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Full text of "History of Indianapolis and Marion County, Indiana"

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977 201 

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1147133 j 



GENEALOGY COLLECTION 



ijjf'-'-EN COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARY 



3 1833 02300 1784 



HISTOKY 



[NDIANAPOIvIS 



MARION COUNTY, 



INDIANA. 



B. R. SULGROVE. 



I Xj Xj TJ S T I?y j^T E ID. 



PHILADELPHIA: 
I.. H. EVERTS & CO. 

1884. 



PREFACE. 1117133 



In a history mainly composed of the incidents that indicate the growth of a community, 
and the direction and character of it, where few are important enough to require an extended 
narration, and the remainder afford little material, it is not easy to construct a continuous narra- 
tive, or to so connect the unrelated points as to prevent the work taking on the aspect of a pre- 
tentious directory. To collect in each year the notable events of it is to make an excellent ware- 
house of historical material ; but, however authentic, it would hardly be interesting. Like the 
country boy's objection to a dictionary, " the subject would change too often." To combine, as 
far as practicable, the authenticity of an annuary like that of Mr. Ignatius Brown in 1868, 
which has been freely used, or the compilation of statistical and historical material made by Mr. 
Joseph T. Long for Holloway's History in 1870, which has furnished valuable help in this 
work, with some approach to the interest of a connected narrative, it has been thought best to 
present, first, a general history of the city and the county up to the outbreak of the civil war, 
throwing together in it all incidents which have a natural association with each other or with 
some central incident or locality, so as to make a kind of complete affair of that class of incidents. 
For instance, the first jail is used to gather a group of the conspicuous crimes in the history of 
the county, the old court-house to note the various uses to which it was put during the city's 
progress through the nonage of a country town to the maturity of a municipal government. 
Since the war the historj^ was thought more likely to be made intelligible and capable of reten- 
tion and reference by abandoning the form of a continuous narrative interjected with groups of 
related incidents or events, and divide it into departments, and treat each fully enough to cover 
all the points related to it that could be found in an annuary, or a separation of the events of 
each year to itself. Thus it has been the purpose to throw into the chapter on schools all that is 
worth telling of what is known of the early schools, besides what is related of them in the gen- 
eral history, with no special reference to the date of any school, while the history of the public 
schools is traced almost exclusively by official reports and documents. In manufactures it would 
have been impossible to present a consecutive account if a chronological order had been followed, 
for the facts are scattered through fifty years, from 1832 to 1882. By taking the whole subject 



PREFACE. 



apart from the events with whicli its various parts are associated by date, it is possible to group- 
them so as to present a tolerably complete view of tiie origin and progress of each part and of 
the whole. The militar}' rosters contain all the names of Marion County soldiers in the civil 
war who enlisted for three years. The list of civil officers of the county is complete and accu- 
rate, and was compiled for this work. It is the first ever published, as is that of the township 
and city. The entries of land from 1821 to 1825 will be found an interesting feature of the, 
work, and will recall the name of many an old settler who is almost forgotten now. Mr. Now-| 
land's interesting reminiscences and those of the late Hon. O. H. Smith have been freely used, \ 
as well as the memories of some old settlers, as Mr. Robert B. Duncan, Gen. Coburn, William i 
H. Jones, Daniel Noe, and the writer's own occasionally. The histories of the townships have ' 
been compiled substantially from the accounts of the oldest and best-known settlers in each. 

B. R. S. J 
Indianapolis, Feb. 14, 1884. I 



CONTENTS. 



CHAPTER I. 

PAGE 

Location of Marion County — Topographical and General 
Description — Geology of the County — The Indian Oc- 
cupation 1 

CHAPTEK II. 

Special Features of the City of Indianapolis — Area and 
Present Condition — General View and Historical Outline 10 

CHAPTER III. 

First Period — Early Settlements — Organization of Marion 
County and Erection of Townships— Erection of Public 
Buildings — Notable Events and Incidents of the Early 
Settlement and of Later Tears — Opening of Roads — 
Original Entries of Lands in the County 21 

CHAPTER IV. 

Social Condition of the Early Settlers — Amusements — Re- 
ligious Worship — Music — General Description of Pio- 
neer Life in Marion County — Diseases once Prevalent 
— -Causes of Diminution 68 

CHAPTER V. 
Second Period— The Capital in the Woods 96 

CHAPTER VI. 
CiTT OF Indianapolis 132 

CHAPTER VII. 

City op Indianapolis (Continued). 

Commercial and Mercantile Interests of the City 151 

CHAPTER VIII. 

City of I.vdianapolis (Continued). 

The Bench and Bar 169 

CHAPTER IX. 

City of Indianapolis (Continued). 

Banks, Bankers, and Insurance 215 



CHAPTER X. 

City op Indianapolis (Continued). 



CHAPTER XI. 
City of Indianapolis (Continued). 
Public Buildings — Public Halls — Theatres — Lectures — 
Concerts — Musical and Art Societies — Literary and 
other Clubs— Hotels 249 

CHAPTER XII. 

City of Indianapolis (CoH(i'imed). 

Medical Practice and Practitioners 274 

CHAPTER XIII. 

Military Matters. 
Military Organizations in Indianapolis— Marion County 
in the War of the Rebellion 300 

CHAPTER XIV. 

Marion County in the War of the Rbbellion. 
Sketches of the Services of Regiments — Roster of Officers 
and Enlisted Men from Marion County serving in the 
Several Regiments 322 

CHAPTER XV. 
Orders, Societies, and Charitable Institutions of In- 
dianapolis 366 

CHAPTER XVI. 
Churches op Indianapolis 387 

CHAPTER XVII. 
Schools and Libraries of Indianapolis 417 

CHAPTER XVIII. 
Manufacturing Interests of the City of Indianapolis 440 



CONTENTS. 



CHAPTER XIX. 
CiTiL List of Indiakapolis and Marios Codnty 

CHAPTER XX 


PAOE 

.... 486 
501 


CHAPTER XXIV. 


575 


CHAPTER XXV. 


596 


CHAPTER XXI. 


... 506 


CHAPTER XXVI. 


613 


CHAPTER XXII. 


... 519 


CHAPTER XXVII. 


623 


CHAPTER XXIII. 
Lawrence Tow.ssoip 


... 534 


CHAPTER XXVIII. 
Wayne Township 


647 



ILLUSTKATIONS. 



Aston, George W facing 603 

Atkins,E.C ' " 470 

Atkins, E. C. A Co., Works of. " 469 

Ayres, Levi " 506 

Bank of Commerce 21S 

Bates, Hervey facing 35 

Beaty, David Sanford " 154 

Bell, W. A 426 

Bessonies, J. F. A 410 

Bird, Abram facing 155 

Blake, James " 86 

Bobbs, John S " 281 

Brown, Hirara 171 

Brown, S. M facing 296 

Butler, John M " 204 

Butler, Ovid " 176 

Canby, Samuel " 502 

Carey, Jason S " 461 

Carey, Simeon B " 159 

Caven, John " 209 

Chamber of Commerce 167 

Comingor, J. A facing 284 

Compton, J. A " 288 

Cooper, John J " 218 

Dean Brothers, Works of " 467 

Defrees, John D " 240 

Douglass, John 235 

Dumont, Ebenezer 308 

Duncan, Robert B 174 

Edson, H. A facing 398 

Emigrant Scene 73 

Evans, I. P. &, Co., Manufactory of facing 482 

Fletcher, Calvin, Sr " 169 

Fletcher, M. J " 440 

Fletcher, S. A., Jr " 468 

Fletcher, S. A., Sr " 219 

Fletcher, W. B " 285 

Funkhouser, David " 279 

Gall, Alois D " 293 

Gordon, J. W " 180 

Griffith, Humphrey " 161 



PAOE 

Hannah, Samuel facing 216 

Hannaman, William " 163 

Harvey, T. B " 282 

Haughey, Theo. P 227 

Haymond, W. S facing 290 

Henderson, William " 205 

Hendricks, Thomas A " 200 

Hetherington, B. F " 466 

Holland, J. W 154 

Holliday, William A facing 392 

Holmes, W. C " 226 

Howard, Edward " 291 

Howland, E. J " 505 

Howland, Morris " 595 

Hyde, N. A 414 

Indianapolis in 1S20 facing 30 

Johnson, James " 665 

Johnson, Oliver " 646 

Johnson, William 158 

Jones, Aquilla facing 474 

Kingan & Co between 444, 445 

Lilly, J. 0. D facing 480 

Macy, David " 229 

Malott, V. T " 224 

Mansur, Isaiah " 225 

Marion County Court-House " 250 

Marion County Court-House in 1823 251 

McCarty, Nicholas facing 99 

McDonald, J. E " 202 

McGaughey, Samuel " 297 

McKernan, J. H " 166 

McLaughlin, G. H " 400 

McOuat, R. L " 160 

Merritt, George " 478 

Moore, .John " 503 

Moore, Thomas " 604 

Morris, Morris " 217 

Morris, T. A " 301 

Morton, Oliver P " 186 

Mothershead, John L " 278 

National Road Bridge over White River 108 

vii 



ILLUSTRATIONS. 



PAGE 

New, George W % facing 292 

Norwood, George ** 442 

Palmer, N. B " 215 

Parry, Charles " 276 

Patterson, S. J " 441 

Pattison, C. B " 157 

Peck, E. J " 156 

Perkins, S. E " 182 

Piel, William F " 452 

Porter, A. G " 206 

Ramsay, John F " 165 

Ray, James M " 105 

Ritzinger, Frederick " 230 

Rockwood, William " 472 

Root, Deloss " 465 

Schooley, Thomas " 533 

Sharpe, Thomas H " 220 

Site of Union Passenger Depot in 1838 137 

Sinker, E. T facing 464 

Spiegel, Augustus " 456 



PAGE 

Streight, A. D facing 314 

Sullivan, Wm " 178 

Thomas, John " 471 

Talbott, W. H " 162 

Todd, R. N " 283 

Tomlinson, Geo " 596 

Toon, Martin S " 534 

United States Arsenal " 305 

Vance, L. M " 153 

Wagon-Train on National Road 95 

Walker, Isaac C facing 286 

Walker, Jacob S 164 

Walker, John C facing 294 

Washington Street, Views of 266 and 267 

Wood, John 152 

Woodburn "Sarven Wheel" Co facing 460 

Woollen, Wm.W " 214 

Wright, C. E " 287 

Yandes, Daniel " 100 



BIOGRAPHICAL. 



FAQE 

Atkins, E. C 469 

Ayres, Levi 506 

Barbour, Laoian 214a 

Bates, Hervey 35 

Beaty, David Sanford, 153 

Bell, W. A 426 

Bessoniea, J. F. A 409 

Bird. Abram 155 

Blake, James 86 

Bobbs, John S 281 

Bradley, John H 214b 

Brown. Hiram 171 

Brown, John G 505 

Brown, S. M 296 

Butler, John M 204 

Butler, Ovid 175 

Can by, Samuel 503 

Carey, H. G 228 

Carey, Jason S 461 

Carey, Simeon B 159 

Caven, John 209 

Coburn, John 214c 

Comingor, J. A 284 

Compton, J. A 288 

Cooper,John J 217 

Culley, David V 236 

Dcfrees, John D 239 

Douglass, John 235 

Dumont, Ebenezer 308 

Duncan, Robert B 174 

Edson, H. A 397 

Elliott, B. K 214d 

Finch, F. M 214d 

Fletcher, Calvin, Sr 169 

Fletcher, M. J 440 

Fletcher, S. A., Sr 219 

Fletcher, S. A., Jr 468 

Fletcher, W. B 285 

Funkhouser, David 279 

Gall, Alois D 293 

Gordon, J. W 180 



PAOI 

GriflSth, Humphrey 161 

Hannah, Samuel 215 

Hannaman, William 162 

Harrison, Gen. Benjamin 214d 

Harvey, T. B 282 

Haughey, Theodore P 226 

Haymond, W. S 290 

Henderson, William 205 

Hendricks, A. W 214f 

Hendricks, Thomas A 199 

Hetherington, B. F 466 

Hines, Judge 214e 

Holland, J. W 154 

Holman, John A 185 

Holmes, W. C 226 

Holliday, William A 392 

Herd, Oscar B 214p 

Howard, Edward 291 

Howland, E. J 505 

Howland, Morris 595 

Hyde, N. A 414 

Jameson, Patrick H 280 

Johnson, James 665 

Johnson, Oliver 646 

Johnson, William 158 

Jones, Aquilla 474 

Knefler, Fred 214b 

Lilly, J. 0. D 480 

Macy, David 229 

Malott, V. T 223 

Mansur, Isaiah 225 

McDonald, J. E 201 

McCarty, Nicholas 99 

McGaughey, Samuel 297 

McKernan, J. H 165 

McLaughlin, G. H .399 

McOuat, R. L 160 

Merritt, George 478 

Moore, John 503 

Moore, Thomas 504 

Morris, Morris 216 



BIOGRAPHICAL. 



PAOE 

Morton, Oliver P 186 

Morris, T. A 301 

Motbershead, John L 278 

Newoomb, Horatio C 214a 

New, George W 292 

New, John C 214f 

Norwood, George 442 

O'Neal, Hugh 214a 

Palmer, N. B 215 

Parry, Charles 276 

Patterson, S. J 441 

Pattison, C. B 157 

Perkins, S. E 182 

Peck, E. J 156 

Porter, A. G 206 

Piel, William F 453 

Qaarles, William 214a 

Ramsay, John F 163 

Ray, James M 105 

Ritzingcr, Frederick 230 

Root, Deloss 465 

Rockwood, William 472 

Scbooley, Thomas 533 



PAO 

Sharpe, Thomas H 220 

Sinker, E. T *64 

Spiegel, Angustns '156 

Streight, A. D 314 

Sullivan, William HS 

Talbott, W. H 162 

Taylor, N. B 214c 

Thomas, John 471 

Todd, R. N ^ 283 

Tomlinson, George 596 

Toon, Martin S 533 

Vance, L. M 153 

Walker, Isaac C 286 

Walker, Jacob S 164 

Walker, John C 294 

Wallace, David 203 

Wallace, William 214b 

Wishard, William W 594 

Wood, John 152 

Wright, C. E 287 

Woollen, William W 213 

i, Daniel 100 



HISTOET 

OP 

INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



CHAPTER I. 

Location of Marion County — Topograpliical and General De- 
scription — Geology of the County — The Indian Occupation. 

Marion County, in which is the city of ludian- 
apolis, the capital of Indiana, occupies a central posi- 
tion in the State (as is mentioned more particularly 
hereafter), and is bounded on the north by the coun- 
ties of Boone and Hamilton, on the east by Hancock 
and Shelby, on the south by Morgan and Johnson, 
and on the west by Hendricks County. Its shape 
would be almost an exact square but for an inac- 
curacy in the government survey, which makes a pro- 
jection of four miles or sections in length by about 
three-fourths of a mile in width at the northeast 
corner into the adjoining county of Hancock, with a 
recess on the opposite side of equal length, and about 
one-fourth of the width, occupied by a similar pro- 
jection from Hendricks County. The civil townships 
of the county follow the lines of the Congressional 
townships in direction, except at the division of the 
townships of Decatur and Perry, which follows the 
line of White River, taking off a considerable area of 
the former and adding it to the latter township. 
The area of the county is about two hundred and 
sixty thousand acres. 

Topography and General Features. — Indian- 
apolis, which is the county-seat of Marion as well as 
the State capital, lies in latitude 39° 55', longitude 
86° 5', very nearly in the centre of the State and 
county. Mr. Samuel Merrill makes it two miles 
northwest of the centre of the State, and one mile 
1 



southwest of the centre of the county. Professor 
R. T. Brown's Official Survey, in the " State Geol- 
ogist's Report," regards the entire county as part of a 
great plain, nowhere, however, actually level over any 
considerable areas, with an average elevation above 
low water in the river of about one hundred and sev- 
enty-five feet, and of eight hundred and sixty above 
the sea-level. Occasional elevations run to more than 
two hundred feet above the river-level, and probably 
to nine hundred above the sea. The West Fork of 
White River, running for twenty-two miles in a 
very tortuous course twenty degrees east of north and 
west of south, divides the county unequally, the 
western fraction being little more than half as large 
as the eastern, or one-third of the whole area. The 
river valley varies from one to four miles in width, 
presenting a bluff on the west side of fifty to two 
hundred feet through most of its extent, and on 
the east side a gentle slope. Where the bluff comes 
up to the water on one side the " bottom" recedes on 
the other, sometimes swampy, and frequently cut up 
by " bayous" or supplementary outlets for freshets. 
The current is on the bluff side, usually deep, swift, 
and clear. Occasionally the low " bottom" land comes 
up to the water on both banks, but not frequently. 
There are many gentle slopes and small elevations in 
and around the city, but nothing that deserves the 
name of hill, except " Crown Hill," at the cemetery 
north of the city, and one or two smaller protuber- 
ances a mile or two south. All the streams that drain 
this undulating plain flow in a general southwesterly 
direction on the east side of the river, and south- 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



easterly on the west side, proving, as the first secre- 
tary of the State Board of Health says, that Indian- 
apolis lies in a basin, the grade higher on all sides 
than is the site of the city, except where the river 
makes its exit from the southwest. 

Subordinate Valleys. — Dr. Brown says that "the 
glacial action, which left a heavy deposit of transported 
material over the whole surface of the county, has at 
the same time plowed out several broad valleys of 
erosion, which appear to be tributary to the White 
River Valley." The most conspicuous of these comes 
down from the northeast, between Fall Creek and 
White River, is about a mile wide at the lower end, 
narrowing to the northeast for six or seven miles, and 
disappearing near the northern line of the county. 
The grinding force has cut away the surface clay, and 
in places filled the holes with gravel and coarse sand. 
South of the city and east of the river are two other 
valleys of the same kind. One, about a mile wide, 
extends from White River, a little north of Glenn's 
Valley, about five miles to the northeast, with well- 
defined margins composed of gravel terraces. The 
other lies chiefly in the county south of Marion, and 
between it and the first-mentioned is a ridge called 
Poplar Hill, composed of sand and gravel on a bed of 
blue clay. West of the river there is but one of these 
valleys. It begins in Morgan County, and running 
a little north of east enters Marion County, passing 
between West Newton and Valley Mills, and connect- 
ing with White River Valley near the mouth of 
DoUarhide Creek. A water-shed between the tribu- 
taries of the West Fork of White River and the East 
Fork, or Driftwood, enters the county two miles from 
the southeast corner, passing nearly north about 
twelve miles, makes an eastward bend and passes out 
of the county. Unlike water-sheds generally, this 
one is not a ridge or considerable elevation, but a 
marshy region overflowed in heavy rains, when it is 
likely enough the overflow runs into either river as 
chance or the wind directs it. These swampy sections 
lying high are readily drained, and make excellent 
farming land. 

Streams. — Except Eagle Creek and its affluents, 
there are no considerable streams entering the river 
in the county on the west side. There are Crooked 



Creek north of Eagle, and Dollarhide Creek south, 
and several still smaller and unnamed, except for 
neighborhood convenience, but they are little more 
than wet weather " branches," or drains of swampy 
sections. Dr. Brown explains this paucity of water- 
courses by the fact that a large stream called White 
Lick rises northwe.st, flows along, partly in Hendricks 
and partly in Marion Counties, parallel with the course 
of the river, and enters the latter in Morgan County, 
thus cutting off the eastward course of minor streams 
by receiving their waters itself. On the east side of 
the river, which contains nearly two-thirds of the area 
of the county, a considerable stream called Grass Creek 
runs almost directly south for a dozen or more miles 
very near the eastern border of the county, and finally 
finds its way into the East Fork. It has a half-dozen 
or more little tributaries, as Buck Creek, Panther 
Run, Indian Creek, Big Run, Wild Cat and Doe 
Creek. Of the east side streams tributary to the 
West Fork of White River — far better known as 
White River than the short course of the combined 
East and West Forks to the Wabash — Fall Creek is 
much the most considerable. Except it, but a single 
small stream called Dry Run enters the river north 
of the city. Fall Creek enters the county very near 
the northeast corner, and flowing almost southwest- 
erly enters the river now near the northwest corner 
of the city. It formerly entered west of the centre 
of the city, but a " cut-ofi'" was made nearly a mile 
or more farther north for hygienic and economic 
reasons, and the mouth has thus been shifted con- 
siderably. The main tributaries of Pall Creek are 
Mud Creek on the north, and North Fork, Middle 
Fork, Dry Branch, and Indian Creek east and south. 
The duplication of names of streams will be observed. 
There are two Buck Creeks, two Dry, two Lick (one 
White), two Indian, and two Eagle Creeks in the 
county. As few of these names are suggested by 
any special feature of the stream or country, except 
Fall Creek, which is named from the falls at Pendle- 
ton, and Mud and Dry Creeks, the duplication may 
be set down to the whims of the pioneers. South of 
the city, on the east side of the river, the streams 
flowing directly into the river are Pogue's Creek, 
passing directly through the city; Pleasant Run, 



TOPOGRAPHY AND GENERAL FEATURES. 



mainly east and south, but cutting into the southeast 
corner of the city (Bean Creek is tributary to the 
latter), Lick Creek, and Buck Creek. 

Bottom Lands. — The valley of White River, says 
the Official Survey, is divided into alluvium or bottom 
land proper and the terrace or second bottom. In 
that portion of the valley that lies north of the mouth 
of Eagle Creek it consists chiefly of second bottom, 
while the first bottom largely predominates in the 
southern portion. Much of this latter is subject to 
overflow in times of freshets, so that while the soil is 
exceedingly fertile and easy of cultivation a crop is 
never safe. Levees have been made for considerable 
distances below the city, on the river and on some of 
the larger creeks, to remedy the mischief of overflows, 
but, the Survey says, with only partial success. The 
primary difiiculty is the tortuous courses of the 
streams, and of the river particularly, that runs a 
distance of sixteen miles to the lower county line, 
which is but nine in a straight line. This not only 
diminishes the fall per mile, but the water, moving 
in curves and reversed curves, loses its momentum, 
the current becomes sluggish, and when freshets 
come the accumulation overflows the low banks, and 
covers large districts of cultivable and cultivated 
land, to the frequent serious injury of crops, and the 
occasional destruction of crops, fences, and stock. 
A straightened channel would increase the fall and 
the strength of the current, and in the sandy forma- 
tion of the beds of most of the streams would soon 
cut a way deep enough to secure the larger part of 
the land against overflow. This would be cheaper 
than making levees along a crooked course that re- 
quired two miles of work to protect one of direct 
length, but it would have to be carried out by a con- 
cert of action on the part of riparian proprietors, 
which would be hard to efifect, and it would also di- 
vide a good many farms that are now bounded by 
original lines of survey terminating at the river, 
which was made a navigable stream by law but not 
by nature. Changing the bed would confuse the 
numbers of sections, and possibly disturb some land 
titles. This objection is presented to this policy in 
Professor Brown's Survey, but an act of the Legisla- 
ture might open a way for concerted action, and pro- 



vide against the confusion of lines and disturbance of 
rights. 

Flora. — The central region of Indiana was a favor- 
ite hunting-ground of the Indian tribes that sold it 
in 1818. Its woods and waters were unusually full 
of game. There were no prairies of any extent and 
not many swamps. The entire surface was densely 
covered with trees. On the uplands, which were 
dry and rolling, the sugar, white and blue ash, black 
walnut, white walnut or butternut, white oak, red 
beech, poplar, wild cherry prevailed ; on the more 
level uplands were bur-oak, white elm, hickory, white 
beech, water ash, soft maple, and others ; on the first 
and second bottoms, sycamore, buckeye, black wal- 
nut, blue ash, hackberry, and mulberry. Grape- 
vines, bearing abundantly the small, pulpless acid 
fruit called " coon" grapes, grew profusely in the 
bottoms, covering the largest trees, and furnishing 
more than ample stores for the preserves and pies of 
the pioneer women. Under all these larger growths, 
especially in the bottoms, there were dense crops of 
weeds, among which grew equally dense thickets of 
spice-brush, — the backwoods substitute for tea, — 
papaw, wahoo, wild plum, hazel, sassafras, red and 
black haw, leatherwood, prickly ash, red-bud, dog- 
wood, and others. The chief weed growths, says 
Professor Brown, were nettles and pea-vines matted 
together, but with these were Indian turnip, — the 
most acrid vegetable on earth probably, — ginseng, 
cohosh, lobelia, and, in later days, perfect forests of 
iron-weeds. There are a good many small remains of 
these primeval forests scattered through the county, 
with here and there patches of the undergrowth, and 
not a few nut-trees, walnut, hickory, and butternut, 
but the hazel, the spicewood, the sassafras, the plum 
and black haw and papaw are never seen anywhere 
near the city, and not frequently anywhere in the 
county. The Indian turnip is occasionally found, 
but ginseng has disappeared as completely as the 
mound-builders, though in the last generation it was 
an article of considerable commercial importance. 

Fauna. — The principal animals in these primeval 
woods were the common black bear, the black and 
gray wolf, the buiFalo, deer, raccoon, opossum, fox, 
gray and red squirrels, rabbits, mink, weasel, of land 



HISTOEY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



quadrupeds ; of the water, otter, beaver, muskrat ; 
of birds, the wild turkey, wild goose, wild duck, wild 
pigeon, pheasant, quail, dove, and all the train of 
wood birds which the English sparrow has so largely 
driven off, — the robin, bluebird, jaybird, woodpecker, 
tomtit, sap-sucker, snowbird, thrush. For twenty 
years or more laws have protected the game birds, 
and there is said to be a marked increase of quail 
in the last decade, but there is hardly any other kind 
of game bird, unless it be an occasional wild pigeon, 
snipe, or wild duck. Buzzards, hawks, crows, owls, 
blackbirds are not frequently seen now near the city, 
though they were all abundant once. Flocks of black- 
birds and wild pigeons occasionally pass along, but 
not numerously enough to attract the hunter. In 
fact, there is very little worth hunting in the county, 
except rabbits, quail, and remote squirrels. For fish 
the game varieties are almost wholly confined to the 
bass and red-eye. Water scavengers like the '• cat" 
and " sucker" are thick and big in the off-flow of the 
city pork-houses, and in the season form no inconsider- 
able portion of the flesh-food of the class that will 
fish for them, but game fish must be sought for from 
five to ten miles from the city. In early days, and 
for the first twenty-five years of the existence of the 
city, the river and its larger affluents supplied ample 
provision of excellent fish, — bass, pike, buffalo, red- 
eye, salmon rarely, and the cleaner class of inferior 
fish, as " red-horse," suckers, cats, eels ; but the im- 
providence of pioneers, who never believed that any 
natural supply of food could fail, and the habits ac- 
quired from them, particularly the destructiveness of 
seining, has reduced the food population of streams 
till it needs stringent laws, and the vigilance of asso- 
ciations formed to enforce the laws, to prevent total 
extirpation. Even with these supports it will take 
careful and prolonged efforts at restocking to repro- 
duce anything like the former abundance. 

Mineral Springs. — Although they form no con- 
spicuous feature of the topography of the county, 
and have never been used medicinally, except by the 
neighbors, it may be well to note that there are a few 
springs of a mineral and hygienic character in the 
county, where the underground currents of water rise 
through crevices in the overlying bed of clay. One 



of these, called the Minnewa Springs, in Lawrent;e 
township, a mile and a half northeast of the little 
town of Lawrence, was talked of at one time as ca- 
pable of being made a favorite resort, and some steps 
were taken in that direction, but nothing came of 
them. Another very like it is within a half-mile of 
the same town. Southwest of the city is one on the 
farm of an old settler that has been famous in the 
neighborhood as a " .sulphur .spring" for fifty years. 
A couple of miles nearer the city is another on the 
farm of Fielding Beeler, which Professor Brown 
says is the largest in the county. " It forms a wet 
prairie or marsh of several acres, from which by 
ditching a large stream of water is made to flow." 
The water of all these springs contains iron enough 
to be readily tasted, and to stain the vessels that are 
used in it. and this peculiarity gives it the misname 
of sulphur water. 

Swavips. — There were once considerable areas of 
marshy land, or land kept wet by the overflow of ad- 
jacent streams, but many of these have been entirely 
drained, and considerable portions of others larger 
and less convenient for drainage. With them have 
measurably disappeared the malarial diseases that in 
the first settlement of the city, and for a good many 
years after, came back as regularly as the seasons. 
There is not, probably, a single acre of land in the 
county that is not cultivable or capable of being 
made so. Between three and four miles southwest 
of city lay a swampy tract, nearly a mile long liy a 
quarter or more wide, entirely destitute of trees, 
which was long known in the vicinity as " the prairie," 
the only approach to a prairie in the county. 

Geology of the County.' — Marion County rests 
on three distinct geological members, two of them be- 
longing to the Devonian formation and one to the 
Carboniferous. Neither, however, shows itself con- 
spicuously on the surface. Upon these lies a deposit 
of drift, or transported material, from fifty to one 
hundred and fifty feet thick. This forms the surface 
of the country, and moulds its general configuration. 
But the rock foundation, in spite of the depth of the 



1 Condensed from Professor R. L. Brown's Official Survey, in 

the Report of Professor John Collett, State Geologist. 



GEOLOGY OF THE COUNTY. 



drift upon it, aflFects the face of tlie country some- 
what, most obviously along the line where the Knob 
sandstone overlaps the Genesee shale. The line of 
strike dividing the geological members traverses the 
county on a line from the south thirty degrees north- 
west. This line, as it divides the Corniferous lime- 
stone from the Genesee shale or black slate, passes 
between the city and the Hospital for the Insane, 
two miles west. Borings in the city reach the lime- 
stone at a depth of sixty to one hundred feet. It is 
the first rock encountered in place. At the hospital 
forty feet of shale was passed through before reach- 
ing the limestone. This shows the eastern part of 
the county as resting on the Corniferous limestone, 
and the western on the Delphi black slate or Gen- 
esee shale. Under a small area of the southwestern 
corner of the county the Knob or Carboniferous 
sandstone will be found covering the slate. On a 
sand-bar in the river, a short distance north of the 
Johnson County line, Professor Brown noticed after 
a freshet large pieces of slate that had been thrown 
out, indicating that the river had laid bare that rock 
at some near point. This gives the level of the bed 
of the river in the lower half of its course through 
the county. But a short distance west of the west 
line of the county some of the small tributaries of 
White Lick lay bare the lower members of the 
Knob sandstone. There are indications both on 
Pogue's Run and Pleasant Hun that the limestone 
lies very near their beds, but it is not likely that stone 
can ever be profitably quarried in the county. Geo- 
logical interest attaches to the deep deposits of drift 
that cover the stratified rocks. 

Drift. — The drift that covers our great Western 
plains, continues Dr. Brown's Survey, is foreign in 
character and general in deposition. It is not a pro- 
miscuous deposit of clay, sand, water-worn pebbles, 
and bowlders, like the Eastern glacial drift. These 
are all found in it, but with nearly as much regu- 
larity and order as is usually found in stratified rocks. 
At the base of this formation is almost invariably 
found a very compact lead-colored clay, with but few 
bowlders, and those invariably composed of quartzite, 
highly metamorphosed or trap rocks. Occasionally 
may be found thin deposits of very fine gray or yel- 



low sand, but they are not uniform. Between the 
clay and the rocks on which it rests is generally in- 
terposed a layer of coarse gravel or small silicious 
bowlders, from three to six feet thick. Sometimes, 
but rarely, this is wanting, and the clay lies directly 
upon the rock. In Marion County this clay-bed 
ranges from twenty to more than a hundred feet 
thick, and is very uniform in character throughout, 
except where the light strata or fine sand occur. 
Chemically it is an alumina silicate in a very fine 
state of division, and mechanically mixed with an 
exceedingly fine sand, which shows under the micro- 
scope as fragments of almost transparent quartz. It 
is colored by a proto-sulphide of iron. A small por- 
tion of lime and potassa and a trace of phosphoric 
acid can be discovered by analysis. Above tliis is 
generally found a few feet of coarse sand or fine 
gravel, and on this is twenty or thirty teet of a true 
glacial drift, of the promiscuous character of the 
glacial drift described by Eastern geologists. In and 
upon this drift are large bowlders of granite, gneiss, 
and trap, which are not found in their proper place 
nearer than the shore of Lake Superior, whence they 
have been carried, as is attested by the grooves and 
scratches in the exposed rock surfaces over which 
they have passed. In this upper drift are the gravel 
terraces, from which is obtained our best available 
material for road-making. The mass of it is a yellow 
or orange-colored clay, with a considerable quantity 
of sand, and lime enough to make the water passing 
through it hard. There is an astonishing number 
and size of bowlders in and upon this clay-bed. Two 
were measured by Dr. Brown which were nearly ten 
feet long by five wide, with four feet exposed above 
ground, and nobody knows how much below. In a 
few places bowlders are so thickly scattered as to ob- 
struct cultivation. In the central and northern por- 
tions of the county they are almost invariably of 
granite, in the south generally of gneiss or trap. 

Gravel Terraces. — The gravel terraces are gen- 
erally found in a succession of mound-like elevations, 
ten to fifty feet above the level of the surrounding 
plain, and usually rest on a compact clay. They are 
frequently arranged in lines running north, a little 
northeast and southwest. North of these mounds is 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



generally found a considerable space of level and 
often swampy lands, indicating the position of a 
mass of ice, under which a torrent has rushed with 
great force, excavating the clay below, piling up the 
heavier gravel and sand, and carrying the lighter clay 
and finer sand to be distributed over the country. 
When the ice disappeared the excavation would be a 
little lake, finally filled up with the lighter material 
borne from other terraces farther north. These ter- 
race formations, or " second bottoms," bordering the 
river on one side or the other nearly everywhere, 
have almost the same character and history as the 
gravel-beds of the uplands. They consist of deposits 
of gravel and coarse sand, resting on the lower blue 
clay, into which the river has cut its present channel. 
Formerly these plains, frequently three or four miles 
wide, were regarded as lake-like expansions of the 
river which had been silted up by its sediment, but 
an inspection of the material shows that the water 
from which the deposit was made was no quiet lake, 
but a current strong enough to bear onward all 
lighter material, leaving only the heavier gravel and 
Band behind. 

Lower Blue Clay. — The Ofiicial Survey concludes 
that the lower blue clay was deposited before the 
strata of clay, sand, and gravel that rest upon it, and 
are clearly traceable to glacial action, and that the 
conditions of its deposit were very difierent from the 
rush and tumult of water pouring from a melting 
glacier, though evidently deposited from water. The 
greater part of the material is very fine, and could 
have come only from very quiet waters, and from very 
deep waters too, as its compactness and solidity prove 
the existence of great pressure necessary to the pro- 
duction of those qualities. Besides the superposition 
of the glacial strata, the precedent deposition of the 
lower blue clay is indicated by the fact that the 
glacial action, exhibited over the whole surface of the 
country, made excavations in it by undermining cur- 
rents from dissolving glaciers which now form the 
small lakes so numerous in the northern part of the 
State. The southern end of Lake Michigan rests on 
this clay, and is excavated into it to an unknown 
depth. Another fact attesting the deposit of the 
lower clay anterior to the grinding and crushing era 



of moving mountains of ice, is the discovery at the 
bottom of it of the unbroken remains of coniferous 
trees, probably cypress or hemlock. In digging wells 
in the county logs ten to fifteen inches in diameter, i 
well preserved, have been found. Glacial action ac- 
companying or following the deposit of these trees 
would have crushed them. Dr. Brown suggests a 
theory of the deposition of this clay-bed. If the 
glacial era was preceded by an upheaval that raised 
the region of the Arctic Circle above the line of per- 
petual congelation, there would necessarily have been 
a corresponding depression south of the elevation, 
which would be an inland sea of fresh water. During 
the whole period of the progress of this upheaval 
north and sinking south (in our region) torrents of 
water loaded with sediment would have rushed down 
and filled the huge hollow. As the waters became 
quiet the sediment would be slowly deposited. The 
color of the clay, caused by the combination of sul- 
phur and iron, proves that these waters were originally 
charged with sulphurous gases produced by volcanic 
agencies. The presence of these gases explains the 
absence of life in this fresh-water sea till the sulphur- 
tainted sediment was entirely deposited, when the in- 
creasing cold would cover it with an impervious crust 
of ice, cutting off all access of air and the possibility 
of life. There are no fossil remains in the clay. With 
the end of the Ice Age came a reversal of conditions, 
the northern regions sinking, those about here rising 
and pouring their waters southward into the Gulf of 
Mexico in furious torrents strengthened by the melt- 
ing of great masses of ice, thus furnishing much of 
the material of the Mississippi delta, and leaving 
marks of denudation on the hills of Kentucky, Ten- 
nessee, and Alabama. 

Economical Service of the Clay-Bed. — This lower 
clay stratum when exposed to the air for a few years 
undergoes chemical changes which make it the basis 
of a very fertile soil. Frost breaks down its adhe- 
siveness and makes it a mass of crumbling, porous 
earth. The oxygen of the air converts the sulphur 
into an acid which unites with the potash and lime 
accessible to it and makes slowly-soluble salts of them, 
which supply valuable elements of fertility for years 
of cultivation, needing only organic matter to be 



GEOLOGY OF THE COUNTY. 



available at once for use. It is an excellent absorbent 
owing to the fineness of its material, and might be 
advantageously used in composting manures, as it 
would retain ammonia as sulphate. Of greater value, 
at least to the city, than its fertilizing quality is its 
action, as a filter, securing an inexhaustible supply of 
pure water in the bowlders and gravel beneath it. In 
a region as level as Marion County, and as prolific of 
vegetation, the surface water must become charged 
with organic matter, which the porous upper strata of 
soil, sand and clay, but imperfectly retain, so that 
the water of springs and shallow wells is rarely so 
pure as to be suitable for domestic use. These im- 
purities are, of course, increased in the vicinity of 
residences, barns, and stables, and still more in cities, 
where there are large quantities of excrementitious 
matter. Surface water more or less tainted in this 
way is readily absorbed by the porous soil, and may 
reach the bottom of wells of twenty feet in depth. 
Against the inevitable and incalculable evil of a cor- 
rupted water supply, as that of Indianapolis would be 
if there were no other resource than the surface water 
of shallow wells, this blue clay stratum is an ample 
and admirable provision. It acts as a filter to the 
reservoir in the gravel and bowlder bed beneath it. 
The water there is free from organic matter, though 
always sufficiently tainted with iron to be easily tasted 
and to color vessels used in it. This iron taint is an 
invariable characteristic of the water filtered through 
this blue clay, and gives the popular reputation of 
mineral water to springs of it that rise through fis- 
sures in the clay to the surface. The best known of 
these springs have been already referred to. In the 
city and several places outside of it wells have been 
sunk to the sub-clay water through sixty-seven to one 
hundred and eight feet, the water rising to various 
distances from the surface from eight to forty feet. 
The blue clay stratum runs from eight to sixty feet 
in thickness. The reservoir of water under this clay 
has no outlet except through openings in the clay, 
and in consequence can never be exhausted by natural 
drainage. To a large manufacturing centre like In- 
dianapolis the power derived from water in stream or 
steam is indispensable, and that, says the Survey, " we 
have under every acre of land in Marion County." 



Character of Soil. — The glacial drift furnishes 
the material for a soil that meets every demand of 
agriculture. Says the Survey, " Being formed by the 
decomposition of almost every variety of rook, it 
holds the elements of all in such a state of fine divis- 
ion as to give it excellent absorbent properties, and . 
enables it to retain whatever artificial fertilizers may 
be added. In its natural state the soil of the county 
generally has but one prominent defect, — the very fine 
material of which it is made lying so nearly level is 
easily saturated with water, and having no drainage 
below, except by slow filtration through the clay, is 
kept wet longer than usual. This necessitates the 
escape of a great part of it by surface evaporation, 
and this, especially in spring, delays the warming of 
the soil and its early preparation for summer crops. 
The condition of saturation has an unfavorable eflFect 
on the vegetable matter in the soil, excluding it from 
free contact with the air, and arresting its rapid de- 
composition, often changing it into humic acid, a 
chemical product injurious to crops. In the first and 
second bottom lands this defect is remedied by a 
stratum of gravel or coarse sand a few feet below the 
surface, which rapidly passes the water downwards 
and relieves the saturated surface. The same eflFect 
is produced on the clay uplands by a system of tile 
drainage. 

Ideal Section of the County. — The following 
measurements of the diflferent strata of an ideal sec- 
tion of the county are given by Dr. Brown from natu- 
ral sections, borings, and excavations made in different 
parts of the county. Beginning with the most recent 
formations, we have : 

Transported Material. 

1. Alluvium, or bottom land.... from 10 to 20 feet. 

2. Terrace formations, gravel 

and sand from 50 to 100 feet. 

3. True bowlder clay (glacial), from 40 to 110 feet. 

4. Blue sedimentary clay and 

sand from 20 to 120 feet. 

5. Bowlders and gravel from 5 to 15 feet. 

Rock ill Place. 

6. Knob sandstone (Carboniferous) 25 feet. 

7. Genesee slate (Devonian) 80 feet. 

8. Corniferous limestone (Devonian) 50 feet. 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



The corniferous limestone has been penetrated 
fifty feet, but its entire thickness at this point is 
undetermined, as its eastern outcrop is concealed by 
the heavy drift deposit. Nos. 1,2,6, and 7 underlie 
only portions of the county ; the other members are 
general in their distribution. 

The Indian Occupation. — The State of Indiana 
formed the central and largest portion of the terri- 
tory " held by the Miami Confederacy from time im- 
memorial," as Little Turtle, who led the Indians in 
St. Clair's defeat, told Gen. Wayne. There were but 
four tribes in this. Confederacy, the leading one being 
the Miamis, or, in early times, the Twightwees ; but 
divisions of four others quite as well known by his- 
tory and tradition were allowed entrance and resi- 
dence, — the Shawanese, Delawares, Kickapoos, and 
Pottawatomies. The Delawares occupied the region 
in and around Marion County, but the abundance of 
fish and game made it a favorite hunting-ground of 
all the tribes from the valley of the White Water, or 
Wah-he-ne-pay, to the valley of the White River, 
the Wah-me-ca-me-ca. On this account it was ob- 
stinately held by the Confederacy, and only surren- 
dered by the treaty of St. Mary's, 1818.' One of the 
principal Delaware towns stood on the bluff of White 
River, at the Johnson County line, where, says Pro- 
fessor Brown, was the residence of Big Fire, a lead- 
ing Delaware chief and friend of the whites. A 
blunder of ignorance or brutality came near making 
an enemy of him in 1812, as Cresap or Greathouse 
did of Logan in 1774. A band of Shawanese, an 
affiliated tribe of the Confederacy, but residing far- 
ther south, between the East Fork of White River 
(the Gun-daquah) and the Ohio, acting doubtless on 
the hostile impulse imparted by the great chief of 
the tribe, Tecumseh, massacred a white settlement at 
the Pigeon Roost, in Scott County, in 1812. The 
Madison Rangers in revenge penetrated to Big Fire's 
town, on the southern line of the county, and de- 
stroyed it. It would seem that there should have 
been little difficulty, to men as familiar with the loca- 
tions and modes of warfare of the Indians as these 
rangers, in ascertaining whether the war party of 

' With a reservation of occupancy till 1821. 



the Pigeon Roost massacre came from the north or 
not ; but whether there was or not no discrimination 
was made, and it required all Governor Harrison's 
diplomacy to keep Big Fire and his tribe from joining 
the forces against the government. " But few remains 
mark the site of this ruined town," says the professor. 
In Washington township, on the east side of the 
river, tradition places the site of another village older, 
— how much it is impossible to say or guess, further 
than the vague direction of conjecture by the fact 
that the place is overrun by a wood of sixty years' 
growth. Near the river i.s an old cemetery of the 
tribe, and near it are some unique remains of Indian 
residence, both uncovered occasionally by floods. 
These remains are " pits or ovens excavated in a very 
compact clay," as Professor Brown describes them, 
about two feet and a half in diameter and the same 
in depth, and burned on the inner surfaces like brick. 
In them have been found coals and ashes, and around 
them fragments of pottery. Their condition and con- 
tents would indicate that they were a sort of earthen- 
ware kettle, constructed by the ready process of dig- 
ging out the inside clay and burning the surface of 
the outside, instead of taking the clay for each in a 
separate mass, and moulding it and burning it and 
putting back in its new shape in the hole it came 
from in its old one. The Indians of this fertile 
region all cultivated corn and beans and pumpkins, 
and made sugar of "sugar water" in the early spring, 
by freezing it during the night and throwing away 
the ice, which contained no sugar, afterwards boiling 
it down and graining it. Flint arrow-heads, stone 
hatchets, chisels, and other implements of the 
" Stone Age" are found occasionally in the soil 
and gravel, especially in the southern part of the 
county, near Glenn's Valley, and these are said by 
Professor Brown's Report to be made in many cases 
of talcose slate, a rock found no nearer this region 
than the Cumberland Mountains or the vicinity of 
Lake Superior. The curious forms of some of them 
make it impossible to determine their use. The 
Official Survey reports no mounds or earthworks of ' 
the mound-builders or other prehistoric race in the 
county except these relics of the " Stone Age." 
There may be none now, but forty-five years ago 



THE INDIAN OCCUPATION. 



there were two considerable mounds in the city near 
the present line of Morris Street, one near the inter- 
section of the now nearly efiFaced canal and Morris 
Street, and the other a little farther east. The exca- 
vation of the canal opened one of them, and some 
complete skeletons and scattered bones and fragments 
of earthenware were found and taken possession of 
by Dr. John Richmond, then pastor of the only Bap- 
tist Church, as well as a practicing physician. The 
other was gradually plowed down, probably after 
being opened at the same time the first was, but no 
record or definite memory settles the question. 

For a number of years the agency of the Indians 
of Central Indiana was held at Conner's Station, 
some sixteen miles north of the city and about four 
beyond the present county line. William Conner, the 
first settler of the White River Valley, established 
himself there about 1800, after spending most of his 
youth and early manhood among the Indians, a num- 
ber of whose dialects he spoke fluently, and whose 
names and customs and modes of life he understood 
as well as if he had been one of the race. He was 
well acquainted with all the chiefs of the Shawanese, 
Miamis, Delawares, and other tribes, and was fre- 
quently employed as an interpreter and guide by 
Gen. Harrison. He was the guide of the army in 
the campaign that ended with the battle of Tippe- 
canoe, and in that made memorable by the "massacre 
of the Raisin River." He accompanied Gen. Har- 
rison in the march into Canada that was triumphantly 
concluded by the battle of the Thames and the death 
of Tecumseh, the greatest of all the Western Indian 
leaders, except possibly Pontiac. 

This particularity of reference to him is not im- 
pertinent, for his settlement was closely connected 
with that of the county, and he was long in active 
business as a merchant in the city. It may, there- 
fore, be apt as well as not uninteresting, to present 
the reader a fact almost wholly unknown in connec- 
tion with the death of Tecumseh. Vice-President 
Col. Richard M. Johnson, of Kentucky, was long 
credited with the honor, such as it was, of killing 
the Shawanese hero, but it was later claimed for one 
or two others, and the famous question " Who struck 
Billy Patterson ?" was hardly a burlesque on the idle 



babble, oral and printed, that worried the world as to 
who killed Tecumseh. Mr. Conner could iiavo set- 
tled the question if he had been disposed to thrust 
himself in the face of the public. But he was not, 
and the information comes now from Robert B. Dun- 
can, a leading lawyer of the city, who was clerk of the 
county for over twenty years, and when a lad lived 
with Mr. Conner as early as 1820. To him Mr. Con- 
ner told what he knew of the death of Tecumseh. 
He, as usual, was Gen. Harrbon's guide and inter- 
preter. After the battle of the Thames was over the 
body of a chief, evidently of great distinction from 
his dress and decorations, was found, and Mr. Conner 
was sent for to identify it. He said it was Tecum- 
seh's, and he knew the chief well. The situation, 
as he described it to Mr. Duncan, showed that the 
chief had been killed with a very small rifle-ball, 
which fitted a small rifle in the hands of a dead youth, 
who apparently liad been an aid or orderly of a major 
who lay dead near him, killed by a large ball, appar- 
ently from Tecumseh's gun. The solution of the case 
was, probably, that Tecumseh had killed the officer, 
the boy had killed the chief, and one of the chief's 
braves had killed the boy. 

The payments made to the Indians of this county 
and the adjacent territory by Mr. Conner at his 
agency were made in the spring, always in silver and 
always with strict honesty, but not always with ade- 
quate security, or any at all, against the payments 
getting back to the agent's hands in four prices for 
buttons and beads and calico, and more for whiskey. 
The process of payment was peculiar and curious. 
The Indians sat in a circle, each family in a separate 
group. The money came in due proportions of 
amount and denomination to pay the man in dollars, 
the wife in half-dollars, and the children in quarters, 
each getting the same number. Each recipient was 
given in advance a number of little sticks equal to 
the number of coins he was to get, and as he received 
a coin he was to give back a stick, and when his sticks 
were all gone he knew he had got all his money. 

By the treaty of cession of 1818 the Indians re- 
served the occupancy of the ceded territory, or " New 
Purchase," till 1821 ; but a few lingered about the 
streams, trapping and fishing, till the spring of 1824, 



10 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



when a company of freebooting whites, remnants 
of the old days of incessant Indian warfare, consist- 
ing of a leader named Harper, Hudson, Sawyer and 
son, and Bridge and son, killed two families of 
Shawanese, consisting of nine persons, — two men, 
three women, two boys, and two girls, — to rob 
them of their winter's collection of skins. The mas- 
sacre was on Fall Creek, where the Indians had been 
trapping through the winter, a few miles above the 
present county line. It alarmed the early settlers of 
the county greatly, for such murders had made local 
Indian wars, and brought bloody reprisals often, just 
as they do to-day. All but Harper were caught, 
the older murderers hung, young Sawyer convicted of 
manslaughter, and young Bridge of murder, but par- 
doned by Governor Ray on the scaiFold under the 
rope that had killed his father. These are said to 
have been the first men executed in the United States 
by due process of law for killing Indians. The paci- 
fication of the irritated tribes was complete, and this 
is about the last ever seen or known of Indians in or 
about Marion County, except the passage of the 
migrating tribes through the town in 1832. For 
many years there was visible a trace of Indian occu- 
pancy in a deep " cut" made in the blufi' bank of the 
old " Graveyard Pond," near where Merrill Street 
abuts upon the Vincennes Railroad. It was believed 
to have been made by a military expedition from 
Kentucky, on its way to the Wabash or the Wea 
settlements, for the convenience of getting baggage- 
or ammunition-wagons up the precipitous bins', but 
nobody appears to have been sure of either its pur- 
pose or its constructors. 

Though not particularly relevant to the matter of 
this history, it will not be uninteresting to its readers 
to know, as very few do know, that the celebrated 
speech of Logan, the Cayuga (sometimes called the 
Mingo) chief, which has been admired in all lands for 
its manly and pathetic eloquence, beginning, " I ap- 
peal to any white man to say if he ever entered 
Logan's cabin and he gave him not meat, etc.," was 
made to John Gibson, the Secretary of State of In- 
diana Territory with Governor Harrison, and the 
second Governor. In his deposition on the subject, 
quoted in Dillon's " History of Indiana," he says 



that when Lord Dunmore, of Virginia, was approa(;h- 
ing the Shawanese towns on the Scioto in 1774, the 
chief sent out a message, requesting some one to be 
sent to them who understood their language. He 
went, and on his arrival Logan sought him out, 
where he was " talking with Cornstalk and other 
chiefs of the Shawanese, and asked him to walk out 
with him. They went into a copse of wood, where 
they sat down, and Logan, after shedding abundance 
of tears, delivered to him the speech nearly as re- 
lated by Mr. Jefierson in his ' Notes on Virginia.' " 
It may be remarked, in conclusion of this episode, 
that Logan, in consequence of the cruelty practiced 
upon him, joined Cornstalk and Red Hawk in lead- 
ing the warriors in the battle at the mouth of the 
Big Kanawha, in September, 1774, which was a 
bloodier battle to the whites, though a less decisive 
victory, than the much more celebrated battle of 
Tippecanoe. 



CHAPTER IL 



Special Features of the City of Indianapolis — Area and Present 
Condition — General View and Historical Outline. 

Special Features of the City. — The general 
contour of the surface of the city site and vicinity 
in Centre township is in no way different from that 
of the other parts of the county. It is level or 
gently undulating, except where the bluffs bordering 
the " bottoms" of streams make more abrupt eleva- 
tions, and none of these are considerable. Following 
the eastern border of the valley of Pogue's Run, 
which divides the city from northeast to southwest, 
is a ridge, or range of swells rather than hills, from 
the extreme southwest corner to near the northeast 
corner, where it leaves the present city limits, and 
these are the only " high grounds" in the city. In 
improving the streets these little elevations have been 
cut down and the hollows filled, till in hardly any street 
can be discerned any change from a level, except a 
slight slope or depression. For the past thirty years 
or so, before any considerable improvements had been 
made on the natural condition of the site, several 



SPECIAL FEATURES OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



11 



bayous, or " ravines," as they were generally called, 
traversed it through a greater or less extent, two 
being especially noticeable for volume and occasional 
mischief. They drained into the river the overflow 
of Fall Creek into a large tract of swampy ground 
northeast of the city, from which, at a very early 
period, a ditch was made by the State into Fall 
Creek at a point a mile or two farther down. The 
smaller or shorter of these ran through the eastern 
side, in a slightly southwesterly direction, crossing 
Washington Street at New Jersey, where the former, 
a part of the National road, crossed on a brick cul- 
vert, and terminating at Pogue's Creek. The other 
passed nearer the centre of the city, turning west a 
little above the State-House Square, and passing 
along the line of Missouri Street, afterwards the line 
of the Central Canal, from near Market to Mary- 
land, and thence curving southward and again west- 
ward and northward, entered the river at the site of 
the water-works, where some indications of its exist- 
ence can still be seen, and about the only place 
where there is a relic of this once prominent and 
very troublesome feature of the city's topography. 
In several low places, mainly north and east of the 
centre, there were considerable ponds, the drainage 
of heavy rainfalls, and in the south was one or two, 
but these have all been improved out of existence 
many a year. The only one of these that was 
perennial and distinguished by a name was the 
Graveyard Pond, near the old cemetery, formed by 
the retention of overflows of the river in a bayou 
following the bluff of the river bottom. The whole 
site of the city, both the original mile square and all 
the outlying " donations" and all the " additions," 
were at first densely covered with woods and weeds 
and underbrush, of which there remain only one or 
two trees in Pogue's Creek Valley in the east, and 
a few sycamores and elms near the creek mouth at 
the southwest corner. Fall Creek and Pleasant Run 
may be regarded as the northern and southern limits 
of the city now. 

Divisions. — Pogue's Creek divides the city, leaving 
one-third or more on the southeast side, the remainder 
on the northwest side. The latter contains the bulk 
of the business and population. A small tract west 



of the river was added to the site selected on the 
east to compensate for a part of one of the four sec- 
tions cut off by a bend of the river. This, called 
Indianola, forms part of one of the city wards. A 
still smaller area south of this, on the west side, has 
been added to the city, but the greater part of the 
tract west of the river and south of Oliver Avenue 
has been organized into an independent town gov- 
ernment by the name of West Indianapolis. North- 
west is another suburb, but not attached to the city, 
called Haughsville. Farther to the north is North 
Indianapolis, also independent, while northeast is 
Brightwood, unattached ; and east, nearly five miles, 
is the handsome little town of Irvington, mainly oc- 
cupied by residents whose business is in the city, and 
by the faculty and students of Butler University. 
Southeast is the little suburb of Stratford. A num- 
ber of city additions have separate names, as Oak 
Hill, Brookside, Woodlawn, Woodruff Place, but 
none, except the last, is in any way distinguishable 
from the city adjacent to it. 

The Creek. — -More pertinently here than elsewhere 
may be noticed the connection of the two streams 
that enter the city, Pogue's Creek and the river, 
with its history. The former was named for the 
traditional but disputed first settler on the city site, 
George Pogue. It rises about a mile east of the 
northeast corner of Centre township, flows south- 
westerly through almost the whole diagonal length 
of the city, and enters the river at the angle formed 
by the southern city boundary and the river. Until 
street improvements turned a large part of the town 
drainage into it the water was clear, well stocked with 
the same sort of fish as other streams, and a favorite 
swimming resort for school-boys. The bottom was 
heavily wooded, subject to frequent overflows, and 
often swampy. Gradually, as the town grew, and 
manufactures and general business followed railroad 
enterprises, the vicinity of the creek became the site 
of foundries, machine-shops, mills, and other indus- 
trial establishments, and a little later of the gas- 
works, and these, with the flow of street gutters, 
turned the clear little woods stream into an open 
sewer. Worse still, the rapid inflow of street drain- 
age, with other less artificial influences, made it sub- 



12 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



ject to violent and sudden overflows, which in the 
last twenty years have done so much mischief that 
suits have been repeatedly brought against the city 
for indemnity. Very recently a judgment for ten 
thousand dollars was obtained on one of these suits 
by a large wholesale house. The current has been 
obstructed and diverted by the piers and abutments 
of street and railway bridges, by culverts and the 
arches of the foundations of large buildings, and in 
some places " washes'" have cut away the banks so as 
to seriously impair the value of adjacent lots, and 
even to imperil houses, and the result of all these 
co-operating evils has been the recent appointment of 
a committee of the City Council and Board of Alder- 
men, in conjunction with several prominent private 
citizens, to devise a complete and uniform system of 
protection from overflows, washes, and all forms of 
damage. As it follows the line of lowest level in 
the city, draining the site from both sides, it has 
sometimes been proposed to deepen its bed, wall and 
arch it in, and make a main sewer of it. A very 
large portion of it on both banks has been walled in, 
and many hundreds of feet arched in by street cul- 
verts and other works, and it is not improbable that 
it will sooner or later be covered throughout, and 
made to carry oS the whole natural flow as well as 
the street drainage not diverted to other sewers. But 
very little of it is left in its old bed, its crooks having 
been straightened into angles and right lines. Occa- 
sionally it runs dry in long droughts. 

TJie Canal. — Although no natural feature of the 
city's topography, and a considerable portion of it is 
efiaced, the canal is still conspicuous enough both in 
its topographical and economical relations to require 
notice. The section from the feeder-dam in the river 
at Broad Ripple, some eight or nine miles north, to 
the city is all that was ever completed of the " Cen- 
tral Canal," which was one of the system of public 
improvements begun by the State in 1836. In places 
it was almost completed for twenty-five or thirty 
mUes south of the city, and nearly as far north, but 
nothing was ever done wiih it but to leave it to be 
overgrown with weeds and underbrush, except a 
short stretch three miles south, where its bed was 
very level, and the country people used it for a race- 



course. Until within ten years or so the completed 
section from Broad Ripple passed clear through the 
city, mainly along the line of Missouri Street to 
Merrill Street, and in early times was used for fishing, 
swimming, skating, ice-packing, occasional baptisms 
by churches, and semi-occasional cargoes of wood in 
flat-boats. The State sold it a few years after its 
completion to the " Central Canal Hydraulic and 
Water- Works Company," and that sold to others 
till it came into the hands of the company which 
established the water-works, and used it as a motive- 
power, some dozen years ago. Then the portion south 
of Blarket Street was deepened, and a sewer built in 
it, connecting with the Kentucky Avenue trunk 
sewer, and it was filled up, graded, and partially 
improved, and is now a street. Above Market 
Street it continues in its former condition, used 
for boating and ice-packing by permission of the 
proprietary company, and for bathing without it. 
Below the line of Merrill Street to the city limits 
the canal passed through private property, which 
has reverted to the original owners or their assigns, 
who have left hardly a visible trace of it. When 
first completed, an enlargement or basin was made 
on the site of the present steel-rail mill, and a culvert 
was made over the creek that occasionally broke and 
made trouble. The culvert is almost the only relic 
of the lower end of the city section. On each side 
of Washington Street, on the east bank of the canal, 
a square basin opening into it was made, each about 
two hundred feet square. These have long disap- 
peared, and with them a ditch along the south side 
of Washington Street, extending east to within a 
short distance of Mississippi, then turning directly 
south to Maryland Street, and there turning west 
entered the canal at the Maryland Street bridge. The 
bridges were all made with " tow-paths" beneath ' 
them on the west side. These disappeared with the 
basins and ditches. A couple of wooden locks were : 
built at the south line of the " donation," but never 
finished. They became a favorite fishing-place, as 
did the place where the water, while it lasted, emptied 
into Pleasant Run, near the river. Water never 
passed farther south. A stone lock was built at 
Market Street, and used a few times. From this 



GENPJRAL FEATURES OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



13 



lock an arm of the canal ran west two blocks or so, 
a few feet north of Market Street, where it entered 
a basin some four or five hundred feet long, extend- 
ing north into the " Military Ground." From the 
north end of this basin a " tumble" let the water 
down a dozen feet into a race-way that turned south, 
crossed Washington Street, and entered a sort of 
natural basin, formerly one of the old "ravines," 
whence the water fell by another tumble into the 
river at the site of the present water-works. The 
water was let into the canal at the feeder-dam in the 
spring or early summer of 1839, and the State im- 
mediately leased water-power to one woolen- and one 
oil mill, and to two each of grist-, saw-, cotton-, and 
paper-mills. These were located at the Market 
Street lock, on the river bank, where the race-way 
fell into the river, and at the south end of the basin 
in the Military Ground. Some years later a grist- 
mill south of the donation obtained its power from 
the canal. The water-works company now owning 
it have recently replaced the decayed aqueduct over 
Fall Creek with one of the most substantial charac- 
ter, and have at one time or another greatly im- 
proved the feeder-dam. Its present use is mainly to 
supply power to the pumping-engines of the water- 
works. 

The Kiver {the Wa-me-cn-me-ca). — From the 
upper to the lower bridge of the Belt Railroad the 
river may be considered a part of the city site, 
though but a small portion bounds the site on the 
west, and a smaller portion divides it from the In- 
dianola suburb. This section is pretty nearly three 
miles long in a straight line, and nearly four following 
the banks. Originally it was a stream of considera- 
ble volume, averaging probably four hundred feet in 
width, and, except upon a few shoal spots, too deep 
to be fordable. There was a ford a little way below 
the " Old Graveyard," near the present site of the 
Vincennes Railroad bridge, and in use till some 
dozen or fifteen years ago, when an iron bridge was 
built a few hundred feet above it. Another ford on 
the Lafayette wagon-road was a good deal used later, 
and known as " Crowder's" and " Garner's Ford." 
Another iron bridge has superseded it. In the town 
communication was kept up with the west side by a 



ferry a little below the National road bridge. Di- 
rectly west of the " Old Graveyard," and three or 
four hundred feet above the site of the present iron 
bridge, was a low sandy island, containing a couple 
or three acres, and covered with large sycamores and 
elms, called " Governor's Island." At the head of 
it, where a narrow " chute" separated it from the 
high and heavily-wooded ground of the cemetery, 
was a huge drift that was for many years a favorite 
fishing-place of the towns-people. A little above 
this, on the west side, a considerable " bayou" ran 
out, circling irregularly around an extensive tract, a 
perfect wilderness of woods and weeds, spice-bush 
and papaw, and re-entered the river a half-mile or 
so lower. A wing-dam at the upper mouth con- 
verted it into a race-way for a grist-mill erected on 
the south bank, near the present line of the Belt 
Railroad, in the year 1823. This was one of the 
first mills built in the county. A little way east of 
it, nearer the river, the first distillery in the county 
was established near the same time, turning out for 
several years a small quantity of " forty-rod" whiskey 
that was known as " Bayou Blue." Some remains 
of the mill were discernible a dozen years ago, but 
all are gone now, and the bayou itself is measura- 
bly effaced by plowing and naturally drying out. 
" Governor's Island" has entirely disappeared too. 
The river, during the freshets that have almost an- 
nually occurred ever since the first settlement was 
made, has cut away the eastern bank along the 
" Old Graveyard" line until its entire volume is now 
east of the site of the island, and that once con- 
spicuous feature is merged in the broad low sand-bar 
that fills the old bed. The channel has shifted at 
this point, as may be seen by the west bank, four 
hundred feet or more. A like change, and even 
greater, has taken place below, where the current has 
out the west bank, and filled in on the east side a 
wide swampy tract of several acres below and along 
the Graveyard Pond site, and at the foot of what 
used to be called the High Banks. Within a few 
years freshets have cut through a sharp elbow on the 
west side at this same place, and instead of whittling 
away the point piecemeal as before, the future action 
of the water seems likely to take the main volume 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



bodily some hundreds of feet inland. The same 
agencies have cut a number of small channels through 
the " bottom" a little lower, and threaten to make a 
tolerably straight course from near the old ford down 
to a point a little below the lower mouth of the old 
bayou. These are the most notable changes in the 
river-bed in or near the city. 

There has come, with the clearing of the country, 
the drainage of swamps, and disappearance of little 
springs and rivulets, the same change that has come 
upon all the streams of the country and of the world 
under the same conditions. The volume of water is 
smaller, low-water mark is lower, the freshets more 
sudden and evanescent. It happens frequently now 
that in protracted droughts the volume of water is 
reduced to that of a very moderate creek, not ex- 
ceeding fifty or sixty feet in width in very shoal 
places, and the tributary streams, Eagle and Pleasant 
Run, go dry altogether near their mouths. Fall Creek, 
however, is not known to have ever been so greatly 
reduced. Before settlement and cultivation had 
changed the face of the country so greatly the an- 
nual freshets, — sometimes semi-annual, — usually in 
the latter part of winter or spring, were used to carry 
some of the country's products to market down on 
the lower Ohio and Mississippi. This was done in 
flat-boats, measuring fifty or sixty feet long by 
twelve to fifteen wide, covered in with a sort of 
house, the roof of which was the deck, where long, 
heavy side-oars and still longer and heavier steering 
oars were managed. The current, however, was the 
motive-power. In this floating house was stored, ac- 
cording to the business or fancy of the shipper, baled 
hay, corn, wheat, or oats, whiskey, pork, poultry, 
these chiefly. They were run out at the height of 
a freshet, so as to pass over a few dams that stood in 
the way, and were the source of the greatest peril to 
these self-insured shippers. This sort of commerce 
was maintained at intervals for probably twenty 
years, but most largely from about 1835 till the 
Madison Railroad oflFered a better way out, in the 
fall of 1847. During the first few years of the 
city's existence occasional cargoes of corn and game 
were brought down the river by the Indians, and up 
the river in keel-boats by poling and " cordelling," or 



hauling along with ropes, in canal-boat faishion. Not 
much of either was ever done, however, the new 
settlement depending mainly on land transportatinn 
from the White Water and on its own products. 

The prominent event in the history of the city's 
connection with the river is the attempt to make it or 
prove it what Congress had declared it to be, a navi- 
gable stream. A full account will be given in another 
place, but it may be noted here that a survey was 
made in 1825 which maintained the practicability of 
navigation three months in the year for a distance of 
four hundred and fifteen miles at an annual expense 
of fifteen hundred dollars. A reward of two hundred 
dollars was ofi'ered to the first steamer's captain whu 
should bring his boat to the town, and in 1830 one 
came as far as Spencer, Owen Co., and another 
came up about the same distance or a little nearer, 
but in the spring of 1831 the " Robert Hanna, " 
bought for the purpose, it was said, of carrying stcjne 
from the Bluffs of the river for the piers and abut- 
ments of the National road bridge, came clear up tu 
the town, raising a great excitement and high antici- 
pations of river commerce. She remained a cou])le 
of days, ran upon a bar going back, and stuck a 
month or two, and finally got into safe water some 
time during the fall. This was the last of the navi- 
gation of White River, except by the flat-boats n- 
ferred to and a little pleasure steamer in 1865, that 
made a few trips during the year and was wrecked 
the next summer. Within the present year a little 
picnic steamer has been built at Broad Ripple, but it 
can hardly be deemed an exception to the universal 
failure of White River navigation. 

There have been a few freshets in the river so high 
and disastrous that they deserve special notice. The 
first was in 1828, following an unusually wet spring. 
During that rise an old hunter paddled his canoe 
through the fork of a large tree on Governor's Island, 
a height of overflow that has probably never been 
equaled since. The " bottom" lands for many miles 
were seriously damaged, fences washed away, stock 
drowned, crops in store injured, though, as suggested 
by Mr. Ignatius Brown, less damage was done than 
by smaller floods following when the country was 
better settled. The Legislature made some relief 



GENERAL FEATURES OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



15 



provision for the sufferers by remitting taxes. The 
next great flood was early in January, 1847. The 
water then for a time threatened the National road 
bridge. It broke through the little suburb of In- 
dianola, or " Stringtown" as it was then called, from 
its being strung out along the National road, and cut 
two deep gullies through the solidly-graded and 
heavily-macadamized pike, churning out on the south 
side in the soft, loose soil of the river bottom huge 
holes nearly a hundred feet in diameter and twenty or 
more deep. Several houses were washed away, and 
one was left on the slope of one of the big holes, 
where it remained tilted over and apparently ready 
to fall for several months. The third big flood was 
in 1858. In 1875 came two nearly equal to that of 
1847, the first in May, the next in August, both 
reaching about the same height. But for the levees 
then built along the west bank for a mile and more 
the whole of the country west of the river to the bluff 
of the " bottom" would have been drowned. In the 
early part of February of this year (1883) the 
highest flood ever known, except possibly that of 
1847 and that of 1828, occurred, filled a large num- 
ber of houses in Indianola, driving out the occupants 
and damaging walls and furniture, and sweeping clear 
over the National road for the first time since 1847. 
It was more than a foot higher than either flood of 
1875. Levees now protect the west side — the only one 
endangered by floods to any extent within the limits of 
costly improvements — for nearly three miles south of 
the Vaudalia Railroad to a point opposite the mouth 
of Pleasant Run. These will be extended in time 
parallel with the levees on the east side below Pleasant 
Run. These are the chief levees on the river. Some 
small ones have been made along the south bank of 
Fall Creek at the northern limit of the city site. 

Until 1852 the only bridge over White River in or 
near the town was that built by the national govern- 
ment for the great national highway, the " Cumber- 
land road." This was finished in 1833, and is still 
in constant use, considerably dilapidated through cul- 
pable neglect, but still solid in its arches and service- 
able. In 1852 the Vandalia Railroad Company put 
up a bridge for their line a quarter of a mile south of 
the old one. Since then there have been built for 



railroad or ordinary service no less than nine bridges, 
all of iron or mixed iron and timber. They are, be- 
ginning at the north, the Lafayette or Crawfordsville 
road wagon-bridge, the Upper Belt road bridge, the 
Michigan Street and Washington Street wagon- 
bridges, the old National road bridge, the St. Louis 
Railroad bridge, the Vandalia Railroad bridge, the 
Old Cemetery wagon-bridge, the Vinoennes Railroad 
bridge, the Morris Street wagon-bridge, the Lower 
Belt road bridge, — eleven in all. The bridges on 
the smaller streams and the remainder of the canal 
are too numerous to be worth special notice. 

Turnpikes. — All the wagon-roads out of the city 
are now graveled, and little inferior to macadamized 
roads. For a few years, some thirty years or so ago, 
a sort of mania for. plank-roads ran over the State, 
and the western division of the National road was 
planked. It had then been given to the State by the 
general government (as had all the remainder of the 
road to the States through which it passed), and by 
the State had been assigned to a plank-road company, 
which made this improvement. It was a failure after 
the first few mouths. The planks warped, the ends 
turned up, and the covering soon became a nuisance, 
and was abandoned for coarse gravel, which packs 
solidly and makes a fairly smooth, durable, and dry 
road. Many of the county and neighborhood roads 
have been improved in the same way. Most of these 
improved roads are held by companies and are main- 
tained by tolls, which in the case of the city roads 
prove to be a handsome return upon the investment. 
Some of them have been sold to the county and made 
free, but several are still held by the companies. The 
principal roads leading out of the city are the east and 
west divisions of the National road ; northeast, the 
Pendleton road ; southeast, the south division of the 
Michigan road and the Old Shelbyville road ; south, 
the Madison road, the "Three Notch" road, the Bluff 
road ; southwest, the Mooresville road ; northwest, 
the Crawfordsville and Lafayette road and the north 
division of the Michigan road ; north, the Westfield 
and the Old Noblesville road. 

Area and Present Condition. — The original city 
plat was a square mile, laid off in the centre of four 
square miles donated by Congress in 1816 for a site 



16 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



for the State capital. The half-mile border around 
this square was made " out-lots," and used as farm 
lands for years, but after 1847 was rapidly absorbed 
into the city, until at the commencement of the civil 
war the entire " donation" was included in the city, 
and was more or less compactly built over. The town 
government was extended over the whole four sections 
in 1838, but it was ten years later, following the 
completion of the first railway, before any consider- 
able occupancy of this tract was attempted, and then 
it was mainly in the vicinity of the new railway depot. 
Many additions of greater or less extent have been 
made, more than doubling the area of the original 
four sections of the "donation." It is estimated now 
(1883) that an area of about eleven square miles (or 
seven thousand acres) is included in the limits of the 
city. It occupies a little more than one-fourth of the 
area of Centre township, which is a little larger than 
a Congressional township of six miles square. 

Population. — The first estimate of population rests 
upon an enumeration made by visitors of the Union 
Sunday-school in the spring of 1824, when 100 
families were counted upon the "donation," making 
a probable population of 500 or more, represented by 
100 voters, or 120 possibly, with 50 voters repre- 
senting nobody but themselves, or a total population 
of near 600. In 1827 a careful census was taken, 
and the population found to count up 1066. In 
1830 it was about 1500; in 1840,4000; in 1850, 
8034; in 1860, 18,611; in 1870, 48,244; in 1880, 
75,056. It is now estimated at about 95,000, of 
which one-sixth is foreign-born, mainly Irish and 
Germans, the former counting a little more than 
half of the latter, or, with all other foreign-born 
population, making a little more than half of all 
of that class. In 1880 the whole of German birth 
was 6070 : of Irish birth, 3660 ; and of all other 
foreign nationalities, 2880. The proportions are 
now about 8000, 4000, and 3000. The basis of the 
estimate of population that gives the closest as well 
as the most trustworthy result is that of the enu- 
meration of school children under the law. This is 
made every year to determine the ratio of distribu- 
tion of the State's school fund, and is probably as 
accurate as the national census. It shows the pro- 



portion of children of " school age" (from six to 
twenty-one) in 1880 to have been to the whole popu- 
lation as one to two and four-fifths. The school 
enumeration for 1883 makes the total 33,079, which 
gives at the ascertained ratio a population a little 
less than 93,000. The estimate of the secretary of 
the Board of Trade is 100,000, but no safe basis of 
calculation will give that result. A fair estimate on 
the 1st of January, 1884, makes the population 
95,000. 

Governinenf. — The city government is composed 
of a mayor. Board of Aldermen, Common Council, 
clerk, treasurer, and assessor, elected by popular 
vote ; marshal, chief of the fire department, attorney, 
elected by the Council ; and a Board of Police Com- 
missioners, appointed by the State officers and paid 
by the city, who have entire control of the police 
force, also paid by the city. The officers elected by 
the people serve two years, the others one. The 
police commissioners go out and are replaced in suc- 
cessive years, one in one, one in two, and one in 
three. 

Police. — The police force consists of a chief, two 
captains, and sixty-five men. Besides the regular 
force there are three or four specially in charge of 
the Union Depot, authorized by the city but paid 
by the Union Railway Company. The merchants' 
police, a small force of men, is appointed by the city, 
but paid by the citizens whose property is specially 
in their care. 

The Fire Department consists of a chief and 
his assistants, and a working force, held in this 
service exclusively, of seventy-seven men, including 
the officers named. It has six steam-engines, four 
hose-reels, two hookand-ladder wagons, uses six 
hundred and twenty-two hydrants, one hundred and 
forty-nine cisterns, ranging in capacity from one 
thousand to two thousand five hundred barrels, and 
one hundred and thirty electric signal-boxes or alarm 
stations. 

Streets. — There are four hundred and fifty streets, 
and larger alleys used as streets, all more or less 
improved by grading and graveling or bowldering. 
A very few are paved with wooden blocks, and 
one of these has within a year been torn up and 



AREA AND PRESENT CONDITION OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



17 



replaced by bowlders. A large number of streets 
are bowldered, but much the larger portion are 
graded and covered heavily with coarse gravel, 
which is found to make a good durable street, given 
to grind into dust and mud, but always available and 
cheap. The aggregate length of streets is not accu- 
rately known, but as a few are four miles long or 
more, and a great many from one to two miles, the 
aggregate length is conjectured to be probably be- 
tween seven hundred and eight hundred miles. On 
them is a total length of water-main of fifty-one 
miles, with twenty-five large iron drinking-fountains 
" for man and beast." With these are ninety miles 
of gas-mains and two thousand four hundred and 
seventy-nine lamps. There are thirteen lines of 
street railways, owning five hundred mules and em- 
ploying one hundred drivers. All belong to one 
company. 

Parks. — A very pleasing feature of the city is its 
parks, of which there are four: 1st, Circle Park, in- 
teDded to have been put in the centre of the " dona- 
tion," as the site of the Governor's official residence, 
but never used for that purpose, and, on account of 
the propinquity of Pogue's Run bottom, put a little 
aside from the central point, which is a half-square 
south of the southeast corner of Washington and 
Illinois Streets ; 2d, Military Park, the remains of a 
military reservation ; 3d, University Park, held by 
the city on consent of the Legislature, but given 
originally to help endow a State University at the 
capital; 4th, Garfield Park, originally Southern Park, 
a large tract at the extreme south of the city, pur- 
chased some years ago to give the population of that 
part of the city a place of recreation, but so far in- 
adequately improved. 

Taxes. — The levy for general purposes last year 
was 90 cents on $100, for school purposes 22 cents, 
making a total of $1.12, the legal limit of taxation 
for city purposes. This rate is levied on a total 
valuation of $52,633,510, divided into "realty," 
$22,863,525; "improvements," $16,363,200; "per- 
sonal," $13,406,755. There are .some slight discrep- 
ancies in these statements, as the assessors' returns 
had not been corrected when this report was given. 
The total valuation of property for taxation in 1850 



was $2,326,185 ; in 1860, $10,700,000 ; in 1866, the 
first valuation after the close of the war, $24,835,750 ; 
in 1870, $24,656,460. A decline in real estate came 
in 1868, the valuation dropping from $25,500,000 in 
1867 to $24,000,000 in 1868, and to $22,000,000 
in 1869, recovering partially in 1870, and rising to 
$30,000,000 in 1871. The rise continued till 1874, 
then the financial crash of 1873 began to operate, 
and a second decline began, which is now about 
overcome. The city revenue for the last year was 
$591,312. 

Business. — The secretary of the Board of Trade 
reports for the year ending with the end of 1882 
that there were 772 manufacturing establishments in 
the city, with $12,270,000 of capital, employing an 
average of 12,000 hands at an average rate of $2.20 
a day, using $18,730,000 of material, and producing 
$30,100,000 of merchantable goods. The wholesale 
trade in sixteen lines of business amounted to $25,- 
[ 440,000. The total clearances of the clearing-house 
I was $101,577,523. There are 12 banks in the city, 
I 6 national and 6 private, with a total capital of 
$2,880,000. The average of monthly deposits was 
$11,435,000. Total receipts of grain for 1882, 21,. 
j 242,897 bushels; of coal, about 400,000 tons, or 
i 202,711 for the last six months. Of live-stock, 
j 5,319,611 hogs, 640,363 cattle, 849,936 sheep, 50,- 
795 horses, of which there was disposed of in the 
city 3,020,913 hogs, 106,178 cattle, 70,543 sheep, 
2533 horses. Of lumber, 125,000 M's, or 125,- 
000,000 feet. The Board of Trade has 1000 mem- 
bers. 

Railroads. — Counting the two divisions of the 
JefFersonville Railroad separately, as they were built 
and operated at first, there are fourteen railroads com- 
pleted and in operation centring in Indianapolis, 
running altogether 114 passenger trains both ways 
daily, and handling here an average of 2500 freight 
cars daily, each car having a capacity of twelve tons 
at least, and making a total daily tonnage of 30,000 
tons, equal to the trade of a seaport receiving and 
sending out thirty vessels daily of 1 000 tons each. 
Besides the fourteen lines of railroad centring in 
the city, there is the Union Railway Company with 
a length of track enough to connect them all at 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



the Union Passenger Depot, and now by lease in 
control of the Belt Railway, which very nearly en- 
circles the city, and connects all the roads for freight 
purposes by a line that enables transfers of cars and 
trains to be made outside of the city, avoiding the 
obstruction of many streets. Two new roads are in 
progress. Every county in the State but three can 
be reached by rail, and nearly every county-seat can 
be visited and a return made the same day. 

Newspapers and Periodicals. — There are six 
daily newspapers in the city, all morning issues ex- 
cept one. There is one semi-weekly, twenty-five 
weeklies (including the weekly editions of dailies), 
one semi-monthly, and seventeen monthlies. 

Amusements. — There are four theatres, one hun- 
dred and sixty public halls, four military companies, 
four musical societies, and three brass bands ; ten 
libraries, including the State and City and County, 
and the State Geological Museum, containing over 
100,000 specimens, and valued at over $100,000. 

Business Associations. — Insurance fifteen ; for man- 
ufactures and other purposes incorporated, sixty-one, 
with a capital of $8,300,000 ; building and loan socie- 
ties nineteen, with an aggregate capital of $1,755,000 ; 
miscellaneous associations, fifty-five ; hotels, forty. 

Professions. — Lawyers, two hundred ; physicians, 
two hundred and thirty-two. (School-teachers and 
preachers, see Schools and Churches.) 

Secret Societies. — The secret societies number 23, 
with 143 lodges or separate organizations. The Ma- 
sons have 21 lodges of whites and 6 of colored mem- 
bers ; the Odd-Fellows have 23 in all ; the Knights 
of Pythias have 13 ; the Hibernians have 3. Be- 
sides these the Red Men, and Elks, and Druids, and 
several other orders have each one or more lodges. 

Churches. — Baptist, 13 ; Catholic, 7 ; Christian, 
6 ; Congregational, 2 ; Episcopal, 5 ; Reformed Epis- 
copal, 1 ; Evangelical Alliance, 1 ; United Brethren, 
1 ; Friends, 1 ; German Reformed, 3 ; Hebrews, 2 ; 
Lutheran, 6 ; Methodist, 23 ; Protestant Methodist, 
1; Presbyterian, 14; Swedenborgian, 1; United 
Presbyterian, 1. In all there are 88 churches in the 
city. Two denominations that at one time were quite 
prominent, the Universalist and Unitarian, have disap- 
peared altogether in the last few years as distinct sects. 



Health and Sanitary Conditions. — The station 
at Indianapolis of the United States Signal Service 
reports for the last year an annual mean of tempei:i- 
ture of 53.8 ; an annual mean of humidity of 71.1 ; 
107 clear days, 141 fair days-, and 117 cloudy days ; 
a mean fill of rain and snow of 53.68 inches ; the 
highest temperature 94°, the lowest 10° below zero. 
Drainage is efiected by an incomplete but steadily 
advancing system of sewage, with two trunk lines at 
present on Washington and South Streets, and a 
number of small tributary sewers. The health of 
the city is surpassed by no city and not many rural 
regions in the world. The last report of the Board of 
Health covers seven months from January to July, 
inclusive, 1883, and shows, with the months of the 
preceding year back to July, an average of less than 
140 a month. This gives a death-rate of 18s in 
1000 ; that of London i.s 21 1 per 1000, of Paris 26], 
of Vienna 29, of New York 29f . Very few rural 
communities in Europe or this country show a death- 
rate lower than 19 in 1000. 

Schools. — The free school system went into opera- 
tion in 1853, when the accumulation of public funds 
had allowed the previous purchase of grounds and 
the erection of houses sufficient for the town's needs, 
a popular vote six years before having authorized a 
special city tax for school purposes. The average at- 
tendance at the outset in April, 1853, was 340'. In 
three years it was 1400. It is now (1883) 9938, 
while 13,685 children are enrolled on the school rec- 
ords, and the city contains a juvenile population of 
school age (from six to twenty-one) of 33,079. The 
enrollment is considerably less than half of the popu- 
lation, while the attendance is about one-third. This 
is a reduction of three per cent, in two years. There 
are now belonging to the public school system 29 brick 
houses and 2 frame. Of these 2 are one story, 25 
are two stories, 3 of three stories ; 8 have four rooms 
or less, 11 have eight rooms, 12 have nine rooms. 
In all there are 245 rooms, with a seating capacity of 
12,746, nearly equal to the entire enrollment. Value 
of grounds and buildings, $938,419.30. There are 
19 male teachers, 234 female teachers ; 21 are col- 
ored, 232 white. Salaries in the High School, 
I maximum $2000, minimum $700, average $1037 ; 



GENERAL VIEW AND HISTORICAL OUTLINE. 



19 



in Primary schools, maximum $1100, minimum 
$650, average $900.92 ; grade teachers, maximum 
$650, minimum $300, average $500. 

Private schools are nearly as numerous as public 
schools, but, of course, less largely attended. There are 
twenty-six of these, some of them of a denominational 
character, some wholly secular, but most of a higher 
grade than the primaries of the public system. A 
few will rank with the preparatory schools of the 
best colleges. Besides there are five kindergartens. 
Of the collegiate class of educational institutions, 
there are four medical schools authorized to give 
diplomas and degrees, one law school of the same 
grade, and, more considerable than these, Butler Uni- 
versity, now at Irvington, formerly the Northwestern 
Christian University, and located in the northeastern 
part of the city. 

Under the same management as the public schools 
is the Public Library, supported by a tax of two cents 
on one hundred dollars, and containing about forty 
thousand volumes. 

General View and Historical Outline. — A sum- 
mary of the history of the city and of its dififerent 
stages of growth, with a glance at its present condi- 
tion, will give the reader a more definite and durable 
impression of such points as he may desire to retain 
for his own purposes or for the information of others, 
than he could obtain from the best methodized and 
most complete system of details unaccompanied by 
such an outline. This "general view" will, there- 
fore, present the epochs in the progress of Indianap- 
olis, and leave the details of development in each to 
the chapters treating the different departments which 
make up the body of its history. 

The first settlement of Marion County may be 
safely dated in the spring of 1820, though there is a 
probability of the arrival of one settler a year earlier, 
and contemporaneously with the Whetzel (relatives 
of the noted Indian-fighter of West Virginia, Lewis 
Whetzel) settlement at the bluffs of White River, 
or, as the Indians called it, Wah-me-ca-me-ca. In 
the fall of 1818 the Delaware tribes by treaty ceded 
to the United States the region now known as Cen- 
tral Indiana, with a reservation of possession till 
1821. Little more regard was paid to Indian rights 



then than since, and settlers began, with leave or 
without it, to take up lands in the " New Purchase," 
as it was called, within six months after the bargain 
was made. By midsummer, 1820, there was a little 
village collected along and near the east bank of 
White River, and on the 7th of June the commis- 
sioners of the State Legislature selected it as the site 
of the future capital. Congress had given the State, 
on its admission into the Union in 1816, four sec- 
tions, or two miles square, for a capital site, on any 
of the unsold lands of the government, and at the 
junction of Fall Creek and White River the location 
was fixed. The town was laid out in the summer of 

1821, one mile square, with the remainder of the 
four sections divided round it into " out-lots." The 
first sale of lots was held in the fall of that year, the 
proceeds to go to the erection of such buildings as 
the State should require at its capital. Here begins 
the first stage of the city's existence. 

First Period. — From the first undisputed settle- 
ment in the spring of 1820 to the removal of the 
State offices from Corydon in the fall of 1824, and 
the first meeting of the Legislature the following 
winter, a period of nearly five years, Indianapolis was 
a pioneer village, scattered about in the dense woods, 
grievously troubled with chills and fever, and little 
more encouraged for the future than any other little 
county town. The first newspaper was started in 

1822, the next in 1823 ; the first Sunday-school in 
1823; the first church was built in 1824; the post- 
oifice opened in March, 1822. 

Second Period. — From the arrival of the capital, 
in a four-horse wagon and ten days from the Ohio, 
to the completion of the first railway in October, 
1847, an interval of nearly twenty-three years, the 
town was passing through its second stage. It grew 
from a village to a respectable town, with several par- 
tially developed germs of industrie.s, which have since 
become second to very few in the Union, and with a 
mayor and Council and the name and airs of a city. 
For the first eleven years of this period the State 
Legislature met in the county court-house. In 1832 
came the first town government by " trustees," 
changed to " couneilmen" in 1888, and to " mayor 
and Council" in 1847. In 1835 the old State- 



20 



HISTORY OP INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



House was completed, and the first fire-engine bought. 
In 1834 the first bank (the old State Bank) was 
chartered. In 1832 the first manufacturing enter- 
prise was put in operation, and failed in a year or 
two more. The fir.st brewery, tobacco-factory, linseed- 
oil mill, paper-mill, merchant flour-mill, woolen-mill, 
soap-factory, the first pork-packing, all date from 
about 1835 to 1840. An iron foundry was at- 
tempted in 1832, but failed very soon. In 1842 
the first steps were taken to establish the Asylum for 
the Insane. In 1843 the first tax was levied to pre- 
pare for the Asylum for the Deaf and Dumb. In 
1845 a similar levy was made to establish the Asylum 
for the Blind. These are all located in or near the 
city. This was a period of planting rather than 
growth. The failure of the " Internal Improve- 
ment" system in 1839 left the town with a few 
miles of useless canal. The river was never naviga- 
ble except for flat-boats in spring freshets. But one 
steamer ever reached the town, and it did not get 
back for six months. There were no means of trans- 
portation, natural or artificial, but dirt-roads " cross- 
layed" or " corduroyed," and covered four-horse 
wagons hauling from Cincinnati at a dollar a hun- 
dred. All this restriction of business and inter- 
course changed a good deal with the completion of 
the old Madison Railroad, which had formed part of 
the State's system of improvements, and been sold to 
a company when the State failed. Within a half- 
dozen years came a half-dozen more railroads, and 
the city entered what may be called its " third 
period," though, except in its greater rate of progress, 
there is little to distinguish it from that which fol- 
lowed it and covers the city's history to the present 
time. 

Third Period. — From the completion of the first 
railroad, Oct. 1, 1847, to the breaking out of the 
civil war in April, 18t)l, a period of thirteen years 
and a half, there was a decided quickening of the 
city's energy and development. To it belongs the 
establishment of the free school system in 1853, and 
the permanent establishment of all the present lead- 
ing industries in iron, lumber, grain, and pork. 
There were the seeds and some wholesome sprouts of 
all these before, but with the opening of railroad 



transportation came an impulse that made almost a 
new creation. The Jefi'ersonville Railroad, the Belle- 
fontaine (Bee Line), the Vandalia, and the Lafayttte 
were all completed in 1852, and portions of all were 
in operation a year or two earlier. The Central (Pan 
Handle) was completed in 1853, the Peru in 1854, 
the Cincinnati (now with Lafayette making Cin- 
cinnati, Indianapolis, St. Louis and Chicago) in 
1853, the Union tracks and depot in 1853. With 
the concentration of the State's troops here dur- 
ing the war, and the business of all kinds requireil 
for their care, equipment, and transportation, came 
a sudden force of growth which compelled business 
to betake itself to several convenient streets, when 
previously it had been confined mainly to Wasli- 
ington Street and the vicinity of the Union 
Depot. Population more than doubled during this 
period, from eight thousand in 1850 to eighteen 
thousand in 1860, but it nearly tripled from 1860 to 
1870. The civil war and the changes it forced or 
aided may, therefore, properly mark an epoch in the 
city's history and begin the " fourth period." 

Fourth Period. — From 1861 to 1883, twenty-two 
years, population increased from forty-eight thousand 
to about ninety-five thousand, and the amount of busi- 
ness increased in a still larger proportion. The Junc- 
tion, the Vincennes, the Bloomington and Western, 
the St. Louis, the Springfield and Decatur, the Chi- 
cago Air Line, and the Belt Railroads have all been 
built in this period, and two others projected. Other 
results are better exhibited in a condensed state- 
ment of the present condition of the city, produced 
by the changes and advances in the sixty-three years 
covered by these four periods. One form of these 
combined results may be stated in the favorite boast 
of the citizens, that " Indianapolis is the largest 
wholly inland city in the United States." It has not 
and never has had any navigable water nearer than 
the Ohio and the lower Wabash, except, as already 
remarked, that freshets in the river occasionally let a 
few flat-boats, loaded with grain, or whiskey, or pork, 
or poultry, or hay, down into the Mississippi to the 
towns in the cotton and sugar region. But these 
opportunities were uncertain, and the voyages were 
uncertain when opportunities were used, so that flat- 



EARLY SETTLEMENTS. 



21 



boating never contributed sensibly to the growth of 
Indianapolis. 



CHAPTER III. 

First Period — Early Settlements — Organization of Marion 
County and Erection of Townships — Erection of Public 
Buildings — Notable Events and Incidents of the Early Set- 
tlement and of Later Years — Opening of Roads — Original 
Entries of Lands in the County. 

Although the treaty of 1818 expressly conceded 
the occupancy of the " New Purchase," as it was called 
by the whites, to the Indians till 1821, its profusion of 
game, its fertility, its abundance of excellent building 
timber began to allure settlers from the White Water 
Valley before a year had passed, and from the Ohio 
River before the reservation had expired. It will 
give the reader a suggestion of the natural attractions 
of the country to suggest that Mr. William H. Jones, 
a leading dealer in lumber in the city, aided when a 
boy, in 1824, in catching young fawns iu the vicinity 
of the present site of the Vandalia Railroad depot 
and of the corner of West and Merrill Streets ; that 
Robert Harding, one of the earliest settlers, killed a 
deer on the area called the " donation" for the first 
Fourth of July celebration and barbecue in 1822 ; 
that as late as 1845 or later wild turkeys in their 
migrations made a roost in a large sugar grove tliat 
covered the portion of the present city site about 
Meridian, Illinois, and Tennessee Streets above the 
crossing of St. Clair or thereabouts. As late as 1845 
a turkey scared from this roost by hunters ran into 
the city and into the basement of what was called the 
" Governor's House," in Circle Park, and was caught 
there. Lost quail were frequently heard piping in the 
back yards of residences. In 1822 saddles of veni- 
Bon sold at twenty-five to fifty cents, wild turkeys at 
ten to twelve and a half, a bushel of wild pigeons for 
fwenty-five cents. An early sketch of the condition 
of the country says, " A traveler who ascended the 
river a few years prior to the settlement saw the banks 
frequently dotted with wigwams and the stream en- 
livened by Indian canoes. At night parties for ' fire- 
hunting' or ' fire-fishing' were frequent among the 



Indians, and occasionally formed by thoii- white suc- 
cessors." 

The first settlers drawn to the New Purchase were 
Jacob Whetzel and his son Cyrus. The former was 
the brother, the latter the nephew of the noted scout 
and Indian-fighter, Lewis Whetzel, or Wetzel, dis- 
tinguished in the bloody annals of West Virginia and 
Pennsylvania. " The elder Whetzel," says Mr. Now- 
land, in his " Promment Citizens," " soon after the 
conclusion of the St. Mary's treaty went to Ander- 
son, bead chief of the Delawares, who lived in the 
large Delaware town named for the chief and retain- 
ing the name still, and from him obtained pormi.ssion 
to ' blaze a trace' from the White Water in Franklin 
County to the Blufi's of White River.' It may be as 
well to explain for the benefit of later settlers that 
" blazing" was cutting away a large strip of bark and 
wood from a tree-trunk on the side next to the pro- 
posed " trace" or road. Such a mark would remain 
conspicuous for many months in an interminable 
forest without a sign of human presence except that, 
and a series of them close together along the line of 
a proposed road would be a sure and easy guide to 
backwoodsmen or any traveler with sense enough to 
be trusted alone. The two Whetzels came to the 
BluiFs in the spring of 1819, before the government 
surveys were completed or commenced in some cases. 
Their settlement was a little below the present south 
boundary of the county. 

" The first white residents of the county," Mr. Dun- 
can (before referred to) says, " were Judge Fabius 
M. Finch, his father and family, who came to the site 
of Noblesville or near it in. the spring of 1819, ' that 
region being then a part of the county, but separated 
in a few years. In the fidl of 1818 one Dr. Douglass 
came up the river from below to the Blufi's, and re- 
mained there a short time, and in January, 1819, 
James Paxton came down the river from the upper 
waters to the site of the city, and came again a year 
later in 1820. The first settler in the present area of 
the county will probably remain an unsettled ques- 
tion for all time, as it was a disputed point in 1822, 
has been ever since, and is more peremptorily disputed 
now than ever. The prevailing tradition is that 
George Pogue, a blacksmith from the White Water 



22 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



settlements, came here March 2, 1819, building a 
double log cabin on the line of Michigan Street a little 
way east of the creek, on the high ground bordering 
the creek bottom, and lived there with his family, 
the solitary occupants of Marion County within its 
present limits, till the 27th of the following February, 
when John and James McCormick arrived with their 
families and built cabins on the river bank near the 
old National road bridge. The priority of settlement 
lies between these families and Mr. Pogue's. Within 
a few months past one William H. White, of Han- 
cock County, claims that he was born on the city site 
Oct. 4, 1819, near where Odd-Fellows' Hall now 
stands, on the corner of Washington and Pennsyl- 
vania Streets. Old settlers as early as 1820-21 
have no recollection of any account of such an occur- 
rence, and births were too rare in those days to allow 
the first one in the county or any suggestion of it, 
however vague or doubtful, to be forgotten. The im- 
pression seems to be that Mr. White has been misled 
by some accidental confusion or by the failing 
memory of his relatives. He may be right, but he 
is distrusted by settlers who arrived here within a 
year of the alleged occurrence, and discredited by 
the opportunities of knowing the truth of many who 
arrived within two years and repel his claim. 

In the summer of 1822, a little more than a year 
after Pogue's death. Dr. Samuel G. Mitchell, the old- 
est physician in the place, published in the Gazette, 
the first paper in the place, a discussion of the pre- 
tensions of Pogue to the honor of being the first 
settler, in which he maintained that the McCormicks 
were the first, and that Pogue came a month later, 
about the time. the Maxwells and Cowan came. No 
reply was made to this direct attack on the general 
opinion of the settlers, which certainly suggests a 
reasonable probability that its statement was indis- 
putable, and that the tradition of a general concur- 
rence in awarding Pogue the credit is ill-founded. 
But there comes in here the countervailing considera- 
tion that the pioneers of the backwoods were little 
given to glorifying the pen or looking to the papers 
for instruction. Nobody may have been disposed to 
take the trouble to contradict what he knew nobody 
but Mitchell believed, or he may, very fixirly, have 



concluded that in a little two-year-old village in the 
woods it would be less trouble to contradict the story 
" by word of mouth" to every man in the place than 
to attempt so unusual a feat as writing for the papers. 
But this early and public contest of Pogue's claim by 
an intelligent man, at a time when there could hardly 
have been an adult, male or female, who did not know 
the truth, creates a strong doubt against the current 
of tradition. The probability inclines to Mrs. Pogue's 
statement at an " Old Settlers' " meeting in 1854, as 
Mr. Robert B. Duncan remembers it. She was more 
than fourscore years old then, but her memory of 
early events seemed clear and accurate. She said 
that her husband and family came here on the 2d of 
March, 1820, and the McCormicks came on the 7th 
of the same month. This seems to be final as to the 
first settlement being made in 1820 instead of 1819, 
as has generally been believed, whether it settles the 
question of individual pi'iority or not. Where two or 
three families arrive at a place in a primeval forest 
within four or five days of each other, and a mile or 
two apart, it is easy to see how each set of the sepa- 
rated settlers may suppose itself the first. Virtually 
they are simultaneous arrivals, and the truth, or at 
least the probability, of history compromises this 
long-mooted question by concluding that the Pogues 
and McCormicks were all first settlers. 

Whether Pogue was the first man to live here or 
not, he was certainly the first to die here. Mr. Now- 
land's description of the man and account of his death 
so strikingly exhibit some of the characteristics of the 
time and country that it is reproduced here. " George 
Pogue was a large, broad-shouldered, and stout man, 
with dark hair, eyes, and complexion, about fifty years 
of age, and a native of North Carolina. His dress 
was like that of a Pennsylvania Dutchman, a drab 
overcoat with many capes, and a broad-brimmed felt 
hat. He was a blacksmith, and the first of that trade 
to enter the ' New Purchase.' To look at the man as 
we saw him last, one would think he was not afraid to 
meet a whole camp of Delawares in battle array, which 
fearlessness, in fact, was most probably the cause of 
his death. One evening about twilight a straggling 
Indian, known to the settlers as well as to the In- 
dians as Wyandotte John, stopped at the cabin of Mr. 



EARLY SETTLEMENTS. 



23 



Pogue and asked to stay all night. Mr. Pogue did 
not like to keep him, but thought it best not to refuse, 
as the Indian was known to be a bad and very des- 
perate man, having left his own tribe in Ohio for some 
oflFense, and was now wandering among the various 
Indiana tribes. His principal lodging-place the pre- 
vious winter was a hollow sycamore log that lay under 
the bluff and just above the east end of the National 
road bridge over White River. (Above the site of 
the bridge, Mr. Nowland means, as the bridge was not 
buUt for more than ten years after.) On the upper 
side of the log he had hooks, made by cutting the 
forks or limbs of bushes, on which he rested his gun. 
At the open end of the log next to the water he 
built his fire, which rendered his domicile as comfort- 
able as most of the cabins. After John was furnished 
with something to eat, Mr. Pogue, knowing him to be 
traveling from one Indian camp to another, inquired 
if he had seen any white man's horses at any of the 
camps. John said ho had left a camp of Delawares 
that morning, describing the place to be on Buck 
Creek, about twelve miles east, and near where the 
Rushville State road crosses that creek ; that he had 
seen horses there with iron hoofs (they had been 
shod), and described the horses so minutely as to lead 
Mr. Pogue to believe they were his. Although the 
horses were described so accurately, Mr. Pogue was 
afraid that it was a deception to lure him into the 
woods, and mentioned his suspicions to his family. 
When the Indian left the next morning he took a 
direction towards the river, where nearly all the set- 
tlement was. Pogue followed him for some distance 
to see whether he would turn his course towards the 
Indian camps, but found that he kept directly on 
towards the river. Mr. Pogue returned to his cabin 
and told his family he was going to the Indian camp 
for his horses. He took his gun, and with his dog 
set out on foot for the Delaware camp, and was never 
afterwards seen or heard of. We remember that there 
were a great many conflicting stories about his clothes 
and horses being seen in possession of the Indians, 
all of which were untrue. There can be no doubt 
that the Wyandotte told Mr. Pogue the truth in 
regard to the horses, and in his endeavor to get pos- 
session of them had a difficulty with the Delawares 



and was killed, at least that was the prevailing opinion 
at the time. Nothing has ever been learned of his 
fate to this day, further than that he was never seen 
or heard of again, though the settlers formed a com- 
pany to search all the Indian camps about within fifty 
miles to find some indication that might lead to a 
clearing up of the mystery." Pogue's Creek, once 
the pride and now the pest of the city, takes its name 
from the proto-martyr, if not proto-settler, of the city 
and county. 

Within a week or two after the arrival of the Mc- 
Cormicks, John Maxwell and John Cowan came and 
built on the high ground near the present crossing of 
the Crawfordsville road over Fall Creek, very near the 
site of the City Hospital. During the following 
three months a number of new-comers arrived, and 
settled principally in the vicinity of the river. Those 
best remembered are the Davis brothers ( Henry and 
Samuel), Isaac Wilson (who built the first cabin on 
what was afterwards the old town plat in May), Robert 
Harding, Mr. Barnhill, Mr. Corbaley, Mr. "Van Blari- 
cum. About the time of the arrival of the last of this 
first group of pioneers the State capital was located here 
by the commissioners appointed by the Legislature 
for that purpose. 

When the State was admitted into the Union, 
April 19, 1816, a donation of four sections — four 
square miles — was made by Congress for the site of 
a capital, to be located wherever the State might 
choose upon unsold lands of the government. No 
selection had been made or attempted in the four 
years since the State's admission. The capital, which 
had been kept at Vincennes by Governor Harrison 
during his administration as Territorial Governor, 
from 1801 to 1812, was removed to Corydon, Harri- 
son Co., by the Legislature, May 1, 1813, and re- 
mained there till its permanent settlement here in 
the fall of 1824. On the llth of January, 1820, 
the Legislature appointed ten commissioners to make 
selection of a site for a permanent capital. They 
were John Tipton (an old ludian trader), John Con- 
ner (brother of William above referred to, and like 
him reared from childhood among the Indians, the 
founder of Connersville), George Hunt, John Gilli- 
land, Stephen Ludlow, Joseph Bartholomew, Jesse 



24 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



B. Durham, Frederick Rapp, William Prince, Thomas 
Emerson. They were ordered to meet at Conner's 
place (north of the city) early in the spring. Appar- 
ently only half of them served, as only five votes 
were given in determining the selection. But Mr. 
Nowland says there were nine when the party got to 
Conner's, Mr. Prince alone being unable to attend. 
If this is correct there must have been four commis- 
sioners who did not like any of the sites examined 
and declined to vote. A part of them met at Vin- 
cennes about the middle of May, 1820, and were 
joined there by the father and uncle of Mr. Nowland, 
who were on their way to Kentucky from Illinois, 
but were persuaded to accompany the commissioners. 
The party ascended the river to the Bluflfs, where 
the Whetzels had settled the year before and had 
been joined by four or five other families. After 
resting a day at this point and making an examina- 
tion of it, they came on up to the mouth of Fall 
Creek, and remained a day, some of them expressing 
themselves pleased with the country and disposed to 
put the capital here. Mr. Nowland told the commis- 
sioners that if the location were made here he would 
move out in the fall, and do all he could to induce 
other Kentuckians to join him. The mouth of Fall 
Creek had been the customary place of crossing the 
river by the whites ever since the White River Valley 
had been known to them. Mr. Nowland (the author) 
says that Lieut, (afterwards General and President) 
Taylor told him that he had crossed the river here 
with his force when going from Louisville to the Wa- 
bash to build Fort Harrison, now Terra Haute, in 
1811. While the force was here Col. Abel C. Pep- 
per, United States Marshal of the State under Taylor, 
met Tecumseh, who was on a mission to the Dela- 
wares, doubtless to induce them to join his combina- 
tion against the whites. The party went on to 
Conner's, some sixteen miles north, as before stated, 
and examined the situation there. One or two 
seemed to favor it, but the whole party returned here, 
and after re-examining the country, decided on the 
7th of June, 1820, by vote of three to two, for the 
Bluffs, to locate the capital here. On the 6th of 
January following, 1821, the selection was approved 
by the Legislature and the location decided irrevocably. 



The commissioners reported that they had selected 
Sections 1 and 12, east and west fractional sections 
numbered 2, east fractional section numbered 1 1 , 
and so much of the east part of west fractional sec- 
tion numbered 3, to be set off by a line north and 
south, as will complete the donation of two thou- 
sand five hundred and sixty acres, in Township 15, 
Range 3 east. The Legislature, after approving the 
location, named the future city and capital Indianapo- 
lis, the " city of Indiana." The name was suggested 
by the late Judge Jeremiah Sullivan, in the com- 
mittee charged with the preparation of the confirma- 
tory bill. He gave an interesting account of the 
affair in a letter to Governor Baker, which may be 
pertinently introduced here : 

" I have a very distinct recollection of the great 
diversity of opinion that prevailed as to the name 
by which the new town should receive legislative 
baptism. The bill, if I remember aright, was re- 
ported by Judge Polk, and was in the main very 
acceptable. A blank, of course, was left for the 
name of the town that was to become the seat of 
government, and during the two or three days we 
spent in endeavoring to fill the blank there wa.^ 
in the debate some sharpness and much amuse- 
ment. Gen. Marston G. Clark, of Washington 
County, proposed ' Tecumseh' as the name, and 
very earnestly insisted on its adoption. When it 
failed he suggested other Indian names, which I 
have forgotten. They all were rejected. A member 
proposed ' Suwarrow,' which met with no favor. 
Other names were proposed, discussed, laughed at, 
and voted down, and the House, without coming to 
any agreement, adjourned until the next day. There 
were many amusing things said, but my remem- 
brance of them is not sufficiently distinct to state 
them with accuracy. I had gone to Corydon with 
the intention of proposing Indianapolis as the name 
of the town, and on the evening of the adjourn- 
ment above mentioned, or the next morning, I sug- 
gested to Mr. Samuel Merrill, the representative 
from Switzerland County, the name I proposed. 
He at once adopted it, and said he would support 
it. We together called on Governor Jennings, who 
had been a witness of the amusing proceedings the 



EARLY SETTLEMENTS. 



25 



day previous, and told him what conclusion we had 
come to, and asked him what he thought of the 
Dame. He gave us to understand that he favored 
it, and that he would not hesitate to so express him- 
self When the House met and went into com- 
mittee on the bill, I moved to fill the blank with 
Indianapolis. The name created quite a laugh. Mr. 
Merrill, however, seconded the motion. We dis- 
cussed the matter fully, gave our reasons in sup- 
port of the proposition, the members conversed with 
each other informally in regard to it, and the name 
gradually commended itself to the committee, and 
was adopted. The principal reason in favor of adopt- 
ing the name proposed — to wit. that the Greek ter- 
mination would indicate to all the world the locality 
of the town — was, I am sure, the reason that over- 
came the opposition to the name. The town was 
finally named Indianapolis with but little if any op- 
position." One may well feel puzzled to understand 
the force exerted by the argument that " the Greek 
termination of the name would indicate the locality 
of the town." The termination means " city," and 
that is all. The other half of the name would in- 
dicate locality though, and the combination would 
fairly enough suggest a State capital, so that its apt- 
ness is evident, whether the argument that secured it 
was sound or not. 

By the same act of approval and naming the new 
capital the Legislature appointed Christopher Harri- 
son (no relative of the general's), James Jones, and 
Samuel P. Booker commissioners to lay oif the town. 
They were directed to meet on the site on the first 
Monday of April, 1821, to perform that duty, and 
make plats or maps of the town, one for the Secretary 
of State and one for the State agent. They were 
also to advertise and hold a sale of the lots as soon as 
practicable, reserving the alternate lots. The pro- 
ceeds of the sales were to be used in erecting the 
buildings required by the government. Harrison was 
the only one of the commissioners who attempted to 
perform his duties. He was a Marylander by birth, 
a very eccentric man, of excellent education and cul- 
tivated tastes, who came to Southern Indiana early 
in the century, and some years after the completion 
of his work as commissioner returned to Maryland, 



and lived to a ripe old age. It is said on good au- 
thority that he was engaged to be married to Miss 
Elizabeth Patterson, a noted belle of Baltimore, but 
the attentions of Prince Jerome Bonaparte over- 
powered her scruples and her fiiith, and she married 
the brother of the great Corsicau, only to find herself 
repudiated by him and excluded from the ambition 
that had betrayed her. Mr. Harrison came to Jeffer- 
son County about 1804, and lived there the life of 
a hermit with his dogs and books for several years, 
then removed to Salem, Washington Co., and there 
his rare attainments — rare in the backwoods at 
least — and his abilities forced him into public life, 
and finally into the position of founder of the city of 
Indianapolis. He came to the little yearling village 
at the time appointed, and selected as surveyors Alex- 
ander Ralston and Elias P. Fordham, with Benjamin 
I. Blythe as clerk of the Board of Commissioners. 

Mr. Blythe lived to an advanced age in the city, 
and was one of the earliest of the enterprising men 
who laid the foundations of the city's pork-packing 
prosperity. Of Mr. J^ordham little appears to have 
been known at the time, and nothing can be learned 
now. Ralston was a Scotchman, a man of marked 
ability and rare attainments as well as high chaiacter. 
When quite young he had been employed in assist- 
ing the laying out of Washington City, and may have 
got then the preference for wide streets and oblique 
avenues which he exhibited so signally and benefi- 
cially here. He became associated with Burr's expe- 
dition, presumably in ignorance of its real character, 
as most of the conspirator's following were, came West 
in connection with it, and remained when it failed. 
He remained in Indianapolis after completing his 
work, and in 1825 was appointed by the Legislature 
to survey White River and make an estimate of the 
expense of removing the drifts and snags and other 
obstructions to navigation, and reported the following 
winter. He built a brick residence on West Mary- 
land Street, a half-square west of Tennessee, and lived 
there till his death, early in 1827. He was buried 
in the " Old Cemetery," and his grave was long un- 
known. A few years ago, however, some old resi- 
dents made a close examination and found it, or were 
confident they had. 



