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^^^^^U^ c^ Cj!n^a/2M^ 




A Narrative Account of Its Historical Progress, Its People 
and Its Principal Interests 

Edited by 


Mr. H. p. Loveland 
Mr. James W. Hurst 
Hon. Chas. A. Cole 
Mr. Alfred E. Zeiirixg 






1319 L 


Eighty years liave passed since Miami county was organized under 
the provisions of an a^t of the Indiana legislature. To note accurately 
and make a record of the principal events of those eighty years is the 
purpose of this work. Although this history ni;iy luit iill the proverbial 
•'long felt want,"' the editor and publisluMs desire to state that no 
effort has been spared to make it both authentic and comprehensive. 

The division of the subject matter into topics and the arrangement 

of chapters is, we believe, the best that could be made and will prove 

of great convenience to the reader. The chapter on the City of Peru 

was written under the immediate supervision of Hon. Charles A. Cole, i 

whose long residence in the city and close identification with municipal 

.,^, ati'airs render him peculiarly qualified for tlie task. In the preparation 

' of the chapter on the Bench and Bar acknowledgement is due to li. P. 

<X Loveland, Nott X. Antim, W. B. McClintic and E. P. Kling. who 

N furnished valuable information relating to the courts, the Bar Associa- 

Nf tion, etc. 

■^ Acknowledgement is also due to Drs. J. O. Ward, E. H. Andrews, 

v:} M. A. McDowell and C. J. Helm for their assistance in the preparation 

of the chapters on Medical Profession and Cliarities: to Omer Ilolman, 

of the Pern Rej)ul)lican ; Alfred E. Zeliring, of Uennett's Switch; 

James W. Hurst, of Maey; Hal C. Phelps, prosecuting attorney; Frank 

M. Stutesman, Henry Meinhardt, and the various county officials and 

their deputies, all of whom rendered assistance in the collection of 

information, and to Lou Baer for a number of photographs to be 

used as illustrations. 

The editor and his assistants desire to e.x|)ress their thanks and 
obligations to Miss Gertrude II. Thiebaud, lil)rai'iMn of tlie Pern public 
library, and her assistants, Miss Vivian K'eaiii aiid .Miss .Vda YorU, 
for their uinform courtesies while this work was in c<ini-se of prepai'ation. 
As far as it was i)ossible to do so, information has been taken from 
official sources. The works consulted in tlie compilation of the liistory 
include the foJIowinir: 

Official Pi(^/it«<«o«.s'— Reports of the I'nited States Bureau of 
Ethnology; United States Census Reports and liidletins; Reports of 



the Commissioner of Indian Affairs; Reports of the United States 
Department of Agriculture ; Reports of the Indiana State Geologist, the 
Bureau of Statistics, the Bureau of Inspection and the Railroad Com- 
mission; the Adjutant-General's reports; Session Laws of Indiana, and 
the pubUc records of Miami county and the city of Peru. 

Miscellaneous Works — Graham's, Brant & Fuller's and Stephens' 
Histories of Miami county; Meginnis' "Life of Frances Slocum"; Dil- 
lon's W. H. Smith's and Dunn's Histories of Indiana; Levering's "His- 
toric Indiana"; Cockrum's "Pioneer History of Indiana"; 0. H. 
Smith's "Early Reminiscences of Indiana"; Benton's "The Wabash 
Trade Route in the Development of the Old Northwest"; Cox's "Recol- 
lections of the Early Settlement of the Wabash Valley"; Dunn's "True 
Indian Stories"; English's "Conquest of the Northwest"; Grand Lodge 
reports of various fraternal societies, and the files of the Miami county 

Abthub L. Bodubtha. 



Miami County — Location and Boundaries — Lines op Survey — Rivers 
AND Creeks — Underlying Rocks op the Upper Silurian and 
Devonian Periods — Quarries and Lime-kilns — Along the Missis- 
siNEWA — Bog Iron Ore — The Glacial Epoch — The Wabash River 
— Moraines — The Gl.vcial Dript — Economic Geology — Clays — 
Sand — Gravel — Natural Gas and Oil — Primitive Forests and 
Their Destruction 1 


The j\Iound Builders — Theories Regarding Their Antiquity — 
Thomas' Division op the United States into Districts — Char- 
acteristics OF Each District— Few Relics in Miami County — 
The Indians — How Distributed in 1492 — The "Six Nations" — 
The Miami Tribe — Habits and Customs — Their Domain — Vil- 
lages IN the Wabash Valley — The Pottawatomi — Character and 
Traditioxs^Villages — Policies in Dealing with the Indians. .15 


Early Miami Chieps — Little Turtle — John B. Richardville — Legend 
OF How he Became Chief — His Characteristics — Tribal Organi- 
zation — War Chief.s — Shepoconah — Francis Godpeoy — How he 
WAS Chosen War Chief — His Family — His Death and Will — 
Gabriel Godfroy — Pottawatomi Chiefs — Treaties with the Pot- 
tawatomi — Treaties with the Miamis — Full Text of the Great 


Treaty op 1838 — Schedule of Indian Land Grants — Treaty of 
1840— The White Man in Possession 28 



Her Capture by Indians in Her Childhood — The Long Search for the 
Lost Sister — Her Life Among the Indians — Discovered in Her 
Old Age by Colonel Bwing — Correspondence Between Colonel 
EwiNG and Her Family — Visited by Two Brothers and a Sister — 
Refuses to Return to Civilization — Her Death — The Slocum 
Monument 52 



Early Explorations in the New World — French Posts in the 
Interior — Spanish Claims — Conflicting Interests of France and 
England — French and Indian War — Indiana Part of the British 
Possessions — Pontiac — George Rogers Clark's Conquest of the 
Northwest — Indiana a Part op Virginia — The Northwest Terri- 
tory — Campaigns of Harmar, St. Clair and Wayne — Treaty of 
Greenville — Indiana Territory Organized — Treaties op Ces^on — 
Tecumseh and the Prophet — Battle op Tippecanoe — Wab op 1812 
— Battle op the Mississinewa — Battle Ground Association — 
Indiana Admitted as a State — Location of the Seat of Govern- 
ment 67 



Early Explorers and Missionaries — Indian Traders— John McGre- 
gor — First Settlers — The Ewings — Pioneer Life and 
Customs — Amusements of the Early Settlers — A Bear Story — 
Legislation Concerning Miami County — Organized in 1834 — First 
County Officers — Location of the County Seat — First Jurors — 
First County Election — Courthouses and Jail Buildings. .. .80 



Formation of the First Two Civn^ Townships — Now Fourteen in 
THE County — Allen — Butler — Clay — Deer Creek — Erie — Harri- 


SON — Jackson — Pioneer Settlers in Each — First liiiiTiis, Mar- 
riages AND Deaths — Mills and Other Early Industries — Schools 
— Early Relioioi's Services — Towns and Villages — Railroads — 
Miscellaneous Events 109 



Jefferson Township One of the First to be Settled — -Perry — Peru — 
. Pipe Creek — An Indian Village — Richland — Union — Washing- 
ton — Location, Boundaries and Physical Characteristics of 
Each — Pioneer Settlers — Early Births, Marriages and Deaths — 
Primitive Industries — First Religious Meetings — Pioneer Schools 
and Teachers — Towns and Villages — Transportation — Miscella- 
neous Events — The Pioneer's Place in History 132 



The Holman Purchase — Miamisport — Early Settlers — Sketches of 
A Few Pioneers — Peru Laid Out — Secures the County Seat — 
Early Prominent Citizens — First Incorporation of the Town — 
First Officers and Ordinances — The "Red Ladders" — Incorpo- 
rated BY Special Act op the Legislature in 1848 — Hog or No Hog 
— Additions to Peru — Fiee Department — Water Works — Gas 
Works — Electric Light Plant — Commercial Club — City Park — 
Public Improvements — Postoffice — Municipal Finances — List op 
Mayors — Miscellaneous 153 



List of Towns that Are or Have Been in Miami County' — When- 
Founded AND By Whom — The Pioneer Settlers — Early Indus- 
tries and Business Enterprises — Schools and Churches — Wht 
Some Towns Perished — JIiscellaneous Events — Population in 
1910 — List Of Present Postoffices 179 



Early Militia System — The Peru Blues — The Chipanue War — Wab 
With Mexico — The Civil War — Miami County Prompt to Respond 


— Thirteenth Regiment — Other Regiments in which ]\Iia.mi 
County was Represented — Fourteenth Battery — :\IiscELi,ANE- 
ous Enlistments — The Indiana Legion — The Roll of Honor — 
Relief Work at Home — Spanish- American War 204 



First Highways — The Old Strawtown Road — Rivers as Thorough- 
fares — Wabash & Erie Canal — Intern.vl Improvement Act of 
1836 — CoLL^tPSE OF the State System of Improvements — Bene- 
fits Resulting from the Canal — Its Final End — Steamboat 
Navigation of the Wabash — The Railroad Era — Lake Erie & 
Western — The Wabash — Pan Handle — The Eel River Railroad 
— Peru & Detroit — Chicago, Indiana & Eastern — Chesapeake 
& Ohio — Electric Line — Miami County's System of Drainage 241 



Public Finances — Bonded Debt of the County — Banks — Trust 
Companies — Agriculture — Statistics Relating to Crops and Live 
Stock — Manufacturing — Character of the First Factories — 
Peru as a Manufacturing Center — Natural Gas Era — Its Influ- 
ence ON Industry — Oakdale — Report of Bureau op Inspection— 
— The Oil Field — Outside Industries — Factories in Other 
Towns 267 


First Schools in Indiana — Congressional School Fund — State 
Endowment Fund — Pioneer School Houses — Character of the 
Early Teachers — The Three R's — County Seminaries — Peru 
Collegiate Institute — William Smith 's School — Denver College 
— First High School in Peru — Present High School — Value of 
School Property in the County — Vocational Education — County 
Superintendents • — Distribution of School Funds — Parochial 
Schools — The Press — Brief Histories op the Various Newspapers 
— John A. Graham — Early Library Projects — Peru Public 
Library — School Libraries 291 




Purpose of the Courts — Eighth Judicial District — First Courts 
IN Miami County — Character of the Early Judges — The Court- 
House Fire of 1843— Wabash Bridge Case — Personal Mention 
OF Judges — Seal of the Circuit Court — Change in Courts by the 
Constitution of 1852 — Probate Court — Court of Common Pleas 
— Court of Conciliation — List op Judges and Prosecuting 
Attorneys — The Bar — Sketches of Old Time Lawyers — Bar 
Association — Attorneys in 1914 — A Few Cases 310 


Early Conditions in the Wabash Valley — Work and Fees of the 
Frontier Doctor — ^Ialaria — Character of the Pioneer Physician 
— His Remedies — His Social Standing — Balzac's Tribute to the 
Country Doctor — Brief Sketches of Early Practitioners — List 
OF Old Time Doctors — Miami County' IMedical Society — Medical 
Registration Law — Licensed Physicians in Miami County... 831 



Fin>T .\I issionaries — The Catholics — Methodists — Presbyterians — 
]5ai'Tists — German Baptists or Dunkards — Christians or Dis- 
ciples — New Lights — United Brethren — Friends or Quakers — 
Episcopal Church — Lutherans — Congregationalists — Seventh 
Day Adventists — The Church of God — Universalists — Brief 
Histories of the Various Congregations and Theik Houses of 
Worship 344 



Overseers of the Poor in Early Days — -Custom of Farming Out 
Paupers — Its Disadvantages — Miami County's First Poor House 
— Present County Asylum — Old Folks' and Orphan Children's 
Home — Dukes iMbmorial Hospital — Wabash Railway Hospital 


— Country Graveyards by Townships — Odd Fellows' Cemetery 
AT Macy — Mount Hope Cemetery at Peru 370 



First Flag in JIiami County — Lawlessness — A Vigilance Committee 
— Petition to President Polk — Early Prices and "Wages — The 
Stranger's CtRavb — Trading Wives — Queer Real Estate — Some 
Prominent People — Political Meetings — Temperance — Disas- 
trous Fires — A Stormy Summer — Historic Floods 3S3 



Agricultural Societies and Fair Associations — Social and Literary 
Clubs — Miscellaneous Societies — Detective Association — Amboy 
Civic and Industrial Club — -Masonic Fraternity — Independent 
Order op Odd Fellows — Knights of Pythias — Grand Army of 
the Republic — Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks — Im- 
proved Order op Red Men — Otheb Fraternal Orders — CatSolic 
Societies — Daughters of the Revollttion — Young Men's Chris- 
tian Association .- 409 



Increase in Population and We^vlth — Chronology — Events Le.\d- 
ing up to the Organization of and Connected with the History' 
of the County — Official Roster — A Complete List of County 
Officers from 1834 to 1914 429 


Aaron, Jacob, 7'-iii 

Aaron X. Dukes Memorial Hospital. 374 

Aboriginal inhabitants, 15 

Agrii'iiltiire, 272 

Af;ricultural societies ami fair ass(icia 
tions, 409 

Alspacli, Abner J., 697 

Altnian, Snnford 10., 459 

Allen Township, location, 110; area, 110; 
first actual white settler, 110; first 
entry of land, 111; organized. 111; 
first white child born, 112; first school 
in, 112; schools, 112; earliest indus- 
tries, 112; first churches, 112; ceme- 
teries, 376 

Aniboy, ISO 

Amboy Bank, 271 

Amboy Gas and Oil Company, 2S0 

Ancient Order of Hibernians, 420 ^ 

Andrews, Claude Y., 50;i 

Andrews, Ellis H., 524 

An extraordinary "swap," 391 

Anson, ISl 

Area of the county, 1 

Arniitagc, .John t', 582 

Associate .iudges, 320, 323 

Atkinson, Hattie I., 751 

Atkinson, Orie C, 751 

Augur, William 11., .522 

Bailey, Walter C, 549 

Bair, George, 591 

Bair, .lames S., 591 

Baker, Lewis, 49S 

Baldwin, Charles P., 728 

Baldwin. .John A., 724 

Baldwin, Verne E., 720 

Balsbaugh, Walter, 681 

Banking institutions, 268 

Bappert, Michael, 489 

Baptists, 355 

Battleground Memorial Association, 84 

Battle of the Mississinewa, 82 

Battle of Tippecanoe, 81 

Bar Association, 328 

Bargerhnflf, Benjiimin F., 777 

Barnhisel, Noah B., 694 

Barron. John C, 742 

Bear storv, 95 

Bearss, A'lbert C, 512 

Bearss, D.aniel R., 158, 511 

Bearss, Frank W., 519 

Bench and bar, 310 

Benevolent and Protective Order of lOlks, 

Bennett 's Switch, 181 
Eerger, Aaron S., 788 
Berger, Henry, 787 
Betzner, Anna M. K.. 574 
Bet7ner Brothers, 526 
Betzner, Louis F., 526 
Betzner, Louis, 72S 
"Big Reserve," 121, 386 
Binkerd, .James P.. 624 
Birmingham, 181 
Black. Charles H., 016 
Blackburn, Daniel F., 723 
Blair, James, 463 
Blair, James J„ 802' 
Blair, Lvdia M., 404 
Bodurtha, Arthur L.. 104. 830 
Bond Family. 651 
Bond, Charles, 068 
Bond, lona, 6.53 
Bond, .Jesse, 667 
Bond, Walter S., 653 
Bonded delit of the county, 267 
Boone, .John, 678 
Boone. William G., 400 
Booth. John, 800 
Bouslog, Rawley H., 815 
Bowlanil, T)avid A., 680 
Bread line, showing work of the .Vsso- 

eiated Charities at time of great flood 

in March. 1913 (view), 373 
Broadway in the sixties (view), 104 
Brower, Isaiah C. 609 
Brownell, 182 
Brownell, Charles H.. 469 
Hundy, Wni. F., 717 
Munker Hill, 142, 182 
Hunker Hill Light Guards, 238 
Burke, Michael, 5S4 
Husaco, 184 
Musby, Thomas M., 784 



Butlev Township, loi-atioii, 11."; pic- 
turesque scenery, 114; first white man, 
115; first settlers, 115; early indus- 
tries. 116; first white child liorn in, 
117; organized, 117; first school, 117; 
schools, 117; railroads, 118; cemeteries, 

Butler, Frank C, 555 

Butt, Douglas M., 514 

Butt, Elias, 472 

Butt, Heury K., 692 

Butt, Samuel W., 691 

Canal era, 242 

Capital, 85 

Carl. Omer l'., 657 

Carter, Charles, 718 

Carter, Phineas B., 749 

Cary, 184 

Casper, Jacob, 619 

Catholics, 344 

Catholic societies, 426 

Cemeteries, 376 

Chamberlain, George R.. 506 

Charities, 370 

Charters, Charles M., 532 

Charters. David, 531 

Charters, Samuel M., 532 

Charters. William J., 531 

Chesapeake & Ohio Railroad, 118, 128, 
131, 139, 151, 258 

Chicago, Indiana & Kastern Railroad, 

Chili, 145, 184 

' ' Chipanue War, ' ' 205 

Christians or Disciples, 360 

Christian Scientists, 369 

Chronology, 430 

Church history, 344 

Church of God, 368 

Church of the Brethren. 358 

Circuit judges, 322 

Citizens' Bank of Macy. 271 

Citizens Gas and Pi].e Line ('iinii)an\, 

Citi7ens' National Bank of Pern. 269 

City of Peru, 153 

City Park, 172 

Civil War, 206 

Clark, Eugene M., 634 

Clark, Gen. George Rogers, 71 

Clay Township, location, 118; last in the 
county to be settled, 118; first white 
man, 118; settlers, 118; first election, 
119; early industries. 119; first school, 
120; schools, 120; railroads, 120 

Cleland, A. P., 740 

"Cliffs," 114 

Cole, Albert, 159, 774 

Cole, Charles A., 827 

Cole, James O., 775 

Cole, Richard H.. 797 

Concrete bridge over Wabash River, Peru 

(view), 268 
Condo, Daniel W., 559 
Conflicting claims of English and French, 

Congregationalists, 367 
Congressional school fund. 292 
Conn, Milo P., 658 
Conner, Joseph R., 750 
Conradt, Godlove, 487 
Converse, 185 
Cory, Charles E., 787 
Costin, Jlichael P., 570 
Coucher. James M., 690 
Country doctor, 332 
County line wedding, 130 
County poor asylum, 370 
County seat, 153 
County seminaries, 294 
County superintendents, 297 
Courter, 188 
Courthouse. 100 
Courthouse fire, 313 
Court of Common Pleas, 321 
Courts, 310 
Cox. Jabe?. T., 813 
Craig, Jasper J., 693 
Creeks, 2 

Crop statistics, 273 
Crouder, William F., 040 
Crnme. Pliny M., 524 
Cunningham, Jacob A., 622 

Daughters of the Revolution, 427 
Davis. John C 507 
Davis, John H., 770 
Davis, John W., 733 
Davis, Wm. Edward, 767 
Deedsville, 14S. 188 
Deer Creek Township, location, 121; 

earliest settlers, 121 ; early industries, 

122; first school in, 123; schools, 123; 

railroads, 123; first churches, 123; 

cemeteries, 377 
Denuith, William, 739 
Denver, 188 
Denver College, 296 
DeWald, John L., 761 
Dice, John H., 649 
Dingman, Peter, 476 
Disastrous fires, 395 
Distribution of school funds, 297 
Dnan, Alva, 721 
Douglass, Milton, 808 
Douglass, Seymour A., 809 
Doyle, 189 
Drainage, 2lil 
Dukes. Aaron N., 494 
Dukes, Elberf J., 495 
Dunkards, 358 
Dunn. Timotliy E., 578 


Eagle, Ilpiiry A., 566 

Earliest niaiuifai'tories in Miami County, 

Early atturneys, 324 
Early explorers, 86 

Early exiilorations in the New World, 67 
Early militia system, 204 
Early prices and wages, 389 
Farly trailiers, 293 
EdMcatioiial development, 291 
Edwards, Kicliard A., 563 
Eel River Ifoad, 257 
ElliLger, R. P., 328 
Eighth Infantry, 210 
Eitliith jtidieial district, 311 
Eighty seventh Infantry, 221 
Eikenlierry. B. F., 544 
Eikenlierry, George, 613 
Fikenberry, Levi I., 613 
Eikenlierry, William M., 804 
Elp'trie lighting plant. 170 
Electric lines, 261 
Eleventh Infantrv, 210 
Ellis, E. A., 707 
Engel, Henry, 593 
Episcopal Chtirch, 364 
Erie Township, location, 123; smallest in 

county, 123: area, 123; settlers, 124; 

early industries, 125; churches, 125: 

railroads. 125; schools, 125; cemeteries, 

Estimated value of all the school property 

in the county, 296 
Everts, Gustavus, 311 

Falk, .Fulius, 539 
Falk, Mos.s, 538 
Farmers' State Bank of Bunker Hill, 

Farmers' Bank of Converse, 271 
Farmers ' Bank of Denver, 272 
Father liarlin, 344 
Father Rivet. 291 
Faust, Joseph A., 520 
Fidler, .lohn H., 470 
Fifth street looking east from Broadway, 

boats landing on courthouse lawn 

(view), 403 
Fifty-first Infantry, 219 
Finance and industry, 267 
Fires, 395 

Fire Department of Peru, 166 
First county .iail, 106 
First courts. 312 

First election for county ofTicers, 100 
First exclusive high school luiilding, 296 
First flag in Miami County, 383 
First gas well, 12 

First great flood of Miami County, 399 
First highways, 241 
First .jurors, 99 
First missionaries, 344 
First National Bank of Peru, 268 

Fiist physician in Miami County, 333 

I'iist printing press in Miami County, 

First railroad in the United States, 253 

First regular school, 291 

First session of the circuit court, 311 

First settlers, 88 

I'irst telejihone exchange, 279 

First train to arrive at Peru, 259 

Fisher Family, 599 

Fisher, Frank, 590 

Fisher, Henry, 600 

Fisher, Isaac, G53 

Fisher, Joseph, 597 

Fisher, Otto L., 462 

Fisher, Peter, 599 

Fife, Charles F., 603 

Five Corners. 190 

Floods, 399 

Florence, 190 

Foote, Carter, 520 

Foote, Charles, 520 

Foote. Jesse, 520 

Formation of the first two civil town- 
ships, 109 

' ' I'ort Wayne, ' ' 76 

Fort Wayne & Northern Indiana Traction 
Company, 139, 262 

Fortieth Infantry, 218 

Forty-sixth Infantry, 219 

Founder of the City of Peru, 156 

Fourteenth Battery, 232 

Fraternal Order of Eagles, 425 

Fraternities, 416 

French and Indian War, 70 

French claims, 67 

Friends or Quakers, 363 

Frontier doctor, 331 

Fulwiler, James B., 159, 441 

Fulwiler, Louis B., 442 

Funeral oration over Francis Godfrey, 

Gahs, Charles V., 771 

Gallahan, Albert Q., 581 

Gallahan, Schu.vler W., 820 

Garritson, Margaret, 738 

Garritson, Read S., 738 

Gas works, 169 

Geology of county, 3 

German Baptists or Dunkards, 358 

German Evangelical Association, 366 

Germann, Gustave A., 454 

Gerhart, Frederick, 713 

Gilead, 138, 190 

Ginney, Timothy M.. 669 

Glassburn, Alfred, 704 

Godfrov, Francis. 33, 36, 164 

Godfro'y, Gabriel, 39 

Godfroy, Gabriel (portrait), 39 

Godfrov, Jacques. 33 

Graft Familv. 614 

Graft. Lerov. 615 

Graham. John A., 299, 828 



Graham, Ira, 673 

Grand Army of the Republic, 423 

Grandview, 191 

Graves, Clement, 778 

Great flood of March, 1913, 401 

Green, Burton, 748 

Grimes. Harrison, 551 

Grimes, Louise il., 552 

Grimes, William. 551 

Griswold, Edward H.. 548 

Guendling, John H., 553 

Gnstin, William H.. 6.S2 

Gwinn, Elmer E., 581 

Gysin, J. Frank. 490 

Haag, Charles C, 776 

Haas, Homer C, 547 

Hacklev. Frederick S., 796 

Hackle'y, Lavant E., 796 

Hall, Clarence N., 544 

Hall, Hal L., 812 

Hall, Joseph, 803 _ _ 

Harmar, General, 76 

Harris, Charles C, 760 

jlarrison, Benton. 586 

Harrison, Reuben C, 586 

Harrison. General William H., 77 

Harrison Township, location, 126; set- 
tlers, 126; organized, 127; first 
churches, 127; early industries, 127: 
first school, 127; schools, 127; rail- 
roads, 128; cemeteries, 378 

Harter, Daniel, 523 

Harter, Delliert D.. 523 

Hattery, James E., 762 

Helm, Charles J., 484 

Helm, John H., 483 

Henton, Dr. Benjamin, 333 

Hensler, Moses D., 771 

Herrell. Absalom, 765 

Herrell, Beeeher, 641 

Hiner, John, 479 

Hiner, John M.. 479 

Historic floods. 399 

Hite. John C, 496 

Hockman, Solomon, 644 

Hoffman, Lorenzo. 792 

Holman, Joseph, 153 

Holman, Omer. 827 

Holman Purchase, 153 

Home Toleiihone Company, 282 

Hood, John T., 596 

Hood, Martha A., 597 

Hood, William N., 156, 826 

Hoover, Newton, 641 

Hooversburg. 191 

Horan, Michael, 445 

"Hospital Hill," 375 

Hostetler. Frank, 783 

Howes. John Q. A., 659 

Hughes. Charles R., 561 

Hurst. Hurd J., 504 

Hurst. James W., 826 

hidings. Richanl S.. 665 

Improved Order of Red Men, 425 

Improvement and Park Association, 17"J 

Increase in population, 429 

Increase in wealth, 430 

Independent Order of Foresters, 426 

Independent Order of Odd Fellows, 419 

Indians. 20 

Indian chiefs. 28 

Indian traders. 86 

Indian treaties, 41 

Indian villages, 23, 25 

Indiana admitteil to Union, 85 

"Indiana Ap]iian Way,"' 249 

Indiana Legion. 234 

Indiana Manufacturing Company, 277 

Indiana medical registration law. 342 

Indiana National Guard. 238 

Indiana Union Traction Company. 139, 

Indinnapolis, 85 

Indianapolis Northern Traction Com- 
pany, 262 

Indianajiolis. Peru & Chicago Railroad, 

Industries outside Peru. 288 

Internal improvements, 241 

Irwin, David, 580 

Irwin. David & Co., 580 

Isler, Frank F., 637 

Itinerant Methodist ministers, 346 

Jackson. Marshall. 656 

Jackson Township, location, 128; area, 
128; settlers. 129; organized, 129; first 
election, 130; county line wedding, 
130; churches. 130; schools, 131; rail- 
roads, 131; cemeteries, 378 

Jefl'erson Township, established. 132; 
area, 132; location, 132; first to be 
settled by white men, 132; settlers, 
132; early industries. 133; first death, 
134; first regular school house, 134; 
schools. 134; railroads. 135; first 
churches, 135; cemeteries, 378 

Jenkins, Benjamin F., 677 

Judges, 311 

Kagv. Vites E., 535 
Kalbfleisch, A. H.. 530 
Kendall, Alvin, 805 
Kepner. Amos A., 716 
Kercher, Charles H., 683 
Kessler, Ira A., 745 
Keyes, Isaac, 568 
Keves, Thomas, 568 
Keyes, Thomas A.. 568 
King. Daniel. 560 
King. Noah W.. 810 
Knauff, Henry, 760 
Knights of Columbus. 426 
Knights of the Maccabees. 426 
Knights of Pythias, 422 



KiHJX, .I(jlin. "Ill 
Kottennaii, Tiuiiiaii, 759 
Kraiis, Miltou, S13 
KriMitzer, John J.. 446 
Kurt?, Andrew J., 7.'il 

Ladies of the Maccabees, 4l'() 

La Fontaine, Francis, 32 

Lake Krie & Westarn Railroad, 123, 

135, 139, 142, 148, 254 
Landrnin, Caswell 11., 710 
Larimer. James, S06 
Lavengood, Jacob S., 675 
Lawyers, 323 
Laving cornerstone of new courthouse, 

Leedv, George E., 747 
Leouda, 192 
Lewis, Henry, 607 
Licensed physicians of Miami County, 

Litigation regarding new courthouse, 102 
Little Turtle, 28, 78 
List of county officers, 433 
List of old-time doctors, 340 
Liston, Dr. James T., 333 
Live stock, 274 
Location, 1 

Location of seat of .iustice, 98 
Lockridge, Brenton W., 583 
T-ockridge, Earle B., 5S4 
Lockwood, George Browning, 306 
Long. Abigail, 567 
Long, Charles M., 566 
Long, Charles W., 606 
Long, .lames A., 662 
Long, Michael F., 485 
Long, William H., 654 
Loree, 192 

Loveland, Ebenezer P.. 450 
Loveland, Hood P., 452 
Loveland, Tfobert J., 453 
Loyal Order of Moose, 426 
Lucas, William L., 676 
Lutheran parochial school 298 
Lutherans, 365 
Lutz, William C, 763 
Lynch, Otho R., 795 

Macy, 113, 193 

Macy Fair Association, 410 

Macv, Oliver H. P., 129 

Malott. Richard, 674 

Malsbury, Laughlin O'N., 602 

Jfanufacturing, 275 

Manufacturing statistics of Peru, 2S4 

Masonic Fraternity, 416 

Maus Family, 612 

Mans, .losiah, 613 

Mayors of Peru, 177 

McCaffrev, Hugh, 817 

McCarthy, John S., 540 

McCaitliV, Jud R., 504 

Mi-Conuell, Clarke 11., 647 

ilcCoimell Family, 647 

McConnell, William E., 648 

Mcllanicls, William, 807 

MrKlhenv. Kranklin K., 468 

McLirawsville, 12S, 192 

McGregor, William A., 162 

McKillip, David, 757 

Meilical jirofession, 331 

^lelcher. Solomon A., 577 

Meiinonites, 35!) 

Mercer, William S., 305 

Methodists, 345 

Mexico. 194 

Mexico and Denver Railroad, 135 

Miamis, 20 

Miami, 195 

Miami chiefs, 28 

Miami Club, 415 

Miami County Agricultural Association, 

Miami County Agricultural Society, 409 
Miami County Bank, 271 
Miami County Bar Association, 328 
Miami County Courthouse (view), 101 
Miami County Driving Park and Agri- 
cultural Society, 410 
.Miami County Jail (view), 107 
Miami County Medical Society, 341 
"Miami County Sentinel." 299 
Miami County Workingmen's Institute. 

Mianiisport, 15.'i 
Miller, Edward H., 493 
Miller, Edward L., 819 
Miller Family, 491 
Miller, George C, 473 
Miller, G. Lee. 486 
:\riller, J, H., 536 
Miller, James T., 491 
Miller, John. 274 
Miller, John C, 460 
Miller, John L., 703 
Miller, John W., 492 
Miller, Joseph E., 595 
Miller. Levi, .536 
Miller, Philij), 605 
Miller, Robert, 460 
Miller, W. P., 822 
Mills, Eugene. 742 
Mills. Josejih S., 648 
Militia companies, 238 
Military history, 204 
Minute men, 224 
Mitchell, Elmer E., 576 
Miscellaneous enlistments, 233 
Miscellaneous facts regarding Peru, 177 
Miscellaneous history, 383 
Miscellaneous societies, 415 
Missionaries, 86 

Mississinewa battle ground as a 
park, 83 



Mississinewa river, 2, 114 
Model court houses, 106 
Monday Xight Literary Club. 413 
Mound Builders, 15 
ilouuds of the United States, 17 
Mowlray. William E., 328. 780 
Muniaugh, Jesse, 645 
Murden, George L., 589 
!Murden. Jesse L., 589 

iS'ash, Benoma. 517 

Nash, Jessie F., 518 

iSational Tile Company, 147 

Natural gas era, 7, 145, 279 

Natural gas of the county, 11 

Nead. 196 

Nelp. Louis, 515 

Nelson, Susan, killing of, 317 

Newell, Jay W., 682 

New court house, 101 

New jail, 106 

New Light Christians, 243 

New Lights, 361 

Newman FamUy. 532 

Newman, Medford Kyle, 533 

Newman, Samuel Irvin, 601 

Newspapers, 182 

Niconza, 196 

Ninth street bridge, Anderson, flood of 
1913 (view), 331 

Nineteenth Infantry, 291 

Ninetieth Infantry^ 222 

Ninety-ninth Infantry, 222 

North Anderson Driving Park Associa- 
tion. 262 

North Broadway, Peru, March 25, 1913. 
Elks home on the right. Masonic tem- 
ple behind street car (view), 401 

North Grove, 128, 197 

Northwest Territory, 29 

Northwest Territory divided. 30 

Nyberg Automobile Works. 150 

Oakdale, 166 

Oakdale Improvement Compauv, 166, 283 

Official roster, 433 

Oil field, 285 

Oil first struck, 286 

Oldest banking house in Miami county, 

Old court house (view), 104 
' ' Old Folks ' and Orphan Children 's 

Home," 372 
Old Holman residence (view), 155 
Old tow-path on the Wabash & Erie 

Canal (view), 247 
Old Sentinel office, southwest corner of 

Main and Broadway, 1867 (view). 300 
Old Settlers ' Afsociations, 411 
"Old Squirrelly." 140 
Old Strawtown road, 241 
On the Eel River near Chili (view), 252 

One Hundred Days' Men, 228 

One Hundred and Ninth Infantry, 224 

One Hundred and Twenty-seventh In- 
fantry, 226 

One hundred and Twenty-eighth In- 
fantry, 227 

One Hundred and Thirtieth Infantry, 

One Hundred and Thirty-fourth Infantry, 

One Hundred and Thirty-eighth In- 
fantry, 228 

One Hundred and Thirty-ninth Infantry, 

One Hundred and Forty-second Infantry, 

One Hundred and Fiftv-first Infantrv, 

One Hundred and Fifty-fifth Infantry. 

Order of the World, 426 

Organization of county, 96 

Other newspapers, 304 

Overman. Thomas C, 709 

Panhandle Railroad 120. 128, 131. 142, 

Parent-Teacher Club, 414 

Parkhurst, John W., 527 

Passage. Dr. Henry V., 334 

Pathfinders, 426 

Patten, John C, 685 

Patten. Lucinda, 685 

Paw Paw, 197 

Pennsylvania Lines, 256 

People's Oil and Gas Company, 13 

Peoria. 118, 198 

Perry Township, location, 135; area, 135; 
settler. 136; early births and deaths, 
137; early industries, 138; first 
churches, 138; first school house, 138; 
schools, 138; railroads, 138; cemeteries, 

Perrysburg, 198 

Peru Township, location, 138; organized, 
139; area, 139; railroads, 139; first 
school, 139; schools, 139; cemeteries. 

Peru, county seat, 153 ; early settlers, 
154; founder of, 156; pioneers, 156: 
laid out. 157; named, 160; first build- 
ing on original plat, 160; incorporated 
as a town, 160; first town election. 
162; first mayor, 162; .early town 
records, 162; incorporated as a city, 
163; addition to, 164; fire depart- 
ment. 166; first paid fire depart- 
ment, 167; water works, 167; gas 
works, 169; first electric lights. 170; 
parks, 172; municipal im]>roven'ents, 
173; postoffice, 174; finances, 175; 
police force. 177; public school build- 



ings, 177; population, 177; mayors, 
177; miscellaneous facts regarding. 
177; first train to arrive in, 2n9; 
banks, 268; first foundry in, 27o ; 
manufactories, 275; railroad shops. 
275; first telephone exchange. 279; 
natural gas companies, 280; manufac- 
turing statistics. 284; first oil wells. 
28fi; schools, 295; newspapers, 299; 
pul'lic library, .SOG; clubs, 412 

Peru & Detroit Railroad, 257 

Peru A: Iniliana|)olis Kailroad Company. 

Peru Associated Charities, 372 

Peru Basket Factory, 278 

"Peru Blues." 204" 

Peru Canning Company, 282 

Pern Chatau<|ua Literary and Scientific 
Circle, 412 

Peru Choral I'nion. 415 

Peru Collegiate Institute, 295 

Peru Commercial Club, 171. 284 

Peru Country Club. 414 

Pern Daily Chronicle. SO.'? 

Peru Drama League. 413 

Peru Driving Park and Fair Associa- 
tion, 410 

Peru Evening Journal. .302 

Peru Forester, 299 

Peru Gazette, 299 

Peru Gazette-Peru Democrat. 299 

Peru Gravs, 238 

Peru Herald, 299 

Peru High School (view), 29M 

Peru Light and Power Company, 17(1 

Peru Literary Club, 413 

Peru Lyceum", 306, 409 

Pern Morning Journal, 303 

Peru Mothers' Club. 414 

Peru Musical Association, 415 

Peru Natural Gas and Fuel Company, 12, 

Peru Observer. 299 

Peru Public Library (view), 307 

Peru Ke.iding Club." 412 

Peru, 302 

Peru Trust Comnany, 269 

Peru Woolen Mills. 275 

Peru Y. M. C. A. (view), 428 

Peters. John B., 753 

Petition to the president, 386 

Pettysville. 198 

Phel'ps. Albert J., 695 

Phelps. Caroline C. 701 

Phelps. Frank C, 611 

Phel|)s. George B.. 764 

Phelps. Hal C, 5.34 

Phelps, Thomas W., 701 
I'hilapv, .lohn B., 576 

Phillcliaum, William L.. 448 

Philomathean Chautauqua Circle. 415 

Physical features, 1 

I'hysicians, 331 

Pierceburg, 199 

"Pillared Rocks," 4, 114 

Pioneer amusements, 94 

Pioneer life and customs. 89 

Pioneer school house, 292 

Pipe Creek Township, location, 139; 

area, 139; first white settlers, 140; 

early industries, 141 ; first churches, 

141; first school, 141; schools, 142; 

railroads, 142; cemeteries, 381 
Place, Willard B.. (>m 
Plotner. Harlen E., 663 
Political meetings, 393 
Pontiae, 70 
Pontine 's war, 71 
Population, 429 
Po]nilation of Peru, 177 
Portraits, Gabriel Godfrey, 40 
PostoHice, Peru, 174 
Postoflices in Miami county, 203 
Pottawatoniis, 24 
Presbyterians, 352 
Press," the, 298 
Probate court, 321 
Progressive Brethren, 358 
Prominent law cases, 329 
Prosecuting attorneys, 323 
I'ublie buildings, 100 
Public finances, 267 
Public libraries, 306 
Puterbaugh, Eli, 573 
Puterbaugh, Moses, 573 

Queer real estate, 392 
Quinn, Robert H., 734 

Baber, Samuel, 587 

Raber, Solomon D., 587 

Railroad era, 253 

Ramsey, Albion S., 655 

Ray burn. James W., 769 

Ream, Fdward B., 516 

Ream. Fred S., 516 

Reasoner, Ethan T., 818 

Regular Array and Navy, 239 

Report of the state bureau of inspection, 

Resler, Joseph L., 768 

Reyburn, William M., 823 

Reynolds, George W., 466 

Reynolds, Mary A., 466 

Rhein, William L., 618 

Rhodes. David E., 575 

Rhodes. Thomas J., .594 

Richardville. Jean Baptiste, 23, 29, 153 

Richer, John, 628 

Richer. Joseph, 629 

Richland Township, location, 142; area, 
142; first actual .settler, 143; settlers, 
143; early industries, 143; first 
churches, 144; first school house, 144; 



schools, 145; railroads, 145; ceme- 
teries, 381 

Riiienour, David, 569 

Kidenour David C, 570 

Ridgeview, 199 

Rivers, 1 

River navigation, 242 

Roberts, Frederick M., 661 

Robins, Ezekiel V., 758 

Roll of honor, 234 

Rose, Henry, 670 

Roval Arcanum, 426 

Rimnells' mill, 122 

Rutherford, Dr. C. F., 334 

Runyan, Britton L., 478 

Runyan, Richard B., 478 

St. Charles Catholic school, 298 
St. Clair, General Arthur, 76 
Saudifur, Noah A., 699 
Santa Fe, 118, 199 

Scene on the Mississinewa (view), 114 
Schedule of treaty grants, 47 
Scheriuerhorn, Mrs. E. L., 63 
See. Sylvanus, 744 
Seidner, Alvin, 754 
Seitner. Ira, 684 
Seitner, Reuben, 684 
Senger, Fred W., 554 
Settlement, 86 

Seventh Day Adventists, 367 
Seventeenth Infantry, 212 
Seventy-third Infantry, 220 
Shanks, Stephen S., 311 
Sharp, Charles, 706 
Sharp, Samuel M., 704 
She-po-con-ah, 33, 56 
Shinn, Edward D., 627 
Shirk Family, 541 
Shirk, Elbert W., 543 
Shirk, Joseph H., 543 
Shively, LeRoy A., 818 
Shirk, Milton, 542 
Shrock, Joseph, 462 
Shrock, Stella, 463 
Simons, Charles E., 660 
Simons, William, 660 
Sims, William, 638 
Sixteenth Infantry, 211 
Sloeum, Frances, 52 
Slocum monument, 65 
Smith, George, 618 
Smith, James H., 690 
Smith, John W., 689 
Smith, J. J., 708 
Smith, Marshall, 702 
Smith, Marshall, 821 
Smith, S. S., 687 
Snowberger, Levi, 756 
Snow Hill, 199 

Social and Literary Clubs, 412 
Social organization of the Indian tribes, 

Societies and fraternities, 409 

Sollitt, Elmer A., 578 

SoUitt, John B., 578 

Sollitt, Raliih V., 578 

Some prominent citizens, 392 

Sommer, John H., 634 

South Peru, 200 

Spanish-American War, 235 

Spanish claims, 68 

Spaulding, Frank, 802 

Speck, Julius T., 665 

Spooner, Jared, 334, 535 

Spooner, John P., 536 

Springer, Eli J., 671 

Sproal, SOas J., 698 

Starkey, James E., 743 

Statistical Review, 429 

Steamboat navigation on the Wabash 

Stevens, Carleton C, 517 
Stevens, Jesse T., 517 
Stineman, Peter C, 679 
Stitt, David, 711 
Stitt, Leonard G., 768 
Stockdale, 200 
Stock raising industry, 274 
Stormy summer, 398 
Story of Frances Slocum, 52 
Stowman, Walter W., 528 
Stranger 's grave, the, 390 
Street Scene in Macy (view), 193 
Stringtown, 201 
Struble, Phillip, 466 
Stutesnian, Frank M., 481 
Stutesman, James M., 481 
Sullivan, Florence, 790 
Sullivan, Theodore J., 501 
Sutton, Ebenezer H., 755 
Sutton, Eddie B., 756 
Sutton, William A., 623 
Swafiford, John W., 616 
"Swamp angelK," 149 
Swigert, Joel, 621 
Swindler, Jorden, 592 

Table showing number of miles of pub 

lie ditch in each township, 265 
Tecuuiseh, 79 
Temperance, 394 
Teter, Jacob F., 715 
The Swings, 88 
Theobald, Jacob, 502 
The Old Mexico Mill (view), 144 
The Pillared Rocks (view), 5 
The Prophet, 80 

"The White Rose of Miami," 63 
Thirteenth Infantry, 208 
Thirty-fourth Infantry, 215 
Thirty-ninth Infantry, 216 
Tile drains, 266 
Tillett, Joseph N., 443 
"Tomahawk Right," 95 
Tiimbaugh, George W., 696 


Tuiiiov, John, 45(i 

Towns :iii(l villages, 179 

Towns that aiv ami have lieen, 179 

Tdwiisliip history, 109 

Trading posts, 87 

Treaties, 41 

Treaty of Greenville. 77 

Trilie of Ben Hur, 42(i 

Trip]ieer, Benjamin, 598 

Trip|ieer, Claude, ti20 

Tudor, Averv P.. 779 

Twelfth Infantry, 210 

Twentieth Infantry, :;13 

Twenty-ninth Infantry, 214 

I'nger, .John F., 811 

Union City, 201 

Union Township, location, 145; area, 
14.5; settlers, 146; early industries, 
147; lirst election, 147; first churches, 
148; first "school house, 14S; schools, 
14.S; railroads. 148; cemeteries, 382 

United Brethren. 362 

U. 8. Postoffiee, Peru (view), 175 

Union Traction Company, 151 

Universalists. 368 

Urliaria. 201 

Value of taxable property, 430 

Vaii.lalia Railroad, 145 

Vandalia Kailroad System, 135 

Views — The Pillared Rocks, 5; Miami 
County Court House, 101; Old Court 
House, 102; Miami County .Tail, 107; 
Scene on the Mississinewa, 114; The 
Old Mexico Mill, 144; Old Holman 
Residence, 155; Broadway in the Six- 
ties, 164; Water Works Pumping Sta- 
tion, 168; U. S. Postoflice, Peru, 175; 
Street Scene in ilacy, 193; Old Tow- 
Path on the Wabash & Erie Canal, 
247; On the Eel River Near Chili, 
252; Concrete Bridge Over Wabash 
River, Peru, 268; Peru High School, 
293; Old Sentinel Otfice, Southwest 
Corner of Main and Broadway, 1867, 
300; Peru Public Library, 307"; Bread 
Line, Showing Work of the Asso- 
ciated Charities at Time of Great 
Flood, March, 1913, 373; North 
Broadway, Peru, March 25, 1913. Elks 
Home on the Right. Masonic Temple 
Behind Street Car. 401 ; Fifth Street 
Looking East from Broadway, Boats 
Landing on Court House Lawn, 403; 
Peru Y. M. C. A., 428 

Vigilance committee, 384 

Vincennes, 69 

Volpert, John W., 630 

Wabash river, 1, 250 

W.abash river bridge case. 314 

Wabash River Traction Company, 261 
Wabash Railway Rniplo.yes Hospital, 375 
Wabash Railroad. 125, "l09, 256 
Wabash & Kv\c Canal, 96, 247 
Wabash, St. Louis & Pacific Railroad 

Company, 256 
Wabash \'alley Trust Company, 270 
Wagoner, 201 

Wagoner, William H., 511 
Waisner, Albert M., 764 
Waisner, Solomon, 737 
Waite, Joseph II., 789 
Wallace, Beniamin E., 785 
Waltz, John 'C, 766 
War of 1812, 81 
War with Mexico, 205 
Ward, Albert, 546 
Ward, Beverly E., 772 
Ward. Charles J., 571 
Ward, Frank E., 686 
Ward, Dr. J. O., 343 
Ward, James O., 773 
Washington Township, location, 148; 

area, 148; settlers, 149; organized, 

150; early churches, 150; schools, 150; 

pioneer teachers, 150; early industries, 

151; railroads, 151; cemeteries, 382 
Waters, Frank, 643 
Water works, 167 

Water works pumping station (view), 168 
Wauiiecong, 120, 202 
Way, George L., 545 
Wayne, Gen. Anthony, 76 
Welch, Berne, 565 
West, Elijah, 510 
West. Harry E., 510 
Wetherow, Edd B., 793 
Wheatville, 202 
Wilkinson, Jacob, 311 
Will of Francis Godfroy, 36 
William Smith's school, 295 
Willson, Edward L., 732 
Wilson, George F., 464 
Wilson, John B., 475 
Wininger, Michael B., 722 
Winona Intenirban Railway, 138, 145, 

Winona Tnterurban Railway Company, 

Wolf, Levi B., 636 
Wooleytown, 202 

Xenia Gas and Oil Company, 12 

Xenia Gas and Pipe Line Company, 280 

Xenia Union Agricultural Society, 409 

Yarian, Wilson, 714 

Years, George M., 798 

Younce, William W., 626 

Young Men's Christian Association, 427 



Z&rtman, Benjamin F., 610 
Zartman, William F., 610 
Zehring, Alfred E., 829 
Zehring, Alonzo M., 646 

Zehring, Benjamin F., 730 
Zehring, Josiah, 741 
Zimmerman, William H., 651 
Zook, Aaron G., 824 

History of Miami County 



Miami County — Location and Boundaries — Lines of Survey — Rivers 
AND Creeks — Underlying Rocks op the Upper Silurian and 
Devonian Periods — Quarries and Lime-kilns — -Along the Missis- 
sinewa — Bog Iron Ore — The Glacial Epoch — The Wabash River 
— Moraines — The Glacial Drift — Economic Geology — Clay's — 
Sand — Gravel — Natural Gas .and Oil — Primitive Forests and 
Their Destruction. 

Miami county is situated north and east of tlie center of the state. 
It is bounded on the north by Pulton county; on the east by Wabash 
and (irniit counties; on the soutli by Howard, and on the west by Cass 
and l''ulton counties. The forty-lirst parallel of latitude crosses the 
northein part, about two miles south of the northern boundary, and the 
elKhty-sixth meridian of longitude lies four miles west of the eastern 
bounihiry. The main l)ody of the county is in the form of a parallelo- 
gram, twelve miles from east to west and thirty miles from north to 
sontli. Measured by the lines of tlic official survey, the northern bound- 
ary is the line separating Congi-essional townsliips 29 and 30, and the 
soutliern boundary is the line separating townships 24 and 25. A strip 
two miles wide along the western l)order of the county lies in range 3, 
east, tlien comes all of range 4 and four miles of range 5, east. At the 
soutlieast corner of this parallelogram lies the civil township of Jackson, 
which extends four miles farther east than the main portion of the 
county. The total area of the county is 384 square miles. 

Flowing westward through the center of the county is the Wabash 
river, wiiicli separates the townships of Erie and Peru on the north from 
Butler, Wasliington and Pipe Creek on the south. Farther north is 
the Eel river, which flows in a southwesterly direction across the county 



throiigli the townships of Richland and Jefferson. The ]\Iississinewa 
river crosses the eastern border about the middle of Butler township and 
flows northwest, emptying into the Wabash a short distance above the 
city of Peru. The first white people to locate along this river pro- 
nounced the name " JIassissineway, " which it is said corresponded 
closely to the Indian pronunciation. The Indian name is "'Na-mah- 
chis-sin-wa, " and means "much fall in the water," which indicates in a 
general way the character of the stream. 

Big Pipe creek flows across the county in a northwesterly direction, 
touching every township south of the Wabash river except Deer Creek, 
and leaves the county in .section 11, township 26, range 3, where it 
enters Cass county. Its principal tributaries are Nigger, Walnut, Honey 
and Turkey creeks. The Nigger rises in Harrison township, near North 
Grove, and empties into Pipe creek in the northeast corner of Clay 
township. Walnut creek rises in section 21, in Harrison township, and 
flows northward until it discharges its waters into Pipe creek near the 
northeast corner of the same township. Honey creek is formed in the 
southeastern part of Harrison township by the east and west forks, then 
flows northward past Amboy and empties into Pipe creek in section 11, 
Jackson township. Turkey creek flows northward through the eastern 
part of Jackson township and finally empties into Pipe creek near the 
eastern line of section 18, township 25, range 6, east. 

Little Pipe creek has its source in Butler town-ship, about halfway 
between Big Pipe creek and the ]\Iississinewa river. Its general course 
is toward the northwest, through the townships of Butler and Wash- 
ington, until it joins the Wabash river near the lower part of the city 
of Peru. 

Through the townships of Harrison, Clay and Deer Creek, in the 
southwestern part of the county, Deer Creek flows in a westerly direction, 
crossing the western boundary line into county three miles north of 
the southwest corner of Miami. Farther south is South Deer creek, and 
near the village of Miami the Middle Fork empties into the main stream. 

North of the Wabash river the principal creeks are Flowers, Weesau 
(also written Wesaw), and Washoni's. The Big and Little Weesau 
creeks drain a large part of Union township and unite near the north- 
west corner of the old Weesau reservation, whence the main stream 
flows southward until it empties into the Eel river a little below the 
town of Denver. Flowers and Washoni's creeks both empty into the 
Eel river near Chili, the former just above and the latter immediately 
below the town. These streams, with a number of smaller ones, provide 
a natural system of drainage, which has been supplemented by a number 


of ditches, so tluit practically all the land iu iliaiui county lias thus 
been brought under cultivation and the soil rendered more productive. 

In geoldgical formation, Miami county belongs to the Upper Silurian 
era, with traces of the Devonian in the western part. The former is 
represented by the Waterlime and Niagara groups and the latter by 
from thirty to thirty-tive feet of Coi'uifurous limestones. The surface 
of the county consists almost entirely of glacial depo.sits — clay, sand and 
gravel — varying in depth from a few feet to 300 feet or more, and the 
few rock exposures are at points where the glacial drift has been washed 
away by the action of the streams. In 1872, E. T. Cox, then state 
geologist, made a report upon the rocks of Miami county, in which he 

"The rocks which were seen, and probably all the rock exposures 
of the county, are of upper Silurian age and seem to be equivalent to 
the silico-magnesia limestone mentioned in the description of Cass 
county, and the overlying limestones; the first mentioned beds much 
more argillaceous than in Cass couutj- — in some places becoming a 
magnesia argillite. ... The highest seam exposed is a limestone 
eiiuivalcnt to tile rock band at Delphi, in Carroll county. A light brown 
colored magnesian limestone, which, from false bedding, is often seen 
with strata dipping at every angle almost to a perpendicular. . . . 
This bed was formerly burned for lime at Dukes" t^uarry, adjoining 
Peru, the county town, but the kiln is not now in use. It is crowded 
with skeletonized fossils, yet still retaining a sufficient modicum of 
animal matter to prevent the lime from fully slackening in the short 
time usually allowed for that purpose by workmen. Hence, this lime is 
not suited for plasterers' use, unless the mortar is permitted to i-emain 
in damp vats for several months before being spread upon the walls of 
the houses. This is too slow a process for our fast age, yet the Roman 
architect, who built for ages, would use only mortar which had been 
prepared for a year or more before it would be needed by the artificer." 

At Dukes' (juarry a surface opening was made into the beds of the 
"silico-magnesia" limestone mentioned by Cox, but the stone was not 
suitable foi- building purposes. The beds of light brown colored lime- 
stone, referred to in the report, are generally local and of small extent. 
About a mile north of Dukes' quarry, on the farm of E. H. Shirk, an 
outcrop was formerly worked, and it is probat)le that the stone exists 
through the entire intervening area between the exposure on the Shirk 
farm and Dukes' quarry. 

In the lower beds along the Wabash river, at Lyde's quarry, two 
and a half miles west of Peru, Cox found a deposit "distinctly laminated, 
the seams being filled with clayey matter and pyrites." Upon examina- 


tion he decided that this stone might be used for foundations, oi- where 
protected from the weather, but upon exposure the clay and' pyrite 
matter would decompose and the stone become "shelly." 

Similar beds of stone have been developed at Trippier's quarries, 
two miles east of Peru, on the south side of the Wabash river, and at 
Wallick's mill on Little Pipe creek, near the Lake Erie & Western 
Railroad. State Geologist Thompson, in his survey of 1888, classifies 
the rock exposures at these quarries as Niagara limestone. Concerning 
the lime burned at Trippier's, Cox said: "It is similar if not equal to 
the Delphi lime, slakes perfectly, works 'cool,' bears transportation 
well, makes a strong and almost hydraulic cement, and deserves a more 
extended market." 

Near the mouth of the Mississinewa river there are extensive beds 
of Niagara limestone suitable for building purposes, the outcrop show- 
ing for over a mile. On the same stream, three miles east of Peru, 
are the "Pillared Rocks," interesting alike to the scientist and the lover 
of beautiful and romantic scenery. At this point the river is arrested 
in its northerly course by a solid wall of "cherty, silico-magnesia lime- 
stone" and makes a rather abrupt turn to the westward. The action of 
the rushing water against a stone wall composed of different textures, 
has caused an unequal disintegration of the rocks, carving them into 
pillars, rounded buttresses, alcoves, grottoes and overhanging shelves 
of beautiful and fantastic shapes. Cox says that in 1872 the summit of 
the bluff was covered with cedars. The "Pillared Rocks," with their 
celebrated picnic ground, form one of the beauty spots of Miami count}'. 
Locally, these rocks are known as the "Seven Pillars," but are often 
confused in name, by persons unfamiliar with them, with "The Cliffs" 
farther up the river. 

Farther up the Mississinewa there is a precipice on the north side 
of the stream — part of the elevation known as "The Cliffs" — and at 
this point Cox took the only section in IMiami county in his survey of 
1872. That section was as follows : 

Sandy soil, 4 feet ; white glass and grit stone, 10 feet ; porous lime 
rock, 18 feet; cherty, laminated argillaceous limestone, to river, 35 feet; 
total, 67 feet. 

Concerning the porous limestone here Cox says: "Blocks of large 
size may be obtained, and the unexplored beds, if found sufficientl.v 
compact, will prove valuable for quarry purposes, as well as for 'burn- 
ing.' " At the time Cox made his survey he found that some fine, 
square blocks of stone had been taken from Thomas' (quarry, in the pool 
of the mill dam at Peoria. This stone was quarried at the water's edge, 
below the cherty stratum of the silico-magnesia division, but owing to 


its location was difficult to obtain, so that the quarry could never be 
operated at a profit, though the geologist pronounced it the best stoue 
he had seen in the county. 

The stone for the pilaster coping in the ('atholic church at Peru was 
taken from a quarry near Brouillette's, on the Mississinewa river above 
Peoria, and lias stood exposure to the weather well. In appearance it 
is of a modest, neutral tint, that contrasts harmoniously with the red 
brick walls, and resembles the Delphos limestone, of Ohio. This effect 
has since been destroyed by covering the church walls with stucco work. 

The I'lLi.ARED Rocks 

Cox's prediction tiial the porous liiiifslonc along the Mississinewa 
would ■prove valuable for (|uarry purposes, as well as for burning," 
has not hem rcali/ed, and the reason is explained by Thompson in his 
report on .Miami county in 1888. He found the Niagara limestones of 
the Mississinewa to be dolomitic, "hard and sub-crystalline in structure, 
only fit for foundation work or flagging, and difficult to work." Says 
he: "The Niagara limestones of Miami county do not possess the 
properties of valuable building stone, although they may be profitably 
used for foundations, or other rough work. The Waterlime rocks near 
Peru, however, are much better even for the roughest work, conse(|Uently 


there have been no special efforts made to develop a quarrying industry 
along the Mississinewa river. For the manufacture of lime the Niagara 
limestones furnish excellent material at many points along the Wabash 
and Mississinewa rivers, and several parties have made profitable use 
of the advantages afforded." 

The Waterlime rocks are exposed along the Wabash river for a 
distance of about half a mile above the Lake Erie & Western Railroad 
bridge, and again about a mile west of Peru. Among the quarries 
opened in these outcrops perhaps the most important were the O'Donnell, 
Brownell and Kissell cjuarries, in the order named as one descends the 
river. The ledges or layers range from three to sixteen inches in thick- 
ness and maj^ be quarried in any desirable dimensions. The stone is a 
hydraulic limestone, of fine texture, bluish in color, and is well adapted 
to foundation work, bridge abutments, etc., the thin layers being exten- 
sively used for flagging. 

The only rocks of the Devonian formation that are exposed in the 
county are along Pipe creek from the vicinity of Bunker Hill to the 
county line. North of Bunker Hill, on Big Pipe creek, for a distance of 
about three-fourths of a mile are almost continuous exposures of Cornif- 
erous limestone, the larger proportion of which is a bluish gray lime- 
stone, somewhat crystalline in structure, much of it being well adapted 
to rough masonry, such as foundations, bridge abutments and similar 
work. As a rule the Corniferous limestones of iliami county are too 
cherty and silicious to make good lime, though there are a few localities 
where fairly good lime has been burned from the gray, fossiliferous 
limestones that overlie the cherty deposits. 

In the northern part of the county bog iron ore is found in con- 
siderable quantities at several places. Furnaces were operated along 
the Eel river in early days and an excellent quality of iron was pro- 
duced. The collection of the ore was attended by rather heavy expense, 
however, and with the introduction of improved transportation facilities 
the Eel river furnaces were abandoned, owing to their inability to 
compete with mines more favorably situated. All over the county there 
are traces of iron in combination with the soil and also filtered into the 
limestone rocks. When these rocks become disintegrated and mixed with 
the glacial drift a soil is formed that is not exceeded in fertility any- 
where in the state. (See State Geologist's Report for 1888, p. 177.) 

Probably no phenomena have proven more perplexing to students 
of geology than those which brought about the destruction of vast beds 
of rock and the distribution of their fragmentary remains over large 
areas of territory far from their original location. For illustration: 
The large bowlders found in all parts of Indiana, commonly called 


''nignrerlifads. " are of a grranitoid charactpr. belonging to beds tliat are 
nowhere represented in the state, and must have come from some phiee 
beyond lier boi'ders. \'ai'ious tlieories have been advanced to aecount 
for tliese eondilions, the most prominent of whieh. and the one most 
generally aeeejited by scientists, is the Glacial theory-. The Glacial 
epoch, or Pleistocene ])eriod of geologic time, sometimes called the 
"lee Age." comprises the earliest part of the Qiiai"ternary period. 
During the latter jjart of the Tertiary period, preceding, there was a 
gratlnal lowering of temperature throughout what is now termed the 
north temperate zone, until the entire surface of the earth in that region 
was covered with large liodies of ice called glaciers.' These glaciers 
were formed by pci'iddical oi' intermittent snows. During the periods 
between these I'alls of snow, that whieh Jiad already fallen became so 
compressed by its own weight that the entire mass was in time converted 
into one .solid body. 

The pressure upon the yielding mass of snow imparted motion to 
the trlaciei-, which carried with it rocks, soil and other mineral matter. 
As it moved forward the grinding and equalizing work of the glacier 
ultinuitely wi'ought great changes in the topography and meteorological 
conditions of the earth. Not only were the mountain peaks in the path 
of the glacier woin down and the general leveling of the earth's. surface 
brought about, but also vast quantities of earth and sand were carried 
forward by the streams of wjiter formed by the melting of the ice and 
deposited in the ocean. In this way shores of the continent were pushed 
forward iluring a period of several centuries and the superficial area of 
the land was materially increased. 

As a general rule, the course of the North American glaciers was 
toward the south. One of them extended over Canada and the north- 
eastern part of the United States, reaching from the Atlantic ocean on 
the east to the slopes of the Rocky mountains on the west, and covering 
the entire basin of the Great Lakes. When the ice melted, the rocks 
and other debris carried along by the glacier were left to form what is 
known as the glacial drift, also called till, bowlder clay and older 
diluvium. As the glacier glided slowly along — probably not more than 
one foot per day — the bowlders and other hard ininerals at the bottom, 
pressed downward by the gigantic mass above, left marks or scratches 
on the lied rock, and from these marks or stris the geologist has been 
able to determine with reasonal)le aceuracj- the course of the glacier by 
noting the direction of the striic. Concerning the course of the glacier 
in this state. State Geologist Thompson, in his report for 1888, says: 
"In Indiana the general direction of the glacial movement was a little 
west of south. There are localities in the state where the striae or sand 


marks on the ice-ground rocks run from east to west, and in almost 
every other horizontal direction ; but by careful study these are found 
to be merely local exceptions to the general rule. . . . The glacial 
deposits of Indiana by their conformation, by the materials found in 
their mass and by the stria- underlying them, have come into the state 
from a direction almost north and south." 

The accumulation of earth and stone carried by the glacier was 
sometimes heaped up along the margin, where it formed a ridge or 
deposit called a lateral moraine. When two glaciers came together, the 
deposit formed at the point of conjunction is called a medial moraine. 
The nearly level deposit under the body of the glacier is known as the 
ground moraine and the ridge formed at the farthest point reached by 
the glacier is the terminal moraine. The valley of the Ohio river was 
the terminus of the glacier that once covered Miami county and the 
channel of that stream owes its origin to the melting of the ice and the 
flow of water which always underlies the bed of a glacier. As the 
melting process w^ent on, the terminal margin withdrew to the north- 
ward, and wherever there remained undestroyed rock barriers or dams 
they gave direction to the waters of the terminal moraine. In this way 
the course of the Wabash river was determined, or modified, centuries 
before Columbus discovered the New World. To quote again from 
Thompson : 

"From Wabash to Delphi the Wabash up-lifl (called the Wabash 
Arch) has determined the course of the Wabash river, just as it also 
determined the form of the drift mass immediately south of it. The 
river itself is runuiug along the general line of a wide fracture or 
system of fissures in the Niagara rocks from Wabash to Logansport. 
At the latter place it has cut through a spur of the Devonian formation, 
and at Delphi it curves around the of a curious conical up-lift of 
the Niagara limestone. To my mind it is plain that the river simply 
follows the example of the ice current which went before it plowing out 
the great furrow which we call the Wabash valley. At present evidence 
is wanting to prove any theory as to what particular part of the glacial 
age was devoted to the work of channeling out a groove for Indiana's 
greatest river, but it would appear that this must have been the first 
result of the glacier's contact with the low but compact and stubborn 
knobs of the Wabash Arch. Subsequently, as the ice field grew in 
weight and power it arose and surmounted this barrier, grinding away 
its conical peaks and tearing out of its hollows in many places the non- 
conformable Devonian and Carboniferous rocks." 

In some portions of North America the lateral moraines rise to a 
height of five hundred or even one thousand feet. The terminal moraine 


in uortherii Indiana that marks the southern boundary of the Great 
Lake basin contains several mounds that are from 150 to 200 feet 
in height, and "the existence of a grand moraine lying across central 
Indiana has been fully demonstrated." Along the line of this great 
moraine the contoui- of tile drift mass is found to be comparatively 
regular, the glacial matter having been more uniformly deposited. In 
this territiiry lies Jlianii eouiity. where there is al)undant evidence of 
glacial action, though great local changes have taken place in the surface 
of the drift mass since it was first deposited. Upon the retreat of the 
ice the whole drift area was left bare and desolate, accompanied by an 
arctic teinpei-ature and without either animal or plant life. Rain and 
wind were active forces in leveling or modifying the surface during the 
period that elapsed before the northward migration of plant life began 
to clothe it with a garment of resistance and render it habitable. How 
long that period may have been geologists can only conjecture. It was 
by this method that the surface of iliami county was formed. 

Concerning the depth of the drift in Sliami county, Thompson says: 
"South of the Wabash river the drift varies in depth from nothing to 
one hundred feet or more, though it is only along the streams where it 
has been carried away by the water that it is wholly wanting. At Bunker 
Hill, gas well No. 1, it is 58 feet thick; at Xenia (Converse) it is 50 
feet thick, while at Amboy, midway between the two points, it is 35 
feet thick. The alluvial matter in the Wabash river bottom varies from 
5 to 50 feet in thickness. In gas well No. 2, at Peru, it is 10 feet thick; 
in well No. 1, Northside, it is 36 feet thick, while at the Bearss gas well. 
No. 4, bored on the high lands two miles north of Peru, the drift is 324 
feet thick. It is quite likely that the maximum thickness of the drift 
north of the Wabash river in iliami county will approximate four 
hundred feet, even if it does not exceed that ilepth." 

At widely distant places in the glacial iltil't of the United States 
have been found the remains of prehistoric animals of the IMiocene 
period, but which l)ecame extinct in the Pleistocene, or lee Age. The 
most common of these remains are the bones of the mastodon — so-called 
from the shape of its teeth — an animal closely allied to the elephant of 
modern times. Several times in making excavations in Miami county, a 
few bones of this great monster of a past era have been found, but it 
was not until the fall of 1904 that a complete skeleton was unearthed. 
Some men engaged in digging a ditch about twelve miles north of Peru, 
found a few bones, which were given to Pred Kite, a taxidermist of 
Denver. Jlr. Fite employed some helpers and continued digging in 
the locality until the entire skeleton, with the exception of a few minor 
bones, was found. He then spent some time in cleaning and articulating 


tlie parts of the skeleton, supi)l.viii£r the place of the missing bones with 
wooden substitutes, and in the spring of 1905 his mounted skeleton was 
finished. It stood nine feet high and measured eighteen feet in length, 
the tusks being nine feet long. In hauling the bones from the place 
where they were found to his laboratory two \vagous were used, the 
entire collection weighing over a ton. It was not long after he had the 
skeleton mounted until ]Mr. Fite received several offers for it. He finally 
sold it to a museum in Detroit, Michigan, for .$500. 

The principal elements that go to make up the drift formation in 
Indiana are silica, alumina, lime and iron. Silica is found principally 
in the clays, sands and bowlders; alumina in the clays and bowlders; 
lime in the clays, marls, chalk and the peat-like bog deposits, and the 
iron is abundant in the swamps in the form of bog ore, or in the gravel 
dei^osits. In Miami county some of the drift deposits are of economic or 
commercial importance. Some years ago John E. ililliron, of Denver, 
began a systematic study of the county's mineral resources, especially 
the clay deposits. At several points near Denver he found clay suitable 
for a good article of pottery, and clays adapted to the manufacture of 
tile or brick may be found in nearly all parts of the county. ]\Ir. 
Milliron also found an ochreous kind of i-lay, of fine texture and strongly 
impregnated with iron, that makes a good quality of mineral paint when 
ground and mixed with oil. Paint made from this clay has been used 
at Denver and has been found to possess durability, and it is believed 
that a profitable industry might be built uji in lis manufacture. Four 
miles northwest of Denver, on Weesau creek, there is an extensive 
deposit of clay that burns to a light cream color, stands fire w'ell, does 
not warp to any great extent during the burning process, and could no 
doubt be utilized to advantage in the manufacture of brick, tile and 
pottery. (See State Geologist's Report for 1888, p. 176.) 

Sand in abundance is found along all the creeks and rivers of the 
county, and in lenticular beds at various places in the drift. A large 
portion of the iliami county sand is valuable for building purposes and 
there are deposits that are well adapted for the grinding of glass or for 
molders' use, but these deposits have not been developed along those 
lines. ^lost of the sand used in the Indiana glass factories comes from 
distant points, much of it from outside of the state, and there is no 
question that the development of some of these beds would prove of 
great convenience to the glass manufacturer, as well as a source of 
profit to the owner of the sand-pits. 

In his report for the year 1905, State Geologist Blatchley devoted 
considerable attention to the road-building materials of the various 
counties of the state. He found gnod gravel alnindant near ]\Iaey and 


at some other points in the glacial till plain in the northwestern part 
of the countj-, though most of the gravel in other portions north of the 
Wabash river was found only along the streams. The south half of the 
county, also a till plain, has a sandy clay as the surfaeo soil, with a 
coarse ([uicksand in places that is used for road-building and makes a 
fairly good highway. The Wabash river bluffs, ranging from twenty- 
five to forty feet in height, contain very little gravel, being generally 
composed of clay, but there are good gravel deposits along some of the 
other streams in the southern part of the county, notably at Bunker Hill 
and Amboy. At the latter place the upper deposit of clay has been 
removed along Big Pipe creek and there are half a dozen or more good 
gravel pits. Blatchley also found small gravel deposits at several places 
in the moraine south of the Wabash. From the information at his com- 
mand he expressed the opinion that it would not be necessary to haul 
gravel more than three miles — probably not that far — anywhere in the 
county for the construction of roads. 

Notwithstanding the statements of the state geologist, in the report 
above referred to, it is a well known fact that practically all of the 
Wabash river valley — that is, the river bottom and the bluffs which bound 
it on either side — is underlaid with gravel. These deposits are the most 
extensive, the most important, the most easily accessible and the most 
valuable in the county. In all other portions of the county, the deposits 
are scattered, less valuable, more expensive to develop and more difficult 
to render available for use. In the southern part of the county much of 
the gravel used on the roads is pumped from the bed of Pipe creek, or 
from other beds below the water level. It is of very inferior quality as 
compared with the Wabash valley gravel. 

No account of the geology of the county would be complete without 
some mention of natural gas and oil, both of which have been found 
within tlic county limits. Natural gas is described as "a member of 
the paraffin series (hydrocarbons), a combination of carbon and hydro- 
gen, about sixty per cent, as heavy as air and highly inflammable." It 
is composed of marsh gas, or methane, the gas fields in Ohio and Indiana 
having been formed by the decomijosition of animal matter, while the 
Pennsylvania field is composed of decaying vegetation. The decom- 
position, or chemical change, that generated the gas is believed to have 
taken place at a comparatively low temperature within the porous 
rocks of the Lower Silurian formation, the Trenton limestone especially 
serving as a reservoir for the aeeummulated gas. 

It is quite probable that natural gas was first used in connection 
with the Delphic oracles, about 1,000 B. C, and it has been used for 
centuries by the Chinese in the evaporation of salt water. It was first 


used ill the United States in 1821, when a well one and a half inelies in 
diameter and twenty-seven feet deep was drilled near a "gas spring"" at 
Fredonia, New York, and the gas was iised for lighting the streets of the 
town. In 1838 the presence of gas was observed at Findlay. Ohio, and 
about three years later it was found in a well at Charleston, West 
Virginia. While developing the oil fields of Pennsylvania, in 1860, the 
gas was used vinder the boilers instead of coal, but the first systematic 
use of it as a fuel was at Erie, Penns.vlvania, in 1868. 

Prior to 1884 little was known of the Trenton limestone, except from 
the outcrops in Canada and a few places in the United States. In that 
year gas was struck at Findlay, Ohio, in the Trenton limestone, which 
marked the beginning of an era of great prosperity for that city and 
led to prospecting in Indiana. On March 14, 1886, the first gas well 
in Indiana "blew in" at Portland, Jay county, where the gas was also 
found in the Trenton formation. 

The people of Miami county were among the first in the state to 
undertake an active search for natural gas. Soon after the discovery 
of gas at Portland, the idea became prevalent that gas could be found 
almost anywhere in paying (|uantities by drilling down to the Trenton 
limestone, and prospecting became general throughout the central part 
of the state. The Peru Natural Gas and Fuel Company was incorporated 
on October 25, 1886, "for the purpose of prospecting for natural gas, 
coal, coal oil, or any other valuable mineral." The first gas well was 
drilled in the northern part of the city of Peru, at an altitude of 657 feet 
above the sea level. The following is the record of the strata passed 
through in drilling: 

Alluvium — river drift, 36 feet ; Niagara limestone, 385 feet ; Hudson 
river and Utiea shales, 454 feet ; Trenton limestone. 30 feet ; total 
depth, 905 feet. 

In this well a small quantity of petroleum was found at a depth of 
880 feet, or five feet after the drill first entered the Trenton rock. At 
900 feet a strong vein of salt water was struck, but no gas was found. 
A second well was drilled just south of the city of Peru, but with no 
better results. The third well was on the Y'onee farm, about seven miles 
southeast of Peru, and well No. 4 was on the farm, about three 
miles north of the city. Here the drill went to a depth of 1,041 feet, 
penetrating the Trenton limestone for thirty-one feet, but without find- 
ing gas. 

Xenia (now Converse) was the first point in Miami county to secure 
gas. The Xenia Gas and Oil Company was incorporated on January 4, 
1887, and the first successful gas well in the county was drilled the 


folliiwiiif^ suimiicr. The record below illustrates the eharacter of the 
strata throuy;h whieh the drill passed : 

Soil. 4 feet; gravel, 46 feet; waterlime, 31 feet; Niagara limestone, 
238 feet; Hudson river and Utica shales, 587 feet; Trenton limestone, 
31 feet : total depth, 937 feet. 

Tiie altitude at the surface of the well was 815 feet and the Trenton 
rock was first struck at ninety-one feet below the sea level. A strong 
vein of water was struek in the Niagara limestone, but it was cased off 
and the drilling proceeded. Soon after piercing the Trenton i-ock water 
was reached, and this had the effect of weakening the flow of gas, so that 
the well was never a heavy producer. The second well at Xeuia was a 
strong one, yielding a suflicient quantity of gas to supply the entire 
town. Several strong wells were also found at Aralioy and in the 
immediate vicinity. At Bunker Hill tlie drill went down to a depth of 
1,004 feet, or 12 feet into the Trenton limestone, where salt water was 
struck. This water raised in the bore of the well to within twenty feet 
of the surface and caused the drillers to suspend operations. 

The People's Oil and Gas Company, of Peru, was organized by 
approximately one hundred citizens in the spring of 1897, but was not 
incorporated at the time. The fii-st well was bored on the B. E. Wallace 
farm, just east of the ^lississinewa river. It proved to be a "dry hole," 
but the members of the company did not lose hope and a second well 
was drilled in the northwestern part of Peru, on a tliree-cornered tract 
of land belonging to A. N. Dukes. Trenton rock was struck at a depth 
of 855 feet and on July 19, 1897, the well was yielding about twelve 
barrels of oil daily. The company was then incorporated, the well was 
tubed and pumped and the output was thus increased to 120 barrels 
daily. 'I' wo other wells in the same locality yielded 150 and 175 barrels, 
respect ively. By the close of the year over two hundred wells had been 
drilled. A more complete account of the development of the oil and gas 
fields of the county will be found in the chapter on "Finance and 

When the Hrst white men raiiie U> what is now Miami county they 
found the surface covered with a heavy growth (jf tindjer. The great 
forests contained many beautiful .specimens of walmit, poplar, various 
varieties of oak, ash, maple, hickory and other valuable trees, and there 
were likewise a number of less important species, including sycamore, 
beech, locust, mulberry, wild cherry, elm and willow. At that time the 
soil was of more value for cultivation than the timber. Consequently 
many trees were cut down and burned that, if they were standing today, 
would be worth more than the land upon which they grew. Then no 
tliought of a timber famine ever entered the minds of the pioneers. 


Far away to the westward stretched the boundless forest and to the 
frontiersman it seemed, if he gave it a thought, that there would be 
timber enough to supply the wants of the people for generations to 
come. The ax, the fire-brand and the saw-mill have done their deadly 
work so well that now, though less than a century has passed, the con- 
servation of American forests is an engrossing subject. Possibly much 
of the timber might have been saved, but would the people of the present 
day act differently under the same conditions? Probably not. 



The Mound Builders — Theories Regardixg Their Antiquity — 
Thomas' DmsiON of the United States into Districts — Ch.uj- 
acteristics of Each District — Pew Relics in Miami County — 

The Indians— How Distributed in 1492 — The "Six Nations" 

The ^liAMi Tribe^Habits and Customs — Their Domain — Vil- 
lages IN the Wabash Valley— The Pottawatomi — Character and 
Traditions — Villages — Policies in Dealing with the Indians. 

Before the white man, the Indian ; before tlie Indian, who? The (iiies- 
tion is more easily asked than answered. When the first Europeans came 
to this country they found here a peculiar race of copper-colored people, 
to whom they gave the name of "Indians," but after a time some stu- 
dents of archaeology came to the conclusion that this race had its prede- 
cessors. Who were they? The archaeologist has given them the name of 
"Mound Builders," on account of the great number of mounds or 
earthworks they erected, and which constitute the only data from whidi 
to write their history. During the last century a great deal of dis- 
cussion concerning the character and fate of the Mound Builders has 
been indulged in by antiquarians and archaeologists, but the qu(;stioii 
seems to be no nearer a positive settlement than when it first came up 
for consideration. In 1812 the American Antiquarian Society was or- 
ganized and during the years immediately following made some inves- 
tigations of the prehistoric relics left by the primitive inhabitants. But 
the first work of consequence on American archaeology — "Ancient Mon- 
uments of the Jlississippi Valley" — compiled by E. G. Squier and E. II. 
Davis, did not make its appearance until in 1847. The authors, who had 
made an exhaustive study of the mounds and earthworks in the section 
indicated, advanced the theory that the jMound Builders were a very 
ancient race and that they were in no way related to the Indians found 
here when the continent was discovered by Columbus. Allen Lapham, 
who in 1855 wrote a treatise on the "Antiquities of Wisconsin," also 
held to the great age and separate race theory. 

In fact, most of the earl>- writers on the subject have supported this 



hypothesis, and some have gone so far as to arrange the period of human 
occupancy of the Mississippi valley into four distinct epochs, viz: 
1. The :\Iound Builders; 2. The Villagers; 3. The Fishermen; 4. The In- 
dians. This somewhat fanciful theory presupposes four separate races 
or peoples and is not sustained by any positive evidence. Other writers 
have contended that the early American aborigines were descendants of 
the lost tribes of Israel and efforts have been made to substantiate such 
an assertion. With regard to the :\Iound Builders. Baldwin, in his 
■'Ancient America," says: 

"They were un(iuestionably American aborigines and not immigrants 
from another continent. That appears to me the most reasonable .sug- 
gestion which assumes that the :\Iouud Builders came originally from 
Mexico and Central America. It explains many facts connected with 
their remains. In the Great Valley their most populous settlements were 
at the .south. Coming from Alexico and Central Ainerica, they would 
begin tlieir settlements on the Gulf Coast, and afterward advance grad- 
ually up the river to the Ohio Valley. It seems evident that they came 
by this route, and their reuuiins show that their only connection with 
the coast was at the south. Their settlements did not reach the coast at 
any other point." 

On the other hand, McLean says; "From time immemorial, there 
has been immigration into :\Iexico from the North. One type after 
another has followed. In some cases different branches of the same 
family have successively followed one another. Before the Christian era 
the Nahoa immigration from the North made its appearance. They were 
the founders of the stone works in Northern Jlexico. Certain eminent 
scientists have held that the Nahoas belonged to the race that made the 
mounds of the Ohio and Mississippi valleys. Following this people came 
the Toltecs, and with them the light begins to dawn upon ancient Mexican 
migration. They were cultivated and constituted a liranch of the Nahoa 
family. . . .In the light of modern discovery and scientific investiga- 
tion, we are able to follow the Mound Builders. We first found them in 
Ohio, engaged in tilling the soil and developing a civilization peculiar to 
themselves. Driven from their homes, they sought an asylum in the 
South, and from there they wandered into Mexico, where we begin to 
learn something definite concerning them." 

Here is a fine illustration of "When doctors disagree." Two more 
widely diverse theories than those advanced by Baldwin and McLean 
can hardly be imagined, yet they show the vast amount of speculation 
indulged in by writers upon the subject. There is not, and never has 
been, a unity of opinion regarding the ]\Iound Builders. While the early 
writers classed them as a hypothetical people, supposed to have antedated 


tlic Indian ti-il)t'.s \>y several cciiliii-ics as inlialiitants ol' tlic Oliio and 
Mississippi valleys, the iMouml Hnildrrs arc now regarded "as the ances- 
tors and representatives of the tribes foiiiul in tlie same region hy the 
Spanish. Frerieh and English pioneci-s. " Says Hrinton: 

"The period wiicn the Mound Builders tlourisiu'd has Ix'en differ- 
ently estiniatetl : but there is a growing tendency to reject the assump- 
tion of a very great anti(|uity. There is no good reason for assigning 
any of the remains in the Ohio valley an age antecedent to tiie Christian 
era, and the final destruction of their towns may well have been but 
a few generations before the discovery of the continent hy Columbus. 
Faint traditions of this event were still retained by the tribes who occu- 
pied the region at the advent of the whites. Indeed, some plausible 
attenii)ts have been made to identify their descendants with certain 
e.xisting tribes." 

In the early part of the sixteenth century De Soto and the French 
explorers found in the southern part of the present United States cer- 
tain ti'ibes who were mound builders, their structures differing; but 
slightly in character from those for which great antiquity is claimed. 
The culture of the !\lound Builders was distinctly Indian in character 
and the relics found in many of the so-called ancient mounds differ but 
little from those of known Indian origin. As these facts have been devel- 
oped in the course of investigation, archaeologists have generally come 
to accept the theory that the Mound Builders were nothing more than 
the ancestors of the Indians, and i)roliably not so very remote as for- 
merly believed. 

Cyrus Thomas, of the United States Bureau of Ethnology, who has 
made a careful study of the ancient earthworks of the country, divides 
the mounds of the Uniteil States into eight districts: 

I. The Wisconsin district, which embraces the southern half of Wis- 
consin, the northern portion of Illinois and the northeastern part of 
Iowa. This district is replete with effigy mounds — that is mounds hear- 
ing a resemblance to some beast or bird. These are believed to have 
been copied from some bird or aniuud that served as a totem for the 
tribe, though they may have been objects of veneration or worship. 
Effigy mounds are likewise found in some of the other districts, one of 
the most notable examples of this class being the "Great Serpent" 
mound, of Adams county, Ohio. This mound is located on a narrow- 
ridge, almost surrounded by three streams of water. It is in the form 
of a serpent and is 1,348 feet in length. The opened jaws measure sev- 
enty-five feet across and immediately in front of the mouth is a circidar 
or elliptical inclosure with a heap of stones in the center. The body of 
the serpent is from thirty to fifty feet wide and about eight feet in 


height at tlie highest part. The state of Ohio reeeiitly purchased the 
tract of groimd upon which this ancient work is located and converted 
it into a park, or reserve, in order to protect the mound from the ravages 
of the curiosity hunter. 

2. The Upper Mississippi district, which includes northern and cen- 
tral Illinois, southeastern Iowa and northeastern Missouri. In this dis- 
trict the mounds are generally conical tumuli, located on the ridges of 
the uplands and possess very little that is of interest to the archaeologist. 

3. The Ohio district, which covers the state of Ohio, the eastern part 
of the state of Indiana and the western part of West Virginia. Forti- 
fications and altar mounds constitute the distinguishing features of this 
district, though the ordinary conical tumuli are by no means absent. One 
of the largest known mounds of this character is the famous mound on 
Grave creek, West Virginia, which is about three hundred feet in diame- 
ter at the base and seventy feet high. In the state of Ohio alone about 
thirteen thousand mounds have been found and many of them explored. 

4. The New York district, embracing western New York, the central 
lake region, and a small section of Pennsylvania. In western New 
York there are a number of inclosing walls or fortifications. 

5. The Appalacliian district, which includes western North Carolina, 
eastern Tennessee, southwestern Virginia and southeastern Kentucky. 
In the mounds through this district have been found a large number 
of human skeletons, stone pipes, copper bracelets, mica plates and other 
relics unlike any found in the other districts. 

6. This district includes the middle portion of Mississippi, south- 
eastern ilissouri. northern Arkansas, western Tennessee, western Ken- 
tucky, southern Illinois and the Wabash valley in Indiana. The distin- 
guishing feature of this district is the truncated and terraced pyramid 
mounds, which are found here in larger numbers than in any other part 
of the country. There are also some inclosures resembling fortifications, 
ditches or canals, and pottery and stone coffins have been found in several 
of tlie mounds that have been explored. Near Cahokia, Illinois, is a 
truncated pyramid five hundred by seven hundred feet at the base and 
ninety-seven feet in height. 

7. The lower ilississippi district, which includes the southern half 
of Arkansas, the greater part of Louisiana and tlje southern portion of 
]\Iississippi. It was in this district that De Soto and the French explorers 
above mentioned found, upon their early visits to the region, certain 
Indian tribes who were mound builders. The mounds here are chiefly 
of the simple, conical type and show no special characteristics. 

8. The Gulf States district, which embraces the southeastern part of 
the United States. In this section the large, flat-topped pyramidal 

iiisTORV OF :\[rA:\ii county 19 

iiiouiuls and iin-losiiiTs or furtilieatiuus are abundant. There are also 
a number of effigy mounds, the great eagle mound of Georgia being one 
of the finest exampli's of this class in the country. 

Concerning the structure and purpose of the mouuds, Brinton says: 
"The mounds or tumuli are of earth, or earth mingled with stones, and 
are of two general classes, the one with a circular base and conical in 
shape, the other with a rectangular base and a superstructure in the 
form of a tnuicated i)yramid. The former are generally found to con- 
tain human remains anil are, therefore, held to have been barrows or 
sepulchral monuments raised over the distinguished dead, or, in some 
instances, serving as the comnuinal place of interment for a gens or elan. 
The truncated pyramids, with their flat surfaces, w^ere evidently the 
sites for buildings, such as tem{)les or council houses, which, being con- 
structed of perishable uuitcrial, have disappeared." 

While much of the foregoing is not directly applicable to i\riami 
county, it shows the various theories concerning the aborigines who dwelt 
or roved about in this country long before the white man even knew of 
the existence of the continent. At various places in the Wabash valley 
ajid the valleys of its tributaries — the Sixth district in Thomas" division 
— there are numerous relies of Jlound Builders, even though iliami 
county is lacking in works of interest to the archaeological student. With 
regard to the archaeological reuuiins in iMiami county, State Geologist 
Thompson, in his report for 1888 (page 188), says: 

"The ab<irigines of ^liami coiuity left but few monuments to per- 
petuate their memory. Occasional mounds are about the only earth- 
works, and these, or the greater part of them, are in the southern part 
of the county. As a rule the mounds observed are merely small, conical 
hillocks, varying in height from two to five feet, and in diameter from 
twenty to fifty feet. 

"Implements of stone are not rare, but they are by no means so 
plentiful as tiiey are in some other parts of the state. Stone axes of 
the grooved pattern are sometimes plowed up in the fields, or picked up 
in other places, and the smooth form of axe, or scraper, peeler or flesher, 
as it is sometimes teriued, an; fretiuentiy found. Flint arrow and spear 
lieads of various patterns, including the barbed, stemnu'd, rotary, ser- 
rated, triangular and leaf-shaped forms, are common, though not plen- 

"Pottery has only been found in fragments, and pipes are very rarely 
found. Perforated and |)olished pieces are rare. The Indian or ]\Iound 
Builder of ^liami county was an economical kind of citizen, and did not 
throw his implements of war or the chase away recklessly." 


The Indians 

At the time the Western Hemisphere was first visited by Europeans, 
the continent of North America was peopled by several groups or fam- 
ilies of Indians, each of which was distinguished by certain physical 
and lingviistic characteristics and occupied a well defined territory. In 
the north were the Eskimo, a people who has never played any important 
part in history. South of them and west of the Hudson bay were the 
Athapascan tribes, which were scattered over a wide expanse of terri- 
tory. Next came the Algoncjuian group, which occupied a great triangle, 
roughly bounded by the Atlantic coast on the east, a line drawn from 
the northernmost point of Labrador in a southwesterly direction to the 
Rocky mountains, and a line from the Rocky mountains to the Pamlico 
sound, on the coast of North Carolina. South of the Algonquian and 
east of the Mississippi river was the Muskhogean family, which included 
the Creek, Choctaw, Chickasaw and some other tribes. Directly west 
of this group, on the west side of the Mississippi, were the Caddoan 
tribes. The restless, hardy and warlike Siouan tribes occupied the upper 
Missouri valley, and in the western part of what is now the United States 
was the Shoshonean family. Along the St. Lawrence river and the 
shores of Lake Ontario and Lake Erie, in the very heart of the Algon- 
quian country, were the brave, warlike Iroquoian tribes, who were doubt- 
less the most intellectual of all the North American Indians. 

ilost of the Indian history of the nation centers about the Algonquian 
family, which was not only the most numerous, but also inhabited the 
largest scope of territory, and was so located that its tribes were the 
first to come in contact with the white men. This great family consisted 
of several hundred tribes, the most prominent of which were the Miami, 
Pottawatomi, Delaware, Shawnee, Chippewa and Ottawa. Among the 
Iro(iui)is the principal tribes were the Oneida, Onondaga. Seneca, Mohawk 
and Cayuga. The Algonquian invasion of Iroquois territory at an 
early date led to a confederacy being formed by these tribes, which 
became known as the "Five Nations," and which was a powerful factor 
in most of the early treaties made lietween the Indians and the whites. 
Subsequently the Tuscarora, another Iroquois tribe, was taken into the 
confederacy, which then took the name of the "Six Nations." 

The tribes that played the most conspicuous part in the region includ- 
ing Miami county were the Miami and Pottawatomi, both belonging to 
the great Algonquian family. Of all the tribes that inhabited the central 
part of the United States, the Miami was the most powerful and influen- 
tial. The tribal name is said to mean "People of the peninsula," and is 
pi-obably of Chippewa origin, as in early times that tribe and the Miami 



were closely related. As a tribe they have been variously designated as 
the Omes, Omamees and Auniianiis by the French, and the Twightwees, 
Tweetwees or Twa Twas, by the English, though the name "Miami" 
tinally came into general use. In the Jesuit Relations for 1658 Gabriel 
Druillettes refers to these Indians as the ' ' Omamik, ' ' and says they then 
inhabited the country about the mouth of the Green bay, in Wisconsin. 
Ten years later Perrot found at least part of the tribe "living in a 
fortified village on the headwaters of the Fox river, with some of the 
Mascoutens, " and Baequeville de la Potherie says that in 1667 "this 
tribe, with the ;\Iascoutens, Kiekapoo and part of the Illinois, settled 
in the .Mississippi valley, sixty leagues from their former habitation," 
but he neglects to inform his readers where that former habitation was. 

The fact that a few years later the Miami Indians were known to be 
scattered over a large territory compels the belief that the Indians 
mentioned by these early French writers were merely subordinate 
ti-ibes and did not include the main body. The French divided the tribe 
into six bands, viz: the Piankeshaw, the Wea, the Atchatchakangoueu, 
the Kelatika, the Mengakonkia and the Pepicokia. The last four have 
disappeared, or have been absorbed by other tribes, and the Piankeshaw 
and Wea came to be recognized as separate and independent tribes. 
The Eel Rivers, an ofif-slioot of the Miami, lived for some time on a 
reservation near Thorntown, Boone cou-nty, but subsequently joined the 
main body of the Miamis on the Wabash river. 

Early writers describe the Miami men as "of medium height, well 
built, heads rather round than oblong, countenances agreeable rather 
than sedate or morose, swift on foot and excessively fond of racing." 
The dress of the men consisted chiefly of the loin cloth, but the women 
wore gowns made of dressed deerskins. The French explorers found 
the women to be "distinguished for their polite manners, mild, affable 
and sedate character, and their respect for and obedience to their chiefs, 
who had greater authority than those of any other Algonquian tribe." 

While they depended largely upon the chase for their food supply, 
they also raised maize, or Indian corn, and some other vegetables. The 
women s\nin thread of buffalo hair and this thread was used to make 
bags in which to carry their supply of dried meat. The principal form 
of dwelling was the wigwam, composed of skins stretched over a frame- 
work of poles, tliough many lived in huts roofed with rush mats. They 
worshiped the sun and thunder, hul they did not have a multitude of 
minor deities as did the Huron. Ottawa and some other tribes. Usually 
the dead were buried in hollow logs. Occasionally, as in the case of 
some warrior of distinction, a solid log was split in halves and hollowed 
out for a coffin, and sometimes l)odies were buried in the ground in a 
recumbent position, without a coffin of any kind. 


Morgan divides the tribe into ten geutes, viz.: 1. Mowhawa (wolf), 
2. Mongwa (loon), 3. Kendawa (eagle), 4. Alipakosca (buzzard), 
5. Kanozawa (panther), 6. Pilawa (turkey), 7. Ahseponua (raccoon), 
8. Monnato (snow), 9. Kulswa (the sun), 10. Nape (water). Chauvig- 
nerie, writing in 1737, says the principal totems were the elk and the 
crane, and toward the close of the eighteenth century the chief totem 
was the turtle. It was used in signing at the great conference in 1793 
and also at the treaty of Greenville. None of these totems are mentioned 
by Morgan in his list. 

About 1671 or 1672 the Miamis separated from the Mascoutens and 
settled about the south end of Lake Michigan, establishing their princi- 
pal villages at Chicago, on the St. Joseph river and where the city of 
Kalamazoo, Michigan, now stands. Missions were established in these 
Indian settlements bj' Father Allouez before the year 1700. Early in 
the eighteenth century a Miami village was established at Detroit, but 
the village of Ke-ki-on-ga, at the head of the Maumee river, where the 
city of Fort Wayne is now located, continued to be the headquarters of 
the tribe. Other villages were Chi-ea-gou, Ko-ko-mo and Little Turtle's 
village on the Mississinewa river. Not long after the village was estab- 
lished at Detroit, a Wea village — called by the French Ouiatenon — was 
founded by that tribe on the Wabash river, not far from the present 
city of Lafayette. 

Margry says Cadillac reported from Detroit that about 1695, or 
perhaps a little earlier, the Sioux made a treacherous attack upon the 
Miamis and killed about three thousand of them, men, women and ehil- 
di'en being slaughtered without discrimination. A few years later came 
the Kickapoo, Pottawatomi and other northern tribes and forced the Mi- 
ami back to the Wabash river. The tribe then made new settlements on 
the Miami river, in Ohio, extending as far east as the Scioto river, and 
they held this country until after the treaty of 1763, when the.y removed 
back to Indiana. ]Miami traditions tell of a confederacy that claimed 
dominion over the territory now comprising the western part of Ohio, 
all of Indiana, a large part of Illinois, the southern part of Slichigan 
and part of the state of Wisconsin. It is believed by most historians 
that the alliance of the Miami with some of the other tribes inhabiting 
the Ohio valley was formed about the time of the invasion by the 
northern tribes, and the "Great Miami Confederacy" became to the 
Indians of the West what the "Six Nations" were to the East — a 
power that was not easily overcome and a potent factor in dictating the 
terms of treaties. For many years the headquarters of this confederacy 
were at Ke-ki-on-ga (Fort Wayne), whither all the .subordinate chiefs 
came to present their grievances and receive their instructions. When 


oiu' is familiar with the various c-haiiires made l)y the Miami Iiuliaiis 
ill their place of resideiiee. the speech of Little Turtle (ile-she-ke-iio- 
(juah), the great Miami chief, at the council of Greenville, in 1795, is 
better understood. At that council General Wayne proposed that the 
Indians reliiuiuish all claim to the lands east of a line running from the 
miiutli of the Kentucky river northward thr()u<rii Fort Recovery, Ohio. 
To tliis proposal Little Turtle replied for his people as follows: 

"I liojie \-on will listen to what I now say to you. "^'ou have pointed 
out to us the boundary line between the Indians and the United States. 
I now take the liberty to inform you that the line, as you would have it, 
cuts off from us a large section of country which we have occupied and 
enjoyed from a time the oldest of us cannot remember, and no one — 
white man or Indian — has ever disputed our rights to these lands, or 
offered to disturb us in our possession. It is well known by all my 
brothers present that my forefather kindled the first fire at Detroit; 
thence he extended his lines to the headwaters of the Scioto ; thence to 
its mouth ; thence down the Ohio river to the mouth of the Wabash, and 
from there to Chicago and over Lake Michigan. These are the bound- 
aries within which the prints of my ancestors' houses are ever.ywhere 
to be seen." 

