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Full text of "Historical sketches of Kentucky : embracing its history, antiquities, and natural curiosities, geographical, statistical, and geological descriptions; with anecdotes of pioneer life, and more than one hundred biographical sketches of distinguished pioneers, soldiers, statesmen, jurists, lawyers, divines, etc."

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AND -J. A. & U. P. JAMES, 





ENTERED, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1847, by 


In the -Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States, in and for the 
Eastern District of Kentucky. 

JAMES & CO., Stereotypew, Cincinnati. 
J A. & U. F. JAMES' Steam Press. 


THE late H. P. Peers, of the city of Maysville, laid the foundation for the work which is 
now presented to the reading community. Mr. Peers designed it to be simply a small 
Gazetteer of the State ; and had collected, and partially arranged for publication, the major 
part of the materials, comprising a description of the towns and counties. Upon his de- 
cease, the materials passed into the hands of the Author, who determined to remodel them, 
and make such additions as would give permanency and increased value to the work. He 
has devoted much labor to this object; but circumstances having rendered its publication 
necessary at an earlier day than was contemplated, some errors may have escaped, which 
more time, and a fuller investigation would have enabled him to detect. 

Serious obstacles have been encountered, in the preparation of the Biographical Sketches. 
Many of those which appear in the work, were prepared from the personal recollections of 
the Author ; while others have been omitted, because he did not know to whom he could 
apply for them, or having applied, and in some instances repeatedly, failed in procuring them. 
This is his apology, for the non-appearance of many names in that department, which are 
entitled to a distinguished place in the annals of Kentucky. 

In the preparation of the work, one design of the Author has been to preserve, in a durable 
form, those rich fragments of local and personal history, many of which exist, at present, 
only in the ephemeral form of oral tradition, or are treasured up among the recollections of 
the aged actors in the stirring scenes, the memory of which is thus perpetuated. These 
venerable witnesses from a former age, are rapidly passing away from our midst, and with 
them will be buried the knowledge of much that is most interesting in the primitive history 
of the commonwealth. It is from sources such as we have mentioned, that the materials 
for the future historian are to be drawn ; and, like the scattered leaves of the Sybil, these 
frail mementos of the past should be gathered up and preserved with religious veneration. 
If the Author shall have succeeded, in thus redeeming from oblivion any considerable or 
important portion of the early history of the State, his design will be fully accomplished, and 
his labor amply rewarded. 

Of all the members of this great republican confederacy, there is none whose history is 
more rich in the variety, quality, and interest of its materials. The poet, the warrior, and 
the statesman can each find subjects, the contemplation of which will instruct him in his art ; 
and to the general reader, it would, perhaps, be impossible to present a field of more varied 
and attractive interest. 

It is proper that the Author should state that he has received the assistance of many able 
pens, in the preparation of the work. The Outline History," embracing about eighty 
pages, was written by John A. M'Clung, Esq., of Washington. William P. Conwell, Esq., 
of Maysville, has rendered important aid, particularly in the biographical department. He 
is the writer of the Sketches, among others, of the Hon. Henry Clay, Gen. George Rogers 
Clark, Col. Daniel Boone, and Gen. Z. Taylor. The author is also greatly indebted to Col. 
Charles S. Todd, of Shelby county ; Henry Waller, R. H. Stanton, and William H. Wads- 
worth, Esqrs., of the city of Maysville ; Noble Butler, Esqr. (author of a late and excellent 


work on English Grammar), of the city of Louisville; Bruce Porter, Esq., of the town of 
Flemingsburg ; Thomas W. Riley, Esq., of Bardstown ; and Professor O. Beatty, of Centre 
College, Danville, for valuable contributions. Col. Todd furnished some seven or eight 
biographical sketches ; among them, those of Gov. Shelby and Judge Innes. Mr. Waller 
prepared the whole of the county of Mason, Mr. Butler a large portion of the county of 
Jefferson, Mr. Porter a portion of the county of Fleming, Mr. Riley a portion of the county 
of Bullitt, and Mr. Beatty the article on the Geology of Kentucky. A distinguished citizen 
of the State contributed the interesting Sketch of the Court of Appeals. 

The Historical Sketches of the several religious denominations, were prepared by the 
following gentlemen : Rev. John L. Waller, editor of the Western Baptist Review, Frank- 
fort, of the Baptist church ; Rev. W. W. Hill, editor of the Presbyterian Herald, Louisville, 
of the Presbyterian church ; Rev. George W. Smiley,* of the Northern Kentucky Confer- 
ence, of the Methodist Episcopal church ; Rev. James Shannon, president of Bacon College, 
Harrodsburg, of the Christian Church ; Rt. Rev. B. B. Smith, D.D., bishop of the Diocese 
of Kentucky, of the Episcopal church ; Rev. Rich. Beard, D.D., president of Cumberland 
College, Princeton, of the Cumberland Presbyterian church ; and Rev. M. J. Spalding, D.D., 
Vicar-General of Kentucky, Louisville, of the Roman Catholic church. 

He also acknowledges his indebtedness to the following gentlemen, for information con- 
cerning their counties, for incidents connected with the early settlement of the State, or for 
biographical sketches, &c., viz : 

James W. Carter, Esqr., of Adair county ; W. F. Evans, Esqr., of Allen ; J. W. Crock- 
ett, and J. H. Stovall, Esqrs., of Ballard ; B. N. Crump, Esqr., of Barren ; James M. Pres- 
ton, Esqr., of Boone ; Hon. Garrett Davis, Dr. Joseph H. Holt, Dr. William M. Garrard, 
and William C. Lyle, John G. Scrogin, and W. G. Talbot, Esqrs., of Bourbon ; Rev. J. 
C. Young, D.D., president of Centre College, of Boyle ; General John Payne, of Bracken ; 
John Hargis, Esq., of Breathitt ; Hon. John Calhoun, Joseph Smith, Joseph Allen, and 
Francis Peyton, Esqrs., of Breckinridge ; W. T. Samuels, and Michael O. Wade, Esqrs., 
of Bullitt ; B. J. Burke, and L. W. Moore, Esqrs., of Butler ; Charles B. Dallam, and 
Marcus M. Tyler, Esqrs., of Caldwell ; E. H. Curd, Esqr., of Calloway ; Gen. James 
Taylor, and S. D. Smalley, Esqr., of Campbell ; David Owen, Esq., of Carroll ; G. W. 
Crawford, Esqr., of Carter; Daniel H. Harrison, A. G. Stites, and R. R. Lansden, Esqrs., 
of Christian ; W. Flanagan, and Willis Collins, Esqrs., of Clarke ; Dougherty White, and 
William Woodcock, Esqrs., of Clay ; R. Maxcy, and E. Long, Esqrs., of Clinton ; R. L. 
Bigham, and H. R. D. Coleman, Esqrs., of Crittenden ; E. B. Gaither, and Th, T. Alex- 
ander, Esqrs., and Dr. David R. Haggard, of Cumberland ; John P. Devereaux, Esqr., of 
Daveiss ; A. M. Barrett, Esqr., of Edmonson; Robert Clarke, Esqr., of Estill ; Hon. George 
Robertson, Gen. Leslie Combs, Gen. John M. M'Calla, Col. Richard Spurr, Hon. Robert 
Wickliffe, Rev. Robert J. Breckinridge, D.D.,and John C. Breckinridge, William S. Waller, 
John Bradford, James Logue, Samuel D. M'Cullough, and Fielding R. Bradford, Esqrs., of 
Fayette; C. C. Lane, and W. S. Botts, Esqrs, of Fleming; Edwin Trimble, and Daniel 
Hager, Esqrs., of Floyd ; Gov. William Owsley, Hon. Benjamin Monroe, Hon. James 
Harlan, Gen. Peter Dudley, Col. James Davidson, Orlando Brown, John W. Finnell, Wil- 
liam D. Reed, H. I. Bodley, and A. S. Mitchell, Esqrs., of Franklin ; Major J. W. Gibson, 
and R. A. Hatcher, Esqr., of Fulton; Rev. Benjamin Fuller, of Gallatin ; A. J. Brown, 
Esqr., of Garrard; John W. M'Cann, Esqr., of Grant; Jack Thomas, Esqr., of Grayson ; 
G. W. Montague, Esqr., of Greene ; W. L. 1'oage, Esqr., of Greenup ; D. L. Adair, Esqr., 
of Hancock ; Dr. Samuel B. Young, and Thomas D. Brown, Esqr., of Hardin ; E. V. 
TJnthank, Esqr., of Harlan ; Gen. L. B. Desha, and J. V. Bassett, Esqr., of Harrison ; 

* It is due to Mr. Smiley to state, that the Sketch of the Methodist Episcopal Church, was prepared 
by him upon a few days' notice. 


Robert D. Murray, and John Bowman, Esqrs., of Hart ; Dr. Owen Glass, O. H. Hillyer, 
and J. E. M'Callister, Esqrs., of Henderson ; W. B. Edmunston, and N. E. Wright, 
Esqrs., of Hickman ; Samuel Woodson, Esqr., of Hopkins ; Hon. Henry Pirtle, Tal. P. 
Shaffner, Esqr., and Dr. Bullitt, of Jefferson ; R. E. Woodson, Esqr., of Jessamine : John 
House, Esqr., of Johnson ; Hon. James T. Morehead, and J. W. Menzies, Esqr., of Ken- 
ton ; B. H. Ohler, Esqr., of Knox ; John Duncan, and William Beelar, Esqrs., of Larue ; 
G. F. Hatcher, Esqr., of Lawrence ; W. B. Hampton, Esqr., of Letcher ; R. G. Carter, 
Esqr., of Lewis ; J. Campbell, Esqr., of Lincoln ; William Gordon, Esqr., of Livingston ; 
M. B. Morton, and Albert G. Rhea, Esqrs., of Logan : Abner Oldham, Esqr., Col. John 
Speed Smith, and Col. David Irvine, of Madison ; Nicholas S. Ray, Esqr., and Captain 
Edmund A. Graves, of Marion ; Henry Hand, Esqr., of Marshall ; William Fairleigh, 
Esqr., of Meade ; Hon. Adam Beatty, Col. James C. Pickett, Dr. J. M. Duke, R. H. Col- 
lins, and Joseph B. Boyd, Esqrs., of Mason ; William H. Jones, Esqr., of M'Cracken ; 
Gen. Robert B. M 'Afee, Captain Samuel Daveiss, Dr. C. Graham, and James M 'Afee, 
Esqr., of Mercer ; William Butler, Esqr., of Monroe ; Richard Apperson, Esqr., of Mont- 
gomery; James Elliott, Esqr., of Morgan ; Charles F. Wing, Esqr., of Muhlenburg ; Hon. 
Charles A. Wickliffe, G. Clayton Slaughter, and A. G. Botts, Esqrs., of Nelson ; Charles 
Henderson, H. D. Taylor, and Stephen Stateler, Esqrs., of Ohio ; G. Armstrong, Esqr., 
of Oldham ; J. W. Bacon, Esqr., of Owen ; William Williams, Esqr., of Owsley ; S. 
Thomas Hauser, Esqr., of Pendleton ; John D. Mims, Esqr., of Pike ; E. Kelley, Esqr., 
of Pulaski ; Col. Elisha Smith, of Rockcastle ; Joseph T. Rowe, Esqr., of Russell ; John 
T. Steppe, Esqr., and Rev. Howard Malcom, D.D., of Scott; Thomas J. Throop, I. 
Shelby Todd, and John H. Todd, Esqrs., and Rev. Abraham Cook, of Shelby ; John 
Hoy, Esqr., of Simpson; Ralph Lancaster, Esqr., of Spencer; W. H. Wells, and R. E. 
Glenn, Esqrs., of Todd ; Kain A. M'Caughan, and Robert Baker, Esqrs., of Trigg ; W. 
Samuels, Esqr., of Trimble ; J. W. Cromwell, Esqr., of Union ; Hon. A. W. Graham, 
Hon. Joseph R. Underwood, and Loyd Berry, Esqr., of Warren ; W. B. Booker, Esqr., 
of Washington; W. Simpson, Esqr., of Wayne; W. S. Cooke, and Squire Gatliffe, 
Esqrs., of Whitley ; Major Herman Bowmar, of Woodford. Also, to Thomas B. Steven- 
son, Esqr., Dr. J. R. Buchanan, and Rev. Thornton A. Mills, of Cincinnati. 


ADAIR, Gen., at the battle of New Orleans- -59, 84 
Adams, John, second President, very odious 

in Kentucky ............................. 54 

Adams and Jackson, pre3idential contest be- 

tween ................................... 83 

Alien and sedition laws condemned ......... 55 

Allen, Col., killed .......................... 71 

Annexation, first step in territon al .......... 5 

-- of Texas, and its effects ....... 97 

Bank, first chartered in Kentucky ........... 56 

- of Kentucky chartered ............... 65 

- , forty independent, chartered ......... 88 

- , Commonwealth's, chartered ......... 88 

- .Branch of U. S., in Kentucky ....... 95 

- of Kentucky ....................... 95 

- .Northern, of Kentucky .............. 95 

- of Louisville ...................... 95 

Bird, Col., expedition against Kentucky ..... 24 

Blannerhasset, the victim of Burr ....... 59 

Blue Licks, Upper, defeat of Capt. Holder's 

party at ........................ - ......... 25 

Blue Licks, Lower, disastrous battle at ...... 25 

Board of War, in Kentucky ................ 43 

Boone, Mrs., and daughters, first white wo- 

men on Kentucky river- ................ 19 

Boonsborough, founded, and fort built- ...... 19 

, attacked by the Indians 

Bowman, Col., expedition against Chillicothe, 23 
Boyle, John, chief justice of the old court- 90 
Bradford, John, establishes first newspaper 

in Kentucky ............................. 36 

Breckinndge," Robert, first speaker of the H 

of R. 


Brown, James, first secretary of state ....... 45 

-- j John, first delegate to Congress ..... 36 

- , - , letters of, on the independence 

01 Kentucky 
Brown, John, first senator to Congress ...... 

implicated in the Spanish in- 


Brown, John, President Madison's letter in 

defence of - 99 

Bryant's station, attack on 25 

Bullitt, Capt. Thomas, surveying at the Falls, 18 

, Alexander, first speaker of the senate, 45 

Burr, Aaron, arrives in Kentucky 57 

, defeated for the governorship of New 

York- - 57 

Burr, kills Hamilton in a duel 58 

, conceives a plan of an empire 58 

, his character and intrigues 59 

, his project developed. &c. 60 

, Daveiss' motion against, overruled- 60 

, offers Daveiss opportunity to prove his 

charge 61 

Burr, his trial postponed 61 

, his public defence 61 

, his trial again postponed 62 

, acquitted by the grand jury 63 

*, disavows to Mr. Clay any improper de- 
sign 63 

Burr, his real attitude at this time 64 

, his project unfolded 64 

, his letters to Wilkinson and Eaton 64 

, his project denounced and broken up. 64 

Calloway, Col. Richard, moves to Boonsbo- 
rough 19 

Canada, union with Kentucky suggested- 41 


Cannon, first employed in Kentucky 24 

Caroline, schooner, at the battle of New Or- 
leans 80 

Chesapeake, attacked by the Leopard 65 

Clark, Gen. George Rogers, first appearance 

in Kentucky 19 

Clark, expedition against Kaskaskia and Vin- 

ceniies 21 

Clark, expedition against the Ohio Indians- 24 

, expedition from the mouth of Licking, 27 

expedition to the W abash 33 

, appointed generalissimo of French le- 
gions 47 

Clarke, Judge, decides the relief law unconsti- 
tutional 89 

Clarke, Judge, his trial before the legislature- 90 

, , elected governor 97 

Clay. Henry, and Daveiss, intellectual com- 
bat between 62 

Clay, requires of Burr a disavowal of trea- 
sonable designs 63 

Clay and Jackson, presidential contest be- 
tween 94 

Clay and Polk, presidential contest between, 97 

Combs, Capt. Leslie, gallantry of 73 

Congress, old, refers the admission of Ken- 
tucky to the new 37 

Constitution, federal, unpopular in Kentucky, 38 

, first, its features 44 

, new, formed and adopted 56 

Convention, first, on the proposed separation 

from Virginia 30 

Convention second 31 

third 31 

fourth 32 

fifth 36 

sixth 38 

seventh 39 

.eighth 41,42 

. ninth, and last 44 

, to revise the constitution 54, 55 

Corn, first raised in Kentucky 19 

Counties, Kentucky divided into three 24 

Courts, first established 20 

, of common law and chancery 24 

, U. S., for the district of Kentucky, es- 
tablished 28 

Courts, jurisdiction under the first constitu- 
tion 45 

Courts, changes in the system of- 51 

,' district, abolished 56 

, circuit, established 56 

, contest between the Old and New- 91 

, New, organized 92 

Crockett, Coi., remonstrance of 40 

Croghan, Col., defence of Fort Stephenson 75 

Crows, required to be killed 51 

Danville, the seat of the Conventions 30, 36 

Daveiss, Col. Jo. Hamilton, moves against 

Burr 60 

Daveiss, intellectual combat with Henry Clay 62 

Democratic societies, their spirit and object- 47 

Depeau, Charles, a French emissary, letter of, 48 

Desha, Gen. Joseph, elected governor 91 

DuQuesne, invades Kentucky 20 

Edwards, John, senator in Congress 45 

England and France, before the war of 1812, 68 

English spy in Kentucky 41 




Erie, Lake, decisive victory upon 76 

Estill, Capt., defeat of- 24 

Excise law, odious in Kentucky 46, 47 

Fayette county, competes for the seat of gov- 
ernment 45 

Federal government, disaffection towards- -46, 47 

Finley, John, visits Kentucky 18 

Fort, look for the proper name of each 

France and England, their last great struggle, 68 
Frankfort, how chosen as the seat of govern- 

French revolution, how regarded 

emissaries in Kentucky 

Frenchtown, battle of 

Garrard, James, governor of the State 

Genet, citizen, his projects and conduct 

, recalled, and his acts disavowed 

Governor, how chosen under the old consti- 
tution 45 

Greenup, Christopher, elected governor 57 

Hardin, Col. John, murdered by the Indians- 45 

Harmar, Gen., disastrous expedition of 43 

Harrodsburg / founded 1 

Harrison, Gen., marches against Canada 70 

, defence of Fort Meigs 73 

, defeats Proctor at the Thames 78 

Henderson's purchase from the Cherokees- 18 

Holder, Capt., defeat of 25 

Hopkins, Gen., expedition against the Illinois 

Indians 69 

Hull, Gen., surrender of- 68 

Impressment of American seamen 67 

Independence of Kentucky agitated 37 ; 50, 53 

Innis, judge, connected with the Spanish in- 
trigue ' - 

Innis, overrules the motion against BUTT- 

, tried and acquitted ' 

Insurance company at Lexington chartered- 

Jackson, Gen. Andrew, at New Orleans 

and Adams, contest between 

and Clay, contest between- 

Jay, John, odium against, in Kentucky 

-, his treaty with England, how regarded- 

Jefferson, Thomas, elected President ...... 56, 57 

Johnson, Col. Richard M., at the battle of the 

Thames ................................. 78 

Kaskaskia, surrenders to Gen. Clark ........ 22 

Kenton, Simon, settles in Mason county ..... 19 

Kentuckians. drafted ...................... 43, 50 

Kentucky, explored by the Anglo-Saxons-- 17 

- -, traces of the earlier occupants of- 17 

- river, ascended by the McAfees- 18 

- , first log cabin erected in ...... .- 18 

- "Gazette," printed at Lexington- 36 

- - , admitted into the Union .......... 42 

Knox, Col. James, leads the " Long Hunters " 

to Kentucky ............................. 18 

Land law, unfortunate operation of- ......... 23 

Letcher, Robert P., elected g-overnor ........ 97 

Lewis, Col., taken prisoner ................. 71 

Lexington, first blockhouse built ........... 23 

Limitation in actions of ejectment, changed- 65 

Logan's fort, erected and settled ............ 19 

Louisiana, ceded to France ................. 56 

- , purchased by the general govern- 
ment .................................... 57 

Louisville settled .......................... 22 


Madison, George, elected governor ......... 

- , President, letter vindicating Hon. 
James Brown ............................ 98 

Marshall, Col. Thomas ..................... 39 

- , Humphrey, elected U. S. senator- 51 
Martin's station destroyed .................. 24 

Maysville. blockhouse erected .............. 28 

Meigs, fort, attacked ...................... 73, 75 

Mercer county, competes for the seat of gov- 

ernment ................................. 45 

Metcalfe, Gen. Thomas, elected governor- 93 

Michigan, effect of the loss of ............... 68 

Mills, Judge Benjamin, and the old court ---- 90 

Mississippi, proposed to cede the naviga- 

tion of- ..................... .......... 34, 40 

Mississippi, circular of Muter, Innis, and 

others ................................... 34 

Mississippi, negotiations upon the subject- 35 

Mississippi, its navigation secured by treaty, 

Murray, William, opposes the states' rights 

movement ............................... 

Muter, Judge George, attempt to remove 

tter against an independent gov- 



New Orleans, right of deposit at, conceded 

, this right suspended 56 

, preparations for its defence 79 

-, engagement of the 24th De- 
cember 80 

New Orleans, brilliant victory of the 8th of 

January 84 

New Orleans, numbers engaged 86 

Nicholas, George, in the ninth convention- 44 

, first attorney general 45 

, connected with the Spanish intrigue 53 

Nullification, in the legislature 55 

Owsley, Judge William, and the old court- 90 

, , elected governor- 97 

Perry, lieutenant, brilliant victory of 76 

Polk, James K., and Henry Clay, contest be- 

Power, Thomas, a Spanish messenger 

Relief and anti-relief excitement 

laws decided unconstitutional 

excitement in 1842 

Replevin, extended conditionally 

Revolution, French, how regarded 

, the age of startling, not passed- 

Ruddell's station destroyed 

Scott, Gen. Charles, Indian expedition 

, joins Wayne with 1,500 men 

, elected governor 

Sebastian, Judge Benj., attempt to remove 

, interview with the Spanish agent- 

, pensioned by Spain 

, implicated with Burr 

, inquiry into his conduct 

Senators, how chosen under the old constitu- 

Separation from Virginia and the Union, agi- 
tated 37 

Shelby, Isaac, first governor 45 

, reply to Depeau 49 

Slaughter, Gabriel, first lieutenant and acting 

governor 87 

Spain, resents the purchase of Louisiana- 57 

Spanish intrigues in Kentucky 52 

Specie payments suspended 95, 96 

Squirrels, law requiring to be killed 51 

St. Clair. Gen., campaign of 43 

Stephenson, fort, gallant defence of- 75 

Stuart, James, killed by the Indians 18 

Taxes, upon what imposed 45 

Tecumseh, his generous conduct at Fort 

Meigs 74 

Tecumseh, killed at the Thames 78 

Thames, river, victory at the 78 

Treaty of 1783, imperfectly observed- 

with the Indians 51 

Trimble, Lieutenant David 73 

Vincennes, surrenders to Gen. Clark 22 

Virginia, action upon the proposed separa- 
tion by Kentucky .... 41 

Walker, Dr., visits Kentucky 18 

War of 1812, causes of 

feeling in Kentucky and New England, 68 

Washington, Gen., elected President of the 

United States 41 

Wayne, Gen., defeats the Indians at the Ra 

pids 50 

"Western World," newspaper at Frankfort- CO 

. develops Burr's project. &c. 

Wilkinson, Gen. James, settles in Lexington, 29 

voyage to New Orleans- 

his tobacco privileges 

accompanies St. Clair 

commissioned under Wayne- 
how he regarded the Spanish in- 




Wilkinson, commands the U. S. troops in 

Louisiana 57 

Wilkinson, co-operates with Burr 59, 

Winchester, Gen., at the river Raisin 71 






e names of the Counties are in Small 


CLAY 243 


Lewisburg, Muh- 
lenburgCo. 473 

Great Crossings 



Clementsburg 247 

Lexington 203 


. 472 



Lj nn 232 


Cloverport 212 



Litchfield 327 

A v. y & 


Coleman sville -..341 
Columbia 164 


Lockport, Butler C. 222 
Lockport, Henry C. 348 




Concord 401 



London 398 


j| ART 

. 449 

Louisville 355 
Lovelaceville 171 
Lower Blue Licks 480 

Bear Wallow 

Covington 380 
Crab Orchard 402 
Creelsburg 502 





Madisonville 351 






Marion, Crittenden 


Danville 204 

Dover 430 

Downingville 325 
Eddyville 223 

Marion, Owen Co. 490 
Marion, Scott. Co. 508 



Tvr AKS ^ ALL I"' 


TM* 1^1 

Maxville o-J.3 
Mayfield '>'(> 

Elizabethtown 345 

Mayslic-k 480 
Maysville 430 


Fairfield 475 


MEADE 447 

Fairview 535 

Brown sborough 



Middleburg 401 
Midway 553 
Milbourn 171 
Millersburg 193 
Millerstown 328 

Farrnington 327 
Ferry Corner 537 

Flemingsburg 296 
Florence 180 

jjry iisviue 


Minerva 430 




iJur mgton 


Francisvilie 180 
Frankfort 304 


Moorefield 480 



Morgantown 222 
Morlorisville 554 

Campbell sville-... 

Frederick 174 
Fredericktown 545 


Mount Carmel 296 
Mount Eden 532 
Mount Gilead 430 
Mount Pleasant 340 
Mount Sterling 468 
Mount Vernon 500 
Mount Washington 216 


Munfordville 344 
Murphysville 430 



Garnetsville 448 
Garrettsburg - 232 
Georgetown 504 
German town, Brack- 
en Co. 210 
Germantown, Ma- 


Centre Point 


Napoleon 321 
Neatsville 165 


Lewisburg, Mason 

( ;LARK 

Grahampton 447 

New Castle 348 
New Concord 227 
New Haven. 475 




I 'ew Liberty 
New Market 

.- 490 
. 426 

Pleasant Hill-- 
Poplar Flat- 
Poplar Plains 
Port Oliver 
Port Royal 


. 228 


. 166 

. 180 
. 539 
. 540 
. 451 
. 401 
. 180 

UNION . . 

- 177 

Uniontown .... 


Shelby ville 
Shepherdsville . 

. 517 
. 517 
. 216 

Union Village. . . 


Nforth Liberty 
Vorth Middle ton 

.. 479 
. 376 
- . 193 

Wadesborough . . 
Waitsborough . . 
Walnut Flat .... 

. 553 
. 224 

. 499 
. 537 
. 402 
. 180 
. 540 
. 320 
. 429 
. 546 


- 531 
. 473 

T! L. 

ja own 

-- 486 

- 492 


- 410 


i rocior 


* 498 



Washington .... 


- 451 


South Carrollton . 

. 473 
. 411 

uwen on 

-. 250 
-- 490 

Red Mill 

- 416 
- 500 
- 537 
. 448 
- 222 

oouin u mon 


*P r } n g e 


Waynesburg . . . 
West Liberty . . . 
West Point 
West Port 
Whitesburg . . . 
Williamsburg. . 
Williamstown . 

. 402 
. 234 
. 472 
. 335 
. 488 
. 400 
. 547 
. 550 
. 325 


Stamping Ground 
Stephensburg . . 
Taylorsville . . . 

. 332 
. 509 
. 402 
. 346 
. 335 
. 212 
. 532 

Owsley C. H. 


.. 492 
.- 446 

Ruddell's Mills 

. . 193 
- 473 


.- 538 



. . 495 


Tompkinsville . . 

. 534 
. 467 


.- 180 
.- 497 
.. 498 


-. 451 


Woodsonville . . . 

. 552 
. 552 

. 177 
. 250 





.. 216 





ACUFF, Rev. Francis 129 

Adair, Gen. John 165 

Adoption, Indian mode of- 546 

Allen, Rev. Carey H. 135 

" Col. John 168 

" JudgeJohn 203 

Allan, Hon. Chilton 235 

Almanac, first, printed in Kentucky 273 

Anderson, jr , Richard C. 169 

" Col. Richard C. 366 

Appeals, Court of, sketch of- 1 01 

Arnold, Capt. John 554 

Artillery used against Ruddell's station 342 

Artist, remarkable escape of an 451 

Asbury, Bishop Francis - 125 

Ashland, residence of Henry Clay 292 

Ash tree four hundred years old 295 

Asylum for the Blind 356 

" Deaf and Dumb 205 

" " " Insane 267 

Audubon, the Ornithologist 347 

Augusta college 210 

Bacon College, at Harrodsburg 114, 450 

Badin, Rev. Stephen Theodore 140 

Baker, adventures of, with Ward and Kenton, 440 
" Capt. Isaac, escape from the Indians- 442 

Ballard, Capt. Bland 171 

Bank Lick 394 

' of Kentucky, its constitutionality 103 

" U. S., re-charter agitated 283 

Baptist Church, historical sketch of- 108 

established 108 

associations organized 108 

Bracken association 108 

the "great revival" 108 

Baptist Church, Regulars and " Separatists " 110 

the " Restrictionists " Ill 

the " Emancipators " Ill 

schism caused by a negro 

trade Ill 

Baptist Church, the " Reformation " Ill 

early ministers 112 

" number of members 112 

Baptist Theological College, at Covington- - - 380 

Barbour, Maj. Philip N. - 347 

Barnet's station, waylaid 480 

Barry, Maj. Wm. Taylor 277 

Battle of Saline Creek 213 

" on Salt river, disastrous 217 

" near Four-mile Bar 225 

" in Cumberland county '250 

Basin, natural rock 213 

Bear wallow 344 

Bedinger, Maj. George M. 485 

Bell, at the Mammoth Cave 257 

Ben, a negro, anecdote of 300 

Benham, Capt. Robert, remarkable escape- 227 

Betrayal of two Indians 197 

Bibb, Judge George M. 555 

Big Bone Lick 1 80, 454 

Birchett, Rev. Henry ' 126 

Blackburn, Rev. Gideon 137 

Bledsoe, Judge Jesse 203 

Blind, asylum for the 356 

Blue Licks Springs 480 

" battle of, detailed account 481 

Blythe, D. D.. Rev. James 137 

Boat, the last assailed by the Indians 513 

Bones, large, discovered 180, 195 

Boone, Col. Daniel 181 



Boone, his life saved by Kenton 386 

" winters in a cave 452 

" captured, while making sail 4 1 -! 

" his remains re-interred 307 

" and Galloway, misses, rescue of---- 184 

Boonsboroufjh, history of 1S5, 385, 418, 421 

Botanic garden and nursery 232 

Bowman's, Col., expedition 412, 460 

Bowmar, Maj. H., recollections of 554 

Bough, Frederick, adventure of 337 

Boy. rencounter of a, with Indians 337 

" remarkable fortitude of a 513 

Boyle, chief justice John 207 

Bradford, John 276 

Breathitt, Gov. John 211 

Breckinridge, D. D., Rev. John 138 

Hon. John 214 

" Joseph Cabell 280 

Bridge, Natural 233 

Brodhead, Daniel, seils goods at Louisville 362 

Brown, Hon. John 308 

" Hon.James 309 

Dr. Samuel 309 

Dr.PrestonW. 310 

Bryant's station, expedition from 267 

" attack on 269 

Buchanan, Dr. 559 

Buena Vista, battle of 375 

Bullitl's Lick, salt first made at 217 

Bullitt, Col. Alex. Scott 241 

" Capt. Thomas 360, 453 

" Thomas and Cuthbert 366 

Burke, Rev. William 128 

Burrows, Nathan, manufactures hemp and 

mustard 276 

Burying grounds, ancient 180, 209, 334 

Butler, Gen. 222 

Byrne, Rev. William 143 

Cabinet officers, from Kentucky 150 

Caha's escape from the Indians 479 

Cahokia, surrender of 240 

Caldwell, Gen. John 223 

" Dr. Charles 558 

Calloway, Col. Richard 224 

" and Boone, misses, rescue of 184 

Calvin. Capt. Luther, adventures of 438 

Cameron, Rev. Archibald 136, 519 

Campbell, Rev. Alexander Ill, 116, 117 

" Rev. John Poage 135 

" Col. John 227 

Carroll, Charles, of Carrollton 229 

Casey. Col. William 231 

Cassi'day, Michael, adventures of- 298 

Cat, wild, adventure with a 295 

Cave, Mammoth 254 

" where Boone wintered 452 

Caves in Allen county 167 

" Barren 177 

" Bourbon 195 

" Breckinridge 213 

" Christian 233 

" Edmonson 254 

" Hart 345 

" Knox 396 

" Meade 448 

" Mercer 466 

" Rockcastle 501 

" Union 540 

" Warren 541 

" Wayne 548 

" Whitley 550 

Cemetery of giants 253 

Centre college, at Danville 206 

Chambers. Gov. John 443 

Charges d'Affaires, from Kentucky 150 

Chanty. Sisters of, established 143 

Chasm, singular 180 

Chillicothe, expedition against 412, 460 

Christian, Col. William 221, 233 

Church, sketch of 114 

number of members- --115, 118 

" mode of government 116 

' views of 116,117 

union between Stone and 

Campbell 1-20 

Church, Baptist 108 

Church, Christian 114 

" Cumberland Presbyterian 121 

" Episcopal 122 

" Methodist Episcopal 124 

" Presbyterian 132 

" Roman Catholic 139 

" in the Mammoth Cave 254 

Cincinnati, adventure of hunters at 514 

Clark, Gen. George Rogers -236, 385, 457, 459, 460 

Clarke, Gov. James 235 

Clay, Gen. Green 243 

" Hon. Henry 280 

" jr., Lieut. Col. Henry 294 

Clelland, D. D , Re v. Thomas 138 

Cliffs on Kentucky river 466 

Clinton, Gov. De Witt 246 

Coal, see each county 158, 491, 498, 499, 500 

Coburn, Judge John 444 

Coffins found in a mound 167 

Coffman, Mrs., anecdote of 169 

College, Centre, at Danville 206 

" Augusta 210 

" Cumberland, at Princeton 223 

" St. Mary's, at Lebanon 426 

" Bacon, at Harrodsburg 450 

" St. Joseph's, at Bardstown 474 

" Masonic, at Lagrange 488 

" Georgetown 505 

< ; Shelby, at Shelbyville 517 

Colleges, Presidents of, from Kentucky 151 

Combs, Gen. Leslie 277 

Compromise Act 289 

Conch shells in Lincoln county 408 

Congress, list of senators 144 

" representatives 145 

Continental money, heavy discount 362 

Contract, singular 176 

Conventions, list of members of the several, 
to erect a State government, &c. -146, 147, 148 

Cook family, remarkable defence of 306 

Coomes, Wm., first school teacher 140 

escape from the Indians- -458, 460 

Copperas bed, in Lewis county 401 

Corn, first planted in Kentucky 429 

' first raised in Kentucky 45'2 

sold for $60 per bushel 456 

Corwin, lion. Thomas 200 

Corwine, Aaron H. 545 

Cosby, Fortunatus and Robert T. 358, 366 

Court of Appeals, sketch of 101 

its design and safeguards- 102 

judges increased 105 

judges reduced 106 

" catalogue of 106 

" reports of 106 

" jurisdiction of 106 

Courts, Old and New, history of 102 

" in Jefferson county 362 

Craig, Rev. Lewis ' 112 

Craighead, Rev. Thomas B. 134 

Crawford, Rev. James 133 

" Capt. John A. 469 

Creek, Sinking, great curiosity 213 

Crepps, Christian, remarkable escape of 219 

Crist, Henry, desperate rencounter with In- 
dians : 217 

Cross and image, copper 376 

Crouch and Mayes, hung without trial 320 

Cruise, Capt. 383 

Cumberland falls 246, 550 

" college, at Princeton 223 

u Presbyterian Church, sketch of, 1^1 

" river, passage through Pine 

Mountain 396 

Cunningham, Capt. Isaac 234 

Curiosities, natural 233 

Dancing school, first, at Lexington 273 

Daniel, Walker ' 207 

Daveiss, Col. Joseph Hamilton 251 

" Mrs., intrepidity of 404 

" Samuel, recaptures his family 404 

" Capt. Samuel 464 

David, Rev. Mr. 143 

Davidson, Col. James 352 

Dead Sea, in the Mammoth Cave 260 

Deaf and Dumb Asylum 205 



Deshsi, Gen Joseph 515 

Devil's Pulpit," on the Kentucky river 466 

Dog, remarkable instance of fidelity 298 

Dogs, two cur, defeat two Indians 550 

Donaldson, Israel, teaches school at Mays- 

ville 431 

Douglass, James, visits Big Bone Lick 181 

Downing. Francis, incident of 178 

" Col. Timothy, adventure of 437 

Drake, Dr. Daniel 557 

Drennon's Lick 349 

Dry goods first sold in Louisville 362 

" creek, singular fact concerning 382 

Dudley, Col. William 294 

" Dr. Benjamin W. 557 

Duke, Dr. Basil 442 

Durbin, IX D., Rev. John P. 200 

Earthquakes, dreadful 363 

Edmonson, Capt. John 261 

Elder, Rev. G. A. M. 143 

Emancipators, in the Baptist Church Ill 

Episcopal Church, sketch of 122 

Estill, Capt. James 262, 470 

Estill's station, attack on 422 

Executions, criminal, in Jefferson county- 362 

Falls, Cumberland 246 

" Little Renick's creek 250 

" of the Ohio, canal around 365 

Falmouth, landing of the British at 495 

False news, divulging, punished 363 

Female courage 269, 306. 404, 475, 501 

" magnanimity 487 

" Seminary, see the counties-3S2, 507,518 

Fever, fatal prevalence of 364 

Filson's description of Kentucky 154 

Findlay, John, first pioneer of Kentucky 182 

First grist mill in Kentucky 273 

: ' paper " " " 510 

" successful steamboat 273 

Fitch, John 479 

Flaget, Rt. Rev. Dr., bishop of Kentucky 142 

Fleming, Col. John 299 

Flint arrow heads 295 

Floyd, Col. John 303, 362, 366, 518 

" Col. G. R. Clark 366 

Fortifications, ancient, in Allen county 167 

Boone " 180 

Bourbon " 193 

Carroll " 229 

Fayette " 294 

Greenup " 332 

natural, in Hancock" . 334 

ancient, in Hopkins " 351 

" Knox " 336 

Larue " 397 

Mercer " 452 

Montgomery 462 

Pendleton 494 

Warren " 542 

Four-mile bar, battle near 225 

Fournier, Rev. M. 141 

Franklin, Benjamin 317 

Fulgurites, found in Fleming county 297 

Fulton, Robert 319 

Gallatin, Albert 321 

Gano, Rev. John 113 

Garrard, Gov. James- 110, 200, 322 

" Capt. William, his troop 199 

Gauntlet, running the 200 

"Gazette, Kentucky," established 265 

Geiger, Col. 366 

Geological formations of Kentucky 1 55 

George, a negro 636 

Georgetown College 505 

Girty, Simon 271 

Gold found in Bracken county 210 

Governor, a Baptist minister elected 110 

Governors, list of 144 

" of other States, from Kentucky- 149 

" Lieutenant, list of 144 

of other States from 

Kentucky 150 

Grain, rude mills for grinding 457 

Grant, Col. John 326 

" Samuel 326 

Graves, Maj. Benjamin 327 

Graves, ancient, in Bourbon county 194 

" " in Warren county 543 

Grayson, Col. William 328 

"Great Revival" 119, 130 

Greathouse, Capt. 511 

Greene, Gen. Nathaniel 329 

Greenupj Gov. Christopher 332 

Greeneville, Gen. Adair defeated at 165 

" Groves," in Meade county 448 

Grundy, Judge Felix 547 

Hail-storm, remarkable 408 

Haggard. Rev. David 126 

Hancock, John 334 

Hardin, Capt. William 213. 339, 479 

" Col. John 338 

" Gen.MartinD. 547 

" Hon. Benjamin 478 

Hargrove, Capt., rencounter with Indians 499 

Harlan, Maj. Silas 340 

Harney, Dr. 558 

Harrison, Col. Benjamin 344 

" fort, brilliant defence of 368 

Harpe's Head, legend of the 352 

Harpe, " Big" and " Little," freebooters 352 

Harrod. James 459, 462 

Harrodsburg Springs 449 

history of 452 

Hart, Dr., first physician in Kentucky 140 

" Silas, or " Sharp Eye " 337 

" Nathaniel, the elder 422 

" Capt. Nathaniel T. G. 345 

" Henry Clay 345 

Haw, Rev. James 126 

Hays, John, brilliant oratory of 476 

Hazle-Patch, attack on emigrants near 408 

Hemp manufactories 265, 276 

Henderson, Col. Richard 347 

Henry, Patrick 349 

Hickman, Rev. William - 112 

" Gen. Richard 235 

" Capt. Paschal 350 

Higgins' blockhouse, adventure at 343 

" Hill, Indian," a natural curiosity 254 

Hinckston, Capt. John 342 

Historical Society, Kentucky 356 

Holder, Capt., pursues Indians 481 

Hopkins. Gen. Samuel 347, 359 

Horse-stealing 386 

Hospital, Marine 356 

Howard, John 234 

" Benjamin 276 

Howe, Rev. Joseph P. 136 

" Rev. John 136 

Hubbell's, Capt. Wm., boat attacked 510 

Imlay's description of Kentucky 153 

Incident, singular 197 

" romantic 325 

Indian ornaments 194 

villages 194 

singular manoeuvre of an 510 

Indians, manners and customs, &c. 201 

attack on emigrants 227 

" last expedition into Kentucky- -391. 556 

" cruelty to prisoners 217, 513 

Innis, Judge Harry 313 

Internal improvement system 286 

Iron mountain 472 

Irvine, Capt. Christopher 423 

" Col. William 423 

Jackson, Gen. Andrew 288 

Jefferson, Thomas 373 

Jessamine creek, origin of its name 376 

Johnson, Tom, the poet 207 

" Col. Richard M. 377 

" Col. Robert 515 

" Col. James 515 

" Maj. John T. 515 

" Mrs., narrow escape of- 550 

Judiciary, its independence secured 101 

Judges, how to be removed 101 

" of high courts, from Kentucky 150 

"Jump Off" 490 

Kaskaskia captured 240 

Kennan, William, adventure of- 300 

Kennedy, Peter, narrow escape of 336 

Keuton, Gen. Simon 382, 438, 440 



Kentucky, situation, boundaries and extent- 153 

" face of the country 153 

Imlay's description of 153 

" Filson's description of 154 

" statistics of " 144 

" organic remains 160 

soil 161 

" early manners and customs 161 

" wedding ceremonies 16 

" building cabins 164 

" population, from 1790 to 1840 153 

" principal rivers 154 

" geological forma.tions 154 

" river, settlements at its mouth 228 

Kincheloe's station, attack upon 53 

King's Mountain, victory at 526 

Knob Lick, near Danville 403 

Knobs, in Meade county 448 

Knoll, in Larue county 397 

Knox, Gen. Henry 396 

La Fayette, Gen. 263 

Lancaster, John, adventures of 545 

Larue, John 397 

Lawrence. James 399 

Law schools 265,356 

Lead and lead ore 159,446 

Lee, Gen. Henry 442 

" Rev. Wilson 127 

Leeper, Capt. John 353 

Legislature, first held in the West 347 

Letcher, Gov. Robert P. 400 

Lewis, Capt. Meriwether 401 

Lexington Light Infantry * 345 

Lick, Knob 403 

" White, a great curiosity 322 

Li Hard, Re v.Joseph 127 

Ljme. hydraulic, in Estill county ; 262 

Limestone formations 155, 156, 157 

Lincoln. Gen. Benjamin 409 

Little river, sinks and re-appears 233 

" Turtle, Indian chief 165, 489 

Livingston, capture and rescue 496 

' RobertR. 410 

Logan, Gen. Benjamin 403, 41 1 

" Col. John 408 

" Judge William 519 

" an Indian 415 

Logan's fort, defence of- 403 

Logston, Big Joe, adventures of 329 

Long Run, defeat on 172 

Loreito, sisterhood of- 141 

Louisville, view of 358 

; ' established as a town 360 

Love adventure of Kenton 383 

Lunatic Asylum, at Lexington 267 

Lyle, Rev. John- 136 

Lythe, Rev. John 122 

Madison, Gov. George .302, 310 

" James 425 

Magna charta, Kentucky 347 

Mammoth Cave 254 

Marion, Gen. Francis 426 

Marshall, Rev. Robert 134 

'' Humphrey 317 

" Chief Justice John 427 

" Col. Thomas 433 

" Capt. Thomas 437.442 

" Alexander K. 442 

Martin's station, surrender of 342 

Mason, the outlaw 354 

" George 428 

county, first settled by Kenton 384 

" scene of last Indian expedi- 
tion 391 

Massie, Rev. Peter 126 

May, John 435 

Mayes and Couch, hung without trial 326 

Maysville, settled in 1784 430 

" partiality of the Indians towards- 431 

McAfee family visit Kentucky 453 

" providential escape of 456 

" Gen. Robert B. 464 

" Samuel 461. 4(52 

" Robert 4fi] 

William 462 

" George, sen. 462 


McAfee, James 462 

" Jane, sen. 462 

McCalla. Andrew 276 

McChord, Rev. James 137 

McClelland's station, defeat at 385 

" attacked 509 

McClung, Judge William 333. 442 

McClure, Rev. Andrew 134 

" Mrs. ; rescue of 551 

" Davis and Caffee, adventures of- 407 

" Lieut. Narhan 499 

McConnell, Alexander, adventure of 272 

McCracken, Capt. Virgin 389, 446 

McFadin's station, anecdote of- 542 

McFarland, Rev. John 137 

McGary, Maj. Hugh 459,461,403 

McGreedy, Rev. James 347 

Me Henry, Rev. Barnabas 1 27 

McKee, Col. William R. 294 

McKendree, Bishop William 130 

McKinley's adventure with a cat 295 

McMurtries, Dr., sketches of Louisville 364 

Meade, Capt. James- 448 

Medical colleges 265, 356 

Menifee, Richard H. 294 

Mercer, Gen. Hugh 465 

Merrill, Mrs., attacked by Indians 475 

Metals and other minerals 159 

Metcalfe, Gov. Thomas -, 484 

Methodist Episcopal Church, sketch of 124 

" ' " statistics of 129 

Military Institute, Western 508 

Mills, first, in Kentucky 273, 510 

" used by the pioneers 457 

Judge Benjamin 202 

Ministers, Foreign, from Kentucky 150 

Mississippi river, navigation of- 528 

Missouri question 287 

Montgomery family, attack on 405 

" Gen. Richard 471 

Monroe, James 467 

Monterey, capitulation of- 374 

Moore, Rev. James 123 

Morehead, Hon. James T. 395 

Morgan, Gen. Daniel 472 

Morgan's station captured 470 

Morrison, Col. James 277 

Mounds 167, 176, 397, 469, 533, 542 

Mountains, in Harlan county 339 

Muhlenburg, Gen. Peter 438 

Mummies found in Mammoth Cave 256 

Musgrove's mill, battle at 525 

Nail cutting, invented 273 

Natural Bridge 233 

Nelson, Rev. David 137 

" Thomas 478 

Nerinckx, Rev. Charles 141 

Newspapers, oldest in the State 192 

" in Louisville 338 

Nicajack expedition 552 

Northcott, Rev. Benjamin 128 

Oak pole found in the Mammoth Cave 259 

O'Cull, Rev. James 128 

Ogden, Rev. Benjamin 127 

Oil well, in Cumberland 247 

Okeechobee, battle of 371 

Oldham, Col. William 488 

Ormsby, Judge Stephen 366 

Orr. Col Alexander D. 442 

Owen, Col. Abraham 490,517 

Owsley. Gov. William 492 

Pacolet river, fort on, captured 524 

Page, Rev. John 128 

Palo Alto, decisive victory at 372 

Paper mill, first in Kentucky 372 

Patent of John Fox. oldest in Kentucky 399 

Patterson. Col. John 275, 509 

Payne, Col. Devall 443 

Peers, Rev. Benjamin Orr 123 

Pendleton, Edmund 495 

Penitentiary, at Frankfort 305 

Perry, Com. Oliver Hazard 497 

Philips. Philip 397 

Philosophy of Edmund Rogers 176 

Pig, remarkable story of a 465 

Pike, Gen. Zebulon M. 498 




Pioneers of North Kentucky 384 

" injustice done them 39 

Pit, Bottomless, in the Mammoth Cave 260 

Plaster of Paris, in Clinton county 246 

" Point of Rocks " 490 

'Pond Branch" 490 

Pope, Col. William - 366 

Gov. John 547 

Poplar mountain, beautiful view from 246 

Population of the State, 1790 to 1840 151 

" of counties and county towns, 

1840 151 

of the principal towns, 1810 to 1840 153 

Port William, laid out 229 

Poythress, Rev. Francis 125 

Prather, Thomas 366 

Prentice, George D. 358 

Presbyterian Church, Cumberland, sketch of, 121 

" sketchof 132 

" early ministers 132, 133 

Prisoners whipped to death by Indians 217 

Proctor, Rev. Joseph 262 

Protective policy, Henry Clay's course 283' 

Pulaski, Count Joseph 499 

Race, foot, extraordinary 301 

Rankin. Rev. Adam 134 

Rannells, Rev. Samuel 135 

Ray, Rev. John 128 

" Gen. James, succession of adventures, 458 

Red river iron works 262 

Relics, ancient 542 

Representatives in Congress, list of 145 

in Virginia legislature- -147, 458 

" under first constitution 148 

Replevins, retrospective, unconstitutional-" 103 

Resaca de la Palma. victory at 373 

" Revival, the great " 119, 130 

Rhodes, Beacham, escape of 297 

Rice, Rev. David 133 

Ridge, Dry 326 

Rivers, principal, in Kentucky 154 

" in the Mammoth Cave 261 

Robertson, Chief Justice George 104, 322 

Rockcastle river 500 

Rocks, remarkable 230. 233, 254, 540 

Rogers, Edmund 175 

Roman Catholic Church, sketch of 139 

" ' statistics of 141 

Rowan and others, providential escape 365 

" JudgeJohn 366 

Ruddell's station, surrender of 343 

Russell, Col. William 502 

Saint Joseph's College, at Bardstown 474 

Saline creek, fierce battle of 213 

Salmon, Rev. M. 141 

Salt, first made 217 

" statistics of, &c. 154,401,499 

" river, boat attacked upon 217 

Saltpetre made 501 

Sandusky, James 545 

" Jacob 545 

Scenery on Kentucky and Dick's rivers 451 

School notice 275 

Scott county, Indian incursions into 510 

" " State first settled in 510 

" Gen. Charles 516 

Secretaries of State, list of 144 

Senate, electors of. for 1792 148 

Senators in Congress, list of 144 

" U.S., of other States, from Kentucky 150 

Shakers 451 

Shanks, widow, adventure 195 

Sharp, Col. Solomon P. 311 

Shelby, Gov. Isaac 523 

" College 517 

Shelbyville laid out 517 

Silver ore, in McCracken county 446 

Simpson, Capt. John 531 

Sinking creek 213 

Sinks, remarkable, in the earth 345 

Slate or shell formation 156 

Slaughter, Gov. Gabriel 463 

Slavery questions, causes two schisms Ill 

Smith, 'Col. James 200 

" Col. John Speed 424 

Snelling. Rev. Benjamin 127 

Pa e e. 
Society, for promoting useful knowledge 274 

Spanish intrigues 528 

Spencer, Capt. Spear 534 

Spring burning, in Floyd county 302 

'' warm, in Grayson 327 

tar, in Hancock 334 

' " in Union 540 

Springs, mineral 160 

" see each county, 174, 181, 193, 216, 246, 
251, 296, 302. 326, 327, 334, 345, 349, 382, 
401, 410, 447, 449,472, 480, 489, 495, 501. 
504, 505. 540, 553. 

Stegall family, murdered 353 

Statistics, miscellaneous 144 

State House 304 

Steam, first applied successfully to boats- 273 

Steamboats in the west 356 

Stephenson's house, attack on 422 

Stockton, Robert 297 

" George 297 

Stone, Rev. Barton W. 118 

Stoner, battle on 195 

Strode's station, attack on 234 

Stewart, Rev. Robert 136 

Sturgus' station, Indians pursued from* 227 

Sudduth, Col. William 235 

Talbot, Hon. John 312 

Tar springs 334, 540 

Taylor, Rev. John 113 

" Hubbard 235 

" Gen. James 227 

" Mrs. 227 

" Col. Richard 366.368 

" Commodore 366 

" Maj. Gen. Zachary 368 

Tecumseh, engaged with whites from Mason 

county 440, 441 

Templin, Rev. Terah 133 

Texas, annexation of- 290 

Thames, victory of the 378 

Thayer, Rev. Mr. 141 

Tick creek, fort on, attacked 173 

Todd, Le vi 274 

" Chief Justice Thomas 314 

u Col. John 480.535 

" Col. Charles S. 521 

Towns, Indian 194, 398, 452 

" Trappists " 142 

Transylvania Seminary 272. 274 

University 265 

Tree, anciem marks on 167, 176. 541 

Trigg. Col. Stephen 537 

Trimble, Judge Robert 538 

Tucker, Rev. Samuel 126 

" Rev. John and wife, murdered 231 

Tunnel, natural 475 

Turtle, Little, the. Indian chief 165. 489 

Tye, John, singular escape of 550 

Underwood, Judge Joseph R, 542 

Union, progress of the, in greatness- - - - - - 290 

University, Transylvania 265 

" of Louisville 356 

Vancouver's, Charles, settlement 399 

Vannade, Martin, escape of 487 

Vincennes, surrenders twice 240, 241 

Ward, Capt. James, adventures of 434. 441 

" Capt. Charles, adventure of 438 

Warren, Gen. Joseph 544 

Washington, Gen. George 548 

surveys in Kentucky 399 

town of. settled 390. 429 

" expedition from 390 

" fort, detachment from, toma- 
hawked 513 

Water works at Frankfort 305 

Wayne, Gen. Anthony 549 

Wedding ceremonies 162 

Welby, Mrs. Amelia B. 358 

Welch. Rev. James 136 

Wells, Capt. Samuel 519 

Whelan. Rev. Mr. 140 

Whipped to death by Indians- 217 

Whitley, William 551 

Whittaker, Capt.. rencounter with Indians- 3C>0 

Wicklifle, sen.. Robert 277 

" Hon. Charles A. 476 




Williams, Zadock, killed by Indians 298 

Williams, E. E., adventures of 343, 382 

Wilson, Rev. Robert 136 

" Lieut. Singleton-^ 490 

Windows, glass first used in 363 

Winter of 1779-80, remarkable severity of- 456 

Wisconsin, battle of- 370 

Wood-choppers, attack on 450 

Woodford, Gen. William 556 

" county, Indian excursions into- -554 

Woods, Mrs., adventure with Indians 408 

Yates, escape of 178 



1750 Dr. Walker, of Virginia, visits the north- 
eastern portion of Kentucky. Another ac- 
count says, that it was in 1758; and a third, 
places it in 1747, and says, he visited the 
eastern and south-eastern parts. 

1751 Christopher Gist sent out, by the Ohio Com- 
pany, to explore the Western Company, de- 
scends the Ohio river to the Falls. 

1765, June 8 Col. George Croghan, a British offi- 
cer, in descending the Ohio from Fort Pitt, is 
taken prisoner by the Indians, below the 

1766 Col. James Smith visits Kentucky. 

1767 John Finley visits Kentucky on a trading 

1769 Finley again in Kentucky, accompanied by 
Daniel Boone. and others. This party built 
a wigwam, to shelter them from the storms, 
and remained two years, traversing the north- 
ern and middle regions. 

December 22 Boone and Stuart taken pri- 
soners by the Indians. 

1770 The '-Long Hunters," from Holston, on 

Clinch river, led by Col. James Knox, explore 

the middle and southern regions of the State. 

Gen. Washington descends the Ohio, as 

far as the north-eastern part of Kentucky. 

1773, Sept. 25 Boone, and others, start to settle 
Kentucky. Oct. 10 Are attacked by Indians, 
and turn back. 

May 29 Capt. Thomas Bullitt, and the 
M'Afees, descend the Ohio river. Bullitt and 
others proceed to the Falls, and survey land 
below the Falls to Salt river, and up the 
same to Bullitt's lick. 

July 16 The M'Afees, and others of the 
company, separated from Bullitt at the mouth 
of the Kentucky river; which they ascended 
as far as where Frankfort now stands, and 
surveyed six hundred acres there. 

Gen. Thompson, of Pennsylvania, makes 
some surveys upon the north fork of Licking 

1774 James Harrod, late in the spring, ascended 
the Kentucky river, and built the first cabin 
in the State, on the spot where Harrodsburg 
now stands. 

1775, March 17 Col. Richard Henderson, Natha- 
niel Hart, and others, conclude the Wataga 
treaty with the Cherokees, by which, for 
10.000 sterling, they acquired the territory 
between the Ohio, the Kentucky, or Louisa 
river, the Cumberland mountains, and the 
Cumberland river. Virginia refused to recog- 
nize the purchase, but compromised it by 
grants of land. 

Lord Dunmore issues a proclamation against 
the Transylvania Company of purchasers. 
April 1 Fort at Boonsborough begun, and 

finished June 14th. Settlements made, and 
stations built, also, at Harrodsburg, at the 
Boiling Spring, and at St. Asaph's, in Lincoln 

May 23 Pursuant to a call by Henderson, 
representatives, chosen by the people of 
Transylvania, met at Boonsborough, agreed 
upon a proprietary government, and passed 
nine laws. They adjourned to meet again in 
September, but never met. 

September Boone. and others, bring their 
wives and children to Kentucky. 

George Rogers Clark visits Kentucky, but 
returns before winter. 

Simon Kenton builds a cabin, and plants 
corn, near where Washington stands, in Ma- 
son county. 
1776 Clark moves to Kentucky early, this year. 

June 6 At a general meeting at Harrods- 
burg, Clark and Gabriel Jones were chosen 
members of the Virginia Assembly, and re- 
quired to present the petition, drawn up, 
asking admission as citizens, and efficient 

August 23 Clark procures five hundred 
pounds of powder from the Council of Vir- 
ginia, which he takes from Pittsburgh, down 
the Ohio, to Limestone. 

December 6 Kentucky county established 
out of Fincastle county, by Virginia. 

December 25 Col. John Todd, and his 
party, while on their way to Limestone, for 
the powder secreted there, defeated near the 
Blue Licks, and Gabriel Jones killed. Clark 
takes the powder, in safety, to Harrodsburg. 

December 29 M'Clellan's Fort, on Elk- 
horn, attacked by Indians. 

1777, March 7 Harrodsburg attacked by the 

April 15 First attack on Boonsborough. 

Burgesses chosen to represent the county 
of Kentucky in the legislature of Virginia. 

May Logan's station attacked. 

Major Clark's spies in the Illinois country. 

September First court at Harrodsburg. 

October 1 Clark starts to Virginia. 

December 10 Clark opens his plan, for 
conquering Illinois, to Gov. Patrick Henry. 

1778, January 2 Col. Clark appointed to lead an 
expedition against the British posts in Illinois. 

February 7 Boone taken prisoner at the 
Blue Licks. 

May 25 Disastrous attack, by Indians, on 
a boat ascending Salt river. 

June 24 Col. Clark established a fort on 
Corn Island, before leaving the Falls of the 
Ohio, for Illinois. 

July 4 Clark took Kaskaskia, and, two 
days after, Cahokia. 



August 1 Vincennes voluntarily submitted 
to the Americans. 

August 8 Boonsborough besieged. 

October Louisville settled. 

Virginia grants Henderson and Company 
200,000 acres on the Ohio, below Green 

December Governor Hamilton took Vin 

1779. Feb. 24 Vincennes surrendered to Colonel 

April 1 Blockhouse built at Lexington. 

July Col. Bowman's expedition agains 

October Col. Rogers and Captain Benham 
defeated by Indians, near the mouth of Lick- 

Virginia land commissioners open their 
session at St. Asaph's. 

1780, January The " hard winter ;" game frozen 
in the forest, and cattle around the stations. 
Corn sold at $50 to SI 75. 

May Virginia grants land in Kentucky for 
educational purposes. 

June 22 Col. Byrd, of the British army, 
with six field-pieces, and six hundred Cana- 
dians and Indians, compels the surrender 
of Ruddell's station; and, immediately after, 
of Martin's station. 

July- Gen. Clark, at the head of 1000 men, 
destroyed the Piqua towns on the Miami. 

November 1 The county of Kentucky di- 
vided into the three counties of Lincoln, Fay- 
ette, and Jefferson. 

1781 County lieutenants and surveyors 

1782, March 22 Desperate battle near the Little 
Mountain, known as Estill's defeat. 

August 14 Bryant's station besieged by 
five hundred Indians, under Simon Girty. 

August 19 The disastrous battle of Blue 
Lick, in which one hundred and sixty, or one 
hundred and eighty-two white men were 
defeated by the Indians, with the loss of sixty 
killed and seven taken prisoners. 

September Another expedition of Gen. 
Clark against the Miami towns. No large 
body of Indians thenceforward invaded Ken- 

1783, March Kentucky formed into one district, 
and a District Court established. 

Danville founded. 

A store opened, at Louisville, by Daniel 

1784, Feb. Gen. James Wilkinson came to Lex- 
ington, as the leader of a large commercial 
company, formed in Philadelphia. 

An informal meeting of the people, held at 
Danville, on the state of the district. 

Dec. 27 First Convention held at Dan- 
ville; separation from Virginia discussed, but 
referred to a second convention. 

Blockhouse erected at Limestone, or Mays- 

1785, May 23 Second convention adopted an 
address to the Assembly of Virginia, and one 
to the people of Kentucky, together with 
strong resolutions in favor of separation. 

Aug. 8 Third convention assembled, and 
adopted two new addresses, conceived in 
bolder terms than before. 

1786, January First act of Virginia favoring a 
separation by Kentucky, on certain condi- 

September Fourth convention met, but 
without a quorum, and continued its meetings 
by adjournment, until January, 1787; when 
a quorum attended, expressed their feelings 
in favor of separation, and called another 
convention, to be held in the fall. 

October Expedition of Gen. Clark against 
the Wabash Indians ; returns without effect- 
ing anything. 

Second actof Virginia, postponing the sepa- 
ration of Kentucky until Jan. 1st, 1789. 

Col. Logan's expedition against the Shawa- 

Gen. Clark's seizure of Vincennes, and 
other movements against the Spaniards. 

1787, May Meeting at Danville, in relation to the 
navigation of the Mississippi. 

June Gen. Wilkinson descends, with the 
first cargo from Kentucky, to New Orleans, 
and obtained a permit to import tobacco for 
the Spanish king's stores. 

August 18 The Kentucky Gazette estab- 
lished at Lexington. 

Sept. 17 Fifth convention unanimously 
decided in favor of separation, on the terms 
offered by Virginia. 

1788, June 28 Convention of Virginia decided, 
by a vote of eighty-eight to seventy-eight, in 
favor of adopting the Constitution of the 
United States ; the Kentucky delegation 
voting eleven against it, and three in its favor. 

July 3 Congress refers the subject of the 
admission of Kentucky into the Union to the 
new government. 

July 28 Sixth convention meets, and ad- 
journs without other action than calling an- 
other convention, with full discretionary 

Spanish intrigues, in Kentucky, during this 

Nov. 4 Seventh convention meets. 

Dr. Connolly in Kentucky, as a British 

Dec. 24 The founders of Cincinnati leave 

Dec. 27 Third act of Virginia in favor of 

1789, Jan. No votes given, for electors of Presi- 
dent and Vice-president of the United States, 
in the District of Kentucky. 

Feb. 12 Correspondence between Gen. 
George Washington and Col.Thos. Marshall, 
respecting British and Spanish intrigues in 

July 20 Eighth convention assembled, and 
remonstrated against the conditions of sepa- 
ration contained in the third act of Virginis 

Dec. 18 Fourth act of separation passed 
by Virginia, complying with the wishes of 

1790, July 26 Ninth convention assembled, ac- 
cepted the terms of Virginia, and fixed June 
1st, 1792, for the independence of the State of 

Oct. Colonel Trotter leads the Kentuckians, 
at Hannar's defeat. 

Dec. Kentuckians petition Congress to 
fight Indians in their own way. 

Local Board of War appointed in Kentucky 

1791, Feb. 4 Congress agree to admit Kentucky 
on the 1st of June. 1792. 

May 23 Gen. Scoit's expedition against 
the Indians on the Wabash. 

Augustl Gen. Wilkinson marched against 
the Eel river Indians. 

1792, April 3 Convention met to draft the first 
Constitution of Kentucky. 

May Colonel John Hardin, and Major 
Trueman, killed by the Indians, while on a 
peace mission to them. 

Nov. 6 Major John Adair attacked, near 
Fort St. Clair, by Little Turtle. 

Frankfort chosen as the capital of the 

1793, Oct. 24 Gen. Scott joins Gen. Wayne, near 
Fort Jefferson, with 1000 mounted volunteers 
from Kentucky. 

Nov. 1 Genet, the French minister, sent 
agents to Kentucky, to organize an expedition 
against New Orleans, and the then Spanish 

Democratic societies established in Ken- 

1794, July 26 Gen. Scott again joins Wayne, 
with 1600 men. from Kentucky. 

August 20 Gen. Wayne defeated the Ca- 
nadians and Indians, at the battle of the 
Fallen Timber, with very gratifying effect. 

1795, July Thomas Power sent, by Gov. Caron- 
delet, of Louisiana, to concert with the people 



of Kentucky, a commercial treaty for th 
navigation of the Mississippi ; inconsequence 
of which, Judge Sebastian met Col. Gayoso 
at New Madrid The agreement was, how 
ever, defeated by the Spanish treaty. 

1796, August First paper-mill in the west. 

1797, July 12 Thomas Power sent, by Gov. Ca- 
rondelet, to concert a separation of Kentucky 
from the Union. 

Oct. Occupying claimant law passed. 

1798, Nov. 16 Nullifying resolutions passed, with 
regard to the Alien and Sedition laws. 

Death, except for murder, abolished in 

1799, July 22 Convention assembled for forming 
a new constitution. 

Internal improvements talked of. 
Nov. 14 The nullifying resolutions of last 
year affirmed. 

1800, June 1 The present Constitution goes into 

1801 Circuit Court system established. 
1802, January An Insurance Company, with 
banking powers, chartered. 

The right of deposit, for American pro- 
duce, at New Orleans, suspended. 
1805 Aaron Burr twice visits Kentucky. 
1806, Nov. 11 Burr brought before the District 
Court of Kentucky, but for want of testimony, 
the grand jury was dismissed. 

Dec. 2 Burr is indicted, but the grand 
jury return, "not a true bill." 

Dec. 6 Judge Sebastian convicted of being 
a pensioner of Spain; resigns his office. 
1807 Bank of Kentucky chartered. 
1809 The limitation in actions in ejectment, pro- 
longed from seven to twenty years. 
1811, Nov. 7 Battle of Tippecanoe, in which Col. 
Jo. Hamilton Daveiss, and other distinguished 
Kentuckians, fell. 

1812 Gen. Harrison appointed major-general of 
the Kentucky troops. 

Oct. Gen. Hopkins' expedition against the 
Indians on the Wabash. 
Dec. Battle of Mississiniway. 

1813. Jan. 10 The Kentuckians, under General 
Winchester, reach the Maumee. 

Jan. 18 British defeated at Freachtown. 

Jan. 22 Disastrous battle of the river Rai- 
sin, and massacre of the Americans. 

May 5 Gen. Clay reaches Fort Meigs; 
eight hundred Kentuckians, under General 
Dudley, killed or taken prisoners. 

July 31 Fort Stephenson besieged. 

Oct. 5 Victory of the Thames. 

Nov. 25 The capitol, at Frankfort, con- 
sumed by fire. 

1815, Jan 8 Victory at New Orleans. 

April 6 The Ohio river higher than it had 
been since 1793. 
Oct. 15 A steamboat built at Louisville. 

1816, Oct. 14 Gov. Madison died, soon after his 

1817, July Much excitement in reference to the 
succession of the Lieut. Governor, in case of 
the death of the governor. 

Dec. 12 Shock of an earthquake felt 
throughout the State. 
1817-18 -Forty independent banks chartered. 

1818, Feb. Gen. George Rogers Clark died, near 

Oct. 19 A treaty with the Chickasaw In- 
dians, for all their claims in Tennessee and 
Kentucky, containing about 7,000.000 acres, 
for an annuity of $20,000 for fifteen years. 

1819-20 Right of replevin extended from three 
to twelve months. 
The relief excitement commenced. 

1820-21 Commonwealth's bank chartered. 

The Legislature controlled the directors 
of the old Bank of Kentucky. 

1823 The Court of Appeals decided the reple- 
vin laws unconstitutional. 

1824-25 New Court of appeals organized. 

1833-34 Bank of Kentucky, Northern Bank of 
Kentucky, and Bank of Louisville chartered. 

1835, February Internal improvement system 

1837 Banks suspend specie payments. 

1839 Second suspension of specie payments. 

1842 Relief excitement. 



KENTUCKY was first explored by the Anglo-Saxon race, about 
the middle of the eighteenth century. It then formed a vast 
hunting-ground, upon which the savage tribes of the south and 
of the north killed the elk and buffalo, and occasionally encoun- 
tered each other in bloody conflict. No permanent settlements 
existed within its borders. Its dark forests and cane thickets 
separated the Cherokees, Creeks, and Catawbas of the south, 
from the hostile tribes of Shawanees, Delawares, and Wyandots 
of the north. Each, and all of these tribes, encountered the 
Anglo-American pioneer, and fiercely disputed the settlement of 
the country. 

It is certain, however, that these were not the original occu- 
pants of the country lying between the Alleghany mountains and 
the Mississippi river. Geological monuments of deep interest, 
but as yet imperfectly investigated, speak in language not to be 
mistaken, of a race of men who preceded the rude tribes encoun- 
tered by Boone and Finley. Their origin, language, and history, 
are buried in darkness which, perhaps, may never be dispelled ; 
but the scanty vestiges which they have left behind them, enable 
us to affirm, with confidence, that they far surpassed the rude 
tribes which succeeded them, in arts, in civilization, and in know- 
ledge. They had certainly worked the copper mines of the west, 
and were in possession of copper tools for working in wood and 
stone. Their pipes, and household utensils elaborately fashioned, 
of clay, are far above the rude and clumsy contrivances of their 
successors ; while their large fortifications, constructed of solid 
masonry, and artificially contrived for defence and convenience, 
show that they had foes to resist, and that they had made con- 
siderable progress in the military art. 

How long they occupied the country, whence they came, 
whither they have gone, or whether they perished within the 
crumbling walls which alone speak of their existence, the present 
state of our knowledge does not enable us to decide. The his- 
torical facts with certainty to be inferred from the data which exist, 
2 (17) 


are few and meagre. In relation to time, we can only affirm 
that the fortifications and cemeteries, which have been examined, 
are certainly more than eight hundred years old, but how much 
older they may be can only be conjectured. Time, and future 
investigation, may throw some additional light upon the history 
of this ancient race ; but at present we can only say that they 
lived, that they struggled against enemies, that they made pro- 
gress in arts and civilization, and that the places which once 
knew them, now know them no more. 

Neglecting the obscure visit of Dr. Walker to the north-east- 
ern portion of Kentucky in 1758, and the equally obscure, but 
more thorough examination of the country by Finley in 1767, 
we may regard the company headed by Daniel Boone in 1769, and 
by Knox in 1770, as the earliest visits to Kentucky worthy of 
particular attention. Boone's party remained two years in the 
State, and traversed its northern and middle regions with great 
attention. The party led by Colonel James Knox, called the 
Long Hunters, came one year later, and remained about the 
same time. Both parties were in the country together, but never 
met. Boone was a native of Pennsylvania, but had emigrated to 
North Carolina. Knox's party was from Holston, on Clinch river, 
and thoroughly explored the middle and southern regions of 
Kentucky. Boone's party was harassed by the Indians, and one 
of their number, James Stuart, was killed. Boone himself at one 
time fell into their hands, but escaped. In 1771, they returned 
from their long hunting excursion, and spread throughout the 
western settlements of Virginia and North Carolina the most 
glowing accounts of the inexhaustible fertility of the soil. 

The bounty in lands, which had been given to the Virginia 
troops who had served throughout the old French war, were to 
be located upon the western waters, and within less than two 
years after the return of Boone and Knox, surveyors were sent 
out to locate these lands upon the Ohio river. In 1773, Captain 
Thomas Bullitt, who had distinguished himself in the expedition 
against fort Du Quesne, led a party of surveyors down the Ohio 
to the Falls, where a camp was constructed and roughly fortified 
to protect them from the Indians. During this expedition many 
surveys were executed in Kentucky, and large portions of the 
country explored with a view to future settlement. Three bro- 
thers from Virginia, James, George and Robert M'Afee, accompa- 
nied Bullitt to the mouth of Kentucky river. There they left 
him, and in company with several others ascended the Kentucky 
to the forks, exploring the country and making surveys in various 

In the summer of 1774, other parties of surveyors and hunters 
followed; and during this year James Harrod erected a log cabin 
upon the spot where Harrodsburg now stands, which rapidly 
grew into a station, probably the oldest in Kentucky. During 
this year, Colonel Richard Henderson purchased from the Chero- 
kee Indians the whole country south of Kentucky river. His 


purchase was subsequently declared null and void by the legisla- 
ture of Virginia, which claimed the sole right to purchase land 
from the Indians within the bounds of the royal charter ; but 
great activity was displayed by Henderson in taking possession 
of his new empire, and granting land to settlers, before the act 
of the Virginia legislature overturned all his schemes. Daniel 
Boone was employed by him to survey the country, and select 
favorable positions ; and, early in the spring of 1775, the foun- 
dation of Boonsborough was laid, under the title of Henderson. 
From the 22d of March to the 14th of April, Boone was actively 
engaged in constructing the fort, afterwards called Boonsborough, 
during which time his party was exposed to four fierce attacks 
from the Indians. By the middle of April the fort was comple- 
ted, and within two months from that time his wife and daughters 
joined him, and resided in the fort, the first white women who 
ever stood upon the banks of the Kentucky river. From this 
time, Boonsborough and Harrodsburg became the nucleus and 
support of emigration and settlement in Kentucky. In 1775, the 
renowned pioneer, Simon Kenton, erected a log cabin, and raised 
a crop of corn in the county of Mason, upon the spot where the 
town of Washington now stands, and continued to occupy the 
spot until the fall of that year, when he removed to Boonsbo- 
rough. The limits allotted to this Historical sketch will not 
admit of details of individual adventures ; these may be found 
under their appropriate heads in other portions of the work. 

In the month of September of this year, and three months after 
the arrival of Mrs. Boone and her daughters, the infant colony 
was enriched by the arrival of three more ladies, Mrs. Denton, 
Mrs. M'Gary, and Mrs. Hogan, who, with their husbands and 
children, settled at Harrodsburg. Early in the spring of 1776, 
Colonel Richard Galloway brought his wife and two daughters to 
Boonsborough, and in March of the same year, Colonel Benjamin 
Logan brought his wife and family to Logan's fort, about one 
mile west of the present town of Stanford, in Lincoln county, 
where he, with a few slaves, had raised a crop of corn in 1775. 

During this summer, an incident occurred which powerfully 
impressed upon the minds of the women of Kentucky the dangers 
which beset them in their frontier home : while a daughter of 
Daniel Boone and two of the Miss Galloways were amusing 
themselves within a short distance of the fort, a party of Indians 
suddenly rushed upon them, and bore them off as captives. They 
were rapidly pursued by Colonel Floyd and Daniel Boone, with a 
party of eight men, and at the distance of forty miles from the fort, 
were overtaken, dispersed, and the girls recovered. During this 
summer, Colonel George Rogers Clark for the first time made his 
appearance in Kentucky. He visited the different stations, but 
made no location; he spent much of his time in the woods, 
alone and hunting, and encouraged the young pioneers much by 
his presence and example. 

In the winter of this year, Kentucky was formed into a county 


by the legislature of Virginia, and thus became entitled to a 
separate county court, to justices of the peace, a sheriff, consta- 
bles, coroner, and militia officers. Law, with its imposing para- 
pharnalia, (upon a small scale,) for the first time reared its head 
in the forests of Kentucky. In the spring of 1777, the court of 
quarter sessions held its first sitting at Harrodsburgh, attended 
by the sheriff of the county and its clerk, Levi Todd. The first 
court of Kentucky was composed of John Todd, John Floyd, 
Benjamin Logan, John Bowman, and Richard Galloway. 

They had scarcely adjourned when the infant republic was 
rocked to its centre by an Indian invasion. Harrodsburg, 
Boonsborough, Logan's fort were all in succession furiously as- 
sailed. The hunters and surveyors were driven in from the 
woods, and compelled to take refuge within the forts. Much in- 
jury was done ; but the forts withstood their utmost efforts, and 
after sweeping through Kentucky like a torrent for several weeks, 
the angry tide slowly rolled back to the north, leaving the agi- 
tated settlers to repair their loss as they best could. They were 
reinforced during the summer by forty-five men from North Caro- 
lina, and, in September, by one hundred more under Colonel Bow- 
man, from Virginia. During this summer, Colonel Benjamin 
Logan distinguished himself by a display of the most noble and 
elevated qualities of the human heart. Details will be found in 
another part of this work ; our limits forbid them here. 

The year 1778 was rendered memorable in Kentucky by two 
great military events, in which she was deeply interested. The 
one, was the invasion of the country by an army of Indians and 
Canadians, under the command of Captain DuQuesne, a Canadian 
officer ; the other, was the brilliant expedition of Colonel George 
Rogers Clark against the English posts of Vincennes and Kas- 
kaskias. We will give a brief summary of each in their order. 

In the month of February, Boone, at the head of thirty men, 
was at the lower Blue Licks, engaged in making salt, when he 
was surprised by two hundred Indians, on their march to attack 
Boonsborough, and himself and party taken prisoners. They 
surrendered upon terms of capitulation, which were faithfully ob- 
served by the Indians, and were all carried to Detroit. Here 
his companions were delivered up to the English commandant, 
but Boone was reserved by the Indians and taken to Chillicothe. 
His captors treated him with great kindness, and permitted him 
to hunt, with but little restraint upon his motions. While at 
Chillicothe, he saw three hundred and fifty Indians assembled, 
armed and painted, for a hostile expedition against Boonsbo- 
rough, which had only been suspended, not relinquished, by his 
capture in the spring. He immediately effected his escape, and 
lost no time in returning to Boonsborough, where he gave the 
alarm throughout all Kentucky. Instant preparations were made 
to receive the enemy ; the distant settlements were abandoned, 
the forts were put upon the war establishment, and all anxiously 
expected the approach of the enemy. The escape of Boone, 


however, had disconcerted the enterprise, and it was delayed for 
several weeks. 

Impatient of the slow advance of the enemy, Boone, at the 
head of thirty men, of whom Simon Kenton was one, projected 
an expedition against one of the Indian towns on Paint Creek; 
and while in the enemy's country, he obtained certain informa- 
tion that the Indian army had passed him, and was already on its 
march to Boonsborough. Countermarching with great rapidity, 
he halted not, day or night, until he reached Boonsborough with 
his men ; and scarcely had he done so, when Captain Du Quesne 
made his appearance at the head of five hundred Indians and 
Canadians. This was such an army as Kentucky had never yet 
.beheld, and it produced an immense sensation. The garrison of 
Boonsborough consisted of fifty men ; Harrodsburg and Logan's 
fort were strongly menaced by detachments, and could afford 
them no assistance. The attack commenced; and every artifice 
was resorted to in order to deceive, to intimidate, or subdue the 
garrison, but all proved ineffectual. The attack continued during 
nine days, and was resisted with steady fortitude. On the tenth 
day the enemy decamped, having lost thirty men killed and a 
much greater number wounded. The garrison sustained a loss 
of two killed and four wounded ; the loss of the country, however, 
in stock and improvements, was great. 

The expedition of Colonel George Rogers Clark belongs more 
properly to the history of the United States than to that of Ken- 
tucky; it will be referred to, therefore, with great brevity. 
When Clark was in Kentucky, in the summer of 1776, he took 
a more comprehensive survey of the western country than the 
rude pioneers around him ; his keen military eye was cast upon 
the northwestern posts, garrisoned by British troops, and affording 
inexhaustible supplies of arms and ammunition to the small 
predatory bands of Indians which infested Kentucky. He saw 
plainly that they were the true fountains from which the thou- 
sand little annual rills of Indian rapine and murder took their 
rise, and he formed the bold project of striking at the root of the 

The revolutionary war was then raging, and the western posts 
were too remote from the great current of events to attract, 
powerfully, the attention of either friend or foe ; but to Kentucky 
they were objects of capital interest. He unfolded his plan to 
the executive of Virginia, awakened him to a true sense of its 
importance, and had the address to obtain from the impoverished 
legislature a few scanty supplies of men and munitions for his 
favorite project. Undismayed by the scantiness of his means, he 
embarked in the expedition with all the ardor of his character. 
A few State troops were furnished by Virginia, a few scouts and 
guides by Kentucky, and, with a secrecy and celerity of move- 
ment never surpassed by Napoleon in his palmiest days, he 
embarked in his daring project. 

Having descended the Ohio in boats to the Falls, he there 


landed thirteen families who had accompanied him from Pitts- 
burgh, as emigrants to Kentucky, and by whom the foundation 
of Louisville was laid. Continuing his course down the Ohio, 
he disembarked his troops about sixty miles above the mouth of 
that river, and, marching on foot through a pathless wilderness, 
he came upon Kaskaskias as suddenly and unexpectedly as if he 
had descended from the skies. The British officer in command, 
Colonel Rochdublare, and his garrison, surrendered to a force 
which they could have repelled with ease, if warned of their 
approach ; but never, in the annals of war, was surprise more 
complete. Having secured and sent off his prisoners to Vir- 
ginia, Clark was employed for some time in conciliating the 
inhabitants, who, being French, readily submitted to the new 
order of things. In the meantime, a storm threatened him from 
Vincennes. Governor Hamilton, who commanded the British 
force in the northwest, had actively employed himself during the 
fall season in organizing a large army of savages, with whom, 
in conjunction with his British force, he determined not only to 
crush Clark and his handful of adventurers, but to desolate 
Kentucky, and even seize fort Pitt. The season, however, be- 
came so far advanced before he had completed his preparations, 
that he determined to defer the project until spring, and in the 
meantime, to keep his Indians employed, he launched them 
against the frontiers of Pennsylvania and Virginia, intending to 
concentrate them early in the spring, and carry out his grand 

Clark in the meantime lay at Kaskaskias, revolving the diffi- 
culties of his situation, and employing his spies diligently in 
learning intelligence of his enemy. No sooner was he informed 
of the dispersion of Hamilton's Indian force, and that he lay at 
Vincennes with his regulars alone, than he determined to strike 
Vincennes as he had struck Kaskaskias. The march was long, 
the season inclement, the road passed through an untrodden 
wilderness, and through overflowed bottoms ; his stock of provi- 
sions was scanty, and was to be carried upon the backs of his 
men. He could only muster one hundred and thirty men ; but, 
inspiring this handful with his own heroic spirit, he plunged 
boldly into the wilderness which separated Kaskaskias from 
Vincennes, resolved to strike his enemy in the citadel of his 
strength, or perish in the effort. The difficulties of the march 
were great, beyond what even his daring spirit had anticipated. 
For days his route led through the drowned lands of Illinois ; his 
stock of provisions became exhausted, his guides lost their way, 
and the most, intrepid of his followers at times gave way to de- 
spair. At length they emerged from the drowned lands, and 
Vincennes, like Kaskaskias, was completely surprised. The 
governor and garrison became prisoners of war, and, like their 
predecessors at Kaskaskias, were sent on to Virginia. The 
Canadian inhabitants readily submitted, the neighboring tribes 
were overawed, and some of them became allies, and the whole 


of the adjacent country became subject to Virginia, which em- 
ployed a regiment of State troops in maintaining and securing 
their conquest. A portion of this force was afterwards perma- 
nently stationed at Louisville, where a fort was erected, and 
where Clark established his head-quarters. 

The year 1779 was marked, in Kentucky, by three events of 
unequal importance. About the 1st of April a solitary block- 
house, with some adjacent defences, the forlorn hope of advancing 
civilization, was erected by Robert Patterson, upon the spot where 
the city of Lexington now stands ; the singularly unfortunate 
expedition of Colonel Bowman, against the Indian town of Chilli- 
cothe, was undertaken and carried out ; and the celebrated land 
law of Kentucky was passed by the Virginia legislature. 

Bowman's expedition consisted of the flower of Kentucky. 
Colonel Benjamin Logan was second in command, and Harrod, 
Bulger, Bedinger, and many other brave officers, held subordinate 
commands. The march was well conducted, the surprise was 
complete, the plan of attack well concerted, and the division led 
by Logan performed its part well. Yet the whole failed by 
reason of the hesitation, the imbecility, or the panic of the com- 
mander-in-chief. Logan's division, left unsupported by Bowman, 
was compelled to make a disorderly retreat to the main column, 
and the rout quickly became general. All would have been lost 
but for the daring bravery of some of the subordinate officers, 
who charged the enemy on horseback, and covered the retreat ; 
but the failure was as complete as it was unexpected and dis- 

Our limits forbid an analysis of the land law. It was doubtless 
well intended, and the settlement and pre-emption features were 
just and liberal. The radical and incurable defect of the law, 
however, was the neglect of Virginia to provide for the general 
survey of the country at the expense of government, and its sub- 
division into whole, half, and quarter sections, as is now done by 
the United States. Instead of this, each possessor of a warrant 
was allowed to locate the same where he pleased, and was re- 
quired to survey it at his own cost ; but his entry was required 
to be so special and precise that each subsequent locator might 
recognize the land already taken up, and make his entry else- 
where. To make a good entry, therefore, required a precision 
and accuracy of description which such men as Boone and Kenton 
could not be expected to possess ; and all vague entries were 
declared null and void. Unnumbered sorrows, lawsuits, and 
heart-rending vexations, were the consequence of this unhappy 
law. In the unskillful hands of the hunters and pioneers of 
Kentucky, entries, surveys, and patents, were piled upon each 
other, overlapping and crossing in endless perplexity. The full 
fruits were not reaped until the country became more thickly 

In the meantime the immediate consequence of the law was a 
flood of immigration. The hunters of the elk and buffalo were 


now succeeded by the more ravenous hunters of land ; in the 
pursuit, they fearlessly braved the hatchet of the Indian and the 
privations of the forest. The surveyor's chain and compass were 
seen in the woods as frequently as the rifle ; and during the years 
1779-80-81, the great and all-absorbing object in Kentucky was to 
enter, survey, and obtain a patent, for the richest sections of land. 
Indian hostilities were rife during the whole of this period, but 
these only formed episodes in the great drama. 

The year 1780 was distinguished by the vast number of emi- 
grants who crowded to Kentucky for the purpose of locating 
land warrants ; Indian hostility was proportion ably active, and a 
formidable expedition, consisting of Indians and English, under 
Colonel Bird, threatened Kentucky with destruction. For the 
first time, cannon were employed against the stockade forts of 
Kentucky ; and Ruddle's and Martin's stations were completely 
destroyed, and their garrisons taken. The impatience of the In- 
dians then compelled the colonel to retire, without pushing his 
successes further. 

In the fall of this year, Colonel Clark, at the head of his State 
troops stationed at Louisville, reinforced by all the disposable 
force of Kentucky, invaded the Indian country in Ohio, and 
having defeated the Indians in a pitched battle, laid waste their 
villages and destroyed their corn fields, with inexorable severity, 
in retaliation of Bird's expedition in the spring. 

In November of this year, Kentucky was divided into three 
counties, to which the names of Fayette, Lincoln, and Jefferson 
were given. They had now three county courts, holding monthly 
sessions, three courts of common law and chancery jurisdiction, 
sitting quarter-yearly, and a host of magistrates and constables. 
No court, capable of trying for capital offences, existed in the 
country, or nearer than Richmond. The courts of quarter-session 
could take notice only of misdemeanors. 

The year 1781 was distinguished by a very large emigration, 
by prodigious activity in land speculation, and by the frequency 
of Indian inroads, in small parties. Every portion of the country 
was kept continually in alarm, and small Indian ambushes were 
perpetually bursting upon the settlers. Many lives were lost, 
but the settlements made great and daily advances, in defiance 
of all obstacles. The rich lands of Kentucky were the prize of 
the first occupants, and they rushed to seize them with a rapacity 
stronger than the fear of death. 

The year 1782 was uncommonly prolific in great events, 
Indian hostility was unusually early and active. In the month 
of May, a party of twenty-five Wyandots invaded Kentucky, and 
committed shocking depredations in the neighborhood of Estill's 
station. Captain Estill hastily collected a party of equal force, 
and pursued them rapidly. He overtook them upon Hinckstone's 
fork of Licking, near Mount-Sterling, and the best fought battle 
of the war there occurred. The creek ran between the parties, 
forbidding a charge but at perilous disadvantage, and the two 


lines, forming behind trees and logs, within half rifle shot, stood 
front to front for hours, in close and deadly combat. One-third 
on each side had fallen, and the fire was still vivid and deadly, 
as at the opening of the combat. Estill, determined to bring it 
to a close, ordered Lieutenant Miller to turn their flank with six 
men, and attack them in the rear. While Miller was making a 
small detour to the right, for the purpose, most probably, of exe- 
cuting his orders in good faith (for there are various constructions 
placed upon his conduct), the Indian commander became aware 
of the division of his adversary's force, and, with that rapid deci- 
sion which so often flashed across Napoleon's battle-fields, and 
whether exhibited upon a great or a small scale, mark the great 
commander, determined to frustrate the plan, by crossing the 
creek with his whole force and overwhelming Estill, now weak- 
ened by the absence of Miller. This bold thought was executed 
with determined courage, and after a desperate struggle, Estill 
was totally overpowered, and forced from the ground with slaugh- 
ter. Himself, and nearly all his officers, were killed ; and it was 
but a poor consolation that an equal loss had been inflicted on 
the enemy. This brilliant little fight is deeply written in the 
annals of Kentucky, and will long be remembered, for the exqui- 
site specimen of the military art, exhibited in miniature, by the 
Indian commander. It created a sensation, at the time, far be- 
yond its real importance, and was rapidly followed by stunning 
blows, from the same quarter, in rapid succession. 

A party of Wyandots, consisting of twenty men, encountered 
Captain Holder, at the head of seventeen Kentuckians, near the 
upper Blue Licks, and defeated him with loss. 

But these small parties were the mere pattering drops of hail, 
which precede the tempest. In the month of August, an army of 
five hundred Indian warriors, composed of detachments from all 
the north-western tribes, rapidly and silently traversed the north- 
ern part of Kentucky, and appeared before Bryant's station, aa 
unexpectedly as if they had risen from the earth. The garrison, 
although surprised, took prompt measures to repel the enemy. 
By the daring gallantry of the women, the fort was supplied with 
water from a neighboring spring. Two of the garrison burst 
through the enemy's lines, and gave the alarm to the neighboring 
stations, while those who remained, by means of a well-conceived 
and successful ruse, gave a bloody repulse to the only assault 
which the Indians ventured to make upon the fort. A party of 
sixteen horsemen, with great gallantry and good fortune, forced 
their way through the Indians, and entered the fort unhurt. More 
than double that number, on foot, made a similar effort, but failed, 
and sustained considerable loss. 

In the meantime, the garrison remained under cover, and kept 
up a deliberate and fatal fire upon such Indians as showed them- 
selves. The enemy became discouraged, and, apprehensive of 
bringing the whole force of the country upon them, by farther 
delay, broke up their camp, on the second night of the siege, and 


retreated by the buffalo-trace, leading to the lower Blue Lick. 
By the next day, at noon, one hundred and sixty men had assem- 
bled at Bryant's station, burning with eagerness to encounter the 
invaders. Colonels Todd, Trigg, and Daniel Boone ; majors 
Harland, M' Bride, and Levi Todd; captains Bulger and Gordon, 
with forty-five other commissioned officers, including the cele- 
brated M'Gary, assembled in council, and hastily determined to 
pursue the enemy, without waiting for Colonel Logan, who was 
known to be collecting a strong force in Lincoln, and who might 
be expected to join them in twenty-four hours. 

If Major M'Gary is to be believed, he remonstrated against 
this rash precipitation, and urged a delay of one day for rein- 
forcements, but so keen was the ardor of officer and soldier, 
that his dissent was drowned, in an impatient clamor for in- 
stant battle; and in an evil hour, on the 18th of August, the line 
of march was taken up, and the pursuit urged with a keenness 
which quickly brought them up with the retreating foe. Before 
noon, on the 19th, they reached the southern bank of Licking, and 
for the first time beheld their enemy. A few Indians were care- 
lessly loitering upon the rocky ridge, which bounded the prospect 
to the north. These warriors seemed nowise disconcerted by the 
presence of so large a body of Kentuckians, but after gazing 
upon them for a few moments with cool indifference, very leis- 
urely disappeared beyond the ridge. 

This symptom was not to be mistaken by the youngest woods- 
man in the ranks. The enemy was before them in force, and a 
battle against fearful odds, or a rapid retreat, became inevitable. 
A dozen officers rode to the front and exchanged opinions. 
Boone, who was best acquainted with the ground, declared with 
confidence that the Indian army lay in ambuscade about one mile 
beyond the river, which there ran in an irregular ellipsis, and of- 
fered peculiar advantages to the Indians, if the Kentucldans should 
advance by the buffalo trace. He advised either a retreat upon 
Logan, or a division of their force, for the purpose of making a 
flank attack upon each wing of the Indian army, of whose posi- 
tion he had no doubt. All further deliberation, however, was 
broken up by M'Gary, who suddenly spurred his horse into the 
stream, waved his hat over his head, and shouted aloud, " Let all 
who are not cowards follow me." Of the gallant band of one 
hundred and sixty, there was not one who could endure this 
taunt. The electric cord was struck with a rude hand, and the 
shock was as universal as it was violent. The horsemen dashed 
tumultuously into the stream, each striving to be foremost. The 
footmen were mingled with them in one rolling and irregular 
mass. They struggled through a deep ford as they best could, 
and without stopping to reform their ranks on the northern shore, 
pressed forward in great disorder, but in a fierce mood, to close 
with their concealed enemy. The stinging taunt of M'Gary had 
struck deep, and every thought save that of confronting death 
without fear, was for the moment banished from their minds. 


M'Gary still led the van, closely followed by Boone, Harland and 
M'Bride. Suddenly a heavy fire burst upon them in front, and 
the van halted and endeavored to obtain cover and return the 
fire. The centre and rear hurried up to support their friends, 
and the bare and rocky ridge was soon crowded with the com 
batants. The ravines flanked them on each side, from which 
came a devouring fire, which rapidly wasted their ranks. There 
was no cover for the Kentuckians, and nearly one half of their 
force was on horseback. The Indians had turned each flank, and 
appeared disposed to cut off their retreat. The rear fell back 
to prevent this, the centre and van followed the movement, and a 
total rout ensued. The pursuit was keen and bloody, and was 
pressed with unrelenting vigor. Todd, Trigg, Harland, M'Bride, 
Bulger, and Gordon, were killed 'on the field of battle. M'Gary, 
although more deeply involved in the ranks of the enemy than 
any other officer, was totally unhurt ; sixty officers and men were 
killed in the battle or pursuit, and seven prisoners were taken. 
The number of wounded was never ascertained. Some of the 
fugitives reached Bryant's station on the night after the battle, 
and were there met by Colonel Logan, at the head of four hun- 
dred and fifty men. Logan remained at Bryant's until the last of 
the survivors had arrived, and then continued his march to the 
battle ground. The bodies of the dead were collected and in- 
terred, and having satisfied himself that the Indians had crossed 
the Ohio and were beyond his reach, he returned to Bryant's sta- 
tion and disbanded his troops. 

It was an established custom in Kentucky at that time, never 
to suffer an Indian invasion to go unpunished, but to retaliate 
upon their villages and corn fields, the havoc, which their own 
settlements had experienced. Colonel George Rogers Clark, 
stationed permanently at Louisville, declared that he would lead 
his regiment of State troops against the Indian villages in Ohio, 
and invited the militia of Kentucky to accompany him. The 
call was promptly answered. One thousand riflemen rendez- 
voused at the mouth of Licking, and under the command of 
Clark, penetrated into the heart of the Indian country. No re- 
sistance was offered. Their towns were reduced to ashes, their 
corn cut up, and the whole country laid waste with unsparing 
severity. Having completely destroyed every thing within their 
reach, the detachment returned to Kentucky. 



THE certainty that actual hostilities between Great Britain and 
America had ceased, and that a treaty of peace would be for- 
mally ratified in the spring, led to an universal expectation that 
Indian hostilities would cease, and in expectation of that event, 
there was a vast accession of emigrants in the fall of 1782. 
Peace followed in 1783, as was expected, and Indian hostilities 
for a time were suspended; but an unhappy failure on both sides 
fully and fairly to execute the treaty, finally resulted in the re- 
newal of the Indian war with treble violence. 

By the terms of the treaty, England was bound to carry away 
no slaves, and to surrender the north-western posts in her posses- 
sion within the boundaries of the United States. On the other 
hand, Congress had stipulated, that no legal impediments should 
be opposed to the collection by British merchants, of the debts 
due them from citizens of the United States. None of these 
stipulations were faithfully executed, as they were understood by 
the parties severally interested. Slaves taken during the war 
were removed by the British fleet. Virginia became indignant 
and passed a law which prohibited the collection of British debts, 
and England refused to deliver up the western posts, until the 
obnoxious laws were repealed. Congress, in helpless imbecility, 
was unable to control the sovereign States, and the posts were 
withheld until Jay's treaty, more than ten years after peace had 
been ratified. 

The Indians at first, however, assumed a pacific attitude, and 
the year 1783 passed away without hostilities. In the meantime, 
the settlements advanced with great rapidity. Simon Kenton, 
after an interval of nine years, reclaimed his settlement at Wash- 
ington, and in 1784 erected a block house where Maysville 
now stands, so that the Ohio river became the northern frontier 
of Kentucky. The general course of emigration henceforth was 
down the Ohio to Maysville, and thence by land to the interior. 

In the spring of 1783, Kentucky was erected into a district, 
and a court of criminal as well as civil jurisdiction, coextensive 
with the district, was erected. The court held its first session in 
Harrodsburg, in the spring of 1783, and was opened by John 
Floyd and Samuel M'Dowell, as judges, John May being clerk, 
and Walker Daniel prosecuting attorney. Seventeen culprits 
were presented by the grand jury; nine for keeping tippling 
houses, and eight for fornication. From these presentments, we 
may form some opinion of the vices most prevalent in Kentucky 
at that time. During the summer, a log court-house and jail, 
" of hewed or sawed logs nine inches thick," was erected on the 


spot where Danville now stands ; during this summer, a retail 
store of dry goods was opened at Louisville, and the tone of 
society became visibly more elevated. 

In 1784, General James Wilkinson emigrated to the country, 
and settled in Lexington. This gentleman occupied a distin- 
guished position in the early civil conflicts of Kentucky, and 
became the leader of a political party; he had distinguished 
himself in the war of independence, and was aid-de-camp to 
Gates at Saratoga. For distinguished services in that campaign, 
and upon the particular recommendation of Gates, he had been 
promoted by Congress to the rank of brigadier-general. Friends 
and enemies have agreed in ascribing to him the qualities of 
courage, energy, address, and eloquence; of a somewhat mere- 
tricious and inflated character^ A graceful person, amiable 
manners, liberal hospitality, with a ready and popular elocution, 
when added to his military fame, ensured him popularity with 
the mass of the people. He came to Kentucky with the avowed 
object of improving his circumstances, which were somewhat 
embarrassed ; he was understood to be connected with an eastern 
mercantile company, and not to be averse to any speculation 
which might improve his fortune. He soon became deeply 
involved in the fiercest political controversies of the day, and has 
left his countrymen divided in opinion as to whether he acted 
from patriotic and honorable motives, or was a selfish and 
abandoned adventurer, ready to aid any project which promised 
to advance his interests. 

In the summer of 1784, some depredations were committed by 
the Indians upon the southern frontier, and Colonel Benjamin 
Logan had received intelligence that a serious invasion was 
contemplated, and publicly summoned such citizens as could 
conveniently attend, to meet at Danville on a particular day, and 
consult as to what measures should be taken for the common 

The alarm in the end proved unfounded ; but in the meantime 
a great number of the most distinguished citizens assembled at 
Danville, under a belief that Indian hostilities upon a large scale 
were about to be renewed, and would continue until the north- 
western posts were surrendered by the British. Upon an exami- 
nation of the laws then in existence, their most eminent lawyers 
decided that no expedition could lawfully and effectually be 
carried out against the Indian tribes; the power of impressment 
had ceased with the war, and in a state of peace could not legally 
be exercised. Nor was there any power known to the law ca- 
pable of calling forth the resources of the country, however 
imminent the danger ; all of their legislation came from Rich- 
mond, distant many hundred miles, and separated from Kentucky 
by desert mountains and interminable forests traversed by roving 
bands of Indians. 

The necessity of a government independent of Virginia was 
deeply and almost unanimously felt. But how was this to 


be accomplished? It is interesting to trace the origin, progress, 
and consummation of independence in this infant community 
the first established west of the mountains ; and when we reflect 
upon the bloodshed and violence which has usually attended such 
political changes in the old world, we are profoundly struck with 
the good sense, moderation, and patience, under powerful temp- 
tation, which marked the conduct of Kentucky. 

The first step taken marks the simplicity and integrity of the 
movers. The assembly, having no legal authority, published a 
recommendation, that each militia company in the district should 
on a certain day elect one delegate, and that the delegates thus 
chosen should assemble in Danville, on the 27th December, 1784. 
The recommendation was well received, the elections held, and 
the delegates assembled. Samuel M'Dowell was elected presi- 
dent, and Thomas Todd, clerk. A great number of spectators 
were in attendance, who maintained the most commendable 
order, and the convention, as they styled themselves, debated the 
question of separation from the parent State with all the gravity 
and decorum of a deliberative body. 

A division of opinion was manifest, but none, save legal and 
constitutional means, were even hinted at by the warmest advo- 
cate for separation ; order and law reigned without a rival. A very 
great majority were in favor of a petition to the legislature of Vir- 
ginia, and through them to Congress, for the passage of an act, in 
the manner provided by the constitution, by which Kentucky might 
become an independent member of the confederacy. A resolu- 
tion was passed, by a large majority, declaratory of the views 
of the convention. But as no clear determination, upon that 
subject, had been expressed by the people previous to their elec- 
tion, they did not consider themselves authorized to take any 
steps to carry their resolution into effect, further than to recom- 
mend that, in the spring election of delegates, from the several 
counties, to the Virginia legislature, the people should also elect 
twenty-five delegates to a convention, to meet at Danville, in 
May, 1785, and finally determine whether separation was expe- 
dient. They also apportioned the delegates among the several 
counties, with great fairness, according to the supposed popula- 
tion. The people peaceably conformed to the recommendation 
of their delegates, and elected the members as prescribed by the 

In the meantime, the subject was gravely and earnestly dis- 
cussed in the primary assemblies, and, in some parts of the 
country, with passionate fervor. A great majority were in favor 
of constitutional separation none other was then thought of. 
On the 23d of May, 1785, this second convention assembled and 
adopted five resolutions. They decided that constitutional sepa- 
ration from Virginia was expedient, that a petition to the legis- 
lature be prepared, that an address to the people of Kentucky 
be published, and that delegates to another convention be elected 
in July, and assemble at Danville in August following, to whom 


the petition, address, and proceedings of the present convention 
be referred for final action. 

The people, thus involved in a labyrinth of conventions, to 
which no end could be seen, nevertheless quietly conformed, 
elected a new batch of delegates in July, who assembled in Au- 
gust, being the third convention which had already assembled, 
while scarcely any progress had been made in carrying into effect 
the object of their meeting. In the meantime, Indian hostility 
became more frequent, and the exasperation of the people daily 
increased. The petition and address, with the other proceedings 
of the convention of May, were referred to the present, and under- 
went considerable change. The petition was drawn in language 
less simple, the address to the people of Kentucky was more 
exciting, impassioned, and exaggerated. No printing press, as 
yet, existed in the country, but copies of the address and petition 
were zealously multiplied by the pen, and widely dispersed among 
the people. The chief-justice of the District Court, George Muter, 
and the attorney-general, Harry Innis, were deputed to present 
the petition to the legislature of Virginia. This was accordingly 
done, and in January, 1786, the legislature passed an act, with 
great unanimity, in conformity to the wishes of Kentucky, annex- 
ing, however, certain terms and conditions sufficiently just and 
fair, but which necessarily produced some delay. They required 
a fourth convention, to assemble at Danville in September, 1786, 
who should determine whether it were the will of the district to 
become an independent State of the confederacy, upon the con- 
ditions in the act enumerated, and well known under the denomi- 
nation of the Compact with Virginia. And if the convention 
should determine upon separation, they were required to fix upon 
a day posterior to the 1st of September, 1787, on which the au- 
thority of Virginia was to cease and determine forever ; provided, 
however, that previous to the 1st day of June, 1787, the Congress 
of the United States should assent to said act, and receive the 
new State into the Union. 