26 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



The Indiana Journal of Jan. 9, 1827, contained 
an obituary notice of him, which from his prom- 
inence in the settlement may be reproduced here. 
He died on the 5th, at the age of fifty-six. " Mr. 
Ralston was a native of Scotland, but emigrated 
early in life to America. He lived many years at 
the city of Washington, then at Louisville, Ky., 
afterwards near Salem, in this State, and for the last 
five years in this place. His earliest and latest occu- 
pation in the United States was surveying, in which 
he was long employed by the government at Wash- 
ington, and his removal to this place was occasioned 
by his appointment to make the original survey of it. 
During the intervening period merchandise and agri- 
culture engaged his attention. In the latter part of his 
life he was our county surveyor, and his leisure time 
was employed in attending to a neat garden, in which 
various useful and ornamental plants, fruit, etc., were 
carefully cultivated. Mr. Ralston was successful in 
his profession, honest in his dealings, gentlemanly in 
his deportment, a liberal and hospitable citizen, and 
a sincere and ardent friend. He had experienced 
much both of the pleasures and pains incident to 
human life. The respect and esteem of the generous 
and good were always awarded to him, and he found 
constant satisfaction in conferring favors, not only on 
his own species, but even on the humblest of the 
brute creation ; he would not willingly set foot upon 
a worm. But his unsuspecting nature made him 
liable to imposition ; his sanguine expectations were 
often disappointed. His independent spirit some- 
times provoked opposition, and his extreme sensi- 
bility was frequently put to the severest trials. 
Though he stood alone among us in respect to 
family, his loss will be long lamented." Mr. Now- 
land adds that the old bachelor's house " was kept 
for him by a colored woman named Chaney Lively," 
who was the second colored person in the place. Dr. 
Mitchell brought the first, a boy named Ephraim 
Ensaw. These were the first colored residents, but 
a colored man came out with Mr. Maxwell in 1820, 
and remained here a few months. His name was 
Aaron Wallace, and a few years ago he returned here 
to reside permanently, after an absence of nearly 
sixty years. " Aunt Chaney," as she was called, was 



well known to the South Side school-boys forty-five 
or fifty years ago. Her residence was the north- 
west corner of Maryland and Meridian Streets. She 
married a barber named Britton. 

On the completion of the surveying force, work 
was begun at once in marking out the sections and 
fractions selected by the locating commissioners in 
June, 1820. The whole donation lay upon the east 
bank of the river except a fractional section on the 
west bank, where Indianola stands. A plat of one 
mile square was set in the middle of the donation, 
and almost in the middle of the plat the Circle was 
placed, to be made the site of the Grovernor's resi- 
dence. It was not used for that purpose, however, 
though a large house was erected there in 1827 at 
considerable expense, some six thousand five hundred 
dollars. The publicity of the situation made it un- 
desirable as a family residence, and it was used ex- 
clusively as rooms for the judges of the Supreme 
Court, the State auditor and engineer, the State 
Library and State Bank, and occasionally for local 
or individual purposes. It was proposed at one 
time to add wings on each side and make a State- 
House of it. It was sold as old building material in 
April, 1857, for six hundred and sixty-five dollars, 
and torn down and carried ofi" in the last days of the 
same month. The Circle was not put in the centre 
of the donation, because if the centre of the town 
had corresponded with the centre of the donation, it 
would have thrown too much of the central portion 
of the town plat into the valley of Pogue's Creek. 
The point where the four sections of the donation 
" corner" is about ten feet west and five feet south of 
the southeast corner of the lot occupied by the Occi- 
dental Hotel. The Circle was set nearly a square 
east and two squares north for the purpose stated. 
A natural elevation at this point, thickly covered 
with a growth of tall straight sugar-trees, aided its 
nearly central situation iu making it the centre of the 
original town plat. It contains between three and 
four acres, and is surrounded by an eighty-feet street. 

Extending north and south from the Circle on a 
meridian line is Meridian Street, and crossing the 
latter from east to west is Market Street, both carried 
to the limits of the city, except the west end of 



EARLY SETTLEMENTS. 



27 



Market, which is blocked at Blackford Street. Par- 
allel with Market and one square south is Washing- 
ton Street, the main thoroughfare of the city, one 
hundred and twenty feet wide. The whole plat, one 
mile square, is surrounded by ninety-feet streets, 
called respectively, from their location, North, South, 
East, and West. The area inside these limits is di- 
vided into eighty-nine blocks and fractions by nine 
streets north to south and nine east to west, each 
ninety feet wide except Washington. The blocks 
are four hundred and twenty feet square, and are 
divided into four equal parts, each containing one 
acre, by alleys fifteen feet wide running north and 
south, and thirty feet running east and west. All of 
the streets, except the two central ones meeting at 
the Circle, the main street, and the four bounding 
the plat, are named for the States of the Union in 
1821. The most marked features of the original de- 
sign of the city are the Circle and the avenues radi- 
ating from it, and starting at the corners most re- 
mote from it of the four blocks that adjoin it. 
These are named for States like the others. The 
squares are broken by six fractions and three con- 
siderable irregular tracts in Pogue's Run Valley, so 
that the number of completed squares is only eighty- 
nine. The intersections of the streets would have 
made one hundred if completion had been possible. 
Three lots were made of each quarter of a square or 
acre, giving to each lot of the original plat one-third 
of an acre. Few of these now retain their original 
dimensions. They were sixty-seven and one-half 
feet wide on the streets by one hundred and ninety- 
five feet deep, being longer where they abutted upon 
the narrow alleys. The half-mile of the donation 
lying all round the mile square in the middle of it, 
except on the river side, was not platted. In 1822 
the Legislature ordered the fraction west of the river 
to be laid off in tracts of five to twenty acres by the 
State agent, and in 1831 he was ordered to lay off all 
the remainder of the donation, some nineteen hun- 
dred acres, into lots of two to fifty acres, and sell 
them at a minimum price of ten dollars an acre. 
These were used chiefly for farming purposes and 
pastures till the growth of the city began to overrun 
them. It was never imagined that the city or town 



would extend to these exterior lots at all, and that 
they should be covered by it would have been as in- 
credible as an Arabian Night tale. Now the city 
covers nearly three times the area of tiie donation. 
The four streets bounding the old plat — North, 
South, East, and West — were not in it at first, but 
were put there at the solicitation of James Blake, 
who represented to Commissioner Harrison the ad- 
vantages such streets would be as public drives and 
promenades when the town grew up. 

The act of the Legislature creating the commission 
to lay off the town required the appointment of an 
agent of the State at six hundred dollars a year for a 
term of three years, who was to live at Indianapolis 
and attend to the disposal of the lots. Gen. John 
Carr was the first agent. The place was subsequently 
held by several persons, among them James Milroy, 
Bethuel F. Morris, Ebenezer Sharpe, B. I. Blythe, 
clerk of the commission, Thomas H. Sharpe, and 
John Cook. The duties were finally transferred to 
the-Secretary of State. The commissioners, or rather 
one of them, having completed the survey and plat, 
advertised the first sale for the second Monday in 
October, 1821, and it took place at the tavern of Mat- 
thias Nowland, father of John H. B., author of 
" Prominent Citizens of Indianapolis." This stood 
near Washington Street, west of Missouri; and at 
the request of the State agent, Mr. Nowland had 
built an addition to serve as an office. Oct. 9, 1821, 
was " a raw, cold day," says a sketch of the city's 
early history written some twenty-five years or more 
ago ; " a high wind prevailed, and a man in attend- 
ance came near being killed by a falling limb." The 
town was very much crowded. Strangers from vari- 
ous quarters had come to settle in the new place or 
to secure property. The three taverns, kept by 
Hawkins, Carter, and Nowland, were crowded, and 
in many cases the citizens were called upon to share 
their homes with the new-comers till they could erect 
cabins. The bidding at the sale was quite spirited, 
and, considering the position and advantages of the 
settlement, high prices were obtained in some cases. 
" The reservation of alternate lots was begun by the 
commissioner by reserving lot No. 1." The best 
sales were north and east of the bulk of the settle- 



28 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



ment, which was on and near the river, owing to 
the prevalence of chills and fever the summer before, 
when everybody, old and young, was down at one 
time or another, except Enoch Banks, Thomas 
Chinn, and Nancy Hendricks. This visitation gave 
an eastern impulse to settlement, and accounts for 
the higher prices of lots more remote from the river. 
The number of lots sold amounted to three hundred 
and fourteen, mostly in the central and northern parte 
of the plat, and the total value of the sales was thirty- 
five thousand five hundred and ninety -six dollars and 
twenty-five cents. The highest price brought by a 
single lot was by the lot on Washington Street, west 
of the Court-House Square, which brought five hun- 
dred and sixty dollars. That on the same street, 
west of the State- House Square, brought five hun- 
dred dollars. The intervening lots sold from one 
hundred to three hundred dollars each. The condi- 
tions of the sale required the payment of one-fifth of 
the purchase-money down, and the remainder in four 
equal annual installments. 

The sales continued a week, and the amount paid 
down was seven thousand one hundred and nineteen 
dollars and twenty-five cents. Thomas Carter was auc- 
tioneer, and the late James M. Ray clerk of these first 
sales. Not a few of these lots are now worth one thou- 
sand dollars a front foot, some are worth more. " Out- 
lots" that were sold at first for ten, twenty, or thirty 
dollars could not be bought now for as many thou- 
sands, in some cases twice that. Of the lots purchased 
at this first sale, one hundred and sixty-nine were 
afterwards forfeited, or the payments made on one lot 
were transferred to another, under an act passed a little 
later " for the relief of purchasers of lots in Indian- 
apolis." The early sketch already referred to says, 
" These forfeited lots and the reserved lots were once 
or twice afterwards offered at public sale, and kept 
open for purchase all the time. But prices became 
depressed, money scarce, sickness caused general de- 
spondency, and for several years after the winter of 
1821-22 there were but few lots sold. The amount 
of cash reserved by the State for donation lands up 
to 1842 was about one hundred and twenty-five 
thousand dollars." This the law made a public build- 
ing fund, out of which was erected a State-House, 



court-house. Governor's house (in the Circle), treas- 
urer's house and office, office of clerk of the Supreme 
Court, and a ferryman's house at the foot of Wash- 
ington Street. 

The settlers brought to the new capital by the re- 
port of its selection for that purpose speedily trebled 
its population, and more. During the summer and 
fall of 1820 there came Dr. Samuel G. Mitchell, 
John and James Givan (among the first merchants I, 
William or Wilkes Reagan, Matthias Nowland, James 
M. Ray, James Blake, Nathaniel Cox, Thomas 
Anderson, John Hawkins, Dr. Livingston Dunlap, 
Daniel Yandes, David Wood, Col. Alexander W. 
Russell, Dr. Isaac Coe, Douglass Maguire, and others 
unnamed and not easily identified as to the time 
of arrival. Morris Morris is said by one of these 
early sketches to have come here in 1819, in the fall 
(probably inadvertently for 1820), when he came only 
in the fall of 1821. Mr. Nowland says that James 
M. Ray, James Blake, Daniel Yandes, the Givans, 
Dr. Mitchell, Dr. Coe, Dr. Dunlap, Col. Russell came 
the following spring and summer, 1821, and with 
them Daniel Shaffer, the first merchant, who died in 
the summer of 1821, Robert Wilmot, and Calvin 
Fletcher, the first lawyer. It is impossible now to 
make a complete list of the settlers up to the layini: 
out of the town and the first sale of lots, but with 
the help of such records as have been made, and such 
memories as are accessible, a muster-roll of consid- 
erable interest can be made : 

George Pogue (blacksmith), possibly, 1819, spring. 

Fabius M. Finch (lawyer), 1819, summer. 

John McCormick (tavern), 1820, spring. 

James McCormick, 1820, spring. 

John Maxwell ('squire), 1820, spring. 

John Cowan, 1820, spring. 

Robert Harding (farmer), 1820, spring. 

Van Blaricum (farmer), 1820, spring. 

Henry Davis (chairmaker), 1820, spring. 

Samuel Davis (chairmaker), 1820, spring. 

Jeremiah J. Corbaley (farmer), 1820, spring. 

Robert Barnhill (farmer), 1820, spring. 

Isaac Wilson (miller), 1820, spring. 

Matthias Nowland (mason), 1820, fall. 

Dr. S. G. Mitchell, 1820, fall. 



EARLY SETTLEMENTS. 



29 



Thomas Anderson (wagonmaker), 1820, fall. 

Alexander Ralston (surveyor), 1820, fall. 

Dr. Isaac Coe, 1820, spring. 

James B. Hall (carpenter), 1820, winter. 
■" Andrew Byrne (tailor), 1820, fall. 

Michael lugals (teamster), 1820, winter. 

Kenneth A. Seudder (first drug-store), 1820, sum- 
mer. 

Conrad Brussell (baker), 1820, fall. 

Milo R. Davis (plasterer), 1820, winter. 

Samuel Morrow, 1820, summer. 

James J. iMcIlvain ('squire), 1820, summer. 

Eliakim Harding ('squire), 1821, summer. 

Mr. Lawrence (teacher), 1821, summer. 

Daniel Larkias (grocery), 1821, summer. 

Lismund Basye (Swede), 1821, fall. 

Robert Wilmot (merchant), 1820, winter. 

James Kittleman (shoemaker), 1821. 

Andrew Wilson (miller), 1821. 

John McClung (preacher), 1821, spring. 

Daniel Shaffer, 1821, January. 

Jeremiah Johnson (farmer), 1820, spring. 

Wilkes Reagan (butcher), 1821, .summer. 

Obed Foote (lawyer), 1821, summer. 

Calvin Fletcher (lawyer), 1821, fall. 

James Blake, 1821, spring. 

Alexander W. Russell (merchant), 1821, spring. 

Caleb Soudder, 1821, fall. 

George Smith (first publisher), 1821, fall. 

James Scott (Methodist preacher), 1821, fall. 

0. P. Gaines (first Presbyterian preacher), 1821, 
summer. 

James Linton (millwright), 1821, summer. 

Joseph C. Reed (first teacher), 1821, spring. 

James Paxton (militia officer), 1821, fall. 

Daniel Yandes (first tanner), 1821, January. 

Caleb Soudder (cabinet-maker), 1821, fall. 

George Myers (potter), 1821, f\dl. 

Nathaniel Bolton (first editor), 1821, fall. 

Amos Hanway (cooper), 1821, summer. 

John Shunk (hatter), 1821, fall. 

Isaac Lynch (shoemaker), 1821, fall. 

James M. Ray (coach-lace maker), 1821, summer. 

David Mallory (barber), 1821, spring. 

John Y. Osborn, 1821, spring. 



Samuel Henderson (first postmaster), 1821, fail. 

Samuel Rooker (first painter), 1821, summer. 

Thomas Johnson (farmer), 1820, winter. 

Robert Patterson, 1821, fall. . 

Aaron Drake (first mail), 1821. 

William Townsend, 1820, summer. 

J. R. Crumbaugh, 1821. 

Harvey Gregg, 1821, fall. 

Nathaniel Cox (carpenter), 1821. 

Some thirty-three years ago the late Samuel Mer- 
rill, Treasurer of State at the time of the removal of 
the capital from Corydon to Indianapolis in the fall 
of 1824, and charged with the supervision of the 
work, prepared a map illustrating the progress of the 
town at different periods, 1821, 1823, 1835, and 
1850, to accompany the first historical sketch of the 
city, prepared by him for the first " Gazetteer," issued 
in 1850 by Chamberlain & Co., booksellers in the 
town. The reader, understanding the old plat of the 
city, and observing that its western boundary at 
West Street was about a quarter of a mile from the 
river, will see quite accurately the size and location 
of the infant settlement of 1821 from a description 
of the outline on this map. It extended along 
Washington Street, wholly south of it, to a point 
a little less than a block east of West Street, and 
was less than a block in width for a distance equal to 
two blocks, when it began widening, and at the river 
reached from about the point where Georgia Street 
strikes the bank to the old National road bridge. 
The little settlement of Maxwell and Cowan farther 
north, near the site of the City Hospital, seems to 
have been completely detached from the main body 
of the village. In 1823, the year before the arrival 
of the capital, the settlement had shifted entirely 
away from the river, its western extremity being 
near West Street, and it extended in a narrow line 
about a block in width on each side of Washington 
Street to Meridian Street, where a point ran south to 
Georgia Street on each side of Meridian, while east 
of it, and passing east of the Circle, another point pro- 
jected north as far as Ohio Street, and a third point 
along Washington carried the settlement to a point 
about half-way between Alabama and New Jersey 
Streets. The shape of it is an exact cross, with one 



30 



HISTOKY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



arm a little higher than the other. In 1835 the 
town had been under its own government by trus- 
tees for two or three years, had established a brewery 
and several manufactures, besides those for custom 
service, had been the capital for over ten years, had 
nearly completed the State-House, had a population 
of about two thousand, and the County that year, as 
announced by Mr. Calvin Fletcher in a public ad- 
dress, contained thirteen hundred farms, and had 
produced one million three hundred thousand bushels 
of corn. In this condition of things the town formed 
an irregular figure, much like a balloon, with the neck 
near West Street, and the " bulge" opening pretty 
rapidly up north to Michigan Street, reaching east to 
New Jersey, and then south to Georgia and a little 
below ; at the widest place, north to south, covering 
seven squares, and it« greatest length along Washing- 
ton Street very nearly covering the mile of the plat. 
In 1850 it covered all of the plat but the northwest, 
southwest, and southeast corners, and more than made 
up for these deficiencies by projecting beyond it on 
the northeast, the east, and the south along the Bluff 
road or South Meridian Street. 

In May, 1820, in three months after the first set- 
tlement, or in any case after the first indications of a 
possible settlement of more than a family or two, 
there were fifteen or twenty families on the donation. 
These increased to thirty or forty during the succeed- 
ing year to July, when the sales of government lands 
in this and adjoining counties began at the land- 
office in Brookville, Franklin Co. Happily for 
the pioneers of 1820, there was not so much sick- 
ness as might have been expected, and nothing com- 
parable to the visitation the next year, and, quite as 
happily, nature had provided a " deadening," in 
which they raised with little labor comparatively all 
the corn and vegetables they needed to make a com- 
fortable subsistence with the abundance of fish and 
game to be had close at hand and with little trouble. 
This natural " deadening" lay at the northwest cor- 
ner of the donation, and contained some hundred or 
more acres. The trees had been killed by eater- 
pillars, and the pioneers cleared ofi' the underbrush 
together, and held the field in common, simply 
marking off each family's share by what Mr. Now- 



land calls "turn-rows." This was known as the 
"big field" for several years. Its products were 
chiefly corn and pumpkins. In addition to this pro- 
vision for the staples of vegetable food, each family 
had a truck-patch in the rear of their log cabin, 
where they raised such vegetables as they required 
for immediate use, including the "love-apple," or 
tomato, which nobody dreamed of eating for twenty 
years afterwards. Little more belongs to the history 
of this first year of the city's settlement than an ac- 
count of the condition and modes of life of the set- 
tlers, and that being much the same for all the early 
years of the settlement will be told for all at once. 

The year 1821 was an eventful one for the infant 
capital. During the summer the donation had been 
surveyed and the original city plat made, and a 
number of the men who were to be most conspicuous 
in its after-history, in spreading its business, estab- 
lishing its industries, founding its schools, main- 
taining its morality, its Fletcher, Yandes. Blake, 
Ray, Morris, Russell, Dunlap, Brown, Landis, 
had come or were on the way. It was a year of 
universal sickness, privation, and suffering. Says an 
early account, " Towards the end of summer and 
during the fall epidemic remittent and intermittent 
fevers and agues assailed the people, and scarcely a 
person was left untouched. (In another place it is 
told that Nancy Hendricks, Enoch Banks, and 
Thomas Chinn were all that escaped.) The few 
healthy ones were employed day and night in minis- 
tering to the wants of the sufferers, and many in- 
stances of generous and devoted friendship occurred 
at this time. The recollection of their bitter suffer- 
ings bound the early settlers together in after-life. 
The new-comers might well be appalled at the pros- 
pect before them, and it is no wonder that extrava- 
gant stories were circulated of the sickness at In- 
dianapolis. Although nearly every person in the 
settlement was more or less assailed, and several 
hundred cases occurred during the prevalence of the 
epidemic, not more than twenty-five terminated 
fatally. As winter approached the health of the 
community improved, and by the end of the year it 
was entirely restored. No cause was discovered for 
the unparalleled visitation, which the old settlers 



EARLY SETTLEMENTS. 



31 



hold to this day in vivid remembrance." The report 
of this calamity went abroad, and for many years 
more or less aifected the otherwise strong induce- 
ments of the settlement to new settlers, and for 
thirty years malarial disorders came almost as regu- 
larly as the seasons. The " sickly season" was as 
well known and well defined a period as the " dog- 
days," and continued so till the general clearing of 
the county and drying out of low bottom lands and 
swamps had diminished the sources of malarial influ- 
ence. The effect of the epidemic of 1821 on the 
settlement was to force it back from the river, and 
extend it eastward past the Circle and Court-House 
Square along Washington Street. 

The first death in the settlement, by tradition, was 
that of Daniel Shaffer, a merchant, who came early 
in the year, opened a store on the high ground south 
of the creek, near the present line of South Street, 
and died in the summer following. The first woman 
that died was the wife of John Maxwell, one of the 
first two settlers after the McCormicks in the spring 
of 1820. She died 3d of July, 1821, and was buried 
on the bluff of Fall Creek, near the site of the City 
Hospital. Eight persons were buried there during 
the epidemic. Mr. Commissioner Harrison was seared 
off home by it, but before he went he authorized 
Daniel Shaffer, James Blake, and Matthias R. Now- 
land to select a site for a cemetery. " One Sunday 
morning early in August," says Mr. J. H. B. Now- 
land, " they selected the place now known as the Old 
Graveyard. One week from that day Mr. Shaffer was 
buried there." If his memory is correct Mrs. Max- 
well's was the first death in the settlement, and the 
traditional burial of Shaffer near the corner of South 
and Pennsylvania Streets, and subsequent removal to 
the " Old Graveyard," now " Greenlawn Cemetery," is 
a mistake. Most of the burials during the epidemic 
were in that first cemetery. 

Following this visitation came another hardly less 
intolerable. The universal sickness prevented the 
cultivation of the " caterpillar deadening," and the 
influx of settlers at and after the first sales of lots 
made provisions distressingly scarce. Coffee was 
fifty cents a pound ; tea, two dollars ; corn, one dollar 
a bushel ; flour, four to five dollars a hundred ; coarse 



muslin or " factory," forty-five cents a yard. There 
were no roads into the settlement, nor anything better 
than cow-paths. All goods and provisions had to be 
carried on horseback from the White Water Valley, 
sixty miles away. The nearest grist-mill was Good- 
lander's, on the White Water. Corn was mainly 
bought of the Indians up the river and brought down 
in boats. Later keel-boats brought considerable car- 
goes of flour, whiskey, and powder, chiefly up the 
river. The settlers considered each one's stock of 
provisions the property of all that needed it, and 
divided with unstinted generosity. 

The year 1821 was marked by the establishment 
of the first business house, the store of Daniel Shaffer. 
He was followed in a short time by James and John 
Givan, the latter of whom became a vagrant and 
pauper, supported by an annuity contributed by the 
merchants of the city, and died only a few years ago, 
a very old man, with a marvelous memory of events 
and persons of that early time. Robert Wilmot began 
merchandising about the same time, or perhaps a little 
earlier, near the present corner of Washington and 
West Streets, in a row of cabins called " Wilmot's 
Row." Luke Walpole opened in the same business 
in the fall on the southwest corner of the State-House 
Square, Jacob Landis on the southeast corner, and 
Jeremiah Johnson on the northwest corner of Market 
and Pennsylvania. The first log school-house was 
built the same year, about where Kentucky Avenue 
enters Illinois Street, near a large pond. The first 
teacher was Joseph C. Reed, afterwards the first 
county recorder. The first log house on the old city 
plat was built by Isaac Wilson in the spring of 1820, 
on the northwest corner of what was afterwards the 
State- House Square. The first frame house was built 
by James Blake on the lot east of Masonic Hall in the 
fall of 1821. The timber had been cut during the 
summer by James Paxton on the donation. This was 
the first plastered house. That winter Thomas Carter, 
the auctioneer of the lot sales, built a ceiled frame 
tavern about where No. 40 West Washington Street 
is, and called it the " Rosebush," in the old English 
fashion of naming taverns, from a rough painting of 
that object on the sign. It was long after removed 
to a point near the canal, and then to West Street 



32 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



near Maryland. John Hawkins had built a log tavern 
the fall before on Washington Street, north side, near 
the middle of the block east of Meridian. It may be 
noted in this connection, though chronologically dis- 
located, that the first brick building was erected for 
John Johnson in 1822-23, on a lot opposite the site 
of the post-ofiice. It was torn down a few years ago 
to make room for a better structure. Though the 
Johnson house was undoubtedly the first brick build- 
ing in the town, it is not so certain that it was the first 
in the county. Old residents of Wayne township, like 
Mr. Blattern and Mr. Gladden, say that a two-story 
brick residence was built by John Cook in 1821, in 
what is now Maywood, near the line of Wayne and 
Decatur townships. In its latter days, thirty-five or 
forty years ago, it cracked through the middle, and 
was held together by a hoop of large square logs, 
notched at the corners and wedged tight, between the 
lower and upper stories. It was a rare style of repair 
for a building of any kind, and may still be remem- 
bered by old residents on that account. It stood on 
the northern blufi" of a low, level, wet prairie, the 
only one in the county, of which the now drained and 
cultivated remains, with possible patches of the orig- 
inal condition, are on the southern border of May- 
wood, and near the residence of Fielding Beeler, Esq. 
James Linton built the first two-story house, a frame, 
in the spring of 1822, on the site of No. 76 West 
Washington Street. He also built the first saw-mill 
on Fall Creek, above the Indiana Avenue or Craw- 
fordsville road bridge, and about the same time built 
the first grist-mill for Isaac Wilson on Fall Creek 
bayou, now known as " the race," near the line of 
North Street. 

The year 1821 saw the beginning of moral and 
intellectual culture as well as business. A school 
was taught by Mr. Reed during the latter part of 
the year, and Rev. John McClung, a preacher of 
what was called the " New Light" denomination, 
preached in the spring, some say in the sugar grove 
on the little knoll in the Circle. It is a question 
among the few old settlers who remember the occur- 
rence whether that was the first sermon heard in the 
New Purchase or one preached not far from the 
same time by Rev. Rezin Hammond. Mr. Nowland 



says that if Mr. McClung preached in the settlement 
that spring it must have been at Mr. Barnhill's, who 
belonged to the same denomination but lived outside 
of the donation. An old settler wrote in one of the 
city papers recently that Mr. Hammond preached 
near the site of the old State Bank, corner of Illinois 
Street and Kentucky Avenue, near a pond, which 
must have been close to the site of the first school- 
house, while others say he preached in the woods on 
the State-House Square. Mr. Nowland, years after- 
wards, met Mr. Hammond at Jeffersonville, and this 
first sermon was recalled. The party surveying the 
town, under Ralston, were then at work near the 
Circle, and they prepared on Saturday evening for 
the sermon next day by rolling logs together for 
seats and building a rough log rostrum. Not more 
than forty or fifty persons attended. " A few mo- 
ments after the services commenced," says Mr. Now- 
land, " an Indian and his squaw came by on their 
ponies. They halted a moment, and passed on to- 
wards the trading-house of Robert Wilmot. He was 
in the congregation, and at once rose and followed 
them ; but before he was out of hearing Mr. Hammond 
said, ' The pelts and furs of the Indians had more 
attractions for his Kentucky friend than the words 
of God.' There can be little doubt," Mr. Nowland 
concludes, " that this was the first sermon preached 
in Indianapolis ; it was so regarded at the time." 
In August of the same year Rev. Ludlow G. Gaines, 
a Presbyterian clergyman, preached in the grove 
south of the State-House Square. No church or- 
ganization was attempted, however, till the spring of 
1823. In July it was completed, and steps taken to 
build a church on North Pennsylvania Street, on the 
site of the Exchange Block. It was finished, at a 
cost of twelve hundred dollars, and occupied in 1824. 
The " Indianapolis Circuit" of the Methodist Church 
was organized by Rev. William Cravens in 1822, 
under authority of the Missouri Conference, but 
Rev. James Scott had preached here in private 
houses as early as October, 1821, by appointment of 
the same authority. A camp-meeting had been held 
in 1822, September 12th, and a second one in May, 
1823, aft«r the organization of the circuit, but no 
house was occupied specially as a church til! the 



I 



EARLY SETTLEMENTS. 



33 



summer of 1825, when a hewed-log house on 
Maryland Street near Meridian was bought for 
three hundred dollars and used for four years. In 
1828-29 a brick building was erected, at a cost of 
three thousand dollars, on the southwest corner of 
Circle and Meridian Streets, which became, when 
replaced in 1846, " Wesley Chapel." The first 
Baptist Church was organized in September, 1822, 
but held services in private houses or in a log 
school-house " on and partly in Maryland Street," 
between Tennessee and Mississippi Streets, which 
could be had " without interruption," as a committee 
reported in May, 1823, till a brick house was built 
on the southwest corner of Maryland and Meridian 
Streets in 1829. These were the beginnings of the 
three pioneer churches in Indianapolis and the New 
Purchase. They are noted here to present as com- 
plete a view as possible of the early settlement and 
history of the city and county. 

In the summer of 1821 the first marriage oc- 
curred. The bride was Miss Jane Reagan, the 
groom Jeremiah Johnson, who had to walk through 
an unbroken and pathless forest sixty miles to Con- 
nersville for his license (this county at that time 
having no organization), and the walk back made one 
hundred and twenty miles. He was an eccentric 
man, witty, cynical, with a fashion of retracting his 
lips when talking so as to show his yellow, tobacco- 
stained teeth, giving him something of the expression 
of a snarling dog. He was full of humorous conceits 
and quaint comparisons, and a delightful companion for 
young men when he was " tight" enough to feel jolly, 
as he frequently was. When the first telegraph line 
was completed to the city in 1848, " Old Jerry" saw 
it as ho was passing along Washington Street com- 
fortably " full," and broke out in a sort of apostrophe, 
" There ! they're driving lightning down the road, 
and with a single line at that !" Any one who has 
seen a team driven by a " single line" will appreciate 
" Old Jerry's" joke. He died very suddenly in 
1857. 

Among other first events that have traditionally 
marked this year was the birth of the first child. But 
the tradition of that interesting occurrence is con- 
tested by two living witnesses, who rather confuse 



one's faith, and leave a slight leaning to the skepticism 
which would doubt if any child was born at all. 
The traditional opinion, supported by two or three 
historical sketches, is that Mordecai Harding was 
that memorable infant, but tradition and history are 
both impeached by Mr. William H. White (before re- 
ferred to) and by Mr. Shirts, of Hamilton, who claims 
that Mr. Corbaley's son Richard was the first, in 
August, 1820, at his residence in the western part 
of the donation. Mr. Nowland denies the donation, 
says Mr. Corbaley lived west of the west donation 
line, but concedes the principal fact. Mr. White's 
claim is disputed by the general opinion of old set- 
tlers, but the other seems to be settled. 

During the whole of the year 1820 the " New 
Purchase" formed part of Delaware County, which, 
then unorganized, vaguely covered most of the northern 
and central portions of the State, and was attached 
for judicial purposes to Wayne and Fayette Counties. 
The residents of White River Valley were sued and 
compelled to answer in the courts of the White 
Water Valley, sixty miles away, and the compulsion 
was costly, irritating, and intolerable. The jurisdic- 
tion was disputed and resisted, and the Legislature, 
to avoid further and graver trouble, passed an act 
of Jan. 9, 1821, authorizing the appointment of 
two justices of the peace for the new settlements, 
with appeals to the Bartholomew Circuit Court. 
In April, 1821, Governor Jennings appointed John 
Maxwell, but he retained the office only a few 
months, and resigned. The settlers then elected 
informally James Mcllvaine, and the Governor 
commissioned him in October. He is described 
by the old residents who remember him, and by 
the sketches that speak of this period of the city's 
history, as holding court at the door of his little 
log shanty, on the northwest corner of Pennsylvania 
and Michigan Streets, with the jury sitting on a 
log in front, his pipe in his mouth, and Corbaley, 
the solitary constable, vigilantly crossing the plans 
of culprits to get away into the thick woods close 
about, as they are said to have done sometimes in 
spite of him. The late Calvin Fletcher was then 
the only lawyer, and the primary court of informal 
appeal for the easily-puzzled old squire. The po- 



34 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



sitions of counsel and judge are not often consoli- 
dated in the same hands, — it is too easy for one 
to use and abuse the other ; but it was never 
charged that Mr. Fletcher misled his confidant in 
his own interest. 

The first especially exciting incident in the quiet 
course of the settlement brought the judicial power 
into a dilemma, from which it escaped by a pro- 
cess that did more credit to its ingenuity than its 
sense of justice. On Christmas-day, 1821, four 
Kentucky boatmen who had come up White 
River from the Ohio in a keel-boat to the Bluffs, 
thought that the new settlement farther up would 
be a good place for frolic, and they came and got 
howling drunk before daylight at Dan Larkins' 
" grocery," as liquor-shops were called in those 
days, and frequently were a mixture of saloon and 
grocery-store. As usual with the " half-horse and 
half-alligator" men of the Mike Fink breed, the 
predecessors of the " cow-boy," they began smashing 
the doggery as soon as they had got all the liquor 
they wanted. The row roused the settlement, and 
the gentlemen from Kentucky were respectfully re- 
quested to desist and make less noise. They re- 
sponded with a defiance backed by knives. The 
settlers consulted. They did not want the whiskey 
wasted, and they did want a quiet Christmas, or 
at least to make their own disturbance. They de- 
termined to put down the rioters. James Blake 
proposed to take the leader single-handed if the 
rest of Indianapolis would " tackle" the other three, 
and the consolidated remainder of the embryo cap- 
ital agreed. Blake and the Kentuckian were both 
large, powerful men, but the Hoosier was sober 
and resolute, and the Kentuckian drunk and 
furious, so the rioters were captured and taken to 
Squire Mcllvaine's. They were tried, fined severely, 
and in default of payment ordered to jail. There 
was no jail nearer than Connersville, and it would 
cost as much as their fines to take them there in 
the dead of winter under guard, so they were 
kept under guard here, with instructions to allow a 
little relaxation of vigilance in the night, and the 
hint was followed by the convenient escape of the 
whole party. 



Notwithstanding the appointment of justices, the 
courts of Wayne and Fayette Counties still claimed 
jurisdiction, and doubts were entertained of the va- 
lidity of the appointment of Maxwell and Mcllvaine. 
To remedy all difficulties the citizens held a meeting 
at Hawkins' tavern to discuss the matter, and James 
Blake and Dr. S. G. Mitchell were appointed repre- 
sentatives of the settlement to attend the next session 
of the Legislature at Corydon as lobby members to 
secure an organization of the county. On the 28th 
of November the Legislature legalized the acts of 
Commissioner Harrison, he having acted alone in sur- 
veying the donation and laying off the town. It 
may be noted here as an indication of the readiness 
of the Legislature to encourage the growth of the 
place that on the 31st of December, 1821, an act 
authorized Gen. Carr, the agent, to lease to McCart- 
ney and McDonald forty acres of the donation for 
ten years free, to be occupied as a mill-seat. On the 
same day an act was passed organizing the county, 
and requiring the organization to be completed on the 
1st of April, 1822. It applied the present Court- 
House Square to that purpose, and provided for the 
erection of a court-house fifty feet square and two 
stories high, and appropriated eight thousand dollars 
to it. The courts that held sessions in the capitol. 
Federal, State, and county, were to use it forever if 
they chose, and the State Legislature was to use it 
for fifty years or till a State-House should be built. 
Two per cent, of the lot fund was to be given for the 
founding of a county library. The sessions of court 
and the elections were to be held at Gen. Carr's till 
the court-house was built. Johnson, Hamilton, and 
a large part of Boone, Madison, and Hancock were 
attached to this county for judicial purposes. Marion, 
Monroe, Owen, Greene, Morgan, Lawrence, Rush, 
Hendricks, Decatur, Bartholomew, Shelby, and Jen- 
nings Counties were formed into the Fifth Judicial 
Circuit. William W. Wick, of Connersville, was 
elected president judge by the Legislature, and 
Harvey Bates, of the same place, was appointed 
sheriff by the Governor. They both came on and 
assumed their offices the following February, 1822. 
The latter, by a proclamation of Feb. 22, 1822, or- 
dered an election to be held on the 1st of the next 



i 




iCi^^yCl^ 



EARLY SETTLEMENTS. 



35 



April for two associate judges, a clerk, recorder, and 
three county commissioners. The voting precincts 
were fixed at Gen. Carr's, in the town ; John Page's, 
at Strawtown, in Hamilton County ; John Berry's, 
Andersontown, Madison Co. ; and William McCart- 
ney's, on Pall Creek, near Pendleton. Returns were 
to be forwarded by the 3d of April. 

William W. Wick was a Pennsylvanian by birth, 
but came to Connersville, in this State, when a young 
man, and from there came to Indianapolis to assume 
the duties of his oflBoe. Ex-Senator Oliver H. Smith 
said that in 182-t "he, though a young lawyer, had had 
a good deal of experience in criminal cases." During 
his term as judge of the huge circuit, now formed 
into a half-dozen, he was elected brigadier-general of 
militia, no unimportant position in those days 
to an ambitious young man. He was Secretary 
of State for four years, from 1825 to 1829, then 
prosecuting attorney, and in 1833 was beaten for 
Congress by George L. Kinnard. He was success- 
ful though in 1839, and served in the House 
during the memorable " log cabin and hard cider" 
campaign of 1840. He was elected again in 1845, 
and re-elected in 1847. In 1853 he was made post- 
master by President Pierce, and on the expiration of 
his term in 1857 be retired from public life alto- 
gether. Soon afterwards he went to Franklin and 
made his home with his daughter, and died there in 
1868. 

Hervey Bates, who was appointed sheriff by 
Governor Jennings, was a son of Hervey Bates, who 
was a master of transportation during the Indian war 
under Gens. Wayne and Harmar, and chiefly engaged 
in forwarding provisions and munitions of war from the 
frontier posts to the army in the wilderness. His son 
Hervey, the subject of this biographical sketch, was 
a native of Cincinnati, Ohio, and born in that place 
in 1795, when it was called Fort Washington. When 
but about six years of age he lost his mother, and, his 
father having married again, he left the paternal roof, 
and in Warren, Lebanon County, Ohio, met with 
friends through whose agency he received a sufiBcient 
English education to qualify him for the ordinary 
pursuits of life. On attaining his majority he came 
to Brookville, Franklin County, where he married 



Miss Sidney Sedwick, cousin of the late Gen. James 
Noble, United States senator. During the year 1816 
he cast, in Brookville, his first vote for a delegate to 
form a new constitution for the State of Indiana. 
Soon after Mr. Bates' marriage he removed to Con- 
nersville, and made it his residence until February, 
1822, when Indianapolis, then a mere hamlet, became 
his home. Jonathan Jennings, the first Governor 
after the admission of the State into the Union, ap- 
pointed William W. Wick president judge of the 
then Fifth Judicial District, and Hervey Bates, sheriff 
of Marion County, which then embraced several neigh- 
boring counties for judicial purposes, investing the 
latter with full power for placing in operation the 
necessary legal machinery of the county. This he 
did by issuing a proclamation for an election to be 
held on the first day of April, for the purpose of 
choosing a clerk of the court and other county oflBcers, 
which was the fir.st election of any kind held in the 
new purchase. Mr. Bates was, at the following elec- 
tion held in October, made sheriff for the regular term 
of two years, but declined a subsequent nomination, 
having little taste for the distinctions of oflBce. Mer- 
cantile pursuits subsequently engaged his attention, 
to which he brought his accustomed energy and in- 
dustry, and enjoyed success in his various business 
enterprises. J-i^ViSG 

Mr. Bates was the earliest president of the branch 
of the State Bank located in Indianapolis, and filled 
the position for ten years, during which time it en- 
joyed a career of unparalleled success, and greatly 
advanced the interests of the business community. 
Through the substantial aid afforded by this bank, 
most of the surplus produce of this and adjacent 
counties found a profitable market. Mr. Bates was 
also instrumental in the formation of the earliest 
insurance company, was a stockholder in the first 
hotel built by a company, in the first railroad 
finished to the city of his residence, the earliest gas- 
lifbt and coke company, and in many other enter- 
prises having for their object the public welfare. In 
1852 he began and later completed the spacious hotel 
known as the Bates House, at that time one of the 
most complete and elegant in the West. It was 
erected at a cost of sixty thousand dollars, and 



36 



HISTOEY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



modern improvements added, making a total cost of 
seventy-five thousand dollars. Many other public 
and private buildings in various portions of the city 
owe their existence to the enterprise and means of 
Mr. Bates. He was a generous contributor to all 
worthy religious and benevolent objects, and willingly 
aided in the maintenance of the various charitable 
institutions of Indianapolis. Rev. Henry Ward 
Beecher found in him a cordial friend when a resi- 
dent of the city, and in his less prosperous days. 
The death of Mr. Bates occurred on the 6th of July, 
1876, in his eighty-third year, his wife having died 
previously. His children are Hervey Bates and Mrs. 
L. M. Vance, both of Indianapolis, and Elizabeth H., 
deceased. 

While this first election is pending a return may 
be made for a moment to pick up some incidents of 
the settlement that occurred between the sale of lots 
in October, 1821, and the election, April 1, 1822. 
No clearing of the streets had been attempted when 
the sales took place. Each little cabin was stuck 
away in its own little hole in the dense woods, and 
they were so dense that a man standing near the site 
of Bingham & Walk's jewelry-store could not see a 
house half-way down the block on the other side of 
Washington Street, west of Meridian ; so say old set- 
tlers and common tradition. Gen. Morris once said 
that it was just like camping out in a forest on a 
hunting expedition when he came here with his 
father in 1821, except that the camping-places were 
cabins instead of tents or brush houses. One neigh- 
bor could not see the next one's house. Hawkins 
built his tavern of logs cut on the lot in the very 
centre of Washington Street. For many years the 
less settled streets were more or less filled with trees 
and brush, and the only way along them was a cow- 
path. In order to open Washington Street, which 
the plan of the town had appointed for the principal 
thoroughfare, an offer was made by the settlers to give 
the timber to anybody who would clear off the trees. 
It would have been a very profitable contract a year 
later. The offer was accepted by Lismond Basye, a 
Swede, who had come from Franklin County that 
same fall. The trees were oak, ash, and walnut 
chiefly, and he thought he had a small fortune safe. 



When he had got them all down, and the street " to be" 
was worse blocked than before, and there was no mill 
to saw them, he gave up the job in despair, and the 
people burned the superb timber as it lay. In Jan- 
uary, 1822, the Legislature ordered the opening of a 
number of roads, and appropriated nearly one hundred 
thousand dollars to it, greatly to the satisfaction of the 
entirely isolated settlers. In the same month the 
State agent was instructed to lease unsold lots on 
condition that the lessees would clear them in four 
months, and this, as a step towards getting the settle- 
ment in something like civilized condition, was a 
gratifying measure. The lessees were allowed forty 
days to remove their improvements if the lots should 
be sold during their occupancy of them. 

On the 28tli of January, 1822, the first newspaper 
of the settlement was issued by George Smith and 
Nathaniel Bolton, his step-son, called the Indianapolis 
Gazette. Mr. Nowland's memoir of Mr. Smith says 
" the printing-ofiice was in one corner of the cabin in 
which the family lived," and the cabin was near a 
row of cabins built by Mr. Wilmot, called " Smoky 
Row," west of the line of the future canal and near 
Maryland Street. In the second year the oflice was 
moved to the northeast corner of the State-House 
Square. Mr. Smith learned the printer's trade in the 
oflice of the Observer of Lexington, Ky., and subse- 
quently worked upon the Liberty Hall and Gazette 
of Cincinnati, under the noted editor, Charles Ham- ■ 
mond. In later life he lived in a frame house on the 
northeast corner of Georgia and Tennessee Streets, 
the ground now forming a part of the Catholic prop- 
erty about the St. John's Cathedral and the bishop's 
residence. Here about 1840, John Hodgkins estab- 
lished the first ice-cream or " pleasure garden," as it 
was called, and built the first ice-house, and laid down 
a little circular railway with a little locomotive to run 
upon it. Mr. Smith served two terms as associate 
judge of the county, and was the first man in the 
place to open a real estate agency, which he did in 
1827. Some years before his death he bought a 
farm at Mount Jackson, which now forms part of the 
grounds of the Insane Asylum, and there he died in 
April, 1826, at the age of fifty-two. He was rather 
an eccentric man, but notoriou.sly liberal to the poor. 



ORGANIZATION OF COUNTY AND ERECTION OF TOWNSHIPS. 



37 



He and Governor Ray wore " cues" in the old Revo- 
lutionary fashion. The Governor discarded his in 
his old age, but Mr. Smith held to his as tenaciously 
as a Chinaman. Some catarrhal affection, probably, 
brought a fit of sneezing on him nearly every morn- 
ing early after he had dressed and got out of doors, 
and that sonorous sound could be heard by all the 
neighbors as far and as plainly and about as early as 
the morning song of his roosters. 

Nathaniel Bolton was a book-binder by trade. He 
became much better known to the Indianapolis people 
than Mr. Smith. He continued to edit the Gazette 
after the other had sold out his interest, when he had 
a larger constituency to speak for, and his wife, Sarah 
T. Barrett, of Madison, the earliest and most gifted 
and conspicuous of the poetesses of the State, helped 
his reputation by the abundance of her own. He 
was made consul at Geneva, Switzerland, in 1853, 
whence his wife wrote many letters to the Journal, 
then under the direction of an old friend, Mr. Sul- 
grove. In May, 1857, he came back in consequence 
of failing health, and died in a few months. For 
several years after he had sold his interest in the 
Gazette, he and his wife kept a country tavern on the 
farm that BIr. Smith lived on before his death at 
Mount Jackson. Mrs. Bolton is now living in a 
pleasant house in the country about three miles 
southeast of the city, and still frequently publishes 
fugitive verses on passing occurrences that interest 
her, especially the death of old friends, marked with 
all the fertility of fancy and grace of style of her 
earlier poems. 

The mechanical processes of the first paper were 
primitive enough. The ink was partly compounded 
of tar, and the press-work was slow and hard. Com- 
position rollers were unknown till the secret of 
making them was brought here just ten years later 
by the late David V. Culley, for many years presi- 
dent of the City Council. There were no mails at 
all at first, and when a post-route was established 
soon afterwards its deliveries were so irregular that 
the editors had to apologize once for the deficiency of 
matter by saying that the failure of the mails had 
left them without any news from abroad or any suit- 
able material. Several post-routes were opened during 



the spring, in addition to one to White Water, opened 
a few weeks after the paper appeared first, but they 
came too late to relievo the urgent necessity of the 
winter and spring. The incessant and heavy rains 
greatly obstructed the main mail-route, and com- 
pelled the entire suspension of the paper from the 
3d of April to the 4th of May by catching the editors 
away from home and keeping the streams too deep to 
be forded. The first number appeared on the 28th 
of January, the second on the 11th of February, the 
third on the 25th, the fourth March 6th, the fifth on 
the 18th, the sixth April 3d, the seventh May 4th. 
The growth and changes of the Gazette will be 
noticed particularly in the sketch of the " Press." 

The first mail came very closely after the first paper. 
For nearly two years such correspondence as had been 
maintained between the new settlement and the older 
ones east and south on the White Water and the Ohio, 
had been carried on by the hands of neighbors and 
occasional travelers. On the 30th of January, 1822, 
a meeting of citizens was held at the "Eagle Tavern" 
(Hawkins') to devise means to maintain a private 
mail. The hope of a government mail does not seem 
to have been strong enough to be cultivated. Aaron 
Drake was selected for the duty of private postmaster 
and mail-carrier. He notified the postmasters all 
around of the arrangement that had been made, and 
asked them to forward all letters for Indianapolis to 
Connersville, where he would get them. " He re- 
turned from his first trip," says an early sketch of the 
city, " shortly after nightfall, and the loud blasts of his 
horn were heard far through the woods, and the whole 
people turned out in the bright moonlight to greet 
him and hear the news." This effort aroused the 
general government, and President Monroe appointed 
Samuel Henderson first postmaster in February, 1822. 
He opened the ofiice the first week in March. A his- 
tory of the ofiBce will be found in its proper place, and 
nothing more need be said of it here, except that the 
first list of letters awaiting delivery contained five 
names, one of them that of Mallory, the colored barber, 
and first barber in the place. For some years, it is 
hard to say just how long, the mails were carried on 
horseback, subsequently they were taken in stage- 
coaches, and Indianapolis became nearly as conspic- 



38 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



uous a stage centre as it is now a railroad centre. 
For many years the J. & P. Vorhees Company had 
large stables and coach-making and repairing shops 
here on the southwest corner of Maryland and Penn- 
sylvania Streets. They were abandoned about 1852, 
when the advancing railroad lines began to absorb 
mails and passengers ; but the music of the " stage- 
horn" was long a pleasant sound in the ears of the old 
settler, for it brought him the principal variation of 
the monotony of a village life, except the regular 
winter sessions of the Legislature. For a short time 
during the administration of Van Buren a mail-route 
or two was run here on horseback in extra quick time, 
and called " express mails." The riders came gal- 
loping along Washington Street, blowing little tin 
horns with a din that delighted the school-boys, and 
for many a week they made night hideous with their 
horns. 

The winter of 1821-22, in spite of the prostration 
and starvation of the preceding summer and fall, was 
pleasantly passed in the main. The settlers becoming 
better acquainted, and frequently rendering each in- 
dispensable neighborly offices in sickness and destitu- 
tion, were naturally well dispo.sed to relieve the lone- 
liness of an unusually severe winter in an impassable 
forest with such social entertainments as were within 
reach, so they kept up an almost unbroken round 
of quilting and dancing parties and other modes 
of killing time when there was nothing to do to 
enable them to make a better use of it. " A mania 
for marrying took possession of the young people," 
says the early sketch, " and there was hardly a single 
bachelor left in the place." The snow was very deep, 
and the river frozen so hard that large logs were 
hauled across it on heavy " ox-sleds." On the 25th 
of February the Gazette said that a good deal of 
improvement had been going on. Forty residences 
and several work-shops had been built, a grist-mill 
and two saw-mills were in operation, and more were 
in progress near the place. There were thirteen car- 
penters, four cabinet-makers, eight blacksmiths, four 
shoemakers, two tailors, one hatter, two tanners, one 
saddler, one cooper, four bricklayers, two merchants, 
three grocers, four doctors, three lawyers, one preacher, 
one teacher, seven tavern-keepers. These alone would 



indicate a population of about three hundred. But 
these were not alone : there were probably enough 
more adult males to complete a roll of one hundred, 
and show a population of five hundred. 

The first election was coming close as the pro- 
tracted winter began to loosen its grip on the iron 
ground and let the spring blossoms out to the sun- 
light. Candidates were pretty nearly as numerous as 
voters. There were two parties, but not separated by 
national party divisions. This was the " era of good 
feeling" in national politics. The old " Federal" and 
"Republican" differences were growing dim and the 
names unfamiliar. The division in the first election 
in Indianapolis was geographical. " White Water" 
and " Kentucky" were the names of might, and the 
voters took sides according to the direction they had 
traveled to get here. Just what sort of a compromise 
was made by the settlers who came in the first place 
from Kentucky, and resided for a while in the White 
Water before moving to the New Purchase, there is 
no indication to direct. The " White Water" leader 
was James M. Ray, the " Kentucky" chief Morris 
Morris, father of Gen. Thomas A. Morris, the real 
general and victor in the first campaign in West Vir- 
ginia. The candidates for associate judges — there 
were two — were Robert Patterson, James Mcllvaine, 
James Page, Eliakim Harding, John Smock, and 
Rev. John McClung. The candidates for clerk were 
James M. Ray, Milo R. Davis, Morris Morris, Thomas 
Anderson, and John W. Redding. For recorder there 
were Alexander Ralston, James Linton, Joseph C. 
Reed, Aaron Drake, John Givan, John Hawkins, 
William Vandegrift, and William Townsend. No 
record is left of the candidates for the three county 
commissionerships, but it is said there were about 
fifteen of them. There were no caucuses or conven- 
tions or primaries, and no obstruction to the ambition 
of any man that wanted to be a candidate. The poll 
in the town showed two hundred and twenty-four 
votes, a little more than one hundred probably being 
residents on the donation. In the county three hun- 
dred and thirty-six votes were cast, including a good 
part of all the counties around it. James Mcllvaine 
and Eliakim Harding were elected associate judges ; 
James M. Ray, clerk; Joseph C. Reed, recorder; 



ORGANIZATION OF COUNTY AND ERECTION OF TOWNSHIPS. 



39 



and John McCormick, John T. Osborn, and William 
McCartney, county commissioners. James M. Ray 
received two hundred and seventeen votes, which was 
the highest vote for any candidate. 

The newly-elected county commissioners qualified 
and held their first session on the 15th of April, in 
the house at the corner of Ohio and Meridian Streets. 
On the next day they divided the county, em- 
bracing the very large area already described, into 
Fall Creek, Anderson, White River. Delaware, Law- 
rence, Washington, Pike, Warren, Centre, Wayne, 
Franklin, Perry, and Decatur townships. The first 
four were in the territory afterwards formed into 
other counties. The following are the formally de- 
clared boundaries of the townships as first consti- 
tuted, which have composed the county ever since, 
with a very few slight changes. Only the "corners" 
are given, as they will enable an}' one to follow the 
lines readily : 

" Lawrence" township, in the northeast corner of 
the county, was given the following corners : The 
northeast corner of Section 15, Town 17 north of 
Range 5 east, is the northeast corner of the town- 
ship ; the southeast corner of Section 15, Town 16 
north of Range 5 east, is the southeast corner ; the 
southwest corner of Section 15, Town 16 north of 
Range 4 east, is the southwest corner ; and the 
northwest corner of Section 16, Town 17 north of 
Range 4 east, the northwest corner. The township 
contains forty-nine sections, seven each way. 

" Washington" township, immediately north of 
Centre, has the following corners : Od the northeast, 
northeast corner of Section 17, Town 17 north of 
Range 4 east ; on the southeast, the southeast corner 
of Section 16, Town 16 north of Range 4 east; on 
the southwest, the southwest corner of Section 15, 
Town 16 north of Range 3 east; and the northwest, 
the northwest corner of Section 16, Town 17 north 
of Range 3 east. This township contains forty-nine 
sections, seven each way, like Lawrence. Three sec- 
tions were subsequently taken from Pike, in Town 16 
north of Range 3 east, so that the southwest corner 
of Section 16, Town 17 north of Range 3 east, is the 
southwest corner of the township. 

" Pike" township, in the northwest corner of the 



county, is now somewhat different from the bounds 
set by the commissioners at this session. The four 
corners as set by them at this time are as follows : 
The northeast is the northeast corner of Section 17, 
Town 17 north of Range 3 east ; the southeast is 
the southeast corner of Section 16, Town 16 north 
of Range 3 east ; the southwest is the southwest 
corner of Section 16, Town 16 north of Range 2 
east; the northwest is the northwest corner of the 
county. The east and west boundaries were both 
changed after this, so that the southeast corner is 
the southeast corner of Section 17, Town 16 north 
of Range 3 east, giving to Washington three sec- 
tions ; and on the west the bounds of the county 
were changed, giving the four east halves of sections 
to Pike, thus making the area forty-four sections, 
seven miles north and south, six miles on the south 
side and six and a half on the north side. 

'• Warren" township, on the east of Centre, was 
described with the following corners : The northeast, 
the northeast corner of Section 22, Town 16 north 
of Range 5 east ; the southeast, the southeast corner 
of Section 22, Town 15 north of Range 5 east ; the 
southwest, the southwest corner of Section 22, Town 
15 north of Range 4 east; the northwest, the north- 
west corner of Section 22, Town 16 north of Range 
4 east. The township contains forty-nine sections, 
seven sections each way, being almost exactly square, 
and has never been changed. 

" Centre township shall consist of the territory 

I included within the following bounds, to wit : Be- 
ginning at the northeast corner of Section 21, Town 

i 16, Range 4 ; thence south on the section line to the 
southeast corner of Section 21, Town 15, Range 4 ; 

I thence west to the southwest corner of Section 22, 
Town 15, Range 3; thence north on the section line 
to the northwest corner of Section 22, Town 16, 
Range 3; thence east on the section line to the 
place of beginning." The township contains forty- 
two sections, seven miles north and south, six east and 
west, and has never been altered. 

" Wayne" township had and still has the follow- 
ing corners, having remained unchanged : The north- 
east, the northeast corner of Section 21, Town 16 
north of Range 3 east ; the southeast, the southeast 



40 



HISTOKY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



corner of Section 21, Town 15 north of Range 3 
east ; the southwest, the southwest corner of Section 
21, Town 15 north of Range 2 east; the northwest, 
the northwest corner of Section 21, Town 16 north 
of Range 2 east. The township contains forty-nine 
sections, being of the same shape and size as 
Warren. 

" Franklin" township is of the same size and 
shape as Centre, but has its greatest extension east 
and west. The corners are as follows : The north- 
east, the northeast corner of Section 27, Town 15 
north of Range 5 east ; the southeast, the southeast 
corner of the county ; the southwest, the southwest 
corner of Section 22, Town 14 north of Range 4 
east ; the northwest, the northwest corner of Sec- 
tion 27, Town 15 north of Range 4 east. This 
township also has never been changed. 

" Decatur" and " Perry" townships were at first 
given bounds which made them parallelograms, but 
they have since been so changed that the river forms 
a boundary line between them. The four corners of 
" Perry" township were as follows : The northeast, 
the northeast corner of Section 28, Town 15 north 
of Range 4 east ; the southeast, the southeast corner 
of Section 21, Town 14 north of Range 4 east ; the 
southwest, the southwest corner of Section 22, Town 
14 north of Range 3 east ; the northwest, the north- 
west corner of Section 27, Town 15 north of Range 
3 east. This made an area of forty-two sections, the 
same shape and size as Franklin, seven miles east and 
west, six north and south. The township now, how- 
ever, has about forty-five sections, making the river 
the west boundary line. 

" Decatur" township had the following corners : 
The northeast, the northeast corner of Section 28, 
Town 15 north of Range 3 east; the southeast, the 
southeast corner of Section 21, Town 14 north of 
Range 3 east ; the southwest, the southwest corner 
of the county ; the northwest, the northwest corner of 
Section 27, Town 15 north of Range 2 east. This 
gave the township thirty-six sections, while it contains 
now but about thirty-three sections. 

" On account of lack of population" certain of 
the townships were, until other regulations were 
made, to be united and to be considered as one 



township. They were Centre and Warren, to be 
called " Centre- Warren" ; Pike and Wayne, " Pike- 
Wayne" ; Washington and Lawrence, " Washington- 
Lawrence" ; Decatur, Perry, and Franklin, all three 
to be known as " Decatur-Perry-Franklin" township. 
Each combination was assigned two justices except 
Centre- Warren, which was given three. 

Some of them were soon separated, the first being 
Decatur township, which was disunited on the 12th 
of August, 1823. The next separation was of Pike 
township from Wayne, on the 10th of May, 1824, a 
petition to that end having been presented by some 
of tlie citizens of the J,ownship ; and the commission- 
ers considering the population sufficient to warrant the 
order, Warren and Centre townships were separated 
by an order of the Board, May 1, 1826. 

Washington and Lawrence were separated Oct. 6, 

1826. Franklin and Perry were separated Sept. 3, 

1827, on a petition presented by the people of that 
township. 

On March 3, 1828, three sections in Pike town- 
ship, 3, 9, and 10, were attached to Washington. 

On the next day after the townships were formed 
the County Board ordered the election of " magis- 
trates" in all the townships, assigning two to the 
joint town.ships of Washington and Lawrence, two 
to Pike and Wayne, two to Decatur, Perry, and 

i Franklin, and three to " Centre- Warren," as it is 

I 

j always written in the records. The 11th of May 

j was set for the election. In Centre-Warren, Obed 

Foote, Wilkes Reagan, and Lismund Basye were 

{ elected, and their election contested by Moses Cox. 

The case was heard by the Board at a special session 

j on the 16th of May, on a summons by the sheriff, 

[ with whom notice of contest had been filed. Some 

1 preliminary argument and ruling were made, and the 

I next day the Board decided that the election should 

'■ be set aside and held as null and void." A second 

election was ordered on the 25th of May, eight days 

j later, which was duly held, and the same men re- 

I elected. That election was not disturbed. 

j At the same May session of 1822 the first consta- 

I bles were appointed : for Washington and Law- 

! rence, William Cris and John Small ; for Pike and 

I Wayne, Joel A. Crane and Charles Eckard ; for 



ERECTION OF PUBLIC BUILDINGS. 



41 



Centre- Warren, Israel Harding, Joseph Duval, 
Francis Davis, George Harlan, William Phillips, 
Caleb Reynolds, Daniel Lakin, Lewis Ogle, Samuel 
Roberts, Joseph Catterlin, Henry Cline, Joshua 
Glover, and Patrick Kerr, — a larger force than the 
two townships have ever had since. 

At the April session, on the evening of the 17th, 
a county seal was adopted, thus described: " A star 
in the centre, with the letters ' M. C. C around the 
same, with inverted carved stripes tending to the 
centre of the star, and ' Marion County Seal' written 
thereon." On the 14th of May this seal was 
changed for the present one, thus officially described : 
" The words ' Marion County Seal, Indiana,' around 
the outside, with a pair of scales in the centre em- 
blematical of justice, under which is a plow and 
sheaf of wheat in representation of agriculture." 
The first roads opened or ordered in the county were 
considered upon the petition of William Townsend 
and others, and " viewed" by Joel Wright, John 
Smock, and Zadoc Smith for the one running " to 
the Mills at the Falls of Fall Creek,"— the old Pen- 
dleton road ; and by William D. Rooker, Robert 
Brenton, and George Norwood for the other, running 
from " the north end of Pennsylvania Street to 
Strawtown," — the old Noblesville road. The next 
road was along the line of the present National road, 
upon petition of Eliakim Harding ; the fourth, a road 
to McCormick's Mills, on White River, upon peti- 
tion of John McCormick ; the fifth, the old Moores- 
ville road, upon petition of Demas L. McFarland. 
These were all in May, 1822. 

On the 17th, continuing the same session, the 
County Board established the following tolls " on the 
ferry on White River opposite Indianapolis," which 
was established by an act of the preceding Legislature : 

" For each wagon and four horses or oxen $0.62i 

" wagon and two horses or oxen 37i 

" wagon (small) and one horse or ox 31i 

'* extra horse or ox 12i 

" man or woman and horse 1-i 

" head of neat cattle 03 

" head of swine 02 

" head of sheep 02 

" footman OBJ." 

At the same session of the Board the following 
" tavern rates" were established : 



" Each half-pint of whiskey S0.12J 

Each half-pint of imported nun, brandy, gin, or 

wine 25 

Each quart of cider or beer 12A 

Each quart of porter, cider wine, or cider oil 25 

Each half-pint of peach brandy, cordial, country 

gin, or apple brandy ISjf 

Each meal 25 

Each night's lodging 12i 

Esieh gallon of corn or oats 12i 

Each horse to hay, per night 25." 

The tax-payers of to-day will be interested in the 
modes and rates of taxation fixed by the County 
Board in the first year of the county's organization. 

At a session of the Board held on the 14th ot 
May, 1822, the following rates were established for 
taxation : 

" For every horse, mare, gelding, mule, or ass over 

three years old $0.37^ 

For stallions, once (their rate for the season) 

For taverns, each 10.00 

For every ferry 6.00 

For every SlOO of. the appraised valuation of town 

lots 50 

For each and every pleasure carriage of two wheels... 1.00 

For each pleasure carriage of four wheels 1.25 

For every silver w.atch 25 

For every gold watch 50 

For every head of work-oxen over three years old and 

upwards, per head 25 

On each male person over the age of twenty-one years.. .50 

" Provided, That persons over the age of fifty years and not 
freeholders, and such as are not able from bodily disability to 
follow any useful occupation, . . . and all idiots and paupers 
shall be exempt from said last-named tax." 

At the same session in which the tax rates were 
settled an order was made for the erection of the 
first jail. The sherifiF, Hervey Bates, was appointed 
county agent to receive bids. The specifications 
required as follows : 

" It is to be built fourteen feet in the inside, two 
stories high, of six and a half feet between floors, 
to be of hewed logs twelve inches thick and at 
least twelve inches wide, with two rounds of oak 
or walnut logs to be under ground;" and "the 
second floor and the side logs to be of the same 
size of walnut, oak, ash, beech, or sugar-tree;" 
and " the third or upper floor to be of logs six 
inches thick and at least one foot wide." The 
roof was to be of jointed shingles. There was to 
be a window in the lower story or dungeon twelve 
inches square. The grate-bars for it were to be 



42 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



one inch and a quarter in thickness, and there 
was a window two feet by six inches in the second 
story, opposite the door by which the jail was en- 
tered. This door was four feet by two, of two 
thicknesses of two-inch oak plank, with a heavy 
stock-look between, and also heavy strap hinges. 
There was to be a ladder leading up on the out- 
side to the door in the second story, and another 
door, a trap two feet square, in the floor of the 
second story, leading down into the lower story, 
which was to be fastened with a hasp and pad- 
lock." 

The contract was awarded to Noah Leaverton, 
some time in Mayor June, 1822, by Hervey Bates, 
and was submitted to the commissioners for in- 
spection, and accepted on August 12th. 

" The Board approve, adopt, and permanently 
establish the building erected of hewed logs . . . 
on the Court-House Square, near the corner of 
Market and Delaware Streets, in Indianapolis, as 
the county jail." It cost three hundred and twelve 
dollars. (Pages 27, 28, 29, Commissioners' Record.) 

The jail looked a good deal like a small, re- 
spectable residence, bating the suggestive quality of 
the heavy iron gratings. In the summer of 1833 a 
negro came to the town wearing a black cap with 
a red leather band around it, and leading sometimes, 
sometimes riding, a buffalo. He made a show of 
it on the streets occasionally, and was followed by 
the usual crowd of curious boys, who gave him a 
name that another man has lately made famous, 
" Buffalo Bill." He was arrested for some offense, 
larceny probably, and put in jail. That night he 
set it on fire to make his escape, and came near 
being burned in it. The hole in the ground where 
the two lower courses of logs had lain was visible 
for twenty years. Jeremiah Johnson was the first 
jailer. It was succeeded by a brick jail on the 
east side of the Court-House Square, one end abut- 
ting directly upon Alabama Street. In this the 
jailer was provided with rooms for residence. In 
1845 a hewed-log addition was made on the north 
and used for the confinement of the worst pris- 
oners. It was built of logs hewed to one foot square, 
and laid in three courses, the first horizontal, the 



one outside of it and bolted to it perpendicular or 
oblique, and the third, exterior to that, horizontal. 
An exterior casing of the same kind, consisting of 
one vertipal and one horizontal course of hewed 
logs, was put round the first jail some time after 
it was built. 

In 1852 the present jail, in the east corner of 
the Court-House Square, was begun and com- 
pleted in 1854, when the old jail was torn away. 
Several additions have been made to the present one, 
at an aggregate cost of near one hundred thousand 
dollars, but the increase of crime in a city so con- 
venient to scoundrels, from its facilities for escape, 
and so largely made up at all times of transient resi- 
dents, has constantly exceeded the county's ability to 
take adequate care of the criminals. Escapes have 
not been very infrequent, and grand juries, whenever 
they make an examination, are pretty sure to report 
insuflScient room. 

In this connection may be noticed more appro- 
priately than in the detached accounts following a 
chronological order, the crimes which have met the 
extreme penalty of the law in the present jail, as well 
as the first offenses in the history of the settlement. 
Until within the last decade no sentence of death had 
ever been passed upon any murderer in Marion 
County. Then William Cluck was convicted of the 
murder of his wife and sentenced to be hung. The 
sheriff had the gallows built and in place in the jail- 
yard, but a day or two before that set for the execution 
the murderer got poison and killed himself In the fall 
of 186!-, Mrs. Nancy E. Clem, William J. Abrams, 
and Silas W^. Hartman, Mrs. Clem's brother, were 
indicted for the murder of Jacob Young and his wife, 
— a horrible affair, in which the body of Mrs. Young 
was partially burned after she had been shot through 
the head, — known as the " Cold Spring" murder, and 
the woman was convicted of murder in the second 
degree and sentenced to imprisonment for life early 
in March, 1869. Just one week afterwards her 
brother cut his throat in his cell to escape an inevita- 
ble death by the halter. These were the nearest 
approaches made to the death penalty in this county 
till its first actual infliction in January, 1879. The 
frequent escape of murderers whose crimes deserved 



ERECTION OF PUBLIC BUILDINGS. 



43 



death had stirred a strong feeling into public expres- 
sion against the wealcness of the law as a protection 
of the community, and the almost certain escape of 
every offender, whatever his crime, if he could pay 
well for a defense, had strengthened this feeling. It 
appeared in the editorials and communications of the 
papers, in allusions in public speeches and sermons, 
in social conversation, and, more emphatic than all, in 
frequent lynchings all about in the State. Mrs. Clem, 
though twice convicted, finally worried the law by 
appeals and change of venue and postponement till 
she was discharged, and this more than any other one 
thing had set the community hard against any lenity 
to the next murderer. 

In November, 1878, John Achey was convicted of 
the murder, by shooting, of George Leggett, a partner 
in a gambling operation, and sentenced to death on 
the 29th of January, 1879.. On the 13th of Decem- 
ber, 1878, William Merrick, a livery-stable keeper on 
South Street, was convicted of the murder of his 
wife. She had been a school-teacher, and saved a 
considerable sum of money. While paying her his 
addresses he borrowed all her money, seduced her, 
and only after much solicitation married her. Within 
a day or two of her confinement he took her out 
riding after dusk, gave her strychnine in a glass of 
beer, which caused premature child-birth in the 
agonies of death, and then drove with the dead 
bodies to a small wood near the Morris Street bridge 
over Eagle Creek, where he dug a shallow hole on 
the creek bank, put the bodies naked in it, and 
covered them with logs. He burned in his stable the 
clothing he took from his wife's corpse in the dark- 
ness of midnight and the woods, and no discovery 
was made for several days. Then a boy going along 
the creek found the bodies, the wife was identified by 
some physical marks still discernible through the de- 
composition, and very soon after the husband was 
arrested. The horrible brutality of the crime, the 
cool, callous, calculating cruelty in every stage of it, 
the beastliness of the burial, all provoked so hot an 
exasperation of popular feeling that for the first time 
there were serious threats of lynching. He was 
sentenced to be hung at the same time Achey was, 
January 29th. Some attempts were made to obtain a 



commutation for Achey, whose provocation had been 
great, and would have saved him a death sentence in 
any other condition of feeling of the community, but 
nothing was done for Merrick. They were hung on 
the same gallows at the same instant, Merrick sullen, 
dogged, and silent to the last, though indicating a 
desire to speak at the moment the drop fell. Louis 
Guetig was convicted the same year of the murder of 
Miss McGlue, a waiter in the hotel kept by his uncle 
whom he had been courting, but who had discarded 
him. He shot her in the courtyard of the hotel 
while imploring him not to kill her, and imperiled 
several other girls who were present, and was sen- 
tenced to be hung with Achey and Merrick ; but his 
counsel obtained on appeal a reversal of some trivial 
instruction of the court below, and a second trial fol- 
lowed, with a second conviction and death sentence, 
and he was hung on Sept. 19, 1879, the anniversary 
of the murder. These are the only death sentences 
ever passed or inflicted in Marion County, except that 
of a colored man named Greenly for murdering his 
sweetheart. He was sentenced, but the Governor 
commuted his punishment to life imprisonment. 

The first grand jury of the county returned twenty- 
two indictments by Joseph C. Reed, the first recorder 
and school-teacher, of which six wore non pressed. 
They were pretty much all, except one assault and 
battery, for selling liquor without a license, a class of 
offenses which has always been a strong one in In- 
dianapolis and is yet. The first sufferer of thousands 
of lawle.ss liquor dealers through a course of two gener- 
ations was John Wyant. So many indictments at the 
first term of court in so small a settlement, with no 
roads and no navigable streams, and no neighbors but 
Indians, would indicate the presence of a considerable 
portion of the lawless element that always mixes 
itself up with the real pioneer and improving element, 
though there was much less of it and of a less dan- 
gerous quality than that appearing on the present fron- 
tiers of civilization. The first felony appears, from 
Mr. Nowland's recollection, to have been a burglary 
committed by an old man named Redman, and Warner 
his son-in-law, on the grocery-store of the late Jacob 
Landis in 1824. Col. Russell was the sheriff, and a 
search-warrant enabled him to find the missing goods 



44 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



or most of them. Warner's wife attempted to con- 
ceal them under her clothing, but was detected. The 
offenders were sent to the penitentiary for several 
years. The first murder was committed long after- 
wards in 1833, and will be noticed particularly in its 
place. 

The Court-House Square, like all the rest of the 
town, was a dense wood when the first jail was put 
there, and a little later when the first steps for a 
court-house were taken, on the representations of 
James Blake, the county commissioners made an 
order that in clearing the square two hundred trees 
(sugars or maples it was understood) should be spared 
for a grove. No special direction having been given 
the contractors they left the largest trees, which, 
when the surrounding protection of forest had been 
cut away, had to bear the brunt of every wind that 
blew, and were soon so greatly damaged that they 
were cut down and cleared away entirely. The con- 
tractors for clearing were Earl Pierce and Samuel 
Hyde, for fifty-nine dollars. Many years after an at- 
tempt was piade to reproduce a little shade by a grove 
of suitable trees, but the saplings were killed by 
drought or carelessness, mischievous boys or breachy 
cattle. There has never been any shade worth speak- 
ing of in the Court-House Square since the primeval 
forest was cut away in 1822. With the progress of 
the present court-house the square has been filled 
from a shallow depression to a very handsome eleva- 
tion, and some fine trees would become both. 

On Thursday, the 15th of August, 1822, as ap- 
pears from the " Commissioners' Record" (page 45), 
the County Board ordered the clerk to advertise in 
the Indianapolis Gazette for bids for a court-house, 
to be built upon plans furnished by John E. Baker 
and James Paxton. The specifications in brief were : 

The building was to front on Washington Street, 
to be forty-five by sixty feet, and ninety-four feet 
high from the ground. It was to be of brick, and 
two stories high. The foundation was to be of stone, 
eighteen inches in the ground and three feet and a 
half out of the ground, and three feet thick. The 
walls of the lower story were to be twenty-seven 
inches thick, and of the second story twenty-two 
inches. There was to be a cupola in the centre 



twenty-two and a half feet high, on top of it a dome 
five feet high, then a shaft twelve feet, and finally 
an iron spire with a gilt ball and vane. On the first 
floor were a court-room forty and a half feet square, 
and another small room and a hall, each thirteen feet 
three inches square. In the second story there were 
to be a court-room forty-one feet three inches by 
twenty-five feet, two rooms sixteen feet square, the 
hall and a room thirteen feet six inches square, and 
an entry eight and a half feet wide. The first story 
was fifteen and a half feet, the second fifteen feet. 
There was a " Doric cornice gutter on the roof, and 
four tin conductors with capitals." The roof was 
to be of poplar shingles, jointed, five inches to the 
weather. 

At a special meeting held on the 3d of September, 
1822, the commissioners examined bids for building 
the house, and awarded the contract to John E. 
Baker and James Paxton for thirteen thousand nine 
hundred and ninety-six dollars. Operations were to 
commence before the 1st day of April, 1823, and the 
building to be completed in three years. The build- 
ing was inspected by the commissioners, who were still 
in office, and this was their last official act. It was 
on the 7th day of January, 1825. Only a little 
painting and other work remained uncompleted. 
(Commissioners' Record, pages 45, 46, 47, and 54.) 

Until the completion of the court-house court was 
held, as the law required, at the residence of Gen. 
John Carr, a double log cabin on Delaware Street, 
about opposite the entrance to the court-house. The 
first session was held here on the 26th of September, 
1822, with Judge William W. Wick presiding, the 
newly-qualified associates, Mcllvaine and Harding, 
assisting, James M. Ray as clerk, and Hervey Bates 
as sheriff. After the court was organized it ad- 
journed to Crumbaugh's house, west of the line of 
the future canal. Calvin Fletcher was made the 
first prosecutor, continuing for three terms, and fol- 
lowed by Harvey Gregg, Hiram Brown, William 
Quarles, Philip Sweetser, James Morrison, Hugh 
O'Neal, Governor Wallace, Governor Hammond, 
and others more or less eminent in the profession. 
There were thirteen civil causes on the docket, and 
twenty-two indictments found, of which, as already 



ERECTION OF PUBLIC BUILDINGS. 



45 



related, six were non prossed. Eleven lawyers were 
present, five of them being residents. The session 
lasted three days, naturalized an Irishman, Richard 
Good, licensed John Hawkins to sell liquor, indicted 
a dozen or more for selling without a license, and 
established " prison bounds" for the unfortunates 
airested and confined for debt, that relic of barbarism 
being still in mischievously vigorous condition here. 
The first civil case was Daniel Bowman vs. Meridy 
Edwards ; the first criminal case, State vs. John 
Wyant, for violation of license laws. The second 
session was opened May 5, 1823, at Carr's, and ad- 
journed to Henderson's tavern, on the site of the 
" New York Store." Here appeared the first divorce 
ease, Elias Stallcup vs. Ruth Stallcup. The third 
session was opened at Carr's, as usual, Nov. 3, 1823, 
but adjourned to Harvey Gregg's house. The fourth, 
April 12, 1824, adjourned from Carr's to John John- 
son's, and the fifth met at Carr's, Oct. 11, 1824, and 
adjourned to the partially completed court-house, and 
never afterwards left it till it was torn down in 1870 
to make room for the present one. 

This old court-house was practically the only pub- 
lic building in the town from 1825 to 1835. The 
Legislature made a State-House of it for three 
months every winter. The Federal Court, the Su- 
preme Court, the County Court, and the County 
Board all met and did business there. More than 
this, after the completion of the State-House, and 
the removal of that portion of public business to its 
own quarters, the old court-house became the City 
Hall, the place of conventions, the ready resort of 
every gathering that could not go anywhere else and 
could pay for lights there. The county's fuel usually 
warmed all that got iu. whether public charity or 
private show. Joseph G. Marshall and James Whit- 
comb, two of the ablest men in the United States in 
the days of the giants, held their debate there when 
opposing candidates for Governor in 1843. The 
eccentric wandering preacher, Lorenzo Dow, preached 
there in 1827. Professor Bronson gave his first lec- 
tures on " Elocution" there. Col. Lehmanowski lec- 
tured there on " Napoleon's Wars." Preachers " out- 
side of any healthy organization," as the Southern 
senators said of Seward and Sumner, who could not 



get the " Old Seminary," could always get the court- 
house. " Nigger minstrels" gave the first of their 
performances there. A ventriloquist gave a show 
there. John Kelly played the fiddle there. Wil- 
liam S. Unthank lectured there on electro-magnetism 
as a motive-power more than thirty years ago. County 
conventions and city meetings assembled there. But 
a year or two before it was torn down the citizens 
held a meeting there to take measures to get the 
Agricultural College, for which Congress had made 
provision in all the States, located here, against the 
competition of Lafayette and John Purdue. A Mr. 
Keeley in 1844 made experiments in mesmerism 
there, and set half the fools in town mesmerizing the 
other half. Few buildings in a new country, or any 
country, have had a greater variety of experiences in 
as short a life. It was State-House, court-house, oc- 
casional church, convention hall, lecture-room, con- 
cert-room, show-room, ball-room in forty-five years. 

During the time the present court-house was in 
course of erection, from May, 1870, to July, 1876, 
the courts were held in a large, cheap two-story 
brick building at the west gate, near where the west 
entrances from the street now are. In front, and to 
the east a few feet, were the old oflBces of the county, 
the clerk and treasurer, recorder and auditor, the 
last two in the second story, the others on the ground- 
floor. In 1827 the Legislature appropriated five 
hundred dollars to build a little double-room, one- 
story brick house at the west entrance of the Court- 
House Square, for the clerk of the Supreme Court, 
then and for many years afterwards Henry P. Coburn, 
one of the foremost of the old citizens in all good 
work. He was one of the first trustees of the town 
government, one of the first trustees of the Old 
Seminary, and one of the first three trustees of the 
city schools, a position in which he contributed as 
largely as any man to their wise and beneficent estab- 
lishment. He was always put in for gratuitous pub- 
lic services, and never made any difference in the 
faithfulness and efficiency of his discharge of them. 
He was a graduate of Harvard and a college-mate 
with Edward Everett, came to this place with the State 
government in 1824, was the father of Gen. John 
Coburn and Henry, of the firm of Coburn & Jones, 



46 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



and died July 20, 1854, at the age of sixty-four. 
This little building was torn down in 1855, and the 
clerk's office was removed to the State-House. The 
present court-house was completed in six years from 
the removal of the old one, at a cost of one million 
four hundred and twenty-two thousand three hundred 
and seventy-one dollars and seventy-nine cents, a lit- 
tle more than one hundred times as much as the old 
house of 1823-25 cost. Costly as it was, and re- 
cently as it has been completed, it is said to show 
signs of dilapidation. The State is once more 
making a eapitol of the county's house while wait- 
ing for its own building, as it did from 1825 to 
1835, but it had a right to the first one, for it paid 
for it and used it as an owner. It has no right to 
this one, and must pay as a tenant. The city has 
found quarters for its offices in the same building, 
after moving about from the old Marion Engine house 
on the Circle to any convenient rooms it could get till 
it found something like a permanent location in the 
Glenn Block, and another later where the Mfenner- 
chor Hall is. It will stay now where it is till it gets 
a hall of its own. The only other buildiag ever 
erected on the Court-House Square was a large tem- 
porary frame, built by the political parties for cam- 
paign meetings in 1864 on the southeast corner of 
the square. It remained for some time after its 
special use was completed, and was made a sort of 
public hall. 

Following the incidents of the organization of the 
first court and the occupancy of the Court-House 
Square has carried this narrative beyond the order of 
time, and it may now return to the further action of 
the first ses.sion of the County Board. On the 16th 
of April the commissioners, under an act of the 
Legislature, appointed Daniel Yandes county treas- 
urer, to serve for one year, or till the next February 
session, which was the regular time of appointment. 
On the 13th of November, 1822, he made his first 
report, and it will be found interesting at this day, 
when the revenues and expenses of the county are 
equal to those of the State at that time : 

" Daniel Tandes, County Treasurer, Dr. 

To amount of receipts up to this date, for store 
licenses, tavern licenses, and taxes on certificates 
and sales and writs $169,934 



To certified amount of county revenue assessed for 

1822 726.79 

To the balance in your favor on settlement this day.... 79. Hi 

S975.84 

Treasurer, Cn. 

By payment to grand jurors to this date S2.25 

'* to county commissioners .36.00 

" to listing, appraisers, etc 70.50 

*' to prosecuting attorney 15.25 

" to expenses of the courts and juries 40.50 

" to returning judges of elections 9.50 

" to building county jail account 140.50 

" to work on Court-House Square 59.00 

" to viewers and surveyors of roads 8.12J 

" on poor account 5.00 

" on school section accuunt 1.50 

*' for printing 32.87^ 

S421.00 

To treasurer's per cent, on $421.00 at 5 per cent 21.00 

By amount of county revenue yet due from Harris 

Tyner, collector, for the year 1822 490.844 

By amount deducted from revenue by delinquents... 42.S7i 

$975.84" 

Mr. Yandes was reappointed Feb. 10, 1823, to 
serve for one year, and was reappointed annually till 
1829. The following are the dates of his later ap- 
pointments : Feb. 11, 1824, Jan. 3, 1825, Jan. 6, 
1826, Jan. 1, 1827, Jan. 8, 1828. James John- 
son was appointed in 1829. Hervey Bates was 
elected sheriff at the regular State election in August, 
and served till 1824, when Alexander W. Russell 
succeeded him, and was succeeded in 1828 by Jacob 
Landis. Harris Tyner appears from the report of 
Mr. Yandes to have been the first tax collector. 
James Paxton was the first assessor, by appointment 
of the County Board, April 17, 1822. George Smith, 
of the Gazette, was elected coroner at the regular elec- 
tion in August, but seems not to have served, and 
the first in service was Harris Tyner, commissioned 
Sept. 1, 1823. A complete list of county officers 
will be found in a more appropriate connection. The 
purpose here is only to notice the first occupants and 
duties of the officers. 

On the 29th of May two keel-boats came up the 
river, the " Eagle" from the Kanawha, and the 
" Boxer" from Zanesville, the former loaded with fif- 
teen tons of salt, whiskey, tobacco, and dried fruit, the 
latter with thirty-three tons of dry-goods and print- 
ing material for Luke Walpole, one of the earliest of 
the merchants, who then had a store on the Court- 



NOTABLE EVENTS AND INCIDENTS. 



47 



House Square. Stores then and for years after 
kept dry-goods, groceries, hardware, queensware, 
liquor, everything, as old baokwoodsmeo used to say, 
'■ from scythe-snathes to salt fish, hymn-books, calico, 
and tobacco," and a strip of red flannel hung over the 
door was the usual sign. 

On the 17th of June a meeting was held at 
Hawkins' tavern, on Washington Street, to prepare 
for the first celebration of the Fourth of July. It 
took place on the " Military Ground," which then 
covered pretty much all the area north of Washington 
Street and west of West Street, then a country lane, 
to the road along the edge of the bluflP of White River 
and Fall Creek bottoms, now called Blake Street, and 
north to Michigan Street. It was heavily wooded, 
largely with hackberries, whose little black beads 
of fruit with a mere scale of covering, as sweet as 
any bee ever made, were a favorite indulgence of the 
school-boys of a later day. A few of these old hack- 
berries are still standing in what is left of the 
[ " Military Ground" in Military Park. The opening 
ceremony of the occasion was a sermon by Rev. John 
MoCluug, the "New Light" pioneer preacher, on the 
text, from Proverbs, " Righteousness exalteth a nation, 
but sin is a reproach to any people." Rev. Robert 
Brenton " closed with a prayer and benediction." Be- 
tween the two religious extremes there came a brief 
address from Judge Wick on the events and charac- 
ters of the Revolution, closing with the Declaration. 
Squire Obed Foote read Washington's Inaugural 
Address, with remarks appropriate to the subject, 
and John Hawkins read the Farewell Address, with 
suitable reflections. The audience certainly got a 
better quality of literature and sentiment than they 
would have been likely to get from a larger infusion 
of original matter. The more material enjoyment of 
the day was a deer killed the day before by Robert 
Harding on the northwest corner of the donation, 
and " barbecued" in a sufiicient hole dug near a big 
elm. A long table was set under the trees, and a 
better feast made than could be got for less vigorous 
appetites at ten dollars a mouth at a Delmonico's. 
During the dinner the inevitable speeches were made 
by Dr. Samuel G. Mitchell and Maj. John W. Red- 
ding. The festivities were completed by a ball at the 



house of J. R. Crumbaugh, just west of the site of the 
canal near Washington Street. 

The observance of the Fourth of July was kept up 
faithfully for about the third of a century. Then it 
began to fail in interest, and the war put an end to it. 
For much the greater part of this long period the 
celebration was confined to the Sunday-schools almost 
wholly, only a rare parade of mechanics or firemen 
breaking the current. Early in the morning the 
children of each school would meet at the church, 
form a procession with banners, the least in front, and 
march, under the superintendent, to some point near 
the Circle, where all would fall in and make a pro- 
cession of several thousands in the latter days, always 
under the marshalship of James Blake, and go to the 
State-House Square or to some convenient grove, 
where a platform and seats had been provided, and 
there hear a prayer, a reading of the Declaration by 
some young fellow of promising qualities, and an 
oration of the stereotyped kind from a lawyer or 
preacher or some one of a pursuit inclining to oratory. 
Governor Porter achieved his first local distinction by 
a Fourth of July address in the grove on West 
Street, afterwards the site of the Soldiers' Home. It 
was not of the stereotyped, eagle-screaming, sun- 
soaring style, however. He had a Revolutionary 
soldier on the platform, and made as efi'ective a use 
of him, in a less degree, as Webster did of his old 
soldiers in his speech on Bunker Hill. Another 
striking address on a like occasion was that of ex- 
Governor Wallace in the State-House Square the 
year before, not far from the middle of the decade of 
1840 to 1850. The conclusion of the celebration 
was a liberal distribution of " rusks" and water, and 
a benediction that sent all home before the unpleasant 
hour of noon. Since the war the Fourth has been a 
sort of general picnic holiday, or occasion for a fes- 
tive celebration by some one of the many associations 
in the city. For about thirty years it was steadily 
maintained by the Sunday-schools, from 1828 to 
1858. 

On the 20th of June, three days after settling 
upon the mode and means of celebrating the Fourth, 
the citizens held another meeting at the school- 
house, near the present intersection of Illinois 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



Street and Kentucky Avenue, to settle the ar- 
rangements for a permanent school. Trustees were 
appointed, and Mr. and Mrs. Lawrence selected as 
teachers. The school was maintained for some years. 
Mr. Reed, the first teacher in the settlement, did 
not keep his place more than one quarter, — all 
schooling was counted by the quarter (of twelve 
weeks) in those days, — but others succeeded him 
till this permanent arrangement was made in Jun^, 
1822. Who the first trustees were there is no 
record to tell, and no reminiscence recalls them, 
but it would not be a wild guess to say that 
James Blake or James M. Ray or Calvin Fletcher 
was among them. 

The first State election in the New Purchase oc- 
curred on the 5th of August, 1822. William 
Hendricks, uncle of ex- Governor and ex-United 
States Senator Thomas A. Hendricks, received three 
hundred and fifteen out of the three hundred and 
seventeen votes cast for Governor. He served two 
terms in the National Senate after leaving the Ex- 
ecutive chair. This vote would indicate a popula- 
tion of fifteen hundred to sixteen hundred in the 
county with the enlargement then appended to it. 
As above noted, Mr. Bates was elected sheriff at 
this election, and served a full term of two years. 
George Smith, elected coroner, was succeeded in 
1824 by Harris Tyner. In the militia election of 
the 6th of the next month, James Paxton was 
elected colonel of the Fortieth Regiment, Samuel 
Morrow lieutenant-colonel, and Alexander W. Rus- 
sell major. 

The leading events of the three years of the 
first settlement of the city may be summed up 
thus: in 1820 the selection of the capital site, 
birth of first child, cultivation of the " caterpillar 
deadening;" in 1821 the first appointment of justices, 
laying out the town, the epidemic and the famine, 
the first sermon, the first marriage, the first death, 
the first store, the first sale of lots, the first school- 
house and school, — a year of first things ; in 1822 
the organization of the county, designation of town- 
ships, measures for county buildings, first tax levy 
and report, and generally the incidents of the tran- 
sition of a community from an accidental collection 



into an organized body prepared to support and 
take care of itself. 

During the remainder of the year 1822 the 
chief incidents of which any record or recollection 
remains was a camp-meeting, beginning September 
12th, east of the town, presided over by Rev. 
James Scott, sent here by the St. Louis Confer- 
ence in 1821, the first of a long series of this class 
of assemblages held in or about the donation, and 
still kept up, in an improved form with perma- 
nent arrangements, at a convenient point southeast 
of the city, near the little town of Acton, on the 
Cincinnati Railroad. The " Military Ground" was a 
favorite location for some years. Then they were 
held in the northwest corner of the donation, in a 
sugar-grove east of the canal, known as the " Tur- 
key Roost," and the general resort of the school- 
boys for little sugar saplings for "shinny clubs." The 
camp-ground was in the western edge of it. For some 
years a grove near the present site of the Deaf and 
Dumb Asylum was used, then for a considerable 
time they were abandoned about here altogether. 
Their revival and establishment permanently at 
Acton is an affair of the last decade mainly. For 
a whole generation the most prominent and eSec- 
tive preacher at camp-meetings was Rev. James 
Havens, irreverently called by the ungodly " Old 
Sorrel," a man of rugged and powerful structure, 
both physically and intellectually, as fearless as the 
famous Peter Cartwright, and as well able to pro- 
tect himself from the violence that he sometimes 
had to encounter or expect from the " roughs" 
who sought diversion in disturbing the meetings. 
The most notable incident in all that is remem- 
bered of these gatherings about here is his en- 
counter with a man named Burkhart, commonly 
called " Buckhart," the leader of a lawless crowd 
brought here by the work on the National road 
and the Central Canal, and left here idle when 
those works were abandoned. They lived by dig- 
ging wells and moving houses, when they did any- 
thing but steal, and when they could not do better 
lived on the corn and potatoes, pigs and chickens 
of the farms that then covered the greater part of 
what is now the city. They were called the " chain- 



NOTABLE EVENTS AND INCIDENTS. 



49 



gang." Two or three met violent deaths in affrays 
a few years later, but Burkhart left the town, went 
down about the " Bluffs," and died in his bed at 
a ripe old age, in better moral condition than he 
had lived for most of his life. The camp-meeting 
which was the scene of the incident was held on 
the " Military Ground." " Old Dave Buckhart" 
appeared there on the skirts of the assembly pretty 
drunk, and wandering /barefooted in the simple 
costume of a dirty shirt and pair of pantaloons, 
his usual style of dress, from one point to another, 
singing a ribald song, or couplet rather, of his own 
making. Gen. Thomas A. Morris, the hero of the 
We.'t Virginia campaign, the credit of which Mc- 
Clellan absorbed, and Hugh O'Neal, one of the fore- 
most criminal lawyers of the State, had learned some- 
thing of the purpose of the chain-gang to disturb 
the camp-meeting, and went there expressly to pre- 
vent it and punish the rowdies. As soon as Burk- 
hart's singing was seen to attract attention they 
went to him, and at almost the same instant Mr. 
Havens came up. A peremptory order of silence 
was met by a drunken defiance, which the legendary 
account says was followed by a blow " from the 
shoulder" by the preacher that knocked the rowdy 
senseless. But Gen. Morris says he is not sure 
that Mr. Havens struck Burkhart, and that there 
was no knock-down. This phase of the story took 
form from an occurrence the next day, when Burk- 
hart was before Squire Scudder for disturbing the 
meeting. He was " gostrating" to the crowd at- 
tending the trial, and the late Samuel Merrill, 
thinking that the most effectual way to " squelch" 
the leader of the " chain-gang" and hold it in 
more wholesome dread of the law-abiding commu- 
nity would be to beat him at his own game, and 
show him that rowdies were not as formidable an- 
tagonists as better men, challenged him to wrestle 
with him. The rowdy was heavily and easily thrown 
by the sober and muscular lawyer, greatly to his 
chagrin and the discomfiture of the gang. It was 
not long after this that he left the town, and never 
returned except for a brief visit. 

An incident of the fall of 1822, still well remem- 
bered by the survivors of the early settlers, was an 
4 



invasion of gray squirrels that came from the east 
going westward. They were liberally killed, but the 
massacre made no impression on their countless num- 
bers. They destroyed a large portion of the corn 
they found in the line they followed as undeviatingly 
as a bullet, in spite of fences and streams and swamps. 
In 1845 another such emigration occurred, but of 
less extent and destructiveness. After this last there 
came a gradual change upon the character of the 
squirrel population of the county. Previously the 
" gray" was the only variety known, except a very 
rare red or " fox" squirrel. Afterwards the latter 
became the larger, and displaced the other almost as 
largely as it had itself been displaced. But this sort 
of game disappeared rapidly after the completion of 
the first lines of railroad, and now it is rarely seen 
nearer the city than a half-dozen miles. 

The fall of 1822 was signalized by the first at- 
tempts to open roads under the act of the Legislature 
of the preceding session. These roads must be dis- 
tinguished from the county roads, ordered by the 
County Board on petition, and examined by " view- 
ers," which constituted so large a part of the care of 
the county government in early days, and ever since 
in fact. They were surveyed and some work done 
upon them under direction of commissioners ap- 
pointed by the act authorizing them, but little seems 
to have been accomplished, except to clear away the 
trees, leaving the stumps nearly as serious an ob- 
struction. The White Water region was that with 
which the settlement naturally desired the earliest 
intercourse, and the roads in that direction were first 
opened, with one southward toward Madison, over 
which early in the winter a public meeting at Carter's 
tavern demanded a weekly mail to Vernon, Jennings 
Co., during the sessions of the Legislature at Cory- 
don. The roads of this period and for many a year 
afterwards were about as bad as any civilized com- 
munity ever had to put up with. They were pass- 
able for wagons and loads only when dried up in 
summer or frozen up in winter, and even in these 
favorable conditions there were long stretches that 
had to be " cross-layed" with rails or logs, filled in 
with chunks, to be passable even to a traveler on 
horseback. Since the advent of railroads, and the 



50 



HISTORY OP INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



diminished reliance of the community on wagon- 
roads for any but neighborhood communication, these 
latter have been improved greatly everywhere, and 
now there are none entering the city that are not 
well graded and graveled, and as passable at one 
season as another. 

The first change from the primitive condition of 
the roads was the " macadamizing" of the National 
road by the government. An effort was made early 
in the settlement to get Congress to run the line of 
this then great national work through Indianapolis, 
but nothing was accomplished till Oliver H. Smith, 
afterwards founder of the " Bee Line" Railroad, be- 
came a member of Congress from the eastern district 
of the State in 1827. The line would have passed 
near Columbus, in this State, Mr. Smith says in his 
" Early Indiana Sketches," but he succeeded in car- 
rying an amendment that brought it here, and along 
our principal street, then and for a whole generation 
better known as " Main Street" than Washington. 
The " metaling" of this road extended through the 
town and beyond the river to a point a few hundred 
feet west of Eagle Creek, but it stopped in the town 
at the eastern end, near East Street, leaving a con- 
siderable distance uncovered to a point where a short 
stretch east of Pogue's Creek was " metaled." The 
survey of this road was made by the late Lazarus B. 
Wilson, engineer of the " Louisville, New Albany 
and Chicago" Railroad. He also planned the wooden 
arch bridges on the line, which have been in constant 
use with little repair, except replacing the soft slate 
of the first stone-work of the river bridge with 
durable limestone, since 1833. William Wernweg 
and Walter Blake were contractors for these bridges. 

" Cross-laying," as often as otherwise called " cross- 
waying," was the universal substitute for better road- 
making during the first thirty years of the existence 
of the city. All the " bottoms" of streams were thus 
made roughly passable, with frequent repair and re- 
placing of rotten rails and logs. The old Madison 
road, through Franklin and Columbus, was especially 
improved or infested with cross-way work. Not lono- 
before the Union Depot was built the whole breadth 
of Pogue's Creek bottom, the head of this road, from 
Louisiana Street, at the foot of the rise on which the 



residence of Morris Morris stood on South Meridian 
Street, to the rise on the other side at the " White 
Point," built by Dr. John B. McClure, and long oc- 
cupied by Nicholas McCarty, was a mass of rails and 
saplings and chunks and swamp-slush, bordered by a 
willow-fringed cow-pasture on the west side and a 
corn-field on the east, where the Eagle Machine- Works 
stand. In making the later substantial improvements 
of this street some indications of the old condition 
were discovered. The town streets were little better 
than the country roads for many years. Even after 
the trees were cut out, — and trees were standing in 
some streets that are now built solidly for squares as 
late as 1842 or 1843, — the stumps were left for the 
wagon-way to wander around as crookedly as a 
" bottom" bayou, reinforced by frequent mud-holes, 
turned by large bodies of unrestrained hogs into hog- 
wallows. The fences along each side were " worm- 
fences," and sidewalks were pig-tracks hugging closely 
the corners of the fences when a big mud-hole had to 
be circumvented. But a few of the more central were 
better. 

One of the last incidents of the year was the elec- 
tion by the Legislature, early in December, of Bethuel 
F. Morris, grandfather of the distinguished young 
naturalist and Amazonian explorer, Ernest Morris, 
State agent in place of James Milroy, a non-resident, 
appointed by the Governor to succeed Gen. Carr, who 
had re.signed. Mr. Morris was subsequently president 
judge of the Circuit Court, and cashier of the Indian- 
apolis Branch of the State Bank. He died some 
twenty years ago, after a long period of retired life, 
at his home near the crossing of Morris Street and 
Madison Avenue. About the time of his appointment 
to the agency on the 7th of December, the first sale 
of lots for delinquent taxes took place. It was a 
long one, and the fact that the greatest delinquency 
was but two dollars eighty-seven and one-half cents, 
and the range ran all the way down to twenty-five 
cents, showed that money was hard to come by when 
such small amounts could not be commanded for so 
important a purpose as the redemption of town lots. 
Fortunes were going begging then if anybody had 
known it. Some few may have neither known nor 
guessed it, but were lucky enough to take " the tide 



NOTABLE EVENTS AND INCIDENTS. 



51 



at the flood." With most, however, it was the story 
of the man who could have got the half of the site 
of Chicago for a pair of boots, but had not the boots. 
Some of the largest fortunes in the city date from this 
tax sale and the condition of general finances it in- 
dicated. A proposition to incorporate the town this 
year was beaten. 

The winter of 1822-23 was made a pleasant sea- 
son, like that of the year before, by social enjoyments 
and free commingling of all the settlers in pursuing 
them, though it followed, like the other, a summer of 
much sickness, and fell in a time of great financial 
trouble. The county was settling up pretty rapidly. 
Two hundred and five entries of land had been made 
in Centre township outside of the donation during the 
years 1821-22, and many of the purchasers had be- 
come residents. In Decatur township forty-five en- 
tries were made in those two years ; in Wayne, one 
hundred and sixty-eight; in Pike, twenty-nine; in 
Washington, one hundred and forty-six ; in Law- 
rence, ten; in Warren, nineteen; in Franklin, fif- 
teen ; in Perry, eighty-one. It is noticeable that the 
townships more remote from the older settled por- 
tions of the State, from which immigrants might be 
expected, received more land-buyers than those on 
the east side and nearer. Wayne had a hundred and 
sixty-eight to nineteen in Warren, Decatur forty-five 
to ten in Lawrence, Pike twenty-nine to fifteen in 
Franklin. Land-buyers thought the western part of 
the county, with portions of the central tier of town- 
ships, contained the most desirable land. 

The first act of the Legislature in the new year of 
1823 was the assignment of a legislative representa- 
tion to the two-year-old county, January 7th. Can- 
didates began to show up with characteristic Ameri- 
can promptness at once, and the canvass of merits 
was kept up briskly till the election the next August. 
Early in the spring, as already related in the account 
of the first religious movements in the settlement, 
the Presbyterians took steps to build the first church 
in the town, on North Pennsylvania Street, pretty 
nearly opposite the Grand Opera-House site, and on 
the completion of the church organization the follow- 
ing July, Rev. David C. Proctor, of Connecticut, 
who had been retained as a missionary in 1822-23, 



was the first pastor, succeeded in September, 1824, 
by the celebrated oriental scholar and religious 
" free-lance," Professor George Bush, who was much 
such another as the more noted Orestes A. Brownson, 
except that he did not turn Catholic as the latter did. 
The religious vagaries of no two men in the country, 
backed by rare abilities and profound scholarship as 
they were, have attracted so much attention. Pro- 
fessor Bush continued in charge to March 20, 1829. 
On the 7th of March the second newspaper of the 
New Purchase made its first appearance under the 
name of Western Censor and Emigrant's Guide, with 
the customary ambition of papers in new settlements 
taking a name better proportioned to its hope than 
its importance. It was published and printed in a 
building on Washington Street, opposite the site of 
the New York Store, by Harvey Gregg and Douglass 
Maguire. Not much is known of the former now 
more than that he was a lawyer of good abilities from 
Kentucky, and appeared in the bar at the first ses- 
sion of the court. Mr. Nowland relates an incident 
of his first visit here at the time of the lot sales in 
1821 which illustrates his characteristic absent- 
mindedness and the solid honesty of the people and 
the times. He had brought a considerable sum with 
him to buy land, and had about two hundred dollars 
in gold left after making his first payments. He 
missed this one morning, and supposed he had 
dropped it from his pocket somewhere where he 
had been examining land. He gave it up for gone 
and went home. The following spring Mrs. Now- 
land found it under the rag-carpet of the room he 
had slept in with sixteen other men, all of whom 
might have seen him stick it under the carpet, and 
probably did, but had no more thought of meddling 
with it than they would if it had been locked in a 
dynamite safe. Travelers and moralists have boasted 
that the Finns have no word for steal, and know no 
use for locks. The primitive settlers of Indianapolis 
might have contested the Monthyon prize of virtue 
with them. It may be enough to suggest that the 
condition of society has changed in sixty-two years, 
and it would not be safe to put two hundred dollars 
under a carpet with sixteen other men in the room, 
with any expectation of seeing it again. He was the 



52 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



second lawyer to settle in the new toivn. He died 
early. 

Douglass Maguire, his partner, long sJrvived him, 
and was far better known. He came to the place in 
the spring of 1823 from Kentucky, was the last State 
auditor elected by the Legislature but one before 
the Constitution of 1850 went into operation, and 
was one of the four delegates from this county to 
the convention that framed that instrument. Gover- 
nor Wallace being the other Whig, and Alexander F. 
Morrison and Jacob Page Chapman the two Demo- 
crats. Mr. Maguire bore a strong resemblance to 
Henry Clay both in form and feature, and was to the 
full as generous and warm-hearted. The Western 
Censor and Emigrant' s Gruide was the precursor of 
the Journal, as the Gazette was of the Sentinel. Like 
its rival, its first issues were irregular. The second 
number appeared on the 19th of March, the third on 
the 26th of March, the fourth on the 2d of April 
the fifth on the 19th, the sixth on the 23d, after 
which its issue was regular. On the removal of the 
capital to Indianapolis in the fall of 1824, the State 
printer, John Douglass, bought the paper and changed 
the name to the Journal. The Journal it has been 
ever since, nearly sixty years now. The old editor, 
Mr. Maguire, retained an interest for some years with 
Mr. Douglass, and the firm was Douglass & Maguire, 
— very nearly a repetition of Mr. Maguire's name. 

About a mouth after the appearance of the second 
paper the first Sunday-school was organized in the 
cabinet-shop of Caleb Scudder, on the south side of 
the State-House Square, April 6, 1823. It proved 
a very popular as well as wholesome enterprise, mus- 
tering no less than seventy pupils the third Sunday. 
When the weather became bad in the fall it was sus- 
pended till the next spring, and was revived a year 
after its formation in April, 1824. The first Presby- 
terian Church was completed that spring and summer, 
and the school taken there. It was never suspended 
again. In 1829 it celebrated the Fourth of July in 
the fashion above described, and thenceforward the 
Sunday-schools monopolized the national holiday till 
its general celebration was abandoned except as a 
mere day of idling and making pleasant parties. The 
average attendance the first year was reported to be 



about forty, the second year fifty, the third year 
seventy -five, the fourth one hundred and six, the fifth 
one hundred and fifty. In 1827 a library of one 
hundred and fifty volumes had been procured. Up 
to 1829, when the Methodists completed their first 
church, all denominations united in this school, and 
it was thence called the " Union School," superin- 
tended and mainly promoted by Dr. Isaac Coe. It 
may be noted here that in all the Sunday-school pro- 
cessions on the Fourth of July from 1829 for thirty 
years nearly James Blake was the marshal, if he was 
at home. In 1829 the Methodist scholars colonized 
in their own church, and the Baptists followed in 
three years, as soon as they had a suitable place in 
their church. But the co-operation of all the schools 
was secured by a Sunday-school Union, in which all 
were represented. 

There were other indications of the solid growth of 
the town than the establishment of a second paper 
and the acquisition of a representation in the Legis- 
lature. The agent sold four acres of the donation, at 
sixty-five dollars and seventy-five cents an acre, for 
brick-yards. Better structures than the frames that 
were partially replacing logs were contemplated, 
though but one brick house, that of John Johnson, 
already referred to, was in progress. About the 1st 
of June two enterprising settlers, William Townsend, 
a pioneer of 1820, and Earl Pearce, later, put a set 
of woolen machinery in the mill of Isaac Wilson, on 
Fall Creek race, where Pattison's mill stood for many 
years in the later days of the town. FoUowiog close 
upon this came two new hotels of a more pretentious 
character than their log predecessors. I'he first was a 
large frame built by Maj. Thomas Carter opposite the 
court-house, opened on the 6th of October, and the 
scene of the first Baptist sermo^ on the 26th of the 
same month. Though a regular Baptist Church 
organization had existed from September of the year 
before, and a Mr. Barnes had been engaged as a 
preacher in June, third Saturday, 1823, yet the first 
regular sermon seems to have waited this chance in 
the house of one of the most devoted and deserving 
of the members. The hotel was burned Jan. 17, 
1825, during the first session of the Legislature, and 
the proprietor, in the days long before insurance was 



NOTABLE EVENTS AND INCIDENTS. 



53 



known in the New Purchase, lost all he had, with no 
indemnification. Mr. Ignatius Brown, illustrating 
the folly that sensible men will commit during the 
excitement of a fire if they are unused to such 
calamities, says that a squad of the citizens thought 
to save the sign which swung in country fashion to a 
tall post in front of the house, and chopped it down 
as they would a tree, the fall smashing the sign all to 
splinters, as they would have known if they had not 
lost their heads. Some months afterwards Mr. Carter 
replaced the burned house with that of Mr. Crum- 
baugh near the site of West Street, and kept his 
tavern there prosperously for several years till his 
death. The other hotel lived to become by itself and 
successor the most noted in the town or the State for 
about thirty years. This was the " Washington 
Hall," a frame on the site of the New York Store, 
built by James Blake and Samuel Henderson at the 
same time as Mr. Carter's house, but opened three 
months later,* Jan. 12, 182-1. Mr. Henderson had 
kept a smaller tavern there previously. The successor 
of the '• Hall" in 1836 was a brick, and made the 
name famous under the management of the late Ed- 
mund Browning. The old frame was moved to the 
next lot east, and there for a number of years was a 
shoe-shop in the lower story, and the law-office of 
Governor Wallace in the upper, where Lewis, his son, 
— now a distinguished general of the civil war and 
novelist and minister to Constantinople, — wrote sev- 
eral chapters of a novel in the style of G. P. R. James 
called the " Man at Arms," a tale of the thirteenth 
century. 

Mr. Ignatius Brown notes that early in the spring 
of this year — 1823 — three young settlers, named 
Stephen Howard, Israel Jlitchell, and Martin Smith, 
started for the Russian settlements on the Pacific by 
way of Pembina. Nothing was ever heard of them, 
except that they reached Fort Armstrong early in 
May, and on the 15th of August, three months and 
eleven days after reaching the fort on the Mississippi, 
got to Fever River, having seen no white man for 
twenty-three days after leaving the Vermillion Salt- 
Works, and having been robbed by the Indians and 
nearly starved. During the same spring the " In- 
diana Central Medical Society" was formed to license 



physicians to practice under the law then in force, 
with Dr. Samuel G. Mitchell as president, and Dr. 
Livingston Dunlap as secretary, the forerunner of 
many a medical association and college since. The 
Fourth of July was celebrated at the cabin of 
Wilkes Reagin, near the crossing of Market Street 
and Pogue's Run. He fed the company with an- 
other barbecue, and the company included a rifle 
company, commanded by Capt. Curry, of whom 
nothing more appears to be known. Mr. Reagin was 
a conspicuous man, being the first butcher, the first 
auctioneer, and one of the three first justices elected 
by the people. Rev. D. C. Proctor and Rev. Isaac 
Reed performed the religious services of the occasion, 
and Daniel B. Wick, brother of the judge, read the 
Declaration, and Morris Morris delivered the address. 
The September succeeding showed a population, ac- 
cording to the new Censor, of six or seven hundred, 
with a better state of health through the summer than 
had been generally believed. The Censor, true to its 
name, used the occasion to censure the jealousy with 
which other towns in the State regarded the still un- 
used capital. 

The August election for first members of the 
Legislature resulted in the choice of James Gregory, 
of Shelby, as senator, and James Paxton, of this 
county, as representative. There were the usual 
winter diversions to close the year, but varied, ac- 
cording to Mr. Brown's citation of an announcement 
in the Gdizette, by a theatrical performance of " Mr. 
Smith and wife, of the New York theatre," in the 
dining-room of Carter's tavern, on the last night of 
the year. Mr. Nowland puts this first dramatic exhibi- 
tion in the winter of 1825-26, and says the performer 
was a Mr. Crampton, a strolling actor. The difi'er- 
cnce is of no consequence as long as there is entire 
concurrence on the main feature of the affair. Music 
was needed, of course, and there was nobody to make 
it but Bill Bagwell, a jolly, vagabond sort of fellow, 
who made the first cigars in the place in a cabin on 
the southwest corner of Maryland and Illinois Streets, 
and played the fiddle at the pioneer dances and wed- 
dings. Maj. Carter was a rigid Baptist, of the kind 
called by " unrespective" unbelievers " forty-gallon" 
Baptists, who, though sober men, were not at all 



54 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



fanatical in their views as to the use of liquor, but 
he was immovably convinced of the sinfulness of 
playing or hearing a fiddle. To get his consent to 
allow Bagwell to play orchestra to the performance, 
the actor and musician both had to assure him that 
the instrument of the occasion was not a fiddle but a 
violin, and the performance of a hymn tune satisfied 
him of the difference. Mr. Nowland says the major 
interrupted the exhibition to stop the orchestra in 
playing the depraved jig called " Leather Breeches," 
and it required considerable diplomacy and the per- 
formance of church music to appease him. The pieces 
performed, the '' Doctor's Courtship, or the Indulgent 
Father," and the "Jealous Lovers"; tickets, thirty- 
seven and a half cents. Several performances were 
given, and the couple returned the following June 
but failed, and left suddenly, probably helped to the 
determination by a criticism of the Censor, which 
rated tlie performance rather low. 