After the return of the tribe to Indiana, following the treaty of 
1763, the .Miamis established several new villages, the most important of 
which was the Osage village, situated on the west bank of the ilissis- 
sinewa river about a mile above its mouth. This village was so called 
from an Osage Indian, whose name appears in treaties as "Osage the 
Neutral." The site of this village was included in the reservation 
granted to John B. Richardville in 1838. 

Across the river from this village and extending back perhaps a mile 
from the stream was another village, the name of which appears to have 
been lost. Possibly it was merely a straggling extension of the Osage 
village. The site is now occupied by what is known as the ' ' Goodenough 

Seek's village, the Indian name of which was Maconsaw, was situated 
on the Eel river, about three miles from where Columl)ia City, Whitley 
(;ounty, now stands, and was named after a Miami Chief. The village 
and its accompanying reservation were ceded to the United States in 

Choppatee's village, named for the chief who inhabited it, was on the 
west bank of the St. Joseph river, a few miles from Fort Wayne, and 
Meshingomesia's village was on the northwest side of the Mississinewa 
river, in what is now Liberty township, Wabash county. A reservation 


was established here for ^letosiua iu 1840 aud iu 1872 the land was 
divided among the surviving heirs of the old chief. 

Niconzah's village, also called Squirrel village, was on Big Pipe 
creek, not far from the present town of Bunker Hill. Other village 
chiefs were Chapine and White Loon, near the present town of Roanoke, 
Huntington county ; Black Loon and Big Majenica, near Andrews ; 
La Gros, near the town of Lagi-o, which bears his name ; Allolah, south of 
the present city of Wabash; Joe Russiaville aud IMississinewa, west of 
La Fontaine; and Shepoconah, or the Deaf Man, near the line that now 
separates Miami and Wabash counties, in Wabash county. 

Near the site where the battle of Tippecanoe was fought in 1811. the 
Miamis established a village at an early date. Afterward this village 
was occupied by the Shawnees. While the latter were there the village 
was attacked and destroyed by Wilkinson in 1791, at which time it con- 
sisted of 120 houses. Some years later the village was rebuilt by the 
Pottawatomi Indians, who in 1808 invited Tecumseh and his brother to 
make it their headquarters, when the place took the name of Prophet's 
Town. After its destruction by General Harrison in November, 1811, 
it was never again rebuilt. 

In 1846, after several treaties, the majority of the Miamis iu Indiana 
removed to a reservation in Kansas, in which state there is also a i\liami 
county named for this once powerful tribe. By the treaties of 1854 and 
1867 their lands in Kansas were taken from them and they were con- 
federated with the remnants of the Piankeshaw, Wea, Peoria and 
Kaskaskia tribes in the Indian Territory. By the consolidation and 
intermarriage of these tribes the identity of the Miami has been almost 
completely lost. 

When the white men began to establish settlements iu central Indiana 
they found all the region north of the Wabash river inhabited by the 
Pottawatomi Indians. Originally this tribe was one of the most numer- 
ous of the Algonquian family. The name "" Pottawatomi" signifies 
"People of the place of fire," aud the Jesuit Relations state that until 
about 1670 the tribe was known as the "Nation of fire." In early times 
the Pottawatomi, Chippewa and Ottawa were closely allied, if they were 
not in fact one tribe, and they were known as the "Three fires." Their 
tribal traditions say they lived together about the upper end of Lake 
Huron. After their separation the principal branches of the Pottawa- 
tomi were those on the St. Joseph and Huron rivers, in Michigan, and 
on the Wabash river in Indiana. 

Morgan divides the Pottawatomi into fifteen gentes, to wit: 1. Moah 
(wolf), 2. Mko (bear), 3. Muk (beaver), 4. Misshawa (elk), 5. Maak 
(loon), 6. Knou (eagle), 7. Nma (sturgeon), 8. Nmapena (carp), 


9. IMfrozcwa (bald eaglcj, 10. Clickwa (thunder), 11- Wabozo (rabbit), 
12. Kakatrslu' (crow), l\i. Wakeshi (fox), 14. Penna (turkey), 15. Mke- 
tashslickakah (hawk). 

Till' Pnttawatoiui have been described as "the most docile and affec- 
tionate toward the French of all the savages of the West." They were 
naturally polite, more kindly disposed toward' the early missionaries 
and the religion they taught them than any of the western triin'S, though 
some wi'iters say they were filthy in their habits, low in their nature, 
lazy, and would rather fish and hunt than tn till the soil. In their 
religion they had twci spii'its — Kitchemontlo, llie good spirit, and 
JIatchemondo, the evil .spirit — though Schoolcraft thinks these spirits 
were the result of the teaching of the missionaries. He says that in 
early times the Pottawatomi worshipped the sun and practiced polyg- 
amy. When starting to battle the tribe appealed to the two spirits, 
asking Kitchemondo to give them the victory and Matchemondo to 
confuse their enemies. 

Prior to the peace of 17G;!, the Pottawatomi sided with the French. 
They were with Pontiae in the uprising of that year and at the begin- 
ning of the Revolutionary war they cast their lot with the British. At 
the treaty of (ireenville, August 3, 1795, they served notice ui)on the 
Miami tribe that they intended to "move down upon the Wabash," 
which they did, in spite of the protests of the ]\Iiamis, "who claimed all 
that territory. About the beginning of the nineteenth century, the 
Pottawatomi were in possession of the country around the head of Lake 
]\Iichigan. extending from the Milwaukee river, in Wisconsin, to the 
Grand river, in .Michigan; thence across Michigan to Lake Erie; thence 
southwest, over a large part of Illinois, and all that part of Indiana 
lying north of the Wabash river. Within this teriitory they had about 
fifty villages. 

Ashkum, a Pottawatomi chief, had his village on the north side of 
the Eel river, not far from the present town of Denver, in Miami county. 
The village of JMetea, a chief distinguished for his bravery and oratory, 
was situated on the St. Joseph river, at the mouth of Cedar creek, near 
the village of Cedarville, in Allen county. JMetea was one of the leaders 
of the i)ai-ty that nuissacred the families of the garrison and settlers 
about old Fort Dearborn (where the city of Chicago now stands) as 
they were retreating to Detroit at the beginning of the War of 1812. 
His band of wari'iors also haiTassed the troops that were marching to the 
relief of Fort Wayne, in the fall of 1812, and in one of the engagements 
he was shot in the arm by Gt'ueral Harrison. At the treaty council in 
October, l.S2fi, he was one of the Pottawatonu Indians who imiiressed his 
hearers li\' his elo(|uence, but the following year he died in a drunken 


debauch at Fort ^Yay^e. His village, the Indian name of which was 
lluskwawasepeotan. was sold in 1828. 

The Pottawatomi took part in more than forty treaties with the 
United States. The last important treaty was that of February 27, 1837, 
soon after which the tribe left Indiana and took up their residence on a 
new reservation in Kansas. Although the tribe was one of the strongest 
of the Algonquian tribes numerically, it is probable that it never num- 
bered more than 3,000 or 4,000 warriors. In 1908 it had dwindled until 
the number in the United States was 2,522. Of these 1,768 lived in 
Oklahoma, 676 of what was left of the "Prairie baud" lived in Kansas, 
and 78 of the same band lived in Michigan. 

There is something pathetic in the manner in which the North 
American Indians were dispossessed of the lands where they and their 
ancestors had lived for generations before the coming of the white man, 
and it may be worth while to note the policies adopted by European 
nations to get possession of these lands. As eai-ly as 1529, Cortez, 
captain-general of New Spain, was directed by the Spanish government 
to "give his principal care to the conversion of the natives," and 
directed that "none shall be given to the Spaniards as slaves or 
servants." Bishop Ramirez, acting governor under Cortez, tried to 
carry out this royal edict, as well as the instructions of his church, but 
without avail. Indians were enslaved, treated with great cruelty and 
made to work in the mines, and their lands were taken ruthlessly and 
without promise of compensation. This was especially true in the con- 
quests of Mexico and Central America, and a similar policy prevailed 
among the Spaniards to some extent in the southern part of the United 

The French had no settled policy in dealing with the Indians. The 
Jesuit fathers were interested in their conversion to the Christian faith 
and the other early French immigrants were chiefly interested in the 
fur trade. They made little or no effort to cultivate the land or to 
dispossess the Indians, but the two peoples lived as neighbors, the 
Indians peaceably permitting the French to dwell among them and 
allowing them sufficient land for their needs, and the French always 
recognizing the rights of the natives as the original owners. 

In the English policy the Indian was not entirely forgotten, as may 
be seen in the early charters, but no provision was made for the educa- 
tion, support or conversion of the natives. Charters granted by the 
English kings generally authorized the colonists "if God shall grant 
it, to vanquish and captivate them ; and the captives to put to death, or, 
according to their discretion, to save." (Lord Baltimore's charter to 


Cyrus Thomas, of the United States Bureau of Ethiicrfogj", says: 
"Frequent and bloody wars, iu wliich the whites were not always the 
aggressors, unavoidably ensued. European policy, numbers and skill 
prevailed. As the white poi)uliition advanced, that of the Indians 
receded. The country in the immediate neighborhood of agriculturists 
became unfit for them. The game fled to thicker and more unbroken 
forests, and the Indians followed. . . . Tliat law which regulates, 
and ought to regulate in general, the relations between the conquerer 
and the coucjuered, was inapplicable to a people under such circum- 
stances. ' ' 

The Indians were therefore treated by the English colonists as mere 
occupants, or tenants. In lime of peace they were protected, to some 
extent at least, in the possession of their lands, but were not regarded as 
capable of transferring their title to others — the crown grants did that 
— and in war they were expelled, when their lands were "taken by con- 
quest"' without renuineration or recourse. 

In some degree, the United States inherited, or copied tlic English 
policy. Article IX of the Articles of Confederation gave congress the 
sole right to deal with the Indians and Indian affairs, under certain 
restrictions. Aiid by the act of March 1, 17SJ3, entitled "An act to regulate 
trade and intercourse with the Indian tribes," it was provided: 

"That no purchase or gi'ant of lands, or any title or claim thereto, 
from any Indians, or nation or tribe of Indians, within the bounds of the 
United States, shall be of any validity, in law or ('(|uity, unless the same 
be made by treaty or convention entered into pursuant to the constitu- 

Under this policy treaty followed treaty, each crowding the Indian 
farther toward the setting sun. After the treaties with the Miami and 
I'ottawatomi tribes in Indiana, as they left their cabins and favorite 
hunting grounds along the Wabash, the Kankakee, the Tippecanoe and 
tile ]Mississinewa, they cast longing looks backward toward the land which 
had so long been their home, and sorrowfully bade adieu to the scenes of 
llieir childhood forever. About all they have left are tlie names of the 
streams and towns, which the white man has adopted. And 

' ' The pale-face rears his wigwam where the Indian hunters roved. 
His hatchet fells the forest fair the Indian maidens loved. ' ' 



Early Miami Chiefs — Little Turtle — John B. Richardville — Legend 
OF How HE Became Chief — His Characteristics — Tribal Organi- 
zation — War Chiefs — Shepoconaii — Fr.\ncis Godfroy — How he 
WAS Chosen War Chief — His Family — His Death and Will- 
Gabriel Godfroy — Pottawatomi Chiefs — Treaties with the Pot- 
tawatomi — Treaties with the Miamis — Pull Text of the Great 
Treaty of 1838 — Schedule of Indian Land Grants — Treaty op 
1840 — The White Man in Possession. 

Little is known of the ;\lianii chiefs prior to July 3, 1748. On that 
date a treaty was concluded at Lancaster, Pennsylvania, between the 
chiefs of several tribes on one side and commissioners appointed by the 
English colonial autliorities on the other. In this treaty, which was 
merely one of peace and friendship, the name of A-gue-naek-gue appears 
as principal chief of the Miamis. At that time he lived at Turtle vil- 
lage, a few miles northeast of the present city of Fort Wayne. Two 
other .Miami chiefs from the Wabash country also signed the treaty, 
which lasted until after the establishment of the United States govern- 

Aguenackgue married a ]\Iohican woman, according to the Indian 
custom, and one of their sous was ]\Ie-she-ke-no-quah, or Little Turtle, 
who was born at Turtle village about 1747, and who became principal 
chief of the Miami nation upon the death of his father. About the time 
he succeeded to the chieftainship his tribe was regarded as the leading 
one in the West. His people were brave and fearless, were considered 
more intelligent than those of the surrounding tribes, lived in better 
habitations, possessed a greater degree of self respect, and were more 
careful in their dress and habits. To be the principal chief of this 
great tribe, one must have both physical and intellectual powers of a 
high order. 

Little Turtle was not lacking in any of the essential qualifications. 
From his mother he inherited many of the superior qualities of the 
Mohicans. Agile and athletic, his physical ability was not to be ques- 



tioiit'd for a luoinciit. As a youth his inHiu'uiice was made inaiiit'est 
on numerous occasions, and even the older warriors listened with 
respect when he presented his views in council. After he became chief, 
not only his own tribe, but also others of the Miami confcderncy. ackimwl- 
edgetl him as their great leader and followed him without the slitjhtest 
envy or jealousy. No military academy taught him the art of war. hut 
in the management of any anuy he showed the skill of a Napoleon. His 
prowess in this line is seen in the masterly manner in which lie conducted 
the assault on General St. Clair's army, November 4. ITHl.- Not until 
he met General Wayne, whom he designated as "tln' man who never 
sleeps," did Little Turtle acknowledge defeat. He was likewise a states- 
man, as well as a warrior, and was a conspicuous figure in tlie negotiation 
of several of the early treaties with the Cnited States. Having once 
affixed his signatiu'e to m ti'eaty. Iiis honor would not |>eruiit him to vio- 
late its stipulations, and by this mean^ iu> won the confidence and esteem 
of the whites. General (ieorge Washington, while president of the 
Cnited States, presented him with a medal and a handsome sword, which 
were buried with him at Fort Wayne, where he died on July 14, 1812. 
He was buried by the white people with honors, a monument was erected 
over his grave, <ind it was said of him that "he never offered or received 
a bribe." 

Jean l'.aj)tiste Kicluii'dviilc, commonly called John 15. Kichardville, 
became principal chief of the iliainis after the death of Little Turtle. His 
hulian nanu> was Pe-she-wa 'the l.vnx), a name indicative of his char- 
acter — always alert and watchful for his own interests and the welfare 
of his tribe. Richardville (pronounced Roosheville) was not a full- 
blootl Miami. His father, a noted Fi-encb trader, .was Joseph Drouet 
de Richardville, a scion of a noble family of France, and there is a tra- 
dition that he was an officer in the French service in Canada before be- 
coming interested in^the fur trade. His brother was a trader at Vin- 
cennes, where some of his descendants still live, and who according to 
Meginnis have in their possession valuable documents "which trace their 
ancestry back to the year 1162." 

The mother of Chief Richardville was TahJvum-wali, daughter of the 
old chief Aguenackgue and a sister of Little Turtle. He was born at 
the Miami village of Kekionga (Fort Wayne) about the year 1761. His 
election to the chieftainship of the tribe was the result of a daring feat 
that for bravery is entitled to rank with the defense of the pass at Ther- 
uiopjlae or the heroic .sacrifice of .\rnold W'inkelricd. A white nuiii was 
captured by a war part\- of ilia mis and brought into the Indian camp 
on the Maumee river. Little Turtle's successor had not yet been chosen 
and, after a consultation of the head men. the uiifoi-tunate prisoner 


was seuteuced to be buriu-d at the stake. Among the ]\Iiainis there were 
some who wanted to abandon this barbarous custom and one of these was 
Tah-kum-wah, the mother of Richardville. With her son she stood apart, 
sileuth- watching the preparations for the sacrifice of the prisoner, who, 
knowing that protestations were useless, resigned himself to his horrible 
fate. The stake was planted, the captive ))ound to it securely, the fagots 
piled around him, the bloodthirsty savages around him reveling in 
fiendish anticipation. When all was ready the torch was applied and 
the Indians "began tlu^ir awful dance of death." Then Richardville 's 
mother thrust a knife into his hand and bade him assert his claims to 
the chieftainship. Springing through the circle of frenzied dancers and 
kicking aside the blazing fagots, Richardville (juickly severed the cords 
that bound the prisoner and bore him beyond the cordon of flames. It 
would probably be a difficult matter to say which was the most aston- 
ished — the liberated captive or the Indians whose barbaric ceremony 
had been so rudely interrupted. Jleginnis says they were "by no means 
pleased at the loss of their prize, yet the young man. their favorite, for 
his daring conduct, was at once esteemed as a god by the crowd, aiul 
then became a chief of the first distinction and honor in the tribe." 

The story then continues to the effect that Richardville 's mother took 
charge of the man, placed him in a canoe, covered him with peltries and 
sent him down the ilaumee under the protection of friendly Indians. 
Some years later, while on his way to Washington, Richardville stopi)ed 
for a few hours in a town in Ohio and while there a stranger came up to 
him, gave him a warm greeting and declared himself to be the rescued 

- The story of this dramatic incident, was related by the chief to Allen 
Hamilton, the Indian agent at Fort Wayne, and has since been repeated 
by several writers, all of whom describe Richardville as a young man 
at the time he did the daring deed that won for him the chieftainship 
of his tribe. The same authorities agree that he did not become chief 
until after the death of Little Turtle, in the summer of 1812. The story 
of the rescue may be true, but if Richardville was born in 1761 and did 
not succeed to the chieftainship until after the death of Little Turtle, 
he was therefore past fifty years of age when he became the principal 
chief, civil ruler and great lawgiver of the Miamis. 

There is abundant evidence, however, that for years prior to that time 
he had been one of the leading men of his tribe. He was more of a diplo- 
mat than a warrior, but he took part in the action that defeated General 
Harmar's army in October, 1790. He was one of the Miami representa- 
tTves in the council of Greenville, which resulted in the treaty of August 
3, 1795 ; was one of the signers of the treaty of Fort Wayne, June 7. 


1803, ami nf the treaty oT (Irousi'laiid. Aii<i-iisl 21. ISO."). 'J'lic tfcatics (if 
1818, 1826 andl8.'i8 he signed as principal cliii'f. 

Richard ville was one of tlie chiefs who received $500 from the fjov- 
erniiient about 1827. with which to huild a To tlie apjjropriation 
he added a eonsiderahK> sum of his own money and luiilt a ratlirr ])re- 
tentious residence' on one of his I'esei-vations. Tlie "'Handbook" issued 
by the United States Bureau of Ktimology says: "His house on the bank 
of the St. Mary's, abdut four miles from Fort Wayne, was foi- many 
years known as the abode of hospitality."' For a mimher of years he 
conducted a lai-jre tradint; house at Fort Wayne, where he spent most 
of his time, but about 1836 he removed his trading post to Wabash and 
contiinied in linsincss there for some time, his wife and the younger mem- 
bi^rs of the family remaining at tiie houie on the St. Mary's. The follow- 
ing description of him is from the pen of Judge Horace P. Biddle, who 
was personally aei|uainted with the chief for several years preeedinij 
his death : 

'"In stature Richardville was about five feet ten inches, with broad 
shoulders, and weighed about 180 pounds. His personal appearance was 
attractive and he was graceful in carriage and manner. E.xemjit from 
any expression of levity, he is said to have 'preserved his dignity umlei- 
all circumstances.' His nose was Roman, his eyes were of a lightish blue 
and slightly protruding, his upper lip pressed firmly upon his teeth, and 
the under one slightly projecting. That he was an Indian half-breed 
there can be no doubt. His own statements and unvarying traditions 
conclusively prove that he inherited his position through his mother, by 
the laws of Indian descent, and contradict the theory that he was a 
■•'renchman, who obtained the chieftainship by trickery or purchase. 
In appearance he was remarkable, in that his skin was neither red nor 
white, but both coloi's combined in his skin, which was mottled or spotted 
red and white.'' 

Richardville died at his home on the St. Mary's river on August 13, 
1841. The next day he was buried by the Catholic church, the services 
being conducted by Father Clark, the priest from Peru, in the church 
of St. Augustine. His body was first interred where the cathedi'al of 
Fort Waj'ue was afterward erected, and when work on that building 
was commenced his remains were removed to the Catholic ceuieteis- south 
of the cit}-. His grave is marked by a marble monument placed there by 
his daughters. On the east side of the monument is the inscription: 
"Here rest the remains of Chief Richardville, principal chief of the 
.Miami tribe of Indians. He was born at Fort Wayne, about the year 
1760. Died August 13, A. I). 1841," and on the west side: "This 
monument has been, erected l)v La Blonde, Sarah and Catherine, 
daughters of the deceased." 


Catherine, whose Indian name was Po-con-go-qua, became the wife 
of Francis La Fontaine (To-pe-ah), who was the last principal chief of 
the ^Miamis. Like his illustrious predecessor, he was the son of a Preuch- 
niau and his mother was a Jliami. His marriage to the daughter of 
Biehardville occurred when he was about twenty-one years of age, and 
but a short time before the old chief's death. In that short interval he 
took such interest in the welfare of the iliamis that he was unanimously 
selected as chief soon after the death of his father-in-law. La Fontaine 
is described as a "tall portly man, weighing about 350 pounds." His 
home was on two sections of land a short distance east of the city of 
Huntington. But his elevation to the position of chief came after the 
treaties of 1826 and 1838, which had taken from the Miamis their lands 
and humbled their pride, hence he had no opportunity to display liis 
(lualifieatioiis as a leader. He accompanied his people to their new 
reservation in Kansas, spent the winter there with them, and the follow- 
ing spring set out to return to his home in Indiana. On the way he was 
taken ill and died at Lafayette, Indiana. April 13, 1847. His remains 
were taken to Huntington and interred in the Catholic cemetery. 

With regard to the social and political organization of the Indian 
tribes, J. N. B. Hewitt, of the United States Bureau of Ethnology, says: 
■'Among the Nortli American Indians a chief may be generally defined 
as a political officer whose distinctive functions are to execute the ascer- 
tained' will of a definite group of jjcrsons united by the possession of a 
common territory or range. . . . The clan or gens, the tribe and 
confederation present more complex forms of social and political organi- 
zation. The clan or gens embraces several such chieftaincies, and has 
a more highly developed internal political straeture with definite land 
l)oundaries. The tribe is constituted of several elans or gentes, and the 
confederation of several tribes. . . . There were in several com- 
munities, as the Iroquois and Greeks, civil and sub chiefs, chosen for 
jicrsonal merit, and permanent and temporary war chiefs." 

The social and political structure of the iliamis was very similar to 
that of the Iroquois and Creeks. The principal chief was the civil ruler 
and executive official of the tribe, and under him were the war chief and 
the chiefs of the clans or gentes. There is a tribal tradition that at an 
early date a chief named Osandiah, at the head of one division of the 
]\liami tribe, left the Wabash country and established himself on the Big 
Miami river in Ohio. Some time afterward he visited President Wash- 
ington, who presented him with several tokens of regard. His popular- 
ity with the white man 's government awakened the jealousy of some of 
the other clans and Osandiah 's death followed in such a way as to give 
rise to the suspicion that he had been poisoned. 


His son Ataw-ataw then became chief aud upon his 'death was iu turn 
succeeded by his son Met-o-cin-yah (or Me-to-sin-ia), who led the clan 
back to Indiana, locating near the line between the present counties of 
Grant and Wabash. Of his ten children Me-shin-go-me-sia, the eldest 
son, became chief of the band upon the death of his father. He was 
born in what is now Wabash county, about the time of the Revolutionary 
war, according to Indian tradition, and lived until December, 1879. At 
the battle of the Mississinewa, December 18, 1812, he distinguished him- 
.self by his bravery and qualities as a leader, but at his death the band had 
become so decimated that the chiel'tainship perished. 

From this tradition it appears that at least some of the minor chiefs 
inherited their honors, though the known history of the tribe shows that 
L'liii'fs were frequently selected for their intellectual ability, or as a 
reward for the performance of some noteworthy action, as in the case of 

In Little Turtle the functions of civil ruler and war chief were com- 
bined. After his death, when Richardville became the principal chief, 
the mantle of the war chief fell upon She-po-con-ah. later known as 
the Deaf i\lan, who was the husband of Frances Slocum, the white woman 
mentioned in another chapter. Shepoconah is described as a large, 
heavy set man and a great warrior until his hearing became affected. 
His headciuarters were at the Osage village, near the mouth of the 
Mississinewa river, until he retired from the chieftainship, when he went 
farther up the river and built a log house, where a settlement grew 
up that became known as "the Deaf Man's village." He died iu the 
early '30s and was buried on a knoll a few hundred yards from his 
dwelling. Graham, in his History of IMiami County, says that Shepo- 
conah i)artieipated iu the battle of Fort Wayne, August 20, 1794; the 
battle of Tippecanoe, November 7, 1811, and the battle of the Mississi- 
newa, December 18, 1812. In the last named engagement he was one of 
the leaders of the Indian forces against Colonel Campbell. 

Upon the resignation of Shepoconah, Francis Godfroy was made 
the war chief of the ]\Iiamis. He was a son of Jacques or James (some- 
times called Jocko) Godfroy, a French trader among the Indians along 
the Wabash. It is said that Jacques Godfroy was a descendant of God- 
froy of Bouillon, the famous crusader whose standard was the first to 
be planted upon the walls of Jerusalem, July 5, 10!)i), in the crusade 
against the Saracens. Francis Godfroy was born near Fort Wayne in 
March, 1788. As a youth he was noted for his physical strength, daring 
and bravery. He and his brother Louis were distinguished from early 
manhood and commanded the respect of the entire Miami tribe. They 
were leaders in the battles of Fort Wayne, Tippecanoe and the Missis- 


sinewa, as well as several other engagements. Judge Horace P. Biddle 
relates the following story, showing how Francis came to be chosen as the 
war chief: 

, "There was a vei-y bad Indian in the trilie known as ]\Ia-.ien-i-ca. 
He was a drinking, quarrelsome man and frequently killed those who 
displeased him. Being the chief of a village, he was greatly feared. 
Once upon a time, as the story runs, he was in a boisterous condition 
at a council, which was being held on the liill just above where the God- 
froy cemetery is now located. Francis Godfrey, then a young man, 
was present. From some remark, he incurred the displeasure of ila- 
jen-i-ca, who commanded him to sit down, telling him he was no man. 
Young Godfrey resented the insult, and told him that he was no man — 
that he was a coward — that he should desist from stabbing and killing 
his own people for trivial causes. These remarks greatly excited Jla- 
jen-i-ca, and. drawing his knife, he rushed on Godfroy. The latter being 
brave and powerful, (juickly seized his assailant by the wrist and held 
his arm tirmJy. Then he drew his own knife and told him the braver 
way would be to tight a duel. Still holding him I)y the arm, he com- 
manded him to look upon yonder sun for the last time if he proposed 
to tight. If not intending to tight, and if he was a brave man, he would 
drop his knife. Godfroy stood tirm and ready to fight, and. being a giant 
in strength, caused his assailant, through his determined look, to quail. 
Finally the big chief dropped his knife and yielded to the superior will 
of Godfroy. This act of bravery resulted in the latter being chosen 
war chief after the resignation of She-pan-can-ah. "" 

In the treaty of St. Mary's in October, 1818, Francis was granted 
a reservation of six sections of land on the Salamonie river and his brother 
Louis a reservation of the same size on the St. ilary's. On December 
2, 1824, an agreement, witnessed by Joseph Bai-ron and General John 
Tipton, was entered into by Francis and Louis Godfroy to exchange one 
section of these reservations, "the sole object and purpose of the exchange 
being that the brothers may live near each other," and they bound 
themselves not to sell or otherwise dispose of the sections thus exchanged 
except by mutual consent." 

About a year before this exchange was made, Francis Godfroy had 
established a trading post on the Wabash river, near the mouth of the 
Mississinewa, which he named Blount Pleasant. As a trader he was 
successful and amassed a considerable fortune. He would probably have 
become as wealthy as Richardville, had it not been for his liberality. 
Stephens says: "The most distinguished quality in the character of 
Francis Godfroy was his generosity. In this he was a prince. He was 
like a good, old father to his tribe. His Mount Pleasant home was like 


an Indian village. A niiiiil)cr of Indians wure always feasting at iiis 
table. Generosity was e.xtended to all. His home was like that of a 
lord of an English manor, or a king of a French feudal state — here 
were horses and hounds, gun.s and ammunition, the chase and tlh; feast. 
He was held in perfeet rcvcrenee by his people." 

Although Godfrey's father was a Frenchman and the French largely 
predominated in his character, his mother was a :\liami woman and he 
always claimed to belong to that tribe. Ilis first wife was Sac-a-che- 
<iuah. Ihe daughter of a white man named Cole, who was captured 
when a child in Kentucky by the Shawnees, grew up among the Indians 
and acted as interpreter at the treaty of Greenville in 1795. Ilis 
sister became the wife of White "Wolf. By his first marriage Francis 
Godfrey had six children — Poqua, Tac-con-ze-quah, Catherine, Louisa, 
James R. and William. His second wife was a Miami woman named 
Sac-a-qua-tah, who also bore him six children, viz. : Sallie, George W., 
Thomas, Gabriel, Clemenee and Frances. George Washington, when 
only fourteen years of age, was killed by a bolt of lightning, which 
came from an almost clear sky, in May, 1841, while he was sitting on 
his horse in front of his father's trading house. The incident was 
regarded with profound super.stition by the Miamis and a large Imwldcr 
near the place was for many years pointed out as marking the place of 
his tragic death. 

In his personal appearance Francis Godfrey was ever six feet iu 
height, weighed about three hundred pounds, and carried the air of one 
"born to command." It is said that even those against whom he fought 
in battle respected him. While Colonal Richard ^I. Johnson was vice- 
president of the United States, Chief Godfrey sent him an elaborately 
decorated tomahawk, the receipt of which Colonel Johnson acknowledged 
in the following letter to Colonel Abel C. Pepper, superintendent of 
Indian affairs: 

"Senate Chamber, 12 January, 1839. 

"Sir: — I have this day received the elegant tomahawk from your 
hands, as a present from my friend and brother, the brave Jliami chief, 
Palonzwa, and I now return my thanks to that brave and generous chief 
and warrior, and let him know- that I shall ever keep it as a token 
of his friendship. 

"In addition to this, I send by you a brace of pistols, which you will 
please present to that brave chief and warrior as an evidence of regard. 
With sentiments of great respect, 

"Your friend and obedient servant, 

"Rh. M. Johnson." 


Palonzwa, the name that appears in Colonel Johnson's letter, was the 
Indian pronunciation of the French word Francois, which was the real 
name of Chief Godfrey, but which became corrupted into the English 
name Francis. 

After a lingering illness Francis Godfroy died on Jlay 1, 1840, 
and was buried on the rising ground a short distance south of his Mount 
Pleasant home. His funeral was attended by hundreds of white people, 
as well as a large number of the Miamis. The funeral oration was 
delivered by Wap-pa-pin-sha (Black Racoon), who was one of the local 
chiefs and most noted orators of the IMiami tribe. Translated, his 
address was as follows: 

"Brothers: The Great Spirit has taken to himself another of our 
once powerful and happy, but now rapidl.v declining nation. The time 
has been when these forests were deusel3' populated by the red man; 
but the same hand whose blighting touch ^vithered the majestic frame 
before us, and caused the noble spirit by which it was animated to seek 
another abode, has dealt in a like manner with his and our fathers; in 
a like manner it will deal with us. Death, of late, has been common 
among us — so much so that an occurrence of it scarcely attracts our 
notice. But when the brave, the generous and the patriotic are blasted 
by it, then it is that the tears of our sorrow freely flow. 

' ' Such is now the ease. Our brother who has just left us was brave, 
generous and patriotic, and as a tribute to his merit, and a reward for 
goodness, the teai-s, not only of his own people, but also of many white 
men, who are here assembled to witness these funeral rites, mingle in 
sorrow over the death of one they loved. 

"At this scene the poor of his people weep, because at his table they 
were wont to feast and rejoice. The weak mourn his death, because his 
authority was directed to their protection. But he has left the earth, 
the place of vexation and contention, and is now participating with 
Pocahontas and Logan in those joys prepared by the Great Spirit for 
such as well and faithfully discharge their duties here. Brothers, let 
us follow his example and practice his virtues. ' ' 

On February 26, 1840, Francis Godfroy executed a will, disposing 
of the lands granted to him by treaties with the United States, and 
other property which he had accumulated. To this will a codicil was 
added only a short time before his death. As this will is of historic 
interest to the people of Miami county, forming, as it does, the basis 
of title to a great deal of real estate in the county, it is here reproduced 
in full : 

"I, Francis Godfroy, a Miami Indian, of the county of Miami, 
Indiana, being desirous to settle and dispose of my worldly affairs while 


ill a sound mind, iiiciiiory and understanding, do puhlisli and declare this 
as my last will and testament : 

"First, I desire my body to be decently interred, at the discretion of 
my executors hereinafter named. 

"Second, It is my will and I hereby bequeath to iny beloved son, 
James R. Godfroy, one section of land, to include my mill on the creek 
below Peru, commonly called Pipe creek. 

"Third, I will and bequeath to my beloved son, William Godfroy, 
one section of land lying on the Mississinewa river, being the section of 
land gi-anted to O-san-di-ah at the treaty between the United States 
and the Miami Indians of 1838, which I purchased of the said O-san- 

"Fourth, I will ami bequeath to my beloved son, George Washing- 
ton, the section of land lying opposite the town of Peru, on the Wabash, 
being the same on which Peter Gibout now lives. 

"Fifth, I will and bequeath to my dearly beloved sons, Thomas God- 
froy and Gabriel Godfroy, as tenants in common, three-fourths of the 
section lying above and adjoining the town of Peru, which said three- 
fourths of a section so bequeathed as aforesaid is a part of the section 
granted to me adjoining the town of Peru at the treaty between the 
United States and the ^liaini Indians of October, 1834. 

"Sixth, For the purpose of educating my sou Gabriel, I hereby 
will and bequeath to him, in addition to my former bequest, the one- 
quarter section of land lying opposite my house, being the same pur- 
chased of John B. Richardville. 

"Seventh, I will and bequeath unto my two wives, or the mothers of 
my children, Sac-a-che-quah and Sac-kali-(iuet-tah, anil my beloved chil- 
dren, my eldest unmarried daughter, Louisa, to my daughter Sally, to my 
daughter Frances, to my daughter Clemence, the four sections of land 
and improvements wliere I now live, during the lifetime of my said wives, 
to be decided in case of dispute by my executors during the lives of my 
wives. The two of the four sections of land aforesaid to include the 
houses and improvements, I will and beqeuath to my said daughters, 
Louisa, Sally, Finances and (Jlemence, as tenants in common and to their 
heirs forever. The remaining two of the four sections aforesaid, I will 
and be(|ueath to all my children and their heirs and a.ssigns, as well as 
those who are devisees to this will, as also Poqua, and the wife of Good- 
boo, to be equally divided among them all. 

"Eighth, It is my will that after the personal property, which I may 
be possessed of at the time of my death, should be exhausted, that my 
executors, or the survivor of them, or the person who may administer on 
my estate, shall sell so much of my real estate as he or they may deem 


necessary for the payment of iny debts, the same to be sold for such prices 
as he or they may deem reasonable. Such real estate to be sold as is not 
devised individually to any member of my family. 

"Ninth, I will and bequeath such property as I may die possessed 
of, both real and personal, not heretofore disposed of, after my debts are 
paid, to be equally divided among all my children, share and share alike. 

"Tenth, All the property devised to all the devisees in this my 
last will is hereby beciueathed to them, their heirs and assigns forever. 

"Lastly, I hereby constitute and appoint Allen Hamilton and John 
B. Richardville, of the county of Allen, to be the sole executors of this my 
last will and testament. In the case of the death of either of them, the 
other to be sole executor, or in case one fails to serve, then the other to be 
the executor. 

"In testimony wlu'reof, 1 have hereunto set my hand and seal, the 
twenty-sixth day of February, 1840. 

"Fkancls (X) GoDFROY. (Se.vl) 

"Signed, sealed, jjublished and declared by the testator as and for 
his last will and testament, executed in the presence of the undersigned, 
who signed the same as witnesses in the presence of each other, and in the 
presence of the testator sub.scribed their names as such witnesses at the 
request of said testator, the 26th day of February, 1840. 

"Edw.vrd a. Godfeoy. 

"Peter (X) Andre. 

"B. H. Scott. 
"F. S. Corn-wall." 

In the codicil provisions were made for defending the titles to several 
tracts of land bought by Godfroy from Wap-pa-piu-sha and other Indians 
by the employment of James Raridon as attorney, and that the sum of 
$1,000 should be paid by his executors to his wife, Sac-kah-quet-tah, imme- 
diately after his decease, the money to be used for the support of the in- 
fant children. The principal jirovisions of the codicil, however, was as 
follows : 

"I do further will and direct that my executor or administrator lay 
off, within three mouths after my decease, on the (luai'ter section of laud 
immediately adjoining the town of Peru, town lots and streets in continu- 
ation and corresponding in size and width with the lots and streets in 



Peru, excepting only tliat portion of the said quarter section near the 
sand hill, suitable for taniier\- sites, for whieli pui-pose I desire that it 
should be laid off in lots of two acres each; that every fourth of the town 
lots and tannery sites ])e reserved and titles for th(> same executed to my 
son, James Godfrey, and tlie remaining tliree-foui-ths of each description 
of said lots be sold at puhlie auction to the high(>st bidder, on the follow- 
ing conditions, to wit: Om-tliii-.l nf ihc purchase money to be paid at 

Gabriel Godproy 

the expiration of six months from the day of sale, the remainder in two 
equal payments at the expii-atiou of twelve and eisrhteeii montlis from the 
day of sale; and I hereby authorize and empowi>r my said executor or 
administrator, when full payment is nuidi' by the purchasers, to make, 
seal and deliver deeds for the ccmveyanee of said lots to the purchasers, 
their heirs and assigns, hereby vesting him with full power and authority 
to act in the jircnnses as fully to every intent and purpose as I myself 
could do if living. The proceeds of the sales of the the aforesaid lots I 


hereby direct my said executor or administrator to apply to the discharge 
of my just debts, and in the event of there being thereafter a surplus, that 
the same be by my said executor invested in bank stock, and the annual 
interest thereon be applied to the discharge of the taxes on my real estate. ' ' 

Some time after the death of Francis Godfi'oy, his sons erected a 
handsome marble monument over his gi-ave. On one side is the name, 
date of birth and death of the deceased, and on the other is the inscrip- 
tion : "Late Principal Chief of the ^liami Nation of Indians. Dis- 
tinguished for courage, humanity, benevolence and honor, he lived in his 
native forests an illustration of the nobleness of his race, enjoying the 
confidence of his tribe and beloved by his American neighbors. He died 
as he lived — without fear or reproach." 

The inscrijition is somewhat misleading, in that it describes Godfroy 
as "Late Principal Chief," when, as a matter of fact, he was the war 
chief of the tribe. 

Gabriel, the son of Francis Godfroy, lived for many years after the 
death of his father and was called by courtesy and common consent 
"the last chief of the Miamis." For a long time he lived in a brick 
house on the right bank of the ]\Iississinewa river, a short distance above 
its mouth and across the valley from the old Osage village. His farm 
there was a part of the reservation of four sections of land granted to 
his father by the treaty of November 6, 1838. After a time this farm 
was acquired by B. E. Wallace and is now the winter quarters of the 
Hagenback and Wallace shows. The closing years of Gabriel Godfroy 's 
life were passed farther east, on the road to and near the old cemetery 
where his father lies buried. He was held in high esteem by the Miamis 
of Indiana and is said to have been guardian for more persons than any 
other man in the United States. His death occurred in 1911. 

Among the Miamis, besides the principal chief and the war chief, 
there were numerous band or village chiefs. The names of several of 
the most important of these minor chiefs appear as signers of the great 
treaty of 1838. 

Of the Pottawatomi chiefs that inliabited the country immediately 
north of the Wabash, the most prominent were Winamac, Ashkum, 
Weesau, Chechawkose, Kinkash, Metea, Menoquet and Mota. Ashkum 's 
and Weesau 's villages on the Eel river were the only Pottawatomi 
villages within the limits of Miami county. Ashkum 's village and its 
reservation were ceded to the United States in 1836, and Weesau 's vil- 
lage was ceded the next year, when the tribe relinquished title to all its 
lands in Indiana and soon afterward removed to a reservation in Kansas. 
Winamac (the Catfish) was no doubt the leading Pottawatomi chief in 


the Wabasli valley. There were, in fact, two cliiefs of tliat name. The 
elder signed the treaty of Greenville in 17!)') and the treaties of Fort 
Wayne in 1803 and 1809. He was in the liattle of Tippecanoe, fought 
with the British in the War of 1812, and was one of the chiefs that 
brought about the massacre of the whites at Fort Dearborn on August 
15, 1812. On the 22nd of November following this massacre Winamac 
was killed by a Shawnee Indian. The younger Winamac had his vil- 
lage on the Tippecanoe river, where the county seat of Pulaski county 
now stands, and which bears his name. He was in the battle of Tippe- 
canoe, but afterward became friendly to the Americans and was influen- 
tial in securing the cession of the I'ottawatonii lands in Indiana to the 
United States. 

An account of the treaties made between the United States and the 
Miami and Pottawatomi Indians previous to the admission of Indiana 
into the Union as a state will be found in the chapter on the "Period of 
Preparation." After the admission of the state their was a heavy tide of 
immigration and the chiefs asked for a treaty to establish the boundary 
of the Indian lands. Jonathan Jennings, Benjamin Parke and Lewis 
Cass were appointed commissioners on behalf of the United States to 
negotiate the treaty, which was concluded with the Pottawatomi at St. 
Mary's, Ohio, on October 2, 1818. The next day it was ratified by the 
Delawares, who relinquished all their lands in Indiana, and on the fith 
the treaty with the Miamis was concluded. By this treaty the tribe 
ceded all its lands south of the Wabash river, except what was known 
as the "Big Reserve," wliich extended along the Wabash river from the 
mouth of the Salamonie to the mouth of the Eel river and "from those 
points running due south a distance equal to a direct line from the 
mouth of the Salamonie to the mouth of the Eel river." The "Big 
Reserve," as thus estal)lished, included all that part of Miami county 
lying south of the Wabash ; the southeastern part of Cass ; that portion of 
Wabash county south of the river and west of a line running south 
from the mouth of the Salamonie, near the present town of Lagro; 
about one-third of Grant county — all west of that line; the northeastern 
corner of Clinton; the northern half of Tipton; all of Howard, and the 
northwestern corner of Madison county. It contained nearly one million 
acres of land. 

Three years later, when it became known that the capital of the new 
state was to be permanently located at Indianapolis, immigration was 
attracted to the central and northern portions of the state and again the 
Indian found the white man encroaching upon his domain. These condi- 
tions led to the treaty of October 16, 1826, which was concluded at 


the mouth of the ]Mississine\va river, when the Pottawatonii ceded all 
that part of Indiana included within the following boundaries: 

"Beginning on the Tippecanoe river where the northern boundary 
of the tract ceded by the Potawatoniies to the United States by the treaty 
of St. Mary's in 1818 intersects the same; hence in a direct line to a 
jtoint on Eel river half way between the mouth of said river and Pierish 's 
village; thence up Eel river to Seek's village near the head thereof; 
thence in a direct line to the mouth of a creek emptying into the St. 
Joseph's of the ilianii near Metea's village; thence up the St. Joseph's 
to the boundary line between the states of Indiana and Ohio; thence 
south to the Miami (Maumee) ; thence up the same to the reservation at 
Fort Wayne ; thence with the lines of the said reservation to the boundary 
established by the treaty with the iliamis in 1818 ; thence with the said 
line to the Wabash river; thence with the same river to the mouth of 
the Tippecanoe river; and thence with the said Tippecanoe river to the 
place of beginning." 

Seek's village was near Columbia City; Pierish 's village was on the 
north side of the Eel river, almost due north of the city of Wabash ; 
Metea's village was on the St. Joseph river, about eight miles from the 
Ohio line. The cession made by this treaty included the greater part 
of Cass county, all that part of iliami lying between the Wabash and 
Eel rivers and a large part of Huntington and Allen counties. 

Just a week later — October 23, 1826 — at the same place a treaty 
was concluded with the Mianiis, by which that tribe ceded all claiaa 
"to the lands in the State of Indiana, north and west of the Wabash 
and I\Iiami rivers, and of the cession made by said tribe to the United 
States by the treaty concluded at St. Mary's, October 6, 1818." For the 
lands thus ceded the ]\Iianiis received $31,040.53 in cash and a similar 
amount in goods. In 1827 they received an additional payment of 
$61,259.47 and in 1828 they received $30,000. After that they were paid 
an annuity of $25,000. The treaty also authorized the State of Indiana 
to lay out and construct a canal or road through any of the reservations, 
and for the right of way for the canal a strip of land six chains in width 
was appropriated. 

Within the territory ceded by the Pottawatonii and iliauii tribes 
by the treaties of October, 1826, was what was known as the "Five- 
mile Reserve," so-called because it included a tract of land five miles 
in width, extending from the Wabash river to the Eel river. The 
east line of this reserve began on the Wabash river two and a half miles 
above the mouth of the Mississinewa, and the west line, two and a half 
miles lielow the mouth of that stream, was coincident with the east line 
of the individual reservation later granted to J. B. Richardville. The 

HISTOKV (»K .MlA.Ml Col-XTV 43 

southwest corner of the Five-mile Reserve rested on the Wabash river 
l)etvveen the present streets of Broadway and Wabash, in the city of 
Peru. lu 1834 the Five-mile Reserve was ceded to the United States, 
lint within its limits several individual reservations were given to cer- 
tain Indians. One of these was the reservation of Francis Godfroy, 
No. 12, the southwest fiuarter of which now forms Godfrey's addition to 
the city of I'ei'u, under the provisions of Francis Godfroy's will. All 
these individual reservations were granted subject to the former pro- 
vision of the treaty of 1826, setting apart a strip six chains wide for 
a canal or highway. On account of these individual reservations Presi- 
dent Jackson refused to ratify the treaty of 1834 and it did not become 
effective until late in the year 1837. 

Some time after the treaty of 1826 was coneludetl. Congress appro- 
priated a strip five miles wide along the Wabash for the construc- 
tion of the canal to the mouth of the Tippecanoe river, and for this 
strip paid tlie sum of $335,680. By the treaty of October 23, 1834, 
the Miamis ceded several small reservations granted to individuals and 
clans by former treaties, and the same year the government purchased 
a strip seven miles wide off the west side of the "Big Reserve" — 
177,000 acres in all — in Ihe pi'csent counties of Cass, Howard and Clin- 
ton, and this tract was turned over to the State of Indiana to aid in 
tile construction (if the canal. As the Indians saw their reservation 
tiius passing to the ownership of the white man many of them became 
dissatistied and proposed to sell the remaining portion of their lands in 
1 1. (liana and remove to a new reservation beyond the ^Mississippi. The 
result of this condition of affairs was the treaty of 1838. 

Abel C. Pepper was apjiointed eonnnissioner on the part of the United 
States to hold a council with the Indians and ascertain their views 
witli regard to the disposal of their lands. The council met at the 
"Forks of the \Val)asli," a short distance south of the city, of llnntin^'- 
ton, at the place known as the "Treaty Ground," where on November 
6, 1838, a treaty was concluded. As this treaty wfis the one by which 
Miami county was fully opened to settlement by white people, the full 
text is here given : 

"Article 1. The ^liami trilie of Indians liei'eby cede to the United 
States all that tract of land lying south of the Wabash river and included 
within the following boundaries, to wit: Conniiencing at a point on 
said river where the western boundary line of the Miami reserve inter- 
sects the same, near the mouth of Pipe creek; thence south two miles; 
thence west one mile; thence south along said boundary line tiiree miles; 
thence east to the Mississinewa river; thence U]) said i-ivei-, with tlu; 
iiicati(lei-s tlici'cof, to the eastern boundarv line of the said Miami 


reserve; thence north along said eastern boundary line to the Wabash 
river; thence down said last named river, with the meanders thereof, 
to the place of beginning. 

"The said ilianii tribe of Indians do also hereby cede to the United 
States the three following reservations of land, made for the use of the 
j\Iiami nation of Indians by the second article of a treaty made and 
concluded at St. :Mary's. in the State of Ohio, on the fith day of October, 
1818, to wit: 

"The reservation on the Wabash river, below the forks thereof. 

"The residue of the reservation opposite the mouth of the river 

"The reservation at the mouth of a creek called Flat Koek. where 
the road to the White river crosses the same. 

"Also one other reservation made for the use of the said tribe at 
Seek's village, on Eel river, by the second article of a treaty made and 
concluded on the 23d of October, 1826. 

"Article 2. From the cession aforesaid, the Miami tribe reserve 
for the band of Me-to-sin-in, the following tract of land, to wit: 
Beginning on the eastern boundary line of the Big Reserve, where the 
Slississinewa river crosses the same; thence down said river with the 
meanders thereof to the mouth of the creek called Forked Branch; 
thence north two miles; thence in a direct line to a point on the eastern 
boundary line two miles north of the place of beginning ; thence south to 
the place of beginning, supposed to contain ten square miles. 

"Article 3. In consideration of the cession aforesaid, the United 
States agree to pay the Miami tribe of Indians |335,CS0 — $60,000 of 
which to be paid immediately after the ratification of this treaty and 
the appropriation to carry its provisions into effect; and the residue 
of said sum, after the payment of claims hereinafter stipulated to be 
paid, in ten yearly installments of .$12,568 per year. 

"Article 4. It is further stipulated that the sum of $6,800 be paid 
John B. Richardville ; and the sum of $2,612 be paid Francis God- 
froy; which sums are their respective claims against said tribe prior 
to October 23, 1834, excluded from investigation by the late commis- 
sioners of the United States, by reason of their l)eing Indians of said 

"Article 5. The said Miami tribe of Indians being anxious to pay all 
their just debts, at their request it is stipulated that immediately after the 
ratification of this treaty, the United States shall appoint a commissioner 
or commissioners, who shall be authorized to investigate all claims against 
said tribe which have accrued since the 23d day of October, 1834, with- 
out regard to distinction of blood in the claimants ; and to pay such debts 


as, haviiifT accrued since the said i)ei-iod, shall l)e proved to his or their 
satisl'actioii to be Icf^al and just. 

"Article 6. It is further stipulalrd lliat the sum of $ 151 ),()(!() out of 
the amount agreed to l)e paid said tribe in the third article of this treaty, 
shall be set apart for the payment of claims under the provisions of the 
fourth and fifth articles of this treaty, as well as for the balance ascer- 
tained to be due from said tribe by the investiy:ations under the pro- 
visions of the treaty of 1834; and should there be an unexpended 
balance in the hands of the commissioner or commissioners after the 
payment of said claims, the same shall be paid over to the tribe at the 
payment of their next subsecjuent annuity; but should the said sum 
set apart for the purpose aforesaid, be found insufficient to pay the same, 
then the ascertained balance due on said claims shall be paid in three 
equal installments from the annuities of said tribe. 

"And the said Miami tribe of Indians, through this public instru- 
ment, proclaim to all concerned that no debt or debts that any Indian 
or Indians of said tribe may contract with any person or persons, shall 
operate as a lien on the annuity or annuities, nor on the land of said 
tribe, for legal enforcement; nor shall any per.son or persons other than 
the members of said Miami tribe, who may by sufferance live on the 
land of, or intermarry in, saiil tribe, have any right to the land or any 
interest in the annuities of said tribe, until such person or persons 
shall have been by general council adopted into their tribe. 

"Article 7. And it is further stipulated, that the I'nitcd States will 
cause the buildings and improvements on the land hereby ceded, to be 
appraised, and have buildings and improvements of a cori-esi3ondiug value 
made at such place as the chiefs of said tribe may designate ; and the 
Indians of said tribe are to remain in the peaceable occupation of their 
present improvements until the I'nited States shall make the said cor- 
responding improvements. 

"Article 8. It is further stipulated that the United States patent 
to Beaver for five sections of land, and to Chapiue for one section of land, 
reserved to them respectively in the second article of the treaty made 
A. D. 1826, is continued between the parties to the present treaty. 

"Article 9. The United States agree to cause the boundary lines 
of the land of said tribe in the State of Indiana, to be surveyed and 
marked within the i)eriod of one year after the ratification of this 

"Article 10. The United States stipulate to possess the Miami tribe 
of Indians of, and guaranty to them forever, a country west of the 
Mississii)pi river, to remove to and settle on, whenever the said tribe may 
be disposed to emigrate from their present country, and that guaranty 


is hereby pledged; aud the said country shall be sufficient in extent, 
and suited to their wants and conditions, and be in a region contiguous 
to that in the occupation of the tribes which emigrated from the States 
of Ohio and Indiana. Aud when the said tribe shall have emigi-ated, 
the United States shall protect the said tribe and the people thereof, in 
their rights and possessions, against the injuries, encroachments and 
oppressions of any person or persons, tribe or tribes whatsoever. 

"Article 11. It is further stipulated, that the United States will 
defray the expenses of a deputation of six chiefs or head men, to explore 
the country to be assigned to said tribe west of the Mississippi river. 
Said deputation to be selected by said tribe in general council. 

"Article 12. The United States agree by patent to each of the iliami 
Indians named in the schedule hereunto annexed, the tracts of land 
therein respectively designated. And the said tribe in general council 
request, that the patents for the grants in said schedule contained, shall 
be transmitted to the principal chief of said tribe, to be by him dis- 
tributed to the respective grantees. 

"Article 13. And it is further stipulated, that should this treaty 
not be ratified at the next session of the Congress of the United States, 
then it shall be null and void to all intents and purposes between the 


"Article 14. And whereas, John B. Richardville, the principal chief 
of said tribe, is very old and infirm, and not well able to endure the 
fatigue of a long journey, it is agreed that the United States will pay to 
him and his family the proportion of the annuity of said tribe which 
their number shall indicate to be due to them, at Fort Wayne, whenever 
the said tribe shall emigrate to the country to be assigned theni west, as 
a future residence. 

"Article 15. It is further stipulated, that as long as the Congress of 
the United States shall in its discretion make an appropriation under the 
sixth article of the treaty made between the United States aud said tribe 
in the year 182G, for the support of the infirm and the education of the 
youth of said tribe, one-half of the amount so appropriated shall be paid 
to the chiefs, to be by them applied to the support of the poor and iuMrm 
of said tribe, in such manner as shall be most beneficial. 

"Article 16. This treaty, after the same shall be ratified by the Presi- 
dent and Senate of the United States, shall lie binding on the contracting 


"In testimony whereof, the said Abel C. Pepper, commissioner as 
aforesaid, and the chiefs, head men and warriors of the Jliami tribe of 


Indiaus, liave hereunto set their hands, at the forks of the Wabash, the 
tith day of November, 1838. 

" (Signed) Abel C. Pepper, Coiiunissiouer. 

"J. B. Rieliardville, 
' ' Paw-la\vn-zo-a\v ( Godf roy ) , 
"No-we-hinu:-frang-<jra\v (Big Leg), 
"0-zan-de-ah (Pophir Tree), 
"Wa-pa-pin-shaw (Black Raccoon), 
' ' Nac-kaw-gnang-gaw, 
' ' Kali-tali-maung-guaw, 

"To-pe-yaw (Francis La Foiintaine), 
' ■ Pe-\va\v-pe-ya\v. 
' ' ]Me-shing-go-me-ja w, 

"Wa\v-pe-maung-(iuah (White Loon), 
' ' Ching-gnaw-ke-aw, 
■ ■ Kil-so-a\v, 
' ' Taw-we-ke-se-aw, 
' ' Mac-quaw-ko-naug, 
"iMa\v-yane-i|ue-yaw (Son of Riehardville), 

"Signed in the presence of John T. Douglass, sub-agent; Allen Hamil- 
ton, secretary to the commissioner; Daniel D. Pratt, assistant secretary to 
the commissioner; J. B. Duret, H. Lasalle, and William Hurlljcrt, Indian 

Schedule op Grants 

Attached to tlie treaty was the following, or schedule, of grants 
referred to in Article 12, showing the quantity of land patented to each 
grantee by the United States : 

"To John B. Riehardville, principal chief: 

"Two sections of land, to include and command the principal falls of 
Pipe creek. 

"Three sections of land, commencing at the mouth of the Salamonie 
i-iver ; thence running three miles down the Wabash river and one mile up 
the Salamonie river. 

"Two sections of land, commencing at the mouth of the ^Mississinewa 
river ; thence down the Wabash river two mil«s and up the Mississinewa 
river one mile. 


"One and one-half sections of land on the Wabash river at the mouth 
of Flat Rock (creek), to include his mills and the privileges thereof. 

"One section of land on the Wabash river, opposite the town of 

"All of which said tracts of land are to be surveyed as directed by the 

said grantee. 

"To Francis Godfroy, a chief, one section of land opposite the town of 
Peru and on the Wabash. 

"One section of land on Little Pipe creek, to include his mill and the 
privileges thereof. 

' ' Four sections of land where he now lives. 

"All of which said tracts of land are to be surveyed as directed by the 

said grantee. 

"To Po-qua Godfroy, one section of land, to run one mile on the 
Wabash river, and to include the improvements where he now lives. 

"To Catherine Godfroy, daughter of Francis Godfroy, and her chil- 
dren, one section of land to run one mile on the Wabash river, and to 
include the improvements where she now lives. 

' ' To Kah-tah-mong-quah, .son of Susan Richardville, one-half section 
of land on the Wabash river below and adjoining the three sections 
granted to John B. Richardville. 

"To Mong-go-sah, son of La Blonde, one-half section of land on the 
Wabash river below and ad.ioining the half section granted to Kah-tah- 

"To Peter Gouin, one section of land on the Sixth ;\lile Reserve, com- 
mencing where the northern line of said reserve intersects the Wabash 
river ; thence down said river one mile and back for quantity. 

"To ilais-shil-gouin-mi-zah, one section of land, to include the Deer 
Lick, alias La Saline, on the creek that enters the Wabash river nearly 
opposite the town of Wabash. 

"To 0-zah-shin-quah, and the wife of Brouillctte, daughters of the 
'Deaf Man,' as tenants in common, one section of land on the Mississinewa 
river, to include the improvements where they now live. 

"To 0-san-di-ah, one section of land where he now lives on the 
Mississinewa river, to include his improvements. 

"To Wah-pi-pin-cha, one section of land on the ^Mississinewa river, 
directly opposite the section granted to 0-sau-di-ah. 

"To Mais-zi-quah, one section of land on the Wabash river, commenc- 
ing at the lower part of the improvement of 'Old Sally,' thence up said 
river one mile and back for quantity. 

"To Tah-ko-nong, one section of land where he now lives on the 
Mississinewa river. 


"To Cha-piiic. one section of land where he now lives on the Ten 
Mile Reserve. 

"To White Loon, one section of land at the crcssing of Longlois 
creek, on the Ten Jlile Reserve, to run up said creek. 

"To Francis Godfroy. one .section of land, to be located where he 
shall direct. 

"To Neh-wah-lin<;'-i|iiali. ime section of land where he now lives on 
the Ten Jlile Reserve. 

"To La Fountain, one section of land south of and ad.ioining the 
section where he now lives, on the Ten IMile Reserve. 

' ' To Seek, one section of land south of the section of land granted to 
Wa-pa-se-pah by the treaty of 1834, on the Ten Mile Reserve. 

"To Black Loon, one section of land on the Six I\Iile Reserve, com- 
mencing at a line which will divide his field on the Wabash river, thence 
up the river one mile and back for quantity. 

"To Duck, one section of land on the Wabash river below and adjoin- 
ing the section granted to Black Loon, and one mile down said river and 
back for quantity. 

"To ]\Ie-cha-ne-qua. a chief, alias Gros-mis, one section of land where 
he now lives. 

"One section to include his iield on the Salamonie river. 

"One and one-half sections, commencing on the Wabash river where 
the road crosses the same from John B. Richardville, Jr. 's; thence down 
the said river to the high bank on Mill creek; thence back so as to include 
a i)art of tlie prairie, to be surveyed as directed by said chief. 

"To Tow-wah-keo-shee, wife of old Pish-a-wa, one section of land 
on tlie Wabash river below and adjoining the half section granted to 

"To Ko-was-see, one section of land, now Seeks reserve, to include 
Ills orchard and improvements. 

"To Black Loon, one section of land on the Six ^lile Reserve, and 
on the Salamonie river, to include his improvements. 

"To the wife of Benjamin Ah-mac-kon-zee-quah, one section of land 
where she now lives, near the prairie, and to include her improvements, 
she being commonly known as Pichoux "s sister. 

"To Pe-she-wah. one section of land above and adjoining the section 
and a half granted to John B. Richardville on Flat Rock creek, and to 
run one mile on the Wabash river. 

"To White Raccoon, one section of land on the Ten Mile Reserve, 
where he may wish to locate the same. 

"To La Blonde, the chief's daughter, one section of land on the 


AVabasli river below and adjoining the section of land granted to Francis 
Godfroy, to be surveyed as she may direct. 

"To Xi-con-zah, one section of lantl on the IMississinewa river, a 
little above the section of land granted to the Deaf ;\Ian's daughters, and 
on the opposite side of the river, to include the pine or evergreen tree, 
and to be surveyed as he may direct. 

"To John B. Richardville, one section of land, to include the Osage 
village on the ilississinewa river, as well as the burying ground of his 
family, to be surve.ved as he ma,v direct. 

"To Kee-ki-lash-e-we-ah, alias Godfroy, one-half section of land back 
of the section granted to the principal chief, opposite the town of 
Wabash, to include the creek. 

"One-half section of land connnencing at the lower corner of the 
section granted to Mais-zi-iiuah, thence half a mile down the Wabash 

■'To Al-lo-lah. one section of land above and ad.joiniug the section 
granted to ilais-shil-gouin-mi-zah, and on the same creek. 

"To John B. Richardville, Jr., one section of land on Pipe creek, above 
and ad.joining the two sections of land granted to the principal chief, 
to be surve.ved as he ma.v direct. 

"To John B. Richardville, one section of land wherever he may choose 
to have the same located. 

"It is understood that all the foregoing grants are to be located 
and surve.ved so as to corresjjond with the public surve.vs as near as 
ma.v be to include the points designated in each grant respectively." 

The last treaty with the iliami Indians was held at the Forks of the 
Wabash on Xovemlier 28. 1840, when Sanniel ililro.v and Allen Hamil- 
ton, connuissioners on the part of the Ihiited States, met the chiefs and 
head men of the tribe and concluded a treat.v by which the iliamis ceded 
all their lauds south of the Wabash river, "not heretofore ceded and 
known as the residue of the I^ig Reserve." and began their preparations 
for removing to a new reservation west of the ilississippi. B.v the terms 
of this treaty the sum of .$25,000 was directed to be paid to John B. 
Richardville and .$15,000 to the acting executor of Francis Godfroy, 
"being amounts of their respective claims against the tribe." At the 
request of old Metosinia, who had lived at one place for eighty years, a 
reservation of fourteen sections of land on the ]\lississinewa river was set 
apart for him and his band. lie died soon after the treaty was concluded 
and the tract was held in ti'ust for his son Meshingomesia until it was 
partitioned among the members of the band by the act of Congress, 
approved June 1, 1872. A few specific reservations south of the river 
were exempted from the provisions of the treaty, and here some of the 


,Mi;miis continued to reside after the majority of the ti'ilie removed to 
Kansas. Some of their desi-endants still live in Jliami and adjoining 
counties. A majority of those living in Miami, Grant, Wabash and 
Huntington counties have become tillei-s of the soil, who have abandoned 
all tiieir ti'ibal customs and adopted the methods of the white people. 
The members of tiie younger generation are intermarrying with tlie 
whites and it is oidy a question of time when this once powerful tribe 
of Indians will be known only to history. 

After the removal of the tribe to the new reservation in Kansas, 
the white man came into full possession of the fertile Wabash valley. 
In the century that has elapsed since Colonel Campbell fought the battle 
of the Mississinewa, which was the first of a chain of events that broke 
the power of the Miamis, great changes have come to this beautiful 
valley. The scream of the factory whistle is heard instead of the howl 
of the wolf or the war-whoop of the savage; the smoke of the council 
tire has been displaced by that which rolls from the chimneys of great 
industrial establishments; the school house has taken the place of the 
tej)ee : the trail through the forest has been broadened into an improved 
highway, over which civilized man skims along in his automobile at the 
rate of thirty or forty miles an hour; along these highways are stretched 
telegraph and telephone lines that bear testimony to a century's progress, 
and coaches, almost palatial in their appointments, propelled bj- steam 
or electricity, traverse the land where once the red man roamed in all 
his fret'doiii and pride. 



Her Capture by Indians in Her Childhood — The Long Search for the 
Lost Sister — Her Life Among the Indians — ^Discovered in Her 
Old Age by Colonel Ewing — Correspondence Betw'een Colonel 
E'ftaNG and Her Family — Visited by Two Brothers and a Sister — 
Refuses to Return to Civilization — Her Death — The Slocum 

Closely interwoven with the history of Miami county is the story of a 
long captivity among the Indians that reads like a romance and vei'ifies 
the truth of the old adage that "Truth is stranger than fiction." In the 
summer of 1777 Jonathan Slocum, with his wife and nine children, and 
accompanied by his father-in-law, Isaac Tripp, removed from Rhode 
Island to Pennsylvania and settled in the beautiful Wyoming valley, not 
far from Wilkes-Barre. The members of the family were Quakers, who 
treated the Indians with great kindness, and in the great massacre of 
July 3, 1778, they were not molested. It happened, however, that Giles 
Slocum, Jonathan's eldest son, fought against the Indians on that 
occasion, and when this became known to the savages they resolved to be 

On November 2, 1778, three Delaware Indians stealthily approached 
the Slocum dwelling, which stood in the edge of a piece of timber. Some 
time before this Nathan Kingsley, a neighbor, had been captured by the 
Indians and his wife and two sons were staying with the Slocums. The 
men were away from home, but the two Kingsley boys were engaged in 
sharpening a knife on a grindstone which stood near the door. The elder 
boy. a lad some fourteen years of age, wore a soldier's coat, which it is 
supposed angered the Indians, as one of them quickly leveled his gun and 
shot the boy dead. Alarmed by the report of the gun, Mrs. Slocum rushed 
to the door and saw the Indian scalping the Kingsley boy with the knife he 
had been grinding. With .some of her children she fled to the woods, while 
her daughter, Mary, about ten years old, carried Joseph, the youngest of 
the family. Little Frances, five j'ears of age, and a lame brother, 
Ebenezer, concealed themselves under the stairway. 





After the Indians liad ransacked the liouse and were about to depart, 
one of them chaneed to notice tlie little girl's feet protruding from 
beneath the stairway. She and lu r brother were dragged from their 
hiding place, and with the two children and the surviving Kingsley boy 
the Indians started for the woods, hoping to make their escape before an 
alarm could reach the Wilkes-Barre fort, which was but a short distance 

When Mrs. Slocuiu saw the Indians carrying away her children, the 
mother love triumphed over fear and she came forth fi'oni her place of 
concealment in the underbrush to plead for her little ones. The savages 
seemed to enjoy her distress and showed no intention of releasing either of 
the children until the frantic mother pointed to the boy's feet and 
exclaimed: "See, the child is lame; he can do thee no good!" The 
Indian let go of Ebenezer, but seized little Prances, threw her over his 
shoulder and, with his two companions, hurried toward the timber. The 
last sight the grief-stricken mother ever had of her daughter was the tear- 
stained face looking back over the shoulder of her captor, one hand 
brushing away the auburn curls from her eyes and the other outstretched 
toward her mother, the childish voice calling "mamma! mamma!" until 
its echoes were lost in the forest. 

The Indians went but a short distance, when they bid in a cave, where 
they could hear the soldiers from the fort as they rode by in pursuit. 
That night they left the cave and made their way through the forest to 
an Indian encampment. Owing to the unsettled conditions upon the 
frontier, immediate pursuit was out of the question, and it is not sur- 
prising that no efforts were made to recover the little captive. 

On December 16, 1778, Jonathan Slocum and his father-in-law were 
fired upon and killed by Indians while feeding cattle within sight of the 
fort. William Slocum, a youth about seventeen years old, was wounded, 
but managed to make his escaj)e. Mrs. Slocum 's anxiety for her little 
daughter was greater than her grief over the death of her husband and her 
father, but it was not until the close of the Revolutionary war that any 
systematic search was begun for the missing child. In 1784 two brothers 
of Prances went to Niagara and made incjuii-y for their sister, offering a 
reward of one imndred guineas for inl'ormation that would lead to her 
recovery. They thought this sum would tempt soTue Indian who knew 
of her whereabouts to tell where she could lie found, hut they were com- 
pelled to return home without any tidings of their lost sister. 

In 1788 the two brothers again made an eflfort to learn something of 
the fate of Prances. They made an extended trip into the interior of 
Ohio, where they secured the symjiathy and coiijid'ation of Indian agents 
and traders and spent several montiis in visiting Indian villages in the 


hope of finding some one who eould tell them what had become of tlieir 
little sister. They offered a reward of $500 for any information, l)ut 
in the end wei'e forced to return home without having obtained the slight- 
est clue. 

Still the mother, rapidly aging under tiie grief caused by the loss of 
her husband, father and daughter, would not relinquish the thougiit that 
her child was still alive. In 1789, when a large number of Indians assem- 
bled at Tioga Point, (now Athens, Pennsylvania,) in response to the 
demand of the government to bring their captives there for identification, 
Mrs. Slocum made a journey to the place, hoping that her missing 
daughter would lie among the prisoners. For several weeks she remained 
there, earnestly gazing into the face of every- girl sixteen years of age, 
but found no one that she eould recognize as her missing child. She 
returned home in deep sorrow over the failure of her mission, l)ut eould 
not be persuaded that her daughter was dead. 

In the early part of 1791 Colonel Proctor was sent by the secretary 
of war to the Indian tribes living along the shores of Lake Brie, and 
the Miamis of the "Wabash, for the purpose of making peace treaties and 
estalilishing friendly relations between them and the whites. Proctor's 
journal for ^March 28, 1791, says: "We proceeded to Painted Post, or 
Cohocton, in the Indian language; dined and refreshed our horses, it 
being the last house we should meet with ere we should reach the Genesee 
river. . . . Here I was joined by a Mr. George Slocum, who followed 
us from Wyoming, to place himself under our protection and assistance, 
until we should reach the Cornplanter's settlement, on the headwaters of 
the Allegheny, to the redeeming of his sister from an unpleasing captivity 
of twelve years, to which end he begged our intermediate interposition." 

Frances Slocum had no brother George and the records show that it 
was Giles Slocum wdio joined Proctor at Painted Post. Evidently this 
brother did not prosecute his investigations very long, as Proctor's journal 
for April 22, 1791, contains the entry: "To cash paid Francis Slocum, a 
white prisoner, 7s. 6d. " Although the name Frances is not correctly 
spelled by Colonel Proctor, it is believed that the "white prisoner" was 
the missing girl, and had her brother remained with the expedition until 
that time he would have no doubt found his sister. It seems strange that 
Proctor, after having so lately been in communication with her lirother, 
did not make some attempt to restore the girl to her family. Megiunis, 
in his "liiography of Frances Slocum," pertinently asks the (|uestion. 
"Was it indifference or stupidity that caused Colonel Proctor to treat 
her ease so lightly?" and adds, "For he must have known who she was 
when he named her, after paying her a small sum of money." 

One of the brothers attended the treaty council at Buffalo, New York, 


in J7!t:!. luit could k'urn nothing of his sister. Four years later Isaac 
Sloeuni and three (if his brothers, in response to their mother's entreaties, 
undertook a more e.xhaustive seareh, penetrating the western wilds as far 
as Detroit and visiting several Indian villages in Canada. Isaac Slocum 
oit'ered five Indian tradei's a reward of $300 if they wmild lind his sister 
and bring her to Detroit, but all in vain. The ne.xt year the brothers 
again made a trip to the northwest, but with no better success. 

Mrs. Slocum died on ]May 6, 1807, aged seventy-one years, but almost 
with her last breath she asserted the belief that Frances was still living 
and enjoined her childi-en to continue the (|uest for their lost sister. 
Nearly twenty years hitrr there came a report that an Indian called 
Bet ween-t he-Logs had been eouverted at the Wyandot mission, where 
Sandusky, Ohio, now stands, and that he had a white woman for a wife. 
Again hope came to the Slocums. This might be Frances. James Slocum, 
accompanied by a nephew, made the journey to the mission in 18'2(), but 
it was only to encounter another disaijpointnu'ut. 

* In the meantime how fared it with the little captive? • Frances was 
treated with the utmost kindness by the Indians. Her red hair made her 
almost an object of veneration among them. When she was fii'St taken 
from her home the three braves took turns in carrying her, and when they 
stopped at the first Indian encampment she was fully protected by her 
captors from abuse. Meginnis says this stopping place was undoubtedly 
Tioga Point, at the mouth of the Chemung river, where Athens is now 
situated, and continues: 

"Here the little captive was probably kept for some time; and it was 
here, perhaps, that she was first decked out in gaudy Indian costume, as 
a means of distracting her thoughts as soon as possible from her home 
and those she had left behind. Soon after this she was turned over to 
Tuck Horse and his wife, and adopted as his daughter to supply the place 
of one of similar age who hatl died. It is much regretted that there is 
nothing on record to show who this Indian was who bore such a peculiar 
name. We are informed that hi' was a Delaware, but it is not likely that 
he was an Indian of much distinction, or we would liave hrard iimre about 

It seems that she did not rrnuiin long as a member of this family, as 
in telling her own story she says: "Early one morning this Tuck Horse 
came and took me, and dressed my hair in the Indian way, and then 
painted my face and skin. He then dressed nic in beautiful wampuiii 
beads, and nuide me look, as I thought, very fine. I was much i)leased 
with the beautiful wami)uin. We then lived on a hill, and I remember he 
took me by the hand and led me down to the river side to a house where 
lived an old man anil woman. They had once severid i-hildren. but now 


they were all gone — either killed iu battle, or having died very young. 
When the Indians thus lose their children they often adopt some child as 
their own, and treat it in all respects like their own. This is the reason 
why they so often carry away the children of the white people. I was 
brought to these old people to have them adopt me if they would. They 
seemed unwilling at first, but after Tuck Horse had talked to them awhile, 
they agreed to it. and this was my home. Tliey gave me the name of 
We-let-a-wasli, which was the name of their youngest child, whom they 
had lately buried." 

The Indians always treated her kindly. While the Miamis and IJela- 
wares were living together Frances was married to a Delaware brave, but 
he mistreated her and finally left her, going with a portion of his tribe to 
the new reservation west of the Mississippi river. Subsequently she 
became the wife of She-po-con-ah, a Miami chief, commonly called the 
Deaf Man. and by this marriage she became the mother of two sons and 
two daughters. The two .sons died in childhood, but the daughters both 
grew to maturity and married, Ke-ke-nok-esh-wa (Cut Finger) becoming 
the wife of Rev. Jean Baptiste Brouillette, and 0-zah-sliin-(iuah (Yellow 
Leaf) the wife of Rev. Peter Bundy. 

Upon her marriage to She-po-con-ah, Frances became a Miami and 
took the name of Ma-con-a-quah, which means "a young female bear," or 
a "female lion," and was probably adopted on account of her great 
strength and activity at that period. She could handle the lariat with 
great .skill and thought nothing of lassoing a pony and bringing him under 
subjection, and could run as fast as most of the men of her trilie. 

Late in the year 1834, or early in the year 1835, Colonel George W. 
Ewing, an Indian trader, of Logansport. who had a lai-ge trade with the 
Miamis, stopped for the night at the Deaf ..Man's village, situated on the 
Mississinewa river a few miles above its mouth. He was given the hospi- 
tality of an Indian home, the mistress of which was a respectable Indian 
woman, and during the evening he noticed that her children and grand- 
children treated her with great respect and obedience. Tired out with 
his day's travel, Ewing retired soon after eating his supper to a bed of 
skins and blankets that had been prepared for him in one corner of the 
cabin. But he did not go to sleep. All the members of the family soon 
after disappeared, except the old woman, who occupied her.self for a time 
in attending to some oi-dinary household duties. As she moved about the 
cabin the trader watched her, noticing something peculiarly striking in 
her appearance, especially her hair, until he began to suspect that this 
was a white woman. His suspicion was soon afterward confirmed, when 
one of her arms was accidentally bared and he saw that the skin above the 
elbow was white. He then began a conversation with her in the Miami 


tongue — for she could speak l)ut little English — and on gaining her con- 
tidenee to some extent asked her pointedly il' she was not a white woman. 

The (|uestion apparently startled her and at first she gave an evasive 
answer. ]5ut Colonel Ewing made her understand tliat he was her friend 
and she finally told him her story, or what she could remember of her 
early life. She said she had been carried away from near some town on 
the Sus(iuehanna river when she was a little girl, that she thought her 
father's name was Sloeum and that he was a Quaker. 

Upon arriving at his home the next day Colonel Ewing told his mother 
what he had learned. She advised him to write to the woman's friends in 
Pennsylvania. This was almost an impossible task, as P^ranees could not 
remember where the.y lived, further than it was neai- some town on the 
Sus(|uelianna i-iver, and nearly three score years had elap.sed since she 
iiad been carried away from her home. He finally remembered that 
Lancaster was an old town, near the Suscjuehanna, and decided to write 
to the jiostmaster thei-e, hoping that through this medium the relatives 
of the "Lost Sister of Wyoming" might learn of her existence. Follow- 
ing is Colonel Ewing 's letter : 

"Logansport, Ind.. Jan. 20, 1835. 

"Dear Sir: In the hope that some good may result from it, I have 
taken tiiis means of giving to your fellow-citizens — say the descendants 
of the early settlers of the Sus(iuehanna — the following information; and 
if there be any now living whose name is Sloeum, to them, 1 hope, the 
following may be communicated through the public prints of .your place: 

"There is now living near this place, an aged white woman, who a 
few days ago told me. while I lodged in the camp one night, that she 
was taken away from her father's house, on or near the Susciuehanna, 
when she was very young — say from five to eight years old, as she thinks — 
by the Delaware Indians, who were then hostile toward the whites. She 
says her father's name was Sloeum, that he was a Quaker, rather small 
in stature, and wore a large brimmed hat ; was of sandy hair and light 
complexioned and nuich freckled; that he lived about half a mile from a 
town where there wa.s a fort ; that they lived in a wooden house of two 
stories high, and had a spring near the house. She says three Delawares 
came to the house in the daytime, when all were absent but herself, and 
perhaps tw-o other children ; her father and brothers were absent working 
in the field. The Indians carried her oflF, and she was adopted into a 
family of Delawares, who raised her and treated her as their own child. 
They died about forty years ago, somewhere in Ohio. She was then 
married to a Miami, by whom she had four children ; two of them are 
now living — they are both daughters — and she lives with them. Her 
'lusband is dead ; slie is old and feeble, and thinks she will not live lone. 


"Thuse considerations induced her to give the present history of her- 
self, which she woiiki never do before, fearing that her kindred would 
come and force her away. She has lived long and happy as an Indian, 
and, but for her color, would not be suspected of being anything else than 
such. She is very respectable and wealthy, sober and honest. Her name 
is without reproach. She says her father had a large family, say eight 
children in all — six older than herself, one younger, as well as she can 
recollect — and she doubts not there are yet living many of their descend- 
ants, but seems to think that all her brothers and sisters must be dead, as 
she is very old herself, not far from the age of eighty. She thinks she was 
taken prisoner before the last two wars, which must mean the Revolution- 
ary war, as Wayne's war and the late war have been since that one. She 
has entirely lost her mother tongue, and speaks only as an Indian, which 
I also understand, and she gave me a full history of herself. 

"Her own Christian name she has forgotten, but says her father's 
name was Slocum. and he was a Quaker. She also recollects that it was 
upon the Sus(iuehanna river that they lived, but does not recollect the 
name of the town near which they lived. I have thought that from this 
letter you might cause something to be inserted in the newspapers of 
your country that might possibly catch the eye of some of the descendants 
of the Slocum family, who have knowledge of a girl having been carried 
off by the Indians some seventy years ago. This they might know from 
family tradition. If so. and they will come here, I will carry them where 
they may see the oliject of my letter alive and happy, though old and far 
advanced in life. 

"I can form no idea wlierealiout ujiou the Susi|uehanna river this 
family could have lived at that early period, namely, about the time of 
the Revolutionary war, but perhaps you can ascertain more about it. If 
so, I hope you will interest yourself, and, if possible, let her brothers and 
sisters, if any be alive— if not, their children— know where they may once 
more see a relative whose fate has been wrapped in mystery for seventy 
years, and for whom her bereaved and afflicted parents doubtless shed 
many a bitter tear. They have long since found their graves, though their 
lost child they never found. I have been much affected with the disclosure, 
and hope the surviving friends may obtain, through your goodness, the 
infornuitioii I desire for them. If I can be of any service to them, they 
may command me. In the meantime, I hope you will excuse me for the 
freedom I have taken with you, a total stranger, and Ix-lieve me to be, sir, 
with much respect, 

"Your ol)edient servant, 

"George W. Ewing." 


Colonel Ewing was somewhat mistaken as to the age of Fi-auces and the 
time she had been in captivity. At the time his letter was written she was 
about sixty-two years old and had dwelt among the Indians for approxi- 
mately lifty-seven years. W Inii tlie letter was received by Mrs. Alary 
Diekson, then postmistress at Lancaster and also the owner of a news- 
])apt'r called tiic Laiicast/ r Int< lli(jrnccr, instead of publishing it she east 
it aside and for about two years it lay among a lot of old papers that 
were considereil of no value. In March, 1837, John W. Forney became 
one of the editors and publishers of the paper and soon afterward the 
lettei' was handed to him by one who had aceidently found it a short time 
iiefore. Mr. Forney published the letter in the Intelligencer, in a "special 
temperance edition," copies of which were sent to every clergyman in 
Pennsylvania. Rev. Sanniel Bowman, an Episcopal minister, who had 
lived at one time in ^Vilkes-Barre, and who knew the story of Frances 
Slocum. nuiilcd one of the papers to Joseph Slocum, at Wilkes-Barre. 
Under date of August 8, 1837, Jonathan J. Slocum, a son of Joseph, wrote 
to Colonel Ewing as follows : 
"Geo. \V. Ewing, Esq., 

"Dear Sir: At the suggestion of my father and other relations, I 
have taken the liberty to write to you, although an entire stranger. 

"■ We have received, but a few days since, a letter written by you to a 
gentleman in Lancaster, of this state, upon a subject of deep and intense 
interest to our fanuly. How the matter should have lain so long wrapped 
in obscurity we cannot conceive. An aunt of mine — sister of my father — 
was taken away when five years old, by the Indians, and since then we 
have only had vague and indistinct rumors upon the subject. Your 
letter we deem to have entirely revealed the whole matter, and set every- 
thing at rest. The description is so perfect, and the incidents (with the 
exception of her age) so correct, that we feel confident. 

"Steps will be taken innnediately to investigate the matter, and we will 
endeavor to do all in our power to restore a lost relative who has been 
sixty yeai'S in Indian bondage. 

"Youi' friend and oiiedient servant, 

"Jno. J. SUJCIIM." 

Colonel Ewing had not forgotten the litter written by him in January, 
183."), and no doubt had often wondered as to its fate. Upon the receipt 
of Mr. Slocum's letter he at once sent the following reply : 

"Logansport, hul., August 26, 1837. 
"Jno. J. Slocum. Ksi|., Wilkes-Barre, 

"Dear Sir: 1 have the pleasure of acknowledging the receipt of your 
letter of the 8th instant, and in answer can add, that the female I spoke of 


in January. 1835. is still alive; nor can I for a moment doubt but that she 
is the identical relative that has been so long lost to your family. 

"I feel much gratified to think that I have been thus instrumental in 
disclosing to yourself and friends such facts in relation to her as will 
enable you to visit her and satisfy yourselves more fully. She recovered 
from the temporary illness liy which she was afflicted about the time I 
spent the night with her in January. 1835. and which was, no doubt, the 
cause that induced her to speak so freely of her early captivity. 

"Although she is now. by long habit, an Indian, and her manners and 
customs precisely theirs, yet she will doulitless be happy to see any of you, 
and I myself will take great pleasure in accompanying you to the house. 
Shoidd you come out for that purpose, I advise you to repair directly 
to this place : and should it so liappcn that I should be absent at the time, 
you will find others who can take you to her. Bring with you this letter; 
show it to James T. .Miller, of Peru, Ind.. a small town not far from this 
place. He knows her well. He is a young man whom we have rai.sed. He 
.speaks the Miami tongue and will accompany you if I should not be at 
home. Inquire for the old white woman, mother-in-law to Brouillette, 
living on the Mississinewa river, about ten miles above its mouth. There 
you will tind the long lost sister of your father, and, as before stated, you 
will not have to blush on her account. She is highly respectable, and her 
name as an Indian is without reproach. Her daughter, too, and her son- 
in-law, Brouillette, who is also a half-blood, being part P^rench, are both 
very respectable and interesting people — none in the nation are more so. 
As Indians they live well, and will ])e pleased to see you. Should you 
visit here this fall, I may be absent, as I purpose starting for New York 
in a few days, and shall not be back till some time in October. But this 
need not stop you : for. although 1 should be gratified to see you, yet it 
will be sufficient to learn that I have furthered your wishes in this truly 
interesting manner. 

"The very kind manner in which you have been pleased to speak of 
me shall be fully appreciated. 

"There are perhaps men who could have heard her story unmoved; 
but for me, I could not ; and when I reflected that there was, perhaps, 
still lingering on this side of the grave some brother or sister of that ill- 
fated woman, to whom such information would be deeply interesting, I 
resolved on the course which I adopted, and entertained the fond hope 
that my letter, if ever it should go before the public, would attract the 
attention of some one interested. In this it seems, at last, I have not been 
disappointed, although I have long since supposed it had failed to effect 
the object for which I wrote it. Like you. I I'egret that it should have been 
delayed so long, nor can I conceive how any one should neglect to publish 
such a letter. 


"As to tlip afje of this female, I think she horsi^lf is mistaken, and that 
she is not so old as she imagines herself to be. Indeed, I entertain no 
doubt hut that she is the same person that your family have mourned after 
for more than half a century past. 

"Your obedient humble servant, 

" George W. Ewing." 

In due time Tolonel Ewing 's letter reached the waiting members of 
tlie fjimiiy at Wilkcs-Harre. Arrangements were at once commenced for 
•loseph Slocum to go to the home of his sister, Mrs. Mary Towne, in 
central Ohio, and with her proceed to Peru, Indiana, while his brother 
Isaac, who lived near Sandusky, was to join them there as soon as possible. 
As the distance from Sandusky to the Miami village was much shorter 
than that which Joseph and ^Irs. Towne had to travel, he arrived several 
days in advance of his bi'othcr and sister. His anxiety to meet the sister, 
who had so long been mourned as lost, was so great that he could not wait 
for the arrival of liis brother and sister. Accompanied by James T. Miller 
as interpreter, he repaired to the house of Frances, where he was received 
with that stolid inditference peculiar to the Indian. She manifested 
neither pleasure nor surprise at his coming and seemed rather reluctant 
to tell anything of herself to a stranger. Before she was captured in her 
childhood, while she and one of her brothers were playing in the black- 
smith shoj) one day. her brother struck the fore finger of her left hand 
with a hammer and inflicted such an injury that the nail was completely 
destroyed. As Isaac conversed with the old woman he kept watching her 
hands. At last, seeing the marked finger, he took hold of her hand and 
asked how it came to be in that condition. 

"My brother struck it with a hammer in the shop, a long time ago, 
before I was carried away," came the answer, but without any show of 

Isaac Slocum was now convinced that this was his sister. Sadly he 
returned to Peru to await the coming of Joseph and Mrs. Towne. They 
arrived a few days later and the three, with Mr. iMiller and James B. 
Fulwiler. went to the house of the old woman whose long life among the 
Indians liad made her an alien to her own race. Mr. Fulwiler afterward 
said that Frances was ' ' as cold as an iceberg, ' ' and that her reception of 
her relatives so affected him that he was compelled to leave the room. 
The injured finger was again examined and with much persuasion she 
was induced to tell them something of her life. Her story corresponded in 
all the essentials to that she had told Colonel Ewing, nearly three years 
before. She had forgotten her Christian name and when asked if she 
would remember it if she should hear it she answered, "It is a long time; 
I do not know." 


Was it Frances ? ' ' asked one of the party. For the first time during 
the interview something like emotion seemed to move her hitherto 
expressionless features, and after a few brief moments a faint smile 
illumined her face as she exclaimed, ' ' Yes, Franca, Franca ! ' ' 

All doubts were now removed. This indeed was the little auliurn 
haired sister that had been taken from her home in the Wyoming valley 
sixty-four years before. The company then proposed to Frances that 
she, with her son-in-law and daughters, accompany them to Peru, but she 
declined to give an answer until she could consult Chief Godfroy. The 
chief advised her to accept the invitation and she promised to visit them 
the next Sunday and dine with them at the hotel. When they arrived 
and were conducted into the hotel, before any intimacy could be estab- 
lished, it was necessary that a formal pledge of friendship should be given 
and received, according to the custom of the Miami Indians. One of the 
daughters therefore advanced to the table and laid upon it a bundle 
wrapped in a clean, white cloth. Through the interpreter she then ex- 
plained that it was a pledge of their confidence and friendship. Instructed 
by Mr. Miller, Mrs. Towne accepted the pledge in the same solemn and 
formal manner, and when the bundle was opened it was found to contain 
a hind quarter of a deer, which had no doubt been killed for the occasion. 
Through the medium of this ceremony confidence was established and the 
visitors conversed more freely than when the brothers and sister visited 
Frances in her home. Meginnis says: "The food cooked by civilized 
methods did not agree with them (the vi-sitors) and they did not relish it. 
The circumstances and surroundings had a depressing effect upon Frances 
and she sought relief in accordance with the customs of savage life. She 
slipped away (juietly, and a few minutes afterwards was found with her 
blanket pulled over her head, lying on the stoop fast asleep." 

When it was proposed that Frances' story should be reduced to writing 
she at first objected, until the reasons for such a proceeding were explained 
to her by the interpreter. She then told her story, the main points of 
which correspond to the facts as narrated in this chapter. At the con- 
clusion of her story, her brothers and sister urged her to return home with 
them, promising her a home and a share of all they possessed. 

' ' No, I cannot, ' ' said Frances. ' ' I have always lived with the Indians ; 
they have always used me very kindly ; I am used to them. The Great 
Spirit has always allowed me to live with them, and I wish to live and die 
with them. Your wah-puh-mone (looking-glass) may be longer than 
mine, but this is my home. I do not wish to live any better, or anywhere, and I think the Great Spirit has permitted me to live so long because 
I have always lived with the Indians. I should have died sooner if I had 
left them. My husband and my boys are buried here and I cannot leave 


them. On his dying day my husband ciiarged me not to leave the Indians. 
I have a house and hirge lands, two daughters, a son-in-law, three grand- 
children and everything to make me eoinl'ortable, why should 1 go and 
be like a fish out of water?" 

In this determination she was supported hy lier son-in-law and daugh- 
ters, and when her relatives then asked her to go with them merely for 
a visit, promising to allow her to return to her ehildren, she answered : 

"I cannot, I cannot. I am an old tree. I cannot move about. I was 
a sapling when they took me away. It is all gone past. 1 am afraid I 
should die and never come back. I am happy here. I siudl die and lie 
in that graveyard, and they will raise the pole at my grave with the white 
flag on it, and the Great Spirit will know where to find me. 1 should not 
be hapi)y with my white relatives. I am glad enough to see them, Init I 
cannot go, I cannot go. I have done." 

It was this positive refusal of Frances to return to the home of her 
brothers and sisters tiiat inspired ^Mrs. E. L. Schermerhorn to write the 
following poem, which was pulilished under the title of "The White 
Rose of Miami :" 

"Let me stay at my home, in tlie beautiful West, 
Where I played when a child — in my age let me rest; 
Where the bright prairies l)loom and the wild waters play, 
In the home of my heart, dearest friends, let me stay. 

"O, here let me stay, where my Chief, in the pride 
Of a brave warrior youth, wandered forth by my side ; 
Where lie laid at my feet the young hunter's best prey, 
Where 1 roamed a wild huntress — 0, friends, let me stay! 

"Let mc stay where the prairies I've oft wandered through. 
While my moccasins brushed from the flowers the dew — 
Where my warrior would pluck the wild l)lossoms and say 
His Wlrite Rose was the fairest — O, here let me stay ! 

"(), liiTf let me stay 1 where tlie briirlit plumes from tlir wing 
Of the bii'd that his ari'ow bad ])iereed, lie would bi-ing; 
Where, in parting for battle, softly would say, 
' 'Tis to shield thee I fight' — O, with iiim let me stay ! 

"Let me stay, though tiie strength of my ('hieftain is o'er, 
Though his w-arriors he leads to the battle no more; 
He loves through the woods, a wild hunter to stray. 
His heart clings to home — O, then, here let me stay ! 


"Let me stay where my children in childhood have played, 
Where through the green forest, they often have strayed ; 
They never could bend to the white man's cold sway, 
For their hearts are of fire — 0, here let them stay! 

"You tell me of leaves of the Spirit that speak ; 
But the Spirit I own, in the bright stars I seek; 
In the prairie, in the forest, the water's wild play, 
I see Him, I hear Him — 0, then, let me stay!" 

In the fall of 18;^(t Joseph Sloeum, accompanied by his two daughters 
— Hannah and Harriet — the oldest and youngest of his seven children, 
again visited Frances at her home near Peru. This time the "lost sister" 
received her relatives with more cordiality. A colored man lived on 
her place as interpreter and tliey learned more of her history. Hannah 
was the wife of Ziba Bennett and kept a diary in which she recorded the 
principal events of the journey. The following extract from this diary 
gives this description of Frances Sloeum at that time : 

"My aunt is of small stature, not very much bent ; had her hair clubbed 
behind in calico, tied with worsted ferret ; her hair is somewhat gray ; 
her eyes a bright chestnut, clear and sprightly for one of her age; her 
face is very much wrinkled and weather-lieaten. She has a scar on her 
left cheek received at an Indian dance; her skin is not as dark as you 
would expect from her age and constant exposure; her teeth are remark- 
ably good. Her dress was a blue calico short gown, a white Mackinaw 
blanket, somewhat soiled by con.stant wear ; a fold of blue broadcloth 
lapped around her, red cloth leggins and buckskin moccasins. ' ' 

Frances Sloeum died on ]\Iarc]i 9, 1847. and was buried on a beautiful 
knoll across the road from her liouse. aliout nine miles southeast of the 
city of Peru. Here her remains lay in an unmarked and neglected grave 
for a little more than half a century. In 1899 Hon. James F. Stutesman, 
of Peru, visited the "Bundy liurying ground," as the little graveyard is 
called, and upon seeing the neglected resting place of this remarkable 
woman, he decided to make an effort to have it marked by an appropriate 
monument. To that end he got into correspondence with meml)ers of 
the Sloeum family scattered through Pennsylvania. New York, Ohio, 
^Michigan and Indiana. As a result of his work a monument committee 
was organized with Elliott T. Sloeum, of Detroit, chairman; Dr. Charles 
E. Sloeum, of Defiance, Ohio, secretary ; Mrs. Mary Sloeum Murphy, of 
Converse, Indiana, treasurer. Other members of the committee wei*e 
George Sloeum Bennett, of \Vilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania; Joseph Sloeum 
Chahoon, of Philadelphia; Eliza Sloeum Rogers, also of Philadelphia; 



Frank Slocum, of ^liniieapolis, Aliuuesota; Frauk L. Slocuiu, of Pitts- 
burgh, Pennsylvania; Frauk Sloeuiii Litzeuberger, of Middletown, 
Indiana; Levi D. Sloeum, of Carboudale, Pennsylvania; Joseph W. 
Slocum, of Scranton, Pennsylvania ; Joseph A. Kenny, of Converse, 
Indiana ; and James F. Statesman, of Peru, Indiana. 

