed to memory my addresses. The teacher generally presided, and took occasion often to commend my efforts, more to encourage me than any merit my speeches possessed. Also, at this college, at the close of each session of five months, an "exhibition," as it was called, was held. A large audience attended; and the scholars not only exhibited their studies before the congregation, but also performed plays, something similar to a theatre. The teachers from all the surrounding institutions were invited, and examined the scholars in their studies. I well remember at one of these exhibitions, the celebrated pulpit orator, Gideon Blackburn, was present. This gentleman was the most eloquent divine I ever heard, and his address to the students was a matchless piece of eloquence. It was the first true and lofty eloquence I ever heard, and I never knew before the power of this celestial gift to man. A native and accomplished orator exhibits human nature in its highest eminence.

I finished my Latin studies with great celerity, but I often revised them afterwards at the college, and taught classes in that language; so that, when I left the college, I was a good Latin scholar.

The circumstances under which I labored forced me to study, as I have already stated. I was diffident, particularly in the society of ladies, and was also destitute of all the fashionable and polished graces of a ballroom. I never knew a tune, or attempted to dance in my life. I possessed in an eminent degree the awkward appearance of a wild youth caught up from the prairies of Illinois. I knew well my situation, and would not if I had the means, and I had not, force myself into fashionable and accomplished dissipation, under any circumstances, although urged to it by all my youthful comrades.


In my situation, intense application to my books was my sole employment and pleasure, and my success naturally arose out of my exertions.

Chapter XXV.

The Second Year at College. — The Scenes at College. — General Houston, of Texas, at the Same Institution. — Commenced Reading Law. — Studied Intensely. — Became Sick. — Quit Study. — Returned to Illinois.

IN the vacation of this college I studied as attentively as I did at other times. In one vacation, I studied the English grammar and Euclid's Elements of Geometry. I found the English grammar to present no great trouble to understand it; but to be particular in the observance of the rules was more difficult, and often the rules were disregarded. The study of Euclid's Elements of Geometry was to me a great treat, and unfolded to me a science of absolute certainty that none other attains. It astonished me how the principles of geometry could first be demonstrated, when it was with considerable difficulty that a person can follow the landmarks laid down by the ancient sages and philosophers. The fifth problem in Euclid, known as the pons assinorum, "bridge of asses," was somewhat difficult to understand. When I demonstrated the problem, the teacher said that was the "bridge of asses," and as I crossed it, I could go on. I got over it before I knew it. The problem is grand and sublime where the square of the hypothenuse is proven to be equal to both the squares of the legs of a right-angled triangle. My former studies, the mathematics, made the elements of geometry more easily comprehended.

When the session of the college opened in the spring of 1810, I commenced the study of the sciences and literature, I studied geography and history carefully. I also read with care, rhetoric and logic. Blair's Lectures gave me such information on the various branches of that subject. This author showed himself in these lectures to be a great and learned man, whose science and work on rhetoric entitle him to much fame.

I studied the treatise of logic written by Dr. Watts, which was mathematical and demonstrative, after the manner of Euclid's Elements of Geometry. The moral philosophy, by Dr. Paley, was also studied by me, and recited to the teacher. The next study I commenced was astronomy, which unfolded the great and grand works of creation, which I only glimpsed at in Illinois. Dr. Young says the truth, that "an undevout astronomer must be mad." Although the study of astronomy was pleasing and fascinating, yet much of the science was abstruse


and difficult to comprehend. It required the undivided attention of the mind to understand it. I studied also at this college, the science of chemistry, in connection with natural philosophy. Chemistry is a very interesting study, which gave me much entertainment.

During the closing sessions at the college I enjoyed much social happiness. I became attached to the preceptor and students, and we mingled together like a band of brothers. My studies were not only easy and light, but pleasant and agreeable. I wore off some of the diffidence and rusticity of my youth, and was easy and happy in a society that was so kind to me. I had gained a little reputation at the college and a short distance around it.

I enjoyed in Illinois the character of a wild, sportive youth, but this was the first speck of literary reputation ever reached me, although small, yet my vanity and foibles of human nature were pleased at it. It is happiness to any one to know his actions are approved by his conscience and an intelligent public. After the exhibition and the examination of the students on the sciences we studied, I left the institution with a heart brimful of intense feelings. It pained me to leave my fellow-students, perhaps forever, and the venerable preceptor; but duty demanded it, and the effort was accomplished. At this last session, a youth, afterwards Governor Sam Houston, of Texas, was a student, and was an agreeable young man, whom all respected.

My excellent and learned preceptor is yet alive in Maryville, Tennessee, and is, as he always has been, for almost half a century, not only a standard of the clerical profession, but the great patriarch of literature in East Tennessee.

In October, 1810, I commenced the study of the law, in Knoxville, with a most excellent and agreeable man and lawyer John McCampbell, Esq. In his office I commenced Blackstone's Commentaries. I was highly pleased with the style of the author, and the system on which Judge Blackstone presented the common-law of England to his students. There is no law-book extant that can boast of a better style, or a more compendious system of the laws of England, than is found in the Commentaries of Blackstone.

I had few acquaintances in Knoxville, and was retired and private — had no recreation, amusement, or social society. I was forced to study night and day in self-defence, and before spring I injured my health so much that I was forced to abandon my studies. I read six or eight months incessantly, and in the time had passed a successful examination on Blackstone and other law-books. I studied history also in the time. My preceptor, Mr. McCampbell, urged on me the neccessity of understanding the history of England, so as to comprehend the common-law, and the various statutes passed in aid of it. I also read many


miscellaneous works. Mr. McCampbell possessed a large library of literary and miscellaneous books as well as law.

I studied in this intense and unwise manner until spring, and I contracted a cough, and my lungs were affected. I had pain in my breast, and often spit blood. I became pale, emaciated, and lost my appetite. I had cold, unnatural sweats at night, and slept but little. I was weak and inactive. I had at college and at musters through the country frequently tried my speed with foot-racers, but now I was scarcely able to mount a horse, let alone to run a foot-race. How I grieved at the loss of my backwoods' activity! My situation alarmed my uncle and friends more than it did me. I had such implicit confidence in my native vigor and strength of constitution, that I thought nothing could injure me. But by the advice of friends I consulted a learned and talented physician, Dr. Strong, and he was some surprised at my situation. He at once pronounced me incurable, if I continued to pursue the same course of conduct that reduced me to that situation. He took much interest in my case, as I persume he discovered I was worse than I supposed I was. He said I must reverse the order of things that produced this result. I must study none — take all the exercise that I could bear — eat light food, and pass my time in jovial and pleasant society. This was the ground work of the cure, and his advice, I presume, saved my life. Under these circumstances, I shut up my books, and bid a farewell to the law and my studies for almost a year.

My fine race-horse became sick from inaction, and unlike me, he died. I possessed then nothing on earth save some few clothes, and the commencement of the consumption. I had no horse, no money, or wealth of any description. But the hearts of my uncle and aunt overflowed with kindness to me. I was furnished with a fine horse and money, and started home to Illinois, by Lexington, Kentucky, and Vincennes, Indiana, in the spring of the year 1811.

Chapter XXVI.

The Summer of 1811. — Miscellaneous. — My Return to Illinois. — My Health. — Indian Disturbance. — Indications of War. — Forts Built. — Captain Levering at Peoria to Sound the Indians. — The Comet — The Earthquake. — Sports and Horse-Racing.

I wended my way over the Cumberland Mountains, at the famous gap known as the "Cumberland Gap," and although I was sick, lonesome, and feeble, yet I enjoyed the mountain scenery with great pleasure. Some of the elevations of perpendicular rocks, on the sources of the Cumberland River, near


the road must be over a thousand feet high. I often gazed with wonder and delight at these sublime and majestic works of nature in these mountains. This is the same road on which General George Rogers Clark and Gabriel Jones blistered their feet travelling in the year 1776, from Kentucky to the capital of Virginia. This is also the road on which Boone first travelled to Kentucky. I was surprised to see the Kentucky River where it seemed to have chiseled itself a channel a hundred feet deep in places in the limestone rocks, to run in.

Lexington was a handsome town at that day; and near it was the first attempt to erect a steam-mill I ever saw. The mill was not finished, but much work was done on it. One night, in Lexington, for the first time, I heard the watchman cry out in a shrill, unearthly tone, the time of night, and the weather. I got up and went to the window to know what was the matter! The next day, I was told all about it — Louisville was then, in the spring of 1811, a small place.

I crossed the Ohio River alone, and started through the wilderness to Vincennes. At that period, the Indians had alarmed the people on the road so much that scarcely any settlers remained on the way. I found at White River a flat-boat, but no one to cross me over. I had been accustomed some to a boatman's life. I put my horse in the flat-boat and rowed myself over, although the stream run with an exceedingly strong current. No one resided between Vincennes and the Kaskaskia River. McCauley had improved at the Little Wabash, but had left it for fear of the Indians. I got in company with two other travellers at Vincennes, and we made the journey together to Shoal Creek, in the present Clinton County. At this point, they went on to St. Louis, and I made my way to Goshen settlement, where my father resided.

On the route from Vincennes to Illinois I could not keep with my companions, but they would wait for me. I was on a fine horse, but I became so weak that I could scarcely sit on him. We travelled exceedingly fast. The first day after leaving Vincennes we camped at the Little Wabash, and the next night at the Kaskaskia River. I got home to my father's in the American Bottom, in a little more than two and a-half days' travel from Vincennes. My mother was much distressed at my appearance, and shed tears profusely. She mourned my untimely death, as if I were dead. This was the most trying scene of this character I ever experienced. I was distressed with the grief of my mother. I consoled her, cheered her up, and made a bad case as good as possible, with my sickly appearance. I took no medicine, except, perhaps, I drank some water mixed with ley. I regulated my diet to suit me, and exercised much on horseback.

A person in the backwoods without a horse, is almost like a


soldier in battle without a gun, or a German on a farm without a wagon. I traded and managed until I got a horse.

During this summer, much excitement prevailed among the people on account of the approaching war with Great Britain and with the Indians. Although the country had its improvements, yet it was weak and defenceless. Numerous hordes of warlike and hostile savages surrounded the settlements, and indications were certain that they breathed a spirit of vengeance against the whites.

It is strange that the pioneers on the frontiers could discover sooner the movements of the British Government, through the Indians, than our government could by their Minister in Europe.

My father resided not far from the frontiers, and his house was often filled at night with the citizens for fear of the Indians. Two murders were committed this year, which added much to the fears and alarms of the people. A young man, Mr. Cox, was killed on the 2d of June, near the forks of Shoal Creek, in the present county of Bond, and his sister, a young woman, taken prisoner. The young lady was rescued, but the horses the Indians stole from the house were not recovered. On the 20th June, of the same year, 1811, Mr. Price was killed near the spring in the lower part of the present city of Alton. And to close the year with Indian troubles, the celebrated battle of Tippecanoe was fought on the 7th of November of that year.

Under these circumstances, the country was agitated throughout the whole year, and with good cause, as the next year the war was declared, and the whole Indian world turned loose on the weak and defenceless settlements on the western frontiers.

Ninian Edwards had been appointed, in the year 1809, Governor of the territory of Illinois, and he was active and efficient in preparing the country for defence. With his advice, family forts were erected all around the frontiers. In this year, Governor Edwards ordered Captain Levering, from Kaskaskia, to organize a small military company at Cahokia, and to proceed with it in a boat to Peoria. At that day, Peoria was considered almost as inaccessible as California is at this time. The whole country north of a sparse settlement on Wood River and Shoal Creek, in the present counties of Madison and Bond, was a wilderness filled with hostile Indians, and Peoria was at that day only visited by Indian traders. The object of the expedition was to sound the Indians around Peoria, as that village was the capital of all the Indian country in Illinois at that day.

Joseph Trotier, a French Creole of Cahokia, a person of sagacity, was sent out from Peoria some forty miles to the Kickapoo Indians, that resided on Sugar Creek, north-east of Elkhart Grove, in the present county of Sangamon. Trotier had a "talk" prepared, and took down by his interpreter the


speeches of the Indians in answer to it. I disremember what information they sent back to Governor Edwards; but I have no doubt it was evasive and untrue.

There are no people who have more low, cunning diplomacy than the Indians, and this nation, the Kickapoos, had the most intelligence of any of the surrounding tribes. Captain Levering returned in peace, but by the exposure on the river he died soon after he reached Kaskaskia.

To add to the terrors of one class of people, a comet, large and brilliant, appeared in the fall of this year, in the south-west section of the heavens. This comet was believed by many to be a true harbinger of war, and stories were afloat among the people, that the roar of a battle, the reports of the cannon and small arms were heard in the skies. The reality of war the next year was bad enough without these silly stories.

On the night of the 16th of November, 1811, an earthquake occurred that produced great consternation among the people. The centre of the violence was near New Madrid, Missouri, but the whole valley of the Mississippi was violently agitated. Our family all were sleeping in a log-cabin, and my father leaped out of bed crying aloud "the Indians are on the house." The battle of Tippecanoe had been recently fought, and it was supposed the Indians would attack the settlements. We laughed at the mistake of my father, but soon found out it was worse than Indians. Not one in the family knew at that time it was an earthquake. The next morning, another shock made us acquainted with it, so we decided it was an earthquake. The cattle came running home bellowing with fear, and all animals were terribly alarmed on the occasion. Our house cracked and quivered so, we were fearful it would fall to the ground. In the American Bottom, many chimneys were thrown down, and the church bell in Cahokia sounded by the agitation of the building. It is said a shock of an earthquake was felt in Kaskaskia in 1804, but I did not perceive it. The shocks continued for years in Illinois, and some have been experienced this year, 1855.

In August of this year, I attended a camp-meeting at Shiloh, St. Clair County, and by sitting up all night, I brought on the fever and ague. I thought this disease gave me relief from the attack on my lungs.

In November of this year, I made a wager to run a-quarter race in Cahokia for five hundred dollars, and the, amount was to be staked in horses valued at cash prices. At that day, this amount was equal to several thousand at the present time, as the country is now so much wealthier. The race-horses were kept for weeks, and the whole country attended to see the sport, I had but one horse to stake, but Thomas Carlin, the late Governor of Illinois, and his relative, William Savage, owned the


horse I made the race on, and staked the balance of the horses. The property was valued low; as each party supposed they would win the race. We fairly won the bet. I sold the horse I won to a hotel-keeper in Knoxville, and boarded it out with him while I studied law.

Chapter XXVII.

My Return to College and to the Law-School in Knoxville, Tenn. — Hugh L. White and Jenkin Whiteside. — General Gaines and Recruits in Knoxville. — Last Foot-Race of the Author.

I TRAVELLED into Tennessee in January, 1812, and entered again the college to revise my former studies. I remained here some time, and examined and rehearsed to my preceptor the general course of my previous studies. I discovered that my memory was good, and that all came up almost as fresh as ever to view.

After this revision of my previous studies at the college, I became again a law-student in the office of Mr. McCampbell, at Knoxville, in the year 1812.

It was considered by all that I had escaped from sickness, and perhaps death, fortunately, and that I must not study in that unwise manner again. I saw, myself, the necessity of more exercise and relaxation of my labors, and acted accordingly.

Nevertheless, I read considerably, and attended the courts to witness the practice of the law in them. The seat of the State Government was then in Knoxville, and the Superior Court sat there. I often witnessed the efforts of Hugh L. White, and other profound lawyers of the State. Jenkin Whiteside was at that day considered at the head of the bar of the State, and his oddities and peculiarities caused much gossip. He had an old white horse, it was said, he rode; and without riding this horse to court his mind was not at ease, and he could not gain a suit. Much such nonsense was told of him.

It was on the 18th of June, in this year, that war was declared against Great Britain; and all Tennessee was excited to the utmost. This State is justly entitled to the honor it has uniformly maintained of patriotism and the volunteering spirit to defend the rights of the nation "in the deadly breach."

Colonel Gaines recruited a regiment this year in Tennessee, and the martial music, and the training of the new soldiers, occupied the streets, and attracted the attention of the citizens of Knoxville all this summer. The ensuing winter, this regiment remained at old Fort Massacre, on the Ohio, and in the spring made its appearance on the Canada frontier, where it, General Gaines, and other officers, gained immortal honor in the many battles which they fought with the enemy.


I had pretty well recovered my health and vigor, and my ardent predilection for the sport and amusement of racing seized me again. I attended some races in Tennessee, and ran one myself. Mr. Miller and friends boasted that he could beat any one for a hundred dollars running a foot-race for a hundred yards. I told a gentleman, Colonel Howell, that I thought I could beat Miller running, and that if he would bet eighty dollars I would go in twenty.

The race was made, and I won the bet. I paid off with my twenty dollars some debts I owed in town, and that was, I believe, the last foot-race I ran for a wager. My preceptor and my staid friends did not approve of it, but they excused it in me, as it was, they presumed, about the last of my wild backwoods education oozing out.

Chapter XXVIII.

The War of 1812 with Great Britain and her Indian Allies in Illinois. — Hostile Spirit of the Indians. — Rangers around the Frontiers. — Forts. — Troops Organized. — Camp Russell. — Extended Frontier. — Dixon, his Warriors. — Gomo, a Chief, met Gov. Edwards in Council. — Tecumseh at Vincennes. — Murders Committed. — Hill's Fort Attacked. — Belleview Defended. — Fort La Motte Erected above Vincennes. — Rangers Established. — Col. Russell. — Massacre at Chicago. — Taylor's Battle at Fort Harrison. — A Pottawatomie Warrior Killed a White Man on a Boat.

FOR many years before the declaration of war against England, the Indians all around the Western frontiers showed a hostile spirit, and each year, for several years, that hostile feeling increased. In 1811 — as it was stated in a previous chapter — the Indian tribes surrounding the territory of Illinois became quite hostile and murdered some few citizens.

Under these circumstances, the citizens organized companies themselves, without the order of government, for their own defence. In 1811, the frontiers were guarded by mounted men from the Mississippi, at the point where the city of Alton now stands, to Shoal Creek, and the Kaskaskia River. Forts were erected in this year as far out as the present site of Carlyle, and continued south on the frontiers down the Kaskaskia and the Mississippi. Some garrisons for defence were established on the frontiers of the settlements on the Wabash River up as high as Vincennes, and for some miles above. One of the interior and most exposed forts was erected by the Jordan family, on Muddy River, near the place where the old Fort Massacre trace crossed the stream. All the interior of the territory and all north was a wilderness, crowded with the Indian enemy. The settlements


were weak and sparse towards the mouth of the Ohio, so that the intercourse between the northern and southern Indians was not disturbed. The spirit of war and defiance was breathed from one end of the territory to the other, and a settled determination was made to remain in the country, or die. Some few may have abandoned the country for fear of the war, but ten immigrated to it for one that left it. Good rifles rose to the price of fifty and seventy-five dollars.

In the forepart of the year 1812, several mounted companies were organized, and ranged over the country as far as Vincennes, and in the commencement of the year, Gov. Edwards established Fort Russell, a few miles north-west of the present town of Edwardsville. He made this frontier post his headquarters, and fortified it in such manner as to secure the military stores and munitions of war. This fort was not only the appui of military operations, but was also the resort of the talent and fashion of the country. The Governor opened his court here, and presided with the character that genius and talent always bestow on the person possessing them. The cannon of Louis XIV, of France, were taken from old Fort Chartres, and with them and other military decorations, Fort Russell blazed out with considerable pioneer splendor.

But a peep behind the curtain showed a weak and extended frontier from the site on the Mississippi where Alton now stands, down the river to the mouth of the Ohio, and up that stream and the Wabash to a point many miles above Vincennes, with a breadth of only a few miles at places. This exposed outside was three or four hundred miles long, and the interior and north inhabited by ten times as many hostile and enraged savages as there were whites in the country. The British garrisons on the north furnishing them with powder and lead and malicious counsels, and the United States leaving the country to its own defences, presented a scene of distress that was oppressing.

In the spring of 1812, Captain Ramsey had a small company of regular troops stationed at Camp Russell, and they remained there only for a few months. These were the only regulars that saw Camp Russell during the war.

In the commencement of the war, the Indian traders reported the fact that Colonel Dixon, at Prairie du Chien, had engaged all the warriors of the north, and around the prairie, to descend the Mississippi and exterminate the settlements on both sides of the river. This was the plan of the campaign, but the English needed the Indians mote in Canada, and they were brought to that section, and thereby our country was saved from a great effusion of blood. Many citizens who knew of the design of Dixon's warriors actually fortified their houses in the interior of the country, not far from Kaskaskia, and some removed their families to Kentucky. Dixon was a man of


talents, and had, as an Indian trader, great influence with the Indians. He had the power to march the Indians to any point he pleased.

In April, 1812, Gomo, the Pottawatomie chief, with many of his band, and some Chippewas, met Governor Edwards in council at Cahokia. The wild men exercised the most diplomacy, and made the Governor believe the Indians were for peace, and that the whites need dread nothing from them. They promised enough to obtain presents, and went off laughing at the credulity of the whites.

In August, the previous year, the celebrated Tecumseh attempted to practise a worse game on Governor Harrison, at Vincennes, but the Governor had been for a series of years their agent, and knew well the Indian character. It is probable Tecumseh intended to murder Harrison in council, but the quick discernment of the Governor prevented it. This great Indian judged the whites by himself. He supposed if Governor Harrison was removed, none other was capable to take his place. When Tecumseh fell in battle, no other warrior was equal to the task to supply the place of this great man. Tecumseh was not blood-thirsty or brutal in his passions. His hatred to the whites governed all his actions, and this hostilty arose entirely from his patriotism to preserve his nation and country from destruction. I have been always sorry that the war in which the Indians engaged against us made it necessary to destroy Tecumseh, as he was the greatest man in either of the armies in which he was slain.

Many murders were committed by the Indians on the whites during the first year of the war. In the summer of 1812, Andrew Moore and son were killed by the Indians on Big Muddy, some distance above the crossing of the stream by the old Fort Massacre Road. The same year, Mr. Barbara was shot dead and James Jordon wounded, by the Indians, at Jordon's Fort. This year, in the fall, Hill's Fort, on Shoal Creek, in the present county of Bond, was attacked by a numerous band of warriors, and one man wounded. The Indians punched a hole through the back wall of a chimney in one of the block-houses of the fort — shot through the hole, and wounded a man at the fire. Lindley, a soldier, had been out feeding his horses, and when he went out he left the gate of the fort open. The Indians rushed to it, but it was shut on them, leaving Lindley also out with the Indians. It is said, Lindley remained on and under an ox in the drove while the gang of cattle ran away, and saved his life. This escape of Lindley reminds us of the story in Homer's Odyssey, of the large ram carrying the hero in his wool out of the cave of the giant Polyphemus. The Indians were repulsed, and some of them killed from the top of the pickets of Hill's Fort, as the blood indicated; but the dead bodies were carried off, as is the custom with Indians.

This year, about two hundred Winnebago Indians attacked a factory-store of the United States, situated on the Mississippi, and on the west side of the river, at the site where Bellevue now stands. It was defended by Lieutenants Thomas Hamilton and B. Vasques, with a small regular force, who beat off the enemy and kept the fort. This was considered a gallant defence , that gave the officers and troops much standing.

During this year, the military were organized all around the frontiers, from the uppermost settlements on the Mississippi down to the mouth of the Ohio, and up to the frontiers above Vincennes, on the Wabash River. Fort La Motte was established on the creek of the same name, above Vincennes, which was maintained during the whole war. Forts were also erected near the mouth of the Little Wabash, and on the frontiers in almost all prominent exposed settlements, to give protection to the inhabitants. Hill's and Jones' Forts were built on Shoal Creek, and so on throughout the country on the exposed frontiers. At the present town of Carlyle, a fort was erected in 1811. Captains Willis Hargrave and William McHenry commanded cavalry companies, ready at a moment's warning to pursue the enemy when any depredations were committed. Captain Craig, of Shawneetown, also was the commander of a company, who performed much service in the war. He commanded an expedition from Shawneetown to Peoria. by water, in the fall of 1812. Captain William Boon likewise organized a mounted company on Big Muddy River, in the present county of Jackson, prepared also for the defence of the frontier. An act of Congress, passed this year, organized ten companies of mounted rangers to defend the territories of the West. These companies were parcelled out through the frontier, and were commanded by Col. Wm. Russell, an excellent J officer and an Indian fighter, of Kentucky. This regiment was the 17th, and was generally composed of active frontier-citizens, whose duty it was to defend their homes and firesides. Each member received a dollar per day and he furnished his horse, provisions, equipments, and everything for the service. The company-officers were generally appointed also from the frontier-inhabitants, and were for the most part very efficient and energetic men. This regiment was enlisted for a year at a time, and remained in service during the war.

Four companies of United States rangers were allotted to the defence of Illinois, and were commanded by Captains William B. Whiteside, James B. Moore, Jacob Short, and Samuel Whiteside. These companies, with their able and energetic officers, performed valuable and important service in


keeping safe the frontier from maurauding parties of the enemy.

One of the most shocking and revolting massacres of men, women, and children, that occurred during the war, in the West, was perpetrated by the Indians at Chicago. On the 15th August, 1812, Captain Heald marched out of the fort at Chicago with fifty-four regulars, twelve militia, and about eighteen friendly Indians, commanded by Col. Wells, of Fort Wayne; also, there were many women and children in the retreat. About one and a-half miles from the fort, on the beach of the lake, the hostile Indians, to the number of four or five hundred, mostly Pottawatomies, commenced a destructive fire on the whites, and killed twenty-six regulars, all the militia, two women, and twelve children. Ensign Ronan and a Doctor Voorhees were among the slain; the rest of the whites, including the family of Mr. Kinzie, were made prisoners. The fort was destroyed by the Indians, and the property parcelled out among the warriors. This was a most horrid scene of butchery, and was perpetrated at such a remote section of the country that relief could not be extended to the sufferers, except by the slow operation of the Indians bartering the prisoners off at their pleasure, like they did their furs and peltries.

The Indians made a desperate attempt to destroy Fort Harrison, near Terre Haute, on the Wabash River, on the 4th of September, 1812, but were repulsed by Lieut. Taylor, afterward President of the United States, and a few sick soldiers under his command. The garrison was afflicted with much sickness; Taylor not having more than six or eight healthy men to mount guard — with numbers of women and children in the fort, whose cries were not so pleasant in the protracted conflict. At several times the fort was on fire, and one of the block-houses was entirely burnt to the ground; but the garrison made breastworks in its place, and by fighting seven or eight hours incessantly, repelled the attack. This defence, was considered, at that day, one of the most courageous and best fought battles of that class that occurred in the West during the whole war. It was of the same class of battles as that of Buena Vista, only one was like an earthquake and the other only a severe thunderstorm, but both were conducted by that military genius and talent that nature, at long intervals, bestows on her favorites. Taylor, although heaped with honor and praise, bore his fame with the becoming modesty of a great man.

In the forepart of the war, a Pottawatomie brave, a large man, Wabansia, afterward conspicuous as a chief, in the war against Black Hawk, was alone on the Wabash River, when a detachment of regulars were cordelling a boat up that river, landened with provisions; one man only was on the boat, and the other hands ahead with the cordell. Wabansia jumped on the


boat from the shore, killed the man on the boat, and made his escape without being injured. This Indian marched with us in the Black Hawk war, and appeared to be a fierce, savage warrior. In the fall of this year, the expedition known as Edward's campaign was organized, which is the subject of the next chapter.

Chapter XXIX.

Edward's Campaign. — March to Lake Peoria. — Captain Craig Destroys Peoria. — Hopkins Fails to Join Edwards on the Illinois River. — Speedy Return of Edwards.

IN September of this year, all the disposable forces that could be raised in Illinois, amounting to about three hundred and fifty strong, mustered at Camp Russell, and were organized into a small army to destroy the strongholds of the Indians on Peoria Lake. Colonel Russell marched in the campaign, and seemed to take considerably the immediate command under Governor Edwards. The army was organized into two small regiments, commanded by Colonels Benjamin Stephenson and Elias Rector. John Moredock ranked as Major; and Colonel Desha, of the United States Army, acted as a field-officer — but of what grade I do not know. The officers commanding companies were the four Captains of the United States rangers, mentioned in the previous chapter, and I think Captain Janney, with Lieutenant Roukson, commanded a small company. Captain Hargrave, from the Ohio Saline, included at present in the county of Gallatin, commanded a large company. Captain McHenry was the commander of some soldiers from the county of White, at this time, but if he marched in this expedition I do not recollect.

Captain Samuel Judy organized a company of twenty-one men, who acted as spies, or front guard, to the army in its march. Just before this expedition left Camp Russell, I reached home from Knoxville, and took the horse of my youngest brother, Thomas, who was then a mere lad, and I was made a private in Judy's company. My brother remained on the frontier to guard it, and I and two other brothers served in the campaign.

Judge Pope, Nelson Rector, and a Lieutenant McLaughlin, of the army, acted as the aids to Governor Edwards. Colonel Russell was a plain old man, dressed in Kentucky jeans, or linsey, seemed to need no aids, and had none, but was a good and efficient officer himself.

The army was ordered to pack on their horses provisions for twenty or twenty-five days for themselves, and the horses were to sustain themselves on the grass. Captain Craig had in his


boat, mentioned heretofore, provisions for the army if they needed them. No baggage-wagons or anything of that character existed in this campaign. A very few may have had packhorses, but the rank and file had none. I know I had none.

This campaign was intended to march into the most dense and warlike Indian population in the West. But it was contemplated to meet the expedition of General Hopkins, of Kentucky, and both together could make a stand against the enemy in their strongholds. The privates (and myself one,) did not know or care much where we were marched, whether into danger or a frolic.

We left Camp Russell, marched up the north-west side of Cahokia Creek, nearly to its source, thence across the prairie to Macoupin Creek, not far above the present Carlinville, and at the Lake Fork we stopped to noon. At this point, some wild boys dug open an Indian grave, and found in it, with the Indian, a gun, broaches, and other articles buried with him. It is the Indian belief that the departed soul needs a gun, while in the other world, with which to hunt for a living. We crossed the Sangamon River east of the present Springfield, and passed not far on the east of the Elkhart Grove. At that day, this grove presented a beautiful and charming prospect. It was elevated, and commanded a view over the natural prairies for many miles around. We next reached an old Indian village on Sugar Creek, where we saw on the bark of the wigwams much painting, generally the Indians scalping the whites. We set it in flames, and travelled in the night toward Peoria. We were afraid that the Indians would know of our approach and leave the villages. We travelled on toward midnight and camped. We had guides along who conducted the army to the village of Potawatomie Indians, known as the Black Partridge village, situated at the Illinois River bluff, nearly opposite the upper end of Peoria Lake. We camped within four or five miles of the village, and all was silent as a grave-yard — as we expected a night attack, as was the case with Harrison at Tippecanoe. When troops are silent, sulky, and savage, they will fight. Our horses were tied near the camp, saddled, and prepared for action if needed. We lay with our clothes on, and guns in our arms.

A soldier by the name of Bradshaw, fixing his gun, it fired. Every man in the army was sure of a battle, but in a few minutes, Gov. Edwards cried out, "it was an accident." One thing I recollect, I had a white blanket-coat on me, and I considered it too white at night. I hulledthis coat off in doublequick time. It was said, every one with a white coat on in the battle of Tippecanoe was killed.

Four men, Carlin, Roberts, Davis, and Stephen Whiteside, volunteered to reconnoitre the Indian town, and did so, but


were in great danger doing it. They reported to Governor Edwards the position of the enemy.

The next morning, in a fog, our company, the spies, met two Indians, as we supposed, and our captain fired on them. Many of us before he shot begged for mercy for the Indians, as they wanted to surrender. But Judy said, anybody will surrender when they cannot help it, and that he did not leave home to take prisoners. I saw the dust rise off the Indian's leather shirt when Judy's bullet entered his body. Both Indians were mounted on good horses. The wounded Indian commenced singing his death song, and the blood streaming out of his mouth and nose. He was reeling, and a man from the main army, Mr. Wright, came up within a few yards of the wounded Indian, but the Indian just previously had presented his gun at some of us near him, but we darted off our horses as quick as thought and presented the horses between him and us, so he could not shoot us; but Wright was either surprised or something else, and remained on his horse. The Indian, as quick as a steel-trap, shot Wright, and in a few minutes after the Indian expired. As soon as we heard the report of the Indian's gun, Wright cried out with the pain of his wound, which was in his groin. The other Indian, supposed to be a warrior, was a squaw, but before the fact was known, many guns were fired at her. It is singular, that so many guns fired at the squaw missed her, but when the whites surrounded her, and knew her sex, all was over. She cried terribly, and was taken prisoner, and at last delivered over to her nation. Many of the French in the army understood her language, and made her as happy as possible. In this small matter I never fired my gun, as I saw no occasion for it.

The army moved to the bluff near the village of the Black Partridge, and near it was a muddy creek, beyond which we saw some Indians jumping from tree to tree, which rendered it almost certain that we would be attacked crossing this creek. Our Captain looked back, and I saw he had bullets in his mouth ready to put in his gun to load it. We sat light on our horses when we expected to receive the Indian fire every minute, but it all passed off, much to our satisfaction, without being fired on.

When the troops came near the village, no order or restraint could be observed. All pounced on the town pell mell, with shouts "loud and long," but just when we came in sight, the Indians — men, women, and children — retreated from the village in the greatest hurry and speed. Near the town were swamps, almost impassable, and a great portion of the horsemen were mired before they knew it. My horse fell down in the mud, and I went rolling over his head into the swamp. Near me I saw Governor Edwards and horse flounder in a deep mud-hole, both down and covered with black mud. The village was built here


on account of the mud and impassable morasses for defence. The Indians saved themselves by the swamps. Horsemen could not act, and the cat-tail and brush were so thick in these morasses that the Indians hid in them, and it was dangerous to approach them. Several parties on foot trailed after the body of the Indians two or three miles across this swampy bottom to the river, and killed some of the enemy on the route and at the river. A few of the army were wounded, but none killed. Three men, Howard, St. Jean, and Kitchen, in the fury of the chase, crossed the Illinois River in the Indian canoes, in face of many Indians, but were not killed. The Indians had left their horses, camp-kettles, corn, and everything on which to support themselves, in the village, which were all taken away or destroyed. The horses were all captured; and among which some American horses the Indians had stolen. What corn and other articles that could not be removed were burnt. A complete destruction of the village was effected. Some Indian children were found in the ruins and saved. A large Indian was wounded, and thereby was unable to run off with the rest: he was starving, and ate bread voraciously when it was given him. He was protected while the army remained in the village, but it was said that some straggler behind killed him after the army left.

During our stay at the village, an Indian warrior deliberately walked down the bluff, some couple of hundred yards from our troops, and fired his gun at us. He laughed loud, and slowly walked off. Some men were sent in pursuit, but could not find him. This was an Indian bravado.

When we reached this village, we heard nothing of Hopkins army, and I presume it was not prudent to remain there any time. In this vicinity, in a day or two, one thousand Indians could be assembled. Under these considerations, the army started back the same day they destroyed the village. I recollect all the booty I took was a deer-skin, sewed fast all around, and it full of corn. It rained in the evening, and my corn-sack got wet, which caused it to become as slippery as a fish; but I hung to it and got it to camp that night. Every one dreaded an attack from the Indians, as they all knew that they were numerous in that vicinity. We travelled on till dark in torrents of rain, and camped on the high bluff of the river, where we could obtain neither water to drink nor wood to burn. We were all exhausted, and many lay down in the rain and mud without food, fire, or water to drink. I never experienced such a bad night. I saw, in the morning, men sleeping half covered with mud where the horses and men had tramped the earth. No Indians appeared, and we were glad of it. The next morning we started by time; got out into the open woods; made fires; dried ourselves; fired off our guns; loaded again;


ate our breakfast, and commenced in earnest our march for home.

While the army was in the neighborhood of the old village of Peoria, Captain Craig had his boat lying in the lake adjacent to Peoria. The boat was fortified so that the fire of the enemy could not penetrate it. Craig was attacked on several occasions by the Indians, but received no damage. He anchored his boat out in the lake, and was secure from danger. The Captain supposing the few inhabitants of Peoria favored the Indians, burnt the village. This was considered by every one a useless act. Thomas Forsyth, Esq., was in the village at the time, acting as Indian-agent, appointed by the Government, but Craig, and none others, knew it, except at Washington City. It was supposed by the President that Mr. Forsyth would be more serviceable to both sides, if his old friends, the Indians, did not know his situation. He acted the honorable part to ameliorate the horrors of war on both sides, and risked his life often among the Indians to obtain from the enemy some of the prisoners who had been captured at the massacre of Chicago. In the rage of Captain Craig, he placed the inhabitants of Peoria, all he could capture, on board of his boat, and landed them on the bank of the river, below Alton. These poor French were in a starving condition, as they were turned away from their homes, and left their stock and provisions. They were landed in the woods — men, women, and children — without shelter or food.

Our army reached Camp Russell in safety, after some weeks' march, where we were received with the honors of a salutation, booming from the Fort Chartres cannon, and the roar of small arms. The troops for the most part were permitted to return to their homes, and Judy's company, wherein I was a private, was discharged entirely.

Thus closed this short, energetic campaign, which no doubt did much service in preventing the Indians from maurauding around the frontiers. Not a man was killed, and all were pleased with the services he performed for the country, but not so with the expedition under General Hopkins.

Gen. Hopkins marched at the head of four thousand Kentucky volunteers, and passed into the limits of Illinois, through the present county of Edgar. They pursued their way through the almost unbounded prairies toward the timber on the Illinois River, but the General became sick, the prairies were on fire, and the volunteers were unruly and disorderly. Under these circumstances, the fine army under General Hopkins reached no farther north-west than, perhaps, the head timber of the Vermillion, on the Illinois River, and returned home in disorder, without effecting the object of the campaign.

Military operations closed on the frontiers until spring, and


the troops all laid quiet at their homes, except a few on the outposts to guard the military stores.

Chapter XXX.

The War in Illinois in 1813. — Ranging Companies Organized. — The Author Became a Ranger. — Soldier Amusements. — Murders by the Indians. — Gen. Howard's Campaign. — Army Organized. — Marched Up the Mississippi River. — A Soldier Killed at Peoria. — Built Fort Clark. — Skirmishes on Lake Peoria. — Tricks of Murdick.

THE war drove in many of the French inhabitants in the fall of 1812, from the outposts, and they assembled in Cahokia in great numbers. Although they were engaged in a war, yet these merry people passed a pleasant winter in this old village, dancing and enjoying all sorts of merriment.

In the fall of 1812, I was examined at Kaskaskia before Judges Thomas and Sprigg, two of the United States judges for the territory, and admitted to practise law. I attended a county court this fall which was held in an old house of Thomas Kirkpatrick, near the high bank of Cahokia Creek, embraced in the present Edwardsville, but I had no business in court, and being so diffident, and so much out of gear for the practice of law, that I was truly glad I had nothing to do.

On the 3d March, 1813, Captain William B. Whiteside organized his United States Ranging Company, and in it I, with my three brothers, enlisted as privates. It was my services in this company, during the war, that has given to me the sobriquet of "the Old Ranger," by which I am almost as well known in the State as by my proper name. It was my friends, in electioneering campaigns, who commenced the cognomen to advance our party, by presenting to the people the fact of my ranging services on the frontiers in the late war with Britain.

In the early part of the spring of this year, preparations for defence were made as efficient and extensive as the means of the country would permit. Block-houses and forts were strengthened all around the frontiers, from the Mississippi east and south, and the small garrisons and settlements known as Hill's and Jones' Forts, on Shoal Creek, removed into the more dense settlements near the Mississippi. The ranging, and other military companies, were placed at the various points on the frontiers, and ranged around the settlements. The company I was in, I recollect, was stationed on the Mississippi, directly opposite the mouth of the Missouri River, which we guarded as well as ranged on the frontier. At these encampments, the rangers enjoyed much backwoods' amusement. The soldiers were permitted to return home at certain periods to procure


provisions, change clothes, and the like. Frequently they would have in their saddle-bags, on their return to camp, a bottle of whiskey. On one occasion, one of the rangers returned to the fort on the river with his saddle-bags, when one of his comrades slyly went out to where his horse was hitched and thrust his hand in his private saddle-bags, thinking there was a bottle of whiskey in them. But the ranger had caught a ground-hog and put it alive in his sack. This was done to trap someone for a joke. The man, William Green, who felt for the bottle, got bit. Although the bite was severe, yet he said nothing about it, but told one of his comrades that he got a good dram from the bottle in the saddle-bags. His friend rushed his hand into the saddle-bags for the bottle, and the ground-hog also bit him. The pain was so severe that he screamed out, and gave the alarm of the ground-hog in the saddle-bags. This, and similar tricks, afforded the soldiers much amusement.

We had boats provided on the river, and were prepared to give the enemy a naval battle if they descended.

During this year, a considerable number of murders were committed by the Indians. The frontiers were so extended that although the troops were diligent and efficient, still much blood was shed by the maurauding parties of the enemy. On the 4th of February in this year, two families residing on the Ohio River, near Cash River, in the present county of Alexander, were mostly destroyed, and many of the remainder were wounded. I saw a man, long after the war, whose wounds on his face must have been severe, judging from the scars. The Indians committing the murders crossed the Ohio, and their trail could not be followed as the snow had covered it.

After Whiteside's company of rangers was organized, Indian depredations were committed at Hill's Ferry, on the Kaskaskia River, where Carlyle now stands, and Whiteside's company was ordered out to bury the dead and scour the country. I marched with the company, which was the first ranging service I performed.

Mr. Hill crossed two men over the Kaskaskia River, and the Indians killed one Mr. Young, and the other, Mr. McLain, a preacher, had a severe struggle for his life, and escaped. He threw a small bag of dollars at a large Indian who approached him with a tomahawk, which checked the warrior, and he swam the river. It was only less than a miracle that he escaped.

Captain Samuel Whiteside reached the scene of murder before we did, and our company made a tour up the east side of Shoal Creek from Hill's Fort by the site of the present Greenville, Bond County, and camped one night at Jones' cabins, north of Greenville. This was the first night I stood guard, and


I considered it a lonesome, tedious affair. We marched high up Shoal and Silver Creeks, and crossed Cahokia Creek, near the town of Edwardsville. This was ranging, and it was severe labor. But after a person is at home a few days he is anxious for another tour.

Boltenhouse, a pioneer, was killed this year a few miles from the site where Albion is now built, in Edwards County. The murder has given his name to the prairie where he was killed.

It was stated in the Missouri Gazette that sixteen men, women, and children were killed in Missouri and Illinois by the Indians this year, between the 8th of February and the 20th of March.

This year, Hutson, his wife, and four children, were killed by the Indians on the Wabash River, thirty miles above Vincennes. Afterwards, Fort La Motte was built in the vicinity, which shielded twenty families or more from Indian depredations during the war. This was the outside post on the eastern section of the territory in the war.

In March, of this year, a horrid murder was committed by the Indians in the present limits of Washington County. About four miles south-east of Covington, on Crooked Creek, the Lively family, to the number of seven, were killed by the enemy. A young man of the family and a stranger were out hunting their horses and saw the house attacked. Lively himself, the head of the family, was shot dead — but he was neither scalped or his body mangled. Two grown women were killed, and their persons shockingly mutilated and cut to pieces. A boy, seven years old, was taken out from the house and murdered. His entrails were taken out, his head cut off, and could not be found. This was a shocking case of savage Indian depredation. The two who were hunting the horses escaped, and on their retreat to the settlements they slept the first night at the grove of timber, six or eight miles south-east of Fayetteville, on the Kaskaskia River, which gave it the name of the "Lively Grove."

Captain Boon and company pursued the Indians, but the enemy had four days the start, and they were not overtaken. This murder was supposed to have been committed by the Kickapoo Indians. The next year, a party of Indians suffered severely at the hands of the whites, which was a kind of set-off to the Lively murder.

Gov. Howard resigned his office of Governor, and was appointed to the command of the military district in which were embraced Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, and some other of the adjacent States. It was decided to march a campaign of mounted men into the Indian country. The troops that could be spared were concentrated from Illinois, Missouri, Indiana, and perhaps some from Kentucky and Ohio.


The ranging companies of Illinois were ordered to meet at Camp Russell about the first of August, and were inspected by Major Clempson into actual service. The company of Captain William B. Whiteside, of which I was a private, and had been appointed orderly sergeant, was ordered to the Grand Piasa, nearly opposite Portage des Sioux, in Missouri. There we remained for several weeks as a nucleus for the other companies east of the Mississippi to assemble. The head-quarters of General Howard was at Portage des Sioux.

This fall was sickly, and many of the troops not only were sick at home but became diseased in camp. This was one reason that the expedition was so tardy in its movements. The troops from Missouri were to meet us at some point toward the present Quincy. At last the whole force were ordered to march by companies up the Mississippi, and we all crossed the Illinois River a few miles above its mouth. We had a large pirogue, and in it we crossed our baggage and ourselves, without loss of time or lives.

We marched up the margin of the Illinois River and crossed over the bluff to the Salt Prairie, in the Mississippi Bottom.

The troops marched slow, as we were waiting for those behind. We halted at the Salt Prairie, when some two or three rangers followed back their horses on the high lands. They had a skirmish with a few Indians, but not much was done, except the waste of some powder and lead. I saw, one of the gun-stocks shivered a little from an Indian bullet.In this section of the country the bee trees were numerous. I never saw any part of the earth so much blessed with honey. Boat-loads might have been procured in this part of Illinois.

The Missouri regiment of mounted men to the number of nearly five hundred, met in St. Louis and crossed the Missouri River not far from Belle Fontaine. They were commanded by Colonel McNair, afterward governor of the State of Missouri, and marched about one hundred miles up the Mississippi. There they made a platform on two canoes, and on it they crossed their baggage, provisions, and a part of themselves. The horses were swam over the river, carrying a man on the back of each one. Only one horse was lost.

The men swimming the horses took their clothes off and made a naked and restless appearance in the nettles and mosquitoes before their garments reached them.

It was on a Sunday, in the fall, that the two regiments met, and were organized into a brigade. Colonels Stephenson and McNair commanded the two regiments, and many officers under them were commanding in their various spheres.

My captain, William B. Whiteside, was appointed major, and so was Nathan Boon, and their two companies united under the command of Lemma. I still held my office of sergeant, as no


other person desired to perform the difficult duties of it — nor did I.

Many of my comrades, at the organization of the army, were appointed to small offices, but diffidence and a savage independence never permitted me to approach an officer's tent, or solicit anyone for an office. I declined becoming acquainted with any of the higher officers.

Gen. Howard was in command, and the army marched up the Mississippi to a point called "The Two Rivers." On the march we passed a camp of the Sac Indians, who must have been seven or eight hundred strong. They had not left it more than a day or two. If they had given us battle it would have required the superior energy and vigor of the whites to have subdued them, as their numbers were equal to ours. The night after we passed this large Indian camp, I was ordered to detail two rangers to act as a picket-guard, and I selected Thomas Carlin, afterward governor of Illinois, and another ranger whose name I have forgotten. This service was considered nearly certain death, but the men named entered upon this perlious undertaking cheerfully. The Indians did not attack us in the night, and guard and all were saved. The army marched on the high land out in the bounty-land tract, north of the Illinois River, and struck it not far from the mouth of Spoon River.

The night we reached the river, boats from Peoria came to us with provisions, and took the sick on board. We marched leisurely up the river to Peoria, and reached it from the northwest in the evening. The lake and the country rising gradually from the water for a considerable distance, presented a most charming and beautiful landscape. Here we camped for the night.

This night at Peoria was one of alarms and excitement most of the time. The troops were paraded often during the excitement, and many guns were fired at phantoms. A fine young man from Kentucky was shot dead by the sentinel. I saw him next morning, and his youthful and manly appearance excited much sympathy for his untimely end.

In the bustle, I attempted to load my gun, and got it choked with the bullet. Every moment we were ordered to arms, and I was compelled to unbreach my gun in the excitement, and knock the bullet out. I skinned my hand in the speedy operation, as I expected the Indians on us every minute. I felt bad with a choked gun. All the alarms were false, and in the morning we marched up the lake to Gomo's town. This village occupied the site where Chillicothe is now erected. We saw no Indians, but we were troubled with more alarms. During this night, we experienced the worst uproars and excitements of any other, and no Indians near. Next day, we marched back to Peoria, and crossed the river at the outlet of Peoria Lake. The


horses swam over, and boats ferried the baggage and men. A camp was formed on the south-east side of the lake, where the army remained three or four weeks. Boats were dispatched up the lake and river as far as the Starved Rock, as I understood; also, scouts were send out toward Rock River, and no Indians in any direction could be discovered. It is said the army was nine hundred strong — five hundred from Missouri and four hundred from Illinois, but I do not believe it amounted to that number. Nevertheless, its imposing appearance to the Indians made them fly from it and the country wherever it marched. I never believed, on reflection, that we would see one of the enemy during the campaign. An Indian will not attack a white man on fair and equal grounds, and I knew the Indians could not assemble and maintain, for any time, such numbers as we had.

At Peoria, I was sent over with another ranger to the regular officer to obtain truck-wagons, on which to haul logs to build a fort in Peoria. We cut logs and hauled them to the lake; the regular soldiers crossed them over the lake, and built the fort with them. It was called Fort Clark, in honor of Gen. George Rogers Clark, the great conqueror of the West.

The Indians and the regulars had some skirmishes at Peoria and on the lake before we arrived, but after that, no enemy appeared.

In November, the army marched home to the settlements near Camp Russell. The Indiana and Kentucky rangers took across the prairies toward Vincennes, and those from Missouri crossed the Mississippi near the mouth of the Missouri, or at St. Louis. Thus terminated this campaign, and although no great battles were fought, yet the enemy were driven back and terrified so much that the frontiers were greatly benefited by it.

While the troops were camped at Peoria, many of the rangers exercised their talents to procure liquor to drink.

John Murdick, a ranger of singular sagacity, and one who was also intemperate in the use of liquor, conceived a plan to procure a bottle of whiskey from the sutler without money. Murdick obtained two black bottles, and filled one with water. He put them both under his hunting-shirt, which was belted around him, and gave the empty bottle to the sutler and wanted it filled with whiskey. When it was filled, he had no money to pay for it. The only thing that could be done, after much parleying, was to pour back the whiskey into the bung-hole of the barrel — but Murdick poured the water out of his extra bottle into the barrel, and walked off with the whiskey, muttering aloud that "it was hard to be poor." He was celebrated for these tricks. At another time, in a drinking carousal, he deceived the landlord, and obtained whiskey all day for the whole assembly. He started this joke with twelve and a-half


cents, and with it paid for the first half-pint of whiskey. The custom, at that day, was to obtain the liquor to drink by measure, and not by drams, as is the practice at present. Murdick observed the landlord put the twelve and a-half cents in a teacup, which stood on a high shelf in a cupboard; when the grocery-keepeer turned his back, Murdick would take the same piece of money, and with it he would buy another half-pint. He continued this scene until the company were all boozy, and the landlord had only the first piece of coin Murdick commenced with. Similar tricks of this man would fill a volume. At last, excessive drink and a vicious life brought him to a bad end.

Chapter XXXI.

The War with Great Britain Continued, and Concluded in 1814. — The Author Appointed Judge Advocate. — The Militia Organized for Service. — Many Murders Committed by the Indians. — Capt. Short's Battle with the Indians. — Gov. Clarke's Expedition to Prairie du Chien. — The Garrison Captured there. — Campbell's Expedition to Rock Island. — The Battle at Rock Island. — Another Expedition under Major Taylor to Rock Island. — A Battle, and the Troops Forced Back Down the River. — Builds Fort Edwards.

CAPTAIN WHITESIDE being appointed a major in the army, he did not continue his company, and I did not enter myself in any other company. I was appointed without solicitation, by Gov. Edwards, judge advocate, and in that office I attended the recruiting and volunteering service. Although there were many ranging companions in service, nevertheless, the militia made a considerable force in the defence of the frontiers. This was the first commission I received, and the duties were troublesome and important to the defence of the frontiers, at this crisis in Illinois. I attended all the musters, and organized court-martials to try delinquents, and to keep the militia in proper organization. If her militia-officers were not rigid and vigilant many men would dodge the service, and perform no military duty in defending the frontiers. I discovered that drafting, or conscription, is the most equitable system on which to fill an army. Then all perform equal service. Under this system, in Illinois, we had what was known as "a forced volunteer," which was a militia-man drafted, and then, when he could not avoid the service, he volunteered. This was called "a forced volunteer."

During the summer of 1814, many murders were committed by the Indians. Mrs. Reagan and six children were killed in the forks of Wood River, Madison County. The husband was the first one to discover the murder, by stepping into the blood


of his slaughtered wife and children at night. The Indians were pursued by Samuel Whiteside and company, and one Indian killed in a tree-top, on the ground, by Pruitt, near Sangamon River, and the rest of the Indians escaped.

Henry Cox and son were killed in August, of that year, on Shoal Creek. The murder of Cox was much regretted, as he was a good soldier and a noble pioneer.

The wife of Jesse Bailes, and daughter of Mr. Bradsby, of Silver Creek, were killed by the Indians, on Sugar Creek, a few miles above the crossing of that creek by the railroad. Bailes and his wife were both out Sunday evening, hunting their hogs in the creek bottom, and the dogs barked at, and bayed the Indians in a thicket, but the whites supposed the dogs had found the hogs and were barking at them. Bailes and wife approached the thicket, and both were fired at; the lady, only, received the Indian bullet. She returned across the prairie to Silver Creek, to her father's, and died.

In August, 1814, Captain Short's company of United States rangers were camped at the Lively cabins, on Crooked Creek, a few miles east of old Covington, in the present county of Washington. Six men of the company discovered an Indian trail and pursued it. The Indians, seven in number, had stolen fourteen horses from the frontiers of Randolph County, and with the horses had made a large trail. The rangers pursued the Indians with much speed, and Just toward sunset came up with the enemy. In the prairie the parties had a skirmish and some rencontres rather dangerous, and showed bravery on both sides. The Indians acted like warriors. The sergeant in command was wounded, and Moses Short, a brother of the Captain, received a ball, which lodged in a twist of tobacco, which he had in his pocket — the horse of Mr. Short was wounded. The Indians maintained their ground, but it was supposed that two of their number were killed. An express, William Stout, was dispatched with all possible speed to the camp for a recruit, of men. When Captain Short received the report, he, and all the forces he could muster, about thirty, were in their saddles, the same evening, in pursuit of the Indians. The rangers forced on and pursued the trail all that evening and night, until seven or eight o'clock next morning, before they reached the enemy. It was on a fork of the little Wabash, seventy or eighty miles. from Lively's cabins, where Short reached the Indians. An Indian behind, as a guard, saw a turkey, and as they were starving shot it, which gave the alarm to the whites. It is supposed that the Indians might have escaped, but they presumed that they could whip off the rangers again, as they had before. The Indian that shot the turkey ran up to the others, and all prepared for battle, but the whites surrounded and killed every one of them. It is said that when they saw they were to be all killed


they sung the death song and disregarded the issue. They all died nobly, shouting defiance at the whites. William O'Neal was killed when he was taking aim at an Indian. Some of the whites were slightly wounded. This was among the last tragic scenes of the war, and closed it in this section of the State. Many of the horses of the rangers died from extreme swift pursuit of the Indians. The stolen horses were recaptured.

About the first of May, 1813, Governor Clark, of St. Louis, organized a flotilla of large barges, manned by fifty regular soldiers, under command of Captain Perkins, and one hundred and forty volunteers, under command of Captains Kennerly, Sullivan, and other officers. Governor Clark commanded the expedition which left St. Louis and reached Prairie du Chien in safety. The Governor, on the 13th of June, returned to St. Louis, leaving the troops to erect forts and maintain their position. About twenty days before the arrival of the troops at the Prairie, the famous Dixon had left that point for Canada with a great number of Indian warriors, and the Americans were permitted in peace to commence building the forts. The fort at Prairie du Chien was called Fort Shelby, in honor of the Governor of Kentucky. In a short time, a large force of Indians and British appeared and captured the fort and a part of the American troops.

After the return of the troops under Captain Sullivan and others, General Howard ordered another expedition by water to Prairie du Chien. The expedition was commanded by Lieutenant Campbell of the regular army. About the first of July, three barges, well fortified, with forty-two regulars and sixty six rangers, set sail from St. Louis for Prairie du Chien. Lieut. Campbell commanded the boat with the regulars, and Captain Stephen Rector and Lieutenant Riggs the other two barges manned by the rangers.

The expedition reached Rock Island in peace; but the Sac and Fox Indians, in great numbers, swarmed around the boats, but still professed peace. The barge commanded by Rector, was navigated mostly by the French of Cahokia, and were both good sailors and soldiers; and the same may be said of the company under Lieut. Riggs, except as to the knowledge of navigation.

The boats lay still all night, at or near the Sac and Fox villages at Rock Island, and the Indians were all night making hollow professions of friendship. Many of the French, after the battle, informed me that they knew the Indians would attack the boats, and accordingly they informed Lieutenant Campbell, but he disbelieved them. The French said that the Indians wanted them to leave the Americans and go home. They would squeeze the hands of the French, and pull their hands down the river, indicating to leave. The Indians disliked to fight their old friends, the French.


The fleet all set sail in the morning, and above Rock Island the wind blew so hard that Campbell's boat was forced on a lee shore, and lodged on a small island near the main-land, known from this circumstance as "Campbell's Island." The Indians, commanded by Black Hawk, when the wind drifted the boat on shore, commenced an attack on it. The boats of Rector and Riggs were ahead, and could see the smoke of the firearms, but could not hear the report of the guns. They returned to assist Campbell, but the wind was so high that their barges were almost unmanageable. They anchored near Campbell, but could not reach him, the storm raged so severely,

When Campbell's boat was driven ashore by the wind, he placed out sentinels, and the men commenced cooking their breakfast, but the enemy, in hundreds, rushed on them, killing many on the spot, and the rest took refuge in the boat. Hundreds and hundreds of the warriors were in and around the boat, and at last set it on fire. Campbell's boat was burning, and the bottom covered with the dead, the wounded, and blood. They had almost ceased firing, when Rector and his brave men most nobly came to the rescue. Campbell himself lay wounded on his back in the bottom of his boat, and many of his men dead and dying around him. Riggs boat was well fortified, but his men were inexperienced sailors. Rector and company could not remain inactive spectators of the destruction of Campbell and men, but in a tempest of wind raised their anchor in the face of almost a thousand Indians, and periled their lives in the rescue of Campbell. No act of noble daring and bravery surpassed the rescue of Campbell, during the war in the West. The rangers under Rector were mostly Frenchmen, and were well acquainted with the management of a boat in such a crisis. Rector and his men were governed by the high and ennobling principles of chivalry and patriotism. Rector's boat was lightened by the casting overboard quantities of provisions, and then many of the crew actually got out of the boat into the; water, leaving the vessel between them and the fire of the enemy, and pushed their boat against the fire of the warriors to Campbell's boat, which was in possession of the Indians. This was a most hazardous exploit for forty men forcing their barge to a burning boat in possession of the enemy, nearly a thousand strong, and taking from it the wounded and living soldiers, together with their commander.

A salt-water sailor by the name of Hoadley, did gallant, service in this daring enterprise, by his superior knowledge of the management of a vessel. Rector took all the live men from Campbell's boat into his, and his men, in the water, hauled their own boat out into the stream. The Indians feasted on the abandoned boat of Campbell. Rector had his boat crowded with the wounded and dying, but rowed night and day until


they reached St. Louis. It was supposed the boat of Riggs was captured by the enemy, but the vessel was strongly fortified so that it lay, as it were, in the hands of the Indians for several hours, the enemy having possession of the outside, and the whites of the inside, but the wind in the evening subsided, and Riggs got his boat off without losing many men. It was a general jubilee and rejoicing when Riggs arrived at St. Louis. The hearts of the people swelled with patriotic joy to know that the lives of so many brave soldiers were saved by the courage and energies of Rector, Riggs, and their troops. I saw the soldiers on their return to St. Louis, and the sight was distressing. Those who were not wounded were worn down to skeletons by labor and fatigue.

After the above disaster, Major Taylor, afterward President of the United States, was appointed to the command of another expedition on the Mississippi, and on the 12th August, 1814, he sailed from St. Louis with eight barges and four hundred and fifty men, forty of whom were regulars and the rest rangers and volunteers. The object of this expedition was to establish a fort in the heart of the Indian country, and maintain it. The other two expeditions had failed, and the present was fitted out with much care and foresight. I had two brothers in it, but did not go myself. Captains Vale, Samuel Whiteside, Nelson Rector, Hempstead, and other officers commanded boats. Nothing uncommon occurred until they reached Rock Island, where they met British soldiers, cannons, and swarms of Indians. The British had captured our garrison at Prairie du Chien, and had the whole country in possession north of the settlements near the present city of Alton.

Our white enemy was at Rock Island with many regulars, six pieces of cannon, and hordes of Indian warriors. Major Taylor, with his usual sound judgment, anchored his fleet out in the Mississippi, about one-half mile above the mouth of Rock River, and not far from three willow islands. It was supposed that the British had ordered the Indians to occupy these islands in great numbers in the night, as they swarmed with the red warriors at daylight. The British had, in the night, planted cannon in battery at the edge of the water, so as to destroy our boats in the morning. It was the British calculation that the cannon would destroy our boats, and the men would have to swim to the islands, where the Indians would kill them. It is almost impossible to circumvent the Americans. Taylor ordered all his forces, except twenty men on each boat, to proceed to the islands and destroy the Indian warriors on them. This order was executed with great vigor and efficiency, and the Indians were either killed or drove down to the lower island. In the meantime, the British cannon opened a tremendous fire on our boats, that caused the soldiers to rush back


to the boats to save them from the cannon-balls which were piercing them in every direction. British officers were seen mounted on horseback giving command to the cannonades, and many regulars and hundreds of Indians obeying. The boats were unable to resist the cannon, and almost every shot told on them. In the battle, some Indian canoes were seen on the lower island, and Captain Rector was ordered with some men to scour the island. He did so, and drove the Indians back into the willows, but the enemy reinforced, and in turn drove Rector back to the sand beach again. In this sortie from his boat, Rector was elegantly dressed in military costume, with a towering feather in his cap, and a sword drawn, leading his men to the charge. In this exposed situation, with hundreds of guns fired at him, he moved on undaunted as if he were in his messroom with his comrades. The Rector family never knew what fear was.

The boats under Taylor were ordered to retreat down the river, but just as Rector's boat got under way, it grounded and stuck fast. The Indians surrounded it, and it was with the utmost hard fighting they were kept out. All the boats had left except Captain Samuel Whiteside, who saw the imminent danger of Rector, with true courage and kindness of heart, returned to save his brother soldiers. If Whiteside had not returned, Rector and all his men were doomed to destruction. Rector's boat being saved, all descended the river until they were out of the reach of the cannon, when Major Taylor called a council of his officers.

It was ascertained that there were more than a thousand Indians at and near Rock Island, and a detachment of British regulars, with six field-pieces; and the effective American soldiers were only three hundred and thirty-four in number. This showed the force of the enemy to be more than three to one over the Americans. Under all circumstances, it was considered imprudent and improper to attack such superior forces, and the whole fleet descended the river to the site where Warsaw now stands. At this point, Fort Edwards was built, and Fort Johnson, a few miles above, was burnt.

After the erection of Fort Edwards, the troops remained three or four weeks, but the major part of them descended the river to St. Louis, and were discharged the 18th of October, 1814. Thus ended this expedition, which pretty much closed the war in the West. Scarcely any further Indian depredations were committed, and the troops were generally disbanded. On the 24th December, 1814, peace was concluded at Ghent, in Europe, but the act was not known for some months thereafter. I saw in the harbor of St. Louis the boats that were in Taylor's battle, at Rock Island, and they were riddled with the cannon balls. I think the balls were made of lead — at any rate they pierced the boats considerably.


In these engagements many of the enemy were killed, but the exact number could never be ascertained. The number of American soldiers, and particularly those on Campbell's boat, who were killed, could not be truly ascertained.

Chapter XXXII.

The Government of Illinois. — Judges Revised the Statute Laws. — Duties of Governor Edwards. — Amusements of Courts. — Scotfs Trick on McMahon at Cahokia. — Illinois Territory Established. — Counties Created. — Second Grade of Government Adopted. — First Legislature. — The General Assembly Sat Annually at Kaskaskia. — Delegates to Congress.

BY the ordinance of 1787, there was provided for two classes or grades of territorial government. The first grade gave the governor and judges the entire power of government. The second vested the power in the hands of the people. In the last-mentioned grade, the members of the legislature were elected by the people, but the governor possessed an absolute veto-power. The council, or upper branch of the general assembly was, in some cases, selected by the President from double the proper number elected by the people. In olden times, a property qualification was necessary to enable anyone to vote. He must possess fifty acres of land or a lot in a town.

At a court in Cahokia, in olden times, a great crowd of people remained there all night, and the hotel, kept by E. Pensoneau, was filled to overflowing. One-half of this collection could not procure beds, and many did not want any. Robert McMahon, Esq., a judge of the court, and rather a dignified character, was anxious to obtain a bed, and not to sit up all night with the wild, frolicking party. Jehu Scott, an old settler and neighbor of McMahon, told him he could get him a bed, but he must go to it soon to keep others out of it. McMahon readily agreed to it, and would retire immediately. The wife of the landlord, E. Pensoneau, was sick in bed in a private room, and in the room there was not much light. Scott got McMahon slyly into the room of the sick woman, and told him to take his clothes of without noise, so the others would not know it. Scott so timed it, that about the time McMahon would get his clothes off, he would tell Pensoneau there was a man in bed with his wife.

When McMahon entered the room, and was taking his clothes off, Mrs. Pensoneau thought he was her husband, and said nothing, but as soon as he entered the bed and came in contact with her, she discovered the mistake, and so also did McMahon. At this crisis, Scott had so fixed it that Pensoneau entered his wife's bedroom with a light. He was an irritable Frenchman,


and understood very little English. He in reality believed McMahon was in bed with his wife, and made a terrible noise and bluster about it. He found McMahon with his clothes off, and commenced without ceremony to chastise him. He and the wife both laid on McMahon without stint, and banged him about the room in a furious style. By this time, Scott had all the wild, merry crowd at the room-door to witness the fun. All three, McMahon, Pensoneau, and his wife, were in a horrid fracas within the room, all shouting, scrambling, and fighting in terrible confusion. McMahon was trying to explain, but Pensoneau did not understand, in the scuffle, his English explanations, and blustered on. At last, McMahon was forced out of the room naked, and abandoned his clothes and dignity. He ran to the crowd for protection, and to save himself from the fury of the landlord and wife. Never was such a farce enacted since Don Juan was whipped out of the bedroom of Donna Julia, in Spain. This was backwoods' merriment, and afforded the audience great amusement. The spectators laughed and shouted at the sport. In due time, the affair was explained to the satisfaction of all concerned, except Justice McMahon, who would prefer Scott to perpetrate his tricks on others and let him alone.

Justice Scott was a most excellent man, kind and benevolent to all, and withal was gifted by nature with good abilities, but possessed, in an eminent degree, an extraordinary talent and disposition for amusement and backwoods' frolics. He came to Illinois in early times, and raised an excellent, moral, and respectable family. These frolics and amusements were the custom of the times at that day, and almost all classes joined in them — as well my humble self as others. This class of amusement is not now as common as in former days. The most common entertainment at this day, 1855, is acquiring wealth, and adding acres of land to the premises.

On the 9th of February, 1809, the Territory of Illinois was established by act of Congress, and Ninian Edwards, of Kentucky, appointed governor. Nathaniel Pope was appointed secretary of state, and Jesse B. Thomas, William Sprigg, and Alexander Stuart, United States judges for the Territory. The new government was organized, and the laws of the Indiana; Territory were adopted by the Governor and Judges.

The Governor, on the 14th February, 1812, issued a proclamation for an election for or against a second grade of territorial, government. The election was to be holden in the counties, on the first Monday of April, 1812, and the two succeeding days, and a large majority of the votes were cast for the second grade of government.

On the 16th of September, of the same year, the Governor and Judges established the counties of Madison, Johnson, Pope,


and Gallatin, and on the same day, an election for members was ordered to be holden in each county, on the 8th of October and the two succeeding days.

The first general assembly held in Illinois, convened the 25th November, of this year, at Kaskaskia, which was the seat of government. Although the Indian war raged in Illinois during this year, nevertheless, the political government of the country was attended to. Governor Edwards made an active and efficient chief magistrate.

The first legislative assembly of Illinois contained only five senators and seven members of the house of representatives, and one door-keeper attended to both houses. It is said, they all boarded at the same public-house, and lodged in the same room. They did not sit long, but passed many wholesome laws,

At a subsequent legislature, a report was made by the committee on finance, that the revenue imposed from taxes between the 1st of November, 1811, and the 8th of the same month, 1814, was $4875,47. Of this sum, $2516.89 had been paid into the treasury, and $2378.47 remained in the hands of the delinquent sheriffs to be paid over. These facts present Illinois, in 1812, in a nutshell; and little did the people of that day expect to hear the State of Illinois, as it is in 1855, called, with reason, "the Empire State of the West," or see her population almost a million and a-half, and her railroads intersecting over every section of the country.

In the session of the legislature of 1812, Edwards County was established, and called Edwards in respect to the Governor. In the session of 1815 and 1816, the counties of White, Jackson, and Monroe were established.

In 1816 and 1817, the banking system commenced. The Illinois Bank, at Shawneetown, and the Edwardsville Bank were chartered, and both went into operation. They were made deposit-banks for the United States money. About 1820, they both failed, and did not answer the object of their creation.

In 1817 and 1818, the Bank of Cairo was chartered, and connected with the project of building a large city at Cairo. Many respectable gentlemen were connected with this scheme, and a large city was to be the result. Every intelligent person at that day decided that a great city must at some day exist at this point — but at that time, almost, forty years back, the whole West, and particularly the State of Illinois, was poor and weak, but the time, in all human probability, has now arrived when a. great Western city will be built at Cairo.

The territorial legislature of Illinois sat every year at Kaskaskia, and held short sessions. I never attended them, except once or twice, when I had business at Kaskaskia, when they were in session.

The delegates in Congress from the territory of Illinois were


all worthy and respectable characters. Shadrach Bond was elected the first delegate in Congress in 1812. This gentleman was also the first governor of the State, and possessed a character of high standing, and of great moral worth. Wisdom and integrity shed a beacon-light around his path through life, showing him to be one of "the noblest works of God." These adorning traits of character, wisdom, and integrity, together with other noble qualities, gave Gov. Bond a high standing with his contemporaries. Benjamin Stephenson was elected a delegate in 1814, and made a respectable and worthy member. Nathaniel Pope was elected a delegate to Congress in 1816, and rendered probably as much valuable service, in that body, to advance the best interest of Illinois, as any member ever did from that day to the present. He procured the northern boundary of the State to be extended north from the southern bend of Lake Michigan to the latitude of 42 deg. 30 min. north. He obtained, also, the act of Congress to enable the people of the territory to form a State Government when we had only forty thousand inhabitants.