It may have been a mere whim of a couple of over- 
sanguine new-comers, or it may have been a larger 
promise of prosperity than appears now to have been 
credible or possible at that time, but it is true, never- 
theless, that a Maj. Sullinger opened a " Military 
School" here on the 13th of January, 1824, for "the 
instruction of militia ofiScers and soldiers." Nearly 
at the same time William C. McDougal opened the 
first real estate agency, though the Gazette shows that 
its proprietor, George Smith, as before noted, opened 
a similar est.ablishment a year or two later. The 
month of January was signalized to the pioneer par- 
ticularly by an act of the Legislature of the 25th, 

ordering the permanent removal of the capital that 

is, the State offices and records — by the 10th of the 
following January, 1825, the Legislature to meet that 
day in the court-house capitol of the new capital 
for the first time. No doubt the promptness of the 
passage of this act was due in part to the delegation 
from the New Purchase, and the power of two votes 
to help those who helped the owners. On the return 
of Mr. Senator Gregory and Representative Paxton 
on the 21st of February, a public banquet was given 
them by the grateful citizens, and the occasion illus- 
trated with highly-colored views of the prosperity that 
would follow the change. Their dreams have been 



more than fulfilled, but not till all who were old 
enough to take part in the festivities were in their 
graves. 

The nest incident in the fifth year of the settle- 
ment was the most startling and alarming that had 
yet occurred. This was the murder, on the 22d of 
March, 1824, of a company of nine Indians of the 
Shawanese tribe, — two men, three women, two boys, 
and two girls, — some eight miles above Pendleton, by 
a company of six whites, four men and two boys. 
An account of this cruel massacre was given in a 
sketch of the occupancy of the New Purchase by the 
Indians, but there may be added here, as illustrative 
of the early condition of the white settlements, the 
account both of the crime and the trial made by Hon. 
Oliver H. Smith, ex-United States senator, who wit- 
nessed the trials, and was at the time one of the lead- 
ing lawyers of the State. 

" The Indians were encamped on the east side of 
Fall Creek, about eight miles above the falls. The 
country around their camping-ground was a dense, 
unbroken forest filled with game. The principal In- 
dian was called Ludlow, and was said to be named for 
Stephen Ludlow, of Lawrenceburg. The other man I 
call Mingo. (His name appears from other accounts to 
have been Logan.) The Indians had commenced their 
season's hunting and trapping, the men with their guns, 
the squaws setting the traps, preparing and cooking 
the game, and caring for the children, — two boys some 
ten years old, and two girls of more tender years. A 
week had passed, and the success of the Indians had 
been only fair, with better prospects ahead, as spring 
was opening and raccoons were beginning to leave 
their holes in the trees in search of frogs that had 
begun to leave their muddy beds at the bottoms of the 
creeks. The trapping season was only just com- 
mencing. Ludlow and his band, wholly unsuspicious 
of harm and unconscious of any approaching enemies, 
were seated around their camp-fire, when there ap- 
proached through the woods five white men, — Harper, 
Hudson, Sawyer, Bridge, Sr., Bridge, Jr. Harper 
was the leader, and stepping up to Ludlow took him 
by the hand and told him his party had lost their 
horses, and wanted Ludlow and Mingo to help find 
them. The Indians agreed to go in search of the 



NOTABLE EVENTS AND INCIDENTS. 



55 



horses. Ludlow took one path and Mingo another. 
Harper followed Ludlow and Hudson trailed Mingo, 
keeping some fifty yards behind. They traveled some 
short distance from the camp, when Harper shot 
Ludlow through the body ; he fell dead on his face. 
Hudson, on hearing the crack of the rifle of Harper, 
immediately shot Mingo, the ball entering just below 
his shoulders and passing clear through his body. 
The party then met and proceeded to within gunshot 
of the camp. Sawyer shot one of the squaws through 
the head, Bridge, Sr., shot another squaw, and Bridge, 
Jr., the other. Sawyer then fired at the oldest boy, 
but only wounded him. The other children were 
shot by some of the party. Harper then led the way 
on to the camp. The two squaws, one boy, and the 
two little girls lay dead, but the oldest boy was still 
living. Sawyer took him by the legs and knocked 
his brains out against the end of a log. The camp 
was then robbed of everything worth carrying away. 

" Harper, the ringleader, left immediately for Ohio, 
and was never taken. (He is said by tradition to 
have reached Ohio, eighty miles away through the 
woods, in twenty-four hours.) Hudson, Sawyer, 
Bridge, Sr., and Bridge, Jr., were arrested, and 
when I first saw them they were confined in a square 
log jail, built of heavy beech and sugar-tree logs, 
notched down closely, and fitting tight above, below, 
and on the sides. The prisoners were all heavily 
ironed and sitting on the straw on the floor. Hud- 
son was a man of about middle size, with a bad look, 
dark eye, and bushy hair, about thirty-five years of 
age in appearance. Sawyer was about the same age, 
rather heavier than Hudson, but there was nothing 
in his appearance that would have marked him in a 
crowd as any other than a common farmer. Bridge, 
Sr., was much older than Sawyer, his head was quite 
gray ; he was above the common height, slender, and 
a little bent while standing. Bridge, Jr., was a tall 
stripling some eighteen years of age. Bridge, Sr., 
was the father of Bridge, Jr., and the brother-in-law 
of Sawyer. 

" The news of these Indian murders flew upon the 
wings of the wind. The settlers became greatly 
alarmed, fearing the retaliatory vengeance of the 
tribes, and especially of the other bands of the Sen- 



ecas (Shawanese). The facts reached Mr. John 
Johnston at the Indian agency at Piqua, Ohio. An 
account was sent from the agency to the War De- 
partment. Col. Johnston and William Conner visited 
all the Indian tribes and assured them that the gov- 
ernment would punish the ofienders, and obtained 
the promises of the chiefs and warriors that they 
would wait and see what their ' Great Father' would 
do before they took the matter into their own hands. 
This quieted the fears of the settlers, and prepara- 
tions were made for the trials. A new log build- 
ing was erected at the north part of Pendleton, with 
two rooms, one for the court and one for the grand 
jury. The court-room was about twenty by thirty 
feet, with a heavy puncheon floor, a platform at one 
end three feet high, with a strong railing in front, a 
bench for the judges, a plain table for the clerk in 
front on the floor, a long bench for the counsel, a 
little pen for the prisoners, a side bench for the wit- 
nesses, and a long pole in front, substantially sup- 
ported, to separate the crowd from the court and bar. 
A guard day and night was placed around the jail. 
The court was composed of Mr. Wick, presiding 
judge, Samuel Holliday and Adam Winchell, associ- 
ates. Judge Wick was young on the bench, but 
with much experience in criminal trials. Judge 
Winchell was a blacksmith, and had ironed the pris- 
oners. Moses Cox was the clerk. He could barely 
write his name, and when a candidate for justice of 
the peace at Connersville he boasted of his superior 
qualifications : ' I have been sued on every section 
of the statute, and know all about the law, while my 
competitor has never been sued, and knows nothing 
about the statute.' Samuel Cory, the sheriff, was a 
fine specimen of a woods Hoosier, tall and strong- 
boned, with a hearty laugh, without fear of man or 
beast, and with a voice that made the woods ring 
as he called the jurors and witnesses. Col. John- 
ston, the Indian agent, was directed to attend the 
trial to see that the witnesses were present and to 
pay their fees. Gen. Noble, then a United States 
senator, was employed by the Secretary of War to 
prosecute, with power to fee an assistant. Philip 
Sweetzer, a young son-in-law of the general, of high 
promise in his profession, was selected as assistant. 



56 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



Calvin Fletcher, then a young man of more than or- 
dinary ability, and a good criminal lawyer, was the 
regular prosecuting attorney. ' In another allusion 
to these cases Mr. Smith mentions the lawyers who 
were present, — Gen. James Noble, Philip Sweetzer, 
Harvey Gregg, Lot Bloomfield, James Rariden, 
Charles H. Test, Calvin Fletcher, Daniel B. Wick, 
and William R. Morris, of this State, and Gen. 
Sampson Mason and Moses Vance, of Ohio. These 
last were defending. 

The conviction and execution of the prisoners, ex- 
cept Harper, who escaped, and young Bridge, who 
was pardoned, are related in the sketch already re- 
ferred to. Mr. Nowland describes the novel gallows 
that was used : " A wagon was drawn up the side of 
the hill on planks, so that the wheels would move 
easily. A post was placed on the side of the hill, 
just above the wagon. To this post the wagon was 
fastened by a rope, so that when the rope was cut the 
wagon would run down the hill without aid. The 
two old men were placed in the tail of the wagon, 
the ropes adjusted, and at the signal the rope was 
cut, and the wagon ran from under the men. Sawyer 
broke his arms loose, caught the rope, and raised | 
himself about eighteen inches. The sheriflF quickly 
caught him by the ankles, and gave a sudden jerk, 
which brought the body down, and he died without 
another struggle." The extended quotation from 
Mr. Smith's reminiscences is interesting, not only as 
an account of an afikir of national importance, and 
especially important to the settlers of Indianapolis 
and the country around, but as a picture of the 
primitive backwoods court-house and modes of court 
business. These executions, as before remarked, are 
claimed to be the first that ever occurred in the 
United States as the penalty, judicially inflicted, of 
the murder of Indians by whites. Hudson escaped 
once after his sentence, and hid in a hollow log in 
the darkness of an unusually dark night, but was 
soon discovered and arrested. Many years ago it 
used to be told among the old settlers and their chil- 
dren that Governor Ray, in the speech announcing 
the pardon of young Bridge, June 30, 1825, after 
his father and Sawyer had been hung, said to the 
young murderer : " There are but two powers in the 



universe that can now save your life. One is the 
Almighty God and the other is the Executive of 
Indiana." It was probably a joke manufactured 
after the old Governor's eccentricities had become so 
striking and notorious that such an imputation could 
not harm him. He was long a noted citizen of In- 
dianapolis. 

Governor Ray was Lieutenant-Governor with Gov- 
ernor Hendricks, and from February 25th, when 
Hendricks went to the National Senate, he was act- 
ing Governor. He was subsequently elected two full 
terms, and left the office, the last he ever held, in 
December, 1831. He came to the capital about the 
time the Legislature met, Jan. 10, 1825, bought 
property here, and remained here till he died, about 
1850. He owned a considerable portion of the 
square on Washington Street, opposite the court- 
house, near where Carter's tavern had stood, and in 
his later life, when his mind began to be considerably 
unsettled, he imagined a magnificent railroad system, 
of which this block of his was to be the centre. Ra- 
diating lines were to penetrate the country in all di- 
rections, with villages every five miles, tow_ns every 
twenty miles, and cities every fifty miles. Deep 
gorges among hills were to be crossed on a natural 
trestle-work, made by sawing oif the tops of trees 
level with the track, and laying sills on these. 
Oddly enough this very expedient has been used on 
the Denver and Rio Grande Narrow-Gauge Road, or 
a road among the mountains in that region. Not 
less singular is the fact that this " dream of a sick 
brain," as everybody thought it when it was told 
and talked about, has proved a most substantial 
reality, except that Governor Ray's court-house 
block is not the site of the great central hub depot. 
In 1826 his influence with the Indians, says Mr. 
Nowland, when he was a commissioner, with Gen. Tip- 
ton, of this State, and Gen. Cass, of Michigan, to pro- 
cure a cession of the lands of the Pottawatomies and 
Eel River and Wabash Miamis, secured from the In- 
dians a grant to the State of one section of land for 
every mile of road, a hundred feet wide, from Lake 
Michigan through Indianapolis to the Ohio, at any 
point fixed by the Legislature. It was a most 
valuable donation, and the '' old Michigan road," 



NOTABLE EVENTS AND INCIDENTS. 



57 



running through Shelbyville, Greensburg, Napoleon, 
to Madison, the point selected by the Legislature, 
was long the best improved road in the State, and 
never inferior to any but the completed portions of 
the National road. The Governor's son, James 
Brown Gay Ray, died when a boy, but a daughter 
survived him, and continues his abilities, without his 
vagaries, in some of our best citizens. 

The usual Fourth of July celebration was held at 
Reagin's, as the year before, with Gabriel J. Johnson 
as orator for the citizens and Maj. J. W. Redding for 
the militia. Squire Foote was the reader. The 
August election following showed a change in the 
lines of parties from the position in 1822, when 
" White Water" was arrayed against " Kentucky." 
Now the contestants were two Kentuckians, Col. A. 
W. Russell and Morris Morris, candidates for sheriff 
to succeed Mr. Bates. Russell was elected by two 
hundred and sixty-five to one hundred and forty- 
eight for Mr. Morris. At the Presidential election 
in November, Clay received two hundred and thirteen 
votes, Jackson ninety-nine, and Adams sixteen. Clay 
had all the " Kentucky" strength and a good deal of 
the "White Water." The poll in the county was 
one hundred and two less in the Presidential than 
in the State election, supposed to have been the re- 
sult of removals to the adjacent regions in the inter- 
val. In April the Sunday-school visitors reported a 
resident population on the donation of one hundred 
and seventy-two voters, and forty-five single women 
from fifteen to forty-five. The voters would indicate 
a population of about eight hundred. A little more 
than two years before the Gazette, as before noted, 
had enumerated sixty-one men of seventeen different 
pursuits, who were supposed to be about half of the 
adult male population of the spring of 1822, indi- 
cating a total population of about six hundred. This 
was not increased in the election on 1st of April. 
So the growth of the town in two years, from April 
22d to April 24th, seems to have been about three 
hundred residents. It does not fairly show the addi- 
tional immigration in that time, however, because a 
good many who came to the town afterwards re 
moved to the country. A large emigration to the 
Wabash passed through the town this year. The 



streets and the lots along Washington Street, and di- 
verging from it in some places, were more or less 
cleared of trees, the court-house was in progress, the 
Presbyterian Church well advanced, a school-house 
built, two or throe religious organizations holding 
regular services, two new and superior hotels ad- 
vancing, a distillery on the bayou, a woolen-mill and 
three or four grist- and saw-mills at work, so that 
there was no cause for serious discouragement, though 
progress was not rapid enough to excite any very 
sanguine hopes. The river and all its tributaries 
were flooded during the spring, and a keel-boat 
called the " Dandy" came up on the rise on the 22d 
of May, with twenty-eight tons of salt and whiskey. 
This flood is said by the sketch of 1857 and that of 
Mr. Merrill of 1850 to have been the greatest ever 
known in the river. It was probably equaled by 
that of 1828 and 1847, and very closely approached 
by that of February of this year C1883). The 
State's revenue from Marion County in 1824 was 
one hundred and fifty-four dollars and twenty-five 
cents. 

In anticipation of the meeting of the Legislature 
the citizens formed a " mock" body in the fall of 1824 
called the " Indianapolis Legislature," the members 
of which assigned themselves to any counties they 
chose, and discussed pretty much the same questions 
as the real Legislature had discussed, or would when 
it met. It elected its own Governor about as often as 
it wanted to get a fresh message or inaugural, which 
was sure to be a humorous affair, and its debates were 
not unfrequently a good deal better than those of the 
body it represented. The men who engaged in them 
were sometimes ex-members, and occasionally actual 
members of the real body, and the information and 
arguments elicited in the sham debate more than 
once decided the result of the real one. The meet- 
ings were continued till about 1836. They were dis- 
continued then for several years, but revived for a 
while during the winter of 1842 or 1843 or there- 
abouts. In November, Samuel Merrill, treasurer of 
the State, arrived at the capital with several wagon- 
loads of records and money, and thenceforward the 
chosen capital was the real one. 

During the preceding summer and fall a brick 



HISTORY OP INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



house had been built for the residence of the treas- 
urer, with a little brick office at the west side, on 
the southwest corner of Washington and Tennessee 
Streets, where the State buildings now are. Mr. 
Merrill was the first occupant, keeping the place till 
1834, when he gave way to the late Nathan B. 
Palmer, who succeeded him in the treasurer s office 
by election of the Legislature. He remained here, 
however, and became one of the men who gave the 
town its impulse to intellectual and moral as well as 
material improvement. 

Samuel Merrill was born in Peacham, Vt., Oct. 29, 
1792. He died in Indianapolis, Aug. 24, 1855. 
He entered an advanced class in Dartmouth College, 
but did not graduate, for in his junior year he left 
to join his elder brother, James, in teaching in York, 
Pa. There he spent three years in teaching and 
studying law, having for his familiar associates Thad- 
deus Stevens, John Blanchard, and his elder brother, 
James Merrill, all from Peacham, Vt., and all men 
who have made their mark on their age. At the end 
of this time he removed to Vevay, in this State, and 
established himself in the practice of law. In 1821 
he was elected to the Legislature for two years, and 
during his term of office he was elected trea.surer of 
State. In the discharge of the duties of this office 
he removed first to Corydon, and thence in 1824 to 
this place. He held the office of treasurer of State 
till 1834, when he was chosen president of the State 
Bank. The duties of this office he discharged with 
the most unwearied fidelity and unimpeachable honesty 
till 1S44, when his public life terminated, with the 
exception of four years of service as the president of 
the Madison and Indianapolis Railroad Company. 
For several years before his death he was engaged 
in the book trade, still continued by his son. His 
daughter Kate until very recently was Professor of 
English Literature in Butler University. Mr. Merrill 
assisted in forming Henry Ward Beecher's church 
here, and was all his life after most earnest and 
devoted in all good works. 

The following account of the journey of the capi- 
tal from Corydon to Indianapolis, written by a mem- 
ber of Mr. Merrill's family, is interesting, not only as 
the first account of the migration ever published, but 



as a very graphic description of the condition and 
ways of life of the Indianians nearly .sixty years ago : 
" The journey of about one hundred and sixty miles 
occupied two weeks. The best day's travel was 
eleven miles. One day the wagons accomplished 
but two miles, passages through the woods having to 
be cut on account of the impassable character of 
the road. Four four-horse wagons and one or two 
saddle-horses formed the means of conveyance for 
two families, consisting of about a dozen persons, 
and for a printing-press and the State treasury of 
silver in strong wooden boxes. The gentlemen slept 
in the wagons or on the ground to protect the silver, 
the families found shelter at night in log cabins 
which stood along the road at rare though not incon- 
venient intervals. The country people were, many 
of them, as rude as their dwellings, which usually 
consisted of but one room, serving for all the pur- 
poses of domestic life, — cooking, eating, sleeping, 
spinning and weaving, and the entertainment of com- 
pany. At one place a young man, who perhaps had 
come miles to visit his sweetheart, sat up with her all 
night on the only vacant space in the room, the hearth 
of the big fireplace. He kept on his cap, which was 
of coonskin, the tail hanging down behind, and gave 
the children the impression that he was a bear." 

At the time of the removal William Hendricks 
was Governor, but was elected to the National Senate 
that winter, and on Feb. 12, 1825, acting Lieutenant- 
Governor Ray, who had been made president of the 
Senate when Lieutenant-Governor Ruiliff Boone re- 
tired, succeeded to the Governorship, and was regu- 
larly elected the following August, and again in 1828. 
The Secretary of State was Robert A. New, from 
1816 to 1825, succeeded by W. W. Wick ; the audi- 
tor, William H. Lilley, from 1816 to 1829, suc- 
ceeded in 1829 by Morris Morris, who held till 
1844; the treasurer, Samuel Merrill, from 1823 to 
1834, succeeded by Nathan B. Palmer. The Legis- 
lature, which met in January, took the court-house 
before it was entirely finished, the House sitting in 
the lower room, the Senate in the upper. The treas- 
urer occupied the building especially erected for him, 
and the other State officers went where they could. 
For nearly thirty years after the erection of the 



ORIGINAL ENTRIES OP LANDS IN THE COUNTY. 



" Governor's house'' in the Circle in 1827, as before 
noted, the Supreme judges had their " chambers" 
there, and most or all of the State officers were there 
for a time except the treasurer. His residence and 
office were abandoned before the late war and rented. 
It would be useless if it were possible to hunt out all 
the rooms the State auditor and secretary occupied 
up to the time they took permanent possession of the 
building expressly erected for them in 1865, but it 
may be noted that after the completion of Masonic 
Hall, in 1850, they went there, and subsequently 
moved into the " McOuat Block," on Kentucky 
Avenue, where they remained till their final change. 
The clerk of the Supreme Court previously had his 
office in a little building in the Court-House Square, 
and when that was torn down went to the State- 
House. The reporter of the Supreme Court has 
never had a public office, and the attorney-general 
and superintendent of public instruction, after their 
offices were created, found accommodations where 
they chose till the " State Building" was erected and 
enlarged. The State Library was kept in the "Gov- 
ernor's house" for a time, in charge of the State offi- 
cers there, but in IS-ll, John Cook, a bustling, " log- 
rolling," pushing little fellow, recently from Ohio, 
got himself made librariau, and the library was put 
in the south rooms, west side, of the State-House. 
Cook was succeeded in 1843, under a Democratic 
Legislature, by Samuel P. Daniels, an old resident 
and a tailor, and he by the late John B. Dillon, au- 
thor of two " Histories of Indiana," and he, in 1850, 
by Nathaniel Bolton, first editor of the town, as al- 
ready related. The adjutant-general's office was 
hardly a visible appendage to the commander-in-chief 
of the State's army and navy till 1846, when the 
Mexican war made it a place of large responsibility 
and heavy duties, with Gen. David Reynolds as occu- 
pant. During the late war it became again one of the 
most important offices of the State, and was held by 
Gen. Wallace, Gen. Noble, and Gen. Terrell. It has 
never been reduced since to the unimportance of its 
early existence, It and the State Library and the 
State geologist's office are now in a building opposite 
the east entrance of the new State-House. The library 
is now, in addition to its proper use, a museum of 



relics of the Mexican war and the civil war, while the 
geologist's office is one of the finest museums of geo- 
logical and paleontological specimens in the world. 

On the 16th of November, 1824, John Douglass, 
State printer at Corydon, who had come out with 
Mr. Merrill, bought the interest of Harvey Gregg in 
the Western Censor and Emigrant's Guide. On 
the 11th of January, the day after the first meeting 
of the Legislature, the paper appeared as the In- 
diana Journal, a name it has retained through many 
changes of ownership, with a reputation and influence 
as unchanging as its name. Much of the early suc- 
cess of the paper was due to Mr. Douglass. 

The first period of the history of the city and 
county — substantially identical — ends with the ar- 
rival of the State capital. Of improvements, trade, 
political movements, increase of population as accu- 
curate a view has been presented as can be obtained 
at this remote period, but a glance at the settlement 
of the surrounding townships and at the county 
business will make it more comprehensive and satis- 
factory. Prom 1821, when the government lands in 
the New Purchase were first opened to sale, till 1824 
or the beginning of 1825, when the capital was fully 
established here, the entries of land in the different 
townships, as appears from the " Tract Book" in the 
county auditor's office, were as appears in the follow- 
ing list. It will be seen that the larger portion of 
the entries of the first two years were in Centre and 
the two lines of townships west and about it, the 
eastern portion of the county attracting little immi- 
gration till the central and western were pretty well 
filled : 

Centre Township outside the Citv. 
Town 15 Norlh, Rang^ 3 Eaut. 
Name and Date. Acres. ^j^^ 

Robert Harding and Isaac Wilson, July, 1821 258 3 

Jesse McKay and Joseph Frazee. July, 1821 59 3 

James Rariden, July, 1821 80 10 

Eliakim Harding, July, 1S21 80 10 

Eliakim Harding, July, 1821 80 10 

Jonathan Lyons, July, 1821 80 10 

Daniel Yandes, July, 1821 160 10 

William Myers, July, 1821 80 10 

James H. McClure, July, 1821 80 10 

Daniel Yandes and Ephraim D. Reed, July, 1821. 95 11 

William Sanders, July, 1821 160 13 

Richard T. Keen, July, 1821 80 13 

James H. McClure, July, 1821 80 13 



60 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



Name and Date. Acres. 

David Wood, July, 1S21 100 

John HiiDt, July, 1821 SO 

John Smock, July, 1821 SO 

Armstrong Brandon, July, 1821 80 

James Pell, July, 1821 42 

William A. Johnson, July, 1821 95 

John Stephens, December, 1821 66 

Alexander Ewing, July, 1821 63 

William Wiles, July, 1821 74 

James Pell, July, 1821 98 

John Stephens, February, 1821 73 

Michael Vanblaricum, July, 1821 SO 

Joel Wright, July, 1821 80 

Morris Morris, July, 1821...; 160 

Jacob Ogle, August, 1.S21 80 

Zadoc Smith, August, 1821 80 

Laben Harding, July, 1S21 160 

Cornelius Vanarsdal, July, 1821 104 

Cornelius Vanarsdal, July, 1S21 80 

Abraham Heaton. August, 1S21 71 

Noah Sinks, October, 1823 54 

John G. Brown, July, 1821 80 

Alexander Ewing, July, 1S21 80 

James Lewis, August, 1821 ... 60 

John Stephens, December, 1821 73 

Robert Brenton, July, 1821 100 

Elial T. Foote, July, 1S21 68 

George Vandegritf, July, 1821 SO 

James T. Bradley, July, 1821 80 

Henry Bradley, July, 1S21 SO 

John Cutler, July, 1821 80 

John Smock and John Cutler, July, 1821 80 

Wickliff Kitchen, July,1821 160 

John Smock, July, 1821 160 

Town 15 iXorth, liamje 4 Eaut. 

Mjcajah Ferguson, July, 1S21 48 

Alexander Ewing, July, 1821 80 

Micajah Ferguson, July, 1821 80 

Isaac Kinder, July, 1821 160 

James Linton, July, 1821 150 

George Porter, July, 1821 153 

John G. Brown, July, 1S21 160 

John F. Ross. July, 1.821 77 

Rezin Hammond, July, 1821 77 

James, George, and Benjamin Barrett, July, 1S21 75 

Joseph MeCormick and Noah Noble, July, 1821.. 75 

James Givan, July, 1821 77 

Cassa Ann Poguc, July, 1821 77 

John Wilson, July, 1821 160 

John Robinson and John D. Lutz, July, 1821 76 

William Craig, July, 1821 76 

John Wilson, July, 1821 80 

Daniel Stephens, July, 1821 80 

Rezin Hammond, July, 1S21 76 

Abel Potter, July, 1821 76 

Willis G. Atherton, July, 1S21 80 

Wickliff Kitchell, July, 1821 80 

Wickliff Kitchell, July, 1821 80 

Robert Smith, July, 1821 -. 80 

William McLaughlin, July, 1821 160 

John Shafer, July, 1S21 80 

Nathan Aldridge, August, 1821 80 

Harvey Pope, July, 1821 160 

Willis G. Atherton. July, 1821 160 



tion. 
13 



Name and Date. Acres. ^j^^^ 

David Acre, February, 1823 80 9 

Hervey Gregg, Janu.iry, 1823 80 9 

Robert Weightman, November, 1822 SO 9 

Jonathan Gillam, July. 1821 80 9 

William McLaughlin, October, 1821 80 17 

John Graham, August, 1821 80 17 

John Graham, August, 182 1 80 17 

S. G. Huntingdon, August, 1821 SO 17 

William Sanders, July, 1822 SO 17 

Maxwell Chambers, January, 1822 80 17 

Jacob Mason, January, 1822 80 17 

Obcd Foote, October, 1821 SO 17 

Joseph Catterlin, July, 1821 SO 18 

Archibald C. Reid, July, 1821 80 18 

■John W. Redding, July, 1S21 155 18 

David Mallery, Augu.'it, 1821 SO 18 

Humphrey Griffith, August, 1821 80 18 

James Curry, August, 1821 7S 18 

James Curry, August, 1821 78 IS 

Henry Bowser, August, 1821 160 19 

Jacob Moyer, September, 1821 158 I'J 

Henry Bowser. August, 1821 160 19 

Henry Bowser, August, 1821 78 19 

John Dickson, July, 1821 78 19 

Otis Hobart, December, 1821 80 20 

John Hobart, December, 1821 80 20 

Hervey Bates, June, 1822 80 20 

Hervey Bates, June, 1822 80 20 

John Hobart, December, 1821 80 20 

Joseph Greer, July, 1822 80 20 

Isaac Liinpus, July, 1821 80 20 

Robert McGill, July, 1822 SO 21 

William Brindle, November, 1822 80 21 

William Brindle, November, 1822 80 21 

Jacob L. Doup. August, 1821 80 21 

Joseph Scott, November, 1822 160 21 

Samuel Dickson, October, 1S21 160 21 

Town 16 North, Range 3 East. 

Thomas Bishop, July, 1821 174 22 

Francis Griffin, August, 1821 126 22 

John Moler, July, 1S21 160 22 

James Vanblaricum, July, 1821 60 22 

John Burns, July, 1821 76 22 

Noah Wright, July, 1821 160 23 

William D. Booker, July, 1821 80 23 

William Nugent, July, 1821 80 23 

Levi AVright, July, 1821 160 23 

Joseph Hanna, July, 1821 80 23 

Abraham Barnett. July, 1821 80 23 

John G. Brown, July, 1821 160 24 

William Powers, July, 1821 80 24 

Noah Wright, July, 1821 80 24 

John Gallaher, July, 1821 160 24 

David Huston, July, 1821 100 24 

Isaac Kinder, July, 1821 80 25 

John Sutherland, July, 1821 80 25 

John Sulberland, July, 1S21 100 25 

William Reagan, July, 1821 100 25 

Thomas O'Neal, July, 1821 160 25 

Robert Smitb, July, 1821 160 20 

Josephs. Benson, July, 1821 80 26 

William Nugent, July, 1821 80 26 

John Wolfington, July, 1821 80 26 

Richard Williams, July, 1821 80 26 



ORIGINAL ENTRIES OF LANDS IN THE COUNTY. 



61 



Name and Date Acres. 

Noah Flood, July, 1S21 80 

James Raiiden, July, 1S21 SO 

Francis Davis, July, 1821 80 

James Mcllvain, July, 1821 80 

James Mcllvain, July, 1821 65 

Benjamin McCarty, July, 1821 79 

Alexander Ewing, July, 1821 95 

Samuel P. BooUer, July, I82I 160 

Edward Carvin, July, 1821 143 

Samuel Glass, July, 1821 160 

Fielding Geter, July, 1821 95 

Zenas Lake, July, 1821 83 

Joseph S. Benham, July, 1821 78 

Isaac Wilson. July, 1821 74 

Jesse McKay and E. D. Reed, July, 1821 101 

Jesse McKay and Jacob Collip, July, 1821 160 

Cyrus C. Tivis, July, 1821 160 

Robert Smith and H. Gregg, July, 1821 160 

John Moler, July, 1821 SO 

James Linton, July, 1821 SO 

Jeremiah Johnston, July, 1S21 160 

Samuel Henderson, July, 1821 160 

Robert Culbertson, July, 1821 160 

Jonathan Lyon, July, 1821 80 

John Carr and Samuel P. Rooker, July, 1821 80 

Town 16 North, Jiange 4 East. 

Noah and Thomas G. Noble, July, 1821 160 

Christopher Hager, July, 1821 76 

Enoch Clark, July, 1821 76 

Joseph Curry, July, 1821 160 

Reason Reagan, July, 1821 151 

Newton Claypool, August, 1821 160 

Newton Claypool, August, 1821 160 

Tobias Smith, August, 1821 160 

Joseph Curry, July, 1821 160 

James D. Conrey, October, 1823 80 

John Chamberlin, June, 1822 160 

William Mitchell, August, 1821 160 

Benjamin Taffe, June, 1822 80 

Tobias Smith, August, 1821 160 

William Mitchell, August, 1821 80 

Tobias Smith, August, 1821 80 

Baiil Roberts, August, 1821 160 

Tobias Smith, August, 1821 160 

George Buckner, April, 1823 80 

John Senour, October, 1823 80 

Jiired Sayre, October, 1821 80 

Newton Claypool, August, 1821 75 

Isaac Kinder, July, 1821 75 

David Bloyd, October, 1821 80 

Jacob Bloyd,July, 1821 80 

Jared Sayre, October, 1821 76 

Jeremiah Johnson, Jr., July, IS2I 76 

John Shafer, August, 1821 160 

Stephen Bartholomew and Wm. Smith, July, 1821 15i 

William McCleery, July, 1821 160 

John Carr, July, 1821 79 

Elial T. Foote, July, 1821 79 

John Carr, July, 1821 SO 

George Taffe, August, 1821 80 

Vincent Rawlings, October, 1821 80 

Lewis Robinson, October, 1821 80 

Daniel Pattengill, July, 1821 160 

Daniel Pattengill, July, 1821 160 



78 
160 



160 



Name and Date. Acres. 

John F. Right, August, 1821 160 

Levi Beebee, 1821 160 

David Johnson, April, 1821 80 

Isaac Cool, April, 1821 80 

Decatck Township. 
Town 14 North, Range 2 EohU 

Ludwell Gains, August, 1824 77 

Ludwell Gains, August, 1821 140 

Ludwell Gains, August, 1821 SO 

John Cook, June, 1824 160 

John Kenworthy, July, 1824 SO 

Joshua Compton, December, 1825 80 

Reason Reagan, November, 1826 78 

Jesse George, January, 1826 77 

John Ballard, October, 1823 78 

Thomas J. Matlock, July, 1821 

Caleb Easterling, November, 1S22 

Joseph Allen, February, 1824 

Caleb Rhoads, November, 1822 

Isaac George, December, 1823 

Isaac George, November, 1823 

Robert Furnas, January, 1826 

Robert Furnas, January, 1826 

Uriah Carson, June, 1826 

Thomas Davis, January, 1825 

Azel Dollarhide, July, 1821 

Absalom Dollarhide, January, 1825 

Aaron Coppock, August, 1S26 

Aaron Coppock, February, 1826 , 

Zimri Brown, May, 1824 

Zimri Brown, December, 1826 

Abner Co.k, December, 1824 

William Barnett, December, 1S25 

Jesse Barnett, December, 1824 

William Barnett, 1823 

Thomas Barnett, 1823 

James V. Barnett, 1823 8 

Athanasius Barnett, 1823 8 

James Haworth, November, 1824 8 

James Haworth, November, 1824 8 

James Haworth, October, 1826 8 

James Ilorton, November, 1824 £ 

James Horton, November, 1824 S 

Christopher Wilson, November, 1822 8 

Christopher Wilson, November, 1822 S 

Christopher Wilson, November, 1S22 16 

Jonathan Clark, February, 1824 S 

Joseph Jessup, December, 1823 

Richard Mendenhall, October, 1823 160 

Christopher AVilson, November, 1822 80 

Christopher Wilson, December, 1824 SO 

Christopher Wilson, December, 1824 SO 

Gasper Koons, February, 1824 80 

Joseph Mendenhall, October, 1823 160 

Samuel Dodds, July, 1821 160 

Samuel Dodds, July, 1821 80 

Azel Dollarhide, July, 1821 80 

John Dollarhide, July, 1821 80 

John Dollarhide, November, 1828 80 

Christopher Wilson, December, 1824 80 

Town 15 North, Range 3 East. 

Eli Sulgrove, August, 1821 430 

Eli Sulgrove, October, 1822 



80 



160 



206 



62 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



Name and Date. Acres. 

Eli Sulgrove, August, 1821 3i 

George Miller, July, 1821 160 

Jesse Wright, July, 1821 160 

Ludwell a. Gains, August, 1821 229 

John Thompson, July, 1821 80 

Demas L. McFarland, August, 1821 160 

Demas L. McFarland, July, 1821 160 

Aaron Wright, May, 1823 109 

Levi Hoffman, August, 1821 llli 

Cornelius Hoffman, August, 1821 112J 

Levi Beebee, July, 1821 160 

Seth Goodwin, July, 1821 80 

Toion 14 Xorth, Runge 3 Easl. 

Joseph Beeler, George H. Beeler, July, 1821 131 

Samuel Winter, August, 1S21 49 

Elijah Elliott, July, 1821 160 

Azel Dollarhide, July, 1S21 107 

Azel Dollarhide, July, 1821 107 

Evan Dollarhide, August, 1821 74i 

Zirnri Brown, November, 1822 40 

Charles Beeler, March, 1824 47i 

Charles Beeler, September, 1826 106 

Seth Curtis, July, 1821 60 

Seth Curtis, October, 1822 106 

Seth Curtis, July, 1821 55i 

Seth Curtis, October, 1822 67i 

Seth Curtis, October, 1822 106i 

Sibert Waugh, August, 1821 53 

Levi Wooster, August, 1821 53 

John Cox, December, 1823 66J 

Martin D. Bush, June, 1821 240 

Town 15 North, Range 2 Enel. 

Cader Carter, June, 1823 80 

John Rozier, October, 1824 80 

Levi Hoffman, September, 1821 80 

Christopher Ault, December, 1825 80 

Adam Rozicr, December, 1825 80 

John McCreery, April, 1824 SO 

Parker Keeler, April, 1824 80 

Joshua Compton, June, 1824 80 

Peter Hoffman, December, 1825 80 

Henry Ault, February, 1825 80 

Charles Merritt, August, 1825 80 

Charles Merritt, December, 1826 80 

Charles Merritt, April, 1822 80 

Peter Hoffman, December, 1825 80 

John Kenworlhy, July, 1824 160 

Caleb Cook, November, 1822 , 160 

Jesse Hawkins, December, 1822 80 

Reason Reagan, April, 1825 80 

Wayne Township. 
Town 15 Xorlh, Range 2 Easl. 

Joseph Frazee, July, 1821 169 

Nicholas Hendricks, October, 1821 85.5 

James Parker, January, 1822 85.5 

David Cassett, July, 1821 160 

John Gallaher, July, 1821 160 

James Parker, January, 1822 84 

John M. Jamison, January, 1822 160 

William Castolo, May, 1822 166 

Samuel Castolo, May, 1822 80 

William Gladden, December, 1821 165 



Name and Date. Acres. 

William Gladden, November, 1822 82 

John Moore, February, 1824 82 

Samuel Castolo, May, 1822 80 

John Houghton, November, 1822 80 

John Houghton, November, 1822 160 

Reuben Houghton, November, 1822 160 

Reuben Houghton, November, 1822 80 

Sarah Barnhill, January, 1822 80 

John Miller, October, 1820 80 

Moses Silvery, September, 1822 80 

John Fawcett. October, 1822 160 

Joseph Scott, November, 1822 160 

J. R.Crumbaugh, John Skinner, August, 1821.... 80 

Franklin C. Averill, October, 1821 80 

Jacob Railsback, July, 1821 160 

Obadiah Harris, December, 1826 80 

Joseph Scott, April, 1825 80 

Joseph Scott, January, 1823 160 

Joseph Scott, February, 1823 80 

Joseph Scott, January, 1823 80 

Robert Furnas, November, 1822 80 

Robert Furnas, November, 1822 80 

Caleb Easterling, November. 1822 SO 

Isaac Furnas, November. 1822 160 

John Furnas, November, 1822 160 

John Porter, November, 1822 160 

William McVey, December, 1825 SO 

William McVey, September, 1829 SO 

John Byrkett, December, 1826 SO 

.Toseph Scott, January, 1823 80 

James Rhoads, October, 1821 80 

Joseph Scott, January, 1823 80 

John Hendricks, March, 1823 SO 

Andrew Hoover, May, 1823 80 

James Rhoads, January, 1822 80 

Andrew Hoover, December, 1825 80 

Town 16 North, Range 2 Eatt. 

Enoch D. Woodbridge, August, 1821 160 

Jacob P. Andrew. December, 1825 80 

Jacob P.Andrew, December, 1825 80 

John M. Strong, August, 1821 160 

John Adams, October, 1823 80 

Enoch Railsback, December, 1825 SO 

William Ivers, January, 1822 80 

Robert Barnhill, July, 1821 160 

Robert Barnhill, July, 1821 160 

Robert Barnhill, July, 1821 160 

George Avery, April, 1824 SO 

John Fox, April, 1824 80 

Enoch Railsback, December, 1825 80 

Enoch Railsback, June, 1830 SO 

Jesse Lane, December, 1822 80 

Jesse Lane, July, 1821 160 

Merrick Sayre, R. Armstrong, September, 1822... 80 

James Logan, March, 1S24 80 

John Stoops, August, 1821 80 

Robert Stoops, August, 1821 SO 

Isaac Pugh, August, 1821 80 

William Criswell, August, 1821 80 

John Hall, August, 1821 80 

Stephen H. Robinson, August, 1821 80 

Isaac Pugh, August, 1821 160 

James Miller, July, 1821 160 

Jacob Pugh, August, 1821 80 



ORIGINAL ENTRIES OF LANDS IN THE COUNTY. 



63 



Name and Date. Acres. 

Jacob Pugli, July, 1821 80 

Jacob Pugh, July, 1S2I 160 

Jacob Pugh, July, 1821 160 

Robert Barnhill, July, 1S21 160 

Robert Barnhill, July, 1821 160 

Asa B. Strong, August, 1821 160 

Jeremiah J. Corbaley, August, 1821 80 

Jeremiah J. Corbaley, September, 1821 80 

William Adams, June, 1824 80 

James Adams, August, 1825 80 

Joel Conroe, August, 1821 80 

James L. Givan, December, 1821 80 

Uriah Hultz, October, 1821 160 

- Francis McClelland, July, 1821 160 

Israel Phillips, October, 1821 160 

Hans Murdough, October, 1822 80 

Reuben Houghton, November, 1822 80 

Adam Kemple, October, 1821 SO 

Jacob Moyer, September, 1821 160 

Francis McClelland, October, 1822 80 

Bartis Boots, March, 1826 80 

Aaron Masterton, June, 1825 80 

Hans Murdough, October, 1822 80 

Jacob Pugh, August, 1821 80 

Martin Martindale, July, 1821 80 

James Andrew, Jr., July, 1821 SO 

James Andrew, Sr., July, 1821 80 

George L. Kinnard, May, 1825 80 

Archibald Boyle, January, 1825 80 

Archibald Boyle, January, 1825 80 

Hiram HornaJay, November, 1822 80 

Martin Martindale, July, 1821 160 

Martin Martindale, August, 1821 SO 

Martin Martindale, September, 1822 80 

Samuel Johnston, July, 1821 160 

Lewis Smith, May, 1826 80 

Martin Martindale, December, 1829 80 

Town 15 North, Ranfje 3 Enxt. 

Jesse McKay and Joseph Frazee, July, 1821 174 

Jesse McKay and Joseph Frazee, July, 1821 177 

Enoch Warman, July, 1821 160 

Rezin Hammond, July, 1821 160 

Joseph Hanna, July, 1821 87 

John Holmes, July, 1821 87 

Noah Noble, July, 1821 180 

Israel Harding, July, 1821 160 

Noah Noble and Enoch McCarty, July, 1821 160 

Samuel Harding, July, 1821 180 

Amos Higgins, July, 1821 107 

Noah Noble and Enoch McCarty, July, 1821 80 

John Holmes, July, 1821 80 

John Holmes, July, 1821 55 

Jesse Cole, July, 1821 160 

Jesse Cole, July, 1821 160 

Gilbert Fuller, July, 1821 104 

James Oliver, July, 1821 160 

Amos Higgins, July, 1821 160 

Thomas Clarke, July, 1821 80 

David Hardman, July, 1821 80 

Frederick Waltz, July, 1821 160 

Enoch AVarman, July, 1821 80 

Obadiah Harris, 1821 SO 

Obadiah Harris, July, 1821 80 

Abel Potter, July, 1821 ." SO 



Name and Date. Acres. 

Jonathan Lyon, July, 1821 160 

lehabod Corwin, July, 1821 160 

Solomon Stewart, July, 1821 160 

John Fox, October, 1822 80 

Amos Higgins and James Burns, July, 1821 160 

James W. Johnston, October, 1821 160 

Hannah Skinner, July, 1821 80 

Lawrence Miller, October, 1821 80 

James W. Johnston, October, 1821 160 

Samuel Covington, January, 182.S 51 

George Bell, October, 1S21 51 

Joshua Glover, October, 1S21 103 

Daniel Closser, October, 1823 80 

Jesse Jackson, November, 1821 80 

John Byrkett, December, 1825 104 

Daniel Closser, July, 1821 80 

Daniel Closser, September, 1821 80 

Daniel Closser, February, 1823 53 

John Hendricks, March, 1823 53 

Andrew Hoover, July, 1821 80 

John Miller, July, 1821 80 

John Miller, July, 1821 80 

John Miller, August, 1821 80 

William McClary, July, 1821 160 

Abraham Miller, July, 1821 160 

Levi Beebee, July, 1821 160 

Noah Wright, July, 1821 160 

Levi Beebee, July, 1821 160 

Luke Bryan, April, 1824 SO 

Daniel Closser, February, 1S24 80 

Town 16 North, Ranye 3 East. 

Isaac Kelly, August, 1821 80 

John Fox, July, 1821 160 

William Wolverton, April, 1822 80 

Frederick Hartman, July, 1821 80 

Isaac Kelly, August, 1821 80 

John C. Lane, August, 1S21 80 

William D. Jones, August, 1821 80 

William McCaw, August, 1821 160 

John Carr, July, 1821 77 

John Carr, July, 1821 66 

John Carr, July, 1821 3 

Archibald C. Keed, July, 1821 160 

Jonathan Lyon, July, 1821 142 

Elial T. Foote, July, 1821 6 

Jonathan Lyon, July, 1821 160 

Samuel Hoover, July,182I 80 

Abraham Coble, Jr, July, 1821 80 

Jonas Hoover, October, 1823 80 

Benjamin McCarty .and James Wiley, July, 1821.. 160 

William Walker, July, 1821 80 

John Senours, October, 1823 SO 

Levi Beebee, July, 1821 160 

John Biggs, August, 1821 55 

Martin Martindale, August, 1821 55 

Benjamin McCarty, Sr., July, 1821 160 

Dempsey Reeves, July, 1S21 54 

Samuel Johnston, July, 1 821 54 

Joseph Hanna, July, 1821 80 

David Stoops, July, 1821 80 

David Stoops, July, 1821 SO 

William Stoops, August, 1823 80 

George H. and Joseph Beeler, July, 1821 160 

Thomas G. Noble, July, 1821 160 



i>4 



HISTOEY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



Acre 



Name «nd Date. 

Elial T. Foote, July, 1821 43 

Jonathan Lyon and Thomas Anderson, July, 1821 95 

John AVolf, July. 1S2I SO 

Joseph S. Benham, July, 1821 80 

Jesse McKay and Jarret Van Blaricum, July, 1821 160 

Pike Township. 
Town 16 North, Range 2 East. 

Seth Rhodabaugh, June, 182.3 80 

David McCurdy, September, 1822 75 

Isaac Pugh, August. 1821 75 

David McCurdy, September, 1821 160 

Isaac Pugh, August, 1821 75 

George Muse 

Abraham McCorkle, May, 1825 SO 

Abraham McCorkle, May, 1825 .,... SO 

Sarah Barnhill, April, 182.3 80 

Jacob Whitinger, June, 1823 80 

Thomas Jones, April, 1823 80 

John Jones, December, 1822 80 

Anthony Swaim, March, 1824 160 

David McCurdy, December, 1825 80 

David McCurdy, September, 1821... 160 

David McCurdy, September, 1824 80 

David McCurdy, March, 1822 160 

Aaron Gullifcr, November, 1822 SO 

Aaron Gullifer, February, 1824 SO 

Valentine Kinoyer, December, 1825 80 

David Fo.'j, October, 1823 80 

Thomas Burns, October, 1S21 80 

David McCurdy, September, 1821 'lOO 

Thomas Burns, October, 182 1 80 

Thomas Burns, October, 1821 80 

Thomas Burns, August, 1821 ;. 80 

Toxon 16 North, Range 3 East. 

John Fo.\-, April, 1824 80 

Amos Robertson, July, 1821 " 150 

Seth Rhodabaugh, December, 1825 52 

Aaron Gullifer, June, 1823 56 

William AV. Wilson, March, 1823 112 

Joseph Staten, January, 1823 SO 

Joseph S. Benham, July, 1821 160 

Joseph S. Benham, July, 1821 80 

John Fisher, July, 1S21 160 

John Fisher, July, 1821 160 

Martin Davinport, February, 1825 30 

Martin Davinport, February, 1825 56 

7*01011 17 North, Range 2 East. 

James Harman, October, 1823 80 

Chesley Wray, September, 1822 80 

John B. Harmon, November, 1S22 160 

David McCurdy, April, 1823 SO 

Elijah Fox, September, 1822 80 

Henry Jackson, August, 1825 80 

David McCurdy, September, 1822 160 

David McCurdy, September, 1822 80 

David McCurdy, September, 1822 SO 

David McCurdy, September, 1822 160 

James Duncan, December, 1823 80 

Alexus Jackson, September, 1822 SO 

William Conner, September, 1S22 80 

John Duncan, December, 1S23 80 

John Railsback, September, 1822 160 



Name and Date. Acres. 

John Railsback, September, 1822 80 

David Wilson, December, 1825 SO 

Robert Rhea, September, 1822 80 

Washington Township. 
Toxon 16 NortJi, Range 3 East. 

Jesse McKay and Jacob Collip, July, 1821 160 

Jesse McKay and Jacob Collip, July, 1821 160 

Andrew Jones, July. 1821 150 

Andrew Jones, July, 1821 160 

John Pugh, July, 1821 59 

Alexander Pugh, August, 1S21 120 

Alexander Pugh, August, 1821 76 

Joseph Swett, June, 1823 76 

Samuel Stephens, April, 1823. 76 

Isaac Stephens, April, 1823 

Andrew Jones, July, 1821 160 

Jacob Miers, October, 1823 155 

John Fo.\, October, 1822 80 

Jeremiah Roberts, November, 1822 80 

Nimrod Ferguson, December, 1823 80 

John T. Ba.sye, February, 1824 80 

John Fox, October, 1822 SO 

Eli Wright, November, 1.S23 80 

John Roberts, Jr., November, 1822 80 

Jeremiah and Edward Roberts, November, 1822.. 80 

Xoah Leaverton, July, 1821 71 

Edward Roberts, November, 1822 80 

Joseph ."^wett, June, 1823 6 

John Pugh, July, 1821 77 

Lismund Basye, October, 1821 55 

Andrew Jones, October, 1821 61 

Andrew Jones, July, 1821 94 

David Huston, July, 1821 160 

William Jones, July, 1821 SO 

j David Huston, July, 1821 80 

i Jesse McKay and Jacob Collip, July, 1821 160 

' Henry Hardin, July, 1821 60 

1 Jacob Wright, July, 1S21 SO 

1- William Hardin, July, 1821 160 

I William Sanders, July, 1821 80 

i Daniel Aiken, July, 1821 80 

j Daniel McDonald, July, 1821 160 

Simeon Slawson, July, 1S21 160 

I Rezin Hammond, July, 1821 160 

Rezin Hammond, July, 1821 80 

Isaac Stipp, July, 1821 SO 

James Givan, July, 1821 l60 

William Appleton, July, 1821 70 

Thomas McOuat, October, 1821 78 

Jonas Hoover, July, 1821 80 

Sylvanus Halsey, July, 1821 80 

Thomas McOuat, October, 1821 SO 

William Sanders, July, 1821 80 

William Sanders, July, 1821 89 

Jacob Whitinger, July, 1821 60 

Jacob Whitinger, July, 1821 73 

Samuel McCormick, April, 1823 78 

AViUiam Sanders, July, 1821 89 

Joseph S. Benham, July, 1821 74 

Ephraim D. Reed, July, 1821 67 

William C. Vanblaricum, July, 1821 59 

Tnnin 16 North, Range i East. 

James Griswold, December, 1825 63 

Philip Ray, July, 1821 160 



ORIGINAL ENTRIES OF LANDS IN THE COUNTY. 



65 



Name and DatB. Acres. ,^=- 

Philip Ray, July, 1S21 SO 4 

James Ellis, November, 1S24 80 i 

William Tucker, July, 1821 138 5 

Enoeli Clark, Xovember, 1S21 68 5 

Elijah Fox, July, 1821 68 5 

John Jarrett, August, 1821 160 5 

Nicholas Criss, October, 1823 80 5 

William Bacon, July, 1821 80 5 

Elijah Fox, July, 1821 68 6 

Hezekiah Smith, July, 1821 68 6 

Jonas Huffman, July, 1821 128 6 

William Bacon, July, 1821 80 6 

Robert Dickerson, March, 1822 80 6 

Moses Huffman, March, 1822 75 6 

William Rector. July, 1821 T5 6 

William Bacon, July, 1821 80 7 

Lewis Nichols, October, 1821 80 7 

Robert Smith, October, 1821 75 7 

Christian Hager, July, 1821 75 7 

William Hardin, July, 1821 80 7 

William McCleery, July, 1821 80 7 

William McCIeery, July, 1821 150 7 

Abraham Epler, July, 1821 160 8 

James Williams, July, 1821 80 8 

Richard Williams, July, 1821 80 8 

John McClung, July, 1821 160 8 

John Hendricks, July, 1821 160 8 

James Templer, August, 1821 80 9 

Enoch Clark, July, 1821 SO 9 

Christian Hager, July, 1821 160 9 

John Whittaker, October, 1821 160 9 

Jonas Huffman, July, 1821 160 9 

Daniel Rumple, May, 1822 80 17 

Joseph Bartholomew and Rezin Hammond, July, 

1821 80 17 

Joseph Bartholomew and Rezin Hammond, .July, 

1821 160 17 

Joseph Bartholomew and Rezin Hammond, July, 

1821 80 17 

Joseph Bartholomew and Rezin Hammond, July, 

1821 80 17 

William D. Rooker, July, 1821 80 17 

Henry Hardin, July, 1821 160 IS 

William Hardin, July, 1821 75 18 

William D. Rooker, July, 1821 75 18 

Samuel Glass, July, 1821 160 18 

Jeremiah Johnson, July, 1821 76 18 

Rezin Hammond, July, 1821 76 18 

Toion 17 Jforth, Range 3 Fast. 

John Vincent, September, 1822 80 13 

Thomas Todd, October, 1S24 80 13 

Jacob Whitinger, September, 1823 80 23 

Jacob Whitinger, September, 1822 80 24 

Abraham Bowen, September, 1822 SO 24 

J.acob Whitinger, September, 1822 80 24 

Jacob Whitinger, September, 1822 SO 24 

William Hob.son, September, 1822 SO 24 

Jacob Whitinger, September, 1822 81 25 

Levi Wright, September, 1822 55 25 

Levi Wright, September, 1822 77 25 

Levi Wright, September, 1822 62 25 

Samuel Ray, November, 1822 67 25 

James Bonnell, September, 1822 147 25 

James Bonnell, August, 1823 SO 26 

5 



Name and Date. Acres. 

John Roberts, November, 1822 160 

Joseph Gladden, September, 1822 109 

Thomas Ellis, February, 1824 86 

Samuel and Jeremiah Johnson, April, 1823 50 

Elijah Dawson, November, 1822 106 

James Young, September, 1822 139 

James Young, September, 1822 63 

Charles Rector, March, 1825 45 

Jonas Huffman, September, 1822 60 

Jesse McKay and John Collip, September, 1822... 88 

Jesse McKay and John Collip, September, 1822... 59 

Town 17 North, Range 4 East. 

Morgan Parr, November, 1822 80 

George Midsker, December, 1823 80 

Thomas Reagan,.September, 1822 19 

William Sanders, September, 1822 127 

George Midsker, December, 1823 140 

Eliakim Harding, September, 1822 160 

Jacob Whitinger, September, 1822 160 

Joseph Coats, December, 1822 SO 

Lewis Huffman, September, 1822 80 

John Vincent, September, 1822 80 

Jacob Whitinger, September, 1822 147 

Jacob AVhitinger, September, 1822 161 

Jacob Whitinger, September, 1822 141 

Jacob Whitinger, September, 1822 160 

Thomas Reagan, September, 1822 Ill 

Thomas Reagan, September, 1822 117 

Thomas Reagan, September, 1822 160 

Thomas Reagan, September, 1822 160 

Jacob Whitinger, September, 1822 26 

William Sanders, September, 1822 26 

Joseph Coats, October, 1823 80 

Joseph Coiits, September, 1822 160 

William Wilkinson, November, 1823 80 

Michael West, October, 1822 80 

Silas Moppit, November, 1823 80 

Jacob Burkitt, September, 1822 80 

William Coats, November, 1822 80 

Thomas Brunson, December, 1825 80 

James Tarr, September, 1822 80 

Fielding Jeter, September, 1822 137 

Jacob Whitinger, September, 1822 119 

John G. Mcllvain, July, 1824 80 

John 6. Mcllvain, March, 1824 40 

James McNutt, October, 1S22 77 

Levi Wright, September, 1822 83 

Levi Wright, September, 1822 80 

Charles Daily, September, 1822 80 

Charles Daily, September, 1822 80 

Eliakim Harding, September, 1822 80 

Hiram Bacon, September, 1822 160 

Jonath.an Hawkins, September, 1822 160 

Aaron Carter, September, 1822 160 

William Bacon, November, 1822 80 

Harlan Carter, September, 1822 160 

William Bacon, November, 1822 160 

Lavtrence Township. 
Town 16 North, Range 4 Eait. 

Hugh Beard, November, 1822 74 

John Johnson, July, 1825 71 

John Johnson, July, 1824 74 

Samuel Marrow, August, 1824 71 



66 



HISTORY OP INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



Niime and Date. Acres. 

WilMam Hardin, July, 1821 142 

William Hardin, July, 1821 141 

Ephraim Morrison, August, 1824 70 

Robert McClaine, September, 1S21 70 

Peter Casteter, October, IS21 69 

William McCIaren, Jr., April, 1S24 69 

David Sheets, March, 1824 SO 

Daniel Ballinger, October, 1823 80 

Daniel Ballinger, October, 1823 80 

Philip Rny, July, 1821 80 

Adam Eller, August, 1824 80 

Leonard Eller, April, 1825 80 

James Templer, August, 1821 SO 

David Jamison, Jr., June, 1S24 160 

William D. Rooker, April, 1823 160 

John North, September, 1823 80 

John North, September, 1823 160 

Leonard Eller, April, 1825 80 

Joseph Eller, March, 1824 80 

John Eller, March, 1824 SO 

Robert Kelley, December, 1822 80 

Town 17 Xorlh, linnije 4 Eail. 

Gilbert A. Cheney, March, 1825 40 

Jesse Enlow, October, 1822 160 

Joshua Reddick, December, 1825 80 

Robert Warren, October, 1824 80 

Town 17 North, Ranije 5 Eaal. 

John and Daniel Runs, February, 1824 80 

James Wilson, December, 1825 160 

Christian Beaver, October, 1824 80 

Daniel Rumpal, October, 1824 80 

Christian Beaver, October, 1824 80 

Daniel Rumple, October, 1824 80 

Jesse Enlow, October, 1822 160 

Warrex Township. 
Town 15 Xorlh, Range 4 £o«t. 

Joseph Charles, November, 1822 80 

Samuel Ferguson, January, 1825 SO 

David E. Wade, March, 1824 SO 

William Ferguson, February, 1825 64 

Asa Grewell, December, 1823 80 

William Riley, December, 1825 80 

Jacob W. Fisher, October, 1822 160 

William Clemens, August, 1S21 136 

William Clemens, August, 1S21 70 

Michael and Zinna Skinner, August, 1821 70 

Jacob Sowduski, January, 1822 160 

Jacob Sowduski, January, 1822 80 

John Wilson, October, 1821 SO 

Joshua Stephens, October, 1824 SO 

Benjamin Atherton, December, 1823 SO 

Edward Heizer, August, 1823 80 

Edward White, December, 1823 SO 

John Hall, October, 1821 160 

William J. Morrison, December, IS25 80 

Andrew Morehouse, August, 1823 160 

Jacob Sowdusky, August, 1824 80 

David Buckhannon, February, 1824 80 

Joel Blaeklidge, October, 1823 80 

Ambrose Shirley, November, 1S22 80 

Edward Morin, December, 1825 SO 

William Morin, December, 1825 SO 



Name and Date. Acres. 

William S. Whitaker, October, 1824 80 

John Grewel, December, 1823 80 

Samuel Ferguson, January, 1825 80 

Henry Brady, December, 1S23 SO 

Benjamin Atherton, December, 1823 80 

Jacob Blaeklidge, October, 1823 80 

Andrew Morehouse, March, 1824 80 

Jacob Sowduski, August, 1S24 80 

Robert Brown, February, 1824 SO 

John W. Redding, January, 1823 160 

Levi Becbee, July, 1821 160 

James Doylo, March, 1822 180 

James Doyle, January, 1822 160 

Jacob Daringer, November, 1823 160 

David Buckhannon, February, 1824 80 

Archibald C. Reed, August, 1824 80 

Town 15 North, Range 5 East. 

Lorenzo Dow, May, 1S26 56 

William Sanders, December, 1S25 80 

Samuel Fullen, October, 1825 80 

Luke Bryan, December, 1825 56 

Luke Bryan, December, 1825 55 

Luke Bryan, December, 1825 55 

Calvin Fletcher, James Rariden, November, 1826.. 80 

Cornelius Williams, December, 1825 SO 

James Holliday, April, 1822 160 

Stephen Brown, November, 1826 112 

Joseph Bray, December, 1825 SO 

Cornelius Williams, December, 1825 80 

Stephen Brown, November, 1826 160 

Stephen Brown, November, 1826 113 

Stephen Brown, November, 1826 87 

Stephen Brown, November, 1826 160 

Willoughby Conner, September, 1826 43 

Joseph Charles, November, 1822 43 

Daniel Yandes, November, 1824 63 

Demas L. McFarland, December, 1825 80 

James Harris, November, 1824 SO 

Polly Holliday, January, 1823 80 

James Holliday, April, 1S22 80 

Jacob Blaeklidge, November, 1823 160 

Samuel Ferguson and John Pogue, January, 1825 80 

John Ketley, December, 1825 80 

Benjamin Sailor, March, 1823 80 

Bishop k Stevens, January, 1825 SO 

Benjamin Sailor, March, 1823 80 

Benjamin Sailor, April, 1S23 SO 

Samuel Beeler, August, 1823 80 

Nathan Harlan, October, 1823 80 

Town 16 North, Range 4 EiikI. 

Robert Kelley, December, 1S25 SO 

Jacob Mason, August, 1822 80 

William Vanlaningham, March, 1822 SO 

Harris Tyner, January, 1823 80 

David Shields, December, 1821 160 

Thomas Askren, September, 1825 IfiO 

Razain Hawkins, August, 1825 80 

Razain Hawkins, .-iugust, 1825 SO 

Fraxklix Towxship. 
Town 14 North, Range 4 East. 

Nehemiah Smith, December, 1825 SO 

Abraham Lemasters, February, 1825 80 



tion. 
12 



ORIGINAL ENTRIES OP LANDS IN THE COUNTY. 



67 



Name and Date. Acres. 

Luke Bryan, December, 1825 80 

Luke Bryan, April, 1825 SO 

Luke Bryan, April, 1S25 SO 

Town 14 North, Banr/e 5 East. 

Jeremiah Bernight, February, 1823 78 

Moses Huffman, March, 1S22 78 

William Rector, January, 1822 78 

John Dawson, January, 1823 80 

Benjamin Rector, March, 1825 SO 

Powlcr Hibs, December, 1825 SO 

Hugh Beard, December, 1825 80 

John Dawson, January, 1823 160 

Peter Mann, October, 1822 80 

William Rector, January, 1822 SO 

Jacob W. Fisher, October, 1822 160 

Andrew O.Porter, October, 1821 160 

Peter Carberry, July, 1822 80 

John Dawson, January, 1823 160 

Jacob Smock, December, 1824 40 

William Morris, December, 1S24 40 

Town 15 North, Range 4 East. 
Robert McCather and Isaac Erazleton, December, 

1825 80 

Stephen Yager, December, 1825 80 

George Smith, April, 1825 80 

William Townsend, December, 1825 160 

Toicn 15 North, Range 5 East. 

John Patterson, November, 1821 80 

John Patterson, November, 1821 80 

Josiah Bisbee, July, 1821 80 

Charles W. Wilson, August, 1821 80 

Michael Cloyd, August, 1821 80 

Isaiah Bisbee, July, 1S21 SO 

Michael Cloyd, August, 1821 80 

Reuben Adams, October, 1824 160 

Reuben Adams, February, 1S25 80 

Charles W. Wilson, August, 1821 160 

William Griffith, October, 1S24 160 

Perby Township. 

Town 14 North, Range 3 East. 

Henry D. Bell, October, 1821 154 

Isaac Kelly, August, 1821 152 

Peyton Bristow, May, 1S23 80 

Henry Riddle, September, 1824 80 

Henry Riddle, September, 1822 80 

Elijah T. Foote, July, 1821 75 

Elijah T. Foote, July, 1821 75 

Peyton Bristow, May, 1823 80 

Peyton Bristow, August, 1821 160 

John Johnston, July, 1821 74 

Philip W. Sparger, October, 1821 80 

John Bowen, December, 1821 80 

John Watts, October, 1821 80 

David C. Cassett, July, 1821 80 

Rudy Daily, March, 1823 69 

Rudy Daily, March, 1823 85 

Elijah Elliott, July, 1821 88 

Martin D. Bush, July, 1S2I 80 

James Martin, July, 1823 80 

Richard Watts, July, 1821 160 



Name and Date. Acrea. 

Henry Myers, August, 1821.... 80 

Denipsey Overman, July, 1S21 160 

John Watts, July, 1821 160 

Henry Alcorn, July, 1821 80 

Henry Alcorn, July, 1821 80 

Martin Riley, July, 1821 So 

James Burns, July, 1821 80 

David Marrs, October, 1821 80 

Cline Roland, December, 1825 80 

Dempsey Overman, July, 1821 SO 

Jacob Pence, August, 1822 80 

James Cully, July, 1S21 SO 

James Cully, July, 1821 80 

Thomas Shelton, December, 1825 SO 

David Marrs, October, 1821 160 

Robert Murpby, April, 1825 80 

Jacob Pence, August, 1822 80 

Samuel True, December, 1825 80 

Samuel Dabney, December, 1823 80 

Samuel Dabney, September, 1825 SO 

Richard Good, February, 1S25 SO 

Jacob Fullenweider, December, 1825 80 

Henry Alcorn, March, 1831 SO 

Samuel Dabney, December, 1825 80 

Moses F. Glenn, May, 1822 80 

George Vandegriff, July, 1821 80 

William McBride, July, 1825 80 

Joseph Smith, December, 1822 160 

Anthony W. Bowen, December, 1821 80 

Henry Hardin, May, 1822 160 

Robert Hunt, July, 1821 80 

Robert Hunt, July, 1821 160 

Hezekiah Smart, August, 1.S22 160 

Hezekiah Smart, December, 1823 80 

Town 14 North, Range 4 East. 

Robert White, December, 1824 73 

Thomas Carle, September, 1S25 73 

Thomas Bryant, April, 1325 147 

Mary Aldridge, February, 1825 80 

Jacob Turner, September, 1S25 SO 

Jacob Turner and Thos. Bryant, December, 1S25. SO 

Peter Demott, November, 1826 147 

Isaac Helms, October, 1824 71 

Baker F. Ewing, March, 1825 79 

John Danner, June, 1S23 79 

Francis Vorie, December, 1825 158 

JacobSmock, May, 1S22 80 

Samuel Brewer, October, 1823 80 

Luke Bryan, December, 1825 160 

Luke Bryan, December, 1825 SO 

Abraham Lemasters, December, 1825 80 

Gerrardus R. Bobbins, November, 1822 160 

Jacob Smock, M.iy, 1822 SO 

Samuel Smock, November, 1826 80 

Nehemiah Smith, December, 1825 80 

William McClain, December, 1825 80 

Robert Brenton, August, 1822 160 

Cornelius Demott, May, 1822 160 

Randal Litsey, October, 1822 160 

Randal Litsey, October, 1822 160 

William Sanders, August, 1825 SO 

William Sanders, December, 1825 80 

David Brewer, December 1S24 80 

Daniel A. Brewer, December, 1824 160 



68 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



Town 15 North. Range 3 East. 

Name and Date. Acres. 

Simeon Smock, October, 1S21 160 

John McFall, August, 1821 160 

Lewis Nichols, October, 1821 80 

Peter Demott, October, 1821 80 

Peter Demott, October, 1S21 80 

Henry Brenton, August, 1821 80 

George Marquis, November, 1824 80 

John Shaffer, August,1821 80 

Lewis Davis, August, 1821 160 

James Andrew, Jr., July, 1821 SO 

Isaac Senseney, August, 1821 80 

Abraham Lemasters, July, 1821 80 

Joseph S. Benham, July, 1821 80 

Lewis Davis, August, 1821 80 

William Vandegriff, July, 1821 30 

William Sanders, July, 1821 160 

William Sanders, June, 1822 43 

Richard Vest, November, 1821 70 

Samuel Whitcher, April, 1822 139 

Emanuel Glympse, March, 1823 80 

William Myers, July, 1821 160 

William Sanders, January, 1823 80 

John D. Lutz, August, 1821 80 

William Townsend, July, 1821 160 

George Norwood, July, 1821 160 

Abraham Lemasters, July, 1821 160 

Amos Cook, July, 1821 160 

Henry Ballinger, July, 1821 160 

John Smock, July, 1821 160 

Henry Brenton, August, 1821 80 

David Marrs, October, 1821 80 

John Poole, July, 1821 160 

Town 15 North, Range i East. 

Williams. Hughey, April, 1825 80 

Nathan AUdridge, November, 1823 80 

Susannah, Jacob, and Azariah Mosly, February, 

1823 SO 

James Thompson, June, 1824 160 

William Arnold, August, 1824 160 

James McLaughlin. July, 1823 80 

Sarah Jane Smith, December, 1825 160 

Lawrence Demott, October, 1821 157 

Henry Comingore, November, 1822 156 

John Smock, August, 1821 80 

Richard Corwine, July, 182] 15T 

John Smock, July, 1821 160 

Stephen Miller, January, 1822 159 

S. G. Huntington, August, 1821 80 

S. S. Huntington, August, 1821 80 

John Smock, August, 1821 80 

Milton White, October, 1824 80 

Milton White, September, 1824 80 

Jacob Coffman, August, 1821 160 

Benjamin L. Crothers, August, 1821 160 

George Petro, August, 1821 80 



tion. 
25 
25 



CHAPTER IV. 

Social Condition of the Early Settlers — Amusements — Religious 
Worship — Music — General Description of Pioneer Life in 
Marion County — Diseases once Prevalent — Causes of Dimin- 
ution. 

Thus far this history has followed as closely as any 
record, or accurate memory, or other authentic ac- 
count would permit, the course of events in the first 
settlement and growth of the town and county up 
to the opening of the year 1825, occasionally pausing 
to group about some conspicuous locality or occur- 
rence such incidents of the later history as closely 
connected themselves with it, and presented at a 
single view a summary of the subject, which would 
be less intelligible if broken up by scattering the 
points about in chronological order. Brief biograph- 
ical references also have been introduced with the 
first appearance of citizens who were then or sub- 
sequently became conspicuous for services to the 
community. But there is a good deal more of the 
history of any State or town than appears in its 
public records and the accounts of its material growth 
and development. How the people lived, worked, and 
amused themselves is quite as much to the purpose 
of a faithful chronicle as the building of mills, open- 
ing streets, and holding courts. For the first two dec- 
ades of the existence of the town and the settlement 
about it the social conditions were so little changed 
that an account of any part of that period will be no 
misfit for any other part. The changes towards x;ity 
development and conditions were not distinctly shown 
till the impulse of improvement that ran a little 
ahead of the first railway began to operate. There- 
fore the incidents, anecdotes, and descriptions in this 
division of the work are used as illustrative of a 
period of substantially unchanging conditions, and 
not of any particular year or condition. They are 
substantially true of any year for two decades or 
thereabouts. 

For the first few years the relations of the settlers 
and Indians were occasional points of interest or 
alarm. One or two incidents will show that the 
New Purchase was not difi"erent in its chances of 
Indian trouble from settlements beyond the Missis- 



SOCIAL CONDITION OF THE EARLY SETTLERS. 



69 



sippi twenty years ago, and beyond the Rocky Moun- 
tains now. Mr. Nowland describes one of these ' 
incidents : " John McCormick kept the first tavern 
or place of entertainment in the place, and provided 
for the commissioners a portion of the time when 
they were here for the purpose of locating the 
capital. His house stood on the east or left bank 
of the river, a few steps below where the National 
road now crosses it. One bright sunny morning 
about the middle of March my father and I took 
a walk to the river. When within about fifty yards 
of the cabin of Mr. McCormick we heard cries of 
' Help ! Murder !' coming from the house. We ran, 
and by the time we got there several men had 
arrived. A well-known and desperate Delaware, 
called ' Big Bottle,' from the fact that he generally 
carried a large bottle hung to his belt, had come to 
the opposite side of the river and commanded Mrs. 
McCormick to bring the canoe over for him. This 
she refused to do, knowing that he wanted whiskey, 
and when drinking was a dangerous Indian. He 
set his gun against a tree, plunged into the river, 
and swam over, and when we reached the house was 
ascending the bank, tomahawk in hand, preparatory 
to cutting his way through the door, which Mrs. 
McCormick had barricaded. At the sight of the 
men he desisted, and said he only wished to ' scare 
white squaw.' He was taken back to his own side 
of the river in a canoe, and admonished that if he 
attempted to scare the ' white squaw' again her hus- 
band would kill him. This rather irritated him. 
He flourished his scalping-knife towards her, and 
intimated by signs from her head to his belt that he 
would take her scalp." 

Not far from the time of this pleasing incident of 
aboriginal amiability another of a more serious char- 
acter occurred, illustrating the inevitable proclivity 
of whites to cheat Indians, and the very probable 
efi'ect of the cheat when discovered. Mr. Now- 
land is authority for the story. " Robert Wilmot, 
the second merchant (Daniel Shaffer was a little 
earlier), had a small stock of Indian trinkets, and 
for a short time carried on trade with the Indians, 
but a little occurrence frightened him, and he soon 
returned to Georgetown, Ky., his former residence. 



A Delaware Indian named Jim Lewis had pledged 
some silver hat-bands (there is something to open 
the eyes of the ' dudes' of 1883 [) to Wilmot for 
goods, and was to return in two moons to redeem 
them. He kept his word, but when he came back 
Wilmot had sold the bands to another Indian, which 
so exasperated Lewis that he threatened if he ever 
caught Wilmot going alone to his corn-field he would 
take his scalp. This frightened him so much that 
he never would go alone, but often requested and 
was accompanied by Dr. Livingston Dunlap. His 
alarm grew so serious finally that he sold out and 
returned to Kentucky. As it was pretty generally 
known that Lewis was the murderer of the white 
man found near the Blufis, on an island of the river, 
this threat against Wilmot had a tendency to alarm 
and put on their guard other settlers." 

The Indians had been greatly irritated by the 
intrusion of the whites into their favorite hunting- 
ground, and occasional manifestations of enmity were 
to have been and were expected ; still, the relations 
of the races were not always those of ill-will and ill- 
service. The late James Sulgrove, who came to the 
settlement in 1823, and at his death in 1875 was 
the oldest business man in the city continuously in 
the same business, used to tell a little incident of the 
good feeling of the Indians that may go to set ofi' 
the less pleasant ones. His father, while riding 
through the dense woods where West Indianapolis 
now stands, with a child before him, saw an Indian 
following at a rapid pace, as if to overtake him. 
Feeling a little alarmed, he hurried his horse ahead, 
but saw that the Indian hurried too. Knowing the 
impossibility of escaping by speed in the deep, miry 
mud of the river bottom with the child to take care 
of, he slackened his pace and let the native come up. 
As he approached he held out a child's shoe in his 
hand, which had dropped from the foot of the little 
fellow on the horse, and been picked up by the 
Indian, who had followed pertinaciously through the 
mud to return it. Trivial as such an afi'air is, it is 
worth noting as an evidence that the Indians then, 
i as now and always, treat the whites in much the 
' same way the whites treat them. If there is no 
special cause of dislike or hostility, the Indians are 



70 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



as well disposed to be kindly and hospitable as other 
men. If they are swindled and abused they can 
hardly be more vindictive, if we may trust the early 
reports of revengeful white murders. 

Of the homes and modes of life of the early set- 
tlers some little suggestion has been made in occa- 
sional allusions, but a better idea is given in Mr. Now- 
land's account of the way his father's family settled 
themselves here in the fall of 1820 on their arrival. 
He says that a Quaker from Wayne County by the 
name of Townsend, the same who afterwards joined 
in putting in operation the first wool-carding machine 
here, had come out to the settlement and built a 
cabin and covered it, but had left the sawing out of 
the necessary openings to a more convenient season 
and returned to the White Water. Mr. Nowland's 
father took possession, by the advice of a friend, but, 
for fear of cutting openings for doors, windows, and 
a chimney in the wrong place, decided to cut none at 
all, and made an entrance by the novel process of 
prying up two corners of the house and taking out 
the third log from the bottom. A few clapboards 
taken from the middle of the roof let the smoke out, 
and the whole aifair was about as comfortable as a 
wigwam. The fire was built on the ground, which 
was the floor, and rag carpets wore hung round the 
walls to exclude the wind, against which there was 
no provision of " chinking and daubing." The 
neighbors, in the generous fashion of the backwoods, 
all assisted readily in anything that required their 
help, and a cabin of their own was soon provided for 
the family. There may possibly be in the city yet 
one of these primeval cabins weather-boarded over, 
as a good many were, and made most excellent resi- 
dences too, as handsome as a frame and as solid as 
a brick ; but the unhewed cabin, unfaced and left in 
its native roughness, probably disappeared with the 
burning of a double log house on the bank of Pogue's 
Run, near Mississippi Street, some years before the 
war. The double cabin was the palatial structure 
of the early settlements of the New Purchase. A 
two-story, hewed-log house was sometimes built, but 
it was as phenomenal as Vanderbilt's marvelous 
home. There was one on Maryland Street, south 
side, west of Meridian, near the present east end of 



the Grand Hotel, that was occupied by a family 
named Goudy for a time, and afterwards by some 
of the hands employed on the National road in 1837 
or 1838 or thereabouts. It may have been the first 
house used by the Methodists as a place of worship 
in 1825, for they did use a hewed-log house on 
Maryland Street, near Meridian. It disappeared 
forty years ago. One-story houses frequently made a 
sort of second story of the garret by a ceiling of 
loose plank or puncheons and a ladder, and this 
was sometimes the children's room and sometimes a 
guest's room. Doors were usually battened, swung 
on large wooden hinges, and fastened with a wooden 
latch, lifted from the outside by a string fastened to 
it and passing through a hole in the door above. 
The hospitable assurance of a backwoodsman that his 
"latch-string was always out" can be readily appre- 
ciated with this explanation. It meant that his 
house could be entered at any time by anybody. If 
the latch-string were drawn in through the hole a 
person outside would have no chance to get in. A 
close-jointed hewed-log house was warmer in winter 
and cooler in summer than a brick, and, except that 
it would rot, was preferable. Unhewed houses were 
always more or less subject to the intrusion of va- 
grant breezes and curious eyes by the falling out or 
knocking out of the " chinking" and " daubing" that 
filled the .spaces between the logs. This was usually 
made of blocks of split wood, from six inches to a 
foot long by three or four inches wide and an inch 
or two thick, laid in oblique rows between the logs 
and covered thick with the mud of the country. 

Chimneys were usually built clear outside of the 
house, against a hole eight or ten feet wide by five 
or six high cut out of the logs or left by measure- 
ment when the logs were cut before the raising, as 
other openings were arranged for frequently. The 
square of the chimney at the bottom, as high as the 
fireplace inside, was built of heavy split timber . 
notched like the logs of the wall and heavily 
" daubed." The upper part was narrowed from the 
square structure below to the usual size of a smoke- 
vent of brick, but made of small split sticks laid on 
each other in courses of pairs and thickly plastered 
with clay or mud. As dangerous as such work would 



SOCIAL CONDITION OF THE EARLY SETTLERS. 



71 



appear in such close contact with the huge fires of 
the backwoods, there was not more danger if the 
" daubing" was well looked to than there is in the 
" defective flue" that is the terror of city house- 
holders and the pest of insurance companies. Be- 
sides, if a chimney should take fire it could be dis- 
cerned at once, for the whole extent of the flue was 
as open as the door, and a tinful of water could do 
all that a steam-engine is needed to do now, and with- 
out damaging anything, where the engine would do 
as much harm as a fire. With all the rudeness and 
lack of luxuries and even of conveniences, the pio- 
neers of the West had some countervailing advan- 
tages even in the structure of their houses. 

Log cabins were abundant here when cooking- 
stoves came round, but they had been going out for 
some years, and there was never any considerable 
association between the home of the backwoods and 
the kitchen of the city. The cooking of the cabin 
was all done in the big fireplace. Mr. Nowland tells 
how the fires were made. The back-log, cut the full 
length of the fireplace, was laid at one end on a sled 
called a " lizard," and hauled into the house by a 
horse till it was opposite the fireplace, when it was 
rolled in, and followed by a " forestick" of the same 
size, and brought in the same way. Smaller wood 
filled in the space between the two on the heavy and- 
irons, — sometimes stones or smaller logs,— and with 
proper attention to the small fuel such a fire would last 
twenty-four hours. The baking was done in skillets, 
set in front of the fire on a bed of coals, with the lid 
covered with coals. If it was a "johnny-cake" that 
was to be baked, it was spread out by hand till it was 
a foot or so long and half as wide or more by nearly 
an inch in thickness, and then laid on the "johnny- 
cake board," about like the half of a modern sleeve- 
board, and set on edge before the fire, supported by 
a big chip or a stone or anything handy. Nothing 
more savory was ever made of grain than a "johnny- 
cake." The frying was done like the baking, and 
not unfrequently with the same utensil. For boiling, 
an iron crane usually hung in the fireplace, with two 
or three heavy iron hooks, that could be moved along 
the lever, like the weights on a steelyard, to find the 
best spot of the fire. Against the end walls of the 



big fireplace it was a common sight to see venison 
hams hanging to dry, or "jerk," as the phrase is now. 
Pumpkins cut into thin strips and dried were fre- 
quent adornments of strings or poles near the ceiling 
or along the walls. A " smoke-house," to cure the 
winter's bacon, was an usual adjunct of the cabin, 
and the fiimily meat was kept there with other pro- 
visions. Before there were any mills, or when low 
water prevented them from grinding, corn was often 
made into " lye hominy," or, when just hardening 
from the roasting ear into maturity, was grated on a 
half-cylinder of tin punched outwardly full of holes, 
the outturned edges of the hole rasping an ear away 
rapidly in the deft hands of a backwoods housewife. 
Potatoes were roasted in the hot ashes and embers, 
and the boy who has eaten them thus cooked, and 
will not swear that no other cooking is comparable, 
is " fit for stratagems" and all other bad things. 

In the year 1830, Mr. John Finley, of Wayne 
County, wrote a New Year's address for the Indian- 
apolis Journal, at the close of which occurs so 
admirable a description of a " Hoosier" pioneer cabin 
that no apology is required for reproducing it here : 

" I'm told in riding somewliere West 
A stranger found a ' Hoosier's nest,' 
In other words, a buckeye cabin, 
Just big enough to hold Queen Mab in. 
Its situation, low but airy. 
Was on the borders of a prairie; 
And fearing he might be benighted, 
He hailed the house, and then alighted. 
The Hoosier met him at the door, 
Their salutations soon were o'er. 
He took the stranger's horse aside 
And to a sturdy sapling tied, 
Then, having stripped the saddle off, 
He fed him in a sugar-trough. 
The stranger stooped to enter in, 
The entrance closing with a pin. 
And manifested strong desire 
To seat him by the log-heap fire, 
Where half a dozen Hoosieroons, 
With mush and milk, tin cups and spoons, 
White heads, bare feet, and dirty faces. 
Seemed much inclined to keep their places. 
But madam, anxious to display 
Her rough but undisputed sway, 
Her offspring to the ladder led. 
And cuffed the youngsters up to bed. 



72 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



Invited shortly to partake 

Of venison, milk, and johnny-cake, 

The stranger made a hearty meal, 

And glances round the room would steal. 

One side was lined with divers garments, 

The other spread with skins of varmints; 

Dried pumpkins overheard were strung. 

Where venison hams in plenty bung; 

Two rifles placed above the door. 

Three dogs lay stretched upon the tioor. 

In short, the domicile was rife 

With specimens of Hoosier life. 

The host, who centered bis aflFections 

On game and ' range' and ' quarter sections,' 

Discoursed his weary guest for hours. 

Till Somnus' all-composing powers 

Of sublunary cares bereft them. 

And then No matter how the story ended. 

The application I intended 
Is from the famous Scottish poet. 
Who seemed to feel, as well as know it. 
That ' burly chiels and clever hizzies 
Are bred in sic a way as this is.' " 

The nickname of an ludianian, " Hoosier," occurs 
in this poem the first time that it ever appeared in 
print, say some old settlers. It could not have been 
very old or generally known throughout the country 
if it originated, as the most credible accounts relate, 
in a fight among the hands employed in excavating 
the canal around the Falls of the Ohio at Louisville. 
Some big Irishman, after keeping out of the shindy 
as long as he could stand it, at last went in and 
knocked down four or five of the other party in 
quick succession. Jumping up in high glee he 
cracked his heels together, and shouted, " I'm a 
husher." The boast crossed the river, and was 
naturalized by the residents there, and thence passed 
all over the State and into other States. Except 
" Yankee," no other State or sectional nickname is 
so well known, and it is not unfrequently used as 
a designation of a Western man, as " Yankee" is of 
an Eastern man. Grovernor Wright, of Indiana, once 
told a foreign visitor that the name originated in a 
habit of travelers calling out when they would ride 
up to a fence at night with the purpose of staying 
till morning, " Who's here ?" Repetition made one 
word of it, and finally made a name for backwoods 
settlers of it, which in some unexplained way was 



appropriated to Indiana. Another explanation is 
that Col. Lehmanowski, a Polish ofiicer of the first 
Napoleon, who occasionally visited this place, and 
preached here to a Lutheran association and lec- 
tured on Napoleon's wars, about 1840 to 1842, 
started the name by his pronunciation of the word 
" Hussar," which some " gostrating" fellow got hold 
of and used to glorify himself. This, however, oc- 
curring as late as 1840, will not explain the use of the 
word in Finley's poem in 1830, except in the fashion 
of " Merlin's prophecy," made by the " Fool" in 
" Lear." 

Dr. Philip Mason, of White Water, in his " Au- 
tobiography," gives an account of the agricultural 
implements in use on the farms of these " Hoosiers" 
that will not be uninteresting to the later generation 
of farmers. " The plow was the common shovel- 
plow mostly, though a few called the ' bar-share' 
were used. This was a bar on the land side, with 
a broad, flat share running to a point at the forward 
end, attached to a coulter with a steel nose in front. 
The coulter extended up through the wooden beam of 
the plow. Two wooden handles, one attached to the 
beam and the bar, and to the bar of the land side of 
the plow, the other handle connected with a wooden 
mold-board, which pressed out the dirt and partially 
turned it. It was connected with the other handle 
by wooden pins or rounds. Horses were often at- 
tached to the plow without an iron clevis. The 
double-tree was connected with a fixture not unlike 
a clevis ; the single-tree fastened to the double-tree 
by a hickory withe, sometimes with a kind of wooden 
clevis. The horses were mostly geared for plowing 
with a collar made of corn-shucks ; hames made from 
the roots of the ash or oak, fashioned as best they 
could be with a drawing-knife, a hole at top and bot- 
tom, so as to fasten with a cord or a thong made of 
rawhide ; not uncommonly a hole was made with an 
auger near the middle of the hame to take in the 
trace, which was made of hemp or flax tow, and spun 
and made on a rude rope-walk. The trace was run 
through the hole in the hame and secured by a knot, 
and looped over the end of the single-tree, on which 
there was a notch at the back part to keep it in place. 
For a back-band a strong piece of tow cloth doubled 



SOCIAL CONDITION OF THE EARLY SETTLERS. 



73 



was used. The horses were guided by a bridle with 
a rope headstall and a rope line, mostly driven with 
one line. When using two horses they were coupled 
together by a rope at the bits, sometimes by a stick, 
with strings tied to the stick and then to the bridle- 
bit. Double lines were seldom used in driving one 
or two horses. Even a four-horse team was driven 
with a single line attached to the near forward horse. 
Salt and iron were obtained at Cincinnati, and fortu- 
nate was he who could by any means obtain salt 
enough to preserve his meat and salt his food. Corn 
was often sold at six cents a bushel, and wheat at 
twenty-five cents. Salt was often as high as two 
dollars and a half and three dollars a bushel." 



seasoned. From these I made a high post bedstead, 
which has been in use ever since till the last seven 
years." The common chair of the backwoods was the 
" split-bottom," still made and used occasionally, and 
superior to anything of the fashionable kind made 
now. Long thin strips of tough wood that would 
split in flakes about an inch wide were used to weave 
the seat. They wore out or broke readily, but were 
readily replaced. Sometimes buckskin was stretched 
and tacked to the frame of the seat, and made a better 
chair than any costly cushioned affair of this day, 
until it stretched into too deep a cavity, as it always 
did sooner or later. 

From this account of a pioneer it will be seen that 




AN E3IIGRANT 



Although the pioneers all had to build their own 
houses, they were not all nor generally so destitute 
as to be forced to make their own furniture. Dr. 
Mason thus describes his labor in this direction : " My 
next object was to make us seats. For this purpose I 
went into the creek bottom and selected a suitable blue 
ash tree, cut it down, then cut notches into the sides, 
and split off pieces of suitable length and width for 
benches. With the broad-axe and drawing-knife they 
were made smooth. Some were made for a single per- 
son and had three legs, while the longer ones had four 
legs. Our next object was a bedstead. I found on 
the place some black walnut rails which were well 



farmers did a good deal towards making for themselves 
the appliances and implements they needed. It was 
often their only chance, consequently it was no un- 
usual thing to see about a farmer's barn or back yard 
a rough carpenter's bench with a wooden clamp or 
vise, or a " horse" with a treadle, and a notched head 
pressed by the treadle down on a stick to hold it fast 
against the "horse" for the use of the "drawing- 
knife," the universal tool of the backwoods, only less 
indispensable than the axe. The ready adaptability 
of the American pioneer was balked by little in the 
way of wood-work, but blacksmithing was too much, 
and the blacksmith-shop was universally coeval with 



74 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



the tavern and village store. He made the crane for 
the fireplace, the " dog-irons" or andirons, the shovel 
and tongs, the plowshare and clevis, the horse's bit 
sometimes, the gearing of the wife's loom, the irons 
of the husband's wagon, shod the horses, sharpened 
the plows, made the grubbing hoes and the fishing 
gigs, hammered smooth the battered poles of axes, 
riveted the blade in the boy's broken knife, and some- 
times ventured to repair the broken lock of the hunter's 
rifle. Pretty much all else the family did for them- 
selves, even to the wagon-making once in a while. 
The spinning, weaving, cutting, and clothes-making 
were the good wife's work, with plenty more besides, 
and if she didn't make as neat fits or graceful drapery 
as a fashionable tailor or dressmaker to-day, her 
breeches were sound and durable, her " wamuses" 
comfortable and convenient, her dresses admirably 
adapted to the service and situation. Buckskin was 
largely used for clothing and frequently for moccasins. 
It is queer that the infinite superiority of the latter 
in comfort to all other forms of foot-gear for those 
distressed by the distortions and excrescences of civil- 
ization has not reintroduced them, at least among sen- 
sible people who care more for comfort than appear- 
ances. Buckskin wamuses and breeches disappeared 
forty years ago, except in rare instances of well-pre- 
served pioneer relics. The deer was driven off into 
the remotest parts of the county even before that, 
and the hides becoming scarce, and dear in a double 
sense, were gradually replaced in saddlery and other 
manufactures by sheepskin, by no means its equal. 
Ex-Coroner Dr. Wishard tells an amusing .story of 
Emmanuel Glympse, one of the first settlers of Perry 
township. He had been wearing a pair of ill-tanned 
buckskin breeches, which got soaked in a shower as 
he was going from home to a school he kept in the 
neighborhood. They were pliable enough when he 
sat down in them wet, but they dried before he 
attempted to rise, and then they were as hard as 
sheet-iron, and he had to get water and resoak them 
before they would allow him freedom of muscle 
enough to walk. It was much such a case as " Sut 
Lovengood's" shirt. For a number of years carding 
machinery was frequently attached to the motive- 
power of mills to make " rolls" of the farmers' 



wool, but a farmhouse was rarely without its pair 
of cards for hand-made rolls if an emergency required 
them. As late as 1832 or 1833 there was a carding- 
machine run by horse-power — a huge wheel fifteen 
feet in diameter set at a slope with a vertical shaft 
in the centre, on the lower side of which a horse 
was in constant motion — on the northwest corner of 
Maryland and Illinois Streets, and another on Ken- 
tucky Avenue near where the first tobacco-factory 
was situated. These were used for no other purpose, 
but in at least two mills near the city the same kind 
of machinery was attached to the water-power. One 
was on Fall Creek race, the other on the bayou, near 
the present line of the Vincennes Railroad, in a mill 
erected by the late Daniel Yandes and his brother-in- 
law, Andrew Wilson. Spinning and weaving machi- 
nery came, temporarily and uselessly, in a big steam- 
mill enterprise some years later, but it failed, and 
woolen manufacture was left to show itself nearly 
twenty years later. " Store clothes" were by no 
means unknown, but a large dependence was held on 
the mother's skill in the country, and to some extent 
in the town too, where a good deal of the country 
life was retained in the woods and corn-patches that 
surrounded many of the houses. It was not till the 
settlement was getting into its teens that it began to 
put on city airs and distinguish itself and its ways 
from the country. 

A portion of the home labors of the backwoods 
was of a kind that required co-operation, and these 
were made occasions of fun and frolic, though rarely 
to the neglect of the real business. Among these 
were the " quiltings" for women and girls, with the 
necessary attendance of young men later, when the 
games of the period were zealously kept up as long 
as it seemed decorous. These were much the same 
as country games in all parts of the country, of 
English origin and traditional repute, and rarely 
mixed up with later inventions till the town and 
country began to be less closely assimilated. The point 
or purpose of most of them was a kiss claimed as a 
forfeit or penalty. The more intellectual entertain- 
ments, like making and solving puzzles, were not so 
popular as those with a little material satisfaction 
lodged in their conclusion. " Apple-parings" were 



AMUSEMENTS. 



75 



not so common here as in the East, but they were 
another kind of co-operative work that was made an 
amusement. " House-raisina" was a male task with 
a similar accompaniment belter adapted to masculine 
tastes; "log-rolling" was another. The trees that 
had been cut down to clear the land for cultivation 
had to be put out of the way, and no way was so 
expeditious as to roll them into great heaps and burn 
them, trunks, chips, limbs, brush, and leaves. So 
the neighbors gathered to a " log-rolling" as to a 
" raising," and many a rivalry of strength and skill 
with the handspike was raised or settled tliere. There 
was fighting of course, especially on visits to town 
and to the "grocery," as the liquor-shop was called 
then ; but the exhibition at a " log-rolling" was quite 
as satisfactory proof that a man was a " good man," 
"stout," "hold his otrn," and so on, as a successful 
fight at Jerry Collins' corner. " Sugar-making" 
was frequently turned into a frolic, though co-opera- 
tion was not so necessary to it as the other work. 
The processes were much the same as now, except 
that the " troughs" were not buckets or crocks, but 
wooden vessels roughly hewed in the halves of 
short logs split in two, unhandy, easily overturned, 
and readily inclined to get dirty. They were visited 
at regular intervals, and the sugar-water emptied 
into a barrel on a sled, or in a wagon if there was 
not snow enough for a sled, and reset, while the sled 
with its load went back to the fire, usually made 
between two good-sized long logs, on which the 
kettles rested. Here the evaporating water was re- 
placed from the barrels till it was sweet enough to 
finish with, and then came the fun, " the stirring off," 
and hunting out lumps to eat, or filling egg-shells 
with thick syrup to harden into a lump like a stone, 
or pouring a great mass into a pan of sugar-water for 
the boys and girls to pull at, or making cakes of it, 
or scalding fingers with it for some favorite to doctor. 
" Sugar-making" was capable of being made the 
most entertaining event of the year, and it was often 
done. 

Besides the amusements made of occasions of really 
necessary neighborly co-operation, the men of both 
town and country during the first decade of the 
settlement, or in some cases the first two, contrived 



amusements that made no pretence of work. The 
chief of these were "quarter races" and "shooting 
matches." For some years the portion of West 
Street along the Military Ground was the favorite 
race-track, the outcome being near the crossing of 
West and Indiana Avenue on the Michigan road. 
Nags taken from the plow or the wagon, and ridden 
by the owners or by some boy, were the contestants, 
and the stake was anything from a plug of tobacco 
to ten dollars, the latter not usually risked on any 
animal that had not a local reputation. Forty years 
ago or more these quarter races on West Street took 
place nearly every Saturday, and were usually dec- 
orated with a fight or two. 

A conspicuous character concerned in them fre- 
quently was a very remarkable man named Nathaniel 
Vise, who settled and named the town of Visalia, in 
California. Though constantly associated with drink- 
ing men all his life and making drinking-places his 
principal haunts, he was never known to drink. 
Though he gambled, he was notoriously as honorable 
a man as there was in the place. Possessed of phe- 
nomenal strength and agility, and living among fight- 
ing men, he never fought when he could help it, and 
he never fought without whipping his man. His 
checkered career took him to Texas after he left here, 
and he became the intimate friend of Jack Hays, the 
noted " Texas Ranger." They went to California 
together, and there his amazing strength and skill 
made him so formidable that not one of the many 
noted prize-fighters then in San Francisco, like 
" Yankee" Sullivan and " Country" McClusky, would 
fight him " rough and tumble" for ten thousand 
dollars. He was killed but a year or so ago by the 
fall of a building in Texarkana. He came to this 
place a mere lad with his father from Kentucky, and 
grew up here. At one time, about 1839, he had a 
contract on the Central Canal, near the town, and 
when the public works were suspended that year he 
made a pro rata division of all the money he had 
among his hands. They came to the town and got 
drunk on it, and were then easily persuaded by a 
fractious Irishman that they had been cheated and 
ought to lick Vise. Happening to pass along the 
street where a group of them was gathered, a little 



76 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



east of Meridian Street on Washington, they assailed 
him, first with savage language and then with their 
clubs and fists. He knocked and kicked down a 
half-dozen of them before he got clear of them. 
His activity was so great that he jumped high enough 
to kick both feet in the stomach of one of the mob 
and prostrate him senseless. He once beat a pro- 
fessional foot-racer in racing costume, without chang- 
ing a single thing he wore, and beat him so badly in 
a hundred yards or so that at the outcome he turned 
and walked towards his antagonist, meeting and laugh- 
ing at him. He was a cousin of Judge N. B. Taylor, 
of the Superior Court. So much notice of him is 
due to the conspicuous place he held among the early 
settlers and the reputation he left here. 

After the abandonment of the canal, its bed south 
of Pleasant Run, where there was a long stretch of 
level bottom, was made a race-track by the ambitious 
residents of Perry township, especially the section of 
it some half-dozen miles south of the town in the 
river bottom, called " Waterloo," a region noted for 
fighting, drinking, betting, and wild frolics of all 
kinds. Here lived the Snows, the Stevenses, the 
Fanoillers, the Mundys, the Glympses, the Myerses, 
some quiet and orderly, some a good deal like the 
modern " cow-boy." All were ■' drinking" men, 
however. 

" Shooting matches" continued to be a popular 
amusement till near the time the completion of the 
first railroad changed the direction of men's minds to 
the graver occupations of establishing industries and 
multiplying business. There were two kinds of 
matches. In one the shooting was done at a target, 
in the other at the object which was made the stake. 
In the first case the usual prize was a beef divided 
into five " quarters," the fifth being the hide and 
tallow, and worth more cash value than either of the 
others. In the second case the object shot for — ^a 
turkey commonly, sometimes a goose — was set against 
a tree or stump, with a log rolled before it so as to con- 
ceal all of it but the head and upper part of the neck. 
The contestants stood oflF an agreed distance, usually 
sixty yards, and shot at the head " ofi' hand." The 
first to bring blood won it. Each contestant put in 
enough to make the aggregate a good price for the 



fowl. The rifle was the only weapon of the time in 
the backwoods, whether the game were deer or bear, 
turkey, quail, or squirrel. Small game could usually 
be hit close enough about the head to leave the eat- 
able portion uninjured. But nobody could shoot a 
running turkey's head off with a rifle, as one of T. 
B. Thorpe's apocryphal stories makes Mississippi old- 
time hunters do frequently. It might be possible if 
a turkey were running directly away from or towards 
a hunter, but barely possible then, and utterly impos- 
sible, except by accident, in any other direction. The 
shot-gun was thought beneath the dignity of hunters 
and marksmen, and even boys disdained it. The rifle 
was the weapon of a man ; " shot-guns will do for 
girls," said an old pioneer once in Mr. Beck's gun- 
smith-shop. It was not till the German immigration 
began to afi'ect social conditions that the shot-gun be- 
gan to displace the rifle. Now the hunter here never 
uses the rifle, and the shot-gun has become the es- 
pecial agent even of the humanizing murders of our 
enlightened land. Several prominent citizens were 
noted for skill with the rifle. Robert B. Duncan was 
probably the most formidable of all, but Squire Wea- 
ver and Nathaniel Cox and several others were little 
inferior, if at all. Mr. Cox was one of the conspicu- 
ous pioneers of the New Purchase. He was a me- 
chanical genius, and was employed to do all sorts of 
work that nobody else could or would try. He was 
carpenter, cabinet-maker, cooper, turner, painter, boat- 
builder, anything that was wanted, — a quaint, humor- 
ous, generous man, full of queer stories and dry fun, 
passionately fond of hunting and fishing, and always 
at it when he had no work to do. In 1842, when 
he wanted to run for county treasurer, probably, he 
announced himself in handbills as " Old Nat Cox, 
the Coon-Hunter." He was the drummer of militia 
musters, and made his own drums. He lived west of 
Missouri Street on Washington for a great many 
years, and died about 1851. According to Mr. Now- 
land, he was the prototype of " Sut Lovengood" 
in drinking the two components of a Seidlitz powder 
separately and letting them mix in his stomach, an 
experiment that he said " made him feel as if Niagara 
Falls were running out of his head." He was a 
Marylander, and came here in 1821. 



AMUSEMENTS. 



77 



Another amusement of the early settlement of the 
place was " gander-pullino;." This was imported from 
the South by the settlers from North Carolina and 
Tennessee, of whom there were a good many. Those 
who have read some of the sketches of Southern life 
and scenes by Hooper and Lonestreet will know all 
that can be known about a " gander-pulling" without 
taking part in it. One of the places — possibly the 
only one — where it was practiced in this county was 
at Allisonville, in Washington township, on the road 
to Conner's place and Noblesville. Here two resi- 
dents, Lashbrook and Deford, oflFered an enlightened 
and Christian public the refined and intellectual en- 
tertainment of a " gander-pulling" at such times as 
promised to make the speculation profitable. An old 
gander was caught, his neck stripped of feathers and 
thickly covered with soft soap, and hung by his legs 
to a strong but yielding limb of a handy tree. The 
contestants mounted their horses and in turn rode at 
full speed under the swinging fowl, catching its soapy 
neck with one hand and holding on with all their 
might to pull the head oif : that was the victory. 
There is no record or recollection of the frequency of 
this elegant sport or of the persons that took part 
in it. 

It may savor a little of the extravagance of a joke 
to suggest that one of the primitive entertainments 
of the settlement was fighting, and yet the frequency 
and ready reconciliation of that sort of enlivenmant 
certainly looked that way. Fighting at elections is 
common now, but it was inevitable then ; and it was 
a rare Saturday that didn't see a " passage at arms" 
of the backwoods kind, " a rough and tumble" fight, 
at some of the " groceries." Occasionally the diversion 
was diversified by fisticufi' duels of a more sedate if 
not satisfactory character than the whiskey-nurtured 
rows of street corners and handy open lots. Pretty 
early in the annals of the village one of these affairs 
occurred between Andrew Wilson, one of the owners 
of one of the early mills, and a neighbor by the name 
of Zadoc (universally called " Zedick") Smith. The 
pair went off alone into the thick woods about the 
mill situated on the " old bayou," near the crossing 
of the Belt Railroad and Morris Street, and fought 
out their quarrel, came back roughly handled, and 



never to their dying day told anybody which was the 
victor. Not improbably the result was a good deal like 
that of the fight celebrated in a " nigger" ballad of this 
period between " Bill Crowder" and " Davy Crockett" : 
" We fought half a day, and then agreed to stop it, 
for I was badly licked, and so was Davy Crockett." 
Another fight of the same secret and undetermined 
kind took place later between Captain Wiley and Jim 
Smith, both tailors and " sports," and both unusually 
stalwart and fine-looking men. They went off to the 
State House Square, a remote and rural spot then, 
and settled the matter, but how they never told. 
So infectious was this fighting humor that Calvin 
Fletcher when prosecutor took offense at some action of 
Squire Obed Foote, and undertook to thrash him in 
his own oflace, with poor success, however, which he 
signalized by informing on himself and having himself 
indicted and fined. Eye-gouging and biting were 
practiced in these affairs in the Southern fashion, but 
never or rarely to the maiming or serious injury of 



Of this period militia musters and militia ofiBcers 
form too important an element to be overlooked. 
When the county was organized the battle of New 
Orleans was but .seven years old, and that was a militia 
battle on our side. There was enough military spirit 
in the people to demand a military system of some 
kind, and to sustain it till it got to be an old song and 
the events of the last war with England had faded 
into legend, and a militia force was organized of all 
the adult male population with some exceptions, 
divided into regiments by counties and brigades by 
Congressional districts. Judge William W. Wick was 
the first brigadier of this district ; James Paxton was 
elected the first colonel, Samuel Morrow the first lieu- 
tenant-colonel, and Alexander W. Russell the first 
major, as before stated. Musters were held annually^ 
possibly oftener, and the turn-out was expected to 
embrace about all the able-bodied voting population 
who were not specially exempted. But it did not, as 
there were always plenty to look on besides the troops 
that followed the march. The parade was formed at 
the court-house usually, with no uniforms except 
what the ofiicers wore, and no guns but " squirrel 
rifles," and many without them taking canes, papaw 



78 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



sticks, broken hoe handles, or pieces of split plank. 
The march was sometimes out east to a grove, but 
oftener west down Washington Street and Maryland 
to the open ground between Georgia and Louisiana 
Streets west of Tennessee, where the force was put 
through an hour of drilling and marching, and another 
hour of idling about and talking and eating apples, 
and then the parade was dismissed, with about as much 
improvement of military knowledge and spirit as if 
all hands had stayed at home. But the parade was a 
great event. The regimental officers made a most 
inspiriting show. They were in their glory, as a 
" militia officer on the peace establishment" — as Cor- 
win said of Crary — ought to be at a militia annual 
parade. It was the day for which the other three hun- 
dred and sixty-four were made. They galloped back 
and forth, their red and white plumes swaying and 
bobbing, their sword-sheaths rattling, their blades 
flashing, when they were not rusty, their voices duly 
husky with dust and duty, while old Peter Winchell 
and Nat Cox kept the drums rattling till no one could 
hear more than an infrequent squeal of Glidden True's 
fife. Little boys ran along and screamed, dogs barked, 
sedate old hogs in fence corners got up and ran off 
grunting, women stood in their doors holding up their 
babies to see the gorgeous spectacle, and for one hour 
of glorious life the militia officer had a right to feel 
that he was a bigger man than any man without a 
commission. 

Although the militia sy.stem was intended, as Burke 
said of the feudal system, to be " the cheap defense 
of the nation," and the military tastes of the people 
were as strong as those of any people, yet so incessant 
were the demands of urgent duties and labors that 
little time was left for such as availed only in remote 
and improbable emergencies. Thus it came that after 
the settlement of the New Purchase there was never 
anything more made of the militia system than an 
annual show and a little personal distinction fre- 
quently used for political effect by the officers. This 
will explain the reference to it here instead of in the 
general course of the history, where its infrequency 
would make it more irrelevant. 

Ex-United States Senator Smith gives an account 
of the " end of the militia system" on the White 



Water, which is at once so amusing and so fully illus- 
trative of the condition of the system all over the 
State that it is reproduced here. Premising that an 
ambitious young fellow named Lewis had been elected 
major of the regiment, and that he was possessed by 
a large idea of the importance of his position, Mr. 
Smith goes on thus: " The great and memorable day 
at last arrived. The aide-de-camp of the major came 
galloping into the field in full uniform directly from 
headquarters, and halted at the marquee of the adju- 
tant. In a few minutes the order from the major was 
given in a loud military voice by the adjutant, mounted 
on a splendid gray charger, ' Officers to your places, 
marshal your men into companies, separating the bare- 
footed from those who have shoes or moccasins, plac- 
ing the guns, sticks, and cornstalks in separate pla- 
toons, and then form the line ready to receive the 
major !' The order was promptly obeyed, when at a 
distance Maj. Lewis was seen coming into the field 
with his aids by his side, his horse rearing and plung- 
ing very unlike ' Old Whitey' at the battle of Buena 
Vista. The line was formed, the major took position 
on a rising ground about a hundred yards in front of 
the battalion ; rising in his stirrups, and turning his 
full face upon the line, he shouted, ' Attention, the 

whole ' Unfortunately the major had not tried 

his voice before in the open air, and with the word 
' attention' it broke, and ' the whole' sounded like the 
whistle of a fife. The moment the sound reached the 
line some one at the lower end, with a voice as shrill 
as the major's, cried out, ' Children come out of the 
swamp, you'll get snake bit !' The major pushed 
down the line at full speed. 'Who dares insult me?' 
No answer. The cry then commenced all along the 
line, ' You'll get snake-bit 1' The major turned and 
dashed up the line, but soon had sense enough to see 
that it was the militia that was at an end, and not 
himself that was the object of ridicule. He dashed 
his chapeau from his head, drew his sword and threw 
it upon the ground, tore his commission to pieces, and 
resigned on the spot. The battalion dispersed, and 
militia musters were at end from that time forward 
in the White Water country." The system made a 
less comical exit in the White River country, but it 
went out about the same time and as completely. Its 



AMUSEMENTS. 



79 



offices ceased to be of any value even as means of 
electioneering for political positions. When it began 
to be replaced, as it was in ten or a dozen years after 
the removal of the capital to the White lliver region, 
the substitute took the form of voluntary associations, 
always sure to be more efficient than any statutory 
system in a country that couldn't enforce, and wouldn't 
trj', a conscription in time of peace. 

In the way of ordinary amusements, such as usu- 
ally divert the inhabitants of towns, there was nothing. 
A theatrical performance had come and gone, and that 
was all till 1830, when the first circus, McComber & 
Co.'s, exhibited in the rear of Henderson's tavern. 
Such diversions, besides those referred to, as the 
young capital had to regale itself with it contrived 
for itself, owing nothing and paying nothing to any- 
body else. 

Thus it came that for the first decade or two the 
town and country were as closely assimilated in their 
amusements and general social condition as if the 
town had never been platted or its streets cleared, and 
in business and in ordinary duties the separation was 
little more distinct. The town was merely a little 
thickening of the country settlement. 

Mr. Mason speaks of the scarcity of money in In- 
diana in the first few years after the State's admis- 
sion into the Union, and all the survivors of the first 
dozen years of the settlement of the New Purchase say 
that most of their trading was barter. Money was hard 
to come by, and what little was encountered in this 
region was Spanish almost altogether or Mexican. 
The old copper cent, as big as a half dollar, was the 
only home coin that circulated in any considerable 
force; the next smallest was the " fip," or " fipenny 
bit," a little Spanish coin rated at six and a fourth 
cents, the sixteenth of a dollar. In later years, after 
flat-boats began running to New Orleans with our 
corn and pork and whiskey and hay, we imported 
the Southern designation and called it a " picayune." 
The next coin was Spanish too, worth two of the 
first, and called a " levy," sometimes a " 'leven- 
pence," changed by Southern influence into "bit." 
Another Spanish coin worth eighteen to twenty 
cents was called a pistareen. It was so nearly the 
same size, as the Spanish quarter that it was easily 



passed for that if worn so much as to make the 
stamp undiscernible. The quarter had the Pillars of 
Hercules on the reverse, and the pistareen had not. 
These coins were the common medium of business 
when money was used at all, except that the dollar 
coin was frequently Mexican, sometimes a French 
five-franc piece helped out by a fip, but never an 
American dollar. If the " daddies" had it, they 
kept it. Paper money began to show itself with the 
organization and operation of the old State Bank in 
1834. The first American coins, except an occa- 
sional ten-cent piece of the old pattern (the first 
with the seated figure of Liberty) ever brought to 
Indianapolis, so far as can be now ascertained, were 
brought in the summer of 1838 by a jeweler named 
Foster on his return from the East, and by him 
placed in the corner-stone of the first Christ Church, 
which was the first corner-stone laid in the place. 

The primitive condition of the country and the un- 
sophisticated character of the people can be better 
judged by a few incidents related by eye-witnesses than 
by chapters of elaborate description, wherefore it is 
deemed best to add here some of the anecdotes of the 
early settlement of the White lliver Valley, preserved 
in O. H. Smith's and Mr. Nowland's reminiscences. 
The latter, in his sketch of a noted character of the 
early days of Indianapolis, " Old Helvey," tells an 
amusingly illustrative story of a wedding there. 
" After the bride and groom had retired the whiskey 
gave out. There was no way of getting more except 
at Mr. Landis grocery. He was present, but there 
was no pen, pencil, or paper with which an order 
could be sent to the clerk. Old Helvey suggested 
that Mr. Landis should send his knife, which would 
be recognized by the young man, and would certainly 
bring the whiskey. This was done, and the whiskey 
came, to the great joy of all present. Mr. Helvey 
thought the bride and groom must be dry by this 
time, so he took the jug to them and made them 
drink the health of the guests." 