A fund of $700 was raised for the purpose of creeling a Hionuiiii-iit 
and iuL-losing tlie l)urying ground with an iron fence, and the purchase of 
both monument and fence was made of au Ohio firm. After they had 
lieen placed in position and the cemetery cleared of some of its weeds and 
rubbish, the monument was dedicated on May 17, 1900, in the presence of 
more than 3,000 people, many of whom had come from far distant points 
to witness the ceremonies. Arrangements for taking care of the multitude 
bad been made by Mr. Stutesman, the Bundys and others living in the 
neighborhood. Elliott T. Slocum presided and Dr. Charles E. Slocum, 
compiler of a history of the family, delivered the principal address. At 
the conclusion of his address the monument was unveiled by Misses 
N'ictoria Bundy and i\Iabel Kay Bundy, great-granddaughtei's of Frances 
Slocum. Short speeches were then made by George Sloeum Bennett, 
Gabriel Godfroy, Richard DeHart, of Lafayette, Indiana; JMajor 
McFadin, of Logansport, who had seen Frances Slocum in her old age; 
and Hon. James F. Stutesman. Mrs. Lurena King jMiller, of Washing- 
ton, D. C, read an original poem on the life of Frances Slocum, which 
was well received. 

The Slocum monument is of white bronze, eight feet and six inches 
in height, and standing upon a stone base four feet square. On the four 
sides of the monument are the following inscriptions : 

"1. Frances Sloeum, a child of English descent, was born in Warwick, 
Rhode Island, in March, 1773 ; was carried into captivitj' from her father's 
house at Wilkes-Barre, Pa., November 2, 1778, by Delaware Indians soon 
after the Wyoming massacre. Her brothers gave persistent search, but 
did not find her until September 2, 1837. 

"2. When inclined by a published letter describing an aged white 
wiiman in the ^liami Indian village here, two brothers and a sister visited 
this place and identified her. She lived near here thirty-two years with 
the Indian name — Ma-con-a-quah. She died on this ridge, March 9, 1847, 
and was given a Christian burial. 

"3. Frances Slocum became a stranger to her mother tongue; she 
became a stranger to her brethren, and an alien to her mother's children 
through her captivity. See Psalms Ixix, 8. 

' ' This monument was ei-ected by the Slocums and others, who deemed 
it a pleasure to contribute, and was unveiled by them with public cere- 
monies, May 17, 1900. 

roi. 1—5 


"4. She-po-eoii-ah. a Miami Indian chief, husband of Frances Slocuin 
— Ma-con-a-quah, died here in 1833, at an advanced age. Their adult 
children were : 

''Ke-ke-nok-esh-wah, wife of Rev. Jean Baptiste Brouillette, died 
March 13, 1847, aged forty-seven years, leaving no children. 

"O-zah-shin-quah, or Jane, wife of Rev. Peter Bundy, died January 
25, 1877, aged sixty-two years, leaving a husband and nine children. " 

Volumes have been written on the subject of Frances Slocum, but the 
foregoing, it is believed, touches upon every important phase of this 
extraordinary instance of captivity by Indians and the complete aliena- 
tion of the captive from her own people. In all the liistory of Indian 
depredations and atrocities during the early days, there has not been 
recorded another such case as that of the "Lost Sister of Wyoming," 
' ' The White Rose of the Miami. ' ' 



Early Explorations ln the New World — French Posts in the 
Interior — Spanish Claims — Conflicting Interests op France and 
England — French and Indian War — Indiana Part op the British 
Possessions — Pontiac — GECtRGE Rogers Clark's Conquest of the 
Northwest — Indiana a Part of Virginia — The Northwest Terri- 
tory — Campaigns op Harmar, St. Clair and Wayne — Treaty of 
Greenville — Indiana Territory Organized — Treaties op Cession — 
Tecumseh and the Prophet — Battle of Tippecanoe — War op 1812 
— Battle of the Mississinewa — Battle Ground Association — 
Indiana Admitted as a State — Location of the Seat of Govern- 

Miami county was not called into existence as a separate political 
division until 1834, but the events leading up to its settlement and 
organization had their beginning more than a century and a half prior 
to that date. It is therefore deemed proper to notice the work of the 
early explorers, particularly those who visited Indiana. Not long after 
the discovery of the New World by Christopher Columbus, in 1492, three 
European nations were busy in their attempts to establish claims to 
territory' in America. Spain first laid claim to the peninsula of Florida, 
whence expeditions were sent into the interior; the English based their 
claims upon the discoveries made by the Cabots, farther northward along 
the Atlantic coast; and the French claimed Canada by reason of the 
expeditions of Jacques Cartier in 1534-35. 

Spain planted a colony in Florida in 1565 ; the French settled Port 
Royal, Nova Scotia, in 1605; the English colony at Jamestown, Virginia, 
was established in 1607, and Quebec was founded by the French in 1608. 
The French then extended their settlements up the St. Lawrence river and 
along the shores of Lakes Ontario and Erie. Before the middle of the 
seventeenth century Jesuit missionaries and fur traders had pushed their 
way westward into the heart of the Indian country. In 1660 a mission 
was established by Father ^lesnard at or near Green Bay, Wisconsin, and 
the same year Father Claude Allouez made his tirst pilgi-image into the 



iuterior. Upon his returu to Quebec, two years later, he urged the 
authorities there to encourage the establishment of permanent missions 
among the Indians, each mission to be accompanied by a colony of French 
immigrants, but it does not appear that his recommendations were 
accepted, or that any well defined effort was made to colonize the country 
he had visited. After a short stay in Quebec, Father Allouez made a 
second journey into the western wilds and this time he was accompanied 
by Claude Dablou and James Marquette. 

In 1671 Father Marquette founded the Huron mission at Point St. 
Ignace and the next year the region south of the mission was visited by 
Allouez and Dablon. In their explorations they met the chiefs and head 
men of the Indian tribes dwelling near the head of Lake Michigan and 
are supposed to have traversed that portion of Indiana lying north of the 
Kankakee river. These Jesuit missionaries were pi-obably the first white 
men to set foot upon Indiana soil, though some writers state that Robert 
Cavelier, Sieur de la Salle, crossed the northern part of the state on the 
occasion of his first expedition to the Mississippi river in 1669. This is 
doubtless an error, as in the Jesuit Relations there i« an appai'entlj- well 
authenticated account of La Salle's having descended the Ohio river in 
1669-70, and in the report of his voyage down that stream mention is 
made of "a very large river (the Wabash) coming into it from the north." 

La Salle did cross the northwest corner of the state, however, in 1671 
or 1672, and in 1673 IMarquette and Joliet crossed over from Mackinaw 
to the Mississippi river, which they descended as far as the Indian village 
called Akamsea, near the mouth of the Arkansas river, when they returned 
to Canada. In 1679 La Salle established Fort iliami. • ' at the mouth of the 
St. Joseph river of Lake Michigan, then called the River Miamis. " This 
fort was destroyed by deserters in the spring of 1680, but the following 
January it was rebuilt "on the right bank of the river at its mouth." 
A year later La Salle succeeded in descending the Mississippi river to its 
mouth, where on April 9, 1682, he laid claim to all the territory drained 
by the great river and its tributaries in the name of France, giving to this 
vast domain the name of Louisiana, in honor of the French king. This 
claim included the present state of Indiana. 

Spain claimed the interior of the continent on account of the dis- 
coveries and explorations of Ponce de Leon and Hernando de Soto, and 
the English laid claim to the same region because of the royal grants of 
land "extending westward to the South Sea." The claims of both these 
nations were ignored by the French, who began the work of building a 
line of posts through the Mississippi valley to connect their Canadian 
settlements with those near the mouth of the great river. In July, 1701, 
Cadillac founded the post of Detroit. The next year Sieur Juchereau and 


Father Jlermct wei'e coiiiiiiissioiied to establish a post at or near the 
mouth of the Oliio river. Some writers have attempted to show that 
this post was located upon the site now occupied by the city of Vincenues, 
Indiana, but the known facts do not bear out such a statement. 

Historians seem to be somewhat in the dark as to when the first post 
was established within the present state of Indiana. There is a vague 
account of a post havin^r been founded as e;ii-ly as 1672. where the city 
of Fort Wayne is now situated, lint this is probably an error, as old 
maps of the Wabash valley bearing date of 1684 show no posts within 
the present limits of the state. (Joodrich & Tuttle's History of Indiana 
says: "It is certain tliat Post Miami (Fort Wayne) was established in 
1705." liut tile aiitliors give no corroborative evidence that such was the 

Ouiatenou was situated on the Wabash I'iver. eighteen miles below the 
mouth of the Tippecanoe river and not far from the present city of 
Lafayette. Says Smith: "The best record is that this was the first post 
established in what is now Indiana liy the French. No effort was ever 
made to plant a colony there, but it became in time quite a prominent 
trading point. There are reasons why this i)oint should have been selected 
as the best possible place for the establishment of a post. It was the 
largest village of the Ouiatenon Indians, was in the center of the beaver 
country, and was easily ae<'essihle. Tt was, also, the head of navigation, 
so to speak, on the Wabash. That is, it was where the cargoes had to be 
transferred, owing to the rapids in the river, from the large canoes which 
were used on the lowei- Wabash, to the smaller ones that were used 
between Ouiatenon and the portage to the Maumee. For trading purposes 
no better place on the Wabash could have been selected." (History of 
Indiana, j). 17.) 

X'ineennes is the oklest permanent settlement in the state, but the 
date when it was founded is veiled in the same uncertainty as that which 
attaches to other early posts. There is a tradition that .some French 
traders located there about 1690, married Indian wives and in time 
iiKhKed othei- Frenchmen to locate there, but La Harpe 's .ioumal, which 
gives a ratliei' iletailed account of the events that occurred in the Jlissis- 
sippi and lower Ohio valleys from 1698 to 1722. makes no mention of such 
a settlement. David Thomas, of New York, visited Vincennes about the 
time that Indiana was admitted into the Union as a state, and after making 
investigations wrote: "About the year 1690 the French traders first 
visited Vincennes, at that time a town of the Piankeshaw Indians, called 
Cip-pe-kaugh-ke. Of these the former obtained wives and raised families. 
In the year 1734 several French families emigrated from Canada and 


settled at this place. The first governor, or commandant, was M. St. 
Vincent, after whom the town was named. ' ' 

In another place in his manuscript Thomas says that, ' ' About the year 
1702, a party of French from Canada descended the Wabash river and 
established posts in several places on its banks. The party was com- 
manded by Captain St. Vincennes, who made this his principal place of 
deposit, which went for a long time by no other name than the Post." 

The reader will notice the diiference in the name of the founder as 
given by Thomas. In one place he says it was M. St. Vincent, and in 
another it is given as Captain St. Vincennes. His real name was Francois 
Margane (or Morgan) de Vincennes, but the exact date when he first 
visited the Wabash valley is not definitely settled. Dillon, in his History 
of Indiana, says: "It is probable that before the year 1719, temporary 
trading posts were erected at the sites of Fort Wayne, Ouiateuon and 
Vincennes. These posts had, it is believed, been often visited by traders 
before the year 1700." 

General Ilarmar, who visited Vincennes in 1787, wrote at that time to 
the secretary of war that the inhabitants informed him the post was 
established sixtj' years before. This would indicate that the town was 
founded about 1727, which is probably not far from the correct date. 
Monette says Vincennes was settled in 1735, and Bancroft agrees that 
date is ' ' not too earl.v. ' ' 

The conflicting claims of the English and French culminated in what 
is known in history as the French and Indian war. In 1759 Quebec was 
captured by the British and the following year the French government 
surrendered all the posts in the interior. Soon after the surrender ilajor 
Rogers, an English officer, took possession of the post at Detroit and sent 
detachments t© the posts at the confluence of the St. Joseph and St. Mary's 
rivers (Fort Wayne) and Ouiatenon. By the treaty of Paris, February 
10, 1763, all that part of Louisiana lying east of the Mississippi river was 
ceded to Great Britain and what is now the State of Indiana became 
thereby subject to British domination. 

In April, 1763, a great council of Indians was held near Detroit, at 
which the wily Ottawa chief, Pontiac, known as "high priest and keeper 
of the faith," revealed to his fellow chiefs the will of the Great Master of 
Life, as expounded by the Delaware prophet, and called upon them to 
join him in a grand uprising for the recovery of their hunting grounds 
and the preservation of their national life. Along the Atlantic coast the 
white man held undisputed control, but the broad Ohio vaUey and the 
region about the Great Lakes were still in the hands of the Indians, 
Between these two sections the Allegheny mountains formed a natural 
boundary, behind which Pontiac determined to assert the red man's 


supremacy. Taught hy the recent defeat of tlie Freuch that he could 
expect nothing from them in the way of assistance, he depended entirely 
upon the loyalty of his own race to carry out his plan. Encouraged by 
other chiefs, when infoi'med that the British were coming to take posses- 
sion of the po.sts sui-rendcred by the French, he sent back the detiant 
message : "I stand in the way. ' ' 

Pontiac's war ended as all contests end in which an inferior race 
attempts to impede the onward march of a superior one,-and the subjec- 
tion i]f the Indians was made more complete by Colonel Bouquet's march 
into the interior of the Indian country, forcing the natives to enter into 
treaties to keep the peace. Pontiac's warriors captured the posts at Fort 
Wayne and Ouiatenon, but the post at Vincennes was not molested, as it 
had not yet been turned over to the British, but was still occupied by a 
French garrison under command of St. Ange. On October 10, 1765, St. 
Ange and his garrison was succeeded by a British detachment under 
Captain Sterling, who immediately issued a proclamation prepai-ed by 
General (i;ige. formally taking possession of the territory ceded to Great 
Britain by the Paris treaty. 

From that time until the beginning of the Revolution, the English 
established but few posts in their new possessions, Init those at Fort ]\Iiami 
(Wayne), Ouiatenon and Vincennes were strengthened, and at the com- 
mencement of the Revolutionary war they were occupied by small garri- 
sons, the British depending largely upon the strength and loyalty of their 
Indian allies to prevent the colonists from encroaching upon their lands 
in the Ohio valley. 

In Decendjcr, 1777, General George Rogers Clark appeared before the 
legislature of Virginia with a plan to capture the English posts in the 
Northwest — especially those at Detroit, Vincennes and Kaskaskia. Gov- 
ernor Patrick Ilenrj- approved Clark's plan and the legislature appropri- 
ated £1,200 to defray the expenses of the campaign. Early in the spring 
of 1778. four companies of infantry, commanded by Captains Joseph 
Bowman, John Montgomery, Leonard Hehn and William Harrod, 
rendezvoused at Corn island, in the Ohio river opposite the present city 
of Louisville, Kentucky. On June 24, 1778, the forward movement was 
begun, the little army drifting down the river to Fort Jlassac, where the 
boats were concealed and the march overland toward Kaskaskia was 
eonuneuced. Kaskaskia was captured without a struggle on the 4th 
of July ;ind Clark sent Captain Bowman to reduce the post at Cahokia, 
near the present city of East St. Louis. This post was also surrendered 
without resistance. 

While at Kaskaskia, Clark learned that Father Gibault, a French 
priest, was favorable to the American cause and determined to enlist his 


assistance iu the capture of the post at Vinceiines. A conference was 
arranged with the priest, who admitted his loyalty to the American side, 
but on account of his calling declined to become an active participant in 
a movement that might subject him to criticism and destroy his usefulness 
in the church. However, he recommended a Doctor Lafonte, whom he 
knew to be both capable and reliable, to conduct the negotiations for the 
surrender of the post, and even promised to direct the affair, provided it 
could be done ^ythout exposure. Accordingly, Doctor Lafonte explained 
to the inhabitants of Viucennes that they could break the yoke of British 
domination by taking the oath of allegiance to the American colonies, 
which they cheerfully did. and Captain Helm was sent to take command 
of the post. This proved to be a barren victory, as subsequent events will 

In October, 1778, the Virginia assembly passed an act providing that 
all citizens of the Commonwealth of Virginia "who are ali-eady settled, 
or shall hereafter settle, on the northwestern side of the River Ohio, shall 
be included iu a distinct county, which shall be called Illinois county," 
etc. Before the provisions of this act could be applied to the newly con- 
quered territory. Henrv Hamilton, the British lieutenant-governor of 
Detroit, with thirty regulars, fifty volunteers and four hundred Indians, 
started down the Wabash to reinforce the posts. On December 15, 1778, 
he took poissession of the fort at Vincennes, the American garrison at 
that time consisting of Captain Helm and one man. This little garrison 
of two refused to surrender until promised the honors of war. Imme- 
diatel,v after the capture of the fort the French citizens were disarmed 
and before man.v days had passed a large force of hostile Indians began 
to gather near the post. 

Clark was now in a perilous position. His force was weaker tlian when 
he set out on his expedition and it was absolutel.v necessary that part of 
his men should be detailed to guard the posts alread.v captured. It was in 
the dead of winter, he was far removed from his base of supplies, pro- 
visions were scarce, and there were no roads open through the country 
over which his army must march on foot against Vincennes. Notwith- 
standing all these difficulties, Clark was not disma,ved. "When he learned, 
late in January, 1779, that Hamilton had weakened his garrison by send- 
ing his Indian allies against the frontier settlements, he resolved to attack 
the post. Hamilton 's purpose was to collect a large body of Indians and 
as soon as spring opened drive out the Americans, hence prompt action on 
Clark's part was imperative. He therefore built a large galley, or bateau, 
called the "Willing." which left Kaskaskia on February 1, 1779, with a 
supply of amnniuition and provisions, two four-pounder cannon, four 
swivel guns and forty-six men, with instructions to drop down the i\Iis- 


sissippi, ascend the Ohio and Walia.sli to Viiicciuies as (|uickly as i)ossihle. 
Clark, with the remaining 17Q men, then began the march of 160 miles 
across the country, overcame all obstacles, his men frequently wading 
through creeks and marshes whei'e the water came up to their waists, and 
on the morning of Kehruary 18, 1770, was near enough to Vincennes to 
hear the i-eport of tlu' sunrise gun at the fort. Three days more were 
passed in tiu' swami)s iieai- the point where it was expected to meet the 
Willing, but at daybreak on the morning of the 21st the little arm}'- was 
ferried across the Wabash in two canoes, with the intention of attacking 
the fort before reinforcements could arrive. A hunter from the fort was 
captured and from him Clark learned that Hamilton had but about eighty 
men in the fort. He then prepared the following proclamation, which he 
sent by the hunter to the people of the village: 
"To the inhabitants of Post Vincennes: — 

"Gentlemen: Being now within two miles of your village with my 
army, determined to take your fort this night, and not being ^villing to 
surprise you, I take tliis method to re(|uest such of .you as are true citi- 
zens, and willing to enjoy the liberty I bring you, to remain still in your 
houses: — and those, if any there be, that are friends to the king, will 
instantly repair to the fort and join the hair-buyer general and fight like 
men. And if any such as do not go to the fort shall be discovered after- 
ward, they nuiy depend on severe punishment. On the contrary, those 
who ai-e true friends to liberty may depend on being well treated ; and I 
once more request them to keep out of the streets. For every one I find 
in arms on my arrival, I shall treat him as an enemy." 

The allusion to Hamilton as the "hair-buyer general" has reference 
to that officer's attempt to incite the Indians to greater cruelty by 
placing a price upon the scalps of the settlers and colonial troops. 

Clark says in his rei)ort of the expedition that he had various ideas ou 
the suppo.sed results of his proclamation. He watched the messenger 
enter the village ami saw that his arrival there created some stir, but was 
unable to learn the effects of his communication. A short time before 
sunset he marched his men out into view. In his report of his movements 
on this occasion, he says: "In leaving the covert that we were in, we 
marched and countermarched in such a manner that we appeared numer- 
ous." The ruse was further strengthened by the fact that Clark had 
about a dozen stands of colors, which were now fastened to long poles 
and carried in such a way that they could be seen above the ridge, behind 
which his "handful of men" were performing their maneuvers, thus cre- 
ating the impre.s.sion that he had several regiments of troops. To add to 
this impression, several horses that had been captured from duck-hunters 


near the village, were ridden by the officers in all direetions, apparently 
carrying orders from the commanding general to his subordinates. 

These evolutions were kept up until dark, when Clark moved out and 
took a position in the rear of the village. Lieutenant Bayley, with four- 
teen men, was ordered to open the attack on the fort. One man in the 
garrison was killed in the first volley. Some of the citizens came out and 
joined the besiegers and the fort was surrounded. About nine o'clock on 
the morning of the 24:th, after a siege of two days and three nights, 
Clark demanded a surrender, with all the stores and munitions of war, 
and sent the following message to Hamilton: "If I am obliged to storm, 
you may depend on such treatment as is .iustly due a murderer. Beware 
of destroying stores of any kind, or any papers or letters that are in 
your possession — for, by heavens! if you do, there shall lie no mercy 

shown you." 

To this message Hamilton replied that he was "not to be awed into 
doing anything unworthy of a British soldier," and the firing upon the 
fort was renewed. Most of Clark's men were skilled in the use of the 
rifle and their bullets found their way through the smallest cracks in the 
fort with deadly effect. Some of the soldiers begged for permission to 
storm the fort, but Clark felt that it was .much safer to continue his 
present tactics of harassing the enemy until he was ready to surrender. 
He had not long to wait, for in a little while a flag of truce was dis- 
played and Hamilton asked for an armistice of three days. The request 
was promptly denied and the British commander then asked Clark to 
come into the fort for a parley. But the American general was "too old 
a bird to be caught witli chaff" and refused to place himself thus within 
his enemy's power. He sent back word that he would meet Hamilton at 
the church, which was some eighty yards from the fort. As there was 
nothing else to do, the British oiticer, accompanied by Captain Helm, 
who was a prisoner, came out to the church and again asked for a truce 
of three days. Fearing the return of some of Hamilton's Indians, Clark 
again denied the request and informed Hamilton that the only terms 
he could offer was "Surrender at discretion." This was a bitter pill 
for the haughty Briton, but it had to be swallowed. The fort, with all 
its stores, arms and numitions of war, was then turned over to the 
Americans, and on the morning of the 25th the inhabitants saw the 
Stars and Stripes floating from the flagstaff of the post. 

On the 27th the Willing arrived and two days later a detachment sent 
out by Clark captured about $50,000 worth of goods coming down the 
Wabash to the fort. There was great rejoicing in Virginia and the 
eastern colonies when it was learned that the western outposts were in the 
hands of the Americans. Says Levering : "The results of this campaign 


were far-reaeliiiig in the settlement with Great Britain four years later, 
when the final treaty of peace was ratified. As a consequence, all the 
territory between the Ohio river and the Great Lakes became a United 
States possession." 

Through the conquest of the Northwest by General Clark, what is 
now the state of Indiana became subject to the colony of Virginia and a 
tide, of emigration followed. On January 2, 1781, the legislature of Vir- 
ginia passed a resolution to the effect that, on certain conditions, the 
colony would cede to congress its claim to the territory northwest of the 
Ohio river. But the Revolutionary war was then in progress and congress 
took no action on the matter. On January 20, 1783, an armistice was 
agreed upon, which was proclaimed by congress on the 11th of April 
following. The treaty of Paris was concluded on September 3, 1783, and 
ten days later congress figreed to accept the cession tendered by Virginia 
more than two years before. On December 20, 1783, the Virginia assem- 
bly passed a resolution authorizing their delegates in congress to convey 
to the United States "the title and claims of Virginia to the lands 
northwest of the river Ohio." The cession was formally made on ilareh 
1, 1784. and the present state of Indiana thereby became territory of the 
United States. 

On .May 20, 1785, congress passed "An ordinance for ascertaining 
the mode of disposing of lands in western territory," and on June loth of 
the same year a proclamation was issued forbidding settlements northwest 
of the Ohio until the lands were surveyed. This ordinance and proclama- 
tion led the Indians to believe that their lands were about to be taken 
from them for white settlers and they grew restless. By treaties in 17(38, 
between the British colonial officials on the one side and the chiefs of the 
Five Nations and Cherokee on the other, it was agreed that the Ohio and 
Kanawha rivers should form the boundary between the Indians and the 
whites, the former relinquishing all claims to their lands along the Atlan- 
tic coast and in the Delaware and Sus([U('liaiina valleys, in return for 
which they were confirmed in their possession of the country lying west 
of the .Mlegheny mountains. The Indians claimed that the acts of con- 
gress relating to the territorj' northwest of the Ohio rivc^r were in viola- 
tion of the treaties of 1768 — which was true — but during the Revolution 
most of the tribes in that region had acted in accord with the British, and 
the new government of the Ignited States repudiated the treaties made 
by the British provincial authorities. Late in the summer of 178C, some 
of the tribes grew so threatening in their demonstrations that General 
Clark inarched against the Indians on the Wabash and General Logan 
against the Siuiwnees on the Big ^liami river. In October of that year 
a garrison was established at Vinceunes. 


On July 13, 1787, congress passed an act or ordinance "for the gov- 
erunient of the territory of the United States northwest of tlie river 
Ohio," and on the 5th of the following October General Arthiir St. Clair 
was elected by congress to the position of governor of the Xorthwest Ter- 
ritory. Again the Indians showed signs of becoming hostile and on 
January 9, 1789, General St. ( "lair concluded a treaty of peace with some 
of the leading trilies at Fort Ilarmar. on the .Muskingum river. This 
treaty was not kept by the Indians, and in September, 1790, General 
Harmar led an expedition into the Indian country. His force of some 
fifteen hundred men arrived at the :Maumee river on the 17th of October 
and the work of punishing the Indians was commenced. The bad behavior 
of the militia prevented the expedition from being an entire success and 
the army returned to Port "Washington early in November, having lost 183 
killed and 31 wounded. About the time Harmar reached the iMaumee, 
Major Hamtramck marched up the Wabash river from Vincennes, de- 
stroying several deserted villages but finding no hostile Indians to 
oppose him. 

The punishment meted out to the Indians by General Harmar kept 
them comparatively (|uiet for about a year, but in the fall of 1791 General 
St. Clair found it necessary to organize an expedition against the tribes 
in northwestern Ohio and about the headwaters of the Waliash. On 
November 4, 1791. St. Clair's army was signally defeated and almost 
annihilated by the Indians under command of Me-she-ke-no-quah. or Lit- 
tle Turtle. Soon after his defeat St. Clair resigned his commission as 
major-general aiid Anthony Wayne was appointed to succeed him. From 
the spring of 1702 to August, 1793, Wayne was busy in recruiting, organ- 
izing and equipping his army. While tliis was going on the government 
appointed Benjamin Lincoln, Beverly Randolph and Timothy Pickering 
as commissioners to negotiate treaties with the Indans. Councils were 
held at various places with the chiefs of the dissatisfied tribes, but 
nothing was accomplished. 

In the spring of 1794 Wayne took the field against the hostile natives 
and on the 20th of August won a decisive victory at the battle of Fallen 
Timbers, near Toledo, Ohio. He then returned to the deserted Miami 
village, at the confluence of the St. Joseph and St. .Mary's rivers, where 
he arrived on September 17, 1794, and the next day selected a site for 
"Fort Wayne," which was completed on the 22nd of October. From 
this fort he sent messengers to the Indian chiefs, inviting them to come to 
Fort Greenville for the purpose of making a new treaty, but the season 
was so far advanced that nothing was done until the following summer. 
During the months of June and July, 1795, councils were held with several 
of the tribes, and on August 3, 1795, the treaty of Greenville, one of the 


most important Indian treaties in the history of Ohio and Indiana, was 
coiu-ludecl. That treaty was signed by eighty-nine chiefs, distrilmted 
among the several tribes as follows: 24 Pottawatonii, IG Delaware, 11) 
\Vyandot. 9 Shawnee. 11 Chippewa, -i Jliami, 7 Ottawa, 3 Eel River, S 
Wea and 3 Kaskaskia. One of the -Miami chiefs was Little Turtle who 
liad administered such disastrous defeat to General St. Clair nearly four 
years before. Some of the chiefs represented also the Kickapoo and 
I'iankesliaw tribes, so that the treaty bound practically all the Indians in 
Ohio and Indiana to terms of peace. 

By the treaty of Greenville the United States were granted several 
small tracts of land for military stations, two of which — Fort Wayne 
and Vineennes — were in Indiana. The United States government was 
also given the right to build or open roads through the Indian country, 
one of which ran from Fort Wayne to the Wabash river and down that 
stream to the Ohio. This road passed through what is now JMiami county. 
For these concessions the United States agreed to give the Indians goods 
valued at $20,000 and annuity of $9,500, in goods forever. This annuity 
was to be distributed among the tribes as follows : To the Delawai-e, Pot- 
tawatonii, Shawnee. Wyandot, iliami, Ottawa and Chippewa, $1,000 
each ; to the Kickapoo, Wea, Piiuikeshaw, Eel River and Kaskaskia, $500 
each. The United States further agreed to relinquish claim to all other 
Indian lands north of the Ohio, east of the ^lississippi and south of the 
Great Lakes, ceded by Great Britain in the treaty of 1783. 

By an act of congress, approved May 7, 1800, the Northwest Territory 
was divided into three teri'itories — Ohio. Indiana and Illinois — and on 
tile 13th of the same month Genei-al William IIenr\- Harrison was 
appointed governor of the Territory of Indiana. At the same time 
•lohn (iibson. of Pennsylvania, was ajipointed tei'ritorial secretary. 

Although, by the treaty of Greenville, the United States had agreed to 
ixiiiiit the Indians to remain in peaceable possession of their lands north 
of the Ohio, it was not long until the white man began to look with longing 
eyes at the fertile valleys and prairies of Indiana, and before a decade had 
|)assiil |)ressure was brought to bear upon the government to negotiate a 
treaty with the Indians whereby these lands could b(! acf[uired and opened 
to settlement. Accordingly, a general council of Indians was called to 
meet at Fort Wayne on June 7, 1803. The most important acts of that 
council were the recognition of the rights of the Delaware Indians to 
certain lands lying between the Ohio and Wabash rivei's, lixing definitely 
the post boundaries at Vineennes, and the cession of the post tract to the 
United States by the Delawares. Governor Ilarrisnn was j)resent at the 
council and made the necessary preliminary arrangements for a treaty 
afterward concluded at Vineennes on August 18, 1804, by which the Dela- 


wares, "for the cousiderations hereinafter mentioned, relinquish to the 
United States forever, all their right and title to the tract of country which 
lies hetween the Ohio and Wabash rivers and below the tract ceded by 
the treaty of Fort Wayne, and the road leading from Vincennes to the 
Falls of the Ohio. ' ' 

The most northern point of the tract thus ceded is not far from French 
Lick. For the cession the trilie was to receive an annuity of $800 for ten 
years, which annuity was "to be appropriated exclusively to the purpose 
of ameliorating their condition and promoting their civilization."' To ac- 
complish these ends it was further stipulated that "suitable persons shall 
be employed at the expense of the United States to teach them to make 
fences, cultivate the earth, and such of the domestic arts as are adapted 
to their situation; and a further sum of $300 shall l)e appropriated an- 
nually for five years to this object. ' ' 

The Piankeshaws soon showed their dissatisfaction over this cession, 
claiming the land and refusing to recognize the right of the Delawares to 
transfer the title to the government. General Harrison met the Pianke- 
shaw chiefs at Vincennes on August 27, 1804, and concluded a treaty by 
which the tribe relinquished title to the tract for an annuity of $200 for 
iive years. 

Another treaty was concluded at Grouseland, near Viucennes, on 
August 21, 1805, between General Harrison and the chiefs of several 
tribes. In this treaty "The Pottawatomies, Miamis, Eel Rivers and Weas 
explicitly acknowledge the right of the Delawares to sell the tract of land 
conveyed to the United States by the treaty of the 18th of August, 1804, 
which tract was given by the Piankeshaws to the Delawares, about thirty- 
seven years ago. ' ' 

At the same time the Wea and Eel river tribes agreed to "cede and 
relinquish to the United States forever, all that tract of country which 
lies south of a line to be drawn from the northeast corner of the tract 
ceded by the treaty of Fort Wayne, so as to strike the general boundary 
line, running from a point opposite to the mouth of the Kentucky river 
to Fort Recovery, at a distance of fifty miles from its commencement on 
the Ohio river." The lands thus ceded include all the present counties 
of Washington, Orange, Jackson, Jennings, Ripley and Jefferson, and 
small portions of some of the adjoining counties. 

About this time some of the Indian chiefs began to see, in the policy 
of making treaties of cession, the loss of the lands guaranteed to the 
Indians by the treaty of Greenville. Most of these chiefs had been accus- 
tomed to look upon Little Turtle, the great chief of the ^Miami, as one of 
their wisest men, a leader whose opinions were always entitled to respect. 
But when he bowed to the inevitable and joined with other chiefs in 


disposiiitj of tlic lands of his pfoijlc, lie was branded as "an Indian with 
a white mans heart and a traitor to his race." Consequently many of 
the chiefs were ready to follow a new leader, when, in November, 1805, 
a propliet arose among the Sliawnees in the person of La-la-weth-ika, then 
about thirty years of age. lie went into a trance, saw the spirit world, 
and came back with a message from the Great Manitou to "let firewater 
alone, abandon the white man's custom and follow tlir waj-s of our 
ancestoi's. ' ' 

After his vision he changed his naiiic to Tensk-wa-ta-wa (sometimes 
written wliieh in the .Shawnee tongue means "The Open 
Door." This name was selected because he claimed to be the means of 
opening the way by which the Indians were to regain their lost power and 
the lands of which they had been dispossessed. He took up his head- 
quarters at Greenville, Ohio, but the Miamis, who still believed in their 
own leader. Little Turtle, were jealous of his influence. In order to 
weaken his power among the young braves of that ti-ibe, some of the 
Jlianii chiefs declared him to be an impostor. Says Jloouey: 

"By some means he had learned that an eclipse of the sun was to take 
place in the summer of 1806. As the time drew near, he called about 
him the scoffers and boldly announced that on a certain day he would 
prove to them his supernatural authority by causing the sun to become 
dark. When the day and hour arrived and the eartlT at midday was 
enveloped in the gloom of twilight, Tenskawtawa, standing in the midst 
of the terrified Indians, pointed to the sky and cried : ' Did I not speak 
the truth ? See, the sun is dark ! ' " 

Tenskawatawa then went a step farther in his claim to supernatural 
power and boldly asserted that he was a reincarnation of Manabozho, the 
gi-eat "first doer" of the Algonquians. He opposed the intermarriage of 
Indian squaws with white men and accused the Christian Indians of 
witchcraft. Upon his accusation the Delaware chief, Tat-e-boek-o-she, 
thi-ough whose influence the treaty of 1804 had been brought about, was 
tomahawked as a wizard, and the Indian missionai'v called "Joshua" 
was Ininied at the stake. His followers increas<:'d in nuiiibci's, but it soon 
bfcanir ai)parcnt that something more than prophecy and a display of 
suiicrnatural ability would be necessary to restore to the Indians their 

As Pontiae had taken advantage of the preaching of the Delaware 
prophet, more than forty ycai's before, to organize a conspiracy, Tecum- 
seli (The Shooting Star), a bi-other of tlic prophet, now came forward as 
a temporal leader and began the work of cementing the tribes into a con- 
federacy to resist the further encroachments of the i)ale-face race. Te- 
cumseh and Tenskwatawa were sons of the great Shawnee warrior Pukee- 


sheno, who was killed at the battle of Kanawha, in 1774, when the 
prophet was an infant. In the spring of 1808 a great many Indians came 
from the country about the Great Lakes to visit the prophet and his 
brother at Greenville. The peaceable Miamis and Delawares protested 
against this incui-sion of their domain and to avoid an open rupture with 
these tribes, the two brothers removed their headquarters to the Potta- 
watomi village on the Wabash river, a short distance below the mouth of 
the Tippecanoe river, which village then became known as "Prophet's 
Town. ' ' 

Tecumseh's nest act was to notify General Harrison that he and his 
followers would never consent to the occupation of the Indian lands by 
white men until all the tribes should agree, instead of the few who claimed 
to own the lauds. Having served this notice upon the governor of the 
Indiana territory, the wily chief began his active propaganda, visiting the 
chiefs and head men of the different tribes to arouse them to action, or 
at least secure their cooperation. While he was thus engaged another 
treaty was concluded at Fort Wayne on September 30, 1809, whereby two 
large tracts of land in Indiana were ceded to the United States. The 
first embraced practically all of the present counties of Fayette, WajTie 
and Randolph, and the second included approximately the counties of 
Monroe, Lawrence, Greene, Sullivan, Owen, Clay and Vigo. This treaty so 
incensed the Shawnees and their allies that they commenced a series of 
raids upon the frontier settlements. To protect the settlers. General 
Harrison, in the fall of 1811, went up the Wabash and near the site 
of the present city of Terre Haute built Fort Harrison, which was com- 
pleted late in October. 

Harrison then started for Prophet's Town, but before reaching the 
village he was met by a delegation on November 6, 1811, and arrange- 
ments were made for a "talk" the next day. Harrison distrusted the 
members of the delegation, and when his army encamped on a piece of 
high ground near the village he placed a strong guard about the camp 
and gave orders for the men to "sleep on their arms. ' ' Events proved that 
his suspicions were well founded. A short time before daylight on the 
morning of the 7th, the Indians, led by the prophet in person, made 
their attack, intending to surprise the camp. The precautions taken by 
Harrison now demonstrated his wisdom as a military commander. His 
camp fires were suddenly extinguished and his men fought on the defen- 
sive until it was Light enough to see clearly, when they charged with 
such bravery and enthusiasm that the Indians were completely routed. 
Above the din of battle the voice of the prophet could be heard har- 
anguing his warriors, telling them that through his supernatural power 
the bullets of the white men would be rendered harmless and that the 


pale-face cowards would be driven from the Indian Inmting grounds. In 
this action, known in history as tlie hatth- of Tippecanoe, the wliites lost 
sixty killed and one hundred wounded. The Indian loss was nuich 
heavier. It is said that Louis Godt'roy. a war chief of the iliamis. 
afterward a i)roMnnent figure in Miami county history, gave the signal 
for the Indians to attack. After the battle, Harrison burned Prophet's 
Town and returned to Vincennes. 

At the time of the battle Tecumseh was in Tennessee. Upon his 
return it is said that he called the prophet a fool foi- bringing on an 
engagement prenuiturely. took him by the long hair and .shook him until 
his teeth rattled, and declared that he ought to be put to deatii for 
thwarting their plans. \ot long after this Tecumseh went to ("anada. 
.loined the British army, in which he was made a brigadier-general, and 
fell at the battle of Thames, October .5. 1813. 

In December, 1811. a memorial was sent to congress by the people of 
Indiana, asking foi- admission into the Union as a state, but, before any 
action was taken on the memorial, war was declared against Great 
Britain and for the next three j'ears the attention of the national adminis- 
tration was fully occupied in the conduct of the war. In this conHict 
some of the tribes in the interior acted in accord with the British and 
cai'ried the war into Indiana. Under date of October 13, 1812, General 
Harrison wrote to the war department that the lliamis had "dug up the 
hatchet" and were engaged in committing depredations upon the fron- 
tier settlements; that they had attacked Fort Harrison, besieged Fort 
Wayne, and that on several occasions his messengers or supply trains 
had been attacked and captured, although the tribe still claimed to be 

Tile American post at Detroit had already fallen into the hands of 
the British, and its commanding position, with the cooperation of the 
Indian trilies in the interior practically placed the entire Wabash valley 
undei' the control of the enemy. It was deemed the part of wisdom to 
overcome the Indians before attempting to recapture Detroit and to this 
end the government sent Lieut. -Col. John B. Campl>ell, of the Nineteenth 
United States Infantry, with Captain Elliott's company of that regiment, 
part of a regiment of Kentucky dragoons, commanded by Colonel Sim- 
rail, :\Ia.jor Balls squadron of United States di-agoons. Captain But- 
ler's Pittsburgh Blues. Alexander's Pennsylvania Riflemen and some 
other troops — six hundred men in all — against the Indian villages on the 
Mississinewa river. This command, well mounted, was ordered to march 
from P^'ranklinton, Ohio, on November 25. 1812, and General Harrison, 
in his instiuctions to Colonel Campbell, advised him to march by the 
Greenville route, in order to avoid the Delaware villages, as the gov- 

Vol. I- 6 


ernment was pledged for the safey of those peaceable Indians. He also 
recommended that certain Miami chiefs, among whom were Richard- 
ville, Wliite Loon, Silver Heels, and the son and brother of Little Turtle, 
be left unmolested, as they had endeavored to keep their warriors from 
joining the hostiles. 

Campbell's little army reached the Mississinewa on the morning of 
Thursday, December 17, when he approached unobserved an Indian vil- 
lage inhabited by Miamis and a few Delawares. His troops rushed into 
the town, killed eight warriors and took forty-two prisoners, thirty-four 
of whom were women and children. With the exception of a few cabins, 
the town was then burned by Campbell "s orders, the prisoners being 
confined in the houses that were left standing. Campbell then took 
Ball's and Simrall's dragoons and proceeded down the Mississinewa 
river practically to its mouth, passing through a part of what is now 
Butler township, Miami county. On his march he found three deserted 
villages, which were burned. He then captured several horses, killed a 
large number of cattle and returned to the town which he had first 
attacked and destroyed in the morning. 

That night he formed his camp iu a square, 500 feet on each side, in 
order to be ready to resist an attack from any ([uarter, should one be 
made. At the northwest corner of the S(|uare, across the old trail leading 
to Meshingomesia's village, was a redoubt commanded by Captain Pierce. 
Captain Smith, of the Kentucky dragoons, was also stationed in a re- 
doubt, the location of which cannot be ascertained. During the night the 
Indians, enraged by the destruction of their villages and the killing of 
their cattle, gathered together a force of some 300 warriors and marched 
toward Campbell's camp, which was attacked with all the fury of the 
savage a little while before daybreak on Friday morning, the ISth. For- 
tunately, Colonel Campbell had caused the reveille to be sounded at four 
o'clock, and he and his officers were in council when the Indian war-whoop 
was heard. Although it was bitterly cold and the ground was covered 
with snow, every man ran immediately to his post and the surprise in- 
tended by the Indians did not materialize. Captain Pierce's redoubt 
was the first point of attack. That officer bravely held his position until 
it was too late to get within the S(iuare. He fell with two bullets through 
his body and was also tomahawked. The Indians then took possession of 
the redoubt, from which a murderous fire was poured into the northwest 
corner of the square, and a little later the entire west line, consisting of 
Major Ball's dragoons, was engaged. Captain Smith's redoubt was also 
attacked, but he maintained his position until ordered to fall back to the 
scjuare and fill up a gap iu the north line, between Captain Hopkins and 
Captain Young. 


As soou as it was light enough to see clearly, Captain Trotter's com- 
pany of Sinirall's dragoons was ordered to charge. The movement was 
brilliantly executed and at the same time Captain Markle's company of 
Ball's dragoons also charged and the Indians were thrown into confusion. 
Campbell then followed up the advantage by ordering Captain Jolinson 
to support the charging troops, but the enemy was completely routed 
before he could bring his men into actibn. 

The battle lasted about an hour and resulted in a loss to Campbell's 
force of eight killed and forty-eight wounded. Of the wounded, two died 
within a few days artd seventeen were carried in litters to Fort Green- 
ville. Fifteen Indians were found dead on the field and it was believed 
by Campbell that a luimber of dead and wounded had been carried away. 
One of Campbell's officers afterward reported 107 horses killed in the en- 
gagement. In his report, Campbell commended his men for their bravery 
during the battle and for their fortitude during the arduous march back 
to Fort Greenville. So many horses had been killed that many of the 
men had to make that march on foot and of those who reached Fort Green- 
ville over 300 were so badly frost-bitten that they were totally unfit for 
military duty. 

Although this battle was fought in what is now Grant county, it is a 
part of Miami county history, because many of the Indians who partici- 
pated in the action resided in tiie latter county. Graham says that Francis 
and Louis Godfroy and Shepoconah were the leaders of the Indians in the 
battle, but an Indian tradition credits Little Thunder with being the 
commander. Meshingomesia, then about thirty years of age, so distin- 
guished himself in the fight that he was ever afterward honored by his 
tribe and on the death of his father was made chief. 

Early in the summer of 1909 a movement was started in (irant county 
to set apart the Mississinewa battle ground as a national park. Some of 
the citizens of that county, headed by Major George W. Steele, Colonel 
George Lockwood and State Senator John T. Strange, called into con- 
ference a gentleman from Wabash county and Arthur L. Bodurtha, of 
Peru. Subseciuently, through these representatives, a battle ground com- 
mittee, consisting of members from the three counties, was appointed. 
Mr. Bodurtha appointed as the Miami county members of this connnittee 
Charles A. Cole, Albert C. Bearss, Rawley H. Bouslog, Henry Meinhardt 
and Walter C. Bailey. The committee made arraugeuients for a meeting to 
be held on the battle ground on Sunday, August 29, 1909. In the prepa- 
rations for the picnic Omer Holman, of the Peru Republican, took an 
active part and was secretary of the Jliami county delegation. It was es- 
timated that from ten thousand to twenty thousand people were at the 
meeting, which was presided over by Major George W. Steele, governor 

84 HISTORY OF :miami county 

of the Marion branch of the National Soldiers' Home, and Arthur L. 
Bodurtha was the principal speaker of the day. Short addresses were also 
made by Congressman (Jeorge W. Ranch; Xelson G. Hunter, of Wabash; 
Judge R. T. St. John, of JIarion ; Mayor Joseph Murphy, of \Vabash ; 
Henry S. Bailey and Albert H. Cole, of Peru, and one or two others, and 
Gabriel Godfroy spoke in the Miami language. 

At the close of the exercises on motion of Walter C. Bailey, of Peru, 
a permanent Battleground Memorial Association was organized with 
Major George W. Steele as president ; John T. Strange, of Grant county. 
Dr. P. G. Moore, of Wabash, and A. N. Dukes, of Miami, vice-presidents ; 
Arthur L. Bodurtha, secretary; Thomas R. Brady, of Wabash, treasurer. 

Senator Strange afterward succeeded in securing the passage of an 
act by the Indiana legislature, entitled '"An act to perpetuate battle- 
grounds and other historic sites." This act, which was approved by the 
governor on March 6. 1911, provides, "That the common council of any 
city, the board of trustees of any incorporated town, or any incorpora- 
tion, organized as a voluntary association of this state and not for protit, 
shall have the power and are hereby authorized to acquire, and to have 
and hold, battle grounds or other historic sites for the purpose of main- 
taining and preseiwing or improving the same for historical purposes. 
That the acquisition of any such property is hereby declared to be for the 
public use, and title to the same may be taken under the power of eminent 
domain. That all such property so acquired and preserved shall not be 
liable to taxation, but the same shall be entirely exempt therefrom." 

The association was incorporated on March 1, 1912, and was en- 
larged to include the counties of Grant, Howard. Miami. Wabash, Hunt- 
ington, Cass and Blackford. In 1913 the officers of the association were as 
follows: J. Wood Wilson, president. Major Steele having declined to serve 
longer on account of his official duties as governor of the Soldiers' Home ; 

Walter C. Bailey, vice-president; Beshore, secretary; and 

a board of directors consisting of one from each county, to wit : Charles 
A. Cole, Miami; Conrad Wolf, Howard; John T. Strange, Grant; Israel 
Heaston, Huntington, who is also the treasurer; E. E. Cox, Blackford; 
Frederick King, Wabash; Dr. J. Z. Powell, Cass. So far nothing has 
been done in the way of establishing a park, but the aim of the associa- 
tion is to acquire, by purchase or the exercise of the power of eminent 
domain, a tract of fifty acres, including the place where the battle was 
fought and the grove lying between it and the Mississinewa, and set it 
apart as a reservation, that the valor of Colonel Campbell and his men 
may not be forgotten, and the historic importance of the battle they 
fought there in the \rinter of 1812 may be preserved to future generations. 
The eight men killed in the battle were buried on the field and the asso- 


ciation mado an effort to find out the exact location of their graves, that 
a monument might be erected upon the spot. .Many of the Indians knew 
the location of the graves, but they have steadfastly refused to give the 
information to the white people. At the picnic was a Mrs. Winter, an 
old half-breed woman, who admitted that she knew where the men are 
buried, but as she had been pledged to secrecy by Meshingomesia, no 
persuasion would induce her to break that pledge. 

The memorial of December, 1811, praying for admission into the 
union as a state, having failed to accomplish its purpose, a second one 
was addressed to congress by tlie people of Indiana Territory on Decem- 
ber 14, 1815. This time their efforts were crowned with success. A bill 
providing for the admission of Indiana to statehood was signed by Presi- 
dent Jladison on April 19, 1816. At that time there were but thirteen 
organized counties in Indiana and the greater part of the land, including 
Miami county, was still in the hands of the Indians. On May 13, 1816, 
delegates to a constitutional convention were elected from the thirteen 
counties; the convention assembled at Cordydon, the territorial capital, 
on June 10, 1816, and completed its work on the 29th of the same month. 
The first election of state officers was on August 1, 1816; the legislature 
then chosen met on November 4th ; Governor Jonathan Jennings was 
inaugurated three days later, and on December 11, 1816, congress, by 
joint resolution, approved the admission of the new state. 

When the Territory of Indiana was established in 1800 the seat of 
government was located at Vincennes and remained there until on 
^larch 11, 1813, the legislature passed an act providing that "from and 
after the first day of May next, the seat of government of this territory 
shall be located at Corydon, Harrison county." By the act of January 
11. 1820, ten commissioners were appointed by the legislature to "select 
and locate a tract of land, not exceeding four sections, for a permanent 
capital." The commissioners, after visiting several proposed localities, 
se]e<'tcd the site on the west fork of the White river, M'here the city of 
Indiana]K)lis now stands. The selection of this site was confirmed by 
the legislature on January 6, 1821, but the seat of government was not 
removed from Corydon until Jamuu-y, 1825. The establishment of the 
seat of goverinnent so near the geographical center of the state wielded 
an influence upon the settlement of central and northern Indiana and 
hastened the negotiation of flic Indi;in ti-eaties descrilied in Chapter III 
of this work. 



Early Explorers and Missionaries — Indian Traders — John ^IcGre- 
GOR — First Actual Settlers — The Ewings — Pioneer Life and 
Customs — Ami^sements of the Early Settlers — A Bear Story — 
Legislation Concerning Miami County — Organized in 1834 — First 
County Officers — Location op the County Seat — First Jurors — 
First County Election — Courthouses and Jail Buildings. 

Long before any permanent settlements were made in what is now 
Miami county, the Wabash valley was visited by white men. French 
explorers and missionaries, in the closing years of the seventeenth cen- 
tury, when France held dominion over all the ]\Iississippi valley, told 
in their letters and journals of the Mauraee and Wabash rivers, along 
which they predicted would be found the principal route of communi- 
cation between the French settlements about the Great Lakes and the 
Father of Waters. Among those who referred to the Maumee and 
Wabash rivers in their communications to the French authorities at 
Quebec were Father Hennepin, La Salle, and the missionaries Allouez 
and Dablon. Some of the first persons to visit the Wabash valley were 
Drouet de Riehardville, Jacques Godfroy, Hyacinth La Salle, who was 
the first white child bom at Fort Wayne, Captain Wells, who was 
killed in the massacre at Port Dearborn, and Joseph Barron. The last 
named acted as interpreter in the negotiations of several of the early 
treaties with the Indians and was General Harrison's messenger to the 
Shawnee prophet in 1810, before the battle of Tippecanoe, to warn 
him against making further efforts to incite the Indians to hostility. 

Following the first explorers came the Indian traders, who estab- 
lished posts at several places along the As a rule, the trader 
made no effort to establish a permanent settlement, or to attract a colony 
to his post. Their pirogues— large canoes dug out of logs— went up and 
down the river, carrying such goods as flour, bacon, whisky, trinkets 
and other goods to exchange with the Indians for their furs. 

On October 18, 1822, Lambert Cauchois, agent for "Francis God- 
froy, merchant of the Mississinewa, " entered into a contract with Jean 



Baptiste Chevalier to Imild "for the said Gudfroy a two-story house. 
20 hy 25 feet, with four twelve-light windows in eaeli story." For this 
house, which was to be of logs, the eoiitraetor was to receive $200 and 
the use of a yoke of oxen to haul the logs. It was stipiilated in tlic 
agreempnt that the huildiiig was to be completed by Juue 18, 1S2:^. in 
whieli year one-half of the contract price was to be paid at the time of 
Indian payment, and the remainder at the time of the pa.vment of the 
annuities in 1824. The house was located on the Mississinewa river, 
some distance from the "Wabash, and was used by Godfroj- as a trading 
post. He did not remove from his reservation on the Salaraouie river 
until after the treaty of 1826, when he took up his residence at his 
trading house, where a small settlement had grown uj) in the meantime. 
A few years later he formed a partnership with L. B. Bertheld, under 
the firm name of Godfroy & Bertheld, and this firm conducted a trading 
house on Canal street in Peru until after the treaty of 1838. The trad- 
ing house of Francis Godfroy and its successor — Godfroy & Bertheld— 
was one of the pioneer concerns of this character in Miami county. 

By the treaty of October 23, 1826, Chief Richardville was granted 
several sections of land, one of which was situated on the north side of 
the "Wabash river, where the original plat of the city of Peru was subse- 
quently laid nut. In February. 1827, John McGregor built a log cabin 
on the western part of Richardville 's section and is credited b.y some 
historians with having been the first actual white settler in Miami 
county. On August 18, 1827, Richardville sold the entire section to 
Joseph Holman for $500. 

A little later in the same year Samuel McClure established a trading 
post on the "Wabash river in what is now the southwestern part of 
Erie township, but he made no attempt to establish any permanent 
improvements of any kind, devoting his time and energies exclusively 
to carrying on a profitable and successful traffic with the natives. 

In the spring of 1828 James Oldham removed from the Salamonie 
river to the reservation of Louis Godfroy, five miles below Peru on the 
north side of the "Wabash, where he was joined later in the year by a 
Captain Drouillard and his son, Louis Drouillard. A few years later 
the last named removed to Peru, where he engaged in the grocery busi- 
ness and also operated a ferry across the "Wabash river. 

On January 7, 1829, Joseph Tlolman sold 210 acres of the section 
bought from Richardville to William N. Hood. (For a full account of 
this transaction and the founding of Peru see Chapter IX.) In this 
same year John W. Miller came from Preble enmity. Ohio, and settled 
on Louis Godfroy 's reser\'ation, near James Oldham, and his son, George 
Miller, who was born there in March, 1832, was one of the first white 


children born in the county. By the close of the year Benjamin H. 
Seott, Andrew Mar(iniss, Abuer Overman, Zephaniah Wade. Walter 
D. Nesbit, Isaac ilarcjniss and a few others settled near John JIcGre.sor"s 
cabin on the Holman tract. Benjamin H. Scott afterward became the 
first county clerk of ^liami county. 

In 1831 Solomon Wilkinson settleil in wliat is now JcftVi-son town- 
ship, where he was joined duriiip: tlie next twelve months l)y William 
Connor, John and William Smith, Alexander Jameson, and pirhajis 
one or two others. During the years 1832 and 1833 Eli Cook, William 
Bane, John Hoover and a few others settled in Jetit'erson township, 
James ^lalcolm in Perry, and there were a few additions to the settle- 
ment where Peru now stands. 

There were but few attempts to establish permanent settlements in 
the county until after the location of the Wabash & Erie canal. These 
few were mostly the little hamlets that grew up around the trading posts 
and the inhabitants were more interested in trading with the Indians 
than in developing the resources of the country. One of the most promi- 
nent trading firms was that of William G. & George W. Ewing, whose 
headi|uarters were at Fort Wayne. About 1829 they established a trad- 
ing post at Logansport, where George W. lived with his motlier for sev- 
eral years. He was living there in 1835. when he discovered the identity 
of Frances Slocum, as narrated in another chapter, but a few years later 
the establishment at Logansport was closed and he removed to Peru. 
Here the firm opened a trading house at the corner of Second and 
Broadway streets, where they fenced in a large lot, in which the Indians 
could keep their ponies when they came to do their "shopping." The 
Ewings were interested in trading posts all over the country. They 
were men of more than ordinary foresight and business sagacity and 
seemed to have a sort of intuition in selecting sites for their trading 
posts at places where large cities afterward grew up. Their post at 
Westport (now Kansas City). Missouri, was for several yeare a great 
outfitting point for emigrants bound to the far West. William G. Ewing 
married Esther Bearss, a sister of Daniel R. Bearss, one of the early 
business men of Peru. One of their trading houses was at St. Paul, 
IMinnesota, before there was any city there, but in a letter to Mr. Bearss, 
William G. Ewing expressed the opinion that some day there would be a 
great commercial center at that point, giving his reasons for such belief. 
The subsequent growth of the twin cities — St. Paul and Minneapolis — 
has fully justified his prediction. He died of cholera while making a 
tour of the firm's trading stations along the shores of Lake Superior. 

George W. Ewing, u.sually called "Wash" Ewing, was for a number 
of years intimately connected with the business interests of Peru and the 




political artairs of Miami eouuty. Old settlers remember him as 
pnuee of good fellows," eommanding in appearance and of superior 
intellectual attainments. In 1836, while still living at Loganspoi-t, he 
was elected state senator to represent the district composed of the counties 
of Cass, Miami and Fulton. When his mother died at Peru he procured 
for her remains a cofBn covered with black broadcloth, the first of the 
kind ever .seen there, and some peopk' looked upon it as "an unwarranted 
piece of extravagance." Some time after the death of his mother Mr. 
Ewing took up his residence in Fort Wayne, where he passed the closing 
years of his long and active career. He belonged to that ehiss of which 
it has been said: "In every age some men have carried the torch of 
progress: had it not been for them we would be naked and uneivilizctl 

People of the present generation can hardly understand or api)rcci- 
ate the toil and hardships of the men who boldly marched into the 
wilderness, robbed it of its terrors and paved the way for the comforts 
and luxuries of our modern civilization. One of the first necessities of 
the immigrant was to provide shelter for himself and family. This 
shelter was almost invai'iably a log cabin, rarely exceeding sixteen by 
twenty feet in size, generally of but one room, which was living room, 
dining room, bed room and kitchen, though in warm weather the cooking 
was sometimes done out of doors. When several families came at the 
same time to a new country, one cabin was built, in which all wouhi live 
together until others could be erected. Money was practically unknown 
on the frontier and hired labor was seldom depended on for a.ssistance 
in establishing a home and clearing a farm. To overcome this coniiilion 
the settlers would "sw-ap work" by helping each other to do those things 
that one man could not well do by himself. Hence, when a settler wanted 
to build a cabin he would cut his logs, drag them to the site selected, and 
then invite his neighbors to the "raising." 

The house-raising was a social as well as an industi'ial event. While 
the men were engaged in the erection of the new dwelling, the '■women 
folks" would gather to prepare dinner, each one bringing from her own 
store such articles of food as she thought others might not be able to 
supply. Jf the weather was fair the dinner woidd be served out of 
doors, upon an improvised table under the shade of the trees; l)Ut if too 
cold for that, it would be served at the cabin of the nearest settler. -And 
that dinner! While it boasted no terrapin nor eanvas-back duck, no 
foreign wines or delicacies with high-sounding names, it consisted of 
wholesome, nutritious food, with appetite as the ])riiici]»al sauce, and was 
always accompanied by mirth and good-natured badinage. 

When the nicii were assembled at the i)lace four of tiii-ii' nuinln'i' wt-i'c 


selected to "carry up the corners." These men, skilled in the use of the 
ax, would take their positions at the four corners of the cabin and as 
the logs were pushed up to them on poles or "skids," would shape a 
"saddle" upon the top of one log and then cut a uotoh in the under side 
of the next to iit upon the saddle. The man who could "carry up a 
corner," keeping the walls fairly plumb by his eyes alone, was consid- 
ered an artist. At the time the cabin was raised no openings were left 
for the doors and windows, these being sawed or chopped out after the 
walls were up. An opening would also be made at one end for a fire- 
place, which was usually wide enough to take in sticks of wood four or 
five feet long. If stone was convenient, & stone chimney- would be built 
outside the cabin, but in many instances the chimney would l)e con- 
structed of sticks and clay. 

The roof of the cabin was made of oak claplioards, split or rived out 
with an instrument called a frow, and were usually three or four feet 
long. Nails, and in fact hardware of all kinds, were scarce and not 
infrequently the cabin would be finished without a single piece of iron 
beiiig used in its construction. The clapboards on the roof would be 
held in place" by poles running lengthwise of the cabin and fastened to 
the logs at each end by wooden pins : the door would be made of boards 
fastened to the cross battens with wooden pins, provided witli wooden 
hinges and a wooden latch, which could be lifted from the outside by 
pulling a thong of deerskin that passed through the door. At night the 
string was drawn inside and the door was locked. This custom gave rise 
to the expression "the latch-string is always out," .signifying that the 
^^sitor would be welcome at any time. 

Many pioneer cabins had no floor except "mother earth." Others 
were provided with a puncheon floor. The puncheons were slabs of tim- 
ber, split as nearly the same thickness as possible, and after the floor 
was laid the surface would be smoothed with an adz. Lumber was not 
only a luxury, but it was also hard to obtain. In many of the frontier 
settlements the first lumber was made with a whip-saw. By this method 
the log, which was first hewTi on two sides with a broad-ax, would be 
placed iipon a scafi'old high enough to permit a man to stand upright 
beneath it. The scaffold was nearly always constructed on a hillside, 
so that the log could be rolled or slid upon it from above. On the upper 
surface of the log lines would be stricken showing the thickness of the 
boards. One man would then take his place on the top of the log to 
guide the saw bj' the lines and to pull it upward, while the other would 
stand below to pull the saw downward, giving it the cutting stroke. 
It was a slow and tedious process, but it was the one in use in many 
localities until some enterprising citizen would build a sawmill. 

iirsToKV OF :\iTA:\n rorxTV 91 

As matches were rarely to be seen in the pioneer settlements, the 
tire in the great fireplace would not be allowed to become extinniiislicd. 
If such an unfortunate event should occur, some member of the la mil v 
would be sent to the nearest neighbor's to secure a burning biaiid »v 
a shovelful of coals to replenish the supply. During the fall and win- 
ter evenings the light of the open fire was often the only light in flic 
cabin. In warm weather, when a fire in the cabin would be uncom- 
fortable, light would be supplied by partially filling a shallow dish 
with bear's grease, in wliich was inunersed a piece of rag wick, one end 
of whicli would project over the edge of the dish. The projecting end 
was then lighted, and, while this primitive lamp emitted both snuike 
and the odor of burning grease, it afforded the iiousewife sufficient 
light to attend to her duties. Later came the "tallow dip," which was 
made by dipping a loosely-twisted cotton wick in melted tallow, repeat- 
ing the operation until a sufficient amount of tidiow adhered to the 
wick to make it stand upright, when it would i)e placed in a candle- 
stick. It was an improvement over the l)ear's grease lamp, but in time 
it was succeeded by the molded candle. The candle molds of tin usually 
eon.sisted of six or eight tubes, each the size and shape of a candle, 
soldei-ed together. Through the center of each tube would be drawn 
a cotton wick, then molten tallow would be poured in until the molds 
were filled, when the whole would be set in a cool jdace for the tallow 
to harden. Sometimes there would be but one set of candle molds in a 
settlement and they passed from bouse to house. 

Very little factory made furniture ever found its way to the frontier, 
so the pioiu'er furnished his cabin with furniture of his own manu- 
facture. A few clapboards, smoothed with the draw-knife, were sup- 
ported on pins driven into holes bored in tlie caliin walls to form shelves 
for the dishes. If the family could afford it, tins home-made "china 
closet"' would be provided with a curtain of cotton cloth, but in many 
instances the curtain was lacking. Tables were formed by nailing or 
liinning a few whip-sawed lioartls or clapiioards to battens and the top 
thus formed would be supported on trestles. When not in use the top 
could be stooti on edge against the wall and the trestles stacked in one 
corner, in order to make more room in the cabin. Benches or stools 
made of puncheons took the place of chairs. These were supporte(| on 
pins di-iveii into holes bored with a larger auger, at an angle that would 
permit the legs to flare outward, thus giving the bench or stool greater 
stability. Two hooks fastened to the wall supi)orted the long barreled 
rifle, from the muzzle of which hung the bullet pouch and powder horn, 
while from the corners of the cabin dangled Inuiches of boneset, penny- 


royal and other herbs, with which the mother treated the ordinary ail- 
ments of childhood without the expense of suinmonin": a physician. 

The meals for the family were cooked at the fireplace, a long-handled 
skillet, with an iron lid, and an iron kettle being the principal cooking 
utensils. The former was used for frying meats and baking bread and 
the latter was used in the preiwration of tlie "boiled dinner." Game 
was plentiful when the first white men located in the Wabash valley, 
and, as almost every pioneer was an e.xjjert in the use of the rifle, the 
forest was depended on to furnish the meat supply. With breadstuft's 
it was different. Settlers were often compelled to go for miles to some 
mill run by water power, or improvise some method of converting the 
corn into meal at home. In the fall, before the grains of corn became 
too hard, the grater was used. This was an instrument made by punch- 
ing a nundier of small holes through a sheet of tin and then fastening 
the edges of the sheet to a board so the rough side of the tin would be 
outward and somewhat curved. Over the rough surface the ears of 
corn would be rubbed back and forth, the meal passing through the 
holes in the tin and sliding down the board into a pan. Often a mortar 
would be made by burning a depression in the top of a stump near the 
cabin, then cleaning out the charred wood, and in this mortar the corn 
or other grain would be crushed with a pestle of hard wood. Some- 
times the grain would be rubbed between two flat stones until it was 
reduced to i^roper consistency for making bread. Some people of the 
present day would proliably "turn up their noses'' were such bread 
placed before them, but the pioneers ate it, enjoyed it and thrived on it. 

The man who wore "store clothing" in those days was looked upon 
as an aristocrat. After the wolves were driven out, nearly every set- 
tler kept a few sheep, and in every neighborhood there were one or 
more sets of hand cards — broad backed brushes with short wire teeth, 
all bent sliglitly in one direction — which were used for converting the 
wool into rolls. These rolls were then spun into wool on the old-fash- 
ioned spinning wheel, which was turned with a stick having a small 
knob at one end, the housewife walking back and forth as the rapidly 
revolving spindle reduced the roll into yarn. The young woman who 
could spin her "six cuts" a day was looked upon as eligible to be the 
wife of some thrift.y young farmer, but how many of the young ladies 
who graduated in the Indiana high schools in 1913 know what "six 
cuts" means? After the yarn was si)un it was colored with indigo or 
the bark of some tree — most frequently the walnut — and then woven 
into flannel, jeans or linsey on the old liaud loom. Girls wore flannel or 
linsey dresses, generally made by themselves as soon as they were old 
enough to learn how to handle a needle. Boys were clad in jeans or 


(itluM- lioiucspuu material, their suits liping made by their mothers or 
sisters by iiand, as the sewing maehine liad not yet been invented. The 
husband and father often wore buckskin clothing, for the reason that 
it was more durable and would stand the rough usage clothing was 
bound to undergo, and the principal headgear of botii father and sons 
was the home-made coonskin cap, with 1lir riiiLied tail lil'lrn lel't to 
hang down the back of the neck. 

Salt was a luxury that befoi'c tlie coinpli'tidii of the Wabash & Erie 
Canal sold as high as ten dollars inf baiicl. Settlers would therefore 
organize themselves into jiarties and go to the salt springs or "licks," 
where each one woiUil evaporate a year's siipi)l\'. After the completion 
of the eaual the price came down to four dollars per barrel. 

Other instances of "swapping work'' were in the log-rollings and 
in harvest time. When a settler undertook to dear a piece of ground 
for cultivation, he felled the trees and cut or burned the logs into 
leugths convenient for handling, after which he would invite the neigh- 
bors to assist him in piling them in heaps so that they could be burned. 
Log-rollings were tests of physical strength. The men were divided 
into pairs, according to tlieir muscular ability, and each pair was pro- 
vided with a stick of tough wood called a "hand-spike."' Two of the 
strongest men would "make daylight" under the log by placing their 
hand-spike under one end and raising it high enough for the otliers 
to get their spikes in place. When all were ready they came up together, 
and woe to the unfortunate individual who allowed his lingers "to take 
mud" by his inability to lift his share of the load, for the laugh would 
be on him for the rest of the day, unless he could redeem himself liy 
causing his partner "to take mud." 

In the early harvests the wheat was cut with a i-cai)iiig hook — a 
crooked steel blade with a serrated edge and a wooden handle at one 
end. As more land was cleared and the acreage of the wheat crop 
correspondingly increased, conditions denuuided a better method of 
harvesting grain and the cradle was invented. This implement con- 
sisted of four or five fingcfs of tough wootl, bent to conform to the curva- 
ture of the scythe, over which they were motinted in a light framework. 
As the grain was cut off by the scythe it fell ii|ion the fingers and could 
be 'thrown in a straight swath for the binder. A good cradler could 
cut from four to five acres a day. It was not uiuisual to see half a dozen 
or more eradlers in a field, each followed by a binder, and behind came 
a shocking party which stacked the sheaves into shocks. When one 
man's wheat was taken care of the entire party would move to the field 
where the wheat was the ripest, and so on until the wheat crop of the 
whole neighborhood would be made ready for the tlail, which was the 


primitive threshing: machine. After a while the tini] gave way to the 
old "ground hog:" threslier. wliieii separated the grain from the straw, 
hut did not clean it from llie chaff. Then the fanuing-niill was in- 
vented and many a lioy wlio wanted to spend the afternoon along some 
creek fishing for "shiners" has heen compelled to turn the crank of 
the fanuing-mill wliile his father fed the wheat and chaff intn the 
machine. In time some one became wise enough to combine the ground 
hog and the fanning-mill into one machine and the separator was the 

The "house-raising," the "log-rolling" and the "harvesting l)ee" 
were nearly always followed by a frolic. On these occasions whisky 
was provided for the men and sometimes a few of them would drink 
enough to become intoxicated. As a rule, however, good order pre- 
vailed. While the men were at work the women would join hands in 
preparing the meals, and the affair would generally wind up with a 
dance. In every settlement there was at least one fiddler, as the pioneer 
violinist was called, and his services would be called into rei|uisition at 
tlie "house-warming," when the new cabin would be properly dedi- 
cated, or to celebrate the completion of the harvest or the log-rolling. 
The waltz, the two-step and the tango were unknown, but their places 
were well supplied with the minuet and the old Virginia reel, or even 
the "In'eakdowu," iu which main strength and physical endurance 
took the place of the "poetry of motion." The music furnisheil by the 
"one-man orchestra" was probably not classic, in the light of modern 
development, liut such tunes as "Old Zip Coon," "Turkey in the 
Straw," "Money Musk," "The Irish Washerwouuui " and "The Wind 
that Shakes the Barley" ottered splendid opportunities for "tripping 
the light fantastic toe," and it is doubtful whether the society people 
who attend a president's inaugural ball ever get more pleasure out of 
the function than did the early settlers in the wilds of Miami county 
in the dedication of some new cabin. 

Other auuisements were the shooting matches, that were generally 
held about the holiday season, the husking bees, pitching horseshoes, 
wrestling, foot racing, and, after the orchards were old enough to bear 
fruit, the apple cuttings. Then there were the (luiltings and sheep- 
shearing contests, in which profit and pleasure were both considered. 
At the shooting match the prize for the best marksman was a turkey 
or a (piarter of a deer or beef. In the husking bee those present were 
divided into two parties, each under the direction of a captain ; the corn 
to be husked was divided into two piles, as nearly equal as possible, and 
the captain who "won the toss" took his choice of the piles. Then the 
contest began to see which party would first finish the pile of corn. Iu 

iiisToijv OF MIAMI rorxTV <jr, 

this iii;i1i-li hoth men and wouicii took i)art and the fellow who found 
a nd car of eorii was entitled to the privilege of kissing the lassie 
next to him. Sometimes the young men played the game in an under- 
hand way hy covertly passing the red ear from one to another. 

No survey of lands had been made when the first white men eame to 
the "\Val)ash valley. The settler marked out liis claim hy deadening a 
few ti'ees near a spring, or other suitahle site for a dwelling, and mark- 
ing a number of trees along the boundary with his initials. This method 
of establishing lines was known as the "Tomahawk Riglit, " and some- 
times had to be verified or paid for, but sueli claims were bought and 
sold for several years before the official survey was completed. 

Wild beasts were plentiful and often as the family sat around the 
fireplace, cracking nuts or popping corn, the howling of wolves could 
be distinctlj' heard in the woods near the humble dwelling. Cockrum, 
in his "Pioneer History of Indiana," tells the following story of two 
boys wlio came from the East to visit an uncle in Indiana: 

"A neighbor, who was wise in the lore of wild animals, took the boys 
out on a longed-for hunting trip. They had gone five or six miles from 
tile village, when they spied a large bear running away from them. Mr. 
Johnson instructed them to tie their horse to a tree, go to a place he 
pointed out, and not move from there, on any account, mitil he re- 
turned. On walking around, after waiting a long time, they saw two 
little animals wrestling much as boys do, rolling and tunililing over 
each other. They did not have the least idea what they were, but 
slipped up as closely as they could and made a rush to catch them, 
which they found hard to do, as the little culis were much more nimble 
than they looked. They chased them round over chunks and brash. 
Finally one of them ran into a hollow log and the younger lioy crawled 
in after it. The older boy finally caught the other little bear, when it 
set up a whining noise and at the same time scratched and bit him. 
In a few minutes he heard the lu'ush crackling, and looking up, he saw 
the old bear coming at him with full force. He let the cub go and 
climbed up a little tree, fortunately too snudl for the bear to climb. 
She would rear up on the tree as though she intended to climb it, and 
snarl and snort at the boy, who was dreadfully scared. About this time 
the little boy in the log had squeezed himself through so that he could 
reach the other cub, whereujwn it set up another cry. The old bear 
left the treed boy and ran to the log, and over and around it. uncertain 
where the came from. She commenced to tear away the wood, so 
she could get to the cub, for she was too large to get more than her head 
in the hollow of the log. They boys were thus imprisoned foi- more than 
two hours, when a shot was fired not far way. The boy up the tree set 


up a terrible hallooing:, and ^Ir. Johnson soon eanie in sight. A second 
shot soon killed ihe old bear. The young: bear was caugjht and tied;' 
;ind the little boy eaiiie cmt of the log dragging the other rub, which they 
also took home for a pet.'" 

Coekrum does not give the exact location where this inciilent oc- 
curred, but in the early days it conld have happened almost ajiywhere 
in the state of Indiana. But times have changed. The log cabin has 
given way to the modern residence, the tallow candle to the electric 
light, and the old grain cradle to the twine binder. Meals are no longer 
prepared in front of a blazing fire, where the cook was compelled to 
wear a deep sunbonnet to shield her face from the fierce heat. The 
gi'eat packing companies, with their refrigerating cars, supply the peo- 
ple of the cities with fresh meats. The spinning wheel and the old 
hand loom are now looked upon with curiosity as relics of a bygone 
civiliz::tion, and evei-ybody wears "store clothes." Yes, great progress 
ha.s been made since the first white men came to iliami county. The 
people of the present generation boast of the accomplishments of the 
last century, but are they any happier, or any more unselfish, than the 
pioneers who wore homespun and "swapped work" while they brought 
the wilderness under subjection.'"" 

"Work on the Wabash & Erie Canal was commenced at Foi't Wayne 
in February, 1832, and the legislature of Indiana, in anticipation of a of immigi-ation to the territory through which the canal was to 
pass, established several new counties. Jlore than three years before, 
Decendier 18, 1828, the general assembly passed an act organizing Cass 
county, which included all the territory now embraced in the counties 
of .Aliami, Wabash, Fnlton, Marshall, Kosciusko, Elkhart and St. Jo- 
seph, and portions of some of the adjoining counties. On February 2, 
1832. (lovernor Xoah Noble approved an act entitled "An act establish- 
ing the counties of Huntington, Wabash and Miami,"' Section 3 of which 
provided : 

"That from and after the first ^Monday in April next, all the ter- 
ritory included within the following bounds, to wit : Beginning at the 
northwest corner of section five (5), town twenty-nine (29), range five 
(5), being the northwest corner of Wabash county; thence south with 
the western boundary line of said county, twenty-four (24) miles; thence five (5) miles to the northwest corner of Grant county; thence south 
six (6) miles; thence west, to a point due south of range line divid- 
ing townships three (3) and four (4), east of the second principal meri- 
dian line; thence north with said range line to a point due west of the 
place of beginning; thence east to the place of beginning, shall form 


and (•(iiistitiitr a I'omity to lie known and designated by the name of the 
county of .Miami. " 

No provision was made for the organization of tlie new eounties, and, 
in fact, Section 4 of the act expressly set forth that "The several parts 
of said new eounties shall remain as they are now attached, for repi'e- 
seutative. senatorial and-jiixlicial purposes." 

Within a few months after the passage of thr aiiovc art, it was dis- 
covered that it did not clearly define the boundaries of th.' county, and 
on January 30, 1833, Governor Noble approved an act. the preamble 
of which was as follows: "Whereas, there is an ambi,guity in the de- 
scription of the boundaries of the counties of Wabash and Miami, as 
designated in an act entitled, 'An act establishing the counties of Hunt- 
ington, Wabash and Miami,' approved Feiiruary 2. 1832, to remedy 
which, therefore, 

"Be it enacted," etc. Section 1 of the act following this preamble 
defined the boundaries of Wabash county, and Section 2 provided : 

"That the boundaries of the county of ^Nliami, as described in the 
act referred to in the foregoing section, be and they are hereby cliauged 
as follows: Beginning at the northeast corner of Section three, Town- 
sliij) 1wcnt\-nine, of Range five, being the noi-thwest corner of Wabash 
county; running thence south with the western lioundary of said county 
twenty-four miles; thence from the southwest corner of the county of 
Wabash, east four miles to the northwest corner of Grant county; thence 
.south six miles; tlicnce west fourteen miles; thence north with the range 
line dividing ranges three and four east of the second principal meridian, 
thirty miles : thence east ten miles, on the township line dividing town- 
ships twenty-nine and thirty, to tlie place of beginning." 

The northern, eastern and southern boundaries as established by 
this act form the boundary lines at the present day, but the western 
boundary was changed by the act of January 2, 1834, which made pro- 
visions for the location of the permanent county seat and the organi- 
zation of the county. Following are the principal provisions of this 
organic act : 

"Section 1. Be it Enacted by the General Assembly of the State 
of Indiana, That fi-om and after tlie first day of March next, the county 
of Miami shall enjoy the rights and jurisdiction which to separate and 
independent counties do or may properly belong. 

"Section 2. That Daniel Harrow, of the county of Putnam, Small- 
wood Noel, of the county of Allen, Joseph Tatman, of the county of Tip- 
pecanoe, and Henry Chase and John Barr, of the county of Carroll, 
be, and are hereby, appointed commissioners for the purpose of fixing 
the permanent seat of justice of said countv of Miami, agreeably to the 

Vol. 1— T 


provisions of an act to establish the seats of justice in new counties, ap- 
proved January 14, 1824. The comraissiouers. or a majority of them, 
shall convene at the house of Benjamin H. Scott, in said county, on the 
first Monday in June next, or as soon thereafter as a majority shall 
agree. ' ' 

Section 3 provided that the sheriff of Cass county should notify the 
commissioners of their appointment and the time and place of meeting, 
as designated by Section 2. 

"Section 4. The circuit and other courts of said county shall be 
held at the house of Benjamin H. Scott, or at any other place in said 
county to which said court may adjourn, until suitable accommodations 
can be had at the seat of justice thereof, after which the court shall 
be held at the county seat. 

"Section 5. The agent who shall lie apiwinted to superintend the 
sale of lots at the county seat of said .Miami county, shall reserve ten 
per centum out of the proceeds thereof, and also ten per centum out of 
all donations to said county, and pay the same over to such person or 
persons as may be lawfully appointed to receive the same, for the use 
of a county library for said county. 

"Section 6. The Board doing county business, when elected and 
qualified, may hold special sessions, not exceeding three during the first 
year after the organization of said county, and shall appoint a lister 
and make out all other necessary appointments, and do and perform all 
other business which might have been necessary to be performed at any 
other regular session, and take all necessary steps to collect the state and 
county revenue. 

"Section 7. The teri'itory included in the following boundary, to 
wit: Beginning at the southwest corner of the county of Miami: run- 
ning thence west two miles ; thence north, with the section lines, thirty 
miles to the northeast corner of section three (3), in township twenty- 
nine (29), range three (3) ; thence east two miles, on the line dividing 
townships twenty-nine (29) and thirty (30), to the northwest corner 
of the county of Miami (being a portion of the territory now belong- 
ing to the county of Cass), shall be and is hereby attached to the county 
of iliami, and shall hereafter constitute and form a part and portion 
of the territory of the said county of iliami." 

The county was attached to the eighth judicial circuit for judicial 
purposes, and to the county of Cass for representative purposes. 

No record of the proceedings of the eommissionei-s appointed to lo- 
cate the seat of justice has been found, and if their report was filed it 
was probably destroyed in the courthouse fire of 1S43. It is known, 
however, that they met at the house of Benjamin H. Scott, in accord- 

IllST(Mi">' (»K MIAMI CorXTV 9ij 

iiiiw witli the i)njvisioiis of tlic act, and dwidcd upon ;i location for tlie 
county seat. Stephen says: "Some time during the siiniiricr of 1S;J4, 
the commissioners appointed Iiy the legishiture, for the purpose of 
changing the county seat from Aliamisport to Peru, met in the former 
place and ordered the change. . . . The proprietors of the site of 
Peru, in consideration of the change of the county seat, donated tlie 
public square and built the court-house and jail." 

John Crudson, John W. Miller and Alexander Jameson were ap- 
pointed commissioners of the new county and held their first session at 
the house of John .McGregor on Wednesday, June 4, 1834. Ben.jamin 
II. Scott was appointed clerk pro tern, and John McGregor sheritf. The 
first business transacted by the board was the appointment of William 
M. Keylmru as county agent and Abner Overman as county treasurer. 
Louis Drouillard made application for the right to operate a ferry across 
the Wabash river, whicli was taken under advisement by the board until 
the ne.\t term, when his petition was granted upon payment of five dol- 
lars for the privilege. The first money paid into the county was for 
grocers" licenses issued l)y the board at the tii-st session to Nathaniel 
^IcGuire and William Thompson, each of whom paid the sum of $12.50 

On the .second day of this first session the board met at the house 
of Benjamin II. Scott, who opened the court in the absence of the sher- 
iff. The bond of William M. Reybum for $1,500 as county agent was 
approved. His principal duty was to attend to the sale of lots, receive 
any funds donated for the use of the county and disburse the county 
revenues as directed by the commissioners. Two civil townships were 
formed^ the nortliern one to be known as JefTer.son and the southern as 
Peru, and an election was ordereil in each township for justice of the 
peace on Saturday, June 21, 1834, the voting place in Peru township 
to be at Miamisport antl in Jefferson at the house of the Widow Wilkin- 
son, in the village of .Mexico. For Jefferson township William Bain was 
appointed inspector of election and John Plaster constable, and for 
Peru townshij) William Goats was appninted iiispe<'toi- and James Petty 

At a special session of the commissioners held on June ID. 1834, the 
clerk was ordered to make out a poll book for an election to be held on 
the first Monday in August, and the first grand and petit jurors were 
appointed. The grand jury was composed of Zriiliaiiiah Wade, George 
W. Ilolman, John Plaster, William X. Hood, John M. Jackson, Jacob 
Linzee, Abner Overman. John Hoover, Joseph Glymer, Aaron Khein- 
berger, Ira Evans and William Coats. The persons designated as petit 
jurors were: George 'I'ownsend, Jesse Wilkinson, Xathanirl McGuire. 



John Wiseman, James T. Listen, William il. Reyburn, John Saunders, 
Ratlitt' Wilkinson, Richai-d Ransford, Walter D. Xesbit, Robert Wade, 
Isaac ]Marquiss, John Ray, William il. Wilkinson, Isaac Stewart, John 
Smith. William Cannon, Alexander Jameson. Joseph B. Campbell, Stew- 
art Forgy and James C. Taylor. 

On August 4, 1834, the first election for county officers was held at 
the house of Louis Drouillard, in ]Miamisport. Sixty votes were cast. 
Benjamin H. Scott was elected clerk; Jacob Linzee, sheriff; John W. 
Miller, Alexander Jameson and John Crudson were continued as county 
commissioners, and Jacob Wilkinson and Stephen G. Shanks were elected 
associate judges. 

Public Buildings 

Early in the spring of 1835 the county ofSces were removed from 
IMiamisport to Peru and at the March term of the commissioners' court 
it was ordered that a county jail be erected upon the northeast corner 
of the public square, and a courthouse in the center of the square. Plans 
and specifications for the courthouse adopted by the board at this ses- 
sion provided for a brick building, forty feet sciuare and two stories in 
height, which was to be erected by the proprietors of the town, in con- 
sideration of the seat of justice being removed to Peru. Samuel Mc- 
Clure was awarded the contract for the erection of the building and it 
was completed and accepted by the commissioners early in the year 1843. 
It was a substantial edifice, conveniently arranged, and at the time it 
was regarded as one of the model courthouses of the state. But the 
county did not long enjoy its use, for on the night of March 16, 1843, 
the building, with all its contents, was destroyed by fire. 

On April 7, 1843, the board of commissioners issued an order for 
the erection of a brick building, 16 by 45 feet, with stone foundation, 
to be made as nearly fire-proof as possible and to be divided into three 
rooms for the offices of clerk, auditor and treasurer. George W. Good- 
rich was awarded the contract for the construction of this building, 
which was to be located upon the public square, for the sum of $769.00, 
one-half of which was to be paid on June 1, 1844, and the remainder m 
one year from that date. In June, 1848, iMr. Goodrich was employed to 
erect another buUding on the public square for the recorder's othee. 
It was to be 16 by 20 feet in dimensions and was located near the clerk s 
office These temporary buildings served as the executive offices of Miami 
county for nearly ten years, when the commissioners decided to erect a 
new courthouse upon the public square. 

The corner-stone of the building was laid with appropriate cere- 



iiioiiu's on .July 14. KSoti, by A. C. Downey, .urand uiastor of the Free 
and Accepted Masons of Indiana. Nathan Crawford was the contractor 
and the orijsrinal contract price of the was $20,600, hut some 
changes and additions were made that increased tlie cost to some extent. 
The building was 60 In- 80 feet in dimensions, \\itli tlie principal county 
offices on the first floor, tlie court rooms on the second, jury rooms on the 
third, and a portion of the large basement was used for a jail. Four 
large fire-proof vaults wei'c i)rovided for the safekeeping of the rec- 
ords. The building, which was of brick and constructed in the "'Nor- 
man castle"" style of architectui'c, was completeti in lMr),S. Some time in 
the seventies a mansard roof and clock were added and some other nec- 

MiA.Mi County Court House 

essary repairs were made, with which the structure was used by the 
county until the erection of the present courthouse. 

In the summer of 1905 a petition, bearing the requisite numbei' of 
names, was i)resente<l to the board "f county commissioners, praying 
for the erection of a new cciurthouse. The matter was presented to the 
county council and on September 7, 1905, the council, in regular ses- 
sion, apjiropriated $280,000 for a new building. On October 6, 1905, 
the council met in special session and made an additional appropriation 
of $14,000. with which to employ an architect, and at the same time 
authorized the issue of bonds to the amount of $280,000. These bonds 
were to be of the denomination of $1,000 each and were to be divided 
into twenty installments of $14,000 each, the first installment to lie due. 


;ind payable on January 1, 1907, and one installnu'iit on the first day 
of January annually thereafter until 1926, the bonds to bear four per 
cent interest. 

On October 19, 1905, the board of commissioners — John E. Davis, 
James S. Bair and Alfred Ramsey — met in special session to consider 
the jdans sulmiittcd by \arious architects. After some time spent in 
this work the board. <in December IS, 1905, entered into an agreement 
with the tii'm of Lt'hman & Schmitt, of Cleveland. Ohio, to furnish plans 
and do all other necessary work appertaininj^' to an architeet in the 
erection of the new courthouse. 

The old Pri'sbyterian church on West Third street was leased as 
temporary (piartei's for the count.x' ofticers, and on Kebniary 115, 1906, 
the clerk, auditor, treasurer, reeortler and sheriff were ordered to be- 
iiin the removal of their offices by the 15th of ^larch. In the meantime 
Jacob Casper had become a member of the board of commissioners. He 
protested against the action of the board in thus securing temporary 
quarters and his protest was made a matter of record, but the ma.jority 
of the lioard voted to proceed according to the original designs. 

On April 10, 1906, proposals for the construction of the new court- 
house were ordered to he advertised for. the competition to be open 
until two o'clock p. m., June 7. 1906. The proposal of P. H. ^IcCor- 
mick & Company, of Columbus, Indiana, was accepted, and on Jidy 5, 
1906, the lioard entered into a contract with that firm to complete the 
building within twenty-six months from August 1. 1906. for the sum 
of !ji2;j7,000. Owing to in.iunction proceedings, which went through 
the supreme court of the state before a final adjustment was reached, 
some delay was experienced and the building was not comiileteil until 
December .'31, 191(1. 

The litigation which delayed the construcfion of the building grew 
out of a difference between the county auditor and the boaril of com- 
missioners at the time of the selection of an architect, the board choos- 
ing one firm while the auditor was activel.v favoring another. The dif- 
ference grew more pronounced and spreatl to the people, among whom 
two factions rapidly devehiped. Each side was supported by prominent 
men and taxjiayers, intent upon exhiliiting their confidence in the hon- 
est.y and fidelit.v of their favorites among the contending officials. The 
following county campaign found the contest waging bitterly in the 
canvass for county connnissioners and many ugly charges were made 
by each side. The usual issues in such an election were also involved 
and no one can say positively what decided the matter, but the result 
was that the candidates favored by the auditor's faction were elected. 
Mr. Casper was one of those elected and his protest mentioned above was 


iiiadc to voice tlic sent iniriits of the o|)|)Ositi()ii to tlic olil hoard. Ilut 
ill all the suits, jiraiid .jury invest iji'al ions, appeals, ete., the orifjinal 
action of the eoiiiity hoarii which he^'an the proceedings was not dis- 
tufhed and it is lielieved tiiat notiung was developed at any time to 
desci'edit eithci' of the i'i\al factions. Thus, though all eniled hap|)ily, 
there was a tense feeling and hitter for many months. 

At the Sei)teml)er term in 1908 the l)oard of comiiii.ssioners adojited 
a series of resolutions relative to the laying of the corner-stone, the date 
for which was fixed for Octol)er 7, 1D08. The principal features of the 
resolutions were iis follows: 1. That the corner-stone he laid at tiie 
southwest coi-nei- ol' the building. 2. That the only inscription on the 
stone should he the date '■October 7, A. D. IDOiS." .'i. That the cere- 
monies should l)e in charge of the grand lodge of Free and Accepted 
;\!asons of Indiana. 4. That the arrangement of a program for the 
occasion should be delegated to the Peru Connnercial Club. 5. That the 
board, through the auditor, invite all organized lodges and societies in 
IMiami county to attend. 6. That each church and lodge iu the county 
prepare a list ot' members for deposit in the corner-stone and file the 
.same with the auditor at least ten days before October 7th. In addition 
to these lists the board decitled that the corner-stone should contain all 
the documents, etc., taken fi'oin the corner-stone of the old courthouse; 
a coj)y of each newsjjaper iniblislu'd in Miami county; the names of the 
nu'nd)ers of the ;\Iiami county bar; the names of the county officei-s, and 
such other documents or articles as might be agreed upon by the board 
and the eonnnittee of arrangements. 

October 7, 1908, was a i-ed-letter day in the calendar of Miami 
count.v. It was estimated that twenty thousanil people were present to wit- 
ness the ceremony of laying the coi-ner-stone of the new temple of .iustice. 
Charles K. Hughes, as chairman of the Commerciaf Club's committee 
of arrangements, had jirovided for a procession prior to the laying of 
the corner-stone. Of tiiis procession F. 'SI. Stutesman was grand mar- 
shal. Following him came a detachment of the city police. Then in the 
order named came the Third Regiment band, the carriages containing 
the county conunissioners, the contractors and architects, the speakers 
foi- the occasion, the county and city officials. After the carriages came 
the Peru Fire Department, fifty mounted members of the Horse Thief 
Detective Association, forty automobiles di-iven by their owners, the 
!\Iaey band. Company L. of the Indiana National Guard, the Denver 
baiul, the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers, the Pfotherhood of 
Locomotive Firemen, the various trades unions and labcjr organiza- 
tions of the county, the Amboy band, the manufacturers of Peru, the 
Punkei' Hill band, tlie Miami County IVIedical Society, the Red Men's 



bajid, the several fraternal societies, iiu-liidiii-;: tlie Grand Army of the 
Republic, the Elks" band of Logansport, the Masonic bodies and tlie 
gi"and lodge officers. 

When the procession arrived at the public square, Mr. Hughes 
mounted the platform that had been prepared by the contractor at the 
corner-stone and reported to President Arthur L. Bodurtha of the 
Connuercial Club, that his committee had completed all arrangements 
for the ceremonies. Mr. Bodurtha, acting in the capacity of chairman 
of the civic exercises, then introduced Hon. Charles A. Cole, who de- 
livered a masterly oration suitable to the occasion, reviewing the growth 

The Old Court House 

and development of the county since the first courthnuse had l)een 
erected more than sixty-five years before. Columbus II. Hall, of Frank- 
lin, spoke for the Masonic fraternity, and Grand Master Charles N. 
Mikels made a short address, after which the stone was placed in posi- 
tion according to the ilasonic rites. 

Besides the articles designated by the commissioners at the Septem- 
ber term, the stone contained a directory of the city of Peru, a list of the 
officers and members of the Peru Commercial Club, a roster of the 
Miami county Medical Society, a list of the rural mail routes from the 
Peru postoffice, four five-dollar national bank bills from the First Na- 
tional Bank of Peru, a ten-dollar national bank bill issued by tlie Citi- 
zens National Bank of Peru, an envelope from the contractors contain- 


iii.iT the iiaiiu's of tlu- nu'mhiTs of tlio tinu. tlit'ir foiviiiaa, I'lc, the 
iiess I'jiid of tlie architects, by-laws of the various ^Masonic bodies in the 
county, siuiiph's of o-rain furnished by the Canal Elevator Coin[)any, 
the official program and badges used during the ceremony, and a photo- 
graph of the Peru base ball club of 1908. 

The courthouse was formally dedicaled on April 6, 1911. Several 
Weeks before that date preparations for the event were commenced by 
the api)ointment of various committees. The executive committee was 
com])osed of Cliarlcs K. Iluglies. active cluiirnuui, Charles TT. Brown- 
ell, honorary cliairnian, James W. Ilurst, Benjamin Wilson, William 
A. Sutton, Frank C. Phelps, Alfred Ramsey, John C. Davis, Ezekiel 
V. Robbins. Frank Daniels. William Allen, Peler C. Stineman, Frank 
Bearss. Kdgar P. Kling, Noah ^liller, Janu>s S. Bair, Fi-ank Tsler, L. 
D. Lamin, Omer Holman and John Tomey. 

In the following list of committees the first named in each instance 
was chairman of the committee: Fiiumce, Charles Simons, John Tomey 
and James Bair; Reception, T. [M. Busby, T. Jf. Ginuey, Charles Ward, 
Joseph X. Tillett, B. E. Wallace. R. A. Edwards, John J. Kreutzer, R. 
IT. Bouslog. George C. ^filler, Hugh ilcCaffrey, Frank il. Stutesman 
ami ail the members of the executive committee; Invitation, Frank D. 
Butler. T. -M. Busby, T. il. Ginney, Charles Ward, W. A. Hammond, 
W. H. Zimmerman. E. T. Reasoncr, Omer Holman ; Decoration, Alsa 
Vance, Henry Kittner. Bernard B. Wallace and the county officials; 
Entertainment. Omer Holman, Henry Bailey and Harvey Cole: j\Iusic 
W. H. Augur. Charles .AI. Charters and T. (I. Stewart; Speakers. E. P. 
Kling, L. 1). Lamm and John Tomey; Press. W. H. Zimmerman. W. A. 
Woodring, A. L. Bodurtha. Charles Winter, Henry Myers. William 
McDowell. Louis Dice, D. 0. Melton, E. E. Miller, Omer Holman, Artiiur 
Petty and Thomas Walsh. 

BegiiHiing at 9 o'clock A. M. on the day of the ceremonies, con- 
certs were given by the Third Regiment band and the Peru City band, 
and at 1 -.'M) P. ^1. came the dedication proper. After music by the 
Third Regiment banil and an invocation by R(>v. Harry Nyce, the Miller 
Brothers (|Uartette rendered a selection. Then Judge J. T. Cox, in a 
short address, introduced Hon. Thomas R. ^larshall, governor of Indi- 
ana, who was the principal speaker of the occasion. Following Governor 
^larshall were vocal solos by Airs. Mary Elliott-IIenness and Fred 
DeBolt, music by the Third Regiment band and the Peru City Orches- 
tra, and addresses by Judge Joseph \. Tillett and P. II. McCormack, the 
builder of the courthouse. 