Chapter XXXIII.

Miscellaneous. — Expedition of Lewis and Clark to the Pacific Ocean. — The Cold Friday in 1805. — A Tornado in 1805. — The Author Studied the French Language. — Names of Places. — How they Originated.

IN 1803, when the United States acquired Louisiana, President Jefferson decided, with the approbation of Congress, to explore the country between the Mississippi River and the Pacific Ocean, and he appointed Captain Merriweather Lewis and Lieutenant William Clark to take command of the exploring party. This small body of explorers, thirty-four in number, encamped during the winter of 1803 and 1804 in the American Bottom, within the limits of the present Madison County, not far from the mouth of Wood River, and there prepared for the arduous duty to visit the Pacific Ocean.

On the 14th May, 1804, the party set sail on the Missouri River, and passed the first winter at the Mandon Village of Indians. From this place many of the men were sent back, and only thirty-odd marched under Lewis and Clark to the Pacific Ocean. With much difficulty the Rocky Mountains were passed, and on the 17th November, 1805, the party reached the main ocean. On the 27th March, 1806, they commenced the march home, and reached St. Louis in the fall. I recollect there was much rejoicing in the country for their safe return.

In the winter of 1805, occurred what was known all over the


West as "the cold Friday." I resided then with my father near Kaskaskia, and even in that latitude it was a most extraordinary day. I had not, at that time, ever seen a thermometer, and perhaps there was not one in the country. The degrees of cold I could not state, but this day was uniformly recognized as "the cold Friday" throughout the country.

On the 5th June, 1805, a terrific hurricane swept over a part of Illinois. It was one of those tempests or whirlwinds, which at intervals occur and desolate the country where it passes. This tornado proceeded with much violence in its course from the south-west to the north-east, and crossed the Mississippi about a mile below the mouth of the Merrimack River. It was about three-fourths of a mile wide, and to that extent it destroyed every living creature, and prostrated every tree in its course. It swept the water out of the Mississippi and lakes in the American Bottom, and scattered the fish in every direction on the dry land. William Blair had a boat moored near it, and saw the water of the river raised up in the air and dashed about with the greatest violence. This tempest passed over the country about one o'clock, and the day before it was clear and pleasant. Persons who saw it informed me that it at first appeared a terrible large black column moving high in the air, and whirling round with great violence; as it approached, its size and the terrific roaring attending it increased. It appeared as if innumerable small birds were flying with it in the air; but as it approached nearer, the supposed birds were limbs and branches of trees, propelled with the storm. As the tornado approached, it became darker, and in the passage of the tempest, perfect and profound darkness prevailed, without any show of light whatever. Dr. Carnes and family resided in the direct line of the storm, and when he saw it approaching him and family, with the certainty of destruction if he remained in his house, he caught up his children and escaped its worst violence. His wife was in the vortex more than the Doctor, and fared worse. She was wounded in the head, but saved herself by holding on to a bush and prostrating herself on the earth. The stock of the Doctor was all destroyed. A bull was raised high in the air and dashed to pieces. A rail was run through a horse in his yard. The violence of the tornado was so great that it tore up the sills of the house in which the Doctor resided, and left not a stone on the ground where the stone chimney to the house had stood before the passage of the storm. The papers, books, and clothes of the Doctor were strewed for several miles around, by the force of the tornado. The violence of this storm mostly subsided after it passed over the Mississippi Bluff. It struck the bluff about the place where the line dividing the counties of St. Clair and Monroe crosses the bluff. No storm ever occurred in Illinois, in the memory of


man, to equal the above. These great convulsions of nature occur but seldom, but when they do, they teach man a lesson of his weakness and dependence on the Creator.

In the winter of 1812, and at other spare intervals from the ranging service, I studied, and learned well the French language. I was then fresh from the college, and was a good Latin scholar. I found the French language not at all difficult to learn in the books; but to speak it, and understand it when it was spoken, was much more difficult, and required much time and practice to accomplish, but by continual practice for years, I become well acquainted with it, and used it mostly in my intercourse with my family for sixteen or eighteen years. The French is a most agreeable and fascinating language in domestic circles, and seems to be peculiar in the advancement of the pleasures and happiness of social and convivial assemblies.

The names of certain localities frequently arise by singular circumstances. In very early times in Illinois, about the year 1780, Shadrack Bond, and some other Americans, as they were then called by the French, located on the alluvial low lands of the Mississippi, between Kaskaskia and Cahokia, and the French and others gave this large tract of country the name of the "American Bottom," which it has retained to this day. The name, and particularly the tract of country embraced by, the name, is known all over the Union as a region of country containing the largest extent of fertile soil in one body of any other in America. It extends from Alton almost to Chester, nearly one hundred miles long, and averages five or six miles wide. It is of alluvial formation, made by the Mississippi, and presents a soil of inexhaustible fertility. Another settlement, the "New Design," situated a few miles south of the present town of Waterloo, Monroe County, received its name from the patriarch and noble pioneer, Rev. James Leman, Sr. About the year 1786, Mr. Leman was residing in the American Bottom, and observed that he had a new design, to make a settlement south of Belle Fountaine, which is near the present Waterloo. The public, from this circumstance, called it the "New Design Settlement." This was, at one day, the largest American colony in Illinois — commenced by Mr. Leman under the above circumstances.

Turkey Hill Settlement was commenced by another worthy and respectable patriarch, William Scott, Sr., in the year 1798, and a considerable colony was formed around it. The name "Turkey Hill," in French, Cote d'Indie, was given to this beautiful and commanding elevation by the French so early that "the memory of man runneth not to the contrary," in Illinois. Turkey Hill was, for ages past, a favorite camping-ground for the Indians; and the traders frequently at this point exchanged goods for the peltries and furs of the red man. It is situated in


St. Clair County, about three miles south-east of Belleville, and an be seen from some sections of the country at a distance of thirty or forty miles.

"Whiteside's Station" was another conspicuous point, and around it were formed some settlements. William Whiteside, a brave and efficient defender of his country from Indian depredations and a soldier who fought at the battle of King's Mountain settled this place in the year 1792, and made it what it was "a station," or fort, to defend the inhabitants from the attacks of hostile Indians. Whiteside had a son killed almost in the yard of this station by the Indians. The station is situated on the ancient road from Kaskaskia to Cahokia, between the present towns of Waterloo and Columbia, in Monroe County.

The Belle Fontaine was another famous position, named by the French, and at it was once a town laid out. It was settled by James Moore, Sen'r, in the year 1781. Mr. Moore's was about the first, perhaps was quite the first American family, that settled on the high land of Illinois, between Prairie du Rocher and Cahokia. Mr. Moore was a brave, energetic pioneer, whose respectable and worthy posterity in Illinois is very large.

Chapter XXXIV.

Sketch of the Author's Life. — Acting for Himself. — First Practice of the Law. — Traffic in Land. — Merchandise. — Conveyance of Money from Vincennes to St. Louis. — Small Law-Library.

IN the winter and spring of 1814, I established a very humble and obscure law-office in the French village of Cahokia. This town was then the seat of justice of St. Clair County, which was the largest and most wealthy county in the territory. But the main inducement which caused me to settle in Cahokia; was a relative of mine, Joseph A. Beaird, Esq., who resided there, and was a benevolent and excellent man; He was wealthy, respectable, and possessed considerable standing in society. I made his house my home, and rented a room in the village for my office. I knew it was a pleasure for him to entertain me, or otherwise I would not have lived with him.

When I commenced "on my own resources," I had not one cent of money or scarcely any books or clothes. I had a horse, but not a decent saddle or bridle. I had not then received any Pay for my ranging services, and was literally enjoying life and happiness without a dollar in my pocket. It is true I had credit in a small manner. I was like the man's oxen: he said "they were strong in light work." My credit was strong in small sums. All my law-books could have been easily packed


in a common carpet-bag; they were all put on the mantel-piece over the fireplace in my rented room, and did not fill it.

I had a press of business all the time from 1814, while I remained in the practice of the law and in the traffic of land — as much as I could perform. I was exceedingly industrious and active. I was young, ardent, and I think energetic. Labor, mental or physicial, was a pleasure to me. I saw I must "do or die," and laid on in true good earnest. My first attempt to address the court in Belleville, before his honor Judge Thomas, was disagreeable and painful, and I acquitted myself very much to my dissatisfaction and discredit generally. I had no doubt the public, who did not know me intimately, concluded, on witnessing this exhibition, that I never could succeed as a lawyer — I feared it myself. A person where he has been raised, and that in an humble and obscure condition, labors under great disadvantages when he attempts to embrace a learned profession. The Saviour himself complained of his situation in this respect. Mahomet did the same. A prophet stands better abroad than he does in his native land. I laughed with the others at my failure, but was determined to do better. I considered my honor and character at stake, and that was more important to me than bread. In Madison County, I experienced nearly the same fate, and the public doubted my success. By repeated efforts and many failures, together with my old antidote, a savage self-will to succeed, enabled, me to experience less pain and more success in my practice. But the main profitable business I did in these four years was the commerce in land. The whole country was improving fast; immigration was flowing rapidly in, and bank paper was circulating in great abundance. Under these circumstances, land increased greatly in value in a short time, and was salable. With my knowledge of the country, and use of the compass, I soon ascertained the best selections of land, and with my partner, Mr. Beaird, who was wealthy, I did some considerable business in the land commerce. One thing we observed with scrupulous exactness — never to deal in land the title of which was bad or doubtful. I never in my life had to respond to the failure of the title of any land which I warranted.

In the commencement of these four years, I surveyed private lands considerable, and made some money at the business. In this manner I acted in my commencement of life, and did well. I used great industry and economy, and found these companions through life to be my friends, "the kindest and the best." In these four years I speculated, sold land, and bought two stores of dry goods, amounting to ten thousand dollars. The land and goods were rated at high prices. But when I was appointed judge, I ceased my land speculations, and entered another field of more trouble and less profit.


In 1815, I was in Vincennes on business, and undertook to convey twenty-six thousand dollars in bank notes, from pay-master Hempstead to Major Douglass, in St. Louis, who was also a United States' pay-master. There was no settlement, at that day, between Vincennes and the Kaskaskia River. I waited some days in Vincennes for the bank to arrange the money for me. I had two trusty Frenchmen with me to guard us. The first night we lay out the horses were alarmed, and we feared that we should be robbed. It was known in Vincennes that we had the money. Upon my arrival in St. Louis, I handed the money to Major Douglass, who wanted me to remain in the office while he counted it. I told him it was all there I got of Major Hempstead, and that if it was too little I could not make it up, and if too much he might have it. He laughed, and I left the room — glad of it.

I scarcely ever attended an election, at that day, or knew or cared anything about politics or the government of the country. As heretofore stated, I had an inherent distaste and contempt for the business of electioneering, and had not the most distant idea of any office whatever for myself.

Chapter XXXV.

Extension of the Settlements. — Improvements. — Agriculture. — Commerce. — Commerce to New Mexico.

ALTHOUGH during the war, the settlements did not much extend their borders, yet the population and wealth of the country increased. War is not so alarming after the people become accustomed to it; so that the country improved even when the enemy was lurking around the frontiers. But when peace was established, the country grew up almost like Jonah's gourd, in one night.

Mr. Coop and family, in the spring of 1815, broke through the old Indian frontier of Madison County, and settled in the limits of the present county of Macoupin. Thomas Carlin, afterward governor of the State, Thomas Rollin, and many others, located in that beautiful and picturesque country, around the present Carrollton.

In 1819 and 1820, the Sangamon country became famous for its beauty of surface and fertility of soil, and hundreds settled in it. At the same time, many also settled around the Diamond Grove, and other localities in the present county of Morgan. The colonies extended on the Kaskaskia River above the site of the present Carlyle.

In the interior, the settlements composing the counties of Washington, Jefferson, Hamilton, and the adjacent counties,


were commenced. Governor Casey, then a young man, with his family, settled in 1816, near the present town of Mt. Vernon, and lived in a camp the first winter. Colonies were also formed on the Wabash River, and extended up above Vincennes.

The country increased in population with unparalleled rapidity, so that at the formation of the State Government, in 1818, there were more than forty thousand inhabitants in the Territory, while in 1810, there were only 12,284, making an increase of upwards of 27,718 in eight years.

It will be recollected that it was stated in a former chapter, that there were only six counties in the Territory in 1812, when the first General Assembly convened at Kaskaskia, but in 1818, there were fifteen counties in all.

At the formation of the State Government in 1818, four-fifths of the State was a wilderness, and the settlements confined to the southern section of the State, and mostly on the margins of the great rivers.

Agriculture assumed a better standing and efficiency than heretofore. The horse-race tracks were converted into corn-fields, and the rifle exchanged for the plough. Hunting was abandoned, and churches, school-houses, and civilization took their places. The farmers commenced to raise stock for exportation. Hogs and cattle grew in the river-bottoms without much care or expense, and yielded a rich reward to the husbandman. Horses were also raised for exportation, and money flowed into the country through these various channels to repay manifold the farmer. The country was new, and the range was excellent, so that stock was raised as above stated, without much expense or trouble. The Ohio drovers expended considerable money in the country for cattle. Commerce also commenced, and existed in direct proportion to the increase of the products of the country.

Steamboats in 1817, visited St. Louis, and the overland commerce to Santa Fe was increased. The ancient channels of commerce were more crowded with produce, and the country was abundantly prosperous and happy for many years after the war of 1812, with Great Britian.

In connection with the Santa Fe trade, it is due to history to state that Colonel William Morrison, of Kaskaskia, was the first who laid the foundation of the commerce across the plains from the Mississippi Valley to New Mexico. He was an early pioneer, and immigrated from Philadelphia to Kaskaskia in the year 1790. He soon occupied, in the valley of the Mississippi, the grand and lofty position in commerce for which nature had designed him. He possessed a strong mind and great energy, and exerted his great abilities in the commerce throughout the Western Valley. In 1804, he embarked in the trade across the plains to Santa Fe, and also supplied merchandise to a great


portion of the inhabitants and retail dealers both in Illinois and upper Louisiana. Not only was he distinguished for commercial enterprise, but he also took the lead in many of the great and useful improvements of his day. He built two magnificent bridges over the Kaskaskia River — one at Covington, Washington County, and the other at Kaskaskia. He was possessed of a princely fortune, and with it at his command, together with his intelligent and enlightened views of public policy, he was a great and useful benefactor to his country.

Many other merchants of olden times possessed also efficient talents and great enterprise. Colonel Peter Menard and General John Edgar, of Kaskaskia, were, in the early settlement of the country, efficient and conspicious operators in the commerce of the Mississippi Valley.

Chapter XXXVI.

Regulators in Illinois. — Regulating Company Organized in St Clair Co. — Mob-Law in 1831, on the Ohio River. — In Edgar County Lynch-Law was Established. — In Ogle County a Horrid Tragedy was Enacted in 1841. — A Case in Madison County. — Cases in Pope and Massac Counties in 1846. — Public Opinion should Condemn Mob-Law.

SOME time after the close of the late war with Great Britian, the country was flooded with bank-notes, good, bad, and indifferent. Many counterfeit notes were in circulation. This evil caused many good citizens of St. Clair County to organize a Regulating Company, as they styled themselves, and Dr. Estes, of Belleville, was elected Captain. This company was established in 1815, and remained in existence only a few months. In direct violation of law and the rights of the citizens, they undertook to execute punishment on those who were supposed by the company to be guilty of making or passing counterfeit money, or any other crime.

The organization of this company, and the punishment they inflicted on certain citizens, whom they were satisfied were guilty, created great excitement in the country, and in the end public opinion condemned it.

On Silver Creek, and other places, punishment was inflicted indiscriminately, and some were ordered to leave the country.

This was the first attempt to introduce Lynch-law in the country, but the same misfortune, no doubt based on good and pure motives by many engaged in it, has been visited on the people of Illinois at other periods of their history.

In 1831, on the Ohio River, in Illinois, a mob-spirit prevailed, and a fort which was erected by the suspected persons was taken


by storm, and three of the inmates killed. One of the regulators was also killed, and the suspected gang broken up. The leaders of the gang in the fort were known as the Sturdevants. Not long after, another court, governed by the law of force, known as the Lynch-law, was opened in Edgar County, in this State and some suspected persons were whipped and driven out of the country.

The most horrid and outrageous tragedy occured in Ogle Country, in the year 1841, where several men were murdered under the proceedings of the mob law.

It is stated that a band of bad men existed in this country, near or in the White Rock Grove, and they were ordered to leave the country. Some of the gang were in the jail, and their friends burnt the court house in order that the inmates of the jail might escape. Great excitement prevailed; and Campbell, the Captain of the regulators, was killed. This still enraged the citizens, and a cry was raised against the murderers, who could not be found; but an old man, named Driscoll, and his two sons, were taken as accessories to the murder. After a trial of a whole day, before three hundred of an excited populace as judges and jurors, the old man, Driscoll, and one of his sons, were sentenced to be shot within one hour. A minister of the gospel administered the consolation of religion to the men about to be murdered. What a wicked perversion of the New Testament! The unfortunate men were placed in a praying position, and were fired upon by the whole three hundred regulators. This was done that none could be witnesses against the others. It is said also that about one hundred of these regulators were tried for murder and all acquitted.

At a late day, in Madison County, Illinois, a suspected man resided near Collinsville, and a company of regulators was formed for his punishment. He was found fishing in a lake in the American Bottom, and shot. He wounded some of the regulators, but not mortally. Many of the regulators were tried for murder; their trial was moved to another county, and they were finally acquitted.

In the counties of Massac and Pope, in the year 1846, for several months the citizens were kept in constant alarm and excitement by two organized parties, known as "Regulators," and "Moderators." The only difference in this outrage on the laws, from the others above noticed, was that the parties were nearly equal; each side claimed to be honest citizens, and denounced their opponents as rogues. The Lovejoy mob, at Alton, the mob of the Mormon war, and the non-execution of the Fugitive-Slave Law, at Chicago, will be noticed hereafter.

I have presented the above cases of mob-violence to the public for their consideration. Although, on many occasions, good and honest men were engaged in the regulating companies,


yet they committed great crimes by the violation of the laws constitution of the country. In every point of view it is wrong to violate the law, and nothing is more dangerous to the free institutions of our country than many acts performed under the fascinating delusion "of running the rogues out the country." It is similar to a physician killing his patient to cure him. An unpopular sect of religionists, like the Mormons, may be run of by an infuriated mob. All that we hold dear and sacred, even religion itself, our sheet-anchor of happiness here and hereafter, may be destroyed by an unthinking, senseless mob. It is the laws and constitution that make us a free people, and give this Republic such a standing as it now has all over the civilized world. Permit the whole country to adopt the mob-law doctrine and our happiness, and the Union itself, would not exist one single year.

Some unthinking men say that Lynch-law may do good in some extreme cases, and on such occasions justify this mob-spirit. As well might these men say: a government is good, except in extreme cases, when it is better to have no government, but permit the lawless passions of men to govern the country.

Those engaged in this mob-law, take the ground that man is not capable of self-government; that the laws of the country are insufficient, and the administration of them impotent and cannot accomplish,the object of government. This is the acted argument of monarchy; it is the silent, forcible language of tyranny and oppression; and although good, honest men may, at times, engage in these regulating mobs, yet their actions are tyranny and oppression, not only on their fellow-men, but against the sacred laws and Constitution of the country.

The regulators assume the right to be wiser and better than the community, and can govern the country better than the constituted government itself. Many good-meaning men do not reflect that they are, in this unholy crusade, the worst enemies to the country, by trampling under foot the laws they themselves have enacted. The crazy fanatic may consider himself doing God a service when he is burning his brother-man at the stake, which has been frequently witnessed in ancient times. The same spirit that burnt human beings at the stake, to rid the world of heretics, is actuating the regulators to rid the country of bad men. The trial by jury, the habeas corpus act, and all the blessings of freedom and civil liberty, by this mob-law are trampled under foot, and an infuriated rabble of irresponsible men are not satisfied until blood is shed and the laws broken.

There is no case where Lynch-law or mob-violence can be Justified, and every good citizen should have the moral courage to speak out aloud to the public in condemnation of this course. An enlightened and correct public opinion can destroy this


misrule and disgrace to our free institutions; nothing else, under a free government, can; and I appeal to it, with confidence, to correct this great evil.

Chapter XXXVII.

Early Religion in Illinois. — The Roman Catholic Denomination. — The Jesuit Missionaries Founded Kaskaskia and Cahokia. — The Rev. Mr. Oliver, of Prairie du Rocher. — The Creed of the Roman Catholic Church. — Christian Creeds are Substantially the Same. — Roman Catholic Statistics.

THE Roman Catholic missionaries were the first white men that planted the standard of the Cross in the Mississippi Valley, and around their missionary stations, where they instructed the Indians, assembled the first white population. These missionaries were talented and efficient bearers of the Cross, and traversed all sections of the West, from Canada to New Orleans, to Christianize the savages. They were the first who erected Christian churches in Illinois, and preached the gospel to the people.

The Rev. James Marquette was the first Christian missionary who explored the country, in the year 1673, and extended his travels to the Arkansas. The Rev. Father Alloues, about the year 1682, established the first white Christian congregation in the West. This missionary station and church were erected in the Kaskaskia Indian Village, and is the same site which the village of Kaskaskia now occupies, in Randolph County. About the same time, Father Pinet founded a church at the Indian Village of Cahokia, which occupied the same place where Cahokia now stands.

Thus it will be seen that the first settlements in the great Valley of the West were planted in peace and Christianity, and the fruit has flourished in such an eminent degree that the country is rapidly progressing to its high destiny.

Almost the entire French population were Roman Catholics, and remain so to this day. The clergy were generally intelligent and pious men, who were also eminent scholars. They had travelled much, and had devoted their time and talents exclusively to the advancement of Christianity.

Among the most ancient American inhabitants were many Roman Catholics, who were, as well as their French neighbors, peaceable, orderly, and good citizens.

One of the ancient pioneer clergymen was the celebrated Mr. Oliver, of Prairie du Rocher, Randolph County. This Rev. Divine was a native of Italy, and was a high dignitary in the Roman Catholic Church for more than half a century. He


acquired a great reputation for his sanctity and holiness, and some believed him possessed of the power to perform small miracles, to which he made no pretensions.

In 1816, a Catholic Church was established on Prairie du Long Creek, Monroe County, and some years thereafter another a few miles south, toward Prairie du Rocher.

In 1824, a small congregation of Roman Catholics immigrated from Kentucky, and settled in Sangamon County, Illinois and many of that sect remain there to this day.

These colonies of Americans, together with the French, embraced all the Catholic congregations in Illinois in early days. At this time, many churches and congregations of Roman Catholics, composed of parts of almost all nations, are scattered throughout the length and breadth of the State. The Catholic denomination holds the fourth rank in numbers in the State — the Methodists, Baptists, and Presbyterians being the more numerous.

According to the census of 1850, the Catholic denomination in the State of Illinois possesses fifty-eight churches; can accommodate 29,000 members; and owns $229,400 worth of property. I have little doubt that the Catholic society are much larger than reported by the census.

When that narrow prejudice and ill-nature, which to such extent existed in the dark ages among sects, wears off by the light of reason and the progress of the age, the Roman Catholics, and all other denominations of religionists will be friends, and worship the great Supreme Being at the same altars. The creeds and confessions of faith of all Christian denominations are not so dissimilar as to render the devotees hostile and unfriendly to each other. The moral precepts contained in the Scriptures, by which the conduct and actions of men are governed, are the same to all, and so recognized by all the various Christian sects. The following is the creed of the Roman Catholic Church, and which, it will be discovered, is substantially the same in all the Christian churches:

"I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of Heaven and earth, of all things visible and invisible; and in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, Light of Light, true God of true God; begotten, not made; con-substantial with the Father, by whom all things were made; who for us men, and for our salvation, came down from Heaven, and was incarnated by the Holy Ghost, of the Virgin Mary, AND WAS MADE MAN: He was crucified, also, under Pontius Pilate; suffered, and was buried; and the third day. He arose again, according to the Scriptures, and he ascended into Heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of the Father; and he is to come again in glory to judge the living and the dead — of whose Kingdom there shall be no end: and in the Holy Ghost, the Lord,


the Giver of Life, who proceedeth from the Father; and the Son who spoke by the Prophets: and one Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. I confess one baptism for the remission of sins; and I look for the resurrection of the dead, and life-ever-lasting. — Amen."

It will be seen by a reference to the creeds of other Christian denominations, that the above diners not, substantially, from any other Christian creed or confession of faith. I cannot discover why it is that one faith and Christian creed is not as good as another, and all good when based on the Scriptures. When a Christian exercises his best judgment on the Scriptures, and arrives at a faith, or creed, it must be right and good as to him. No power on earth, except the person himself, has control of his conscience. This inestimable right is secured to all in the United States by the Constitution and laws of the land, and is the greatest element of our prosperity and happiness. As, therefore, no one has the right to decide on matters of faith and conscience, the creed of each Christian must be right to himself, when it is founded on the best lights in his power. Being all right, and the moral precepts being the same in the Scriptures, the actions and conduct of the various sects of Christians must be substantially the same, and all good. Under this view of the subject, it matters not what particular creed or faith any Christian may possess — all might belong to the same church. The creed of the Romish Church is considered by that sect "infallible" and perfect. They say that Providence established this church, and that St. Peter is the successor of the Saviour himself. The Protestants assume the ground that each member of the church has the right of private judgment, and can adopt the faith and creed dictated to him by his own conscience. It is quite immaterial how the person arrives at his faith, or creed, so that it is reached with honesty and sincerity.

Not only ought all Christians to be friends to one another — "love thy neighbor as thyself" — but they might all belong with propriety to the same church and worship at the same altar.

Chapter XXXVIII.

Early Methodist Denomination in Illinois. — The Rev. Joseph Lillard, First Methodist Preacher in Illinois in 1793. — The Early Clergymen. — Hosea Riggs, Benjamin Young, Chas. R. Matheny, Thomas Harrison, Jesse Walker, Peter Cartwright. — The Methodist Statistics.

THE Rev. Joseph Lillard was the first Methodist preacher, and formed the first Methodist Church in Illinois, in the year 1793. He had been a circuit-rider in Kentucky in 1790, and established the first church in the New Design Settlement, in


Illinois. In this church he appointed Captain Joseph Ogle the first class-leader in the country. Mr. Lillard was a pious, exemplary man, whose labors sowed the first seeds of Methodism in Illinois. This small commencement continued, and now the Methodist Society is the largest Christian denomination in the State.

The next permanent Methodist preacher who immigrated to the country was Hosea Riggs. He arrived in Illinois in the year 1796, and remained in the country, preaching and doing good, until the year 1841, when he died at his residence, a few miles east of Belleville, aged eighty-one years.

In 1804, Benjamin Young was the first circuit-rider who travelled in Illinois. He was appointed by the "Western Annual Conference," which extended from Pittsburg to Natchez, throughout the valley of the Mississippi. Mr. Young made his appointments at times to preach at my father's house, in Randolph County, in the year 1804, and was the first preacher I ever heard, as I recollect. He traversed the whole American settlement, and did much good. Mr. Riggs, after that time, also preached at my father's residence, in Randolph County, in 1805. These religious meetings were the first ever held in Randolph County.

The Rev. Thomas Harrison immigrated to Illinois in 1804, and has continued to preach the gospel, more or less, in Illinois for half a century or more.

Dr. Joseph Oglesby rode the circuit in Illinois in 1805, and Charles R. Matheny the next year. The latter gentleman remained in the country, filled several important offices, and died in Springfield, Illinois, leaving a highly respectable family.

The intrepid and energetic pioneer-preacher, the Rev. Jesse Walker, appeared in the country in the year 1806, and devoted his great energies to the permanent prosperity of the Methodist Church in Illinois. He was the undaunted, and a kind of Martin Luther patriarch of the Church of the West, and bore triumphantly the standard of the Cross throughout the wilderness-country, as well to the red men as the white. He was a native of the country near Petersburgh, Virginia — emigrated to North Carolina, and there embraced religion. He moved to West Tennessee in 1802, and was ordained to preach by the "Western Conference," and preached four years on the western frontiers of Kentucky and Tennessee. At his request, he was located as a preacher in Illinois, in the year 1806; and the next year, mostly by his efforts, eighty members were added to the church, which swelled it in all to two hundred and twenty members.

The next year, the celebrated Bishop McKendre visited the country as bishop, and organized various churches. During this year, 1807, two camp-meetings were held in Illinois, one at


Shiloh, in St. Clair County, and the other a few miles south of the present Edwardsville. These were the two first camp-meetings held in Illinois, and were the first I ever attended. At these meetings, Rev. Mr. Walker assisted Bishop McKendre in preaching. Several other preachers also attended these camps and preached. These protracted meetings were a new thing in the country at that early day, and attracted much attention. The greater portion of the American population of the territory attended them. The old and young, the gay and serious, all appeared on the camp-ground, and were pleased in their respective spheres. These were the largest assemblies of the people I ever saw at that day, and the novelty of the scene was very interesting to me.

The Rev. Jesse Walker located himself and family in the vicinity of Shiloh, and preached and attended the affairs of the church for many years. He was appointed elder, in 1812, of Missouri and Illinois. At one time, in this neighborhood, in St. Clair County, between thirty and forty preachers resided. Mr. Walker was exceedingly energetic, and seemed to be a missionary from on High to advance the gospel into the extended frontiers. In 1820, he appeared in St. Louis, Missouri, and became determined to plant the standard of Methodistism in that place. The Legislature was then in Session there, and many of the members advised Father Walker that it was impossible to establish a Methodist Church in St. Louis. Indomitable courage was one of the main elements in the character of Mr. Walker, and he decided, like Martin Luther, that if the tops of the houses were covered with devils, he would urge on the gospel. He once abandoned the project, but returned eighteen miles, saying: "By the grace of God I will go back to St. Louis." He procured at first a Baptist Church, but remained in it for a short time; he then rented, at his own expense, a large, unfinished building, and preached in it with much success. He also taught a school gratis. He possessed much warmth and excitability, and soon produced the same feelings in his congregation. His forte in preaching, and I have heard him often, was to arouse the passions, and thereby great excitement was produced. It was under his preaching that many of the congregation became convulsed, shouted, and had what was then called the jerks, already alluded to. In St. Louis, the negroes were the first excited, then the lower classes of the whites. He continued in his exertions until many of all classes became interested in religion, when he established a large church, where, he said, "devilism" as he called it, prevailed before. He hired, men, and with them, and his own hands, he cut the timber on the Illinois side of the Mississippi for a church in St. Louis — and it was erected there. This humble pioneer-church was known for many years as "Father-Walker's Church."


Religion may hail Jesse Walker as the first preacher who established a Methodist Church in the city of St. Louis.

The next effort of Mr. Walker was with the Indians. He had assigned to him in 1824, a circuit in the north, embracing the whites and the savages together. He established a mission among the Pottawatomie Indians, some few miles north of the present town of Ottawa, Illinois, and labored with the red men to propagate the gospel and civilization among them. He finally withdrew to Chicago, and was the first pioneer-preacher that established a church in that place. He erected a small log house near the forks of the Chicago River, and preached in it for many years. After a long period of hard service, and filled with age and honor, he breathed his last in Chicago, and was buried there. His death was considered a public bereavement, and as such, and also for his real worth, he was followed to his grave by public opinion with sincere sorrow and mournful feelings. A few years after his death, his friends disinterred his remains, and with much funeral pomp and pageantry buried him again at a small village, at which was his family burying-ground, west of Chicago. His mortal remains sleep in peace with his Methodist friends, and his soul has winged its way to the realms above. Mr. Walker was a short, well-set man, walked erect, and was possessed of great firmness, energy, and perseverance; his complexion was sallow, and his countenance gave unerring evidence that he was a sound and profound thinker; his eyes were blue, small, and piercing. He was not a profound scholar, but he studied human nature and the Scriptures until he was enabled to propagate the gospel with more success in a new country than nine-tenths of the college-educated gentry of the present day. Preaching, at this day, is conducted more by art and science than it was in former days. Mr. Walker wore the plain, unpretending garb of a pioneer Methodist-preacher. His hat was generally very large, to protect him from the sun and rain, and his coat was fashioned after the ancient and honorable Methodist mode, known then as the "straight coats." The intelligent public consider Jesse Walker one of the most efficient and useful pioneer-preachers that ever labored in the West.

Another great and substantial luminary appeared, as a pioneer-preacher in the Methodist Church of Illinois, in the person of the Rev. Peter Cartwright, of Sangamon County. Nature had bestowed on this distinguished individual many of her most choice gifts, and made him a conspicuous and great man. He Was born in Amherst County, Virginia, September, 1785; and emigrated with his father, at the close of the Revolution, to Kentucky. His father, also named Peter Cartwright, had served all through the Revolutionary War, and ended his days in the western part of Kentucky. In 1804, Mr. Cartwright was


received as a preacher by the "Western Annual Conference." He was continued a travelling circuit-rider for twenty years through the States of Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Alabama, and, in 1824, he settled in Sangamon County, Illinois. At the time he located in Illinois, north of his residence was a wilderness country, and for many years he rode the circuit through a savage wilderness, from settlement to settlement. Mr. Cartwright continued in his itinerant labors for eight years in succession, and travelled and preached as much perhaps as any other man ever did in that time. He has been appointed to various offices and dignities of honor in the Methodist Church, the duties of which he has performed with credit to himself and advantage to the church. He has also represented the large and respectable county of Sangamon in the General Assembly for many sessions, one of which I acted with him in the Legislature, and I knew him to have been an efficient and excellent member. The Methodist Church in Illinois, and religion generally, are much indebted to the talents and energy of the Rev. Peter Cartwright for its success. He labored in the vineyard with such talents, activity, and perseverance, that success always crowned his efforts.

The Methodist societies in his itinerancy were just commenced, and were humble and weak, but the energy and powerful efforts of Mr. Cartwright gave them life and vigor; and at this day the Methodist societies, established greatly by his labors, are enjoying a prosperity not surpassed by any in the State. Mr. Cartwright was raised in moderate pecuniary circumstances, in a poor, backwoods' colony of Kentucky, and had not the benefits of a liberal education, but barely could read and write his native language when he was a young man. He possessed a sound, comprehensive mind, that guided him safely through all trials and troubles to an eminence and standing in society that few equal. Nature also bestowed on him an iron will and an energy that always sustained him. His sermons were solid and sound, forcing conviction on the judgment, and making as clear as noonday the distinction between virtue and vice, and the lines separating good from bad. He has been an exceedingly successful preacher, having converted legions of people from the ways of sin to truth. His person is somewhat similar to his mind — strong, hardy, and robust. He is yet, in his old age, blessed with vigor and energy, and is a living monument of a great and eminent patriarch of religion in the West.

In 1815, there were four Methodist circuits in Illinois — called Okau, Massac, Wabash, and Illinois. Illinois and Indiana, west of the meridian line at Madison, composed a "District," and the Rev. Jesse Walker acted in it as presiding elder. Many other eminent divines have labored also with great success in spreading the gospel in Illinois, until now the Methodist denomination


is the most numerous in the State. The Methodist organization is wise and efficient. Each neighborhood, no matter how remote and obscure it may be, has a circuit-rider among them suitable to their wants.

The census of 1850 reports 389 churches — accommodation for 176,474 persons in these churches; and the church property worth $327,290, belonging to the Methodist denomination in Illinois.

Chapter XXXIX.

The Early Baptist Denomination in Illinois. — Ministers of the Gospel in the Baptist Churches. — James Smith, John K. Simpson and Son, Josiah Dodge, James Lemen, Sr. and Sons, Joseph Chance and Son, John Clark, William Jones, Dr. John M. Peck, Deacon Smith, George Wolf. — Baptist Churches. — Baptist Statistics. — William Kinney. — Linley in Sangamon County.

IN the first settlement of Illinois, by the Americans as well as by the French, Christianity was planted almost co-equal with the colonies themselves. In the year 1787, the Rev. James Smith, of Lincoln County, Kentucky, visited Illinois, and preached to the inhabitants of the New Design, and many were converted by his efforts. The Rev. John K. Simpson was an eminent divine, and his son, the Rev. Gideon Simpson, is also a preacher and worthy member of society. In 1787, the Rev. Mr. Smith returned again, and many more were deeply affected by his sermons. He was taken prisoner by the Indians, but was rescued. Elder Smith returned to Illinois from Kentucky, the third time, and preached the gospel to the people with good effect.

In 1784, the Rev. Josiah Dodge, the uncle of Senator Dodge, of Wisconsin, came to Illinois, from his residence in Kentucky, and preached to the people. The Rev. James Lemen and others were baptized, and professed religion. In 1796, Rev. David Badgley visited the country from Hardy County, Virginia, and preached incessantly to the people for a short period. Fifteen were converted, and Elder Badgley, together with the Rev. Joseph Chance, organized the first Baptist Church in Illinois. Elder Badgley removed to the country, after visiting Virginia, and was a conspicuous light in the church. The layelder, Joseph Chance, arrived in the country in 1794, and remained in it during life, preaching the gospel until the year 1840, when he died.

"Father John Clark," as he was sometimes called, an eminent divine at that day, immigrated to Illinois in the year 1797, and was a conspicuous and efficient character in the pulpit and in the schools. He taught many of the rising generation of that day


the general principles of education, and also performed invaluable services in preaching the gospel in Illinois, as well as in Upper Louisiana. Dr. John M. Peck, of Illinois, has written an excellent biography of "Father Clark," which has added much to the reputation of the author as well as to advance the cause of religion. The Rev. James Lemen, Sr., immigrated from Western Virginia, and settled in Illinois in the year 1786, and after some short time became a preacher of the gospel, He was a distinguished and conspicuous character in Illinois, as a clergyman and a citizen, for a long series of years.

In 1805, the Rev. Messrs. Chance and Ratcliff made a stand for their meetings at my father's residence in Randolph County where I heard them preach on many occasions, but at that day and for many years thereafter, there was not an organized church in the county, except the Roman Catholic.

The Rev. Mr. Lindley, a Baptist preacher, took his stand, in early times, under the shade of the trees on Lick Creek, Sangamon County, and was preaching to a large congregation. In sight of his pulpit, he had constructed a wolf-pen, to capture the wolves, if any of those animals came within its toils. A wolf-pen is a cunning contrivance, made in early times, by which wolves were entrapped and caught. It must be recollected that wolves, at the first settlement of the country, were a great scourge on the stock of the farmers, and this was one mode to destroy them. A pen is a pit-hole dug in the ground, and a trap-door arranged over it, so that when a wolf stands on the door, his weight springs certain triggers, and the animal falls into the hole dug in the earth. When the wolf is in the pit, the trap or pen is down, and may be seen for some distance. Mr. Lindley called on his congregation, with that singular cant and kind of long-accented, drawling, sing-song voice, which many of the preachers assumed in pioneer-times, "to mind the text, brethren — the wolf-pen is down — I must kill the wolf — when I come back, put me on the text and I will preach out the sermon." At another meeting, it was said that a preacher shot a wolf from his pulpit.

The Rev. William Jones arrived in St. Clair County, Illinois, Wood River Settlement, in 1806, and preached the gospel for many years. He was a worthy and excellent man, and held many civil offices.

Several Baptist churches were organized in early times in Illinois. The most ancient was that of the New Design, and almost coeval with it, was one established in the American Bottom, west of Waterloo. About the same time in 1807, several Baptist churches were formed. One east of Silver Creek, not far above the mouth; one on the Quentine Creek; one on Wood River, in the present county of Madison; and one in the Badgley Settlement, a few miles north-east of Belleville.


All these churches were organized in St. Clair County, and flourished for many years.

It is a remarkable fact, that most of the large family of the celebrated pioneer and patriarch, the Rev. James Lemen, are members of the Baptist Church, and Joseph, James, Moses, Josiah and perhaps some more, are respectable preachers of the gospel. Also, David Robinson Chance, the son of the Rev. Joseph Chance, is a preacher of the gospel, and a worthy and excellent character.

Dr. John M. Peck, a descendant of the New-England Pilgrims, and a native of Connecticut, immigrated to the West in file year 1817, and has been, from that time to the present, a shining light in the Baptist Church, as well as a conspicuous and distinguished character in the literary community. Dr. peck located in St. Clair County in the year 1821, and has extended his clerical and literary labors, with great efficiency, all over the West from that time to the present. Nature bestowed on her favorite son, Dr. Peck, a strong and comprehensive mind, and great energy and perseverance. His mind possesses that strength, activity, and compass which enables him to triumph over almost every difficulty. His person is formed on the New-England model, large, athletic, and robust, made for utility as well as for a manly and majestic bearing. With these rare and distinguished traits of character, Dr. Peck was placed in a new State, where the character of the country was at the time forming itself for weal or woe, and had the opportunity, which he admirably improved, to do much good in the proper formation of the character of the people. As he progressed in his good offices, he labored assiduously in the temples of science and literature, until he is at this day one of the most-learned men in the State, and perhaps the first. With all these rare qualities combined in a single individual, he became an efficient and useful character in his sphere, and has exerted his utmost abilities to promote the best interest of the country. His sermons were always replete with sound, logical argument, irrefutable and powerful on his congregation. His exertions to prevent the introduction of slavery into the State in 1824, were efficient, and with others, successful.

The Sunday schools found, in the hands of Dr. Peck, their most efficient and powerful friend in Illinois. In the distribution of the bible, both in Missouri and Illinois, Dr. Peck has labored incessantly, and has performed valuable service in this department as well as in many others. Temperance has had, from his pen and discourse, an able and efficient advocate. And literature and science have been much advanced in Illinois by his talented and efficient labors. He established a seminary of learning at Rock Spring, St. Clair County, which shown out conspicuous and efficient for many years. At last it was


removed to Alton, and assumed the name of the Shurtliff College. As an author and literary man, Dr. Peck's character will be handed down to posterity with much fame and reputation. His writings, which are numerous, show great research, depth of judgment, and utility, and have done much good to the public. And to close this hasty sketch of the character of Dr. Peck , it may be said in truth, that he has as much, and perhaps more, than any other man in the State, made that lasting and solid impression of morality, religion, and order on the people of the State that Illinois so eminently enjoys at this day. He is now in health enjoying the fruit of a long and well-spent life, and is writing a large work, known as the "Moral Progress of the Valley of the Mississippi."

The Rev. William Kinney became a church-member, and preached for many years. He was a man of great mind and much energy, who figured in Illinois in various conspicuous and distinguished situations.

The Rev. Deacon Smith immigrated from Maine to Illinois in 1818, and settled in St. Clair County. He preached for many years.

In early times, a church was organized in Union County, composed mostly of Dunkards and Universalians, and at the head of which was a great and powerful natural man, the Rev. George Wolff. Mr. Wolff was gifted by nature with a strong mind, and although he had not received a liberal education in his youth, yet he became a wise and efficient clergyman in his maturer years. I have heard him preach, and his strong, common-sense sermons, founded on the Scriptures, sustaining his peculiar doctrine, were powerful, and seemed to me to be irrefutable. He is now an aged and living monument of worth, enjoying the prosperity of our common country, for which he labored much.

An association of the Baptist churches was formed in 1807, containing five churches. The New Design, Mississippi Bottom, Richland, Wood River, and Silver Creek. There were three ordained preachers and sixty-two members in these churches. In 1809, six preachers were ordained, and in all four hundred communicants in Missouri and Illinois. The Baptist churches grew in proportion to other religious congregations, and the population of the country, until at this, day they are established in almost every section of the country, and are the second religious denomination in the State. The census of 1850 states that the Baptist churches number 265 — accommodate 91,620 persons, and property they own is $204,095.


Chapter XL.

The Early Presbyterian Churches in Illinois. — The Rev. Samuel Wylie. — His Church Refused to Vote. — Presbyterian Church in Bond County. — One at Galena. — The Rev. Mr. Kent. — Cumberland Presbyterians in White County. — Presbyterian Statistics.

IN the summer of 1817, thirty-eight years ago, a delicate, slender lad, a descendant of the ancient Celtic race, just from the theological seminary, wended his way on horsback from Vincennes across the State of Illinois to St. Louis, and there remained a stranger in a strange land for sometime. This youth had been educated in Philadelphia, and had travelled to the West to propagate the gospel in a new country. After making inquiry, he found a few families in Randolph County, Illinois, whose religious persuasions were of the Presbyterian order, and accorded substantially with his own. Here in this neighborhood, on the eastside of the Kaskaskia River, he gathered together a flock, and preached to them. This small society had been settled in Illinois for twelve years or more, and had only two clergymen to visit them before the arrival of the young stranger. This energetic and fearless youth remained in the same settlement ever since, and has at this day, by his merit, acquired a distinguished character and reputation as a divine and scholar, and is known all over the State as the Reverend Samuel Wylie, of Randolph County. Mr. Wylie is the first Presbyterian clergyman who settled permanently in Illinois. This gentleman was at the head of a seminary of learning in Randolph County, as well as attending to his clerical duties, and has moved on with the country to character and respectability. In a few years after Mr. Wylie had planted his standard of religion in the new settlements of Randolph County, members of his church, known as "Covenanters," flocked to him from various parts of the Union, until he soon had a large congregation. The society has increased and prospered, until at this day they are quite numerous. At the formation of the State Constitution in 1818, they urged on the convention to recognize the holy scriptures in the constitution as "the word of God;" and because it was not affirmed, the members of the church declined to serve on a jury, or to vote, for many years — yet they would defend the country by bearing arms, paying taxes, and the like. Some years since, Mr. Wylie and a section of the society decided to vote and serve on the juries, which caused a schism in the church that continues to this day. This denomination is generally very decided against negro slavery, which frequently regulates their votes at the ballot-box.

The next Presbyterian Church established was in Greenville,


Bond County, in the year 1821, or thereabouts. This society has existed ever since, and is at this day a happy and prosperous community.

In 1829, the Rev. Mr. Kent established a small society of Presbyterians at Galena, Illinois, who also have prospered and done well.

In 1816, or thereabouts, in the county of White, was established a large congregation of Cumberland Presbyterians, which exists and flourishes there to this day.

As the country progressed, these religious societies also advanced, until at this time the Presbyterian denomination is numerous in many sections of this State, and can number, as reported by the census of 1850, 198 churches; accommodation in churches for 81,529 persons, and property worth $395,130.

At this day, in Illinois, almost all the religions of the earth exist, and are as liberal toward each other as is generally practised in any section of the Union. The census of 1850 report in all 1167 churches in the State, having an accommodation for 636,478 persons, and property valued at $1,476,385.

Chapter XLI.

Professional Men in Illinois Territory. — Lawyers and Physicians.

DURING the territorial government, many distinguished and intelligent professional characters settled in Illinois.

The Hon. John Rice Jones located in Kaskaskia as early as 1789, and remained in the West during his life. He was a distinguished lawyer and judge, and sustained his professional, official, and private character and standing, as a gentleman and scholar, during his long and eventful life in the Valley of the Mississippi.

Isaac Darneille, Esq., was the next lawyer; he located in Cahokia in the year 1796, and attended to land speculation and gallantry. He practised as much gallantry as law. He was also a man of excellent talents, but he made such leeway in the voyage of life that he run afoul of some of the precepts of the commandments.

James Haggin, Esq., settled in Kaskaskia about the year 1804, and resided in the vicinity. He returned to Kentucky and became a conspicuous judge in the State.

About this time; two very talented and efficient young lawyers, Nathaniel Pope and John Scott, although residing in Missouri, made their appearance generally in the courts of Illinois. These two young gentlemen were the choice fruits of nature, possessing great strength of intellect and much energy. They rose fast in the profession, and stood deservedly at the head of


the bar in their day in Missouri and Illinois. Mr. Pope was appointed a judge of the United States Court, and died a few years since, while the other, the Hon. John Scott, remains in the full enjoyment of his intellectual vigor and health to this day, and is one of the most ancient and respectable patriarchs of the law that lives at this time in either of the States of Missouri or Illinois.

About the same time, and some years after, Edward Hempstead, Rufus Easton, Robert Wash, and David Barton, Esquires, residents of St. Louis, Missouri, practised in the courts of Illinois.

In 1804, Benjamin H. Doyle and John Rector, Esquires, located in Kaskaskia, and practised law.

In 1808, William Mears, Esq., arrived in Cahokia, and practised the profession in Illinois during his life.

The Hon. Elias K. Kane commenced the practice of the law in Kaskaskia in the year 1814, and greatly distinguished himself as a lawyer and statesman. Not long after, the Hon. Daniel P. Cook also commenced the practice of law in Kaskaskia, and also became a distinguished and conspicuous character on the public stage. Charles Dunn, Esq., also became a distinguished character and judge in Wisconsin. Many eminent and talented lawyers, from St. Louis, practised in Illinois — Messrs. Thomas H. Benton, David and Joshua Barton, Mr. McGurk, Mr. Lucas, and others.

About this time, Hon. John McLean located in Shawneetown. This gentleman became a distinguished lawyer and statesman, and died while he was in the Senate of the United States.

James Hall and Henry Eddy commenced their professional career in Shawneetown. Both of these gentlemen soon became, by their talents and merit, distinguished and conspicuous characters. Mr. Eddy was the editor, also, of an excellent paper, while Mr. Hall was afterwards elected judge of the Circuit Court, and State treasurer. He turned his attention more to science and literature than to the law, and is at this time a prominent literary character of the city of Cincinnati. Also appeared as lawyers: A. P. Field, R. K. McLaughlin, P. H. Winchester, Thomas Reynolds, Thomas C. Browne, A. F. Hubbard, James W. Whitney, Charles S. Hempstead, Ralph P. Day, my humble self, and perhaps some others, were practising attorneys in the Territory of Illinois.

The Hon. John J. Crittenden was appointed attorney general of the territory, but did not remain long in the country.

It will be seen by a reference to the history of the members of the bar in territorial times, that many of the bar in after-life obtained high and respectable standing and characters as statesmen, judges, and civilians — in fact, I believe that the bar of Illinois, at that day, possessed more talented lawyers, to the


number, than ever practised in the courts of the State afterward.

Although the country in early times was much more sickly than at present, yet not so many physicians resided in the country as lawyers.

In 1797, when so many of the emigrants died at the New Design, an obscure doctor, Wallace, practised his profession.

In early times, a Dr. Lyle resided and practised in Cahokia.

Dr. George Fisher was the most eminent physician in the country in his early days. He settled in Kaskaskia in the year 1798, and possessed good talents. His practice was bold and fearless, and he succeeded well. The first medicine I ever took was from this physician, in the year 1801.

In East Tennessee, where we previously resided, we knew not much about either sickness or medicine. Dr. Fisher gave me a dose of tartar emetic for my father in 1800, and on my way home I thought the doctor had omitted to put the medicine in the paper, as I could not feel it. I opened the paper and saw a small amount of white powder in it. I thought that extremely small quantity could not answer the purpose, but I was soon convinced to the contrary on seeing my father so sick under its operation. At that day, it was the uniform and universal practice to give the patient of the bilious disease first a vomit of tartar emetic, next day, calomel and jallop, and the third day, the Peruvian bark. This course generally cured common cases of the bilious fever.

In 1803, Dr. Tuttle came to Kaskaskia, as surgeon with the troops; he was a good physician, and practised a long time in the country.

Dr. William L. Reynolds, from Kentucky, located in Kaskaskia in 1809, and became a conspicuous and eminent member of his profession. He was a man of a high order of talent, and was a well-educated and accomplished scholar. He was, in his day, the Hercules of his profession.

In 1802, Dr. Caldwell came to Illinois, and practised medicine for many years.

Dr. James Rose, from Kentucky, settled in Illinois in the year 1805, and remained in the country, a physician, during his life.

In 1816 and 1817, Doctors Todd and Bowers located in Edwardsville, and were, both of them, eminent and distinguished physicians. Dr. Todd possessed the advantages of a finished classic education, and had studied his profession in Philadelphia, with much honor and character to himself. These advantages, added to a strong mind, made him a distinguished and successful practitioner. He is yet alive in Springfield, enjoying a high standing in his profession, as well as a conspicuous character in society.


Dr. William G. Goforth located in Illinois in the year 1815, and practised his profession, during his lifetime, in the State. He was an exceedingly eccentric character, and at times intemperate — yet his practice was generally successful. He was bold and fearless in his practice.

Dr. Chips practised medicine in Pope County, in territorial times, and was a good physician.

Dr. Longworthy located at Alton in early times.

Dr. Tiffin located in Illinois in 1815, and attained a very conspicuous position. He always enjoyed a remarkably large practice, and was an excellent physician.

The ministers of the gospel have been mentioned in another part of this work.

Chapter XLII.

The Domestic Relations of the Author.

DURING all my previous life until within a short time before I married, I had not the least intention of that state of existence, and I expressed myself often to my friends to the same effect — but on the subject of matrimony, a passion influences the parties which generally succeeds. By mere accident I became acquainted with a widow lady, a French Creole, a native of Cahokia, and from sincere affection on both sides, we married in the spring of 1817. Pure feelings of attachment, without any dross of wealth or "worldly gear," with either party, caused us to unite, and under these circumstances we lived together happy and contented. My wife had been from her infancy raised, and continued to be, a strict Roman Catholic, and we were married by a priest of a that denomination. I consider all the various religious denominations substantially the same in principle, and almost the same in practice — so that my wife exercised her religion just as she did before the marriage. I sustained the church expense as if we had both been members of it.

We resided many years in a French community, and spoke that language in our domestic intercourse for sixteen or eighteen years. I became so much accustomed to the French language, around the fireside, that I preferred it to the English. That language is better adapted to family colloquial interchange of ideas and feelings than the English, but the latter is stronger rougher, and better suited to rough business subjects than the other.

In the fall of 1834, my wife died, in Belleville, which was the severest shock I ever experienced. No tongue or pen can portray the grief of a husband losing the partner of his heart — no one can "feel another's woe." I thought I never would surmount it, but nature has ordered TIME to soothe the wound


and heal it over. If it were not for this friend, mankind would be always miserable. We had no offspring.

It is said that "marriages are made in Heaven;" but I think it is an earthly transaction, yet an important one. If persons make too much calculation in matrimony, like buying a farm and have no love or affection in it, such marriages generally turn out bad. On the other hand, if they are blind love-matches "runaway matches," without any foresight, they are not apt to produce happiness. Ardent love and affection, together with judgment and prudence, should be mixed in the transaction, to secure a lasting and happy union.

Chapter XLIII.

Slavery Existed in Illinois before 1787. — The Ordinance of that year Prevented it. — Indentured Servants. — The State Constitution Prohibits Slavery in the State.

IT is well known that the first introduction of slavery into Illinois was by Philip Francis Renault, in the year 1720. On his passage from Europe to America he procured from San Domingo five hundred slaves to work the mines in Illinois, and these negroes are the ancestors of the French slaves in this State. The descendants of those slaves, who reside in Illinois, are now free, and are located mostly in and around Prairie du Rocher, in Randolph County.

When Virginia conquered the country, and the same was annexed to that State, the right of property to their slaves was guaranteed to the inhabitants, as well as their other property.

In the act of cession of the country from Virginia to the General Government, the right of property, slaves among the rest, was secured to the inhabitants of Illinois.

The act of Congress known as the "Ordinance," which was passed in the year 1787, and by which the North-Western Territory was organized as a government, prohibited, positively, the introduction of slavery into the Territory, and Illinois, at that time, formed a part of the Territory.

This Ordinance was construed to operate prospectively, and not to operate on the French slaves in the Territory at the time.

This act of Congress was the great sheet-anchor that secured the States of Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois from slavery. I never had any doubt but slavery would now exist in Illinois if it had not been prevented by this famous Ordinance.

Soon after the organization of the Indiana Territory, of which Illinois formed a part, laws were enacted by the Territorial legislature permitting slaves to be introduced as "Indentured Servants;" and under this law many were admitted into the Territory.


The owner might go with his slaves before the clerk of the court of common pleas, and make an agreement with his negroes to serve the master a certain number of years, and then become free. The children were to serve their masters — the males until they were thirty-five years old, and the females to thirty-two years. This agreement was to be done within thirty days after the slave entered the Territory, and if the slaves would not consent to the agreement, they might be removed out of the Territory within sixty days. This agreement was made a record binding on the parties.

Although this proceeding was intended by the legislature to introduce a species of slavery, yet I knew many slaves and their families who were manumitted by the operation, and are now free. This act of the legislature operated as a kind of gradual emancipation of slavery in the Territory.

Both constitutions of the State expressely prohibited the introduction of slavery, the first had no intention to manumit the French slaves, but the supreme court of the State, in 1845, decided that slavery, French or any other, could not exist in the State. This decision liberated all the French slaves in the country.

Public opinion, being strong in this State against slavery, reached the bench, as well as it does every other department of the government, and what was right twenty years before was wrong in 1845, in relation to slavery.

In 1810, one hundred and sixty-eight slaves are said to have been in the Territory. In 1820, they increased to nine hundred and seventeen; and in 1830, they decreased to seven hundred and forty-six.

Chapter XLIV.

Organization of the State Government in 1818, and Election of the Officers.

THE act of Congress authorizing the formation of a State government in the Territory of Illinois required forty thousand inhabitants to reside in the Territory before a constitution could be established, but the census returned a few more.

The members of the convention were elected in the summer of 1818, and the same year, the convention met at Kaskaskia. No question was agitated in the election of the members, except slavery, in some sections of the Territory.

At that day, and before, in the Territory there existed not the slightest spark of party politics as to measures. The parties of Federal and Republican, as they had and did exist in the Union to some extent, did not at this day, nor before, appear in Illinois among the people. All were Republicans, sustaining the republican administration of the General Government and the war.

Nevertheless, two parties did exist at the time, and before, in the Territory, and were founded on the qualifications of men for office, and on the "ins and outs" of power and place. As many bitter feelings and rancorous personal contests were indulged in under these parties, as were ever after, when parties were organized on Whig and Democratic principles.

Messrs. Edwards, Pope, Cook, Gen. White, Judge Brown, and others, formed one party, and Messrs. Bond, Thomas, Michael Jones, Kane, McLean, and others, were leaders of the other party. A great portion of the country, more or less, was divided between these two parties, and no other existed among the people. I was not attached at the time to either party and did not pretend to aid or assist either as a party.

At these times, I had not the most distant idea of office, and I sincerely detested party-jugglery. I did not attend at all the convention at Kaskaskia, and had no "itching palm" for office.

Judge Thomas and Governor Edwards were both looking out for the Senate of the United States, and were opposed to each other.

Governor Edwards had the aged and sedate leaders of the people friendly to him, but Judge Thomas had the young, ardent, and energetic men, supporting him, who were mixing every day with the people. Judge Thomas succeeded. I discovered that a union of energetic young men can beat the old party-leaders. I acted in the election for mere amusement, and did not know or care, whether I had popularity or not, except on this particular occasion I invoked it. Judge Thomas was also elected president of the convention. This body was composed of members of good sense and becoming qualifications. Elias K. Kane, Esq., was a member, and was an accomplished scholar and eminent lawyer — he also possessed good talents and was the leader in the convention.

The first constitution was a wise and excellent compact of government, with one or two exceptions. The judges of the supreme court were formed into a council of revision, which was found, on experience, to be unwise, and the qualification of electors was defective.

The constitution was signed and established on the 26th of August, 1818, and an election for members of the General Assembly was ordered to take place on the third Thursday, and the two succeeding days, of September, 1818.

The members were elected — forty-two in all — fourteen senators and twenty-eight representatives, who assembled at Kaskaskia on the first Monday of October, in the same year. Shadrach Bond was elected governor, and Pierre Menard, lieutenant-governor, at the same time. Both these officers possessed


sound judgment and excellent characters. They performed the duties of their offices, respectively, to the satisfaction of the people.

At the first session of the General Assembly, Ninian Edwards and Jesse B. Thomas were elected United States senators. John McLean had been elected representative to Congress at the previous election in August.

The constitution established the judiciary of the State, and had created a supreme court and circuit courts, to be composed of the same judges, four in number. This organization was to continue until the next legislature that would sit after the year 1824.

The justices of the supreme court of the State were elected by the General Assembly; and Joseph Philips was elected a chief-justice, and Thomas C. Browne, William P. Foster, and myself, as associate-justices.

At the time of the session of the first legislature I resided in Cahokia, and had not the least intention to visit the seat of Government at all. I cared very little who was elected to any office — one thing was certain, I courted nothing myself. My friends urged me to visit, with them, the General Assembly in session at Kaskaskia, and I did so. When we reached the legislature, there was great excitement and turmoil in relation to the election of officers by the General Assembly. I had not been in Kaskaskia only a few days when it was urged on me to know if I would accept of a judgeship, if I was elected. This broke in on me like a clap of thunder. I was in truth persuaded to become a candidate for the office. I had a great many personal friends both in and out of the legislature who urged me much to consent to offer. The material for the bench was not as good as it might be. Human nature is easier persuaded to mount upward than to remain on the common level. I was elected a justice of the supreme court, which entirely changed my life, as will be seen hereafter.

All the officers were elected, and the Legislature adjourned to meet on the proclamation of the Governor, when the State was admitted into the Union. Thus was the State government of Illinois established, and launched into existence, in the hands of common-sense men, and sound and honest patriots.


Chapter XLV.

The First Session of the General Assembly Revised the Statute Laws, and Adapted them to the State Government. — The Canal. — Organization of the Judicial Circuits.

THE State of Illinois was admitted into the Union in December, 1818, and the Governor convened the General Assembly at Kaskaskia soon thereafter.

Being not many speech-makers in the legislature, and being a small body, much business was done during this first session. The whole statutory code of laws was revised, reenacted, and printed in a volume. The members worked day and night, and procured the assistance of able and learned men to aid them in remodeling the old statutes. Mr. Kane, who had been appointed Secretary of State, was present, and rendered valuable services on this important subject. The judges of the supreme court by the constitution were required to attend the sessions of the legislature, being, in fact, a component part of that body, were also present, and assisted all in their power in this work.

I had an intimate acquaintance with the statute laws, and found them scattered through many years, and in many detached and separate books, so that it was with much difficulty and research that any one knew what were the laws in force; they were also often contradictory and conflicting. I had become friendly and intimate with the members of the General Assembly, and urged on them the propriety and necessity of a revision of all the statutes of the Territory, and to repeal all laws not found in the revised code. Many good men considered the revision too great a task, during the session of the legislature — but labor then, to me, was the best amusement. The General Assembly agreed to it, and accomplished the work with honor and credit to themselves, and benefit and advantage to the public.

Governor Bond drew the attention of the legislature to the subject of the canal connecting the waters of the Illinois River with the lakes, and I drafted a bill providing for an examination of the country over which the canal was to be constructed, and to report to the next General Assembly.

I had not the least knowledge of the rocks in the route, as I had heard the French boatmen often say that they had frequently crossed over the route in their boats in high water. Under this view, I supposed a canal would not cost much. But the legislature considered that the country was too new, in 1819, and the expense would be too great — they accordingly did not pass the bill, but they considered, as every intelligent man


has since, that this canal is one of the greatest improvements in the United States.

The legislature, organized the judiciary of the State, and placed the judges on the circuit.

The counties of Clark, Jefferson, Wayne, and Alexander were created this session, and added to the respective judicial circuits.

I presided in the counties of St. Clair, Madison, Washington, Monroe, and Bond — being one more than my number. Judge Philips in the counties of Randolph, Jackson, Union, and Alexander. Judge Brown in the counties of Gallatin, Pope, Johnson, Jefferson, and Franklin. Judge Foster in White, Edwards, Crawford, Clark, and Wayne. The last-named gentleman resigned before he held court, and William Wilson was appointed to fill the vacancy.

About the last act the legislature passed at Kaskaskia, in 1819, was the law removing the seat of government to Vandalia. Congress had granted to the State four sections of land for the seat of government, and on part is located Vandalia, the present county seat of Fayette County. The seat of government remained here until it was removed to Springfield, in 1840.

By this organization, under the new constitution, the State of Illinois commenced that extraordinary career of prosperity that has marked her course ever since.

Chapter XLVI.

The Judiciary of the State. — Opening Court. — Members of the Bar.

AN enlightened and able judiciary is an important department of the government. Much of the happiness, peace, and quiet of the people depends on the proper administration of the laws. The speedy, efficient, and certain punishment of crime is an essential in a government to preserve the peace and happiness of the people.

It is the great element, the prompt and able administration of the law in Great Britain, that has sustained that kingdom for so many ages in her proud judicial character. I believe there is no government on the globe where the laws are better executed than in Great Britain.

A judge should be aged, learned, experienced in the science of the law. He should also have a high standing and character, in order that his decisions may be respected. Judge Blackstone says the truth — that the decision of a judge should be popular, next after doing justice.

The judges of the supreme court of Illinois, in 1818, were all young men, and had not that long practise at the bar that was necessary to give standing and character to their decisions; but


the law was administered at that day with less form and ceremony, yet with as much equity and justice as at the present time.

The judges had laborious duties to perform to hold both the circuit and the supreme courts througout the whole State.

The first court I held was in the spring of 1819, in Covington Washington County, and it was to me a strange and novel business. I commenced my official duties among my old comrades with whom I had been raised — ranged in the war with them, and lived with them in great intimacy and equality, so that it was difficult in my situation, to assume a different relationship than I had previously occupied with them. And moreover, I utterly detested a kind of mock dignity, that sometimes is asumed. Both the sheriff and clerk of the court of Washington County were rangers in the same company with myself, and it seemed we were still in the United States service, ranging on equal terms in pursuit of the Indians. And it appears that the sheriff, Bowling Green, entertained the same opinion; as he opened the court in a very familiar manner. When he was sitting astride on a bench in the court-house, and proclaimed without rising, that "the court is now opened, John is on the bench." This my familiar name in the war.

Not long after, in Union County, the deputy-sheriff opened the court, (myself presiding,) by saying: Oh, yes! three times, and then in a solemn manner proclaimed: "the Honorable Judge is now opened. He mistook the judge for the court. This mistake created much merriment, when the occasion should have been serious. I knew that a solemn, serious dignity and decorum were necessary and proper in the proceedings of courts, but in my case, and the officers generally, it was almost impossible to assume that character.

When the State Government was organized, a great many members of the bar immigrated to Illinois, who possessed great and distinguished talents, and many of whom, in after-life, stood not only at the head of the profession, but many also became conspicuous and celebrated public characters.

Chapter XLVII.

Trials of Murder in the Courts wherein I Presided. — Short and Fike. — William Bennett. — Eliphalet Green. — An Indian in Pike County. — Bottsford at Vandalia.

IN the Spring of 1819, a trial for murder was brought up in the St. Clair Circuit Court, and the parties were acquitted. This homicide arose out of a sham duel fought between William Bennett and Alonzo C. Stuart. The parties indicted for murder in


this case, were Jacob Short and Nathan Fike. They had been the seconds in this pretended duel, and although the people condemned the transaction, yet the verdict of acquittal of murder was generally approved. This trial produced great excitement in the county, and was conducted by able and influential counsel. Daniel P. Cook, Esq., was the prosecuting attorney, and Col. Thomas H. Benton defended. At the same court, the sheriff proceeded to the jail to bring into court William Bennett, one of the duelists, for trial, but he broke jail and escaped. He remained out of the State for some time, but in 1821, was arrested and brought to trial in Belleville, at a special term of the Circuit Court.

In February, 1819, many citizens of St. Clair County assembled in the town of Belleville, and enjoyed a wild drunken frolic. It was proposed to have a sham duel between Alonzo C. Stuart and William Bennett. It was given out to all except Bennett that the duel was not real, only a sham, to have sport out of Bennett. Nathan Fike and Jacob Short were the seconds, and the duel was fought with rifles on the lot now owned by Jacob Leifert, situated north of Main street, in Belleville. It was understood that the guns should be charged with powder alone, but Bennett's rifle had a ball in it, and he shot Stuart in the breast, which caused his death immediately. The parties were posted forty yards apart, and Stuart did not fire his gun at all. It was proved that Bennett secretly put a ball in his gun. He was taken in Missouri by finesse, that was not approved of, brought to Belleville, tried, condemned, and executed. Mr. Stuart was a worthy citizen, and his unfortunate death was much regretted.

Another case of murder occurred in Madison County in 1823, that was also exceedingly unpleasant for me to preside as Judge on the trial. Eliphalet Green had a quarrel with a man near the residence of Able Moore, on Wood River, Madison County, and shot his antagonist. Green fled to the American Bottom, reflected and returned. His conscience waged a terrible war in his breast. He sat on a log, then kneeled by it and prayed devoutly. He returned deliberately back to the settlement and gave himself up to William Ogle. He slept all night alone in the house of Ogle, without any confinement. Next day, he and Ogle went to Edwardsville, the county seat, and Green surrendered himself to the law, and was confined in jail.

In the progress of my official duties I was compelled to pronounce sentence of death on these two unfortunate men. That was, to me, the most painful duty I ever performed. I am opposed to capital punishment, in any case, when the convicts can be kept in solitary confinement without pardoning their lives, but as the law was in 1821, when William Bennett was executed in Belleville, and Eliphalet Green in Edwardsville, soon


afterward, there was no alternative but to execute the law as it existed. Although the law requires it, the verdict of the jury, after an impartial trial, authorizes it, and the prevention of crime imperiously demands it; yet it was extremely painful and awful to me to be the instrument in the hands of the law to pronounce sentence of death on my fellow-man, extinguishing him forever as a being from the face of the earth, and depriving him of life, which I think belongs to God and not to man.

In the case of Green, light, silly stories are told, sometimes in malice, but more frequently in friendship and merriment, of my want of sympathy, gravity, and solemnity in pronouncing the sentence of death on this unfortunate man, which are entirely untrue. Sometimes these silly fabrications are in violation of truth, recorded in history, when the author knew they were only amusing jokes, and not intended as the sober truths of history.

I may not have acted in that frigid, unfeeling, and mechanical manner that would please heartless and superficial men who generally write and detail these teapot slanders, but no human being, of my humble capacity, could have acted with more painful feelings and sympathy than I did on this occasion. A cold formal address might have been prepared and written according to the rules of art, made for the bystanders in court, having in it not a spark of human feeling, which might have pleased these fault-finders better than one emanating purely from the heart. Many critics, some authors, and fault-finders, whose scholastic achievements are generally whipped into them at school, without a spark of "nature's fire" to illuminate their dreary tracks through life, look back at everything ancient in Illinois with ill-nature and contempt. These critics would find fault, I suppose, with the impolite and uncourtly manner of the unfortunate men when they are writhing on the gallows in the agonies of death, that they did not die according to the forms in the books. I considered them both guilty, and the judgment of the court was so understood that they were both executed.