Another incident related by Mr. Nowland indicates 
a stronger matrimonial exclusiveness in a portion of 
the early settlers than prevails now, or ever prevailed 
in most of the country. This was the first dance 
given in the settlement, by Mr. John Wyant, at his 



80 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



cabin on the river bank, near where Kingan's pork- 
house is, in December, 1821. Mr. John Wyant was 
the first man prosecuted criminally in Marion County. 
His oflFense was selling liquor without a license. 
There was a charge of twenty-five cents admittance 
for each adult male, to furnish the fluids, which were 
the only costly articles used on these occasions. The 
guests had begun to arrive, and while the landlord 
was in " t'other house," as the second cabin was called, 
Mr. Nowland (father), "having been educated in a 
different school of etiquette from that of Mr. Wyant, 
thought it but simple politeness to invite Mrs. Wyant 
to open the ball with him. She gracefully accepted, 
and they with others were going in fine style when 
the landlord returned. He at once commanded the 
music, which was being drawn from the bowels of a 
dilapidated-looking fiddle by Col. Russell, to stop. 
He said, ' As far as himself and wife were concerned 
they were able to do their own dancing, and he 
thought it would look better for every man to dance 
with his own wife ; those who had none could dance 
with the gals.' This order, as far as Mr. and Mrs. 
Wyant were concerned, was strictly adhered to the 
remainder of the night. When the guests were 
ready to leave at the dawn of day they were still 
' bobbing around' together." Not a bad example of 
matrimonial fidelity, which it can do no harm to 
recall at a time when a divorce is granted about 
every day in the year in their own county. 

Of one of the earliest marriages — the second prob- 
ably — Mr. Nowland says, " As the two rooms were 
already full the bride had to make her toilet in the 
smoke-house, where she received the bridegroom and 
his retinue." The wedding dinner is thus described : 
" On either end of the table was a large, fat, wild 
turkey, still hot and smoking from the clay oven in 
which they were roasted. In the middle of the table 
and midway between the turkeys was a fine saddle 
of venison, part of a buck killed the day before by 
Mr. Chinn (the bride's father ; the bridegroom was 
Uriah Gates, a well-known citizen) expressly for the 
occasion. The spaces between the turkeys and veni- 
son were filled with pumpkin, chicken, and various 
other pies. From the side-table or puncheon Mrs. 
Chinn, assisted by the old ladies, was issuing cofi"ee. 



which was taken from a large sugar -kettle that was 
hanging over the fire. By the side of the coffee-potr 
on this side-table was a large tin pan filled with maple 
sugar, and a gallon pitcher of cream." Delmonico 
could not have got up a better dinner at twenty dol- 
lars a head. Mr. Nowland adds that " the dancing 
was continued for two days. I remember that father 
and mother came home after daylight the second day, 
slept until the afternoon, and then went back and put 
in another night." 

An incident of the first Fourth of July celebration 
is related in the same interesting collection of remi- 
niscences : '■ On the morning of the Fourth of July, 
1822, my father's family was aroused before daylight 
by persons hallooing in front of the door. It proved 
to be Capt. James Richey, who lived at the Blufis, 
and a young man and lady who had placed themselves 
under his charge and run away from obdurate parents 
to get married. Mr. Richey and father soon found 
the county clerk, the late James M. Ray, at Carter's 
'Rosebush' tavern, procured the necessary legal docu- 
ment, and Judge Wick married them before breakfast. 
They had scarcely arisen from the breakfast table 
when the young lady was confronted by her angry 
father. Capt. Richey informed him that he was just 
a few minutes too late, and instead of losing a daugh- 
ter had gained a son. The parties were soon recon- 
ciled and invited to attend the barbecue and ball given 
in honor of the day, which they did." 

Mr. Smith tells the following in the same humorous 
vein : 

James Whitcomb, Governor of the State in 1843, 
and United States senator in 1848, dying 1852, 
was one of the foremost lawyers in the State, and 
practiced pretty much all over it, as did his lead- 
ing cotemporaries. In the New Purchase he and 
all the bar were in the habit of stopping at Capt. 
John Berry's tavern in Andersontown (he was the 
man who blazed out " Berry's trace," one of the 
first from the South into the White River region) 
and, as his custom was, the eminent lawyer, who 
greatly resembled the English premier Disraeli in 
face and complexion and fastidious taste, changed 
his shirt at night. Capt. Berry was exceedingly 
sensitive to any disparagement of his hotel, and 



FASHIONS OP THE TIMES. 



81 



this, says Mr. Smith, "was well known to Calvin 
Fletcher," who appears to have been the wag of the 
bar as well as one of the most enterprising and benefi- 
cent of the founders of the prosperity of Indianapo- 
lis. " Taking the captain to one side, he said, ' Do 
you know, Capt. Berry, what Mr. Whitcomb is 
saying about your beds ?' ' I do not ; what does he 
say ?' ' If you will not mention my name, as you 
are one of my particular friends, I will tell you.' 
' Upon honor, I'll never mention your name ; what 
did he saj ?' ' He said your sheets were so dirty 
that he had to pull ofi' his shirt every night and put 
on a dirty shirt to sleep in.' ' I'll watch him to- 
night.' Bed-time came, and Capt. Berry was 
looking through an opening in the door when Mr. 
Whitcomb took his night-shirt out of his portman- 
teau and began to take oflF his day-shirt. He pushed 
open the door, sprang upon Whitcomb, and threw 
him upon the bed. The noise brought in Mr. 
Fletcher and the other lawyers, and after explana- 
tions and apologies on all sides the matter was set- 
tled. Tears afterwards Mr. Whitcomb found out, as 
he said, what he suspected at the time, that Mr. 
Fletcher was at the bottom of the whole matter." 

Among the fashions of the times was the disfavor 
of beards. Side-whiskers of the " mutton-chop" 
style were not uncommon, and occasionally they were 
allowed to grow around the face, except a couple of 
inches or so on the throat and chin, but this was the 
limit. A " goatee," or " imperial," or " moustache" 
would have been as strange a sight as a painted 
Indian as late as 1840. A full beard would have 
been very generally considered a freak of insanity. 
Even whiskers were held " dandyish," and the wearer 
of low esteem. Though Judge William W. Wick 
cherished them when in Congress, he could not make 
them fashionable. Forty years or more ago Joseph 
M. Moore laughed at them in some satirical verses in 
the Journal, and accused him of 

"Using 'Columbia's Balm' to make iiis whiskers grow, 
As forked as three WWW's all standing in a row." 

The first moustache that appears of record was worn 
by the then young 'Than West forty years ago or 
thereabouts, as perpetuated in a young lady's poetical 
6 



address to some of the young bloods of the town. 
She refers to the ornament in speaking of Mr. West's 
avoidance of young ladies, — 

"For fear that they should kiss him, 
Has raised a thorn-hedge on his lip." 

The best-known wearer of the moustache, how- 
ever, and the most effective agent of its diffusion in 
respectable society was Mr. Charles W. Cady, one 
of the first insurance men of early times. Beards 
began to " increase and multiply" in area and num- 
ber before the civil war. That momentous experi- 
ence was the end alike of slavery and universal 
shaving. 

A case related by Mr. Smith illustrates the slender 
respect with which the early settlers sometimes re- 
garded the law and its ministers. A grand jury, 
while Mr. Fletcher was prosecutor, had found an 
indictment against a man for selling liquor without 
a license, much the most frequent offense of that 
time. The foreman of the grand jury refused to 
sign it ; the prosecutor urged it. " I shall do no 
such thing, Mr. Fletcher ; I sell whiskey without a 
license myself, and I shall not indict others for what 
I do." " If you don't sign it I will take you before 
Judge Wick." " What do I care for Judge Wick? 
he knows nothing about such matters." " The grand 
jury will follow me into court." In the court-room, 
" This foreman of the grand jury refuses to sign his 
name to a bill of indictment against a man for selling 
whiskey without a license." Judge Wick : " Have 
twelve of the jury agreed to find the bill ?" " Yes, 
eighteen of them." " Foreman, do you refuse to 
sign the bill ?" " I do." " Well, Mr. Prosecutor, I 
see no other way than to leave him to his conscience 
and his God ; the grand jury will return to their 
room." In the jury-room the foreman said, "I told 
you Judge Wick knew nothing about such cases." 
Mr. Fletcher : " I am only taking legal steps to have 
the bill signed." " What are you going to do now? 
what are you stripping off your coat for?" "The 
law requires the last step to be taken." " What is 
that ?" " To thrash you till you sign the bill." 
" Don't strike, Mr. Fletcher, and I'll sign." He did, 
and the jury returned to the court-room. " Has the 



82 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



foreman signed the bill ?" " He has.' " I thought 
his conscience would not let him rest till he had 
signed it." 

Pertinent to this connection is Mr. Smith's account 
of the hardships of a political campaign. A year or 
so after the removal of the capital to Indianapolis he 
was a candidate for Congress in the eastern district 
of the State, then extending the whole length of the 
State pretty nearly. In a portion wholly unsettled 
he hired an Indian guide. They swam some of the 
streams on their ponies, but at last found one they 
could not cross in that way. 

" The moment we reached the river the Indian 
jumped down, peeled some bark from a hickory sap- 
ling, and spanceled the fore legs of the ponies ; I 
sat down on the bank. The Indian was out of sight 
in a moment in the woods, and I saw nothing of him 
for an hour, when he returned with the bark of a 
hickory-tree about twelve feet long and three feet in 
diameter. The bark was metamorphosed into a round- 
bottomed Indian canoe when the sun was about an 
hour high. The canoe was launched, my saddle, 
saddle-bags, and blanket placed in one end, and I got 
in the other. With my weight the edges were about 
an inch above the water. I took the paddle, and by 
the use of the current landed safely on the other 
side," paying the Indian two dollars for his services. 

During the rather indefinite period covered by this 
attempt to present an idea of the condition of the 
settlement aside from its material changes (loosely 
put at twenty years), there had been organized some 
ten churches, — one Baptist, two Presbyterian, two 
Methodist, two Lutheran, one Christian, one Catholic, 
one Episcopal, and all had places of worship of their 
own. The intention here is not to present a summary 
of the condition of the religious element of the settle- 
ment at this time, but merely to notice some of the 
early fashions and forms of public religious conduct. 
Until near the close of this first twenty years of the set- 
tlement the forms of worship, except in the Episcopal 
and Catholic Churches, were not so fixed as they are 
now. They were controlled more by the wish of the 
preacher or the impulse of the occasion. A written 
sermon was an unknown performance to many of the 
pioneers, and to some of them would have looked like 



a profanation. Choirs were unknown until introduced 
by Henry Ward Beecher, except in churches with 
established rituals. Mr. Beecher's brother, Rev. 
Charles, an accomplished musician, was the first 
choir- leader of a non-ritualistic service. Among the 
first choristers were Mrs. Dr. Ackley, Mr. John L. 
Ketcham, Lawrence M. Vance, A. G. Willard, 
Augustus Smith. The churches generally held to 
congregational singing, which was led by some man 
with an approved voice and taste, who could be 
trusted to select a good air of the right metre, and 
start it with a pitch that all could readily follow. 
Not unfrequently the starting was a volunteer effort, 
coming from some one in the body of the congrega- 
tion with a pet tune for the special metre of the oc- 
casion. Familiar hymns were sung right along, with 
or without books ; but when there were no books or 
but few, and for a good while after they became com- 
mon, the preacher would " line out" the hymn, or 
" deacon" it, as the Yankees called it, by reading two 
lines and waiting for the congregation to sing them 
before reading another couplet. This would produce 
an odd effect now to most hearers, even to those who 
were familiar with it in childhood and youth, but it 
certainly in no measure or way affected the solemnity 
or sincerity of the worship. Sermons, as before re- 
marked, were unwritten, and not unfrequently unpre- 
pared,- — by no means identical conditions necessarily, 
but often made so. They were uniformly longer than 
now, an hour being neither an unusual nor unreason- 
able duration. Probably they exercised a stronger im- 
mediate influence on the feelings of the audience than 
their shorter, pithier, more methodical and logical 
successors from the writing-desk do now. There was 
room for dramatic action and effect, for variety of 
tone and feeling, for a vigor that comes involuntarily 
with a fresh thought, and there is not much chance 
for these agencies of oratory to get at an audience 
through a carefully thought out and written out 
sermon of the year of grace 1883. 

There were a few hymns so popular from their 
spirit or the air usually associated with them that 
everybody knew them. One of the finest of these is 
still unmatched in sacred hymnology for the pious 
pertinence of the poetry or the spirited but stately 



MUSIC. 



83 



movement of the music, — •' Am I a soldier of the j 
cross?" Another was "Come, thou fount of every 
blessing," frequently sung to the air that Rousseau 
dreamed ; a third was " Come, humble sinner," the 
air of which was a " minor" evidently adapted from an 
old Irish air called the " Peeler and the Goat" ; an- 
other, sung by John Brown on the scaffold, " Blow ye 
the trumpet, blow" ; another, " Oh, love divine," to a 
most spirited and pleasing air that is never heard 
now. Besides these there were camp-meeting tunes 
not greatly different from some that prevail among 
the Southern colored churches now. " Old Rosin the 
Bow" was one of these, adapted, and thus first named, 
to a secular and satirical song, " Old Rossum the 
Beau," wholly Southern however; "John Brown's 
Body" was another ; and one of them was profanely 
applied by some " unrespecting boys," about the end 
of the period in question, to a comic song about 
" The Great Sea-Snake." Music was not much cul- 
tivated in a scientific or systematic way then, though 
occasional teachers formed classes and gave lessons 
from the " Missouri Harmony" in the " square note" 
system. The " round note," or " do, re" system came 
along about the time that church choirs did, and the 
diffusion of a taste for the higher kinds of music 
than ballad airs and dancing jigs came with the in- 
flux of German immigration. The adoption of the 
piano as a piece of fashionable furniture was a coeval 
movement. Musical improvement made it fashion- 
able, and it made music fashionable. 

There has been an almost complete reversal of con- 
ditions since the beginning of the period of musical 
culture. Then the young lady who could play the 
piano or " sing by note" was the exception ; now the 
young lady who cannot is the exception. Of classic 
music very little was known, so little that when 
Madame Bishop first sang here in Masonic Hall in 
November, 1851, the first time that a celebrated vo- 
calist had ever appeared here, her performance of 
" Casta Diva'' provoked a general smile, and not a 
few called it " squalling." Now there are i&yf edu- 
cated ladies in this city who are not familiar with 
most of the best-known efforts of the great composers. 
It may amuse them to learn the kind of songs that 
were usually sung for social entertainment by the 



young people who are now their parents or grand- 
parents. Along in 1837 or 1838, when work on the 
canal was going on, a song much liked by the country 
boys and girls related to that sort of occupation. It 
began in this way : '• I landed in sweet Philadelphia, 
but being quite late in the fall, I didn't stay long in 
that city, but anchored out on the canawl." Another, 
with a touch of broad humor, sang the horrors of a 
wreck on the " raging canawl" : " We had a load of 
Dutch, and we stowed 'em in the hold ; they were not 
the least concerned about the welfare of their souls. 
The captain went below, and implored them for to 
pray, but all the answer he could get was ' Ich kan 
se nich versteh'." Of the amatory kind there was 
the " Gallant Hussar," the " Minstrel returned from 
the Wars," " Gaily the Troubadour," " Barbara 
Allen," some of Burns' songs, popular everywhere, 
" William Riley," with, a few years later, a profusion 
of the earlier efforts of the colored muse, and a few 
as early as 1839 or thereabouts, such as " Jenny, git 
your hoe-cake done," " Jim Brown," " Clar de 
Kitchen," and the like. Patriotic songs were popu- 
lar and far more frequent than patriotic songs now, 
though far inferior in style and literary qualities, but 
by no means deficient in the spirit of the airs. One 
of these was known all over the West as the " Hunters 
of Kentucky," and celebrated the battle of New Or- 
leans. Another little less popular paid tribute to 
Perry and his heroes, beginning, " The tenth of Sep- 
tember let us all remember as long as the world on 
its axis rolls round." Another lamented St. Clair's 
defeat. Another crowed lustily over the victory on 
Lake Champlain, under the title, " The Noble Lads 
of Canada." The chorus of the first verses ran thus : 
" We're the noble lads of Canada, come to arms, boys, 
come !" that of the last verse, owning defeat, changed 
tone, " We've got too far from Canada, run for life, 
boys, run !" Among the settlers from Guilford 
County, N. C, there was the fag end of a queer old 
patriotic song touching the French and English wars 
of the time of Wolfe and the conquest of Canada: 
" We'll send the news to France, how we made those 
Frenchmen dance when we conquered the place 
called Belle Isle," followed by a chorus that appeared 
to be a jumble of unmeaning French words, or, if 



84 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



ever intelligible, so spoiled in pronunciation as to be 
mere gibberish. There were a number of comic 
songs that were frequently sung, of which four or 
five will serve for samples : " Poor Old Maids," 
"Near Fly-Market lived a dame," " Sukey Suds, she 
stood at her washing-tub" (a parody on " Lord 
Lovel"), " The Cork Leg," " Billy Barlow," " Three 
Jolly Welshmen," " I fell in love with a cook." 
Most of these, sentimental, patriotic, and comic, were 
contained in some of the collections called " Western 
Songster" or " Columbian Minstrel," or something 
of that kind. They are pretty much all forgotten 
now, except by an occasional relic of old times who 
retains them as indications of what old times were. 
People of education and cultivated tastes sang better 
songs, of course, but those cited were the favorites, 
or of the class of favorites of the great mass of town 
and country people. 

During this period of comparatively primitive con- 
ditions of life there was a steady increase of both edu- 
cational facilities and of the disposition to use them. 
The schools were all private, however, taught for two 
to four dollars a quarter per pupil, sometimes in pri- 
vate houses, sometimes in churches, and sometimes 
in buildings erected or altered purposely for them. 
The elementary course of instruction was much the 
same as in all schools of that time, and not greatly 
different from what it is now, — " Kirkham's Gram- 
mar," " Olney's Geography," " Pike's Arithmetic," 
" English Reader" or " School Companion," " Day's 
Algebra." The " Anthon Classics" and " Davies' 
Mathematics" came later. " Webster's Spelling- 
Book" was first seen here about 1833, shortly pre- 
ceding the other illumination from the great star 
shower in November. It was blue bound, and 
actually " in boards." The sides were made of thin 
veneers of sugar or beech apparently, pasted over 
with blue paper, and the usual calamity of the text- 
book was a back split and more or less of it torn off. 
The blackboard was not generally used, except in the 
town. Classic studies were rather unusual till the 
second decade of the settlement was well advanced. 
Music was taught to the boys in the " Old Seminary" 
by Rev. James S. Kemper and his brother, and in 
the female seminaries of course. With the County 



Seminary and the rival schools that followed it, and 
the female schools of higher pretensions than the 
mixed schools that had preceded them, which also 
came in the track of the Old Seminary, came a more 
extended course of study. In not a few cases it cov- 
ered as thorough a reading of the usual classic authors 
as any Western college, and the mathematical course 
ran the whole length of the science, from algebra and 
Euclid to the " Differential Calculus" and " McLau- 
rin's Theorem." So far in advance of the general 
mathematical instruction of the period was the course 
pursued in the " Old Seminary" that Mr. Kemper's 
class in "analytical geometry" had to copy his manu- 
script treatise on " Conic Sections," prepared by the 
late celebrated astronomer. Professor Mitchell, but 
never published, and study that. A fanciful but by 
no means idle variation of the usual school course 
was introduced here about 1843 or 1844 by an itin- 
erant teacher, who made a specialty of geography, 
and taught it by the " singing" method. A large 
map of one of the continents was set where all could 
see it, and the teacher with a long stick would point 
to one object and another, and call its name in a sort 
of sing-song or " intoning" fashion, and the pupils 
would repeat it after him. He would take the bays 
along the ocean coast, for instance, beginning with 
the most northerly, and call them over in this sing- 
ing way in exact succession, going back to the first 
after each addition, thus keeping the whole series 
constantly in mind, and repeating it till it became 
fixed and indelible. Location was, in a general way, 
conveyed in the order of names, and the teacher's 
stick helped its deflniteness by indicating it on the 
map as the name was sung. In the same way the 
capes, lakes, rivers, capitals, principal cities, and 
other important geographical features were taught 
more rapidly and effectively than by the humdrum 
method of ordinary schools. The lessons drew large 
audiences to the Methodist Church, where they were 
given. Lessons in penmanship were given by the 
usual infallible methods in from six to a dozen lessons 
by wandering teachers ; so was music, and occasion- 
ally modern languages. French was always taught in 
the female seminaries, and was also taught in the 
" Old Seminary" by Mr. Kemper, and in " Franklin 



GENERAL DESCRIPTION OF PIONEER LIFE. 



85 



Institute" by Mr. Marston, but German was never 
taught at all, or only in a very few unsuspected cases, 
till about 1848, when Professor Samuel K. Hoshour, 
afterwards president of Butler University, and one 
of the most noted teachers of Eastern Indiana, formed 
a German class here, and Mr. Paul Geiser, a young 
German of good abilities and attainments, then editing 
the Volksblatt, the first German paper here, taught a 
private class for a short time. 

The games of the pupils were much the same as 
now, — tops, marbles, hop-scotch, ball, prisoner's base, 
shinny. The games requiring room were more com- 
mon then, because adequate room cannot be had 
now, and it was all around most school-houses forty 
or more years ago. Several forms of ball games were 
practiced, — " cat," with one or two bases, " town ball," 
very similar to base ball, ''bull-pen," "ante and over," 
" hand up," the last three rarely seen or heard of 
since the town began filling up. In "bull-pen" four 
corners were occupied by four players, who threw 
the ball from one to the other till one saw a chance 
to hit one of the players in the square, called the 
" pen," who ran constantly from one part to another, 
to keep at the greatest distance from the ball. If 
he missed he was out. If he hit, the boy who was 
hit or any one in the "pen" who got the ball 
first threw it at any one of the corner players who 
was handiest, and if he was hit he was out ; if he 
was not, the other was out. In " hand up" the ball 
was knocked against a wall with the bare hand, usually 
at the "bounce." In "ante and over," or " antuy 
over," the players stood in two groups, one on each 
side of the school-house. The one with the ball 
threw it over the house, calling out " ante and over." 
If the other side caught it they ran round the house 
to hit some of the players of the throwing side. 
Shinny, though, was the king game of the school-boy 
of the latter part of this period. It was played with 
a stout club curved at the bottom. — young sugars 
were usually taken, as their roots ran close along 
the surface of the ground, — and frequently charred 
to make them hard and prevent them from splinter- 
ing in their violent collisions with stones and gravelly 
surfaces. A ball, usually of wood, a couple of inches 
in diameter, was the other implement of the game. 



The players were arrayed in lines facing each other, 
their respective goals or " homes" being the limits of 
the play-ground. The game was for one side or the 
other to carry the ball " home" against the resistance 
of the other side trying to carry it to their " home." 
Two players in the middle began the game by one 
taking the ball and calling to the other, " high buck 
or low doe," and throwing the ball in the air or on 
the ground according to the answer. The struggles 
were violent always, and the misdirected blows some- 
times serious ; scalps were laid open, legs lamed, eyes 
blacked, fingers and noses broken, shins skinned or 
bruised. A hard shinny player was rarely without a 
sore or limp or sprain somewhere. Though abandoned 
long ago by the school-boys of the later generation, 
partly from its violence and partly from the lack of 
convenient room, shinny is still revived at the annual 
reunions of the " Old Seminary Boys," who, if they 
did not intend it, made it the ruling game of the 
time forty odd years ago. And the bald-headed 
grandfathers who play it now — the judges, gen- 
erals, preachers, editors, doctors, legislators — some- 
times exhibit a good deal of the skill they learned 
before the " hard cider" campaign of 1840. The 
history and condition of the schools will be treated 
in a special division of the work. The purpose here 
is merely to notice such incidental subjects connected 
with the schools and pupils of early times as will 
give the reader some idea of them beyond their 
studies, and that could not be so readily introduced 
into the body of a work dealing with public afiairs. 

The reference to the occupations and diversions of 
the school-boy of the first generation would be incom- 
plete if it omitted an account of one almost universal 
duty and one entirely universal diversion. Driving 
cows to pasture and home was the duty, and swimming 
was the amusement. A large portion of the donation 
outside the old plat of the town was used as farm- 
land and pastures, with no small share of the vacant 
squares inside the town limits. For a trifle a cow- 
owner, and that was pretty much everybody that had 
a house and family, could rent one of these pastures, 
keep a cow from straying, keep her well fed, and have 
her handy whenever she was wanted. A boy any- 
where from six to sixteen could drive her out in the 



86 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



moroing after milking and back in the evening after 
school. It was something for idle hands to do. Cow- 
driving was a part of every Indianapolis boy's disci- 
pline in early times. Of course he got fun out of it 
as well in gathering nuts, chasing ground-squirrels, 
or taking surreptitious swims. The chief " swimming- 
holes" in the creek were Noble's and Morris', the 
former on the property of Governor Noble, near Market 
Street and the creek, the latter just south of the house 
of Morris Morris on South Meridian Street. The spot 
is now covered by the south side of the Union Depot. 
In the river the larger boys made their favorite resort 
at the "snag," near the site of Kingan's upper pork- 
house. The " tumbles" of the canal, or rather of the 
"race" from it into the river, one in the Military 
Ground at the north end of the basin, the other at the 
river, where it still remains close to the water-works, 
were also favorite bathing-places. It is among the 
amusing traditions of the adventures of the boys in 
their indulgence of this diversion that one Sunday, 
instead of decorously betaking themselves to Sunday- 
school, a dozen or so slipped off to Morris' hole. James 
Blake found it out, and mounted his horse, called his 
colored man to follow him, and went down to the 
" old swimming-hole." The darkey captured the 
clothes unperceived, and gave them up suit at a time 
as his master directed till all were dressed. Then the 
old superintendent started the darkey ahead, kept the 
frightened boys close together following, and brought 
up the rear himself to prevent escapes. Thus the 
delinquent procession marched up to the old Presby- 
terian Church, on North Pennsylvania Street, and 
the " hookey players" were forced to do proper Sun- 
day duty. It was said that the stern old Puritan 
even ventured to give some of them an occasional 
clip with his whip as a reminder of their double sin 
of running away from school and enjoying themselves 
on Sunday. 

James Blake was the son of James Blake who 
came from Ireland in 1774, and lived to the age of 
ninety-nine years, being among the earliest settlers of 
York County, Pa., where his son was born March 3, 
1791. He when a youth enlisted in the war of 1812, 
and marched to Baltimore when that city was threat- 
ened by the British forces, serving in the army until 



the declaration of peace in 181.5. He then resumed his 
trade of a wagoner, and drove a six-horse team between 
Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. In November, 1818, he 
started on horseback for the West, going as far as St. 
Louis, and returning the following spring to complete 
arrangements for a final removal thither. On the 
25th of July, 1821, he settled at Indianapolis, where 
he resided until his death. His history for fifty years 
was the history of Indianapolis, and no citizen has 
ever been more closely identified with the rise and 
progress of the city and its philanthropic and benevo- 
lent institutions than he. He, with Nicholas McCarty 
and James M. Ray, nearly fifty years ago built the 
first steam-mill in Indianapolis, and thus was the pio- 
neer in the manufacturing which is now so vital an 
element in the city's prosperity. As a surveyor, he 
assisted in laying out and platting the city. He was 
selected as commissioner to receive plans and proposals 
for the old State-House. He was the first to urge 
upon the Legislature the importance of establishing a 
hospital for the insane, and opened a correspondence 
with the Eastern States on the subject. To him was 
intrusted the duty of selecting a location for that in- 
stitution. He was an early friend and member of the 
first board of directors of the Madison and Indianap- 
olis Railroad, and was also director of the Lafayette 
and Indianapolis Railroad. He was a trustee of 
Hanover College, Indiana, and of the Miami Univer- 
sity, of Oxford, Ohio, and at his death the Indiana 
commissioner for the erection of the Gettysburg 
Monument. For thirty-five years he was president 
of the Indianapolis Benevolent Society, and present 
at every anniversary with two exceptions. In 1847 
he was the most liberal contributor to the relief of 
starving Ireland. Mr. Blake was a prime mover in 
the organization of the Indiana Branch of the Amer- 
ican Colonization Society. He was the founder of 
the Indianapolis Rolling-Mill, and embarked a large 
part of his fortune in that undertaking, having also 
started the first wholesale dry-goods house. On all pub- 
lic occasions Mr. Blake was looked to as the leader and 
manager of aff'airs. When the people of Indianapolis 
assembled to pay a tribute of respect to a deceased 
President, Governor, or other great man, Mr. Blake 
was selected to conduct and manage the matter. 





V/^/^^ 



GENERAL DESCRIPTION OF PIONEER LIFE. 



87 



When Kossuth, the distinguished HuDgarian, visited 
iDdiana, when the soldiers returned from the Mexican 
war, when the farmers came in with a procession of 
wagons filled with food and supplies for soldiers' fami- 
lies, when the Indiana soldiers came home from the 
South, Mr. Blake was the marshal of the day, and no 
public pageant seemed complete without him. His 
whole life was crowned with useful labors. There 
was, in fact, no enterprise or movement appealing to 
public spirit in which Mr. Blake was not conspicuous, 
constant, and efficient. He was among the first to 
organize a Sunday-school in the city of Indianapolis, 
and was ever foremost in this Christian work. For 
thirty years his majestic form headed the long and 
beautiful array of Sunday-school children in their 
Fourth of July celebration. In the temperance 
movement as in other matters he was a leader, and 
his adhesion to the Democracy was first broken by 
its conflict with his former adhesion to the cause of 
temperance. He was the patriarch of his church, 
admired and revered by all. In every relation of 
life — as head of a family, leader of society, chief of 
his church, or manager of business enterprises — he 
was always foremost, always honored, equally for his 
power and his disinterestedness. If Mr. Blake had 
pursued his own advantage with half the zeal he de- 
voted to the service of others and the good of the 
city, he might easily have counted his wealth by mil- 
lions. His ambition to become a useful citizen and a 
public benefactor outweighed all other considerations. 
He was not politically ambitious, and never held 
public office other than that of county commissioner. 
His desire for power never seemed to extend beyond 
the command of a Sunday-school procession or the 
presidency of a charitable meeting. The city of 
Indianapolis lost in him a man of intrinsic worth and 
a useful citizen, and the community a kind and sym- 
pathizing friend. Mr. Blake was married in March, 
1831, to Miss Eliza Sproule, of Baltimore, to whom 
were born four children, — William McConnell, James 
Ray, Walter Alexander (deceased), and John Gurley. 
The death of James Blake occurred Nov. 26, 1870. 

A prominent figure in the memories of most school- 
boys of that day is Henry Hoagland, the idiot son of 
a bricklayer of high respectability and good sense. 



Henry was a mere animal, with no human sense and 
hardly any human expression. He wandered harm- 
lessly everywhere, bareheaded and barefooted, because 
he preferred to be, carefully avoided by very small 
children and carefully followed and incessantly tor- 
mented by larger ones, who wanted to hear his queer 
muddled oaths and gabble. Sometimes he was dan- 
gerous when worried by his nimble persecutors too 
far, and he frequently frightened women in his furious 
moods and sometimes hurt the boys he caught. He 
was kept at the " County Asylum" or " Poor-House" 
for many years after it was put in condition for the 
care of such inmates, but he frequently got away and 
wandered into town. Another of later arrival and 
pleasanter character was John D. Hopkins, who ap- 
peared here first in the latter part of the second decade 
of the settlement, bareheaded and barefooted, with a 
Bible or hymn-book in his hand, and walking at a 
brisk pace with a peculiar stifi"-kneed step along the 
streets talking to himself. At times he would mount 
a horse-block or a goods-box, sing a hymn of his own 
making, and preach a wild, rambling sermon. Very 
early among his visits here he brought with him a 
number of sheet-copies of a song he called the " Good 
Gathering," sung to an old camp-meeting tune. These 
he sold, and he supported himself on such little gratui- 
ties as the crowd that stopped to hear him sing or to 
joke with him would give him. The song may be 
judged by one couplet, — 

'*Good gathering is sailing around, round, and rounds 
Amidst many waters and hath no bounds; 
Come join the good gathering army," 

the last a refrain to every couplet. During the po- 
litical campaigns he changed from a preacher to a 
stumper, and made speeches at five cents apiece on 
any side the purchaser wished. He was said to have 
entered the army during the civil war, and died there. 
At all events he has not been seen here since, and had 
not but rarely for some time before. He was believed 
very generally to be careful of his money, and to have 
bought a good farm with it. At least he was sober, 
healthy, unusually robust, and when he chose to work 
few could equal him. His wanderings appear to have 
been the efi'ect of a sort of periodic mental disturb- 
ance. Another well-known character of this period 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



was " Old Charley," a withered, weak-minded old 
colored man, who was the first auction bell-ringer here. 
There was nothing about him to make him noted but 
the fact that everybody saw him oftener than anybody 
else who was not in the family. His bent form, his 
old plug hat with an auction-bill tied in front, his 
noisy bell, traveling up and down Washington Street, 
were as familiar to every man, woman, and child as 
the court-house steeple. Dr. Cool, in his later years, 
became a sort of public character in consequence of 
his constant drunkenness. He came here in 1821, 
an experienced and reputable physician, but bad 
habits got the mastery of him, and in his last years 
he was little better than a vagrant. 

Joe Lawson, known to both the early and later 
generation for his vagrancy, oddity, " dirt," and oc- 
casional gleams of wit and sense, figured contempo- 
raneously in part with Hopkins and Old Charley, but 
not so conspicuously as later. He was the brother of 
the wife of Dr. Soule, one of the earliest resident 
dentists, and son of Bishop Soule, of Tennessee. 
It was said Joe was always dirty, harmless, and good- 
humored, too much crippled to work, and too much 
indisposed if he had not been incapacitated. He 
usually lived on the " crumbs" of hotel tables, and 
wore any clothes that anybody gave him. No human 
being in forty years or more has seen him clean and 
decently dressed. He used to make great fun for the 
boys and for members of the Legislature by singing 
sentimental songs and reciting Shakespeare. He 
lived at the County Asylum a long time, and was 
then brought to the city, given a little shanty in 
Blake's woods, and supported by contributions of old 
residents. The last of the Indianapolis characters 
was the late John Givan. He and his brother James 
came here in 1820, in the fall or winter, opened one 
of the earliest stores here, and were botli among the 
most prominent and active citizens. John was one 
of the half-dozen or more candidates for recorder at 
the first county election in April, 1822. After the 
death of his brother his business declined, and he be- 
came a sort of " old junk" dealer near the court- 
house. Then he quit all pretence of merchandising 
and lived a loose, half-vagrant life, supporting him- 
self mainly by little services for men occupying rooms 



in connection with their offices, and by serving as 
nurse to sick men who had no families or home. 
The last four or five years were smoothed for him by 
a provision made up by the Board of Trade and 
other business men, of which a committee used to 
clothe, house, and feed him comfortably. It was a 
tribute to the remains of the oldest merchant in the 
city and the remains of a once honorable and esti- 
mable man. Liquor ruined him, but to the last his 
memory was amazingly tenacious of dates and little 
events of the early history of Indianapolis, and he 
was always more than ready to tell them to anybody. 
He died three or four years ago. 

Among the early settlers were a good many from 
the slave States of the class since widely known as 
" poor whites," who brought here all the silly super- 
stitions they had learned among the slaves at home. 
A belief in witchcraft was the most conspicuous of 
these, with a score of omens and portents and pro- 
phetic dreams. Some of this class used to talk of a 
widow by the name of Myers, whose husband had a 
pottery where the Chamber of Commerce is, as a 
witch and liaving bewitched the cows of several of 
the neighbors whom she had a grudge against. The 
persecuted cattle either gave no milk or gave bloody 
milk, or the milk would not churn to any purpose, — 
" the butter would not come," as they called it, — and 
the calves died, or the cows had " hollow horn" or 
the " tail-worm," all the efiect of witchcraft. No one 
of the set seemed to think it possible the ailments 
were the effect of natural causes. Some sort of 
remedy was applied, partly of mild incantation and 
partly of suitable medicine, but nobody ever learned 
the composition of eitheT. 

In one case the victim was a boy of a family by 
the name of Catlin, or something like it, living on 
the southeast corner of Alabama and Washington 
Streets. Who tlie victimizing witch was does not 
appear to have been known. The boy was ailing and 
distressed, and witchcraft was finally decided to be 
the source of the trouble, and Dr. John L. Rich- 
mond, pastor of the Baptist Church as well as prac- 
ticing physician, was applied to for an effective exor- 
cism of the evil spirit. The old doctor was a good 
deal of a wag as well as a shrewd, hard-headed man. 



GENERAL DESCRIPTION OF PIONEER LIFE. 



89 



aud he concluded that a remedy adapted to the faith 
and brains of the family would be the best he could 
use, so he arranged with one of his students, Mr. 
Barrett, a brother of Mrs. Bolton, the Hoosier poet- 
ess, to play the defeated and exorcised witch when 
the proper ceremonies had been completed. He com- 
pounded in the presence of the awe-struck family a 
charm of magic power in the shape of a ball of cat's 
hair, hog's lard, and a lot of other Macbeth remedies, 
and after a proper incantation, with many flourishes 
and ceremonies, threw the ball into the fire. The lard 
blazed up at once, and as it burned out the lights 
were put out, till at last all was dark, and then Bar- 
rett, the witch, ran through the house sprinkling 
beef blood as he went, to indicate that the witch's 
blood had been spilt and her power was at an end. 
The victim was cured at once, but was attacked again 
in a week or two and another ceremony applied. 
What the outcome was the legend does not relate. 
The incident is worth preserving to show that the 
negroes of the South who believe in voodoo and 
fetish are not so much more ignorant than some of 
the white ancestors of the city as we should like to 
believe. 

Among the fancies of this past generation was one 
that if a boy killed a toad his father's cow would 
give bloody milk ; if a man met a funeral procession, 
and did not turn back and accompany it, the next 
procession would be his own ; if a knife was dropped 
from the table a visitor was coming ; if the nose 
itched a visitor was likely to come ; if a dog howled 
long at night a death was soon going to occur in the 
house ; if a cat rubbed its face frequently the weather 
was going to be dry ; if one pared his nails on Sun- 
day he'd be made ashamed of something before the 
end of the week ; if he killed a snake and left it 
lying belly upward there would be rain before night ; 
the first note of a dove in the spring would be heard 
in the direction in which the hearer would travel 
farthest that year ; a new moon lying flat on its 
back portends a dry moon, because the water cannot 
get out of the hollow of the crescent, but if it is 
sloping or vertical the omen is of a wet month, be- 
cause the hollow can be emptied, — this is an Indian 
fancy ; water in which a gold coin has lain for some 



hours is a remedy for scrofula ; abundance of dog- 
fennel indicates a sickly season ; dreams were accepted 
as •' signs,'' and " dream books" were no unusual 
accompaniment of combs and brushes on a woman's 
toilet table. 

The Hoosier dialect has been frequently attempted 
by authors of more or less pretension, but with no 
great success. "The Hoosier Schoolmaster," though 
written professedly as a picture of Hoosier life and 
language, misses the latter sometimes as badly as an 
Englishman misses the Yankee dialect. Our young 
poet, James W. Riley, strikes it more fairly than 
any other delineator, but some of its peculiarities, 
or those of the people using it, which gave it a tone 
and a turn of humor similar to that noticed in the 
Lowland dialect of the Scotch, had measurably dis- 
appeared before Mr. Riley was old enough to catch 
it in its full-grown raciness and quaintness. If he 
were twenty years older, we might expect from him 
as perfect a picture of Hoosier backwoods life as we 
have of the South in " Georgia Scenes" and " Simon 
Suggs," or of Yankee land in the " Bigelow Papers." 
The prevailing dialect of Indiana was that of the 
South. The bulk of the first settlers were from 
Kentucky or Tennessee or the Carolinas through 
the older portions of this State, or of Ohio some- 
times, sometimes by direct immigration. The East- 
ern immigration was mostly modified into a Western 
tone by a preceding residence in some part of the 
West. Thus little of the Yankee got here in so 
decided a form as to stay or afi'ect the conditions 
around it. Correct pronunciation was positively 
regarded by the Southern immigration as a mark of 
aristocracy or, as they called it, " quality," and the 
children in some cases discountenanced in acquiring 
or using it. The " ing" in " evening" or " morning" 
or any other words was softened into " in'," the full 
sound being held finical and " stuck up." So it was 
no unusual thing to hear such a comical string of 
emasculated " nasals" as the question of a promi- 
nent Indiana lawyer of the Kentucky " persuasion," 
" Where were you a standin' at the time of your 
perceivin' of the hearin' of the firin' of the pistol ?" 
Other mispronunciations went to the Hoosier shibbo- 
leth, as tenaciously maintained as this. To " set" 



90 



HISTOKY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MAKION COUNTY. 



■was the right way to " sit" ; an Indian did not 
" scalp," he " skelped" ; a murderer did not " stab," 
he " stabbed" ; a child did not " long" for a thing, he 
" honed" for it, — slang retains this Hoosier archaism ; 
a woman was not " dull," she was " daunsy" ; com- 
monly a gun was "shot" instead of ''fired" in all moods 
and tenses. Indianapolis usually lost the first three 
syllables and became " Nopolis." It took the life- 
time of a generation to teach the country settler to 
twist the " dia" of Indianapolis into the Yankee 
" j" and make " Injenapolis" of it. Most of them 
do not do it fully yet, and probably never will. One 
good feature of the backwoods dialect was that it 
had no euphemisms. There were no delicate names 
for dirty things. If a woman's virtue was smirched 
she was not a " courtesan," or even a " prostitute," 
the name was hard Saxon. A drunken man was not 
" intoxicated," or " tight," or " full," or " slewed," 
or " screwed," he was plain drunk. It was an 
honest dialect. 

The race prejudices of the South were imported 
with its dialect into the New Purchase in full vigor. 
The colored man counted for little and claimed noth- 
ing. The inborn tribal animosity of the time occa- 
sionally broke out in riots, the only serious disturb- 
ances of the peace ever known here till the outbreak 
of the civil war. Probably the first exhibition of it 
was the meanest, though the least violent. Cader 
Carter, a quadroon, with the unmistakable eyes and 
heavy features of his colored ancestors, was an un- 
usually active politician of the Gen. Jackson school. 
He lived in 1836 or thereabouts with Jesse Wright, 
one of the leading Democrats of the county and at 
one time one of the County Board. When Mr. 
Wright was a candidate he was warmly opposed, and 
Carter made himself conspicuously active for his patron. 
The opposing party resolved to put Carter out of the 
fight and the election by drawing his colored blood, 
so to speak, and they proved bis African contamina- 
tion beyond the legal limit, and the active and blatant 
politician was silenced. The Whigs did that. When, 
as heretofore noticed, the public works in this State 
were abandoned in 1838-39, a large body of idle and 
worthless men were left here to live as they could. 
They soon made quarrels with the few colored resi- 



dents here, and several times the)' attempted to mob 
a family by the name of Overall, living on what was 
then open ground a little east of the Military Ground, 
between Market and Ohio Streets. The negroes de- 
fended themselves with fire-arms, and the mob suc- 
ceeded in doing nothing more than making an alarm 
a few times. Not long after the completion of the 
first Episcopalian Church in 1838, a young lady was 
brought here from the East to play the organ. With 
her came her sister, who married a colored man within 
a few months after her arrival. The aflfair got wind 
in some way, and a mob of unruly men and half- 
grown boys, led by Josiah Simcox, surrounded the 
house containing the bridal party and captured the 
groom. The bride was not badly used, but the col- 
ored offender was ridden on a rail (it is not believed 
that he was tarred and feathered to any distressing 
extent) and warned to leave, which he and his wife 
did at once. In 18-15, some years beyond the limit 
of the period to which this sketch of the social and 
moral condition of the city and adjacent country re- 
lates, but logically connected with the subject of race 
prejudices, a negro by the name of John Tucker was 
murdered by a mob, near the corner of Illinois and 
Washington Streets, on the Fourth of July. As 
usually happens in such cases, the least guilty of the 
offenders was caught and punished, the worst escaped 
and never returned. It may be noted here that the 
leader of the mob in the miscegenation case never 
dared to return to the town openly, though he did 
secretly at times. The only other disturbance of the 
public peace that originated in race prejudice oc- 
curred at the election in 1875. One negro was 
killed and one or two others hurt. The police were 
mixed in it, and it was at least as much a political 
as tribal difficulty. The colored citizens of Indianap- 
olis have been in the main as orderly, respectable, and 
industrious as any class of the population. 

If the Southern immigrant brought his dialect and 
race prejudices, the Eastern immigrant brought his 
bigotry in no less fullness of fragrance, and made the 
whole social structure redolent of it. Maj. Carter's 
antipathy to the fiddle, as related in Mr. Nowland's 
anecdote, was but a slight exaggeration of the feeling 
1 of a large element of the community. Social pleas- 



GENERAL DESCRIPTION OF PIONEER LIFE. 



91 



ures, pleasant games, dances were discountenanced 
as downright immoral or tending in that direction. 
It is only within the last two decades that dances at 
private houses have been conceded a reputable char- 
acter not inconsistent with religious duty. Many a 
gay young soul has been '• hauled over the coals" by 
elders and pastors for dancing, and it is barely twenty- 
five years since the Widows' and Orphans' Society 
squarely refused a benefit tendered it by Mr. Sher- 
lock, of the old Metropolitan Theatre, soon after its 
opening, in the fall of 1858. The society needed 
money badly, and had been begging for contributions. 
The benefit would have given it full five hundred 
dollars. But the Puritanical exacerbations that came 
in the early settlement of the place condemned the 
theatre as immoral, and would have none of its avails. 
The male advisers of the female directors so decided, 
and so it was done. It did not occur to them that 
Christ never asked the young man to whom he said, 
" Go sell that thou hast and give to the poor," 
whether his father had made his money by selling 
rotten olives in Tyre or charging Pompey's soldiers 
five prices for wheat. As long as he came by it 
fairly and could use it for good, it was to be used for 
good. Ten years afterwards this same society sup- 
ported and conducted an amateur dramatic exhibition 
of regular stage comedies to raise money it needed, 
showing what a change in public sentiment had been 
made in the period including the war and a few years 
of peace at either end of it. Now social dances are 
as common as social conversations. Clubs for diver- 
sion or instruction are to be counted by scores. Dra- 
matic societies, operatic associations, masquerades, 
fancy dress balls, and all manner of forbidden delights 
are held as innocent as the old-time " singing-school" 
and " quilting" or " corn-shucking." 

Among the notable exhibitions of religious zeal in 
the latter part of the period covered by this sketch 
were public debates on points of sectarian theology. 
Challenges were issued by denominational " sluggers" 
in the very spirit of a challenge to Hanlon for a 
rowing match or to SchaflFer for a game of billiards, 
except that there was no "stake" and no "gate- 
money." They were really an opportunity for a little 
personal parade, and that was no doubt the frequent 



motive of them, though the parties persuaded them- 
selves they were doing the Lord's service therein. 
Probably nobody was ever converted by such discus- 
sions, except from a moderate into a bigoted sectarian. 
The old denominations were not forward in these 
demonstrations. They took the defensive against the 
attacks of recent organizations like the " Disciples," 
as they were then called, now the " Christians," and 
by nickname always " Campbellites," and the Univer- 
salists. It was as common to see challenges from 
noted debaters of those denominations in their de- 
nominational papers as it is to see boxing or rowing 
challenges now in sporting papers. The first one was 
held in the early part of 1830, beginning January 
21st, on the subject of " Eternal Punishment," be- 
tween Rev. Edwin Ray, a distinguished pioneer Meth- 
odist preacher, and Rev. Jonathan Kidwell, a Uni- 
versalist. Probably the most noted of these debates 
occurred in 1838, between Rev. John O'Kane, a dis- 
tinguished evangelist of the " Disciples," and Rev. 
Mr. Haines, a Baptist at Belleville, Hendricks Co. 
Several have been held in the city the last ten or a 
dozen years ago between President Burgess, of But- 
ler University, and ReV. W. W. Curry, the one a 
" Christian," the other a Universalist. One day in 
1840, while the excitement of the " log cabin and 
hard cider" campaign was at its height and had filled 
" Main Street" — as Washington Street was then 
called — with a big Whig procession and the attendant 
crowd, Mr. O'Kane and Henry Ward Beecher met 
on the corner where the Palmer House (now Occi- 
dental) was in course of erection, and good-humoredly 
discussed polities during the passing of the procession, 
but getting upon more familiar ground when it had 
passed, talked of religious matters, and Mr. O'Kane 
said, "Suppose we have a debate on it." "No," 
said Mr. Beecher, laughing ; " you'd use me up, and 
I can't afford to be demolished so young." It is 
worth noting that certain preachers of that early day 
were noted revivalists, as Moody and Sankey and Mr. 
Harrison are now. Edwin Ray, father of John W. 
Ray, of this city, and brother-in-law of Mr. Nowland, 
was one of these; John Strange was another, both 
Methodists. John L. Jones, a Baptist, and later a 
Christian, and James McVey, also a Christian, were 



92 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



widely known for their persuasive powers or " exhor- 
tations." They were all men of rare native eloquence, 
like Wirt's Blind Preacher, and like him almost un- 
known outside of the denominations that cherished 
and admired them. Lorenzo Dow, who preached here 
in 1827, and was once a national notoriety, was merely 
an oddity of no great force of any kind except in his 
legs, — he traveled well. 

It is not improbable that the severity of religious 
opinion held by the professedly religious settlers may 
have reacted upon the portion less rigidly trained and 
made them, externally at least, more indifferent than 
they would have been. At all events, among a con- 
siderable section of the Southern immigration dis- 
paraging or even scandalous jokes on preachers and 
prominent church members were no unusual enter- 
tainment of social or accidental gatherings. Some 
parodies of camp-meeting songs and occasional popu- 
lar phrases, now forgotten, also indicated this re- 
pellance of overstrained discipline and harsh judg- 
ment. The nickname of Rev. James Havens, " Old 
Sorrel," came in this way. The " experience" of 
" Uncle Jimmy Hittleman," an enthusiastic but illit- 
erate Methodist, of genuine piety, was a frequent 
theme of joke and coarse parody. A favorite revival 
song was made to read, — 

" I went behind a stump to pray, 
Glory hallelujah ! 
The devil came and scared me away, 
Glory hallelujah ! 
Oh, Zion hallelujah !" 

Popular phrases and proverbial sayings were some- 
times framed from this sentiment of antagonism to 
ironclad religious feeling. One man was said to 
" pray his congregation to hell and back." A 
preacher of an orthodox sect once boasted that the 
members of his church could be found " all the way 
from heaven to hell." " Yes," retorted a heterodox 
adherent of another denomination, " and the nearer 
hell the thicker you'll find them." " Grace was said 
when the hog was shot" was a common announce- 
ment at the beginning of a dinner to put aside for- 
malities. 

Until the Washingtonian temperance movement 
reached here, along in 1840 or 1841, under the lead 



of a Mr. Matthews, the use of liquor was hardly less 
general or habitual than the use of coffee. Nowa- 
days the exceptional man of good social position is 
the man who drinks publicly. In the early days 
under consideration the exceptional man was the 
man that would not drink anywhere, publicly or 
privately, though excess was rarer then than now. 
Liquor at social gatherings of the most respectable 
settlers was quite regular and in good taste, if the 
liquor was good. It was not esteemed a solecism of 
even clerical conduct for a minister to " take some- 
thing." Whiskey with tansy was considered a good 
general prophylactic, or, as Gen. S. F. Gary used to 
say, he was told by his father " it was good for 
worms" in children, and for almost anything in 
adults. Dogwood bark and prickly ash made a good 
medicine for the chills, or the whiskey they were 
soaked in. Though excess was not common, it was 
not considered so disreputable as now. A strictly 
temperance beverage, antedating lemonade and "pop," 
though very like the latter, was " spruce beer." It 
was largely consumed with the " gingerbread" of the 
period, cut in fipenny-bit squares called " quarter 
sections." This luxury was so great a favorite as to 
be very generally called " Hoosier bait." Spruce 
beer was not unfrequently made in households and 
consumed by the family like milk or coffee, youth- 
em settlers, accustomed to " persimmon beer," were 
the chief or only home manufacturers. " Mead" 
and " metheglin" were occasionally made of honey, 
but at home usually. Whiskey was different. Among 
the very first manufactured products of the settle- 
ment, as early probably as the removal of the capital, 
was whiskey distilled at the little establishment on 
the bayou, near the site of the Nordyke & Marmon 
Machine- Works, and called " Bayou Blue." It could 
not have been of a very high quality, but it was cheap 
and plenty, with occasional reinforcements brought 
by keel-boats " cordeled" up the river. Whiskey 
and gunpowder were the leading articles of importa- 
tion for a good while. In 1828 a temperance society 
was formed here, but it does not appear that any 
public or concerted effort was made to arrest drink- 
ing, though the very existence of such an association 
among the best class of citizens would have some 



DISEASES ONCE PREVALENT. 



93 



good eflFect. A change in society sentiment may 
have begun with this society, but it grew with the 
Washingtonian movement, and has grown steadily 
wider and stronger, till to-day the reversal of condi- 
tions of the use of liquor is complete. The senti- 
ment against it is as general and fixed as it was for it 
in early times. 

The reports of the Board of Health show that the 
death-rate of Indianapolis is smaller than that of 
most cities of any considerable size, and lower than 
that of Philadelphia, which is the healthiest large 
city iu the world. But, as already related, the first 
years of the settlement were disastrously unhealthy, 
and ill-repute of the place repelled settlement and de- 
layed improvement so greatly that it would hardly be 
too much to say that the ague had shaken the town 
out of five years' growth. The change has come 
slowly. The " sickly season" thirty years ago was 
as definite a dread as Indian summer is a pleasurable 
anticipation. There were plenty of old residents who 
expected the chills just as the victim of hay-fever 
expects his annual swelled nose and watery eyes. 
How this change has come, what influences have 
worked towards it, will be best exhibited in a paper 
read to the Medical Society of this county by Mr. 
George W. Sloan, of Browning & Sloan, late presi- 
dent of the National Pharmaceutical Association. 

" Those who have been engaged in the practice of 
medicine for fifteen or twenty years or longer have 
noticed a material change in many of the forms of 
disease incident to this locality, and especially a dim- 
inution in the amount of those forms commonly 
known as bilious fever and fever and ague. In the 
first place, it should be remembered that this State 
was for the most part den.sely timbered, and this was 
supplemented by a thick matting of underbrush. 
These combined influences protected the surface from 
the direct rays of the sun, hence there was but little 
chance for rapid evaporation. The result was a thick 
slimy ooze, which was kept renewed by each rain 
during the early summer months. This condition ex- 
tended over a large portion of this and adjoining 
States, especially in the valleys formed by the various 
water-courses. We there have with the addition of 
heat the proper conditions for decay and the con- 



sequent production of noxious gases incident thereto, 
which gases during the early summer are absorbed by 
the tender succulent leaves of the plants and trees. 
But as the summer advances these leaves become 
hardened by the heat and continued dryness of the 
later summer, and their power of absorption is very 
much lessened. Hence the above-mentioned products 
of decomposition were given ofi" into the atmosphere 
from an extended surface of country, and the conse- 
quent result was a poisonous air. In addition, the 
people, or at least a large portion of them, lived in 
poorly-constructed houses, often built of logs, with 
the floor resting upon the ground, and were compelled 
to breathe air tainted with decaying woody matter. 
Frequently the same apartment was used for the pur- 
poses of cooking, eating, and sleeping, while the food 
was often the same articles three times a day, — pork in ' i^V^ 
some form, corn-bread, and coffee. It would be diflS- 
cult to name three articles more difficult of digestion. 
The water was often of poor quality, owing in many 
cases to shallowness of the wells, and no care being 
taken to protect them from surface pollution. 

" From the foregoing statement of the condition of 
things within a few years past, in which we have an 
unwholesome atmosphere to breathe, poor and un- 
healthy homes to live in, indigestible food to eat, and 
polluted water to drink, is it to be wondered at that 
sickness was rife ? It is within the memory of many 
that the sick were more numerous than the well, when 
the fall sickness was as confidently expected (and the 
people were rarely disappointed) and prepared for as 
was the winter. These were the influences that made 
Indiana known as the home of fever and ague, and 
the times when one of our drug-houses could spring 
the price of quinine by simply telegraphing an order 
to the Eastern market for one or two thousand ounces 
of that staple. This State was also the paradise of 
the patent medicine men who made liver pills and ague 
remedies. 

" This condition has very materially changed within 
a few years, consequent upon a clearing off of the tim- 
ber, the ditching and draining of the swamps, and tile 
draining of the surface of the country. This, together 
with the replacing of the cabins with good brick or 
frame dwellings, with cellars, plastered walls, separate 



94 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



apartments for living, eating, and sleeping, an abund- 
ance of the best of food, pure air, and good water has 
done the work. To this also may be added an improve- 
ment in the manner of clothing. It is not many years 
since the use of woolen underclothing was the exception, 
while overcoats, especially for children, were almost 
unknown. Now all, both young and old, are clad with 
warm underwear, and in addition a majority are sup- 
plied with water-proof garments which protect them 
from the dampness. These have removed the causes 
from which a great deal of the bilious type of disease 
was derived. 

" Again, another effect of the drying of the surface 
has been to more nearly equalize the temperature of 
the days and nights. As the low, swampy morasses 
did not contain water of sufficient depth to retain an 
adequate amount of heat to radiate during the night, 
the consequence was, when the heat of day was past, 
condensation began almost simultaneously with the 
setting of the sun, the result being hot days and cool 
nights. To this latter course many thinking minds 
have attributed the so-called malarious disturbance. 
Nevertheless, my mind clings to the former, and as 
an additional argument in its favor will cite what 
frequently happens in the spring of the year, especi- 
ally in our cities, after a severe winter. The remnants 
of the last year's vegetation, with the droppings from 
domestic animals, together with the usual amount of 
kitchen refuse that finds its way into our streets and 
alleys, have accumulated during the winter months. 
This has been held solid, as it were, by the ice and 
snow until perhaps the last of March, at which time 
the sun is high and its power great. The result is 
that almost at once this mass of matter begins the 
process of decomposition under the combined influ- 
ence of heat and moisture. This period of the year 
is fruitful of neuralgia, rheumatism, and other 
diseases that are attributed to a malarious cause, 
and this condition lasts until the fresh leaves put 
forth upon the trees and the green grass appears, 
when almost within the space of a week the major 
part of the sickness disappears, and then ensues the 
most healthful portion of the year, the season when 
the vegetation is fresh and its absorbing power 
greatest." 



Although the indigenous diseases were the chief 
dread of the settlers, they were not free from alarms 
of epidemics. On the 17th of May a colored woman 
by the name of Overall was found to have the small- 
pox, and a panic ensued. A public meeting was called 
and a Board of Health formed of all the leading 
physicians of the place, — Drs. Samuel G. Mitchell, 
Isaac Cox, Livingston Dunlap, John H. Sanders, John 
E. McClure, Charles McDougal, John L. Mothershead, 
and William Tichnor. They were authorized to take 
any measures they deemed necessary to arrest the dis- 
ease. Nothing was done, however, as no other case 
made its appearance. In June, 1833, a case or two 
that were supposed to be cholera excited alarm. The 
churches appointed and kept the 26th as a fast-day. 
The fatal prevalence of the epidemic in the southern 
part of the State, especially in Salem, Washington 
Co., renewed the fear here that had been allayed 
by its disappearance, and a public meeting was held 
in the court-house on the 17th of July, a thousand 
dollars contributed by the citizens for sanitary pur- 
poses, a Board of Health appointed, consisting of five 
doctors and five citizens, sanitary committees appointed 
in each ward, medicines obtained, and the Governor's 
house, in the Circle, fixed upon as the hospital, with 
Dr. John E. McClure as superintendent. Better pro- 
vision for a possible calamity was apparently made in 
that emergency fifty years ago than was made after- 
wards, except in the provision of the City Hospital. 
The city has been unusually free from fatal epidemics, 
the smallpox being the only one that has appeared, 
and it has never become epidemic here. 

During all this early period of the history of the 
city and county the primitive habits and conditions 
of the settlement were but little changed, though 
changes were on the way and at work in scattered 
influences both in the family, school, and church, and 
social and business conditions. The universal brother- 
hood of the days when there were no streets, or they 
were full of stumps and mud-holes, with cow-paths 
for sidewalks and worm-fences for borders, was giving 
way to the inevitable separation into classes and 
coteries. " Stores" were dropping one and another 
article or class of the miscellaneous stock they had 
been keeping and approaching the specialties of city 



CURRENCY AND MANUFACTURES. 



95 



establishments. They were leaving sugar and coflFee 
to grocery-stores, abandoning liquor altogether, con- 
fining themselves more exclusively to dry-goods, 
and putting away their red-flannel door-signs as un- 
becoming their maturer years. Barter was passing 
away before the advance of cash, and the supply of 
home necessities trusted less and less to the foresight 
of the head of the fiimily. The winter's supply of 
meat, which for years had been contracted for during 
the fall with one or another farmer and cut up and 
cured at home, was gradually coming more and more 
largely from the butcher as the day's needs required. 



cious but liberal management was a great help to the 
early growth of Indianapolis and the region of which 
it was the centre and depot. When the crash of 
1837 was followed by the " hard times" of 1839 to 
1845, the State Bank's money was all the people 
had that they could trust. The State itself issued 
" scrip" or " treasury notes" receivable for taxes, and 
at first bearing six per cent, interest, but with all 
these advantages the money was discredited. It 
passed with difiiculty at par here, and would not pass 
at all in Cincinnati, or only at a ruinous discount of 
fifty per cent, or more. This was a grievous embar- 




WAGON TBAIN ON NATIONAL ROAD. 



Home-made sugar was giving place to " Orleans," but 
no backwoods boy or man alive or that ever lived 
will substitute " Orleans" molas.ses for " home-made." 
"Store tea" was supplanting "spice-bush" and sassa- 
fras without being better or half as pure. Custom 
shops were sometimes encouraged to manufacture 
a little for stock and the chance of a market. The 
new State Bank, with its branches at the principal 
points of the State, furnished an excellent though 
by no means abundant currency, and by loans to 
enterprising men encouraged such industries as were 
adapted to the condition of the country. Its judi- 



rassment, and largely neutralized the benefit the Legis- 
lature hoped to find in thus " inflating" the currency. 
Some few who were wise in their day made money 
of the situation. They would go to Cincinnati with 
State Bank money or specie and buy State six per 
cent, scrip for fifty or even forty cents on the dollar. 
At home it was good in trade, would buy anything 
or pay any debt, though not always to the pleasure of 
the creditor or seller. Others who could afford it 
hoarded it for the interest and found their account in 
it. One of the Supreme Court, who was one of the 
least expensive men in the world, took his salary in 



96 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



" scrip" and saved it. By the time the State re- 
deemed it the accumulation of interest nearly equaled 
the principal. These financial incidents, though re- 
mote from the first settlement of the city, are still 
more remote from the present time, and will serve to 
illustrate to the present generation a condition of 
things that will never come again. A previous issue 
of treasury notes had been made shortly after the 
State's admission into the Union, and, though re- 
ceivable for taxes, were considerably depreciated, and 
in consequence embarrassed the purchasers of town 
lots seriously. 

During the continuance of the " hard times," 
from 1839 to 1845, interstate emigration did little 
for Indiana or the New Purchase. The " repudiation 
of the State debt," as it was oflen called, — the failure 
to pay interest on the bonds of 1836, — had a bad 
effect on the hunters of new homes, and they passed 
through the State to Illinois and Missouri and Iowa. 
The National road, incomplete as it was, afforded so 
much better a route than others that it was largely 
used by emigrants. Long trains of wagons passed 
every day from sun-up till sun-down, sometimes in 
long procession, sometimes in groups, rarely singly. 
There were four-, three-, and two-horse wagons, cov- 
ered sometimes with canvas, sometimes with bed- 
quilts, with chairs tied about the " end gate," a tar- 
bucket swinging to the coupling pole, a dog hitched 
to the hind axle, tow-headed children stuck about 
among feather-beds and bureaus in front, a sturdy 
man on foot driving, and as sturdy a woman trudg- 
ing by his side with a baby in her arms, and the older 
children following with the cows and sheep. Thus 
came to their new homes many a man who has dis- 
tinguished himself at the bar, in the pulpit, in the 
school, in the doctor's office, in legislation, on the 
bench, on the battle-field. 

" And buirdly ohiels and clever hizzies 
Are bred in sic a way as this is" 

in the backwoods to this day occasionally, but the 
land was full of them at the time referred to. 



CHAPTERV. 

Second Period— The Capital in the Woods. 

The second period of the history of Indianapolis 
is broken by conspicuous events into three divisions 
of nearly equal length, — first, from the removal of 
the capital to the incorporation of the town in 1832 ; 
second, from that event to the abandonment of the 
public works in 1839; third, from that time to 1847, 
when the impulse of improvement ran ahead of the 
opening of the first railroad. The whole period was 
so uneventful, and in the main so unpromising (except 
during the unfortunate real estate inflation that accom- 
panied the " Internal Improvement System"), that it 
can be treated more intelligibly by associating its 
events in logical rather than chronological connection. 

The removal of the State capital to Indianapolis 
produced two beneficial changes. It improved the 
tone of society by a large annual admixture of the 
best intelligence of the State. The meeting of the 
Legislature was for nearly a generation the great 
event of the year. The members came usually on 
horseback, with the now-forgotten "leggings" and 
" saddle-bags." In later days such as were on stage 
lines had the aristocratic privilege of riding. It was . 
not till 1852 that they began to come mainly on rail- 
ways, and to be regarded as of little more consequence 
than other men. The hotels were all " taverns" for 
many a year, and the modes of life as simple and 
primitive as they were in any country town. Farmers 
came in with their families to see the Legislature. 
Visitors from other parts of the State, besides those 
with " axes to grind," came often, and it was long 
before even the townspeople lost their curiosity to see 
its proceedings. There were strong men among the 
legislators of the State in those days. The pay was a 
trifle, and a trifling man could not afford to take such 
a place. It was usually a man who was needed by 
the interests of his locality or a man of conscious 
ability who took a place in one house or the other as 
his first step in the ladder. Elections were rarely 
riotous and never corrupt, though electioneering then 
no more disdained mean arts and artifices than now. 
There was no money to buy votes, the consequence 



THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



97 



was a better class of men, in the average, than do 
the law-making now. Moreover, most, if not all, 
of them were immigrants, with the push and persist- 
ence of men who have enterprise enough to go from 
home to seek fortune, and brains enough to take ad- 
vantage of the chances that oflFer. In a little town 
numbering but a hundred families the preceding 
spring, and probably not more than six hundred 
inhabitants when the first legislative session was held 
here, the advent and free association of such a body 
of men could not but be improving. 

The other benefit following the change of the cap- 
ital was the improvement in the material prospects of 
the village. With no immediate or decided change, 
there was a confidence of prosperity that held up the 
courage of the settlers against the terrors of annual 
chills. The fulfillment of this promise was long in 
coming. It took twenty years to bring the first evi- 
dences of probable prosperity and progress beyond a 
country town. 

The Legislature was always ready to do all that 
might be properly done to help the place, and fre- 
quently stepped in with relief laws for the embarrassed 
purchasers of town lots. At its second session here, 
on the 20th of January, 1826, it came to the relief 
of the ague-shaken debtors who could not pay the 
deferred installments of the purchase-money of their 
lots and extended the time for payment, and allowed 
the cash payments on lots that the holders could not 
keep and wanted to surrender to go upon the lots that 
were kept, thus wiping out in a large measure an 
indebtedness that would finally have proved ruinous. 

The condition of things urging this action is clearly 
set forth in a little article in the Journal of Dec. 15, 
1825, about a month before the bill was passed. 
After remarking that a bill to consolidate payments on 
lots would be introduced in a few days, the Journal — 
it had then borne this name less than a year — said, 
" Many circumstances combined to make lots sell for 
more than they were worth. At the time of the sale 
treasury paper, with which payments were authorized 
to be made, was plenty and at a considerable discount. 
Now payments which were expected to be made in 
depreciated paper, and in consequence of which lots 
sold very high, have to be made in specie or its 
7 



equivalent. Many persons also paid enormous prices 
for lots contiguous to the State-House Square, under 
a belief that a State-House would be speedily erected, 
and that their property would consequently rise in 
value. We hope the Legislature will give this sub- 
ject due attention, and if they do not see the propriety 
of the measure suggested they will probably agree to 
extend the time of making payments." The Legis- 
lature did both. It was wiser than its latter-day suc- 
cessors, and took the suggestions of the press with 
becoming alacrity and deference. There is a consid- 
erable ray of light let in upon the condition of things 
in the first year of the new capital by this little ex- 
position. The donation outside of the town plat was 
partly sold by an act of Jan. 24, 1824, when eighty 
acres were laid off in four-acre blocks, — -the size of the 
city squares, — and sold on the 25th of January, 1825, 
by auction, the highest bringing one hundred and 
fifty-five dollars, the lowest sixty-three dollars. On 
the 12th of February of the first session here, in 1825, 
an act was passed ordering twenty more four-acre out- 
blocks to be laid off north and south of those pre- 
viously sold, — they were on the north and south sides 
of the city, thus making a double tier on those two 
sides, — and sold on the 2d of May. The same act 
ordered the sale of the reserved lots on Washington 
Street, the clearing of Pogue's Run Valley at an 
expense not to exceed fifty dollars, and the lease of 
the ferry at the foot of Washington Street for five 
years. The second series of out-blocks brought four- 
teen hundred and sixty-seven dollars, or about eighteen 
dollars an acre. The Washington Street reserved lots, 
even under the elevating influence of the possession 
of the State capital, did not approach the figures of 
the first sale nearly four years before. The highest 
brought three hundred and sixty dollars, the lowest 
one hundred and thirty-four dollars. An aggregate 
of street frontage equal to three squares brought but 
three thousand three hundred and twenty-eight dol- 
lars. 

The relief act for embarrassed lot-holders had the 
effect of concentrating the settlement in the centre of 
the town plat, along Washington Street, as heretofore 
noted. The court-house and State capitol in one was 
east of a central line, and the taverns and business 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



houses were gathering upon that direction. So the 
lot-holders who wished to surrender any of their pur- 
chases gave up those nearest the river, and applied the 
money paid upon them to lots farther east which they 
wished to keep. This tendency away from the river 
continued till the " internal improvement" impulse 
became so strong as to force the great " improvement 
system" through the Legislature of 1836. Antici- 
pating this a real estate speculation took wing in 1835, 
and from that time till the panic of 1837 got this far 
west the course of development was westward towards 
the line of the canal on Missouri Street, where ware- 
houses were to grow thick and mills wake the echoes 
all night long. When this westward bulge was broken 
by the hard times the town's business settled down 
hopelessly on the two sides of Washington Street from 
Delaware to Illinois, while the residences spread about 
two blocks farther east and west, and only in widely- 
scattered clumps or single houses got as far north as 
North Street or as far south as South Street. In 
February of 1826 a local census showed a population 
of but seven hundred and sixty, with a Sunday-school 
attendance of one hundred and sixty-one, — a very large 
and healthy disproportion. 

For convenience and coherence, all the legislation 
of the State directly affecting the town, during the 
interval from the change of capital to the first incor- 
poration, may be thrown together in this connection. 
The first act was on the 26th of January, 1827, or- 
dering the State's agent to survey and sell seven 
acres on the river for a site for a steam-mill. The 
company that bought it at a mere nominal price was in- 
corporated a year later, on the 28th of January, 1828, 
and was mainly composed of the oldest and most 
prominent citizens, — Nicholas McCarty, James Blake, 
James M. Ray, Daniel Yandes, Noah Noble, William 
Sanders. This steam-mill, which stood till 1853 very 
near the east end of the old National road bridge, 
was the first manufacturing enterprise in the history 
of the place, and on that account may be particularly 
noted here. The Legislature favored it to an extent 
that would be tolerated for no enterprise now. On 
the 6th of January, 1831, the company was given 
the right to extend the time of completing the mill 
another year, and next day were given authority to 



cut any timber they needed on any of the lots held 
by the State. With good transportation facilities 
this grant alone would have been a nice little fortune. 
The mill was a very large frame, three stories high, 
with a two-story attic, so solidly put together by a 
noted workman of the time, James Griswold, that 
after thirty years of neglect, abuse, and total aban- 
donment, it was" as strong when it was burned as it 
was the day it was erected. The western and smaller 
and lower division was a saw-mill, the lower part of 
the main building a grist-mill, and the upper stories 
a wool-carding mill. The machinery was brought 
here from Cincinnati, partly by wagon and partly, 
some say, by the first and only steamer that ever 
came so high up White River. The building was 
finished in December, 1831. The saw-mill, a less 
formidable structure, was finished and at work the 
fall before. The grist-mill began. operations in Jan- 
uary, 1832, for the first time since the settlement of 
the " New Purchase," giving its customers bolted 
flour. Previously flour, like corn-meal, had to be 
sifted at home. For over two years the establish- 
ment was maintained in an inefi'gctive way, fre- 
quently idle and never remunerative, and was finally 
abandoned in 1835 and the machinery offered for 
sale. For a number of years, however, portions of 
the saw-mill works were left for idle boys to abuse or 
break up and sell for old iron, and the building was 
made the haunt of thieves and strumpets, except 
during the occupancy of the Messrs. Geisendorfi' with 
their woolen-factory, from 1847 to 1852. The enter- 
prise was too big for the place. It could supply a 
home demand treble that to which it could look for 
business, and beyond that it could do nothing. 
The cost of getting flour to the Ohio River or any 
shipping market would have been as much as the cost 
of the flour itself It is among the traditions of this 
first enterprise and failure that it took a hundred 
men two days to raise the frame- work, and that they 
used no liquor in the labor. The singularity of this 
abstinence no doubt gave life to the legend. Liquor 
at a " house-raising" or " log-rolling" or " corn-shuck- 
ing" or any of the co-operative labors or neighborhood 
frolics was as indispensable as food or Rouse's or 
I Bagwell's fiddle, though, as previously noted, mis- 




^ffl^i^^^L^r^i 



THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



99 



chievous excesses were far less frequent than now. 
Three of the men conspicuously connected with this 
enterprise were quite as conspicuously connected 
with the whole history of the earliest development 
of the city's industrial and commercial interests. 
These were Nicholas McCarty, Daniel Yandes, and 
James Blake. Others, like Calvin Fletcher, Morris 
Morris, Hervey Bates, and James M. Ray, were as 
closely identified with the general progress of the 
city, but less so with the special interests indicated. 
Mr. McCarty and Mr. Yandes were the chief capital- 
ists, so far as can now be learned. The former .stands 
as the representative of the commercial as the latter 
and Mr. Blake of the manufacturing development of 
the city. Though Mr. McCarty was behind neither 
of his compeers of their own special direction, he is 
best known as the leading merchant of Central 
Indiana. 

Nicholas McCarty was born on the 26th of 
September, 1795, in the town of Moorefield, Harding 
Co., W. Va., among the Alleghanies. His father 
dying when he was very young, his mother removed 
to Pittsburgh, Pa., where he remained until he 
was well advanced toward manhood, with little 
opportunity for early school education. While still 
under twenty he left Pittsburgh for Newark, Ohio, 
where as a boy he won the favor of BIr. Bucking- 
ham, then one of the leading merchants of Ohio, by 
the sterling qualities that in later years won him the 
respect of every honorable man to whom he was 
known. He speedily made himself master of the 
mercantile business, so far as it was developed within 
his range, and Mr. Buckingham made him superin- 
tendent of one of his branch houses near Newark. 
His success was as speedy and conspicuous here as in 
a lower position, and in a few years he had acquired 
both the experience and the means to begin business 
for himself. His trade was large and prosperous 
from the beginning. Here his career gives the key- 
note of his character, — a sensitiveness of honor that 
feels a reproach like a stab, a strength of gratitude 
that counts no sacrifice a loss in returning the good- 
will he has received. Finding that his business was 
growing at the expense of his benefactor's, when he 
had counted confidently on a sufficiency for both, he 



sold out and came from Newark to Indianapolis in the 
fall of 1823, at twenty-eight years of age. 

He established himself in a building on the south- 
west corner of Washington and Pennsylvania Streets, 
known for thirty years as " McCarty's Corner," and 
south of this building some years later built an im- 
posing brick residence, the home of the family for 
many years. He was the first merchant educated to 
business who conducted it systematically. He began 
in a larger way, too, than others, and his success was 
proportional. He established branch stores in Laporte, 
Greenfield, Covington, Cumberland, and Waverly, and 
trained several young men afterwards conspicuous in 
the business of the city or State, imbuing them all 
with his own scrupulous and resolute integrity. It 
was reserved for the great crisis of his hfe to exhibit 
his best qualities at their best. When the panic of 
1837 and the subsequent hard times had made his 
great resources, largely in real estate, unavailable, he 
became involved, and made a settlement with his 
creditors upon such terms as to enable them to 
realize more than the principal and interest of his 
obligations. 

James Blake had come to Indianapolis in 1821, 
under the advice of some Philadelphia friends, with 
an eye to the preparation of ginseng — a profuse 
growth of the woods all about the settlement at that 
time — for shipment from Philadelphia to China, 
where it sells at high figures, and its use is universal 
now, as it was then. He established a drying and 
purifying apparatus in a little house south of the 
creek, on the present East Delaware Street, and Mr. 
McCarty here, and by his agents at his branch stores 
and elsewhere, collected the roots from farmers and 
their families, who frequently helped out a short corn 
crop with what they called " sang." A little hoe 
was made especially for this use called a " sang-hoe," 
obsolete for forty-five years or more. The extent of 
his business in a little place of less than two thousand 
people may be judged by the fact that the freezing of 
the Ohio in 1829 compelled him to haul in wagons 
his entire season's stock from Philadelphia, requiring 
sixteen six-horse Conestoga wagons to do it. The 
freight of ginseng back made the audacious enterprise 
profitable, — an illustration of his business perception 



100 



HISTOKY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



and prompt decision, for the cold snap froze the Ohio 
just as his goods reached Pittsburgh to take steam 
passage to Madison. Besides his ordinary mercantile 
business, he took large contracts for Indian supplies, 
and made himself quite familiar with the dialects of 
two or three of the tribes on the " Miami Reserva- 
tion." 

His enterprise appeared repeatedly in attempts to 
introduce new industries or develop new resources. 
He was largely interested in the eflFort to establish 
silk-growing about 1835, and went with character- 
istic energy into the planting of the Morus mvlti- 
eaulis. A few years later (about 18-40) he began 
one of the most important enterprises of his life, 
though the distress of the country was too great and 
general to permit it the success it would probably 
have achieved a half-dozen years later. This was 
the cultivation and manufacture of hemp on his 
" bayou farm," now " West Indianapolis," where are 
located the "stock-yards," "car-works," and other 
improvements. The fibre was rotted, broken, and 
cleaned in vats and mills on the bluflF bank of the 
creek just below the present line of Ray Street at 
Church, Carloss, and Wilkins Streets. Proving un- 
profitable, the enterprise was abandoned in two or 
three years. 

Mr. McCarty's personal popularity was so great 
that the Whigs, who had been placed under the 
cloud of "hard times" from 1843 onward, thought 
it possible to save a seat in Congress by him, and ran 
him against Judge Wick in 1847. It was his first 
experience as a politician, but his native shrewdness 
served him better than many an older politician's 
more devious ways. He made no pretence of oratory, 
and for that reason made a stronger impression by his 
solid sense and effective humor than his opponent, 
who was really an unusually good speaker when he 
chose to be. But the Whigs were not strong enough 
to win even with a man stronger than the party. A 
few years later he ran for the State Senate in the 
county and was elected, serving three years, the last 
three under the old Constitution. In 1852, much 
against his inclination, he was unanimously nomi- 
nated by the dying Whig party for the first guber- 
natorial term under the new Constitution. He made 



an admirable canvass against Governor Joseph A. 
Wright, one of the best " stumpers" in the United 
States, and by familiarity with public speaking had 
become a ready, perspicuous, and forcible speaker. 
The Democrats, however, being greatly in the ma- 
jority, he was defeated. 

He was married in Boone County, Ky., July 
27, 1828, to Margaret, daughter of Rev. Jameson 
Hawkins, one of the earliest of the Baptist preachers 
of the county, and died May 17, 1854, in his fifty- 
ninth year. Three children survive him, — Margaret, 
(Mrs. John C. S. Harrison), Nicholas, and Francis J. 
Susannah, the eldest daughter, and wife of Rev. 
Henry Day, many years pastor of the First Baptist 
Church, died sevel-al years ago. Mr. McCarty was 
an example of Christian purity, integrity, and char- 
ity during his whole life. He was generous " as the 
day," tolerant of offenses that affected only himself, 
peaceable, frank, and honorable. No man that ever 
lived in the city was more sincerely or generally 
loved and honored, and certainly none ever deserved 
it better. He was always prompt in his aid of be- 
nevolent efforts, and one of the most active in urging 
the organization of the Orphans' Home. A meeting 
of the citizens held on the occasion of his death 
adopted the following resolution, prepared by a com- 
mittee consisting of James M. Ray, Robert Hahna, 
Bethuel F. Morris, Calvin Fletcher, John D. De- 
frees, John M. Talbott, and Nathan B. Palmer : 

. " Regnlced, That in the departure of our fellow-citizen, Nich- 
olas McCarty, Esq., we realize the loss of one who, since the 
early days of the city, has deservedly ranked as a most worthy, 
generous, and valuable man, and who, by his aflfectioniite 
heart, clearness of mind, and strict integrity of purpose, had 
warmly endeared himself to all who knew him. In the im- 
j portant public trusts committed to him — as commissioner of 
the canal fund in effecting the first loan of the State, as sena- 
tor of this county, and in other engagements — he manifested 
remarkable judiciousness and ability. It was with reluctance 
he was drawn into the pursuit of official station, and with de- 
cided preference enjoyed the happiness of an attached circle 
of family and friends. His hand and heart were ever at com- 
mand for the need of the atHicted, and his counsels and sym- 
pathies were extended where they could be useful with unaf- 
fected simplicity and modesty." 

Daniel Yandes belonged to that class of men who 
naturally become pioneers. He was born in Fayette 




,c^< 



-U) 



THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



101 



County, Pa., in January, 1793, when it was yet a new 
country, with fertile soil, a hilly but beautiful surface, 
and underlaid with coal. He was the son of Simon 
Yandes, whose wife before marriage was Anna Cath- 
arine Rider, both natives of Germany. His parents 
lived upon a farm near the Monongahela River west 
of Uniontown. They had two sons, Daniel and 
Simon, who received only the limited education usual 
at that time. Both of the sons worked on the farm. 
They enlisted in the year 1813 under Gen. Harrison, 
in the last war with Great Britain, and served six 
months in Northern Ohio, but were not engaged in 
battle. The father of Governor Albert G. Porter en- 
listed in the same company. In 1814, when Wash- 
ington City was first threatened by the British, they 
again enlisted, and Daniel Yandes at the age of twenty- 
one was elected major of the regiment. Before leaving 
the place of rendezvous the order to march was coun- 
termanded, and the troops were not again ordered 
out. In 1815 occurred the most fortunate event of 
his life, and that was his marriage to Anna Wilson, 
the oldest daughter of James Wilson and his wife, 
Mary Rabb. James Wilson was a leading farmer 
and magistrate of the county. The Wilsons were 
Scotch-Irish Presbyterians, and the Rabbs Scotch- 
English Presbyterians, and Anna Wilson was a 
Presbyterian. Her educational advantages were but 
moderate as compared with those at present. James 
Wilson's father, Alexander Wilson, was born in 1727, 
and removed from Lancaster County, Pa., to Fayette 
County, where he died in 1815. 

After the marriage of Daniel Yandes, he acquired 
a mill and opened a coal-mine. In 1817 his father 
died, at the age of eighty-four, and in 1818, when the 
advantages of the fertile soil of Indiana were heralded 
in Western Pennsylvania and enthusiasm aroused, he, 
with his wife, mother, and two children, floated down 
the Ohio to Cincinnati, and went from thence to 
Fayette County, Ind., where he opened a farm in the 
woods near Connersville. In the spring of 1821 he 
removed to Indianapolis, which had been fixed upon 
as the seat of government for the State, and resided 
there until his death in June, 1878, at the age of 
eiii;hty-five years and five months. His portrait and 
signature represent him at the age of eighty. His 



first residence was a log cabin which he built near the 
northeast corner of Washington and Illinois Streets. 
In 1822 he erected and resided in a double log cabin 
near the southwest corner of Washington and Ala- 
bama Streets, opposite the Court-House Square. In 
1823 he built a new frame residence of three rooms 
in that locality. About 1831 he erected a two-story 
brick residence where the Citizens' National Bank 
now stands, and part of the same building included a 
store-room where Harrison's Bank now is. In 1837 
he was the owner of an acre of ground where the 
First Presbyterian Church now stands, and where he 
built a large plain two-story brick residence. Here 
he lived until it was sold to the above church in 1863, 
and here his wife died in 1851. After her death he 
did not marry again. 

He came to Indianapolis with about four thousand 
dollars, and, strange as it may seem, that constituted 
him the largest capitalist of the incipient metropolis 
for the next ten years. That amount included the 
total of his inheritance and of his own acquisitions 
up to 1821. He was, in common with pioneers gen- 
erally, a man of rugged health, and hopeful, confiding, 
and enterprising. He was fond of building mills, 
manufactories, and introducing other improvements. 
On his arrival in Indianapolis, with his brother-in-law 
he erected the saw- and grist-mill on the bayou south- 
west of the city where the McCarty land now is, the 
dam being built across White River at the head of 
the island which was opposite the Old Cemetery. This 
is said to have been the first mill in the New Purchase. 

About 1823 the firm of Yandes & Wilkens estab- 
lished the first tannery in the county, and continued 
in that business together about thirty years. The 
active partner was John Wilkens, a man well known 
for his uncommon merits. Afterwards Daniel Yan- 
des continued the same business with his nephew, 
Lafayette Yandes. After the death of Lafayette he 
formed another partnership with his nephew, Daniel 
Yandes, Jr., and James C. Parmerlee in au extensive 
tannery in Brown County, and in a leather-store at 
Indianapolis. About the year 1825, Mr. Yandes be- 
came the partner in a store with Franklin Merrill, 
brother of Samuel Merrill. Stores in the early history 
of Indianapolis contained a miscellaneous assortment. 



102 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



more or less extensive, including dry-goods, groceries, 
queensware, hardware, hats, shoes, etc. About 1831 
he became the partner of Edward T. Porter, and the 
store of Yandes & Porter was in a brick building 
which preceded that where Harrison's Bank now 
stands. At nearly the same time he started Joseph 
Sloan in business as a merchant at Covington, 
Ind., and continued his partner for several years. 
In 1833 he and Samuel Merrill, treasurer of State, 
dug a race along Fall Creek, and built a grist-mill, 
a saw-mill, and the first cotton-spinning factory in 
this region. A few years afterwards he and William 
Sheets, then late Secretary of State, built on the canal 
west of the State-House grounds the first paper-mill 
in the county. About the same time he became the 
partner of Thomas M. Smith in a store, and about 
1838 was the partner of John F. Hill in another 
store, both of which were on the north side of Wash- 
ington Street, a little west of Pennsylvania Street. 
In 1839, under great difficulties, he alone built at La- 
fayette, Ind., a grist-mill, saw-mill, and paper-mill, 
and opened with his son James a large store. While 
engaged in this enterprise the panic was precipitated 
upon the country, and Mr. Yandes found himself in- 
volved heavily in debt, both as principal and indorser, 
at Indianapolis and Lafayette. While he enjoyed the 
good-will of his creditors, he did not command their 
entire confidence as to his solvency, and during the 
years 1839 to 1841 judgments in Marion County 
accumulated against him to the amount of over twenty- 
two thousand dollars, when he sacrificed some of his 
most valuable property at much less than cost. At 
the same time he was under protest at the bank at 
Lafayette. In due time, however, he paid the full 
amount of his debts, and it is a matter of honest 
pride that he and his children have always paid in 
full individual and all other indebtedness. About the 
year 1817 he and Thomas H. Sharpe built the Col- 
lege Hall, a brick building, which preceded the Fletcher 
& Sharpe bank and store property, at the corner of 
Washington and Pennsylvania Streets ; and a few 
years afterwards he erected the brick building where 
Ritzinger's Bank now is. In 1847 he built ten miles 
of the Madison Railroad, which was completed about 
September of that year, and was the first railroad to 



Indianapolis. The same year he joined in building 
a grist-mill at Franklin. In 1852 he and Alfred 
Harrison built thirty miles of the eastern end \a 
Indiana of the Bellefontaine Railroad. Previous to 
this time he had twice ventured successfully in send- 
ing large cargoes of provisions by flat-boats from In- 
diana to New Orleans. About the year 1854, during 
the Kansas excitement, his desire for the freedom of 
that State impelled him to aid some young men to 
settle there, whom he accompanied to the West. 
About 1860 he joined Edward T. Sinker as partner 
in the Western Machine- Works, where he continued 
for some years. 

One of his most curious traits was the manifestation 
of unusual energy and labor for a series of years until 
an enterprise could be put upon a solid basis, after 
which he evinced unusual indolence and inattention 
to details for several years until he became again en- 
listed in a new enterprise. As a consequence, after 
new enterprises were fairly started and tested he lost 
interest in them, and in a few years would usually sell 
his interest. ■ He was senior partner, and in most cases 
the capitalist. Although he matured his plans pa- 
tiently and carefully, he was nevertheless a little too 
fond of hazard. 

If his business career had terminated when seventy- 
five years of age he would have been a successful 
business man ; but an undue fondness for enterprise, 
and a hopeftil enthusiasm, together with the fascina- 
tions of the far West, an over-confidence in others, and 
the deterioration incident to old age, with his unwil- 
lingness to be advised, resulted in disaster. He lost 
a considerable amount in mines in the West, and a 
large sum in the Brazil Furnace, stripping him in 
effect of his property when he was past the age of 
eighty. One of these mines is now more promising. 

In politics he was a very decided Whig and Re- 
publican, but cared little for the distinctions of office. 
He was, however, the first treasurer of Marion County, 
and in 1838 Governor Noble, unsolicited, appointed 
him one of the Board of Internal Improvements to 
aid in carrying out the extensive system of improve- 
ments provided for by the Legislature in 1836. 

In church matters he was a Lutheran by preference, 
but there being no church of that denomination at 



THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



103 



ludianapolis in early times, he became a Presbyterian, 
and was for somre years one of the first elders and 
trustees of the Second Presbyterian Church. From 
1823 to 1845, and until the failure of his wife's health, 
his house was one of the favorite stopping-places of 
the Presbyterian clergy. Rev. Mr. Proctor, and after- 
wards Rev. George Bush, were his guests for months. 
He was liberal to chanties and the church, having 
given away up to 1865 about sixty thousand dollars. 
It would require at least double that amount, according 
to the present value of money, to be an equivalent. 

Five of his children died young. His daughter, 
Mary Y. Wheeler, died in 1852, leaving five children, 
three of whom yet survive. His children yet living 
are Catharine, the widow of Rev. Elijah T. Fletcher ; 
Elizabeth Y. Robinson; Simon, formerly a lawyer; 
James W., formerly a merchant; and George B., now 
president of the Citizens' National Bank. 

Besides the favor extended by the Legislature to 
the enterprising spirit of the town in the cheap sale 
of the steam-mill site, a direct appropriation of four 
thousand dollars was made to build an official resi- 
dence for the Governor in the Circle. This was done 
on the 26th of January, 1827. A contract for the 
work, at a cost of six thousand five hundred dollars, 
was made on the 17th of March, with Austin Bishop, 
Robert Culbertson, William Smith, and William 
Speaks, by Samuel Merrill and Benjamin I. Blythe, 
on the part of the State. It was of brick, about 
fifty feet square, two stories high, with a sort of Man- 
sard roof, containing a level space in the centre about 
fifteen feet square, surrounded by a railing, standing 
upon a basement some six feet above the ground, 
with a large hall-door in the middle of each of the 
four sides, and separated by ten-feet halls crossing 
each other in the middle into four large rooms in 
each corner. Its complete exposure on all sides 
made it an undesirable residence for a family, and it 
was never occupied except for public offices, chambers 
of the Supreme Court judges, and in its later days 
for almost any use that respectable applicants desired 
it for. As heretofore related, it was sold for old 
brick and torn down in 1857. School-boys used to 
make a " circus" of its basement-rooms, and one day, 
some forty years ago, a wild turkey, scared by hunters 



from the noted " turkey-roost" in the sugar grove 
near the line of Seventh and Illinois Streets, ran into 
one of these basement-rooms, and was caught there 
by a school-boy of the period. Another house, built 
at the same time, was the little brick at the east gate 
of the Court-House Square, for an office for the clerk 
of the State Supreme Court. At the preceding ses- 
sion the Legislature had ordered the State agent to 
contract with Asahel Dunning for a two-story brick 
ferry-house near the foot of Washington Street, on the 
south side. It was built in 1827, partially burned in 
1855, repaired, and reoccupied until some half dozen 
or so years ago, when it was torn down. 

In this connection belong.s the act ordering the first 
State-House, which passed 10th of February, 1831, 
upon the recommendation of a committee at the ses- 
sion of 1829-30. The report estimated the cost at 
fifty-six thousand dollars, and stated that the unsold 
land in the donation would be fairly estimated at fifty- 
eight thousand dollars. James Blake was appointed 
commissioner to attend to the work and obtain mate- 
rial (three hundred and sixty perches of stone by the 
second Monday of May was specified), with an appro- 
priation of three thousand dollars. He was instructed 
to ofier one hundred and fifty dollars for a plan, embrac- 
ing halls for the two houses, rooms for Supreme Court 
and State Library, and twelve rooms for committees, 
with such others as would be needed, and report to the 
next Legislature. The cost was limited to forty-five 
thousand dollars. The commissioner procured a plan 
from Ithiel Town, a distinguished architect of New 
York, and I. J. Davis. The Legislature approved 
Jan. 20, 1832, and appointed Noah Noble (Gov- 
ernor), Morris Morris (auditor), and Samuel Merrill 
(treasurer), Feb. 2, 1832, as commissioners to 
superintend the work, employ architects, andnise the 
material purchased by Mr. Blake. The work was to 
be finished by November, 1838, and to be examined 
and approved by a committee of five from each house 
before acceptance. The contract was made with Mr. 
Town at fifty-eight thousand dollars. Work began in 
the spring of 1832. The site, previously a dead level, 
was plowed and scraped into an elevation in the centre 
under the survey and supervision of Gen. Thomas A. 
Morris, then a young West Pointer, after serving a 



104 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



faithful term at the printer's " case." The building 
was so far completed as to be ready for oecupaqpy 
when the Legislature met on the 7th of December, 
1835. The actual cost was sixty thousand dollars, 
but two thousand dollars in excess of the estimate. 
It was two hundred feet long by one hundred feet 
wide, and two stories high. The style was the Doric 
of the Parthenon, spoiled by a contemptible little 
dome that was about as suitable in that place as an 
army-cap on the Apollo Belvidere. The basement 
was of blue slate from the Bluffs, and soon began de- 
caying. The whole exterior was stuccoed, and looked 
well till frost and thaw, damp and heat began to 
make it peel off, and then it looked worse than a 
beggar's rags. It was so dilapidated as to be unsafe 
before it was torn down in 1878. The trees planted 
in the square made a fine grove there, which was the 
favorite resort of Sunday-school celebrations of the 
Fourth of July and the usual out-door place for 
political meetings. 

At the same time the order was made to sell the 
steam-mill site all the reserved, forfeited, and unsold 
lots in the town were ordered to be sold. It was 
done on the 7th and 8th of the following May, when 
one hundred and fifty-three lots, of which twenty-four 
were on Washington Street, were offered, with over 
thirty squares of four acres each. Sales were made 
of one hundred and six lots at one hundred and 
eighty dollars an acre, and thirty-eight out-lots and 
squares at twenty-three dollars an acre. On the 22d 
of January, 1829, an act extended the time of pay- 
ment of the deferred installments of the purchase- 
money of out-lots, and declared inoperative the for- 
feitures worked under the existing law by delinquent 
payments. The next legislative order touching the 
town arid the State's property was made on the 9th 
of February, 1831, when the agent was directed to 
plat the whole donation outside the town into out-lots 
and sell them at public auction. The subdivision 
was made, and the aggregate of lots offered in and 
out of the town plat was nearly nineteen hundred 
acres. The divisions ranged from two to fifty acres. 
The minimum price was ten dollars an acre, but only 
a portion was sold. It may be noticed here that the 
order for the clearing of Pogue's Run Valley was 



never executed, probably because the fifty-dollar limit 
was too little. Property-holders, however, gradually 
cleared it, and improved the health of the place by 
it. The low, swampy " bottom" and dense woods and 
underbrush made the very home of malarious disor- 
ders, and they trooped out in force during the sickly 
season. There is nothing but two or three shivered 
stumps left of this dense woods now, except for a short 
distance above the mouth of the creek and near the 
Morris Street bridge. Here some old sycamores and 
elms still remain, but one of them was blown over by 
the tornado that did such damage to some of the 
manufacturing establishments on the West Side last 
summer. All the papaws, black haws, apple haws, 
ginseng, prickly ash, spice-brush, and hazel-bushes 
are gone as completely as if such things had never 
grown there, yet it was a valley prolific of wild fruit, 
as its clear stream was of good fish. 

At the time the order of Jan. 26, 1827, was made 
for the sale of forfeited and reserved lots certain 
squares and alleys were vacated. Square 22 was re- 
served for a State hospital, and square 25 for a State 
university ; it is now University Park. The " State 
University" at Bloomington has tried to get possession 
of this valuable property under cover of a title it has 
assumed since that dedication was made, but has failed. 
On the 26th of January, 1832. the agent was em- 
powered to lease the square to the trustees of Marion 
County Seminary for thirty years, with the proviso 
that if it should be needed for a university in that 
time a half acre should be sold in fee-simple in either 
the southwest or southeast corner, where a seminary 
building was authorized to be erected under the lease. 
The trustees built the " Old Seminary" in the south- 
west corner in 1833-34, the most noted local school 
of the State, and maintained with unvarying success 
and wide benefit for twenty years. It will be noticed 
more fully in the department of this work assigned 
to " Schools." In October, 1827, Miss Matilda 
Sharpe, the first milliner, came to Indianapolis, — 
not the least important event of the year. 

While the Legislature, as above related, was dis- 
posing of unsold lots, erecting buildings, and forward- 
ing the improvement of the place, the citizens were 
not inactive in their own moral and social interests. 



THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



105 



though it was late before their enterprise turned to 
points of business advantage, and with no great good 
fortune to encourage them when they did turn. In 
April, 1825, the Indianapolis Bible Society was 
formed, and is still living in the Indianapolis Female 
Bible Society, a most active and beneficent agency 
among the soldiers during the civil war. Mrs. Mar- 
garet Givan was the first president, and the wife of 
Professor George Bush, pastor of the First Presbyte- 
rian Church, and since then known all over the literary 
world for' eminence in oriental scholarship, was one of 
its most active promoters. On the 13th of November, 
1825, the Marion County Bible Society was formed, 
with Bethuel F. Morris as president and James M. 
Ray as secretary. It may be noted here that Mr. 
Ray was secretary of pretty much every organiza- 
tion ever formed during the first thirty years of the 
city's existence. Whether town-meeting or bank 
directory, fire company or missionary society, James 
M. Ray was invariably made its business manager or 
secretary. It is to his undying honor that he always 
served and was never paid. He was born in the first 
year of this century, in New Jersey, and learned the 
trade of making coach lace, came West to Kentucky 
when a young lad, and worked there with his family ; 
came later to Lawrenceburg, in this State, and came 
here in the summer or fall of 1821. His intelligence, 
activity, and integrity put him at once among the fore- 
most men of the settlement. Quiet, unobtrusive, vigi- 
lant, never idle, never careless, his word was as good 
as any other man's oath, and his aid in any good work 
as confidently expected as the continuance of his ex- 
istence. It would be impossible to gather up here all 
the associations of which he was secretary at one 
time or another in more than fifty years of active life 
in the settlement and city, but it is really no exagger- 
ation to say that the first generation of settlers trusted 
him with every work of that kind that they had to 
do. He was the first county clerk, as already noted, 
and served till he was made cashier of the old State 
Bank in 1834. He continued in that position as long 
as the bank lived, and then went into its successor, 
the " Bank of the State." He was Governor Mor- 
ton's most trusted agent during the war, and managed 
all the external finances of the State during that 



momentous period. Financial disaster overtook him 
in some unfortunate mining operations to which he 
had given his means largely, and several years of his 
later life were passed in an easy but well-paid position 
in the Treasury Department at Washington. During 
the last year or so he returned to his old home, and 
died here Feb. 22, 1881. 

The Indianapolis Tract Society was another kindred 
organization made during the same year, 1825 ; and 
on September 3d the first agricultural society was 
formed by the late Calvin Fletcher, Henry Bradley, 
Henry Brenton, and others. The following year .an 
artillery company was formed under Capt. James 
Blake, upon the reception of a .six-pounder iron gun 
sent here by the government. It blew off William 
Warren's hand while firing a salute to the " Bloody 
Three Hundred" in 1832, when mustering to march 
away to the Black Hawk war. It afterwards blew off 
one of Andrew Smith's hands. Mr. Smith is still 
living in the county, a hale and venerable gentleman, 
far beyond the scriptural limit of life, after many years 
of service in important county offices. On the 20th 
of June, 1826, the first fire company was formed, 
with John Hawkins as president and James M. Ray 
as secretary. Its implements were buckets and lad- 
ders, and its alarm general yelling and the ringing of 
church and tavern bells. It was incorporated in 1830, 
and continued in existence till the formation of the 
" Marion Fire-Engine Company" in 1835, when the 
old company was absorbed into the new one. In 
July, 1828, the Indianapolis Library Society was 
formed, the library being made up of donations. It 
lasted half a dozen years or so. A musical association 
called the Handelian Society was formed in the 
spring of 1828. In August a cavalry company was 
formed by Capt. David Buchanan. On the 24th of 
April, 1829, the Methodist Sunday-school was colo- 
nized from the Union School on the completion of the 
old church on the southwest corner of Circle and 
Meridian Streets. It began with eleven teachers and 
forty-six scholars, and in a year had twenty-seven 
teachers and one hundred and forty-six scholars. In 
November, 1829, the Colonization Society was organ- 
ized, with Judge Isaac Blackford as president. On 
the 11th of December, 1830, the Indiana Historical 



106 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



Society was formed, with Benjaniin Parke as presi- 
dent and Bethuel P. Morris as secretary. John H. I 
Farnham was afterwards secretary, and the books and ' 
papers were long kept in the office of Henry P. Co- ' 
burn, clerk of the Supreme Court. The library was 
given to the Union Library Society about 1846, and 
when that association went to pieces the library went 
to pieces too. The Historical Association numbered 
among its members some of the most distinguished 
men in the State, and among its " honorary members" 
were Henry Clay, Daniel Webster, Lewis Cass, John i 
C. Calhoun, and other men of national renown. It i 
has been revived within a few years by some of the 
leading citizens of the State, who arc interested in 
historical affairs, and promises to be a useful as well 
as durable organization. In the fall of 1831 the In- ' 
dianapolis '■ Lyceum" or " Athenisum" was organized 
to promote literary culture by lectures and scientific , 
discussions. It lasted usefully for a few years, and 
was succeeded by the Young Men's Literary Society 
in 1§35. This organization was superseded by the I 
Union Literary Society, composed mainly of the 
elder pupils of the " Old Seminary," which collected 
a considerable library, was iucorporated in 1846 or 
1847, and began the lecture system hereby procuring 
lectures from Mr. Beecher, Rev. Mr. Johnson, Mr. 
Fisher, of Cincinnati, and others. It was disbanded [ 
by gradual decay, but in 1853 its last effort obtained ' 
a lecture by Horace Greeley on Henry Clay. i 

In 1831, near the end of the first division of the 
city's second period or stage of growth, came the first 
illusive promise of public improvements, which soon ; 
grew strong enough to realize itself partially, and to j 
send a forecast nearly twoscore years ahead of the } 
fact that only began to be forcefully felt in 1850 or 
just before. The Legislature on the 2d and 3d of ! 
February chartered a group of railroads that reads in j 
its titles very much like a time-table in the Union , 
Depot today. There was the Madison and Indianap- I 
olis, the Lawrenceburg and Indianapolis, the New , 
Albany, Salem and Indianapolis, the Ohio and In- 
dianapolis. Surveys were made on all them, and j 
some grading done in patches, but nothing came of 
any of them except the Madison and Indianapolis, 
which was incorporated in the State's great and disas- \ 



trous " Internal Improvement System" of 1836. This 
reference is all that need be made here, as the history 
of the city's railroad system will appear fully in its 
proper place. 

Almost contemporaneously with the charters of 
these railroads came the only steamer that ever reached 
Indianapolis. It was on the 11th of April, 1831. 
The steamer was the " Robert Hanna," owned by 
Gen. Robert Hanna, one of tlie prominent citizens, 
and some of his associates, who intended to use it in 
the transportation of stone and timber for the work on 
the National road, a contract for which they held. The 
arrival created a great excitement. Between a steamer 
actually at the wharf, as it were, and the recent charter 
of four or five railroads the victims of chills and 
many disappointments began to take heart and hope 
that their dreams, when the capital came, might be 
prophecies after all. The cannon was fired, crowds 
visited the vessel, a public meeting was held on the 
12th, with Judge Blackford, president, and Judge 
Morrison, secretary, to make a formal welcome, and 
a banquet for the officers and owners. Resolutions 
demanded the improvement of the river, and the 
speeches expressed the usual invariable confidence of 
" the realization of our most sanguine expectations." 
That was the end of it. After making a couple of 
little excursions up the river on the 12th, she started 
back down the river on the 13th. It was a slow 
voyage. The pilot-house and chimneys got in the 
way of the tree limbs, the bends were too short for 
her length, the bars too frequent and shallow. She 
knocked off her pilot-house and damaged her wheel- 
house in one of her excursions, and scared her un- 
familiar passengers so badly that a good many jumped 
off into the water. With such ill omens and a slow 
voyage down, probably nobody was surprised to hear 
that she had grounded at Hog Island, where the 
captain's child was drowned, and never got off till 
the fall rise came. Hopes of river navigation never 
flourished after this experiment. It was a very gen- 
eral belief that the river would be made practically 
navigable as Congress had formally declared it to be, 
and to this impression must be attributed the early 
preference of settlers for locations near the river. On 
the 12th of February, 1825, Alexander Ralston, who 



THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



107 



had laid out the town, was appointed by the legisla- 
tive commissioners to make a survey of the river and 
estimate the cost of clearing out the obstructions 
and the extent of practicable navigability. 

During the summer he made the survey, and re- 
ported that an annual outlay of fifteen hundred dol- 
lars would make the stream navigable for three months 
in each year. From Sample's Mills, in Randolph 
County, to Indianapolis was one hundred and thirty 
miles, from here to the junction with White River 
proper two hundred and eighty-five miles, and from 
there to the Wabash forty miles, with a fall of eighteen 
inches eight miles above Martinsville, and another of 
nine feet in three hundred and ten miles above the 
junction, with a great drift at the line of Daviess and 
Greene Counties. On the basis of this report Congress 
was several times petitioned by the Legislature to 
make an appropriation for the proposed improvement, 
but nothing was ever done. The State made some 
considerable appropriations, expended by the County 
Board along the river, but no improvement of any 
real value could be made by such disjointed labors and 
slender means, if indeed anything could be done by 
any possible expenditure short of a system of " slack- 
water" dams and locks. Schemes for this sort of 
improvement were urged upon the Legislature by 
John Matthews and others for several years after 
18.30, and renewed again in 1851, when the "White 
River Navigation Company" was chartered for twenty 
years. That was all that was ever done. In 1865 a 
little picnic steamer called the " Governor Morton" 
was built by some of the citizens, and made some 
short excursions during the year following, but she 
never amounted to anything. She sank below the 
old bridge after a life of a year, and her machinery 
was taken out and put into some sort of a mill. This 
is all of the history of the navigation of White River, 
except that the steamer " Traveler" came up as far 
as Spencer in 1830, and the " Victory" came up 
within fifty-five miles of this place the same year. 
Of the use of the river for commercial purposes more 
will be said under the head of " Transportation." 

The first stage line into the town was started by 
Mr. Johnson, a relative of Col. Richard M. Johnson, 
to Madison in the summer of 1828. Mr. Johnson 



about the same time established a coach-making or 
repairing shop on the block where the post-oflBce and 
the Odd-Pellows' Hall stand. On the 8th of July, 
1827, the National road commissioner, Mr. Knight, 
was in the town, and fixed the lino to this point. 
The next year, in September and October, the con- 
tracts for the work were let, greatly to the satisfac- 
tion of the town, which had been so long locked up by 
cow-paths, Indian trails, and swampy roads cross- 
layed. The old bridge across the river was built by 
William Wernweg and Walter Blake for eighteen 
thousand dollars, on plans furnished by the late Laza- 
rus B. Wilson. It was completed in 1834, the con- 
tract being let July 26, 1831. The macadamizing of 
the road was completed nearly through the town and 
about three miles west, just beyond Eagle Creek, and 
abandoned in 1839 in consequence of the failure of 
Congress to continue the appropriations. The road 
following Washington Street enabled that thorough- 
fare to get the first improvement that any street ever 
got in the place, but no sidewalk work was done for 
several years. After remaining in this incomplete 
condition for a number of years Congress finally sur- 
rendered to each State the portion of the National 
road in its limits, and about the time the railroads 
began advancing pretty rapidly the State gave the 
road to a " Plank-Road Company," which covered it 
with narrow, heavy oak plank, and made an admirable 
road till the plank began to warp. In a few years 
the plank-work was abandoned and the road, like 
hundreds of others all over the State, was heavily 
graveled and made an excellent turnpike, in which 
condition it remains to-day. 

The first " show," McComber's Menagerie, ap- 
peared in the town on the 26th and 27th of July, 
1830, and exhibited on the open space back of Hen- 
derson's tavern, about where the Central Engine 
house is, or a little north and east of it. Another 
exhibited at the same place on the 23d and 24th of 
August of the same year, showing among other curi- 
osities a " rompo." Tradition does not retain a de- 
scription of this mysterious beast. The next sum- 
mer saw the introduction here of the first soda foun- 
tain in Dunlap & McDougal's drug-store on East 
Washington Street, near the middle of the block be- 



108 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 




THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



109 



tween Pennsylvania Street and the alley west of it on 
the north side, subsequently kept by Scudder & Han- 
neman. In February, 1831, the first artist, a por- 
trait-painter by the name of M. G. Rogers, came 
here for a professional visit. The 8th of January, 
80 long celebrated in one way or another by the ad- 
mirers of " Old Hickory," was celebrated in Indian- 
apolis for the first time in 1830, when an address was 
delivered by Alexander F. Morrison, brother of the 
late Judge James and the banker William H., who 
had recently removed here and started an administra- 
tion paper called the Iiiduma Democrat. It suc- 
ceeded the Gazette, and became the Sentinel in 1841, 
as will appear more fully in the history of the press. 
The celebrations of the Fourth of July were kept up, 
and in 1830 there were two, one of the Sunday- 
schools under Marshal James Blake, and one of the 
citizens under Marshal Demas McFarland. The 
deaths of Adams and Jefi'erson were celebrated here 
on the 12th of August with appropriate funeral cere- 
monies. The first three-story brick building was 
erected by William Sanders, north side of Washing- 
ton Street, a little west of Meridian, in the summer 
of 1831. It is still standing in an improved condi- 
tion. That same summer showed Indianapolis the 
first elephant, two of them in fact, an adult and a 
baby. They were not in a menagerie, but traveling 
on their own merits. The population of Centre town- 
ship by the census of 1830 was one thousand and 
ninety-four. 

Pretty nearly midway between the statement of 
the census and the condition of the settlement at the 
removal of the capital is the estimate of February, 
1827, in the Journal. The town had then the new 
■' court-house, a Presbyterian Church with thirty 
members, a Baptist Church with thirty-six members, 
a Methodist Church with ninety-three members, 
worshiping in a cabin but building a brick church," 
the walls of which were completed and inclosed 
in the fall. A Sunday-school had been in exist- 
ence five years, and had then twenty teachers and 
one hundred and fifty pupils. There were twenty- 
five brick hou.ses in the place, sixty frames, and eighty 
hewed and rough log ; rents were high and houses in 
demand. The Governor's house in the Circle was 



then in progress, and six two-story and five one-story 
brick houses with a large number of frames had been 
built that year. The editor thought the condition of 
things promising enough to inaugurate an era of 
manufiietures and steam-power to produce at home 
the ten thousand dollars' worth of goods brought from 
abroad. Among the year's importations were seventy- 
six kegs of tobacco, two hundred barrels of flour, one 
hundred kegs of powder, four thousand five hundred 
pounds of yarn, and two hundred and thirteen bar- 
rels of whiskey, besides seventy-one made here (Bayou 
Blue), a pretty profuse supply of whiskey for a popu- 
lation of but little more than one thousand, and a 
considerable number of them women and children, 
who could not be expected to drink much. Probably 
half was sold to the country around or even farther 
away, but even the half, or one hundred and forty-two 
barrels, about five thousand gallons, would make five 
gallons for every mouth, little and big, in the dona- 
tion, and twenty probably for every adult male. The 
large importation of powder shows that no little de- 
pendence was still placed in the rifle as the food 
provider. 