At 7 :30 that evening was held another meeting, at which 
were made by Ethan T. Reasoner, Frank D. Butler, N. N. Antrim and 


Harvey Cole. At 9 o'clock the members of the various committees 
and the invited guests repaired to the Bearss Hotel, where a banquet 
was given by the contractors, P. H. MeCoi-mack & Company. Frank 
D. Butler acted as toastmaster and responded to the toast "The Occa- 
sion." Other toasts and responses were as follows: "The Designer of 
Our New Courthouse," Theodore Schmitt ; "The Constructor of Our 
New Courthouse." P. H. ^McCormack: "The Press of Our City and 
County," A. L. Bodurtha; "The Best City on the Banks of the Wabash, 
Its People, Buildings and Grounds," C. Y. Andrews; "Justice Old and 
New from a Lawyer's Standpoint." Ethan T. Reasoner; "Mine Host," 
John F. Lawrence. 

At the evening meeting there was both vocal and instrumental music 
and the ]irogram at the ban(|uet was interspersed by appropriate selec- 
tions rendered by the orchestra. 

The new courthouse is eon.structed of Indiana oolitic limestone, is 
three stories in height, and is of neat and attractive design. On the 
first and second floors are the various county offices and the third floor 
is occupied by the court room, witness and jury rooms, etc. As one 
enters the building from Broadway he will notice on the left a large 
marble tablet giving the names of the county officers during the erec- 
tion of the building, the names of the contractors and architects and 
the date of completion, while on the right is another tablet giving the 
location of the different county offices. Altogether, Miami county has 
one of the model courthouses of the state. 

The first county jail was a small log structure erected Viy .Matthew 
Fenimore on the northeast corner of the public square. It would not be 
considered much of a prison in the present age, Init at the time it was 
built it was ample for the county's needs, it contained no massive iron 
doors or cells, but it was strong enough to hold the prisoners committed 
to its keeping until it was destroyed by lire in 1852. The county was 
then without a regular jail until the completion of the courthouse in 
1858, when the basement of that building was fitted up with cells for 
the detention of prisoners. Here the jail remained until the erection 
of the present Imihling at the northwest corner of Fifth and Waliash 


On June 16. 1898. the connnissioners purcliased the lot on tliat cor- 
ner (Lot No. 225, original plat of the town of Peru) from Salome 
Koerner for $1,425, as a site for a new jail, and the following day the 
purchase was approved by Jabez T. Cox, then judge of the circuit 



A special session of tlie eominissioiicrs \v;is callrd to meet on Jmiui- 
;ii-y 1(1, IS!)!), to consider the question of erect ini^' a new jail ami tlie 
iiiinntes of that special session contain the following entry: 

"The lioartl, after due consider'ation of the matter, are of the opin- 
ion llial a pnlilic- necessity exists for the huilding; of a sheriff's resi- 
dence and jail, and that the same ought to ln' built during the |)resent 
year.'' aiul matle the following order: 

■"It is ordereil that a sheriff's residence and jail lie liuilt the pres- 
ent year of IS!)!) on Lot 22.1 in the original plat of the town i now city) 

Miami ('oixtv .Tail 

ol' I'lTU, .Miami I'Oiinty. in the State ol' I iidi;iii,'i. owiicil liy .Miami I'ouiily 
,iiiil purchased for that purjiose, that the same shall not cxcccmI in cost 
thirty thousand dollars." 

.•\t the same session an invitation was extendfd to archilects to sub- 
mit |il:ins, the Ijoard rest'iving the right to reject iui.v or all such de- 
signs. On .lanuary VA, 1S!)[), the hoard adopted the plans submitted l).v 
the Pauly -Jail Building and Maniirariuring ('om|)any, of St. Louis. Mis- 
.sonri. the plans to be submitted to and ai)])roved by the State Board 
of Charities. This board recommended some alterations in the plans, 
which were made by the Pauly Company, and the county altorney was 


directed to serve notice upon Mrs. Salome Koerner that the eouiity 
wanted possession of the lot by the 1st day of March. 

On February 23, 1899, the county attorney was instructed to ad- 
vertise for bids for the erection of the buildins- and on April 22. 1899. 
the contract was awarded to Clifton & Andres for the general construc- 
tion of the residence and jail for .$14,197.70; the contract for the steam 
heating, plumbing, gas fitting, etc., was at the same time given to :\Iichael 
Reilly for .$2,100.56. and the contract for the iron and steel cell work 
to the Pauly Company for $8,577.50, making the total cost of the build- 
ing $24,875.76, though some .slight changes were made that increased 
the cost a little beyond this amount. The corner-.stone of the building 
bears the inscription : "Erected in 1899. Jesse W. Miller, Daniel King, 
A. W. Clending, County Commissioners. Clifton & Andres, Builders." 
The building was completed early in the year 1900 and since that time 
Miami county's jail compares favoi-ably with those in other counties 
of the state of similar size and population. 

An account of the early courts of the county may be found in the 
chapter on Bench and Bar, and a history of the county intinnary or 
asylum is included in Chapter XVIIT. 



Formation of the First Two C'i\ii, Townsiiii'.s — Now Fourteen in 
THE County— Allen— Butler— Clav— Deer Creek— Erie— Harri^ 
SON — Jackson — Pioneer Settlers ix Each — First Births, Mar- 
riages AND Deaths — Mills and Other Hvrlv Industries — Schools 
— Early Religious Services — Towns and Villages — Railroads — 
Miscellaneous Events. 

As stated in the chapter on Si'ttlriiiinl iind Organization, tlic first 
civil townships in ]\Iiaiiii foiinty wtTc crccteil l)y tlic board of county 
commissioners at the first session in June, 1834. The county was then 
divided into the two townships called Jefferson and I'eru, hut authori- 
ties dif^'ei- as to their boundaries and extent. Stei)hens, in his History 
of Miami County (p. 57), says: "The land iji the south part of the 
county had not yet been sold by the Indians. That noi'tii of the Wabash 
was oi-iicred to be divided into two townsliips. to l)c known as Peru and 

A History of Miami County published by Brant & Fuller, in 1SS7, 
says on page 276: "During- the first term of coiiunissioners' court, 
which was held at ilianiisport, June, 1884, the county wys divided into 
two townships by commencing at the east line of the county and run- 
ning on the line dividing Sections 22 and 15 to the west line of the 
county, the townsiup north of said line to be known and designated as 
Jefferson towniship, the one south to be known and designated by the 
name of Peru township." 

There is something lacking in both these descri|)tions. Stephens 
fails to give th(> dividing line between the townships and the latter 
account fails to take into consideration the fact that there are five 
places in the county where lines could he run dividing Sections 22 and 
15 — one in each tier of Congressional townships. If only that portion 
of the county lying north of the Wabash was included in the two town- 
ships first created, and the dividing line was between Sections 22 and 
15, it was probably the line dividing those sections in Township 28, 
which line passes through Denver and now forms the northern boundary 



of Jefferson township. The line dividing Sections 22 and 15 in Township 
27 is half a mile south of the present southern boundary of Jefferson 
township. It is equally distant from the northern and southern bound- 
aries of tlie county. If the commissioners anticipated the acquisition 
of the Indian lands south of the Wabash, and included the entire county 
in the two townships of Peru and Jefferson, this line was probably the 
one designated. The destruction of the early records makes it impos- 
sible to consult the official act of the board in the erection of these first 
two townships. 

As the population of the county increased new townships were cre- 
ated from time to time, until now there are fourteen in the county, viz. : 
Allen, Butler, Cla.v, Deer Creek, Erie, Harrison, Jackson, Jefferson, 
Perry, Peru, PijDe Creek, Ricliland, Union and AVashington. 

Allen Township 

This township occupies the northwest corner of tlie count.v. It is 
bounded on the north by Fulton county : on the east by Perry township ; 
on the south by Union township, and on the west by the county of Ful- 
ton. Its area is about 14,600 acres, or nearly twenty-three square miles. 
The surface is generally level, though in the southern and southeastern 
portions there are some irregular undulations. When the first white 
men came to this part of the county they found a dense forest of beech, 
ash, walnut, ])oplar, maple, several species of oak, elm and maple trees. 
Much of the land was then so swampy that it was unfit for cultivation, 
but a thorough system of artificial drainage was completed in time, and 
now some of the best crops in the northern part of the county are raised 
in Allen township- Among the early settlers the marshes were allowed 
to gi-ow up in cranberries and whortleberries, but since the land has 
been reclaimed by drainage these crojis liave given way to others yield- 
ing greater profit. Agriculture and stock raising are the principal occu- 
pations. Wheat, oats, corn, hay and potatoes are the leading agricul- 
tural products. 

John Ilorton is credited witli being the first actual wliite settler in 
Allen township. Late in the year 1834 he selected a claim in the north- 
western part of the township, where he built a cabin and liegan the 
work of clearing a patch of ground for a crop the next year. With him 
came T. J. Holeomb and T. N. Wheatley. who located their claims .just 
over the line, in Fulton county. In :\Iarch, 1835. :\Ir. Horton brought 
his family to the new home in the wilderness and for a whole year was 
the only resident in the township. In 1836 George Neece settled about 
half a mile north of the present town of Macy and his brother William 
came a little later and settled about a mile farther north. The former 


rciiuiiiR-d only a short time, whfii In; sold his clniiii and removed to one 
of the western states. The same year Joiiatlian AVillianis located about 
two and a half miles nortli of the present town of Macy. His l)rotlier, 
Isaac AVilliams, purchased the Neece place and became a resident of the 

The records of the land office show that the fii-st entry of land witliin 
tlie limits of Allen township was made by Chai'lcs W. Catheart in 1S:}5, 
wiicii lie obtained a patent for the north half of the southwest quarter 
of Section 4, in the northeast corner of the township, and soon after- 
ward Alexander B. Morrison entered a tract near by. 

During- the year 1836 there was a large immigration to the townshi]) 
and a number of land entries were recorded, .\niong those who came 
in this year were David and Samuel Hoover. Asa and Nathaniel Leon- 
ard, William Smith, Samuel A. Mann. Alexander Wilson, James and 
Newberry Wheeldon. John (i. Gibson. Elias IJeard, David and Samuel 
Harp, George Harkins, NVilliam Cannon, Jeremiah E. Cary, Eli Pugh, 
Joseph Cary and Jesse Yost. The entries made by these men and a few 
others covered practically every portion of the township. 

In 1837 a number of inhabitants were added to the population. 
Jolm Wilkinson and his four sous— George, Andersou, James and Bald- 
win — came from Jefferson townshii), where they had settled in 1835, 
when the family first came from Ohio. The father and sous entered 
land in tlir immediate vicinity of Macy, George Wilkinson taking up the 
tract upon which the town was afterward laid out. John Reiker entered 
a tract in the eastern part of the township ; David Kinder located on 
Section 6, near the Fulton county line ; Alexander Jameson, Gartin Cal- 
away, W. T. Sipiires and T. J. Ilolcoml) entered Section 7 directly south 
of Kinder; A. M. Campbell and Peter Ilarshman settled on Section !); 
Daniel Jlendenhall, Thomas Clemens and Sullivan Waite on Section 17, 
about a mile east of ]\Iacy. Others who came in this year were Andrew 
Highland, Ebenezer Fenimore, Stephen Brewer, Elias Bills, Charles 
Lowe, Townsend Evans and Daniel Lee. William H. .Mowbray entered 
land, but did not renuiin long in the towuslii[i. 

By 1842 all the government land in the townshii), witli the exception 
of a few small tracts, was taken up, by far tbi- birgcr part of it by actual 
settlers, who were rapidly converting the wilderness into a land of hus- 
Ijandry. Among those who settled in the township between the years 
1837 and 1842 were George Hakius, John MeCree, Nathaniel and George 
Bryant, Sanuiel Carr, Frederick Foor, William Boggs, Henry Stude- 
baker, Riciuird and Joseph Endsley, the Baileys and the Carveys. 

Allen township remained a part of Union until September 6, 1859, 
when the board of county commissioners urdered the erection of a new 


tomaship from the uortheru part of Union, to be named in honor of 
United States Senator William Allen, of Ohio. A few weeks after this 
order was issued, an election for township officers was held at the house 
of Anderson Wilkin.son, who acted as inspector of the election. At that 
time Frederick Huft'nmn was elected justice of the peace and James 
"Wilkinson was elected township trustee. At the next regular election 
\Villiam Fenimore was chosen trustee, but before the expiration of his 
term he resigned to enter the Union army at the beginning of the Civil 
war and Anderson Wilkinson was appointed to serve for the remainder 
of the term 

The first white child liorn in the township was probably Delilah 
Hatch, daughter of William and ]\Iargaret Hatch, who was born in 
December, 1838. John Wilkinson died on December 24, 1838, and his 
death was the first in the township. The first marriage is believed to 
have been that of Elijah Ogle and Catharine Wilkinson, which was sol- 
emnized in 1838, short time before the death of the bride's father. 

The first school in Allen township was taught by Miss Sarah Bryant 
in 1839, in a cabin that had been built for a residence on the farm of 
Matthias Carvey. The next year Miss Betty Bailey taught a terra in 
the same place, and in that year the first schoolhouse was erected upon 
the farm that had been entered by George Neece in 1836. Here the first 
school was taught by George Wilkinson in the fall and winter of 1840. 
The next year two schoolhouses were erected — one in the eastern part 
of the township and the other at the old village of Five Corners, near 
the southwest corner. In 1913 there were five schoolhouses in the town- 
ship, two of which were brick and the other three were frame. The esti- 
mated value of these buildings was $7,200. During the school year of 
1912-13 there were 292 pupils enrolled in the public schools and ten 
teachers were employed, two of whom were in the high school at ]\Iaey. 
The amount paid for teachers' salaries during the year was $4,390. 

One of the earliest industries was the "ashery" started by William 
Squires in 1840. For a number of years this concern supplied much of 
the soda used by the pioneers of Allen township. In 1842 Stewart Bai- 
ley began the manufacture of brick on the Sullivan Waite farm, but the 
first brick house in the township was not built until 1856, when George 
Harkins erected a brick dwelling. In that year Runkle & Woodring 
began the operation of a steam saw mill, with a run of small corn buhrs 
attached. This was a great accommodation to the settlers and proved 
a good investment for the proprietors. After a successful career of 
about three years the boiler of this mill exploded and killed three men 
—a Mr. Hart and his son William and a man named Whipple. 

As early as 1838 Rev. George Pope, a Baptist minister, visited the 


pioiirtT si-ttlfiiifiits ill wiijil is now Allen tiiwn.sliip and liekl .scrvioes 
at tlir (Iwcllino-s of some of the settlors. The following year another 
Baptist preacher by the name of Kendall visited this part of the county. 
.Vhoiit the same time Rev. William Williams. .Methodist minister, began 
lioldiui: meetings at the home of Anderson Wilkinson, where the first 
regular religinus society of that faith was organized in 1840. The 
Plea.sant Ilill Methodist church, about three and a half miles north- 
east of ;\laey. was organized at an early date. A Methodist ehureh was 
established at Five Corners in ISfiO and the Christian ehureh at Maey 
was founded in IStiS. (S(>e Chapter XVTT for a full account of the 
ciinrches of the county.) 

^Iiidi of the land in Allen to\viisiii|> is of such a character that 
artilicial drainage is necessary to bring it to a high state of cultivation. 
Prior lo 1895 some twenty-two miles of ditch had been opened in the 
township at a cost of nearly !|<:W.OOO. Since then several of the early 
ditches have been deeiieiied and a number of new ones constructed. 
Among these are (he .Mill creek, or Taylor ditch, which begins near 
;\racy and runs from there into Perry township and then to Mill creek 
in Fulton county. It is about twelve miles in length and its total cost, 
when completed, will br about $12,000. The Weaver & Davis ditch 
begins near Wagoner and runs into Fulton county; the Weesau ditch 
starts in Perry township, runs through part of Allen and then into 
Fnion ; the Whitmore ditch begins near Birmingham and runs to IMud 
lake, and the Huffman ditch runs west from JFacy. By the opening of 
these drains the land has been greatly improved in character and the 
cro|is of thr Allen townshij) farmers have been correspondingly in- 
creased in value. Tire township has only about seven miles of improved 
iiiirhway, but petitions are pending for the construction of nearly twenty 
miles of gra\-el I'liad in January, 1914. 

JIac_\-. located a little southwest of the center of the township, is the 
priiicipid town. .Xear the southern border is the little village of Bir- 
mingham, and in the northwest corner is the village of Wagoner. These 
three places are stations on the Lake Erie & Western Railroad, which 
traverses the township in a northwesterly direction and affords fairly 
good transportation facilities to the peojile of the township. The old 
village of Five Corners, near the western border, was once a prosper- 
ous trailing center, but it has disajjpeared from the map. 

Butler Township 

Butler township is one of the eastern tier. It is bounded on the 
north by the W^abash river, which sejiarates it I'rom the townships of 
Erie and Peru; on the east bv Wabash I'ountv ; on the south bv Ilarri 



son township, and on the west by the towniship of AVashiugton. The 
Mississinewa river enters the township near the middle of the eastern 
border and flows in a northwesterly direction to the Wabash river, and 
the southern part of the township is drained and watered by the Big 
Pipe creek and its tributaries. The area of the township is a little over 
thirty square miles. 

Before the white man came to iliami county, the territoi-y now com- 
prising Butler township was the favorite hunting grounds of the iMiami 
Indians. When the treaty was made witli representatives of the United 
States government, by which the Indians relinquished their title to the 
lands, several individual reservations were established within the pres- 


ent limits of the township. Francis Godfrey's reservation. No. 3, occu- 
pied the triangle in the forks of the Mississinewa and the Wabash; 
east of this was the reservation granted to the wife of Benjamin ; along 
the eastern border, directly south of the :\Iississinewa, was the reserva- 
tion of Ozahshin(iuah and her sister, daughters of Frances Slocum ; 
south of Godfrey's reservation was that of Osandiah : along the west- 
ern border of the township and just south of the ilississinewa was the 
reservation of Wappapincha, and immediately east of it was Tahkon- 
ong's reservation. All these lands are now in the possession of white 
men and have been brought to a high state of cultivation. 

Some of the most pictures(iue and romantic scenery in Miami county 
is in Butler township. The "Pillared Rocks" and the "Cliffs" of the 


^lississiiii'Wii and the rugged bluffs along tluit stivam are among the 
l)eauty spots of Indiana. In the southern part of the townshi]) tho; 
surfaee is generally level, with undulations here and there. The soil 
in this section is a blaek loam that yields abundant crops. Along the 
river bottoms the soil is fertile and some of the most productive corn- 
fields in the county are to be found in the Wali.-isii and Mississinewa 
valleys in liutler township. 

Martin AVilhelm is credited witii l)eing tlic lirst wliite man to loeat(' 
within the limits of the townshij). In 18^!) he linnight his family from 
Pennsylvania and entered a tract of land a iitlh' soutlieast of the village 
of Peoria. After living here for aboi;t a ycai', he sold his farm to Isaac 
Litzenberger and moved to another about two miles southwest of Pe- 
oria. Soon after the advent of Mr. Wilhelm came Benjamin Barnes, 
James and Thonuis Clayton and Hugh Banks. Barnes settled a short 
distance west of where Peoria now stands, but afterward sold his land 
there to Frederick Wilds and established a now farm north of the Mis- 
.sissinewa. Some years later, Barnes, his brother and two other men 
were drowned in the Wabash river while engaged in rafting logs. 
Thomas Clayton was a son-in-law of Benjamin Barnes and settled on a 
tract of land adjoining that entered by his father-in-law. He remained 
a resident of the township until his death, sonu' years after the Civil 
war. James Clayton located a claim on the noi'th bank of the Missis- 
sinewa, opposite the site of the village of Peoria, but did not live long 
enough to enjoy the full rewards of his labors in his new home, as he 
died about six years after coming to the township. Hugh Banks re- 
mained in Miami county but a short time, when he removed to Wabash 

When the sale of canal lands was held at Peru on October 5, 184U, 
there was a flood of immigrants to the Wabash valley. Many of the 
newcomers were unable to purchase lands to tlieii' liking in the canal 
strip, but they entered government land and became residents, of the 
county. Among those who settled in Butler township in this year were 
John and Isaac Ijit/.enberger, James Beard, IMoses Falk, Sanuu'l Rob- 
ertson and the llahns — Benjamin, John and David. As stated above, 
Isaac Litzenberger bought the farm of Martin Wilhelm, and John lo- 
cateil upon the land where the village of Pcoi'ia was afterward laid out. 
Moses Falk established a trading house at that point and for a few 
years carried on a thriving business with the Indians. 

In the suiinner of 1841 Jose[)h Votaw settled in the northeastern part 
of the township, on land that he had previously purchased. His first 
dwelling there has been described as "a hastily improvised structure, 
resembling in its make up, an Indian wigwam c(]vered with a tent cloth, 


the construction of which re(|nired the united labors of himself and 
wife for about two or three hours." ilr. Votaw was an industrious 
man and soon had a cabin ready for his family. He opened a black- 
smith shop^ — the first in Buller township — soon after his arrival and 
carried on a successful business in that vocation for many years. 

As early as 1836 Jonah Sullivan made a tour through the Miami 
country and selected a tract of land in section 3, near the Wabash 
county line and about a mile and half north of Peoria, as his Indiana 
home. In 1840 he purchased the tract and went back to his native state 
of Ohio, where he married the girl of his choice and the next year brought 
his young wife to the unbroken forest in the valley of the ilississinewa. 
His brother came with him as an assistant and when they arrived at 
their destination a number of Indians gathered to witness the unload- 
ing of the household goods from the wagon. The sight of these natives 
caused the young man considerable anxiety for the safety of the party, 
and as soon as a tent was pitched he hurried away in search of a civilized 
connnunity, leaving Jonah and his wife to tight their battle alone. Mr. 
Sullivan's first work was to dig a well, after which he ei'ected a hewed 
log house, a story and a half high, that for many years was pointed out 
as the best residenee in that portion of the county. 

Othei's who located in the township in 1841 were Isaac Deeter, Wil- 
liam Parks and Rev. Joseph Davis. The last named was a Baptist min- 
ister, who had visited Miami count.v at intervals for several years before 
he became a permanent resident. During the next decade a number 
of new settlers came into the township. Among them were Edmiuid 
Wright, Michael Bradley, Jacob Hefiiey, Adam Fansler, John David- 
son, Jonathan Johnson, William Cipher, Samuel Ramsey, Zachariah 
Wallick, Henry Watts, David and William Miller, Jeptha and James 
Long, Thomas Keyes, Joseph Werhle, John and Solomon Fegley. 
Thomas Timmons, Beu.jamin W^ellick, John King and the Fenimores. 
By 1850 every part of the towaiship was settled by a thrift}' and indus- 
trious class of pioneers. 

Shortly after the treaty of 1826, the government built a mill on the 
prairie east of Chief Godfroy's to grind corn for the .Miamis according 
to the treaty provisions. About 1843 Isaac and John Litzenberger built 
a sawmill near the site of Peoria. A little later a run of corn buhrs was 
added, which had a daily capacity of about fifty bushels. Some two 
years later Matthew Fenimore built a sawmill near the present town of 
Santa Fe. In 1847 he built a grist mill near by and carried on a suc- 
cessful business until the mill was destroyed by fire about 1877. It was 
rebuilt, but its operations were confined to custom work. The Litzen- 
berger mill at Peoria was sold after a few years to Dr. John C. Helm, 


who developed it iuto a large dour niill. Tliis mill was also destroyed 
by fire, but was rebuilt by Joseph Stewart, who bought the site. At 
various ])eriods in the histor\- of the towushi]) sawmills have been estab- 
lished at diU'ereut places and the demands of eonnneree have practically 
consumed the valuable timber that once covered the greater part of the 

It is thought that Frank Litzenberger, a son of Isaac and Sarah 
Litzeuberger, was the first white child born in Butler township. He 
was 1)01-11 in 1841, and the same year the first marriage in the township 
was solemnii^ed, when Nancy White became the wife of James Wilhelm. 
Joel Davis, Joseph Votaw and Job Morris erected the first frame dwell- 
ings in the township and the first orchard was jilauted by Jonah Sulli- 
van, who obtained his trees from the nursery of Matthias iloyer, in 
Richland township. The first religious services were held at the home 
of James Beard by Rev. I\Ir. Beloit, a ^lefhodist minister, in 1841. 

Butler township was established as a separate political division on 
September 1, 1841, when the county commissioners fixed the following- 
boundaries : "Commencing at a point where the north line of Town- 
ship 26 north, Range 5 east, intersects the line between Miami and 
Wabash counties; thence west on the line dividing Townships 26 and 
27 north to the northwest corner of Township 2G, Range 5; thence south 
with the said township line to the southwest corner of said Township 
26. Range 5; thence east with the south line of said township to the 
boundai-y line between Miami and Wabash counties; thence north with 
said boundary line to the place of beginning, being all of Township 26, 
Range 5, whieii lies in ]\Iianii county." 

That i)ortion of the township lying north of the northern line of 
Township 26 was at that time all included in the Indian reservations. 
After these reservations passed into the possession of white men they 
were added to Butler township and the northern boundary was ex- 
tended to the Wabash river. 

The first school in Butler was taught in 1842, in a log house on the 
farm of one of the Longs, but the name of the first teacher has been 
lost. In 184;J a log schoolhouse was built near the Clayton cemetery, 
ill 1lie luirtheastern part of the townshiji, and Jacob Elliott taught the 
first .school here in the fall of that year. The following year Margaret 
^lackey, a native of Ohio and a woman of fine altainments, taught a 
teiin ill this house. In 1111:5 there were ten brick sehoolhouses in the 
township, 2'.i7 pujiils were enrolled in the several districts and ten 
teachers were employed. The amount paid in teachers" salaries during 
the school year of 1912-13 was $3,843.75. This township is introducing 
the "consolidated school system." and at the close of the year 191:? a 


new l)uildiog was Iseiug erected at a eost of sjilo.OOO to aeooiuniudate the 
consolidated districts. With the completion of this huildiny: the school 
property of the township will he worth about $25,000. 

The only railroad in the township is the Chesapeake & Ohio, which 
enters the township from the south, near the village of Santa Fe, and 
runs across the southwest corner. Santa Fe and Peoria are the only 
villagres in the township. 

Cl.\y Township 

Clay is one of the fmir townships that form the southern tier. It 
was organized on ilarch 3, 1846, and was named for Henry Clay, the 
eminent orator and statesman, of Kentucky. Its form is that of a rec- 
tangle, being four miles wide from east to west and six miles in length 
from north to south, and having an area of twenty-four square miles, 
or 15,360 acres. On the north it is liounded by Washington township ; 
on the east by Harrison; on the south In- Howard county, and on the 
west by the township of Deer Creek. Big Pipe creek flows across the 
northeast corner and through the center is Deer creek, which flows in a 
westerly direction across the township. The latter, with its tributaries, 
affords drainage and water for live stock for a large part of the town- 
shij) and also serves as an outlet for numerous ditches and tile drains 
that have added materially to the cultivation of file soil. The surface 
is generally level, except along the streams, and tlie soil is a black loam 
that is unsurpassed for fertility when properly drained. Originally, 
the township was covered with a heavy growth of valuable timber, in- 
eluding black walnut, poplar, maple, ash, oak, beech and some other 
varieties of trees, but the clearing of farms and the manufacture of 
lumber have made such inroads upon the native forest that but little 
timber of value remains. 

This township was one of the last in the county to be settled. In 

1844 Henry Daggy located on Nigger creek, near the east line of the 
township, and he is credited with being the first white man to establish 
a permanent residence within its borders. A little later Otis Fish set- 
tled in the northern part of the township and lived there until about 
1851, when he removed to one of the western states. In the spring of 

1845 John Smith removed from one of the settlements on the Eel river 
and entered a tract of land near McGrawsville. Abel House, Andrew 
Woolpert, Eli Butler, Benjamin Fish (a brother of Otis), William Biggs, 
Caleb Adams and Nathaniel Bunn all located in the township in the 
year 1845. Eli Butler achieved a wide reputation as a hunter and was 
considered one of the best marksmen with the rifle that ever lived in 
J\liami countv. William Biggs held the ofifice of justice of the peace for 

lllSTdKV OK .MIA.MI CorXTV 119 

more tliiiii thirty yeaivs anil was one nf tlir rc|iri'sciitativc and intliicntial 
citizens of Clay ilmini;' tlii' early years of its iiislni'y. 

Some time in the year 18-it) Thomas Murdeii settled near the villasic 
of .MeGrawsville and in after years won a repntation as one of the suc- 
cessful teachers of the tnwiiship. Others who located in Clay in that 
year and the yeai' following- were tlie Ihimi-iekhouses (father and son), 
John Hoover, Cliristian Livingood, flohn Holler, Joiin Wilkinson, Cyrus 
I\Iar(|uiss, Joseph Kessler, Thomas Kellison, Morris Littlejohn. John 
and James Tracy, Harrison Dixon, John Clymer, Riley ^lartin, Heti- 
jamin Wehh, James Finney and Isaac .Mooney. 

Aftci- the land >ale in 1S47 nearly all the land in Clay township was 
taken uj) autl cleareil rapiiUy. Amoiip those who came shortly after that 
sale were Isaac Ilarter. Samuel Livingooti, William Wilkinson, Jacoh 
Beaver, ^Moses Wai-d. Samuel Edwards, JIatthew liowen, David Arm- 
strong. Ijevi Clymer, William Ilieks, ^lorgan Williams. Andrew Kerskii- 
don, John Condo, Jaeoli and Ilezekiah Crutt. Daniel Petty, Cornelius 
Platz. John James, Asel Griffey. Ahncr Pisel and James Shahan. Near 
the west line of the township Richard Wehster eiitered a tract of land 
in 1848. where a little later he opened a tiriek yard and made the first 
lirick in the townsliip. 

Among the early settlers was a man named William .AlcClure, who 
is said to have been a man of tine social qualities hut not very enterpris- 
ing. He li\c(l chietly by hunting and selling whisky surreptitiously 
to his neighbors and the few Indians that remained in that locality. 

The tirst election in Clay township was held at the residence of John 
Wilkinson in .\pril. 1846, only a few weeks after the erection of the 
township by the county conniiissioners. John Lucas served as inspector 
at that election, when John Ilicks. Sinu'on Farlow and John Clymer 
were eleclc.l trustees; William Biggs, .justice of the peace; and Samuel 
Wiley, constable. 

Not long after the organization of the township sawmills were estab- 
lished by .lames Highland and a man named Hill. Highland's mill was 
located near the present village of Waupeeong. About 1877 a large 
steam sawmill was brought into tlie township liy the firm of Macy, 
Darliy i!c Smith. This mill had a capacity of some 15,000 feet of lund)er 
daily ami did a successful business for several years. While the timber 
was plentiful a number of sawmills were operated in different parts of 
the township, but after the valuable trees were all manufactured into 
hunber the liusiness was no longer profitable and nearly all the mills 
were either disnumtled or removed to other localities. Probably the 
first grist mill was that connected with the sawmill of Yoder & Miller, 
near Waupeeong. which, was started about 1S4II. It could grind only 


corn and Satuixlay was ■•grinding day." Tlii.s mill was dusti'oycd by 
fire about 1858 and in 1860 a stock company was organized at Waupe- 
cong for till' purpose of erecting a fiour mill at that point. The mill 
was built a year or two later and was operated with varying success 
for a few years, when the machinery was sold and taken away and the 
I)nilding was subsequently demolished. The manufacture of drain tile 
was "an important industry until the farms were thoroughly drained, 
after which the business fell off to only a fraction of its former pro- 
portions. One of the first tile factories in Clay was that of William 
Rheiii. in the northern part of the township. It was estalilished in 1878 
and a little later James L. Kling started a tile factory in the southern 
portion, where he did a successful business in that line for several 
years. In the early eighties A. J. Phelps began the manufacture of 
cheese in connection with his dairy farm. 

Martha, daughter of Andrew and Naomi Woolpert, who was born 
in 1845. was the first white child born within the present limits of Clay 
township. The first marriage was that of Lewis Reese and Catherine 
Love, in the early fall of 1846. Later in the same year was solemnized 
the marriage of William Love and Jemima Smith. Henry Daggy, who 
was the first actual settler, died in the year 1845 and his death was 
probably the first in the township. The first religious services were held 
at the home of Heiiry Daggy, a little while before his death, and were 
conducted by Eev. J. R. Davis, a Jlethodist minister. An account of 
the various religious denominations in the townshi|i will be found in 
the chapter devoted to church history. 

Pi'om the best sources of information available, it is learned that the 
first school w'as taught in 1843 by Elias Hol)augh. in a log school house 
on what was then known as the Hostetler farm. In 1850 a second school 
house was built on the Lewis Hoover farm, where the first teacher was 
Thomas Murden. In 1913 there were four brick and si.\ frame school 
houses in Clay township, valued at .^^lOjeOO. Dui-iug the school year of 
1912-13 there were 276 pujjils enrolled and ten teachers were employed 
in the public schools, the amount paid in teachers' salaries having been 

The only railroad in the township is a line of the Pennsylvania 
system — usually called the Pan Handle — which crosses the northern 
part in a northwesterly direction. McGrawsville, on the line between 
Clay and Harrison townships, and Loree, about three miles west of 
^McGrawsville, are stations on this road. The principal village in Clay 
is Waupecong, which is situated in the southern part, just a mile north 
of the Howard county line. 


Deer Creek Towxsiiii' 

Tliis lowiisliip Occupies the southwest coriipr of the county and has 
an ai-ea of twenty-four square miles, being four miles in extent from 
east to west and six miles from north to south. It is bounded on the 
noi-th by Pipe Creek township; on the east by Clay; on the south by 
Howard county, and on the west by the county of Cass. It was estab- 
lislied, witii its present boundaries and iliinensions, by order of tln! 
county coniiiiissionprs on September 1, 18-17, and was named after the 
stream tlint Hows a westerly course through the center of the township. 
Deer creek and South Deer creek, with tlieii- tributaries, afford a fairly 
good water supjily and drainage system for tlic township, though tlie 
natural drainage has been supplemented by the construction of more 
than twenty miles of ditches and tile drains. 

Tile soil in this iiait of the county is a black loam, of great depth and 
exceedingly fertile, and in no part of the county are larger crops of 
corn, wheat, oats and hay raised than in Deer Creek township. When 
the first white men came to this region they found a heavy growth of 
black wahiiit, hickory, oak, poplar, ash, iiia|)lc and other varieties of 
valuable tiiidiei'. ilucli of this was wantonly destroyed by the pioneers 
in opeiung their farms to cultivation, and it is no exaggeration to state 
that, ill iiuin.\- instances, if this timber could lie replaced at the present 
time it would be worth more than the land upon which it grew. 

Deer Creek township la.v in the heart of the "Hig Reserve" of the 
Miami Indians and was not surveyed and opened to settlement as early 
as some other portions of the county. The land was not put upon the 
market until 1S47, though a few adventurous white men had made set- 
tlements within the jiresent limits of the township prior to that time. 
The earliest settlers of whom there is any aythentie record were David 
Hoffman. Kichartl .Miller and Thomas Pearson, who came about the 
year 1S44. Hoffman settled, near the northeast corner of the townshi]); 
Jliller about a mile west of the [iresent village of Miami, and Pearson 
about a iiiile. west of ililler. Dui'iiig the year 1845 several persons 
joiiie<l the three original jiioneers. Among llicni were James McCrary, 
James Davis, David Armstrong, Jesse Julian, Jo.seph McConnell, D. C. 
Jenkins, James Adanison, Richard Webster, Austin Ilerrell and Wil- 
liam .McConnell. I)a\id Armstrong ami Richard Webster afterward 
removed to ('lay lowiisliii). and James Mc('i-.-iry remained but a short 

In 1841) Oliver Sandifur, Isaac Herrell, Sylvester Tumlin, J. D. Lari- 
mer, Frazee and George Swinford, John Hicks. William Mahon, Allen 
Husby, William Swinford and a few others established homes in differ- 
ent |iarts of the township. 


Immediately after the lands were opened to settlement there was a 
tide of immigration to the southern part of Miami eounty and during 
the years of 1847 and 1848 about one hundred patents were granted 
by the government to tracts in Deer Creek townshiji. Among those 
who entered lantls in those two years were: John H. and B. F. Brown, 
Joseph A. Burr, Isaac Burroughs, John Beesly, Emery and William 
Daggett. John and Leonard Dixon, James Avelin, Oliver and James 
Jenness, Adolphus Runnells, James Adams, Lewis N. Snodderly, Wil- 
liam ^larrow, Christopher Carter, Samuel and Thomas ilartindale, John 
Hinehman, James S. Davenport. Nathan Piles, Zebedee Wright, Joseph 
Graves, John and Sanuu4 Truax, George Pontius, Thomas A. Long, 
Thomas Woodrick, Jesse Gettiuger, George Spray, Simeon Farlow, 
Arthur Compton, James Lewis, Archibald Chittick, Daniel Russell, 
James Fettis. John Keever, and most of those who had selected lands 
before they were opened for entry. 

The first mill in the townshiji was a small "corn cracker," which was 
built by Adolphus Runnells on Deer creek in the western part. Here 
the first election for township officers was lield a few weeks after the 
townshiji was erected by the county commissioners. D. C. Jenkins was 
chosen .iustice of the peace; Austin Ilerrell, Lewis Snodderly and Thomas 
Pearson, trustees; W. II. Miller, clerk; Daniel Ellis, treasurer. 

Runnells' mill was of the most primitive type. It was a log structure, 
with a single run of " nigger-head "" buhrs, and the meal it made was 
coarse, but for all its imperfections it was of great utility to the early 
settlers. It was built aliout 1846 and continued to be the principal mill 
in the township for aliout five year.s. The water of Deer creek supplied 
the motive power. About 185(1 John Hicks built a mill on Deer creek a 
short distance southeast of where the village of Miami now stands, and 
from the numerous stories told of this mill it nmst have l)eeu a curiosity. 
One of these stories is to the effect that a customer brought half a bushel 
of corn to the mill in the morning and toward nightfall insisted that Mr. 
Hicks take out some more toll, as he wanted to get home before it got 
dark. Another is that one day, while the mill was crushing the grains 
of corn at the rate of thirty or forty a minute, the buhrs suddenly 
•stoppetl running. Investigation showed that an old sow had found a 
resting-place in the mill race, effectually shutting off the supply of water. 
Probably the first saw-null in the township was the one erected by Oliver 
and Nelson Sandifur about 1850. It was what was known as a "sash 
saw," slow in its operations, but for several years it supplied the settlers 
with lumber. The first steam saw-mill was established at Miami, by 
Alexaniler Blake, in 1852. Austin Herrell and Lewis :\Iiller were like- 
wise prominently identified with this line of business, and "Eb." Hum- 


rickliousf liiiilt a largi' sti-aiii Hour mill at .Miami aliiiiil 1S71. lie aftcr- 
wai-d sold it to William Tubhs. who ri'iiinvid it to Walton, Cass county. 

.John II. Huiiklc, a foriiicr county suiicriiitciulciit of the .Miami county 
schools, is authoi'ity for the statement that the lii-st school iu Deer Creek 
township was taujiiit in 1845, by a man named Henry Garrett, and that 
the tirst .school house was built the ne.xt year on the farm of Austin Iler- 
rell. where John Trua.x taught the (irst school, in l!Jl;j the townshi|) 
had eight l)rick school houses, valued at $S.()(iii, eni'olled 194 pupils in 
the i)ublic schools, emjilos'ed ten teachers, who received in salaries the 
sum of $4,277. 

The Lake Erie & Western Kailroad runs mii'th and south through the 
cii.stern part of the township. Parallel to it is a lint^ of the Iiuliana 
Union Traction system of electric railways, which has its northern ter- 
minus at Pei-u. These two roads furnish excellent transportation 
facilities to the greater part of the township. Both roads pass through 
the villages of Bennett's Switch and .Miami, which are the only post- 
otKices in the township. 

As early as 1846 a few Jlethodists gathered at the home of Lewis 
Snodderly anil lield the tirst religious services in the township. A little 
later a society of that faith was organized. Since then the Baptists, 
Chi'istians and some other denominations have organized and built 
houses of worship. 

In the southern part of what is now Deer Creek townsliip was the 
Indi;in village of the chief Shap-pan-do-ce-ah. In 1846 this village con- 
sisted of a few log huts and a number of bark wigwauis. The next year 
the inhabitants removed to Kansas with the other members of the tribe 
of iliamis. .\nu)ng them was a white woman about fifty years of age, 
who, like Frances Siocum, had been captured in childhood and brought 
up as an" Inilian. She accompanied her Miami husband to Kansas in 

Erie Township 

I'h'ic township is the smallest in Miami eounty.' It is situated on I In- 
eastern border, directly north of the Wabash river, and has an area of 
about nineteen S(iuare nules. On the north it is lioundi'd by Richland 
township; on the east by Wabash county; on the south by the Wabash 
river, which separates it from Butler township, and on the west by the 
township of Peru. The surface is diversified, being somewhat rolling iu 
the eastern and southern portions and level in the northern part. Along 
the Wabash I'iver the soil is of more than ordinary fertility and is under 
a high stale of cultivation. In the northern part, while the soil is less 


fertile than the i-iver hottoiiis. good crops are raised, and throughout the 
township agriculture is carried on with excellent results. Like the 
greater part of the county, the surface of Erie township was originally 
covered with timher. the principal varieties nf which were hlack walnut, 
pojilar, ash, maple, elm and sycamore. 

In the fall of 1827 Sanuid McClure establislu-d a trading ]ios1 in the 
southwestern i>art of tlie townslii]). where he carried on a successful 
traffic with the Indians for scvci'nl years, when he removed to Grant 
county. No etforts were made by him to establish permanent improve- 
ments or cultivate the soil, and the honor of being the first actual settler 
belongs to Henry King, who settled near the western boundary in 1835. 
Shortly after he had located his claim Joseph Fox settled near the old 
Wabash & Erie canal, and before the close of that year Joseph and John 
Hale, James Burton, Uaniel Potter. L. B. liartlett anil Pierre La \'on- 
ture all selected land and settlrd within the present limits nf the towii- 

During the years 1836 and 1837 a few settlers located in this part of 
the county. Among them were James F'oruash and his son William. 
Slath Cole and Horatio French, It is related of William Fornash that 
he was fond of Indian society, spent a goodly portion of his time with 
his red friends and, probably in a spirit of fun, was fre(iuently seen upon 
the streets of Peru decked out in Indian costume. 

The settlement of Erie was rather slow until after the laud sale at 
Peru in the fall of 1840, though the township was erected by the county 
commi.ssioners on August 27, 1839, when "that portion of the territory 
of I'eru township lying east of the recently established Range line and 
entirely east to the Wabash county line," was taken to form the new 
township. The name conferred upon the new political organization at 
that time was "Black Hawk Township," and it went by that \iame until 
in September, 1847, when the name was changed to Erie, after the 
Wabash & Erie canal. Among the settlers who came into this neighbor- 
hood a .short time before the organization of the township wei-e two 
brothers — Sylvester and Elam Henton. The former was known as 
"Black Hawk" Henton, and there is a tradition that this was the origin 
of the original name. 

Among those who settled in the township in 1839 and shortly after 
the land sale of 1840 were : John and James Bailey, Alfred and Morris 
Baker, Anson Jewett, Jeremiah Taylor, Lewis King and John Misener. 
A year or so later came John and James Bailey, Silas Chalmers, Sala- 
thiel Cole, Abner and William Beeson, Jeremiah Kaler, Solomon Wybal, 
John and William Nicholson, Samuel Philabaum and a few others. By 
the time the name of the township was i-liaiiged, tlie territory was fairly 


well populated uirI most of tiif i»uiilii- laiid iuid iiccii ciitci-cd ii\- ac-liial 

At tile time the first settlements were made a lai'ire part of the town- 
ship alonj; the Wabash river was iiieliided in the individual Indian reser- 
vations. In the southwest corner w;is tiie reservation of Francis Godfrey, 
No. 15, and east of this were two reservalions of Riehardville, extending 
up the river to within one mile of the Wahasli eminly line. These lands 
have long since passed inUi the hands of the while men and are now some 
of the best improved farms in ;\Iiami county. 

The tirst hlaeksmith shop in the township was established by Thomas 
Kennedy in the .southern part, on the line of the old canal, where he 
carried on his vocation for a number of years. The first saw-mill was 
built near the northern boundary by a man named Williams. Some 
years later the mill was purchased by a .Mr. Cowger and the boiler was 
taken to Peru. The first marriage was probably that of John Passon 
to Priscilla Foruash in 1838. The first white child born within the 
limits of the township is believed to have been John, a son of John and 
Ilannah Hale, who was born in 1837, and the first death was perhaps 
that of Joseph Hale, in 1838. 

The first election was held a few weeks after the township was erected, 
at the house of Anson Jewett, when Jeremiah Taylor was elected justice 
of the peace and Henry King, Daniel Henderson and Samuel Phila- 
baum, township trustees. 

Early in the '40s Rev. John Davis, a Baptist minister, visited Erie 
township and held services at the house of Salathiel Cole, which was the 
first religious meeting in the township. Members of this faith held serv- 
ices for several years at what was known as the California school house. 
The iMethodists, Christians and United lii'etluen also held services at an 
early date. An account of these early organizations will be found in 
the chapter on Church Ilistoiy. 

Erie township is the only one in the county without a village or a 
postoffice. -Mail is supplied to the inhabitants through the rural free 
delivery system from Peru. The Wabash Railroad and the electric line 
of the Foi't Wayne & Northern Indiana Traction Company cross the 
southern portion of the township, and on the latter there are local 
stations for the aceonuiiodation of Erie township people. 

Owing to the sparse population during the years innuediately follow- 
ing the first settlement, no public school was taught in Erie township 
until the year 1844. Then two school houses were erected — one on the 
farm of Sanniel Philabaum and the other on the farm belonging to a 
man named Peer. Robert Taylor, Phoebe Cox and John Corwiu were 


among: tlie first teachers. In 1913 there were four good brick school 
houses in tlie township and four teacliers were employed in the schools. 
The estimated value of the scliool l)uildings was .$3,600, there were 84 
pupils enrolled during the school year of 1012-13. and the amount paid 
in sahiries to the teachers was !i;l,645. 

Harrison Township 

This township is one of tlie southern tier and is uniform in size with 
Clay, Deer Creek and Jackson, being four miles in width from east to 
west and six m-iles in length from north to south. It is bounded on the 
north by Butler township; on the east by Jackson; on the south by 
Howard county; and on the west by Clay township. The general sur- 
face is level and the soil is exceedingly fertile, though artificial drainage 
is necessary in some parts of the township before the best results can be 
obtained in agriculture. Consequently nearly twenty miles of ditch and 
tile drain have been con.structed in the township. Across the northern 
part Hows Big Pipe creek in a westerly direction, and Deer creek crosses 
■the southwest corner. These two streams, with their smaller tributaries, 
furnisli a good supjily of water for live stock and serve as an outlet for 
the drains and ditches. A heavy forest of black walnut, oak. hickory, 
maple and other species of native trees once covered the land now included 
in Harrison township. Before the sound of the woodman's ax was heard, 
this forest abounded in game and was a favorite hunting ground of the 
Miami Indians. But the ax, the torch and the saw-mill have done their 
deadly work. Large quantities of lumber have been shipped out of the 
township and many valuable trees were felled and burned in early days 
to make way for the cultivated fields. Instances are recorded where the 
walnut timber on a single acre in Harrison has brought as much as .$400. 

In 1844 William Smith and Imri Murden came into the townshij) 
and "s(iuatted" upon the unsurveyed lands that were still in the 
hands of the Indians, although they had been ceded to the United 
States. Mr. Murden had formerly settled near Mexico, on the Eel river, 
and after a residence of several years in Harrison township removed 
again to the northern part of the county. Upon coming to the township 
in 1844 he located his claim in the southwest corner, Mr. Smith liaving 
previously selected land farther north. Late in summer or early in the 
fall of 1844 Joshua Dixon settled near the Clay township line, where he 
opened the first blacksmith shop in Harrison township. His customers 
were few at first, but as the country settled up his business increased and 
for about twenty years he continued to ply his trade at that point. 
Joshua Tharp also came in 1844 and settled in the northern part. He 
was one of the most successful of the pioneer hunters and many a deer 


iVIl iit the ci-ack of liis ritlc .lacdli Stitt caiiic almut tlic saiiii' tiiiU' as 
Tharp ami selected a elaim (ni I'ipe creek, near tlie iKirtheast corner of 
the to\vnshi|), and made some substantial iiiipioveiiients. William liiir- 
nett, Kieliai'd Crane, Samuel Spui'geon, .lames and Simeon Dryer. Eli 
Stitt, Jesse Lee and John Wilson settled in the to\vnshi|) late in 1844 
or dnrins the year 1845 and most of them securi'd title to their lands 
soon after they were ojx'ned for entry. 

In 1846 the population was increased by the ai-rival of Tjevi Willis. 
Z. C. Smith, Tillman Hall. Stephen Reeves, Solomon Ilauck, Jacob 
Miller, (Jeorge C. Smith, William Love, Emsley Overman, George Coojier 
and William Wineburn. 

On September 8, 1846, Harrison township was set ai)art as an inde- 
pendent political division and was named for (leneral William Henry 
Harrison, the hero of Tippecanoe, who was elected president of the 
T'nited States in 1840 and died a short time after his inatiguration. The 
first election was held at the house of William Smith a little later, when 
Solomon Hanck was elected justice of the ])eai-e; David Roe and John 
IMoorman, trustees, and- Abel Hauck, constable. 

Sarah A., daughter of Imri and Rebecca ^Mnrden. boi'n in 1846, is 
believed to have been the first white chihl born in the township. In the 
spring of 1847 William Love married a daughter of William Smith and 
later in the same year Henry Daggy married Kli/,;dieth Hurnett. These 
were the first marriages in Harrison. The first death was probabl.v that 
of a colored woman, wife of a negro known as "IJlack Bill," in 1847. 
Mrs. William Wineburn died in the same year and as there were no 
roads j'et opened through the woods, her coftin was cari'ied from Santa 
Fe, four miles distant. The first religious services were held at the 
house of Charles Co.\ in 1848 by a ^lethodist minister named Richardson. 
In the same year John Leach, another pioneer pi-eacher, conducted serv- 
ices at the cabins of John Wilson and James Graham. 

About 1846 or 1847 Matthew Fenimore built ;i saw-null on Section 
f), in the northern jjart of the townshiji, on Pipe cn'ek. Subsequently 
Mr. Fenimore erected a grist mill near by, which continued in operation 
for many years. The second saw-mill was built at the old village of 
Snow Hill, on Section ;3, by Jacob Miller. Shortly afterward he sold 
out to Niccum brothers and built another mill at North Grove. A man 
named Thomas started a tannery in the eastern part of the township at 
an early date and carried on a successful business for some years. He 
then .sold out and his successors could not make it pay. so the tanyard 
fell into disuse. 

Accounts differ as to where and by whom the first school was taught 
in Harrison township. Prof. John II. Rnnkle, who was county supcrin- 


teiuleiit of schools in tlic 'ItOs. says: ""The first school in Harrison 
township was a sul)SC'ription school, taught by a man by the name of 
Jesse Lee, in 1847, in a small cabin that stood on his own farm. This 
cabin had for several years been used for a dwelling, but it was at this 
time fitted up for school purposes, so that it was the same characteristic 
log school house as was provided for the schools of Miami county in the 
good old primitive days."' 

Stephens' History of ^liami County (page 344) says: "The first 
school was taught in an old cabin which AVilliam Smith hastily put up 
on his arrival. Iniri Murden was the first teacher of the township." 

Whichever account is correct, it is certain that the people who settled 
Harrison township believed in education and the precedent they estab- 
lished has lieen followed by those who came after them. In 1913 there 
were four lirick school buildings in the township, valued at $20,000. 
Formerly there were seven school districts, but by consolidation three of 
them have been discontinued. During the school year of 1912-13 six 
teachers were employed, receiving in salaries the sum of $2,491. 

Two lines of railroad run through Harrison township. The Pan 
Handle enters from the east, about two miles north of the southeast cor- 
ner, and runs aci'oss the township in a nortlnvesterly direction through 
the villages of North Grove and ilcGrawsville. North of this road, and 
following the same general direction, is the Chesapeake & Ohio. These 
two roads furnish ample shipping facilities to all parts of the township. 
North Grove and McGrawsville are the only postoffices. Snow Hill, in 
the northeast corner, and Gary, not far from the southeast corner, were 
once thriving villages, but with the building of the railroads their trade 
was diverted to other points and they have ceased to exist. (See the 
chapter on Towns and Villages.) 

Jackson Township 

The main body of Miami county is a rectangle, twelve miles wide 
from east to west and thirty miles long from north to south. At the 
southeast corner of this rectangle, but outside of it, lies Jackson town- 
ship. It is four miles in width from east to west and six miles long from 
north to south, containing an area of twenty-four square miles, or 
15,360 acres. On the north it is bounded by Wabash county: on the 
east by Grant county ; on the south by the county of Howard, and on the 
west by Harrison township. ^Miami county. Along the streams the sur- 
face is somewhat rolling, but back from the water courses it is generally 
level. The soil is a dark loam, fertile and well adapted to cultivation. 
In some parts the soil has to he drained in order to secure the best results, 
hence there are nearly thirty miles of ditch and tile drain in the town 


ship. In-l'mv the eoiiiiiii; of the white man the entire surl'aee was eov- 
ered witli a forest growth of valuable timber, in whieli game abouiuled 
and this section was a favorite hunting ground of the red man. Very 
little of the native timber remains, it having been cleared off to make 
way for the fanner or manufactured into lumber. 

Like all that part of Miami county lying south of the Wabash river, 
tiiis township was once a part of the Miami Indian "Big Reserve," 
hence it was not settled until after the region nortli of the Wabash was 
fairl\- well pojjulated. It is known that hunters and trappers visited this 
part of the county before the land was disposed of by the Indians, but 
no attempt was made to form a permanent settlement until about 1842. 
Then Silas Braffet and Thomas Creviston built their cabins near the 
(J rant county line, the latter locating in what is now Jackson township, 
while the other cabin stood just across the line in Grant county. Later 
in the same year came John Powell, Thomas Addington and Thomas 
.Mason. Powell settled in tile eastern part of the township; Addington 
l>uilt his rahiu where the town of Converse now stands; and Mason 
located in the northeast corner, near the Wabash count.v line. 

In Jaiuiary, 1848, Oliver H. P. J\Iaey, an early settler of Grant county, 
removed across the line and located a tract of land which now lies 
within the limits of the town of Converse. John Gates settled about 
tliree miles north of Macy, and before the close of that year a few other 
liard.N pioneers had located claims in Jackson township. During the 
next three years iiuite a number of settlers came into this part of Miami 
county. Among them were James ilcKinley, John Long, James Foul- 
son, William Bowman, Samuel Long, James Que, James Calhoun, David 
Daniels, Samuel Butler, Sanniel and David l)ra])er, Heni-y Addington, 
William and Kli Overman, George Badger, Jonathan Pearson, Nathan 
Arnold, Solomon Wright, and perhaps a dozen others. Rev. Abraham 
See, a Methodist clergyman, settled about a mile northeast of Converse 
and was probabl.v the first minister of the Gospel to establish a home in 
this township. 

Most of the pioneers located their claims in the southern portion, 
neai- the present towns of Amboy and Converse, or along the Big Pipe 
creek, which flows in a northwesterly direction farther north. Samuel 
Butler, who settled near the northwest corner, afterward became a 
believer in the doctrines of the Mormon church and went to Utah. 

In the summer of 1846 a petition was circulated by Oliver H. P. 
Macy among the settlers, a.sking the county eommis,sioners to organize a 
new township, which should be known by the name of "Liberty. " Nearly 
every resident within the territory to be included in the new township 
signed the petition, two men objecting because they wanted "to keep 

130 HISTORY OF :\iia:\ii county 

law aud order out of the couiitry as long as passible." ilr. Maey then 
walked to Peru and presented the petition to the county commissioners 
and on September 2, 1846, the board issued an order for the erection of 
the township, with its present boundaries and dimensions, but the name 
was changed from Liberty to Jackson, in honor of Andrew Jackson, who 
commanded the United States forces at the battle of New Orleans and 
was afterward elected president of the United States. 

The first election was held soon after the township was established, 
at the house of James Poulson, Rev. Abraham See acting as inspector. 
David Daniels was elected justice of the peace and Abraham See, con- 
stable. The records of that election have disappeared, but it is thought 
that James McKinley and Gabriel Hayes were two of the first board of 
towaiship trustees. 

Susannah, daughter of James C. aud Delilah Poulson, was I)orn in 
May, 1844, and is believed to have been the first white child born in 
Jackson township. The first death was that of an infant child of Thomas 
and Mary Addington, which occurred soon after the family settled in 
Miami county, and this little child was the first t<> be buried in 
the cemetery at Converse. Among the early marriages were Charles 
Marine to Maria Ballinger; Oscar Addington to .Alary A. North; and 
David Draper to Elizabeth Ballinger. In the case of the last named 
couple, the bride lived in Grant county and ilr. Draper made the mis- 
take of securing his license from the clerk of Miami county. When he 
arrived at the house of his intended father-in-law, where the wedding 
guests were already assembled, the minister who had been engaged to 
perform the ceremony informed him that a marriage could not be legally 
solemnized in Grant county under a license obtained at Peru. Conster- 
nation reigned. It was several miles to Marion and it appeared that the 
wedding would have to be postponed. In this emergency some one pro- 
posed that, as it was but a short distance to the county line, the entire 
company should walk over into iliami county, where the license could 
be used. The suggestion was accepted and the procession, headed by the 
minister, started for the boundaiy. When satisfied they were safely 
within the precincts of Sliami county the party halted, the young couple 
joined hands, and there in the primeval forest Elizabeth Ballinger 
became Mrs. David Draper. 

As early as 1845 a few Methodists gathered at the cabin of John 
Powell, where Rev. Abraham See conducted the first religious services 
ever held in Jackson township. A little later services were held by the 
United Brethren at the home of James C. Poulson, where Rev. George 
C. Smith addressed the little congregation. Both these denominations 
afterward organized churches in the township, and still later the 


Friends, Christians and some other denominations founded congrega- 
tions, accounts of which will be found in the chapter on Church History. 

Immediately after tlie township was organized in 1846, the people 
began to think of establishing some sort of a school system. To this 
end O. II. P. Macy, Samuel Draper and Thomas ]\Iason were elected 
school directors. By their direction the tirst school house was built in 
1848 on the farm of Benjamin Davis. David Stanfield, Thomas 
and Mason Sharp were some of the pioneer teachers. In 1913 the six 
brick school houses in the township were estimated to bo worth .HilOjOOO ; 
the school building in the town of Amboy was valued at .^27,500, and the 
one at Converse was valued at $25,000, making a total of $62,500 as the 
value of all the school property in the township. Four teachers were 
employed in the township schools and received in salaries $1,635. The 
seven teachers at Amboy, three of whom were employed in the com- 
missioned high school, received $4,100 during the school year of 1912-13, 
and the ten teachers at Converse, of whom four were in the commissioned 
high school, received $5,021.60. 

The P;in Handle and Chesapeake & Ohio railroads both enter the 
township near the southeast corner and run in a northwesterly direction 
across its entire width. Amboy and Converse, both incorporated towns, 
are the only postoffiees in the township. Rural routes from them supply 
the population with daily mail. 



Jefferson Township One of the First to be Settled — Perry — Peru — 
Pipe Creek — An Indian Village — Richland — Union — Washing- 
ton — Location, Boundaries and Physical Characteristics of 
Each — Pioneer Settlers — Early Births, ^Marriages and Deaths — 
Primitive Industries — First Religious Meetings — Pioneer Schools 
and Teachers — Towns and Villages — Transportation — Miscella- 
neous Events — The Pioneer's Place in History. 

Jefferson Township 

Jefferson township was established by the county commissioners at 
their first session, in June, 1834. and was named in honor of Thomas 
Jefferson, who was president of the United States from 1801 to 1809. As 
originally created it embraced all the northern portion of the county, but 
it has been materially reduced in size by the formation of other townships. 
It now has an area of about thirty-three square miles, or 21,120 acres. It 
is situated a little northwest of the center of the county and is bounded 
on the north by the townships of Union and Richland ; on the east by Rich- 
land and Peru; on the south by Peru, and on the west liy Cass county. A 
portion of the surface is level and the remainder is undulating, so that 
most of the township is capable of being cultivated, and the soil is 
well adapted to agricultural purposes. The Eel river and its tributaries 
drain and water the township and the Eel river valley is one of the best 
improved districts in central Indiana. A dense forest originally covered 
the entire area of the township, Init the husbandman's ax and the saw- 
mill have practically annihilated the native growth of valuable timber. 

This township was one of the first in the county to be settled by white 
men. On December 13, 1830, Solomon Wilkinson entered a tract of land 
where the town of Mexico now stands, built a cabin and removed his familv 
to the new home in the wilderness the following spring. Mr. Wilkinson 
had seven sons — Ratliff, John, Jacob, Jesse, William, Simeon and Balaam 
— all of whom subsequently entered land near their father's homestead 
and were among the most active of the pioneers in the development of this 



seetiou of the county. Ratlitl' Wilkinson was one of the first petit .jurors 
ever drawn in Miami county, and other members of the family have held 
public office or positions of trust and responsibility at various periods of 
the county's history. 

David Vinnedge entered eighty acres in the southeast quarter of sec- 
tion 31, immediately noi-th of the present town of Mexico, in 1830, but 
did not become a resident of the township until some time afterward. 

Two brothers, Wood and Abi-aham Beard, entered land and settled 
in the township in 1S31, and about the same time William Smith located 
near ilexico. John and Thomas Smith also came to the township in this 
year, and in the year following the population was increased by the arrival 
of "William Connei- and Alexander Jameson, with their families. Others 
who settled in this locality before the organization of iliami county were 
William Bain. Isaac Hicks, Eli Csok and Samuel Newman. Thomas 
.Mc(;iiiiiis entered a jiart of section 28 in 1833, hut it is not certain tiiat 
he took up his residence in the township at that time. 

In 1834 Thomas Harmon located about a mile west of Mexico, where 
he established the first blacksmith shoj) in the township. About the same 
time the first mill was built by Hurrell Daniels, who located on the north 
bank of the Eel river, on what was afterward known as the Deuison farm. 
The second mill in the township was doubtless the one erected by Hamil- 
ton Dutf, who came in 1834 and settled on the Eel river, about a mile and 
a quarter above Mexico. His mill, which was operated by water power, 
was built soon after he came to the county. Charles ^lurden came fi-om 
Maryland in this year and entered a farm about two and a half miles 
northeast of Mexico. He arrived at his new home in September and for 
about two months bis family lived in a tent, until the primitive log cabin 
could be erected. Here he reared a family of five sons and six daughters. 
His sons — Matthew, Imri, Timothy, Henry and Thomas — afterward were 
recognized as among the most enterprising and jiublic-spirited citizens 
of tile towHshi]). Some time before the arrival of Mr. Alurden and his 
family, William Eidson settled on section 35, not far from the Cass county 
line, where he entered a tract of land and estalilisbed his home in the 
wilderness. Another pioneer of 1834 was Peter Fisher, whose family 
afterward became prominent in local affairs. He entered a tract of land 
in section 30, a little northwest of the center of the township, and after 
securing the title to his land went back to Ohio for his family. Early in 
1835 he became a permanent resident of the township, where his death 
occurred more than forty years later. Lsaac, Joseph, Aaron, Noah, Jacob 
and George Fisher, the .sons of Peter, were among the active and influen- 
tial citizens of Jefferson township for many years. Jacob was the owner 
of the old homestead in section 30. 


Other early settlei's in Jefferson township were the Clymers — Joseph, 
John and Levi — who located in the central part : William Leach, two 
miles northeast of ;\Iesico ; Asa and Reed Leonard, who located near the 
Richland township line; Xathanial Leonard, two miles northwest of 
Mexico : Daniel AUiaugh, who entered section 28 and ohtained a patent 
for it in 1834. The above pioneers came during- the years 1834 and 
1835. Tiiey were soon followed hv Jacob Brown, an elder of the German 
Baptist church, John Brower, Abi-ahani Louman, Joseph Holinan, Henry 
Brower, Jeremiah Manson, Isaac Newman. Thomas and David Walling, 
William Gallagher. Isaac and Jesse Bond. Hiram Butler, Charles 
Spencer, Daniel Cox. William Collett, Jacob Hoover, Jesse S. W^illiams, 
James B. Savers, Samuel Brown, Stephen Marsh, William Burnett. 
Sanuiel Edwards, ilichael Fonts, Jacob Kress, Aliraham Branaman, 
John M. Keen, Samuel Anderson afid a number of others. 

The reader may wonder why the early settlers of this township came 
to select homes so far away from the AVabash river, which was the main 
channel of travel by the early traders. But it must be remembei-ed that 
the men who con<|uered the wilderness liad to depend upon other things 
besides the associations to be found at the trading jiosts. They were 
men who used the ride as well as the ax and plow in the beginning of 
the development of the country and the forests along the Eel river were 
well supplied with game of various kinds. The soil in this part of the 
county is fertile and did not require the drainage that settlers in other 
parts have foiind to be necessary. Springs were to be found in several 
localities in what is now Jefferson township, which made it unnecessary 
to dig wells in order to obtain a supply of pure water for domestic pur- 
poses. All these conditions contributed to bring about the early settle- 
ment of the township. 

The fii-st death in the township was that of Solomon Wilkinson, who 
entered the first piece of land in the township. He died in 1832 and his 
body was the first to be interred in the cemetery at Mexico. Among the 
early marriages were those of Jesse Wilkinson to Sallie Jameson and 
William Wilkinson to Mary Jameson, which were solemnized at the 
same time and place in 1835. One of the first births was that of a child 
of Jesse and Sallie Wilkinson, but the date cannot be learned. 

One of the first needs of the early settlers was some method of edu- 
cating their children. According to (Jraham, the first school in the 
township was taught by William Snewalt in the winter of 1834-35, in 
a small log house that had been built for a residence on the Wynkoop 
farm. The first regular school house was built on Charles Murden's 
place, probably in 1835. and the first school there was taught l)y Joseph 
Holman. With the growth of population and the development of the 


(.•ouutry the si-liools ol' the township wiTe iurreaseil in iiuiiiln-r miicI im- 
proved in character. In 1913 there were eijjht school Iniildings in Jeffer- 
son, valued at sjilT.OOO. and duriiii;- the school year of 1912-13 fourteen 
teachers were employed, receiving in salaries the sum of $6,244, the 
highest amount paid by any township in the county. Four of the school 
houses are brick and the other four arc fi'ame structures, but all arc of 
modern design and well adapted to tiie iiurjiose for wliich they were 

As early as 1833 Rev. John A. Brouse, a Methodist missionary, held 
religious sci'vices at the cabin of William Snntli. A little later a class 
was formed and the first house of worship in the lownship was built by 
this little congregation in 1840. The Christian and (iernian Baptist c'on- 
gi-egations were organized in 1838. The Baptist church at Mexico was 
founded in 1861, and there are congregations of different denominations 
at Denver, an account of which will be found in the chaptci- on clinrch 

Jeft'erson townshiji is well sujiplicd with Iransportation facilities. A 
line of the Vandalia railway sy.stem runs across the township from north- 
east to southwest, following closely the Eel river and pa.«sing throiigh 
^lexico and Denver, and the Lake Ei-ie & Western runs noi'th and south 
along the eastern border, crossing the Vandalia at Denver. IMexico and 
Denver are both thriving towns. Houtli of Denver is a small station on 
the Laki' Erie & Western Railroad, from which some shipping is done. 

As stated in the beginning of this chapter, Jeffer.son township was 
established in June, 1834, and endiraced all the northern part of the 
county. Perry townshi]) was formed in Kebiuary, 1837, and on the 7th 
of Xovendier of that year the townships of Richland and Union were 
erected, at which timi' Jefferson was reorganized with its present bound- 
ai'ies and area. 

Perry Township 

This township occupies the northeast corner of the coimty and is the 
largest civil township in the county. Its extent is seven miles from east 
to west and six miles from north to south, giving it a total area of forty- 
two S(|uare miles, or 26,880 acres. It is bounded on the north by Fulton 
county; on the east by the county of Wabash; on the south by Richlan<l 
township, and on the west by the townships of Allen and Union. The 
general surface is rolling, with some hills along the few streams that 
traverse the townshi]). Geologists see in the surface indications evi- 
dences that at some remote period the region now included in Periy 
township was covered by small lakes, probai)ly of glacial origin, liy 
the gradual disiidegration of the surrounding elevations, supi>lementcd 


l)y artificial drainage, the beds of these shallow lakes have been filled up 
and made tillable, so that some of the best farms in Miami county are 
in this township. The soil is a sandy loam, with a clay subsoil, which, 
when properly drained, yields abundant crops of wheat, corn, oats and 
other cereals, fruits and vegetables that are adapted to this latitude. 
When the first white men came they found here a heavy growth of tim- 
ber that had to be cleared away before farms could be opened. They also 
found considerable muck and tamarack swamp land, which has been 
drained and is now as productive as any land in the township. 

James Malcolm is credited with being the first actual settler in what 
is now Perry town.ship. He came to Indiana in 1833 and obtained a log 
cabin from an Indian village in the southeast corner of this township, 
where he settled and entered upon his self-appointed task of making a 
home in the wilderness. There is something pathetic in the fate of this 
pioneer. Ng (],n,l)t he was buoyed up by the hope that some day he 
would see the primeval forest, the wild beasts and the uncivilized natives 
disappear before the industry of his own race, and the country become 
peopled by a civilized population, of which he would be a component 
part. He lived long enough to see his dreams realized, but circum- 
stances compelled him to pass his declining years in the county a.sylum 
and he died a public charge upon the county he had helped in his earlier 
days to develop. 

In 1834 William Akright settled near ilalcolm and was the second 
white man to establish a home within the present limits of the township. 
His son, John Akright, was one of the early school teachers of Miami 
coimty and afterward was for several years a general merchant in the 
village of Gilead. Before the close of the year 1834 Mathias :\Ioyer 
located a little north of Akright and not far from the eastern boundary 
of the county. Benjamin ilusselman and Jacob (iill came either late in 
this year or early in the year 1835, but they did not enter land until 
some time afterward. 

During the year 1835 there were a inimber of immigrants to Perry 
towmship. Among them were John and Adam E. Rhodes, the former of 
whom entered a large tract of land near the center of the township. 
Adam E. Rhodes settled where the village of Gilead is now located. 
Others who came during the year 1835 were Ira Mitchell, who settled 
a short distance east of Gilead; James Waddle, near Niconza; Peter 
Onstatt, about two and a half miles southeast of Gilead; James Fiers, 
in the southeast corner of the township ; Rev. Wesley Borders, a Metho- 
dist preacher and early justice of the peace, settled near Mr. Fiers; 
Joseph Wildman and his son Joseph, southwest of Gilead ; Alfred Dowd 
and Charles Cleland, a short distance west of Gilead; James Cleland, 


four miles sniitliwist of (iili'iid: Jaincs Hij,'i;s. iiDrlliwcst of (iilead; Hen- 
jaiiiiii and David .Mar(|uis<. .laccili I\ii'liard, Willis Hill. John Walters, 
•John Andi'i-soii. .Mattiuas IJird and .lames IJiintini, who lorateil in ililTer- 
eiit i)arts of tlic lowiisliip. 

Dnriiii;- the years 1835 and 183(i lands in Perry township were 
entered liy Xatlian Seavey, Andrew Oiistatt, .Josepli Cox, John MePrea, 
Charles S. Lowe, John J\. Wright, Jerome Hoover, SHinnel Wallace. Noah 
Webl), John Wiseman, Adam Weavei-. W. II. Dubois. James Adams, 
Philip 'SI. Tahb. James Waddell, Daniel (iilehrist, Samuel A. I\ranon, 
.Miles Craig, William Kobbins, W. IT. Stnbblelield, Daniel Hawkins, 
William SI. Duff, Cyrus Taylor. Samuel and Townsend Hoover, Hiram 
and William Putler. John Howry, Joseph Heekner, John Wel>b, David 
Mowlsby and a number of others. Some of these men settled upon their 
lands and otliei's liought for the purpose of speculation. 

By the close of the year 1836 the poiuilation was sufficient to .justify 
the establishment of a new township. Accordingly, on February 27, 
1837, the count.v eoiiujiissioners ordered the erection of Perry town- 
ship, which included all that part of the county l.ving north of the pres- 
ent southern boundary of Perry. The new township was luimed in honor 
of Connnodore Oliver II. Perry, who won such a sigual victory over the 
British fleet on Lake Erie in the War of 1812. The first election was 
held a little later at the house of Peter Onstatt, Alexander Jameson act- 
ing as inspector. Weslej' Borders was elected justice of the peace, and 
(teorge Tombaugh. Hii-am Butler and William Hester were the first 

In November, 1837. the western part of Peri'y tnwnship was taken to 
form the townshii) of Cnion. Brant & Fuller's History of Jliami County, 
l)ublished in 1887, says on page 277. that a township called Lake was 
formed on June 7, 1842, which embraced the noi-thern part of Miami 
county, but the boundaries as therein ilescribed by section lines are such 
that it is impossible to trace them correctly upon the map of the county. 
The records of the ecmnty commissioners wei'e destroyed by the burn- 
ing of the coui-t house in ^larcli, 1843, so that the official description of 
Lake township is lost. It is certain, however, that the township was 
never fully organized as an independent ))olitical subdivision of Miami 

Several births occui'red in the families of the early settlers sotin after 
they came to the township, and it is uncertain just who was the first 
white chihl lioi-n in Perry. The first death was that of James Bunton, 
who died in 1835, .soon after settling on his claim. Among the early mar- 
riages was that of Thomas Clemens to a tlaughter of Joseph Wildman, in 


April. 1S36. which was prohahly tlie first in the township. IVter Ihrig 
and Elizabeth Tomhaugli were married soon afterward. 

Peter Onstatt established the first lilacksmith shop, on his farm in 
section 22, and the first mill was built by John Bowers. It was a saw- 
mill and stood on a branch of S(|nirrel creek. About 1854 Alfred Dowd 
built a steam saw-mill a short distance west of Gilead. The most con- 
venient grist mill for the early settlers was that of Benjamin Mussel- 
man, which was on Squirrel creek, .just over the line in Wabash county. 
The first tannery was started by John Daggy, and a few years before 
the beginning of the Civil war John Anglehart established a small dis- 
tillery in the northeastern part of the township. Other early industries 
were the cabinet sliop of Joseph Miller, not far from the Wabash county 
line, and the pottery of Elias Slagle, near Xiconza, where a deposit of 
clay suitable for earthenware was found about 1838. Mr. Miller also 
made the coffiiis for a numlier of the pioneers. 

Probably the first religious meeting in the township was held at the 
house of James Fiers in 1835, when a few Methodists gathered there for 
worship. Rev. Arentis Dowd and Ansel Beech were among the first to 
conduct services in Perry. The Baptists organized soon after the 
Methodists and other denominations formed congregations and built 
churches in the township at a later date. 

The first school house was built in 1837, shortly after the township 
was organized, on the Benjamin Landis farm, and the second school 
house was built the succeeding year on the farm then owned by Thomas 
Goudy. It is not certain wlui taught the first school, but among the 
early teachers were James Potter, Peter Smith, Alvin Dunbai', iVnianda 
Dowd, James Adams and C. B. Ash. In lUl:! there were eight hi'ick and 
three frame school houses in Pei'iy. valued at $17,7(10. Fourteen teachers 
were employed tluring the school year of 1912-13, three of them in the 
certified high school at Gilead, and the amount paid in teachers' salaries 
was $5,947.40 

The only railroad in Perry townshij) is the Winona Interurban 
Railway, an electric line that runs from Peru to Warsaw, passing through 
the village of Gilead, which is the onl.y town of importance in the town- 
ship. Some years ago there was a postoftice at Niconza, near the eastern 
boundary, and Stockdale antl Wheatville were trailing centers. But in 
the march of progress they failed to keep up with the procession and 
have perished entirely or remain only a siiadow of what they formerly 

Peru Township 

As much of the history of this township is intricately interwoven 
with the history of Peru, an account of many of the events that have 


<i('ciiiTi'(l witliiu its hordi'i's will be I'ouiiil in the next cliaptci'. Its shape 
is irrc^ilar; its greatest length is eighl miles; at tiic wrstcrn lininulary 
it is tliree miles from north to south, ami at the eastern houmlary it is 
nearly five miles from north to south. On the north it is houiulcil liy 
Jefferson ami Kiehland townships; on the cast by Ei'ie; on the south hy 
the Wabash river, whieh separates it I'l-oiu the township of Washinjrlon 
and Pipe Creek, and on the west hy Cass county. The area of th(' town- 
ship is about twenty-five sipuire miles. Peru is one of the two original 
townships ors'anized by the board of eounty commissioners at their first 
session in June, 18:i4, but its area has been redueccl by the foi'iiiation of 
Erie township and changes made in the boundaries b\- the reorganization 
of Jefferson in 18.'37. 

The surface of the townshij) is somewhat undulating, the drain- 
age being toward the Wabash i-ivei-, which i-uns along the southern bor- 
der. About ten miles of ditches have been constructed in the township 
at a cost of some $20,0()(), and by this means the cultivation of the nat- 
urally fertile soil has been much improved. 

Transportation facilities are of the best. The Wabasli Railroad runs 
east and west along the river of that name, the Lake Erie & Western and 
the Chesapeake & Ohio the township, the electric lines of the Winona 
Interurban Railway Company, the Indiana Union Traction Company 
<ui(l the Fort Wayne & Xorthern Indiana Traction Company traverse 
practically all parts of the town.ship. All those lines, lioth steam and 
i'lecti'ic, center at Peru. 

The first school in the township was taught in the town of Peru, in 
a little log cabin that had been erected for a dwelling, but whieh the 
people fitted up for a school house at their own expense. It was erected 
by William Smith, in the fall of iy;?4, and was located on Third street. 
In ]'.)]■', there were seven brick sclmol buihlings in the township (exclu- 
sive of those in the city of Peru), the value of which was estimated at 
-$20,250. During the school year of 1912-1:5 ten teachers were employed 
in the public schools of the township and they received in salaries the 
sum of $4,804.80. In 191M the taxabb' property of the township was 
asses.sed at $1,414,250. 

Pii'E Creek Townsiiu' 

Immediately south of the Wabash I'ivcr, in the western tier, lies 
Pipe Creek township, wliirh takes its name from the streairi thai flows 
across it in a northwesterly direction. It is bounded on tiie north by 
Peru township: on the east by AVashington; on the south by Deer 
Creek, and on the west by the county of Cass. Its greatest length from 
iioi'lh to south is a little less than seven miles, and it is four miles in 


width from east to west. Its total area is almut tweiity-seveii square 

The surface is diversified and the soil is a black loam nii.xrd with day 
in some places and with sand in others. Pipe creek and its triliutaries 
afford good natural drainage, so that this township has not been com- 
pelled to resort to artificial drainage as much as some of the others of 
Miami county. A heavy growth of fine timber once covered this section 
of the county. l)ut the most valuable trees have long since been converted 
into lumber. 

Wlieu the first white settlers came to this townshiji they found an 
Indian village, knowai as S(|uirrel village, situated on the noi-th bank 
of Pipe creek, a short distance northwest of the present town of Bunker 
Hill. The village consisted of about a dozen log huts and the chief was 
known as "Old S(|uirrelly," after whom the village was named. He was 
a Pottawatomi who. it is .said had formerly lived near Plymouth. Init 
was driven away from there on account of his cruelty. He then mar- 
ried a Miami scjuaw and became chief of the village, the other inhaliitauts 
of which were Miamis. 

Accounts of the first settlers say that Samuel Durand and John 
Wilson located in Pipe Creek township in the year 1838. but it is not 
certain which one of these pioneers came first. Wilson was more of a 
hunter than a farmer and after a short residence sold his cabin to a man 
named Finney, after which he disappeared from :\liami county. In 1839 
Joel Julian settled on Pipe I'reek, in the western pai-t ; John Betzner in 
the northeastern part, and Maston Thomas and his father in the north- 
ern part. Jacol) Kellar and William Clark came in 1840 and the ue.\t 
year the population was increased by the arrival of several pioneers with 
their families. Isaac Vandorn settled near Pipe creek, in the central 
part ; Jacob Brandt, on section 1-1, where his father, :\Iartin Brandt, had 
previously entered a tract of land ; Moses Larimer, on a tract ad.jacent 
to the present town of Bunker Hill ; Joab IMendenhall, near the line of 
Deer Creek township ; James A. Lewis, who made the first improvements 
on the Brandt farm ; and James Petty, who settled in the northern part. 
Among those who came in 1842 were Jeremiah Shafer and Isaac Mar- 
(fuiss, who settled on Pipe creek, in the eastern part of the township. 

In 1843 John and Peter Reed settled in the central part; Jacob Pot- 
tartf, who was one of the pioneer blacksmiths, farther east : James IMcGin- 
nis, near Bunker Hill; Robert Jenniss, near Pipe creek; Frederick 
Keller, in the eastern part; Henry Crabb and Godfrey Helderly, in the 
central part ; Rev. Samuel Dewese, about a mile west of Bunker Hill ; 
David Carr, in the northern part ; Noah Townsend, in the w^estern part ; 
John and Eli Oliver, near Bunker Hill, and a number of others in 


various parts of the township. JiroIj, Daniel and William Kite were 
also anioug the early settlers. In the summer of this year (1843) the 
settlers in this pai't of the county began to agitate the i)U('stion of organ- 
izing a new townshii). The eustoiuary petition was eireulated and when' 
signed by a suffieient niiinber of citizens it was presented to the board of 
county coniiuissioners. On Septeiiiber G, 184)!, the board granted the 
prayer of the pt'titioners by onlering the erection of Pipe Creek town- 
ship, and that the Hrst election should be hchl at the house of William 
Clark in October. At that election seventeen votes were east. The elec- 
tion board consisted of William Clark, .James I'etty, David Carr, Peter 
Redd and Jacob Brandt. Thomas Kenwortliy was chosen tlie first justice 
of the i)eace ; Jacob Keller, road supervisor; and a constable was also 
elected, but his name cannot be ascertained. 

One of the earliest births in Pipe Creek tow nship was that of Naucy J., 
daughter of iloses and Xaucy Larimer, who was born in 1844. The 
marriage of James McCrary to Sarah Larimer, in 1843, was probably 
the lirst in the townshij), and the tirsl death was probably that of an 
infant child of Noah Townsend. 

As early as ]8.'Jti a saw-mill was built liy I'rank Godfroy on Pipe creek, 
near where the Wallick mill was afterward erected. When John Duck- 
wall came to tlie township he repairei.1 the (loul)le log house in which 
Chief Squirrelly had formerly lived, and resiiled there a number of 
years. In 18oU Air. Duckwall built a saw-mill and live years later erected 
a grist mill. Loth these mills were burned in 1857, but the saw-mill was 
rebuilt the same year and the grist mill in I87(i. Other early mills were 
those of Henry Knell, li. T. Jones and Thomas Keuworthy, all of which 
were located on Pipe creek. The Wallick grist mill was built in 1856 
and the lime kiln near the null was opened about ten years later. 
Another early industry was the distillery of Charles Lewy, in the north- 
ern part of the township, which he conilucted with success for about a 
year, when he sold to some persons who soon afterward iliscontinued the 

The lirst religious services were held at the house of Isaac \'andorn 
in 1843, by a .Methodist minister named Matthew Curry. Rey. Mr. 
Pugsley, a minister of the United Brethren church, also held services 
there at an early date, but the tirst church society organized was that 
of the Baptists, which was organized by Rev. Saumel Dewese, at his 
residence near Bunker Hill. Since then churches have been established 
by the German Baptists, Christians and some other denominations. There 
was once a Catholic church at Bunker Ilill, but it was abandoned some 
years ago. 

P'rom tile best authoritv available, it is learned tiiat the tirst school 

142 TTTSTORY OF :\iTA:\n rorxTY 

house in the township \v;is Iniilt in the year IS4H, on tin- rjirin of Joel 
Julian, and the first school was taught there the following winter. The 
name of the first teacher has been forgotten, but among the pioneer 
instructors of this township were Jacob Barnett and Eiza Barnett, both 
of whom taught in the Julian school house. Not long after the first 
school house was built another was erected on the farm of Rev. Samuel 
Dewese, who was the first teacher in that district. Another pioneer 
school house stood on the farm of Jacob Brandt. In 1913 there were 
si.\ brick school houses in the township — not including the graded school 
building in the town of Bunker Hill — the estimated value of which 
was !f;10,000. The nine teachers employed in these houses during the 
school year of 1912-18 received in salaries the sum of $3,949.50. 

Bunker Hill, aii incorporated town, is the only town in Pipe Creek 
township. It is i3ituated in the southeastern part, at the crossing of the 
Lake Erie & Western and the Pan Handle railroads, the former of which 
runs north and south along the entire eastern border of the township, 
and the latter crosses the southern portion. These two roads and the 
electric line of the Indiana Union Traction Company, which also runs 
through Bunker Hill, aiford ample transportation facilities to the people 
of Pipe Creek township. A short distance north of Bunker Hill, on the 
Lake Erie & Western Railroad, was once the little village of Leonda, 
but the advantages of the two railroads at Bunker Hill were too great to 
be overcome and Leonda disappeared from the map. 

Richland Townsiiii' 

After Perry, this is the largest township in Miami county. It is situ- 
ated northeast of the center of the county; is bt)unded on the north by 
Perry to^\^lshil) ; on the east by Wabash county ; on the south by the 
townships of Erie and Peru, and on the west by Jefferson and Union. On 
the northern boundary its extent is seven miles from east to west, on 
the southern it is six miles, and it is six miles from north to south. The 
total area of the township is about thirty-nine square miles. The Eel 
river enters near the northeast corner antl flows in a southwesterly direc- 
tion across the township, crossing the western liorder about two miles 
north of the southwest corner. Its principal tributaries in Richland are 
Flowers and Bachelor creeks. This stream, with its tributaries, fur- 
nishes a good drainage system for the township. The soil is of unusual 
fertility and some of the finest farms in the state are located in the Eel 
river valley. 

In the year 1836. David Williams built the first log cabin in what 
is now Richland town.ship, and to him belongs the honor of being th 



first actual st'ttlcr in tliat pai't of Miami c-ounty. Somi aftci' him caiiie 
John and James Long and William Jones, ami so far as i-an lie leanieil 
they were the only white inhabitants at the elose of the year. Early in 
1837 Robert IMiller, John Ellison, Allen Loekridge and James Conner 
located claims aud began clearing farms in the township. Later in the 
year there were a number of pioneers selected lands in the Eel river 
valley. Among them were John Conner, ^Martin Seruggs. Moses and 
Jesse .Martindale, Richard Miller, Daniel Ward, Alvin Riddle, Edmnml 
I. Kidd. Thomas Smith and William Bish. 

Altliough the population was rather scanty, Kichland townshii) was 
erected by the county commissioners on November 7, 1837, hut the fii-st 
township oificers were not elected until in August, 1838. Then an elec;- 
tion was held at Ihc house of David Williams. Ednunid 1. Kidd and 
Martin Scruggs were chosen justices of the peace; Moses .Martindale, 
Thomas Smith and David Williams, township trustees. 

During the years 1838 and 1839 there was a tide of immigration to 
Richland township, which was so named by the commissioners when it 
was erected in 1837, on account of the fertility of the soil. Ileiiiy 
Norris settled a short distance of Paw Paw village; Amos lAlurphy, John 
Jliller, R. C. Harrison and Robert Watson, in the eastern part; Samuel 
Rank, near the northeast corner; near him located a man named Finley, 
on Eel river ; Samuel Fisher, east of Chili ; Caleb Petty, in the southei'n 
part; Enos Baldwin and John Sellers, on section 23, about a i}iile and a 
half east of Denver ; and David Graham and Benjamin Baltimore, on 
section 13. Others who came in these years and settled in different parts 
of the township were: Joseph Clark, ilichael Taylor, Thomas Black, 
Josiah and William Petty, Peter Woolpert, Reuben Overman, Samuel 
Hart, Reuben K. Charles, Jacob Peer, Samuel Jameson, Je.sse Murphy, 
Willis Hill, Charles, James and Amos Woolej', Jonathan P^isher, James 
Ilolinshade, Benjamin Griffith, David JMarquiss, Samuel Ileilman, 
Andrew Hann, Jacol) Lander, Alanson Dowd, Andrew Wolfe, Samuel 
Davis and James Tracy. 

When the first settlers came to Ricliland the ucai'est grist null was 
that of Burrell Daniels, in Jefferson township, and to this mill the pio- 
neers went through the woods with a "turn of corn," or, after their 
farms were cleared, with a sack of wheat. About 1841 George Goudy 
built a mill on the Eel river, on what was afterward known as the John 
Davis farm, and it was not long until he had a good patronage. The 
building was a frame and the mill was supplied with good machinery 
for that day. Under various owners it continued in operation until about 
1883. John Long built a saw-mill on Flowers creek, near Chili, about 
184(). Later he sold out to William McColley, who converted it into a 


IllSTUin Ol'' -MlA.Mi COLXTY 

grist-mill and ran it as such for several years. William Miller then built 
a saw-mill on the Eel river, opposite the village of Chili. Sometiuie in 
the early forties ^Ir. Martiudale built a eardiug maehiue ou Flowers 
creek, not far from Chili, and about the same time Robert [Miller estab- 
lished a saw-mill on Paw Paw creek. He was one of the prominent cit- 
izens, served a term in the state senate, and hLs son, Rev. S. C. ]Miller, still 
resides in the township. The carding machine was subsequently con- 
verted into a flour mill. • For many years the saw-mills did a good busi- 

The Old Mexico Mill 

ness, but after the most valuable timlier was manufactured into lumber 
the mills were removed to other localities (ir allowed to fall into decay. 

In 1837 a few ]\Iethodists and their friends met at the house of Rob- 
ert Jliller for worship. About a year later a society was organized and 
in 1842 a church was built on the farm of Richard Miller, the first in 
Richland township. The Chili [Methodist church was organized about 
1839 and since then the Baptists and some other denominations have 
organized congregations in the township, an account of wliich will be 
found in the chapter on Church History. 

The first school house was built on the farm of Robert Watson in 


18."^8, and Mi-. Watson taught the tirst tt-rni of scliool in it after it was 
foniplctcd. A year or so later ant)tlR'r school house was built on the 
farm of Moses Martindale, whose son was the first teaelier in that district. 
In l!)i;j there wi-re four brick and five frame school houses in Ricldand, 
valued at $9,235, and the eleven teachers employed received .$8,949.20 in 

Probably tlie tirst white ciiiid born in thi" township was Robert, son 
of Kolii It and Rebecca Miller, who was born in 1888. One of the earliest 
marriages was that of Willis Buck to a Jliss Watson, daughter of Rob- 
ert Watson, in 1889. Later iu the same year Ednuuul Blackman was 
united in marriage with a daughter of David Williams. Margaret Miller, 
a daugliter of Richard MiUer. died in 1840, wliicii was the tirst death 
in the township. 

Chili, a station on the Vandalia Railroad a little southwest of the 
center, is the principal town of Richland township. East of Chili, on the 
same line of railroad, is the village of Pettysville. It has a postofficc 
ami some siiii)i)ing is done from that point. Anson, Paw Paw and 
Wooleytowii, once thriving settlements in Richland, are among the 
deserted villages of .Miami county. A history of these places may be 
found in tiie chapter on Towns and Villages. 

The \'andalia Railroad enters the township from the west near the 
center of the boundai'y line and follows the north side of the Eel river 
into Wabash county. At Chili this road is crossed by the Winona Inter- 
urlian, an electric liiu^ that runs from Peru to Wai'saw. These two 
roads provide fairly good transportation facilities to the township. 

Union Township 

The territory corapri.siug this township was originally a part of 
•Ictt'ei-son, and the first settlers located before the townsiiip was cut off as 
a separate political division on November 7. 1887. I'nion township is 
one of the western tier. It is bounded on the nortii by Allen township, 
on the east by Peny and Richland, on the south by Jefferson, and on the 
west by county. It is four and a half miles from north to south 
and five miles from east to west. In the extreme southeast corner about 
one-foui-th of a s(|uare mile has been cut off from Union and added to 
Jefferson, so that the area of Union is a fraction less than twenty-two 
and a half square miles. When the township was first created it con- 
tained all of the present township of Allen and a small portion of the 
western part of Richland. Along Weesau creek and the smaller streams 
of the township the land is .somewhat broken, but back from the creeks 
the surface is generally level. In the northwestern part are "the bar- 


rens," where the only timber is the small jackoak. Several low, sandy 
marshes, once unfit for cultivation, have been drained aud now yield 
abundant crops. The southern part was originally well timbered \vith 
black walnut, hickory, oak, ash and some other varieties of native forest 

lu the spring of 1835 Joseph Thoruburg, William Cannon and John 
Plaster selected lands in what is now Union township and built their 
cabins on the frontier of civilization. Joseph Cox, who came about the 
same time, made a few improvements and then went elsewhere. In the 
fall of that year came Abraham Leedy, John Pall and John Zook, who 
settled in the same neighborhood with those who came the spring before. 
The next year a number of persons brought their families into the town- 
ship. Among them were Martin Hoover, who settled in the northern 
part ; John E. Wright, near the present village of Deedsville ; Christian 
Krider, near the western boundary; John F. Sanders and Hugh A. B. 
People, in the southern part. 

Among those who came in 1837 were ]\Iatthew Fenimore, who settled 
on the site of Perrysburg; Stephen Davidson, W^illiam Williams and 
Daniel Cox, in the same locality; John A. Taylor, iu the central part; 
John Sliephers, near the western border; William Bane and Samuel 
Robbins, in the northern part ; John Scott, near the center of the town- 
ship, and a few others, who located their claims in different sections. 

At the house raisings in pioneer days it was customary to provide a 
supply of whisky for the men invited to assist in raising the cabin. It 
is related of William Cool, who came to the township in the spring of 
1839, that he decided to raise his house without the aid of liquor. He 
invited his friends to the "raising," and announced his intention to 
give them a dinner they would not soon forget. Various articles of food 
were brought from a distance to prepare that dinner, but Mr. Cool kept 
his word and those who partook of that meal remembered for many 
days afterward. No whisky was provided and after that a dinner "like 
Mr. Cool's" was preferred to intoxicating drinks. His cabin was a story 
and a half in height, probably the first of that character in that part of 
the county. It stood near the old road that ran from JMiamisport to the 
Tippecanoe river and the passing Indians used to stop and admire the 
house with such expressions as "Humph! white man heap big wigwam!" 

Other pioneers who located in Union between the years 1837 and 1840 
were: J. A. Howland, Daniel and Joseph Kessler, Jonathan Carlisle, 
Christopher Cool and his sons — William, Leonard, Powell, John aud 
Philip, Orson Warner, Daniel Crouch, Chauncey Warner, Perry Tharp, 
Joseph Holman, Solomon Lee, Isaac Benedict, Lewis Conner, William 
and Charles Strowd, David Leedy, Robert James, James Personett, 


Joliu Eiusley, William R. ^IcFarlaiul, Thomas \V,vatt, Caleb Fitzgcrakl, 
H. B. Jett, Zephaniah "VVade, William Duck, John Dabney, Aaron Rush, 
Michael liolinfrbauj;]! and Roliert Clemleninp:. 

A trading post was established at Perrysburg in Ib'M and about a 
year later John A. Taylor built the first saw-mill on Weesau creek. Later 
.Mr. Taylor built a grist mill near the same site, with two run of buhrs, 
equipped to grind both corn and wheat. This mill proved a great bless- 
ing to the settlers, who had been compelled to go long distances to secure 
a supply of breadstuff's, and the propi'ietor did a good business for a 
number of years. Under dill'erent owners this mill was run until about 

About 1S:59 Josepli TTolman built a saw-mill, with a set of corn buhrs 
attached, in another part of the township, and a year or two later John 
Zook l)uilt a small saw-mill on the east branch of Weesau creek. It was 
subsequently i)urchased by a man named IMatthias, who ran it a shoi't 
time and then permitted it to fall into decay. The first steam mill was 
built by William Conner, a short distance south of Perrysburg. The 
Josepii ITolman above mentioned, was the man who laid out the town of 
.Miamisport, but soon afterward removed to Union township, where he 
built the first frame house, in the southeast corner of the township, and 
there started a tanyard at an early day. During the i'ew years he 
conducted it he made much of the leather used by the pioneers in that 
part of the county. 