Many individuals, who were acquainted with the transaction, seem to have doubts that the gun of Stuart was also charged with a ball. Some are disposed to believe that the parties, both Bennett and Stuart, had by some means their guns loaded with powder and ball to do execution on one another, or on both. Mr. Park, one of the company, fired off the gun in the air, which Mr. Stuart had, so that the ball in it would not be discovered.

This unfortunate affair, wherein a worthy and respectable citizen was murdered, took place in the limits of the present city of Belleville, which was considered the result of a wild, drunken frolic, and it never did assume the character of a regular and honorable duel. It had, in my opinion, no agency in putting down the barbarous and anti-christian practice of dueling in this State, but it was the enlightened and Christian tone of public opinion


that always banished this blood-thirsty practice of dueling from our borders.

This improved and healthy action of public opinion, and the heavy penalties prescribed by the new constitution of the State will, I hope, secure the people forever against this murderous practice. This carousal, which was so much regretted and condemned by the public, was founded entirely on the immoderate use of spirits, and stands out a beacon-light to caution the unsuspecting against intemperance.

Green embraced religion and was baptized by Dr. Peck. He made a long confession and died happy, before spectators to the number of two thousand or more. Dr. Peck remained on the platform with him just previous to his execution, and requested him to clasp his hands before him so long as consciousness remained with him. He did so, and his hands were clasped about forty-five seconds, and then they separated by death. How awful and solemn death is in any shape or form! The body of Green was taken out of the grave by Dr. Phillio, of Lebanon, St. Clair County, but the officers and citizens of Edwardsville rescued it. The body was afterward buried in the garden of Hail Mason, in Edwardsville, where it remains to this day.

A case of homicide was brought before the court held by me in Pike County, in 1824, for an Indian killing a Frenchman. A poor Indian lived with a Frenchman near the mouth of the Illinois River, and they were both out hunting deer with torch-light. They were in canoes in the Illinois River, where the deer resorted to eat the moss in the river. The Indian seeing the torch-light of the Frenchman, mistaking it for the glare of the deer's eyes in the night, and without intending to shoot his friend, killed the Frenchman, his comrade. The whole French colony knew the facts and acquitted the Indian, but the Americans disliked the Indians. They took the Indian into custody and had him indicted. The attorney-general, Samuel D. Lockwood, prosecuted him and Daniel P. Cook defended him. It took several days to try the Indian, and the jury could not agree for a long time, many of them being for finding a verdict for murder, but at last they would not acquit him, and brought into court a verdict for manslaughter. I never witnessed so much prejudice as existed there against the Indians. This unfortunate Indian considered himself dead, and appeared so on the trial. I knew he was not guilty at all, and put the punishment nominal, a few hours in confinement, and twenty-five cents fine. I was fearful the populace would commit a riot on the unfortunate Indian. As soon as he was liberated he marched up the steep bluff without a track near the place where the court was held, and that was the last I saw of him. If the crowd had been permitted, the Indian would have been sacrificed to the demon of prejudice.


Another case, that of Mr. Bottsford, was tried before me in 1824 or 1825, for the killing of Mr. Kelly. This case occurred in Vandalia, and it was tried there. Sidney Breese, Esq., was the prosecuting attorney and Edward Bates, Esq., of St. Louis Missouri, defended Bottsford. The trial produced much excitement, and the gentlemen at the bar, both prosecuting and defending, acquitted themselves with much credit for the distinguished and extraordinary display of talents brought to bear in the case. These two gentlemen in after-life held, and do at this day hold, very conspicuous and elevated positions in society. Bottsford was acquitted, but the case seemed to be not entirely clear of guilt.

Chapter XLVIII.

Early Banks of Illinois. — Dearth of Money. — Relief. — A State Bank. — Stay-laws. — Loan to Wind up the State Bank.

THERE is no political maxim truer than that banks in the hands of companies to issue paper as a currency at their pleasure is a great injury to a people. The legal currency of the Union is silver and gold, and was so made by Providence and the constitution of the United States. It is certain, by experience, that whenever paper issues can be made at the pleasure of an irresponsible company, the currency is liable to be inflated or depressed to suit the advantages of those interested, without regard to the public welfare. Banks may facilitate commerce, but taking the whole community together, they always have done, and always will do more injury than benefit to the people. A bank was chartered by the first General Assembly in 1819, but it never went into existence. The country was flooded with bank paper all over the Union after the close of the war, but worthless paper of the Western States went down, and left the country almost without any currency towards the years 1819, 1820, and 1821. The pressure reached Illinois in its aggravated forms, and property was down to nothing. Cows and calves sold for four or five dollars, and wheat at thirty-five and forty cents per bushel; corn was, in many places, down to ten cents. The people, and the members of the General Assembly who were elected in 1820, were enthusiastic for some relief, but what kind of amelioration of "hard times" was not considered or known.

The people had contracted large debts when the money was plenty, and now, when it was so scarce, it was almost impossible to pay these demands. These considerations urged the people and the General Assembly to seek some relief from this impending evil.

In the early part of the winter of 1821, the legislature conceived the idea of creating a State Bank, formed wholly for the


time present, ON THE CREDIT OF THE STATE. This bank was to have a capital of a half a million of dollars, and to issue in the beginning only three hundred thousand dollars. The State by its directors, was to manage the mother bank and the branches, and the whole to remain under the control of the General Assembly. Money was to be loaned to no individual on personal security in sums above one hundred dollars, and to be secured in real estate at two-thirds the value. The notes were to draw an interest of six per cent. per annum, and the bank to exist for ten years.

The worst feature yet to be told, was that if a creditor did not take this paper for his debt at par the debt could be replevied for three years. The paper was made receivable for all taxes, State debts, and many others, which the State had the power to control. As it has already been stated, the council of revision had to pass on all bills and approve or reject them. The bill was presented to the council, and three of the five members vetoed it, and returned it to the House of Representatives with their objections. Governor Bond, Judge Philips, and myself, disapproved of the measure, and Judge Wilson and Brown consented to it. The General Assembly became excited and passed the law by a constitutional majority, over the objections of the council. This charter became the law of the land, and the bank went into operation. The veto-message of the council raised the objections to both its constitutional errors and its policy. The paper of this bank was floating through the atmosphere of Illinois for ten years, as a poisoning and pestilential vapor that withered and blighted the country for that length of time. The paper never was at par and sunk, at times, down to twenty-five cents per dollar.

At almost every session of the General Assembly, during the existence of the bank, either the bank or the bank debtors prayed relief, which was a prolific source of legislation.

The members of the legislature paid themselves, at times, nine dollars per day, and the other officers of the State were also paid in proportion to the depreciation of the paper.

The "stay-laws" and "stop-laws," as they were called, operated a great injury to the people, not only for the non-payment of all debts, but they encouraged a kind of disregard for honesty and morality, which in all communities is essential to preserve. I always opposed all laws that interposed any impediment between debtor and creditor. This is a relation — debtor and creditor — existing between free men, made by themselves, that the laws should hold sacred and inviolable. The law in all well-regulated communities should extend its efficient arm to the collection of debts. I am opposed to imprisonment for debt, but it is dishonest legislation to permit one individual to retain the substance of another by law.


The old State Bank lingered out its miserable existence, never observing its promises, or meeting the expectations of its friends and was wound up in 1831. I had been an observer of its incapacity for the ten years of its existence, and had suffered by its muddy water so much, that I was determined to do all in my power to wind it up and rid the country of its pollutions. In my first message to the General Assembly, dated December 3d 1820, I presented the subject as follows:

"The subject of the State Bank, as connected with our revenue, will, necessarily, occupy much of your time. The true policy, in my opinion, is to close the business of the bank as soon as a proper regard to the interests of the State will permit. This, too, ought to be done with as little oppression to the bank debtors as possible.

"Within a short time all the paper of the bank will become payable. And although the bank policy has been most ruinous to the State and many of its citizens, and only benefited a few speculators, yet the State is in honor and duty bound for its payment at the appointed time. The credit and character of the State are involved in the prompt payment of this claim; and I do most sincerely recommend you to sustain that character, which no doubt you will take pleasure in doing, by providing adequate means. The warrants of the State ought not to be allowed to fall below par"

In pursuance of the above recommendation a law was passed, and a loan of one hundred thousand dollars was made to enable the State to meet the claims against the State Bank. The loan was effected and the bank wound up. A good currency was introduced and much benefit by the operation, yet in many sections of the State the loan was unpopular, and it was said the State was sold to Wiggins who made the loan to the State. Many of my friends were prostrated a while for doing their duty in this case, but at last the measure became popular.

Chapter XLIX.

The Public Debt to the General Government for the Lands Purchased — Relief. — Large Debt. — Land System changed. — Credit for Public Land abolished. — Col. Johnson, of Kentucky, first to give Relief. His Character. — General Relief granted, and the relation of Debtor and Creditor destroyed.

PECUNIARY embarrassments set in so strong in the West that purchasers of the public lands at two dollars per acre, and three-fourths due the Government, were unable to pay the balance of the purchase money, and all the lands were liable to be forfeited to the United States. This was the most serious grievance of


all the disasters the people of the new States yet suffered. Their plantations and improvements were liable to be swept from under them, but the Congress of the United States came to the rescue. Col. Richard M. Johnson, in the Senate of the United States, was the first who proposed relief to the purchasers of the public lands.

Col. Johnson, of Kentucky, was a great and patriotic statesman ever willing and ever ready to relieve the distresses of his fellow-men. He possessed a sound and solid judgment, and a mind of common practical sense, with very little brilliancy or imagination. His integrity throughout a long and eventful life was always above suspicion. He made speeches in Congress to convince the judgments of his audience, and never attempted eloquence or the flourishes of rhetoric. His report against the stoppage of the Sunday mails is a distinguished and enlightened public document. This report alone would give any person fame and celebrity, but his distinguished character, as a public man, did not stand alone on this report. He voted for the war of 1812, with Great Britain, while he was a member of the House of Representatives, and when the session adjourned he volunteered and commanded, as Colonel, a regiment of mounted men who invaded Canada. At the head of his regiment he charged at the battle of the Thames, on the Indians, who were numerous, furious, and fanatical, under the command of the celebrated warrior Tecumseh. He fought with Tecumseh, and his warriors, one of the most sanguinary battles ever fought with the aborigines. In this battle Tecumseh was killed, some say by the hand of Johnson, and he himself (Johnson) was wounded and cut almost to pieces in this terrible conflict. He was carried off by the celebrated William T. Barry, and others, on a blanket, while the blood was streaming in torrents from his wounds which were, at the time, considered mortal. It was a long time before he recovered his health, and, in fact, he never was restored to his previous personal vigor. His wounds, at last, hurried him to the grave. Thus fell "the poor man's friend, the kindest and the best."

The two great leading traits of Johnson's character were benevolence and patriotism. These were the dominant passions that governed him, more or less, in all his actions. I was intimate with him in Congress, which enables me to speak so positively in relation to this great and good man. On his recommendation, a wise and judicious act of Congress was passed in 1820, which authorized the purchasers of public, lands, to select what they wished to retain and relinquish the balance to the Government The amount of money paid was applied at one dollar and twenty-five cents per acre on the lands retained, and the Government received the lands back which were unpaid for. This law put the Government and the people on equal and friendly terms.


Another excellent feature in this law was, that it changed the credit system to prompt payment, and reduced the price from two dollars per acre to one dollar and twenty-five cents. At this time the public debt, owing to the United States, was about twenty-three millions of dollars, which could not be paid at that time. This act of Congress healed up all hard feelings and troubles between the people and the Government, and what is still better, it destroyed the relation of debtor and creditor which ought not to exist with the Government.

The funds the people paid into the land-offices were disbursed by the Government around the seaboards. If the West was not blest with the most productive soil, the country would have been ruined by its policy. In return for this treatment, the first settlers laid violent hands on " Congress timber," which indemnified them to some extent.

Chapter L.

Slavery Agitation in Illinois. — Election of Hon. D. P. Cook to Congress.

THE Missouri question, so called at that day, 1823, more of a political character than the public lands, agitated little Illinois to the very centre. The State had then not many more than fifty thousand inhabitants, but the subject of slavery was discussed in the court-yards, sometimes in the pulpits, and at all gatherings of the people, as well as in the presses, and on the stump, throughout the State. In the elections of this year, this question was the prominent element. At that day, there was no question of Democracy or Whiggery. John McLean, the member then in Congress, voted on the Missouri side of the question, which beat him at the election. Daniel P. Cook took the other side, and was elected.

The discussion of this subject was bitter and acrimonious. This subject has always engendered bitter feelings among the people, and has a tendency to array one section of the Union against the other. The people in Illinois, in 1820, were ready almost to commit violence on one another, and in fact the whole Union was so agitated that, like an earthquake, no one knew when it would subside, and all friends of the integrity of the Union were alarmed and shuddered at the fearful consequences of the agitation, and the sectional feelings produced on the occasion. The public agitation of the subject of slavery, and particularly in the halls of Congress, should be avoided as much as possible.


Chapter LI.

Artificial Mounds in Illinois, and all over the West. — Big Mound in the American Bottom, and Others. — The Grand Tower. — Marrais d'Ogee.

THE number of mounds in the West, and the millions of people inhabiting the Valley of the Mississippi, in some remote periods, is truly astonishing. These mounds were made by hand, and show an almost incalculable number of inhabitants in the country when they were made.

Brackenbridge says — the number of villages of these forgotten people must have been five thousand, and the chief city existed not far from the mouth of the Missouri. It is unsettled if these Tumuli were constructed for places of worship, fortifications, or burial purposes, or for all of these objects.

I have never read any reasonable account of the time, or by whom, or for what purpose, there mounds were made. It is stated, that in the West alone, there are several thousand of them. They vary from ten feet high to the Mammoth Mound in the American Bottom, six miles east of St. Louis, which measures almost two hundred feet high, and is eight hundred yards in circumference.

One writer states that the large fortification at Marietta, Ohio, was made by the Romans when they had Western Europe under their dominion. This is random shooting, in my opinion.

On the Ohio River, twelve miles below Wheeling, are many mounds, one of which is very large.

A town is laid out here, where the Atlantic and Ohio Railroad strikes the river, and is called the "Mound City," for the many mounds on its site. The large mound here, is ninety feet high and fifty-six rods in circumference.

It is stated that the Great Mound near Washington, in the State of Mississippi, is one hundred and forty-six feet high and fifty-six rods in circumference.

At Circleville, Ohio, are extraordinary works of the ancients; some of which are military, and show much advancement in the art of fortification. One fort is exactly square, and the other circular. The square fortress is forty-five rods on each side, and the circular is three hundred rods around it. These forts were walled with earth, and one of them had a ditch around it.

At Paint Creek, Ohio, are also stupendous ancient fortifications. The land enclosed is six hundred and twenty rods in circumference, and embraces one hundred and twenty-six acres of land; within this fortification are seventeen mounds, and three hundred and twelve feet of the fort are encompased by a wall twelve feet high, and a ditch twenty feet deep.


In Tennessee, and almost all the Western States, many of these mounds and fortifications have been discovered — but in the region around the Big Mound, above stated, are an immense number, perhaps more than in any other section of the West.

I have often been on the Big, or Monk Mound, as it was once called, and discovered a kind of bench, or second story, to it. Mr. Hill, the proprietor of the mound, after the monks left it sunk a well on the side of the mound, and found the layers of earth composing the mound, and vegetable matter. In one section of the mound a great number of human bones were discovered; but the general supposition is that this mound was the residence of the great monarch of the country; other speculations make it a place of retreat for the inhabitants in times of the inundations of the Mississippi Bottom.

A few miles east of Lebanon, in St. Clair County, is an interesting mound. This is erected on the high land, and is elevated from fifty to eighty feet above the surface. Although I have often examined it, I could never discover for what use it was intended.

Near Caledonia, on the Ohio River, in Pulaski County, I have examined an ancient fortress. It is situated on a slope to the Ohio River and contains several acres within its walls. Gateways were open, one to the river, and the other back from the Ohio. I think this fortress had no ditch around it.

Some distance from the Great Mound, in the American Bottom, were three, and may be more, watch-towers, or mounds of earth, erected on the highest ground in the vicinity. One of these mounds is built on the high, rocky bluff, five miles from Cahokia, in Monroe County. The French call it "Pain de Sucre" — Sugar Loaf. Another is on the high bluff, in Madison County, three or four miles north-east of the Great Mound, and the third is also on the bluff above St. Charles, in Missouri. It is the general opinion that these elevations were watch-towers, and on them at night beacon-lights were raised at the approach of danger.

In Madison County, there is a smaller mound, near the one above mentioned, and which induced the French to call them "Les Mammalles" — the teats.

On the site of St. Louis, so many mounds existed that the city has acquired the cognomen of "The Mound City."

Above this city, and in almost every direction west of the river, as well as east, these mounds are discovered in many places. I presume eternal darkness will rest on this subject, and hide from the search of inquiry all knowledge of the people who made these earthen pyramids.

A most curious mound of rock, made not by man, but by nature, stands proudly majestic in the Mississippi River, and is


called, in honor to it, the "Grand Tower." It is situated on the western side of the Mississippi, not far from the mouth of Big Muddy River, in Illinois.

If the father of waters is permitted to take frolics, the Mississippi committed one when it left its old channel some miles above the Grand Tower, making a new bed through the solid rocks and hard earth. I have often examined this section of the Mississippi, and can say that it is surprising what could have caused the river to leave its ancient channel, and the bottom, five or six miles wide, and rush its volume of water through rocks and the solid bluff. By the river leaving its ancient bed, a high bluff, six miles long and almost a mile wide, is left as an island, the river running on the west side and the ancient channel and bottom on the east. I have been on this bluff, and it is as high, and similar to the high land on either side of the river. The rocks are perpendicular in many places on the eastern side of this island bluff, showing unmistakable traces of the action of the waters of the river in remote ages. In high water, much of the river floods leave the present river and pass out through its ancient channel. For six or eight miles this new channel of the river has no low land, or bottom, on either side, which is found nowhere else on the river, except, perhaps, at the rapids of the upper Mississippi. In this lusus natura of the Mississippi, it has washed away the rocks and earth from the rock known as the Grand Tower, and left it eighty or one hundred feet high, rising out of the river, on the top is an area of about half an acre. I have been on it, and seen hundreds of names carved on the rocks and scrubby trees on the top.

Above the upper rapids of the Mississippi, in very high floods part of the water of the river passes through a channel, and enters Rock River. This channel was called by the French Marrais d' Ogee, and they often navigated it with their light crafts, and entered the Mississippi again through Rock River — thus avoiding the rapids.

Chapter LII.

The Further Extension of the Settlements. — Peoria. — Counties Created. — The Diamond Grove. — The Indian Name of Sangamon. — More Counties Formed. — Tobacco and Castor Beans in the South of Illinois. — Train Oil at Peoria.

As soon as the State government was established an increase of immigration commenced and continued to flow in. A more wealthy and permanent population settled in the State, purchased lands, and made better settlements. Schools were established in neighborhoods and houses of worship were erected


in many colonies. The farmers raised a surplus of products, and considerable was exported. Commerce commenced to assume that regular system which is necessary to its permanency and success. Mills were erected, and all the necessaries to a well-organized and happy community were commenced in the new State of Illinois. But the dearth of the currency, and the people vastly in debt, retarded the growth and prosperity of the country considerably, yet not entirely.

In April, 1829, Abner Eads, J. Hersey, and some others, left St. Clair County, and located in Peoria. This was the first settlement of this city by the Americans, and in a few years an Indian agency was established in it.

Peoria is the most ancient settlement west of the Alleghany mountains.

On the lake, east of the present city of Peoria, La Salle, with his party, made a small fort in 1680, and from his hardships, called it and the lake Crave Coeur, in English, Broken Heart. Indian traders, and others engaged mostly in that commerce, resided at the "Old Fort," as it was called, from the time La Salle erected the fort, in 1680, down to the year 1781, when John Baptist Maillet made a new location and village, about one mile and a half west of the old village, at the outlet of the lake. This was called La Ville de Maillet; that is Maillet City. I think at the Old Fort, as it was called, there was not much cultivation of the earth achieved; but the inhabitants depended mostly on the Indian trade and the chase for a support. At the new settlement, gardens and small fields of grain were cultivated by the inhabitants.

In 1781, the Indians, under the British influence, drove off the inhabitants from Peoria, but at the peace of 1783, they returned again. In 1812, Captain Craig wantonly destroyed the village, but the city of Peoria at present occupies the site of the village of Maillet, and bids fair to become one of the largest cities in Illinois.

The whole frontier, from the Mississippi down and around the settlements, to the Wabash River and above Vincennes, were extended every year; the interior, also, grew more dense and more wealthy.

The north-west section of the State commenced now in earnest to grow; and in 1821, the counties of Montgomery, Sangamon, Green, and Pike were formed. The "military bounty land tract" commenced to settle, soon after the peace, by the soldiers who had served in the war with Great Britain. Some French families, with John Shaw at their head, located near the mouth of the Illinois River, and the Ross family settled near Atlas, the old county-seat of Pike County.

In the eastern part of the State, the counties of Hamilton and Lawrence were established in 1821. In two years after the


formation of the State government, nine counties were organized and put into operation.

The most beautiful region of country north of Green County, and west of Sangamon, having in the centre the Diamond Grove, commenced to settle in 1819, and in 1823, was formed into a county. A member of the legislature proposed the name of Morgan for the new county, and it was adopted by acclamation, in honor of General Morgan of the Revolutionary army. I was present, and my heart responded to the name with enthusiasm.

Edgar County was established on the eastern border of the State in the year 1823, and is now one of the finest counties in the State. It was called Edgar in honor of General John Edgar, who had left the British service and joined the Americans in the Revolution. He had settled in Kaskaskia in the year 1780, and had then recently died.

Marion County was established in 1823; and the country in the interior commenced to populate with rapidity.

Only three counties were organized in these two years, from 1822 to 1824, which is proof of the difficulties and embarrassments of the people of that period.

About this time Sangamon County became famous and known all over the West as the most beautiful country in the valley of the Mississippi. It acquired a great reputation, as it deserved, for its exceedingly fertile soil and fine timber, which last advantage attracted a numerous, respectable, and wealthy population from Kentucky, who settled in it. The first settlements commenced in 1819. The Indians, long before a white man saw the Sangamon country, were apprised of its fertility and rich products. In the Pottawatomie language, Sangamon means "the country where there is a plenty to eat." According to our parlance, it would be termed "the land of milk and honey." But, in fact, most of the Prairie State is as equally attractive and good as the Sangamon.

The "Military Bounty Tract," lying north of the Illinois River, increased its population during these years more, perhaps, than any other section of the State. Land could be procured there cheaper than the Congress-price in the other parts of the State.

The counties of Adams, Calhoun, Fulton, Hancock, Henry, Knox, McDonough, Mercer, Peoria, Schuyler, and Warren, were established in the tract of country north of the Illinois River, in the years 1824 and 1825. Henry, Mercer, and Peoria were established by law; but they were not organized until a certain amount of inhabitants settled in them.

So many counties being established nearly at the same time, shows the rapid settlement of the country. The counties of Putnam, Wabash, Clay, and Clinton were organized in the same two years, 1824 and 1825.


The southern interior counties commenced to cultivate tobacco and the castor-bean, about this period, and have made these products articles of considerable exportation.

Not far from this period, John L. Bogardus commenced an enterprise at Peoria Lake — to make tram oil out of the vast quantities of fish that he caught in the lake. He made some oil, but the extremely fetid smell of the putrid fish, "the ancient fishy smell," of which Falstaff complained, made it unpopular, and he abandoned it.

The population of Sangamon was celebrated for raising fine-blooded stock, horses and cattle, which enriched the country considerably. Sangamon County is the great patriarch of agriculture in the State.

The increase of population in Illinois, from 1810 to 1820, is very extraordinary. The number of inhabitants, in 1810, was 12,382, and in 1820, it was 55,211, an increase in ten years of 42,829.

Chapter LIII.

Convention to Introduce Slavery into Illinois. — Revolutionary Proceedings in the Legislature. — Excited Discussion. — Parties Arrayed. — Public Journals Issued Flaming Documents. — About Eighteen Hundred Votes Majority Against the Call for a Convention.

IT is almost incredible what injury the failure of the currency produces on the people, and what expedients will be resorted to for relief. There seems to be no reason why the absence of a few dollars from the wealth of a people should effect the community to such an alarming extent.

The old State Bank and the stop-laws were resorted to as measures of relief. The debts were crushing the energies of the people, and almost any expedient was tried to relieve the community of these calamities.

It was this ground, to relieve the people from the embarrassments of debt, and to put the country in a prosperous and growing condition, that was the foundation of the convention project. If the deranged state of the currency had not existed, and the country had been in a happy and prosperous condition, a convention to introduce slavery would never have been dreamed of.

At that day, north-western free States were poor and sparsely inhabited, and the southern States of Kentucky, Tennessee, and Missouri, having slavery in them, were our nearest neighbors, and nourished tolerably well. Wealthy and intelligent farmers moving to Missouri, seeing our excellent soil, regretted they could not stop with their slaves in Illinois, which fired our people for slavery.


Slavery at that day, (thirty years past,) was hot tested as it is at this time, and was not so condemned by any one as it is at this day. Moreover, many citizens voted for the convention for be gradual emancipation of slavery, by having it provided in the amended constitution, that, after a certain period, slavery should not be introduced into the State, and those in the State should be gradually emancipated. It was true wisdom, as it turned out, to have nothing in any shape or form to do with slavery. I voted for the convention, as a measure to advance the best interest of the country, and that the introduction should be only for a limited period. After that, those in the State should be gradually emancipated, but we were all mistaken for supporting the convention.

The constitution of the State at that time required a resolution of two-thirds of both houses of the legislature to vote for the subject being submitted to the people, who would vote for or against calling a convention. The members of the General Assembly of 1822, were not elected in reference to the subject of slavery, but it happened that in the Senate there was two-thirds for the resolution, but in the other branch one member was wanting to carry the convention question.

A contested election from Pike County had been adjudged in the early part of the session in reference to the Senatorial election, and was decided manifestly wrong. After the member, Nicholas Hansen, voted in the Senatorial election, and would not vote for the convention, it was decided to turn the member from Pike County out, and put in his opponent, John Shaw, so as to carry the convention resolution. This proceeding in the General Assembly looked revolutionary, and was condemned by all honest, reflecting men. This outrage was the death-blow to the convention. The night after the passage of the resolution, there was at the seat of government a wild and indecorous procession by torch-light and liquor, that was also unpopular.

The convention question gave rise to two years of the most furious and boisterous excitement and contest that ever was visited on Illinois. Men, women, and children entered the arena of party-warfare and strife, and the families and neighborhood were so divided and furious and bitter against one another, that it seemed a regular civil war might be the result. Many personal combats were indulged in on the question, and the whole country seemed, at times, to be ready and willing to resort to physical force to decide the contest. All the means known to man to convey ideas to one another were resorted to, and practised with energy. The press teamed with publications on the subject. The stump-orators were invoked, and the pulpit thundered anathemas against the introduction of slavery. The religious community coupled freedom and Christianity together, which was one of the most powerful levers used in the contest. At


one meeting of the friends of freedom in St. Clair County, more than thirty preachers of the gospel attended and opposed the introduction of slavery into the State.

I believe the most influential and energetic public men were on the side of the convention, but the opposition was better organized and trained in the cause. The facts and arguments were the strongest on the merits of the subject in opposition to slavery, which had its effect in such long discussions before the election.

"The question," as it was familiarly called at the time, united the various denominations of religion which had never before acted together.

The leaders of the convention-party were Governor Bond, Kane, McLean, Judge Phillips, A. P. Field, Joseph A. Beaird, Robison, Smith, Kinney West, R. M. Young, and others. The opposition was headed by Governor Coles, the Rev. John M. Peck, Judge Lockwood, Daniel P. Cook, Judge Pope, Governor Edwards, Morris Birkbeck, David Blackwell, Hooper Warren, Henry Eddy, George Forquer, George Churchill, and various others.

The opposition to the convention labored with more enthusiasm and devotedness for the cause than the other side, and organized better and sooner. As soon as the convention-resolution was carried in the legislature, the Rev. Mr. Peck had a meeting called in St. Clair County, and a constitution adopted to operate against the introduction of slavery in Illinois. Head-quarters were established in St. Clair County, and fourteen other societies were organized in so many counties, all acting in unison with the main society in St. Clair County. A perfect organization was kept up during the canvass throughout the State, which was effected more by the exertions of the Rev. Mr. Peck than any other person.

Hopper Warren, in his paper, the "Edwardsville Spectator," and the paper at Shawneetown, edited by Henry Eddy, together with the "Intelligencer," waged a fiery and efficient warfare during the whole canvass.

By the arrangement of Dr. Peck and Gov. Coles, David Blackwell was appointed Secretary of State, and he procured an interest in, and the conductorship of, the "Vandalia Intelligencer," the most widely-circulated newspaper in the State. This was a great lever for the "anties," as the opposition party was called at the time.

It is said Gov. Coles expended all his salary, as governor for four years ($4000) on the canvass, and the members of the legislature of 1822, contributed one thousand dollars for the cause.

The convention party had two papers, ably conducted, one located at Kaskaskia and the other at Edwardsville. The paper at Kaskaskia was managed by Messrs. Kane, Thomas Reynolds


Governor Bond, and others, and that at Edwardsville was under the direction of Judge Smith, Emanuel J. West, McRoberts, and others.

The convention-party did not contribute money, energy, or talents to such extent as the "anties" did; emissaries continually traversed the State in all directions with naming and bitter hand-bills and each party used every character of weapon to act on the passions as well as the judgment of the people. Dr. Peck had the extra vocation to distribute bibles, which gave him an excellent opportunity to see and manage the movements of the opposition. He performed his part with the tact and talent of an experienced general.

Governor Kinney travelled much, and acted with great energy in the cause. The "anties" were victorious in St. Clair County; and Kinney , Moore, and myself were beaten on the question for the General Assembly. At the polls of the elections through the State, the utmost exertions prevailed, but no riots. The aged and crippled were carried to the polls, and men voted on this occasion that had not seen the ballot-box before in twenty years. The opposition succeeded by about eighteen hundred votes majority, and thus ended the most important, and the most excited election that was ever witnessed in the State.

Chapter LIV.

The Land-Law and Tenures of Lands in Illinois.

ILLINOIS has been under four different governments — the French, British, Virginia, and the United States, and each has made grants of land to the inhabitants. The French Government was the first, and as early as 1722, at Fort Chartres, grants of land were made by the crown of France, together with the royal company of the Indies. The first organization of Illinois was a grant by the king of France to Crosat, who had power to make grants of land.

The land-system of the French Government was some similar to that of the United States. The tracts were always adjacent, leaving no lands intervening between the grants. The French did not lay off the public lands on the cardinal points, or in square tracts, as the Americans do, but commenced the location of the lands to suit the situation of the country. The tracts of land under the French system were generally narrow, and extending from a river or some other notable point back considerably. The grants were made by the measure of the French arpent; being so many arpents in length and so many in width. The French acre or arpent is eleven and sixty-seven hundredths and a fraction English rods, being the square of an arpent.


When the British Government occupied the country under the cession of 1763, they also made grants of land to the inhabitants. These British grants were surveyed as the grantees pleased, without much system or reference to the cardinal points. After the country came into the hands of the Americans, the Government of Virginia made grants of land before the cession of the country in 1782 to the United States.

In 1788, the United States recognised all the valid grants of land made by the former governments, and made other grants themselves to the inhabitants. Also, in 1791, acts of Congress were passed making grants and donations of land to the inhabitants. In the year 1790, the Governor of the North-western Territory was authorized to adjust the land titles of the settlers, and the same power was continued with the governors of the Territory, down to the year 1804, when certain commissioners of the land-office were appointed to settle the land-titles. These commissioners remained in office for almost ten years, and they and the governor of the Territory adjusted the land-titles to all the lands in the country before the first land-sales at Kaskaskia, in the year 1814. The unadjusted titles to the lands before the sales in 1814, greatly retarded the settlement of the country, to my own knowledge. No one will improve or do much on lands when the title is not secure.

The Government allowed a militia donation of one hundred acres, to be located on whatever land the owner pleased. Many availed themselves of these land-warrants to cover their plantations, or some especial tract of land. These land-rights sold for about seventy-five cents per acre. Many of the citizens resided on Government lands until 1814, and many of them for many years afterward.

A kind of common-law was established by common consent, and common necessity, which is fifty years old in the West, that the improvements on Congress land shall not be purchased by any person except he who made the improvement. This is a kind of domestic pre-emption law. An act of Congress gave a pre-emption to all on the public lands on or before the year 1813. The adjustment of the land-titles and the sale of the public lands did much to settle the country.

The land-system of the United States is founded on true philosophy. All lines are run on the cardinal points except fractions; so that all the lands are embraced at once in the survey, and none left out. These lines answer well, also, for the civil government of the country, making county lines and others. Houses may be erected on the cardinal points, so that the family may know that the dinner should be on the table the same time the sun is on the meridian.

This land-system being so correct and simple, disputes in relation to land-titles are kept down, which is one of the


greatest blessings to the country. A people will not prosper when the land-titles are not valid and good. The land-tenures in Illinois, emanating from the General Government, are generally good, and very little litigation is had on them.

Chapter LV.

Fun and Frolic in Primitive Illinois.

MANKIND, by a wise law of Providence, enjoys, in various situations, times, and countries, about the same amount of happiness. If this was not the case, Providence would be unjust to his creatures, which is not the fact. The Supreme Being, in the fullness of His adorable perfections, has meted out to all human beings nearly the same happiness, if the person himself will do his duty; but if an individual will violate the laws of his existence, he will inevitably receive misery and pain as a punishment in proportion to the violation. All classes of people enjoy about the same amount of happiness. Burns, the poet of nature, sings:

"Dearly bought this hidden treasure,
Finer feelings can bestow;
Chords, that vibrate the sweetest pleasure,
Thrill the deepest notes of woe."

In pioneer-times, pranks and tricks played off on one another was a prominent element in the amusements and mirth of that early day. It entered then into the hearts of the people to enjoy these pranks with more pleasure than the money-making people do of the present day.

An individual, (William Lemen,) now a resident of Monroe County, only a few miles distant from the place where he was born, of an excellent and respectable family, and he himself a man of rare and good talents of this order, has performed, with ingenuity and adroitness, more tricks and pranks than would fill a volume. In his neighborhood, at the house of Andrew Kinney, was a night-meeting, and the congregation were zealous and devout. This religious meeting was held in a small log-cabin, with only one window. When the congregation were all down on their knees devoutly in prayer, and their heads bowed down, this singular and talented individual, Lemen, threw a small calf through the window into the house. The calf was kept in a pen behind the house, and when it was thrown in through the window, it knocked the only candle down, which was burning on the table under the window. The calf bawled out in the darkness in the midst of the congregation. The females screamed out, and were terrified nearly to death, as they supposed the "Old Boy" had jumped in through the


window to seize them for their sins. After much confusion and shouting, the candle was again lit, and behold, there stood the calF.

In pioneer-times, in Illinois, the people were not so ambitious to acquire wealth as they are at this day, and enjoyed themselves more in such amusements as above narrated; but the happiness of the people is enjoyed more at this time in the accumulation of wealth and honorable distinctions in society.

Chapter LVI.

The Early Elections in Illinois for Governor and other Officers. — Re-organization of the Judiciary.

IN August of 1822, was the general election in Illinois for the State and Federal officers. Four individuals appeared before the people as candidates for governor of the State, and two for Congress. Joseph Philips, Thomas C. Browne, James B. Moore, and Edward Coles, offered their services for governor, and Daniel P. Cook and John McLean, for Congress. In this election very little excitement existed, and no measures were discussed, except the slavery question, in certain districts of the State.

Joseph Philips was a Tennesseean by birth, and possessed a fine classic education. He had been educated for the law, and had been an officer in the army during the war of 1812, with Britain. He had been secretary of the Territory, and was, when he offered for governor, the chief-justice of the Supreme Court of the State. He resigned that office on the 4th of July of that year. He possessed good talents and a good character.

Thomas C. Browne was a judge also of the Supreme Court, and a man of good natural mind.

General Moore was a farmer of sound practical sense, and had immigrated with his father to Illinois in the year 1781. He did not possess the advantages of education, but by a long life in public business, had obtained much practical information. He had been, during the war with Great Britain, a captain of a United States ranging-company, that performed excellent service on the frontiers in the above-named war.

Edward Coles was born in Albemarle County, Virginia; in the year 1786, and had received a classic education at William and Mary College. In his youth, he conceived the idea that slavery was an evil, and as a conscientious man, that decision he has never abandoned during his life. He became, after he left college, the private secretary of President Madison, and during the six years that he remained in the President's family, acquired much political and other information. He was bearer


of dispatches to John Q. Adams, at Russia, and made the tour of Europe and returned home a polished and intelligent gentle-man. He visited the West in 1818, and resided some time in the town of Waterloo, in Monroe County, Illinois. He returned to Virginia, and made arrangements to liberate his negroes in Illinois. When the father of Mr. Coles died, about twenty slaves descended to his son, Edward Coles, and these slaves he made free mostly in Illinois. He purchased farms for some of the families near Edwardsville, and made them as happy as possible. About the year 1821, he was appointed Register of the Land Office in Edwardsville, which gave him an opportunity to become acquainted with the people in his land district. Under these circumstances, he was elected governor in 1822, and was in office during the boisterous times of the convention.

Daniel P. Cook beat McLean for Congress, with an increased vote over his previous election, and A. F. Hubbard was elected lieutenant-governor of the State.

In all these elections, the candidates came before the people without any conventions. At that day, the caucus-system was very unpopular, and not resorted to for years afterward. The elections were then, as they are at present, biennial, and the next was in August, 1824. In this election, the slavery question entered largely into the canvass, and governed the vote in many counties of the State.

The election for governor did not come off this year, but the excited and bitter election for and against the convention infused its fury and venom into all other elections.

Daniel P. Cook was opposed to the convention, and his opponent, Governor Bond, voted for it. Cook was again victorious by a good majority.

The excitement and vigor of the elections with the people were transferred to the legislature, and in that body an unnatural and enthusiastic excitement prevailed. This general assembly were engaged in important business this session. Elections for two United States Senators were held. John McLean and Governor Edwards were the candidates for the "short leg," as it was called. Governor Edwards had been appointed Minister to Mexico, and had resigned his office as Senator, for one year unexpired in the term of six, for which he was elected in 1819. He had a difficulty with William H. Crawford and friends, which caused him to resign his mission to Mexico, and also injured him in the State. McLean was elected to the term of one year unexpired, and set off direct to the city of Washington to enter upon the duties of his office. He was at that time, I think, the most popular man in the State with that legislaure, and still remained a candidate for the next term of six years, commencing after the expiration of his one year. His competitor, Elias K. Kane, who was a member of the legislature


from Randolph County, was present with the general assembly, and McLean absent, which was a great drawback on the latter. At this election, Mr. Kane was elected to the United States Senate for six years from the 3d March, 1825.

At this legislature the judiciary of the State was organized and circuit courts established. It was discovered that the labors of the four judges were too onerous and even oppressive and therefore circuit courts were organized, and the judges of the Supreme Court were required to hold two terms of the court annually. The judges of the Supreme Court were required by the legislature to revise and report a new code of statute laws to the next general assembly.

Judge Wilson was elected chief-justice, and Thomas C. Browne, Theopholis W. Smith, and Samuel D. Lockwood, associate-judges. John Y. Sawyer, Samuel McRoberts, Richard M. Young, James Hall, and James O. Wattles, were elected circuit-court judges. James Turney was elected attorney-general. Judge Thomas Reynolds and myself were not retained on the bench, as we had been rather conspicuous in favor of the convention, and that question made all yield to it who had any size to incur its displeasure. The convention question soon cooled off, and the people became calm and friendly with one another again.

In none of these elections were any political measures, either Whig or Democratic, discussed or acted on.

Chapter LVII.

Presidential Election in 1824.

THE administration of President Monroe was calm, quiet, and popular, and the old parties that had agitated the country so long, and with such violence, known as the "Republican" and "Federal" had subsided, and a perfect political calm reigned throughout the country.

At the commencement of the presidential canvass of 1824, no party measure was discussed, and all the candidates had been acting with the Republican party, and were considered to pertain to that party. At first, the candidates were John Q. Adams, Andrew Jackson, John C. Calhoun, Henry Clay, and William C. Crawford. During the summer, Calhoun was withdrawn in Pennsylvania and some other States from the Presidential contest, and placed on the track for Vice-President.

Crawford was the regular nominee-candidate of the Republican party, so called, but his nomination was made by only eighty-seven members of Congress, which gave him no standing. The people considered that the members of Congress


were not elected for that purpose, and such a nomination was an injury rather than advantage to the candidate.

General Jackson had been nominated first by the general assembly of Tennessee, next by Pennsylvania, and some other States.

In Illinois, Crawford received the votes mostly of the Bond or convention party. Adams was supported by the anti-slavery men and mostly those who opposed the convention. Clay was considered then a champion of the war, Republican party, and received many votes of this character of citizens. Jackson was also of the Republican party, but his great popularity arose from his splendid military career. Many citizens in southern Illinois, and in fact all over the State, knew him in the war, ate hickory-nuts with him, and would fight and die for him.

At the commencement of the canvass, no one dreamed that Jackson was so popular with the masses as he turned out to be. On this consideration, some of the friends of Adams, and the opponents of the convention, supported Jackson to take the votes from Crawford, so that Adams would carry the State. It was supposed that the contest in the State would be between Adams and Crawford, but the masses were disposed to support Jackson in spite of the politicians, and did so. The friends of Jackson were not organized as the parties supporting the other candidates were. The State, at that day, was entitled to three electors only, and Jackson received two of them, and very near the third. I voted for Jackson the first, last, and every time he was before the people as a candidate.

The popularity of Jackson was extraordinary from the first time he came before the people, and during his whole Presidential career. It was his democratic principles, unquestioned integrity, his frankness, talents, and decision of character, together with his extraordinary military career, that gave him such high standing with the masses. Colonel Benton said the truth: "Bankers, brokers, jobbers, contractors, politicians, and speculators were certainly against him, as he was against them."

Adams was never popular in the State, and it was the wise and discreet management of his talented friends that got him any electoral vote in the State at all.

Clay had no particularly organized party before or during the canvass, but he stood extremely well with the masses. He was the second choice of the State, and was my second choice also.

The Bond party that supported Crawford was the best organized in the State, and the leading members were efficient, talented men, but Crawford was a stranger to the people, and they preferred a Western man — Jackson or Clay.

At that day in the United States, there were 261 electoral votes in all, and it required 131 to make an election. Jackson ad in the whole Union 99 votes, Adams 84, Crawford 41, and


Clay 37. No one having a majority of all the votes, the election of President by the Constitution devolved on the House of Representatives, which will be narrated in another chapter.

John C. Calhoun had no organized opposition for the Vice-Presidency, and received one hundred and eighty-two votes which elected him.

Chapter LVIII.

Parties Commenced in Illinois. — Election of Joseph Duncan to Congress.

DANIEL P. COOK, the Member in Congress representing the State, pledged himself, in the canvass of 1824, when he ran in opposition to Governor Bond, that if the necessity occurred he would give the vote of the State for the presidential candidate who received from the people the most votes throughout the State. On this pledge he was elected. When the election of the President came before the House of Representatives — Jackson Adams, and Crawford being the candidates — he cast the vote of the State for Adams, which, with the other votes, elected him to the presidency.

This election of Adams over Jackson was the commencement of that fierce and violent party contest that existed in Illinois, more or less, since 1824 to the present time. The friends of Jackson and Crawford generally united on Jackson, and those supporting Adams and Clay, in Illinois, mostly did battle afterwards under the banner of Adams.

The contest, directly after the election, seemed to rise among the people as if by a kind of instinct, and party rage and violence swept over the State like a tornado. The people thought Jackson was cheated out of the election, and that their choice was disregarded. There was no substantial objection to either Adams or his administration, but the warm, enthusiastic partizans urged violent means in the support of Jackson. The other party was more sedate, quiet, and less violent, but equally decisive.

The Adams party first assumed the name of "National Republicans," and afterward "Whigs." The Jackson party, having their republican name taken from them, called themselves Democrats, or the Jackson party. Thus these parties became organized, and the people took sides without the convention system. This system was still very unpopular in the West with all parties. Under the organization of these parties, discussion of measures commenced, and the newspapers, what few there were, teemed with it. The stumps were crowded with orators, and the pulpit was not always clear of political discussions.


It may not be out of place here to state, that although I was enthusiastic for Jackson, yet I never attempted to make party political speeches in the cause until long after his election to the presidency. I was diffident, not in the habit of public speaking and at the time disliked stump speeches, although they commenced in Illinois in this canvass. Now I am satisfied I was mistaken, as public discussion is one of the many essential means of enlightening the public mind. Orderly and intelligent discussion is ever essential to the liberties of a people, and should be encouraged.

The southern part of Illinois was settled mostly by immigrants from Tennessee, Kentucky, and the South, where stump speeches were practised, and they adopted the same system. No matter what the office might be, down to constable, the candidates must declare their sentiments, as it was called. The northern part of the State did not adopt the system so soon as the south, but at this day public discussion is practised all over the State.

Under this state of party feeling in Illinois, Cook became a candidate again for congress, and was, before his vote for Adams, the most popular man in the State. Cook's popularity was founded as much on his urbanity of manners, his gentlemanly deportment, and benevolence of heart, as on his capacity for office, or on the policy of his measures. The people disliked to give him up, and many of his old friends, although they were red-hot for Jackson, still supported him. In truth, Cook's old opponents for congress got so much beaten down that they feared to oppose him again, even after his vote for Adams; but a young man, of an agreeable and amiable disposition, Joseph Duncan, a native of Bourbon County, Kentucky, who had been both in the war with Britain, and in the State Senate of Illinois, entered his name as a candidate for congress against Cook. Most of the people had not the least idea that Duncan would hold a respectable poll in opposition to Cook. No one then knew the rage and violence that party spirit did assume in that canvass, which existed in Illinois in the year 1826. Duncan was modest, of moderate talents, and made short, commonsense speeches. He had no political sins to answer for, and made himself popular wherever he appeared. He was an ensign in the battle at the Lower Sandusky, under Croghran, and acquitted himself well; he had also performed his duties in the Senate of the State to the satisfaction of the public. Cook, during all the canvass, tried to explain away his vote, and to sustain Adams, but it all would not do; Duncan was elected by the Jackson party by a large majority.


Chapter LIX.

The Arrival of General La Fayette in the United States in 1824. — His Visit to Illinois in 1825.

THE whole Union, from one extreme border to the other experienced a general joy and gratification on the arrival of Gen. La Fayette in the United States. In this great national outburst of gratitude and general rejoicing, no party or bitter feelings interposed, and the whole nation hailed the hero of the Revolution with those honorable and patriotic feelings that were due to the immortal character of La Fayette. He arrived at St. Louis, Missouri, the last day of April, 1825, and a great concourse of people attended and greeted him.

I resided at that time near St. Louis, and heard early in the morning thirteen cannon fired in honor of the hero, and "the times that tried men's souls." These thirteen cannon awakened all my patriotism for him and the Revolution, and placed me in my feelings, in the midst of it. Our Representative in Congress, the Hon. Daniel P. Cook, introduced me to him, and I had the honor to behold, with admiration and respect, this great and good man. He was lame from a wound he received in achieving our liberties, which added much interest to his character. Governor Coles, the governor of the State, escorted him to Vandalia, the seat of government of the State, and also to Shawneetown. At this latter place, Judge Hall, then a citizen of Illinois, delivered him an address on behalf of the citizens of that town, which, for its neatness and elegance, was a model of composition, and also admirably expressed the sentiments of the people of Illinois to that distinguished individual.

When I saw General La Fayette in St. Louis, he was sixty-eight years of age, and he showed on his countenance the signs of much care and anxiety. His person was slender, and at least six feet high. Age had bent his form a little, but he was still gay and cheerful. It seemed that his lameness added to his noble bearing, as it told to the heart the story of the Revolution. Judging from my visit to him, I would say that he possessed, in an eminent degree, all the amiable and benevolent traits of character that elevate and adorn the human family. It appeared to me that delicate and refined sensibility reigned strong in his character, and that chivalry and honor had a strong resting-place in his heart. These traits were, in my opinion, dominant in his character, and out of them arose his patriotism and love of liberty that showed so conspicuously throughout his long and eventful life.


Chapter LX.

The Author Practices Law. — Is Elected for the First Time to the General Assembly in 1826.

IN the spring of 1825, I entered closely and attentively into the practice of the law. I studied the science with care and attention. I attended rigidly and with great care to my business in court. Punctuality in court — always present and ready — insures business and success. I entered into a tolerably large practice immediately, but it was not very profitable, and I must be permitted to say, that I never knew a lawyer in the State who ever became very wealthy by his practice alone. It is speculation, and the rise of property in the West, that has made so many lawyers and others wealthy. I was lean, active, and energetic, and could ride on horseback days and nights together without much sleep or rest. But I had been so long on the bench, where public speaking was not practised, that when I appeared at the bar, as a lawyer, my old diffidence also appeared with me, and it was an effort at first to address the court or jury. For some time in the courts I was quite a silent member, and knew well my silence in many cases injured the interest of my clients, but by repeated efforts I succeeded to some extent. During my practice of law, I was familiar with the people, got acquainted with almost everybody, and become somewhat popular. I had no settled object in view as to my future course of life, more than to make a living, and to continue on in my humble, peaceable, and agreeable manner.

For many years before 1830, when I offered for governor of the State, I had no political ambition or aspirations for office whatever. I was happy, enjoying fine health and the vigor of life, possessing neither wealth nor poverty, having a full share of the practice of the law, and enjoying a pleasant and familiar intercourse, with society. I owed no debts, and stood in no one's way; had friends everywhere more than I deserved, and in no office; speculated not much, and lived very happy at home. In our domestic concerns, we were plain and unpretending — nothing like extravagance in anything — never kept any liquor in the house, although the custom of the country then was to the contrary. I drank none, and I treated my friends when they called on me with all possible civility, except strong drink. We used an economy perhaps bordering on Parsimony, but it is better to err on the side of prudence and economy than on the side of extravagance and recklessness.

The above is a "peep behind the curtain" of the domestic life of the author for a short period.


In the spring of 1826, Governor Edwards and the convention party assembled at Belleville, and selected a full ticket for all the county officers, sheriff and all, of St. Clair County. Of course, I and my friends were not included. The convention party rallied, and every one of our party were elected except one county commissioner. I was elected to the house of representatives of the State Legislature. I did not then consider this post a great office, and I entered into it as much to gratify my friends and the people as myself. This was the first attempt I made to manage an election. I was well acquainted with the people of the county, and knew what kind of an organization would succeed. We succeeded over the efforts of Governor Edwards and the old anti-convention party. The Governor was hostile to me, and published many severe and bitter handbills against me during this election and the succeeding one of 1828.

I soon discovered that a seat in the house of representatives of the general assembly is one of the most efficient offices, "for weal or for woe," to the people, of any in the government. The House is elected directly by the people, and is, in fact, the people in miniature. All the laws which direct and govern our most important and sacred rights and privileges, emanate from the State legislatures. The general assemblies of the States have the power to do infinite service to the people, or they may curse them with foul and corrupt legislation.

I entered this legislature without any ulterior views, and with an eye single to advance the best interests of the State, and particularly the welfare of old St. Clair County. My only ambition was to acquit myself properly, and to advance the best interests of the country.

Chapter LXI.

The Election of Governor and Lieutenant-Governor of Illinois in 1826.

IN this canvass, three candidates appeared in the field — Ninian Edwards, Thomas Sloo, and A. F. Hubbard. The last-named candidate had been elected lieutenant-governor, and he supposed it was a matter of course to elect him governor. The contest was between the two first-named candidates. Mr. Sloo had been a member of the general assembly for many years, and was a gentleman of agreeable manners and irreproachable character. He had, by his urbanity of manners and gentlemanly deportment, obtained many friends throughout the State. He had been employed in business as a merchant, and in it he had not been in the habit of public speaking, which operated against him, particularly when Governor Edwards was his opponent, as Edwards was an accomplished orator.


The Jackson party, which was not then properly organized, supported Sloo. If the party had been trained then as it was some years afterwards, Sloo, no doubt, would have been elected.

Governor Edwards was a gentleman of acknowledged talents and eloquence, who had been for many years in the lead of many political campaigns, so that it seemed rather an unfair contest with Mr. Sloo. Edwards possessed a fine, imposing appearance, and did not dislike a showy and splendid display. To counteract these decided advantages, he labored under the charge of the attack he made on Crawford, and also his hearty support of Jackson was questioned. His opponents were bitter and efficient, but after an animated canvass of several months, he was elected by a small majority. He had been in Illinois since the year 1809, and in office most of that time. In this long term of office, he must of necessity have made a great many enemies. Mr. Sloo then had no enemies. Governor Kinney, who was elected lieutenant-governor at the same election, was warmly opposed to Governor Edwards, and said, when Edwards was elected, that "the Governor was like an old, weak horse, and that it strained him so much to jump into the cornfield that he could not eat any corn after he got into the field" — meaning that although Edwards was elected, he had not much influence in the office when he was in it.

The candidates for lieutenant-governor were Samuel H. Thompson, and William Kinney — both preachers of the gospel — Kinney was a Baptist and Thompson a Methodist. Both of these gentlemen were talented and efficient in their respective spheres. Kinney was an early settler in the country, having immigrated with his father to Illinois in the year 1797. He had not the means of education, but nature bestowed on him much ability. When he was married, he was almost destitute of the rudiments of education, and to remedy the defect, to some extent, his wife after their marriage instructed him to read and write. He was energetic and ambitious, and had been in political life for many years previous to the election in 1826. He possessed an inexhaustible store of pithy and pointed anecdotes, which he used with effect on many occasions. He was a member of the regular Baptist Church, and with or without their consent, he indulged in all the modes of electioneering of that period. He was wealthy, and had the means to extend to his friends and the people all the liquid appliances of the day. He was considered, what he really was, one of the most efficient canvassers with the people that was in the State. With all this personal influence, he was a simon-pure of the Jackson party.

His opponent, the Rev. Mr. Thompson, was also a very talented and gifted man, possessing much better scholastic education than the other Rev. gentleman, but had not the Knowledge of mankind like his opponent. Mr. Thompson was


one of the leading clergymen of the Methodist Church, and had not been before engulfed in politics. He was very modest and unassuming, and seemed to dislike his position as a candidate for lieutenant-governor. He possessed an irreproachable character, and would not tarnish it by any electioneering act. Mr. Kinney succeeded by a small majority — although he was on the ticket of Mr. Sloo which failed.

Chapter LXII.

Galena. — The Lead Mines in Illinois. — James Johnson Leased the Mines. — Morality of Galena. — Duel with Rocks. — Nicknames. — Joe Davis County. — Fever River.

IN 1823, Colonel James Johnson, of Kentucky, the brother of Colonel Richard M. Johnson, leased the lead mines of the general government, and entered the mines with a company and all the necessary implements to work the mines. He ascended the small stream known now as Fever River, as far up as his boats could navigate it, and then made his camp. In this vicinity stands the present wealthy, intelligent, and commercial city of Galena. It is situated seven miles up Fever River, from the Mississippi, and at the extreme point of navigation of that small stream. The miners, merchants, and others, squatted on the government lands in Galena, and a large town was erected on the public domains.

I first visited Galena in 1829, and found a most singular and mysterious medley of people located in that place. People from all quarters of the earth had flocked there on account of the celebrity of the lead mines. The Irish prevailed there more than any other European people. Numbers of French were there also, and many immigrants had left Lord Selkirk's colony on Red River in the North and located in Galena. I presume every State in the Union was represented in the mixture of population of this town. I think the State of Illinois furnished more of the population of the mining district than any other.

Galena and the mining district were more moral than might have been expected among such heterogeneous masses. I know at that day there was a great amount of intelligence in Galena, and society existed in that town, at this early day, as enlightened and as polished as will be generally found in any settlement, old or new, of the same size. But still, many indulged in habits not recognized in any part of the decalogue. I could hear and see, within a small compass of Galena, on the Sabbath-day, preaching, dancing, cards, billiards, and other games, together with an occasional horse-race on the flat ground, at that day between the town and river.


Mr. Kent was in the pulpit and the dancers on the floor of a Mr. Durant, a Frenchman, from the settlement of Lord Selkirk, at the same time, on the Sabbath. Many games were going on in open day, and that on the Sabbath, at the same time, but with all this mixture of human actions, other crimes or misdemeanors were not common. The dancing and gaming were generally confined to a class of people who had been educated to believe it was not a sin to act in this manner, which lessened the transgression in the eyes of philosophy.

A most singular duel was fought in the mining district at this early day. Thomas Higgins, of Fayette County — the same person who had such a terrible battle with the Indians in 1814, and another champion, fell out, and agreed to fight a duel with rocks. The same size and number of rocks were selected by their seconds, and the parties placed at their posts, ten yards apart. The combatants were to throw the rocks at each other at the time mentioned by the seconds. The rocks were placed in a pile, so that the parties could use them as they pleased Higgins was so strong, courageous, and expert in throwing rocks that his opponent was forced to flee to save his life. This was a kind medium duel between the murderous pistol and the brutal pugilation, but still highly condemnable by refined civilization and Christianity.

Many fine houses were erected in Galena, and lots laid off before the squatters had any title at all to the premises, except public opinion. The wise law of necessity was honorably respected, and great amounts of property were held in security under it. The pre-emption right by Congress, and more so by the people interested, was observed with rigor and fidelity. Some years after, an act of Congress was passed, laying off Galena and selling the lots to the actual settlers at a reduced price.

The great fortunes made by many, and the success of Colonel Johnson at the "Buck Lead," as it was called, near the present city of Galena, gave the mines such character and standing, that thousands and thousands of people of all grades and classes thronged to the mines. For several years, down to 1834, the whole earth, north, east, and south of Galena was covered with people, prospecting, digging, and looking for lead ore, in all the various manners and modes the mineral could be discovered, and raised out of the earth. It seemed the people were literally crazy, and rushed to the mines with the same blind energy and speed, that a people would in a panic flee from death. The learned professions laid down science, and took up the pick to delve in the bowels of the earth for the ore. Merchants, clerks, farmers and all classes repaired to the mines, thinking each one would be the fortunate mortal, who would return in a few months with a princely fortune. The excitement kept them


healthy, although they lay out winter and summer, in tents exposed to the inclemency of the weather.

It was in the mining district of Illinois, amongst the floods of immigrants, that the names of the people of the various States originated.

The sucker fish ascend and descend the rivers at stated periods, which, from the best information I can obtain, gave the name of "suckers" to the people of Illinois; as those people ascended the river to Galena in shoals in the spring and descended in the fall. For many years, this name was given to and recognized by the citizens of Illinois, as much as the real name. The people became proud of it. General Henry, at a crisis in the battle with Black Hawk, near the Wisconsin, addressed his army as "brave suckers," which excited his troops to the ne plus ultra of their energies.

The citizens of Missouri were called "pukes." It is difficult to ascertain the origin of this name. It was said it was given to the people of Missouri, because a man from that State got drunk and puked. The Ohio people were called "Buckeyes" — the Wisconsin, "Wolverines" — the Indiana people, "Hoosiers" — the Kentuckians, "Corn-Crackers," and so on, with many other States. These names are now going out of fashion.

In the Legislature of 1826 and 1827, a county was organized, embracing the mining district, which was called Joe Davis County. I proposed the name of Davis in the General Assembly, and John McLean, with much Kentucky enthusiasm, added the name "Joe" to Davis, and it succeeded. It could not be severed in that Legislature, as we tried it often.

This county was called "Joe Davis," in honor of Joseph Hamilton Davis, of Kentucky, who was a great and distinguished man. He was singular and eccentric, but withal, a profound scholar, and an accomplished orator. Except the standard of eloquence, Henry Clay, Davis was reputed to be the next eloquent man in all the West. At that early day, Kentucky produced a host of great men, and eloquence among them was advanced to great perfection. Davis stood in the front ranks of this sublime gift of nature to man, shedding the brilliant light of heaven on certain subjects, on which his inspiration was directed. He was killed at the battle of Tippecanoe, in 1811, charging the enemy at the head of his troops. He lived and died sustaining the character of a brave and noble Kentuckian.

Fever River is a small stream extending seven miles from Galena to the Mississippi, and was called by the French La Riviere de Fevre which is Bean River, or creek, in English. The Americans retained the name Fever River, which gives out the idea of sickness, and which neither the orignal meaning of the name nor the truth can sustain, as Galena and the adjacent country are as healthy as any region west of the mountains.


The pursuit of mineral is generally an injury to the public. All the lead ever raised in the mines around Galena would not pay for the work expended in the pursuit. The great collection of people at the mines have a tendency to injure the public morals more than in rural districts, where the people are more scarcely settled.

The city of Galena, and the mining country around it, generally, are wealthy, as both agricultural and mineral wealth concentrate at this point.

Chapter LXIII.

The Author a Member of the General Assembly of the State in 1826 and 1827. — General Assembly. — Their Names. — The Penitentiary.

I was in the leading strings of no man's party, or clique of men, to govern my actions in the General Assembly. It was true I supported General Jackson in 1824, and was honestly and steadfast in the great Democrat family; but I was not proscriptive or collered down to act with the party when I was satisfied it did not advance the best interest of the State. I was depending on the masses for my election, and considered myself bound to support their interest, and not the advancement of a clique, or a few men of any denomination. With certain leaders of cliques, and with "big, little men," as Governor Ford calls them, I was not popular, and I am not to this day. With this unrestrained and liberal policy in view, I entered the legislature with the sole intention to advance the best interests of the State.

It is due to this General Assembly to state, that it was composed generally of members of sound practical sense, and many possessed the first order of talents. It will be seen, by reference to the subsequent history of the State, that many of the members of this legislature became, in after days, distinguished and conspicious public characters, both in the State and Federal Governments.

The members of the Senate were Messrs. Bliss, Bird, Beaird, Casey, Carlin, Lemen, Alexander, Archer, Hay, Hunsaker, Widen, Ewing, Iles, Duncan, Job, Conway, and Kirkpatrick. In the House of Representatives were Messrs. Alexander, of Crawford County, Alexander, of Vermillion County, McLean, Thomas Reynolds, Pugh, Blackwell, Clubb, Mills, Leeper, Churchill, Allen, Hall, James, Lacy, McHenry, McLaughlin, Prince, John Reynolds, Ridgeway, Slade, Wren, Will, Berry, Cavarly, Fletcher, Ives, Leib, Mobly, Prickett, Ross, Sim, Brooks, Dorris, Field, and Utter.

Governor Edwards, as has been heretofore remarked, was the chief magistrate, and William Kinney presided over the Senate,


as lieutenant-governor. George Forquer, Esq., was secretary of State; Abner Field, treasurer; and Elijah C. Berry, auditor.

The General Assembly and the public officers in the Executive Departments of the State Government are above presented, and were for the most part talented and efficient men. The State Government was then in the hands of able men and sound patriots.

John McLean was elected Speaker of the House, but he was taken sick during the session, and Thomas Reynolds was elected to fill his place.

I had reflected on the subject of punishment of criminals, and had reached the conclusion that the criminal law should be changed, and that the ancient barbarous system of whipping, cropping, and branding for crimes, should be abolished and the penitentiary substituted. This ancient practice had been in operation for ages, and it was difficult to change it. There is a kind of reverence and respect for old customs that is troublesome to overcome. But the age required the old barbarous systems of the pillory, the whipping-post, and the gallows to be cast away, and a more Christian and enlightened mode of punishment adopted.

Our constitution was the first in the Union that abolished imprisonment for debt, and it contains this humane provision: "the object of punishment is reformation, and not for extermination" — which shows the spirit of the age. On the same principle, the penitentiary system was established in Illinois — to reform the convicts, and not to exterminate them.

The General Government had reserved a great quantity of the public lands for the use of the Ohio and Vermillion Salines, in this State, and these lands became useless for the manufacture of salt. They prevented the settlement of the country, and it was decided by this General Assembly that thirty thousand acres of the Ohio Saline and ten thousand of the Vermillion Saline should be sold, if the General Government ceded the lands to the State and authorized a sale. The State Treasury was empty, and this was the only means to erect a penitentiary, or to improve the State. No one at that day dreamed of a loan. A memorial, at my instance, was sent to Congress, and in due time the cession of the lands was made and then sold.

It was a kind of an agreement in the State, that the western section should have half of the proceeds of the sale of these lands, and the east the other half. We, in the west, agreed among ourselves that a penitentiary should be erected with our half of the money arising as above stated; and the east agreed to improve the country in their vicinity with the other half. A majority of the General Assembly agreed to this equitable division, and it was also enacted by the legislature, that the penitentiary should be located at Alton; Governor Bond,


Gresham Jane and William P. McKee, were the commissioners to select a site; and on the east, the Cash River Bottoms — Purgatory Swamp — as it was called, nearly opposite to Vincennes, on the Great Wabash River, and other localities, should be improved.

In the legislature much opposition was made by Governor Edwards and his friends to the arrangement, but McLean, Thomas Reynolds, myself, and various other persons, carried the measure through, which established the penitentiary system, and which was, with me, my main measure in the General Assembly. I proposed the site at Alton.

I was, when I was Governor of the State, on my earnest solicitation, appointed by law one of the directors, and the power was conferred on me as Governor, by law, to appoint four other directors to build the penitentiary and to establish the system throughout — our labors succeeded admirably well, and the plan and management of the whole concern is in a manner adapted to the improved and enlightened age of the country. I have never performed a public service that has afforded me more satisfaction than my efforts to aid in establishing the penitentiary, and to adapt the laws to the system. It is too brutal and barbarous to whip, crop, and brand a man in the pillory, if it can be avoided. But one single other amendment do our laws require, and that is to abolish capital punishment, and confine the convicts for murder, during life, in a dungeon. Intelligence and the age of progress will in a few years carry out the system, and then we will prevent an ignorant and debased rabble from rushing in thousands to see a human being hung.

Governor Edwards brought before the people, in the canvass for Governor, the malpractices of the bank directors of the State Bank, particularly the board at Edwardsville, of which Governor Kinney was president, and Senators Iles, Beaird, and many other honest and intelligent gentlemen, directors. Theophilus W. Smith had been cashier for several years, but was then judge of the supreme court. At the first session of the General Assembly, after he (Edwards) was elected governor, he made a general sweeping charge against the whole board and cashier, for mismanagement and malpractices. The friends of the Governor, and the public generally, considered these charges to be at least very imprudent and badly timed. It was true that although Governor Edwards possessed great talents, and a florid, profuse, and flowing eloquence, that he was not gifted with pruence or tact. His object was correct to ferret out corruption, and perhaps some of the board were guilty, or the cashier, but then a sweeping charge against the honest as well as the dishonest could not succeed. He was, during all his administration unpopular with the general assemblies, and in the minority with them all the time.


These charges against the bank-directors created much excitement in the General Assembly, and in the country also. A committee was appointed on the subject, and weeks of investigation ensued. The whole case was referred to the House of Representatives, and all the board were finally acquitted — cashier and all.

This proceeding on the part of Governor Edwards may have done good to deter unprincipled men from committing malpractices in office in future. I opposed the charges on the ground that I knew some of the board to be as honest, good men as ever existed — and to see them crushed in the general sweeping judgment that was required, I considered was not just or right, and, moreover, be the charges true or false, no proof or evidence was made to sustain them.

Chapter LXIV.

Re-organization of the Judiciary. — Revision of the Statute-Laws. — Defining the Instruction of the Court to the Jury. — The Selection of Juries. — The Viva Voce Election in the Legislature. — Resolution Recommending Andrew Jackson for President.

THE subject of the Judiciary was an exciting topic in the legislature of 1826-27. Nine judges, gentlemen of character and standing, all present during the session of the General Assembly, and all working with great industry against the repeal of the circuit-court system, made it a difficult matter with the legislature to carry out the will of the people of the State. The judiciary established in 1825, was extremely unpopular, and many of the members of this present General Assembly were elected on this question. The four supreme-court judges had not much services to perform, and in many sections of the State the circuit courts were not popular. The opposition of the judges delayed the action of the legislature for some time, but at last the law was passed and the new system organized. The circuit judges were all repealed out of office, and the four supreme judges were required to hold all the circuit courts. The circuit-court judges protested against the passage of the law, but public opinion settled down in favor of the change. Although I was acting under no pledge, yet I exerted myself, uncaring of party friends, for the repeal of the circuit-court judges out of office, and was influenced in my action by the poverty of the State. Four judges, almost without any duties to perform, and receiving a salary, induced me to act in the premises.

The General Assembly raised the salary of the judges of the supreme court from eight hundred to one thousand dollars per annum.

Another measure this General Assembly carried out which


redounded much to the character of this body was a partial revision of the statute-laws of the State. It will be remembered that the previous legislature required the judges of the supreme court to make and report to the present General Assembly a complete code of the statute-laws of the State, in accordance with which Judges Lockwood and Smith reported many wise and wholesome bills to the present legislature. The members of the General Assembly also exerted their best talents and energies to revise the statute-laws, and a volume containing upwards of three hundred and eighty pages of the revised laws of the State was the result of the joint labors of the judges and the General Assembly. This code of laws presents, so far as it extends, the best system that ever existed in the State. This volume was printed in 1827 by Robert Blackwell, the public printer, at Vandalia, and contains a code of laws that has never been surpassed in the State.

I recollect the labor that was expended on the revision of these laws. Messrs. David Blackwell, Pugh, Thomas Reynolds, George Churchill, myself, and many others of the House of Representatives, worked day and night on these laws. If nothing more, this effort of the General Assembly leaves a lasting monument of the talents and energy of that body.

It is due also to truth to record that Judges Lockwood and Smith contributed greatly to the result of this excellent revised code. Many private individuals, who were sound lawyers and statesmen, also added much to the work, but it was at last the General Assembly that possessed the sound and discreet judgment to enact this code of laws.

Judge Lockwood, with great care and labor, and with a sound judgment, and acute discrimination, drafted and reported the criminal jurisprudence of the State. This code is a standard work, and will for ages remain a monument of the sound judgment and talents of the author. Legislation has scarcely ever touched it since it came from the hands of the author, and it is considered by all intelligent men who have examined it, a standard and philosophic system of criminal jurisprudence. The General Assembly that enacted it, as far as I recollect, adopted the law as reported by Judge Lockwood, without any alteration or amendment whatever. The next General Assembly completed the revision of the laws.

At this Legislature was enacted the law to restrain the judges of the circuit courts from charging the petit juries on facts, and commenting on the evidence submitted to them. The practice had been commenced for courts to make speeches to the juries, as they considered the law and justice required them to do without being asked for instructions.

I think the court has no power to interfere with the province of the jury, and is not bound to charge them as to the law of


the case on trial, except when one or both of the parties require it.

The practice act of 1827, declares that the circuit courts in charging the juries shall only instruct as to the law of the case. I brought this subject before the legislature as it was passed.