On the 3d of June, 1832, the news of the out- 
break of the Sac and Fox Indians under Black Hawk 
reached the town, and next day a call was made for a 
hundred and fifty men of the Fortieth Regiment, 
belonging to this county, and for as many more from 
the adjoining counties, to rendezvous here on the 
9th, each man mounted, and armed with rifle, knife, 
and tomahawk, and a supply of powder for the cam- 
paign. When assembled here they were organized 
in three companies, under Capts. James P. Drake, 
John W. Redding, and Henry Brenton. There was 
some competition for the command of the battalion 
between Col. A. W. Russell and George L. Kinnard, 
a member of Congress in 1835, and scalded to death 
by the explosion of a steamer on the Ohio, while on 
his way to the national capital. He began here as a 
school-teacher a few years before this military expe- 
dition. An adjustment was made which gave the 
command to Russell and the adjutancy to Kinnard. 
The night before the expedition started a consider- 
able portion was encamped on the southeast corner of 
the Military Ground, at the present crossing of Wash- 



110 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



ington and West Streets, and the next morning, while 
the people of the town were gathering round ob- 
serving the unwonted spectacle, the men were mould- 
ing bullets by their camp-fires, or throwing toma- 
hawks at a mark. When all were mounted and 
ready to march they made as fine a body of men as 
could have been found in any army in the world. 
They went from here to Chicago, then a fort and an 
Indian trading-post, guided by William Conner, found 
the war virtually at an end, and marched round the 
end of the lake to South Bend, where the late John 
D. Defrees, then editing a paper there, gave them the 
name they have worn ever since, and will as long as 
the memory or history of the expedition remains, the 
" Bloody Three Hundred." It was said that some of 
them wanted to fight about it, but the cooler heads 
dissuaded them. The only warlike incident of the 
little campaign was the firing of a frightened picket at 
a vagrant cow one night, which alarmed the whole 
camp. The battalion returned on the 3d of July, 
and took part in the celebration next day. The fol- 
lowing January they were paid by Maj. Lamed. 
William Warren, whose hands were blown oflF while 
firing a salute to the command, was afterwards pen- 
sioned by act of Congress, obtained by Mr. Kinnard, 
under some neat little confusion of him with, the 
military expedition, with which he had no more to 
do than he had with the " Russian Expedition." 
He was digging a cellar when he joined the gun 
squad. The "good old times" were not so much 
more squeamish or scrupulous than ours after all. 

During the summer and early fall of 1832 sub- 
scriptions were made and steps taken to build a 
market-house, the leading men being Charles I. 
Hand and the late John Givan, then a prominent 
and honored citizen, in later life a pauper and semi- 
tramp. It was built the following summer where it 
still stands, greatly extended to be sure, but other- 
wise unchanged, and wholly inadequate to its pur- 
poses. Efibrts have very recently been made to re- 
place the old structure with one suitable to the size 
and needs of the city, built with the bequest made 
some years ago by the late Stephen Tomlinson, but 



and the alleged probability that the expense would 
exceed the bequest and create a necessity for more 
city tax, and some technical oversight in letting the 
contract brought an injunction from the court on the 
project, and thus it still lies. Thomas McOuat, 
Josiah Davis, and John Walton were the committee 
charged with the supervision of the work on the first 
and present market-house. Under the act of Jan. 
26, 1832, authorizing a lease of a seminary site to 
the trustees of the county seminary, Demas McFar- 
land. Dr. Livingston Dunlap, and J. S. Hall, the 
trustees, obtained the lease the same year, and began 
measures for erecting the building. The most im- 
portant event of this year, however, was the incor- 
poration of the town under the general law. 

There was no separation of the town from the 
rest of the county till now. All had been gov- 
erned alike by State laws and the oflBcers appointed 
by them. On the 3d of September, 1832, a public 
meeting was held in the court-house, and it was de- 
cided to incorporate the town under the general in- 
corporation act. An election for five trtistees was 
held the same month, and Henry P. Coburn, John 
Wilkins, Samuel Merrill, Samuel Henderson, and 
John G. Brown were chosen. They organized by 
making Mr.. Henderson president and Israel P. Grif- 
fith secretary. Five wards were made of the old 
plat, — First, all east of Alabama Street ; Second, 
from Alabama to Pennsylvania ; Third, from Penn- 
sylvania to Meridian; Fourth, from Meridian to 
Tennessee ; Fifth, all west of Tennessee. The first 
marshal and collector was Samuel Jennison ; the first 
assessor, Glidden True ; the first market-master, 
Fleming T. Luse. Other officers were appointed 
later. In December two general ordinances were 
published, one for the general regulation of the 
town, the other relating specially to the markets. 
The general ordinance created the offices of clerk, 
marshal and collector, treasurer and assessor, all held 
under bond and security. Assessments were to be 
made in January, and tax collections reported to the 
treasurer in June. It will not be uninteresting to 
note the leading ofienses defined by this first act of 



considerable opposition was made in consequence of municipal legislation, — firing guns or flying kites on 
the coupling of a city hall with the market building, the streets, leaving cellar-doors open or teams un- 



THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



Ill 



hitched, driving across or on foot-paths, racing 
horses, letting hogs run at large, keeping stallions 
on Washington Street, keeping piles of wood on the 
same street more than twelve hours, or piles of 
shavings anywhere more than two days, keeping a 
drinking-house or a "show" without license. Of- 
fenders were to be sued in twenty days before a jus- 
tice of the peace in the name of the trustees. 
Meetings of the Board were to be held on the first 
Friday of each month, but at any time on a proper 
call. The market ordinance provided for markets on 
Wednesdays and Saturdays, two hours after daylight, 
the market-master to look after weights and the qual- 
ities of marketable articles, as he does now. Huck- 
stering was prohibited. Town elections were to be 
held annually in September. 

Under this first municipal organization the town 
continued till 1836, then the Legislature passed a 
special act of incorporation legalizing the action of 
the trustees previously. The wards were left un- 
changed, but the election was shifted from September 
to April. The trustees were to elect a president, 
clerk, marshal, lister or assessor, collector, and other 
customary town officers. They were also to levy 
taxes and improve the streets and sidewalks at the 
cost of the owners of the adjacent property. The 
rate of taxation could not exceed one-half of one per 
cent., and could only be levied on property within 
the town plat. The act of incorporation included the 
whole donation for all purposes but taxation. The 
new Board continued the old ordinances mainly un- 
changed. Settlement was made by the former officer 
to April, 1836, the treasurer showing the receipt of a 
revenue for the year of sixteen hundred and ten dol- 
lars, and the expenditure of all but one hundred and 
twenty-four dollars, a far more liberal margin than can 
be found between receipts and expenses nowadays. 
On the 17th of February, 1838, a reincorporation 
act was passed, making no material change, however, 
except increasinsr the wards to six, electing the presi- 
dent of the Board by a general popular vote, and 
each ward trustee by the voters of the ward. Pre- 
viously all had been elected by a general vote. The 
Board was to be the " Common Council," and elected 
annually, four to make a quorum. The president 



had the jurisdiction and powers of a justice of the 
peace, and the marshal those of a constable. The 
trustees received twelve dollars a year, or one dollar 
for each regular monthly meeting. The new wards 
were : First, all east of Alabama ; Second, to Penn- 
sylvania ; Third, to Meridian; Fourth, to Illinois; 
Fifth, to Mississippi ; Sixth, to the river. Tax sales 
for delinquencies could be made by the new charter, 
and the first was made on the 25th of October, 1839. 
The four boundary streets of the city plat, North, 
South, East, and West, had previously been mere 
alleys, or closed altogether in places, but the new 
Council ordered them opened. This city organiza- 
tion continued until it was changed for something like 
a regular city government of a mayor and Council, 
in 1847. Some amendments were made from time 
to time, but nothing that affected the general course 
of public business. In February, 1839, the taxes 
collected in West Indianapolis (now Indianola), west 
of the river, were ordered to be expended, and alleys 
were authorized to be opened in the donation. In 
1840, in February, councilmen were required to serve 
two years instead of one, and were given twenty-four 
dollars a year. In February, 1841, the marshal was 
elected by popular vote, and on Jan. 15, 1844, all the 
town officers were changed from appointment by the 
Council to election by the people. No effort at street 
improvement was made till 1836, and no city engineer 
employed till that year. No grading or paving of 
sidewalks was attempted till 1839 or thereabouts. 
The first survey attempted for any such purpose was 
made by William Sullivan, for many years a justice 
of the peace, at one time a teacher in the Old Semi- 
nary, and one of the most honored of the old resi- 
dents. He made a survey of the street and alley 
between Meridian and Pennsylvania, north side of 
Washington, in 1838. In 1841, James Wood was 
employed to make a general survey, and did so. His 
grades were followed till it was found that his whole 
scheme of survey was based on the idea of turning 
the city surface into an inclined plane sloping to the 
southwest corner and into the river, without regard 
to natural features favoring a less artificial and ex- 
pensive drainage. Of the changes of municipal gov- 
ernment after the first organization as a city in 1847, 



112 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



an account will be found under the heading of 
" Municipal Government." 

For the first twelve years of the existence of the 
town its history and that of the county are identical. 
The' laws and officers of both were the same, the 
taxes, improvements, and changes the same, so far as 
they were dependent on public and official action. 
For a period still longer, as before suggested, there 
was a close identity of social condition. The sepa- 
ration legally came in 1832, but the other only 
became distinct a decade later. There is not much 
to say of the county outside of the town in this 
period of identity. After the erection of the public 
buildings, already noted, there was little to do and 
little means to do with. The following statement of 
receipts for the first half-dozen years of the county 
organization will tell the story of its financial condi- 
tion. Treasurer Yandes' report for 1822 shows that 
the total receipts from licenses and taxes was nine 
hundred and seventy-five dollars and eighty-four 
cents. Another statement shows the net revenue of 
this first year to be eight hundred and fifty-five dol- 
lars. The following table of receipts and expenses of 
the county from its organization to the separation of 
the town by incorporation is compiled from the 
records of the County Board : 



HeceiptB. 

For 1822 S855.00 

" 1823 730.29 

" 1824 689.60 

" 1825 845.93 

" 1826 915.91 

" 1827 1157.87 

" 1828 918.69 

" 1829 1786. 73i 

" 1830 2095.48i 

" 1831 2242.454 

" 1832 3176.21 J 



Expenses. 

For 1822 Not stated. 

" 1823 $863. 70i 

" 1824 962.27J 

" 1825 1235.18* 

" 1326 501.73 

" 1827 683.69 

" 1928 688. 15i 

" 1829 1034. 13i 

" 1830 1045.34i 

" 1831 1330.59 

" 1832 2788.03+ 



The County Board, when the county was organized, 
consisted of three commissioners, as already noted. 
On the 31st of January, 1824, an act of the Legisla- 
ture changed this mode of doing county business for 
a board composed of all the justices of the peace of 
the county. This was repealed in February, 1831, 
and the board of three commissioners restored. In 
1835 this was again made to give place to a board of 
justices, which was once more and finally displaced by 
commissioners in 1837. The first meeting of the 



board of justices was on the 6tb of September, 1824, 
at the house of John Carr, the court-house not being 
quite finished yet. Joel Wright was elected presi- 
dent over Wilkes Reagin and Obed Foote. The 
members present were Joel Wright, Henry D. Bell, 
Obed Foote, Jeremiah J. Corbaley, John C. Hume, 
William D. Rooker, Sismund Basye, Wilkes Reagin, 
and Joseph Beeler. It may be noted as a mark of 
the culture of the times that the president of the 
board signs himself " Preasadent of the Bord." 

The work of the Board, whether of justices or com- 
missioners, was largely of a routine character ; receiv- 
ing petitions for the opening of county roads and 
neighborhood roads, appointing " viewers" to examine 
and report on the proposed lines, allowing little claims 
for services or labor of one kind or another, licensing 
stores composed the bulk of it. Occasionally a con- 
stable was appointed and a list of grand and petit jurors 
provided for the clerk to draw from in court terms. 
The first roll of grand jurors, selected from among the 
tax-payers of the county at the May session, 1822, 
and numbering " fifty-four discreet householders," will 
not be uninteresting : 

Alexander Ralston. John McClung. 

Joseph C. Reed. Thomas O'Neal. 

Isaac Wilson. Reuben Putnam. 

Thomas Anderson. John Allison. 

Joseph Catterlin. William C. Blackmore. 

Asahel Dunning. William Dyer. 

Elijah Fox. Samuel D. Honelly. 

Samuel Harding. William Conner. 

Aaron Lambeth. Curtis Mallory. 

Morris Morris. Wilkes Reagin. 

George Norwood. George Smith. 

Daniel Pettingill. Joel Wright. 

WUliam D. Rooker. Robert Brenton. 

John Myers. Jeremiah J. Corbaley. 

James Paige. John Fox. 

Judah Leaming. John Hawkins. 

Collins Thorp. Alexis Jackson. 

John Finch. Samuel G. Mitchell. 

Archibald C. Reed. Samuel Morrow. 

John Smock. James Porter. 

David Wood. William Reagin. 

George Buckner. Peter Harmonson. 



THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



113 



Isaac Coe. 
Francis Davis. 
James Givan. 
Jeremiah Johnson. 
Zenas Lake. 



Isaac Stevens. 
Amasa Makepeace. 
Joseph iMcCormick. 
William Bush. 
William Forster. 



A sample of the ordinary business of the county 
will serve as well as a full copy of the records to 
inform the reader of its character. Here is an allow- 
ance : " It is ordered that Calvin Fletcher be allowed 
five dollars and fifty cents for three days' services in 
appraising town lots under the direction of the lister 
(Col. James Paxton), and Caleb Scudder be allowed 
one dollar and fifty cents for one day's similar services, 
all payable out of the county treasury." " Allowed 
Joseph Clark, for making two jury boxes to contain 
the selected names for the grand and petit jurors, 
one dollar." " It is ordered that Calvin Fletcher and 
John Packer be appointed to serve as overseers of the 
poor in Centre- Warren township for, during, and 
until the next session on the second Monday of May 
next." " Allowed Francis Davis, David Wood, and 
Demas L. McFarland one dollar and fifty cents each 
for two days' services in viewing Harding's road (line 
of old National road), and to Alexander W. Russell, 
for two days' services in surveying the same, two dol- 
lars, payable," etc. Whenever a road was petitioned 
for and favorably considered — usually the result, 
though sometimes remonstrances were put in and the 
road disallowed — three reputable citizens and house- 
holders were appointed to " view ' it, and upon their 
report the road was ordered opened. The routes were 
always indicated by the lines of the Congressional 
survey, " section," " township," and " range," and 
marked, as the reports frequently say, " with two hacks 
with tomahawk" or " two chops with an axe" on the 
trees at certain points. Some petitions wanted the 
road opened " to the centre of town." There were 
no cleared streets, not even Washington, at the first 
meetings for county business. Roads out of and 
through the town were cow-paths or stumpy openings 
too densely closed in with trees and brush to allow 
one neighbor to see the house of anotlier within hail- 
ing distance. These will serve as specimens of the 
county road-work, and it was a large portion of all that 
was done. At every session there were from two to a 



half-dozen road petitions to act on, " viewers" to ap- 
point, and reports to receive. Here is a specimen of 
a " store license :" " James Givan and son bavin" 
satisfied the Board that they have not in amount more 
than one thousand dollars in stock of foreign merchan- 
dise, it is ordered that on producing the treasurer's 
receipt for ten dollars they receive a licen.se to retail 
foreign merchandise in this county for one year." The 
tavern license was twelve dollars, and three taverns 
paid it in 1823, — Hawkins', Carter's, and Blake & 
Henderson's. Occasionally allowances were made for 
the support of paupers by private citizens for a short 
time, and like allowances were made to doctors for 
services to the same class. Once in 1825 an allow- 
ance of three dollars is made to Samuel Duke for a 
coffin for a drowned negro, apparently the first person 
drowned in the settlement. The following order 
possesses the interest of novelty, at least to the great 
majority of readers, who are not aware that debtors 
could be imprisoned like thieves in Marion County in 
early times : " Allowed to Hervey Bates for meat and 
drink furnished to John J. E. Barnett and Samuel 
Roberts (one of the first constables), insolvent per- 
sons confined in the county jail at the suit of the 
State." The amount is not given, as the item is 
one of several allowed to Mr. Bates as sheriff. The 
appointment of supervisors of roads, of school dis- 
tricts, of the poor, the resignations and elections of 
justices and constables, levies of taxes will about 
complete the list of the labors of the County Board, 
added to those above named, during the twelve 
years that the town and county governments were 
identical. 

The events and incidents illustrating the develop- 
ment of the town during seven years, from the organ- 
ization of the first municipal government in 1832 to 
the abandonment of the public works in 1839, which 
forms the second division of the second period of the 
city's history, may be treated in four groups : 1st, 
The temporary improvement in business and real 
estate values, originating in the confidence of an early 
completion of the State's " Internal Improvement 
System ;" 2d, The first establishment of some of the 
industries which are now among the chief agencies of 
the city's prosperity ; 3d, Enlarged educational ad- 



lU 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



vantages ; 4th, The organization of some of the usual 
business conveniences of cities. 

1st. Within three years after ihe organization of 
the town government the swell of the " Internal Im- 
provement" tide began to be felt. Prices of lots stiff- 
ened and speculation began to reach out for chances. 
The State had spent one hundred thousand dollars in 
making roads, but that could not go far in creating 
transportation facilities in a country of dense woods 
and few settlements. What the people wanted was 
means of getting away and getting home with goods 
and produce, and country roads were a very inade- 
quate provision. Railroads were a recent improve- 
ment about which the whole country was excited, and 
Indiana wanted railroads. The Wabash and Erie 
Canal was advancing with the help of Congressional 
grants, but water-ways were wanted for the central 
and eastern parts of the State. A canal to connect 
the Ohio with the Wabash Canal was to pass through 
here. A railroad to make a similar connection 
higher up the Ohio was also to pass through 
here. Other railroads, as before noted, aimed here 
either as a terminus or necessary junction. The Leg- 
islature of 1835-36, the first that met in the new 
State-House, was confidently expected to go largely 
into the improvement business and give Indianapolis 
an especially elevating lift. Thus started the first 
speculative movement in the history of the city. The 
Legislature did not disappoint expectation. The 
" Internal Improvement Bill," giving State aid to five 
or six railroad, turnpike, and canal projects, notably 
the Central Canal and the Madison Railroad, and 
ordering the issue of ten million dollars of bonds 
to make the aid effective, was passed on the 26th of 
January, 1836, and was welcomed in advance on the 
16th with bonfires and a brilliant illumination, the 
first ever witnessed here, and the saddest in the out- 
come that was ever witnessed anywhere. The canal 
it was known would pass through one of the western 
streets, and speculation moved that way. Some of 
the heaviest sales that had ever been made were of 
lots on Washington Street, along the two blocks be- 
tween Mississippi and Missouri. William Quarles, 
one of the most prominent criminal lawyers of the 
State, built a residence as close to the line of the 



canal as he could get. The settlement which had so 
long been moving eastward, away from the river and 
the site of the first settlement, began moving back. 
Houses were rising rapidly and settlers coming in en- 
couragingly. The great crash came the next year, 
but it did not disturb the confidence of the people 
here. The State's bonds still supplied money, kept 
the public works going, and furnished means of spec- 
ulation and appearances of prosperity; but in 1839 
the shock fell with full force here, after sending 
ahead premonitory tremors for several months. Prices 
fell and speculators were ruined ; business was univer- 
sally embarrassed ; real estate, both town and country, 
was abundant but unavailable, — it would not bring 
cash and could not pay debts. A good many sacri- 
ficed all they had and even then did not pay all they 
owed. Many others made compromises that enabled 
them to look around and wait for chances, and finally 
came out with a good start in another race. The 
Bankrupt Act of 1841 proved a great help to strug- 
gling honesty with unavailable means, yet fewer of 
the business men of Indianapolis than of probably 
any town in the State sought its relief. The great 
" Internal Improvement System," which was expected 
to prove so great a blessing, turned out an almost 
unmitigated curse. For six years it burdened the 
tax-payer and for twenty discredited the State. The 
failure to keep up the interest in 1841 and thence 
on to 1846, when the Butler compromise with the 
bondholders was completed (by giving up the Wabash 
Canal for seven million five hundred thousand dollars, 
half of the principal debt, and issuing two and a 
half per cent, bonds for the unpaid interest and five 
per cent, bonds for the other half of the principal), 
placed Indiana among the repudiating States, and was 
a drag on her and the capital town for many a year. 

The canal and railroad intended for this place were 
not wholly thrown away, however. The Madison 
Railroad was completed and running north to Vernon 
a year or two before the panic struck it. Until 1843 
the State operated it with little advantage to anybody. 
Then it was sold to a company, as will be more par- 
ticularly related in the part of the work treating 
of " Transportation" and railroads. The canal was 
worked in many places at once along a large part of 



THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



115 



its length, but mainly from the river at Noblesville to 
the lower part of Morgan County. A large force 
was engaged in and near the town, and it was at that 
time, from 1837 to 1839, that songs of " the canawl" 
were so popular with the " uncultured." Some allu- 
sion to them was made in the preceding chapter. 
Of course there were frequent rows and bloody fights. 
On one occasion in 1838 two factions of the Irish 
hands kept up a fight nearly all day, engaging some 
hundreds altogether and furnishing a good many sur- 
gical subjects, but none fortunately for the sexton. 
For two years long lines of little shanties, stuck in 
among heaps of sand and piles of logs and brush cut 
out of the line of the canal, were conspicuous features 
of a dreary scene that they made doubly dreary. 
Simultaneously with the canal work was going on the 
grading and metaling of the National road, and the 
two evil attractions brought here an unusual force of 
worthless or mischievous characters, as noted in a 
previous chapter. Their outrages both of violence 
and theft became intolerable, and a public meeting 
was called to devise a remedy. It was decided to 
make an organization of the citizens, something like a 
Vigilance Committee, with the conspicuous difference 
that it was intended to enforce instead of supersede 
the laws. This movement had a wholesome effect, 
which was strengthened afterward by the rough hand- 
ling of the leader, Burkhart, as related in the sketch 
of the history of camp-meetings. 

The canal was entirely completed between the city 
and Broad Ripple, wliere there was a feeder-dam, and 
for a time used a little for the legitimate purpose 
of transporting wood and corn and occasional loads 
of hay or lumber, and a good deal for the less legiti- 
mate purpose of bathing and fishing. If passengers 
ever used it they did it in a skiff. An eager run was 
made for water-power, as will be noticed further along 
in the account of the manufactures of this period. 
A stone lock was put in at Market Street, and a race- 
way taken westward north of Market, as may be seen 
to-day, for mills nearer the river. Two wooden locks 
were put in at the bluff of the swamp called " Palmer's 
Glade," near the line of Kansas Street, but never 
finished. The canal was never used for anything but 
a mill-race below the stone lock, and for many of its 



last years it was not used for that. It was made a sort 
of open sewer, into which eveiybody who lived handy 
threw their old boots and dead cats, ashes and rotten 
cabbage, till it was too offensive to be borne. In 1870 
it was abandoned altogether below Market Street, and 
a sewer was laid in the bottom of it from Market to 
Louisiana Street, where it connected with the main 
sewer down Kentucky Avenue. Then it was rapidly 
filled up as far down as Merrill Street, and in scattered 
places farther south, till it was measurably effaced. 
Recently it has been built in and over, and on the site 
of the steel-rail rolling-mill has been so completely 
destroyed that the most familiar eye fails to discern its 
place, and only in a short " reach" above Morris 
Street can any remains be detected. From Market 
Street to the Ripple it is now an important adjunct of 
the water-works, and is used for boating, swimming, 
fishing, skating, and in packing far more than the 
river is or ever was. The account of the changes in 
this portion of it belongs to the sketch of the water- 
works. The owners of the ground (or their assignees) 
through which the canal diverged eastward from 
Missouri Street at the crossing of Merrill, reaching 
nearly to Tennessee Street, when abandoned by the 
State's assignees as a means of navigation and hydraulic 
power, reclaimed their proprietary rights. The In- 
dianapolis, Cincinnati and Lafayette Railroad Com- 
pany, which had purchased of the State's assignees the 
lower part of the work, brought suit to restrain them 
from filling it up or obstructing it. Judge Drum- 
mond, of the United States Court, in an elaborate 
opinion, sustained the rights of the original owners of 
the ground, and thus this costly work was legally 
allowed to be wiped out, so far as the lower station of 
it is concerned. It was virtually finished, except an 
aqueduct at Pleasant Run and some of the southern 
creeks, nearly or quite to the Bluffs, but after the 
abandonment of 1839 it was never used, never held 
water, and was soon overgrown with underbrush. 

2d. Before the organization of the town govern- 
ment no attempt was made at manufacturing other 
than the usual custom work of the mechanics who 
are among the early settlers of all towns, except in 
iron, leather, pottery, and the preparation of ginseng. 
There were two pottery establishments in the place 



116 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



as early as 1832 or earlier, and a third not far from 
the same time. One of the early two was on Mary- 
land Street, near Tennessee, the site of the Chamber 
of Commerce, belonging to a Mr. Myers ; the other 
was removed to make room for the State Bank build- 
ing in 1840, and was established by Robert Brenton. 
It occupied the peak between Illinois Street and 
Kentucky Avenue, very near the first school-house. 
The third was on Washington Street, north side, 
near New Jer.?ey, and set its furnace in the "ravine" 
that ran through the ground down to the creek, as 
described in the '' topography" of the town. These 
probably made ware for stock, besides what was made 
on order, before the town organization. Daniel 
Yandes, one of the industrial pioneers and benefactors 
of the settlement, in connection with John Wilkius, 
carried on a tannery on Alabama Street, near the site 
of the city station-house, for several years before. As 
early as 1830 or earlier James Blake and Nicholas 
McCarty established a ginseng or, as it was called in 
its day, a " sang"-factory, on the south bluflF of 
Pogue's Run Valley, near the Cincinnati Railroad 
depot site. Mr. McCarty bought the ginseng of 
farmers here, and through his agents and branch 
stores in other places, and Mr. Blake attended to the 
preparation of it and its shipment to Philadelphia 
for the Chinese market. Very near the time of the 
first town organization Joshua Grover did some iron 
foundry work, but nothing of any importance was at- 
tempted till August, 1832. Then R. A. McPherson 
& Co. established a considerable foundry on the west 
side of the river, at the end of the bridge then in 
progress. It failed, however, about the same time 
the big steam-mill enterprise failed, as before related. 
These are all of the more extended industries that 
preceded the town government. There were the 
grist- and saw-mills and carding-machines, and the 
usual blacksmith, carpenter, wagon-maker, tailor, 
shoemaker, cabinet, and other shops, and the town 
fiddler. Bill Bagwell, made cigars on the southwest 
corner of Illinois and Maryland Streets, but the 
workmen usually kept no journeymen, and did all 
their own work for cu.stomers. For twenty years or 
more apprentices were taken under indenture to learn 
the trade and live with their masters, getting a sum 



of money and a suit of clothes at twenty-one, but the 
apprentice system passed away with the changes 
brought by the railroads. It is supposed that Mr. 
Johnson, who established the first stage line in 1828, 
opened a shop for coach repairs, and later for manu- 
facture, about the time of the establishment of the 
town government. 

Enterprise began to appear more conspicuously 
soon after this. In 1834, John L. Young and Wil- 
liam Wernweg started the first brewery, on Maryland 
Street, south side, halfway between Missouri and 
West. About 1840 it was taken by Joseph Laux, 
and later by Mr. Meikel. About the same time a 
rope-walk was started on Market Street, east of the 
market-house, and a linseed-oil mill was put in opera- 
tion by John S. Barnes and Williamson Maxwell in 
a stable on the alley south of Maryland Street, near 
Missouri, close to the grounds of the present ward 
school. Scudder & Hannaman got it the next year, 
and moved it to the river bank in 1839. In 1835 
the same enterprising firm began the manufacture of 
tobacco in the log building on Kentucky Avenue, 
below Merrill, where a carding-machine, run by 
horse-power, had previously been operated. In that 
year James Bradley, with one or two associates, cut, 
cured, and packed pork in Myers' old pottery-shop, 
on the site of the Chamber of Commerce, for the first 
time in the history of the place. It was the feeble 
beginning, ending in failure, of what has grown to be 
the largest industrial interest of the city. Its ill- 
fortune warned enterprise away for several years, but 
when it came again, a half-dozen years later, it 
" came to stay." In 1835, Robert Underbill and 
John Wood started a steam foundry on Pennsyl- 
vania Street, near the site of the Second Presby- 
terian Church, and maintained it successfully in 
making plow points, mill gearing, and domestic hol- 
low-ware till 1852, when he removed to South Penn- 
sylvania Street, began a larger establishment, failed, 
and left the building to other uses, and it was burned 
in 1858. In 1836-37, Young & Pottage, carrying 
on the hardware business, on the southwest corner of 
Meridian and Washington Streets, engaged John J. 
Nash to make carpenters' planes, and the excellence 
of his work commanded a profitable trade as long as 



THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



117 



the firm continued. In 1836, Hiram Devinney be- 
gan the manufacture of mattresses, cushions, and 
similar work, near Maryland Street and the line of 
the canal. In 1839, Scudder & Hannanian built a 
carding-mill on the river bank, near the site of the 
water-works, and added some spinning, weaving, 
and fulling machinery. About the same time Na- 
thaniel West established a mill of the same kind at 
the crossing of the canal and the Michigan road, 
long called Cottontown. He also carried on cotton- 
spinning there at the same time. At very nearly 
the same time a German by the name of Protzman, 
the first leader of the first brass band in the town, 
began the manufacture of soap, on the canal, near 
McCarty Street, then a lane, among cow-pastures and 
cornfields; and about that time, too, Nicholas Mc- 
Carty began the manufacture of hemp, grown on his 
Bayou farm, on the canal, near the present line of 
Ray Street. Within a few months William Sheets 
established the first paper-mill on the canal and race 
at Market Street, and maintained it successfully 
nearly all his life after. In 1839 or 1840 a hay- 
press was set up on the lot opposite the northwest 
corner of the State-House Square, and a considerable 
quantity of hay was pressed there for shipment by 
flat-boats down the Mississippi River. There were 
two or three at one time, but the business was not 
maintained long. These early industries will be noticed 
more particularly in the department of Manufactures. 
It will be noticed that several of the industries re- 
ferred to here were started in 1838 and 1839, just 
before the failure of the public works. The canal, 
it was confidently believed, would some time be 
completed, and, in any event, it supplied a consider- 
able water-power, which could be leased on favorable 
terms of the State. This is the explanation of the 
matter. By the 11th of June, 1838, sites were 
leased for one woolen-mill and one cotton-mill, two 
paper-mills, one oil-, two grist-, and two saw-mills, 
and the buildings soon after erected and set to work. 
There was long complaint of the inadequacy of the 
power, and the frequent obstructions from grasses 
and other vegetable growths, and of the ofi'ensiveness 
of the canal-bed when the water was shut off to allow 
the grass to be cut. The Legislature ordered it sold 



Jan. 19, 1850, and it was sold in 1851 to Gould & 
Jackson, who sold the next fall to the " Central 
Canal Hydraulic Water- Works and Manufacturing 
Company," an association whose multitudinous name 
was the best part of it. From that concern the canal 
passed to other hands, and finally, as already stated, 
into the possession of the present W^ater-Works 
Company, where it is likely to stay. 

In February, 1835, the State Board of Agriculture 
was chartered by the Legislature, with James Blake, 
Larkin Siinms, John Owen, and M. M. Henkle direc- 
tors, of whom Mr. Blake was president, and Mr. 
Henkle secretary. They offered premiums for essays, 
and made rules for the organization of county asso- 
ciations. A State Agricultural Convention was held 
in the State-House Dec. 14, 1835, and two or three 
smaller meetings were held annually afterwards, but 
the enterprise was premature. A County Society was 
formed in June, 1835, with Nathan B. Palmer as 
president and Douglass Maguire as secretary, and col- 
lected subscriptions for a premium fund, aided to the 
extent of fifty dollars by the board of justices, which 
was disbursed on the last day of October in one hun- 
dred and eighty-four dollars of premiums on exhibi- 
tions made in the court-house yard at that time. For 
the premiums of the next fair four hundred dollars 
was subscribed, and the exhibitions promised to be- 
come as permanent as the State Fairs are now, but 
the crash of 1837 ruined this with many another 
promising project of improvement. The " Benevolent 
Society," still the most extensive, active, and effective 
of the city's charities, was organized in November, 
1835, with much the same arrangement as now, — a 
president, secretary, treasurer, depositary, and visitors. 
The latter collected clothes, money, household goods, 
groceries, anything that the destitute could use, and 
stored them with the depositary, to be delivered on 
proper orders. Several associations have been formed 
on the same plan since, particularly the " Ladies' 
Relief Society" and the " Flower Blission," but one 
has disbanded, and the other, active and beneficent as 
it is, can hardly hope to reach the extent of service 
of the association now nearly a half-century old. 

3d. The improvement of educational agencies in 
this interval following the institution of the town gov- 



118 



HISTOKY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MAKION COUNTY. 



ernment was hardly less conspicuous than the improve- 
ment of business and real estate, and it was much 
more durable. The " Old Seminary" was finished in 
1834, and first occupied by the late Gen. Ebenezer 
Dumont, Sept. 1, 1834. The following January he 
was succeeded by William J. Hill, who afterwards 
taught in the old carpenter-shop on the northwest 
corner of Market and Delaware Streets, where he was 
succeeded in 1836 by Josephus Cicero Worrall, as he 
always signed himself in his magniloquent quarterly 
announcements. Thomas D. Gregg, who died some 
years ago and left a handsome bequest to the city, 
succeeded Mr. Hill in May, 1836, in the seminary, 
and William Sullivan, for many years a justice of the 
peace and still living, honored by everybody, followed 
in December, 1836. Rev. William A. Holliday, 
father of John H., the founder of the Indianapolis 
Mews, came next in August, 1837. James S. Kem- 
per, still annually honored in the reunions of the 
"Old Seminary Boys," succeeded Mr. Holliday in the 
summer of 1838, and continued till 1845, when Rev. 
J. P. Safibrd, recently deceased in Zanesville, Ohio, 
succeeded for a short time, and was followed by Mr. 
B. L. Lang till 1852. Mr. Kemper's methods and 
success, and his long retention of the school, made 
him and the seminary so popular as to draw pupils 
from other States, and the course of study was as 
thorough in all branches as that of most colleges. A 
large number of the prominent men of the city and 
State were pupils at the Old Seminary. Five years 
ago they formed an association called the " Old Semi- 
nary Boys," gray-headed and bald-headed fathers and 
grandfathers, to hold annual reunions, and with their 
families renew old games, associations, and memories. 
Twice Mr. Kemper and his wife have been present, 
and once Mr. Lang was present. The officers now 
are : President, Calvin Fletcher ; Secretary, George 
W. Sloan ; Corresponding Secretary, Oliver M. Wilson ; 
Treasurer, Ingram Fletcher ; Historian, B. R. Sul- 
grove. In 1878, at the first reunion, there were 
" Old Boys" present who had not met their old 
school-mates and teacher, Mr. Kemper, in forty years. 
It was a gathering almost unique in any country of 
the world, and entirely so in Indiana. A meeting of 
the school-boys and teacher of a school long past in a 



house long torn away, after the lapse of forty years, 
was something to remember, at least for the partici- 
pants. The seminary in 1853 was taken into the 
free-school system, then first made practical. More 
wil> be said of the schools in the proper place. 

A few years later than the opening of the County 
Seminary, mainly for boys, though girls attended for 
a short time, the Misses Axtell opened a school of 
corresponding grade for girls exclusively. It was 
called the " Indianapolis Female Institute," and was 
chartered by the Legislature at the session of 1836— 
37. The first term began June 14, 1837, in the 
upper story of the Sanders Block, on Washington 
near Meridian Street. Subsequently a removal was 
made to the upper rooms on the same street a half- 
block east of Meridian, where the city offices were 
kept for a time, and burned in the winter of 1851-52. 
Soon after a frame building was erected on the grounds 
of the old Presbyterian Church on Pennsylvania 
Street, south of the Exchange Block, and the insti- 
tute taken there, where it remained while the Misses 
Axtell lived. These two schools were a great ad- 
vance on those previous to their establishment ; but 
they were not " alone in their glory." In October, 
1847, Gilman Marston, since of national reputation 
as a member of Congress from New Hampshire, a 
general during the civil war, and a Territorial Gov- 
ernor since the war, opened a school in the rooms 
afterwards taken by the Axtells, in connection with 
Mrs. Eliza Richmond. The next summer they re- 
moved to a frame specially built for them on Circle 
Street, near the site of the residence of Mr. W. H. 
English. It was called " Franklin Institute," and 
looked like a country church. Mr. Marston left it 
the following year, 1839, and was succeeded by Or- 
lando Chester, who died in 1840, and then Mr. John 
Wheeler took it and kept for a couple of years, when 
it was abandoned. In November, 1839, Mrs. Britton, 
wife of the Episcopalian minister, opened a female 
seminary on Pennsylvania Street, near the Underbill 
foundry, afterwards removed to the building north of 
Christ Church, and long known as " St. Mary's Semi- 
nary," under Mrs. Johnson, wife of a successor of 
3Ir. Britton in the rectory. 

From 1836, Josephus Cicero Worrall kept what 



THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



119 



he called the " Indianapolis Academy" in the old 
building above referred to. He was a " character," 
and not by any means a pleasant one. He did not 
know much, but he could make polysyllabic poluphlos- 
boyant announcements of the approaching opening 
of his terms that puzzled the little dictionaries of the 
day, and would have delighted the classic ears of 
" Lorenzo Altisonant." They were the periodical 
jokes of the town. His tastes and habits were as 
eccentric as his literature. His fondness for tobacco 
was a ravenous hunger. He tore it off in wads of a 
mouthful, and crunched it with the eagerness of a 
hungry Hoosier at a show on a " quarter section" of 
gingerbread. He smoked as much as he chewed, 
and he smoked while he chewed. When he didn't 
smoke he kept the stub of a cigar in his mouth 
and mumbled it, while he rolled a quid as a sweet 
morsel under his tongue. When he undertook to ex- 
plain some mathematical intricacy to a pupil he would 
spit a shower of damp tobacco flakes on the slate and 
rub them off to one side like snow off a sidewalk. 
He whipped incessantly, with little care for provoca- 
tion, but usually contented himself with a single stroke 
of a beech switch applied to the pupil in her seat, 
face to the wall and back turned out, as the house 
was arranged. He generally made a circuit of the 
three seated sides of the room about four times in each 
session of the day, and whipped about one pupil in three 
in each round. He made the boys saw or chop his 
wood and carry it into his residence, which was a 
little shed adjoining the school-house on the north. 
Some of them were required to lose their Saturday's 
holiday to help him move to a little frame on the 
southeast corner of Delaware and Ohio Streets. The 
girls were made to help his wife take care of the 
baby, or wash, or do other housework. Of course 
everybody, boys and girls, detested him. On Christ- 
mas-day, 1837, they " barred him out," the first and 
only time that this old game was played with a teacher 
in Indianapolis. He was not allowed to get in till he 
" treated," which he did with a half-dollar's worth of 
cider and apples, and got most of both himself His 
school continued in a feeble way after Mr. Kemper 
took the seminary for five or six years. 

Contemporaneously with Mr. Worrall another char- 



acter, that would be called in the apt slang of the day 
and Guiteau a " crank," taught a small school of small 
boys in the lower room of a frame building on the 
opposite side of Market Street from the " Academy." 
His name was Main, and he was a Scotchman of un- 
doubted but utterly unavailable learning. He was as 
fond of snuff as his compeer of the other school was 
of tobacco, and he carried a Scotch " mull," made of 
horn and capped with silver, that would hold a half- 
pint at least. He was very absent-minded, and given 
to sitting with his spectacles dropped low on the tip 
of his nose and gazing away off in the atmosphere, 
as completely lost to his surroundings as if he were 
asleep, or holding his head squeezed between his hands 
with his elbows on the table, staring fixedly at a 
crack or a nail-hole as a mesmeric subject stares at a 
dime to induce sleep. In the.se moods he noticed 
nothing about him. The boys could play marbles, 
or pull pins, or run out-doors and roll round in the 
weeds in perfect safety. If the old fellow should 
come out of his reverie he would notice no disorder, 
and had usually to bo prompted to know what his 
next class was. If he wandered off dreaming while 
hearing a recitation, as he sometimes did, he had to 
be told what the class was and where the recitation 
had stopped when he came to himself. Not unfre- 
quently he would sit through the better of a half- 
day's session and never think of calling a class unless 
reminded by some importunate and preposterous pupil, 
a weakness, however, that very few boys could re- 
proach themselves with. He taught but a single 
quarter, and then removed, with his brother, a tailor 
and his brother-in-law, the first stone-cutter, or one of 
the first, a Mr. Spear, to Arkansas. But very few, 
even of the old residents, ever knew anything of him 
or can now recall him, he was so retiring and indif- 
ferent to company. Of the earlier private schools 
and of the public schools an account will be given in 
the chapter of schools, with a notice of all the educa- 
tional institutions of the city. 

4th. During the short period under consideration 
were established some of those business conveniences 
which in old communities soon become necessities ; 
that is, banks and insurance companies and protection 
against, as well as indemnity for, damage by fire. The 



120 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



State Bank was chartered Jan. 28, 1834, to run for 
twenty-five years. The State took half of the stock, 
and appointed the president and half of the directors. 
Bonds called " bank bonds" were issued to pay out the 
State's stock, and made payable from the State's divi- 
dends. These dividends were to be employed as a 
sinking fund, and make loans to accommodate farmers 
and purchasers of land primarily on mortgage security ; 
the president of tlie bank to be president of the fund 
management. The profits of the fund as well as 
the principal were to be applied first to pay the bank 
bonds, and the remainder was to go to the school fund. 
So judiciously was this fund managed that when it 
was wound up finally some twenty years ago it paid 
to the support of free schools a permanent fund of 
nearly four million dollars. The first president of 
the bank and fund was Samuel Merrill, State treas- 
urer ; the first State directors, Calvin Fletcher, Seton 
W. Norris, Robert Morrison, and Thomas H. Scott. 
James M. Ray was appointed cashier, and remained 
so till the bank was wound up. In the first place ten 
branches were created in the principal towns of the 
State, but the number was finally increased to sixteen. 
Samuel Merrill was president till 1840, when he was 
made president of the Madison Railroad. He was 
succeeded by Judge James Morrison till 1850, he 
by the late Gen. Ebenezer Dumont till 1855, and 
he by Hugh McCulloch, Secretary of the Treasury, 
succeeding Mr. Fessenden. W. H. Talbott was 
president of the sinking fund in its last years while 
closing up, about 1863 to 1864. The first location 
of the mother-bank was in the Governor's house in 
the Circle, then on Washington Street, and was re- 
moved to its own building, corner of Illinois Street 
and Kentucky Avenue, in 1840. In 1837, when the 
great financial crash came, the bank and all its 
branches suspended specie payment May 18th, and 
remained suspended till Jan. 15, 1842, when the 
Legislature ordered resumption. This course did not 
impair either the credit or usefulness of the institu- 
tion. 

The Indianapolis Branch was organized Nov. 11, 
1834, with Hervey Bates, president, and Bethuel F. 
Morris, cashier. The location was on the south side 
of Washington Street, on the site of the present 



Vance Block. The oflBcers and location were retained 
together till 1840, when the building corner of 
Pennsylvania Street and Virginia Avenue, corre- 
sponding in situation to the parent bank, was finished 
and the institution removed there. Some years after 
Calvin Fletcher was made president in place of Mr. 
Bates, and Thomas H. Sharpe cashier in place of Mr. 
Morris, and these remained till the bank was wound 
up. Of the Bank of the State, the successor of the 
State Bank, but with no State interest in it, an ac- 
count will be found under the head of " Banks," with 
a notice of all the banking establishments of the city. 
In this connection may be noticed the first private 
bank ever opened here. It was owned by Mr. John 
Wood, one of the firm in the Pennsylvania Street 
foundry, and began business in 1838. He failed in 
September, 1841. In 1839, Edward S. Alvord & 
Co. did a private banking business for four or five 
years. At the same time Stoughton A. Fletcher, 
brother of Calvin, began the same business, either at 
first or soon after joined by William D. Wygant, on 
Washington Street, and that was the beginning of a 
most successful business, now in its forty-fourth year, 
as Fletcher & Churchman's bank. 

The first insurance company was organized here 
March 16, 1836, under a fifty-year charter, with a cap- 
ital of two hundred thousand dollars. Douglass Ma- 
guire was president, and Caleb Scudder secretary. It 
never did much, but was in operation till shortly before 
the outbreak of the war. In 1865 the stock passed 
into the hands of able managers and a new company 
was organized, with William Henderson as president, 
and Alexander C. Jameson as secretary. The Indi- 
ana Mutual Fire Insurance Company was chartered 
Jan. 30, 1837, and organized the next month, with 
James Blake as president, and Charles W. Cady as 
secretary and actuary and general manager. It did 
well for a few years, but the plan was said to be inef- 
fectively contrived, and it met some serious losses and 
became insolvent, going out altogether about the year 
1850. 

On the completion of the State-House in 1835, the 
Legislature provided for its protection from fire by 
ordering its insurance and the purchase of twenty 
leather fire-buckets, and ladders long enough to reach 



THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



121 



the roof. It also proposed to pay half of the cost of 
a fire-engine if the citizens would subscribe the other 
h;ilf. A meeting was held February 12th to consider 
the proposition. The old fire company of 1827 reor- 
ganized as the Marion Fire Hose and Protection Com- 
pany, famous for many a year after the '' Old Marion,"' 
and the main dependence of the volunteer department 
for more than twenty years. Caleb Scudder was the 
first captain. The meeting requested the trustees to 
levy a tax to pay the town's share of the cost of the 
engine, and it was done, aided by individual subscrip- 
tions, and the Marion end-brake hand-engine, manned 
by twenty-eight to thirty men, and able to throw an 
inch stream two hundred feet, was bought of Merrick 
& Co., Philadelphia, for one thousand eight hundred 
dollars. The State built a little one-story house for it 
in 18.36, but in 1837 the town built a two-story frame 
north side of the Circle, with a room for the Council 
on the second story. It was burned in 1851. The 
company was incorporated the next year. A second 
company was formed in 18-10, but an account of the 
whole fire department from the first will be found 
under that caption. Five fire-wells were made in 
1835-36. 

The State militia system, as already described, fell 
into disuse and discredit soon after the settlement of 
the town, and no substitute was attempted by State or 
local or individual influence till 1837. Then a meet- 
ing was held on the 22d of February to form a mili- 
tary company. Alexander W. Russell, the old militia 
colonel, was made captain, and succeeded the next 
year by Gen. Thomas A. Morris, then but a few years 
out of West Point. He distinguished himself in the 
first campaign of the civil war in West Virginia by 
really doing all the planning and work that made that 
so brilliant a success. Gen. McClellan was still in the 
East, and arrived just in time to see the completion 
of Gen. Morris' work, and appropriate all the credit 
of it. This company continued to drill and parade 
and decorate public occasions by its excellent drill and 
handsome gray uniform faced with black velvet till 
1845. The company was incorporated in 1838. The 
following year the Marion Rifles formed a company 
under Capt. Thomas McBaker. Their uniform was 
a blue cotton "hunting-shirt" fringed, with blue 



breeches, and they were armed with the clumsiest 
breech-loading rifles that were ever invented. 

A notable event of this period was the completion 
and opening of what may be fairly called the first 
"hotel" in the place, in 1836, the "Washington 
Hall," turned into the " Glenn Block" and New 
York Store in 1859. It was kept for many years by 
the late Edmund Browning, and was the Whig head- 
quarters as long as there was a Whig party, as the 
Palmer House was the headquarters of the Dem- 
ocracy. A complete account of the hotels will be 
found in another part of the work. The Palmer 
House, now Occidental, it may be observed here, was 
begun in the latter part of 1839, and opened in 18-11 
by John C. Parker, of Charleston, Clarke Co., Ind. 
The first editorial convention was held here May 29, 
1837. The first ladies' fair was held December 31st 
of the year for the benefit of the Ladies' Missionary 
Society, and made two hundred and thirty dollars. 
Professor C. P. Bronson, the first noted elocutionist 
that visited Central Indiana, lectured Aug. 30, 1836. 
At the second meeting of the County Agricultural So- 
ciety, Calvin Fletcher, the orator of the occasion, said 
that one million three hundred thousand bushels of 
corn had been produced on thirteen hundred farms in 
the county. Luke Munsell and William Sullivan both 
published maps of the town in 1836, the former May 
30th, and the latter in October. Revs. James Havens 
and John C. Smith held a great camp-meeting that 
year on the Military Ground, August 25th to 30th, 
and made one hundred and thirty conversions. In 
1837, while the metaling of the National road in 
Washington Street was going on, the trustees took 
measures to improve the sidewalks. They were made 
fifteen feet wide in the original plan, but were subse- 
quently widened to twenty, and the ninety-feet street- 
walks were originally changed from ten to twelve, and 
later to fifteen. The property-holders resisted the 
changes because it increased the expense of improve- 
ment, which was charged against the property. This 
was the first street improving ever attempted. The 
first clothing-store was opened here in 1838 by Ben- 
jamin Orr. In 1839 a mistake of eight acres was 
discovered in the original survey of the donation. 
Congress generously added the ground to the donation 



122 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



in 1840, on the memorial of the Legislature. The 
first Thanksgiving ever held in the State was in 1839, 
.on a proclamation of Governor Wallace fixing Thurs- 
day, the 28th of November, as the day. The winter 
of 1838-39 saw the first attempt at a regular the- 
atrical exhibition with orchestra, scenery, and all the 
usual adjuncts of the stage. The manager was a Mr. 
Lindsay. His theatre was the wagon-shop of Mr. 
Ollaman, on Washington Street, opposite the court- 
house. He returned in 1840-41, and made a theatre 
of an old printing-ofBce on the present site of the 
News building. A few years later another company 
gave concerts and dramatic exhibitions in the upper 
room of Gaston's carriage- factory, site of the Bates 
House. 

On the 12th of February, 1839, the Legislature 
ordered the State officers to buy the residence, re- 
cently finished, of Dr. John H. Sanders, corner of 
Illinois and Market Streets, for a residence for the 
Governor. Until that time the need of an official 
Executive residence had not been felt. Governor 
Noble, the predecessor of Governor Wallace, was a 
resident of the town, and lived during his two terms 
in his own house. So did Governor Ray, who, as 
acting Governor for a year succeeding iu the fraction 
of the term of Governor Hendricks, who had gone 
to the National Senate, and for two terms, or six 
years, as regularly elected Executive, held the office 
nearly all the time after the removal of the capital 
from Corydon. But Governor Wallace came from 
Brookville, had no residence here, and for some time 
lived in a two-story house on the south side of Wash- 
ington Street, just west of the canal. The Executive 
mansion was occupied all the time from 1839 till 
1863, in the fall, when Governor Morton abandoned 
it on account of its unhealthiness, and went to board- 
ing with his family till he made a purchase of the 
residence on the southeast corner of Pennsylvania and 
New York Streets, where he lived the remainder of 
his life, and died in the fall of 1877. The Governors 
all suffered in that house. Governor Bigger, who 
succeeded Governor Wallace, seems to have contracted 
there the disease that carried him ofi' soon after he 
left the office. Governor Whitcomb, who married 
while occupying the house, lost his young wife there. 



Governor Wright lost his first wife there. Governor 
Willard's wife was always ill while there. Governor 
Lane only held the office two or three days, and never 
had a chance to test the morbific influence of the 
house, but Governor Morton did and left. It and 
the quarter of a square, or one acre, of ground about • 
were sold in 1865, and compact masses of business 
houses cover the whole space. 

In May, 1838, the split that had for some time 
been moving deeper into the Presbyterian brotherhood 
reached Indianapolis and a division was made, fifteen 
members withdrawing and forming the Second Church, 
Nov. 19, 1838, under Rev. J. H. Johnson. In May, 
1839, Henry Ward Beecher was called from Lawrence- 
burg, where he began his now famous ministry, and 
served here till Sept. 19, 1847. The Episcopalians, 
who had been using the court-house for a church 
since 1835 occasionally, organized a church in the 
spring of 1837, and built Christ Church the next 
year. A sketch of the history of all the churches 
will treat these more fully. 

The first murders in the town took place in the 
seven years of this period which have been under 
consideration. On the 8th of May, Michael Van 
Blaricum drowned William McPherson while ferrying 
him across the river, just below the line of the present 
Washington Street bridge, by wilfully rocking and 
upsetting the boat. His motive appears to have been 
a sort of contemptuous dislike of his victim, whom 
he regarded as what in these days is called a " dude," 
and probably meant no worse than to duck him and 
spoil his clothes. He asserted that he intended no 
more. But he was convicted and sent to the peniten- 
tiary for three years in October, 1834. He was par- 
doned when his time was about half out. He was the 
ferryman of the ferry at that point. The second 
murder was bloodier and less excusable. It was 
committed April 27, 1836, by Arnold Lashley on 
Zachariah Collins. Lashley was a coach-maker, who 
had succeeded the Johnsons in the establishment on 
the site now occupied by the post-office and the busi- 
ness houses north of it on the east side of Pennsyl- 
vania Street, a Kentuckian and a hot-tempered fellow. 
Collins was a charcoal-burner who supplied Lashley's 
establishment. On the day of the homicide he had 



THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



123 



brought in a wagon-load of coal, and was unloading 
it in the usual place, when Lashley complained that 
the coal was dirty, and ordered him to stop unloading 
it. Collins seems to have been as surly as Lashley 
was fiery, and went coolly on with his work ; after a 
few words more of remonstrance, Lashley seized a 
single-tree lying on the floor and struck Collins on 
the head or neck, killing him instantly. He was 
arrested, and after a preliminary examination held to 
bail. While under bail he ran away and was never 
seen or heard of here again. Not long after this an 
Indianapolis or Marion County man of the name of 
McDowell had a quarrel with some one at a race in 
Hamilton County, and killed him by a blow that 
broke his neck. 

In 1838-39 a market-house was built for the 
western part of the town on the west side of Ten- 
nessee Street at the crossing of Ohio. Ephraim Cole- 
/Stock was paid three thousand eight hundred and fifty 
dollars for it, and for making an addition to the East 
Market. The new house was not used at all for four or 
five years, and never was used like the old one, though 
a larger and every way better house. The south end 
of the same square (held by the State) was occupied 
by the Arsenal during the war. When the State de- 
cided to build a new State-House, the city surrendered 
the market-house and vacated Market Street, thus 
giving the State-House two unbroken squares, with 
the intervening street making nearly nine acres. 

The last division of the second period of the city's 
history is that extending from the abandonment of 
the public works to the completion of the first rail- 
road and the organization of the town under a city 
charter in 1847. Its leading features are : 1st, The 
establishment of the State benevolent institutions or 
asylums, or the adoption of measures with that object, 
in 1843 and the two or three succeeding years ; 
2d, Political events and excitements ; 3d, Incidents 
wholly local and not important, but worth attention 
as marks of a development ; 4th, Religious move- 
ments. 

1st. The Legislature, having been repeatedly so- 
licited by petitions and memorials to make some 
provision for the insane, deaf and dumb, and blind 
of the State, in 1839 addressed Congress on the 



subject of a grant to assist in making such a pro- 
vision. This was never done, and there was no good 
reason why it should have been done or should have 
been asked. On the 31st of January, 1842, Gover- 
nor Bigger was ordered by the Legislature to corre- 
spond with the Governors of other States and the 
officers of like institutions and ascertain the cost and 
modes of construction and management of insane 
hospitals, and on the 13th of February, 1843, was 
ordered to obtain plans to be submitted to the next 
Legislature. This was done, with the effect of se- 
curing a tax of one cent on one hundred dollars to 
create a "building fund for an insane hospital here. 
This was the 15th of January, 1844. On the 13th 
of January, 1845, Dr. John Evans, Dr. L. Dunlap, 
and James Blake were appointed commissioners to 
select a site of not exceeding two hundred acres. 
They chose Mount Jackson, then the home of the 
Indiana poetess, Mrs. Sarah T. Bolton, and her hus- 
band, the first editor in Indianapolis or the New Pur- 
chase. They reported the selection with a building 
plan to the Legislature the following session of 1845- 
46, and on the 19th of January, 1846, they were 
ordered to begin work on the building, and to sell 
Hospital Square 22, and apply the proceeds, with 
fifteen thousand dollars from the State treasury, to 
the work. The central building was begun the same 
year and finished in 1847, at a cost of seventy-five 
thousand dollars. The south wing was added in 
1853-56, and the north wing in 1866-69. A great 
many minor changes and additions have been made at 
one time or another. The frontage is six hundred 
and twenty-four feet. The centre building is five 
stories high, including a basement and top half-story. 
A belvidere on the centre building is one hundred 
and three feet above the ground. The wings are three 
and four stories high. The third floor of the build- 
ing in the rear of the centre is used as a chapel, 
with a seating capacity of three hundred. The other 
two stories are used by the employes as kitchen and 
dining-room, steward's office, sewing-rooms, and the 
like. In the rear of this building is the engine 
building, with pumps and heating pipes and other 
necessary apparatus. A sewage system discharges 
into Eagle Creek. Water is supplied by a system of 



124 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



water-works on the Holly plan, like that of the city, 
with ample protection by fire-plugs and hose against 
fire. The whole structure is lighted with gas. It 
can accommodate six hundred or more patients at a 
time, with the necessary attendants. The superin- 
dents have been, in order of succession, Dr. John 
Evans, Dr. R. J. Patterson, Dr. James S. Athon, 
Dr. James H. Woodburn, Dr. Wilson Lockhart, Dr. 
Orpheus Everts, Dr. Rogers, and Dr. William B. 
Fletcher. The last has very recently introduced the 
system of intelligent restraint and kind treatment 
in place of manacles and strait-waistcoats, with, so 
far, decided success. A few years ago the Legisla- 
ture concluded to make additional provision for the 
insane, who could not be accommodated in the old 
building, and ordered a new one, directly north of the 
old one, on a plan furnished by the late Edwin M.ay, 
architect of the new State-House. It was two or 
three years in building, and has but recently been 
finished. It is used mainly or wholly for female pa- 
tients, and will accommodate suitably some seven 
or eight hundred. The frontage is about eleven 
hundred feet, with a centre building and three wings 
on each side of it, each one retiring some feet back 
from the line of the other, making the front a series 
of steps. It is nearly three hundred feet through 
the centre to the line joining the rear of the extreme 
wings. Within the year sites have been selected by 
commissioners for asylums for the incurably insane, 
for whom hitherto no provision has been made, though 
warmly urged by Governor Baker ten years ago. 
There are to be five of them, located at different suit- 
able points in the State. The sites selected are Fort 
Wayne, Evansville, Richmond, Terre Haute, and La- 
fayette. At present, and ever since the asylum has 
been open, patients found to be incurable have been 
returned to their friends to make room for curable 
patients. In 1857, in consequence of the failure of 
appropriations in a party quarrel in the State Sen- 
ate, the asylums were all closed and the inmates re- 
turned to their homes. The insane in some cases 
were put in poor-houses. In others the counties 
made arrangements to pay for their care in the State 
institution here. This paralysis continued for four 
or five months, and then Governor Willard concluded 



to borrow money and reopen the institutions, but it 
was some time before they fully recovered from the 
blow. 

On the 13th of February, 1843, the Legislature 
levied a tax of one-fifth of a cent on one hundred dol- 
lars, for a fund to establish an asylum for deaf mutes. 
In the spring following William Willard, a deaf 
mute teacher in the Ohio institution, came here and 
opened a private school for similar sufferers in Octo- 
ber, receiving sixteen pupils the first year. On the 
15th of January, 1844, the Legislature made the 
school a State institution, and Governor Whitcomb, 
Secretary of State William Sheets, Treasurer of 
State George H. Dunn, Rev. Phineas D. Gurley, 
Rev. Henry Ward Beecher, Rev. Love H. Jameson, 
Judge James Morrison, Dr. L. Dunlap, and Rev. 
Matthew Simpson were appointed trustees, with 
authority to rent a room and employ necessary 
teachers. They rented the residence, a large two-^ 
story frame, recently erected by Dr. George W. Stipp, 
on the southeast corner of Maryland and Illinois 
Streets. The State Asylum or school was opened 
here Oct. 1, 1844, one year after the opening of Mr. 
Willard's private school. In 1845 the Governor by 
authority appointed a new board of trustees, but con- 
tinued most of the old members on it. In 1846 the 
school was removed to the three-story brick Kinder 
building on the south side of Washington Street near 
Delaware, and remained there four years, till the 
completion of the asylum building at the corner of 
Washington Street and State Avenue, in October, 
1850. This site was selected in 1846, the trustees 
making a purchase of thirty acres for the necessary 
grounds. The building was erected in 1848-49, at 
a cost of thirty thousand dollars. Additions have 
since been made to it and to the ground, so that the 
latter now contains one hundred and five acres, and 
the aggregate cost of the former has been about 
two hundred and twenty thousand dollars. The 
grounds are beautifully ornamented with forest and 
other shade-trees and various kinds of flowers and 
shrubbery, with winding walks and drives and a con- 
servatory, besides playgrounds and an orchard and 
vegetable garden. The larger portion is used for 
pasture and farm ground. Mr. Willard was superin- 



THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



125 



tendent till 1845, then James S. Brown was 
appointed, and served till 1853, when he was suc- 
ceeded by Thomas Molntyre, who was retired under 
a change of system and management about three 
years ago. The number of pupils varies from year 
to year, but will run from two hundred and fifty 
to three hundred usually. Successful efi"orts have 
recently been made to teach articulate speech by 
motion of the lips. 

In 1844-45, during the session of the Legislature, 
some of the pupils of the Kentucky Blind Asylum 
came here, under charge of the late William H. 
Churchman, and gave exhibitions at Bcecher's church, 
which the legislators attended largely, and seemed 
deeply interested in one of them. Mr. Dirk Rous- 
seau, senator from Greene, and brother of the late 
Gen. Lovell H. Rousseau, proposed an arithmetical 
problem for one of the blind boys to solve by mental 
process, and not making it very clear in his oval state- 
ment he wrote it out, took it up to the pulpit, and 
carefully held it before the sightless eyes, reading it 
slowly, and tracing every line with his finger. For a 
moment the absurdity of the thing did not strike the 
audience, and then it all came at once in a roar that 
shook the house, and that first wakened the senator's 
attention. He blushed, laughed, and came down to 
his seat. The Legislature was fully satisfied with the 
evidence afl'orded by this exhibition, and levied a two- 
mill tax to establish a blind asylum. The Secretary of 
State, John H. Thompson, Auditor Horatio J. Harris, 
Treasurer Royal Mayhew, with James M. Ray and 
Dr. G. W. Mears, were made commissioners at the 
following session to apply the two-mill fund, either 
in approving a school here or maintaining the State's 
pupils at the Ohio or Kentucky institutions. Mr. 
Churchman was appointed to address the people of 
the State on the subject, and ascertain the number 
of blind requiring public assistance in acquiring an 
education. On the 27th of January, 1847, Dr. 
George W. Mears, Calvin Fletcher, and James M. 
Ray were appointed commissioners to provide the 
necessary buildings and make arrangements for a 
school here, with an appropriation of five thousand 
dollars for a site and furniture and other necessaries. 
Seton W. Norris replaced Mr. Fletcher, who declined. 



and the school was opened Oct. 1, 1847, in the same 
building that the Deaf and Dumb School first occupied, 
southeast corner of Maryland and Illinois Streets. 
Nine pupils attended at first, but there were thirty 
during the session. In September, 1848, a removal 
was made to a three-story brick, erected for a work- 
shop, on the asylum grounds, — the two squares north 
of North Street, between Pennsylvania and Meridian 
Streets, formerly " Pratt's Walnut Grove." Here 
the school was kept till the completion of the asylum 
proper in February, 1853. It was begun about three 
years before. The cost of the original building and 
grounds was one hundred and ten thousand dollars. 
The main central building is ninety feet front by 
sixty -one feet deep, and five stories high ; at each 
end is a wing four stories high, thirty feet front by 
eighty-three feet deep. The total front from east to 
west is one hundred and fifty feet. A Corinthian 
cupola crowns the centre building. A portico stands 
in front of the centre, and iron galleries or colonnades 
surround the two lower stories of the wings. The 
average attendance of pupils is over one hundred, a 
considerable majority of whom are usually females. 
The superintendents have been William H. Church- 
man, from Oct. 1, 1847, to Sept. 30, 1853; George 
W. Ames, brother of the bishop, from Oct. 1, 1853, 
to Sept. 30, 1855 ; William C. Larrabee, previously 
a professor at Asbury University, and afterwards 
editor of the Sentinel for a short time, from Oct. 1, 
1855, to Jan. 31, 1857 ; James McWorkman, from 
Feb. 1, 1857, to Sept. 10, 1861 ; William H. Church- 
man again, from Oct. 10, 1861. 

The Female Prison and Reformatory, a short dis- 
tance northeast of the Deaf and Dumb Asylum, was 
recommended in the message of Governor Baker in 
1869, and an appropriation of fifty thousand dollars 
made for it, under the management of a board con- 
sisting of Judge Elijah B. Martindale, of the city, 
Gen. Asahel Stone, of Winchester, and Joseph I. 
Irwin, of Columbus. They obtained a plan of Mr. 
Hodgson, architect of the court-house, and went on 
with the work as far as they could with the money. 
The failure of appropriations in 1871 delayed and 
greatly embarrassed the Board, and the institution 
was not ready for the reception of subjects as early as 



126 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



it should have been by two or three years. It has 
now been in successful operation some eight years, 
under the charge of Mrs. Sarah Smith, and has 
realized all the reasonable expectations formed of its 
service. A good deal of trouble has been caused by 
the sewage of so large a house with so many inmates, 
but the last Legislature made an arrangement with 
the city to assist in building a sewer to connect with 
the city system, which will remove all ground of com- 
plaint. The Reformatory is one hundred and seventy- 
four feet long, consisting of a main central building, 
with side and traverse wings, one hundred and nine 
feet long. The whole structure is two stories high, 
with a basement and Mansard story. The completed 
portion is but a fraction of the whole contemplated 
structure, which is to be five hundred and twenty-five 
feet long. The character and purpose of the institu- 
tion may be best judged from the definition of them 
in the act creating it, drawn by Governor Baker. A 
" House of Refuge for the Correction and Reforma- 
tion of Juvenile Ofienders" was provided for by an 
act of the Legislature approved March 8, 1867, with 
an appropriation of fifty thousand dollars and a board 
of managers consisting of Charles F. Coffin, of Wayne 
County, Judge A. C. Downey, of Ohio County, and 
Gen. Joseph Orr, of La Porte County. The " family 
system" of treatment was adopted under the superin- 
tendence of Frank B. Ainsworth and his wife, who 
began their service Aug. 27, 1867. On the 1st of 
January, 1868, a workshop and three residences were 
completed, and the Governor issued a proclamation 
that the institution was ready to receive inmates. 
The grounds contain two hundred and twenty-five 
acres, a half-mile or so south of Plainfield, Hendricks 
Co. The number of inmates is about two hundred 
usually. The institution is noticed here, though not 
in the county, because it forms part of the same system 
as the Female Reformatory, and it was really drawn 
to a central location by the capital. 

2d. Until the fall of 1840 no man of national dis- 
tinction had visited Indianapolis. Gen. Harrison was 
here for a week in January, 1833, came on the 11th, 
was banqueted and made a speech on the 17th, and 
came again on the 13th of January, 1835 ; but at that 
time Gen. Harrison was little known outside of the 



" Northwest Territory," which was so largely indebted 
to his courage and judgment, and it would be strain- 
ing terms a little to speak of him as a man of 
" national reputation." In those days of slow com- 
munication and of newspapers that troubled them- 
selves little with news, what was known in one sec- 
tion was not quite so readily diffused in others as now, 
when a night incident on the Pacific is known all 
along the Atlantic on both sides the next morning at 
breakfast. The nomination at Harrisburg in Decem- 
ber, 1839, was a revelation to a good many well- 
informed men east of the AUeghanies. For a number 
of years the general had been clerk of Hamilton 
County, withdrawn from public sight and interest, and 
that seclusion had helped to make his an unfamiliar 
name even at home among the generation that had 
grown up since the days of Tippecanoe and Tecum- 
seh. Thus it came that Indianapolis was all in a fer- 
ment on the 13th of October, 1840, to see the Vice- 
President of the United States and the reputed slayer 
of the great Indian chief, the statesman. Col. Richard 
M. Johnson. He passed the night of the 13th at 
a tavern a few miles east of town, Aquiila Parker's 
probably, and came in next morning at the head of 
a long procession which had gone out two or three 
miles to meet him. He was taken to the Walnut 
Grove, on the square north of the site of the Blind 
Asylum, and made a very indifferent little speech, in 
which occurred two exhibitions of indifferent taste, 
short as it was. Something required an allusion to 
the preceding Sunday and something he had done 
that day, and he said he had no scruples about doing 
necessary work on Sunday, adding by way of humor- 
ous enlargement that he " had written his Sunday 
mail report on Sunday." This was a report on a series 
of petitions from over-zealous religionists asking the 
suppression of the transportation and distribution of 
the mails on Sunday, made in 1828 and so well con- 
structed that a good many believed somebody else 
wrote it. Whether true or not, it was impertinent and 
sure to be offensive to the religious element of the 
population to say it was a Sunday job. In reference 
to his public services he said he had " that morning at 
the tavern stripped to the buff and showed a friend 
who shared the room, the scars of five wounds re- 



THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



127 



ceived at the battle of the Thames." As he was on 
an electioneering tour, and within a month of the 
election, there was a rather unpleasant savor of Roman 
mode of electioneering in this public parade of his 
wounds to solicit votes. He was a better fighter than 
statesman. Tilghman A. Howard, who had been 
beaten for Governor the August before, made the 
speech of that occasion. 

On the 11th of June, 1842, ex-President Van 
Buren came here, and was received, like Col. John- 
son, by a procession of military companies, firemen, 
citizens on foot and horseback and in wagons and 
carriages, with the music of the first brass band, and 
taken to the Palmer House, where he was welcomed 
in a formal speeeh, and responded, standing in the 
open carriage, in a very neat and graceful little ex- 
pression of gratitude and the usual civilities of such 
occasions. He had a reception at the State-House, 
by request of Governor Bigger, in the evening. The 
next day being Sunday, he attended Beecher's church 
in the morning and the Methodist in the evening, and 
left on Monday by stage for Terre Haute, getting an 
upset at Plainfield, it was said at the time. 

Henry Clay, about whom a greater curiosity, and 
for whom, in consequence of the strength of the Ken- 
tucky settlers, a greater admiration was felt than for 
any other man in the nation, came here on the 5th of 
October, 18-12. He was received east of the town by 
a greater crowd than was ever assembled here before, 
and, says Mr. Ignatius Brown, " considering the 
means of travel then and since, a greater crowd than 
has ever been gathered since." A fine woods pasture 
belonging to Governor Noble, east of his residence, 
was the place of ceremonies, which consisted of 
speeches and a profuse " lunch" it would be called 
now, but wa.s called a "barbecue" then. There were 
two or three speaking-stands, but none but his own 
were used while Mr. Clay was speaking. He spoke 
for more than an hour, and certainly did not surpass 
anybody's expectations. There was no occasion for 
feeling or enthusiasm in a formal speech of response 
to a popular reception, and there was none on his side 
and none due to his eloquence on the other. He was 
followed by Senator John J. Crittenden and Governor 
Thomas Metcalf, " the Old Stone Hammer," who both 



made better speeches than their chief. They were 

followed by Joseph Little White, a member of Con- 
gress from the Madison District of this State, and he 
made the best speech of the day. He was capable of 
doing it at any time, except when Mr. Clay was fully 
roused. He was a born orator, like Sargent S. Pren- 
tiss, whom he greatly resembled in intellectual readi- 
ness and affluence. Other speeches were made by 
home orators, but they have passed away with the 
occasion and are forty years deep in oblivion now. 
The entertainment continued for two days longer, in 
which a review of the military companies was held 
by the Governor, a display of fire-works made, an agri- 
cultural show visited, and, it was said, a three-mile 
race witnessed between " Bertrand" and " Little Red" 
on the first race-course ever opened here. It was 
maintained but a few years, three or four from 1841, 
and was situated on the south side of the Crawfords- 
ville road, about a mile west of the river. 

On the 5th of August, 1844, Gen. Cass visited the 
town, and was received like his distinguished prede- 
cessors, though with hardly so large a display of pop- 
ular interest, and was escorted by the procession to 
the Military Ground, where Governor Whitcomb 
made a welcoming address, and the general re.sponded 
at considerable length. A Presidential contest was at 
its height, and he made a strong and long electioneer- 
ing speech, followed by Senator Edward A. Hannegan 
and others. He held a reception at the Palmer House, 
and left in the evening for Dayton. 

The great Presidential contest of 1840 excited no 
more feeling in any town in the Union than in Indian- 
apolis. Local meetings and mass-meetings, speeches, 
Tippecanoe songs. Whig emblems, "log cabin" breast- 
pins, little canoes, — the significance of which must be 
traced through the final syllables of an Indian name 
that had no relevancy to causes, — ostentatious parade 
of cider-barrels, and imitations of " latch-strings," 
and scores of varied forms of enthusiasm that every- 
body felt to be silly when the fever was gone, kept 
the whole community in an incessant turmoil for 
nearly a year. Processions in weather so cold that 
enthusiastic Whigs froze their ears by keeping their 
hats waving to their " hurrahs" too long, great " dug- 
out" canoes filled with young ladies and little flags, 



128 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



imitation cabins drawn on big ox-wagons, enormous 
choruses to very silly songs were the leading features 
of the Whig side of the contest. On the corner 
where the Bates House stands, a cabin of buckeye 
loCTg — a compliment to Gen. Harrison's Ohio residence 
— was built, and barrels of cider kept constantly run- 
ning when there was a Whig meeting in the town. 
One of the Whig songs, and the most popular, because, 
like the lion's part in the " Midsummer Night's 
Dream," it " was nothing but roaring," and capable 
of employing all the strength of all the lungs within 
the radius of a half mile, began thus : 

" What has caused this great commotion, motion, motion. 
The country through? 
It is the ball a rolling on for Tippecanoe and Tyler too, 
And with them we'll beat little Van. 
Van, Van is a used up man, 
And with them we'll beat little Von !" 

It makes one feel cheap to think that such rubbish 
as that could have any effect on the opinions or action 
of a great nation, but it had. " Lillibullero" was not 
better, and it helped James II. ofF the throne, so 
our folly of 1840 was not singular. On the Demo- 
cratic side the contest was managed in a much more 
decorous way. They could not help it, for they had 
nothing in their cause or candidate to excite enthu- 
siasm, and, in the expressive slang of to-day, the 
Whigs had "got the bulge." The Democrats had 
too many sins of a long period of power to answer for. 
Centre township gave thirteen hundred and eighty- 
seven votes in the Presidential election in November, 
and Harrison got eight hundred and seventy-two to 
five hundred and fifteen for Van Buren. The popu- 
lation of the town in 1840 by the census was two 
thousand six hundred and uinety-two. 

The contest of 1844 was not so one-sided. The 
Democrats did quite as much fooling as the Whigs. 
They raised hickory-poles and the Whigs raised ash- 
poles, a suggestion of Mr. Clay's home at Ashland, 
about as apt and significant as the canoe of 1840. 
Both sides had singing clubs, and sang the silliest of 
rhyming rant to the most monotonous of " nigger" 
tunes, then in the first full tide of popularity. " Old 
Dan Tucker," "Lucy Long," '-The Blue-Tailed Fly," 
" Buifalo Gals" were the favorite airs of both sides. 



The Whigs for some reason made the " coon" a party 
symbol, but what it symbolized nobody appeared to 
know. It was paraded numerously in processions and 
mass-meetings, and Whigs often alluded to themselves 
as "coons," and spoke of the thieving little beast with 
afi'ectionate rapture. One of their songs expressed 
this preposterous sentiment : 

" In Lindenwald the fox is holed. 
The coons all laugh to hear it told. 
With ha! ha! ha! what a nominee 
Is James K. Polk, of Tennessee!" 

Van Buren's " pet name'' was the " fox" in 1840, 
and Lindenwald was his home. But out of aj\ this 
fuss and flummery there never came any intelligible 
reason for the adoption of the coon as a party symbol 
or suggestion. The Democrats ought to have balanced 
the case by adopting the " possum," but they did not. 
In 1840 the Democratic ladies made little show in the 
parades, while the Whig ladies were active and con- 
stant in all that could help their friends. In 1844 
the female part of the contest was very evenly bal- 
anced. That was the last of the roaring, singing, 
pole-raising, political folly. The annexation of Texas, 
the Mexican war, and the growing prominence of the 
slavery problem made issues too serious for empty or 
ribald songs and the puerile agencies that had served 
their turn and needed to be forgotten. 

3d. There may be grouped here a number of little 
items of city progress of no special importance in 
themselves, but worth notice, as first things always 
are, if they grow to importance later. In the spring 
of 1840 the Council made two fire cisterns, the first 
of the kind. In July, 1842, T. W. Whitridge, who 
subsequently became quite a distinguished artist in 
New York, opened the first daguorrean gallery here, 
but afterwards betook almost exclusively to painting. 
At this time and before, Jacob Cox, the oldest and 
most eminent artist in the State, was painting por- 
traits occasionally while working at his trade as a 
tinner. During the fall of 1842, James Blake, 
always foremost in enterprise, or only mated by 
Nicholas McCarty, began the manufacture of molas- 
ses from the juice of corn-stalks, a prophecy of the 
later sorghum manufacture which he lived to see. 
The enterprise failed soon, because the product was 



THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



129 



tinged with an acid taste that seriously impaired it. 
Still, a good many used it while they could get it 
because it was cheap. The manufactory was near 
Mr. Blake's barn, on North Street, between Mis- 
sis.sippi and the canal, or in that vicinity. The 
Indiana Horticultural Society was organized Aug. 
22, 1840, Henry Ward Beecher being one of its 
leading promoters. It gave several fine exhibitions 
of fruits and flowers during the half-dozen years 
of its existence. On the 10th of April, 1841, a 
public meeting was held to make arrangements for 
appropriate services on the occasion of President 
Harrison's death, and on the 17th business was 
suspended, an imposing funeral procession formed, 
and addresses delivered by Governor Bigger and 
Mr. Beecher. The 4th of May was observed as a 
fast-day all over the country for the President's 
death. On the 25th of April, 1842, at two o'clock 
in the morning, a loud explosion was heard in the gro- 
cery of Frederick Smith, a little one-story frame on 
the south side of Washington Street, near Delaware. 
Those who heard it and hurried in found him lying 
in a heap of laths and lime, and shattered plank, 
and fragments of grocery-goods, terribly burned and 
bruised and unconscious, but not dead. He was left 
so for some hours till the coroner came. He after- 
wards recovered and left the place. On a fragment 
of plank or the lid of a goods-box he had scrawled 
in German with chalk an unintelliuible account of 
his reasons for his suicidal attempt, but the only 
decipherable words were " envy of bread." He was 
thought to have been partially insane, and to have 
tried to go out of the world in the blaze of an 
exploding keg of powder. Why he didn't was a 
mystery. This was said at the time to be the first 
suicidal attempt in the town. Not far from the 
same time a man by the name of Ellis committed 
suicide by hanging himself in his barn in Wash- 
ington township. The Smith explosion, however, 
was not the first case of suicidal mania. Some years 
before it a boy by the name of Alexander Wiley, a 
brother of W^illiam Y. Wiley, long a prominent and 
respected citizen, drowned himself in the river some- 
where below the bridge, for some difference with his 
father, Capt. Wylie, then a popular tailor on Wash- 



ington Street; at least that was the universal belief 
at the time. The body was found a week afterward.? 
in a drift a few miles down the river, terribly muti- 
lated by fish or carrion-birds. The annual Methodist 
Conference met here Oct. 21, 1840, with Bishop 
Soule as presiding officer. During the fall of 1842 
lecturers on mesmerism excited a good deal of inter- 
est and had a good many believers. 

In February, 1843, " Washington Hall" took fire, 
about two o'clock in the afternoon, and was fought 
zealously all day, and barely extinguished and safe 
at dusk. The engines had to be supplied with water 
by lines of buckets from pumps at the corner of 
Meridian Street, and in front of Mothershead's drug- 
store on Washington Street, and from several private 
wells. Henry Ward Beecher was one of the most 
daring and effective of the workers, and got his 
clothes frozen on him and his hair full of ice, as did 
hundreds of others. The Old Seminary boys were 
dismissed by Mr. Kemper to go down and help in 
the bucket line. The loss was but three thousand 
dollars, but that was the biggest fire that had ever 
happened here at that time. Miss Lesner opened 
the Indianapolis Female Collegiate Institute in the 
" Franklin Institute" house, on Circle Street, Sep- 
tember, 1843. In June, 1843, Robert Parmelee 
began the manufacture of pianos here on the south 
side of Washington Street, a little west of Meridian. 
It did not last long or amount to much. The fall 
before 1842, E. J. Peck and Edwin Hedderly began 
the manufacture of lard-oil on Washington Street. 
In April, 1844, was laid out the " Union Cemetery," 
east of and adjoining the " Old Graveyard." In 1833 
Dr. Coe had added a considerable section, and in 
1852 Messrs. Blake, Ray, and Peck made a much 
more considerable addition on the east and north, 
long known as the " New Graveyard." With the 
addition made in 1844 the cemetery extended from 
the river to Kentucky Avenue, and northward to the 
Vandalia Railroad. In 1860 a large plat between 
the last addition and the river was platted as an 
addition, and used chiefly for the burial of Con- 
federate prisoners who died in the camp hospitals 
here. But little else of it was ever used as a ceme- 
tery, and after Crown Hill was ready for use the 



130 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



dead were removed there, and the ground occupied 
by the Vandalia Railway Company for freight-yard 
tracks, wood-sheds, blacksmith-shop, round-house, and 
engine-house, and Ferguson's pork-house was put on 
a part of it. Washington Street was graded and 
graveled in July, 1845. In the same year the old 
Methodist Church, erected in 1827-29, began to 
crack and grow unsafe, and was torn down and re- 
placed next year by Wesley Chapel. In 1843 the 
Methodist Church, growing unwieldy, divided, and 
one part retained the old church on the corner of 
Circle and Meridian Streets, the other used the court- 
house while they were building a new house, known 
as Roberts' Chapel, on the corner of Pennsylvania 
and Market, the present site of the Journal office. 
It was completed in 1844, under the pastorate of 
Rev. J. S. Bayliss. In 1868 this church was sold 
and converted into the Martindale Block, and a new 
church was soon begun on the corner of Delaware 
and Vermont Streets. It is of stone, and not yet 
fully finished, but it is one of the finest church 
edifices in the State. The first city clock, built by 
John Mofiatt in 1853-54, was set in the steeple of 
Roberts' Chapel in 1854, and remained until 1868, 
when it was removed by the fire engineers. In the 
summer Seton W. Norris built, on the southwest 
corner of Washington and Meridian Streets, the 
block torn away a few years ago to make way for 
the present Hubbard Block. It was the finest build- 
ing in the place in its day. The Locomotive, for 
several years a popular literary weekly paper, was 
started by the apprentices in the Journal office. In 
the summer of 1846 the audacity of the gamblers 
provoked the citizens to harsh measures, and a public 
meeting appointed Hiram Brown, the oldest member 
of the bar, and one of the ablest, to the special duty 
of prosecuting them. His work, with a repetition 
of the public meeting the following year, drove off 
the worst of the dark-legged fraternity. The depot 
of the Madison Railroad was built in 1846, and was 
a substantial intimation that the long isolation of the 
town would soon be broken. Property had already 
taken an upward turn, and values were improving in 
the hopeless section of East South Street, then a 
country lane, and Pogue's Run Valley. Complaint 



was made of the selection of so remote a site as South 
Street east of Pennsylvania, but being fixed the 
Council began improving the streets leading down 
there across the swampy bottom, and the property- 
holders straightened the creek from Virginia Avenue 
to Meridian Street. 

Governor Whitcomb issued his proclamation calling 
for volunteers for the Mexican war May 23, 1846, 
and Capt. James T. Drake speedily raised a company, 
with John McDougal, afterwards Lieutenant-Governor 
of California, as first lieutenant, and Lew Wallace, 
now general and minister to Turkey, as second lieu- 
tenant. It was made part of the First Indiana Regi- 
ment, of which Capt. Drake was made colonel. ' It 
spent the whole year of its enlistment guarding the 
mouth of the Rio Grande, where Luther Peck, son 
of the first Lutheran clergyman here, was drowned. 
Two other companies were raised in May and Sep- 
tember, 1847, by Edward Lander, elder brother of 
Gen. Frederick Lander, and Capt. John McDougal. 
They were put in the Fourth and Fifth Regiments. 
It may be noted here that in numbering the regiments 
raised by the State in the civil war, the five Mexican 
regiments were counted first, and the first Indiana 
regiment in the late war was the sixth. 

4th. During the fall and winter of 1842 and the 
early spring of 1843 a strong religious excitement 
prevailed throughout the West, and nowhere more ab- 
sorbingly than in Indianapolis. The preaching of the 
" Second Advent" by Samuel Miller had attracted 
the attention even of those who had not the slightest 
faith in his calculations or his interpretations of 
Daniel's " time, times, and an half" The spirit of 
religious revival was abroad, and in spite of the in- 
evitable extravagancies of religious enthusiasm it 
wrought as much permanent good probably as any 
that ever disturbed the self-seeking of any community. 
The " second coming" gave especial force to the ex- 
hortations of the time, and when the great comet 
blazed out all along the western horizon it gave a 
special force to the predictions of the " second coming." 
One of the portents was there before the eyes of all 
the world, and it gave encouragement to the invention 
of many more ; meteors went flashing down the sky, 
leaving fiery trails that broke up into little patches 



THE CAPITAL IN THE WOODS. 



131 



which finally took the Ibrm of letters and read, '■ The 
Lord is coming." Strange intimations of the great 
catastrophe were found in marks on leaves, sometimes 
on prophetic eggs of strangely inspired pullets, some- 
times on the bark of trees, or the accidental lines of 
rain-drops. They were all paraded with gloomy ex- 
ultation in the Midnight Cry, a paper of the Second 
Advent, published in Cincinnati by Joshua V. Himes. 
The " unrespective" secular press laughed at these 
fantastic phenomena. They called the " Second Ad- 
vent" organ the Midnight Howl and the Evening Yell, 
and insisted that the mysterious letters made of a 
meteor's tail spelled " Pay the printer." But the re- 
vival went on, not exactly separated from the advent 
excitement but independently of it ; all the churches 
felt it. About the time the comet appeared a young 
preacher of considerable ability, who had given the 
" advent" prophecies close study, came to the town 
and preached a series of connected sermons on the 
subject in several of the churches, principally in the 
Christian Church on Kentucky Avenue, and the First 
Lutheran Church on Ohio Street near Meridian. One 
gloomy, rainy night, when he was preaching at this 
latter place, there was a strange lurid glare all over the 
western sky, reaching up to the zenith, and looking as 
if the world were really on fire in the back yard, as 
the congregation was dismissed and got out of doors 
into the drizzling rain. The sermon had described 
with considerable graphic power the portents that 
would precede Christ's second coming, and the impres- 
sion was still vivid on the minds of many. That 
awful red light spreading over the thick clouds all 
around both poles and up to the zenith seemed a reali- 
zation of the most terrible anticipation of the sermon. 
Nobody fainted or screamed, but a good many women 
and not a few men looked at it as they never before 
had looked at an earthly conflagration. It proved to 
be the burning of a few large ricks of hemp cut and 
stacked on a farm on the river bank at the ford of the 
Crawfordsville road. 

Several of the most confident of the Adventists made 
themselves ascension robes, and some sold or gave away 
their property. One of the leading men sold out and 
joined the Shakers in Ohio. One woman became per- 
manently insane and was afterwards put in the asylum. 



The failure of the world to " come to time," or rather 
eternity, on the 1st of April, 1843, or thereabouts, 
which was the date that Miller's calculations had de- 
termined to be the limit, did not undeceive any of the 
devout adherents. The prophet or interpreter of 
prophets recast his calculation and concluded that 
June was a safer limit than April. The failure then 
began to tell on the delusion of pretty much all who 
had not undeceived themselves before, and the " Second 
Advent" fancy disappeared entirely. 

It will not be beneath the dignity of a local history 
to notice in this connection that there were three places 
chiefly used for the baptism of converts, where the rite 
was applied by immersion, — the river at the old ferry, 
as often on the west as the east side, because the water 
shoaled very gradually on that side, and on the east 
there was a " stepping oif" place that would take a 
man in a swimming depth in a few steps ; another 
was in the canal at Washington Street, but less used 
than the canal at the Kentucky Avenue bridge. It 
was here that Mr. Beecher first practiced immersion, 
after a declaration that he had no more faith in the 
efiicacy of the rite in that form than any other, but 
would administer it in the way that best pleased the 
subject of it. A very common feature of Sunday 
was a procession or crowd going from some up-town 
church to the river or canal to administer baptism at 
the close of the morning's services. When pork- 
houses spoiled the river and sewage befouled the canal 
the churches betook themselves to baptisteries. The 
colored brethren, whose church was on Georgia Street 
west of Mississippi and very near the canal, went to 
the Georgia Street foot-bridge. The creek was never 
used for this service, or, if at all, very early in the set- 
tlement's religious development. 

The beginning of the year 1847 was marked by 
the highest flood ever known in the river before or 
since, though that of last February could have been 
but little below it. On the first Sunday of the new 
year the water was at its highest. It covered the 
whole of the river bottom, Fall Creek and Eagle 
Creek bottoms, and in many places came up level with 
the surface of the bluffs. It ran over the top of the 
middle pier of the National road bridge, and several 
times the big trees and masses of drift borne down on 



132 



HISTOKY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



the furious current looked as if they must striiie the 
sills and girders and sweep the structure away. The 
National road west of the river was covered " hub 
deep" from the bridge to the bluflF. In two places the 
current was so strong as to cut great gaps across the 
heavily macadamized roadway, and pour down the 
south slope of the grade into the low iiround of tiie 
bottom in a violent cataract that churned the soft allu- 
vial soil into thin mud and carried it off. In this way 
two deep pits were dug, the largest of which was prob- 
ably one hundred feet in diameter and twenty feet 
deep. A frame house on the south side of the road 
was washed off by the flood and lodged in this hole, 
where it stuck, leaning dangerously over for several 
months, but was finally removed, and is still standing 
near its former site in Indianola. These two huge 
scars left by the flood remained more or less conspic- 
uous for twenty years. The mischief done by it was 
so general and serious that the Legislature extended 
the time of paying taxes by land-owners in the river 
bottoms, and probably remitted them altogether in 
cases of especial hardship. The canal bank along the 
river near the Michigan road was washed away, the 
feeder-dam injured, the Fall Creek aqueduct washed 
out, and the Pogue's Run culvert on Merrill Street 
torn away. The old " ravines" in the town made 
their last serious disturbance in that flood. 

The 22d of February, 1847, was celebrated by a 
procession of the mechanics of the city, who marched 
to the Christian Church on Kentucky Avenue, and 
were addressed by the late John D. Defrees, then re- 
cently become proprietor and editor of the Journal. 
On the 26th a general meeting of the citizens was 
held at the court-house to take measures for assisting 
in the relief of the distress in Ireland. A good deal 
of good work was done here by committees and by 
individual liberality. 



CHAPTER VL 

CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



There was not much change, except in name, 
when the " town" became the " city" of Indianap- 
olis, but it marked the beginning of a very posi- 



tive and great change produced by the close approach 
of the first railroad, so it may fitly indicate the be- 
ginning of the " third period" of the city's history, 
a period of vigorous growth and solid promise. The 
leading events are: 1st, The changes in the munici- 
pal government and its departments ; 2d, The intro- 
duction of the free school system and the taxation to 
maintain it ; 3d, The development of the railroad sys- 
tem, and the improvement in business and material 
condition produced by it; 4th, Associations for busi- 
ness or charity, churches, private schools, lectures, 
and means of intellectual culture or diversion. As the 
history of the municipal government will be treated 
separately and fully, nothing need be said here except 
as to its general course. The public schools, churches, 
railroads, and manufactures are in the same category. 
First. — On the 13th of February, 1847, the Legis- 
lature enacted a city charter for Indianapolis, and left 
it to be accepted or rejected by a popular vote on the 
27th of March, the Governor being required to make 
proclamation of the operation of the charter if it were 
accepted. The city was divided into seven wards, — 
four north of Washington Street, the First, Second, 
Third, and Fourth ; and three south of it, the Fifth, 
Sixth, and Seventh. The First contained all of the 
city (which covered the whole donation east of the 
river) east of Alabama Street, north of Washington ; 
the Second, all westward to Meridian ; the Third, all 
to Mississippi; the Fourth, all west to the river, 
south of Washington Street ; the Fifth Ward took all 
west of Illinois Street; the Sixth, all east to Dela- 
ware ; the Seventh, all the donation east of Delaware. 
The first city election was to be held on the 24th of 
April, the mayor to serve two years, with a veto on 
the Council and the jurisdiction of a justice, his pay 
to be his fees. The wards to elect one councilman each 
for one year, with a salary of twenty-four dollars, or 
two dollars for each regular meeting. They had all 
the usual powers of municipal bodies, and were re- 
quired to elect secretary, treasurer, assessor, marshal, 
with a constable's powers, street commissioners, city 
and such other officers as they deemed necessary. 
Taxation could not exceed fifteen cents on one hun- 
dred dollars, except by special authority from a popu- 
lar vote. The most important question to be settled 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



133 



at the election of April 24th for city officers was that 
of which least was said, the levy of a special tax 
to establish and maintain a free-school system. The 
State school fund, at that time mainly derived from 
the sale of the " school section" reserved in each Con- 
gressional township for school purposes, and thence 
called the " Congressional Township Fund," was not 
sufficient to accomplish- anything of consequence, 
and it was proposed to assist it, and make an efficient 
system with the addition of a local school tax. The 
people were to vote " yes" or " no" on that proposi- 
tion at the first city election. The president of the 
expiring Town Council, or Board of Trustees at first. 
Squire Joseph A. Levy, a very respectable black- 
smith on Washington Street, issued his proclamation 
for an election on the 27th of March to decide upon 
the acceptance of the charter. It was accepted by 
four hundred and forty-nine votes to nineteen. Gov- 
ernor Whitcomb proclaimed the charter in force on 
the 30th. Then President Levy issued his second 
proclamation for an election of city officers and the 
decision of the school-tax question. The election 
was held in the new seven wards, and resulted in the 
choice of Samuel Henderson, the first president of 
the old Council or Board, as mayor ; Uriah Gates, 
councilman from the First Ward ; Henry Tatewiler, 
Second ; Cornelius King, Third ; Samuel S. Rookeri 
Fourth ; Charles W. Cady, Fifth ; Abram W. Har- 
rison, Sixth ; William L. Wingate, Seventh. The 
new Council organized the 1st of May, with Mr. 
Rooker as president ; James G. Jordan as secretary, 
at a salary of one hundred dollars; Nathan Lister, 
treasurer, fifty dollars ; James Wood, engineer, three 
hundred dollars; William Campbell, marshal and col- 
lector, with a per cent, pay for the latter and one 
hundred and fifty dollars and fees for the former ; 
Andrew M. Carnaban, city attorney, paid by fees; 
Jacob B. Filler, street commissioner, one hundred 
dollars ; David Cox, mes-senger of the Marion Fire 
Company, and Jacob B. Fitler of the Relief, each 
twenty-five dollars ; Sampson Barbee and Jacob 
Miller, market clerks or masters, at fifty dollars ; 
Joshua Black, assessor, paid by the day while en- 
gaged ; Benjamin F. Lobaugh, sexton. The total of 
the tax duplicate for 1846-47 was four thousand 



two hundred and twenty-six dollars ; the aggregate of 
taxable property, about one million dollars. The vote 
of the wards is worth recording here. About five 
hundred votes were polled altogether. In the First 
Ward, 108; Second, 85; Third, 122; Fourth, 35 ; 
Fifth, 37 ; Sixth, 41 ; Seventh, 66. The vote on 
the school tax was four hundred and six for it, 
twenty-nine against it. 

Second. — -The authority given by the popular vote 
on the 24th of April for the school levy was promptly 
used. Each ward was made a district with a trustee, 
houses were rented and teachers engaged, but the 
fund would only maintain one-quarter of the four 
free. Donations were asked, lots purchased cheaply 
in 1848 and 1849, and substantial one-story brick 
houses built in 1851 and 1852, and so arranged as to 
allow enlargement by a second story when necessary. 
This was added in the First, Second, and Fifth 
Wards in two or three years. All have been greatly 
enlarged since, except the old house on Pennsylvania 
Street a little south of South Street. It is a machine- 
shop now. A two-story house was built in the first 
place in the Seventh Ward, on Virginia Avenue, in 
1857, and made a three-story in 1865. Lots were 
bought in the Fourth Ward and what was afterwards 
the Ninth in 1857, and at the close of the war in 
1865 and 1866 large, handsome, commodious three- 
story structures, with high basements and all im- 
provements for warmth and ventilation, were built at 
a co^t of thirty-two thousand dollars each. In 1867 
the first four-story house was built in what was then 
the south part of the Sixth Ward at a cost of forty- 
three thousand dollars. Three times as many school- 
houses as all these have been added to the system 
since, and will be noticed in the division of the work 
treating specially of schools and colleges. The first 
tax levy in 1847 yielded .S1981 ; in 1848,62385; 
in 1849, $2851. The aggregate of collections up to 
1850 was S6160, of which $5938 were spent in the 
following year for lots and houses. In 1857 the 
annual proceeds were $20,329. The first expendi- 
tures were wholly for lots and buildings, the teachers 
getting their pay as the teachers of private schools 
did, from parents. After house-room had been 
secured, the revenue could go in part for tuition, 



134 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



for longer terms and more teachers. In this half- 
formed condition the schools were forced by lack of 
means to continue till the accumulations of the tax 
and State fund enabled them to make a fair start in 
a real free-school sy.stem. This was done in 1853, 
when the Council made Henry P. Coburn, Calvin 
Fletcher, and Henry F. West trustees for all the 
schools, instead of making each ward a district with 
a trustee as before. A system of regulations was 
drafted by Mr. Fletcher, and on the 25th of April, 
1853, the schools were opened free for the first time, 
with two male and twelve female teachers. Up to 
that time the number of scholars had not exceeded 
three hundred and forty. In the first week of the 
new system it was seven hundred, and over one 
thousand of the two thousand six hundred children 
of school age — from six to twenty-one — were enrolled. 
The new arrangement soon provided for the use of 
uniform test-books and unity of method in teaching, 
and in August a system of grades was adopted, the 
divisions being the Primary, Secondary, Intermediate, 
Grammar, and High Schools. All the lower grades 
were kept together with the Grammar schools in the 
same building, the latter under the " principal" 
teacher. The old County Seminary was repaired 
and made the High School building under Mr. E. P. 
Cole, with an assistant. 

Until 1855 the trustees themselves did all the 
work appertaining to the system outside of the 
school-houses, and did it without compensation. In 
February, 1855, they made Silas T. Bowen — now 
head of the oldest book house in the State, Bowen, 
■Stewart & Co. — superintendent, with a salary of 
four hundred dollars a year. He improved the 
schools greatly, but could not spare the time that they 
needed, and gave place to George B. Stone, at one 
thousand dollars a year. He had previously had 
charge of the High School, succeeding Mr. Cole. His i 
salary was one thousand dollars, and he gave his whole 
time and mind to the work. Under him the system 
was fully developed, and worked as well as it ever 
has since with costlier oflScers and greater pretensions. ' 
His success overcame all prejudices and objections, 
and no tax was paid so cheerfully as the school tax. 
The income increased as the city grew, and more i 



teachers were employed, new houses built, old ones 
enlarged, and the average attendance increased from 
three hundred and forty in April, 1853, when the 
system went into operation, to fourteen hundred in 
1856 and eighteen hundred in 1857. Ten houses 
had been built, forty-four per cent, of the children of 
" school age" enrolled, and seventy-three per cent, of 
the enrollment was in average daily attendance. Just 
in this most promising condition the Supreme Court 
struck the system a blow that prostrated it at once 
and paralyzed it for five years. At the suit of Fow- 
ler, of Lafayette, the court held that local taxation in 
aid of schools was not the " uniform taxation" re- 
quired by the Constitution, and could not be enforced. 
The opinion was very general at the time, and has 
only grown stronger since, that there was nothing but 
the thinnest of distinctions to sustain this disastrous 
ruling. It was made in January, 1858. The Coun- 
cil at once met to see what could be done, and called 
upon the citizens of each ward to hold meetings with 
the same object. This was done on the 29th of Jan- 
uary. Subscriptions were taken to maintain the 
schools anyhow, and three thousand dollars were con- 
tributed. This would not go far, and at the end of the 
current quarter, seeing that without a revenue backed 
by law nothing of value could be done, the effort was 
abandoned, the schools closed, the teachers left the 
city many of them, and the houses were rented for 
private schools sometimes, and when they were not 
they were occupied by thieves and strumpets. The 
houses were kept in indifferent repair by a small tax, 
and the State fund allowed a free term of a few 
months, amounting to four months and a half in 
1860 and 1861. No attempt at free schools was made 
in 1859. In 1862 the Supreme Court reviewed its 
decision, the system was reorganized, the tax re-estab- 
lished, and the flourishing condition of 1857 fully 
restored and improved. The further history of the 
public schools will be treated in its department, as 
above intimated. 

Third. — The Madison Railroad, in its progress 
towards the capital, after the State had sold it to a 
company in 1843, was slow, halting for several months 
at temporary stations, as North Vernon, Sand Creek, 
Clifty Creek, Columbus, Edinburg, Franklin, and 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



135 



Greenwood. It reached the last station in the latter 
part of the summer of 1847, and that left but ten miles 
of staging from the city. The influence of the great 
public improvement, as already intimated, had gone 
ahead of it, aud inspired the most active and prom- 
ising enterprise and permanent progress that had yet 
appeared. Thousands of the old settlers had never 
seen a railroad, not even this one, which for a half- 
dozen years had been within fifty miles of them. 
The curiosity about it was universal, and there was 
plenty of time for it to grow full-size and spread as 
far as convenient access could reach. The citizens 
held a meeting a few days before the 1st of October, 
the day track-laying would be completed to the depot 
already in progress on South Street, and made arrange- 
ments to celebrate the occasion in a suitable manner. 
The last spike was driven about nine o'clock in the 
morning of Oct. 1, 1847, and the rail was barely in 
place and ready when two big excursion trains came 
up from the lower part of the road, and were received 
with much shouting, shooting, and spouting. Spald- 
ing's Circus, with the band, led by Ned Kendall, the 
famous bugler, was in the city, and the whole availa- 
ble portion of it turned out to decorate the occasion. 
Governor Whitcomb made a .speech from the roof of 
a car at the depot, aud an illumination and display 
of fire-works at night closed a demonstration that 
events proved was not the glittering illusion of the 
popular rejoicing ten years and more before when the 
project of the road was adopted by the Legislature. 
Tlie good effect of a means of transportation that 
could be depended on, and would not consume the full 
value of the article in the cost of getting it where some- 
body would buy it, was speedily felt. The pork packed 
here and at Broad Ripple by the Mansurs since 1841, 
and sent down the river in flat-boats on the spring 
floods, could go anywhere now, choose a market, 
and run no risk. Corn and wheat doubled in 
price before Christmas, while goods brought from 
abroad were cheapened by the same process that en- 
hanced home products. Further notice will be taken 
of the changes produced by this first admission of 
the city to the commercial connections of the country 
and by its successors a little later. 

From the time the completion of the Madison 



Road became a certainty railroad enterprise moved 
more energetically, and finally with long bounds that 
have not ceased yet and hardly slackened, except as 
financial straits have forced it. The Peru and In- 
dianapolis line was chartered in 1815-46, completed 
to Noblesville, twenty-one miles, in the spring of 

1851, and to Peru, seventy-three miles, in April, 
1854. The Bellefontaine (Bee Line) was chartered 
two years later, but was completed to Pendleton, 
twenty-eight miles, three months sooner, and to the 
State line at Union City in December, 1852, over a 
year sooner. The Terre Haute Road (Vandalia), 
chartered in 1846, was finished to Terre Haute, sev- 
enty-three miles, in May, 1852. The Jefferson ville 
Road, begun in 1848, was finished to Edinburg, sev- 
enty-eight miles, and connected with the Madison in 

1852. The Lafayette (now Cincinnati, Indianapolis, 
St. Louis and Chicago, or Big Four) was begun in 
1849, and finished to Lafayette, sixty-five miles, in 
1852. The Central (Pan Handle) was begun in 
1851, and finished to the State line near Richmond, 
seventy-two miles, December, 1853. The Cincin- 
nati Road (now part of the Cincinnati, Indianapolis, 
St. Louis and Chicago) was begun in 1850, but not 
chartered as a through road till 1851, because it 
would cut off all the up-river trade of the Madison 
Road. It was completed to Lawrenceburg, ninety 
miles, in October, 1853. The Junction Road, to 
Hamilton, Ohio, was begun in 1850, but delayed by 
one obstruction or another, so that it was not com- 
pleted to the city till May, 1868. The Vincennes Road 
was started in 1851, and the company organized under 
the late John H. Bradley in 1853, but nothing of 
consequence till a reorganization was made under the 
late Gen. Ambrose E. Burnside, in 1865. It was 
then pushed vigorously, and completed to the city in 
1868. The city gave it a subsidy of sixty thousand 
dollars. An " Air Line" road to Evansville was pro- 
jected in 1840, and taken up in 1853 by Oliver H. 
Smith, the founder of the Bellefontaine Road, to con- 
nect with the latter and make a through line from 
the lower Ohio to Lake Erie, and under this organ- 
ization surveys were made and work advanced vigor- 
ously till the financial crash of 1857 stopped it, and 
before the effects of that had passed away Mr. Smith 



136 



HISTOKY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



died, and the " Air Line" is still a project instead of 
a fact. A " Short Line" road to Cincinnati was pro- 
jected in 1853, surveys and contracts made, but 
stopped in 1855 by financial stress, and has remained 
dead ever since. The Toledo and Indianapolis Road, 
a direct line of one hundred and eighty-five miles, 
was organized in 1854 for a short lake connection, 
but hard times killed it. The Indiana and Illinois 
Central, one hundred and sixty miles, to Decatur, 111., 
was projected in 1852, and organized in 1853, began 
work and advanced hopefully till the " hard times" 
came upon it. Later it was reorganized as the Indian- 
apolis, Decatur and Springfield Road, and was com- 
pleted in 1881. In 1866 the Cincinnati Road wanted 
a connection to reach Chicago business, and its mar^ 
agement projected a rival line to the Lafayette through 
Crawfordsville, to which the city voted a subsidy of 
forty-five thousand dollars. Work was begun and 
progressing favorably, when the Lafayette was bought 
and absorbed and the Crawfordsville abandoned. 
This did not please the people of the rich corn and 
pork section traversed by the proposed line, and then 
another company was formed, contracts re-let, and the 
road completed to the city as the Indianapolis, Bloom- 
ington and Western in 1869. The Indianapolis and 
St. Louis Road was begun in 1867 to make a Western 
connection for one of the great Eastern trunk lines, 
and was finished in 1869. Within the last two years 
the Indianapolis, Bloomington and Western has made 
an eastern extension, entering the city beside the Bee 
Line tracks, and about a year ago consolidated the 
Indianapolis, Decatur and Springfield Company with 
itself, running both lines. The " Chicago Air Line" 
road, after a long period of embarrassment and ob- 
struction, was completed into the city last spring, 1883. 
The Union Railway Company, wholly confined to the 
city, was organized in 1S49, mainly by Gen. Thomas 
A. Morris, Oliver H. Smith, Chauneey Rose, and 
Edwin J. Peck. The Union tracks were laid in 1850, 
and the depot, upon Gen. Morris' plans, in 1853. 
Previously the Bellefontaine trains had started from 
the Terre Haute (now Vandalia ) Depot, on Tennessee 
and Louisiana Streets, one square west of the Union 
Depot. A Belt Road, to connect outside of the city all 
the roads entering it, by which the}- could transfer 



cars and trains from one to the other without passing 
through the city, was projected and partly graded by 
a company, mainly composed of other railroad com- 
panies, eight or ten years ago, but abandoned in the 
stress of finances. In 1876 it was taken up by a 
company, mainly of capitalists in the city or con- 
nected with the railroads centring here, and on popu- 
lar approval by a vote the city indorsed the company's 
bonds to the amount of five hundred thousand dol- 
lars, taking a mortgage on the road and stock to 
secure itself, and the road was rapidly built in con- 
nection with the stock-yard, and opened for business 
in November, 1877. Within a year it has been 
leased by the Union Company, and both are now 
under one management. 

The first telegraph line was constructed in the 
spring of 1848, from here to Dayton, by a company 
organized by Henry O'Reilly, under a general law 
passed the preceding February. The first dispatch 
was sent from here to Richmond on the 12th of May ; 
tiie first published dispatch appeared in the Sentinel 
of May 24th. The first operator was Mr. Isaac H. 
Kiersted, and his office was in the second story of the 
building where the Hubbard block now stands. Two 
years later a .second line was built by Wade & Co., 
but consolidated with the other in April, 1853. Other 
lines have been built and absorbed here, and all over 
the country. The operators here have been Isaac H. 
Kiersted, J. W. Chapin, Anton Schneider, Sidney B. 
xMorris, J. F. Wilson, and John F. Wallaok. The 
last was made superintendent here when an officer of 
that kind was first found necessary, and he has filled 
the place ever since, nearly twenty years. For the 
first eight or ten years dispatches were taken by im- 
pressions of the Morse alphabet on long ribbons of 
heavy paper ; and newspaper men had to copy these, 
fill out the abbreviations, and arrange them in some 
sort of coherent order each for himself. A very few 
years before the war operators here began to read by 
sound, Coleman Wilson being the first resident sound 
reader. From that time forward the operators made 
manifold copies for the press, and saved editors a good 
deal of work. The most notable event, next to the 
first appearance of the electric telegraph, was the suc- 
cessful laying, so soon ruined, of the first Atlantic 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



137 




138 



HISTORY OP INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



cable, in August, 1858. There was an illumination 
and bonfires, and a general congratulatory time that 
night. Governor Wallace made a speech, and Gov- 
ernor Willard had a pleasant reception at the executive 
residence. It is not generally known that the appro- 
priation which enabled Professor Morse to build his 
experimental line to Baltimore was carried in com- 
mittee by the vote of Governor Wallace, and but for 
that vote the appropriation and pregnant experiment 
would have both failed for another year at least. The 
committee on commerce, in which the appropriation 
of forty thousand dollars was considered, was evenly 
divided, as it happened, and Governor Wallace's name 
coming last on the roll his vote decided the question 
for the appropriation. At the ensuing congressional 
election his antagonist used this vote against him 
with such eiFect that it helped to defeat him. Faith 
in electricity forty years ago was hardly as wide and 
solid as it has grown to be since. 