The great mass of the citizens of Kentucky received this act 
with calm satisfaction, and were disposed peaceably to conform 
to its provisions. But two circumstances, about this time, oc- 
curred, which tended to create unfavorable impressions, in Ken- 
tucky, towards the government of the Union. The one was the 
utter inability of Congress to protect them from the north-western 
tribes, by compelling a surrender of the posts, or otherwise. The 
other was a strong disposition, manifested by the delegates in 
Congress from the seven north-eastern States, to yield, for twenty 
years, the right to navigate the Mississippi to the ocean. The 
one inspired contempt; the other awakened distrust, which might 
rapidly ripen to aversion. Hostilities had ceased with Great 
Britain, but hatred and resentment blazed as fiercely between the 
people of the two nations, as if the war was still raging. The 
retention of the posts kept alive Indian hostility against Ken- 
tucky, while the eastern States enjoyed profound peace. 


Congress had, after long delay, made treaties with the Indians, 
which were totally disregarded by the latter, as far as Kentucky 
was concerned, and the violation of which the former was totally 
unable to chastise. Repeated efforts were made by General 
Henry Lee, of Virginia, to obtain a continental force of seven 
hundred, or even three hundred men, to protect the western fron- 
tier; but the frantic jealousy of the central power cherished by 
the sovereign States, at a time when that central power grovelled 
in the most helpless imbecility, peremptorily forbade even this 
small force to be embodied, lest it might lead to the overthrow 
of State rights. In the meantime, Kentucky was smarting under 
the scourge of Indian warfare ; had no government at home, and 
their government beyond the mountains, however sincerely dis- 
posed, was totally unable to protect them, from a radical and 
incurable vice in its constitution. 

To this cause of dissatisfaction came the astounding intelli- 
gence, in the succeeding year, that several States in Congress 
had voted to barter away the right to navigate the Mississippi, 
in consideration of commercial advantages to be yielded by Spain 
to the eastern States, in which Kentucky could have no direct 
interest. There was neither printing press nor post office in 
Kentucky, and the people were separated by an immense wil- 
derness from their eastern brethren. Intelligence came slowly, 
and at long intervals. In passing through so many hands, it was 
necessarily inaccurate, exaggerated and distorted, according to 
the passions or whims of its retailers. Never was harvest more 
ripe for the sickle of the intriguer ; and it soon became manifest, 
that schemes were in agitation which contemplated a severance 
of Kentucky from Virginia by other than constitutional means, 
and which vaguely, and cautiously, seemed to sound the way for 
a total severance of Kentucky from the Union. 

In the elections which took place in the spring of 1786, for the 
fourth convention, directed by the legislature of Virginia, General 
James Wilkinson became a candidate to represent the county of 
Fayette. With all the address, activity, and eloquence of which 
he was master, he strove to ripen the public mind for an imme- 
diate declaration of independence, without going through the slow 
formalities of law, which the exigencies of the country, in his 
opinion, would not permit them to await. He was the first pub- 
lic man who gave utterance to this bold sentiment ; and great 
sensation was produced in the county of Fayette, by its promul- 
gation. A violent opposition to his views quickly became man- 
ifest, and displayed such strength and fervor, as drew from him 
an explanation and modification, which lulled the force of present 
opposition, but left an indelible jealousy in the breasts of many, 
of the general's ulterior intentions. He was elected to the con- 
vention. There was but little excitement in the other counties, 
who chose the prescribed number of delegates, with the inten- 
tion of patiently awaiting the formalities of law. 

In the meantime, Indian depredations became so harassing, that 


the people determined upon a grand expedition against the In- 
dian towns, notwithstanding the treaties of Congress, and absence 
of legal power. A thousand volunteers under General Clark 
rendezvoused at Louisville, with the determination thoroughly to 
chastise the tribes upon the Wabash. Provisions and ammunition 
were furnished by individual contribution, and were placed on 
board of nine keel boats, which were ordered to proceed to Vin- 
cennes by water, while the volunteers should march to the same 
point by land. 

The flotilla, laden with provisions and munitions of war, en- 
countered obstacles in the navigation of the Wabash, which had 
not been foreseen, and was delayed beyond the time which had 
been calculated. The detachment moving by land reached the 
point of rendezvous first, and awaited for fifteen days the arrival 
of the keel boats. This long interval of inaction gave time for 
the unhealthy humors of the volunteers to ferment, and proved 
fatal to the success of the expedition. The habits of General 
Clark had also become intemperate, and he no longer possessed 
the undivided confidence of his men. A detachment of three 
hundred volunteers broke off from the main body, and took up 
the line of march for their homes. Clark remonstrated, en- 
treated, even shed tears of grief and mortification, but all in vain. 
The result was a total disorganization of the force, and a return 
to Kentucky, to the bitter mortification of the commander-in- 
chief, whose brilliant reputation for the time suffered a total 

This expedition led to other ill consequences. The convention 
which should have assembled in September, was unable to mus- 
ter a quorum, the majority of its members having marched under 
Clark upon the ill-fated expedition. A number of the delegates 
assembled at Danville at the appointed time, and adjourned 
from day to day until January, when a quorum at length was 
present, and an organization effected. In the meantime, how- 
ever, the minority of the convention who had adjourned from 
day to day, had prepared a memorial to the legislature of Vir- 
ginia, informing them of the circumstances which had prevented 
the meeting of the convention, and suggesting an alteration of 
some of the clauses of the act, which gave dissatisfaction to their 
constituents, and recommending an extension of the time within 
which the consent of Congress was required. This produced a 
total revision of the act by the Virginia legislature, whereby an- 
other convention was required to be elected in August of 1787, 
to meet at Danville, in September of the same year, and again 
take into consideration the great question, already decided by 
four successive conventions, and requiring a majority of two- 
thirds to decide in favor of separation, before the same should be 
effected. The time when the laws of Virginia were to cease, 
was fixed on the 1st day of January, 1789, instead of September, 
1787, as was ordered in the first act; and the 4th of July, 1788, 
was fixed upon as the period, before which Congress should 


express its consent to the admission of Kentucky into the 

This new act became known in Kentucky shortly after the 
fourth convention, after a delay of three months, had at length 
rallied a quorum, and had with great unanimity decided upon se- 
paration. They then found themselves deprived of all authority, 
their recent act nullified, their whole work to begin anew, and 
the time of separation adjourned for two years, and clogged with 
new conditions. An ebullition of impatience and anger was the 
unavoidable result. They seemed, by some fatality, to be invol- 
ved in a series of conventions, interminable as a Cretan labyrinth, 
tantalizing them with the prospect of fruit, which invariably 
turned to ashes, when attempted to be grasped. 

While such was the temper of the public mind, the navigation 
of the Mississippi was thrown into the scale. Shortly after the 
convention adjourned, a number of gentlemen in Pittsburgh, 
styling themselves a "committee of correspondence," made a 
written communication to the people of Kentucky, informing 
them, " that John Jay, the American secretary for foreign affairs, 
had made a proposition to Don Gardoqui, the Spanish minister, 
near the United States, to cede the navigation of the Mississippi 
to Spain for twenty years, in consideration of commercial advan- 
tages to be enjoyed by the eastern States alone." 

On the 29th of March, a circular letter was addressed to the 
people of Kentucky, signed by George Muter, Harry Innis, John 
Brown, and Benjamin Sebastian, recommending the election of 
five delegates from each county to meet at Danville in May, and 
take into consideration the late action of Congress upon the sub- 
ject of the Mississippi. The letter contemplated the formation 
of committees of correspondence throughout the west, and a 
"decent, but spirited," remonstrance to Congress against the 
cession, which they evidently supposed in great danger of being 
consummated. There is nothing objectionable in either the 
language or object of this circular, and, considering the impression 
then prevailing in the west as to the intentions of Congress, it 
may be regarded as temperate and manly in its character. The 
most ignorant hunter in the west could not be blind to the vital 
importance of the interest which, (as they supposed,) was about 
to be bartered away for advantages to be reaped by their eastern 
brethren alone; and although the ferment was violent for a time, 
yet regular and constitutional remedies were only proposed by 
the circular or adopted by the citizens. 

The delegates were elected as proposed, but before they assem- 
bled the true state of affairs in Congress was more accurately 
understood, and the convention, after a brief session, and after 
rejecting various propositions, which looked towards increasing 
and prolonging the excitement of the people upon this agitating 
subject, quietly adjourned, without taking any action whatever 
upon the subject. 

This negotiation belongs properly to the history of the United 


States; but it is impossible to understand the early political 
history of Kentucky, without briefly adverting to some of its most 
prominent features. No sooner did it become evident that the 
war, however protracted, must finally end in the establishment 
of American independence, than the friendly courts of France 
and Spain began to exhibit the most restless jealousy as to the 
western limits of the infant republic. Spain was then an im- 
mense land-holder upon the northern part of the continent, 
claiming all east of the Mississippi, lying south of the 31st degree 
of north latitude, and all west of the Mississippi to the Pacific. 
France had large islands in the West Indies. The object of both 
was to make the Alleghany the western limit, if possible ; if not, 
at least to bound them by the Ohio, leaving Kentucky, Ten- 
nessee, and Mississippi, to indemnify his Catholic majesty for the 
expenses of the war. 

These views were early disclosed by the two allied powers, 
and urged with all the skill and power of a long practiced and 
tortuous diplomacy. On the contrary, they were steadily and 
manfully opposed by Jay and the elder Adams, the American 
ministers abroad, who succeeded in securing to their country the 
boundary of the Mississippi, as far south as latitude 31, the full 
extent of the ancient English claim. Baffled upon the subject of 
boundary, Spain still clung to the navigation of the Mississippi, 
and anxiously strove to retain the exclusive right to its naviga- 
tion, and to obtain from the United States a cession of all right 
thereto. This was firmly resisted by Jay during the war, when 
his instructions gave him a large discretion, and when pecuniary 
aid was lavishly proffered by Spain if this right was ceded, and 
no less pertinaciously adhered to by him after the war. 

In 1786, Don Gardoqui,the Spanish ambassador, opened a nego- 
tiation with Jay, the secretary for foreign affairs, at New York. 
Jay's instructions from Congress forbade him to make any con- 
cessions upon the subject of the Mississippi, and under these 
instructions the negotiation began. Jay reported to Congress 
that his opinion of the question remained unaltered, but that by 
relinquishing the right for twenty years they could obtain great 
and important advantages, more than equivalent to the disad- 
vantages of the said cession, which, in his opinion, (so little did 
he anticipate the rapid growth of the west,) would be of little 
importance for twenty years. 

The seven north-eastern States voted to rescind the instructions 
above alluded to, restricting him upon the subject of the Missis- 
sippi. This was violently opposed by Virginia, and the other 
States, and as the votes of nine States were necessary to the 
success of the resolution, and it was obviously impossible to 
obtain so many votes for the measure, the subject was entirely 
relinquished. Virginia, in the meantime, by an unanimous vote 
of her legislature, had instructed her delegates in Congress never 
to accede to any such proposition ; and she was warmly sup- 
ported by the other non-concurring States. As soon as these 


facts were thoroughly understood by the convention, they quietly 
adjourned, without action of any kind. There was left upon the 
public mind, however, a restless jealousy of the intentions of the 
north-eastern States, which could, at any time, be fanned into a 
flame, and of which political aspirants eagerly availed themselves, 
whenever it suited their purposes. The name of Jay became 
peculiarly odious in Kentucky, which odium was not diminished 
by his celebrated treaty, concluded many years afterwards. 

Tn the meantime, the delegates to the fifth convention, in con- 
formity to the last act of Virginia, were quietly elected, and a 
newspaper, entitled the " Kentucky Gazette," printed by John 
Bradford, of Lexington, having been established, the pent up 
passions of the various political partisans found vent in its pages. 
During this summer, General Wilkinson descended the Missis- 
sippi with a cargo of tobacco, for New Orleans, avowedly upon 
a mercantile adventure alone. But those who had been startled 
by the boldness of the general's project, of separation from Vir- 
ginia, coupling this trip with the recent agitation of the question 
of the navigation of the Mississippi, and the unsettled state of 
the public mind in relation to the Spanish pretensions, did not 
scruple to charge him with ulterior projects, other than commer- 
cial in their tendency. The delegates, in the meantime, assem- 
bled in Danville, and again repeated the uniform decision of their 
predecessors, by an unanimous vote. 

A copy of their proceedings was sent to the executive of Vir- 
ginia, and the editor of the Gazette was requested to publish 
them, for the information of the people. An address to Congress 
was adopted, perfectly respectful in its character, praying that 
honorable body to receive them into the Union. The represen- 
tatives from Kentucky to the Virginia legislature, were also 
requested to exert their influence to have a delegate to Congress, 
elected from the district of Kentucky, who should sit with the 
delegation from Virginia. They decided that the power of Vir- 
ginia should cease on the 31st of December, 1788, and made 
provision for the election of still another convention it was 
hoped the last to assemble, in the ensuing year, at Danville, in 
order to form a constitution. The legislature of Virginia cor- 
dially assented to the suggestion of the convention, in relation 
to the appointment of a delegate from Kentucky, to Congress, 
and Mr. John Brown, a representative from Kentucky to the 
Virginia legislature, was elected, by that legislature, a delegate 
to Congress, taking his seat with the other representatives from 
Virginia. This gentleman was one of the most eminent lawyers 
of Kentucky, possessed of talents, influence, and popularity. He 
was charged with the delivery of the petition of the convention 
to Congress, and lost no time in presenting himself before that 

The great convention, which gave birth to the American con- 
stitution, had concluded their labors, in Philadelphia, in September, 
1787, and the public mind was so much excited upon the subject 


of the new constitution, that the old Congress could scarcely be 
kept alive until the new government should be organized. A 
quorum of the members could not be rallied, during the winter, 
and although the act of the Virginia legislature required their 
assent before the 4th of July, 1788, it was not until the 3d of 
July that the question of the admission of Kentucky was taken 
up. The federal constitution had then been adopted by ten 
States, and it was certain that the new government would quickly 
go into operation. The old Congress declined to act upon the 
petition of Kentucky, and referred the question to the new go- 
vernment, whenever the same should be organized. 

Thus was Kentucky again baffled in her most ardent wish, and 
flung back to the point from which she had started, more than 
four years before. Her long array of conventions had in vain 
decided, again and again, that it was expedient to separate from 
Virginia, and become an independent member of the confederacy. 
Mr. Brown communicated the intelligence to his constituents ; 
and his own views upon the subject are clearly contained in two 
letters, the one to Samuel M'Dowell, who had acted as president 
of nearly all the Kentucky conventions, the other to George 
Muter. In these letters he attributes the refusal of Congress, to 
act upon the petition of Kentucky, to the jealousy of the New 
England States, of any accession to the southern strength, in 
Congress, and he inclines to the opinion that the same causes 
will have equal weight with the new government. He gives the 
result of various private interviews between himself and Don 
Gardoqui, the Spanish minister speaks of the promises of that 
minister, of peculiar commercial advantages to Kentucky, con- 
nected with the navigation of the Mississippi, if she will erect her- 
self into an independent government ; but these advantages, he says, can 
never be yielded to her by Spain, so long as she remains a member of 
tfie Union ! He communicates this information in confidence, and 
with the permission of Don Gardoqui, to a few friends, not doubt- 
ing that they will make a prudent use of it. He gives his own 
opinion decidedly in favor of immediate independence, without 
waiting for the result of another application to Congress, under 
the new government. 

It is worthy of observation, that in July 1787, Harry Innis, 
attorney-general of Kentucky, wrote to the executive of Virginia, 
giving it as his opinion that Kentucky would form an independent 
government in two or three years, as Congress did not seem dis- 
posed to protect tliem, and under the present system she could not exert 
her strength. He adds, " I have just dropped this hint to your ex- 
cellency for matter of reflection !" Coupling these passages with 
the early and bold declaration of Wilkinson upon the same sub- 
ject, we cannot for a moment doubt, that the project of unconsti- 
tutional separation from Virginia and the union was seriously 
entertained by some of the statesmen of Kentucky, including 
Wilkinson, Brown, and Innis, as the prominent and leading char- 
acters. Whether this project was horrid and damnable, as char- 


acterized by Marshall, or innocent and patriotic, as esteemed by 
Mr. Butler, may be left to nice casuists in political morality to 
decide. But that the scheme was seriously entertained cannot 
fairly be denied, and truth and fidelity require that the historian 
should not attempt to conceal it. 

Before the result of the application to Congress could be known 
in Kentucky, the public mind was powerfully directed to the im- 
portance of the navigation of the Mississippi by the return of 
General Wilkinson from New Orleans, and the intelligence that 
he had obtained for himself the privilege of shipping tobacco to 
New Orleans, and depositing it in the king's stores, at the price 
of ten dollars per hundred weight. He immediately offered to 
purchase tobacco to any amount, and dilated eloquently upon 
the advantages that would result to Kentucky, even from the 
partial trade which he had succeeded in opening, but explained 
that a commercial treaty might be formed with Spain, which 
would throw open their ports to the whole western country, if 
the west were erected into an independent government, capable 
of treating with a foreign power. In the meantime Indian hos- 
tility never slumbered, but murders upon the frontier were inces- 
sant. The old confederation was about to expire, despised 
abroad and scarcely respected at home, and early in the spring 
Kentucky was called upon to elect delegates to the Virginia con- 
vention, which was called to adopt or reject the federal constitu- 
tion. Nearly every leading man in Kentucky, and an immense 
majority of the people, were warmly anti-federal ; yet three of 
the Kentucky delegation, one from Fayette and two from Jeffer- 
son, voted in favor of its adoption. The member from Fayette 
was no other than the veteran historian of Kentucky, Humphrey 
Marshall, who certainly voted against the opinion of a majority 
of his constituents. 

On the 28th of July the sixth convention assembled at Dan- 
ville. But scarcely had they organized and commenced business 
when the intelligence was communicated to them, that Congress 
had declined to act upon the petition of Kentucky, and had re- 
ferred the whole subject to the new government. Anger and 
disappointment were strongly expressed in all quarters. The 
party which with invincible firmness had uniformly adhered to 
"law and order," now received a rude shock. The party which 
vaguely and cautiously advocated immediate independence, con- 
trary to law, became more bold and open in urging their project. 
The trade to New Orleans, recently opened by Wilkinson, was 
made to loom largely before the public eye, and unfolded visions 
of future wealth which dazzled the imagination. The old con- 
federation was contemptible, from its helpless imbecility, and the 
new government, yet in embryo, was odious and unpopular. A 
proposition to form a constitution without further delay was 
warmly advocated, and it was proposed in convention that the 
question should be submitted to each militia company in the 
district, and that the captain of said company should report the 


result of the vote. This proposition awakened the most passion- 
ate opposition, and was voted down by a large majority. Yet 
the ambiguous character of the resolutions finally adopted, dis- 
plays the balanced condition of parties in the convention, and 
that neither could fully carry out their designs. They finally 
resolved that a seventh convention be elected in October, and as- 
semble in November, with general power to take the best steps 
for securing admission into the union, and also the navigation of Hue 
Mississippi ; that they have power to form a constitution, and do 
generally whatever may seem necessary to the best interests of 
the district. We clearly recognize the finger of each party in 
the above resolution, and may infer that each .felt their inability 
to carry out decisive measures. 

As the time for the election of the seventh convention ap- 
proached, a publication appeared in the Gazette, signed by George 
Muter, the chief justice of the district court, which, in a concise 
and clear manner points out the particular clauses in the laws of 
Virginia and the articles of confederation, which would be vio- 
lated by the formation of an independent government, in the 
manner proposed by the party of which Wilkinson was the lea- 
der. This publication was universally attributed to Colonel 
Thomas Marshall, of Fayette, the father of the late chief justice 
Marshall. This gentleman had emigrated with his family to 
Kentucky in 1785, had been appointed surveyor of Fayette 
county, and had taken, an active part in the early struggle of 
parties in Kentucky. His opposition to the project of indepen- 
dence, contrary to law, was early, decided, and uncompromising, 
and two tickets were now formed in the county of Fayette, for 
the approaching convention. Colonel Marshall was at the head 
of one, and General Wilkinson of the other. The old English 
party names of" Court," and " Country," were given to them by 
the wits of the day, and the canvass was conducted with a zeal 
and fervor proportioned to the magnitude of the questions in- 
volved in the issue. The election lasted for five days, and it 
soon became evident, that the ticket headed by Marshall was 
running ahead. During the election, Wilkinson so far modified 
his tone, as to declare that his action in the convention should be 
regulated by the instructions of his constituents ; and by the 
strength of his personal popularity, he was elected. Fayette was 
entitled to five representatives, of whom four were elected from 
the ticket headed by Marshall, and Wilkinson alone was elected, 
of the opposite party. 

In November the delegates assembled at Danville, and pro- 
ceeded to business'. The resolution of Congress, transmitted by 
Mr. Brown, was first referred to the committee of the whole, with- 
out opposition. A motion was then made to refer the resolution 
of the last convention, upon the subject of the Mississippi navi- 
gation, to the committee also, in order that the whole subject 
might be before them. The restless jealousy of the " law and 
order party" took alarm at this proposition, and a keen and ani- 


mated debate arose upon the question of reference. Wilkinson, 
Brown, Innis, and Sebastian, were in favor of the reference, while 
it was warmly opposed by Marshall, Muter, Crockett, Allen, and 
Christian. The reference was carried by a large majority. 
Regarding this as an unfavorable indication of the temper of the 
convention, Colonel Crockett left his seat on Saturday, and on 
Monday returned, with a remonstrance, signed by nearly five 
hundred citizens, against violent or illegal separation from their 
eastern brethren. This bold step undoubtedly made a deep im- 
pression upon the convention, and gives a lively indication of the 
strong passions awakened by the discussion. 

In the debate upon the question of reference, Wilkinson and 
Brown had glanced at the project of illegal separation, in a man- 
ner which showed that they were doubtful of the temper of the 
convention. General Wilkinson, after dwelling upon the vital 
importance of the navigation to Kentucky, and the improbability 
that Spain would ever grant it to Congress, concluded, with em- 
phasis, " that there was one way, and only one, of obtaining this rich 
prize for Kentucky, and t/iat way was so guarded by laws, and fortified 
by constitutions, that it was difficult and dangerous of access." He 
added, " that Spain might concede to Kentucky alone, what she 
would not concede to the United States," and " that there was 
information within the power of the convention, upon this sub- 
ject, of the first importance, which, he had no doubt, a gentleman 
in the convention would communicate." He sat down, and 
looked at Mr. Brown ; the eyes of all the members traveled in 
the same direction, expressive of very different emotions. Mr. 
Brown arose, and remarked, " that he did not consider himself at 
liberty to disclose the private conferences held with Don Gardo- 
qui, but this much he would say, in general, ill/at provided they 
were unanimous, everything that they could wish for was within their 
reach." He then resumed his seat. General Wilkinson again 
arose, and read a long manuscript essay upon the navigation of 
the Mississippi, giving the sheets to Sebastian, as they were 
read. This essay was addressed to the Spanish intendant. A 
motion was made to give the thanks of the convention to the 
general, for the essay, which was unanimously concurred in. 

A resolution, offered by Edwards, and seconded by Marshall, 
might be regarded as a test of the temper of the convention. It 
was " to appoint a committee to draw up a decent and respect- 
ful address, to the legislature of Virginia, for obtaining the 
independence of Kentucky, agreeably to the late resolution and 
recommendation of Congress." No opposition was made, and 
the committee was appointed, of whom Wilkinson was one, and 
the only one of his party, on the committee. In due time the 
committee reported, an amendment was moved, which resulted 
in the postponement of the whole matter to a future day. In the 
interval, General Wilkinson brought forward a preamble and 
resolution, which, after lamenting the divisions and distractions 
which appeared in the convention, and urging the necessity of 


unanimity, proposed the appointment of a committee to draw up 
an appeal to the people, for instructions as to their future action, 
upon the great subjects before them. The committee was ap- 
pointed, of which he was chairman. He quickly reported an 
address to the people, which was referred to the committee of the 

Before this was acted upon, the address to the Virginia legis- 
lature, which had been postponed, came up. The address was 
temperate, respectful, and clearly repelled the idea of any but 
constitutional measures. It prayed the good offices of the parent 
State, in procuring their admission into the Union, and if adopted, 
was decisive of the temper of the convention. It was finally 
adopted. Wilkinson's address to the people was never after- 
wards called up. The adoption -of the address to Virginia gave 
it a quiet deathblow, from which it did not attempt to recover. 
An address to Congress was also voted, and was drawn up by 
Wilkinson. The convention then adjourned, to meet again at a 
distant day. 

In the meantime the legislature of Virginia assembled, and, 
having received information of the refusal of Congress to act 
upon the application of Kentucky for admission, they passed a 
third act, requiring the election, in Kentucky, of a seventh con- 
vention, to assemble at Danville, in July 1789, and go over the 
whole ground anew. Thsy gave this convention ample powers 
to provide for the formation of a State government. Two new 
conditions were inserted in this act, which gave serious dissatis- 
faction to Kentucky; but, upon complaint being made, they were 
readily repealed, and need not be further noticed. In other re- 
spects, the act was identical with its predecessors. An English 
agent, from Canada, during this winter, visited Kentucky, and 
called upon Colonel Marshall, and afterwards upon Wilkinson. 
His object seems to have been to sound the temper of Kentucky, 
and ascertain how far she would be willing to unite with Canada, 
in any contingency which might arise. The people, believing 
him to be a British spy, as he undoubtedly was, gave certain 
indications, which caused him to leave the country, with equal 
secrecy and dispatch. 

In the meantime the people quietly elected delegates to the 
seventh convention, as prescribed in the third act of separation, 
which, in July, 1789, assembled in Danville. Their first act was 
to draw up a respectful memorial to the legislature of Virginia, 
remonstrating against the new conditions of separation, which, 
as we have said, was promptly attended to by Virginia, and the 
obnoxious conditions repealed by a new act, which required 
another convention to assemble in 1790. In the meantime the 
new general government had gone into operation ; General Wash- 
ington was elected president, and the convention was informed, 
by the executive of Virginia, that the general government would 
lose no time in organizing such a regular force as would effec- 
tually protect Kentucky from Indian incursions. This had 


become a matter of pressing necessity, for Indian murders had 
become so frequent, that no part of the country was safe. 

The eighth convention assembled in July, 1790, and formally 
accepted the Virginia act of separation, which thus became a 
compact, between Kentucky and Virginia. A memorial to the 
President of the United States and to Congress, was adopted, 
and an address to Virginia, again praying the good offices of the 
parent State in procuring their admission into the Union. Pro- 
vision was then made for the election of a ninth convention, to 
assemble in April, 1791, and form a State constitution. The 
convention then adjourned. In December, 1790, President Wash- 
ington strongly recommended to Congress to admit Kentucky into 
the Union. On the 4th of February, 1791, an act for that pur- 
pose had passed both Houses, and received the signature of the 

We have thus detailed as minutely as our limits would permit, 
the long, vexatious, and often baffled efforts, of the infant com- 
munity of the West, to organize a regular government, and 
obtain admission into the Union. And it is impossible not to be 
struck with the love of order, the respect for law, and the pas- 
sionate attachment to their kindred race, beyond the mountains, 
which characterized this brave and simple race of hunters and 
farmers. The neglect of the old confederation, arose, no doubt, 
from its inherent imbecility, but never was parental care more 
coldly and sparingly administered. Separated by five hundred 
miles of wilderness, exposed to the intrigues of foreign govern- 
ments, powerfully tempted by their own leading statesmen, repul- 
sed in every effort to obtain constitutional independence, they 
yet clung with invincible affection to their government, and 
turned a deaf ear to the syren voice, which tempted them with 
the richest gifts of fortune, to stray away from the fold in which 
they had been nurtured. The spectacle was touching and beau- 
tiful, as it was novel in the history of the world. 




No sooner was the new federal government organized than 
ts attention was anxiously turned to the exposed condition of 
the western frontier. A useless effort to obtain peace for Ken- 
tucky, was quickly followed by a military force such as the west 
had never seen under the federal government, but which was 
still utterly inadequate to the wants of the country. 

General Harmar, at the head of three hundred and fifty regu- 
lars, was authorized to call around his standard fifteen hundred 
militia from Pennsylvania and Virginia. A considerable part of 
this force rendezvoused at Cincinnati, in September, 1790, and 
marched in hostile array upon the Miami towns. The result was 
most disastrous. Two large detachments, composed both of 
regulars and militia, were successively surprised, and routed with 
dreadful slaughter. The regulars were absolutely destroyed, and 
the militia sustained enormous loss. Harmar returned wkh loss 
of reputation, and the events of the campaign were such as to 
impress Kentucky with the belief that regulars were totally unfit 
for Indian warfare. They zealously endeavored to impress this 
truth upon the mind of the President, and were not a little discon- 
tented that he adhered to his own opinion in opposition to theirs. 

To satisfy them as much as possible, however, a local board of 
war was appointed in Kentucky, composed of General Scott, 
Shelby, Innis, Logan, and Brown, who were authorized to call 
out the militia, into the service of the United States, whenever 
they thought proper, to act in conjunction with regular troops. 
Under the direction of this board, an expedition of eight hundred 
mounted men under General Scott, under whom Wilkinson served 
as second in command, was got up against the north-western 
tribes. Some skirmishing ensued, some prisoners were taken, 
and about fifty Indians killed. No loss of any amount was sus- 
tained by the detachment, but no decisive or permanent impres- 
sion was made upon the Indians. 

Warned, by the disastrous campaign of Harmar, of the neces- 
sity of employing a greater force, the general government em- 
ployed two thousand regular troops, composed of cavalry, in- 
fantry, and artillery, in the ensuing campaign. The command 
was given to General St. Glair, the governor of the north-western 
territory. This gentleman was old and infirm, and had been 
very unfortunate in his military career, during the Revolutionary 
war. He was particularly unpopular in Kentucky, and no volun- 
teers could be found to serve under him. One thousand Ken- 
tuckians were drafted, however, and reluctantly compelled to 
serve under a gouty old disciplinarian, whom they disliked, and 
in conjunction with a regular force, which they regarded as 
doomed to destruction in Indian warfare. The consequence was 


that desertions of the militia occurred daily, and when the battle 
day came there were only about two hundred and fifty in camp. 

The army left Cincinnati about the 1st of October, and en- 
camped upon one of the tributaries of the Wabash on the even- 
ing of the 3d of November. Encumbered by wagons and ar- 
tillery, their march through the wilderness had been slow and 
painful. His Kentucky force had dwindled at every step, and 
about the 1st of November a whole regiment deserted. The 
general detached a regiment of regulars after them, to protect 
the stores in the rear, and, with the residue of his force, scarcely 
exceeding one thousand men, continued his march to the encamp- 
ment upon the tributary of the Wabash. Here he was assailed, 
at daylight, by about twelve hundred Indians, who surrounded 
his encampment, and, lurking under such cover as the woods af- 
forded, poured a fire upon his men, more destructive than the 
annals of Indian warfare had yet witnessed. His troops were 
raw, but his officers were veterans, and strove for three hours, 
with a bravery which deserved a better fate, to maintain the 
honor of their arms. Gallant and repeated charges were made 
with the bayonet, and always with temporary success. But 
their nimble adversaries, although retreating from the bayonet, 
still maintained a slaughtering fire upon the regulars, which 
swept away officers and men by scores in every charge. A re- 
treat was at length ordered, which quickly became a rout, and 
a more complete overthrow was never witnessed. The remnant 
of the troops regained fort Jefferson, twenty-nine miles from the 
battle ground, on the night after the battle, and thence retreated 
to Cincinnati, in somewhat better order. 

This dreadful disaster produced great sensation throughout the 
United States, and especially in Kentucky. A corps of mounted 
volunteers assembled with great alacrity, for the purpose of re- 
lieving St. Clair, who was at first supposed to be besieged in fort 
Jefferson, but upon the receipt of more correct intelligence, they 
were disbanded. 

In December, 1791, the ninth and last convention was elected, 
who assembled at Danville in April following, and formed the 
first constitution of Kentucky. George Nicholas, who had emi- 
nently distinguished himself in the Virginia convention which 
adopted the federal constitution, was elected a member of the 
Kentucky convention from the county of Mercer, and took an 
active and leading part in the formation of the first constitution. 
This constitution totally abandoned the aristocratic features of 
the parent State, so far as representation by counties was con- 
cerned, and established numbers as the basis. Suffrage was uni- 
versal, and sheriffs were elected triennially by the people. 

But while these departures from the constitution of Virginia dis- 
played the general predominance of the democratic principle in 
Kentucky, there are strong indications that the young statesmen 
of the west, were disposed to curb the luxuriance of this mighty 
element, by strong checks. The executive, the senate, and the 


judiciary, were entirely removed from the direct control of the 
people. The governor was chosen by electors, who were elected 
by the people for that purpose every fourth year. The mem- 
bers of the senate were appointed by the same electoral col- 
lege which chose the president, and might be selected indiffe- 
rently from any part of the State. The judiciary were appointed 
as at present, and held their offices during good behavior. 
The supreme court, however, had original and final jurisdiction 
in all land cases. This last feature was engrafted upon the 
constitution, by Colonel Nicholas, and was most expensive and 
mischievous in practice. The constitution was adopted, and 
the officers elected, in May, 1792. Isaac Shelby was elected 
governor, a brave and plain officer, who had gallantly served in 
the Revolutionary war, and distinguished himself at Kings' 
Mountain, and Point Pleasant. Alexander Bullitt was chosen 
speaker of the senate, and Robert Breckenridge of the house 
of representatives. The governor met both branches of the 
legislature in the senate chamber, and personally addressed 
them in a brief speech, in reply to which they voted an address. 
James Brown was the first secretary of state, and George Nich- 
olas the first attorney-general. John Brown and John Edwards 
(heretofore political opponents,) were elected, by joint ballot, 
senators to Congress. They fixed upon Frankfort as the future 
seat of government, by a process somewhat singular. Twenty- 
five commissioners were first chosen by general ballot ; then the 
counties of Mercer and Fayette, the rival competitors for the 
seat of government, alternately struck five names from the list 
until the commissioners were reduced to five. These last were 
empowered to fix upon the capital. 

The legislature was busily engaged, during its first session, in 
organizing the government. The judiciary and the revenue 
principally engaged their attention. Acts passed, establishing 
the supreme court, consisting of three judges, county courts, and 
courts of quarter session, the latter having common law and 
chancery jurisdiction over five pounds, and a court of oyer and 
terminer composed of three judges, having criminal jurisdiction, 
and sitting twice in the year. Taxes were imposed upon land, 
cattle, carriages, billiard tables, ordinary licenses and retail stores. 

In the meantime Indian depredations were incessant, and 
General Washington, to the infinite distress of Kentucky, perse- 
vered in the employment of a regular force, instead of mounted 
militia, in the north-west. St. Clair was superseded and Gene- 
ral Wayne became his successor. A regular force, aided by 
militia, was again to be organized, and a final effort made to 
crush the hostile tribes. General Wilkinson received a commis- 
sion in the regular service, and joined the army of Wayne. In 
December, 1792, Colonel John Hardin, of Kentucky, who had 
commanded detachments under Harmar, was sent as a messen- 
ger of peace to the hostile tribes, and was murdered by them. 
Boats were intercepted at every point on the Ohio, from the 


mouth of Kenawha to Louisville, and in some cases their crews 
murdered. Stations upon the frontiers, were sometimes boldly 
attacked, and were kept perpetually on the alert. Yet the Pres- 
ident was compelled, by public opinion, in the east, to make an- 
other fruitless effort for peace with these enraged tribes, during 
the pendency of which effort, all hostilities from Kentucky were 
strictly forbidden. Great dissatisfaction and loud complaints 
against the mismanagement of government were incessant. In 
addition to the Indian war, the excise law told with some effect 
upon the distilleries of Kentucky, and was peculiarly odious. 
Kentucky had been strongly anti-federal at the origin of the 
government, and nothing had occurred since to change this origi- 
nal bias. 

Early in the spring of 1793, circumstances occurred which fan- 
ned the passions of the people into a perfect flame of disaffection. 
The French Revolution had sounded a tocsin which reverberated 
throughout the whole civilized world. The worn out despotisms 
of Europe, after standing aghast for a moment, in doubtful inac- 
tivity, had awakened at length into ill-concerted combinations 
against the young republic, and France was engaged in a life 
and death struggle, against Britain, Spain, Prussia, Austria, and 
the German principalities. With this war the United States had, 
strictly, nothing to do, and the best interests of the country clearly 
required a rigid neutrality ; which President Washington had not 
only sagacity to see, but firmness to enforce by a proclamation, 
early in 1793. The passions of the people, however, far outran 
all consideration of prudence or interest, and displayed them- 
selves in favor of France, with a frantic enthusiasm which threat- 
ened perpetually to involve the country in a disastrous war with 
all the rest of Europe. The terrible energy which the French 
Republic displayed, against such fearful odds, the haughty crest 
with which she confronted her enemies, and repelled them from 
her frontier on every point, presented a spectacle well calculated 
to dazzle the friends of democracy throughout the world. The 
horrible atrocities which accompanied these brilliant efforts of 
courage, were overlooked in the fervor of a passionate sym- 
pathy, or attributed, in part, to the exaggerations of the British 

The American people loved France as their ally in the Revo- 
lution, and now regarded her as a sister republic contending for 
freedom against banded despots. The sympathy was natural, 
and sprang from the noblest principles of the heart, but was not 
on that account, less threatening and disastrous to the future 
happiness and prosperity of the country. Washington, fully 
aware of the danger, boldly and firmly strove to restrain the 
passions of his countrymen from overt acts of hostility to the 
powers at war with France, and in so doing, brought upon him- 
self a burst of passion, which put his character to the most 
severe test. In no part of the world did the French fever blaze 
more brightly than in Kentucky. Attributing to English perfidy 


in refusing to surrender the western posts, the savage murders, 
which desolated their frontier, they hated that nation with the 
same fierce fervor with which they loved France. The two pas- 
sions fanned each other, and united with the excise and the 
Indian war in kindling a spirit of disaffection to the general gov- 
ernment, which, more than once, assumed a threatening aspect. 

Citizen Genet, the ambassador of the French Republic, landed 
at Charleston in the spring of 1793, and was received with a 
burst of enthusiasm, which seems completely to have turned his 
brain. His progress through the country to New York, was like 
the triumphant march of a Roman conqueror. Treating the 
President's proclamation of neutrality with contempt, he pro- 
ceeded openly to arm and equip privateers, and to enlist crews 
in American ports to cruize against the commerce of England 
and Spain, as if the United States were openly engaged in the 
war, as an ally of France. Four French agents were sent by 
him to Kentucky, with orders to enlist an army of two thousand 
men, appoint a generalissimo, and descending the Ohio and Mis- 
sissippi in boats, attack the Spanish settlements at the mouth of 
the Mississippi, and bring the whole of that country under the 
dominion of the French republic. The troops and officers were 
to receive the usual pay of French soldiers, and magnificent 
donations of land in the conquered provinces. 

There was a cool impudence in all this which startled the minds 
of many, but the great mass were so thoroughly imbued with 
the French fever, that they embraced the project with ardor, and 
regarded the firm opposition of Washington with open indig- 
nation, expressed in the strongest terms. General George Rogers 
Clark accepted the office of Generalissimo, with the high 
sounding title of "Major General in the armies of France and 
Commander in Chief of the French Revolutionary Legions on 
the Mississippi," and great activity was displayed in enlisting 
men and officers for the expedition. Upon the first intelligence 
of this extraordinary project, the President caused Governor 
Shelby to be informed of it, and explaining to him the mischief 
which would result to the United States, requested him to warn 
the citizens against it. The governor replied, that he did not 
believe that any such project was contemplated in Kentucky, 
" That her citizens were possessed of too just a sense of the 
obligations due to the general government to embark in such an 

In the meantime democratic societies, somewhat in imitation 
of the terrible Jacobin clubs of France, were established in the 
east, and rapidly extended to Kentucky. There were established 
during the summer of 1793, one in Lexington, another in George- 
town, and a third in Paris. Their spirit was violently anti-fede- 
ral. The navigation of the Mississippi, the excise, the Indian 
war, the base truckling to England, the still baser desertion of 
France, in the hour of her terrible struggle with the leagued des- 
potism of the old world, became subjects of passionate declama- 


tion in the clubs, and violent invectives in the papers. The pro- 
tracted negotiation then in progress with Spain, relative to the 
navigation of the Mississippi, although pressed by the executive, 
with incessant earnestness, had as yet borne no fruit. The sleep- 
less jealousy of the west, upon that subject, was perpetually 
goaded into distrust of the intentions of the general government. 
It was rumored that their old enemy, Jay, was about to be sent 
to England, to form an alliance with that hated power, against 
their beloved France ; and it was insinuated that the old project, 
of abandoning the navigation of the Mississippi, would be revi- 
ved the moment that the power in Congress could be obtained. 
Under the influence of all these circumstances, it would have 
been difficult to find a part of the United States in which anti- 
federal passions blazed more fiercely than in Kentucky. The 
French emissaries found their project received with the warmest 
favor. The free navigation of the Mississippi forever, would be 
the only direct benefit accruing to Kentucky, but French pay, 
French rank, and lands ad libitum, were the allurements held out 
to the private adventurers. 

In November, 1793, there was a second communication from 
the President to the governor. This stated that the Spanish 
minister, at Washington, had complained of the armament pre- 
paring in Kentucky, mentioned the names of the Frenchmen 
engaged in it, of whom Lachaise and Depeau were chief, and 
earnestly exhorted the governor to suppress the enterprise, by 
every means in his power, suggesting legal prosecution, and, in 
case of necessity, a resort to the militia. The governor of the 
north-western territory (the unfortunate St. Clair), about the 
same time, communicated to Governor Shelby, that extraordinary 
preparations seemed to be going on for the enterprise. Two of 
the French emissaries also wrote to the governor, and we are 
tempted to give the letter of Depeau in full. Here it is : 


It may appear quite strange to write to you on a subject, in 
which, although it is of some consequence. With confidence 
from the French ambassador I have been dispatched with more 
Frenchmen to join the expedition of the Mississippi. As I am to 
procure the provision I am happy to communicate to you, what- 
ever you shall think worthy of my notice, as I hope I have in 
no way disoblige you ; if I have, I will most willingly ask your 
pardon. For no body can be more than 1 am, willing for your 
prosperity and happiness. As some strange reports has reached 
my ears that your excellence has positive orders to arrest all citi- 
zens inclining to our assistance, and as my remembrance know 
by your conduct, in justice you will satisfy in this uncommon 
request. Please let me know as I shall not make my supply 
till your excellence please to honor me with a small answer. I 
am your well wisher in remaining for the French cause, a true 
citizen Democrat. CHARLES DEPEAU." 


" Postscript. Please to participate some of these hand bills to 
that noble society of democrats. I also enclose a paper from 

The governor replied to citizen Depeau in a grave and formal 
manner, reciting, at length, the information and instructions he 
had received from the department of state, and concluding with 
the remark, that his official position would compel him to pay 
some attention to them. As to whether he "participated" the 
handbills to the " noble society of democrats," the voice of his- 
tory is, unfortunately, silent. 

About the same time General Wayne wrote to the Governor, 
advising him that the regular cavalry, then wintering in Ken- 
tucky, under the command of Major Winston, would be subject 
to his orders, and that an additional force should be furnished, if 
necessary, to repress any illegal expedition from Kentucky. 
The reply of the governor to the secretary of state, is somewhat 
curious, and shows that the views of the brave and plain old 
soldier had become somewhat warped, from their original simpli- 
city, by the nice distinctions and quibbling subtleties of his legal 
advisers. The following extracts from his reply are given. 

"I have great doubts, even if they (General Clark and the 
Frenchmen,) attempt to carry this plan into execution, (provided 
they manage the business with prudence,) whether there is any 
legal authority to restrain or to punish them, at least before they 
have actually accomplished it. For if it is lawful for any one 
citizen of this state to leave it, it is equally so for any number of 
them to do it. It is also lawful for them to carry with them any 
quantity of provisions, ammunition and arms. And if the act is 
lawful in itself, there is nothing but the intention with which it is 
done which can make it unlawful. But I know of no law \vhich 
inflicts a punishment upon Intention only, or any criterion by 
which to decide what would be sufficient evidence of that inten- 
tion." Again he says, "Much less would I assume power to 
exercise it against men whom I consider as friends and brethren, 
in favor of a man, whom I view as an enemy and a tyrant. I 
shall also feel but little inclination to take an active part in pun- 
ishing or restraining my fellow citizens for a supposed intention 
only, to gratify or remove the fears of the minister of a prince 
who openly withholds from us an invaluable right, and who se- 
cretly instigates against us a most savage and cruel enemy." 

These extracts are given as powerfully illustrative of the 
times. The course of reasoning and passions disclosed in them, 
were not peculiar to Governor Shelby, but were shared by a vast 
majority of the citizens of every class. Upon receiving this 
answer, the President gave orders to General Wayne to occupy 
fort Massac with artillery', and to take such other steps as might 
be necessary to arrest this mad expedition. 

In the mean time, the democratic societies resorted to every 
method of inflaming the popular mind upon the subject of the 
navigation of the Mississippi, and the jealousy of the east, 


which they contended was the true cause of the failure of the 
general government to procure it for them. They had invited a 
general meeting of the people in Lexington, in the spring of 
1794, where resolutions were adopted of a violent character, 
breathing the deepest hostility to the general government, and 
inviting the citizens of the different counties to hold meetings 
and elect delegates to a convention, whose object was not pre- 
cisely defined, but which looked in the old direction of separation. 
Just at this time, however, the intelligence came that citizen 
Genet had been recalled, that his acts were disavowed by the 
French government, and all his proceedings disapproved. At 
once, Messieurs Lachaise and Depeau lost all authority, General 
Clark was stripped of his magnificent title, and the splendid 
vision of conquest in the south, which had dazzled the eyes of 
the Kentuckians, vanished into air. The project of a conven- 
tion, so fiercely demanded by the late resolutions, fell still-born, 
and a reasonable degree of tranquility was restored to the public 

In the mean time preparations for another campaign against 
the Indians, were incessantly urged by the President. During 
the summer of 1793, a powerful regular force had been concen- 
trated at Cincinnati, and a requisition was made on Governor 
Shelby for one thousand mounted riflemen. None would volun- 
teer, and a draft was again resorted to. The reinforcement 
reached Wayne in October, and during its stay, had an opportu- 
nity of witnessing the energy and discipline infused into the 
regular force by its gallant commander. 

The season was too far advanced for active operations, and 
the Kentucky contingent was dismissed until the following spring. 
A much better opinion of the efficiency of a regular force was 
diffused through the country by the return of the mounted men, 
and in the following spring, fifteen hundred volunteers took the 
field with alacrity under the command of General Scott, and 
joined the regular force under Wayne. That intrepid com- 
mander, after one more ineffectual effort to obtain peace, marched 
into the heart of the hostile country, and on the morning of the 
20th of August, attacked them in a formidable position which 
they occupied near the rapids of the Miami. A dense forest, for 
miles had been overthrown by a tempest, and the Indians occu- 
pied this forest, upon which neither cavalry nor artillery could 
make any effectual impression. Wayne ordered the mounted 
riflemen to make a circuit far to the left and operate upon the 
right flank and rear of the enemy, while the regular infantry 
was formed, under the eye of the commander in chief, directly 
in front of the fallen timber. After allowing time for the 
mounted men to take their designated position, the general or- 
dered the regulars to make a rapid charge with the bayonet 
upon the Indian position, without firing a shot until the enemy 
should be roused from their covert, and then to deliver a general 
fire. This order was promptly executed, and resulted in a total 


route of the enemy. The conquering troops pressed their ad- 
vantage, and never was victory more complete. The action 
was fought almost under the guns of a British fort, and the routed 
enemy fled in that direction. It was with the utmost difficulty 
that a collision was prevented, as the Kentucky troops were 
violently incensed against the British, who undoubtedly furnished 
the Indians with arms and ammunition. All the houses and 
stores around the fort were destroyed, notwithstanding the spi- 
rited remonstrances of the British commandant, but further hos- 
tilities were avoided. 

This brilliant success was followed by the most decisive results. 
A long series of defeats had injured the credit of the govern- 
ment, and the Indian tribes of the east and south, gave indica- 
tions of a disposition to co-operate with their brethren in the 
north-west. But the shock of the victory at the Rapids, was 
instantly felt in all quarters. A treaty was made with the hos- 
tile tribes, which was observed until the war of 1812, while the 
Six Nations of the east, and the Cherokees in the south, instantly 
became pacific, even to servility. 

The effect in Kentucky was scarcely less propitious. A better 
feeling towards the general government was instantly visible, 
which manifested itself by the election of Humphrey Marshall, 
in the ensuing winter, to the Senate of the United States, over 
the popular and talented John Breckinridge ; Marshall being a 
determined federalist, and his competitor a republican or 

During this winter an attempt was made by the legislature 
to remove by address two of the judges of the supreme court, 
George Muter and Benjamin Sebastian. Their crime was a de- 
cision in an important land suit, flagrantly illegal, and which 
would have been most mischievous in its consequences, if adhe- 
red to. The effort, as usual, failed, but the court revised its 
opinion and changed its decision. By another act, the courts of 
quarter session were abolished, as well as the court of oyer and 
terminer, and the district courts established in their places. All 
the judges expired with their courts. Original jurisdiction in 
land cases was also taken away from the supreme court, and 
conferred upon the district courts. An act also passed obliging 
every white male, over sixteen, to kill a certain number of crows 
and squirrels annually, which is too characteristic of the times 
to be omitted. 

The good humor created by Wayne's victory was sadly disturb- 
ed by the intelligence received in the spring of 1795, that Jay had 
concluded a treaty with Great Britain, which, if ratified, would pro- 
duce the immediate surrender of the north-western posts, and 
insure peace, tranquillity, and rapid appreciation of property in 
Kentucky. Yet so much more powerful is passion than interest, 
that the intelligence of this treaty was received with a burst of 
fury, throughout Kentucky, that knew no bounds. The people 
regarded it as a base desertion of an ancient friend struggling 


with a host of enemies, and a cowardly truckling to England, 
from cold blooded policy, or a secret attachment to aristocratic 
institutions. Their senator, Marshall, with that firmness of pur- 
pose which eminently distinguished him through life, had voted 
for the conditional ratification of the treaty, against the wishes 
of a vast majority of his constituents. This determined exercise 
of his own judgment, exposed him to popular odium, and even 
personal violence upon his return, from which he made a narrow 

A treaty with Spain was also concluded in October, 1795, by 
which the right to navigate the Mississippi to the ocean, was 
conceded to the United States, together with a right of deposit 
at New Orleans, which, in effect, embraced all that Kentucky 
desired. Peace with the Indians, the surrender of the posts, the 
navigation of the Mississippi, had at length been obtained, by 
the incessant exertions of the general government, for Kentucky. 

But pending the negotiation with Spain, an intrigue was com- 
menced, between the agents of that power and certain citizens 
of Kentucky, which was not fully disclosed to the country until 
the year 1806, and the full extent of which is not even yet cer- 
tainly known. In July, 1795, the Spanish governor, Carondelet, 
dispatched a certain Thomas Power to Kentucky, with a letter 
to Benjamin Sebastian, then a judge of the Court of Appeals of 
Kentucky. In this communication he alludes to the confidence 
reposed in the judge by his predecessor, General Miro, and the 
former correspondence which had passed between them. He de- 
clared that his Catholic majesty was willing to open the Missis- 
sippi to the western country, and to effect that object, and to nego- 
tiate a treaty, in relation to this and other matters, Sebastian 
was requested to have agents chosen by the people of Kentucky, 
who should meet Colonel Gayoso, a Spanish agent, at New 
Madrid, when all matters could be adjusted. Judge Sebastian 
communicated this letter to Judge Innis, George Nicholas and 
William Murray, the latter a very eminent lawyer of Kentucky, 
of the federal party, and they all agreed that Sebastian should 
meet Gayoso at New Madrid, and hear what he had to propose. 
The meeting accordingly took place, and the outline of a treaty 
was agreed to, but before matters were concluded, intelligence 
was received of the treaty concluded with Spain by the United 
States, by which the navigation was effectually and legally se- 
cured. The Spanish governor broke up the negotiation, much 
to the dissatisfaction of Sebastian, who concluded that the regular 
treaty would not be ratified, and preferred carrying out the irreg- 
ular negotiation then commenced. 

All communication then ceased, so far as is known, until 1797. 
The commissioners were busily engaged in marking the line of 
boundary between Spain and the United States, as fixed by the 
treaty, when Carondelet again opened the negotiation. His for- 
mer agent, Thomas Power, again appeared in Louisville, with a 
letter to Sebastian, and a request that Sebastian would disclose 


its contents to Innis, Nicholas and Murray. Sebastian positively 
refused to hold any intercourse with Murray, but instantly show- 
ed the letter to Judge Tnnis. The scheme unfolded in this letter 
was, " to withdraw from the federal union and form an indepen- 
dent western government. To effect this object it was suggested 
that these gentlemen should, by a series of eloquently written 
publications, dispose the public mind to withdraw from any fur- 
ther connection with the Atlantic States. In consideration of 
the devotion of their time and talents to this purpose, it was 
proposed that the sum of one hundred thousand dollars should be 
appropriated to their use, by his Catholic majesty. Should any 
one in office, in Kentucky, be deprived thereof, on account of his 
connection with Spain, the full value of said office was to be 
paid to him by his majesty." This article was inserted at the 
suggestion of Sebastian. 

To effect these great objects, it was proposed that twenty pie- 
ces of field artillery, with a large supply of small arms and mu- 
nitions of war, together with one hundred thousand dollars in 
money, should instantly be furnished to Kentucky by the King of 
Spain, as his majesty's quota in aid of the enterprise. Fort 
Massac was to be seized instantly, and the federal troops were to 
be dispossessed of all posts upon the western waters. The only 
stipulation for the benefit of his Catholic majesty was an exten- 
sion of his northern boundary, to the mouth of the Yazoo, and 
thence due east to the Tombigbee. For this miserable pittance 
of desert territory, this corrupt and worn out despotism was 
willing to violate its faith recently plighted in a solemn treaty, 
and, by treachery and intrigue, to sow the seeds of discord and 
revolution, where all was peace and confidence. Such was the 
morality of courts in the eighteenth century. 

This proposal was received by Sebastian with great coolness, 
and submitted to Innis for his opinion. The testimony of Innis 
himself is all that we have to rely on, as to the manner in which 
he received the proposition. He declares that he denounced 
the proposal as dangerous and improper, and gave it as his opin- 
ion that it ought to be rejected. Sebastian concurred in this 
opinion, but desired Innis to see Colonel Nicholas, and have a 
written answer prepared for Power, declaring that whatever 
they concurred in would be approved by him. Innis saw Nich- 
olas, who wrote a refusal couched in calm but decisive language, 
which was signed by them both, and delivered to Power, through 
the medium of judge Sebastian. No disclosure was made by 
either of the parties of this proposal from the Spanish govern- 
ment. Power, in the mean time, visited Wilkinson, who still 
held a command in the regular army, and then was stationed in 
garrison at Detroit. Power's ostensible object in visiting Wilkin- 
son was to deliver to him a letter of remonstrance from Governor 
Carondelet, against the United States taking immediate posses- 
sion of the posts on the Mississippi. His real object was, no 
doubt, to sound him upon the Spanish proposition. Power after- 


wards reported to Carondelet, that Wilkinson received him cold- 
ly, informed him that the governor of the north-west had orders 
from the President to arrest him, and send him on to Philadel- 
phia, and that there was no way for him to escape, but to permit 
himself to be conducted, under guard, to fort Massac, whence he 
could find his way to New Madrid. He states that in their first 
conference Wilkinson observed, bitterly, " We are both lost, with- 
out deriving any benefit from your journey." He pronounced the 
Spanish proposal a chimerical project, that the west having ob- 
tained, by the late treaty, all that they desired, had no motive to 
form any connection with Spain. That the best thing Spain 
could do, would be honestly to comply with the treaty ; that his 
personal Jionor forbade him to listen to the project; that tlw late 
treaty had overturned all his plans, and rendered his labors for ten 
years useless; that he had destroyed his ciphers, and complained 
that his secret had been divulged ; that he might be named gover- 
nor of Natchez, and he might then, perhaps, have power to realize 
his political projects. 

In this report to Carondelet, Power represents Sebastian as 
speaking to him in a more encouraging tone of the prospect of 
a union of Kentucky with Spain. Sebastian expressed the opin- 
ion that, in case of a war with Spain, Kentucky might be induced 
to take part against the Atlantic States. In conclusion, Power 
gives his own opinion, that nothing short of a war with France or 
the denial of the navigation of the Mississippi could induce Ken- 
tucky to separate herself from the eastern States. After visiting 
Wilkinson, instead of returning to Louisville, as he had at first 
intended, he was sent, by Wilkinson, under escort of Captain 
Shaumbergh, of the United States' army, to fort Massac, and 
thence returned to New Madrid. At Massac he received from 
Sebastian the letter of Nicholas and Innis. Nothing certainly 
was known of the particulars of this transaction, until 1806, 
when it became public that Sebastian had received a pension of 
two thousand dollars from Spain, from about 1795 to 1806. 

After the English and Spanish treaties had been ratified, 
Washington retired from office, and John Adams, greatly to the 
dissatisfaction of Kentucky, was elected President of the United 
States. The eyes of the people became henceforth directed to 
the general government, and they participated fiercely in the old 
party struggle of federalist and republican, or democrat. If the 
administration of Washington was unpopular, that of Adams 
was absolutely odious, in Kentucky. In no part of the Union 
were his measures denounced with more bitterness, nor his 
downfall awaited with more impatience. 

The only domestic question which excited much interest, was 
the propriety of calling a convention to revise the old constitu- 
tion. The people were becoming weary of seeing the governor 
and senate removed so far from their control, and equally weary 
of the sheriffs, which popular suffrage had given them. Accord- 
ing to the provisions of the constitution, a poll was opened in 


May, 1797, and the votes of the citizens taken for or against a 
convention. There were 5446 votes given for a convention, 
out of 9814 votes regularly returned. But five counties did not 
return the whole number of their votes, and the result was 

A second vote was given in May, 1798, and there were returned 
8804 for a convention, out of 11,853 votes returned. But no less 
than ten counties failed to return the whole number of their 
votes, and eight counties did not vote at all on the subject. It is 
certain that there was not a majority for a convention upon the 
first vote, and probably not upon the second. By the constitu- 
tion, a majority of all the legal votes was required two years in 
succession, or else a majority of two-thirds of the legislature. 
So far as the vote of the people was concerned the convention 
had failed, but the legislature, believing such to be the will of 
their constituents, called a convention, by a constitutional major- 
ity, in the session of 1798 9. 

This session was rendered memorable, also, by the passage of 
certain resolutions declaratory of the powers of the general gov- 
ernment, and the rights and privileges of the States. At the 
opening of the session, Governor Garrard, who had succeeded 
Shelby, in his address to the legislature, denounced severely, the 
acts recently passed by congress, commonly known as the alien 
and sedition laws. Early in the session a series of resolutions, 
which were originally drawn up by Mr. Jefferson, were presented to 
the house by John Breckenridge, the representative from Fayette, 
and almost unanimously adopted. The only member who spoke 
against them, and steadily voted, generally alone, against the 
whole series, was that William Murray, to whom, in conjunction 
with others, the letter of Carondelet was directed, and with 
whom Sebastian refused to hold any communication on the sub- 
ject. These resolutions, taken in connection with those passed 
at the succeeding session, in substance declare, " That the con- 
stitution of the United States is a compact between the several 
States, as States, each sovereign State being an integral party to 
that compact. That as in other compacts between equal sove- 
reigns, who have no common judge, each party has the right to 
interpret the compact for itself, and is bound by no interpretation 
but its own. That the general government has no final right in 
any of its branches, to interpret the extent of its own powers. 
That these powers are limited, within certain prescribed bounds, 
and that all acts of the general government, not warranted by 
its powers, may properly be nullified by a State, within its own 
boundaries." These resolutions are remarkable, as clearly ex- 
pressing the political views of Mr. Jefferson, at the time, and as 
containing, not merely the germ, but the fully developed doctrine 
of nullification, which has since become so celebrated, and which 
has since been so heartily and strongly denounced, not only by 
Kentucky, but almost every other State in the Union. 

A copy of the resolutions was sent to each State in the Union, 


and were assented to by none, save Virginia. Some of her sister 
sovereigns handled the Kentucky doctrine with great roughness, 
and exposed its falsehood with merciless severity. The resolu- 
tions were approved by Governor Garrard, and thus fastened upon 
Kentucky the mark of nullification, until the session of 1832, 
when the true doctrine was strongly proclaimed. 

In the spring of 1799 the members of the convention were 
elected, and in July that body assembled, and adopted the pre- 
sent constitution. In June, 1800, the new constitution went 
into operation. James Garrard was re-elected governor, and 
Alexander Bullitt lieutenant-governor. Never was a govern- 
ment changed with so little sensation. But the indifference of 
Kentucky to a change of government did not extend to national 
affairs. The defeat of Adams and the election of Jefferson, the 
downfall of the federalists, and the exaltation of the republican 
or democratic party, produced a whirlwind under which the Union 
rocked to its foundation. Kentucky, with great unanimity, sup- 
ported Jefferson, and no State exulted more in his election. 

In the winter session of 1801, the legislature of Kentucky 
repealed the act establishing district courts, and established the 
circuit courts as they now exist. At the same session an insu- 
rance company was chartered in Lexington, to which banking 
powers were given, by a clause, which was not thoroughly under- 
stood by the members who voted for it, and thus was the first 
bank chartered in Kentucky. The political party which then 
controlled Kentucky held banks in horror, and never would 
have passed the bill, had they understood its provisions. 


IN the year 1802, Kentucky, in common with the whole west- 
ern country, was thrown into a ferment, by the suspension of 
the American right of deposit at New Orleans, which had been 
guarantied by the Spanish treaty for three years, with the further 
provision, that at the end of three years, should the right of de- 
posit at New Orleans be withheld, some other place should be 
afforded, for the same purpose, near the mouth of that river. 
This right was now refused by Morales, the Spanish intendant, 
and no equivalent place of deposit was granted. The treaty was 
evidently violated, and the commerce of the west struck at in its 
most vital point. The excitement increased, when it was under- 
stood that Louisiana had been ceded to France, and that this 
important point was held by Napoleon, then first consul of the 


A motion was made in the senate of the United States to 
authorize President Jefferson instantly to take and hold possession 
of New Orleans; but milder counsels prevailed, and Mr. Monroe 
was dispatched to France, in order to arrange this difficulty with 
the first consul. He found Napoleon on the eve of a rupture 
with Great Britain, and fully impressed with the utter impossi- 
bility of retaining so distant and so assailable a colony as Lou- 
isiana, while Great Britain ruled the seas. He determined to 
place it beyond the reach of the English navy, by selling it to the 
Americans, before the English could equip an expedition against 
it, which he plainly saw would be one of the first measures 
adopted, after the rupture of the peace of Amiens. The Ameri- 
can minister expected to negotiate for a place of deposit at the 
mouth of the river, and was informed that for the trifling sum of 
fifteen millions he could purchase a magnificent empire. 

No time was lost in closing this extraordinary sale, as Bona- 
parte evidently apprehended that Louisiana would be taken by 
the British fleet, within six months after hostilities commenced. 
And thus the first great annexation of territory to the United 
States was accomplished. The Floridas, Oregon, Texas, have 
followed, and the end is not yet. 

In 1804, Christopher Greenup was elected governor of Ken- 
tucky, and Mr. Jefferson was re-elected President of the United 
States, without any organized opposition. So popular and bril- 
liant had been his administration. 

Aaron Burr, who had been elected Vice President in 1801, had 
lost the confidence of his party, and was at variance with the 
President. In 1805, this extraordinary man first made his ap- 
pearance in Kentucky, and visited Lexington and Louisville. He 
then passed on to Nashville, St. Louis, Natchez, and New Orleans, 
and again returned to Lexington, where he remained for some 
time. General Wilkinson, at this time, commanded the United 
States' troops in Louisiana, and the affairs of the United States 
with Spain were in an unsatisfactory state. That miserable 
power resented the purchase of Louisiana, by the United States, 
and assumed a sulkiness of demeanor somewhat resembling that 
of Mexico in more modern times. In the spring of 1806, their 
forces advanced to the Sabine, in somewhat hostile array, and 
General Wilkinson had orders to be upon the alert, and repel 
them if they should cross that barrier. Such was the aspect of 
affairs, when in 1806, colonel Burr again appeared in the west, 
spending a large portion of his time at Blannerhasset's Island, 
on the Ohio river, but being seen in Lexington, Nashville and 

This extraordinary man having quarreled with the President, 
and lost caste with the republican party, endeavored to retrieve 
his political fortunes by becoming a candidate for the office of 
governor, in New York, in opposition to the regular democratic 
candidate. He was supported by the mass of the federalists 
and a small section of the democrats who still adhered to him. 


He lost his election chiefly by the influence of Hamilton, who 
scrupled not to represent him as unworthy of political trust, and 
deprived him of the cordial support of the federalists. Deeply 
stung by his defeat, Burr turned fiercely upon his illustrious an- 
tagonist, and killed him in a duel. Hamilton was idolized by 
the federalists, and even his political adversaries were not insen- 
sible to his many lofty and noble qualities. Burr found himself 
abandoned by the mass of the democrats, regarded with abhor- 
rence by the federalists, and banished from all the legitimate and 
honorable walks of ambition. In this desperate state of his po- 
litical fortunes, he sought the west, and became deeply involved 
in schemes as desperate and daring as any which the annals of 
ill regulated ambition can furnish. 

The ground work of his plan, undoubtedly, was to organize a 
military force upon the western waters, descend the Mississippi, 
and wrest from Spain an indefinite portion of her territory ad- 
joining the Gulf of Mexico. The southwestern portion of the 
United States, embracing New Orleans and the adjacent territory, 
was, either by force or persuasion, to become a part of the new 
empire, of which New Orleans was to become the capital, and 
Burr the chief, under some one of the many names, which, in 
modern times, disguise despotic power under a republican guise. 
These were the essential and indispensable features of the plan. 
But if circumstances were favorable, the project was to extend 
much farther, and the whole country west of the Alleghenies 
was to be wrested from the American Union, and to become a 
portion of this new and magnificent empire. 

Mad and chimerical as this project undoubtedly was, when the 
orderly and law-respecting character of the American people is 
considered, yet the age in which it was conceived had witnessed 
wonders, which had far outstripped the sober calculations of phi- 
losophy and surpassed the limits of probable fiction. When the 
historian, Gibbon, was closing his great work upon the decline 
and fall of the Roman empire, he expressed the opinion that the 
age of great and startling revolutions had passed away, never to 
return ; that mankind had become sobered down by centuries of 
experience, to a tame and moderate level, which would not admit 
of those brilliant materials for history which the past had af- 
forded. Scarcely had this opinion been recorded, when the great 
drama opened in France, and for twenty-five years, the world 
stood aghast at the series of magnificent and wonderful pageants, 
which moved before them in the wild confusion of a feverish 
dream. Kings became beggars, and peasants became kings. 
Ancient kingdoms disappeared, and new and brilliant republics 
sprung up in their places. Names, boundaries, ranks, titles, reli- 
gions, all were tossed about like withered leaves before the wind. 
A lieutenant in a French regiment had mounted to the throne of 
western Europe, and drummers, corporals and privates, had be- 
come dukes, princes, and kings. 

It was not wonderful, then, that a man like Burr, ostracised in 


the east, and desperate in his fortunes, abounding in talent, energy, 
and courage, should have determined in the new world, like the 
Corsican in the old, to stand the hazard of the die, for empire or 
a grave. The unsettled relations then existing with Spain af- 
forded a specious cloak to his enterprise, and enabled him to 
give it a character suitable to the temper of the persons whom 
he addressed. To the daring youth of the west, desirous of 
military adventure, he could represent it as an irregular expedi- 
tion to be undertaken upon private account, against the posses- 
sions of a nation with whom the United States would shortly be 
at war. It was upon land what privateering was upon the ocean. 
He could hint to them that the United States' government would 
connive at the expedition, but could not openly countenance it until 
hostilities actually commenced. ' There is little doubt that many 
concurred in the enterprise, without being aware of its treasonable 
character, while it is certain that to others the scheme was expo- 
sed in its full deformity. 

In the prosecution of his object, he applied himself with sin- 
gular address to any one who could be useful to him in forwarding 
the great scheme. Blannerhasset's Island lay directly in his path, 
and he fixed his keen eye upon the proprietor as one who could 
be useful to him. This unfortunate man was an Irish gentleman, 
reputed to be of great wealth, married to a beautiful and accom- 
plished woman, secluded and studious in his habits, devoted to 
natural science, and as unfitted for the turbulent struggle of ac- 
tive ambitious life, as Burr was for those simple and quiet pur- 
suits, in which his victim found enjoyment and happiness. Blan- 
nerhasset's wealth, though, could be employed to advantage. 
Burr opened the correspondence by a flattering request to be 
permitted to examine Blannerhasset's grounds and garden, which 
had been improved at great expense. Once admitted, he em- 
ployed all the address and eloquence of which he was master, 
in turning the whole current of Blannerhasset's thoughts, from 
the calm sedentary pursuits in which he had hitherto delighted, 
to those splendid visions of empire, greatness and wealth, with 
which his own ardent imagination was then so fiercely glowing. 
No better evidence of Burr's power need be desired, than the 
absolute command which he obtained over the will and fortune 
of this man. He moulded him to his purpose, inspired him with 
a frantic enthusiasm in his cause, and obtained complete com- 
mand of all that Blannerhasset had to offer. 

The scheme of separation from the Atlantic States had been 
too much agitated in Kentucky, not to have left some materials 
for Burr to work upon, and that he neglected no opportunity of 
rallying the fragments of the old party, may be readily believed. 
There is no doubt that General Adair concurred in his scheme, 
so far as an expedition against the Spanish provinces was con- 
cerned; and it is certain that Burr himself calculated upon the 
co-operation of Wilkinson, and held frequent intercourse with 
him. During the summer of 1806, the public mind in Kentucky, 


became agitated by rumors of secret expeditions and conspira- 
cies; in which Burr and others were implicated, but all was 
wrapped in mystery and doubt. 

At length a paper entitled the " Western World," published in 
Frankfort, by Wood & Street, came out with a series of articles, 
in which the old intrigue of Sebastian with Power, and the pre- 
sent project of Burr, were blended, in a somewhat confused man- 
ner, and some round assertions of facts were made, and some 
names implicated which created no small sensation. Sebastian, 
then a judge of the supreme court, was boldly asserted to be an 
intriguer with Spain, and a pensioner of the Spanish crown. 
Innis, then a judge of the federal court ; Brown, a senator in Con- 
gress from Kentucky ; Wilkinson, a general in the regular army, 
were all implicated. Burr was plainly denounced as a traitor, 
and the whole of his scheme was unfolded. There was a mix- 
ture of truth and error in these articles, which no one was 
then able to separate, and the public mind was completely bewil- 
dered at the number of atrocious plots which were exposed, and 
at the great names implicated. The friends of some of the par- 
ties violently resented the articles, and pistols and dirks were re- 
sorted to, to silence the accusation. But the paper sturdily ad- 
hered to its charges, and an address was prepared and published, 
to the legislature elected in 1806, praying an inquiry into the 
conduct of Sebastian, which was circulated among the people 
for signatures, and was signed by a great number, particularly in 
the county of Woodford. 

In the meantime Colonel Joseph Hamilton Daviess, the attor- 
ney for the United States, appeared in open court, before Judge 
Innis on the 3d of November, and moved for process to compel 
the attendance of Burr, before the court, to answer to a charge 
of a high misdemeanor, in organizing a military expedition 
against a friendly power, from within the territory and jurisdic- 
tion of the United States. This motion was grounded upon the 
oath of the attorney, setting forth with great accuracy the prepa- 
rations then being made by Burr, and imputing to him designs 
which subsequent events proved to have been well understood 
by the attorney. This startling affidavit created immense sen- 
sation at the time. Burr was then popular in Kentucky, and 
was caressed and countenanced by her most eminent citizens. Da- 
viess was greatly admired, for those splendid powers of eloquence 
which he possessed, in a degree rarely if ever surpassed, but la- 
bored under the odium of being an incurable federalist, and 
equally bold and eloquent in expressing his opinions. Nine- 
tenths of the public at the time, were startled at the boldness of 
the accusation, and seem to have attributed it to the well known 
hatred of the federalists to Colonel Burr. Be the cause, how- 
ever, what it might, the public feeling was strong in favor of 
Burr, and against the attorney, who was boldly and manfully 
discharging his duty. Judge Innis took time to consider the ap- 
plication, and after two days, overruled the motion. 


Colonel Burr was in Lexington at the time, and was informed 
of the motion made by Daviess, in an incredibly short space of 
time after it was made. He entered the court-house shortly 
after Innis had over-ruled the motion, and addressed the judge 
with a grave and calm dignity of manner, which increased if pos- 
sible the general prepossession in his favor. He spoke of the late 
motion as one which had greatly surprised him, insinuated that 
Daviess had reason to believe that he was absent, upon business 
of a private but pressing nature, which it was well known re- 
quired his immediate attention, that the judge had treated the ap- 
plication as it deserved, but as it might be renewed by the attor- 
ney in his absence, he preferred that the judge should entertain 
the motion now, and he had voluntarily appeared in order to give 
the gentleman an opportunity of proving his charge. Nowise 
disconcerted by the lofty tranquillity of Burr's manner, than 
which nothing could be more imposing, Daviess promptly ac- 
cepted the challenge, and declared himself ready to proceed as 
soon as he could procure the attendance of his witnesses. After 
consulting with the marshal, Daviess announced his opinion that 
his witnesses could attend on the ensuing Wednesday, and with 
the acquiescence of Burr, that day was fixed upon by the court 
for the investigation. 

Burr awaited the day of trial with an easy tranquillity, which 
seemed to fear no danger, and on Wednesday the court-house 
was crowded to suffocation. Daviess upon counting his wit- 
nesses, discovered that Davis Floyd, one of the most important, 
was absent, and with great reluctance, asked a postponement of 
the case. The judge instantly discharged the grand jury. Colo- 
nel Burr then appeared at the bar, accompanied by his counsel, 
Henry Clay and Colonel Allen. The first of these gentlemen 
had emigrated to Kentucky from Virginia, in 1798, and had early 
attracted attention by the boldness with which he had advocated 
a provision in the new constitution for the gradual emancipation 
of slaves in Kentucky, then as now a subject of great delicacy. 
He had already given indications of those extraordinary powers 
of eloquence, and that daring boldness of character, \vhich have 
since shone out with such surpassing splendor. Allen was a 
lawyer of character and celebrity, \vhose early and lamentable 
death, in the war with Great Britain, we shall have occasion 
hereafter to notice. Colonel Burr arose in court, expressed his 
regret that the grand jury had been discharged, and inquired the 
reason. Colonel Daviess replied, and added that Floyd was then 
in Indiana, attending a session of the territorial legislature. 
Burr calmly desired that the cause of the postponement might 
be entered upon the record, as well as the reason why Floyd did 
not attend. He then with great self-possession, and with an air 
of candor difficult to be resisted, addressed the court and crowded 
audience, upon the subject of the accusation. His style was 
without ornament, passion or fervor ; but the spell of a great 
mind, and daring but calm spirit, was felt with singular power 


by all who heard him. He hoped that the good people of Ken- 
tucky would dismiss their apprehensions of danger from him, if 
any such really existed. There was really no ground for them, 
however zealously the attorney might strive to awaken them. 
He was engaged in no project, inimical to the peace or tran- 
quillity of the country, as they would certainly learn, whenever 
the attorney should be ready, which he greatly apprehended would 
never be. In the mean time, although private business urgently 
demanded his presence elsewhere, he felt compelled to give the 
attorney one more opportunity of proving his charge, and would 
patiently await another attack. 

Upon the 25th of November, Colonel Daviess informed the 
court, that Floyd would attend on the 2d December following, 
and another grand jury was summoned to attend on that day. 
Colonel Burr came into court, attended by the same counsel as on 
the former occasion, and coolly awaited the expected attack. 
Daviess, with evident chagrin, again announced that he was not 
ready to proceed, that John Adair had been summoned and was 
not in attendance, and that his testimony was indispensable 
to the prosecution. He again asked a postponement of the case, 
for a few days, and that the grand jury should be kept enpannelled 
until he could compel the attendance of Adair by attachment. 

Burr upon the present occasion remained silent, and entirely 
unmoved by any thing which occurred. Not so his counsel. 
A most animated and impassioned debate sprung up, intermin- 
gled with sharp and flashing personalities between Clay and Da- 
viess. Never did two more illustrious orators encounter each 
other in debate. The enormous mass, which crowded to 
suffocation, the floor, the galleries, the windows, the plat-form 
of the judge, remained still and breathless for hours, while these 
renowned, and immortal champions, stimulated by mutual rivalry 
and each glowing with the ardent conviction of right, encoun- 
tered each other in splendid intellectual combat. Clay had the 
sympathies of the audience on his side, and was the leader of 
the popular party in Kentucky. Daviess was a federalist, and 
was regarded as persecuting an innocent and unfortunate man, 
from motives of political hate. But he was buoyed up by the full 
conviction of Burr's guilt, and the delusion of the people on the 
subject, and the very infatuation which he beheld around him, 
and the smiling security of the traitor, who sat before him, stirred 
his great spirit to one of its most brilliant efforts. All, however, 
was in vain. Judge Tnnis refused to retain the grand jury, unless 
some business was brought before them; and Daviess, in order to 
gain time, sent up to them an indictment against John Adair, 
which w r as pronounced by the grand jury "not a true bill." The 
hour being late, Daviess then moved for an attachment to com- 
pel the attendance of Adair, which was resisted by Burr's coun- 
sel, and refused by the court, on the ground that Adair was not 
in contempt until the day had expired. Upon the motion of Da- 
viess the court then adjourned until the ensuing day. 


In the interval, Daviess had a private interview with the judge, 
and obtained from him an expression of the opinion that it would 
be allowable for him as prosecutor to attend the grand jury in 
their room, and examine the witnesses, in order to explain to 
them the connexion of the detached particles of evidence, 
which his intimate acquaintance with the plot would enable him 
to do, and without which the grand jury would scarcely be able 
to comprehend their bearing. When the court resumed its sit- 
ting on the following morning, Daviess moved to be permitted to 
attend the grand jury in their room. This was resisted by Burr's 
counsel as novel and unprecedented, and refused by the court. 
The grand jury then retired, witnesses were sworn and sent up 
to them, and on the fifth of the month they returned, as Daviess 
had expected " not a true bill." ' In addition to this, the grand 
jury returned into court a written declaration, signed by the 
whole of them, in which from all the evidence before them they 
completely exonerated Burr from any design inimical to the peace 
or well being of the country. Colonel Allen instantly moved the 
court that a copy of the report of the grand jury should be taken 
and published in the newspapers, which was granted. The po- 
pular current ran with great strength in his favor, and the United 
States' attorney for the time was overwhelmed with obloquy. 

The acquittal of Burr was celebrated in Frankfort, by a bril- 
liant ball, numerously attended ; which was followed by another 
ball, given in honor of the baffled attorney, by those friends who 
believed the charge to be just, and that truth for the time had 
been baffled by boldness, eloquence, and delusion. At one of 
these parties the editor of the " Western World," who had boldly 
sounded the alarm, was violently attacked, with the view of driv- 
ing him from the ball room, and was rescued with difficulty. 

These events are given as striking indications of the tone of 
public feeling at the time. Before Mr. Clay took any active part 
as the counsel of Burr, he required of him an explicit disavowal, 
upon his honor, that he was engaged in no design contrary to the 
laws and peace of the country. This pledge was promptly 
given by Burr, in language the most broad, comprehensive and 
particular. " He had no design" he said, " to intermeddle with, or dis- 
turb the tranquillity of the United States, nor its territories, nor any 
part of them. He had neither issued nor signed, nor promised a com- 
mission, to any person, for any purpose. He did not own a single 
musket, nor bayonet, nor any single article of military stores, nor did 
any other person for him, by his authority or knowledge. His views 
had been explained to several distinguished members of the administra- 
tion, were well understood and approved by the government. They were 
such as every man oflwnor, and every good citizen, must approve. He 
considered this declaration proper as well to counteract the chimerical 
tales circulated by the malevolence of his enemies, as to satisfy Mr. Clay, 
that he liad not become the counsel of a man in any way unfriendly to 
tlie laws, the government, or the well being of his country." 

Thoroughly to appreciate the daring coolness and effrontery 


of this extraordinary man, as well as the fearful risk, which he 
faced with such imperturbable self-possession, the reader should 
understand, what was the real attitude in which he then stood. 
This declaration was made on the 1st December, 1806, at Frank- 
fort. On the 29th of July preceding, he had written to Wilkin- 
son, " I have obtained funds, and have actually commenced the 
enterprise. Detachments from different points and on different 
pretences will rendezvous on the Ohio on the 1st November. 
Every thing internal and external favors views . Al- 
ready are orders given to contractors to forward six months provi- 
sions to any point Wilkinson may name. The project is brought 
to the point so long desired. Burr guarantees the result with his 
life and honor, with the lives, the fortunes, of hundreds the best 
blood of the country. Wilkinson shall be second only to Burr. 
Wilkinson shall dictate the rank of his officers. Burr's plan of 
operations is to move down rapidly from the Falls by the 15th 
November, with the first five or ten hundred men, in light boats 
now constructing, to be at Natchez between the 5th and 15th 
of December, there to meet Wilkinson, $$^ there to determine, 
whether it will be expedient in the first instance, to SEIZE on, or 
pass by Baton Rouge ! !" 

Before the date of this letter he had fully unfolded his project 
to General Eaton, which was to revolutionize the western coun- 
try, establish an empire, with New Orleans as the capital, and 
himself the chief. On the 24th July, 1806, General Dayton, one 
of Burr's firmest adherents, wrote to General Wilkinson in cy- 
pher, "Are you ready? Are your numerous associates ready? 
Wealth and Glory! Louisiana and Mexico!!" So much for 
Burr's intentions. Now for the risk of detection, which he 
braved with such undaunted composure. 

On the 25th of November, one week before his declaration to 
Mr. Clay, President Jefferson issued his proclamation, denouncing 
the enterprise, and warning the west against it. On the 1st of 
December, a messenger from the President arrived at the seat of 
government of Ohio, and instantly procured the passage of a law 
by which ten of Colonel Burr's boats, laden with provisions and 
military stores, were seized on the Muskingum, before they 
could reach the Ohio. At the very moment that he appeared in 
court, an armed force in his service occupied Blannerhasset's 
island, and boats laden with provisions and military stores, were 
commencing their voyage down the river, and passed Louisville, 
on the 16th of December. Scarcely was the grand jury dis- 
charged, and the ball which celebrated his acquittal, concluded, 
when the President's proclamation reached Kentucky, and a law 
was passed in hot haste, for seizing the boats which had escaped 
the militia of Ohio, and were then descending the river. Burr had 
left Frankfort about the 7th, and had gone to Nashville. The 
conclusion of his enterprise belongs to the history of the United 
States. But that portion of the drama which was enacted in 
Kentucky has been detailed with some minuteness, as affording 


a rich and rare example, of cool and calculating impudence, and 
of truth, loyalty and eloquence most signally baffled and put to 
shame, by the consummate art and self-possession, of this daring 

The Kentucky legislature assembled, and the petition for an 
inquiry into the conduct of Sebastian was presented. A vigorous 
effort was made to stifle the inquiry, but in vain. The film had 
fallen from the public eye, and the people were not to be deluded 
twice, in such rapid succession. The inquiry was sturdily 
pressed. Sebastian resigned his office, hoping thus to stifle 
further examination; but the legislature refused to notice his re- 
signation, and the examination proceeded. Judge Innis was the 
principal witness, and apparently with great reluctance disclosed 
what has already been detailed ' as to the secret intrigue with 
Power. Other evidence made it evident, that he had enjoyed a 
pension of two thousand dollars per annum, from Spain, since 
1795. The public mind was violently agitated, by the sudden 
disclosure of these plots, and conspiracies, and in the minds of 
many Judge Innis was deeply implicated. Being a judge of the 
federal court, however, the legislature of Kentucky had no 
authority to investigate his conduct. At the succeeding session, 
however, it passed a resolution recommending an inquiry into the 
conduct of the judge, by the Congress of the United States, which 
was had, and resulted in his acquittal. 

The foreign relations of the United States were now becom- 
ing critical. The attack of the English frigate Leopard, upon 
the Chesapeake, exasperated the American people almost beyond 
control, and was nowhere more fiercely resented than in Ken- 
tucky. Mr. Madison succeeded Mr. Jefferson, in 1808, and Gen- 
eral Scott was elected governor of Kentucky. The breach be- 
tween the United States and Great Britain grew daily wider, and 
Kentucky became deeply engrossed in national politics. Great 
numbers of resolutions, replete with patriotism, and not a little 
marked by passion, were adopted by her legislature. 

The only act of a purely domestic nature which deserves at- 
tention, is the charter of the Bank of Kentucky, with a capital 
of $1,000,000, which was passed at the session of 1807. In the 
session of 1808-9, the limitation in actions of ejectment, was 
changed from twenty to seven years, where the defendant actu- 
ally resided upon the land, and claimed under an adverse entry 
or patent, and the new limitation was made available in all suits 
at law, or in equity for the recovery of land. This celebrated 
act has quieted all litigation upon original conflicting claims, and 
was introduced by Humphrey Marshall. 

No circumstances of domestic interest claim the attention of 
the historian, in a brief outline like the present, until the war 
which broke out between the United States and Great Britain in 
1812. The general history of that war belongs to the historian 
of the United States, but no history of Kentucky, however brief 
and general, can pass unnoticed, those stirring incidents in the 


north-west and south-west, in which Kentucky acted so promi- 
nent a part. The principal causes of the war should also be 
briefly and generally adverted to. As has been repeatedly stated, 
the angry feelings occasioned by the war of Independence, were 
not quieted by the peace of 1783. Mortification and resentment 
rankled in the breasts of the parties long after the war had ter- 
minated, and the convulsions of the French revolution so vio- 
lently agitated the civilized world, that it became very difficult 
for a nation like the United States to remain undisturbed by the 
terrible struggle, of which the earth and the ocean were made 
the theatre. 

Being the second maritime power in the world, the United 
States became the carrier on the ocean, of a large portion of the 
commerce of Europe. Many English seamen, tempted by the 
high wages given by American merchants, were employed in our 
commercial marine ; and England claimed and exercised the right 
of impressing her own seamen wherever they might be found. 
The enormous navy which she maintained, required to be sup- 
ported by constant impressment; and under color of seizing her 
own citizens, she was constantly in the habit of stopping Ameri- 
can merchantmen, and selecting from the crew such men, as her 
subordinate officers chose to consider English, Irish or Scotch, 
and who were, frequently, native American citizens. Redress 
could seldom be obtained, and never except after interminable 
delay and vexation. All Americans upon the ocean thus became 
liable to be seized at the discretion of any British officer, and 
forced, under the discipline of the lash, to waste their lives in the 
most unhealthy climates, and in the most degraded stations. 
This grievance was the subject of protracted and bitter remon- 
strance, from the administration of Washington to the opening 
of the war; but Great Britain constantly refused to abandon the 
right, or rather the exercise of the power. In truth her extraor- 
dinary efforts by land and sea, called for all the resources of men 
and money, which could be made available, in any part of the 
world ; and the sixty thousand splendid and unequaled seamen, 
which manned the American marine, totally unprotected, save by 
diplomatic remonstrance, afforded too rich a resource to be aban- 

To the embittering grievance of impressment, was added in 
1806 and 1807, a series of paper blockades, by means of which, 
not only American seamen, but American merchandize afloat, 
became subject to seizure and confiscation upon the high seas, 
under circumstances, which left the American government no 
choice but to abandon the ocean entirely, or submit to a whole- 
sale plunder upon the seas, destructive to their prosperity, and 
intolerable to national pride. By these orders in council the whole 
French empire, with its allies and dependencies, then embracing 
nearly all of Europe, were declared in a state of blockade. Any 
American vessel bound to, or returning from any port in any of 
these countries, without first stopping at an English port and ob- 


taining a license to prosecute the voyage, was declared a lawful 
prize. This was in retaliation of Napoleon's Berlin and Milan de- 
crees, wherein he had declared the British islands, their depen- 
dencies and allies in a state of blockade, and had rendered every 
vessel liable to confiscation, which either touched at a British 
port, or was laden in whole or in part with British produce. This 
decree, however, was in retaliation of a previous decree, passed 
by the English government in 1806, whereby the whole imperial 
coast, from Brest to the Elbe, was declared in a state of blockade. 

All these decrees were haughty and high handed violations of 
national law, which allows of no mere paper blockades, and re- 
quires the presence of a sufficient force, to render them legal. 
Between these haughty belligerents, no American vessel could be 
free from liability to confiscation. If they were bound on a 
voyage to any European port, they must touch at an English 
port, and obtain a license, or become a lawful prize to some one 
of the thousand British cruisers which vexed the ocean. If they 
touched at an English port, or were laden in whole or in part with 
British merchandise, they were confiscated by the imperial edict, 
as soon as they reached a continental port. Both decrees were 
equally hostile to American commerce; but the English had set 
the first example, and the practical operation of their orders in 
council was far more destructive than Napoleon's decree. One 
thousand American vessels, richly laden, became the prize of the 
British cruisers ; irritating cases of impressment were constantly 
occurring; the language of American diplomacy became daily more 
angry and impatient, that of England daily more cold and 
haughty, and in June, 1812, the American Congress declared war. 

By engaging in war, at that time, the United States unavoida- 
bly became the ally of Napoleon Bonaparte, who at that time 
governed Europe with a rod of iron, repressing all freedom, and 
grinding the hearts of the people > by a system of plunder, and 
violence, which had already begun to react. The federalists, 
since the days of Washington, had regarded the French revolu- 
tion with aversion, and looked upon Bonaparte with undisguised 
horror. The great strength of this party lay in the New Eng- 
land States, where the strict religious principles of the Old Puri- 
tans had taken deep root, and where revolutionary France was 
regarded as a power equally hostile to religion, to freedom and 
morality. They looked upon the war with deep aversion, and 
opposed it by all means in their power. Such is the force of 
passion, that this party, composed perhaps of the great mass of 
intelligence and property, and embracing a majority of the reli- 
gious and moral strength of the country, were so far blinded by 
their hatred to Napoleon, and French principles, as to become al- 
most insensible to the equally lawless, and intolerable despotism, 
with which Great Britain scourged the ocean. While it cannot 
be denied that the love of the democratic party for France, which 
originally sprung from gratitude, and a love of liberty, was so far 
blind and perverted, that they heartily sympathised with Napo- 


leon, and rejoiced in his triumphs. Both claimed to be entirely 
independent and American, yet the affections of the one leaned 
strongly to England, and those of the other to France. 

Our country was then a second rate power. England and 
France were the giant champions of the hostile principles, which 
warred with each other for twenty-five years, and the whole civi- 
lized world ranged themselves under one or the other of the hos- 
tile banners. England was the champion of the ancient institu- 
tions of Europe, which consisted of religion intimately inter- 
woven with aristocracy. France attacked both, with a fury 
which strengthened each by the alliance of the other. Both 
united were far too strong for the most virtuous democracy 
which has ever yet existed; far less could they be overthrown by a 
democracy, trampling upon all freedom, and reveling in universal 
violence and plunder. He who understands mankind, will not 
wonder that the great mass of property and religion throughout 
the world, hated France, and sided with England ; nor will he be 
surprised that the ardent passions which originally embraced the 
French cause, from gratitude and sympathy with freedom, should 
still cling to their first love, after the original character of the 
contest had gradually changed, and the milk-white lamb of 1789, 
struggling for life against despotism, had been transformed into 
the ten-horned monster of 1812, trampling under foot the liber- 
ties of the world. 

Under this state of parties the war commenced. In Kentucky 
the federal party was so extremely weak, and the popular pas- 
sion for the war blazed with such fury, that scarcely any opposi- 
tion was perceptible. But in the New England States, where it 
predominated, it displayed itself with a strength and fervor, 
which seriously embarrassed the government, and has excited 
against the party generally, a degree of odium from which it 
will not easily recover. 

The first events of the war, upon land, were such as might 
naturally be expected, from a nation essentially pacific, mercan- 
tile and agricultural. An invasion of Upper Canada by Hull, 
resulted in the surrender of his army, and the loss of the whole 
territory of Michigan. An attempt to invade Canada upon the 
Niagara frontier, resulted in a total failure, attended with some 
disgrace and an immense clamor. By the loss of Michigan, all 
American control over the numerous Indian tribes of the north- 
west, was lost, and they poured down, from the great lakes, upon 
our extended frontier, in great numbers. 

The war spirit in Kentucky blazed forth with unprecedented 
vigor. Seven thousand volunteers at once offered their services 
to the government, and fifteen hundred were on the march for 
Detroit, when the intelligence of Hull's surrender induced them 
to halt. This disastrous news was received with a burst of indig- 
nant fury, which no other event has ever excited in Kentucky. 
The author of this sketch was then a child, and well recollects 
hearing the news discussed by a company of married ladies, who 


unanimously pronounced Hull a traitor, and with great vehem- 
ence declared that he ought to be gibbeted, or crucified ordinary 
hanging being far too mild a punishment for so monstrous a 

The military ardor of the men seemed rather increased than 
diminished by the disaster, and a call of the governor for fifteen 
hundred volunteers, to march against the Indian villages of 
northern Illinois, was answered by more than two thousand vol- 
unteers, who assembled at Louisville under General Hopkins, 
and marched into the Indian country, until their provisions be- 
came scarce, and their ardor had become cooled by the protracted 
fatigue and hardships to which they were exposed, when, without 
having encountered the enemy, they suddenly abandoned their 
general and returned home, in defiance of all remonstrances. 

The residue of the Kentucky volunteers were placed under the 
orders of General Harrison, the governor of the Indiana territory, 
and since elected to the presidency. This gentleman had long 
been governor of Indiana, and in the preceding year had fought 
a bloody battle, at Tippecanoe, with the Indians, in which the 
brave and eloquent Daviess had lost his life. The last act of 
Governor Scott's administration, was to confer upon him the 
rank of major general in the Kentucky militia, and shortly after 
the same rank was given him by the President, in the regular 
service, with the chief command in the north-west. The plan 
of the campaign, as laid at Washington city, was to assemble 
under this general, the militia of Ohio, Kentucky, Virginia, and 
Pennsylvania, with such regular troops as could be raised, to re- 
take Detroit, overawe the north-western tribes, and conquer 
Upper Canada. 

The secretary of war evidently regarded this as a simple and 
easy undertaking, and the autumn and winter of 1812-13 was 
spent in ill-digested, awkward and unsuccessful efforts to carry 
out this plan. The face of the country presented obstacles to 
the march of an army, with the necessary baggage and supplies, 
which seem to have been totally overlooked by the secretary. 
The country to be traversed was little better than a wilderness of 
swamps and marshes, which, in the rainy season, were almost 
impassable. The command of the lake, so essential to a well 
digested plan, was entirely overlooked, and was in the posses- 
sion of the enemy. Volunteers were furnished in great numbers, 
and muskets in abundance, but the commissariat's and quarter- 
master's departments were in a state of total anarchy. The men 
were full of courage, and ardently desired to fight; the govern- 
ment was sincerely anxious to furnish them with what was ne- 
cessary; but every department was raw, inexperienced, and inef- 
ficient. Delays, disappointments, and blunders without number 
occurred. The ardor of the volunteers expended itself in inglo- 
rious struggles with hunger, disease, and intolerable hardships 
and privations, and one of the finest of the Kentucky regiments, 
commanded by the brave and unfortunate Allen, was with much 


difficulty restrained from disbanding and returning home. The 
money expended in miserable and abortive efforts to drag pro- 
visions and ammunition through a marshy wilderness of nearly 
two hundred miles, would have nearly equipped a fleet sufficient 
to maintain the command of the lake, and the sums wasted 
in the quartermaster's department, would nearly have furnished 
transports for a sufficient force to have seized Maiden. But the 
secretary had planned the campaign as if this swampy wilder- 
ness was a high and healthy region, traversed thickly by the best 
turnpike roads, and acted as if totally ignorant that such a body 
of water as lake Erie was in existence. 

After a series of plans hastily conceived, partially executed, 
and then as hastily abandoned, after forced marches undertaken 
through horrible roads, without adequate object, and terminating 
in nothing, sometimes upon half rations, and a part of the time 
upon no rations at all, the army at length found itself about the 
1st of January, with the left wing at fort Defiance under General 
Winchester, and the right at Upper Sandusky under Harrison. 
The left wing was composed almost entirely of Kentucky volun- 
teers, and the right of militia from Ohio, Pennsylvania and Vir- 
ginia. The immediate object was to advance to the Rapids, and 
thence to make a march upon Detroit. The left wing took the 
lead, and the Kentuckians, with Wells' regiment of regulars, 
reached the Rapids on the 10th. Here they halted, and by order 
were to wait the arrival of Harrison. 

On the 14th, however, they received intelligence that two com- 
panies of Canadian militia and about two hundred Indians were 
at Frenchtown on the river Raisin, within striking distance, and 
instantly a burning thirst for battle, seized both officers and sol- 
diers. Frenchtown was about thirty-eight miles from the Rapids, 
and only eighteen miles from the British garrison of Maiden. 
The lake was frozen hard, and the march over the ice from Mai- 
den could be made in a few hours. The British could in a few 
hours throw two thousand men upon Frenchtown, and no sup- 
port was nearer than Upper Sandusky, at least five days march 
distant. Yet a detachment of nine hundred and ninety Ken- 
tucky militia, was thrust forward, within the very jaws of the 
British garrison, to strike at this detachment of Indians and 
Canadians. Colonel Lewis commanded the detachment, and un- 
der him were Colonel Allen, Majors Graves and Madison. A 
forced march within less than two days brought them in view of 
the enemy, whom they attacked with the greatest bravery; Major 
Reynolds commanded the British, and made a spirited defence, 
from the picketed enclosures and houses near the village, but 
was driven from all his defences, under a continual charge, for 
more than two miles, with some loss. 

This battle was fought on the 18th January. Prompt intelligence 
of the action was sent to General Winchester, on the night after 
the battle, which reached him on the morning of the 19th. On that 
evening he commenced his inarch with a reinforcement of two 


hundred and fifty regulars under Colonel Wells, leaving three hun- 
dred men to guard the camp. On the evening of the 20th he 
reached Frenchtown, and found Colonel Lewis still in possession 
of the town, and encamped within a large picketed enclosure, 
which afforded an excellent protection against musketry, but none 
against artillery. There was room within the enclosure to the left 
of Colonel Lewis, for the whole of the regulars ; but Winchester 
encamped in open ground on the right, having his right flank 
within musket shot of some detached houses and enclosures which 
were not occupied. On the 21st all remained quiet, and the gen- 
eral determined on the following day, to throw up some works 
for the protection of the regulars, declining to avail himself of 
the picketing on the left of Lewis, from an absurd regard to mili- 
tary etiquette, which entitled regulars to the post of honor on the 

On the evening of the 21st, he learned that a large force was 
at Maiden, apparently preparing for a march, yet he sottishly 
slighted the intelligence, and on that evening gave permission to 
Colonel Wells to return to the Rapids, and fixed his own head- 
quarters nearly a mile from the camp, at the house of Colonel 
Navarre. The night was intensely cold, and no picket was 
posted in advance, upon the road by which the enemy might be 
expected. At day-light on the morning of the 22d the camp was 
suddenly attacked by about two thousand British and Indians, in 
two divisions. The British regulars under Proctor advanced 
against the picketing with a rapid and firm step, and under a 
heavy fire of cannon and musketry, and were received by the 
Kentuckians, with a torrent of fire, which did vast execution. 
Thirty of the British regulars fell dead within musket shot of the 
lines, and three times that number of wounded were borne to the 
rear. The survivors retreated in great disorder, and contented 
themselves with a heavy cannonade from six field pieces, against 
the picketing. 

In the meantime, the Indians and Canadians attacked Wells' 
regiment, encamped in the open ground, with savage yells, and 
a slaughtering fire, from the cover of the houses, and enclosures 
which flanked them. After a brief action of only a few minutes, 
this regiment gave way in total confusion. Winchester came up 
from his distant quarters in time to witness the flight of this 
regiment, and strove to rally it within cover of the picketing oc- 
cupied by the Kentuckians ; but the panic was so complete that 
no order could be heard, and these unhappy men fled through a 
deep snow along the road by which they had advanced from the 
Rapids, thirty-six hours before. They were pursued by four times 
their number of Indians, and an indiscriminate and almost total 
butchery ensued. Colonels Allen and Lewis left the picketing, 
and exerted themselves bravely, to rally and re-form the fugi- 
tives, but Allen was killed and Lewis taken, as was also the com- 
mander-in-chief. Many Kentuckians of every grade united in 
the effort to rally the fugitives, and bring them within the shelter 


of the picketing, among whom were Woolfolk, Simpson and 
Meade, all of whom were killed. Scarcely a man of the fugi- 
tives escaped death or captivity, and not a Kentuckian who had 
sallied from the picketing, returned. While this dreadful 
butchery was enacted within sight and hearing of both armies, 
the Kentuckians, now commanded by Majors Madison and Graves, 
remained within their enclosure, and for four hours kept the 
enemy at bay. During this time six field pieces played upon 
them incessantly, from various positions, and at length their am- 
munition was reduced to a single keg of cartridges. Proctor then 
summoned them, through General Winchester, to surrender, 
offering honorable conditions, and ample protection to the 
wounded. After considerable parley, the terms were accepted, 
and the whole detachment became prisoners of war. The con- 
ditions were faithfully kept, so far as the officers and men, who 
were unhurt, was concerned, but inhumanly violated with regard 
to the wounded. These were left in Frenchtown, without a guard, 
as had been stipulated, under the care of the American surgeons, 
attended by a single British officer and a few interpreters. A 
number of drunken Indians entered the town on the morning 
after the battle, and the helpless wounded were murdered with 
circumstances of shocking barbarity. The wounded officers, 
Major Graves, Captains Hart and Hickman, were tomahawked, 
and two houses crowded with wounded officers and men, were 
set on fire, and consumed, with their helpless inmates. This 
dreadful crime is chargeable to the gross negligence, if not wilful 
connivance of Proctor, and is an indelible stain upon the honor 
of the British arms. 

The brave and veteran Shelby had succeeded Scott as governor 
of Kentucky, and upon the intelligence of the dreadful disaster at 
Raisin, was authorized, and requested by the legislature of Ken- 
tucky, to take the field in person, at the head of the reinforce- 
ments which volunteered their services in profusion, to supply the 
places of their countrymen who had fallen, or been led into cap- 
tivity. Four regiments instantly tendered their services, com- 
manded by the colonels, Dudley, Bos well, Cox and Caldwell; the 
whole forming a strong brigade under General Clay. 

A portion of this force was pushed forward by forced marches 
to reinforce Harrison, who was now nearly destitute of troops 
(their time of service having expired), and was lying at the 
Rapids, exposed to a coup de main, from the enemy who lay 
within striking distance at Maiden, and might by a little activity, 
repeat the terrible blow of the Raisin, upon the banks of the 
Maumee. The war had not lasted six months, there was but one 
regular British regiment in Upper Canada, and the United States 
had already lost the whole territory of Michigan, and instead of 
taking the offensive, was occupying a weak defensive position, 
within her own territory, the enemy being strongest upon the 
point of operations, and having complete command of the lake. 

Harrison employed himself during the winter in fortifying his 


position below the Rapids, which was called camp Meigs, in honor 
of Governor Meigs, of Ohio. It consisted of an area of about 
seven acres, enclosed by strong pickets, deeply sunk in the 
ground, and with block houses at the angles. It could not resist 
regular approaches, or heavy artillery, but was available against 
light artillery and sudden attacks, and enabled him to await the 
arrival of reinforcements. Proctor gave him ample time to re- 
ceive reinforcements and strengthen himself by fortifications, 
making no movement of consequence until late in April, although 
able at any time to throw a superior force upon his adversary. 

On the 12th of April, the advanced guard of the Kentucky 
reinforcement reached camp Meigs, and on the 26th of that 
month the British flotilla, having on board battering cannon, and 
abundant supplies for a siege, appeared upon the lake at the 
mouth of Maumee river. Shortly afterwards his gun boats as- 
cended the river to within two miles of the fort, the cannon were 
disembarked, and batteries were thrown up, both above and 
below the fort. A vast force of Indians, under the celebrated 
Tecumseh, attended the British army, and cut off communication 
with the interior. A heavy fire was opened from the British bat- 
teries on the 1st of May, which was returned at intervals from 
the fort, their supply of cannon balls being very limited, and 
their twelve pounders being principally supplied with balls from 
the enemy. 