In the General Assembly of 1847, Mr. Linder, of Coles County, brought this same subject before that body, and I advocated with him the passage of a law strong in its terms against the judges of the circuit courts addressing the juries. This last act says that the instructions must be "in writing," and that the court has no power to write, make, or modify them. The parties themselves, and not the courts, write and prepare the instructions, and all the court has power to do in the premises, is to give them or refuse them, by writing the same on the margin of the written instructions. The court shall not "qualify, modify, or in any manner explain the same to the jury." This act was passed the 25th of February, 1847, and is in my opinion a good law.

In the administration of the laws, the juries, grand and petit, are very important. In 1819,1 drafted the bill which was passed on the subject of the juries. This act has been revised and improved, but the substance of it remains the law to this day. I witnessed, in my practice in the courts before this act was passed, that the sheriffs possessed the power to summon what jurors they pleased. This gave these officers unbounded power in the administration of the laws, and on many occasions good jurors could not be summoned on the spur of the occasion.

The act of 1819 required the county court to select from the tax-book twenty-four petit jurors to attend the court, and also a grand jury of twenty-three good and lawful men. This method enables the county courts to select the proper jurors.

In the general assembly of 1827, I introduced a resolution, which passed, requiring the elections in the legislature to be viva voce, and to record each vote given. I presented a similar one in the House of Representatives of the Congress of 1835, which passed that body. It certainly is proper to record the votes on elections in legislative bodies, as the members are not voting for themselves but for their constituents, who may want to see how their representatives vote.

In the early part of this legislature, Colonel A. P. Field introduced a resolution into the House of Representatives recommending Andrew Jackson to the people for the next presidency, and it passed — 19 votes for it, and 11 against it — some of the members were absent. I voted for this resolution, although it is doubtful whether such subjects come within the legitimate province of the general assembly. This general assembly established the principle of the election of judicial officers by the act authorizing the election of the justices of the peace and


constables. It was supposed at the time to be doubtful if the judicial officers ought to be elected by the people.

This legislature created the counties of Tazewell, Perry, Shelby, and Joe Davis, and after a session of seventy-eight days and the passage of one hundred and forty-three acts, they adjourned.

Chapter LXV.

The Winnebago War — Cause of the War. — The Whites Alarmed. — General Dodge and Samuel Whiteside Command Companies. — General Atldnson takes Red Bird, the Winnebago Chief. — Colonel Neal Commands a Regiment.

ABOUT the last of July, 1827, the Winnebago war occurred in the country around and north of Galena, in this State. The cause of this small speck of war was a great outrage committed by the whites on the Indians, which was of such brutality that it is painful to record.

Two keel-boats of the contractor to furnish provisions for the troops at the falls of St. Anthony, stopped at a large camp of the Winnebago Indians, on the river not far above Prairie du Chien. The boatmen made the Indians drunk — and no doubt were so themselves — when they captured some six or seven squaws, who were also drunk. These squaws were forced on the boats for corrupt and brutal purposes. But not satisfied with this outrage on female virtue, the boatmen took the squaws with them in the boats to Fort Snelling, and returned with them. When the Indians became sober, and knew the injury done them in this delicate point, they mustered all their forces, amounting to several hundred, and attacked the boats in which the squaws were confined. The boats were forced to approach near the shore in a narrow pass of the river, and thus the infuriated savages assailed one boat, and permitted the other to pass down in the night. The boatmen were not entirely prepared for the attack, although to some extent they were guarded against it. They had procured some arms and were on the alert to some degree. The Indians laid down in their canoes, and tried to paddle them to the boat, but the whites seeing this, fired their muskets on them in the canoes. It was a desperate and furious fight, for a few minutes, between a good many Indians exposed in open canoes, and only a few boatmen, protected to some extent by their boat. One boatman, a sailor by profession on the lakes and ocean, who had been in many battles with the British during the war of 1812, saved the boat and those of the crew who were not killed. This man was large and strong, and possessed the courage of an African lion. He


seized a part of the setting-pole of the boat, which was about four feet long, and had on the end a piece of iron which made the pole weighty, and a powerful weapon in the hands of "Saucy Jack," as this champion was called. It is stated that when the Indians attempted to board the boat, Jack would knock them back into the river as fast as they approached. The boat got fast on the ground, and the whites seemed doomed, but with great exertion, courage, and hard fighting, the Indians were repelled.

The savages killed several white men and wounded many more, leaving barely enough to navigate the boat. It is said that Jack had four Indian scalps which he took from the same number of Indians he killed himself. In the battle, the squaws escaped to their husbands, and no doubt the whites did not try to prevent it.

Thus commenced and thus ended the bloodshed of the Winnebago war. No white man or Indian was killed before or after this naval engagement.

The Winnebagos were incensed at the intrusion of the whites on their lands in the search of minerals, and the Government of the United States was insulted by an attack the Winnebagos made on some Chippewa Indians, who were in the protection of the United States at the time by a treaty. It is said that eight Chippewas were killed by the Winnebagos.

The American population, miners, amounting to thousands around Galena, under these circumstances were greatly alarmed, and the whole mining country was filled with a kind of panic. The inhabitants were scattered all over the country without arms or any other means of defence, so that a general alarm seized on the people. A goodly number of forts were hastily erected and the militia organized.

Some difficulty occurred between General Samuel Whiteside and General Dodge as to the command of the troops, but the matter was settled by both being elected captains of companies. Captain Whiteside, with his company of cavalry, ranged over the country north of Galena and Wisconsin River, in the country of the Winnebagos, and struck the Mississippi above Prairie du Chien.

The Federal Government ordered General Atkinson, with seven hundred regular soldiers and General Dodge's company, to demand of the Winnebago nation the murderers of the Chippewas. Atkinson proceeded into the heart of the nation, made a treaty, and received Red Bird and other braves from the Winnebagos.

As soon as it could be organized, Governor Edwards ordered out a regiment of mounted troops, to march to Galena and enter into the Winnebago war. The Governor appointed General Thomas M. Neal colonel of the regiment. The troops


were raised out of the counties of Morgan and Sangamon, and marched under Colonel Neal to Galena. When this fine regiment arrived at Galena, the war had closed and they were not needed.

The force of the Americans, together with the bravery of the United States army, going into the midst of the Winnebago nation, subdued the spirit of the Indians, which prevented any further difficulty between the two races.

Many ludicrous and laughable stories are told in relation to this war. It was stated that a chase was indulged in between two parties of whites. One party supposed the other to be Indians and run, while the supposed Indians ran after their comrades to undeceive them. It is said that this race extended for miles over the prairies and timber in the mining country.

In a few months this war closed, and the mining operations were resumed.

Chapter LXVI.

The Author Practises Law. — Party Spirit. — Joseph Duncan Elected to Congress, and the Author to the State Legislature. — The Names of the Members of the General Assembly. — Joint Committee to Revise the Statutes. — School Land Sold. — Common Schools. — Canal Commissioners.

THE country continued to improve and the settlements to extend. The currency was sound and good, and the people exported more produce than heretofore.

I continued the practice of the law, and attended the courts in Monroe, St. Clair, Madison, Green, Pike, Morgan, and Sangamon Counties, when the courts did not clash, and oftener in the Supreme Court.

The country moved on in an even tenor toward its high destiny, and nothing occurred worthy of remark, except that the political parties raged with great bitterness and fury.

About this time, in 1828, the parties known as the Whigs and Democrats were formed in Illinois, and operated with great venom and rage against one another. The presidential election was to take place in November between Andrew Jackson and John Q. Adams, and the whole State was agitated throughout by the canvass.

For Congress, Joseph Duncan, the present member in Congress, and George Forquer were the candidates. Duncan was elected at the August election of that year by a large majority. In truth, a large majority of the State were Democratic, and all candidates for almost any office succeeded on that question.

In the county of St. Clair, Risdon Moore was elected to the


Senate, and William G. Brown and myself to the House of Representatives — all warm supporters of Jackson.

I entered this general assembly as I had the last, without any pledges or restraints whatever. I only was, and am yet, an humble member of the Democratic party. John McLean, of Gallatin County, was again elected speaker of the House without any opposition, and Governor Kinney, as lieutenant-governor, presided over the Senate.

The senators in the General Assembly were Messrs. Archer, Gard, Alexander, Job, Conway, Casey, Hunsaker, Iles, Kitchell, Beach, Moore, Jr., McHenry, Will, Crawford, Carlin, Ross, McLaughlin, and McRoberts.

The members of the House of Representatives were Messrs. Turney, Cartwright, Pugh, Elkins, May, Green, Allen, Rattan, Churchill, Jones, Reynolds, Brown, Lemen, Mather, Menard, Black, Prentice, Carrogan, Kimmel, Field, Whitaker, Whiteside, Dement, Hall, McLean, Prince, Jennings, Eubanks, Stewart, Slocum, Bell, Murray, Gilham, Alexander, Shillody, and Ives.

At the commencement of the session, I introduced a joint resolution to raise a joint committee of both Houses to act together to finish the revision of the laws, which was not completed by the previous legislature. It passed, and Messrs. McRoberts, Alexander, and Kitchell, were appointed on the part of the Senate, and Messrs. May, Churchill, Bell, Turney, and myself, on the part of the House. This committee held their sessions together, and labored incessantly in the performance of their important work — the completion of the revision of all the statute-laws of the State. The committee employed gentlemen "learned in the law" to assist in the revision, and reported to the general assembly a revision of the laws which, together with the volume of the previous legislature, made a good code of statutory law for the State. The act relative to wills and testaments was drafted by Judge R. M. Young, which presents a system on this subject that has remained to the present day, without any material alteration or amendment. This is the best evidence of its correctness, and the wisdom and talents of its author. This volume contains almost two hundred and fifty pages, and has, with the volume of the previous legislature, made the foundation of the present excellent statutory laws of the State of Illinois. I was chairman of the committee; and exerted all my humble abilities in the performance of the work. I believe Illinois is blest with as equitable and just a system of statute-laws as is found in perhaps any other of the States, except Louisiana.

At this session of the legislature, 1829, the school and seminary lands were ordered to be sold, and the proceeds loaned at a high interest. It is doubtful if this policy was good, as the lands in the State have increased so much in value since that


time, and moreover, the land was a better security for the fund than any other. I recollect well my policy at that day. I urged that we, the pioneers, who settled the country first, had strong claims on the school-fund to educate the rising generation of the present time, in 1826 and 1828; and that the children were advancing in years, and that if they did not then receive the benefits of the fund, in a few years they would rise into maturity without an education. This policy prevailed, and the lands were sold for the immediate support of schools. In all my public and private actions, I have labored all in my power to advance education, particularly among the masses. The common-school system is the most difficult, and at the same time the most important subject, that was ever attempted in Illinois. All agree on the general principles, but in the detail, all frequently disagree to such an extent that a general system has never been established to this day, wherein all agree. The immigrants have such a difference of opinion on the subject, that laws could not be enacted to please the masses. It is being attempted at this time to lecture, and inform the people on this subject, so that a proper system of education may be established.

Man is the most incomprehensible being in existence, except his Maker. Parents will labor, and suffer almost martyrdom for their children — provide support, lands, and houses for them, and neglect their education, which is the most important of all considerations. The masses expend more, ten times over, for drink and the use of tobacco, than would give their children good educations.

The counties of Macoupin and Macon were established at this session of the general assembly.

At this session, in 1829, the act of the general assembly passed, authorizing more effectually the construction of the canal connecting the lakes with the Illinois River. I supported this law, and under it Governor Edwards appointed three canal commissioners. Charles Dunn, Gersham Jane, and Edmond Roberts, were the commissioners appointed. Mr. Dunn was a good lawyer, and was afterwards appointed a United States judge in Wisconsin Territory. Mr. Roberts was a respectable merchant of Springfield, and Gersham Jane was an eminent physician, and a gentleman of sound, practical sense, also of Springfield. This board organized, and did all in their power to advance the work, but the funds were not supplied, and the advancement of the canal was limited.

It would require volumes to record the transactions of these legislatures, and of my humble labors in them, but it was my course of conduct in these two sessions of the general assembly that induced my friends, without any solicitation, to offer me as a candidate for governor. I was urged not particularly by the


politicians to offer, but by reasonable and reflecting men, more to advance the interest of the State than my own. My friends knew the party who would oppose me, and they considered that the government of the State would be safer and better administered by our party than the opposite.

Chapter LXVII.

The European Immigration in Illinois.

THE first colony of Europeans who formed a settlement in Illinois were Irish, and located on the Ohio River in 1804 or 1805. Samuel O'Milvany was considered the founder. I presume this colony contained eight or ten families, and had been settled in the United States before they located in Illinois. The English colony, that settled in the Wabash country, was the next.

Morris Birkbeck, who was a man of letters and scholastic attainments, visited Illinois soon after the war of 1812, and wrote sketches of the country. His writings did the country service, by making the advantages of Illinois known abroad.

In 1815, and the following years, a large colony — Birkbeck, Flowers, Pickering, and two or three hundred families — consisting of almost all the avocations of life, from England, located within the limits of the present county of Edwards. A great many in this colony were intelligent and wealthy men. It is probable that no European colony every came to Illinois at any one time with as great numbers and as much wealth as this one did. Birkbeck was the founder, and lived to see the fruits of his enterprise prosper and flourish. He was an author of considerable merit, and wrote many useful works. He was at one time secretary of State under Governor Coles. He was drowned about the year 1828, in a small stream called Fox River, near the Wabash River. His untimely death was much regretted by his friends and the public.

About the same period, a very small colony of Germans — at first only two families, Germain and Markee — settled in a gorge of the Mississippi Bluff, in St. Clair County, not far from the French village, which location was called the "Dutch Hollow." This settlement was the nucleus of the great German population of St. Clair County. I presume at this day there are eighteen or twenty thousand German inhabitants in St. Clair County. Madison, Monroe, and Randolph Counties also contain many Germans.

In 1817, Thomas Winstanley, Bamber, Threlfall, Coop, Newsham, and others, amounting to fifteen or twenty families, from Lancashire County, England, settled on the Prairie du


Long Creek, in Monroe County, and many more families have been added to the colony since its commencement. This colony erected a church, and sustains a Roman Catholic priest. The settlement is flourishing and doing well.

Hobson, and many other English immigrants, settled within the limits of Green County in 1820, and are also doing well.

In 1819, Ferdinand Earnst, a man of literary attainments and much merit, settled at the new seat of government, Vandalia, and located with him a colony of Germans, from Hanover, consisting of twenty-five or thirty families. Mr. Earnst was a gentleman of wealth, and established a store and hotel in his new residence. These Germans were industrious and prudent citizens, occupying their time and attention with their own business.

A colony from Switzerland established themselves on a beautiful location in the south-eastern part of St. Clair County, in 1822. Bernard Steiener was the founder, and was an individual of some energy and competency. Part of this colony occupied an eminence, which, for its beauty and commanding prospect, cannot easily be surpassed. It was called "Dutch Hill," which name it has retained to this day. I presume the colony at first contained between thirty and forty souls, but at this day, other Germans are added to it, until it is now a large and dense settlement of the Teutonic race.

For the last fifteen or twenty years, the Norwegians have been colonizing the north-eastern section of the State, and are now numerous in the region between Lake Michigan and the Mississippi River.

In the county of Monroe, two or three hundred Irish families occupy the south-eastern section of that county. They did not immigrate in a mass, but located by families, or groups, in this region. They are generally industrious people, and have erected a fine Catholic Church — which denomination of religion they profess. This settlement commenced about the year 1844, and is prosperous and flourishing.

In Mercer County, a small colony of Swedes is established, and seems to bid fair to succeed well. They located there within six or eight years past, and have within themselves the elements — mechanics, laborers, clergymen, and others — to sustain the colony on their own resources.

Within a few years, a large and respectable colony of French, from the frontiers between France and Germany, near the Rhine, have located within the county, of Jasper, and are progressing and flourishing with the rise of the State. They have turned their attention considerably to stock-farming — which has added much wealth to their coffers.

Within six or eight years, colonies of Portuguese have been established in Illinois, one in Springfield, and another in


Jacksonville. I presume the whole would amount to five or six hundred souls. They were exiled from the island of Madeira, and are now enjoying their Protestant religion, for which they were banished from their native land. They are innocent harmless, and industrious people. They enjoy pulpit services in their own language, and worship in the manner which is the most pleasing to the Supreme Being, as they may conceive.

Several French colonies from Canada have located in the county of Kankakee, in this State, and are doing well. They have settled here within eight or ten years and are increasing. They are Roman Catholics and sustain several churches.

In all the large cities and towns of Illinois, Europeans, mostly German and Irish, have located to a considerable number within the last fifteen or twenty years, and in some localities the numbers far exceed that of the native Americans. The census of 1850, taken by the General Government, reports the foreign population of Illinois to be 110,593 souls; and from foreign countries in these numbers, are persons from England, 18,628;from Ireland, 27,786; Scotland, 4661; Wales, 572; Germany, 38,160; France, 3396; Spain, 70; Switzerland, 1635; and smaller numbers from other nations. The native population of the United States, located in the State of Illinois, amounts to 740,877. The above shows the relative, population, natives and foreigners, in Illinois, in 1850, to be about one foreigner to every seven native Americans.

Chapter LXVIII.

The Canvass for Governor of the State between Governor Kinney and the Author.

I decided in the Legislature of 1828-9, that I would present myself for something higher than an office in the general assembly, or quit public employment altogether. And in the summer of 1828, I could have been elected to the senate as well as the lower house, but one session more was all I intended to remain in the legislature.

During the session of the General Assembly of 1828-9, the conservative and reflecting members of the assembly, and others from the different sections of the State, spoke to me, and of me, to become a candidate for governor of the State in 1830. My course in the legislature for two sessions, and life and habits generally, induced the leading characters all over the State, to solicit me to offer as a candidate for Governor. A great portion of these friends of mine took this conservative course, as they knew Governor Kinney would be the candidate of the furious ultra-Jackson party, that would govern the State with a rod of iron, as to party rage and proscription.


Proscription for opinion's sake had just commenced, and was only popular with the extreme ultra-politicians, Judge McRoberts had commenced it by turning Joseph Conway out of the office of clerk of the circuit court of Madison County, and it was very unpopular with a majority of the calm reflecting part of community.

Governor Kinney had been to the city of Washington at the inauguration of General Jackson, 4th of March, 1829, and had considerable agency at the federal city, in the proscription visited on the Whigs of Illinois. It was said he remarked, that the Whigs should be whipped out of office "like dogs out of a meat house."

At this time the State was in a rage and fury of party spirit, and Governor Kinney, a popular, talented man, having also, and his friends, the patronage of the General Government under their control, it looked like an impossibility to succeed over him. He and friends deemed it a matter of presumption and folly for me to oppose him. I knew well all this. I also knew that I had always been a consistent warm supporter of Jackson, and I had also the friendship of the masses to secure them for me. I enjoyed the decided friendship of a large majority of the judges of the courts, and the lawyers, who wielded an immense power all over the State. I had served in the war, and in this election they gave me the sobriquet of the "Old Ranger." My opponent was not out in defence of the country, and although a small matter, yet it had an effect in the election. I had the reflecting and conservative influence of the State to support me; but the other party enjoyed the energetic, ultra-furious Jackson-party, with the power and influence of the most popular administration of the General Government as heretofore stated. I was equally the friend of Jackson and his administration, but had little or no credit or standing by it, with the ultra-Jackson party. The Whigs generally voted for me as a second-choice, as they said in preference to Kinney.

Under these circumstances, the canvass commenced early in the winter of 1829. I was announced in the principal papers at the seat of government to that effect. Still, before I was announced, my friends who were also not unfriendly to Governor Kinney, and his ultra-party, advised with them not to give the "Old Ranger" the "cold shoulder," and opposition, as they did, because he and party could combine strength enough in the State to defeat the ultra and proscriptive party, at the head of which the Lieut.-Governor was acting. They did not believe it, but treated me as "an outsider," too mild, and not enough ultra. I would not be used in the unreasonable and ultra-work that many of the Jackson-party wanted to pursue at that day. They wished me to labor for them, and they reap the harvest. I set up for my party and self, which gave to


many members of the Jackson-party great offence. I considered my course right then, and do yet; that was to place so far as I was able, the Democratic party, or the Jackson-party of that day, on sound, reasonable principles, different from the other section of the party. Our opponents entertained the ultra, rabid, and proscribing spirit, while we were more calm and conservative; yet as firm and honest in the party as our opponents of the same party were. On these principles I was elected governor and the progress of public affairs proved them to be right.

Early in the spring of 1829, each party commenced operations. Governor Kinney repaired to the city of Washington, as above stated, to provide for his friends, and I to mingle with the people throughout the State. I attended the courts in every section of the country, and the judges and lawyers were generally friendly with me, which gave me great strength in every county.

At that day the State was poor, and but few public Journals existed in it. The Illinois Intelligencer, edited by Judge Hall, and published at the seat of government, had a wide circulation and wielded considerable influence. This paper supported Governor Kinney warmly. On the other side, we had four papers. One at Shawneetown, ably edited by Col. Eddy, and one other at Kaskaskia, conducted with good ability, by Judge Breese. Another at Edwardsville, under the charge of the talented and efficient Judge Smith, and a fourth at Springfield, conducted by Messrs. Forquer, Ford, and others. These papers were edited by fine scholars, accomplished writers, and gentlemen of distinguished abilities. Judge Hall, the friend of Governor Kinney, conducted his paper through the campaign with marked ability. The conductors of all these journals were finished and polished scholars. Colonel Eddy, of Shawneetown, possessed a sound judgment, and cultivated a particular knowledge of the party-politics of the day. This enabled his paper to do good service in the gubernatorial campaign. Judge Breese, of Kaskaskia, was a profound and accomplished scholar. Nature had gifted him with great powers of intellect, which, combined with his fine scholastic education, made him the most, or, at least, one of the most scientific and powerful writers in the State.

Judge Smith, of Edwardsville, was also a fine scholar, and an excellent writer. The same may be said of Messrs. Forquer and Ford, of Springfield. Ford then, even in his youth, wielded an able and efficient pen.

The Miners Journal was established in Galena in 1827, by James Jones, and it gave me its support.

Judge Hall, whose paper, the Intelligencer, had almost as much circulation as all the other journals, was acknowledged to be one of the most scientific and polished writers in the State, or in the West; and he poured out continual streams of red-hot lava from his press that I felt on many occasions.


I traversed every section of the State, and knew well the character of the people. All my editorial friends, and others, had the utmost confidence in my knowledge of the people, and when I suggested any policy to be observed in their papers or handbills, either refuted or published, these suggestions were exactly carried out as I requested. This caused all acting in perfect unison, which gave our cause great efficiency, acting under one single conductor. These writers had embarked their interests with me, and we were either to rise or sink together, which caused us all to exert our utmost abilities to obtain the victory. The party excitement waxed exceedingly warm and bitter, and these papers flooded the country with the most exciting, fiery, and scathing handbills, as well as their ordinary issues. I would often meet my name appended to a handbill that I never saw before. My friends saw the necessity of such publications, and not knowing where to find me, signed my name to them.

The first stump-speech I ever made on any occasion, was in Union County, in the fall of 1829, and in it I recollect, among other measures, I urged on the people the propriety of constructing the Illinois and Michigan Canal. I was persuaded to mount the stump, as the people expected it. I did not like it. I made rather a clumsy performance as I considered it to be.

Both myself and Governor Kinney addressed the people in public speeches, hundreds and hundreds of times, in this protracted canvass. The people were so much excited, that meetings of the masses could be assembled at any time, and our mode was to give notice for weeks previous to a meeting. I have often addressed the people in churches, in court-houses, and in the open air, myself occupying literally the stump of a large tree. At times, also, in a grocery.

Addresses known as "stump-speeches," received their name, and much of their celebrity in Kentucky, where that mode of electioneering was carried to great perfection by the great orators of that State.

But to return to the "stump." A large tree is cut down in the forest, so that the shade may be enjoyed, and the stump is cut smooth on the top for the speaker to stand on. Sometimes, I have seen steps cut in them for the convenience of mounting them. Sometimes seats are prepared, but more frequently the audience enjoys the luxury of the green grass to sit and lie on.

Often at these stump-speeches the ladies attended as well as the voters. It is much more difficult to make a stump-address than those who never attempted it believe. The orator must know what is right to propose as measures, and he must also make his speech interesting, or otherwise his efforts will be useless. This public discussion is the best for the people, but it is great labor for the speaker. In this canvass I was literally exhausted by speaking and other labors. My last speech I


made, was on the day of the election at Jacksonville, where a vast concourse of people attended. At no time did I say ought against my opponent, but on the contrary spoke well of him as I had reason to do. I said that he was a natural great man, and that the abusive handbills teaming against him were wrong, and that I never circulated one, which was the truth. I observed that my friends were as free to act as I was in the canvass, although I did not sanction these malignant circulars, yet I could not restrain them. This conciliatory course gained me votes. National politics and General Jackson entered largely into the discussions. My opponent and myself did very seldom meet at the same gathering of the people. I was in this canvass the best-abused man in the State. In this campaign, that lasted nearly eighteen months, I used extraordinary exertion, as our party commenced vastly in the minority. Governor Kinney was also very active, and his friends still more energetic than mine, if possible. He possessed fine natural talents, and a fund of anecdotes that could not be surpassed. He used wit, humor, and ridicule to great advantage in his conversation and public addresses. His position as a clergyman was a great drawback on him, and almost all the Christian sects, except his own — the anti-missionary regular Baptists, opposed him. The support of the religious people was not so much for me, but against him. He made unguarded expressions as well as I did, that injured us both, as expressions were caught up and distorted on both sides. He was represented to have said that the Methodists were like the blacksmith's dogs, being used to the sparks of fire in the smith-shop, they could stand the brimstone-fire below. He opposed the canal, and said it would be the means of flooding the country with Yankees. These, and such like expressions, made him many enemies.

It was reported on me, that I said I was as much for Jackson as any reasonable man should be. This expression lost me many votes, as the ultra-Jackson party were so exceedingly hot and bitter, that they supposed me too indifferent.

Many jokes were told on me. One was, that I saw a "scare-crow," the effigy of a man, in a cornfield, just at dusk, and that I said: "How are you? how are you, my friend? won't you take some of my handbills, to distribute." Many other tales were told on me, and some true ones.

The party rancor in the campaign raged so high that neighborhoods fell out with one another, and the angry and bitter feelings entered into the common transactions of life. The ladies were also enlisted in the contest, and many of them electioneered with great force and effect.

It was the universal custom of the times to treat with liquor. We both did it, but he was condemned for it more than myself, by the religious community, he being a preacher of the gospel.


A great amount of money was bet on the election. I always was opposed to betting on elections, and for many years past have opposed gambling in any manner, but when my friends consulted me, as to what majorities they could give, I told them so many hundreds and thousand votes, and not one bet was lost, as I recollect. I mention this to show the exact knowledge I had of the progress of the canvass. I gained this information by knowing well the people of the State. I was, and am yet, one of the people, and every pulsation of our hearts beats in unison.

Many tricks were played on each by the other. One was, that Captain Mathew Duncan had his saddle-bags full of handbills for Governor Kinney, and put up at the hotel at Jacksonville. Our party had their messengers there also with documents for our cause. In the night, our friends took the Kinney handbills out of the saddle-bags of Duncan, and filled them with mine. Duncan distributed the wrong documents for several days, before he found out the trick. The country was crowded night and day, with bearers of handbills, and many were out to electioneer without any printed documents.

The canvass wore me down to a mere skeleton, and I used up several horses during it. My friends waxed warmer than I did. They urged me to be among the people day and night, as they considered I could effect more with the people than any other of our party. I always enjoyed the utmost confidence of the masses, and could always advance our cause by appearing among them, no matter how bitter and strong the opposition may have been. At that day, the people themselves were consulted more than they are at the present. At this time, in 1855, party-conventions and party-discipline decide the elections, without giving the masses that power and strength in elections which a free government and the constitution require.

It is frequently stated by those who have no knowledge of the people, that a candidate will make speeches in a place to suit the people, and in another place different. This is untrue, for if a candidate did so, he could not succeed at all. The people are underrated in this respect. The opposition are always taking notes, and if different they would put down a man in a few weeks, as he should be. These silly statements are all unfounded. When there is a great excitement, every word and expression of the candidates, and even those of their intimate friends, are observed, and commented on. This makes it a matter of the highest moment for a candidate to be, as he should always be, extremely well guarded in his expressions. Governor Kinney lost votes for want of attention to prudence. His unguarded expressions, as well as mine, were frequently exceptionable. The Whigs of that day were not properly organized no more


than the other party, and they were so weak that they proposed no candidate for the office, but made a choice between Kinney and myself. I think the majority of them supported me, saying that I was not their choice, but between two evils they would choose the least. Governor Kinney received the support of many influential Whigs, but I presume not so many as opposed him. I was said to be the "second choice" among the Whigs.

The extraordinary excitement prevailing induced the partisans on both sides to spend great sums of money in the canvass, but I think that our party expended more than the other.

The majority for me was considerable, for the small population of the State at that time, twenty-five years ago.

It is the perfection of the American people to calm down and become quiet and peaceable with one another directly after an election. In a few months after this contest was decided, the good sense of the people caused them to "forget and forgive" all previous bad feelings and bitterness, and amalgamate as one people for the general welfare of the whole.

It may be considered vanity and frailty in me — but when I was elected Governor of the State, on fair, honorable principles, by the masses, without the intrigue or management of party-discipline or corrupt conventions, I deemed it the decided approbation of my countrymen on my conduct, and consequently a great honor. I had been raised in the country, before the eyes of my constituents, and that too in an humble and obscure situation. These circumstances made the generous confidence of the people more highly appreciated by me, and I still hold in my heart the liveliest feelings of gratitude and friendship for the people of Illinois, but were I to live over again another life, I think I would have the moral courage to refrain from aspiring to any office within the gift of the people. I am fully satisfied, by both experience and mature reflection, that a person is happier as a private citizen than as any officer of the government whatever. By no means do I believe a person should be sordid and selfish in all his actions, but it is his duty to advance the public interest all in his power; yet cannot a person be more useful to the public, if he possesses talents, in other situations than in office? A person who possesses the talents and qualifications to instruct and improve mankind, and uses them to that end, is the best friend to the human race. The principles of free government, established and promulgated by Jefferson, John Adams, Franklin, and others, did more service to mankind than their actions in public office could have achieved. The morals and ethics established and given to the world by Socrates, Plato, Confucius, Seneca, and Cicero, do the human family infinitely more service than any action of their authors in office could possibly have done. Moreover, a public officer may toil and


labor all his best days with the utmost fidelity and patriotism, and the masses, who reap the reward of his labors, frequently permit him, without any particular fault on his part, to live and die in his old age with disrespect. Witness the punishment inflicted on Socrates, our Saviour, and many others, for no crime whatever; and witness, also, the punishment, not death, but disrespect and neglect visited on many faithful public servants in the United States. Nevertheless, this contumely and disrespect ought not to deter a good and qualified man from entering the public service, if he is satisfied that the good of the country requires it. It is not the honor or applause of the people that should cause a person to act for the public, but a higher and more noble principle should actuate him, and that is, to advance the best interests of the nation without reference to himself. In such cases, when the faithful public servant can look back and knows he has "acted well his part," his judgment and conscience will approve his conduct, and he is thereby a happy man, independent of the applause or attention of the people. He will experience, by acting it out, the happiness of doing good for evil.

In this canvass was also elected a lieutenant-governor of the State. Two candidates only were before the people for this office, Zadok Casey and Rigdon B. Slocumb, and they are both gentlemen of excellent standing and character, and both are living, respectable monuments of pioneer-worth and merit. Mr. Slocumb, although he possessed a solid judgment and sound mind, had not practised public speaking, and did not indulge in it; nor did he leave his residence, to any great extent, during the canvass. Not so with Mr. Casey; he was active and made-many speeches to the people. He was a natural orator, and his addresses always produced a favorable impression on the masses. He had been in the general assembly for many sessions, and had obtained in that body, and throughout the State, a marked and distinguished character as a man of talents and business habits. Although he had attended a log-cabin school in Tennessee only three months, yet by his own efforts, and comprehensive mind, he had become an intelligent and a well-read man. He had at times occupied the pulpit, which gave him the habit of pulpit-speaking, which was eloquent and at times irresistable. He was modest, retiring, and unassuming; with these qualities, and his activity in the canvass, he was elected, although he was on the ticket with Governor Kinney. Mr. Slocumb and myself were placed by our friends on the same ticket, and the others ran together generally. Being both preachers of the gospel, it injured their tickets, but the activity of Governor Casey, and his opponent remaining at home, decided the contest in his favor.

Governor Casey, by his industry and business habits, together


with the improvement of his mind, made a distinguished and efficient member of Congress for many years. He served on many important committees in Congress, and obtained a high and honorable standing and character in that body. His attention to business, and punctuality in attending the sessions, were remarkable, and with these habits, and his sound mind and judgment, he was a worthy and highly respectable member of Congress. He possessed, in a decided manner, the tact and talent of a presiding officer over deliberative bodies. He presided over the Senate, as Lieutenant-Governor, and the House of Representatives, as Speaker, with dignity and eclat. In Congress, also, he has often presided over the committees of the whole, with distinction, and the marked approbation of the public.

Chapter LXIX.

The Author's Administration of the Government of the State. — Friendship to Opponents. — The First Message. — Education. — Internal Improvements. — The Canal. — The Harbor at Chicago. — Improvement of the Rivers by Congress. — Penitentiary. — Public Lands. The Judiciary.

AT the Gubernatorial election, August, 1830, as it has been already remarked, the State was convulsed and torn to pieces by the bitter and furious excitement of the occasion but, when the cause ceased, the party excitement also commenced to sub side. The papers eased off, and I attended the courts, as a lawyer, as I had before the election, when I had time. I was, as a matter of course, kind, conciliatory, and grateful to the people in my intercourse with them. I had much before me to accomplish to realize what the people expected, and what I really desired to do. My first object was to soften down the public mind to its sober senses. It has been my opinion of my humble self, that whatever small forte I might possess, one was to conciliate and soften down a turbulent and furious people. In the case before me, in 1830, I was determined to act in such a manner that neither my friends or myself would regret the choice of myself for governor. In the first place, I was determined to act rigidly right, and to perform all my duties with mildness and in such a manner that they would be above exception or suspicion. It was my nature not to feel or appear elevated, or excited at my success; but I discovered that my appearance and deportment, at times, might look like affected humility or mock modesty, which I sincerely despise, and then I would straighten up a little. I treated my opponents, and particularly Governor Kinney, with the utmost respect and good feeling.


In order that my readers may know the general tenor of my administration, I give my first message entire:

Fellow-Citizens of the Senate and House of Representatives:

Being called by the voice of the people of this State to the highest office within their gift, it is with unfeigned distrust of my own abilities, and with the deepest sense of the great responsibility of the station, that I enter upon the duties which their kind partiality has assigned me. In entering upon them, all I can promise is, a determination to do all in my power for the public good, and faithfully and honestly to exert myself for the general prosperity of the State. And it affords me great pleasure to congratulate the immediate representatives of the people, on their being assembled here at this time, and delegated for the same common object. With our cordial co-operation, much good may be done, without which, little benefit can result from our labors.

Before I perform my constitutional duty, in recommending such measures as may be deemed expedient, permit me to observe, that the condition of the people is prosperous and happy. Blessed with a fertile soil, and a healthy climate, in a region where nature has, with an unsparing hand, poured out her choicest blessings, our State is destined, at no distant day, to become one of the first in the confederacy. While we possess such exuberance of soil and mineral riches, we can also justly claim a superiority over most of the States, in our commercial facilities, by means of our navigable lakes and rivers. In the north-east through Lake Michigan, an outlet is offered to the Northern markets. The Wabash River on the east, and the Ohio on the south, both forming common boundaries between us and the adjacent States, present the means of intercommunication with the North and South, while the Mississippi, washing for nearly seven hundred miles our western border, furnishes to the inhabitants, throughout the whole extent, great commercial advantages. Connected with these, our State is penetrated in almost every direction, with other large and navigable rivers.

Such is the advantageous situation of this State, that for several years past a strong tide of immigration has flowed in upon us, bringing with it a hardy and enterprising population. No new State ever increased in its population faster than this has done. When admitted into the Union, about twelve years since, we had but little more than forty thousand inhabitants; now we can number more than one hundred and sixty thousand. By this vast increase of population, the State has been greatly improved in every particular. Its wilderness has been subdued, and thriving villages and cultivated farms are now scattered over almost its whole extent. The people are blessed with all the


benefits of a well-regulated society, and while those of other countries are suffering for some of the necessaries of life we enjoy them in great abundance. How greatful ought we not to be to a kind Providence for such blessings? And how earnestly should we, by wholesome and salutary laws, endeavor still to improve our condition!

With this general and brief view of our situation, I will now recommend to your consideration such measures as may require the action of your legislative body. In the whole circle of your legislation, there is no subject that has a greater claim upon your attention, or calls louder for your aid, than that of education. Whether viewed in relation to our free institutions of government, or in relation to the individual happiness of the people, no subject can more seriously engage your deliberations. Upon the mere mention of the subject, you will recognize all the advantages arising from it, and therefore will adopt, such a system as our means, and the condition of the country, will justify.

Congress has given us the means, by a wise course of legislation in regard to them, to establish some system that will be highly beneficial. Besides the three-per-cent school-fund, now amounting to a considerable sum, we have the sixteenth section in every township of the public land, within the State, and two entire townships, for the purposes of education. Some of these lands, at this time, are unproductive, and from which no immediate revenue can be realized. A proper appeal to the justice of Congress would, no doubt, eventuate in obtaining other lands in lieu of them. Therefore, I would suggest to your consideration the propriety of a memorial to Congress on the subject. It is clearly my opinion, that some of the avails of this fund ought to be used at the present time. The present inhabitants of the State have a better right to its benefits than those who may succeed us. They have suffered all the privations, dangers, and hardships, attendant upon the settlement of a new country, and are entitled, in common justice, to the favor of that country. Although the future race of people, and their interest, ought not to be overlooked in legislating on this subject, yet we ought more to regard the youth now growing up in our country, and to extend to them such aid and encouragement in the fundamental principles of education, as our means will justify. It is to them that the future fortunes of the State will be committed They will direct its movements, control its politics, and guide its destinies. Therefore, it is all-important that they should be instructed, and that their intellectual growth should keep pace with their physical.

The internal improvement of the country demands, and will receive, your particular attention. There cannot be an appropriation of money, within the exercise of your legislative


powers, that will be more richly paid to the citizens than that for the improvement of the country. An enlarged and enlightened, policy, in regard to it, will advance, in the greatest degree, the honor, the prosperity, and the happiness of the country. There is no State, where nature more earnestly invites, than she does in this, the art of man to complete her work, or which promises when completed, more benefits to mankind. I am satisfied that Congress possesses the constitutional power to devise and carry into operation, a system of national improvements with the funds of the General Government. The appropriation of money for these objects has become the settled policy of the Government, and I am in favor of its continuance. We have seen nothing but benefits result from it, and we cannot anticipate evils. It has been sustained by public opinion, and has gained on the affections of the people. It would be folly for us, who have so much to gain by the system, to throw obstacles in its way, but rather continue to give it, as we have heretofore done, our undivided support. There is a manifest difference between works of national and of local or State concern. One class of improvements falls within the action of the national, and the other within that of the State Government.

The contemplated canal between the Illinois River and Lake Michigan, if we regard the mere location of it, being entirely within this State, is local, but if we regard the benefits resulting from it to the whole nation, and as a connecting link to the great chain of inland-water communication between New-Orleans and some of the Atlantic States, it is truly national. The extent of inland navigation, which will be opened when this canal is completed, will not be equalled in any country, and its benefits will be very generally and extensively felt. The political effect of all such works is also very apparent. They will bring, and bind more closely together, the various parts of the extended confederacy. The report of the canal commissioners will be laid before you, by which you will learn all the important facts connected with that great, and to us and the adjoining States, beneficial work. It is evident to my mind, that we have not the means within ourselves for its immediate completion. Nor is there any prospect for the speedy sale of the lands, granted by Congress, sufficient to prosecute the work. Some plan for raising a fund should be adopted, and if the legislature should be opposed to loaning money on a moderate interest, I would recommend an application to Congress to grant scrip, receivable at the land-offices in this State in exchange for the lands heretofore granted and remaining unsold. This subject being presented to Congress in its proper light, there is no doubt the application will be successful.

As the adjoining States of Indiana and Missouri have great


interest in the speedy completion of this canal, I would recommend you to invite, respectfully, their attention to it, and ask their co-operation in a memorial to Congress on the subject.

As connected with this subject, the improvement of the harbor at Chicago is of the first importance. The power to regulate commerce is exclusively vested in Congress. And it is all important to the success of that great interest that commodious harbors should be provided. This subject should be urged on the attention of Congress, and all reasonable means made use of to effect so desirable an object.

The improvement of the navigation of the rivers adjoining, and within this State, will be the subject of your serious consideration. Those improvements which are local to our State will receive your fostering care, so far as our means will justify without embarrassment to the people. And those that fall properly within the sphere of the operation of the General Government, will be presented to Congress for its consideration.

The general good of the present and future population seems to require the permanent establishment of three public roads in this State, extending from its southern to its northern limits. One to commence on the Ohio River, near its junction with the Mississippi, and extending north, on the western side of the State, by the principal towns on the most direct route to Galena. Another to commence at Shawneetown, passing north through the centre of the State, to accommodate the present and future population, to the Lead Mines. And one other, to commence on the Wabash River, near its confluence with the Ohio, passing through the principal towns on the eastern side of the State, by Danville to Chicago, and thence to the Lead Mines. I would recommend that the roads be located by the authority of the State, and the counties through which they pass be required to keep them in repair, as other roads. And for the purpose of raising a fund to construct them, I would advise a petition to Congress to grant to this State, as a donation, each alternate unappropriated section of land over which they pass. This would enhance the value of the adjoining land, and be serviceable to all concerned.

I am aware that some of these roads may, probably, pass in the northern part of the State, over a section of country to which the Indian claim has not been extinguished. This Indian claim ought not, in my opinion, to prevent the State from exercising her sovereignty over it. These Indians, from their dependent and helpless condition, claim our commiseration and sympathy, but they cannot claim to exercise a sovereign independence, as a nation, within our limits, contrary to the rights of our State Government.

There are many other roads in the State that equally deserve your attention. The road from Vincennes, through this State,


to St. Louis, is much travelled, and will receive your legislative care; so I might say of many others, which you will take into consideration.

Throughout the State, there is discovered a general sentiment in favor of a penitentiary system. The opinion is received as correct, that solitary confinement to hard labor has gone farther to reform convicts, and make them useful members of society, than any other system yet devised by the experience and wisdom of man. It will be for you to adopt such an one as you may consider suitable to the country. The commissioners appointed by the legislature have selected a very eligible site at Alton, in Madison County, and have obtained a donation from the proprietor of ten acres of land for the erection of the necessary buildings. They have, likewise, contracted for the building of twenty-four cells, which will be completed during the course of next season. Their report will be laid before you, from which you will learn all the necessary facts in relation to it. I would advise the completion of this work with all convenient speed. Should there be a deficiency in means already provided, I would recommend a loan of money on a reasonable interest to enable the State to complete the work. It would be a saving to the State, in relieving the counties of an onerous burden.

The improvement of the Salines in this State is a subject of no small concern to the people. Nature has been lavish in her bounties in this particular, and has placed it in our power to manufacture salt — an article of the first necessity to man — more than sufficient for our consumption. The manufacture of salt within ourselves should be encouraged by every reasonable legislative aid. All articles which are necessary for our use, and which we can raise, or manufacture within ourselves, should be protected from foreign competition by adequate duties. A system of protecting duties, on these articles, ought never to be abandoned. For, laying out of view the advantages of a home market, created thereby for our productions, it will render us in fact, what we are by right, an independent nation.

In relation to our Salines, I would recommend you to adhere to the policy heretofore adopted, which is, to consider them not a branch of our revenue at this time, but to improve them by an expenditure of the proceeds, now derivable from them, so as to cause them to produce the greatest quantity of salt, and at the lowest possible price to the consumer. By this policy, money that would otherwise be sent out of the State for salt, would be kept at home and circulated among us. And that article can, also, by manufacturing it in the State, be obtained in exchange for the productions of the soil.

The subject of the public land has, of late, been much discussed among the people, and has excited the deepest interest.


It is natural that it should be so, and that it should almost absorb every other. Whether we consider it in reference to our sovereignty and independence as a State Government, or in reference to the speedy settlement of the country, the subject is full of interest. Though I am satisfied that this State, in right of its sovereignty and independence, is the rightful owner of the soil within its limits, still I would not feel disposed to disturb the harmony that should exist among the several States in asserting that right. I am decidedly in favor, however, of having the attention of the nation awakened on this subject, for I am well satisfied that the more it is discussed the more clear will our right appear. Not yielding this right, and failing to have it recognized, I would then be in favor of a surrender to the State, on equitable terms, of these lands, and of addressing a memorial to Congress on the subject. Failing in this, I would then urge upon Congress the propriety and expediency of reducing the price, and of making donations of land to actual settlers.

Thus are represented to your consideration the several modes most likely to succeed in obtaining the desirable object — to settle and improve the country — and to extend the sovereignty of the State throughout its limits. I consider it our duty never to rest satisfied until we have obtained these desirable objects that seem to be so just and equitable.

It seems to me, the citizens who served in the late war, in the defence of this frontier, whether enrolled in the service of the United States, or doing duty as volunteer militia-men, have a strong claim on the generosity of Congress for some remuneration in land for their suffering and service. The country was then but thinly populated, and almost surrounded by the enemy, and their whole time was devoted to its protection. No time was allowed to attend to their private concerns, and many of them now need the care of the Government.

Without a well-organized judiciary system, all the laws than may be enacted will fail of their desired effect. Justice ought to be administered freely and without delay to every man, and, if possible, brought home to his own door. Under a proper administration of the laws, peace, order, and harmony will prevail and every citizen be protected in his rights. This is the case, so far as our system is complete.

The last legislature established one circuit, which may be considered the foundation of the circuit-court system. In proportion as the population of the State increases, so ought this system to be augmented; and from my personal knowledge of the wants of the people and of the country, I am satisfied that it is necessary to increase them at the present session. The duties of the judges of the supreme court are now very laborious, and they will become more so as the population of


the State increases, and new counties are erected. Yet, upon this subject, as on all others whereon expenditure of money is to be made, a strict regard to economy ought to be observed, but in all cases where there is a necessity for an office, allow the officer a liberal and competent salary. I do particularly advise the propriety of establishing two instead of one term of the supreme court annually. A delay of justice for one whole year is almost equal to a denial of it.

The subject of our State Bank as connected with our revenue will necessarily occupy much of your time. The true policy is, in my opinion, to close the business of the bank so soon as a proper regard to the interest of the State will permit. This, too, ought to be done with as little oppression to the bank debtors as possible. Within a short time, all the paper of the bank will become payable. And although the bank policy was most ruinous to the State, and many of its citizens, and only benefited a few speculators, yet the State is in honor and honesty bound for its payment at the appointed time. The credit and character of the State are involved in the prompt payment of this claim, and I do most sincerely recommend you to sustain that character, which, no doubt, you will take a pleasure in doing, by providing adequate means. The warrants of the State ought not to be permitted to fall below par.

The propriety of reducing the ratio of taxation, which is now so excessively high, is submitted to your consideration. The policy of prolonging the payment of our State debt, and thereby lowering the taxes, is a subject fit for your consideration.

I cannot close this address, consistently with my feelings, without expressing to you, and through you to the people, my warm and sincere feelings of gratitude for their honorable confidence, which was lately bestowed upon me. This confidence shall not be abused. The office of Governor of the State was established for the good of the people, and not for the individual who may fill it. Therefore, I shall consider myself filling that office for the general welfare of the whole State. My official care and patronage shall not be exclusively bestowed upon a few men, and on a particular section of the State, and proscribe the balance. Proscription, "for opinion's sake," is, in my opinion, the worst enemy to a republic. It is the birthright of every freeman to express his political sentiments frankly and freely at the polls of an election, or elsewhere, without the hope of reward or the fear of punishment. Therefore, all those who honestly and honorably supported my respectable opponent, in the late election for governor, shall experience from me no inconvenience on that account. I will say, in the language of the patriot Jackson, that "the right of opinion shall suffer no invasion from me." And I confidently


hope that the good people of Illinois will unite and harmonize together in a spirit of peace and good-will to one another, to promote the welfare of our common country, and to banish forever that monster, party-spirit, which does not spare the reputation of the living or the dead.

This State is a constituent part of the national republic, and it is our duty, as well as it is our interest, to unite and support that republic, and its present administration, in all its republican measures, according to the principles of the Constitution. And for the general prosperity of the country, I supported President Jackson for the distinguished station which he now occupies, and having the fullest confidence in his talents and integrity to administer the government on republican principles, I hope that he will consent to serve another presidential term.

The union of the people of the several States forming the National Government, is the palladium of our political safety, and Should be preserved at all hazards. Every attempt toward its dismemberment will be resisted by every good man.

With the united exertions of the people for the good of the public, and with the blessings of Heaven, which I sincerely implore, we may confidently hope to be a great and happy people.
December 8th, 1830.

Chapter LXX.

Continuation of the State Administration by the Author. — Mixture of Party. — Election of Treasurer. — Prosecuting Attorneys. — Signs of the Black-Hawk War. — Counties formed. — Northern Boundary of the State. — The Canal.

THE office of governor of a State, except it is held by extraordinary men, such as Jefferson and Patrick Henry, and a very few others, is a high-sounding and pompous position, without the power to do much good.

I immediately discovered I could effect nothing in the legislature, in the office of governor, as I did as a member of the general assembly. I stated often to my friends, that in ordinary administration of the State government, a governor held the position of a chairman of a town meeting. The chairman kept order, put the questions, and declared the vote of the meeting, but he could not act in the assembly. The same with the governor of a State — he must see there is order preserved, the laws executed, recommend to the legislature, sign the laws and commissions and keep a clear skirt on, but act none and vote none. But in times of war, and similar cases, then he is called upon to act, and often incurs great responsibility.


The first session of the general assembly was excited and furious, as the members were elected in the heat of party excitement, and not enough of time had intervened for party-rancor to subside. It was a kind of triangular party that actuated the members of this legislature. The parties of Whig and Democrat existed to some considerable extent; but the immediate party, which arose between Gov. Kinney and myself, was the most bitter, and raged to the greatest extent. The moderate Jackson-men, and the ultra-Jackson party, were, many of them, exceedingly unfriendly to each other. Under these circumstances, it required much circumspection and prudence for the Governor to conciliate the general assembly. A majority on a joint ballot of the legislature was friendly to me, but I was in the majority in the Senate. This made it unpleasant and injurious to the public interest, for the Executive and the Senate to disagree when they were compelled to act together on executive business. The Governor at that day had considerable patronage.

In many cases, the Senate and myself, as governor, did not agree. One instance was the secretary of State, A. P. Field, Esq. The Senate wished me to remove or renominate him to the Senate, so they might reject him. Resolutions passed the Senate to this effect. I considered the secretary was a kind of executive officer, and I would not be bullied out of my notions of propriety. I would neither remove him nor renominate him. He remained in office during my administration. I disregarded their resolutions. I had the people with me, and I feared nothing. Another notable case was that of the prose cuting attorneys. At that time, three, and I think four, prosecuting attorneys — Henry Eddy, Sidney Breese, Thomas Ford, and Alfred Cowles — were in office, and had performed their duties well, to my own knowledge, under the administration of Governor Edwards. I nominated them to the Senate, and they were all rejected except Thomas Ford. I knew there could be no fault found to these officers, except they had been opposed to the election of Governor Kinney. I nominated them again, and they were the second time rejected by the Senate. I nominated none others, and after the close of the legislature I appointed the gentlemen above mentioned to their former offices. We all were in an excited state then, and there is some doubt if I had the power to make the appointments, under the Constitution. But our party, with the people, was sustained, and the next legislature approved of all my official actions.

During this session of the general assembly, the election of the State treasurer presented a singular position of these double parties. James Hall was the incumbent in the office, and was again an applicant for the position. He was a Whig, opposed to the administration of General Jackson. John Dement, a


member of the legislature, was a candidate also for the office, and was a Jackson man. Judge Hall had been strong and zealous for the election of Governor Kinney, and wielded much influence in his paper, the Illinois Intelligencer, at the seat of government. Colonel Dement had been an active and efficient friend of mine in the canvass for governor. It was strange to witness the canvass for this office. Ultra Whigs and Democrats often met in council together, before the election. Judge Hall although a Whig, was mostly supported by Democrats, but Colonel Dement was elected.

The zeal and party feelings engendered in the gubernatorial election governed, to a great extent, this election, as both candidates were competent and worthy men. Our party being mostly composed of the original Jackson men, was firm, efficient, but not proscriptive. We gave the administration of Jackson a decided and efficient support. The other segment of the Democratic party had been mostly for Crawford for President, and were ultra and proscriptive. At that time, proscription, for "opinion's sake," was not popular, and the course we pursued was approved by the people. Proscription became more popular afterward in this State.

I had received memorials and messages from the section of country around Rock Island, informing me that a part of the Sac Indians, with Black Hawk at their head, were hostile to the citizens, and would not leave the lands they had sold to the General Government. These lands were occupied by citizens who had bought them of the Government. I brought the subject before the legislature in 1830. The House of Representatives reported strong resolutions condemning the acts of the Indians, and calling on the United States to remove them. This language is used in the preamble, "whereas, it has been satisfactorily made known to this general assembly, that certain bands of Indians, commanded by the well-known chief, Black Hawk, have been in the habit of hunting upon ceded lands, within the limits of this State, committing trespasses upon the lands of individuals by making sugar, and destroying their sugar trees, killing their hogs, stealing their horses, and otherwise so demeaning themselves as to keep up a constant state of alarm among the settlers of the northern part of our State, and calculated to prevent others from settling upon lands which they have honestly paid for."

These resolutions passed, and are the first official action of the State Government in the case of the Black-Hawk war, in my administration; but Governor Edwards, in the previous legislature, had presented the subject in petitions from the people settled around the Sac village of Indians. The narration of the Black-Hawk war will commence in the next chapter.

The country was still improving rapidly, and the general


assembly of 1830 and 1831 established the counties of Jasper, Rock Island, Cook, McLean, La Salle, Putnam, and Coles. The whole northern section of the State was filling up, but the Black-Hawk war arrested it, for two years, considerably.

An act of this general assembly authorized me, as Governor, to appoint a commissioner to run and mark the State line on latitude forty-two degrees and thirty minutes north. I appointed Messrs. Braily and Messenger to run the line, but at last John Messenger, of St. Clair County, performed the service. I knew he was a talented and scientific mathematician, who was capable of doing the subject justice, and I believe the line run by him and the Hon. Lucius Lyon, of Michigan, has given general satisfaction to both States, Illinois and Wisconsin.

An act was passed by this general assembly to fund the old State-Bank paper if it could not be redeemed in cash. Stock was issued bearing an interest of six per cent per annum. This act, and others, put the currency of the State at par, which advanced the country very much.

Under the United States census of 1830, the State was laid off into three districts for representatives to Congress, and an election for the members was ordered to be held on the first Monday of August, 1831. And, also, a general election in August, 1832, should be held for three members of Congress, and every two years thereafter. This last law provided that the members of Congress should be elected one year or more before the session of Congress for which they were elected. An act was also passed by this general assembly authorizing the Governor to appoint a board of canal commissioners. I appointed Jonathan H. Pugh, Bowling Green, and Charles Dunn, commissioners.

Chapter LXXI.

The Black-Hawk War. — Sketch of the Life of the Indian Warrior, Black Hawk. — He Attacks Fort Madison in 1811. — Joins the British, in Canada, Against the Americans, in 1812, in the late War with Britain. — He is in many Battles against the Americans, on the Mississippi, in the same War.

THE Black-Hawk war having occurred in MY OWN TIMES, it will be appropriate for me to record it. And I may say, in an humble manner, as Aeneas said in narrating the sacking of Troy to Queen Dido, "a great part of which I was." From my opportunities of knowing, I presume the following brief history of that war will be found to be accurate and correct. As the celebrated warrior, Black Hawk, figured so conspicuously in this war, it is proper to give a sketch of his life.


Macuta Makicatah is the Indian name for Black Hawk. This warrior was born in the Sac Village in the year 1767, and was an Indian of some considerable talents and shrewdness. I have met him in council and have heard him speak, and I have a slight personal knowledge of his character besides what his actions would afford me. When I first saw him in council, at Rock Island, in 1831, he appeared "stricken in years" — being then 64 years old — and he deported himself in that demure grave, and formal manner incident to almost all Indians. He seemed to possess a mind of more than ordinary strength, but slow and plodding in its operations. He appeared to me to possess not such genius or talents that would enable him to take the lead in a great emergency, and conduct a great enterprise to a successful conclusion. He might have had the talents to conduct a small marauding party with success, but he possessed not such intellect as could combine together great discordant elements into harmonious operation. His mind sunk low in comparison with the great Indian characters, such as Pontiac, Brant, Tecumseh, and such illustrious men. His own townsman and rival, Keokuk, possessed, in my judgment, more intellect than his rival, Black Hawk. Keokuk was gifted with an extraordinary strength of mind. Black Hawk, in 1831, seemed to be laboring under a weighty melancholy and depression of spirits. The army of mounted volunteers, twelve or fifteen hundred strong, panting for Indian blood, right or wrong, had, a day or two before, driven him and his band off from the east side of the river, which circumstance had, I thought, given him sad and melancholy impressions at the time. The person of Black Hawk was large and well developed. His forehead was rather large, and presented such a formation as indicates a class of Indian intellect above ordinary strength. At the time I saw him he seemed more inclined to council than to action. He gave in his biography a tradition, that his great grandfather resided in Montreal, and that the nation emigrated West to Rock Island. From this point they forced away the Kaskaskia Indians, and occupied it themselves.

Black Hawk was a warrior — taking it from his own statements — from the age of fifteen, and fought the savages, who were the hereditary enemies of his nation. The number of the enemy he says he has killed staggers belief, but no doubt he was, in his youth, an active and efficient warrior. His passion and ambition were to distinguish himself as a great warrior. It appears he was merciful to the weak, the women, and children.

It is due to the Indian character to state, that the only main road for an Indian to distinguish himself and become a great man is in war. So soon as he kills or wounds an enemy, he may paint on his blanket a bloody hand, which will entitle him to a seat in the councils. This standard of character and honor


makes it the duty, rather than a crime, of an Indian to appear foremost in the ranks of the war-parties, so that he may be carrier, and not such a bad character as he is sometimes esteemed by the whites.

In 1810 and 1811, Black Hawk and comrades were "nursing their wrath to keep it warm," against the whites. A party of Sacs by invitation, went to see the prophet, at Tippecanoe; they returned poisoned against the Americans. A party of Winnebagos had taken some white scalps, which excited for murder the Sac band, headed by Black Hawk. A part of his band, and some Winnebagos, attacked Fort Madison in 1811 — after the Tippecanoe battle — but after a hard day's fighting they were repulsed. Black Hawk headed the Sacs in this attack.

In 1812, the British emissaries arrived at Rock Island with goods, and bad counsel, which induced Black Hawk and five hundred warriors to go with Colonel Dixon to Canada. When they reached Green Bay, they found numbers of Kickapoos, Winnebagos, Ottawas, and Pottawatomies camped there, all in fine spirits, and under the command of Colonel Dixon. Black Hawk and Big Crow were at the battles of River Rasin, the Lower Sandusky, and other places, but soon found that there was hard fighting on this frontier and small spoils. He and twenty comrades left for the Sac Village at Rock Island.

Black Hawk had the fire of war and hatred of the whites impressed strongly in his heart, and remained idle at his village only a short time. He raised a war-party of about thirty warriors, and proceeded to the Quivre-River Settlement, in Missouri. Here he had a hard battle with some United States rangers. The rangers ran him and eighteen other warriors into a sink-hole, and around this den in the earth was some fighting and much manoeuvring. The Indians in the earth supposed they would be destroyed, and some of them commenced to sing their death-song. They burrowed deep in the earth, and only one Indian was killed in the sink-hole. The whites made a moving battery on wagon-wheels, and fired into the hole, but killed but the one Indian. One of the rangers on this battery, at the brink of the hole, permitted his head to extend too far out, and was killed by the Indians. This smoky and singular battle continued until dark, when the Indians on the outside called to those in the den, so that the rangers supposed they would be outnumbered, and they left the Indians in the ground, and also those on the ground. Black Hawk says that they put the dead Indian on top of the white man and left in triumph.

For many years before the Black-Hawk war commenced, Keokuk and Black Hawk were hostile rivals. One party was for peace and the Americans, while the other, Black Hawk's, were unfriendly to the United States and on the best of terms


with the British Government. This is the reason the tribe under Black Hawk was called "the British Band." Black Hawk would not receive any annuities from the United States, but went to Canada every year for presents from his British father. He had assembled around him a restless and turbulent class of Indians, and those who disliked the United States. They were about the same class of Indians that the prophet had with him at Tippecanoe, in 1811, when General Harrison fought the battle there.

Black Hawk and his band stood exceedingly hostile to the United States and to Keokuk, the chief of the Sac and Fox Indians, and friendly to the British, just before the commencement of the war, in 1831.

Chapter LXXII.

The Black-Hawk War Continued. — The Cause of the War. — The Hostility of the British Band of Sac and Fox Indians to the Whites. — Petitions and Affidavits Proving the Facts. — Compelled to Call Out Troops to Defend the Citizens. — Regret the Necessity.

THE cause of the Indian war was the determination of Black Hawk and his band to remain in their ancient village, situated on Rock River, a few miles from its mouth, after the Government of the United States had, by various treaties, purchased the village, and the whole country, from the Sac and Fox tribes of Indians. The Government had also the public lands surveyed, and in 1828, some of the lands, in and around this ancient Indian village, were sold, and the purchasers residing on it. The collision between the two races, for the same territory and property, produced the first disturbance between the Indians and the Government.

In 1824, General Harrison, in St. Louis, made a treaty with the Sac and Fox nations, by which the lands, including the old Sac Village, and a great tract of country, was purchased, and ever since the purchase, the tribes received their annual salaries for the land. After the war of 1812, in the year 1815, the Sac and Fox Nation confirmed the first treaty, which was made in 1804, at St. Louis. At the treaty of 1815, Black Hawk and his band were not present, but the next year, in 1816, he, with his tribe, agreed to the treaty, and he himself said, "I touched the goose quill," in confirming the treaty.

The warriors of the Nation knew all about these treaties, and when the Government surveyed and sold the lands, including the old Sac Village, Keokuk, the main chief of the Nation, and most of the Indians, abandoned the east side of the Mississippi and located themselves on the west side.


Black Hawk used such arguments as these to deceive and entrap his Indian followers: that land cannot be sold; that the treaties were void, as they were fraudulent; and that the Nation was not consulted when the treaty was made in 1804; when in fact these treaties were made as equitable, and by as honorable commissioners as any treaties were ever made in the United States. President Jefferson and the Senate of his day confirmed the treaty of 1804, made in St. Louis by an honest and upright man, General Harrison.

I have been this much in detail, to show the utter fallacy of the positions taken by Black Hawk and by many of his white hypocritical sympathizers. It was the want of sound judgment, in Black Hawk, and his malignant hostility to the whites, together with promises of support from the Indians residing on the frontiers of the country, that caused him to attempt to remain in his village, in defiance of the power of the General Government. Every argument and entreaty was resorted to by all of his ancient and trusty friends. Even the British authorities of Canada, whom he consulted, advised him to leave his village, if he had sold it. The Government of the United States waited on him for a long time, thinking he would come to his senses and abandon his village. In fact, the good feeling and kindness of the Government were misconstrued by him into a belief that the United States either would not or could not move him from the east to the west side of the river. Not a single good and intelligent man in the State desired a collision with an insignificant and infatuated band of Indians, but at the same time, the peaceable citizens, residing on their own lands, must be protected from the assults of a contemptible and ignorant foe, as well as from an enemy of a different character.

I was well apprised, long before, of the difficulties and collisions existing between the Indians at the Sac Village and the inhabitants, but in the early spring of 1831, petitions and messages almost daily reached me, as Governor, at my residence in Belleville.

The first petition that I received was dated April 30, 1831, stating, among many other things, that "last fall the Black-Hawk band of Indians almost destroyed all of our crops, and made several attempts at the owners' lives, when they attempted to prevent their depredations, and actually wounded one man by stabbing him in several places. This spring, they act in a much more outrageous and menacing manner." The petition further states that there are six or seven hundred Indians among them, and they report more are coming. The Indians stated that the Winnebagos and Pottawatomies are to join them, if necessary. This petition was signed by thirty-five or forty persons.

On the 18th May of the same year, another petition was sent


to me, stating substantially the same outrages committed by the Indians as above mentioned, and that if relief did not soon arrive, that the inhabitants would be compelled to abandon their crops and homes. The petitioners state in this second petition that "the Indians pasture their horses in our wheatfields, shoot our cows and cattle, and threaten to burn our houses over our heads if we do not leave."

Several depositions, sworn to, were presented to me. B. F. Pike states, on oath, that "the number of warriors is about three hundred; that the Indians have, in various instances, done much damage to the said white inhabitants, by throwing down their fences, destroying their fall grain, pulling off the roofs of houses, and positively asserting if they did not go away the warriors would kill them.

This information placed me in great responsibility. If I did not act, and the inhabitants were murdered, after being informed of their situation, I would be condemned "from Dan to Bersheba;" and if I levied war, by raising troops, when there was no necessity for it, I would also be responsible. I had been just elected governor, and my friends had pledged myself, and themselves, that I would act rightly and honorably in all my official duties. This made me feel, if possible, more responsibility to friends than to myself. I passed a few weeks of intense feeling in relation to my duty.

Having before me a vast amount of information, all tending to establish the following facts: that about three hundred warriors, headed by a hostile war-chief, Black Hawk, were in possession with the citizens of the old Sac Village, near Rock Island; that the Indians were determined to retain possession of the country by force; and that they had already done mischief to the citizens. I knew, also, that the citizens had applied to the Indian agents, and the military officers of the United States, and had obtained no relief. I was well aware that, in this kind of a war, there was but one step between the sublime and the ridiculous, and that I was incurring a great responsibility. On mature reflection, I considered it my duty to call on the volunteers to move the Indians to the west side of the Mississippi, according to the treaty made by the General Government with them. Accordingly, on the 26th of May, 1831, without any requisition from the United States, I made a call on the militia for seven hundred mounted men.


Chapter LXXIII.

War. — Call on the Militia on the 26th of May. — They meet at Beardstown on the 10th of June. — Letters to General Gaines and Governor Clark. — Their Answers. — The Speedy Appearance of a Large Army Deters the Surrounding Indians.

IT is astonishing, the war-spirit the western people possess. As soon as I decided to march against the Indians at Rock Island, the whole country, throughout the north-west of the State, resounded with the war clamor. Everything was in a bustle and uproar. It was then eighteen or twenty years since the war with Great Britain, and these same Indians, and the old citizens inflamed the young men to appear in the tented field against the old enemy.

I knew that it was absolutely necessary to appear at the scene of action with all possible speed, and therefore I appointed a rendezvous of the troops at Beardstown, on the Illinois River, on the 10th of June. This gave the troops only a few days to volunteer, prepare for the service, and march from this county — St. Clair — to Beardstown, a distance of one hundred and fifty miles, or more. In this time my orders had to be distributed to the various counties nearest the scene of action. The militia to meet, organize, and march to Beardstown, in fourteen or fifteen days. This required the greatest exertion, but I was well acquainted with the people, and knew, I thought, the manner in which to approach them. If I made the call on the volunteers, and none turned out, I was a disgraced Governor.

In order to effect the speedy assemblage of the troops, I called on none south of St. Clair, or east of Sangamon Counties, taking those nearest the place of rendezvous. I had printed extracts from the petitions sent me, and the depositions, circulated throughout the country — showing the situation of affairs at the Sac Village. Moreover, I made private and public speeches to the masses, showing the necessity for the call on the troops, and urging the people and my friends to turn out for the defence of the frontiers.

The warm feelings of the late election for governor had not yet died away, and my electioneering friends converted their electioneering fever into the military, which was a powerful lever in the crusade for Rock Island.

When a call is made on the militia the number that will volunteer cannot be exactly ascertained before they meet at the place of rendezvous. In this call on the militia, more than double the number that was called for — seven hundred — volunteered. It was the most busy time in the year with the farmers,


yet hundreds of them unhitched their horses from the plow, left their cornfields, and appeared in the army.

Another great responsibility forced itself on me — which was to procure military stores and provisions for that army, the numbers of which could not be ascertained at the commencement. This expedition, thus far, was on my own responsibility, and, perhaps, the General Government would not approve of it.

I engaged two influential and efficient characters, Colonels Enoch C. Much and Samuel C. Christy, and appointed them quartermasters, with whom I consulted, and devised the plans on which to procure supplies. These gentlemen were large traders and merchants, which gave them a standing to effect the object desired.

In all armies, the supplies are among the most difficult matters to be arranged. So it was in this military expedition, but it was accomplished.

On the 27th of May, 1831 — the same day I made the call on the militia — I addressed a letter to General dark, of St. Louis, superintendent of Indian affairs, and stated, "that I had called out seven hundred militia to protect the citizens near Rock Island from Indian depredations; but I considered it due to the General Government to state that in about fifteen days a sufficient force will appear before the hostile Indians to remove them, dead or alive, to the west side of the Mississippi; but to save this disagreeable business, perhaps a request from you to them, for them to remove to the west side of the river, would effect the object of procuring peace to the citizens of this State." I deemed it probable that if General Clark, who had great standing with the Indians, would inform Black Hawk and his band of their situation, troops being raised to march against them, that they would cross the river and leave the citizens in peace, but on the 28th inst., General Clark wrote me, and stated that "he had made every effort on his part to move from Illinois all the tribes who had ceeded their lands." He further adds: "I have given the contents of your letter to General Gaines, who has power to protect, the frontiers."

On the 28th of the same month, I addressed a letter to General Gaines, and stated: "I had received undoubted information that the section of the State near Rock Island was actually invaded by a hostile band of Indians, headed by Black Hawk, and in order to repel said invasion, and to protect the citizens of the State, I have, under the provisions of the Constitution of the United States, and the laws of this State, called on the militia, to the number of seven hundred men, who will be mounted and ready for service in a very short time. I consider it my duty to lay before you the above information, that you may adopt such measures as you may deem just and proper." I stated further that I would move against said tribes of Indians


and "as Executive of the State, respectfully request your co-operation in this business."