In February, 1851, the Indianapolis Gaslight and 
Coke Company was given a special charter by the last 
Legislature under the old constitution to run fifteen 
years, and on the 6th of March stock-books were 
opened, stock subscribed readily to the amount of 
twenty thousand dollars, the capital limited by the 
charter, and on the 26th an organization made by the 
choice of David V. Culiey as president, Willis W. 
Wright as secretary, and H. V. Barringer as superin- 
tendent. The projector of the aflFair was Mr. John 
J. Lockwood. The city gave the company the sole 
right to make and supply gas here for public or private 
use, requiring street gas at the price of that in Cin- 
cinnati. In July the company bought a small tract 
of half swampy creek bottom on the east side of 
Pennsylvania Street, on the south bank of the creek, 
and erected, in a small, cheap way, the buildings 
needed. Mains were laid in Pennsylvania and Wash- 
ington Streets at the same time. On the 10th of 
January, 1852, the first gas was furnished for regular 
consumption. In the following April, 1853, a few 
weeks over a year after the organization of the com- 
pany, seven thousand seven hundred feet of pipe had 
been laid, six hundred and seventy-five burners were 
supplied for one hundred and sixteen consumers, and 
thirty bushels of coal were used per day. Previously 



Masonic Hall, and the two street lamps in front of it, 
had been lighted with gas made by a little apparatus 
of its own. The enterprise ran heavily at the start 
till a superintendent who knew his business was ob- 
tained, and the works were enlarged and improved. 
A special tax to pay for lighting the streets with gas 
was defeated at the city election of 1852, and the 
lighting of Washington Street from Pennsylvania 
Street to Meridian was paid for by the property 
owners. In December, 1854, a contract was made with 
the company to light the central portions of Washing- 
ton and the adjacent streets, and it was done in 1855. 
From that time a steady annual addition was made, 
the property holders paying for the posts and lamps, 
till in 1868 the totail length of mains was twenty- 
three miles, and of service-pipe seventy-five miles, 
with fifteen hundred and fifty consumers of gas, and 
an average daily production of one hundred and 
seventy-five thousand feet. The largest gas-holder is 
on Delaware Street, and has a capacity of three hun- 
dred thousand cubic feet. In February, 1859, the 
Council decided to put four lamps to a square, the 
opposite corners to be lighted, and the two intermedi- 
ate lamps to be allowed equal intervals from the other 
two and each other, one on each side of the street. 
The original charter expired March 4, 1866. The 
City Council, thinking to get better terms than before, 
ordered, in May, 1865, an advertisement for proposals 
to light the city for twenty years. No bid was made 
but by the old company, and its demand not being 
satisfactory, a committee was appointed to investigate 
the matter, and made a report of terms and conditions 
that the company would not accept. In this emer- 
gency, R. B. Catherwood & Co. made a proposition 
on the 5th of March, 1866, to take a charter for 
thirty years, with the exclusive right of the city, and 
furnish gas for three dollars per one thousand feet, 
the city to contest a claim for longer continuance made 
by the old company. The gas committee made a 
counter-proposition to charter the " Citizens' Gaslight 
and Coke Company," with an exclusive city right for 
twenty years instead of thirty, reserving the right to 
buy the works after ten years, and dividing equally 
the profits above fifteen per cent. The new company 
was to attend to the litigation with the old one, the 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



139 



capital was to be appraised every five years, the com- 
pany was to fix the gas rate annually, in March, at 
not more than three dollars per one thousand feet, 
vpere to extend mains wherever fifteen burners to a 
square were promised, insure their works, and forfeit 
their charter if they made default in the conditions. 
This move started the confident old company to a 
serious consideration of the case, and while the 
counter-proposition and ordinance of the Council 
were pendiusr, it advanced a proposal to take a twenty 
years' charter, supply gas at three dollars per one 
thousand feet, extend mains and fill all other con- 
ditions required of the new company, and lower the 
price of gas if improved processes of manufacture 
would allow it. The city would light and clean the 
lamps, and have the amount and quality of gas tested. 
The bargain was closed and is still binding. In a little 
while, however, it was found that the gas bills were 
getting to be bigger under the new arrangement at 
three dollars per one thousand feet than the old one at 
twenty-eight dollars and forty-four cents a lamp, for 
gas, lighting, and cleaning. A committee investigated 
the matter, and found that more lamps were charged 
for than had been used and more gas charged for than 
had been needed, and a gas inspector was recommen- 
ded. George H. Fleming, excellently qualified, was 
appointed, rules for testing the quality and pressure 
of gas were made, the number of hours of lighting 
fixed, and all the lamps but those on the corners were 
shut oiF at midnight, thus saving twenty thousand 
dollars a year. Since that time there have been some 
considerable changes. 

In 1877 a new gas company was organized here in 
competition with the old one, called the " Citizens' 
Company." Works were built at the west end of St. 
Clair Street, and a considerable extent of mains laid, 
private consumers supplied, and a fair prospect of 
good business opened. The gasometer exploded soon 
after operations began, and in a short time the old 
company bought the new one. It operates the new 
works, however, in connection with the old ones, now 
so greatly enlarged as to cover more than half of the 
square between the creek and South Street. Some 
ten years ago a branch establishment, for the conven- 
ience of the northeastern part of the city, was opened 



near the crossing of the Peru Railroad and Seventh 
Street. 

The first suggestion of a street railway was made 
in November, 18G0, and renewed in 1863, when a 
company was formed with Gen. Thomas A. Morris 
as president, Wm. Y. Wiley as secretary, and W. O. 
Rockwood as treasurer. They applied to the Council, 
and while the application was pending, a rival com- 
pany was formed by R. B. Catherwood, of New York, 
and some citizens here, with Col. John A. Bridgland 
as president. They proposed better terms than the 
earlier company, and oifered security to fill their con- 
tract ; but the " Citizens' Company," as it was called, 
finally lost the charter, and it was given to the Indian- 
apolis company and refused ; whereupon it was ac- 
cepted by the other, and the conditions settled. These 
facts are familiar to most readers, from the frequent 
controversies of the press with the company. Owing 
to unavoidable delays, the Council granted an exten- 
sion of time for sixty days in 1864, in the latter part 
of August, in fulfilling all the conditions, but portions 
of the work had been done, and the Illinois Street 
Line to the Union Depot had been opened with due 
ceremony by the city authorities in June of that 
year. The company, consisting of Catherwood and 
his associates, sold to Wm. H. English and E. S. 
Alvord in 1865, and these a few years later sold to 
the Messrs. Johnson, the present proprietors. The 
present extent and condition of the business of the 
company is stated in the summary in the last chapter. 
It only needs to be noticed further here, that within 
the past year the stables and shops have been enlarged 
and cover an acre on the northeast corner of Louisiana 
and Tennessee Streets, with a half-acre more on the 
oppo.site side of Tennessee Street which is laid down 
with tracks and shelter for cars not in use. A stable 
and car-house have been built in Indianola within a 
little more than a year, for the service of the line 
running to Mount Jackson and the Insane Asylum. 
The Tennessee Street establishment was seriously 
damaged by fire a few years ago, but it was not al- 
lowed to interfere with the operations of the company 
at all. Within a few months past attempts have been 
made to charter a second street railway company, 
under the name of the " Metropolitan," but so far they 



140 



HISTORY OP INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



have not succeeded, though backed by some of the 
best men in the city. On the morning of the 6th of 
January, 1884, the stables of the " Citizens' " company 
were again seriously damaged by fire. 

The first proposal for a water supply was made in 
1860 by a Mr. Bell, of Rochester, N. Y., but idly. 
The company that had come into possession of the 
canal renewed it in 1864 as idly as Mr. Bell. Mayor 
Caven recommended to the Council the initiation of 
a water system, with Crown Hill as the site for a , 
reservoir, but the Council decided that while a supply ) 
system was desirable, it was not desirable that the 
city should make it. Nothing further was done till 
1866, when the mayor again brought the matter before 
the Council, and in November of that year the inevit- 
able Catherwood came forward and accepted a charter 
requiring the water to come from the river f;ir enough 
up to avoid contamination, with other conditions 
needless to specify, as nothing came of the affair. In 
1869 the Central Canal Company, then mainly j 
a resident of Rochester, N. Y., tried to get the 
Council into a joint-stock company to introduce the 
Holly scheme, which acts by direct force without a 
reservoir, and put in their canal as the source of sup- 
ply, at a price that would make that theretofore 
useless property remunerative ; but that would not 
work. In the fall of 1869, Mr. Woodruff organized 
a company for a water supply on the Holly plan 
independently of the city, and he was given a charter 
under strict limitations, and introduced the supply 
slowly and not very successfully at first. The com- 
pany has changed a good deal, and is now under the 
presidency of Gen. Thomas A. Morris, with Mr. I 
John L. Ketcham as secretary, and supplies a large 
part of the domestic and manufacturing service of the 
city and all its fire service. Two or three years ago, 
the sources of its supply being suspected of impurity, 
it was decided to bring the whole of it from a point 
so far above the city as to make contamination im- 
possible, and a point was selected near the river 
above the Fall Creek " cut off." This has been 
reached by a costly conduit which brings water from 
a " gallery," or elongated well, about twelve hun- , 
dred feet long by fifty wide and fifteen deep, which 
cannot be damaged by river infiltration, or by any 1 



cause that does not equally damage all springs. Below 
its bed, about forty feet, is a second current which has 
been reached by boring, and rises above the surface 
of the " gallery" water. This can be depended on 
to maintain a pure supply if needed. Several analyses 
have proved the "gallery" to be as nearly pure as 
anything drawn from the ground and undistilled can 
be. 

For some years Governor Wright had made a 
specialty of agriculture and its requirements, and in 
1853 the Legislature chartered the State Board of 
Agriculture, with the Governor as president, the late 
John B. Dillon as secretary, and State Treasurer 
Mayhew as treasurer. The first fair was held in 
Military Park in October, 1852, from the 19th to 
the 25th, with thirteen hundred and sixty-five entries. 
The next was held in Lafayette, October 11th to 
13th. Horace Greeley delivered the address. Then 
it went to Madison, where its success was so indif- 
ferent that it returned to Indianapolis for four years. 
In 1859 it was taken to New Albany, and returned 
to Indianapolis for five years, till 1864, none being 
held in 1861 on account of the war. In 1865 it 
went to Fort Wayne, then came again to Indianapolis. 
Since then it has remained here. Up to 1860 it was 
held in Military Park ; then the State Board bought 
a tract of some thirty acres north of the city, with 
the assistance of the railroads, and held the fair there 
that year. During the war it was used both as a 
camp for national troops, and as a prison camp for 
prisoners of war. Some years ago an association of 
citizens and railroads joined the State Board in 
erecting the "Exposition" building, with the pur- 
pose of maintaining an annual exhibition of such 
products of skill as could not be advantageously 
shown in ordinary fiiir buildings. The success of the 
enterprise was not such to encourage its continuance 
long, and the State Board took the building with the 
assurance of protecting the obligations incurred in its 
erection. 

Belonging to this same period is the origin of the 
City Hospital. As already related, the city, during 
an epidemic alarm in early days, was going to use 
the Governor's house, in the Circle, as a hospital ; 
but the alarm disappeared and nothing further was 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



141 



done. In 1848 another serious fright was caused by 
an outbreak of smallpox, in which a prominent In- 
diana politician died at the Palmer House, now the 
Occidental. A general vaccination was ordered, and 
a lot bought and contract made for a hospital. The 
fright passed away, the citizens protested against a 
tax for a hospital, and the material was given to the 
contractor, with a bonus of two hundred and twenty- 
five dollars in consideration of his surrender of the 
contract. He built a three-story frame hotel with 
the means thus wasted by the city, and it is still in 
use on Market Street, near the Sentinel oflBce. Again, 
in 1855, a smallpox scare occurred, and it was again 
determined to erect a city hospital. A large tract of 
ground on the bank of Fall Creek, at the end of In- 
diana Avenue, was purchased, a house begun in the 



pastor of St. John's Catholic Church, asked its dona- 
tion to the Sisters of the Good Shepherd as a prison 
for females. At the same time he asked the comple- 
tion of the city house of refuge on the Bluff road, 
south of the city, of which a very substantial and 
costly foundation had been laid for a year or two and 
left unfinished for want of means, on ground donated 
by the late S. A. Fletcher ; but the opposition of 
other denominations defeated these applications, and 
the hospital was left vacant for a few months, when 
furniture and supplies were obtained at the sale of 
government stores in JeflFersonville, a superintendent 
and consulting physician appointed, and the hospital 
opened July 1, 1866. The old government additions 
becoming dilapidated, the city decided, about a year 
a<io, to build two substantial and commodious addi- 



usual fashion of failure, and f\iiled when the alarm '] tions of brick, three stories high, and one was re- 



subsided. But the affair was not allowed to die 
quietly or lie easily in its grave this time. Dr. Liv- 
ingston Dunlap, alluded to heretofore as a pioneer of 
the city, was a member of the Council, and kept the 
subject in a chronic state of resurrection till the 
house was fiui.shed, at a cost of thirty thousand dol- 
lars, in 1859. No use occurring for it, nothing was 
done with it, but as a resort for strumpets and 
thieves, and it was proposed to sell it. The Council 
decided that it was better to rent it, though it was 
not rented. Then there was a suggestion to make it 



cently completed and opened for the admission of pa- 
tients. It may be noted in this connection that the 
hou.se of refuge desired by the Catholic association 
was soon afterwards finished and put in charge of one 
of the Catholic charitable associations. 

The hospital, during its occupancy by the general 
government,, was under the charge of Dr. John M. 
Kiletun and Dr. P. H. Jameson, who, with their 
assistants, treated thirteen thousand patients there in 
four years. During the few months that intervened 
after the government ceased to use it as a hospital — 



a city prison or home for friendless women, or to let ] from July, 1865, to April, 1866 — it was occupied as 
the Sisters of Charity make a hospital of it ; but , a ''Soldiers' Home," under Dr. M. M. Wishard. The 
these projects were defeated. It was at last granted | first superintendent of the institution, after it had 
to an association of ladies for a " Home for Friend- been completely organized and provided, and made 
less Women," but not being used, it was given rent i ready for service as a city hospital, in fulfillment of 



free to somebody to take care of it. Few charitable 
schemes or means have lived through harder trials, 
and the hospital, now so important a feature of the 
city government, would probably have gone the way 
of other such efforts if the outbreak of the war had 
not compelled the national government to use it for 
its original purpose. The government made some 
considerable additions, besides improving the grounds, 
and these came to the city, with the uses of the struc- 
ture settled by four years of occupancy, in place of 
the rent of it. A short time after the government 



its original purpose, was Dr. G. V. Woollen. The 
present superintendent is Dr. W. N. Wishard. 

The Chamber of Commerce traces its origin to this 
period. A Merchants' Exchange was formed in June, 
1848, but died in early infancy, and was succeeded 
by one formed in August, 1853, by a citizens' meet- 
ing, which appointed Nicholas McCarty, Ignatius 
Brown, John D. Defrees, A. H. Brown, K. J. Gat- 
lin", and John T. Cox a committee to make a con- 
stitution, prepare a circular and map, and obtain 
money. Douglas Maguire was made president, John 



returned it to the city. Rev. Augustus Bessonies, the L. Ketcham secretary, and R. B. Duncan treasurer. 



142 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



Mr. Ignatius Brown prepared the map and circular 
setting forth the situation and condition of the city, 
and they were sent all over the country, for the first 
time giving the outside world some knowledge of the 
city's advantages as a manufacturing and commercial 
centre. After a beneficial existence of two years it 
died of inanition, and was revived in 1856, and con- 
tinued for two years more, dying, as before, for want 
of means. It was succeeded or revived in 1864 as 
the Chamber of Commerce, which, after a feeble life 
of a few years, began to develop under the great 
impulse given to business at the close of the war, and 
is now a powerful and permanent body of a thousand 
members, representing forty-five to fifty classes of 
business, of which eighteen are railroad and transpor- 
tation companies. Operating with it for a time was 
the "Merchants' and Manufacturers' Association," iu 
1868, and in 1873, for a year or two, a " Real Estate 
Exchange" was formed, with an especial eye to the 
development of real estate business. It died, how- 
ever, when the panic of 1873 culminated here in 
1875. 

Many of our leading educational and benevolent 
institutions date from the same period, from the 
adoption of a city form of government, in 1817, to 
the war. The Masonic Grand Lodge Hall, begun by 
the purchase in 1847 of the site it still retains, was 
completed far enough for occupancy by the Consti- 
tutional Convention of 1850, and dedicated the fol- 
lowing spring. The Widows' and Orphans' Society 
organized in December, 1849 ; the Northwestern 
Christian University (now Butler), removed a few 
years ago to Irvington, chartered in 1852 ; an Adams 
Express office was opened first on September 15, 
1851 ; the grand hall of the Odd-Fellows was begun 
in 1853, and completed in 1855, at a cost of thirty 
thousand dollars ; the Young Men's Christian Asso- 
ciation was organized on March 21, 1854; in 1853 
the free schools were first put in efiective operation. 
These all remain in vigorous existence. Besides these 
a number sprang up, flourished for a while, and dis- 
appeared. Among these, those deserving notice now 
are the Central Medical College, organized in the 
summer of 1849, with a faculty composed of Drs. 
John S. Bobbs, Richard Curran, J. S. Harrison, G. 



W. Mears, C. G. Downey, L. Dunlap, A. H. Baker, 
and David Funkhouser. Its location was the south- 
east corner of East and Washington Streets, its 
existence protracted for about three years. The In- 
diana Female College is another, opened by Rev. T. 
L. Lynch, on the southeast corner of Ohio and Me- 
ridian Streets. It was continued there by his suc- 
cessors till 1859, and suspended. In 1852, Dr. Mc- 
Lean opened a female seminary on the southwest 
corner of Meridian and New York Streets, and con- 
tinued it successfully till his death, in 1860, when 
Professor Todd and others maintained it till 1865. 
In 1865 the Indiana Female College was re-estab- 
lished in the McLean building, and maintained for 
two or three years, when the premises were sold to 
the Wesley Chapel congregation for the site of the 
present Meridian Church. A commercial college 
and reading-room were begun in 1851 by Wm. M. 
Scott, but they lived only a few years, the reading- 
room but a year. 

Most of the existing considerable manufactures had 
their commencement in the same period. Pork- 
packing, previously a restricted and uncertain busi- 
ness, became enlarged by additional establishments 
and by the increased product and trade of all. Iron 
had been rather an occasional infusion of trade than 
a permanent element. Grain- and lumber-mills mul- 
tiplied ; planing-mills made their first appearance, 
so did furniture-factories and coopering establish- 
ments, and agricultural machinery and carriage-fac- 
tories that kept carriages in stock. The opening up 
of means of transportation that were not dependent 
on freshets in the river or the condition of " cross- 
layed" roads gave a positive and speedy boom to all 
classes of business that was only increased by the 
war. Naturally this dozen years was to be expected 
to prove encouraging, though no one did expect such 
results so speedily. 

The first course of lectures held here was in the 
early months of 1847. The " Union Literary So- 
ciety," composed at first mainly of pupils of the 
" Old Seminary," but in its later years enlarged by 
the addition of young men unconnected with the 
school, and finally absorbed by them, secured by 
the contributions of citizens means enough to obtain 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



143 



the use of suitable places for free lectures by Dr. 
Johuson, rector of Christ Church, Rev. S. T. Gillet, 
Hon. Godlovo S. Orth, and others. The same asso- 
ciation had previously obtained a lecture from Rev. 
Henry Ward Beecher, in his church, but it was a 
single address without a succession. In 1847 or 
1848 the society, with the assistance of citizens as 
before, procured a short course of lectures from a 
Cincinnati clergyman, and occasional lectures were 
obtained from citizens. In May, 1851, John B. 
Gough delivered three or four of his noted temper- 
ance lectures in Masonic Hall. In 1853 the Union 
Literary Society, then in the act of expiration, ob- 
tained a lecture from Horace Greeley in the fall. 
The Young Men's Christian Association succeeded 
the following year, and had annual courses of lectures 
regularly for a number of years thereafter. A further 
reference will be made to these in a chapter on "Lec- 
tures and Entertainments." 

In 1855 came a financial disturbance that amounted 
to nearly a panic. It grew out of the condition of the 
currency and the banks. The Legislature, in 1852, 
had passed a " Free Banking" law, authorizing the 
issue of bills by private banks on the security of our 
State bonds, or those of any State approved by the 
State ofiBcers. Under a lax construction of this act, 
or the laxity of its provisions which no construction 
could tighten, a large number of banks had grown up 
all over the State, some well fortified with securities 
of circulation, some indiflFerently, and .some hardly 
protected at all. For a while their issues all went 
ofi' freely at home, though a good deal distrusted out- 
side of the State. The State officers had exercised 
less than due care in distinguishing between the 
securities offered, and some of a doubtful character 
had been accepted, and issues upon them thrown into 
the current of business. Governor Wright, who had 
come to doubt the operation of the act, determined to 
test the strength of some of the banks by sending 
them tlieir bills to redeem in gold. One in Vermil- 
lion County, in the slang of the day, " squatted." 
This began an impulse of distrust and discrimination 
which culminated in 1855, and continued after the 
Governor had been succeeded by Governor Willard. 
Free bank paper became the plaything of brokers. 



One would refuse it, another would take it ; one 
would accept it to-day and refuse it to-morrow. Banks 
that redeemed on demand, or in any way maintained 
lair credit, as some did, were called " gilt-edged," and 
were good with all brokers and business men. Others 
of a less- assured character were discounted at any rate 
that a broker pleased. The brokers, in fact, fixed the 
value of the currency of the free banks, and the daily 
papers of the city made their first essays at " Money 
Articles" in noting the fluctuations. They made 
three classes, — the absolutely good, the uncertain, and 
the bad, — and these changed, the lower once and a 
while rising into the upper, but the general tendency 
was downwards. Gradually the weaker banks were 
closed up, the stronger became better established, and 
the disturbances disappeared till in 1863. When 
national banks were first organized, their notes 
were not considered any better than the others, but 
they possessed the vast advantage of being equally 
good everywhere. That was not the ca.se with free 
bank paper, which sometimes failed in a man's 
pocket when he was out of the State, though pos- 
sibly still current at home, and left him in as un- 
pleasant a situation as that of " Titmarsh in Lille." 
The free banks of Indianapolis were the Bank of the 
Capital, Farmers' and Mechanics' Bank, the Central 
Bank, the Traders' Bank, and the Metropolitan Bank. 
In this connection may be noticed the appearance 
of the first permanent theatre in a building erected 
for it, the Metropolitan, now the Park. There had 
frequently been temporary theatrical establishments 
in improvised buildings, but in 1857-58, Mr. Val- 
entine Butsch built the Metropolitan, on the corner 
of Washington and Tennessee Streets, a favorite loca- 
tion for circuses in earlier times, and opened it in the 
fall of the latter year. It did not prove remunerative 
till the outbreak of the war collected large bodies of 
idle men here, either as soldiers organizing in camp 
or as hangers-on of the army. Then it improved so 
greatly that ten years later the same enterprising 
"■entleman purchased an incomplete building on the 
southeast corner of Illinois and Ohio Streets, and 
converted and completed it into the Academy of 
I Music, which was burned some half-dozen years later, 
i Of the earlier dramatic enterprises here, those of an 



144 



HISTORY OP INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



occasional character in temporary quarters, and those 
later than this period of the city's history, an ac- 
count will be given in a chapter assigned to such 
entertainments. 

Municipal Government. — The history of the 
city and county during the war will be treated in 
its own division, and since the war so much of it is a 
matter of recent occurrence, within thousands of mem- 
ories, that no attempt will be made to present it except 
in the details of the different special topics to follow. 
These, except as to their early history, have not been 
sought to be presented, as any intelligible account 
must bring remote periods together in a body that 
would break up entirely the course of the general 
history. A sketch of our manufactures, to illustrate, 
would have to mass together all material facts between 
the steam-mill in 1832 and the car-works in 1882, a 
period of fifty years, and to thrust such a mass into 
the course of the general history would make an irre- 
coverable disconnection. It would be the same with 
our schools, churches, press, banks, entertainments, 
and other special subjects vitally connected with the 
city's history, but readily separable from the general 
narrative. 

The first special subject is naturally that of the 
city government, of which something has already 
been said. The first municipal organization was in 
1832. From that time the history of the county 
and that of the city are measurably separated. The 
changes up to the time of the adoption of the city 
form of government have been already noted ; those 
since, till the addition of a Board of Aldermen, may 
be very briefly stated. In 1853 the general charter 
law was adopted, by which the elections were changed 
from April to May, the terms of all officers to a single 
year, each ward given two councilmen, all elections 
given to the people, and the mayor made president 
of the Council, as he has continued to be ever since. 
In 1857 the Legislature amended the general charter 
act, which made the terms of all oflicers two years, 
and vacated half the seats in the Council each year. 
In 1859 an amendment made the Council terms four 
years instead of two. In 1861 the First Ward was 
divided and the Ninth made of the eastern half, 
and a similar division of the Seventh made the 



Eighth of the eastern half In 1865 a new charter 
was put in operation, which made all terms of office 
two years, created the office of auditor, and made the 
auditor, assessor, attorney, and engineer elective by 
the Council. In 1867 this was changed so as to 
create the office of city judge and give to the people 
only the choice of mayor, clerk, marshal, treasurer, 
assessor, and judge. The offices of auditor and 
judge were abolished in 1869, the duties of auditor 
going to the clerk and those of judge to the mayor. 
The charter remained unchanged till 1877, when the 
Board of Aldermen was created ; then the terms of 
councilmen were made one year and of aldermen two 
years. In 1881 a change was made, giving a term 
of two years to both and changing the time of the 
city election from May to October. The nine wards 
of 1861 remained unchanged till 1876, when they 
were increased to thirteen. When the Board of 
Aldermen was created they were increased to twenty- 
five and a councilman assigned to each one, while the 
whole were divided into five districts with two alder- 
men to each. 

In noting the.se political indications of the growth 
of the city it may be noted that the first addition to 
the territory of the city was made by John Wood, 
the banker, in June, 1836. In 1854 and 1855 
Blake, Drake, Fletcher, Mayhew, Blackford, and 
others made considerable additions. Mr. Ignatius 
Brown estimates that between sixty and eighty ad- 
ditions had been made up to 1868. Taking into 
account the enormous additions and subdivisions of 
additions made during the real estate speculations 
after 1868 up to 1875, the whole number can hardly 
be less than one hundred and fifty. Not a few of 
these have since relapsed into their original condi- 
tion to avoid city taxes, but the territory of the city 
still is very nearly three times as large as the dona- 
tion and a dozen times as large as the original plat 
of the town. The city assessments for taxes since the 
organization of the city government are as follows: 



Year. Tii.vables. 

1847 $1,000,000 

1850 2,326,186 

1852 4,000,000 

1853 5,131,682 

1854 6,500,000 



Tear. Taxables. 

1855 $8,000,000 

1856 9,146,000 

1857 9,874,000 

1858 10,475,000 

1859 7,146,607 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



145 



Tear. Taxables, 

1S6U $10,700,000 

1861 10,000,000 

1862 10,250,000 

1863 18,578,683 

186+ 19,723,732 

1865 20,913,274 

1866 24,835,750 

1867 25,500,605 

1868 24,000,000 

1869 22,000,000 

1870 24,522,261 

1871 27,908,820 



Yenr. Taxables. 

1872 .$34,746,026 

1873 61,246,311" 

1874 67,309,193 

1875 69,251,749 

1876 60,456,200= 

1877 55,367,245 

1878 50,029,975 

1879 48,099,940 

1880 .-. 50,030,271 

1881 51,901,217 

1882 52,612,595 

1883 53,128,150 



The present assessment of the county is about | 
§75,000,000. That of the city constituting two- 
thirds of it, the fluctuations of the latter have caused 
equal variations in the other. The tax-rate of the 
county is 70 cents for all purposes ; that of the city 
SI. 12, which is the limit. Something of the extent 
of the real estate speculative fever in 1873 may be 
judged from the fact that the sales in 1872 were 
reported by the Board of Trade as double those 
of 1871, and those of 1873 doubled those of 1872, 
amounting to over $32,500,000. Since that time 
there has been no such inflation of speculation. In 
1864 an ordinance required the issue of a " permit" 
from the city clerk to authorize the erection of a 
building. In 1865 it was found that 1621 buildings 
were erected ; in 1866, 1112 ; in 1867, 747 ; in 1870, 
840 ; in 1873, 600. Since then the decline has been 
heavy and continual until within the last two years. 
The decrease in the number of buildings, which will 
be observed, was more than compensated by the in- 
creased value till the general financial disturbance 
broke down building of all kinds almost entirely. 

The first street improvement made by the city was 
in 1836-37. At that time the national government 
was metaling the National road through the city, and 
the occasion ofiered a very obvious motive to the trus- 
tees to do something for their sidewalks. The some- 
thing was not much, but it accomplished some brick 
pavements and some grading down of inequalities. 
About that time, too, some shade-trees, principally 
locusts, were set out on the street then and for a good 

" An act of the Legislature this year required appraisement 
at cash valuation, and all real property advanced all over the 
State. 

2 The effect of depreciation following the panic of 1873. 
10 



many years called Main Street, and in various parts 
of the city. Some of these old locusts were standing 
on the corner of Meridian Street for twenty years. 
On the other streets they remained longer, and a few 
are still standing in scattered localities. A general 
plan of street improvement and drainage was made 
by James Wood, in 1841, upon an order of the 
Council, but nothing was done with it at the time, 
though later it was partially carried out where prac- 
ticable at all. The sidewalks of Washington Street 
were widened from the fifteen feet of the original 
plat to twenty, and those of the other streets from 
the original ten to twelve, and later to fifteen. Pave- 
ments were occasionally made, but more frequently 
graveled walks took their place all along the interval 
from 1836 to 1859, and the grading and graveling 
of streets went on too ; but the first substantial im- 
provement was bowldering Washington Street from 
Illinois to Meridian. From that time onward street 
improvement has gone on with little interruption, — 
some of it of a costly kind, as the block pavement of 
Delaware and other streets, which soon wore out and 
required replacing by bowlders. A recent effort has 
been made to replace the bowlders of Washington 
Street and the blocks of Market with Medina stone, 
but the cost of that material makes it unlikely to 
displace bowlders on any but streets largely occupied 
by wealthy residents. In 1855 an attempt was made 
to number the houses on Washington Street, but it 
was indifferently done, and nothing further was at- 
tempted in that direction till 1858, when A. C. How- 
ard, on a Council order, numbered all the streets; 
but counting only the houses then erected, the faulty 
plan was soon disclosed, and in 1864 he renumbered 
them on the Philadelphia plan of making fifty 
numbers to a block. The most extensive and costly 
improvement, however, has been the sewage system, 
adopted in 1870. It began with a main sewer of 
eight feet in diameter from Washington Street to 
the river, down Kentucky Avenue. A branch was 
carried up the bed of the canal from the avenue to 
Market Street, which effaced the canal that far. 
Another branch was carried along South Street to 
Fletcher Avenue, and down that avenue to its ter- 
mination. Since then a branch has been constructed 



146 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



on Illinois Street, Pennsylvania Street, and other 
streets, and the trunk line extended to the creek at 
Noble Street to connect with a line to the Female 
Reformatory. In 1868 a fifteen-cent sewage tax was 
levied, and a sewer on Ray Street, from Delaware 
to the creek, was made, terminating under Ray Street 
bridge, at a cost of sixteen thousand five hundred 
dollars. The later and larger aifair cost one hundred 
and eighty thousand dollars. The contractors were 
Wirth & Co., of Cincinnati. Their competitors were 
Symonds & Hyland, who were alleged at the time to 
have offered the city more favorable terms, and their 
rejection by the Council caused open charges of cor- 
ruption to be repeatedly urged in some of the city 
papers. The other street improvements — the street 
lamps, railway lines, and the water supply — have 
already been referred to, and do not belong to an ac- 
count of works prosecuted by the city. In 1871 the 
perils of crossing the union tracks on busy streets 
caused the erection of an iron viaduct on Delaware 
Street, some six hundred feet long and high enough 
under the upper span for the easy passage of engines 
and cars. It was but little used, however, and in 
1874 was taken down and the iron used in making 
canal and creek bridges. In 1873 a more effective 
relief, it was thought, would be given to the crowded 
business of Illinois Street at the west end of the 
Union Depot by a tunnel extending, with its ap- 
proaches, from near South Street to near the middle 
of the block north of Louisiana Street. It was built 
at a cost of forty thousand dollars, — so stated at the 
time, — with two wagon-tracks, in separate arches, and 
an elevated foot-passenger track on each side some 
three feet higher. The latter were soon found to be 
used for vile purposes, and were closed. The main 
tunnel was maintained in good order, but surren- 
dered wholly to the street-railway company, which has 
two tracks in it. In heavy rains the tunnel is so flooded 
as to be frequently impassable for a time. The amount 
of street-work done in twelve years — from 1836 to 
1848 — may be judged from the fact that it had all 
made a debt of but six thousand dollars, and that 
only because the city would not bear a tax heavy 
enough to pay its way. An election was held in 
1849 to determine whether a special tax of ten cents 



should be levied to pay it, and the proposition was 
carried by only eleven votes. That made the whole 
tax-rate forty-five cents on one hundred dollars, and 
I made a general growl of discontent. Aside from 
these necessary improvements, the citizens have made 
a beautiful and desirable one of their own in the 
lines of shade-^rees — the maples, and catalpas occa- 
sionally — that border all the principal streets of resi- 
dence, making continuous arches of grateful shade 
for miles. Much pride is taken in this voluntary 
decoration of the streets, and the Council has sup- 
ported it by appointing a forester to look after the 
general interests of shade-trees in streets and parks. 

The city has four parks, — the Circle, Military, 
University, and Garfield. The last is far larger than 
all the others together, and is the only one the city 
really owns, and the only one the city has never tried 
to improve. It lies a little south of the southern 
boundary, at the junction of Pleasant Run and Bean 
Creek, contains about one hundred and ten acres, and 
possesses an agreeable diversity of forest and meadow, 
level and ascent, and might easily and cheaply be 
made a popular resort. It cost about one thousand 
dollars an acre. The other three parks belong to the 
State, but are given to the city as places of recrea- 
tion on condition of their proper care and mainte- 
nance. They have all been handsomely laid out 
with walks and turf-plats and patches of trees and 
shrubbery, with a considerable pond and fountain in 
Military Park. It is the remains of the old Military 
Ground, or Reservation, that figures so frequently in 
the early history of the city. It contains about 
twenty acres, the others about four acres each. 

The city had no police force till 1854. In Septem- 
ber of that year it appointed fourteen men to that ser- 
vice, with Jefferson Springsteen as captain. The ordi- 
nance creating this force was repealed Dec. 17, 1855, 
partly because the citizens grumbled at the expense, 
and partly because an attempt to arrest some offend- 
ing Germans in August — under the prohibitory liquor 
act which went into force the preceding June and 
was never regarded by anybody — made a riot on East 
Washington Street that ended in several of the Ger- 
mans being wounded by pistol-shots. The citizens 
and the Council sustained the police, but the Su- 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



147 



preme Court speedily killed the prohibitory luw. 
The expense was serious, the police services not 
conspicuous then, and the Germans were bitterly 
exasperated at the force. Early in the following 
year, however, a second force of ten men, under 
Capt. Jesse Van Blarioum, was created. This was 
ended the next May by hostile party action, which 
made a substitute of one officer in each ward ap- 
pointed by the marshal. The next May saw a i 
change of party power, and another police force 
of seven men, under Capt. A. D. Rose, was created. 
Two men were added to this force the next year, 
1858, under Capt. Samuel Lefevre. Rose went back 
in 1859, and the force was increased to two men 
from each ward in 18(51, making fourteen men. 
Rose held till October, and was succeeded by 
Thomas Ramsey. Two men were dropped the same 
year, and John R. Cotton took command the next 
May, 1862, when the two day-patrolmen were re- 
placed, and the force uniformed at the city's expense. 
Thomas D. Amos was made captain in 1863, the 
force increased by a lieutenant and twenty-five men, 
— eighteen for the night- and seven for the day- 
patrol. David M. Powell succeeded as chief the 
same year, and the city obtained material help, in 
preserving peace, from the military authorities, which 
were then strong, and the force of rowdies and 
scoundrels equally strong, and needing the com- 
bined repression of both powers. The ordinance of 
March, 1864, established police districts, and Sam- 
uel A. Cramer was made captain in May. During 
the State Fair of 1864 twenty-six special policemen 
were added. On the 5th of December an ordinance 
added sixteen men till the following May, and made 
the chief's salary fifteen hundred dollars. The pay 
of the men was also increased in 1863 and 1864, being 
fixed finally at two dollars and a half and three 
dollars a day. In 1865, Jesse Van Blaricum was 
again made chief, with two lieutenants, nine day- and 
eighteen night-patrolmen, two detectives, and sixteen 
specials. He was succeeded in April, 1866, by 
Thomas S. Wilson, and he in 1870 by Henry Paul. 
Eli Thompson came in 1871 and continued till 
1874, when he was succeeded by Frank Wilson, who 
held two years, and was followed in 1876 by A. C. 



Dewey for a year, when Albert Travis succeeded 
from 1877 to 1880, and Robert C. Williamson fol- 
lowed till 1883, when the Metropolitan Police Act 
superseded him and the whole city force. The 
number was varied occasionally during this time, but 
was never so low as in the days preceding 1870. 
The present condition of the force under the new 
system will be found in the preliminary statement of 
the general condition of the city, and need not be 
repeated here. The Metropolitan force was created 
by an act of the Legislature of the winter of 1883, 
authorizing the appointment of three commissioners 
by the State officers, who should hold office three 
years, one retiring each year, and who should ap- 
point and control the whole police force of the city. 
They made Maj. Robbins chief, who retired recently, 
and was succeeded by John A. Lang, who had pre- 
viously been a captain. Maj. Robbins had given 
offense to many by regulations in derogation of the 
State law touching the conduct of liquor saloons. 
In 1865, Alexis Coquillard organized a force of a 
dozen men to patrol the business streets and protect 
business property at the expense of the persons 
served. The Council gave them police powers. A. 
D. Rose subsequently commanded it. Capt. Thomas 
now commands it, in a considerably enlarged force 
however. Besides these there are a half-dozen at 
the Union Depot, appointed and paid by the Union 
Railway Company, who are invested with police 
powers by the Council, and later by the Metropolitan 
authority. In this account of the police force of the 
city the facts are derived from Mr. Ignatius Brown's 
sketch, so far as its earlier history is concerned. 

In 1826, as already related, a fire company was 
organized under Capt. John Hawkins, to operate 
with buckets and ladders. It maintained its organi- 
zation till 1835, when it was absorbed by the Marion 
Engine Company, organized to operate the " Marion 
Engine," purchased at the joint expense of the State 
and city in that year. It was an " end-brake," re- 
quiring about twenty-four men to work it fully, 
and a powerful and very serviceable ■' machine" it 
proved. It was made by Merrick, of Philadelphia. 
A two-story frame house was built for it in 1837 
on the north of the Circle, the City Council meeting 



148 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTl. 



in the upper rooms. It was burned in 1851, and 
with it a large portion of the city records. In 1855 
a handsome two-story brick was erected for it at the 
corner of Massachusetts Avenue and New York 
Street. In 1840 a second engine, and second-band 
engine, too, called the "Good Intent," was purchased 
and " ran" with the Marion for a year ; then a por- 
tion of the company, under John H. Wright, took 
her and formed the " Relief Company" to work her. 
The members of both these companies were among 
the leading citizens. Caleb Scudder was the first 
captain of the Marion, and James M. Ray the first 
secretary. Capt. Scudder was succeeded by James 
Blake, Dr. John L. Mothershead, and others of the 
same position. John H. Wright was a leading mer- 
chant here, and one of the founders of the pork- 
packing business. The law at that time exempted 
firemen from city taxes and jury duty, and though 
these were slight considerations to the first of our 
volunteer firemen, they were con,siderable induce- 
ments to their successors, who were of the class that 
usually make up fire companies in other cities. Ten 
years of active service entitled a member to retire as 
an '' honorary," with all his exemptions. This per- 
mission was taken advantage of by the early mem- 
bers as fast as it could be used, and the consequence 
was that by the year 1850 very few of them were 
left in either company in active service. The later 
companies never boasted of the possession of any of 
the " pioneers." 

For nearly ten years these two companies remained 
alone, depending on church and hotel bells and per- 
sonal and general yells to make their alarms, and on 
private wells and the creek and canal for their supply 
of water. Private wells were made available some- 
times by letting down a " worm" fence or tearing 
away a panel of picket fence, and sometimes by " lines 
of buckets," that is, of spectators passing buckets 
from the well to the engine. At the first organization 
of a fire company, in 1826, every householder was 
expected to give all the bucket help he could, but no 
" fire-buckets" for that especial service were made for 
some years after, probably not till the Marion Engine 
Company was organized. Then they came, great 
awkward leather affairs, made by our own harness- 



makers in some cases, if not all, and painted blue 
inside by Samuel S. Rooker, the pioneer painter. 
They were about a foot and a half high, a foot across 
the mouth, ten inches at the bottom, with a swell in 
the middle that gave them the look of a small beer 
keg, with a leather-covered rope round the mouth, and 
a broad leather strap for a handle, which made them 
easy to carry but exceedingly hard to discharge with 
a throw, such an effort being likely to leave half the 
contents scattered over the person of the adventurous 
thrower. A later style of bucket, which was smaller, 
conical, with a considerable spread at the mouth, suc- 
ceeded and did better work. 

In 1849 the " Western Liberties Company" was 
organized in the west of the city and took the old 
" Good Intent" from the " Relief Company," when 
the latter got a "row-boat" engine, in which the men 
were all seated and the brakes worked horizontally. 
This was housed in a two-story brick on the west 
side of Meridian Street, in what is now " Hubbard's 
Block." In 1858, near the end of the volunteer ser- 
vice, with the help of the Council and the subscrip- 
tions of citizens, the " Relief" purchased a handsome 
end-brake engine and used it till disbanded in Novem- 
ber, 1859. The " row-boat" they broke up and sold 
the next spring. The Marion Company exchanged 
their well-tried engine for a fine side-brake in 1858, 
but never used it much, and it was sold to a Peru 
company, in 1860, for two thousand one hundred and 
thirty dollars. The later companies having short 
lives and little history, need little notice. The 
" Western Liberties," formed in 1849, used the 
" Good Intent" in a house on the point between 
Washington Street and the National road till 1857, 
when a brick building was erected for them on 
West Washington Street, where one of the steam- 
engines is stationed now, and a new engine called 
the " Indiana" given them. Like most of the other 
companies, they were disbanded in 1859 and their 
engine sold. The " Invincibles," derisively called 
the " Wooden Shoes" by the older companies, or- 
ganized in May, 1852, and got a little iron-box, 
end-brake engine called the " Victory," which, light 
and easily handled, and working well with a strong 
company, was always early and frequently first at fires, 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



149 



the great point of competition with volunteer com- 
panies. In 1857 they obtained a fine new engine, 
the" Conquerer," and used it till August, 1859, when 
they were disbanded. Their house was a brick on 
the east side of New Jersey Street, a half-square north 
of Washington. It was afterwards a notorious bagnio 
during the war. The " Invincibles" went into the 
"paid" department in 18G0, with their engine, but 
remained only a few months, when they finally dis- 
banded and sold their engine to Fort Wayne. The 
" Union Company" was organized in 1855 ; a handsome 
two-story brick house was built for them on the south 
side of East South Street, now occupied by a steam- 
engine, and a fine large end-brake engine given them, 
which they called •' The Spirit of 7 and G" because 
they represented those two wards. They were dis- 
banded in November, 1859. 

The " Rovers" organized in 1858 in the north- 
western part of the city, and were given a house and 
one of the old engines. Before anything more could 
be done the volunteer system was so obviously breaking 
down that the company was disbanded in June, 1859. 
The " Hook-and-Ladder Company" was organized in 
1843, and did all that their means and opportunities 
allowed till they were disbanded with the other com- 
panies in 1859. Its house was on the west end of 
the East Market space. Besides these regular com- 
panies there were two companies of boys engaged in 
the volunteer service for a time, the " 0. K. Bucket 
Company" and the " Young America Hook-and- 
Ladder Company." The former was organized in 
1849, used the old city buckets for a time, and were 
then provided with new and better ones and with a 
handsome light wagon to carry them. This com- 
pany was often of considerable service to the others 
by its ready supply of buckets. They had a frame 
house on the northeast corner of Maryland and Me- 
ridian Streets. They were disbanded in 1854, reor- 
ganized next year, again disbanded and organized as 
an engine company with the little iron-box " Vic- 
tory." The " Young America Company" were given 
their " hooks" and other apparatus in 1858, but did 
little, and were disbanded in November, 1859. 
There were no " hose companies" in the volunteer 
service, though in each engine company there came 



to be in the latter days a sort of separate formation 
of "engine" and "hose" men. The ofiicers were a 
captain (who was also president), secretary, treasurer, 
engine directors, hose directors, and messenger, the 
latter being paid some fifty dollars a year by the 
Council to attend to the apparatus and keep it in re- 
pair. A "suction hose" man was u.sually appointed 
from the most experienced members, his duty being 
to couple the sections of the " suction" hose and at- 
tach it to the engine, a service on which a good deal 
of the readiness of the engine for action depended. 

Until 1852-53 the cost of the volunteer system was 
a trifle. Occasional repairs of hose, rarer repairs of 
engines, and an occasional repainting made the sum of 
it; but as the character of the service changed by the 
retirement of the original members, the pioneers both 
of the city and the service, the expenses increased. 
The companies were less associations of citizens for 
mutual protection than unpaid employes of the 
public, and they became clamorous for larger outlays, 
not in wages, but in parades and houses and fine ap- 
paratus. They were entirely independent, however, 
and to remedy some of the evils of rivalry and occa- 
sional contention it was determined in 1853 to sub- 
ject them fully to the city authority, and a chief fire 
engineer was appointed with two assistants. The 
first chief was Joseph Little, the first assistant B. 
R. Sulgrove, second, William King. Obedience was 
made the condition of aid from the Council. As a 
protection against a power which might be tyranni- 
cally used the firemen determined to unite on their 
part to secure co-operation and unity of purpose, and 
they formed the Fire Association, with B. R. Sul- 
grove as president. It was composed of delegates 
elected from each company, and met monthly in the 
upper room of the " Relief Company" on Meridian 
Street. It was recognized by the Council as the 
representative of the whole body of firemen, and of 
course became at once a formidable political power. 
By a sort of tacit agreement the city clerk was as- 
signed to the firemen. Their " legislature" assumed 
to determine all fire appropriations, and as they felt 
their power more clearly they made their demands 
more imperiously. The citizens grumbled at the ex- 
pense and the Council at the usurpation of its power, 



150 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



and finally the association split into factions, the pres- 
idency began to be " log-rolled" and intrigued for, 
and the end was evidently close at hand. It came 
with the election of Joseph W. Davis, captain of the 
" Invincibles," as fire engineer in 1858. He had 
made warm friends and bitter enemies, and the ani- 
mosities went into the association when he went into 
the fire chieftancy. The firemen had held their 
power by union against the hostility of the citizens, 
and now their union was broken. In 1859 an at- 
tempt was made, by the election of John E. Foudray 
as chief, to restore harmony and maintain the volun- 
teer system, but it was idle. Steam had made its 
Way to recognition and favor because, as Miles 
Greenwood, the chief of Cincinnati, said, " it neither 
drank whiskey nor threw brickbats," and steam made 
its way here in the fall of 1859. An order for a Lee 
& Lamed rotary engine was made then, and the en- 
gine received the following March. It was put in 
the house of the " Westerns" and the steam depart- 
ment fairly established, though for some months two 
hand-engines and the hook-and-ladder wagon were 
retained. The steam-engine was in charge of Frank 
Glazier, the hand-engines of Charles Richman and 
William Sherwood, and the hook-and-ladder of Wil- 
liam N. Darnell. The volunteer system died in No- 
vember, 1859. Joseph W. Davis was chief of the 
new paid department, with a salary of three hundred 
dollars. In August, 1860, a small " Latta" was 
bought and put in the Marion house on Massachu- 
Betts Avenue. In October a Seneca Falls engine 
was obtained and put in the Union house on South 
Street. The first of these was in charge of Charles 
Curtiss, the second of Daniel Glazier. The hand- 
engines were then permanently dismissed and the 
last vestiges of the volunteer system lost. 

In 1863 an alarm-bell was placed in an open frame- 
work tower in the rear of the Glenn Block on Wash- 
ington Street, and was rung by an apparatus from 
the cupola on the block, where a watch was stationed 
day and night. Till 1868 this watch designated the 
locality of a fire by striking the number of the ward ; 
then in February a system of automatic telegraph 
signals was introduced, at an expense of six thousand 
dollars, and has continued in operation ever since. 



The signals are made by a little motion of an ap- 
paratus in a locked iron box, which communicates 
electrically with all the fire-bells in the city, each 
box automatically ringing a certain number of strokes, 
designating its locality, and repeating them five times. 
I The keys of the boxes are kept in adjacent houses, 
1 and their places and their signals published, so that 
at any alarm anybody may know almost the exact 
place of the fire. 

The water supply, as already stated, was for a con- 
siderable time dependent on private wells, though as 
early as 1840, or thereabouts, one or two public wells 
were dug for the engines. These were increased 
afterwards, but no cisterns were made till 1852, 
when a cistern tax was levied and sixteen constructed 
' in difierent parts of the city. Two small three hun- 
dred-barrel cisterns were made in 1850, but their 
inadequacy only proved the necessity of more. 
There are now one hundred and forty-nine in the 
city, many of them exceeding two thousand barrels, 
besides the supply from the waterworks by five 
hundred and thirty-two hydrants. The present 
steam paid department consists of seventy-six men 
(thirteen firemen, six engineers, six stokers, twenty-two 
hosemen, six laddermen, nineteen drivers, two tele- 
graph-men, one supply-driver, one watchman at head- 
quarters), eight engines (of which six are in service, 
one in reserve, one used for filling cisterns), ten reels 
in service, two in reserve, one chemical apparatus or 
engine, two hook-and-ladder wagons, two supply- 
wagons, thirty-four horses, three watch-tower men, 
fifteen chemical extinguishers (hand), twelve horses, 
one hundred and eight fire-alarm boxes. The water 
supply, as already stated, is furnished by the Holly 
system of " direct pressure," and the hose can be 
used effectively directly from the hydrants. 

The notable fires in the city are not numerous, and 
none have been very destructive. In 1826 or 1827 
the residence of Nicholas McCarty, on West Mary- 
land Street, was burned, and was the second fire in 
the place. That of Maj. Carter's tavern, in 1825, 
already related, was the first. The next was the first 
tobacco- factory on Kentucky Avenue, which was 
burned in 1838, causing an uninsured lo.ss of ten 
thousand dollars. On 4th February, 1843, the 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



151 



Washington Hall was seriously damaged by fire. May 9. — Corner Kentucky Avenue and Sliarpe 

In 1852 the row of two-story frames from the Capi- Street, Indianapolis Stove Company, stove foundry, 
tal House, east to the alley at Tomlinson's Block, was ! cause unknown; loss, $21,938; insurance, $15,980. 



burned, the most extensive fire in area that had then 
occurred in the place. In 1853 all the stables and 
out-buildings in the rear of the " Wright House," or 
Washington Hall, were burned, making a very large 
and destructive conflagration. In 1852 the Eagle 
Machine- Works were damaged to the extent of 
twenty thousand dollars, and the next year by an- 
other fire nearly as serious. In 1853 the grist-mill 
of Morris Brothers, on the corner north of the Eagle 
Machine- Works, was totally destroyed and never re- 
built. In 1856, Carlisle's mill, on the canal basin at 
the end of Market Street, was burned. In 1858 the 
smoke-house of W. & I. Mansur's pork-house was 
burned, causing a serious loss of cured meats. In 
the spring of 1865 the most disastrous fire ever 
known here took place in Kingan's new pork-house, 
then but a single year in operation. The loss was 
two hundred and forty thousand dollars, but largely 
insured. In 1874, March 22d, both sides of North 
Pennsylvania Street, including the " Exchange 
Block" and the unfinished hotel, now the Denison, 
and the " Martindale Block," were nearly destroyed, 
causing a loss, mostly insured, of two hundred thou- 
sand dollars. In 1876, Tousey & Wiggans' meat 
storage-house, on South Pennsylvania Street, was 
damaged by fire to the extent of ten thousand dollars 
or more, insured. In June, 1875, Elevator B was to- 
tally destroyed, with a loss of thirty thousand dollars. 
In 1876 the street-car stables were burned. In the 
winter of 1880, Ferguson's pork-house, south of the 
Vandalia road, on the east bank of the river, was en- 
tirely destroyed, with a loss of two hundred thousand 
dollars. In the winter of 1878-79 the " Centennial 
Block," on South Meridian Street, was damaged to 
the extent of thirty thousand dollars. The most 
important fires of the past year were the following : 

March 13. — Corner Dakota Street, J. Shellen- 
berger, butter-dish factory, cause unknown ; loss, 
$10,900.50; insurance, $7500. 

April 20. — Pogue's Run and East Michigan Street 



Corner Kentucky Avenue and Sharpc Street, Eugle 
Machine- Works, storage-room, communicated ; loss, 
$5200 ; insurance, $2000. Corner Kentucky Ave- 
nue and Sharpe Street, W. W. Choezum, saloon and 
residence, communicated ; loss, $1239 ; insurance, 
$1000. No. 21 Sharpe Street, Gus. Wilde, resi- 
dence, communicated ; loss, $650 ; insurance, $900. 

July 2. — 354 East Washington Street, Helm & 
Hartman, flour-mill; loss, $5057.45; insurance, 
$4100. 

Sept. 28. — Mclntire Street near Canal, T. P. 
Haughey, glue-factory ; loss, $6047.05 ; insurance, 
$9550. 

Oct. 31. — Second Street and Canal, J. F. Failey, 
wheel-works; loss, $6204.66 ; insurance, $18,000. 

Jan. 6, 1884. — Tennessee Street, stables of the 
Citizens' Street Railway Company, damaged to the 
amount of .$10,000. 



CHAPTER VII. 

CITY OP INDIANAPOLIS.— (C'on/nme</.) 
COMMERCIAL AND MERCANTILE INTERESTS OF THE CITT. 

The early commerce of Indianapolis was a matter 
of road-wagons and country stores. The most of 
it was barter and all of it was mixed. Dry-goods, 
drugs and groceries, cutlery, queensware and leather, 
books, tubs, and salt fish were all to be found in the 
same establishment, and whiskey was universal. A 
half-dozen yards of red flannel swung over the door 
on two sticks and hung down the sides was an un- 
failing sign ; a name over the door was not. The 
trade that was not barter — and that was not much — 
was managed with Spanish silver. The railroads of 
those days did all the transportation, but the rails 



were as often an obstruction as an assistance, as already 
J. R. Pearson et al, butter-dish factory, incendiary; ; related. The cars that ran upon them and across 



loss, $4489.36 ; insurance, $6000. 



them were usually drawn by four horses, — rarely less 



152 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



than three, — and rang their bells in a bow above the 
hames in an incessant and not unmusical jangle. 
The canvas cover was full a dozen feet along the top, 
following the deep hollow from the uptiit at each 
end, and six or seven in diameter. A good big 
wagon loaded and belled, with a good team well 
harnes.sed, and a driver of the Clem Peery school 
mounted in his " wagon" saddle — a different variety 
from the " riding" saddle, being made with black 
harness-leather skirts cut square — on the " near" 
wheel-horse, and driving with a ten-feet line of 
inch bridle-leather fastened to the ■' bit" of the 
" near" leader, his " blacksnake" whip in hand — 
and your teamster would have held it a shame to u.se 
anything else — cracking as merrily as an Italian cab- 
driver, was an inspiriting sight. In good weather, 
along the old Michigan road, on the way to Cincin- 
nati by Lawrenceburg, or to Madison by Napoleon, 
one might sometimes see a dozen of these gigantic 
white caterpillars following each other, loaded with 
goods for McCarty, or Wright, or Iledderly, or Ilan- 
naman, or Justin Smith, and driven by Clem Peery, 
Bill Stuck, his brother Perry, Sam llitchey and his 
brother Arnold, Wash Norwood, or Charley O'Neal, 
a brother of the noted criminal lawyer Hugh O'Neal, 
or some of the teaming fraternity, who took the place 
of the railroads, engines, and trains of to-day. They 
rarely took anything away, so the trip one way had 
to pay for both. Our exports usually went out afoot. 
Hog driving was almost a separate occupation forty 
years ago and before, and all the time till railroads 
came. It was a slow, cold, wearisome business, 
for it could only be done in winter ; was usually 
done to Cincinnati; the roads were rough, the way 
long, and the night was consumed in feeding the 
" grunting herd." Wagons sometimes followed to 
take care of the lame and exhausted, or what are 
now called "slow" hogs. The hog drover, in his 
normal night condition, was covered with the slop 
of thawing roads, tired, cross, and hungry. In 
this condition the late Oliver H. Smith carried to 
Cincinnati with his drove of hogs the news of his 
own election to the United States Senate. The 
elder John Wood drove horses to New Orleans in 
the same fashion, but less unpleasantly. He was 



the only trader in Indianapolis in that line or that 
direction. 

John Wood, who was of Scotch-Iri.sh parentage, 
was born July 25, 1784, in Orange County, N. Y., 
where his boyhood was spent in school or in various 
active pursuits. He married, in 180G, Miss Rachel 
Brown, and had children, — Daniel B. and Rachel 
(Mrs. George Myers), both of whom died in Lan- 
caster, Ohio, in 1832, and one whose death occurred 
in infancy. He married a second time, in 1812, 
Miss Sarah West, of Brown County, Ohio, to whom 
wore born children, — Eleanor (Mrs. Thomas M. 




.1(111 N WOOD. 

Smith;, John M., Phebe ( Mrs. M. A. Daugherty), 
Mary (Mrs. Robert L. Browning), Martha (Mrs. E. 
K. Foster), Cornelia (Mrs. R. L. Browning), and 
William E. Mr. Wood early became a dealer in 
horses, and continued this business first in New 
York State and later in Kentucky, to which State 
he removed. While residing in Maysville, in the 
latter State, he took horses in large numbers to the 
New Orleans market, and was the first man from 
Kentucky to engage in this enterprise. In Septem- 
ber, 1834, Mr. Wood made Indianapolis his resi- 
dence, having for a brief period resided in Lancaster, 
Ohio, and purchased a farm of four hundred and 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



153 



eighty acres, most of which is now embraced within 
the city limits. He continued his business in Indi- 
anapolis, and became a large shipper of horses to 
other localities. He also opened an extensive livery- 
and sales stable, to which his son John succeeded in 
1840. and has since transferred to his son, Horace 
F. Wood. Mr. Wood was in politics a firm and 
uncompromising Whig, but not an oflBce-sceker, his 
time and attention having been entirely absorbed in ' 
the management of his extended private business. 
He was, however, active in the political field, and j 
eager for the success of his party. He was a mem- 
ber of the order of Free and Accepted Masons, 
which he joined at an early day in Kentucky, as 
also of the Independent Order of Odd-Fellows. 
His death occurred Jan. 6, 1847. in his sixty-third 
year. Two of his children, John M. and William 
E., still reside in Indianapolis. 

Among the merchants of this primitive period of 
transportation were Lawrence M. Vance and David 
S. Beaty (of the firm of Vance & Beaty), both 
dead now after lives of honorable activity, cut off in 
their prime. 

Lawrence Martin Vance was the youngest of 
nine children of Capt. Samuel Colville Vance, who 
for many years held the responsible position of pay- 
master of the Northwestern Territory, with head- 
quarters at Fort Washington, now Cincinnati. He 
subsequently removed to a locality on the Ohio 
River which he named Lawrenceburg, after his 
wife's maiden name. His wife, Mary Morris Law- 
rence, mother of Lawrence M. Vance, was a grand- 
daughter of Gen. Arthur St. Clair. 

L. M. Vance was born at Cincinnati, July 1(5, 1816. 
His youth until eighteen years of age was spent at 
Lawrenceburg. He was a companion in boyhood ol' 
Governor A. G. Porter, who speaks of him as a 
bright, venturesome lad, with sanguine temperament 
and open, manly nature. Those traits certainly 
characterized his later life. His opportunities for 
early education were ample, but, freed from restraint 
by the death of his parents in early childhood, he 
followed his inclination to engage in active business 
pursuits and never completed a collegiate course. 
He removed in early manhood to Indianapolis. 



There he engaged in general merchandise in partner- 
ship with the late Hervey Bates, whose eldest daugh- 
ter, Mary J. Bates, he married in 1838. 

With the first internal improvements in Indiana 
he became interested in railroads and railroad build- 
ing. He was an oflBcer of the first railroad to enter 
Indianapolis, and a large contractor and builder of 
one of those subsequently constructed. These en- 
terprises occupied the remainder of his active busi- 
ness life. He possessed a very large share of 
musical talent and no little culture, and was a 
member of the first choir in the city, that in Mr. 
Beech er's church. 

From the first agitation of the " irrepressible con- 
flict" he was an ardent Republican, and a most zeal- 
ous supporter of the principles subsequently estab- 
lished by that party. He sent three sons to the war 
in defense of the Union, and himself was active and 
earnest in the cause, being intrusted with many im- 
portant commissions by the War Governor. His 
death, from pleurisy, occurred in March, 1863. His 
name is perpetuated in one of the largest business 
blocks in the city, erected by Mrs. Vance since his 
death. 

Mr. Vance possessed a large, whole-souled, emo- 
tional nature, and Christian faith and work was a 
pleasure as well as a duty with him. The charac- 
teristics of his nature were those that came under 
obedience to the higher law of morals with natural 
ease and grace. 

Socially, his wit and humor made him a most 
agreeable companion ; his intelligence and good sense 
made him an instructive one. Warm-hearted, kind, 
afiectionate, a stranger to malice, he was the life of 
every circle in which he moved. He was a true 
friend, an affectionate father, a faithful husband, an 
upright and honest man. 

David Sandford Beaty. — John R. Beaty, the 
father of the subject of this sketch, was born Dec. 
8, 1782, and married Elizabeth Sandford, born May 
4, 1791. The birth of their son, David Sandford, 
occurred Dec. 31, 1814, in Brookville, Ind., 
where the years of his childhood were spent. After 
obtaining the rudiments of an education, he became 
a pupil at the State University, located in Blooming- 



154 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



ton, Ind. He then determined upon a business 
career, and choosing Indianapolis as a promising 
field for professional and business undertakings, he 
became an employe of Hervey Bates, Esq., and re- 
mained with that gentleman until his later con- 
nection with L. M. Vance in the establishment of 
a general dry-goods business. He was one of the 
chief promoters of the scheme for lighting the city 
with gas, assisted in the organization of the gas com- 
pany, and was for many years its efficient secretary. 
Mr. Beaty then established a general business agency 
for the collection of debts, the settlement of decedents' 
estates, and the exercise of guardianship. 

These duties absorbed his time and attention and 
called him much into the Probate Court, in which 
he had extensive business connections. His ability 
and undoubted integrity soon threw upon him a 
large responsibility, and. in the special department 
which he controlled, so increased his labors as to 
make serious inroads upon his health, which was 
at no time robust. The trusts confided to him 
were often of the most important and delicate nature, 
requiring the greatest fidelity and keen business per- 
ception. The records of the county indicate how 
faithfully they were di.scharged, and many widows 
and orphans recall with gratitude the scrupulous 
manner in which their interests were guarded. Mr. 
Beaty also for a while engaged in farming pursuits, 
but not to the exclusion of other matters of greater 
import. He was one of the first to introduce and 
encourage the system of public schools, and an early 
member of the School Board of Indianapolis. He 
was in politics first a Whig and later a firm adherent 
of the principles of the Republican party. In poli- 
tics, as in other matters, he was a man of profound 
convictions, which led him to be regarded as a strong 
partisan. He was in religion a supporter and mem- 
ber of the Christian Church. Mr. Beaty was mar- 
ried, on the 25th of October, 1842, to Miss Nancy 
Singleton, daughter of Dr. John Sanders, of Indian- 
apolis, and had eight children, of whom four survive. 
Mr. Beaty's death occurred Jan. 17, 1875, in his 
sixtieth year. He was regarded as " an honorable, 
upright man, whose life was pure and whose repu- 
tation was as bright as burnished silver." 



As before intimated, the early (Stores of the city 
mixed up groceries and dry-goods always, and it 
was thirty years or more before the separation was 
made complete and a customer had no reason to 
expect to find salt and silk, coffee and calico in the 
same house. When the separation was made, and 
hardware and groceries were kept to themselves, 
among the first In the enterprise of maintaining an 
unmixed grocery stock was John W. Holland, and in 
the similar maintenance of hardware was Abram Bird. 

John W. Holland is the son of John Holland, 
who was of Southern birth, and resided successively 




in Maryland, Virginia, Ohio, and Indiana. Re- 
moving to the latter State in 1816, he settled in 
Franklin County, and engaged in the trade of a 
grocer. In 1825, Johnson County, Ind., became his 
residence, from whence he removed to Bartholomew 
County, and in 1827 he became a citizen of Indian- 
apolis, where he remained until his death in 1865, 
in his eighty-eighth year. He was married to Sarah 
Crisfield, and had children, — George B., Nancy H., 
John W., David S., Samuel J., Rebecca E., and two 




D. S. BEATY. 




^^^^a^^ /<ilcw(^ 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



155 



who died in infancy. Jolin W., their second sod, 
was horn in Wellsburg, Brook Co., W. Va., Oct. 23, 
1810, and early removed with his parents to Franklin I 
County, Ind., where, after receiving a plain education, 
he served an apprenticeship in the printing business 
with Rev. Augustus D. Jocelyn, at Brookville, in the j 
above county. In 1829 he removed to Lawrence- j 
burg, and pursued his trade until the following year, 
when Indianapolis became bis home. Here he en- 
gaged as clerk in the store of A. W. Russell & Co., 
at one hundred and twenty dollars per year and his 
board, and was thus employed until 183G, when he , 
became a partner, and continued a member of the i 
firm until 1839, when the business was closed. In i 
1842 he entered the establishment of William Sheets ; 
& Co. as clerk, and in 1847 began the commission 
grain business under the firm-name of Blythe & 
Holland. Connected with it was the jobbing of 
groceries, which was continued until 1850, when the 
firm removed their stock to the corner of Washing- 
ton and Pennsylvania Streets, and conducted an ex- 
clusively grocery jobbing business. This was con- 
ducted under various firm-names until 18*77, when 
the disasters of the panic, together with enfeebled 
health, occasioned Mr. Holland's retirement. He, 
however, still maintained his character for integrity 
and honor by liquidating all his indebtedness. It 
was proverbial that in all his business transactions 

" his word was as good as his bond." Mr. Holland I 

. 1 
is in politics a Republican, though not an active 

worker in the political ranks. He is in his religious 
affiliations a member of the Methodist Episcopal 
Church, having for fifty-two years identified his name 
with the Old Wesley Chapel, in Indianapolis, and 
continued his relations with that church until his 
later connection with the Roberts Park Methodist 
Episcopal Church. He has at various times filled I 
the positions of class-leader, exhorter, local deacon, 
and local elder. Mr. Holland was. in 1834, married 
to Miss Nancy A., daughter of William Farquar, of 
Louisville, Ky., to whom were born seven children, 
the survivors being Charles Edward, Theodore F., 
Francis R., John H., and Edmonia M. Mrs. Hol- 
land died in 1848, and he was a second time mar- 
ried, in 1849, to Eliza J. Beckwith, daughter of' 



Joseph Roll, of Marion County, whose children are 
Pamelia H., Benjamin B., and Willie G. 

Abr.\m Bird. — Henry Bird, the father of Abram, 
was a native of Virginia. His wife still survives, in 
the eighty-eighth year of her age. Their son Abram 
was born Nov. 8, 1817, on a farm near Shelbyville, 
Ky., from whence, after some years devoted to farm 
labor, interspersed with limited educational advan- 
tages, he removed to Indianapolis, at that early 
period but a small village. His first business expe- 
rience was as a clerk in a hardware-store, where by 
industry and economy he. after several years of ser- 
vice, accumulated sufficient means to establish himself 
in the same business near the northeast corner of 
Washington and Illinois Streets. At this time 
Washington (then called Main) Street was not 
adorned with shade-trees, Mr. Bird having been the 
pioneer in the planting of trees in this locality. 
This disinterested act called forth the warmest com- 
mendation from the editor of the Sentinel, who pre- 
sented him, as a tribute of regard, a year's subscrip- 
tion to the paper. Mr. Bird developed early in life 
unusual business capacity, which with assiduous de- 
votion to his various enterprises secured a compe- 
tence, with which he retired about the beginning of 
the late war. Though not directly associated with 
any religious organization, he manifested a keen in- 
terest in church enterprises, and frequently contributed 
toward the erection of churches and the furtherance 
of religious causes. In politics he was an ardent 
Whig until the dissolution of that party, when he 
espoused the principles of the Democratic party, of 
which he was in later years a zealous defender. He 
was in November, 1843, married to Miss Ann Maria, 
daughter of George Norwood, of Indianapolis, to 
which union two children were born, William F. and 
Georgia (Mrs. Goldsberry). The death of Mr. Bird 
occurred Oct. 20, 1881, at his home in Indianapolis, 
at the age of sixty- four years. 

Although all inward transportation was so largely 
done by wagons, and wholly by them after the first 
decade of the settlement, a considerable amount was 
done by keel-boats up to that time, while all exporta- 
tion of any consequence was done by flat-boats, as 
related in the earlier part of this work. Of the 



156 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



extent and character of the commerce of that day 
some notion may be obtained from a report in the 
Journal oi 1827. The total "imports" of the year 
amounted to about ten thousand dollars, embracing 
chiefly seventy-six kegs of tobacco, two liundred bar- 
rels of flour, one hundred kegs of powder, four thou- 
sand five hundred pounds of spun yarn, and two hun- 
dred and thirteen barrels of whiskey, besides seventy- 
one barrels made here. Except this statement we 
have little account of the early commerce of the city, 
and no means of making comparisons or estimating 
advances from one period to another. But in one 
of the earliest copies of a daily paper published in 
Indianapolis, dated Jan. 16, 1843, — the earliest daily 
was but a year older, — there is an interesting indica- 
tion of the business of that time in the advertise- 
ments. Though irrelevant to this particular topic, it 
is relevant to the general history to notice here the fact 
that legal advertisements were published in this paper 
for Morgan, Hendricks, Boone, and Hancock Counties, 
— a fair indication that forty years ago neither county 
had a paper of its own. The first business adver- 
tisement is that of our pioneer artist, Jacob Cox, still 
easily the first and most emment, and his brother 
Charles, that they are selling " cooking stoves," a 
comparatively recent innovation then. " Brandreth's 
Pills" are advertised largely as for sale at the book- 
store of Charles B. Davis, still a resident here. 
Tomlinson Brothers advertise " Sand's Remedy" and 
" Dr. E. Spohn's Remedy for Sick-Headache." One of 
the brothers is still living here. Benjamin Orr adver- 
tises ready-made clothing ; he was the first to open a 
house of that kind here in 1838. E. Hedderly, a 
leading grocer then, advertises printing ink. Daniel 
Yandes, one of the leading pioneers in all enterprises, 
advertises a pocket-book, with " ten dollars and valu- 
able papers" in it, lost " during Mr. Clay's speech" 
the preceding October. Judge Blackford advertises 
his reports of the Supreme Court, cheap then, in- 
valuable now. John Lister advertises a new '■ livery- 
stable on the alley north of the Palmer House" 
(Occidental). The late William W. Weaver adver- 
tises a " cabinet wareroom." Day, Tyler & Co. ad- 
vertise bookbinding. Mr. Tyler is now a farmer 
in Perry township. Peck & Willard (Mr. Willard 



is still living) advertise a stock of the miscellaneous 
character usual at that period, — " machine cards, 
ladies' shoes, cambric linen handkerchiefs, silk shirts, 
ladies' gloves, hemp and manilla cordage, Chine silks 
for ladies' dresses ; want two thousand pounds of 
geese feathers." Craighead & Brandon, predecessors 
of Browning & Sloan, take a whole column for their 
patent medicines. E. Hedderly and Justin Smith 
take another column for their groceries. Mr. Smith 
was father-in-law of Mr. John H. B. Nowland, tiie 
well-known local author. Last of all, E. J. Peck and 
E. Hedderly advertise to farmers that they have made 
preparations '• to manufacture lard from oil, and are i 
ready to receive lard in large or small quantities ;" 
" mast-fed pork will be taken at a small difi'erence in 
price." Mr. Peck was master bricklayer on the old 
State- House, subsequently largely interested in the 
gas company here and the Vandalia Railroad, of 
which he was superintendent and president. 

Edwin J. Peck was amon^ the foremost citizens 
of Indianapolis, and actively identified with its com- 
mercial and religious interests. His birth occurred 
near New Haven., Conn., on the 16th of October, 
1806, where his life prior to his advent in Indiana 
was spent. He was on his arrival in Indianapolis 
employed in superintending the mason-work of the 
new State-House then being erected, and intended 
during the fall of 1836 to return to his native State. 
He was, however, so greatly impressed with the 
enterprise, hospitality, and extended opportunities 
offered in the capital city that he decided upon 
making it his permanent residence. Very speedily 
engaging in business, he contracted for and built 
the Branch Bank buildings at Madison, Terre 
Haute, Lafayette, and South Bend. He was a 
director of the Madison and Indianapolis Railroad in ■ 
its most prosperous days, and prominent in the pro- 
jection of the Indianapolis and Terre Haute Railroad 
(now the Vandalia Line), having given it his per- 
sonal supervision during its construction as well as 
the survey. He was elected its first treasurer, and 
afterward became its president, and was for a period 
of twenty years associated with its management. 
He was also president of the Union Railway Com- 
pany. He was for several years president of the 



I 




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CMctv_-ivo^ 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



157 



Indianapolis Gaslight and Coke Company, and for 
a long time one of the directors of the Insane Asy- 
lum. In connection with other prominent citizens 
he laid out and beautified the burial-place near the 
city known as Greenlawn Cemetery. Mr. Peek pos- 
sessed a large-hearted generosity, and manifested 
this trait in many unostentatious deed.': of kindness 
during his lifetime. Especially was this manifested 
in the substantial aid given to individuals in business 
enterprises and in encouragement to manufacturing 
interests. He was a man of strong convictions, of 
steadfast purpose where a principle was involved, 
and with courage to defend the right and combat 
the wrong. He was cautious in all business opera- 
tions, — a trait which contributed greatly to his suc- 
cessful career. In his religious convictions he was 
a Presbyterian, and a liberal contributor toward the 
erection of the Second Presbyterian Church of Indian- 
apolis, to which he made a munificent bequest on 
his death. Wabash College was also the recipient 
of a legacy of very considerable proportions, as was 
the Protestant Orphan Asylum. Mr. Peck was in 
1840 married to a daughter of Rev. John Thomp- 
son, who still survives. His death occurred Nov. 6, 
187(), soon after his seventieth birthday, leaving the 
record of a virtuous life that rendered him greatly 
beloved. 

As related in a preceding chapter, several attempts 
to establish an Exchange, or Board of Trade, or some 
similar organization were made before any succeeded. 
The late William Y. Wiley, the first real estate agent 
in the days when it meant something, tried to estab- 
lish an Auction and Stock Exchange in October, 
1853, but it died in a few weeks, and repeated attempts 
and failures preceded the present firmly-established 
Board of Trade. The present condition of the city's 
commerce is presented in the fact that the number of 
cars arriving and leaving here is about twenty thou- 
sand a week, or one million a year, of which two- 
thirds are loaded, or at least six hundred thousand, 
each carrying an average of fifteen tons. This gives 
a total tonnage in the year of nine million, equal to 
the freight of nine thousand ships carrying one thou- 
sand tons each, or about twenty-five every day of the 
year. Much of this, of course, merely passes through 



the city, but what belongs and remains here appears 
from the report of the secretary of the Board of 
Trade, which says that the importations through 
the Custom-House for the year 1882 — the last of 
which any report is ready at this time — amounted to 
§213,119, paying duties to the amount of $81,513. 
The clearances of the Clearing-House amounted to 
$101,577,523. In the wholesale trade we have the 
following summary : 

Dry-goods $6,000,000 

liroceries 6,300,000 

Hardware and iron 2,350,000 

Drugs, paints, oils, etc 2,000,000 

Boots and shoes 1,575,000 

Queensware 700,000 

Hats and caps 385,000 

Toys and fancy goods 525,000 

Confectionery 540,000 

Coffee and spices 140.000 

Clothing 420,000 

Millinery 725,000 

Saddlery and carriage goods 575,000 

Leather, findings, and belting 610,000 

Produce and commission 1,075,000 

Agricultural machinery 1,500,000 

.$2.1.420,00(1 

This was an increase of seventeen per cent, over 
the year before. Among the most prominent and 
successful of the wholesale dealers of the city may 
be named Mr. C. B. Pattison and Mr. William 
Johnson. 

Coleman B. Pattison. — The Pattisons are of 
Irish lineage. Edward Pattison, the grandfather of 
Coleman B., was a native of Kentucky, and later re- 
moved to Indiana. He married Hester Day and had 
children, twelve in number, of whom Isaac, John, 
James, Mary, Elizabeth, Sarah, Joseph D., and Nel- 
son survived. Joseph D. was born Sept. 10, 1809, 
in Kentucky, and moved in his early youth to Indi- 
ana, where he pursued the vocation of a farmer and 
speculator. Indianapolis subsequently became his 
residence, from which he repaired to Franklin town- 
ship, his present home. He married Miss Lucinda 
Mawzy, of Bourbon County, Ky., and had daughters, 
Sarah and Elizabeth, and sons, Coleman B. and 
Joseph. Coleman B. was born near Ru.?hville, in 
Rush County, Ind., April 9, 1845, on the form of his 
father. In early life he was sent to Farmers' Col- 
lege, near Cincinnati, Ohio (of which he was a trus- 



158 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



tee), where he graduated in his seventeenth year, 
taking high rank in his class. He then came to In- 
dianapolis, and became a clerk in the dry-goods and 
notion jobbing house of Crossland & Co., then doing 
business near Masonic Hall. He remained with this 
house until 18G4, one year, when it changed hands, 
and the firm of Webb, Tarkington & Co. came into 
possession. He continued with the new firm for one 
year, when another change took place, and he came 
into the house as a one-third partner, the firm-name 
then being changed to Landers, Tarkington & Patti- 
son. In 1867 this firm was succeeded by Hibben. 
Tarkington & Co., Mr. Pattison continuing with the 
house. This firm was succeeded by Messrs. Hibben, 
Kennedy & Co. in 1870. In 1875 the hou.se again 
changed hands, Mr. Pattison taking an active part- 
nership, and the firm-name being changed to Hibben, 
Pattison & Co. He continued in this position until 
July, 1880, when his interest was sold to Mr. J. W. 
Murphy. Such, in brief, is a history of Mr. Patti- 
son 's business career. 

About the year 1877, Mr. Pattison's health began 
to fail. He was sensible from the first of the nature 
of the disease that had marked him as its victim, and 
hoping for benefit from change of climate, in the fall 
of 1877 went to Florida, where he remained all 
winter. He returned and spent the summer of 187S 
looking after his business interests, and the followini: 
autumn went to Europe, remaining there until the 
spring of 1879, when he again returned. His foreign 
visit, like the others, had been of but little avail, but 
he determined to exhaust every expedient, and after 
remaining at home through the summer and autumn 
of that year, he departed for California, and prolonged 
his stay until the 20th of May. Finding that despiiu 
all he could do bis health was fast failing, he returned 
to await the inevitable result of his malady. Up to 
the very hour of his death he seemed to possess all 
those bright, quick, keen qualities that had been so 
characteristic of him through his more active life. 
Of him it has often been remarked that be was one 
of the best business men in Indianapolis. He had a 
lar^e circle of friends and acquaintances, both in and 
out of business, and by his genial temper and attractive 
qualities of mind and heart formed many attachments. 



Mr. Pattison early in life exhibited quite a taste for 
literary pursuits, and had he turned his attention in 
that direction would undoubtedly have distinguished 
himself. He wielded a graceful and facile pen, and 
has contributed numerous articles to the local press. 

Mr. Pattison was married on the 6th of June, 
1867, to Miss Sarah J. Hamilton. Their children 
are Joseph H., P]mma A., Samuel L., Day Coleman, 
and George C. The death of Coleman B. Pattison 
occurred on the 27th day of September, 1880. 

William Johnson. — Walter Johnson, the grand- 
father of William, was of German descent, and re- 
sided in Sullivan County, East Tenn., where he fol- 
lowed farming employments. He married and had 
children, — John F., Benjamin, James, Robert, Absa- 




lom, Garrett, William, Looney, Polly (Mrs. Snod- 
grass), and Betsy (Mrs. Snodgrass). Their son John 
F. was born in Sullivan County, Tenn., where he 
continued the pursuits of his father. On the 19th 
of January, 1806, he was married to Miss Nancy 
Curtin, of the same county, daughter of John and 
Margaret Snodgrass Curtin, who were both of Irish 
extraction. The children of Mr. and Mrs. Johnson 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



159 



were Susannah, born in 1807, who became Mrs. 
Moser; Margaret, born in 1809, who was Mrs. Jones; 
Walter, whose birth occurred in 1810; William; 
Eleanor C, born in 1814, who became Mrs. Parr; 
Poll; Ann, born in 1817, who was Mrs. Johnson; 
Robert, whose birth occurred in 1819 ; John C, born 
in 1824 ; Elizabeth Jane, born in 1826, who was 
Mrs. Goodrich; and Benjamin F., born in 1828. 
Mrs. Johnson died on the 13th of August, 1854, in 
Indianapolis, and Mr. Johnson November 5th, of the 
same year, in Benton County, Ind. The latter on 
his marriage removed to Hawkins County, Tenn., and 
remained twenty-six years, after which he returned 
to Sullivan County, and in 1834 made Boone County, 
Ind., his home, where he continued farming employ- 
ments until his later residence in Indianapolis. His 
son William, the subject of this biographical sketch, 
was born in Hawkins County, East Tenn., on the 29th 
of September, 1812. He enjoyed but limited ad- 
vantages of education, and early acquired a knowledge 
of farm labor, which engaged his attention during the 
remainder of his active life. He was on the 28th of 
November, 1833, married to Sarah Elizabeth, daughter 
of Lawrence and Mary Snapp, of the same State, 
who died Aug. 6, 1882, in her sixty-eighth year. 
After his marriage Mr. Johnson removed to Virginia, 
and there cultivated a farm. In 1857 he made In- 
dianapolis his home, and combined farming with 
general trading. He is still the owner of several 
farms in the vicinity of the city, and also a large 
holder of real estate in Indianapolis. A number of 
years ago Mr. Johnson retired from active business, 
though still maintaining a personal supervision over 
his varied interests. He is in politics a Democrat, 
and filled while a resident of Virginia the office of 
justice of the peace, since which time he has held no 
office. He is not identified with any religious denom- 
ination, but a willing contributor to all worthy causes. 

In the wholesale hardware trade, Mr. S. B. Carey 
and the house with which he is connected hold a 
place among the foremost in the city. 

Simeon B. Carey. — John Gary, the ancestor of 
the family in America, came from Somersetshire, 
England, about the year 1634 and joined the Plym- 
outh Colony. His name is found among the origi- 



nal proprietors and settlers in Duxbury and Bridge- 
water, the land he owned having been a part of the 
grant made by the Pockonocket Indians in 1639. 
Some of his descendants of the eighth generation 
still occupy a portion of the original tract. John 
Gary was the constable of Bridgewater in 1650, the 
year of its incorporation, and also the first town 
clerk. He married Elizabeth, daughter of Francis 
Godfrey, one of the first settlers of Bridgewater, in 
1644, to whom were born eleven children. Of tliis 
number his son John, whose birth occurred in 1045, 
married Abigail, daughter of Samuel Allen, and had 
eleven children. In the direct line of descent was 
born in 1735, in Morris County, N. J., Ezra Gary, 
the grandfather of the subject of this sketch, who 
married Lyda Thompson, and removed to Western 
Pennsylvania in 1777. Their children were Phoebe, 
Rufus, Cephas, Ephraim, Absalom, Elias, and George. 
Cephas, of this number, was born in New Jersey on 
Dec. 25, 1776, and accompanied his father to West- 
ern Pennsylvania, and subsequently to Ohio in 1790, 
stopping for a time on the Ohio near Wheeling, Va. 
From thence he repaired to a farm in Shelby County, 
Ohio, where he resided until his removal in 1840 to 
Sidney, in the same county. His death occurred at 
the latter place, at the age of ninety-four years. Mr. 
Gary was married first to Jane Williamson, to whom 
were born eight children, and second to Rhoda Je- 
rard, who was the mother of eight children. His 
son by the second marriage, Simeon B., was born 
Dec. 20, 1822, in Shelby County, Ohio, in a log 
house upon the farm of his father, where he remained 
until eighteen years of age, this period being occu- 
pied in labor upon the farm or in gaining such ad- 
vantages of education as could be obtained at the 
neighboring log school-house. His father then re- 
moved to Sidney, the county-seat, where the superior 
advantages of a grammar school were afforded. He 
soon after entered a store as clerk and acted in that 
capacity until 1844, when a copartnership was 
formed with his brother, under the firm-name of B. 
W. & S. B. Carey. He represented the firm in the 
purchase of goods in New York, being the youngest 
merchant from that locality among the many buyers 
of that period. As an illustration of the difficulties 



160 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



of travel, it may be mentioned that his route was by 
stage from Sidney to Cincinnati, and by steamer 
from thence to Brownsville, where he traveled again 
by stage over the Alleghany Mountains, and thus by 
railroad to New York. During the time of this 
partnership he, with his brothers Thomas and Jason, 
made the overland journey with pack-mules and 
horses to California, tarrying at Salt Lake City, and 
reaching Sacramento three months from the date of 
departure. They soon after removed to the moun- 
tains and engaged in traffic between Sacramento and 
the mines. In the spring of 1851, after an absence 
of twelve months, the illness of Thomas Carey occa- 
sioned their somewhat precipitate return, via Isthmus 
of Panama and New Orleans. The death of his 
partner, Benjamin W., occurred in 1851, when Sim- 
eon B. closed the business, and two years later re- 
moved to New York, where a more extended field was 
opened to him. Mr. Carey first became a clerk in the 
hardware establishment of Messrs. Cornells & Willis, 
36 Cortland Street, where, after an acceptable ser- 
vice of two years in that capacity, he in 1855 was 
made a partner, the firm becoming Cornells, Willis & 
Carey. In 1869, owing to various changes which 
had meanwhile occurred in the wholesale and jobbing 
trade, the firm was dissolved, when he removed to 
Indianapolis and again embarked in the wholesale 
and jobbing hardware business, under the firm-name 
of Layman, Carey & Co. This from a small busi- 
ness has become the most extensive and leading 
wholesale hardware establishment in the State, occu- 
pying a spacious building at 67 and 69 South Merid- 
ian Street, equipped with two hydraulic elevators. 
Their trade is not confined to the limits of Indiana, 
but extends into Ohio and Illinois. 

Mr. Carey is in politics a Republican, but not an 
active political partisan. He is in religion a sup- 
porter of the Second Presbyterian Church of Indian- 
apolis. He was married Nov. 2, 185-1, to Miss 
Lydia, daughter of Eldad and Olive King, of West- 
field, Mass. Their children are Ida Fannie, born in 
New York, May 3, 1857, who died May 25. 1857 ; 
Nellie, whose birth occurred in New York, July 14, 
1859, and her death Oct. 26, 1859; Jennie King, 
born Oct. 15, 1860, in New York ; and Samuel Cor- 



nell, born in Brooklyn, Dec. 16, 1861, now associated 
with his father in business. Jennie King was mar- 
ried Oct. 26, 1881, to O. S. Brumback, of Toledo, 
Ohio, who was born Dec. 2, 1855, in Delaware 
County, Ohio, and graduated at Princeton, N. J., in 
1877, receiving the degree of A.B., and in 1880 that 
of A.M. from the same college. He graduated at 
the Law Department of Ann Arbor University, Mich- 
igan, receiving in 1879 the degree of LL.B , when 
he located in Toledo in the practice of his profession. 

In the stove and hollow-ware trade the house of 
the late Robert L. McOuat & Co. holds a first rank, 
and continues unchanged under the management of 
his brother. 

Robert L. Mc0c.\t. — The family of McOuats 
are of Scotch ancestry. Thomas McOuat, the father 
of the subject of this biographical sketch, having in 
1830 removed from Lexington, Ky., to Indianapolis, 
lie married Miss Janette Lockerbie, who was born 
in Glasgow, Scotland, and had children, — William, 
Thomas, George, Annie, Robert L., Mary, Andrew 
W., Martha, and Jennie. Their son, Robert L., 
was born at Lexington, Ky., Aug. 8, 1827, and was 
but three years of age when Marion County became 
his home. He was educated under the tutorship of 
Thomas Gregg, William Sullivan, and James Kem- 
per, of the Marion County Seminary. At the age 
of seventeen he abandoned school to enter an ap- 
prenticeship at the tinner's trade with Samuel Wain- 
right. Having served his time as an apprentice, he 
was placed in charge of the business at the old stand 
by Mr. Wainright, who opened another store. In 
1850, during the gold excitement in California, he 
with a friend made the trip, overland, to the gold- 
mines, walking all the way from Salt Lake City, and 
carrying his provisions and baggage on his back, most 
of the time camping and traveling. Arriving in San 
Francisco, he immediately secured employment at his 
trade with one of the largest establishments, but find- 
ing the climate uncongenial he returned to Indian- 
apolis, and opened a stove and tinware store with a 
small capital. Soon finding the room too small, his 
brother George built a room on the opposite side of 
the street, which was occupied for many years under 
the firm-name of R. L. & A. W. McOuat, during 




-5'.^ %-4if.PaK'« 




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CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



161 



which time he was successful and acquired a little 
fortune. During the year 1880 he sold his interest in 
the business to his brother and partner, Andrew W. 
McOuat, to engage in the manufiicture of car-wheels, 
forming a partnership with John May, under the 
firm-name of McOuat & May, and for a period of 
two years met with success. Having sold large bills 
to a manufacturing company outside the State who 
were unfortunate in their business operations, the 
firm was compelled to suspend. Mr. McOuat subse- 
quently secured or paid all claims, and also protected 
parties who were joint indorsers on paper with him. 

In 1882 he received the nomination for clerk of 
the court of Marion County at the hands of the 
Democratic party, whose principles he supported, and 
although the county was largely Republican, lacked 
but a few votes of an election. 

He married in 1850, Ellen C. Wallace, whose 
death occurred in 1863. He was a second time 
married on the 1st of August, 1865, to Eugenia F., 
daughter of Miles W. Burford, of Missouri. Their 
children are Effie B., Robert, and Burford. Mr. 
McOuat was an active member of the Independent 
Order of Odd-Fellows. In religion he was an Epis- 
copalian, and formerly senior warden and later a 
vestryman of St. Paul's Cathedral, Indianapolis, of 
which he was one of the originators, having first sug- 
gested the organization and personally presented the 
first subscription-paper to raise necessary funds for 
the salary of the rector of the parish that afterwards 
built the cathedral, in which he continued an earnest 
worker and liberal supporter. He was a man of 
large and liberal views and indomitable energy, a 
close applicant to business, but always taking pleasure 
in fishing and hunting, of which he was very fond. 
He was strongly attached to his family and home, 
where his evenings were invariably passed. In all 
his relations, both at home and abroad, he was the 
Christian gentleman. Mr. McOuat's death occurred 
June 28, 1883, in his fifty-sixth year. 

Among the early merchants of the city whose 
stocks were not so miscellaneous as those of the dry- 
goods or general merchant were the dealers in clocks, 
watches, and jewelry, — a trade proportionally more 
important now than then, — and among the earliest of 
11 



these was Humphrey Griffith, and the most extensive 
in later years W. H. Talbott. Both have been dead 
some years now. 

Humphrey Griffith. — The parents of Mr. 
Griffith were Evan and Mary Ellis Griffith, the 
former having been a member of the Protestant 
Episcopal Church, and the latter of the Congrega- 
tional Church. Their son Humphrey was born in 
Dolgelly, Merionethshire, Wales, Dec. 23, 1791. 
His mother died when he was eleven, and his father 
when he was twenty years of age, leaving him to 
carve for himself by his own unaided efforts a 
career of independence. He served an appren- 
ticeship of seven years at his trade of watch- 
maker and clockmaker at Shrewsbury, England. 
He then worked for a time in London, and in 
the spring of 1817 emigrated to America, experi- 
encing some difficulty in embarking, owing to the 
prohibition then existing against skillful workmen 
leaving the country. Having sailed from Dublin, he 
landed in New York, and was employed first in Hunt- 
ingdon, Pa. In Pittsburgh, with two others, he 
purchased a skiff, with which he came down the 
Ohio. He settled in Lebanon, Ohio, and in 1821 
visited Indianapolis, where, at the first sale of town 
lots, he purchased property on Washington Street. 
In 1822 he left Lebanon and removed to Centreville, 
Ind., and while there made additional purchases of 
land in the vicinity of Indianapolis, to which place 
he removed in 1825, having ordered a shop built 
and ready for occupancy on his arrival, in which he 
established himself as the first clock and watch- 
maker in the city. The clock made by him for the 
old State-House fifty years ago has, it is said, never 
since run down or needed regulating. In the summer 
of 1836 he retired from business with a competency, 
which he increased by judicious investments. He 
avoided bold speculations, and scrupulously shunned 
contracting a debt. He felt great interest in the 
growth of the city, and was always prominent in 
every scheme of substantial improvement. In early 
days he was an active member of the Common Council, 
and also served for a term or more as city treasurer. 
His leading characteristics were punctuality in all 
things, great or little, and an investigating mind. 



162 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



He was a great reader and thinker, and developed 
more than ordinary mechanical ingenuity. He was 
modest and sensitive, always truthful and perfectly 
reliable. He married, March 13, 1819, Miss Jane 
Stephenson, a native of Scotland, and had nine chil- 
dren, four of whom died in infoncy, and three, John 
E., Josiah R., and Mary Isabella, in mature years. 
John E. and Josiah R. each left families. There 
are twelve grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. 
The two surviving children of Mr. and Mrs. GrifiBth 
are Pleasant H. and Mrs. Anne J. Whitehead, both 
living in Indianapolis. The eldest son, John E., 
accompanied David Dale Owen in his geological sur- 
veys in Illinois, Kentucky, and some of the Terri- 
tories. He and his brother Josiah were exemplary 
citizens. Mary was an active Christian, and a suc- 
cessful teacher in the Sunday-school of the Third 
Presbyterian Church, of which she was a member. 
Mr. GrifiBth twice vLsitcd the country of his nativity 
and the old homestead at Dolgelly in which his birth 
occurred. He was confirmed in the Protestant Epis- 
copal Church in his fourteenth year, but did not con- 
tinue his membership, though always a liberal con- 
tributor to all worthy religious causes. His death 
occurred June 2, 1870. Mrs. GriflBth's childhood 
was passed near the home of Sir Walter Scott, whom 
she distinctly remembered, and of whom she related 
many interesting reminiscences. She was a lady of 
retiring manners and disposition, quiet in her habits, 
but firm in her views of truth and duty. An active 
member of the Presbyterian Church, she was warmly 
attached to its doctrines and ordinances. Her death 
occurred July 23, 1879, in her eighty-fourth year. 
Rev. M. S. Whitehead, son-in-law of Mr. GrifiBth, 
was born in 1831, and died in 1877. He was in 
1868 licensed to preach by the Congregational Asso- 
ciation of Indiana, and was one of the founders of the 
Mayflower Church of Indianapolis, which pulpit he 
filled at times acceptably. His work was not con- 
fined to one locality, and several churches of dififerent 
denominations were established out of Sunday-schools 
organized and fostered by him. Mr. Whitehead's 
influence was wide-spread, and the desire to make 
the ministry the work of his life was completely 
realized. 



Washington Houston Talbott. — The earliest 
members of the Talbott family came from England 
and settled in Talbot County, Md. The parents of 
Washington Houston were William and Mary (Hous- 
ton) Talbott. Their son was born in the State of 
Kentucky on the 29th of March, 1817, and at an 
early age removed with his parents to Charlestown, 
Ind., where his father owned an extensive milling 
property. After enjoying ordinary advantages of 
education, he in 1835 became a resident of Indian- 
apolis, and established a jewelry and book business. 
In 1848 he married Miss Elizabeth Coram Tinker, 
daughter of Capt. William and Elizabeth Tinker, of 
Cincinnati, though formerly residents of Maysville, 
Ky. Their surviving children are William II. and 
Mary Cleves. Mr. Talbott continued the bu.siness of 
a jeweler for many years, meanwhile embarking in 
other commercial ventures. During the year 1863 he 
was elected president of the State Smking Fund, and 
subsequently filled the same oflBce in connection with 
the Indiana and Illinois Central Railroad. He was 
also president of board of trustees of the State benevo- 
lent institutions. Mr. Talbott was closely identified 
with the Democratic politics of Indiana, having for 
several years filled the ofifice of chairman of the State 
Democratic Committee. He was on successive occa- 
sions delegate at large to National Conventions. He 
was president of the Gatling Gun Company, and 
while directing the intere.sts of that company in 
Europe contracted a severe cold, which occasioned 
his death at his home in Indianapolis. 

The first extensive drug house in the town, and 
the first to put up a soda fountain, was that of Mc- 
Dougal & Dunlap, to whom succeeded the late 
William Hannaman and his partner, Caleb Scudder, 
the pioneer cabinet-maker, in whose shop the first 
Sunday-school was held. Both were largely con- 
cerned in the establishment of some of our early 
manufactures, as tobacco, wool, and oil. and Mr. 
Hannaman survived to an advanced age, dying within 
a few years past. 

William Hannaman.— The Hannaman family 
are of German nationality, Christopher, the grand- 
father of William, having been a native of Piu.-sia. 
He married Mary O'Neal, whose birthplace was Dub- 




^'/^^a^fi^^ 







fp-^. 



/f^^^i^Z'P'T-Z, 



^^f-^^>^v«'7-i^ — 



CITY OP INDIANAPOLIS. 



163 



lin, Ireland. This union traDsmitted to their descend- 
ants the sturdy qualities of both the German and 
tlie Irish races. William Hannaman, the father of 
the subject of this biographical sketch, was a resi- 
dent of Cherry Valley, N. Y., and married Mary 
Fletcher, of Harrison County, Va. Their son William 
was boru Aug. 10, 1806, at Adelphia, Ross Co., Ohio, 
and at the age of twenty-two removed to Indian- 
apolis, where, having previously acquired the trade 
of a printer, he was for several years employed in the 
oflBce of the Indiana Journal. In 1833 he em- 
barked with Caleb Scudder in the drug business, 
which was continued uninterruptedly until 1863. He 
also, with his partner, erected a cardingmachine and 
oil-mill on the arm of the canal at its junction with 
the White River, and manufactured the first flaxseed 
oil in the locality. Mr. Hannaman was for many years 
school commissioner, a director of the State Bank of 
Indiana, located at Indianapolis, trustee of the State 
University, and identified with many benevolent and 
charitable enterprises. He was made president of 
the Indiana Branch of the Sanitary Commission dur- 
ing the late war, and disposed of his interest in the 
drug business that he might devote his time and 
energies exclusively to this humane work. The ad- 
mirable management of his department and the good 
it accomplished is in a large degree due to the gra- 
tuitous and eSicient service of Mr. Hannaman, who 
on retiring from his labors in behalf of the soldiers 
was appointed by Governor Morton State military 
agent for the purpose of collecting soldiers' claims. 
In 1871 he became a member of the firm of Smith 
& Hannaman, brokers, and continued this business 
connection until his death, which occurred of pneu- 
monia, at the Hot Springs of Arkansas, on the 6th 
of December, 1880. Mr. Hannaman was married on 
the 28th of August, 1833, to Rhoda A. Luse, whose 
birth occurred Feb. 25, 1812, and her death Sep- 
tember, 1876. In the summer of 1879 he was again 
married to Mrs. A. P. Berry, who is still living. Of 
seven children but two survive their father, Henry 
G., of Indianapolis, and Mary E., of Dakota. 

Among the earlier merchants of the city were the 
late John F. Ramsay, in furniture, and Jacob S. 
Walker. 



John F. Ram.sat, retired merchant, was born in 
Lebanon, Ohio, Dec. 2, 1805. His parents, Wil- 
liam and Martha (Dinwiddle) Ramsay, were of 
Scotch descent, and born in Kentucky, their parents 
being among the earliest settlers of that State. Wil- 
liam with his family came to Indiana Territory in 
1810, landing at the site of the city of Madison, 
there being but one house erected at this early 
period, which was occupied by the ferryman. They 
settled near the site of the village of Hanover, about 
two miles from the block-house, to which they 
were compelled to resort every night for protection 
from the Indians. In 1812, the latter becoming 
very troublesome, John was sent to his grandparents, 
near Georgetown, Ky., where he remained a year. 
His boyhood was spent in helping to clear the forests 
and in farm labors, the lad being subjected to all the 
hardships and privations of pioneer life. Educational 
advantages in the new country were very limited. 
He attended school six months when in Kentucky 
and a few terms in Indiana, walking a distance of 
three miles to the school-house. At the age of sev- 
enteen he removed to Cincinnati, and was appren- 
ticed to Charles Lehman, at that time the leading 
furniture manufacturer in the West. Serving out 
his apprenticeship, he worked a year in the shop, 
after which he repaired to Louisville, and from 
thence to New Orleans and St. Louis, pursuing his 
vocation for a time in each place. Returning to 
Indiana, he carried on his trade near Madison and 
at Paris, Ind., and removed to Indianapolis May 15, 
1833. Purchasing the property adjoining the 
ground now occupied by the Occidental Hotel 
(which at that time was inclosed with a rail fence 
and was planted with corn), he erected a building, 
opened a cabinet-shop, and by close attention to 
business became the leading furniture dealer in the 
place. W^ilh the advent of railroad communication 
with Cincinnati, he abandoned manufacturing and 
dealt exclusively in furniture made at the latter 
place. After a successful career, having obtained a 
handsome competency, he retired from business in 
1870. He has been twice married, his first wife, 
Elvira (Ward) Ramsay, having died in 1846. Five 
children were born to this union, all of whom are 



164 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



now deceased. He married his second wife, Leah 
P. Malott, widow of W. H. Malott, of Salem, Ind., 
in 1848. Five children have been born to them, 
four of whom are now living. 

Mr. Ramsay was an ardent Whig during the ex- 
istence of that party. Upon its dissolution and 
the organization of the Republican party, his strong 
anti-slavery seniiments led him to become identified 
with it. He has never held any political office 
other than as a member of the Common Council, 
elected by the Whigs. He has always taken a deep 
interest in matters affi^cting the welfare and growth 
of the city, and in building and otherwise he 
has done much toward advancing its material in- 
terests. He has been a faithful and leading mem- 
ber of the Methodist Episcopal Church during his 
entire fifty years' residence in the city, and, with 
others of the early settlers, has aided in giving an 
impulse to its moral and religious sentiment, that has 
caused it to be noted as " the City of Churches." 

Jacob S. Walker. — The grandfather of Jacob 
S. Walker was a soldier of the war of the Revolu- 
tion. He married Miss Mary Hazelet, and had 
among his children a son Thomas, who married Mrs. 
Mary Rutherford, of Dauphin County, Pa., and 
had two sons, Jacob S. and James, and two daugh- 
ters. Susan and Eliza. Jacob S. Walker was born 
in January, 1814, at Harrisburg, Pa., where the 
early years of his life were spent. At the age of 
sixteen, after enjoying such advantages of education 
as the common schools offered, he determined to 
render himself independent by acquiring a trade, 
and became master of the carpenter's craft. In 1835 
he removed to Indianapolis as a builder and contractor, 
and during a period of ten years erected many impor- 
tant edifices and built dwellings, which were, afterward 
sold by him. He then embarked in the lumber 
business, and continued thus engaged for twenty 
years, after which he retired from active employ- 
ments. Mr. Walker was a man of modest demeanor 
and of humane instincts, who cared little for mere 
display and esteemed highly the more substantial 
pleasures to be derived from books. He was a ju- 
dicious reader of the best literature, and possessed a 
mind well informed on all subjects. He conferred 



upon his children opportunities for education, and 
implanted in them by precept and example the 
principles which guided him through life. In 
polities he was a Whig and later became an ardent 




^^^a^e^crf^^ ^^/A&Z-A^: 



Republican, but never sought or accepted ofiice at the 
hands of his party. In religion he was a stanch Pres- 
byterian and an officer of Rev. Henry Ward Beecher's 
church when a pastor in Indianapolis. He received 
the contract for the erection of this edifice, as also 
for the First Protestant Episcopal Church in the city. 
He was at an early period a deacon of the Second 
Presbyterian Church. He was also a member of 
the Independent Order of Odd- Fellows. Mr. Walker 
was married in 1837 to Mrs. Sarah A. Landis, of 
Harrisburg, Pa., to whom were born children, 
Thomas R. and Mary F., wife of George Knodle, a 
son of Adam Knodle, an early shoe merchant in the 
city. He married again Mary A., only child of 
Thomas Lupton, who is of English descent and 
came from Chester County, Pa., to Indianapolis in 
1835. The children of this marriage are Jacob L., 
married to Miss Keziah Rutherford, who is of 




.„^*ie^^*^ 



Eri^ 'iyA.KFIJJ:<i"^ 




/^h-T^?^ 



^^ ^ 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



165 



Scotch-Irish extraction ; Edwin J. ; Louis A., who 
married Miss Eugenia, daughter of Dr. D'Acuel, of 
St. Louis; Robert P., and Harry L. The death 
of Mr. Walker occurred May 16, 1870, in his fifty- 
seventh year. 

Dealing in real estate may be fairly enough classed 
among the subjects covered by the title of commerce, 
and in real estate the dealings have been very large. 
In 1873, during the period of speculative excitement, 
the sales amounted to $32,579,256. Since that time 
no record has been kept of them that will enable a 
comparison to be made. In a year or two later, in fact, 
the reaction came, and real estate was hard to sell and 
not always easy to give away if it had no special ad- 
vantages. Of the amount of sales in the past year 
or the year before no official statement is made, but 
the reports in the daily papers show that they ranged 
from five thousand dollars to thirty thousand dollars 
a day, or an annual total of probably five million dol- 
lars. Among the first of our real estate dealers was 
the late James H. McKernan. 

James H. McKernan was born at Wilmington, 
Del., in December, 1815. In his seventh year he 
removed with his family to Muskingum County, Ohio, 
where his father settled on a small farm of fifty 
acres, subsequently increased to seventy-five. He 
was able only to enjoy the merest rudiments of edu- 
cation. At the age of seventeen he was left by the 
death of his father the sole support of the family, 
with no means other than the farm. But he was a 
brave-hearted boy in the battle of life. He worked 
hard, and rented land to eke out the inadequate yield 
of his own land. Among his neighbors his reputa- 
tion for business capacity, promptness, integrity, and 
prudence was most enviable. On attaining his ma- 
jority he had paid all his father's debts, erected a 
valuable dwelling, and accumulated money in addi- 
tion with which to start in business. Heroism and 
self-dependence, combined with grasp of mind and 
energy, were inborn elements of his character. In 
1836 he began trading iu produce, and in 1837 em- 
barked with a partner in mercantile pursuits at La- 
fayette, Ohio. In 1842 he established himself in the 
foundry business in the same town, and in 1845 
removed to Indianapolis, where he began his active 



career with Jesse Jones as a dealer in dry-goods. 
But his tastes and talents inclined strongly to inven- 
tions and the mechanic arts. Whatever his imme- 
diate occupation mechanical constructions, improve- 
ments, and suggestions were always floating in his 
mind, several valuable inventions having been pat- 
ented. A man of his energy quickly sought and 
created the widest field of action. He speculated in 
real estate, bought whole forests, built saw-mills to 
cut them, and erected streets of cheap but serviceable 
houses, extending Indianapolis on the southwest far 
beyond the dreams of its inhabitants. In the prose- 
cution of his real estate and other enterprises, how- 
ever, Mr. McKernan did not lose sight of a subject 
which had led him into many expensive experiments, 
— the reduction of iron ore by means of ordinary 
Western coal. He had satisfied himself of its prac- 
ticability, and detected the defects in the operation 
of those who had attempted it and failed. So certain 
was the result in his mind that he determined to 
settle the question finally and fully. In the spring of 
1867 he obtained the abandoned furnace of the Pilot 
Knob Company, at St. Louis, and after changing its 
construction made experiments which were completely 
successful, first-class iron having been produced. This 
was a great success for Mr. McKernan. He had 
fully realized his hopes, though every one before him, 
with vastly more capital and better opportunities, but 
lacking his original theories and combinations, had 
failed. He had shown St. Louis a new source of 
business and prosperity of immense value. He found 
it necessary, however, to obtain additional means or 
abandon his enterprise. The St. Louis Board of 
Trade and several large capitalists urged him to 
remain and prosecute his work. Additional means 
were promised him, and under the promise of the 
Board of Trade and prominent citizens the work of the 
furnace was in 1867 resumed, and the results, after 
inconveniences resulting from his business associa- 
tions, were such as amazed everybody, and made iron- 
smelting with cheap Western coal a fixed fact. This 
success, however, did not in a pecuniary sense profit 
Mr. McKernan. He sacrificed all his prospective 
gains, and returned home no richer than he departed. 
St. Louis has reaped the benefit of his investigations, 



166 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



and the iron industry has risen to be one of tlie prime 
elements of her prosperity. A leading journal stated 
that, " in view of all the facts, it becomes St. Louis 
to decide fairly what acknowledgment she owes to 
him who has achieved the great result in making 
iron, and whom she by failing in her promise forced 
to sacrifice all his interests and prospects in his own 
discovery." Mr. McKernan returned to Indianapolis, 
and at once embarked extensively in real estate oper- 
ations. While liberal and indulgent with those in- 
debted to him, he was particularly prompt in the 
payment of all demands against himself His daily 
life was marked by a ceaseless activity. Bold and 
confident in his temperament, he inspired others with 
like feelings. The praise of far-.seeing men of sound 
judgment was ever awarded to him, and the success 
that crowned his efforts was of a character to consti- 
tute a public as well as a personal benefit. In all 
personal relations he was social, frank, and courteous, 
and at his home hospitable and cheerful. In his 
religious views he was a member of the Roman 
Catholic Church. Mr. McKernan was married to 
Miss Susan Hewitt, whose children were David S., 
Lewis, Joseph V., William E., and Leo A. The 
death of James H. McKernan occurred in January, 
1877, at his home in Indianapolis. 

The lumber trade of Indianapolis is a very im- 
portant part of the total, the retail trade of 1882 
amounting to 81,500,000. From the general state- 
ment of business it would appear that the total 
receipts of lumber for the year 1882 were 124,000,- 
000 feet, and the shipments 66,000,000. Saw-mills 
cut 22,000,000 feet of veneer that year. 

A specialty of the lumber trade is the trade in 
" hard wood" lumber, especially black walnut. Until 
the close of the war not much was done in this direc- 
tion, or in any general lumber business. For the 
first thirty-five years of the city's history pine lum- 
ber was little used. Oak made the frame-work of 
houses, and poplar the weather-boarding, shingles, 
and finishing. But slowly, after the development of 
the railroad system, pine began to be used in the 
place of poplar, and later in the place of oak. Lum- 
ber-yards began to figure among the forms of trade 
that required capital and made money for the city. 



By the close of the war the lumber business had 
grown into first-class importance. There were a 
dozen or more large yards in difl'erent parts of the 
city, some of them with mills to cut logs, some to 
cut veneers, and some with planing-mills, and sash- 
and door-factories connected with them. The walnut 
lumber trade came later. In early times the black 
walnut was about the worst tree the farmer had to 
deal with. It was too brittle for good lumber, and 
too hard to be cheaply sawed. It was not good fuel, 
and did not make durable rails. In fact it was a 
nuisance. Now it is no uncommon thing to find a 
single walnut-tree that is worth more money than the 
whole farm it stands on. More than a thousand dol- 
lars worth of veneers have been cut from a single 
tree and left a considerable part of it. Jjven as late 
as 1868 there were hundreds of farmers and business 
men in Indiana and Indianapolis who were unin- 
formed of the value of walnut wood and threw it 
away as refuse or burned it as rubbish. 

A saw-miller in Indianapolis about that time had 
collected quite a heap of walnut knots from the logs 
he had sawed, and had thrown them aside to burn in 
his boiler furnace when he could get time to split 
them. An agent of an Eastern lumber dealer saw 
them and the ill-posted sawyer sold them for fifty 
cents apiece. He was a little worried a day or two 
afterwards when he learned that they would have 
been cheap at ten dollars apiece if they were sound 
and well twisted in grain. The great demand for 
this kind of lumber for furniture, both in this coun- 
try and Europe, has thinned it out very greatly, and 
the trade in it is declining. It is impossible to give 
any idea of the development or decline of the walnut 
lumber trade, because no separate account or report 
has been made of it. In 1874 the Board of Trade 
report says the total receipts of lumber were 119,- 
800,000 feet, of which about 60,000,000 was walnut 
lumber. The indications are that the total has never 
been so large since. The trade is still large, how- 
ever, and a large part of it is in logs brought here to 
be sawed up. There are ten mills here sawing 
walnut and hard woods, and eighteen dealers who 
handled in the year last reported in full, 1882, to 
December 31st, 38,000,000 feet. This shows a de- 




En4alyB.B.Han 8. S<ms. 62 Khan S'KXfiOTi iHirto ly Biafy. 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



167 



cline from 1873 of more than one-third. The pine 
lumber business, however, has kept on a steady ad- 
vance with other commercial interests, and occupies a 
score or more yards large and small, besides those 
attached to factories as stores of material. Oak ap- 
pears to hold its own as firmly as it did in the last 
generation. The demand for it as building timber 
has declined greatly, but it has been made up fully 
by the demand for it to make cross-ties for railway 
tracks. Hickory, birch, and sugar have never been 
accounted or used as timber, and elm but little more. 
They went for fuel when it was deemed worth while, 
and now good, well-seasoned wood of these varieties 
is a valuable product. Coal is slowly displacing 
wood, but has not done it yet. The amount of coal 
brought to the city appears from the partial report of 
the secretary of the Board of Trade to have been 
about 400, OUO tons for the year ending Deo. 31, 
1882, the last of which any report has been made. 