On the 4th of May, General Clay, with the residue of the Ken- 
tucky brigade, had reached fort Defiance. The present General 
Leslie Combs, of Lexington, then a captain, gallantly volunteered 
to carry to the garrison the news of Clay's approach, and at the 
head of five men, attempted to descend the river in a canoe, for 
that purpose. But the swarms of Indians who infested the woods 
defeated the attempt, and after the loss of nearly all his men, he 
was compelled to return. Lieutenant David Trimble had better 
success, and Harrison was informed that Clay's brigade was de- 
scending the river from fort Defiance to his aid, and would proba- 
bly arrive on the 5th at daylight. General Harrison then sent 
orders to Clay by captain Hamilton, who ascended the river in a 
canoe, to land eight hundred men upon the northern shore, oppo- 
site the fort, to carry the British batteries, there placed, to spike 
the cannon and destroy the carriages, after which they were im- 
mediately to regain their boats and cross over to the fort. The 
residue of the brigade was ordered to land upon the southern 
shore, and fight their way through the Indians to the fort. 

Nothing was more easy than the execution of these orders, 
had the troops been well drilled, and had the object of Harrison, 
which was simply to silence the batteries, been distinctly under- 
stood by the officers. The batteries were slightly guarded, the 
mass of British infantry was in the camp two miles below, and 
the Indian force was on the opposite side of the river. Had the 
order been given to a captain and one hundred regulars, it would 
probably have been successfully executed. Clay received the 


order from Hamilton, and directed him to communicate it to 
Colonel Dudley, who was charged with its execution. Dudley 
received the order, and landed with the troops in the first twelve 
boats, upon the northern shore as directed. He does not seem to 
have thoroughly understood the object of Harrison, and he never 
communicated to his subordinates the precise nature of his orders. 
The great mass knew nothing more, than they were to fight an 
enemy on the northern shore, and were totally ignorant that 
when the cannon were spiked and the carriages destroyed, their 
object was accomplished. They accordingly rushed upon the 
batteries, which w r ere abandoned in disorder by the artillerymen, 
and the real object of the expedition was in a moment accom- 
plished. A small force of Indians and Canadians, however, 
showed themselves upon the skirts of the wood, and opened a 
straggling fire, which was eagerly returned by the Kentuckians, 
and the retreating enemy was hotly followed up, in considerable 
disorder, for nearly two miles. The detachment was dispersed in 
small parties, no general command was retained over it, and no 
one seems to have understood, that they were expected to retreat 
rapidly to their boats as soon as the cannon were spiked. The 
consequences were such as might have been predicted. Proctor 
came up with a British force and intercepted their retreat, the In- 
dians crossed over in great numbers and reinforced the retreat- 
ing party, which had decoyed the Kentuckians into the woods, 
and the whole detachment, with the exception of about one 
hundred and fifty men, was killed or taken. The prisoners were 
taken within the walls of the old British fort, below, under a 
very slender guard, and while huddled together in this place, the 
Indians amused themselves in shooting them down and scalping 
them. This cruel sport continued for some time, until it was in- 
terrupted by the arrival of Tecumseh at full gallop, who instantly 
and with great indignation, put a stop to the massacre. A sortie 
was made about the same time from the fort, against a battery 
on the southern shore of the river, in which a company of Ken- 
tucky militia brilliantly distinguished themselves, but sustained 
great loss. 

On the whole, the 5th of May was disastrous to the American 
army. The movement on the northern bank was too critical and 
delicate to be performed by a corps of undisciplined volunteers, 
unless under the most precise instructions, thoroughly under- 
stood, by officers and men. The force was far too great for the 
object contemplated, which might have been accomplished by one 
fourth of the number, and was too small to defend itself against 
a force which was within forty minutes' march of the batteries, 
and was sure to be aroused, if there was the least delay. The 
news of the capture of fort George by General Dearborn, how- 
ever, alarmed Proctor, and the little effect produced by his fire, 
together with the large force which had reinforced Harrison, 
induced him to abandon the siege, and return to Maiden. The 
force under Proctor, including Indians, was probably 3200 men. 


Harrison's force exclusive of Clay's reinforcement was about 1200, 
and including Clay's brigade about 2500 rank and file fit for duty. 

Colonel Richard M. Johnson, then a member of Congress, had 
early in the spring, raised a regiment of mounted gunmen, who 
now joined General Harrison, and were engaged during the early 
part of the summer in distant, harassing, and fruitless expedi- 
tions against the Indian villages of the north-west. Proctor re- 
mained quiet at Maiden, organizing an Indian force for a second 
invasion of Ohio. Harrison remained at Upper Sandusky, busily 
engaged in preparing for decisive operations in the fall. 

The secretary had now practically learned the importance of 
commanding lake Erie. Lieutenant Perry of the navy, had been 
detached, from the squadron under command of Chauncey on 
lake Ontario, to superintend the- equipment of a fleet on lake 
Erie, and take the command of it when ready for service. The 
plan of the present campaign, was sensible and military. It 
was simply to obtain command of the lake, and by means of 
a cheap and rapid water communication, to pour a superior force 
upon Upper Canada, and finish the war in the north-west by a 
single blow. All depended upon the result of the naval battle, 
to be fought with ships, which in June, existed in the shape of 
green timber growing upon the shore of lake Erie. Money 
however was lavishly, and now wisely expended, and under the 
active exertions of Perry, two brigs of twenty guns each, and 
seven smaller vessels, by the middle of summer began to assume 
the appearance of a fleet. All difficulties both of building and 
launching, were successfully overcome, and by the close of sum- 
mer, Perry was ready to engage the enemy. 

In the meantime Harrison had called upon the veteran Shelby, 
for a force not exceeding two thousand infantry. The governor 
instantly issued a proclamation, inviting volunteers to meet him 
at Newport, and announcing that he would lead them in person 
against the enemy. Four thousand mounted volunteers res- 
ponded to the call, who after some hesitation were accepted by 
Harrison, and proceeded without delay to the scene of operations. 

In the meantime a second feeble and abortive effort was made 
by Proctor to take camp Meigs, which failed disgracefully, after 
vast expense had been incurred in collecting stores and Indian 
auxiliaries, and the result of which displayed that imbecility 
had passed over to the enemy, and that energy and wisdom were 
beginning to prevail in the American conduct of affairs. Having 
failed to make any impression upon camp Meigs, Proctor at- 
tempted to carry fort Stephenson, a small picketed stockade, gar- 
risoned by Colonel Croghan of Kentucky with one hundred and 
fifty men, and so totally indefensible that Harrison had ordered 
Croghan to evacuate it, and rejoin the main army. It was com- 
pletely invested, however, before these orders could be obeyed, 
and successfully resisted the attack of fifteen hundred men. Only 
one assault was attempted, which was bravely repulsed with a 
slaughter which induced Proctor hastily to decamp and return to 


Maiden, after one of the feeblest and most disgraceful expedi- 
tions, which has ever disgraced the British arms. 

The crisis of the campaign had now arrived, and on the morn- 
ing of the 10th of September, the flotilla of lieutenant Perry en- 
gaged the British fleet under captain Barclay, a British officer 
of great experience, who had fought under Nelson at Trafalgar. 
The number of men in the respective squadrons was nearly equal; 
the British vessels carried sixty-three guns, and the American 
fifty-four; the British had six vessels, and the American nine. But 
seven of the American vessels were mere gun boats, carrying 
most of them only one gun, and none of them more than three, 
while the remaining two, named the Lawrence and Niagara, 
carried twenty guns each. A great proportion of the British 
armament consisted of long guns, while the two American brigs 
were. armed almost exclusively with carronades. If the British 
official report is to be trusted, however, the weight of metal in a 
close action would be immensely in favor of the American fleet, 
as most of their guns were thirty-two and twenty-four pounders, 
while the great majority of the British guns, were nine, six 
and four pounders, and only a few as high as twenty-four and 
eighteen. A detachment of one hundred and fifty of the Ken- 
tucky volunteers served on board of Perry's fleet as marines, and 
upon this new element acquitted themselves with the greatest 

The action began between eleven and twelve o'clock, with 
scarcely a breath of air to stir the bosom of the lake. Perry in 
the Lawrence, accompanied by two of the small vessels, bore 
down upon the enemy, but was not closely followed by lieuten- 
ant Elliot in the Niagara, and the rest of the small vessels. For 
two hours Perry remained exposed to the fire of the whole Brit- 
ish fleet, by which his vessel was cut to pieces, and three-fourths 
of his crew killed and wounded. Elliot during this time was 
never within less than half a mile of the enemy, and the residue 
of the fleet was not nearer than a mile and a half, save the two 
small vessels which accompanied him. By two o'clock Perry's 
vessel was totally disabled, but the rest of his fleet was but little 
injured. The lake was so smooth, that the distant gun boats, 
from their long twenty-four and thirty-two pounders, threw their 
shot with great precision, and had made themselves felt in the 
action ; but Elliot's brig, which formed so essential a part of the 
force, and which was armed almost exclusively with carronades 
had as yet annoyed the enemy but little, and had fought princi- 
pally with two twelve pounders, the only long guns she had. At 
two o'clock, Perry left the Lawrence under command of her lieu- 
tenant, and in an open boat, rowed to the Niagara. Upon 
Perry's expressing dissatisfaction at the manner in which the 
gun boats were managed, Elliot volunteered to bring them up. 
He left the Niagara in a boat for that purpose, and passed swiftly 
down the line, ordering them to cease firing, and by the combined 
use of their sweeps and sails, to press forward into close action. 


Instantly a new impulse was given to the whole line. The 
well known signal for close action, was now seen flying from the 
Niagara, and after a delay of fifteen minutes, to enable the gun 
boats to come up, Perry bore down upon the British line, passed 
through it, and delivered a raking fire of grape and cannister, 
from both broadsides, at half pistol shot distance. The dreadful 
cries from the Queen Charlotte and Lady Prevost, which followed 
this close and murderous discharge, announced the fatal accuracy 
with which it had been delivered. The gun boats were now 
within pistol shot, and a tremendous cannonade, accompanied by 
the shrill clear notes of many bugles from the English vessels, 
announced that they expected to be boarded, and were summon- 
ing their boarders to repel the anticipated assault. No boarding, 
however, was attempted. The superior weight of the American 
mettle, was now telling, in close fight, when the full power of 
their carronades was felt, and in fifteen minutes the enemy sur- 
rendered, with the exception of two of their smallest vessels, 
which attempted to escape. The attempt proved fruitless, and 
the whole fleet of the enemy became the prize of the captors. 
When the smoke cleared away, so that the hostile fleets could 
be distinctly seen, they were found intermingled, within half pis- 
tol shot. The signal for close action was still flying from the 
mast head of the American commodore, and the small vessels 
were still sternly wearing their answering flag of intelligence 
and obedience. The loss on both sides, owing to the dreadful 
slaughter on board the Lawrence, was nearly equal. The Ameri- 
can loss was twenty-seven killed and ninety-six wounded, con- 
siderably more than half of which was sustained by the crew of 
the Lawrence. 

This victory, never surpassed in splendor, however it may have 
been in magnitude, was decisive of the fate of the campaign. 
Tt gave to Harrison the complete command of the lake, and the 
power of throwing an overwhelming force into the rear of 
Proctor, if he should attempt to maintain his position at Detroit 
and Maiden. Such, however, was by no means his intention. 
No sooner did he learn that Harrison, at the head of a small 
regular force, and the powerful reinforcement of Kentuckians 
under Shelby, was crossing the lake, and about to operate upon 
his rear, than he abandoned his position with great precipitation, 
and commenced a rapid retreat, in the first stages of which he 
was deserted by more than one half of his Indian auxiliaries. 
The gallant Tecumseh, at the head of more than a thousand war- 
riors, however, remained faithful in adversity, and accompanied 
him, as is believed under a promise that the first favorable 
ground should be selected for a battle. No time was lost in avail- 
ing himself of his complete command of the lake. The horses 
of the Kentuckians were left upon the American shore, under a 
guard reluctantly draughted for that indispensable but inglorious 
service, and enclosed within an ample grazing ground, while 
their comrades were joyfully wafted to the hostile shore, where 


they debarked on the 27th of September. Proctor had retreated 
on the 24th of the same month. 

After detaching General McArthur to resume possession of De- 
troit, which had now been under British dominion for thirteen 
months, General Harrison, at the head of the Kentucky infantry, 
about one hundred and twenty regulars, and Colonel Johnson's 
regiment of mounted gunmen, commenced pursuit of Proctor. 
He came up with him on the 5th of October, upon the banks of 
the Thames, near the old Moravian village, where a decisive bat- 
tle was fought. The ground occupied by the British, was the 
river bottom, about three hundred yards wide, and thickly set with 
beech trees. Their left rested upon the river and their right upon 
a swamp, which ran parallel to the river, and covered their right 
flank. Beyond this swamp their line was prolonged by their 
Indian allies under Tecumseh. There were probably about five 
hundred British regulars, rank and file, upon the ground, and from 
1000 to 1500 Indians. The force of Harrison, including the hand- 
ful of regulars and friendly Indians, was probably 3500 men. 
The English, however, presented a narrow front, and were well 
secured upon each flank, and the ground was extremely favora- 
ble to their Indian allies. Harrison's line of battle was formed of 
five brigades of Kentucky volunteers, under the generals Trotter, 
King, Chiles, Allen and Caldwell, the three first composing the 
division of Major General Henry; the two last commanded by 
Major General Desha. The division of Henry was formed in 
three lines, fronting the British regulars that of Desha was 
formed at right angles to Henry facing the swamp, from which 
the Indian torrent was expected to burst. The venerable Shelby 
took his station at the point where the lines intersected. Colonel 
Johnson's regiment had originally been intended to turn the flank 
of the Indians, and operate in the rear, as in Wayne's battle, but 
General Harrison was informed by Colonel Wood, of the engi- 
neers, that the British regulars were deployed as skirmishers in 
loose order, and he instantly determined to charge them with 
the mounted gun men. 

Colonel Johnson, finding that the whole of his regiment could 
not act with effect upon the English troops, directed his brother 
to charge the English with one battalion, while he charged the In- 
dians with the other. The charge upon the British was completely 
successful, and the whole regiment threw down their arms and 
surrendered. The charge upon the Indians, from the nature of 
the ground, and the more vigorous resistance, proved unsuccessful. 
The horsemen recoiled in disorder, and dismounting, commenced 
an irregular skirmish with the Indians. Colonel Johnson, who 
had gallantly led a forlorn hope of twenty men, was desperately 
wounded, and borne off before the close of the action. A vigorous 
fire was kept up by the Indians for a considerable time after the 
English had surrendered, but the fall of the brave Tecumseh, and 
the overwhelming force opposed to them, soon compelled them to 
a flight. Proctor fled early in the engagement, and was pursued 


for several miles by several American officers John Chambers 
and Charles S. Todd, aids to General Harrison, together with 
majors Wood and Payne. All was vain, however. The victory 
was decisive, and closed the hostilities, so long protracted, in the 
north-west. They continued with increasing fury upon the eas- 
tern and southern borders of the Union, but as Kentucky had no 
direct share in the campaign of 1814-15, save in the crowning 
victory at New Orleans, it is inconsistent with the plan of this 
sketch to notice any but the last event. 


THE battle of New Orleans was the most brilliant event of the 
last war. It created a deep sensation at the time, and the vast 
political consequences which have resulted from it, have en- 
graved it deeply and indelibly upon the minds of the American 
people. The overthrow of Napoleon in 1814, had rendered dis- 
posable a large part of that veteran British force, which had 
marched under Wellington, through six campaigns of uninter- 
rupted victory, in Spain. New Orleans at that time, contained 
about 17,000 inhabitants, and was then as now, the great empo- 
rium of the Mississippi valley, and its possession by a hostile 
force would inflict incalculable evil, upon the whole country west 
of the Alleghenies. 

At the close of 1814, a force of from eight to twelve thousand 
veteran and incomparable British troops, was placed under the 
command of Sir Edward Packenham, the brother-in-law of Wel- 
lington, and an officer who in a subordinate station, had brilliantly 
distinguished himself at the battle of Salamanca. His orders 
were to seize and hold New Orleans, and in pursuance of that 
object he effected a landing at the mouth of the Mississippi on the 
22d of December, after destroying a flotilla of six gun boats, which 
attempted to prevent the disembarkation of this mighty armament. 
Such was the principal maritime force, which the American gov- 
ernment had prepared to resist this invasion. The land forces 
were upon a similar beggarly scale. General Andrew Jackson, 
of Tennessee, since so celebrated throughout the civilized world, 
was the American commander-in-chief, and when the vanguard 
of the British force encamped a few miles below the city, he had 
only two regiments of regular troops, amounting to less than 
seven hundred men, and about 3000 citizens, without discipline, 
and poorly provided with arms, to meet the bronzed veterans of 
the Peninsula. A division of Kentucky militia was descending 
the Mississippi, under General Thomas, to aid in the defence, but 
had not yet arrived, and when it did come, was almost entirely 


without arms or ammunition, nor were there any adequate maga- 
zines in the city, from which they could be supplied. Several 
boat loads of arms and munitions of war had been shipped at 
Pittsburgh, and were then struggling through the shoals of the 
Ohio; but when they might be expected to arrive, if ever, was 
matter of conjecture. Such was the preparation for defence. 

In the meantime their formidable enemy was upon them, 
within two hours' march of the city, which was entirely unforti- 
fied, and filled with consternation. On the very night of their 
landing, Jackson promptly marched to meet them. The British 
force present under arms was about 4500 men. The force with 
which Jackson made the attack was about 2500, having left one 
brigade of Tennessee militia under General Carroll, and a corps 
of Louisiana militia under Governor Claiborne in the rear, to 
guard against any attempt which might be made by the residue 
of the British force. The American schooner Caroline, com- 
manded by Lieutenant Henly, of the navy, was ordered to drop 
down the river until abreast of the British camp, and co-operate 
with the land forces in the attack. The British troops were en- 
camped upon the very verge of the river, which was high at the 
time, and only prevented by the levee from overflowing the en- 
campment. The Caroline floated slowly down the river, and at- 
tracted no notice from the enemy, who had no suspicion of her 
character. When abreast of the encampment, which was lit up by 
numerous fires, the Caroline dropped her anchor and brought her 
broadside to bear. The enemy in crowded masses, were before 
her, their blood-red uniforms, and gilded accoutrements, glaring 
in the light of an hundred fires. Her guns loaded with grape 
and musket balls, were discharged within half range, upon this 
dense mass, with fatal accuracy. The enemy was completely 
surprised by this attack, and great confusion ensued. The Caro- 
line poured in repeated broadsides, in rapid succession, which 
was answered by vollies of musketry, quickly followed by show- 
ers of Congreve rockets, one of which exploded directly over her 
deck. A portion of the British force sought shelter behind the 
levee, while the residue were withdrawn from the bank, and the 
fires completely extinguished. A dense fog now settled over the 
river and encampment, which added to the darkness of the night. 

For some time the silence was broken only by the regular broad- 
sides of the schooner, and the equally regular discharges of the 
mortar battery. But other sights and sounds quickly followed. 
A tremendous roar of musketry, was soon heard, about one half 
mile back from the river, and the horizon in that direction was 
lit up for a mile in extent by a stream of fire. Scarcely had this 
occurred, when another burst of musketry, intermingled with the 
sharper reports of rifles, in irregular but heavy vollies, upon the 
very verge of the river, and above the late encampment, an- 
nounced to the British commander that Jackson was upon him 
in two divisions, and that in the murky mist, where the fight was 
waged, discipline must yield to native daring. The British 


troops, accustomed to the regular battles, and splendid evolutions 
of the Peninsula, were entirely out of their element in this wild- 
cat fight, in the mud and darkness, of the Mississippi. They 
were ignorant of the number of their enemies, and totally igno- 
rant of the ground. Great confusion on both sides ensued. The 
American troops occasionally fired upon each other, and the 
British did the same. An English officer who was present des- 
cribes it as a desperate and bloody struggle in the dark, where 
wounds were given by swords, knives, bayonets, butts of guns, 
musket and rifle balls in profusion, amidst shouts, cries, and 
curses, which might have awakened the dead. 

After a vehement struggle of two hours, the parties separated 
as if by mutual consent, and sullenly retired to their respective 
camps. The British remained' under arms until daylight, 
not knowing when or from what quarter the attack might be 
renewed, and during the long winter night, the silence was 
broken only by the cries of the miserable wounded, who were 
left in their blood, as they had fallen, over the whole theatre of the 
battle. The American loss, in killed, wounded and prisoners, was 
two hundred and thirteen. The English loss was nearly five 
hundred. The force present on the field, under Jackson, in this 
battle, was composed of Coffee's brigade of Tennesseeans, the 
seventh and forty-fourth regiments of regulars, a company of 
riflemen, a company of marines, two battalions of city volunteers, 
and a regiment of Mississippi volunteer dragoons, who were not 
actually engaged. Upon retiring from the British camp, Jackson 
instantly ordered up Carroll's brigade of Tennesseeans, directing 
Governor Claiborne alone to hold the position in the rear, intend- 
ing with this reinforcement to renew the attack. Carroll promptly 
obeyed the order, and in one hour after midnight was upon the 
ground ready for action. 

Jackson in the meantime had ascertained the force of the 
enemy from the prisoners taken in the battle, and further learned 
that they would be reinforced in the morning by two additional 
regiments. He declined renewing the attack, therefore; and 
withdrawing his force from the immediate vicinity of the enemy, 
he formed them behind a shallow ditch, which crossed the bottom 
at right angles to the river, connecting the river with a swamp. 
The bottom was rather more than one thousand yards broad. 
The earth had been thrown out of the ditch upon the upper side 
and formed a natural, but low breast work. This was greatly 
strengthened by an additional quantity of earth thrown upon it, 
from the upper side, leaving a shallow trench on the upper side 
of the breastwork, in which the men stood, and which in rainy 
weather, was more than ankle deep in mud and water. The ditch 
was extended some distance into the swamp, which was nearly 
impassable beyond it. Coffee's brigade had charge of the flank 
resting upon the swamp. Carroll's brigade and the regulars 
were posted in the centre, and the Louisiana militia had charge 
of the river quarter. The troops were incessantly employed in 


strengthening the lines, and the arrival of the Kentucky militia 
was anxiously expected. 

On the morning after the night skirmish, Sir Edward Packen- 
ham, with two more regiments of the British force arrived, and 
no good reason can be given for his tardiness and delay in 
availing himself of his overpowering superiority. He certainly 
had from five to seven thousand men present under arms, and it 
is equally certain that General Jackson had not much more than 
half that number, fit for duty. When Jackson retired behind the 
ditch, then offering no serious defence, there was nothing to pre- 
vent Packenham's advancing upon him. Kentucky had not then 
appeared, and the British were in full force, save two regiments 
which had not yet come up. Napoleon would have seized the 
golden opportunity, and would have pressed the retiring militia 
so closely as to have given no leisure for that formidable breast- 
work, against which courage and discipline toiled in vain. 

No movement of consequence was made by the British from 
the 24th to the 28th of December, which precious interval was 
improved by Jackson in incessant labor upon his works, and in 
the most active exertions to procure arms from the city and 
neighborhood, and have them prepared by workmen, who were 
employed day and night, in fitting them for service. The right 
bank of the river also engaged Jackson's attention, which was 
completely open to the British, and as they had destroyed the 
schooner Caroline with hot shot, they had complete command of 
the river below. Jackson threw up some hasty works on the 
right bank, and manned them with a few hundred militia, badly 
armed; but there was nothing on the right bank capable of even 
delaying Packenham's march, so late as the 8th of January. 

On the 28th, after the loss of four days,Packenham moved for- 
ward, with a heavy mass against the front of the American lines, 
while a smaller column under Lieutenant Colonel Rennie, a gal- 
lant Scotch officer, attempted to turn the left of the line, where it 
rested upon the swamp. The demonstration in front under 
Packenham was repulsed by a converging fire of artillery from 
the whole line, for Jackson had availed himself of the ample 
time given him by the enemy, to mount some heavy guns taken 
from ships, along his line, and they were worked by the officers 
and seamen of the Caroline, with a skill and accuracy that told 
fearfully upon the advancing column. The demonstration of 
Rennie upon the left flank, if made with a large force and pro- 
perly supported, would probably have been successful. He found 
the swamp passable, although with difficulty, and succeeded in 
turning the left of the line. He was there met by a portion of 
Coffee's brigade, with whom he skirmished, until he was recalled 
by Packenham. 

This demonstration called Jackson's attention more particu- 
larly to his left. The breastwork was extended farther into the 
swamp, and platforms were constructed in the water, upon which 
the men could stand, and by which they could readily pass to the 


extremity of the line. Baffled in this tardy and feeble effort to 
advance, Packenham then commenced regular approaches, as 
if he were attacking a Spanish town strongly fortified, and after 
several days' labor, opened a battery of heavy artillery against 
the earthen breastwork. His guns were ineffectual, however, and 
were quickly dismounted by the American artillery. It seems 
then suddenly to have occurred to Packenham, that the opposite 
bank of the river afforded a passage to the city, and was but 
slightly defended, and he instantly determined to employ his 
whole force, in deepening the canal that led from the British 
fleet to the Mississippi, in order to bring up the boats from the 
fleet, and thus command both banks of the river. This proved 
a herculean undertaking, and was not completed until the eve- 
ning of the 6th of January. 

In the meantime a division of Kentucky militia, commanded by 
General Thomas, more than 2000 strong, arrived in camp, and 
two additional regiments of Louisiana militia arrived. The Ken- 
tucky troops could at first, only muster five hundred muskets, 
and the Louisiana reinforcements were miserably armed. But 
the men were hardy and brave, and immense exertions were 
made to arm them, which were partially successful. Even on 
the day of battle, however, there were six hundred men under 
Jackson ready and anxious to fight, who could not procure a 
musket, to defend their country. Never was there a more strik- 
ing contrast between the activity, energy, and inexhaustible re- 
sources of a general, and the imbecility of a government. 

Having now allowed his enemy time to receive all his rein- 
forcements, to entrench himself behind formidable works, to 
manufacture and repair arms for his naked troops, having first 
directed his enemy's attention to the vulnerable point in his line 
of defence, by a weak demonstration, and then given him ten 
days to strengthen it, Packenham at last determined to attack. 
Having now fifty boats at command, one would suppose that he 
would prefer advancing by the right bank, which was unfortified, 
rather than by the left, which bristled with entrenchments. Both 
would lead to within reach of the city, and by the former rout, 
he would turn those terrible lines, before which he had halted 
seventeen days, and render all Jackson's labor useless. With 
his ample corps of sappers and miners, he might have bridged 
the Mississippi, in the time employed in deepening the canal. 
Even after the boats arrived, twenty-four hours would have trans- 
ported his whole force to the opposite shore. He determined, 
however, to make a demonstration with only 1400 on the right 
bank, and with the residue of his force, to assail the terrible lines 
in front. Orders were given to that effect, on the evening of the 
7th. Colonel Thornton was to cross the river with 1400 men at 
midnight, and assail General Morgan, who commanded on the 
right bank, at day light. At the same time the main body, in 
three columns, on the left bank, was to assail Jackson's line. Pack- 
enham would lead the centre column in person. Lieutenant 


Colonel Rennie the left column, which was to assault the line 
upon the river ; and Lieutenant Colonel Jones, the right column, 
which was destined to turn the left of the line through the 
swamp, and attack the rear of the centre. 

The preparation in the American lines, was of the most for- 
midable kind. The right of the line resting on the river, was 
strengthened by an advanced redoubt, and that whole quarter 
was defended by the Louisiana militia and the regulars. Car- 
roll's Tennessee brigade and about 1100 Kentucky militia, formed 
the centre ; and Coffee's brigade of Tennesseeans guarded the left 
flank, extending far into the swamp. General Thomas being 
sick, General Adair commanded the Kentuckians, who formed a 
corps de reserve, and were directed to march to the assailed point, 
and strengthen the line there. It was well understood that an 
attack would be made on the morning of the 8th, and the Ken- 
tucky troops were marched to the lines before day, and halted 
about fifty yards in rear of the centre, until the grand point of 
attack should be disclosed. It was intended that the line should 
have a depth of ten files at the point of attack, so that the 
stream of fire should be incessant. The front rank alone would 
fire, as fast as the nine ranks behind could pass forward their 
loaded muskets, receiving those discharged, in their places. 
When the point of attack had been clearly disclosed, the Ken- 
tucky troops were ordered to close up, with Carroll's brigade of 
Tennesseeans, upon whom it was evident, the storm was about to 

Two rockets thrown into the air were the signals to move for- 
ward, and the three columns, the veterans of six glorious cam- 
paigns, covered with renown as with a garment, and hitherto 
victorious in every field, rushed against an earthern breastwork, 
defended by men who had hurried from the plough and the work- 
shop, to meet the invaders of their country. The fog lay thick 
and heavy upon the ground, but the measured step of the centre 
column was heard long before it became visible, and the artil- 
lery opened upon them, directed by the sound of the mighty host, 
which bore forward as one man to the assault. At the first burst 
of artillery, the fog slowly lifted, and disclosed the centre column 
advancing in deep silence, but with a swift and steady pace. 

The field was as level as the surface of the calmest lake, and 
the artillery ploughed through the column, from front to rear, 
without for a moment slackening its pace or disordering the 
beautiful precision of its formation. Its head was pointed 
against the centre of the Kentucky and Tennessee line, where 
ten ranks of musketry stood ready to fire as soon as it came 
within one hundred and fifty yards ; the musketry opened along a 
front of four hundred yards, and converged upon the head of the 
column, with destructive effect. There was not a moment's 
pause in the fire. The artillery along the whole line discharged 
showers of grape, the roll of musketry was in one deep unin- 
terrupted thunder, like the roar of an hundred water falls, and 


the central breastwork for four hundred yards, was in a bright 
and long continued blaze, which dazzled the eye. Yet still the 
heroic column bore forward, into the very jaws of death, but no 
longer maintained the beautiful accuracy of its formation. The 
head of the column actually reached the ditch, and were there 
killed or taken. The residue paused and seemed bewildered 
for a moment, and then retired in disorder under the same exter- 
minating torrent of fire, which had greeted their advance. Their 
commander Packenham had perished ; Generals Gibbs and Keane, 
the next in command, had also fallen. A host of inferior officers 
had shared the same fate, and their organization for the time 
was destroyed. 

General Lambert now succeeded to the command, and rallied 
the column for a second effort. ' The officers who had survived 
the terrible burst of fire from the lines, were seen busily reform- 
ing the ranks and encouraging the men. In a few minutes all 
traces of disorder disappeared, and again the column moved for- 
ward, with as rapid a step, and proud a front as at first. Again 
the artillery tore its ranks with grape shot, until it came within 
range of small arms, when the same uninterrupted thunder of 
musketry ensued. The column did not again persevere in ad- 
vance with the heroic fortitude which marked the first effort. 
They broke and fled in confusion, before arriving within one 
hundred yards of the lines, and no efforts of their officers could 
induce them again to advance. 

The river column, under Lieutenant-colonel Rennie, advanced 
against the redoubt with a resolution which nothing but death 
could control. The same fatal fire of artillery and musketry en- 
veloped its ranks. But through all it persevered in advance, and 
mounted the walls of the redoubt with loud cheers, compelling 
its defenders to retire to the breastwork. The redoubt was com- 
manded by the breastwork, and the British troops were exposed 
to a destructive fire, which proved fatal to their gallant com- 
mander and most of the inferior officers. They maintained their 
ground, at an enormous loss, until the central column was dis- 
comfited, when they gave way and retired in confusion. 

The column under Colonel Jones had no better success. They 
found the left flank greatly strengthened since the 28th, and ex- 
tending so far into the swamp, that it could not be turned. They 
were greeted with the same deadly fire from Coffee's brigade, 
which had proved fatal to the other columns, and were with- 
drawn to the shelter of the wood, about the time that Packen- 
ham' s division was repulsed. The battle was over upon the left 
bank, and deep silence succeeded the intolerable roar, which had 
just tortured the senses. Enormous masses of smoke, hovered 
a few feet above the breastwork, and slowly drifted over the 
bloodstained field. Horrid piles of carcasses marked the rout of 
the centre column, which thickened as it approached the lines. 
The hostile ranks were cowering behind a ditch, within half 


range of the artillery, unwilling to advance or retreat. Upon 
the right bank the battle was still going on. 

Previously to the morning of the 8th, General Morgan had been 
detached to the opposite bank with about 1000 militia. Some 
slight defences were hastily thrown up, and a shallow ditch 
formed part of the line, easily passable at every point. Before 
day of the 8th, one hundred and eighty Kentucky militia, and a 
regiment of Louisiana militia, were thrown over to reinforce 
Morgan, raising his force to about 1700 men. The position, al- 
though weak in other respects, was well garnished with artillery, 
and if occupied by well trained troops, could easily have resisted 
Thornton's attack. As it was, however, the militia gave way, 
and the British veterans drove Morgan's whole force before them. 
Although scarcely a tenth of Morgan's force was composed of 
Kentuckians, and although the Kentuckians formed the strength 
of that central force which repulsed Packenham, yet the flight of 
one hundred and eighty Kentuckians upon the right bank, is con- 
spicuously set forth in General Jackson's official report, while 
the steady bravery of 1100 men under Adair, upon the left bank, 
is left to be gathered from other sources. 

The further proceedings before New Orleans, belong to the 
biographer of Jackson, or the historian of the war. But it would 
be improper to dismiss this subject, without some observations 
upon the force of the respective armies. Some American writers 
rate the British force at 14,000, and state Jackson's force at 4000. 
Some British writers estimate Jackson's force at 25,000, and 
sink their own to one-fifth of that number. General Jackson 
states his force at 4698 rank and file, present upon the field. 
Major Pringle, of the British army, states that the field return, on 
the day preceding the battle, shows that the three columns 
which attacked Jackson's lines on the left bank, numbered pre- 
cisely 5493 rank and file. This he admits is exclusive of Thorn- 
ton's force, 1400 rank and file, and also exclusive of the cavalry, 
two squadrons, the artillery, the sappers and miners, the engi- 
neers, etc. Permitting each party to state his own force, and 
taking their accounts as true, it will appear that Jackson had 
4698 rank and file, a portion without arms, and of course not en- 
gaged, while the British had 6893 rank and file, actually em- 
ployed, and the cavalry, the artillery, the sappers and miners, about 
1000 rank and file in all, stood idle. The British certainly had 
nine regiments of grenadiers, one of cavalry, a large body of ma- 
rines, a corps of artillery, a corps of sappers, engineers, etc. 
Two of the regiments, the fifth and ninety-third, are known to 
have exceeded a thousand men; two more, the eighty-fifth and 
ninety-fifth, were less than three hundred strong; while three 
more, the seventh, twenty-first and forty-third, averaged eight 
hundred apiece. It is probable that each party may somewhat 
understate his force, but these statements are the best data for 
forming an opinion. The British loss, by their own account, was 


2070, but by the American inspector general, was reported as 

Peace had actually been agreed upon at Ghent, several weeks 
before the battle, and was soon afterwards ratified. The war 
opened with disgrace, and terminated with glory. It is impossi- 
ble to regard the military operations of Jackson before New Or- 
leans, without being struck with the extraordinary firmness, 
vigor, prudence and activity, displayed upon the one side; and the 
singular tardiness, and absence of the higher military qualities, 
conspicuous in all Packenham's movements. Every moment of 
time was precious to Jackson, and was improved by him, with 
that activity, and energy, which is the precursor of success. On the 
morning of the 24th December, Packenham was within two hours' 
march of the city, and three-fourths of his whole force was 
present under arms. Jackson was before him, with a greatly infe- 
rior force, and on that day retired behind the shallow ditch, which 
he afterwards made impregnable by sixteen days' labor. Why 
did not Packenham follow him closely? He waited four days, 
until joined by the residue of Ids force, and then advanced. During 
these four days, the shallow ditch had been deepened, the earthen 
pile had been trebled in height and thickness, and heavy cannon 
had been procured from the shipping and mounted upon the 
works. Yet still the breastwork could have been turned on its 
right, as Rennie's demonstration showed. Ten more days, how- 
ever, were given to make every thing impregnable, and to re- 
ceive large reinforcements from Kentucky and Louisiana. The 
British bravery and discipline certainly shown out with a bril- 
liant splendor, which was never surpassed on their proudest 
fields. But we look in vain for the mind of a commander. 


AFTER the close of the war, the civil history of Kentucky is 
memorable by the dreadful monetary derangement, which led to 
the passage of the relief laws, and gave rise to the most embit- 
tered and violent conflict of parties, which has ever occurred in 

In 1816, George Madison was elected governor, and Gabriel 
Slaughter lieutenant governor. Madison died a few months after 
his election, and the question agitated Kentucky, whether the 
lieutenant governor became governor during the four years, or 
whether a new election could be ordered by the legislature. The 
question was settled after an animated conflict, against the 


power of the legislature to order a new election, and Slaughter 
became governor until 1820. 

In the meantime the financial affairs of the civilized world 
were in a painful state of disorder. The long wars of the 
French revolution had banished gold and silver from circulation 
as money, and had substituted an inflated paper currency, by 
which nominal prices were immensely enhanced. At the return of! 
peace, a restoration of specie payments, and the return of Europe 
to industrial pursuits, caused a great fall in the nominal value of 
commodities, accompanied by bankruptcy upon an enormous 
scale. In Kentucky the violence of this crisis was enhanced by 
the charter of forty independent banks, with an aggregate capi- 
tal of nearly ten million of dollars, which were by law permitted 
to redeem their notes with the paper of the bank of Kentucky, 
instead of specie. 

These banks were chartered at the session of 1817-18. The 
bank of Kentucky had then resumed specie payments, and was 
in good credit. In the summer of 1818, the state was flooded 
with the paper of these banks. Their managers were generally 
without experience or knowledge of finance, and in some in- 
stances, destitute of common honesty. The consequences were 
such as might have been anticipated. Speculation sprung up in 
all directions. Large loans were rashly made and as rashly ex- 
pended. Most of these bubbles exploded within a year, and few 
were alive at the end of two years. In the meantime the pres- 
sure of debt became terrible, and the power to replevy judg- 
ments was extended by the legislature from three to twelve 
months by an act passed at the session of 1819-20. During the 
summer of 1820, the cry for further relief became overwhelming, 
and vast majorities of both houses, were pledged to some measure 
which should relieve the debtor from the consequences of his 
rashness. The reign of political quackery was in its glory. The 
sufferings of the patient were too acute, to permit him to listen to 
the regular physician who prescribed time, industry and economy, as 
the only honest and just remedy. He turned eagerly to the 
quacks, who promised him instantaneous relief, by infallible 
nostrums and specifics, without pain without self-denied, and without 
paying the penalty which nature always imposes, upon any gross viola- 
tion of her laws. 

General Adair had been elected governor of Kentucky in 1820, 
and heartily concurred with the legislature in the acts passed at 
the ensuing session. The great cry of the people was for money, 
and their heaviest complaint was debt. Therefore, the legisla- 
ture of 1820-21, chartered the bank called the Bank of the Com- 
monwealth, which was relieved from all danger of suspension, 
by not being required even to redeem its notes in specie. Its 
paper was made payable and receivable in the public debts and 
taxes, and certain lands owned by the state, south of Tennessee 
river, were pledged for the final redemption of its notes. Its 
business was to pour out paper in profusion, in order to make 


money plenty. But how was debt to be relieved ? Easily. The 
creditor was required to receive this bank paper in payment of 
his debt, and if he refused to do so, the debtor was authorized to 
replevy the debt for the space of two years. 

But these were not the only acts of this mad session. They 
had already one bank, the old Bank of Kentucky, then in good 
credit, its paper redeemable in specie, and its stock at par or 
nearly so. By the terms of its charter, the legislature had the 
power of electing a number of directors, which gave the control 
of the board. This power was eagerly exercised during this 
winter. An experienced conservative president and board were 
turned out by the legislature, and a president and board elected 
who stood pledged before their election, to receive the paper of 
the Bank of the Commonwealth, in payment of the debts due the 
Bank of Kentucky. This was no doubt intended to buoy up 
their darling bank, and sustain the credit of its paper. But the 
effect was instantly to strike down the value of the stock of the 
Bank of Kentucky to one half its nominal value, and to entail 
upon it an eternal suspension of specie payments. 

The paper of the new bank sunk rapidly to one half its nomi- 
nal value, and the creditor had his choice of two evils. One 
was to receive one half his debt in payment of the whole, and 
the other was to receive nothing at all for two years, and at the 
end of that time, to do the best he could, running the risk of 
new delays at the end of that time, and of the bankruptcy of his 
securities. Great was the indignation of tne creditor, at this 
wholesale confiscation of his property, and society rapidly ar- 
ranged itself into two parties, called relief and anti-relief. With 
the first party, were the great mass of debtors, and some brilliant 
members of the bar, such as John Rowan, William T. Barry and 
Solomon P. Sharpe. A great majority of the voting population 
swelled its ranks, and it was countenanced by the governor, and 
furnished with plausible arguments by the eminent lawyers al- 
ready named, to whom may be added the name of Bibb. With the' 
anti-relief party, were ranged nearly all the mercantile class, a 
vast majority of the bar and bench, and a great majority of the 
better class of farmers. The mass of property and intelligence, 
was drawn up in array, against the mass of numbers, and an 
angry conflict commenced in the newspapers, upon the stump, in 
the taverns and highways, which gradually invaded the most pri- 
vate and domestic circles. Robert Wickliffe, of Fayette, George 
Robertson, since chief justice of Kentucky, then an eminent 
lawyer of Garrard, and Chilton Allen, an eminent lawyer of 
Clark, were early engaged in the conflict, and were regarded as 
leaders of the anti-relief party. 

The question of the power of the legislature to pass the act, 
was raised at an early day, and was quickly brought before the 
circuit courts. Judge Clarke, of Clarke county, boldly decided 
the act unconstitutional, in the first case which came before him, 
and brought upon himself a tempest of indignation, which 


thoroughly tested the firmness of his character. He was sum- 
moned to appear before a called session of the legislature, which 
was convened in the spring of 1822, and violent efforts were made 
to intimidate, or remove him by address. The gallant judge de- 
fended his opinion with calm reason, and invincible firmness, 
and partly from a want of a constitutional majority, partly per- 
haps from the suggestion, that the legislature should await the 
decision of the supreme court of Kentucky upon the subject, the 
legislative storm blew over, leaving the judge as it found him. 
He adhered steadily to his decision, and was quickly supported 
by Judge Blair of Fayette, in an opinion replete with learning, 
temper and eloquence. Great was the indignation of the party 
at this refractory spirit displayed by the inferior judiciary. 

But all awaited the decision of the supreme court. That high 
tribunal was then occupied by John Boyle, chief justice, and Wil- 
liam Owsley and Benjamin Mills, associate judges. These gen- 
tlemen had passed the meridian of life, and had been drilled for 
a long series of years, to the patient and abstract severity of 
judicial investigation. In simplicity and purity of character, in 
profound legal knowledge, and in Roman-like firmness of pur- 
pose, the old court of appeals of Kentucky have seldom been sur- 
passed. The question came directly before them in the case of 
Lapsley vs. Brashear, at the fall term 1823, and their decision 
was awaited, with intense anxiety by all parties. Terrible de- 
nunciations of popular vengeance in advance, if they dared to 
thwart the will of a vast majority of the people, were intended 
to warp their judgments or operate upon their fears. They had 
maintained an unbroken silence until called upon to act, but 
when the case came directly before them, the judges delivered 
their opinion, seriatim, and at length, and calmly concurred with 
their brethren of the circuit court, that the act of the legislature 
was in violation of the constitution of the United States, and 
totally void. The clause of the constitution with which the act 
conflicted, was that which prohibited the states from passing any 
law impairing the obligation of contracts. In the article on the 
court of appeals, in the following pages, a concise summary of 
the reasoning of the court is given. 

The opinion created an immense sensation in the State, and 
the conflict of parties was renewed with redoubled fury. Clark 
and Blair were completely forgotten, and the great popular party 
of Kentucky, prepared to sweep from their path, and make an 
example to future ages of the three calm and recluse students, 
who had dared to set up reason against rage, and the majesty of 
truth and law, against the popular will. The great majority, had 
been accustomed to make and to unmake, to set up and to pull 
down at its sovereign will and pleasure. Presidents, governor, 
senators, representatives, had long been the creatures of its 
power, and the flatterers of its caprice. James the first had not 
a more exalted notion of his divine prerogative than the great 
majority had of its undoubted right to govern. The power of the 


judiciary had heretofore been so unobtrusive, that its vast extent 
and importance had escaped attention, and the masses were 
startled to find that three plain citizens, could permanently ar- 
rest the action, and thwart the wishes of that majority, before 
which presidents, governors and congresses, bowed with implicit 
submission. Many good honest citizens looked upon it, as mon- 
strous, unnatural, unheard of in a republican government. It 
shocked all the notions of liberty and democracy which had 
grown with their growth, and violently wounded that sense of 
importance allied to arrogance, which always attends a long exer- 
cise of unresisted power. 

The judiciary, by the constitution, held their offices during good 
behavior. Nothing less than two-thirds of both houses could 
remove them. Could they hope to obtain this majority ? The 
canvass of 1824, was conducted with the hope of obtaining this 
result. General Joseph Desha was the candidate of the relief 
party for the office of governor, and canvassed the state with 
that energy and partizan vehemence, for which he was remark- 
able. He was elected by an overwhelming majority. A vast 
majority of both houses were of the relief party. The governor 
and the legislature met in December, with passions heated by the 
fierce canvass through which they had passed, and the unspar- 
ing wounds which they had received from their enemies. The 
sword was fairly drawn, and the scabbard had been thrown away 
by both parties. So exasperated were the passions, that the mi- 
nority was as little disposed to ask quarter, as the majority was 
to give it. The three judges were summoned before the legisla- 
tive bar, and calmly assigned reasons at length, for their deci- 
sion. These reasons were replied to, with great speciousness and 
subtlety ; for the great talents of Rowan, Bibb and Barry, were 
at the command of the relief party, and their manifestos were 
skillfully drawn. A vote was at length taken, and the constitu- 
tional majority of two-thirds could not be obtained. The mi- 
nority exulted in the victory of the judges. 

But their adversaries were too much inflamed to be diverted 
from their purpose, by ordinary impediments. The edict of 
" Delcnda cst Carthago" had gone forth, and the party rapidly 
recovering from their first defeat, renewed the assault in a formi- 
dable direction, which had not been foreseen, and when success 
was clearly within their reach. The majority could not remove 
the judges by impeachment or address, because their majority 
although large, was not two-thirds of each house. But they 
could repeal the act by which the court of appeals had been or- 
ganized, and could pass an act organizing the court anew. The 
judges would follow the court as in the case of the district court 
and court of quarter sessions, and a bare majority would suffice 
to pass this act. A bill to this effect was drawn up, and debated 
with intense excitement, during three days, and three protracted 
night sessions. Wickliife, denounced the party, with fierce and 
passionate invective, as trampling upon the constitution, deli- 


berately, knowingly and wickedly. Rowan replied with cold and 
stately subtlety, perplexing when he could not convince, and sedu- 
lously confounding the present act, with the repeal of the dis- 
trict court and with the action of Congress, in repealing the 
federal circuit court system, and displacing its judges by a bare 
majority. On the last night, the debate was protracted until 
past midnight. The galleries were crowded with spectators as 
strongly excited as the members. The governor and lieutenant 
governor M'Afee were present upon the floor, and mingled with 
the members. Both displayed intense excitement, and the gov- 
ernor was heard to urge the calling of the previous question. 
Great disorder prevailed, and an occasional clap and hiss, was 
heard in the galleries. The bill was passed by a large majority 
in the house of representatives, and by a nearly equal majority 
in the senate. 

No time was lost in organizing the new court, which consisted 
of four judges. William T. Barry was chief justice, and John 
Trimble, James Haggin and Reginald Davidge, were associate 
justices. Francis P. Blair was appointed clerk, and took forci- 
ble possession of the records of Achilles Sneed, the old clerk. 
The old court in the meantime, denied the constitutionality of 
the act, and still continued to sit as a court of appeals, and de- 
cide such causes as were brought before them. A great majority 
of the bar of Kentucky recognized them as the true court, and 
brought their causes by appeal before their tribunal. A great 
majority of the circuit judges, obeyed their mandates, as impli- 
citly as if no reorganizing act had passed. A certain propor- 
tion of cases, however, were taken up to the new court, and some 
of the circuit judges obeyed their mandates exclusively, refusing 
to recognize the old court. A few judges obeyed both, declining 
to decide which was the true court. 

This judicial anarchy could not possibly endure. The people 
as the final arbiter was again appealed to by both parties, and 
the names of relief and anti-relief became merged in the title of 
old court and new court. Great activity was exerted in the can- 
vass of 1825, and never were the passions of the people more 
violently excited. The result was the triumph of the old court 
party by a large majority in the popular branch of the legisla- 
ture, while the senate still remained attached to the new court; 
the new popular impulse not having had time to remould it. 

In consequence of this difference between the political com- 
plexion of the two houses, the reorganizing act still remained 
unrepealed, and the canvass of 1826, saw both parties again ar- 
rayed in a final struggle for the command of the senate. The 
old court party again triumphed, and at the ensuing session of 
the legislature the obnoxious act was repealed, the opinion of 
the governor to the contrary notwithstanding, and the three old 
judges re-established, de facto as well as de jure. Their salaries 
were voted to them, during the period of their forcible and ille- 
gal removal, and all the acts of the new court have ever been 


treated as a nullity. This is one of the most signal triumphs of 
law and order over the fleeting passions, which for a time over- 
come the reason of the most sober people, which is recorded in 
the annals of a free people. It is honorable to the good sense of 
the people of Kentucky, and strikingly displays their inherent at- 
tachment to sober and rational liberty. 

The new court party acquiesced in the decision of the people, 
and abandoning state politics, they strove to forget their defeat in 
a new issue of a national character, in which the state became 
as deeply excited in the year 1827, as it had been in its domestic 
policy. Adams had been elected president in 1824, by the vote 
of Mr. Clay, and by his influence in the house of representatives 
over the delegates from Kentucky and Missouri. Jackson had 
been his strongest competitor,' and was personally more popular 
in the west than Adams. Mr. Clay received the appointment of 
secretary of state from Adams, and of course became identified 
with his administration. The ancient dislike to New England, 
was still strong in Kentucky, and the new court party in mass 
threw themselves into the opposition to Adams' administration, 
and boldly denounced Mr. Clay as an apostate from the ancient 
republican party, although Mr. Adams for nearly twenty years 
had been a member of that party, and had formed a distinguished 
part of president Monroe's administration. 

The great mass of the old court party, warmly and passion- 
ately sustained Clay in his vote, and adhered to the administra- 
tion of which he formed the life and soul. The old issues in 
1827 were completely forgotten, and national politics were dis- 
cussed with an ardor unknown in Kentucky since the war fever 
of 1812. It quickly became obvious that in this new issue, the old 
court party were losing their preponderance in the state. The 
unpopular name of Adams told heavily against them, and the 
sword of Jackson and the glory of New Orleans, were thrown 
into the scale. 

Both parties prepared for the great contest of 1828 in Ken- 
tucky, with intense interest. Their gubernatorial election came 
off in August, and the old court party, which had now assumed 
the name of "National Republican," selected General Thomas 
Metcalfe as their candidate for governor, while the opposite party 
adopted the popular name of " Democratic Republicans," selected 
William T. Barry, the late chief justice of the new court, as their 
candidate. Metcalfe had commenced life as a stone mason, and 
by the energy of his character, had risen to honor and distinction. 
He had been a representative in congress for nearly ten years, 
and was possessed of great personal popularity. After an active 
canvass Metcalfe was elected by a small majority, but the oppo- 
site party carried their lieutenant governor and a majority of the 
legislature, and it was obvious that they had a majority of the 
votes in their ranks. 

At the November election Jackson carried the state by a 
majority of eight thousand, and Adams was beaten in the United 


States by an overwhelming vote. Although Clay was not directly 
involved in this issue, yet the weight of the popular verdict fell 
heavily upon him. The party that had supported Adams in the 
United States instantly rallied upon Clay, and organized for 
another struggle in 1832, against Jackson, who would certainly be 
a candidate for re-election. With Clay directly before the people, 
the "National Republican" party in Kentucky, felt confident of 
regaining their ascendency in the State. His brilliant eloquence, 
his courage, his energy of character, his indomitable spirit, 
made him a fit competitor for Jackson, who possessed some of the 
same qualities in an equal degree. During the conflicts of 1829 
and 1830, the Jackson supremacy was maintained in the legisla- 
ture, and in the delegates to Congress, but in the fall of 1831, the 
"Clay party" as it was called by many, obtained a majority in 
the legislature, and this was strikingly made manifest to the 
Union by the election of Clay to the senate of le United States. 
A majority of the congressional delegation, however, were still of 
the " Democratic" or Jackson party, and it was uncertain which 
party had obtained a majority of the popular vote. 

The great contest of 1832 came on. Jackson and Clay were 
competitors for the presidency, and Kentucky had to choose a 
successor to Metcalfe in the gubernatorial chair. Judge Buckner 
was the candidate selected by the "Nationals," and Breathitt by 
the "Democrats" or Jackson party. Great efforts were made by 
both parties, and Breathitt was elected by more than one thousand 
votes. Immense rejoicings upon one side, and bitter mortifica- 
tion upon the other, were occasioned by this result. But the 
"Nationals" instantly called a convention, which was nume- 
rously attended, and organized for a decisive struggle in No- 
vember, with a spirit exasperated, but not cowed by their recent 
defeat. The "Democrats" or "Jackson party" also held a con- 
vention, and it became obvious that the preliminary trial of 
strength in August, was only a prelude to the decisive conflict 
which was to come off in November. The intervening months 
were marked by prodigious activity on both sides, and the excite- 
ment became so engrossing, that all ages and both sexes, were 
drawn into the vortex. The result was a signal and overwhelm- 
ing triumph of the "National Republicans." The popular ma- 
jority exceeded seven thousand, and the party which then 
triumphed has held uninterrupted possession of political power 
in the State ever since. But although the triumph of Clay was 
signal in Kentucky, he was totally defeated by Jackson in the 
general election, and that popular chieftain was re-elected by a 
great majority. 

National politics have almost entirely engrossed the attention 
of Kentucky since the termination of the great relief struggle. 
Her domestic history since 1827, is so closely interwoven with 
that of the general government, that it would be impossible to 
give a satisfactory view of the subjects which engrossed the at- 
tention of the people, without entering into details forbidden by 


the plan of an outline sketch like the present. A few events 
belonging exclusively to her domestic history may be briefly 

The fate of the Commonwealth's Bank, and the replevin laws 
connected with it, was sealed by the triumph of the old court 
party. The latter were repealed, and the former was gradually 
extinguished by successive acts of the legislature, which directed 
that its paper should be gradually burned, instead of being re- 
issued. In a very few years its paper disappeared from circula- 
tion, and was replaced by the paper of the United States' Bank, 
of which two branches had been established in Kentucky, the 
one at Lexington and the other at Louisville. It was the policy 
of the great Jackson party of the United States to destroy this 
institution entirely, and the re-election of Jackson in 1832, sealed 
its doom. It became obvious to all that its charter would not be 
renewed, and the favorite policy of that party was to establish 
state banks throughout the Union, to supply its place. 

As soon as it became obvious that the charter of the bank of 
the United States would not be renewed, the legislature of Ken- 
tucky, at its sessions of 1833 and 1834, established the Bank of 
Kentucky, the Northern Bank of Kentucky, and the Bank of 
Louisville, the first with a capital of $5,000,000, the second with 
a capital of $3,000,000, the third with a capital of $5,000,000. 
The result of this simultaneous and enormous multiplication of 
state banks throughout the United States, consequent upon the 
fall of the National Bank, was vastly to increase the quantity of 
paper money afloat, and to stimulate the wildest spirit of specu- 
lation. The nominal prices of all commodities rose with por- 
tentous rapidity, and states, cities and individuals, embarked 
heedlessly and with feverish ardor in schemes of internal im- 
provement, and private speculation, upon the most gigantic scale. 
During the years of 1835 and 1836, the history of one State is 
the history of all. All rushed into the market to borrow money, 
and eagerly projected plans of railroads, canals, slack-water navi- 
gation and turnpike roads, far beyond the demands of commerce, 
and in general without making any solid provision for the pay- 
ment of the accruing interest, or reimbursement of the principal. 
This fabric was too baseless and unreal to endure. 

In the spring of 1837, all the banks of Kentucky and of the 
Union suspended specie payments. Kentucky was then in the 
midst of a scheme of internal improvement, upon which she was 
spending about $1 ,000,000 annually, embracing the construction of 
turnpike roads and the improvement of her rivers, and she was 
eagerly discussing railroad projects upon a princely scale. Her 
citizens were generally involved in private speculations, based 
upon the idea that the present buoyant prices would be perma- 
nent, and both public and private credit had been strained to the 

In this state of things the legislature of 1837 met, and legal- 
ized the suspension of the banks, refusing to compel them to 


resume specie payments, and refusing to exact the forfeiture 
of their charters. A general effort was made by banks, govern- 
ment and individuals, to relax the pressure of the crisis, as much 
as possible, and great forbearance and moderation was exercised 
by all parties. The effect was to mitigate the present pressure, 
to delay the day of reckoning, but not to remove the evil. Specie 
disappeared from circulation entirely, and the smaller coin was 
replaced by paper tickets, issued by cities, towns and individuals, 
having a local currency, but worthless beyond the range of their 
immediate neighborhood. The banks in the meantime w T ere con- 
ducted with prudence and ability. They forbore to press their 
debtors severely, but cautiously and gradually lessened their cir- 
culation and increased their specie, until after a suspension of 
rather more than one year, they ventured to resume specie pay- 
ment. This resumption was general throughout the United 
States, and business and speculation again became buoyant. 
The latter part of 1838 and nearly the whole of 1839, witnessed 
an activity in business, and a fleeting prosperity, which some- 
what resembled the feverish ardor of 1835 and 1836. But the 
fatal disease still lurked in the system, and it was the hectic 
flush of an uncured malady, not the ruddy glow of health, 
which deluded the eye of the observer. 

In the autumn of 1839, there was a second general suspension 
of specie payments, with the exception of a few eastern banks. 
It became obvious that the mass of debt could not much longer 
be staved off. Bankruptcies multiplied in every direction. All 
public improvements were suspended; many states were unable 
to pay the interest of their respective debts, and Kentucky was 
compelled to add fifty per cent, to her direct tax, or forfeit her in- 
tegrity. In the latter part of 1841, and in the year 1842, the tem- 
pest so long suspended, burst in fall force over Kentucky. The 
dockets of her courts groaned under the enormous load of law- 
suits, and the most frightful sacrifices of property were incurred 
by forced sales under execution. All at once the long forgotten 
cry of relief again arose from thousands of harassed voters, and 
a new project of a Bank of the Commonwealth, like the old one, 
was agitated, with a blind and fierce ardor, which mocked at the 
lessons of experience, and sought present relief at any expense. 

This revival of the ancient relief party, assumed a formidable 
appearance in the elections of 1842, but was encountered in the 
legislature with equal skill and firmness. The specific measures 
of the relief party were rejected, but liberal concessions were 
made to them in other forms, which proved satisfactory to the 
more rational members, and warded off the fury of the tempest 
which at first threatened the most mischievous results. The 
middle term of the circuit courts was abolished. The magis- 
trates were compelled to hold four terms annually, and forbidden 
to give judgment save at their regular terms. The existing banks 
were required to issue more paper, and give certain accommoda- 
tions for a longer time and a regular apportionment. These con- 


cessions proved satisfactory, and at the expense of vast suffer- 
ing, during the years 1843 and 1844, society gradually assumed a 
more settled and prosperous state. 

In order to preserve a record of the succession of chief magis- 
trates, we may observe that judge James Clark, was elected gov- 
ernor in 1836, Robert P. Letcher in 1840, and judge William 
Owsley in 1844. The first will be recollected as the circuit judge 
who first had the hardihood to pronounce the relief law uncon- 
stitutional. The last was a member of the old court of appeals. 
Their successive election to the first office within the gift of the 
people, was a late and well merited reward for the signal ser- 
vices which they had rendered their country, at a period when 
all the conservative features of the constitution, were tottering 
beneath the fury of a revolutionary tempest. Governor Letcher 
had long occupied a seat in congress, and had inflexibly opposed 
the great Jackson party of the Union in its imperious sway. 

General Harrison was before the people as a presidential can- 
didate, during the years 1836 and 1840, when both Clark and 
Letcher were elected, and was warmly supported by that party 
in Kentucky, which successively bore the name of " Anti-relief," 
"Old Court," "National Republican" and "Whig." When Ows- 
ley was a candidate in 1844, Clay was again before the people 
as a candidate for the presidential chair, and was opposed by 
James K. Polk, of Tennessee, a member of the old Jackson party, 
which had assumed the popular title of " Democratic Republi- 
can." Clay was supported as usual in Kentucky, with intense 
and engrossing ardor, and obtained its electoral vote by a ma- 
jority exceeding nine thousand. He was supported by the whig 
party of the Union, with a warmth of personal devotion, which 
has seldom been witnessed, and was never surpassed in the 
annals of popular government. Parties were so equally 
balanced, that the result was in doubt to the last moment, and 
was finally decided by the state of New York, which out of 
nearly 500,000 votes cast, gave Polk a plurality over Clay of less 
than 6000. 

The great national issue involved in this election, was the an- 
nexation of Texas to the United States. Polk was the champion 
of the party in favor of annexation, and Clay opposed it as tend- 
ing to involve the country in foreign war and internal discord. 
This tendency was vehemently denied by the adversaries of 
Clay, and annexation was accomplished by the election of Polk. 
Foreign war has already followed in the train, and internal dis- 
cord seems slowly upheaving its dismal front, among the States 
of the confederacy. 

With the year 1844, we close this sketch. The war with 
Mexico which grew out of the policy then adopted, is still 
raging, and the spirit of indefinite territorial aggrandizement 
which then triumphed, has not yet developed its consequences. 
A brief record of the past is here presented. The darkening 


shadows of coming events, present a dim and troubled prospect, 
which we leave to the pencil of the future historian. 

In the foregoing " Outline History," reference has necessarily 
been made and considerable space devoted to the political trans- 
actions that occurred in Kentucky previously to her admission 
into the Union as an independent State. That there were at 
that time two rival parties for popular favor, is obvious from 
what has been already written ; and that their rivalship was char- 
acterized by great and bitter personal animosity, is no less true. 
Angry and fierce contests, and crimination and recrimination 
marked the period, and the temper of the times can be clearly 
discerned from the nature of the charges brought on one side, 
and the manner in which they were repelled by the other. Mr. 
MC-CLUNG, the writer of the Outline History, has given a summary 
of the facts, as stated by the two historians, Mr. Marshall and 
Mr. Butler, as he understands them, but declines to draw any 
conclusion from them leaving that to the reader's judgment. 
The principal allegation against the Honorable JOHN BROWN, then 
a conspicuous member of Congress, and three times subsequently 
thereto elected a senator in Congress from the State of Kentucky, 
is, that in a letter to Judge Muter, he communicated the substance 
of an interview between himself and Gardoqui in confidence, and 
that he afterwards in a convention held at Danville, maintained 
an ominous silence on the same subject. This seeming secrecy 
and reserve were held to be evidences of a criminal purpose, and 
as such are commented upon with great acrimony by the first 
named historian. 

Since the preparation of the outline history, and after it had 
passed through the hands of the stereotypist, attention has been 
called to the following letter from Mr. Madison, which discloses 
the fact that so far from its being the wish of Mr. Brown to con- 
ceal the interview with Gardoqui, or invest it with mystery, he 
communicated it at the time to Mr. Madison himself, then a mem- 
ber of Congress from Virginia, and known to be one of the pro- 
foundest statesmen and purest patriots in the country ; and that 
whatever of reserve may have appeared in his communications 
or manner to others, was in accordance with the advice of Mr. 
Madison himself. It is due to the truth of history that the letter 
of Mr. Madison should be inserted here. In the opinion of the 
author of this work, it is a triumphant vindication of the motives 
of Mr. Brown, and he believes it will be generally so considered. 

Copy of a letter from James Madison, ex-president of the Uni- 
ted States, to Mann Butler, Esq., (as published in Appendix to 
second edition of Butler's History of Kentucky, page 518.) 

" MONTPELIER, October 11, 1834. 

"DEAR SIR; I have received your letter of the 21st ult., in which you wish 
to obtain my recollection of what passed between Mr. Brown and me in 1788 on 
the overtures of Gardoqui, ' that if the people of Kentucky would erect them- 



selves into an Independent State, and appoint a proper person to negotiate with 
iii in, he had authority for that purpose, and would enter into an arrangement with 
them for the exportation of their produce to New Orleans.' 

' My recollection, with which reference to my manuscript papers accord, leaves no 
doubt that the overture was communicated to me by Mr. Brown. Nor can I doubt 
that, as stated by him, I expressed the opinion and apprehension that a knowl- 
edge of it in Kentucky, might, in the excitement there, be mischievously employed. 
This view of the subject evidently resulted from the natural and known impa- 
tience of the people on the waters of the Mississippi, for a market for the pro- 
ducts of their exuberant soil ; from the distrust of the Federal policy, produced 
by the project for surrendering the use of that river for a term of years ; and from 
a coincidence of the overture in point of time, with the plan on foot for consoli- 
dating the Union by arming it with new powers, an object, to embarrass and 
defeat which, the dismembering aims of Spain would not fail to make the most 
tempting sacrifices, and to spare no intrigues. 

"I owe it to Mr. Brown, with whom I was in intimate friendship when we 
were associated in public life, to observe, that I always regarded him, whilst 
steadily attentive to the interests of his constituents, as duly impressed with the 
importance of the Union, and anxious for its prosperity. I pray you to accept 
with my respects, my cordial salutations. 






THE Constitution of Kentucky like that of the United States, and those, also, 
of all the States of the Anglo-American Union distributes among three depart- 
ments of organic sovereignty, all the political powers which it recognises and 
establishes. And to effectuate, in practice, the theoretic equilibrium and security 
contemplated by this fundamental partition of civil authority, it not only declares 
that the Legislature shall exercise no other power than such as may be legisla- 
tive the Judiciary no other than that which is judicial nor the Executive any 
other than such as shall be executive in its nature; but it also, to a conservative 
extent, secures the relative independence of each of these depositaries of power. 
If courts were permitted to legislate, or the legislature were suffered not only 
to prescribe the rule of right, but to decide on the constitutional validity of its 
own acts, or adjudicate on private rights, no citizen could enjoy political security 
against the ignorance, the passions or the tyranny of a dominant party: And if 
judges were dependent for their offices on the will of a mere legislative majority, 
their timidity and subservience might often add judicial sanction to unconstitu- 
tional enactments, and thereby, instead of guarding the constitution as honest and 
fearless sentinels, they would help the popular majority to become supreme, and 
to rule capriciously, in defiance of all the fundamental prohibitions and guaranties 
of the people's organic law. As the legislature derives its being and authority 
from the constitution, which is necessarily supreme and inviolable, no legislative 
act prohibited by any of its provisions, can be law ,- and, consequently, as it is the 
province of the judiciary, acting as the organ of the judicial function of popular 
sovereignty, to declare and administer the law in every judicial case, it must be 
the duty, as well as privilege, of every court to disregard every legislative viola- 
tion of the constitution, as a nullity, and thus maintain the practical supremacy 
and inviolability of the fundamental law. But the will to do so, whenever proper, 
is as necessary as the power ; and, therefore, the constitution of Kentucky pro- 
vides that the judges of the Court of Appeals, and also of inferior courts, shall be 
entitled to hold their offices during good behavior; and, moreover, provides that 
no judge shall be subject to removal otherwise than by impeachment, on the trial 
of which there can be no conviction, without the concurrence of two-thirds of the 
Senate or by the address of both branches of the legislature, two-thirds of each 
branch concurring therein. 

The first constitution of Kentucky, which commenced its operation on the 1st 
of June, 1792, also prohibited the legislature from reducing a judge's salary du- 
ring his continuance in office. But the present constitution, adopted in 1799, 
contains no such prohibition. It is not difficult to perceive which of these con- 
stitutions is most consistent with the avowed theory of both as to judicial inde- 
pendence ; for, certainly, there can be no sufficient assurance of judicial indepen 



dence, when the salary of every judge depends on the will of a legislative majority 
of the law-making department. 

But to secure a permanent tribunal for adjudicating on the constitutionality of 
legislative acts, the existing constitution of Kentucky, like its predecessor in 
this respect, ordained and established "A SUPREME COURT," and vested it with ul- 
timate jurisdiction. Section one and two of the 4th article reads as follows : 

"SEC. 1. The judicial power of this commonwealth, both as to matters of law and 
equity, shall be vested in one Supreme Court, which shall be styled the Court of Appeals, 
and in such inferior courts as the General Assembly may, from time to time, erect and es- 

"SEC. 2. The Court of Appeals, except in cases otherwise provided for in this constitution 
shall have appellate jurisdiction only, which shall be co-extensive with the state, under such 
restrictions and regulations, not repugnant to this constitution, as may, from time to time, be 
prescribed by law." 

As long as these fundamental provisions shall continue to be authoritative, there 
must be in Kentucky a judicial tribunal with appellate jurisdiction "co-extensive 
with the State," and co-ordinate with the legislative and executive departments. 
And this tribunal being established by the constitution, the legislature can neither 
abolish it nor divest it of appellate jurisdiction. The theoretic co-ordinacy of the 
organic representatives of the three functions of all political sovereignty, requires 
that the judicial organ, of the last resort, shall be as permanent and inviolable as 
the constitution itself. The great end of the constitution of Kentucky, and of 
every good constitution, is to prescribe salutary limits to the inherent power of nu- 
merical majorities. Were the political omnipotence of every such majority either 
reasonable or safe, no constitutional limitations on legislative will would be ne- 
cessary or proper. But the whole tenor of the Kentucky constitution implies that 
liberty, justice and security, (the ends of all just government,) require many such 
fundamental restrictions : And not only to prescribe such as were deemed proper, 
but more especially to secure their efficacy, was the ultimate object of the people in 
adopting a constitution : And, to assure the integrity and practical supremacy of 
these restrictions, they determined that, as long as their constitution should last, 
there should be a tribunal, the judges of which should be entitled to hold their 
offices as long as the tribunal itself should exist and they should behave well and 
continue competent, in the judgment of as many as one-third of each branch of the 
legislature, on an address, or of one-third of the senate, on an impeachment : And, 
to prevent evasion, they have provided that, whilst an incumbent judge of the 
Appellate Court may be removed from his office by a concurrent vote of two-thirds, 
neither the appellate tribunal, nor the office itself, shall be subject to legislative 

There is a radical difference in the stability of the supreme and inferior courts. 
The first is constitutional the last is only statutory. As the constitution itself 
establishes the Court of Appeals, this tribunal can be abolished by a change of the 
constitution alone. But as the circuit courts are established by statute, the su- 
preme power, that is, a legislative majority, may repeal it, and thereby abolish 
these courts ; and, of course, the office of judge ceases with the abolition of his 
court. It would be certainly incompatible with the genius of the constitution to 
abolish the circuit courts, merely to get clear of the incumbent judges: Yet, as 
the power to abolish exists, the motive of the abolition cannot judicially affect the 
validity of the act. And, as the organization of inferior courts is deferred, by the 
constitution, to legislative experience and discretion; and as, moreover, a new 
system of such courts may often be usefully substituted for one found to be inel- 
igible, the legislature ought not to be restrained from certain melioration, by a 
fear of shaking the stability of the judiciary. The constitutional inviolability of 
the Court of Appeals, which may rectify the errors of the inferior tribunal, may 
sufficiently assure judicial independence and rectitude. 

The fundamental immutability of the Court of Appeals, and the value of the du- 
rable tenure by which the judges hold their offices, have been impressively illus- 
trated in the history and results of ''-the relief system" and resulting "old and new 
court," which agitated Kentucky almost to convulsion for several years the most 
pregnant and memorable in the annals of the State. That system of legislative 
"relief," as it was miscalled, was initiated in 1817-18, by retrospective prolonga- 


tions of replevins, of judgments and decrees and it was matured, in 1820, by 
the establishment of the Bank of the Commonwealth, without either capital or the 
guaranty of state credit, and by subsidiary enactments extending replevins to two 
years in all cases in which the creditor should fail to endorse on his execution his 
consent to take, at its nominal value, local bank paper greatly depreciated. The 
object of the legislature, in establishing such a bank, and in enacting such co-op- 
erative statutes as those just alluded to, was to enable debtors to pay their debts 
in much less than their value, by virtually compelling creditors to accept much 
less, or incur the hazards of indefinite and vexatious delays. 

The constitutionality of the Bank of the Commonwealth, though generally doubt- 
ed, was sustained by many judicial recognitions by the Court of Appeals of 
Kentucky, and finally by an express decision in which the then judges (Robert- 
son, chief justice, and Underwood and Nicholas, judges) without expressing their 
own opinions, deferred to those incidental recognitions by their predecessors, and 
also to the opinion of the Supreme Court of the United States, in the case of 
Craig vs. Missouri, in which that court defined a "bill of credit," prohibited by 
the national constitution, to be a bill issued, as currency, by a State and on the 
credit of the State. The notes of the Bank of the Commonwealth, though issued 
by and in the name of the State of Kentucky, were not issued on the credit of 
the State, but expressly on the exclusive credit of a nominal capital dedicated 
by the charter and this known fact produced the rapid depreciation of those 
notes ; and, consequently, the same Supreme Court of the United States, affirmed 
the said decision of the Appellate Court of Kentucky, as it was compelled to do 
by its own authority, in Craig vs. Missouri, unless it had overruled so much of 
that decision as declared that it was an indispensable characteristic of a prohib- 
ited " bill of credit," that it should be issued on the credit of the State, There is 
much reason for doubting the correctness of these decisions by the national 
judiciary and, if they be maintained, there is good cause for apprehending that 
the beneficent policy of the interdiction of State bills of credit may be entirely 
frustrated, and the constitutional prohibition altogether paralysed or eluded. 

When the validity of the statutes retrospectively extending replevins, was 
brought before the Court of Appeals, the three judges then constituting that court, 
(Messrs. Boyle, chief justice, and Owsley and Mills, judges,) delivered separate 
opinions, all concurring in the conclusion that those statutes, so far as they retro- 
acted on contracts depending for their effect on the law of Kentucky, were incon- 
sistent with that clause in the federal constitution, which prohibits the legisla- 
tures of the several states in the union from passing any act " impairing the 
obligation of contracts," and also, of course, with the similar provision in the 
constitution of Kentucky, inhibiting any such enactment by the legislature of 
this State. A more grave and eventful question could not have been presented 
to the court for its umpirage. It subjected to a severe, but decisive ordeal, the 
personal integrity, firmness and intelligence of the judges, and the value of that 
degree of judicial independence and stability contemplated by the constitution. 
The question involved was new and vexed ; and a majority of the people of the 
State had approved, and were, as they seemed to think, vitally interested in 
maintaining; their constituent power to enact such remedial statutes. 

Under this accumulated burthen of responsibility, however, the court being of 
the opinion that the acts impaired the obligation of contracts made in Kentucky 
antecedently to their date, honestly and firmly so decided, without hesitation or 
dissent. The court argued, 1st. That every valid contract had two kinds of obli- 
gation the one moral, the other legal or civil ; that the fundamental interdicts 
applied to the legal obligation only, because, as moral obligations are as immuta- 
ble as the laws of God, and depend on the consciences of men, and therefore 
cannot be impaired by human legislation or power consequently, it would be 
ridiculously absurd to suppose that the constitution intended to interdict that 
which, without any interdiction, could not be done. 2d. That, as moral obliga- 
tion results from the sanctions of natural law, so civil obligation arises from the 
sanctions of human law ; that, whenever the laws of society will not uphold nor 
enforce a contract, that contract possesses no civil obligation, but may be alone 
morally obligatory ; that the obligation, whether moral or civil, is the chain, tie, 
or ligature, which binds, coerces, persuades, or obliges the obligor; that all civil 
obligation, therefore, springs from and is regulated by the punitory or remedial 


power of human law ; that the destruction or withdrawal of all such power, 
must annihilate all merely civil obligation ; that, consequently, that which im- 
pairs such power must, to the same extent, impair such obligation; and, that, 
whatever renders the remedial agency of the law less certain, effectual or valua- 
ble, impairs it ; and, also, necessarily impairs, therefore, the obligation which it 
creates. 3d. That the civil obligation of a contract depends on the law of the 
place when and where it is made ; and that any subsequent legislation that 
essentially impairs the legal remedy for maintaining or enforcing that contract, 
must, consequently, so far, impair its legal obligation. 4th. That, if a retro- 
active extension of replevin from three months to two years, would not impair 
the obligation of a contract made under the shorter replevin law, the like prolon- 
gation to one hundred years would not impair the obligation ; and, if this would 
not, the abrogation of all legal remedy could not. 5th. That it is impossible that 
legislation can destroy or impair the legal obligation of contracts, otherwise than by 
operating on the legal remedies for enforcing them,- and, that, consequently, any 
legislation retro-actively and essentially deteriorating legal remedy, as certainly 
and essentially impairs the legal obligation of all contracts on which it so retro- 
acts: And, finally, therefore, that the retrospective extension of replevin in 
Kentucky, was unconstitutional and void. 

Unanswerable and conclusive as this mere skeleton of the court's argument 
may be, yet the decision excited a great outcry against the judges. Their 
authority to disregard a legislative act as unconstitutional was, by many, denied, 
and they were denounced as "usurpers, tyrants, kings." At the succeeding 
session of the legislature, in the fall of 1823, a long, verbose, and empty pre- 
amble and resolutions, for addressing them out of office, were reported by John 
Rowan, to which the judges responded fully and most effectually. But after 
an able and boisterous debate, the preamble and resolutions were adopted by a 
majority less than two-thirds. The judges determined to stand or fall by the 
constitution refused to abdicate. At the next session of the legislature, in 
1824, there then being a still larger majority against the judges and their de- 
cision, but not quite two-thirds, the dominant party now became furious and 
reckless, passed an act, mis-entitled " an act to reorganize the Court of Appeals ;" 
the object and effect of which, if sustained, were to abolish the "old" constitu- 
tional "court," and substitute a "new" legislative "court." The minority in 
that legislature united in a powerful protest against the "reorganizing act," 
which, on the presentation of it to the house of representatives by George Rob- 
ertson, by whom it was written, was, unceremoniously, ordered to be entered on 
the journal of that house, without being read. A copy, however, which was 
read in the senate, was refused a place on the journal of that body, and a "new 
court" senator, coming into the other house immediately afterwards, and there 
learning that the protest had, unheard, been admitted to the journal of that house, 
told Mr. Rowan that it was "the devil," and if embalmed in the record, would 
blow " the new court party sky high." Whereupon, a reconsideration was mo- 
ved, and the memorable document was kicked out of that house also. But it 
could not be strangled. It lived and triumphed. It was published as an unan- 
swerable text, and rallied and electrified the friends of the constitution, order, 
and justice. 

The " new court " (consisting of William T. Barry, chief justice, and James 
Haggin, John Trimble, and Rezin H. Davidge, judges,) took unauthorized pos- 
session of the papers and records in the office of the Court of Appeals, appointed 
Francis P. Blair, clerk, and attempted to do business and decide some causes, 
their opinions on which, were published by Thomas B. Monroe, in a small duo- 
decimo volume, which has never been regarded or read as authority. The judges 
of the constitutional Court of Appeals were thus deprived, without their consent, 
of the means of discharging official duties properly ; and, the people not know- 
ing whether the "old " or the "new court" was the constitutional tribunal of 
revision, some appealed to the one,' and some to the other. In this perplexing cri- 
sis of judicial anarchy, the only authoritative arbiter was the ultimate sovereign 
the freemen of the Stale at the polls. To that final and only tribunal, therefore, 
both parties appealed ; and no period, in the history of Kentucky, was ever more 
pregnant, or marked with more excitement, or able and pervading discussion, 
than that which immediately preceded the annual elections in the year 1825. 


The portentous agony resulted in the election, to the house of representatives, of 
a decisive majority in favor of the " old court," and against the constitutionality 
of the "new court." But only one-third of the senators having passed the ordeal 
of that election, a small "new court" majority still remained in the senate; and, 
disregarding the submission of the question to the votes of the people, that little 
majority refused to repeal the "reorganizing act," or acknowledge the existence 
of the " old court." This unexpected and perilous contumacy, brought the antag- 
onist parties to the brink of a bloody revolution. For months the commonwealth 
was trembling on the crater of a heaving volcano. But the considerate prudence 
of the " old court party" prevented an eruption, by forbearing to resort to force 
to restore to the " old court" its papers and records, which the minority guarded, 
in Blair's custody, by military means and, also, by appealing, once more, to the 
constituent body, in a printed manifesto prepared by George Robertson, signed 
by the members constituting the majority of the popular branch of the legisla- 
ture, and exposing the incidents of the controversy and the conduct of the defeated 
party. The result of this last appeal was a majority in the senate, and an 
augmented majority in the house of representatives in favor of repealing as 
unconstitutional, the "act to reorganize the Court of Appeals." That act was 
accordingly repealed in the session of 1826-7, by " an act to remove the uncon- 
stitutional obstructions which have been thrown in the way of the Court of 
Appeals," passed by both houses the 30th December, 1826 the governor's objec- 
tions notwithstanding. The " new court" vanished, and the " old court," redeemed 
and reinstated, proceeded, without further question or obstruction, in the discharge 
of its accustomed duties. 

As soon as a quietus had been given to this agitating controversy, John Boyle, 
who had adhered to the helm throughout the storm in a forlorn hope of saving 
the constitution, resigned the chief-justiceship of Kentucky, and George M. Bibb, 
a distinguished champion of the " relief" and " new court" parties, was, by a 
relief governor and senate, appointed his successor. Owsley and Mills retained 
their seats on the appellate bench until the fall of 1828, when they also resigned, 
and, being re-nominated by Gov. Metcalfe, who had just succeeded Gov. Desha, 
they were rejected by a relief senate, and George Robertson and Joseph R. Un- 
derwood (both " anti-relief" and " old court") were appointed to succeed them. 
Then Bibb forthwith resigned, and there being no chief justice until near the 
close of 1S29, these two judges constituted the court, and, during that year, de- 
clared null and void all the acts and decisions of the " new court," and disposed 
of about one thousand cases on the docket of the Court of Appeals. In December, 
1829, Robertson was appointed chief justice, and Richard A. Buckner judge of 
the Court of Appeals. And thus, once more, " the old court " was complete, 
homogeneous and peaceful, and the most important question that could engage 
the councils or agitate the passions of a state, was settled finally, and settled 

This memorable contest between the constitution and the passions of a popular 
majority between the judicial and legislative departments proves the efficacy of 
Kentucky's constitutional structure, and illustrates the reason and the importance 
of that system of judicial independence which it guaranties. It demonstrates 
that, if the appellate judges had been dependent on a bare majority of the people 
or their representatives, the constitution would have been paralyzed, justice 
dethroned, and property subjected to rapine, by tumultuary passions and numer- 
ical power. And its incidents and results not only commend to the gratitude of 
the living and unborn, the proscribed judges and the efficient compatriots who 
dedicated their time and talents for years to the rescue of the constitution, but 
also, impressively illustrate the object and efficacy of the fundamental limitations 
in the will of the majority that is, the ultimate prevalence of reason over pas- 
sion of truth over error which, in popular governments, is the sure offspring, 
on/y, of time and sober deliberation, which it is the object of constitutional checks 
to ensure. 

As first and now organized, the Court of Appeals consists of three judges, one 
of whom is commissioned " chief justice of Kentucky." In the year 1801, the 
number was increased to four, and Thomas Todd (who had been clerk of that 
court, and in the year 1807 was appointed a judge of the Supreme Court of the 
United States) was the first who was appointed fourth judge. In the year 1813, 



the number was prospectively reduced to three; and, all the incumbents having 
immediately resigned, two of them (Boyle and Logan) were instantly re-com- 
niissioned, and Robert Trimble, who was commissioned by Gov. Shelby, havina 
declined to accept, Owsley, who had been one of the four judges who had re- 
signed, was afterwards also re-commissioned ; and ever since that time, the court 
has consisted of three judges only. 

All the judges have always received equal salaries. At first the salary of each 
judge was $666.66. In the year 1801, it was increased to $833.33 ; in the year 
1806, to $1000 ; in the year 1815, to $1500 ; in the year 1837, to $2000 ; and in 
the year 1843, it was reduced to $1500. During the prevalence of the paper of 
the Bank of the Commonwealth, the salaries were paid in that currency, which 
was so much depreciated as, for some time, to reduce the value of each salary to 
about $750. 

The following is a chronological catalogue of the names of all who have been 
judges of the Appellate Court of Kentucky: 

Harry Innis, 
George Muter, 
Thomas Todd, 
Felix Grundy, 
Ninian Edwards, 
George M. Bibb, 


com. June 28, 1792 
" Dec. 7, 1792 
Dec. 13, 1806 
April 11, 1807 


5, 1808 
30, 1809 

com. M'ch 20, 1810 
" Jan. 5, 1827 

John Boyle, 
George M. Bibb, 

George Robertson, " Dec. 24, 1829 

E. M. Ewing, " April 7, 1843 

Thos. A. Marshall, " June 1, 1847 

* Resigned Dec. 23, 1828. 

Benj. Sebastian, 
Caleb Wallace, 
Thomas Todd, 
Felix Grundy, 
Ninian Edwards, 
Robert Trimble, 
William Logan,* 
George M. Bibb, 
John Boyle, 
William Logan, 
James Clark, 

June 28, 1792 
June 28, 1792 
Dec. 19, 1801 
Dec. 10, 1806 
Dec. 13, 1806 
April 13, 1807 
Jan. 11, 1808 
Jan. 31, 1808 
April 1, 1809 
Jan. 20, 1810 
M'ch 29, 1810 

William Owsley, com. 
John Rowan, " 

Benjamin Mills, " 
George Robertson, " 
Jos. R. Underwood, " 
Richard A. Buckner, " 
Samuel S. Nicholas, " 
Ephraim M. Ewing, " 
Thos. A. Marshall, " 
Daniel Breck, " 

James Simpson, " 

April 8. 1810 
Jan. 14, 1819 
Feb. 16, 1820 
Dec. 24, 1828 
Dec. 24, 1828 
Dec. 21, 1829 
Dec. 23, 1831 
March 5, 1835 
M'ch 18, 1835 
April 7, 1843 
June 7, 1847 

* Resigned January 30,1808. 

Of the chief justices, Muter, Boyle, and Robertson were in commission, collec- 
tively, about 41 years Muter for about 11, Boyle 16, and Robertson nearly 14 
years; and of all the justices of the court, Logan, Mills, and Owsley held their 
stations longest. 

In the year 1803, Muter, very poor and rather superannuated, was induced to 
resign by a promise of an annuity of $300, which, being guarantied by an act of 
the legislature in good faith, was complained of as an odious and unconstitutional 
'provision" and was taken away by a repealing act of the next year. 

Under the first constitution of 1792, the appellate judges were required to state 
in their opinions such facts and authorities as should be necessary to expose the 
principle of each decision. But no mode of reporting the decisions was provided 
by legislative enactment until 1815, when the governor was authorized to appoint 
a reporter. Previously to that time, James Hughes, an eminent "land lawyer," 
had, at his own expense, published a volume of the decisions of the old District 
Court of Kentucky whilst an integral portion of Virginia, and of the Court of 
Appeals of Kentucky, rendered in suits for land commencing in 1785 and end- 
ing in 1801 : Achilles Sneed, clerk of the Court of Appeals, had, in 1805, under 
the authority of that court, published a small volume of miscellaneous opinions, 
copied from the court's order book; and Martin D. Hardin, a distinguished 
lawyer, had, in 1810, published a volume of the decisions from 1805 to 1808, at 
the instance of the court in execution of a legislative injunction of 1807, requiring 
! the judges to select a reporter. George M. Bibb was the first reporter appointed 
by the Governor. His reports, in four volumes, include opinions from 18 to 


18 . Alexander K. Marshall, William Littell, Thomas B. Monroe, John J. 

Marshall, James Dana, and Benjamin Monroe were, successively, appointed, and 
reported afterwards. The reports of the first, are in three volumes of the second, 
in six of the third, in seven of the fourth, in seven of the fifth, in nine and 
the last, who is yet the reporter, has published seven volumes. Consequently, 
there are now forty-six volumes of reported decisions of the Court of Appeals of 
Kentucky. Of these reports, Hardin's, Bibb's, and Dana's are most accurate 
Littell's, Thomas B. Monroe's and Ben. Monroe's next. Those of both the 
Marshall's are signally incorrect and deficient in execution. Dana's in execution 
and in the character of the cases, are generally deemed the best. Of the decis- 
ions in Dana, it has been reported of Judge Story that he said they were the best 
in the Union and of Chancellor Kent, that he said he knew no state decisions 
superior to them. And that eminent jurist, in the last edition of his Commenta- 
ries, has made frequent reference to opinions of chief justice Robertson, and has 
commended them in very flattering terms. 

The comprehensive jurisdiction of the court imposes upon it duties peculiarly 
onerous. An act of Assembly of 179'6, confers on this Appellate Court jurisdic- 
tion of appeal or writ of error, " in cases in which the inferior courts have juris- 
diction." A writ of error may be issued to reverse a judgment or decree for one 
cent ; but, by an act of 1796, no appeal can be prosecuted to reverse a judgment 
or decree, unless it relate to a franchise or freehold, or (if it do not) unless the 
amount of it, "exclusive of costs," be at least $100. But in cases of decretal 
divorces, and in fines for riots and routs, the legislature has denied to the court 
any revising jurisdiction. Still, although it has no original jurisdiction excepting 
only in the trial of clerks, and although it has no criminal jurisdiction in any 
case of felony, the average number of its annual decisions has, for many years, 
been about five hundred. The court is required to hold two terms in each year 
one commencing the first Monday in May, the other the first Monday in Septem- 
ber; and no term is allowed to be less than forty-eight juridical days. By a rule 
of court, any party may appear either by himself or his counsel, and in person or 
by brief. And a majority of the cases have been decided without oral argument. 

A statute of 1816 enacted, that "all reports of cases decided in England since 
the 4th of July, 1776, should not be read in court or cited by the court." The 
object of this strange enactment was to interdict the use of any British decision 
since the declaration of American independence. The statute, however, literally 
imports, not that no such decision shall be read, but that " //" shall not be. And 
this self-destructive phraseology harmonises with the purpose of the act that is, 
to smother the Fight of science and stop the growth of jurisprudence. But for 
many years, the Court of Appeals inflexibly enforced the statute not in its let- 
ter, but in its aim. In the reports, however, of J. J. Marshall, and Dana, and 
Ben. Monroe, copious references are made (without regard to this interdict) to 
post-revolutionary cases and treatises in England, and now that statute may be 
considered dead. 

The Appellate Court of Kentucky has generally been able, and always firm, 
pure, and faithful. It has been illustrated by some names that would adorn any 
bench of justice or age of jurisprudence. And it might have been oftener filled 
by such jurists, had not a suicidal parsimony withheld from the judges an ade- 
quate compensation for the talents, learning, labor, and responsibility which the 
best interests of the commonwealth demand for the judicial service, in a court 
appointed to guard the rights and the liberties of the people, and to settle con- 
clusively the laws of the commonwealth. 



THE Baptists were the pioneers of religion in Kentucky. They came with the 
earliest permanent settlers. In 1776, William Hickman, sr., commenced here his 
labors in the Gospel ministry.* He was the first to proclaim "the unsearchable 
riches of Christ," in the valley of the Kentucky. He was on a tour of observation 
merely, and after a stay of several months, returned to Virginia, remained several 
years, and then located in this state, where he labored faithfully in the field of 
the gospel for more than fifty years. In 1779, John Taylor, Joseph Reding, 
Lewis Lunsford, (the Patrick Henry of the pulpit), and several other ministers 
of Virginia, visited Kentucky. They found many of their brethren, but owing 
to the constant alarm from savage depredations, and the other stirring incidents 
peculiar to new settlements amid the wilds of a strange and unbroken forest, 
there seemed to be but little concern manifested for religion. These ministers 
had but few opportunities for preaching. They did preach, however, at a few of 
the stations. Their object was chiefly to see the country, with reference to sub- 
sequent settlement. They found it destitute of almost everything except grass 
for their horses, and meat from the woods, procured at the risk of life. They 
could do but little more than feast their eyes upon the luxuriant soil, which the 
Indians had resolved should never be cultivated. f These ministers, except Red- 
ing, returned to Virginia, but some of them, a few years later, took permanent 
residence in Kentucky. 

In 1780, many Baptists removed to this state, chiefly from Virginia; but it was 
not until the next year, that there was an organized church. This was the Gil- 
bert's creek church. When Lewis Craig left Spottsylvania county, Va., most of 
his large church there came with him. They were constituted when they started, 
and were an organized church on the road wherever they stopped, they could 
transact church business. They settled at Craig's station on Gilbert's creek, a 
few miles east of where the town of Lancaster, Garrard county, is now situated.^: 
There were now a number of efficient ministers in Kentucky. 

In 1782, several other churches are known to have been constituted, viz : Sev- 
ern's valley,|| (now Elizabethtown), and Nolynn, both now in Hardin county. 
Also Cedar creek, now in Nelson county . 

In 1783, the first Baptist church and the first worshiping assembly of any 
order, was organized on South Elkhorn, five miles south of Lexington, by Lewis 
Craig, principally out of members dismissed from the church on Gilbert's creek. 
This church was for forty years one of the most prosperous churches in the state ; 
but its candlestick has been removed.** 

After the close of the American Revolution, a flood of Baptists poured into 
Kentucky, chiefly from Virginia, and churches began to spring up every where 
in the wilderness. It was still a time of great peril. Before houses of worship 
were erected, the worshipers would assemble in the forest, each man with his 
gun ; sentinels would be placed to guard against surprise from the Indians, while 
the minister, with a log or stump for his pulpit, and the heavens for his sounding 
board, would dispense the word of life and salvation. 

" The groves were God's first temples. Ere man learned 
To hew the shaft, and lay the architrave, 
And spread the roof above them, ere he framed 
The lofty vault, to gather and roll back 
The sound of anthems, in the darkling wood, 

* John Taylor's History of Ten Churches, p. 48. || Benedict, vol. 2, p. 542. 

t Benedict's History of the Baptists, vol. 2, p. 228. Asplund's Register of 1790, p. 32. 

I History of Ten Churches, p. 42. ' ** History of Ten Churches, p. 50. 


Amidst the cool and silence, he knelt down, 
And offered to the Mightiest solemn thanks 
And supplications."* 

In 1785, three associations were organized, viz. : The ELKMORN, comprising 
all the regular Baptist churches then north of the Kentucky and Dix rivers ; the 
SALEM, comprising all the churches of the same order south of those rivers ; and 
the SOUTH KENTUCKY, comprising all the separate Baptist churches in the State. 
These associations, which were constituted of some three or four churches each, 
increased with great rapidity. In 1790, there were attached to them 42 churches 
and 3105 members; viz.: Elkhorn, 15 churches and 1389 members; Salem, 8 
churches and 405 members: and South Kentucky, 19 churches and 1311 members. 
The population of Kentucky at that period was about 73,000. So there was 
one Baptist to about every twenty-three inhabitants. Besides, there were ^many 
churches not yet associated; and many members just moved into the state, who 
were not yet attached to the churches. There were, too, at this period, 42 or- 
dained ministers and 21 licentiates; of one ordained minister to every 1825 of the 
inhabitants. This was a tolerably fair proportion of Baptist leaven to the whole 
lump of people.f 

Among the ministers of that day, were John Gano, Ambrose Dudley, John 
Taylor, Lewis Craig, William Hickman, Joseph Reding, William E. Waller, 
Augustine Eastin, Moses Bledsoe, John Rice, Elijah Craig, William Marshall, 
and other kindred spirits men of ardent piety, untiring zeal, indomitable energy 
of character, of vigorous and well-balanced intellects, and in every way adapted 
to the then state of society. Pioneers to a wilderness beset with every danger 
and every privation, they were the first ministers of the brave, the daring, and 
noble spirits who first settled and subdued this country such men as the Boones. 
the Clarkes, the Harrods, the Bullitts, the Logans, the Floyds, and the Hardins 
would respect and venerate, and listen to with delight and profit. It has been the 

ood fortune of the writer to hear some of these venerable ministers preach, 
ome of them survived many years the men of their own generation. But age 
seemed to bring to them few of its infirmities. They retained almost to the last 
the vigor of their manhood's prime ; and although they could not be called lite- 
rary men, they were nevertheless distinguished for their intelligence, for com- 
manding talents, for profound acquaintance with the doctrines of the Bible, and 
were possessed of a knowledge of men and things, which eminently qualified 
them to be teachers and guides of the people. 

In 1793, an attempt was made to bring about a union between the Regular and 
Separate Baptists, which failing of success, sundry churches of the South Ken- 
tucky association withdrew from that body, and organized the TATE'S CREEK as- 
sociation.}: The oldest churches in this association were organized at the dates 
following: Tate's creek, now in Madison county, 1785 ; White Oak, in the 
same county, 1790 ;|| and Cedar creek, now Crab Orchard, Lincoln county, 

In 1798, the number of churches in the Elkhorn association being 33, and its 
territory extending from the Holstein on the south, to Columbus, Ohio, on the 
north; and from the mouth of Beargrass on the west, to the Virginia line on the 
east, it was deemed expedient to dismiss the churches north of Licking river for 
the purpose of forming a new organization; and accordingly the BRACKEN asso- 
ciation was constituted. The oldest churches in this association are, Limestone 
creek** (now extinct), near the present city of Maysville, and Washington, both 
constituted in 1785 ; and Mayslick church, constituted 1791. ff 

The general harmony of the denomination was undisturbed, and their pro- 
gress steady and healthful. In 1799, commenced what is known to this day as 
the Great Revival, which continued through several years. During its prevalence, 
the accessions to the churches in. every part of the state were unprecedented. The 
Baptists escaped almost entirely those extraordinary and disgraceful scenes pro- 
duced by the/er/cs, the rolling and the barking exercises, &c., which extensively 
obtained among some other persuasions of those days. The work among the 

* Bryant. || Benedict, vol. 2, p. 540. 

t Asplund's Register, p. 33. Asplund, p, 32. **Ibid. 

J Benedict, vol. 2., p. 238. ft Benedict, ut supra. 


Baptists was deep, solemn, and powerful ; but comporting with that decency and 
order so emphatically enjoined in the scriptures. During this revival, large ad- 
ditions were made to the churches in every quarter of the State. The Elkhorn 
association, at its annual meeting in 1801, reported an addition of 3011 members 
by baptism during the current year ; and in 1802, an accession of twelve churches 
was reported, making the whole number of members, 5310. So numerous were 
the churches, and so extensive still were the boundaries, it was thought advisable 
again to divide the association, and accordingly those churches lying along the 
Ohio river, west of the Bracken association, were dismissed and organized into 
the NORTH BEND association. 

To the South Kentucky, the accessions were almost equal to those of the Elk- 
horn association. It too became of such unwieldy dimensions, as to demand a 
division. It was accordingly separated into two bodies, in 1802 ; the part north 
of the Kentucky river being denominated the NORTH DISTRICT association, and 
the part south of the river, the SOUTH DISTRICT association. 

The Tate's creek association reported in 1801, the addition of 1148 members 
by baptism. The Salem association also shared largely in the blessings of this 
revival. It received upwards of 2000 members. Its boundaries were extended 
north of Salt river, where enough churches were gathered to justify the organiza- 
tion of the LONG RUN association in 1803.* 

The GREEN RIVER association, lying in what are now Warren, Barren, Green, 
and Adair counties, was constituted in 1800, about the beginning of the Great 
Revival in that section of the state. It contained at first, nine churches, eight 
ministers, and about three hundred and fifty members. The very first year of its 
existence, it increased to more than one thousand members, and in 1804, it con- 
tained 38 churches, and comprised so much territory that it was deemed sound 
policy to divide it into three bodies. The middle portion of the churches retained 
the old name of the association : those of the northern portion were organized 
into the RUSSEL'S CREEK association : and those of the southern portion, into the 
STOCKTON'S VALLEY association.! 

This revival had the happy effect to bring about a union between the RKGULAR 
and SEPARATE Baptists. These distinctive names were imported from Virginia, 
and mean the same as those of Particular and General Baptists in England the 
former meaning those who hold to Calvinistic, and the latter those holding Ar- 
minian sentiments. Several unsuccessful efforts had been made to effect a union 
between the Regular and Separate Baptists in Kentucky ; but the Great Revival 
removed all obstacles. Melted into love by its influences, these kindred parties 
then mingled into one. In 1801, terms of union previously agreed upon by a 
committee appointed for the purpose, were ratified by the two parties in their 
respective associations. The names Regular and Separate were henceforth to 
be laid aside, and that of the United Baptists used in their stead. Thus was con- 
summated the " General Union." 

But the harsh note of discord was heard just as the sweet melody of revival and 
brotherly love began to subside, and ere they had ceased. In 1796, James Gar- 
rard, a Baptist minister and a member of Cooper's run church, Bourbon county, 
was elected Governor of Kentucky. He appointed to the office of secretary of 
state, Harry Toulmin, who had been a follower of Dr. Priestly in England, and 
a minister of the Unitarian persuasion. Mr. Toulmin was a gentleman of talents 
and erudition.:}: It was owing perhaps to the intimacy existing between Gov. 
Garrard and Secretary Toulmin, arising in part from their official relations, that 
the former became tinctured with Unitarian sentiments. Be that as it may, it is 
certain that in 1802, Mr. Garrard and the pastor of Cooper's run church, Augus- 
tine Eastin, a minister of considerable eminence, began to propagate Arian, or 
rather, Socinian sentiments. The majority of Cooper's run church, and several 
neighboring churches to which Mr. Eastin preached, espoused the doctrines of 
Garrard and their ministers. Every effort was made to reclaim these individuals 
and churches. The Elkhorn association promptly attended to the case, but failing 
to effect their return to the old paths, reluctantly dropped them from connection 
and correspondence. It may be recorded to the credit of this association, and of 

* Benedict, vol. 2. pp. 230-244. $ Butler's History of Kentucky, p. 262. 

t Ib. p. 239. 


the Baptists, that although Garrard and Eastin were much beloved, and of pow- 
erful influence, yet they could take but a very inconsiderable fraction with them, 
which declined gradually and noiselessly away. Unitarianism could never obtain 
favor with the Baptists.* 

About the same time, in the South District association, a very popular minister, 
John Bayley, embraced the sentiments of the Restorationists. He was generally 
believed to be a very pious man, and the majority of the association was devo- 
tedly attached to him; and insisted, that although he preached this doctrine, yet 
he did it in such a manner as not to offend the most delicate ear. The minority, 
however, thought differently, refused all fellowship for him and his adherents, and 
claimed to be the association. The neighboring associations acknowledged their 
claim : the other party could not obtain any countenance from the associations 
in the General Union, and again assumed the old name of the South Kentucky 
association of Separate Baptists.")" 

About 1804, Carter Tarrant, David Barrow, John Sutton, Donald Holmes, Ja- 
cob Gregg, George Smith, and other ministers of less note, with many of their 
members, declared for the abolition -of slavery ; alledging that no fellowship 
should be extended to slaveholders, as slavery, in every branch of it, both in 
principle and practice, was a sinful and abominable system, fraught with peculiar 
evils and miseries, which every good man ought to abandon and bear testimony 
against. They called themselves " Friends of Humanity," but are known in the 
records of those times by the name of " Emancipators." The associations 
generally declared it " improper for ministers, churches, or associations to meddle 
with the emancipation of slavery, or any other political subject; and advised 
them to have nothing to do with it in their religious capacity." These resolu- 
tions gave great offence to the "Friends of Humanity;" and they withdrew from 
the General Union of Baptists, and in 1807, formed an association of their own, 
called "The Baptized Licking-Locust Association, Friends to Humanity." They 
were quite numerous at first, but they soon dwindled consumed in the fires of 
their own zeal. Not a vestige of them remains.:}: 

In 1809, a respectable and highly influential portion of the ministers and 
churches of the Elkhorn association withdrew, not only from that body, but from 
the General Union of Baptists in the state, and organized the " LICKING ASSO- 
CIATION OF PARTICULAR BAPTISTS." This schism had its foundation in a personal 
difficulty between Jacob Creath and Thomas Lewis, about a negro trade! The 
former was pastor, and the latter a member of the Town-fork church, a few miles 
west of Lexington. The matter was not suffered to remain in the church where 
it properly belonged ; it became a topic of general conversation, and of the 
printing press ; other churches became involved in it; it gathered other matters 
in its progress ; when finally, it was thrust upon the association, and schism 
ensued. || 

But notwithstanding these adverse events, the course of the Baptists was on- 
ward. They were refreshed with many revival seasons. In 1812, they had 13 
associations, 285 churches, 183 ministers, and 22,694 members. The population 
of the state at that time was rising 400,000. So that the proportion of the Bap- 
tists to that of the inhabitants was about one to twenty. 