General Gaines was then at Jefferson Barracks, below St. Louis, and on the 29th inst., answered my letter by saying: "I do not deem it necessary, or proper, to require militia, or any other description of force, other than the regular army, at this place and Prairie du Chien, to protect the frontiers."

Both General Gaines and General Clark disapproved of my raising troops to move the hostile Indians over the river. They had not the information of the necessity of my movement which I possessed. I urged on the levying of the troops; but I received, not far from Beardstown, a letter from General Gaines, dated at Rock Island, on the 5th of June, that showed the necessity of my speedy movement to protect the frontiers. The letter stated that "I deem it the only safe measure now to be taken, to request of your Excellency the battalion of mounted men which you did me the honor to say would co-operate with me." He states in the same letter that Black Hawk had invited the other neighboring Indians to unite with him, if a war should ensue, and if that should be the case, more troops would be required.

I was very much rejoiced on receiving this letter, as it put my whole proceeding on a legal and constutional footing, and the responsibility of the war removed from me to the United States.

I believe it was the expeditious and efficient movement of the mounted volunteers that quieted the Indian disturbances near Rock Island. Black Hawk and his band were not in fear of the regular soldiers. The regular army could not move with celerity so as to strike terror into the hearts of the Indians. Moreover, the Indians dreaded the backwoods white men. They knew the volunteers were their natural enemies and would destroy them on all occasions.

This class of troops raised and marched to Rock Island with extraordinary celerity, and in such an imposing force that it struck terror into the hearts of the Indians.

I knew at the time I made the first call on the militia, and time has since confirmed it, that many of the Indians for hundreds of miles around the frontiers were hostile to the United States, and had promised Black Hawk succor, and would have Joined him had not the extraordinarily quick and strong movement of the Illinois volunteers prevented it. It is probable that the determined and hasty volunteering of the Illinois troops saved the Government from a destructive Indian war all around the north-west frontiers.

After the supplies were prepared to meet the volunteers at Beardstown, I visited almost all of the counties where volunteers were required, and placed everything in train, as far as I was able.


As has been already stated, I called on my leading friends, told them the situation of the country, and my situation also. They, and the masses, responded to the call; and more than double the number called for appeared at Beardstown on, or near the 10th of June, 1831.

Chapter LXXIV.

The Organization of the Volunteers North of Beardstown. — Procured Arms and Provisions. — Respectable and Distinguished Citizens Joined the Army.

AS this campaign progressed, I became more enlisted in its success, which made me give it my undivided attention. I had then recently after the election many bitter enemies at home preaching, in an under tone, poison against the whole war, and against myself also. Many would be pleased to see the whole campaign fail, as that of General Hopkins did in 1812, if it would reach me. All things considered, to promote the general welfare, I felt as much interested in the success of the campaign as if it were a private expedition carried on by myself alone,

I had appointed two efficient and energetic officers, Colonels James D. Henry and Milton K. Alexander, my aids-de-camp, who, at my request, attended at Beardstown, and were good aids in fact to me in organizing the army. It must be recollected that the most independent and energetic citizens volunteered, and that they were not at first many of them accustomed to military subordination. It required some attention to the notions and opinions of the volunteers as to their organization. Moreover, many citizens, competent and efficient characters appeared at the rendezvous for office. Many of these individuals had standing, and their wishes were not to be disregarded. On the whole, the proper organization of a volunteer army is a matter that requires much serious attention, and a knowledge of human nature. A volunteer army, without the proper organization, and properly officered, will turn out a mob, and a disgrace to themselves and country.

I appointed the Hon. Joseph Duncan, who was then a member in congress, brigadier-general, to take immediate command of the brigade, and Samuel Whiteside, a major, to take command of a spy-battalion. These officers were important to the success of the campaign, and I took the responsibility to appoint them. The other officers, except the staff-officers, I ordered the volunteers to elect.

At Beardstown, the troops commenced to arrive in great numbers, and they generally appeared by companies. They were drilled and trained under the direction of my aids, with


as much accuracy as if they were regulars, so far as raw troops were capable.

Another difficulty arose among others, that although I had ordered each volunteer to procure a gun, but hundreds appeared at the rendezvous without arms. We could not wait to procure arms from a distance. We expected every day to receive information that the Indians and the citizens had had a battle at the Sac Village.

It was fortunate that some of the State arms received from the United States, had been ordered to Beardstown; but not half enough to supply all. It occurred that a respectable merchant, Mr. Earnst, in Beardstown, had a quantity of muskets in his store, and we procured them for the troops. These muskets were light, neat pieces, made with brass barrels for the South American service, and answered us exceedingly well. It was a mere accident to find them in a dry-goods store. The troops, among the best men in the country, came flocking in until the number was swelled to near threefold seven hundred, the force first called for. It would not do to turn these good men, the supernumerary, back home. They had made arrangements to leave home, and to send them back, their whole arrangements would be frustrated. They urged that they appeared at my call, and they did not know how it would turn out — that they were with me, and they would stay with me. I took the responsibility and organized almost threefold the number General Gaines called for.

The main consideration that urged me to this policy, was, that when we had plenty of forces at hand, it was folly to appear with a bare sufficiency in the field to conquer the enemy. That it would save the lives of the whites to have a large force in the service — that we did not exactly know how strong the band of Black Hawk was, and that many other Indians might join his standard.

My policy in this humble war, in having a large force in the field, was established to be correct by the contrary course in the Mexican war. At no time during the Mexican war was there a proper force in the field. At least threefold the number of troops to what was in service ought to have been in the field at the battle of Buena Vista, and at all the celebrated battles in Mexico. But the victories were the more brilliant on account of the few American soldiers engaged in them. But suppose the armies had been cut to pieces by having an insufficient force in service, when millions were panting at home for the honor of the tented field. In such an event, the administration would have been disgraced. But as the campaigns turned out, the annals of military history since the slaughter of the innocent people recorded in the Old Testament, down to the present time, cannot furnish as many splendid and brilliant victories as


were achieved by the American army in the conquest of Mexico, under Generals Taylor and Scott.

The whole brigade was organized into two regiments and two battalions. The first regiment was commanded by Col. James D. Henry, Jacob Fry, lieutenant-colonel; John T. Stuart, major; Thomas Collins, adjutant; Edward Jones, quartermaster; and Thomas M. Neal, paymaster. The captains were Adam Smith, William F. Elkin, A. Morris, Thomas Carlin, Samuel Smith, John Lorton, and Samuel C. Pearce. The second regiment was commanded by Colonel Daniel Leib; lieutenant-colonel not recollected; N. Butler, major. The captains were H. Mathews, John Hanes, George Bristow, William Gilham, Kindall, Alexander Wells, William Weatherford. The odd battalion was commanded by Major N. Buckmaster; James Semple, adjutant Richard Roman, surgeon, and Joseph Gillespie, paymaster Captains, William Moore, John Laramie, and Soloman Millei The spy-battalion was commanded by General Samuel White side, as major; Samuel F. Kendall, adjutant; John S. Great house, quartermaster; P. H. Winchester, paymaster. Captains William B. Whiteside, William Miller, and Soloman P. Witt.

In this manner organized and all the necessary supplies furnished, the brigade left the encampment near Rushville, on the 15th of June, for Rock Island. I marched with the brigade with my staff, Colonel E. C. Berry, adjutant-general of the State. Col. M. K. Alexander, my aid-de-camp, and others. In this volunteer army were many of the most distinguished men in the State.

Chapter LXXV.

March to Rock Island. — Black Hawk and Tribe Abandon their Village. — The Volunteers Occupy the Sac Village. — Treaty with Black Hawk and Warriors.

THE brigade organized, and marching in the large prairies toward Rock Island, made a grand display. The material was an energetic and efficient troop, possessing all the qualities, except discipline, that were necessary in any army. This small army was composed of the flower of the country, and possessed strong sense and unbounded energy. They also entertained rather an excess of the Indian ill-will, so that it required much gentle persuasion to restrain them from killing, indiscriminately, all the Indians they met.

The settlements were not extended at that day much north, if any, of Monmouth, in Warren County. In four days of a pleasant and prosperous march, the army encamped on the Mississippi, at about two o'clock, eight miles below the Sac


Village. At this point, General Gaines met the brigade with a steamboat filled with provisions. Here General Gaines received the troops into the service of the United States and took the command.

I had a severe attack of the fever, and was confined to the wagon or the boat. It was considered too late to make a display before the Indian village that evening.

Here again I will state, that small circumstances may decide great events. The following remarks are not mathematical, but ten to one they would have occurred if the army had reached the river in the early part of the day. Then Black Hawk and his band would have been on the disputed territory, and although the Indians might not have fired the first gun, they were well armed and prepared for defence. Americans, and perhaps many, with or without orders, would have fired on the Indians. A battle would have ensued in which most of the Indians — men, women, and children — would have been detroyed, and some fifty or eighty of the whites. How fortunate it was that the army reached the river late in the evening, as no one, with a few exceptions, desired to destroy these deluded savages. It is the nature of an Indian to fight the most severely when he is being destroyed, and to defend his family, he will do as much as any one on earth. The headstrong Americans, being so many in the brigade that bated the Indians, wanted fun, and did not know the power and efficiency of the Indians to kill, when they are hemmed in — that a bloody tragedy would have been enacted if the Indians had been in possession of the village when the army reached it. Providentially this calamity was averted by giving the Indians time to run off the next night. Some believe General Gaines caused the army to encamp on the river on purpose to give time for the Indians to escape in the night, and some suppose that he and General Duncan knew in the morning, before the army left the camp, that the Indians had escaped. I was with Gaines on the boat, and I did not know the Indians had fled until the army reached the village. I sincerely thought there would be blood shed. I believe Gaines was honest, and he arranged the steamer to resist the Indian balls, and urged me to go below, for he said I was in great danger on the deck of the boat. I remained on the deck, but soon the word was that the Indians had escaped in the night. I was glad of it. If Gaines knew of the Indians being gone, he acted unfair to me, and I do not believe he would. I think Gaines possessed strict honor and fidelity. Hordes of Indians were seen lurking about the army, and were, no doubt, spies.

The army was encamped on this beautiful site, and made arrangements for a night-attack, as was the case at Tippecanoe in 1811. The Indians under Black Hawk were about the same


class of fanatical, crazy people as surrounded the prophet on the Wabash. These modern fanatics had also their prophet, that dreamed dreams, and excited the deluded savages to a state approaching insanity. No one could tell what they would do. Not an Indian approached the army offering peace, and the general opinion was that a battle would be fought. The utmost vigilance was observed during the night, and no attack was made. Next morning, the volunteers under General Duncan moved up the river, some several miles, to a position opposite the old Sac Village. General Gaines had a number of cannon and artillerymen posted on a height on the other side of the village, and within the range of the guns. In another quarter was a strong force of the regular army posted, to aid in the conflict if necessary.

Attempts were made by General Duncan to ferry Rock River, but it proved too slow. He was shown a ford above where the army crossed the river.

General Gaines had cannon and regulars on his boat, and moved the boat up Rock River near Woodruff's Island, in the river, where the troops found a ford to cross the river. The cannon was fired on the island, and the shore where it was supposed the Indians would be concealed to oppose the volunteers crossing the river. The cannon was fired, and the army crossed the river. When the village, supposed to be so sacred to the Indians, was approached, not an Indian was found in it. The warriors, women, and children had fled during the night to the west side of the river.

During this whole day it rained in torrents, so that the troops were as wet as if they had been in the river. This ended Black-Hawk's bravado, and his determination to die in his ancient village. It never can be ascertained how many warriors were under his command. They ranged from four to six hundred men, and I presume there were at times as high as five or six hundred. It is a fact, that many of the straggling and disaffected Indians of the surrounding tribes had at times joined him, and I presume were with him at the village when the army reached the Mississippi; but as Butler wrote the Indians acted,

"He that fights and runs away,
May live to fight another day."

Chapter LXXVI.

Volunteers Camped on the Site of the Present Town of Stephenson. — Stampede with the Horses. — Treaty with Black Hawk and Warriors.

I WAS so sick I could not ride on horseback, but remained on the steamer with General Gaines while the volunteers were


crossing the river, and the General firing the cannon. I am satisfied that he supposed, and so did I, that there would be a battle fought at the village. The steamboat was so fortified that the bullets could do the pipes and steam machinery no great injury. Rock River was narrow where the boat was, so that balls could reach the steamboat with ease.

I was truly glad we were not compelled to destroy these deluded savages, although they had been extremely insolent to General Gaines some short time before. Black Hawk entered into a council with General Gaines, at Rock Island, sometime before the army reached the Sac Village, and he and warriors were armed with spears and tomahawks, and invited the General out with his troops for a pitch battle. Notwithstanding all this bravado, it is to the honor of General Gaines that he disregarded this unbecoming conduct, and treated Black Hawk and his band with impartial justice.

Next morning, after the wet night in the Indian wigwams of the Sac Village, the volunteers encamped exactly on the site where the town of Stephenson now stands. The location then was smooth prairie.

In a bend of the Mississippi, the horses of the brigade were confined and a guard placed around them, but a steamboat came up the river at night and alarmed them. They took what is called a stampede, and run altogether in a confused mass away from the river for miles. The guards were compelled to leave their posts or be trodden into the earth. It required some time to gather up the lost horses.

Black Hawk and his band landed on the west side of the Mississippi, about twelve miles below Rock Island, and there camped. General Gaines sent an order to him and warriors that if he and his head men did not come to Rock Island and make a treaty of peace, that he would move on him with the troops under his command. In a few days, some of the chiefs and warriors came over to Rock Island, but Black Hawk did not appear. The general then sent peremptory orders for Black Hawk and warriors to come to Fort Armstrong and sue for peace, or he would chastise them. He had the power, he told them, and he would exercise it if a treaty of peace was not concluded in a short time. The Indians are terrified at mounted Americans.

In a few days, Black Hawk, and the chiefs and, headmen to the number of twenty-eight, appeared in Fort Armstrong, and on the 30th June, 1831, in full council with General Gaines and myself, signed the treaty hereafter set out. Antoine Le Clair, a man of good sense and excellent character, was the interpreter, and explained the whole transaction so that all the warriors, including Black Hawk himself, were well acquainted with the contents of the treaty and the whole transaction.


In Black Hawk's life, he states that "when we arrived at the door, (meaning the door of the council-house,) we were singing a war-song, and armed with lances, spears, war-clubs, and bows and arrows, as if going to battle." He further states that "I told him (General Gaines,) I never would leave my village, and was determined not to leave it."

The following is the treaty made and concluded on that occasion

Articles of Agreement and Capitulation made and concluded this thirtieth day of June, eighteen hundred and thirty-one, between E. P. Gaines, Major-General of the United States Army, on the part of the United States; John Reynolds, Governor of Illinois, on the part of the State of Illinois; and the Chiefs and Braves of the Band of Sac Indians — usually called the British Band, of Rock River — with their old Allies of the Pottawatomie, Winnebago, and Kickapoo Nations

Witnesseth, that whereas, the said British band of Sac Indians have, in violation of the several treaties entered into between the United States and the Sac and Fox Nations, in the years 1804, 1816,and 1825, continued to remain upon and to cultivate the lands on Rock River, ceded to the United States by the said treaties, after the said lands had been sold by the United States to individual citizens of Illinois and other States

And whereas, the said British band of Sac Indians, in order to sustain their pretentions to continue on the said Rock-River lands, have assumed the attitude of actual hostility toward the United States, and have had the audacity to drive citizens of the State of Illinois from their houses, destroy their corn, and invite many of their old friends of the Pottawatomies, Winnebagos, and Kickapoos to unite with them, the said British band of Sacs, in war, to prevent their removal from said lands

And whereas, many of the most disorderly of these several tribes of Indians did actually join the said British band of Sac Indians prepared for war against the United States, and more particularly against the State of Illinois, from which purpose they confess that nothing could have restrained them but the appearance of force far exceeding the combined strength of the said British band of Sac Indians, with such of their aforesaid allies as had actually joined them; but being now convinced that such a war would tend speedily to annihilate them, they have voluntarily abandoned their hostile attitude and sued for peace.

Peace is therefore granted them upon the following conditions, to which the said British band of Sac Indians, with their aforesaid allies, agree; and for the faithful execution of which, the undersigned chiefs and braves of the said band, and their allies, mutually bind themselves, their lives, and assigns, forever


1. The British band of Sac Indians are required peaceably to submit to the authority of the friendly chiefs and braves of the united Sac and Fox Nations, and at all times hereafter to reside and hunt with them upon their own lands, west of the Mississippi River, and to be obedient to their laws and treaties, and no one or more of the said band shall ever be permitted to recross said river to the place of their usual residence, nor to any part of their old hunting-ground east of the Mississippi, without the express permission of the President of the United States, or the Governor of the State of Illinois.

2. The United States will guarantee to the united Sac and Fox Nations, including the said British band of Sac Indians, the integrity of all the lands claimed by them westward of the Mississippi River, pursuant to the treaties of the years 1825 and 1830.

3. The United States require the united Sac and Fox Nations, including the aforesaid British band, to abandon all communication, and cease to hold any intercourse with any British post, garrison, or town, and never again to admit among them any agent or trader who has not derived his authority to hold commerce or other intercourse with them from the President of the United States or his authorized agent.

4. The United States demand an acknowledgment of their right to establish military posts, and roads, within the limits of the said country guaranteed by the second article of this agreement and capitulation, for the protection of the frontier inhabitants.

5. It is further agreed by the United States, that the principal friendly chiefs and headmen of the Sac and Fox Nations bind themselves to enforce, as far as may be in their power, the strict observance of each and every article of this agreement and capitulation; and at any time they find themselves unable to restrain their allies, the Pottawatomies, Kickapoos, or Winnebagos, to give immediate information thereof to the nearest military post.

6. And it is finally agreed by the contracting parties that henceforth permanent peace and friendship be established between the United States and the aforesaid band of Indians.

Major-Gen. by Brevet Com.

Governor of the State of Illinois.

Black Hawk and twenty-seven chiefs and warriors signed the above capitulation and treaty of peace.


Chapter LXXVII.

The Close of the First Campaign in the Black-Hawk War. — The Army Disbanded. — Corn and Provisions Given to the Indians. — Scenery of Rock Island. — The Indian Villages. — Indian Tradition. — A White Spirit.

ALTHOUGH General Gaines was a brave and stern warrior, who aided much in raising the army of the United States to the glory and grandeur it so deservedly possesses, yet his heart responded in the kindest manner to the distresses of human nature.

The unfortunate women and children, pertaining to the band of Black Hawk, were camped on the bank of the river, where they had nothing to eat or nothing to cover them from the inclemency of the weather. They had been deluded and ruined by the bad counsels and worse conduct of Black Hawk and other leaders of the tribe, but the helpless part of the band could not avoid it, they were in the hands of the chiefs and were ruined. Their distressed condition made a strong impression on General Gaines and myself. I know well my feelings for these deluded people were strong. I recollect well the argument I used to General Gaines — although, perhaps, he had as much benevolence at heart as I had — I observed, that I presumed this was the last time the Government would have any trouble with these Indians; the women and children were not so much to blame, they were starving, and that a support for them for one summer was nothing to the United States; that the Government possessed their fine country, and I could not be satisfied to leave them starving. We gave them more provisions than they would have raised on the fields they had left, and had it delivered to them at certain periods. But they are a race of people who will not observe the least economy or prudence, and I presume they did not take care of the provisions, and they were in want toward fall and winter.

Our treaty was ridiculed by the volunteers. It was called a corn treaty. It was said we gave them food when it ought to have been lead.

The army was disbanded, and returned home in good order According to my recollection, not a man was killed by accident, or died of disease, during the campaign. All returned home with the best spirits, knowing we had done our duty.

The scenery around Rock Island is not surpassed by any in the whole length of the Mississippi. It seems as though nature had made an effort in forming this beautiful and picturesque country. Rock Island itself presents a grand and imposing appearance, rising out of the waters of the Mississippi a solid


rock, with many feet elevation. It is several miles long and three-fourths of a mile wide. The rocks are covered with a fertile soil, at one time with a dense forest. The river washes around its base with a rapid current of pure and limpid water, and Rock River, a few miles south, is seen in the distance, forcing its way with great rapidity over the rocky rapide, into the father of waters. The country around is interspersed with beautiful groves of timber, which gives to the scene a sweetness and beauty that is rarely equalled. The blue hills in the distance, directing the course of the river, are seen on the north and south to rise with gentle slopes from the water to considerable elevations, and the valley between, embracing the river, is some miles in extent, presenting a variety of surface and beauty of landscape never surpassed.

On the west bank of the Mississippi is located the town of Davenport, and on the east side of the river is Stephenson, the county seat of Rock Island County. Both of these towns bid fair to become places of considerable business.

On the lower part of Rock Island stood, in former days, Fort Armstrong. It was situated on a high bluff of the island, almost projecting over the river. This elevated position of the fort gave it, from the river, an interesting and imposing appearance.

On the north bank of Rock River, a few miles south of the island, was built the old Sac Village. This Indian town was the largest in the West, and has existed about one hundred and fifty years.

On the Mississippi, nearly opposite and south of Rock Island, was the village of the Fox Indians, the allies, relatives, and friends of the Sacs. Time has consecrated both these villages in the estimation of the Indians, who respect them as the Jews did Jerusalem.

There is a tradition of the Indians as ancient as the Sac Village itself. It is this: A good spirit once made its peaceful abode in a cavern of the rocks, near the water, directly under the site of Fort Armstrong. It was at long intervals seen, and was as white as snow. Its wings were much larger than those of a swan, and its voice, in the Sac language, was the sweetest music. It was sent there by the Great Spirit to preside over the Sac and Fox Nations of Indians, and to direct them in the ways of wisdom and honesty. The Indians did not often approach its holy residence for fear they would disturb it. It delighted in goodness, but when the Americans arrived in the country, they were so bad that this good spirit flew off, never to return again.

It was the hostility to the whites, and perverseness of Black Hawk, that gave so much trouble and expense to the United states, and starvation and destruction to his own people. Black


Hawk was a treacherous and evil-disposed Indian; and the Eastern people, who extolled him so much, and some of his biographers, have attempted to give him a character and standing on his fraud and treachery to the United States. We all sympathize with the condition of the aborigines of the country, but when we discover treachery and corruption in any person, he cannot be sustained, no matter in what calamity his nation may be suffering.

Chapter LXXVIII.

The Black-Hawk War in 1832. — The British Band of Indians Invade the State. — Another Call on the Volunteers. — A Requisition by Gen. Atkinson, of the United States Army.

DURING the winter of 1831 and 1832, I heard rumors that Black Hawk and his band were dissatisfied, restless, and preparing for mischief. I presumed he would not be contented, as he disliked to reside near Keokuk, but I had not the most remote idea that he and band would dare to attempt to recross the river again, and occupy the old village. I thought this an absurdity and imprudence that no tribe of Indians would dare attempt after the proceedings of the last year.

The prophet, a chief of a band of Winnebago Indians who had a village on Rock River, some thirty miles above its mouth, joined Black Hawk on the west side of the Mississippi. This malicious and dangerous man, like the prophet on the Wabash River, in the late war with Britain, had great influence with the ignorant natives, and counselled Black Hawk and his band to their destruction. He made them believe that all the Indians on Rock River would join Black Hawk, if necessary, and that they could bid defiance to the whites. By this unwise counsel, and by the bad intentions of Black Hawk himself, he and band decided in the winter of 1832 to recross the Mississippi, and reside again in their old village, on Rock River. This decision was their destruction.

All winter, Black Hawk labored incessantly on the surrounding bands of Sacs and Foxes for recruits, and induced many to join him.

The British band, with Black Hawk at their head, assembled first at old Fort Madison, on the Mississippi, and marched up the river by land and water to the Yellow Banks, where Oquawka stands at this day, on the 6th of April, 1832. They amounted to about five hundred warriors — women, children, and dogs in proportion — and had with them all their horses, baggage, and wealth.

This hostile array of five hundred warriors, well provided with


arms, and with a settled determination to occupy the country again, spread a general panic throughout the whole frontiers, from the Mississippi to Lake Michigan. Many settlers, in the greatest terror of the Indians, abandoned their homes and farms, and moved into the interior of the State. The whole northern frontiers were alarmed, and almost daily messengers reached my residence in Belleville with the above information. I knew well the character of both the frontier-settlers and the Indians. One unlucky movement, on either side, might involve the whole frontier in a bloody war; and I reflected, also, on the great responsibility of levying troops at my own instance. But the danger of the frontiers was so pressing that I decided, on the 16th of April, to call out a large number of volunteers. I did this on my own responsibility, as I had not then received any requisition from General Atkinson, who commanded the regular forces at Rock Island. But the General, near the scene of danger, and about the same time, decided on the same course that I had adopted. He had received letters from reliable sources that the Indians were hostile, and that a war was inevitable. The Indian agent, Andrew S. Hughes, stated to him that "those Indians are hostile to the whites, and have invaded the State." Colonel Davenport, a merchant of Rock Island, also wrote General Atkinson "that from every information I have received, I am of the opinion that the intention of the British band of Sac Indians is to commit depredations on the inhabitants of the frontier." On the same day that he received these two letters, the 13th of April, he made a requisition on me, as governor, for the amount of forces I deemed necessary for the defence of the frontiers. He states that "the regular force under my command is too small to justify me in pursuing the hostile party." He further adds: "I think the frontier is in great danger, and will use all the means at my disposal to co-operate with you in its protection and defence."

To add still more to the wrongs committed by the hostile Indians, they had, not long after the treaty in 1831, made with General Gaines and myself, murdered twenty-five Menomonee Indians, under the protection of the United States, at Fort Crawford, preparing to make a treaty. The Government called on Black Hawk and the offending Indians to give up the murderers, which was entirely neglected.

Chapter LXXIX.

A Call on the Volunteers.

CONSIDERING the inhabitants on the frontier to be in great danger, I knew it was useless to raise troops if they were not with the greatest speed marched to the frontiers; and with this


view, I made the time the 22d inst., to meet at Beardstown, on the Illinois River. This gave the troops from Monroe and the counties on the north of the State only six days to organize and meet at the place designated. I was compelled to exert all the energy and influence I possessed to induce the volunteers to meet as quick as above stated. I despatched influential messengers to the counties where troops were to be levied, and I addressed a circular to the citizen-soldiers in the following words


Fellow Citizens:

Your country requires your services. The Indians have assumed a hostile attitude, and have invaded the State in violation of the treaty of last summer.

The British band of Sacs and other hostile Indians, headed by Black Hawk, are in possession of the Rock-River country to the great terror of the frontier inhabitants. I consider the settlers on the frontier to be in imminent danger.

I am in possession of the above information from gentlemen of respectable standing, and also from General Atkinson, whose character stands high with all classes.

In possession of the above facts and information, I have not hesitated as to the course, I should pursue. No citizen ought to remain inactive when his country is invaded, and the helpless part of the community are in danger. I have called out a strong detachment of militia to rendezvous at Beardstown on the 22d inst.

Provisions for the men and food for the horses will be furnished in abundance.

I hope my countrymen will realize my expectations and offer their services, as heretofore, with promptitude and cheerfulness, in defence of their country.

I left Belleville and visited the counties on my route to Beardstown. In Jacksonville, I called on my two friends, William Thomas and Murray McConnell, and they both volunteered. I appointed Mr. Thomas brigade-quartermaster, and afterwards Mr. McConnell was appointed a staff-officer. At this place, I received a line from three conspicuous gentlemen, Judge Young, Col. Strode, and Benjamin Mills, Esq., urging the speedy protection of the frontiers, as the inhabitants were in great danger. This letter was dated the 20th inst., at Dixon, which was then in the Indian country, and informed me that the Pottawatomie and Winnebago Indians had joined Black Hawk, and they presumed war was inevitable. As soon as I received this information, I ordered a levy of two hundred mounted-men to guard the frontiers between Rock River and the settlements on


the Illinois River, and Major Bailey to take command of them. On the 16th inst, I had ordered the same number — two hundred to be raised, and commanded by General Stillman as major. This corps was to guard the frontiers nearer to the Mississippi.

This spring, in 1832, was wet and backward, so that it was difficult to obtain horses or to sustain them; but never were troops more willing, and more speedy in offering their services, than those troops were.

Major Long, of Sangamon County, appeared at Beardstown with about two hundred volunteers who could not procure horses, but they were received and marched as infantry. Such patriotic men, who volunteered to march on foot with mounted men, I would not return home, let the consequences be what they might. I appointed again my two commissioners, Colonels Enoch C. March and Samuel C. Christy, to procure supplies for the army, amounting, perhaps, to two thousand men.

The volunteers were organized into four regiments, a spy-battalion, and an odd battalion. Elections were ordered of all the field-officers, except the brigadier-general, to command the volunteers, and the major of the spy-battalion, Colonel DeWitt, was elected to command the first regiment; Fry, the second; Thomas, of St. Clair County, the third; and Thompson, the fourth. Thomas James, of Monroe County, was elected major of the odd battalion. I appointed Samuel Whiteside the brigadier-general, and James D. Henry major to command the spy-battalion. The following named gentlemen I appointed as my staff: James T. B. Stapp and Joseph M. Chadwick my aids; James Turney, paymaster-general; Vital Jarrot, adjutant-general; and Cyrus Edwards, ordnance-officer. These officers ranked as colonels, and were paid as such.

On the 16th inst., I wrote two letters to Washington City; one to the Secretary of War, advising the General Government of my military proceedings, and the other to the Hon. Joseph Duncan to provide pay for the volunteers.

This campaign was similar to that of the previous year. Many of the most conspicuous and influential men in the State volunteered, whose condition in public life gave them a prominency that could not be overlooked in the organization.

I received at Beardstown, almost daily, horrid accounts of the determined hostility of the Indians, which caused me to issue orders to every county in the State to levy and organize in the whole at least five thousand volunteers, to be ready to march at a moment's warning. As the war progressed so slowly, this call on the militia turned out exceedingly well for the second campaign.

The danger was so pressing on the frontiers that I could not wait for wagons to convey our supplies, but on the 27th of


April ordered the whole army to march, with only a few days provision to last them to the Yellow Banks. Colonel March Colonel Christy having resigned — was dispatched to St. Louis for supplies, to meet the army at the Yellow Banks. I shipped Major Long's battalion of infantry on a steamboat to meet the army at Yellow Springs.

When I had all things ready for a march, I received a letter by express from General Atkinson, informing me that the hostile Indians had, on the 28th of April, passed up Rock River. This information was one day too late. If I had received it in time I would have made Peoria the place to meet the provisions, and from that point to pursue the Indians — but the die was cast. I could not do otherwise than march to the Yellow Banks. It is probable that if we had marched by Peoria, direct to Rock River, the campaign would have been closed in eight or ten days.

Chapter LXXX.

The Army Marched to the Mississippi. — Swim Henderson River on the Route. — Army out of Provisions. — Boat Arrives with Supplies. — March to Rock Island.

EARLY on a cold morning, the 27th of April, the army commenced its march from the place of its organization, a few miles north of Rushville, to the Yellow Banks. The earth was very wet and muddy, there being no roads, which gave the troops some trouble in marching and crossing the muddy streams without bridges. Toward evening of the third day we reached Henderson River, which was high, the water running to the top of the banks. The stream here, toward the mouth, is forty or fifty yards wide, and runs like a mill-tail. No bridge, boats, or any mode to cross it, except by rafting and swimming the horses, and an army of almost two thousand strong stopped at it. A great portion of the volunteers had been raised in the backwoods, and rafting and swimming streams were familiar to them.

The army was separated in two divisions, and each commenced to make rafts and cross the river. Some narrow points in the river were discovered, and trees from each side were cut in the stream, so that their tops reached and made a foot-way on which some crossed. The horses were forced over by swimming the stream. We had little or no provisions. I think a wagon or two were lost in the river, but they were recovered again when the water subsided.

At the division where I acted in crossing the stream, Major McConnell and others were very active in forcing the horses down a high bank, so that they were compelled to swim over


the river. Only one horse was drowned, and not a single man, in crossing almost two thousand volunteers, baggage and all, over Henderson River. The crossing was effected in less than three hours, all exerting themselves with that energy and vigor that is peculiar to the backwoodsmen. It is astonishing that two thousand men, horses, baggage, and all, could be crossed over a stream of this size, in less than three hours, without the loss of anything, except a horse or two. I believe the same army, in less than one day, could raft and cross the Mississippi.

When we reached the Yellow Banks, we found no provisions nor boat from St. Louis, although it was ordered to be there. I was in a critical situation. I had a large army a considerable distance out in the wilderness, and no provisions if the boat did not arrive from St. Louis. This was a time I passed with deep feelings of anxiety and pain for fear the boat and supplies would not reach the army. An accident to the vessel might occur, and thereby the army would be compelled to disband for the want of provisions. This was my situation for three days, the longest I thought I ever experienced. The army had literally nothing to eat, and I heard murmurs escape the troops, complaining of me for the situation I had placed them in. But at last, one morning, the 6th of May, the steamboat William Wallace, hove in sight in the Mississippi with plenty of provisions. This sight, was, I presume, the most interesting I ever beheld. Colonel March conducted the boat, and arrived barely in time to save the disaster of disbanding the army.

The evening after we reached the Yellow Banks, in a torrent of rain, Captain Warren, of Shelby County, with his company and another company, had swam the streams and joined us. It afforded the army much pleasure to witness the energy of these troops, and the volunteers greeted them with loud cheering.

Before the arrival of the boat with the provisions, on the 5th of May, I engaged three trusty pioneers, Messrs. Huitt, Tunnell, and Ames, of Green County, to deliver a letter that day to General Atkinson at Rock Island, about fifty miles from the Yellow Banks, informing him of our destitute condition. It was considered dangerous to swim creeks and the enemy lurking about. The letter was delivered that day, and a boat of provisions reached us the next day from Rock Island, but provisions by the William Wallace had arrived the morning of the same day.

At Beardstown, I had dispatched three men, who I thought were trusty, to visit Rock Island, and obtain, if possible, correct information of the enemy. The army, if the Indians were not too far off, would subdue them on the march to Rock Island, and close the war in a few days. But to my unspeakable mortification, my messengers loitered at Fort Armstrong with the officers, and did not return to me until they came in the boat


from Rock Island to the Yellow Banks. Only a few men can be trusted in every instance.

Soon after the arrival of the provisions, with the energy incident to the Illinois volunteers, we had ten days' provision issued to each soldier, and the baggage-wagons and all things ready for a march of the whole brigade direct to Dixon, on Rock River, where we heard of the enemy the last time. My spies had no information, and we relied on the knowledge of the enemy we received at Beardstown. But the boat just at dark that General Atkinson had sent down to us brought a letter to me informing me that Black Hawk and his band had descended the Rock River, and the letter also contained a request for the troops to march direct to Fort Armstrong, at Rock Island. We would have disregarded the latter part of the order, but if the Indians had descended Rock River, it was folly to march to Dixon when we were informed by General Atkinson we would find no enemy. We dashed our provisions into the boat in disgust, and all marched to the mouth of Rock River.

Chapter LXXXI.

Volunteers Received into the United States Service. — March up Rock River. — General Atkinson in Command. — Arrive at Dixon. — Orders to Major Stillman.

WE marched to the mouth of Rock River, where General Atkinson received the volunteers into the United States service and assumed the command. It was soon ascertained that Black Hawk and warriors had not descended the river, but were still up on Rock River. The army, under the order of Gen. Atkinson, after receiving provisions, commenced its march up the river on the 9th of May, in pursuit of the enemy. Although I was not in command, it was considered proper by Gen. Atkinson and myself that I should remain with the army, and I did so. I discovered that my presence and council to the volunteers had a tendency to harmonize and conciliate them with the regular army. I had, immediately under my command, many troops guarding the frontiers, so that I considered it my duty to advance the service for me to act with the army all summer, and I did so. Although I never requested it, the President recognized me as a major-general, and paid me accordingly. Not any time during the summer, and long after the treaties with the Indians were made, did I know the rank and situation the General Government recognized me in. I performed all the services I did, on my own judgment, to advance the best interests of the country.

General Atkinson, with the regulars, four or five hundred


strong, with cannon and provisions, sailed up Rock River. It was very swampy near the river, and the brigade was much troubled with bad travelling, there being no roads.

It made us sorry to see often at the camp-ground of Black Hawk a small dog immolated to appease the Great Spirit, and to relieve them from their calamity. It is the custom of the Indians, like the Asiatics of olden times, to sacrifice an animal to the Great Spirit to relieve the nation from a great calamity. The dog would be tied to a tree, his entrails cut out, and hanging, and a small fire had been made under him. The nose of the dog was always pointed the course the Indians were travelling. All reflecting persons during the whole Black-Hawk war were sorry that the deluded savages had forced us into the war. We were compelled to chastise them to secure the rights of the citizens, and to prevent them from killing the inhabitants. All the surrounding Indians were hostile, and ready to join Black Hawk, and had promised him. Under these circumstances we were acting in self-defence, and to repel the aggression of the deluded and wicked Indian, Black Hawk, and their leaders.

On the day before we commenced the march up Rock River, I engaged two trusty and worthy spies, Colonel John Ewing and Major John A. Wakefield, to discover the location of the enemy if possible, and report to me on our progress up the river. I employed also a guide, Mr. Kinney, who could understand imperfectly the Sac language, to accompany them.

On the 10th of May, the spies met the, army near the Prophet's town, on Rock River, and had captured an Indian. He informed us, truly, that Black Hawk and his band were on Rock River, above Dixon. About twelve miles above the Prophet's town we encamped, and decided to leave the onerous and cumbersome baggage and make a forced march to overtake the hostile Indians. I wrote a letter to General Atkinson of the facts, and we marched off early in the morning hoping to overtake Black Hawk in a short time.

We reached Dixon on the morning of the 12th, and there received information from Colonels Stephenson, Strode, and others, that scouts had been out for fifty miles up the river, and around; that the hostile Indians had dispersed to collect food, and that they were nowhere near in a body. This information, coming from Mr. Dixon and other respectable sources, gained credence, and we gave up the pursuit of the enemy until General Atkinson arrived with the boats and provisions. We had with us only provisions enough for a day or two and that was nearly exhausted. This information was distressing and painful to the army, but we believed the report and acted on it accordingly.

Judging from this information, I believe Black Hawk was about to reside on the lands of the Pottawatomies, and to


prevent it I addressed a "talk" to the chiefs of that nation at the Pawpaw Grove. I selected five young and energetic men from the army, Major Dement, Colonels Stapp, and Joseph M. Chadwick, and Messrs. Wyat Stapp, Benjamin Moore, and Louis Wilmatte, to bear the dispatch to the Indians. The Pawpaw Grove was about fifty miles from Dixon. These messengers in the cloudy weather got bewildered and fell in on a party of hostile Indians belonging to Black-Hawk's band. The Indians tried in a very adroit manner to decoy the whites to the large band of warriors, but the Americans eluded the attempt. After much diplomacy, on horseback, the whites escaped to the main army, and the Indians to their grand army, both to obtain recruits. These young men were exhausted, as well as their horses, when they reached the army at Dixon. They had been on horseback almost forty-eight hours, without rest, food, or sleep, and were in danger of being killed.

When the army arrived at Dixon and gave out the pursuit of the enemy for the present, we found the two battalions of Major Stillman and Bailey, whom I had ordered to protect the frontiers at Dixon, with plenty of provisions, and had performed little or no service since they were organized.

The officers and privates of these battalions solicited me warmly to permit them to reconnoitre the frontiers, and report where the enemy were lodged, if they could discover it.

It was rumored that a small band of the Black-Hawk party were camped at the head of "Old-Man's Creek," about twelve miles above Dixon. I considered that these troops would be better moving about than camped, and that it was my duty to place them on the frontier. They might discover the enemy. I signed the following order to Major Stillman:

DIXON'S FERRY, May 12th, 1832.


You will cause the troops under your immediate command and the battalion under Major Bailey, to proceed without delay, with four days' provisions, to the head of "Old-Man's Creek," where it is supposed there are some hostile Indians, and coerce them into submission.

Com. in Chief of the Illinois Militia


Chapter LXXXII.

Stillman's March. — Battle and Retreat. — Eleven White Men and Eight Indians Killed.

Major Stillman was, at the time he commanded the battalion, a general of the militia north of the Illinois River, and was a military man in good standing. I knew many prominent men in this corps — Colonels Stephenson and Strode, and many other distinguished characters. One misfortune was, the officers, Stillman and Bailey, had some misunderstanding as to the command of the battalion.

On the 13th of May, in the morning, Major Stillman marched out from Dixon with military display. He had with him about two hundred and seventy-five men, with the necessary equipments.

While the Brigade of General Whiteside was waiting for General Atkinson and the provisions, so as to march against the enemy, about one o'clock of the night of the 15th of May, the stragglers and soldiers of Major Stillman, who had escaped from the battle, reached my tent at Dixon, and narrated such horrid and tragical stories of the disaster with the Indians, that it was truly alarming and shocking. The soldiers, after the retreat, arrived at Dixon in utter confusion, without the least order or discipline, and each one told his story according to his own terrified imagination. According as the tales of woe and horror were told, they impressed the army at Dixon with the confused idea of much bloodshed and carnage. Those narrating the disaster generally believed and stated they were about all that had escaped. Often while one was telling of the destruction of his comrade, the person himself would appear and contradict the story of his death. Such confusive and contradictory statements were at first told, that no one knew what to believe. I recollect that my first impression was that most of the battalion were destroyed, but the stragglers kept coming in until we saw that the affair was not so bad as we had expected it to be at first.

In the morning, the troops who were in the battle were paraded, and it appeared that fifty-two were absent, and we presumed that number had been killed. This figure got into the Papers from the morning's report, and circulated throughout the United States.

Major Stillman had marched his battalion twenty-five miles up Rock River, in a wrong direction from my order, and was about sunset the second day, (the 14th of May, 1832,) preparing to camp within a few miles of the main lodgment of Black-Hawk, and a portion of his band. During the preparations to


camp the troops were in much confusion and disorder. The Major had omitted to have either spies or sentinels out at this important crisis. In this confused state of the troops, some unsaddling their horses, others making fires, some fixing tent poles, and all in a state of easy carelessness and security, three Indians, unarmed, with a white flag, made their appearance near the encampment. These Indians gave themselves up, and were taken into custody, as hostages, by order of the officers. Not many, or perhaps any of the Americans understood the Indian language sufficiently to hold a conversation with them, but it would seem, the circumstances of the case were sufficiently expressive to make all understand the motive of the prisoners. Soon after the three unarmed Indians were taken into custody, six armed Indians appeared on horseback on a hill three-fourths of a mile from the encampment. Without any orders, a few soldiers and some officers commenced an irregular chase of the Indians, on horseback, and pursued them for four or five miles. During this race in the prairie, a great portion of the troops mounted their horses and joined, without orders, in the disorderly chase of the Indians. The whites became engaged in the pursuit, and having the best horses, overtook two Indians and killed them. Major Hackleton, of Fulton County, was dismounted, and had a personal combat with an Indian, also dismounted. By assistance from the whites, the Major killed his tawny antagonist. In this irregular running conflict three Indians were killed, without any loss of the whites.

During this skirmish, which extended over four or five miles of the smooth prairie, between the encampment and the mouth of Sycamore Creek, the volunteers at the camp knowing blood was shed, attempted to kill the three unarmed Indians, who had been taken into custody as hostages; under the protection of the white flag. One Indian was killed, but in the dark and confusion the other two escaped unhurt.

At the time Stillman's volunteers had this running skirmish in the prairie, Black Hawk had many of his friends of the Pottawatomie nation feasting with him on dog meat. He had a lodgment established on Rock River at the mouth of Sycamore Creek, at which place he was entertaining his friends at the time.

The retreating Indians had almost reached the camp of Black-Hawk, where he was feasting, and the whites at their heels, hooping, yelling, and shouting, after the manner of a disorderly battle with the Indians. This uproar alarmed Black Hawk and the Indians at the feast, and they, in a hasty, tumultuous manner, mounted their horses, snatched up their arms, and rushed out in all the fury of a mad lioness in defence of their women and children.

Black Hawk took a prudent and wise stand, concealed behind


some woods, (then nearly dark,) so that the straggling and unmanageable forces of Major Stillman approached near him.

It was a crisis with the Indians — they fought in defence of all they held the most sacred on earth, and they performed their operations under the eye of an experienced warrior, Black Hawk himself.

This aged warrior and his band (all he could muster at the moment) marched out from his concealment, and fell in with fury and havoc on the disorderly troops of Stillman, who were scattered for miles over the prairie. Black Hawk turned the tide of war, and chased the whites with great fury.

The camp of Black Hawk was five or six miles from the encampment of Major Stillman, and the Indians forced the whites back to the white camp with great speed, and killed in the chase one white man.

By the time the volunteers reached Stillman's camp it was quite dark and the troops at the camp, hearing the yelling, terrible sounds of the horses' feet, and shooting, supposed all the warriors of the whole Black Hawk band were on them like an avalanche. This produced a general panic and indifference of the exertions of the officers and the volunteers, although placed in battle array at the camp, fled with their comrades whom Black Hawk was chasing.

A small muddy creek flowed near the camp of Stillman, and the crossing of it was difficult for both whites and Indians. Horses mired in it, and some white men were killed in it. This creek has been baptised with the name of Stillman's Run, which it retains to this day. After the troops crossed the creek, the officers made an effort to rally them, but to no purpose. A general and furious retreat was commenced, each one seeking his own safety according to his own discretion. It was in this confused and precipitated flight, where most of the volunteers, who were killed, closed their eyes forever. One case in particular, among many others, excited much sympathy and deep feeling: Captain Adams was found dead with two Indians, also dead, near him. This bloody personal combat was off from the general route, a short distance up the creek. The evidence was seen the next day by many, of the most shocking fight between three men, and all three lay dead within a few feet of each other. No one remained alive to tell the story of the battle. They fought with every class of weapon in their possession, and the guns shivered, and the mortal wounds inflicted, proved that all were used in this deadly conflict. The earth was soft in the spring, and the evidence next day remained on it of the utmost exertions of human power in this battle, where two contended against one. The wounds were deep and numerous on the three dead bodies, made by rifle balls, spears, tomahawks, and butcher knives. The Indians did not scalp Captain Adams, giving him the honor of a great brave.


The Indians chased the whites twelve or fifteen miles, and the horses of the volunteers being the fleetest, saved the corps.

It is difficult to ascertain exactly the number of Indians under Black Hawk that were engaged in the battle. Black Hawk in his book says he had only forty in all, and judging from all I can discover in the premises, I believe the number of warriors were between fifty and sixty — some of the volunteers engaged in the scene supposed them to be several hundred, and some presumed them to be all of Black Hawk's warriors, which would swell them up to four or five hundred.

It was true, as it was reported to me by confidential scouts that the warriors at the time were not in a body, but were scattered in search of roots to eat, and that only a few were together in a band. It is an incontestable fact, that Black Hawk had made no arrangements for the battle, or otherwise he would not have been found at his ease — feasting his friends among his women and children — and it is astonishing that he did make such an effort on the spur of the occasion as he did. He had, I presume, the permission of the Pottawatomies, on whose land he was, to establish a village there, as the squaws had commenced to sow their seeds, and to plant their grain for a crop, on Rock River, at the mouth of Sycamore Creek.

Black Hawk says in his book, which I believe to be true, that he tried at Stillman's Run to call back his warriors, as he supposed the whites were making a sham retreat on purpose to draw him into an ambuscade of the whole army, under General Whiteside. He says he had not the least idea that the whites were retreating in good earnest, but he could not draw off his young warriors. Their courage gave him great pleasure, as he stated.

Major Hackleton and some others on foot escaped, and reached the army at Dixon in safety. It was ascertained the next day after the battle, that only eleven white men were killed, instead of the number first reported to have been slain, which greatly quieted the public mind. About eight Indians were killed in all.

The cause of this disaster was the want of discipline, subordination, and the proper previous arrangements of the officers. The material of this corps was as good and efficient as ever appeared "in the deadly breach;" but they were citizens uninformed in the science and art of war. If those volunteers, officers, and privates, had been trained to war, and commanded by an Anthony Wayne or an Andrew Jackson, they would have been able to whip, in a pitched battle, Black Hawk and his whole band. This battle and hasty retreat was much condemned by the army and the public generally.

The Indians destroyed all the wagons and property, which the volunteers abandoned in their camps. I saw, the next day


after the battle, the fragments of cut and burned wagons, and other articles, that showed the evidence of savage warfare. Empty kegs were also left, that had contained, as the Indians call it, "fire-water." This was a partial cause of the disasters, it was supposed at the time.

Chapter LXXXIII.

A Call for Two Thousand Volunteers. — The Army March to the Battle Ground and Bury the Dead. — The Volunteers Return to Dixon.

ON the same night that I obtained the information of the disaster of Major Stillman, I ordered out two thousand new volunteers, and made preparations to defend the frontiers more efficiently. This battle decided the affair to be war; and I knew the Indians would commit depredations on the inhabitants. I also discovered disaffection in the army under General Whiteside, and that it was improbable that we could reach the enemy with the present brigade. Disaffection existed as to some of the commanding officers. I knew it would be easy to disband the new levies of volunteers if they were not needed. At all events, I wrote out the orders by candle-light for the new troops, on my own responsibility, without the requisition of the General Government, and had all ready by daylight for the expresses to start with them to the respective counties.

I appointed John Ewing, Robert Blackwell, and John A. Wakefield to distribute the orders to the various counties — and they performed their duty efficiently.

I also, the same night, empowered Colonel Strode, who was present, and the Colonel of Joe Davis County, to organize the militia of his county, and defend it with them. I gave him great power and he acted well.

General Dodge was camped in the vicinity, on the north side of Rock River, and I wrote him, also at night, the facts of Stillman's disaster, and that his frontiers of Wisconsin would be in danger. He returned immediately to Wisconsin.

I appointed Major Horn to carry a dispatch to St. Louis, to Colonel March, the quartermaster, to provide provisions for the two thousand volunteers at Hennepin, on the Illinois. I wrote a letter, also in the same night, to General Atkinson, coming up the river in barges to Dixon, of the disaster of Major Stillman, and that the army were in need of provisions. The last order was to Major Adams, now of Alton, to procure at Quincy, corn for the horses. All these orders were issued and recorded by my staff-officers in a short time, just before day on the 15th of May, and all the messengers were off by daylight. The new


levies were to meet, some at Beardstown, on the 3d of June, and the others at Hennepin, on the 10th of the same month.

It will be seen by the above dates, that the time to rendezvous was exceedingly short. The expresses had to ride on horseback from Dixon to the counties in the southern section of the State, and the troops to assemble and march back several hundred miles in this limited time. The precaution I observed to cause the volunteers to be organized aided much in this hasty call of the volunteers.

Early in the morning of the 15th of May, some beeves were slaughtered, all the provisions mustered, and the army marched to the battle-ground. It was about twenty-five miles from Dixon; and when we reached the scene, in the evening, it looked melancholy and appalling to troops who had, for the first time, witnessed such a sight. The bodies of the volunteers who had been killed, were mostly cut and mangled in a horrid manner. Many horses also lay dead on the scene of action. All the bodies, and parts of bodies that could be found, were buried, and the army remained on the ground all night.

When it was discovered that only eleven white men were killed, it was a general rejoicing that the disaster was no worse.

The night that we were camped here we heard the reports of large guns, which we supposed were signals to collect in the warriors for defence, but we were then out of provisions, and could not pursue them. Major Henry and his spy-battalion were ordered out to reconnoitre, and he reported that the Indians had left in great haste, and were not near, as he presumed. The next day, the 16th, the army marched back again to Dixon for provisions, at which place, upon our return, we found that the boats with them had not yet arrived.

Chapter LXXXIV.

The whole Army March in Pursuit of the Indians. — Return Home by Ottawa.

On the 17th of May, I ordered a regiment to be formed out of the two battalions of Stillman and Bailey, and to elect a colonel. General Johnson, of McLean County, was elected colonel of the regiment. On the same day, General Atkinson arrived with the provisions. He ordered a fort of turf to be erected on the north side of Rock River, opposite Dixon, in which to store the provisions and to protect them.

The volunteers remaining idle at Dixon some days, and that without provisions, became dissatisfied, and murmured for home. They said the truth, that they had volunteered in such a hurry to protect the frontiers, and had not arranged to remain in the


service only for a short time, as they expected the Indians would be chastised in a few days. They had no clothes with them, and many of their families were not provided for at home. These were all true statements I knew, and I knew, also, that the term of their enlistment was undefined, and they had the power to return after the performance of the service they had done; but I appealed to their patriotism, and exerted whatever influence I had, and prevailed on them to remain in service for twelve or fifteen days longer, as the object of the campaign was not accomplished. They consented to my request, and prepared provisions for a march in search of the enemy.

After the regiment of Colonel Johnson was organized, General Atkinson received it into the United States service, and a part of it, with the Colonel, he ordered to Ottawa, to defend that post, whilst the other part remained at Dixon to guard the stores.

On the 19th of May the whole army, volunteers and regulars, under the command of General Atkinson, commenced the march up Rock River in pursuit of Black Hawk and his band. My staff and myself also marched with the army. I pursued this course to conciliate good feelings in the army, and to assist generally in the campaign.

General Atkinson and staff, with the cannon, marched with the volunteers, and toward evening an express reached us informing us of the murder of several families on Indian Creek, fifteen miles north of Ottawa. This murder caused the General to return to the frontiers to give protection to the inhabitants. He ordered the army under General Whiteside and Colonel Taylor to pursue the Indians, and caused the regulars who had ascended the river to return to Dixon. Colonel Harney, and many distinguished officers of the United States army, marched with the volunteers. Major Long's battalion left the boat and marched with the mounted men. It was like following a shadow, to pursue Black Hawk and his band, and so uncertain to overtake the enemy that our men became disheartened and murmured considerably.

After several days' march, the army reached a large Pottawatomie village on Sycamore Creek, but no Indians were in it. The trail of Black Hawk led to it, and there we found, cached in the earth, some of the articles the enemy had captured at Stillman's battle. We also found scalps, taken at the Indian Creek murder, near Ottawa. We concluded that Black Hawk had marched to this Indian town thinking to obtain protection by the Pottawatomie; but his friends of the other nations of Indians were afraid to do it, although no doubt they had promised it. Our large force in the field prevented it. From this village the Indian trail seemed to diverge, and scatter, as if on purpose to elude our pursuit.


While the army lay at this village, Major William G. Brown and my brother, Thomas Reynolds, were out all night in search of lost horses, and in the dark came in direct contact with a large Indian force. This band of Black Hawk was secretly and silently stealing off in the dark to get away from the whites and to join their comrades. These volunteers reported a large body of the enemy, and it is strange that they were not killed. This information made the army believe that a great part of the enemy were not far off. The trails of the Indians pointed north, toward Rock River, and the course home, by Ottawa, was south, so that at this point it made the army decide whether they would pursue the Indians any further or return home. General Atkinson gave me the power to discharge the army at any moment when in my judgment it was proper. A great disposition was expressed by many of the officers against pursuing the enemy any longer. All the regular officers, and particularly Colonel Taylor, afterwards the president of the United States, urged on the volunteers strongly to continue the march in pursuit of the Indians for a few days. I exerted all my influence to continue on, and the officers agreed at least to have a meeting and the majority should govern. I convened all of the officers, captains and upwards, in my tent, early in the morning, and after long discussions I put the question to vote. It was an equal vote, one-half for pursuing the Indians, and the other half for returning home. By some means General Whiteside was not disposed to follow the enemy any longer, and said if a majority of the officers decided to pursue the Indians, he would not do it. He was the commander when General Atkinson was not present. No doubt if Atkinson had been there the army would have continued on. We had some days' provisions, and in one or two days, by forced marches, the enemy might be reached. I proposed to make a fort at this Indian village for those unable or unwilling to march to remain at until we returned from the pursuit of the enemy, but no entreaty would prevail, and we had not the power to command, as it was vested in General Whiteside.

Chapter LXXXV.

The Army Returned Home. — Discharged at Ottawa. — A Regime Volunteered to Guard the Frontier. — Capt. Snyder's Battle with the Indians.

IT was decided at the Pottawatomie Village that the army would march to Ottawa and be discharged. Colonel Taylor, Major Harney, of the regular army, and many volunteer officers and myself, discussed the matter, whether it would not


proper to raise a volunteer corps to pursue the Indians; but we concluded it would look riotous and reckless to divide the army, and it might not advance the interest of the country, and accordingly we were, with heavy hearts, compelled to surrender the pursuit of the enemy for the time present.

We marched four days south to Ottawa, with deep feelings of mortification, and with irritable and bad feelings also. On the route, we found some of the scalps of the women and children who had been killed on Indian Creek. They no doubt were laid on our trail by the Indians, as a bravado, and to tantalize us. I recollect well the hair of an infant, and that of an aged lady that was perfectly gray. This sight at the Indian village would have decided the army to seek vengeance on the perpetrators of this murder.

I had the power to discharge the army at my discretion, and on the 27th and 28th days of May, at Ottawa, the whole army was discharged.

On the 28th, Gen. Atkinson crossed over from Dixon to Ottawa with only his staff, which was considered dangerous. He highly approved of my conduct in calling out the volunteers, as I did at Dixon, and requested of me one thousand more, making in all three thousand strong, besides a thousand or more to guard the frontiers.

I dispatched efficient messengers to raise the new troops. I called on the counties, nearest to the scene of action, who were not in the last campaign. Thus ended this campaign without effecting anything, although many of the most talented and conspicuous characters in the State were in it, and the same may be said of the regular officers. Col. Taylor, the hero of Buena Vista, the late president of the United States, and Major Harney, the champion of Cerra Gorda, and many other distinguished officers, were also in this campaign. I felt the deepest mortification to be compelled to abandon the campaign without any good result, and that, too, with as fine a corps as ever appeared in the tended field; but such is the fate of war. The enemy could not under that arrangement be overtaken. The same reverses a few years afterward were experienced in the Seminole war in Florida.

On the 28th of May, I received notice that a fine regiment, under the command of Col. Moore, from Vermillion County, appeared on the frontiers to give immediate relief to the inhabitants, and as they had performed the services they contemplated, they were ordered home with the thanks of the commander-in-chief of the militia for their promptness in the defence of the frontiers.

Marching with the volunteers, I met General Atkinson at Ottawa, where the army was discharged, and we knew well the bitter feelings of the Indians against the whites. The Indians


far and near were poisoned against the Americans by Black Hawk, and the settlements were in imminent danger before other troops could reach the frontiers.

Under these exciting circumstances, both the general and myself appealed to the patriotism of the disbanded troops to organize one regiment for twenty days to protect the frontiers. The regiment volunteered, and were organized, Jacob Fry was elected colonel, James D. Henry, lieutenant-colonel, and John Thomas, major. There were six companies in the regiment.

A part of the company of Adam W. Snyder was ordered to make a stand at Kellog's Grove, and scour the country. The companies generally consisted of sixty or seventy men. Major John Thomas, although he had command of a battalion, and Capt. Snyder's company composed part of it, he preferred leaving his command at Ottawa and acting as high private.

On the night of the 15th of June, 1832, the sentinels were posted around the station at Kellog's Grove, within about eighty yards of the encampment. About midnight, of an extremely cloudy, dark night, with vivid flashes of lightning, a sentinel, although he kept up a most vigilent watch, heard an Indian breathe a long breath, which was the first indication of the near approach of the Indian warriors. The sentinel was placed at a tree in an old field, and the Indian was at the other side of the same tree. The white man leaned his body around the tree to see if he could discern the enemy, and at that moment a flash of lightning enabled him to see three Indians well armed within two or three feet of him. The American soldier, as quick as thought, attempted to run the nearest man through with his bayonet, but he was so near the Indian that he hit his shoulder with his gun, and the warrior grasped the soldier. The Indian got so close to the white man that the gun and bayonet were useless. The Indian seized his foe, but the American, with superior strength and energy in the twinkling of an eye, hurled the Indian from him, and run with his gun to the tents hollowing at the top of his voice, "Indians! Indians!" The Indians pursued him to within twenty yards of the camp, and shot at him, but missed him. In the morning the tracks of the Indians were seen at the tree, and the ground torn up where the scuffle occurred between the white man and Indian. Also the moccasin tracks of the Indians were seen pursuing the sentinel within a short distance of the tents.

The shouting of the sentinel showed him in danger and in a "tight fit," which wakened the troops before the Indian fired his gun; but the report of the gun roused all the Americans to arms in a few seconds. It was supposed that the Indians saw the sentinel when it lightened, and crept up in their stealthy manner to the opposite side of the tree from him, and was about to strike the tomahawk into the white man, when he was


discovered as above stated. It was strange how the sentinel escaped. The rest of the guards stood at their posts until the gallant officers, Maj. Riley and Capt. Snyder called them in, All the troops remained under arms until daylight, expecting every minute a sanguinary conflict in the dark, like that at Tipnecanoe, but the enemy did not approach.

Early in the morning, Capt. Snyder mustered all his mounted men to pursue the Indians who had been around the fort. The object of the Indians was to steal horses, and they had taken one blind horse. Maj. Thomas volunteered with the company in pursuit of the Indians. He preferred danger and action to a quiet life in a fort at Ottawa. The troops under the command of Capt. Snyder amounted to twenty-five men, including the officers. Capt. Snyder, 1st lieut. John Winstanly, and 2d lieut. John T. Lusk. The Indian trail was pursued with great activity in a south-west course for sixteen or eighteen miles. The Indians seemed to strike for the Mississippi, and made great effort to escape the vigilant Capt. Snyder and company.

In a deep ravine by a fountain, the Indians were cooking their breakfast. They had on the fire their kettle and other preparations for their meal. It was supposed by the trail and other signs there were six or seven Indians in all. They saw the whites first and fled, leaving all behind them, blind horse and all, except their guns. They then turned their course back, almost on the same route they had come from the spring where they were cooking. This made Maj. Thomas, Capt. Snyder, and others, believe the Indians were seeking their comrades, who were in a large body in the neighborhood, which induced the whites to pursue them with more caution and activity. The Indians returned within two or three miles of Kellog's Grove, where they were discovered, on a high hill, almost a mile in advance. The volunteers had to cross a muddy creek which detained them some time, but in a short distance the Indians were discovered concealed in a ravine made by a stream of water. The whites rushed on them with caution, from tree to tree; but Macomson, seeing one of the Indians exposed, prepared to shoot him, but the Indian was too quick for him and shot him first. Two balls entered his body near the side of the lower abdomen, and the wound was mortal. In a few seconds, all the four Indians in the ravine were killed, but they fired and fought with desperate courage. One large warrior in the bloody carnage came out of the gully and hollowed aloud as if shouting to his brother warriors at a distance. At his return, he was shot with a half-dozen balls, and fell never to rise again. The bodies of these four warriors lay in the gully, and their bones to bleach on the scene of this bloody conflict. If there had been more Indians in the band, they had escaped before the whites came upon them.


Macomson lay mortally wounded, and his gun by him still loaded. A litter was made of poles and blankets on which to carry him to Kellog's Grove, which was two or three miles off. It required four men at a time to carry him. This operation discomfitted the troops very much. Many of the guns of the soldiers were changed, and some were not again loaded at all. Although every one knew there was imminent danger, yet the volunteers risked their lives for the want of discipline. The troops had marched in a run, most of the day, more than thirty miles in pursuit of the Indians they had killed, and parties were permitted to search for water. About three-quarters of a mile from the place where the four Indians were killed Macomson, demanded to be let down to rest. In fact, he was then dying, and complaining for water.

Gen. Whiteside, Johnson, and Taylor, went on one side to look for water, and Dr. Richard Roman, Benj. Scott, McDaniel Dr. F. Jarrot, and Dr. Cornelius retired on the other side in the same pursuit for water. The last-named party, five in all, were moving slowly down a ridge to a point having a bushy ravine on each side of them. The warriors of Black Hawk, to the amount of from ninety to a hundred, lay concealed in these ravines on both sides of the whites, and fired more than fifty guns at them as it was supposed. The number of Indians was ascertained by their different places of concealment in the grass and bushes in the ravines on each side of the five volunteers.

In the first fire, Benjamin Scott and — McDaniel, both of St. Clair County, were instantly killed, and the Indians were so near them that their clothes were powder-burnt. It was a miracle that the whole five men were not killed. The survivors, the three doctors, retreated with all possible speed on their horses to the main body, who were guarding the dying Macomson.

The volunteers were taken by surprise. A retreat was inevitable, and the best and only course that could save the detachment. After remaining in that position some short time, and firing a few guns at the Indians without effect, the volunteers retired in good order to wait for re-inforcement from Major Riley.

Capt. Snyder had ordered a messenger to go two or three miles to Kellog's Grove and solicit relief from Maj. Riley, but he had not gone. Maj. Thomas volunteered his service which was accepted. It was considered exceedingly dangerous for one man to make this trip, as it was supposed the Indians would waylay him on the route. Thomas reached the fort in safety, and Maj. Riley and two companies of infantry were on the run to relieve the captain, in a few minutes after Thomas' arrival.

Maj. Riley found Capt. Snyder and the volunteers waiting the re-inforcement to enable them to attack the enemy, but


Riley then had the command and he considered it unwise and headstrong to attempt anything that night. The whole force marched back to Kellog's Grove, but returned at an early hour to the bloody scene of the day before.

The Indians had been concealed, expecting the whole white force at night, but had retired about daylight. It rained that night, and the enemy left after the rain.

The dead bodies of Scott, McDaniel, and Macomson, were decently interred at Kellog's Grove, and the main army arriving on the frontiers, the brave and efficient company under the command of equally brave and efficient officers were discharged on the 19th of June, at Dixon's Ferry, by Col. Taylor. The whole regiment was also discharged.

Chapter LXXXVI.

Indian Depredations. — Attack of Apple-Creek Fort. — Brilliant Victory of Gen. Dodge. — Capt. Stephenson's Battle.

THE country was all in a panic on account of Indian murders being committed in every direction; and in fact the savages exhibited a courage and propensity for bloodshed that was, on the frontiers, appalling. Fifteen persons — men, women, and children — were killed of three families, Hall, Davis, and Pettigrew. Two girls, the Miss Halls, were taken prisoners.

On the 22d May, Gen. Atkinson despatched Mr. St. Vrain, and some other persons, as an express from Dixon to Rock Island, and they were all killed by the Indians. A man was killed on Bureau Creek, within a few miles of Princeton, and several others in the region north of Ottawa.

About the time the new troops reached the rendezvous at Fort Wilburn, Black Hawk, with about one hundred and fifty warriors, made an attack on Apple Creek Fort, twelve miles south of Galena, and attempted to storm it. This fort was made in wooden-stockade fashion, with strong block-houses at the corners. It was defended by twenty-five men who fought with the greatest courage, believing that it was better to die in the fort than to be butchered by the Indians. The enemy took possession of some cabins near the fort, and made great efforts to burn and capture the fort. The battle was kept up for fifteen hours, with desperate fury on both sides, when the Indians retreated. A messenger reached Galena and gave the alarm. Col. Strode, with a respectable force from Galena, arrived after the enemy had left. The Indians had killed much of the stock and took away cattle, horses, and flour, as much as they could carry. It is supposed that many of the disaffected Pottawatomie and Winnebago Indians were in this attack on


Apple-Creek Fort, under the command of Black Hawk. The loss of the Indians in this battle could not be ascertained, but in the fort only one man was killed and one wounded.

On the 24th June, two men were killed by the Indians, and one made his escape to Fort Hamilton, east of Galena, forty or fifty miles. Soon after the skirmish Gen. Dodge came to the fort with twenty men, and immediately pursued the trail of the Indians. The heroic commander and his equally brave troops reached the Indians at the Pecatonica Creek — the enemy took refuge under the bank of the creek. The Americans rushed on the Indians, eleven in number, and killed all of them. General Dodge lost three of his men, and one wounded. This action, although small, was achieved with great intrepidity and success, so much so that it gained the noble and undaunted heroes engaged in it much honor and character.

Capt. Stephenson, of Galena, and part of his company about the same time fell in with a party of Indians between Apple-Creek Fork and Kellog's Grove. The whites ran the Indians five miles in the prairie, and the red men at last took refuge in a dense thicket surrounded by the prairie. The captain and his small detachment, with great courage, charged on the Indians three different times, and were always repulsed. The Indians had the advantage, being concealed in the thick bushes and the whites approaching them. Stephenson had three of his men killed, and he himself was wounded in the breast, which was supposed to be mortal. He was compelled to abandon the Indians. It is not known how many Indians, if any, were killed. This was considered a rash and reckless charge, showing a desperate courage.

After arranging matters on the frontiers, I returned to the settlements to see if the call for new levies was advancing, to recruit the army again. I discovered that the masses were enthusiastic, and preparing for the service in great numbers. I remained at home only a few days, and then returned to the frontiers again.

Chapter LXXXVII.

Arrival of the Troops on the Frontiers. — Organization of the New Army. — Major Dement's Battle.

THE troops, four companies, met at Beardstown, on the Illinois River, as ordered, about the third of June, and elected two talented and efficient officers to command them. T. W. Smith one of the judges of the supreme court, was elected lieutenant colonel, and Sidney Breese, a prominent and distinguished lawyer, major of the spy-battalion. This corps marched on


the frontiers north of the Illinois River to Fort Wilburn, the place that the army was organized.

As I returned to the frontiers I found many of the troops already at Hennepin, but they were ordered to Fort Wilburn. Col March had ordered Lieut. Wilburn with some provisions up the Illinois River, and he erected a small establishment which was called Fort Wilburn. It was situated on the southern bank of the Illinois River, about a mile above Peru.

At this point, several thousand volunteers and citizens appeared, so that the country on both sides of the river was covered with human beings and horses. It was extremely difficult, and required both patience and judgment to organize this great mass of people into an army without causing some dissatisfaction and at the same time to make it efficient. The war had attracted attention, and many of the most prominent and conspicuous men in the State appeared on the frontier and wanted office.

I decided that the officers should be chosen by the troops over whom they were to act; and, therefore, all above the Captains were elected. At first the volunteers were all unknown to one another; but in two campaigns some developments of character were made, which enabled the troops to select proper officers. Three brigades were organized by myself, on consultation with the captains of companies, and three generals were elected by the troops to command them.

On the 16th of June, Alexander Posey was elected general of the first brigade; on the 17th, Milton K. Alexander was elected general of the second; and on the 18th, James D. Henry was elected general of the third. Thus organized, these troops were received into the service of the United States by General Atkinson, who was present and commanded them. The first numbered one thousand and one men; the second, nine hundred and fifty-nine; and the third, one thousand two hundred and thirty-two. I procured General Atkinson to make Judge Brown, who was one of the judges of the supreme court, one of his aids, so as to establish a friendly feeling between the regular officers and those of the volunteers.