Pi'obably the first white child born in the township was :\Iary, daugh- 
ter of Martin and Sarah Hoover, who was born in January, 18:i7. Later 
in that year occurred the death of Susan Haltimore, which was the 
first death. Her funeral was held at the residence of ALirtin Hoover and 
the sermon deliv<'red on that occasion is said to have been the first over 
preached in Union township. In the spring of 1838 the marriage of 
Jacob Piirtlett to a daughter of Hugh A. B. People was solemnized by 
A. II. Leeily, justic-e of the peace, which some authorities claim was the 
first marriage in the township. 

The first election for township officers in Union was held at Matthew 
Fenimore's store, in Perrysburg, in the fall of 18:57, soon after the town- 
ship was erected by oi-der of the county commissioners. Abraham H. 
Leedy acted as inspector of the election and was chosen the first justice 
of the peace. Powell Cool was elected townshii) clerk. If any other 
officers were elected at that time their names have been lost. It is some- 
thing umisual for any candidate for office to serve as a member of an 
election board, but in that day it appears that nothing was thought of 
such an occurrence, and everybody was satisfied with the election of 
"S(iuire" Leedy. 


The Weesau Creek Baptist church was organized in 1839; tlie Presby- 
terian church at Perrysburg ten years hiter, and the Christian and 
MethocUst churches were organized at a comparatively early date. 

Almost immediately after the organization of the township, the 
settlers began to consider some means of educating their children. In 
1838 the first school house was built on the farm of John Plaster and 
the first school was taught there in that year by Miss JIaliala Scott. She 
is said to have been a young woman of somewhat limited literary attain- 
ments, but of good common sense, and taught a school that was satis- 
factory to the patrons. Two more school houses were erected in tiie year 
1839. In 1913 Union township had one brick and four frame school 
houses, the estimated value of which was $16,350. During the school 
year of 1912-13 nine teachers were employed in the public sciiools and 
received in salaries the sum of $3,854.20. 

The Lake Erie & Western Railroad enters the township near the 
southeast corner and runs in a northerly direction, crossing the northern 
bountlary about two miles west of the northeast corner. Deedsville is a 
station on this road. In the western part of the township is the old vil- 
lage of Perrysburg. and old maps of the county show a station on the 
Lake Erie & Western Railroad called liusaco, about two miles south 
of Deedsville. 

Washington Township 

This township lies directly across the Wabash river from the city of 
Peru and extends southward to the line dividing townships 25 and 26 
north. Its greatest length is nearly eight miles and it is four miles in 
width from east to west, having an area of a little less than thirty square 
miles. The northern boundary is the center of the Wabash river to the 
mouth of the Mississinewa, thence up that stream to the range line divid- 
ing ranges 4 and 5 east, which forms the eastern boundary. North of 
it is Peru to\viiship, on the east it is bounded by Butler, on the south 
by Clay, and on the west by the township of Pipe Creek. 

Little Pipe creek flows in a northwesterly direction through the 
central part of Washington and enters the Wabash river near the north- 
west corner. Big Pipe creek flows across the southwest corner and these 
streams, with the Wabash and Mississinewa rivers, afford good drain- 
age to all portions of the township. Most of the surface is high land 
and along the streams are rugged and romantic bluffs, showing some of 
the finest landscape scenery in the county. A little of the land is low, 
but it has been reclaimed by artificial drainage. This land lies in the 
southern part of the township and it is related that the people wiio settled 


on the higher lands in the northern part were wont, in the early days, to 
refer to fanners along Big Pipe ereek as "swamp angels." 

But the patienee and industry of these "swamp angels" in draining 
tlieir lands have been handsomely rewarded. Their farms are among the 
most produetive in the county, while the soil of the uplands has "run 
out," to some extent, and has to be replenished by the use of fertilizers. 
When the first white men came the soil of these uplands was quite fertile. 
The leaves that fell from the trees of the heavy forest acted as a natui-al 
fertilizer, but that source of repair has practically vanished. Large 
(luantities of lumber and thousands of staves have been shipped from 
Washington township in the years gone by, and the constant cultivation 
of the land after the timber was cleared off has had its effect, though 
there are still many fine farms in the towiiship. 

The first white man to locate within the present limits of Washington 
township was Thomas Henton, who came in the summer of 1838 and 
built a cabin on a hill overlooking the old Strawtown and JMiamisport 
state road. ]\lr. Henton was unmarried and for a few years after settling 
in Miami county kept bachelor's hall in his cabin and spent much of his 
time in hunting. He then married a Miss Dabney, daughter of one of the 
pioneers, and turned his attention more to the development of his farm. 
After his death his widow married William Demuth and the place 
entered by Mr. Henton became known as the Demuth farm. 

During the year 1839 a number of settlers located claims in the town- 
ship. Among them were Patrick O'Brien, who had come from Ireland 
in his boyhood twentj' years before ; John Bargerhoof , Thomas 'JMeara, 
Daniel Taggett, Bradley Witham, George Beck, John Gindling, Michael 
Duffy, John Cleiker, Guinton Key and Patrick Colgan. Daniel Taggett 
located where the town of South Peru now stands and for some time 
operated a ferry across the Wabash river. 

After 1839 the increase in population was gradual, but constant, a 
few new immigrants arriving every year until the township was fully 
settled. Jacob Struble and George Clickard came in 1840. ]Mr. Struble 
was one of the early road supervisors and opened some of the public 
highways, one of which is still known as the "Struble road." He was 
at one time the owner of considerable land. About the time of the arrival 
of Struble and Clickard, or shortly afterward, came JIalachi Kuhn, Alex- 
ander Wilson, Emanuel Charpie, William Weakler and a few others. 
Others who settled in the township in the early '40s were: James Dab- 
ney, whose daughter became the wife of Thomas Henton, William Lyeee, 
John Miller, Isaac Miller, Jacob Keller, ^lichael Case, John Allen, James 
Sharp, David Myers, Abel Hennen, James Downey, John Hunt, William 
King, John Davidson. Frederick Harter, John Scott, Amos Ranks, 


Tlioinas Goudy. Arthur Bland. Otis Fisli, B. F. York, Jerry Shafer, 
Philip and William j\Iort, Samuel Jameson, Frederick Coleman, Caleb 
Corey, Ephraim Bearss, John York, Martin Flagg, David Dunn, John 
and Conrad Hawes, Robert .McKinney and W. 11. ^Nlisener, the last named 
settling on the Richardsville reserve, near the junction of the Wabash 
and Mississinewa rivers. 

On June 6, 1S4.S. the board of county commissioners issued the order 
erecting Washington townshij), which was named for General George 
Washington, "the father of his country" and the first president of 
the United States. As originally established, Washington township 
extended south to the county- line, but in 1846 six miles was cut off of 
the south end to form the township of Clay. A few weeks after the 
township was organized the first election was held at the cabin of Thomas 
Henton, when Isaac ililler was elected .justice of the peace and Patrick 
O'Brien, constable. 

The first marriage was that of Patrick Colgan to Bridget Kennedy, 
in 1841, and their son, Lawrence, boi'n the following year, is lielieved 
to liave been the first white child born in the township. Probably the 
first death was that of John Hunt, which occurred in February, 1842. 

As early as 1843 a minister by the name of Johnson visited the 
tovraship and held services at the house of John Allen, but it cannot 
be learned what denomination he represented. About a year later two 
United Brethren preachers — Hoover and Simons — came into the town- 
ship and laid the foundation for the congregation that was organized 
in 1846. The Presliyterians and Dunkards sul)se(juently organized so- 
cieties. (See Chapter XVII.) 

In the matter of education, the people of Washington townsliip have 
not been behind their neighbdrs in other parts of the county. In 1842, 
nearly a year before the township was organized, the settlers employed 
a teacher to open a school in a little cabin that had been built for a 
dwelling on the farm owned by John Allen. The succeeding year a 
regular school house was built on the farm of Patrick Colgan, in wliich 
the first school was taught by Lucy O'Brien. Other pioneer teachers 
were Abel Hurt, Alford Sparks and a man named Ilobaugh. At the 
present time Washington has the only concrete school house in the 
county. In addition to this building there are in the township .seven 
brick and one frame school houses, the estimated value of the whole 
being $18,500. During the school year of 1912-13 thirteen teachers 
were employed in the public schools and the amount paid for teachers' 
salaries by the township was $5,453.50. 

About a mile south of Peru, in Washington township, is located the 
county asylum, or poor farm. It is on the old Strawtown road and a 


line of tlif liiili:in;i I'liidii 'I'l'iLction Company [masses near the buildings. 
Fai'tliiT east tlie Chesapeake & Ohio Kailroad runs from southeast to 
northwest across the tow nshiji. but there is no station on that line within 
the borders of Washini;ton. South Peru, in the extreme northern 
part, just across the Waliasli ri'oiii the eity of Peru, is the only lowii in 
the township, henee it is liardly iiece.ssary to state that agriculture and 
stock raising- are the principal occu])ations of the people, though some 
manufacturing is carried on in South Peru. 

One of the first meclianics in the township was Abraham Bilheimer, 
a cabinet-maker by trade, who made some of the furniture used by the 
early settlers, a few pieces of which aie still in existence, John Alien 
was probalily the first wagon-maker. In early days there were a few 
sawmills located along the streams, but they have long since ceased to 

Eighty years have passed since the county of Miami was organ- 
ized and the first two civil townshijis were established. In this chap- 
ter and the one preceding, the aim has been to present the names of 
many of the men who aided in redeeming this region from the wilder- 
ness and the savage: to chronicle some of the ])rincipal events that have 
occurred in different parts of the county during that period, and to 
show the progress of settlement and developnu^nt that has led to the 
i'ormation of the fourteen political subdivisions called townships. In 
these chapters the reader will doubtless have noticed and recognized 
the names of a number of pioneers whose descendants are still resi- 
dents of Miami county. But the men who organized the county have 
passed finm I he stage of action, and few are left who assisted in shap- 
ing the destiny of the county during the early years of its history. 
]\Iany interesting incidents have been forgotten, because they were al- 
lowed to pass unrecorded. If this chapter and its predecessor shall 
contribute in rescuing from fast failing tradition some of the simple 
annals of the pioneers, their object will have been accomplished. It 
has iieen said, and it is i)robably true as a rule, that the lives of the 
early settlers were aimless and void of ambition, their chief purpose 
having been to provide sustenance for the families dependent upon 
them. Yet they builded wiser than they knew when they braved the 
dangers and hardships of the frontier, worked out their self-appointed 
tasks with patient energy, resolution and self-sacrifice, and i)aved the 
way for the manifobl bles,sings and comforts of the civilization the 
present generation enjoys. History is always ready to record the glori- 
ous deeds of the general who leads an army to victory, the scientist who 
gives to the world a great discovery, or the statesman who thrills a 
le'Mslative bodv with his ornto7-y. 1-iut the pioneer, who, with his ax 


and his rifle, pushed boldly into the unexplored and uueoiiquered re- 
gions of the country and established his luiml)le log eabin as the out- 
post of civilization, is no less entitled to honorable mention in the 
records of the nation's progress. True, they achieved no great vic- 
tories over enemies, they made no great discoveries or inventions, but 
by their patient toil they made possible the introduction of the railroad, 
the great manufacturing concern and the cities with which the land is 
dotted over at the beginning of the twentieth century. It is to be hoped 
that some day their labors, customs and the importance that attaches 
to their simple mode of living will be better undci-stood and appreciated. 
If these chapters shall assist, in the slightest degree, in bringing about 
that understanding and appreciation, they will not have been written 
in vain. 



TiiK IIoLMAX Purchase — JIiamisi-urt — Early Settlers — Sketches of 
A Pew Pioneers — Peru Laid Out— Secures the County Seat — 
Early Prominent Citizens — First Incorporation of the Town — 
First Officers and Ordinances — The "Red Ladders" — Incorpo- 
rated BY Specl\l Act of the Legisl^\ture in 1848 — Hog or No Hog 
— Additions to Peru — F'ire Department. — Water Works — -Gas 
Works — Electric Light Plant — Commercial Club — City Park — 
Public Improvements — Postofpice — Municipal Finances — List of 
Mayors — Miscellaneous. 

Peru, the county seat and only incorporated city of Jliami county, is 
situated on the north bank of the Wabash river, a little southwest of the 
geographical center of the county. Its history begins with the treaty 
negotiated with the Miami Indians at the mouth of the Mississinewa river 
on October 23, 1826, at which time John B. Richardville, the principal 
chief of the Miamis, was granted, among other tracts of land, a reservation 
of one section where the city now stands. The following February John 
McGregor built a small cabin on the western part of this reservation and 
he has the credit of being the first white man to establish a permanent 
domicile within the present limits of Miami county. On August 
18, 1827, Richardville and his wife, Pem-e-se-(iuah, conveyed this .sec- 
tion to Joseph Holman for a consideration of $500, and it is said that 
part of the price was "paid in trade," instead of all cash. 

On March 3, 1828, the transfer of this land was approved by Presi- 
dent John Quincy Adams and on January 7, 1829, Holman sold 210 
acres of the east end of the section to William N. Hood for .$500 — 
just what he had paid for the entire section less than four months 
before. It was Holman 's ambition to found a town on the remaining 
portion of his land and on i\Iarch 12, 1829, David Hurr, a surveyor 
employed for the purpose by Mr. Holman, laid out the town of Miamis- 
port on the southwest quarter of the section. The original plat of 
]\Iiamisport shows four streets running east and west — Water, Jackson, 
ilarkct and Canal — and six streets running north and south — Clay, 



Cherry, Produce. ^Main. "Walinit and Eichardville. Provisions were 
also made for a public square aud a market place. 

At that time the territory now comprising :\Iiami county was a 
part of Cass county, which included all the present counties of Cass, 
Miami, Wabash. Fulton. ]\Iarshall, Kosciusko, Elkhart and St. Joseph, 
and parts of Starke, Pulaski and Laporte. Settlers were beginning to 
come into the Wabash valley and it was evident that the county of Cass 
would soon be divided aud a number of new counties formed. Then, 
too, there was already some talk of a canal to connect the waters of the 
Great Lakes with the Ohio river, following the course of the Wabash, 
and ]\Ir. Holman hoped to establish a town that would at once become 
the county seat of a new county aud a commercial center on the line 
of the canal, in case it was built. Part of his dream was realized, as 
Miamisport was for a brief spell the seat of justice of j\Iiami county 
in 1834. 

Graham gives the names of Louis Drouillard. Benjamin H. Scott, 
Andrew and Isaac Marquiss, Abuer Overman, Zephaniah Wade, Z. W. 
Pendleton, Walter D. Nesbit. William N. Hood _and Joseph Holman as 
the residents at Miamisport about the time the town was laid out. Con- 
cerning the early business enterprises, the same authority says: "G. 
W. Holman. mindful of the soles of the early settlers, tanned' their hides 
and furni.shed leather at this point, while John McGregor, equally 
thoughtful about their bodies, opened a tavern. He also looked after 
their letters as postmaster and regulated their morals by holding the 
scales of the blind goddess in exact equipoise, as justice of the peace. 
Captain Louis Drouillard was one of the 'merchant princes.' He lived 
at the east end of Water street, where he had a store for trade with 
the Indians and supplied the modest wants of the people at low prices, 
and never dreamed of hemg offered 'A silver pound to row us o'er the 
ferry,' which he kept at that point, for the price fixed by law was, for 
a man, six and a fourth cents, and a man and horse, twenty-five cents." 

It is to be regi'etted that not more is known of the early settlers of 
Miamisport. Joseph Holman, the proprietor of the town, was born in 
Kentucky in 1788 and in 1820 removed to Wayne county, Indiana. 
During the administration of President John Q. Adams he was land 
commissioner at Fort Wayne and just before Miami county was erected 
represented the district composed of Allen and Cass counties in the 
legislature. In 1839 he returned to Wayne county, where he died in 
1872. He was an active politician during the greater part of his mature 
life and was a delegate to the convention that framed the present con- 
stitution of Indiana. His first residence in :\Iiami county was a small 
cabin on the bank of the Wabash river, a short distance below the 


town of Miamisport, where he lived for several years, when he built a 
stone house on Ilolman street between Main and Third streets, within 
the present limits of Peru. Subsequently he built a frame house on his 
farm and lived there until he went back to AYayne county. 

William N, Hood, one of the most influential men in the early history 
of the county and founder of the city of Peru, was born in Ohio in 
1791. ^Vhen only aliout eijjhteen years of age he eame to Indiana, 
first locating at Fort Wayne, where he was engaged in mercantile pur- 
suits for several years and amassed considerable wealth for that period. 
In 1831 he came to Miami county and in 1886 was elected to represent 
the counties of Cass and Miami in the state legislature. He was again 
elected representative in 1838, and died in July of that year, soon after 
the expiration of the legislative session. 

\Yalter D. Nesbit, another i)ioneer, was born in Ohio in 1811 and 
eame to Miamispoi't with his mother and sister in the fall of 1830. A 
rude log hut was hastily erected, in which they lived during the winter. 
Before locating at Miamisport the family had lived for about two 
months at Logansport. Mr. Nesbit continued to be a resident of the 
county until his death in April, 1895. He was the first supervisor of 
the county. In 1832 he married Miss Lonana Riley, who survived him 
after a married life of more than sixty years. 

Z. W. Pendleton kept a tavern and is said to have been "one of the 
best fiddlers in the Wabash valley." This qualification made him a 
popular figure at the country dances, but after a short residence in the 
county he moved away and all subsequent history of him has been lost. 

Abner Overman, who was the first treasurer of Miami county, left 
for fields unknown a few years after the expiration of his term of office; 
Louis Drouillard died in 1847; .\ndrew and Isaac Marquiss both died at 
an early day, though some of their descendants still reside in the county. 

William M. Reyburn, a native of Virginia, where he was born on 
October 21, 1792, grew to manhood in Ohio, where about 1829 he was 
licensed to preach by the I\Iethodist conference. In October, 1831, he 
eame to what is now Miami county and settled on a tract of land imme- 
diately west of that bought from Richardville l>y Jo.seph Holman, Re- 
fore coming to Indiana he had served as a soldier in the war of 1812 
and had held the rank of major in the Ohio militia. He represented 
Miami county in both branches of the state legislature and served three 
years as county commissioner. He was one of the first ilethodist min- 
isters in Miami county and was always a willing helper of every move- 
ment for the betterment of the community. He died on June 1, 1854. 

The boundaries of the old town of ^Miamisport are now marked by 
Main street on the north; LaFayette street on the east; Holman street 
on the west, and the Wabash river on the south. During the first five 


years of its existence its {frowtli was "slow but sure" aud its founder 
had hopes that some day it woukl beeome a town of importance on the 
great Wabash & Erie eaiial. Then a rival sprang up that blighted 
the prospects of Miamisport and in time blotted it from the map. It 
will be remembered that William N. Hood had bnujjht 210 acres of the 
east end of Ilohnau's section in January. 1829. Whether it was his 
intention at the time of the purchase to found a town upon that tract 
is not known, but about the time Miami county was organized, early 
in 1834, he determined to found a town there and make an effort to 
secure the county seat. There is a sort of tradition that William M. 
Reyburn, whose land adjoineil that of Ilolman on the west, had united 
with that gentleman to extend the town of Miamisport westward. This 
hastened ^Ir. Hood's action and he engaged Stearns Fisher, an engineer 
empioj-ed on the canal, to plat a town immediately east of Holman's. 

Prior to that time the two men had been good friends. Now they 
became bitter enemies. Violent words passed between them on several 
occasions and the quarrel became a matter of comment for the entire 
population. Hood went ahead with his project, however, and although 
Miamisport had the start of his town by five years he was not dis- 
mayed. In the survey of the town site Dr. James T. Liston and Walter 
D. Nesbit carried the chain and drove the stakes. An old document 
descriptive of the work of the surveyor and his assistants says: "When 
Peru was laid out the site was entirely covered with heavy timber ajid 
a thick, impenetrable growth of underbrush. Not a rod square was 
cleared, I have frequently heard Mr. Fisher say that the men had to pre- 
cede him and clear away the underbrush so he could get a sight through 
his instrument." 

Truly not a very ciicoui-iigiiig outlook for a town, l^ut Mr. Hood 
was something of a diplomat. When the commissionei's appointed by 
the legislature to locate the county seat of Miami county met at the 
house of John McGregor in June, 1834, he executed a bond, provided 
the county seat should be located at Peru, to donate the public square 
and erect upon it a brick court-house and log jail, with some other 
promises, all of which were fulfilled. He also enlisted the friendship 
and influence of the Miamisport merchants by offering to present them 
lots in Peru, or at least to sell such lots to them at a merely nominal 
figuri'. It is said that some of the best lots on Broadway sold as low 
as fifty dollars. The old saying that "Money talks" was certainly true 
in this instance. Peru secured the county seat. 

Although the sessions of the county commissioners' court continued 
to be held at .Miamisport until .May, 1835, it was evident that the town's 
hopes of future greatness were forever blasted. On June 9, 1841, the 

158 HISTORY OF :mia:\ii county 

plat was vacated by the eouiity eoraraissioners upon Ihe roiiuest of the 
residents, thoiigh in time the limits of Peru grew out to and beyond the 
old plat, which now forms part of the city with the boundaries above 
noted. No doubt the failure of his cherished project had great influence 
in causing Mr. Holman to leave the county a few j-ears after he lost 
his fight for the county seat. 

In the meantime, .soon after Peru was platted, Mr. Hood sold one- 
third of his land to Richard L. Britton and another one-third to Jesse 
L. Williams, the consideration in each ease being $3,000. Hritton was 
a man of considerable wealth and Williams was one of the leading civil 
engineers of the west. The deeds of conveyance were dated July 26, 
18-34. About that time contracts were let for the construction of por- 
tions of the canal, extending it still farther to the westward, and for 
the building of the dam and locks at Peru. The tlirce proprietors 
took advantage of the situation to advertise their first sale of lots. 
Buyers came from great distances, the lots sold readily, those fronting 
on the canal commanding the highest prices. Among those who came 
in al)out this time were Daniel R. Bearss, Albert Cole, James B. Pul- 
wiler, Alexander Wilson and C. R. Tracy, all of whom became more or 
less prominently identified with the liusiness interests of the new town. 
Daniel R. was born in Liviug.ston county. New York. August 
23, 1809, and was therefore twenty-five years of age when he settled in 
Peru in August, 1834. His grandfather served under Wa.shington in 
the Revolutionary war and his father in the War of 1812. He was 
reared on a farm and educated in the Ing school house. In 1828 he went 
to Fort Wayne, where he entered the employ of W. G. & G. W. Ewing, 
who at that time were extensively engaged in the Indian trade. Soon 
after Mr. Bearss joined them they opened a branch store or trading 
house in Logansport, wliere he was employed until 18:i2. lie then 
severed his connection with the Ewings and embarked in tlie mercantile 
business on his own account at Goshen, Indiana, where he contiiuied for 
about two years. In January, 1834, he married Miss Ennna A., daugh- 
ter of Judge Albert Cole, and the following August came to Peru as 
already stated. He paid $150 for the lot at the northeast corner of 
Third street and Broadway, where the Bearss hotel now stands, and 
formed a partnership with his father-in-law for the purpose of carrying 
on a general merchandising business. This association lasted Init about 
one year, but Mr. Bearss continued the business until 1844. when he 
formed a partnership with Charles Spencer, under the firm name of 
Bearss & Spencer. Five years later he retired from mercantile life and 
devoted his time and attention to looking after his large property 
interests. Besides tlie hotel lie owned several business blocks and a 


luimher of good I'Mrnis in ]\Iiaini county. 'Slv. Bearss was always inter- 
ested in political niatters. lie was an enthusiastic supporter of Henry 
Clay for the presidency and was one of the founders of the Kepub- 
liean jiarly in Miami county. He served three terms in the state sen- 
ate and two in the house, and held other local offices. He took a k(!on 
interest in the movement to bring railroads to I'eru and was a direetor 
of both the Indianapolis, Peru & Chicago and Wabash roads. Early 
in the year 1884 he went to Hot Springs, Arkansas, hopinji- to improve 
his health, and died there on .\i)ril 18th of that year. 

Albert Cole, for more than foi'ty years intimately connected w-ith the 
business interests and political fortunes of Peru, was born at Berlin, 
Connecticut. ^May 1:1 1790. After the death of his father in 1801, he 
lived with his older l)rothei', a farinei'. attending the district schools 
during the winter seasons, and later learned the trades of tanner and 
shoemaker. In 1813 he started west and arrived at Cincinnati in the 
fall of that year, but soon afterward returned to his native state. In 
September, 1814, he married ^fiss Mary Calpin and again started for 
the west. He located at Zanesville, Ohio, where he was engaged in 
farming, tanning and shoemaking until 1833, when he removed to 
Goshen, Indiana. In July. 1834, he located in Peru and for about a 
year was in partnership with his son-in-law, Daniel R. Hearss, in the 
mercantile line. When the fii'ui dissolved. ]Mr. Cole took his share of 
the goods to Lewisburg, where he continued in merchandising for another 
year, at the end of which time he returned to Peru. In 1840 he was 
elected one of the associate judges of Miami county and from 1848 to 
1851 was postmaster at Peru. He also served as United States com- 
missioner under President William H. Harrison for the distribution of 
the surplus revenue. He died in November, 1878. 

James B. Fulwiler, another prominent Peru pioneer, was born in 
Perry county, Penn.sylvania, September 6, 1812. He received an aca- 
demic education in his lujtive state and in 1834 came to Peru with a 
stock of merchandise for Samuel Pike. On March 7, 1837. he married 
Jliss Pauline, daughter of Francis Avaline, of Fort W^ayne, and the next 
year, at the solicitation of his friends, he was a candidate fo'r representa- 
tive in the state legislature from the district composed of Fulton and 
Miami counties, but owing to his views with regard to the state system 
of internal improvements he was defeated. From 1848 to 1855 he was 
clerk of Miami county and in 1860 was a delegate to the Baltimore con- 
vention which nominated Stephen A. Douglas for the presidencj'. When 
he came to Peru in 1834 he established his store on the noi'thwest corner 
of Broadway and Thirtl streets and he continued to be identified with 
business enterprises in Peru until some years before his death, when 


he I'etired, though lie afterward served several terms as justice of the 
peace. Three of his sous became promiueut in railroad circles and 
another son, Louis B., was at one tiiue editor of the Miami County 

Stephens' History of Miami County (p. 179), says: "Some one of 
the surveying party asked Hood what he was going to call his town, 
and he replied that he didn't care, so it was a short name. A number 
of names were suggested and they finally agreed to call the new town 
Peru." This is the onlj' story the writer has been able to find explain- 
ing how the town received its name, and it is probably coi-rect. 

Shortly after the plat was completed Dr. James T. Liston Iniilt a 
large, double, hewed-log house on the corner of Cass and Second streets, 
which was the first building erected on the original plat. Before the 
close of the year 1834 several other residences and a few business 
houses had been built and the future city of Peru was started upon 
its career. During the year 1835 a number of dwellings and a few more 
business rooms were built, but the year 1837 marked the gi'catest pros- 
perity experienced by Peru in the first decade of its existence. In that 
year the canal was finished and opened for traffic between Peru and 
Fort Wayne, the dam in the Wabash river and feeder to the canal were 
completed, the first newspaper was established, large mills were con- 
structed, and began operations in the fall, the town boasted three taverns, 
seven dry-goods and one grocery store, three physicians, a collegiate 
institute, a number of tradesmen, saddlers, carpenters, shoemakers, 
blacksmiths, etc., and a population estimated at five hundred inhab- 
itants. , 

On March 26, 18-12, a mass meeting of voters was held to consider 
the question of incorporating the town. Joseph L. Reyburn was chosen 
to preside and James M. DeFrees was elected clerk. After a thorough 
disciLssion of the subject, a town government was formed in accordance 
with the provisions of "An act providing for the incorporation of 
towns,"' approved February 17. 1838. Peru was then divided into five 
districts, in each of which was elected a trustee. The first board of 
trustees was composed of John Low. Samuel Glass. Joseph L. Rey- 
burn, John Coulter and Isaac Robertson. On April 2, 1842, these 
trustees met and organized by the election of Joseph L. Reyburn 
president, and James M. DeFrees town clerk. At a subsequent meeting 
William R. ilowbray was elected treasurer; Samuel Hurst, lister; and 
John H. Griggs, marshal. Twelve ordinances were passed by the board 
at- the meetings of April 5 and IT. 1842, viz.: 1. Providing for the 
assessment of property ; 2. Levying a tax of twelve cents on the $100 ; 
3. For licensing groceries and coffee houses : 4. Estalilishing the width 


of .siili'walks : "). Providiiiir for tin- |)iiiiislniu'iit ol' iiiisdniiriinors — \mv- 
ticuhirly specil'ying refusal to assist an ofticfi- in tile ilisciiarfie of liis 
duty, driving upon or obstructing the sidewalk, and running or racing 
horses upon the streets; 6. Regulating shows and exhibitions; 7. For 
tile removal of nuisances; 8. For preventing shooting witliin the eor- 
])orate limits of the town: !). Allowing taxpayers to work out the 
amount of their taxes; 10. Regulating the marshal's duties and fees; 

11. Amending the ordinance licensing groceries and colTcc houses: 

12. Requiring the treasurer to give bond. 

Xo record can be found of any other meeting of tiiis board until 
March 2'), 1843, when a meeting of the board and citizens generally 
was assembled "to provide measures for the purpose of arresting rav- 
ages by fire." The citizens voted to require the board to levy and col- 
lect a tax to provide hooks and ladders, and resolved: "That we will 
use our influence to sustain the board in enforcing all the laws hereto- 
fore enacted for the regiilation and government of the town." 

Two days later (March 27, 1843). the board levied a tax of twenty 
cents on the $100 and pas.sed an ordinance providing for the purchase of 
live ladders twenty-four feet long; five, fourteen feet long; five roof 
ladders, fifteen feet long; three fire hooks, with poles not less than 
twenty-two feet long, "all to be painted with Venetian red." Bids 
for liuse ladders were opened at a meeting on April 18, 1843, and the 
contract to furnish them was awarded to Alexander Porter for $52.00. 

At an election held on May 1, 1843, the following trustees were 
elected: First district, John Lowe; Second district, G. S. Fenimore; 
Third district, J. L. Reyburn ; Fourth district, Jacob Fallis: Fifth dis- 
trict, Samuel Hunt. A week later the lU'w board met and organized by 
the election of John Lowe as president. On June 5, 1843, the board 
had another meeting and accepted the ladders from Mr. Porter, and 
passed the following ordinance relating to their distribution, with a 
penalty for violation of any of its provisions: 

"Re it, and it is hereby, ordained by the president and trustees of 
the town of Peru, that each Trustee be, and he is hereby, required to 
take three of the corporation ladders and place them in the most suit- 
able place in his district, and that one hook be placed in the second 
district, one in the third and one in the fifth." 

This appears to have been the last meeting of the board of trustees 
under the first town government. On January 11, 1848, a petition, 
signed by a number of citizens of Peru, praying for the incorporation 
of the town, was presented to the house of representatives of the In- 
diana legislature, then in session. Alphonso A. Cole was at that time 
the member for Miami county. The petition w^as referred to a select 
committee, consisting of Messrs. Cole, Hamilton and Trimbly, which 

Vol. 1—11 


reported back the same day a bill for tlie inporporation of tlie town. 
It passed the senate on February 3, 1848, and Mas duly approved by 
the governor. The bill named as couneilmeu Jaeob Fallis, Albert Cole, 
James IM. DeFrees, George W. Goodrich and Edward H. Bruce, who 
were to hold until the first election, which was required to be held 
within one month after the taking effect of the act. On March 1, 1848, 
the council named by the legislature met and elected Albert Cole 
mayor; Ira Mendenliall, recorder; and C. R. Tracy, treasurer. 

The first town election was held on ^larch 13, 1848, when William 
A. McGregor was elected mayor. On April 7, 1848, the council levied 
a tax of fifteen cents on each $100 worth of property for town pur- 
poses. The net amount of revenue derived from this source during 
the first year was $258.96, to which was added $36.00 received from 
shows and exhibitions, and $45.75 as license fees of taverns and gro- 
ceries, making the total receipts for the first year of the new town gov- 
ernment $341.79. The balance in the treasury at the close of the year 
in March, 1849. was $221.17. Think of tliat 1 In these days, when so 
much is being said aboiit an "economical administration of govern- 
ment," it may be refreshing to note that the disbursements in Peru 
during the first year after its incorporation by the legislature were only 
a little over one-third of the receipts. The second year the expenditures 
were somewhat heavier, as the grade of Broadway was established by 
Solomon Holman in 1848 and the next year the grade was made, involv- 
ing a till of two feet or more at points below ^lain street, at a cost of 
$387.59. In 1851 a portion of Broadway was graveled, the first im- 
proved street in the town. 

The question as to whether hogs should be allowed to run at large 
seems to have been a "paramount issue" in the early history of Peru. 
Says Graham: "For nearly two years the legal learning, the broad 
statesmanship and the burning eloquence of our city fathers boiled and 
seethed around the question of hogs, to impound them or let them run. 
Ordinance after ordinance was framed, but there always seemed a 
crack through which a pig could crawl. ' ' 

In the records of the town under date of April 26, 1850, is found 
the following entry: "Comes now Oliver Dyer, marshal, and reports 
the sale of 52 hogs impounded by him, to wit : 

"42 sold at one cent per head $0.42 

6 sold at three cents per head 0.18 

3 sold at two cents per head 0.06 

1 sold for 1.14 

Total $1.80 


"Comes now tlie said Oliver Dyer ami presents a elaim to the mayor 
and couneil for impounding, advertising and feeding fifty-two hogs, 
amounting to $2!».2r), witli a eredit tliereon of ij^LSO, being the amount 
realized from the sale of said hogs." 

The marshal's elaim was refernnl to a committee consisting of Hig- 
gins. Shutz and Ilaekley. wliieh committee latter reported adversely, on 
legal grounds, and added; "Certaiidy not, when from the best infor- 
mation they are enabled to obtain, the i)roceedings were conducted with 
a special view to running up an ac-count over and above the proceeds 
of the sale had under them." 

At the same meeting at which the marshal's bill was presented 
Coleman ITenton came forward with a petition, "numerously sigue<l 
by citizens of the corporation," prayitig for the repeal of the "hog law." 
Four remonstrances were also presented and both petitions and remon- 
strances were referred to a committee of three — Higgins, Adkinson 
and Brown — which reported the following ordinance : 

"Be it ordained by the mayor and common couneil of the town of 
Peru, that the ordinance entitled 'An ordinance to restrain swine from 
running at large within the corporation of the town of Peru' and all 
ordinances amendatory thereto, as also all ordinances or parts of ordi- 
nances lending in any maimer to restrain swine from the enjoyment 
of the lai'gest liberty, be and the same are hereby repealed." 

This oi'dinanee seems to have ended the whole matter and taken 
the "hog out of polities," as no further reference to the subject can be 
fotuid in any early history- of the town. Some years later — the exact 
date is uncertain — the liberty of the hog was again curtailed, l)nt 
the festive cow was allowed to run at large upon tlie streets until about 
1891 or 1892, when the council, after nuich discussion, which at times 
grew acrimonious, passed an ordinance prohibiting live stock of any 
kind from I'unning at large within the corporate limits of the city. 

The town government established under the act of 1848 lasted for 
nearly nineteen years. An (dection was ordered for February 18, 1867, 
at which the voters should express themselves for or against the incor- 
poration of Peru as a city. The result of that election was 350 votes in 
favor of the proposition and only thirty-seven against it. After the 
election certain provisions were complied with, and on February 25, 
1867, the city was duly incorporated, with four wards, and a city 
election ordered for March 11, 1867. At that election Orris Hlake was 
elected mayor; Ira B. Myers, clerk; William F. TTauk, treasurer: John 
C. Owens, mar.shal and street commissioner; Maitin Swauger, assessor; 
James M. Brown, city civil engineer; Ootlieb Conradt and Jacob Weist, 
coiuicilmen for the First ward; R. P. Effinger and Alpha Buckley, for 



the Second ward ; William Deiiiston and Samuel W. Ream, for the Third 
ward: Henry Deibert and Eli J. Jameson, for the Fourth ward; James 
B. Fulwiler, Henry Button and James T. Heutou, school trustees. 

Mayor Blake took the oath of office on ilarch 15, 1867, and served 
until the first regular election the following ^lay, when he was succeeded 
by Josiah Farrar. At the May election Lincoln P. Pond and Henry 
Stanley were elected assessors; W. B. Loughridge, city attorney, and 
the other officers elected in ilarch were all reelected, with the exception 
of Henry Deibert, councilman from the Fourth ward, who was suc- 
ceeded by Josiah Felix. John C. Owens resigned the office of marshal 
and street commissioner on July 2, 1867, and Isaac Burnett was ap- 

Broadav.vy in the Sixties 

pointed to the vacancy. After a week's service he also resigned and 
the office was filled by the appointment of Thomas J. IMcDowell. The 
city government of Peru was now permanentl.v established. 

Additions to Peru 

Soon after the town was laid out in 1834 some additions were made 
by the proprietors, but these additions became a part of the original 
plat. Just east of the town was the reservation of Francis Godfroy, 
granted to him by the treaty of 1826. By the provisions of his will, 
a full account of which is given in another chapter, a portion of this 
reservation was to be laid off into town lots, within three months after 


liis (U'cciisc, as ;in aiMitinn to tlic town of Pern. Pursuant to tlic pro- 
visions of the old chiefs will, Allen Hamilton, executor of the estate, 
tiled a plat of '•(lodfroy's addition to Peru" in June, 1840. This was 
the first and is the largest addition ever made to the city. 

In 1842 Ewing's addition east of Broadway and inniiediately north 
of the original plat was laid out. It contains thirty-nine lots on each 
side of Ewing street — which runs east from Broadway to Clay street 
— or seventy-eight lots in all. Hood's addition of six squares, hounded 
by Main, Canal. Hood and LaFayette streets, was laid out in 1849. 
E. H. Shirk platted a portion of the old Hood farm in 1863 and added 
it to the city. This addition is bounded by Main. Eighth, Hood and 
Grant streets. The following year E wing's i)artition addition of sixty- 
four lots, situated north of Fifth street and extending from Broadway 
to Hood streets, was laid out and became part of Peru. Brownell's 
addition of 147 lots, bounded by Main. Union and Forest streets and the 
railroad was platted in 1866. Shirk's second addition was made in 
1868. and in 1869 Smith's addition, bounded by LaFayette, Eighth, 
Hood and the railroad was made to the city. Two additions were 
platted in 1870. viz.: Dukes' addition from Grant street to the old 
Logansport road and from Seventh street to the railroad, and Smith's 
second addition north of the railroad and east of Grant street. In 
1871 Sterne's addition, running two squares west from Grant street 
between Main and Seventh streets, and Shirk's third addition, bounded 
by Seventh. Fremont, Eighth and Hood streets, were platted and an- 
nexed to the city. Dukes' second addition, west of Grant street and 
noi'tli of Boulevard, and Smith's third addition, east of Godfroy's and 
extending from Canal street noi'th to the railroad, were laid out in 
1S72. Brownell's addition between Union and Walnut streets w-as also 
made to the city in this year. 

During the next ten years several subdivisions of former jilats were 
made and recorded and a few new additions were made to the city. 
Among the latter are Runyan's and Darrow's additions in 1873; Bous- 
log's addition on East Eighth street in 1880; and Farrar's addition 
between Third and Main streets, east of Grant, in 1881. From that 
time to the beginning of the present century the princi])nl additions 
recorded and annexed to the city are as follows: Shirk & Edwards' 
addition known as East Peru in 1887; Beck, Reilly & Faust's addition 
in 1887; A. N. Dukes' North Peru addition of 214 lots, east of the Chili 
pike and north of the railroad, in 1890; Bouslog's Elmwood addition, 
east of the Lake Erie & Western Railroad and north of Godfroy's addi- 
tion, in 1890; Levi & Falk's addition, situated between Canal, Main, 
Smith and Lincoln streets, in 1891 ; Brownell's north addition, a sub- 


division of outlot No. 11 in Uodfro\''s addition, in 1S[)1 ; Stutesmau's 
addition, north of Boulevard and west of the Mexico pike, in 1892 ; and 
a revised plat of Brownell's addition from Canal street to one tier of 
lots north of Main street and extending from Holman to Forest was 
recorded in 1895. 

The most important addition to the city since 1900 is unquestionably 
that of Oakdale, consisting of 1,058 lots, the plat of which was filed 
on Janu;iry 27, 1906, by the Oakdale Improvement Compan.y. A full 
account of this addition and the manner in which its lots were placed 
on the market will lie found in Chapter XIII of this work. On March 
28, 1901, the city council passed an ordinance annexing to the city all 
the ad.ioining acKlitions except Ridgeview and South Peru, both of 
which were incorporated as independent towns. 

Fire Department 

Mention has already been made of the "red ladders" ordered by the 
board of trustees on March 27, 1813, whicji was the first attempt to 
estalilish anything like a fire protection in the town of Peru. Although 
an ordinance was passed providing that the trustees should keep the 
ladders in the "most suitable place," they were usually left at the scene 
of the fire where they were last used, and when another fire occurred 
there was some difficulty in locating the fire department. Shortly after 
the incorporation of 1848 the marshal was instructed to ascertain the 
whereabouts of the hooks and ladders and provide for their safekeeping. 

Early in the year 1860 a petition of citizens was presented to the 
council, asking that body to appoint F. S. Hackley as agent to visit 
several cities and investigate their fire departments with a view of 
establisliing a department in Peru. In May, 1860, the council authorized 
the erection of a fire engine house, at a of $1,100 and purchased a 
hand fire engine, with the necessary hose, etc., which cost alwut $2,300. 
A volunteer force was organized to man tlie engine at fires and tlie 
annual cost of tliis dejiartment during the next twelve years was about 
sixty dollars. 

In Xovember, 1872, the council passed an ordinance for the reorgan- 
ization of the fire department and a new engine was purchased. A 
more thorough organization was effected under the ordinance of July, 
1888. which jn'ovided for a cliii'f, two assistants, one hose company of 
sixteen men and a hook and ladder company of eight men. The same 
year the fire department building on Xorth iliami street was erected 
at a cost of some $3,200. By tlie ordinance of October 23, 1888, a fire 
limit was established, extending from the south lioundarv line of the 


city aloug the west side of Wabash street to Eighth street, thence along 
the west side of Showana street to the north lioundary line of the cor- 
poration, thence along the northern boundary to the northwest corner of 
Lot No. 64, Ewing's partition addition, thence southward to the east 
line of Miami street, and thence along the east line of Miami street to 
the southi'rn lioundary of the city. Within these limits it was ordained 
that all buildings should have walls of brick and stone, with roofs of 
tin, iron, slate, or some other fire-proof material. 

The first paid department was established in 1889 and on March 
24. 18!)2. the council passed an ordinance providing that the depart- 
ment should "consist of one chief engineer and one regularly organized company, consisting of three men regular and three minute men, 
who shall be reiiuired to sleep at the engine house; and one hook and 
ladder company, consisting of eight men, who shall be received into 
actual service by the common council of said city, and whose pay 
.shall be fixed annually by the common council." 

Late in the year 1912 two automobiles were ordered from a firm 
in Elmira, New York, at a cost of .$15,000. These machines combine 
a chemical engine, a pump with a capacity of five hundred gallons of 
water per minute, and a supply of hose sutficient to extinguish any 
ordinary fire. Prior to the installment of these machines a supply of 
hose was kept at the Indiana Manufacturing Company and another 
at the hospital, but with the advantages of quick transit of fires these 
sub-stations have been discontinued and the entire department is quar- 
tered at the house on Miami street. At the close of the year 1913 the 
department consisted of ten men, under the chieftainship of William 
Murtha. Init at the beginning of the year 1914 two more men were 
added. With twelve disciplined men and the improved fire-fighting 
apparatus it can be said that Peru has as efficient a fire department 
as is usually found in cities of its size. It should also be stated that 
the introduction of the two automobiles did not displace the apparatus 
already in service. The horses, the hook and ladder truck and the 
hose wagon are still available whenever they are needed. 

Water Works 

Tile proposition to establish a municipal water works system for the 
city of Peru first came before tlie council in 1871. At that time public 
sentiment was against the undertaking and no action was taken. On 
March 7, 1873, Governor Hendricks approved an act authorizing cities 
to issue bonds for tiie purpose of building water works and the (pies- 
tion was agitated for a time in Peru, but again no definite action was 



taken on the matter. In 187"), Sliirk. Dukes & Company came forward 
with a proposal to build and equip a water works system adequate to 
the demands of the eity under a franchise, but the council declined to 
grant the franchise and once more the subject was dropped w-ithout any 
results having lieen obtained. 

In July, 1877. a special election was held to ascertain the .senti- 
ment of the voters with regard to the construction of water works, 
those in favo)- 1o vote a tiallot declaring "For Water Works." and 
those opposetl a ballot "Against Water Works." I'pon canvassing 

Water Works Pr.Mi'ixo St.vtion 

the I'etui-ns it was found that the proposition had carried by a vote of 
almost two to one and on April 10. 1878. the council jiassed an ordinance 
authorizing the issue and sab' of water wni-ks lionds. For some reason 
that ordinance was repealed and on June 7. 1878. another was passed 
providing for an issue of bonds amounting to $110,000, due in twenty 
years, with interest at the rate of eight pel- cent per annum. Tlie bonds 
were sold at a slight discount, but soon afterward went to par and later 
to a premium. 

As soon as the proceeds of the bond sale were available the council 
took the necessary steps for the construction of the plant. Contracts 


for (lifl'crmt jioi'tioiis of llic woi'k wcfc let in OctolnT. 1878, and in 
May, 187i), Ihey were coinpleted. A substantial liriek jinnip liouse was 
erected at the corner of AVayiie and Canal streets, in the eastern part of 
the city, where two iimnpiiipj engines run by steam were installed, the 
daily capacity of the pumps beinsi' about 2,500,000 gallons. The reser- 
voir was liuill on the south side of the Wabash river, on an elevation of 
sufficient height to supply a gravity pressure capable of forcing six 
streams of water to a height of fi-om fifty to seventy-five feet. The 
cost of the original plant was •$109,549.!);i 

At first the water works were under the control of a committee of 
three members of the city council, Imt in 1881 the state legislature 
passed an act providing that water woi'ks owned by a municipality 
should ])e controlled by a board of three trustees or directors elected by 
the people. This system prevailed until 1895, when another state law 
placed such works under the control of the city council. The actual 
management of the works is vested in a superintendent and an engineer. 

For tw-enty years the water supply was taken from the Wabash 
river. On April 13. 1900, the council entered into a contract with 
the Shaw-Kendall Engineering Company, of Toledo, Ohio, to drill thir- 
teen wells and install an air lift pumping plant, with a capacity of not 
less than 2,200,000 gallons for each twenty-four hours. The contract 
price of the new equipment was $35,300 and on July 10, 1900, the 
council authorized a loan of $15,000 to complete the payment for the 
new works, which were placed in service early in 1902. Tender the 
new system the quality of the water was gi-eatly improved and the 
result is seen in the increased consumption. The city now has over 
twenty miles of mains and a majority of the people living along these 
mains use the city water. The revenue derived from the water works 
more than pays the expense of operation and repairs, as may be seen 
from the statement of the city finances near the close of this chapter. 

The Gas Works 

In June, 1874, H. E. and C. F. Sterne & Company began the con- 
struction of a gas plant to be operated in connection with the woolen 
mills, of which they were the proprietors. Some three and a half 
miles of mains were laid during the summer and on November 15, 1874, 
the company announced that it was ready to supply illuminating gas. 
A contract was made with the city to light the streets for a period of 
twenty-five years. This was a comparatively small plant, the gasometer 
having a capacity of only about 20,000 cubic feet. The annual con- 
sumption of gas gradually increased and in 1885 amounted to about 
6,000,000 f,-et. 


The Peru-American Gas Company was incorporated in the spring 
of 1886 and on July 27th of that year bought the plant from the orig- 
inal proprietors and gi-eatly enlarged it. ilore mains were laid and 
every inducement was offered to the people to use gas. About that time, 
or a little later, natural gas was discovered south of Peru in Grant 
and Howard counties and was piped to the city, where it was used 
both for heating and lighting, although for the latter purpose it was 
greatly inferior to the manufactured gas. In May, 1895, the natural gas 
pipe lines passed into the hands of the Dietrich syndicate, which con- 
tinued to supply gas until the pressure became too low to force it to the 
city. The natural gas mains then lay idle for a time, when the Dietrich 
interests secured a franchise, constructed an artificial gas plant in the 
western part of the city and liegau the manufacture of gas. About 
1911 the works of the Dietrich syndicate were merged with those of the 
Peru-American Gas Company, under tlie latter name. 

Electric Lwhting Plant 

The iirst electric lights in Peru made their appearance in the fall 
of 1885, when the Thomson-Houston Electric Company installed a 
dynamo with a capacity of twenty-five arc lights as an experiment, tak- 
ing power from Jliller's mill. The following July Volney Q. Irwin, 
of Crawfordsville. purchased thi> plant, with the ground and building 
wiiere it was located on the old canal, near the canal mill. Mr. Irwin 
put in a boiler with a capacity of 212 horse-power, an S5-horse-power 
engine, and two dynamos each capable of supplying current to twenty- 
five lights. Contracts for lighting stores and other buildings were then 
made and in a few years electric lights had largely taken the place of 
gas lights. 

In November. 1894, the Peru Light and Power Company was incor- 
porated with V, Q. Irwin, president ; P. F. Covington, vice-president ; 
Nathaniel Covington, secretary and treasurer. This company tlien took 
over the plant, added another arc light machine and an alternating 
incandescent machine, increasing the capacity to 165 arc lights, and 2.000 
incandescent lights. ^Vitll these additions and some other changes 
electrical engineers pronounced the Peru plant to l)e the eciual of that 
of any other city in the country of similar size. 

A few years later the subject of a municipal lighting plant began 
to be discussed and a large number of Peruvians expressed themselves 
in favor of its estalJishment. On jMarch i:^, 1900. tlie city council 
granted to I^Ieu & Perrott, of Indianapolis, a franchise to build and 
equip an electric lighting works, with the understanding that the city 


woulil i>un-li;isi' tlir siiiiic uiuli'f certain coiulitidiis. Instead of liiiilding 
a new plant. I 'leu & Pcrrott imrdiasi'd the old one, installed some 
new niachinen-. and on Xoveini)ci' 1, 1!)00, it was turned ov(!r to the city. 
There was some eritieisni of the manner in wiiieh this deal was car- 
ried throngh. Tlie franchise of the Peru Light and Power Company 
was about to f.\i)ir(' and that compan.v, after a franchise had been 
granted to tlie Indianajjolis parties, reali/.ed that it would be a difficult 
matter to secure a renewal. It is said the old company sold out to 
I'len & Pen-ott at a sacritice and that the purchasers resold to the city 
at a figure that left them a hanilsome profit. The criticism of the city 
authorities was on account of their having granted a franchise to 
outsidei's. when tlie old plant might have been purchased direct from 
the old company. During the year ]!)i:! the expense of operation and 
upkeep was .$60,428.77 and the receipts amounted to $56,389.28. 
Although these figures indicate that the plant was operated at a loss, 
the i-epairs uuide during the year have placed it in good condition and 
the probabilities are that for the coming years the electric lighting 
works will show a bahince on the riglit sitle of the ledger. 

The Commercial Club 

AVithiii recent years it has become almost a universal custom for 
the business men of a cit.v to organize some sort of an association of 
l)usiness men for the purpose of promoting their common interests and 
adding to the material prosperity of the city. At a meeting in Feb- 
ruary. 1!)01. when the question of raising a bonus for Josiah Turner 
as an inducement to lease and reopen the old woolen mills was under 
consideration, some one proposed the organization of a permanent busi- 
ness men's association. A committee, consisting of Frank M. Stutes- 
man, chairnuin, Ilugli .McCatfrey, Julius Falk, R. H. Bouslog, R. A. 
Edwards. A. X. Dukes, A. L. Bodurtha, C. IT. Brownell and J. D. 
Oates, was appointed to formulate and present plans for siieh an organ- 
ization. Xotliing definite was accomplished until nearly a year later, 
but (in January 17. 1902, a meeting was held which resulted in the 
<)i-ganization of tiie Peru Commercial Club. A nominating committee 
was appointed, wliicli presented the following names as the lirst officers 
of the dull: F. .M. Stutesman, president; R. A. Edwards, vice-presi- 
dent: Xelson W. .Miller, treasurer. The report of the conunittee was 
concurred in and the officers were elected. At a subsequent meeting a 
little later J. (i. Brackinridge was elected secretary. The first executive 
board was comjiosed of Hugh McCaffrey, Henry Meinhardt, G. C. 
Miller, G. xV. Swartwout and A. N. Dukes. Eight standing connnittees 

172 lliSToin' Ol" MIA.Ml COrXTV 

were appointed, caeli oT wliirli was to take charge of some partieular 
phase of the club's work. These committees, with their respective 
chairmen, were as follows: Ways and means, L. B. Fulwiler; manufac- 
turing-, R. H. Bouslog; railroads, C. H. Brownell and C. A. Cole; com- 
merce, A. L. Bodurtha; city interests, James F. Stutesman; press and 
printing, E. L. Miller; membership, C. N. Hall ; arrangements and enter- 
tainments, Frank Carter. 

Since the organization of this club it has been an active factor in 
its efforts tn promote tlie interests of the city of Peru and its people. 
Its work in bringing new manufacturing enterprises to the Oakdale 
addition is described in another chapter: the arrangements for the 
laying of the corner-stone of the new courthouse were made through 
the club; it has been energetic in campaigns to secure bonuses for new 
factories, particularly the Chesapeake & Ohio Railroad shops: has 
offered valuable suggestions and assi.sted in the matter of granting 
franchises to corporations, and while it has sometimes taken the initia- 
tive in these matters it has always worked in harmony with but sub- 
servient to the city administration. 

Following is a list of the club's presidents since the organization, 
the figures in parentheses after the name indicating the number of 
years each served: Frank M. Stutesman (2), Hugh McCaffrey (3), 
A. L. Bodurtha (2), Claude Y. Andrews (2), J. W. Parkhurst (2), 
J. T. Kaufman (1). 

The secretaries, in the order in which they have served, were J. G. 
Brackinridge, Giles W. Smith and Pliny M. Crume. The officers for 
1914 are Hugh ileCaffrey, president: J. W. Parkhurst, vice-president; 
Guy York, secretary ; Henry Kittner, treasurer. 

The club now has an active membership of about 150, though at 
times in the past, when some campaign of more than ordinary interest 
was on, the membership has run as high as three hundred or more. 
This was especially true in the movement to secure a subsidy for the 
Chesapeake & Ohio Railroad shops, when the club worked in unison with 
the city administration and the Improvement and Park Association. 

The City Park 

This park was established through the efforts of the Improvement 
and Park Association in connection with the securing of the Chesa- 
peake & Ohio Railroad shops in Peru. A full account of the manner in 
which the land was purchased by the association and leased to the 
city for park purposes may be found in the chapter on internal improve- 
ments. The park was formally opened on the evening of August 20, 


1908. The ;irriinj;cincnts I'oi- tlic opi'iiiiig were coiiccivcd liy Ilciir\' 
Meiiiluirilt, who ciilislfd llic roopcratioii of Frank M. Stute.siiian and 
these gentlemen aroused enough enthusiasm in the nuitter of obtaining 
supplies, sueh as seats, wiring for tlie eleetrie lights, a hand stand, 
etc.. tliat the peojile responded iihei-alls' with donations, so tliat tlie 
park was eiiuipped witliout expense to tlie eity. Mayor Oduni issued 
a proelaniation rehitiiig to the ojiening and on the eveiung of the 
20th "everybody and his wife" went to tlie pai'k. Tiie Third Regi- 
ment and the Red ^Men's hands fui'nished nuisie, the members donating 
their services for the oeeasion, and the Peru iMaeiinerehor rendered a 
number of voeal selections. Altogether it was an en.joyable evening. 
The pai-k was subse(piently purehasetl by the city and is now one of 
Peru's permanent iustituticnis. 

MuNiciPAi- Improvements 

Shortly after the eonipletion of the waterworks the question of 
sewers came uj) for consideration by the people and the city council. 
The first sewer in the city was built on Cass street and the second on 
Tippecanoe. It is said that these two sewers were constructed through 
the influence of two members of the council who lived on the two streets, 
and that they were put in without regard to a general sewer system. A 
little later a system was planned by Jliehael Iloran, the city civil 
engineer, and the work of building sewers was commenced according 
to that plan. At the close of the year 1913 the city had eleven main 
sewers and tliirty-five laterals, and several new lines wei-e under con- 
templation. The sewer on Broadway is a double sewer, i. e., there is 
a conduit on each side of the street, so that easy access is afforded to 
the buiklings on either side. The work has proceeded gradually, in 
order that the burden of expense might be distributed over a number 
of years. When the system is completed Peru will be as well supplied 
with sewers as any city of its size in the country. 

On July 2, 1901, the city authorities entered into a contract with 
C. Moellering & Company, of Fort Wayne, Indiana, to pave Broadway 
with brick from the Wabash river uoi'th to the railroad tracks, the 
cost of the improvement being nearly .$r)(),000. This was the first paved 
roadway of any kind, except gravel, in the city. The next improvement 
of this character was the paving of Main street from Wabash street west 
to Jliami with brick, which was made a few years after Broadway was 
improved. A few years later a bitulithic roadway was laid in the east 
end of j\lain street, extending to the city limits, and in 1913 this por- 
tion of the street was connected with the brick pavement at Wabash 


street by a bitulithic pavement. West Third street is paved with brick 
from Broadway to Miami street, aud in the winter of 1913-14 an order 
was issued for the pavement of Main street from Miami west to the 
eity limits, the work to be done during the spring and summer of 1914. 
Other improvements are also in contemplation. Most of the sewers and 
paved roadways have been built under what is known as the "Barrett 
Law," which levies the cost of the improvement against the abutting 
property, but gives the property holders ten years in whicJi to pay their 
assessments, improvement bonds being issued at the time tlie work is 
done and made payable in ten annual installments. 

In a few places in the older part of the city there is room for 
improvement in the sidewalks. Init in the main the walks are in good 
condition. In a number of the new additions concrete sidewalks have 
))een laid and this material is rapidly growing in favor in the construc- 
tion of new walks wherever ordered. 

The Postoffice 

When the postoffice was first established at Peru it was called "'^Ic- 
Gregor's" and John IMcGregor was appointed the first postmaster. For 
iiliout three-(|uarttn-s of a century tlie postoffice occupied rented (juarters 
wherever suitalile rooms could l)e obtained, moving from place to place 
as leases expired and property holders required their buildings for 
other uses. In 1909 congress api^ropriated .*t!75,000 for the purchase 
of a site and ei-ection of a jDostoffice building. The lot on the north- 
east corner of Sixth street and Broadway was selected and in March, 
1910, the contract for the erection of the building was awarded to 
P. H. McCormaek & Company, the firm that built the Miami county 
courthouse. On October 17, 1910, the corner-stone was laid. In the 
stone were deposited, among other things, a little book of Peru views 
aud a list of the postmasters from the time the office was established. 
An effort was made by the writer to obtain a copy of that list, but one 
could not be found. Just before the stone was placed in position J\lr. 
MeCormack, the contractor, wrote a few lines on a bill of fare of the 
Bearss hotel and deposited it in the cavity. What he wrote no one 
knows and it will prolialily not be ascertained until the corner-stone 
is removed. Postmaster Loveland says the cost of the site was $15,000 
and that of the building about $78,000. The interior woodwork in the 
postoffice was furnished by the C. H. Brownell Company, of Peru. 
From the little log cabin of 1835, when only a few letters were sent 
and received during an entire year, the receipts of the Peru post- 
office are now approximately $35,000 per annum. The office employs 



twenty-seven people, exclusive of the twelve inral delivery carriers. 
During the fiscal year ending on June 30, 1!)1;5, the office issued 18,655 
domestic and 194 international money orders and during the same 
period paid 10,228 domestic and 17 foreign orders. With the exten- 
sion of the pan-els post the iiunibei' of iiioiiry ordri's is constantly 

U. S. PosTOPFicE, Peru 

increasing and the year ending on June 30, 1914, will show a much 
larger volume of business in this respect than the year preceding. 


On December 31. 1913, the following report was sent to the state 
statistician as an abstract of the inclet)tedness, receipts and disburse- 
ments of the city for the year ending on that date : 

City bonds outstanding. Dee. 31, 1913 $ 41,000.00 

Improvement lionds 18,600.00 

Floating debt 56.115.76 

Warrants outstanding 5,548.70 

Total debt $121,264.46 

In the item of imi)rovement bonds the amount given in merely 
the city's share of such bonds. The large floating debt is due to a 


large extent to the ravages of the great flood of ilai-ch, 1913, which 
did immense damage to the water works pumping station, the electric 
light plant and other public utilities. To place these utilities in work- 
ing condition temporary loans were necessary. 
The receipts for the year were as follows: 

Cash on hand, Jan. 1, 1913 1 13,523.26 

Receipts from city taxes 52,937.13 

Receipts from water works 35,516.26 

Receipts from electric light plant 56,389.28 

Receipts from liquor licenses 7,000.00 

Receipts from licenses and franchises 1.372.50 

Receipts from all other sources 2,953.61 

Total receipts $169,692.04 

In the matter of expenditures the year 1913 was one of the heaviest 
in the city's history. Two new automobile fire engines were purchased 
late in the preceding year, but were paid for in 1913 ; an addition was 
made to the fire engine house on iliami street to provide a place for 
the new apparatus, which made the cost of the fire department far 
above that in normal years; the repairs made necessary by the flood 
and the natural expenses caused the disbursements to outstrip the 
receipts, as shown by the following table : 

Salaries of city officers .-f; 6,577.67 

Health department 1,606.86 

Fire department" 28,205.56 

Police department 7.334.82 

Water works (operation and repairs) 24,788.79 

Electric light plant (operation and repairs) . . 60,428.77 

Paid on bonds 2,000.00 

All other expenditures in 1913 48,182.77 

Total disbursements .$179,125.24 

In the health, fire and police departments the amounts above given 
include the salaries of all persons connected with those departments. 
Wliile the figures taken from this report show a deficit at the end of 
the year of $9,433.20, it must be remembered that 1913 was an extraor- 
dinary year in the destruction of property, which necessitated large 
expenditures in the way of repairs. 


Mayoks of Peru 

Since the establishiiieiit of the city govcriiinoiit in 1867, a period 
of fifty-seven years. Peru had hut ten mayors. Orris Bhike was elected 
at the special election in Mai-cii. 1S()7. anil sri'\-c(l until the regular elec- 
tion in May. when he was sncceeiliMl hy Josiah Kai'rar. William A. 
McOrcgor was elected in l.Sli!) and served until lS7r). when William 
B. itcylnirn was elected. Mr. Kcyliiii'n dic<l on .March '.iO, 1882, and 
John A. (iraham was appointed to fill out the unex])ired term, at the 
close of which he was eR'cted. Mr. Graham served hy reeh-ctions until 
the election of Jesse S. Zern in 1889. Mayor Zern continued in office 
until his death, which occurred in JIa.v, 1896. At the election a few 
(lays jn-ior to his death, he was reelected for another term, hut died 
licforc taking the o;itli of office. The i-ouncil met on the evening of 
Ma.\' 9. 189G, passed resolutions of sympathy ;ind respect, and elected 
Orson Dni'aml mayor for the ensuing term. A few da.vs later a new 
council came into offic-e and elected ('harles A. Parsons mayor, claim- 
ing that the old council had no authority to elect a mayor except for 
the few days remaining of the old term. ilr. Durand refused to vacate, 
however, and the ease was taken to the courts. The supreme court of 
the state finally upheld the old council and Mr. Durand continued to 
serve as mayor until he was succeeded by William A. Oduni in 1902. 
hi liMili .John J. Kreutzer was elected mayor to succeed Mr. Odura 
and served for four years, being succeeded in 191^) by William A. 
Hammond, the present mayor. 


The population of Pern in 1840 — the first United States census 
after the town was laid out — cannot be olitained. In 1850 it was 1,266; 
in 1>6(l it had increased to 2,r)')6 ; in 1870 it was :{.617; in 1880 it was 
.'., iu 18!I0 it was 7.9r)8 : in 19()() it had increased to 10,465, and in 
l!»l(i to 12.365. The census reports of 1890. 1900 and 1910 include the 
liopulation of Ridgeview in the city of Peru. In 1910 the population 
of the city, exclusive of Ridgeview. was 10,910. 

Peru had a police force of eleven men. uiuler the superintendency 
of J. H. Snilitt. at the begiiunng of the year 1914. This is one police- 
iiian for about each 1,100 of the population, but as the people of the 
city are genei'all.v peaceful, law-abiding citizens, this force is sufficient 
to maintain oi'tler and protect life and i)ropei-ty. 

The five public school buildings in the city are valued at more than 
+200,000; all the leading religious denonnnations are represented by 


eomfortnble and commodious houses of worship ; there are a number of 
literary and social clubs ; most of the fraternal societies are represented 
by lodges, and the monthly pay-roll of the various manufactories 
amounts to about $200,000 in normal times. Full accounts of the 
schools, societies and manufacturing' interests will be found in other 
chapters of this work. Three steam railroads and three electric lines 
afford excellent slapping and transportation facilities; the city has 
three daily and two weekly newspapers; the mercantile establishments 
and hotels compare favoralily with those to be found in cities of similar 
size elsewhere; the professions are ably represented, and these things, 
together with the efficient fire department, a bountiful supply of pure 
water for domestic use, a fine public library, the presence of an indus- 
trious, order loving population, all combine to make Peru "no mean 



List of Towns that Are or Have Been in Miami County — When 
Founded and By Whom — The Pioneer Settlers — Early Indus- 
tries AND Business Enterprises — Schools and Churches — Why 
Some Towns Perished — JIiscellaneous Events — Population in 
1910 — List op Present Postoffices. 

In the settlement of the lliddle West there were among the early 
arrivals a numbers of promoters and speculators, who entertained dreams 
of becoming the founders of cities. Through the influence and activity 
of these men, numerous townsites were preempted and towns laid out, 
a few of which survived and grew, many failed to meet the anticipations 
of their projectors, some never got beyond the "pa[)er'' stage, and still 
others perished from inanition in their early infancy. Occasionally, 
some fortunate event, such as the building of a railroad or the location 
of a county seat, would give permanence and stability to one of these 
towns, which in time would develop into a city of more or less promi- 
nence. But in almost every such instance other towns near by would be 
the sufferers and in time would disappear entirely from the map, the 
logic of events being too strong for them to overcome. 

Miami county was no exception to the rule, though it is quite prob- 
able that fewer towns within her borders were projected on a purely 
speculative basis than in some other localities. Examination of old plats 
and atlases show over forty towns, nearly one-half of which are no longer 
in existence. The complete list of these towns and villages includes 
Amboy, Anson, Bennett's Switch, Birmingliam, Browiiell, Bunker Hill, 
Busaco, Caiy, Chili, Converse, Courter, Deedsville, Denver, Doyle, Five 
Corners, Florence, Gilead, Grandview, Hooversburg, Leonda, Loree, 
JIcGrawsville, Macy, Mexico, Miami, Miamisport, Nead, New Santa Fe, 
Nieonza, North (irove. Paw Paw, Peoria, Perrysburg, Peru, Pettysville, 
Pierceburg, Ridgeview, Santa Fe, Snow Hill, South Peru, Stockdale, 
Stringtowii, I'liioii City, ITrbana, Wagoner, Waupecong, Wheatville and 
Wooleytown. The hi.story of the city of Peru — the only city in Miami 
county — is given in the preceding chapter, and below will be found the 



history of the various towns and villages in the above list, though in the 
case of some of those that are no longer in existence, it has been found 
impossible to secure enough information concerning them to give a eom- 
prelieusive account of their career. 


The Pan Handle Railroad was completed through Miami county in 
1867. In August of that year John Ptomey, Bennett Fellows, John A. 
Lamb and Abi.jah Ridgeway laid out the tonii of Amboy on section 23, 
four miles west of Converse, as a station on the new railroad. About the 
time the town was laid out, Elisha Clark established a large steam saw- 
mill there and a little later the firm of Lowder & Smith put up a second 
savraiill. Both these mills did a good business while the timber lasted, 
and large quantities of lumber were sliipped from Amboy during the 
early years of its existence. About the mills a village soon grew up and 
other lines of business were introduced. The first merchant was Ben- 
jamin Bond, who opened a store in the late summer of 1867, at the corner 
of ilain and Pennsylvania streets. A little later a two-story building 
was erected on the opposite corner and there J. F. Overman opened his 
store, but two years later removed to the town of Miami. The third mer- 
chant was William Patterson. Lowder & Smith erected a grist mill in 
connection with their lumber business, and William Reynolds built a 
planing mill before the end of the year 1867. 

The first physician to locate in the town was Dr. J. A. Baldwin, who 
began practice there in the fall of 1868. After him came Dr. H. D. Ilat- 
tery. Dr. John Wright and Dr. E. K. Friermood. Some of these doctors 
remained but a short time. Dr. I.saac Carey was also one of the early 
practitioners at Amboy. 

In November. 1871, B. B. Lamb laid out an addition to the original 
plat and not long afterward a second addition was platted by E. C. Fel- 
lows. Reynolds' addition to the town was made in August, 1875. These 
additions were soon settled upon and improved and in 1881 the town 
of Amboy was incoiporated. 

The first schoolhouse was a two-story building, with two large school 
rooms, which was erected in 1872 by public donations at a cost of $3,300 
and was known as the Aeademj-. Subsequentl}' it was leased to the 
authorities of Jackson to\\iiship for a graded school. A few years later 
the township erected a second school building, in the same section of the 
town, at a cost of .$1,500. It was not long until the demand for better 
school accommodations resulted in the sale of both the old buildings and 
the erection of a new one, at a cost of over $25,000. During the school 


yuar of 1912-13 seven teachers were employed iu the Amboy schools, 
three of them in tlie eommissioned high school department, and the 
amount paid in salaries was $4,100. 

Amboy has two banks with a combined capital of $23,500 and deposits 
of about $150,000. The town also has a local or Home Telephone Com- 
pany, a large canning factory, a creamery, a flour mill, a lumber yard 
and a score or more of well stocked mercantile establishments. In 1910 
the population was 521, an increase of 119 since the census of 1900. It 
is one of the live towns of iliami county and is the principal trading 
center and sliipping point for a large and rich agricultural district in 
the western part of Jackson and the eastern part of Harrison townships. 


In May, 1853, Thomas Jameson, Eli Freestone, Michael Taylor and 
Beu.iamin Griffith laid out the town of Anson at the junction of sec- 
tions 14, 15, 22 antl 23, about a mile east of the present town of Denver, 
in tile western part of Kichlanti township. At that time the Cincinnati 
Peru & Chicago Railroad was being surveyed through the northern part 
of the county, and the founders of this town hoped that it would be on 
the line of the new railroad. When the Indianapolis, Peru & Chicago 
Railroad passed farther to the west the plat of Anson was vacated, hence 
it never got beyond the paper stage. 

Bennett's Switch 

Shortly after the completion of the Lake Erie & Western Railroad, 
the people living in the southern part of Deer Creek township asked that 
a station be established for their accommodation. Accordingly Bennett's 
Switch was laid out on a tract of land belonging to Baldwin M. Bennett, 
of New York, afU^r whom the village was named. A few years ago the 
Indiana Union Traction Company extended its line from Indianapolis 
to Peru, pa.ssing through the village of Bennett's Switch, which wa.s 
made a station on that line also. The town has never grown to very 
large proportions, the last United States census giving the population as 
133. It has two general stores, a grain elevator operated by James M. 
Coucher, and some other business concerns, and does considerable ship- 


This town was once a small station on the Lake Erie & Western Rail- 
road in the southern part of Allen township. It was laid out by Isaac 

Caulk and Solomon Jones in November, 18f)8, the original plat embrac- 


ing 122 lots. Soon after the town was laid out a steam sawmill was 
built and for several years lumber was the chief article of export. At 
one time Birmingham boasted a flour mill, a blacksmith shop and a 
general store, in addition to the saw-mill, but these concerns have all 
moved to more favorable localities. The town was projected solely for 
speculative purposes and it failed to come up to the expectations of its 
founders. ^Vith the general decline of business, trains quit stopping 
there, and all that is left are a few residences and the schoolhouse. The 
reason given for the abandonment of liirmingham by the railroad com- 
pany is a tribute to the strong convictions of Mr. Caulk, who was the 
railroad agent at that time. He refused to sell tickets for Sunday excur- 
sions or to post bills adyertising such excur.sions, and inasmuch as the 
station did not suppl.y the company with a great deal of business, it 
was decided to close it — not only on Sunday, but for all the time. 


A recent map of Miami county, published by Rand, McXally & Com- 
pany, shows a small hamlet called Bi'ownell in the southern part of Sec- 
tion 1, in the northeast corner of Peru township. The same authority 
gives the population as 12, accompanied by the statement that these few 
people receive mail by rural delivery from Peru. Browiiell is a stopping 
point on the "Winona Interurban railway that runs from Peru to "War- 
saw, but it has no business interests of any consequence. 

Bunker Hill 

-Just south of Pipe Creek, in the southeast corner of Pipe Creek 
township, lies the town of Bunker Hill. It was platted 1851 liy Alex- 
ander Galbraith, James Myers and John Duckwall. The original plat 
included 46 lots and in June, 1852, Mr. Duckwall platted an addition 
of 24 lots. James Myers, one of the proprietors, built the first house 
in the town in 1851 and the second was probably the dwelling of Andrew 
Bache, which w-as built later in the same year. For a time the growth 
of the town was rather slow, only ten or a dozen houses having been 
erected in 1858. In 1859 the postofifice was established at Bunker Hill 
and aliout the same time, perhaps a little earlier. Dr. Hubbard opened 
the first store. The store of Ewing & Howard was opened in 1861, at the 
corner of Fourth and I\Iain streets. In January, 1868, the Pan Handle 
railroad was completed. As this line crosses the Lake Erie & "Western 
at Bunker Hill, the coming of the new railroad added to the growth 
and prosperity of the town. New additions w-ere laid out south of the 
Pan Handle, the first house in that part of the town having been built 


by Dr. J. A. Meek, in 1S(;(). Siiicf that time at least ten additions have 
been made to Bunker Hill. 

The first physit'ian wa.s Dr. Hubbard, who also was the first mer- 
chant. It is related to liim that lie carried his medicines in a small tin 
pail and that he was never in "too tiig a luii'ry."' on his way to visit 
a patient, to stop long enough to trade Tlu' second physician 
was Dr. J. A. Meek, who located there in the spring of 1858 and con- 
tinued in practice for many years. 

About the close of the Civil war SanuuH Valentine started a tin shop, 
and a little later a man named Lane began business as a cabinetmaker. 
The first hotel was opened in 1868 by George Larimer, near the junction 
of the Lake Erie and Pan ILindle railroads. William Hendricks' saw- 
mill was built about tlie same time. Li 1870 Jasper H. Keyes started a 
newspaper called the Village Netvs, and in 1871 the first hardware store 
was opened by C. T. Miller. During the next five years a number of new 
business houses were established in Bunker Hill. An election was held 
on October 21, 1882, to vote on the question of incorporating the town. 
At that election eighty-four voted in favor of the incorporation and 
thirty seven against it. The county commissioners canvassed the result 
of the election on November fi, 1882, and the same day ordered the 
incorporation of Bunker Hill. 

The town was divided into three election districts and the first 
election of town officers occurred on November 15, 1882. Robert C. 
Foor, n. P. McDowell and Cyrus Baker were chosen trustees; J. A. 
Meek, clerk and treasurer; ^Villiam Jones, marshal; and John Bazner 
was appointed the first street commissioner. 

A Baptist church was organized here some years before the town 
was laid out; a Methodist church was also organized at an early date; 
the Evaneglical church had its beginning about 1859, the Catholic church 
was organized in 1874. All these denominations have comfortable houses 
of worship, except the Catholics, which parish has been discontinued. 

A two-story brick school house was built in 1868, and subsequently 
an addition of two rooms was added. This building remained in use 
until about 1895, when the school board decided to erect a new one. 
Boiuls to the amount of !};7,000 were issued by the board and the new 
building — a two-story brick, 55 feet square — was erected by the con- 
tractors, Baker & Davis, for $6,740. During the school years of 1912-13 
six teachers were employed in the public schools, three of whom were in 
the high school department, and the amount received by the teachers 
in salaries was $3,364. 

Bunker Hill has a bank with a capital stock of $25,000, a canning 
factory, a number of well stocked stores, the usual fiuota of hotels and 


restaurants found in towns of its size, lodges of several of the leading 
secret orders, and in 1910 reported a population of 668, a gain of 100 
during the preceding decade. In addition to the Lake Erie & Western 
and Pan Handle railroads, a line of the Indiana Union Traction Com- 
pany passes through the town and adds materially to the transporta- 
tion facilties. In point of population, Bunker Hill is the fourth town 
of the county, being exceeded only by the city of Peru and the towns 
of Converse and South Peru. 


Little can be learned of this old town. An old atlas of iliami 
county, published by Kingman Brothers, of Chicago, in 1877, contains 
a map of Indiana, which shows Busaco as a station on the Lake Erie & 
Western Railroad, about a mile north of Denver. It was probably one of 
th- towns projected purely as a speculation and perished without leaving 
a history. 


This old town was located on Honey creek, on the southeast quarter 
of section 22, in Harrison township, and not far from the Jackson town- 
ship line. A congregation of Wesleyan Methodists and also of the 
Friends or Quakers had churches here at an early date, but little can 
be learned of the business enterprises of the town. After the completion 
of the Pan Handle Railroad and the establishment of Amboy, about a 
mile way, Gary sank into insignificance. 


Chili is the only town of importance in Richland township. It was 
laid out by Jesse Mendenhall in October. 1839, and the plat was recorded 
under the name of New Market. The original plat showed twenty-two 
lots and six streets — Broadway, North, Third and South, ranning east 
and west, and Bluff and Lime, running north and south. One of the 
first to locate in the town was Daniel Lander, who built a small store 
and put in a stock of goods. Mr. Lander was the first postmaster at 
Chili and was for many years a justice of the peace. John Belew 
started a harness shop while the village was still in its infancy, and in 
1845, N. C. Hall opened a store in a log house. Dr. W. J. Chamberlain 
located there about ihe same time and was the first physician to practice 
his profession in Chili. 

When the Eel River railroad, now the Vandalia, was completed 
through the county in 1872, the town of Denver sprang up at the cross- 


ing of the Lake Ei'ic & Western, aliout tliree miles west of Chili, whieh 
detracted soniewh;it from tlie jirowth of tlie latter place. In 1886, the 
Peru & Detroit raili-oad was 1)iiilt from Peru to riiili, wliieh offset, to 
some extent, the eompetition otl'cn'd by Denver. This road is now u.sed 
by the Winona Tnteinrhan line, which connects Chili directly with the 
county seat. 

A ^lethodist church was organized about the time the town was 
laid out and subseiiucTitly a Baptist congregation was formed. Both 
have neat ciiurch edifices and are in a prosperous condition. There 
is a graded school here, so that the educational advantages are as good as 
in many towns of greater size. 

In inOO the United States census re])orted Chili a.s having a popula- 
tion of two hundred and forty-five and ten years later it was two hundred 
and seventy-five. The principal business enterprises are the mill and 
two general stores. Chili is a trading center and shipping point for 
a considerable portion of the rich Eel river valley. It has a telephone 
exchange, telegra'ph and express offices, etc. 


When this town was laid out in April, 1<S4!), by O. H. P. Macy and 
Willis Elliott, it was given the name Xenia. The first was erected 
by Henry Overnum the followinji' summer. It was a log structure fifteen 
by eighteen feet .md stood on the Delphi road, now known as iliami 
street. Later an addition was made to the building, in which the first 
stock of goods ever brought to Converse was offered for sale. In order 
to reach the "store, "" customers were compelled to pass through the 
living rooms of Mr. Overnum 's fanuly. James Mote, a carpenter, and 
Joseph Brazington, a cabinet-nuiker, were among the early settlers. The 
former built his residence at the corner of Marion and Jefferson, and 
the latter at the comer of Jefferson and Sycamore streets. In 1852, 
Mr. ]\Iacy, one of the proprietors, erected a building for mercantile pur- 
poses and opened the first general store of conse(|nence in the town. 
This building was altciward occupied for several years by Daniel Men- 
denhall. Other early nu'rchants were John and Quiiicy Baldwin 
Christian Life, Cooper & Scott, John Grimes and Elisha Draper. 

The original plat of Converse embraced a small tract in the northern 
part of section thirty-two and showed thirty-two lots and four streets 
— Jefferson, which runs north and south and is crossed by Wabaish, 
Marion and Sycamore. About a year after the town was laid out all 
these lots had been sold. In ^March, 185(), 0. TI. P. Macy and Thomas 
Addington platted an addition of forty lots. F. i\I. Davis' addition to 


the town, consisting of twnety-nine lots, was made in 1867. and two 
years later J. "\Y. Eward and J. X. Converse each platted additions, the 
aggregate of which was thirty-two lots. Several additions have been 
made since that time as the growth of the town demanded more room. 

Converse, or Xenia. as it wa.s then called, experienced a boom soon 
after the close of the Civil war, when the Pan Handle Railroad was 
built through the town. Then a number of saw-mills were established 
in the immediate vicinity and large quantities of lumber were shipped 
from Converse, scavcel.y a day passing without one or more carloads 
going out to some of the factories in the large cities of the east. E. S. 
Lee established a planing mill and stave factorj' about 1869. A mill for 
making tow from flax was afterward added and the firm of Lee & Pat- 
terson carried on this line of business until the destraction of the mill 
by fire in 1874. A. B. Fisher began the manufacture of staves in 1870 
and a few years later John Coyle started a tow and flax mill. Fisher 
removed his stave factory to Union city about 187.5, and Coyle, after oper- 
ating his flax mill for some time sold out to Lehman, Rosenthal & Kraus, 
of Peru, who removed the mill to that city about 1879 and 1880. Other 
early industries were the flour mill of Wright & McFeely, which changed 
hands a number of times during the first decade of its existence, and 
the tanneiy started by A. -J. Saxton, about 1866. 

In 1873, the aiiditor of Miami county directed the surveyor of the 
county to lay off and plat all the irregular lots in the town so that they 
could be listed for tax purposes in a systematic manner. The survey 
was accordingly made and the plat filed by the county surveyor has since 
been known as the official plat of Converse. 

A second boom came to the town upon the discovery of natural gas 
in the vicinity and a number of new manufacturing concerns located 
at Converse. Among them were the Xenia Hoop Works, the Woolen 
Mills, the Hoosier Canning Company, the Peerless Glass Company, the 
Chandelier Works, a carriage factory and the Malleable Steel Works. 
When the supply of gas failed some of these factories were discontinued 
or removed elsewhere. 

The first hotel in Converse was opened by James ]\Iote and a large 
part of his patronage came from prospectors who visited the new town 
in quest of business opportunities. He was succeeded bj- Clayborne 
Wright and in 1868 a regular hotel building was erected by George 
Wood on Jefferson street, a .short distance soiifh of the railroad. It was 
destroyed by fire in 1884. 

In 1868, Charles P. Thew, a journalist who was not afraid to venture, 
started the Xenia Gazette, an account of which, as well as its successors, 
will be found in the chapter on Educational Development. 


The first school house ereeted for the aeeoinodatioii of tlie chihlren 
of tlie town was built in 186(5. It was a modest frame building and 
stood in the western part of the village. By 1872 it became too small 
to serve the purpose for which it was erected and a two-story brick 
building took its ])lace, at a cost of !|i8,000. Two rooms were afterward 
added to the building and as thus remodeled it was used until about ]8!)C, 
when the persent commodious building was erected at a cost of $25,000. 
In 1894 the superintendent of the town schools made application to 
the state board of education for a commissioned high school and, aftei- 
an investigation as to the condition of the schools, the state board granted 
the commission early in 1895. In the school year of 1912-13, there were 
ten teachers (Mii])loyed in the Converse public schools and they received 
in -salaries $5,021.50. 

A fire department was organized on July 1, 1885, with twenty-two 
mendiers, and those who have witnessed its work assert that it is one 
of the best of its kind in the state of Indiana. Converse also has a well 
equipped system of water works, using both the direct pressure and 
stand (jipe methods. The supply of water comes from tubular wells, over 
two hundred feet in deptii, in which the water has risen to within six 
feet of the surface, affording an abundance of pure limestone water for 
domestic use and fire protection. 

About two years after the town was laid out a class of Wesleyan 
Methodists was organized and a little later a small log church was 
erected. After several years dissensions arose among the memliers and 
the last meeting of the church was held some time in 1870. The United 
Bi-ethi'en church was organized in 1856; the Methodists a year before 
that (late; the Christian church in 1868, and the Presbyterian churcli 
in 1870. A more complete account of these; congregations will be found 
in the chapter devoted to church liistorj\ 

The Converse of the present day commands a large trade from the 
people living in the southeastern part of Miami county, the north- 
western part of (Iraiit ami tln' northeastern part of Howard. It is the 
principal shipping point on the Pan Handle Railroad between Marion 
and iiOgans]>oi-t. Convei-se has ;i bank with a ca[)ital stock of $25,000, 
a Home Telc|)h()ne Company, some manufacturing enterprises, a large 
grain elevator, nioi-e than a score of mercantile establishments, and a 
numbei- of handsome residences. The United States census of 1900 
gave Converse a iiopnlatiDii of one tliousand four liiindrcd iuid liftecn. 
About the time tliat report was issued the supply of natural gas gave 
out and in 1910 the popuhition was officially rejjorled as one tliousand 
one hundi-cd and sixty-four. A It hough these figures show a decrease 
ill the iiiiiiibi'r 111' inhabitants, there has been no dimiiiulioii of energy 


on the part of the people of Converse and- the town holds second place 
in iliarai county, being excelled in population and wealth only liy the 
city of Peru. 

The Miami County Agricultural Association holds its annual fair 
and races at Converse and every autumn it is the Mecca for the people 
of ;Miami county, the citizens of Peru usually turning out in large num- 
bers to this, the only fair in the county. Converse has for a number 
of years suppoi-ted a summer Chautau(iua. which is likewise well 


Six miles north of Peru, on the Lake Erie & Western Railroad, is the 
little handet of Courter. It was laid out in August, 1869. liy R. F. 
Donaldson, on the northeast (juarter of section thirty-four, in Jeffer- 
son townslnp. The original plat consisted of twenty lots and no addi- 
tions to the town have ever been made. At one time there was at 
Courter a general store, a blacksmith shop, a public school, and it was at 
center of trade for a considerable agricultural district. Courter now 
consists of a few dwellings and only one train each way daily stops at 
the .station. The few inhabitants are supplied with mail by rural 
delivery fi-om Peru. 


In June, 1869. the Cincinnati, Chicago & Louisville Railroad, pop- 
ularly known as the " ' Huckelberry Line," was completed through the 
northern part of Miami couny and William Deeds built a warehouse 
on his farm in Union townshij), on tin- line of the new road, for the 
purpose of handling grain and produce. In September following E. H. 
Hill opened a general store near the warehouse. The town was regularly 
laid out July, 1870, by Albert Deeds and Samuel U. Leedy, the original 
plat consisting of eighty-four lots. In December, 1872, -Mi-. Leedy laid 
out on addition of twelve lots and Mr. Deeds afterward made an addi- 
tion of sixteen lots. E. H. Hill was the first postmaster. In 1910 the 
population was one hundred and twelve. Deedsville has several general 
stores, a grain elevator, a creamery, a public school house, a money order 
postofficc, from which one rural route emanates, and does considerable 


The town of Denver was laid out under the supervision of and for 
Harris-nn Grimes in August. 1S72, about the time the Eel River rail- 


road was beiug built tiiroiip:]! Miami roiuity. The- original plat iiieluded 
sixty-five lots in the northeast quarter of section twenty-one, north of 
the Eel River (now the Yandalia > Railroad, and east of the Lake Erie 
& AYcstern. In the development of the town it extended into rnion and 
Richland township, whieh caused some eonfusion with regard to taxes, 
schools, etc., and in response to a petition of the citizens the county 
commissioners changed the township lines so as to throw the town all 
in Jefferson. Among the earliest residents, after the town was laid out, 
were Frank :\Ioody, .\sel Griffith. W. IT. Howe, David and William 
Fetrow, and Jeremiah Johns. The first residence was erected hy Mr. 
Moody, who opened a blacksmith shop, the first industrial concern to 
he established in Denver. TV. W. Fetrow started the first store and 
Mr. Oriffith built a steam saw-mill. fJrimes & Charles opened a general 
store not long after the town was surveyed, and the firm of Constant 
Brothers in ISTfi established a jilaning mill, etpiipped with machinery 
for the manufacture of liarrel hoops and various articles of wooden 
ware. Cloud & Son ei'ected a flour mill in .1880, but about eighteen 
months later .sold out to a stock compan.y. This company in turn sold 
the mill to Amey & Newbold, who refitted it with modern machinery. 

Denver College was founded in 1876, a building was erected and 
school was opened with every indication of success, but aftei- a some- 
what varied career the company was disbanded and the building was 
turned over to the public school authorities. 

In November, 1883, Dr. 0. F. Snook issued the first number of the 
Denver Sun, the fii-st newspaper to be published in the town. An account 
of this newspaper and its successors will be found in the chapter on 
Educational Development. 

Til LS73 the Denvei' I\Iethodist Kpisi'Opal rliuiTli was organized and 
a house of worship was ei'ected the same year. Later the Baptists and 
Seventh Day -Vdventists organized congregations and built church 

The Denver of today has a hank with a capital stock of $10,000, a 
cooperative telephone company, a large basket factory, several good 
mercantile establishments, a money order postoffice with two rural 
delivery routes, a good public school building, and ships large quantities 
of grain and other farm products. Several attempts have Ix'cn made to 
incorporate the town, the last in the winter of 1913-14, but so far all have 
failed of realization. The jiopulation in IHIO was eight luiiidrcd and 


Rand McNally's atlas of Jliaini county shows a liamlet called Doyle 
on the east side of section nine, in Jefferson township, a short distance 


from the southeast corner of the township, ;ind vouchsafes the informa- 
tion tliat the inhabitants receive nuiil 1)y rural delivery from Peru. 
Strictly speaking, Doyle is not a town. It is merely a siding on the 
Lake Erie & "Western Railroad for the accommodation of the adjacent 
farmers in the shipment of live stock, etc. 

Five Corners 

In the southwest corner of Allen township a settlement grew up in 
an early day, which became known as Five Corners, on account of its 
location at the intersection of roads leading in five different directions. 
No town was ever platted there, but the converging roads made it a 
point easy of access and it became the center of trade for a large territory 
in the northwestern part of Miami county, as well as for portions of Cass 
and Fulton counties. About 1857, a large general store was opened at 
Five Comers by the firm of Moses & Williams, who sold out to Nathan 
Shackelford some five or six years later. William Harp succeeded I\Ir. 
Shackelford, but remained only about eighteen months, when he closed 
out his stock. A postoffice was established in 1859, with Nathaniel 
Bryant as postmaster. After the railroad was completed to IMacy the 
postoffice was removed there, trade was diverted to the raih'oad town 
and in a few years all that remained of the old settlement at Five Cor- 
ners was the Methodist church and a few dwellings. 


On October 20, 1849, Alexander Galbraith filed for record a plat 
of a town kno^ni as Florence, located on the southeast quarter of the 
southwest ciuarter of section 29, township 26, range 4, on the north 
bank of Big Pipe creek. This town was situated about half way between 
the present town of Bunker Hill and the old village of Leonda. The plat 
shows sixty-six lots, btit it does not appear that any buildings were ever 
erected in Florence. 


This is one of the old towns of Miami county. It was founded about 
1840, by Adam E. Rhodes, who settled upon the site in 1835. The 
original plat consisted of twenty-nine lots and two squares in sections 
12 and 13 of range 4 and sections 7 and 18 in range 5, a little north- 
west of the center of Perry township. Dr. E. H. Sutton located in the 
village, about the time it was laid out, and practiced his profession 
there for some fifteen years. Among the first residents was a man named 
Swayzee, M'ho opened the first store. William H. Wright started a 


general store in 1845 and Zera SuthcrlMinl lirijiiii in the same line of 
business about a year later. Otlier (>arly intTchants were William D. 
Smith, James T. MeKiiii and 0. P. llohler. Peter Onstatt removed 
his blacksmith shop from liis farm, al)Out two miles and a half south- 
east, and was the first to follow that vocation at Gilead. Samuel Essig 
had established a small tanyard on the site of the village as early as 
1837, and it was one of the primitive industries. Caple Brothers built 
a steam saw-mill in 1868, and A. M. (!rogg and his partner made some 
of the plows used l)y the early farmers of Perry township. Joseph 
Watie was for many years a general merchant. lie sold his store in 1913 
but is still postmaster. 

The Metiiodists organizeil a ehureli at Gilead as t'arly as 18-l:i and 
three years later a Presbyterian congregation was formed. A Masonic 
lodge was organized in ISljd. 

After the completion of the Indianapolis, Peru & Chicago Railroad, 
and the Eel River Railroad, the village of Gilead began to show signs of 
decline. It remained the jjostofifice and trading point, however, for a 
considerable territory in the northeastern part of the county, and upon 
the completion of the Winona Interurban Railway a few years ago the 
village took on the appearance of renewed activity. In 1910 the pop- 
ulation was reported as being one hundred and sixty. The principal busi- 
ness enterprises are the saw-mill and two general stores. Gilead has 
a good i)ulili(' school building and a number of neat homes. 


The old town of Grandview was laid out tty J. ]\I. Dickson and John 
Wilson on June 1, 1854. on sections 7 and 8, township 25, range 5, about 
a mile east of the present village of McGrawsville. The original plat 
.showed fifty lots and was filed for record on August 1, 1854, by Ben- 
jamin F. Shaw. The town never fulfilled the hopes of its founders 
and seems to have perished without leaving any history. 


Situated near the line dividing sections 3 and 10, in the northwest 
corner of Perry township, was the old village of Iloover.sburg, the 
history of which has been ])ractieally lost. About all that can be learned 
of it is that it was named for one of the pioneer families in that part of 
the county and that it was a trading point in an early day. A i)ost- 
office was once located at Ilooversbui'g, but the people in that neighbor- 
hood now receive their mail by rural <leliverv from the office at Wagoner. 



Shortly after the completion of the old Peru & Indianapolis Railroad 
the little town of Leonda, situated about a mile north of the present 
town of Bunker Hill, became one of the principal trading points south 
of the AVabash river. Leonda was projected before the railroad was 
finished, having been laid out by Harvey Hoover and Jacob Pottarff 
in ISol. The original plat showed seventy-two lots, with the railroad 
running directly through the center of the town. Not long after Leonda 
was laid out, Walter P. Shaw opened a general store. Other early 
merchants were Jacob Arnold and Samuel Jones, the latter also con- 
ducting a hotel. A postoffice was established in the early '50s, with 
Joseph Arnold as the first postmaster. Bunker Hill was laid out about 
the same time and spirited rivalry commenced between the two towns. 
When the Pan Handle railroad was built, crossing the Lake Erie & 
Western at Bunker Hill, the postoffice was removed to that town and 
Leonda gradually declined until now it is remebered by only a few of 
the old settlers. 


This village is a station on the Pan Handle Railroad, in the ndrthern 
part of Clay township. The railroad company put in a siding there in 
1888 and soon afterward E. B, Bottorff opened a genei'al store. He 
wa-s succeeded after a time by M. P. Conn. Thomas & Smith established 
a saw-mill at Loree a short time after the siding was built and a post- 
office was located there a little later. In 1910 the population was given 
as thirty . The saw-mill and the general store are the oidy business enter- 


About two and a half miles east of Loree, on the line between Har- 
rison and Clay town.ship, is the little hamlet of jMeCTrawsville, which 
is a station on the Pan Handle Railroad. About two years before the 
railroad was completed to this point, Nelson McGraw built a small 
store — only eight by ten feet — and put in a small stock of goods. When 
the railroad was finished a siding was put in here and the name of 
McGrawsville was given to the place, in honor of the pioneer merchant. 
A church was soon afterward built on the Clay township side of the 
town and a blacksmith shop was opened. D. F. Deisch succeeded Mr. 
McGraw in the mercantile business, enlarged the store and increased 
the size of his stock. The general store is now owned by T. R. Dawson. 


Bfsiili's tliis store a savv-iuill ami the postolKci' ari' tlu' principal attrac- 
tions of MeGrawsville, the population of which in I'JIO was forty. 