During the next twenty years, no event transpired among the Baptists deemed 
of sufficient consequence to claim a notice in this brief sketch, except the schism 
produced by what is generally known as the " reformation," begun and carried 
on by Alexander Campbell. This is not the place nor the occasion to discuss the 
principles involved in that unfortunate controversy. Suffice it to say, that in 1829, 
and for several years thereafter, until 1832, a great many divisions in associations 
and churches occurred. But in spite of all this, the Baptists stood firm, and 
still retained their accustomed ratio to the population of the state. In 1832, after 
this storm had spent its fury, after the greatest secession from the Baptist ranks 
ever known in their history in Kentucky, they had 33 associations, 484 churches, 
236 ordained ministers, and 34,124 members. The population of the state, by 
the census of 1830, was 687,917 so that the Baptists still retained their propor- 
tion of about one to twenty of the inhabitants.** 

* Benedict, vol. 2, p. 231 . || Benedict, vol. 2, p. 233-4. 

t Ib., 241. Benedict, vol. 2.. p. 545. and Bap. Mem'l. Feb. 1846, p. 54. 

% Baptist Herald of 1814, p. 80. ** Baptist Memorial, ut supra, p. 55. 


The depletion proved to be sanative. The increase of the Baptists since then 
has been unprecedented. Disturbed by no serious discord, if we except the 
clamor raised against missionary and other benevolent efforts, they have been 
blessed with many remarkable instances of divine favor. In the next ten years 
they had doubled their numbers ! But it is not in this way alone that they have 
been the most blessed. They have been aroused to every good work. They have 
engaged, with considerable zeal, in the cause of missions, foreign and domestic. 
They have now a GENERAL ASSOCIATION, for the purpose of aiding weak churches, 
and of supplying the destitute portions of the state with the gospel. They have 
also a state society for foreign missions ; and a state bible society for the circula- 
tion of the holy scriptures in all lands. The board of the American Indian mis- 
sion association is located in Louisville. They have a weekly newspaper and a 
monthly magazine published in the state. The subject of education, too, has 
engrossed a large share of their attention. The Georgetown college is under 
their patronage, and is one of the most respectable and flourishing literary insti- 
tutions in the West. The Western Theological institute of the Baptists is situa- 
ted in Covington. We have not the means of arriving at the precise number of 
Baptists now (March 1847), in the state; but there are in the General Union, 42 
associations, 685 churches, and at least 65,000 members. To these add the 
7,085 anti-missionary Baptists, many of whom claim to be United Baptists, and 
differ from the great body of their brethren only in relation to the propriety of 
missionary and kindred institutions, and we have the present grand total of the 
Baptists in Kentucky, 72,085 members, which we are sure falls under the actual 
number. The proportion of the Baptists to the population of the state may safely 
be set down at one to eleven. Thus it will be seen that the Baptists have steadily 
and rapidly increased that they have come triumphantly through every trial. 
Hitherto hath the Lord helped them. 

In looking over the list of the early Baptist ministers, the pioneers of the gos- 
pel in our state, we cannot choose one for a biographical sketch, agreeably to the 
suggestion of the compiler of this work. Out of a host equally deserving, it 
would be invidious to make a selection. Besides, the brief space that remains 
for us, would not allow of justice to any one of them. We will therefore let it 
suffice to submit some characteristic anecdotes and sketches of several of them. 

WILLIAM HICKMAN, as the first preacher in Kentucky, claims of course, the 
first attention. He commenced his ministry in this state. Then he returned to 
Virginia, and for several years labored there with great success. In 1784, he be- 
came a permanent resident in the state. Here he encountered peculiar trials. 
The country was sparsely populated, while tribes of wandering savages were 
continually making depredations on the property and lives of the settlers. But 
Mr. Hickman was not silent because of danger. He traveled extensively, and 
even in the most distant and exposed settlements, and at the peril of his life, bore 
the tidings of salvation. Elder John Taylor said of him in 1822, " Though now 
about 76 years of age, he walks and stands erect as a palm tree, being at least 
six feet high, and of rather slender form. His whole deportment is solemn and 
grave, and is much like Caleb, the servant of the Lord, who at fourscore years 
of age was as capable to render service in war, as when young. This veteran 
can yet perform a good part in the gospel vineyard. His style of preaching is 
plain and solemn, and the sound of it like thunder in the distance ; but when he 
becomes animated, it is like thunder at home, and operates with prodigious force 
on the consciences of his hearers." He was pastor a number of years to the 
church at the " Forks of Elkhorn." He baptised, it is thought, as many persons 
as any minister that ever labored in the state. 

LEWIS CRAIG was the founder of the first worshipping congregation in Ken- 
tucky. He had been a valiant champion of the cause in Virginia. He was sev- 
eral times imprisoned in that state for preaching the gospel. The first time, he 
was arrested in company with several other ministers. The prosecuting attorney 
represented them to be a great annoyance to the county by their zeal as preachers. 
" May it please your worships," said he, " they cannot meet a man upon the road, 
but they must ram a text of scripture down his throat." As they passed on to 
prison, through the streets of Fredericksburgh, they united in singing the lines, 
" Broad is the road that leads to death," &c. 


They remained in prison one month, and while there, Mr. C. preached through the 
grate to large crowds, and was the means of doing much good. Once after this, he 
was imprisoned three months. Mr. Taylor says of him, " He was in the gospel 
ministry near sixty years, and was about eighty-seven when he gave up the ghost. 
As an expositor of scripture, he was not very skillful, but dealt closely with the 
heart. He was better acquainted with men than with books. He never dwelt 
much on doctrine, but most on experimental and practical godliness. ^Though he 
was not called a great preacher, perhaps there was never found in Kentucky so 
great a gift of exhortation as in Lewis Craig : the sound of his voice would make 
men tremble and rejoice. The first time I heard him preach, I seemed to hear 
the sound of his voice for many months. He was of middle stature, rather 
stoop shouldered, his hair black, thick set and somewhat curled, a pleasant coun- 
tenance, free spoken, and his company very interesting ; a great peace-maker 
among contending parties. He died suddenly, of which he was forewarned, 
saying, I am going to such a house to die ; and with solemn joy he went on to the 
house, and with little pain, left the world." 

JOHN TAYLOR was well qualified to labor as a pioneer, having learned by pre- 
vious hazards in Virginia, to endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. 
When first settled in Kentucky, he itinerated for ten years with much credit to 
himself, and profit to the cause. He had a fine constitution and much bodily 
strength; was as bold as a lion, yet meek as a lamb. In preaching, he attempted 
nothing but scriptural plainness. The weapons of his warfare were wielded with 
much power. No man knew better than he, how to reprove, rebuke, and exhort, 
with all long suffering and doctrine. When he used the rod of correction, all 
were made to tremble. He was very efficient as a preacher. His judicious 
zeal, strong faith, and remarkable industry, qualified him to be useful to many 
souls. He was always cheerful, yet solemn, and willing to preach when reques- 
ted. His whole demeanor, at home and abroad, was uniformly Christian-like. 
The labors of his ministry extended from the Kentucky to the Ohio river. It 
was his custom to visit six or eight associations every year. His great skill in 
discipline and faithfulness in preaching endeared him to all the followers of 
Christ. He lived to see his children and his children's children rise up and call 
him blessed. He died in his 82d year.* 

JOHN GANO settled in Kentucky in 1787. He was one of the most eminent 
ministers in his day. He was a native of New Jersey. He spent many years 
as an itinerant, traveling over the United States, from New England to Georgia. 
He was pastor for about twenty-five years in the city of New York, and his la- 
bors were greatly blessed. During the revolutionary war, he was chaplain to the 
army, and by his counsels and prayers greatly encouraged the American soldiery 
in those times of peril which tried men's souls. Many interesting anecdotes are 
related of him, several of which we will quote from Benedict. One morning, 
while in the army and on his way to pray with the regiment, he passed by a 
group of officers, one of whom (who had his back towards him) was uttering his 
profane expressions in a most rapid manner. The officers, one after another, 
gave him the usual salutation. " Good morning, Doctor," said the swearing 
Lieutenant. " Good morning, sir," replied the chaplain ; " you pray early this 
morning." " I beg your pardon, sir." " 0, I cannot pardon you : carry your 
case to your God." 

One day he was standing near some soldiers who were disputing whose turn 

it was to cut some wood for the fire. One profanely said, he would be d d 

if he cut it. But he was soon afterwards convinced that the task belonged to 
him, and took up the axe to perform it. Before, however, he could commence, 
Mr. Gano stepped up and asked for the axe. " ! no," said the soldier, " the 
chaplain shan't cut wood." "Yes," replied Mr. Gano, " I must." " But why?" 
asked the soldier. " The reason is," answered Mr. G., "I just heard you say that 

you would be d d if you cut it, and I had much rather take the labor off your 

hands, than that you should be made miserable forever." 

While he resided in New York, he was introduced to a young lady as the 

* Lives of Virginia Baptist Ministers, p. 220. 



daughter of a very prominent citizen. "Ah ! " replied he, " and I can tell a good 
match for her, and he is an only son." The young lady understood his meaning; 
she was, not long after, united to this Son, and has, for about forty years, been 
an ornament to his cause. 

Dr. Furman, of Charleston, S. C., who knew him intimately, says : |'As 
a minister of Christ, he shone like a star of the first magnitude in the American 
churches, and moved in a widely extended field of action. For this office, God 
had endowed him with a large portion of grace, and with excellent gifts. He 
believed, and therefore spa/re." Having discerned the excellence of gospel truths, 
and the importance of eternal realities, he felt their power on his own soul, and 
accordingly he inculcated and urged them on the minds of his hearers with per- 
suasive eloquence and force. He was not deficient in doctrinal discussion, or 
what rhetoricians style the demonstrative character of a discourse ; but he ex- 
celled in the pathetic in pungent, forcible addresses to the heart and conscience. 
The careless and irreverent were suddenly arrested, and stood awed before him, 
and the insensible were made to feel. * * * * He lived to a good old age ; 
served his generation according to the will of God ; saw his posterity multiply- 
ing around him ; his country independent, free, and happy ; the church of Christ, 
for which he felt and labored, advancing; and thus he closed his eyes in peace ; 
his heart expanding with the sublime hope of immortality and heavenly bliss. 
Like John, the harbinger of our Redeemer, " he was a burning and a shining 
light, and many rejoiced in his light." Resembling the sun, he arose in the 
church with morning brightness, advanced regularly to his station of meridian 
splendor, and then gently declined with mild effulgence, till he disappeared* 
without a cloud to intercept his rays, or obscure his glory." 

Such were some of the early ministers of Kentucky. They are but examples 
of the dispositions, and talents, and high moral worth of their companions and 
compeers, a sketch of whom we must omit, and who aided these to unfurl the ban- 
ner of the cross in the valley of the Kentucky, and to maintain it against every 
danger and privation. The Christians of this State may as proudly refer to their 
ancestors, in all that is noble and elevating in man, as may the politician. If 
theirs were mighty in battle and wise in counsel, ours were no less so, and in a 
nobler sense, because in a higher and holier enterprise. 




THIS institution, located at Harrodsburg, Ky., was chartered by the common- 
wealth of Kentucky in the winter of 1836-7. Though it has not yet completed 
the tenth year of its existence, and has had to contend with no ordinary difficul- 
ties, it has already secured an enviable reputation, and is making steady progress 
in gaining the confidence of the public. The course of studies is equal to that 
which is generally adopted in the best regulated American colleges ; and the of- 
ficers, without exception, have had long and successful experience in the busi- 
ness of teaching. The following is a list of the 



James Shannon, President, and Professor of Intellectual, Moral, and Political 

Samuel Hatch, Professor of Chemistry, Natural Philosophy, Geology, &c. 
Henry H. White, Professor of Mathematics and Civil Engineering. 
George H. Matthews, Professor of Ancient Languages. 
E. Askew, Teacher of the Preparatory Department. 

During the last session, one hundred and thirteen students were received into 
Bacon college, from the states of Kentucky, Virginia, Georgia, Alabama, Mis- 
sissippi, Lousiana, Indiana, Ohio, and New York. About the same number have 
already been received the present session, with a reasonable prospect of a large 
increase. Tuition for the college year of ten months is forty dollars, with an 
extra charge for fuel of one dollar each half session. 

Boarding can be had in respectable families, in the town and its vicinity, at 
rates varying from one dollar and seventy-five cents to two dollars per week ; so 
that the whole cost of boarding and tuition for the college year of forty-two 
weeks need not exceed one hundred and fifteen dollars. 

The session begins on the first Monday in September, and ends on the last 
Friday in June, which is the annual commencement. 

Connected with the Institution, are two literary and debating societies, each of 
which has a respectable library. Whole number of volumes in the libraries per- 
taining to the college about sixteen hundred. 

In Bacon college the authority of Christianity is fully recognized ; but nothing 
that savors in any degree of a sectarian character is either taught or required. 
The institution was established by the Christian churches of Kentucky, and 
from them it derives its principal support. Efficient aid has also been received, 
at various times, from men of liberal and enlightened minds, who are not mem- 
bers of any religious society. 

Jit a general meeting of the Christian Churches in Kentucky, held at 

Harrodsburg, in May, 1834, 

An agent was appointed to visit the churches, ascertain the number of members 
in each congregation, and collect such other information as he might deem im- 
portant, and report the result at the next general meeting. The following extract 
is taken from this 


" I find in the state 380 congregations, with an aggregate number of 33,830 
members ; average number 83 and a fraction. 

" Number of additions reported for twelve months prior to receiving the report 
from each church, 3,678 ; number since reported, 206 ; total number of additions 
reported, 3,884. It must be remarked, however, that these additions go back as 
far as June 1st, 1843 ; yet, as the report is for 12 months prior to collecting the 
items from each church, my returns, with the exception of the 206, show but the 
increase for one year. It must also be remarked, that many of the churches report 
no increase at all, owing mainly to the fact, that the information was collected 
from individuals unacquainted with this item. I have no doubt, could the in- 
crease have been obtained from all the churches, it would exceed four thousand. 

" Number of elders reported, 666; number of deacons, 676; number of preach- 
ers, evangelist and local, 195. 

" Of the 380 churches, 163 meet for worship every Lord's day ; and, in many 
places, three times on Lord's day, and several times through the week ; 68 meet 
semi-monthly, 6 tri-monthly, 92 monthly, and 51 did not report this item. A 
large majority of those that meet monthly and semi-monthly, would meet every 
Lord's day, but are prevented in consequence of holding houses of worship in 
partnership with others. 

" I deem it important to state, that 136 of these churches have been organized 
within the last four and a half years." 

As the average time that has elapsed, since the foregoing information was col- 
lected, exceeds two years, a moderate estimate of the increase to the present 


date (Dec. 1846), will give an aggregate number of 41,186. This calculation is 
based upon the hypothesis, that the annual increase for the last two years has 
barely equalled the ascertained increase for twelve months prior to the collection 
of the statistics embodied in the report. It is confidently believed that this esti- 
mate falls considerably below the truth. 

The churches aforesaid are unanimous in repudiating- human creeds and un- 
scriptural names ; believing that the Bible is ordained of God to be the only 
authoritative, as it is the only infallible rule of faith and practice ; and that all 
unscriptural names, and all ecclesiastical organizations, not established by the 
inspired Apostles, are unlawful, and, in their very nature, sectarian and divisive. 

Influenced by these views, they call themselves Christians, or Disciples of 
Christ, and feel religiously bound to repudiate all names, that are not applied in 
the New Testament to those, who " have been baptized into Christ," and have 
thus "put on Christ." To believe what God says, and to do what he commands, 
they regard as the sum total of human duty ; nor do they believe that any man 
is authorized to hope for an admission into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord 
and Savior Jesus Christ, except as he is using his best powers, day by day, to 
purify himself from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, and to perfect holiness 
in the fear of God. When the believer obeys God's commands, then, but not 
till then, do they conceive, that he has a right to appropriate God's promises. 
Consequently, when the penitent believer confesses Christ before men, and from 
the heart bows to his authority, being baptized in obedience to his command, he 
has a right to appropriate to himself all those promises that are made to baptized 
believers as such ; but he has, even then, no right to hope for a continuance of 
the divine favor, except so far as he makes it the business of his life to know the 
will of God, and to do that will in all things. 

For all purposes of discipline and government, they regard the individual 
church as the highest, and indeed the only ecclesiastical organization recognized 
in the New Testament. "As for associations, conferences, conventions, &c., 
presuming to act under the sanctions of a divine warrant, or claiming to be a 
court of Jesus Christ, or to decide on any matters of conscience, or to do any act 
or deed interfering with, or in opposition to, the perfect independenc of each indi- 
vidual congregation, or at all legislating for the churches in any district of the 
country," they regard it as " altogether foreign to the letter and spirit to the 

Srecepts and examples to the law and to the testimony of the Christian books." 
ne and all, they profess to be engaged in persevering efforts for the union of 
all saints, by the restoration of unsectarian Christianity in faith and practice, as 
it is found, pure and unpolluted, on the pages of the New Testament. 

Among the host of worthies, living and dead, who have co-operated hitherto 
in this grand enterprise, the name of Alexander Campbell stands deservedly 
pre-eminent. Others may have preceded him, and no doubt did, in repudiating 
human creeds and adopting the bible as the only and all-sufficient rule of 
faith and practice ; of union, communion, and co-operation among the fol- 
lowers of the Lamb. Others may have been more successful, and no doubt 
were, as proclaimers of the Gospel, in making proselytes to the cause, and add- 
ing members to the various churches. But, as a master spirit, exciting investi- 
gation, overturning antiquated prejudices, enlightening the master spirits of the 
age, and setting them to work, each in his own sphere, it is the deliberate opinion 
of a mighty host, that, in the current reformation of the nineteenth century, Al- 
exander Campbell has no equal. On this subject the venerable and beloved 
Barton W. Stone, in 1843, and shortly before his death, remarks "I will not 
say there are no faults in brother Campbell ; but that there are fewer, perhaps, 
in him, than any man I know on earth ; and over these few my love would draw 
a veil, and hide them from view forever. I am constrained, and willingly con- 
strained to acknowledge him the greatest promoter of this reformation of any man 
living. The Lord reward him !" 

The writer of this article applied to President Campbell for facts and docu- 
ments, that might furnish the basis of a short biographical sketch, and received 
for reply the following information " Averse to autobiography, and to giving a 
man's biography while living, I have left the task for one who may survive me." 

A few leading facts, however, may be noted for the information of the reader. 
Alexander Campbell was born, about the year 1787 or 8, in the county of Down, 


in the north of Ireland, where he spent the first fourteen years of his life, and 
was then removed to Scotland, the land of his fathers, to complete his education 
for the Presbyterian ministry. In 1309 he came to America with his father, El- 
der Thomas Campbell, who is still living. Naturally of an independent and 
investigating mind, he soon became convinced that infant sprinkling is unscrip- 
tural, and was forthwith baptized upon a profession of his faith. Prosecuting 
his inquiries still farther, he soon discovered that he had imbibed many other 
doctrines unauthorised by the Scriptures, and contrary to them. All such he 
relinquished without delay, having nobly resolved, that he would sacrifice every 
thing for the truth, but the truth for nothing. 

In allusion to this part of his life, he remarks, in the conclusion of the Chris- 
tian Baptist " Having been educated as Presbyterian clergymen generally are, 
and looking forward to the ministry as both an honorable and useful calling, all 
my expectations and prospects in future life were, at the age of twenty-one, iden- 
tified with the office of the ministry. But scarcely had I begun to make sermons, 
when I discovered that the religion of the New Testament was one thing, and 
that of any sect which I knew was another. I could not proceed. An unsuccessful 
effort by my father to reform the presbytery and synod to which he belonged, made 
me despair of reformation. I gave it up as a hopeless effort, but did not give up 
speaking in public assemblies upon the great articles of Christian faith and 
practice. In the hope, the humble hope, of erecting a single congregation, with 
which I could enjoy the social institutions, I labored. I had not the remotest idea 
of being able to do more than this ; and, therefore, betook myself to the occupa- 
tion of a farmer, and for a number of years attended to this profession for a sub- 
sistence, and labored every Lord's day to separate the truth from the traditions of 
men, and to persuade men to give up their fables for the truth with but little 
success I labored." 

In 1816 he was urged by some of the most influential Baptists in New York 
and Philadelphia, to settle in one of those cities, but declined alledging in justi- 
fication of his course, that he did not think the church in either city would sub- 
mit to the primitive order of things ; and rather than produce divisions among 
them, or adopt their order, he " would live and die in the backwoods." 

In August 1823, soon after the Debate with MacCalla, he commenced the pub- 
lication of the " Christian Baptist," a monthly pamphlet, the design of which 
was " to restore a pure speech to the people of God to restore the ancient order 
of things in the Christian kingdom to emancipate the conscience from the do- 
minion of human authority in matters of religion and to lay a foundation an 
imperishable foundation, for the union of all Christians, and for their co-operation 
in spreading the glorious gospel throughout the world." 

In the debate aforesaid, Mr. Campbell contended that " baptism was a divine 
institution, designed for putting the legitimate subject of it in actual possession 
of the remission of his sins," In January 1828, he remarks, " It was with much 
hesitation I presented this view of the subject at that time, because of its perfect 
novelty. I was then assured of its truth, and, I think, presented sufficient evi- 
dence of its certainty. But having thought still more closely upon the subject, 
and having been necessarily called to consider it more fully, as an essential part 
of the Christian religion, I am still better prepared to develop its import." 

From the time of the debate, baptism for the remission of sins seems to have 
been but little agitated, if at all publicly, till 1827. In that year Walter Scott 
and John Secrest began to preach in the bounds of the Mahoning association, 
Ohio, the apostolic doctrine of remission, recorded in Acts 2d, 38. The effect 
was astounding to the advocates of the worn-out and powerless systems of human 
origin. During the last six months of the year, Elder Secrest immersed with 
his own hands for the remission of sins, " five hundred and thirty persons." 

The writer has not the means of ascertaining exactly how many were im- 
mersed during the year by the pious, indefatigable, and talented Walter Scott. 
It is certain, however, that he converted and baptized a mighty host more, per- 
haps, than any other uninspired man ever did in the same length of time. 

The Mahoning association, at their meeting of that year, determined to em- 
ploy Brother Scott for the whole of his time the next twelve months, preaching 
and teaching in the bounds of the association. This appointment was highly 
commended by Bro. Campbell in the " Christian Baptist" for October following. 


The editor remarks, " Brother Walter Scott, who is now in the field, accepted 
of the appointment ; and few men on this continent understand the ancient order 
of things better than he. His whole soul is in the work." 

The results of this appointment, and the success of the pleadings for the ancient 
gospel were everywhere triumphant. Soon a host of able advocates in various 
parts embraced the same views, and began to propagate them with zeal and suc- 
cessespecially in Kentucky and Ohio. The clergy became alarmed. The 
work of proscription and anathema commenced ; arid, in a short time, the advo- 
cates of the same gospel that was preached by Peter on the day of Pentecost, 
and by all the apostles, were driven out of the Baptist communion, and reluc- 
tantly compelled to establish separate churches, that they might enjoy the lib- 
erty wherewith Christ had made them free. Sons, whilst they read the record, 
in a more enlightened and Christian age, will blush for the bigotry and intoler- 
ance of their sires. 

At the completion of the 7th volume of the Christian Baptist, in 1830, the Ed- 
itor thus writes " I had but very humble hopes, I can assure the public, the day 
I wrote the first essay, or the preface for this work, that I could at all succeed in 
gaining a patient hearing. But I have been entirely disappointed. The success 
attendant on this effort has produced a hope, which once I dared not entertain, 
that a blissful revolution can be effected. It has actually begun, and such a one 
as cannot fail to produce a state of society, far surpassing, in the fruits of right- 
eousness, and peace, and joy, any result of any religious revolution, since the 
great apostacy from Christian institutions." 

In 1830, the Millennial Harbinger was begun, and has continued to be issued 
monthly down to the present time. These periodicals, aided by several others, 
and by a numerous host of zealous and indefatigable advocates, have spread the 
principles of this reformation with a rapidity that has perhaps no parallel in the 
history of the world, except the progress of primitive Christianity in the times 
of the apostles. Already do the " Christian Churches" in these United States 
number, as it is confidently believed, more than 200,000 members ; and the 
cause is successfully pleaded, not merely in the Canadas, in England, Scotland, 
and Wales, but also in almost every part of the civilized world. 

While A. Campbell was thus laboring in the western part of Virginia, and 
even before he made his appearance on the public stage, another distinguished 
actor, impelled by a kindred spirit, was shaking time-honored religious systems 
to their very center in the heart of Kentucky. I mean that much calumniated, 
but great and good man 


The subject of this sketch was born in Maryland on the 24th day of Decem- 
ber, 1772. His father dying while he was very young, his mother in 1779, with 
a large family of children and servants, moved into what was then called the 
backwoods of Virginia Pittsylvania county, near Dan river. Here he went to 
school for four or five years to an Englishman, named Sommerhays, and was by 
him pronounced a finished scholar. In February, 1790, he entered a noted acad- 
emy in Guilford, North Carolina, under the care of Dr. David Caldwell, deter- 
mined, as he himself says, to " acquire an education, or die in the attempt." His 
design at that time was to qualify himself for a barrister. 

When he first entered the academy, about thirty or more of the students had 
embraced religion under the labors of James McGready, a Presbyterian preacher 
of great popularity and zeal. In about a year from this time, after a long and 
painful " experience" he became a member of the Presbyterian church, and turned 
his thoughts to the ministry. 

In 1793, at the close of his academic course, he commenced the study of di- 
vinity under the direction of Wm. Hodge, of Orange county, North Carolina. 
Here Witsius on the Trinity was put into his hands. The metaphysical reason- 
ings of this author perplexed his mind, and he laid the work aside as unprofitable 
and unintelligible. He heard of Dr, Watts* treatise on the Glory of Christ; 
sought after and obtained the work ; read it with pleasure, and embraced its 
views. The venerable Henry Patillo, on whom it devolved, at the next meeting 
of the Presbytery, to examine the candidates on the subject of theology, had 


himself embraced Watts' views of the Trinity. As might reasonably be expected 
under such circumstances, the examination on this topic was short, and embra- 
ced no peculiarities of the system. 

In April, 1796, he was licensed by the Orange Presbytery, North Carolina, 
and shortly afterwards directed his course westward (preaching at various points 
on the route), to Knoxville and Nashville, in Tennessee, and thence to Bourbon 
county, Kentucky, where about the close of the year 1796 he settled within the 
bounds of the congregations of Cane-ridge and Concord. Here he labored with 
great zeal, acceptance and success ; about eighty members having been added to 
his church in a few months ! ! 

In the fall of '98, he received a unanimous call from those congregations to 
become their settled pastor, which call he accepted. A day was set apart by the 
presbytery of Transylvania for his ordination. Having previously notified the 
leading members of the presbytery with respect to his difficulties on the subject 
of the Trinity, also on the doctrines of election, reprobation, and predestination, 
as taught in the Confession nf Faith, when he was asked, " Do you receive and 
adopt the Confession of Faith, as containing the system of doctrine taught in the 
Bible?" he answered aloud, so that the whole congregation might hear "I do, 
as far as I see it consistent with the word of God." No objection being made, 
he was ordained. 

Early in 1801, " the Great Revival" commenced in Tennessee, and in the 
southern part of Kentucky, under the labors of James McGready, and other Pres- 
byterian ministers. Determined to hear and judge for himself, Barton W. Stone 
hastened to a great Presbyterian camp-meeting in Logan county, Kentucky, where 
for the first time he witnessed those strange exercises of falling, jerking, dan- 
cing, &c. 

Filled with the spirit of the revival, he returned to his congregations related 
what he had seen and heard, and, with great earnestness and zeal, dwelt on the 
universality of the gospel, and urged the sinner to believe now, and be saved. 
The effects were immediate and powerful; the "exercises" made their appear- 
ance ; a series of meetings followed ; the work spread in all directions ; multi- 
tudes united with the different churches ; and, for a time, party creeds, names, 
and feelings, seemed to be buried in Christian love and union. 

The " Great Caneridge Meeting" commenced in August following, and con- 
tinued some six or seven days. From twenty to thirty thousand were supposed 
to be collected. Many had come from Ohio, and other remote parts, who, on 
their return, diffused the spirit in their respective neighborhoods. Methodist and 
Baptist Preachers united heartily in the work, and the salvation of sinners 
seemed to be the great object of all. 

About this time, Robert Marshall, John Dunlavy, Richard McNemar, B. W. 
Stone, and John Thompson, all members of the synod of Kentucky, renounced 
the dogmas of Calvinism, and taught wherever they went, that Christ died for 
all that the divine testimony was sufficient to produce faith and that the spirit 
Was received, not in order to faith, but through faith. The sticklers for orthodoxy, 
seeing the powerful effects of these doctrines, were for a time afraid to oppose. 
At length the friends of the Confession determined to arrest the progress of these 
anti-calvinistic doctrines, and put them down. The presbytery of Springfield, in 
Ohio, first took McNemar under dealings; and from that presbytery the case 
came before the synod of Lexington, Ky., in September, 1803. 

So soon as they discovered, from the tone of the synod, that its decision in 
McNemar's case would be adverse, the five drew up a protest against the pro- 
ceedings, and a declaration of their independence, and withdrawal from the juris- 
diction of that body. Immediately after their withdrawal from the synod, they 
constituted themselves into a presbytery, which they called the Springfield pres- 
bytery. They had not, however, worn this name more than one year, before they 
saw that it savored of a party spirit. With the man-made creeds they threw it 
overboard, and took the name Christian the name given to the disciples by di- 
vine appointment first at Antioch. " From this period " (says Stone), " I date 
the commencement of that reformation, which has progressed to this day." 
(1843). Soon after their withdrawal from the synod, they were joined by 
Matthew Houston and David Purviance. 

In 1805, Houston, McNemar, and Dunlavy joined the Shakers; and in 1807, 


Marshal] and Thompson, after vainly attempting to enslave their associates a 
second time to a creed, returned back into the bosom of the Presbyterian church. 
Meanwhile the subject of baptism had begun to arrest the attention of the 
churches. Many became dissatisfied with their infant sprinkling. The preachers 
baptized one another, and crowds of the private members came, and were also 
baptized. The congregations generally submitted to it, and yet the pulpit was 
silent on the subject. 

About the same time, Barton W. Stone and some others began to conclude that 
baptism was ordained for the remission of sins, and ought to be administered in 
the name of Jesus Christ to all believing penitents. At a great meeting at Con- 
cord, he addressed mourners in the words of Peter, (Acts ii, 38), and urged upon 
them an immediate compliance with the exhortation. He informed us, however, 
that " into the spirit of the doctrine he was never fully led, until it was revived 
by Bro. Alexander Campbell some years after." 

Although Elder Stone repudiated the orthodox views on the subject of the 
Trinity, Sonship, and Atonement, he never acknowledged the sentiments with 
which he was so frequently charged by his opponents. And in the latter part of 
his life, he often regretted that he had allowed himself to be driven in self-defence 
to speculate on these subjects as much as he had done. In the near prospect of 
death he averred, that he had never been a Unitarian, and had never regarded 
Christ as a created being. 

He died in the triumphs of faith, on the 9th day of November, 1844, univer- 
sally beloved and regretted by all who knew him. A worthy Methodist preacher 
in Jackson, Louisiana, once remarked to the writer of this article, in the presence 
of two old-school Presbyterian clergymen "I know Barton W. Stone well, 
having lived neighbor to him for a considerable time in Tennessee. A lovelier 
man, or a better Christian, in my judgment, never lived ; and he is no more a 
Unitarian, than those brethren there are" addressing himself at the same time to 
the two preachers. The person who, from a regard to truth and justice, bore this 
honorable testimony, was Mr. Finley, son of Dr. Finley, (a former president of 
the University of Georgia), and brother of the Secretary of the American Coloni- 
zation Society. 

Stone justly occupies a high rank as a scholar, a gentleman, and a Christian. 
In the department of poetry, his talents fitted him to shine, had they been culti- 
vated. There can hardly be found, in the English language, a lovelier, sweeter 
hymn, than one from his pen, written during the revivals about the beginning of 
the present century, and universally admired by the Christian world ever since. 
Be it known to the orthodox calumniators of Barton W. Stone, and to all men 
who have souls to feel the power either of religion or of poetry, that he is the 
author of that soul-inspiring hymn, in which the orthodox world has so greatly 
delighted for nearly half a century, viz., 

"The Lord is the fountain of goodness and love." 

A short account of the union between Stone's friends and those of Alexander 
Campbell, in 1832, shall close this hasty and imperfect sketch. In 1843, B.W. 
Stone writes thus : " I saw no distinctive feature between the doctrine he (A. 
Campbell) preached, and that which we had preached for many years, except on 
baptism for the remission of sins. Even this I had once received and taught, as 
before stated, but had strangely let it go from my rnind, till Brother Campbell 
revived it afresh. * * * " He boldly determined to take the Bible alone 
for his standard of faith and practice, to the exclusion of all other books as au- 
thoritative. He argued that the Bible presented sufficient evidence of its truth to 
sinners, to enable them to believe it, and sufficient motives to induce them to obey 
it that until they believed and obeyed the gospel, in vain they expected salva- 
tion, pardon, and the Holy Spirit that now is the accepted time, and now is the 
day of salvation." 

"These truths we had proclaimed and reiterated through the length and breadth 
of the land, from the press and from the pulpit, many years before A. Campbell 
and his associates came upon the stage, as aids of the good cause. Their aid 
gave a new impetus to the reformation which was in progress, especially among 
the Baptists in Kentucky; and the doctrines spread and greatly increased in the 
west. The only distinguishing doctrine between us and them was, that they 


preached baptism for remission of sins to believing penitents. This doctrine had 
not generally obtained amongst us, though some few had received it, and prac- 
tised accordingly. They insisted also on weekly communion, which we had 

* * * 

Among others of the Baptists who received, and zealously advocated the 
teaching of A. Campbell, was John T. Johnson, than whom there is not a better 
man. We lived together in Georgetown, had labored and worshipped together. 
We plainly saw, that we were on the same foundation, in the same spirit, and 
preached the same gospel. We agreed to unite our energies to effect a union be- 
tween our different societies. This was easily effected in Kentucky ; and in order 
to confirm this union, we became co-editors of the Christian Messenger. This 
union, I have no doubt, would have been as easily effected in other states as in 
Kentucky, had not there been a few ignorant, headstrong bigots on both sides, 
who were more influenced to retain and augment their party, than to save the 
world by uniting according to the prayer of Jesus." 

The biographer of Elder Stone informs us, that the union was consummated in 
the following manner: 

"A meeting of four days was held at Georgetown, embracing the Christmas 
of 1831, and another at Lexington of the same length, embracing the New Year's 
day of 1832. The writer had the happiness to be in attendance at both these 

"At these meetings the principles of our union were fully canvassed, which 
were such as we have stated. We solemnly pledged ourselves to one another 
before God, to abandon all speculations, especially on the Trinity, and kindred 
subjects, and to be content with the plain declarations of scripture on those top- 
ics, on which there had been so much worse than useless controversy. Elder 
John Smith and the writer were appointed by the churches, as evangelists to ride 
in this section of Kentucky, to promote this good work. In that capacity we 
served the churches three years. Thousands of converts to the good cause was 
the result of the union and co-operation of the churches, and their many evangel- 
ists during that period ; and I look back to those years as among the happiest of 
my life." 

As the short space allowed to this article precludes the possibility of doing it 
justice, the reader who desires further information, is referred to the Christian 
Baptist, and to the " Biography of Barton W. Stone," by Elder John Rogers, of 
Carlisle, Kentucky an excellent work just out of press. 




THE Cumberland Presbyterian church was organized in Tennessee in 1810, by 
the constitution of the Cumberland Presbytery. One of the leading ministers, 
however, resided in Kentucky at the time of the organization. In 1813 the 
original presbytery was divided into three presbyteries, one of which included 
those ministers and congregations that adhered to the Cumberland presbytery in 
its difficulties with the Presbyterian church. There are now two synods in the 
state, the Green river and the Kentucky synods. The number of ordained min- 
isters in the two synods is sixty-five ; of licentiates, thirty ; of candidates for the 
ministry, twenty-five. The whole number of communicants is estimated at 7000. 


The operations of the church have been mainly confined to the south-western 
portion of the state. Many of its ministers and members were pioneers in that 
section of country. They found much of the country physically and morally in 
a state of nature. Their labors, sacrifices, and self-denial were necessarily very 
great ; but it will be seen from the preceding statistics that they did not labor in 
vain. The early ministers of the Cumberland Presbyterian church were remark- 
able for a bold, manly, and impressive eloquence. They were western men in 
the full sense of the expression. Without the training of the schools, they were 
nevertheless reared up and brought into the ministry under circumstances well 
calculated to develop all their energies. With indomitable perseverance, and 
without worldly compensation, they performed an important part in converting a 
44 wilderness," a moral desolation, into a " fruitful field." They were men for 
the country and the times. Long will they live in the memory of that generation 
in which they labored, and long in south-western Kentucky will their influence 
be felt after a short-lived generation shall have passed away. 



THE convention of the diocese of Kentucky was organized in 1830. Its first 
bishop was consecrated Oct. 31st, 1832. 

There are about 20 clergymen in the diocese, 13 of whom are officiating in as 
many organized parishes. There are six missionary stations, and sixteen church 
edifices. The whole number of families is about 600, and of communicants 650. 

Shelby college was organized in 1836, and transferred to the Episcopal church 
in 1841. It has graduated two very small classes. Its presidency is now tempo- 
rarily vacant. 

The Theological Seminary was chartered in 1834. It has an excellent library 
of above three thousand volumes, and funds to the amount of $12,000. Its library 
is now deposited in the library room of Shelby college. 

The Rev. JOHN LYTHE, of the Episcopal church, or church of England, came 
early to Kentucky. When Col. Henderson established his proprietary govern- 
ment in 1775, Mr. Lythe was a delegate from the Harrodsburgh station or settle- 
ment to the legislative assembly. The delegates met on the 23d of May, 1775, 
and the assembly being organized, " divine service was performed by the Rev. 
Mr. Lythe, one of the delegates from Harrodsburg." In the records of this legis- 
lative assembly, we note the following proceedings : 

"The Rev. Mr. Lythe obtained leave to bring in a bill to prevent prof ane swear- 
ing and Sabbath breakng. After it was read the first time, it was ordered, says 
the journal, ' to be re-committed; and that Mr. Lythe, Mr. Todd, and Mr. Har- 
rod be a committee to make amendments.' 

" Mr. Todd, Mr. Lythe, Mr. Douglas, and Mr. Hite were appointed a commit- 
tee to draw up a contract between trie proprietors and the people of the colony." 

On the day succeeding the adjournment of the legislature of Transylvania, (for 
so this legislative council was termed,) " divine service," the same journal re- 
cords, " was performed by the Rev. Mr. Lythe, of the church of England." And 
it was under the shade of the same magnificent elm, that the voices of these rude 
hunters rose in accents of prayer and thanksgiving to the God of their fathers 


that the verdant groves of the land of the savage and the buffalo, first rang with 
the anthems of the Christian's worship, and echoed back the message of the Re- 
deemer of the world. It was fit it should be so, for 

" The groves were God's first temples."* 

We know nothing further of the Rev. John Ly the, except what is contained in 
these extracts of the proceedings of the " Legislature of Transylvania." He was 
doubtless the first minister of the gospel who penetrated the wilds of Kentucky ; 
and, from the fact that he was elected to the legislative assembly that he offici- 
ated as chaplain and that his name appears on some important' committees, he 
must have been a man of some note. 

The Rev. JAMES MOORE was the first minister of the Episcopal church of the 
United States, who permanently located in Kentucky. He emigrated to the 
State in 1792, from Virginia, and was at that time a candidate for the ministry in 
the Presbyterian church. His trial sermons not being sustained by the Transyl- 
vania presbytery, Mr. Moore became displeased with what he considered rigor- 
ous treatment, and in 1794 sought refuge in the bosom of the Episcopal church. 
Soon afterwards he became the first rector of Christ's church in Lexington. In 
1798, he was appointed acting president of Transylvania university, and pro- 
fessor of Logic, Metaphysics, Moral Philosophy, and Belles-Lettres. This situ- 
ation he held for several years, during which Transylvania enjoyed a good degree 
of prosperity. Mr. Moore was distinguished for sound learning, devoted piety, 
courteous manners, and liberal hospitality. 

The Rev. BENJAMIN ORR PEERS was born in Loudon county, Virginia, in the 
year 1800. His father, the late Major Valentine Peers, of Maysville, (a soldier 
of the revolutionary army) emigrated to Kentucky in 1803, when the subject of 
this brief notice was only three years old. Mr. Peers received the first rudiments 
of an academical education in the Bourbon academy, and completed his scholastic 
course at Transylvania university, while under the administration of Dr. Holley. 
He studied theology at Princeton. After completing his course in that institution, 
he connected himself with the Episcopal church, having previously belonged to 
the Presbyterian. He located in Lexington, where he established the Eclectic 
Institute, which became, under his supervision, one of the most valuable insti- 
tutions of learning in the west. During the time he was at the head of the Ec- 
lectic Institute, and subsequently, he spent much time, labor, and money in the 
cause of common school education, and was instrumental in arousing the public 
attention to the importance of the subject the present common school system of 
Kentucky being the result of the popular will thus brought to bear upon the 

Mr. Peers, while at the head of the Eclectic Institute, was chosen president of 
Transylvania university, which position he accepted, in opposition to the advice 
of many warm friends, and which he held but a very brief period. At the time 
of his decease, in the year 1842, at Louisville, he was editor of the Episcopal 
Sunday School Magazine at New York, and, also, editor of the Sunday School 
publications of the church. He was distinguished not only for his zealous devo- 
tion to the cause of general education, but for his sound learning and ardent 
piety. His published writings were not extensive the work on Christian Educa- 
tion appears to have been his favorite. He fell early, but fell at the post of 

*Gov. Morehead's Boonesborough Address. 




THE early history* of Methodism in Kentucky, is, to a certain extent, obscure 
and indefinite, arising partly from the want of proper documents, and partly from 
the difficulty of collecting those that are in existence. 

The most authentic and reliable information in regard to the origin and progress 
of Methodism in the United States, is to be gathered from the minutes of the 
several annual conferences ; but these, consisting mainly of statistical accounts, 
are rather meager and unsatisfactory. Yet brief as these records are, they throw 
a steady and continuous light upon the rise and progress of Methodism in Ken- 
tucky, down to the present time. From these conference documents we gather the 
fact, that the first traveling preachers appointed to labor in the State of Kentucky, 


These two men were appointed to travel the entire State in the year 1786, and 
were the first regular itinerant ministers, who, under the control of the Methodist 
Episcopal church, commenced the work of spreading " Scriptural holiness over 
these lands." 

At the time of their appointment, it appears that there were no regular societies 
in existence in Kentucky, as is evidenced by the entire absence of statistical 
information in the minutes. James Haw and Benjamin Ogden were, therefore, 
the first to collect the scattered Methodist emigrants of the " Dark and Bloody 
Ground" into classes, and organize them into societies. The first Methodist 
Episcopal church organized in Kentucky, was in the cabin of Thomas Stevenson, 
about two and a half miles south-west of Washington, Mason county, by Ben- 
jamin Ogden, some time during the year 1786. 

1787. The appointments for this year were 

Kentucky James Haw, Elder, Thomas Williamson, Wilson Lee. 
Cumberland Benjamin Ogden. 

The numbers in society, reported at the close of this year were, whites, 90, col- 
ored, none. 

1788. Kentucky Francis Poythress, James Haw, Elders. 
Lexington ct. Thomas Williamson, Peter Massie, Benjamin Snelling. 
Cumberland D. Combs, B. McHenry. 

Danville Wilson Lee. 

Numbers at the close of this year, whites, 479, colored, 64. 

Lexington circuit embraced the northern part of the State ; Cumberland cir- 
cuit, the few societies which were in the lower end of the State and middle 
Tennessee : Danville circuit the center of Kentucky south of the Kentucky river. 

1789. The same number of ministers were sent this year to the Kentucky 
work as on the previous year, and the arrangement of the circuits remained the 

The summer and fall of '89 and spring of '90, was a season of gracious revi- 
val; the "desert was made to rejoice, and the wilderness and the solitary place 
to blossom as the rose." The word of God, among the early settlers, was ac- 
companied " with the demonstration of the Spirit and power," and the numerical 
strength of the church was more than doubled. 

The numbers in society at the close of this year were, whites, 1037, colored, 51. 

1790. Conference was held this year for the first time in Kentucky, on the 26th 
of April, at Masterson's station, about five miles west of Lexington. 

This conference was the first attended in the west by Bishop Asbury. The 

*For the facts in these sketches, we are indebted mainly to the Rev. William Burke, of Cincin- 
nati, and to the published minutes of conference ; many of the sketches of pioneer ministers are in 
the language of the minutes. 


conference was composed of twelve preachers, the bishop, and Hope Hull, the 
traveling companion of the bishop. At the close of the conference, which was held 
this year in Charleston, South Carolina, Bishop Asbury, attended by Hope Hull, 
started on his journey to Kentucky, to meet the western preachers in conference. 
In his journal, the bishop speaks of his trip in the following language. "After 
crossing the Kentucky river," he says, " I was strangely outdone for want of 
sleep, having been greatly deprived of it during my journey through the wilder- 
ness, which is like being at sea in some respects, and in others worse. Our way 
is over mountains, steep hills, deep rivers, and muddy creeks, a thick growth of 
reeds for miles together, and no inhabitants but wild beasts and savage men. 
Sometimes, before I was aware, my ideas would be leading me to be looking out 
ahead for a fence, and I would, without reflection, try to recollect the houses we 
should have stopped at in the wilderness. I slept about an hour the first night, 
and about two the last. We ate no regular meal our bread grew short, and I 
was very much spent." 

Speaking of the preachers who were then traveling in the wilds of Kentucky, 
the bishop says : " I found the poor preachers indifferently clad, with emaciated 
bodies, and subject to hard fare, but I hope rich in faith." At the winding up of 
the first visit, he says : " My soul has been blessed among these people, and I 
am exceedingly pleased with them. I would not for the worth of all the place, 
have been prevented in this visit." The following appointments were made at 
this conference : 

1790. F. Poythress, presiding elder. 

Lexington circuit Henry Birchett, David Haggard. 

Limestone S. Tucker, J. Lillard. 

Danville " Thomas Williamson, Stephen Brooks. 

Madison " B. McHenry, Benjamin Snelling. 

Cumberland " Wilson Lee, James Haw, Peter Massie. 

A brief sketch of the life and labors of the men who composed this first con- 
ference, and who are emphatically the pioneer ministers of the Methodist Episco- 
pal church, may not be out of place. 

FRANCIS ASBURY, the presiding bishop, stands among that hardy and laborious 
band supremely pre-eminent, " In labors more abundant than they all." Land- 
ing from England, on the shores of our country, on the 27th of October, 1771, 
from that hour until the termination of his pilgrimage, his clear and manly voice 
was heard upon all occasions, lifting itself up against sin, and in favor of the 
gospel of Christ. The trump of the gospel, when applied to his lips, gave no 
uncertain sound ; his mind was clear, discriminating, and logical ; he was rich 
by the "word of God dwelling in him richly in all wisdom;" he was great by 
the spirit of glory and of God which rested upon him ; and for the space of forty- 
five years, he moved as an "angel" among the churches, "feeding the flock of 
Christ," and building the believer up in his most holy faith. Perhaps no man, 
since the settlement of America, has traveled as extensively, and labored as un- 
tiringly, overcoming so many serious obstacles, as the apostolic Asbury. His 
foot-prints have been left wide and deep upon " the sands of time." He preached 
" Jesus and the resurrection" along the sea-board, from Maine to Georgia from 
the Atlantic out west, until, from the rude cabin of the frontier squatter, the un- 
broken forest re-echoed back the burden of his embassy. Of this first visit to 
Kentucky, in his journal he says : " I rode about three hundred miles to Ken- 
tucky in six days, and back by way of Tennessee, about five hundred miles, in 
nine days. ! what exertions for man and beast." While performing these 
journies, too, the bare earth for days was his bed, and his only covering the pro- 
tecting wing of his "ministering angel." After spending fifty-five years in the 
ministry, forty-five of which were spent in America, he was transferred by the 
Great Superintendent to the church above, on the 21st of March, 1816. His 
name unstained his labors and hardships unsurpassed the name of Francis 
Asbury will be remembered in all the greenness of affection, while the pure doc- 
trines of Methodism have a votary. 

FRANCIS POYTHRESS was admitted into the traveling connection at a conference 
held in Baltimore, on the 21st of May, 1776. In 1778, he was sent out to Ken- 
tucky in the capacity of elder. As a preacher, few in those days excelled him. 


His voice clear and musical ; his knowledge of the scriptures vast and accurate ; 
his sermons bedewed with his tears in his closet, fell as the dews of life upon 
the hearts of his congregation ; sinners trembled before the Lord, and the keen 
flash of the Spirit's sword was felt passing all through the soul, discerning by its 
"brightness, " the thoughts and intents of the heart." In the visit Bishop Asbury 
made to Kentucky in 1790, a single note made in his journal pours a flood of 
light upon the secret of his success. He says : " I met the preachers in con- 
ference," and adds: "Brother Poythress is much alive to God." Sermons 
anointed with the spirit of God, and baptized in the blood of the Lamb, will 
always " burn as fire in dry stubble." Brother Poythress continued to travel in 
the west, mainly in Kentucky, until the spring of 1800, when he attended the 
general conference held in Baltimore, at which conference he was appointed to 
a district in North Carolina, including circuits from the sea shore to the summit 
of the Blue Ridge. The excessive draughts made upon his mind and body, by 
the labor of this district, unsettled his mental balance, so that during the summer 
he became partially deranged. 

In the fall of 1800, he returned to Kentucky to his sister's, the widow Prior, who 
then resided in Jessamine county, about three miles from Nicholasville, where 
he remained a confirmed lunatic until his death. 

HENRY BIRCHETT was born in Brunswick county, State of Virginia. He con- 
tinued between five and six years in the ministry, a gracious, happy, useful man, 
who freely offered himself for four years' service in the dangerous stations of 
Kentucky and Cumberland. Birchett was one among the worthies who cheer- 
fully left safety, ease, and prosperity, to seek after and suffer faithfully for souls. 
His meekness, love, labors, prayers, tears, sermons, and exhortations, were not 
soon forgotten. He died in peace, in Cumberland circuit, on the western waters, 
in February, 1794. 

DAVID HAGGARD came out with Birchett, as a volunteer from the Virginia con- 
ference, to do battle in the hard service of Kentucky. He was appointed as 
colleague with Birchett on the Lexington circuit in 1790, and traveled a few 
years in Kentucky with considerable acceptability, when he joined O'Kelley's* 
party, returned to the east, and died in connection with the New Lights. 

JAMES HAW was admitted into the traveling connection at a conference held 
on the 17th of April, 1782, at " Ellis's preaching house," in Sussex county, Vir- 
ginia, and appointed to labor as one of the first two ministers in Kentucky, in 
1786, where he continued to travel until 1791, when he located and settled in 
Sumner county, Tennessee. In 1795, he joined O'Kelly's party. In 1800, he 
attached himself to the Presbyterian church, joined in with the Cumberland Pres- 
byterians when they separated from the mother church, and finally died in their 
communion, a few years after, on his farm in Sumner county. 

PETER MASSIE entered the connection in 1789, and traveled successively the 
Danville, Cumberland, and Limestone circuits. At the close of '91, he departed 
for a purer clime. The published account briefly states that, "He labored faith- 
fully in the ministry for upwards of three years, confirmed and established in the 
grace of God, and useful. An afflicted man, who desired and obtained a sudden 
death, by falling from his seat and expiring December 19th, 1791, at Hodge's 
station, five miles south of Nashville." He was the first who fell in the harness 
on the western waters. 

SAMUEL TUCKER was appointed from the Baltimore conference of 1790, to 
Limestone circuit (now Maysville). Leaving his friends and all behind, he started 
to preach Jesus on the work assigned him, but in descending the Ohio river, at or 
near the mouth of Brush creek, about thirty miles below Portsmouth, the boat in 
which he was descending was attacked by Indians, and the most of the crew 
were killed ; but he continued to defend the boat with his rifle, until it floated out 
into the stream, beyond the reach of the Indians pursuing. He arrived at Lime- 
stone, and there died of his wounds. His remains now lie in the cemetery in 
Maysville, unhonored the spot unknown. 

nNo m ^ M ~ et . hodisl E P is copal church on the subject of episcopacy and Ore 


BENJAMIN SNELLINO was admitted into connection in 1788, and sent to travel 
the Lexington circuit that year. He continued in Kentucky but a short time, 
and then returned to the east, and after remaining some time, he returned to 
Kentucky, settled in Bath county, where he finally died. 

JOSEPH LILLARD was born in Kentucky, not far from Harrodsburg, and admit- 
ted into the traveling connection at the first conference held in Kentucky, at 
Masterson's station, April 26th, 1790. He was appointed that year to Limestone 
circuit. He traveled but a few years, and died near Harrodsburgh, in a located 

BARNABAS McHENRY embraced religion and attached himself to the Methodist 
Episcopal church in the infancy of Methodism in the United States. Believing 
it to be his duty to preach the gospel, he joined the traveling connection in 1787. 
In 1788, he was sent to Cumberland circuit, and continued to labor in the various 
circuits of Kentucky, faithfully and successfully, until 1796, when, in conse- 
quence of the loss of health, he located. In 1819, he was re-admitted into the 
traveling connection ; but his strength not being sufficient for the labors of an 
effective man, he was, in 1821, returned superannuated. This relation he sus- 
tained until death by cholera, June 16th, 1833, relieved him of all his infirmities. 
As an old apostle of Methodism, he was fond of the doctrines of the church, and 
took delight in teaching them to others. He lived in the enjoyment of the bless- 
ing of sanctification, and died in peace, going up from earth to take a position of 
nearer concernment in the lofty worship of heaven. 

WILSON LEE was born in Sussex county, Delaware, November, 1761, and 
admitted into the traveling connection in 1784. He was sent out to labor in Ken- 
tucky in 1787, and continued to labor in the different appointments assigned him, 
as a man of God esteemed very highly, for his work's sake, until 1792. From 
that conference he was transferred to the east, where he continued to labor until 
he finished his course, by the rupture of a blood vessel, in Anne Arundel county, 
Maryland, October llth, 1804. Wilson Lee was a preacher of no ordinary 
acceptability, correct in the economy of himself and others. As an elder and 
presiding elder he showed himself a workman that needed not to be ashamed. 
Professing the sanctifying grace of God, he carried about him the air and port 
of one who had communion with heaven ; his life and conversation illustrated 
the religion he professed. He was neat in his dress, affable in his manners, 
fervent in his spirit, energetic in his ministry, and his discourses were fitted to 
the characters and cases of his hearers. His labors and his life were laid down 
together. It may be truly said, that he hazarded his life upon all the frontier 
stations he filled, from the Monongahela to the Cumberland river, all through 
Kentucky, in many of which stations there were savage cruelty and frequent 
deaths. He had to ride from station to station, and from fort to fort, sometimes 
with, and sometimes without a guide. 

BENJAMIN OGDEN was born in New Jersey in 1764. In early life he was a 
soldier of the revolution, which gave distinction and independence to his coun- 
try. He embraced religion in 1784, at the age of 20. Progressing like Timothy 
in the knowledge of religion, he united himself with the traveling connection in 
1786, and received his first appointment to the then wilderness of Kentucky, in 
connection with James Haw, as a missionary : and to him belongs the honor of 
organizing the first Methodist Episcopal church in Kentucky, in the house of 
Thomas Stevenson, of Mason county. Ill health compelled him to desist from 
traveling in 1788, remaining in a located relationship for nearly thirty years. In 
1817, he re-entered the traveling connection, but soon sunk again under the press- 
ure of ill health but earnestly desirous to be more extensively useful than he 
could be in that relation, he attempted the work of an itinerant again in 1824, 
and continued an effective man until 1827, when he was placed upon the superan- 
nuated list, and remained so until his death in 1834. Benjamin Ogden was a man 
of good natural intellect, and various attainments as a Christian minister. He 
was especially well instructed in the principles, and deeply imbued with the 
spirit of his vocation, as a primitive Methodist preacher. After a long life of 
laborious toils and effective service in the furtherance of the gospel, this venerable 
servant of God and his church one of the first two missionaries who penetrated 


the vast valleys of the Mississippi was released by death from his militant 
charge expiring in all the calmness and confidence of faith and hope, went to 
his reward. 

JOHN PAGE was admitted into the traveling connection at Holstein on the 15th 
of May, 1791. He came over with Bishop Asbury to Kentucky, and was sta- 
tioned on the Lexington circuit. Traveled Danville circuit in '93 Salt river in 
'94 Limestone in '95 Green circuit, Holstein conference in '96 Hinkston in 
'97 Salt river and Shelby in '98 Cumberland in '99 Holstein, Russell, and 
New river in 1800 Cumberland in 1801 ditto in 1802. In 1803, he was 
appointed as presiding elder on the Cumberland district. In 1804 he located. 
Sometime afterwards he joined in a superannuated relation, and now lives on the 
Cumberland river, in Tennessee, near the mouth of Caney fork. 

BENJAMIN NORTHCOTT was admitted on trial at the second conference that was 
held in Kentucky, at Masterson's station, May 1st, 1792, and appointed that year 
to Lexington circuit. In 1793 he was sent to Limestone circuit. This year he 
married and settled in the neighborhood of Flemingsburg, where he now lives 
a preacher of holiness illustrating the same in life. 

JAMES O'CuLL was admitted on trial at Uniontown, Pennsylvania, July 28th, 
1791, and appointed with Barnabas McHenry to Cumberland circuit, (compre- 
hending middle Tennessee). From Cumberland he returned back to Kentucky, 
married near Lexington, and afterwards settled on the North fork of Licking 
river, in Mason county, Kentucky, where a few years past he left for the " land 
that is afar off, where the King is seen in his beauty." 

JOHN RAY was admitted on trial in 1791, and appointed to Limestone circuit. 
Traveled Green circuit in '93 New river circuit, Virginia, in '94 Bedford, Vir- 
ginia, in '95 Amherst, Virginia, in '96 Tar river circuit, North Carolina, in 
'97 Roanoke, North Carolina, in '98 Tar river circuit in '99 Caswell circuit, 
North Carolina, in 1800. Located in 1801, and returning to Kentucky, settled 
near Mount Sterling, where he lived a number of years, after which he was re- 
admitted into the Kentucky conference, and a few years past moved to Indiana, 
and there passed from earth to the spirit land. 

WILLIAM BURKE was born in Loudon county, Va., on the 13th of January, 1770, 
and was received into the traveling connection in 1791, at McKnight's, on Tar 
river, North Carolina, and appointed to West New river, in Virginia. Met again in 
conference in the next year in the rich valley of Holstein, near the salt works, on 
the 15th May, and appointed to Green circuit, in the Western Territory (now East 
Tenn.). Met again in conference at Nelson's on the 13th of April, 1793, at which 
conference he volunteered for Kentucky, came out and attended the conference held 
at Masterson's station on the 6th of May, 1793, and was appointed that year to 
Danville circuit. Met again in conference at Bethel Academy, in Jessamine county, 
on the 15th of April, 1794, and appointed to Hinkston circuit. During the year 
traveled Hinkston, Salt river, and Lexington. As a faithful, effective, and labo- 
rious itinerant, William Burke continued to travel various circuits and districts 
in Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, and Ohio, until 1808, when he was 
changed from effective to a supernumerary relation, and appointed to Lexington 
circuit. In 1809 he was appointed to the Green river district, and continued in 
that extensive and laborious work, until conference met in Cincinnati, October 
1st, 1811, when he was appointed to the Miami circuit, including Cincinnati. In 
1812, from the conference which met that year in Chillicothe, he was appointed 
to Cincinnati station, theirs/ station west of the mountains. In the fulfilling of 
that work, he lost his voice entirely, and was placed in a supernumerary relation 
for several years. He then superannuated, which relation he now sustains to the 
Kentucky conference. As a preacher, William Burke stood among the first in 
his day. Possessing a cultivated and accurate memory, he stored it richly with 
Bible truths, and joining with his biblical knowledge a deep acquaintance with 
human nature, he was enabled to adapt his sermons to the varied characters of his 
hearers ; nor did he fail, whenever a fit occasion offered, to rebuke sin boldly in 
high places. Possessing a large, muscular frame, he had a great deal of native 
physical courage, and this, added to high moral purpose, made him one of the 


most fearless and at the same time most effective men in planting the gospel of 
Jesus Christ in a new country. There are thousands in Kentucky, who yet 
remember the voice of William Burke pealing the thunders of Sinai around 
them, and then softly wooing the melted heart to the foot of the cross. He is 
still living in Cincinnati, his faculties unimpaired, and his attachment to the 
cause of Christ undiminished. Long may he be spared to guide by his discrim- 
inating counsel the ark of Methodism. 

Methodism, planted as we have seen in Kentucky, as late as 1786, grew 
rapidly up to 1790 in numbers. In that year, at the conference held at Masterson's 
station, the numbers reported were 

Whites. Colored. 

Lexington 424 32 

Limestone 66 

Danville 322 26 

Madison 212 8 

Cumberland 241 41 

1265 107 

Limestone circuit was taken from Lexington, and Madison from Danville cir- 
cuit, this year. When we take into consideration the fact that the country was 
at that time sparsely populated, the increase of numbers is somewhat surprising. 
In a little more than three years front the hour that the first missionary of the 
Methodist Episcopal church began to preach among them a free, present, and full 
salvation, we find that a church has sprung up, embracing within its pale a mem- 
pership of nearly 1400. Well might the hardy pioneers of that day say " behold 
what God has wrought." The increase of membership in Kentucky appears to 
have been steady and uniform in its growth. 

In 1791 there were Whites 1459 Colored 94 

In 1792 " " 2059 " 176 

Bishop Asbury, in his journal, speaks of attending the Kentucky conference 
this year, which was held on the 26th of April, at Masterson's station, and says, 
" Vast crowds of people attended public worship, the spirit of matrimony is 
prevalent here ; in one circuit both preachers are settled the land is good the 
country new and indeed all possible facilities to the comfortable maintainance 
of a family are afforded to an industrious, prudent pair." 
In 1795 there were whites 2262, colored 99. 

This year FRANCIS ACUFF, for three years a traveling preacher, was called 
home to his reward. He was a young man of genius and improvable talents : he 
was brought up in Sullivan county, Tennessee, and died in August, 1795, near 
Danville in Kentucky, in the twenty-fifth year of his age. Bishop Asbury, speak- 
ing of his death says, "Francis Acuff from a fiddler, became a Christian from 
a Christian a preacher from a preacher I trust a glorified saint." 

In 1800, the ordained preachers who had been traveling in the west, were re- 
quested by Bishop Asbury, to attend the general conference held that year in 
Baltimore, in order that their fields of labor might be changed, and new preachers 
sent out to the western work. Consequently the majority of the old traveling 
preachers were recalled from the west, and an almost entirely new supply sent out. 
The minutes for 1800 stand thus NO'S. IN CONNECTION. 

Whites. Colored. 

Scioto and Miami Henry Smith 467 1 

Limestone William Algood 417 20 

Hinkstone William Burke 283 4 

Lexington Thomas Allen 273 15 

Danville Hezekiah Harriman 339 67 

Salt river and Shelby John Sale 167 7 

Cumberland William Lambeth 247 40 

. Green James Hunter 434 22 

| ^n Watson, John Page !....._ 

3248 240 


No presiding elder being appointed that year, the first five circuits named 
above, were taken oversight of by William Burke. Harriman and Sale, being 
the only other elders in the entire western country, took charge of the remainder. 
The time of the meeting of the conference was changed this year from spring to 
the fall, and met in October at Bethel academy. Bishops Asbury and Whatcoat 
attended at this conference. William McKendree was appointed presiding elder 
for Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee and part of Western Virginia. 

WILLIAM MCKENDREE, whose name is in all the churches, and who was like 
an illuminated torch sent down for awhile from the upper sanctuary, to burn in 
the golden candlesticks of God's house on earth, came out with Asbury and 
Whatcoat in the fall of 1800 from the Virginia conference, and at the conference 
held that year at Bethel in October, was appointed presiding elder for all the 
western country, comprehending in his district the whole of Kentucky and part 
of three other states, viz : Ohio, Virginia and Tennessee. He continued travel- 
ing as elder over that immense scope of country for two years, when the dis- 
trict was divided into three parts Holstein district, Cumberland district and 
Kentucky district. McKendree remained presiding elder of the Kentucky dis- 
trict for three years, when he was appointed to Cumberland district in the fall of 
1806, and continued traveling in that work, until the general conference of 1808, 
held that year in Baltimore, when he was elected bishop, and in that relation he 
continued for twenty-five years, visiting successively all the states in the Union, 
often made the instrument in the hands of the Holy Spirit of breathing fresh life 
into the churches, and then again like the youthful David, of smiting some 
proud defier of Israel low. As a Christian, William McKendree combined 
solemnity and cheerfulness together in such a manner as to command the rever- 
ence and esteem of all about him. As a preacher of the gospel, his sermons 
were replete with the sweet story of the cross mingling together the sublime 
discoveries of faith and the sweet anticipations of hope, in such a manner as to 
captivate and entrance the hearts of his hearers. He departed for a home in 
Heaven in 1833. He sleeps sweetly. 

From the conference of 1800, the church continued steadily to advance both in 
numbers and spirituality. The summer and fall of this year witnessed the com- 
mencement of those gracious outpourings of the Holy Spirit, which soon obtained 
the appellation of "THE GREAT REVIVAL." This work, commencing in Tennes- 
see and the lower parts of the state of Kentucky, gradually spread upwards into 
the interior of the State, leavening the country all around ; camp meetings at- 
tended by convening thousands, and continuing for days and nights and sometimes 
weeks together, tooK the place of the ordinary stated ministrations, and the water 
flowing from the smitten rock of Horeb, rolled its life-giving current to thou- 
sands of souls thirsting for salvation. In May 1801, the work broke out in 
Madison county, Kentucky, and at a meeting on Cabin creek, the scene was 
awful beyond description the novelty of the manner of worship " the ranges of 
tents the fires reflecting light amidst the branches of the towering trees the 
candles and lamps illuminating the encampment hundreds moving to and fro, 
with lights and torches like Gideon's army; the preaching, praying, singing and 
shouting, all heard at once rushing from different parts of the ground, like the 
sound of many waters, was enough to swallow up all the powers of contempla- 
tion." Meeting after meeting followed in quick succession until the 6th of 
August, 1801, when " the great general camp meeting'' 1 was held at Cane Ridge, 
about 7 miles from Paris (Bourbon county). This meeting was the climax of 
all the rest, rendered wonderful by the almost incredible numbers that attended, 
as well as by the extraordinary scenes and developments there witnessed. "The 
concourse in attendance was most prodigious, being computed by a revolutionary 
officer who was accustomed to estimate encampments, to amount to not less than 
20,000 souls." Although there were many extravagances and irregularities con- 
nected with and growing out of these protracted and highly excited meetings, 
yet ofood men of all denominations, now concur in the opinion " That the spirit 
of^God was really poured out, and that many sincere converts were made." The 
evidence of the genuine nature of the work being seen in the humble, loving and 
holy walk of those who were the subjects of this work. 


The first Methodist meeting-house erected in Kentucky, was a log one, put up 
at Masterson's station, in the Lexington circuit, in 1787 or '88. 

The next house of worship, was erected at Poplar Flats, in Salt river circuit, 
about 1790, called Ferguson's chapel. 

About the same time, a log meeting-house was erected in Jessamine county, 
near Bethel Academy, called Lewis' meeting house. 

In Danville circuit, a log meeting-house called Procter's chapel, was erected 
in Madison county, about the same time. In the fall of 1793, the second meeting- 
house in Danville circuit, was built in Garrard county, called Burke's chapel. 
The first in Limestone circuit was Bracken meeting-house. 
The first brick church built in Kentucky, was at Flemingsburg, and the second 
in Shelby county, called the brick chapel. 

The limits assigned to this sketch forbid a more extended history of the 
Methodist Episcopal church. From the statistical accounts of the church, how- 
ever, it will be seen that from that period up to the present time, her march has 
been steady and onward. 
There were within the limits of the Kentucky conference 

Whites. Colored. 

In 1800 1626.... 115 

" 1810 5513.... 243 

1820 11,887.... 1199 

" 1830 22,074.... 4682 

1840 30,939.... 6321 

" 1845 39,756.... 9362 

From the above statistics it will be seen that the Methodist Episcopal church, 
has a little more than doubled its numbers every ten years, until the year 1830. 
In the spring of 1846, the church in Kentucky was divided into two conferences, 
the upper called "THE KENTUCKY CONFERENCE," the lower called "THE 
LOUISVILLE CONFERENCE." The first session of the Kentucky conference was 
held in September, 1846, at Covington. 

The first session of the Louisville conference was held in October, at Hop- 

The numbers embraced in the bounds of the Kentucky conference were in the 
fall of 1846, White*. Colored. 

21,559.. ..5,151 

Traveling Preachers 90 

Local " 240 

Total 27,040 

In the Louisville conference there are about 25,000 


Add the ratio of increase up to this time from the conferences of 1846, 
and it will be about 2,371 


These statistical accounts will close this imperfect sketch of the rise and pro- 
gress of Methodism in Kentucky. Though later than some others in entering into 
this interesting field, yet with her characteristic energy, from the hour that she 
first planted her banner in "Kentucky's tangled wilderness," down to the present 
time, she has been first with the foremost, entering heartily into every benevo- 
lent plan having for its object the amelioration or evangelization of our race. 
Tens of thousands have already risen up and called her "blessed," and if she 
will continue to stand by the ancient land-marks, which have guided her thus 
far, generations yet unborn, feeling her influence and bowing before the force 
and purity of her doctrines, will say of her what has been said by an eloquent 
divine, "across the waters," that "Methodism is Christianity in earnest." 




IN the year 1783, the Rev. David Rice immigrated to Kentucky, and was the 
first Presbyterian minister who crossed the mountains. He gathered the scattered 
Presbyterians into regular congregations, at Danville, Cane run, and the forks 
of Dick's river. He was followed the next year by the Rev. Adam Rankin, who 
gathered the church at Lexington, and the Rev. James Crawford, who set- 
tled at Walnut Hill. In the year 1786, the Rev. Thomas Craighead, and the 
Rev. Andrew McClure were added to the number. These ministers were shortly 
after organized into a presbytery under the name of the presbytery of Transyl- 
vania ; a euphonious and classical epithet for the backwoods. All the above 
named persons were from Virginia, except Mr. Craighead, who was of North 

The presbytery of Transylvania met in the court house at Danville, on Tues- 
day, October 17, 1786. Mr. Rice presided as moderator, by appointment of the 
General Assembly of the Presbyterian church. Mr. McClure acted as clerk. 
The following ministers were present: Rev. David Rice, Adam Rankin, Andrew 
McClure, James Crawford, and Terah Templin, recently ordained by a commis- 
sion of Hanover presbytery. There were five ruling elders present, as repre- 
sentatives of as many churches, viz : Messrs. Richard Steele, David Gray, John 
Bovel, Joseph Reed, and Jeremiah Frame. 

There were at this time twelve congregations in a more or less perfect state of 
organization, viz.: Cane River, Concord (Danville), the forks of Dick's run, 
New Providence (McAfee's station), Mount Zion (Lexington), Mount Pisgah, 
Salem, Walnut Hill, Hopewell, Paint Lick, Jessamine creek, Whitley's station, 
and Crab Orchard. 

By the year 1802, the number of Presbyterians had so multiplied, as to call for 
the erection of a synod. Accordingly, on Tuesday, October 14, 1802, the synod 
of Kentucky held its first meeting, in the Presbyterian church in Lexington. Mr. 
Rice preached the opening sermon, and was elected moderator. Mr. Marshall 
was chosen clerk. The number of members present was thirty; of whom sev- 
enteen were ministers, and thirteen elders. The total number of ministers within 
the bounds was thirty-seven. The synod was composed of the three presbyte- 
ries of Transylvania, West Lexington, and Washington, in Ohio. During the 
sessions, Cumberland presbytery .was set off from Transylvania, embracing the 
south-western portion of the State, and part of Tennessee. Thus it will be seen, 
that the territorial jurisdiction of the synod was co-extensive with the settlement 
of the entire region west of the mountains. 

The members of the synod were as follows : 

Of the presbytery of Transylvania, Ministers present, David Rice, Samuel Fin- 
ley, Matthew Houston, Samuel Robertson, Archibald Cameron. Elders, Andrew 
Wallace, James Bigham, Court Voris, (Voorhees). Ministers absent, Thomas 
Craighead, Terah Templin, James Balch, James McGready, William Hodge, 
John Bowman, William McGee, John Rankin, Samuel Donald, William Mahon, 
Samuel McAdovv, John Howe, James Vance, Jeremiah Abel. 

Of the presbytery of West Lexington, Ministers present, James Crawford, 
Samuel Shannon, Isaac Tull, Robert Marshall, James Blythe, James Welch, Jo- 
seph P. How, Samuel Rannels, John Lyle, William Robinson. Elders, James 
Bell, Robert Maffet, Malcolm Worley, William Scott, Joseph Walker, William 
McConnel, Samuel Hayden, William Henry. Absent, Rev. Barton W. Stone. 

Of the presbytery of Washington, Ministers present, James Kemper, John P. 
Campbell, Richard McNemar, John Thompson, John Dunlavy. Elders, Robert 
Gill, John Campbell. Ministers absent, John E. Finley, Matthew G. Wallace. 
The limits of the synod were reduced, in 1814, by the erection of the synod 


of Ohio; and in 1817, by the erection of the synod of Tennessee; since which 
time its boundaries have corresponded with those of the State. It consists at 
present of six presbyteries : Transylvania, West Lexington, Louisville, Muhlen- 
burg, Ebenezer, and Bowling Green ; comprising seventy-nine ministers, one 
hundred and forty churches, and eight thousand and forty-eight communicants. 
This statement does not embrace the members of twenty-seven churches, which 
failed to report the number of their communicants to the General Assembly of 
1846, and which are supposed to contain about fifteen hundred communicants; 
making the whole number in the State about nine thousand and five hundred. In 
1838, there were several ministers and churches which separated from the synod, 
and formed a new synod, which is commonly designated the New School synod, 
and which embraces three presbyteries, fourteen ministers, twenty-one churches, 
and nine hundred and fifty-four members. 

The contributions, during the year 1845-6, to the General Assembly's Boards 
of Education and Missions, foreign and domestic, exceeded $13,000, indepen- 
dently of all that has been done for Center College, which is under its control, 
and has an endowment of over $70,000. 

The Rev. DAVID RICE (or " Father Rice," as that venerable man was familiarly 
known), was born in Hanover county, Va., December 20, 1733. He was con- 
verted under the preaching of President Edwards, and studied Theology under 
Rev. John Todd. In the struggle for national independence, he took a warm 
and zealous part, and did not esteem it unbecoming his clerical profession to 
harangue the people on their grievances at county meetings. 

In 1783, he removed to Kentucky, and identified his fortunes with the infant 
colony. Besides his active duties as a minister of the gospel, and the organiza- 
tion of many churches, he was zealously engaged in advancing the cause of edu- 
cation. He was the first teacher in the Transylvania seminary, and for several 
years the chairman of its board of trustees ; and when that seminary, after its 
removal to Lexington, fell under deistical influence, he took an active part in rais- 
ing up a rival in the Kentucky academy. The public estimation in which he was 
held, may be inferred from his election as a member of the convention which met 
in Danville in 1792, to frame a state constitution. He exerted his influence in 
that convention, but without success, for the insertion of an article providing for 
the gradual extinction of slavery in Kentucky. 

Previous to Mr. Rice's arrival in Kentucky, marriages had been solemnized by 
the magistrates ; but after that event, the people made it a point to procure the 
services of a clergyman. On the 3d of June, 1784, he married a couple at Mc- 
Afee's station, and on the 4th, preached the funeral sermon of Mr. James 
M'Cann, sen., the first sermon ever preached on the banks of Salt river. 

Father Rice's talents were of a plain, practical cast not of a commanding or- 
der. His judgment was sound, his disposition conservative, and his deportment 
exemplary. He spent much time in prayer. In the pulpit, his manner was sol- 
emn and impressive ; in his intercourse with society, dignified and grave. His 
person was slender, but tall and active, and even at the age of seventy, he exhib- 
ited an astonishing degree of alertness. He died in Green county, on the 18th 
of June, 1816, in the 83d year of his age. His last words were "Oh, when 
shall I be free from sin and sorrow ! "* 

Rev. JAMES CRAWFORD removed with his family to Kentucky in 1784. Like 
most of the pioneer Presbyterian ministers, he was from Virginia. He settled 
at Walnut Hill, where he gathered and organized a flourishing church. Although 
laboring under feeble health, he was zealous and active in the cause of his Mas- 
ter, and numerous converts were added to the church through his instrumentality. 
He was a plain looking man, of very grave demeanor ; not a popular preacher, 
but highly useful and instructive. He died in March, 1803. 

The Rev. TERAH TEMPLIN, having been licensed by the Hanover (Va.) pres- 

*This sketch, as well as most of these which follow, is abridged from " The History of the Presby- 
terian Church of Kentucky," by the Rev. Robert Davidson, D.D., a work eloquently and classically 
written, and displaying very extensive research published at New York early in the present year. 


bytery in 1780, soon after came to Kentucky, where he received ordination in 
1785. He located in Washington county, on the south side of the Kentucky 
river, where he organized several churches, and did the work of an evangelist 
faithfully. He also organized several churches, and supplied destitute congrega- 
tions in Livingston county. He died October 6, 1818, at the advanced age of 
seventy-six. Faithful to the attachment of his early years, which had been pre- 
maturely sundered, he never married. His talents were respectable, his manner 
solemn and impressive, and his deportment exemplary, guileless, and unassu- 

The Presbyterian ministry of Kentucky was reinforced, in 1786, by the acces- 
sion of the Rev. THOMAS B. CBAIGHEAD, and Rev. ANDREW McCj,URE. Mr. 
Craighead was a native of North Carolina. Shortly after his arrival in Kentucky, 
he was called to the pastoral charge of the Shiloh congregation in Sumner 
county, Tenn. Here, being opposed to the extravagancies of the times, and sus- 
pected of favoring Pelagianism, he became unpopular. In 1805, a commission 
was appointed by the synod of Kentucky, which was directed to investigate the 
correctness of the report of his unsoundness. The investigation which suc- 
ceeded, a long and protracted one, resulted in the suspension of Mr. Craighead 
from the gospel ministry. He made several ineffectual efforts to have the sus- 
pension removed, but did not succeed until the year 1824, when he was enabled 
to make so good a vindication of himself, and to explain his views so much to 
the satisfaction of the General Assembly, that they restored him to his ministe- 
rial standing. Not long after this event, he departed this life in Nashville, aged 
about seventy years. For some time before his death, he had suffered under the 
combined misfortunes of poverty and blindness. Mr. Craighead was of a tall 
but spare figure, not less than six feet in height. He excelled as an extempora- 
neous orator his eloquence being of that fervid kind which captivates and car- 
ries away the hearer in spite of himself. The Hon. John Breckinridge said of 
him, that his discourses made a more lasting impression upon his memory than 
those of any other man he had ever heard. 

The Rev. ANDREW McCujRE, who removed to Kentucky in company with Mr. 
Craighead, in 1787, organized the Salem and Paris churches ; and in 1789 took 
charge of the latter, where he remained till his decease in 1793, in the 39th year 
of his age. 

In 1784, the Rev. ADAM RANKIN, of Augusta county, Va. came to Kentucky, 
and settled in Lexington. He immediately became the pastor of Mount Zjon 
church, and subsequently, in conjunction, of that of Pisgah, about eight miles 
south-west of Lexington. In 1792, he separated from the Presbyterian church, 
on account of psalmody, carrying with him a majority of his congregation, and 
retaining possession of the church edifice in Lexington. The portion adhering 
to the Presbyterian communion erected a new building ; and in 1795, called 
the Rev. James Welch to the pastoral charge. 

Eight Missioners of the Synod entered Kentucky in the following order, viz: 
Robert Marshall in 1791; Carey H. Allen and William Calhoon in 1792 ; John 
P. Campbell and Samuel Rannells in 1794 ; Robert Stuart and Robert Wilson 
in 1798 ; and John Lyle in 1800. 

Rev. ROBERT MARSHALL was a native of Ireland, emigrating to Pennsylvania 
in his 12th year. He enlisted in the American army when sixteen years'of age, 
and was in six general engagements in the revolutionary war, one of which was 
the hard-fought battle of Monmouth, where he narrowly escaped with his life, a 
bullet grazing his locks. He was licensed by Redstone presbytery to preach 
the gospel, and after his removal to Kentucky, was ordained, in 1793, pastor of 
Bethel and Blue spring churches. He was an active leader in the great revival 
of 1800, and carried away by the torrent of enthusiasm that swept over Kentucky. 
In 1803, he embraced the views of the New Lights, but afterwards saw his error, 
and, in 1811, returned to the bosom of the church. In 1812, he was reinstated 
in the pastoral charge of the Bethel church, where he continued till his decease 
in 1833, at the advanced age of 73. As a preacher, Mr. Marshall was clear, 


logical, systematic, and adhered closely to his text. He was occasionally calm, 
mild and persuasive; but more generally warm, vehement, and even startling in 
his language and manner, particularly when he attempted to rouse and impress 
his audience. 

Rev. CAREY H. ALLEN, on the llth of October, 1794, was ordained pastor of 
Paint Lick and Silver creek churches. He was a mirthful, fun loving, pleasant 
companion, and a great wit and satirist. Sanguine and impulsive, his sallies 
partook occasionally of no little eccentricity. On his way to Kentucky, he 
put up for the night at a house where the young people had assembled to 
dance. The handsome stranger was invited to join them, and no denial would be 
taken. At length he suffered himself to be led to the floor, and to have a partner 
assigned him, when all at once he called to the musician " Stop ! I am always 
in the habit," said he, " when I enter on any business that I am unaccustomed 
to, first to ask the blessing of God upon it. Now, as I find myself in new and 
unexpected circumstances, I beg permission to implore the Divine direction in 
the matter." Suiting the action to the word, he dropped on his knees, and poured 
forth a prayer in his characteristic impassioned manner : then, springing to his 
feet he followed the prayer with a powerful and eloquent exhortation. Mute with 
astonishment at such an unlooked-for interruption, the company stood spell- 
bound. They were enchained by eloquence such as they had never listened to 
before ; the orator's burning words sank into their souls, and found an echo in 
their consciences ; death and judgment flashed their terrors before their eyes ; and 
they felt how unprepared they were to meet their God. Bursting into tears, they 
besought him to tell them what they must do to be saved. He remained and 
preached in the neighborhood a few days ; and several hopeful conversions were 
the happy result of a measure which many would consider of questionable pro- 
priety, and which it must be admitted, in less skillful hands, might have proved 
a signal failure. Mr. Allen was a man of highly popular talents, impassioned 
eloquence and ardent zeal. He was remarkably fluent his style original and 
forcible and he never failed to make a powerful impression wherever he went. 
After a brief ministry of less than two years, he was carried off by consumption 
amid flattering prospects of usefulness, on the 5th of August, 1795. 

The Rev. JOHN POAGE CAMPBELL, M. D., unquestionably the most brilliant in 
this constellation of missionaries, was born in Augusta county, Va., in 1767, 
and removed to Kentucky with his father when fourteen years of age. He gradu- 
ated at Hampden Sidney in 1790, and in 1792 was licensed to preach. Such 
was the esteem in which he was held, that he was at once associated with his 
preceptor, (Dr. Moses Hoge), as co-pastor of Lexington, Oxford, New Mon- 
mouth and Timber Ridge congregations. In 1795, he took up his abode in Ken- 
tucky, and his first charge was the churches of Smyrna and Flemingsburg. He 
afterwards exercised his ministry in various places, among which were Danville, 
Nicholasville, Cherry Spring, Versailles, Lexington, and Chillicothe; and in 
1811, he officiated as chaplain to the legislature. Dr. Campbell possessed an 
acute and discriminating mind ; was an accurate and well read theologian; an 
able polemic; and decidedly the most talented, popular, and influential minister 
of his day. His pen was very prolific. His published writings were numerous 
and able, among them Strictures on Stone's Letters on the Atonement Essays 
on Justification Letters to Craighead A Sermon on Christian Baptism The 
Pelagian Detected, a Reply to Craighead An Answer to Jones, and Review of 
Robinson's History of Baptism, &c., &c. Dr. Campbell was married three 
times, and on his demise, left a family of nine children. His death occurred on 
the 4th of November, 1814, at the age of 53, in the vicinity of Chillicothe, Ohio. 

The Rev. SAMUEL RANNELLS was born in Hampshire county, Va., December 
10th, 1765. He was licensed in 1794, and the next spring visited Kentucky as 
one of the synod's missionaries. In 1796, he was ordained over the united 
churches of Paris and Stonermouth, which charge he retained for twenty-two 
years, until his death, March 24th, 1817, in the 52d year of his age. He was a 
man of eminent piety, of exemplary conduct, and of respectable talents remark- 
ably gifted in prayer, and a zealous and indefatigable minister. 


The Rev. ROBERT STUART came to Kentucky in 1798. In December of the 
same year, he was appointed Professor of Languages in Transylvania University, 
but resigned in the year following. During the year 1803, he preached to the 
church of Salem; and in 1804, took charge of Walnut Hill church, about six 
miles east of Lexington, which he continued to retain for nearly forty years. He 
rias performed much laborious service in the church is a man of rare pru- 
dence and discretion and is esteemed by all who know him, as "an Israelite 
indeed, in whom there is no guile." This venerable-father still lives, in the 75th 
year of his age, while most of his early companions in the ministry of Kentucky, 
have gone to their rest. 

The Rev. ROBERT WILSON was descended from ancestors whom persecution had 
driven from the north of Ireland to western Virginia. He entered Kentucky as 
a missionary in 1798, and on the expiration of his engagement, married and set- 
tled in Washington, Mason county, where he remained till his death, October 31, 
1822, in the fiftieth year of his age. He was an amiable and estimable man, 
possessing great equanimity of temper, and remarkable throughout his whole 
ministerial career, for his active, humble and devoted piety. While his labors 
were signally blessed among his own flock, it was through his unwearied exertions 
that the churches of Augusta and Maysville were organized ; and those of Smyrna 
and Flemingsburg owed to him their preservation when languishing without a 

The Rev. JOHN LVLE was a native of Rockbridge county, Va. born on 20th 
October, 1769. He was licensed to preach the gospel in 1795. In 1797, he came 
to Kentucky as a missionary, and in 1800 took charge of Salern church, where he 
remained for several years. Mr. Lyle subsequently removed to Paris, where he 
established a female academy, which became one of the most flourishing in the 
state, embracing from 150 to 200 pupils. In 1809, he declined teaching, but con- 
tinued in the active discharge of his ministerial labors until 1825, on the 22d of 
July of which year he departed this life. He bore a prominent part in the trying 
scenes through which the church was called to pass during the early period of his 
ministry. He was a man of sound judgment and studious habits ; his manner, 
in the pulpit, feeling and earnest, and his matter sensible. As an evidence of 
the blessed fruits of his faithful, earnest and affectionate style of preaching, on 
one occasion, at Mount Pleasant, the Rev. William L. McCalla noted the names 
of thirty-three persons impressed by the sermon, thirty-one of whom afterward 
became respectable members of the church. 

REV. ARCHIBALD CAMERON. [A sketch of this distinguished divine, prepared 
by a friend, but too long for insertion under this head, will be found under the 
head of Shelby county.] 

Rev. JOSEPH P. HOWE came from North Carolina in 1794, and was ordained in 
July, 1795, over Little Mountain (Mount Sterling) and Springfield. He was a 
good man prayed and sang well and took a conspicuous part in the Great Re- 
vival. He died in 1830. 

Rev. JAMES WELCH, from Virginia, was ordained pastor of the Lexington and 
Georgetown churches, in 1796, in which charge he continued till 1804. He was 
obliged to practice medicine for the support of his family. In 1799, he was ap- 
pointed professor of ancient languages in the Transylvania University, which 
station he filled for several years. 

to Kentucky about the close of the last century, became Shakers the latter still 

Rev. JOHN HOWE was installed pastor of Beaver creek and Little Barren, in 
April, 1798. He is still living, and has been for many years connected with the 
church at Greensburg. 


Many other ministers came to Kentucky about the close of the last century, 
among them the Rev. WILLIAM ROBINSON, who, in 1804, was dismissed to Wash- 
ington Presbytery ; Rev. SAMUEL FINLETT, from South Carolina ; Rev. JAMES 
VANCE, from Virginia ; Rev. JAMES KEMPER, and Rev. SAMUEL B. ROBERTSON, 
and Rev. JOHN BOWMAN, and Rev. JOHN THOMPSON, from North Carolina. 

Rev. JAMES BLYTHE, D. D., was among the early and distinguished preachers 
in the field. He was born in North Carolina in 1765, and came to Kentucky, as 
a licentiate, in 1791. In July, 1793, he was ordained pastor of Pisgah and Clear 
creek churches. To these churches he ministered, as pastor or stated supply, for 
upwards of forty years. Dr. Blythe took an active part in the establishment of 
the Kentucky academy. When that institution, in 1798. was merged in the Uni- 
versity of Transylvania, he was appointed professor of Mathematics, Natural 
Philosophy, Astronomy, and Geography ; and, subsequently, on the resignation 
of Mr. Moore, fulfilled for twelve or fifteen years the duties of acting president. 

On the election of Dr. Holly, as president, in 1818, Dr. Blythe was trans- 
ferred to the chair of Chemistry in th'e medical department, which situation he 
retained till 1831, when he resigned. 

As a preacher, Dr. Blythe was full of energy and animation, in his earlier career ; 
in his latter years, he yielded more to the softer emotions. His native strength 
of character, prompt decision, and practical turn, enabled him to acquit himself 
creditably in every situation ; while, in deliberative bodies, and the courts of the 
church, these qualities gave him a marked ascendency, to which his portly 
figure and commanding appearance contributed not a little. He died in 1842, 
aged seventy-seven years. 

In the year 1820, died the Rev. JAMES McCnoRD. He was born in Baltimore 
in 1785, and removed to Lexington when five years of age. His education was 
liberal, and at an early age he proceeded to read law with the Hon. Henry Clay. 
Becoming pious, he devoted his life to the ministry. He was chosen the first 
pastor of the second Presbyterian church of Lexington in 1815, which situation 
he held till the year 1819, when he removed to Paris. His published writings 
were considerable, among them two volumes of sermons. Mr. McChord was a 
remarkably brilliant man possessing a rapid and comprehensive intellect, a 
glowing and gorgeous style, and an exuberant imagination. His successors in 
the second or McChord church, were able and eloquent men the Rev. John Breck- 
inridge in 1823 ; Rev. John C. Young in 1829 ; Rev. Robert Davidson in 1832 ; 
Rev. John D. Matthews in 1841 ; and Rev. John H. Brown, in 1844. 

The Rev. GIDEON BLACKBURN was one of the most eloquent divines of the 
west ; and his early history presents a most remarkable instance of perseverance 
in the face of difficulties. Left an orphan and penniless when about eleven years 
of age (being defrauded out of the handsome patrimony of twenty thousand dol- 
lars), a kind school-master gave him instruction gratuitously; and he obtained a 
situation in a saw-mill, where he tended the saw from dark till day-light, study- 
ing by a fire of pine-knots. In this way he earned a dollar every night, and 
made rapid proficiency in his studies. Thus he struggled on till ready to enter 
college. To defray this new expense, he labored as a surveyor for four months ; 
frequently sleeping in a cane-brake to avoid the Indians, and having no shelter 
from the rain but a blanket. He received for his pay fourteen horses, valued at 
forty dollars a-piece. These he took to Maryland and sold for fifteen hundred 
dollars ; with which he discharged all his debts, and went through Dickinson 
college. Thus early enured to hardships, he was admirably fitted for the arduous 
duties of a missionary to the Cherokee Indians, to which he was appointed by 
the general assembly in 1803, when 31 years of age. In 1827, he was appointed 
President of Centre College at Danville, which situation he filled till 1830, 
when he was succeeded by the Rev. Dr. Young. The last years of his life 
were spent in Illinois. 

The Rev. JOHN MCFARLAND and the Rev. DAVID NELSON were clergymen of 
a high order of talent. The former died, while pastor of the Paris church, in 
1828 ; the latter departed this life, in Illinois, in 1844. 


The Rev. THOMAS CLELLAND, D. D., is among the few surviving ministers 
who took part in the great Revival commencing in 1800. He was born in Mary- 
land in 1777, and came to Kentucky when very young. He has been for nearly 
half a century, an active, laborious and remarkably successful herald of the cross. 
His printed works have been numerous and popular. At the age of three score 
and ten, there seems to be but little abatement of his mental and physical ener- 

The Rev. JOHN BRKCKINRIDGE, D. D., was the sixth of nine children of the 
Hon. John Breckinridge, (of whose life a sketch will be found under the head 
of Breckinridge county). He was born at Cabell's-Dale, on North Elkhorn, on 
the 4th day of July, 1797 ; and died at the same place on the 4th day of August, 
1841, having just completed his 44th year. Some account has been given of his 
paternal ancestors, in the notice of his father; and of his maternal, in that of his 
elder brother, Joseph Cabell Breckinridge. His father died when he was nine 
years old ; and from that time, he was reared under the care of his widowed 
mother, and brother Cabell, who was his guardian. His education was conduct- 
ed at the best schools which Kentucky afforded, and completed at Princeton 
college, N. J., where he spent about three years as a pupil, and graduated with 
great distinction in the autumn of 1818, having just completed his 21st year. He 
was destined by his family for the profession of the law. During his residence 
in Princeton college, he became a subject of divine grace, and united himself 
with the Presbyterian church, to which his paternal ancestors had been attached 
from the period of the reformation of the sixteenth century, in Scotland ; and 
determined, against the earnest wishes of all his immediate family not one of 
whom was at that time a professor of religion to devote himself to the gospel 
ministry, and, as it is believed, to the work of foreign missions. The providen- 
tial dealings of God constantly frustrated this latter intention, but the former was 
carried into effect; and after spending several years more in Princeton, as a 
student of the theological seminary there, and part of the time as a tutor in the 
college, he was licensed and ordained a minister of Jesus Christ, in the Presby- 
terian church of the United States. 

In 1822, he was chaplain of the House of Representatives of the Congress of 
the United States. In 1823, he settled in Lexington, Ky., as pastor of the Mc- 
Chord church of that place. In 1826, he removed to the city of Baltimore, as 
co-pastor of the late Rev. Dr. Glendy ; and afterwards, as sole pastor of the sec- 
ond Presbyterian church in that city. In 1831, he removed to the city of Phila- 
delphia, as secretary and general agent of the board of education of the Pres- 
byterian church. In 1836, the general assembly of that church elected him a 
professor in the theological seminary at Princeton, New Jersey, to which place 
he then removed. Upon the organization of the board of foreign missions by the 
Presbyterian church, he was elected its secretary and general agent, and contin- 
ued at the head of the operations of that board from about 1838 to 1840. At the 
period of his death, he was the pastor elect of the Presbyterian church in the 
city of New Orleans, and president elect of the university of Oglethorpe, in 

He was a man of extraordinary gifts. To great gentleness and refinement of 
manners and feelings, he added remarkable correctness and vigor of purpose and 
force of will. Ardent and intrepid, as ever man was, he was also patient of labor, 
calm and wary in the formation of his designs, and indomitable in the resolution 
with which he pursued his objects. His success in life was, of necessity, striking 
and universal ; and at the period of his death, though he had scarcely attained 
the meridian of life, he was probably as universally known, and as universally 
admired and loved, as any minister of the gospel in America had ever been. A 
more generous, disinterested and benevolent man, never lived. His talents were 
of a high order; and in the midst of a life of incessant activity, he acquired very 
extensive learning in his immediate profession, and was justly and highly dis- 
tinguished for the compass and elegance of his general attainments. As a pub- 
lic speaker, and especially as a pulpit orator, few of his generation equalled 
him and taken for all in all, hardly one excelled him. So greatly was he ad- 
mired and loved, and so high was the public confidence in him, that calls and in- 
vitations to churches, colleges, and every sort of public employment, suitable to 




his calling as a Christian minister, were continually pressed upon him from every 
section of the United States. His connection with the great movements and 
controversies' of his age, so far as they bore a moral or religious aspect, was 
close and constant. A few hours before his death, and almost as his last words, 
he uttered these sublime words : " I am a poor sinner, who have worked hard, 
and had constantly before my mind one great object THE CONVERSION OF THE 
WORLD." It was a true and an honest synopsis of his life and labors. 

One of the most extraordinary and scandalous events that ever occurred, was 
the attempt made five years after the death of this good and great man, by cer- 
tain Roman Catholics of St. Louis and elsewhere, to prove that he had died a 
convert to their religion a religion which he spent many years of his life in the 
most ardent efforts to confute and expose and in regard to which, the evidence 
was perfectly conclusive that, to the end of his life, he thought the worse of it, 

he more and more examined it. 

In personal appearance, he was a man of the middle stature lightly, but 
finely and elegantly made and possessed of great strength and activity. His 
features wore an habitual aspect of mingled gentleness, sadness, and almost 
severity. His eyes and hair were light hazle. He was twice married the first 
time, to a daughter of the Rev. Dr. Miller, of New Jersey ; the second time, to 
a daughter of Colonel Babcock, of Connecticut. His second wife, and three 
children by the first, and one by the second marriage, survive him. 


or THE 



THE glowing accounts of the surpassing beauty and fertility of Kentucky, fur- 
nished by the early pioneers on their return to the bosom of their families in 
North Carolina and Virginia, created a deep sensation throughout the western 
borders of these states, and awakened a spirit of adventure, which soon extended 
to Maryland and other adjoining states. Large bodies of emigrants began to 
pour into the newly discovered and but half explored wilderness, inhabited till 
then only by wild beasts and by roving bands of savages. The daring spirit of 
Boone, Harrod and Logan was soon communicated to large masses of popula- 
tion ; and the consequence was, that in less than a quarter of a century from its 
first discovery or exploration, Kentucky had a sufficient population to be admitted 
as one of the independent states of this great confederacy; the second that was 
added to the venerable THIRTEEN, which had fought the battles of independence. 

Maryland shared abundantly in the enthusiasm which had already set one- 
fourth of the adjacent populations in motion towards the west. The Catholics 
who settled in Kentucky, came principally from this state, which had been 
founded by Lord Baltimore, and a band of colonists professing the Roman 
Catholic religion. Bold, hardy, adventurous and strongly attached to their faith, 
but tolerant towards those of other denominations, the Catholic emigrants to 
Kentucky, proved not unworthy of their ancestors, who had been the first to un- 
furl on this western continent, the broad banner of universal freedom, both civil 
and religious.* They cheerfully underwent the labors, privations and dangers, 

* Bancroft in his History of the United States, (Vol.1. Maryland), awards this praise to the Catholic 
oelouuu of Maryland ; and so do our other historians, passim. 


to which all the early emigrants were exposed ; and they made common cause 
with their brethren in providing for the security of their new homes in the wil- 
derness, and in repelling Indian invasions. Several of their number were killed 
or dragged into captivity on their way to Kentucky ; others passed through stir- 
ring adventures, and made hair-breadth escapes. 

The first Catholic emigrants to Kentucky, with whose history we are ac- 
quainted, were Dr. Hart and William Coomes. These came out in the spring 
of 1775, and settled at Harrod's station. Here Dr. Hart engaged in the practice 
of medicine ; and the wife of William Coomes opened a school for children. 
Thus in all probability, the first practising physician and the first school teacher 
of our infant commonwealth were both Roman Catholics. A few years later they 
removed with their families to Bardstown, in the vicinity of which most of the 
Catholic emigrants subsequently located themselves. Previously to their removal, 
however, they were both actively employed in the defence of Harrod's Station' 
during its memorable siege by the Indians in 1776-77. William Coomes was 
with the party which first discovered the approach of the savages ; one of his 
companions was shot dead at his side ; and he made a narrow escape with his 

In the year 1785 a large colony of Catholics emigrated to Kentucky from 
Maryland, with the Hay dens and Lancasters, and settled chiefly on Pottinger's 
creek, at a distance of from ten to fifteen miles from Bardstown. They were 
followed in the spring of the next year, by another colony led out by captain 
James Rapier, who located himself in the same neighborhood. In 1787, Thomas 
Hill and Philip Miles brought out another band of Catholic emigrants, and they 
were followed in 1788, by Robert Abell, and his friends; and in 1790-91, by 
Benedict Spalding and Leonard Hamilton, with their families and connexions. 
The last named colonists settled on the Rolling Fork, a branch of Salt river, 
in the present county of Marion. 

In the spring of the year 1787, there were already about fifty Catholic families 
in Kentucky. They had as yet no Catholic clergyman to administer to their 
spiritual wants: and they felt the privation most keenly. Upon application to 
the Very Rev. John Carroll, of Baltimore, then the ecclesiastical superior of all 
the Catholics in the United States, they had the happiness to receive as their 
first pastor the Rev. Mr. Whelan, a zealous and talented Irish priest, who had 
served as chaplain in the French navy, which had come to our assistance in the 
struggle for independence. He remained with his new charge till the spring of 
1790, when he returned to Maryland by the way of New Orleans. 

After his departure, the Catholics of Kentucky were again left in a destitute 
condition for nearly three years ; when they were consoled by the appearance 
among them of the Rev. Stephen Theodore Badin, who was sent out as their 
pastor by bishop Carroll, of Baltimore, in the year 1793. This excellent, learned, 
zealous and indefatigable religious pioneer of our state, still lingering in venera- 
ble old age above the horizon of life, labored with unremitting zeal among the 
Catholics of our state for more than thirty years, and even after this long term of 
service, though worn down with previous exertion, and induced to travel and take 
some relaxation for his health, he still continued to work at intervals in the vine- 
yard which he had so dearly loved and so long cultivated. 

His adventures and hardships would fill a volume; and the varied incidents of 
his remarkable life cannot even be alluded to in this brief sketch. Wherever 
there was sickness or spiritual destitution ; wherever error or vice was to be 
eradicated, and virtue inculcated; wherever youth was to be instructed and 
trained to religious observances ; wherever, in a word, his spiritual ministrations 
were most needed, there he was sure to be found laboring with all his native 
energy, for the good of his neighbor. Difficulties and dangers, which would 
have appalled a heart less stout and resolute, were set at naught by this untiring 
man. He traversed Kentucky on horseback hundreds of times on missionary 
duty; and he spent nearly half his time in the saddle. Through rain and 
storm, through hail and snow; along the beaten path and through the trackless 
wilderness, by day and by night, he might be seen going on his errand of mercy; 
often for years together, alone in the field, and always among the foremost to 
labor, even when subsequently joined by other zealous Catholic missionaries. 
He was intimate with the most distinguished men of .Kentucky in the. .ea.rljc 


timea, and his politeness, learning, affability and wit, made him always a wel- 
come guest at their tables. 

When he first came to Kentucky in 1793, he estimated the number of Catho- 
lic families in the state at three hundred; he has lived to see this number swell 
to more than six thousand. When he first entered on this missionary field, there 
was not a Catholic church in the entire commonwealth, and there were few, if 
any, Catholic schools; at present there are more than forty churches, besides a 
great number of missionary stations, about forty Catholic priests, one religious 
establishment for men, two colleges for young men, four female religious in- 
stitutions, eleven academies for girls, five or six charitable institutions : besides 
an ecclesiastical seminary, and some minor schools. The entire Catholic popula- 
tion of the State, may be now estimated at thirty thousand. 

After having remained alone in Kentucky for nearly four years, Rev. M. Badin 
was joined by another zealous Catholic missionary, like himself a native of 
France ; the Rev. M. Fournier, who reached the State in February, 1797. Two 
years later in February, 1799, the two missionaries were cheered by the arrival 
of another, the Rev. M. Salmon, likewise a Frenchman. But these two last named 
clergymen did not long survive the arduous labors of the mission. M. Salmon 
after a serious illness contracted by exposure, was suddenly killed by a fall from 
his horse near Bardstown, on the 9th of November, 1799; and the Rev. M. Fournier 
died soon after on the Rolling Fork, probably from the rupture of a blood-vessel. 

Their places were filled by the Rev. Mr. Thayer, a native of New England, 
who had once been a Congregational minister in Boston, but had from convic- 
tion become a Catholic, and had been promoted to the ministry in our church. 
He arrived in Kentucky in 1799 ; having been sent out, like the rest, by bishop 
Carroll, of Baltimore, the venerable patriarch of the Catholic church in 
America ; and he remained in the State till 1803. After his departure, M. Badin 
was again left alone for about two years, until the year 1805. 