I appointed my staff. My two aids were Alexander F. Grant, of Gallatin County, and Benjamin F. Hickman, of Franklin County. These two gentlemen were talented and agreeable officers, and performed their duties, which were at times laborious, with efficiency. I appointed T. W. Smith, judge of the supreme court, adjutant-general; James Turney, paymaster-general; and Enoch C. March, quartermaster-general. My staff were distinguished and efficient gentlemen. They were all recognized by the government, and paid.

On the 12th of June I ordered a battalion to be organized, and to elect their officers, to guard the frontiers between the


Mississippi and Peoria, on the north of Illinois River. Samuel Bogart was elected major of the battalion. I ordered forts to be erected on the frontiers from the Mississippi to Chicago. Capts. Eads and Dorsey, with their companies, were taken into service to defend the frontiers.

On the 19th of June, I organized the companies of Buckmaster, Payne, and Walker into a battalion, and appointed Col. Nathaniel Buckmaster, major, to command it. I ordered him to guard the frontiers between Ottawa and Chicago. He performed his service to the satisfaction of the public. I also authorized Major Bailey to take command of a battalion of mounted men and guard Chicago and vicinity during the war. He performed his duty to the entire satisfaction of the public. Many of the frontier inhabitants who were driven into Chicago, without support, found relief from the public stores by the benevolence of Major Bailey.

On the 16th of June, Col. John Dement was elected major of a spy-battalion, and attached to the brigade of Gen. Posey. On the 17th, Gen. Atkinson ordered him to march to Dixon with his battalion, and report himself to Col. Taylor. His command consisted of three companies, whose captains were Dobbins, Bowman, and Stephenson. These companies were citizens of the counties of Franklin, Jefferson, and Marion. The staff-officers of Major Dement were — Lieut.-Gov. Anderson, adjutant; Gov. Z. Casey, regimental-paymaster; and Col. S. Hicks, quartermaster. Thus officered and organized, Major Dement was ordered from Fort Wilburn, by the Bureau settlement, to Fort Dixon, and there report to Col. Taylor. With these orders, Major Dement took up the line of march in the Black-Hawk war.

This battalion was composed of most excellent material. The officers were many of them among the most conspicuous and worthy characters in the State, and the rank and file were intelligent, hardy, and patriotic citizens. Their only misfortune was the want of discipline and organization, without which a military corps cannot act with efficiency.

On the march of this battalion to the Bureau settlement night overtook them in a large prairie, and there they camped in it. A Sentinel fired his gun, as he said, at an Indian who had a piece of fire in his hand. The report of his gun gave the alarm and all were aroused to arms. After some time preparing for the enemy, who did not approach, a party took the sentinel to the place where he said he saw the Indian with a torch of fire in his hand, and the sentinel exclaimed "there the Indian is again, with the same fire in his hand!" but lo and behold, it was the moon just rising above the horizon that the sentinel supposed was an Indian with a torch in his hand. At times the imagination will work wonders. This mistake of the sentinel afforded the volunteers much merriment.


Major Dement then marched to Fort Dixon and reported himself to Col. Z. Taylor. This officer ordered the battalion to Kellog's Grove. They reached there on Saturday night, and enjoyed the next Sabbath in hunting. On the second night after they arrived at the Grove, Mr. Funk, of McLean County, came to the fort from the lead mines about two o'clock at night and informed Maj. Dement that a large trail of two hundred and fifty or three hundred Indians was seen passing south-west, near them, and that a large force of the enemy was probably in his neighborhood. This information gave Maj. Dement much concern and responsibility. He had but about one hundred and fifty men, untrained, undrilled, and unaccustomed to war, but as brave men as ever breathed the breath of life. Most of his battalion, and all the superior officers, were Tennesseeans, where the virtue of courage and bravery is as much cultivated and respected as in any country on the globe. Maj. Dement called a council of officers, in the night, and they decided that the major, with fifty picked men, should march out in the morning and reconnoitre the trail and country. The rest of the battalion was to remain in the fort, in readiness for action if necessary. This fort was an oblong log-house, containing three rooms, and made of large logs; the doors were made of strong material; and a good well of water was in the yard. Some stables and other buildings were built near the main cabin. Some six or eight of the fifty volunteers who were going with the major started in advance of him, on good horses, and had approached the prairie about one hundred and fifty yards from the fort. Just as the major and Gov. Casey were mounting their horses, an express came from the advance party informing the major that some three or four Indians were seen in the prairie. This information was like an electric spark: it put the rank and file of the battalion into a frenzy to shoot and kill them; but the officers were well convinced that they were placed there to decoy the whites into an ambuscade, which turned out to be lamentably true. At this time, the whole battalion mounted their horses against orders and hurried to the scene of action. Five men, Black and four others, who had no horses, also started out to see the fight, or chase of the Indians, but they never returned.

Major Dement and most of the officers galloped out with the throng to prevent their men from chasing the Indians, who, of course, fled as soon as the whites approached them. Many of the volunteers in the confusion mistook the intention of the major and the other officers, and supposed that they were chasing the Indians to kill them. The battalion was in the utmost confusion, not regarding the commands of the officers in any manner whatever.

The retreating Indians ran near a ravine in the prairie, which


was filled with brush and bushes to conceal Black Hawk, his generals, and warriors, to the number of two hundred and fifty or three hundred. No military talents could have planned this stratagem better than those bookless savages did. The running whooping, and hallooing volunteers were literally scattered over the battle-field, but mostly near this hollow in the prairie. They acted like they were chasing a wolf on the snow. Major Dement was exceedingly active in trying to arrest his men, as he knew almost certainly they were running into danger and destruction. All of a sudden, Black Hawk and his warriors emerged from their concealment, on the confused troops, and raised the war-whoop from the mouths of two or three hundred naked Indians. The enemy had prepared themselves for battle by taking their clothes off. They were naked in battle.

As soon as this army of furious, naked Indians made the attack on the confused volunteers, the whites commenced a retreat to the fort with equal or greater speed than they exerted in the pursuit of the Indians. Maj. Dement and the other officers made the utmost exertions to fight the Indians and to bring off the troops in good order, but their efforts were unavailable. A sudden surprise seized the corps, and no order or subordination could be observed among them. The Indians considered that they had the advantage in numbers and stratagem, and they rushed on with the fury of demons.

The instinct of preservation made the volunteers shape their course for the fort, and as soon as Maj. Dement would rally a few of his soldiers to make a stand against the enemy, the Indians would attempt to cut them off from the fort. Seeing this, the power of the officers over their men could not restrain them from seeking protection in the log-cabin.

Governor Casey made a rally with a considerable number of the volunteers at the woods, but the enemy attempting to outflank them and cut them off from the fort made the soldiers again flee for refuge to the log-house. Gov. Casey's horse was wounded and almost threw him off. When the horsemen left those on foot, the five men without the means of escape were killed. The horse of Trammel Ewing was shot dead from under him, and himself wounded; but he escaped on foot.

The Indians and volunteers rushed with desperate violence through the timber, tree-tops, brush, logs, and such obstacles as presented themselves, until they reached a log-house of which a fort was made.

The soldiers dismounted in great haste, and entered the fort with the Indians at their heels. When the volunteers occupied the house the enemy was shy in approaching the premises, but let loose all their vengeance by killing the horses. Forty-seven horses were shot dead in the yard of the fort, and some few more on the field of battle. The horse of Governor Casey was


wounded in the head before the governor dismounted from him at the fort.

The enemy was so furious in this battle, and rushed so near the fort, that seven of their number were killed. They shot into the house through the crevices and wounded several men, but killed none. Three different bullets touched the person of the major, but none injured him. One ball passed through his hat and cut the hair on the top of his head.

When the battle had subsided to some degree around the fort, Major Dement dispatched five men on good horses to Dixon, fifty miles or more, for relief, as it was supposed the Indians would make an attack on the log-house at night. The same Ewing who was wounded in the thigh was one of the express. This express started about eight o'clock in the morning.

When the Indians withdrew, sentinels were put out and the fort prepared for a night-attack. The logs of the house were large and solid, so that they could withstand the balls of the enemy. The only concern was fire The major presumed the Indians would attempt to burn the fort. The premises presented a horrid spectacle with almost fifty horses lying dead in the yard and a number of Indians also lying dead a little farther off. The horses, having been killed with poisoned arrows, swelled horribly. One hundred and fifty or more wet blankets were placed on the top of the house to save it from fire. Barrels of water were also provided for the occasion. But toward sundown relief came. Gen. Posey arrived with his brigade. The express and brigade together travelled one hundred miles between eight o'clock and sundown. Some time was taken to get the brigade started.

About a quarter of a mile from the fort the Indians yelled, hallooed, and shouted war-songs over the dead bodies of the white men they had killed, and mangled their bodies in true Indian style.

Just as Posey's brigade reached the fort, three Indian spies on horseback were seen to emerge from the thickets in different places, who had been watching the fort to see if any relief would arrive or not; and it is supposed if none had come, the fort would have been attacked at night, but the arrival of Gen. Posey prevented it. In the morning early, after the arrival of Posey's brigade, a large grave was dug with tomakawks and knives, and in it were buried the remains of the five men killed on the field of battle. Their lone grave is in the prairie, not far from the grove.

About two miles from the fort the Indians held a council, and seemed to have been some time in this convention, perhaps waiting to see whether they would make a night-assault on the fort.


After burying the dead in this hasty manner, Gen. Posey started in pursuit of the enemy, but soon found out that the Indians had scattered so the trail could not be followed, and the pursuit was abandoned. Thus ended this military operation, in which the officers and privates acted with gallantry and bravery; but the corps was under no discipline or subordination. There was the error.


Army March to Dixon. — Posey's Brigade Ordered to Fort Hamilton. — Alexander's toward the Mississippi. — Atkinson, Regulars and Volunteers March up Rock River. — Find No Indians. — Army Disperse for Provisions.

THE army on the frontier was strong, brave, and efficient. The infantry of the regular army were five or six hundred in numbers, and were commanded by many of the most distinguished officers in the United States' army. Gen. Atkinson was the commander-in-chief, and under him were Taylor, Harney, Riley, and many other distinguished and gallant officers. Maj. Riley was the Bayard of the army — sans peur et sans reproche.

Among the volunteers were many of the most distinguished men in the State, and many that held the highest offices in the state government. The volunteers amounted to two or three thousand strong. Never in America existed better material to make a brave and efficient army than composed the volunteer corps in this campaign.

Gen. Atkinson ordered Gen. Alexander with his brigade to march to the region of country between Dixon, Galena, and the Mississippi, to guard the frontiers and prevent the straggling Indians from the west side of the Mississippi from joining Black Hawk. He also ordered the brigade of Gen. Posey to Fort Hamilton. He commanded in person the brigade under Gen. Henry, and the regulars, and marched them from Fort Wilburn to Dixon for military stores. I marched with General Atkinson to Dixon, and was there when the messengers reached him from Major Dement at Kellog's Grove.

While we were at Dixon, Mr. George E. Walker, the captain commanding seventy or eighty Pottawatomie Indians, with their chiefs Caldwell, Shabonee, and Wapello with them, came to Gen. Atkinson and desired some protection of the army to save them from the fury of Black Hawk, as they had joined the Americans, which would cause great anger in the breast of the old Sac warrior. Col. Fry was sent with his regiment to protect our Indian allies. We supposed it was better to receive


the Indians into service, as perhaps if we did not they would fight on the other side.

With a strong regular force and cannon, and the brigade under the immediate command of Gen. Henry, Gen. Atkinson, and myself and staff commenced the march from Dixon up Rock River in pursuit of the enemy. This march was continued throughout the region of country on Rock River for sixty or eighty miles above Dixon for a long time without reaching the hostile Indians.

On the 4th of July the main army lay on the banks of Lake Koshkonong, which is an enlargement of Rock River, and experienced a melancholy and sadness of feeling indescribable. The provisions wasting away — almost gone — and the enemy not chastised. Two or three thousand fine soldiers under arms and nothing done, caused reflections in the breasts of the officers, and many privates, that were extremely mortifying and painful. But what could be done? We were almost hunting a shadow.

Not finding Black Hawk, the army moved higher up the river and were in the midst of the enemy, but the Indians were not in a body so as to chastise them. The general fortified our camp every night to guard against a night-attack. At one of these camps a man was wounded by accident, but not mortally. At another encampment, Capt. Dunn, of Gen. Posey's brigade, was wounded by a sentinel, supposed to be mortal, but he recovered. In this section of the country, the brigades of Generals Posey and Alexander joined us about the 7th of July, together with Gen. Dodge and his troops.

After various marches, and waiting the report of scouts, the whole army lay at a stream called Whitewater, a branch of Rock River, and after sun-up two Indians shot across the stream at a regular soldier who was fishing. I was in my tent, with my staff, near the scene, and we supposed the guns were discharged by accident. The soldier was wounded, but not mortally. The Indians dashed off in a moment and could not be reached. We marched and countermarched, but found no enemy. On the 8th, the one-eyed Winnebago-chief Decori told Gen. Atkinson that Black Hawk was lower down the river, and the army marched down by the counsel of this wicked savage who stated an untruth to save Black Hawk. This movement, on the information of the one-eyed chief, delayed us one or two days. If we had pushed on up the river, by forced marches for a day or two, the Indians would have been reached and the war ended. Gen. Atkinson would not move without the regulars, with the cannon, and they marched so slow that the Indians could not be overtaken.

On the 10th of July, in the midst of a considerable wilderness, the provisions were exhausted, and the army forced to


abandon the pursuit of the enemy for a short time. Seeing the difficulties to reach the enemy, and knowing the extreme uncertainty of ever reaching Black Hawk by these slow movements, caused most of the army to believe we would never overtake the enemy. This condition of affairs forced on all reflecting men much mortification, and regret that this campaign also would do nothing. Under these circumstances, a great many worthy and respectable individuals, who were not particularly operative in the service, returned to their homes. My staff and myself left the army at the burnt village, on Rock River, above Lake Koshkonong, and returned by Galena to the frontiers and home.

When I reached Galena, the Indian panic was still raging with the people there, and I was compelled to order out more troops to protect the citizens — although the militia of the whole country was in service. The attack of Apple-Creek Fort by the Indians made the citizens of Galena fear a similar assault on their town, and they had a large fort erected for defence.

At the upper end of the lower rapids of the Mississippi, where Nauvoo now stands, Capt. White had a company organized for defence.

I saw and heard reports from the frontiers between the Mississippi at the Yellow Banks and Chicago, on the north of the Illinois River, that the troops were doing their duty, and I returned to my residence in Belleville.

I received dispatches from Washington City highly approving my course in the war, and also authority from President Jackson to hold treaties with the Indians. General Scott was also appointed commissioner to conclude treaties, and we were authorized to act together.

On the 10th of July, the day the army disbanded for provisions, Gen. Scott, with a large force of the regular army, arrived from the Atlantic seaboard at Chicago and landed his troops. The Asiatic cholera appeared in his army on the route, and many died of the disease.

The Black-Hawk war assumed such an importance that the Government at Washington ordered Gen. Scott and a large regular army on the frontiers. The general, with that military efficiency and capacity for which he is so celebrated, conveyed a regiment of troops from Old Point Comfort, in Virginia, to Chicago, in eleven days, which was considered an extraordinary quick passage; but at this day, the same could be performed in about thirty hours. Some of the troops who had been with Gen. Scott were in the battle of the "Bad Axe," under Gen. Brady, but the general himself did not assume the command during the campaign.

On my way to the frontiers, I heard of the chastisement of the Indians, which closed the war.


Chapter LXXXIX.

Sketch of the Life and Character of James D. Henry. — The Horse Stampede.

JAMES DOUGHERTY HENRY immigrated to Illinois and settled in Edwardsville in the year 1822. He was a native of Pennsylvania, and was born and raised in an humble and obscure condition in life.

When he located in Edwardsville, he was poor, obscure, and without a friend or acquaintance in the State. He was a mechanic, and worked at his trade for a support. He had been raised to manhood with a very limited education — barely able to read and write. At Edwardsville, when he was, I presume, twenty-one years of age, he, for the first time, entered on the study of arithmetic, and studied at a night-school in Edwardsville with a teacher, William Barrett, whose habits would not conform to the rules of a temperance society. Henry was not quick to comprehend the rules in mathematics, but labored on incessantly until he understood well the principles of the science in all its branches. He became, at last, a passable scholar in this science.

The person of Gen. Henry was large, six feet high, proportionably formed, and possessed a manly and dignified bearing. He was exceedingly modest and retiring until his passions were aroused, and then he showed an intensity of feeling and an iron will which was irresistible so far as he had the power to act. In company he was generally taciturn, and mostly appeared to disregard the charms of society, but seemed to be moody and melancholy, reflecting on the misfortunes of himself, which he could not relieve. At long intervals he indulged in frolics, and then, if his anger was excited, he was reckless and desperate. He knew and cared as little of danger and death as a marble statue. The fear of nothing, except his Maker, ever entered his breast. It appeared that he cared not much for life, but all for honor. His mother was a native of Scotland, and her religious notions, and books of Calvinism, impressed her son considerably with predestination. He reflected much on these melancholy and gloomy subjects, which had an effect on his character. He possessed a diffidence, or extreme sensibility, that prevented him from ever appearing in the society of ladies. At the close of the Black-Hawk war, the citizens of Springfield (his residence) gave him a splendid party in honor of his services in that war, and at it he never once appeared in the apartments where the ladies presided. This singular trait of character was so riveted on him that when he died, in New Orleans,


on the 4th of March, 1834, among strangers, he never informed any one that he was Gen. Henry, of the Black-Hawk war. It was discovered after his death at the hotel where he died.

The paternity of Gen. Henry was not known to many besides himself. It was, no doubt, this subject that his sensitive soul could neither forget or forgive that preyed heavily on his mind and at last brought him to a premature grave. His father called to see him at Edwardsville, but his son refused to see him on account of the situation in society in which the son was compelled to exist by the act of the father.

He entered into the mercantile business in Edwardsville, and moved to Springfield in 1826. He was elected sheriff of Sangamon County for several terms, and performed the duties of his office with sound judgment and strict integrity. I became well acquainted with him, and knew his merit. Under these circumstances, I appointed him one of my aids when I was elected governor.

At the Burnt Village, on the Whitewater branch of Rock River, on the 10th of July, as heretofore stated, Gen. Atkinson was forced to disperse the army for subsistence. The brigades of Henry and Alexander, and the battalion of Maj. Dodge, were ordered to Fort Winnebago for provisions. This fort was situated at the Portage, between the Fox River of Lake Michigan and the Wisconsin River, and was about one hundred miles from the Burnt Village. Col. John Ewing with his regiment were ordered to Dixon with Capt. Dunn. Gen. Posey and brigade were sent to Fort Hamilton for supplies, and to guard the northern frontiers. Gen. Atkinson with the regular army went down Rock River to Koshkonong Lake, and erected there a small fort.

The first night the army camped at Fort Winnebago they experienced a calamity worse than an ordinary battle with the Indians. About a thousand horses were grazing near the encampment, and it is supposed that some thieving Indians were trying to steal some of the horses, which caused a general, most furious, and dangerous stampede among the quadrupeds. The soldiers being tired, were fast asleep in their tents, which were pitched near one another, mostly not more than three feet apart. It is understood by the reader that in these stampedes the horses are scared until they are crazy, and run at the top of their speed over any opposing obstacle they are able to surmount. One thousand horses running at once, with race-horse speed, make not only appalling noise worse than a tornado, but there is absolute danger in being tramped to death in the furious race. The horses behind forced those before onward, so that if the foremost horses wished to stop, or to divert their course, they cannot do it.

The first flight of the horses ran with the violence and fury


of a tempest, pell-mell over the camp of the troops, knocking down the tents into the faces of the sleeping men, and battering into the ground the arms, tent-poles, men, and all articles in the camp. The picket-guard, sentinels, and officers-of-the-day, all entered the camp with the horses, and all supposed it was an attack of the Indians. Many of the men were bruised and crippled, and almost unable to stir. The bugles and drums sounded to arms, and those who were able, were in the utmost confusion in the dark to obtain their arms, which had been so scattered, and many broken by the horses. This was a second edition to the confusion at the Tower of Babel, only this at Fort Winnebago caused more bruised bodies.

The stampede took a northern direction, and the Wisconsin River stopped their race in that course but not their fury. The horses then changed their direction back, and ran the second time directly over the camp. The soldiers by this time were awakened and attempted to stop the crazy animals, but only a few were arrested from this dangerous stampede.

It is supposed that most of the horses must have run thirty miles in this race, which did the service much injury at this crisis. It required great trouble to find the horses, and many were never found. The trail the army made to the fort was followed back fifty miles in search of the lost horses. Many of the horses were crippled, and all injured and fatigued by the stampede.

Chapter XC.

Gen. Henry, in Violation of Orders, Decides to March in Pursuit of the Indians. — Puts Down a Disturbance Among the Volunteers. — Found the Trail of Black Hawk. — Left the Heavy Baggage.

Two days were occupied at Fort Winnebago in regaining the lost horses, recruiting the army, and drawing provisions for twelve days. During that time certain information was received of the encampment of Black Hawk and his band.

This fort was in the midst of the Winnebago Indians, and those Indians were in numbers about the fort, and knew well the location of Black Hawk. A half-breed, a man of some talents, Poquette, was one on whom the whites relied, and he gave the information of the residence of the enemy.

Black Hawk and band were then encamped at Cranberry Lake, on Rock River, forty or fifty miles above Fort Koshkonong, where Gen. Atkinson was camped. No doubt Black Hawk had spies out, and when Gen. Henry moved toward them they attempted to escape across the Mississippi.

On receiving this information, Gen. Henry convened all the


officers, including the captains, and held a council of war. It was the unanimous conclusion of the officers that it was their duty to disregard the orders of Gen. Atkinson, and that he would approve of their doing so if he knew the facts. It was certain that Black Hawk and his band would escape if the army returned to Gen. Atkinson, almost a hundred miles from Fort Winnebago. The only possible opportunity to close the war with honor and service to the country was to march directly on the enemy. It was agreed in council that the country required the chastisement of the Indians; that an example must be made to keep the surrounding tribes in peace with the whites, and that if this opportunity was abandoned the whole campaign would be defeated. The General Government had expended eight or ten millions of dollars, and no beneficial result would be experienced by the war.

At twelve o'clock on the 15th July, was the time appointed to march from Fort Winnebago in pursuit of the enemy, but the soldiers in the brigade of Gen. Alexander strongly remonstrated against disobeying the orders of Gen. Atkinson and marching with Gen. Henry. The officers of that brigade did not coerce the men, and that brigade marched back to Gen. Atkinson at Lake Koshkonong, on Rock River. Some soldiers and some of the officers in the brigade of Gen. Henry became disaffected by their intercourse with the brigade of Gen. Alexander, and did not want to march with the general against the Indians. The brigade of Henry was now reduced to about five or six hundred strong, and one-third of them were without horses.

About this time, Capt. Craig, from Galena and the vicinity, reached Fort Winnebago with a fine company of mounted-men, and joined the battalion of Gen. Dodge, which made his force number one hundred and twenty men. This addition put to rest all murmuring in his corps as to their marching with Gen. Henry in search of the enemy.

Many of the officers, also, of the brigade of Gen. Henry were not inclined to march with their general, and all the officers of the regiment of Col. Fry, except the gallant colonel himself, signed a remonstrance to Gen. Henry against the violation of orders and marching with him. This paper was presented to the general by the lieutenant-colonel of the regiment. This was the crisis — the governing pivot of the whole campaign — and Gen. Henry was equal to the emergency. This crisis showed Gen. Henry to be an extraordinary man. One brigade had mutinied, and decided to return to Atkinson; the privates in his own brigade at the brink of open mutiny, and the officers of one regiment, all but the colonel himself, had signed a document dissenting from his order. Thus was left this gallant officer almost alone to oppose the symptoms of open mutiny of


two brigades. His situation, and determined firmness, forcibly reminds us of the condition of Gen. Jackson in his military campaigns against the Southern Indians. The determined courage and firmness of the two generals are similar and striking. Jackson posting himself on a bridge, and with a pistol in hand defying the troops to pass the bridge while he was alive, and Henry forcing the brigade to pursue the Indians.

In this crisis as well as in all others Henry was cool and reflecting, possessing not the least bluster or parade. He reflected thoroughly on what was right, and when he took a stand he was immovable. When he knew that he was right, he possessed the firmness and iron-will to maintain his position against all earthly power, so far as his strength was able. This campaign showed Henry to be an extraordinary man, such as in ages may not again appear on the public stage. He hesitated not a moment, but ordered all of the officers signing this remonstrance to be put under arrest, and to be marched off to Gen. Atkinson under the guard of Col. Collins and his regiment. This efficient and decided order from a man whom they knew had the moral and physical courage to execute it, made the officers reflect, doubt, and finally to repent. The colonel presenting the shameful paper denied knowing the contents of it. All the officers, by the prompt and decisive course of Gen. Henry, came to a sense of their duty, and performed it nobly during the balance of the campaign.

The character of Gen. Henry was such that the officers and soldiers loved as well as obeyed him. He was exceedingly kind and attentive to the comforts of his brigade, and nourished the sick, and supplied the wants of all with everything that was in his power.

On the 15th of July, the brigade was reviewed, and all inefficiency of men or material was discharged, and the troops marched with honor and duty to guide them to victory. Poquette, the half-breed, and a Winnebago chief, "the White Pawnee," were selected for guides to the camp of Black Hawk and band.

The army marched through a marshy and swampy country, which very much impeded their progress. At every swamp, horses were lost in the mud and left to die. Toward the close of the three days' march, the trail of Black Hawk and his band was discovered. This information changed the ordinary march of the army into a chase, which will be related in the next chapter.

On the second day's march, the spies seized two unarmed Indians, who said they were Winnebagos; but the white spies considered them Sac Indians, and also spies of Black Hawk. With this impression, the Indians were confined with the army.


Chapter XCI.

Gen. Henry and Major Dodge, with their Respective Troops, in Hot Chase of Black Hawk and Band. — Thunder Storm. — The Four Lakes. — Battle of Wisconsin.

ON the third day's march from Fort Winnebago, the army met three Winnebago Indians, who gave information that Black Hawk and his war party of Indians were camped high up Rock River, at the Cranberry Lake. On receiving this information a council of officers decided to move against the Indians next morning, and, in the meantime, Dr. Merryman, of Springfield and Mr. Woodbridge, of Wisconsin, with an Indian guide, a chief called Little Thunder, were dispatched as messengers to Gen. Atkinson to apprise the general of the movements of the volunteers.

The express, after travelling about eight miles, struck the large and fresh trail of Black Hawk and band leaving Rock River and making toward the four lakes, and across the Wisconsin and Mississippi Rivers, for safety. As soon as Little Thunder saw the trail a panic seized him, and he returned with all possible speed to the volunteers. He gave the information to the two Indians and the army before Merryman and Woodbridge reached the troops. The country was so swampy and filled with thickets that the messengers were compelled also to return to the brigade. But one of the express was fired on in the dark by a sentinel and was near being hit by the bullet.

In the confusion of the army, the two Indians, the prisoners and spies, made their escape, but were recaptured.

Major McConnell had been out about dark reconnoitering, some distance from the main army, with another person, and had found the Indian trail of Black Hawk. The individual returned alone to the army and reported the fact. Just at dark — McConnell was still reconnoitering — two Indians came through some brushwood within ten yards of him, and one of them gave an Indian whoop, evidently showing great alarm. McConnell supposed the Indians were the enemy, and was about shooting when one of them cried out, in tolerable English, "Good Indian, me! good Winnebago!" McConnell immediately discovered that they were the two prisoners who had been marching with the army. He captured them, and tied their hands behind their backs and marched them to the camp. In this enterprise with the Indians, and throughout the whole campaign, Major McConnell displayed efficiency and courage as a soldier and an officer, which won for him the approbation of the whole army.


The Indian prisoners confessed their guilt that they were spies from Black Hawk. They expected to be shot, but the general did not proclaim their guilt and they were spared. The general acted with humanity, as the army was then nearly on the Indian trail, and the spies could do no injury to the whites, and to destroy two deluded, unarmed human beings, after their having been prisoners for some time, seemed to be a cruel act. The general was compelled to exercise much care over the Indians or some volunteer might have shot them if the fact had been known.

On the 19th of July, early in the morning, five baggage-wagons, camp-equipage, and all heavy, cumbersome articles were piled up and left, so that the army might make speedy and forced marches to overtake the enemy. For some miles the travel was exceedingly bad, crossing swamps and the worst thickets, but the large fresh trail of the Indians gave life and animation to the Americans. Gen. Dodge acting as major, and Col. Ewing acting also as major, composed the spy-corps or vanguard of the army. It is supposed the army marched nearly fifty miles this day, and the Indian trail they followed became fresher, and was strewed with much property and trinkets of the Indians that they had lost or threw away to hasten their march.

Toward evening, there commenced a terrific thunder storm, with torrents of rain, which poured down on the army in floods, and drenched them for many hours. The storm continued nearly all night until toward day, which prevented the soldiers from making any fire or cooking any food for their support. The army were without tents, and lay on the ground covered with water, and themselves without covering, as many of the soldiers had left their blankets in the general deposit of their property made in the morning.

Early in the morning, the whole army, although it was cold and chilly, started on the trail, and pursued it with increased vigor. The scouts of Gen. Henry captured an Indian, and by him the general was informed that the main body of the Indians was not far ahead of the army.

On receiving this information, the order of battle was formed by Gen. Henry, and the troops marched in that order, prepared for an engagement at any moment.

Gen. Dodge and Gen. Ewing, each commanding a battalion of men, were placed in front to bring on the battle, and Col. Fry, with his regiment on the right, Col. Jones on the left, and Col. Collins in the centre. In this order the army marched, expecting and hoping to overtake the enemy the same evening, but they did not. About sunset, the army reached the first of the four lakes, and Gen. Henry inquired of his guides, Poquette and the White Pawnee, if the army could, in the night,


march through the bad swamps and brush near the lakes. The answer was they could not. Next day, it was found to be true, what the guides had reported as to the difficulty of marching around the lakes. The retreating Indians searched for the worst roads.

On one of the four lakes the army camped, and the men cooked a supper, which was about the first regular meal they ate in travelling one hundred miles from Rock River, where they first struck the Indian trail.

By the time it was light the whole army were on the Indian trail, and in hot pursuit. Marching about five miles, a spy of the enemy was killed, and a certain Dr. Phillio brutally scalped the Indian, when another white man had killed him. Two more spies who were watching the progress of the army were also killed. This day's march, or rather race, was very exciting. The enemy only a few miles ahead escaping for life, and the army exerting all their energies to overtake them. The trail was literally strewed with Indian property and trinkets, and sometimes a horse of the enemy gave out and lay dead on the trail. At the camps of the enemy they were compelled to kill a horse at times to eat, as they were literally starving.

On the forced march on the 21st, forty horses or more gave out and were left. About three o'clock the spies reported that the enemy were reaching the bluffs of the Wisconsin River, and might make a save retreat over the river. This report urged on the army with greater speed, and the rear guard of the enemy, or their spies, frequently commenced firing to gain time, so that the main body of the Indians could cross the river. The army formed twice for battle, and the Indians would give way; but on the third attack of the Indian spies, the white scouts drove the Indians to the main body of the enemy, who had reached tolerably heavy timber, and were waiting to give the Americans battle. In an instant, the volunteers dismounted, ordering every tenth man to hold horses, and were formed in the same order of battle as they had been the day previous, except that Col. Fry's regiment made the reserve, and to prevent the enemy from turning the flanks of the Americans. The Indians came rushing with great fury, shouts and yells, on the Americans, and the whites also, with noise and whooping at the top of their voices, charged also with vigor on the approaching enemy. The brave and gallant leaders, Col. Dodge and Col. Ewing, of their respective corps made a gallant onset, and with the equally brave and courageous Colonels Jones and Collins and their regiments, drove the enemy back. In the heat of the battle, Col. Fry and regiment were ordered to charge, with Col. Dodge, the enemy who had concentrated in heavy masses in front of Major Dodge. The charge was made with gallantry and efficiency. The enemy was driven into the lowlands of the Wisconsin


River, where the mud, high grass, and the approach of night, rendered it difficult and imprudent to pursue them any farther. On the margin of the river was a dense forest, where the Indians might take shelter and destroy many of the Americans in a charge into the timber. Under these circumstances, General Henry wisely sounded a retreat about dark.

This was a disastrous battle for the Indians, as it was reported that about sixty-eight of them were killed, and many wounded. Of the Americans, only one man, Mr. Short, of Randolph County, was killed, and eight wounded.

During part of the battle, an Indian general, supposed to be Napope, posted himself (riding a white pony) on a high knoll near the Indian warriors, and gave commands, in a loud and thundering voice, that could be heard distinctly amid the roar of the fire-arms and the din of battle. I have heard it often remarked that he possessed the loudest voice of all mortal men, but as soon as the enemy commenced to retreat, he also left his post and was silent.

This battle was conducted with wisdom and judgment by Gen. Henry, and was the first and decided victory obtained by the Americans over the enemy. Never before could Black Hawk and his band be reached by the army, but at the heights of Wisconsin the enemy was severely chastised. It became necessary to execute this severe punishment on the recreant band of Black Hawk, not only for their benefit, but to establish peace and harmony among the Indians inhabiting our extended borders.

The American troops acted the part of brave and disciplined soldiers, each man doing his duty without a solitary exception. And too much praise cannot be given the officers. Gen. Dodge and Gen. Ewing, each acting as majors, led the van of the army, and gallantly sustained the first fire of the enemy. Cols. Fry, Jones, and Collins, with their respective regiments, performed well their duty to the satisfaction of the general and country. Col. Jones had his horse shot under him. He procured another and acted the part of a gallant soldier, as the other officers did also through all the various scenes of the battle. The staff-officers, Majors Murray McConnell, John A. Wakefield, and others, were always in the thickest of the battle doing their duty. Major McConnell was on horseback, and was a conspicuous object for the Indian rifles. He saw an Indian fire his gun at him, and the ball passed through his clothes touching his breast.

Although Gen. Henry was young and inexperienced in battle, yet he acted the part of a consumate commander in this engagement. He possessed such mastery over the troops that his command moved the brigade in the battle as a unit.

The conduct of Gen. Henry in the Black-Hawk war rendered


him the most popular man in Illinois. He could have been elected to any office in the gift of the people. His health and vigor of constitution had been before robust and good, but the hardships and fatigue of the war wasted away his system, and he died at New Orleans of the consumption, as before stated. He left not a human being related to him in the State, but his character remains dear to the people of Illinois. His fame as the hero of the Black-Hawk war will be long revered and respected by the people of his adopted State.

At the commencement of the action, all the Winnebagos, including Poquette and Little Thunder escaped, and left the Americans in the wilderness without knowing where to go for provisions. The army was without support, and camped in an unknown country.

On the 23d, some Indians came to the camp and guided the army to the Blue Mounds in Wisconsin. After two days' march, the army reached their destination and found plenty of provisions.

At the Blue Mounds, Gens. Atkinson, Posey, and Alexander were all assembled, with four hundred and fifty regular troops, under the command of Gen. Brady, and a greatly diminished force of the volunteers. Gen. Posey's brigade contained not more than two hundred men; Alexander's and Henry's not many more. All the three brigades amounted to about the force of one did when they were organized at Ottawa, some months previous.

The night after the battle of the 21st instant, the same warrior who, on a white horse, commanded the Indians, Napope, took a stand on a high hill near the American camp, and about three o'clock in the morning he spoke in the Winnebago tongue, in a loud shrill voice, which, in the calm of the night, vibrated from hill to hill. Not one in the American army understood the language — the Winnebagos having left — but the volunteers supposed it was the same commander marshalling his warriors to give battle again. Under this impression, General Henry had his troops all paraded and ready for a night-attack. He had before taken the precaution to put out strong guards, and prepare for battle at night.

This Indian warrior ceased his harangue toward daylight and disappeared. It was a matter of surprise with the army what could be the meaning of this loud voice so long uttered at this time of night, so near the American camp. After the battle of the Bad Axe, on the Mississippi, it was explained. It was Napope suing for peace. He supposed there were Winnebagos in the camp, and would inform the Americans what he said. He said the band under Black Hawk sued for peace; that they were not able to fight the Americans; they were worn down and starving, and would retire to the west side of the


Mississippi, and remain hereafter in peace with the whites. If this speech had been understood, it might have closed the war without further bloodshed.

Some disagreeable feelings arose between the officers of the regular army and the volunteers, and it was supposed it was produced by Gen. Henry violating his orders and gaining the victory over the enemy without the co-operation of the regular army.

At the Blue Mound, Gen. Atkinson assumed the command and issued three days' provision to the army. It was the order of the general to pursue the Indians.

Chapter XCII.

The Army Cross the Wisconsin River at Helena. — Order of March. — Bad Roads. — In a Few Days they Reach the Mississippi. — Battle of the Bad Axe. — Steamboat Black Warrior Fires on the Indians. — The War Closed.

ON the 26th of July, all the forces, regulars and volunteers, appeared at Helena, a deserted village on the Wisconsin River, and there made rafts to cross the stream. The Wisconsin at this point is almost as wide as the Mississippi, but the whole army was rafted over it, wagons and all, in safety in not much more than a day.

The line of march was taken up on the 28th, in pursuit of the old enemy, and the Indian trail reached in marching about five miles.

The regular officers marching in this expedition were Gen. Atkinson, commanding; Gen. Brady, Cols. Taylor, Morgan, and Riley, and many others. The volunteer officers were Generals Henry, Alexander, and Posey; Colonels Fry, Jones, Collins, Archer, and many others; Majors Dodge and Ewing. The staff-officers were numerous — Col. E. C. March, and Majors McConnell, Wakefield, Merriman, and many others, of the volunteers. Majors Johnson and Anderson were regular officers, and of the staff of Gen. Atkinson.

Gen. Atkinson, in the march, ordered Major Dodge and battalion in front; then came the regulars; then Gen. Posey; then Gen. Alexander, and Gen. Henry in the rear, to take charge of the baggage. The position given Gen. Henry was so manifestly wrong that all the army noticed it, and it was considered not only an insult to Gen. Henry, but to his brigade and the State of Illinois. It has always been my opinion, that if I had been in this expedition my position would have enabled me to preserve peace and friendly feelings in the army.

In this order the army marched over the worst roads


imaginable — swamps, high mountains, brambles, and briars — for many days. The baggage-wagons and almost all of the heavy articles were left on the route, and many horses also gave out and were abandoned. It was truly sorrowful, as I was often informed, to see on the Indian trail the signs of distress and misery of the fleeing enemy. Many wounded Indians died and were left on the trail. Frequently was seen the places where horses had been killed and eaten by the Indians to save life, and much of the valuables and articles held in the highest estimation by the Indians were lost or thrown away in their flight.

When the army reached the Mississippi Bluff, Black Hawk and about twenty of his warriors gave a kind of feint battle to the army to decoy the Americans from the main body of the Indians. The order of march was continued as heretofore, which placed Major Dodge in front, then the regulars, then Alexander's and Posey's brigades, and Gen. Henry in the rear with the baggage. Black Hawk and his small party fled up the river bluff, while the main body of the Indians marched directly west across the bottom to the Mississippi, near the mouth of a stream known as the Bad Axe. While Major Dodge and Gen. Atkinson were in pursuit of Black Hawk and his party, Gen. Henry, although in the rear, discovered by the report of Major Ewing, who was in front of Henry, that he was on the main trail of the Indians, which descended into the bottom, and that Dodge and Atkinson were not on it. Henry again, without orders, pursued the large trail and soon commenced the battle on the main body of the enemy, when Gen. Atkinson was in pursuit of Black Hawk and his twenty warriors. It seemed fortune was determined to distinguish her favorite, Gen. Henry, in despite of the disgrace intended for him.

As soon as Gen. Atkinson commenced the skirmish with the Indians, he called for a regiment from Henry's brigade to cover his rear, and Henry dispatched Col. Fry with his regiment.

Instantly, when Major Ewing discovered the trail of the Indians leading towards the Mississippi, he formed his battalion in order of battle and waited the order of his general. Henry dismounted his brigade at the foot of the bluff and formed the order of battle. Eight men were sent forward, as a forlorn hope, to ascertain the hiding places of the Indian warriors, and receive their fire. Five of the eight were killed or wounded. The other three defended themselves until the main army came to their rescue. Henry, with his energetic volunteers, charged on the Indians with great courage and drove them back. At that time he sent his aid, Major McConnell, to inform Gen. Atkinson that he had discovered the main body of the enemy, but Atkinson, hearing the report of fire-arms and


the roar of battle, advanced himself to the conflict, and met McConnell near the scene of action. But the main battle was mostly over before the arrival of Atkinson. Gen. Henry also dispatched a messenger to Col. Fry for him and his regiment, which order the brave colonel obeyed, and was soon in the thickest of the battle. Gen. Henry sounded the sweet music of "charge! charge!" on his bugles, and the volunteers forced the Indian warriors to the bank of the river by the time Atkinson's troops reached the battle-ground. When Atkinson reached the scene he saw the ground strewed with the slain warriors. At the river the whole force was directed against the enemy, and they were driven over a slough of the river to an island. A charge was ordered to the island, and the soldiers waded in the water to their armpits. Major Dodge, the regulars, and Ewing's and Posey's respective commands appeared on the island, and acted the part of brave and efficient soldiers. Many of the Indians attempted to swim the river, and were shot in the water. Although the warriors fought with the courage and valor of desperation, yet the conflict resembled more a carnage than a regular battle.

It is supposed that one hundred and fifty Indians were killed in this engagement, and many drowned in attempting to swim the river. Fifty — mostly squaws and children — were taken prisoners. Some squaws were killed by mistake in the battle. They were mixed with the warriors and some of them dressed like the males.

Col. Enoch C. March, the quartermaster, acted a noble and fearless part in this battle, and so did Major McConnell — in fact the whole army did their duty to the entire satisfaction of the country.

In this engagement the Americans lost seventeen killed and twelve wounded. Among the slain was Lieut. Bowman, acting as captain of a company, the captain being absent. Lieut. Bowman was a brave, meritorious officer, and was cut off in the prime of life and usefulness. He left a wife and only child, a son, the worthy representative of a highly respectable father. It may not be out of place to state, in this connection, that young Bowman is now grown; is an educated man and a practising lawyer.

The day before this battle, Capt. Throgmorton, under Lieut. Kingsbury in the steamboat Black Warrior, had killed several of the same band of Black Hawk, and had afterward descended. in his boat to Prairie du Chien, which is about forty miles below the battle-ground.

The volunteers were marched to Dixon, and then discharged with the gratitude and thanks of the country for their important and arduous services. Thus closed the campaign, and the war With Black Hawk and his band.


Chapter XCIII.

Troops Guarding the Frontiers Discharged. — Peace Restored. — Treaties Concluded. — Session of Land Whereon the State of Iowa and a part of Wisconsin is Formed.

SOME time in the forepart of August, I met Gen. Scott at Galena. He had been as far up as Prairie du Chien, and had returned. We here made arrangements to assemble the Indians at Rock Island, and conclude treaties with them. I disbanded all the troops under my command that had been guarding the frontiers.

While I was at Galena, Black Hawk and many of his warriors arrived there and were sent down to Jefferson Barracks. Black Hawk, with some of his band, had escaped the Americans at the battle of the Bad Axe, and had gone high up on the Wisconsin River. Indians were sent out to capture him and he surrendered to them.

While arrangements were being made to hold the treaties at Rock Island, the cholera appeared in its worst form in that section of the State, and among the Indians. This disease was a stranger in the country at that day, and spread terror and panic wherever it went. I was extremely anxious to wind up the war with treaties that would remove the Indians out of the State, and clear them off from our borders. On this consideration, I remained in the midst of the cholera, to effect the above object, when scarcely one single citizen was present at the treaty.

We were compelled to disperse the Indians while the disease raged at Fort Armstrong, on Rock Island, and wait until the cholera subsided before a treaty could be made. Gen. Scott also camped his army around and on Rock Island, some distance from the fort, so as to be more healthy. I presume the regular army at Rock Island at the time amounted to twelve or fifteen hundred men, and Gen. Scott exerted his great energies and abilities to save his troops from this scourge.

I witnessed the efforts and intense feelings of this great and good man to protect his soldiers from the ravages of the cholera, and I admired his noble bearing and moral courage in resisting, at the hazard of his own life, the effects of this dreadful disease. The cholera was a calamity visited on the army that the general combatted with the same courage and hauteur of character that he has so often and so honorably displayed at the head of the victorious army of the United States.

After waiting a month or more for the cholera to subside, we concluded the treaty. This delay was extremely painful — so much so that it appeared to me to be years.


On the 15th of September, 1832, we made an equitable treaty with the Winnebago Indians. It was evident that the country was so fast filling up that the aborigines could not retain their possessions in peace, and it was better for both parties for the Indians to sell out and go west.

The Winnebagos sold out all their lands in Illinois, and also all south of the Wisconsin River, and west of Green Bay. The Government gave them a large region of country west of the Mississippi, and also ten thousand dollars a year for seven years. The treaty also provided them with a free school for all their children for twenty years; also, blacksmith shops, oxen, agricultural implements, six agriculturists to oversee this department; also physicians and tobacco-rations were allowed them on their journey west.

It was ascertained at this treaty that the Winnebago tongue was a singular, gutteral language, and it required much time and acquaintance with it to speak it. It was also different from all the surrounding nations. It is an Indian tradition that the Winnebagos are a nation distinct from the surrounding Indians, and that they speak a language of a different formation from that of the other tribes, and that they emigrated from a great distance west.

During the pendency of this treaty, the remnants of the band of Black Hawk arrived at Rock Island, and exhibited distress and affliction that was truly sorrowful and painful to behold. They were literally starved to mere skeletons, and showed such destitution and misery that they excited the sorrow and sympathy of all who saw them. The heart of Gen. Scott is blessed with the most kind and tender sympathies for the distressed, which I was extremely well pleased to find on the occasion. We liberally bestowed on these deluded and miserable beings everything that tended to relieve their wants and make them happy.

On the 21st of September, 1832, a treaty was made with all the Sac and Fox tribes, by which they ceded to the United States the tract of country on which, a few years afterwards, the State of Iowa was formed.

In consideration of this cession of land, the Government gives them an annuity of twenty thousand dollars for thirty years. Also, gives them annually forty kegs of tobacco and forty barrels of salt. Also, more gunsmiths and blacksmith shops. Iron, steel, and also cattle, pork, and flour, are added. Six thousand bushels of corn for immediate support, mostly intended for the Black-Hawk band, were included in this treaty.

Gen. Scott and myself proposed to Keokuk, the main chief, to furnish them with schools and teachers, so they might educate their children. The chief refused the proposition. He said it would do well enough for the whites to be educated, but


it would not answer for the Indians. His people were made for Indians, and he had always seen that it made Indians worse to educate them. He would not have the provision in the treaty.

The Black-Hawk war, together with the treaties, terminated favorably to the public welfare, and was highly approved by the General Government. Removing the Indians from the State was doing both races much service, as they cannot reside together in peace and friendship. The Senate of the State legislature passed resolutions approving my official conduct in so promptly calling out the militia and organizing them. The thanks of the Senate were also given to the officers and soldiers, who volunteered their services in the campaigns of 1831 and 1832, in repelling the hostile Indians. Also, President Jackson, in his annual message of December, 1832, says: "After a harassing warfare, prolonged by the nature of the country and by the difficulty of procuring subsistence, the Indians were entirely defeated, and the disaffected band dispersed or destroyed. The result has been creditable for the troops engaged in the service. Severe as is the lesson to the Indians, it was rendered necessary by their unprovoked aggression, and it is to be hoped that its impression will be permanent and salutary. Our fellow-citizens upon the frontiers were ready, as they always are, in the tender of their service in the hour of danger."

The above approval of the war was honorable, eminating from President Jackson. The warlike appearance of the volunteers, together with their speedy march to the frontiers and their efficiency in battle, has taught the Indians a lesson which has had a good effect with all the surrounding tribes.

Chapter XCIV.

Congressional Elections. — Distinguished Members of the Legislature. — The Second Message of the Author. — Nullification. — President Jackson's Proclamation. — Fugitive Slave-Law. — Non-Execution. — Impeachment of Judge Smith.

A special election for one member of Congress was held on the first Monday of August, 1831, and Joseph Duncan was elected.

Under the new census and apportionment, Illinois was entitled to three members of Congress, and in August, 1832, Zadok Casey, Charles Slade, and Joseph Duncan were elected to Congress. The parties, Whig and Democratic, divided the country, and governed the elections almost entirely from the highest to the lowest.

The Black-Hawk war, like the war of 1812, brought the country into notice, and thereby the settlements were rapidly


advanced. The unsettled country north of the Illinois River, and on the Wabash, commenced to fill up and improve.

The members of the general assembly were, many of them who were elected in 1832, intelligent and talented individuals, that would do credit to any State. In the Senate were Adam W. Snyder, Archibald Williams, Wm. L. D. Ewing, George Forquer, William B. Archer, William H. Davidson, Thomas Mathers, and others, and in the House were Cyrus Edwards, James Semple, John Dougharty, A. M. Jenkins, John D. Whiteside, Stinson H. Anderson, Edmund D. Taylor, John T. Stuart, Peter Cartwright, Murray McConnell, Benjamin Mills, and others, who were conspicuous and distinguished public men in the State. A. M. Jenkins was elected Speaker of the House of Representatives.

On the 4th of December, I delivered my second message to the General Assembly, and in it I presented to that body the subjects which I considered the most important.

Nullification in South Carolina was then agitating the country considerably, and I presented the subject to the legislature in my message in these words. "All this national happiness is effected by the legitimate union of the States. This Union is the pride and support of every American. No dangerous doctrine of nullification, tending to dismember this happy confederacy ought to be countenanced or tolerated. All such doctrine should be firmly and promptly resisted, and prostrated by public opinion. This happy Union ought, and, I hope in God, will be sustained at all hazards." After I delivered my message, I received the proclamation of the 10th of December, 1832, issued by President Jackson, condemning nullification in South Carolina, and on the 24th of the same month, I presented it to the General Assembly, with a recommendation to pass some resolutions on the subject, expressive of the assent of the people of the State to the views of the President. Speaking of nullification, I say in this message: "In the view in which it presented itself to my mind, I can regard it in no other light than a treasonable attempt to dismember our happy confederacy. In the same view it must be regarded by all those who admit the supremacy of the laws, revere the Constitution, or love the Union."

When the General Assembly of Illinois received this proclamation, itself one of the most able State papers ever issued, and eminating from a very popular president and man, it was hailed as a kind of Godsend, to quiet the unruly and intemperate passions of a deluded people.

The General Assembly of Illinois passed resolutions approving the principles contained in the document, and pledging the State to sustain the President in his determination to execute the laws of the United States at all hazards.

President Jackson says in his proclamation: "But the dictates


of a high duty oblige me solemnly to announce that you cannot succeed. The laws of the United States must be executed. I have no discretionary power on the subject; my duty is emphatically pronounced in the Constitution." What undaunted towering, and sublime sentiments the President expressed on this occasion. He proclaims again: "It was known that if force was applied to oppose the execution of the laws, that it must be repelled by force." Again is the following in the proclamation stated by the President. "Fellow-citizens of the United States: The threat of unhallowed disunion, the names of those once respected, by whom it is uttered, the array of military force to support it, denote the approach of a crisis in our affairs on which the continuance of our unexampled prosperity, our political existence, and perhaps that of all free governments depend. The conjuncture demands a free, a full, and explicit enunciation, not only of my intentions, but of my principles of action."

These are only a few of the principles laid down by President Jackson in that extraordinary State paper; but the whole proclamation breathes a spirit of pure and noble patriotism that never was surpassed. This able State paper had a strong tendency to put down the spirit of nullification throughout the Union.

There is a provision in the Constitution of the United States authorizing Congress to pass laws to reclaim slaves escaping from one State to another.

In pursuance of this constitutional provision, an act of Congress, passed in the year 1793, which remained in force until it was repealed in 1850, and another act was passed in its place, with more ample provisions. It will be recollected that the principles of this last act of Congress were discussed for a long time, not only in Congress, but throughout the Union. This act was hailed by all patriots as the next act to the Constitution itself, to give peace and quiet to the Union. By eminence it was called the "the Compromise Act." It was brought before the supreme court of the nation, the highest judicial tribunal established or known in the United States, and in a most solemn manner it was pronounced to be constitutional and binding.

After this act of Congress was passed and approved by the supreme court of the nation, everybody hailed it as the great foundation of our peace and happiness in relation to slavery. The honest execution of this law, like any other should be, would give peace and happiness to the Southern States, where slavery exists; but within a few years, a section of the State of Illinois, the city of Chicago is not disposed to execute this act of Congress. The opposition in Illinois to this law is not extensive, but confined to a single city, so far as I know. Yet, in that disaffected district, the act is a dead letter, and cannot


be executed by permitting the owners of slaves to reclaim them and remove them to the State from whence they escaped.

It is true that not a very great portion of the city of Chicago is opposed to the execution of this law, but those who are in favor of it dislike to have hard feelings, and perhaps a riot and bloodshed with their neighbors in executing the law.

It is presumed that time and reflection will cause this spirit of mistaken philanthropy and unfounded sympathy to subside, and the people again to resume their sober senses. The feelings that actuate many people on this subject are the finest sentiments of the human heart, but these sentiments are misguided and permitted to destroy the judgment. The Indians are starving for the want of food. They deserve the sympathies of the people ten times more than the Negroes. The same mistaken zeal and fanaticism in olden times caused many to be burned at the stake to advance religion, as they supposed. It was the same misguided zeal that in New England, in former days, destroyed human beings for witchcraft; and, at this day, the fanatical zeal for spiritualism is about the same.

It is the adherence to the constitution and the laws that makes us a free people. It is the excellency of freedom and liberty to execute the laws; and the non-execution of the laws is as bad as Turkish tyrany. Under no consideration, will a good man rebel against the constitution of his country, or oppose the execution of the laws. I repeat the words of President Jackson, "The laws of the United States must be executed."

The non-execution of the laws presents the principles of the old and condemned Lynch-law. To resist a law is a riot and mob that no man can justify. The non-execution of the act of Congress of 1850, is a disgrace to the State, and the sooner this stigma is wiped out the better.

In the Southern section of the Union in MY OWN TIMES there has been great excitement, and some show of a military force to oppose the execution of the laws of the United States. These demonstrations are equally injudicious and treasonable as the preventive of the execution of the laws in other sections of the Union.

The good sense of the masses, and the great value of the Union, will preserve the confederacy for ages, while the people are intelligent and honest. The masses, whose breath is public opinion, will prostrate these unwise and treasonable factions in the North as well as in the South, and preserve the Union "in immortal youth."

This session of the General Assembly of 1832 of the State became conspicuous, as before it was impeached and tried one of the judges of the supreme court of the State, the Hon. Theophilus W. Smith. The House reported five different


specifications or charges against the judge for malpractice and corruption in office, and the trial was had by virtue of the constitution before the Senate. I was present at the seat of government during this trial, which produced much excitement and bitter feelings. The managers on the part of the House were Messrs. Benjamin Mills, John T. Stuart, James Semple, Murray McConnell, and John Dougharty. The defendent, T. W. Smith had for his counsel the Hon. Sidney Breese, Hon. Richard M. Young, and Thomas Ford, Esq.

The array of talent on each side, and the impeachment of a judge of the supreme court, made this trial important, and thereby it attracted great attention, not only at the seat of government, but throughout the State.

The trial of this case occupied the General Assembly from the 9th of January, 1833, until the 7th of February of the same year; and during that time not much other business was transacted. After examining a great many witnessess, and much documentary evidence, and hearing the argument of counsel, the judge was acquitted.

The Senate was formed into a High Court of Impeachment, and conducted its proceedings with great decorum and solemnity. The attorneys, many of them, spoke for several days. The vote in the Senate was close, and almost equal for and against him, but the constitution required a majority of two-thirds of the members to convict on an impeachment, and, therefore, as above stated, the judge was acquitted.

As soon as he was discharged by the Senate, the House passed a resolution under the constitution, requiring two-thirds of the members voting for it, to address a judge out of the office of the supreme court of the State. This resolution was reported to the Senate, but it did not pass that body, and the judge still continued to hold his office.

In my message I state: "The ordinary receipts into the Treasury for the last two years, ending on the 30th of November, 1832, in round numbers is one hundred and two thousand dollars; and the current expenses of the government, including certain appropriations, for the same period, were in like round numbers ninety thousand dollars." This shows the state of the finances at that period.

I strongly urged on the legislature the subject of education. I also urged on the General Assembly to construct a canal or railroad connecting the waters of Illinois River with Lake Michigan. Likewise, the harbor at Chicago. The penitentiary was warmly advocated in this message. These are some of the subjects presented to the legislature in my last message.

The General Assembly closed its labors and adjourned.


Chapter XCV.

The Early Institutions of Learning in Illinois. — Rock-Spring Seminary. McKendre College, at Lebanon. — Illinois College. — Seminaries at Hillsborough, Springfield, and Paris. — Mr. Wyman's High School in St. Louis.

THE country in 1818 commenced a gradual change from the extreme backwoods character to a more refined and improved community. The preachers of the gospel assumed a more elevated stand, and paid more attention to the propriety and dignity of pulpit eloquence. High schools, seminaries of learning, and colleges, commenced to take a permanent stand in the country.

Dr. John Mason Peck, of St. Clair County, deserves the palm of victory for establishing the first college, or seminary of learning, in Illinois.

This gentleman, being so long and so much indentified with the rise and progress of Illinois, his life and actions form a part of the history of the country, and should be recorded as such.

He was born in the year 1787, in the parish of South Farms, Litchfield, in the State of Connecticut, and was raised to labor on a farm with his father. He received the greater part of his education under the instructors of the common schools and academy of his native town. Dr. Peck is principally a self-taught man; his means were limited, yet his untired ambition to become intelligent and useful induced him to exert his strong and powerful mind in the fields of science and literature — himself being his only instructor — and he has accomplished much.

The whole of the long and useful life of Dr. Peck has been employed mainly on two great and important objects — preaching the gospel and advancing education. He joined the Baptist church at an early age; and has preached the gospel almost half a century. In order to qualify himself the better for his favorite pursuits, he attended for one year the study of literature and science in the city of Philadelphia. He spent some time in the medical university of that city. In 1818, he taught school in St. Louis, Missouri, and the next year in St. Charles, in the same State.

As is already stated, Dr. Peck settled in Illinois in 1821; and for many years thereafter he preached the gospel and established many Sunday schools in Missouri, Illinois, and a part of Indiana. He also distributed the bible in those States, as well as preached the gospel in them. In 1826, he commenced to carry out his favorite object — the establishment of a college


where all the higher branches of education were taught. On New Year's day, 1827, he invited all those friendly to the establishment of such an institution to meet at his house and organize a board of managers to accomplish the object. They met at his residence, known as Rock Spring, in St. Clair County, and decided to establish an institution to be called "The Theological Seminary, and High School." Dr. Peck had been engaged for years previously in soliciting funds to erect this, seminary, and he with his own hands, and his hired men, in the dead of winter, cut the timber for the building, and hauled it on the snow. He paid five hundred dollars to the institution, and also donated twenty-five acres of land, at Rock Spring, on which to erect the buildings, and commodious and comfortable houses were erected accordingly. Nine trustees were elected to govern the institution, and also a system of education was adopted. A principal, a professor of mathematics and natural philosophy was created, and a professorship of Christian theology was also established. The board of trustees was organized, and the Rev. James Leman, appointed president; Dr. Peck, secretary and treasurer; and John Messenger, Esq., auditor of the accounts. At the first meeting of the trustees, they elected the Rev. Joshua Bradley, principal; Dr. Peck, professor of Christian theology; and John Messenger, professor of mathematics and natural philosophy. Some short time after this seminary was opened, there were one hundred students in it. The institution continued to prosper for many years, down to 1831, when it was transferred to Alton, and formed the foundation of the Shurtleff College of that city. Professor John Russell, of Bluff Dale, Green County, had charge of the institution for one year.

During the existence of this college, two hundred and forty-two students, male and female, were taught in it; and many became, in after days, conspicuous individuals. This institution did the country much service; and the founder, the Rev. Dr. Peck, deserves, and he receives, the gratitude and friendship of the public for his exertions in the premises.

In the year 1828, Rev. Peter Cartwright commenced raising funds, by voluntary contributions, to erect a building for a seminary of learning; and did actually commence a building for the seminary at White Hall, in Green County; but the citizens of Lebanon, about the same time, also commenced with subscriptions to erect a college edifice at Lebanon, St. Clair County, and proceeding to some extent, the Methodist conference urged the propriety to unite the efforts of both these institutions into one, and it to be located at Lebanon, to which Mr. Cartwright consented, and the Lebanon seminary was established, by stockholders, in the year 1828. It was then placed under the patronage of the "Methodist Conference," and the Rev. E. R. Ames, was employed as teacher. By a resolution of the


stockholders, the name of McKendre College was given to the institution in 1830, and in 1833, the Rev. Peter Akers was elected the president. In 1834, an act of General Assembly was passed incorporating the college, and accepted by the board of trustees.

The following is a list of the presidents of McKendre College: Rev. Peter Akers, elected in 1833; Rev. John Dew, in 1837; Rev. John W. Merril, in 1838; Rev. James C. Finley, in 1841; Rev. Peter Akers, in 1845; Rev. Erastus Wentworth, in 1846; Rev. A. W. Cummings, in 1850; and Rev. Peter Akers, in 1852, who is the president at this time.

This college is well furnished with philosophical and other apparatus necessary to advance all the various branches of education, and also with a library of six or seven thousand volumes. A museum is also attached to it, containing specimens of geology, minerology, ornithology, and other things.

The primitive buildings of wood were good in their day, and are retained at this time for the chapel attached to the college. The new buildings are splendid and elegent, and in just proportion to the rise and progress of the country. They are composed of brick, and finished in the most approved style of architecture. Their capacious apartments are capable to accommodate two or three hundred students, and other large additions are being made for halls and other accommodations of the college.

This college is amply endowed, so that its permanency and usefulness are secured, and its present successful operation under the talented and worthy board of trustees is cheering to the friends of education. This college labored for many years in poverty and adversity, but its friends never despaired, and have at last accomplished the original design of the institution to their satisfaction. At this day, it contains more than one hundred and fifty students, and stands a proud monument of the abilities and energies of the citizens of Lebanon. This institution has educated more young men than any other in the State; and many of the students of McKendre College are now among the most accomplished scholars in the West, and many are distinguished and marked characters in both public and private life.

The Rev. Mr. Ellis, a Presbyterian preacher and missionary, from New England, about this time commenced a college to be located in Bond County, and had obtained some considerable amount of money subscribed for the institution. Trustees were appointed, and after much mental labor and canvassing in the premises, it was finally located at Jacksonville, as that town had subscribed more funds to the institution than Springfield or any other place. A small building for a college, at first, was erected in 1829; and about that time an association of theological


students was formed in Yale College in the East to establish a college in the West. A correspondence was commenced between them and the trustees of the Jacksonville Seminary, and a union formed. In August, 1832, the institution was organized, and called "The Illinois College." The various departments were formed with their proper professorships, and the Rev. Edward Beecher was elected the first president. The trustees prevailed on Prof. John Russell, of Bluff Dale, to make the inaugural address in Latin, which he did to the entire satisfaction of the literati present.

The fine edifice of this institution, which was of brick in 1832, was burnt in 1852; but another building, more splendid and capacious than the first, is now erected. This institution has done much service to the country, and bids fair to continue its usefulness.

John Tillson, Esq., mostly at his private expense, erected a tasty and elegant building in Hillsborough, in Montgomer County for a seminary of learning, and in it was taught many young men. This institution at Hillsborough commenced in early days, when the country needed such high-schools and seminaries. The Germans purchased the buildings of the seminary at Hillsborough, and established in them a theological school and seminary of learning. It has since been removed to Springfield.

About the year 1831, the Shurtleff College, as heretofore stated, commenced at Alton, and is at this day in successful operation.

At Paris, in Edgar County, the Methodists erected a seminary of more recent date.

Almost thirty years past, Mr. Wyman emigrated from Hillsborough, in Illinois, to St. Louis, Missouri, and established there a high-school, where the higher branches of literature were taught. This seminary was continued for many years, and greatly advanced the public interest.

Chapter XCVI.

Early Literature in Illinois. — Morris Birkbeck, Esq. — Dr. Lewis C. Beck. — Dr. John M. Peck. — Hon. James Hall. — Hon. Sidney Breese. — Prof. John Russell. — The Venomous Worm. — Mr. M. Tarver. — The Western Journal and Civilian. — Antiquarian Historical Society at Vandalia.

THE rise and progress of literature in a new country is so gradual and imperceptible that it is almost impossible to define and record its commencement and march with any certainty. It is not of such a character as to be defined and written down like many other subjects.


If I were permitted to make an epoch in the rise and progress of literature in the history of Illinois, I would place it in the year 1818 — the time the State Government was organized. This event attracted a great many intelligent and literary characters to the State, who made a decided impression on the country at that period.

I think it may be recorded, that Morris Birkbeck was the first literary man who settled in Illinois. He explored the southeastern section of the State in 1815, or thereabouts, and wrote sketches of the country. These pieces were published in the public journals, which had a tendency to make the country known to the public. Mr. Birkbeck had, deservedly, considerable celebrity as an author and a man of letters.

The next pioneer of literature was Dr. Lewis C. Beck, of St. Louis, wrote "A Gazetteer of Missouri and Illinois." This work was published in 1823, and is a valuable book. His statements of facts are generally correct, and the work is creditable to the author and serviceable to the public.

About 1819, the Rev. Dr. John M. Peck, James Hall, Esq., of Shawneetown, Prof. John Russell, of Bluff Dale, Green County, and the Hon. Sidney Breese, now of Carlyle, appeared in the State, and gave science and literature a decided stand in the country.

Besides the above-named gentlemen, many professional men, mostly lawyers, and some others, located in Illinois, and added considerably to the mental improvement of the country.

Dr. John M. Peck wrote many volumes, and delivered many lectures. He wrote "The New Guide for Emigrants," and "The Gazetteer of Illinois." Both of these works are well written, and show great research and accuracy in the author. They are small but standard works on the subjects they treat. He also revised, and almost wrote in the new, "The Annals of the West," which the Rev. Mr. Perkins had published. In this work he also displayed much-talent and research. It is, at this day, an excellent history of the Mississippi Valley. The last work he wrote was "The Biography of Father Clark." This volume has done much to raise the character of the author as a good writer, as well as to advance the cause of religion. His style is strong, bold, and energetic. His labors are also directed in collecting and preserving material for Western history, which he is now writing.

Judge Hall is a distinguished scholar and writer. He settled in Illinois, and entered the field of literature and science, as well as the practice of the law. He was the editor of the Western Monthly Magazine, and the Western Souvenir. Both these periodicals were creditable to the author and serviceable to the country. He was elected president of the Antiquarian and Historical Society, established at the seat of government of


Illinois in 1827, and delivered addresses that were considered chaste and eloquent. The Illinois Intelligencer was, for a long time, ably edited by him at Vandalia, and in this paper, literature found an able advocate from the pen of Judge Hall. He is a smooth, chaste, and polished writer, always doing his subject ample justice.

The Hon. Sidney Breese has done much to advance literature in the State. He was for many years the editor of public journals, and always distinguished himself as an able and efficient literary writer. He was the editor of the first reports of the supreme court of the State, known as "Breese's Reports" which shows the author to be a person of strong intellect, and also an able literary writer. His speeches in the senate of the congress of the United States, while he was a member of that body, gave him standing as a literary character as well as an able statesman.

Judge Breese also wrote and delivered some lectures on the early settlement of Illinois by the French that were pronounced good. His style is strong and energetic, and also contains smoothness and perspicuity that are marked on all his compositions.

Prof. John Russell, of Bluff Dale, Green County, Illinois, holds a conspicuous and distinguished rank among the literati of the West. He has devoted his life to study, and now stands in the front rank of science and literature. Nature bestowed on him a mind capacious and strong, and his labors have achieved much celebrity. He has bestowed much of his time and talent on the study of the languages, and is a scholar not only in the dead languages but also in the modern tongues. He understands the French and German languages almost as well as he does the English, but I think he excels in his chaste, beautiful, and elegant composition. His style is smooth, classic, and polished, and his composition flows on in such harmony and elegance that it often reaches the elevated region of poetry. He writes the pure English language in opposition to the fungous growth to the English of foreign dialects, and has the good taste to content himself with short syllables when they are appropriate.

Of the early history of Mr. Russell I know nothing, except the few items I have obtained from my talented friend, the Rev. Dr. Peck, and from others. I have found Mr. Russell, as I believe every one else has done, not very communicative about himself or his writings. This must be my excuse for giving so meagre and unsatisfying an account of one of our literary characters whom the late Gov. Ford, in his history of Illinois, has pronounced a man of genius and a fine writer.

Mr. Russell is a native of Cavendish, Vermont; was educated at Middlebury College, in that State, and graduated in the class


of 1817. Not long after leaving college he came to the West, the State of Indiana, where he married a daughter of Capt. Spencer, (late of the United States Army,) a young lady of fine talents, and early in the spring of 1819 removed to the then Territory of Missouri, and settled on the banks of the Missouri River, in St. Louis County, where, and in St. Louis, they resided a few years, whence they removed to this State and settled in Green County, on a beautiful and romantic place at the foot of the Bluffs of the Illinois River, since known by the name of Bluff Dale. At this place Mr. Russell still resides. His habits are remarkably retiring, and most of his lifetime is devoted to literary pursuits. Perhaps no man in the State has been a more indefatigable student than he. Of his character as a literary man, and of the character of his writings, I have already spoken. Most of the productions of his pen, however, have been published without his name. As an instance of his reluctance to appear before the public; while Dr. Peck was temporarily residing in one of the largest of our eastern cities, Mr. Russell sent to him the manuscript of a small volume, for publication, with an injunction not to make known the name of the author. The book was published, was afterward stereotyped, and is yet in circulation; but I am told, on the authority of the Rev. Dr. Peck, that the publishers do not, to this day, know the name of the author.

An article of his, "The Piasa," written for an Eastern magazine, ran rapidly through the American press. About three years afterward, it appeared in a French periodical, translated word for word into that language, bearing the name, as its author, of a Frenchman who had figured somewhat in this country. He pretended that the story had been told to him by an Indian chief. Dr. Peck exposed the fraud through an American paper of wide circulation, the result of which was rather mortifying to the pretended author.

He has devoted the greater part of his life to the promotion of the higher branches of education in various colleges, not only in his adopted State, but also in many others in the West. In all these literary and scientific positions, he distinguished himself as a scholar and professor of great merit. He has written much for the periodicals and literary journals, and has edited public journals himself. One single production of his, known as "The Venomous Worm," has gained for him great celebrity. This piece is published in Europe in many different languages, and is found in almost all of the American and British school-books. I have here inserted it, and commend it particularly to my youthful readers:

"THE VENOMOUS WORM — ‘Outvenoms all the worms of Nile.’ Who has not heard of the rattlesnake and the copperhead? An unexpected sight of either of these reptiles will


make even the lords of creation recoil. But there is a species of worm, found in various parts of this State, which conveys a poison of a nature so deadly, that, compared with it, even the venom of the rattlesnake is harmless. To guard our readers against this foe of the human kind, is the object of this lesson.