In . I line, lS(iO, (icorgc ami Anderson Wilkinson laid nut a plat of 
twenty lots where the town of Macy is now located and gave to the 
place the name of Lincoln. William Cordell soon after i)urchased one 
of the lots, upon which he built a blacksmith .shop, and John Inscho. 
a cai-penter, built the first residence. Before the close of the year George 
Wilkin.son opened a stoi-e. A liltlc later J. W. Ilnrst and A. L. Norris 

Street Scene in Macy 

formcil a partnership and purchased the stock of Mr. Wilkinson. For 
several years the firm of Hurst & Norris was the leading mercantile 
concern of the town. The town grew so rapidly that in 1869 a lai'ge 
addition of eighty lots was made to the original plat by Wilkinson & 
Powell. Louden Carl purchased a lot in this addition and removed 
his store from Five Corners. Alonzo Hudson established the first drug 
store and David Goldsmith the first clothing store. 

A steam saw-mill was started, soon after the town was laid out, by 
J. L. Peek, who later sold an interest to John Garner. The firm of 
Peek & Garner then remodeled the mill and converted it into a Hour 
mill. The first physician was Dr. James McKee, who was soon followed 
by Dr. M. !\L Boggs, and the first hotel was opened by II. C. Ewing. 

Vol. 1—13 


The first, newspaper was estattlished in 1885. by il. L. Enyart. It was 
called the JMacy Monitor and is still in existence. 

The first school house was a frame building in the southwestern part 
of the town. It was built some time in the '70s, and was afterward 
enlarged by having a second story added. In ISSO the township graded 
school building, a Ijrick structure of eight rooms was erected, at a 
cost of something over .$6,000. 

In 1869 the postoffice was removed from Five Corners to Lincoln, 
but it was discovered that there was already a postoffice called "Lincoln" 
in Cass county, and, as the postal regulations prohibited two oilices of the 
same name in the «ame state, the name of ''Allen" was adopted. In 
time this gave rise to confusion, and as goods intended for the town of 
Lincoln, in iliami county were sometimes delivered to Lincoln, in Cass 
county, the people of the town in 1875 petitioned the county commis- 
sioners to change the name to ^Macy, for David 3Iacy, president of the 
Indianapolis. Peru & Chicago Railroad, which was accordingly done, and 
a little later the name of the postoffice was changed to correspond. In 
1884 an election was held to vote on the (luestion of incorporation. 
A ma.iority expressed themselves in favor of the proposition and the 
town of ^Macy was accordingly incorporated. The first board of trustees 
was compo.sed of A. C. Waite, M. Freeland and Jeremiah Hatch. 

A Methodist church was organized in this locality some twelve years 
before the town of Macy was laid out. The Christian church was formed 
in 1868. These two congregations are the principal religious societies 
in the town, though meetings are occasionally held liy other denomina- 

While Macy has never grown to l)e a large town, each succeeding 
census since its establishment has shown a slight increase. In 1010 
the population was three hundred and twenty. The town has a bank 
M-ith a capital stock of $10,000. a local telephone company, several gen- 
eral stores, three hardware and implement stores, a hotel, a weekly 
newspaper, a grain elevator, a money order postoffice with three rural 
routes, telegraph and express offices, lodges of several of the leading 
secret and benevolent organizations, and is the trading center and ship- 
ping point for a large and rich agricultural district in Allen and Perry 
townships. At the beginning of the year 1914, Macy was out of debt 
and had a surjilus of $1,400 in the town treasury. 


Near the center of Jefferson township, beautifully situated on the 
Eel river, is the town of ilexico, one of the oldest towns in Miami 


county. When the first settlers camo into the Eel river valley, one of 
their great needs was a tra(lin<j post of sonic kind. As indneement to 
some adventurous tradrr to luciite in th:it pari of tlie eount.y the town 
of Jlexico was laid out in Au-just, ls:{4, by .John B. and Simeon AVilkin- 
son. The original plat included one hundred and twenty-six lots, which 
would indicate that the proprietors were actuated somcw hat liy a spirit of 
sj)ecnlation. Soon after the town was laid out a trading post was 
established by Bearss & Kwing, who carried on successful business for 
several years. The following year Asa Leonard built a large two-story 
log house and engaged in merchandising at Mexico. Washington 
Osborne was another [)ioneer merchant ; Noah Sinks and John Ilart- 
pcnce also sold goods in the town during its early years, and the firm 
of Train, Mason & Spencer operated a large store in the '50s. 

Other early industries were the tailor shop of Samuel Brown; the 
shops of James ^lason and a man named Leslie, blacksmiths; the wheel- 
right shop of a Mr. Becl, who was also a cabinet maker; the fanning 
mill faetoi-y of Frank Edwards; Joseph Oldham's tannery, and the 
ashery of John Griswold. The first hotel was the River House, which 
was opened by Jacob Wilkinson shortly after the town began to show- 
signs of growth. By 1850 all the original lots were improved and the 
talk of a railroad created some interest in the future of the town, hence 
in August, 1854, the railroad additions of forty-five lots were platted 
and placed on tiie market. Other additions have since been made to 
Mexico, which has succeeded iu "holding its own." 

The ilexieo Methodist church was founded in 1835 ; the German 
Baptist, or Dunkard church was established about two years later; the 
Baptist church was organized in 1861, and other denominations have 
held meetings iu the town at various periods in its histoi-y. 

When the Eel Rivi-r Railroad was built through the county in tiic 
early 'TOs, the town of Mexico experienced a revival. The Mexico J\lan- 
ufacturing Company was incorporated in ^lay, IHTti, for the purpose of 
making furniture, bank and office fixtures, etc. Several new enter- 
prises were pro.iectcd about the same time, some of which are still doing 
business. According to the census of IIJIO, the population of Mexico was 
then five hundred and twenty-one. The town has a good public school 
building, a large woolen mill, established in lftl:{, a bank oi'ganized in 
ll)i:j, and there are several general stores, hardware and implement 
houses, so that Mexico is the su{)ply point for a considerable portion of 
the rich Eel river valley. 


In .Augusl, isll). tile originid plat of ^liaiiii was laid out by James 
Ilerrell and soon after the first house was built 1)V Alexander Blake. 


It was a log structure and was used as a store by the owner, who was 
the first merchant in the village. The first plat included forty-five 
lots and five streets — Fulton and Cherry, running east and west, and 
ilain. Elm and Walnut, running north and south. In the spring of 
1851, ^Villiam H. Cox made an addition of fifty-one lots, and the next 
year Richard Miller and Isaac Herrell platted an addition of seventj'- 
two lots. Austin Herrell opened a store in 18.51 and was closely con- 
nected with the business affairs of the town for more than twenty years. 
In 1870 he built a mill, which he conducted for several years. Another 
mill built about the same time was that of Ebenezer Humrickhouse, 
which was removed to Walton, Indiana, in 1880. The first sawmill was 
built by Alexander Blake, about 1852. A sawmill was in operation here as 
late as about 1894, when it was abandoned by the owners, Pomeroy & 
Keyes, who removed the machinery elsewhere. 

A Methodist church society was organized in this neighborhood 
about the time the village of Miami was laid out, perhaps a little before 
that date, and this congregation built the first house of worship in the 
town. A Masonic lodge was organized in 1851 and an Odd Fellows' 
lodge in 1866. The latter was disbanded some years later. In 1910 the 
population of Miami was reported as three hundred. The principal 
business interests of the town at that time were a tile factory, two 
general stores, a grain elevator, and some minor concerns. Miami has 
a money order postoffice with one rural route, and a bank was organized 
in the summer of 1913. Miami has been noted for more than a quarter 
of a centry for its annual meetings of the Tri-County Old Settlers Asso- 


Xead is a small hamlet in Pipe Creek township. No regular plat 
of the place has ever been filed in the office of the county recorder, but 
the latest maps of Miami county locate it upon the southeast quarter 
of section 12, about one mile north of Big Pipe creek and four miles 
southwest of the city of Peru. Nead has a good public school and a 
general store and the population, according to Rand, McNally, was 
forty in the year 1910. 


An old map of Miami county shows the village of Niconza on the 
southeast quarter of section 15, township 29, range 5, a short dis- 
tance north of Squirrel creek, in the eastern part of Perry township. 
Little can be learned of the place, farther than that it was an early 


trailirifj tliat a iiostofficc was inaintiiiucd there for some time during 
the early histoi'V of I'erry township. 

North Gi«)ve 

The original plat of this town was filed for record on Mareh 16, 
1854, by William North, and was recorded tinder the name of Moore- 
field. It consisted of twenty-nine lots. In the fall of 1867, when the 
Pan Handle railroad was completed to the town, two additions were 
made to the town — Cohnv's, consisting of fifteen lots, and Parks', con- 
sisting of thirteen lots. Aliout that time the name was changed to 
North Grove. The first business house was erected by Abraham Colaw, 
on the corner afterward occupied by the linn of Stitt & Lee, and Solo- 
mon Yonnee opened a blacksmith shoj) soon after the town was laid 

Early in the year 1912 Leonard G. Stitt and a number of other 
residents of North Grove presented a petition to the county commis- 
sioners asking for the incorpoi'ation of the town. On February 6, 
1912, the board issued an order for an election to be held on the 27th 
of the same month, when the citizens living within the territory it 
was proposed to incorporate should vote on the ((uestion. At that 
election fifty-six -votes were cast — thirty -nine in favor of incorporation 
and seventeen against it — and on March 6, 1912, the hoard of commis- 
sioners ordered that North Grove be made an incorporated town. In 
1910 the population of No7'th Grove was reported as three hundred 
and fifty. The town has several stores, particularly the grocery and 
di'Ug store of L. (i. Stitt and the general store of Claude Jones, two 
grain elevators, large lumber interests, a Masonic lodge, a good public 
school building, a money order postoffice with one rural route, and the 
usual number of small shops found in towns of its size. 

Paw P.wv 

About 1840 Richard .Miller established a trading post on the tract 
of land entered by him just north of Bachelor creek, in the eastern part 
of Richland township, A settlement grew up about his store and in 
April, 1847, the town of Paw Paw was regularly platted and recorded. 
Among the early mechanics and industries were James Wright, black- 
smith ; .\lvin Kite and George King, wagon makers; George Brown and 
Lawson Humphreys, cabinet makers; Richard Miller, tannery; a hat 
factory; and a Dr. Jones was the first physician. When the Eel River 
Railroad was built trade was diverted from Paw Paw to other towns 
and it is now one of the deserted villages of Miami county. Paw Paw 


was the home of (he late Hon. Robert Miller, at one time state senator, 
and his son, Rev. S. C. ]\Iiller, still lives in the vicinity. 


Situated on the picturesque Mississinewa river, in the eastern part 
of Butler township, is the old town of Peoria, which was laid out by 
Isaac Litzenberger in October, 184.'). The first house was built by 
•Joseph Younce and the first store was opened l)y ^Mr. Litzenberger, soon 
after he had the plat surveyed. Moses Falk was an early trader here 
and Dr. John C. Helm was the first physician. A postoffice called 
"Reserve" was maintained here for several years, deriving its name 
from the reservation granted to Ozahshinciuah, which lay just above the 
village. Peoria was at one time a trading point of considerable import- 
ance, but its greatness waned with the building of the railroads and the 
diversion of trade to other towns. James Long, postmaster and general 
merchant, has lieen a prominent figure in Peoria for many years. 


Early in the Near ls:j7 John R. Wilkinson and Matthew Fenimore 
purchased a tract of land in the southern part of sections 1 and 2, in 
the western part of what is now Union township, and there laid out the 
town of Perrysburg in June of that year. The original plat consisted 
of thirty-six lots, ilatthew Fenimore established a trading post there 
aliout the time the town was laid out, and two years later Periysburg 
(contained aliout lialf a dozen residences, a tavern, the store, a black- 
smith simp and a church. William Burnett was one of the early hotel 
keepers and Dr. Henry Howe was one of the pioneer i:)hysicians, per- 
haps very first to practice his profession in the village. Before the 
Lake Erie & Western Railroad was built, Perrysburg was the center of 
trade for a large district of the sui-rounding country, l)ut after that 
much of its trade went to the new towns that grew up along the railroad. 
At the present time the principal business interests are the brick and 
tile factory, two general stores and a blacksmith shop. The population 
in 1910 was one hundred. 


In the eastern part of Richland township, on the Eel river and 
the Vandalia Railroad, is the village and postoffice of Pettysville. It 
was platted by Daniel Petty, who opened a store at that point when the 
railroad was built in 1872. A postoffice was established a little later 


and is still in existence, one route from it supplying mail to the adjacent 
rural districts. G. T. Orimcs is the present postmaster. Pettysville 
rei)orte(l a jiopulatiou of sixty in liHO. It lias a general store, a grain 
elevator and ships considerable quantities of grain, live stock and other 

farm pi'oduets. 


The old town of Piereehurg was platted in tiie spring of 1853 by 
John H. :Miller, Simon Suavely, F. W. Wiiite and Daniel Mendenhall. 
The original plat consisted of forty-eight lots, about one-half of which 
lay in "Wabash count.v and the others were in sections 10 and 15, in the 
eastern ])art of Erie township. Little can be learned regarding this old 
village, but it does not api)eai- that it ever became a place of much 
importance as a trading point. 


Although this town is incorporated and has a government of its 
own, it is practically a part of the city of Peru. It occupies the tract 
of land once owned by Daniel R. Bearss, just north of and adjoining 
the city limits and the history of its industries, schools, etc., is given in 
the chapter devoted to the city of Peru. 

Santa Fe 

In the spring of 1845 Ebenezer Fenimore laid out the town of Santa 
Fe, on the southeast quarter of section 32, in the exti*eme southern part 
of Butler township. Soon after it was platted William S. White opened 
a general store and when the town was two years old it boasted a saw- 
mill, the store, a schoolhouse and perhaps half a dozen residences. In 
1850 an addition of twenty-six lots was made to the town. Fenimore 
& Hritton built a mill on Pipe Creek, near the town, and operated it 
until it was destroyed by fire in 1869. Santa Fe was a thriving lit- 
tle place until the Pan Handle Railroad was built, when much of its 
trade went to Amboy and lIcGrawsville. Upon the completion of the 
Chesapeake & Ohio Railroad, a station called New Santa Fe was estab- 
lished on that line about three- fourths of a mile north of the old town. 
There is a grain elevator at the station and since the building of this 
railroad there has been a slight revival of business in Santa Fe. The 
population iti 1910 was 150. 

Snow Hill 

Snow Hill, once a village of promise in the northeast corner of Har- 
rison township, was laid out some time in the early '5Us by Jacob Miller 


and Elijah Lieuranee, on section 3, township 25. range 5. The pro- 
prietors of the town established a large steam saw mill tliere about 
the time the plat was filed and soon after a blacksmith shop was opened 
near the mill. A little later a man named Lawson started a general 
store, which became an important trading house for the surrounding 
country, ilr. Lawson was killed by a falling limb striking him on the 
head, while he was on his way from Peru with a wagon load of goods, 
and his successor in the mercantile business at Snow Hill was Parker 
Hollingsworth. Jesse ^filler started a cabinet shop about 1854 and a 
number of the articles of furniture he made are still to be seen in the 
homes of some of the old settlers. After the completion of the Pan 
Handle Railroad Snow Hill began to decline. Jesse and George Bower 
bought the lots as they were offered for sale and finally succeeded in 
having the plat vacated. 

South Peru 

The plat of South Peru was filed for record on September 12, 1873. by 
Laban. Elizabeth, ilaria and Rachel Armstrong, and William Erwin, 
whose wife was Elizabeth A. Armstrong. It consisted of thirty-eight 
lots, but several additions have since been made, the most notable ones 
being the additions of Cole and Armstrong. The town is situated in 
the northern part of Washington township and is separated from the 
city of Peru by the Wabash river. A wheel factory was started on the 
south side of the river two years before the town of South Peni was 
laid out. It was afterward converted into a furniture factory and was 
burned in 1876. Other industries were a packing house and a brewery. 
The population in 1910 was 866. In January, 1914. a movement was 
started by the citizens of the town to secure the annexation of the 
suburb to the city of Peru. The ordinance of annexation was passed 
on March 10, 1914. (See the chapter on the City of Peru.) 


The old town of Stockdale was located on the line that divides 
Miami and Waliash counties. Tiie larger part of the plat was in 
Wabash county, but a portion of the town was in the extreme south- 
east corner of Perry township. Stockdale was laid out liy Thomas 
Goudy in 1837 and for a number of years it was the principal trading 
point for the early settlers of that region. When the Eel River (now 
the Vandalia) Railroad was built and the town of Roann grew up only 
a short distance awa.y, the village of Stockdale ceased to grow and after 
a few years began to decline. A decade after- the completion of the 


railroad tlii' i;rist mill ami a t'l'W dwelliiiys were all that remained of 
the oiue aetive, thriviuy; village. 


About two and a half miles southeast of Mexico was onee a settle- 
ment called Stringrtown, from tlie fact that there were a number of 
houses "strung" along both sides of the Peru and Mexico road. Evans 
Bean had a general store here at one time and there was a grist mill 
operated by John S. Winters. The mill w^as finally destroyed by tire, 
the store was removed to some other locality, and the last business con- 
cern in Stringtown was the cabinet shop of a man named Ireland. 
After his removal to Mexico the other residents one by one departed 
and nothing of the old settlement remains. 

Union City 

The town of I'liioii City was laid out by George Ilill in April, 1861, 
on the southwest quarter of section 31, township 29, range 4, about 
two miles west of present village of Deedsville. The original plat 
consisted of seventeen lots. On some of the old maps of iliami 
county this place appears as "Union," but little can be learned regard- 
ing its growth or the cause of its decay. It probably succumbed to the 
inevitable when the railroad was built and the towns of Macy and 
Deedsville came into prominence as trading centers. 


On April 21. 1854. Andrew Wolpert filed with the county recorder 
a plat of a town to be known as Urbana, located in the northeast (|uarter 
of section 12, township 25, range 4, a short distance north of the 
present village of McGrawsville. The plat shows eighteen lots, but 
the town never became a place of much importance, owing chiefly to 
the fact that McGrawsville had the advantage of the railroad and drew 
the trade of the neighborhood. 


This village is a station on the Lake Erie & Western Raili'oad in the 
extreme northwest corner of the county. It is the outgrowth of the 
railroad and in 1910 reported a population of 105. Wagoner has a saw 
mill, two general stores, a money order postoffice with one rural route, 
and is the shipping and supply point for a large farming district in 
the nnrthwestcni i>art ol' IVIiami and the southei-n part of Fulton county. 



Waupecong is the largest town in Clay township. It is situated 
within one mile of the Howard county line and about four miles east 
of Bennett's Switch. When tlie plat of the town was filed on A])ril 
20, 1849, by James Highland. Jacob Ilight and Andrew Petty, it was 
given the name of "White Hall. Andrew Petty established a trading 
post and was also interested in the luml)er business. Otto P. Webb 
put in a large stock of goods soon after the town was laid out and 
carried on successful business for several years. Other early merchants 
were H. D. Hattery, Andrew Cable, George W. Lawver and Joseph 
and Henry ilygrant. The first physician was a Dr. IMorehead. A man 
named Miller established a sawmill at an early day and a steam flour 
mill was erected some years later by John Sraucker, who sold out to 
Jacob Slirock. Although some distance from a railroad, Waupecong 
has continued to be the principal trading point for a large and rich 
agricultural district in the southern part of Miami and the northern 
part of Howard county. The population of the village in 1910 was 


An old map of ]\liami county shows the village of Wheatville as 
being situated on section 36, in the southern part of Perry township. 
The writer has been unable to learn anything coneeniing its founders 
or the date when it was established. It was evidently a place of some 
importance at the beginning of the Civil war, in 1861, as the adjutant- 
general's reports contain the names of a number of Miami county 
volunteers who gave their address as Wheatville, and one of the 
companies of tlie Indiana Legion was known as the "Wheatville 


Amos Wooley and his thi-ee sons came to ]\Iiami county in 1846 
and settled in the northwest corner of Richland township. The young 
men were mechanics and soon after their arrival they started a black- 
smith and wagon shop on their father's farm in section three. A 
few years later William Harp, a son-in-law of the elder Mr. Wooley, 
opened a general store. A settlement grew up about the store and 
shop, which in time became known as Wooleytown. Peter Hand & Son 
engaged in the manufacture of grain cradles, which were sold through- 
out Miami and the adjoining counties, and J. M. Hoffman had a shop 
from which he turned out looms for weaving rag carpet and all sorts 


of woolen fabrics. After a few years .Mr. Hand removed his store to 
Five Corners and Abraham r.eedy l)ecame the merciiaiit at Wooleytowii. 
After the bnilding of the Lake Erie & Western Railroad and the found- 
ing of Denver, only two miles away, Wooleytown began to decline and 
within a few years all its former greatness and prosperity had departed, 
never to return. 


The following list of postoffiees in Miami county is taken from the 
Official Postal Guide for July, 1913. The figures after the name of 
each indicate the number of rural free delivery routes emanating from 
that office. Amboy, 2; Bennett's Switch, 1; Bunker Hill, 1; Chili, 1; 
Converse, 3; Deedsville, 1; Denver, 2; Gilead; Loree, 1; McGraws- 
ville, 1; Maey, 3; Mexico, 1; Miami, 1; North Grove, 1; Peru, 12; 
Pettysville, 1; Wagoner, 1. All are money order postoffiees and tlie 
offices at Converse and Peru are authorized to issue international money 
orders, good in foreign countries. 


Early Militia System — The Peru Blues — The Ciiipanue War — War 
With ilExico — The Civil War — iliAMi County Prompt to Respond 
— Thirteenth Regiment— Other Regiments in which Miami 
County was Represented — Fourteenth Battery — Miscellane- 
ous Enlistjients — The Indiana Legion — The Roll of Honor — 
Relief Work at Home — Spanish-American War. 

Soon after the government of the United States was established. Con- 
gress passed an ai't providing for the enrolhuent of all able-bodied male 
citizens between the ages of eighteen and forty-five .years, except in cer- 
tain eases, as the nation's militia. The men thus enrolled were to be 
formed into companies, regiments, brigades and divisions, with the proper 
eommaudiiig officers, in accordance with such regulations as the legis- 
latures of the several states might provide In the constitution of 
Indiana, adopted in 1816, it was provided that the governor should be 
commander-in-chief of the militia of the state, and that all military offi- 
cers should be appointed and commissioned by him. 

In 1836 a military company was organized at Peru, with Alvin M. 
Higgins as captain and Vincent 'Donald at first lieutenant. In cele- 
brating the Fourth of July that year. Lieutenant 'Donald was in.iured 
in an accident and died soon afterward. The company adopted the 
name of the "Peru Blues," and it is a matter of regret that the nmster 
rolls cannot be found, so that the names of this pioneer militaiy organiza- 
tion might be given. One of the principal duties of the company was 
to aid in protecting Col. Abel C. Pepper, the agent of the United States, 
as he passed through the Wabash country paying the Indians their 

So far as can now be learned, the only time this company was ever 
called into actual service was in the fall of 1836. George W. Ewing, of 
the trading firm of W. G. & (i. W. Ewing, was a connuissioned officer 
in the state militia, and about the time that Colonel Pepper was engaged 
in making the Indian payments in the early fall of 1836, Colonel Ewing 
despatched Daniel R. Beai-ss to Peru with the information that the Pot- 



tawatomi Indians liad risen against the govci-nnu'ut and with orders 
to Captain Iliggins to march with liis company to the scene of the trou- 
ble in Fulton county. Within a short time the forty or fifty members 
of the "Blues" assend)led. fully armed and e(|uipi)ed for the march. 
A number of citizens joined the company as volunteers and the expedi- 
tion set out over tiie ile.xico road. Some of the men were mounted and 
as a "war measure" Captain Iliggins ordered those on foot to press into 
service any horses along the line of marcii. The ordi'r was obeyed and 
a number of horses wei-e impressed, liut not witlioul some resistance 
ou the part of the owners. 

Near Rochester the Blues were joined l)y Captain Fitch's company 
from Logansport, when the real cause of the uprising was learned. 
It seems that Colonel Ewing, acting in the interest of his firm, had 
secured possession, in some way, of the money with which tJolonel I'ep- 
per was to make the Indian payment and refused to return it, claiming 
the Indians were in debt to his firm the full amount of their payment. 
When Captains Iliggins and Fitch were informed of the true state of 
affairs, they refused to obey the orders of Colonel Ewing and placed 
their companies at the disposal of Colonel Pepper. Ewing then returned 
the money to the paymaster and the militia remained with him uutil the 
Indians had been paid. The troops were called out by Colonel Ewing 
ou September 25, 1836, and returned to their iiomes on October 1st. 
The place where the payment was made was called Chipanue, and the 
affair was afterward humorously alluded to as the "Chipanue War." 

W.\K WITH JMexico 

Miami county had been organized but a little more than eleven years 
when the United States became involved in a dispute with ilexico over 
the aiine.xalion of Te.\a.s. Peaceable adjustment of the difficulty was 
out of the ((uestion, and on ^May 11, 18-lG, President Polk issued a proc- 
lamation declaring that a state of war existed between tiiis country and 
Mexico. Congi'ess being in session at the time immediately authorized 
the president to call for fifty thousand volunteers, and on Jlay 23, 1840, 
Governor James Whitcomb called upon the militia of Indiana for four 
regiment of infantry — two for immediate service and two to be lield in 
reserve. Captain John jM. Wilson, of Peru, at once commenced the work 
of raising a com{)any in Miami county. Failing to secure a full com- 
pany in the county, a uuud)er of men were enrolled from oilier counties 
and early in June the company left for New Albany, where on the 16th 
it was mustered into the service of the United States as Comijany B, 
First Indiana volunteer infantry, with Janu's P. Drake as colonel; C. C. 
Nave, lieutenant-colonel; Henry S. Lane, major. 


From the incomplete records in the office of the adjutant-general, it 
is impossible to ascertain tiie full enrollment of any of the organizations 
that went out from Indiana for service in the Mexican war, but the 
following names appear as members of Captain Wilson's company: 
Edward Anibal, Richard Bell, Joseph llishop, S. S. Bottow, Janies 
Brown, P. I. Brown, Lutlier Bush, George Carpenter, Jackson Castor, 
S. L. Clark, W. L. Clark, James Coleman, Henry Collins. Samuel Collyer, 
John S. Crooks, L. Curtis, H. Davenport, J. .S. Denton, William Doughty, 
C. M. Drouillard, D. M. Dunn, Quincy A. Fisk, William Flagg, J. B.' 
Franklin, Joseph Gertes, Nathan Gibson, (Jeorge Gordon, Isaac Harter, 
J. C. Harvey, Alexander Ilolliday, Jonas Hoover, W. Humphrey, A. A. 
Hunter, Barnet Judge, Ira Keieher, William Kelley, W. G. Kersner, 
L. B. Lynch, William McClaiu, Michael .McDonald, Edward ilcMauus, 
L. Marquiss, John Mellen, Conrad Metzer, .Alajor :\Iiller, Dennis Naugh- 
ton, J. W. Nichols, Michael 'Neal, Philip Parcels, James Parr, William 
Passons, Adam Pence, H. W. Penny, Valentine Prester, W. L. Price, 
J. H. Reed, James Rellahor, John Richardson, 8. Rodgers, George 

Roundebush, Jesse Rowdle, Sanderson, John Scarce, S. Segraves, 

Howard Shadinger, James Shahau, Levi Shellenberger, A. F. Smith, 
Charles Smith, D. R. Todd, Harvey Tucker, .Martin Wey, Edward Wil- 
son, W. T. Wilson, Abram Wright. 

Early in July the regiment embarked on the steamer "Grace Dar- 
ling," at New Albany, and proceeded down the Ohio and J\Iississippi 
rivers to New Orleans, where it was transferred to the barque "Sophia 
Walker" and on this vessel was carried to Point Isabelle, near the 
mouth of the Rio Grande. Here Colonel Drake reported to General 
Zachary Taylor and the First Indiana Infantry became a part of Gen- 
eral Taj'lor's army. At the expiration of one year the regiment was 
mustered out. 

The Civil War 

For forty years after the passage of the Missouri Compromise Act in 
1820, the slavery question was a "bone of contention" in nearly ever\- 
session of the United States Congress, in the campaign of 1860 threats 
were made by some of the slave states that, in the event of Abraham 
Lincoln's election to the presidency, they would withdraw from the 
Union. The people of the North were inclined to believe that these 
threats would not be carried out, but they were somewhat rudely awak- 
ened on December 20, 1860, when a state convention in South Carolina 
passed an ordinance of secession. Mississippi seceded on January 9, 
1861; Florida, January 10th; Alabama, January 11th; Georgia, Janu- 
ary 19th ; Louisiana, January 26th ; Texas, February 1st. Hence, when 


Mr. Liiifolii wa.s iiiaut^uratL'd on -MarL-h 4, LSGl, lie roiiml seven states 
already in rebellion against liis authority as president. Ordinances of 
secession were subsequently passed by the states of Arkansas, North 
Carolina, Tennessee and Virujinia. 

Major Robert Anderson, who was in fioiiiuiaiid of the hailior defenses 
at Cliai'h'stoii. Smith Carolina, removed his gai'rison from Kort Jloultrie 
to Fort Sumter, about tiie l)eyinuing of the year 1861, in order to be in 
a stronger position should an attempt be made to take possession of the 
defensive works about the eity. The secessionists looked upon Ander- 
son's action as a hostile movement and began the eonsti'uetion of bat- 
teries with a view to reducing Fort Sumter. On January 9, 1861, the 
steamer "Star of the West," an uiuirmed vessel carrying supplies to 
Major Anderson, was tired upon and compelled to turn back. In the 
official records this incident is considered as the beginning of the great 
Civil war, but the general jjublie was )iot thoroughly aroused to the 
gravity of tiie situation until tiiree months later. 

At 4:30 A. M., Friday, April 12, 1861, the lirst shot of the Civil war, 
as jiopularly understood, was directed against the solid walls of Fort 
Sumter. The little garrison promptly responded and for more than 
forty-eight hours the cannonading went on, when Major Anderson 
ca])itulated. He and his men were permitteil to retire from the fort 
with all the honors of war, saluting the flag before it was hauled down. 
This occurred on Sunday, April 14, 1861, and the next day President 
Lincoln issued a call for To. 000 voluiiteei-s "to preserve the T'uion and 
suppress the retiellion.'' 

All over the North, when the news that Fort Sumter had fallen 
was flashed by the telegraph, the excitement was intense. Political dif- 
ferences were forgotten in the general indignation at the insult offered 
to the flag. Before the news of the president's call had reached In- 
diana, (iovernor Morton sent the following telegram to Washington: 

"Indianapolis, hid., April 15, 1861. 
"To Abraham Lincoln, Tresidcnt of the I'nited States: 
"On behalf of the State of Indiana. I tender to you, for the defense 
of the Nation and to uphold the authority of the (.lovei'nmeiit, ten thou- 
sand men. 

"Oliver 1*. .AIorton, 

Governor of Indiana." 

The next day the governor issued his proclamation calling for six 
regiments of infantry as the state's (juota of the 75,000 troops asked 
for by the president. As Indiana had furnished five regiments for serv- 
ice in the Mexican war, to avoid historical confusion the first i-egiment 


organized for the Civil war was numbered the Sixth. The Indiana regi- 
ments raised under the first call for volunteers, with the colonels com- 
manding, were as follows : Sixth, Thomas T. Chittenden ; Seventh, 
Ebenezer Dumont; Eighth, AVilliam P. Benton; Ninth, Robert H. Mil- 
roy ; Tenth, Joseph J. Reynolds ; Eleventh, Lewis Wallace. 

As soon as the news of the governor's proclamation reached ]Miami 
county. Captain John M. ^Yilson, who had served in the war with Mex- 
ico, commenced organizing a company. Captain Wilson received his 
commis.sion on April 23, 1861, and, although he pushed the work of 
recruiting as rapidly as possible, the six regiments were made up be- 
fore he was ready to report. There were then twenty-nine companies 
at Camp IMorton, Indianapolis, in excess of the number required by 
the call, and sixty-eight other companies organized and ready to re- 
port in different parts of the state. Under these circumstances. Gov- 
ernor Morton, on his own responsibility and under the power vested in 
him as commander-in-chief of the militia, determined to organize five' 
regiments of twelve months' volunteers, "for the defense of the state, 
or for the service of the United States if a second call for volunteers 
should be issued." 

Thirteenth Infantry 

On May 6, 1861, the governor's action was sanctioned by the leg- 
islature, then in special session, in the passage of an act authorizing the 
governor to organize six regiments. These were numbered from the 
Twelfth to the Seventeenth, inclusive, and Captain Wilson's company 
was enrolled as Company B. Thirteenth Regiment, which was mus- 
tered into the United States service on June 19, 1861, for three years, 
with Jere C. Sullivan as colonel. The commissioned officers of the 
company at the time of muster in were: John M. Wilson, captain; 
William H. Shields, first lieutenant; William F. Wallick. second lieu- 
tenant. Captain Wilson w as afterward made major and promoted to • 
lieutenant-colonel ; Lieutenant Shields became captain, and Lieutenant 
Wallick was promoted to first lieutenant. William B. Vance also served 
as first lieutenant from July 15, 1863, until the expiration of his term 
of enlistment, and William H. Low-e, wdio succeeded him, was made 
captain of the company when the regiment was reorganized. George 
W. Rader, Silas Clark and Henry Sterne served as second lieutenants 
at different times. George W. Rader was promoted to regimental 
quartermaster and Silas Clark became captain of Company A when the 
regiment was reorganized in 1864. The muster roll of the company was 
as follows: 

Henry Sterne, first sergeant, promoted to second lieutenant and 


resigned on June 2, lcSG;i; James Carney, James Robinson, Jolin 11. 
Ream and Daniel Barker, sergeants; Simon E. Cliamberlain, William 
Starr, Amos B. Andrews, Alexander Leach, John Powell, William 
Vance, Francis Moore and John F. Warner, corporals; Henry Crone 
and Charles Trippeer, iiuisicians, and William Jlitchell, wagoner. 

Privates — James C. Barnes, William Bates, Cornelius Bell, Samuel 
Bennett, Wade Blackburn, John Bowman, Lucas G. Bryant, John R. 
Cassady, Leonard Chapman, Eli Chichester, Silas Clark, Zach. Correl, 
David Cox, John Cninnnell, Isaac Davis, William Day, John Dougherty, 
Jacol) Edwards, ]\Iichael Ellward, Jacob Elshire, Henry Evans, Matthew 
Fagan. 15. A. Farnham, Amos Fortney, William Fox, Leander Frazier, 
John Gohn, Levi Gonser, Michael Gonser, Andy W. Griggs, Charles 
B. Harris, William Hayner, Harvey Hauk, Benjamin F. Huston, Wil- 
liam Jackson, Henry Jay, Joseph A. Karthall, Riley G. King, James 
D. Lawrence, Garrison McFarland, James IMai'low, William Mason, 
Lucas G. Maxfield, George F. .Miller. James Miller, John .Miller, R. H. 
Moore, Charles ilontgomery, William Morrow, R. S. Mow, John O'Meara, 
George Osgood. Robert Owens. Leopold Panly, William Pen, Charles 
Price, Frank Price, Nicholas Rabe, Michael W. Ream, James Reese, 
William Schlott, Samuel Shively, David Smith, Seneca Smith, Francis 
Sowers, William H. Stevenson, Allen B. Stroule, ^lortiiiier Styles, Wil- 
liam Sutton, Amos Swasey, George Thompson, John P. Vandevender, 
Isaac Vandorn, William Wampler, John Warner, Robert Watson, 
Stephen Witham, Joseph Withey, Ben.jamin F. York. 

Recruits — Nelson Aker, Jesse Bogart, Thomas Chapman, Alexander 
Chronister, Christian Disher, Patrick Dolan, Jonathan Gonser, Ernest 
Graring. Daniel Hamilton, William Hurst, William P. Iliff, John Henry, 
Joseph ]Maguiss, Hugh P. iMcCarty, Jackson ilcC^uiston, Herman Opity, 
Francis Pruce, Freeman Scarborough, John C. Smith, James M. Strode, 
Henry White, Francis Widour. 

The Thirteenth Regiment lelt lndiauai)olis on July 4, 1861, for west- 
ern Virginia and a few days later .joined General McClellan's army. It 
was first engaged at the battle of Rich ;Mo\intain, where it lost eight 
killed and nine wounded. Among the engagements in w-hich it took 
part were the battles of Alleghany, Deserted Farm, the siege of Forts 
Wagner and Gregg, nearly all the actions with General Butler's army 
south of Richmond. Cold Harbor, Strawberry Plains, the siege of Pet- 
ersburg and. a number of minor skirmishes. On June 24, 1864, the 
men whose time had expired were mustered out and the veterans and 
recruits were later reorganized into a battalion of five companies, which 
was mustered out at Goldsboro, North Carolina, September 5, 1865. 

The six regiments sent out from Indiana under the first call were 


mustered in for three mouths. At the expiration of that time all 
were reorganized and entered the service for three years. In these 
reorganized regiments were a number of men from Miami county. 
John P. Hendricks served as a private in Company E, Eighth In- 
fantry; in Company P of the same regiment were Joseph C. Mussel- 
man, Jacob Stuttler and John Watson; William H. Noaks Avas a 
corpoi-al in Company I, in which company the following privates 
were credited to Miami county: William Forney, George W. Gates, 
George W. Haines, Ezra Hunnicut, Levi P. Lilly, James P. Loyd, 
Joshua Tucker and Oscar Wickersham. 

Eighth Infantry 

On August 20, 1861, the Eighth Regiment was nnistered in for three 
years, with William P. Benton as colonel. Its first service was with 
General Fremont in Missoui-i, after which it served in Arkansas until 
the opening of the Vicksburg campaign in the spring of 1863, when 
it joined the army commanded by General Grant. After the fall of 
Vicksburg it was in Louisiana until the following spring, when it was 
sent to Virginia and took part in General Sheridan's raid through the 
Shenandoah valley. From Virginia it was sent to Georgia and was 
mustered out in that state on Septemljer 17, 1865. 

John Stanford, of Peru, served as a private in Company D, Ninth 
Infantry, his name being the only one on the muster rolls credited to 
Miami county. 

Eleventh Infantry 

When the reorganized Eleventh Regiment was mustered into the 
three years' service on August 31, 1861, under Colonel Lewis Wallace, 
there were five Miami county men on the muster rolls. Cornelius Pontius 
and Jacob Stanton were in Company D ; Manassah Leedy and John A. 
Nixon in Company F, and Frederick Prankfelt was a private in Com- 
pany K. This regiment took part in the operations about Fort Donel- 
son, was in the battle of Shiloh and other engagements in the West, after 
which it was ordered to Virginia. It was mustered out at Baltimore, 
Maryland, July 26, 1865. 

Twelfth Infantry 

Fifty-three men from Miami county served as privates in the re- 
organized Twelfth Infantry, and were scattered through the companies 
as follows: Company A, Solomon Blousser; Company C, William S. 
Adams, Henry Allen, Lewis Allen, Victory Allen, Cornelius Beeman, 

HISTORY OF :\ITA:MI county 211 

Bunjaiiiin Brandon, (leorge Craig, Goldsiuitli Cliahners, Charles II. 
Dewey, Andrew J. Goodrich, Joseph Joslyn, William Lowrey, John R. 
Marshall, Miehad Mason, Jacob A. ]\Ietzi,'er, William E. Mowbray, 
Thomas Presuott, John M. Price, William M. Shane, James Snyder, 
Frederick Strebin, David Swank, John Wliitesell, Joseph Witham, 
Morris 0. Witham, Andrew Woolpert ; ('onii)any 1), Alexander Brown, 
Solomon Cleland. Oliver P. Cover, Daniel Daines, AVilliam Eakright, 
John Newton and William Baucli ; Company E, Eli W. Buntaiu, Moses 
Biintain, Elias Cluunbers, George Dawson, Abraham Dehnff, Joseph 
Jameson, Elisha j\IeGee and Frederick Sunday; Company I, Cornelius 
Baruhisel, Samuel Barnhisel, Levi Gaerte, Andrew J. Musselman, Wil- 
liam Perry and George W. Rhodes; Company K, Jacob Bahney, William 
Madlum, John Shoemaker and Jesse Wilcoxen. 

The Twelfth regiment was mustered into the three years' service on 
August 17, 1862, with William IT. Link as colonel. lie was killed at 
the battle of Richmond, Kentucky, and Reuben William succeeded to 
the command. It took part in the Atlanta campaign of 1864 and the 
I'ainous march to the sea and u]i through the Carolinas. With the ex- 
ception of a few recruits and drafted men, the regiment was mustered out 
on June 8, 1865, those whose time had not expired being then consoli- 
dated with other regiments. 

Sixteenth Infantry 

The Sixteenth Regiment, one of those that was organized for the de- 
fense of the state, was mustered into the United States service on May. 
27, 1862, for three years, under command of Colonel Pleasant A. Hackle- 
man. During its one year's service it was in Maryland and Virginia 
and was the first regiment to march thr(nigh the streets of Baltimore 
after the Sixth ^Massachusetts had been assaulted there by a mob in 
April, 1861. Comjiany F of this regiment was recruited in Miami coun- 
ty. Elijah Hawkins, who was mustered in as first lieutenant, was pro- 
moted to captain and George Cline became first lieutenant. Henry 
Boycc was first sergeant ; Andrew J. Lee, Isaac M. Davis and William 
A. Walker, sergeants; Leander J. Hawkins, Joseph F. Fulton, Wilson 
Deniston, William Kimberlin, Daniel W. Jones and Charles H. Wilkin- 
son, corporals; Aaron E. Teague, nuisician, and William Garland, 

Privates — David Bi'ock, Isaiah Brooks, George Cline, Jesse Colaw, 
Jackson Crane, Abraham Deeds, Thonuis Dolan, William II. II. Fallis, 
Alvanes C. Flemmens, Franklin Furry, Frank Geebow, David D. Gerard, 
Henry L. Green, Daniel L. Hall. Ephraim Ilemby, Jonas Keim, Nixon 


Lamm, Hiram A. JloCartiiey. William A. McDounell, WiUaim McKay. 
David McMillan. William Phillebaum, Conrad Plotner, Josiah Pond, 
James Ramer, Lewis Reed, Louis Reynolds, AYilliam Reynolds, Darius 
A. Riddle, Jacob Silvius, Asa Sinclair, Jfiller Smith, John Smith, Wil- 
liam F. Storm, John R. Thorn, Charles Tiee. Jeremiah M. Vaughn, 
Henry Yenis. Perry Walker. Robert Ward. Ba.ssett W. West, John 

Recruits— Casper Beinberg, Thomas Britt. John J. Bumgarner, John 
Doll. James Donahue. Commodore Ferguson, Nathaniel Grifan, Joseph 
Hammond, William Haydon. Freeland Hyson, Rollin Jones, George W. 
Keene, Matthew McCluster, William MeConnell, John R. JIcDowell, 
Samuel :\Iartin. Edward Milliken, Frank M. Morris, John Muldown, 
John B. Myers, Charles J. Osgood. Martin Reeder, George Rink, Philip 
Robe, Florian Sager, Jacob W. Smith, John Smock, Henry L. Stafford 
Charles Tyler. 

Soon after it was mustered in the regiment was ordered to Kentucky 
to repel the invasion of Kirby Smith. On August 30, 1862, it took part 
in the battle of Richmond, Kentucky, losing 200 men killed and wounded 
and 600 captured. After the captured men were exchanged the regi- 
ment went down the Mississippi river to take part in the campaign 
against Vicksburg. On January 11. 1863, it assisted in the reduction of 
Arkansas Post and was the first regiment to plant its colors on the- 
enemy's works. It was then attached to General Hovey's division and 
participated in the military operation incident to the siege of Vicks- 
burg. It was then with General Banks on the Red river campaign and 
was on duty in Louisiana until mustered out on June 30, 1865, when 
the veterans and recruits were attached to the Thirteenth Indiana Cav- 
alry, which was mustered out the following October. 

Seventeenth Infantry 

The Seventeenth Infantry was mustered in as one of the state regi- 
ments for one year on June 12, 1861, but was soon afterward mustered 
into the United States service for three years, with Milo S. Hascall as 
colonel. In Company F were seven men from Miami county. George 
F. Hayden, who entered the service as sergeant, was promoted to cap- 
tain in April, 1864, and the following served as privates : Andrew Hook, 
John Richardson, Amos C. Smith, James Z. Smith, Charles Stewart and 
John Thomas. Julius C. Kloenne, of iliami county, was commissioned 
captain of Company K on April 25. 1861, and in the same company 
Allen D. Jones held the rank of sergeant and Charles T. Hughes and 
Newton Jones served as privates. 


The tirst service of this regiment was iu Tennessee and in the coiu- 
paign against Corintli, Mississippi. In February, 1863, the men were 
ordered to forage for horses, in order that the command might become 
mounted infantry, and it is said that they displayed a peculiar talent 
for tintliug horses concealed iu the most unsuspected places. The men 
were then armed witli the Spencer repeating rifle aud as part of Wil- 
der "s famous brigade took part in the engagements at Hoover's Gap, 
Chickamauga, a number of actions during the Atlanta campaign iu 
1864, and after the fall of Atlanta it was on duty in (leorgia until mus- 
tered out at Macon on August 8, 1865. 

Twentieth Infantry 

Tliis regiment was mustered in at Indianapolis, July 22, 1861, for 
three years, with William L. Brown as colonel. Company A was re- 
cruited in JMiami county and at the time of muster in was officered by 
John Van Valkenburg, captain; William B. Reyburn, first lieutenant; 
Jonas Hoover, second lieutenant. Colonel Brown was killed at the btit- 
Tle of Manassas Plains and on August 30, 1862, Captain Van Valkenburg 
was commissioned colonel. Following is the roster of the company : 
John F. Thomas, tirst sergeant (promoted adjutant and captain) ; 
Sergeants, John T. Bright, George A. Strive, Henry W. Delbert, Charles 
R. Pew (promoted to first lieutenant) ; Corporals, Charles F. Delbert, 
Hezckiali Weisner, William Trippeer (promoted to first lieutenant), 
William 11. Dangerfield, William C. H. Reeder, Warren J. Hawk (pro- 
moted to second lieutenant), Nicholas J. Smith, John T. Durdap; musi- 
cians, John P. Mabie, William B. Miller; wagoner, Hopthni B. Thorn. 

Privates — Amos I). Ash, Marion F. Barbour, Nerthew S. Bennell, 
Nathaniel Blackburn, Nathan W. Blood, Samuel G. Busey, George 
Cockley, Newton ("onner, William J. Courter, George W. Darr, Jona- 
than W. Daully, James Deloiig (promoted to first lieutenant), William 
J. Edmond, Ira B. Edson, John B. F'airman, W^ilson Fisher, Isaac Flook, 
Louis B. Fulwiler, Delford C. Goff, John H. Goodwin, John B. Hanu, 
Elias Harvey, William T. lloft'man, Solomon Iloifman, Ilenrj' Irvin, 
Diekoson Johnson. Morris Kelley, Lucian A. King, Philip H. LaRue, 
Thomas Lee, William .M. iMcCulloch. Henry I. IMcGrew, Joseph McMel- 
len, Simeon S. Marsh, George S. Montgomery, William A. Morris, William 
6. Mowbray, George V. Murphy, Jeremiah Murray, Isaac N. Murrysip, 
William Newlieni, William H. Owens, Meredith G. Parrish, William B. 
Passage, William 11. Patterson, John W. Pier, Robert Pelky, Eli H. 
Pierson, Conrad Plotner, John W. Preble, AVilliam Proctor, Reuben Rich- 
ardson, Wallace Richardson (promoted to secnnd lieutenant), George 


W. Eoliinson, Theodore F. Rock, Elijah Roe, Richard Rogers, Levi A. 
Sager, Johu :M. Sager, Henry F. Sc-liaeffer, Charles A. 8eholl, Jacob 
Sharj), Jacob I. Shiie, Andrew Sigarfoos, James H. Smallwood, Charles 
A. Smith, Charles W. Smith, Henry A. Southard, William H. Staley; 
Sylvester Stanford. Jacob Stuber, Samuel O. Swaggart, John ^1. Tiee, 
Benjamin F. Tinkham, John S. Tucker, Henry S. Tumblin, Reuben 
R. Tumblin, Edwin B. Weist, Emanuel Wentling, Jesse B. Williams, 
Jacob Wisel, Daniel G. Wrigiit. 

Recruits — David P. Browulee, Napoleon B. Conner, Benjamin F. 
Cook, William Counts. Richard Fenton, John W. Flook, Noah Herrell, 
John IMcDonald. David McMillen, Peter McMillen, James J. JIartiu, 
Martin O'Brien. James 'SI. Olinger, John Richardson, George A. Stowe, 
George Tumlilin. 

Almost iminediatel.y after the regiment was mustered in it was sent 
to Maryland to guard the lines of communication with the North. 
Early in September. 1861. it was sent to Hatteras Inlet, but retunied 
to Virginia in time to participate in the Peninsular campaign of 1862. 
It was engaged at Fair Oaks, the Orchard, the Seven Days' battles and 
numerous slight skirmishes. Subsequently it took part in the battles 
of Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, the Mine Run cam- 
paign, most of the battles and skirmishes of the Wilderness campaign 
in 1864 and the siege of Petersburg. On October 18, 1864, the men 
whose time had expired were mustered out and the regiment was re- 
organized, the veterans and recruits of the Seventeenth and Ninteenth 
regiments being added to the Twentieth, William Orr becoming colonel 
of the reorganized regiment. William Trippeer, of Company A, was 
made captain of Company H, and Edwin B. Weist, a iliami county 
soldier, was commissioned second lieutenant of the same company. The 
regiment was present at the surrender of General Lee at Appomattox, 
April 9, 1865, after which it moved to Washington and took part in 
the grand review. It was then ordered to Louisville, Kentucky, where 
it was mustered out on July 12, 1865. 

Twenty-ninth Infantry 

In this regiment Miami count.v was represented in three companies 
— F, H and I. At the time of muster in C. Perry Butler was second 
lieutenant of Company I. He was transferred to Company F as first 
lieutenant and on May 17, 1864, was commissioned captain of that com- 
pany, in W'liich he was the only man from iliami couut.y. On June 1, 
1865, he was commissioned major of the regiment. 

Company H consisted largely of Miami county men. The commis- 
sioned officers of this company during its term of service were as fol- 


lows: Captains, William W. Shiilcr, Adam S. Loventhal, Hiram B. 
Bates ; First Lieutenants, Henry Boyee, William A. Duey, Hiram B. 
Bates; Second Lieutenants, John Posey and Thomas H. Reese. Fol- 
lowing is the complete roster of noncommissioned officers and enlisted 
men: Willijim Thompson and Benjamin F. Stambaugh, sergeants; 
Thomas H. Reese. Nelson Earl, Samuel Cade and Franklin G. Moore, 
corporals; Benjamin West, musician. 

Privates — William W. Boyce, John Daily, Thomas Dolan, Jocko 
Goodbo, James H. Harshman, James Horton, John Killin, James ilc- 
Clain, James I\IeNair, George G. Manas. Samuel E. Mettee, John Miles, 
Patrick ^loloney, Theron Potter, W^illiam Ream, Eli Reese, Leonard 
Rider, Harry S. Walker, Robert W'ard. 

Recruits — James A. Clemens, Byron T. Cooper, John Dailey, Lor- 
enzo Elibee, Jasper Farnham, George W. Keim, John J. Kennedy, Isaac 
A. Lindsy, Erastus Jliller, Jacob Musselman, James Petty, William H. 
Petty, Elijah Poor, E. II. Reese, Jackson Raccoon, Peter Raccoon, Jacob 
Smith, Alvin B. Stutesman, Elwood Ward. 

The privates in Company I who were credited to Miami county 
were Frederick Jliller, William Thompson and William Williams. 

The Twenty-ninth was organized at Laporte and was mustered in 
on August 27, 1861, with John F. Miller as colonel. Early in October 
it joined General Rousseau in Kentucky and was with General Mc- 
Cook's division in the expedition to the Tennessee river. In the spring 
of 1862 it took part in the second day's battle of Shiloh, where it was 
under fire for more than five hours and lost heavily in killed and 
wounded. It then took an active part in the siege of Corinth, after 
which it moved with General Buell to Kentucky in pursuit of Bragg 's 
army. Returning to Tennessee, it was with General Roseerans at the 
battle of Stone's river and in the TuUahoma campaign, taking part in 
numerous minor skirnnshes. It was engaged both days in the battle 
of Chickamauga, where it again suffered heavy losses, and after the 
men returned to field from their veteran furlough, early in 1864, the 
regiment was on post duty in Georgia. Colonel Miller having been pro- 
moted to brigadier-general, during the latter part of its service the 
regiment was commanded bj' Colonel David M. Dunn. 


This regiment was musten-d in at Anderson, Indiana, September 
16, 1861, for three yeai'S, with Ashury Steele as colonel. Three Miami 
county men served as jirivates in Company II, viz. : Ferdinand Rickert, 
C. E. Caster and William J. ('aster. Winslow E. Jesiop was a sergeant 
in Company K, in wliicli the following jirivates were credited to Jliami 


county : John Freeman, Joseph A. Keller, William R. -Moon, lieigamin 
A. Spring, James Taylor, John Tharp, John W. Veach, Henry \Vorth- 
ington. Samuel AVorthington. 

About the middle of October tlie regiment was ordered to Kentucky 
and remained in camp until Fcljruary 14, 1862, when it was ordered 
to join General (iraxit in Tennessee. It arrived at Fort Douelson soon 
after that post surrendered and was then sent to take part in the ex- 
pedition against New Madrid, Missouri. It was then in Arkansas until 
the spring of 1863, when it joined the forces under General Grant in 
the siege of Yicksburg and was in some of the most hotly contested 
engagements of that campaign. After the fall of Vicksbux'g it was 
ordered to Louisiana and from there to Texas. This regiment took part 
in the battle of the Civil war at Palmetto Ranche, Texas, May 
13, 1865, and John J. Williams, a private of Company B, who enlisted 
from Jay county, is said to have been the last man killed in action in 
the war. He fell at Palmetto Ranche on the date above named. The 
regiment was one of the last to be mustered out. serving in Texas until 
February 3. 1866. 

Thirty-ninth Infantry 

This regiment, wliieh later made a famous reputation as the Eighth 
Cavalry, was mustered in at Indianapolis on August 29, 1861, with 
Thomas J. Harrison as colonel. A. S. Lakin, of Peru, was chaplain of 
the regiment and Company A was recruited chiefly in Miami county. 
In this company Orris Blake and Horace S. Foote served as captain. 
In ]\Iarch, 1864, Captain Blake was made major of the Twelfth Cavalry 
and Horace S. Foote was promoted to the command of the company. 
The first lieutenants were Elhanan V. Peterson, who was promoted 
to captain of Company M after the regiment was made a cavalry or- 
ganization, Horace S. Foote, Philander Blake and Nelson Hurst; the 
second lieutenants were Horace S. Foote. Phillander Blake and An- 
drew Huffman. James ilcGonigal was the first sergeant; Robert C. 
Yoor, Josiah F. Burris, Daniel M. Hinkle and Robert Shilling, ser- 
geants; Samuel C. Jones. Abraham Hicks, Alexander Jameson, Benja- 
min McKee, David W. Rowe, Uriah W. Obliuger, Albert J. Davidson 
and Horace W. Jones, corporals ; Peter Miller and Peter Wright, musi- 
cians; Hamlet D. Thayer, wagoner. 

Privates — Erastus AUenbaugh, Benson Arrick, John Band, Owen W. 
Barker, William Benbow, Willard N. Berry, James L. Bigley, Philan- 
der Blake. Daniel Brannon. Augustus Browneller, James Burns, William 
H. C. Campbell, James C'arrothers, Williamson Carrothers, John H. 


Cliiik, Williiini C'owger, Jolin 8. Dabuey, Ariiokl Davis, William il. 
II. Dell, Hugh Domiingtoii, Guilford C. Eltzroth, William C. Eltzroth, 
Leaiuier Vw, Amos Fiiiiii-y, David Finney, Joseph Finney, James N. 
Flagg, Thomas Fox. Ile/.ckiah Freestone, William F. Gabrael, Daniel 
Gatton, Josiah Gauff, Johii 1'. Gittinger,'Zac'hariah Gunkel, George W. 
Hand, William Harvey, Jasper Hawkins, Al)salom Herrell, William 
Herrell. I'ati-irk Hieks, John X. Hurst, John Jaekson, Charles P. Jones, 
David W. J ones, ' George W. Jones, John X. Jones, Joseph R. Jones, 
Ralph II. Jones, William W. Jones, Andrew J. Keller, Briuton E. Lam- 
liurii, Oliver J. Lamburn, Hufus R. Landrum, James W. Larkiu, Aaron 
Lewis, George W. Loekwood, William L. Long, John ^larlow, Philip 
-AliUer, Reulien ]\Iol)ley, Lewis Xoel, I'erry D. Pearson. William Pence, 
P)en,jandn Pontious, Sanniel Pontious, George W. Plainer, William B. 
I'owel, Christopher Repp, Albert C. Shoaf, Joseph D. Sliney, William 
II. H. Snyder, George W. Stout, Oliver P. Swain, William Tate, Alex- 
ander S. Taylor, George 1. Taylor, Hiram S. Thomas, Thomas Q. Utter, 
Ahijah B. Vore, William A. Wikel, William G. Wilson. 

During its term of service a large number of recruits were added 
to Company A, but in the adjutant-general's report the residence of 
none of these recruits is given. It is possible that some of them were 
from Miann county. 

As au infantry regiment the Thirty-ninth took part in the early 
nulitary operations in Kentucky, the battle of Shiloh, the siege of Cor- 
inth, and then returned to Kentucky as part of (Jeneral Buell's army in 
pursuit of Bragg. In April, 1863, the regiment was mounted and served 
as mounted infantry during the remainder of that year. Companies 
L and ]\I wei'e added later in the year and the organization then be- 
came known as the Eighth Indiana Volunteer Cavalry. Lieutenant Pet- 
erson was made captain of Company 'SI, in which the following ^liami 
county men served as pi'ivates: ^Martin Gate, Tertullus Collins, John 
W. P'owler, Jeremiah Hatch, George T. Jeffers, Sylvester Leedy, Harri- 
son B. Mitchell, James Ogle, Isaac Pavey, Conrad Platner, Alfred Ray- 
jior, Christoi)her Sanders, Henry Sharp, Xelson Smith, Oliver P. Swain, 
Sanuiel Swengle, Robert S. Thomas. Barret H. West, P^rancis M. Wil- 
kinson, Aaron S. York, Sanuiel II. Yueum. 

After the reorgani/.aticm as a cavalry regiment, the Eighth took part 
in General Rous>eau"s raid in AJabanui and in General McCook's raid 
around Atlaida. It formed ]iart of General Kilpatrick's cavalry in the 
march to the sea and uj) thi'ough the Carolinas. At Morrisville, under 
connnand of Colonel Fielder A. Jones (Colonel Harrison having been 
promoted to brigadier-general), the regiment whipped Wade Hamp- 
ton "s entire force and had the honor of fighting the last battle in North 


Carolina. It remained on duty in that state until July 20, 1865,- when 
it was ordered home. On the last day of that month the Eighth was 
given a reception at the state house in Indianapolis, after which the 
men were discharged and retm-ned to their homes. During the entire 
term of service the regiment bore upon its muster rolls the names of 
2,500 men. It captured 1,500 prisoners, 1,000 stands of arms, three rail- 
road trains, 1,400 horses, 14 pieces of artillery and four battle flags, 
and destroyed many miles of railroad. Of all the regiments sent out 
by the Hoosier state, none made a more houonible record than the 
Thirty-ninth— the Eighth Cavalry. 

Fortieth Ixfaxtrt 

In this regiment Company B was composed almost entirely of Miami 
county boys, and a few from the county served in Company I. At the 
muster in, December 30, 1861, the commissioned officers of Company 
B were as follows: Daniel A. Ewiug, captain; John C. Belew, first lieu- 
tenant ; James C. Thompson, second lieutenant. Those who served as 
commissioned officers at some period of the term of service were : First 
lieutenants, Willard Griswold( promoted to ad.jutant of the regiment), 
Jeremiah C. Brower, Charles 8. Smith ( promoted to captain, :\larch 1, 
1865), Nathaniel Y. Buck; second lieutenants, Albert dinger, Frank- 
lin Cranor and John Debarr. 

The roster of the noncommissioned officers and enlisted men shows 
the names of Albert dinger and John C. Terrell, sergeants; John C. 
Owens, Henry K. Butt. Jeremiah C. Brower, William L. Thompson, 
corporals ; John Groat, musician ; James Owens, wagoner, and the fol- 

Privates — Isaac Adams, Robert Aitcherson, Augusti;s Anaker. 
James II. Banks. George II. Beard, Joseph A. Belew, William Berger, 
William P. Brannon, Nathaniel Y. Buck, James W. Carpenter, Onesi- 
mus Collins, Cassius ]\I. Cook, William G. Cook, Perry Cover, Frank- 
lin Cranor, John Debarr, Arthur Doud. Perry Eekleberger, Joseph 
Elshnie, Lewis H. Everhart, Skillman Fansler, John H. Gourly, John 
Hahn, John Hartlerode. Thomas Ilelvey, Austin D. Hide. Thomas Johns, 
Hiram Julian, Absalom Kissmau, Frederick Kopp, John B. Lee, John 
Lesley, Morris Lesley, William McConaha, William Myers, Milton Mil- 
ler, Charles E. :Morrett. John :\Iorrett, John II. Null, David R. P. Owens, 
Henry S. Phillebaum, David Ramsey, John W. Smith, Sanford Staley, 
Samuel Swoveland, Amos Uplinger, William Vauschouek, Jacob Wall- 
ing, David Walters, James Walters, Andrew Waymire, John R. Way- 
mire, Samuel Werts, David A. Wiles, ilauoah Wolpert, John Wooley, 
Isaac Yike. 


Reci'uits — Dennis Driski'U, Isaac R. Uk'un, Joseph llalui, Henry 
Halley, Simon P. Irby, Amos ]Mobley, James S. Ramsey, Jeremiah Rey- 
nolds, Jacob F. Shackleford, Albert Thomas and Henry Willis. 

In Company I of the Fortieth Mark Dwire served as first lieutenant; 
Alfred T. Warwick, second lieutenant; Dennis Driskell and Abraham 
■\Villiams as privates. The name of Deiniis Driskell also appears as a 
recruit in Company B, from which he was transferred. 

The Fortietli Infantry was organized in Lafayette and left there 
immediately after being mustered in for Hardstown, Kentucky. In 
February, 1862, it nuirehed with General Buell's army to Nashville and 
into northern Alabama. It next joined in the pursuit of Bragg's forces 
through Kentucky, after which it reported to General Rosecrans and 
took part in the battle of Stone's River, or Murfreesboro, where it lost 
eighty-five men in killed, wounded and missing. Later it was in the 
engagements at Chickamauga, Lookout Mountain, ^Missionary Ridge, 
and several of the principal actions of the Atlanta campaign of 18C4, 
particularly the assault on the Confederate intrenehments at Kenesaw 
mountain and the battle of Peachtree creek. After the occupation of 
Atlanta by the Federal forces, the regiment returned to Tennessee with 
General Thomas and was engaged in the battle of Nashville, Decem- 
ber 15-16, 1864, and the pursuit of Hood's array which followed. It 
was then on duty in Louisiana and Texas until near the close of the 
year 1865, when it was mustered out. 

FoKTY-sixTii Infantry 

lu this regiment George M. Doane was assistant surgeon ; Amos Or- 
pit and Taylor Williams served as privates in Company I ; J. C. Moses 
was a sergeant in Company K; Ambrose McVoke held the rank of 
corporal in the same company, in which three iliami county men served 
as privates, viz. : Daniel Clise, A. P. Collins and Francis Wilkinson. 

Fifty-first Infantry 

About two-tliirds of the members of Company G, Fifty-first Regiment, 
came from ^Miami county. William Moorehead, of Peru, was the as- 
sistant surgeon of the regiment. The captains of Company G during 
its term of service were Francis M. Constant, William Wallick and 
Avery B. Charpie ; the first lieutenants were Joseph Y. Ballon, Abra- 
ham G. ]\Iui-ray and John C. Young, and the second lieutenants were 
William Wallick, Jasper ^1. Brown, Avery B. Charpie and Louis P. 
Holman. Elisha Buck held the rank of sergeant; Thomas B. Crooks, 
Willijiiii O. IMper, Francis M. Brown, Calel) Boggs. John W. Crooks, 


Louis P. Holmaii, -losiah .Mutskt'r and Aaron M. Hurtt were corporals, 
and Allen S. Hurtt was a musician. 

Privates — Robert liaker. Suman B. Black, William H. Roling- 
baugh, Thomas R. Holies, William Bolles, William S. Holies. Philander 
Boner, Michael Bowas, Alden W. Bryant, William C. Bryant, John 
Charles, Avery B. Charpie, Hamilton Crouthers, Andrew J. Curtis, 
Daniel Deibert. Wilson Deniston. Francis 'SI. Doles, Alexander Ducan, 
William JI. Dunnui'k, Charles Dyers, Thomas Pawing, Thomas Faley, 
Jonas Foss, Sebastian Furgeson, Jacob Glaze, James Hamlin, Charles 
W, Harper, William S. Harris, Nelson Harvey, Edward Hinds, David 
Holmes, John Holt, Charles L. Hoover, Francis Kaunay, John J, Ken 
nedy, John Kiles, William H. Laretl, John Malone, Conrad Metsker, 
John H. ililler, Francis il. Moody, Francis M, Piper, Henry C. Ritche- 
son, Jeremiah Ritcheson, Andrew J. Trimble, James X. ^I. Tuttle, Alex- 
ander Ward. George W. AVhiteside. John Young. 

Recruits — Alva Copper, George Gardner, William Lang, Henry H. 
Leavell, Stephen C. Leavell, Jacob Simmons. George Sullivan, William 

The Fifty-iirst was organized at Indianapolis in the fall of 1801 and 
was mustered into the United States service on the 1-tth of Decemlier, 
with Abel D. Streight as colonel, A few days later it was ordered 
to Hardstowu, Kentucky, where it remained in a camp of instruction 
until tlie following Fel)ruary. when it moved with Huell's army to 
Nashville. It arrived at Shiloh too late to take part in the battle, but 
was engaged in the siege of Corinth and later in the campaign against 
Bragg in Kentucky. Returning to Tennessee, it was assigned to the 
army commanded by General Rosecrans and participated in the bat- 
tle of Stone's River. It was then on the famous Streight raid through 
Alabama and Georgia, which ended with the capture of Straight's force 
near Rome, Georgia. The prisoners were paroled and wei-e in parole 
camp at Indianapolis until November, 1863, when they were exchanged 
and rejoined the army at Nashville, Tennessee. The regiment formed 
part of General Sherman's army in the Atlanta campaign of 1864, 
after which it returned to Tennessee with Genei'al Thomas and took part 
in the battle of Nashville in December. Early in 1865 it was ordered 
to New Orleans and from there to Texas, where it remained on duty 
until mustered out early in the year 1866. 

Seventy-third Infantry 

Five men from :\Iiami county served in this regiment. William H. 
Brenton was assistant surgeon of the regiment from September 27, 1862, 


to March 13, 1863, and llciuy F(>rrell, John T. Hood, James H. Me- 
C'ouiH'll iiiui Janics Yock survi'd as privates in Company H. 

Eighty-seventh Infantry 

Company C of this regiment was raised in Miami county. During 
its term of service Henry Calkins and Milo D. Ellis iield tlie rank of 
captain; the first lieutenants wei'e Milo 1). Ellis, Burr Kussell, John 
Denuith and Irvin Hutchison; tlic second lieutenants were Isaac H. 
Cochran, Burr Ixussell, Klisha Brown and William II. Reyburu. 

At the time the regiment was mustered into service Burr Russell 
was first sergeant; Wiiliam J. Smith, Alexander Keyes, WiUiam H. 
Reyburu and Elisha Brown were the sergeants; John Demuth, Peter 
Keegan, John Hand, Benjamin F. Bowen, George W. Bellew, Noah 
Brewer, John B. Steel and Aaron Cottemiau, corporals; Joseph J. 
Kennedy and Nathaniel York, musicians, and Herman Marshall, 

Privates — Thomas Addington, John Baker, Reyneer Bell, Benjamin 

F. Berry, George N. Beri-y, Martin V. Brown, John F. Busey, Andrew 
P. Clendenin, Charles W. Cochran, Henry Conrad, Philip R. Coon, 
Edward A. Cover, Ezra J. Cypherd, John N. Dangerfield, William De- 
muth. David Deriek, George Derick, David W. Detamore, Solomon 
Donlay, Leander J. Eastridge, Sylvester Edwards, Peter Fisher, James 

G. N. Fites, George Glaze, Joseph Gordon. Christopher Hanks, George 
Hart, AYilliam Haskell, William H. Hawver, Levi IloUingsworth, John 
W. llurlburt, Thomas B. Hurtt, Irwin Hutchinson, Coustantine Keim, 
Israel Keim, John Kepler, Thaddeus Keyes, William Kizer, William 
J. Leffel. William J. Loyd. Asa Marine, Daniel 0. C. Marine, William 
R. JIcBride, Francis AIcGrew, Oscar iMendenhall, James Miller, John 
C. Moore, David Mote, Isaiah J. Newby, Milton B. Parker, Ithamer 
Perkins, ililes C. Petty, Iliram S. Powell, John Ptomey, John A. Reese, 
George Rohbins, li^idin Robbins, William S. Robbins, William J. Saxon, 
Isaiah J. Shaffer, Charles H. Smith, John A. Smith, Valentine Smith, 
Valentine Snyder, John Stitswortli, Henry R. Studebaker, Benson 
Sullivan. John Swoverland, Jo.h'n 11. Walker, Charles F. Wallick, 
Erastus White, William Wickler, Benjamin Williams, Jacob Wissinger, 
Thonuis (i. Wood. Jacob Woolf. Clayborn Wright, Franklin Yike, Ben- 
jamin G. Young, Martin Zimmerman. 

Eleven Miami county men served in ( ■()m])any H. James S. Durett 
was first lieuteimnt of the company; Amos B. Andrews and John W. 
Bownuin were sergeants; George B. Miller was a corporal, and John 
S. Armantrout, David Fires, George King, Simon Lash, Elias West- 
heffer, Jacob Westheffer and Jacob Wilhelm were privates. 


The Eighty-seveuth was orgauized in the Niuth Congressional dis- 
trict and rendezvoused at South Bend. On August 28, 1862, it left 
that place for Indianapolis, where it was mustered in on the 31st, with 
Kline G. Shryock as colonel. The same day it left for Kentucky and 
joined the army under General Buell, taking part in the l)attles of 
Springfield and Perryville. It was then ordered to Tennessee and was 
with General Rosecrans in the Tullahoma campaign, after which it 
participated in the battle of Chickamauga and the fight at ilissionary 
Ridge. In 1864 it was with General Sherman in the Atlanta campaign 
and the celebrated march to the sea. Tlien followed the campaign up 
through the Carolinas and the surrender of General Johnston's army, 
after which the regiment moved to Washington and took part in the 
grand review. It was then ordered to Indianapolis, where it was 
mustered out on June 21. 1865, the veterans and recruits being at that 
time attached to the Forty-second Regiment, wliich was mustered out 
at Louisville, Kentucky, a month later. 

Ninetieth Regiment 

In tliis regiment, which was better known as the Fifth Indiana Cav- 
alry, commanded by Colonel Robert R. Stewart, there were six privates 
credited to iliami county. Joseph ]\Iason and John Morris served in 
Company D ; Samuel Shroyer, Joshua H. Willard and Richard AVilliams 
in Company I ; and William A. Miller in Company K. 

Ninety-ninth Infantry 

Miami county furnished two comjjanies to this regiment — D and 
I. In Company D Josiah Farrar and George W. Norris served as 
captain during the term of service ; John Clifton, George W. Norris and 
John Harvey as first lieutenants; Joachim M. Hamlin, George W. Norris 
and Jacob D. Smith as second lieutenants. Captain Farrar was pro- 
moted to lieutenant-colonel and on May 2, 1865, received his commis- 
sion as colonel. 

George W. Norris was mustered in as first sergeant ; John Harvey, 
Jacob Smith, Ezra Roe and Jacol) E. ]\larsh as sergeants; John C. Mul- 
lett, Zaehariah Gunckle, David Hastings, Edward Piper, Francis 
Litsenberger, Robert Briggs, John R. Love and Oliver Kissman as cor- 
porals; William H. II. Spaulding and Alonzo B. Thorn as musicians, 
and John S. Parr as wagoner. 

Privates — Joseph Adams, Albert Arnold, Henry Barnhart, Joel 
Barnhart, Anthony B. Barron, Francis M. L. Bland, Clinton Cassell, 
Andrew Clayton, Evan I. Colter, John F. Connett, Jonathan Copeland, 


Renard Eaton, Erastus Ellibee, Josiali S. Eply, Isaac Farrar, Lloyd B. 
Farrar, John Frazee, Richard Frazoe, Joseph Fry, Daniel R. Gage, 
George Griffey, Joseph Griffitli, John \V. Grimes, John W. Ilahn, John 
Wesley Hahn, Howard H. Harbor, Andrew Haynes, Reuben Ilaynes, 
Samuel Hitsniiller, .Monroe Holt, Eli Howard, John Huffman, Franklin 
Lavouslier, Riley Liiidsey, Jacob Lininger, Benjamin Litsenl)erger, 
John Loshier, Samuel McCally, Israel Miney, Jefferson Morehead, 
Gideon Pierce, ^'anburen Pierce, David Price, John II. Pringle', Jesse 
Reamer, Thomas Reamer, William Reamer, James Rolston, John Rol- 
ston, Robert Rolston, John Saxton, Henry Shafer, William Shafer, 
John Snider, Rt'uben Snider, John Southerton, Jacob Tritt, William T. 
Tubbs, John Votra, Elwood Ward, William Wcymire, Henry Wilson, 
Robert Wright. 

Recruits — William R. Hayse, Franklin ]\lichae], William W. Pro- 
peek, George N. Stearns. 

The captains of Company I were William V. Powell and Ira B. 
Myers. Captain Powell was promoted to major and on May 2, 1865, 
was commissioned lieutenant-colonel of the regiment, when Lieutenant 
flyers was commissioned captain. The first lieutenants were Ira B. 
Myers and Lemuel U. Powell, and the second lieutenants were James 
15. ^McGonigal and John C. Parks. 

Elmore Warnock was tirst sergeant at the time of muster in ; Lem- 
uel U. Powell and Alfred A. Ream, sergeants; Francis M. Robey, John 
C. Parks, Tom W. Powell, Alexander :\Ie:\Iillers, Rupell Vinedge, 
Daniel Albaugh and Francis M. McGraw, corporals; Aid F. Spaulding 
and Andrew Studebaker, musicians. 

Privates — David Albaugli, Augustus Bradford, John C. Branham, 
Luther Branham, Francis M. Brummett, Joel B. Bryant, Milton Buck- 
ley, Stephen Butler, Joseph Cox, Alexander Cress, Jones R. Daily, 
David Darby, Hugh Devlin, John Dollinger, Thomas Enyart, Abra- 
ham Fadely, Jacob Fike, Jacob B. Foster, Ezra K. Friermood, George 
Friermood, Jacob Friermood, David R. Garrett, John Garsar, John T. 
Graft, John S. Hamer, Jonathan Hettinger, George Iloyle, Solomon A. 
Landers, Henry C. Lindley, Jeremiah F. Long, Francis C. McGraw, 
John Maple, Allen S. Meeks, James Morris, William Musselman, 
Dennis O'Connor, Ephraim Perkins, Perry A. Powell, Isaac Reeee, 
John Recce, ^Michael Reeee, Andrew P. Robey, John Rust, Philip 
Sallie, Martin L. Scott, William N. Severance, David Shin, Solomon 
Shrock, Calvin Spurgeon, David Still, Jefferson Sullivan, Daniel Sum- 
mers, Benjamin B. Taggart, John N. Troost, James N. Tuttle, William 
C. Warnock, John Weeks, Jacob M. Wethrow, Abraham Whistler, 
Leander Wilson, William Wilson, David E. Windsor, George Wolf. 


01' the recruits added to this coinpany Ahuer 1). Kimball was the 
only one credited to Miami county. 

The Niuety-ninth Infantry was recruited in the months of August 
and September, 1862. in the Ninth Cougressional district, and was mus- 
tered into the service of the United States on October 21, 18ti2, with 
Alexander Fowler as colonel. Soon after it was mustered in it was 
ordered to Jlemphis, Tennes.see, and its first actual service was in the 
Tallahatchie campaign. It remained in Tennessee until May 6, 1863, 
when it was ordered to join the army under General Grant for the 
siege of Vicksburg, ancl was engaged in the liattles of Jackson and the 
Big Black river. For some time it was then employed in destroying the 
railroad lines in Mississippi, after which it marched to Chattanooga 
with General Sherman and took part in the battle of Missionary Ridge. 
In 1864 it took jiart in the Atlanta campaign, was with Sherman in the 
march to the sea, and was one of the regiments that made the .assault 
on Fort McAllister, which surrendered after a hand to hand fight, thus 
opening Sherman's comnumications with the fleet lying off the const 
at the mouth of the Savannah river. It was next in the campaign 
through the Carolinas, then went to Washington, where it was mustered 
out on June 5, 1865. During its service the Ninety-ninth marched 
over 4,000 miles. It entered the service with 900 men and was nuis- 
tered out with only 425. 

Minute Men 

In the summer of 186.3 the celebrated Confederate guerrilla chief- 
tain. General John Morgan, started, upon a raid through the Northern 
States, especially Indiana and Ohio. On July 8. 1863, Governor Mor- 
ton issued a call for thirteen regiments of "Minute Men" to defend 
the state against invasion of the raiders. One of these regiments was 

One Hundred .4Nd Ninth Inp.\ntry 

J\Iiami county was prompt to respond to the call of the governor 
and furnished two companies — D and F — to this regiment. Of Com- 
pany D, Joseph Y. Ballon was captain ; John C. Belew. first lieutenant ; 
Ira B. Stevens, second lieutenant. The noncommissioned oiificers were: 
George I. Reed, first sergeant; John Leslie, John Morris. David Wool- 
pert and Eliphaz Burnett, sergeants; Richard Butt, Washington Cover, 
Harrison Gibbert and James il. Y^oung, corporals. 

Privates — Alpheus Armfield, John Berchert, George Bish. Samuel 
Bigelow, William Bouton, Moses Burnett, Benjamin K. Butt, William 


Charles, Christopher Cool, Alfred Cover, Edward A. Cover. Oliver P. 
Cover, John Cyphers, James 1. Davis, Lewis A. M. Edwards, Augustus 
E. Fites, Edward O. Files, Thomas Garliughouse, Ikuajah Gier, Harri- 
son Griffith, Walter H. Hurlbut, Joseph Jamison, Levi Karnes, Henry 
Laiidis, Clark Latley, Elisha W. Lawrence, John W. Long, Joseph 
Losey, James H. Love, George A. Martiudale, Ira Mason, Joseph ^led- 
sker, Joseph. Morris, Thomas Morris, William A. Mote, Amos Murphy, 
John .Murphy, Jr., Johnson Murphy, Elias Olinger, John Olds. John 
Piper, Lewis Piper, Abner S. Sanders, George A. Sehlott, John Sliiie- 
mau, John Small, Miller Smith, Charles W. Strange, Henry Sullivan, 
Henry Webber, Samuel Woolpert, Abner A. Wright, Henry Yeik, 
Elisha Young. 

Company F was officered by WiUiam B. Reyburn, captain; Jonas 
Hoover, first lieutenant; William F. M. Wallick, second lieutenant; 
Franklin S. Foote, first sergeant; Charles W. Cochran, Henry W. Dei- 
bert. Brown McClintoc and Charles L. Armstrong, sergeants; Lyman 
Walker. Alexander Blake. George N. Osgood and Jeremiah Walliek, 

Privates — Thomas A. Beach, Charles Bearss, Frank Bearss, Oliver 
J. Bearss. Oraer D. Bearss, Charles J. Bechtol, Joseph F. Beckwith, 
Whitman S. Benham, Frank J. Blair, Edward E. Bowman, Louis F. 
Bowman, Milton Buckley, Moses F. Burnett, B. K. Butt, Robert W. Butt, 
Alvin B. Charpie, Christopher Cool, Alfred Coon, Francis M. Cook, 
John II. Constant, David Copley, Edward A. Cover, Oliver P. Cover, 
William A. Cover, Theodore Ci-istie, Lafayette Day, Frank Deibert, 
John Dilley, William Douglass, Thomas R. Ellis, Louis A. M. Edwards, 
"Laban Falk, H. Smith Farnham, Samuel L. Fisher, Anthony Finley, 
Richard F. Graham, Edward Gray, Charles E. Griggs, William B. 
Hank, Plum Hanson, Carter B. Higgins, Paul S. Hunt, Henry Jami- 
son, Frank Kennedy, 0. P. Kingsbury, Henry Landis, Oliver II. P. 
Maey, Henry Mack, John Matthews, Lot Metz, Henry D. Moore, Wil- 
liam ilorehoad, Samuel Morehead, Burk Morse, William Mote, Charles 
Murden, Newton J\lyers, John Old, Jacob C. Rader, Thomas J. Ray- 
bell, George W. Reeder, Walter S. Reyburn, James Rhidenour, Wil- 
liam H. Roberts, Isaac A. Roode, Francis M. Smith, Oliver H. Squires, 
John Stradley, Alvin B. Stutesman, Charles Tice, Warren Thomas, 
George Towers, Charles Utley, Robert Vance, William T. Vandorn, 
Benjamin Wallick, Christopher Wallick, Wesley Wallick, Edward T. 
Weekly, William Wilds, Charles A. Wilson, Basset Wost. 

The regiment was mustered in at Indianapolis on July 10, 1863, 
only tW'O days after the call for troops was issued by the governor, 
w'ith 709 men, rank and file, and John R. Mahan as colonel. On the 


13th it left Indianapolis by rail for Hamilton, Ohio, and from that 
city proceeded to Cincinnati, where it remained until after the cap- 
ture of Morgan near New Lisbon, Ohio. As this event ended the 
emergency for which the Minute Men were called out, the regiment 
returned to Indianapolis and was there mustered out on the 17th, 
having been in the service of the United States just one week. 

One Hundred and Twenty-seventh Regiment 

This regiment was known as the Twelftli Indiana Cavalry. Miami 
county furnislied all of Company L and twenty-four men for Com- 
pany M. Orris Blake, of I\Iiami county, who entered the service as 
captain of Company A. Eighth Cavalrv, was made ma.jor of the regi- 
ment, and William Pew became adjutant. The commissioned officers 
of Company L were: Ethan E. Thornton, captain; Joseph Y. Ballon 
and George X. Osgood, first lieutenants ; George N. Osgood, J. M. Houk 
and James Highland, second lieutenants. On May 1, 1865, Lieutenant 
Ballou received his commission as captain of Company M and George 
N. Osgood was promoted to first lieutenant. 

Privates — Henry E. xVdams, George W. Armstrong, Harrison Ainu- 
strong, Samuel Benner, William Berktoll, John Blackburn, George 
Bosh, Reuben K. Brower, William Buckley, William A. Bunger, John 
W. Burk, Uriah Burk, Eliphaz C. Burnett, Samuel N. Burnett, Benjamin 
Butt, Silas C. Calvin, Thomas E. Cassingham, George W. Chalk, John L. 
Chalk. Eli Chichester, Sanniel L, Clark, Henry Clayton, William II. Cline, 
John Clutter, Zachariah Correll, James Davis, Peter Demoss, Uriah Derek, 
Leroy P. Donaldson, Charles N. Duncan, William Dunnuck, Pleasant 
Ellison, James D. Flint, Joel Flora, James Foster, George AV. Geiger, 
John H. Geiger, Jacob C. Hatton, James Hilands, David A. Ilobaugh, 
Johnson il. Houk (promoted second lieutenant), Lorenzo D. Jerkins, 
John Karr, Albert E. King, Daniel N. Lambert, Isaac Lambert, Wil- 
liam Lane, William W. Lane, Elisha Larance, Simon P. Larh, Clark 
Latta, Russell R. Leonard, John W. Lesley, Marion F. Linn, George 
D. Losher, James ]McCalla, Samuel J. McDonald, George W. ilarshall, 
John Marshall. Ira W. Mason, Albert P. Miller, Arthur O. Miller, 
John L. ]\Iiller, Thomas C. Miller, Joseph F. Mobery, George Morriuett, 
William ]\Iorricay, Jeremiah Morrisey, Edmund B. Morse, Franklin 
Moyer, James M. Newman, John F. Nixon, Joseph A. Norris, George 
K. Owens, William Pew (promoted adjutant of the regiment), James 
Ridenour, Josephus K. Robey, James Sebring. Ira Shadinger, West- 
ley JI. Smith. George Stayley, Charles W. Strayer, Napoleon B. 
Strayer, John Strohn, Dallas Taggart, Joseph R. Taggart, Nixon S. 
Teal, Benjamin F. Thomas. Charles C. Tice, John C. Veil, Jacob W. 


AVai-uer, Harvey Wayinirc, John \V. West, Nalhaniel Wilkeyson, John 
W. Willison, George W. Wilson, Samuel S. Wilson, Charles Wolpert, 
Granville A. Zook. 

Reeruits — John P. Hrown, William J. liurnett, Benjamin F. Davis, 
William W. Davis, Abiam Dispenett, George II. Diila, John H. Mor- 
ris, Ezra II. Murray, Alonzo Richardson. 

The Miami county men who enlisted in Company .AI. were as fol- 
lows: James S. Bradley, Jacob Brumbaugh, Washington Brumbaugh, 
John W. Duck, George W. Fisher, George W. Goodwin, John Ilandlin, 
George W. Kelley, Ephraim K. Loux, John Lyuam, Jolui ^McCurdy, 
John X. McCurdy, Elias Main, Jonathan H. Main, Valentine Swortz, 
William Shiiikle, Alonzo Todd, Rantlolph Trinkle, Charles Volk, Wil- 
liam White, Ezra Willcox, Martin Willeox, John Wiiley, Henry W. 

The regiment was organized at Kendallville and was mustered in 
on March 1, 1864, with Edward Anderson as colonel. At first only 
six companies were mounted. Soon after being mustered in the com- 
mand was oi-dered to Nashville and the mounted companies had numer- 
ous skirmishes with guerrillas, the unmounted men being employed 
in guarding railroads. In September, 1864, the regiment was placed 
at Tullahoma as a garrison for the post. While here the men were 
several times engaged with the Confederate cavalry under Forrest. 
About this time Colonel Anderson was ordered to Indiana on special 
service and Jlajor Blake assumed command. In February, 186.5, the 
Twelfth, all mounted, was sent to New Orleans and from there to 
Mobile, Alabama, where it was actively engaged in the operations 
against the defenses of the city. After the surrender of Mobile the 
regiment, still commanded by ]\Iajor Blake, was ordered to Columbus, 
Mississippi. General (irierson wrote to Governor Morton that the 
Twelfth Indiana Cavalry was one of the best regiments in the service. 
The regiment was on detached duty in Mississippi until mustered out 
at Vieksburg on November 10, 1865. 

One Hundred .\nd Twenty-eighth Inf.\ntry 

I\Iianii county furnished six men for this regiment, viz.: James 
Duncan, George S. Evans, Israel Leedy and Richard K. :Miller. of 
Company I, and William H. Murray and Joseph N. Oliver, of Com- 
pany K. On aiarch .1 1864, Richard K. :Miller was commissioned cap- 
fain of Company I, having previously served as ad.iutant of the regi- 
ment. Subsequently he was promoted to ma.ior and lieutenant-colonel, 
and at the close of the war was brevetted colonel "for gallant and mer- 
itorious services." 


One Hundred and Thirtieth Infantry 

In this regiment there were likewise six Miami county men, all 
privates. Josiah Bryant and Milton Young served in Company E, and 
William Gates, Jacob Hullinger, Charles Lancaster and Albert Per- 
kins in Company G. 

The One Hundred Days' Men 

In the spring of 1864, when, the general advance upon the Confed- 
erate positions was contemplated, it was seen that more men would be 
essential to the success of the Union arms. To meet this emergency a 
meeting of the governors of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa and "Wisconsin 
was called at Indianapolis for April 22, 1864, by Governor ilorton. 
At this meeting the plan of raising some 85,000 men in the states 
named, to serve for one hmidred days, was adopted. President Lin- 
coln approved the idea and the work of recruiting the troops was 
commenced, with the understanding that the short term regiments were 
to be used to relieve the veterans in the garrisons and acting as guards 
in the rear of Grant's and Sherman's armies. The first of the one 
hundred days' regiments in which Miami county was represented was 

One Hundred and Thirty-fourth Infantry 

In this regiment a considerable part of Company K was raised in 
Miami county. Alexander Jameson was commissioned second lieu- 
tenant, but was not mustered, and Isaac J. C. Guy took his place. 

Privates — Ezekiel Alberry, Oliver Armantrout, John Beecher, 
Daniel Blackburn, James Clemens, John Coburn, John Cover, Ephraiui 
Crider, Albert Dowd, Alexander Dui¥, Isaac J. C. Guy, Irwin Hagy, 
William Hardin, Solomon Jameson, Samuel McElwee, George Martin- 
dale, Joseph Munger, Andrew J. Parks, John Small, Lewis Small, 
Samuel W. Tracy, Leander B. Watson. Samuel Woolpert. 

One Hundred and Thirty-eighth Infantry 

In this regiment, which was also raised for the one hundred days' 
service. Company A was recruited in Miami county. Of this com- 
pany Jonas Hoover was captain; Wesley Wallick, first lieutenant; 
Henry D. Moore', second lieutenant, and following is a list of the 

Privates — Jacob Adams, Samuel S. Barker. Joseph Beekwith, Wil- 
liam H. Bell, John H. Bigger, William T. Black, Lewis Bowman, John 
F. Branaman, John Brandenburg, Allen S. Brown, Levi Brown, John 


\V. Hmkc, -laiiii'.s \V. Burnett, Henry Caple, Addison Charpie, William 
A. Clerry, James A. Couger, Eli Condo, Charles J. C'ook, Albert Cope- 
land, Asbury Crabb, Charles V. Crider, David W. Curtis, James il. 
Deniston, Jat-ob Easterday, John Ewiug, Jacob Preeston, Skillman 
Fanslcr, Edward Farnham, George W. Fisher, Patrick Fitz, William 
Hahn, Franklin Hall, Henry A. Harger, Orlando Harlen, Lester Has- 
kill, William D. Hate, Calvin Herrell, Albert A. Jenkins, Emmett D. 
Johnson, Chai-les Jones, James Keudricks, Andrew J. Kennedy, John 
W. Kiser, Alvin 1). Koontz, Christopher Krider, Philip Larne, Oliver 
Layton, William F. Lesley. Henry A. Loore, George McConnell, John 
E. Matthews, James T. ilendenhall, James Merchant, George L. Mil- 
ler, Eugene A. Moore. Ezra H. Murry, Isaac N. Murry, Michael N. 
Musselman, William G. Moore, John W. Nelson, Columbus Osborn, Lyman 
Parks, David H. Proctor, John Reader, Thomas E. Ream, Jefferson 
Reybeil, Walter S. Reybnrn, Jay Slater, Daniel Stetler, Solomon Stout, 
John G. Stradley. Nathaniel J. Troast, Stephen Ullum. Joseph Van- 
dorn, John W. Walliek, John Ward. Oliver H. Webb, George Wiekler, 
Charles A. Willson. 

One Hundred and Thirty-ninth Infantry 

Seven Miami county men enlisted in Company A of this regiment, 
which was mustered in for one hundi-ed days on June 8, 1864. with 
George Hum])hrey as colonel. They were Stephen Byers, Harvey H. 
Curtis, James H. Daggy, Newton Hoover, Reese H. Jones, Samuel C. 
Mnrjihy and Fiidey Rarydon. 

One Hundred and Forty-second Infantry 

This regiment was mustered in on November 3, 1864, for one year, 
with John ]\l. Comparet as colonel. In Company I. Alexander G. 
Saxon, a Miami county man. was corporal, and the following privates 
were credited to the county : Nathan Addington, Thomas A. Danger- 
field, John (iorstine, John E. Grant, Cornelius Jarvis, Flavius J. 
Massey, Leroy S. Marine, Henry S. Parker, William R. Parker, Albert 
Reynolds, Heuston Sullivan, all from Xenia (now Converse). 

In Company K. Chai-les E. Davis and Richard Phipps were enrolled 
as corporals; John Lai'ven as nuisician ; Riley Clark, George W. Clif- 
ton, John C. Clifton, John Dailey, Joseph Dickerson, William J. Edmund, 
Benjamin Huff. William B. Miner, George C. Petty, James J. Purnell, 
Christopher ('. l{ood and Charles Williams as privates. 

Soon after being mustered in the regiment was ordered to Tennes- 
see. At the battle of .\a.shville, December 15-16, 1864, it was held in 


reserve, many of the members being disapi)oiuted at not being per- 
mitted to take part in the tight. After that battle the regiment was 
kept on duty in and around Nashville until mustered out on July 14 

One Hundred and Fifty-first Infantry 

This was one of the regiments recruited under the president's call 
of December 19, 1864. It was mustered in at Indianapolis on March 
3, 1865, for one year, with Joshua Ilealy as colonel. Companies C and 
D were raised in Miami county and the county was also represented 
in Companies H and I. 

The ofiScers of Company C were: William A. Nichols, captain; 
Isaac J. C. Guy, first lieutenant; William A. Vance, second lieutenant; 
Thomas B. Cade, first sergeant; Samuel C. Jones, James S. Parker, 
William Pence and Francis B. Showers, sergeants; James H. Love, 
Harvey Conner, John Martindale, John Beecher, Charles W. Love, 
Adam W. Smith, Newton W. Tanquary and Mitchell M. Dukes, cor- 
porals; Britton E. Lamborn and Charles Osborn, musicians; Silas E. 
Shoemaker, wagoner. 

Privates — Ezekiel Alberry, Peter Arniantrout, Columbus Balti- 
more, Eli Benzinger, Paris A. Brandon, Joseph A. Braziugton, Absa- 
lom Burnett, Thomas Carson, Harvey H. Curtis, Joseph W. Darby, 
David A. Ewing, John Fair, William J. Fansler, James H. Fear, 
Jolm W. Fetrow, John S. Filbert, Harvey Flagg, Sidney Flagg, Ben- 
jandn Grimm, Thomas M. Hamblin, Jolm B. Hatfield, Harvey Ilauk, 
Jesse Hickman, John Hickman, Samuel B. Holt, Jeremiah Holtry, 
Alexander Hoover, Allen Hoover, Andrew Hoover, Samuel Hoover, 
Joshua Howell, David M. Hutton, Benjamin Jarnagin, Alvarian Jones, 
Joseph R. Jones, Reese H. Jones, William H. Keyes, Stephen A. King, 
Alpha Kiser. Benjamin Kotterman, Ezekiel D. Kyle, Boyd Ladd, Har- 
vey H. Larimer, Jacob W. Larimer, Jacob B. Leese, Samuel Lowman, 
John Mansfield, Henry Marshall, Samuel C. Marshall, Oliver E. Mason, 
Joseph Monger, Alfred W. Morris, Carvil A. Morris, Thomas E. Morris, 
Jeremiah Morrisey, Moses J. Murphy, Samuel C. Murphy, Thomas Mur- 
ray, Lewis Myers, Charles Newton, John Nieman, Isaac D. Norris, 
Benjamin Parker, John P. Powell, Thomas Powell, Finley W. Rarideu, 
Lemuel Reed, Miles Rhodes, Redin Rollins, John H. Shanks, Samuel 
H. Slaughter, Jasper D. Smith, John Spurgeon, Solomon Stout, Ste- 
phen H. Terhune, Joseph Townsend, William Wallick, George Weber, 
Elisha West, Wiley T. White, Peter Woolpert, Samuel Woolpert, 
Francis Zook. 

Company D was oflScered by Nathan Stephens, captain; John H. 


Morgau, tii-st lifutcnant ; Aiulri'w J. Haines and Thomas K. Ellis, sec- 
ond lieutenants, the last named having been promoted from first ser- 
geant. William B. Owens. Reuben II. Mohley, Francis M. Cook and 
Ephrainj L. Ci'idci' were the company's sergeants; Daniel Sturgis, 
David \V. Jones, Allen McGnire, Abner L. Willis, (ieorge W. Cones, 
William B. Cook, William H. Jliller and Robert M. Brooks, corporals; 
Harrison E. Reese, musician, and Perry Akeberger, wagoner. 