This year is memorable in our religious annals, as marking the arrival among 
us of one among the most active and efficient of our early missionaries the Rev. 
Charles Nerinckx, a native of Belgium, who, like many others of our first mis- 
sionaries, had been compelled to leave Europe in consequence of the disturbances 
caused by the French Revolution. Strong, healthy, robust, and full of faith and 
religious zeal, he was admirably suited to endure the hardships necessarily con- 
nected with our early missions. He shrank from no labor, and was disheartened 
by no difficulties. He labored without cessation, both bodily and mentally, for 
nearly twenty years, and he died on a missionary excursion to Missouri, in 1824. 
He erected in Kentucky no less than ten Catholic churches, in the building of 
which he often worked with his own hands. Two of these were of brick, and 
the rest of hewed logs. 

For many years he had charge of six large congregations, besides a great num- 
ber of minor stations, scattered over the whole extent of the State. Like M. 
Badin, he spent much of his time on horseback, and traveled by night as well as 
by day. On his famous horse Printer, he very often traveled sixty miles in the 
day; and to save time, he not unfrequently set out on his journeys at sunset. He 
often swam swollen creeks and rivers, even in the dead of winter; he frequently 
slept in the woods : and on one occasion, in what is now Gray son county, he was 
beset by wolves during a whole night, when he was saved, under the divine pro- 
tection, by his presence of mind in sitting on his horse and keeping his persecu- 
tors at bay by hallooing at the top of his voice. Exact in enforcing discipline, 
he was more rigid with himself than with any one else. He cared not for his 
bodily comfort, and was content with the poorest accommodations. He delighted 
to visit the poor, and to console them in their afflictions ; while children and ser- 
vants were the special objects of his pastoral solicitude. 

In order to promote female piety and education, this good man founded the 
Sisterhood of Loretto, in April, 1812. The objects of this establishment were; 
to enable those young ladies who wished to retire from the world, and to devote 
themselves wholly to prayer and the exercises of charity, to be useful to them- 
selves and to others, by diffusing the blessings of a Christian education among 
young persons of their own sex, especially among the daughters of the poor. 
They were also to receive and rear up orphan girls, who, if left on the cold char- 
ities of the world, might have gone to ruin themselves, and have become an 


occasion of ruin to others. The institution succeeded even beyond his most san 
guine expectations. Within the twelve years which elapsed from its establish- 
ment to the death of its founder, the number of sisters who devoted themselves 
to this manner of life had already increased to more than a hundred ; and they 
had under their charge more than two hundred and fifty girls, distributed through 
six different schools, besides many orphans, whom they fed, clothed, and educated 
gratuitously. The institution now reckons about one hundred and eighty mem- 
bers ; and besides the mother house, which is at Loretto, in Marion county, it has 
eight branch establishments, five of which are in Kentucky, and three in Mis- 
souri. All of these have female schools attached to them, in which young ladies 
are taught not only the elements of English education, but also the varied accom- 
plishments which fit them for the most refined society. 

In the spring of the year 1806, a new band of Catholic missionaries came to 
Kentucky, and established themselves at St. Rose's, near Springfield. They were 
the Rev. Messrs. Edward Fenwick,* Thomas Wilson, Wm. Raymond Tuite, and 
R. Anger; the first a native ot Maryland, and the three last Englishmen. They 
were all of the order of St. Dominic. They took charge of a considerable por- 
tion of the Catholic missions, and labored with great zeal and efficiency in the 
vineyard. Connected with their institution were a theological seminary and a 
college for young men, both of which continued to flourish for many years. 

About a mile from St. Rose's, there was also established, at a later period, the 
still flourishing female institution of St. Magdalene's, conducted by sisters of 
the third order of St. Dominic, which has now a branch establishment at Somer- 
set, Ohio. This latter institution, the permanent establishment of which is 
mainly due to the enlightened zeal of Bishop Miles, of Nashville, has done great 
good in promoting the diffusion of female education among all classes of our 

In the fall of the year 1805, the Trappists came to Kentucky with the Rev. 
Urban Guillet, their superior; and they remained in the State, at their establish- 
ment on Pottinger's creek, near Rohan's knob, for about four years, when they 
removed to Missouri, and subsequently to Illinois. They were a body of religious 
monks who devoted themselves to fasting and prayer, and lived retired from the 
world. They were, however, of great assistance to the infant Catholic missions 
of Kentucky, not only by the influence of their prayers and good example, but 
also by their efforts to promote education, especially among the children of the 
poor. They established a school for boys, in which manual labor and instruc- 
tion in the mechanical arts were combined with a religious training and the 
teaching of the ordinary rudiments of an English education. 

In the year 1811, the Catholics of our State were cheered by the arrival among 
them of their first bishop, the Rt. Reverend Dr. Flaget, who had been consecrated 
in Baltimore by Bishop Carroll, on the 4th of November of the previous year. 
This venerable missionary pioneer, now in his eighty-fourth year, had been 
already in the west, having been stationed for two years at Post Vincennes, as 
early as 1792, shortly after his arrival in the United States from France, his 
native country. When he passed Cincinnati in that year, there were only four 
rude cabins in this now flourishing city; and Louisville was but little farther ad- 
vanced. How different is the entire west now, from what it was on occasion of 
his first visit, or even on that of his second in 1811 ! What was then an unre- 
claimed wilderness, filled with wild beasts and still fiercer savages, is now a 
smiling garden of civilization. 

We cannot attempt to write even a rapid sketch of the life and labors of Bishop 
Flaget in Kentucky, during the last thirty-six years; a volume would be neces- 
sary to do full justice to his excellent and admirable character. The incidents 
of his life are familiar to all the Catholics of the State ; while the many benev- 
olent and literary institutions he has reared, are the best monuments to his mem- 
ory. Suffice it to say, that he has ever blended the active benevolence and 
charity of the Christian missionary with the amiable politeness of the accom- 
plished gentleman. He had and still has a multitude of warm friends, even 
among the dissenting communions : he never had one enemy. 

Among the companions of Bishop Flaget, when he came to take up his 

Subsequently the first bishop of Cincinnati. 


permanent abode in Kentucky, were the Rev. J. B, M. David, and the Rev. G. 
J. Chabrat the latter not yet a priest; both of whom afterwards were succes- 
sively appointed his coadjutors. The latter was the first priest ordained by Bishop 
Flaget in Kentucky. 

The Rev. Mr. David, or, as he was familiarly called, Father David, was con- 
secrated bishop in the newly dedicated cathedral of Bardstown, on the 15th of 
August, 1819 ; and he died on the 12th of July, 1841, in the eighty-first year 
of his age- He was the founder of the theological seminary of Bardstown, and 
of the order of Sisters of Charity, in Kentucky. In the former institution, founded 
in 1811, were educated most of the clergymen now on the missions of Ken- 
tucky, many of them under his own eye. The society of Sisters of Charity was 
commenced at St. Thomas, four miles from Bardstown, in November, 1812; and 
the number of its members increased apace, until it was soon able to send out 
new colonies to different parts of the State. The society now has four branch 
establishments under the general supervision of the parent institution at Naza- 
reth, near Bardstown ; it has more .than seventy-five members ; it educates 
annually about five hundred young ladies, and has charge of an infirmary and 
orphan asylum, in the latter of which there are at present about seventy orphan 
girls, rescued from want, and trained to virtue and learning. 

Among the most zealous and efficient deceased Catholic clergymen of 
our State, we may reckon the Rev. William Byrne and the Rev. G. A. M. Elder ; 
the former an Irishman, and the founder of St. Mary's college, in Marion county ; 
the latter a Kentuckian, and the founder of St. Joseph's college, in Bardstown. 
These two institutions, which have continued to flourish ever since, and which 
have been of immense advantage to the cause of education in Kentucky, stand 
forth the fittest and most durable monuments to their memory. Having been for 
many years bound together by ties of the closest Christian friendship, they were 
both ordained together in the cathedral of Bardstown, by Bishop David, on the 
18th of September, 1819. 

As an evidence of the unconquerable energy of these two men, we may re- 
mark, that the two institutions which they respectively founded, and in the 
welfare of which they felt so lively an interest, were both reduced to ashes 
under their very eyes, St. Mary's college at two different times ; and that they 
were immediately rebuilt by their founders, who, far from being discouraged by 
the afflicting disaster, seemed in consequence of it to be clothed, on the contrary, 
with new vigor and resolution. No difficulties terrified them ; no obstacles were 
deemed by them insurmountable. The State never contributed one dollar to 
either of these institutions, nor were they erected by the wealth of their founders 
or the liberal contributions of individuals. The persevering industry and untir- 
ing energy of two men, wholly unprovided with pecuniary means, and yet deter- 
mined to succeed at all hazards, built up, rebuilt, and maintained those two institu- 
tions of learning. They and their associates asked no salary, no worldly retribu- 
tion for their labors ; and the entire proceeds of the institutions thus went towards 
paying the debts contracted for the erection of them. So great was the confi- 
dence reposed in the two founders by all classes of the community, that they had 
credit, to an unlimited amount ; and it is almost needless to add, that not one of 
their creditors ever lost a dollar by the trust reposed in their integrity and ability 
to meet all their liabilities. 

The Rev. William Byrne died of the cholera, at St. Mary's college, on the 
5th of June, 1833 ; and his friend followed him on the 28th of September, 1838. 
The latter died at St. Joseph's college, of an affection of the heart, which he had 
contracted many years before, while a student at Emmetsburgh college, Maryland. 
Both fell victims of their zeal in the discharge of the duties of their office ; both 
died in the arms of their dearest friends, in the institutions which they had reared, 
and which they left behind them as their sepulchral monuments. 

Here we must close this hasty and imperfect sketch. The narrow limits by 
which we were confined, prevented us from speaking of several other things wor- 
thy of notice in our religious history ; while we have on purpose abstained from 
saying much of those wTio are still living, whose biographies will be more ap- 
propriately written when they shall be no more. 



I. Isaac Shelby, the first governor, took the oath of office on the 4th of June, 1792, under 

the first constitution. James Brown, secretary of state. 

II. James Garrard took the oath of office June 1, 1796. Harry Toulman, secretary. The 
present constitution was formed 1799. 

III. James Garrard, being eligible, was again elected governor ; Alexander S. Bullitt, lieu- 

tenant governor ; Harry Toulman secretary 1800. 

IV. Christopher Greenup, governor ; John Caldwell, lieutenant governor ; John Rowan, 

secretary 1804. 

V. Charles Scott, governor; Gabriel Slaughter, lieutenant governor; Jesse Bledsoe, 
secretary 1808. 

VI. Isaac Shelby, governor; Richard Hickman, lieutenant governor; Martin D. Hardin, 

secretary 1812. 

VII. George Madison, governor; Gabriel Slaughter, lieutenant governor; Charles S. Todd, 

secretary 1816. Governor Madison died at Paris, Kentucky, on the 14th October, 
1816, and on the 21st of the same month, Gabriel Slaughter, lieutenant governor, as- 
sumed the duties of executive. John Pope, and after him, Oliver G. Waggoner, 

VIII. John Adair, governor ; William T. Barry, lieutenant governor ; Joseph Cabell Breck- 

inridge, and after him, Thomas B. Monroe, secretary 1820. 

IX. Joseph Desha, governor ; Robert B. M'Afee, lieutenant governor ; William T. Barry, 

succeeded by James C. Pickett, secretary 1824. 

X. Thomas Metcalfe, governor; John Breathitt, lieutenant governor; George Robertson, 

succeeded by Thomas T. Cnttenden, secretary 1828. 

XI. John Breathitt, governor : James T. Morehead, lieutenant governor ; Lewis Sanders, 

jr., secretary. Governor Breathitt died on the 21st of February, 1834, and on the 
22d of the same month, James T. Morehead, the lieutenant governor, took the oath of 
office as governor of the state. John J. Crittenden, William Owsley and Austin P. 
Cox, were successively, secretary 1832. 

XII. James Clark, governor; Charles A. Wickliffe, lieutenant governor ; James M. Bul- 

lock, secretary. Governor Clark departed this life on the 27th September, 1839, 
and on the 5th of October, Charles A. Wickliffe, lieutenant governor, assumed the 
duties of Governor 1836. 

XIII. Robert P. Letcher, governor ; Manlius V. Thomson, lieutenant governor ; James 

Harlan, secretary 1840. 

XIV. William Owsley, governor ; Archibald Dixon, lieutenant governor ; Benjamin Har- 

din, George B. Kinkead and William D. Reed, successively, secretary 1844. 


In. Out. 

Adair, John 1805-06 

Barry, William T 1814-16 

TJ-1.U n HT C 181 1-14 

Bibb, George M 1 1829-35 

Bledsoe, Jesse 1813-15 

Breckinridge, John 1801-05 

Brown, John 1792-95 

r 1806-07 

Clay, Henry <> 1810-11 


r 1817-19 

Crittendaa, John J > 1835-41 

.... (1842-49 

In. Out 
Edwards, John ........ 1792-95 

Hardin, Martin D ....... 1816-17 

Johnson, Richard M ...... 1819-29 

Logan, William ....... 1819-20 

Marshall, Humphrey ..... 1795-1801 

Morehead, James T ...... 1841-47 

Pope, John . ........ 1807-13 

Rowan, John ........ 1825-31 

TalboUsham \\\\\\\ 

Thurston, John Buckner . . . . 1805-10 

Underwood, Joseph R ..... 1847-53 

Walkwr, George . ...... 4814-15 




Adair,John .......... 1831-33 

Allan, Chilton ......... 1831-3 

Anderson, Richard ....... 1817-21 

Anderson, S. H ......... 1839-41 

Andrews, L. W ......... 1839-43 

Barry, William T ........ 1810-11 

Beatty, Martin ......... 1833-35 

Bedinger, George M ....... 1803-07 

Bell, Joshua F ......... 1845-47 

Boyle, John .......... 1803-09 

Breckenridge, J. D ........ 1821-23 

Brown, William ........ 1819-21 

Buckner, Richard A ....... 1823-29 

Bullock, Wingfield ....... 1820-21 

Butler, William ........ 1839-43 

Caldwell, G. A ......... 1843-45 

Calhoun, John -. ....... 1835-39 

Campbell, John ........ 1837-38 

Chambers, John ....... 

Chilton, Thomas ....... 

Christie, Henry ....... 1809-11 


f 1811-14 
Clay, Henry ........ ? 1815-21 

Coleman, Nicholas D ...... 182931 

Daniel, Henry ......... 1827-33 

Davis, Amos ......... 1833-35 

Davis, Garret ......... 1839-47 

Davis, Thomas T ....... 1797-1803 

Desha, Joseph ......... 1807-19 

Duval, William P ........ 1813-15 

Fletcher, Thomas ....... IS 16-1 7 

Fowler, John ........ 1797-1807 

Gaither, Nathan 
Graves, William J 
Green, Willis 
Greenup, Christopher 
Grider, Henry 

Hardin, Benjamin 


Hawes, Albert G 
Hawes, Richard 
Hawkins, Joseph W 
Henry, Robert P 
Hopkins, Samuel 
Howard, Benjamin 
Johnson, Francis 
Johnson, James 

Johnson, Richard M 


Iii. Out. 
Johnson, John T ........ 1821-25 

Kincaid, John . . ....... 1829-33 

Lecompte, Joseph ..... . 1825-33 

Letcher, Robert P ........ 1823-33 

Love, James ......... 1833-35 

Lyon, Chittenden ....... 1827-35 

Lyon, Matthew ........ 1803-11 

Marshall, Thomas A ....... 1831-35 

Marshal], Thomas F ....... 1841-43 

Martin, John P ......... 1845-47 

McHatton, Robert ....... 1826-29 

McHenry, John H ....... .1845-47 

McKee, Samuel ........ 1809-17 

Menifee, Richard H ....... 1837-39 

Metcalfe, Thomas ....... 1819-29 

Montgomery, Thomas .... | JS 
Moore, Thomas P ....... 

Murray, John L ......... 1828-39 

New, Anthony , ...... < 1817-19 

(f 1821-23 
Ormsby, Stephen ....... 1811-17 

Orr, Alexander D ........ 1 792-97 

Owsley, Bryan Y ........ 1841-43 

Pope, John .......... 1837-43 

Pope, P. H ........... 1833-35 

Quarles, Tunstall ....... 1817-20 

Robertson, George ....... 1817-21 

Rowan, John ......... 1807-09 

Rumsey, Edward ....... 1837-39 

Sanford, Thomas ........ 1803-07 

Sharpe, Solomon P. . ... ... 1813-17 

Smith, John S ......... 1821-23 

Southgate, William W ...... 1837-39 

Speed, Thomas ........ 1817-19 

Sprigg, James C ......... 1841-43 

Stone, James ......... 1843-45 

Taul, Micah ......... 1815-17 

Thompson, John B ....... 1841-47 

Thompson, Philip ....... 1823-25 

Tibbatts, John W ........ 1843-47 

Tompkins, Christopher ..... 1831-35 

Trimble, David ........ 1817-27 

Triplett, Philip ........ 1839-43- 

Trumbo, Andrew ....... 1845-47 

Underwood, Joseph R ...... 1835-43 

Walker, David ........ 1817-20- 

Walton, Matthew ....... 1803-07 

White, David ......... 1823-25 

White, John ......... 1835-45- 

Wickliffe, Charles A ....... 1823-33- 

Williams, Sherrod ....... 1835-41 

Woodson, Samuel H ....... 1820-2$ 

Yancey, Joel ......... 1827-31 

Young, Bryan Y ........ 1845-47 

Young, William F ........ 1825-27 




MAY, 1785. 

Samuel McDowell, President. 
George Muter, 
Christopher Greenup, 
James Speed, 
Robert Todd, 
James Beard, 
Matthew Walton, 
James Trotter, 
Ebenezer Brooks, 
Caleb Wallace, 
Richard Terrell, 
. . . Clarke, 
Robert Johnson, 
John Martin, 


Benjamin Logan, 
Willis Green, 
Harry Innis, 
Levi Todd, 
Isaac Cox, 
Richard Taylor, 
Richard Steele, 
Isaac Morrison, 
James Garrard, 
John Edwards, 
George Wilson, 
. . . Payne, 
James Rogers, 

. Kincheloe. 

GUST, 1785. 

Samuel McDowell, President. Harry Innis, 

George Muter, John Edwards, 

Christopher Irvine, James Speed, 

William Kennedy, James Wilkinson, 

Benjamin Logan, James Garrard, 

Caleb Wallace, Levi Todd, 

John Coburn, John Craig, 

James Carter, Robert Patterson, 

Richard Terrell, Benjamin Sebastian, 

George Wilson, Philip B arbour, 

Isaac Cox, Isaac Morrison, 

Andrew Hines, Matthew Walton. 

James Rogers, 


Jefferson County. 
Richard Easton, 
Alexander Breckinridge, 
Michael Lackasang, 
Benjamin Sebastian, 
James Meriwether. 

Nelson County. 
Joseph Lewis, 
William McClung, 
John Caldwell, 
Isaac Cox, 
Matthew Walton. 

Fayette County. 
Levi Todd, 
John Fowler, 
Humphrey Marshall, 
Caleb Wallace, 
William Ward. 

Bourbon County. 
James Garrard, 
John Edwards, 

Benjamin Harrison, 
Edward Lyne, 
Henry Lee. 

Lincoln County. 
Benjamin Logan, 
John Logan, 
Isaac Shelby, 
William Montgomery, 
Walker Baylor. 

Madison County. 
William Irvine, 
John Miller, 
Higgerson Grubbs, 
Robert Rodes, 
David Crews. 

Mercer County. 
Samuel McDowell, 
Harry Innis, 
George Muter, 
William Kennedy, 
James Speed. 


Jefferson County. Nelson County. 

Richard Taylor, Isaac Morrison, 

Richard C. Anderson, John Caldwell, 

Alexander S. Bullitt, Philip Phillips, 

Abraham Kite, Joseph Burnett, 

Benjamin Sebastian. James Bard. 


Fayette County. William Montgomery, 

James Wilkinson,' Nathan Houston, 

Caleb Wallace, Willis Green. 

Thomas Marshall, Madison County. 

William Ward, William Irvine, 

John Allen. George Adams, 

Bourbon County- James French, 

James Garrard, Aaron Lewis, 

John Edwards, Higgerson Grubbs. 

Benjamin Harrison, Mercer County. 

John Grant, Samuel M'Dowell, 

John Miller. John Brown, 

Lincoln County. Harry Innis, 

Benjamin Logan, John Jouitt, 

Isaac Shelby, Christopher Greenup. 


Fayette County. Mercer County. 

Humphrey Marshall, Thomas Allen, 

John Fowler. Alexander Robertson. 

Jefferson County. 

Robert Breckinridge, Madison County. 

Rice Bullock. Green Clay, 

Lincoln County. William Irvine. 
John Logan, 

Henry Pauling. Bourbon County. 

Nelson County. Henry Lee, 

John Steele, John Edwards. 
Matthew Walton. 

The names of the following members of the Virginia legislature, from Kentucky, are 
given in Governor Morehead's Boonsborough address, viz: 

John Brown, Benjamin and John Logan, Esquire Boone, Swearingen, Thomas, John 
and Robert Todd, James Harrod, William M'Clung, John Steele, James Garrard, John 
Edwards, John Jewitt, William Pope and Richard Taylor. 


Fayette County. Thomas Clay, 

Hubbard Taylor, Thomas Kennedy, 

Thomas Lewis, Joseph Kennedy. 

George S. Smith, Mercer County. 

Robert Fryer, Samuel Taylor, 

James Crawford. Jacob Froman, 

Jefferson County. George Nicholas, 

Richard Taylor, David Rice, 

John Campbell, Samuel McDowell. 

Alexander S. Bullitt, Lincoln County. 

Benjamin Sebastian, Benjamin Logan, 

Robert Breckinridge. John Bailey, 

Bourbon County. Isaac Shelby, 

John Edwards, Benedict Sayre, 

James Garrard, William Montgomery. 

James Smith, Woodford County. 

John McKenny, John Watkins, 

Benjamin Harrison. Richard Young, 

Nelson County. William Steele, 

William Keen, Caleb Wallace, 

Matthew Walton, Robert Johnston. 

Cuthbert Harrison, Mason County. 

Joseph Hobbs, George Lewis, 

Andrew Hynes. Miles W. Conway, 

Madison County. Thomas Waring, 

Charles Kavendor, Robert Rankin, 

Higgerson Grubbs, John Wilson. 




Jefferson County* 
Alexander S. Bullitt, President, 
Richard Taylor. 

Bourbon County. 
John Allen, 
Charles Smith, 
Robert Wilmot, 
James Duncan, 
William Griffith, 
Nathaniel Rogers. 

Bracken County. 
Philip Buckner. 

Campbell County. 
Thomas Sanford. 

Clarke County. 
Robert Clarke, 
R. Hickman, 
William Sudduth. 

Christian County. 
Young Ewing. 

Fayette County. 
John Breckenridge, 
John McDowell, 
John Bell, 
H. Harrison, 
B. Thruston, 
Walter Carr. 

Franklin County* 
Henry Innis, 
John Logan. 

Fleming County. 
George Stockton. 

Garrard County. 
William M. Bledsoe. 

Green County. 
William Casey. 

Harrison County. 
Henry Coleman, 
William E. Boswell. 

Jessamine County. 
John Price. 

Lincoln County. 
William Logan, 
N. Huston. 

Logan County. 
John Bailey, 
Reuben Ewing. 

Mason County. 
Philemon Thomas, 
Thomas Marshall, Jr. 
Joshua Baker. 

Mercer County* 
Peter Brunner, 
John Adair, 
Thomas Allen, 
Samuel Taylor 

Madison County. 
Green Clay, 
Thomas Clay, 
William Irvine. 

Montgomery County. 
Jilson Payne. 

Nelson County. 
John Rowan, 
Richard Prather, 
Nicholas Minor. 

Shelby County. 
Benjamin Logan, 
Abraham Owen. 

Scott County. 
William Henry, 
Robert Johnson. 

Woodford County. 
Caleb Wallace, 
William Steele. 

Washington County. 
Felix Grundy, 
Robert A bell. 

Warren County. 
Alexander Davidson. 


Bourbon County. 


George M. Bedinger, 
John Waller, 
Charles Smith, 
James Smith, 
John M'Kenney. 

William Russel, 
John Hawkins, 
Thomas Lewis, 
Hubbard Taylor, 
James Trotter, 
Joseph Crockett, 
James M'Millan, 
John McDowell, 
Robert Patterson. 

Fayette County. 

John Edwards, 
Benjamim Harrison, 
Thomas Jones, 
Andrew Hood, 
John Allen. 

William Campbell, 
Edward Payne, 
John Martin, 
Abraham Bowman, 
Robert Todd, 
John Bradford, 
John Morrison, 
Gabriel Madison, 
Peyton Short 




Richard Taylor, 
Robert Breckinridge, 
Benjamin Roberts. 

William Montgomery, 
Henry Pawling, 
James Davis, 
Jesse Cravens. 

Higgerson Grubbs, 
Thomas Clay, 
John Miller. 

Alexander D. Orr, 
John Wilson. 

Samuel Taylor, 
John Jouitt, 
Jacob Frowman, 
Robert Mosby. 

William King, 
William Abell, 
Matthew Walton, 
Edmund Thomas, 
Joseph Hobbs, 
Joshua Hobbs. 

John Watkins, 
Richard Youn 
William Steele, 
John Grant. 

Jefferson County. 
Lincoln County. 

Madison County. 

Mason County. 
Mercer County. 

Nelson County. 
Woodford County. 


Alexander S. Bullitt, 
Richard C. Anderson, 
John Campbell. 

John Logan, 
Benjamin Logan, 
Isaac Shelby, 
Thomas Todd. 

William Irvine, 
Higgerson Grubbs, 
Thomas Clay. 

Robert Rankin 
George Stockton. 

Christopher Greenup, 
Harry Innis, 
Samuel McDowell, 
William Kennedy. 

Walter Beall, - 
John Caldwell, 
William May, 
Cuthbert Harrison, - 
Adam Shepherd, 
James Shepherd. 

John Watkins, 
George Muter, 
Richard Young -**** 
Robert Johnson. 


John Campbell, Jefferson county. 
John Logan, Lincoln county. 
Robert Todd, Fayette county. 
John Caldwell, Nelson county. 
William McDowell, Mercer county. 
Thomas Kennedy, Madison county. 

John Allen, Bourbon county. 
Robert Johnson, Woodford county. 
Alexander D. Orr, Mason county. 


Alexander S. Bullitt, Jefferson county. 
Peyton Short, Fayette county. 




Ninian Edwards, 
Benjamm Howard, 
William Clarke, 
John Pope, 
S. T. Mason, jr. 
Joseph M. White, 
Richard K. Call, 
Lilburn W. Boggs, 
John M'Lean, 
Henry Dodge, 
James B. Ray, 
Mr. Carlin, 
John Dunklin, 
C. W. Bird, 
James Brown, 

From whence. 
Logan county, 
Fayette county, 
Jefferson county, 
Washington county, 
Fayette county, 
Franklin county, 
Logan county, 
Fayette county, 
Logan county, 
Jefferson county, 
Boone county, 
Nelson county, 
Mercer county, 
Fayette county, 

Where stationed. 
Governor of Illinois. 
Governor of Missouri. 
Governor of Missouri. 
Governor of Arkansas. 
Governor of Michigan. 
Governor of Florida. 
Governor of Florida. 
Governor of Missouri. 
Governor of Illinois. 
Governor of Wisconsin. 
Governor of Indiana. 
Governor of Illinois. 
Governor of Missouri. 
Secretary North-west Territory 
Lieutenant Governor of Louisiana. 


Names. From whence. Where stationed. 

Robert Crittenden, Logan county, Acting Governor of Arkansas. 

Mr. Step, Scott county, Lieutenant Governor of Indiana. 

Mr. Ewing, Logan county, Lieutenant Governor of Illinois. 

Mr. Hubbard, Warren county, Lieutenant Governor of Illinois. 

Ratliffe Boon, Mercer county, Lieutenant Governor of Indiana. 

John Chambers, Mason county, Governor of Iowa. 

John Floyd, Jefferson county, Governor of Virginia. 


Henry Clay, Lexington, Minister Extraordinary to Ghent. 

James Brown, Lexington, Minister to France. 

Richard C. Anderson, Louisville, Minister to Colombia. 

Win. T. Barry, Lexington, Minister to Spain, 

James Shannon, Lexington, Charge to Central America. 

Ninian Edwards, Logan county, Minister to Mexico. 

Thomas P. Moore, Mercer county, Charge to Bogota. 

Robert B. M'Afee, , Mercer county, Charge^ to Bogota. 

Anthony Butler, Logan county, Charge to Mexico. 

Peter W. Grayson, Fayette county, Minister Plen. Texas to U. S. 

Charles S. Todd, Shelby county, Minister to Russia. 

James C. Pickett, Mason county, Charge to Peru. 

Robert Wicklifie, jr. Fayette county, Charge to Sardinia. 


Richard M. Johnson, Scott county, Vice President of United States. 


John Breckinridge, Fayette county, Attorney General United States. 

Henry Clay Lexington, Secretary of State United States. 

William T. Barry, Lexington, Post Master General United States. 

Amos KendaUj^ Frankiin county, Post Master General United States. 

Robert Johnson, % Franklin county, A s't. Post Master Gen. United States. 

James Boyle, Russellville, Major General United States Army. 

George Croghan, Jefferson county, Major General United States Army. 

Thomas S. Jesup, Fayette county, Major General United States Army. 

D. M'Reynolds, Russellville, Surgon General United States Army. 
John McLean, Mason county, Post Master General United States. 
Zachary Taylor Jefferson county, Major General United States Army. 
Isaac Shelby, Lincoln county, Secretary of War United States. 
Felix Grundy, Nelson county, Attorney General United States. 
John J. Crittenden, Frankfort, Attorney General United States. 
George M. Bibb, Louisville, Secretary of Treasury United States. 
Charles A. Wickliffe, Nelson county. Post Master General United States. 


John McLean, Mason county, Supreme Court United States. 

C. W. Bird, Fayette county, United States Judge, Ohio. 

Judge Lewis, Jessamine county, Supreme Court Louisiana. 

Francis L. Turner, Fayette county, Supreme Court Louisiana. 

Joseph E. Davis, Logan county, Supreme Court Mississippi. 

E. Turner, Fayette county, Supreme Court Mississippi. 
Thomas P. Davis, Madison county, United States Judge, Indiana. 
B. Johnson, Scott county, United States Judge, Arkansas. 
N. Pope, Jefferson county, United States Judge, Illinois. 
Henry Humphreys, Lexington, Supreme Court Texas, 
Thomas Todd, Frankfort, Supreme Court United States. 


Thomas Reed, Mercer county, From Missouri. 

Jarnes Brown, Lexington, From Louisiana. 

John M'Lean, Logan county, From Illinois. 

Dr. Linn, Jefferson county, From Missouri. 



Josiah S. Johnston, 
John M. Robinson, 
J. Norvell, 

D. R. Atchison, 

E. A. Hannegan, 

RobertG. Wilson, 
Robert Bishop, 
James Blythe, 
John P. Durbin, 
David Nelson, 
John Chamberlin, 
William H. M'Guffey, 
Robert J. Breckinridge, 

Mason county, 
Scott county, 
Fayette county, 
Mason county, 

From Louisiana. 
From Illinois. 
From Michigan. 
From Missouri. 
From Indiana. 


Mason county, President University, Athens, Ohio. 

Lexington, President University, Oxford, Ohio. 

Lexington, President 8. Hanover College, la. 

Augusta, President Dickinson College, Penn. 

Danville, President Theo. Seminary, Illinois. 

Danville, President Oakland College, Miss. 

Paris, President Cincinnati College, Ohio. 

Lexington, President Jefferson College, Penn. 


Years. Total. 

1790 73,677 . . 

1800 220,959 . . 


Blacks. Increase, Whites. Increase, Blacks. 
. . 12,430 
. . 43,344 147,282 30,914 

1810 406,511 80,560 185,552 37,217 

1820 564,317 120,732 147,806 40,171 

1830 688,844 165,350 124,527 44,618 

1840 779,828 182,258 110,981 16,908 

The population of Kentucky in 1 847 , with the same rate of increase as shown in the 
foregoing table to have taken place from 1830 to 1840, amounts to 847,860. In 1850, if 
the ratio of increase continue the same, the population of Kentucky will be 881,863. 



Census of 1840. 

County Towns. 




S,.ve.. | Tbjl 






1,605 8,466 
935 7,329 
1,059 5,452 
4,065 17,288 
1,951 9,763 
2,183 10,034 
6,325 14,478 
119 2,195 
819 7,053 
1,691 8,944 
1,320 6,334 
515 3,898 
2,171 10,365 
911 9,794 
289 5,214 
731 3,966 
186 2.905 
531 4,939 
5,997 15,587 
3,902 10,802 
503 4,607 
188 3,863 
1,485 6,090 
1,960 8,331 
334 2,914 
558 5,535 
10,710 22,194 
1,992 13,268 
184 6,302 
2,849, 9,420 

Columbia . ... 









Allen .... 



Lawrenceburg .... 



Burlington . ... 



Augusta .... 



Shepherdsville .... 
Morgantown . . 



Wadesborough .... 





Christian . . 



Clav - - . 


Burkesville . . , 


Owensborough .... 
Brownsville . 

Estill . . 




Floyd . .... 






Census of 1840. 

County towns. 














1 6,357 






















Garrard . 

Lancaster .... 


Williamstown .... 


Gray son 


Greene . . . 

Greensburg . . . 

Greenup ...... 




Elizabeth . 


Harlan C. H 





Henderson . . 

Henderson . . . 


New Castle .... 




Jefferson . . . 

Louisville . . , 


Nicholasville .... 

Knox . 




Louisa . 



Lincoln . . . 






Lebanon . 


Maysville . . 

McCracken .... 






Tompkinsville .... 
Mount Sterling .... 
West Liberty 

Montgomery .... 
Morgan . 

Muhlenburg .... 


Bards town 

Nicholas ...... 

Carlisle .... 




La Grange 


New Liberty 


Falmouth . 


Perry C. H 

Pike ....... 



Rockcastle . 

Mount Vernon .... 

Russell . . 






Spencer . . . 





Cadiz . 


Bedford . . 

Union . . . 

Warren .... 

Bowling Green .... 

Washington .... 
Wayne . . . 


Whitley C.H. .... 
Versailles .... 


Total . 







Louisville . 
Lexington . 
Maysville . 
Frankfurt . 
Covineton . 

. . . 1,357 . 
. . . 4,226 . 
. . . . 335 . 
. . . 1,099 . 

. . . 4,012 . 
. . . 5,279 . 
. . . 1,130 . 
. . . 1,679 . 

. . . 10,352 . 
. . . 6,104 . 
. . . 2.040 . 
. . . 1,680 . 

. . . 21,210 
. . . 6,996 . 
... 2,741 . 
. . . 1,916 . 

. . . 40,000 
. . . 8,000 
. . . 5,000 
. . . 2,500 
. . . 6,000 


The State of Kentucky is situated between 36 degrees 30 minutes, and 39 de- 
grees 10 minutes, north latitude; and between 81 degrees 50 minutes, and 89 
degrees 26 minutes, west longitude and includes all that portion of territory 
which lies south and westward of a line, beginning on the Ohio river, at the 
mouth of the Great Sandy river, and running up the same, and the main and 
north-easterly branch thereof, to the great Laurel ridge or Cumberland mountains ; 
thence south-west along said mountains, to a line of North Carolina. It is boun- 
ded north by Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio'; east by Virginia ; south by Tennessee; 
and west by the Mississippi river and State of Missouri. It is three hundred 
miles in length from east to west, and one hundred and fifty miles in mean 
breadth ; and contains 42,600 square miles, or about twenty-seven millions of 


The face of the country is quite diversified, presenting every variety of surface 
as well as quality of soil. The region around Lexington, including the entire 
counties of Bourbon, Fayette. Woodford, and portions of Franklin, Jessamine, 
Clarke, Montgomery, Bath, Nicholas, Harrison, and Scott, comprises the largest 
body of fine land in Kentucky the surface being agreeably undulating, and the 
soil black and friable, producing the sugar-tree, blue and black ash, black and 
honey locust, elm, hickory, black walnut, mulberry, buckeye, pawpaw, &c. Por- 
tions of the uplands of Boone, Grant, Mason, and Fleming, in the north, and 
Mercer, Madison, Boyle, Lincoln, Garrard, Shelby, Washington, Laurel, Green, 
Nelson, &c., in the middle district, together with a number of counties south of 
Green river, comprise remarkably rich, and doubtless as productive bodies of 
land as that which has been most appropriately termed the garden of Kentucky, 
but more circumscribed in their extent. 

Capt. Imlay, an officer of the Revolutionary army, and an early witness of the 
settlement of Kentucky, caused to be published in 1793, in New York, "a topo- 
graphical description of the western territory of North America," comprised in 
a series of letters to a friend in England. In these letters, the following glowing 
description is given of the country, as it was presented to his view in the spring 
season of the year : 

" Everything here assumes a dignity and splendor I have never seen in any other part of 
the world. You ascend a considerable distance from the shore of the Ohio, and when you 
would suppose you had arrived at the summit of a mountain, you find yourself upon an 
extensive level. Here an eternal verdure reigns, and the brilliant sun of latitude 39, 
piercing through the azure heavens, produces in this prolific soil an early maturity which is 
truly astonishing. 

" Flowers full and perfect, as if they had been cultivated by the hand of a florist, with all 
their captivating odors, and with all the variegated charms which color and nature can pro- 
duce here, in the lap of elegance and beauty, decorate the smiling groves. Soft zephyrs 
gently breathe on sweets, and the inhaled air gives a voluptuous glow of health and vigor, 
that seems to ravish the intoxicated senses. The sweet songsters of the forest appear to feel 
the influence of the genial clime, and in more soft and modulated tones warble their tender 
notes in unison with love and nature. Every thing here gives delight ; and, in that wild 
effulgence which beams around us, we feel a glow of gratitude for the elevation which our 
all bountiful Creator has bestowed upon us. 

" You must forgive what I know you will call a rhapsody, but what I really experienced 
after traveling across the Allegheny mountain in March, when it was covered with snow, and 
after finding the country about Pittsburgh bare, and not recovered from the ravages of the 
winter. There was scarcely a blade of grass to be seen ; every thing looked dreary, and 
bore those marks of melancholy which the rude hand of frost produces. I embarked im- 
mediately for Kentucky, and in less than five days landed at Limestone, where I found na- 
ture robed in all her charms." 


In Filson's " Discovery, Settlement and present state of Kentucky," published 
as a supplement to " Imlay's Description," and written in 1784, the following no 
less glowing description of the country is given : 

"The country is in some parts nearly level; in others not so much so; in others again 
hilly, but moderately and in such places there is most water. The levels are not like a 
carpet, but interspersed with small risings and declivities, which form a beautiful prospect. 
The soil is of a loose, deep, black mould without sand, in the first rate lands about two or 
three feet deep, and exceedingly luxuriant in all its productions. The country in general 
may be considered as well timbered, producing large trees of many kinds, and to be ex- 
ceeded by no country in variety. Those which are peculiar to Kentucky are the sugar tree, 
which grows in all parts, and furnishes every family with great plenty of excellent sugar. 
The honey-locust is curiously surrounded with large thorny spikes, bearing broad and long 
pods in the form of peas, has a sweet taste, and makes excellent beer. The coffee tree 
greatly resembles the black-oak, grows large, and also bears a pod, in which is enclosed 
coffee. The pawpaw tree does not grow to a great size, is a soft wood, bears a fine fruit, 
much like a cucumber in shape and size, and tastes sweet." Of the " fine cane, on which 
the cattle feed and grow fat," he says: "This plant in general grows from three to twelve 
feet high, of a hard substance, with joints at eight or ten inches distance along the stalk, 
from which proceed leaves resembling those of the willow. There are many canebrakes so 
thick and tall, that it is difficult to pass through them. Where no cane grows, there is an 
abundance of wild rye, clover and buffalo grass, covering vast tracts of country, and afford- 
ing excellent food for cattle. The fields are covered with an abundance of wild herbage 
not common to other countries. Here are seen the finest crown-imperial in the world, the 
cardinal flower, so much extolled for its scarlet color, and all the year, excepting the winter 
months, the plains and valleys are adorned with a variety of flowers of the most admirable 
beauty. Here is also found the tulip-bearing laurel tree, or magnolia, which is very fra- 
grant and continues to blossom and seed for several months together. The reader by 
casting his eye upon the map, and viewing round the heads of Licking from the Ohio, and 
round the heads of Kentucky, Dick's river, and down Green river to the Ohio, may view in 
that great compass of above one hundred miles square, the most extraordinary country on 
which the sun has ever shone." 

This is a glowing description of Kentucky AS SHE WAS, robed in primeval beauty. 
The hand of man has been laid upon the forest, and the wild grandeur of nature 
succeeded by the arts of a civilized people. Kentucky AS SHE is, presents at- 
tractions which are found in but few, if any other regions of the world. Situ- 
ated in the very centre of the American confederated states, beyond the reach of 
foreign intrusion she is rich in a genial climate, rich in a prolific soil, rich in 
her agricultural products, rich in her beautiful farms and grazing lands, rich in the 
magnificent scenery and abundant ores of her mountains ; and, above all and be- 
yond all, rich in a population at once industrious, enterprising, hospitable, intel- 
ligent and patriotic. 


The principal rivers of Kentucky, are the Ohio, Mississippi, Tennessee, Cum- 
berland, Kentucky, Green, Licking, Big and Little Sandy, Salt and the Rolling 
Fork of Salt river. The Ohio flows along the whole northern boundary of the 
State for six hundred and thirty-seven miles, following its windings. The Mis- 
sissippi washes the Kentucky shore from the mouth of the Ohio, to a point be- 
low New Madrid, for the distance of one hundred miles. Big and Little Sandy 
rivers lie in the eastern extremity of the State, the former being its eastern boun- 
dary. Cumberland and Tennessee intersect the western extremity ; the former 
rises in the eastern part of the State, and passes into the State of Tennessee, 
after which it returns and flows through Kentucky into the Ohio river. The 
Kentucky, Licking, Salt and Rolling Fork of Salt rivers, flow through the inte- 
rior of the State. The principal creeks are generally mentioned under the head 
of the counties in which they rise, or through which they flow. 


The geological formations of Kentucky, in common with those of the other 
western States generally, belong to that great system which extends from the 
Alleghanies on the east, across the Mississippi, and perhaps to the Rocky moun- 
tains on the west. Throughout this vast territory, the primary fossiliferous or 


protozoic and lower secondary, or carboniferous rocks prevail. These compre- 
hend a great number of distinct formations, very unequally developed in different 
parts of this wide valley, producing a great variety in the mineral and agricul- 
tural wealth and resources of different sections. Almost all these rocks contain 
organic remains, although they are found much more abundantly in some strata 
and localities than in others. We are not, however, to suppose that they are in- 
discriminately dispersed through the whole series. Here, as in every other part 
of the world, each formation is distinguished more or less by peculiar species or 
varieties. There are, however, indubitable proofs that the whole of these strata 
were once covered by the waters of the ocean, and that the remains which are 
found in them, and in many places almost compose them, all belong to marine 

These rocks all belong to the class which are termed sedimentary, and were 
gradually deposited upon the bottom of the ocean. The shells and skeletons 
which they contain, no doubt once belonged to the inhabitants of this ocean, and 
as the animals died and decayed, their harder and more lasting coverings sank to 
the bottom, and were gradually covered up by clay and sand, and other layers of 
shells, until at length under a heavy pressure of superincumbent strata, and by a 
slow and long continued chemical action, they were converted into solid rocks : 
and now that the waters of the ocean have retired, are exposed to our view as 
the lasting records of the earth's history during ages long anterior to our own. 

When these deposites were made, it is beyond the power of science to deter- 
mine. Geologically speaking, it was very early. 

The strata over nearly the whole surface of Kentucky lie nearly horizontal, with 
scarcely any dislocations. They have, however, a slight dip. This dip seems to be 
in every direction from a point near Cincinnati on the Ohio river, as a centre. At 
this point we see the lowest surface rocks of the State exposed. As we go up 
the river, we meet with the other strata in succession, cropping out as it is 
termed, but sinking beneath other rocks as they extend eastward, and rising gen- 
erally again to the surface on the western slope of the Alleghanies. If from 
Cincinnati we travel down the river, we meet with the same succession of rocks, 
but dipping to the west. If from the same point we penetrate into the interior of 
the State, we find the rocks dipping to the south. Cincinnati seems thus to have 
been a centre of elevation when this broad valley was lifted above the waters of 
the ocean. 

But it is necessary to be somewhat more minute in our description of the 
various formations. We will begin with the lowest or oldest, and describe them 
in the order of their superposition. 


The blue limestone is the lowest rock exposed on the surface in Ken- 
tucky. It is, as its name indicates, a limestone. It, however, generally con- 
tains a good deal of clay, and in some places a large amount of magnesia. 
It underlies an immense extent of territory, reaching continuously in all likeli- 
hood, though not every where exposed, from the Alleghanies on the east, 
to at least two hundred miles west of the Mississippi, and probably to the 
foot of the Rocky mountains. Over much the greater part of this territory 
it is covered by superincumbent strata. In Kentucky and Ohio it forms 
the surface rock, over an area extending about one hundred and seventy miles 
north and south, and one hundred and twenty-five miles east and west. It is 
somewhat oval in its shape, and reaches from Danville, near the centre of Ken- 
tucky, across the Ohio river to Dayton, and from the town of Madison in Indi- 
ana, to a short distance above Maysville. This formation is of great though 
unknown thickness, probably not less than one thousand feet, and is composed 
of many strata of limestone alternating with layers of clay. The rock is gen- 
erally found in thin seams, and easily quarried, and well adapted for building 
purposes. In some places, however, it becomes very thick, and massive, and 
where the water courses have cut their channels through it, is left exposed in 
high and perpendicular cliffs. This is very conspicuous on the banks of the 
Kentucky at Frankfort, and for some miles above. Here the river is confined by 
high and perpendicular walls of solid rock. The stream no doubt once flowed 
on the surface level of the country, but for ages has the water been slowly and 

vt* fj 



silently but steadily cutting its way through the hard rock, until the bed of the 
river is now four or five hundred feet beneath the surface of the surrounding 
country. That there was once no natural valley here, but that the channel has 
been formed by the action of the running water itself, we have this proof: The 
layers of rock, on the opposite sides of the river, exactly correspond. Opposite 
to a thick bed you find one of the same thickness and character. So of a thinner 
layer, and of the seams of clay which separate the different beds. Besides this, 
we find near the surface, far above the present level of the bed of the river, in 
many places, manifest marks of the action of water, giving indubitable proof, 
that it once occupied a channel not near so deep as at present. 

It is in these cliffs of the Kentucky river, and in the adjacent country that we find 
what is termed the Kentucky marble. This presents quite a different appearance 
from that of the common limestone, ordinarily. As has been stated, the layers 
are much thicker, the rock is less crystalline, more brittle, breaks with a concoi- 
dal fracture, and is barren of organic remains. It is used as a building stone, 
and is the material of which the State-house in Frankfort is constructed. It is 
susceptible of a good polish, and is sometimes used for tomb stones, and monu- 
ments, though liable to scale when exposed to the action of the weather. It is 
almost too coarse to be suitable for finer ornamental purposes. It is said to con- 
tain a large per cent, of magnesia. 


If we travel up the Ohio river, from Cincinnati, until we get to about the 
dividing line between the counties of Mason and Lewis, we meet with the for- 
mation overlying the blue limestone. If we travel down the river we first meet 
the same formation at Madison, Indiana. It takes its name of "Cliff Lime- 
stone" from the high cliffs which are usually found on the water courses where 
this formation prevails. It differs in its structure, color and general appearance, 
from the blue limestone. It is generally found in thicker layers, and has less 
clay, but more sand in its composition. As a surface rock it covers but a small 
area in Kentucky. It forms a narrow belt entirely surrounding the space occu- 
pied by the underlying rock. At its broadest point in Kentucky, this belt is not 
more than twenty or thirty miles, and entirely disappears in the centre of the 
State. On the east and west it dips under the other strata. On the west it is 
the surface rock, between Madison and Louisville. On the east it occupies a 
somewhat narrower strip of country. But towards the north it spreads out over 
an immense extent of territory, and becomes much thicker. It is the rock over 
which the waters pour at the falls of Niagara, and it is the same rock that causes 
the falls of the Ohio at Louisville. Towards the north-west, in Illinois and Iowa, 
this rock attains a thickness of six or seven hundred feet, and is the great lead- 
bearing rock of those states. In Kentucky it is perhaps too thin ever to furnish 
any rich veins of ore. 


The slate rests upon the cliff limestone, and is seen immediately on crossing 
this formation in traveling either up or down the Ohio from Cincinnati. It has 
a dip exactly corresponding to that of the preceding rock, and like it, occupies a 
narrow semi-circular belt of country lying just outside of the cliff limestone. 
Crossing the Ohio in Lewis county, where it is not more than ten or twelve miles 
broad, and passing in a south-west direction to the centre of the State, a few 
miles south of Danville, it makes a sweep round towards the north-west, and re- 
crosses the Ohio at Louisville. Indeed this slate may be traced on the surface 
from the north-eastern part of Illinois, in a south-east direction, through Illinois, 
Indiana, and to the centre of Kentucky, where it bends to the north, and runs 
through the whole length of Ohio, until it strikes the western end of Lake Erie, 
and thence east along the southern margin of that lake, into the interior of New 
York, where bending south again, it runs along the western slope of the Alle- 
ghanies ; and throughout this vast circuit, is in no place more than fifteen or 
twenty miles broad, on the surface, though it underlies an immense region. In 
the eastern part of the State it is between two and three hundred feet thick. 

The slate is highly bituminous, and burns readily when thrown on the fire. 
Throughout its whole extent, it abounds in iron pyrites (sulphate of iron) and in 


iron ores, and over the whole territory it occupies mineral springs are very nu- 


The slate is everywhere accompanied by an overlying sandstone, or freestone, 
as it is sometimes termed. This sandstone may be traced through that same 
vast extent of territory, in which it has just been mentioned the slate can be fol- 
lowed; and in Kentucky comes to the surface in a narrow semi-circular belt of 
country completely surrounding the slate. It gives rise to a low range of hills 
termed " knobs," which may be traced, from Louisville around south of Danville, 
to the Ohio river again in Lewis county. In some cases this rack, when exposed 
to the weather, becomes soft and crumbles to pieces. But if care be taken to 
select specimens entirely free from clay, it forms a firm and durable material for 
architectural purposes. It is readily cut into any desired shape, and is exten- 
sively used for columns, tombstones and other purposes. But of the finer quali- 
ties great numbers of grindstones are manufactured. Near Portsmouth it is 
about three hundred and fifty feet thick; below Louisville, two hundred and 
eighty; and it seems to grow thinner as it extends towards the west, though it is not 
known to what distance it reaches. It has the same dip with the preceding rocks. 
It underlies the whole of the eastern part of Kentucky, and is the rock which 
furnishes the salt springs in this State and Virginia. 


Immediately above the sandstone we meet with another formation of limestone. 
It is termed the " Cavernous limestone" because in it are found those numerous 
caves, which abound in Kentucky, and of which the Mammoth Cave, is the most 
remarkable yet discovered. The mouth of this cave is in Edmonston county, on 
the banks of Green river. It is said to have been explored to the distance of ten 
miles from its mouth, without having yet reached its termination ; and the ag- 
gregate length of all the branches already discovered, is more than forty miles. 
It is the most remarkable cave known, for its vast extent. Its various branches 
sometimes swell out into vast arches a hundred feet high, and into vaulted rooms 
or domes, some of which are said to be more than three hundred feet from floor 
to roof. In it are several springs of fresh and mineral waters, even a river as it is 
called, but which is more like a pool of water, as scarcely any current can be 
detected, and which is most probably fed by the Green river, as it rises and falls 
with the water in that stream. In this river or pool are found " blind fish," 
without the slightest appearance of eyes. They are not more than four or five 
inches long, but from their snowy whiteness can be seen at considerable depths, 
darting through the transparent water. They are often caught with nets. 

Stalactites and stalagmites abound in some parts of the cave ; and in at least 
one room the roof and sides are covered with the most brilliant incrustations of 
gypsum, (sulphate of lime), which looks like it had been carved by the hand of 
art. But no description can convey any adequate idea of the impression the end- 
less variety in the cave makes upon the beholder. 

But this is only one of a thousand or perhaps ten thousand caves found in this 
rock. Throughout the whole section of country where this formation prevails, 
sink holes, sinking springs, and underground streams are constantly to be met 
with. These sink holes are probably produced by the falling in of the roofs of 
the caves, and the springs and streams pour into them, and often run for great 
distances under ground. 

The rock of this formation is almost a pure limestone, and when burned makes 
most beautiful lime. It is manufactured and sent down the Ohio and Missis- 
sippi rivers, in considerable quantities, for the southern markets. It is generally 
compact, and can be quarried in thick blocks, and forms an excellent building 
material. It is sometimes oolitic in its structure, and in many places is covered 
with fragments of flint or hornstone. 

This cavernous limestone forms the surface rock for a large section, perhaps 
a fourth or fifth of Kentucky. Its boundary may be traced as follows: Begin- 
ning at the Tennessee line near Thompsonville in Monroe county, and proceed- 
ing in a north-east direction to Mt. Vernon ; thence westward, to the head waters 
of the southern branch of Rolling Fork, and thence along this stream to where it 
empties into the Ohio, we mark its eastern limits. It occupies all the State west 


of this boundary, except the portion occupied by the lower coal field, which will 
be described, and which rests upon this rock. The dip of this rock is towards 
the south and west in Kentucky. It thins out towards the east, but becomes 
thicker towards the west, and attains a great thickness in Missouri and Illinois. 
In Kentucky the country underlaid by this rock, is termed the " Barrens." The 
name is probably not derived from the poverty of the soil, for this is of a medium 
quality, and sometimes very good ; but from the scarcity of the timber. The 
barrens are said to have been once a vast prairie, and are now covered by 
scarcely any timber except a small scrubby oak, termed black-jack. It is im- 
possible to assign the cause of this peculiar feature of this remarkable region. 


Resting on the cavernous limestone we find a conglomerate or pudding stone. 
It is composed of coarse pebbles of quartz, and fine grains of sand, rounded and 
cemented together by a silicious cement. It underlies the coal series in both the 
eastern and western fields in Kentucky, and is generally regarded as a member 
of the coal formation. It forms a kind of basin or trough in which the coal 
beds were deposited, and comes to the surface in a border completely surround- 
ing the coal fields. In Kentucky it is found in two narrow strips, in one ex- 
tending from the Ohio river in Greenup county, in a south-west direction to 
where the Cumberland river crosses the Tennessee line; in the other, forming a 
margin to the lower coal field extending from the Ohio in the western part of 
Meade county, south and west until it nearly reaches the southern limits of the 
State, at a point near the dividing line between the counties of Todd and Chris- 
tian, and thence bending to the north-west, recrosses the Ohio in Crittenden 
county. The rock is very firm, and is sometimes used for millstones to grind 
Indian corn. It varies in thickness from eighty to two or three hundred feet, 
though perhaps no where so thick as this in Kentucky. 

The. Coal series. Immediately over the conglomerate we find what may be more 
properly termed the coal formation. The whole series is made up of various 
combinations of layers of shale and sandstone, with thinner strata of limestone, 
hornstone and iron ore alternating with coal beds. 

In Kentucky there are two distinct and separate coal fields. The one in the 
eastern part of the State, termed the coal field of the upper Ohio, includes the 
whole of that section of the State, which lies to the east of a line beginning on 
the Ohio river, at Greenupsburg, and running in a south-west direction by Irvine 
on the Kentucky, Somerset, the county seat of Pulaski, and Jamestown, to the 
Tennessee line. This is a part of the great coal field, the largest in the world, 
occupying a very large district in western Pennsylvania and Virginia, a portion of 
Ohio, and the eastern part of Kentucky, and extending down into Tennessee, 
and probably into Alabama. 

The other coal field is in the Green river country, and is a part of the great 
field covering a large portion of Illinois, considerable sections in Kentucky and 
Indiana, and even extending into Missouri and Iowa. Mr. Mather, who, under the 
direction of the Legislature, made a geological reconnoisance of Kentucky, in 
1838, in his report says: "The boundary of the lower Ohio coal formation may 
be indicated, by an irregular line drawn from near the mouth of the Wabash, so 
as to include Henderson, Davies, Hancock, Ohio, and most of Union, Hopkins, 
Muhlenburg, Butler, Edmonston, Grayson, and a small portion of Breckinridge. 
Hart, and Warren counties." 

In both fields the strata dip from the border towards the center, and the rocks 
which we observe passing under the coal formation as we ascend the Ohio, come 
again to the surface before we reach the Alleghanies, forming a kind of basin or 
trough, in which the coal has been deposited. 

In Kentucky the coal fields are supposed to cover ten or twelve thousand 
square miles, and but a small part of each field is included within the limits of 
this State. In England, the largest coal field does not embrace more than twelve 
hundred square miles, or the one-tenth of the coal district of Kentucky. In many 
places several workable beds of coal are found. But as yet, mining operations 
have been carried on only to a very limited extent, and generally a seam is 
opened where the coal is found cropping out on a hill side, and only the most ac- 
cessible coal procured. The nearly horizontal position of the beds in Kentucky, 


the dip being just sufficient for drainage, if the vein is opened on the right side of 
a hill, renders the operation of mining very easy. There are several varieties of 
coal, but all of them bituminous. Mr. Mather in his report mentions three kinds. 

" 1st. The common bituminous or caking coal. 

" 2nd. A similar coal which does not cake, and adhere in lumps when burning, but each 
piece keeps separate and distinct. 

"3d. coal." 

He adds " AH these coals burn well and give out much heat ; but the two latter are far 
more pleasant for domestic use, and do not emit that kind of smoke from which flakes of 
soot, like lampblack, are diffused through the air." 

The coal of Kentucky is very accessible. The Cumberland, the Licking, the 
Kentucky, and the two Sandies, penetrate almost every part of the eastern field, 
and Green river runs right through the center of the western ; and upon the bosom 
of these streams is a large amount of coal annually carried to the towns on their 
banks. The amount annually raised from all the mines in Kentucky, cannot be 
accurately stated. Mr. Mather states it at three millions of bushels. 


IRON. There are several varieties of iron ore found in Kentucky. In several 
localities the bog ore is found as a deposit from mineral springs. But this is 
comparatively unimportant. In addition to this, however, there is 

1st. The ore of the coal measures. This ore is found in layers, or else in 
courses of nodules, in the shales or sandstones of the coal fields, and is generally 
an hydrated peroxide of iron. When found in layers, it is readily broken into 
rectangular blocks ; otherwise it is taken from the mine in round lumps of various 

3d. The ore found in connection with the limestone underlying the coal meas- 
ures. This ore is very abundant, and is extensively worked for furnaces. 

3d. The ore of the slate formation. This ore too, is very abundant, and is found, 
either in continuous strata, or in layers of nodules in the slate (formation three). 
It seems to be a calcareous and argillaceous carbonate of iron. In many places 
where the slate has been crumbled to pieces, and been washed away, it is found 
abundantly on the surface. All the above ores are worked more or less exten- 
sively for the furnaces in various sections of the State. 

" In the coal fields of eastern and western Kentucky, there appears to be an almost inex- 
haustible supply of iron. Over an area of twelve thousand square miles, there may be 
probably an average thickness of one yard of iron ore in the coal formation alone, without 
counting the slate and limestone regions, where there is probably as much more. Each 
cubic yard of this ore will yield on an average one ton of bar iron, or five thousand tons to 
the acre, or 3,200,000 tons to the square mile, or 38,400,000,000 on the twelve thousand 
square miles ; a quantity sufficient to supply a ton of iron annually to every individual in 
the United States (estimating our population at fifteen million of people) for 2,560 years." 

It will be remembered that as much more is supposed to belong to the lime- 
stone and slate formation. 

Like the coal, the iron in every part of Kentucky is very accessible. It is 
spread over a wide district, penetrated in every direction by navigable streams, 
and everywhere accompanied by the fuel necessary for its reduction. As yet the 
mining business may be said hardly to have commenced, but it is destined to be 
the source of great future wealth to the State. 


In a variety of localities, veins of lead ore have been found in the blue lime- 
stone (formation one), but no where yet in such abundance as to justify mining 
operations. The cliff limestone (No. two), and the cavernous limestone (No. five), 
especially the former, seem to be the great lead-bearing rocks of our country, and 
neither of them appear to be sufficiently developed in Kentucky, to furnish any 
rich veins of this metal. It is more than probable, that as long as there is such 
an inexhaustible supply of lead from the mines further west, it will never be 
worked in Kentucky. 


It has already been mentioned that the sandstone (formation fourth"), which over- 


lies the slate, seems to furnish the salt springs of this State and Virginia, and 
perhaps of Ohio and New York. This rock underlies the coal measures, form- 
ing a kind of basin in which they were deposited, and over the whole area salt 
water may be reached by boring to this rock. The water is generally stronger 
near the center of the basin, as for example in the eastern part of Kentucky, and 
western part of Virginia, though it is sometimes necessary to bore to the depth 
of a thousand feet, before the salt-bearing stratum can be reached. 

The amount of salt annually manufactured at the various salines of the State, 
may be estimated from 500,000 to 1,000,000 of bushels. 


Saltpeter is found in most of the caves, which are so numerous in the cavern- 
ous limestone. It exists in the caves as a nitrate of lime, and is converted into 
saltpeter (nitrate of potassa), by leaching through wood ashes. It is not largely 

Gypsum or plaster of Paris and hydraulic limestone, are found in several 
places. It has already been mentioned that Gypsum forms a complete coating or 
incrustation, over the walls in some branches of the Mammoth Cave. The hy- 
draulic limestone is in some places found imbedded in the slate, and doubtless a 
more accurate survey of the State, will serve to discover both these materials in 
many localities where they are not now imagined to exist. 


Mineral and medicinal springs abound in Kentucky, especially in those sec- 
tions adjacent to and underlaid by the slate. The gradual decomposition of the 
sulphuret of iron in this rock, probably affords the sulphuretic hydrogen of the 
sulphur waters, and sulphuric acid, which combining with oxide of iron, soda, 
magnesia, etc., form the various salts held in solution by these waters. 

Sulphur, chalybeate and Epsom springs, are all very common, and in the 
watering seasons are much resorted to by invalids. 

At the Blue Licks, near the bank of the Licking river, is a sulphur spring con- 
taining besides a variety of other ingredients a large amount of common salt, 
whose waters are highly prized and much used for medicinal purposes. It is an- 
nually resorted to by hundreds, for pleasure or health ; and large quantities of 
the water is barreled and sent off through the country, where it meets a ready 
market. It rises in the blue limestone, though it probably has its origin in the 

This, however, is not the only instance of a mineral spring in this formation. 
At Drennon's Lick, at Big Bone Lick, and in a number of other places in the blue 
limestone, water is found which is said not to be very dissimilar to that of the 
Blue Licks. 

At Harrodsburg, near the center of the State, are numbers of springs whose 
predominate ingredient seems to be sulphate of magnesia or Epsom salt. And 
near Crab Orchard, thirty miles from this place, are several more springs of the 
same kind, together with sulphur and chalybeate waters. Both of these places 
are much visited in the watering season. But besides these, a great variety of 
valuable waters are known ; as for example, the springs in Rockcastle, Estill, 
Bath and Lewis counties. 


Organic remains abound more or less in all the strata of the state. Sufficiently 
minute examinations have not, however, been made to ascertain the number and 
variety of species belonging to the different formations. In the lower rocks (for- 
mations one and two), fossil remains are exceedingly abundant. The blue lime- 
stone in many places seems to be almost entirely composed of the shells of ma- 
rine animals. "Among the most common are delthyris, atrypa, orthis, stopho- 
mena, trilobites, orthocerotites, corallines, cyathophylla, encrinites and a number 
of other radiata." 

In formation two, fossils are perhaps not so numerous, but larger and more dis- 
tinct than in the preceding rock. Many genera are common to both, though 
generally shells prevail most in formation one, and radiata in two. The penta- 
merus, trilobites, cyathophylla, catenipora, retepora, lithodendron, etc., are very 
abundant in this rock. 


Formations third and fourth, the slate and sandstone are barren of organic re- 

Formation fifth is a limestone, and is much richer in fossils. In some places 
miscroscopic shells are exceedingly abundant. 

In the conglomerate, which underlies the coal beds, only a few traces of fossil 
plants can be discovered. The coal itself is now generally understood to be of 
vegetable orgin, and the impressions of plants are always more or less distinctly 
traceable in all the varieties of it. 

But besides these remains disseminated so profusely through some of these 
rocks, there are others of a very different epoch, and in some respects of a 
much more interesting character. These are the bones of extinct quadrupeds. 

In many places on the surface of the rocks already described, and as appears 
of a much more recent date, there has been deposited, a deep marshy soil, occu- 
pying the natural valleys of the country. In these marshy grounds, and especially 
in the neighborhood of " Licks," to which the animals seem to have been at- 
tracted, are often found the bones of several species of extraordinary but now ex- 
tinct quadrupeds. The most remarkable locality is in Boone county, at Big 
Bone Lick. Here a large number of bones, perfectly sound and well preserved, 
have been dug up. And while perhaps in no case has a complete skeleton been 
found, yet it has been computed that to furnish the specimens carried off from 
this place alone, there would be required of the 

Mastodon maximus, - 100 individuals. 
Elephas primigenius, 20 
Megalonyx Jeffersonia, 1 " 
Bos bombifrous, - 2 " 

Bos pallasii, 1 " 

Some of these animals, especially the mastodon, must have been of extraordi- 
nary size, and while there can be no doubt that they are now extinct, there can 
be as little, that geologically speaking, they were very recently tenants of the 
earth. The nearly complete skeleton of a mastodon found in the State of New 
York, and put up by Mr. Peale in the museum in Philadelphia, measures fifteen 
feet in length, and is nearly eleven feet high. This animal must once have 
roamed through this whole country, as its remains are found in many States, and 
many localities. How long since it became extinct, or why it perished, is un- 
known to us. 


Perhaps it may be proper to add a few words in regard to the connection 
between the geology and soils of different sections of the State. It is well known 
that the soil takes its character from the underlaying rock ; that it is formed by 
its decomposition, and varies with it. In Kentucky, the blue limestone, or forma- 
tion one, forms the richest soil. That beautiful section of country, the garden 
of the State embracing Fayette, Bourbon, Woodford, Scott, Jessamine, and the 
counties between them and the Ohio river, is underlaid by this rock. The soil 
over this section is not everywhere equally fertile, but altogether is the best in 
the State. 

Formation second and formation fifth are both limestone, and form good soils. 
The former is, as has already been mentioned, developed only to a very limited 
extent in this State. The latter covers a much larger territory. The " Barrens" 
are underlaid by it. The soil is good, and in some places of an excellent quality. 

The slate and sandstone generally form poor soils. In some places, however, 
a proper mixture of limestone with the clay of the slate, forms an excellent soil. 
The soil over the coal measures is generally poor, though it varies much in its 


The plan of this work would be incomplete, if it did not contain some account 
of the spirit and manners of society in the primitive ages of Kentucky history. 
The following sketch of early life is drawn from various sources; but we are 
principally indebted to " Doddridge's Notes." 

The household offices were performed by the women ; the men cultivated the 
soil, hunted the game and brought in the meat, built the houses, garrisoned the 


forts, and freely exposed themselves to danger and privations in defence of the 

Most of the articles in common use were of domestic manufacture. There 
might have been incidentally a few things brought to the country for sale in a 
private way, but there was no store for general supply. Utensils of metal, ex- 
cept offensive weapons, were extremely rare, and almost entirely unknown. The 
table furniture usually consisted of wooden vessels, either turned or coopered. 
Iron forks, tin cups, &c., &c., were articles of rare and delicate luxury. The 
food was of the most wholesome and nutritive kind. The richest meat, the finest 
butter, and best meal that ever delighted man's palate, were here eaten with a 
relish which health and labor only know. The hospitality of the people was 
profuse and proverbial. 

The dress of the settlers was of primitive simplicity. The hunting shirt was 
worn universally. Many of these garments are still in use in the back settle- 
ments, and their appearance is familiar to almost every reader in the west. This 
backwoods costume was peculiarly adapted to the pursuits and habits of the peo- 
ple, and has been connected with so many thrilling passages of war and wild 
adventure, that the Kentucky hunting shirt is famous throughout the world. The 
hunting shirt was usually made of linsey, sometimes of coarse linen, and a few 
of dressed deer skins. The bosom of this dress was sewed as a wallet, to hold a 
piece of bread, cakes, jerk, tow for wiping the barrel of the rifle, and any other 
necessary for the hunter or warrior. The belt, which was always tied behind, 
answered several purposes besides that of holding the dress together. In cold 
weather, the mittens, and sometimes the bullet bag occupied the front part of it. 
To the right side was suspended the tomahawk, and to the left the scalping knife 
in its leathern sheath. The shirt and jacket were of the common fashion. A 
pair of drawers, or breeches and leggins were the dress of the thighs and legs, 
and a pair of moccasins answered for the feet much better than shoes. These 
were made of dressed deer skin. They were generally made of a single piece, 
with a gathering seam along the top of the foot, and another from the bottom of the 
heel, without gathers, as high as the ankle joint. Flaps were left on each side 
to reach some distance up the leg. Hats were made of the native fur ; the buf- 
falo wool was frequently employed in the composition of cloth, as was also the 
bark of the wild nettle. 

The forts in which the inhabitants took refuge from the fury of the savages, 
consisted of cabins, block houses, and stockades. A range of the former com- 
monly formed at least one side of the fort. Divisions or partitions of logs sepa- 
rated the cabins from each other. The walls on the outside were ten or twelve 
feet high, the slope of the roof being invariably inward. A few of these cabins 
had puncheon floors, but the greater part were earthen. 

The block houses were built at the angles of the fort. They projected about 
two feet beyond the outer walls of the cabins and stockades. Their upper stories 
were about eighteen inches every way larger in dimensions than the under one, 
leaving an opening at the commencement of the second story to prevent the 
enemy from making a lodgment under their walls. A large folding gate made of 
thick slabs closed the fort on the side nearest the spring. The stockades, cabins, 
and blockhouse walls were furnished with ports at proper heights and distances. 
The entire extent of the outer wall was made bullet proof. The whole of this 
work was made without the aid of a single nail or spike of iron, which articles 
were not to be had. 

The inhabitants generally married young. There was no distinction of rank, 
and very little of fortune. The first impression of love generally resulted in 
marriage, and a family establishment cost but a little labor and nothing else. 

A Kentucky wedding in early times was a very picturesque affair, and was an 
event which excited the general attention of the whole community in which it 
occurred. The following description of the proceedings had on these interesting 
occasions, is taken almost verbatim from the account of one who had been pres- 
ent at many of these joyful assemblies : 

In the morning of the wedding day, the groom and his attendants assembled 
at the house of his father, for the purpose of proceeding to the mansion of his 
bride, which it was desirable to reach by noon, the usual time of celebrating the 
nuptials, which ceremony must at all events take place before dinner. Let the 


reader imagine an assemblage of people, without a store, tailor, or mantua maker 
within an hundred miles ; an assemblage of horses, without a blacksmith or sad- 
dler within a like distance. The gentlemen dressed in shoe packs, moccasins, 
leather breeches, leggins, linsey hunting shirts, and all home made. The ladies 
in linsey petticoats and linsey or linen bedgowns, coarse shoes, stockings, hand- 
kerchiefs, and buckskin gloves. If there were any buckles, rings, buttons, or 
ruffles, they were relics of old times. The horses were caparisoned with old sad- 
dles, old bridles or halters, and pack saddles, with a bag or blanket thrown over 
them ; a rope or string as often constituted the girth as a piece of leather. 

The march, in double file, was often interrupted by the narrowness or obstruc- 
tions of the horse path, for roads there were none; and these difficulties were 
often increased by the jocularity, and sometimes by the malice of neighbors, by 
felling trees and tying grape vines across the way. Sometimes an ambuscade was 
formed by the way side, and an unexpected discharge of several guns took place, 
so as to cover the wedding company with smoke. Let the reader imagine the 
scene which followed this discharge : the sudden spring of the horses, the shrieks 
of the girls, and the chivalric bustle of their partners to save them from falling. 
Sometimes, in spite of all that could be done to prevent it, some were thrown to 
the ground. If a wrist, elbow, or ancle happened to be sprained, it was tied 
with a handkerchief, and little more was thought or said about it. 

Another ceremony took place before the party reached the house of the bride, 
after whisky was introduced, which was at an early period. When the party 
had arrived within a mile of the house, two young men would single out to run 
for the bottle. The worse the path the better, as obstacles afforded an opportunity 
for the greater display of intrepidity and horsemanship. The start was announced 
by an Indian yell ; logs, brush, muddy hollows, hills, and glens were speedily 
passed by the rival ponies. The bottle was always filled for the occasion, and 
the first who reached the door was presented with the prize, with which he re- 
turned in triumph to the company. The contents of the bottle were distributed 
among the company. 

The ceremony of the marriage preceded the dinner, which was a substantial 
backwoods feast of beef, pork, fowls, and sometimes venison and bear meat roas- 
ted and boiled, with plenty of potatoes, cabbage, and other vegetables. After din- 
ner the dancing commenced, and generally lasted till next morning. The figures 
of the dances were three and four handed reels, or square sets and jigs. 

About nine or ten o'clock, a deputation of young ladies stole off the bride and 
put her to bed. This done, a deputation of young men in like manner stole off 
the groom and placed him snugly by the side of his bride. The dance still con- 
tinued, and if seats happened to be scarce, every young man when not engaged 
in the dance, was obliged to offer his lap as a seat for one of the girls, and the 
offer was sure to be accepted. In the midst of this hilarity, the bride and groom 
were not forgotten. Pretty late in the night, some one would remind the com- 
pany that the new couple must stand in need of some refreshments ; ' black betty,' 
which was the name of the bottle, was called for and sent up stairs, but often 
4 black betty' did not go alone. Sometimes as much bread, beef, pork and cab- 
bage was sent along with her, as would afford a good meal for half a dozen hun- 
gry men. The young couple were compelled to eat and drink more or less of 
whatever was offered them. 

The marriage being over, the next thing in order was to " settle " the young 
couple. A spot was selected on a piece of land of one of the parents for their 
habitation. A day was appointed shortly after their marriage, for commencing 
the work of building the cabin. The fatigue party consisted of choppers, whose 
business it was to fell the trees and cut them off at the proper length. A man 
with a team for hauling them to the place, and arranging them properly assorted 
at the sides and ends of the building, a carpenter if such he might be called, 
whose business it was to search the woods for a proper tree for making clapboards 
for the roof. The tree for this purpose must be straight grained and from three 
to four feet in diameter, The boards were split four feet long with a large froe, 
and as wide as the timber would allow. They were used without planing or 
shaving. Another division were employed in getting puncheons for the floor of 
the cabin ; this was done by splitting trees about eighteen inches in diameter, 
and hewing the face of them with a broadaxe. They were half the length of 


the floor they were intended to make. The materials being prepared, the neigh- 
bors collected for the raising. The roof and sometimes the floor were finished on 
the same day the house was raised. A third day was commonly spent by the 
carpenters in leveling off the floor and making a clapboard door and table. This 
last was made of a split slab and supported by four round legs set in auger holes. 
Some three legged stools were made in the same manner. Pins stuck in the 
logs at the back of the house supported clapboards which served as shelves for 
the table furniture. A single fork placed with its lower end in a hole in the floor 
and the upper end fastened to a joist, served for a bedstead, by placing a pole in 
the fork with one end through a crack in the logs of the wall. This front pole 
was crossed by a shorter one within the fork, with its outer end through another 
crack. From the front pole through a crack between the logs of the end of the 
house, the boards were placed which formed the bottom of the bed. A few pegs 
around the wall for a display of the coats of the women and the hunting shirts 
of the men, and two small forks or bucks' horns to a joist for the rifle and shot 
pouch, completed the carpenter's work. 

The cabin being finished, the ceremony of house warming took place before 
the young people were permitted to move into it. This was a dance of a whole 
night's continuance, made up of the relations of the bride and groom and their 
neighbors. On the day following the young people took possession of their new 

At house raisings, log rollings, and harvest parties, every one was expected to 
do his duty faithfully. A person who did not perform his share of labor on these 
occasions, was designated by the epithet of " Lawrence," or some other title 
still more opprobrious ; and when it came to his turn to require the like aid from 
his neighbors, the idler soon felt his punishment in their refusal to attend to his 

Although there was no legal compulsion to the performance of military duty, 
yet every man of full age and size was expected to do his full share of public 
service. If he did not, " He was hated out as a coward." Thefts were severely 

With all their rudeness, these people were hospitable, and freely divided their 
rough fare with a neighbor or stranger, and would have been offended at the offer 
of pay. In their settlements and forts they lived, they worked, they fought and 
feasted or suffered together in cordial harmony. They were warm and constant 
in their friendships ; but bitter and revengeful in their resentments. Instances 
of seduction and bastardy did not frequently happen. Indeed, considering the 
chivalrous temper of the people, the former could not take place without great 
personal danger from the brothers or relations of the victim of seduction, family 
honor being then estimated at a high rate. There was no other vestige of the 
Christian religion than a faint observation of Sunday, and that merely as a day 
of rest for the aged and a play day for the young. 


ADAIR was formed in the year 1801. It is situated in the south 
middle part of the state, and lies on the waters of Russell's creek 
and Little Barren river, which flow into Green river : Is bounded 
on the north by Green county ; east, by Casey and Russell ; south, 
by Cumberland ; and west, by Barren. Contains 209,551 acres of 
land ; average value per acre, $2,54. Total value of taxable 
property in the county, in 1846, $1,228,776; number of voters, 
1408; number of children between five and sixteen years, 1844; 
total population in 1830, 8,220 in 1840, 8,466. 

COLUMBIA is the county seat of Adair. It is a handsome and 
thriving town, distant about 150 miles from Frankfort, and 620 


from Washington city ; contains the usual public buildings for 
county purposes; two churches, occupied by four denominations ; 
two schools, seven stores and groceries, five doctors, seven law- 
yers, one tavern, six mechanical shops; population, 500. 

NEATSVILLE, a small village in this county, contains a population 
of about 50. 

BREEDINGS, another village, contains a population of 20. 

Principal articles of export of Adair : tobacco, hogs, horses 
and cattle. Face of the country, hilly ; soil, second rate, based 
principally on slate and limestone. Green river runs through the 
northern portion of the county. Principal tributaries on the 
north, White-oak and Case's creeks ; on the south, Russell's creek 
and its tributaries. The east fork of Little Barren river passes 
through the west end of the county. 

General JOHN ADAIR, in honor of whom this county received its name, was 
born in South Carolina, in the year 1757. His character was formed in the trying 
times and amidst the thrilling incidents of the Revolution. At an early age, he 
entered the army as a volunteer, was made prisoner by the British, and as usual, 
treated with savage cruelty, having been thrown into prison and subjected to every 
species of insult and hardship that the ingenuity of his captors could devise. 

In 1786 he emigrated to Kentucky, and settled in Mercer county. In the border 
war which raged with so much fury on the north-western frontier, General (then 
Major,) Adair was an active and efficient officer, and frequently engaged with the 
Indians. One incident of this nature merits a relation. On the sixth of Novem- 
ber 1792, Major Adair, at the head of a detachment of mounted volunteers, from 
Kentucky, while encamped in the immediate vicinity of Fort St. Clair, twenty- 
six miles south of Greenville, near where Eaton, the county seat of Preble county, 
Ohio, now stands, was suddenly and violently attacked by a large party of In- 
dians, who rushed on the encampment with great fury. A bloody conflict ensued, 
during which Major Adair ordered Lieutenant Madison, with a small party to gain 
the right flank of the enemy, if possible, and at the same time gave an order for 
Lieutenant Hall to attack their left, but learning that that officer had been slain, 
the Major with about twenty -five of his men made the attack in person, with a 
view of sustaining Lieutenant Madison. 

The pressure of this movement caused the enemy to retire. They were driven 
about six hundred yards, through and beyond the American camp, where they 
made a stand, and again fought desperately. At this juncture about sixty of the 
Indians made an effort to turn the right flank of the whites. Major Adair fore- 
seeing the consequences of this manoeuvre, found it necessary to order a retreat. 
That movement was effected with regularity, and as was expected, the Indians 
pursued them to their camp, where a halt was made, and another severe battle 
was fought, in which the Indians suffered severely, and were driven from the 
ground. In this affair six of the whites were killed, five wounded, and four miss- 
ing. Among the wounded were Lieutenant (afterwards Governor) George Mad- 
ison, and Colonel Richard Taylor, the father of the present Major General 
Zachary Taylor, the hero of Palo Alto, Monterey. Buena Vista, &c. 

The Indians on this occasion, were commanded by the celebrated Little Turtle. 
Some years afterwards, in 1805-6, when General Adair was Register of the land" 
office in Frankfort, Captain William Wells, Indian agent, passed through that 
place, on his way to Washington city, attended by some Indians, among whom 
was the chief, Little Turtle. General Adair called on his old antagonist, and in 
the course of the conversation, the incident above related, being alluded to, Gen. 
Adair attributed his defeat to his having been taken by surprise. The little Turtle 
immediately remarked with great pleasantness, "a good general is never taken 
by surprise." 

In 1807, Major Adair's popularity underwent a temporary obscuration from his 
supposed connection with the treasonable enterprise of Burr. His conduct and 
opinions became the subject of much speculation, and the public got to regard 


him with an eye of some suspicion. But it is now generally believed that Gen- 
eral Adair's course in that affair was predicated upon an opinion that Colonel 
Burr's plans were approved by the government, which at that time contemplated 
a war with Spain. General Adair's opinions and associations at that day, pla- 
ced him with the federal party, among whom he stood deservedly high. 

In the campaign of 1813 he accompanied Governor Shelby into Canada, as an 
aid, and was present in that capacity at the battle of the Thames. His conduct 
during this campaign was such as to draw from his superior officers an expres- 
sion of their approbation, and his name was honorably mentioned in the report 
to the war department. Governor Shelby afterwards conferred upon him the 
appointment of adjutant general of the Kentucky troops, with the brevet rank 
of brigadier general, in which character he commanded the Kentuckians in the 
glorious battle of New Orleans. The acrimonious controversy between him and 
General Jackson, growing out of the imputations cast by the latter on the con- 
duct of the Kentucky troops on that eventful day, is fresh in the recollection 
of all. 

In 1820, he was elected governor of Kentucky, in opposition to Judge Logan, 
Governor Desha, and Colonel Butler. He was often a member of the State 
legislature, and on several occasions was speaker of that body. In 1805 he was 
elected to the senate of the United States, from Kentucky, for the term of one 
year. In 1831 he was elected to congress, and served in the house of represen- 
tatives from 1831 to 1833, inclusive. 

General Adair, in all the situations, military and civil, to which he was eleva- 
ted by his countrymen, discharged his duties in such a manner as to command 
the respect and confidence of his fellow citizens. He was a brave soldier, an 
active, vigilant and efficient officer a politician of sound principles and enlarged 
views, and an ardent patriot. Among the early pioneers of Kentucky, he deser- 
vedly occupies a prominent place and a high rank. He died on the 19th of 
May, 1840, at the advanced age of 83 years. 


ALLEN county was formed in the year 1815, and named in 
honor of Colonel JOHN ALLEN. It is situated in the southern part 
of the State, and lies on the waters of Big Barren river: Bounded 
on the north by Warren; east by Barren and Monroe; south by 
the Tennessee line, and west by Simpson county. Scottsville, 
the county seat, is about one hundred miles from Frankfort. 

Statistics. The Auditor's report for 1846, gives to this county 
177,242 acres of land; average value of land per acre, $2,84; 
total valuation of taxable property, $1,200,645. Number of 
voters 1,272; number of children between five and sixteen years 
old, 2,047. Population in 1830, 6,486; in 1840,7,329 increase 
in ten years, eight hundred and forty-three. 

Towns. There are two towns in Allen Scottsville, the county 
seat, and Port Oliver. SCOTTSVILLE contains the court house and 
the usual public buildings, four churches, four stores, three taverns, 
five lawyers, three doctors, eight mechanical trades. Established 
in 1817, and called for General Winfield Scott, of the United 
States' army. PORT OLIVER is situated ten miles from Scottsville, 
on Barren river, and contains one store and tavern. Salt works 
are in operation in the latter place, which manufacture three 
hundred bushels of salt per week. 


Inscripti&ns. On the Sulphur fork of Bay's fork of Big Barren 
river, at or near the Sulphur Lick, the following words were 
found cut in the bark of a beech tree " James M'Call dined here 
on his way to Natchez, June the 10th, 1770." On Barren river, 
about nine miles from Scottsville, on the lands of Colonel S. E. 
Carpenter, near where his mill now stands, the following is in- 
scribed on a large beech tree "Ichabod Clark, mitt site, 1779." 
On the other side of the tree, this inscription is found "Too sick 
to get over," date and name not mentioned. 

Caves. There are a number of caves in the county, but few of 
them have been explored to any extent. In the year 1844, two 
shells were found in one of these caves, resembling a conch shell. 
One of these shells is about eighteen inches long, has been 
sawed or cut lengthwise in the middle, having a small hole bored 
in the little end, so as to be hung up by a string; the other or 
bowl end, answering a good purpose for a water vessel. 

Antiquities. In the west end of the county, about thirteen 
miles from Scottsville, and seventeen from Bowling-green, is one 
of the most remarkable of the remains of those ancient fortifi- 
cations, belonging to a people unknown, of whom our country 
exhibits so many traces. The fortification alluded to is at once 
romantic and impregnable, presenting one of the strongest mili- 
tary positions in the world. At this place, Drake's creek makes 
a horse-shoe bend running one mile, and then with a gradual 
bend, returning to within thirty feet of the channel where the 
bend may be said to commence. The partition which divides 
the channels of the creek at this point, is of solid limestone, 
thirty feet thick at the base, two hundred yards in length, forty 
feet high, and six feet wide at the top. The top is almost per- 
fectly level, and covered with small cedar trees. The area in- 
cluded within the bend of the creek, is to the east of this narrow 
pass, and contains about two hundred acres of land, rising from 
the creek in a gradual ascent of one hundred feet, where it forms 
a bold promontory. The top of this is leveled and forms a 
square area containing about three acres, enclosed with walla 
and a ditch. The outer ditch is still perceptible, and the walls 
are now about three feet high around the whole circuit of the 
fort. In the rear of this, are to be seen many small mounds. 
This is by nature one of the strongest military positions in the 
world; the only approach to the fort, being over the narrow 
cause-way above mentioned tall cliffs intercepting all access 
from the opposite banks of the stream. 

At the west side of the narrow pass, and immediately at its 
termination, there is a hill similar to the one on the east. Here 
is to be seen a small mound forty feet in circumference and four 
feet high. Upon excavating one side of this mound, a stone 
coffin was dug up two and a half feet long, one foot wide and 
one foot deep, with a stone covering the top of the coffin pro- 
jecting one inch beyond the sides. Upon opening the coffin, the 
arm and thigh bones of an infant were found in it. This coffin 


being removed, others of larger dimensions were to be disco- 
vered, but were not removed. Many very large human bones 
have been exhumed from mounds in this county some of the 
thigh bones measuring from eight to ten inches longer than the 
race of men now inhabiting the country. 

This county received its name from Col. JOHN ALLEN, who fell in the disas- 
trous battle of the river Raisin. He was born in Rockbridge county, Virginia, the 
30th of December, 1772. His father, James Allen, emigrated to Kentucky in 
the fall of the year 1780, and settled at Dougherty's station, on Clarke run, 
about one and a half miles below the present town of Danville. Here he formed 
an acquaintance with Joseph Daviess, the father of Col. Joseph Hamilton Da- 
viess. Becoming impatient of the close confinement of the station, these fearless 
and ardent men removed farther down the creek, and erecting a small station, 
lived there for three years. At the expiration of this period, Mr. Daviess pur- 
chased a tract of land three or four miles west of Danville, and removed to it. 

In 1784, the father of John Allen removed to Nelson county, and settled on 
Simpson's creek, seven and a half miles from Bardstown. In 1786, the subject 
of this notice attended a school in Bardstown, kept by a Mr. Shackleford, where 
he acquired a slight knowledge of the classics. This school was succeeded by 
one under the charge of Dr. James Priestly, with whom young Allen finished his 
education. At this school, Joseph H. Daviess, John Rowan, Felix Grundy, 
Archibald Cameron, John Pope, and John Allen, all distinguished in after life, 
formed one class. 

In the year 1791, John Allen commenced the study of the law in the office of 
Col. Archibald Stewart, of Stanton, Va. He pursued his legal studies with great 
assiduity for about four years, and in 1795, he returned to Kentucky and settled 
in Shelby ville, where he continued to practice law till 1812. As a lawyer, he 
ranked with the first men of his profession. 

On the breaking out of the war in 1812, he raised a regiment of riflemen, for 
the campaign under Harrison in the north-west. Part of this regiment was in 
the battle of Brownstown, on the 18th of January, 1813. In the fatal battle of 
the river Raisin, Col. Allen's regiment formed the left wing of the American 
force. The termination of this affair is too well known to require recapitulation 
here ; and among the many noble and chivalrous Kentuckians who there found a 
bloody grave, there was none whose loss was more sensibly felt or deeply de- 
plored than Col. Allen. Inflexibly just, benevolent in all his feelings, and of 
undaunted courage, he was a fine specimen of the Kentucky gentleman of that 
day, and his name will not soon pass away from the memory of his countrymen. 


ANDERSON county was formed in 1827, and named for the Hon. 
Richard C. Anderson. It is situated in the middle portion of the 
state ; the Kentucky river forming its northern boundary, and 
Salt river entering its southern border from Mercer, penetrating 
near the center, when it takes a different direction, and flows out 
on the western border, passing through Spencer, and uniting with 
the Rolling Fork in Bullitt county. The county is bounded on the 
north by Franklin ; east by the Kentucky river ; south by Mercer 
and Washington ; and west by Spencer county. The tributaries 
of Salt river are Crooked, Fox, Stoney, and Hammond creeks; 
while Bailey's run, Little Benson, and Gilbert's creek fall into the 
Kentucky river. The surface is generally rolling, though some 


portions are level, rich, and very productive the hills producing 
fine tobacco and grasses. The staple products are wheat, corn, 
hemp, and tobacco ; the articles of export, horses, mules, cattle, 
and hogs. 

The auditor's report for 1846, gives to this county 101,891 acres 
of land ; average value of land per acre, $5,66 ; total valuation 
of taxable property, $1,137,922; number of white males over 
twenty-one years of age, 1,001 ; number of children between five 
and sixteen years old, 1,401. Population in 1830, 4,542 ; in 1840, 

LAWRENCEBURG, the county seat of Anderson, is situated on the 
turnpike road leading from Louisville to Harrodsburg, fifty-five 
miles from the former, and twenty from the latter place ; three 
and a half miles from lock and dam No. five, and twelve miles 
from Frankfort. Contains four stores, four groceries, two taverns, 
a handsome court house and other public buildings ; Reformed or 
Christian, Presbyterian and Baptist churches ; one seminary ; five 
lawyers ; four doctors ; one each, carpenter, hatter, gunsmith, and 
blacksmith shops population 350. Established in 1820, and 
called after Capt. James Lawrence, of the U. S. navy, whose 
last words on board the Chesapeake, it will be remembered, were, 
" Don't give up the ship." This place was first settled by an old 
Dutchman by the name of Coffman, who was killed by the In- 
dians. When his good wife first heard of his melancholy fate, 
she exclaimed in the bitterness of her affliction, " I always told 
my old man that these savage Ingcns would kill him ; and I'd 
rather lost my best cow at the pail than my old man." 

RICHARD CLOUGH ANDERSON, JR., (in honor of whom the county of Anderson 
was named,) was born at Louisville, in the then district of Kentucky, on the 4th 
day of August, 1788. His father was Richard C. Anderson, Sr., who served 
with great gallantry, as an officer, throughout the revolutionary war, at the con- 
clusion of which he was a lieutenant colonel. His mother was Elizabeth Clark, 
a sister of the celebrated General George Rogers Clark. 

Mr. Anderson was sent at an early age to Virginia for his education ; and 
after being graduated at William and Mary college, studied law under Judge 
Tucker. Upon his return to Kentucky he commenced the practice of his profes- 
sion; and, possessing all the qualities, intellectual, moral and social, necessary 
to insure success, soon took a high stand at the bar, as an able counsellor, and 
as an eloquent advocate. His popular talents would not permit him long to 
devote himself to private pursuits. The solicitations of friends and a natural 
ambition, drew him, in a very short time, into the service of the public. He 
commenced his career, as a politician, in the popular branch of the State legis- 
lature, in which he served several years, with distinguished credit to himself, 
and with the marked approbation of his constituents. He was accordingly 
elected to congress, in 1817, by a handsome majority over his opponent the old 
incumbent. In congress he continued four years, during which time he partici- 
pated in the splendid debates of that most interesting period, with an ability and 
success, which reflected no slight honor on his character as an orator and a 
statesman. His reported speeches, during this period, are admirable for their 
terseness, beauty of arrangement, closeness of argument, and unambitious ele- 
gance of diction ; but they now lack the charm of that distinct and melodious elo- 
cution that graceful arid manly and persuasive manner which gave interest and 
attractiveness to their delivery. In 1822, declining a re-election to congress, 
under the belief that his services were more needed in the councils of his own 
State, than in those of the nation, he again entered the State legislature, and 


was chosen speaker of the house of representatives. The duties of this office 
he discharged, in that most excited period of our State history, with a courtesy, 
propriety, discretion and ability, that caused him to be regarded, by many of 
that day, as the perfect model of a presiding officer. This was the origin of 
the angry controversy existing between the old and new court parties, to the 
former of which Mr. Anderson belonged. In January, 1823, Mr. Anderson was 
appointed, by President Monroe, the first minister plenipotentiary to the Republic 
of Colombia. Upon his arrival at Bogota the capital with his family, he 
was received with every demonstration of honor and respect. He resided there 
but a very short time, before he came to be regarded, by the authorities of the 
republic, rather as a friend and counsellor than as a stranger. His intercourse 
with the principal officers of state, was of the most agreeable and confidential 
character. In 1824 he negotiated the treaty between the two republics, which 
was ratified among the last acts of President Monroe's administration. In 1825 
he lost his wife an admirable and estimable lady, to whom he was most ten- 
derly attached. This loss induced him to return home for a short time, in order 
to place his children two daughters and a son with his friends in Kentucky. 
In October of that year, he revisited Bogota, accompanied by his brother, now 
Captain Robert Anderson of the U. S. Army, and remained until July, 1826, 
when he was instructed by President Adams to repair to Porto Bello, to join 
Mr. Sergeant, who had been appointed together with himself, an envoy extraor- 
dinary and minister plenipotentiary to the congress to be assembled at Panama. 
On his way to Carthagena, his intended place of embarkation, he fell sick at 
Turbaco, a small village some twelve miles distant from that city, where, on the 
24th day of July, his disease terminated in death. He was succeeded in his 
mission to Colombia, by the late ex-president of the United States, General 
William H. Harrison. 

Thus prematurely ended a brilliant career of usefulness and honor, and of still 
higher promise. The writer of this slight sketch heard one of the most distin- 
guished men of our country declare, that Mr. Anderson's death alone in all pro- 
bability, prevented his reaching the highest office in the Union. A brief but 
discriminating notice by the editor, in the National Intelligencer, of August 29th, 
1826, renders the following just tribute to his worth and memory. " The United 
States in general, and his native State of Kentucky in particular, have sustained 
a great loss in the death of this distinguished gentleman. On his former visit to 
Colombia he lost his excellent wife which bereavement he did not long survive. 

" Mr. Anderson was one of the most amiable of men, and most discreet of politi- 
cians. A career of a few years in congress disclosed his valuable qualities. He 
possessed in an eminent degree, a clear discriminating mind, combined with the 
most conciliatory and persuasive address, the effect of which has often been seen 
on the floor of the house of representatives, and afterwards on that of the popu- 
lar branch of the legislature of Kentucky, in the midst of the greatest conten- 
tions, like oil stilling the agitated waves of the ocean. In this point of his char- 
acter, it is sufficient praise to say, he nearly resembled the late lamented 
WILLIAM LOWNDES. In brief, without offence be it said, the country could 
not boast a better man than Richard C. Anderson." 

Mr. Anderson was so actively engaged in professional and political pursuits, 
that he had but little leisure for literature. He was fondly addicted, however, to 
reading, and devoted most of his spare time to books principally of biography 
and history. His writings are few, but those few are characterised by strong 
sense, sober reasoning and sagacious insight. He was the author of the article 
in the North American Review, for October, 1826, on the constitution of Colom- 
bia an article well worthy of perusal for its general excellence, as well as for 
the statesman-like suggestions it contains, relative to our own constitution. He 
was also engaged on a larger work, upon the political institutions and history of 
Colombia, the completion of which was unfortunately frustrated by his untimely 
death. Besides these, a fragmentary journal, of the last few years of his life 
still exists, possessing great interest, from the judicious observations upon books, 
and the shrewd remarks upon men and events, with which it is interspersed. 

In making an estimate of the character of Mr. Anderson, in his public and 
private relations, it may be truly said of him, that while in private life he was 
without a vice, in his public career he was equally without a reproach. 



BALLARD county was formed out of parts of M'Cracken and 
Hickman in 1842, and named in honor of Capt. BLAND BALLARD. It 
is situated in the extreme western part of the state, and bounded 
on the north by the Ohio river ; on the west, by the Mississippi ; 
on the east by the counties of Graves and M'Cracken, and on the 
south by the county of Hickman. The lands in the northern part 
of the county are barren ; in the southern, well timbered, both 
regions undulating. The bottoms of the Ohio and Mississippi 
are extensive, soil, a mixture of black loam and sand, and very 
productive. The principal creek is Mayfield; heads in Tennessee, 
passes through Galloway and Graves counties, thence through 
the center of Ballard, running north-west, and empties into the 
Mississippi at Fort Jefferson. Humphrey's creek heads in Mc- 
Cracken, passes through the north-east corner of Ballard, and 
empties into the Ohio below the Grand Chain. This county 
contains, according to the auditor's report for 1846, 243,675 
acres of land ; average value per acre, $1,80 ; total value of tax- 
able property, $632,131 ; number of white males over twenty- 
one years old, 706 ; number of children between five and sixteen 
years old, one thousand. Principal productions of the county, 
tobacco, hemp, corn, and oats. Stock raising is also beginning to 
attract the attention of farmers. 

The towns of the county are Blandville, Lovelaceville, and 
Milbourn. BLANDVILLE is the county seat, and contains a court 
house and other public buildings ; two churches (United Baptist 
and Methodist), two schools, four stores, three taverns, nine law- 
yers, seven doctors, nine mechanical trades population four 
hundred. Called for the Christian name of Captain Bland Bal- 
lard, for whom the county was named. 

LOVELACEVILLE is a small village, named in honor of Mr. Love- 
lace, containing one United Baptist church, one Methodist church, 
one school, one store, one tavern, two physicians, two mechan- 
ical trades population forty. 

MILBOURN contains two churches (Methodist and Christian), two 
schools, two stores, one tavern, three physicians, three mechan- 
ical trades population ninety. 

CAPTAIN BLAND BALLARD, in honor of whom this county was named, was born 
near Fredericksburg, Virginia, on the 16th of October, 1761, and is now in his 
87th year. He came to Kentucky in 1779, and joined the regular militia which 
was kept up for the defence of the country; and after serving on Bowman's cam- 
paign in 1779, accompanied the expedition led by Gen. Clark against the Pick- 
away towns in Ohio in 1781, on which occasion he received a severe wound in the 
hip, from the effects of which he is suffering at this day. At the time of the 
wound, he was near bleeding to death before he could procure surgical aid. In 
1782, he was on the campaign led by Gen. Clark, with Floyd and Logan as 
colonels, that destroyed the Pickaway towns. In 1786 he was a spy for General 
Clark in the expedition to the Wabash, rendered abortive by the mutiny of the 
soldiers. In the summer of 1791, he served as a guide under Generals Scott and 


Wilkinson, and was present under General Wayne at the decisive battle on the 
20th of August, 1794. 

When not engaged in regular campaign, he served as hunter and spy for Gen- 
eral Clark, who was stationed at Louisville, and in this service he continued fol 
two years and a half. During this time he had several rencounters with the In- 
dians. One of these occurred just below Louisville. He had been sent in his 
character of spy to explore the Ohio from the mouth of Salt river to the falls, 
and from thence up to what is now the town of Westport. On his way down 
the river, when six or eight miles below the falls, he heard, early one morning, 
a noise on the Indiana shore. He immediately concealed himself in the bushes, 
and when the fog had scattered sufficiently to permit him to see, he discov- 
ered a canoe filled with three Indians, approaching the Kentucky shore. When 
they had approached within range, he fired and killed one. The others jumped, 
overboard, and endeavored to get their canoe into deep water, but before they 
succeeded, he killed a second, and finally the third. Upon reporting his morning's 
work to General Clark, a detachment was sent down, who found the three dead 
Indians and buried them. For this service General Clark gave him a linen shirt, 
and some other small presents. This shirt, however, was the only one he had for 
several years, except those made of leather ; of this shirt the pioneer hero was 
doubtless justly proud. 

While on a scout to the Saline Licks, on one occasion, Ballard, with one com- 
panion, came suddenly upon a large body of Indians, just as they were in the 
act of encamping. They immediately charged, firing their guns and raising the 
yell. This induced the Indians, as they had anticipated, to disperse for the mo- 
ment, until the strength of the assailing party could be ascertained. During this 
period of alarm, Ballard and his companion mounted two of the best horses they 
could find, and retreated for two days and nights, until they reached the Ohio, 
which they crossed upon a raft, making their horses swim. As they ascended the 
Kentucky bank, the Indians reached the opposite shore. 

At the time of the defeat on Long Run, he was living at Lynn's station on 
Beargrass, and came up to assist some families in moving from Squire Boon's 
station, near the present town of Shelbyville. The people of this station had be- 
come alarmed on account of the numerous Indian signs in the country, and had 
determined to move to the stronger stations on the Beargrass. They proceeded 
safely until they arrived near Long Run, when they were attacked front and rear 
by the Indians, who fired their rifles and then rushed on them with their toma- 
hawks. Some few of the men ran at the first fire, of the others, some succeeded 
in saving part of their families, or died with them after a brave resistance. The 
subject of this sketch, after assisting several of the women on horseback who had 
been thrown at the first onset, during which he had one or two single handed 
combats with the Indians, and seeing the party about to be defeated, he succeeded 
in getting outside of the Indian line, when he used his rifle with some effect, 
until he saw they were totally defeated. He then started for the station, pursued 
by the Indians, and on stopping at Floyd's Fork, in the bushes, on the bank, he 
saw an Indian on horseback pursuing the fugitives ride into the creek, and as he 
ascended the bank near to where Ballard stood, he shot the Indian, caught the 
horse and made good his escape to the station. Many were killed, the number 
not recollected, some taken prisoners, and some escaped to the station. They af- 
terwards learned from the prisoners taken on this occasion, that the Indians who 
attacked them were marching to attack the station the whites had deserted, but 
learning from their spies that they were moving, the Indians turned from the 
head of Bullskin and marched in the direction of Long Run. The news of this 
defeat induced Colonel Floyd to raise a party of thirty-seven men, with the in- 
tention of chastising the Indians. Floyd commanded one division and captain 
Holden the other, Ballard being with the latter. They proceeded with great 
caution, but did not discover the Indians until they received their fire, which 
killed or mortally wounded sixteen of their men. Notwithstanding the loss, the 
party under Floyd maintained their ground, and fought bravely until overpowered 
by three times their number, who appealed to the tomahawk. The retreat, how- 
ever, was completed without much further loss. This occasion has been rendered 
memorable by the magnanimous gallantry of young Wells (afterwards the Colo- 
Bel Wells of Tippecanoe), who saved the life of Floyd, his personal enemy, by 


the timely offer of his horse at a moment when the Indians were near to Floyd, 
who was retreating on foot and nearly exhausted. 

In 1788, the Indians attacked the little Fort on Tick creek (a few miles east 
of Shelbyville), where his father resided. It happened that his father had re- 
moved a short distance out of the fort, for the purpose of being convenient to the 
sugar camp. The first intimation they had of the Indians, was early in the 
morning, when his brother Benjamin went out to get wood to make a fire. They 
shot him and then assailed the house. The inmates barred the door and prepared 
for defence. His father was the only man in the house, and no man in the fort, 
except the subject of this sketch and one old man. As soon as he heard the 
guns he repaired to within shooting distance of his father's house, but dared not 
venture nearer. Here he commenced using his rifle with good effect. In the 
meantime the Indians broke open the house and killed his father, not before, how- 
ever, he had killed one or two of their number. The Indians, also, killed one 
full sister, one half sister, his step-mother, and tomahawked the youngest sister, 
a child, who recovered. When the Indians broke into the house, his step-mother 
endeavored to effect her escape by the back door, but an Indian pursued her and 
as he raised his tomahawk to strike her, the subject of this sketch fired at the In- 
dian, not, however, in time to prevent the fatal blow, and they both fell and ex- 
pired together. The Indians were supposed to number about fifteen, and before 
they completed their work of death, they sustained a loss of six or seven. 