"This worm varies much in size. It is frequently an inch in diameter; but, as it is rarely seen, except when coiled, its length can hardly be conjectured. It is of a dull lead-color, and generally lives near a spring or a small stream of water, and bites the unfortunate people who are in the habit of going there to drink. The brute creation it never molests. They avoid it with the same instinct that teaches the animals of Peru to shun the deadly Coya.

"Several of these reptiles have long infested our settlements, to the misery and destruction of many of our fellow-citizens. I have, therefore, had frequent opportunities of being the melancholy spectator of the effects produced by the subtle poison which this worm infuses.

"The symptoms of its bite are terrible. The eyes of the patient becomes red and fiery; his tongue swells to an immoderate size, and obstructs his utterance; and delirium of the most horrid character quickly follows. Sometimes in his madness he attempts the destruction of his dearest friends.

"If the sufferer has a family, his weeping wife and helpless infants are not unfrequently the objects of his frantic fury. In a word, he exhibits, to the life, all the detestable passions that rankle in the bosom of a savage — and such is the spell in which his senses are locked, that no sooner has the unhappy patient recovered from the paroxysm of insanity, occasioned by the bite, than he seeks out the destroyer for the sole purpose of being bitten again.

"I have seen a good, old father, his locks as white as snow, his steps slow and trembling, beg in vain of his only son to quit the lurking-place of the worm. My heart bled when he turned away, for I knew the fond hope that his son would be the ‘stafi of his declining years’ had supported him through many a sorrow.

"Youths of America, would you know the name of this reptile. It is called the worm of the still."

Prof. Russell has done much to impress the public mind in the West with the more elevated and classic principles of science and literature.

Another distinguished individual, Mr. M. Tarver, of St. Louis, Missouri, senior editor of the Western Journal and Civilian, has for many years poured a constant and efficient stream of literature and intelligence into the great reservoir of mental improvement in the West, which has rendered him not only conspicuous and distinguished as an author, but also the public has been greatly benefited by his efforts.


Mr. Tarver was born in the State of North Carolina, in the year 1794, and was raised in agricultural pursuits.

In the year 1814, he immigrated with his father to Georgia; in 1818, he became a citizen of Alabama; and in 1842, he located in St. Louis, Missouri. At full age, he became a merchant. He studied law, and about the thirtieth year of his age commenced the practice. He retired from the bar, and became a cotton-planter in Alabama. At the age of fifty-three, he located in St. Louis, Missouri, as above stated, where he commenced the publication of the Western Journal, at present known as the Western Journal and Civilian.

I have taken the liberty to present his various pursuits in life to show his ability to conduct the Journal more efficiently, as he has actual experience in three great pursuits of wealth and honor, to wit: agriculture, commerce, and the practice of law. A practical knowledge of these various avocations enables him to make the Journal more serviceable to the public.

He has had the assistance of Mr. Risk, in former days, with the Journal, and at present Mr. Cobb. He has published eighty-four numbers of the work, and the demand for the Journal is increasing rapidly.

The following is the system on which the Western Journal and Civilian is conducted, taken from an able review of that work:

"The plan of the Journal, embracing the entire subject of political economy, much labor has been directed to different branches of that science.

"The elements of wealth, the division of labor, the natural laws of commerce, the artificial agents of exchange, money, credit, banks, industrial corporations, and public improvements, have all claimed and received our consideration.

"The elements of these several subjects have been carefully investigated; and we have endeavored to form a system adapted to the character, pursuits, and social institutions of the American people — a system conforming to the climate, territorial extent, and hydrography of our continent, and its geographical relations with other countries."

This is the system on which the Journal has been conducted for many years past, in which time it has gained for itself much fame and celebrity, as well as advanced the best interests of the country.

Mr. Tarver labors incessantly to make the Journal useful and acceptible to the public. He has accomplished much, and is, on the highway, not only to a distinguished celebrity and character, but what is far better, to advance the best interests of the country.

His style of composition is strong and efficient, calculated more to convince the judgment than to excite the passions.

The citizens of St. Louis are preparing his marble bust to


present to the Mercantile Library of that city. This is done to do honor to him and his able efforts in the Journal to advance the character and interests of the West.

In December, 1827, the society known as "The Antiquarian and Historical Society of Illinois," which existed for a few years, was organized at Vandalia, the seat of government, and received a considerable number of books. The first officers were James Hall, president; Gov. Coles and Judge Wilson, vice-presidents; James Whitlock, secretary; and Robert H. Peebles, librarian. The corresponding committee were John M. Robinson, John Reynolds, Sidney Breese, George Forquer, and Benjamin Mills.

I was one of the few persons who established this society, but I was so much involved in other business that I had not time to give it much or any of my attention. A constitution was adopted, and adjourned to meet on the 22d of December 1828.

The society did meet, but did not effect any great or useful object, as such institutions may do.

In an issue of the Illinois Intelligencer, dated 14th February, 1829, is the following: "We publish this week the proceedings of the Antiquarian Historical Society of this State, and we earnestly recommend this subject to the attention of our readers. The improvement of the country, and its advancement in literature, are of more importance to the people than the elevation of an ambitious aspirant, or the quarrels of demagogues."

Chapter XCVII.

Improvements of the Country. — The Author Offers for Congress. — Is Elected. — Mr. Snyder and Mr. Humphries his Opponents. — Gov. Kinney and Gen. Duncan Offers for Governor. — Duncan is Elected. The Hon. Mr. Slade, the Member in Congress, Dies, and the Author is Elected in his Place.

THE State improved during the years immediately succeeding the Black-Hawk war with increased rapidity.

Many of the volunteers were enabled, by the payments they received from the Government for the military services, to purchase homes for themselves of the public lands. This war had the effect to circulate much money throughout the State. The whole expenses of the war were eight or ten millions of dollars, and the greater portion of it was paid out to the Illinois volunteers.

Being in the office of governor for some years, I was prevented from the practice of the law, and in the time had been engaged in political life, until it commenced to be a kind of


second nature to me. Moreover, I was then young, ardent, and ambitious, so that I really thought it was right for me to offer for congress, and I did so in the spring of 1834. I knew the people were generally satisfied with my conduct as governor, and well pleased With the course I pursued in the Black-Hawk war, particularly the treaties that removed the Indians from the State and its borders, were decidedly popular.

At that day, in 1834, the convention-system was not established, and as many persons offered their services as pleased. The State then contained three congressional districts, and that in which I offered extended up from the mouth of the Ohio, to include Macoupin County, and east to embrace Washington, Clinton, and Bond. There were fifteen counties in the district. This district contained a large Democratic majority, and no Whig offered for congress at that election. There were in the field three candidates for congress. A. W. Snyder, Esq., Col. Edward Humphries, and myself, all Democrats, and Jackson men. All the candidates offered without a convention.

Mr. Snyder, the candidate for congress, was a conspicuous and distinguished character, a popular member of the general assembly, and possessed great strength and versatility of talent. He had been, in his youth, deprived of a classic education, and was a self-taught man. But the natural powers of his mind were strong and energetic, and he studied the human character in all its various phases. He possessed, in an eminent degree, the talent to advance himself in the good graces of the people. His address was agreeable, polite, and courteous. His speeches were generally short, eloquent, and prepossessing. His voice was excellent, and his addresses were generally received by his audience with marked approbation, and frequently produced powerful effects. He was then youthful, ardent, and ambitious. Labor with him in electioneering was a pleasure, and his sociability and incessant intercourse with the masses seemed to be his pleasure and happiness. Mr. Snyder was then, in 1834, a practising lawyer, and was extremely popular at the bar. He always possessed the happy faculty of making the jurors believe he had the right side of the cause. Scarcely any person had superior talent of making a bad case in court look well. With these rare qualities and abilities, he rose to eminence in the State, and was nominated by a Democratic convention to be a candidate for governor. He would have been, in all human probability, elected governor in 1842, but before the election he died, much regretted by the people.

Col. Humphries, my other opponent, was a gentleman of good, sound talents, and had been for many years an officer in the land-office at Kaskaskia. He had been a warm supporter of Crawford, and was in the congressional election, an ultra-Jackson man. He was a more violent and proscriptive man


than either Mr. Snyder or myself. He canvassed the district considerably, but made no stump-speeches, and was not known in many of the counties, but he received a goodly number of votes. Nevertheless, the contest for a seat in congress was between Mr. Snyder and myself. I was tolerably well informed in the science of electioneering with the masses. I was raised with the people in the State, and was literally one of them. We always acted together, and our common instincts, feelings, and interests were the same. Under these circumstances, the people generally gave me their support. My stump-speeches were generally well received by the people, and if I were to venture an opinion of them, I would say they made no pretention to eloquence or classic elegance, yet when they were uttered in congress, in the courts of justice, or in the gatherings of the people around the stump, they attracted the attention of the audience. They flow naturally and purely from the heart, which supplies in them many defects.

It is strange, when a person is in an excited and zealous contest for an election, the whole transaction then appears just and proper, but years afterward, when the passion subsides, and all things are changed, and the actors are sobered down to common sense. These election contests appear to me to be horrid and absurd; that so much energy and exertion should be used on these occasions. These hot and excited contests are not injurious to the public. Much discussion is exerted by them among the people, and the masses will become enough interested to discuss and inform themselves on political subjects. When there is no party, and a general apathy prevails among the people, they will not inform themselves on political subjects, and cannot vote with judgment and propriety.

Those canvassing for office, and the few elected, are poorly paid for their services, if patriotism be not their object. The best years of a man's life, his talents, whatever they may be, and all his energies are exerted for the benefit of the people, and perhaps rewarded with neglect and oblivion. The pittance of pecuniary compensation never requited any person for his official services, if he was worthy to be in office at all. I sincerely state that I never regarded as important the salary of office, but I entered the public service with a sincere desire to advance the best interest of the country, which was my main reward. I labored assiduously and incessantly to accomplish it. Truth also requires me to state that I was ambitious to act in such a manner that the sober judgment of the people would approve of my conduct. The main recompense for a public officer is, to know he has acted just and right, and that his countrymen approve it. If a person would subdue his ambition for office, and remain a private citizen, I repeat, as I have before stated in this work, that he would be a more happy man.


There is no person happy who is in public office or canvassing for office. The aspirations, and the state of mind actuating him at the time, destroy much of the happiness that might otherwise exist in the breast of a public officer, or an aspirant for office. When a person has been in public life for years, it becomes a second-nature to him, and few possess the moral courage to abandon it. This accounts for many remaining in office as an occupation.

At the same election, in August, 1834, Gov. Kinney and the Hon. Joseph Duncan were candidates for governor, also without convention, and Mr. Duncan was elected. The governor elect did not return home from the East during the election canvass, but addressed circulars to the people. If he had been at home it is doubtful if he would have been elected, as he had entirely abandoned the Democratic party and joined the Whigs, which a great portion of his supporters would not believe until they were forced to the unwelcome belief.

In the summer of 1834, the Hon. Charles Slade, the member in congress from this district, was seized with the cholera on his return home, and died. This death left in the district a vacancy, and I was elected to fill it, without any organized opposition. At this time I was elected for three years in congress, and I entered on a new public theatre entirely.

Chapter XCVIII.

The Author a Member of Congress. — It is Difficult to Effect much in that Body. — Character of David Crockett. — City of Baltimore. — City of Washington. — President Jackson and the Augustan Age of Congress.

I WAS now a Member of Congress — about forty-six years old — and had been scarcely ever out of Illinois. I had travelled none, and scarcely ever entered into any society, except that of the masses. I was a backwoodsman, sleeping and walking, acting and thinking, and in fact in everything. I had then never seen a city larger than St. Louis, and in truth most of the improvements, and many other things, of which I had read, appeared different to me from what I had anticipated.

I entered into this congressional career with a determination to perform all I was able for my constituents, and I presumed it would be a good deal. I had been in the habit of effecting many measures in Illinois, and I sincerely believed I would be able to do the same in congress. I thought some measures were so manifestly right and just — such as reducing the price of the public lands, obtaining appropriations to improve rivers, and the like — that they could be easily accomplished. But


when I entered the halls of congress, I discovered instantly that this body was much greater than I had supposed, and I could effect less than I had contemplated. Many of the greatest men in the nation — perhaps in the world — were there assembled, and had had their minds, for a long time, made up on these great and important subjects, so that congress was immovable on them. Not only in this respect was I mistaken but in many other things. I wrote back home from Washington City truly my impressions; that I found many of the public men much less than I had expected, and the buildings much larger — yet many of the distinguished characters were even greater than I had supposed.

I left Belleville about the middle of November, 1834, and passed over the country by land to Louisville. I fell in with two members of congress, the Hon. David Crockett, of Tennessee, and the Hon. Thomas Chilton, of Kentucky; we travelled together on the Ohio River to Wheeling.

This was the first time I had travelled on this beautiful stream, and I was delighted with it. The ancient names on the Ohio I had heard since I was a youth, and seeing the places themselves forced on me the early settlement of the country.

I found the Hon. Mr. Crockett to be, in my opinion, not such a character in reality as the public prints and public opinion had represented him. He appeared to be a man of about forty-five years old, and was of rather large and portly person. He was fleshy, and demonstrated no intellectual superiority. Good-nature and benevolence marked his features, and an inexhaustible store of humor and mirth was at his command. He had not been blessed with a liberal or classic education, but he had acquired much information of men and the common concerns of life. His forte was his benevolence and kindness of heart. He possessed at the end of his tongue many anecdotes and humorous stories, mostly on hunting or electioneering. He possessed a good sound judgment, but no brilliancy or "the etherial fire of genius." Circumstances made Crockett what he was. This is the case, more or less, with all mankind. He and his constituents were well matched. He was very bitter against Jackson and his "Kitchen Cabinet," as Kendall and Blair were then called. He said Kendall should be hung, but corruption and malignity had made him so lean and light that he could not be hung dead by a rope around his neck until his pockets were filled with macadamized rocks to weight him down. He had a great fund of such anecdotes.

He was on his way to Philadelphia, before he went to congress, to see about "His Life" — a book he had written. At Wheeling he left us. He was a bitter opponent in congress of Jackson's administration.

The National Road, at Wheeling, was the first macadamized


road I ever beheld; and the railroad at Fredericksburg, in Maryland, extending to Baltimore, was the first I ever saw.

The city of Baltimore was to my eye grand and magnificent. I could not, by reading, realize the beauties and grandeur of the city so much as to see it. The large edifices, the monuments, and the shipping in the harbor, all struck my backwoods' mind with wonder and surprise. I recollect that my first letters home stated that talents and money could accomplish almost any improvement. I had not the least idea that such improvements as I saw could be made at all. I saw the water in the bay, which was my first sight of a branch of an ocean. The shipping in the harbor was another curiosity. I was something like a country boy when he goes to town for the first time with his father — everything is new and strange to him. And many things were so to me. But the greatest and most interesting spectacle of all was the government and the seat of government of this great republic. The site of the city of Washington, and the city itself, are grand and imposing objects, and attract universal attention for their beauty and splendor — but it was the assemblage of great men at the seat of government of the United States, and at the opening of Congress, where a grand and imposing spectacle was presented. At the time I entered congress, in 1834, President Jackson was in the zenith of his fame and high standing, and was at that time the most distinguished man among them all.

When the Roman Empire reached the highest pinnacle of literary fame and political power, in the reign of Augustus Caesar, the period was called the "Augustan age." There was a period that existed eminently in the Jackson administration, and a few years after, that might be called the Augustan age of Congress. Such an extraordinary constellation of great and distinguished individuals may never again appear in office at the seat of government.

The cabinet of President Jackson at this time was John Forsythe, secretary of state; Levi Woodbury, secretary of the treasury; Lewis Cass, secretary of the war department; Mahlon Dickinson, secretary of the navy department; William T. Barry, postmaster-general; and B. F. Butler, attorney-general. The administration was strong and safe in the hands of the President and his cabinet.


Chapter XCIX.

Party-Spirit in Congress. — The Globe and Intelligencer Newspapers — Eminent Men in Congress. — Party-Spirit, when it is Sectional is Dangerous and Wrong.

ON the first Monday of December, 1834, I was sworn in a member of congress, and took my seat. Hon. John Bell, of Tennessee, was speaker, and Walter Franklin, clerk. I was placed by the speaker on the Committee of Roads and Canals the same occupied by my predecessor, Hon. Charles Slade, of Carlyle, Illinois.

When I entered Congress, party-spirit and party-excitement raged there with the greatest force that bitter and acrimonious discussion could extend it. All the sarcastic invectives, boiled as it were, into aqua fortis, that the English language could furnish, was used in many speeches in congress, and every bitter and scathing idea that words could convey, was often hurled with great force at each other in the halls of congress. Jackson's administration came in for its share, but these fiery missiles became common and harmless. Like the man eating arsenic — he got so used to it that it did not hurt him — so it was in congress, it became so common that it disturbed nobody.

The two leading journals at Washington City, that issued daily papers in 1834, were the Globe, conducted by Blair and Rives, and the National Intelligencer, by Gales and Seaton. The Globe issued fiery and scorching philippics, burning as if they emanated from a red-hot furnace, while the Intelligencer was equally powerful, but more mild and dignified in its bearing. Blair and Gales were both exceedingly talented and distinguished editors, but of quite different characters. Each editor, to a great extent, represented his party. The Globe was the organ at Washington of the Democratic party, and the Intelligencer of the Whig party. Blair was progressive, enthusiastic, and extremely ardent; while Gales was more conservative, staid, and circumspect. The policy of the one was radical, and almost agrarian; while the other attempted to guide the ship of state within the ancient and approved channel, and risk nothing in search of novelties. One paper cast itself on the masses for support, while the other entertained a "holy horror" of the excesses and exuberances of wild Democracy. Blair respected no institution, bank or other, for their antiquity or respectability, if he supposed they were corrupt and the public good required their destruction; while the other, the venerable Gales, paid the utmost respect and defended "vested rights," and sober usages of Washington and


other fathers of the Republic. Both these papers were sustained with great liberality, and their circulation reached the most remote corners of the Union, containing the standard principles of their respective parties. It must not be omitted, that Amos Kendall, who is one of the most able partizan writers in America, wrote much for the Globe. Gales was aged, talented, and profound in his profession, and seemed to conduct the Intelligencer with equal ability with the Globe — but his party was then on the wane, which placed his paper a shade in the background.

I never saw the force and power of the press so much verified as I did at the City of Washington. Either of the journals, the Globe or Intelligencer, in advocating a public man, although his talents may be limited, could render him popular with his party, despised by the other, and elevate him above his compeers. In fact, the abuse of a public character by either party would generally make the other take him up and sustain him. This was the excess of party-spirit. It was generally understood that the above papers were the organs of their respective parties, which was the main reason they wielded this great power.

The Globe received the public printing for many years, which made the conductors princely fortunes. In the management of the Globe, the organ of the President, it became necessary for him to consult often with Blair and Kendall, which was a reason, among others, for the Whig party to ridicule and condemn "Jackson's Kitchen Cabinet," which was composed of Blair and Kendall. The Whigs alleged that it was the "Kitchen Cabinet" that advised the President to remove so many Whigs from office and put Democrats in their places. The movements of this cabinet were bitterly handled by the Whig press at that day. At this time removals of this character are quite common.

Some time before I reached Washington City, the President had re-organized his cabinet, and the old members retired. The Whigs called this an explosion, and ridiculed it. They said that it reminded them of the sailor fresh from the ocean, where hard times are common, but desirous to see fun went to a show. In the cellar of the house, under the place where the play was performing, some powder was stored, and by accident a spark of fire reached it and it exploded. The people were dashed about considerably, and the sailor was cast back into a garden. He raised himself up, brushing the dirt out of his eyes, and asked: "What in hell are they going to show next?" If it were worse, he "would not attend the play any longer." The sailor supposed the explosion was a regular part of the performance. The Whigs asked, "What would Jackson show next?"


It was a cant phrase in Illinois, when a person was halting between two parties, that he was on "Pea Ridge." I wrote home a private letter, yet it reached the press, that in Congress no one was then on "Pea Ridge." There was no such place in either house of Congress in those heated party-times.

It is supposed it was the agitation and discussion of the war question with Britain in 1812, that caused so many great and eminent men to appear in congress during the administration of Gen. Jackson, and for some administrations thereafter. I sincerely believe that no body of men ever existed — the Senate of Rome, the British House of Peers, or any other — that equalled the Senate of the Congress of the United States in the year 1840, and a few years before and after. The following Senators were members of that body at times during this "Augustan age" of Congress: Webster, Clay, Calhoun, Wright, Woodbury, Cass, Buchanan, Benton, White, Davis, Grundy, John Ewing, Crittenden, Preston, Allen, Porter, Choate, Poindexter Black, and others. In the house of representatives, were John Q. Adams, Bell, Polk, Ben. Hardin, Fillmore, Pearce, Marshall, Burges, Pickens, and Cumberling, who were great and eminent men, and many others of almost equal merit. Three of the members of the lower house, Messrs. Polk, Fillmore, and Pearce, were afterwards elected to the Presidency. Party-spirit was raging and carried to the greatest extent.

In a free government, parties are necessary, if they are conducted on just and proper principles. They excite the masses to reflect on and discuss the necessary politics of the country, but when party-spirit is carried too far, or when parties assume a sectional or local character, they are dangerous and should be suppressed. Whenever one section of the country is arraigned against the other, as it sometimes is on the question of slavery, it does not produce good results and should be abandoned. Whenever the people over this great republic permit themselves to become jealous of one another, or allow their sectional feelings to govern them, so as to produce an angry and bad feeling in the nation, it is wrong, and all good men should unite to suppress it, and cause harmony and good-will to reign throughout the republic.

Chapter C.

Sketch of the Life and Character of General Jackson. — Anecdote of Him with the Child and Lamb. — Sketch of Henry Clay. — The Principles of the Whig and Democratic Parties.

PRESIDENT Jackson was born in the State of South Carolina, and was, when a youth, in the Revolutionary war. He received a limited education, and in the year 1784, studied law in


Salisbury, North Carolina. He was admitted to the bar in 1786, and in 1788, he settled in West Tennessee, in the present city of Nashville. In 1796, he was a member of the convention that formed the constitution of the State of Tennessee. He was elected the first member of congress to the house of representatives, and the year following he was elected to the senate of the United States. He resigned the office of senator, as he said he disliked the political juggling he had to encounter in the senate.

In his early life, he was elected major-general of the militia, and remained in that office until the year 1814, when he was appointed major-general in the United States army.

Gen. Jackson was appointed a judge of the supreme court of Tennessee, but he resigned that office also.

At the close of the war of 1812, and after his brilliant victory at New Orleans, he retired to the Hermitage, on the Cumberland River, a few miles above Nashville, and there remained in quiet and peace until the people called on him to fill the highest office in the republic. His own State, Tennessee, in 1822, nominated him for the Presidency, and the next was the State of Pennsylvania. At the election in November, 1824, Gen. Jackson did not succeed, but at the next election, in 1828, he was triumphantly elected.

His enemies, and some of his friends, considered him to possess a temper too irrascible, hasty, and violent for civil office. It was feared by his warmest friends, who were not intimate with his character, that he was too impulsive and reckless for civil employment, but when his true character was better known, it was discovered that he was mild, agreeable, and benevolent in the extreme when he was clear of a violent and hasty gust of passion which at times visited him. And although he possessed firmness of character in an eminent degree, yet he reflected profoundly and considered well with his sound judgment on all great measures before he made a decision, and when his judgment was formed, he would not change it under any circumstances until he was convinced that he was in error. His firmness was one of the great leading traits of his character, yet he was not obstinate, but when he was convinced of an error, he had the moral courage to change his opinion. The following anecdote is told of him by Col. Benton, in his book, and exhibits Gen. Jackson in his true character: Col. Benton called on Gen. Jackson one wet, rainy evening at the Hermitage. It was cold and chilly, and Col. Benton found Gen. Jackson before the fire with a child and lamb. The child wanted the lamb brought in the house out of the rain and placed by the fire. The General had indulged the child, and had both the child and lamb with him before the fire. This scene of peace and innocence, that pleased so much the heart of Jackson, proves that he had no malignant passions rankling in his bosom, and


it also puts to flight the charges of his enemies of his cruelty and barbarity which had been so often attributed to him. He possessed an extraordinary strength and compass of mind. This was his sheet-anchor of safety in all his trials of an eventful life. He also possessed a frankness, integrity, and honesty of purpose that were always above suspicion by his most bitter enemies. He possessed a firmness of character, a pertinacity of purpose, that made him immovable when his judgment was convinced. His mind was not organized to possess brute obstinacy, but firmness was a most powerful element in his character These eminent traits of character, together with a patriotism and ardent devotion to his country that never were surpassed made him the most popular man in the nation of his day.

I was present in Washington City, on the 4th March, 1837, when he was retiring from office, and Mr. Van Buren inaugurated into the office of president. The whole great assemblage of people gave the greatest honor and respect to the hero of New Orleans, as the masses called him, and little or no attention was bestowed on the president elect, Mr. Van Buren.

The fine, wrongfully imposed on Gen. Jackson by the judge at New Orleans, in 1815, was remitted by an act of Congress. I voted for it, as I considered the General, by virtue of the Constitution, has the power to declare martial-law in his camp, or over the territory, where the necessity of the case requires it, in war. This power is given by the Constitution, and for the time being, the civil-law must yield to this power to declare martial-law. This act of Congress gave the President much satisfaction, as it was the approbation of the nation on his conduct.

The great leader of the Whig party was the distinguished and efficient statesman, Henry Clay, of Kentucky. Many great and powerful characters were arrayed in the Whig and Democratic parties, but Jackson and Clay were the two great leaders of their respective parties. Mr. Clay had been so long the leader that that important position was yielded to him by a kind of common consent. I think he deserved this eminent position. His abilities and great knowledge of mankind, together with his transcendent talents, entitled him to the leadership of the Whig party. He was born in Virginia, but emigrated to Kentucky in very early times. He received in his native State a common classic education, but not of that finished and accomplished character with which some scholars are blessed, but nature gave him the strength and powers of mind that supplied all defects of education. He possessed not only great strength of intellect, but a versatility of talent which enabled him to excel in almost any avocation he adopted. He stood for a long series of years at the head of the bar, as well as a great leader in Congress. The great powers of his mind gave him a high standing in the temple of fame. Intellect of the brightest and


most efficient order was bestowed on him, and he appeared a great beacon-light to his countrymen. His greatest forte, among various other eminent qualities, was the gift of eloquence bestowed on him by nature. He was born with this faculty, and if he had lived in ancient Greece; he might have been fabled with the bees extracting honey from his lips while he was in the cradle. His eloquence was beyond description. A person must be present and hear and see him in some of his extraordinary efforts to realize and appreciate his eloquence. His speeches cannot be conveyed, no more than the description of them, to paper. The brilliant and illuminated countenance of the orator, his eye flashing inspiration, and his tone and gestures, cannot be conveyed to others who were not present at the scene. The argument, the ideas, and the subject-matter of his eloquence may be preserved on paper, but the celestial fire, the inspiration, and the power and effect of eloquence, escape forever as the words fall from the lips of the orator. The written speeches of an eloquent man never do justice to the orator. This is the case with Mr. Clay; his paper-speeches are excellent, but they do not compare with the fervent, brilliant, and captivating speeches as they proceeded, warm and glowing, from the heart of the orator himself.

Mr. Clay possessed great firmness of character as well as his other conspicuous qualities of mind. He possessed in civil pursuits, as Gen. Jackson did in military, a great power to command men. Nature seemed to have made him a leader of men. On many memorable occasions, he displayed this capacity in an eminent degree for the welfare of his country. The Missouri Compromise, the adjustment of the tariff in 1833, and the fugitive-slave-law of Congress, known also as a compromise, all received his powerful influence in Congress, or otherwise it is probable that these important measures would not have passed that body.

There was nothing palliating or vacillating in the character of Henry Clay. He was frank, explicit, and firm in all his movements, and when he took a stand he was immovable. He was an ardent patriot. Every pulsation of his heart beat strong for the welfare of his country, and he lived and died an exalted statesman, of whom the whole nation "delights to honor." I sincerely believe that Andrew Jackson and Henry Clay were two of the greatest men the nation ever produced since the Revolution.

Much has been written and spoken for and against party-spirit — and the minority party generally complains of parties. When the power of self-government is vested in the people, they must discuss and examine into measures of the government, or otherwise self-government is a mere farce. Without some party excitement, these discussions would be languid and


dull. The use of speech, and the press, are guaranteed to the people by the Constitution for this object. Moreover, parties must exist to carry out any great measure, or otherwise it will not succeed. Acting on great principles without concert is like an army moving to battle without organization and without a general. Parties also have great influence on one another, and on the members, to make them responsible, and thereby to cause them to act right.

The two great parties, the Democratic and Whig, have existed in the United States for almost thirty years, and have been divided in politics ever since. The fundamental principles of the parties seem to be founded principally on the different constructions given to the Constitution of the United States. One party, the Democrats, give the Constitution a limited and rigid construction, while the other party, the Whigs, give that instrument a more liberal and extended interpretation. The Whigs contend that the Constitution gives the power to Congress to create banks, and a protective duty on importations, independent of raising a revenue, and to improve the country by making roads and harbors — improving the navigable rivers also — while the Democrats believe that Congress does not possess the power, under the Constitution, to carry out the above-enumerated measures.

Under this view of the Constitution, the Whigs create banks, impose duties on articles imported for protection, and improve the country, harbors, and rivers. The Democrats, generally, as a party, are opposed to these measures, both from policy and the Constitution.

These are some of the measures and the policy that have heretofore divided the parties in the United States; but at this time the rigor of the old parties has considerably subsided, and new issues and principles seem to occupy the country to some extent. The Democrats still retain their original landmarks of party — no banks, few corporations, a hard-money currency, no tariff for protection, free-trade, short sessions of Congress, and economy in the expenditures of the public money. The issues and measures that once divided the Whig and Democratic parties have been generally decided by the people in favor of the Democratic party, which has silenced the Whig party. The parties, and the members of the parties, are as honest and patriotic on one side as they are on the other — both anxious to advance the best interests of the country.


Chapter CI.

Measures in Congress in 1834-5. — The Bank of the United States. — The French Spoliations. — The viva-voce Resolution of the Author. Northern Boundary of Illinois. — Hon. T. Burges.

PRESIDENT JACKSON, in his first annual message in January, 1829, brought before the Nation the subject of the United-States' Bank, and recommended some substitute for it as a deposit for the public money. This message brought the subject of the bank before the people, and the rancor and discussion were kept up until the bank ceased to exist — in the year 1836. When I entered congress, this was one of the main subjects of discussion, and I gave my vote uniformly with the Democratic party against the bank. A report from a bank committee was made to this Congress, which gave rise to great warmth of feelings and many bitter discussions.

The President, although he was extremely popular, was compelled to use the State banks to aid in the downfall of the United-States' Bank. The State banks selected for the deposit of the public money were called the "pet banks," in derision. This warfare was kept up in congress until the bank ceased to exist by its charter, and a new charter was not granted.

Jackson, in his message of 1833, says: "It being established, by unquestionable proof, that the Bank of the United States has been converted into a permanent electioneering machine, it appears to me that the path of duty which the executive department of the government should pursue is not difficult."

In the forepart of 1833, a great combination of talent and influence was formed against Jackson and the Democratic party, headed by Clay, Webster, and Calhoun. Under their banner were arranged, in the senate, Bibb, Clayton, Chambers, Ewing, Freelinghuysen, Leigh, Mangum, Poindexter, Porter, and others; and in the house, the Whigs had Adams, Binney, Archer, Bell, Burges, Choate, Warren, R. Davis, Everett, John Davis, Fillmore, Hardin, McDuffy, Letcher, Peyton, Wise, Vance, Wild, and others, to support their party. To sustain the administration, in the senate were Benton, Forsythe, Grundy, Hugh L. White, Hill, Kane, Wilkins, Wright, King, Rives, Talmadge, and others. In the house were Beardsley, Camberling, Frank, Thomas, Gillett, McKay, Polk, Vanderpool, Wayne, Clay, of Alabama, Hubbard, and others. The discussion lasted three months, and the session received the name of the "panic-session."

Another subject, the French spoliations, occupied much time in the senate, and elicited much debate. The Whig party,


generally, advocated the payment of these claims — as they desired extravagant expenditures of the public money, which would require the government to levy a high tariff, and give protection to the domestic manufactures. The Democrats, mostly, opposed these claims, and all other extravagant expenditures of the public money. These claims were not allowed in congress I believe, while the Democratic party had the ascendancy in that body. They were considered mostly to be fraudulent and spurious.

The first move I made in congress was on the 14th of December, 1834, which was not long after I took my seat there. I introduced the following resolution into the House: "Resolved That hereafter in all elections made by the House of Representatives for officers, the votes shall be given viva voce, each member in his place naming aloud the person for whom he votes."

This resolution was laid over for a few weeks; and when it was taken up, it excited considerable discussion and warmth of feeling. Many speeches were made on the subject, and the first speech I made in congress was on this resolution. The discussion lasted several days, and the principle contained in my resolution was adopted by the House, and remains to this day, I presume, the rule of the House in elections by that body.

I still had much of my old habit of diffidence when I entered congress, and my first address in that body was offered with feelings not pleasant to me. The hall of the house of representatives was so singularly constructed that a person must speak very loud, or otherwise he could not be heard by the members.

A new member is always listened to, which made it the worse for me. I knew that there were many members in the House a long way before me, and also many behind me. I did not know how to modulate my voice so as to be heard, and in my own opinion made a speech unworthy of the occasion. My speech was published in the congressional debates, by Gales & Seaton, and also in the Congressional Globe.

"Mr. Reynolds observed that he had not the least intention of producing an excitement when he had the honor to offer this proposition for the consideration of the House, and he sincerely hoped that none would be now created by it. He was not considered at home a violent party-man, and he condemned excessive party excitement at home or abroad.

"The gentleman from New York, Mr. Fillmore, urged in this discussion Mr. R.'s motives in presenting this resolution. He stated them to be to operate on the election of a public printer. In this allegation, Mr. R. observed that his friend from New York, Mr. Fillmore, was entirely mistaken. He did not entertain any great feeling or interest about the election of a public


printer, and at the time he introduced his resolution he did not even know that there was one to be elected at this session of congress. He had nothing to do with the election of a public printer, and did not care on whom or what printers the resolution would operate. He said he moved it because it was the rule of action of the Legislature of the State of Illinois, in which he lived and had the honor to represent in part, and it was adopted when he was a member of the Legislature of that State, and that it was the republican rule in every representative body. This was the reason he offered it, and hoped it would be sustained by the House. Consequently, the burden of the song by the gentleman from New York, the election of a public printer, was out of the question. It could not, in fact, be discussed on the proposition which is now before the House — ‘sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.’ Let the abstract rule be established, let the republican rule be adopted, and then let it operate on speakers, preachers, printers, and all other officers of the House on whom it ought to operate. Do right in all cases, and let the consequences provide for themselves.

"Mr. R. remarked that as his motives and the election of a public printer were disposed of, he would bring to the consideration of the House part of the 5th section of the 1st article of the Constitution of the United States, which he read, as follows:

"‘Each House shall keep a journal of its proceedings, and from time to time publish the same, excepting such parts as may, in their judgments, require secrecy, and the yeas and nays of the members of either House, on any question, shall, at the desire of one-fifth of those present, be entered on the journal.’

"This is the rule of action in all cases, when it is applicable. It is the supreme law of the land. The object of the Constitution was to preserve a record of the proceedings of Congress, and to give them publicity. This is expressly required on all questions in the proceedings of Congress, and no member of this house will contend that an election is no question. It is the most important question frequently to members of Congress that could be agitated. Mr. R. said he recollected well last summer it was an important question to your humble servant. He appeared often on the stump, before his constituents, and each party candidate and constituent took it for granted that it was a question. Is not the election of a public printer a question also? There is too much discussion about it in this house for it to be no question. Some may say that the rule of action under the provisions of the Constitution has been for a long time different, and ought not to be changed from this mode of balloting. He considered the principle to be just; that whenever we found an error to exist in our proceedings, if those proceedings were as old as Jerusalem, we should change them. It


may be that this provision of the Constitution was never discussed in relation to this subject, and consequently never acted on. If neither an examination nor discussion had been had on this part of the Constitution, the prevailing practice of balloting should not receive much consideration from its antiquity. ‘An ancient error cannot make a modern right.’ The object and meaning of Congress was to give publicity to the proceedings in Congress, and as all elections were questions in which the people were interested, the conclusion is irresistible under the provisions of the Constitution, that the proceedings in all elections should be viva voce and published to the world in the journals.

"It cannot be seriously contended, that under the Constitution, the yeas and nays ought to be used literally in an election, but even this could be done. The candidate proposed for office could be voted for in this language. The voter could say yea or nay to him, and one-fifth of the members may require it. But independent of the express provision of the Constitution, and independent of the spirit and meaning of that instrument, Mr. R. observed that this provision was of such a character, arising from our republican institutions, that it is almost as susceptible of demonstration as any mathematical problem.

"In this republic, the supreme power rests with the people, under such rules and regulations as are prescribed in our constitution and laws. The people are sovereign, and of right must be, while our government continues to exist as a republic. No tyrant or irresponsible lord or representative can rule over us. The people are responsible for their acts to no earthly power, while they remain within the pale of the Constitution and the law of the land. This principle needs no demonstration to an American. It is self-evident to every republican, and I hope I address such. Arising out of this principle, the system of representation must be adopted. It would be folly to suppose that all the people of this widely-extended republic could assemble together to provide for their various wants, and to transact their public business. If they were present they could do no business, the body would be so unwieldy. Hence, resulted the representative form and principle of our government. It is the great improvement in governments which gives the modern the great superiority over the ancient republics. This is the principle above all others in our government, which should be preserved pure and sacred. Any intervening circumstance, although trivial in itself, that tends to injure the purity of elections, or the purity of the representative principle, should be condemned as dangerous to our liberties.

"Judging from the experience of a few years past, Mr. R. said he had arrived at the conclusion that the people of the United States are determined, at all hazards, to preserve the purity of


elections. This is the greatest evidence of the vigor, strength, and long life of our government.

"Next in the order of events is the responsibility of the representative to his constituents. This is as important, and in fact as necessary to be cherished and preserved in its purity, as the election-franchise. It is a yoke-fellow; one will not exist in vigor when the other is in decay and rottenness. They will both rise or fall together, as they both stand on the same political ground. A moment's reflection will satisfy all of the necessity of the responsibility of the representative to his constituents. The very name will show that he is not acting for himself in his official capacity. He acts for others, and to them he is responsible for his official conduct. He should be the mirror to exhibit the sentiments of the people, and, in fact, the miniature-picture of the people. Although I am a great distance from my constituents, and perhaps not one of them will witness any of my official conduct, yet I consider myself bound by the nature of my office, and by my own feelings also, to represent in this house the will and sentiment of the first congressional district of the State of Illinois. Should I disregard the republican sentiments on the subject now before the House, and vote to hide my vote from their examination, I would be taught a lesson through the medium of the ballot-box at home, which would be a warning to me on all future occasions. This, I think, would be my lot, I judge not for others. This principle being established — that the representative is bound to represent the sentiments of his constituents truly and honestly, and that he is responsible for the same — the question then arises, how is this fact to be ascertained?

"The proposition now before the House is nothing more or less than to require the best evidence to ascertain the responsibility of the representative, of which the nature of the case is susceptible. This is the common-sense, and I may add the common-law rule of evidence in our courts of justice. And should it not be extended also to the transactions in the most high and august tribunal in the nation? The record-evidence of each individual's vote, on the journal, is the best calculated to exhibit to the people the acts of their representatives. This is the mode pointed out by the constitution, and it is found by experience to be the best mode to preserve the history of any transaction in courts of justice or in legislative bodies. It is much the best for the representative himself. There can be no perversion of his vote if it is recorded as it falls from his mouth. His constituents, and the world if they please, will know how he acts. Mr. R. said he was satisfied there was no person in this house who would want to hide his vote on any public transaction. The people, as they are sovereign and not responsible to the representive or anybody, have the right to vote as


they please, by ballot or otherwise. The ballot system is the best for the people, and the viva-voce for their representatives. It is idle to contend that the constitution requires the record of proceedings and votes of members on measures to be recorded and not on men in elections. On measures, one-fifth of the members can require the vote to be recorded, and on elections of men to office the same rule and principle should be applied. They are both within the spirit and meaning of the constitution."

The principles contained in my resolution were adopted by the House, and remain the rule of action there to the present time, so far as I recollect.

One of the most grand and sublime spectacles occurred during this session of congress at the capital that was ever witnessed of that character in the United States. At the preceding session of congress information of the death of Gen. La Fayette reached the United States, and a resolution was passed calling on John Q. Adams to deliver an oration on the occasion; and on the 31st day of December, in persuance of previous arrangements, an oration on the life and character of Gen. La Fayette was delivered by Mr. Adams in the hall of the house of representatives. Taking into consideration the subject, the orator, and the audience, the scene was grand and impressive. The subject — The Life and Character of Gen. La Fayette — who so nobly entered the Revolution at a dark period, and so bravely served through that most important struggle for freedom, was great and interesting. John Q. Adams, the ex-president of the United States, a distinguished member of congress from the old Bay State, whose character as a scholar and a literary man was co-extensive with civilization, was the orator, and most nobly did he perform his duty. The audience was Gen. Jackson, the president of the United States, and an immense concourse of people.

During this session of congress, a great and important question was agitated in relation to the northern boundaries of Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois. This subject was before the committees and Congress all that session. It will be recollected that ever since the formation of the government the boundaries of the states and territories have frequently excited much contention, and sometimes almost or quite reached to bloodshed. The State of Ohio at this time, and the Territory of Michigan were in a contest about the northern boundary of Ohio, and not long after Missouri and Iowa were engaged in a violent controversy.

In February, 1835, the bill was before the House to establish the Territory of Wisconsin, and it was reported from the Cornmittee on Territories to be bounded on the South by the State of Illinois. This left the boundary undefined, and I moved an amendment: that the southern boundary of the Territory


should be the line in latitude 42 deg. 30 min. north. This amendment gave rise to much discussion, but was finally adopted into the bill, and became the law. The Hon. John Q. Adams took the lead against my amendment, but it was ably defended by Mr. Binney, of Pennsylvania, Mr. Ben. Hardin, of Kentucky, and Messrs. Vinton, Hamer, and others, of Ohio. My next speech in congress was on this subject, which is also reported in the volume of debates of that day. The act of congress defining the southern boundary of the Territory of Wisconsin settled all controversy on this subject.

When I entered congress the Bank of the United States had many warm and influential friends, but the people were disposed to put it down. This made the bank decline in its moral bearing in congress.

About this time, gold and silver commenced to flow into the country and to take the place of bank-paper. The report of Roger B. Tanney, the secretary of the treasury, for the year 1833, showed the currency and the country were enjoying great prosperity. It may be stated that six millions of specie had been introduced into the United States in one year, and commerce had also increased in a greater proportion. It was considered in twenty months eighteen millions of specie had been introduced into the Union, which not only relieved the people from their mental fears, which the bank had fastened on them, but it did more, it relieved them from their material fears and distresses.

In giving standing and increase to the metallic currency, Col. Benton was an active and able champion, and did much to restore the constitutional currency to the country, which the bank had driven away. Col. Benton, by his efforts to restore the metallic currency, has by the Whigs acquired the name of "Old Bullion," which is a proud honor to him.

In the year 1834, the Bank of the United States died a disconsolate death in Philadelphia, and the stockholders resolved that the bank should make an assignment of its real and personal estate. Thus ended this institution, whose example, I presume, will not soon be imitated.

In this congress was a variety of character, collected from all parts of an extended republic. Among many extraordinary characters in congress was Hon. Tristram Burgess, of Rhode Island, who was dreaded by most of the members in the House. This gentleman in 1834, was aged; yet the fire and vigor of youth frequently burst out from him like streams of burning lava. His years appeared to be upward of sixty, and his age and intense study marked his visage with unmistakable impressions. His person was tall and emaciated, and slightly inclined by age. He was blessed with a venerable and dignified deportment; but his features wore the severe and caustic appearance


of a store well filled with double distilled invective and sarcasm. He was an eminent scholar and orator, whose fiery and scathing speeches dashed thunderbolts against his adversaries. He was a man of more genius than judgment, and possessed an acute and refined sensibility. He was gifted with a fluent and efficient elocution, and his invectives, in which he excelled, and used so liberally, were of the most refined and chaste character, that cut deep and laid dead at his feet his victim, without vulgarity or mangled wounds. His speeches were always short, and the last sentence generally sounded the death-knell of his opponent. He used the most chaste and classic language, as if he desired the death of his adversary to be caused by a golden ball. His ideas, although they were conveyed in the most pure and chaste language, seemed to be steeped in gall and bitterness, and they flowed from the orator like flashes of lightning, and often with the same effect.

Whenever this singular man would rise in the House to speak, the whole noisy assembly would come to a profound silence and witness the scene without a smile. No one liked to see a snowbird devoured by an eagle. When delivering his philippics he appeared the personification of the most bitter satire, which flowed with a lightning speed from an inexhaustable storehouse.

This gentleman possessed a high standing of this character at Washington City, and was the only person, it was said in olden times, that could equal and surpass the celebrated John Randolph, of Roanoke. I never saw any one that could equal Mr. Burgess in scathing satire and invective. It seemed to me he had turned his extraordinary talents and fine education into this channel alone, and in it he excelled any one I ever saw.

I witnessed many of the efforts of Lord Brougham, in the British House of Peers, which were eloquent, learned, and satirical, but were not so refined or polished as those of the American orator. Burgess seemed to mix honey with his language, but Brougham kneeded his with brickbats and macadamized rocks.

In his habits Mr. Burgess seemed secluded, reserved, and taciturn; nothing of the bold, obtrusive, or assuming was seen in him. He was grave, dignified, and rather austere in his deportment. He did not seem to enjoy social or jovial society, but his pleasures seemed to exist in his own breast, and that of a melancholy and morose character. He appeared to labor under disgust and dislike to mankind, and, whenever an opportunity occurred, he raised his flood-gates and torrents flowed that swept away all rivalship. What a misfortune that such splendid talents and classical education should be turned into such a channel. To reverse the scene, and this gentleman would have occupied in congress one of the highest places in that body.


Chapter CII.

Executive Influence. — Proscription for Opinion's Sake. — Executive Power of Removals from Office. — The Convention System. — The Life of President Jackson Assailed.

The proper exercise of executive patronage, and the removal of incumbents from office, present to the philosophic statesman, a question of grave importance, and of extremely difficult solution. The nature of our government, and, in fact, all others, is such that great power is given to the executive and a check on him is an election every four years, public opinion, and the senate.

The great question was presented to Thomas Jefferson, when he was president of the United States, more than half a century since, to decide if a person should be removed from office for an honest difference of opinion. That great statesman and profound philosopher, gave the subject his utmost attention, and most scrutinizing judgment. He settled the principle at last to his own satisfaction that "each party, the Federalists and Republicans, should have a share of the ministerial offices, the control of each branch of the service being in the hands of the administration."

On the 23d March, 1801, Mr. Jefferson wrote to Gov. Giles, of Virginia, that good men, to whom there is no objection but a difference of political opinion, practised on only so far as a private citizen will justify, are not proper subjects of removal, except in the case of attorneys and marshals. Removal from office for cause, has been justified by all since the commencement of the government.

Mr. Jefferson wrote again to Mr. Lincoln, his attorney-general, and says: "Every officer of government may vote at elections according to his own conscience, but we should betray the cause committed to our charge, were we to permit the influence of official patronage to overthrow that cause."

Mr. Jefferson laid the rule down as above stated, and so did Gen. Jackson, in the same spirit, but neither of them practised precisely in accordance with it. Jefferson did not remove enough of officers, and, perhaps, Jackson too many.

Col. Benton, in his book, states that Mr. Jefferson informed him in 1824, that he never did his party justice by not giving them the proper share of officers.

The northern section of the Union, and particularly the State of New York, has adopted more the system of proscription for political opinion than the South. Gen. Jackson never entirely adopted the system, that "the spoils belonged to the victors."


When this is the system of action, it seems that men's political opinions, although honest, are not at all respected. Although honest, a mistake of judgment makes a man culpable, and liable to be removed from office. On the other hand, it is wrong for a party to be weighted down with their enemies.

The principle has been gaining for years, that the party in power has the right, and they generally exercise it, to remove their political opponents from office. This system, to a great extent, makes politics a mechanical operation, working for office without principle.

Executive patronage has been a fruitful subject of discussion for twenty years past, and has always been assailed by the party opposed to the administration.

In 1826, during the administration of Mr. Adams, attempts were made to circumscribe the executive patronage, and much intelligent debate was administered without any enactment. The revenue and the officers increased so rapidly that the power and patronage of the chief magistrate became overwhelming in a few years.

In 1835, a partizan debate was conducted in the senate for several weeks, on the subject of executive patronage, and the result was, that the President, by virtue of the constitution, had the power of removals at his pleasure. The position urged with so much talent and efficiency by Clay, Webster, Calhoun, and other Whig members, was, that the President be required to state his reasons on which the removals were made.

Mr. Clay proposed an amendment, that the Senate must agree in the removals, as well as the appointments, before an officer could be ousted from office. To this proposition, and to defend the constitution, President Jackson entered a protest, and in it discussed the constitutional question with great ability. In this discussion were arrayed on both sides extraordinary ability and talent, and the most bitter and severe partizan warfare was displayed in it. The decision was by the public and congress, that the President had the power of removing at pleasure, being responsible for his actions to public opinion. Connected with this subject is party-discipline and organization. In excited party-times party-organization is considered almost as essential as the party-principles themselves.

About the year 1835, at Vandalia, the seat of government of the State of Illinois, the subject of party-organization and the convention-system came up in a public discussion, and although no direct discussion was made, yet the system commenced in the north of the State about this time.

In 1837, Stephen A. Douglas was nominated in the northern district of the State for congress, and the same year, James W. Stephenson for governor. The system of conventions was never very popular in the southern section of the State, but the


emigrants from New York and New England to the northern section of the State, brought the custom with them, and made it popular in the section of the State where they settled.

To the system there are objections, and also advantages. It affords party-jugglers and leaders great power, and takes that power from the people. Where the organization is complete, file nomination is an election, and the constitutional election is a mere ceremony and idle pageantry. The system makes an election with the party which, by party-discipline, stands also for the main constitutional election. If the people would attend their preparatory elections, and be governed by the same rules and regulations, as other elections, then the system would be just and proper. This mode was adopted in a late election in the State of Missouri. All the forms and regulations of an ordinary election was observed with the party to select a party-candidate. When a nomination is an election, the principles of free government require the same purity and the same regulations of the election as are observed at the constitutional election. When the people are virtuous and intelligent, and observe township and county elections, the convention-system is just and proper to unite the party on the great and leading principles; but when the people do not attend to the convention elections and movements, the power gets into the hands of politicians, and then the most forward and unprincipled men govern the whole election. The people in such cases, are, like chessman on a board, moved by the leaders.

In favor of conventions it is said, that without them a party cannot be concentrated; cannot be united for action, and cannot carry out the principles of the party. This is true, and this is the reason they are submitted to at all. Another paliation is, that frequently the candidates of the same party are about equal in merit, and it matters not much to the party or public, which of them is selected in the convention. The candidates are all slaughtered except one.

In large districts of country for the election of the governor of a State, or the president of the United States, if parties at all exist, I cannot see any other system that will answer the purposes, although so many formidable objections exist against conventions.

At the funeral of the Hon. Mr. Davis, of South Carolina, an event took place which excited a deep sensation throughout the country. It was an attempt to murder Jackson. In the midst of a large assemblage of people, in the rotunda of the Capitol, on the 30th of January, 1835, a small, lean-looking man attempted to shoot two pistols at the President, with intent to kill him. I was only a few feet before the latter, in the funeral procession, going out of the east door of the building, and it seemed to me, from the loud reports, that both pistols had been


discharged. Upon turning around, I saw a dense crowd near the scene of action. The culprit had already been thrown or knocked down. Jackson had his cane raised to strike, and was forcing his way toward him. Mr. Inge, a very large man, and a member of congress from Tennessee, was about to use violence to the offender, when many of us cried out "Don't kill him!" The feeling of resentment was so great that I feared violence would be used toward the prisoner. In a moment, however, the passion of the friends of Jackson subsided, and the young man was in no immediate danger, although he attempted to murder the President, an old, infirm man. Gen. Jackson was walking at the time between Secretary Woodbury and Mr. Dickinson, secretary of the navy. The offender was given over to the civil officers and confined for examination. The crowd was so thick around the prisoner that I did not see him except on the floor of the rotunda, but he was calm and seemed to disregard the transaction. Neither of the pistols were fired, but the caps exploded with such noise and in such quick succession that I supposed both had been discharged. Either of the loads in the barrels of the pistols would have caused death. This affiair gave rise to much private discussion, and fears were entertained that attempts on the life of the President might occur again. The examination of the accused, however, explained the whole transaction, and further alarms for the safety of the chief magistrate were dispelled. The name of the unfortunate and misguided man was Richard Lawrence, an Englishman, and a housepainter. Physicians and others examined him and found him to be a more fit subject for the lunatic asylum than the gallows. Such strange species of insanity occur at rare intervals in the world, and this is another proof of the frailty and imperfection of mankind.

Almost a similar case occurred in England, in 1800. An insane man, named Hadfield, shot at the king in the theatre, and was acquitted on the ground of mental derangement. In more ancient times, Henry IV., king of France, was killed in the street by a maniac.

To return to Lawrence: On his trial before Judge Cranch he seemed to be careless of himself, and did not cross-examine the witness and gave no explanation of his conduct. It was quickly ascertained that the prisoner was insane, and the examination dropped. Lawrence had attended the debates in Congress, and had heard so, much said in the panic session, that he really supposed Jackson was the cause of the distress in the country. He was poor himself, and out of employment. He imagined the country was in a ruined condition, and as he thought Jackson was the cause of it, he would remove the evil by killing him. He said his family had been deprived of the crown of England, and that he would obtain it before he died. The circumstance


of both pistols refusing to shoot was so singular that it caused many to believe that it was an interposition of Divine Providence to save the life of a great man. The same kind of a story had before been circulated — that an Indian chief shot several times at Gen. Washington in battle, but the balls would not kill him, and that Providence had saved him to perform the great and noble deeds he afterward achieved. Enlightened public opinion and the intelligence of the age have discarded these ideas of providential interpositions, and agree that certain immutable laws of nature, established by Divine wisdom, govern the universe, and that they never have been, and never will be, changed to screen any person or thing from their uniform and universal operation.

Chapter CIII.

The Eulogy of Mr. Adams on Gen. La Fayette. — Sketch of Ex-President John Q. Adams.

AT the previous session of congress, the death of General La Fayette reached the United States, and a resolution passed congress respectfully requesting the Hon. John Q. Adams to deliver in congress, at the next session, an eulogy on the life and character of this great man.

On the 31st of December, 1834, in pursuance of previous arrangements, Mr. Adams delivered an address of great merit and ability on the life and character of the deceased hero of the Revolution. I was present, and saw the hall and galleries of the house of representatives crowded with a distinguished and intelligent audience. The members of the senate entered the hall in a body, and the ministers of foreign powers, the President, judges of the supreme court, and many other distinguished individuals attended. The occasion; the transactions of the Revolution; the hero of many battles, Gen. La Fayette; the orator, the Ex-President of the United States and one of the most learned men of the age, addressing in the capitol of a great republic such an audience, was one of the greatest and imposing spectacles that was ever witnessed in the United States.

This assembly, for the high standing of many of the individuals composing it, and for the general intelligence and the brilliant appearance, surpassed any I ever saw before or after, although I have witnessed many both in Europe and America. In this assembly were six individuals who had been or were afterwards elected to the presidency: John Q. Adams, Andrew Jackson, John Tyler, James K. Polk, Millard Fillmore, and Franklin Pearce.


During all my services in congress, which was eight sessions, the Hon. John Quincy Adams was a member of the house, and his character and services deserve a passing notice.

John Quincy Adams, a distinguished member from the State of Massachusetts, although he possessed great and eminent talents, was not modelled exactly on the same system as any other member. His person was of the medium size, but thick compact, and robust. He stood and walked erect, although he had passed his eightieth year, and seemed to possess his mental faculties unimpaired. He was not possessed of any grace or beauty of person, but displayed a kind of formal dignity, rather of an austere and unsocial character. His person seemed to bid defiance to time and hardship, and was formed for utility and severe mental labor. His head was bald and remarkably large; and if phrenology were to speak, he possessed, what his actions through life demonstrated, an extraordinary development of mental power, together with no small degree of propelling force. The great and leading traits of his character were a sober, solid judgment, integrity, and patriotism. On these great pillars, he reared a temple of fame that will descend to posterity with glory and honor to him and the nation. He was what the common phrase calls "a passionate man," but would generally restrain this passion, except on fit occasions, as he conceived, then it would flow in deep and strong currents that generally overwhelmed his adversary. He possessed ambition of a boundless character, and it was often a great effort of his judgment to subdue it. His firmness bordered on obstinacy, and reason and argument were often applied to him without success, when his passions were enlisted in the case.

With these great and distinguishing traits of character, John Q. Adams was a worthy descendant of an illustrious ancestry, and most nobly has he sustained the glory and honor of his pilgrim forefathers. He always appeared to me to be a true representative of the daring and intrepid pilgrims of the May-Flower, who encountered every danger and hardship for liberty. He stood eminently at the head of intelligence and knowledge; distinguishing, as many do, knowledge from wisdom. His opportunities were good, and he embraced them with ardor and enthusiasm. His illustrious father, John Adams, was one of the master-spirits of the age in which he lived, and was to his son always an open seminary of learning.

John Q. Adams attended the best seminaries of learning in both Europe and America, and was one of the most profound scholars and most learned men of the age. He failed most signally in his attempt to court the muses. His poetry is below mediocrity, but his speeches were lucid, argumentative, and grammatical, either when spoken or written. They smelt of the midnight lamp more than of genius, but he labored


them into strong and irresistible arguments by the force of his safe and sound judgment, He was a Whig partizan, only as he considered it right to advance the best interests of the country. On all great and national subjects, he rose above party with a true American heart, and sustained his country with a fervor and a passion of patriotism that no Revolutionary father ever excelled.

Mr. Randolph, of Roanoke, said many truths of Mr. Adams in an electioneering speech of 1828. Mr. Randolph says: "The talent which enables a man to write a book, or to make a speech, has no more relation to the leading of an army, or a senate, than it has to the dressing of a dinner. The talent which fits a man for either office is a talent for the management of men; a mere dialectician never had and never will have it; each requires the same degree of courage, though of different kinds."

Randolph further, said: "Who believes that Washington could write as good a book or report as Jefferson, or make as able a speech as Hamilton? Who is there that believes that Cromwell would have made as good a judge as Lord Hale? No, sir! these learned and accomplished men find their proper places under those who are fitted to command, and to command them amongst the rest."

Randolph said it was the easiest matter for a great man to write a book. The next difficult thing was to make a speech, but the most difficult matter was to act right. Adams could write a good book; Clay could make a splendid speech; but Jackson could act right. The principle here laid down, and also the application, is correct.

Adams' great age, extraordinary life, and high positions in the public service, gave him a great standing in congress, and particularly on the subject of international law and our foreign relations. He was strongly impressed with the great principles of religion, and was a member of the Unitarian Church at the time of his death. In November, 1846, he experienced the first shock of paralysis, and on the 21st of February, 1848, at the moment he was about to address the speaker, another stroke of the fatal disease visited him. He lingered to the 23d, and expired in the speaker's room, in the capitol of the United States. The last words he spoke were: "This is the end of earth: I am content." Thus closed the career of one of the most learned and the most distinguished characters that enlightened the nation since the Revolution.


Chapter CIV.

The Military Academy at West Point.

DURING all the time that I was in congress, the Military Academy at West Point, in the State of New York, received much discussion in both branches of congress. The institution was unpopular with the people of Illinois, and on all proper occasions in the State, I gave it my unqualified condemnation, and in congress I carried out these views. President Jackson, Col. Richard M. Johnson, and many other distinguished characters were friendly to it; and the latter informed me often, that he saw in the war of 1812, many brave and worthy men destroyed for the want of the proper military science in the army. The extraordinary success of our army in Mexico, showing the importance of military science, has caused me to think more favorably of the Military Academy at West Point, and has brought me to the conclusion that military science must exist in the army. Without the proper and necessary science in an army, it is a mob and rabble, that is neither efficient nor honorable.

The act of Congress passed in Washington's administration, in 1794, provides the proper remedy. The cadets, under this act, were selected, at the discretion of the President, from the privates in the army, and instructed in the higher branches of artillery and engineering, and nothing more. At that day all the drills and training were performed in the open field. This system would encourage good young men to join the army, and thereby the material would be improved. The instruction at the West-Point Academy was confined to the science of artillery and engineering, and nothing more.

The act of Congress of 1812, and the construction given to it, has remodelled and changed the institution entirely. At present, the cadets are never in the ranks, and are at no time privates. They are not like the privates under the act of 1794, promoted by merit, but are placed in this academy by the members of congress without any knowledge of their military merit, or inclination for a military life.

In the army, when it numbered 6000 strong, in one year 1450 deserted. Something is radically wrong when such large numbers desert. It is stated, that there is not a government in Europe that pay so little regard to the rights of the people, in this respect, as is practised in this institution. Officers in all governments of Europe can rise from the ranks, and the mother country, old England, has given to the world an illustrious example.


In Great Britain, a return shows that from 1830 to 1847, the numbers of citizens was 1266 who received military offices. 446 were appointed from the ranks, and 473 from the Royal College, which answers nearly to the Military Academy at West Point. These appointments are exclusive of those purchasing commissions, which swells the list against the military schools.

In France, twenty-three marshals rose from the ranks. Ney, Massena, Oudinot, Murat, Soult, and Bernadot were among the number. Most of the statistics in the above sketch I received from Col. Benton, which are presented in his able chapter on the Military Academy at West Point. I made many speeches in congress on this subject, to correct the evils existing in both the system and the practice of that institution. Many of my addresses were published, which will show my sentiments on the subject.

Within "MY OWN TIMES," the State of Texas commenced its first American settlement. Its progress, its independence as a government, and its annexation to the United States as an independent state of the confederacy: all these extraordinary movements — the settlement of the country under the Mexican government; its independence and its annexation to the United States, occurred in a little more than thirty years.

In 1836, I voted in congress for the resolution declaring Texas an independent government, and in 1845, it was admitted into the Union as an independent State. In no country on earth is or has been such extraordinary progress as is witnessed in the United States.

Moses Austin, the founder of Texas, was a native of Connecticut, and emigrated first to Virginia, and then to Upper Louisiana in the year 1797. He settled in the mining district, under the Spanish government, and worked the lead mines west of St. Genevieve, Missouri. It was in this district where his son, Stephen F. Austin, was born. The father, having obtained from the Mexican government a large grant of land in the present State of Texas, emigrated there in 1823. This colony soon increased from the United States by those who were generally courageous, intelligent, and energetic citizens.

Texas contains fine soil and climate, which induced emigration to it from all parts of the Union, and also from Europe. The country was a state in the Mexican republic, and when the government of Mexico was changed in old Mexico from a republic to a despotic government, Texas refused to submit to the tyranny of usurpation, and took up arms to defend her rights and liberty. After many engagements, and some carnage of the Americans, the memorable battle of San Jacinto was fought in May, 1836, wherein seven hundred and fifty Americans killed six hundred Mexicans, and took the same number prisoners, with the President, Gen. Santa Anna himself. The


Americans had only six men killed and twenty wounded. This victory was achieved under the command of Gen. Sam. Houston, the young man who was at the seminary of the Rev. Isaac Anderson, in East Tennessee, in the year 1810.

Sometime after the battle of San Jacinto, in 1836, a resolution passed both houses of congress, recognizing the independence of Texas. I voted for the resolution, and have often witnessed the flag of Texas, the "Lone Star," as evidence of her independence.

Not ten years thereafter, I got up a mass-meeting — a public gathering of the people — held in the court-house in Belleville, in the fall of the year 1843, and passed resolutions urging on Congress the annexation of Texas. I believe this was the first meeting and public expression of opinion for the annexation of Texas that was held in the United States.

The presidential election embraced the subject of the annexation of Texas considerably in the West, and James K. Polk was mainly supported on this question in many sections of the country. During his administration, and in "MY OWN TIMES," Texas was admitted into the Union as a free and independent State.

Chapter CV.

Further Proceedings in Congress. — The Admission of the Territories of Michigan and Arkansas into the Union as States. — A Torpedo in the Potomac River. — A Visit to Washington's Tomb. — The Key of the Bastile of France. — A Tide-Water Joke on the Author. — The Author in Congress Seven Years and Eight Sessions. — The General Duties the Author Performed in Congress.

TOWARD the close of the session of congress in the year 1836, both the constitutions of Michigan and Arkansas were presented to congress, and solicited admission into the Union as States.

The President presented the subject to the senate, and Thomas H. Benton took charge of the State of Michigan, and James Buchanan that of Arkansas. It seemed that many of the Northern members, and some of the Southern also, desired to pass both States into the Union at the same time. One was a free-state and the other a slave-state. The subject of slavery, and the common party-spirit of Whiggery and Democracy, seemed to be mixed up together in this transaction. It was considered a Jackson, or democratic measure, and many Whigs and Democrats took sides on the subject, independent of the question of slavery. I considered it right to admit both States into the Union, and I acted with the administration party


throughout all the contest. The bills admitting both States into the Union passed the senate by a vote of only six in opposition.

Both bills came to the house together, and were made the special order of the day for the 8th of June; and congress was to adjourn on the 4th of July thereafter. The Whigs, it seemed to me, labored to defeat the admission of both States into the Union on account of their bitter opposition to the administration of Gen. Jackson, while other members opposed both for the slavery contained in the constitution of Arkansas. Some opposed both, because the people of the two Territories formed their constitutions without a previous act of congress.

Both bills were referred to the committee of the whole, and were discussed for the space of twenty-five hours, without the committee rising, or taking much or any refreshments whatever. On the 9th of June, the house went into committee of the whole at 10 o'clock, and did not rise until eleven the next day. During this session, many times during the night there was no quorum, and a call of the house was ordered. I well recollect the officers bringing in members, and of hearing their witty excuses.

On the morning of the tenth of June, the Hon. Mr. McKennon, of Pennsylvania, when we were all tired and exhausted, urged Mr. Wise to cease his opposition, and permit the bills to be reported to the house. This was agreed to, and the house at last passed both bills with large majorities. The States of Michigan and Arkansas were both admitted into the Union in 1836.

In 1842, I saw in the Potomac River, near the city of Washington, a schooner blown to atoms by a torpedo. An immense number of citizens were present witnessing the exhibition. The members of both houses of congress, the President, his cabinet, foreign ministers, and a great many strangers from various parts of the Union. The machine, the galvanic battery, was erected five miles down the river, on the west side, near the city of Alexandria. A quantity of powder was placed under the schooner, in the water, and a wire was extended from the battery to the powder under the vessel. The powder was ignited by the battery, through the wire, and exploded. The operators at the battery told the time that they would ignite the powder, and they did so at the precise time they had designated.

I was not far off from the vessel, and I saw the fire, smoke, water, and spray, all rise at the same time, and envelope the schooner in the fire, water, and smoke. A considerable surface of water with the vessel was blown up, with the force and speed of lightning, high in the air, and fragments of the vessel fell down on the water for some time. The schooner was blown to atoms, and the water of the river violently agitated. I thought


then, and still think, that no vessel of an enemy, in time of war, will ever enter our harbors, as this torpedo would have destroyed the largest ship that ever sailed the ocean. The scientific engineers who performed this great feat were from Connecticut, as I understood.

In May, 1840, a party, mostly members of congress and their families, visited the residence of Gen. Washington, on the Potomac. I made one of the party, and spent most of the day in examining the house and premises of this extraordinary man. His residence is on the high bluff of the Potomac, seven or eight miles below the city of Alexandria, in Virginia. The mansion is a frame building, two stories high, and at each end are small houses added to it, for offices, I presume. The yard before the front door was large, and surrounded with houses for servants. The venerable building itself displayed nothing like splendor or magnificence; but comfort, and a neat, plain residence, appeared to be consulted in the construction and management of the house and premises.

The house of the general was erected on a high bluff of the Potomac, two or three hundred feet above the water, and enjoyed a beautiful prospect of the country and the river. The old vault that first contained the remains of Washington was abandoned, and the body placed in another of finer architecture. All spectators gaze with admiration and profound respect and gratitude on the sepulchre of this great and good man. Many of the visitors obtained pieces of the wood of the old coffin containing the body, and preserve them as interesting relics.

The key of the Bastile in France, when the people of that country destroyed that prison, was given to Gen. Washington for safe keeping. The key was placed in a glass case, and hung up at the door of the general's mansion, so that all could see it The sight of it forced on my mind the horrid imprisonments in the Bastile by the monarchs of France, and the honor given the United States of being the fit repository of freedom and such an interesting relic.

My friends enjoyed a good joke on me in relation to the tidewater. I was walking with a friend of mine on Pennsylvania Avenue, in the city of Washington, and remarked that a rain must have fallen toward the head of a small stream that runs through Washington, as the water had been up in the creek a foot or two, and had fallen. My friend laughed heartily, and informed me that it was the tide. I did not know that I had reached tide-water.

I was in congress seven years, and exerted during that time every energy I possessed, both of mind and body, to advance the interests of the people. To perform the duties of a member of congress is exceedingly laborious, and requires much hard work. I had in a book the names of all the principal,


influential, and reading men in my district, no matter whether they were my political friends or not, and I flooded them and the district with public documents and speeches.

I always sustained the franking privilege of members, for the benefit of the public. It is one of the most important duties of a member of congress to distribute among the people proper public documents and speeches.

The business in the departments at Washington City of claims, and other matters for the people, demand also of a member much time and labor, and it received it from me. I was considered, after Col. Richard M. Johnson, of Kentucky, among the most working members in the departments. I was in the Black-Hawk war, and many claims arising out of that war were sent to me to have adjusted in Washington. Another considerable labor was so many acquaintances of members to be presented to the President, particularly when Gen. Jackson was in Office. This duty occupied much time of a member.

The necessary and official correspondence a member has with his constituents gives him much labor, and is very important to both parties. I have often received fifteen or twenty letters at a time, though not daily, which were answered in due time.