Privates — Lucas A. Adams, Henry Althaver, Matthew Anacher, 
Christojiher Arnedt, Samuel K. Barker, John C. Bell, John Berry, 
Joseph Billhimer, Daniel Blackburn, John Blankenship, George W. 
Blue. Charles E. Boilurtha. Jeremiah Burnett, Henry Caple, Jules 
Catin, Peter Click, George AY. Coleman, John V. Colvin, John P. 
Cones, Harrison Connett, Francis Cornell, Jeremiah Cornell, James 
H. Daggy, .Michael Dult'y, John T. Ewing, Stephen Finney, George W. 
Fisher, Samuel Fisher, George Gordon, John II. Griswold, Richard H. 
Groat. Thomas W. Ilakins. Thomas Hamons, James D. Hann, Joseph 
Harding, William Harding, David Harmon, David B. Heaton, Jacob 
Hight, JMark R. Hoover, Jesse H. Hurst, Oliver P. Kotterman. Dennis 
Lee, Reuben Leslie, Martin Lynch, Byron McClure, Thomas Maekel- 
wee, Ben.jamin Miller, ilartin L. Miller, Thomas ilullen, Henry Mur- 
den, Jacob Myers, James M. Okey, Robert C. Owens, Noah F. Packard, 
Layman Parks, Jonas AY. Paul, John Price, William W. Rankins, 
Thomas E. Ream, Andrew Shadinger, George F. Shanaberger, Abra- 
ham L. Shirley, George A. Shlott, John B. Small, Thomas D. Smith, 
Oscar F. Snooks, John M. Stanley, Daniel Stetler, William Stevenson, 
Newton Sweene.y, George H. Swihart, Henry A. Taylor, Thomas C. 
Waite. John W. Wallick, William Walters, George W. Whitne.y, George 
Wickler. Era mis .Al. Wilkins, John F. Wilkins, John Woodburn, Miles 
F. York, Daniel Zigler. 

John II. Ream, of Peru, was captain of Company H, but the rank 
and file of the company came from the counties of Jasper, Starke and 
Xewton. In Company I the following Aliami eount.v men were enrolled 
as privates: Francis N. Holt. Elijah Pond, Nelson Reichard, Silas 
Stewart and Aaron Taumbaugh. 

On March 9, 1865, si.x days after it was mustered in, the regiment 
arrived at Nashville, Teiniessee, where it was assigned to General 
Rousseau's conuiiantl, with which it moved to Tullahoma and remained 
in that vicinity until June. It was thcTi employed in post and garri- 
son duty at Nashville until mustered out on Sei)tember 19, 1865. 

One Hitndred and Fifty-fifth Infantry 

On April 18, 1865, this regiment was mustered into the United 
States service for one year, with John M. Wilson, of Peru, as colonel. 


John W. Smitli was appointed surgeon of the regiment, and Joseph 
A. Chandler and ^lartin B. Arnold served as assistant surgeons. Com- 
pany K was a Miami county company and was of5fieered by Henry D. 
Moore, captain; John H. Jamison, first lieutenant; James Bell, sec- 
ond lieutenant. 

Privates — Robert Anderson, William Andrews, James Bell (pro- 
moted second lieutenant), Edward Berry, Thomas JI. Bitters, Samuel 
L. Black, William T. Black, George W. Books, Aaron Brewer. Walter 

E. Burnham, William Burnett, Richard W. Butt, Thomas Christie, 
James Cottercipy. Alfred Cover, Washington A. Cover, Henry E. 
Daley, James M. Dougherty, William L. Englen, John H. Farnham, 
James Fites, John W. Fites, William Forrey, Charles Grumpp, Fred- 
erick A. Gysin, Benjamin Haun. Samuel Hanu, Granville Harbin, 
Henry Harger, Jonas Harris, Isaac Harter, Marquis Harter. William 
T. Hatfield, Thomas W. Hays, Benjamin Hockstettler, Harman Hoover. 
Michael W. Hurst, Perry Jenness, Andrew J. Kennedy, Jacob King, 
John V. Kling, John Logan, William Long, Elias il. Lowe, William H. 
II. Murry, Samuel S. Patton, Daniel R<^eder. John C. Reyburn. George 

F. Robertson, Wadsworth Roe, Ferdinand Roser, John Schneider, John 
P. Shannon, John Shepherd, William Shepherd, Alfred Sliively, 
Philip Shively. Obadiah Shively. Finley il. Shaffer, John Steward, 
James Sweat, Steward E. Tail, James D. Townsend, Robert Vance, 
John P. Vandeventer, Joseph Vandoren, John Ward, George Williams, 
George Witham, Jesse C. P. Wood, Samuel Yard, Jasper N. Yates. 

The, regiment proceeded to AVashington almost as soon as it was 
mustered in and from Washington was sent to Alexandria, Virginia. 
There it was assigned to the Provisional Brigade. Thiixl Division. Ninth 
Army Corps, and performed post and guard duty until ordered liack to 
Indiana. Some of the companies were on detached duty in Delaware 
and two of these, while returning to the regiment, were in a railroad 
accident, in which several of the men were severely injured. These 
were the only casualties suffered by the regiment. It was mustered 
out at Indianapolis on September 1, 1865. 

Fourteenth Battery 

The Fourteenth Battery, Light Artillery, was recruited in Miami, 
Wabash, Huntington and Fayette counties and was mustered in at 
Indianapolis on March 24, 1862, with Meredith H. Kidd, as captain. 
H. C. Loveland, of ^Miami county, was second lieutenant; James P. 
Chandler, sergeant; Thomas H. Wibel, corporal; and the following 
members of the battery were credited to Miami county : William 
Baker, William Bartholomew, James Cauger, Henry Coleman, Dewitt 

HISTOK'Y OF .Ml.\:\ll CorXTV 233 

C. Goodrick, .Jolni S. Hill, I'^phiaiiii Hale, .laiiii's H. Jones, Tlioiiias P. 
Kiser. Byron Latta. John li. Lane. William H. Moore, Samuel M. 
ilorehead, William B. Morehead, John P. ^Myers, John Q. Neal. John 
W. Pier, Planson Phnnmer, John W. Plummer, Amos Rolland, Charles 
R. Sayles, Thomas F. Stanley, Charles W. Utley. 

From Indianapolis the battery proceeded to Pittsburg Landing, 
Tennessee. It then took part in the siege of Corinth, Mississippi; 
formed part of General Sherman's force in the raid to Meridian; after 
which it operated around Vicksburg, Memphis, Guntown and Nash- 
ville, and aided in the rctluetion of Spanish Fort at iMobile. It was 
mustered out on August 2fl, 1865. 

Miscellaneous Enlistments 

In addition to the ]\Iiaini rouiity volunteers mentioned in the fore- 
going companies and regiments, there were a number of men who 
served in other commands. Allen Daggy was a private in Company C, 
Thirt.v-fifth Infantr.v ; Reuben 0. Small served in Company I, One 
Hundred and First Infantry, and Walcut Tuttle in Company K of the 
same regiment; in the One Hundred and Twenty-sixth Regiment 
(Eleventh Cavalry), Felician Clove, William Elshire and John Way- 
mire, of Company L, were credited to ]\riami county; James Howell 
and Valentine Perkins were privates in Company B, One Hundred and 
Forty-seventh Infantr.v, and James A. Lucas was a member of Com- 
pan.v F, of that regiment ; and the names of Simon Clevenger and 
David "SI. Darby, of Xenia, appear on the muster rolls of the Twelfth 
Indiana Battery. 

In the Fourth Heav.v Artillery. ITuited States Colored Troops, the 
following men were credited to Miami county: William Allen, Frank 
Brooks. Charles Clark, David Harris, John Hart, Peter Hicks, Albert 
Ilorton, John Nelson, Washington Paddy, Dick Richardson, Powell 
Richardson, John Robinson, Henry Thompson, Amos Walk, William 
W^alker and Nelson W^illiams. 

The First Ignited States Veteran Volunteer Engineers was organ- 
ized under an act of Congress, approved Ma.v 20, 1864, and was under 
command of Colonel William E. Merrill. Miami county was repre- 
sented in six companies of this organization — A, B, D, E, F and H. In 
Company A. Allen S. Ilurtt was quartermaster sergeant, and Thomas 
B. Hurtt was artificer; in Company B were George T. Lamborn and B. 
nil], the latter the artificer of the company; in Company D, George W. 
Allen was a private; in Company E were three men from Miami 
county — f]lisha S. Buck, sergeant ; John Kites, artificer, and Daniel 
F. Deibert. pi'ivatc : Patrick Murt, of Peru, was the artificer in Com- 
pany F, and P^rancis McGrew was a private in Company H. 


111 the adjutaiit-geiierars reports sometimes the entire muster roll 
of a company appears without the residences of the members being 
given. It is quite probable that some of the men thus enrolled should 
be credited to IMiami county, but after half a century or more has 
passed it would be almost impossible to distinguish which ones should 
be so credited. It is also true that men from this county enlisted in 
companies organized in other counties, but it is doubtless equally true 
that in the foregoing lists are some who came from other counties and 
enlisted in Miami. The spelling of the names in the rosters given above 
is the same as that found in the reports of the adjutant-general. No 
doubt that in .some instances the names are not spelled as they should 
be. but it was deemed best to follow literally the official reports without 
attempting any changes, except in rare cases where there was unques- 
tionably a typographical error. 

The Indi.\na Legion 

The special session of the legislature in 1861 passed an act "for 
the organization and regiilation of the Indiana militia." Under the 
provisions of this act four eoiiipauies of the "Indiana Legion," some- 
times called the "Home Guards," were organized in Miami county. 
They were the iliami Guards, James Highland, captain ; Thomas R. 
Ellis, first lieutenant ; John Pearson, second lieutenant. The ]\Iortou 
Rangers, Thomas P]. Cassingliam and James W. Campbell, captains; 
Alexander Stanley and Lucas A. Adams, first lieutenants; Thomas R. 
Ellis, second lieutenant. The Union Guards. Joseph Y. Ballon and 
Daniel Griswold, captains; James L. Wilson, first lieuteuact; John 
Lesley and Daniel Harter, second lieutenants. The Wheatville Guards, 
John Old, captain: AVashington A. Cover, first lieutenant; R. W. Butt, 
second lieutenant. These companies were never called into the field, 
but the muster rolls of other organizations show that a large number 
of the original home guards enlisted for actual service and were mus- 
tered into the service of the United States. 

The Roll of Honor 

Of the volunteer soldiers who went out from IMianii county to do 
battle for their country, 190 never returned. The adjutant-general's 
report show that of those who died while in the service 52 wei-e killed 
in action; 18 died of wounds; 5 are known to have died while held 
as prisoners of war; and 115 died of disease. These figures are doubt- 
less incomplete, as in the reports, opposite the names of a number of the 
men, is that mysterious and discouraging legend "Unaccounted for." 


Some of the men thus reported aiterward returned to their homes, but 
from others no tidings were ever received. They probably died in the 
enemy's country, perhaps in prison, and their renuiins rest in some 
unmarked grave. These "unaccounted for" are entitled to a place 
upon the county's "Roll of Honor." 

The Woiuc at Home 

Wiiile the "Boys in Blue" were at the front, the people at home 
were not unmindful of their patriotic sacrifice and the necessities of 
their wives and children. During the war the commissioners of Miami 
county authorized the payment of $281,650 for soldiers' bounties; 
.$44,890.86 for the relief of soldiers' families, and $4,800 for miscel- 
laneous expenses in connection with the recruiting and equipping of 
troops, making a total of $331,340.86 expended by the county in its 
official capacity. These figures may be obtained from the public rec- 
ords, but there is no record of the relief given by the people of the 
county in their individual capacity. Many a sack of flour, many a 
basket of provisions, numerous sums of money, bundles of clothing or 
school books found their way to the home of some soldiers' wife, that 
her children might be made comfortable and enabled to attend school. 
If the value of all these voluntary offerings could be ascertained it 
would probably aggregate as much as the official appropriations of the 
county. And it is greatly to the credit of these noble women that they 
were not too proud to accept these offerings of charity. Even cast off 
clothing was received by them without the feeling that it was reflec- 
tion upon their poverty, but rather a grateful recognition on the part of 
some loyal neighbor of the sacrifice they had made by sending the 
ones they loved best to preserve the institutions the founders of the 
republic established. 

There is one fact in coiuiectioii with Miami county history during 
the Civil war period that has never been sufficiently emphasized. In 
connnon with most of the other counties of the state, there was some 
disloyal sentiment in Miami. But from the records of the provost mar- 
shal general it may be seen that, when drafts were ordered to fill the 
quota of enlistments, not a single citizen of the county left his home 
to avoid the draft. Only a few counties in the state have such a 

Spanish-American War 

For four centuries after the discovery of America the island of 
Cuba was a Sparush dependency. An expedition for the liberation of 
the Cubans was projected by Narcisso Lopez in 1850, l)ut it ended in 

236 IllSTOKV OF .MlA.Ml CUl.NTV 

a iniseratile failure. Four years later the Cuban junta in New York 
organized a relief laoveuient upon a larger scale, but before anything 
definite could be done news of the scheme reached the Spanish govern- 
ment and the undertaking was forestalled. In 1868 there was a gen- 
eral insurrection among the Cubans, which was followed by a ten years' 
war. During that time Spain sent over 100.000 troops to the island to 
overcome the revolutionists, and at the end of the war the inhabitants 
of the island were cruelly informed that they would have to pay the war 
debt of some $200,000,000. This started another revolution, but this 
time the Cubans moved slowly, making careful preparations, and it was 
not until February, 1895, that an open insurrection broke out in the 
provinces of Santiago, Santa Clara and .Matanzas. Within sixty days 
50,000 Spanish soldiers were in Cuba, under command of General 
Campos. He was succeeded by (Jeneral Weyler, whose cruelties aroused 
the indignation of the civilized nations of the world and forced the 
Spanish government to send General Blanco to take his place. Although 
the new commander was less inhuman than his predecessor, he was 
equally determined in his intention to subdue the islanders and compel 
them to continue under Spanish rule. 

In the meantime legislative bodies and iiolitical conventions in the 
United States had been passing resolutions asking this government to 
recognize the belligerent rights of the Cubans, if not their absolute 
independence. About ten o'clock on the evening of February 15, 1898, 
the United States battleship Maine, then lying in the harbor of Havana, 
was blown up and a number of her crew were killed. This brought the 
excitement in the United States to fever heat and on April 11, 1898, 
President McKinley sent a special message to Congress, asking for 
authority to intervene in behalf of the people of Cuba. On the 20th 
Congress passed a resolution, which was approved by the president 
the same day, recognizing the independence of Cuba and demanding 
that Spain withdraw all claims to and authority over the island. Five 
days later war was formally declared by Congress, though two days 
before the declaration the president proclaimed the ports of Cuba in a 
state of blockade and called for 125,000 volunteers to enforce the reso- 
lution of Congress. 

Late on the afternoon of April 25, 1898, Governor Jam'es A. Mount 
received notice by telegraph from the seci'etary of war that Indiana's 
quota of the 125,000 volunteers would be four regiments of infantry 
and two light batteries of artillery. The telegram further stated that 
it was the wish of the president "that the regiments of the National 
Guard, or state militia, shall be used as far as their numbers will 
permit, for the reason that they are armed, equipped and drilled." 


Instead of foiif regiments, tlie state raised five, whii-li were numbered 
to befriti whci'c tbe Civil war nuiiil)ers left off. Tbe Indiana regiments 
in the Spanish-American war were therefore llie I'jTth, 158th, 159th, 
160th and 161st. 

"With tli(> same spirit of patriotism that aetuated the peo])le of 
Miami county at tlie beginning of the Civil war. a meeting was called 
at the court-house in l\'ru for the evening of April 20, 1898, the same 
day Congress jiassed the I'csolution i-eeognizing the independence of 
Cuba and five days befoi-e the formal dechiration of war with Spain, 
to discuss the situation and take sndi ai'tion as might be deemed neces- 
sary. Hon. .Tames F. Stutesman called the meeting to order and Judge 
J. T. Cox was chosen permanent ehairnmn. Speeches were made by 
Mr. Stutesman. II. F. I.ovelan,!. W. E. Mowbray, Captain W. H. li. 
Spauldiiig and othei's, all expressing sympathy with the struggling 
(.'ubans and urging the United States to intervene in their behalf. At 
the close of the meeting an oppoit unity was given to those present to 
enroll themselves as members of a military company, which was to be 
tendered to the governor in the event of a call for volunteers. About 
thirty men signed the roll that evening and during the next few days 
the number was increased to over one hundred. On Thursday evening, 
April 28, 1898, these men met and elected H. P. Loveland, captain; 
Milton Kraus, first lieutenant ; and Michael Bearss, second lieutenant. 

Not long after tliis Captain Loveland called on Oovernor Mount and 
tenilered the services of his company. He was informed by the gov- 
ernor that the quota under the first call had been filled by companies of 
the National Guai'd, with a few additional volunteers. The governor 
promised, however, that iliami county shouhi lie among the first to 
be recognized in case a second call was made. A little later, when the 
One Hundred and Sixty-first Regiment was in jirocess of formation, 
Captain Loveland again called on the governor to remind him of the 
promise antl urge the acceptance of the Miami county company. It 
so happened that Comi)any ]\I, of the One Hundred and Sixtieth Regi- 
ment, was organized in Cass county, which is in the same Congressional 
district as Miami, and as there were some of the districts not yet rep- 
resented by any company, the governor insisted that the new regiment 
should lie made up of (companies from these districts. He admitted 
having made the promise to accept the company from Miami county, 
but the fact that the Eleventh district already had one company in 
service caused him to rescind that promise, in order that all parts 
of the state should have representation. Through this combination of 
circumstances, Miami county coidd not "go to war" with a full and 
regularly organized comjiany. though several of her sons served as 
members of other organizations. 


Jacob A. Karu, of Peru, was a sergeant in Company B, One Hun- 
dred and Fifty-eighth regiment, and in the same company Burl R. 
Elsworth, Jerome Landauer, Sanford See and Loren Whitteuburger 
served as privates. Five Miami county men were in the One Hun- 
dred and Sixtieth Regiment : Cliarles M. Wey, in Company B ; Lester 
K. ]Miller, in Company D; Howard O. Powell (corporal), Edward S. 
Baity and John F. ^McLean, in Company K. Jessee ^loutrose was a 
member of Company I, One Hundred and Sixty-first Regiment. In the 
Twenty-eighth Battery of Light Artillery Francis J. Coyle was a cor- 
IJoral ; Silas W. Carpenter, a musician, and Charles Griswold, a private. 

^Militia Companies 

A few years after the close of the Civil war a company called the 
Peru Grays was organized in that city, with J. H. Jack as captain; 
"W. F. Daly, first lieutenant ; Lsaac Bozarth, second lieutenant. Rank 
and file, the company was composed of the best young men in the 
county. On one occasiou this company took an excursion to Put-in- 
Bay and the city of Sandusky, accompanied by the old Howe band, 
and everywhere both the "boys" and the musicians met with a cordial 
reception. In 1876 conditions arose at Seymour, Jackson county, that 
apparently demanded the presenee of the militia and Governor Hen- 
dricks called upon the Peru Grays to report for duty. The company 
went as far as Indianapolis, when it was learned that order could be 
restored without the use of the troops, and after a few days in the 
state capital the Grays returned home. :\lany people criticised the mem- 
bers of the organization for their promptness in obeying the orders of 
the executive, notwithstanding they had taken an oath to do so, and 
in time the dissatisfaction thus engendered resulted in the disbandment 
of the company. 

The Bunker Hill Light Guards was organized on November 7, 1885, 
In- W. W. Robbins, with forty-seven members. The officers of the com- 
pany were W. W. Ro})bius, captain; J. W. Reeder, first lieutenant; J. 
W. O'Hara, second lieutenant. A band of eleven members was organ- 
ized under the leadership of David Long. Captain Robbins afterward 
became a ma.jor in the Indiana National Guard. After a few years the 
novelty of "being soldiers" wore off', the interest in the organization 
waned and in time the company was disbanded. 

In the fall of 1906 a military company was organized at Peru and 
was mustered into the Indiana National Guard as Company L, Third 
Regiment. The offleers at tlie time of organization were E. M. Phillips, 
captain; E. J. Howes, first lieutenant: W. W. Failing, second lieuten- 


ant. Sonu' changes were .suhseiiiK'ntly made in tlie official roster, by 
which Fred Becker became captain and W. W. Failing was promoted 
to first lieutenant. The company's armory on West Third street, 
between Broadway aiul ]\Iiami streets, was destroyed by fire on Janu- 
ary 8, l!)in, and soon after that the organization was disbanded. Upon 
writing to tlic adjutant-general's office for the official I'ccord of this 
company, the following information was received : 

"February lU, 1914. 
"Dear Sii-: — Conii)any L, 'I'liird Infantry, I. N. G., was mustered 
in at Peru, Indiana, October 10, 1906, with Ernest M. Phillips as cap- 
tain ; Earl J. Howes, first lieutenant ; John R. Huber, second lieuten- 
ant. The company was mustered out March 1, 1910, J. Fred Becker 
being captain at mustering out date. The company had no other com- 
missioned officers at tliis time. 

' ' Very respectfully, 

"Frank L. Bridges, 

Ad.iutant-General. ' ' 

Regular Army and Navy 

Several Miami county boys have distinguished themselves in the 
United States army and the navy. Hiram I. Bearss was commissioned 
as second lieutenant about the beginning of the Spanish-American 
war. During that conflict he was promoted to captain for meritorious 
services and later was sent with his regiment to the Philippines, where 
for his bravery on several occasions he was recommended by his superior 
officer. Major Waller, for still further promotion. lie is still in the 

Edgai- Ridenour. in 1898, was appointed a cadet in the United 
States ^Military Academy at West Point, New York. He completed 
the course in that institution and entered the army as a lieutenant. 
He is still in the service and now holds the rank of captain, having 
won his promotion by good discipline and soldierly conduct. 

Edward R. Coppock enlisted from Jackson township in the regular 
army some \ears ago and at the close of the year 1913 was stationed 
at Fort Ethan Allen, Vermont. He has risen to the rank of lieutenant. 

Tw(j biothers, Peter and Otto Ilaughtington. entered the regular 
army as jx'ivates and both served in the Philippines. Otto twice reiin- 
listed and during his last term served in China at the time of the Boxer 
troubles. He rose to the rank of quartermaster sergeant and while in 
the Philippines wrote several interesting letters home, some of which 


were published iu the Peru newspapers. These brothers are uo louger 
in the army. 

Walter Coustaut, a member of one of Miami county's old families, 
attended the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland, 
where he was graduated some time in the '70s. He entered the navy as 
an ensign and rose to the rank of lieutenant, perhaps even higher. 
His death occurred at Yokohama, Japan, in the early '90s and his 
remains were accompanied by a naval escort to Peru, where they were 
interred with military honors. 

Victor S. Jackson, another Miami county boy, is now a paymaster 
in the United States navy, with the rank of lieutenant-commander. 

Hale Stutesmau, a son of Frank M. Stutesman, of Peru, is second 
lieutenant in the Tenth United States Infantry and at the beginning 
of the year 1914 was stationed with his regiment at Panama. Before 
entering the regular army he was graduated at Princeton University. 



First Highways — Tiik Old Stkawtown Road — Rivers as Thorough- 
fares — Wabash & Erie CANAii — Internal Imi-rovement Act op 
1886 — Collapse op the State System op Improvements — Bene- 
fits Resulting from the Canal — Its Final End — Steamboat 
Navigation op the Wabash — The Railroad Era — Lake Erie & 
Western — The Wabash — Pan Handle — The Eel River Railroad 
— Peru & Detroit — Chicago, Indiana & Eastern — Chesapeake 
& Ohio — Electric Line — ^Iiami County's System op Drainage. 

OiU' of the first necessities in the way of internal iniprovenients in a 
new comitrx- is tlie location ami o|)ening of public highways. When the 
first white men came to the reg'ion now comprising Miami county tliere 
was '"not a stick of timber amiss.'' In going from one place to another 
the most direct route was followed, the traveler often referring to a 
small compass to keep him in the right course. Where an old Indian 
trail existed it was used by the early settlers until better roads could be 
opened. The first roads were merely marked by "blazes" on the trees, 
without regard to points of the compass, no mailer how much they 
might interfere with some pioneer farmer's calculations. In after 
years nearly all these old "traces," as they were called, were altered 
and straightened to conform to the section lines of the official survey. 

When the county commissionei's met on the first Monday in Septem- 
l)er. 1834, a petition came before the board asking for the opening of a 
road fi'om Peru to Mexico. .Toseph Clymer, (ieorge Townsend and John 
F. Saunders were ap|)ointed viewers. They reported in favor of the 
petitioners and this was the first road established in Miami county. 

Surveys for state roads were made at an early date. Some of these 

roads were afterwai'd 0])ened and impi'oved, but in a ma.jority of 

instances they were simjily ■'cut out" by the settlers living along the 

route, the state making very little expenditure of money beyond the 

cost of the survey, and in some cases this expense was defrayed by the 

counties through which the road passed. The first road of this character 

in Miami county was the state road from Sti'awtown to ]\Iiamisi)ort. whieli 
Vol. r -1 6 



was authorized by the act of February 1, 1834. Section 1 of that act 
provided that "Jesse Wilson and James Hughey, of the county of Ham- 
ilton, and William Rayburn, of Miami county, be, and they are hereby 
appointed commissioners to view, mark, and cause to be opened a state 
road from Strawtown, in Hamilton county, to Miamisport, in tlie county 
of Miami, near the mouth of the Mississinaway river." 

The commissioners were given power to emplo3' a surveyor and his 
necessary assistants, and to select such route as they deemed best and 
most practicable, the survey to provide for a public highway, not exceed- 
ing thirty-five feet in width. They were required to give bond for the 
faithful performance of duties and to report to the clerks of the counties 
of Miami and Hamilton. In due time the road was opened, though for 
many years it was almost impassable at certain seasons of the year. 

At that time the waterways of the state constituted the main arteries 
of traffic. Strawtown being located near the White river and Miamis- 
port upon the Wabash river, as well as upon the line of the proposed 
Wabash & Erie canal, then under construction, the state road between 
these two points was intended to serve as an outlet for the traders along 
the White river to the Great Lakes, via the canal. 

It would be practically impossible to give a history of each of the 
public highways established by the county authorities. For several years 
after the organization of the county, scarcely a session of the commis- 
sioners was held at whicli there were not introduced petitions asking for 
the opening of roads between certain points. In such cases viewers were 
appointed and upon their favorable report the board would order the 
opening of the road. A few years after the Civil war, the city of Peru 
gave .$40,000 to encourage the construction of gravel roads. This sum 
was divided among four roads, each receiving $10,000. They were the 
old Strawtown & Peru state road and the roads leading from Peru to 
^Mexico, Paw Paw and Xenia. This was the beginning of the good roads 
movement in Miami county. Since that time the work of grading and 
graveling the highways has gone on, from year to year, until most of the 
roads in the county are as good as any to be found in the Wabash valley. 

The C.\nal Era 

During the first twenty years of Indiana's statehood — from 1816 to 
1836 — at nearly every session of the legislature there were introduced 
one or more bills looking toward the establishment of some state system 
of internal improvements. Most of the governors of this period were 
interested in the development of the state's natural resources, and their 
messages to the legislature were replete with recommendations, some of 


wliicli possessed a eertaiii degree of merit, but a majority of them would 
now be regarded as extremely visionary. Governor Ray was particu- 
larly energetic in trying' to secure the enactm(;nt of laws that would 
enable the state to inaugurate and prosecute "a grand system of internal 
improvement to a successful termination, and for the ultimate produc- 
tion of a revenue that shall relieve our fellow-citizens from taxation." 

The prevailing idea at that time seemed to be that water navigation 
was the one thing needed to stimulate commerce and develop the natural 
resources of the state. The first traders along the Wabash, and other 
western rivers, carried their goods in canoes or pirogues. Then came 
the flatboat, by means of whicli cargoes were carried down the Ohio and 
Mississijipi rivers to New Orleans, where the flatboat was sold for what 
it would liring, it being more economical to construct a boat for each 
voyage than to attempt to bring the unwieldy craft up stream. These 
early traders, who carried on their traffic in pirogiies, and the settlers 
around the trading posts, tried to impress congress with the idea that 
the Wabash was navigable to Lafayette, and represented that a canal 
could be constructed from that point to the mouth of the Maumee river 
at comparatively slight expense. It was probalily due to the reports 
circulated by these traders that early gazeteers stated the Wabash river 
to be navigable as far as Huntington and other points above Peru. 

As early as 1822 the states of Indiana and Illinois began to work 
together for the improvement of the Wabash river. A little later the 
subject of connecting the Waltash and Maumee rivers by a canal came 
before the legislatures of Indiana, Illinois and Ohio. About this time 
the first steamboat ascended the Wabash as far as Lafayette and this 
gave a wonderful impetus to the canal project. A commission waa 
appointed to investigate the matter and report to the legislatures of the 
three states as to the feasibility of connecting these states with the Great 
Lakes by a canal or railroad, and which would be the most practicable. 
The conunission rei)orted in favor of the canal, because it could be built 
and operated at less expense than a railroad ; that so far the utility of 
the railroad as a common carrier had not been fully demon.strated, while 
traffic and travel by canal was a certainty, except in extremely cold 
weather, when the ice might interfere with navigation. 

Congress was now overwhelmed with demands for a canal. One 
argument was that it was a military necessity ; that in the event of war 
with another power, troops and munitions could be quickly and cheaply 
moved from the interior to the lakes. By the act of March 2, 1827, 
congress granted to the states of Indiana and Ohio each alternate section 
of land in a strip five miles wide on each side of the canal, which was to 
connect the navigable waters of the Wabash river with Lake Erie, with 


the suggestion that the states supply the rest of the money necessary to 
complete the canal. The land in Indiana thus granted for the purpose 
of building the canal was estimated to be worth $1,250,000. The state 
was a little slow in accepting the grant, but it was finally accepted with 
all the conditions imposed by congress. A land office was opened at 
Fort Wayne and the canal lands were offered for sale at prices ranging 
from .$1.50 to $3.50 per acre, one-fourth cash and the balance in pay- 
ments extending, in some instances, over a period of seventeen years. 
This opportunity to secure good lands, within easy access of a main 
channel of transportation, brought a large number of immigrants to the 
Wabash valley, some of whom settled in what is now Miami county. 

Work on the canal was commenced at Fort Wayne in February, 
1832, under the supervision of a board of canal commissioners. Two 
years later the state of Ohio had done nothing toward building her por- 
tion of the canal, and on February 1, 1834, the Indiana legislature 
adopted a memorial asking the state's senators and representatives in 
congress "to use their influence to secure the passage of an act granting 
to Ohio the permission to select land from the reserves lately acquired 
from the Indians," in lieu of the alternate sections along the line of the 
canal, as contemplated in the original grant. 

The treaty of 1834 was not approved by President Jackson, because 
of the number of individual reservations. In 1837 President Van 
Buren ratified the treaty and the next year Chauncey Carter began the 
surveys. J. L. Williams, then canal commissioner, classified and booked 
the lands in the spring of 1840, preparatory to a sale later in the year. 
That summer the land office was removed from Fort Wayne to Peru and 
was located at the northeast corner of Second and Miami streets. The 
first sale of canal lauds here took place on October 5, 1840, when about 
ten tliousaud acres were sold. The individual reservations interfered 
with the canal grant of every alternate section and the state was given 
the privilege of selecting any unsold government land of equal (luantity. 
The selections were made in 1844 and a public sale was held in the fall 
of that year at the land office in Peru. In July, 1847, the land office was 
removed to Logansport. 

In the meantime the financial condition of the state was thought to 
be such in 1836 as to justify the inauguration of an extensive system of 
public works. Consequently, the legislature of that year passed an act 
authorizing the appointment of a board of internal improvements, to 
consist of six persons to be appointed by the governor, "by and with the 
advice and consent of the Senate and the Canal Commissioners then in 
office." Eight great water and land thoroughfares were specified in the 
bill. Onlv one of these— the extension of the Wabash & Erie canal— 


affected tlio material interests of ^liaiiii eouiity, but the subject is 
deemed of sufficient interest to justify the insertion here of the eutire 
list, in order that the reader may learn what ideas were entertained by 
legishitors three-cjuarters of a century ajro witli regard to the develop- 
ment of the resources of Indiana. The public works proposed liy the 
bill were as follows: 

1. The Whitewater canal, which was to begin on the west branch 
of the \Vhitewater river at the crossing of the national road, and run- 
ning thence down the Whitewater to the Ohio river at Lawreneehurg. 

2. Tile Central canal, "to eoinmenee at the most suitable point on 
the Wabash & Erie canal, between Fort Wayne and Logansport, run- 
ning thence to Muncietown ; thence to Indianapolis; thence down the 
valley of the west fork of the White river to its junction wdth the east 
fork of said river, and thence by the most practicable route to Evans- 
ville, on the Ohio river." 

3. The extension of the Wabash & Erie canal from the inoutli of the 
Tippecanoe river to Terre Haute. 

4. The construction of a railroad from Madison to Indianapolis, via 
Columl)us and certain other points named in the bill. 

5. A macadamized road from New Albany to Vineennes over a 
route touching Fredericksburg. Salem and Paoli. 

6. The construction of a railroad, or, if a railroad was found to be 
inexpedient, a turnpike from Jeffersonville to Crawfordsville. 

7. The imi)rovenu'ut of the Wabash river from Vineennes to the 
mouth of the stream. 

8. A canal from some point on the Wabash & Erie canal near Fort 
Wayne to Lake ^Michigan. 

To carry out the intent of the bill the sum of $10,000,000 was appro- 
priated. Concerning the act Dillon, in his History of Indiana, says: 
"The state system of internal improvement, wliich was adopted by 
Indiana in 18:i6, was not a new measure, nor did the adoption of the 
system at that lime grow^ out of a new and hastj' expression of popular 
sentiment. For a period of more than ten years, the expediency of pro- 
viding by law for the conmiencement of a state systent of public works 
had been discussed before the people of the state l)y governors, legisla- 
tors and distinguished private citizens." 

In this (lisi'ussion the advocates of a .state system of public improve- 
ments did not lack for a jjrecedent. To use a favorite expression of 
political i)latforms, tliey could "iKiint with pride" to the fact thai the 
state of New York had l)uilt the great Erie canal, which was begun in 
1817, and that in ten years the tolls had paid tln' entire cost of construc- 
tion. If a canal in New York liad been such a success, why siiould not 


the state of ludiana profit by that experience? The theory appeared 
to be flawless, but the application of it failed to bring the results antici- 
pated. To quote again from Dillon: 

"In fixing the mode of organizing a state board of internal improve- 
ment, and in defining the duties and powers of this board, the general 
assembly of 1836 committed several material errors. On account of 
these errors, and for other reasons, the internal improvement law of 1836 
encountered a strong opposition ; and this opposition was most marked 
among the people of those counties through which the lines of the pro- 
posed public works did not pass." 

After all, this was only natural. The people of those counties were 
paying taxes to the state, which was using the public revenues to estab- 
lish certain public improvements that gave such counties no direct 
benefit. This opposition, like Banquo's ghost, would not down, and by 
1839 it became so insistent that work upon the internal improvements 
was suspended. In his message to the legislature that assembled in 
December, 1839, Governor Wallace summed up the situation as follows: 

"The failure to procure funds, as we had a right to expect from the 
extensive sale of bonds effected in the early part of the season, has led 
to great and unusual embarrassments, not only among the eonti-aetors 
and laborers, but also among the people. The state has, in consequence, 
fallen largely in debt to the former, and is without means of discharging 
it. . . . What shall be done with the public works ? Shall they be aban- 
doned altogether? I hope not. In my opinion, the policy of the state, 
in the present emergency, should be, first, to provide against the dilapi- 
dation of those portions of the works left in an unfinished state, and, 
secondly, as means can be procured, to finish some entirely, and complete 
others, at least, to points where they may be rendered available or useful 
to the country." 

The legislature of 1839 authorized the issue of $1,500,000 of cer- 
tificates of indebtedness, in the form of state treasury notes, for the 
purpose of paying the claims of the contractors and other public cred- 
itors. The certificates circulated as currency for a time at their face 
value, but within two years they had depreciated from forty to fifty per 
cent. They were printed on yellow paper and became known as "yellow 
dog" money. In 1840 the legislature redeemed these certificates with 
an issue of engraved scrip in denominations of five and ten dollars. 
This scrip was made receivable for interest, and later for the principal, 
from the purchasers of the canal lands in payment of their indebtedness 
to the state. It wasi printed on white paper and soon received the name 
of "white dog" money, in comparison with the certificates of 1839. 

At the close of the year 1841 over $8,000,000 had been expended on 



the iiitfi'iial iinprovfUKMits autliori/etl liy tlic act ol' 1836. ami it was 
estimated that $20,000,000 more would he necessary to eouiplete the 
system aci-ordiiigr to the original plans. Public sentiment was adverse 
to any further i.ssue of state l)onds, or any increase in the slate debt, to 
carry on the woi'k and tlu' whole scheme collapsed. 

The Wabash & Erie canal was connnenced. however, before the pas- 
sage of the internal improvement law of 1836 and was built under a 
different act. When w(n'k was begun on the canal at l''iirt \Va\ne in 

Old Tow-Patu on the Wabash & Erie Canal 

1832, the progress was slow at, hut after three years it was 
announced and confidently expected that it would be opened for naviga- 
tion as far as Peru by July 4, 1837. Says the Peru Forester: "Before 
twelve o'clock of tliat da>-, the town was filled with people of the county, 
to witness the grand disjjlay on the occasion. Unfortunately the boats 
did not ari'ivc. The banks. Iieing pornns. a})sorbed the water much 
faster than was anticipated." 

Following this was the statement: "Since the above was written, 
we were informed that the packet boat Indiana, Captain Columbia, had 
arrived at the head of the lock, about one mile above town, and that it 


would be impossible for her to reacli the Itasin in conseciueiu-c of the 
canal not having been sufifieiently filled with watc-r to buoy h<'r up." 

No freight was carried by the Indiana on that initial trip. The 
passengers left the boat at the lock and reached Peru, some on foot and 
some in vehicles that went out to meet them. Accnrding to Graham, 
they were entertained at the National Hotel, located at the northwest 
corner of Canal and Miami streets, and then kept by John Cooper. 
Captain Columbia returned with tlie Indiana to Fort Wayne, but before 
leavino- the lock announced his determination to make another trip the 
following week. His promise was kept and the Indiana was the first 
canal boat to arrive at Peru. 

When the state .system of internal improvements collapsed in 1839, 
the Wabash & Ei'ie canal was partly completed and the finished portion 
was bringing in a revenue. This part of the work was therefore not 
abandoned, and, as part of the land.s granted by the government was 
still unsold, it was hoped that sufficient revenue could lie realized from 
the sale to complete the canal according to the original design. The act 
of 1836 contemplated 1.2811 miles of canal, railroad and public highway. 
Levering 's Hi.storic Indiana (page 224) says that in 1842. when only 
281 miles of this system had been completed, the state was in debt to 
the amount of !};207.894.613 and the authorities found it a difficult matter 
to pay even the interest upon this indebtedness. Transportation chan- 
nels were still needed by the people, but there were no funds available 
with which to build them. Tlie Wabash & Erie canal, with its lands and 
tolls, was taken in part payment of the claims of tlu' contractors and 
other creditors by certain bondholders, wlio promised to complete the 
canal. This they did in 1851. The total length of the canal, from 
Toledo, Ohio, to Evansville, Indiana, was 460 miles, of which 379 miles 
were, in the state of Indiana. 

Elbert J. Benton, in his history of this great waterway, says : 
"Before the opening of the canal, in 1844, the zone of the Maumee and 
upper Wabash valleys had sent towards Toledo only 5,622 bushels of 
corn. Five years later the exports from the same region, sent to that 
port, reached 2.755,149 bushels. For home consumption, the large 
number of laborers added to the population increased the demand for 
produce and much more money than ever before came into circulation. 

"When the canal was begun, the upper Wabash valley was a wilder- 
ness. There were only 12,000 scattered population in all that district, 
but people began to flock in by wagon-loads, so that the num])er had 
increased to 270,000 by 1840. In 1846, over thirty families every day 
settled in the state. Five new counties were organized in three years 
following the opening of the first section of the canal from Fort Wayne 


to Huntington. Tliiity jxm- cent of the emigrants entering the port of 
New York passed into the grouj) of states whei'e the Erie canal and its 
eonneetions were being constrneted. The boats that took grain np the 
eanal lirought hack emigrants and homesteaders from tile East. Thirty- 
eight counties iu Indiana and nine in southeastern Illinois were directly 
affected by the new waterway. Long wagon trains of produce wended 
their way to the towns on tlie sliores of the eanal. In the year 1844 four 
hundred wagons in a day were waiting to unload at points like Lafayette 
and Wabasli." 

Some of the towns that sprang np along the line of the eanal grew 
into cities of considerable size. Industry was stimulated by the pros- 
pects of having a reliable outlet to the markets. Saw mills, Hour mills, 
paper and oil mills were establislied in tiiese towns and every boat that 
went u|i the canal carried the products of these mills to the eastern 
states. Between the years 1840 and 1850 the increase in population in 
the counties ad.jacent to the canal was nearly 400 per cent, or more than 
twice the increase in other parts of the state. Such an influence did 
the canal wield in the develojjment of the country through which it 
passed that Jlr. Benton calls it the "Indiana Appian Way." 

Just before the canal land office was removed from Peru to Logans- 
port, a smooth swindle in connection with the lands was attempted and 
came very near being successful. A. W. .Morris and John Fitzgerald 
succeeded in securing the passage of a l)ill l>y the legislature of 1846-7, 
declaring forfeited all lands upon which any part of the principal or 
interest was due and unpaid. Immediately after the governor signed 
the bill, Morris and Fitzgerald secured a copy and started for Peru. 
Enlisting the cooperation of the clerk in the hind ofifiee, the door of that 
institution was kept clo.sed until the conspirators could enter all the 
choice farms in the eanal strip whose owners were delinquent. "While 
this was going on, John Shields, who had considerabl(> Inisiness with the 
land ofifiee, went fo the building, but was denied admission. Suspecting 
that something was wrong, he noised it about anil within a short time 
a large number of people were at the office, demaiuiing to know why 
they were denied admission. Morris and Fitzgerald left Peru as hastily 
as they had, come, not caring to face the indignant populace. The act 
was subse(|ucntly declared fi-anduleiit and at the next session was 

About the time the canal was completed the building of railroads 
engrossed the attention of the people of Ijidiana. As the railway lines 
came into operation the income of the eanal was visibly affected, and in 
a few years it ceased to be a paying institution. The legality of the 
i-omiiai'y was also called into (|uestion and tlic state was asked to pay 


one-half of the debt for which the canal had been taken, the creditors 
claiming that, by granting franchises to the railroad companies, the 
state had defrauded the canal companj' out of large sums that would 
otherwise have been received in tolls. As the railroads increased in 
number and mileage, the traffic on the canal correspondingly decreased 
until the company ended in a financial failure, but during its existence, 
perhaps no one agency was of such potent influence in developing the 
Wabash valley as the Wabash & Erie canal. 

In 1873 the constitutional amendment was adopted enjoining the 
state from ever* obligating itself for the payment of any portion of the 
canal bonds. As stated above, Inisiness declined and in 1876, upon fore- 
closure, the great waterway was sold to William Fleming, of Fort 
Wayne, by a United States marshal. In the summer of 1875 a freshet 
caused a washout of the canal at the eastern edge of the city of Peru, 
near the old dam. When the waters subsided the canal was practically 
dry and no longer fit for commercial purposes. With the gloomy out- 
look financially of the canal company there was no disposition to repair 
the damage done and boats were left stranded at infrequent intervals 
along its bed, where they gradually went into ruin and decay. 

E. H. Shirk and A. N. Dukes, of Peru, bought fi'om Mr. Fleming 
the old waterway from Lagro to Lafayette and the most of it has been 
disposed of piecemeal, either by purchase or condemnation proceedings, 
to electric railway lines and other interests. In the purchase of the 
property Shirk and Dukes had some associates, among whom were H. J. 
Shirk and several Logansport people, but their holdings were small and 
they were soon lost sight of as interested parties. 

Steambo.vt Navigation op the Wabash 

In the early part of this chapter mention is made of the first steam- 
boat that ascended the Wabash river to Lafayette, about 1823. While 
the country was yet undeveloped, and but sparsely settled, several 
attempts were made to send steamboats farther up that river. The fol- 
lowing account of the first steamboat that ever reached Logansport is 
taken from Saiiford C. Cox's "Recollections of the Early Settlement 
of the Wabash Valley : ' ' 

"During the June freshet of 1834, a little steamer called the Repub- 
lican advertised that she would leave the wharf at Lafayette for Logans- 
port on a certain day. A few of us concluded to take a pleasure trip 
on the Republican, and l)e on the pioneer steamboat that would land at 
Logansport, a thriving town situated at the confluence of the Wabash 
and Eel rivers, in the heart of a beautiful and fertile region of country. 
At the hour appointed the Republican left the landing at Lafayette, 


uiuKt a good head of steam, and 'wjilkcd the waters like a tliiiitr of life.' 
We soon passed Cedar I'.lurt's, Davis' Ferry, the mouths of Wild Cat 
and Tippeeanoe, and began to antieijiale a (|uiek and siieeessful trip. 
But soon after passing the Delphi laiidini;- the boat stuck fast ui)on a 
sandbar, which detained us for several hours. Another and another 
obstruction was met with every few miles, which we overcame with 
much difliculty. labor and delay. At each successive sandbar the most 
of the boat's crew and many of the passengers got out into the water 
and lifted the boat, or jiulled upon a large rope that was exteniled to the 
shore — an important au.xiliai'y to the steam power to ])ropel the vessel 
over these obstructions. Xight overtctok us stuck fast upon the bnttom 
of the river below Tijiton's port. 

"Several days and nights were spent in fruitless attempts to get 
over the I'apids. All haiuls, exceiit the women and a few others, were 
frequently in the water up to their chins, for hours together, endeavor- 
ing to lift tile boat off the bar. The water fell rapidly and prevented 
the boat fi'om either ascending farther up or returning down the river. 
While at this place we were visited by sevei-al ciimi)anies of well dressed, 
fine looking ^liami and Pottawatomie Indians, of all ages and sexes, 
who would sit for hours on the bank, ailmiring the boat, which they 
greatly desii'ed to see in motion, under a full head of steam. After four 
days and nights' inetfectual efforts to proceed, the boat was abandoned 
by all except the cai)tain and part of his crew. 

"Two or three weeks afterwards over a dozen yokes of largi^ oxen 
wei-e lirought down from Logansport, and the Republican was hauled 
over ripples and sandbars to Logansport, and the citizens of that place 
and the surrounding country had the luxury of a steamboat arrival on 
the Fourth of July, and Captain Towne had the (doubtful) honor of 
being the connnander of the first steamboat that visited Logansport; 
for it cost him his l)oat, which bilged soon after its arrival in port, and 
its hull, years afterward, might be seen lying sunk to the bottom of the 
Wabash near its confluence with the waters of Eel river." 

One would naturally suppose that the fate of the Republican would 
have had a teiulency to discourage others from making the attempt, 
l)ul not so. Alonu the Wabash was a large, fertile, undeveloped coun- 
try, and adventurous navigators were willing to take risks, hoping that 
congress cnuld be made to see that the Wabash could be I'eudered navi- 
gable and undertake thi' im|)rovement of the river. In 18;i5 the first 
steamboat ascended the river as far as Peru. The voyage of this vessel 
is thus described by Cox: 

"During the next sununer (18:55), there was anothei' June freshet 
in the Wal)ash, and the steamlioat Scieni'c was advertised for a trip to 



Logausport. Peru and Chirl' (lodl'i'Oy's village above the mouth of the 
ilississiiiewa. The umisually high stage of the river gave promise of 
a successful trip. At Delphi and other points along the river, consider- 
able accessions were made to our company. The boat reached Logaus- 
port without any difficulty. There was a large increase of passengei's 
from this point. The Tiptons. Laselles, Burets, Polks, Johnsons aud 
nianv others of the old settlers of the town turned out, many of them 


Ox THE Eel Kiver x\eak (Jhili 

with their entire families, for a steanil)oat excursion, to visit the neigh- 
boring town of Peru and their aboriginal neighbors and valuable cus- 
tomers at Godfroys village. 

"The boat left the wharf at Logansport under a full head of steam, 
which was considered necessary to carry her over the rapids a short 
distance above town. Our gallant boat failed to make the ripple, and 
after puffing and snorting for about two hours without gaining over 
forty feet, she dropped back to the foot of the rapids, where several 


hundred of the passengers went ashore to walk around llic rapids. Kosiii, 
tai- and siiles of l)acoii were freely east into the fire, to ercate more steam, 
and another longer and stronger effort was made to get over the rapids, 
but in vain. 

"After narrowly eseaping tlie destnietion of his boat, tiie captain 
deemed it prudent to drop down to Logansport again and lighten the 
boat. Over two huiidi-ed barrels of flour and salt were taken off the 
boat, which lay that night at the landinu- at Logansport and one hundred 
or more of the citizens of Ijafayette and Delphi shared the hospitality 
of their neighbors at Logansport. 

"After breakfast the next morning, the most of the passengers 
walked ai'ound the rapids, and the steamer passed over them the first 
effort. All joined in congratulations for the success of the morning, 
which was consiiin-ed a favorable omen for a successful and pleasant 
trip. We soon reached .Miainisburg and Peru, two little rival towns 
on the west bank of the Wabash." 

roncerning the ai'rival of the Science at Peru in 1835, Graham's 
"Histoiy of Miami County" says: "She came without notice, and left 
without ceremony. Tier movements -were governed by the maxim that 
'time and tide wait for no — steand)()at.' The water was falling and delay 
w"as dangerous. Lying to at the l)auk a moment, to allow those who de- 
sired a short ride to get aboard, she went up to Chief Godfroy's above 
the mouth of the Jlississinewa, stopped there a short time, returned, let 
off her excursionists, and then passed down the river out of sight and 
was gone." 

The steamer Tecumseh, Captain David Laugblin. came up the 
Wabash to Peru in the sjiring of ISiifi and iirought several consignments 
of goods to the local nirrrliaiits. This boat aftefwai'd had its name 
changed to the Logansport and made several ti-ips up the ri\er to that 
city. There is a stm-y to the effect that Chief Godfrey ottered HioOO to 
the owner or master of any steamboat that would ascend the Wabash 
as far as his village. I5oth the Science and the Tecumseh went there, 
but it is not known which of then, if either, icceived the promised reward. 
By 1837 indications pointed to an early completion of the Wabash & 
Erie canal and after that date effoi-t.s to bring steaml)oats up the river 
as far as Peru practically ceased. 

The Raii.koad Era 

The first railroad in the United States was a line about nine miles 
in length, running from the town of Maueh Chunk, Pennsylvania, to 
some coal mines. It was somewluit in the nature of an experiment, but 
it proved to be a success, and thoughtful men foresaw that this was the 



oomiiig' method of transportation. Wliilu tlie states were turning their 
attention to the building of canals as a means of developing their natural 
resources, a few miles more of railroad were built in the East, though 
many people wero skeptical as to the ultimate results and many others 
were strenuously opposed to the introduction of this method of traffic 
and transportation. About 1830 some young men of Lancaster, Ohio, 
asked the school board of that town to grant them the use of the school 
house for the purpose of discussing the railroad question. To this re(|uest 
the board made the follo'.ving reply: 

"You are welcome to the use of the school house to debate all proper 
questions in. but such things as railroads and telegraphs are impossi- 
bilities and rank infidelity. There is nothing in the Word of God about 
them. If God had designed that his intelligent creatures should travel 
at the frightful speed of fifteen miles an hour, by steam, He would clearly 
have foretold it through His holy prophets. It is a device of Satan to 
lead immortal souls down to hell." 

Notwithstanding such oliji-ctions. the railroad gradually found 
friends among the more progressive element of the population. In th 
light of modern progress, the arguments of the Lancaster school l)oard 
in 1830 seem extremely puerile, to say the least. And, although tlie holy 
prophets failed to foretell a "frightful speed of fifteen miles an hour," 
it is no uncommon occurrence for the fast passenger trains of the pres- 
ent day to travel at a rate four times that great. In fact, a railroad 
whose trains did not make greater speed than fifteen miles an hour 
would hardly be considered as deserving of patronage. 

Lake Erie & Western 

This was the first railroad in ^liami county. It was projected by W. 
J. Holman, a citizen of the county, as a connecting line between Indian- 
apolis and Peru. Mr. Holman made tlie 'preliminary sm-vey and esti- 
mates of cost, in which he undertook to show that the road could be 
built by the people living along the line. Through the efforts of Mr. 
Holman, the Peru & Indianapolis Railroad Company was incorporated 
on Jaiuiary 19. 1846. Among the members of the first board of directors 
were W. J. Holman, J. T. Miller, N. 0. Ross, G. S. Fenimore, Wil- 
liam Kessler and R. L. Britton. of Miami county. The first funds sub- 
scribed, amounting to about .^soOO, were paid to General T. A. Morris, 
of Indianapolis, to make an estimate of the cost of construction. In 
June, 1849, the directors asked the people of Miami county to support 
a proposition authorizing the county to subscribe .1*20,000 for the comple- 
tion of the road. A large majority of the taxpayers voted for the sub- 
scription, and upon the strength of this subsidy a loan of .$10,000 was 


iicgotiati'il, wliicli sum \v;is pliiccii in the hands of Ihe directors. Work 
was coininem-fd on the road at Indianapolis and in time was eonipleted 
as I'ar as Noblesviile, where the money ran out and further construction 
was suspended until additional aid could be secured from the counties 
along the line. Blost of the counties responded with help, but in the 
meantime the mortgagees, who had loaned the company the $10,000 in 
1849, became somewhat anxious and the company got into the courts, 
which caused aiiother delay. 

After many trials and tribulations, the road was completed to Peru 
in the spring of 1854. Shops and a round-house were built at Peru 
in the fall of 1853. In 186!) connection was made with ^licliigan City, 
by means of a road called the Chicago, Cincinnati & Louisville, which 
ran from Peru to Laporte, and the completed line then took the name 
of the Indianapolis, Peru & Chicago Railroad. Four years later the old 
shops, in the southwest pait of Peru, were abandoned and new ones 
were erected in the northwestern part of the city. When, Ijcfore the 
removal, arrangements for a change of shop location and right of way 
through the city of Peru were begun, the citizens of the municipality 
became interested and the right of way, as it is today, was donated, 
James IM. Brown, A. N. Dukes, A. C. Brownell, William Rassner and 
others being conspicuously active for the city's welfare. A contract 
was entered into between the common council and the railroad company 
providing for a reversion of title both of the right of way and shop 
site in the event that the shops should ever be removed from the city. 
On one or two occasions this contract has stood the city in good stead 
when under !iew management or new ownership the company has mani- 
fested a disposition to abandon them. In 1881 the road was leased 
by what is now the Wabash Railroad Company, by which it was oper- 
ated until 1887. when the lease was surrendered and the road passed 
into new hands, becoming a part of the Lake Erie & Western System, 
the main line of which runs from Sandusky, Ohio, to Peoria, Illinois. 
It is still known as the Lake Erie & Western, though it is now under 
the control of the New York Central System. 

Another change in the right of way was effected in 18!)5 through 
the efforts of C. IT. Brownell, who succeeded in having a removal of 
the long switch which then ran east on Main street to Forest and then 
diagonally across many lots, now regularly platted and adorned with 
comfortable homes, to the old woolen mills. The switch was changed 
to leave the main line near the bridge, then nan east along the canal to 
a point east of Forest street, where it angles slightly toward the north 
and on to its original drstination. 


The Wabash 

Soon after work eomiiu-nei'd on .the Peru & Indianapoli.s Rail- 
road the preliminary steps were taken to build a railroad from Toledo, 
Ohio, to St. Louis. Missouri, down the Wabash valley. The first active 
work dolie on this project was in a meeting' at Logansport on June 23, 
1852. At that meeting were a number of eastern capitalists, as well as 
the leadintr business men of the Wabash valley. James B. Fulwiler and 
L. D. Adkinson. of Peru, being among the number. It is said that when 
Daniel D. Pratt was called on for some expression as to the advisability 
of building the road, he w.ilked over to the secretary's table and signed 
his name for a handsome sum of money, remarking at the time; "There 
is my speech." His example was quickly followed and before the meet- 
ing adjourned a large part of the money necessary for the construction 
of the road had been subscribed. 

A company was then incorporated under the name of the Wabash. 
St. Louis & Pacific Railroad Company and such encouragement was 
given to the undertaking by the people living along the route that the 
road was completed in 1856. When this company leased the Lake Erie 
& Western the head<|uarters of the western division were removed from 
Fort Wayne to Peru and the office of the chief train despatcher was 
also located there. This action on the part of the Wabash added to the 
importance of Pern as a railroad center. 

The Pan Handle 

This road, which belongs to the system known as the Pennsylvania 
Lines west of Pittsbui'gh. has been an important factiir in the develop- 
ment of the southern part of ^liami county. It enters the county near 
the southeast corner and follows a northwesterly course, through the 
towns of Converse, Amboy, North Grove, Loree and Bunker Hill, and 
crosses the western boundary about two miles north of the southwest 
corner of Pipe Creek townsliip. It was built through the county imme- 
diately after the close of the Civil war, having been completed about 
1867. It gives the southern part of the county a direct line to Chicago 
and all the great eastern commercial centers. 

When this road was securing and surveying its right of way through 
Miami county it proposed to come to Peru and make this its shop head- 
quarters. AU the company asked of the Peru people was a bridge to 
span the Wabash river. In this day of subsidies and bonuses it is 
scarcely conceivable that so liberal a proposition should meet with oppo- 
sition, but a sufficient number of influential people arrayed themselves 


a.irainst the proposal to defeat it. Tlie road then went to Logansport 
and ]M-aetically made that citj-. The people of Peru have never ceased 
to regret, even to this day, their short-siglitedness. Many who actively 
opposed the proi)osition lived to regret their action. 

The Eel River Ro.\d 

What is known as tlic Eel River Railroad was consti'ucted through 
.Miami cdunty in 1871 and 1S72. It runs from Logansport to Butler, 
Indiana, and from tlie latter point its trains run to Detroit over the 
tracks of another company. The ;\Iiami county stations on this line 
are Mexico, Denver, Chili and Pettysville. Some years ago the line was 
leased by the "Wabash for a period of ninety-nine years a* an annual 
rental of if;90,00(). This lease was made the subject of litigation and was 
finally set aside by the court, on the gi'ounds that the Wabash could 
not lease or otherwise control a parallel or competing line. On June 
10, 11)01. the road was sold b3' the receiver to Elijah Smith, who rep- 
resented the oi'iginal .stockholders, for $1,000,000. Not long after that 
it was leased by the Vandalia Railroad Company, which still operates 
it. Under the present numagement the character of the service has 
been iiuiinived and tliH volume of business has been increased. 

The Peru & Detroit 

In 1889 some of the capitalists and manufactures of Peru, desiring 
some other outlet to the north other than that afforded by the Lake 
Erie & Western, organized a company to build a line from Peru to 
Chili, where it would connect with the Eel River road. On Maj' 28, 
1889. the people of Peru townshi]) voted an appropriation of $40,000 
and the county commissioners ordered a ta.x levy of one dollar on each 
$;100 worth of property m the township for the years 1889 and 1890 for 
the construction of flu- road. This tax yielded a fund of nearly $44,000 
and after paying the subsidy of $40,000 the balance was turned into 
the county treasury. The road was completed the same j'ear (1889) 
and was leased to the Wabash for ninety-nine years. 

When the organization was perfected C. H. Brownell was chosen 
president of the company. Mr. Brownell had long i)een identified with 
railroad interests as director and otherwise and he was regarded as the 
logical Peruvian to occupy that position with the new enterprise, which 
was regarded locally as a remarkable achievement and a harbinger of 
city expansion and prosperity. It was proposed on the jiart of the 
Wabash Railroad Comjiany to build extensive slio])s at I'itu and it l)egan 
to fulfill its part of the contract, building a round-house and shops 

Vol. 1—17 


which are still in use north of the railroad and west of Miami street, 
but they never grew to the proportions contemplated owing to subse- 
quent litigation and the enforced abandonment l)y the "Wabash of the 
Peru & Detroit and Eel river lines. Citizens of Logansport, which city 
had been deprived of the terminal benefits which now naturally accrued 
to Peru, began a suit to set aside the lease on the ground that the law 
did not countenance a lease to a competing line. After long litigation 
this view was upheld by the courts and the well laid plans of the Peru 
citizens came to naught. For years right of way and tracks of the Peru 
& Detroit lay idle and went into a state of decay. Finally the road was 
purchased and rehabilitated by the "Winona Traction Company. 

The other local men associated officially with ilr. Brownell on the 
Peru & Detroit board were Louis B. Fulwiler, secretary and director, 
and R. A. Edwards, treasurer. The other directors were St. Louis men 
affiliated with the "Wabash system. 

Besides the subsidy voted for the Peru & Detroit a considerable sub- 
scription, possibly $25,000, was raised among the citizens. 

Chic.\go, Indiana & Eastern 

A company was incorporated under this name in the spring of 1893 
and came forward with a proposition to build a road through ]\Iiami 
county, provided encouragement was offered in the way of liberal 
appropriations. On June 2, 1893, an election w-as held in the townships 
of Jackson and Peru, at which the people of Jackson voted a subsidy 
of $15,000 and the people of Peru township, $50,000. To raise the 
money the commissioners ordered a levy of seventy-five cents on each 
$100 worth of taxable property in the two townships for the year 1893. 
Nothing was done by the company that year toward the construction 
of the road and the commissioners rescinded the order levying the tax. 
After building about ten miles of road — from Fairmount to jMatthews, 
in Grant county — the company became involved in law suits with regard 
to the right of way, and in November, 1895, was placed in the hands 
of receiver by the Grant county circuit court. It was finally enabled 
to complete the road from Muncie to Converse. 

Chesapeake & Ohio 

"When this road was projected in the year 1900 it was known as the 
Cincinnati, Richmond & Muncie. From Cincinnati to the suburb of 
Cottage Grove its trains were to run over the tracks of the Cincinnati, 
Hamilton & Dayton Railway, and the intention was to extend the line 
to North Judson, Indiana, whence trains would use the tracks of the 


Erie railroad iuto Chicago. On ;\Iarcli 1, 1901, an election was held 
in the city of Marion on the question of granting fuiaucial aid to the 
company and the proposition was defeated. Immediately after this 
the citizens of Peru started a movement to bring the road to that city. 
On Wednesday evening, March 13, 1901, a meeting was held at the 
circuit court room to ascertain the sentiment of the people on the sub- 
ject. Some of those present had been to Richmond to investigate the 
matter and they reported that the road was being constructed in a sub- 
stantial manner. A petition that had been prepared, asking the county 
commissioners to call a special election to vote on the question of grant- 
ing aid to the road, was read by H. P. Loveland, and speeches were 
made by N. N. Antrim, E. T. Reasoner, J. O. Cole, F. M. Stutesman, W. 
C. Bailey, C. A. Cole and a number of others, all of whom expressed 
themselves in favor of rendering assistance to the company. 

The petition recjuested an election, at which the people could vote 
on the proposition for Peru township to appropriate $60,000 and Jack- 
son township $15,000. the money not to be paid until the road was 
completed to Peru and trains running between that city and the south- 
em terminus, and it was further stipulated that the road was to be 
completed to Peru by January 1, 1902. In response to this petition 
the commissioners ordered an election in the two townships for April 
23, 1901. When the* subsidy for the C. R. & M. was about to be voted 
upon the advocates of the enterprise found that they had opposition, 
supposedly from the Pennsylvania Railroad, which would meet compe- 
tition from the new line. An exceedingly active and even bitter cam- 
paign followed, with a result probably of a larger majority for. the 
measure than would otherwise have been accorded. The proposition 
was carried by handsome majorities in both townships, the terms were 
accepted by the company and work on the road was prosecuted with 
such vigor that the first passenger train arrived at Peru at 3 :07 P. M., 
December 29. 1901. The next day the first passenger train left Peru 
for Cincinnati. 

The first train to arrive at Peru on December 29th was greeted by a 
large concourse of people, with a brassj band, etc., to celebrate in a fit- 
ting manner the completion of the road to that city. A number of Peru 
people went out and met the train, to have it said that they were 
among the passengei-s on the firet train that came in over the C. R. & 
M. Railway. 

On August 5, 1902, a petition was presented to the county commis- 
sioners asking for an additional appropriation of $24,450 to aid the 
road in estiiblishing its round-house and machine shops at Peru, the 
money not to be paid until the company acquired at least thirty acres 


of ground and permanently located the said round-house and shoi>s. 
The petition was signed by sixty-one taxpayei's and in response to this 
popular request the commissioners ordered an election for September 
9, 1902. when the proposition was carried by a substantial majority of 
the voters of Peru township. 

Owing to the fact that the municipal indebtedness of the city of 
Peru was almost up to the constitutional limit, the matter of raising 
the money to secure the railroad shops was taken up by the Peru 
Improvement and Park Association, which was incorporated for that 
purpose. This association acquired a tract of land "north of and along 
the Wabash river and south of the Wabash & Erie canal, ea.stwar(l 
from tlie wagon bridge near the west line of Richardville Reserve No. 
5, on what is known as the Reyburu farm, the same to comprise and 
include the entire grove on said farm." By a special ordinance of the 
Peru city council, a contract was entered into between the city and the 
Improvement and Park Association, by which the city was to occupy 
a certain portion of this land as a public park for a period of ten years, 
upon payment of an annual rental of $3,200, and was given the option 
of purchase of said land "at any time within six months after the first 
day of January, 1913." The association then made preparations for 
borrowing the necessary amount of money to secure the shops. In a 
circular issued at the time it is stated: 

••Th^ method of borrowing this money is as follows: The Peru 
Improvement and Park Association will issue $50,000 of bonds in 
denominations $100 to $1,000 with interest at 5 per cent payable semi- 
annually on January 1st and July 1st, and with the right to pay on those 
dates on the principal of each bond whatever amount the company is 
able to pay in addition to the interest due; payments to be made in 
proportion on all bonds, and no bond whatever to receive any pay- 
ment unless all other bonds have the same per cent paid. . . . These 
bonds will be secured by a mortgage duly and legally executed by the 
•company and covering all the assets of the company enumerated above, 
excepting the cash subscription, which it is necessary to use to pay the 
current expenses, and the excess of land and donation over $50,000." 

The assets referred to in the preceding paragraph, as set forth in the 
circular, were: 1. The park contract with the city of Peru; 2. The 
donation voted by Peru towniship on September 9. 1902; 3. Certain 
real estate over and above that set apart for park purposes, which could 
1)0 platted into lots and sold. The trustees named in the mortgage were 
James 0. Cole, Frank W. Bearss and Benjamin E. Wallace. The bonds 
were liberally subscribed for by the people of Peru and in this way 
was raised the money to secure the permanent location of the roiuid- 
house and shops, making Peru a division point on the railroad. 


The park sclu'iiu- worked out admirably and in Deeeiiiber, l!)l:i, llie 
city having paiil the tenth annual rental, exercised its option and, upon 
payment of the agreed sum of one doUar, i-ec-eived a deed to the park 
grounds. In the meantime the pai-k assoeiation had paid off its bonds 
and the whole plan, wiiieh was originally devised to enable the munici- 
pality to obligate itself for a large sum without hindranee by the two 
per cent debt limit, was carried successfully through. Thus the citi- 
zens raised a bonus for the city, which, together with that voted at the 
same time by the township, made an amount sufficient to secure the 
shops and a binding contract was entered into pledging the shops to 
be continued here throufjli all subsequent ownerships. Thus, too. the 
city came into possession of a park without pr-iinarily designing that 
acquirement. Henry Meinhardt was secretary and- treasurer and Louis 
B. Fulwiler was president of the Improvement and Park Association 
and the former did most of the detail work thi-ouglinut all the nego- 
tiations. For a short time, however, J. G. Brcckenridge was secretary 
and Sig. Frank, treasurer. 

In 1905, soon after the road was finished to North Judson. it became 
known as the Chicago, Cincinnati & Louisville and was operated in con- 
nection with the Cincinnati, Hamilton & Dayton System. Thus will 
be noticed the coincidence of two roads called the Chicago, Cincin- 
nati & Louisville running through Miami county, though they had 
no connection with each other whatever. Subsequently it was acquired 
by the Chesapeake & Ohio, thus giving Peru direct connection with 
Cincinnati. Washington, and all the principal cities of the East. 

Electric Lines 

At the ]\Iay term of the county commissioners' court in 1900 a peti- 
tion of the Wabash Rivci' Ti-action Company, asking for a right of way 
over certain highways, canu' up for consideration and was continued 
until the next term. On .June 5, 1900, a i)etitibn of the citizens of Peru 
township asked the commissionei-s to order an election in said town- 
ship, "to vote on the question of appropriating $20,000 for the construc- 
tion of an electric railway through the township by the Wabash River 
Traction Company. "" At the same time a remonstrance was filed, but 
the board granted tlie petitioners the privilege of amending their peti- 
tion. When the amended jietition came before the board on the 8th, 
arguments for and against it were heai-d, after which the commission- 
ers refused to order the election. Thus ended the first effort to secure 
ill! electric line to Peru. 

On August S, 1900, the Wabash River Traction Company petitioned 
for a right of way over certain highways in Miami county, "Beginning 


in the Peru and Paw Paw gravel road at a point where the said road 
is intersected by the east line of the corporate limits of the City of Peru ; 
thence along the said Peru and Paw Paw gravel road in an eastwardly 
direction to a point where the same is intersected by the public high- 
way running in an eastwardly direction along the south side of the 
Wabash & Erie Canal ; thence along the said highway on the south side 
of the Wabash & Erie Canal in an eastwardly direction to the county 
line between Miami county and Wabash county." 

This petition was supplemented by one from some of the property 
holders along the proposed route, asking that the right of way be 
granted. Accordingly, the commissioners granted the company a 
franchise for fifty years, with the privilege of using the desired route, 
under certain conditions. About the same time the city authorities of 
Peru gave the company the privilege of laying its tracks and running 
cars upon certain streets in that city. The first car on this line came 
into Peru on July 1, 1901, drawn by three horses, laying out the cable 
for the trolley line. Six cars an-ived on July 4, 1901, and four more 
came in on the 9th. These were taken to the power house and made 
ready for service and on the 27th regular ear service was inaugurated. 

On September 3, 1901, Fred C. Boyd, who had been interested in the 
Wabash River Traction Compau.y from the beginning, as trustee, peti- 
tioned for a right of way and franchise over certain roads from the 
western limits of the city of Peru to the county line. His petition was 
granted the same day, but with the understanding that no special elec- 
tions should be asked for to vote aid in building the road, and that the 
company should keep in repair all ditches and bridges, building new 
bridges where the old ones were not sufficiently strong to support the 
weight of the cars. It was further stipulated that the franchise, with 
the conditions imposed, should be accepted by June 1, 1902, or the 
franchise would be forfeited. On May 7, 1902. Boyd accepted the terms 
of the franchise and on the same day transferred it to the Wabash 
River Traction Company. In due time the line was completed to Fort 
Wayne on the east and to Lafayette on the west, and is now known as 
the Fort Wayne & Northern Indiana Traction Company. 

Early in the year 1902 the Indianapolis Northern Traction Com- 
pany was given a right of way through the southern part of the county. 
On Jlarch 25, 1902, George F. McCullough, Horace C. Stilwell, H. A. 
Richardson and other representatives of the Indiana Union Traction 
Company visited Peru looking for a franchise and terminal for an elec- 
tric line from Kokomo. Satisfactory arrangements were made and 
this company acquired the franchise of the Indianapolis Northern. On 
October 6, 1903, permission was asked by the company to build an abut- 


lucnt oil the north bank nf tlic Wabash river I'or a bridge, at tlie foot 
of Broadway. The request was panted, the bridge was finished and 
early in 1904 Pern was eonneeted with Tiidianapolis liy an electric rail- 

Late ill the year 1904 a petition wa.s presented to tlie board of county 
coniiiiissioners re(Hi('Stiiii;' a special election in Pern township for the 
purpose of voting on the (piestion of an appropriation to the Winona 
Interiirbaii Railway, 'i'he trustees of the Winona Assembly, who were 
among the jirojeetors of the road, agreed to pay the expenses of holding 
the election and the board ordered that an election lie held on Tues- 
day, February 14, 1905. On Friday evening before the election a meet- 
ing was held at the eonrt-house in Peru, at which S. C. Dickey, one of 
the principal pi-omoters of tiie road, was one of the speakers. He 
explained the aims and advantages of the road and though the 14th was 
a very cold day a fair vote was polled. The proposition was carried 
— 1,288 to 776 — and the subsidy of $25,000 was thus granted to aid 
in the construction of the line. 

On ]\lareh 20. 1905, ^Ir. Dickey met with a number of citizens of 
Perry township and urged them to petition the commissioners for au 
election, by which the people of that township might voice their senti- 
ments with reg;ird to an appropiation of .$15,000. In, 1901, the 
voters of Perry had expressed themselves in favor of a subsidy of $10,000 
for an electric line to run from Wabash to Rochester. That road was 
never built, but the order for the appropriation had not been rescinded 
and the people did not care to burden themselves with an additional 
subsidy. To obviate this difficulty, Mr. Dickey agreed that, if the 
electors of the township should vote $15,000 to his road, and the road 
from Wabash to Rochester should be built, he would accept $5,000 and 
allow the old subsidy of 1901 to stand in favor of the other company. 
With this niidi'i'standing the board of commissioners ordered an elec- 
tion for i\la.y IG, 1905, when the proposition to give $15,000 to aid in 
the construction of the Winona line was carried by a majority of forty- 
nine votes in the township. 

With the $40,000 voted by Peru and I'crry townships, and the 
money derived from other sources, the road was completed about the 
close of the year 1905. This road uses the old tracks of the Peru & 
Detroit Railroad from Peru to Chili, that road having been abandoned 
when the Eel River Railroad was acquired by the Vandalia. The Winona 
Interurban cars run to Goshen, the county seat of Elkhart county, 
where they connect with the (Chicago, South Bend & Northern Indiana 
Electric Railway. 



It is certainly appropriate that the subject of drainage should come 
in this chapter on Internal Improvements, although the ditches for 
reclaiming swamp lands and improving the farms of the county have 
been constructed in a manner entirely different from that used in the 
building of railroads or the construction of public highways. Railroads 
are usually built by corporations with funds derived from the sale of 
stock or voted as subsidies by the people of the townships through which 
the line passes; public highways are constructed and kept in repair by 
a general tax levy, but the cost of public ditches is assessed against 
the lands drained by them in proportion to the benefits received. 

Old settlers can remember when practically the entire southern part 
of Miami county and some sections of the northern part were too wet 
for farming purposes, especially in the early spring, when the snow 
melted, to which were frequently added heavy spring rains. These low. 
wet lands were the last to be settled and in their natural state they 
were the source of much of the fever and ague with which the early 
settlers had to contend. Drainage has not only improved the land for 
agricultural, but it has also improved the health of the county's 

Several years before any pulilic drainage law was pa,ssed by the 
Indiana legislature, some of the Miami county farmers undertook the 
work of improving their farms by the introduction of tile drains. The 
first tile was used in the county in 1869. In 1875 the legislature passed 
a ditch law. The first ditch constructed in Miami county is wliat is 
known as the Mud Creek Ditch, in Allen and Union townships. It was 
petitioned for in 1878 and was completed in the fall of 1879. In 1881 
the act of 1875 and all supplementary acts were repealed by •'An Act 
to enable the owners of lands to drain and reclaim them, when the .same 
can not be done without affecting the lands of others, prescriliing the 
powers and duties of county commissioners and other officers in the 
premises, and to provide for the repair and enlargement of such drains, 
and repealing certain acts therein specified, and declaring an emerg- 
ency. ' ' 

Under the provisions of this law one or more land owners could pe- 
tition the board of county commissioners for a ditch, setting forth its 
general description, and they were required to furnish bond that they 
would pay the of the proceedings, in case the ditch was not estab- 
lished. If the three disinterested persons, appointed by the commis- 
sioners as viewers, reported favorable, and no remonstrance was offered, 
the board ordered the construction of the ditch. It was not long until 


tlu' l;iw \\:is fmiiiil to lie so iiitfiratc and tlic work of scciiriiiu tlic 
eonstiMictinii of a liiti-li uikIit its i)i-ovi.sioiis was haiiipiTL'd liy so much 
''red tape."' that in ISSl it was siiperscdi'd hy what is ]<nown ,-is thr 
Cirf'uit Court ditdi law. 

This hnv c-rcatcd the olficc of drainapfc conuaissioner, the incuml)ent 
of whic'li was to he a])i>oiiiti'd liy the eounty coniniissiont'rs. William 
Zeliriiig was the first drainage coinmissioiier of lliami county. The 
entire proceedings under this act ai-e in the circuit court. A petition 
is presented to the judge, who appoints a conunis.sioner to' act with the 
drainage connnissioner and the county surveyoi' in viewing the pro- 
posed ditch. If they i-eport in favor of its construction it is so ordered 
by the coui-t. 

On .March 4, 189.'i, what is known as the Drainage District law went 
into effect. Under its ])rovisions a drain niaj- be constructed and kept 
in repair by nnitnal agreement of the owners of the lands affected. All 
ditches therefore come under three genei-al heads, viz. : Connnissioner 
ditch, Circuit Court ditch, or Drainage District ditch. The Connnis- 
sioner and Circuit Coui-t ditches are kept in repair liy the township 

The following table shows, in i-ound figures, the approximate num- 
bei- of miles of ])ublic ditch in each township of the county, with the 
cost of construction : 

Township Miles Cost 

Allen 28 $30,000 

Butler 4 1,500 

Clay 25 18,000 

Deer Creek 22 20,000 

Erie 3 1.600 

Harrison 14 11,00(1 

Jackson 20 15,000 

Jefferson 3 1,800 

Peri-y 40 33,000 

Peru ." 7 20,000 

Pipe ( 'ivek 9 7,500 

Richland 5 2,000 

Union 21 16,000 

Washington 3 2,000 

Total 204 $179,400 

These figures include only the main ditches and the original cost of 
eonstruft ion. Tm many instances hi'anciics have been opened sin<'e the 


main ditch was constructed and large sums have been assessed against 
the lands for widening, deepening and otherwise improving some of the 
ditches after they were built and found insufficient. The public ditches 
afford an outlet for the numerous tile drains that farmers have put in 
at their own expense. Peter Kelly, while serving as drainage commis- 
sioner some years ago. estimated that the cost of these private tile drains 
would average close to ten dollars per acre, or more than $2,000,000 for 
the entire county. In some instances the cost of private drains upon a 
farm has run as high as $30 an acre, and in a few instances it has 
reached $50. 

But even at that figure the money spent in tile drains has been a good 
investment for the farmer. It is related of an old German farmer in the 
southern part of Washington to^^^lship. some forty years ago, that after 
successive crop failures on account of the low lands upon his farm, 
announced his intention of mortgaging the place to buy tile. His wife, 
with visions of deeper debt and an old age in the poor house, tried to dis- 
suade him from his purpose. He finally succeeded in overcoming her 
objections, the mortgage was executed, the tile purchased and judiciously 
distrilnited over the farm, and the next season he had good crops, while 
his neighbors were "drowned out." Three years was sufficient to lift 
the mortgage, his debts were all paid and he was on the high road to pros- 
perity. His example was followed by his neighbors with the result that 
what was once a breeding place for malaria and mosquitoes is now one of 
the most fertile sections of the countv. 


Public Finances — Bonded Debt of the County — Banks — Trust 
Companies — Agriculture — Statistics Relating to Crops and Live 
Stock — ]\Ianufacturing — CnARACTER op the First Factories — 
Peru as a Manufacturing Center — Natural Gas Era — Its Influ- 
ence on Industry — Oakdale — Report of Bureau op Inspection — 
The Oil Field — Outside Industries — Factories in Other Towns. 

The people of ]\Iiami county are to be congratulated upon the fact 
that the public revenues have always been managed in such a manner 
that at no time has the indebtedness been burdensome to the taxpayers. 
Bonds have been issued from time to time for specific purposes, but 
with each issue provisions were made for the redemption of the bonds 
as they fell due. At the close of the year 1913 the bonded debt of the 
•county was $667,852, which was distributed as follows : 

Gravel road lionds .$457,852 

Courthouse bonds 168,000 

Concrete bridge bonds 4,000 

Broadway bridge bonds 38.000 

Total $667,852 

The gravel road bonds are pi'oportioned among the several townships 
of the county, according to the amount of imjjroved highway in each, 
and might be considered a township ol)ligation rather than a county 
debt, though the bonds are issued by the board of county commissioners 
upon jiftition of the taxpayers for the construction of a gi'avel road. 
The original issue of the coTU-thouse bonds was $280,000, but after 
bids were received it was found that the amount was more tlian neces- 
sary and a few of the t)onds wei'e canceled. For the construction of 
the concrete bridge bonds to the amount of $20,000 were issued, only 
$4,000 of wliich remained unpaid at the close of the year 1913. The 
issue of bonds for the construction of the bridge across the Wabash 




river at the foot of Broadway, in the city of Peru, was made necessary 
by the great flood of March. 1913. which carried the old bridge away. 
According to the tax duplicate foi- the year 1913. the assessed value 
of the taxable property of the county was nearly $17,500,000. hence the 
bonded indelitedness is less than four per cent of the property value. 

Although the figures in the principal item — the gravel road bonds — 
may seem large, when the reader stops to reflect that ^liami county 
has many miles of improved roads, and that the mileage is l)eing con- 
stantly increased, it will be seen that every dollar of these bonds repre- 
sents a permanent investment, the profits of which can hardl\- be 

CoNCKKTE Bkhkik ()\er Wakash River, Pert 

estimated. So, too, the county has something to show for the bonds 
issued in the other cases. Miami county has one of the best appointed 
courthouses in the state, the cost of whicii was not excessive when com- 
pared with public buildings of like character elsewhere: the concrete 
bridge over the Waliash river is one of the largest of its kind in the 
country and so well built that it withstood the pressure of the great 
flood of March, 1913, that carried other bridges away as if they were 
built of cork; and the Broadway bridge, when completed, will .soon 
pay for itself in the advantages afforded to the farmers south of the 
Wabash and the business interests of the city of Peru. 

Banking Instititions 

The oldest banking house in Miami county is the First National 
Bank of Peru. It was organized in April, 1864, under the act of 


congress, approv<'(i l^'chriiaiy 2."), 1S().'}, iuitiioiizing the establishment 
of national banks. K. II. Shirk, who started tlie institution as a private 
bank, was the prinei])al promoter and the first president alter the organ- 
ization as a national I)ank. The first board of direetors was composed 
of I'^ IT. Sliii-k. Roliirt .MiJlei', .Taiue.s Ilolienshade. Jaeob Ki-eutzer, 
George L. Dai'l. W. \V. Constant and Alirahaiu Leedy. Mai-k Ilaynes 
was the first cashici- and .M. S. Robinson the seeond. Tlic liank opened 
for business in a small frame building at No. 6 Soilth Broadway, but 
in a short time was removed to a new building on the eorner lot at 
the northwest eorner of Main and liroadway. In 1889 a new building 
was ereeted upon this same lot, l)ut on tlie corner, by the bank, where 
it now has a permanent location. The original capital stock of $75,000 
has been increased to $100,000 and the surplus amounts to about as 
much more. At tlic close of the year 191li the deposits were about 
$1,500,000. In l'Jl;i the interior of the bank was completely remodeled 
and an armor plate safety vault installed. This is one of the three armor 
plate safet.y deposits in the state of Indiana, the other tw'o being located 
in the city of Indianapolis. The officers of the bank at the begin- 
ning of the year 1914 were : R. A. Edwards, president ; J. O. Cole 
and G. R. Chamberlain, vice-])residents ; M. A. Edwards, cashier; 
Lloyd V. Smith, assistant cashier. 

Jn February, 1867, the firm of Bonds, Iloagland & Comiiany opened 
a pi'ivate bank at No. 6 South Broadway. It continued as a private 
bank until in July, ISTl, when it was reorganized as the Citizens' 
National Bank of Peru, with I). C. Darrow as president and M. S. 
Rol)inson as cashier. The first board of directors consisted of the 
president, cashier, A. C. Brownell, C. D. Bond, N. 0. Ross, William 
Smith anil K. K. Donaldson. President Darrow resigned in July, 
1883, when Chark's II. P.rownell was elected to the office, which he 
still holds. Not long after this change in the executive head of the 
bank till- board of directors authorized the purchase of the prop- 
erty at No. 16 North Broadway, opjjosite the courthouse, where a 
building has been erected and occupied by the bank since September, 
1886. The capital stock of the Citizens' National is $100,000, the 
surplus .$25,000 and the deposits over $400,000. At the close of the 
year 19i;i the officers were: C. II. Brownell, president; Charles R. 
Hughes, vice-president; C. :\I. Charters, cashier; G. E. Potter, assist- 
ant cashier. 

The Peru Trust Company is the outgrowth of the Miami County 
Loan and Savings Association, which was incorporated on .lanuary 
13, 1891, with a capital stock of .$500,000. It began business on 
February 2, 1891, in a room over Hale's store and during the first 


five years of its career accumulated over $175,000 iu assets and paid 
out over $26,000 iu dividends to its depositors. In 1897 the asso- 
ciation leased the buikling on North Broadway, where its successor — 
the Peru Trust Company — is now located. On Saturday, July 13, 
1901, some of the depositors became uneasy and started a run upon 
the association. Over $40,000 passed over the counter that day 
in balancing accounts. Before the doors were opened the following 
Monday morning there was a large crowd in front of the building 
and it looked as though the run w^as to be continued. In the mean- 
time the association had called in its reserves from Chicago and 
when the doors were opened there was a literal "barrel of money" 
iu the window, in plain view of those on the street. This had a 
salutary etfect and the knowledge that the association had among 
its assets about $400,000 of mortgage securities checked the run and 
restored confidence. On the evening of January 14. 1904, the iliami 
Couuty Loan and Savings Association closed its doors and the next 
morning the Peru Trust Company began business in the same room 
with the same officers, the change having been made without friction 
or inconvenience. At the close of the year 1913 the capital stock of 
the company was $100,000, the surphis $25,000, and the deposits over 
$1,000,000. The officers at that time were as follows: Joseph H. 
Shirk, president; Elbert AV. Shirk, vice-president; E. L. Miller, sec- 
retary; C. W. Beecher assistant secretary. Mr. Alillcr has been sec- 
retary of the institution ever .since it started as the Miami County 
Loan and Savings Association in February, 1891. 

The Wabash Valley Tnist Company received a charter early in 
the year 1904 and opened its doors for business on the 21st of March, 
with the following officers: B. E. Wallace, president; F. R. Fow- 
ler and C. H. Brownell, vice-presidents; W. W. Sullivan, secretary; 
Charles R. Hughes, treasurer. The death of Mr. Fowler left a va- 
cancy that has not been filled and the offices of secretary and treas- 
urer have been consolidated, the position being filled by Mr. Sulli- 
van, with A. E. Cathcart as assistant secretary and treasurer. The 
company owns the building at the southwest corner of Alain and 
Broadway, the main floor of which is used for the general banking 
and trust company business, and the basement for the abstract, real 
estate and insurance departments. At the beginning the capital stock 
was $100,000, which was increased to $150,000 — all paid up— on Jan- 
uary 1, 1914. Its deposits at that time were over $700,000. 

About the beginning of the present century banks were opened 
in a number of Indiana towns by Chicago capitalists and others from 
outside of the state. Some of these banks have survived, but a large 


immbtT of thciu were short-lived. In VM)0 a bank was started at 
Denver liy W. G. Green, formerly of Toledo, Ohio, and a Mr. Iloban 
opened a bank at nunker Hill. The Hunker Hill bank elosed its doors 
in May, 1901. A meetint; of tiie depositors was held on IMay 18. 
1901, at wliieh it was decided to reorganize and open the bank. This 
was done, but after a short time its affaii's were liquidated and the 
bank was closed permanently. Green's bank at Denver elosed on 
June 11. 1901, the proprietor leaving a note stating that he was 
eulled away from town but would soon return. The depositors be- 
came suspicious and upon .Mr. Green's return started a run on the 
bank that forced it to susi)end. Green was arrested by a deputy 
United States marshal and taken before the United States commis- 
sioner at Logansi>ort, where he was found iiniocent of any criminal 
intent and was released. The lloosier Basket Company at Denver 
was so seriously affected by the failure of the bank th{.t it was forced 
to suspend operations for a time. 

The Farmers" State Bank of Bunker Hill was established in 1906 
by local cai)italists. Its capital stock was fixed at .^25,000, all paid 
up, and tile bank has had a fairly prosperous career. In 1913 A. E. 
Zehring was president and J. W. Duckwall was cashier. The de- 
posits at the close of that year amounted to about $100,000. 

In 1907 the Farmers' Bank of Converse was incorporated with a 
capital stock of .$25,000, all of which is owned by local people. The 
deposits at the close of the year were in excess of $] 60,000. At that 
time Fred Green was president and J. Rich, cashier. This bank is 
located in a good building, commands the confidence of the com- 
munity ajid is well pati-onized by the citizens of Converse and the 
adjacent farmers. 

The town of Amboy has two banks. The ]Miami County Bank 
■was organized in 1902 and reorganized in 1907 with a capital stock 
of $13,500 and at the close of the year 1913 carried about $125,000 
in deposits. C. W. Cole was at that time president of the bank and 
O. C. Atkinson was cashier. The Amboy Bank began business in the 
early part of the year 1913. Its capital stock is $10,000 and accord- 
ing to the Bankers' Directory for July, 1913, its deposits then 
amounted to $15,000. M. P. Pearson is i)re.sident and II. East is 

The Citizens' Bank of ^Macy was organized on November 10, 1908, 
with a capital stock of $10,000. This stock was all subscribed and 
paid up by citizens of i\Iacy and the immediate vicinity. Jacob G. 
Smith is the president and S. H. Musselman, cashier. This bank has 
comfortable quarters on Commerce street and carries deposits amount- 
ing to $125,000. 


Ou June 3, 19U9, the Farmers' Bauk of Deiivei- began business 
with a paid up capital stock of $10,000. The officers of the bank at 
the opening were Ileury Lewis, president; I. C. Brower, vice-president; 
Noble B. Hunt, cashier. These gentlemen still retain their respective 
positions. A statement issued by this bank at the close of business 
on March 10, 1913, shows that at that time the surplus amounted to 
$1,500 and the deposits to nearly $80,000. The bank owns its build- 
ing and enjoys the confidence of its patrons. 

Banks were established at Mexico and Miami in the summer of 1913. 
C. H. Black, a prominent business man and manufacturer of Mexico, is 
at the head of the bank in that town and James Stedman is president of 
the iliami Bank. 

With the banks and trust companies in the city of Peru and 
those above enumerated in the other towns, Miami county is well 
provided with banking facilities. These financial institutions are all 
owned and controlled by citizen of the county, whose personal in- 
terests are identical with those of other citzens, hence each bank 
official and director in the county is interested in the maintenance 
of a policy that bj' promoting the general financial welfare of the 
community will enhance the profits of his own institution. Satisfied 
with reasonable returns from a banking business conducted along 
legitimate lines, the general policy of Miami county banks is to be 
conservative, but without being at the same time non-progressive. 
Most of the men at the head of these banks are men of experience in 
financial matters, whose judgment in business aifairs can be safely 
trusted, so that the institutions with which they are connected com- 
mand local confidence and credit abroad. 


For many years after the first white settlers came into Miami 
county, farming was practically the only occuiJation of the jjeople, 
and it is still the principal industry and source of wealth. Concern- 
ing the agricultural conditions, the last biennial report of the state 
bureau of statistics, published in 1912, says: 

"]\Iiami county, situated as it is in the center of the northern 
half of Indiana, includes within its borders nearly every industry 
known to that section of the state. The county is a rich agricultural 
one, and the variety of her soils enables her to produce every crop 
which can be grown in Indiana. Across the southern end of the 
county extends a broad belt of black loam. Through the center run 
the fertile vallevs of the "Wabash, the Mississinewa and Eel rivers. 


The soil ill the north eiul of llie eouiity is for the most part a sub- 
stantial clay, iiitcrs|)i'rsed with small areas of sand and muck. 

"All of the ortlinary farm crops are grown in abundance, and in 
the past few years products for the canning factory have been raised 
quite extensively. The possibilities of fruit raising on a commercial 
scale are just beginning to be realized and a number of first-class 
apple and pear orchai'ds liave been set out. Stock raising is carried 
on quite generally by the farmers and there ifre several fine breeding 
faiiuis in the couiily. Tlic eounty is now quite thoroughly drained 
and threaded li.\ ;i network of gravel roads." 

The following table shows the acreage and quantity of some of 
the leatling crops for the year 1911, the last year included in the sta- 
tistical report : 

Acres Bushels 

Wheat 38,409 7(il,742 

Corn 5-t,376 2,2-14,-504 

Oats 15,070 522,160 

Rye 294 4,588 

Potatoes 395 33,661 

Tomatoes 402 2,209 

Timothy hay 11,510 12,774 tons 

Alfalfa 230 404 tons 

Prairie hay 88 110 tons 

Clover lfi,008 13,879 tons 

The potato crop given in the table is only a little more than half 
that of the preceding year, when the acreage was 577 and the 
number of bushels raised 50,209. The production of ()rairie hay 
was less than half that of the year before, due principally to the fact 
tliat tile low lauds adapted to the production of i)rairie or marsh 
hay have pi-actieally all disappeared under the tliorough sy.stem of 
drainage and have been planted to more jirotitable crops. In 1910 
there were 1,007 bushels of Iterries and 2,374 bushels of apples, 
peaches, pears and plums raised in the county. In 1911 the berry 
crop had increased to 1,583 bushels and that of the other fruits to 
24,515 bushels. These figures bear out the statement of the statistician 
that "the possibilities of fruit raising on a commercial scale ai-e just 
begiiniiiig to })e i-ealized." Since that report was issued by the liureau, 
hundreds of fruit trees have been set out in all parts of the county and 
it is only a (|uestion of a short time when Miami will rank among the 
fruit growing counties of the state. 

It would not be fair to compare the total croj) of the eounty with 
that of other counties larger in area, but taking the average yield per 

Vol. 1—18 


acre of the leading products Miami makes a favorable showing. On 
this basis, of the ninety-two counties in the state, she stood fifth in the 
production of wheat, ninth in oats and sixteenth in corn. 

Below is given a table showing the number of animals of various 
kinds sold during the year 191]. Avith the selling value of each class: 

Horses and colts 1,039 $13-4,322 

Mules ^ 2-13 26,405 

Cattle '. 5,392 166,649 

Hogs ....39,256 465,404 

Sheep 5,660 20,504 

Poultry (all kinds) 7,066 dozen 57,423 

Considerable attention is given to dairying. During the year 
there were sold 2,329,835 gallons of milk, Avhich brought $257,972, 
and 268,254 pounds of butter, for $55,733. The number of dozen 
eggs marketed was 805,366, for which the farmers received $155,870. 

The number and value of farm animals on hand at the beginning of 
the year 1912 was as follows: 

Horses and colts 8,093 $805,865 

Whiles 650 73.370 

Cattle 14,094 354,711 

Hogs 33,990 222,496 

Sheep 6.816 27.281 

In connection with the agricultural and stock raising industry, it is 
worthy of note that John Miller, of Jefferson township, has taken more 
prizes at world's and state fairs and other live stock exhibits than any 
cattle man in Indiana. Mrs. Miller has two or more bed quilts made 
of ribbons awarded her husband in these stock show.s — most of them 
representing tirst prizes — and the supply of ribbons was not then 
exhausted. Mr. Miller has sold cattle all over the country and even to 
breeders in South America. Another prominent cattle raiser in the 
county is Clem Graves, of Pipe Creek township, who a few years ago 
sold a single Hereford liull foi- the handsome sum of $10,000, Since 
then he has sold his herd and engaged in other lines of business. 

The statistics above given indicate that the farmers of ]\liami county 
are prosperous, as a rule, and the traveler through the county sees 
evidence of this prosperity on every hand. Good dwelling houses and 
barns, bountiful crops and an abundance of live stock, much of which 
is of thoroughbred varieties, bear out the statement that the farmer is 
still the industrial king in the eountv. Another evidence of the 


fariners' prosi)urity is round iu the statistics, which sliow that during 
the year 1911 the indebtedness secured by farm mortgages was reduced 
from $585,384 to $318,665. 


The earliest manufactories in Jliami county were of the most simple 
character, intended to produce only such articles as were in demand in 
a new country. These first factories included saw and grist mills, 
the country tan-yard, wagon shops, an occasional hat factory, carding 
machines, etc. In the c-hapters on Township History will be found men- 
tion of a number of the early mills, hence it is not necessary to repeat 
their history in this chapter. 

Peru is naturally the manufacturing center of the county, being 
the county seat and greatest i-ailroad center. The first foundry in 
the city was established in 1843 by F. S. & George Ilackley. A new 
building was erected about 1860 and the business of the concern was 
greatly enlarged, the Junior partner retiring about that time. After 
the death of F. S. Hackley the business was continued by his son for a 
time, when the plant was sold to Thomas Lovett. Later the firm of 
Lovett & Rettig was formed and began the manufacture of agricultural 
implements. About 1884 A. -J. Ross succeeded to the business and con- 
ducted it for a while. Then after some further changes in ownership 
and management the buildings were acquired by the Standard Cabinet 
!Mainifaeturiiig Company. 