During the period he was a spy for General Clark, he was taken prisoner by 
five Indians on the other side of the Ohio, a few miles above Louisville, and con- 
ducted to an encampment twenty-five miles from the river. The Indians treated 
him comparatively well, for though they kept him with a guard they did not tie 
him. On the next day after his arrival at the encampment, the Indians were 
engaged in horse racing. In the evening two very old warriors were to have a 
race, which attracted the attention of all the Indians, and his guard left him a 
few steps to see how the race would terminate. Near him stood a fine black 
horse, which the Indians had stolen recently from Beargrass, and while the atten- 
tion of the Indians was attracted in a different direction, Ballard mounted this 
horse and had a race indeed. They pursued him nearly to the river, but he escaped, 
though the horse died soon after he reached the station. This was the only in- 
stance, with the exception of that at the river Raisin, that he was a prisoner. He 
was in a skirmish with the Indians near the Saline Licks, Colonel Hardin being 
the commander; the Colonel Hardin who fought gallantly under Morgan at the 
capture of Burgoyne, and who fell a sacrifice to Indian perfidy in the north- 
west; the father of General M. D^ Hardin,. and grand-father of the Col. Hardin 
of Illinois, whose heroic death at Buena Vista was worthy of his unsullied life. 

In after life Major Ballard repeatedly represented the people of Shelby county 
in the legislature, and commanded a company in Colonel Allen's regiment under 
General Harrison in the campaign of 1812-13. He led the advance of the detach- 
ment, which fought the first battle of the river Raisin was wounded slightly on 
that day, and severely by a spent ball on the 22d January. This wound, also, con- 
tinues to annoy his old age. On this disastrous occasion he was taken prisoner, 
and suffered severely by the march through snow and ice, from Maiden to Fort 

As an evidence of the difficulties which surrounded the early pioneer in this 
country, it may be proper to notice an occasion in which Major Ballard was dis- 
turbed by the Indians at the spot where he now resides. They stole his only 
horse at night. He heard them when they took the horse from the door to which 
he was tied. His energy and sagacity was such, that he got in advance of the 
Indians before they reached the Ohio, waylaid them, three in number, shot the 
one riding his horse, and succeeded not only in escaping, but in catching the 
horse and riding back in safety. 

The generation now on the sphere of action, and the millions who are to suc- 
ceed them in the great valley, will have but an imperfect idea of the character and 
services of the bold patriotic men, who rescued Kentucky from the forest and the 
savage. The subject of this sketch, however, is a fine specimen of that noble 
race of men, and when his gray hairs shall descend to an honorable grave, this 
short biography may serve, in some degree, to stimulate the rising generation to 
emulate his heroic patriotism. 



BARREN county was formed in 1798, and takes its name from 
what is generally termed the barrens or prairies which abound in 
the region of country in which it is located. It is bounded north 
by Hart ; east by Adair and Green ; south by Monroe, and west 
by Warren. Glasgow, the county seat, is about one hundred 
miles from Frankfort. The county embraces almost every des- 
cription of soil and surface. From Glasgow north and north- 
east for about ten miles, the land is level and the soil rich ; be- 
yond it is generally hilly and poor : the remainder of the county is 
mostly rolling, but with a productive soil. The sub-soil is of 
clay, founded on limestone. Fine springs abound ; and being 
well timbered and watered with several large creeks, saw and 
grist mills have been erected in abundance. The staple products 
are tobacco, corn, wheat, rye and oats. Tobacco is the most im- 
portant article of export from this county about twenty-five 
hundred hogsheads being the average annual product. Horses, 
mules, and hogs, are also raised for export. There are three salt 
furnaces in operation in the county, making from thirty to forty 
bushels each per day. 

In 1846, the number of acres of land reported was 359,941; 
average value per acre $3,34; total value of taxable property, 
$3,191,500: number of white males over twenty-one years of 
age, 2,769 ; number of children between five and sixteen years 
of age, 3,341. 

The towns of Barren are Glasgow, Chaplinton, Edmonton and 
Frederick. GLASGOW, the seat of justice, is situated on the turn- 
pike road leading from Louisville to Nashville, one hundred and 
twenty-six miles from Frankfort contains three meeting houses, 
in which seven denominations worship, viz : Methodists, Episco- 
palians, Reformers, Old and New School Presbyterians, Cumber- 
land Presbyterians and United Baptists ; two academies, male 
and female ; one school, thirteen stores, two groceries, eleven 
lawyers, five doctors, two tanneries, with a large number of me- 
chanical trades. Was established in 1809, and named after the 
old city of Glasgow, in Scotland. Population six hundred. 
Chaplinton, a small village on Big Barren river, contains a 
store, a post-office, etc. Edmonton, a small village eighteen miles 
south-east of Glasgow, contains one school, one store, one tan- 
nery, one doctor, post-office, etc. Frederick, situated seventeen 
miles north-east from Glasgow contains one school, two doc- 
tors, one tannery, etc. 

There are a number of mineral springs in Barren, which are considered effica- 
cious in many diseases ; but none have been as yet, much resorted to. There is 
a white sulphur spring on the east fork of Little Barren river, sixteen miles east 
of Glasgow, the waters from which, as they flow off, form quite a respectable 
branch, and is supposed to be the largest stream of mineral water in the Green 
river country. There is a well on Buck creek, fourteen miles nearly west of 


Glasgow, which was commenced for salt water, but at the depth of thirty feet or 
more, a very large stream of medical water was struck (sulphur, magnesia, etc.), 
which rises about four feet above the surface of the earth through a large pipe, 
and runs off in a branch of considerable size. This is becoming a place of con- 
siderable resort. There are, also, several smaller springs within a few miles of 
Glasgow, which are thought to be very beneficial to invalids. 

The Indians in the early settlement, made but few incursions into this county. 
Edmund Rogers, one of the first surveyors and pioneers, was compelled on 
several occasions, to abandon his surveys from the signs or attacks of Indians. 
On one occasion when in hot pursuit of him, they overtook and killed one of his 
company and he imputes his escape alone to the time occupied in dispatching 
the unfortunate individual who fell into their hands. 

EDMUND ROGERS, one of the pioneers of the Green river country, was born in 
Caroline county, Virginia, on the 5th of May, 1762. He served as a soldier in 
the memorable campaign of 1781, in his native State, which resulted in the cap- 
ture of Cornwallis. He was in the battles of Green Springs, Jamestown, and at 
the siege of York. For these services he refused to apply for a pension, although 
entitled under the acts of congress. It was the love of his country's liberty and 
independence, and no pecuniary reward, which induced him to fight her battles. 
He emigrated to Kentucky in 1783, and became intimate with most of the early 
pioneers. He possessed a remarkable memory, and could detail with accuracy 
up to the time of his death, all the important events of the Indian wars and early 
settlement of Kentucky. He had enjoyed better opportunities to learn the his- 
tory of these transactions than most persons, in consequence of his intimacy with 
General George Rogers Clark (his cousin), and captain John Rogers (his brother), 
and captain Abraham Chapline, of Mercer, in whose family he lived for years. 

Mr. E. Rogers was the longest liver of that meritorious and enterprising class 
of men who penetrated the wilderness of Kentucky, and spent their time in 
locating and surveying lands. It is confidently believed that he survived all the 
surveyors of military lands south of Green river. He began business as a sur- 
veyor in the fall of 1783, in Clark's or the Illinois grant as it was called, on the 
north side of the Ohio river, opposite to Louisville. In the spring of 1784, his 
operations were changed to the military district in this State, on the south side of 
Green river. He made most of the surveys on Little and Big Barren rivers and 
their tributary streams. Muldrough's hill was the boundary of the settlements 
towards the south-west in Kentucky, when Mr. Rogers commenced surveying in 
the military district. He settled upon a tract of land, upon which he afterwards 
laid out the town of Edmonton in Barren county, in the year 1800. He married 
Mary Shirley in 1808. She died in 1835, leaving seven daughters and one son. 
In 1840 owing to his advanced age, he broke up house keeping and removed with 
his single daughters to the house of his son John T. Rogers, where he died on 
the 28th day of August, 1843. His remains were taken to his own farm and 
buried by the side of his wife near Edmonton. 

In purity of life and manly virtues, Mr. Rogers had but few equals. His in- 
tercourse with mankind was characterized by great benevolence and charity, and 
the strictest justice. He was ever ready to lend a helping hand to the needy and 
deserving. He raised and educated his nephew, the honorable Joseph Rogers 

He was not ambitious of distinction. He accepted the office of justice of the 
peace shortly after he settled in Barren county, at the solicitation of his neigh- 
bors. Perceiving as he thought, an act of partiality on the part of the court, he 
resigned his commission at the first court he ever attended, and thereafter per- 
sisted in his resolution to hold no office. 

Mr. Rogers believed that the distinctions made among men, arising from the 
offices they filled, without regard to their intellectual and moral attainments and 
qualifications, were often unjust. He therefore spurned official stations and those 
who filled them, when he thought genuine merit was overlooked, and the shallow 
and presumptuous promoted. He believed that the fortunes of meo, were con- 
troled by things apparently of little moment, and that there was in regulating 
and governing the affairs of this world, if not of the whole universe, a chain of 
causes and effects or consequences, in which every link was just as important as 


every other in the eyes of God, although in the estimation of men, they were re- 
garded as very different in importance. To his philosophic mind, he saw what 
mankind usually call great things, springing as results from very little things, 
and he was not disposed to concede that the effect was entitled to more considera- 
tion than the cause. He admitted a controling providence, which operated in a 
manner inscrutable to man ; and hence he never despised what were called little 
things, and never became greatly excited with passionate admiration for what 
were called great things. He admitted there were two great principles at work 
in the earth, one of good, the other of evil. His affections and his actions were 
all with the good. 

In illustration of his idea that apparent trifles were important affairs, he often 
told the writer that the most consequential events of his life, had been the result 
of his falling off a log and getting wet, in attempting to cross a creek. This 
happened the day he left Pitman's station to go into the wilderness south of 
Green river. He got his papers wet, and was induced to return to the station to 
dry them, and then to take a new start. Upon his return, he met with a stranger 
who had a large number of land warrants, and made a contract with him for 
their location. Under this contract he secured the land around Edmonton 
where he lived, and upon these facts he reasoned thus : " If I had not fallen into 
the creek, I should not have turned back ; if I had not returned to the station, I 
should not have made the contract by which I obtained the land on which I set- 
tled; if I had not got that land, I should not have lived upon it; if I had not 
lived there, I should have been thrown into a different society, and most probably 
would never have seen the lady I married, and of course would not have had 
the wife and children I have ; and as a further consequence, the very existence 
and destiny of those children and their descendants through all coming genera- 
tions, and the influence they may exercise in families, neighborhoods and coun- 
ties, depended upon my falling from the log." 

Mr. Rogers and his brother captain John Rogers, made a very singular contract. 
It was firmly agreed between them, that he who died first, should return from 
the world of spirits, and inform the other what was going- on there. This en- 
gagement between the brothers, was most seriously entered into. Mr. Rogers 
has often told the writer, that there could be no such thing as visits from the 
spirits of the dead, and holding intercourse with the living; for said he, if such a 
thing could be, I know my brother John would have kept and fulfilled his pro- 
mise. He discountenanced every thing of a superstitious character. 

The motto upon which Mr. Rogers acted through life, was "to do justice, love 
mercy and walk humbly before God." He often repeated these words as con- 
taining man's whole duty. 

His last illness was of short duration. He was in his perfect mind to the last 
breath. About an hour before he expired he was seen to smile, and being asked 
what occasioned it, he said, " he was thinking of the vain efforts of three of the 
best physicians in the country, to save the life of an old man when his time had 
come." He died with perfect composure and without a struggle. 

Inscription. Mr. Butler, in his History of Kentucky, states, upon the author- 
ity of Judge Underwood, that Edmund Rogers had discovered on a beech tree, 
standing upon the margin of the east fork of the south branch of Little Barren 
river, before there was any settlement south of Green river, the following inscrip- 
tion : " James M'Call, of Mecklenburg county, North Carolina, June 8th, 1770." 
These words were cut in very handsome letters, with several initials of other 

ANTIQUITIES. The most remarkable mounds in the county, are situated at the 
mouth of Peter's creek, on Big Barren river. Twelve miles south-west from 
Glasgow, on the turnpike leading to Nashville, and immediately in the fork of 
the river and creek, there are a large number of small mounds, which closely 
resemble each other in size and shape. They now appear to be two or three feet 
high, of an oval form, about fifty yards apart, forming a circle of from four to five 
hundred yards in circumference, and presenting strong indications of having had 
huts or some other kind of buildings upon them. About the center of the circle 
of small mounds, is situated a large mound, twenty or thirty feet high, and from 
ninety to one hundred feet in diameter. Without the circle, about one hundred 


yards distant, is another large mound, about the same dimensions of the one 
within the circle of small ones. Upon these mounds trees are growing, which 
measure five feet in diameter. Some two hundred yards from these mounds, are 
a number of small mounds, which contain bones, teeth, and hair of human beings, 
in a perfect state of preservation. These bones are found in graves about three 
feet long, and from one to one and a half feet wide, all lined with flat stones. In 
the neighborhood, for half a mile or more, are found many of these graves. There 
is a large warehouse standing on the mound which is within the circle of small 

There is a cave in the bluff of the river, about three miles above Glasgow, 
which contains a large number of bones; but it is of small dimensions, and no 
correct description has been obtained of it. On Skegg's creek, about five miles 
south-west of Glasgow, there is a small cave, in which human bones have been 
found, but they appeared to be those of infants altogether. One bone was found, 
which seemed to be that part of the skull bone about the crown of the head ; it 
was made round, about two and a half inches in diameter, scolloped on the edges, 
and carved on the outside. Whether this was made for an ornament, or for eating 
out of, could not well be determined, although it was sufficiently large to be used 
as a spoon. 


BATH county was organized in 1811, and is situated in the eas- 
tern part of the State, and lies on Licking river. It is bounded 
on the north and east by Fleming, south by Morgan, and west by 
Montgomer}^. It received its name from the great number of 
medicinal springs which abound in the county. The celebrated 
Olympian or Mud Lick springs are situated here, which contain 
a variety of waters, such as salt, black and red sulphur, and cha- 
lybeate of iron. Four miles east of these springs is the White 

Lands reported for the county in 1846, 205,261 acres ; average 
value per acre, $8,63 ; total valuation of taxable property, $3,- 
006,835. White males over twenty-one years old, 1,732 ; children 
between five and sixteen years old 2,420. Population in 1830, 
8,799 in 1840, 9,763. 

Licking river washes the entire north-east boundary of the 
county, and it is watered by several fine streams, flowing through 
various portions of it. The surface is diversified hilly, undula- 
ting, and level. The soil north and west of Slate creek, is rich 
and fertile, being based upon limestone ; south and east the 
county abounds in iron and coal, and the soil is not so good. Im- 
mediately around Sharpsburg, for several miles, the surface is 
gently undulating, and the lands highly cultivated, rich, and very 
productive. The principal articles of production and commerce, 
are cattle, mules, hogs, corn, and wheat. There are two iron 
furnaces and one forge in the county, manufacturing about two 
thousand tons of iron per year. 

The towns of the county are, Owingsville, Sharpsburg, Wyo- 
ming, and Bethel. OWINGSVILLE is the seat of justice, and con- 
tains two churches, two taverns, a fine court house, post office, 
five stores and groceries, three doctors, seven lawyers, two schools 


one blacksmith shop, one tailor, one saddler, &c. Incorporated 
in 1829, and named in honor of Col. Thomas Dye Owings. Pop- 
ulation three hundred. 

SHARPSBURG is situated on the Maysville and Mount Sterling 
turnpike road, thirty-eight miles from the former, and twelve 
from the latter place, and twelve miles west of Owings ville. It 
contains three churches, one tavern, four stores, six doctors, two 
saw mills, one bagging factory, one male and one female school, 
two wool factories, and ten mechanical shops. Established in 
1825, and named for Moses Sharp. 

WYOMING, a small village at the mouth of Slate creek, contains 
two stores, two taverns, two cabinet shops, one blacksmith shop, 
two grist and saw mills. 

BETHEL, a small village on the main route from Maysville to 
Mount Sterling, contains a post office, one store, one tavern, two 
saddler's shops, blacksmith and hat shops thirty inhabitants. 

The following interesting incident in the early settlement of Bath county, is 
related in McClung's "Sketches of Western Adventure," a work published by 
the author of these notes in the year 1832 : 

"In the month of August, 1786, Mr. Francis Downing, then a mere lad, was 
living in a fort, where subsequently some iron works were erected by Mr. Jacob 
Myers, which are now known by the name of Slate creek works, and are the 
property of Colonel Thomas Dye Owings. About the 16th, a young man be- 
longing to the fort, called upon Downing, and requested his assistance in hunting 
for a horse which had strayed away on the preceding evening. Downing readily 
complied, and the two friends traversed the woods in every direction, until at 
length, towards evening, they found themselves in a wild valley, at the distance 
of six or seven miles from the fort. Here Downing became alarmed, and repeat- 
edly assured his elder companion, (whose name was Yates), that he heard sticks 
cracking behind them, and was confident that Indians were dogging them. Yates, 
being an experienced hunter, and from habit grown indifferent to the dangers of 
the woods, diverted himself freely at the expense of his young companion, often 
inquiring, at what price he rated his scalp, and offering to ensure it for a six- 

" Downing, however, was not so easily satisfied. He observed, that in what- 
ever direction they turned, the same ominous sounds continued to haunt them, 
and as Yates still treated his fears with the most perfect indifference, he deter- 
mined to take his measures upon his own responsibility. Gradually slackening 
his pace, he permitted Yates to advance twenty or thirty steps in front of him, 
and immediately afterwards descending a gentle hill, he suddenly sprung aside, 
and hid himself in a thick cluster of whortleberry bushes. Yates, who at that 
time was performing some woodland ditty to the full extent of his lungs, was too 
much pleased with his own voice to attend either to Downing or the Indians, and 
was quickly out of sight. Scarcely had he disappeared, when Downing, to his 
unspeakable terror, beheld two savages put aside the stalks of a canebrake, and 
look out cautiously in the direction which Yates had taken. 

" Fearful that they had seen him step aside, he determined to fire upon them, 
and trust to his heels for safety, but so unsteady was his hand, that in raising his 
gun to his shoulder, she went off before he had taken aim. He lost no time in 
following her example, and after running fifty yards, he met Yates, who, alarmed 
at the report, was hastily retracing his steps. It was not necessary to inquire 
what was the matter. The enemy were in full view, pressing forward with great 
- rapidity, and "devil take the hindmost," was the order of the day. Yates would 
not outstrip Downing, but ran by his side, although in so doing he risked both 
of their lives. The Indians were well acquainted with the country, and soon 
took a path that diverged from the one which the whites followed, at one point, 
and rejoined it at another, bearing the same relation to it, that the string does to 
the bow 


" The two paths were at no point distant from each other more than one hun- 
dred yards, so that Yates and Downing could easily see the enemy gaining rap- 
idly upon them. They reached the point of re-union first, however, and quickly 
came to a deep gully which it was necessary to cross, or retrace their steps. 
Yates cleared it without difficulty, but Downing, being much exhausted, fell 
short, and falling with his breast against the opposite brink, rebounded with vio- 
lence, and fell at full length upon the bottom. The Indians crossed the ditch a 
few yards below him, and eager for the capture of Yates, continued the pursuit, 
without appearing to notice Downing. The latter, who at first had given himself 
up for lost, quickly recovered his strength, and began to walk slowly along the 
ditch, fearing to leave it, lest the enemy should see him. As he advanced, how- 
ever, the ditch became more shallow, until at length it ceased to protect him 
at all. 

" Looking around cautiously, he saw one of the Indians returning, apparently 
in quest of him. Unfortunately, he had neglected to reload his gun, while in the 
ditch, and as the Indian instantly advanced upon him, he had no resource but 
flight. Throwing away his gun, which was now useless, he plied his legs man- 
fully in ascending the long ridge which stretched before him, but the Indian 
gained on him so rapidly that he lost all hope of escape. Coming at length to a 
large poplar which had been blown up by the roots, he ran along the body of the 
tree upon one side, while the Indian followed it upon the other, doubtless expect- 
ing to intercept him at the root. But here the supreme dominion of fortune was 

" It happened that a large she bear was suckling her cubs in a bed which she 
had made at the root of the tree, and as the Indian reached that point first, she 
instantly sprung upon him, and a prodigious uproar took place. The Indian yelled, 
and stabbed with his knife ; the bear growled and saluted him with one of her 
most endearing " hugs ;" while Downing, fervently wishing her success, ran off 
through the woods, without waiting to see the event of the struggle. Downing 
reached the fort in safety, and found Yates reposing after a hot chase, having 
eluded his pursuers, and gained the fort two hours before him. On the next morn- 
ing, they collected a party and returned to the poplar tree, but no traces either of 
the Indian or bear were to be found. They both probably escaped with their 
lives, although not without injury." 


BOONE county was formed in 1798, and named in honor of 
Colonel Daniel Boone. It is situated in the most northern part 
of the state, in a well known bend of the Ohio river, called 
North Bend. The average length of the county is about twenty 
miles, from north to south, and its average breadth about four- 
teen miles. It is bounded on the east by Kenton, on the south 
by Grant and Gallatin counties, and on the north and west by 
the Ohio river, which flows along its border about forty miles, 
dividing it from the states of Ohio and Indiana. The surface of 
the county is generally hilly, but still there is a considerable 
quantity of level land in it, and nearly all the land is tillable. 
On the Ohio river there are found considerable bodies of level 
land called bottoms, the soil of which is very productive ; farther 
out from the river the land is good second rate. The taxable 
property in this county in 1846 was $3,332,138; number of acres 
of land, 153,330; average value of land per acre $14,39; white 
males over 21 years of age 1,959; children between 5 and 16 


years of age, 2,104 : population in 1830, 9,012; in 1840, 10,034, 
The staple productions are Indian corn, tobacco, oats, wheat 
whisky, flour, apples, and hogs ; timothy and blue grass grow 
luxuriantly in almost all parts of the county. The Covington 
and Lexington turnpike road runs about ten miles through this 
county. The principal streams and creeks are Woolper, Middle 
creek, Gunpowder and Big Bone creek, which is at its mouth and 
some distance up the south boundary of the county. 

The principal towns are Burlington, the seat of justice, situated 
six miles S. S. W. from the nearest point of the Ohio river ; Flo- 
rence, on the Covington and Lexington turnpike road ; Union ; 
Walton ; Verona ; Hamilton, on the Ohio river ; Petersburg, on 
the Ohio, and Francisville. 

BURLINGTON, the seat of justice, is situated fourteen miles from 
Cincinnati and seventy miles from Frankfort, contains four 
churches : Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian and Reformed ; Mor- 
gan's Academy, with an endowment of $5,000 and sixty stu- 
dents ; two schools, seven lawyers, five doctors, five stores, 
two taverns, one shoe and boot store, one wool factory, eight 
mechanics' shops, one tobacco factory, and a population of four 
hundred. It was incorporated in 1824. Florence contains two 
churches, three doctors, two stores, two taverns, two schools, four 
mechanics' shops, and a population of two hundred. It was in- 
corporated in 1830. Francisville contains one church, one tobacco 
factory, and one store. Hamilton contains one school, one tavern, 
three stores, two doctors, and a population of two hundred. Peters- 
burg contains two schools, one tobacco factory, one steam distil- 
lery and flouring mill, two churches, one tavern, two doctors, and 
a population of two hundred and fifty. Springtown, below Cov- 
ington, is a fishing place with seventy-five inhabitants. Union 
contains two churches, one store, one doctor, and fifty inhabitants. 
Walton contains one tavern and two tobacco factories, and has a 
population of fifty. 

Amongst the antiquities of this county is the site of an aboriginal burying 
ground, whose history is hid in the darkness of past ages, now covered by the 
flourishing town of Petersburg. In digging cellars for their houses, the inhabit- 
ants have excavated pieces of earthenware vessels and Indian utensils of stone, 
some of them curiously carved. A little above the town, on the bank of the 
river, are the remains of an ancient fortification. All that is now visible is an 
embankment or breastwork, about four feet high, and extending from the abrupt 
bank of the Ohio to the almost precipitous bank of Taylor's creek, including be- 
tween the river and the creek an area of about twenty or twenty-five acres of 

At the mouth of Woolper creek, about twelve miles nearly west from Burling- 
ton, is a singular chasm in a hill, which has been cleft from top to bottom. The 
part split off is separated by an interval of ten or twelve feet from the main 
body of the hill, thus forming a zigzag avenue through it from the low land or 
bottom on the Ohio river to Woolper creek. The north side of this chasm is a 
perpendicular wall of rock seventy or eighty feet high, composed of pebble 

In this county is situated the celebrated Big Bone Lick, about twelve miles a 
little west of south from Burlington, and one mile and a half east from Hamil- 
ton, on the Ohio river. The lick is situated in a valley which contains about 


one hundred acres, through which flows Big Bone creek. There are two prin- 
cipal springs, one of which is almost on the northern margin of the creek ; the 
other is south of the creek, and at the base of the hills which bound the valley. 
There is a third spring of smaller size some considerable distance north of the 
creek, which flows from a well sunk many years ago, when salt was manufac- 
tured at this lick. The valley is fertile, and surrounded by irregular hills of un- 
equal elevation, the highest being on the west, and attaining an altitude of five 
hundred feet. The back water from the river, at times, ascends the creek as far 
as the lick, which, by the course of the stream, is more than three miles from its 
mouth. At a very early day the surrounding forest had no undergrowth, the 
ground being covered with a smooth grassy turf, and the lick spread over an area 
of about ten acres. The surface of the ground within this area was generally 
depressed three or four feet below the level of the surrounding valley. This de- 
pression was probably occasioned as well by the stamping of the countless num- 
bers of wild animals, drawn thither by the salt contained in the water and im- 
pregnating the ground, as by their licking the earth to procure salt. There is no 
authentic account of this lick having been visited by white men before the year 
1773. In that year James Douglass, of Virginia, visited it, and found the ten 
acres constituting the lick bare of trees and herbage of every kind, and large num- 
bers of the bones of the mastodon or mammoth, and the arctic elephant, scattered 
upon the surface of the ground. The last of these bones which thus lay upon 
the surface of the earth, were removed more than forty years ago ; but since that 
time a considerable number have been exhumed from beneath the soil, which 
business has been prosecuted as zealously by some, as others are wont to dig 
for hidden treasures. Some of the teeth of these huge animals would weigh 
near ten pounds, and the surface on which the food was chewed was about seven 
inches long and four or five broad. A correspondent informs us that he had seen 
dug up in one mass, several tusks and ribs, and thigh bones, and one skull, be- 
sides many other bones. Tv/o of these tusks, which belonged to different ani- 
mals, were about eleven feet in length, and at the largest end six or seven inches 
in diameter; two others were seven or eight feet long. The thigh bones were 
four or five feet in length, and a straight line drawn from one end of some of the 
ribs to the other would be five feet; the ribs were between three and four inches 
broad. These dimensions correspond with what Mr. Douglass has said of the 
ribs which he used for tent poles when he visited the lick in 1773. Our corres- 
pondent thinks the skull above mentioned certainly belonged to a young animal, 
and yet the distance across the forehead and between the eyes was two feet, and 
the sockets of the tusks eighteen inches deep. The tusks which have been sta- 
ted to be seven or eight feet long exactly fitted these sockets. This lick is the 
only place in which these gigantic remains have been found in such large quan- 
tities, and deserves to be called the grave yard of the mammoth. The first collec- 
tion of these fossil remains was made by Dr. Goforth in 1803, and in 1806 was 
intrusted by him to the English traveler, Thomas Ashe, (the slanderer of our 
country), to be exhibited in Europe, who, when he arrived in England, sold the 
collection and pocketed the money. The purchaser afterwards transferred parts 
of this collection to the Royal College of Surgeons in London, to Dr. Blake of 
Dublin, and Professor Monroe of Edinburgh, and a part was sold at auction. 
The next collection was made by order of Mr. Jefferson, while he was president 
of the American Philosophical Society, about the year 1805, and was divided 
between that society and M. Ouvier, the distinguished French naturalist. A 
third collection was made in 1819, by the Western Museum society. In the year 
1831 a fourth collection was made by Mr. Finnell. This was first sold to a Mr. 
Graves for $2,000, and taken by him to the eastern states, and there sold for 

It has before been intimated that salt was once manufactured at this lick ; but 
since the year 1812 no effort of that kind has been made, as it requires five or six 
hundred gallons of the water to make a single bushel of salt. 

The springs at this place have been considerably frequented on account of 
their medicinal virtues; but at this time no accommodation of any sort for 
visiters is kept there, and but very inadequate accommodation is to be found 
any where in the neighborhood. 

The distinguished pioneer Colonel DANIEL BOONE, (in honor of whom Boone 


county was named, and who was the first white man who ever made a perma- 
nent settlement within the limits of the present State of Kentucky), was born in 
Bucks county, Pennsylvania, on the right bank of the Delaware river, on the 
llth of February, 1731. Of his life, but little is known previous to his emigra- 
tion to Kentucky, with the early history of which his name is, perhaps, more 
closely identified than that of any other man. The only sources to which we 
can resort for information, is the meagre narrative dictated by himself, in his old 
age, and which is confined principally to that period of his existence passed in 
exploring the wilderness of Kentucky, and which, therefore, embraces but a com- 
paratively small part of his life ; and the desultory reminiscences of his early as- 
sociates in that hazardous enterprise. This constitutes the sum total of our 
knowledge of the personal history of this remarkable man, to whom, as the 
founder of what may without impropriety be called a new empire, Greece and 
Rome would have erected statues of honor, if not temples of worship. 

It is said that the ancestors of Daniel Boone were among the original Catho- 
lic settlers of Maryland ; but of this nothing is known with certainty, nor is it, 
perhaps, important that anything should be. He was eminently the architect of 
his own fortunes ; a self formed man in the truest sense whose own innate en- 
ergies and impulses, gave the moulding impress to his character. In the years of 
his early boyhood, his father emigrated first to Reading, on the head waters of 
the Schuylkill, and subsequently to one of the valleys of south Yadkin, in North 
Carolina, where the subject of this notice continued to reside until his fortieth 
year. Our knowledge of his history during this long interval, is almost a per- 
fect blank; and although we can well imagine that he could not have passed to 
this mature age, without developing many of those remarkable traits, by which 
his subsequent career was distinguished, we are in possession of no facts out of 
which to construct a biography of this period of his life. We know, indeed, 
that from his earliest years he was distinguished by a remarkable fondness for 
the exciting pleasures of the chase ; that he took a boundless delight in the 
unrestrained freedom, the wild grandeur and thrilling solitude of those vast 
primeval forests, where nature in her solemn majesty, unmarred by the improving 
hand of man, speaks to the impressionable and unhacknied heart of the simple 
woodsman, in a language unknown to the dweller in the crowded haunts of men. 
But, in this knowledge of his disposition and tastes, is comprised almost all that 
can absolutely be said to be known of Daniel Boone, from his childhood to his 
fortieth year. 

In 1767, the return of Findley from his adventurous excursion into the unex- 
plored wilds beyond the Cumberland mountain, and the glowing accounts he 
gave of the richness and fertility of the new country, excited powerfully the 
curiosity and imaginations of the frontier backwoodsmen of Virginia and North 
Carolina, ever on the watch for adventures ; and to whom the lonely wilderness, 
with all its perils, presented attractions which were not to be found in the close 
confinement and enervating inactivity of the settlements. To a man of Boone's 
temperament and tastes, the scenes described by Findley, presented charms not 
to be resisted; and, in 1769, he left his family upon the Yadkin, and in com- 
pany with five others, of whom Findiey was one, he started to explore that 
country of which he had heard so favorable an account. 

Having reached a stream of water on the borders of the present State of Ken- 
tucky, called Red river, they built a cabin to shelter them from the inclemency 
of the weather, (for the season had been very rainy), and devoted their time to 
hunting and the chase, killing immense quantities of game. Nothing of particu- 
lar interest occurred until the 22d December, 1769, when Boone, in company 
with a man named Stuart, being out hunting, they were surprised and captured by 
Indians. They remained with their captors seven days, until having by a rare 
and powerful exertion of self-control, suffering no signs of impatience to escape 
them, succeeded in disarming the suspicions of the Indian^, their escape was ef- 
fected without difficulty. Through life, Boone was remarkable for cool, collected 
self-possession, in moments of most trying emergency, and on no occasion was this 
rare and valuable quality more conspicuously displayed than during* the time of 
this captivity. On regaining their camp, they found it dismantled and deserted. 
The fate of its inmates was never ascertained, and it is worthy of remark, that 
this is the last and almost the only glimpse we have of Findley, the first pioneer. 


A few days after this, they were joined by Squire Boone, a brother of the great 
pioneer, and another man, who had followed them from Carolina, and accidentally 
stumbled on their camp. Soon after this accession to their numbers, Daniel 
Boone and Stuart, in a second excursion, were again assailed by the Indians, and 
Stuart shot and scalped; Boone fortunately escaped. Their only remaining com- 
panion, disheartened by the perils to which they were continually exposed, re- 
turned to North Carolina; and the two brothers were left alone in the wilderness, 
separated by hundreds of miles from the white settlements, and destitute of every- 
thing but their rifles. Their ammunition running short, it was determined that 
Squire Boone should return to Carolina for a fresh supply, while his brother re- 
mained in charge of the camp. This resolution was accordingly carried into 
effect, and Boone was left for a considerable time to encounter or evade the teem- 
ing perils of his hazardous solitude alone. We should suppose that his situa- 
tion now would have been disheartening and wretched in the extreme. He him- 
self says, that for a few days after his brother left him, he felt dejected and 
lonesome, but in a short time his spirits recovered their wonted equanimity, and 
he roved through the woods in every direction, killing abundance of game and 
finding an unutterable pleasure in the contemplation of the natural beauties of 
the forest scenery. On the 27th of July, 1770, the younger Boone returned from 
Carolina with the ammunition, and with a hardihood almost incredible, the 
brothers continued to range through the country without injury until March, 1771, 
when they retraced their steps to North Carolina. Boone had been absent 
from his family for near three years, during nearly the whole of which time he 
had never tasted bread or salt, nor beheld the face of a single white man, with 
the exception of his brother and the friends who had been killed. 

We, of the present day, accustomed to the luxuries and conveniences of a 
highly civilized state of society lapped in the soft indolence of a fearless secu- 
rity accustomed to shiver at every blast of the winter's wind, and to tremble at 
every noise the origin of which is not perfectly understood can form but an im- 
perfect idea of the motives and influences which could induce the early pioneers 
of the west to forsake the safe and peaceful settlements of their native States, and 
brave the unknown perils, and undergo the dreadful privations of a savage and un- 
reclaimed wilderness. But, in those hardy hunters, with nerves of iron and sinews 
of steel, accustomed from their earliest boyhood to entire self-dependence for the 
supply of every want, there was generated a contempt of danger and a love for 
the wild excitement of an adventurous life, which silenced all the suggestions of 
timidity or prudence. It was not merely a disregard of danger which distin- 
guished these men, but an actual insensibility to those terrors which palsy the 
nerves of men reared in the peaceful occupations of a densely populated country. 
So deep was this love of adventure, which we attribute as the distinguishing 
characteristic of the early western hunters, implanted in the breast of Boone, that 
he determined to sell his farm, and remove with his family to Kentucky. 

Accordingly, on the 25th of September, 1771, having disposed of all his prop- 
erty, except that which he intended to carry with him to his new home, Boone 
and his family took leave of their friends, and commenced their journey west. 
In Powell's valley, being joined by five more families and forty men, well armed, 
they proceeded towards their destination with confidence; but when near the 
Cumberland mountains, they were attacked by a large party of Indians. These, 
after a severe engagement, were beaten off and compelled to retreat; not, how- 
ever, until the whites had sustained a loss of six men in killed and wounded. 
Among the killed, was Boone's eldest son. This foretaste of the dangers which 
awaited them in the wilderness they were about to explore, so discouraged the 
emigrants, that they immediately retreated to the settlements on Clinch river, a 
distance of forty miles from the scene of action. Here they remained until 1774. 
During this interval, Boone was employed by Governor Dunmore, of Virginia, 
to conduct a party of surveyors through the wilderness, to the falls of the Ohio, 
a distance of eight hundred miles. Of the incidents attending this expedition, 
we have no account whatever. After his return, he was placed by Dunmore in 
command of three frontier stations, or garrisons, and engaged in several affairs 
with the Indians. At about the same period, he also, at the solicitation of sev- 
eral gentlemen of North Carolina, attended a treaty with the Cherokees, known 
as the treaty of Wataga, for the purchase of the lands south of the Kentucky 


river. It was in connection with this land purchase, and under the auspices of 
Colonel Richard Henderson, that Boone's second expedition to Kentucky was 
made. His business was to mark out a road for the pack horses and waggons 
of Henderson's party. Leaving his family on Clinch river, he set out upon this 
hazardous undertaking at the head of a few men, in the early part of the year 
1775, and arrived, without any adventure worthy of note, on the 22nd of March, 
in the same year, at a point within fifteen miles of the spot where Boonesborough 
was afterwards built. Here they were attacked by Indians, and it was not until 
after a severe contest, and loss on the part of the whites of four men in killed 
and wounded, that they were repulsed. The attack was renewed the next day, 
and the whites sustained a loss of five more of their companions. On the first of 
April, they reached the southern bank of the Kentucky river, and began to build 
a fort, afterwards known as Boonesborough. On the 4th, they were again at- 
tacked by the Indians, and lost another man ; but, notwithstanding the dangers 
to which they were continually exposed, the work was prosecuted with indefat- 
igable diligence, and on the 14th of the month finally completed. Boone instantly 
returned to Clinch river for his family, determined to remove them to this new 
and remote settlement at all hazards. This was accordingly effected as soon as 
circumstances would permit. From this time, the little garrison was exposed to 
incessant assaults from the Indians, who appeared to be perfectly infuriated at the 
encroachments of the whites, and the formation of settlements in the midst of 
their old hunting grounds ; and the lives of the emigrants were passed in a con- 
tinued succession of the most appalling perils, which nothing but unquailing 
courage and indomitable firmness could have enabled them to encounter. They 
did, however, breast this awful tempest of war, and bravely, and successfully, 
and in defiance of all probability, the small colony continued steadily to increase 
and flourish, until the thunder of barbarian hostilities rolled gradually away to 
the north, and finally died in low mutterings on the frontiers of Ohio, Indi- 
ana, and Illinois. The summary nature of this sketch will not admit of more 
than a bare enumeration of the principal events in which Boone figured, in these 
exciting times, during which he stood the center figure, towering like a colossus 
amid that hardy band of pioneers, who opposed their breasts to the shock of that 
dreadful death struggle, which gave a yet more terrible significance, and a still 
more crimson hue, to the history of the old dark and bloody ground. 

In July, 1776, the people at the Fort were thrown into the greatest agitation 
and alarm, by an incident characteristic of the times, and which singularly illus- 
trates the habitual peril which environed the inhabitants. Two young ladies, a 
Miss Boone and a Miss Calloway, were amusing themselves in the neighborhood 
of the fort, when a concealed party of Indians suddenly rushed from the sur- 
rounding coverts and carried them away captives. The screams of the terrified 
girls instantly aroused the inmates of the garrison; but the men being generally 
dispersed in their usual avocations, Boone hastily pursued with a small party of 
only eight men. The little party, after marching hard during the night, came up 
with the Indians early in the next day, the pursuit having been conducted with 
such silence and celerity that the savages were taken entirely by surprise, and 
having no preparations for defence, they were routed almost instantly, and without 
difficulty. The young girls were restored to their gratified parents without having 
sustained the slightest injury or any inconvenience beyond the fatigue of the 
march and a dreadful fright. The Indians lost two men, while Boone's party was 

From this time until the 15th of April, the garrison was constantly harassed by 
flying parties of savages. They were kept in continual anxiety and alarm ; and 
the most ordinary duties could only be performed at the risk of their lives. 
"While plowing their corn, they were way-laid and shot; while hunting, they 
were pursued and fired upon; and sometimes a solitary Indian would creep up 
near the fort during the night, and fire upon the first of the garrison who appeared 
in the morning." On the 1 5th of April, a large body of Indians invested the 
fort, hoping to crush the settlement at a single blow; but, destitute as they were 
of scaling ladders, and all the proper means of reducing fortified places, they 
could only annoy the garrison, and destroy the property ; and being more exposed 
than the whites, soon retired precipitately. On the 4th of July following, they 
again appearal with a force of two hundred warriors, and were repulsed with 


loss. A short period of tranquil ity was now allowed to the harassed and dis- 
tressed garrison ; but this was soon followed by the most severe calamity that 
had yet befallen the infant settlement. This was the capture of Boone arid 
twenty-seven of his men in the month of January 1778, at the Blue Licks, whither 
he had gone to make salt for the garrison. He was carried to the old town of 
Chillicothe, in the present state of Ohio, where he remained a prisoner with the 
Indians until the 16th of the following June, when he contrived to make his 
escape, and returned to Boonsborough. 

During this period, Boone kept no journal, and we are therefore uninformed as 
to any of the particular incidents which occurred during his captivity. We only 
know, generally, that, by his equanimity, his patience, his seeming cheerful sub- 
mission to the fortune which had made him a captive, and his remarkable skill 
and expertness as a woodsman, he succeeded in powerfully exciting the admiration 
and conciliating the good will of his captors. In March, 1778, he accompanied 
the Indians on a visit to Detroit, where Governor Hamilton offered one hundred 
pounds for his ransom, but so strong was the affection of the Indians for their 
prisoner, that it was unhesitatingly refused. Several English gentlemen, touched 
with sympathy for his misfortunes, made pressing offers of money and other 
articles, but Boone steadily refused to receive benefits which he could never 

On his return from Detroit, he observed that large numbers of warriors had as- 
sembled, painted and equipped for an expedition against Boonsborough, and his 
anxiety became so great that he determined to effect his escape at every hazard. 
During the whole of this agitating period, however, he permitted no symptom of 
anxiety to escape; but continued to hunt and shoot with the Indians as usual, 
until the morning of the 16th of June, when, making an early start, he left Chil- 
licothe, and shaped his course for Boonsborough. This journey, exceeding a 
distance of one hundred and fifty miles, he performed in four days, during which 
he ate only one meal. He was received at the garrison like one risen from the 
dead. His family supposing him killed, had returned to North Carolina ; and 
his men, apprehending no danger, had permitted the defences of the fort to fall to 
decay. The danger was imminent; the enemy were hourly expected, and the 
fort was in no condition to receive them. Not a moment was to be lost: the gar- 
rison worked night and day, and by indefatigable diligence, everything was made 
ready within ten days after his arrival, for the approach of the enemy. At this 
time one of his companions arrived from Chillicothe, and reported that his escape 
had determined the Indians to delay the invasion for three weeks. The attack 
was delayed so long that Boone, in his turn, resolved to invade the Indian coun- 
try ; and accordingly, at the head of a select company of nineteen men, he 
marched against the town of Paint Creek, on the Scioto, within four miles of 
which point he arrived without discovery. Here he encountered a party of thirty 
warriors, on their march to join the grand army in its expedition against Boons- 
borough. This party he attacked and routed without loss or injury to himself; 
and, ascertaining that the main body of the Indians were on their march to 
Boonsborough, he retraced his steps for that place with all possible expedition. 
He passed the Indians on the 6th day of their march, and on the 7th reached the 
fort. The next day the Indians appeared in great force, conducted by Canadian 
officers well skilled in all the arts of modern warfare. The British colors were 
displayed and the fort summoned to surrender. Boone requested two days for 
consideration, which was granted. At the expiration of this period, having 
gathered in their cattle and horses, and made every preparation for a vigorous re- 
sistance, an answer was returned that the fort would be defended to the last. A 
proposition was then made to treat, and Boone and eight of the garrison, met 
the British and Indian officers, on the plain in front of the fort. Here, after they 
had went through the farce of pretending to treat, an effort was made to detain 
ftie Kentuckians as prisoners. This was frustrated by the vigilance and activity 
of the intended victims, who springing out from the midst of their savage foemon, 
ran to the fort under a heavy fire "of rifles, which fortunately wounded only one 
man. The attack instantly commenced by a heavy fire against the picketing, 
and was returned with fatal accuracy by the garrison. The Indians then at- 
tempted to push a mine into the fort, but their object being discovered by the 
quantity of fresh earth they were compelled to throw into the river, Boone cut a 


trench within the fort, in such a manner as to intersect their line of approach, 
and thus frustrated their design. After exhausting all the ordinary artifices of 
Indian warfare, and finding their numbers daily thinned by the deliberate and 
fatal fire from the garrison, they raised the siege on the ninth day after their first 
appearance, and returned home. The loss on the part of the garrison, was two 
men killed and four wounded. Of the savages, twenty -seven were killed and 
many wounded, who, as usual, were carried off. This was the last siege sus- 
tained by Boonsborough. 

In the fall of this year, Boone went to North Carolina for his wife and family, 
who, as already observed, had supposed him dead, and returned to their kindred. 
In the summer of 1780, he came back to Kentucky with his family, and settled 
at Boonsborough. In October of this year, returning in company with his 
brother from the Blue Licks, where they had been to make salt, they were^ en- 
countered by a party of Indians, and his brother, who had been his faithful com- 
panion through many years of toil and danger, was shot and scalped before his 
eyes. Boone, after a long and close chase, finally effected his escape. 

After this, he was engaged in no affair of particular interest, so far as we are 
informed* until the month of August, 178*2, a time rendered memorable by the 
celebrated and disastrous battle of the Blue Licks. A full account of this bloody 
and desperate conflict, will be found under the head of Nicholas county, to which 
we refer the reader. On this fatal day, he bore himself with distinguished 
gallantry, until the rout began, when, after having witnessed the death of his 
son, and many of his dearest friends, he found himself almost surrounded at the 
very commencement of the retreat. Several hundred Indians were between him 
and the ford, to which the great mass of the fugitives were bending their way, 
and to which the attention of the savages was particularly directed. Being inti- 
mately acquainted with the ground, he together with a few friends, dashed into 
the ravine which the Indians had occupied, but which most of them had now left 
to join in the pursuit. After sustaining one or two heavy fires, and baffling one 
or two small parties who pursued him for a short distance, he crossed the river 
below the ford by swimming, and returned by a circuitous route by Bryant's station. 

Boone accompanied General George Rogers Clark, in his expedition against 
the Indian towns, undertaken to avenge the disaster at the Blue Licks ; but be- 
yond the simple fact that he did accompany this expedition, nothing is known of 
his connection with it : and it does not appear that he was afterwards engaged in 
any public expedition or solitary adventure. 

The definitive treaty of peace between the United States and Great Britain, 
in 1783, confirmed the title of the former to independence, and Boone saw the 
standard of civilization and freedom securely planted in the wilderness. Upon 
the establishment of the court of commissioners in 1779, he had laid out the chief 
of his little property to procure land warrants, and having raised about twenty 
thousand dollars in paper money, with which he intended to purchase them, on 
his way from Kentucky to the city of Richmond, he was robbed of the whole, 
and left destitute of the means of procuring more. Unacquainted with the nice- 
ties of the law, the few lands he was enabled afterwards to locate, were, through 
his ignorance, swallowed up and lost by better claims. Dissatisfied with these 
impediments to the acquisition of the soil, he left Kentucky, and in 1795, he was 
a wanderer on the banks of the Missouri, a voluntary subject of the king of 
Spain. The remainder of his life was devoted to the society of his children, and 
the employments of the chase to the latter especially. When age had enfeebled 
the energies of his once athletic frame, he would wander twice a year into the 
remotest wilderness he could reach, employing a companion whom he bound by 
a written contract to take care of him, and bring him home alive or dead. In 
1816, he made such an excursion to Fort Osage, one hundred miles distant from 
the place of his residence. "Three years thereafter," says Gov. Morehead, "a 
patriotic solicitude to preserve his portrait, prompted a distinguished American 
artist to visit him at his dwelling near the Missouri river, and from him I have 
received the following particulars : He found him in a small, rude cabin, indis- 
posed, and reclining on his bed. A slice from the loin of a buck, twisted round 
the rammer of his rifle, within reach of him as he lay, was roasting before the 
fire. Several other cabins, arranged in the form of a parallelogram, marked the 
spot of a dilapidated station. They were occupied by the descendants of the 


pioneer. Here he lived in the midst of his posterity. His withered energies and 
locks of snow, indicated that the sources of existence were nearly exhausted." 
He died of fever, at the house of his son-in-law, in Flanders,Calloway county, Mo., 
in the year 1820, at the advanced age of 89 years. The legislature of Missouri was 
in session at St. Louis when the event was announced ; and a resolution was imme- 
diately passed, that, in respect for his memory, the members would wear the usual 
badge of mourning for twenty days, and an adjournment was voted for that day. 

It has been generally supposed that Boone was illiterate, and could neither 
read nor write, but this is an error. There is now in the possession of Mr. Jo- 
seph B. Boyd, of Maysville, an autograph letter of the old woodsman, &fac simile 
of which is herewith published. 

The following vigorous and eloquent portrait of the character of the old pio- 
neer, is extracted from Gov. Morehead's address, delivered at Boonsborough, in 
commemoration of the first settlement of Kentucky : 

" The life of Daniel Boone is a forcible example of the powerful influence 
which a single absorbing passion exerts over the destiny of an individual. Born 
with no endowments of intellect to distinguish him from the crowd of ordinary 
men, and possessing no other acquirements than a very common education 
bestowed, he was enabled, nevertheless, to maintain through a long and useful 
career, a conspicuous rank among the most distinguished of his cotemporaries ; 
and the testimonials of the public gratitude and respect with which he was hon- 
ored after his death, were such as are never awarded by an intelligent people to 
the undeserving. * * * * He came originally to the wilderness, not to settle 
and subdue it, but to gratify an inordinate passion for adventure and discovery 
to hunt the deer and buffalo to roam through the woods to admire the beauties 
of nature in a word, to enjoy the lonely pastimes of a hunter's life, remote from 
the society of his fellow men. He had heard, with admiration and delight, Finley's 
description of the country of Kentucky, and high as were his expectations, he found 
it a second paradise. Its lofty forests its noble rivers its picturesque scenery 
its beautiful valleys but above all, the plentifulness of "beasts of every Amer- 
ican kind" these were the attractions that brought him to it. * * * * * 
He united, in an eminent degree, the qualities of shrewdness, caution, and cour- 
age, with uncommon muscular strength. He was seldom taken by surprise he 
never shrunk from danger, nor cowered beneath the pressure of exposure and 
fatigue. In every emergency, he was a safe guide and a wise counsellor, because 
his movements were conducted with the utmost circumspection, and his judgment 
and penetration were proverbially accurate. Powerless to originate plans on a 
large scale, no individual among the pioneers could execute with more efficiency 
and success the designs of others. He took the lead in no expedition against the 
savages he disclosed no liberal and enlarged views of policy for the protection 
of the stations; and yet it is not assuming too much to say, that without him, in 
all probability, the settlements could not have been upheld, and the conquest of 
Kentucky might have been reserved for the emigrants of the nineteenth century. 
***** jji s mann ers were simple and unobtrusive exempt from the 
rudeness characteristic of the backwoodsman. In his person there was nothing 
remarkably striking. He was five feet ten inches in height, and of robust and 
powerful proportions. His countenance was mild and contemplative indicating 
a frame of mind altogether different from the restlessness and activity that dis- 
tinguished him. His ordinary habiliments were those of a hunter a hunting 
shirt and moccasins uniformly composing a part of them. When he emigrated to 
Louisiana, he omitted to secure the title to a princely estate, on the Missouri, 
because it would have cost him the trouble of a trip to New Orleans. He would 
have traveled a much greater distance to indulge his cherished propensities as an 
adventurer and a hunter. He died, as he had lived, in a cabin, and perhaps his 
trusty rifle was the most valuable of his chattels. 

Such was the man to whom has been assigned the principal merit of the dis- 
covery of Kentucky, and who filled a large space in the eyes of America and 
Europe. Resting on the solid advantages of his services to his country, his fame 
will survive, when the achievements of men, greatly his superiors in rank and 
intellect, will be forgotten." 

(For an account of the removal of the mortal remains of Boone and his wife from Mis- 
souri to Kentucky, and their re-interment at Frankfort, see Franklin county.) 



BOURBON county was formed in the year 1785, and is one of the 
nine organized by the Virginia legislature before Kentucky be- 
came an independent State. It was named in compliment to the 
Bourbon family of France a prince of that family, then upon 
the throne, having rendered the American colonies most important 
aid, in men and money, in the great struggle for independence. The 
county is bounded north by Harrison, east by Montgomery, south 
by Clarke, and west by Fayette. It lies in the heart of the gar- 
den of Kentucky the surface gently undulating, the soil remar- 
kably rich and productive, based on limestone, with red clay 
foundation. Hemp, corn and wheat are cultivated in the county, 
and grasses, generally, grow in great luxuriance ; but stock ap- 
pears to be the staple article of commerce. Horses, mules, cat- 
tle and hogs, in great numbers, are annually exported. The 
Bourbon cattle are unsurpassed in beauty, or in the fine quality of 
their meat, by any in the United States. 

The taxable property of Bourbon in 1846 was valued at $9,- 
475,752 ; 175,017 acres of land in the county ; average value per 
acre, $33,66 ; number of white males over twenty-one years of 
age, 1,712; number of children between five and sixteen years 
old, 1,470; population in 1830, 18,434 in 1840, 14,478. 

PARIS, the principal town and county seat of Bourbon, is situa- 
ted on the turnpike road from Maysville to Lexington, about 
forty-three miles from Frankfort. It is a neat and pleasant 
town, and is a place of considerable business and importance : 
Containing a handsome court-house, with cupalo and clock, six 
churches Baptist, Reformed, Old School Presbyterian, New 
School Presbyterian, Episcopal, and Methodist, an academy and 
several private schools, a branch of the northern bank of Ken- 
tucky, three taverns, seven dry goods stores, six grocery stores, 
fifteen lawyers, eight physicians, three bagging factories, a large 
flouring, saw and fulling mills, forty or fifty mechanics' shops, 
and about 1,500 inhabitants. Paris contains one newspaper 
office the "Western Citizen^ the oldest newspaper, except the 
Kentucky Gazette, in the State. The establishment is now 
owned by Messrs. Lyle & Walker, but was formerly, for a period 
of more than twenty years, owned by JOEL R. LYLE, Esq., still 
living in the neighborhood of Paris, and who is among the few 
editors of Kentucky who have been able to retire from the press 
with a handsome competency. 

The town was established by the Virginia legislature in 1789, 
under the name of Hopewcll, by which it was known for several 
years. It was also called Bourbonton, after the county in which 
it lies, but finally received its present name from the city of Paris 
in France, in the plenitude of good feeling which then existed 
towards that nation. 





Millersburg is situated on Hinkston,on the Maysville and Lexing- 
ton road, eight miles from Paris and thirty-eight from Maysville: 
Contains five hundred inhabitants, four churches- Methodist, Re- 
formed, Baptist and Presbyterian five stores, four doctors, two 
taverns, one flouring mill, two saw mills, and a number of me- 
chanics' shops. Established in 1817, and named after the owner 
of the land, Mr. Miller. Ccntrcvillc is a small village situated on 
the road from Paris to Georgetown, with sixty inhabitants, one 
tavern, two stores, one wool factory, and several mechanics. 
Clintonville lies nine miles south of Paris, and contains two 
churches, one tavern, two stores, one doctor, and several mechan- 
ics. Jacksonville lies nine miles north west of Paris, with two 
stores, two mechanics, and thirty inhabitants. North Middleton 
is a small town in the east part of Bourbon, ten miles from Pa- 
ris, containing two churches and an academy, three stores, one 
tavern, two doctors, a large number of mechanics, and three hun- 
dred and seventy-five inhabitants. RudddPs Mitts, situated on 
Hinkston creek, seven miles from Paris, contains two churches, 
three stores, one tavern, twelve mechanics' shops, and one hun- 
dred inhabitants. 

The lands in Bourbon are in a high state of cultivation, being 
all enclosed, and the woodland well set in grass. The soil of 
the " Caneridge lands" is of a reddish color, which is supposed 
to be more durable than the black loam, and not so easily af- 
fected either by a dry or wet season. Primitive limestone, with- 
out any apparent organic remains, occurs in this section of the 
county in huge masses. 

The only salt spring in the county is on the farm of Joseph 
Wilson, Esq., in the Caneridge neighborhood. It was formerly 
worked, and is said to be more strongly impregnated than the 

waters of the Blue Licks. Sul- 
phur and chalybeate springs 
are common in the county. 
Lead ore is occasionally found 
in small quantities, as also an 
inferior species of iron ore. 

The line A B, in the annexed draw- 
ing, represents an ancient ditch 
across a narrow neck of land inter- 
cepted in a bend of Stoner, about 
one and a fourth miles below Paris. 
The peninsula thus cut off by the 
ditch, embraces an area of about fifty 
acres. The figures 1 and 2 represent 
mounds of earth. The first is situated 
on the lowest bench of the bottom 
land, and the other is on the top of 
the cliff. The mound in the bottom 
has been opened, and human bones 
were discovered therein. An old 
settler of the county has informed 
me, that a well defined cause- way.. 



or smaller ditch, was perceptible at the period of the first settlement in the 
county, which extended from this ditch one and a half miles west to another 
large mound, on an elevated piece of ground. This latter mound is one of a 
range or chain of mounds, that extend quite across the county, in a north-west by 
west direction, than which, for telegraphic purposes, their position could hardly 
have been better selected by the most skillful engineer. Indeed, it is conjectured 
by some, that beacons were sometimes kindled on their summits, as coals have 
been found just below the surface, and occasionally, human bones, stone hatchets, 
spears, arrow points and a peculiar kind of ware. 

This draft represents an ancient circular fortification with embrasures at the 
cardinal points, near the junction of Stoner's and Hinkston's forks of Licking, 
six miles north of Paris, near to whicli is the village of Ruddell's mills, formerly 
called Ruddell's station. No tradition points to the period when, or by whom 
this entrenchment was made; but being situated upon low ground, subject to 
overflow, there is reason to suppose, that it has been constructed within the last 
hundred and fifty years ; for if it had been formed anterior to this period, all ves- 
tiges of its configuration would have been destroyed by the action of the con- 
fluent waters. 

Three miles further up Hinkston's fork, there is a similar fortification, with the 
addition of two mounds ; one within, and the other without the circle. Stone 
axes, hatchets, chisels, dirks, spear and arrow points of flint, also a hatchet of 
iron, very much corroded with rust, have been found here. 

On all of the principal water courses in the county, Indian graves are to be 
found, sometimes single, but most frequently, several grouped together. Single 
graves are usually indicated by broad flat stones, set in the ground edgewise 
around the skeleton ; but where a number have been deposited together, rude stone 
walls were erected around them, and these having fallen inwards, the rocks re- 
tain a vertical position, sometimes resembling a rough pavement. Many of these 
piles appear to be in various stages of decomposition, according to the lapse of 
time they have been thus exposed to the action of the elements. From the de- 
liberate care that seems to have been bestowed upon their dead, and other indi- 
cations, it is manifest that at no very remote period, the territory of Bourbon 
had a native Indian population. In proof of this, the vestiges of a large Indian 
town are still perceptible near where Pretty-run empties into Strode's creek, on the 
farm of Peter Hedge. The centre of the site is distinguished by three small 
mounds ranged in a line ; and flanked on either side by the remains of double 
rows of lodges or huts; and at the distance of about one hundred rods to the 
eastward, on a bluif of Stoner, was their regular burial ground. At the western 
extremity of the village, on a slight elevation of black earth or mould, the bones 
of almost every species of wild animal are to be found, those of the buffalo, the 
bear and the deer being the most common. 

At a short distance from this, on a similar elevation, is where either the funeral 
pyre or the stake, for the purpose of torturing prisoners was erected, as it is at the 
spot that coals, ashes and calcined human bones have been found ; sad vestiges 
of their cruel orgies. A variety of ornaments, such as bears' tusks and claws with 
holes drilled through them, stone medals, shells, etc.; fragments of vases with 
handles, stone axes, and implements of warfare, have been found in profusion. 
The growth of the timber on the site, and in its immediate vicinity, fixes within 


reasonable certainty the period, when the village ceased to be inhabited. This 
timber is of the same varieties with that of the primitive stock on the hills, with 
this singular difference, that the former invariably grew two or three trees from 
the same roots, and when a portion of them were cut down by the present owner, 
they exhibited the uniform age of ninety years, counting the annulations. The 
current supposition is this, that the original growth was cut down by the inhabi- 
tants of the village, and after they made their exit, that two or three sprouts had 
sprung up from the still living roots, among the ruined wigwams, and thus ex- 
hibiting a cotemporaneous growth at the present day. However this may be, it 
is evident that this aboriginal town had a tragic end. In every direction the 
bones and teeth of its unfortunate inhabitants, corresponding to every age, have 
been discovered just beneath the surface of the soil ; sometimes lying across each 
other within the foundation of their huts, but most numerously in the bottom below 
the site of the town, whither perhaps the tide of battle rolled, and the devoted in- 
habitants met their fate at the hands of some hostile band. 

In excavating a place for a building in this town a few years since, two or 
three large bones were found fifteen feet below the surface, in a fissure between 
two rocks. They were not as large as the bones of the mammoth, but were 
larger than those of any known species of living animal of this continent. 

Five miles below Paris, on Stoner, a cave has been recently discovered, con- 
taining a number of skeletons in a good state of preservation. The crania is of 
Indian conformation, and one of them appears to have been pierced by a rifle ball. 
It is highly probable that these are the relics of some of the hostile Indians that 
were killed in the siege of Hinkston's station, a few miles below, as it is well 
remembered the same band of British and Indians encamped in the vicinity of 
this cave after the reduction of Hinkston's station, while on their march to attack 
Martin's station, which was located on Stoner, about three miles below Paris. 

At a period when there were but few settlers in the county, a band of Indians, 
numbering about twenty, ventured into it, for the purpose of stealing horses. A 
party of a dozen hunters followed their trail, and overtook them on Stoner, a few 
miles above Paris, and fired a volley of rifle balls into their camp, which killed 
one of their number and wounded two or three more. The Indians then fled ; but 
after a short interval, contrary to their usual custom, they came back, and fired in 
turn upon the hunters while they were engaged in securing their stolen horses. 
Both parties then took trees, and the fight was continued obstinately for a long 
time. Finally the ammunition of the whites failed, and being nearly all wounded, 
they were obliged to leave the Indians masters of the field. In this skirmish, 
which was the last that took place in Bourbon, it was supposed the Indians lost 
half their number in killed and wounded. The hunters lost but one killed, (Frank 
Hickman, it is believed was his name), whose skeleton was afterwards identified 
by the initials on his knee buckles. 

In June, 1780, Martin's station, in this county, was captured by a large body 
of Canadians and Indians, under Colonel Byrd, an officer of the British army. 
For the particulars of the expedition, and the capture of RuddelPs and Martin's 
Stations, see Harrison county. 

On the night of the llth of April, 1787, the house of a -widow, named Shanks, 
on Cooper's run, in this county, became the scene of an adventure of thrilling 
interest. She occupied what is generally called a double cabin, in a lonely part 
of the county, one room of which was tenanted by the old lady herself, together 
with two grown sons, and a widowed daughter, at that time suckling an infant, 
while the other was occupied by two unmarried daughters from sixteen to twenty 
years of age, together with a little girl not more than half grown. The hour was 
11 o'clock at night. One of the unmarried daughters was still busily engaged 
at the loom, but the other members of the family, with the exception of one of 
the sons, had retired to rest. Some symptoms of an alarming nature had engaged 
the attention of the young man for an hour before anything of a decided character 
took place. 

The cry of owls was heard in the adjoining wood, answering each other in 
rather an unusual manner. The horses, which were enclosed as usual in a pound 
near the house, were more than commonly excited, and by repeated snorting and 
galloping, announced the presence of some object of terror. The young man was 
often upon the point of awakening his brother, but was as often restrained by the 



fear of incurring ridicule and the reproach of timidity, at that time an unpar- 
donable blemish in the character of a Kentuckian. At length hasty steps were 
heard in the yard, and quickly afterwards, several loud knocks at the door, accom- 
panied by the usual exclamation, "who keeps house?" in very good English. 
The young man, supposing from the language, that some benighted settlers were 
at the door, hastily arose, and was advancing to withdraw the bar which secured 
it, when his mother, who had long lived upon the frontiers, and had probably 
detected the Indian tone in the demand for admission, instantly sprung out of bed, 
and ordered her son not to admit them, declaring that they were Indians. 

She instantly awakened her other son, and the two young men seizing their 
ins, which were always charged, prepared to repel the enemy. The Indians 
nding it impossible to enter under their assumed characters, began to thunder at 
the door with great violence, but a single shot from a loop hole, compelled them 
to shift the attack to some less exposed point ; and, unfortunately, they discovered 
the door of the other cabin, which contained the three daughters. The rifles of 
the brothers could not be brought to bear upon this point, and by means of several 
rails taken from the yard fence, the door was forced from its hinges, and the three 

firls were at the mercy of the savages. One was instantly secured, but the eldest 
efended herself desperately with a knife which she had been using at the loom, 
and stabbed one of the Indians to the heart, before she was tomahawked. 

In the meantime the little girl, who had been overlooked by the enemy in their 
eagerness to secure the others, ran out into the yard, and might have effected her 
escape, had she taken advantage of the darkness and fled, but instead of that the 
terrified little creature ran around the house wringing her hands, and crying out 
that her sisters were killed. The brothers, unable to hear her cries, without 
risking every thing for her rescue, rushed to the door and were preparing to sally 
out to her assistance, when their mother threw herself before them and calmly 
declared that the child must be abandoned to its fate; that the sally would sac- 
rifice the lives of all the rest without the slightest benefit to the little girl. Just 
then the child uttered a loud scream, followed by a few faint moans, and all was 
again silent. Presently the crackling of flames was heard, accompanied by a 
triumphant yell from the Indians, announcing that they had set fire to that division 
of the house which had been occupied by the daughters, and of which they held 
undisputed possession. 

The fire was quickly communicated to the rest of the building, and it became 
necessary to abandon it, or perish in the flames. In the one case there was a 
possibility that some might escape; in the other, their fate would be equally 
certain and terrible. The rapid approach of the flames cut short their momentary 
suspense. The door was thrown open, and the old lady, supported by her eldest 
son, attempted to cross the fence at one point, while her daughter carrying her 
child in her arms, and attended by the younger of the brothers, ran in a different 
direction. The blazing roof shed a light over the yard but little inferior to that 
of day, and the savages were distinctly seen awaiting the approach of their vic- 
tims. The old lady was permitted to reach the stile unmolested, but in the act 
of crossing, received several balls in her breast, and fell dead. Her son, provi- 
dentially, remained unhurt, and by extraordinary agility, effected his escape. 

The other party succeeded also in reaching the fence unhurt, but in the act of 
crossing, were vigorously assailed by several Indians, who throwing down their 
guns, rushed upon them with their tomahawks. The young man defended his 
sister gallantly, firing upon the enemy as they approached, and then wielding the 
butt of his rifle with a fury that drew their whole attention upon himself, and 
gave his sister an opportunity of effecting her escape. He quickly fell, however, 
under the tomahawks of his enemies, and was found at day-light, scalped and 
mangled in a shocking manner. Of the whole family, consisting of eight persons, 
when the attack commenced, only three escaped. Four were killed upon the spot, 
and one (the second daughter) carried off as a prisoner. 

The neighborhood was quickly alarmed, and by daylight about thirty men were 
assembled under the command of Colonel Edwards. A light snow had fallen 
during the latter part of the night, and the Indian trail could be pursued at a gal- 
lop. It led directly into the mountainous country bordering upon Licking, and 
afforded evidences of great hurry and precipitation on the part of the fugitives. 
Unfortunately, a hound had been permitted to accompany the whites, and as the 


trail became fresh and the scent warm, she followed it with eagerness, baying 
loudly and giving- the alarm to the Indians. The consequences of this impru- 
dence were soon displayed. The enemy finding the pursuit keen, and perceiving 
that the strength of ths prisoner began to fail, instantly sunk their tomahawks in 
her head, and left her, still warm and bleeding, upon the snow. 

As the whites came up, she retained strength enough to wave her hands in 
token of recognition, and appeared desirous of giving them some information with 
regard to the enemy, hut her strength was too far gone. Her brother sprung from 
his horse and knelt by her side, endeavoring to stop the effusion of blood, but in 
vain. She gave him her hand, muttered some inarticulate words, and expired 
within two minutes after the arrival of the party. The. pursuit was renewed with 
additional ardor, and in twenty minutes the enemy was within view. They had 
taken possession of a steep narrow ridge, and seemed desirous of magnifying 
their numbers in the eyes of the whites, as they ran rapidly from tree to tree, 
and maintained a steady yell in their most appalling tones. The pursuers, how- 
ever, were too experienced to be deceived by so common an artifice, and being 
satisfied that the number of the enemy must be inferior to their own, they dis- 
mounted, tied their horses, and flanking out in such a manner as to enclose the 
enemy, ascended the ridge as rapidly as was consistent with a due regard to the 
shelter of their persons. 

The firing quickly commenced, and now for the first time they discovered that 
only two Indians were opposed to them. They had voluntarily sacrificed them- 
selves for the safety of the main body, and had succeeded in delaying pursuit 
until their friends could reach the mountains. One of them w r as instantly shot 
dead, and the other was badly wounded, as was evident from the blood upon his 
blanket, as well as that which filled his tracks in the snow for a considerable dis- 
tance. The pursuit was recommenced, and urged keenly until night, when the 
trail entered a running stream and was lost. On the following morning the snow 
had melted, and every trace of the enemy was obliterated. This affair must be 
regarded as highly honorable to the skill, address, and activity of the Indians, 
and the self devolion of the rear guard is a lively instance of that magnanimity 
of which they are at times capable, and which is more remarkable in them, from 
the extreme caution, and tender regard for their own lives, which usually distin- 
guishes their warriors. 

A few weeks after this melancholy affair, a very remarkable incident occurred 
in the same neighborhood. One morning, about sunrise, a young man of wild 
and savage appearance suddenly arose from a cluster of bushes in front of a cabin, 
and hailed the house in a barbarous dialect, which seemed neither exactly Indian 
nor English, but a. collection of shreds and patches, from which the graces of 
both were carefully excluded. His skin had evidently once been white although 
now grievously tanned by constant exposure to the weather. His dress in every 
respect was that of an Indian, as were his gestures, tones, and equipments, and 
his age could not be supposed to exceed twenty years. He talked volubly but 
uncouthly, placed his hand upon bis breast, gestured vehemently, and seemed 
very earnestly bent upon communicating something. He was invited to enter the 
cabin, and the neighbors quickly collected around him. 

He appeared involuntarily to shrink from contact with them ; his eyes rolled 
rapidly around with a distrustful expression from one to the other, and his whole 
manner was that of a wild animal, just caught, and shrinking from the touch of 
its captors. As several present understood the Indian tongue, they at length 
gathered the following circumstances, as accurately as they could be translated, 
out of a language which seemed to be an "omnium gatherum" of all that was 
mongrel, uncouth, and barbarous. He said that he had been taken by the In- 
dians, when a child, but could neither recollect his name, nor the country of his 
birth. That he had been adopted by an Indian warrior, who brought him up with 
his other sons, without making the slightest difference between them, and that 
under his father's roof he had lived happily until within the last month. 

A few weeks before that time, his father, accompanied by himself and a younger 
brother, had hunted for some time upon the waters of the Miami, about forty 
miles from the spot where Cincinnati now stands, and after all their meat, skins, 
&c., had been properly secured, the old man determined to gratify his children by 
taking them upon a war expedition to Kentucky. They accordingly built a bark 


canoe, in which they crossed the Ohio near the mouth of Licking, and having 
buried it, so as to secure it from the action of the sun, they advanced into the 
country and encamped at the distance of fifteen miles from the river. Here their 
father was alarmed by hearing an owl cry in a peculiar tone, which he declared 
boded death or captivity to themselves, if they continued their expedition; and 
announced his intention of returning without delay to the river. 

Both of his sons vehemently opposed this resolution, and at length prevailed 
upon the old man to disregard the owl's warning, and conduct them, as he had 
promised, against the frontiers of Kentucky. The party then composed them- 
selves to sleep, but were quickly awakened by their father, who had again been 
warned in a dream that death awaited them in Kentucky, and again besought 
his children to release him from his promise, and lose no time in returning home. 
Again they prevailed upon him to disregard the warning, and persevere in the 
inarch. He consented to gratify them, but declared he would not remain a mo- 
ment longer in the camp which they now occupied, and accordingly they left it 
immediately, and marched on through the night, directing their course towards 
Bourbon county. 

In the evening they approached a house, that which he had hailed, and in which 
he was now speaking. .Suddenly, the desire of rejoining his people occupied his 
mind so strongly as to exclude every other idea, and seizing the first favorable 
opportunity, he had concealed himself in the bushes, and neglected to reply to all 
the signals which had been concerted for the purpose of collecting their party 
when scattered. This account appeared so extraordinary, and the young man's 
appearance was so wild and suspicious, that many of the neighbors suspected 
him of treachery, and thought that he should be arrested as a spy. Others op- 
posed this resolution, and gave full credit to his narrative. In order to satisfy 
themselves, however, they insisted upon his instantly conducting them to the spot 
where the canoe had been buried. To this the young man objected most vehe- 
mently, declaring, that although he had deserted his father and brother, yet he 
would not betray them. 

These feelings were too delicate to meet with much sympathy from the rude 
borderers who surrounded him, and he was given to understand that nothing short 
of conducting them to the point of ernbarcation, would be accepted as an evi- 
dence of his sincerity. With obvious reluctance he at length complied. From 
twenty to thirty men were quickly assembled, mounted upon good horses, and 
under the guidance of the deserter, they moved rapidly towards the mouth of 
Licking. On the road, the young man informed them that he would first conduct 
them to the spot where they had encamped when the scream of the owl alarmed 
his father, and where an iron kettle had been left concealed in a hollow tree. He 
was probably induced to do this from the hope of delaying the pursuit so long as 
to afford his friends an opportunity of crossing the river in safety. 

But if such was his intention, no measure could have been more unfortunate. 
The whites approached the encampment in deep silence, and quickly perceived two 
Indians, an old man and a boy, seated by a fire, and busily employed in cooking 
some venison. The deserter became much agitated at the sight of them, and so 
earnestly implored his countrymen not to kill them, that it was agreed to 
surround the encampment, and endeavor to secure them as prisoners. This 
was accordingly attempted, but so desperate was the resistance of the Indians, 
and so determined were their efforts to escape, that the whites were compelled to 
fire upon them, and the old man fell mortally wounded, while the boy, by an in- 
credible display of address and activity, was enabled to escape. The deserter 
beheld his father fall, and throwing himself from his horse, he ran up to the spot 
where the old man lay, bleeding but still sensible, and falling upon his body, be- 
sought his forgiveness for being the unwilling cause of his death, and wept bitterly. 

His father evidently recognized him, and gave him his hand, but almost in- 
stantly afterwards expired. The white men now called upon him to conduct 
them at a gallop to the spot where the canoe was buried, expecting to reach it 
before the Indian boy, and intercept him. The deserter in vain implored them to 
compassionate his feelings. He urged that he had already sufficiently demon- 
strated the truth of his former assertions, at the expense of his father's life, and 
earnestly entreated them to permit his younger brother to escape. His compan- 
ions, however, were inexorable. Nothing but the blood of the young Indian 



would satisfy them, and the deserter was again compelled to act as a guide. 
Within two hours they reached the designated spot. The canoe was still there, 
and no track could be seen upon the sand, so that it was evident that their victim 
had not yet arrived. 

Hastily dismounting, they tied their horses and concealed themselves within 
close rifle shot of the canoe. Within ten minutes after their arrival, the Indian 
appeared in sight, walking swiftly towards them. He went straight to the spot 
where the canoe had been buried, and was in the act of digging it up, when he 
received a dozen balls through his body, and leaping high into the air, fell dead 
upon the sand. He was instantly scalped and buried where he fell, without 
having seen his brother, and probably without having known the treachery by 
which he and his father had lost their lives. The deserter remained but a short 
time in Bourbon, and never regained his tranquility of mind. He shortly after- 
wards disappeared, but whether to seek his relations in Virginia or Pennsylvania, 
or whether disgusted by the ferocity of the whites, he returned to the Indians, 
has never yet been known. He was never heard of afterwards.* 

We copy the " Muster roll of a troop of volunteer state dragoons, for twelve 
months, under command of Captain William Garrard, of Major James V. Ball's 
squadron, in the service of the United States from date of the last muster (Octo- 
ber 31, 1812), to the 31st December, 1812, inclusive," with the remarks appended 
to each name. The roll is certified as correct, and the remarks as "accurate 
and just," by the officers. The roll will awaken old reminiscences, and will be 
examined by many of our readers with great interest. 


William Garrard, Captain, frost bitten. 
Edmund Basye, 1st Lieut, do. and wounded. 
David M. Hickman, 2d do., wounded. 
Thus. H. McClanahan, Cornet, frost bitten. 
Chas. S.Clarkson,lst Serg't, sick on furlough. 

William Barton, 2d 
John Clark, 3d 



do., died Nov. 15, 1812. 

Benj. W. Edwards,4th do., Serg't Major. 

James Benson, 1st Corporal, sick on furlough. 

Wm. Walton, 2nd 
Jesse Todd, 3d 
Jno. S. Bristow, 4th 

do., frost bitten, 
do., sick, absent, 
do., frost bitten. 

Joseph McConnell, Farrier, wounded Dec. 18. 
Ephraim Wilson, Trumpeter, frost bitten. 
William Daviss, Saddler, 
signed Nov. 20. 



John Finch, frost bitten, appointed Sergeant. 

William Beneer, present fit for duty. 

David B. Langhorn, frost bitten. 

John Wynne, sick, absent. 

William Mountjoy, frost bitten. 

Samuel Henderson, do. 

Henry Wilson, wounded Dec. 18th, 1812. 

William Jones, sick on furlough. 

John Ten-ill, frost bitten. 

Walter Woodyard, do. 

Moses Richardson, do., wounded 18th Dec. 

Jacob Shy, frost bitten. 

Lewis Duncan, sick on furlough. 

Robert Thomas, frost bitten. 

Jacob Counts, absent on furlough. 

John Snoody, frost bitten. 

Thomas Bedford, killed in action 18th Dec. 

James Finch, frost bitten and sick. 

Walker Thornton, present fit for duty. 

Thomas Eastin, wounded on the 18th Dec. 

Gerrard Robinson, sick on furlough. 

William M. Baylor, frost bitten. 

Alexander Scott, do. 

William Scott, do., wounded Dec. 18. 

James Clark do., sick. 

Roger P. West, burnt by the explosion of 


Frederick Loring, frost bitten. 
Thomas Barton, do. 

Samuel J. Caldwell, frost bitten and sick. 

John Baseman, do. 

Jesse Bowlden, do. 

John Funston, do. 

James Johnston, do. 

John Layson, do. 

Will. B. Northcutt, do. 

Jonathan Clinkenbeard, do. 

Thomas Webster, wounded on the 18th Dec. 

Abel C. Pepper, frost bitten and sick. 

Beverly Brown, killed in action 18th Dec. 

Edward Waller, fit for duty. 

Gustavus E. Edwards, wounded, frost bitten. 

Stephen Barton, do. do. 

Stephen Bedford, do. 

John M. Robinson, do. 

Jacob Sharrer, sick on furlough. 

Isaac Sanders, rejoined 26th November. 

James Brown, frost bitten. 

Henry Towles, sick on furlough. 

John Metcalfe, frost bitten. 

Stephen Owen, do. 

James Conn, sick on furlough. 

Jacob Thomas, frost bitten. 

William Allentharp, not yet joined the troop. 

Nathaniel Hill, do. 

Strother J. Hawkins, wounded, frost bitten. 

Edward McGuire, sick on furlough. 

Troy Waugh, servant, frost bitten. 

* Sketches of Western Adventure. 


The number of horses marked as killed, on the roll, is eight, and eight as 

This county was the residence of Governor JAMES GARRARD, whose biograph- 
ical sketch will be found under the head of Garrard county. The monument to 
his memory, erected by the state of Kentucky, contains the following inscription : 

" This marble consecrates the spot on which repose the mortal remains of Colonel JAMES 
GARRAHW, and records a brief memorial of his virtues and his worth. He was born in the 
county of Stafford, in the colony of Virginia, on the 14th day of January, 1749. On at- 
tainining the age of manhood, he participated with the patriots of the day in the dangers 
and privations incident to the glorious and successful contest which terminated in the inde- 
pendence and happiness of our country. Endeared to his family, to his friends, and to society, 
by the practice of the social virtues of Husband, Father, Friend and Neighbor; honored by 
his country, by frequent calls to represent her dearest interests in her Legislative Councils ; 
and finally by two elections, to fill the chair of the Chief Magistrate of the State, a trust 
of the highest confidence and deepest interest to a free community of virtuous men, pro- 
fessing equal rights, and governed by equal laws ; a trust which, for eight successive years, 
he fulfilled with that energy, vigor, and impartiality which, tempered with Christian spirit of 
God-like mercy and charity for the frailty of men, is best calculated to perpetuate the ines- 
timable blessings of Government and the happiness of Man. An administration which re- 
ceived its best reward below, the approbation of an enlightened and grateful country, by whose 
voice, expressed by a resolution of its general assembly in December, 1822, THIS MONU- 
MENT of departed worth and grateful sense of public service, was erected, and is inscribed. 
He departed this life on the 1 9th day of January, 1822, as he had lived, a sincere and pious 
Christian, firm, constant and sincere in his own religious sentiments, tolerant for those who 
differed from him ; reposing in the mercy of God, and the merits of his Redeemer, his 
hopes of a glorious and happy Immortality." 

This county has been the nursery of many prominent, and some very distin- 
guished men, particularly at the bar and on the bench. It was the residence of 
Judge Robert Trimble, of the supreme court of the United States, (see Trimble 
county) of Judge Mills, of the court of appeals of Kentucky and of Judge 
Bledsoe, who was remarkable for his forensic powers. Captain William and 
General James Garrard, were active soldiers in the war of 1812 both frequent 
representatives in the legislature, and the former for many years clerk of the 
Bourbon county court. Several distinguished pioneer divines were also residents 
of this county, who are noticed under proper heads. 

The Honorable Thomas Corwin, the able and eloquent senator of Ohio, and 
the Rev. John P. Durbin, D. D., late president of Dickinson college, and one of 
the most eloquent divines in the United States, are both natives of Bourbon 

Colonel James Smith, whose interesting narrative of his captivity in western 
Pennsylvania and residence among the Indians, was published many years since, 
and transferred, in an abridged form, to the " Sketches of Western Adventure, " 
settled in Bourbon, seven miles above Paris, in 1788. Having been prominent 
in his native State, as an Indian fighter, a member of the Pennsylvania conven- 
tion, and a member of her legislature, his public and private worth became spee- 
dily known in Bourbon; and in the first year of his residence, he was elected a 
member of the convention, that sat at Danville, to confer about a separation from 
the State of Virginia. From that period until 1799, with an intermission of two 
years only, according to his narrative, he continued to represent Bourbon county, 
either in convention or as a member of the general assembly. A few extracts 
from the narrative of Colonel Smith are subjoined. 

On the second evening succeeding his capture, (in the year 1755), Colonel 
Smith arrived with his captors at fort Du Quesne, now Pittsburgh. When 
within half a mile of the fort, they raised the scalp halloo, and fired their guns. 
The garrison was instantly in commotion, the cannon were fired, the drums were 
beaten, and the French and Indians ran out in great numbers to meet the party 
and partake of their triumph. Smith was instantly surrounded by a multitude 
of savages, painted in various colors, and shouting with delight. They rapidly 
formed in two long lines, and brandishing their hatchets, ramrods, switches, etc., 
called aloud upon him to run the GAUNTLET. 

" Never having heard of this Indian ceremony before, he stood amazed for some time, not 


knowing what to do ; one of his captors explained to him, that he was to run between the 
two lines, and receive a blow from each Indian as he passed, concluding his explanation by 
exhorting him to " run his best," as the faster he run the sooner the aii'air would be over. 
This truth was very plain ; and young Smith entered upon his race with great spirit. He 
was switched very handsomely along the lines, for about three-fourths of the distance, the 
stripes only acting as a spur to greater exertions, and lie had almost reached the opposite ex- 
tremity of the line, when a tall chief struck him a furious blow with a club upon the back 
of the head, and instantly felled him to the ground. Recovering himself in a moment, he 
sprung to his feet and started forward again, when a handful of sand was thrown in his 
eyes, which, in addition to the great pain, completely blinded him. He still attempted to 
grope his way through ; but was again knocked down and beaten with merciless severity. 
He soon became insensible under such barbarous treatment, and recollected nothing more, 
until he found himself in the hospital of the fort, under the hands of a French surgeon, bea- 
ten to a jelly, and unable to move a limb. Here he was quickly visited by one of his cap- 
tors, the same who had given him such good advice, when about to commence his race. He 
now inquired, with some interest, if he felt " very sore." Young Smith replied, that he 
had been bruised almost to death, and asked what he had done to merit such barbarity. The 
Indian replied that he had done nothing, but that it was the customary greeting of the In- 
dians to their prisoners ; that it was something like the English " how d'ye do !" and that 
now all ceremony would be laid aside, and he would be treated with kindness." 

Smith was still a captive and at fort Du Quesne, when General Braddock 
was defeated, the same year, and nearly the whole of his army cut down, or 
dragged into captivity, and reserved for a more painful death. 

" About sunset, [on the day of battle] he heard at a distance the well known scalp halloo, 
followed by wild, quick, joyful shrieks, and accompanied by long continued firing. This 
too surely announced the fate of the day. About dusk, the party returned to the fort, driving 
before them twelve British regulars, stripped naked and with their faces painted black ! an 
evidence that the unhappy wretches were devoted to death. Next came the Indians dis- 
playing their bloody scalps, of which they had immense numbers, and dressed in the scarlet 
coats, sashes, and military hats of the officers and soldiers. Behind all came a train of bag- 
gage horses, laden with piles of scalps, canteens, and all the accoutrements of British sol- 
diers. The savages appeared frantic with joy, and when Smith beheld them entering the 
fort, dancing, yelling, brandishing their red tomahawks, and waving their scalps in the air, 
while the great guns of the fort replied to the incessant discharge of rifles without, he says, 
that it looked as if h 11 had given a holiday, and turned loose its inhabitants upon the 
upper world. The most melancholy spectacle was the band of prisoners. They appeared 
dejected and anxious. Poor fellows ! They had but a few months before left London, at 
the command of their superiors, and we may easily imagine their feelings, at the strange 
and dreadful spectacle around them. The yells of delight and congratulation were scarcely 
over, when those of vengeance began. The devoted prisoners British regulars were led 
out from the fort to the banks of the Alleghany, and to the eternal disgrace of the French 
commandant were there burnt to death, one after another, with the most awful tortures. 
Smith stood upon the battlements and witnessed the shocking spectacle. The prisoner was 
tied to a stake with his hands raised above his head, stripped naked, and surrounded by In- 
dians. They would touch him with red hot irons, and stick his body full of pine splinters 
and set them on fire, drowning the shrieks of the victim in the yells of delight with which 
tli3y danced around him. His companions in the meantime stood in a group near the stake, 
and had a foretaste of what was in reserve for each of them. As fast as one prisoner died 
under his tortures, another filled his place, until the whole perished. All this took place so 
near the fort, that every scream of the victims must have rung in the ears of the French 
commandant !" 

Colonel Smith has an article in his pamphlet on the manners and customs of 
the Indians, their traditions and religious sentiments, their police or civil govern- 
ment, ect. The following extracts must suffice: 

" Their traditions are vague, whimsical, romantic, and many of them scarce worth relat- 
ing ; and not any of them reach back to the creation of the world. They tell of a squaw 
that was found when an infant, in the water, in a canoe made of bull-rushes ; this squaw 
became a great prophetess and did many wonderful things ; she turned water into dry land, 
and at length made this continent, which was, at that time, only a very small island, and 
but a few Indians in it. Though they were then but few, they had not sufficient room to 
hunt; therefore this squaw went to the water side, and prayed that this little island might be 
enlarged. The great Being then heard her prayer, and sent great numbers of water tortoises 
and muskrats, which brought with them mud and other materials, for enlarging this island, 
and by this means, they say, it was increased to the size that it now remains ; therefore, 


they say, that the white people ought not to encroach upon them, or take their land from 
them, because their great grand-mother made it. They say that, about this time, the angels 
or the heavenly inhabitants, as they call them, frequently visited them and talked with their 
forefathers ; and gave directions how to pray, and how to appease the great Being when he 
was offended They told them they were to oiler sacrifice, burnt tobacco, buffalo and deer 
bones ; but that they were not to burn bear or raccoon bones in sacrifice. 

" The Indians, generally, are of opinion that there are a great number of inferior Deities, 
which they call Can-eyagaroona, which signifies the Heavenly inhabitants. These beings, 
they suppose, are employed as assistants in managing the affairs of the universe, and in in- 
specting the actions of men : and that even the irrational animals are engaged in viewing 
their actions, and bearing intelligence to the gods. The eagle, for this purpose, with her 
keen eye, perched on the trees around their camp in the night ; therefore, when they observe 
the eagle or the owl near, they immediately offer sacrifice, or burn tobacco, that they may 
have a good report to carry to the gods. They say that there are also great numbers 
of evil spirits, which they call Onamhwona, which signifies the inhabitants of the Lower 
Region. These spirits are always going after them, and setting things right, so that they are 
constantly working in opposition to each other. Some talk of a future state, but not with 
any certainty : at best, their notions are vague and unsettled. Others deny a future state al- 
together, and say that after death they neither think nor live. 

" I have often heard of Indian kings, but never saw any. How any term used by In- 
dians in their own tongue, for the chief man of a nation, could be rendered king, I know 
not. The chief of a nation is neither the supreme ruler, monarch or potentate : He can 
neither make war or peace, league or treaties : He cannot impress soldiers or dispose of 
magazines: He cannot adjourn, prorogue or dissolve a general assembly, nor can he refuse 
his assent to their conclusions, or in any manner control them. With them, there is no 
such thing as hereditary succession, title of nobility or royal blood, even talked of. The 
chief of a nation, even with the consent of his assembly, or council, cannot raise one shilling 
of tax off the citizens, but only receive what they please to give as free and voluntary dona- 
tions. The chief of a nation has to hunt for his living, as any other citizen." 

BENJAMIN MILLS was born in the county of Worcester, on the eastern shore 
of Maryland, January 12th, 1779. While he was quite young, his family emi- 
grated to the vicinity of Washington, Pennsylvania, where he obtained his edu- 
cation, and engaged in the study of medicine. While yet a youth, he was called 
to the presidency of Washington Academy, an institution which was soon after 
erected into Washington College, and which has sent from its walls a number 
of prominent public men. Having removed with his father to Bourbon county, 
Kentucky, and relinquished the study of medicine for that of the law, in 1805 or 
'06, he commenced in Paris the practice of the latter profession. His abilities 
and diligence soon ensured him, in his own and the adjacent counties, an extern 
sive practice. For several years he was elected to represent the county of Bour- 
bon in the legislature, and in 1816 failed of an election to the senate of the 
United States, in competition with Isham Talbot, Esq., by only three votes. In 
1817, to relieve himself from an oppressive and injurious practice of the law, he 
accepted the appointment of judge in the Montgomery circuit. In the succeed- 
ing year, by the unanimous request of the Fayette bar, he was transferred to that 
circuit. In 1820, he was elevated to a seat on the bench of the court of appeals, 
which he filled with great firmness, through a period of extraordinary excitement 
with reference to the judiciary of the State, till he retired in 1828. Having re- 
signed this post, he removed from Paris to Frankfort, to engage again in the 
practice of the law in the higher courts of the State. Success commensurate 
with his wishes again crowned his labors, till the morning of the 6th of Decem- 
ber, 1831, when, by an apoplectic stroke, his mortal existence was terminated. 

As a man, Judge Mills was never remarkably popular. Though kind arid 
faithful in every relation of life, he aimed, by a course of firm and inflexible in- 
tegrity, rather to command the approbation than to win the affections of his fellow 
men. He was, to a very great exent, a self-made man, and affords a fine ex- 
ample of the ennobling tendency of republican institutions, and an encouragement 
to all meritorious young men who are struggling in obscurity and poverty. 

As a practitioner of the law, by a profound and thorough knowledge of its 
principles, and the most approved forms of practice, he soon rose to eminence. 
As a public speaker, he was clear, logical and forcible ; but not possessing a line 
voice, and seldom using the ornaments of rhetoric, he was less admired as an 
orator than many others. 


As a legislator, he was zealous and active in the promotion of wise, and the 
resistance of injudicious measures. Some of the most valuable provisions of the 
statutes of the state, had their origin in his conceptions. His efforts on the exci- 
ting new election question in 1816, will be remembered by those familiar with 
the politics of that day, as having a great influence in settling a construction of 
the constitution, which, in several instances since, has been acquiesced in with 
happy effects by the people of the state. 

As a circuit judge, he conducted the business of the courts with uncommon 
industry and energy. The promptness and general accuracy of his decisions, and 
the perfect impartiality of his administration of justice, gained for him the respect 
of the orderly portion of the community. 

While on the bench of the court of appeals, his official acts tended not only 
to enlighten, but to enlarge the sphere of his profession, and to establish a sys- 
tem of legal polity alike favorable to the country and honorable to himself. His 
written opinions furnish abundant proofs of the clearness of his perceptions, the 
depth of his legal researches, the strength of his memory, his power of analysis, 
and the steadiness and sternness of his integrity. 

For the last twelve years of his life, he was a member of the Presbyterian 
church, and for a considerable portion of that time a ruling elder. His life, during 
this period, was in a high degree consistent with his profession ; and the extent 
of his charities in the support of all the great benevolent enterprises of the day, 
was surprising to those who knew how limited were his means. 

JESSE BLEDSOE was born on the 6th of April, 1776, in Culpepper county, Vir- 
ginia. His father, Joseph Bledsoe, was a Baptist preacher. His mother's maiden 
name was Elizabeth Miller. In early life, Judge Bledsoe's health was delicate, 
and from weakness in his eyes, could not be sent regularly to school. When his 
health and sight were restored, which was not until he had become quite a large 
boy, (having emigrated with an elder brother to the neighborhood of Lexington, 
Kentucky), he went to Transylvania seminary, and by the force of talent and 
assiduous industry, became a fine scholar. Few men were better or riper clas- 
sical scholars ; and to the day of his death it was his pleasure and delight to 
read the Grecian orators and poets in their original tongue. After finishing his 
collegiate course, he studied law, and commenced its practice with success and 

Judge Bledsoe was repeatedly elected to the house of representatives of the 
Kentucky legislature, from the counties of Fayette and Bourbon ; and was also 
a senator from the latter county. He was secretary of state, of Kentucky, under 
Gov. Charles Scott; and during the war with Great Britain, was elected a sen- 
ator in the congress of the United States from the state of Kentucky, for an 
unexpired term, serving in that capacity for two or three years. In 1822, he was 
appointed by Gov. Adair, a circuit judge in the Lexington district, and removed 
to Lexington, where he received the appointment of professor of law in the Tran- 
sylvania University. He held the offices of judge and professor for five or six 
years, when he resigned both, and again commenced the practice of law. 

In 1833, he removed to Mississippi, and in the fall of 1835 or spring of 1836, 
he emigrated to Texas, and commenced gathering materials for a history of the 
new republic. In May, 1836, he was taken sick in that portion of Texas near 
the line of the United States, and not far from Nacogdoches, where he died. 

At an early age, he married the eldest daughter of Colonel Nathaniel Gist, and 
his widow is still living in Frankfort. 

Judge Bledsoe possessed a strong and powerful intellect, and was surpassed 
in popular and forensic eloquence by but few men of his day. 

JOHN ALLEN was born in James City county, Va., in 1749. When the revolu- 
tonary war broke out, he joined the American army, and devoted all his energies 
to the service of his country. He rose to the rank of major, and acted for some 
time as commissary of subsistence. At a tea party in Charleston, South Caro- 
lina, which was attended by British and American officers, the conduct of the 
former towards the latter became very insulting; and an officer named Davis 
repeated the insult so frequently as to provoke Major Allen to strike him with 
his sword, which instantly broke up the party. In the course of the war, Major 
Allen was taken prisoner by the same officer, (Davis), and what was most re- 


markable in the history of the times, was treated by him with special kind- 

In 1781, Major Allen married Miss Jane Tandy, of Albermarle county, Vir- 
ginia, and engaged in the practice of the law, having studied his profession with 
Colonel George Nicholas, then of Charlottesville. He emigrated to Kentucky 
in 1786, in company with Judge Sebastian, and located in Fayette county. In 
1788, he removed to Bourbon, and settled in Paris, then containing but a few log 
cabins the ground upon which the town is now reared being "then a marsh, 
springs of water bursting from the earth in great profusion. After the organization 
of the State government, Major Allen was elected one of the commissioners to 
select a site for the permanent seat of government. During the first term of Gov. 
Garrard, under the old constitution, Major Allen was appointed judge of the Paris 
district court, the duties of which he discharged with general acceptance. In 
1802, after the adoption of the present constitution, and during the second term 
of Gov. Garrard, he was appointed judge of the circuit court, including in his 
district the county of Bourbon. 

Judge Allen died in the year 1816, having devoted a large portion of his long 
life to the service of his country, and leaving behind him a name which will be 
held in grateful remembrance by his posterity. He had born to him twelve chil- 
dren nine sons and three daughters. His widow still survives, and resides in 
Paris, being now four score years of age, and enjoying a degree of health which 
rarely falls to the lot of one of her years. 


BOYLE county was formed from parts of Mercer and Lincoln in 
1841, and named for the Hon. John Boyle, for many years chief 
justice of the state. It is bounded on the north by Mercer, east 
by Garrard, south by Casey and Lincoln, and west by Marion. 
Danville, the county seat, is forty miles from Frankfort. The 
soil of this county is very deep and rich, and generally lies well 
for cultivation. The products are principally stock and hemp. 
The citizens are generally independent in their circumstances 
well educated and intelligent. Number of acres of land in the 
county, 147,045 ; average value per acre, $12,22 ; taxable prop- 
erty in 1846, $3,852,123 ; number of white males over twenty- 
one years of age, 1,119 ; number of children between the ages of 
five and sixteen years, 1,372. The county was organized since 
the census of 1840 was taken. 

The towns of Boyle are Danville and Perryville. DANVILLE is 
situated three miles west from Dick's river, forty miles south by 
west from Frankfort, and thirty -five miles from Lexington lati- 
tude thirty-seven degrees thirty minutes north. It ' contains a 
new and capacious court-house and other public buildings, six 
churches Presbyterian, Methodist, Baptist, Reformed or Chris- 
tian, Episcopal and African, a branch bank of the Bank of Ken- 
tucky, twelve dry goods stores, one book and drug store, two ho- 
tels, ten physicians, nine lawyers, one weekly newspaper, (the 
Kentucky Tribune), several mills and factories, and about forty 
mechanics' shops and manufacturing establishments. Centre 
College, the Deaf and Dumb Asylum, and a fine Female Semi- 
nary, are also situated in Danville. Danville was established by 



the Virginia legislature in 1787, and was for many years the 
seat of government of Kentucky. The first court-house and jail 
built in Kentucky was erected here, and here the first constitu- 
tion of the state was formed ; but owing to some freak of for- 
tune, the seat of government was moved to Lexington in 1792, 
where it enjoyed but a brief sojourn, and was removed from 
thence to Frankfort. The town was laid out by Mr. Walker 
Daniel, who gave it its name. Population about 2,000. PERRY- 
VILLE is a small village twelve miles west of Danville contains 
one Presbyterian church and one Cumberland Presbyterian 
church, seven physicians, two taverns, five stores, one wool fac- 
tory, and eight mechanical trades. Established in 1817. 

The Deaf and Dumb Asylum located at Danville was chartered in 1822, and 
went into operation the spring following. The plan of instruction pursued in 
this institution is based upon the system invented and successfully used by the 
Abbe Sicard, of Paris, in France, with such improvements as experience has 
pointed out. The average number of pupils is about thirty. Two instructors 
attend them all the time. The other officers of the institution are a physician, 
superintendent and matron, in whose family all the pupils reside and receive their 
constant attention. The terms of admission are $105 per year for board and tui- 
tion to those who can afford to pay; but ample provision has been made by the 
state for those who are in indigent circumstances, which fact must be certified to 
by a magistrate in the county where they reside. Persons in comfortable cir- 
cumstances at home, but unable to educate their children without ruinous sacrifi- 
ces, receive the public assistance, in part or in whole, as may be necessary. The 
buildings consist of two substantial plain brick houses, which are ample and 
comfortable, situated in a retired part of the town, with a superintendent who is 
eminently qualified to discharge the duties of his station. The number of pupils 
in the \nstitution from January 1, 1846, to January 1, 1847, was fifty-three, and 
provis -n is made by law for the support of forty indigent pupils. 



CENTRE COLLEGE is located in Danville, a pleasant town near the centre of the 
state, with a very intellectual and intelligent population. The college was char- 
tered by the legislature of Kentucky in 1819. Jeremiah Chamberlain, D. D., 
the first president, went into office in 1823. In 1824, the board of trustees, ac- 
cording to an arrangement with the Presbyterian synod of Kentucky, procured 
an act of the legislature modifying its charter so as to secure to the synod, on 
its payment of twenty thousand dollars to the funds of the institution, the right 
of appointing the board of trustees. This condition having, in 1830, been com- 
pletely fulfilled on the part of the synod, all the members of the board have 
since that period been appointed by the synod, as their terms of office, from time 
to time, have expired. One third of the board are appointed each year. 

Dr. Chamberlain resigned his office in 182G, and the Rev. Gideon Blackburn, 
D. D., succeeded him in 1827, the office having, in the meantime, been tempora- 
rily filled by the Rev. David C. Proctor. On the resignation of Dr. Blackburn in 
1830, JOHN C. YOUNG, D. D., the present president, was elected. 

The number of students varied in the earlier period of the existence of the 
institution, from fifty to one hundred and ten, and a very large proportion of those 
in attendance were pursuing only a partial and irregular course. In 1830, the 
number of students had been reduced to 33 of all classes, including those in the 
grammar school, as well as those in the college proper. Since that period, the 
number has been, with slight temporary variations, steadily, but slowly increasing, 
until it has ranged, during the last three years, from one hundred and sixty-five 
to one hundred and eighty-five. The number of those pursuing a full course, has 
increased in a much greater ratio. The graduating classes, formerly very small, 
have been steadily enlarging. The graduates of the first twelve years amounted 
to 55. This number the last ten years has enlarged to 224. About 1200 students 
have been connected with the institution, nearly all of whom have received all 
their higher education from its instructions. 

The synod determined to raise $100,000 as a permanent endowment. Funds 
have been already contributed, by the liberality of various individuals, which, as 
vested by the board, yield an annual income of about $3,000. Of this amount, 
twelve thousand dollars were given by Mr. Samuel Laird, of Fayette county, to 
endow a professorship. Measures have been adopted which, it is hoped, will 
secure the full amount contemplated by the synod. 

The course of instruction varies but slightly from that pursued by those colleges 
which have the oldest and most established reputation. An equal amount of the 
ancient languages and mathematics is taught. In the natural sciences, the want 
of equal facilities for illustration and experiment renders the course somewhat less 
complete than theirs; while, on the other hand, in the moral and mental sciences, 
it is somewhat more extensive. 

The moral and religious culture of the youth under their care, has been always 
regarded by the officers of the college, as their most important object. Their aim 
is not to inculcate the peculiarities of any religious sect, but to fix in the minds 
and hearts of their pupils those great and controlling truths of revelation, which 
influence the happiness, and shape the character of men for time and eternity ; 
and while no parent of any other religious denomination has ever had his son 
proselyted here, many have rejoiced to find him return, at the close of his college 
course, deeply impressed with those religious principles which give strength and 
consolation to man in the duties and trials of life. The college has been remark- 
able for many years, for the moral and religious habits of its students, and for the 
rare occurrence of such disorders as are frequent in many institutions. 

The tuition fee is thirty dollars per session of ten months. The ordinary 
charges in town, for board, washing, lodging, fuel and lights, vary from two dol- 
lars to two dollars and fifty cents per week ; and in the country, at from one to 
two miles distant, from one dollar and twenty-five cents to two dollars per week. 
Young men pursuing their studies with a view to the ministry, and receiving aid 
from any society, pay only ten dollars per annum for tuition. 