These, and many other labors, are independent of the duties in the halls of legislation. A member must be well posted up on the political news of the times, and in fact all other floating information, or otherwise he will make an inefficient representative. General political knowledge of the ancient parties, and in fact a general knowledge of political science, and the forms of ancient and modern governments, a member must possess, or otherwise he will make a ridiculous exhibition in congress, particularly if he attempts to address the house. In such a large body there is much talent, and if a person does not keep even with the masses of members, in talents and information, he had better have remained at home. To keep up with the times, a member must read incessantly. Reading the papers I performed frequently when a long, prosy speech was being delivered in congress.

I was, during eight sessions of congress — one being a called session, in 1840 — absent from congress scarcely one day, either by sickness or otherwise; and the journals will also show that I very rarely missed giving a vote during all that long period of service. The congress generally met at twelve o'clock, and before that hour the office business was performed in the departments. Much business was also performed by members in committees. I was for some time the chairman of the committee on the public lands, which required much attention to business, and much labor, as all the Western States had a great interest in this subject. I was also at times on the committee of roads and canals, which required much labor. Most of the business


of legislation in congress is performed by the committees, which gives them much labor and responsibility. It is also the duty of a member of congress to make many official visits on certain public occasions, and to attend official dinners. He must be on friendly and honorable terms with the public officers and President, or otherwise he cannot transact his official business with justice to his constituents.

Many subjects had my particular attention and energies, be they great or small, in congress. One subject, the establishment of marine hospitals on the Western waters, I labored on for years, and made and published many speeches on the occasion. My district being on the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers, was greatly interested in the subject. I sincerely believe my efforts had some effect in the accomplishment of this measure. I showed the amount of commerce on the Western waters and the number of men employed in it. I asserted in congress, and the facts warranted it, that more wealth and commerce was floated on the Mississippi in 1840 than on any other river on the globe. The public lands also received much of my services in congress. I made on this subject many speeches, which were published. At "MY TIMES" in congress, the public lands were hoarded up more than at present. We procured the passage of the pre-emption law, which gives a person the pre-emption of one year on the public lands.

Another subject I labored for considerably, and it failed in congress, about "MY TIMES," and that was the "National Road." The Democratic party did not foster it, as it contravened their fundamental principles. I advocated all the time the location of the road to Alton, in Illinois, according to the instructions of the general assembly of the State. The establishment of an armory on the Western waters was also a favorite measure with me in congress. I urged on congress, by many addresses, the subject, and I believe my efforts did the measure some service. An armory was established at Memphis, Tennessee.

During all "MY OWN TIMES" in congress, I acted rigidly with the Democratic party, and no complaint was ever made at home or abroad, by friend or foe, on account of my votes on party politics, so far as I recollect. A member of congress has very little standing in that body who vascillates from one side of party politics to the other in excited party times.

The preceding few chapters in this work contain only a skeleton of "MY TIMES" in congress. A full history would require a larger volume than the present; but I presume enough is presented in this sketch to show the general outlines of the proceedings in congress, and my humble services in that body.

I used economy in my expenses in Washington City, or otherwise I would have been, like at least half the members of congress, in debt at the end of each session. The expenses at the


seat of government of the United States for living are heavy. The money expended on the printing of speeches and documents is also heavy. Economy at Washington City is more necessary, perhaps, than at any other city in the Union.

Chapter CVI.

The Author Marries in the District of Columbia. — Out of Congress Two Years. — The Lovejoy Riot at Alton.

Having completed "MY OWN TIMES" in congress, I return to the passing events in the State of Illinois, which are worthy of history.

In connection with my services in congress, it is proper to state that a hiatus of two years occurred between the 3d of March, 1837, and the 3d of March, 1839, that I was not a member. I remained after the adjournment of congress on the 4th in the city of Washington until the 11th of July, 1836, and did not return to my district to canvass it before the election in August in the same year, and my talented and popular opponent, Mr. Snyder, was elected.

I became acquainted with a lady in the District of Columbia, and we, "on consideration of mutual love and affection," married. The same ties bind us in matrimonial happiness to the present time. Posterity will have an unsettled account against us for having added nothing, AS YET, to the great reservoir of the human family.

The riot at Alton, wherein Lovejoy lost his life, and another person was killed, is the most unaccountable transaction that has occurred in Illinois for many years. This tragedy was enacted in one of the most enlightened and intelligent communities in the State, where peaceable and law-loving population had the ascendancy, and where the Christian principles and the various Christian churches seemed to be triumphant, and yet blood was wantonly shed, after weeks and months reflection on the subject before the act was consummated. This transaction proves that man is the most mysterious and unfathomable being of God's creation, and, at times, he enters into vagaries that establishes the fact that reason and reflection are for the moment cast aside and the wild passions of his nature run riot for a season.

The following narrative of the Lovejoy riot is collected from various sources, which I presume may be relied on as correct.

The Rev. Elijah P. Lovejoy was a native of New England, and was a man of talent, extraordinary energy, and pertinacity. He was a preacher of the gospel, and was a member of the Presbyterian church.

In the year 1837, he came to Alton from St. Louis, Missouri,


and consulted with his friends and the people generally if it would be advisable for him to start an abolition paper in Alton. It seems that his visit to Alton, and his consultation with the people on the above subject, put the whole community in a state of an intense excitement and feeling. This violence of feeling was increased by the rumors, which were then believed, and not contradicted to this hour, that he had previously attempted to establish his press at Cincinnati, Louisville, and St. Louis, but at none of these places received any encouragement, and at St. Louis, was repulsed with violence or threats of violence. These statements inflamed the people the more, as it was considered disrespectful to Alton to permit his press to be established there when it could not be established in these other cities. A few men only encouraged Lovejoy to establish his press in Alton, but the masses of the people, among whom were the most intelligent and worthy citizens of the place, desired him in friendship not to attempt to set up an abolition paper in Alton. A large mass-meeting of the people was called; all were invited to attend, and many of the friends of Lovejoy did attend.

The convention of the people passed resolutions remonstrating and beseeching Lovejoy not to establish an abolition press in Alton. These resolutions breathed the spirit of firmness, yet mild and persuasive, stating that the consequences of his persevering in his enterprise would be serious and perhaps disastrous to him, A committee was appointed by the meeting to expostulate with Lovejoy, and dissuade him from his undertaking. On this committee were some of the friends of Lovejoy and his cause. The committee urged on him to desist from his purpose more for fear of the consequences to himself than for fear of the press and the cause. This large public meeting knew that the consequences would be fatal to him if he persisted, and cautioned him and his friends accordingly.

He agreed with the committee not to establish an abolition paper in Alton, but a religious one. The committee reported this agreement to the meeting, which was satisfactory, and many of the meeting supported his religious journal.

Under this arrangement, he started a weekly paper, and for some weeks continued it as a religious journal. But in a short time, disregarding his arrangement, he commenced to publish abolition doctrines. This course of the paper was evidently against the agreement, and dissatisfied the community. The people still considered the committee organized to act, and requested them to call on Lovejoy, as they had before. They had an interview with him, and found his views on the subject considerably changed. He had, after the first agreement for him to publish a religious paper, published the whole proceedings, and his agreement, in his journal. He conversed with the committee in a friendly manner, but was emphatic and


decisive. He said he respected the committee as respectable and worthy citizens, representing the people of Alton, but he did not recognize them or their views in relation to the course of action he would pursue with his paper. His answer was also published in his journal and the proceedings of the committee.

His paper, The Alton Observer, after this interview with the committee, assumed still more ultra views of abolition, and continued so for one or two months. These bitter and scathing publications became worse and more offensive every day to the citizens of Alton, and the people commenced again to be agitated and excited. After much agitation in the public mind and discussion, the citizens became furious, enraged, and almost frantic.

At night, the citizens of Alton, in large numbers, without distinction, entered the office of Lovejoy, although he was not present, or knew it, and broke the press and cast it into the Piasa Creek. The type was scattered about in every direction. This movement of the masses created great excitement and agitation in Alton. Lovejoy and his friends came to the office in the morning and saw what was done. He and his friends, in a cool, calm manner, decided to purchase another press and publish another abolition paper in Alton. It was several weeks, or perhaps months before the new press could be procured, but it did arrive, and was lodged in Col. Bodkin's warehouse. As soon as the citizens of the city knew the fact that the press was in the store of Bodkin, the next night they assembled en masse and destroyed the second press, type, and apparatus. They cast the whole concern into the river. Next morning another excitement raged still more bitter and alarming. It seemed now to assume the spirit of frenzy, and blood must be shed.

Not more than fifty men were willing to sustain Lovejoy in the crisis the affairs were then assuming, and to risk their lives with him in the crusade.

Next morning, Lovejoy was heard to say "I will start another paper, no matter what the consequence may be." After the lapse of two or three weeks, the third press reached Alton for Lovejoy, and it was lodged in Garay's store. The citizens assembled and destroyed it also.

All this time the excitement was still continued and increased to a perfect tornado. After sometime spent in procuring the fourth press, it and apparatus reached Alton. The citizens had organized and had a watch out at the wharf to give notice when the fourth press would arrive. It came on the Missouri Fulton, about 4 o'clock in the morning. The people had retired to bed, and the watch could not rally enough to oppose the landing of the interdicted article. It was landed and lodged in the fourth story of Godfrey & Gilman's warehouse. A furious excitement prevailed all the next day in Alton, and both parties were


organized, one to destroy the press and the other to defend it. The Lovejoy party organized a company, and elected Mr. Harnard captain. The company contained about fifty members, and were well armed.

The citizens were consulting all day, and had decided on no particular system, but the press was to be destroyed at all events. The Lovejoy party at dark assembled, well armed, in the house where the press was lodged to defend it.

The citizens in great force assembled soon after dark before the door of the house where the press was, and demanded admittance or they would break open the door. About this time some one of the Lovejoy party, in an upper story, raised a window and shot down in the crowd. This shot killed a man. The corpse was brought into Dr. Hart's office and exposed to public view. The sight of the dead body still more inflamed the masses, but they acted with calmness and reflection. They restrained action for an hour, considering in what manner they would destroy the building and the press. It was decided that both the building and press should be destroyed; but still the citizens authorized Henry West, and some one or two others, to go to Lovejoy and expostulate with him, and to inform him and friends of the imminent danger they were in. Lovejoy answered "they would defend the press with their lives if necessary. On return of this answer, a serious and desperate resolution was taken by the citizens to destroy the press and house at all events. The warehouse was a large stone building, four stories high, and on one side it was discovered it had no windows. At this side long ladders were procured and hoisted to the top of the house. Men went up the ladders with combustibles and set the roof on fire. The fire company, under the command of Captain Pitts, was called to extinguish the flames, but the force and rage of the people prevented the company from approaching the building. The mayor of the city also, did all in his power to restrain the fury of the population. About this time, when the house was on fire, Lovejoy and some two or three others, well armed, came out of the building, as it was supposed, to shoot those setting the house on fire, and walked in the dark round the house toward the ladder. Some one or more were concealed in a pile of lumber near Lovejoy and shot him. As soon as he was shot he exclaimed "I am a dead man." He was carried up stairs in the building and he expired in a few minutes. The rest of the Lovejoy party escaped by the consent of I the people in the dark out of the building, and thus ended this unfortunate and outrageous transaction.

Lovejoy was killed on the 17th of November, 1837, and almost all the previous summer Alton was occupied by this excitement. The mayor of the city exerted all his power in vain to preserve peace, and the preachers in the pulpit and all orderly


citizens, labored all the time to suppress this tragedy, but it was all in vain.

The fire company extinguished the flames on the house, and all quieted down into darkness and oblivion. The Grand Jury of Madison County found bills of indictment in some cases arising out of this riot, but no one was punished. It was judged advisable by all parties, the sooner the better to forget and forgive all concerned in this unjustifiable transaction. Thus ended one of the most singular tragedies that has perhaps occurred anywhere. The citizens of Alton at the beginning presumed an abolition journal in their place, so near the State of Missouri, a slave State, would do the city of Alton a serious injury, and prevent the growth of the place. This was, as far as I understand, one reason the citizens urged against the establishment of such a paper at Alton. When the people waxed warm, and became excited, it was a matter of honor not to abandon the ground they assumed. The Lovejoy party was equally as unyieldy, and hence the unfortunate bloodshed.

Chapter CVII.

The First Railroad Constructed West of the Mountains by the Author and Others. — Other Railroads in Illinois.

BEING left out of congress in 1836, I was overflowing with energy and vigor, so that I could not remain quiet and idle. I had a large tract of land located on the Mississippi Bluff, six miles from St. Louis, which contained in it Inexhaustible quantities of bituminous coal. This coal mine was the nearest St. Louis, Missouri, of any other on this side of the Mississippi River. I had also most of the land on which a railroad might be constructed to convey the coal onto the market. Under these circumstances, a few others with myself decided to construct a railroad from the bluff to the Mississippi opposite St. Louis. This road was about six miles long, and although short, the engineer made an erroneous calculation of the cost — making the estimate less than one-half the real cost.

We all embarked in this enterprise when we knew very little about the construction of a railroad or the capacity of the market for the use of coal. In fact, the company had nothing but an excessive amount of energy and vigor, together with some wealth and some standing with which to construct the road, and we accomplished it.

We were forced to bridge a lake over 2000 feet across, and we drove down piles more than eighty feet into the mud and water of the lake, on which to erect the bridge, We put three piles on the top of one another, and fastened the ends together.


We battered the piles down with a metal battering-ram of 1400 pounds' weight.

The members of the company themselves hired the hands at times one hundred a-day — and overlooked the work. They built shanties to board the hands in, and procured provisions and lodging for them. They graded the track, cut and hauled the timber, piled the lake, built the road, and had it running in one season of the year, in 1837. This work was performed in opposition to much clamor against it that it would not succeed, and that we would break at it, and such predictions. We had not the means or the time in one year to procure the iron for the rails or a locomotive, so we were compelled to work the road without iron and with horse-power. We did so, and delivered much coal at the river. It is strange how it was possible we could construct this road under these circumstances. It was the first railroad built in the Mississippi Valley, and such an improvement was new to every one as well as our company.

It was in the year 1826 that the first railroad was built in the United States, connecting Albany with Schenectady, in the State of New York; and the next was built in South Carolina. Railroads were not well understood at that day in any part of America.

In the spring of 1838, I offered for congress, and we considered it best to sell out, as I could not attend to the road with the rest of the company. We sold and took no mortgage on the property. We lost by the sale twelve or thirteen thousand dollars. We sold for less by twenty thousand dollars than it cost us. I lost in the enterprise fifteen or eighteen thousand dollars. This amount was then considered as much as thirty thousand at this day.

The members of the company, and I one of them, lay out on the premises of the road day and night while the work was progressing; and I assert that it was the greatest work or enterprise ever performed in Illinois under the circumstances. But it well-nigh broke us all.

As heretofore stated, the railroad connecting Springfield with the Illinois River was the next road made in the State. It never succeeded to any great extent, and finally it was sold, as recorded above. For many years, the railroad system remained not entirely dead in Illinois, "but sleepeth." The next in order of time, is the road known as the Galena and Chicago Union Railroad. This improvement lingered for many years, but it worked, its way at last into existence. It is extended one hundred and twenty-one miles from Chicago to Freeport, and there intersects the Illinois Central Railroad. The Illinois Central Railroad extending from Cairo — one branch to Dubuque, in Iowa, and the other to Chicago — is the most splendid and magnificent road in America. It is upward of seven hundred miles


long, and not only connects the North and South together, but extends through the middle of the most fertile and prolific soil on the globe. This road received from the United States a great quantity of land for its construction, and was made on the most substantial and approved system. It would require a volume to record the history of this road; suffice it to say here, that this road is grand and magnificent, and is in perfect keeping with the age and State where it is built.

A fine road is constructed from Alton to Chicago, connecting the Atlantic with the Western waters. This was the first road in the Union connecting the Atlantic Ocean with the Mississippi. Another road has been constructed from Chicago to the Mississippi at Rock Island, also connecting the seaboard with the Mississippi.

A road has been constructed this summer from Illinoistown, opposite St. Louis, Missouri, to Vincennes, Indiana. This road is one hundred and forty-six miles long, and connects the Ocean and the Mississippi together by Terre Haute, Indiana, and Cincinnati, Ohio. A fine road is now constructed from the Illinois River, by Jacksonville and Springfield, to Decatur, on the Illinois Central Road. A road is built from Peoria to the Rock Island Railroad, fourteen miles west of Peru.

Another has recently been constructed from Joliet direct to the East, intersecting the roads east from Chicago. A road is built from Belleville to Alton, by the Illinoistown, and the cars are on it.

A fine road is nearly completed from Terre Haute, Indiana, to Alton that will connect the ocean with the Mississippi.

These are some of the roads built in the State, but others are being completed so fast that we can scarcely record them. I presume that there are two thousand miles of railroads running at this time in the State of Illinois.

Chapter CVIII.

The Internal Improvements of the State in 1836. — Railroads. — The Canal.

IT frequently occurs with nations, as well as with the individuals, to be impressed with wild vagaries and impulses which are not founded on reason or common-sense. The United States frequently fall, into these whims, and bids defiance for years to sober reflection. At times, a banking-mania takes hold of the public, and many banks, more than are needed, are chartered. The manufacture of silk, and the appendages, excited the people, and the white mulberry, (Morus multicaulis,) was the rage on which to feed the silk-worms. Another senseless


vagary, without the least common-sense in it, was the mania that Louis Kossuth raised among the people to join him to conquer general and universal freedom, at least as far as Hungary was concerned. And in the year 1836, the fever of internal improvements raged throughout most of the States in the Union. Pennsylvania, my native state, was crazy to improve the whole country, whether the wants of the people required it or not. Indiana was almost as wild; and Illinois, also, was crazed considerably with the mania.

This move of internal improvements commenced to rise in Illinois in 1832, and rolled on, increasing in its momentum until 1836, when a general system was established by law. Some shallow writers blame the politicians for this unwise and extravagant system, but it is on the people themselves where the blame rests. The masses were more strenuous and decided for the improvements than the politicians were, and forced their leaders into it. A large meeting was held in Nashville, Washington County, to bring the subject before the people and the next legislature. The people would not entrust their representatives in the general assembly, but had delegates also there in the lobbies to urge on the general improvement system.

A bill was passed in the legislature of 1836 and 1837, and vetoed by the council of revision, but the same was passed through both branches of the general assembly over the governor and judges. This act contemplated great improvements, and authorized the loan of eight millions of dollars. This is the origin of the State debt, except the small previous debt for the construction of the canal. The system provided for railroads from Cairo to Galena, from Alton to Shawneetown, from Alton to Mount Carmel, from Alton to the State line near Terre Haute, from Quincy, through Springfield, east to the Wabash, from Bloomington to Pekin, and from Peoria to Warsaw, amounting to about thirteen hundred miles of railroads. The rivers — Kaskaskia, Illinois, Great and Little Wabash, and Rock — were to be improved. Also, two hundred thousand dollars were to be distributed throughout the counties where the improvements did not extend. At the next session, with a new general assembly, the debt for internal improvements was again increased eight hundred thousand dollars. The fever still raged.

I was absent from the State in congress mostly for three years, and when I returned home, in 1837, I found the people perfectly insane on the subject of improvements. No reason or argument would reach them. But the banks failed considerably, and the money for those improvements could not be procured in another year, so that a called-session of the general assembly in 1838 and 1839, was forced to repeal the whole system, and to provide for its being wound up.

Another misfortune in the system was the law requiring the


work on the roads to be commenced at the same time on each improvement. By this system, no improvement was completed except the railroad from Springfield to the Illinois River. This road was of no advantage to the State, and the legislature of 1846 ordered it to be sold at whatever price it would bring. If l recollect rightly, I proposed the sale of all the improvements of the State that would sell, and this policy was adopted. The above road cost the State about a million dollars, and sold for one hundred thousand in State indebtedness.

The whole amount of the State debt for the canal and the internal improvements was $14,237,348. This was a heavy debt for the population of the State, there being at the time only 488,929 inhabitants, according to the census of 1840, and they too embarrassed by private debts and poor. This debt, for a short time, retarded the settlement of the country, but at no time was there the least notion among the masses to relieve themselves by repudiation. The subject was mentioned in congress in 1841, I think, and I remarked that the people of Illinois would, in a short time, pay the whole debt, and that repudiation was, by the masses of the people, not dreamed of.

It is due to history to state, that the Hon. Sidney Breese was the first person who brought the subject of the Illinois Central Railroad before the people in a newspaper publication, which was then a splendid conception, and which is now the most splendid and magnificent railroad in the world. George Forquer, Esq., proposed in the senate of 1832 and 1833, a survey for a railroad across the State through Springfield, and Lieut.-Governor Jenkins the survey of the Illinois Central Road from Cairo to Peru. These were the aborigines of the railroads in Illinois. The northern section of the State was not settled at that day, and needed no improvements.

The Illinois and Michigan Canal, connecting the waters of the lakes with the Mississippi, is one of the greatest improvements in the United States. It is ninety-seven miles long, sixty feet wide, and six feet deep. The State of Illinois never ceased making efforts to construct this canal from 1818 to its completion in 1848. During all this long series of years, enactments were made, at times surveys were executed, and at last money was obtained in 1836, with which to commence the work.

In 1827, our members in congress, Messrs. Edwards, Thomas, and Cook, obtained a grant of land to aid in the construction of the canal. The Congress of the United States donated for the construction every alternate section of land for five miles on each side of the whole length of the canal. This was the great sheet-anchor of the canal.

In the times of the internal improvements, in 1836, the money was procured by a loan, and the work commenced in reality on this improvement. The labors on the canal continued for


several years, until the failure of the banks deranged the currency and partially destroyed it. The work on the canal, like all other improvements, was suspended for two or three years.

Judge Young and myself being commissioners to negotiate a loan for the canal, obtained some funds for it in the year 1839 in Philadelphia and London, but the last source was soon thereafter dried up, and the work was suspended.

The general assembly, in the session of 1844 and 1845, made an excellent law authorizing the canal-bondholders to take the canal and all its property and tolls for a certain number of years, and in consideration, the bondholders were to advance more money — about sixteen hundred thousand dollars — and finish the canal. This arrangement was made, and the canal, in the hands of the company, was completed in 1848. The great object of the State was to open this avenue of commerce for the benefit of the public, and not so much for the tolls arising on it.

The canal is in complete repair and operation, arranged with boats, and all necessary equipments, to accommodate the great business done on it. It is also fast diminishing the debt which was a heavy lien on it in the beginning, and in a short time the whole debt of construction will be liquidated and the canal return again into the hands of the State. This arrangement will also make a payment of five or six millions of the State debt. But the State debt is being paid without the least embarrassment to the people, and in a few years, it will be entirely liquidated.

The improvements and business of the country increase so fast that the canal does more business since the railroad passes along its shores than it did before in the unimproved years of the country. Fleets of canal-boats are seen as low down the river as St. Louis, and all the intermediate ports to Chicago.

It was the overflow of the bank-currency, about the year 1836, that made the country so wild for improvements and town speculations. But the revulsion set in, and all these imaginary schemes fell dead to the ground.

Chapter CIX.

The Improvements and Growth of the Country. — In 1840, the Whole State was under Organized Government, and the Wilderness Disappeared. — Indians Removed. — Indian Traits of Character. — George E. Walker's Command of the Indians.

As it has already been remarked, that Illinois, after the Black-Hawk war, commenced to improve and populate with great rapidity. So many intelligent volunteers, and the United States officers, seeing the extraordinary fertility of the soil and


the beauty of the country, gave the State standing and character at home and abroad. This caused the whole northern section of the country to fill up with industrious inhabitants, and, in 1840, counties were organized throughout the whole State, and the wilderness and Indians disappeared. I witnessed, with deep feeling and anxiety, all this for forty years. I saw the country in 1800, when my father first settled in it, a wilderness, occupied by the savages and at this day I see the State of Illinois all occupied by an intelligent, industrious, and happy population, and all the various branches of industry making rapid strides to achieve the high destiny of the State. I have been an attentive and interested observer of all this extraordinary progress of the country, from a few thousand inhabitants, located in sparse settlements in two counties, on the margin of the Mississippi, to the present population of almost a million and a half of inhabitants, and this all accomplished within a little over a half-century. I feel happy that my lot was cast in this age of progress, and that I had the opportunity, in my humble manner, to assist in the advancement of the country. Illinois is only reaching the borders of its greatness. Although the State contains more than two thousand miles of railroads completed in its limits, and has a population of almost a million and a half of souls, and ranks, at this day, the Empire State of the West, yet in a half-century more, it will not be prophecy, but history, that Illinois will be the most populous State in the Union, and Chicago the first or second city on the American continent.

In 1833, the last Indian tribe, the Pottawatomies, sold all their lands, in the north-eastern section of the State, to the General Government, and bid "a long farewell" to the graves of their fathers. This cession being made, and the public lands surveyed, the country was settled up in a few years as above stated.

There are traits of Indian character that are strong and peculiar to them. Some years since, the Sac Indians killed some of the Iowa tribe, and a demand of the Iowa Indians was made on the Sacs for the murderers. By compromise, the demand was reduced to one Sac — the man who killed the Iowas. When the demand was made, the Indian agreed on to be given up to death was sick, and was unable to travel at the time. The brother of the sick Indian cheerfully volunteered to be executed in the place of his brother, and marched with a Sac chief west to the Iowas and gave himself up. This noblest act, and the young Indian appearing so brave and generous to suffer death for his brother, softened the hearts of the Iowas, and they restored the young Sac with honor to his nation. This kind act of the Iowas made a lasting peace between the two nations.

In the fall of the year, 1833, Mr. George E. Walker, of


LaSalle County, was the sheriff of the county, and had, as an officer, a singular transaction with two young Pottawatomie Indians. It is due the subject to state that Mr. Walker is a backwoodsman of strong mind, and much moral and physical courage, who is also well acquainted with Indian character. He possessed great influence over the Indians. These two Indians had been concerned in the massacre of the whites in the Black-Hawk war, the previous year, on Indian Creek, in LaSalle County. They had been indicted in LaSalle County for murder, and had appeared at the time the circuit-court was to be held at Ottawa, in the county, but the term of the court was changed, and they were not tried. They supposed the whites, as they said, did not want them any more, and went with the rest of their tribe over to the west side of the Mississippi. Walker and sureties were responsible for the appearance of the Indians at the court for trial. Just after the close of the Black-Hawk war, bad and angry feelings existed between the whites and the Indians. Walker went alone for the Indians to the west side of the Mississippi. He went single-handed into the heart of the Indian country, two or three hundred miles from any white settlement, and in the midst of the tribe who were so exasperated against the whites. He called a council of the chiefs, and it was agreed that the two young Indians should return with Walker, three or four hundred miles, to court. The Indians all considered it certain that the two young men would be hung. Being shot they did not dislike so much as hanging. Walker and his Indians, after they bade a formal and sincere farewell to their relatives and friends, started for Ottawa. They travelled alone, and camped and slept together every night. Walker spoke their language well, and was intimately acquainted with Indian character. At Rock Island, were many Indians trading with the whites, and Walker's prisoners requested him to go alone through the Indians and so many whites at Fort Armstrong at Rock Island, and they would follow him alone. They said they could not endure the dishonor for the Indians and whites to see them,like dogs, under the power of Walker. He agreed to their request, and they marched alone through their Indian comrades on the Island, and met Walker at the place agreed on. The party travelled together, and the horse of Walker was used by the Indians as much as by Walker, and he walked with the other Indian while one was on his horse before. Often Walker has told me that an Indian would ride his horse a long way ahead of the others, and make camp arrangements by the time Walker and the other Indian would arrive. Walker never held out the least promise to them that they would be acquitted, as he did not know himself how the case would go in the hands of the excited white population. One night, they asked Walker to camp at an old Sac encampment where there was good water


and grass. At this camp, Walker's horse ran off and one of the Indians followed him ten or twelve miles and brought him back. Walker and Indians lay out seven nights, and the Indians might have killed him any night and never been captured for it. The Government procured able counsel to defend the Indians. Col William S Hamilton, of Wisconsin, was employed as counsel to defend them. This gentleman had great influence with both the whites and the Indians. The Indians were acquitted, and returned safe to their nation west of the Mississippi. Walker performed this extraordinary act with the warriors on his personal standing and popularity with the Indians. It was his personal influence over the tribe that gave him this power.

Another transaction shows what respect and honor they gave Walker. On Peoria Lake, sixty or seventy miles below Ottawa, a young chief, Senachewine, brought to Ottawa an Indian who had murdered another Indian, and the chief desired Walker to hang the murderer. Senachewine said Walker was a great man with the Indians, and for him to hang the Indian would do more good, to prevent crime, than for his warriors to kill him. They had brought the prisoner up sixty odd miles, under a guard, for Walker to hang him. When the Indians reached Ottawa, Walker was not at home, and the father of Walker was kind and civil to the Indians, but did not know how on earth his son would escape from this dilemma. On Walker's return home, Senachewine made his business known to Walker. Walker at once agreed to hang the prisoner, but said he was hungry, as he had not been at breakfast or dinner. While Walker was eating, he gave the young chief and those with him some brandy. Walker ate slowly to reflect what to do. He had not the least notion of hanging the Indian, but did not want to displease the chief, as Walker was a large Indian trader. Walker's slow eating gave the brandy time to operate on the Indian. It made the chief relax some in his desire to have the Indian hung. The culprit had killed another Indian in a drunken frolic when he knew nothing about the act, and Walker thought the prisoner was not much guilty. After dinner, when the chief had become mellowed down by the brandy. Walker got a rope and prepared to hang the prisoner, and said: "Now I will hang the Indian, but, in a few months, when all the Indians will be at Chicago to receive their annuities, they could all see me hang the prisoner there, and it would do much more good to hang him in public, to prevent any more murders," and added, "but I am ready to hang him now, if you say so." The chief decided to postpone the execution, and before the time, the affair was made up among the Indians. This was a singular sagacity of Walker to save himself and the Indian in this dilemma.

Another time, at Chicago, when the Indians received their


annuities, an Indian had been drunk for days, and was covered face and all, with mud and dirt. The drunken Indian came to Walker at the hotel, among many gentlemen, and wanted to kiss his friend Walker. Walker, again, did not like to displease the Indians, and told the drunken Indian that it was Sunday, a holiday with the Americans, to come to-morrow and "I will let you kiss me." The Indian got sober and forgot it, and Walker retained the Indians' friendship.

On a steamboat, on the Illinois River, a young clergyman green from one of the Eastern colleges, wanted to know much about the Indian character, and made himself rather troublesome to the passengers. Some wag put Mr. Walker up to the trick, and told the young clergyman that Mr. Walker was part Indian, and could give him all the information he desired of the Indian customs and manners. He called on Walker, and took down for publication all the information relative to the Indians that Walker gave him. He knew well the customs, manners, and religion of the Pottawatomie Indians, and gave the clergyman correct information. But the joke was in the minister inquiring of Walker about his Indian parentage. Walker was of dark complexion, with exceedingly black eyes, and could speak the Indian language well. He played the joke off on the student, who was a scholar, but knew nothing of practical common-sense. It is said that the whole Walker transaction was published in an Eastern magazine as genuine Indian information from the half-breed Walker. Common-sense is a great friend through this life.

Chapter CX.

The Election. — Governor Carlin. — He appointed the Author a Commissioner to make a Loan of Money for the Canal. — Obtains a Loan of a Million Dollars in Philadelphia. — Embarks for Europe. — Lands at Liverpool, England.

I offered for congress, as before stated, in the spring of 1838, and my opponent was the Rev. John Hogan, of Alton. Mr. Hogan was a gentleman of good talents and a handsome speaker. He was industrious and made many speeches — but did not succeed.

At the same election, Cols. Cyrus Edwards and Thomas Carlin were candidates for governor of the State, and both were excellent men and very popular. Col. Carlin was elected. He made a wise and prudent governor, and retired to private life with the decided approbation of the people. Gov. Carlin possessed a strong and vigorous mind, and although deprived of a liberal education in early life, yet he acquired much sound practical information of men and measures. He was an ardent and


zealous Democrat, and supported that party from principle. He possessed unquestioned patriotism and integrity, and has left a character that will descend to posterity with fame and honor. He was eminent in these traits of character: a decidedly strong mind, strict integrity, and great energy. The reason I speak so positively of Gov. Carlin is that he and I were raised together in the backwoods of Illinois, ranged together in the I war of 1812, in the same military company, and acted together in the same political party for many years.

The General Assembly of 1838 and 1839 authorized the governor to make a loan of four millions of dollars to prosecute the work on the canal. I was on the circuit practising law when Gov. Carlin wrote me that he had appointed me a commissioner to make the loan for the canal. I had not the least intimation whom he would appoint until I received his letter. I called on him at Vandalia, and had much conversation with him on the subject. I had no desire to visit Europe and urged the governor to appoint some other person. He refused, and said I must go, as he knew me and could trust me. There was considerable complaint of other commissioners, and he wished to appoint, he said, such as had the confidence of the people. I urged upon the governor the propriety of appointing another commissioner with me, and recommended the Hon. Richard M. Young. This gentleman was then in the senate of the United States and at Washington City. After some time, the governor did appoint him, and we met in London in the summer thereafter of the same year.

The money-market was getting tighter every day, and I knew that if anything could be done, the sooner the better to commence operations. All the money which had been procured for the canal was expended, and if funds were not obtained instantly the work on it would have to be suspended and stopped for some time.

This duty to provide money immediately for the canal placed me under much responsibility and hurried me on to the eastern cities, where I met Gen. Rawlings and Col. Oakley, the fund-commissioners of the State. I obtained the able services of Gen. Rawlings, and we made a contract with the United States Bank of Pennsylvania to furnish a million of dollars for the canal, and the bank to take the canal-bonds for payment. The paper of the bank, in ten-dollar notes, was to be paid out on the canal. It is due to truth to say that Gen. Rawlings had great influence with the president of the bank, Mr. Biddle, and he did more than I to obtain the loan. We both signed the contract. This loan kept the work on the canal going on for some time.

The duties I was about to perform required a different study than I had been engaged in, but I was a tolerable good judge of human character and knew as much about the resources of


Illinois to pay her debts as any one. I also was well posted as to the canal and its resources, lands, and future tolls. With these outfits, and our expenses, I prepared for the voyage across the Atlantic to the Old World. The State bonds were being executed in the city of New York, and would be forwarded to me in London. I went in advance of Judge Young and the bonds, to prepare for or make the sale of the bonds before the hard times would entirely shut down on us. I discovered in my intercourse with the people of Europe, and particularly in my duties to procure a loan of money, that a person in office, or who has been in high office, has much more standing with them than in the United States. I was then a member of congress, and had been governor of the State, and had filled many other official stations, which gave me a standing that did much service to advance the interest of the canal. The pecuniary market was becoming worse and worse every day I was in Europe, which made it almost impossible to obtain a loan, although all agreed that the canal-bonds of Illinois were the best in the market.

Myself and wife set sail from New York on the 19th of May, 1839, for Europe. We embarked on the steamer Liverpool, and sailed for the city of the same name. In this vessel on this voyage were passengers from almost all the nations of the earth. The Hon. Daniel Webster and family were on board. So was Gen. Rawlings and Col. Oakley, the two commissioners of the State. We had eighty-six passengers on board, and some were from Canada, Mexico, Gautemala, Cuba, and some from almost every state in the Union. Many of the military officers of the British army that formed the court-martial in Canada that tried and condemned the patriots of that country, were among the passengers.

I kept a journal of my travels in Europe, so that my narrative of it will be more correct than if I trusted to memory alone. We enjoyed on the voyage excellent weather, and had on board every necessary and comfort of living, together with a very agreeable and intelligent society. The only drawback was the sea-sickness with those who were not accustomed to the ocean. My wife embarked in the travel mostly for her health, but her continued sea-sickness was worse on her than any advantage she obtained from the voyage.

We saw whales forcing the water up out of their mouths some distance, but the most surprising things were the small, dark-colored birds, known as "Mother-Carey's Chickens," hovering in great numbers, at times, around the vessel. They visited our steamer when land was not within a thousand miles of us. It is strange what could support them in this desert of water. How could they roost at night? Man will never read all through the book of nature.


It is the custom of vessels to calculate the course and distance run for the last twenty-four hours and post it up at 12 o'clock on each day. This is a satisfaction to know what progress is made each day on the ocean, and also to know the distance to the port to which the vessel is sailing. It is surprising to what accuracy the science and practice of navigation have arrived. The chronometer has been so perfected that it will run for years without varying but a few minutes or seconds, or perhaps none, from the exact time. With this exact time, and other improvements in navigation, a mariner can designate the location of his vessel more accurately on the water than he could measure it on land.

The captain of the Liverpool steamer told us at a certain point near the coast of Ireland he would get soundings at so many fathoms of water. He let down his lead-line and brought sand up as he had stated. This calculation was made after sailing almost three thousand miles from one continent to the other. This accuracy astonished all who were not familiar with navigation. The great expanse of water, the great ocean, at once showed us that it had a great agency in our Revolution in preventing the mother-country from transporting their armies and munitions of war. Although steam-vessels pass over this ocean in a few days, there is a world of water which makes itself better known by sight than by conception. I think it is fortunate for the United States that this great barrier of water does exist between America and Europe. I think it would be doubtful, if the United States lay contiguous to Europe, whether our example and habits would improve them, or their example and habits injure us. I think there is no patriot who would like to see the barrier between the United States and Europe destroyed. To live on friendly terms with the nations of Europe is our duty to commerce, and to extend to them by our example and precepts, a spirit of free government; but to receive many of their habits and customs, and their principles of monarchy, would be a ruinous exchange.

We saw Cape Clear, in Ireland — the first European land I saw — and on the 2d of June landed at Liverpool, being out from New York only fifteen days.


Chapter CXI.

The First Sight of Europe to a Backwoodsman. — The English and French. — Liverpool. — St. James' Cemetery. — The Tunnel. — Railroad. — The Blue-Coat Boys. — The Blundells. — Buildings in Europe not Gay. — Statue of Lord Nelson. — Hotels in England not Gaudy.

It is truly astonishing that fifteen days' voyage can present such a change as Europe does to the backwoods' American. Every thing is so different in Europe from America, that it looks like a dream until we become familiar with the country. The first two great considerations that struck my mind were the myriads of people, and the bare and open appearance of the country, being almost entirely destitute of timber. But the very character and standing of Europe is imposing throughout the world, and the veneration and respect we have for this section of the earth, impress us with a feeling that is easier felt than described. The great antiquity visible on the cities, and on every thing, together with the solid and durable improvements, make us believe that the country had scarcely ever a beginning, or would scarcely ever have an end.

The buildings, public and private, in Liverpool, and, in fact, throughout all England, are constructed in that solid, durable manner, which are intended more for service and comfort than for show and dazzling appearance. Utility is indelibly impressed on everything in England more than outward show and parade. This trait is marked on the nation so far as my observation extended. They never indulge in outside appearances of anything to the exclusion of comfort and profit. The English are a sober, solid, and reflecting people, tenacious in their habits and customs, and slow to adopt anything new or strange. They are firm to obstinacy, and will scarcely ever believe anything is good or right that is not English.

By crossing the British Channel to France, we find a people directly the reverse of the English. The great leading trait in the French character is, to make the great, grand, and magnificent — the ne plus ultra of perfection. Any thing that is grand, splendid, and brilliant, is admired by the French. The great emperor, Napoleon, the grand army, and the great French Empire, dazzle and enchant the French. They are a people of more taste and sentiment than the English. The latter nation depends more on reason and judgment, while the former makes their summum bonum to consist in something that is great, grand, and beautiful, that strikes their imaginations and fancy. The French are, nevertheless, not destitute of the most profound philosophers, statesmen, authors, and warriors that the world ever saw. One nation live an easy, social, and gay life, while


the other labors through the monotony of substantial living, which advances the animal comforts more than the mental enjoyments. They are both great nations in their respective spheres and policy.

The general appearance of Liverpool is prosperous and happy. It enjoys a great commerce to every quarter of the globe, and its docks, and other means to benefit commerce, are substantial and convenient. The docks for shipping at Liverpool are the largest and best on earth. They are made of cut stone, seemingly as durable as time. Its whole appearance indicates its great antiquity, as no one knows its commencement, and providence alone knows its end.

St. James' cemetery at Liverpool is a curiosity. It is excavated out of the solid rock in the city. The rock was all taken from this quarry with which to build the city, and afterward the excavation, several hundred feet below the surface, was converted into a graveyard. The precipice around the cemetery is perpendicular, and is one or two hundred feet deep. The houses of the city are built around it and to it. It is of considerable extent, and but one slope into it. The rock is excavated to receive the dead bodies. Nice tombs are here in abundance. I saw the tomb of Hon. William T. Barry, of Kentucky, in this cemetery. This sight thrilled through me, bearing the thoughts of Kentucky to my heart. A substantial railroad is made from this city to London, 205 miles, and passes through a tunnel in Liverpool one mile and a quarter long, some of which passes under the city. The cars from this city reach London in ten or twelve hours. This is an excellent road, and was in good repair when we travelled on it.

Early in the morning of the 4th of June, I heard music in the streets of Liverpool, and found it was performed by the boys of "The Blue-Coat Hospital," so called. This institution was formed by Mr. Blundell, in the year 1716, and was patronized by his son and grandson. These benevolent men gave great estates to this institution. The portraits of these three founders, together with their short history, and that of the institution, are hung up in the hall of the establishment. Other benevolent persons have added to the institution. The boys were all dressed in blue, and were either orphans or children of very indigent parents. They enter the college at eight, and remain until they are fourteen years old. There are two hundred and fifty boys and one hundred girls in this institution. The children male and female, were well clothed and kept, and were taught the rudiments of learning, and also instructed to work. The boys were at fourteen put out to trades, and the girls to private families of good standing. This institution speaks well for the Christian virtues of the people of Liverpool, and volumes for the truly benevolent Blundells.


On arriving in England, a person discovers the masses of the English are stronger, more healthy, and coarser in their deportment than the Americans. The English do not enter into discussion and conversation as much as the Americans. They are more reserved and taciturn than the Americans. The nature of the country and their political institutions, make this difference. One people are more benefited by thinking and talking than the other, and they indulge it more. The masses in England are more prudent, and observe more economy than the Americans. The latter people are more intelligent, energetic and adventurous. The Americans often get into difficulties, but their talents and energy soon get them out again. There is no despondency in the Americans. It is with them somewhat like the English say, that "every American has a steam-engine in his breast, propelling him eternally onward." The masses of the English having no voice in the government do not discuss politics as the Americans do. There is an unbounded ambition in the Americans that does not exist with the English. This restless, ungovernable ambition, that renders the Americans so energetic and enthusiastic, does not afford them the calm, quiet happiness that an Englishman enjoys in his more quiet and grave course through life. But happiness is generally very nearly equal among mankind, as I have heretofore stated in this work. Liverpool being the first European city I saw, everything looked more strange and curious to me in it than when I became more accustomed to Europe. Almost everything — manufactories, buildings, and public edifices — are erected and conducted on a larger scale in England than in the United States. They have more laborers and more wealth than we have. I saw a foundry and steam-engine shop in Liverpool where I was informed that eight or nine hundred hands were employed. The coal and iron were furnished them from London on the railroad. A zoological garden in this city contains almost every animal that is not common in the country. The Brahmdon cow resembles our wild buffalo. Attached to this garden is an apiary that contains almost all the bird species on the earth. The panoramic paintings in this city were beautiful and of excellent taste. The custom-house was the largest building I ever saw at that time. It was five hundred and forty feet long, and several stories high. It was not deep in proportion to its length. It was built out of cut-stone, and appeared almost as lasting as time itself. A costly statue in honor of Lord Nelson is erected in this city. It is made in bad taste, in my opinion. Four human beings were in chains at his feet, showing the nations the naval commander was a great conqueror. It might suit barbarous times, but does not comport with this age. The statue is made out of some dark material that neither time or weather can much injure. Out of the same material is made a


gigantic statue of George the Third and his stud-horse, both as they should be, rough and coarse. The king is on his steed without a saddle. This is placed on an elevated pedestal in a public square.

The houses in the large cities of Europe are generally larger, and more solid and durable than in the United States. When I returned to the city of New York, after a sojourn of three or four months in Europe, it seemed to me that the houses in America were much smaller than I had considered them to be before I saw those over the water. The buildings in England have not that gay, lively appearance which the houses in the United States display. The climate in England gives them a dark, dusky, and rather a gloomy appearance, and they do not use the gay and brilliant colors in painting their houses that we do. There is nothing elegant or splendid in the public houses in England like we see in either France or America, but every thing is arranged for true and substantial comfort and sensual enjoyment. In none of the finest and best-conducted hotels in Europe are the arrangements as they are in the United States. In Europe, the guests do not usually eat at the same table, as they do in America. In the old country, the custom is for each party, or each person if they please, to mess separately by themselves. The time of the meals, the place, and what dishes desired, are ordered and served up accordingly. The parties themselves form their own messes and not the landlord, and enjoy whatever they please to order. Almost everything may be had in those large cities that was ever thought of to gratify the appetite. This custom is sustained in Europe, as they have such very cheap prices for labor there. Labor is dearer here than in the old country, which is perhaps the reason we have not the same management here, because it is better than the promiscuous messing together, as is the practise in the United States. The European practice in this respect is fast becoming the custom in the large American cities, and is now adopted in many.

Chapter CXII.

London. — Its Leading Features. — Its Size. — Its Wealth. — Its Antiquity. — In 1066, William the Conqueror gave it a Charter. — Old and New City. — St. Paul's Church. — Westminster Abbey. — Six Thousand Children in St. Paul's Church. — Bridges. — The Tunnel under the Thames. — Free Schools in London. — The Carriages in England.

After remaining at Liverpool for a few days to recruit and see something of the city, we embarked in the cars for London, and passed this extraordinary tunnel already mentioned. The rural


districts of Old England were beautiful in a high state of cultivation. I saw them reclaiming some marshy land by filling it with earth. Land in that country is the main object, and scarcely an inch is left unoccupied or uncultivated. The nakedness of the country still was a striking feature with me. It was similar to our prairie country in the north of this State, only the fine houses and the people were more plenty than with us in the prairies.

The cars stopped a short time at Birmingham, the great workshop of England, and in the evening we passed Hereford, where the country is covered for miles with the delf factories. I presume there are ten miles of factories, with the large chimneys of the furnaces that extend several hundred feet into the air. Toward dark, we were in the cars with the mail from Liverpool to London, and a guard with a gun mounted the mail-bags to guard them. This is English prudence and right. We reached the great city toward sunset, and entered a large yard enclosed so that the rabble, the porters, and hack-drivers could not enter. This relieves the passenger while inside the enclosure, but when you set foot on the outside there is a scramble for your patronage, which is very disagreeable.

It would require a long acquantance with London, and great talents to describe that famous city. The great leading features of this mammoth city were to me its enormous size, its great wealth, and its unknown antiquity. To be in the same city where Caesar two thousand years since commanded his army, shows that you are in a place of great antiquity, at least compared to the United States. The wealth of this city is wonderful and almost beyond belief. A great writer says "London is the greatest, wealthiest, and most important metropolis in the world." This city contains almost two millions of souls and is still increasing.

In the year 1066, William, Duke of Normandy, conquered the country and gave the charter to the city of London, which is retained to this day. The city then occupied about two miles square, and now it covers an area of eighteen miles. The old city limits remain, as to its government, to this day, although the old ancient wall is taken away. The new city built around the old one has a different government and is much larger than the old. The location of the old wall can be discovered in places, but the traces of it have mostly disappeared.

The tunnel under the Thames is a great curiosity. It is 1300 feet long and 32 feet wide, arched over to keep the river out. It is 22 feet high, with a wall in the middle, leaving about 15 feet on each side for carriages, passengers, etc. It is made of brick, and is lighted so that a passage in it under the Thames is convenient and pleasant. This work is the best evidence to demonstrate what talent and money can


accomplish. I travelled on a railroad from London to Greenwich, four or five miles, which road passes over houses at the end in London. I came back by water on the Thames in a steamboat, which runs each hour from one place to the other. At Greenwich is the National Hospital for the invalid sailors and soldiers worn out in the public-service.

The old London-Bridge was commenced in the year 1176. Many of the bridges over the Thames were constructed for both utility and substantial elegance, and except a person looks he would suppose he was walking, while on them, on the solid earth. Poor dealers stand at the ends of these bridges annoying passengers to buy from them. The police do not permit them to put their articles for sale on the ground, so that they seem distressed with the weight on their arms and backs.

I was informed that in Dorsetshire, England, mounds of earth, tumuli, were known to exist with a tradition that a great battle had been fought near them, between the Romans and the natives, and that the slain in battle had been buried in these tumuli. A few years since, a few of the mounds were opened and glass jars, or large flat bottles, two or three feet long, containing a liquor, were found in them. In this liquor are supposed to have been deposited the hearts of the officers slain in battle. The jars were brought from Rome, and were not injured by time, although they must have been deposited there about two thousand years. The coin and other antiquities discovered in these tumuli showed it to be in the time of Adrian, emperor of Rome, when these mounds were erected.

I discovered that the churches and fortifications in Europe in ancient times were larger and better than the rest of the buildings, in proportion. The church and the government had the power in olden times and they abused it. The old churches are venerable and magnificent. The Westminster Abbey struck me with more surprise and wonder than St. Paul's, although the latter displays more modern splendor. Westminster Abbey is 530 feet long and 375 feet wide, and the towers 225 feet high — the middle 253 feet. St. Paul's is 500 feet long and 280 wide. It covers two acres of ground. I saw in St. Paul's church one Sunday, it was said, six thousand children from the various free-schools of London, and the Bishop preaching to them. It was an imposing spectacle. Each school had its uniform and livery to distinguish it from the others. I suppose that as many spectators were attending service in the church as the children amounted to. These children were being educated at the public expense, and were orphans or the children of indigent parents.

It was stated by authentic records, that sixty-six thousand children received each Sunday, instruction at the Sabbath-schools in London. They attend to business all week and to


school on the Sabbath. These children attend divine service on Sunday, headed by their teachers, who amount to at least five thousand, and who also attend the children at their houses to see if they conduct themselves with proprity during the week.

These teachers receive no pay save an approving conscience. They are actuated by the pure principles of Christianity taught in the New Testament.

I must not omit to mention some facts in regard to the carriages and wagons I saw in London. I do not recollect to have seen a wooden axle in any wheeled carriage, cart, or wagon in Europe. Iron is there considered to be the best for light running, strength, and durability. Pleasure carriages, wagons, and carts are all stronger and coarser than in the United States. They do not make use of eliptical springs as we do in America. Their saddles are also behind our age in the United States. They have fine horses and take more care of them than we do. They clean and rub them so that they never use a saddle-cloth.

Chapter CXIII.

Visit to Oxford. — Colleges. — Libraries. — Ancient Buildings. — Glass Broken by Cromwell. — Return to London. — The Tower of London. — The Parliament. — Lord Brougham. — Short Speeches. — The Courts. — Mayor's Court. — Government of London.

ON the 18th of July, 1839, I visited Oxford to see there a cattle-fair. Mr. Webster was there and made a speech. This ancient city of Oxford, so famous for its institutions of learning, is fifty-three miles north-west of London, and is situated in the midst of a beautiful and well-improved country. Oxford is at least twelve hundred years old by authentic history, and perhaps twelve more of which we know nothing. It is built on rather low river-bottom, but money and talents can accomplish almost anything, and have made it a pleasant place. The number of inhabitants of Oxford is considered about fourteen thousand, and several thousand students in addition in the winter. This city seemed to me to be on the decline, as I presume private schools are taking the place of these public institutions, which are the main support of this city. There are nineteen or twenty colleges congregated in this city, and libraries the most extensive perhaps in the world. I saw the studies of Samuel Johnson, John Wesley, and other eminent scholars, and the rooms where Charles the First and Charles the Second held their parliaments; a room is also marked out to traveller as the one where Cardinal Wolsey held his spiritual courts. I visited the two main libraries, the Ratcliff and Bodlean. The first contains seven hundred thousand volumes and the other


sixteen hundred thousand. It would seem to a backwoodsman as if all the books on earth were collected in these libraries. Many ancient and curious manuscripts are lodged in them. I found here the volume containing the travels of Charlevoix in New France, including Illinois, in the year 1721. As this city is situated in the interior and has no foreign commerce it has retained its original architecture. It presents great antiquity and the old Gothic style of architecture. I saw marked on a church the year 730, when it was built by the Saxons. Many of the buildings, public and private, present the Gothic style of 1530, when Henry VIII was the sovereign. In the churches I saw broken glass and other injuries done these edifices by the soldiers of Cromwell when they stabled their horses in these houses of worship. To show such a wanton act of vandal barbarism, they do not repair them. Cromwell may have committed some wanton acts, but still he was the greatest man England ever produced. His government is not now so obnoxious as heretofore.

I spent a day in visiting the ancient and magnificent fortress, the Tower of London. This mass of ancient buildings is situated at the east extremity of the city, and on the northern bank of the Thames, covering twelve acres of land. It is fortified with a strong wall around it, and the whole surrounded with a ditch. It was once a royal residence, but it has not been occupied by the royal family since the days of Queen Elizabeth. It was erected in the year 1076, by William the Conqueror, but great additions have been made to it since. A great number of cannon have been placed between the Tower and the river, to be fired on official occasions. The white tower is a large, irregular building, standing almost in the centre, where are stowed away a great number of arms. The record office is kept in a large building where are deposited the rolls of the kingdom and the tenures of land. The jewel office contains the most splendid regalia with which royality is invested at the coronation and on other occasions. The imperial crown, modeled for royality, is the richest in the world, as it is reported. All the apartments contain arms sufficient to arm two hundred thousand soldiers, so it is stated in the English books. A veteran soldier was our guide through the Tower, and took great pleasure in counting over the trophies, cannon and arms, taken by the British in various battles with their enemies in war. I was on the eve of asking him where the cannon were that the British army took from the Americans at the battle of New Orleans, the 8th of January, 1815. The entrance to this fortress is through four successive gates, which are exceedingly strong as I well remember. The gate, so called, was not hung on hinges, but was an immense, heavy, and strong wall of wood, which was raised up by levers to permit the people to pass in


and out, and then in the evening shut down again so as to close the entrance into the Tower.

In all my travels in England I saw scarcely a foot of uncultivated ground, or that was not used for some purpose. They cultivate with some vegetable the earth directly to the tracks of the railroad, so that the cars touch the products that grow so near the road. The Island can scarcely sustain the population from the earth, so that every inch of ground is used for some purpose. I visited often the sessions of the parliament, which was then held in the old church of St. Stephen's. They commenced their sessions about sunset and adjourned some time before day. The members of the house of commons are generally young men, dandies, and do not appear to possess the talents or grave qualifications that the British nation deserves. They mostly rode on horseback to the parliament-house, and had white servants to hold their horses until called for. The streets and grounds near the parliament-house were literally covered with horses during the night-sessions.

The house of lords was composed of aged men, and some very talented and distinguished characters. Thirty or forty spiritual lords, very large and fleshy, sat together in a corner of the house of lords, robed in white, and were silent so far as I witnessed the proceedings. The doors are closed, except by written permission from a member. After the first permission to each house the officers allowed me to visit either house as I pleased. They observe less order in their parliament than we do in the congress of the United States. There is often much noise and disorder in their sessions, but they do more and talk less than we do. Debates are not often indulged in longer than one evening on any one subject. They disapprove of declamatory speeches in or out of parliament. Their speeches do not generally fall so pleasantly on the ear as the American addresses, but they contain good-sense without parade. In the papers their speeches read better than they are delivered.

Lord Brougham was a great luminary in the British house of peers in 1839, but had not that influence which his extraordinary talents ought to have commanded. I enquired the reason, and was informed that he was changeable, had no firmness, and could not be trusted. He was a great and talented orator, possessed a mind of great strength and compass, and he used the classic and pure English language to express himself. He possessed a strong vein of caustic satire that run through almost all his speeches. He seemed to be misanthropic to some degree, and on the administration of the government he poured out torrents of scorching invectives, and at times old English abuse. He was always respectful to the crown, as he called the queen, but her ministers were pickled down in gall and bitterness. Lord Brougham was large and rather robust and


rough in his person. His dress was plain, and it seemed that he paid but little attention to it. His head was remarkably large to even the size of his large person, and he appeared, as he was, both mind and body, a powerful North Britain. Lord Wellington had the most influence in the house of lords, and, in fact, I think he wielded more power in the British nation than any other man or woman. He was old and feeble in 1839,was lean and stooped considerably. He was not an orator, but spoke frequently, and as Benton said of Macon, "wisely to the British peers." He seemed to be embarrassed when speaking, and held his hat in his hand before him mostly when he spoke.

Members of both houses of the British legislature made speeches to convince the audience present more than they do in the congress of the United States. The Americans speak to their constituents and the public more than the British do.

The police-officers and the police-regulations are good and efficient in London. Excellent good-order and peace are preserved in the streets both night and day. I think there must be rigid good-order kept, because there are so many bad characters in the city. If excessive discipline were not observed the bad would take the premises. In our large cities, the evil-disposed are not so bad as they are in the large European cities, and in the same proportion our police is not so rigid as theirs.

I attended the courts of justice frequently in London. Business is conducted with more despatch than with us. Less talk and more action in their courts as well as in their parliament are observed than in the United States. Lord Denman presided at the Old Bailey, and appeared to be such as his character is, an excellent, able judge. He was mild and dignified, with a countenance of serenity and intelligence.

The Juries, twenty-four in number, are sworn at the commencement of the court to try all cases submitted to them during the term. This saves time and does just as well as swearing them for each case.

The government of the old city of London is vested in its own corporation, and its powers are great. At the head of the government is the lord mayor, whose authority is extensive. He is elected annually by the freemen of London, and is generally taken from the aldermen. The lord mayor is a high officer in London, and at the demise of the king, he sets at the head of the privy council.

The livery is a respectable body of men, composed of the freemen, of the city, and is the elective body of London.

The city of London is divided into twenty-six wards, and the mayor and aldermen constitute the court of common-council, which has the power over the treasury, and of the government of this great city.


The Lord Mayor, in 1839, was an excellent officer. He had every morning a rabble of sinners before his court, that could not be equalled for vagabond appearance. The work-house was generally the end of the trial.

Plowing in England is performed with great expense and labor. Four, five, and six horses, at times, are hitched to the same plow, and three or more men to hold the plow, drive etc. One or more is hanging to the beam to keep it in the ground. At times, they run the plow twice in the furrow, and put the plow much deeper in the earth than we do. The plowing in England is always crooked on purpose — perhaps it prevents the land from washing. The French are still more awkward than the English in plowing.

The summers are much cooler in Europe than with us. I saw men reaping in England with woollen clothes on, and their vests buttoned. In reaping, they are slow and particular. They had, in 1839, no machinery to reap their grain. I saw flocks of Irish over in England. Whole families were engaged.

As it was my commission to obtain a loan of money for the canal, and as the market in England was not very favorable, I considered it my duty to visit Paris to see if a loan could be made there.

Chapter CXIV.

Visit to France. — Dover. — Lands at Boulogne. — Monument — French Diligence, a Carriage. — Journey to Paris.

ON the 14th of June, 1839, we left London for Paris, in a fine four-horse coach, carrying the mail for Dover. We passed the celebrated Gad's Hill, where Falstaff was engaged in his robbery. We left London in the forenoon and reached Dover before night. We passed the celebrated old city of Canterbury, which is antiquity itself. All the cities in England appear more ancient than London, as that city grows over antiquity, and the others stop at it.

Canterbury stands on solid ground, near the fenny country, that stretches out south-east, as far as the eye can extend.

The sub-soil of the country between London and Dover is chalk, and as poor as poverty itself, except when it is improved into rich soil. This old city of Dover is one of the old Cinque Ports, and is situated on the British Channel in the gorge of the bluffs or cliffs of chalk rising on each side of it, three or four hundred feet high. It is a small, old city with a large population. The chalk bluffs are perpendicular, and frightful to be near the place on them where King Lear was represented in


the play. I stood on the peaks of those high bluffs, and could see the coast of France like a dim cloud in the horizon.

The debtors in jail in this city, had a wire extended from the prison to the road, and on the end of the wire next the road, a small bell was fastened. This bell was sounded to arrest the passengers, who could see printed matter soliciting alms to relieve the debtors from imprisonment.

I saw on the high bluff east of Dover, an ancient tower, said to have been built by Julius Caesar, It was circular, and it seemed time could not destroy it. The cement binding the rocks together was as hard as the rocks themselves. It was unoccupied. Other towers also stood there of more modern date — some said to have been built by the Saxons. The whole mountain around Dover is excavated for garrisons for soldiers. The government has dug out subteranean abodes for seven thousand troops. In 1805, when Bonaparte threatened the invasion of England, Dover was fortified and made a strong garrison.

I saw also, some very large old pieces of cannon on the bluff. It was said one of these brass cannons could send a ball to Calais in France.

Dover is an uninteresting place; we were pleased to leave it. All those small places live much by extortion on travellers. I agreed to pay our landlord all the contingencies and extras, provided we should have to pay nothing more until we reached the vessel to take us to France, but when the cab-driver got us to the water, near the vessel, we were compelled to pay him again or have a difficulty. Next we had to pay a porter to carry our baggage into the packet, and, lastly, we descended a ladder from the wharf down to the ship, and paid for the use of the ladder. Those extras are the trouble in travelling. I paid all charges to get clear of the importunity of servants, like the girl said, when she married the man to get rid of him.

The packet was a strong British vessel, propelled by steam, and landed us at Boulogne, France, in three or four hours' sail. In the middle of the British Channel, we could see both shores of England and France with ease.

When we landed in France, all was in a bustle, making all sorts of noises and uproar, after the manner of the French. It shows the dislike of the people to one another, when a few hours' sail will land a person in France from England, where there is no similarity of the people or their customs. I had been raised with the French in Illinois, and could speak their language, so I was at home with them. A number of women, with wooden-shoes on and short petticoats, attended the passengers with hand-carts, to convey the baggage to the hotel. The French Government are rigid against smuggling goods, and are exact in examining the baggage, but the officers were polite


and civil to me. They laughed, and excused me from smuggling. At the custom-house my passport was received and sent by mail before me to Paris. Another was given me to authorize us to travel to that city. Our carriage drove us to a fine hotel, where to enter our names, destination, business and general avocation. These statements were also sent to Paris before us. This is the caution the French Government took under the reign of Louis Phillippe, and that did not save him. We remained in Boulogne for some days, and I found the French masses innocent, honest, artless, and I may add, simple. They are kind and obliging. This city contains twenty thousand inhabitants, and is said to be the port where Caesar embarked to conquer England.

All the cities I saw on the continent of Europe are more walled and fortified than in England. I presume the ocean defended England, while the enemy could, in olden times march over the land on the continent, and, therefore, the towns there needed more walled defence than they did in England. In Boulogne, there is an upper and lower town. The upper was fortified, but the lower, and much the best, is built up outside the old walls, and between the old town and the ocean. I examined, in the neighborhood of Boulogne, a site of a large encampment, made by Bonaparte and his army when he was preparing for the conquest of England. In the vicinity, Bonaparte commenced a monument to honor his conquest of England, thinking, no doubt, this monument made in advance, would induce public opinion to assist in accomplishing his object. His Austrian campaign drew him off from England. The monument, although unfinished, is splendid.

A French diligence is within the list of curiosities. It can carry fifteen or twenty persons, and perhaps more, and at times has attached to it from four to eight horses. More passengers ride outside than within, to take the air and see the country. A long ladder is used to get oh the top and to dismount. When the horses are first brought out, they squeal, paw, and snort, as they are not changed from their natural state. Sometimes they are put three or four abreast in the diligence. The French are a droll people.

The beggars attend these carriages as they are going slowly up a hill. The poor, decrepit mortals are lodged sometimes in holes at the foot of the hill, and ready to crawl, creep, or walk by the carriage as it mounts the eminence. The shocking sights of wretchedness, and the heart-rending prayers pour la chartte, will generally obtain them some donations. They learn sympathetic modes of begging, so that they generally succeed to some amount. Begging is a trade, and acts on system.

France is generally a fine, healthy, and beautiful country. The soil is, for the most part, good and productive. It is not


injured by either mountains or morasses to any great extent, and produces to the inhabitants a bountiful support. The masses, so far as I could discover, were happy, and in return for the blessings the country afforded them, they very justly gave it the name of "La Belle France."

The road from Boulogne passes the ancient city of Abbeville, built by the English when they possessed the country. Montreal, another city on the road, is built on a rock, and was, in olden times, a place of strength. The road also passes Beauvais, which is a large and ancient city. It is the capital of the department of the Oise. St. Denis is rather a suburb of Paris, being only a few miles from the great metropolis.

Chapter CXV.

City of Paris. — Public Buildings are Splendid and Brilliant. — Soldiers for the City Police. — Churches. — Palais Royal. — Louvre. — The Paintings. — Monument for Bonaparte. — Obelisk. — Parliament. — Garden of Plants. — Elysian Fields.

PARIS, the most important city in the world except London, would require volumes to describe it, and then the reader would have but a faint idea of it in comparison to actual examination. It is built on a flat on both sides of the river Seine, but mostly on the north side: latitude 48° 50' north, and longitude 2° 20' east of London. It is said to be sixteen or eighteen miles in circumference, and contains almost everything which the imagination of man can conceive. Its dates, its commencement in very remote antiquity. It is said that Paris was commenced first on the Island in the Seine, five hundred years before the conquest by the Romans, which was some years before the Christian era. The main aim and object of the inhabitants of this city seems to be to reach the perfection of the gay, grand, and brilliant in everything. All the public buildings, churches, bridges, and triumphal arches are built more for a striking, brilliant, and imposing appearance than for utility. French utility, in a great measure, is a splendid appearance. This principle runs through the whole nation, and governs them in both public and private transactions. This is the reason that the French enjoy so many holidays, and are never so well pleased as when they are present at some grand national exhibition. Bonaparte indulged them in this passion until he exhausted the country and was compelled to abandon it. The pleasure in the heart of the Frenchman, to enjoy a victory of the grand-army over any other nation, but particularly the English, would induce the soldiers to suffer all the privations of a campaign, and the risk of death itself without a murmur.


The city of Paris contains upwards of a million of souls enjoying life more than any other people on the globe. The great philosophy of the French is to enjoy pleasure in all its various phases and beauties. In order to accomplish this great French desideratum, they steer as clear of vice and crime as will secure them from misery in this continual career of pleasure through life.

France is healthy, and exceedingly fertile, which affords the inhabitants a plentiful support and excellent health. These considerations add much to the career of French happiness.

About fifteen hundred soldiers; are the city police, who observe peace and order at the point of the bayonet, if necessary. A part of the "army of the line," containing ninety thousand soldiers, were encamped in and near Paris when I was there in 1839. An attempt at revolution had recently been quelled, and the government was fearful of another revolt, which was the reason of this large army being in this vicinity. The streets were filled with soldiers and martial music. Public opinion has placed the army in France on different principles than it is based in England or in the United States, in France, the common soldier is more elevated and respected than in those other countries. The best young men join the army in France, and have an opportunity to rise by merit. No corporal punishment is inflicted on the French soldiers. A moral and elevated sentiment effects the whole object without stripes in the French army. The citizens, meeting the militaire in the streets of Paris, bow to them uncovered, with respect. The soldiers in the French army occupy a higher standing with their nation than ours do with us. This is the nature of their government, and is also the reason that a military life in France is the great highroad to honor and power, and sometimes to the throne itself.

The churches in Paris are grand and splendid, and would require volumes to describe them. The church of "Notre Dame" is among the most magnificent and most ancient in the city. It was commenced in 1163, and the site where it stands was long before occupied by a heathenish house of worship. It is 415 feet long, 150 wide, and 150 high. Two towers are constructed, rising 204 feet over each door, and are each 40 feet square. To the top of these towers are 289 steps, where persons may enjoy a panoramic view of the city of Paris. An ancient bell is hung in one of these towers weighing 92,000 lb and the clapper 976 lb. It requires sixteen men to sound the bell. It is called Emanuel.

"La Madeline" is another elegant and superb church, situated on the Boulevard Madeline. In 1806, Bonaparte changed it into a temple, dedicated to the glory of the French arms, but in 1816, it was again converted into a temple of worship. This


edifice is 326 feet long and 130 wide. The paintings in this church are splendid. Our Saviour is represented granting pardon to Mary Magdalene, on her knees, for her sins, and ministering angels are receiving the redeemed sinner to their bosoms.

"St. Roch" is another temple of worship, situated on La Rue St. Honore. Louis XIV laid the corner-stone of this church in the year 1653. It is celebrated for its purity and piety. I saw, in the front of this church and the surrounding buildings, the boles of the balls shot by Bonaparte's Soldiers in the "affair of the sections," as it was called, when the rabble was dispersed by powder and lead.

The palaces and royal residences are constructed in this city with a splendor and elegance that I think stands unrivalled on earth. All that French taste and science, together with unlimited sums of money, could accomplish, have been expended upon these royal palaces.

The Palais Royal is a building which of itself is almost a city. The ancestors of Louis Phillippe built it for a residence. At this day, it is occupied by mercantile shops, and other uses, down to gambling-houses. Thus has this royal residence fallen, and it is to be hoped that all royalty in the world may soon follow.

The old palace known as the "Louvre" was to me the most interesting, as it contained the greatest number of fine paintings perhaps in the world. The works of the most celebrated masters in the world are here exhibited, free of charge. The paintings of Michael Angelo, Vandyck, Rubens, Correggio, Amyntas, and others almost as celebrated, are here presented to the public. It is almost worth a voyage across the Atlantic to see these paintings. Also, are there, the paintings of our countryman, West: Christ healing the Sick, etc.

In some parts of the palace are statuary in abundance, which stand unrivalled. Also, are exhibited the royal carpeting, woven in the factory of the Goblin, representing the persons and articles of royalty.

There is, in the city, a large plat of public ground known as "La Place Vendome." This piece of ground was once occupied by a royal hotel, but at this day it is kept for the public. In 1806, Bonaparte erected a splendid and magnificent monument on this ground, in honor of the campaign of 1805. It is formed on the model of the Pillar of Trajan at Rome, but is larger. The monument is circular, and one hundred and thirty-five feet high. It presents a grand and towering monument of the genius of Bonaparte, who conceived/the design, and the architects who built it. The pillar is covered with the metal of the cannon captured from the Russian and Austrian armies in 1805, and cast so as to cover the monument. On it is inscribed the dates of victories, the names of the armies, and the generals


commanding. On the top was the statue of Bonaparte, but the allied armies, in 1814, shamefully took it down. In 1833,the French authorities replaced it, which I saw and much admired in 1839.

The obelisk, brought from Luxor, in Egypt, is a great curiosity. It is of a solid rock seventy-two feet high, tapering from the bottom to t