Among the articles reported for the last six months 
of 1882 — the last oflBcial statement published — are 
20,000 bales of cotton, or 40,000 for the year ; 40 
car-loads of eggs, estimating in the same way ; 800,- 
000 barrels of flour ; 801 tons of hides — the total 
value of all hides and pelts for the year is put at 
$1,500,000; 64,000 cars of general merchandise; 
46 cars of poultry — annual value of poultry, 81,000,- 
000 ; 40,000 tons of ice ; 40,000 tons of provisions ; 
36,000 barrels of salt ; 640 cars of shingles ; 50,000 
barrels of starch ; 2600 cars of stone ; 26,000 bar- 
rels of tallow ; 43,000 hogsheads of tobacco ; 300,- 
000 rabbits shipped East and sold here in 1883 and 
winter of 1884. 

In grain the trade has been steadily growing for a 
number of years. The receipts of wheat for the year 
ending April, 1883, were about 8,000,000 bushels ; of 
corn, 17,000,000, as appears from the report of Secre- 
tary Blake. In 1872 a company was formed to build 
and conduct an elevator, and that year erected the 
first one west of the river on the St. Louis Railroad. 
It has a capacity of about 350,000 bushels. In 1874, 
Mr. F. Rusch, in association with two or three others, 
built Elevator B, the second one, with a capacity of 
300,000 bushels. It was entirely destroyed by fire 
in June, 1875, but rebuilt at once in better shape. 



and has been constantly busy since. Some three 
years ago, about the time of the completion of the 
Indianapolis, Decatur and Springfield Railroad, a 
third elevator was built by the company close to the 




Corner of Marylaud and Tennessee Streets 



track, in the manufacturing suburb of Hanghsville, 
with a capacity fully equal to either of the older 
ones. Besides these there are several smaller in the 
city. 

Since 1877 the stock-yards have formed a con- 
spicuous element of the city's commerce. They 
were built by the Belt Road Company on one hun- 
dred and ten acres of the old " Bayou," or " McCarty 
farm," on the Vincennes Railroad, at the southern 
border of West Indianapolis, about two miles from 
the Union Depot. In convenience of arrangement, 
amplitude of supply, and completeness of shelter and 
means of shipment, they are pronounced by those 
familiar with all the stock-yards of the country un- 
surpassed by any, and unequaled by any but one or 
two. On the northeast corner of the grounds are the 
engine-house and machine-shop, the blacksmith-shop, 
the coal platform, and the pumping engine which 
forces water from a well about ninety feet deep into 



168 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



two large elevated tanks or reservoirs, whence it is 
distributed all over the premises. At the north end, 
to the west of these buildings, is the residence of the 
superintendent ; south of this, about four hundred 
feet, is the " Stock-Yard Exchange," a large, hand- 
some, three-story brick building, with a front of about 
one hundred and twenty feet, and a roar building, 
making a total depth of over one hundred and fifty 
feet. It is occupied as a hotel in the icur building 
and the upper stories of the front, and as oflSce^of 
stock-dealers on the ground-floor. On the east of this 
is a large storage-house for hay and corn and stock- 
feed generally. On the west is a large stable for the 
finer grades of horses. Directly south of the Ex- 
change, and separated mostly by a broad passage-way 
of forty feet or so, are the stock stables, built of red 
cedar posts set deep in the ground, and planked up the 
sides and ends high enough to make a perfect shelter 
for the stock. On the roof of each is an attic, with 
lattice sides, the full length of the stable. There are 
five of these, separated from each other by a narrow 
passage for stock, fifteen feet or so in width. They are 
about a thousand feet long by one hundred and seventy- 
five wide, with broad passage-ways down the middle 
and smaller lateral ones between the divisions. Stock 
is received on the west side, where there are railway 
tracks coDnecting with the Belt extending along the- 
entire length of the stables. From the receiving 
platform, which is covered with pens, a passage leads 
to the scale-room, where the animals are weighed 
and driven off to their quarters. The western stables 
are chiefly appropriated to hogs. When shipped 
away the stock is driven to the east side, where a 
platform the length of the stables, amply provided 
with shipping-pens, enables a train to bo loaded in a 
ver}' few minutes. 

LARGEST RECEIPTS IN ONE DAT, 1882. 

December 9 8809 (Hogs, SS09). 

October 28 2026 ^Cattle, 238). 

October 28 4184 (Sbeep, 1534). 

May 10 316 (Horses, 26). 

LARGEST SHIPMENTS IN ONE DAT, 18S2. 

January 4 4125 (Hogs, 4115). 

October 28 1325 (Cattle, 794). 

M:iy20 4194 (Sheep, 1856). 

■I'll.v 4 281 (Horses, 149). 



Their business in 1882, the last year of which 
any statement has been made, is summed up as fol- 
lows : Hogs, 5,319,611 ; cattle, 6-40,363 ; sheep, 849,- 
936 ; horses, 50,795 ; shipments, hogs, 2,298,895 ; 
cattle, 535,195 ; sheep, 780,395 ; horses, 48,361 ; 
Indianapolis delivery, hogs, 3,020,913 ; cattle, 106,- 
178 ; sheep, 70,543 ; horses, 2533. 

Until the completion of the Madison Railroad no 
business was done oflF Washington Street, except that 
a year or two a little family grocery was kept in a 
one-story brick on Indiana Avenue, at the corner of 
Tennessee Street. In 1847, however, commission- 
houses and pork-packing houses began to be estab- 
lished about the Madison Depot. Foundries and 
shops started up in convenient openings, and during 
the war groceries, drug-stores, hotels, saloons, and 
eating-houses were put wherever they could go. 
Thus came business diverted from Washington 
Street. With this change, or a little preceding it, 
came the separation of different classes of merchan- 
dise into diflferent establishments. 

Below is given the annual live-stock report of the 
Indianapolis Stock-yards, prepared by W. P. Ijams, 
general .superintendent. It will be noticed that as 
compared with the year 1882 there was a handsome 
increase in business, while it fell short of the business 
done in the years 1878, 1879, 1880, and 1881. The 
table given below is self-explanatory : 

RECEIPTS. 



Hogs. Cattle. Sheep. Horses. 



Total for the year 1883 931,121 121.448 

Total for the year 1SK2 65.1,597 114,746 

Totiil for the year 1881 |l.l-,i9,8H4 144,144 

Total for thi- year 1880 'I,:i21,;i76 13:i,655 

Tolal for the year 1879 1.12:i,4()9 125,723 

Total for the year 1878 | 98(i,639 118,945 

One month and 20 days, 1877 104,696 4,150 



Total Not. 12, 1877, to Dec. 31, 1883. 6,260,732 761,811 l,r07,696 67,545 



254,653 
288.698 
225,622 
142.7J5 
111,927 
76.107 
4,857 



18,800 
15.987 

9,288 

9,358 

6,912 

685 



SHIPMENTS. 



Hogs. I Cattle. I Sheep. iHoises. 



Total for the year 1883 

Total for the year 1882 

Total for the year 1881 

Total lor the year 1880 

Total for the year 1879 

Total for the year 1878 

One month and 20 days, 1877.. 



699,514 

464.953 

2M,095 

8,027 



102.342 
9 1. 142 
120,611 
11CI,.559 
104,»45 
105,117 
3,021 



Total Nov. 12, 1877, to Dec. 31, 1883. 2,742,7951 637,637 



237,612 17,725 

2G.S.K95 15.097 

2113,246 8.9110 

132,904 8.901 

100,879 9,031 

69,8971 6,770 

4,772 662 



1,018,005 66,086 




a..-'^0'^'>^--z^zy i 



J^ 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



169 



INDIANAPOLIS DELIVERY. 



Total for the year 1883 487,221 19.106 

Total for the v™r 1882 ■ 329,008 24,714 

Tot.il for the yeiir 1881 492,:i74 2:t,53H 

Total for the year 1880 I 721,862, 22,096 

Total for the year 1879 658,456 20,S78| 

Tolal for the year 1878 i 722,423 14,328| 

One month and 20 days, 1877 96,790 629 



14,041 1,075 

21.003 966 

22,376 665 

9,821 387 

11,048 327 

6,210 165 



85 



23 



Total Nov. 12, 1S77, to Dec. 31, 1S83. 3,508,134, 125,284 84,584 3,608 



LARGEST RECEIPTS IN ONE DAY, 1883. 

December 4 12,775 (Hogs, 12,775). 

February 17 1,705 (Cattle, 567). 

September S 3,065 (Sheep, 814). 

April 29 238 (Horses, 66). 

LAHGEST SHIPMENTS IN ONE DAY, 1883. 

December 19 4,655 (Hogs, 3,352). 

August 4 1.902 (Cattle, 1,902). 

September S 3,460 (Sheep, 2,446). 

July 1 221 (Horses, 87). 



CHAPTER VIII. 

CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS.— (Coii(///Hei?.) 
THE BENCH AND BAR. 

In the general history is related the organization 
of the county and the early sessions of the first court. 
No more need be said here than that Judge William 
W. Wick was elected the first judge by the Legisla- 
ture at Corydon in the winter of 1821-22, and 
Hervey Bates appointed sheriff by Governor Jen- 
nings early in 1822. Both were residents of Con- 
nersville, and came here together in the early spring 
of 1822. The circuit consisted of Marion County, 
enlarged for judicial purposes by a considerable por- 
tion of the territory now composing Johnson, Hamil- 
ton, Boone, Madison, and Hancock Counties, with 
the following earlier-organized counties : Monroe, 
Morgan, Lawrence, Hendricks, Green, Owen, Rush, 
Decatur, Bartholomew, Jennings, and Shelby. The 
first session of the court was held at the house of 
Gen. Carr, the State agent, on Delaware Street 
opposite the court-house, Sept. 26, 1822. Judge 
Wick presided, with Eliakim Harding and James 
Mcllvain as associates. James M. Ray was clerk 
by election the previous April, and Hervey Bates 



sheriff by regular election in August succeeding his 
appointment. Calvin Fletcher was the first prose- 
cutor by appointment. Up to 1824, when the 
court-house was so far completed as to be available 
for the sessions, the first meeting was held at Carr's 
house, as the law bad designated that place, and 
then an adjournment was made to Crumbaugh's on 
Washington Street, — or the place in the woods where 
the street was to run, — just west of the future line 
of the canal. We have no record of the lawyers in 
attendance at that first session of the first court of 
the county, and there is no certainty that there were 
any belonging to the town except Mr. Fletcher, the 
pro.secutor, and Harvey Gregg, one of the founders 
of the Western Censor, the predecessor of the 
Journal. Mr. Fletcher long held a prominent place 
at the bar, and only left it to take the presidency of 
the Indianapolis branch of the State Bank. 

Hon. Calvin Fletcher. — Robert Fletcher, the 
progenitor in America of the Fletcher family, was 
probably born in Yorkshire, in 1592. He settled at 
Concord, Mass., in 1630, with a family consisting of 
a wife, two sons, — Luke and William, — and one 
daughter. In the direct line of descent from this 
pioneer was born, on the 4th of February, 1798, 
Calvin, the subject of this sketch, the eleventh in a 
family of fifteen children. Under the teachings of 
all excellent father and a mother of more than ordi- 
nary ability he learned those habits of industry and 
self-reliance which, coupled with upright principles, 
uniformly characterized his later life. While per- 
forming all the duties exacted from a boy upon a 
New England farm, he very soon manifested a great 
desire for a classical education. Depending upon his 
own earnings for the means by which to achieve his 
desire, he set about the preparation for college by 
pursuing his studies at Randolph and Royalton 
Academies, Vermont. After some vicissitudes he 
for a time abandoned study and began labor in a 
brick -yard in Pennsylvania. Circumstances soon after 
influenced his removal to Ohio, where he first taught 
school at Urbana, Champaign Co., and was sub- 
sequently private tutor in the family of a Mr. Gwin, 
whose fine library afforded him abundant opportunity 
for reading. He finally .studied law with Hon. James 



170 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



Cooley, afterwards United States Chargi d Affaires 
to Peru. In 1819 be removed to Virginia, and was 
licensed to practice by tbe Supreme Court of tbat 
State, but bis strong love of freedom and tbe rigbts 
of man caused bim to renounce bis intention, and 
returning to Urbana, Ohio, be became the law-part- 
ner of Mr. Cooley. In 1821, Mr. Fletcher settled 
in Indianapolis, the capital of tbe State, with bis 
family, and was tbe first lawyer in that city. His 
business soon became lucrative. He later became 
prosecuting attorney, and associated with bim as 
partners Ovid Butler, Esq., and Simon Yandes, Esq. 
On making tbe capital bis home Mr. Fletcher actively 
interested himself in its prosperity, and readily won 
tbe confidence and esteem of its citizens. In 1827 
he was elected State senator, in whieli office he was 
continued until 1832, when be abandoned politics, 
though a successful career was open to bim had be 
chosen to follow it. He was in 1825 appointed 
State's attorney for tbe Fifth Judicial Circuit, em- 
bracing from twelve to fifteen counties. In 1834 be 
was appointed one of four to organize a State bank, 
and to act as sinking fund commissioner, which office 
was held for seven years. From 1843 until 1859, 
when the charter expired, be acted as president of 
tbe Indianapolis branch of the State Bank. Mr. 
Fletcher was a strong man physically, morally, and 
intellectually. He was equal to the emergency when 
justice to himself required an exhibition of strength, 
and in the same spirit be stood ready to befriend 
those who might have been otherwise injured. He 
was a lover of nature. He took mnch interest in 
the study of ornithology, and made himself familiar 
with the habits of birds, their instincts and charac- 
teristics. The domestic animals found in bim a sym- 
pathizing fiiend. He was kind to them, and ever 
ready to acquire a knowledge of their dispositions 
and qualities, that be might turn it to their advan- 
tage. He was fond of the science of astronomy, 
and, in fact, of all studies tbat were elevating and 
ennobling. In bis well-selected library of general 
literature, in addition to law-books, might be seen 
local histories, periodicals, the works of Audubon, 
school journals, and miscellaneous works. In one 
leading trait his course was marked and earnest, — no 



poor man ever applied to Calvin Fletcher in bis need, 
either for counsel or assistance, and was sent empty 
away. When tbe friends of the colored man, fleeing 
from bondage, were few and unpopular, his sympathy 
and helping band were never withheld. He was like 
all men of power in his age, exceedingly rapid in 
thought and action. Before others bad begun the 
argument be bad concluded it. Repose was not bis 
dominant characteristic. But more to be admired 
than all these traits was his earnest, consistent Chris- 
tian character. No man could love and respect the 
Bible and tbe minister more than he. He was a 
constant student of the one and bearer of the other. 
Calvin Fletcher was married, on the 1st of May, 
1821, to Miss Sarah Hill, of Champaign County, 
Ohio, a lady of remarkable energy of character, 
combined with gentleness of disposition and refined 
tastes. Her death occurred in September, 1854, and 
he was again married, to Mrs. Keziah Price Lister. 
The cliildreu of Calvin Fletcher are James Cooley, 
Elijah Timothy, Calvin, Miles Johnson, Stougliton 
Alfonzo, Maria Antoinette, Crawford, Ingram, Wil- 
liam Baldwin, Stephen Keyes, Lucy Keyes, and 
Albert Elliott. The death of Calvin Fletcher oc- 
curred May 26, 1866. At a meeting of the bankers, 
held at Indianapolis, resolutions respecting his death 
were adopted, of which the following extract is 
appended : 

'■That in the career of Mr. Fletcher are presented very 
striking evidences of what great and good things may be ac- 
complished under our free institutions by sound sense and 
unfailing energy, no matter how unpromising the circum- 
stances of the possessor may be at hi? outset in life. 

"That bis success in business is the history of a life of 
hopeful labor, pure integrity, genial benevolence, steady ciiu- 
tion, and active usefulness, in which great results have been 
attained, not by brilliant strokes of adventure or any depend- 
ence upon fortune, but by those plainer and less obtrusive 
methods which are within the reach of the great majority of 
men, and affords a lesson of hope and warning, — hope to tbe 
upright, diligent, and frugal, warning to the reckless and idle 
who wait upon fortune." 

In the fall of 1823, a little over a year after the 
first session of court, a lawyer of marked ability came 
from Pennsylvania primarily, but later from Lebanon, 
Ohio, where be had studied law with the celebrated 



CITV OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



171 



orator and lawyer, Thomas Corwin, and made his 
home here permanently. He was as prominent in j 
the profession as Mr. Fletcher, and much longer in | 
it. That was Hiram Brown. 

HiR.iM Brown, an eminent advocate in Indiana, 
traced his descent from a famil}' of Welsh origin, 
living in Southern England, that accompanied ur 
soon followed Lord Baltimore's colony to Marvland, 




settling at Welsh Flats, in Pennsylvania. The de- 
scendants of this emigrant remained in that region 
and in Maryland for years, and one of them, Wendel 
Brown, with his two sons, prior to 1754, crossed the 
mountains and visited the Monongahela Valley, 
making no settlement because of the savages ; and 
it was not till 1765 that his son, or grandson, Thomas 
Brown, located at Redstone Old Fort, — so called be- 
cause the mound-builders in former ages had erected 
a large stone intrenchment on the top of a detached 
hill at the mouth of Nemocolius Creek, a locality 
widely known in the early settlement of the West. 

Col. Michael Cresap (unjustly charged with mur- 
der in Logan's celebrated speech! had prior to 1765 
located a " tomahawk right" to several hundred acres, 



including the Old Fort, and in 1770 built a hewed 
log house on it, with a nailed shingle roof, the first 
west of the mountains. Thomas Brown bought 
Cresap's house and claim, and in 1785 perfected his 
title by purchase from the commonwealth, and laid 
out the town of Brownsville. He died in 1797, 
aged fifty-nine years, and was buried in the Old 
Fort, his tombstone stating that " he was the owner 
of this town." He left a large estate and family, 
but their hospitality and extravagance dissipated 
their patrimony, and the members scattered throughout 
the West, leaving few representatives of the name or 
blood in their old home. 

One of the sons, Ignatius Brown, born Dec. 1, 
1769, at Brownsville, died at Lebanon, Ohio, June 
:!, 183-1:. Early in 1791 he married Elizabeth 
Gregg, a woman of good mind and great force of 
character, and to them, on the 18th of July, 1792, 
was born their first child, Hiram Brown, the subject 
of the present sketch. They afterwards had six other 
children, — Milton, a distinguished lawyer and con- 
gressman from Tennessee ; Ashel, a leading lawyer at 
Lebanon, Ohio ; Hervey, a lawyer and member of the 
Legislature, both in Indiana and Tennessee ; and 
three daughters, — Minerva, Matilda, and Orpha, — • 
all of whom married. In 1798, Ignatius Brown 
removed his family and remnant of his property to 
Kentucky, where he bought several thousand acres 
of land and resided several years; but his title proving 
defective he was impoverished, and compelled again 
to emigrate. He located a claim in the Symmes' 
Purchase, near Denfield, in Warren Co., Ohio, but 
when returning caught cold, which produced paraly- 
sis of the optic nerves, resulting in instant and total 
blindness ; in this helpless state he was led by 
his comrades through the wilderness to his family. 
Vision afterward slowly returned, and in old age he 
could read without glasses. While blind he was 
made justice of the peace, and subsequently associate 
judge of the County Court, a position he held at the 
time of his death. 

The young wife, brave under this disaster, moved 
her helpless husband and family to the new location, 
and began making a home in the woods. The 
burthen, of course, fell on Hiram, then a mere boy, 



172 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



and for years his life was devoted to this work, fore- 
going an education that the rest should get it, and 
have shelter and food. • By studying at night 
he learned to read well and write, acquired some 
knowledge of grammar, and " cyphered as far as the 
rule of three." Subsequently, by reading the best 
authors, he gained so great a command of pure Eng- 
lish that his forensic efforts, though never specially 
prepared, were admired for their fluency, finish, and 
perfection of style. After several years' work on the 
farm he determined to become a merchant, and 
entered a store in Lebanon, but the change so in- 
jured his health that he was thought to be consump- 
tive. Returning at once to farm work, to chopping 
and milling, he soon recuperated and became noted 
for activity and strength, being champion in all 
athletic exercises. It is said that, with a few yards' 
run, he could jump over the head of a man his equal 
in height. At twenty to twenty-five years old he 
was in the prime of physical strength. He was five 
feet eight inches high, weighed one hundred and 
sixty-five pounds; erect, symmetrically formed, with 
small hands and feet. His head was large, fea- 
tures clearly cut, brows arched, shading large light- 
blue eyes ; mouth firm, and lips thin. His voice 
was musical, high-pitched, and under perfect con- 
trol. 

His business being prosperous, he was married, 
May 29, 1817, to Miss Judith Smith, a very beauti- 
ful and amiable woman, who survived him nearly 
six years. She was born July 12, 1794, in Pow- 
hatan County, Va., the daughter of Rev. James Smith, 
one of the earliest Methodist preachers. This union 
was a happy one, lasting over thirty years. They 
had nine children, one dying in infancy ; the rest 
survived them. 

After marriage he traveled on horseback to Wash- 
ington City to patent a boat-wheel he had invented, 
but before doing anything with it the panic of 1820 
overwhelmed him, with many others, and he lost all 
his property. After settling his affairs he studied 
law with Thomas Corwin for six months and was 
admitted to the bar. Mr. Corwin wished him to 
remain at Lebanon, but deeming Indianapolis a better 
point, he removed here with his familv early in No- 



vember, 1823, and was admitted by the Supreme 
Court in 1824. 

He soon acquired a good practice, ranking highest 
as an advocate in criminal cases. Before a jury his 
bearing was easy, gestures apt, voice clear and pene- 
trating, his statement of the evidence fair and forci- 
ble. He instantly grasped the strong points in his 
cases, and illustrated them in .so many different ways 
that he fixed them in the jurors' minds without 
wearying them by the repetition. He identified 
himself with the feelings and interests of his clients, 
and made their cause his own. His native wit and 
keen sense of humor often enabled him to so ridicule 
an opponent's case that it was laughed out of court. 
He was sometimes, though not often, sarcastic and bit- 
ter in denunciation, but his nature was kindly and for- 
beai'ing. He was most formidable in desperate cases, 
when the odds were heaviest against him. " Court 
week" then brought the whole country into town, 
and when he spoke the house was always crowded. 
A volume would be needed to detail the incidents in 
his professional career and give the anecdotes told of 
his wit, humor, and stinging repartee. Some have 
been published, but most have perished with those 
who heard them. For years he was in every impor- 
tant case, and was generally successful. With the 
exception, perhaps, of a short service as prosecutor, at 
an early day, he declined executive or judicial posi- 
tion, practicing bis profession from November, 1823, 
till June 8, 1853, when he died, the "father of the 
bar." His early associates had nearly all died or re- 
tired, and a new generation was growing up whose 
ways were unlike their fathers'. He disliked the 
change, and missed and mourned his old opponents. 
He often fell into reveries, his memory busy with the 
past, his face changing with each crowding recollec- 
tion, his eyes flashing until he would break out with 
the exclamation, " Ah, there were giants in those 
days !" 

We now have no idea of the hardships endured by 
the old bar in their practice, the circuit once ex- 
tending from Bloomington to Fort Wayne, its whole 
extent a wilderness. Traveling it was a campaign 
often involving weeks of absence from home, man 
and horse struggling through endless swamps, swim- 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



173 



niing swollen rivers, and sleeping in the woods. It 
was at all times tedious and laborious, and in some 
seasons difficult and dangerous. The fees were far 
less than now, and often remained mere promises to 
pay. This at least was Mr. Brown's experience, for 
though he nominally made a great deal of money, his 
indulgence lost him the greater part of it. He gen- 
erally tore up the notes and accounts against his more 
dilatory clients rather than press their collection. 
With his wife and son he traveled through Iowa in 
1848, stopping each night with some old client en- 
countered on the way, and on his return said he 
ought to receive some credit for the rapid growth of 
that State, for he found it largely peopled by his run- 
away clients. 

He had no love for or desire to accumulate money, ; 
and at his death he left only his town residence and I 
a small farm south of the city, on which and its 
orchard he had expended money enough, if it had 
been invested in town property, to have made him 
rich. He admitted this, but said he then would not 
have enjoyed it, maintaining that men only actually 
possess the money they spend, and get no benefit from 
it unless so used. 

Neither a politician nor a partisan, he was a life- 
long Whig and admirer of Henry Clay, naming his 
oldest son for him. He made Whig speeches, and 
during the Morgan excitement was strongly urged to 
run for Congress by the anti-Masons ; but though 
success seemed certain he refused, and never entered 
political life. His habits and tastes were strongly 
opposed to such a career. He disliked the glare of 
public life, and delighted in home and its pleasures, 
the society of children and old friends. With them 
his fun-loving nature had free rein, and wit, humor, 
and anecdote were lavished on all around him. Those 
only who saw him under such circumstances could 
properly appreciate the sterling worth and honesty of 
the man. 

He inherited hospitality, and the latch-string was 
always out. All preachers and clients were welcome, 
and for years his house contained nearly as many 
guests as members of his own family ; and as they 
generally came on horseback, this " entertainment for 
man and beast" not only increased the labors of 



his hou.sehold, but seriously diminished his re- 
sources. 

Reared at a time when. liquor was kept in every 
house and tendered to every visitor, it was only 
natural, with his temperament and social qualities, 
that at times he used it to excess. It was a common 
vice with the bar, but with him a little went a great 
way. He left off its use entirely for years before he 
died, and notwithstanding his opposition to secret 
societies — believing them to be inimical to republican 
institutions, which require the most open discussion 
and treatment of all questions — he united with and 
became a prominent officer in the Sons of Temper- 
ance, and labored in that cause till his death. At 
about the same time he joined the Methodist Church, 
— in which his wife had been a life-long member, — 
and died in that faith. He denounced gambling in 
all its forms, and was selected by a public meeting to 
assist in the prosecution of the gamblers, who seemed 
to have been given free rein by the regular authori- 
ties. In endeavoring to do so he was hampered, and 
the facts and evidence withheld from him in the 
clerk's office. Commenting on this at a subsequent 
public meeting, he said that whether the action of 
his friend the clerk was right or not, it had at least 
illustrated the greatest of the virtues, for " his charity 
had covered a multitude of sins." 

He was among the earliest to introduce fine fruits 
into this section, and spent much time, labor, and 
money in the effort. Though rarely tasting fruit 
himself, and though no market then existed for it, he 
planted twenty-four acres in the choicest varieties, 
as he said, for the public benefit and future markets. 
His devotion to it caused his death, for, having spent 
a very hot day in it, he was partially sunstruck, and 
on returning home at night was seized with conges- 
tion of the brain. He rallied from the first attack, 
and seemed better for several days, but a relapse took 
place on the night of the Yth of June and he lay 
unconscious till eight o'clock p.m. of the next day, 
when he died. When his critical illness became 
known his old friends hastened to his side. Among 
them came Calvin Fletcher, his old opponent at the 
bar, who seemed most deeply affected at his loss. 

His death was a shock to the community. Full 



174 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



obituary notices, with sketches of his life, appeared 
in all the journals. The courts adjourned ; the bar 
passed resolutions, which were spread on the records, 
and bench and bar attended his funeral in a body. 
The funeral discourse was pronounced by his old 
friend, Rev. W. H. Goode, at Roberts' Chapel, June, 
1853, and his remains were interred in Green Lawn 
Cemetery. They were subsequently removed, with 
those of his wife and two of his sons, to a lot at the 
eastern base of the hill in Crown Hill Cemetery, 
where they rest in peace, awaiting the resurrection. 

Mr. Brown had nine children ; one died in infancy, 
the rest survived him. Eliza S., the eldest daugh- 
ter, married J. C. Yuhn, a prominent merchant of the 
city ; they have four surviving children and several 
grandchildren. Minerva V., the second child (now 
deceased), married A. G. Porter; they have five sur- 
viving children and several grandchildren. Angeline, 
the third child, died at four years of age. Martlia 
S., the fourth child, married Samuel Delzell, a prom- 
inent business man of the city ; they have one sur- 
viving child. Clay Brown, the oldest son, was edu- 
cated at the seminary under Kemper, and at Asbury 
University ; studied medicine with Dr. John Evans, 
and graduated at Rush Medical College; began prac- 
tice at Anderson, Ind., but removed in a few years to 
this city, soon taking high rank in his profession ; he 
was appointed assistant surgeon of the Eleventh In- 
diana Volunteers, and was present at Fort Donelson, 
wliere overwork and exposure produced illness, from 
which he died at Crump's Landing, Tenn., just before 
the battle at Shiloh ; his body was brought home by 
Adjt. Macauley, and buried with the honors of war. 
Matilda A. was married to Jonas McKay, and is re- 
siding at Lebanon, Ohio ; she has two daughters. 
Ignatius Brown, the second son, was educated under 
Kemper and Lang at the seminar}', studied kw with 
his father, graduated Bachelor of Law at Blooming- 
ton, and began practice ; he married Miss Elizabeth 
M. Marsee, oldest daughter of Rev. J. Marsee ; she 
is now dead ; they have four children ; Mr. Brown 
left the practice at the beginning of the war, and is 
now with his sons in the abstract-of-title line. James 
T. Brown, the third son, was educated at the semi- 
nary under Kemper and Lang, became traveling 



salesman for Guthrie & Co., of Louisville, married 
Miss Forsythe, and died (childless) in 1861. Mary 
E., the youngest child, married Barton D. Jones, and 
is now residing in Washington City ; they have 
three surviving children. 

Probably no man connected with the county courts 
was so widely known and closely associated with their 
history in the minds of all early residents as Robert 
B. Duncan, the deputy of James M. Ray for several 
years, and then for nearly a score of years the clerk 
succeeding Mr. Ray, on the latter's acceptance of the 
eashiership of the old State Bank in 1834. 

Robert B. Duncan is of Scotch descent, his 
grandfather, Robert Duncan, born in 1726, a native 




Scotchman, having emigrated to America in 1754, 
where he engaged in the pursuit of his trade, that of 
a tailor. He married Agnes Singleton, burn in 1742, 
also of Scotch parentage, and had children, — Robert, 
James, John, and three daughters. Robert was born 
in Pennsylvania, Sept. 28, 1772, and during his youth 
resided in that State, after which he removed to 
Western New York and engaged in farming pur- 
suits. He married Miss Anna Boyles, and had 



CITY OP INDIANAPOLIS. 



175 



children, — James, Esther, Williaiu, Robert B., Mar- 
garet, John, Samuel, Jane, and Annie. The death 
of Mrs. Duncan occurred in 1822, and that of Mr. 
Duncan Jan. 6, 1846. Their son Robert B. was 
born in Ontario County, N. Y., June 15, 1810, 
where the earliest seven years of his life were spent. 
In 1817 he removed to Ohio and settled near San- 
dusky, his residence until the spring of 1820, when 
the family emigrated to Conner's Station, in the pres- 
ent Hamilton County, Ind., then an unsurveyed 
prairie. Various employments occupied the time 
here until 1824, when he became a resident of Pike 
township, Marion Co., and engaged in the pioneer 
labor of clearing ground and farming. The year 
1827 found him a resident of Indianapolis, where 
he entered the county clerk's oflSce as deputy, and 
remained thus employed until March, 1834, when 
he was elected to the office of clerk of the county, 
and held the position for sixteen succes.sive years. 
]Mr. Duncan had meanwhile engaged in the study of 
law, and immediately, on the expiration of his official 
term in 1850, began his professional career, confining 
himself mainly to business associated with the Pro- 
bate Court. He still continues to practice, devoting 
himself to the interests of the firm with which he is 
associated in connection with the Probate Court and to 
consultation. Mr. Duncan was early in his political 
career a Whig, and continued his relations with that 
party until his later indorsement of the articles of the 
Republican platform. With the exception of his 
lengthy period of official life as county clerk, he has 
never accepted nor sought office. He was reared in 
the stanch faith of the Scotch Presbyterian Church, 
and still adheres to that belief. Mr. Duncan was 
married in December, 1843, to Miss Mary E., daugh- 
ter of Dr. John H. Sanders, of Indianapolis, to whom 
were born children, — John S. (a practicing lawyer), 
Robert P. (a manufacturer), Anna D. (wife of Wil- 
liam T. Barbee, of Lafayette, Ind.), and Nellie D. 
(wife of John R. Wilson, of Indianapolis). Mr. 
Duncan enjoys the distinction of being the oldest 
continuous resident of the county. 

Two years after Mr. Duncan came to the town to 
take the deputy's place with Mr. Ray, James Morri- 
son came up from Charleston, Clarke Co., having 



been elected Secretary of State to succeed Judge 
Wick. He was born in Ayrshire, Scotland, in 1796, 
came to this country a young lad, with his parents 
and brothers (the late William H. and Alexander F.), 
studied law with Judge William B. Rochester, in 
Western New York, and after his admission to the 
bar came to Charleston, where he practiced his pro- 
fession with the late Judge Charles Dewey, of the 
State Supreme Bench from 1836 to 1847. When 
elected Secretary of State, in 1829, he removed here 
permanently with his brothers, and succeeded Judge 
Bethuel Morris as presiding judge of the circuit. 
He also succeeded Samuel Merrill as president of the 
old State Bank, on the accession of the latter to the 
presidency of the Madison Railroad. He was the 
first attorney-general of the State, and the first presi- 
dent of the Burns Club, being a native of the same 
shire. For twenty-five years he was senior warden 
of Christ Church, and during the remainder of his 
life, after the organization of St. Paul's Church, held 
the same office there. He was one of the best men, 
intellectually and morally, that the city has ever 
claimed. He was an honorable lawyer, and that 
means a great deal, and he was a Christian gentleman. 

In the latter part of the second decade of the city's 
existence, Mr. Ovid Butler came to Indianapolis and 
formed a partnership with Mr. Fletcher, which was 
subsequently enlarged by the addition of Simon 
Yandes, Esq., eldest son of the late Daniel Yandes, 
the pioneer mill builder of the New Purchase. Mr. 
Yandes was noted at the bar for accuracy, clearness, 
and persevering labor, as was Mr. Butler, and with 
Mr. Fletcher's experience and dash, the firm was one 
of rare strength, as well known for its integrity as 
its ability. 

Ovid Butler was born on the 7th of February, 
1801, in Augusta, N. Y., and died at Indianapolis, 
Ind., on the 12th of July, 1881. His father, the 
Rev. Chauncey Butler, was the first pastor of the 
Disciples' Church in this city. He died in 1840. 
His grandfather, Capt. Joel Butler, was a Revolu- 
tionary soldier, and served in the disastrous Quebec 
expedition. He died in 1822. In 1817 the family 
removed from the home in New York to Jennings 
County, in this State, where Ovid Butler resided 



176 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



until he arrived at the years of manhood. Here he 
taught school for a few years and studied law. In 
1825 he settled at Shelbyville, where he practiced 
his profession until 1836, when he removed to In- 
dianapolis, which became his permanent residence. 
He continued in his practice here, having as part- 
ners at diflferent times Calvin Fletcher, Simon 
Yandes, and Horatio C. Newcomb, among the ablest 
and most prominent lawyers of the State. His busi- 
ness was extensive and very lucrative, but owing to 
impaired health he retired from the bar in 1849. 

He was married in 1827 to Cordelia Cole, who 
lived until the year 1838. He was again married, 
to Mrs. Elizabeth A. Elgin, daughter of the late 
Thomas McOuat, in 1840, who survived him one 
year. No man was more fortunate in his domestic 
relations. As a lawyer Mr. Butler excelled in the 
office. In the argument of legal questions and the 
preparation of pleadings he was laborious and inde- 
fatigable. With firmness, perseverance, clearness of 
purpose, and tenacity without a parallel he pushed 
his legal business through the courts. With not 
many of the graces of the orator, he surpassed, by 
dint of great exertion in the preparation of his cases, 
those who relied upon persuasive eloquence or sudden 
strategy at the bar. Plain, quiet, gentle, modest, but 
solid and immovable, he was a formidable antagonist 
in the greatest cases that were tried during his prac- 
tice. His style was strong and sententious ; without 
ornament, without humor, without elegance, but 
logical and convincing. His clients always got his 
best ability in the preparation and trial of their cases. 
His legal knowledge was general and comprehensive, 
his judgment sound, and his reasoning powers vigor- 
ous. He met few competitors at the bar combining 
80 much industry, strength, perseverance, and cul- I 
ture. He had the unbounded confidence of the 
community in his common sense, integrity, and 
general capability in his profession. j 

After his retirement from the bar he devoted his 
life mainly to the interests of the Christian Church 
and of the Northwestern Christian University. But 
for a few years after the close of the Mexican war, 
while the questions as to the extension of slavery into 
the territories acquired were being agitated, he took 



an active part in politics. In 1848 he established a 
newspaper in Indianapolis called The Free Soil Ban- 
ner, which took radical ground against the extension 
of slavery and against slavery itself. The motto was 
"Free soil, free States, free men." He had been pre- 
viously a Democrat. He served upon the Free Soil 
electoral ticket and upon important political commit- 
tees, and took the stump in advocacy of his princi- 
ples in the Presidential campaigns of 1848 and 1852. 

In 1852 he contributed the funds, in a great meas- 
ure, to establish The Free Soil Democrat, a newspa- 
per for the dissemination of his cherished views upon 
these questions. This was finally merged in The In- 
dianapolis Journal in the year 1854, Mr. Butler 
having purchased a controlling interest in that news- 
paper. In the year 1854 the Republican party was 
organized out of the anti-slavery men of all parties, 
and took bold ground upon the subject, and the 
Journal became its organ. The influence Mr. But- 
ler exerted upon public sentiment was great and be- 
neficent. He ranged in the higher walks of politics, 
steadfastly and intelligently advancing the great ideas, 
then unpopular, which have since become the univer- 
sal policy of the nation. He lived to see his prin- 
ciples written upon the banners of our armies and 
gleaming in the lightning of a thousand battles, to see 
them embodied in the Constitution and hailed with 
delight wherever free government has an advocate. 

Mr. Butler gave further evidence of devotion to 
his principles by aiding in the establishment of a 
free-soil paper in Cincinnati, and taking a wider 
range when Kossuth came preaching the gospel of 
liberty for down-trodden Hungary, he again opened 
his liberal purse for humanity. 

But he sought quiet and retirement. Many years 
ago he removed his residence from his old home in 
town to his farm north of and beyond its limits. 
Here, among and in the shade of the great walnut-, 
ash-, sugar-, and elm-trees, he built his house, and 
here he spent the remainder of his years. Here, 
walking or sitting beneath these grand representa- 
tives of the primeval forest, might be seen his ven- 
erable form fitly protected by their shadows. Here 
he received his friends and welcomed them to his 
hospitable board. Here bis family assembled, his 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



177 



children and his children's children, to enjoy his 
society and to pay respect to his wishes. 

The appearance of Mr. Butler was not strikins. 
Of about the average height, as he walked he leaned 
forward, as if in thought. His eye was bright and 
cheerful, and the expression of his countenance was 
sedate, indicative of sound judgment, strong common 
sense, an unruffled temper, a fixedness of purpose, 
and kindness of heart. His voice was not powerful 
or clear, his delivery was slow and somewhat hesitat- 
ing ; but such was the matter of his speech, so clear, 
cogent, apt, and striking, that he compelled the at^ 
tention of his hearers. The weight of his character, 
the power of his example, the charm of a life of rec- 
titude and purity gave a force to his words which, 
coming from an ordinary man, might not have been 
so carefully heeded. Emerson says, " It makes a 
great difiFerence to the sentence whether there be a 
man behind it or not." He was a little shy and un- 
obtrusive in his manners, especially among strangers, 
but to his old friends cordial, winning, and confiding. 
He avoided controversies, kept quiet when they were 
impending, and conciliated by his decorous forbear- 
ance those who, by active opposition, would have 
been roused to hostility. 

Stronger than all other features of his character 
was his unaffected piety. For many years of his 
life he was an humble and devoted Christian, illus- 
trating in his daily walk and conversation the prin- 
ciples he professed. Devout without display, zealous 
and charitable, he placed before and above all other 
personal objects and considerations his own spiritual 
culture ; looking to that true and ultimate refinement 
which, begun on earth, is completed in heaven. 

The great and memorable work of Mr. Butler was 
connected with the Northwestern Christian Univer- 
sity, now called " Butler University." • He, with 
many friends, had for some years contemplated the 
establishment of this institution, and in the winter 
of 1849-50 obtained the passage of a charter through 
the Legislature of this State. Mr. Butler drafted it, 
and had the credit of giving expression in it to the 
peculiar objects of the University. The language of 
the section defining them is as follows : " An institu- 
tion of learning of the highest class for the education 
12 



of the youth of all parts- of the United States and 
of the Northwest ; to establish in said institution 
departments or colleges for the instruction of the 
students in every branch of liberal and professional 
education ; to educate and prepare suitable teachers 
for the common schools of the country ; to teach and 
inculcate the Christian faith and Christian morality 
as taught in the sacred Scriptures, discarding as un- 
inspired and without authority all writings, formulas, 
creeds, and articles of faith subsequent thereto, and 
for the promotion of the sciences and arts." As 
to intellectual training, this calls for a high standard. 
As to religious teaching, it is radically liberal. 

But Mr. Butler was not an aggressive reformer. 
His gentle nature had no taint of acrimony or intol- 
erance in it. While he entertained, announced, and 
adhered to his own views with unalterable tenacity, 
he exercised toward all who disagreed with him an 
ample Christian charity. He was not a sectarian in 
the narrow and offensive sense. He was willing to 
wait patiently for the gradual and slow changes of 
piiblic opinion as truth was developed. 

For twenty years he served as president of the 
board of directors of the University, and in 1871, at 
the age of seventy, he retired from the office, saying 
in his letter of resignation, " I have given to the in- 
stitution what I had to offer of care, of counsel, of 
labor, and of means, for the purpose of building up 
not merely a literary institution, but for the purpose 
of building up a collegiate institution of the highest 
class, in which the divine character and the supreme 
Lordship of Jesus, the Christ, should be fully recog- 
nized and carefully taught to all the students, to- 
gether with the science of Christian morality, as 
taught in the Christian Scriptures, and to place, such 
an institution in the front ranks of human progress 
and Christian civilization as the advocate and expo- 
nent of the common and equal rights of humanity, 
without distinction of sex, race, or color." 

He had fought the good fight, he had adhered to 
his ptirpose, he had not labored in vain. But for 
ten years more, and until his death, he gave the Uni- 
versity his attention and his best thought. He had 
devoted so many years of his life and so much of his 
energy to this purpose that it had become the hfbit 



178 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUN'J'Y. 



of his being to promote and protect the interests of 
the University. His influence and his spirit are still 
as powerful as ever there. Absence, silence, and 
death have no power over them. 

He did not run to the mountains, or the seaside, 
or Saratoga for happiness. His residence, his car- 
riage, and his dress were plain. He gratified his 
taste, but it was an exalted one. The campus of a 
college, his gift to men, was to him a finer show than 
deer-parks or pleasure-grounds. The solid walls of 
the University were more pleasing than a palace 
carved and polished and decorated for his own com- 
fort. He delighted to look upon well-trained men 
and women rather than pictures and statuary. He 
preferred to gather the young and docile of the hu- 
man race, and put them on exhibition, rather than 
short-horns or Morgan horses, and yet he did not 
de.<pise or underrate these other good things. He 
gratified a refined and ennobled taste when he selected 
the man for culture and not the animal. But it was 
not all a matter of taste ; he looked much farther 
than that. He loved cultivated men and women for 
their uses ; for their power and capability to do 
good ; to teach the truth, to set examples ; to lead 
men from vice and ignorance ; and to give them 
strength and encouragement. And so he put forth, 
fur many of the best years of his life, his constant 
exertions to build up a great institution of learning, 
ill which the principles of human freedom and of 
Christianity should be taught forever. He did not 
die without the sight. He in.=pired many to unite 
with him in the work, and has laid a foundation in a 
]ilace and in a way that, so far as can be seen, will be 
perpetual for great good. 

The Circuit Court was the only one known here 
till 1849, except the Probate Court, which was hardly 
accounted a court, and not held in high consideration, 
being little more than a sort of relief to the Circuit 
Court, the probate business of which it assumed. 
The judge was never or rarely a lawyer, and his bu.si- 
ness was that of an accountant rather than a judge. 
In 1849 the bar decided, after some consultation, that 
the Circuit Court needed to be relieved in a more ef- 
fective fashion than the Probate Court did it, and the 
late Oliver H. Smith drafted a bill to create a Com- 



mon Pleas Court for this county. It passed, and 
Abram A. Hammond, subsequently Lieutenant-Gov- 
ernor and Governor, was made the first judge and 
clerk, the bill adding one duty to the other to make 
the fees a sufiicient salary. In a year he went to Cali- 
fornia, and was succeeded by Edward Lander, an elder 
brother of the late Gen. Fred. Lander, and the 
first chief justice of Washington Territory. An act 
of the Legislature of May 11, 1852, abolished this 
local court and created a State system of Common 
Pleas Courts, specially charged with probate business, 
but given also concurrent jurisdiction with the Cir- 
cuit Court and ju.stices of the peace in a certain 
range of civil and criminal business. The order of 
judges of this court will be found in the list of county 
officers. The district contained Marion, Boone, and 
Hendricks Counties. In 1873 " all matters and bus- 
iness pending in the Courts of Common Pleas" were 
" transferred to the Circuit Courts of the proper 
counties," and the system of Common Pleas Courts 
came to an end, after an existence in Marion County 
of nearly a quarter of a century. 

In the courts of inferior jurisdiction the justices 
of the county and city occasionally attained a credit- 
able and well-earned distinction. Among these were 
Henry Brady, Thomas Morrow, Samuel Moore, 
Charles Bonge, Hiram Bacon, James Johnson, John 
C. Hume, and others in the county outside of the 
city ; and in the city, Obed Foote, Henry Bradley, 
Caleb Scudder, Charles Fisher, and particularly Wil- 
liam Sullivan, whose long tenure of the office, with 
the extent of his business and the soundness of his 
judgment, made him of almost equal authority with 
the Circuit Court. For many years he was almost 
the only justice of the peace that the bar would trust 
with any business. 

William Sullivan.— The ancestors of Mr. 
Sullivan were among the earliest settlers of the 
Eastern Shore of Maryland and the adjoining State 
of Delaware. His grandfather, Moses Sullivan, was 
of Irish-English descent, and his wife, Mary Parker, 
of Kent County, ISId., was of English extraction. 
Their children were David, William, and Mary, the 
first-named of whom was the father of the subject of 
this sketch. He married Elizabeth Peacock in 1794, 



CITY OP INDIANAPOLIS. 



179 



and settled in Kent County, Md. Their children 
were Joel, Aaron, Sarah, Nathan P., William, Ellen 
C., and Georsie R. The survivor of these children, 
William Sullivan, was born April 25, 1803. His 
father having died when the lad was in his fifth year, 
he was placed in the academy at Elkton, Md., and 
remained at this institution until his seventeenth 
year. On the death of his mother in 1827 he made 
an extended tour for purposes of observation and 
improvement, and continued his studies, after which 
he accepted employment from a corps of civil engi- 
neers as land surveyor and general assistant, and 
gained much practical knowledge in this vocation. 

He removed in 1833 to Ohio, and for a term en- 
gaged in teaching, subsequently entering Hanover 
College, Indiana, where he was employed both in 
study and as an instructor. In 1834 Indianapolis 
became his home, where he immediately opened a 
private school, and later became connected with the 
Marion County Seminary, of which he acted as prin- 
cipal. In 1836 he was appointed to the office of 
civil engineer of the city of Indianapolis, and under 
his direction the first street improvements were made. 
The office of county surveyor of Marion County was 
also conferred upon him. During this time he con- 
structed a large map of the city for general use, and 
a smaller one for the use of citizens. Mr. Sullivan 
took an active interest in educational matters, and 
was instrumental in organizing and building the 
Franklin Institute, which in its day enjoyed a suc- 
cessful career. He on dissolving his connection with 
this institution accepted the appointment of United 
States deputy surveyor of public lands, and imme- 
diately entered upon the discharge of his duties in 
Northern Michigan among the Chippewa Indians, 
then a tnjublesonie and dangerous tribe. He was, 
while discharging the duties of this office, appointed 
chief assistant of the distribution post-office, then 
removed to Indianapolis, and held the position for 
four years, keeping account of the business and 
making quarterly and final settlement of the office 
receipts during the whole of that time. 

In the spring of 1641 he was elected mayor of the 
city, and served one term. In the fall of that year 
he was chosen justice of the peace in and for Centre 



township, Marion Co., at Indianapolis, and continued 
to hold the office until 1867, a period of twenty-six 
years, frequently discharging the duties of police 
judge during the absence of the mayor. He was 
also, while acting as justice of the peace, the only 
United States commissioner at Indianapolis. He was 
later appointed by the United States Court the com- 
missioner in bankruptcy for the State of Indiana. 
Meanwhile he has devoted both means and time to 
public improvements, particularly to plank-, gravel-, 
and railroads centring at Indianapolis, serving for 
several years as a director of the Central Railway 
from Richmond to Indianapolis, and subsequently as 
trustee of the Peru and Indianapolis Railroad. Mr. 
Sullivan was a well-read elementary lawyer before 
coming West. On retiring from active pursuits in 
1867 he had a large amount of unsettled business, 
which induced him to be admitted as a practicing 
attorney in the various courts of Marion County, 
though he has during later years declined business 
for other parties. In politics he acted with the 
Democrats until the passage of the " Kansas- Nebraska 
Acts," since which time he has voted with the Re- 
publican party. On the 8th of March, 1835, Mr. 
Sullivan was married to Miss Clarissa Tomliuson, 
who was of Scotch and English descent, and resided 
in Indianapolis. Their children now living are Clara 
E. (wife of Col. Richard F. May, of Helena, Mon- 
tana), Flora (wife of E. Wulschner, of Indianapolis), 
and George II. Sullivan, who married Miss Annie 
Russell, of Indianapolis, and has one son, Russell. 
Both Mr. and Mrs. Sullivan, though advanced in 
years, enjoy excellent health and exceptional mental 
vigor. 

In 1865 the Criminal Circuit Court of Marion 
County was created to relieve the original court of a 
class of business that consumed a great deal of time, 
obstructed important interests, and largely increased 
the cost of maintaining the court to the county and 
the costs of litigation to parties. A separate court 
would hasten the dispatch of business of all kinds, 
and be a money-saving as well as trouble-saving 
measure. The Criminal Court, however, was not 
separated so completely from the parent court as was 
that of the Common Pleas in 1849. It was separate 



180 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



ouly in its duties and its judges. The county clerk 
had charge of its papers and records, and the county 
sheriff served it as he did the old Circuit Court and 
the Common Pleas Court. These three, the Circuit, 
the Common Pleas, and the Criminal Court, con- 
sitituted the judicial force of the county from 18G5 
to 1873, when the Common Pleas was reabsorbed into 
the Circuit Court. The Criminal Court continues, 
with a little modification since its original establish- 
ment, with a series of accomplished and efficient 
judges, as will be seen from the list appended to this 
work. The member of the city bar who is probably 
the best known as an advocate in the Criminal Court, 
though his practice is by no means confined to that 
class of business, is Jonathan W. Gordon. 

Hon. Jonathan W. Gordon was bom Aug. 13, 
1820. His father, William Gordon, was an Irish 
laborer, who emigrated to the United States in 1789- 
90, and settled in Washington County, Pa., where, 
Aug. 18, 1795, he married Sarah Wallon, a native 
of Greenbrier County, Va., by whom he had fourteen 
children, of which the subject of this biography is 
the thirteenth. The father removed from Pennsyl- 
vania to Indiana in the spring of 1835, and settled 
in Ripley County, where he resided until his death, 
Jan. 20, 1841. His wife survived him until May 
29, 1857, when she died at the residence of her 
youngest daughter, Mrs. Charlotte T. Kelley. 

In the mean time the subject of this sketch mar- 
ried Miss Catharine J. Overturf, April 3, 1843 ; 
entered upon the profession of the law Feb. 27, 
1844 ; went to Mexico, June 9, 1846, as a volunteer 
in the Third Regiment of Indiana Volunteers ; lost 
his health in the service, and upon his return aban- 
doned the law and studied medicine on account of 
hemorrhage of the lungs; was graduated as M.D. 
from Asbury University in 1851, and resumed the 
practice of the law at Indianapolis in 1852. He was 
elected prosecuting attorney in 1854 ; member of 
the House of Representatives in the General As- 
sembly in 1856, and again in 1858 ; and during the 
latter term was twice chosen Speaker. 

In 1859 he was nominated by many members of 
the bar, without distinction of party, for the office 
of Common Pleas judge, made vacant by the death 



of Hon. David Wallace ; but, finding that some 
aspirants for the position desired a party contest, he 
declined the race, holding that the judicial office 
ought to be kept clear of party politics. In 1860 he 
took an active part in behalf of Mr. Lincoln, to 
whose nomination he had largely contributed by de- 
feating an instruction of the Indiana delegation for 
Edward Bates. His speech against Mr. Bates was 
published, and though effective for the purpose for 
which it was delivered, was scarcely less so to prevent 
his own appointment to any civil position under Mr. 
Lincoln. In 1861 he was chosen clerk of the House 
of Representatives, but resigned the position for a 
place in the ranks of the army upon the outbreak of 
the war. He served during the three months' ser- 
vice in the Ninth Indiana Volunteer Infantry, and 
received from the President during the time the 
appointment of major in the Eleventh United States 
Infantry. He accepted the position and served in 
garrison duty until March 4, 1864, when he resigned; 
and, returning to Indianapolis, resumed the practice 
of the law. He united with those represented in the 
Cleveland Convention of that year in the support of 
Gen. Fremont, but when he ceased to be a candidate, 
supported Mr. Lincoln. He made two political 
speeches during the contest, taking strong ground 
against public corruption, and the exercise of all un- 
authorized power. In the fall of the year he 
defended those citizens of the State who were ar- 
raigned and tried before military commissions, and 
maintained the want of any jurisdiction on the part 
of such commissions to try a citizen of a State not 
involved in actual war. His argument was printed 
and largely circulated at the time, and it is believed 
that little was added to it by any subsequent discus- 
sions. He opposed not so much the impeachment 
of President Johnson, as the heated and partisan 
manner in which the Republican party tried to make 
it effective. This he opposed with zeal and enthu- 
siasm from first to last, and when it failed in the 
vote on the eleventh article, congratulated the coun- 
try on its failure. 

He supported Gen. Grant in 1868, and in the 
course of the canvass delivered one of his ablest 
speeches in defense of the constitutionality of the 





w& 



^i'C5">— S^Cc/Vt/ 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



181 



measures of Congress for the reconstruction of gov- 
ernments in the seceding States. In the spring of 
1SG9 he suffered a great loss in the burning of his 
house and the greater part of his library. This loss 
he has never been able to repair, and his preparation 
in many a great controversy since has limped be- 
cause of it. In 1872 he again supported Grant; was 
phiecd at the head of his electoral ticket in the State, 
and being elected was chosen by his colleagues 
president of the electoj'al college. In his speech 
upon taking the chair, he endeavored to ameliorate 
the asperity of party feeling and spirit by a generous 
tribute to the great journalist who had been sup- 
ported by the opponents of the President. His party 
nominated him in 1876 for the office of attorney-gen- 
eral of the State, but as the party was defeated that 
year in the State, he went down with the rest. In 
1868 he ran for and was elected to the House of 
Representatives in the General Assembly. His can- 
vass was regarded as indiscreet and audacious by 
many of his more prudent friends. Under the leader- 
ship of its most prominent leader, the Republican 
party of the State was deeply poisoned with the 
greenback virus. He knew this as well as others ; 
but believing that it was altogether more important 
that sound views on the subject of the currency 
should be presented to the people than that he should 
be elected to the Legislature, he exposed and ridiculed 
the fallacies of the greenbackers without stint or 
mercy. His defeat was confidently predicted by 
many prominent men of his own party ; but at the 
close of the election it was found that just views are 
understood and appreciated by the people, for he 
ran as well as his associates on the ticket. In the 
Legislature he devoted his labors and time to the 
amendment of the criminal law, so as to secure con- 
viction of the guilty in many cases where it was be- 
fore next to impossible. His labors were defeated 
for want of time to carry them through. He did 
succeed, however, in limiting the power of courts to 
punish for contempt, a thing hitherto neglected in 
the State. 

Having lost his first wife, he married Miss Julia 
L. Dumont, March 13, 1862. He has had six chil- 
dren, five by his first, and one by his last wife. 



He has followed his profession with a fair degree 
of success, bestowing great labor upon such new 
questions as have from time to time arisen in the 
course of his practice. In several instances he has, 
it is believed, given a permanent bent to the law 
as decided by the highest tribunal of the State ; 
but has in others failed where ho believed, and still 
believes, that he was right. In such cases he finds 
consolation in the faith that just principles do finally 
triumph, and that his defeats are not final. He has 
not been satisfied to be merely a lawyer, but has 
taken a general view of literature and philosophy. 
Smitten with the love of poetry, he has sometimes 
mistaken it for the impulsions of genius, and essayed 
to sing. Some of his fugitive pieces have met with 
popular favor, and others with neglect. In this way 
he has been preserved from surrendering himself to 
the muses by the dead level of appreciation. He is 
not likely now to be spoiled by the passion for literary 
success. His last published poem shall end this 
sketch. 

THE OPEN GATE. 
I stand far down upon a shaded slope, 
And near the valley of a silent river, 
Whose tideless waters darkling, stagnant mope, 
Through climes beyond the flight of earthward hope, 
Forever and forever. 

No sail is seen upon the sullen stream, 

No breath of air to make it crisp or quiver. 
Nor sun, nor star to shed the faintest gleam 
To cheer its gloom ; but as the Styx, we deem, 
It creeps through might forever. 

An open gate invites my bleeding feet, 

And all life's forces whisper, " We are weary ; 
Pass on and out, thou canst no more repeat 
The golden dreams of youth : and rest is sweet, 
And darkness is not dreary. 

" Pass on and out; the way is plain and straight. 

And countless millions have gone out before thee; 
What shouldst thou fear, since men of every state, 
And clime, and time have found the open gate, 
The gate of death or glory. 

" Then fearless pass down to the silent shore, 

And look not back with aught like vain regretting ; 
The sunny days of life for thee are o'er, 
And thy dark eyes shall hail the light no more,— 
The final sun is setting." 



182 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



They cease; and silent through the gate I glide, 
And down the shore unto the dismal river, 

That doth the lands of Death and Life divide, 

To find, I trust, upon the farther side 
Life, light, and love forever. 

In 1871 the Superior Court of Marion County 
was created with three judges, from the decision of 
any one of whom an appeal lay to all of them in 
"banc." In 1877, March 5, the number of judges 
was increased to four, and reduced again to three by 
the act of May 31, 1879. One of the most noted 
judges of the Superior Court, though not of the first 
three, was Samuel E. Perkins, for many years a 
member of the Supreme Court. 

Samuel Elliott Perkins was born in Brattle- 
boro', Vt., Dec. 6, 1811, being the second son of 
John Trumbull and Catharine Willard Perkins. 
His parents were both natives of Hartford, Conn., 
and were temporarily residing in Brattleboro', where 
his father was pursuing the study of law with Judge 
Samuel Elliott. Before he was five years old his 
father died, and his mother removed with her chil- 
dren to Conway, Mass., where she also died soon 
afterward. Before this, however, Mrs. Perkins 
being unable to support her family, Elliott was 
adopted by William Baker, a respectable farmer of 
Conway, with whum he lived and labored unlil he 
was twenty-one years of age. During this time, by 
the aid of three months' annual schooling in the free 
schools in winter, and by devoting evenings and rainy 
days to books, he secured a good English education, 
and began the study of Latin and Greek. After 
attaining his majority he pursued his studies in 
difierent schools, working for his board and teaching 
in vacation to provide means for tuition and clothing. 
The last year of this course of study was spent at the 
Yates County Academy, N. Y., then under the presi- 
dency of Seymour B. Gookins, Esq., a brother of the 
late Judge Gookins, of Terre Haute, Ind. Having 
obtained a fair classical education he commenced the 
study of law in Penn Yan, the county-seat of Yates 
County, in the office of Thomas J. Nevius, Esq., and 
afterward as a fellow-student of Judge Brinkerhoff, 
late of the Supreme Bench of Ohio, studying in the 
office of Henry Welles, Esq., since one of the judges 



of the Supreme Court of New York. In the fall of 
1836 he came alone, on foot, from Bufl'alo, N. Y., to 
Richmond, Ind., a stranger in a strange land, not 
being acquainted with a single individual in the 
State. His original intention had been to locate in 
Indianapolis, but on reaching Richmond he found 
the roads impassable from recent heavy storms, it 
being necessary to carry even the mails on horse- 
back. Finding it impossible to proceed farther, and 
desiring to lose no time in qualifying himself for 
practice, he inquired for a lawyer's office, and was 
referred to Judge J. W. Borden, then a practicing 
attorney in Richmond, and now criminal judge of 
Allen County. He spent the winter in his office 
doing office work for his board. In the spring of 
1837, after a satisfactory examination before Hon. 
Jehu T. Elliott, Hon. David Kiigore, and Hon. 
Andrew Kennedy, a committee appointed by the 
court for that purpose, he was admitted to the bar 
at Centreville, Wayne Co., Ind. He immediately 
opened an office in Richmond, and soon obtained a 
large and lucrative practice. The Jeffersonian, a 
weekly paper, had been established in 1837 by a 
Democratic club, with Mr. Perkins as editor. In 
1838 the Jeffersonian was sold to Lynde Elliott, 
who conducted it about a year and failed. He had 
mortgaged the press to Daniel Reed, of Fort Wayne, 
for more than its value. Mr. Reed visited Rich- 
mond, after Elliott's failure, for the purpose of mov- 
ing the press to Fort Wayne. Unwilling that the 
Democracy of the place should be without an organ, 
Mr. Perkins came forward and paid off the mort- 
gage, took the press, recommenced the publication 
of the Jeffersonian, and continued it through the 
campaign of 1840. In 1843 he was appointed by 
Governor Wiiitcomb pro.?ecutiug attorney of the 
Sixth Judicial Circuit. In 1844 he was one of the 
electors who cast the vote of the State for Mr. Polk. 
In the winter of 1844, and again in 1845, he was 
nominated by Governor Whitcomb, a cautious man 
and good judge of character, to a seat on the 
Supreme Bench, but was not confirmed. On the 
adjournment of the Legislature, quite unexpectedly 
to himself, he received from the Governor the ap- 
pointment for one year to the office for which he 




^^^^ 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



183 



had been nominated. He was then thirty-four years 
of age, and had been at the bar and a resident of the 
State but nine years. With much reluctance he ac- 
cepted the appointment, having to risk the reelection 
of Governor Whitcomb for a renomination to the 
Senate the following year. He was, however, re- 
elected, and Judge Perkins, having served on the 
beneli one year, was renominated and confirmed by 
the Senate, receiving a two-thirds vote, seven Whig 
senators voting for him. In 1852, and again in 
1858, he was elected, under the new Constitution, by 
the vote of the people to the same position, and was 
therefore on the Supreme Bench nineteen consecu- 
tive years. When, in the stress of political disaster 
in 18G4, he left that court he did not therefore 
despair or retire, but entered at once into the prac- 
tice of his profession. In 1857 he accepted the 
appointment of professor of law in the Northwestern 
Christian (now Butler) University, which position 
he retained several years. In 1870-72 he was 
professor of law at the Indiana State University, at 
Bloomington. He felt much pride and gratification 
in the marked success of so many of his students. 
In addition to his immense labor as one of the 
judges of the Supreme Court and professor of law, 
he prepared in 1858 the " Indiana Digest," a book 
containing eight hundred and seventy pages, and 
requiring in its writing, arrangement, and compila- 
tion for the press a great amount of labor, involving 
the deepest research into the statutes of the State 
and the decisions of the Supreme Court. This work 
has received the approbation of the members of the 
Indiana bar as a work of great merit and utility. In 
1859 he also produced the "Indiana Practice," a 
work requiring an equal amount of labor. In 1868 
he undertook the editorship of the Herald, formerly 
and since the Sentinel, the Democratic State organ. 
In August, 1872, he was appointed by Governor 
Baker, to fill a vacancy caused by the resignation of 
Judge Rand, to a seat on the Superior Bench of 
Marion County, a nisi prius and inferior tribunal, 
one of great labor and responsibility, and discharged 
its duties with all diligence and fidelity. He was 
subsequently elected to the same ofiice in 1874 with- 
out opposition. Nor was there ever a juster act of 



popular gratitude and recognition than when the 
people of the State, in 1876, almost without action 
upon his part, took him from this place and returned 
him to a higher station in the courts of the common- 
wealth which he had formerly so long adorned with 
his presence. To his studious application, which 
supplemented the natural qualities of his mind, much 
was due for the reputation of the Indiana Supreme 
Bench in the days when it was honored for its wis- 
dom. He helped to give it the name it had in the 
days of Blackford and Dewey, his first associates in 
the court, and not the smallest part of the loss occa- 
sioned by his death is, that it deprives the bench of 
the quality it needs most and has least. Shortly after 
Judge Perkins' appointment to the Supreme Bench 
he became a resident of Indianapolis, where he con- 
tinued to live until the time of his death. He took 
a lively interest in the development of the material 
interests of his adopted city, and during his long 
residence there assisted with his means and influence 
in many enterprises looking toward the prosperity of 
Indianapolis. As he was familiar with adversity in 
his early days, and often experienced all that was 
bitter in poverty, his heart continually prompted 
him to acts of benevolence toward the unfortunate 
of his neighborhood. It was a mystery to many how 
he could apply himself professionally with such unre- 
mitting diligence, and at the same time take such a 
lively interest in everything looking toward the pros- 
perity of Indianapolis ; but the fact is he knew no 
rest; he was indefatigable; he never tired when there 
was anything to be done. His life was an unceasing 
round of labors which he never neglected, and which 
he pursued with a devoted industry from which more 
robust constitutions might have recoiled. On politi- 
cal subjects the judge was a pertinent and forcible 
writer, and when his pen engaged in miscellany its 
productions possessed a truthful brevity, perspicuity, 
and beauty which ranked them among the best liter- 
ary productions of the day. His eulogy on the late 
Governor Ashbel P. Willard, delivered in the Senate 
chamber during the November term (1860) of the 
United States District Court, does ample justice to 
the character and memory of that distinguished man ; 
and the sentiments that pervade the entire address 



184 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



bear testimony to the soundness of the head and 
jjuodness of the heart from which they emanated. 
The pith and fibre of his mental faculties are not by 
anything better attested than by the very evident 
growth and progress of his judicial style. His mind 
was of that finest material which does not dull with 
age or become stale with usage. He improved 
steadily and constantly to the very last. His last 
opinions are his best. There is in these a manifest 
terseness, a cautious, careful trimming and lopping oflF 
of all superfluousness ; the core only, the very kernel 
of the point to be decided, is presented. But for this 
tacit acknowledgment of a Aiuit in his earlier writings 
he is not to be upbraided, but commended rather for 
the moral courage necessary in the avowal and avoid- 
ance of such fault. The first, and not the least, 
quality in a judge is thorough integrity of purpose 
and action. In this great qualification he was fault- 
less. In a long and diversified course of public life 
no charge was ever made against him of corruption 
or oppression, or even of discourtesy or unkindness. 
In his intercourse, whether with his colleagues of the 
bench and bar, or with the people at large, no stain 
was ever found upon the ermine which he wore. 
Too much praise can hardly be bestowed upon the 
firmness with which he maintained his political 
integrity. In early life an ardent friend and sup- 
porter of the principles of Jackson and Jefi'erson, he 
remained faithful in his adherence to them to the 
end. There were many notable examples in his day 
of political apostasy ; there were many of his contem- 
poraries who, yielding to what was called the force of 
circumstances, did 

" Crook the pregnant hinges of the knee, 
That thrift might follow fawning." 

But he was not of the number. At the grand 
assizes of the future, posterity will award to the 
late chief justice of Indiana the white glove of 
purity, in token of a lengthened term of public ser- 
vice in which justice was administered without fear, 
without favor, and without reproach. Judge Per- 
kins died of paralysis of the brain, at his residence 
on West New York Street, Indianapolis, at mid- 
night, Dec. 17, 1879, in the sixty-ninth year of his 
age. He died full of years and honors. 



It seldom falls to the lot of a single individual in 
these feverish and changeful times to fill a position 
of such high honor and trust in the State such a 
length of time. As is customary on the death of a 
member of the profession, a bar meeting was called, 
and, after appropriate remarks, the following memo- 
rial was reported by Governor Baker, as chairman 
of a special committee : 

" Again, in the history of the State, death has entered the 
Supreme Court and made vacant a seat upon its bench. The 
chief justice is dead. ^Ye meet to do suitable honor to the 
name and memory, and mourn the death, of Judge Perkins. 
Uis eminent success is an encouragement, bis death an admo- 
nition. Endowed with strong and active faculties, he pursued 
the purposes of his life with fortitude and determination, and 
at the close of his career he stood among the distinguished of a 
profession in which distinction must be merited to be achieved. 

" He was successful in life, and attained exalted position and 
enjoyed the admiration and approval of his countrymen, not 
only because of his excellent natural endowments, but also 
beeanse his faculties were cultivated and developed by diligent 
labor, and beautified by extensive and useful learning, and also 
because his motives were pure and his conduct upright. In 
this we have a lesson und an encouragement. 

'• The people gave him high honor, and made it as enduring 
as the laws and the records of the State. His name is forever 
interwoven in our judicial history. So long as society shall 
remain org.anized under the government of law will the student 
of laws consult his opinions and decisions. Through coming 
generations will his labor and learning influence both the legis- 
lator and the judge. 

"He was an able and faithful judge, and brought honor on 
our profession. We will cherish his memory. 

" In his death we are admonished that no earthly distinction 
can defeat or postpone the * inevitable hour.' 

'The paths of glory lead but to the grave.' 

"To his family and kindred we extend our sympathy." 

Judge Perkins was married, in 1838, to Amanda 
Juliette Pyle, daughter of Joseph Pyle, a prominent 
citizen of Richmond, Ind. By this marriage there 
were ten children, three of whom lived to maturity. 
Mary married Oscar B. Hord, and died in 187-1, 
leaving four sons, — Samuel E. P., Henry E., Frank 
T., and Ricketts Hord. Emma married H. C. Hol- 
brook, and died without children. Samuel Elliott, 
Jr., the only one now living, married Sue E. Hatch, 
and has two little sons, — Samuel Elliott and Volney 
Hatch Perkins. 

In the three " rooms" or divisions of the Superior 



CITY OP INDIANAPOLIS. 



185 



Court is now transacted mucli the larger proportion 
of all the civil business of the county, except probate 
business, which all goes to the Circuit Court. The 
sessions run on almost continuously from one year's 
end to another. The succession of judges will be 
fiiund in the appended list of county officers. Among 
those who have served with efficiency and high credit 
none have left the bench with a more desirable 
record and reputation than Judge John A. Holman. 

John A. Holman comes of English stock. His 
■great-grandfather, George Holman, was born in Mary- 
land, Feb. 11, 1762. When sixteen years of age he 
went with his uncle to Kentucky, where they settled 
near the site of the city of Louisville. In February, 
1781, while going to Harrodsburg, he with his com- 
panions were captured by the Indians, carried as a 
prisoner into what is now the northern part of Ohio, 
where he was compelled to run the gauntlet and 
barely escaped death. Not long afterwards he was 
sentenced by a council to be burned at the stake, but 
was rescued by a warrior who adopted him as a son. 
He was in captivity three years and a half when the 
tribe consented that he might return to Kentucky to 
obtain supplies for them, in company with some of 
their number. Returning through the forest they 
struck the Ohio River a few miles above Louisville, 
and, with guns and blankets lashed to their backs, 
swam the river. Young Holman was at once ran- 
somed and immediately entered the service of Gen. 
George Rogers Clark, and served under him in the 
following campaign. 

On his return from captivity he had passed down 
the White Water, and was delighted with the coun- 
try. In 180-1 he, with two friends, returned to the 
White Water country and selected a home on the 
east bank of the river, about two miles south of 
where the city of Richmond now stands, to which he 
removed his family in the following spring. They 
were the first settlers in Wayne County, where he 
resided the remainder of his life. 

His son William was a captain in the war of 1812, 
and afterwards became a Methodist preacher on the 
frontier, and was widely known for his zealous devo- 
tion to the establishment of the principles of Meth- 
odism. James, another son of the old pioneer, was 



well known for his steady integrity. His younge.st 
son was George G. Holman, who married Mary, the 
daughter of Governor James Brown Ray. Ho was 
a leading merchant in Centreville for many years, 
from whence he removed to Indianapolis. 

John A. Holman, the subject of this sketch, is the 
youngest child of George G. and Mary Holman. He 
was born in the city of Indianapoli.s on April 16, 
1849. He was educated at the Northwestern Chris- 
tian University, graduating at the age of seventeen. 
Even before this he had determined to devote his life 
to the profession of the law. Immediately after com- 
mencement-day he began his studies under the in- 
struction of those eminent jurists, Samuel E. Perkins 
and David McDonald, and was admitted to the bar, 
ex gratia, upon their recommendation, when but nine- 
teen years of age. 

Martin M. Ray, his kinsman, then practicing at 
the Indianapolis bar, was so well pleased with the 
boy that he took him into his office at once as an as- 
sociate, with whom he remained in active practice 
until the sudden death of Mr. Ray, in August, 1872. 
Although now only twenty-two years of age, he had 
already taken higli rank at the bar, and continued to 
practice alone with eminent success until 1876, when, 
on Judge Perkins being again elected to the Supreme 
Bench, young Holman was at the age of twenty- 
seven appointed by Governor Hendricks to the va- 
cancy on the Superior Bench of this city. His early 
training and profound knowledge of the principles of 
jurisprudence eminently fitted him for the discharge 
of judicial functions. He knew the source and his- 
tory of the law. He was familiar with the origin 
and development of the rules of property and busi- 
ness, whether found in statutes or recorded only in 
the treatises and reports. His knowledge was so 
thorough and his faculties so well disciplined, that 
from the beginning he presided with dignity and even 
justice. He remained upon the bench until the end 
of the year 1882, when he again returned to the bar. 

The bar of Indianapolis has had the good fortune 
to be steadily recruited from the local bars of the 
State, and it has thus become possessed of no incon- 
siderable share of their ability and reputation. It 
has in a measure swallowed them as fast as they 



186 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



showed force enough to be felt beyond their local 
limits. A lawyer in a county town attracts atten- 
tion, in time gets to be prominent in politics, is 
elected to a State office, comes to the capital, and 
stays. Others, for the advantages offered by the Su 
preme and Federal Courts, come and settle here perma 
nently. Thus came here Governor David Wallace 
William J. Brown, Oliver H. Smith, Caleb B. Smith 
Ovid Butler, Samuel E. Perkins, Oliver P. Morton 
Thomas A. Hendricks, Conrad Baker, Joseph E 
McDonald, John M. Butler, Jonathan W. Gordon 
Ralph Hill, William Henderson, Oscar B. Hord 
Benjamin Harrison, and others. Among members 
of the city bar of national reputation, professionally 
and politically, are ex-Governor and Senator Oliver 
P. Morton, ex-Governor and ex-Senator Thomas 
A. Hendricks, and ex-Senator Joseph E. McDon- 
ald. 

Oliver Perry Morton. — In the little village of 
Saulsbury, Wayne Co., Ind., on the 4th day of 
August, 1823, Oliver Perry Morton was born. He 
was of English descent, his grandfather having emi- 
grated from England about the beginning of the Revo- 
lutionary war, and settled in New Jersey. His 
mother died when he was quite young. After the 
death of his mother the most of his boyhood days 
were spent with his grandparents in Ohio, and with 
his widowed aunts in Centreville, Ind. His op- 
portunities for education were rather limited, and at 
the age of fifteen he was put to learn the hatter's 
trade with his half-brother, William T. Morton. At 
this occupation he worked four years, employing all 
his spare time in study. Early in 1843 he entered 
Miami University, at Oxford, Ohio. He remained 
there two years in hard study. While there he was 
counted the best debater in the University, and dis- 
played the powers of presenting an argument that 
afterwards made him so famous. 

On leaving college he entered the office of Hon. 
John S. Newman, at Centreville, and began the study 
of law. He was then nearly twenty-two years of 
age. On the 15th of May, 1845, he married Miss 
Lucinda M. Burbank, daughter of Isaac Burbank, of 
that place. This marriage proved a most happy one, 
his chosen companion holding and exercising over him 



from their marriage until his death an influence that 
did much to advance his fame. 

He went into the study of the law as he did every- 
thing else— with all the energy and industry he had. 
I His preceptor said of him that he was a most labori- 
ous student, occupying all his time in mastering the 
fundamental principles. He did nothing half-way. 
He centred all the powers of his mind on his study, 
and his intense application brought its reward. In 
1847 he was admitted to the bar, and entered the 
practice of the law in Centreville. Although Indiana 
then had not attained to the powerful position she has 
since occupied, the bar of Wayne County was an ex- 
ceptionally strong one, and one that would have ranked 
high in any State. It numbered among its members 
such men as John S. Newman, Caleb B. Smith, James 
Rariden, Samuel W. Parker, Jehu T. Elliott, and 
others. It was among these men young Morton ex- 
pected to try his fortunes. They were the men he 
was to meet and combat. They were men learned in 
the law, men of high character, with reputations 
already established, and a young man to occupy a 
place among them had to be possessed of more than 
ordinary ability. Among these men he soon came to 
be acknowledged a sound lawyer, and they found that 
in him they met one able to cope with them before 
the bench or jury. Business multiplied, and he was 
retained in many important cases in all the neighbor- 
ing counties. lu 1852 he was appointed judge of 
the circuit. He had only been practicing five years 
when he received this high honor. In a circuit com- 
posed of such distinguished law3'ers as those men- 
tioned above, this appointment at so early an age was 
no light honor, and is but an evidence of the ability 
he was recognized as possessing. He only remained 
on the bench a year, when he relinquished it to again 
enter active practice, in which he continued until 
1860. 

Some men have been disposed to look upon him as 
more of a politician than a lawyer, and to regard his 
legal attainments as being limited. This was not the 
judgment of those who knew him. In fact, it is con- 
trary to the natural order of things for a man with 
his analytical mind and his powers of application to 
have been a poor lawyer. The universal testimony 




-^T- i.i'G.E.PeiiMSiC'^i' 




M^/^^ 



OLI\^R P MOHTON 

GOVERNOR OF INDIANA. 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



187 



of those who met him at the bar is that he was a 
master. His o;reat faculty was his power of going to 
the very root of a thing. He studied his cases 
closely, seized upon the salient points, and those he 
presented with vigor and skill. He discarded all the 
tricks so often resorted to by lawyers, and depended 
solely upon the law and the facts. When he was 
ready to go into the trial of a case he was prepared 
at all points ; there were no surprises in store for 
him, but he was thoroughly conversant with every 
feature of the case and the law bearing upon it. He 
seemed to deal with the great principles of the law, 
and to apply them to the case at bar, disdaining to 
seize upon quibbles or technicalities. In his addresses 
to the court or jury he was always impressive, build- 
ing his facts into an edifice, cemented by the law, 
that was impregnable against all attacks. One who 
knew him well, and had met him at the bar, said of 
him, " His great characteristic was that he studied 
up his cases, and he never came into court without 
giving evidence of careful preparation. ... I dis- 
tinctly remember that in the four years before he 
was called into the service of the State he literally 
annihilated everybody connected with the bar of 
Wayne County, and walked rough-shod over all 
other lawyers of the circuit. . . . There are prob- 
ably few men who have at the same age surpassed him 
in ability and success." His success was demonstrated 
by the fact that when he left the practice in 1860 
he was the leading attorney in all Eastern Indiana, 
and was engaged in every prominent case. After his 
death the bar of Indianapolis adopted unanimously 
a memorial, in which it was said, " Having chosen 
his profession, Senator Morton's place in it by natural 
right was in the front rank, and, without a struggle, 
he was conspicuous there by force of character, gen- 
erous stores of knowledge, and eminent ability. He 
was a judge remarkable for the wise, speedy, and 
impartial administration of justice on an important 
circuit at an age when most men are making their 
first steps in professional life." The men who drafted 
the memorial and adopted it knew whereof they 
spoke, for Mr. Morton had been called at one time 
to preside over the Circuit Court of Indianapolis. 
Of that time one of the most prominent lawyers of 



Indianapolis said, " I saw him but once in the exor- 
cise of the functions of judge. . . . His decision 
was a clear and forcible enunciation of the law, 
which left no doubt in the minds of those who heard 
it of its correctness." His great political rival, Hun. 
Thomas A. Hendricks, said of him at a public meet- 
ing, " I never met Governor Morton in court, and 
had no knowledge of his habit in the management 
of cases. I have heard from others, however, that 
which convinces me that he was very able, and I 
know he must have been, because he possessed every 
qualification for eminence in our profession." Such 
was the testimony universally given. 

All his speeches on'the stump, in the Senate of the 
United States, all his messages to the State Legisla- 
ture, show an intimate knowledge of the great prin- 
ciples of law, especially constitutional law. One re- 
markable instance of this kind he exhibited in his 
speech on the right of secession. It had been 
claimed upon all hands that there was no power 
inherent in the government to coerce a State. In 
that speech he took the ground that secession was 
the act of individuals and not of States, and ought to 
be so regarded ; that the individuals could not shield 
themselves behind State governments. This. was the 
key to the whole problem. The late Senator Matt 
H. Carpenter, who had been associated with him in 
the investigation of the Louisiana case, said, " No 
one need tell me that Morton is not a great lawyer. 
I know better. I have seen him and been a witness 
to his power and knowledge of the law." Senator 
Thurman, in one of the debates, said, " The Senator 
from Indiana may have been a lawyer at one time, 
but has been too much engaged in politics, and has 
forgotten the law on this subject. He has not kept 
up his reading." Senator Morton's only reply was to 
call from memory for the reading by the secretary of 
passages of law from a large number of authorities, 
all so applicable to the case and so much against the 
position taken by his opponent, that Senator Thur- 
man was overwhelmed and signally defeated. 

Senator Morton was a Democrat in politics iu his 
earlier years, and always took a deep interest in polit- 
ical affairs. In 1854, when the Missouri Compromise 
was repealed, Mr. Morton was one of the vast army 



188 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



who left the Democratic party and united to stem the 
tide of slavery aggression, and he became the leader 
of the new party in his section of the State. He 
attended the Pittsburgh Convention in 1856, and 
actively participated in its discussions. On the first 
of May of that year the new party met at Indianap- 
olis to nominate a State ticket. Mr. Morton was 
elected unanimously to head the ticket. His oppo- 
nent was Hon. A. P. Willard, the idol of his party, 
and who was regarded as the ablest sturap speaker in 
the State. A joint canvass was arranged, nnd the 
champion of the new party soon proved himself more 
than a match for his opponent in debate. His strong, 
logical arguments utterly drove his antagonist from 
all his defenses. The election resulted in favor of 
the Democrats, and Mr. Morton thousrht his polit- 
ical career was ended. The Republican party grew 
very rapidly between 185G and 1860. In the latter 
year he accepted the second place on the ticket with 
Hon. Henry S. Lane as its head. Ho throw himself 
heart and soul into the canvass, and was everywhere 
recognized as the most powerful debater in either 
party. This time his party was successful. 

The anticipated election of Mr. Lincoln as Presi- 
dent had brought about threats of secession, and his 
success was no sooner heralded than South Carolina 
made haste to take herself, as she thought, out of the 
Union. It was a critical time. All hearts feared the 
Union was gone. The prevailing sentiment seemed 
to be that there was no remedy for secession. The 
Democrats held that there was no power to coerce a 
State, and the leading Republicans were advocating 
that the "wayward sister" should be permitted to de- 
part in peace. There were stormy forebodings on all 
sides. The idea of civil war was abhorrent, yet the 
loyal people did not like the idea of having the Union 
dismembered. In the midst of this general gloom 
there came a lightning flash which electrified the 
North and startled the South. On the 22d of No- 
vember a monster meeting was held in Indianapolis to 
ratify the election of Lincoln. The newly-elected 
Governor Lane and others spoke. Their speeches 
were of a conciliatory nature. At length Lieutenant- 
Governor Morton arose, and in his very first words 
the vast audience saw that the man had come with 



the hour. There was no uncertainty with him. He 
at the very outset announced that if the issue was to 
be disunion and war, he was for war. It was a mo- 
mentous occasion, and he felt that he was speaking 
for the Republican party, and not alone for it, but for 
the whole loyal element of the country, and his 
measured words fell upon the air like the notes of a 
bugle calling men to action. He discussed the right 
of secession and the power to coerce, and gave to the 
acts of South Carolinians an interpretation none be- 
fore had been clear-sighted enough to see. On coer- 
cion he said, — 

"What is coercion but tlie enforcement of tlie law? Is any- 
thing else intended or required? Secession or nullification can 
only be regarded by the general government as individual 
action upon individual responsibility. Those concerned in it 
cannot intrench themselves behind the forms of the State gov- 
ernment so as to give their conduct the semblance of legality, 
and thus devolve the responsibility upon the State government, 
which of itself is irresponsible. The Constitution and laws of 
the United States operate upon individuals, but not upon St.ates, 
and precisely as if there were no States. In this matter the 
President has no discretion. He has taken a solemn oath to 
enforce the laws and preserve order, and to this end he has been 
made commander-in-chief of the army and navy. How can 
he be absolved from responsibility thus devolved upon him by 
the Constitution and his official oath?" 

He demonstrated that there was no right of seces- 
sion belonging to the States ; that they were parts of 
a whole and could not dissolve the connection, and 
that if they attempted to dissolve the Union force 
must be employed. He said, — 

"The right of secession conceded, the nation is dissolved. 
Instead of having a nation, one mighty people, we have but a 
collection and combination of thirty-three independent nnd 
petty States, held together by a treaty which has hitherto been 
called a Constitution, of the infraction of which each State is to 
be the judge, and from which any State may withdraw at 
pleasure. . . . The right of secession conceded, and the way to 
do it having been shown to be safe and easy, the prestige of the 
Republic gone, the national pride extinguished with the na- 
tional idea, secession would become the remedy for every State 
or sectional grievance, real or imaginary. ... -If South Caro- 
lina gets out of the Union, I trust it will be at the point of the 
bayonet, after our best efforts have failed to compel her to sub- 
mission to the laws. Better concede her independence to force, 
to revolution, than to right and principle. Such a concession 
cannot be drawn into precedent and construed into an admis- 
sion that we are but a combination of petty States, any one of 
which has a right to secede and set up for herself whenever it 



I 



CITY OP INDIANAPOLIS. 



189 



suits her tempei- or views of peculiar interest. Such a contest, 
let it terminate as it may, would be a declaration to the other 
States of the only terms upon which they would be permitted to 
withdraw from the Union. . . . Shnll we now surrender the 
nation without a struggle, and let the Union go with merely a 
few hard words ? If it was worth a bloody struggle to establish 
this nation, it is worth one to preserve it, and I trust that we 
shall not, by surrendering with indeoeut haste, publish to the 
world that the inheritance our fathers purchased with their 
blood we have given up to save ours." 

In concluding, he struck the key-note of the whole 
in declaring and emphasizing that we are a nation 
and not a combination of States. Upon this point 
he said, — 

"We must, then, cling to the idea that we are a nation, one 
and indivisible, and that, although subdivided by State lines 
for local and domestic purposes, we are but one people, the 
citizens of a common country, having like institutions and 
manners, and possessing a common interest in that inheritance 
of glory so richly provided by our fathers. We must, therefore, 
do no act, we must tolerate no act, we must concede no idea 
or theory that looks to or involves the dismemberment of the 
nation. . . . Seven years is but a day in the life of a nation, 
and I woulrl rather come out of a struggle at the end of that 
time, defeated in arms and conceding independence to success- 
ful revolution, than to purchase present peace by the concession 
of .a principle that must inevitably explode this nation into 
small and dishonored fragments. . . . The whole question is 
summed up in this proposition : ' Are we one nation, one peo- 
]>Ie, or thirty-three nations, or thirty-three independent and 
petty States ?* The statement of the proposition furnishes the 
answer. If we are one nation, then no State has a right to 
secede. Secession can only be the result of successful revolu- 
tion. I answer the question for you, and I know that my 
answer will find a true response in every true American heart, 
that we are one people, one nation, undivided and indivisible." 

This was the first time that resistance upon the 
part of the North had been advocated. It touched 
the popular chord everywhere. From that tiilie on 
there was no hesitancy upon the part of the loyal 
masses. Mr. Lincoln, when he read it, said that " it 
covers the whole ground, and declares the policy of 
the government." That speech made Mr. Morton a 
leader in national politics. 

On the 14th day of January, 1861, he took the 
oath of office as president of the Senate. Two days 
afterward Governor Lane resigned to take his seat in 
the United States Senate, and Mr. Morton became 
Governor of the State. The history of his adminis- 
tration of the affairs of the State for six years has 



become the foundation-stone of his fame. He every- 
where became known as the great War Governor. 
When the war came in April, as he had been the 
first to predict that it would come, and the first to 
crystallize the loyal sentiment of the North, so he was 
the first to respond to the call of the President for 
troops. At his word Indiana sprang to arms, and 
thousands of her loyal sons answered the call of the 
President for six regiments. Here was a chance for 
his wonderful executive ability. Indiana, like the 
other Northern States, was unprepared for war. 
She had but few men in her borders who were 
possessed of any military training. Volunteers were 
plenty, but how to arm and equip them was the 
trouble. Governor Morton was equal to the emer- 
gency. He grasped the situation at a glance, and 
seemed to be everywhere present, stirring and ani- 
mating the citizens, bringing order out of chaos, and 
reducing all to a system, so that in comparatively few 
days Indiana was a vast military camp, and troops 
were ready for the field. An agent was sent to the 
leading manufacturers of the East and Canada to 
purchase arms. He gave but few hours to sleep in 
those days, but wore out his secretaries in continuous 
labors. During the four years of the war this intense 
strain was continued. A large number of the people 
of his State were opposed to the war, and thousands 
of them actively sympathized with the Rebellion. 
These things added to his labors. He was the 
youngest of all the loyal Governors, but so mani- 
fest was his ability, so lofty his patriotism, so hope- 
ful was he in the darkest hours, that all turned to 
him for counsel. President Lincoln and his great 
war secretary trusted him and leaned upon him as 
they did upon no one else. He was often consulted 
by the generals in the field, especially those in the 
West, in regard to the movements of the army, and 
he was always the first one appealed to for help and 
reinforcements. No such appeal was ever made in 
vain. Of the high opinion entertained of him and 
his labors by the members of Mr. Lincoln's cabinet, 
the following extract from a letter written by Hon. 
S. P. Chase to Governor Morton in 1865, will evi- 
dence. Mr. Chase wrote him a letter stating that, 
1 in a conversation with Secretary Stanton the night 



190 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



before, " we naturally, turning our minds to the i 
past, fell to talking of you. We agreed that no 
Governor rendered such services, or displayed such 1 
courage or more ability in administration ; and we 
agreed that your recent services were most meritor- i 
ious of all, because rendered under circumstances of 
greatest personal risk of health and life, and which 
would have been by almost any man regarded, and 
by all accepted, as good reasons for total inaction. 
I have seldom heard Stanton express himself so 
warmly." 

As we said before, the war found the North unpre- 
pared. In the autumn of 1861 he found that the 
general government would be unable to supply the 
men with overcoats in time to prevent suflFering from 
the cold. He went to New York and purchased 
twenty-nine thousand overcoats for the use of the 
Indiana troops. The soldiers were his first care. 
To relieve the sick and wounded he organized a sani- 
tary commission, which afterwards was adopted by 
the other States. To show his deep interest in the 
soldiers, and the care he took of their interests, it 
may be mentioned that during the siege of Vicks- 
burg, when the army hospitals were full of sick and 
wounded, he applied to the Secretary of War for per- 
mission to remove the Indiana sick and wounded to 
the North. The secretary declined to grant the per- 
mission. Governor Morton declared his intention to 
take the matter before the President. He did so, 
and the result was a general order permitting not 
only Indiana, but any other State to remove the sick 
and wounded and care for them. Under the system 
of relief inaugurated by him, Indiana collected and 
disbursed over six hundred thousand dollars in money 
and supplies. 

In this short sketch we can do no more than 
glance at his work as Governor. In 18t)2 the Dem- 
ocrats elected a Legislature hostile to the war, and 
efforts were made to cripple the Governor in the dis- 
charge of his duties. They refused to make appro- 
priations to carry on the State government and to 
meet the interest on the public debt. Governor 
Iilorton was undismayed. He went to New York, 
and through the banking firm of Winslow, Lanier & 
Co. and some of the counties of the State and a few 



of the patriotic citizens, arranged for money for the 
use of the State. He established a financial bureau 
without authority of law, and in one year and nine 
months he raised and paid out over a million of dol- 
lars. Every dollar of this was paid out upon his own 
check, and not a dollar was lost or misappropriated. 

His extraordinary activity was well demonstrated 
in 1862, during the invasion of Kentucky by Gens. 
Bragg and Kirby Smith. These two active rebel gen- 
erals had slipped around Gen. Buell and invaded 
Kentucky, threatening both Louisville and Cincin- 
nati. On the 17th of August, late at night, he re- 
ceived a telegram that Kentucky had been invaded 
at several points. Before night of the 18th one 
regiment was mustered in, armed, and started for the 
scene of action. During the night of the 18th four 
more regiments were forwarded. On the morning of 
the 19th some of the patriotic banks and citizens 
advanced half a million dollars, and during the day 
and night four more regiments were paid and sent 
forward. By the 31st of August more than thirty 
thousand troops had been armed and sent to the relief 
of Kentucky. All this time the arsenal of the State 
was employed day and night in the manufacture of 
ammunition, making three hundred thousand rounds 
daily, and all the river towns of the State were occu- 
pied by the State militia. Ohio as well as Kentucky 
wanted help. Cincinnati was threatened. Governor 
Morton was called upon, and Indiana troops rushed 
to the defense of her sister State. Ammunition was 
wanted for the heavy guns being placed in position. 
The mayor of Cincinnati and Committee of Defense 
telegraphed to Columbus for a supply. They were 
instructed to make out a requisition in due form and 
have it approved by the commanding oflScer, and for- 
ward it, and the ammunition would be supplied. 
They then applied to Governor Morton. No requi- 
sition was a.sked for, but the telegraph flashed back 
the answer that in an hour a train would start; and 
the train did so, bearing about four thousand rounds 
for artillery and seven hundred and twenty tliou.sand 
rounds for small-arms. In eight days Indiana sup- 
plied thirty-three thousand rounds for artillery and 
three million three hundred and sixty-five thousand 
for small-arms, the entire amount having been made 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



191 



at the State arsenal. For his services the Cincinnati 
Common Council ordered his portrait painted and 
placed in the City Hall, which was done with impos- 
ing ceremonies. 

In 1864, in the midst of a heated Presidential 
canvass, the exposure came of the organization known 
as the Knights of the Golden Circle, or Sons of Lib- 
erty. This organization numbered fifty thousand 
members in the State, and an uprising was planned. 
Governor Morton had possessed himself of all their 
secrets, and before they knew that they were even 
suspected he dealt them a terrible blow and crushed 
them. He ordered the arrest of the prominent leaders 
of the movement, and so alarmed were the members 
to find that their plots were known, and that they 
were in the power of a man whose hatred of treason 
was so intense, and who was so unrelenting in his 
efforts to crush all disloyalty, that dismay seized 
upon them and they stood bewildered, not knowing 
what to expect. The trial and conviction of the 
leaders is a part of the general history of the country. 

Governor Morton was triumphantly elected to the 
office of Governor in 1864, and the people placed a 
loyal Legislature to help him. It was the grandest 
political triumph ever achieved in this State. He 
entered upon the new term filled with the same 
ardor, the same resistless energy, the same tireless 
activity. But the war soon closed. It brought no 
relief to him from labor. But now came his greatest 
trial. His labors had been incessant for more than 
four years, the strain upon his nervous system had 
been intense, and he was now to pay the penalty. 
One morning in 1865 he awoke to find that paralysis 
hail seized upon his left leg. This leg had been 
injured by a fall, and the disease struck the weakest 
spot. Overwork had stricken him down in the noon- 
tide of his power, and just as he saw his fame ripen- 
ing. He was advised to go to Europe and place him- 
himsclf under medical treatment. He convoked the 
Legislature in extra session. It assembled on the 
14th of November, when he read a message wliich 
surpassed all his others in the comprehensive manner 
with which it treated of State and national policy. 
Ho concluded it with the following eloquent tribute 
to the American soldier : 



" The war has established upon imperishable foundatioDS the 
great fundamental truth of the unity and indivisibility of the 
I nation. We are many States but one people, havinj; one undi- 
j Tided sovereignty, one flag, and one common destiny. It has 
i also established, to be confessed by all the world, the exalted 
character of the American soldier, his matchless valor, his self- 
sacrificing patriotism, his capacity to endure fatigues and 
hardships, and his humanity, which, in the midst of carnage, 
has wreathed his victorious achievements with a brighter glory. 
He has taught the world a lesson before which it stands in 
amazement, how, when the storm of battle had passed, he 
could lay aside his arms, put ofT the habiliments of war, and 
return with cheerfulness to the gentle pursuits of peace, and show 
how the bravest of soldiers could become the best of citizens. 
To the army and navy, under the favor of Providence, we owe 
the preservation of our country, and the fact that we have to- 
day a place, and the proudest place, among the nations. Let it 
not be said of us, as it was said in olden time, ' that Republics 
are ungrateful.' Let us honor the dead, cherish the living, 
and preserve in immortal memory the deeds and virtues' of all, 
as an inspiration for countless generations to come." 

The parting scene was of the most aifecting char- 
acter. Party lines were forgotten ; all recognized the 
great services rendered by the stricken man, and all 
joined in words of commendation and sympathy. Pew 
States, few Legislatures, if any, ever witnessed such 
a scene. None who were present will ever forget it. 
It was a sublime as well as touching spectacle. 

Early in December he sailed from New York, and 
spent some time in France, Italy, and Switzerland, 
but received little or no benefit from either travel or 
treatment, and in March, 1866, he returned. He 
gave himself no rest, but at once commenced the 
preparations for the political campaign of that year. 
He opened the campaign in a speech at Masonic Hall, 
which has been pronounced the greatest political 
speech ever made in America. It seemed as if he 
had determined to crush his political opponents at the 
outset of the campaign and render them powerless. 
He employed all of his wonderful powers of logic to 
arraign his opponents at the bar of public opinion 
for what he considered their political failures. The 
speech not only served as a basis for the platform of 
his party, but for all other speeches during the cam- 
paign. It lashed his enemies to fury, but it aroused 
his party to the very highest pitch of enthusiasm. 

Oliver P. Morton was twice elected a member of 
the United States Senate by the Republicans, his first 



192 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



term commencing on the 4th day of March, 1867, 
and his second on the 4th day of March, 1873. The 
limits of this sketch forbid anything like an attempt 
at a history of his senatorial labors. During his ten 
years of service he was foremost in all things, — in 
debates, in party counsels, in labors. It is not in- 
vidious to say of him that in labors he was more 
abundant than any other, notwithstanding his physical 
disability. He entered the Senate at a stirring time. 
The war was ended, but the South was in a state of 
chaos. What was to be done, and how to do it, were 
the two questions uppermost in the minds of all. 
There was an irreconcilable quarrel between Congress 
and the President. At the very outset of his sena- 
torial career, although it was his first legislative ex- 
perience, he was given three important places. He 
was made chairman of the Committee on Manufactures, 
and a member of the Committee on Foreign Relations 
and that of Military Affairs. 

The first great question in which he took part was 
that of reconstruction. He went into the Senate with 
well-settled views upon this question. He had held 
tenaciously to the idea that this was a nation, and he 
insisted upon that on all occasions. He looked upon 
treason as a crime deserving of punishment. He 
could not be led to believe that those who had laid 
down their arms after a four years' struggle to over- 
throw the Government could safely be intrusted with 
power until, at least, they had given evidence of 
having renewed their allegiance. He was inspired 
by no hatred of the people of the South ; it Was their 
treason he hated. His first speech on this question 
was an impromptu reply to Senator Doolittle, of Wis- 
consin. In that speech, brief as it was, he outlined 
his whole after-attitude on this question. He said, — 
** The issue here to-day is the same which prevails through- 
out the country, which will be the issue of this canvass, and 
perhaps for years to come. It is between two paramount ideas, 
each struggling for the supremacy. One is, that the war to 
suppress the Rebellion was right and just on our part; that the 
rebels forfeited their civil and political rights, which can 
only be restored to them upon such conditions as the nation 
may prescribe for its future safety and prosperity. The other 
idea is, that the rebellion was not sinful, but was right; that 
those engaged in it forfeited no rights, civil or political, and 
have a right to take charge of their State governments, and be 
restored to their representation in Congress, just as if there were 



no rebellion and nothing bad occurred. The immediate issue 
before the Senate now is between the existing State govern- 
ments established under the President of the United States in 
the rebel States and the plan of reconstruction presented by 
Congress." 

He then proceeded to demonstrate that Congress 
had all the power that was necessary to formulate or 
dictate to the States the kind of a constitution they 
should adopt, and that it was in duty bound to insure 
justice, security, and equality to all classes in the 
South, and said, — • 

'• Sir, when Congress entered upon this work it had become 
apparent to all men that loyal republican State governments, 
such as are required by the Constitution, could not be erected 
and maintained upon the basis of the white population. We 
had tried them. Congress had attempted the work of recon- 
struction through the fourteenth constitutional amendment by 
leaving the suffrage with the white men, and by leaving with 
the white people of the South the question as to when the col- 
ored people should exercise the right of suffrage, if ever; but 
when it was found that those white men were as rebellious as 
ever; when it was found that they persecuted the loyal men, 
both white and black, in their midst; when it was found that 
Northern men who had gone down there were driven out by 
social tyranny, by a thousand annoyances, by the insecurity of 
life and property, then it became apparent to all men of intel- 
ligence that reconstruction could not take place upon the basis 
of the white population, and something else must be done. 
Now, sir, what was then left to do ? Either we must hold these 
people continually by military power or we must use such ma- 
chinery on such a new basis as would enable loyal republican 
governments to be raised up : and in the last result I will say 
Congress waited long, the nation waited long, — experience had 
to come to the rescue of reason before the thing was done. In 
the last resort, and as the last thing to be done. Congress deter- 
mined to dig through all the rubbish, dig through the soil and 
the shifting sands, and go down to the eternal rock, and there, 
upon the basis of the everlasting principle of equal and exact 
justice to all men, we have planted the column of reconstruc- 
tion ; and, sir, it will rise, slowly but surely, and * the gates of 
hell sh:ill not prevail against it.' " 

On the charge of inconsistency on the subject of 
negro suffrage he said, — 

"Why, sir, let me frankly say to my friend from Wisconsin 
that I approached universal colored suffrage in the South re- 
luctantly. Not because I adhered to the miserable dogma that 
this was the white man's government, hut because I entertained 
fears about at once intrusting a large body of men just from 
slavery — to whom education had been denied by law, to whom 
the marriage relation had been denied, who had been made the 
most abject slaves — with political power. And the senator 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



193 



has referred to a speech which I made in Indiana in 1865. 
Allow me to show the principle which then actuated me, for in 
that speech I said, ' In regard to the question of admitting the 
freeduien of the Southern States to vote, while I admit the 
equal rights of all men, and that in time all men will have the 
right to vote, without distinction of color or race, I yet believe 
that in the case of four million slaves just freed from bondage 
there should be a period of probation and preparation before 
they are brought to the exercise of political power.' Such was 
my feeling at that time, for it had not then been determined by 
the bloody experience of the past two years that we could not 
reconstruct upon the basis of the white population, and such 
was the opinion of a great majority of the people of the 
North. ... I confess (and I do it without shame) that I have 
been educated by the great events of the war. The American 
people have been educated rapidly ; and the man that says he 
has learned nothing, that he stands now where did six years 
ago, is like an ancient mile-post by the side of a deserted high- 
way." 

He concluded as follows : 

"The column of reconstruction has risen slowly. It has not 
been hewn from a single stone. It is composed of many blocks, 
painfully laid up and put together, and cemented by the tears 
and blood of the nation. Sir, we have done nothing arbitrarily. 
We have done nothing for punishment — aye, too little for pun- 
ishment. Justice has not had her demand. Not a man has yet 
been executed for this great treason. The arch-fiend himself is 
now at liberty upon bail. No man is to be punished; and now 
while punishment has gone by, as we all know, we are insisting 
only upon security for the future. We are simply asking that 
the evil spirits who brought this war upon us shall not again 
come into power during this generation, again to bring upon us 
rebellion and calamity. We are simply asking for those secu- 
rities that we deem necessary for our peace and the peace of our 
posterity.*' 

To Senator Morton more tlian to any other man 
is due the credit of the adoption of the fifteenth 
amendment. He was bold and aggressive in his ad- 
vocacy of this important measure, designed as it was 
to secure to the colored man the right of suffrage. 
It was opposed by Senator Sumner and some other 
Republican members, but Mr. Morton led in the de- 
bate and carried the measure triumphantly through. 
He met all arguments, repelled all assaults, held the 
friends of the amendment together until the final 
vote was taken. Nor did his labors end with its 
adoption by Congress. It had to be ratified by the 
States. The Democratic members of the Indiana 
Legislature resigned to defeat its ratification. Sen- 
ator Morton reached Indianapolis the morning the 
13 



resignations were banded in. He sent word to the 
Republican members not to adjourn, but take a recess 
and meet him. He then showed them the resigna- 
tions did not break a quorum, and demonstrated that 
they had the power to ratify the amendment. They 
acted in accordance with his wishes, and the work 
was done, to the amazement of the Democrats. Still 
States were wanted. Senator Morton was equal to 
the emergency. A bill was introduced providing for 
the reconstruction of Mississippi, Texas, and Vir- 
ginia. He seized the opportunity and ofiered an 
amendment providing that before these States should 
be admitted to representation in Congress they should 
ratifiy the proposed fifteenth amendment. The 
amendment was referred to the Committee on Judi- 
ciary. An adverse report was made by Senator 
Trumbull, chairman of the committee. Senator 
Morton still adhered to his amendment, and, after 
a debate lasting three days, was successful. This 
was one of the most remarkable debates of the 
Senate. Still another State was wanted, and again 
Senator Morton led in the work of securing it. He 
introduced a bill authorizing the military commander 
of Georgia to call the Legislature of that State to- 
gether, including the colored members who had been 
expelled the year before, and empowering the Legis- 
lature to reconstruct that State, by electing two 
United States senators, after ratifying the fifteenth 
amendment. Again the Judiciary Committee an- 
tagonized him, but again he triumphed, and the 
fifteenth amendment became a part of the Consti- 
tution, and stands to-day a monument of his love of 
justice and his powers as a leader, more enduring 
than brass or marble. 

Space will not permit the dwelling on his labors in 
the great kuklux debates and other similar measures, 
but in all he took a leading part, and upon all he left 
the impress of his lofty and unyielding patriotism. 

As chairman of the Committee on Elections and 
Privileges he rendered signal service. All questions 
that came before him were treated with the utmost 
fairness, and stern justice ruled in the decisions of his 
committee. One notable instance of this- kind was 
his action in regard to the election of Caldwell as 
senator from Kansas. It was evident that his election 



194 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



had been procured by corrupt means. Senator Mor- 
ton held that he should be expelled from the Senate 
as unworthy a seat in that body. The friends of 
Caldwell plead to have the election simply declared 
void. Mr. Morton would not listen. His sense of 
justice had been outraged and he felt that American 
politics needed purifying, and insisted on expulsion, 
and to save himself from that the Kansas senator 
resigned. With fraud, force, or corruption he had 
no patience, and he would neither listen to the plead- 
ings of friends of the accused, nor pay heed to their 
threats. He believed in the right and had the cour- 
age to at all times and under all circumstances to 
maintain his beliefs. 

In 1873 he delivered a speech in the Senate, which 
in the light of later events looks almost like prophecy. 
The question under discussion was a resolution in- 
structing the Committee on Privileges and Elections 
to report upon the best and most practicable mode of 
electing a President and Vice-President, and provid- 
ing a tribunal to adjust and decide all contested 
elections connected therewith. Senator Morton took 
strong grounds in favor of doing away with the 
Electoral College and electing a President by the 
direct vote of the people. In the course of that 
speech, in regard to the dangers of the present 
system, he said, — ■ 

" There is imminent danger of revolution to the nation when- 
ever the result of a Presidential election is to be determined by 
the vote of a State in which the choice of electors has been 
irregular, or is alleged to have been carried by fraud or vio- 
lence, and where there is no method of having these questions 
examined and settled in advance; where the choice of Presi- 
dent depends upim the election in a .State which has been 
publicly characterized by fraud or violence, and in which one 
party is alleged to have triumphed and secured the certificates 
of election by chicanery or the fraudulent interposition of courts. 
If the system of electoral colleges is to be continued, some 
means should be devised by which the election of these electors 
in the States may be contested, so that if it has been controlled 
by fraud or violence, or if there be two sets of electors, each 
claiming the right to cast the vote of a State, there may be 1 
some machinery or tribunal provided by which fraudulent re- 
turns could be set aside or corrected, and the contending claims 
of different sets of electors be settled in advance of the time 
when the vote is to be finally counted, and by which the Presi- 
dent of the Senate may no longer be left to exercise the 
dangerous powers that seem to be placed in his hands by the 



Constitution, nor the two houses of Congress by the twenty- 
second joint rule." 

Could he have been given the power to look into 
the future only three years he could not have been 
able to better portray the dangers that were before us 
as a nation. This was one of his great powers, — to 
discern the .signs of the times, and see the pitfalls 
and the rocks that lay hidden from view. It was 
this power which stamped him before all other Amer- 
icans, a wise statesman. 

It was Morton that gave to us the civil rights bill, 
which were intended to make good the promises of 
the nation to the colored men, — that they should 
have equal and exact justice with all races. That 
they have since failed was no fault of his. 

In the Senate he left the stamp of his individuality 
upon all legislation. He was the moving spirit, the 
leader, the one upon whom all relied. There was no 
question of public moment too small for his attention ; 
but his mind grasped all, his wisdom foresaw all, and 
as fitr as pos.sible he attempted to warn and to guide 
the country that it might avoid the danger he saw 
before it. He spoke often in the Senate, but always 
with effect, and was listened to with the utmost at- 
tention, for it soon became recognized that when he 
summed up the arguments there was little or nothing 
left to be said. When defeated, as he sometimes was, 
he at once accepted the situation, but never despaired. 
His fertility of resource was wonderful, his industry 
was prodigious. The last stroke, which ended eventu- 
ally his life, came while in the discharge of his sena- 
torial duties, and though not in his place at the cap- 
itol, yet, like John Quincy Adams, he died in the 
harness. In 1877 the Senate ordered an investigation 
into the case of Senator Grover, of Oregon, who was 
charged with having secured his election to the Senate 
through corrupt means. This duty devolved upon 
the Committee on Privileges and Elections, of which 
Senator Morton was chairman. It was neces-^ary to 
go across the continent to Oregon. Senator Morton, 
though physically feeble and worn out by his incessant 
labors, did not hesitate to undertake the long and tire- 
some journey, in company with Senators Saulsbury, 
of Delaware, and McMillan, of Minnesota. 

During the entire trip to San Francisco he was 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



195 



much prostrated, but the sea-voyage to Portland, 
Oregon, seemed to do him good. The investigation 
lasted eighteen days, during which he labored inces- 
santly, and the sessions of the committee were some- 
times prolonged late into the night. This labor nearly 
broke down the other members of the committee, but 
it seemed the iron will of Senator Morton rose above 
every trial, for, in addition to his work on the com- 
mittee, he prepared an elaborate political speech to be 
used in the approaching Ohio campaign. At the con- 
clusion of the investigation he addres.sed the people 
of Salem in a speech of considerable length, which 
was pronounced the ablest speech ever beard in the 
State. 