In the libraries connected with the college, there are between five thousand and 
six thousand volumes, and among them, some rare and valuable works. The 
course of study embraces the customary period of four years ; and instruction is 
given in all the branches of learning usually taught in the colleges of the country. 

There is but one term during the year, with a short vacation in the spring. 


Commencement on the third Thursday in July. The session begins on the third 
Thursday in September. 

Among the early settlers of Danville, was a young man, named Tom Johnson, 
possessed of a good education and some genius, and withal a poet. He became, 
however, an inveterate drunkard, his intemperance hurrying him to a premature 
grave. On one occasion, when Tom's poetical inspirations were quickened by 
his devotions at the shrine of Bacchus, he came into Gill's tavern to procure his 
dinner ; but too many hearty eaters had been in advance of him at the table, and 
Tom found nothing but bones and crumbs. He surveyed the table for some 
minutes quite philosophically, and then offered up the following prayer : 

" ! Thou who blest the loaves and fishes, 
Look down upon these empty dishes ; 
And that same power that did them fill, 
Bless each of us, but d n old Gill." 

A man in the neighborhood, bearing the Christian name of John, had become 
largely indebted to the merchants and others of Danville, and like many of the 
present day, left for parts unknown. Tom consoled the sufferers by the following 
impromptu effusion : 

* John ran so long and ran so fast, 
No wonder he ran out at last; 
He ran in debt, and then to pay, 
He distanc'd all, and ran away." 

WALKER DANIEL, a young lawyer from Virginia, came to Boyle, then Lincoln, 
in 1781, and entered upon the practice of his profession. His only competitor 
at that period, was Christopher Greenup, afterwards governor of the State. Mr. 
Daniel was the original proprietor of the town of Danville, and succeeded in lay- 
ing the foundation of an extensive fortune. He was killed by the Indians in 
August, 1784, after the short residence of three years. From an old pioneer of 
Mercer, we learn that Mr. Daniel was a young gentleman of rare talents, and 
gave promise of great distinction. 

JOHN BOYLE, for more than sixteen years chief justice of Kentucky, was born 
of humble parentage, October 28, 1774, in Virginia, at a place called "Castle 
Woods," on Clinch river, in the then county of Bottetourt, near Russell orTaze- 
well. His father emigrated, in the year 1779, to Whitley's station in Kentucky, 
whence he afterwards moved to a small estate in the county of Garrard, where he 
spent the remainder of his days. 

Young Boyle's early education, notwithstanding the limited means of obtaining 
scholastic instruction, was good, and his knowledge of what he learned thorough. 
In the rudiments of the Greek and Latin languages, and of the most useful of 
the sciences, the Rev. Samuel Finley, a pious Presbyterian minister of Madison 
county, was his instructor. Energetic and ambitious, Mr. Boyle readily settled 
upon the law as the calling most congenial to his feelings, and most certain and 
gratifying in its rewards. He studied under the direction of Thomas Davis, of 
Mercer county, then a member of congress, and whom he succeeded as the repre- 
sentative of the district. 

In the year 1797, just after he had entered upon his professional career, he 
married Elizabeth Tilford, the daughter of a plain, pious, and frugal farmer, and 
moved to the town of Lancaster. In the following year, upon an out-lot of the 
town, which he had purchased, he built a small log house, with only two rooms, 
in which not only himself, but three other gentlemen who successively followed 
him as a national representative, and one of whom succeeded him in the chief justice- 
ship, and another served a constitutional term in the gubernatorial chair of Kentucky , 
began the sober business of conjugal life. Here the duties of his profession 
engrossed his attention until 1802, when he was elected, without opposition, to 
the house of representatives of the United States. 

As a member of congress, Mr. Boyle was vigilant, dignified, and useful, com- 
manding at once the respect and confidence of the JefFersonian, the then domin- 
ant party, with which he acted, and the hearty approbation of a liberal constitu- 
ency. He was twice re-elected without competition, and refused a fourth canvass, 
because a political life was less congenial to his taste, than the practice of his 

_M*9 At 


profession amid the sweets of his early home. The same feeling compelled him 
to decline more than one federal appointment, tendered him by President Jefferson. 
President Madison, among his earliest official acts, appointed him the first gov- 
ernor of Illinois, a position doubly alluring, and which Mr. Boyle conditionally 
accepted. On his return to Kentucky, he was tendered a circuit judgeship, and 
afterwards a seat upon the bench of the court of appeals. The latter he accepted, 
and entered upon its onerous and responsible duties on the 4th of April, 1809. 
Ninian Edwards, then chief justice of the court, solicited and obtained the relin- 
quished governorship. 

On the 3d of April, 1810, Judge Boyle was promoted to the chief justiceship, 
which he continued to hold until the 8th of November, 1826. The decisions of 
the court, while he was upon the bench, are comprised in fifteen volumes of the 
State Reports, from 1st Bibb to 3d Monroe, and are marked with firmness and 

Chief Justice Boyle was the head of the " Old Court" of appeals, during the 
intensely exciting contest of three years duration, between the "Relief" or 
" New Court," and the "Anti-Relief" or "Old Court" parties. The notes of 
"The Bank of the Commonwealth," issued upon a deficient capital, were ne- 
cessarily quite fluctuating in value at one time depreciating more than fifty per 
cent. A serious revulsion in the monetary interests of the State, opened the way 
for a system of popular legislation, designed to satisfy temporarily the cry for re- 
lief. The two years replevin law prolonging from three months to two years 
the right of replevying judgments and decrees on contracts, unless the creditor 
would accept Commonwealth bank money at par was the crowning project of 
the system. The court of appeals unanimously decided the statute unconstitu- 
tional, so far as it was designed to be retroactive a step that brought upon them 
the full torrent of popular abuse and indignation. The relief party carried the 
day at the election soon after, (1823), and on the meeting of the legislature, an 
address was voted by less than two-thirds, as the constitution required, to re- 
move by address calling upon the governor to remove the appellate judges, and 
setting forth their decision as unauthorised, ruinous and absurd. This bold effort 
at intimidation failing in its end, at the succeeding session the majority, grown 
more determined as the echo of the popular will became louder, "re-organized" 
the court of appeals, or abolished the court established by the constitution, and 
instituted a new court, for which purpose commissions were issued to other per- 
sons. Matters now reached a crisis, and Kentucky was required either to take 
her stand by the broad fundamental law which had so powerfully contributed to 
her progress, or to yield to the inconstant, unreasonable and selfish clamor that 
rang hoarsely through the State. The struggle was, as it were, for the life of 
the State involving the stability of a constitutional government, and the effi- 
ciency and independence of an enlightened judiciary. In August, 1826, the appeal 
to the ballot box decided the contest. The " Old Court" party triumphed, and 
confidence was gradually restored in the ability, integrity and purity of Chief 
Justice Boyle and his associates. 

In the November following, the earliest day at which it could be done consis- 
tently with his determination to ride out the judicial storm the memorable deci- 
sion of the court, had brewed, Boyle resigned the chief justiceship of Kentucky. 
But his services upon the bench were too highly appreciated to be dispensed with. 
The federal government, anticipating his resignation, tendered him the office of 
district judge of Kentucky, which he accepted, and was induced to hold, although 
his better judgment prompted him to give it up, until his death, which occurred 
on the 28th day of January, 1835. His estimable lady preceded him a year and 
a half, having fallen a victim to that scourge of the nations, the cholera, in 1833. 

The appointment of associate justice of the supreme court of the United States 
was twice within his reach ; but he loved retirement, and distrusted his qualifi- 
cations for a position so responsible. Upon the death of Judge Todd, he refused 
to be recommended as his successor; and, subsequently, expressed the same un- 
willingness upon the demise of Judge Trimble, of the same court. 

For one year, in the latter part of his life, he was sole professor in the Tran- 
sylvania law school. Numbers of young men followed him to the quiet of his 
home, where his pleasures were divided between teaching law, miscellaneov 
reading, and the cares of his family and farm. 



His dying ejaculation " / have lived for my country' 1 ' 1 is the best eulogium 
that could be written upon his life and public services. In all the relations of 
father, friend, representative and judge, his conduct and conversation marked him 
as a man, tender and sympathising, generous and disinterested, faithful and vigi- 
lant, deliberative and incorruptible. 


BRACKEN county was formed in 1796, lies in the northern part 
of the state, on the Ohio river, and bounded as follows : North by 
the Ohio river, east by Mason, west by Pendleton, south-west by 
Harrison, and south-east by Nicholas. Brooksville is the county 
seat Augusta the principal town and landing place or depot. 
The lands of the county are high, and the surface rolling and 
hilly, such as usually border on the Ohio river, the south-west 
resting upon the Licking river. The upper part, bordering on 
Mason, is rich and fertile. The staples are tobacco, wheat, corn 
and pork. The finest "Mason county tobacco" is raised in Bracken ; 
the wheat crops are good, and the land, when new, produces 
good corn. 

Number of acres of land in Bracken 124,844 ; taxable property 
in 1846, $1,750,242 ; average value of land per acre, $7,99 ; num- 
ber of white males over twenty-one years of age, 1,421 ; number 
of children between five and sixteen years old, 1,675. Popula- 
tion in 1830, 6,392 in 1840, 7,053. 

AUGUSTA lies on the Ohio river, six miles below the Mason line, 
and immediately below the mouth of Bracken creek. The town 
includes three hundred acres of land, and is one of the most 
beautiful situations on the Ohio river, with a fine harbor. It is 
eighteen miles below Maysville, and forty-five miles above Cin- 
cinnati has three lawyers, four physicians, and contains three 
brick churches, (Methodist, Presbyterian and Baptist), the town 
hall, a large brick building fifty feet square, the spacious and el- 
egant edifice of the Augusta college, large steam saw and mer- 
chant mills, an extensive tannery, ten stores and groceries, one 
book and drug store, three tobacco warehouses, a large number 
of mechanics' shops, and 1,200 inhabitants. A letter from Gen. 
JOHN PAYNE, who has resided many years in Augusta, and who 
was an active, brave, and efficient officer under Harrison at the 
Mississinaway towns, and on the north-west frontier during the 
last war with Great Britain, gives the following interesting ac- 
count of the ancient remains discovered in that place : 

The bottom on which Augusta is situated, is a large burying ground of the ancients. 
A post hole cannot be dug without turning up human bones. They have been found in 
great numbers, and of all sizes, every where between the mouths of Bracken and Locust 
creeks, a distance of about a mile and a half. From the cellar under my dwelling, sixty by 
seventy feet, one hundred and ten skeletons were taken. I numbered them by the skulls ; 
and there might have been many more, whose skulls had crumbled into dust. My garden 
was a cemetery ; it is full of bones, and the richest ground I ever saw. The skeletons were 
of all sizes, from seven feet to the infant. David Kilgour (who was a tall and very large 


man) passed our village at the time I was excavating my cellar, and we took him down and 
applied a thigh bone to his the owner, if well proportioned, must have been some ten or 
twe've inches taller than Kilgour, and the lower jaw bone would slip on over his, skin and 
all. Who were they ? How came their bones there ? Among the Indians there is no tra- 
dition that any town was located near here, or that any battle was ever fought near here. 
When I was in the army, I inquired of old Crane, a Wyandott, and of Anderson, a Dela- 
ware, both intelligent old chiefs, (the former died at camp Seneca in 1813,) and they could 
give no information in reference to these remains of antiquity. They knew the localities at 
the mouths of Locust, Turtle and Bracken creeks, but they knew nothing of any town or 
village near there. In my garden, Indian arrow heads of flint have been found, and an 
earthen ware of clay and pounded muscle. Some of the largest trees of the forest were 
growing over these remains when the land was cleared in 1792. 

Augusta College, one of the best literary institutions of the west, is located 
here. It is under the patronage of the Methodist Episcopal church, and was the 
first college ever established by that denomination in the world. The college 
was founded in 1822 has six professorships, and a preparatory and primary 
school attached to it. The number of students varies from one hundred to one 
hundred and fifty. The library contains 2,500 volumes. Commencement on 
Thursday after the first Wednesday in August. Rev. Joseph S. Tomlinson, 
D. D. President. 

BROOKSVILLE, the seat of justice, is nine miles from Augusta, and 
about sixty-five miles from Frankfort contains a commodious 
brick court-house and other public buildings ; three taverns, three 
stores, three lawyers, two physicians, and four mechanics' shops. 
Population about seventy-five. Named after David Brooks. Pow- 
ersville, is a small village, three miles south of Brooksville, con- 
taining but few inhabitants. Germantown, a handsome village, 
lies on the line between Mason and Bracken, the greatest portion 
in Bracken. 

The soil of Bracken is based on yellow clay, with limestone foundation. Tim- 
ber, in some parts, sugar tree, buckeye, black walnut and hickory; in others, 
white and black oak. Gold has been found in the county, and it is believed by 
some of the most intelligent citizens that, upon a strict examination, by competent 
persons, this precious metal might be found in great abundance. 

This county derived its name from two creeks : Big and Little 
Bracken, and these creeks were called for an old hunter, named 
Bracken, who settled on the banks of one of them, and is supposed 
to have been killed by the Indians at an early period of the settle- 
ment of Kentucky. 


BREATHITT county was formed in 1839, and called after the late 
Governor Breathitt. It is situated in the eastern part of the State, 
on the head waters of the Kentucky river ; and is bounded on 
the north by Morgan county ; east by Floyd ; south by Perry, and 
west by Owsley. Jackson is the county seat and only town. The 
surface is hilly, interspersed with rich and productive vallies the 
soil based on red clay, with sandstone foundation. The county 
abounds in bituminous coal, large quantities of which are sent to 
market annually, down the Kentucky river. Iron ore is also found 
.in abundance ; and salt is manufactured to some extent. The 


principal articles of export are coal, timber, beeswax and ginseng. 
Taxable property of the county in 1846, $323,479. Number of 
acres of land in Breathitt 162,121 ; number of white males over 
twenty-one years, 528 ; number of children between the ages of 
five and sixteen years, 868. Population in 1840, 2,195. 

JACKSON, the county seat, received its name in honor of the late 
president Jackson. It contains the county buildings, one Metho- 
dist church, one Reformed church, two schools, five stores and 
groceries, two taverns, three lawyers, one doctor and five me- 
chanical trades. Population, 150. 

JOHN BREATHITT, late governor of Kentucky, (for whom this county was called) 
was a native of the state of Virginia. He was the eldest child of William 
Breathitt, and was born on the ninth-day of September, 1786, about two miles 
from New London, near the road leading to Lynchburg. His father removed from 
Virginia, and settled in Logan county, Kentucky, in the year 1800, where he 
raised a family of five sons and four daughters. The old gentleman was a farmer, 
possessed of a few servants and a tract of land, but not sufficiently wealthy to 
give his children collegiate educations. The schools of his neighborhood (for it 
should be remembered the Green river country was a wilderness in 1800), afforded 
but few opportunities for the advancement of pupils. John, the subject of this 
notice, made the best use of the means for improvement placed within his reach, 
and by diligent attention to his books, made himself a good surveyor. Before he 
arrived at age, he received an appointment as deputy surveyor of the public lands, 
and in that capacity, surveyed many townships in the state of Illinois, then a 
territory of the United States. 

John Breathitt taught a country school in early life, and by his industry and 
economy, as teacher and surveyor, he acquired property rapidly, consisting mostly 
in lands, which were easily obtained under the acts of the assembly appropriating 
the public domain. After his earnings had secured a capital capable of sustaining 
him a few years, he resolved to read law, which he did under the direction of the 
late Judge Wallace. He was admitted to the bar as a qualified attorney, in Feb- 
ruary, 1810. His industry and capacity for business, soon secured him a lucrative 
practice ; and from this time he rapidly advanced in public estimation. 

In 1810 or '11, he was elected to represent the county of Logan in the house 
of representatives of the general assembly, and filled the sfcme office for several 
years in succession. In 1828, he was elected lieutenant governor of the 
commonwealth, the duties of which station he filled with great dignity and 
propriety. In 1832, he was elected governor, but did not live to the end of his 
official term. He died in the governor's house, in Frankfort, on the 21st of 
February, 1834. 

It is not the design of the writer to notice the political principles, official acts, 
and measures of policy recommended or executed by Governor Breathitt. These 
may be found among the archives and records of the country, and their considera- 
tion here would swell this article to the magnitude of a lengthy work. It may 
not, however, be improper to say, that Governor Breathitt acted with the demo- 
cratic party, and espoused with warmth the election of General Jackson to the 
presidency in 1828 and 1832. 

Governor Breathitt had two wives, both of whom he survived. The first was 
Miss Whitaker, daughter of William Whitaker of Logan county; and the second 
was Miss Susan M. Harris, daughter of Richard Harris, of Chesterfield county, 
Virginia. By his first wife he left a son and daughter, and by his last a daughter. 

Governor Breathitt, in all his transactions, was considerate and cautious. 
Rashness was no part of his character. He was nevertheless, firm, and pursued 
his objects with great assiduity, after resolving upon the course he intended to 
pursue. He did not commit himself in favor of any measure, without beforehand 
weighing the consequences with much deliberation. 

As a husband, father, friend and neighbor, it is not too much to say that Gov- 
ernor Breathitt had no superior. In all the relations of life, he was actuated by 


a spirit of indulgence and benevolence. The comfort and happiness of others, 
with him were objects of pre-eminent solicitude. His affection and kindness to 
his relations, manifested itself in an eminent degree, by the assistance he gave 
his father, and the liberal expenditures he made in educating his brothers and 
sisters. To associates of his profession, he was uniformly courteous, and ever 
ready to give the younger members of the bar aid and instruction. 


THE county of BRECKINRIDGE was formed in the year 1799, and 
was named in honor of the Hon. John Breckinridge. It is situa- 
ted in the western-middle part of the State, and bounded on the 
north by the Ohio river, on the east by Hardin, on the south by 
Grayson, and on the west by Hancock county. 

The face of the country is generally rolling, high, dry, and 
finely watered. The climate is pleasant and healthy; the soil 
fertile, with a basis of red clay and limestone. The principal 
water courses are,- Sinking creek, the North Fork of Rough creek, 
main Rough creek, and Clover creek. 

The principal products of the county are tobacco, corn, wheat, 
and oats. Four thousand five hundred hogsheads of tobacco are 
annually raised and exported. The total wealth of the county in 
1846, according to the auditor's report, was $1,933,364. Number 
of acres of land, 309,926. The population in 1830 was 7,345 
in 1840 it was 8,944; showing an increase of population in ten 
years of 1,599. 

The principal towns are Hardinsburg, Cloverport, Stephens- 
port, Hudsonvilley Constantine, and Jackeysburg. 

Hardinsburg is the seat of justice, and was named in honor of 
Captain William Hardin, a distinguished Indian fighter. It was 
laid out in town lots in 1782 ; incorporated in 1800, and contains 
a population of eight hundred inhabitants. 

Cl&verport is the second town in the county ; it is a place of 
considerable importance as a shipping point, and contains a pop- 
ulation of seven hundred inhabitants. Its immediate neighbor- 
hood abounds in extensive banks of coal of fine quality. Four 
miles from Cloverport are the Breckinridge, Tar, and White Sul- 
phur Springs, which are becoming one of the most fashionable 
watering places in the .State. 

Stephensport is a neat and handsome village, of some commer- 
cial importance, situated on the Ohio river, at the mouth of Sink- 
ing creek. It contains a population of two hundred inhabitants, 
and was incorporated in 1825. The remaining towns are Hud- 
sonsville, Constantine, and Jackeysburg. 

Breckinridge county possesses a very remarkable curiosity, in 
Sinking creek, a considerable stream, which supplies a sufficiency 
of water to drive machinery during the entire year. Six or seven 


miles from its source, the creek suddenly sinks beneath the earth, 
showing no trace of its existence for five or six miles, when it 
re-appears above ground, and flows into the Ohio. On this creek 
is to be seen a natural rock mill-dam, eight feet high, and forty 
feet wide, which answers all the purposes of a dam to a mill 
which has been erected at the place by a Mr. Huston. Near the 
creek is a large cave, called Penitentiary cave, which has never 
been fully explored. Some of the apartments are said to rival, 
in the splendor and magnificence of their scenery, the celebrated 
Mammoth cave in Edmonson county. In one of the rooms, about 
one hundred yards from the mouth of the cave, the roof is from 
sixty to seventy feet high, and on the floor there are three natural 
basins or troughs of cool, clear water, of very remarkable con- 
struction and appearance, fifteen feet in length, four feet wide, 
and twelve inches deep. These basins are elevated above the 
level of the floor in the form of troughs, and it is remarkable that 
the stone which forms the sides and ends of the basins, do not 
exceed in thickness the blade of a table knife. 

One of the earliest settlers in that portion of Kentucky which now forms the 
county of Breckinridge, was Capt. WILLIAM HARDIN, a noted hunter and Indian 
fighter a man of dauntless courage and resolution cool, calm, and self-pos- 
sessed in the midst of most appalling dangers, and perfectly skilled in all the 
wiles and arts of border warfare. Soon after Capt. Hardin had erected a station 
in what is now the county of Breckinridge, intelligence was received that the 
Indians were building a town on Saline creek, in the present state of Illinois. 
Hardin, not well pleased that the savages should establish themselves in such 
close vicinity to his little settlement, determined to dislodge them. He soon had 
collected around him a force of eighty select men ; the hardiest and boldest of 
those noted hunters whose lives were passed in a continual round of perilous ad- 

When this force reached the vicinity of the lick, they discovered Indian signs, 
and approaching the town cautiously, they found it in the possession of three war- 
riors who had been left to guard .the camp. Hardin ordered his men to fire on 
them, which they did, killing two. The third attempted to make his escape, 
but he was shot down as he ran. He succeeded, however, in regaining his feet, 
and ran fifty yards, leaped up a perpendicular bank, six feet high, and fell dead. 

In the mean time, Hardin, correctly supposing that the main body of the In- 
dians were out on a hunting expedition, and would shortly return, made immedi- 
ate preparation for battle. He accordingly selected a place where a few acres of 
timbered land were surrounded on all sides by the prairie. Here he posted his men 
with orders to conceal themselves behind the trees, and reserve their fire until the 
Indians should approach within twenty-five yards. Soon after the little band had 
taken their position, they discovered the Indians rapidly approaching on their trail, 
and numbering apparently between eighty and one hundred men. When the sav- 
ages had arrived within one hundred yards of the position of the Kentuckians, 
one of the men, in his impatience to begin the battle, forgot the order of the cap- 
tain, and fired his gun. Immediately the Indians charged, and the fight com- 
menced in earnest. 

At the first fire, Captain Hardin was shot through the thighs. Without, how- 
ever, resigning his command, or yielding to the pain of his wound, he sat down 
on a large log, and during the whole action, continued to encourage his men and 
give forth his orders, with as much coolness, promptitude, and self-possession, as 
if engaged in the most ordinary avocation. This more than Spartan firmness and 
resolution, was not, however, anything very remarkable in the early history of 
Kentucky. Every battle field furnished many examples of similar heroism. The 
iron men of those times, seem, indeed, to have been born insensible to fear, and 
impregnable to pain. The coolness, courage, and unyielding determination of 


Hardin, in this trying situation, no doubt contributed greatly to the success of the 
day ; and after a severe contest, in which some thirty of the savages fell, they 
were finally repulsed. The loss of the whites, in killed and wounded, was very 
considerable. During the action the parties were frequently engaged hand to 

This battle was never reported to the government, and it seems to have es- 
caped the notice of the historians of early times in Kentucky ; though it was, 
unquestionably, one of the most fiercely contested battles ever fought in the west. 

The Honorable JOHN BRECKINRIDGE, [for whom this county was named], was 
the second son of Colonel Robert Breckinridge, of Augusta county, Virginia, 
and was born on a farm, upon a part of which the town of Staunton now stands, 
on the 3d day of December, 1760. His paternal ancestors were what were then 
called " Scotch Irish," that is, they were Presbyterians from the north of Ire 
land, immediately but originally from Scotland. After the restoration of 
Charles II., they were hotly persecuted in Ayreshire, their original seat, and 
being driven out from thence, spent half a century in the highlands of Breadal- 
bane, and removed thence to Ireland, and early in the last century to Virginia; 
a portion of the persecuted remnant of the Scotch Covenanters, who suffered 
so long and so heroically for liberty and the reformed religion. His paternal 
and maternal grand fathers both lie buried in the grave yard of the Tinkling 
Springs congregation, in the county of Augusta, of which both of them were 
ruling elders. His mother, Lettice Preston, was the oldest child of John Pres- 
ton and Elizabeth Patton, and was the second wife of his father. General 
James Breckinridge, of Virginia, was his younger, and a full brother ; General 
Robert Breckinridge, of Kentucky, was his elder, and a half brother. 

At a very early age, he was carried by his father to the neighborhood of 
Fincastle, in Bottetourt county, Virginia, whither he removed, and where he 
died, when his son was about eleven years of age ; leaving a widow, and seven 
children, in circumstances which we should now consider narrow : and exposed, 
upon what was then almost the extreme limit of the white settlements, to all the 
dangers of an Indian frontier ; and this only a few years before the commence- 
ment of our long and bloody struggle for National Independence, which was 
ended about the time the subject of this notice arrived at man's estate. 

Raised in the midst of dangers, hardships, and privations ; the tradition of his 
family replete only with tales of suffering and exile, for conscience sake ; and a 
widowed mother and orphan family of which he became the head at the age of 
early boyhood the objects of his constant care ; it is by no means strange that 
his powerful character and uncommon talents, should have been early and re- 
markably developed. A calm, simple, correct man gentle to those he loved 
stern and open to those he could not trust always true, always brave, always 
self dependent, it is just in such a way, that such circumstances would mould 
and develop such a nature as his. But it is not so easy to ascertain how it was, 
that in his circumstances, there should have been implanted in him, from earliest 
childhood, a thirst for knowledge that seemed to the end of his life, insatiable ; 
nor could anything less than the highest mental endowments, directed with 
energy that never flagged, explain the extent, the variety, and the richness of 
the acquisitions which he was enabled to make. His education, both preparatory 
and professional, was privately conducted, and so far as is now known, chiefly 
without other aid than books, except about two years, which he spent at the col- 
lege of William and Mary, in Virginia. During the latter part of his attendance 
at this ancient seat of learning, and when he was about nineteen years of age, he 
was elected to the Virginia house of burgesses, from the county of Bottetourt, 
without his having even suspected that such a matter was in agitation. On ac- 
count of his youth, the election was twice set aside, and it was only on the third 
return, and against his own wishes and remonstrances, that he took his seat. 
From this time to the period of his death, he lived constantly, as a lawyer and a 
statesman, in the public eye. 

In the year 1785 he married Mary Hopkins Cabell, a daughter of Colonel 
Joseph Cabell, of Buckingham county, Virginia; and settled in the county of 
Albemarle, and practised law in that region of Virginia, until the year 1793, in 
the spring of which he removed to Kentucky, and settled in Lexington ; near to 


which place, at " Cabell's Dale," in the county of Fayette, he resided till the 
period of his death, which occurred on the 14th December, 1806, when he had 
just completed his 46th year. 

As a lawyer, no man of his day excelled him, and very few could be compared 
with him. Profoundly acquainted with his profession, highly gifted as a public 
speaker, laborious and exact in the performance of all his professional duties and 
engagements these great qualities, united to his exalted private character, gave 
him a position at the bar, which few men ever attained, or ever deserved; and 
enabled him, besides the great distinction he acquired, to accumulate a large for- 
tune. An event extremely characteristic attended the disposition of his estate : 
for on his death bed, he absolutely refused to make a will, saying that he had 
done his best to have such provisions made by law for the distribution of estates, 
as seemed to him wise and just, and he would adhere to it for his own family. 
At the end of forty years, it is not unworthy to be recorded, that his wisdom and 
foresight, in this remarkable transaction, did not lose their reward. 

As a statesman, very few men of his' generation occupied a more commanding 
position, or mingled more controllingly with all the great questions of the day ; 
and not one enjoyed a more absolute popularity, or maintained a more spotless 
reputation. He took a leading, perhaps a decisive part in all the great questions 
of a local character that agitated Kentucky, from 1793 to 1806, and whose settle- 
ment still exerts a controlling influence upon the character of her people and in- 
stitutions. The constitution of 1798-99, which is still preserved unaltered, was 
more the work of his hands than of any one single man. The question of negro 
slavery, as settled in that constitution, upon a middle and moderate ground, the 
ground which Kentucky still occupies the systematizing, to some extent, the 
civil and criminal codes the simplification of the land law the law of 
descents the penitentiary system the abolition of the punishment of death, 
except for wilful murder and treason all these, and many other important sub- 
jects, of a kindred nature, fell under his moulding labors at the forming period of 
the commonwealth, and remain still nearly as they were adjusted half a century 
ago. In those vital questions that involved the destiny of the whole west, and 
threatened the plan if not the continuance of the Union itself, no man took an 
earlier or more decided stand. It is capable of proof, that the free navigation of 
the Mississippi river, and subsequently the purchase of Louisiana (which latter 
act, though it covered Mr. Jefferson with glory, he hesitated to perform, upon 
doubts both as to its policy and constitutionality), were literally forced upon the 
general government by demonstrations from the west, in which the mind and the 
hand of this great patriot and far-sighted statesman were conspicuous above all. 

As a statesman, however, he is best known as one of the leading men perhaps 
in the west, the undoubted leader of the old democratic party ; which came into 
power with Mr. Jefferson, as president, under whose administration he was made 
attorney general of the United States. He was an ardent friend, personal and 
political, of Mr. Jefferson ; he coincided with him upon the great principles of the 
old democracy ; he concerted with him and Mr. Madison, and others of kindred 
views, the movements which brought the democratic party into power; he sup- 
ported the interests of that party with pre-eminent ability, in the legislature of 
Kentucky, and in the senate of the United States ; and died as much beloved, 
honored and trusted by it, as any man he left behind. Some twenty years after 
his death, it began to be whispered, and then to be intimated in a few news- 
papers, that the Kentucky resolutions of 1798-9, which he offered, and which 
was the first great movement against the alien and sedition laws and the general 
principles of the party that passed them, were in fact the production of Mr. Jef- 
ferson himself, and not of John Breckinridge ; and it is painful to reflect that Mr. 
Jefferson did certainly connive at this mean calumny upon the memory of his 
friend. The family of Mr. Breckinridge have constantly asserted that their father 
was the sole and true author of these resolutions, and constantly defied the pro- 
duction of proof to the contrary : and there seems to be no question that they are 

In stature, John Breckinridge was above the middle size of men ; tall, slender 
and muscular ; a man of great power and noble appearance. He had very clear 
gray eyes, and brown hair, inclining to a slight shade of red. He was extremely 


grave and silent in his ordinary intercourse ; a man singularly courteous and 
gentle, and very tenderly loved by those who knew him. His family consisted 
of nine children : two of them only, with his venerable widow, still live ; but his 
descendants are numerous, both of his own and other names. 


BULLITT county was established in 1796, and named for Lieuten- 
ant Governor BULLITT. It is situated in the north-west middle 
part of the state, its extreme western boundary extending to near 
the mouth of Salt river, and is watered by that stream and its 
tributaries. Bounded on the north by Jefferson ; east by Spencer; 
south by Nelson, and on the west by Hardin and Meade, the 
Rolling fork of Salt river washing its south-west border. This 
county is generally fertile, though the surface is rolling; the 
scenery is variegated and beautiful, the hills covered with tall 
pine and laurel, and abounding in iron and other ores, and salt 
and mineral waters. The valuation of taxable property in 1846, 
$1,801,972; number of acres in the county, 162,004;* average 
value per acre, $5,56 ; number of white males over twenty-one 
years of age, 1,206; children between five and sixteen years of 
age, 1,313. Hogs, cattle and sheep, are the principal articles of 
commerce ; a great number of the former being driven to Louis- 
ville annually. There are in the county, three woolen factories, 
four steam merchant mills, a number of blast iron furnaces, and 
a rolling mill and forges, making superior iron and nails. 

The towns in Bullitt, are, Shepherdsville, Mount Washington 
and Pittstown. Shepherdsville, the county seat, is situated on Salt 
river, seventy-four miles from Frankfort contains one Methodist 
church, (a handsome brick building, appropriated to the use of 
Bullitt academy,) four stores, two groceries, five doctors, seven 
lawyers, three taverns and twenty mechanics' shops. Incorpo- 
rated in 1793. Population about four hundred. Mount Wash- 
ington, formerly Vernon, a beautiful town, incorporated in 1822, 
contains three churches, two schools, six stores and groceries, five 
doctors, one lawyer, two taverns, and twelve mechanical trades. 
Population about seven hundred. Pittstown is a small village, 
situated at the junction of the Rolling fork and main Salt river, 
nine miles from Shepherdsville. 

The Paroquet Springs, a fine and popular watering place the 
grounds beautifully improved, with rooms sufficient for the accom- 
modation of six hundred persons is situated half a mile above 
Shepherdsville, in this county. The water contains salt, iron, 
magnesia and salts. Bullitt's old licks, where the first salt works 
were erected in Kentucky, lie about three miles from Shepherds- 

The first forts and stations erected in the county, were called Fort Nonsense, 
Mud Garrison, Breashear's Station, Clear's Station and Whitaker's Station; 
which were severally the scenes of a number of conflicts with the Indians, who 


Tesorted to the licks to hunt the game, and make salt. Near Bullitt's lick, on a 
high knob, which is called u Cahill's knob," the Indians whipped to death an old 
man whom they caught while chopping wood for the salt works. 

HENRY CRIST was born in the state of Virginia, in the year 1764. During the 
revolutionary war, his father, with a numerous family, emigrated to the western 
part of Pennsylvania, from whence young Henry and other ardent youths of the 
neighborhood, made frequent and daring excursions into the western wilderness; 
sometimes into what is now the state of Ohio, sometimes to Limestone, (now 
Maysville,) and finally to the falls of the Ohio, which place he first visited in 1779. 
The buffalo and deer had clearly indicated to the early settlers, those places where 
salt water was to be found. The great difficulty of importing salt, the increasing 
demand and high price of the article, encouraged the attempt to manufacture here 
at a very early day. Salt was made at Bullitt's lick, now in Bullitt county, near 
seventy years ago. 

In Grist's excursions to the west, he had become acquainted and associated with 
an enterprising Dutchman, named Myer,s, a land agent and general locator, and in 
whose name more land has been entered than in that of almost any other man in 
the west. This pursuit of locator of lands, brought Crist at a very early day to 
Bullitt's lick, where he took a prominent and active part in some of those scenes 
which have contributed to the notoriety of that renowned resort of all who lived 
within fifty miles around in the first settlement of the country. Here the first salt 
was made in Kentucky, and here from five hundred to a thousand men were col- 
lected together in the various branches of salt making, as well as buying of, sell- 
ing to, and guarding the salt makers, when Louisville and Lexington could boast 
but a few hovels, and when the buffalo slept in security around the base of Cap- 
itol hill. 

In May, 1778, a flat boat loaded with kettles, intended for the manufacture of 
salt at Bullitt's lick, left Louisville with thirteen persons, twelve armed men and 
one woman, on board. The beat and cargo were owned by Henry Crist and Sol- 
omon Spears; and the company consisted of Crist, Spears, Christian Crepps, 
Thomas Floyd, Joseph Boyce, Evans Moore, an Irishman named Fossett, and five 
others, and a woman, whose names the writer cannot now recollect, though he 
has heard Crist often repeat them. The intention of the party was to descend the 
Ohio, which was then very high, to the mouth of Salt river, and then ascend the 
latter river, the current of which was entirely deadened by back water from the 
Ohio, to a place near the licks, called Mud Garrison, which was a temporary for- 
tification, constructed of two rows of slight stockades, and the space between 
filled with mud and gravel from the bank of the river hard by. The works enclosed 
a space of about half an acre, and stood about midway between Bullitt's lick 
and the falls of Salt river, where Shepherdsville now stands. These works were 
then occupied by the families of the salt makers, and those who hunted to supply 
them with food, and acted also as an advanced guard to give notice of the approach 
of any considerable body of men. 

On the 25th of May, the boat entered Salt river, and the hands commenced 
working her up with sweep-oars. There was no current one way or the other 
while in the Ohio, the great breadth of the river secured them against any sud- 
den attack, but when they came into Salt river, they were within reach of the 
Indian rifle from either shore. It became necessary, therefore, to send out scouts, 
to apprise them of any danger ahead. In the evening of the first day of their as- 
cent of the river, Crist and Floyd went ashore to reconnoitre the bank of the river 
ahead of the boat. Late in the evening they discovered a fresh trail, but for 
want of light, they could not make out the number of Indians. They remained 
out all night, but made no further discoveries. In the morning, as they were re- 
turning down the river towards the boat, they heard a number of guns, which 
they believed to be Indians killing game for breakfast. They hastened back to 
the boat and communicated what they had heard and seen. 

They pulled on up the river until about eight o'clock, and arrived at a point 
eight miles below the mouth of the Rolling fork, where they drew into shore on 
the north side of the river, now in Bullitt county, intending to land and cook and 
eat their breakfast. As they drew into shore, they heard the gobbling of turkeys 
(as they supposed) on the bank where they were going to land, and as the boat 
touched, Fossett and another sprang ashore, with their guns in their hands, to 


shoot turkeys. They were cautioned of their danger, but disregarding the admo- 
nition, hastily ascended the bank. Their companions in the boat had barely lost 
sight of them, when they heard a volley of rifles discharged all at once on the 
bank immediately above, succeeded by a yell of savages so terrific as to induce 
a belief that the woods were filled with Indians. This attack, so sudden and vi- 
olent, took the boat's company by surprise ; and they had barely time to seize 
their rifles and place themselves in a posture of defence, when Fossett and his 
companion came dashing down the bank, hotly pursued by a large body of Indi- 
ans. Crist stood in the bow of the boat, with his rifle in his hand. At the first 
sight of the enemy, he brought his gun to his face, but instantly perceived that 
the object of his aim was a white man, and a sudden thought flashed across his 
mind, that the enemy was a company of surveyors that he knew to be then in 
the woods, and that the attack was made in sport, &c., let his gun down, and 
at the same time his white foernan sunk out of his sight behind the bank. But 
the firing had begun in good earnest on both sides. Crist again brought his rifle 
to his face, and as he did so the white man's head was rising over the bank, with 
his gun also drawn up and presented. Crist got the fire on him, and at the crack 
of his rifle the white man fell forward dead. Fossett's hunting companion plun- 
ged into the water, and got in safely at the bow of the boat. But Fossett's arm 
was broken by the first fire on the hill. The boat, owing to the high water, did 
not touch the land, and he got into the river further toward the stern, and swam 
round with his gun in his left hand, and was taken safely into the stern. So in- 
tent were the Indians on the pursuit of their prey, that many of them ran to the 
water's edge, struck and shot at Fossett and his companion while they were get- 
ting into the boat, and some even seized the boat and attempted to draw it nearer 
the shore. In this attempt many of the Indians perished ; some were shot dead 
as they approached the boat, others were killed in the river, and it required the 
most stubborn resistance and determined valor to keep them from carrying the 
boat by assault. Repulsed in their efforts to board the boat, the savages with 
drew higher up the bank, and taking their stations behind trees, commenced 
a regular and galling fire, which was returned with the spirit of brave men ren- 
dered desperate by the certain knowledge that no quarter would be given, and 
that it was an issue of victory or death to every soul on board. 

The boat had a log-chain for a cable, and when she was first brought ashore, 
the chain was thrown round a small tree that stood in the water's edge, and the 
hook run through one of the links. This had been done before the first fire 
was made upon Fossett on shore. The kettles in the boat had been ranked up 
along the sides, leaving an open gangway through the middle of the boat from 
bow to stern. Unfortunately, the bow lay to shore, so that the guns of the Indi- 
ans raked the whole length of the gangway, and their fire was constant and de- 
structive. Spears and several others of the bravest men had already fallen, some 
killed and others mortally wounded. From the commencement of the battle, 
many efforts had been made to disengage the boat from the shore, all of which 
had failed. The hope was that, if they could once loose the cable 1 , the boat 
would drift out of the reach of the enemy's guns ; but any attempt to do this by 
hand would expose the person to certain destruction. Fossett's right arm was 
broken, and he could no longer handle his rifle. He got a pole, and placing him- 
self low down in the bow of the boat, commenced punching at the hook 
in the chain, but the point of the hook was turned from him, and all his efforts 
seemed only to drive it further into the link. He at length discovered where a 
small limb had been cut from the pole, and left a knot about an inch long ; this 
knot, after a number of efforts, he placed against the point of the hook, and, jerking 
the pole suddenly towards him, threw the hook out of the link. The chain fell,-and 
the boat drifted slowly out from the bank ; and by means of an oar worked over 
head, the boat was brought into the middle of the river, with her side to the shore, 
which protected them from the fire of the Indians. The battle had now lasted up- 
wards of an hour. The odds against the crew was at least ten to one. The fire 
had been very destructive on both sides, and a great many of the Indians had been 
killed ; but if the boat had remained much longer at the shore, it was manifest 
that there would have been none of the crew left to tell the tale of their disaster. 

The survivors had now time to look round upon the havoc that had been made 
of their little band. Five of their companions lay dead in the gangway Spears, 


Floyd, Fossett and Boyce were wounded Crepps, Crist and Moore remained 
unhurt. It was evident that Spears' wound was mortal, and that he could sur- 
vive but a few moments. He urged the survivors to run the boat to the opposite 
side of the river, and save themselves by immediate flight, and leave him to his 
fate. Crepps and Crist positively refused. 

But the boat was gradually nearing the southern shore of the river. At this 
time the Indians, to the number of forty or fifty, were seen crossing the river 
above, at a few hundred yards distance, some on logs, and some swimming and 
carrying their rifles over their heads. The escape of the boat was now hopeless, 
as there was a large body of Indians on each side of the river. If the boat had 
been carried immediately to the opposite side of the river as soon as her cable 
was loosed, the survivors might have escaped ; but to such minds and hearts, the 
idea of leaving their dying friends to the mercy of the Indian tomahawk was in- 
supportable. The boat at length touched the southern shore a hasty preparation 
was made to bear the wounded into the woods Floyd, Fossett and Boyce got to 
land, and sought concealment in the thickets. Crepps and Crist turned to their 
^suffering friend, Spears, but death had kindly stepped in and cut short the savage 
triumph. The woman now remained. They oiFered to assist her to shore, that 
she might take her chance of escape in the woods ; but the danger of her posi- 
tion, and the scenes of blood and death around her, had overpowered her senses, 
and no entreaty or remonstrance could prevail with her to move. She sat with 
her face buried in her hands, and no effort could make her sensible that there was 
any hope of escape. 

The Indians had gained the south side of the river, and were yelling like 
blood-hounds as they ran down towards the boat, which they now looked upon 
as their certain prey. Crepps and Crist seized a rifle apiece, and ascended the 
river bank : at the top of the hill they met the savages and charged them with a 
shout. Crepps fired upon them, but Crist, in his haste, had taken up Fossett's 
gun, which had got wet as he swam with it into the boat on the opposite side 
it missed fire. At this time Moore passed them and escaped. The Indians, 
when charged by Crepps and Crist, fell back into a ravine that put into the river 
immediately above them. They parted, and met no more. The Indians, intent 
on plunder, did not pursue them, but rushed into the boat. Crist heard one long, 
agonizing shriek from the unfortunate woman, and the wild shouts of the sava- 
ges, as they possessed themselves of the spoils of a costly but barren victory. 

Crepps, in the course of the next day, arrived in the neighborhood of Long 
lick, and being unable to travel farther, laid down in the woods to die. Moore 
alone escaped unhurt, and brought in the tidings of the defeat of the boat. The 
country was at once roused. Crepps was found, and brought in, but died about 
the time he reached home. Crist described Crepps as a tall, fair haired, hand- 
some man : kind, brave, and enterprising, and possessed of all those high and 
striking qualities that gave the heroic stamp to that hardy race of pioneers 
amongst whom he had lived and died. He had been the lion of the fight. By 
exposing himself to the most imminent peril, he inspirited his companions with 
his own contempt of danger. He and Crist had stood over Fossett, and kept the 
Indians treed while he disengaged the cable ; and his coolness during the long, 
bloody struggle of the day, had won the admiration" of Crist himself than whom 
a more dauntless man had never contended with mortal foe. Crepps left a young 
wife and one son, then an infant. His wife was enceinte at the time of his death 
the posthumous child was a daughter, and is the wife of the Hon. Charles A. 
WicklifFe. The son died shortly after he arrived at man's estate. 

Crist was so disabled by the wound that he could not walk. The bones of 
his heel were crushed. He crept into a thicket and laid down his wound bled 
profusely. He could not remain here long. His feet were now of no use to him. 
He bound his moccasins on his knees, and commenced his journey. Piece by 
piece his hat, hunting shirt, and vest were consumed to shield his hands against 
the rugged rocks which lay in his way. He crawled on all day up the river, 
and at night crossed over to the north side upon a log that he rolled down the 
bank. He concealed himself in a thicket and tried to sleep but pain and ex- 
haustion and loss of blood had driven sleep from his eyes. His foot and leg 
were much swollen and inflamed. Guided by the stars he crept on again be- 
tween midnight and day he came in sight of a camp fire, and heard the barking 


of a dog. A number of Indians rose up from around the fire, and he crept softly 
away from the light. He laid down and remained quiet for some time. When 
all was still again, he resumed his slow and painful journey. He crawled into a 
small branch, and kept on down it for some distance upon the rocks, that he 
might leave no trace behind him. At daylight, he ascended an eminence of con- 
siderable height to ascertain, if possible, where he was, and how to shape his 
future course; but all around was wilderness. He was aiming to reach Bullitt's 
lick, now about eight miles distant, and his progress was not half a mile an hour. 
He toiled on all day night came on the second night of his painful journey. 
Since leaving the small branch the night before, he had found no water since 
the day before the battle he had not tasted food. Worn down with hunger, want 
of sleep, acute pain, and raging thirst, he laid himself down to die. But his suf- 
ferings were not to end here guided again by the stars, he struggled on. Every 
rag that he could interpose between the rugged stones and his bleeding hands 
and knee (for he could now use but one), was worn away. The morning came 
the morning of the third day ; it brought him but little hope; but the indomi- 
table spirit within him disdained to yield, and during the day he made what pro- 
gress he could. As the evening drew on, he became aware that he was in the 
vicinity of Bullitt's lick; but he could go no further; nature had made her last 
effort, and he laid himself down and prayed that death would speedily end his 

When darkness came on, from where he lay he could see the hundred fires of 
the furnaces at the licks all glowing; and he even fancied he could see the dusky 
forms of the firemen as they passed to and fro around the pits, but they were more 
than a half mile off, and how was he to reach them 1 He had not eaten a morsel 
in four days, he had been drained of almost his last drop of blood, the wounded 
leg had become so stiff and swollen that for the last two days and nights he had 
dragged it after him ; the flesh was worn from his knee and from the palms of his 
hands. Relief was in his sight, but to reach it was impossible. Suddenly he 
heard the tramp of a horse's feet approaching him, and hope sprang up once more 
in his breast. The sound came nearer and still more near. A path ran near the 
place where he lay, a man on horse-back approached within a few rods of him, 
he mustered his remaining strength, and hailed him ; but to his utter surprise and 
dismay, the horseman turned suddenly and galloped off towards the Licks. De- 
spair now seized him. To die alone of hunger and thirst, in sight of hundreds 
and of plenty, seemed to him the last dregs of the bitterest cup that fate could 
offer to mortal lips. ! that he could have fallen by the side of his friends in 
the proud battle ! That he could have met the Indian tomahawk, and died in the 
strength of his manhood ; and not have been doomed to linger out his life in days 
and nights of pain and agony, and to die by piecemeal in childish despair. While 
these thoughts were passing in his mind, the horseman (a negro), regained the 
Licks and alarmed the people there with the intelligence that the Indians were 
approaching. On being interrogated, all the account he could give was, that 
some person had called to him in the woods a half mile off, and called him by the 
wrong name. It was manifest it was not Indians ; and forthwith a number of 
men set out, guided by the negro, to the place. Grist's hopes again revived, when 
he heard voices, and saw lights approaching. They came near and hailed. Crist 
knew the voice, and called to the man by name. This removed all doubt, and 
they approached the spot where he lay. A sad and mournful sight was before 
them. A man that had left them but a few days before, in the bloom of youth, 
health and buoyant spirits, now lay stretched upon the earth, a worn and mangled 
skeleton, unable to lift a hand to bid them welcome. They bore him home. The 
ball was extracted ; but his recovery was slow and doubtful. It was a year before 
he was a man again. 

The woman in the boat was carried a prisoner to Canada. Ten years after- 
wards, Crist met her again in Kentucky. She had been redeemed by an Indian 
trader, and brought into Wayne's camp on the Maumee, and restored to her friends. 
She informed Crist that the body of Indians which made the attack on the boat, 
numbered over one hundred and twenty, of whom about thirty were killed in the 
engagement. This account was confirmed by Indians whom Crist met with 
afterwards, and who had been in the battle. They told Crist that the boat's crew 
fought more like devils than men, and if they had taken one of them prisoner, 


they would have roasted him alive. Crist was afterwards a member of the Ken- 
tucky legislature, and in 1808 was a member of Congress. He died at his resi- 
dence in Bullitt county, in August, 1844, aged eighty years. 

ALEXANDER SCOTT BULLITT was born in Prince William county, Virginia, in 
the year 1761. His father, Cuthbert Bullitt, was a lawyer of some distinction, 
and practiced his profession with success until he was appointed a judge of the 
supreme court of Virginia, which office he held at the time of his death. In 1784, 
six years before the father's death, the subject of this sketch emigrated to Ken- 
tucky, then a portion of Virginia, and settled on or near the stream called Bullskin, 
in what is now Shelby county. Here he resided but a few months, being com- 
pelled by the annoyances to which he was subjected by the Indians, to seek a less 
exposed situation. This he found in Jefferson county, in the neighborhood of 
Sturgus' station, where he entered and settled upon the tract of land on which 
he continued to reside until his death. In the fall of 1785, he married the daughter 
of Col. W. Christian, who had removed from Virginia the preceding spring. In 
April, 1786, Colonel Christian, with a party of eight or ten men, pursued a small 
body of Indians, who had been committing depredations on the property of the 
settlers in the neighborhood of Sturgus' station. Two of the Indians were over- 
taken about a mile north of Jeffersonville, Indiana, and finding escape impossible, 
they turned upon their pursuers, and one of them fired at Colonel Christian, who 
was foremost in the pursuit, and mortally wounded him. Next to Colonel Chris- 
tian, was the subject of this sketch and Colonel John O'Bannon, who fired simul- 
taneously, bringing both Indians to the ground. Under the impression that the 
Indians were both dead, a man by the name of Kelly incautiously approached 
them, when one of them who, though mortally wounded, still retained some 
strength and all his thirst for blood, raised himself to his knees, and fired with 
the rifle which had not been discharged, killed Kelly, fell back and expired.* 

In the year 1792, Colonel Ballitt was elected by the people of Jefferson county 
a delegate to the convention which met in Danville, and framed the constitution 
of Kentucky. After the adoption of the constitution, he represented the county 
in the legislature, and was president of the senate until 1799, when he was again 
chosen a delegate to the convention to amend the constitution, which met in 
Frankfort. Of this convention he was chosen president. The year following 
this convention, (1800,) he was elected lieutenant governor of the state, in which 
capacity he served one term. After this, his county continued to send him to the 
legislature, of which body he served either as a representative or senator, until 
about 1808, when he retired from public life, and resided on his farm in Jefferson 
county until his death, which occurred on the 13th of April, 1816. 


BUTLER county was organized in the year 1810. It is situated in 
the south-west part of the State, and lies on both sides of Green 
river. It is bounded on the north by Ohio and Grayson; east by 
Warren ; south by Logan, and west by Muhlenburg. The taxa- 
ble property of the county in 1846, as reported by the auditor, is 
$501,483 ; number of acres of land, 163,441 ; average value per 
acre, $1,45 ; white males over twenty-one years, 793; children 
between the ages of five and sixteen years, 1,162. Population in 
1830, 3,055 ; in 1840, 3,898. The surface is hilly ; the soil second 
rate, but productive. Besides Barren river, which flows through 

*This account, which is believed to be substantially correct, differs in some particulars from that 
given in the biographical sketch of Colonel Christian. 


the county, it is watered by a number of fine mill streams. To- 
bacco is the principal staple. 

The towns of the county are Morgantown, Lockport and 
Roduster. MORGANTOWN is the seat of justice, and is situated on 
the left or southern bank of Green river, one hundred and forty- 
one miles from Frankfort contains a court-house and jail, post 
office, one school, two lawyers, three doctors, six different trades, 
and one hundred and ten inhabitants. Incorporated in 1813. 
Lockport is a small village, containing thirty inhabitants, situated 
on the Green river, at lock and dam No. 4. Roduster is also a 
very small village, containing about thirty inhabitants. 

This county received its name in honor of General BUTLER, of Pennsylvania, 
an officer of the revolutionary war, who distinguished himself, on more than one 
occasion, in a remarkable manner. He commanded the right wing of the Ameri- 
can army under General St. Clair, in the memorable and disastrous battle with 
the Indians on one of the tributaries of the Wabash, near the Miami villages, in 
the now state of Ohio. He was wounded early in the action, and before his 
wounds could be dressed, an Indian who had penetrated the ranks of the regi- 
ment, ran up to the spot where he lay, and tomahawked him before his attendants 
could interpose. The desperate savage was instantly killed. 


CALDWELL county was formed in 1809, and named in honor of 
Gen. John Caldwell. Jt is situated on the waters of the Cumber- 
land and Tennessee rivers bounded on the north by Crittenden 
and Hopkins ; east by Christian ; south by Trigg ; and west by 
the Tennessee river. The portion of the county lying between 
the Twigg and Crittenden lines, is a beautiful plain, being level 
and productive, except between the Cumberland and Tennessee, 
which is broken and poor, but abounds with ore ; and there are 
already in operation in that section, five large iron establish- 
ments, and one furnace for smelting lead. The portion of the 
county bordering on the Trade water, (a navigable stream,) is 
generally undulating. Coal has been found on Flinn's fork, but 
has not yet been worked. The principal exports are tobacco, 
corn, pork, and iron. 

The valuation of taxable property in 1846, was $2,157,206 ; 
number of acres of land, 304,935 ; number of white males over 
twenty one years of age, 1,935 ; children between five and six- 
teen years of age, 2,253. Population in 1830, 8,832 in 1840, 

The towns of Caldwell are, Princeton, Fredonia, and Eddyville. 
PRINCETON, the county seat, is about 230 miles from Frankfort 
contains four churches (Episcopal, Methodist, Presbyterian and 
Cumberland Presbyterian), Cumberland college, one academy, 
two schools, ten stores and groceries, four taverns, seven lawyers, 
seven doctors, and twenty mechanical shops and manufactories. 
Incorporated in 1820 population twelve hundred. Fredonia is a 


small town, twelve miles west of Princeton, and contains one 
Presbyterian church, one school, two stores, two doctors, and four 
mechanical trades population one hundred. Eddyville is situa- 
ted on the Cumberland river, at the mouth of Eddy creek, from 
which it takes its name contains one church edifice, two schools, 
ten stores and groceries, four warehouses, two taverns, three doc- 
tors, and fourteen mechanical shops. Incorporated in 1812 pop- 
ulation six hundred. 

THE CUMBERLAND COLLEGE is located in the vicinity of Princeton, and under 
the control and management of the Cumberland Presbyterian church. The in- 
stitution was organized in 1825, as a manual labor school; but the mode of con- 
ducting it has been changed, and it is now a literary institution only, the manual 
labor system not having operated well. Like most institutions of learning in the 
west, it has had many and trying reverses. In 1842 it was in a great measure 
abandoned by the church. In 1844, the Green river synod assumed the charge 
of the college, and undertook to endow and perpetuate it. Its operations, in the 
mean time, had been carried on by enterprising individuals. The institution is 
located one mile from the court house. The site is beautiful, and susceptible of 
the highest degree of improvement. There are two neat and substantial brick 
buildings, one of them newly erected, for dormitories and public purposes, be- 
sides a president's house. The college library consists of several hundred vol- 
umes. There is also a respectable philosophical and chemical apparatus. The 
faculty of the institution consists of a president, two professors, and a tutor. The 
average number of students is sixty. The whole number of graduates since the 
establishment of the college is fifty-two. 

Gen. JOHN CALDWELL, in honor of whom this county received its name, was a 
native of Prince Edward county, Virginia. He removed to Kentucky in 1781, and 
settled near where Danville now stands. He took an active part in the conflicts 
with the Indians, and rose by regular steps from the rank of a common soldier to 
that of a major general in the militia. He served as a subaltern in the campaign 
against the Indians in 1786, under Gen. George Rogers Clark. He was a prom- 
inent man of his day esteemed in private and political, as he was in military 
life. He was a member, from Nelson county, of the conventions held in Dan- 
ville in 1787 and 1788. In 1792, he was elected from the same county a senato- 
rial elector, under the first constitution ; and in the college of electors, he was 
chosen the senator from Nelson. He took his seat in the senate at the session of 
1792-3. He was elected lieutenant governor of the State in 1804, and during 
his term of service removed to the lower part of the State. He died at Frank- 
fort in the year 1807 or 1808, while the legislature was in session. 


GALLOWAY county was formed in 1821, and is situated in the 
south-western part of the State, immediately below and on the 
waters of the Tennessee river bounded on the north by Mar- 
shall, east by the Tennessee river, south by the State line of 
Tennessee, and west by the county of Graves. The surface of 
more than half of the county is level bottoms, interspersed with 
enough timber for farming purposes, though the broken and hilly 
portion has the densest population. The staple products are to- 
bacco, corn, and small grain. 

Value of taxable property in 1846, $860,004 ; number of acres 


of land in the county, 235,736 ; average value per acre, $1,78 ; 
number of white males over twenty-one years of age, 1,191 ; 
children between five and sixteen years old, 1,966. Population 
in 1840, 9,794. 

There are three towns, Murray, New Concord, and Wadesbo- 
rough, in Galloway. MURRAY, the county seat, is about two hun- 
dred and fifty miles from Frankfort contains a handsome brick 
court-house and jail, a Christian church, four stores, two taverns, 
three lawyers, three doctors, five mechanics' shops, with 200 in- 
habitants named after the Hon. J. L. Murray. New Concord is 
a small village in the south-eastern part of the county, contain- 
ing two doctors, one store, one tavern, a few mechanics' shops, 
with 60 inhabitants. Wadesborough was formerly the county seat 
contains one store, two taverns, one doctor, one smith, one 
tanyard population 70. Named after Mr. Banister Wade. 

This county was called after Col. RICHARD GALLOWAY, who removed with his 
family to Kentucky in 1776. He speedily became an efficient actor in the affairs 
of the infant settlements, and his services were numerous and valuable. As 
early as 1777, he and John Todd were elected the first burgesses to the general 
assembly of Virginia ; while, in the spring of the same year, he had been appointed 
a justice of the peace. In 1779, he, with others, under an act of the Virginia legis- 
lature, was appointed a trustee to lay off the town of Boonsborough. The 
trustees declined to act; others were appointed. Mr. Morehead, in his eloquent 
Boonsborough address, classes Col. Galloway among the law-givers and defen- 
ders of the frontier. His career in the new settlements, however, was short. 
Like a great many other daring spirits of the times, he was killed before he had 
an opportunity of very greatly distinguishing himself. 


CAMPBELL county was formed in 1794, and named in honor of 
Colonel JOHN CAMPBELL. It is situated in the north part of the 
State, and lies on the Ohio, immediately above Licking river : 
Bounded on the north and east by the Ohio river ; south by Pen- 
dleton, and west by Licking river, which separates it from Ken- 
ton. ALEXANDRIA, the county seat, is about eighty miles from 
Frankfort. The face of the country is diversified the river bot- 
toms being level, rich and productive, while the uplands are undu- 
lating or hilly. The staple products are corn, wheat, tobacco 
and pork. 

The taxable property of Campbell in 1846, was valued at 
$1,668,757; number of acres of land in the county, 77,208; 
average value per acre, $11,56; total number of white males 
over twenty-one years of age, 1,472; children between five and 
sixteen years old, 1,444. Population in 1840, 5,214. 

NEWPORT is the principal town of Campbell. It is situated on 
a beautiful bottom on the Ohio, immediately above the junction 
of the Licking with that noble river, and opposite the city of 
Cincinnati. It contains five churches of different denominations, 


one seminary of learning, five private schools, five lawyers, five 
physicians, six stores, twenty-three groceries, two lodges of Ma- 
sons, one lodge of Odd Fellows, one division of the Sons of 
Temperance, one rolling mill, one cotton factory, one rope walk, 
one silk factory, three blacksmith shops, twelve carpenter and 
joiners' shops, two tailor and two saddler shops, two taverns, one 
court-house, one market-house with two hundred and fifty brick 
and one hundred and seventy -five frame houses. Population 
about 4,000. Newport is rapidly increasing in population and 
wealth, and her trade and manufacturing establishments have 
more than doubled within the short period of five years. 

ALEXANDRIA is the county seat of Campbell, situated about thir- 
teen miles from Newport, and about eighty miles from Frankfort. 
It contains a court-house and th'e usual public buildings, with a 
small population. 

The county of Campbell, as originally organized, comprised the 
territory at present embraced by Campbell, Pendleton, Boone, 
Kenton and part of Grant. The justices of the first quarter ses- 
sion court of the new county, were Washington Berry, presi- 
dent, Captain John Craig and Charles Daniel, sen. The county 
court justices, were Robert Benham, Thomas Kennedy, John 
Hall, John Bush, John Cook, John Ewing and Thomas Corwin. 
The first courts of the county met, by law, at Wilmington, 
on Licking river, about twenty-two miles from Newport, but the 
county seat was afterwards located at Newport. 

James Taylor (the present venerable General James Taylor of 
Newport), was elected the first clerk of both the county and quar- 
ter sessions court, and Captain Nathan Kelly the first sheriff of 
the county. When the county of Kenton was stricken off from 
Campbell, the county seat was removed to Alexandria. 

In the autumn of 1779, two keel boats, laden with military stores, bound from 
New Orleans to Pittsburgh, under the command of Colonel Rogers, were ascend- 
ing the Ohio river; and^when near the sand-bar, above where the city of Cin- 
cinnati now stands, called four mile bar they discovered a number of Indians 
on rafts and in canoes coming out of the mouth of the Little Miami river, which 
stream was then very high, and shot its waters, together with the Indian craft, 
nearly across the river. Colonel Rogers immediately landed his boats, and the 
crew, to the number of seventy men, advanced secretly through the woods and 
willows that grew thickly on the sand bar which here joined the Kentucky shore, 
expecting to attack the Indians, when they should land, by surprise. Before, 
however, Rogers had succeeded in reaching the point where he presumed he 
would encounter the savages, he found himself suddenly surrounded by a force 
of more than treble his numbers. The Indians instantly poured in a close dis- 
charge of rifles, and then throwing down their guns, fell upon the survivors with 
the tomahawk! The panic was complete, and the slaughter prodigious. Major 
Rogers, together with forty-five of his men, were almost instantly destroyed. 
The survivors made an effort to regain their boats, but the five men who had been 
left in charge of them, had immediately put off from shore in the hindmost boat, 
and the enemy had already gained possession of the other. Disappointed in the 
attempt, they turned furiously upon the enemy, and aided by the approach of 
darkness, forced their way through their lines, and with the loss of several 
severely wounded, at length effected their escape to Harrodsburgh. 

Among the wounded was Capt. Robert Benham. Shortly after breaking through 
the enemy's line, he was shot through both hips, and the bones being shattered, 


he instantly fell to the ground. Fortunately, a large tree had recently fallen near 
the spot where he lay, and with great pain, he dragged himself into the top, and 
lay concealed among the branches. The Indians, eager in pursuit of the others, 
passed him without notice, and by midnight all was quiet. On the following day, 
the Indians returned to the battle ground, in order to strip the dead and take care 
of the boats. Benham, although in danger of famishing, permitted them to pass 
without making known his condition, very correctly supposing that his crippled 
legs would only induce them to tomahawk him on the spot, in order to avoid the 
trouble of carrying him to their town. 

He lay close, therefore, until the evening of the second day, when perceiving a 
racoon descending a tree, near him, he shot it, hoping to devise some means of 
reaching it, when he could kindle a fire and make a meal. Scarcely had his gun 
cracked, however, when he heard a human cry, apparently not more than fifty 
yards off. Supposing it to be an Indian, he hastily reloaded his gun, and re- 
mained silent, expecting the approach of an enemy. Presently the same voice 
was heard again, but much nearer. Still Benham made no reply, but cocked his 
gun, and sat ready to fire as soon as an object appeared. A third halloo was 
quickly heard, followed by an exclamation of impatience and distress, which con- 
vinced Benham that the unknown must be a Kentuckian. As soon, therefore, as 
he heard the expression, " whoever you are, for God's sake answer me," he 
replied with readiness, and the parties were soon together. 

Benham, as we have already observed, was shot through both legs. The man 
who now appeared, had escaped from the same battle, with both arms broken ! 
Thus each was enabled to supply what the other wanted. Benham, having the 
perfect use of his arms, could load his gun and kill game with great readiness, 
while his friend, having the use of his legs, could kick the game to the spot 
where Benham sat, who was thus enabled to cook it. When no wood was near 
them, his companion would rake up brush with his feet, and gradually roll it 
within reach of Benham's hands, who constantly fed his companion, and dressed 
his wounds as well as his own tearing up both their shirts for ' that purpose. 
They found some difficulty in procuring water at first; but Benham at length 
took his own hat, and placing the rim between the teeth of his companion, direc- 
ted him to wade into the Licking up to his neck, and dip the hat into the water 
by sinking his own head. The man who could walk, was thus enabled to bring 
water by means of his teeth, which Benham could afterwards dispose of as was 

In a few days, they had killed all the squirrels and birds within reach, and the 
man with broken arms was sent out to drive game within gunshot of the spot to 
which Benhatn was confined. Fortunately, wild turkies were abundant in those 
woods, and his companion would walk around, and drive them towards Benham, 
who seldom failed to kill two or three of each flock. In this manner they sup- 
ported themselves for several weeks, until their wounds had healed so as to ena- 
ble them to travel. They then shifted their quarters, and put up a small shed at 
the mouth of the Licking, where they encamped until late in November, anxiously 
expecting the arrival of some boat, which should convey them to the falls of the 

On the 27th of November, they observed a flat boat moving leisurely down the 
river. Benham instantly hoisted his hat upon a stick, and hallooed loudly for 
help. The crew, however, supposing them to be Indians at least suspecting 
them of an intention to decoy them ashore, paid no attention to their signals of 
distress, but instantly put over to the opposite side of the river, and manning ev- 
ery oar, endeavored to pass them as rapidly as possible. Benham beheld them 
pass him with a sensation bordering on despair, for the place was much frequen- 
ted by Indians, and the approach of winter threatened them w r ith destruction, 
unless speedily relieved. At length, after the boat had passed him nearly half a 
mile, he saw a canoe put off from its stern, and cautiously approach the Ken- 
tucky shore, evidently reconnoitering them with great suspicion. 

He called loudly upon them for assistance, mentioned his name, and made 
known his condition. After a long parley, and many evidences of reluctance on 
the part of the crew, the canoe at length touched the shore, and Benham and his 
friend were taken on board. Their appearance excited much suspicion. They 
were almost entirely naked, and their faces were garnished with six weeks 


growth of beard. The one was barely able to hobble on crutches, and the other 
could manage to feed himself with one of his hands. They were taken to Lou- 
isville, where their clothes (which had been carried off in the boat which deserted 
them) were restored to them, and after a few weeks confinement, both were per- 
fectly recovered. 

Benham afterwards served in the north-west throughout the whole of the Indian 
war, accompanied the expeditions of Harmar and Wilkinson, shared in the dis- 
aster of St. Clair, and afterwards in the triumph of Wayne. Upon the return of 
peace, he bought the land upon which Rogers had been defeated, and ended his 
days in tranquility, amid the scenes which had witnessed his sufferings. 

The county of Campbell received its name in honor of Colonel JOHN CAMP- 
BELL, a native of Ireland. He came to Kentucky at an early period. Having 
received a grant of four thousand acres of land from the commonwealth of Vir- 
ginia, which was located immediately below, and adjoining the grant on which 
Louisville stands, Col. Campbell became an extensive landed proprietor, and a 
very wealthy man. He was a member of the convention which formed the first 
constitution of Kentucky, from Jefferson county. During the same year, he was 
elected one of the electors of the senate from Jefferson, and in the electoral col- 
lege was chosen the senator from Jefferson county, in the new State legislature. 
He was a large man, of fine personal appearance, and strong mind, but rough in 
his manners. He never married, and having died intestate, his large estate passed 
into the hands of many heirs. 

General JAMES TAYLOR, one of the pioneers of Kentucky, resides in Newport. 
He has attained his seventy-eighth year, and is remarkably active and sprightly 
for a man of his age. His venerable consort, to whom he has been united for 
upwards of half a century, and who came to Kentucky in the midst of Indian 
troubles, still retains much of the vigor of her youth, and attends strictly to her 
household affairs. The mansion of these venerable pioneers, "Belleview" one of 
the most beautiful and costly in Kentucky, has long been distinguished for ele- 
gant hospitality. 

Mrs. Taylor removed to Kentucky in 1784, in company with a large party of 
emigrants, among them the Rev. Augustine Eastin, of Bourbon county, who 
married an elder sister. In their progress through the wilderness, and after they 
had made their encampment for the night, the party of Mr. Eastin were overta- 
ken about night-fall by a large body of emigrants, who were seeking new homes 
in Kentucky. Mr. Eastin advised the party to encamp with him, as Indian 
signs had been discovered through the day, and there were strong reasons to ap- 
prehend an attack. The party, however, disregarded the warning, and having 
traveled about a mile further, made their encampment. From some unex- 
plained cause probably incredulous of danger they retired to rest without sta- 
tioning a single sentinel to guard their camp, or warn them of the approach of 
an enemy. In the midst of the night, when the fatigued and jaded travelers 
were wrapped in the most profound sleep, the savages attacked them, and killed and 
scalped more than half of the company, numbering altogether about forty per- 
sons. A man, his wife, and two children, of this company, became separated at 
the instant of alarm. The mother, with her youngest child, effected her escape 
to the woods, and made her way back to the camp of Mr. Eastin. The father 
also escaped, and in a short time afterwards reached the settlements; the eldest 
child was slain. Two weeks after the arrival of Mr. Eastin's party in Kentucky, 
the husband and wife were re-united, each supposing, up to the period of their 
meeting, the other to be dead. 

Gen. James Taylor is a native of Virginia, having been born at Midway, in 
Caroline county, on the 19th day of April, 1769. He was a quarter-master general 
of the north-western army in the late war, and was active in the discharge of the 
important duties which devolved upon him. When Gen. Hull surrendered De- 
troit to the British forces under General Brock, in August, 1812, General Tay- 
lor and Major (now General) Jesup, with other officers, were called upon to as- 
sist in drawing up the articles of capitulation ; but they all indignantly refused 
any participation in an act so disgraceful to the American arms. General Taylor 
had previously taken an active part in the plan concerted by the field officers to 
displace General Hull, and confer the command of the fortress on General McAr- 


thur. Had the latter, with his command, reached Detroit in time, the plan would 
have been consummated. In the course of a long life, General Taylor has accu- 
mulated a very large estate, and is probably one of the most extensive landed 
proprietors of the west. 


CARROLL county was formed in the year 1838, and named in 
honor of CHARLES CARROLL of Carrollton. It lies on the Ohio and 
Kentucky rivers bounded north by the Ohio river, east by Gal- 
latin, south by Owen and Henry, and west by Trimble county. 
The hills bordering the rivers are lofty, and in some places pre- 
cipitous ; back of them the surface of the county is rolling, and 
the soil of good quality. The staple products are corn, small 
grain, and Irish potatoes. 

The taxable property of the county, according to the auditor's 
report of 1846, amounts to $1,310,213 ; number of acres of land 
in the county, 75,525 ; number of white males over twenty-one 
years of age, 884 ; number of children between five and sixteen 
years old, 1,094. Population in 1840, 3,966. 

CARROLLTON, (formerly Port William), the seat of justice, is 
about fifty miles from Frankfort. It is situated on the Ohio, im- 
mediately above the mouth of the Kentucky river contains a 
fine brick court-house and jail, three churches, (Methodist, Presby- 
terian and Reformed), seven stores and groceries, four taverns, four 
lawyers, three physicians, one academy, one common school, two 
piano forte manufacturers, thirty mechanical trades, embracing 
every variety, two corn mills, one steam saw mill, one wool carding 
factory, and one rope walk with six spindles, working twenty 
tons of hemp per week. Population 800. It was incorporated 
as Port William in 1794 ; but received its present name from 
" Carrollton," the residence of Charles Carroll. 

GHENT is a neat village, also situated on the Ohio river, oppo- 
site the town of Vevay in Indiana. It contains one Baptist, one 
Methodist, and one Reformed church, one tavern, five stores and 
groceries, two physicians, one tobacco factory, and seven me- 
chanics' shops population 300. Named after the city of Ghent 
in Europe, where the treaty of peace between Great Britain and 
the United States was signed. Preston is a small village situated 
below the mouth of the Kentucky, and opposite Carrollton con- 
tains a store and tavern and about 100 inhabitants. Named 
after Col. Preston, of Virginia, who owned the land on which it 
is erected. 

In March, 1785, a body of Indians surrounded the house of Mr. Elliott, situated 
at the mouth of Kentucky river, and made a furious assault upon it. The mem- 
bers of the family generally made their escape ; but Mr. Elliott was killed and 
his house burnt by the savages. In 1786 or '87, Captain Ellison built a block 
house on the point at the confluence of the Kentucky and Ohio river, and was 
successively driven from his post in the two succeeding summers, by a superior 


Indian force. In 1789-90, General Charles Scott built a block house on the 
second bank, in an elevated position, and fortified it by picketing. This post was 
occupied until 1792, when the town of Port William (now Carrollton) was first 
laid out. The Indians were then troublesome. 

ANTIQUITIES. About one-fourth of a mile from the Kentucky river, on the sec- 
ond bank of the Ohio, and about one hundred yards from the latter river, there 
are the remains of a fortification, of a circular form, about one hundred and twenty 
feet in diameter, situated on level ground. About two miles from the mouth of 
the Kentucky, there are also the remains of what must have been a formidable 
fortification, situated on an eligible point, and of quadrangular form. The heavy 
embankment on which it was erected, is evidently of artificial construction, and 
must have been made at great labor and expense. It includes about an acre of 
ground, and is so graded as to throw the water from the centre in every direction. 
On the west and north of the fort, the paths, or roads leading to the water, and 
which were doubtless used for the general purpose of ingress and egress, are still 
distinctly marked and visible. 

There are a number of mounds in the county, but generally of small size. In 
1837, one was examined, in which was found the skull and thigh bones of a hu- 
man being of very large frame, together with a silver snuff box, made in the shape 
of an infant's shoe. On an elevated hill, a short distance from the Kentucky 
river, in opening a stone quarry, the jaw bone and a large number of human teeth 
were found ; and on the points of the ridges, generally, similar discoveries have 
been made. About four miles from Carrollton, on the Muddy fork of White run, 
in the bed of the creek, on a limestone rock, is the form of a human being, in a 
sitting posture ; and near by, is the form of one lying on his back, about six feet 
long, and distinctly marked. 

This county received its name in honor of CHARLES CARROLL, of Carrollton, 
one of the signers of the declaration of Independence, and the last of that immortal 
band of patriots who descended to the tomb. Mr. Carroll was born at Annapolis, 
Maryland, on the 8th of September, 1737, O. S. He received his literary educa- 
tion in France, and studied law in England. In 1764, he returned to Maryland, 
a finished scholar and an accomplished gentleman. He married in 1768. He 
soon became a distinguished advocate of popular rights, and ultimately an ardent 
and devoted friend of the independence of the American colonies. At one time 
the delegates from Maryland in the continental congress were instructed to vote 
against the declaration of independence ; but through his influence the decision 
was reversed, and under new instructions on the 4th of July, 1776, the votes of 
the Maryland delegation were given for independence. Mr. Carroll having been 
appointed a delegate, on the 18th of July took his seat in Congress. On the same 
day a secret resolution was adopted, directing the declaration to be engrossed on 
parchment, and signed by all the members, which was accordingly done on the 
2nd of August. As Mr. Carroll had not given a vote on the adoption of that 
instrument, he was asked by the president if he would sign it ; " most willingly," 
he replied, and immediately affixed his name to that "record of glory," which has 
endeared him to his country, and rendered his name immortal. He subsequently 
aided in the formation of the constitution of Maryland, was a member of congress, 
a member of the state senate, and a member of the senate of the United States, 
He retired from public employments in 1801, and spent the remainder of his days 
in private life. On the 14th of November, 1832, at the advanced age of 95, he 
was gathered to his fathers. 

An anecdote is told of Carroll, illustrative of the fearlessness and firmness of 
the man, which may not be out of place here. Immediately after he placed his 
name to the declaration of independence, one of his friends jocularly remarked 
that if the British got hold of him, they would not know whether it were he, or 
the Charles Carroll of Massachusetts, who had signed the declaration; conse- 
quently, they would be at a loss which to hang as the rebel. " In order," says 
he, " that there may be no mistake about that, I will save them the trouble of 
hanging two of us," and instantly affixed his residence to his name, and by which 
he was ever afterwards known as " Charles Carroll of Carrollton." 



CARTER county was formed in 1838, and called in honor of 
Colonel WILLIAM G. CARTER, the then senator in the state legisla- 
ture from the counties of Lewis, Greenup and Lawrence. It is 
situated in the extreme eastern portion of the State, and is 
watered by Big and Little Sandy rivers and Tygart's creek: 
Bounded on the north by Greenup and Lewis ; east by Big Sandy 
river, which divides Kentucky from Virginia ; south by Lawrence, 
and west by Fleming. GRAYSON, the county seat, is about one 
hundred and ten miles from Frankfort contains a fine brick 
court-house and other public buildings, two stores, four lawyers, 
two doctors, and several mechanics. Named after Colonel Robert 
Gray son. 

The taxable property of Carter in 1846, was assessed at 
$433,856; number of acres of land, 246,977; average value per 
acre, $1,13; number of white males over twenty-one years is 
given at 878; and number of children between five and sixteen 
years old, 1,194. Population in 1840, was 2,905. 

The surface of this county, like most of the eastern counties, 
is very much broken ; and except in the bottoms of the rivers 
and the numerous small streams by which it is watered, the lands 
are not well adapted for agricultural purposes. The hills, how- 
ever, abound in stone coal and iron ore ; and the mineral resour- 
ces of the county, when fully developed, will prove an inexhaus- 
tible source of wealth to its population. Salt, in considerable 
quantities, has been annually manufactured, at the Sandy Salines, 
for nearly half a century. 


CASEY county was organized in 1806, and named in memory 
of Colonel WILLIAM CASEY. It is situated in the middle part of 
the State, and lies on the head waters of Green river and the 
Rolling Fork of Salt river : Bounded on the north by Boyle ; east 
by Lincoln ; south by Pulaski, and west by Adair. LIBERTY is the 
seat of justice, which stands on the bank of Green river, about 
sixty-five miles from Frankfort. The surface is high and broken 
corn, wheat, oats and potatoes, the principal productions. 

Assessed taxable property in 1846, $719,257; number of acres 
of land in the county 175,118; average value per acre, $2,16; 
number of white males over twenty-one years of age, 961 ; 
number of children between five and sixteen years old, 1,425. 
Population in 1830, 4,342 in 1840, 4,939. 

LIBERTY contains a court-house and public offices, three 


churches, one school, five stores and groceries, three taverns, two 
lawyers, three doctors, seven mechanics' shops population 200. 
Incorporated 1830. 

Colonel WILLIAM CASEY, in honor of whom this county received its name, 
was a native of Frederick county, Virginia. In company with two or three fami- 
lies, he removed to Kentucky in the early part of the winter of 1779-80; and 
during the intensely cold weather of that memorable winter, lived in a camp on 
the Hanging fork of Dick's river. He remained there until the year 1791 ; when 
under the influence of that spirit of adventure and change which marked the era 
in which he lived, he struck his tent, and removed to Russell's creek, a tributary 
of Green river. Here, at a distance of fifty miles from any white settlement, in 
conjunction with several families who pushed their fortunes with him, he located 
and built a station. Though feeble in numbers, the hardy band of pioneers by 
whom he was surrounded, and who reposed in him unbounded confidence as a 
leader, maintained themselves, gallantly and victoriously, against several attacks 
of the Indians. His station was subsequently reinforced by several families, 
whose presence was instrumental in preventing any further assault on the part 
of the Indians. In one of the incursions, however, of a small band of savages, 
Mr. John Tucker, a Methodist preacher, together with his wife, were cruelly 


CHRISTIAN county was formed in the year 1796, and named in 
honor of Colonel WILLIAM CHRISTIAN. It lies in the south-western 
part of the State, adjoining the Tennessee line : Bounded on 
the north by Hopkins and Muhlenburg; east by Todd; south by 
the State of Tennessee, and west by Trigg. HOPKINSVILLE, the 
seat of justice, is about two hundred miles from Frankfort. 

The auditor reports the valuation of the taxable property of 
Christian for 1846, at $4,855,552; number of acres of land in the 
county, 377,147 ; average value per acre, $5,08 ; number of white 
males over twenty-one years of age, 2,149 ; number of children 
between five and sixteen years old, 2,548. Population in 1830, 
12,694 in 1840, 15,587. 

This county is twenty-two miles wide and thirty-two long, 
containing an area of seven hundred and four miles, and is the 
eleventh county in the State in point of wealth. The southern 
division of the county is generally composed of rich, fertile, level 
bottoms, and produces fine crops of tobacco, corn, wheat, rye, 
oats, and grass. The northern division is broken, and in some 
portions almost mountainous, with a soil less fertile, but suffi- 
ciently rich to sustain a large population finely timbered, well 
watered, and abounding in inexhaustible beds of coal and iron 
ore. The general basis of the soil is a red clay, founded on cav- 
ernous limestone ; and like most of the southern counties, 
abounds in sinks, caves and caverns. The situation of the coun- 
ty is elevated, and the surface of the country has a descending 
inclination in all directions from the centre, as it contains the 
head waters of Pond, Trade Water, Little, and the west fork of 


Red rivers : The first emptying into Green river, the second into 
the Ohio, and the two last into Cumberland river. Mineral and 
Sulphur springs 'abound, and many invalids visit them during the 
watering season. The staple products are corn, wheat, oats and 
tobacco not less than 3,500 hogsheads of the latter article being 
exported annually ; while coal from the mines, in large quanti- 
ties, finds its way to market. 

There are five towns in Christian Hopkinsville, Belleview, 
Garrettsburg, Lafayette and Oaktown. HOPKINSVILLE is the county 
seat; situated near the centre of the county, on Little river, in a 
gently undulating, fertile valley, and presents a neat and flour- 
ishing appearance : Contains a large and commodious court-house, 
market-house, branch of the Bank of Kentucky, six churches, 
(Baptist, Presbyterian, Christian, Cumberland Presbyterian, 
Methodist and Episcopalian), a part beautiful and well finished 
edifices; two male and two female academies ; one printing 
office, (the Hopkinsville Gazette), eighteen dry-goods stores, three 
drug stores, five groceries, three hotels, with nineteen lawyers, 
thirteen physicians, and the following mechanics' shops, viz : four 
blacksmiths, four saddlers, seven tailors, six carpenters, four cabi- 
net and chair makers, two tinners, two hatters, five shoe and 
boot makers, four wagon and carriage makers, two silversmiths, 
three house and sign painters, one gun smith, two tanneries, one 
barber, one carding factory, and three large tobacco factories. 
Population 2,000. Immediately in the vicinity of the town is a 
beautiful botanic garden and nursery, containing six acres, and 
supplied with choice fruit, shrubbery, plants, etc., together with a 
fine fish pond, well stocked with fish, the water of which is con- 
veyed five hundred yards through pipes, and flowing up in the 
centre, forms a beautiful fountain. This garden is a place of 
very general resort. Hopkinsville was laid out in 1799, on the 
lands of Mr. Bartholomew Wood, and called Elizabeth town, by 
which name it was known for several years. It was incorpo- 
rated in 1806, by its present name, in honor of General Samuel 

Belleview is a small village, ten miles from Hopkinsville, con- 
taining a Baptist church, post-office, store, grocery and tailor's 
shop. Garrettsburg is fourteen miles south from Hopkinsville, and 
contains a Baptist church, a lawyer, a doctor, two stores, one 
grocery and five mechanics' shops. Lafayette is situated in the 
south-west corner of the county, eighteen miles from Hopkins- 
ville, and one mile from the Tennessee state line contains 
one Presbyterian, one Cumberland Presbyterian, one Methodist 
Episcopal, one Methodist Protestant, and one Reformed or Chris- 
tian church ; eight stores and groceries, three physicians, one 
tavern, post-office and eleven mechanics' shops. Oaktown lies 
thirteen miles south-east of Hopkinsville, on the Clarksville road, 
and contains a post-office, two stores, a blacksmith and tailor. 

Christian county contains several exceedingly interesting natural curiosities. 
1st. Two of the forks of the Little river sink and disappear entirely in the earth 


for many miles, when they emerge and flow on about their usual width. 2d. 
The Pilot Rock, a rare curiosity, is situated about twelve miles from Hopkinsville, 
rather north of an east direction. The rock rests upon elevated ground, and is 
about two hundred feet in height. Its summit is level, and covers about half 
an acre of ground, which affords some small growth and wild shrubbery. This 
rock attracts great attention, and is visited by large numbers of persons, particu- 
larly in the summer months. Its elevated summit, which is reached without much 
difficulty, affords a fine view of the surrounding country for many miles, present- 
ing a prospect at once picturesque, magnificent and beautiful. 3d. Situated in 
the northern extremity of this county, near " Harrison's lanyard," about twenty 
miles from Hopkinsville, is a Natural Bridge, somewhat similar, but on a reduced 
scale, to the celebrated rock bridge in Virginia, which was considered by Mr. 
Jefferson the greatest natural curiosity in the world. The bridge in question 
crosses a deep ravine, is thirty feet in height, with a span of sixty feet, and a 
magnificent arch. The surface is perfectly level, and the general width about 
five feet. The scenery in the vicinity of the bridge is remarkably romantic, and 
presents great attractions to the lovers of the picturesque in nature. 

The first settlement in the county was made in 1785, by John Montgomery and 
James Davis, from Virginia, on the west fork of Red river, where they built a 
block house. At or near this block house, was a large cave, which served as a 
hiding place for themselves and families against the attacks of marauding parties 
of Indians. 

Col. WILLIAM CHRISTIAN, in honor of whom this county received its name, 
was a native of Augusta county, Virginia. He was educated at Stanton, and 
when very young, commanded a company attached to Col. Bird's regiment, which 
was ordered to the frontier during Braddock's war. In this service, he obtained 
the reputation of a brave, active and efficient officer. Upon the termination of 
Indian hostilities, he married the sister of Patrick Henry, and settled in the county 
of Bottetourt. In 1774, having received the appointment of colonel of militia, he 
raised about three hundred volunteers, and by forced marches, made a distance 
of two hundred miles, with the view of joining the forces under General Lewis, 
at the mouth of the Great Kenhawa. He did not arrive, however, in time to par- 
ticipate in the battle of Point Pleasant, which occurred on the preceding day, the 
10th of October, 1774. In 1775, he was a member of the general state convention 
of Virginia. In the succeeding year, when hostilities had commenced between 
Great Britain and the American colonies, he received the appointment of colonel 
in the Virginia line of the regular army, and took command of an expedition, 
composed of 1200 men, against the Cherokee Indians. No event of moment 
occurred in this expedition, the Indians having sued for peace, which was con- 
cluded with them. After his return from this expedition, Colonel Christian 
resigned his command in the regular service, and accepted one in the militia, at 
the head of which he kept down the lory spirit in his quarter of Virginia through- 
out the revolutionary struggle. Upon the conclusion of the war, he represented 
his county in the Virginia legislature for several years, sustaining a high reputa- 
tion for his civil as well as his military talents. 

In 1785, Colonel Christian emigrated to Kentucky, and settled on Bear-grass. 
The death of Colonel Floyd, who was killed by an Indian in 1783, rendered his 
location peculiarly acceptable to that section of the state, where a man of his 
intelligence, energy and knowledge of the Indian character, was much needed. 
In April of the succeeding year, 1786, a body of Indians crossed the Ohio and 
stole a number of horses on Bear-grass, and with their usual celerity of move- 
ment, recrossed the river, and presuming they were in no further danger of pursuit, 
leisurely made their way to their towns. Colonel Christian immediately raised 
a party of men, and crossed the Ohio in pursuit of the marauders. Having found 
their trail, by a rapid movement he overtook them about twenty miles from the 
river, and gave them battle. A bloody conflict ensued, in which Colonel Chris- 
tian and one man of his party were killed, and the Indian force totally destroyed.* 
His death created a strong sensation in Kentucky. He was brave, intelligent 
and remarkably popular. 

*Vide Marshall's History, vol. 1. page 228. This account varies in some of its particulars from 
that which appears in the biographical sketch of Lieutenant Governor Bullitt, who belonged to the 
party of Colonel Christian. See Bullitt county. 



CLARK county was established in 1793, by an act of the legis- 
lature, and named in honor of General GEORGE ROGERS CLARK. 
It is situated in the middle section of the State, and lies on the 
waters of the Kentucky and Licking rivers. It is bounded on 
the north by Bourbon county, on the east by Montgomery, on the 
south by the Kentucky river, which separates it from Madison 
and Estill counties, and on the west by Fayette county. One 
half of the western half of Clark county is very productive, the 
soil being as good as any in Kentucky ; a fourth of the county 
is very much broken, but fertile ; the remaining portion is very 
poor oak land. The exports consist principally of hemp, cattle, 
horses, mules, and hogs. 

The aggregate value of taxable property in Clark county in 
1846 was $5,904,832; number of acres of land in the county, 
167,055 ; average value per acre, $20,56 ; number of white males 
over twenty-one years of age, 1,666; number of children be- 
tween five and sixteen years old, 1,931. Population in 1830, 
13,052 in 1840, 10,302. 

The towns are Winchester, Kiddville, Colbysville, Schollville, 
and Webster. Winchester is the county seat, situated on the 
Lexington and Mount Sterling road, and forty five miles distant 
from Frankfort. It contains a Methodist, Presbyterian and Re- 
formed Baptist church, a public seminary, a female academy, 
twelve stores, six grocery stores, ten lawyers, six physicians, 
two hemp factories, and a large number of mechanical shops. It 
has a population of about 700 souls. The other villages, above 
named, are small, and contain but few inhabitants. 

Clark county was settled at a very early period in the history of Kentucky; it 
being separated from Boonsborough, the first point settled in the State, only by 
the Kentucky river, which forms the southern boundary of the county. Strodes 
Station, a point of considerable importance in the early Indian wars, was situated 
about two miles from Winchester, the present seat of justice. In the year 1780 
it was besieged by a large body of Indians, who attempted to cut off the supply 
of water from the garrison. But, foiled in this effort, the savages were repulsed 
and forced to retreat. In the pursuit which followed, a white man by the name 
of Van Swearingen, a man of noted courage, was killed. This was the only loss 
sustained by the garrison during the siege. 

When this county was first settled, some ancient corn-fields were discovered 
about twelve miles east of Winchester. It was supposed that these fields had 
been cultivated by the Indians, many years prior to the period of the first entrance 
of the whites into this territory. 

At the present time Clark county is noted for its fine stock, its highly culti- 
vated farms and beautiful grass pastures. Captain Isaac Cunningham, a citi- 
zen of this county, who died in 1842, was the pioneer of the grazing business in 
Kentucky, from which he amassed a large fortune. He was a man of great in- 
tegrity of character, an ardent patriot, and held in high esteem by all who knew 
him. At the battle of the Thames he commanded a company of Kentucky volun- 
teers, which did good service during the engagement. 

The two Howard's creeks in Clark county derived their names from the venera- 
ble John Howard, a well known citizen of Kentucky, who died some years ago 


in Fayette county. He was the father of the late Governor Benjamin Howard, 
and of the first wife of Robert Wickliffe, Sen'r., Esq. He held a pre-emption 
of one thousand acres of land at the mouth of each of these creeks. 

In this county repose the remains of two governors of Kentucky Charles 
Scott and the late James Clarke. Monuments have been erected over the graves 
of both by the legislature. 

Among the noted citizens of Clark, was the late venerable HUBBARD TAYLOR. 
He emigrated to the county at a very early period, was a senator for a number of 
years in the Kentucky legislature, and on several occasions was chosen as one of 
the presidential electors. He was distinguished for hi* Jfratriotism, his hospital- 
ity and public spirit. He died in the year 1842, beloved and mourned by all who 
knew him. 

General RICHARD HICKMAN, a lieutenant governor of the St. #, and acting go- 
vernor during the absence of Governor Shelby in the campaign jf 1813, was also 
a citizen of this county. He was highly .esteemed by his c. uiitrymen for his in- 
telligence and many virtues. 

Colonel WILLIAM SUDDUTH, was one of the earliest settlers in Clark county, 
and the last surviving member of the convention which framed the present con- 
stitution of Kentucky. He was a gallant soldier under Wayne in the campaign 
of 1793. For thirty years he was the county surveyor of Clark. He was a man 
of intelligence, with the manners of an accomplished gentleman. He died at the 
residence of one of his sons in Bath county, in the year 1845, having nearly at- 
tained his eightieth year. 

The Hon. CHILTON ALLAN, who for many years served as representative in 
congress from Kentucky, with a high reputation for ability and efficiency, is a 
citizen of this county. He is a profound lawyer, a statesman of enlarged and 
liberal views, a sound politician, a devoted patriot, and a man of remarkably 
pure and elevated moral character. 

Among the most distinguished citizens of Clark county was the Hon. JAMES 
CLARKE, late governor of the commonwealth. Our materials for a sketch of his 
life are exceedingly meagre, and we can attempt nothing more than a bare enu- 
meration of the most prominent incidents in his career. He was the son of 
Robert and Susan Clarke, and was born in 1779, in Bedford county, Virginia, 
near the celebrated Peaks of Otter. His father emigrated from Virginia to Ken- 
tucky at a very early period, and settled in Clark county, near the Kentucky 
river. The subject of this notice received the principal part of his education 
under Dr. Blythe, afterwards a professor in Transylvania university. He studied 
law with his brother, Christian Clarke, a very distinguished lawyer of Virginia. 
When he had qualified himself to discharge the duties of his profession, he re- 
turned to Kentucky, and commenced the practice of the law in Winchester, in 

He remained here, however, but * short time, before he set out in search of a 
more eligible situation, and traveled through what was then the far west, taking 
Vincennes and St. Louis in his route; but failing to find a place to suit his views, 
he returned to Winchester, where, by his unremitting attention to business, and 
striking displays of professional ability, he soon obtained an extensive and lucra- 
tive practice. 

At this period of his life, he was several times elected a member of the State 
legislature, in which body he soon attained a high and influential position. In 
1810, he was appointed a judge of the court of appeals, and acted in that, capacity 
for about two years. In 1812, he was elected to congress, and served from 
the 4th of March, 1813, until March, 1816. In 1817 he received an appointment 
as judge of the circuit court, for the judicial district in which he resided, which 
station he filled with great ability, and to the ofeneral satisfaction of the public, 
till the year 1824, when he resigned. During his term of service as judge, oc- 
curred that great and exciting struggle between the relief and anti-relief parties, 
which has left its traces on the political and social condition of Kentucky, in 
deep and indelible characters, to be seen even at the present day. In May, 1823, 
Mr. Clarke rendered an opinion in the Bourbon circuit court, in which he decided 


that the relief laws were unconstitutional. This decision produced great excite- 
ment, and was the cause of his being arraigned and impeached before the legis- 
lature. But, notwithstanding the temporary dissatisfaction it excited in the breasts 
of the relief party, there was probably no act of his life which inspired his fellow 
citizens with greater confidence in his integrity, firmness, independence, and pat- 
riotism, than this decision. It was given just before the election, and he must 
have foreseen the temporary injury it would inflict upon the party with which he 
acted, and which he regarded as the bulwark of the constitution. But his was a 
nature which knew not the possibility of making a compromise between his prin- 
ciples and policy. 

In 1825, he was elected to congress to fill the vacancy occasioned by Mr. Clay's 
appointment as secretary of state, and continued to represent the Fayette district 
in that body until 1831. In 1832, he was elected to the senate of Kentucky, 
and was chosen speaker in the place of Mr. Morehead, who was then acting as 
governor, in the place of Governor Breathitt, deceased. He was elected gover- 
nor of Kentucky in August, 1836, and died on the 27th of August, 1839, in his 
sixtieth year. 

Governor Clarke was endowed by nature with great strength of mind, and a fine 
vein of original wit. His literary attainments were respectable, ranking in that 
respect with most of his cotemporaries of the legal profession at that day. A 
fine person, a cheerful and social disposition, an easy address, and fascinating 
manners, made him the life of every circle in which he mingled. He was full of 
fun, fond of anecdotes, and could tell a story with inimitable grace. To these 
qualities, so well calculated to display the amiable traits of his character in their 
most attractive light, he added all those stern and manly virtues which inspire 
confidence and command respect. His death made a vacancy in the political and 
social circles of Kentucky, which was very sensibly felt and universally de- 

General GEORGE ROGERS CLARK, whose name is deservedly celebrated in the 
early history of Kentucky, and conspicuously prominent in the conquest and set- 
tlement of the whole west, was born in the county of Albemarle, in the State of 
Virginia, on the 19th of November, 1752. Of his early years and education, 
but little is known. In his youth, he engaged in the business of land surveying, 
which appears to have presented to the enterprising young men of that day, a 
most congenial and attractive field for the exercise of their energies. It is worthy 
of remark, that many of the most opulent and influential families of Kentucky 
were founded by men engaged in this pursuit. How long Clark continued in this 
vocation, is unknown. He commanded a company in Dunmore's war, and was 
engaged in the only active operation of the right wing of the invading army, 
against the Indians. At the close of this war, he was offered a commission in 
the English service, but, upon consultation with his friends, he was induced by 
the troubled aspect of the relations between the colonies and Great Britain, to 
decline the appointment. 

In the spring of 1775, he came to Kentucky, drawn hither by that love of ad- 
venture which distinguished him through life. He remained in Kentucky during 
the spring and summer of this year, familiarizing himself with the character of 
the people and the resources of the country, until the fall, when he returned to 
Virginia. During this visit, he was temporarily placed in command of the irreg- 
ular militia of the settlements ; but whether he held a commission is not known. 
In the spring of the following year (1776), he again came to Kentucky, with the 
intention of making it his permanent home ; and from this time forth, his name is 
closely associated with the progress of the western settlements in power and civ- 

His mind had been very early impressed with the immense importance of this 
frontier country to the security of the parent State of Virginia, as well as to the 
whole confederacy ; and his reflections on this subject led him to perceive the 
importance of a more thorough, organized, and extensive system of public de- 
fence, and a more regular plan of military operations, than the slender resources 
of the colonies had yet been able to effect. With the view of accomplishing 
this design, he had been in Kentucky but a few months, when he suggested to 
the settlers the propriety of convening a general assembly of the people at Har- 


rodstown (now Harrodsburgh), to take steps towards forming a more definite and 
certain connection with the government and people of Virginia, than as yet existed. 
The immediate necessity for this movement grew out of the memorable and well 
known conflict between Henderson & Co., and the legislature of Virginia, rela- 
tive to the disputed claim of jurisdiction over a large portion of the new territory. 
The excitement which arose out of this dispute, and the prevailing uncertainty 
whether the south side of Kentucky river appertained to Virginia or North Caro- 
lina, (the latter claiming by virtue of Henderson's purchase of the Cherokees at 
the treaty of Wataga), added very greatly to the perplexity of the settlers, and 
rendered it necessary that the disposition of Virginia should be distinctly ascer- 
tained. The proposed meeting was accordingly held at Harrodstown on the 6th 
of June, 1776, at which Clark and Gabriel Jones were chosen members of the 
assembly of Virginia. This, however, was not precisely the thing contemplated 
by Clark. He wished that the people should appoint agents, with general 
powers to negotiate with the government of Virginia, and in the event that that 
commonwealth should refuse to recognize the colonists as within its jurisdiction 
and under its protection, he proposed to employ the lands of the country as a 
fund to obtain settlers and establish an independent State. The election had, 
however, gone too far to change its object when Clark arrived at Harrodstown, 
and the gentlemen elected, although aware that the choice could give them no 
seat in the legislature, proceeded to Williamsburg, at that time the seat of gov- 
ernment. After suffering the most severe privations in their journey through the 
wilderness, the delegates found, on their arrival in Virginia, that the legislature 
had adjourned, whereupon Jones directed his steps to the settlements on Holston, 
and left Clark to attend to the Kentucky mission alone. 

He immediately waited on Governor Henry, then lying sick at his residence 
in Hanover county, to whom he stated the objects of his journey. These meeting 
the approbation of the governor, he gave Clark a letter to the executive council 
of the state. With this letter in his hand he appeared before the council, and 
after acquainting them fully with the condition and circumstances of the colony, 
he made application for five hundred weight of gun-powder for the defence of the 
various stations. But with every disposition to assist and promote the growth of 
these remote and infant settlements, the council felt itself restrained by the un- 
certain and indefinite state of the relations existing between the colonists and the 
state of Virginia, from complying fully with his demand. The Kentuckians had 
not yet been recognised by the legislature as citizens, and the proprietary claim- 
ants, Henderson & Co., were at this time exerting themselves to obtain from Vir- 
ginia, a relinquishment of her jurisdiction over the new territory. The council, 
therefore, could only offer to lend the gun-powder to the colonists as friends, not 
give it to them as fellow citizens. At the same time they required Clark to be 
personally responsible for its value, in the event the legislature should refuse to 
recognize the Kentuckians as citizens, and in the meantime to defray the expense 
of its conveyance to Kentucky. Upon these terms he did not feel at liberty to 
accept the proffered assistance. He represented to the council that the emissaries 
of the British were employing every means to engage the Indians in the war; 
that the people in the remote and exposed stations of Kentucky might be exter- 
minated for the want of a supply which he, a private individual, had at so much 
hazard and hardship sought for their relief, and that when this frontier bulwark 
was thus destroyed, the fury of the savages would burst like a tempest upon the 
heads of their own citizens. To these representations, however, the council 
remained deaf and inexorable ; the sympathy for the frontier settlers was deep, 
but the assistance already offered was a stretch of power, and they could go no 
farther. The keeper of the public magazine was directed to deliver the powder 
to Clark ; but having long reflected on the situation, prospects and resources of 
the new country, his resolution to reject the assistance on the proposed conditions, 
was made before he left the council chamber. He determined to repair to Ken- 
tucky, and as he had at first contemplated, exert the resources of the country for 
the formation of an independent state. He accordingly returned the order of the 
council in a letter, setting forth his reasons for declining to accept their powder 
on these terms, and intimating his design of applying for assistance elsewhere, 
adding, "that a country which was not worth defending, was not worth claiming." 
On the receipt of this letter the council recalled Clark to their presence, and an 


order was passed on the 23d of August, 1776, for the transmission of the gun- 
powder to Pittsburg, to be there delivered to Clark or his order, for the use of the 
people of Kentucky. This was the first act in that long and affectionate inter- 
change of good offices, which subsisted between Kentucky and her parent state 
for so many years ; and obvious as the reflection is, it may not be omitted, that on 
the successful termination of this negotiation, hung the connection between Vir- 
ginia and the splendid domain she afterwards acquired west of the Allegheny 

At the fall session of the legislature of Virginia, Messrs. Jones and Clark laid 
the Kentucky memorial before that body. They were of course not admitted to 
seats, though late in the session they obtained, in opposition to the exertions of 
Colonels Henderson and Campbell, the formation of the territory which now com- 
prises the present state of that name, into the county of Kentucky. Our first 
political organization was thus obtained through the sagacity, influence and exer- 
tions of George Rogers Clark, who must be ranked as the earliest founder of this 
commonwealth. This act of the Virginia legislature first gave it form and a 
political existence, and entitled it under the constitution of Virginia to a repre- 
sentation in the assembly, as well as to a judicial and military establishment. 

Having obtained these important advantages from their mission, they received 
the intelligence that the powder was still at Pittsburg, and they determined to 
take that point in their route home, and bring it with them. The country around 
Pittsburg swarmed with Indians, evidently hostile to the whites, who would no 
doubt seek to interrupt their voyage. These circumstances created a necessity 
for the utmost caution as well as expedition in their movements, and they accord- 
ingly hastily embarked on the Ohio with only seven boatmen. They were hotly 
pursued the whole way by Indians, but succeeded in keeping in advance until 
they arrived at the mouth of Limestone creek, at the spot where the city of Mays- 
ville now stands. They ascended this creek a short distance with their boat, and 
concealed their cargo at different places in the woods along its banks. They then 
turned their boat adrift, and directed their course to Harrodstown, intending to 
return with a sufficient escort to ensure the safe transportation of the powder to 
its destination. This in a short time was successfully effected, and the colonists 
were thus abundantly supplied with the means of defence against the fierce ene- 
mies who beset them on all sides. 

The space allotted to this brief sketch, will not admit of a detailed narrative 
of the adventures of Major Clark after his return to Kentucky. Let it suffice to 
say, that he was universally looked up to by the settlers as one of the master spirits 
of the time, and always foremost in the fierce conflicts and desperate deeds of 
those wild and thrilling days. 

Passing over that series of private and solitary adventures in which he em- 
barked after he returned from Virginia, and in which he appears to have taken a 
peculiar pleasure, but of which no particulars have been preserved, we shall pro- 
ceed at once to notice his successful expedition against the British posts of Kas- 
kaskia and Vincennes ; one of the most important events, if we estimate it by 
its consequences, immediate and remote, in the early history of the west. It was 
at the same time marked by incidents of romantic and thrilling interest, and a 
striking display of the qualities of courage, perseverance and fortitude, which 
bring to mind the heroic deeds of antiquity. 

The war in Kentucky previous to this time had been a true border war, and 
conducted in the irregular and desultory manner incident to that kind of hostili- 
ties. Nearly all the military operations of the period resembled more the preda- 
tory exploits of those sturdy cattle-drovers and stark moss-troopers of the Scottish 
Highlands, whose valorous achievements have been immortalized by the graphic 
pen of the author of Waverley, than the warfare of a civilized people. Every 
man fought, pretty much, " on his own hook" and waged the war in a fashion to 
suit himself. He selected his own ground, determined upon the time, place, and 
manner of attack, and brought the campaign to a close whenever his own incli- 
nations prompted. The war indeed was sustained, and its " sinews supplied,' 1 
by the adventurous spirit of private individuals. The solitary backwoodsman 
would sharpen his hunting knife, shoulder his rifle, and provide himself with a 
small quantity of parched corn as a substitute for bread, and thus equipped for 
service, start on an expedition into the Indian country, without beat of drum qj 


note of warning. Arrived on the hostile soil, he would proceed with the caution 
of a panther stealing on his prey, until he reached the neighborhood of a village, 
when concealing himself in the surrounding thickets, he would lie in wait until 
an opportunity presented of shooting an Indian and stealing a horse, when he 
would return to the cultivation of his farm and the ordinary pursuits of his busi- 
ness. Even those more ambitious enterprises which occasionally diversified this 
personal warfare, were the result rather of the spontaneous combination of pri- 
vate individuals, than of any movement by the state. The perseverance and gallan- 
try of the backwoodsman was left to sustain itself, with little assistance from the 
power of Virginia, at that time engaged in the tremendous struggle of the war 
of Independence, which demanded all her energies and taxed all her resources. 
The State had not disposable means to act on so remote a frontier, nor does she 
appear to have been distinctly aware of the important diversion of the Indian 
force, which might be made by supporting the exertions of Kentucky. As little 
did she perceive the rich temptations offered to her military ambition in the Bri- 
tish posts in the west. Yet every Indian engaged on the frontier of Kentucky, 
was a foe taken from the nearer frontier of the parent state. And in those remote 
and neglected garrisons of Kaskaskia, Vincennes and Detroit, was to be found 
the source of those Indian hostilities, which staid the advancing tide of emigra- 
tion, and deluged the whole west in the blood of women and children. 

These combined views, however, began to acquire weight with the Virginia 
statesmen, with the progress of the revolution, and the rapid increase of emigra- 
tion to Kentucky ; and they were particularly aided and enforced by the impres- 
sive representations of Major Clark. To his mind they had been long familiar, 
and his plans were already matured. He was thoroughly acquainted with the 
condition, relations and resources of the country, and with that instinctive genius 
which stamps him as the most consummate of the western commanders, he saw 
at a glance the policy required to develop the nascent strength and advantages 
of the infant settlements. At a glance, he discovered what had so long escaped 
the perspicacity of the Virginia statesmen, that the sources of the Indian devasta- 
tions were Detroit, Vincennes and Kaskaskia. It was by the arms and clothing 
supplied at these military stations that the merciless ferocity of these blood 
thirsty warriors was stimulated to the commission of those fearful ravages 
which " drenched the land to a mire." If they could be taken, a counter influ- 
ence would be established over the Indians, and the streams of human blood, 
which deluged the fields of Kentucky, would be dried up. 

So strongly had the idea of reducing these posts taken possession of the mind 
and imagination of Major Clark, that in the summer of 1777, he dispatched two 
spies to reconnoitre and report their situation. On their return they brought intel- 
ligence of great activity on the part of the garrisons, who omitted no opportunity 
to promote and encourage the Indian depredations on the Kentucky frontier. They 
reported further, that although the British had essayed every art of misrepresen- 
tation, to prejudice the French inhabitants against the Virginians and Kentuck- 
ians, by representing these frontier people, as more shocking barbarians than the 
savages themselves, still there were to be seen strong traces of affection for the 
Americans among many of the inhabitants. 

In December, 1777, Major Clark submitted to the executive of Virginia a plan 
for the reduction of these posts. The result was a full approbation of the scheme, 
and the governor and council entered into the undertaking so warmly that every 
preliminary arrangement was soon made. Clark received two sets of instruc- 
tions : one public, directing him to proceed to Kentucky for its defence ; the 
other secret, ordering an attack on the British post at Kaskaskia. Twelve hun- 
dred pounds were advanced to defray the expenses of the expedition, and orders 
issued to the Virginia commandant at fort Pitt, to supply Clark with ammunition, 
boats, and all other necessary equipments. The force destined for the expedition, 
consisting, after a rigid selection, of only four companies, rendezvoused at Corn 
Island, opposite the falls of the Ohio, and having fully completed their prepara- 
tions, they embarked in boats on the Ohio. Landing on an island at the mouth 
of the Tennessee river, they encountered a party of hunters who had recently 
came from Kaskaskia, and from them they obtained the most important intelli- 
gence relative to the state of things at that post. They reported that the garrison 
was commanded by one M. Rocheblave ; that the militia were kept in a high 


state of discipline ; that spies were stationed on the Mississippi river, and all In- 
dian hunters directed to keep a sharp look out for the Kentuckians. They stated 
further that the fort which commanded the town was kept in order as a place of 
retreat, but without a regular garrison, and the military defences were attended to 
as a matter of form, rather than from any belief in its necessity to guard against an 
attack. The hunters thought that by a sudden surprise the place might be easily 
captured, and they offered their services as guides, which were accepted. The 
boats were dropped down to a point on the Illinois shore, a little above the place 
where fort Massac was afterwards built, and there concealed, and the little army 
took up its line of march through the wilderness. Their commander marched 
at their head, sharing in all respects the condition of his men. On the evening 
of the 4th of July, 1778, the expedition arrived in the neighborhood of the town, 
where it lay until dark, when the march was continued. That night the town 
and fort were surprised and captured without the effusion of a drop of blood. M. 
Rocheblave, the British governor, was taken in his chamber, but very few of his 
public papers were secured, as they were secreted or destroyed by his wife, whom 
the Kentuckians were too polite to molest. In the course of a few days, Clark 
had, by his wise and prudent policy, entirely dissipated the alarm, and gained 
the affections of the French inhabitants, and his conquest was thus confirmed, 
and the ascendency of the Virginia government firmly rooted in the feelings of 
the people. Having effected this most desirable revolution in the sentiments of 
the inhabitants, he next turned his attention to the small French village of Ca- 
hokia, situated about sixty miles higher up the Mississippi. He accordingly 
dispatched Major Bowman, with his own and part of another company, to effect 
the reduction of this small post, at that time a place of considerable trade, and a 
depot for the distribution of arms and ammunition to the Indians, a considerable 
body of whom were encamped in the neighborhood when the Americans ap- 
proached. The expedition was accompanied by several Kaskaskia gentlemen, 
who volunteered their services to assist in the reduction of the place. The expe- 
dition reached the town without being discovered. The surprise and alarm of the 
inhabitants was great, but when the Kaskaskia gentlemen narrated what had oc- 
curred at their own village, the general consternation was converted into hurras 
for freedom and the Americans. The people took the oath of allegiance, and in 
a few days the utmost harmony prevailed. 

The expedition thus far had met with full success, but Vincennes still remained 
in the possession of the British, and until it should share the fate of Kaskaskia, 
Clark felt that there was no safety for his new conquest. His uneasiness was 
great. His situation was critical. His force was too small to garrison Kaskas- 
kia and Cahokia, and leave him a sufficient power to attempt the reduction of 
Vincennes by open assault. At length he communicated his perplexity to a 
Catholic priest, M. Gibault, who agreed to attempt to bring the inhabitants over 
whom he had pastoral charge into the views of the American commander. This, 
through the agency and influence of the priest, was effected with little difficulty. 
The inhabitants threw off their allegiance to the British, the garrison was over- 
powered and expelled, and the American flag displayed from the ramparts of the 

Having thus succeeded beyond his most sanguine expectations, in his designs 
against the power of the British in the west, Clark next turned his attention to 
conciliate the various Indian tribes inhabiting this region. This great purpose, 
after a long and tedious series of negotiations, in which the character of the 
American commander unfolded itself under its most powerful aspect, was finally 
accomplished, the hostility of many of the tribes pacified, and their prejudices 
disarmed. The summary nature of this sketch will not admit of a particular ac- 
count of the incidents attending this great enterprise, though the narrative would 
be replete with interest, as it was in this wild and dangerous diplomacy that the 
genius of Colonel Clark displayed its most commanding attributes. Success in 
this politic intercourse with the untutored savage of the wilderness, depends far 
more on the personal qualities of the negotiator, than on the justice of the cause 
or the plausibility of his reasoning. The American Indian has an unbounded 
admiration for all those high and heroic virtues which enter into the character of 
the successful warrior, and the terror of Clark's name had spread far and wide. 
To these advantages he added that of a thorough knowledge of the Indian char- 


acter, in all its peculiarities, its strength, and its weakness. He knew when to 
be mild and conciliating when to be stern and uncompromising. The tact and 
promptitude with which he adapted his conduct to the exigency of the occasion 
has become proverbial. His address was wonderful the fertility of his resource* 
inexhaustible, and his influence among those wild and unsophisticated children 
of the woods grew so predominant, that they gave whate'er he asked. 

Colonel Clark now began to entertain great fears for the safety of Vincennes. 
No intelligence had been received from that post for a long time ; but on the 29th 
of January 1779, Colonel Vigo brought intelligence that Governor Hamilton of 
Detroit had marched an expedition against the place in December, and again 
reduced the inhabitants and the fort, and re-established the British power. The 
expedition had been fitted out on a large scale, with the view of recapturing 
Kaskaskia, and making an assault along the whole line of the Kentucky frontier. 
But owing to the advanced period of the season, Governor Hamilton had post- 
poned the further execution of this grand scheme of conquest until spring, when 
he contemplated reassembling his forces. 

Having received this timely intelligence of the British governor's designs, Col- 
onel Clark with characteristic promptitude and decision, determined to anticipate 
him, and strike the first blow. He accordingly made immediate preparation for 
an expedition against Vincennes. He commenced his march through the wilder- 
ness with a force of one hundred and seventy- five men, on the 7th of February, 
having previously dispatched Captain Rogers with a company of forty-six men 
and two four-pounders, in a boat, with orders to force their way up the Wabash,. 
station themselves a few miles below the mouth of White river, suffer nothing to 
pass, and wait for further orders. For seven days the land expedition pursued 
its toilsome course over the drowned lands of Illinois, exposed to every privation 
that could exhaust the spirits of men, when it arrived at the Little Wabash. But 
now the worst part of the expedition was still before them. At this point the 
forks of the stream are three miles apart, and the opposite heights of land five miles 
distant even in the ordinary state of the water. When the expedition arrived, the 
intervening valley was covered with water three feet in depth. Through this 
dreadful country the expedition was compelled to make its way until the 18th, 
when they arrived so near Vincennes that they could hear the morning and eve- 
ning guns at the fort. On the evening of the same day they encamped within 
nine miles of the town, below the mouth of the Embarrass river. Here they were 
detained until the 20th, having no means of crossing the river; but on the 20th the 
guard brought to and captured a boat, in which the men and arms were safely 
transported to the other shore. There was still, however, an extensive sheet of 
water to be passed, which on sounding proved to be up to the arm-pits. When 
this discovery was made, the whole detachment began to manifest signs of alarm 
and despair, which Colonel Clark observing, took a little powder in his hand, 
mixed some water with it, and having blackened his face, raised an Indian war 
whoop and marched into the water. The effect of the example was electrical, 
and the men followed without a murmur. In this manner, and singing in chorus, 
the troops made their way through the water, almost constantly waist deep, until 
they arrived within sight of the town. The immense exertion required to effect 
this march may not be described. The difficulty was greatly heightened by there 
being no timber to afford support to the wearied soldiers, who were compelled to 
force their way through the stagnant waters, with no aid but their own strength. 
When they reached the dry land the men were so exhausted, that many of them 
fell, leaving their bodies half immersed in the water. Having captured a man 
who was shooting ducks in the neighborhood of the town, by him Clark sent a 
letter to the inhabitants, informing them that he should take possession of the town 
that night. So much did this letter take the town by surprise, that the expedition 
was thought to be from Kentucky ; in the condition of the waters they did not 
dream that it could be from Illinois. The inhabitants could not have been more 
astonished if the invaders had arisen out of the earth. 

On the evening of the 23d the detachment set off to take possession of the town. 
After marching and countermarching around the elevations on the plain, and dis- 
playing several sets of colors, to convey to the garrison as exaggerated an idea as 
possible of their numbers, they took position on the heights back of the village. 
The fire upon the fort immediately commenced, and was kept up with spirit. Our 


men would lie within thirty yards of the fort, untouched by its guns, from the 
awkward elevation of its platforms; while no sooner was a port-hole opened than 
a dozen rifles would be directed at it, cutting down every thing in the way. The 
garrison became discouraged, and could not stand to their guns, and in the eve- 
ning of the next day the British commandant finding his cannon useless, and 
apprehensive of the result of being taken at discretion, sent a flag asking a truce 
of three days. This was refused, and on the 24th of February, 1779, the fort was 
surrendered and the garrison became prisoners of war. On the 25th it was taken 
possession of by the Americans, the stars and stripes were again hoisted, and 
thirteen guns fired to celebrate the victory. 

In a few days Colonel Clark returned to Kaskaskia. Soon after this Louisville 
was founded, and he made it his head-quarters. In 1780 he built Fort Jefferson, 
on the Mississippi. In the course of this year he led an expedition against the 
Indians of Ohio, the occasion of which was as follows : on the 1st of June, 1780, 
the British commander at Detroit, assembled six hundred Canadians and Indians, 
for a secret expedition under Colonel Byrd, against the settlements in Kentucky. 
This force, accompanied by two field pieces, presented itself on the 22d, before 
Ruddell's station, which was obliged to capitulate. Soon after Martin's station 
shared the same fate, and the inhabitants, loaded with the spoil of their own dwell- 
ings, were hurried off towards Canada. 

A prompt retaliation was required, and when Col. Clark called on the militia 
of Kentucky for volunteers to accompany his regiment against the Indians, they 
flocked to his standard without delay. The point of rendezvous was the mouth 
of Licking river, where the forces assembled. They were supplied with artillery, 
conveyed up the river from the Falls. When all assembled, the force amounted 
to near a thousand men. The secrecy and dispatch which had ever attended the 
movements of this efficient commander, continued to mark his progress on this 
occasion. The Indian town was reached before the enemy had received any 
intimation of their approach. A sharp conflict ensued, in which seventeen of the 
savages were slain, with an equal loss on the part of the whites. The Indians 
then fled, the town was reduced to ashes, and the gardens and fields laid waste. 
Col. Clark returned to the Ohio and discharged the militia, and the Indians, 
reduced to the necessity of hunting for the support of their families, gave the 
whites no farther trouble that season. 

For a long time the ever active mind of Clark had been revolving a scheme for 
the reduction of the British postal Detroit, and in December of the year 1780, he 
repaired to Richmond, to urge the government to furnish him with means to exe- 
cute this long cherished design. His views were approved ; but before the neces- 
sary arrangements could be completed, a British force from New York, under 
Arnold, carried hostilities into the heart of the State. Clark took a temporary 
command under Baron Steuben, and participated in the active operations of that 
officer against the marauding traitor. 

After several months had been spent in indefatigable efforts to raise a force of 
two thousand men, for the enterprise against Detroit, the several corps destined 
for the service were designated, and ordered to rendezvous on the 15th of March, 

1781, at the falls of the Ohio, and Clark was raised to the rank of a brigadier 
general ; but unexpected and insuperable difficulties arose, and the ardent genius 
of the commander was confined to defensive operations. This appears to have 
been the turning point in the fortunes o the hardy warrior. He had set his heart 
on destroying the British influence throughout the whole North-Western Terri- 
tory. Could he have had the means which he required, his advancement in rank 
would no doubt have been gratifying; but without a general's command, a gen- 
eral's commission was of no value. Dangers and hardships would have been 
disregarded ; but with his small force to be stationed on the frontier to repel the 
inroads of a few predatory bands of Indians, when he was eager to carry the war 
to the lakes, was more than he could bear, and it preyed upon his spirit. From 
this time forth his influence sensibly decreased, and the innate force and energy 
of his character languished and degenerated. 

He was a lion chained, but he was still a lion, and so the enemy found him in 

1782. When the news of the disastrous battle of the Blue Licks reached him, he 
took immediate measures to rouse the country from that benumbed torpor of an- 
guish and despondency in which this great calamity had plunged it, and to carry 


the war once more into the enemy's country. In September, a thousand moun- 
ted riflemen assembled on the banks of the Ohio, at the mouth of Licking, and 
moved against the Indian towns on the Miami and Scioto. The Indians fled 
before them, and not more than twelve were killed or taken. Five of their towns 
were reduced to ashes, and all of their provisions destroyed. The effect of this 
expedition was such that no formidable party of Indians ever after invaded Ken- 

In 1786, a new army was raised to march against the Indians on the Wabash, 
and Clark, at the head of a thousand men, again entered the Indian territory. 
This expedition proved unfortunate, and was abandoned. 

Several years elapsed before the name of General Clark again appeared in con- 
nection with public affairs. When Genet, the French minister, undertook to 
raise and organize a force in Kentucky for a secret expedition against the Spanish 
possessions on the Mississippi, George Rogers Clark accepted a commission as 
major general in the armies of France, to conduct the enterprise. But, before the 
project was put in execution, a counter revolution occurred in France, Genet was 
recalled, and Clark's commission annulled. Thus terminated his public career. 

General Clark was never married. He was long in infirm health, and severely 
afflicted with a rheumatic affection, which terminated in paralysis, and deprived 
him of the use of one limb. After suffering under this disease for several years, 
it finally caused his death in February, 1818. He died and was buried at Locust 
Grove, near Louisville. 


CLAY county was formed in 1806, and named in honor of Gen- 
eral GREEN CLAY. It lies on the south fork of the Kentucky river 
and is bounded north by Owsley ; east by Breathitt and Perry ; 
south by Knox ; and west by Laurel. The face of the country is 
generally hilly and mountainous the principal products, corn, 
wheat and grass ; the latter growing spontaneously, in great 
abundance, on the mountains and in the valleys. Coal is abun- 
dant, and is used generally by the inhabitants for fuel. Salt is 
manufactured at fifteen furnaces in the county, producing it is 
supposed, from 150,000 to 200,000 bushels per annum, and of 
the very best quality. About nine miles from Manchester, there 
is a spring which produces an abundant supply of gas. 

The taxable property in Clay county in 1846, was assessed at 
$513,303; number of acres in the county, 154,370; average 
value per acre, $1,55; number of white males over twenty-one 
years of age, 738 ; children between five and sixteen years of 
age, 1,180. Population in 1830, 3,549 in 1840, 4,607. 

MANCHESTER is the seat of justice, and only town in the county 
about eighty miles from Frankfort. It is situated near Goose 
creek, and contains the usual public buildings, one seminary, one 
Methodist church, one Reformed church, two taverns, two stores, 
two groceries, two lawyers, two physicians, and seven or eight 
mechanics' shops. Population 100. Named for the great manu- 
facturing town of England. 

General GREEN CLAY, in honor of whom this county was named, was born in 
Powhattan county, Virginia, on the 14th August, 1757. He was the son of 
Charles Clay, and descended from John Clay, a British grenadier, who came to 


Virginia during Bacon's rebellion, and declined returning when the king's troops 
were sent back. Whether this ancestor was from England or Wales, is not cer- 
tainly known, but from the thin skin and ruddy complexion of his descendants, 
the presumption is that Wales was his birth place. Green Clay came to Ken- 
tucky when but a youth. His education was exceedingly limited. To read, write, 
and cypher, a slight knowledge of the principles of grammar, together with the 
rudiments of surveying, constituted his entire stock of scholastic learning. 
With some men, richly endowed by nature, these are advantages sufficient to in- 
sure distinction, or to command a fortune, both of which the subject of this notice 
effected. The first few years after his arrival in Kentucky, were spent in exam- 
ining the country, and aiding to expel the savages. He then entered the office of 
James Thompson, a commissioned surveyor, where he more thoroughly studied the 
principles and acquired the art of surveying. In executing the work assigned 
him by his principal, who soon made him a deputy, he became minutely acquainted 
with the lands in the upper portion of the (then) county of Kentucky. The 
power (at that time unrestrained), to enter and survey lands, wherever ignorance 
of a prior location, or a wish to lay a warrant might incline, rendered the titles 
to land exceedingly doubtful and insecure. Many entries were made on the same 
land by different individuals, producing expensive litigation, and often occasion- 
ing the ruin of one of the parties. Entering and surveying lands at an early day 
was attended with great danger. The country one vast wilderness, with the ex- 
ception of a few forts which at rare intervals dotted its surface, was infested by 
innumerable hordes of savage warriors, wiley and full of stratagem, breathing 
vengeance against the invaders rendered the location of lands a perilous employ- 
ment. Surveying parties consisted generally of not more than four the sur- 
veyor, two chain carriers and a marker hence more reliance was placed in cau- 
tion and vigilance than in defence by arms. 

Clay soon established a character for judgment, industry and enterprise, 
which drew to him a heavy business. His memory of localities was remarka- 
ble, and enabled him to revisit any spot he had ever seen, without difficulty. His 
position in the office his access to books his retentive memory his topogra- 
phical knowledge enabled him to know when lands were unappropriated. 
Hence his services were much sought, by all who wished to locate lands in the re- 
gion of country where he resided. Whilst the great body of land in Kentucky 
was being appropriated, it was the custom for the holders of warrants to give 
one half to some competent individual to enter and survey the quantity called 
for by the warrant. Much of this business was thrown into Clay's hands ; and 
he thus acquired large quantities of land. He also applied all his slender re- 
sources to increase this estate. An anecdote is related which evinces the high 
estimation in which he held this species of estate, and the sagacity and foresight 
of the young surveyor. Having gone to Virginia, soon after the surrender of 
Cornwallis, at a time when the continental paper money was so depreciated that 
five hundred dollars were asked for a bowl of rum-toddy, he sold his riding horse 
to a French officer for twenty-seven thousand dollars of the depreciated currency, 
and invested it in lands. The lands thus purchased, are at this day worth half a 
million of dollars. 

After the land in the middle and upper parts of the State had been generally 
entered and appropriated, Clay went below, and on the Ohio and Mississippi rivers 
entered and surveyed large tracts of land for some gentlemen of Virginia. These 
surveys were made at a time when the Indians were in the exclusive occupancy of 
those regions, and so perilous was the business that his chain carriers and marker 
deserted him, without notice, before his work was entirely completed. Some of 
his field notes had become defaced, and after being thus abandoned by his com- 
panions, he was detained some weeks, revisiting the corners and other objects to 
renew and finish his notes. His danger in this lone undertaking was great; but 
notwithstanding all difficulties, so accurately did he accomplish his work, that 
subsequent surveyors have readily traced the lines, and found the corner trees and 
other objects called for. During this period he traveled mostly in the night, and 
slept during the day in thick cane brakes, hollow logs, and the tops of trees. 
Notwithstanding his heavy engagements in the land business, he devoted several 
years of his life to politics. Before the erection of Kentucky into a State, he 
was elected a delegate to the general assembly of Virginia. He was a member 


of the convention which formed the present constitution of Kentucky. After the 
admission of Kentucky into the union, he represented Madison county many 
years in each branch of the legislature. He took a prominent and leading part 
in all the important legislative measures of his day. The records of the country 
bear abundant evidence of his great industry, strict attention, capacious intellect, 
and uniform patriotism. He was particularly observant of the local and personal 
interests of his immediate constituents, without permitting them to interfere with 
his general duties as a law maker and statesman. When the last war between 
Great Britain and the United States was declared, he was a major general 
in the militia of Kentucky. Determined to lend his service to his country, in 
this, her second struggle for independence, he adjusted his private affairs pre- 
paratory to an absence from home. After the defeat of General Winchester, 
and the wanton butchery of our troops, who had surrendered under promise 
of safety and good treatment, the first call for volunteers was responded to 
from Kentucky, who had been a principal sufferer in that bloody catastrophe, by 
a general rush to the scene of hostilities. It was necessary to succor fort Meigs, 
and reinforce General Harrison, to enable him to retake Detroit and invade Can- 
ada. For this emergency Kentucky furnished three thousand troops, and placed 
them under the command of General Green Clay, with the rank of brigadier 
general. General Clay made all haste to the scene of action, and arrived at 
fort Meigs on the 4th of May, 1813, cutting his way through the enemy's lines 
into the fort. It does not consist with the character of this work to narrate the 
incidents attending this celebrated siege. They belong to the public history of 
the country, where they may be found related at large. Suffice it to say, that 
General Clay inspired General Harrison with such confidence in his eminent mil- 
itary abilities, that when that great warrior left fort Meigs, he placed that post 
under the command of General Clay. In the autumn of 1813, the garrison was 
besieged by a force of fifteen hundred British and Canadians, and five thousand 
Indians under Tecumseh ; but fearing to attempt its capture by storm, and failing 
in all their stratagems to draw the garrison from their entrenchments, the enemy 
soon raised the siege. After this, nothing of special interest occurred until the 
troops of the garrison were called out to join the army prepared for the invasion 
of Canada. The term of service of the Kentuckians expiring about this time, 
they were discharged ; but General Clay accompanied the army as far as Detroit, 
when he returned to his residence in Madison county. He devoted the remaining 
years of his life to agricultural pursuits, and the regulation of his estate. 

General Clay was more robust than elegant in person five feet eleven inches 
in height strong and active of remarkable constitution rarely sick, and capa- 
ble of great toil submitting to privations without a murmur. No country ever 
contained, according to its population, a greater number of distinguished men 
than Kentucky. At an early day, and among the most distinguished, General 
Clay was a man of mark. He was a devoted husband a kind and affectionate 
father a pleasant neighbor and a good master. He died at his residence on the 
31st of October, 1826, in the seventy-second year of his age. 


CLINTON county was formed in 1835, from Wayne and Cumber- 
land, and called for Governor DE WITT CLINTON, of New York. It 
is situated in the southern part of the State, and bounded on the 
north by Russell, east by Wayne, south by the Tennessee line, 
and west by Cumberland. Albany is the seat of justice, about 
126 miles from Frankfort. 

The taxable property in Clinton, as given in the auditor's re- 
port for 1846, is $445,909 ; number of acres of land in the county 


86,610 ; average value per acre, $2,68 ; number of white males 
in the county over twenty-one years of age, 739; number of 
children between five and sixteen years old, 1,235. Population 
in 1840, 3,863. 

ALBANY, the county seat, contains a court-house and other pub- 
lic buildings, a United Baptist church, one school, three stores, 
two taverns, three lawyers, two doctors, fifteen mechanics' shops, 
and one hundred and thirty inhabitants. Seventy- Six is a small 
village, containing a lawyer, post office, tannery, saw and grist 
mill, and twenty -five inhabitants. 

A spur of the Cumberland mountain, called Poplar mountain, penetrates this 
county, and terminates about two miles west of its centre. In its windings, this 
mountain makes a beautiful curve, and the valley on the eastern side and within 
the curve, called Stockton's valley, is fertile limestone land. The elevation of 
Poplar mountain above the valley is from one thousand to fifteen hundred feet. 
Coal in abundance, and of the best quality, is found in the mountain, in strata 
of about four feet. On the top of this mountain, about four miles from Albany, 
there are three chalybeate springs, which have been visited more or less for eight 
or ten years. These waters, combined with the purity of the atmosphere, have 
proved of immense benefit to invalids who have resorted there for their health. 
From these mountain springs, a most extensive and magnificent view of the sur- 
rounding country is presented. On a clear morning the fog seems to rise on the 
water courses in the distance, and stand just above the trees, when the eye can 
trace the beautiful Cumberland river in its windings for at least one hundred 
miles, and may distinctly mark the junction of its tributaries, in a direct line, for 
thirty miles. The springs are about ten or twelve miles from the Cumberland, 
and it is believed that, in the hands of an enterprising proprietor, they would 
soon become a place of great resort. The elevation of the mountain, and the 
consequent purity of the atmosphere the beauty and magnificence of the scenery 
and prospect daily presented to the eye of the visitor, combined with the medici- 
nal virtues of the water, a good host, and intelligent and refined association, 
would make these springs a most desirable point for a summer excursion. 

On Indian creek, about three miles from the mountain springs, there is a per- 
pendicular fall of ninety feet. Above the great falls, for the distance of about 
two hundred yards, the fall of the stream is gradual, and several fine mills have 
been erected on it. There are three large springs in the county : one on the 
south, and two at Albany, which send forth volumes of water sufficiently large to 
turn a grist mill or other machinery. Wolf river runs through a part of the 
county, and the Cumberland touches it on the north-west. The face of the coun- 
try is undulating in some portions of the county ; in others, hilly and broken. 
Besides coal, iron ore abounds, and plaster of Paris, it is reported, has been re- 
cently discovered in the hills. 

DE WITT CLINTON, whose name this county bears, was a native of New 
York, and one of the most distinguished men in the United States. He was 
born at Little Britain, in Orange county, on the 2d of March, 1769. He was 
educated at Columbia college, and studied law with the Hon. Samuel Jones. He 
early imbibed a predilection for political life, and the first office he held was that 
of private secretary to his uncle George Clinton, then governor of New York. 
In 1797, Mr. Clinton was elected a member of the New York legislature, where 
he espoused the political sentiments of the republican or democratic party. Two 
years after, he was elected to the State senate. In 1801, he received the appoint- 
ment of United States' senator, to fill a vacancy, where he served for two sessions. 
After that period, he was chosen mayor of New York, and remained in this po- 
sition, with an intermission of but two years, until 1815. In 1817, he was 
elected, almost unanimously, governor of his native State the two great parties 
having combined for the purpose of raising him to that dignity. He was re- 
elected in 1820, but declined a candidacy in 1822. In 1824, he was again nomi- 
nated and elected to the office of governor, and in 1826 was re-elected by a large 


majority. He died suddenly, while sitting in his library, on the llth of Febru- 
ary, 1828, before completing his last term of office. Mr. Clinton was the pro- 
jector and the active and untiring friend of the canal system of New York, 
which has been instrumental in adding so largely to the wealth and population 
of that great State. He was a man of very superior literary attainments exten- 
sively versed in the physical sciences, and a fine classical and belles-lettres 
scholar. He was a member of most of the literary and scientific institutions of 
the United States, and an honorary member of many of the learned societies of 
Great Britain and the continent of Europe. His moral character was excellent, 
and his personal appearance commanding, being tall and finely proportioned. 


CRITTENDEN county was formed in 1842, and named for the Hon. 
JOHN J. CRITTENDEN. It is situated in the western part of the 
State, on the Ohio river -bounded on the north by that river, east 
by Hopkins, south by Caldwell, and west by Livingston. Coal 
abounds in the county, and lead and iron ores are found in inex- 
haustible quantities. In the vicinity of the mines the surface is 
hilly, but the greater portion of the county is level or gently un- 
dulating, and very productive. The principal articles of export 
are coal, tobacco, corn, wheat, oats, and pork. 

The taxable property in 1846 was valued at $666,014 ; num- 
ber of acres of land in the county, 162,960 ; average value, $2,09; 
number of white males over twenty-one years of age, 948 ; num- 
ber of children between the ages of five and sixteen years, 1,316. 

MARION, the seat of justice for Crittenden, contains a new 
brick court-house and other public buildings, six stores and gro- 
ceries, one tavern, two houses of entertainment, four lawyers, 
three doctors, and four mechanics' shops population 120. Or- 
ganized in 1842, and named in honor of General Francis Marion. 
Clemcntsburg is a very small village, situated on the Ohio river. 

JOHN JORDAN CRITTENDKK, in honor of whom this county was named, waa 
born in the county of Woodford, within a few miles of the town of Versailles, on 
the 10th of September, 1786. He is the son of John Crittenden, a revolutionary 
officer, who emigrated to Kentucky soon after the conclusion of the war. The 
character of the father may be judged of from the virtues of the children; and 
applying this rule to the present instance, no man could wish a prouder eulogium 
than is due to the elder Mr. Crittenden. His four sons, John, Thomas, Robert, 
and Henry, were all distinguished men the three first were eminent at the bar, 
and in public life; and the last, who devoted himself to agricultural pursuits, was 
nevertheless so conspicuous for talent that his countrymen insisted on their right 
occasionally to withdraw him from the labors of the farm to those of the public 
councils. They were all remarkable for those personal qualities that constitute the 
perfect gentleman. Brave and gallant as the sire from whom they descended, 
accomplished in mind and manners, men without fear and without reproach, they 
have made their name a part and parcel of the glory of this commonwealth. 

Of the early boyhood of Mr. Crittenden, there is but little that needs to be re- 
corded in as hurried a sketch as this must necessarily be. He received as good 
an education as could be obtained in the Kentucky schools of that day, and com- 
pleted his scholastic studies at Washington academy, in Virginia, and at the 
college of William and Mary, in the same State. On his return to Kentucky, 


he became a student of law in the office of the honorable George M. Bibb, and 
under the care of that renowned jurist, he became thoroughly prepared for the 
practice of his profession. At that period the Green River country was the at- 
tractive field for the enterprize of the State, affording to the youth of Kentucky 
similar inducements to those that the west still continues to offer to the citizens 
of the older States. Mr. Crittenden commenced the practice of the law in Rus- 
sellville, in the midst of a host of brilliant competitors. He went there unknown 
to fame he left it with a fame as extended as the limits of this great nation. 
All the honors of his profession were soon his, and while his accurate and thorough 
knowledge of the law gained for him hosts of clients, his brilliant oratory filled 
the land with his praise, and the pride of that section of the State demanded that 
he should serve in the legislative assembly. He was accordingly elected to the 
legislature from the county of Logan, in 1811 ; and that noble county conferred 
the same honor upon him, in six consecutive elections. In 1817, and while a re- 
presentative from Logan, he was elected speaker of the house of representatives, 
having thus attained the highest distinction in the popular branch of the legisla- 
ture of his native State. That same honest pride which had impelled the 
Green River people to press him into public life, had spread throughout the State, 
and the people of Kentucky resolved to place him where the eyes of the nation 
might be upon him confident that he would win honor for himself and advance 
the fame of those he represented. He was accordingly, in 1817, elected a sena- 
tor in the congress of the United States, and although the youngest member of 
that body, no sooner had occasion presented, when it was meet for him to speak, 
than by the universal acclaim of the American people, he was hailed as among the 
foremost of our orators as a fit colleague for Henry Clay himself and as one 
who must take rank with our ablest statesmen. His private affairs requiring 
his unremitted attention, he withdrew from this theatre where he was winning 
golden opinions from all, to enter more vigorously upon the practice of his pro- 
fession. In order that he might be enabled to do this in the most favorable man- 
ner, he removed to Frankfort, in 1819, at which place the federal court and supreme 
court of the State are held. But here, again, the same popular love and enthu- 
siasm followed him, and he was compelled to yield a reluctant assent to the 
wishes of his friends, who desired him to serve them in the legislature. He was 
elected from Franklin, in 1825 a period memorable in the history of Kentucky. 
In the Old and New Court controversy, no man occupied a more conspicuous 
point than Mr. Crittenden, and as the advocate of the laws and constitution of 
Kentucky, and in the maintenance of a sound private and public faith, no man 
was more distinguished. He was three times elected to the legislature from 
Franklin, and during one of the periods, he was again chosen speaker of the 
house of representatives. 

The troubles of that period having subsided, and the public service not requiring 
the sacrifice of his time and business, he again returned to private life, but was 
permitted a very short respite from the political arena ; for, in 1835, he was once 
more sent to the senate of the United States, and held the office by re-election until 
the coming in of the administration of President Harrison. By that patriot presi- 
dent he was appointed attorney general of the United States, and the appoint- 
ment was hailed by men of all parties as the most appropriate that could have 
been made. The melancholy death of the president brought into power an admin- 
istration that forfeited the respect of honorable minds. Mr. Crittenden left it, 
and resigned his office in a note which he sent to the President, that has been 
considered an admirable specimen of the manner in which a lofty mind can retire 
from place, when its possession cannot be held with self respect. But only a 
few months had elapsed before we find him again in the Senate of the United 
States, by another election from Kentucky, where he now stands, unrivalled in 
debate the acknowledged leader of the great whig party, in an assemblage 
where the talent of a nation is concentrated. He has been five times elected to 
the senate of the United States from Kentucky an honor of which no other cit- 
izen can boast. The history of congress, while he has been a member, cannot 
be written without his name standing forth in conspicuous prominence, for he has 
been truly great upon every question that has been of sufficient importance to 
interest the public mind. It may be said of him, that he never shrank from public 
duty, but was always ready to defend his principles and opinions as became a man. 


He was an advocate for the last war, and was willing to show his faith by hia 
works, and to volunteer in the service of his country. He served in two cam- 
paigns was aid to Gen. Ramsey in the expedition commanded by Gen. Hopkins, 
and was aid to Governor Shelby, and served in that capacity with distinguished 
gallantry at the battle of the Thames. There are not a few of his countrymen 
who entertain the hope that the highest office in the gift of the American people 
will at no distant day be conferred upon him. Should it be so, the destinies of 
the republic will be confided to one whose head and heart qualify him for the 


CUMBERLAND county was formed in the year 1798, and called 
after Cumberland river, which runs through the county from one 
extremity to the other. It is situated in the southern part of the 
state, adjoining the state of Tennessee bounded on the north 
by Adair and Russell ; east by Clinton ; south by the Tennessee 
line, and west by Monroe county. The Cumberland river passea 
through the county from north-east to south-west, and the hills 
which bound it, with occasional exceptions, are quite lofty, afford- 
ing as beautiful scenery as any river in the west. The surface of 
the county and its staple products, are similar to those of the sur- 
rounding counties. 

The taxable property in Cumberland in 1846, was assessed at 
$998,886 ; number of acres of land in the county, 120,996; average 
value $3.58 ; number of white males in the county over twenty- 
one years of age, the same year, 949 ; number of children between 
five and sixteen years of age, 1,205. Population in 1840, 6,090. 

BURKSVILLE, the seat of justice of Cumberland, (so called in 
honor of one of the original proprietors,) is about one hundred and 
twenty miles from Frankfort, and situated on the north bank of 
the Cumberland river. Besides the usual public buildings, it con- 
tains a flourishing academy, six stores and groceries, two taverns, 
four lawyers, five physicians, twelve mechanics' shops, and a Re- 
formed church. Population 350. 

The American Oil well is situated three miles above Burksville, on the bank of 
the Cumberland river. About the year 1830, while some men were engaged in 
boring for salt-water, and after penetrating about one hundred and seventy-five 
feet through a solid rock, they struck a vein of oil, which suddenly spouted up to 
the height of fifty feet above the surface. The stream was so abundant and of 
such force, as to continue to throw up the oil to the same height for several days. 
The oil thus thrown out, ran into the Cumberland river, covering the surface of 
the water for several miles. It was readily supposed to be inflammable, and upon 
its being ignited, it presented the novel and magnificent spectacle of a "river on 
fire" the flames literally covering the whole surface for miles, reaching to the top 
of the tallest trees on the banks of the river, and continued burning until the sup- 
ply of oil was exhausted. The salt borers were greatly disappointed, and the 
well was neglected for several years, until it was discovered that the oil pos- 
sessed valuable medicinal qualities. It has since been bottled up in large quan- 
tities, and is extensively sold in nearly all the states of the Union. 

About fourteen miles from Burksville, on the Cumberland river, and not far 
from Creelsburg in Russell county, is situated what is termed the " Rock House," 


a lofty arch of solid rock, forty feet in height, fifty or sixty feet in breadth, about 
the same in length, and a tall cliff overhanging it. In high stages of the water, 
a portion of the river rushes through the aperture with great violence down a 
channel worn into the rock, and pours into the river again about a mile and a half 
below. In ordinary stages of the water, the arch, or as generally termed, the 
"Rock House," is perfectly dry. 

Not far from the oil well, at the junction of Big and Little Renick's creeks, there 
is a beautiful cataract or fall in the latter of about fifteen or twenty feet. At the 
point where these streams empty into the Cumberland, there was, in the first set- 
tlement of the county, a severe battle between the whites and Indians, in which 
the former were the victors. The rock-bound graves of the latter can yet be seen 
on the ground, a lasting monument of the valor they exhibited in defence of 
their wigwams, their fires and their hunting grounds. Other battles also took 
place in the county, but the particulars cannot be gathered. 


DAVEISS county was formed in 1815, and was so called after the 
gallant JOSEPH H. DAVEISS, who fell at the battle of Tippecanoe. 
It lies upon the Ohio and Green rivers : Bounded north by the 
Ohio river; east by Hancock and Ohio; south by Muhlenburg 
and Hopkins, and west by Henderson. The lands are generally 
level, fertile and well adapted to the production of corn and to- 
bacco, its principal exports. Hemp has been cultivated for a few 
years past as an experiment, and the crops produced compare 
well in quantity and quality with those in the best hemp region. 
Grasses also succeed well, and there is an increased attention to 
stock raising in the county. The lands are heavily timbered, con- 
sisting of sugar tree, locust, hackberry, walnut, dogwood, beech 
and poplar. 

The taxable property of Daveiss in 1846, was valued at 
$2,558,592; number of acres of land in the county, 306,651; 
average value of lands per acre, $4,20 ; number of white males 
over twenty-one years of age, 1,674; number of children be- 
tween five and sixteen years old, 1,928. Population in 1830, 
5,218 in 1840, 8,331 increase in ten years, 3,113. 

The towns of the county are Owenborough, Bon Harbor, 
Notts ville and Yelvington. OWENBOROUGH, the seat of justice, is 
situated on the Ohio river at the Yellow Banks, about one hun- 
dred and thirty miles from Frankfort. Contains a handsome 
court-house, Baptist, Cumberland Presbyterian and Catholic 
churches, an academy and common school, ten dry good stores, 
three groceries, four taverns, six lawyers and four physicians, 
with a population of about 1,000. A considerable trade is car- 
ried on by this town with the interior of the country, especially 
during a suspension of navigation on Green river ; and the to- 
bacco stemming business is extensively carried on here. Bon 
Harbor is a small village, three miles below Owenborough, on the 
Ohio river, where there is an eddy formed by a bar, which serves 
as an excellent harbor for steam boats and other craft. Thia 


place bids fair to become quite a manufacturing town. Nottsville 
is a small village, thirteen miles from Owenborough, on the Har- 
dinsburg road. Yelvington is a small village, eleven miles from 
Owenborough, on the Hawesville road. 

Daveiss county abounds in mineral resources, especially coal, 
which is found in vast quantities. The only mine which is in 
successful operation, is that known as the " Bon Harbor coal 
mine," lying about three miles below the county seat, and three- 
fourths of a mile from the Ohio river. There is a railroad from 
the mine to the river, at the terminus of which, the owners of 
the mine have erected one of the largest cotton and woollen manu- 
factories in the west. At this point there has been a town laid 
off, and several very handsome, houses built. The population, 
composed principally of operatives, already numbers two or 
three hundred. 

There are several medicinal springs in the county, which are 
frequented by those in the immediate vicinity. The tar and sul- 
phur springs in the neighborhood of the " Old Vernon settle- 
ments " on Green river, are deservedly the most popular. 

Colonel JOSEPH HAMILTON DAVEISS, (for whom this county was named,) was 
the son of Joseph and Jean Daveiss, and was born in Bedford county, Virginia, 
on the 4th of March, 1774. The parents of Mr. Daveiss, were both natives of 
Virginia ; but his father was of Irish, his mother of Scotch descent ; and the 
marked peculiarities of each of those races were strongly developed in the 
character of their son. The hardy self-reliance, the indomitable energy, and im- 
perturbable coolness, which have from earliest time distinguished the Scotch, were 
his ; while the warm heart, free and open hand, and ready springing tear of sen- 
sibility, told in language plainer than words, that the blood of Erin flowed fresh 
in his veins. When young Daveiss was five years old, his parents removed to 
Kentucky, then an almost unbroken wilderness, and settled in the then county of 
Lincoln, in the immediate vicinity of the present town of Danville. An incident 
which attended their journey to Kentucky, although trifling in itself, may be re- 
lated, as exhibiting in a very striking light the character of the mother, to whose 
forming influence was committed the subject of this notice. In crossing the 
Cumberland river, Mrs. Daveiss was thrown from her horse, and had her arm 
broken. The party only halted long enough to have the limb bound up, with 
what rude skill the men of the company possessed ; and pursued their route, she 
riding a spirited horse and carrying her child, and never ceasing her exertions to 
promote the comforts of her companions when they stopped for rest and refresh- 
ment. The parents of young Daveiss, in common with the very early settlers of 
Kentucky, had many difficulties to encounter in raising their youthful family, es- 
pecially in the want of schools to which children could be sent to obtain the ru- 
diments of an English education. It was several years after their settlement in 
Kentucky, before the subject of this sketch enjoyed even the advantages of a 
common country school. Previous to this time, however, his mother had bes- 
towed considerable attention in the education of her sons, by communicating 
such information as she herself possessed. At the age of eleven or twelve, he 
was sent to a grammar school taught by a Mr. Worley, where he continued for 
about two years, learned the Latin language, and made considerable progress in 
his English education. He subsequently attended a grammar school taught by a 
Dr. Brooks, at which he remained a year, making considerable advances in a 
knowledge of the Greek language. At school he evinced unusual capacity, being 
always at the head of his class. He was particularly remarkable for his talent 
for declamation and public speaking, and his parents felt a natural anxiety to 
give him as many advantages as their limited resources would permit. There 
being at that time no college in the country, he was placed under the charge of a 
Dr. Culbertson, where he completed his knowledge of the Greek tongue. At 


this time, the sudden death of a brother and sister occasioned his being recalled 
from school, and he returned home to assist his father in the labors of the farm. 
There is a tradition that young Daveiss was not particularly distinguished by his 
devotion to agricultural pursuits, frequently permitting the horses of his plough 
to graze at leisure, in a most unfarmerlike way, while he, stretched supinely on 
his back on some luxurious log, indulged in those delicious dreams and reveries 
so sweet to young and aspiring ambition. 

In the autumn of 1792, Major Adair, under government orders, raised some 
companies of mounted men, to guard the transportation of provisions to the forts 
north of the Ohio river, and Daveiss, then in his 18th year, volunteered in the 
service, which it was understood would be from three to six months duration. 
Nothing of particular interest occurred in the course of this service, except on 
one occasion, when Major Adair had encamped near fort St. Clair, Here he was 
surprised, early in the morning, by a large body of Indians, who, rushing into 
the camp just after the sentinels had been withdrawn from their posts, killed and 
wounded fourteen or fifteen of the men, and captured and carried away about two 
hundred head of horses. These were taken within the Indian lines and tied. 
After the whites had sought shelter in the neighborhood of the fort, young Da- 
veiss, discovering his own horse at some distance hitched to a tree, resolved to 
have him at all hazards. He accordingly ran and cut him loose, and led him 
back to his companions amid a shower of balls. This exploit nearly cost him his 
life ; a ball passing through his coat, waistcoat, and cutting off a small piece of 
his shirt. He, however, saved his horse, which was the only one retaken out of 
the two hundred. 

When his term of service expired, he returned home, and spent some time in 
reviewing his classical studies. He ultimately concluded to study law, and ac- 
cordingly entered the office of the celebrated George Nicholas, then the first law- 
yer in Kentucky. Daveiss entered a class of students consisting of Isham Talbott, 
Jesse Bledsoe, William Garrard, Felix Grundy, William Blackbourne, John 
Pope, William Stuart, and Thomas Dye Owings, all of whom were subsequently 
distinguished at the bar and in the public history of the country. Nicholas was 
very profoundly impressed with the striking indications of genius of a high order, 
manifested by Daveiss while under his roof; and so high an opinion did he form 
of the power of his character and the firmness of his principles, that at his death, 
which occurred but a few years after, he appointed him one of his executors. He 
was a most laborious and indefatigable student; he accustomed himself to take 
his repose upon a hard bed ; was fond of exercise in the open air, habituating 
himself to walking several hours in each day ; he was accustomed in the days 
when he was a student, to retire to the woods with his books, and pursue his 
studies in some remote secluded spot, secure from the annoyance and interruption 
of society. In connection with his legal studies, he read history and miscella- 
neous literature, so that when he came to the bar, his mind was richly stored 
with various and profound knowledge, imparting a fertility and affluence to his 
resources, from which his powerful and well trained intellect drew inexhaustible 
supplies. He commenced the practice of the law in June, 1795 ; in August he 
was qualified as an attorney in the court of appeals ; and in his first cause had 
for an antagonist his old preceptor, over whom he enjoyed the singular gratifica- 
tion of obtaining a signal triumph. 

At the session of 1795-6, the legislature passed a law establishing district 
courts. One of these courts was located at Danville, one at Lexington, and one 
at Bardstown. Daveiss settled at Danville, and soon commanded a splendid busi- 
ness, not only in that, but in all the courts in which he practiced. He continued 
to reside in Danville until the abolition of the district courts, and the substitution 
of circuit courts in their place. He then removed to Frankfort, to be enabled 
more conveniently to attend the court of appeals and the federal court, having 
been appointed United States' attorney for the State of Kentucky. In the year 
1801 or '2, he went to Washington city, being the first western lawyer who ever 
appeared in the supreme court of the United States. He here argued the cele- 
brated cause of Wilson vs. Mason. His speech is said to have excited the high- 
est admiration of the bench and bar, and placed him at once in the foremost rank 
of the profession. During this trip he visited the principal cities of the north 
and east, and formed an acquaintance with many of the most distinguished men 


of America, with several of whom he continued to correspond until the period of 
his death. In 1803, he was united in marriage to Anne Marshall, the sister of 
the chief justice of the United States. After he had resided in Frankfort a few 
years, he removed to Owensburg, Daveiss county, to be able to attend more closely 
to the interests of a large property he had acquired in that region. In 1809, he 
removed to Lexington, and resumed the practice of the law. During the short 
period of two years previous to his death, there was hardly a cause of importance 
litigated in the courts where he practiced, that he was not engaged on one side or 
the other. We should have noticed before, his prosecution of Aaron Burr for 

^treason, whilst acting as attorney for the United States. He had noticed the 
movements of this person for some time before he commenced a prosecution, and 
became satisfied from his observations that he had some unlawful design in view; 
f and, considering it to be his duty to arrest his movements, he caused him to be 

f apprehended and brought before the court; but, from a failure of evidence, the 
prosecution was ultimately abandoned. 

In the fall of 1811, Colonel Daveiss joined the army of General Harrison, in 
the campaign against the Indians on the Wabash. He received the command of 
major, the duties of which station he discharged promptly, and to the entire satis- 
faction of his superior officer. On the 7th of November, 1811, in the celebrated 
battle of Tippecanoe, he fell in a charge against the Indians, made at his own so- 
licitation. He survived from 5 o'clock in the morning until midnight, retaining 
to the last the full command of all his faculties. 

Colonel Daveiss was near six feet high, with an athletic and vigorous form, 
combining with his high intellectual endowments, a remarkably command- 
ing and impressive personal appearance. His bearing was grave and 
dignified. His manner bland and courteous to those he loved, but haughty and 
repulsive in the extreme to those he disliked. As an orator, he had few equals 
and no superiors. The late Judge Boyle, the Hon. John Pope, and the Hon. 
Samuel M'Kee, all competent judges, and associates of Daveiss at the bar, fre- 
quently declared that he was the most impressive speaker they ever heard. Asa 
colloquialist, he was unequalled, and the life of every circle in which he was 
thrown. His death occasioned a shock in the public mind throughout the State. 


EDMONSON county was formed in 1825, and named for Captain 
JOHN EDMONSON. It is situated in the south-west middle section 
of the State, and lies on both sides of Green river bounded on 
the north and north-west by Grayson, east by Hart and Barren, 
and south and south-west by Warren. The face of the county 
is generally undulating, and in some places quite hilly. There 
are several sulphur springs in the county, with ores of various 
kinds, and an inexhaustible supply of stone coal. The staple 
products are corn and oats. 

The taxable property of the county in 1846, was valued at 
$401,127 ; number of acres of land in the county, 124,038 ; average 
value of land per acre, $1,97; number of white males over twenty- 
one years old, 604 ; number of children between five and sixteen 
years of age, 955. Population in 1830, 2,642 in 1840, 2,914. 

BROWNSVILLE, the seat of justice and only town in Edmonson, is 
one hundred and thirty miles from Frankfort contains a Baptist 
and a Methodist church, an academy, two stores, two taverns, 
two lawyers, two doctors, (and three in the vicinity), and eight 


mechanics' shops. Population 150. Established in 1828, and 
named in honor of General Jacob Brown. 

There are three natural curiosities in this county : the " Dismal Rock," the 
" Indian Hill," and the " Mammoth Cave." Dismal Rock is a perpendicular 
rock on Dismal creek, one hundred and sixty-three feet high. The Indian Hill 
lies one mile from Brownsville is circular at its base, and one mile in circum- 
ference its altitude eighty-four feet, and, except on one side, which is easy of 
ascent on foot, perpendicular. The remains of a fortification are seen around the 
brow, and a number of mounds and burial places are scattered over the area. 
A spring of fine water issues from the rock near the surface. 

The MAMMOTH CAVE. In Edmonson county is situated, perhaps the greatest 
natural wonder of the world, the celebrated Mammoth Cave. In no other place has 
nature exhibited her varied powers on a more imposing scale of grandeur and mag- 
nificence. The materials of the following sketch of this cave, are derived, prin- 
cipally, from a small publication issued by Morton & Griswold, of Louisville, 
entitled " Rambles in the Mammoth Cave, during the year 1844, by a Visitor." 
This publication contains, we believe, the most complete and accurate description 
of this subterranean palace that has yet appeared, and gives the reader a very 
vivid conception of that amazing profusion of grand, solemn, picturesque and 
romantic scenery, which impresses every beholder with astonishment and awe, 
and attracts to this cave crowds of visitors from every quarter of the world. 

The cave is situated equi-distant from the cities of Louisville and Nashville, 
(about ninety miles from each,) and immediately on the nearest road between 
those two places. Green river is distant from the cave only half a mile, and since 
the improvements effected in the navigation of that stream, by the construction of 
locks and dams, steam boats can at all seasons ascend to Bowling-green, twenty 
miles below the cave, and during a great part of the year to the cave itself. For 
a distance of two miles from the cave, by the approach from the south-east, the 
country is level. It was, until recently, a prairie, on which however the oak, 
chestnut, and hickory are now growing ; and there being no underbrush, its 
smooth verdant openings present here and there, a close resemblance to the parks 
of the English nobility. Emerging from these beautiful woodlands, the visitor is 
presented with a view of the hotel and adjacent grounds. The hotel is a large 
edifice, two hundred feet long, by forty-five wide, with piazzas sixteen feet wide, 
extending the whole length of the building above and below. The accommo- 
dations at this hotel are kept up in superior style. 

The cave is about two hundred yards from the hotel, and is approached through 
a romantic and beautiful dell, shaded by a forest of trees and grape-vines. Pass- 
ing by the ruins of some old salt-petre furnaces, and large mounds of ashes, and 
turning abruptly to the right, the visitor is suddenly startled by a rush of cold air, 
and beholds before him the yawning mouth of the great cavern, dismal, dark and 
dreary. Descend some thirty feet, by rude steps of stone, and you are fairly un- 
der the arch of this " nether world." Before you, in looking towards the entrance, 
is seen a small stream of water, falling from the face of the rock, upon the ruins 
below, and disappearing in a deep pit; behind you, all is gloom and darkness. 
Proceeding onward about one hundred feet, the progress of the explorer is arrested 
by a door, set in a rough stone wall, which stretches across and completely blocks 
up the entrance to the cave. Passing through this door, you soon enter a narrow 
passage, faced on the left by a wall, built by the miners to confine the loose stones 
thrown up in the course of their labors, and descending gradually a short distance 
along this passage, you arrive at the great vestibule or ante-chamber of the cave. 
This is a hall of an oval shape, two hundred feet in length by one hundred and 
fifty wide, with a roof as flat and level as if finished by the trowel, and from 
fifty to sixty feet high. Two passages, each a hundred feet in width, open into 
it at its opposite extremities, but at right angles to each other; and as they run in 
a straight course for five or six hundred feet, with the same flat roof common to 
each, the appearance presented to the eye is that of a vast hall in the shape of the 
letter L, expanded at the angle, both branches being five hundred feet long by one 
hundred wide. The passage to the right hand is "Audubon Avenue." That in 
the front, the beginning of the grand gallery or the main cavern itself. The entire 
extent of this prodigious space is covered by a single rock, in which the eye can 


detect no break or interruption, save at its borders, which are surrounded by a 
broad sweeping 1 cornice, traced in horizontal panel work, exceedingly noble and 
regular. Not a single pier or pillar of any kind contributes to support it. It 
needs no support ; but is 

" By its own weight made steadfast and immoveable." 

At a very remote period, this chamber seems to have been used as a cemetery ; 
and there have been disinterred many skeletons of gigantic dimensions, belonging 
to a race of people long since vanished from the earth. Such is the vestibule of 
the Mammoth cave. The walls of this chamber are so dark that they reflect not 
one single ray of light from the dim torches. Around you is an impenetrable wall 
of darkness, which the eye vainly seeks to pierce, and a canopy of darkness, black 
and rayless, spreads above you. By the aid, however, of a fire or two which the 
guides kindle from the remains of some old wooden ruins, you begin to acquire a 
better conception of the scene around you. Far up, a hundred feet above your 
head, you catch a fitful glimpse of a dark gray ceiling, rolling dimly away like a 
cloud, and heavy buttresses, apparently bending under the superincumbent weight, 
project their enormous masses from the shadowy wall. The scene is vast, and 
solemn and awful. A profound silence, gloomy, still and breathless, reigns 
unbroken by even a sigh of air, or the echo of a drop of water falling from the 
roof. You can hear the throbbings of your heart, and the mind is oppressed with 
a sense of vastness, and solitude, and grandeur indescribable. 

Leaving this ante-chamber by an opening on the right, the visitor enters Au- 
dubon avenue, which is a chamber more than a mile long, fifty or sixty feet wide, 
and as many high. The roof or ceiling of this apartment, exhibits the appearance 
of floating clouds. Near the termination of this avenue, a natural well twenty- 
five feet deep, and containing the purest water, has been within the last few years 
discovered. It is surrounded by stalagmite columns, extending from the floor to 
the roof, upon the incrustation of which, when lights are suspended, the reflection 
from the water below and the various objects above and around, gives to the 
whole scene an appearance most romantic and picturesque. This spot, however, 
being difficult of access, is but seldom visited. The Little Bat room cave a 
branch of Audubon avenue, is on the left as you advance, and not more than three 
hundred yards from the great vestibule. It is a little over a quarter of a mile in 
length, and is chiefly remarkable for its pit of two hundred and eighty feet in 
depth ; and as being the resort, in winter, of immense numbers of bats. During 
this season of the year, tens of thousands of these are seen hanging from the 
walls, in apparently a torpid state, but no sooner does spring open than they 

From the Little Bat Room, and Audubon Avenue, the visitor returns into the 
vestibule, from whence, by another passage, at right angles to that just mentioned, 
he enters the grand gallery or main cavern. This is a vast tunnel, extending for 
many miles, averaging throughout fifty feet in width by as many in height. This 
noble subterranean avenue, the largest of which we have any knowledge, is re- 
plete with interest from its varied characteristics and majestic grandeur. Pro- 
ceeding down this main cave a quarter of a mile, the visitor comes to the Ken- 
tucky cliffs, so called from a fancied resemblance to the cliffs on the Kentucky 
river, and descending gradually about twenty feet, enters the Church. The ceil- 
ing here is sixty-three feet high, and the church itself, including the recess, is 
about one hundred feet in diameter. Eight or ten feet above the pulpit, and 
immediately behind it, is the organ loft, which is sufficiently capacious for an or- 
gan and choir of the largest size. This church is large enough to contain thou- 
sands, a solid projection of the wall seems to have been designed as a pulpit, and 
a few feet back is a place well calculated for an organ and choir. In this great 
temple of nature, religious service has been frequently performed, and it requires 
but a slight effort on the part of the speaker to make himself heard by the largest 

Leaving the church, the visitor is brought to the ruins of the old nitre works, 
leaching vats, pump frames, &c., &c., and looking from thence some thirty feet 
above, will see a large cave, connected with which is a narrow gallery, sweeping- 
across the main cave, and losing itself in a cave which is seen above, upon the 
right. This latter cave is the Gothic Avenue, which no doubt was at one time 


connected with the cave opposite, and on the same level, forming a complete 
bridge over the main cave, but has been broken down and separated by some 
great convulsion. The cave on the left, which is filled with sand, has been pen- 
etrated but a short distance. The Gothic Avenue, to which the visitor ascends 
from the main cave by a flight of stairs, is about forty feet wide, fifteen feet 
high, and two miles long. The ceiling in many places is as smooth and white 
as if formed by the trowel of the most skillful plasterer. In a recess on the left 
hand, elevated a few feet above the floor, two mummies, long since taken away, 
were to be seen in 1813. They were in good preservation one was a female, 
with her extensive wardrobe placed before her. Two of the miners found a mum- 
my in Audubon avenue in 1814 ; but having concealed it, it was not found until 
1840, when it was so much injured and broken to pieces by the weights which 
had been placed upon it, as to be of no value. There is no doubt that by proper 
efforts discoveries might be made which would throw light on the history of the 
early inhabitants of this continent. A highly scientific gentleman of New York, 
one of the early visitors to the cave, says in his published narrative : 

"On my first visit to the Mammoth Cave in 1813, I saw a relic of ancient times which 
requires a minute description. This description is from a memorandum made in the cave 
at the time. 

" In the digging of saltpetre earth in the short cave, a flat rock was met with by the work- 
men, a little below the surface of the earth, in the cave: this stone was raised, and was 
about four feet wide, and as many long ; beneath it was a square excavation about three feet 
deep, and as many in length and width. In this small nether subterranean chamber sat in 
solemn silence one of the human species, a female, with her wardrobe and ornaments 
placed at her side. The body was in a state of perfect preservation, and sitting erect. The 
arms were folded up, and the hands were laid across the bosom ; around the two wrists was 
wound a small cord, designed, probably, to keep them in the posture in which they were 
first placed ; around the body and next thereto were wrapped two deer skins. These skins 
appeared to have been dressed in some mode different from what is now practiced by any 
people of whom I have any knowledge. The hair of the skins was cut off very near 
the surface. The skins were ornamented with the imprints of vines and leaves, which were 
sketched with a substance perfectly white. Outside of these two skins was a large square 
sheet, which was either wove or knit. The fabric was the inner bark of a tree, which I 
judge from appearances to be that of the linn tree. In its texture and appearance, it re- 
sembled the south sea island cloth or matting ; this sheet enveloped the whole body or head. 
The hair on the head was cut off within an eighth of an inch of the skin, except near the 
neck, where it was an inch long. The color of the hair was a dark red ; the teeth were 
white and perfect. I discovered no blemish upon the body, except a wound between two 
ribs, near the back bone ; and one of the eyes had also been injured. The finger and toe 
nails were perfect and quite long. The features were regular. I measured the length of one 
of the bones of the arm with a string, from the elbow to the wrist joint, and they equalled 
my own in length, viz : ten and a half inches. From the examination of the whole 
frame I judged the figure to be that of a very tall female, say five feet ten inches in height. 
The body, at the time it was discovered, weighed but fourteen pounds, and was perfectly 
dry ; on exposure to the atmosphere, it gained in weight, by absorbing dampness, four 
pounds. Many persons have expressed surprise that a human body of great size should 
weigh so little, as many human skeletons, of nothing but bone, exceed this weight. 

" Recently some experiments have been made in Paris, which have demonstrated the fact 
of the human body being reduced to ten pounds, by being exposed to a heated atmosphere 
for a long period of time. The color of the skin was dark, not black ; the flesh was hard 
and dry upon the bones. At the side of the body lay a pair of moccasins, a knapsack, and 
an indispensable, or reticule. I will describe these in the order in which I have named them. 
The moccasins were made of wove or knit bark, like the wrapper I have described. Around 
the top was a border to add strength, and perhaps as an ornament. These were of middling 
size, denoting feet of a small size. The shape of the moccasins differs but little from the deer 
skin moccasins worn by the northern Indians. The knapsack was of wove or knit bark, 
with a deep strong border around the top, and was about the size of knapsacks used by 
soldiers. The workmanship of it was neat, and such as would do credit as a fabric, to a man- 
ufacturer of the present day. The reticule was also made of knit or wove bark. The shape 
was much like a horseman's valise, opening its whole length on the top. On the side of the 
opening, and a few inches from it, were two rows of loops, one row on each side. Two 
cords were fastened to one end of the reticule at the top, which passed through the loop on 
one side, and then on the other side, the whole length, by which it was laced up and secured. 
The edges of the top of the reticule were strengthened with deep fancy borders. The arti- 


cles contained in the knapsack and reticule were quite numerous, and were as follows ; one 
head cap, made of wove or knit bark, without any border, and of the shape of the plainest 
night cap ; seven head dresses, made of the quills of large birds, and put together somewhat 
in the way that feather fans are made, except that the pipes of the quills are not drawn to a 
point, but are spread out in straight lines with the top. This was done by perforating the 
pipe of the quill in two places, and running two cords through the holes, and then winding 
round the quills and the cord fine thread, to fasten each quill in the place designed for it. 
These cords extended some length beyond the quills on each side, so that on placing the 
feathers erect, the cords could be tied together at the back of the head. This would enable 
the wearer to present a beautiful display of feathers standing erect, and extending a distance 
above the head, and entirely surrounding it. These were most splendid head dresses, and 
would be a magnificent ornament to the head of a female at the present day. Several hun- 
dred strings of beads; these consisted of very hard, brown seed, smaller than hemp seed, in 
each of which a small hole had been made, and through the whole a small three corded 
thread, similar in appearance and texture to seine twine ; these were tied up in bunches, as a 
merchant ties up coral beads when he exposes them for sale. The red hoofs of fawns, on a 
string supposed to be worn around the neck as a necklace. These hoofs were about twenty 
in number, and may have been emblematic of innocence. The claw of an eagle, with a 
hole made in it through which a cord was passed, so that it could be worn pendant from the 
neck. The jaw of a bear, designed to be worn in the same manner as the eagle's claw, and 
supplied with a cord to suspend it around the neck. Two rattlesnake skins ; one of these 
had fourteen rattles; these skins were neatly folded up. Some vegetable colors done up in 
leaves. A small bunch of deer sinews, resembling cat-gut in appearance. Several bunches of 
thread and twine, two and three threaded, some of which were nearly white. Seven needles, 
some of which were of horn and some of bone; they were smooth, and appeared to have 
been much used. These needles had each a knob or whorl on the top, and at the other end 
were brought to a point like a large sail needle. They had no eyelets to receive a thread. 
The top of one of these needles was handsomely scolloped. A hand piece made of deer-skin, 
with a hole through it for the thumb, and designed probably to protect the hand in the use 
of the needle, the same as thimbles are now used. Two whistles, about eight inches long, 
made of cane, with a joint about one third the length ; over the joint is an opening extend- 
ing to each side of the tube of the whistle ; these openings were about three quarters of an 
inch long, and an inch wide, and had each a flat reed placed in the opening. These whistles 
were tied together with a cord wound round them. 

" I have been thus minute in describing this mute witness from the days of other times, and 
the articles which were deposited within her earthen house. Of the race of people to whom she 
belonged when living we know nothing ; and as to conjecture, the reader who gathers from 
these pages this account, can judge of the matter as well as those who saw the remnant of 
mortality in the subterranean chambers in which she was entombed. The cause of the pres- 
ervation of her body, dress, and ornaments, is no mystery. The dry atmosphere of the cave, 
with the nitrate of lime, with which the earth that covers the bottom of these 1 nether palaces 
is so highly impregnated, preserves animal flesh, and it will neither putrify nor decompose 
when confined to its unchanging action. Heat and moisture are both absent from the cave, 
and it is these two agents acting together which produce both animal and vegetable decom- 
position and putrefaction. 

" In the ornaments, &c., of this mute witness of ages gone, we have a record of olden- 
time, from which, in the absence of a written record, we may draw some conclusions. In 
the various articles which constituted her ornaments, there were no metallic substances. 
In the make of her dress, there is no evidence of the use of any other machinery than 
the bone and horn needles. The beads are of a substance, of the use of which for such 
purposes we have no account among people of whom we have any written record. She 
had no warlike arms. By what process the hair on her head was cut short, or by what 
process the deer skins were shorn, we have no means of conjecture. These articles afford us 
the same means of judging of the nation to which she belonged, and of their advances in 
the arts, that future generations will have in the exhumation of a tenant of one of our 
modern tombs, with the funeral shroud &c. in a state of like preservation ; with this differ- 
ence, that with the present inhabitants of this section of the globe, but few articles of orna- 
ment are deposited with the body. The features of this ancient member of the human 
family much resembled those of a tall, handsome, American woman. The forehead was 
high, and the head well formed." 

In this chamber (the Gothic Avenue), there are to be seen a number of stalag- 
mite pillars reaching from the floor to the ceiling, once white and translucent, but 
now black and begrimed with smoke. In this chamber, too, there are a num- 
ber of stalactites, one of which, called the Bell, on being struck, gave forth a 
sound like the deep bell of a cathedral ; but was broken several years ago by a 


visitor, and now tolls no longer. In this chamber, also, are Louisa's Bower and 
Vulcan's Furnace. In the latter, there is a heap not unlike cinders in appearance, 
and some dark colored water. Here, too, are the Register Rooms, where on a 
ceiling as smooth and white as if finished by art, thousands of names have been 
traced by the smoke of a candle. In this neighborhood the visitor reaches the 
Stalagmite Hall or Gothic Chapel, an elliptical chamber, eighty feet long by fifty 
feet wide. Stalagmite columns, of enormous size, nearly block up the two ends ; 
and two rows of pillars of smaller dimensions, reaching from the floor to the ceiling, 
and equi-distant from the wall on either side, extend the entire length of the hall. 
This apartment is one of surprising grandeur and magnificence, and when brilli- 
antly lighted up by the lamps, presents a scene inspiring the beholder with feel- 
ings of solemnity and awe. The Devil's Arm Chair is a large stalagmite column, 
in the centre of which is formed a capacious and comfortable seat. Near the foot 
of the Chair is a small basin of sulphur water. In this Avenue are situated 
Napoleon's Breast Work, the Elephant's Head, and the Lover's Leap. The latter 
is a large pointed rock, projecting over a dark and gloomy hollow, thirty feet 
deep. Descending into the hollow, immediately below the Lover's Leap, the 
visitor enters, to the left, a passage or chasm in the rock, three feet wide and fifty 
feet high, which leads to the lower branch of the Gothic Avenue. At the en- 
trance of this lower branch, is a large flat rock called Gatewood's Dining Table, 
to the right of which is a cave, in which is situated the Cooling Tub, a beauti- 
ful basin of six feet wide and three deep into which a small stream of the pur- 
est water pours from the ceiling and afterwards flows into the Flint Pit. Cir- 
cling round Gatewood's Dining Table, which almost blocks up the way, the 
visitor passes Napoleon's Dome, the Cinder Banks, the Crystal Pool, the Salts 
Cave, etc., and descending a few feet, and leaving the direct course of the cave, 
enters on the right Annett's Dome, a place of great seclusion and grandeur. 
Through a crevice in the wall of this Dome is a beautiful waterfall issuing in a 
stream of a foot in diameter from a high cave in the side of the dome, and pass- 
ing off by a small channel into the Cistern, a large pit directly in the pathway 
of the cave, which is usually full of water. Near the end of this lower branch 
of the Gothic Avenue, there is a crevice in the ceiling over the last spring, 
through which the sound of water may be heard falling in a cave or open space 

Returning from the Gothic Avenue, again into the main cave, which continues 
to increase in interest as he advances, the visitor is met at every step by some- 
thing to elicit his admiration and wonder. At a small distance from the stairs 
which descend from the Gothic Avenue into the main cave, is situated the Ball 
Room, so called from its singular adaptation to such assemblages. Here is an 
orchestra fifteen feet high, large enough to accommodate a hundred musicians, 
with a gallery extending back to the level of the high embankment near the 
Gothic Avenue ; and the cave is here wide, straight, and perfectly level for several 
hundred feet. By the addition of a plank floor, seats and lamps, a ball room 
might be furnished, more grand and magnificent than any other on earth. Next 
in order is Willie's Spring, a beautiful fluted niche in the left hand wall, caused 
by the continual attrition of water trickling down into the basin below. Pro- 
ceeding onwards the visitor passes the Well Cave, Rocky Gave, etc. etc., and ar- 
rives at the Giant's Coffin, a huge rock on the right, thus named from its singu- 
lar resemblance to a coffin. At this point commence those incrustations which, 
assuming every imaginable shape on the ceiling, afford full scope to the fancy, 
to picture what it will, whether of " birds, or beasts or creeping things." About a 
hundred yards beyond the Coffin, the cave makes a majestic curve, and sweeping 
round the Great Bend, resumes its general course. Here, by means of a Bengal 
light, this vast amphitheatre may be illuminated and a scene of enchantment ex- 
posed to the view. No language can describe the splendor and sublimity of the 
scene. Opposite to this point is the entrance to the Sick Room Cave, so called 
from the sudden sickness of a visitor, brought on by smoking cigars in one of its 
remote nooks. Immediately beyond this there is situated a row of cabins for 
consumptive patients. These are well furnished, and would, with good and com- 
fortable accommodations, pure air and uniform temperature, cure the pulmonary 
consumption. The atmosphere of the cave is always temperate and pure. 

Next in the order of succession, is the Star Chamber. This is a very remark- 


able avenue, and presents the most perfect optical illusion; in looking up to the 
ceiling, which is very high, the spectator seems to see the very firmament itself, 
studded with stars, and afar off, a comet, with its long, bright tail. Not far 
from this Star Chamber, may be seen in a cavity in the wall on the right, and 
about twenty feet above the floor, an oak pole, about ten feet long and six inches 
in diameter, with two round sticks of half the thickness, and three feet long, tied 
on to it transversely, at about four feet apart. One end of this pole rests on the 
bottom of the cavity, and the other reaching across and forced firmly into a cre- 
vice about three feet above. It has been supposed that on this pole was once 
placed a dead body, similar contrivances being used by some Indian tribes, on 
which to place their dead. This pole was first discovered in 1841. Ages have 
rolled away since it was placed here, and yet it is perfectly sound. In this neigh- 
borhood there are Side Cuts, as they are called ; caves opening on the sides of 
the avenues, and after proceeding some distance, entering them again. Some of 
these side cuts exceed half a mile in length, but they are generally short. 

The visitor next enters the Salts room, the walls and ceiling of which are cov- 
ered with salts hanging in crystals. In this room are the Indian houses under 
the rocks, small spaces or rooms completely covered some of which contain 
ashes and cane partly burnt. The Cross rooms is a grand section of this avenue ; 
the ceiling presenting an unbroken span of one hundred and seventy feet, with- 
out a column to support it. In this neighborhood are the Black Chambers, in 
which are to be seen many curious and remarkable objects. The Humble Chute 
is the entrance to the Solitary chambers, in going into which you must crawl on 
your hands and knees some fifteen or twenty feet under a low arch. In the Sol- 
itary cave is situated the Fairy Grotto; here an immense number of stalactites 
are seen at irregular distances, extending from the roof to the floor, of various 
sizes and of the most fantastic shapes some straight, some crooked, some large 
and hollow, forming irregularly fluted columns ; and some solid near the ceiling, 
and divided lower down, into a great number of small branches like the roots of 
trees, exhibiting the appearance of a coral grove. Lighted up by lamps, this 
grove of stalactites exhibits a scene of extraordinary beauty. Returning from 
the Fairy Grotto, you re-enter the main cave at the Cataract, and come next to 
the chief city or Temple, which is thus described by Lee in his notes on the Mam- 
moth Cave : 

"The Temple is an immense vault, covering an area of two acres, and covered by a single 
dome of solid rock, one hundred and twenty feet high. It excels in size the cave of Staffa ; 
and rivals the celebrated vault in the Grotto of Antiparos, which is said to be the largest in 
the world. In passing through from one end to the other, the dome appears to follow like 
the sky in passing from place to place on the earth. In the middle of the dome there is a 
large mound of rocks rising on one side nearly to the top, very steep, and forming what is 
called the mountain. When first I ascended this mound from the cave below, I was struck 
with a feeling of awe, more deep and intense than any thing I had ever before experienced. 
I could only observe the narrow circle which was illuminated immediately around me, above 
and beyond was apparently an unlimited space, in which the ear could catch not the slightest 
sound, nor the eye find an object to rest upon. It was filled with silence and darkness ; and 
yet I knew that I was beneath the earth, and that this space, however large it might be, was 
actually bounded by solid walls. My curiosity was rather excited than gratified. In order 
that I might see the whole in one connected view, I built fires in many places with the 
pieces of cane which I found scattered among the rocks. Then taking my stand on the 
mountain, a scene was presented of surprising magnificence. On the opposite side, the strata 
of gray limestone breaking up by steps from the bottom, could scarcely be discerned in the 
distance by the glimmering. Above was the lofty dome, closed at the top by a smooth oval 
slab beautifully defined in the outline, from which the walls sloped away on the right and 
left, into thick darkness. Every one has heard of the dome of the mosque of St. Sophia, of 
St. Peter's and St. Paul's ; they are never spoken of but in terms of admiration, as the chief 
works of architecture, and among the noblest and most stupendous examples of what man 
can do when aided by science ; and yet, when compared with the dome of this temple, they 
sink into comparative insignificance. Such is the surpassing grandeur of nature's works." 

A narrow passage behind the Giant's coffin leads to a circular room one hundred feet in 
diameter, with a low roof called the Wooden Bowl, in allusion to its figure, or as some say, 
from a wooden bowl having been found here by some old miner. This Bowl is the vestibule 
of the Deserted Chambers. On the right are the Steeps of Time, down which descending 
about twenty feet, and almost perpendicularly for the first ten, the visitor enters the Deserted 


Chambers, which present features extremely wild and terrific. For two hundred yards the 
ceiling is rough and broken, but further on it is white, smooth and waving, as if worn by 
water. At Richardson's Spring the imprint of moccasins and of children's feet of some by- 
gone age, are to be seen. There are more pits in the Deserted Chambers than in any other 
pax t of the cave ; among the most remarkable of these, are the Covered Pit, the Side-saddle 
Pit and the Bottomless Pit. One of the chief glories of the cave is Gorin's Dome. This 
dome is of solid rock, with sides apparently fluted and polished, and two hundred feet high. 
The range of the Deserted Chambers is terminated by the Bottomless Pit. This pit is some- 
what in the shape of a horse-shoe, having a tongue of land twenty-seven feet long, running 
out into the middle of it. Beyond the Bottomless Pit is the Winding Way, and Persico 

Persico Avenue averages about fifty feet in width, with a height of about thirty feet; and 
is said to be two miles long. It unites in an eminent degree the beautiful and the sublime, 
and is highly interesting throughout its entire extent. For a quarter of a mile from the 
entrance the roof is beautifully arched, about twelve feet high and sixty wide. The walk- 
ing here is excellent, a dozen persons might run abreast for a quarter of a mile to Bunyan's 
Way, a branch of the avenue leading to the river. At this point the avenue changes its 
features of beauty and regularity for those of wild grandeur and sublimity, which it preserves 
to the end. The roof becomes lofty and imposingly magnificent, its long pointed or lancet 
arches, reminding the spectator of the rich and gorgeous ceilings of the old Gothic cathe- 
drals. Not far from this point the visitor descending gradually a few feet, enters a tunnel of 
fifteen wide, the ceiling twelve or fourteen feet high, perfectly arched and beautifully covered 
with white incrustations, and soon reaches the Great Crossings. The name is not unapt, 
because two great caves cross here. Not far from here is the Pine-apple Bush, a large 
column composed of a white soft crumbling material, with bifurcations extending from the 
ceiling. The Winding Way is one hundred and five feet long, eighteen inches wide, and 
from three to seven feet deep, widening out above sufficiently to admit the free use of one's 
arms. It is throughout tortuous, forming a perfect zig-zag. 

Relief Hall, at the termination of the Winding Way, is very wide and lofty, but not 
long; it terminates at River Hall, a distance of one hundred yards from its entrance. Here 
two routes present themselves. The one to the left conducts to the Dead Sea and the Rivers, 
and that to the right to the Bacon Chamber, the Bandit's Hall, the Mammoth Dome, &c., 
&c., &c. The Bacon Chamber is a pretty fair representation of a low ceiling, thickly hung 
with canvassed hams and shoulders. The Bandit's Hall is a vast and lofty chamber, the 
floor covered with a mountainous heap of rocks, rising amphitheatrically almost to the ceil- 
ing. From the Bandit's Hall diverge two caves, one of which, the left, leads you to a mul- 
titude of domes ; and the right to one which, par excellence, is called the Mammoth Dome. 
This dome is near four hundred feet high, and is justly considered one of the most sublime 
and wonderful spectacles of this most wonderful of caverns. From the summit of this 
dome there is a waterfall. Foreigners have been known to declare, on witnessing an illu- 
mination of the great dome and hall, that it alone would compensate for a voyage across the 

The River Hall is a chamber situated at the termination of Relief Hall, which has been 
already mentioned, and through which the visitor must pass in approaching the greatest won* 
dersof the cave, the Dead Sea and the Rivers. We despair of giving any adequate descrip- 
tion of this subterranean lake and rivers. " The River Hall descends like the slope of a 
mountain ; the ceiling stretches away away before you, vast and grand as the firmament 
at midnight." Proceeding a short distance, there is on the left " a steep precipice, over 
which you can look down, by the aid of blazing missiles, upon a broad black sheet of water, 
eighty feet below, called the Dead Sea. This is an awfully impressive place, the sights and 
sounds of which do not easily pass from memory. He who has seen it, will have it vividly 
brought before him by Alfieri's description of Filipno. ' Only a transient word or act gives 
us a short and dubious glimmer that reveals to us the abysses of his being daring, lurid, and 
terrific as the throat of the infernal pool.' Descending from the eminence by a ladder of 
about twenty feet, we find ourselves among piles of gigantic rocks, and one of the most pic- 
turesque sights in the world is to see a file of men and women passing along those wild and 
scraggy paths, moving slowly slowly that their lamps may have time to illuminate their 
sky-like ceiling and gigantic walls, disappearing behind high cliffs sinking into ravines 
their lights shining upwards through fissures in the rocks then suddenly emerging from 
some abrupt angle, standing in the bright gleam of their lights, relieved by the towering 
black masses around them. As you pass along, you hear the roar of invisible water falls ; 
and at the foot of the slope the river Styx lies before you, deep and black, overarched with 
rocks. Across (or rather down) these unearthly waters, the guide can convey but four pas- 
sengers at once. The lamps are fastened to the prow, the images of which are reflected in 
the dismal pool. If you are impatient of delay, or eager for new adventure, you can leave 
your companions lingering about the shore and cross the Styx by a dangerous bridge of 


precipices over head. In order to do this you must ascend a steep cliff, and enter a cave 
above, three hundred yards long, from an egress of which you find yourself on the bank of 
the river, eighty feet above its surface, commanding a view of those in the boat, and those 
waiting on the shore. Seen from this height, the lamps in the canoe glare like fiery eye- 
balls ; and the passengers sitting there so hushed and motionless look like shadows. The 
scene is so strangely funereal and spectral, that it seems as if the Greeks must have witnessed 
it, before they imagined Charon conveying ghosts to the dim regions of Pluto. If you turn 
your eye from the parties of men and women whom you left waiting on the shore, you will 
see them by the gleam of their lamps, scattered in picturesque groups, looming out in bold 
relief from the dense darkness around them." 

Having passed the Styx, the explorer reaches the banks of the river Lethe. 
Descending this about a quarter of a mile, he lands, and enters a level and lofty 
hall called the Great Walk, which stretches to the banks of the Echo, a distance 
of three or four hundred yards. The Echo is wide and deep enough, at all times, 
to float a steamer of the largest class. At the point of embarkation the arch is 
very low ; but in two boats' lengths, -the vault of the cave becomes lofty and 
wide. The novelty, the grandeur, the magnificence of the surrounding scenery 
here, elicits unbounded admiration and wonder. The Echo is three quarters of a 
mile long. It is in these rivers that the extraordinary white eyeless fish are 
caught There is not the slightest indication of an organ similar to an eye to be 

Beyond the Echo there is a walk of four miles to Cleveland's Avenue, in reach- 
ing which the visitor passes through El Ghor, Silliman's Avenue, and Welling- 
ton's Gallery, to the foot of the ladder which leads up to Mary's Vineyard, the 
commencement of Cleveland's Avenue. Proceeding about a hundred feet from 
this spot, you reach the base of the hill on which stands the Holy Sepulchre. 
Cleveland's avenue is about three miles long, seventy feet wide, and twelve or 
fifteen feet high more rich and gorgeous than any ever revealed to man, abound- 
ing in formations which are no where else to be seen, and which the most stupid 
cannot behold without feelings of admiration. But a detailed description of these 
wonders would not consist with the plan of this work. In this Avenue are situ- 
ated Cleveland's Cabinet, the Rocky Mountains, Croghan's Hall, Serena's Arbor, 
&c. &c. There is in this vast cave another avenue, more than three miles long, 
lofty and wide, and at its termination there is a hall which the guide thinks 
larger than any other in the cave. It is as yet without a name. 

Captain JOHN EDMONSON, from whom this county derived its name, was a na- 
tive of Washington county, Virginia. He settled in Fayette county, Kentucky, 
in the year 1790. He raised a company of volunteer riflemen, and joined Col. 
John Allen's regiment in the year 1612, and fell in the disastrous battle of the 
river Raisin, the 22d of January, 1813. 


ESTILL county was formed in 1808, and named in honor of Cap- 
tain James Estill. It is situated in the eastern middle part of 
the State, and lies on both sides of the Kentucky river. Bounded 
on the north by Montgomery, east by Breathitt, south by Clay, 
and west by Madison. The face of the country is generally bro- 
ken and mountainous the settlements being mostly confined 
to the valleys on the water courses. The growth of the bottom 
land is oak, walnut, hickory, cherry, and sugar tree ; that of the 
upland, oak and poplar, and along the river banks, some pine 
and cedar. Iron ore and coal are found in great abundance in 
the mountains. 


The taxable property of the county in 1846 was valued at $633,- 
834; number of acres of land in the county, 189,765; average 
value of lands per acre, $2.15; number of white males over 
twenty-one years old, 903 ; number of children between five and 
sixteen years of age, 1,361. Population in 1830, 4,618 in 1840, 

The Red River Iron Works is located in this county. It is an 
extensive establishment, wielding a heavy capital, and employing 
a large number of hands. A large quantity of bar iron and nails 
are manufactured at the works. The proprietors and all the op- 
eratives in this establishment are temperance men, ardent spirits 
having been altogether banished from its precincts. The Estill 
steam furnace is situated ten miles east, and Miller's creek salt 
works eight miles above Irvine. Three or four miles from the 
county seat, hydraulic lime has been found in great quantities. 

IRVINE, the seat of justice, is seventy miles south-east of Frank- 
fort. It is located on a beautiful site on the northern bank of the 
Kentucky river contains a brick court-house and jail, and sem- 
inary ; (the court-house and seminary being used for religious 
worship,) four lawyers, four physicians, four stores and seven 
mechanics' shops. Population two hundred. Established in 1812, 
and named in honor of Colonel William Irvine, who is noticed 
under the head of Madison county. 

Capt. JAMES ESTILL, in honor of whom this county received its name, was a 
native of Augusta county, Virginia. He removed to Kentucky at an early period, 
and settled on Muddy creek, in the present county of Madison, where he built a 
station which received the name of Estill's station. In 1781 in a skirmish with 
the Indians, he received a rifle-shot in one of his arms, by which it was broken. 
In March, 1782, with a small body of men, believed to be about twenty-five, he 
pursued a similar number of Wyandotts across the Kentucky river, and into Mont- 
gomery county, where he fought one of the severest and most bloody battles on 
record, when the number of men on both sides is taken into the account.* Cap- 
tain Estill and his gallant Lieutenant, South, were both killed in the retreat which 
succeeded. Thus fell (says Mr. Morehead in his Boonsborough address), in the 
ripeness of his manhood, Captain James Estill, one of Kentucky's bravest and 
most beloved defenders. It may be said of him with truth, that if he did not 
achieve the victory, he did more he deserved it. Disappointed of success van- 
quished slain, in a desperate conflict with an enemy of superior strength and 
equal valor, he has nevertheless left behind him a name of which his descendants 
may well be proud a name which will live in the annals of Kentucky, so long 
as there shall be found men to appreciate the patriotism and self-devotion of a 
martyr to the cause of humanity and civilization. 

The Rev. JOSEPH PROCTOR, of this county, was one of the intrepid band of Cap- 
tain Estill, in the bloody battle noticed under the Montgomery head. His cool- 
ness and bravery throughout the battle, were unsurpassed. A savage warrior 
having buried his knife in Captain Estill's breast, Proctor instantly sent a ball 
from his rifle through the Wyandott's heart. His conduct after the battle, elicited 
the warmest approbation. He brought off the field of battle his wounded friend, 
the late Colonel William Irvine, of Madison, who is noticed under the head of 
that county. 

In an engagement with the Indians at Pickaway towns, on the Great Miami, 
Proctor killed an Indian chief. He was a brave soldier, a stranger to fear, and 
an ardent friend to the institutions of his country. He made three campaigns into 
Ohio, with the view of suppressing Indian hostilities ; and fought side by side 

*See a full account of this battle under the head of Montgomery county. 


with Boone, Galloway and Logan. He joined the Methodist Episcopal church 
in a fort in Madison county, under the preaching of the Rev. James Hawkes ; 
and was ordained in 1809, by Bishop Asbury. He was an exemplary member of 
the church for sixty-five years, and a local preacher upwards of half a century. 
He died at his residence on the 2d of December, 1844, and was buried with mil- 
itary honors. 


FAYETTE county was formed in 1780 by the State of Virginia, 
and is one of the three original counties that at one time com- 
prised the whole district of Kentucky and included all that ter- 
ritory beginning at the mouth of the Kentucky river, and extend- 
ing up its middle fork to the head, and embracing the northern 
and eastern portion of the present State. It received its name as 
a testimonial of gratitude to GEN. GILBERT MORTIER DE LA FAYETTE 
the gallant and generous Frenchman who volunteered as the 
CHAMPION of LIBERTY on this side of the Atlantic, and proved to the 
world, that although a nobleman by descent, he was a republican 
in principle, and was more ennobled by nature than by all the 
titles of hereditary rank. 

Fayette county is situated in the middle portion of the State, 
and lies on the waters of the Kentucky and Elkhorn. It is boun- 
ded on the north by Scott, east by Bourbon and Clark, south by 
Madison and Jessamine, and west by Woodford ; being twenty- 
five miles from north to south, mean breadth eleven miles, and 
containing 275 square miles. It is fair table land all the streams 
rise and flow from the centre of the county, and empty into their 
common receptacle, the Kentucky river. The centre of the gar- 
den of Kentucky, the surface of this county is very gently undu- 
lating, and the soil is probably as rich and productive as any upon 
which the sun ever shone. It is properly a stock raising county 
horses, mules, cattle, and hogs, in large numbers, being annu- 
ally exported ; but corn and hemp are produced in great abun- 
dance the latter being generally manufactured in the county. 

The taxable property of the county in 1846, was valued at 
$16,007,020 (second in amount only to Jefferson, including the 
city of Louisville); number of acres of land in the county, 193,- 
061 ; average value of land per acre, $33.95 ; number of white 
males over twenty-one years of age, 2,883 ; children between five 
and sixteen years old, 2,233. Population in 1830, 25,174; in 
1840, 22,194. 

LEXINGTON, the county seat of Fayette, is a remarkably neat and 
beautiful city, situated on the Town fork of Elkhorn river, 25 miles 
south-east from Frankfort, 64 miles south-weet from Maysville, 
77 miles south-east from Louisville, 85 miles from Cincinnati, and 
517 from Washington city. Latitude 38 02' north ; longitude 
84 26' west. It was founded in the year 1776. About the first 
of April, 1779, a block house was built on the site now occupied 
by Mr. Leavy's store, and the settlement commenced under the 



influence of Col. Robert Patterson, joined by Messrs. McConnels, 
Lindseys, and James Masterson. Major John Morrison removed 
his family soon after from Harrodsburg, and the lady of that gen- 
tleman was the first white female that graced the infant settlement. 
Being settled during the revolution,* it received its name in com- 
memoration of the battle of Lexington, where the first blood was 
shed in the great cause of human liberty. Lexington was incor- 
porated by Virginia in 1782, and was for several years the seat 
of government of the State. The first improvements consisted 
of three rows of cabins, the two outer serving as a part of the 
walls of the fortification, which extended from the corner now 
known as Leavy's corner, to James Masterson's house on Main 
street. The block house commanded the public spring, and a 
common field included the site of the present court house. 

The streets of Lexington are laid out at right angles, and are 
well paved. Main street is one mile and a quarter long. Few 
towns are more delightfully situated. Its vicinity has a softness 
and beauty about it, and the city itself presents an appearance 
of neatness, that rarely fails to strike a stranger's eye with ad- 
miration. Many of the private residences, and several of the 
public edifices, are fine specimens of architectural taste ; while 
the surrounding country, rich and highly cultivated, is dotted over 
with elegant mansions. (See note on p. 265.) 



The public buildings are a court house; a masonic hall erected by the grand 
lodge of Kentucky; Morrison College, and Medical Hall, both imposing and 
costly edifices belonging to Transylvania University; eleven churches, embracing 
one Episcopal, two Presbyterian, one Methodist, one Catholic, one Reformed or 
Christian, one Baptist, one Independent Methodist, one Seceder, and two African; 
a city free school, established in 1834, and amply endowed, containing from three 
to five hundred scholars ; the city hospital and work house is a plain brick build- 
ing, erected in 1836 ; the Lunatic Asylum, first erected by the city, but afterwards 
taken under the care of the State, and greatly enlarged, containing upwards of 
two hundred rooms, and capable of accommodating from three to four hundred 
patients ; the Northern Bank of Kentucky, a beautiful and finely finished edifice ; 
and the Orphan Asylum, erected in the year 1833, for the benefit of the destitute 
orphans who were deprived of their parents by cholera, which raged so fearfully 
in that year. 

There are two newspapers published in the city, which are ably edited and 
widely circulated, viz: The " Kentucky Gazette," established in 1787, by the 
brothers, John and Fielding Bradford, the first number having been issued on the 
18th of August, with the title of "Kentucke Gazette.f This is the oldest news- 
paper west of the Alleghany mountains, with the exception of the Pittsburgh Ga- 
zette. The " Lexington Observer and Reporter," originally called the " Lexington 
Reporter," was established by William W. Worsley, nearly forty years since, 
and is now published semi-weekly and weekly. 

There are in Lexington between thirty-five and forty of each of the two pro- 
fessions law and medicine, sixty or seventy stores *and groceries many of 
them wholesale, four book stores, six drug stores, ten taverns, and about seventy 
mechanical and manufacturing establishments, embracing blacksmiths, saddle 
and harness makers, painters, tailors, carriage makers, silver smiths, gun smiths, 
platers, copper and tin manufacturers, boot and shoe makers, iron and brass foun- 
ders, carpenters, cabinet makers, hatters, and morocco, looking glass and brush 
manufacturers. Capital invested in dry goods, $1,500,000 groceries, $700,000 
manufactures and banks, $12,000,000. Taxable property in the city, $3,039,- 
608, in 1845. Annual importations same year, $897,445 ; stock in trade, $470,- 
568. The manufacture of hemp is carried on very extensively in Lexington and 
the county of Fayette. In the city there are fifteen hemp establishments, work- 
ing six hundred hands, running ninety looms, and making annually 2,500,000 
yards of bagging, and 2,000,000 pounds of rope. In the suburbs of the city there 
are four factories, manufacturing 680.,000 yards of bagging and 400,000 pounds of 
rope. In the remainder of the county there are fourteen factories, working three 
hundred hands, running fifty looms, and turning out 1,250,000 yards bagging 
and 1,000,000 pounds of rope. Thus, in the city and county, there are thirty-three 
bagging and rope establishments, working one thousand and fifty hands, running 
one hundred and sixty-five looms, and making 4,430,000 yards of bagging and 
3,400,000 pounds of rope. Population of Lexington in 1845 whites, 4,999 ; 
blacks, 3,179; total, 8,178. The population in 1847 is supposed to be about 

TRANSYLVANIA UNIVERSITY was established by the legislature of Kentucky in 
1798, by the amalgamation of the two institutions known by the name of the 
Transylvania Seminary and Kentucky Academy. Until within a few years, it 
was properly a State institution. In the year 1842 it passed under the supervi- 
sion of the Kentucky conference of the Methodist Episcopal church, and is now, 
like all the other colleges of the State, a denominational institution. It has 
passed through many vicissitudes, but is at present in a flourishing condition, 
and bids fair, under the patronage of the Methodist Episcopal church south, to 
rival its palmiest days. 

Morrison College (the literary department of Transylvania University) has 
six professors and teachers, with about three hundred students, including the pre- 

*In the year 1775, intelligence was received by a party of hunters, who were accidentally en- 
camped on one of the branches of Elkhorn, that the first battle of the revolution had been fought in 
the vicinity of Boston, between the British and provincial forces, and in commemoration of tho 
event, they called the spot of their encampment Lexington. No settlement was then made. The spot 
is now covered by one of the most beautiful cities on the continent. Governor MoreheadPs Address. 

t The first and about half of the second volume of the Gazette was printed with the name of th 
" Kentucke Gazette." Afterwards the y was substituted for the e in Kentucky, 




paratory department. The Rev. Henry B. Bascom, D. D., is president. The 
alumni numbers about 650. The number of volumes in the library 4,500. 

The Medical School is under the supervision of eight trustees, and was founded 
in 1818. It has eight professors, and an average, for several years, of about one 
hundred and seventy-five students. The number of graduates, up to January, 
1847, exceeded fifteen hundred. Connected with the institution is a fine museum, 
a very valuable library, and an extensive chemical apparatus for experimenting. 
The professors are able and generally distinguished men, and the institution, 
until recently, has had no rival in the west. 

The Law School, like the Medical college, is connected with the Transylvania 
University. This department has three professors, (Judges Robertson, Woolley 
and Marshall), who are distinguished for their learning and legal acquirements. 

The Lunatic Asylum is one of the noblest institutions of Kentucky, and re- 
flects immortal honor upon the city which founded and the commonwealth which 
sustains it. The buildings are very extensive and commodious, the rooms large 
and well ventilated, warmed by flues which conduct the heated air through the 
house. The grounds connected with the asylum embrace an area of thirty acres, 
and are handsomely improved and ornamented with a variety of beautiful shrub- 
bery. The garden is cultivated entirely by the patients themselves, and affords 
sufficient vegetables for the supply of the institution. Dr. ALLEN, who has been 
for many years the superintendent, is eminently qualified for the important and 
very responsible position he occupies; and the cures effected under his supervi- 
sion and treatment, bear as large a proportion to the number admitted as appear 
in the reports of any other insane institution in the United States. The admirable 
adaptation of the architectural arrangements the complete classification of the 
patients the moral and well-educated attendants, and the judicious system of 
treatment pursued by the superintendent, happily adapted to every form of the dis- 
ease, ensure the attainment of as complete success as is possible in this branch 
of the medical art, and must be felt and acknowledged by all who have had an 
opportunity to observe the excellent plan upon which the institution is conducted. 

ATHENS is a small but handsome village, situated ten miles from 
Lexington, on the Boonsborough road, and in sight of Boone's 
station surrounded by a rich and fertile country, with an intel- 
ligent, industrious and moral community. It has two churches, 
two physicians, one lawyer, three stores, one school and twenty 
mechanics' shops population 350. 

Bryant's station, about five miles north-east of Lexington, was settled by the 
Bryants in 1779. In 1781, Bryant's station was much harassed by small par- 
ties of Indians. This was a frontier post, and greatly exposed to the hostilities 
of the savages.* It had been settled in 1779 by four brothers from North Caro- 
lina, one of whom, William, had married a sister of Colonel Daniel Boone. The 
Indians were constantly lurking in the neighborhood, waylaying the paths, steal- 
ing their horses, and butchering their cattle. It at length became necessary to 
hunt in parties of twenty or thirty men, so as to be able to meet and repel those 
attacks, which were every day becoming more bold and frequent. 

One afternoon, about the 20th of May, William Bryant, accompanied by 
twenty men, left the fort on a hunting expedition down the Elkhorn creek. They 
moved with caution, until they had passed all the points where ambuscades had 
generally been formed, when, seeing no enemy, they became more bold, and de- 
termined, in order to sweep a large extent of country, to divide their company 
into two parties. One of them, conducted by Bryant in person, was to descend 
the Elkhorn on its southern bank, flanking out largely, and occupy as much 
ground as possible. The other, under the orders of James Hogan, a young 
farmer in good circumstances, was to move down in a parallel line upon the north 
bank. The two parties were to meet at night, and encamp together at the mouth 
of Cane run. 

Each punctually performed the first part of their plans. Hogan, however, had 
traveled but a few hundred yards, when he heard a loud voice behind him ex- 

* McClung's Sketches. 


claim in very good English, "stop, boys!" Hastily looking back, they saw 
several Indians, on foot, pursuing them as rapidly as possible. Without halting 
to count numbers, the party put spurs to their horses, and dashed through the 
woods at full speed, the Indians keeping close behind them, and at times gaining 
upon them. There was a led horse in company, which had been brought with 
them for the purpose of packing game. This was instantly abandoned, and fell 
into the hands of the Indians. Several of them lost their hats in the eagerness 
of flight; but quickly getting into the open woods, they left their pursuers so far 
behind, that they had leisure to breathe and inquire of each other, whether it was 
worth while to kill their horses before they had ascertained the number of the 

They quickly determined to cross the creek, and await the approach of the In- 
dians. If they found them superior to their own and Bryant's party united, they 
would immediately return to the fort; as, by continuing their march to the mouth 
of Cane run, they would bring a superior enemy upon their friends, and endan- 
ger the lives of the whole party. They accordingly crossed the creek, dis- 
mounted, and awaited the approach of the enemy. By this time it had become 
dark. The Indians were distinctly heard approaching the creek upon the opposite 
side, and after a short halt, a solitary warrior descended the bank and began to 
wade through the stream. 

Hogan waited until he had emerged from the gloom of the trees which 
grew upon the bank, and as soon as he had reached the middle of the stream, 
where the light was more distinct, he took deliberate aim and fired. A great 
splashing in the water was heard, but presently all became quiet. The pursuit 
was discontinued, and the party remounting their horses, returned home. Anx- 
ious, however, to apprize Bryant's party of their danger, they left the fort before 
daylight on the ensuing morning, and rode rapidly down the creek, in the direc- 
tion of the mouth of Cane. When within a few hundred yards of the spot 
where they supposed the encampment to be, they heard the report of many guns 
in quick succession. Supposing that Bryant had fallen in with a herd of buffalo, 
they quickened their march in order to take part in the sport. 

The morning was foggy, and the smoke of the guns lay so heavily upon the 
ground that they could see nothing until they had approached within twenty 
yards of the creek, when they suddenly found themselves within pistol shot of a 
party of Indians, very composedly seated upon their packs, and preparing their 
pipes. Both parties were much startled, but quickly recovering, they sheltered 
themselves, as usual, and the action opened with great vivacity. The Indians 
maintained their ground for half an hour with some firmness, but being hard 
pressed in front, and turned in flank, they at length gave way, and being closely 
pursued, were ultimately routed, with considerable loss, which, however, could 
not be distinctly ascertained. Of Hogan's party, one man was killed on the 
spot, and three others wounded, none mortally. 

It happened that Bryant's company had encamped at the mouth of Cane, as 
had been agreed upon, and were unable to account for Hogan's absence. That, 
about daylight, they had heard a bell at a distance, which they immediat