He arrived in San Francisco on his return home 
early in August, and on the 6th received his second 
stroke of paralysis. By morning his entire left side 
was paralyzed. We take the following account of 
his journey home and the closing scenes from a 
sketch written by Hon. C. M. Walker: 

" NotwithstandiDg his alarming condition he insisted upon 
starting liome the next day, and accordingly a special car was 
furnished, in which a cot was provided and the best arrange- 
ments possible made for his comfort. Then, on the 7th of 
August, accompanied, as usual, by his wife and son, he started 
from San Francisco for his Indiana home. During this long 
journey, though he was very much depressed and even feared 
he would not reach home to die, he uttered not a word of com- 
plaint, but bore his affliction in heroic silence. At Cheyenne, 
W. T., he was met by his brother-in-law, Col. W. R. Holloway, 
who thenceforward was a constant attendant at his bedside, 
and at Peoria, 111., Dr. W. C. Thompson, the senator's long- 
time physician, joined the sad party. His house in Indian- 
apolis not being prepared for his reception, he was taken to 
Richmond, Wayne Co., and to the residence of his mother- 
in law, Mrs. Burbank, in that city. Here he was at once made 
as comfortable as his condition would permit, and had every 
attention that medical skill or loving affection could devise. 
The news of his attack had already spread abroad, and, al- 
though as yet his friends did not think it would prove fatal, 
the greatej^t concern was man! Tested throughout the country. 
Letters and telegrams poured in from all parts, and this con- 
tinued during his entire illness. Many distinguished men 
visited him, and a still larger number sent messages of love 
and sympathy. On the 1 3th of September the President of 
the United States visited Richmond for the express purpose 
of calling on the sick senator. The meeting between them 
was simple but affecting. The great war Governor and dis- 
tinguished senator lay stretched upon his bed broken, ema- 
ciated, and almost helpless. His once massive features were 



pinched with pain, and the eyes that had flashed fire in so 
many contests were dimmed by sickness and by the medi- 
cines taken to alleviate his sufl"crings. Approaching the bed, 
the President pressed the senator's extended hand warmly, 
and then, bending over, kissed him on the forehead. Tho 
interview wns necessarily brief, and after a few words of 
earnest sympathy from the President, In which ho said he 
spoke for the country as well as for himself, he retired from 
the room evidently much afiected. In this interview Senator 
Morton assured the President that he would bo in his seat in 
the Senate at the opening of the regular session of Congress 
in December. Such was doubtless his expectation at the 
time, but it was not to be realized. 

"On the evening of the 15th of October he was placed in a 
special car and removed to his home in Indianapolis. This 
short trip seemed to do him some good, and the hope of his 
recovery, at least sufficiently to take his seat in the Senate, was 
strengthened. During the following weeks Col. Holloway and 
other friends were unremitting in their attentions, and nothing 
was left undone either to prolong his life or mitigate his sufl'er- 
Ings. All this time he took a lively interest in current afl"airs, 
and ei'pecially in what was passing in the political world. He 
wanted the papers read to him during nearly every waking 
moment, and even at night, waking from a short sleep, his 
first exclamation was ' Read.* If the reader stopped a moment 
to rest or for any other purpose, he would say, ' Read on ! Don't 
stop till I tell you.' So absorbing was his interest in public 
afl'airs, and his desire to keep up with current events. Mean- 
while it had become apparent that his vital forces were giving 
way, and that he could not last much longer. For many days, 
even weeks, he took no nourishment except milk, or occa- 
sionally a little bL*ef-tea, and even these were not digested. 
The paralysis seemed to have reached bis stomach, and all 
natural action was destroyed. Still his mind continued active 
and clear, and when friends visited bis bedside he would wel- 
come them with a pleasant smile and grasp of the hand. As 
long as there was the slightest ground for hope those nearest to 
him clung to the belief that he would recover, but from Tuesday, 
October 30th, it became evident to all that his case was hopeless. 
His symptoms on that day were such as to make it plain that 
his end was drawing near. During the 31st his death was 
hourly expected, and several times the rumor went abroad that 
he was dead. A great many telegrams were received from all 
parts of the country, inquiring if thrse rumors were true, and 
asking for information as to his condition. Thursday, Novem- 
ber 1, 1877, dawned gloomily. The dull, gray light that first 
found admittance to the sick-room fell upon a dying man, 
though the end was yet some hours distant. During the day 
he lay very quietly, only making known his wants in broken 
accents. A number of friends were in and out of the room 
during the day, and his wife and family remained ntar the 
bedside. In the afternoon he sank rapidly. At 4.45 o'clock 
he had a paroxysm of pain, and passing his hand over his 
stomach, said feebly, ' I am dying.' A little later his youngest 



196 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



son, taking his hand, said, 'Father, do you know me?' He 
nodded an assent, and gave signs of satisfaction when his son 
and other members of the family kissed him. A few minutes 
after five o'clock, while Dr. Thompson was holding his hand, he 
said, ' I am dying ; I am worn out.' These were the last 
audible words he uttered. Then he ceased to move, and at 
twenty-eight minutes past five o'clock the vital spark went 
out, and his great life was at an end. 

" The news of Senator Morton's death caused a profound 
sensation throughout the country. Although the event had 
been anticipated for several days, it came as a shock at last, 
and created a sorrow so deep and wide-spread that it could only 
be compared to that caused by the tragic death of Abraham 
Lincoln. Fhigs were displayed at half-mast, and bells were 
tolled throughout the land. Men gathered on the street cor- 
ners, and discussed the event as a national calamity. The 
President of the United States issued a special order directing 
the flags on all the public buildings to be placed at half-mast, 
and the government departments to bo closed on the day of the 
funeral. He also sent a telegram to W. R. Hoiloway, expres- 
sive of his personal bereavement, and his sympathy for the 
surviving family of the departed statesman. The Vice-Presi- 
dent of the United States sent a similar dispatch. The cabinet 
met, and gave expression to their deep sense of the nation's 
loss. The Senate and the House of Representatives each ap- 
pointed committees to attend the funeral, and both adjourned 
as a further mark of respect to his memory. The Governor of 
Indiana and the mayor of Indianapolis issued proclamations 
closing public offices, and calling upon citizens to suspend busi- 
ness during the funeral services. The bells of Indianapolis 
were tolled and the City Council met, and, after passing me- 
morial resolutions, resolved to attend the funeral in a body. 
The City Council of Cincinnati met, and appointed a committee 
to attend the funeral. Citizens' meetings were held in all the 
large towns of the State, and appropriate action taken in regard 
to the sad event. The State University and the public schools 
of Indianapolis were ordered to be closed on the day of the 
funeral. The Senate Committee on Privileges and Elections, 
of which Senator Morton was chairman, met, and having passed 
a resolution of s3-mpathy and condolence, adjourned in honor 
of his memory. The members of the bar of Indianapolis and 
other cities met and took appropriate action. In many of 
the country towns throughout the State the court-houses were 
draped in mourning and business was suspended. The press 
teemed with elaborate articles upon his character and public 
services, and agreed with remarkable unanimity that the coun- 
try had lost one of its greatest men. Military companies and 
social organizations of various kinds met and determined to 
attend the funeral. Thus in all directions, and by every means 
known to modern society, men gave expression to their pro- 
found sorrow, and to the respect and afl"ection which they bore 
for the deceased. 

"There being a general desire on the part of the public to 
view the remains of the departed statesman, they were 



in the main hall of the court-house at Indianapolis, where they 
lay in state during Sunday and part of Monday. During this 
time they were viewed by many thousands of persons who came 
from afar and near to take a last look at one who had filled so 
large a place in the history of the country. Special trains 
were run on several of the railroads, bringing a great number 
of persons to the city, and the solemn procession which passed 
through the court-house during those days had seemingly no 
end. 

''The funeral, which took place Monday, November 5th, was 
a grand and imposing pageant, — solemn, impressive, and mem- 
orable. A vast concourse of people was assembled from all 
parts of the country. Every branch of the federal government 
was represented. The President, being unable to attend, sent 
his son to represent him. Of the cabinet officers. Secretary 
Thompson, of the navy, and Attorney-General Devens were 
present. On the part of the Senate of the United States there 
were Senators McDonald, of Indiana, Davis, of Illinois, Bay- 
ard, of Delaware, Cameron, of Pennsylvania, Burnside, of 
Rhode Island, and Booth, of California. On the part of the 
House of Representatives there were Representatives Hanna 
and Cobb, of Indiana, Banks, of Massachusetts, Townsend, of 
New York, Wilson, of West Virginia, Burchai-d, of Illinois, and 
Davidson, of Florida. The judiciary department was repre- 
sented by federal judges from several neighboring States, and 
the army bj' a number of officers. Besides these, there were 
a great number of distinguished citizens from all parts of Indi- 
ana, Governors, ex-Governors, and representative men from 
other States, numerous military companies and delegates from 
civil societies, and thousands of his neighbors who knew and 
loved him." 

It would not be proper or just to close this short 
sketch without referring, at least in a brief way, to 
the political services of Senator Morton other than 
those directly connected with his labors in the Sen- 
ate and as Governor of Indiana, and to touch upon 
the general characteristics of the man. 

Great as was his work in both of the high offices 
to which the people elevated him, his labors in the 
general field of politics were no less prodigious. 
From 1856, when he first entered politics, until 
death claimed him, his voice and pen were never 
idle. In every political contest he was foremost in 
the fight, and the downtrodden and oppressed were 
always his care. Not only did he engage in the po- 
litical battles in his own State, but in almost every 
State of the North he sent forth the bugle-call which 
rallied the forces of republicanism. Few men made 
more stump speeches than he, and none ever carried 
such weight. In Indiana, during each campaign, he 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



197 



spoke incessantly, and he always knew how to touch 
the popular chord of patriotism. He not only spoke, 
but hundreds of editorials from his pen found their 
way into the columns of the leading; papers. His 
political speeches, if collected and published, would 
make a political history of the country in its great 
struggle unequaled. He was always ready to answer 
the calls of his party. His devotion to bis party was 
witnessed by his declining the English mission. 
President Grant was desirous of concluding a treaty 
with Great Britain on the subject of the depredations 
of the rebel cruisers, and urged Senator Morton to 
undertake the mission. He was inclined to accept it, 
but the Legislature of Indiana was controlled by the 
Democrats, and he declined. President Grant wrote 
to him as follows : 

*' ExEcoTivE Mansion, 
"Washington, D. C, October 21st. 
" Hon. 0. P. Morton, U. S. S. 

" Dear Sir,— Yoar letter of the 19th inst., declining the Eng- 
lish mission, with reasons therefor, is received. I fully concur 
with you in all the reasons which you give for the course you 
find it your duty to pursue in the matter, but regret that the 
country is not to have your valuable services at the English 
Court at this important juncture. Your course, however, I 
deem wise, and it will be highly appreciated by your constitu- 
ents in Indiana and throughout the country. 

" With assurances of my highest regard, I remain, very 
truly, your obedient servant, 

"TJ. S. Grant." 

It is difficult to justly sum up the character of such 
a man. He was a born leader, and no sooner did he 
enter political life than he took the leadership of his 
party and maintained it until his death. He was a 
man of strong will, indomitable energy, and untiring 
industry, and was possessed of moral and physical 
courage which approached the sublime. As a party 
leader and organizer he has had no equal. The uni- 
versal testimony of those who were with him in the 
Senate is to the effect that America has never pro- 
duced a party leader who could even lay claim to 
rival him. He was strong because he was always in 
earnest ; because he never forgot a friend ; because 
he was ever ready to meet a foe. He always mastered 
his subject, and never undertook to discuss it until he 
had thoroughly studied every phase of it. It was 
this that gave him such great power with an audience. 



His mind was of an analytical order, and when he 
spoke his sentences were terse, logical, and oftentimes 
eloquent. There was little or no fancy about him, 
and he rather despised those fancy flights of oratory 
by which some men endeavor to capture their audi- 
ences. He dealt with facts, and he dealt with them 
as living things. While he was often severe and even 
terrible in his denunciation or arraignment of his op- 
ponents, he never was personal, but always calm, dig- 
nified, urbane. To illustrate this we cannot do better 
than quote a paragraph from a letter written by 
Senator Jones, of Florida, to the Morton Monument 
Association. He says, — 

" He was one of the few public men of eminence who was 
strong enough in all the resources of legitimate argument so aa 
never to feel the necessity or entertain the inclination of resort- 
ing to personal vituperation in the discussions of the Senate. 
He attacked communities, States, and parties at times with 
great vigor, but, in the language of Mr. Grattan, * ho knew how 
to be severe without being unparliamentary.' " 

His patriotism was something sublime. He loved 
the country, the whole country, with a devotion that 
knew no shrinking, and to it he gave heart, soul, 
everything. He clung to the idea that we are a 
nation with a tenacity that forced conviction upon 
every mind he addressed. It was the burden of 
nearly all his speeches. He labored to impress this 
ruling idea upon the people, for to him it was the 
key of our whole political system. To his mind it 
embraced the true conception of our government, 
and the only one upon which the Union could safely 
rest. To him the idea that we were but a mere con- 
federation of States was abhorrent. In it he saw 
future disaster and ruin. In May, 1860, he wrote, — 

" It cannot be too strongly impressed upon the public mind 
that we are one people, a nation, and not a mere coalition of 
sovereign and independent States." 

In 1865 he said,— 

"The war has established upon imperishable foundations 
the great fundamental truth of the unity and indivisibility of 
the nation. We are many States, but one people; having an 
undivided sovereignty, one flag, one common destiny." 

In 1871, at Providence, R. I., he said, — 

" The idea that we are a nation, that we are one people, 
undivided and indivisible, should be a plank in the platform 



198 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



of every party. It should be presented on the banner of every 
party. It should be taught in every school, academy, and 
college. It should be the political north star by which every 
political manager should steer his bark. It should be the 
central idea of American politics, and every child should, so to 
speak, be vaccinated with the idea that he may be protected 
against this political distemper which has brought such 
calamity upon our country." 

In Ohio, in 1873, he said, — 

" What the sun is in the heavens, diffusing light and life 
and warmth, and by its subtle influence holding the planetii 
in their orbits, and preserving the harmony of the universe, 
such is the sentiment of nationality in a people ditfusing life 
and protection in every direction, holding the faces of Ameri- 
cans always toward their home, protecting the States in the 
exercise of their just powers, and preserving the harmony of 
all. We must have a nation. It is a necessity of our political 
existence. We should cherish the idea that while the States 
hare their rights, sacred and inviolable, which we should 
guard with untiring vigilance, never permitting an encroach- 
ment upon them, and remembering that such encroachment 
is as much a violation of the Constitution of the United States 
as to encroach upon the rights of the general government ; 
still bearing in mind that the States are but subordinate parts 
of one great nation, — that the nation is over all, even as God 
is over the universe." 

We might multiply such quotations, for they crop 
out everywhere in his speeches and writings. 

He hated treason with all the power he had, and 
he would stamp it out as a poison that if left alone 
would kill the body and soul of the nation. He was 
unsparing in his denunciation of the foul crime, and 
was often accused of hating the South. His feelings 
in this matter are best expressed in his own language. 
On Decoration Day, 1877, in the last speech he ever 
made in his own State, he said, — 

" We will let by-gones be by-gones. We cannot forget the 
past; we ought not forget it. God has planted memory in our 
minds and we cannot blot it out. But while we cannot forget, 
yet we can forgive, and we will forgive all who accept the great 
doctrines of equal liberty and of equal rights to all, and equal 
protection to all, and will be reconciled to them. And while 
we cannot forget the past, we will treat them as if the past had 
never occurred, and that is all that can be asked ; and that is 
true reconciliation. True reconciliation does not require us to 
forget these deadj does not require us to forget the living sol- 
dier and to cease to do him justice. We must remember that 
there is an eternal difference between right and wrong, and that 
we were on the right side and that they were on the wrong side; 
and all that we ask of them is that hereafter they shall be on the 
right side. We should forever remember that we were in the 



right. We want to transmit that as a sacred inheritance to our 
remotest posterity. We know that in that great struggle we 
were in the right. We were grandly in the right and they 
were terribly in the wrong. The whole civilized world has now 
said that we were in the right, and we know if there is such a 
thing as right and wrong, we were in the right and they were 
in the wrong. We want that grand distinction to pass down 
through all time ; but that is entirely consistent with true recon- 
ciliation. We say to those who were on the other side of that 
great contest that cost so dearly in blood and treasure, that cost 
us so much suffering and sacrifice, that while we shall forever 
cherish the lessons that were taught us by that struggle, and 
while we shall forever stand by the principles that we main- 
tained in that contest, all we ask of them is that they shall 
hereafter stand upon those principles, and let us go forward 
hand in hand and as Americans and as brethren through all the 
future pages of our country's history." 

He was possessed of moral courage that few public 
men obtain to, and a physical courage which almost 
amounted to an insensibility to personal danger. The 
first was exhibited often by the stand he took upon 
great public questions, regardless of what clamor 
there might be from political friends or foes. Mak- 
ing up his mind that a thing was right, it mattered 
not what all the world might say or do, he stood 
like a rock. He was ambitious, and yet for popu- 
larity's sake he would not desert a right. One of 
the greatest acts of his life was when, as it appeared 
to his friends, he closed the doors against all hopes 
of reaching the Presidency by the stand he took in 
favor of the Chinese immigrants. He was an open 
candidate for that high office. To speak for the 
Mongolian was, seemingly, to espouse a cause so un- 
popular as to be political death. He did not hesitate 
a moment. He believed he was right, and with all 
his power he took up the cause of the Chinese. The 
fear of being called inconsistent often keeps public 
men from changing their ideas of public policy. It 
was not so with Mr. Morton. He had the courage 
of his convictions. His physical courage might be 
illustrated by numerous incidents, but one must 
suffice, and we tell it as it was narrated by Governor 
Porter, who was a witness to it. In his earlier years 
as an attorney Mr. Morton appeared in a case of 
some magnitude at Indianapolis. One of the oppos- 
ing lawyers was of the flre-eating kind, and had a 
reputation as one who was ready to use his revolver. 
During the trial he was exceedingly ugly, and ap- 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



191) 



peared in court with his pistol ostentatiously dis- 
played, and had succeeded in cowing the other attor- 
neys. Finally, Mr. Morton administered to him a 
scathing rebuke. As he took his seat the subject of 
his rebuke arose and said to those near him that he 
intended to make Morton apologize then and there. 
All expected a tragedy. Few knew anything of Mr. 
Morton. He went to where Mr. Morton was sitting 
and said, in an insulting tone, " I have come to 
demand an apology from you." Quick as a flash 
Mr. Morton turned upon him, and looking him 
steadily in the eyes, said, in a tone sharp and clear, 
" I have no apology to make to you," and then de- 
liberately repeated the offensive remark. He had 
met a man that knew no fear, and was cowed com- 
pletely. 

Mr. Morton was simple in his tastes ; honest in 
the strictest sense of the word. No taint of corrup- 
tion ever lingered near him. He loved his home, 
his family, his friends, and they clung to him with a 
devotion equal to his love. His nature was kind and 
sympathetic. The cry of the suffering or sorrowing j 
always found an echo in his heart. The cares of j 
state often absorbed him to such a degree that he : 
forgot himself, his own physical weakness, his own 
wants, but never so that he forgot his home or family, i 
and he always turned to them for rest. When in the i 
bosom of his family he was as simple as a child. | 

His children were especially dear to him, and amid 
all the cares of state he thought of them and en- 
deavored to guide their young minds into the paths 
of honor. Few men in the height of power would 
write to their children so simple, so loving, and yet so 
grand a letter as the following : 

*' Washingto.v, January 1, 1871. 
" Mij Dear Ck!Uh-en,—Th\s is the Brst day of the New Year, 
and here it is briglit and cheerful and warm, and everybody 
seems happy. Tour mother is as well as usual, and sends her 
love to you, and her heartfelt wishes for your health and for 
your future happiness and success in life. You can never know 
the depth of a mother's love, — how constantly you are in her 
thoughts, her anxiety about you from day to day, and what 
sacrifices she would make for you. We have been talking about 
you, and wondering what you are doing, and hoping you will 
make great progress in your studies during the year which has 
just come in. One year is a great portion of one's lifetime. 
Much may be done in one year in getting an education and 



fitting yourself for the duties of lifo. Lost time can never be 
recalled, and cannot be made up. Each year should show a 
great deal learned, and great improvement in the manners and 
characters of my dear children. 

"My great anxiety and desire are about my little boys. I 
am constantly wondering what they will be when they grow up 
to be men. Will they be learned, talented, good, prosperous, 
and an honor to their parents and country ? Such is my daily 
prayer. We hope you think of us, and love us, and think of 
your dear absent brother, who is so far away on a lonely island 
in the Northern Sea. You must constantly remember him in 
your prayers, that he may be preserved in health, and be pros- 
perous and be safely returned to us during the year. 

" Your mother will return to you in a few days, and in the 
mean time you must not neglect your books, and show to her 
that you can be dutiful and studious in her absence. 

" And now I wish you a happy New Year, and may God bless 
you and preserve you, is the prayer of your loving father, 

'' 0. P. Morton." 

There was no love of pomp in his nature, and he 
was always accessible to the people, the poor equally 
with the rich. He gave to the country seventeen 
years of his life, and wore himself out and died a 
poor man, as he had lived. His last audible words 
expressed it all, " I am worn out." Yes, he had worn 
himself out. 

The people of Indiana have raised in the Circle 
Park of Indianapolis a bronze statue of the great war 
Governor and senator, but his greatest monument 
lives in the pages of the Constitution and laws of his 
country, and in the doctrines of patriotism he incul- 
cated and enforced. 

Hon. Thomas A. Hendricks was born Sept. 7, 
1819, on a farm near Zanesville, Muskingum Co., 
Ohio, his father, John Hendricks, having been a 
native of Western Pennsylvania. The family was 
one of the first to settle in Ligonier Valley, West- 
moreland Co., and took an active part in the admin- 
istration of public affairs, serving with honor in the 
Legislature and other places of trust. The mother, 
Jane Thomson Hendricks, was of Scotch descent. 
Her grandfather, John Thomson, emigrated to Penn- 
sylvania before the Revolution, and was conspicuous 
among the pioneers of that date for his intelligence, 
integrity, enterprise, love of country, and far-reaching 
good-will to men. As soon as assured of the wisdom 
of emigration, he addressed a letter to the Scotch 
people setting forth the advantages of American soil, 



200 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



climate, and institutions so forcibly that the section 
of the State where he lived was principally settled by 
his countrymen. Several of his sons were soldiers 
in the Revolutionary war, and many of bis descend- 
ants have attained distinction in the different walks 
of life. Beside those bearing his name, may be men- 
tioned the Agnews, of New York, the Blacks and 
Watsons, of Pittsburgh, the Wylies, of Philadelphia, 
and the Hendrickses, of Indiana. The wife of John 
Hendricks and her niece are the only members of the 
Thomson family who emigrated West. In nearly 
every branch of the family the pioneer Calvinistic 
faith of the Thomsons is still maintained. When 
Thomas A. Hendricks was six months old his parents 
removed from Ohio to Madison, Ind. This was the 
home of William Hendricks, that uncle of Thomas A. 
who in indirect line preceded him in the enjoyment 
of his signal tokens of public confidence and respect. 
He was then a member of Congress, three years sub- 
sequently he was elected Governor, and at the end of 
the term was chosen to the United States Senate. 
All of these positions he filled acceptably. He was 
indeed the first representative in Congress who 
brought the State into favorable repute. John, the 
father of Thomas A., had some share of government 
patronage. He held the appointment of deputy sur- 
veyor of public land under Gen. Jackson, and in that 
capacity became generally known and respected. As 
early as 1822 he removed with his family to the 
interior of the State, and held the first title to the 
fine land upon a portion of which Shelbyville, the 
county-seat of Shelby County, is located. In the 
heart of the dense forest, upon a gentle eminence i 
overlooking the beautiful valley, he built the sightly i 
and commodious brick homestead which yet stands in [ 
good preservation in open view of the thriving city [ 
and richly cultivated country around. It soon be- i 
came known as a centre of learning and social de- 
light, and was the favorite resort of men of distinc- I 

1 
tion and worth. It was in particular the seat of i 

hospitality to the orthodox ministry, Mr. Hendricks 
being the principal founder and supporter of the 
Presbyterian Church in the community. The pre- 
siding genius of that home was the gentle wife and 
mother, who tempered the atmosphere of learning i 



and zeal with the sweet influences of charity and 
love. Essentially clever and persistent, she was pos- 
sessed of a rare quality of patience, which stood her 
in better stead than a- turbulent, aggressive spirit. A 
close analysis of the character of Thomas A. Hen- 
dricks is not necessary to show that this trait was 
pre-eminently his birthright. It is thus apparent 
that the childhood and youth of Mr. Hendricks were 
passed under the happiest auspices. Together with 
his brothers and sisters he attended the village school 
and derived the full benefit of very respectable and 
thorough instruction. His senior brother, Abram, 
pursued college studies at the University of Ohio, and 
at South Hanover, Ind., and subsequently became 
a minister of the Presbyterian Church. In turn 
Thomas A. attended college at South Hanover, and 
then began the study of law at home under the 
advice and instruction of Judge Major. In so doing 
he followed the bent of his early and most cherished 
inclinations. In boyhood he developed a fondness 
for legal discussions, and when but twelve years of 
age attended the hearing of important cases in the 
courts. The final period of law study he prosecuted 
under the tuition of his uncle, Judge Thomson, of 
Chambersburg, Pa., and was admitted to the bar at 
Shelbyville. His success was not rapid, but he grew 
in favor by careful attention to business, and acquired 
a leading practice. His professional career has since 
been so interwoven with official life that it is next to 
impossible to refer to one without speaking of the 
other. In 1848 he was elected to the Legislature, 
and declined a renomination. In 1850 he was chosen 
without opposition senatorial delegate to the conven- 
tion empowered to amend the State Constitution, and 
took an important part in the deliberative proceed- 
ings. In 1851 he was elected to Congress from the 
Indianapolis district, and re-elected in 1852, but 
defeated in 1854. He was in 1855 appointed com- 
missioner of the general land office by President 
Pierce. This mark of executive favor was expected, 
and the wisdom of the selection proved by the able 
and satisfactory manner in which the duties were 
discharged at a time when the sales, entries, and 
grants were larger than ever before in the history of 
the country. The term of four years in the land office 




y\^. ^ AAt-w-L o^^v- cA-s^ 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



201 



was followed by an unsuccessful race for Governor in 
1860. In 1862 he was chosen United States senator 
by the unanimous vote of his party, and during the 
period of his term in the Senate, the Democrats 
being in a small minority, he was compelled to take a 
prominent part in the proceedings of that body. He 
favored the earnest prosecution of the war, and 
voted for supplies to sustain the army. He was op- 
posed to conscription, and favored the enlistment of 
volunteers and payment of soldiers' bounties. At the 
close of the war he held that the States engaged in 
rebellion had at no time been out of the Union, and 
were therefore entitled to full representation in Con- 
gress. He maintained that the people of those States 
should have entire control of their respective State 
governments. These views placed him in opposition 
to the reconstruction policy which was adopted by 
the majority in Congress. He also opposed the con- 
stitutional amendments because the Southern States 
were not represented, and because, in his opinion, 
such amendments should not be made before sectional 
passions had time to subside. He held that amend- 
ments to the Constitution should be considered only 
when the public is in a cool, deliberative frame of 
mind. His term in the Senate expired March 4, 
1869, when he devoted himself exclusively to the 
profession of law, having in 1860 removed to Indian- 
apolis with that end in view. In 1862 he formed a 
partnership with Mr. Oscar B. Hord, which was 
extended in 1866 to a cousin. Col. A. W. Hendricks, 
under the firm-name of Hendricks, Hord & Hen- 
dricks. The business of the firm was large, impor- 
tant, and lucrative. In 1872, Thomas A. Hendricks 
was forced to relinquish the practice of his profession 
by an election to the office of chief executive of the 
State. He accepted the nomination against his earn- 
est protest, but made a vigorous contest, supporting 
the Greeley ticket. He was inaugurated Governor 
Jan. 13, 1873, and served the State in that office for 
four years. He gave his undivided attention to the 
interests of the State, his administration of public 
affairs being above criticism. In the political contest 
of 1876 he was the Democratic candidate for the 
Vice-Presidency, and carried his own State by upward 
of five thousand majority. After the decision of the 



Electoral Commission Governor Hendricks, accom- 
panied by his wife, made a brief sojourn in Europe, 
spending the summer in a tour nf Great Britain, 
Germany, and Prance. He resumed on his return 
the practice of law with his former partners, with 
the addition of ex-Governor Conrad Baker, who 
took Governor Hendricks' place in the firm when 
succeeded by him in the gubernatorial office, the 
firm-name being Baker, Hord & Hendricks. The 
personal mention of Thom'as A. Hendricks may be 
given briefly : he was reared in the Presbyterian 
faith, but has for some years been a member of the 
Episcopal Cburch, and is senior warden of St. Paul's 
Cathedral, Indianapolis. He was married near Cin- 
cinnati, Ohio, Sept. 25, 1845, to Miss Eliza C. Mor- 
gan, who is a granddaughter of Dr. Stephen Wood, 
a prominent citizen and early settler of Hamilton 
County, Ohio. Governor and Mrs. Hendricks have 
had but one child, a son born in 1848, who lived to 
be three years of age. The extent and character of 
Governor Hendricks' attainments can be well gauged 
by his public and professional record. The same 
may be said of his political views, although he has 
stronger convictions than are credited to him. Under 
a somewhat cautious, reserved manner he conceals 
great depth of sentiment and indomitable fiiith in the 
triumph of right over wrong, truth over envy, malice, 
and detraction. In social as in public relations he is 
steadfast in his friendships and generous to his foes. 
He has a happy equanimity of temper which recon- 
ciles him to the inevitable and nerves him to make 
the best of life. A certain amount of benignity is 
imparted to his voice, which in carrying a point 
before a jury is almost irresistible. In appearance 
Governor Hendricks is distinguished, possessing a 
fine figure and a dignified presence. As his methods 
of thought and forms of expression are peculiar to 
himself, so in the execution of his plans he departs 
so much from the beaten track that the end in view 
is often lost sight of by others. It is none the less 
plain to him, and it is a question if he ever sought 
an object, the accomplishment of which depended 
upon his own exertions, that he did not gain. 

Joseph Ewing McDonald was born in Butler 
County, Ohio, on the 29th of August, 1819. His 



202 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



father, John McDonald, was of Scotch extraction, a 
native of Pennsylvania, and by occupation a farmer. 
He was a man of sterling worth, determined and self- 
sacrificing. He died when Joseph E. was still in his 
infancy, thus depriving him of support and counsel, 
and casting upon him many burdens and responsi- 
bilities. His mother, Eleanor Piatt, was a Pennsyl- 
vanian, her ancestors being French Huguenots, who 
located first in New Jersey and afterwards perma- 
nently in Ohio. She was a woman of superior intel- 
lect, her standards all high, her influences always 
elevating. Her highest ambition — a mother's — was 
to educate her children and make them useful mem- 
bers of society. She and her husband were both 
earnest members of the Presbyterian Church. She 
later married John Kerr, of Butler County, Ohio, a 
native of Ireland, and a frugal, industrious farmer. 
He with hi.s family moved in the fall of 1826 to 
Montgomery County, Ind., Joseph E. then being 
seven years of age. While still a mere boy he de- 
termined to make the profession of law his life-work. 
At twelve years of age he was apprenticed to the 
saddler's trade at Lafayette. For nearly six years he 
served as an apprentice, being released from the last 
three months for fidelity to the interest of his em- 
ployers. These three months he spent in studying. 
During his apprenticeship he had access to the library 
of a government official, and what leisure he com- 
manded was devoted to the English branches. He 
entered Wabash College, Crawfordsville, Ind., in 
1838, supporting himself by plying his trade. Two 
years later he was a student at Asbury University, 
Greencastle. Mr. McDonald did not graduate. A 
diploma and degree were given him, however, while 
he was a member of the United States Senate. His 
first preceptor in law was Zebulun Baird, one of the 
first lawyers of the State, and a resident of Lafayette. 
In 1853 he was admitted to practice upon an exami- 
nation before the Supreme Court of the State. Four 
years later he began practicing in Crawfordsville, and 
in 1859 removed to Indianapolis. His first law part- 
ner at Indianapolis was ex-judge of the Supreme 
Court of Indiana, Addison L. Roache. His present 
partners are John M. Butler and A. L. Mason. 
Mr. McDonald, with the late Judge Black, was 



counsel for the defendants in the celebrated case of 
Bowles, Horsey, and Milligan, tried for treason and 
conspiracy by a military commission at Indianapolis, 
and sentenced to be hung. The case was taken to 
the Supreme Court of the United States, where a 
number of important constitutional questions arose as 
to the relations of the general government to the 
States, the war power of the government, and the 
rights of the citizen. The defendants were released 
by the Supreme Court. In the case of Beebe vs. the 
State, in which the Supreme Court decided that the 
enactment known as the Maine liquor law was un- 
constitutional, Mr. McDonald was of the counsel for 
the defendants. He was also one of the attorneys 
for the parties who assailed the constitutionality of 
the Baxter liquor law. He has taken an active part 
in many other important cases before the Supreme 
Court of the State and the Federal Court. 

The senator is most successful in his pleading be- 
fore a jury, and is a shrewd examiner. He is not an 
eloquent talker, but has the ability to influence those 
who listen to him by the fairness of his arguments. 

Before he had received his license to practice law, 
Mr. McDonald was nominated for the ofiice of prose- 
cuting attorney, and elected the following fall over 
Robert Jones, Whig, and a prominent member of the 
Lafayette bar. This was the first election of that 
class of officers by the people, they having been for- 
merly chosen by the Legislature. As prosecuting at- 
torney he served four years. He was elected to the 
Thirty-first Congress from the district in which Craw- 
fordsville was then situated, having removed to that 
place during his official term as prosecutor at Lafay- 
ette. 

Returning to the State after his congressional term, 
he was elected attorney-general of Indiana five years 
later. He was the first choice of the people for this 
office, and held it two terms. With Oliver P. Mor- 
ton as an opponent, he made the race for Governor of 
Indiana in 186-t. He ran ahead of his ticket, but 
Mr. Morton was elected by nearly twenty thousand 
votes. Eleven years later Mr. McDonald took his 
seat in the United States Senate as a successor to 
Daniel D. Pratt. He was chairman of the Commit- 
tee on Public Lands and the second member of the 




-'V=iy23SaiiA5i>'>!-''y- 




\^f^O^C^c^ 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



203 



Judiciary Committee. He visited New Orleans to 
investigate the count of the vote of Louisiana in the 
contest of 1876, and made the principal argument 
for the objectors before the Electoral Commission. 
The senator was also a member of the Teller- Wallace 
committee to investigate the frauds in elections in 
Rhode Island and Massachusetts. At the expiration 
of his senatorial term he returned to Indianapolis, 
where he has since been engaged in the active prac- 
tice of his profession. He is and always has been a 
firm and consistent Democrat of the Jefferson ian 
school, as personified in the political life of Andrew 
Jackson. He believes the true idea of American 
democracy is to preserve unimpaired all the rights 
reserved to the States, respectively, and to the people, 
without infringing upon any of the powers delegated 
to the general government by the Constitution, and 
that constitutional government is of the first impor- 
tance and a necessity to the perpetuity of the Amer- 
ican Union. He believes in the virtue of the people, 
and in their ability and purpose to maintain their 
institutions inviolate against the assaults of designing 
men. As an orator, both at the bar and on the hust- 
ings, Mr. McDonald is cool, logical, and forcible ; as 
a citizen, he has the confidence and respect of all who 
know him, regardless of political creeds. He is re- 
garded by all parties as a statesman of acknowledged 
merit. His views are broad and comprehensive on 
all questions of public interest, — not a man of expe- 
dients, but stating his views clearly and boldly, leav- 
ing the result to the candid judgment of the people. 
The opinions of his most bitter opponents are never 
treated with disdain. His steadfiistness of purpose, 
his honest desire to accomplish what was best for the 
people have given him a home in their hearts and won 
for him high honors at their hands. Their confidence 
has never been betrayed or sacrificed for personal 
aggrandizement. Mr. McDonald is in religion an 
attendant and pew- holder, but not a member, of the 
Second Presbyterian Church of Indianapolis. He 
has been three times married. On the 25th of No- 
vember, 1844, he was united to Miss Nancy Ruth 
Buell, to whom were born children, — Ezekiel M., 
Malcolm A., Frank B., and Annie M. (Mrs. Cald- 
well). Mrs. McDonald died Sept. 7, 1872, and he 



was again married on the 16th of September, 1874, 
to Mrs. Araminta W. Vance, who died Feb. 2, 1875. 
On the 12th of January, 1881, he was married to 
his present wife, Mrs. Josephine F. Barnard, ni'e 
Farnsworth, of Indianapolis, daughter of Joseph 
Farnsworth, formerly of Madison, Ind. 

Governor David Wallace was bom in Mifflin 
County, Pa., April 24, 1799. His parents removed 
to Ohio when he was a boy, and from that State, 
through the influence of Gen. Harrison, he received 
a cadetship in West Point Academy, where, after 
graduation, he was for some time a tutor in mathe- 
matics. He removed to Brookville while still a 
young man, and began the practice of the law there. 
He represented the county in the Legislature some 
years, and in 1834 was elected Lieutenant-Governor 
on the ticket with Governor Noble's re-election. 
In 1837 he was elected Governor and removed to 
the capital, which was thenceforward his home. 
He married, as his second wife, Zerelda, eldest 
daughter of the eminent physician. Dr. Sanders, and 
in 1839 the Legislature purchased for the oflBcial 
residence of the Executive the house then recently 
built by Dr. Sanders on the northwest corner of 
Illinois and Market Streets. In 1841, at a special 
election to meet the demand of President Harrison 
for an extra session of Congress, he was elected over 
Judge Wick, and served till March 4, 1843. In 
Congress it was his fortune to be the last man on the 
roll of the committee to which had been referred the 
petition of Professor Morse for forty thousand dol- 
lars to make an electric telegraph line from Washing- 
ton to Baltimore. The vote on recommending such 
an appropriation was a tie till Governor Wallace gave 
the casting vote for it. He saved that just appro- 
priation, and it beat him in his contest for re-elec- 
tion. His opponent, the late William J. Brown, 
used the idleness and waste of spending money on 
such schemes with disastrous effect. After the es- 
tablishment of the Court of Common Pleas he served 
a term as its judge. He was also prosecutor in the 
Circuit Court for some years. Both in intellect and 
personal appearance and bearing Governor Wallace 
seemed formed by nature for an orator, and when 
deeply moved, as he was sometimes at the bar, espe- 



204 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



cially in prosecuting cruel crimes, he was the most 
eloquent man ever heard in Indianapolis. His na- 
ture was exceedingly social, genial, and generous, and 
he was a most delightful companion for young men, 
whose company he seemed to prefer. He died in 
September, 1859. His eldest son, William, is a dis- 
tinguished member of the bar, and even more distin- 
guished as an orator and leading member of the Odd- 
Fellows. His second, Lewis, is the well-known nov- 
elist and general, now minister to ConstaDtinople. 

Less known as a politician, but not less favorably 
known professionally than the distinguished lawyers 
whose lives have just been briefly sketched, is John 
M. Butler. 

John Maynard Butler. — The parents of Mr. 
Butler were Calvin Butler and Malvina French But- 
ler, the latter of whom was a direct descendant of 
Governor Bradford, of Massachusetts, both natives of 
Vermont. The former learned the trade of a shoe- 
maker, which wa.s followed until his thirtieth year, 
when, having a desire to acquire an education, he 
made his way through Middlebury College, and subse- 
quently entered the Theological Seminary at Andover, 
Mass. Having thus gained a thorough theological as 
well as classical training, he came West to preach, and 
settled in Evansville, Ind. Subsequently he removed 
to Northern Illinois, where his death occurred in 1854. 
There being a large family of children in the house- 
hold, the subject of this sketch, who was born at 
Evansville, Ind., Sept. 17, 1834, was compelled to 
rely mainly upon his own exertions, and consequently 
at the age of twelve years engaged as clerk and in 
other employments. Having inherited a love of learn- 
ing and a determination to acquire a thorough educa- 
tion, he succeeded in entering Wabash College, at 
Crawfordsville, in 1851, and through his own efforts, 
with partial help, graduated in 1856. The same day 
he was elected president of the Female Seminary at 
Crawfordsville, which position he held for three suc- 
cessive years, after which he became principal of the 
High-School. During this period he pursued the 
study of the law with the intention of adopting it as 
a profession. In the fall of 1861 he made an ex- 
tended tour through the Northwestern States, in pur- 
suit of a location for the practice of law. Returning, 



he settled in Crawfordsville in November, 1861 . From 
that day until the present he has been kept constantly 
busy, his first case being an important one that passed 
through the Circuit and Supreme Courts of Indiana, 
ending in the complete success of the young lawyer. 
This gave him an early prestige and greatly increased 
his practice in the town and surrounding, counties. 
In 1871 he came to Indianapolis and succeeded Judge 
A. L. Roache as partner with Hon. Josepli E. Mc- 
Donald, their relations being continued to the present 
time. Mr. George C. Butler was taken into the firm 
in 1875, and after his death Mr. A. L. Ma.son, the 
present firm being McDonald, Butler & Mason. 
Their practice has steadily increased, notwithstanding 
the protracted absence of Mr. McDonald when filling 
the office of United States senator at Washington. 
Mr. Butler's thorough mastery of the intricate prob- 
lems of the law, and ability in the conduct of important 
cases, have placed him in the foremost rank of suc- 
cessful lawyers in the State. Differing from his dis- 
tinguished partner politically, he has always affiliated 
ardently with the Republican cause, and has taken no 
inconsiderable part in forwarding the interests of that 
party. Aspiring to no office, and repeatedly declining 
nominations, he has been an active worker in political 
campaigns, speaking throughout this State and ex- 
tending his labors to other States. He is a popular 
political orator, his speeches having been extensively 
published and read. Mr. Butler is an active member 
of the Second Presbyterian Church of Indianapolis, 
in which he is a ruling elder and member of the 
board of trustees. As a jurist he stands in the first 
rank in a bar that embraces in its list many of the 
ablest lawyers in the country, the practice of the 
firm being with cases of the weightiest importance. 
Wisely avoiding the paths that lead to military and 
civic distinction, he has a far more enviable record 
as a successful lawyer, a useful and respected citizen, 
and a thorough Christian gentleman. Mr. Butler 
was married in April, 1857, to Miss Sue W. Jen- 
nison, of Crawfordsville, Ind. Their children are a 
son and a daughter. George Calvin Butler, a brother 
of Mr. Butler, was born May 3, 1851, in Marine, 111., 
and graduated at Wabash College in 1872. He 
adopted the law as a profession, became a partner in 





jm^ 




CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



205 



a film that was constantly dealing with difiieult suits, 
involving the subtleties of the law and vast property 
interests. His talents commanded the confidence of 
his superiors and placed in liis charge cases rarely 
intrusted to a young man. He invariably became 
master of his cases, and early won the high approba- 
tion of the judges of the highest courts at which he 
practiced. His brilliant career as a promising and 
successful lawyer and a sincere and earnest Christian 
was suddenly ended by death on the 10th of Novem- 
ber, 1882. 

From its central situation the capital has been the 
principal point of business for Eastern agencies ever 
since it was large enough to have any business to 
attend to. Claims of Eastern merchants have been 
largely sent here to collect in all parts of the State, 
and the business, though involving no great extent of 
law practice or erudition, has been very lucrative. 
The firm of Fletcher, Butler & Yandes did a very 
extensive collecting business, with a very large liti- 
gated business besides ; but probably the largest col- 
lecting business, combined with ordinary legal busi- 
ness, ever conducted in the city was that of William 
Henderson. 

William Henderson. — The ancestors of Mr. 
Henderson were of Scotch-Irish extraction, and 
resided in the north of Ireland. John Henderson, 
his father, was a native of Albemarle County, Va., 
where his parents settled before the Revolution. He 
was married to Miss Nancy Rucker and had children, 
— Thomas, Robert, Reuben, John, Polly, and Wil- 
liam. Mr. Henderson on reaching manhood re- 
moved to Alabama, and later to Mooresville, Morgan 
Co., where his death occurred. His son William 
was born Oct. 14, 1820, in Lawrence County, 
Ala., in the immediate vicinity of the town of Mol- 
tcm, and at the age of nine years removed with his 
parents to Indiana. His early educational advan- 
tages were limited, both from want of opportunities 
adjacent to his home and lack of means to prosecute 
his studies abroad. At the age of seventeen years 
he engaged in active labor, and later acquired the 
trade of a saddler in Eaton, Preble Co., Ohio. Dur- 
ing an apprenticeship of four years, diligent atten- 
dance upon the sessions of a night school enabled 



him to become proficient in the various English 
branches, and fitted him for the calling of a teacher. 
He, during this interval, began the study of law 
with Messrs. J. S. & A. J. Hawkins, of E|iton, 
which was continued for two years, when hi was 
admitted to practice in Indiana, his licen.se having 
been signed by Judges J. T. Elliott and David Kil- 
gore, and in March, 1844, removed to Newcastle, 
Henry Co., Ind., where an oflBce was opened in 
connection with the late Judge Samuel E. Perkins, 
of Richmond, Ind., and later of Indianapolis. This 
business connection was continued until the appoint- 
ment of the latter to the Supreme Court Bench, 
when the copartnership was dissolved. Mr. Hen- 
derson was admitted to the bar of the Supreme 
Court of Indiana by examination in November, 1849, 
and to the bar of the United States Supreme Court 
in 1857. He continued to be a resident of New- 
castle until 1851, when he located in Indianapolis. 
Here his abilities soon brought an extended and 
lucrative practice, which has been continued, with 
the exception of a brief interval devoted to other 
pursuits, until the present time, his business having 
pertained rather to commercial interests than to 
litigation of a general character. He has been since 
1852 attorney for the Berkshire Life Insurance 
Company, and for ten years their general financial 
agent for the investment of the company's funds. 
He was one of the incorporators and has been for 
several years a director of the Board of Water- Works 
of the city of Indianapolis. 

Mr. Henderson was in his political affiliations until 
1 854 a Whig. A change of views at that time caused 
him to act with the Democratic party, of which he has 
.since been one of the most active supporters, though 
not a candidate for preferment at its hands. Wil- 
liam Henderson was married in January, 1845, to 
Miss Martha A., daughter of Jonathan Paul, one 
of the earliest settlers of Decatur County, Ind. 
Their two children are William R., a clergyman of 
the Presbyterian Church, settled at Holden, Mo., 
and Sarah (Mrs. J. P. Wiggins), of Indianapolis. 
Mrs. Henderson's death occurred in May, 1854, and 
he was married in April, 1855, to Miss Rachel 
McHargh, of Greensburg, Ind. 



206 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



Though the Indianapolis bar has been so largely 
recruited from local bars, it has not lacked a fine sup- 
ply of homegrown ability and attainment. Among 
those who have acquired a good position and repu- 
tation, after studying and entering the profession 
here, may be named Governor Albert G. Porter, Gen. 
John Coburn, William Wallace, Judge C. C. Hines, 
John Caven, the last better known as the mayor and 
executive officer of countless city duties during the 
greater part of the war, and the efiBcient promoter of 
the water supply and the Belt road and stock-yard 
enterprises, William W. Woollen, John S. Duncan, 
Gen. Fred. Knefler, Ciiarles P. Jacobs, A. S. Wishard, 
and others. Governor Porter came here a young 
man or well-grown lad, and studied his profession 
with Hiram Brown, his father-in-law, and entered 
the bar here, as did Mr. Caven, who also came here a 
young man, and studied law with Smith & Yandes. 

Hon. Albert G. Porter was born at Lawrence- 
burg, Dearborn Co., Ind., April 20, 1824. His 
father was a native of Pennsylvania. At the age of 
eighteen the father became a volunteer soldier in the 
war of 1812. At the engagement of Mississiuewa, 
in the then existing Territory of Indiana, he re- 
ceived a serious wound, which never left him free 
from pain, and which he carried through life as an 
evidence of the honorable part he bore in that mem- 
orable struggle. He was a man of courage and 
convictions, of plea^•ant anecdote and brimming 
liunior. 

The mother came of a family of exceptional busi- 
ness tact and ability, and was accordiniily a woman 
of extraordinary good sense and judgment. She 
believed in cheerfulness, thrift, and energy, sturdy 
honesty, and honest straightforwardness. These fell 
to her son as an inheritance, and under the inspira- 
tion of his young ambition, even in his youth, the 
lines of his character were carved clean and clear. 

His father, at the end of the war of 1812, settled 
in Indiana, at Lawrenccburg. The family remained 
there until the death of the grandfather of young 
Porter on his mother's side, when his father removed 
to Kentucky, having purchased the old homestead 
which belonged to his grandfather. Attached to that 
homestead there was a ferry across the Ohio River, 



nearly opposite Lawrenceburg. This ferry was on 
the regular route of travel from Indiana to Ken- 
tucky, and the father, who was then in moderate 
circumstances, left the entire management of that 
ferry, which consisted both of a horse-boat and a 
skiif, to his two sons. The responsibility which was 
thus early placed upon young Porter, and the neces- 
sity in a great measure of earning his own livelihood 
by labor, developed in him those traces of independ- 
ence of character for which he became noted in later 
life. Many notable people were rowed across the 
Ohio River in his skiff when the travel was not 
heavy enough for the horse-boat. 

At the age of fourteen he had saved money enough 
from the allowances he received fur running the ferry 
to start for college. At the earliest opportunity he 
left the skiff and ferry-boat for Hanover College, 
Indiana, where he entered the preparatory depart- 
ment. There he remained until the scanty means 
which he had saved were exhausted. His father was 
unable to assist him, and there seemed to be no 
recourse fur him except to go back to the horse ferry- 
boat and the skiff, or to seek some other means to 
secure the funds necessary for the education that he 
was determined to have. At this juncture an uncle, 
who was in good circumstances and with whom the 
nephew was a favorite, wrote to him, telling him that 
he had heard that his means were exhausted, that he 
understood that he was determined to have an edu- 
cation, and that he, the uncle, would help him to get 
it. In the language of the letter, he would " see 
him through." That was the happiest day in young 
Porter's life. He speedily and gratefully accepted 
his uncle's proposition, and from that time there were 
fewer obstacles in his youthful career. But the ac- 
ceptance of the offer made necessary a change of 
location. His uncle was a Methodist, and he desired 
that his young ward should enter upon his studies at 
Asbury University, at Greencastle, Ind. 

To this place Mr. Porter went, and he remained 
there until he was graduated in 1843. 

After graduation he returned to Lawrenceburg 
and studied law for about ten months, when his 
health began to fail. Thinking that a change of 
occupation, even for a short time, would be beneficial, 




..-A^. (^^-1^, 



CITY" OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



207 



he secured a position as clerk in the ofiBce of the 
auditor of State, Horatio J. Harris. Governor 
Whitcomb, who was at that time without a private 
secretary, noticed the neatness of the young cleric's 
writing and his habits of accuracy, and requested the 
auditor to allow Mr. Porter to act as his secretary. 
The request was granted. 

Governor Whitcomb was a man of studious habits 
and scholarly attainments, whose association would 
sensibly quicken and influence the efforts of any 
young man. Mr. Porter remained with the Gov- 
ernor for several montjis and then turned again to 
the study of law, locating permanently at Indianap- 
olis, where he entered upon the practice of his pro- 
fession, in which he has long held a front rank at the 
Indiana bar. He vpas appointed May 3, 1851, as 
city attorney for a term of two years, and subse- 
quently (May, 1857-59) served as a member of 
the Common Council. 

In 1853, Mr. Porter, who was then a Democrat, 
was appointed by Governor Wright reporter of the 
decisions of the Supreme Court of Indiana, to fill a 
vacancy that had occurred by the death of the former 
reporter. By this time Mr. Porter had attained a 
reputation for industry and ability, and he was unan- 
imously recommended by tiie Supreme Court judges 
to fill this vacancy. The following year he was 
elected to the same oflBce on the general ticket by 
fourteen thousand majority. 

In 1&56 he came into the newly-formed Republi- 
can party on the question of the exclusion of slavery 
from the Territories, and in 1858, although not a 
candidate for the nomination, Mr. Porter was nomi- 
nated by the Republican convention at Indianapolis 
as a candidate for Congress. Hon. Martin M. Ray 
was his Democratic opponent. 

The district two years previously had gone 
Democratic by eight hundred majority, yet Mr. 
Porter was elected to Congress by a miijority of 
more than one thousand, and two years afterwards, 
when he was a candidate against Robert L. Walpule, 
he was elected by an increased majority. Before the 
meeting of the convention to nominate a candidate 
again, however, Mr. Porter published a card declining 
further service in Congress. Gen. Dumont, then 



in the army, was nominated in his place, but Mr. 
Porter did most of the canvassing for him. 

While in Congress, Mr. Porter was a member of 
the Judiciary Committee for his entire term of ser- 
vice. In this capacity he developed great ability as 
a lawyer, and assisted in drawing the important law 
reports for that committee during his term of service. 
He made a report on the liability of railroads 
which had received land-grants to transport United 
States troops and war material free of charge. Tiiis 
report attracted a good deal of attention, and, upon 
motion of Elihu B. Washburne, was republished at 
the next session of Congress as a very important 
contribution to anti-monopoly literature. That re- 
port took the ground that the provision in the land- 
grant acts should be and ought to be enforced. Be- 
fore that time the monopolies had been having their 
own way, having seemed to control both Congress 
and the executive ; but after Mr. Porter's report 
they were compelled to transport troops and muni- 
tions of war free. The consequence was that the 
revenues of the government were largely increased 
from this source. Like most young members, he 
made a speech in favor of the abolition of the frank- 
ing privilege. He was always on the side of the 
people. In the notable contest relative to the Isth- 
mus of Chiriqui, Mr. Porter took sides against the 
scheme, and antagonized Gen. Dan Sickles, who was 
one of its noted advocates. Another of Mr. Porter's 
notable speeches was on the general subject of the 
war, and condemning all compromise schemes. Mr. 
Porter retired from congressional life because he had 
a young and growing family, and wisely thought 
that he ought not to sacrifice his future in political 
life, but should return to the profession of the law, 
and endeavor to build up his fortune. This he did, 
and in his professional career he was eminently suc- 
cessful. 

Mr. Porter was put in nomination before the con- 
vention of 1876 as a candidate for Governor of In- 
diana, but he caused a letter to be read declining to 
allow his name to be used. Notwithstanding his 
declaration, however, he received many votes in the 
convention. From the time he left Congress he 
devoted himself assiduously to his profession, although 



208 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



he nearly always took some part in State political 
campaigns. He continued his practice until he was 
very unexpectedly invited, in 1881, to accept the 
appointment of First Comptroller of the United 
States Treasury. This appointment was tendered 
him by Secretary Sherman, who knew his position 
as a lawyer in Indiana, and who desired a competent 
person to fill the place. The duties of First Comp- 
troller of the Treasury are not generally understood. 
They are very important, and are entirely judicial. 
It is the one office in the government from whose 
decisions there is no appeal. The Secretary of the 
Treasury cannot annul decisions of the First Comp- 
troller. The word of the First Comptroller of the 
Treasury is the final autliority on all constructions 
of law and interpretations of statutes relating to the 
vast disbursements of the treasury. To this office 
Mr. Porter was summoned without notice by the 
Secretary of the Treasury, and he occupied it with 
distinguished ability. It is a position which requires 
great knowledge of the law and unimpeached in- 
tegrity. 

From this position he was called by the convention 
of June 17, 1880, to represent his party as the 
candidate for Governor of the State. As has been 
the case with every office which he has held, this 
honor has come to him unsought. The campaign 
was made in the spirit of his dispatch of acceptance, 
in which he said, — 

" The contest will be a strenuous one, but if there 
is not one Republican who feels that he is too humble 
to do something for the cause, and all will work 
earnestly and with good cheer, we shall win the 
field. Let us have very many township and school- 
house meetings and few great conventions, and let 
every man feel that what is greatly worth having is 
greatly worth working for." 

He was elected in October, 1880, over Franklin 
Landers, the Democratic nominee, by a majority of 
six thousand nine hundred and fifty-three, — about 
two thousand ahead of the ticket. 

The administration of Governor Porter thus far 
has been one of the most faithful, honest, and eco- 
nomical which has ever characterized t)he history of 
Indiana. There are few men in public life who are 



purer in private character. Possessing an almost 
unlimited fund of anecdote, it is always free from 
indelicate or vulgar utterance. 

Governor Porter is by nature of a conservative 
temperament, but it is a conservatism that comports 
well with all his other characteristics, and has in it 
nothing suggestive of timidity. It is that mental 
poise which causes him to thoroughly investigate 
all questions before taking action upon them. 

These qualities have been brought with effect to 
the discharge of the duties of Governor, noticeably 
in the veto messages sent by him to the Assemblies 
of 1881 and 1883, which, had not a veto intercepted 
the passage of bills, would not only needlessly have 
caused the expenditure of large amounts of money, 
but, in at least one instance, would have invaded the 
constitutional guaranty of personal security. In no 
instance, except upon purely party questions, has a 
bill been reconsidered by the Legislature after his 
veto. The same care has been bestowed upon the 
consideration of public accounts, and in whatever 
degree authority to control public expenditures is 
vested in the Governor he has used it, though 
unostentatiously, in the interest of economy. 

Those in whom the pardoning power has been 
reposed unite in saying that no duty which devolves 
upon a Governor brings with it so great a burden of 
responsibility. Governor Porter has made it a rule 
to investigate each application for pardon through 
independent sources, and if he has issued pardons 
sparingly, it has been because the demands of justice 
outweighed the promptings of a warm sympathy. 
His agreeable manner would lead one to think that 
he could be easily influenced, but, though slow to 
express an opinion on a subject presented for his 
consideration, when once he makes use of his char- 
acteristic expression, " My mind is made up," his 
decision is irrevocable. His idea of right and his 
sense of responsibility are the measure of his firm- 
ness. His habit of thoroughness was never more 
felicitously rewarded than in the prompt and happy 
manner in which it has enabled him to respond to 
invitations of the various conventions, — agricultural, 
mechanical, industrial, educational, and religious, — 
which have all learned to expect a recognition from 




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>t2^^- 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



209 



the head of the State. It reflects credit upon the 
choice of the people that some of these brief addresses 
have been widely copied. 

Among literary men the quality of equanimity is 
frequently attainable, but among men in public life it 
is as rare. It need not mean, as it does in the minds 
of some, the neutralization of one salient character- 
istic by another, but rather the thorough blending of 
all in one syminetrical personality. This quality, 
with an habitual cheerfulness, frankness, and courtesy, 
is Governor Porter's in a strong degree. 

He has brought to the discharge of the duties of 
Governor a fuller measure of resources than even his 
most zealous supporters had expected. 

Governor Porter was married in 1847 to Miss M. 
V. Brown, a lady of rare domestic virtues, a daughter 
of Hiram Brown, Eiq., one of the early noted lawyers 
of Indianapolis. Five of their children are living. 
She died in November, 1875. In January, 1881, 
just before his inauguration as Governor, he was 
married to Miss Cornelia Stone, of Cuba, New York, 
a lady of fine education and attainments, whose 
kindly feelings and refinement have won for her the 
regard of all who know her. 

Few men in public life are more happily situated 
than Governor Porter. He has a sufficient com- 
petency to be independent of the vicissitudes of 
politics; he enjoys the influences of a beautiful home 
lite and the thorough friendship of the people. 

Hon. John Caven. — In presenting to the readers 
of the History of Marion County this sketch of the 
life, character, and public acts of Hon. John Caven, 
of Indianapolis, we shall be required to introduce 
incidents connected with tlie peace and prosperity of 
the capital city of Indiana of the highest importance. 
Tlie necessity for referring to such occurrences will at 
once be conceded when our readers are informed 
that the subject of this sketch held the important 
office of mayor for five terms, making in all ten years 
that he performed the duties of chief magistrate of 
the largest inland city on the continent. When a 
citizen is deemed worthy of great public trusts, and 
in their execution evinces qualities of bead and heart 
which shed lustre upon his name and win the ap- 
proval of the people, it is not surprising that there 



is a popular demand for full knowledge of all the 
facts relating to his career, parentage, birth, early 
advantages and surroundings, employments and ambi- 
tions. The desire for such information is eminently 
praiseworthy. It enables society, and especially the 
students of forces and factors which operate in the 
line of success and eminence, to arrive at correct 
conclusions, and to establish theories of life, its obli- 
gations and possibilities, of the highest advantage to 
reflecting people. The subject of this sketch is the 
descendant of Scotch-Irish and English-Scotch pa- 
rentage, and was born in the State of Pennsylvania, 
Alleghany County, April 12, 1824, and is therefore 
fifty-nine years of age. His father, William Caven, 
was of Scotch-Irish lineage, and his mother, Jane 
(Longhead) Caven, of English-Scotch descent. 
Young Caven did not inherit wealth, nor any of the 
advantages which wealth is supposed to confer; but 
he did inherit what was far better, a healthy body 
and a healthy mind. He inherited a reverence for 
the good, the beautiful, and the true, and upon that 
foundation has erected a character symmetrical in 
outline, embodying the grandeur of stern integrity, 
devotion to honest conviction, and fidelity to trusts 
which knows no wavering, no matter what may be 
the character of the influences and obstacles thrown 
in his way. Generous in judgments, cautious in 
opinion, indefatigable in purpose, John Caven is 
esteemed in the councils of good men a chevalier 
sdiis peur et sans reproche. Such is the exalted 
position Mayor Caven occupies in Indianapolis. And 
if we are asked, What were his youthful surround- 
ings ? the reply is that they were such as to develop 
the best traits of his intellectual and physical organ- 
ism, — he was required to work. His avocations 
brought him in direct contact with the hardy chil- 
dren of toil, and he has a right to be known as a 
" self-made man." His early educational advantages 
were limited. He had few books, and only inferior 
school-teachers, but what he learned was thoroughly 
learned, and as his years increased his thirst for 
knowledge became more intense, until at last the 
perfection, grace, and beauty of his public expres- 
sions, whether oral or documentary, naturally led to 
the conclusion that some renowned university was his 



210 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



alma mater, when in fact his diplomas tell of studies 
in salt-works, in coal-mines, and at the oars of flat- 
boats. 

At school he mastered the old English Reader 
and DaboU's Arithmetic, and with such a foundation 
for an education young Caven went forth to master 
all the required branches of an English education to 
prepare him to enter the legal profession. He came 
to Indianapolis in 1845, and in 1847, at the age of 
twenty-three, entered the law-office of Smith & 
Yandes, where he mastered the intricacies of the law, 
and in due time took his rightful place in a bar dis- 
tinguished for learning and ability. Such an ex- 
ample of pluck and perseverance, if properly studied 
by the youth of Indiana, cannot fail to be productive 
of results of incalculable benefit to the State. With- 
out wealth or influential friends, with an education 
limited to the rudiments, we see a young man steadily 
progressing in the right direction, overcoming ob- 
stacles, growinu in knowledge and the strength which 
knowledge confers, growing in the esteem and confi- 
dence of citizens capable of appreciating good char- 
acter and manly ambition, until he stands the recog- 
nized peer of the best. In 1863, at the age of thirty- 
nine, the subject of this sketch was elected mayor of 
Indianapolis without opposition. His administration 
was of a character to win universal approval, and in 
1865 he was again elected without opposition. Dur- 
ing the period embraced in these two terms — four 
years — Indianapolis was rapidly developing her com- 
manding advantages as a commercial and manufac- 
turing city, and Mayor Caven was contributing by 
his ability and influence to give impetus to her prog- 
ress. In 1868 the people of Indianapolis elected Mr. 
Caven to the State Senate for four years. In that 
body he maintained the high estimate his constitu- 
ents had placed upon his abilities, and his recorded 
votes and speeches attest his statesmanship and 
breadth of views upon all matters touching political, 
educational, and humanitarian subjects. He voted 
for the Fifteenth Amendment, and earnestly advo- 
cated the establishment of schools for colored chil- 
dren. In 1875, Mr. Caven was again elected mayor 
of Indianapolis, and the two terms following he suc- 
ceeded himself in occupying the office, having been 



re-elected in 1877 and 1879. Such facts of history 
are monumental. They bear the highest testimony 
possible to the ability and integrity of Mr. Caven, as 
also to the fidelity which distinguished his public 
career. It is in the fulfillment of the varied duties 
devolving upon him as chief magistrate of Indian- 
apolis that he has specially endeared himself to the 
people. We should prove entirely unworthy of the 
trust confided to us if, in writing a sketch of the 
public service and private virtues of John Caven, we 
should omit to bring into the boldest prominence his 
ceaseless labors, intelligent counsel, unflagging energy, 
and prudent zeal in advancing the growth of the city 
in population, wealth, and business enterprises. In 
the mere routine work of the office of mayor he met 
every requirement of a just and humane magistrate, 
and his efforts to reform the wayward who were 
brought before him will forever remain fadeless cre- 
dentials of his faith in human nature and moral 
suasion ; but in the discussion of economic prob- 
lems in connection with the business expansion of 
the city his views are eminently conclusive of his 
power to grasp questions of the greatest gravity. As 
a business enterprise Indianapolis has' just cause for 
gratulation over the building of the Belt Railroad 
and the establishment of the Union Stock- Yards, 
and it is no disparagement of others to place the 
credit of originating those great enterprises where 
it rightfully belongs. They are commemorative of 
business forecast, and will increase in importance 
with the lapse of years. This credit is justly due to 
Hon. John Caven, the subject of this sketch. An 
account of the initial steps taken by Mayor Caven to 
inaugurate the Belt Road and stock-yard enterprise 
was published in a city paper May 18, 1881. It is 
historical, and well deserving a place in any sketch of 
his life and public services, and is as follows : 

" One day in September, 1875, I walked around 
the old abandoned embankment west of White River, 
and from the Vandalia Road to the river I walked 
all the way through weeds higher than my head, 
pushing them aside with my hands. I took off my 
boots and waded White River, not far from the pres- 
ent Belt Road bridge, and, as the water was deep, I 
got my clothes wet. Climbing over to the partially- 



CITY OP INDIANAPOLIS, 



211 



built abutment on the east bank to dry, I sat there 
for two hours considering the question of whether 
the great work of a road around this city could be 
pat in motion. It would combine all the benefits 
sought, not only furnish work for our laboring pop- 
ulation during the savage year of 1876, or at furthest 
1877, but also relieve our streets. It would also 
bring here an immense cattle business and lay down 
a great taxable propert}'. As I looked over that 
almost desert-looking river bottom, the outlook for 
moving in the matter to furnish bread to hungry 
people a year or two anyway was gloomy, but I then 
and there determined that this was the only project 
that could accomplish the result, and resolved to 
make the effort and see what will and a good purpose 
could do. Having got somewhat tired out, I put on 
my boots and started home, and commenced an in- 
vestigation of the subject of bread-riots and what 
makes cities, — what had made great cities. I exam- 
ined a great deal of history on the subject of what 
had made other cities, — location, natural advantages, 
accidents, minerals, manufactures, and what enter- 
prise and capital had done, and then tried to apply 
these principles to the city of Indianapolis. What 
were our natural advantages, and how might capital 
and enterprise develop them, and what could be 
done to make Indianapolis a great city, and during 
the winter of 1875 I proposed the Belt Road mes- 
sage, and read it in Council on July 17, 1876. It 
was published in Tuesday's morning papers, and on 
Thursday morning I was holding court and noticed 
two men sitting back among the audience for some 
time. After a while they came forward and asked if 
they could speak with me a few minutes. I sus- 
pended hearing a cause to hear what they had to say. 
One of them said he was president of the stock- 
yards at Louisville, and had read the Belt Road mes- 
sage and at once started for Indianapolis, as he re- 
garded it the best location for stock-yards in the 
country, and he wished to come here and engage in 
the business. I told them we wanted the enterprise 
very much, and asked them if they had the means 
to build, and they said they had not, but thought 
perhaps the city would aid them. I told them the 
city would not aid in money, but suggested the idea 



of the exchange of bonds, the plan which was 
adopted and carried out. One of these men was 
Horace Scott and the other Mr. Downing, the pres- 
ent superintendent of the stock-yards. A company 
was formed and the necessary steps taken to carry 
out the enterprise, but met with great opposition." 
Such was the beginning of an enterprise which, 
while it is making its owners rich, is adding indefi- 
nitely to the welfare of the city. 

On Monday, July 17, 1876, Mr. Caven, then 
mayor of the city, presented to the Common Council 
of the city a masterly paper relating to the local ad- 
vantages of Indianapolis as a manuliicturing centre. 
It is worthy of being known as a " State Paper."' It 
discusses the question of fuel with a breadth of 
thought, argument, and illustration worthy of the 
most profound consideration. It is a paper entitled 
to the dignity of "standard authority," and should 
be so regarded by merchants, manufacturers, and 
business men generally. Indeed, we regard it of so 
much importance, as illustrative of the compact reas- 
oning powers of its author, that, if our space per- 
mitted, we should reproduce it entire. 

In what we have said Mr. Caven is given an 
advanced position as a political economist, as a stu- 
dent chiefly of utilitarian enterprises. To this posi- 
tion he is entitled by every consideration of simple 
justice to his eminent thought attainments. But the 
people of Indianapolis have found him to be remark- 
able in other regards than those which we have re- 
corded. We refer particularly to his masterly control 
over men in times of public peril. In the year 1877 a 
wave of extreme danger rolled over the land. Mayor 
Caven was not taken by surprise. He had not been 
unobservant of coming events, nor had he misinter- 
preted the dark shadows which betokened their com- 
ing, and his early and urgent advocacy of the Belt 
Road and stock-yard undertaking was in part, at least, 
the result of his prescience, as the building of the 
road would be the means of giving idle men work 
when other means of employment failed. It is not 
required to more than recall to mind the labor strike 
which occurred in 1877, and the terrible scenes 
enacted in certain localities. When the strike 
reached Indianapolis there was excitement, alarm, 



212 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



and danger. Fortunately Mayor Caven was equal 
to the occasion. He was calm, self-possessed, and 
vigilant. He understood human nature, and fortu- 
nately comprehended the human nature of working- 
men, — he had been a workingman himself. He 
believed in suasion rather than shot-guns ; he did 
not adopt the policy of intimidation ; he discarded 
rash measures. He made no compromises with riot- 
ers, but with lofty courage he pointed out the sad 
consequences which must follow violations of the law, 
and appealed to the strikers, as men and as citizens 
interested in the order and peace of the community, 
to refrain from acts of rapine. He sought work for 
the idle; he provided bread for the hungry. The 
strikers saw in Mayor Caven a stern, courageous 
magistrate, devoid of fear, determined to do his duty 
at all hazards; but they also saw in Mayor Caven 
their friend and a wise counselor. When he spoke 
they listened, and a terrible calamity was therefore 
averted, and after a few days of excitement and 
unrest the peril vanished, not a life was sacrificed, 
not a person was injured, not a dollar's worth of 
property was destroyed, and the good name and fair 
fame of Indianapolis was maintained. Nor was this 
all : Indianapolis in June, 1877, was threatened with 
a bread-riot. Public meetings were held and arrange- 
ments made for a street demonstration. The riot 
spirit was abroad, and danger was imminent. A 
vast concourse of people had assembled in the State- 
House ground, — idle men and hungry men. There 
was excitement ; passion was getting the better of 
judgment. Here again the fact was demonstrated 
that Mayor Caven was the right man in the right 
place. His earnest words stilled the tempest. Men 
ready for acts of violence gave pledges to abandon 
plans which were likely to result in public calamities. 
But Mayor Caven did not abandon the hungry peo- 
ple when they had determined to bear their sufferings 
like law-abiding citizens. He at once proceeded to 
relieve their immediate necessities. The circum- 
stances surrounding that meeting on the 6th of 
June, 1877, are historic, and we should regard this 
sketch of Mayor Caven imperfect if his connection 
with it was omitted. There are circumstances which 
bring into bold relief certain elements of character of 



the greatest value. Again we quote the account as 
published at the time. The meeting having closed. 
Mayor Caven gave an account of further steps to 
restore quiet, as follows : 

" I requested those who were willing to pledge 
themselves to preserve the peace and obey my orders 
in putting down any disturbances to hold up the right 
hand, and every hand went up. There were men 
there who, together with their families, had not 
tasted food for two days, and I told them they 
should not go to bed hungry that night, and- invited 
the crowd to go with me, and we first went over to 
Simpson's bakery, south from the State-House. He 
happened to have a large quantity of bread on hand. 
I commenced handing out six loaves to each one as 
the hungry crowd passed by, and the supply was soon 
all gone. We then went to Taggart's, on South 
Meridian Street, but could not obtain admission, 
and from there to Bryce's bakery, on South Street, 
the hungry crowd following. Mr. Bryce was in bed, 
but got up wlien I told him what I wanted, and J 
directed the crowd to pass the door. Mr. Bryce 
hauded me the loaves, and I handed them to the 
men, giving six loaves to each ; but as the pile be- 
came smaller we reduced the number to five, and 
then to four and three, and then to two, and I in- 
vited those who only received two and three to wait, 
and if we could give them more we would ; and they 
came again, and we gave them all the bread in the 
bakery, and succeeded in supplying them all. As 
soon as I had paid Mr. Bryce his bill I went out in 
the street, and where a few minutes before was that 
hungry crowd was as still as the grave, not a human 
being in sight. They had left for home as quickly 
as supplied, and the only persons were Mr, Dannis 
Greene and myself. At the State-House I told the 
men to go to the Beatty farm in the morning and 
they would find work. About 2 p.m. next day I 
went there, and about three hundred men were at 
work, many of them the hungry men of the night 
before, and it seemed as if the Belt Road, for which 
we had so labored to furnish work to the hungry, 
had thus providentially come to the rescue to the 
very day, almost to the very hour, of our extreme 
necessity. A day later and doors would have been 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



213 



broken for food. As I looked at the men at work, 
the expression of despair of tlie night before lifted 
from their faces, vividly came to my memory the 
cool September afternoon twenty-one months before, 
when I sat drying myself on the partially-built aban- 
doned abutment on the east bank of White Kiver, 
looking over into the cheerless river bottom, wonder- 
ing whether it could be converted into a scene of life 
and activity, and whether from it could be extracted 
work and food for hundreds of starving laborers 
within the next year or two, and almost with faint- 
ness at my heart looked with more of doubting than 
hoping, and now it seemed as if God was with His 
poor, and had not forgotten them." 

In the foregoing we have traced John Caven from 
his childhood, from poverty and obscurity, and, 
whether toiling in the salt-works, manning an oar 
on a flat-boat, or delving in a mine, always display- 
ing the same sturdy zeal to win his way to fortune. 
We have observed him utilizing every advantage, 
educating himself, and an earnest, uncompromising 
devotee of the best theories of life, and animated by 
ambitions which always lead to usefulness, eminence, 
and influence. We have seen him steadily advanc- 
ing in the confidence and esteem of men of wealth, 
education, and high character, and repeatedly chosen 
by them as the exponent of their political, business, 
and social theories, and in every instance responding 
to every prudent requirement, — dignifying office by 
making it subserve every interest of society, mapping 
out new enterprises, and finding new pathways to 
success. As a worker, in the costume of toil ; as a 
lawyer, mastering the philosophy of jurisprudence ; 
as a senator, advocating measures of far-reaching 
consequences ; as a chief magistrate of a growing 
city ; as a man, a citizen, combining personal worth 
with official authority, calming popular unrest and 
giving peace and security in times of peril, — in all 
of these varied situations of life John Caven has 
given proof of extraordinary intellectual power, and 
has won a place in history of commanding promi- 
nence. As a Mason, Mr. Caven is familiar with all 
the mysteries of the ancient order, from an entered 
apprentice to the supreme lights that blaze upon its 
highest elevations, and his oration, delivered on the 



occasion of laying the corner-stone of the Masonic 
Temple in Indianapolis in 1866, demonstrates the 
thoroughness of his knowledge of Masonic mysteries 
and his deep devotion to the principles of the order. 
Mr. Caven glories in seeing workingmen improving 
their condition by association, by giving aid to each 
other in times of need, and the Brotherhoods of 
Locomotive Engineers and Locomotive Firemen of 
the United States and Canada venerate him for the 
sympathy and encouragement he has given them on 
many occasions. 

Such is a brief and necessarily imperfect sketch 
of the life, character, and public acts of Hon. John 
Caven, of Indianapolis. Our privileges do not war- 
rant an entrance upon the domain of his private 
life. If it were otherwise, our task would be em- 
bellished by charming pictures of sympathy for the 
unfortunate and acts of benevolence indicative of a 
nobility of soul that, after all, is the true standard 
by which to measure men. Physically, Mayor Caven 
is a noble specimen of manhood, standing six feet 
and weighing two hundred and ten pounds. His 
complexion is florid, eyes blue and of that peculiar 
type that speaks the universal language of sympathy, 
benevolence, integrity, and moral courage. Mayor 
Caven is a bachelor, but not a recluse nor a cynic. 
He loves home and social enjoyments ; and, above 
all, he is a recognized Christian gentleman, and all 
of his acts, public and private, bear high testimony 
that he holds in the highest veneration all sacred 
things. Time has dealt kindly with Mayor Caven, 
and now, though on the verge of threescore years, 
he bids fair for many years to come to be the centre 
of an extended circle of appreciative citizens, whose 
confidence and esteem is the crowning glory of a life 
well spent. 

The county attorney, William Watson Woollen, is 
also a product of home study, and his success is a 
credit alike to him and his native city. 

William Watson Woollen. — The Woollen 
family are of English lineage. Leonard Woollen, 
the grandfather of William Watson, was born on the 
Eastern Shore of Maryland, but early removed to 
Kentucky, and thence, in 1828, to Indianapolis. 
The birth of his son Milton occurred in Kentucky, 



214 



HISTORY OP INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



in 1806. After tlie removal to Indiaaapolis he was 
married to Miss Sarah, daughter of Joshua Black, a 
pioneer of 1826. By this marriage there were a 
number of children, the eldest of whom was Wil- 
liam Watson, the subject of this biographical sketch, 
born on the 28lh of May, 1838, in Indianapolis. 
His youth, until the age of eighteen, was spent on a 
farm in Lawrence township. Being the elde.st son. 
his services early became valuable to his father, and 
as a consequence very limited advantages of educa- 
tion were enjoyed until his removal, in 1856, to In- 
dianapolis, where he became a student of the North- 
western Christian University. Having determined 
upon the law as a profession, he entered the law 
department of that institution, and at the same time 
studied in the office of Messrs. Gordon & Connor. 
He graduated from the law school, and was admitted 
to the bar in October, 1859. The following winter 
was spent in teaching, and in April, 1860, his name 
was added to the roll of practitioners in the capital 
city of the State. On the 5th of February, 1863, 
Mr. Woollen married Miss Mary A. Evans, of Indi- 
anapolis. He was in October, 1864, elected district 
attorney of the Common Pleas Court for Marion, 
Hendricks, and Boone Counties, and re-elected in 
1866 without opposition. In December, 1881, he 
was chosen by the board of commissioners of Marion 
County attorney for the corporation, and reappointed 
in 1882 and 1883. Extravagant abuses which had 
crept into the public service Mr. Woollen attacked 
with courage and success. He was one of the organ- 
izers of the Indianapolis Bar Association, which, in 
its library and other advantages, has proved an inval- 
uable aid to the attorneys of the city. 

Mr. Woollen is a supporter of the principles of the 
Republican party, but not a strong political partisan. 
He was reared in the faith of the Baptist Church, 
and was formerly a member of the First Baptist 
Church of Indianapolis, from which, with others, he 
withdrew for the purpose of projecting and organizing 
the North Baptist Church, of which he is at present 
a member. 

Mr. Woollen early demonstrated that he was en- 
dowed with a capacity and force well fitted to his 
work. His thorough knowledge of the law and log- 



ical mind enabled him speedily to take his place 
among the successful lawyers of the metropolis. A 
manifest candor and scrupulous integrity mark all his 
professional relations. He never encourages useless 
litigation nor deceives a client who has no grounds 
upon which to rest his case. This conscientious 
dealing has won general confidence and gained for 
him a lucrative practice. 

Although there are three medical colleges in the 
city, and at one time or another have been two or 
three that lived a few years, there has never been 
but one law school here, and that seems to have gone 
out recently. In 1857 a law .school was opened in 
connection with the Northwestern Christian Univer- 
sity, of which the late Judge Perkins was the chief 
teacher. In 1870-71 a law department was formed 
in the same institution, with Judge Byron K. Elliott, 
now of the Supreme Bench, Charles P. Jacobs, and 
Judge Charles H. Test as professors. When the 
university was removed to Irvington the law school 
was continued in the city. Professors Jacobs and 
Elliott continuing with it until within a year or so. 

There were two hundred and fifty-seven lawyers 
in the city in 1883. The profession, like merchan- 
dising, has separated itself into classes, not definitely, 
but with a much less miscellaneous association than 
once prevailed. In a few years we shall have dis- 
tinctively criminal lawyers, and patent lawyers, and 
real-estate lawyers, and claims lawyers, as we now 
have the germs with a pretty plain development here 
and there. It is the tendency of growth and im- 
provement to limit fields of labor and work with 
more elaborate care on fewer subjects, and the legal 
profession will some time obey the irresistible law, 
and make division of its labor as laborers do. A 
bar association manual has existed here for a number 
of years. 

The members of both the bench and bar of Indian- 
apolis and the State of Indiana have deservedly taken 
high rank in the legal profession of not only this 
State but of the whole country. In the chronological 
list of its members will be found men whose history 
is a part of the history of the United States, and 
whose names will be handed down to posterity as 
giants of the law in " Ye olden time." 




'o-^t^^^ 



i. 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



214a 



William Quarles was accounted one of the first 
criminal lawyers of the State, and especially success- 
ful in the cross-examination and bewilderment of 
adverse witnesses. His death followed close on his 
exertions in defense of Merritt Young for killing 
Israel Phillips about 1852. Though a fluent speaker, 
he was not an orator, and succeeded by dint of in- 
cessant use, in every possible form and connection, of 
one or two strong points. He drove them into a 
jury by so much hammering that no amount of 
refutory logic or apppeal could displace them. His 
son John, at one time one of the best debaters of the 
old Union Literary Society, was the superior of his 
father, and if he had lived would have stood among 
the foremost lawyers of the nation unless thwarted by 
his own self-indulgence. He was killed two or three 
years after his father's death by falling down the 
stairway at College Hall and striking his head 
against cither the raised stone sill of the stairway- 
door or the stone curb of the pavement, though 
there were rumors at the time of violence resulting 
from a quarrel. Mr. Quarles, the father, was brother- 
in-law of the late Thomas D. and Robert L. Walpole, 
both noted and successful lawyers both in civil and 
criminal business. They were Kentuckians, and 
sons of Luke Walpole, one of the first merchants of 
the city. Thomas was a prominent politician of the 
Clay school till 1844, when he went over to the 
Democracy. Robert was a Demoefetic candidate for 
Congress near the time of the breaking out of the 
war. 

Hugh O'Neal, who was both county prosecutor 
and United States attorney, and one of the first and 
ablest members of the Indianapolis bar of any 
period, was raised in Marion County, educated at 
Bloomington as one of the two students to which each 
county was entitled, studied law in this city, and 
was admitted to the bar about 1840. He soon made 
himself conspicuous as a Whig orator, and was one 
of the most efficient of the party champions from the 
campaign of 1844 to that of 1852. After that till 
his death he concerned himself little with politics. 
He went to California soon after the gold discovery, 
and did well there, but not so well as to prevent his 
return in a couple of years or so. He resumed the 



practice of the law here, living in his office, — he was 
never married, — and died there, in the second-story 
room next to Fletcher's Bank, during the war. For 
some years he and the late Governor Abram A. Ham- 
mond were partners, and made the most formidable 
firm of the city of that time except Smith & Yandes 
and Barbour & Porter. 

LuciAN Barbour was a Connecticut man, born 
in 1811, graduated at Amherst, in 1837, and came 
West to Madison, in this State, where he studied 
law. He came to Indianapolis about 1840, or a little 
later, and soon formed a partnership with the late 
Judge Wick, in connection with whom he prepared 
a little treatise on business law and forms, known for 
years in the profession as " Wick & Barbour." 
Later he and Governor Porter formed a partnership 
which was maintained till Mr. Barbour went to Con- 
gress in 1855 or later. In 1851 he was one of the 
commissioners appointed by the Legislature to revise 
the statutes and simplify the pleadings and proceed- 
ings of court, as the new constitution required. The 
lawyers used to call this the " Carr code," from 
George W. Carr, one of the commissioners, who had 
been president of the Constitutional Convention, a 
sensible, good man, but no lawyer, and not a strik- 
ingly judicious selection for that service. Mr. Bar- 
bour, always a Democrat till the Kansas-Nebraska 
question came up to disrupt parties, shifted to the 
anti-slavery side in 1854 and was elected to Congress, 
where, after' one term, he was succeeded by Mr. 
Gregg, a Democrat of Hendricks County, and then 
for two terms by his old law-partner, Governor Porter. 
While in partnership with Mr. Wick he married 
Mrs. Wick's sister, Alice, and thus became the 
brother-in-law of the late Lazarus B. Wilson as well 
as his law-partner. Mr. Barbour in the last years of 
his life had associated with him the versatile and 
widely-read Charles P. Jacobs. 

Horatio C. Newcomb is entitled to all respect 
as one of the best lawyers, ablest publicists, and 
truest men that ever honored Indianapolis with a 
residence. He was born in Tioga County, Pa., in 
1821 was removed by his parents when a child to 
Cortland County, N. Y., and thence to Jennings 
1 County, in this State, in 1836. He learned the sad- 



214b 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



dler's trade there, as did Judge Martindale and 
Senator McDonald in their outset of life, but in two j 
or three years ill-health compelled him to quit it, 
and in 1841 he began the study of the law with Mr. 
Bullock, the first lawyer in Jennings County. He 
practiced there till 1846, when he came to Indian- 
apolis and formed a partnership with Mr. Ovid 
Butler. The impression made by his abilities may 
be judged by the fact that in 1849 he was elected 
the second mayor of the city in his twenty-eighth 
year. In 1854 he was elected to the Legislature, 
and in 1860 was elected to the Senate, which he left 
after one session to take the presidency of the Sink- 
ing Fund Board. He was superseded there in 1863 
by the late W. H. Talbott. In the summer of 1864, 
after the retirement of Mr. Sulgrove, he became po- 
litical editor of the Journal, and so continued till 
1868, serving two sessions in the Legislature in that 
time. He went back to the law practice in 1869, 
and continued till he was appointed one of the first 
three judges of the Superior Court in March, 1871. 
This term expired in 1874, when he was elected to 
the same place by a popular and unanimous vote, 
being put on both party tickets, as was Judge Per- 
kins, his associate, who had succeeded Judge Rand 
on the resignation of the latter. Soon after Presi- 
dent Grant tendered him the assistant Secretaryship 
of the Interior, but he declined it. In 1876 he was 
nominated by the Republicans for the Supreme 
Bench, but beaten. Under the act authorizing com- 
missioners of the Supreme Court to assist the judges 
in dealing off the accumulations of the docket, he 
was made one, and died while in that duty. He was 
all his life here a constant and devoted member of 
the Presbyterian Church, and one of the ruling 
elders. As editor of the Journal he showed a ver- 
satility of power with which he had not been credited, 
as well as a sagacity and sound judgment in party 
management that were badly needed to supplement 
the efforts of Governor Morton. He died in May, 
1882, at his residence on North Tennessee Street. 

John H. Bradley. — Although chiefly occupied 
with his business as banker and railroad operator after 
Lis removal to this city, the late John H. Bradley 
sometimes figured in the old court-house with such 



effect of eloquence and legal erudition as was rarely 
equaled by any of his associates. He was a member 
of the Legislature from Laporte County in 1842, and 
formed one of the noted quartette of that year, — he 
and Joseph G. Marshall, of the Whigs, Edward A. 
Hannegan and Thomas J. Henley, of the Democrats. 
Mr. Bradley retired from active business for several 
years before his death, and wrote a small treatise on 
the evidences and philosophy of spiritualism. Dr. 
John M. Kitchen and Morris Defrees are sons-in-law 
of Mr. Bradley. 

William Wallace. — Among the living members 
of the bar are several who still hold foremost places 
in the profession, though some, as Simon Yandes, 
Esq., and Governor Porter, have retired, and are 
engaged in other pursuits. William Wallace, one 
of those who have been longest at the bar of the 
city and are still as active and conspicuous as ever, 
was born in Brookville, Oct. 16, 1825. He came 
to the capital when his father had to take up his 
official residence here as Governor in 1837, and 
has remained ever since. He went to school here 
first to Mr. (now Gen.) Gilman Marston, and later 
to Rev. James S. Kemper, at the old seminary. He 
oscillated for some time between schooling and clerk- 
ing, finally settling down to studying law and work- 
ing in the office of the county clerk, then Robert B. 
Duncan. When the latter left that office in 1850 
Mr. Wallace began the practice of the law, and has 
continued ever since, except during one term in the 
office of county clerk, from 1861 to 1865, beating 
Michael Fitzgibbon. His business has been of a 
quiet kind, not so well calculated to exhibit the 
striking oratorical talent which put him at the head 
of the old seminary boys, at the criminal and litigated 
civil business in which his father shone so brilliantly, 
but it has made him one of the foremost and most re- 
spected of the lawyers of the capital, and put him in 
many positions of responsibility in private . affairs. 
His native eloquence has not been allowed to rust in 
probate business, however. He is one of the fore- 
most Odd-Fellows of the State, and has more than 
occupation enough in making addresses for the order 
on formal or conspicuous occasions. No man in the 
city stands higher or by a better title of native gen- 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



21-Jc 



erosity and manliness and unspotted honor than 
William Wallace. 

Gen. John Coburn, whose life, however, presents 
a striking contrast of variety and incessant activity 
to the unvarying smoothness of the other's, is an old 
schoolmate and life-long friend of William Wallace. 
He was born in this city, Oct. 27, 1825, very soon 
after the removal of his father, the late Henry P. 
Coburn, clerk of the Supreme Court from 1820 to 
1852, from Corydon to the new capital. His 
early education was chiefly acquired at the old 
seminary, whence he went to Wabash College in 
1842, graduating in 1846. He served as deputy to 
his father and studied law till 1849, when he was 
admitted to the bar, practicing for some years as the 
partner of Judge N. B. Taylor, and later of Governor 
Wallace. On the death of the latter while occupying 
the bench of the Common Pleas Court, Mr. Coburn 
was appointed to the vacancy, and elected the year 
following. On the 18th of September he was com- 
missioned colonel of the Thirty-third Regiment, hold- 
ing the command steadily till he was mustered out, 
Sept. 20, 1864. The next year he was brevetted 
brigadier-general. The first experience of his regi- 
ment was a rough one. It left this city on the 28th 
of September, 1861, and on the 21st of October was 
fighting Gen. Zollicoffer at Wild Cat, Ky., where 
that distinguished rebel was killed, and our Hoosier 
colonel exhibited the coolness and commandiDg force 
that were needed for a serviceable and honorable mil- 
itary career. After this it was stationed at Crab 
Orchard, Ky., until early in January, and full two- 
thirds of the men were down with the measles. After 
this Col. Coburn was in and about Cumberland Gap 
for a long time, but early in 1863 was sent to Nash- 
ville, and thenee to Franklin, Tenn., where, during 
an engagement into which he was forced by the im- 
prudence of a temporary superior, some four hundred 
of his men and himself were taken prisoners. The 
men were paroled, but he was taken to Libby, and 
was there at the time a Union force gave the city 
of Richmond a considerable fright. His life there 
was that of hundreds of others with which the 
country is familiar. In the Atlanta campaign his 
regiment was one of the foremost, and he was the 



officer deputed by the commander to receive the 
surrender of the city. In October, 1865, he was 
elected to the Circuit Court Bench, but resigned to 
go to Congress in 1866. He served four terms in 
Congress with a record of as good service and hard 
work as any man in the body, and with as high 
consideration from his fellow-members. He was 
chairman of the Military Committee, one of the most 
important in the House at that time, and, besides the 
unknown work of legislation, illustrated his congres- 
sional career by speeches of unusual force of style 
and familiarity with his subjects. He never spoke 
for buncombe or to have a little exhibit of his services 
to frank to his constituents, but because he knew 
something on the subject that needed to be told and 
a good many needed to learn. So strong an impres- 
sion had he made that on the resignation of Secretary 
Belknap he was urged for the War Department. It 
is a pity he hadn't got it ; we have had no such man 
since. On the expiration of his congressional term 
Gen. Coburn accepted an appointment as one of the 
commissioners to settle the complicated disputes about 
the titles of land in Hot Springs, Ark. This work 
he completed but a year or two ago. Since then he 
has been constantly engaged in his profession. 

Napoleon B. Taylor was born October 18, 1820, 
in Campbell County, Ky., and came to this place a 
child with his father, the late Robert Taylor, one of 
the earliest of our brick-masons. He, like his old 
friends Wallace and Coburn, was an " old seminary 
boy," leaving the school to study law about 1842 or 
1843. For some time after his admission to the 
bar he mixed bricklaying with law to have some- 
thing to do and make something to live, but in 1849 
he formed a partnership with the late John L. Ketch- 
am, and since then has confined himself to the law. 
He worked his way up slowly, but he never got a 
foot ahead and slipped back two. What he made he 
held, and in a few years he came to be known over 
the State as peculiarly skillful and able in the prepa- 
ration of cases for the Supreme Court. That reputa- 
tion he has kept and increased ever since. In 1853 
he and Gen. Coburn formed a partnership for about 
throe years. In 1872 he formed a partnership with 
his son Edwin and Judge Rand, one of the first 



214d 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



judges of the Superior Court, which was maintained 
till Judge Taylor's electiou to the Superior Bench in 
1882. In 18G4 he was nominated for reporter of the 
Supreme Court against Gen. Ben. Harrison and beaten, 
and he was frequently talked of for the nomination for 
the Supreme Bench. He stands among tlie first law- 
yers of the State for erudition and sound judgment, 
and among the first citizens of Indianapolis for all 
the qualities of good citizenship. 

Btron K. Elliott, judge of the Supremo Court 
■ from the central district of the State, was born in 
Butler County, Ohio, Sept. 4, 1835, lived in Hamil- 
ton till 1849, then removed to Cincinnati, and on the 
21st of December, 1850, to this city. He studied law 
here, and was admitted to the bar in February, 1858, 
and in May, 1859, was elected city attorney, — a most 
creditable .proof of ability and character to command 
such a place in the first year of professional life, 
and at the early age of twenty-four. He went into 
the hundred days' service in May, 1864, in Col. 
Vance's One Hundred and Thirty-second Regiment, 
as captain, but was put upon Gen. Milroy's staff in 
two or three weeks as assistant adjutant-general. 
On his return to the law he was elected city attorney 
again in May, 1865, and re-elected in 1867 and 
1869. His four terms in that office enabled him to 
make it a position of importance, worth a good law- 
yer's tenure and attention, and it had been a mere 
party makeweight previously. In October, 1870, 
he was elected judge of the Criminal Court, and 
resigned the office of city attorney. In November, 

1872, he resigned the judgeship to take the city 
solicitorship unanimously tendered him by the Coun- 
cil. He was elected city attorney again in May, 

1873, and in October, 1876, one of the judges of 
the Superior Court. He was again nominated for 
the place by acclamation in March, 1880, but re- 
ceiving the Republican nomination for Supreme 
judge in June of the same year, he accepted that 
and was elected in the following October. He was 
made chief justice at the November term, 1881, and 
served through that term. In and out of the pro- 
fession he is regarded as one of the purest, fairest, 
and most clear-sighted judges that have occupied the 
appellate bench in this generation, and in no rulings 



is greater or more general confidence felt than in 
his. 

Fabius M. Finch was born in Western New York 
in 1811, and came to Ohio in 1816, with his father. 
Judge John Finch, and from Ohio came to this 
county in 1819, being the first family in the New 
Purchase, except possibly the Whetzels, at the 
Bluflfs. The settlement was made near Noblesville, 
which for some time was made a part of Marion 
County. Several families came with the Finches. 
In 1828 the future judge came to this place and 
studied law with Judge Wick, whose first wife was 
his sister. He was admitted to the bar in 1831, at 
the age of twenty, showing unusual maturity of in- 
tellect, and settled at Franklin, Johnson Co., where 
he remained till 1865, when he removed perma- 
nently to this city. He was elected judge of the 
Fifth Circuit in 1842 by the Legislature, and in 1859 
was elected to the judgeship of this circuit by the 
people, serving one term. For some years he and 
his son, John A , have confined their business largely 
to insurance cases, and have made a very high repu- 
tation in that branch of the profession. John A. 
was the State commissioner at a national meeting of 
insurance men in New York some years ago, and 
has published several elaborate articles on insurance 
organizations, methods, and law, which have attracted 
wide attention and commendation. 

Gen. Ben. Harrison was born in February, 1833, 
in Cincinnati, where he received his early education. 
He graduated at Miami University, Oxford, Ohio, and 
studied law with the celebrated Judge Bellamy Storer. 
He came to Indianapolis in 1854, and practiced law by 
himself for some years. About 1856 he made a more 
conspicuous place for himself by convicting a negro 
cook at the Ray House of poisoning some of the 
boarders. His management of that case was univer- 
sally commended by the profession, which before that 
had been a little disposed to regard the tow-headed 
youngster, who looked younger than he was, as pos- 
sessing his best claim to attention in the fact that 
he was the grandson of his grandfather. He soon 
showed, when the chance came, that he could build 
broadly and solidly enough on his own ioundation, 
and he has done it most effectually. His first public 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



214e 



position was that of reporter of the Supreme Court in 
1861. In August, 1862, he accepted the command 
of the Seventieth Regiment, and remained witli it till 
it was mustered out at the close of the war in June, 
1865. A sketch of the history of that regiment 
will be found in the chapter on the City and County 
in the War. Gen. Harrison was associated with 
Governor Porter and William P. Fishback, as Por- 
ter, Harrison & Fishback, for several years. Mr. 
Fishback, who came here in 1856 from Ohio and 
soon established a good practice and reputation, left 
the firm in 1870 to take control of the Journal, and 
later of the St. Louis Democrat, and never rejoined his 
associates, first accepting the clerkship of the United 
States Court for a couple of years, and then resign- 
ing that and confining his work to the mastership in 
chancery of the same court. The firm then became 
Porter, Harrison & Hines, by the accession of Judge 
Hines, and remained so till Mr. Porter retired a few 
years later, when Mr. Miller, of Toledo, came here to 
take a place in the firm in 1874, which then became 
Harrison, Hines & Miller. This has only recently 
been changed by the accession of John B. Elam. 

In 1876 the Republicans deemed it best to re- 
move Godlove S. Orth, their nominee for Governor, 
and put Gen. Harrison in his place. It was a very 
embarrassing situation, but Mr. Harrison made as 
much of it as any man could, and so fixed his 
hold on the regard of his party that his nomination 
to the United States Senate, when the Republicans 
gained control of the Legislature in the election of 
1880, was a foregone conclusion. There was no 
serious contest made against him. Now his judicious 
course in the Senate has given him no inconspicuous 
chance for the Presidential nomination. 

Judge Hines, so long a partner of Gen. Harri- 
son, was born in Washington County, N. Y., Dec. 
10, 1836, whence his mother, who was left a widow 
with her young family , went to Lonsdale, Conn., where 
Cyrus worked for several years in the cotton-mills. 
Then for a year or two he studied and taught in the 
Normal Institute at Lancaster, Mass., and thence he 
came to Indianapolis in 1854. He studied law with Si- 
mon Yandes, Esq., and became a partner in December, 
1855, continuing until the latter retired from the pro- 



fession in 1860. Mr. Hines wont into the three 
months' service as sergeant of Company H, Eleventh 
Regiment, and when that was througii went into the 
three years'service, attaining the position of colonel of 
the Fifty-seventh Regiment, in which he is described in 
the adjutant-general's official history of the regiment as 
" an officer of great and acknowledged ability, who had 
chiefly formed the character of the regiment." He 
was so severely wounded at Stone River that he had 
to resign. In 1866 he succeeded Judge Coburn in 
the Circuit Court, and held the place till 1870, when 
he was succeeded by Judge Tarkiugton. Mr. Miller, 
who entered the firm with Gen. Harrison and Col. 
Hines in 1874, was born in Oneida County, N. Y., 
September, 1840, studied law with Chief Justice 
Waite in Toledo, then practiced for eight years in 
Fort Wayne, and came here in 1874. John B. 
Elam served through the war as a private soldier 
in an Ohio regiment. When the war was over he 
studied and graduated at Oxford (Ohio) College, 
where Governor Morton and Senator Harrison were 
once students, then studied law in the law depart- 
ment of the Ann Arbor University, and came to this 
city in 1874. In 1878 he was made prosecuting 
attorney, and convicted the first three men ever hung 
in Marion County, William Merrick, John Achey, 
and Louis Guetig. He is regarded as one of the 
foremost of the younger members of the bar, and 
as prominent politically as professionally. 

Gen. Fred. Knefler has long held an honorable 
position at the bar here, and was known for years as 
deputy clerk before he entered the bar. He is a 
Hungarian by birth, and when a mere boy served in 
the revolutionary army of 1848 under Gen. Bern, 
one of Kossuth's best leaders, and was wounded. 
He came to this country with his father. Dr. Knefler, 
in 1849, and learned the carpenter's trade first. 
Then he got a place in the clerk's office, and so 
worked his way into the bar. In 1861 he served in 
the Eleventh Regiment of three months' men as 
lieutenant. In the three years' service he was 
captain of Company H in the Eleventh, and in Au- 
i/ust 1862, was appointed colonel of the Seventy- 
ninth, which led the way in the charge at Mission 
Ridge, Col. Knefler leading the regiment. He re- 



214f 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



tired from the service at the close of the war with 
the brevet of brigadier. He formed a law-partner- 
ship with the late John Hanna, which was only 
terminated by the death of the latter. He succeeded 
William H. H. Terrell as pension agent here, as 
noticed in the list of government oflBcers resident 
here. 

The partners of ex-Senator and ex-Governor 
Thomas A. Hendricks have been among the fore- 
most members of the bar of the State and city for 
many years. Ex-Governor Baker went into the 
firm in 1873, when Mr. Hendricks became Governor. 
He had been one of the most prominent of the law- 
yers of the State for years in Evansville before he 
came to Indianapolis to act as Governor while Gov- 
ernor Morton was in Europe in 1865-66. He re- 
mained here thenceforward, and took as commanding 
a place at the bar here as at his old home. In 1864 
he was provost-marshal of the State on duty here, 
and arrested a mob of re-enlisted veterans of the 
Nineteenth Regiment who attacked and proposed to 
demolish the Sentinel office for some allusion in the 
paper that they disliked. He met the angry men on 
the stairs, with their guns in their hands, and held 
them back till he brought them to reason. Two of 
the most conspicuous features of his administration 
were the payment of the State debt of 1836 and the 
official proclamation of the stoppage of interest in 
1870, and the recommendation of asylums for the 
incurable insane, now just put in the way of accom- 
plishment. 

Oscar B. Hord, attorney-general of the State 
from 1862 to 1864, and for twenty years a partner 
of Governor Hendricks, was born in Kentucky, 
near Maysville, where he was brought up. He 
studied law with his father, and came to Greens- 
burg, in this State, in 1849. In 1852 he was made 
prosecuting attorney, serving two terms. Some years 
later he and the late Col. Gavin, his partner, made a 
digest of the statutes of the State, which was greatly 
needed, and gave its authors a substantial professional 
reputation at once. In 1862, Mr. Hord was elected 
attorney-general and removed to Indianapolis, forming 
a professional connection with Mr. Hendricks which 
has never been sundered since, except during the 



latter's term as Governor (from 1873 to 1877). Mr. 
Hord is one of the hard-working men of the Indian- 
apolis bar, and stands second to none in the care he 
gives his cases and thoroughness of his investigation 
of the law. He is one of the steadiest of friends 
and most genial of companions, as well as one of the 
first lawyers of the State. He was born in 1829. 

Mr. Abram "W. Hendricks, a cousin of the ex- 
Governor, is well up towards sixty, but none the less 
a close student and indefatigable worker. He is held 
by the profession to be one of the most thoroughly- 
read lawyers in the country, and was so well esteemed 
twenty-six years ago that he was nominated by the 
Republican party for the Supreme Bench. He was 
born in Westmoreland County, Pa., and came to 
Madison, to his uncle, in 1839. He studied law 
with Governor William Hendricks, and graduated at 
the Lexington (Kentucky) Law School. For some 
years he was a partner of William McKee Dunn, late 
judge-advocate-general. He came to Indianapolis in 
1866, to join his cousin, Thomas A., and Mr. Hord, 
when the firm became Hendricks, Hord & Hendricks, 
now Baker, Hord & Hendricks. 

John C. New, though he never figured as a law- 
yer, was for a good many years clerk of the county, 
and as well known a figure of the court as the judge. 
He was born in Jennings County, in 1831. His 
father, the late John B. New, was a cabinet-maker 
by trade and a Christian preacher by preference, 
and removed to Greensburg when John was still a 
child. After a course of country town schooling he 
went to Bethany, Va., where he took a four years' 
course under the late Alexander Campbell, graduating 
fairly in 1851. His cousin, Jeptha D. New, member 
of Congress two terms from the Jennings County Dis- 
trict, was at the same college at the same time. Rev. 
John B. New removed to this city about the time his 
son graduated, and here the latter studied law with 
Governor Wallace, was admitted to the bar in 1852, 
and having a good memory, an aptitude for system, 
and a naturally good business disposition, with a neat, 
legible cbirography. Clerk Stewart made him deputy 
soon afterwards ; and when Stewart died, leaving a 
year of his term vacant, the County Board put the 
deputy there, and at the next election the people 



CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS. 



2140 



elected him over George MeOuat by a slender ma- 
jority. Here he laid the foundation of his fortune, 
and left the oflSce a young man, but already a rich 
one. Governor Morton made him quartermaster early 
in the war ; then he served a term in the State Sen- 
ate; then, in 1865, went as cashier into the First 
National Bank, and remained there ten years, till he 
was made treasurer of the United States in Spinner's 
place. A year here sufficed him, and he returned to 
the bank as vice-president. A little later he bought 



out William H. English, and became president. In 
1880 he was made chairman of the Republican State 
Central Committee, and bought the Journal. He 
was also the Indiana member of the National Repub- 
lican Committee. He has been the First Assistant 
Treasurer of the United States for several years, 
which position he has recently resigned. Mr. New 
has been twice married, — first to Melissa, daughter 
of the late Joseph Beeler, and next to Miss McRae, 
daughter of a son-in-law of Dr. J. H. Sanders. 



William P. Adkinson. 
Henry C. Allen. 
Fremont Alford. 
Ayres & Brown. 
Ayres & Cole. 
Bailey & Van Buren. 
John W. Baird. 
Baker, Hord & Hendricks. 
James P. Baker. 
Pliny W. Bartholomew. 
Will F. A. Bernhamer. 
Isaac L. Bloomer. 
William Bosson. 
John W. Bowlus. 
Daniel M. Bradbury. 
Cornelius D. Browder. 
Wilbur F. Browder. 
William T. Brown. 
Samuel M. Bruce. 
John C. Brush. 
James Buchanan. 
Salmon A. Buell. 
H. Burns. 
Burns & Denny. 
Byfiold & Howland. 
Bynum & Beck. 
Howard Cole. 
Canary & Medkirk. 
Nathaniel Carter. 
Vinson Carter. 
Carter & Bin ford. 
Charles E. Clark. 
Ross Clark. 



ROLL OF ATTORNEYS. 

John W. Claypool. 
Claypool & Ketcham. 
Coburn & Irvin. 
W. H. Corbaley. 
Cropsey & Cooper. 
Vincent G. Clifford. 
James B. Curtis. 
Dailey & Pickerell. 
Benjamin F. Davis. 
Guilford A. Deitch. 
Austin F. Denny. 
Robert Denny. 
Almon H. Dickey. 
Samuel R. Downey. 
Charles A. Dryer. 
Duncan, Smith & Duncan. 
Dye & Fishback. 
John B. Elam. 
William F. Elliott. 
Harmon J. Everett. 
Charles W. Fairbanks. 
Finch & Finch. 
Florea & Wishard. 
Samuel W. Fogger. 
James E. Franklin. 
George W. Galvin. 
Jonathan W. Gordon. 
John C. Green. 
Otto Gresham. 
Griffiths & Potts. 
Orvin S. Hadley. 
Upton J. Hammond. 
Jesse D. Hamrick. 



Harding & Hovey. 
James W. Harper. 
Charles 0. Harris. 
Harris & Calkins. 
Harrison, Hines & Miller. 
Jonathan S. Harvey. 
Lawson M. Harvey. 
Charles R. Haseley. 
Roseoe 0. Hawkins. 
Charles C. Heckman. 
James E. Hellei'. 
Heinrichs & Kessler. 
William Henderson. 
George G. Hendrickson. 
John A. Henry. 
Maxwell B. Henry. 
Herod & Winter. 
Isaac Herr. 
James T. Hill. 
Hill & Martz. 
John A. Holman. 
Louis Howland. 
William A. Hughes. 
Charles P. Jacobs. 
Ovid B. Jameson. 
Lewis Jordan. 
John M. Judah. 
Julian & Julian. 
Kealing & Clifford. 
Joseph M. Keatinge. 
Justin A. Kellogg. 
John Kidd. 
Israel Klingensmith. 



2r4H 



HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY. 



Knefler & Beiryhill. 


David K. Paultow. 


William F. Stilz. 


Orlando Knowlton. 


William Patterson. 


George W. Stubbs. 


Eugene G. Kreider. 


William H. Payne. 


Horace G. Study. 


Ira M. Kratz. 


William A. Peelle, Jr. 


James Sulgrove. 


William C. Lamb. 


Peelle & Taylor. 


William Sullivan. 


Lamb & Mason. 


Samuel E. Perkins. 


Sullivan & Jones. 


John T. Leeklider. 


George K. Perrin. 


Lucius B. Swift. 


Frank H. Levering. 


Henry D. Pierce. 


Talbott & Wheeler. 


Frank P. Lindsay. 


George T. Porter. 


John S. Tarkinston. 


Reuben D. Logan. 


Wallace W. Pringle. 


Taylor, Rand & Taylor. 


William A. Lowe. 


James A. Pritchard. 


La Frank R. Teed. 


Dow McClain. 


Rand & Winters. 


Harrison T. Tincker. 


Z. T. McCormack. 


William A. Reading. 


Tobin & McCray. 


McDonald & Butler. 


Warwick 11. Ripley. 


John W. Tomlinson. 


McMaster & Boice. 


Ritter & Ritter. 


Thomas J. Trusler. 


Gilbert B. Manlove. 


Roachc & Lamme. 


Turpie & Pierce. 


E. B. & Charles Martindale. 


Charles F. Robbins. 


Richard S. Turrell. 


Francis J. Mattler. 


Thaddeus S. Rollins. 


Flavins J. Van Vorhis. 


Harry J. Milligan. 


Rooker & Hatch. 


Joseph W. Walker. 


Jehu Milner. 


John N. Scott. 


William & Lewis Wallace. 


James L. Mitchell. 


Adolph & G. Seidensticker. 


William B. Walls. 


John 0. Moore. 


Silas M. Shepard. 


John C.Wells. 


Merrill Moores. 


Horace E. Smith. 


Williams & Johnson. 


John Morgan. 


J. Hervey Smith. 


Harry L. Wilson. 


Morris & Newberger. 


Robert E. Smith. 


Oliver M. Wilson. 


Frank W. Morrison. 


Spaan & Heiner. 


Wilson & Wilson. 


Wilson Morrow. 


George W. Spahr. 


George W. Winpenny. 


Charles R. Myers. 


Horace Speed. 


Bennett F. Witt. 


David A. Myers. 


William W. Spencer. 


William Watson Woollen. 


Nicbol & Buskirk. 


Roger A. Sprague. 


Frank M. Wright. 


Lester L. Norton. 


Charles S. Spritz. 


George B. Wright. 


Orlando B. Orton. 


Stanton & Scott. 


Granville S. Wright. 


Eben A. Parker. 


Stevenson & Stevenson. 


Augustus B. Young. 


Parmlee & Holladay. 


George W. Stillwell. 


John Young. 




ylC^ , yaUuiy \^ 



CITY OP INDIANAPOLIS. 



215 



CHAPTER IX. 

CITY OF INDIANAPOLIS— (Co,i(mi,erf.) 
BANKS, BANKERS, AND INSURANCE. 

For twenty-five years the old State Bank and its 
Indianapolis branch furnished the best and the only 
safe paper currency in the State. The hard times of 
1841 to 1845 were alleviated to some extent by the 
issue of " State scrip," and until the Free Banking 
Act of 1852 the only home currency we had was 
made up of State paper and State Bank paper. The 
beginning of this serious crisis in the condition of the 
State and Marion County occurred while Nathan B. 
Palmer was in the State Treasury, the end of it 
while Samuel Hannah was there, when the progress 
of the old Madison Railroad gave promise of a new 
era. 

Hon. Nathan B. Palmer was born at Stoning- 
ton, Conn., Aug. 27, 1790, and by the death of his 
father left an orphan at the early age of ten years. 
Subsequent to this event his mother removed to New 
York State, accompanied by her son. Here he grew 
to man's estate and married Miss Chloe Sacket, who 
aided not a little to her husband's success in life. 
The newly-married pair removed to Pennsylvania in 
1812, in which State Mr. Palmer was elected to more 
than one oiEce of trust and honor before his thirtieth 
year, in each of which he acquitted himself with 
credit. More than two-thirds of a century ago Mr. 
Palmer came down the Ohio River and settled in 
Jefferson County, Ind., where he resided for four- 
teen years, and during this period was chosen to 
represent his county in the State Legislature. In 
1833 he was elected Speaker of the House, and dis- 
played marked ability as an efficient and just presiding 
officer. In 1835 he became a permanent resident of 
Indianapolis, having been chosen to fill the responsible 
office of State Treasurer. As a public servant, having 
large and important trusts in his hands, his career 
was marked by the most scrupulous integrity and 
exactness. While in charge of the State finances 
large amounts of scrip were issued and used as a 
circulating medium. He was in 1841 made ex- 
aminer of the State Bank and its branches, and in 



this responsible position manifested the same ability 
and sh