In 1853 the railroad shops of the Peru & Indianapolis (now the Lake 
Erie & Western) Railroad were built in the southwestern part of the 
city. Twenty years later they were removed to their present location 
in the northwestern part of the city and the old ])uildings were occupied 
by some Peru capitalists as a packing house. A considerable number of 
hogs were killed annually for e.\port, but the competition from the 
packing companies of Chicago, Indianapolis and Cincinnati became so 
great that the business was found to be unprofitable and was discon- 
tinued. When the Lake Erie shops were first opened in 1853 they 
employed about forty men on an average, the year round. According 
to the last report of the State Bureau of Inspection, Nie number employed 
in the shops in 1912 was 149. 

The Peru Woolen Mills were established in 1865 by H. E. & C. F. 
Sterne on West Canal street, just west of Broadway. The Commercial 
hotel now occupies part of the building. The first mill was what is 
known as a "five set" mill, i. e., consisting of five sets of cards, and had 
in addition some 1,500 spindles. This miU was destroyed by fire iu 
January, 1868, and a new building 66 by 300 feet was erected in the 


western part of the city. At the same time M. Oppeiilieimer was taken 
in as a partner. Siibsequentlj' two other buildings, each 44 by 300 feet, 
were erected and in 1874 L. Mergentheim became associated with the 
enterprise. In February, 1877, Harry W. Strouse succeeded Henry 
Sterne in the tirm and in 1886 the business was conducted by the firm 
of Mergentheim, Sterne & Strouse, which afforded employment to about 
150 people. During the palmy days of this industry the mills turned 
out large quantities of jeans, Hannels, cassimeres, blankets and other 
cloths and the firm won a number of premiums for the quality of their 
goods in competitive exliibits. Upon the death of Louis Mergentheim the 
mills were closed and stood idle for a number of years. Then Josiah 
Turner received a small bonus from the people of Peru and reopened 
the mills. His undertaking was not a success and the plant was sold 
to the Racine Woolen Mills Company, of Racine, Wisconsin, which carried 
on the business until the panic in the fall of 1907, when the mills were 
again closed. The best of the machineiy was afterward sold to the 
Mexico Woolen Mills Company when it was incorporated in 1912 and 
the buildings are now used as a sectional box factory by Cramer Brothers 
& Unger. 

There was at one time, probabl.y as early as the '50s, a woolen mill 
in the eastern part of the city, near the canal and east of the Howe 
factory. It was established by Asa Thomas and was run by water power. 
Later it was owned by Isaac Armfield, and still later by John and Ab. 
Wilson. The principal products were rolls and woolen yarns. 

East of this woolen mill Jesse Smith established a distillery at an 
early date. It did a dourishing business until the passage of the internal- 
revenue law Ifevying a tax upon spirits, when it was discontinued. A. C. 
Brownell was interested in this institution during the latter part of its 

Andrew Baldner once operated a brewery on Canal street, about a 
s(|uare east of Broadway, and at one time it was one of the prosperous 
business enterprises of Peru. Like the old water power woolen mill and 
the distillery, it has disappeared and scarcely a trace of these early 
industries remains to show where they stood. 

Wilkinson & Pomeroy's planing null was established in 1860 by 
Daniel Wilkinson, who came to Peru in that year with a sawmill, which 
was located in the southwestern part of the town. The sawmill burned 
in 1865, but was immediately rebuilt. Two years later Mr. Wilkinson 
sold out and built a frame structure where the present mill is located. 
This building was practically destroyed by fire in 1872, when the brick 
mill was erected. Some years later Mr. Pomeroy purchased an interest 
in the business and the miU now manufactures fine interior woodwork, 


sash, doors, office and store fixtures, ete. Daniel Wilkinson died aliout 
twenty nr twenty-five years ago, and his iic])hew, W;dter Wilkinson, 
heeanic liis suoeessor in the firm. 

In 1870. when the Howe Sewini; .Machine Conijjany was looking; i'oi' a 
location for a western branch, a representative of the company came to 
Pern with a proposition to establish a factory for the production of the 
woodwork, the factory to have a capacity of nine hundred machines 
per day and employ from four hundred to five hundred persons. The 
citizens of Peru donated a site and a larfje portion of the building 
materials and the concern began work under favorable auspices. The 
factory had not been ruiniing long when the buildings were almost com- 
pletely destroyed by fire, causing a property loss of something like 
.^200, 000. E. P. Loveland and John Cummings, two well known citizens 
of P«ru, lost their lives while trying to save the property by being caught 
by the falling roof. The plant was immediately rebuilt and continued 
under the name of the Howe Factory until 1875, when it was succeeded 
by the Indiana Manufacturing Company. Some donations were made 
to this company, which was regularly incorporated on July 1, 1875, with 
a capital stcjck of $500,000. Among the stockholders were A. N. Dukes, 
E. W. and M. Shirk, R. A. Edwards and A. J. Huffman. The company 
continued the manufacture of sewing machine woodwork, but added to 
it the manufacture of refrigerators and wooden rims for bicycles. Its 
products went to all parts of the United States and even to European 
countries and Australia. In 1881 it passed into the hands of a receiver — 
A. N. Dukes — who brought it out of its financial distress, increased the 
nuiuliei' of employees, erected some new buildings, reorganized it as the 
Indiana ^lainifacturing Company, and continued the manufacture of 
goods which annually found a larger .sale. In 1!)12 there were 367 people 
employed by the company, but the great flood of March, 1913, again 
forced the woi'ks into tlie hands of a receiver, the loss by the flood being 
reported as .'t;250,O0O. It lias since been purchased by the Shirk interests 
and reorganized as the United States Refrigerators Company. It has 
often employed as high as five hundred people. 

Tn 1871. the year following the establishment of the Howe factory, 
tile Claris Wheel factory was started in South Peru, the board of 
directors being constituted of Messrs. Maris. Shirk, Clifton, Rettig, Con- 
stant and Smith, in 1874 the factory was purchased by John Clifton, 
Sr., and the next year a fire caused a loss of $20,000. The concern was 
then reorganized as a furniture factory, but a year later the buildings 
were so badly damaged by fire that the enterprise was abandoned. The 
Clifl'toii brickyai'ds were once a paying ind^istry of South Peru, many 
of the brick used in I'crii having been made there. 


About the time this wheel facton- was started, or perhaps a few 
months earlier, John Coyle built a flax and tow mill in Peru. The 
next year a Mr. Torrey, of New Jersey, became associated with :\Ir. 
Coyle and a baggring mill was added. Some years later Coyle & Torrey 
were succeeded by the tirm of Lehman, Rosenthal & Kraus, who carried 
on the business for about twenty years. Mr. Rosenthal died, Mr. Lehman 
retired from the firm, and the mills were then operated by Charles J. 
Kraus & Sons, under the name of the Peru Bagging Company. For 
many years this mill had a large trade in the southern states, where its 
product was used in baling cotton. Jute bagging is one of the i)roducts 
affected by the tariff and this fact, together with the introduction of the 
cotton compress, rendered the business unprofitable and about 1909 the 
mills in Peru were closed. 

Gardner, Blish & Company removed to Peru from Antioch (now 
Andrews) in 1872 and started the Peru Basket Factory, which also 
manufactured hoops for barrels. Six years later the firm failed and 
James il. Brown was appointed receiver. The factory then passed into 
the hands of the Citizens' National Bank, which leased the building to 
Lewis Benedict in 1880. In 1882 Henton and Tall)ot purchased the plant 
and about eighteen months later Mr. Henton withdrew, leaving Frank 
M. Talbot sole pi-oprietor. He continued in the business until the spring 
of 1893, when he removed a part of the machinery away from tlie city, 
and in June the buildings were occupied by the Peru Basket Company, 
of which G. R. Chamberlain was president; Azro Wilkinson, secretary; 
and J. J. Ke^'CS, manager. For about a year the company ran a hoop 
factory in connection with the manufacture of baskets. This depart- 
ment was then abandoned. Some years later Mr. Wilkinson retired from 
the company and subsequently Mr. Keyes also withdrew, leaving Mr. 
Chamberlain in full control. In the winter of 1911-12 the buildings were 
partly destroyed by fire, but they were rebuilt and the company now 
employs about seventy people, turning out some two thousand dozen 
baskets weekly. 

B. F. Dow & Company, who had previously been engaged in the 
manufacture of farm implements at Fowlerville, New York, came to Peru 
in 1880 and secured a donation of !i^lO,000 to start a similar factory 
there. Buildings were erected north of the Wabash tracks and in May, 
1881, the factory began business. The principal products were portable 
engines and threshing machines, which were sold over a large territory, 
and in connection was a foundry for the purpose of supplying all kinds 
of repairs for farm implements. By November, 1883, the firm had 
become so deeph' involved financiallj' that the works were placed in the 
bands of J. G. Blythe as receiver. His final report was made on January 


1, 1887. iiffcr wliieli the Imildings were allowed to stand idle for several 
years, when they were taken by the Carbon Company. They are now 
oeeupied by the Peru Electric Company. 

About the time the Dow factory was established S. Tudor & Company 
started a packing house in South Peru for the purpose of packing butter, 
eggs and poultry for the New York market. Although not a large con- 
cern this house has continued in business and now employs about half 
a dozen people in handling poultry, eggs and dairy products. The old 
building in South Peru was burned and the firm removed across the 
river to Peru. 

On June 13, 1881, the first telephone exchange was opened in Peru 
by the Bell Telephone Company. At that time the telephone was almost 
in its infancy and its future undetermined. Three years later Charles 
H. Browiiell accjuired the John Muhlfield planing mill, started in 1879, 
near the junction of the railroad and Cass street, and soon afterward 
he began the manufacture of sound-proof telephone booths for use in 
hotel offices and at i)ublic pay stations. In this business he was a pioneer 
and as the tleinand for booths inei'eased he gradually relinquished the 
planing mill business and devoted his entire attention to the production 
of booths. In the course of time the business outgrew the old planing 
mill and a new factory — one of the best appointed in Peru — was erected 
in the western part of the city. The manufacture of bank and ofSce 
fixtures was tlun added. The works now employ about forty-five people 
and the pi'oduct is shipped to all parts of the country. The old factory 
building is now occupied by the Peru Auto Parts Company. 

The N-\tur.!VL Gas Era 

Soon after natural gas was discovered in Jay and Delaware counties, 
the people of Miami county became interested in the effect to ascertain 
if gas existed in that part of the state. Articles of as.sociation for the 
Peru Natural Gas & Fuel Company were filed on October 25, 1886, 
setting foi'th that the company desired to be incorporated for a period of 
fifty years, with a capital stock of $5,0U0 and a board of directors con- 
sisting of James 0. Cole, Milton Shirk, Charles H. Brownell, R. H. 
Bouslog. Charles C. Emswiler, Louis Mcrgentheim and Louis B. Fulwiler. 
This company bored three wells. The first was in the northern part of 
the city of Pera, where the drill went to a depth of 905 feet and pene- 
trated the Trenton limestone — the porous, gas-bearing rock — about thirty 
feet, but without finding gas. The second well was on the Jacob Miller 
farm, about a mile south of the city, where no better results were obtained, 
and the third well was on the Yonce farm, in Butler township. Here a 


small quantity of gas was found, but not enouirh to be of any eommert'ial 

A few Peru people were not yet satisfied and a eompany composed 
of some of the optimistic, who believed that gas could be found, drilled 
a well upon the Hearss farm about two and a half miles north of tlie 
city. Here the drill went to a depth of 1.041 feet and penetrated the 
Treuton limestone about thirty-two feet. Four successive failures con- 
vinced the most sanguine that gas could not be found in the immediate 
vicinity of Peru and no further efforts were made. 

The Xenia Gas and Pipe Line Company was incorporated on January 
25, 1887, with a capital stock of ^50,000, divided into five thousand 
shares of ten dollars each. Among the stockholders were J. W. Coan, 
R. W. Smith. L. M. Reeves, J. S. Kelsey, John 0. Frame, B. F. Agness, 
J. W. Eward. Frank Macy, D. 0. C. Marine, James Hatfield, M. F. 
Tillman and O. P. Litzenberger. Sweeney & Company, of Kokomo, were 
employed to drill a well and went down 937 feet, or thirty-one feet into 
the Trenton limestone. Gas was struck soon after the drill entered the 
Trenton formation, but at the same time a strong vein of water was 
also struck, which had the effect of weakening the flow of gas. The fact 
was demonstrated, however, that gas existed in that part of the county 
and a second well was drilled, which yielded enough gas to supply the 
town for domestic purposes. The company drilled eight wells altogether, 
five of which were within the corporate limits of the town of Converse. 
Before the close of the year a few farmers living west of Converse formed 
a company and drilled a well to supply their homes with fuel. The 
Xenia (Converse) Real Estate Company drilled a well in 1889, which 
furnished enough gas to supply the electric light plant, the hoop works 
and the Peerless Glass Works; and the Garrison Brothers, a few years 
later, drilled a well to supply their grist mill. 

The Amboy Gas and Oil Company was organized in April, 1887, and 
filed articles of a.ssociation with the county recorder on the 6th of May. 
Its capital stock was fixed at -$10,000 and the first board of directors was 
composed of J. Pearson, T. C. Overman, J. A. Baldwin, L. D. Lamm, 
A. A. Votaw, E. K. Friermood and W. H. Zimmerman. This company 
is credited with drilling the first successful gas well in the county. A 
Citizens' Gas Company was then organized as a mutual association, each 
member paying fifty dollars, which entitled him to the use of gas for 
domestic purposes as long as the supply lasted. This company struck 
one of the strongest wells in the Amboy field. In 1892 it was registering 
three hundred pounds natiiral rock pressure and was supplying forty 
families and two factories. 

In the fall of 1887 the Citizens Gas and Pipe Line Company was 
organized at Peru with a capital stock of $100,000. The officers and 
directors of the company were as follows: J. O. Cole, president; R. A. 


Edwanls, vice-president; C. C. Emswiler, treasurer; R. H. Houslog, secre- 
tary and manager; the above oflScers and Milton Shirk, C. II. Brownell 
and Louis B. Fulwiler, directors. This company drilled its first well 
one mile south of Amboy, where a fair supply of gas was found. The 
second one was on the farm of David Ilaifley and proved to be a failure. 
Then a third well was drilled on the Abbott farm, south of Amboy, and 
turned out to be one of the l)est in the county. Several other wells were 
put down southeast of Amboy and Converse and when the company had 
three good wells the work of piping the gas to Peru was commenced. 
On October 21, 1888, the gas was turned into the mains. As the pressure 
in the first wells began to decrease the company went into Howard and 
Grant counties and leased lands, having about eight thousand acres at 
one time under lease. The first winter after gas was introduced in Peru 
the city was supplied by six wells, but a few years later, when the pressure 
fell off, twenty-four wells were brought into requisition to keep up the 
supply. In May, 1895, the plant of this company was sold to the Dietrich 
syndicate, which owned a number of gas works or natural gas plants in 
Indiana. K. II. Bouslog remained in charge of the plant at Peru as 

. Tile discovery of natural gas in Indiana brought a number of new 
manufacturing enterprises into the gas belt. Among those which located 
in Peru was the ]Miami Flint Glass Works, which began operation in 
October, 1889. The factory was located in the northeastern part of 
the city, near the tracks of the Wabash and Lake Erie & Western rail- 
roads. John J. Kreutzer was at the head of the concern, which was 
known as an "eight pot"' factory, and the product consisted of glass 
tumblers, bottles, etc. The works did a good business while the gas lasted, 
but when the supply of fuel failed the factory was closed. 

Another manufacturing concern that was established in Peru during 
the natural gas era was the Standard Cabinet Manufacturing Company, 
which was incorporated in January, 1893, with a capital stock of $25,000 ; 
Jacob C. Theobold, president ; John G. Killinger, vice-president ; E.' G. 
Huber, secretary; John Knuchel, treasurer. A number of the stock- 
holders of this company worked in the different departments. This 
factory did not close with the decline of gas, but is still doing a good 
business in the manufacture of small novelties in cabinet work, battery 
boxes for automobiles, etc. The cooperative feature has been discontinued 
and the company has been reorganized. 

Nearly contemporary with the above is the Peru Electric iManu- 
facturing Company, whicli has already been mentioned. It was organized 
in 1893, with a capital stock of $100,000. .J. O. Cole was president; 
C. II. lirowncll. vice-president; K. II. I'.nuslog, secretary, treasurer and 


manager. Besides these officers the directors were R. A. Edwards, W. B. 
McCliutie, L. Mergeiitheim and F. M. Talbot. The company secured 
the buildings formerly occupied by the Dow factory, which had beeu 
vacated a short time before by the Cai-bon and Glass Comjjany, of which 
the Peru Electric Company was virtually a reorganization, located 
north of the Wabash tracks on Tippecanoe street. In 1910 the company 
went into the hands of a receiver, when a controlling interest was bought 
by C. H. Brownell and it was reorganized in its present form. Its chief 
business is the manufacture of porcelain insulators, which are shipped 
to all parts of the United States and Canada, and some are exported 
through jobbers in electrical supplies. From sixty to one hundred people 
are employed, owing to the demand for the company's products. 

In 1900 the Peru Steel Castings Company was incorporated, after a 
lively campaign to raise a bonus by the sale of lots, with Philip Matter, 
of Marion, as president. About three acres of ground were secured 
in the western part of Peru and fifteen buildings were erected before 
the works were opened or while they were in progress. The aim of the 
eomiiany was to manufacture traveling cranes for large manufacturing 
establishments, heavy castings for ship builders and railroad companies, 
pumps, generators, air compressors, etc. At one time over seven hundred 
men were employed and the factory was one of the largest ever estab- 
lished in Peru. The first casting was turned out in August, 1900, and 
for a few years the company .carried on an apparently successful busi- 
ness. Then the natural gas failed, a fire destroyed the plant and the 
works were closed, much to the regret of the Peruvians. 

In the summer of 1901 the Home Telephone Company was organized 
with a capital stock of $30,000; Louis B. Fulwiler, president; Jerome 
Herff, vice-president; John E. Yarling, secretary and manager, and 
Joseph M. Bergman, treasurer. These officers and W. A. Huff con- 
stituted the board of directors. In May, 1902, an exchange was opened 
at No. 101/^ South Broadway. The company met with a ready patron- 
age and when the plant was sold to the Central Union or Bell Tele- 
phone Company in August, 1912, it was operating about 3,000 tele- 

The Peru Canning Company was incorporated on ]\Iarch 30, 1905, 
with the following directors named in the articles of association : Pliny 
M. Crume, Joseph Bergman, R. H. Bouslog, R. A. Edwards, P. H. Rob- 
erts and Joseph Andres. In the organization of the board R. A. 
Edwards was elected president ; R. H. Bouslog, vice-president ; Pliny 
M. Crume, secretary ; P. H. Roberts, general manager ; Joseph Berg- 
man, assistant genei'al manager. On April 6, 1905, the company ordered 
machinery capable of putting up 1,200,000 two-pound cans annually 


and a littK' later a site was selected iu Elmwood, oii the Lake Erie & 
Western tracks. The factory was ready for opening by the time the 
canning season came on and has been in operation ever since, employ- 
ing from 250 to 300 people every year during the summer and fall 
months while the rush is on. 

Late in the year 1905, R. II. Houslog and R. A. Edwards, who owned 
some land just northeast of the city on the Chili pike, conceived the idea 
of platting their lands into lots and selling them, using the proceeds 
of the early sales to improve the streets and secure the location of new 
factories. A. N. Dukes, who also owned a tract of land adjoining, 
joined in the movement and the result was the Oakdale addition to 
Peru. The plat of the addition, showing 1,058 lots, was filed on Jan- 
uary 27, 1906, by the Oakdale Improvement Company, of which R. A. 
Edwards was president and F. il. Druram, secretary. Then began a 
campaign for the sale of lots by the Peru Commercial Club. A sales 
committee, with Arthur L. Hodurtha as chairman, was appointed and 
the addition was widely advertised. The campaign lasted for several 
weeks, during which timr aliout 700 of the lots were contracted for on 
the installment plan, and over 500 sales were actually consummated 
by the payment of installments. 

Among the factories brought to the city through this movement 
were the Mallmann Addograph Company, the Keudallville Furniture 
Company, the Parkhurst Elevator ^Manufacturing Company, the iModel 
Gas Engine Works, the Looth Furniture Company, Fox Brothers under- 
wear factory and the Chute & Butler piano factory. 

The Mallmann Addograph Company, which manufactured adding 
machines, ran for about two years, when it encountered financial diffi- 
culties and wound np its affairs. The liuildings then stood idle for 
awhile. l)ut are now occupied by a basket factory operated by Moeck 
& Redmon, the latter of whom was formerly interested in the Iloosier 
Basket Works of Denver, which closed when the bank in that town 
failed in 1901. 

The Keudallville Furniture Company has been succeeded by the 
Peru Chair Company, which makes a specialty of Morris chairs and 
employs about 50 or 60 skilled workmen. 

The Parkhurst works were taken over by the Otis Elevator Com- 
pany and operated until some time in 1912, when the factory at Peru 
was closed. The buildings were then occupied for a while by the Brown 
Commercial Car Company, manufacturers of motor trucks, but this 
company is now in the hands of W. B. McClintic as receiver. 

The ;Model (Jas Engine Company manufactures a full line of gas 
engines, but pays special attention to gasoline motors for automobiles. 


Its wares have been exhibited at various automobile shows in differeut 
parts of the country and have l)een favorably eomniented on by trade 
journals. It employs about 300 men. 

The Booth Furniture Company manufactures a general line of house- 
hold furniture and employs about 12.') people in all departments; the 
Fox Brothers JIanufaeturing Company makes all kinds of ladies' mus- 
lin underwear and according to the last report of the state bureau of 
inspection employed seven men and 68 women ; the Chute & Butler 
Company employ about 70 people, nearly all skilled mechanics, in the 
manufacture of their pianos and the instruments turned out at their 
factory compare favorably with those of the best piano factories in 
the country. 

Some time after the Oakdale addition had become an established 
fact, the Great Western Automoliile Works were established there, but 
without asking or receiving any bonus of any character. This company 
was started by local men with home capital. It manufactures passenger 
or tourist cars and has a capacity of about 300 vehicles a year. At the 
New York automobile show, January 5 to 10, 1914, the noiseless motors 
of the Great AVestern attracted a great deal of attention. motors 
were fully demonstrated and explained by a representative of the Model 
Gas Engine Company, which constructed them, and by this means Peru 
was given considerable notoriety as a maiuifacturing city. The com- 
pany employs about 50 people. 

One of the recent factories in Peru is the Auto-Parts Manufactur- 
ing Company, which came to the city about the close of the year 1909. 
In the fall of that year a canvass for the neces,sar3' funds to secure the 
factory was begun and iij a comparatively short time reached a suc- 
cessful termination by tlie suliscription of the amount required. This 
concern is a branch of a similar institution located at Jamestown, New 
York. As soon as the l)Ouus was made up tiie buildings near- the Wabash 
and Lake Erie & Western tracks, near the head of Cass street, formerly 
used by the C. H. Brownell telephone booth works, were purchased and 
within a few weeks the new factory was installed and in working order. 
It manufactures axles, brakes, shaft gearing and various other devices 
for automol)iles and supplies a number of automobile factories with 
these parts. 

In the early part of 1910 the Peru Commercial Club collected sta- 
tistics relating to the number of people employed in the manufactur- 
ing establishments of the city. Their investigation showed that in the 
leading factories 4,500 people were employed and the monthly pay roll 
amounted to a little over if;21 0.000. Since then there have been but 
few chanycs in the silualion. A few factories have increased their 


working force but otiurs lia\c iiiailc i'oriusi)Oii<liiig rc(liieti(>ns so 
that the nuiiiber of operatives and the amount of the monthly payroll 
remains ju-aetieally the saiiic. These figures did not include the Chesa- 
peake & Ohio Railroad shops, nor any of tlie factories that eniployed 
less than twenty-five people. 

The last publisheii report of tile state bureau of inspection gives 
the following list of Peru factories, with the number of employes in 
each: Automatie Sealing Vault Company (concrete burial vaults), 6; 
Booth Furniture Company, 1(18; C. H. Brownell, 41; Canal Elevator 
Company, 10; Chesajieake & Ohio Railroad shops, 325; Chute & Butler 
Company, 67; Fox Brothers, 75; Great Western Automobile Company, 
43; Hagenback & Wallace Shows, 500; Indiaiui Manufacturing Com- 
pany, 367: Lake Erie & Western Railroad Company, 149; Model Gas 
Engine Company, 125; Moeck & Redmon Basket Company, 58; Otis 
Elevator Companj', 105; Peru Auto-Parts Company, 68; Peru Basket 
Company, 68; Peru Canning Company, 266; Peru Chair Company, 51; 
Peru Electric Company. Ti); Peru Gas Company, 13; Peru Ice and 
Cold Storage Company, 11 ; Standard Cabinet Manufacturing Com- 
pany, 78; Wilkinson & Pomeroy (planing mill), 18; Wabash Railroad 
Company, 1,222. In adtlition to the above concerns the bureau also 
inspected and reported upon a number of other emplo.ving concerns 
and giving the niuuber of employees in each. Among them were two 
cigar factories, 16 employees; three coal and lumber companies, 38; 
three dry-goods and department stories, 70 ; two clothing stores, 22 ; 
six hotels and restaurants, 7S ; two laundries, 30; one transfer company, 
11; five contractors and builders, 145; thi-ee bakeries, 35; and a number, 
of miscellaneous small conc(>rns thai employed in the aggregate about 
100 more. 

The Oil Field 

No history of tlie industi-ial and conunercial resources of the county 
would be complete wilhout some account of the discovery of oil at 
Peru in 1S!)7 and the cxcitenient which followed. When the gas well 
was sunk in the northern part of the cit.v in 1887 a snudi quantity of 
oil was found and the pi'ediction was then made that oil would some 
day be found in paying (|uanti1ics. But the prospectors .just then 
were looking for gas and no attcnlidn was paid to tiie small (|uantity 
of petroleum. 

In the spring of 1897, when il was realized that the supply of 
natural gas would not last nuich longer, about one hundred citizens, 
headed by David H. Strouse, formed a tentative organization, known 


as the People's Oil Company, to bore for oil. The first well was bored 
on the B. E. "Wallace farm, just east of the Mississinewa river and 
proved to be a "dry hole." That well was paid for by each member 
of the company contributing ten dollars and the fund was exhausted 
in drilling the well. Then five-dollar subscriptions were taken to drill 
a well on a three-cornered tract of laud belonging to A. X. Dukes 
"just north of the end of Miami street and near the boulevard." 
Some of the old stockholders in the original arrangement did not 
contribute to the drilling of this well, but when oil was struck on 
July 19, 1897, they claimed to be members of the company and hur- 
ried to pay their five dollars each, in order to retain their member- 
ship in what looked like a winning game. 

At noon on the day oil was first struck, there were 150 feet of oil 
in the tube and at two o'clock it had risen to a height of 400 feet. 
Next morning, when the first visitors an-ived at the oil well they 
found the oil flowing out at the top of the pipe, at the rate of about 
fifteen barrels per day. The next day the well was capped until tanks 
could be constructed to take care of the oil, which was pronounced by 
experts to be of fine (luality. The People's Company was then regu- 
larly incorporated and an assessment levied upon the stockholders 
for funds to jjurchase tanks and pumping machinery. A committee, 
consisting of David Strouse, A. T. Reed, A. L. Bodurtha, Charles A. 
Cole, Frank Bearss, Lewis Baker, George Rettig, James H. Fetter and 
Dr. E. H. Griswold, was appointed to take charge of the well with full 
power to care for and market the oil. 

Well No. 2 was drilled by the People's Company before the end 
of August and came in with 150 barrels per day. Then the excite- 
ment began to be made manifest. Oil men from all over the country 
flocked to Peru, some of them to drill wells, but the majority of them 
to lease lands and hold them for speculation. Probably a score of 
oil companies were organized and incorporated within sixty days from 
the time the first oil was sti'uck. Hotels and restaurants were crowded 
with visitors to the new oil field and livery men reaped a rich harvest 
in taking prospectors to see land owners with a view to obtaining 
leases. Newspaper correspondents from many of the metropolitan dailies 
came and saw, and write glowing accounts of the Peru oil field, whicli 
added to the excitement and increased the number of prospectors. 

Among the oil companies organized were the Peru Oil Company, 
with a capital stock of $200,000; C. H. Brownell, president; R. A. 
Edwards, vice-president ; R. H. Bouslog, secretary and treasurer. 

The Miami Oil and Gas Company was incorporated on September 
13, with seventy-five stockholders ; Michael Burke, president ; W. H. 
Zimmerman, vice-president ; Leroy Shauman, secretary and treasurer. 


Tills foinpaiiy was organized to drill wells on the property of Frank 

The Klondike Oil Company was oi-^aiuzed with C. S. Jaekson aa 
president; W. S. Lentz, vice-president; John O'Hara, secretary, V. 
S. Jackson, treasnrcr, and Joseph Rergnian, manager. The first wells 
drilled by thi.s eomjjany, which was purely a home institution, were 
on the Reilly laud cast of the old fair ground and along the Wabash 

The .Mcrccr-Kicr Oil Company was composed of women, with Mrs. 
W. S. Mercer, president; Miss Ida Kier, secretary and treasurer; Mrs. 
Mattie fiercer, ^Irs. Avery Tudor and IMrs. Walter Emswiler as stock- 
holders and directors. The iirst well was drilled on the Mercer prop- 
erty and later this company struck the largest well in the field on the 
Charters farm, flowing 800 barrels. 

The Oil City Oil and Uas Company was officered by J. S. Lenhart, 
president ; Roscoc Kimple, vice-president ; P. M. Crume, secretary, 
and Andrew Wey, treasurer. 

Judge J. T. Cox was president of the Indiana Oil Company; W. S. 
Mortin, of Montpelier, was vice-president; W. B. McCliutic, secretary, 
arrd W. H. Zinnnerman, treasurer. 

The Valley Oil Company was first organized by A. T. Reed, A. 
L. Bodurtha, Harry and David Strouse. These men leased land and 
did the first " wildeatting, " but drilled only one well. 

The Equality Oil Companj^ was organized for the purpose of drill- 
ing wells on some vacant lots on Eighth street. John Skinner was 
president of the company ; P. H. Watkins, vice-president ; John 
Spnrgeon, secretary; Harry Young, treasurer. 

Then there were the Farmers' Oil Company, in which the Tillets 
were conspicuous, the Eureka Oil Company, the Trenton Rock Oil, Gas 
and Alineral Company, tlu' Home Oil and Gas Company, the United 
States Oil Company, the Funke Oil Company, the Runyan Company, 
the Cover Company and several others. Three large oil supplj' stores 
were opened in Peru and did a thriving business. 

On September 10, 1897, there were three producing wells — two of 
the People's and one of the Runyan Company — that yielded a little 
over 500 barrels daily. The Runyan well was on the outlot of James 
M. Brow-n, just east of Grant street, and its daily outflow was about 235 
barrels. At that time several companies were drilling in the immediate 
vicinity and on the loth there were more than twenty-five derricks 
within sight of the first well. The People's Company then had three 
wells in action, producing 700 barrels daily. Oil was the universal 
topic of conversation. Nearly every owner of a lot adjacent to the 


oil field was anxious to have a well drilled on liis premises. Several 
injuuetioii suits were filed to prevent the drilling of wells too close to 
others, or to enjoin the owner of a well from shooting it to increase 
the flow at the expense of near-by -wells, but most of these suits came 
to naught. By the middle of November the field contained 160 wells, 
of which 137 were producers, and the daily output was over 5,000 
barrels. A month later it was estimated that ninety per cent of the 
oil produced in Indiana came from the Peru field. 

At the opening of the year 1898 there were 230 wells, the average 
cost of which was about .$1,200. Hence, more than .'1;275,000 had been 
expended in the quest for oil. A majority of the wells were pro- 
ducers, but in a number of instances the .supply of oil obtained did 
not pay the cost of drilling the well. During the year 1898 a large 
number of town lot wells were drilled, the average production of 
such w( lis being less than eight barrels per day. From the first there 
was considerable .speculation as to whether the Peru oil field was really 
a field or just a pocket. Some believed that the supply was inexhaust- 
ible and proceeded on that theory to make their oil investments and 
conduct their operations. Others, who held to the pocket theory, pro- 
ceeded with more caution and in the end these were the ones who catne 
out of the oil excitement with more money than when they started 
in. By the spring of 1899 none of the wells was producing as much 
oil as at first and it became apparent that the field was really a pocket, 
although a large one. In 1899, according to the report of the state 
geologist, only four wells were drilled, while on the other hand thirty- 
seven that had been producing oil grew so weak that they were aban- 
doned. That was the beginning of the end. Gradually the pressure 
diminished until the expense of pumping the oil became so great that 
the business was unprofitable and the people turned their attention 
to other lines of business as bringing better results. 

Outside Industries 

Outside of the city of Peru there are or have been but few manu- 
facturing establishments. About 1869 E. S. Lee built a planing mill 
and stave factory at Converse and later added machinery for making 
tow from flax, but the mill was burned in 1874 and never rebuilt. 
Another stave factory was started in that town by A. B. Fisher in 1870. 
It was removed to Union City a few years later. John Coyle established 
a tow and flax mill at Converse about the same time he opened his mill 
at Peru. When he was succeeded by Lehman, Rosenthal & Kraus the 
Converse mill was operated by the new firm for a few years, when the 


mai/liiiiiT.v was taken to PiTii. The tloiir mill a1 t 'oiixiTse was built hy 
\Vri<iht i-t ^Ii-Kei'ly in 1868. It was ivljuilt and greatly enlarged hy 
Draper, Long & Harger in 1882. When gas was discovered in 1887 a 
number of new faetories were located at Converse. Among them were 
the Iloosier Canning Company, the ^lalleable .St(>el Works, the Peerless 
Glass Works, the Converse Carriage Company, a large pressed brick 
works, a vise factory and a factory for the manufacture of gas fixtures, 
but all were discontinued or removed elsewhere wlii'U the sujiply of 
gas gave out. 

On May 2, 1876. the Mexico Manufacturing Company was incor- 
[)orated with a capital stock of $10,000 and the following officers: Daniel 
Griswdld, president ; C. II. Kline, secretary ; J. L. Wilson, treasurer. 
These officers, with Benjamin Graft and Joseph Brewer, constituted the 
board of ilirectors. The company was organized for the purpose of ' 
making all kinds of furniture, including church furniture and bank 
lixtures. A good building was erected on the bank of the Eel river, in 
the northern part of town, and equipped with the best machinery known 
in that day and business was commenced under favorable conditions. 
Traveling salesmen extended the business of the company over a large 
field, but after several years the company found itself handicajjped by a 
lack of ade(iuate shipping facilities and confronted with other adverse 
conditions and the factory was discontinued. 

In 1910 J. H. Thompson, proprietor of the roller mills at Mexico, 
engaged C. H. Black to build a new dam across the Eel river to furnish 
water power to the mill and other entei'prises, such as the light and 
power plant. This dam withstood the great flood of 1913 without the 
slightest injury. It is built of reinforced concrete and is said to be one 
of the best dams in the state. After this dam was completed it was 
found that the power furnished was sufficient to supply other factories 
and in 1912 the Mexico Woolen Mills were incorporated with Charles 
H. Black as president; Webster Edwards, vice-president; Leroy Graft, 
secretary ; George D. Wilson, treasurer, and these officers with John 
Kramer form the board of directors. The better part of the machinery 
in the old woolen liiills at Peru was purchased and taken to Mexico, and 
on April 28, 1913, ground was broken on the west bank of the Eel river 
near the dam for a concrete building 60 by 150 feet, cast upon the site, 
the first building of the kind in Miami county. Quoting from a state- 
ment issued by the company, these mills will make a "specialty of fancy 
yarns, blankets, automobile robes and any novelty the trade demands; 
the eciuipment is the best in its line and the prospects of the company 
are most excellent." 

Some thirty or thirty-five years ago Orlando Mo.sely established a 


machine shop in "Wasliington township, on the Strawtown pike, for 
the manufacture of an improved picket wire fence, fence machines, and 
to do a general repair business. This factory is not now in existence. 
Henry ilosely located in the same neighborhood and started a hydraulic 
eider mill and .icily factory and in the early '90s added a large sorghum 
mill to his equipment. 

The principal manufacturing industries in the towns of Amlioy, 
Bunker Hill and Maey have been saw and tlour mills, brick and tile 
factories. A brewery was built in South Peru by George Rettig before 
the Civil war. Later it passed into the hands of Omer Cole and was 
conducted by him for many years. Its e(iuipmeut was equal to that 
of any brewery in the state and it is said the quality of its beer was 
unexcelled. After the passage of the local oj^tion law so many of the 
counties in Indiana "went dry" that the brewery was closed. 



First Schools in Induna — Congressional School Fund — State 
Endowment Fund — Pioneer School Houses — Character of the 
Early Te/chers — The Three R's — County Seminaries — Peru 
Collegiate Institute — AVilliam Smith's School — Denver College 
— First High School in Peru — Present High School — Value op 
School Property in the County — Vocational Education — County 
Superintendents — Distribution op School Funds — Parochial 
Schools — The Press — Briep Histories op the Various Newspapers 
— John A. Graham — Early Library Projects — Peru Public 
Library — School Libraries. 

As in the case of the industrial progress and social structure of 
Indiana and Miami county, the educational development has been a 
gradual evolution. The first instruction given to the scattering white 
inhaliitants along the Wabash river came from the Catholic missionaries, 
who were among the first to penetrate the western wilds in their efforts 
to convert and civilize the natives. As early as 1719 Father Marest 
wrott' from one of the French posts to his superior: 

"As these people have no books and are naturally indolent, they 
would shortly forget the principles of religion, if the remembrance of 
them was not recalled by these continued instructions. We collect the 
whole community in the chapel and after answering the questions put by 
the missionary to each one, without distinction of rank and age, prayers 
are heard and hymns arc sung." 

After resident priests came they made efforts to instruct the children 
to read and write, but the progress was slow for some time, owing to 
the many obstacles to he overcome. Probably the first regular .school in 
the state was that taught by Father Rivet at Viucennes in 1793. 

The act of congress, under which Indiana was admitted to the union 
as a state, donated Section IG in each Congressional township as the 
basis for the establishment of a permanent school fund. This land, or 
the proceeds arising from its sale, was placed in charge of three trustees 
in each civil town.ship, up to 1859, since which time there has been but 



one trustee. For mauy years the value of the school lands was so small 
that the growth of the permanent fund was slow and the people were 
compelled to pay a portion of the cost of maintaining the schools out of 
their private means. Congress also gave to the state certain swamp and 
saline lands, and two entire Congressional townships — 76,080 acres — 
were donated for the support of state seminary or university. In 1836 
the general government distributed to the states the surplus in the 
United States ti-easury, when Indiana received i);860,254. of which 
$573,502.96 went into the permanent school fund. In addition to these 
donations from the United States, the state, by its constitution and 
various acts of the legislature, has provided a permanent endowment 
fund for the schools, which fund is derived from several dift'erent sources. 
At the present time the Congressional fund is, in round numbers, about 
$2,500,000, and the state endowment fund is approximately $9,000,000. 
By a wise provision of the founders of the public school system, this fund 
may be increased, but it can never be diminished, only the income being 
available for the current of the schools. 

The ])ioneer school house was nearly always a building of round 
logs, with a clapboard roof and a rough door hung on wooden hinges. 
Sometimes a puncheon floor was provided, but in many cases the only 
floor was "mother earth." At one end was a huge fireplace and a 
chimney constructed of stones, sticks and clay. In real cold weather, 
when a roaring fire was maintained, those near the fireplace would get 
too warm, while those in the rear of the room would be suft'ering with 
cold, hence the pupils were constantly asking permission to change seats 
in order to overcome this unequal distribution of warmth. On each side 
of the house, about four feet above the floor, one log would be left out and 
the opening covered with oiled paper to admit light. If the school dis- 
trict was fortunate enough to afford some window glass, eight by ten 
inches in size, the school house could boast the luxury of real windows. 
The "furniture" consisted of benches made of split saplings, smoothed 
with the draw-knife and supported by wooden pins. Under the window 
was a wide board resting upon large pins driven into the wall, which 
constituted the wTiting desk for the entire school. Here the children 
would take turns at writing, using a goose quill pen and ink made of 
pokeberry juice or a solution of maple bark and copperas. The "copy- 
books" were generally home-made, consisting of a few sheets of foolscap 
paper covered with a piece of heavy wrapping paper. At the head of the 
page the teacher would write the "copy," which was usually some proverb 
intended to convey a moral lesson as well as a knowledge of penman- 
ship — such as "Evil communications corrupt good manners"; "What- 
ever is worth doing is worth doing well," etc. 



Coinparril willi tlir ifiu-licrs of tlie |)i-csi'iit day, tlic schoolmaster of 
three-quarters of a ecntiiry ago would be considered illiterate and incom- 
petent. If he could "do all the sums" in Pike's arithmetic as far as 
the "rule of three," read and spell fairly well, and write well enough 
to set copies for the children to follow he was equipped for his work. As 
reading, writing and arithmetic were the only branches taught, and as 
these w'ere referred to as "lieadin', Ritin' and Rithmetic," the curri- 
culum of the early schools gave rise to the expression — the three R's — 
which were considered all the necessary elements of a practical educa- 
tion. As there was not much money to be had Irom the public funds 
prior to 185D, the schools before that date were known as "subscription" 
schools, the teacher receiving from one dollar to two dollars for each 

I'Eur lliuii School 

pupil for a term of three months. Most of the teachers were adventurous 
Yankees from the East, or Irishmen, who would teach one term in a 
neighborhood to provide means to get thciii to another. As a rule they 
were unmarried men, who "boarded round" among the patrons of the 
school, thus giving the parents an opportunit.y to pay at least a part 
of their children's tuition by lioarding the teacher. There was one (lualifi- 
cation in the teacher that could not be overlooked, and that was he must 
be able to "lick" the big boys into submission in case they became 
unruly. Conse(|Ucntly. in every early schoolhouse could be seen a bundle 
of beech, willow or hazel rods, waiting for some youngster to Iireak one 
of the rules laid down by the pedagogue. 

In summer time school opened at seven o'clock in the morning and 
continued in session foi' ten hours, with the exception of the noon hour, 


and two short recesses — one in the forenoon and the other in the after- 
noon. The first thing the child was required to learn was his "A B C's." 
When he knew all the letters by sif^ht he was taught to spell simple 
words, and when his vocabulary had increased to a certain point he was 
given a First Reader. This process was slow but sure and many of the 
great men of the nation received the rudiments of their education in 
this old-fashioned manner. 

But times have changed. Tlie old log schoolhouse has gone, never to 
return, and in its place has come the stately edifice of stone or brick, 
with plate glass windows, steam heat and scientific methods of ventila- 
tion. The rude, backless benches have been supplanted by varnished 
desks, the goose quill pen and home-made copy-book have disappeared, 
and corporal punishment is only a dim recollection. Almost every school 
has its reference library and hundreds of dollars are annually expended 
for globes, maps, charts, or other paraphernalia to aid the teacher in 
imparting instruction. 

In the historical sketches of the several townships in Chapters VII 
and VIII will be found accounts of the early schools in the rural dis- 
tricts, as well as statistical information showing the condition of the 
public schools of each township at the present day. 

The Indiana legislature of 1828 passed an act providing for the build- 
ing and maintenance of county seminaries in the several counties of the 
state at the public expense. These seminaries were to be supported, in 
part at least, by the fines levied against offenders for violation of the 
penal laws and commutations for military service. It was further pro- 
vided that the county commissioners in each county should appoint a 
trustee, whose duty it shoud be to invest the money properly and in all 
other ways act as custodian of the "seminary fund." This law had been 
in effect about seven years before Miami county was organized. Not 
long after the county government was placed in operation, the commis- 
sioners appointed William N. Hood, one of the proprietors of the town 
of Peru, as trustee. Other citizens who served in this capacity during 
the next eight years, or up to 1845, were Daniel R. Bearss, Eli Pugh, 
William Cole, E. P. Loveland, Albert Cole, I. R. Leonard and G. W 

There were not many fines collected in the county during the first 
few years of its history, nor were there many receipts from military 
commutations. Consequently the accumulation of a fund for the estab- 
lishment and support of the seminary was necessarily slow. To supple- 
ment the workings of the law and hasten the day when the seminary 
could be built, it was proposed to solicit private contributions. It was 
•plain that there was a demand for some institution in which some of the 


higher hi-iiiirhcs oi' learning shoukl be taught aiul it was Ijelieved that 
the people wouhl elieerl'ully donate toward its establishment. The citi- 
zens of Peru promised to contribute, iu mouej' ami building materials, 
something over !|!2()(). At that time Mexico was a rather ambitious town 
and the people there agreed to give real estate and building materials 
to the value of .$l,l)OU to secure the seminary. The oft'er of Mexico was 
accepted, a selection of a site was made, and the contract for the erec- 
tion of a brick building, 35 by 45 feet and two stories in height, was 
let at public auction. AVhen the walls were completed to the top of the 
first story, the people of Mexico failed to provide the necessary material 
for the completion of the building, and the work was suspended. The 
seminary fund amounted to about $1,700 and when the seminary project 
failed wliat was left of that sum was merged into the common school 

In the Mieanlime the Peru Collegiate Institute had been chartered by 
the state legislature. Rev. John Stocker, a Presbj'terian clergyman, was 
the first jirincipal and his wife, who was an accomplished woman, was 
associate principal. The school opened about 1837, with a good patronage 
and promise of a bright future. Among those who served on the board 
of directors were James B. Fulwiler, William N. Hood, Richard L. Brit- 
ton and A. S. Keiser. After a time financial difficulties arose and the 
school was discontinued, much to the regret of many of the citizens, who 
had lioped that it might become a permanent institution. 

There had been a school taught in Peru, however, before the opening 
of the Collegiate Institute. In the fall of 1834 William Smith erected 
at his own expense a log house, 18x24 feet, and upon its completion taught 
a subscription school, the tuition charge for each pupil for a term of 
three months being $2.50. The average attendance was about ten scholars, 
which paid Mr. Smith the princely sum of $25.00 for his three months' 
work, and in addition to his labors he furnished the house and the fuel. 
This might be considered the beginning of the city's school system. The 
second sclioolhouse was built on the north side of Third street, between 
Cass and Miami streets, and the third was erected on Broadway, but it 
was used only a short time. 

The seminary estalilished in 184!) or 1850 by Rev. Milton Starr, 
pastor of the Presbyterian church, was quite a pretentious institution of 
learning for Peru. Mrs. Starr, who was the principal, was an educated 
woman from the famous seminary at Mount Holyoke, -Massachusetts, 
and her sister was also one of the teachers. The seminary was located 
on the north side of West Third street, between Broadway and Miami 
streets. Its exact location was on the middle lot between the alley 
and Miami street. The school was continued for a short time under the 


direction of Rev. F. S. McCabe after he beeame pastor of the ehureh. 
For many years after the school was discontinued the building was 
used as a double tenement house and one-half of it is still standing. 

In 1876 a joint stock company was organized at Denver for the 
purpose of establishing a private school to be known as Denver College. 
A good brick building was erected at a cost of $3,500 and the school was 
opened in the fall of that year with Professor J. A. Reubelt in charge. 
Although the institution started off under promising circumstances, the 
anticipations of the founders were not realized. After teaching two 
terms .Mr. Reubelt resigned and Professors Hershey and McGinley took 
control of the school. They failed to make it a success and the company 
was disbanded. The building was then turned over to the proper 
authorities and became the Denver public school. 

The first exclusive high school building in the city of Peru was located 
at the southwest corner of Sixth and Broadway. This building had for- 
merly been occupied as a livery barn, but after it was acquired by the 
city it was thoroughly renovated and remodeled for school purposes. 
Here the high school was located until the erection of the present magnifi- 
cent building on the northwest corner of Sixth and Miami streets, where 
the old central sehoolhouse formerly stood and which was used both as 
a graded and high school. The school board that erected the present high 
school structure ,was composed of Charles R. Hughes, president ; Joseph 
A. Faust, seci-etary ; Lorenzo Hoffman, treasurer, and John F. Unger. 
The building was designed by Griffith & Fair, a firm of Fort Wayne 
architects, and the contractor was Frederick J. Bump, also of that city. 
The total cost was about .~|5lOO,000 and it was opened for school at the 
beginning of the fall term in 1911. In this building Peru has one of 
the model high schools of the state and the course of study is in keeping 
with the best schools of that nature in Indiana. It is an institution of 
which the people of Peru and Miami county may justly feel proud. In 
addition to the high school the city has four other public school build- 
ings, the total value of school property being over $200,000. Dviriug 
the school year of 1912-13 there were fifty teachers employed in the city 
schools, nine of whom were in the high school, and the amount paid these 
instructors in salaries was $33,334.50. 

The estimated value of all the school property in the county at the 
close of the school year that ended in the spring of 1913 was $445,225 ; 
the number of teachers employed in all the schools was 207, and the 
amount paid in salaries to teachers was $101,479.41. The total nuinber 
of pupils enrolled during that school year was 5,732. 

In his report for the year 1913, County Superintendent Edd B. 
Wetherow says: "The trustees of ]Miami county are making an honest 

HISTORY OF .Ml A:\II county 2!)7 

effort to cnt'oi'cc tlir new vocMtional riliicatioii law. Agricultufc is taufrlit 
to all boys ill tlu' eighth year in the township sehools, and in most of 
the iiigh si'hools. Sewing is taugiit to ail girls in the seventii and eigiitli 
years and in soiiu' iiigii schools. Cooking is taught in grade Imildiiigs 
at Hunker Hill and Deedsville. Manual training is taught to seventh 
and eighth year hoys at Waupeeong. North Grove, Denver, Mexico, (Jilead, 
Ridgeview, Bunker Hill, Nead, Chili and Deedsville — and in seine of 
these sehools it is tautilit in tlie high school. We are attempting to 
use the same outline of work in these subjects in the township schools. 
By visiting the sehools the parents and taxpayers may learn what is 
being accomplished in these subjects." 

The township sehools referred to in the report include all the public 
schools in the county e.\cept those in the city of Peru and the towns 
of Amboy and Converse. The school at Aiiiboy is a joint school between 
the town and Jackson township. 

In 1873 the Indiana legislature passed an act establishing the otifice 
of county superintendent and defining his duties. The law became 
effective in Juue of that year and the first incumbent of the office in 
Jliami county was AV. Steele Ewing, who seiTcd for six years. He was 
succeeded by N. W. Trissal, who held the office but a single term. Since 
then the superintendents have been A. J. Dipboye, W. A. AVoodring, 
John P. Lawrence, John H. Runkle, E. H. Andrews, P. S. Sullivan and 
E. B. Wetherow. The last named was elected in June, 1907, for a term 
of four years and at the close of that term was reelected. His present 
term expires in June, 1915. 

The total amount of money collected on the common school fund men- 
tioned in the opening of this chapter is apportioned to the different 
counties of the slate, according to the number of children between the 
ages of six and twenty-one years living in the county. In January, 1914, 
the auditor of ^liaini county made the following distribution of school 
funds to the townshijjs, towns and cities. 

Allen township ,$ fi37.37 

Butler township 622.59 

Clay township 711.24 

Deer Creek township 599.38 

Erie township 297.58 

Harrison township 576.16 

Jackson township 451.65 

Jefferson township 964.49 

Perry township 795.66 

Pern townsliip 966.61 


Pipe Creek township 901.18 

Richland township 605.71 

Union township 502.30 

"Washington township 1,010.92 

Town of Amboy 308.13 

Town of Converse 506.52 

City of Peru 5,797.52 

Total for the c-nnnty $16,255.01 

Some time during the pastorate of Rev. M. J. Clark, of St. Charles 
Catholic church a school was established in connection with the parish. 
The attendance was not confined to the children of Catholic families. 
People of other denominations recognized the ability of Father Clark 
and sent their children to his school. When he left Peru the school was 
discontinued and was not revived for a long time. Father Bernard 
Force came to the parish in April, 1860, and just before that a term 
of school had been taught by a Badinese student named Volkert. Father 
Force opened a school in the church building, Franz Edtler being the 
tirst teacher. When the new church was built the old one was converted 
into a schoolhouse. Prior to 1870 the boys and arirls were taught together, 
but in that year Father Kroeger induced the I'rsuline nuns of Louisville, 
Kentucky, to send some of their order to teach the girls' school. Four 
years later they were succeeded by the Sisters of Providence, who 
also took charge of the boys' school in September, 1881. 

The Lutheran parochial school was established in 1865, with F. Kohrs 
as the first teacher. When the new chui'ch at the corner of Main and 
Fremont was completed in 1876 the old church on West Second street 
was taken for school purposes. With the growth of the congregation and 
increase in population of the city of Peru, there came a greater demand 
for better educational facilities and in 1905 the present school building 
on West Second street, just west of Hood street, was erected. It is a 
large brick building, of modern design, two stories in height and will 
doubtless be of sufficient capacity to meet all the needs of the parish for 
several years to come. 

The Press 

As a factor in the educational development of any community the 
newspaper plays an important part. It disseminates information of gen- 
eral character, keeping its readers in touch with what is going on in the 
world and giving them a broader view of life. Numerous short articles 


ill the <'oliiiiiiis of the newspaper have liceii of great Iteiietit to the reader, 
wlio, it might be said, almost unconsciously absorbs new ideas that prove 
valuable to him in his daily vocation. Hints to farmers on planting and 
harvesting in these latter days supplement the work of tlie agi-ieultural 
college, and many a housewife has read with pi-olit some well written 
item on domestic economy. 

The first printing pi'ess in .Miami county was I)rought to I'eini in 
1837. It had been used at Richmond for the publication of the Richmond 
PaUadiiim. Three years before the outfit was brought to Peru Sanuiel 
Pike came from Leesburg, Ohio, with a stock of merchandise for James 
B. Fulwiler. He had been engaged in the newspaper business in Ohio 
and persuaded some of the citizens that what the town needed was a 
newspajiei- to advertise its merits and advantages abroad. Accordingly, 
an a.ssociation was formed ; the pi'ess and other materials were brought 
from Richmond : Pike was put in charge as editor, and on July 22, 1837, 
the first number of the Peru Forester made its appearance. It was sus- 
pended in January, 1839, and from that time to 1848 no less than six 
papers were printed on the old press. 

First came the Peru Gazette, which was started by James B. Scott 
and Augustus Banks as a Wliig organ, the first number making its 
appearance on July 20, 1S39. John H. Scott bought a half interest in 
the paper on April 16, 1842, and, as he desired to conduct his part of the 
paper in the interests of the Democratic party, the paper, which was 
called the Peru Gazette-Peru Demoerat, was half Whig and half Demo- 
crat. The last issue of this peculiar publication was dated October 15, 
1842. Then came the Cork Screw, a humorous publication, the editors of 
which announced themselves as "Nehemiah, Ilezekiah and Obadiah." 
It lasted but a few months, when James B. Scott again acquired the plant 
and started the Peru Ohserrcr. It was a Whig paper and continued 
until June 28, 1845. Next John H. Scott published a Democratic paper 
called the Peru Herald from November 28, 184(5, to some time in May, 
1848. About a month later John A. Gi-aham bought the press and type 
and on June 28, 1848, published the lii'st number of tlie Minmi County 

As ^Ir. Graham founded the first newspaper to endure for any length 
of time, he might be termed the Nestor of Miami county 
He was born at Baltimore, Maryland, Januaiy 8, 1817, his parents having 
come from Ireland two years before. After residing for a short time 
in Pittsburgh and Wheeling, the family returned to Baltimore and in 
1830 removed to Harper's Ferry, Virginia. Two years later the parents 
■came to Indiana, but the son remained in Harper's Ferry as a clerk 
in a store until the spring of 1835. Taking passage on a steamboat 



at Wheeling, he descended the Ohio to the mouth of the Wabash, where 
he was put ashore at midnight. Not finding a town, as he had expected, 
he sat on the bank of the river until daylight, when he climbed to the 
top of the bluff and discovered a house not far away. He was fortunate 
enough to find a steamboat about to ascend the Wabash and took passage 
as far as Clinton. From that point he took the stage to Lafayette and 
from there walked to Peru. He entered the employ of Alexander Wilson 
and was sent to Logansport, where he worked in a store until 1838, when 
he returned to Peru. In the fall of 1839 he became a partner of Mr. 
Wilson. In 1841 he was elected sheriff of Miami county and in February, 



Old Sextixel Office, Soithwest corner of Main and Broadway, 


1846, he was appointed as a clerk in the canal land office, where he 
remained until the office was removed to Logansport the succeeding 
year. He then bought the printing outfit and began the publication of 
the Sentinel, as above stated. Mr. Graham was a representative delegate 
to the constitutional convention of 1850 ; was a special agent of the 
United States to pay the Miami Indians their annuities in 1858. 1859 
and 1860 ; was elected county clerk in 1866 ; was mayor of Peru from 
1882 to 1888, and in 1877 wrote the first published history of I\Iiami 

The Miami County Sentinel was continued under Mr. Graham's man- 
agement until August 16. 1861, when it was suspended for a time. In 


1850 the office was rclitttd, with the excc]itic)ii of tlie pri'ss. and on 
June 1!), 1854, -Mi', (iiahani hcjjan the issue of a daily edition — the first 
daily to be puhlisiied in tlie couuty. He soon learned, however, 
that the town was not yet large enough to support a daily 
and on July 25tii it was suspended. Wilson H. Lough I'iilge suc- 
ceeded Mr. Graham, hut soon sold out to T. J. .McDowell. In 1867 
Lougliridge again became the owner and in 1S74 J. C. Foley became his 
partner. A year later the lirni was eoni))oscd of Foley, Jameson & Con- 
ner. J. A. Miller l)ought the interests of Jameson and Conner, and a 
little later Foley sold his interest to J. C. .Maxey. Wiiile these changes 
were taking place, the daily and weekly Times, which was started by 
T. J. .MeDowell & Sons in 1874, was consolitlated with the S()ili,H(l, 
under the name of the I'imrs-lSoitiHel, and conducted about a year hy the 
firm of ilaxey & JI(d)owell. when the latter withdrew and resumed the 
publication of the Times as a separate j)ai)er. The Sentinel was then 
continued by Ewing & Ma^t'.v i'or a short time, when Ihey were succeeded 
by Sanniel F. Winter, who pul)lishe(,l the paper until about 1879. Then 
Louis B. Fulwih'r and Kiehard A. Cole purchased the plant and con- 
ducted the Sentinel until IS.s;). 

C. N. Kenton succeeded Fulwiler & Cole and published the paper 
from April to Xovemher, 188'J, when he sold out to F. 1). & F. A. Haim- 
baugh. Al)out eighteen months later F. D. liaimbaugh sold his interest 
to his partner and T. .1. Finch. The latter 's inteivst was represented 
by R. •!. Conner until his death on July 21, 18!)5. 

In the politii'al campaign of ISIMi the Sentinel, which had always 
been a Democratic paper, refused to support the platform and candi- 
dates of the Democratic party, on account of the "free silver" doctrine 
espoused by the national convention at Chicago, and advocated the elec- 
tion of i'almer and Ducknei'. This (lej)arture from established party 
traditions resulted in the loss of patronage from the regular Democrats 
and soon after that campaign the i)aper i)assed into the hands of W. H. 
Zimmei-man. who incorpoi'atcd a company for its publication. Associated 
with yiv. Zinnnerman was Frank K. ^IcElheny, the present county 
auditor. .Mr. Zimmerman was fatally injured in an automobile accident 
on Xovemher 2, I'JlJi, and since his death the paper has been conducted 
by Mr. McElheny. For several years it has been published as a semi- 

Two attemi)ts were made by the publishers of the Sentinel to establish 
a daily i)aper. The first contiinied from September, 1890, to April, 
185)1, and the second from December, 181)2, to .luly, 189;j. Some years 
before this time (in 1887) Edward Cox started the Daily II( ralil, which 
ran for about three mouths, when it was suspended and the plant was 
removed to Marion, Indiana. 


The Peru Republican, the sec-oud oldest paper iu Miami couuty and 
the oldest, if the suspension of the Sciitiiiil in 1861 be considered, was 
founded by E. P. Loveland, a proiuineut member of the ]\liami eouuty 
bar. The first number apj)eared on Oetober 9, 1856, as the organ of the 
newly organized Republican party. It was not long, however, until 
Mr. Loveland sold out to \V. S. Benham and S. C. Chapin, who published 
the paper until March, 1868, when G. I. Reed and James ^l. Brown became 
the proprietors. After aliout a year Mr. Brown sold his interest to his 
partner, who conducted the paper until May, 1873, when he sold a half 
interest to il. R. Sinks. In JIarch, 1878, W. W. Lockwood purchased the 
interest of Mr. Sinks and the publication firm became Reed & Lockwood. 
^Ir. Reed removed to Kansas City in 1886, but retained his interest in 
the paper until the following year, when he sold the ma.ior part of his 
holdings to his partner. In 1890 ]\Ir. Lockwood bought the remainder 
of Mr. Reed's interest and became sole proprietor. 

One evening in November, 1905, while driving to his home in Ridge- 
view, Mr. Lockwood 's buggy was struck by a cab and he was seriously 
injured. He managed to continue the publication of the Republican, 
however, until January 6, 1906, when he employed Omer Ilolman. for- 
merly connected with the Ftrn Journal, as manager, ilr. Lockwood 's 
death occurred on February 14, 1906, as a result of his injuries, and 
Mr. Holman continued to publish the paper for the Lockwood estate 
until January 1, 1912, when he leased the plant for a period of five 

In connection with the history of the Peru Republican, it is worthy 
of note that the original paper was printed upon the second press ever 
brought to iliami countA-. After the Miami County Sentinel, under ]Mr. 
Graham's editorial management, became the mouthpiece of the 
Democracy, the "Whigs decided to start an organ of their own. Accord- 
ingly, an outfit was purchased and brought to Peru in 1852 and the 
first paper published as a Whig paper was the Free Press, with J. H. 
Smith as editor. The following year E. & E. R. Trask bought the plant 
and established the Wabash Olio. A year later the Republican Argus, 
published by J. H. Shirk & Company, succeeded the 0/w>, and in turn 
was succeeded by the Peru Neus in 1855, published by H. & E. Holder- 
man. The News lived but a short time, when the press and materials 
were purchased by Mr. Loveland for the publication of the Republican. 

The Peru Evening JoiirnaJ was founded as a neutral afternoon daily 
by Crowder & ]\Iiller, in 1884, and was the first successful daily paper 
ever established in Peru. Mr. Jliller soon afterward sold his interest 
to Ezra Roe. Subsequently Riciiard Kilgore l)ought the paper and con- 
ducted it for about a year. On January 1, 1887, Crowder & Brenton 

HISTORY OF MT A:\II county 303 

nought the Journal. The senior member of the firm was one of the origi- 
nal founders of the paper. In January, 1SS)1, \V. A. Woodring pur- 
chased the interest of ^Ir. Breutou and tlie following April Arthur L. 
Bodurtha acquired a half interest, Mr. Crowder at that time retiring, and 
the firm became Woodring & Bodurtha. Under this finn's management 
the Journal became an independent Republican paper and continued 
so until the split in that party in 1912, when it resumed its neutrality 
Early in November, 1913, Mr. Bodurtha sold his interest to J. Ross 
Woodring and in December W. A. Woodring died leaving J. Ross Wood- 
ring as sole manager. The Journal is published every week day in its 
own biiilding at Nos. 19 and 21 West Third street and is one of the 
leading newspapers of the county. 

In 190G Woodring & Bodurtha established the Peru Morning Journal 
for circulation in the country towns and on the rural delivery routes. 
It proved to be a successful venture and the paper now has a daily 
circulation of 1,500 or more. It is published every morning except 

The Miami County Record, the first number of which was issued 
on July 3, 1894, at Peru, was the outgrowth of the Bunker Hill Press. 
In January, 1892, John H. Stephens bought the Bunker Hill paper and 
about two years later removed the plant to Peru, where thp Record was 
started as a Democratic paper. Dr. H. V. Passage was connected with 
the paper for a time in an editorial capacity and when the Sentinel 
declined to support the Democratic national ticket in 1896, the Record 
built up a considerable subscription list. It was merged with the 
Sentinel after that paper was acquired by Mr. Zimmerman's company. 

On June 28, 1894, the first number of the Peru DuUij Chronicle, was 
issued by J. H. ^loore and Charles Winter, two practical printers em- 
ployed on the Journal. Aliout 1880 the same two men had started a 
paper called the Peru Daily Enterprise, but after a variable career of a 
few months it was forced to suspend. The Chronicle, however, has proved 
to be a profitable newspaper venture. Its quarters on East Third street 
are well equipped, it has a good circulation, and in appearance is a neat 
and attractive paper. 'Sir. Moore retired from the firm soon after the 
paper was started and the Chronicle is now issued every afternoon except 
Sunday by Charles H. Winter. 

From the foregoing it will be seen that at the present time the city 
of Peru has five newspapers — three dailies and two weeklies. In addi- 
tion to those mentioned that lived for a time, other newspapers have 
been published in the city at different times, none of which is now in 
existence. When Samuel F. Winter retired from the Sentinel in 1879 he 
established the Valh ij lUmU . .Mr. Winter is one of the veteran 


jouraalists of the Wabash valley and during the political campaign of 
1880 acquired considerable prominence. Soon after that campaign its 
publication was discontinued. 

The Daihj Bulhiin, an independent morning paper, was published 
for some time in 1893 by Brenton & Holman. It was the successor of 
the Comet, a small, unpretentious, non-political weekly, which was started 
by John Diehl and Omer Holman. The Bidktin is said to have been 
a good paper, but the field was not large enough to support a morning 
daily and it gave up the ghost. 

About 1898 or 1899 a paper called the Peru Xcws was started as a 
weekly, but afterward became a daily. During its existence of about 
two years it changed owners a number of times. Among those who 
served as editors of the pai)er were Arthur Kling and Charles Griswold. 
When the supply of natural gas began to decline and the question of 
charging consumers b.y meter for their gas the News espoused the meter 
system, which caused it to lose prestige. Before this time the paper 
had passed into the hands of a man named Ray — a non-resident — and 
a little later its publication was brought to a close. 

Outside of the city of Peru, the first newspaper in the county was 
the Xenia Gazette, which was started by Charles P. Thew in 1868 and 
published by him for about two years. Mr. Thew then sold out to R. K. 
Robinson, who pul)lished the paper for about four years, or until the 
plant was destroyed by fire some time in the year 1871. At the time 
of this disaster the Gazette had a fair circulation and was doing a good 
work for the interests of Xenia and the vicinity. 

The next paper to l)e established at Xenia (now Converse) was the 
Times, which was started by Cleveland J. Reynolds in 1879. About 
eighteen months later the paper was leased by Ward & Prank, who 
conducted it for one year, when Mr. Reynolds resumed control and a 
little later removed the outfit awa.v from Xenia. Just about that time 
the WabeisJi Valley Blade, which had been published at Peru I)y Samuel 
F. Winter, was suspended. J. 0. Frame, of Xenia, induced Mr. Winter 
to remove his printing outfit to that tovm and continue the publication 
of the Times. A partnershij:) was accordingly formed and the firm of 
Frame & Winter issued the paper every week until September 8, 1886, 
when it was finally discontinued. 

In the meantime A. L. Lawshe and Ro.scoe Kimple had formed a 
partnership for the publication of a paper called the Xenia Journal, 
a Republican weekly, the first number of which was issued on December 
12, 1883. The proprietors of this paper were two energetic young men, 
who secured a guaranteed subscription of 400 and a good advertising 
patronage before the first issue of the paper came from the press. At 


the fiiil of one yvnv .Ml'. Lawsln' purchased his partner's interest and soon 
won tlic distinction of beinu: one of the most iilih- and successful news- 
]iaper men in Miami county. In IS'JG he was a deh'gate to the Republican 
national convention and not loni; after President McKinley's inaug- 
uration the next year hr appointed .Mr. Lawshe to an important position 
in the I'nited States treasury (le|)arlment. Snlise(|uently he held a posi- 
tion of great trust and responsibility as auditor of the Philippine 
Islands. When tlie name of the town was changed to Converse the paper 
became the Coitvi isi Ji)iinntl. whieli is now issued every Friday by 
Charles B. & L. IT. Ryder. 

About ISTl' tlie Villarir News was started at Bunker Hill by Jasper 
II. Keyes, who conducted it for about a year, when the plant was turned 
over to a stock conii)any. In 1874 E. M. Howard, one of the stockhold- 
ers, assumetl the manafremenl, enlarged the paper to an eight page sheet 
and changed the name to the Hunker Hill News. A little later John P. 
Busby l)0ught the otlice and changed the name to the Independent Press, 
with George T. :Metzgei' as (nlitor. During the next few years the paper 
changed owners several times, but in 1880 it came into the hands of 
Oliver A. and Josei)h Larimer, who adopted the name of the Bunker 
Hill Press. The following decade witnessed a number of changes in 
the ownership and management, the editors being successively Charles 
Jerrel, John W. O'llara, C. W. Jones, J. E. Smith and Thomas J. 
O'Hara. On January 20, 1890, the printing office was destroyed by fire, 
liut it was immediately rebuilt by C. W. Jones, who was at that time 
tlie proprietor, only a few issues being missed. In January, 1892, John 
II. Stephens leased the plant and soon afterward purchased it outright. 
In August, 1893, .Mr. Stepliens began the publication of an agricultural 
pai)er called .SVoi/,- and Fartn in connection with the Press, which was 
continued until llie removal ef the office to Peru in June, 1894. 

About two nmnlhs after .Mr. Stephens took the outfit to Peru, 1). U. 
S|)angler issued a small four-|)age paper called Tlie Sword at Bunker 
Hill. This i)ublieation survived for about three montlis, when C. A. 
Kne])per purchased the press and type and on February 28, 1895, issued 
the first nundier of the new Hunkir Uill Press. W. O. Oden soon after- 
ward liecame as.soeiated with .Mr. Knepper and the forged rapidly 
to the front as one of the best newspapers in the county outside of the 
county seat. Since that time the paper has changed hands several 
times. It is now issued every Thursday by Fred S. Freeman, editor and 

On ;\Iay Hi, ISS.'), the lirsl nundjer of the .Macy Monitor was issued 
by .M. Lew Enyart. .\bout three years later Mr. Enyart leased a half 
interest to A. J. Wertz, but tliis arrangement lasted but a short time, 

Vol I— SO 


when Mr. Wertz withdrew. In 1892 the paper was sold to Benjamin G. 
AVhitehead, who became financially embarrassed and made an assignment 
for the benefit of his creditors. Dr. M. M. Boggs then published the 
Monitor for about four months, when the plant and good will were sold 
to the original founder, M. L. Enyart, who continued in control for 
some time. The Monitar is now published every Thursday by W. H. 

The Denver Tribinie was founded in 1897 and is still published every 
Thursday by L. H. & Mrs. Delia Lacy Dice. It is a neat, newsy paper 
well edited and has a good circulation through the northern part of 
the county. 

The Ainboij Inelependent, the youngest newspaper in Miami county, 
began its career in 1902. As its name indicates, it is an independent 
weekly paper and is published every Friday by J. F. Jlelton & Son. 

In connection with the history of journalism and literature in Miami 
county, it is apropos to observe that in 1902 George Browning Lock- 
wood, a son of the late W. W. Lockwood, for many years editor of the 
Peru Kcpuhlicaii, published a book entitled "The New Harmony Com- 
munities," of which he was the author, and which has been accepted as 
a classic on the subject of socialistic communities. Shortly after it 
appeared it was adopted as one of the books of the Indiana Teachers' 
Reading Circle and the work has received a large circulation, both in 
this country and Europe. 

Public Libraries 

In 1837 the "Peru Lyceum" was organized and in connection with 
it a library was established. Among those who belonged to this society 
during the ten years or more of its existence, the old records show the 
names of N. 0. Ross, John A. Graham, L. D. Adkinson, J. B. Fulwiler 
and J. S. Fenimore. It is said that no subject was too weighty for the 
Lyceum to discuss, and that its library consisted of a good selection of 
standard books. After the society disbanded the books became scattered, 
but in 1881 a few of the good ones and a large number of public docu- 
ments were collected and placed in the high school at Peru, where they 
remained for several years, some of them becoming so badly worn that 
they were useless and those that were worth preserving were turned over 
to the Peru public library. 

The records of the town council for 1856 contain mention of a "cor- 
poration library," but no one can be found who knows anything of such 
an institution. In that year the Miami County Workingmen's Institute 
was organized in accordance with the will of a -Mr. McClure, of New 



Harmony, Iiuliaiiji, whicli provided tliat wlu'iicver a society of persons, 
"who labor with their hands and cai'ii tlieir living by the sweat of their 
brow," should organize and contribute 100 volumes as the nucleus 
of a library, such society should be entitled to receive $500 from his 


estate. The institute and the town council employed Ira Myers to col- 
lect books for the library and he succeeded in collecting 140 volumes, 
when tile organization received $500 worth of books from the McClure 
estate. The instil nte was disbanded in March, 1860, the libraiy then 


passing into the liands oi' H. (J. Fetter, who some years later turned it 
over to Dr. W. 11. Gilbert, after which the books became scattered. 
John W. Shields, the veteran music dealer of Peru and who is still living, 
was a member of the institute and tells some amusing anecdotes of how 
professional men, desiring to share in the benefits of the library, would 
attempt to show that they were workingmen and ''earned their living 
by the sweat of their brow." 

The present public library at Peru was organized under the act 
of the Indiana legislature, approved by Governor Matthews on March 
11, lSi)5, which provided that whenever a library was organized by the 
people and established by private donations, under certain conditions, 
the local authorities might levy and collect a tax of no more than six 
cents upon each !{>100 worth of taxable property, etc. Shortly after 
the passage of that act the school board of the city of Peru took the 
necessary preliminary steps for the establishment of a public library in 
accordance with its provisions. A few books were collected, some of 
which were donated and some acquired by purchase, and these were 
placed in the high school building at the corner of Sixth and Broadwa.v 
streets, with ^liss Martha G. Shirk as librarian. 

It soon became evident that the high school building was inadequate 
to the demands of both school and libraiy and early in 1901 Dr. L. 0. 
IMalsbury, of the school board, and Rev. Harry Nyce, pastor of the Pres- 
byterian church, appealed to Andrew Carnegie for a donation, with which 
to erect a suitable building. D. H. Strouse had previously written to 
Mr. Carnegie on the subject. Mr. Carnegie replied under date of March 
8, 1901, offering to give $25,000 provided the city would obligate itself 
to raise ten per cent of that amount annually for the library's support. 
The offer was accepted and plans for the building were approved in 
the following May by ilr. Carnegie. 

An effort was made to secure the location of the building on the city 
lot at the northw-est corner of ]Main and Miami streets, but this failing 
the lot at the northeast corner of Main and Huntington streets was 
secured. About this time a controversy arose between the city council 
and the school board as to which body should control the funds donated 
by Mv. Carnegie and assume the responsibility for the erection of the 
building. A compromise was finally effected by the appointment on 
August 16, 1901, of a library board, part of the members of which 
belonged to the council and the others to the school board. This 
board organized on August li2nd by the election of William Odum, 
president ; I. W. Kurtz, secretary ; and Dr. H. P. McDowell, treasurer. 
Bids were advertised for on September 12, 1901, and about this time, 
Mr. Carnegie made an additional donation of $2,000 to the library fund. 


The corner-stoiu' of tin- Imildiiio: was laid on Wednesday, February 
26, 1902. On the Huntinoton street side of the stone is the inscrip- 
tion : "1902. Crapsey & Lamm, architects; J. B. Goodall, contractor," 
and the inscription on the Main street side reads: "Library Building 
Board— W. A. Odum. William A. Canther, I. W. Kurtz, H. P. McDow- 
ell, M. A. Reilly, C. Smith, L. 0. Malsbury." The building was com- 
pleted before the close of the year and was opened to the public with 
Miss ^lai'tha G. Shirk as librarian and ^liss Gertrude H. Thie])aud as 
assistant. Miss Shirk resigned a little later and Miss Thiebaud was 
promoted to the position of librarian, which she still occupies. At the 
close of the year 1913 there were about ] 0,000 volumes in the library, 
exclusive of a large number of pamphlets and newspaper files. The city 
has levied a tax each year, in accordance with the law, for the support 
of the library and with the fund thus provided new books are being 
constantly added. On the second floor on the library building is an 
a.ssembly hall, in wiijcli lectures and entertainments are given in con- 
nection with work in the library and school board. 

Although the Peru library is the only free public library in iMiami 
county, the trustees of the various townships have been somewhat liberal 
in the establishment of libraries in connection with the public schools, 
the number of volumes in the school lil)raries at the close of year 1913 
have been approximately 15,000. 



Purpose of the Courts — Eighth Judiclvl, District — First Courts 
IN IVLlvmi County — Ch-uiacter of the Early Judges — The Court- 
house Fire of 1843 — Wabash Bridge Case — Personal Mention 
OF Judges — Seal of the Circuit Court — Change in Courts by the 
Constitution of 1852 — Probate Court^Court of Common Pleas 
— Court op Conciliation — List op Judges and Prosecuting 
Attorneys — The Bar — Sketches op Old Time Lawyers — Bxr 
Association — Attorneys in 1914 — A Few Cases. 

Robert Burns, in his cantata of the "Jolly Beggars." in which is 
represented a number of vagabond characters gathered at the house of 
"Poosie Nancy," makes one of the assembled guests sing a song with 
the following refrain, in which the company joins with great glee: 

" A fig for those by law protected, 
Liberty 's a glorious feast ; 
Courts for cowards were erected. 
Churches built to please the priest." 

No doubt there are individuals in the present day who entertain 
opinions similar to those expressed by Burns' "Jolly Beggars," but the 
fact remains that the histoiy of civilization shows the enactment of just 
laws, their interpretation by an intelligent and unbiased judiciary, and 
their enforcement by a competent and courageous executive to be the 
bulwarks of human rights. Courts were not erected for cowards, but 
for the protection of life, liberty and property of all classes of citizens 
alike. It has been said that "the measure of a people's civilization can 
always be determined by the condition of its judiciary." Much has been 
said and written of the venality 6f courts and the trickery of lawyers. 
and unfortunately some of the charges have been true. But should all 
the courts and all the attonieys of a country be condemned because 
there have been a few cases of corrupt judges, or an occasional shyster 
or pettifogger in the legal fraternity? Who would think of denouncing 
the entire medical prof ession_ because of its quacks and empirics, or the 



public press of the uation because of a few instances of so-called "yellow" 
journalism ? Among the members of the bench and bar are found many 
of the most distinguished and patriotic men in the country's history. 
In the galaxy of great Americans what names shine with greater efful- 
gence than those of Patrick Henry, John Marshall, Thomas Jetferson, 
James ^lonroe, Daniel Webster, Henry Claj', Abraham Lincoln and 
Salmon P. Chase? 

In the very dawn of human progress the idea that there must be 
some rule for the protection of individual rights and some tribunal for 
the enforcement of that rule found a lodgment in the minds of the 
people. From that humble beginning can be traced, step by step, the 
development of civil government, the expansion of the courts and the 
greater reign of law. The old Hindoo laws of the Punjab, the Mosaic 
law, the Julian code of ancient Rome, each a slight advance over its 
predecessor in granting greater liberties to the people, paved the way 
for the ilagna Charta of Great Britain and the American Republic. 

The transactions of the courts in any community make an important 
chapter in its histoi-y. Owing to the destruction of the early records 
of Miami county, the history of the first courts is much obscured. There 
is, in fact, a dilference of statement as to when the tirst session of th(' 
circuit court was held, some authorities placing it in August and others 
in September, 1834. When the county was organized in January of 
that year it was attached to the Eighth judicial district, which was com- 
posed of the counties of Cass, Miami, Wabash, Huntington, Allen, 
Lagrange, Elkhart, St. Joseph and Laporte. At that time the circuit 
court consisted of a president judge, elected by the legislature, and two 
associate judges in each county, elected by the people of that county. 
Gustavus Everts, of Laporte county, was the president judge of the 
first circuit court ever held in Miami county and th(> associate judges 
were Stephen S. Shanks and. Jacob Wilkinson. 

Judge Everts was a man of fine address and a lawyer of consider- 
able tact, altliough not profoundly learned in the law. Judge Biddle, 
who knew him well, says he was "extremely a.stute in the management 
of witnesses," and that "In eases that moved emotion, or touched 
passion, or appealed to the feelings which stir our common nature, 
he was very powerful — far more successful than when he attempti-d 
to convince the understanding." 

The first session of the circuit court was held in Miamisport. Sam- 
uel C. Sample was the prosecuting attorne.y; Benjamin H. Scott, 
clerk; Jacob Linzee, sheriff, and James Petty, court bailiff. There is 
a difference of opinion a.s to both the time and place of holding the 
second session of the court. Graham says it was convened in March, 


1835, at Tarkington's tavern, at the northeast eorner of Main and 
iliami streets, and Stephens (p. 157) says it was held in February, 
1835, "at the home of Dr. James T. Liston, who kept a tavern on Sec- 
ond street, just back of where the National hotel now stands." At 
any rate it was held iu the town of Peru, instead of IMianiisport. by 
the same judge and court officers as the fii'st session. 

In September, 1835, the third term of the circuit coui-t was hrhl 
at the tavern of Hugh A. B. Peoples — a two-story log house on East 
Second street. Concerning this session Graham says: "The room in 
which the term of court last named was held was not over eighteen feet 
square. The judge, prosecutor, clerk and attorneys sat around a table 
near the north wall, and parties litigant and spectators stood wherever 
they found convenient places in the room and about the door outside. 
The indictments were generally for small infractions of the law, such 
as betting on shooting matches, selling whisky without license, and 
indulging in the innocent amusement of euchre or old sledge at twenty- 
five cents a corner." 

Judge Everts was succeeded by Samuel C. Sample, who had previ 
ously held the olifice of prosecuting attorney. Judge Sample has been 
described as a man of no extraordinary ability, but a plain, practical 
man guided as much by the dictates of common sense as by the tech- 
nicalities of the law. "At the bar and as president judge of the circuit 
courts, he stood high among the most efficient and able practition- 
ers, and was one of the purest judges that has graced the bench." He 
held but one term of court in Miami county, and that was in the fall 
of 1836. After that he represented the district in congress, where he 
ac((uired a reputation for being an active, conscientious worker in 
behalf of his constituents. 

By the act of February 4. 1836, the counties of Porter, Marshall, 
Fulton, Kosciusko, Adams and Noble were added to the Eighth judicial 
district. As thus increased, the district included the whole north- 
eastern part of the state and was an unusually large judicial circuit, 
even for that day. After Judge Sample retired from the bench he was 
succeeded by Charles W. Ewing, who served as judge until the sum- 
mer of 1839. Judge Ewing was a brilliant orator, a lawyer of superior 
ability and one who stood high in the profession wherever he was known. 
James E. Fulwiler used to say that he was one of the most polished 
gentlemen of his day. He never had studied grammar, yet his lan- 
guage was pure and his diction almost perfect — a qualification that 
came to him through his custom of reading only the best authors. The 
last session of the Miami circuit court held by Judge Ewing was in the 
month of March, 1839. Soon after that he became dissipated in his 


lial)its and dicil hy liis own liand on January 9, 1843, while still in the 
meridian of life. 

Henry Chase, of Lopansport, was appointed judge of the Eighth 
district by Governor AVallaee on August 20, 1839, to fill the vacancy 
caused by the resignation of Judge Ewing. He has been described as 
"a close and ready pleader, seldom or never asking for time to pre- 
pare Ills papers; had a clear, logical mind and great force of character. 
As a .judge he was dignified, self-reliant and unequivocal, mak- 
ing no jnistjikes in tlie enunciation of his decisions: his style brief yet 
exhaustive." He served on the liench but a few months, as the legis- 
lature which convened in December, 1839, elected John W. Wright 
president .iudge of the Eighth circuit and also added Carroll county 
to the ilistrict. 

Judge Wright served the full term of seven years. While he wa.s 
on the bench the iliami county court-house wa.s t)uilt, but it had hardly 
been completed and accepted by the county commissioners when it was 
destroyed by fire on ]\lareh 16, 1843. To relieve the citizens of the 
county from the inconvenience resulting from the destruction of the 
records, the legislature of 1843-44 passed the following act: 

"An Act Kor the Benefit of Persons Wlio Are Likely to Sutfer liy 
the Destruction of the Records of Miami County by Fire. 

"Whereas, On the .... day of , 1843, the court-house in 

the County of i\Iiami was burned and all the records of the probate 
and circuit courts and the recorder's office were destroyed; and 

"Whereas, IMaiiy persons are affected by the destruction aforesaid: 
"Section J. Br it Enartnl bif tlif General Assonlilij of the Stah of 
Indiana, That for perpetuating the testimony of, or relating to any 
judgments, orders, decrees, oi- other pi-oceedings of the probate or 
circuit courts of the County of ]\liaTni, had previous to the destruc- 
tion of the records thereof, and for the purpose of perpetuating testi- 
mony concerning, of, or relating to, any patents, deeds, mortgages, 
bills of sale, wills, inventories, powers of attorney, or other instru- 
ments of writing of record in tlie books of the recorder of said county 
and destroyed as aforesaid. M. W. Seely, of said county, is hereby 
appointed a commissioner to receive evidence of and concerning any 
such judgments, orders, decrees, or other proceedings of said probate 
and circuit courts, and in relation to any patent, deed, will, bill of sale, 
mortgage, powei- of attoi'iiey, inventory, oi' other instrument in writ- 
ing by any person who may wish to have such testimony perpetuated." 

It appears that Mr. Seely was only partially successful in restoring 

the records. es])ecially the transactions of the c(ini-1s previous to tiie 


fire. The autheiitie history of the Miami circuit court therefore begins 
with the September term in 1843. It was held in the Presbyterian 
church, beginning on Monday, September 11, 1843, with John W. 
AYright as president judge; Albert Cole and George S. Fenimore, asso- 
ciate judges. Benjamin H. Scott was clerk; John A. Graham, sheriff; 
and Spier S. Tipton, prosecuting attorney. Stephens' History of 
Miami County (p. 160) says: 

"The juries for tliis term of court were drawn on June 7, 1843. 
The grand jury was composed of the following named pereons: Jacob 
Flora, Benjamin. I. Cady, Enos Baldwin, William Jones, Thomas 
Black, James S. Sayers, Eli Cook, Jonathan Bishop, Willis Bunch, 
Nathan Raines, Matthew Murden, Reuben C. Harris, Samuel Drake, 
Stephen Bradley, Samuel Fisher, Josephus Austin, Edward H. Bruce, 
William Donaldson. 

"The petit jury was as follows: Samuel Guyer, Eli Flora, Wash- 
ington Abbott, Henry Bish, James Furs, James Beard, Robert James, 
Charles Cole, William Bish, R. F. Donaldson, George Wilson, Chand- 
ler C. ]\Ioore, Benjamin Griffith, Isaac Deeter, Samuel Adamsou, Wil- 
liam Bane, Jacob Peer, Robert Parks, Elias Bills, Warren A. Sabring, 
Joseph Cox, Benjamin Graft, Nathaniel Leonard and John Conner." 

It will be noticed that in the above lists are given the names of 
eighteen persons as grand jurors and twenty-four as petit jurors. As 
a jury could consist of oidy twelve men, the lists include the names of 
those selected for jury service and from those mentioned twelve were 
drawn for actual duly as the regular panels of the grand and petit 

The most important ease to come before this session of the court 
was that of the Peru Bridge Company vs. Richard L. Britton, et al. 
It was the outgrowth of a movement across the Wabash river at the 
foot of Broadway and came before the court in the form of a petition 
for assessment of damages. The petition was presented by the heirs 
of Francis Godfroy through their attorney, and asked "That a jury 
of twelve fit persons meet on the fourth Monday in October, 1843, to 
view the lands proposed for the abutments, toll house and causeways, 
and to locate and circumscribe by metes and bounds the quantity of 
grounds necessary for the said abutments, toll house and causeways, 
having due regards thei-ein to- the interests of both parties and to 
appraise the same according to its true value, to examine the lands 
above and beloM-, the property of others, which may probably over- 
flow, and say what damage it will be to the several proprietors, and 


wlictluT tlif inaiisioii house of such proprictoi's, or tlie offices Miui gar- 
dens thereunto iiniiicdiately hehjiigiiig, will lie overflowed, to inquire 
whether in what degree fish of i)assage and ordinary navigation will 
be obstructed, whether by any or what means such obstruction may l)e 
prevented, and whether in their opinion the health ol' the neighhoi-hood 
will be annoyed liy the stagnation of the wati-rs." 

A jury, or eommi.ssion. was accortlingly appointi-d hy the court to 
view the site of the proposed bridge and the ad.joining property and 
report at the next tei-ni of court. The i-eport of the ,iury was presented 
to the court at the I\Iarcli term in 1844 and set forth: "That it will 
be of no damage to the mansion houses of none of the several proprie- 
tors along the river, nor the offices or gardens thereunto immediately 
belonging, will be overflowed by the erection of said liridge, nor the 
abutiiieiits. toll house nor causeways thereof: and it a|ipearing further 
to the satisfaction of the jury that ordinary navigation or fish of pass- 
age will not thereby be obstructed, and that the health of the neigh- 
borhood will not be annoyed by the stagnation of water occasioned 
by the construction of said bridge, abutments, toll house and causeways," 

Upon the presentation of this re]>ort the court ordered that the 
bridge be i-onstructed. After a lapse of seventy years, during which 
time every stream in Indiana has been bridged at the crossing of the 
principle highwa.ys, it is interesting to note the opposition to the con- 
struction of the first bridge across the Waliash river at Peru. John 
Bush, who is credited with having been the first resident lawyer of 
Miami county, was one of the leaders of that opposition. Bush had 
paid the county connnissioners a license fee for the privilege of operat- 
ing a ferry across the W;diash. and claimed that his license gave him a 
vested" right, which would be seriously interfered with by the building 
of the liridge. Of course, he was actuated by a selfish motive, but this 
did not ])revent him from instituting proceedings to prevent the erec- 
tion of the liridge. In this action he was sustained by the proprii^tors 
of the town, strange as it may seem, and after the circuit coui't decide(l 
in favor of the bridge Bush appealed to the supremi* court of Indiana, 
whiili sustained the decision of the lower court. The litigation over 
this bridge was one of the most jirotracted cases in the early annals of 
the circuit court. 

At this term (March, 1844,) John A. Graham. William World. .lere- 
miah Shall'ei'. Daniel Gloucester and Jacob St roup wei-e arraignetl for 
disobeying the orders of the court and each was fined one dollai' for con- 
tempt. Several state cases were disposed of, among them two for 
betting, two for perjury, one foi- violation of the estray law, a few for 


trespass, and a slaudei- case was also heard and decided. Isaac and 
Moses Falk, from Germany, and James Maloney, a subject of Great 
Britain, declared their intention to Ijecame citizens of the United States 
and were given their naturalization papers, the first issued in Miami 

lu March, 1847, Horace P. Riddle succeeded Judge AVriglit upon 
the bench. Judge Biddle was of a literary turn of mind and was the 
author of a number of books, including a collection of poems. He is 
described by General John Coburn, in his History of the Indiana 
Supreme Court, as "a small, wiry, active, pale-faced, nervous man, 
with dark eyes and lofty forehead, scholarly appearance and retir- 
ing habits, but a most genial companion to his friends. A keen and 
active practitioner, putting his points with great clearness and force ; 
he was a formidable advocate and became a famous lawyer, a circuit 
and supreme judge. His poems, like his briefs and opinions, are 
marked with the taste, point and precision of the student. He could 
speak with great force on the stump, before a jurj' or to the court."' 

Judge Biddle served until 1852, when he resigned and the same year 
was elected a senatorial delegate to the state constitutional conven- 
tion, of which he was one of the most active and distinguished mem- 
bers. Upon his resignation Robert H. Milroy, of Carroll county, was 
appointed to fill the vacancy. Judge Milroy was "a lawyer of consid- 
erable ability, wide experience and high integrity and carried these 
qualities with him in the discharge of the duties pertaining to his more 
responsible position, leaving no stain upon the judicial ermine." He 
is better known in history, however, as a soldier. In early life he 
attended a military school at Norwich, Vermont, and at the beginning 
of the Mexican war raised a company, of which he was made captain, 
and served until the end of the conflict. At the outbreak of the Civil 
war in 1861, he organized several companies for the three months' 
service and entered the army as colonel of the Ninth Indiana Infantry. 
His skill as a military man led to his promotion to brigadier, and fin- 
ally to major-general. While on the bench he held but one term of 
court in Miami county, John U. Pettit, of Wabash county, having been 
elected the first judge of the circuit under the new constitution. 

Judge Pettit had previously served in the Indiana legislature and 
as United States consul at Rio Janeiro, Brazil. He was a man of fine 
accomplishments, master of the English language, well informed on a 
nuiltitude of subjects and a lawyer of more than ordinary ability and 
resources. He remained on the bench but a short time, resigning to 
enter congress in the fall of 1853. He served four consecutive terms 
in congress, having been three times elected as a Democrat and once as 


a Repuliliraii. Early in tlic Civil war he was coininissioned colonel, 
but soon retired from the army on account of his health. 

The first term of the circuit court in Miami county under the pres- 
ent state constitution was convened on March 14. 1853, with Judge 
I'ettit on the bench; John Conncll, prosccntiiij"; attorney; James H. 
Fulwiler, clerk, and Jonas Hoover, sheriff. Very little business of 
importance came before the court at this session, but at the September 
term following the seal of the circuit court of Miami county was adopted, 
the order for which was as follows: 

"I, John Upfold Pettit, Judge of the Miami Circuit Court, within 
and for said county and state, do hereby devise and adopt the follow- 
ing as the seal of said court, to wit : To be of metal, circular in its 
disk upon the face, of the exact dimensions of the impression thereof 
at the lower left hand corner of this page and so engraved ujxju its 
face as to make the following impression in relief, viz. : A dotted circle 
around and at its margin, just within, the words 'Circuit Court Miami 
County Indiana.' the word Indiana separated from tlie other words 
at both ends In- four leaved loses, said words in Roman capital letter 
and in direction parallel with the exterior and interior dotted circles. 
Just within said words a second dotted circle in the same direction and 
in the open space within said circle a right hand holding a pen in the 
position of writing, the fingers directed to the left, a true impression 
of which said seal, I certifj* the foregoing impression to be and leaving 
so devised the same, I hereby declare the above and foregoing to be a 
true description thereof and to be henceforth the seal of the Jliami 
Circuit Court. 

"Done in open session of this said cuni't at Peru, in said count.v, 
this i:5th day of September. A. D. 18511 

" John Upfold Pettit." 

When Judge Pettit left the bench to enter Congress. (Jovernor 
Wright ajtpointed John Browulee, of Grant county, which had in the 
meantime been added to the district, to the vaeane.v. Judge Browulee 
held but one term of court in Miami county during his appointment, 
and timt was in March, 1854, John IM. Wallace, also of Grant county, 
being elected in the fall of that .year to fill out the unexpired term of 
Judge i'ettit. He was a man of fine address, affable manners, a fairly 
good lawyer and a conscientious, impartial jurist. He first presided 
at the Miami circuit court in March, 1855, at which time Isaiah M. 
Harlan was prosecuting attorney and Hiram Moore was sheriff. At 
the September term following John Wertz was sheriff and Alexander 


Blake had succeeded James 13. Fulwiler as clerk. Judge AVallaee cou- 
tinued on the bench until 1860, his last term in Jliami county having 
been held in October of that year, and during the greater part of that 
term Judge Brownlee presided by appointment. W. S. Beuham was 
then prosecuting attoi-ney ; Alexander Blake, clerk : and O. H. P. Macy, 

One of the important criminal cases in the early history of 
the jMiami circuit court came up for trial during the administration 
of Judge Wallace. That was the case of the State of Indiana vs. Abner 
Dillon, for murder, which was tried at the Llarch term in 1857. The 
indictment charged Dillon with having killed his wife by beating her 
with a shovel. The testimony showed him to have been guilty of unus- 
ual cruelty to her on numerous occasions and the jury found a verdict 
of guilty of murder in the first degree. He was sentenced to the peni- 
tentiary for life, but appealed to the supreme court, where the action 
of the circuit court was sustained, the supreme court declaring that the 
jurj' had shown Dillon all the leniency to which he was entitled. 

In the fall of 1860, Horace P. Biddle was elected judge of the 
Eleventh district, which was then composed of the counties of Car- 
roll, Cass, Miami, Grant, Wabash and Huntington. He assumed his 
duties upon the bench in April, 1861, and continued upon the bench 
until 1872, when he was succeeded by John U. Pettit, who served the 
full term of six years. 

Judge Pettit was succeeded by LJ^nan Walker, who was the first 
resident of ]\Iiarai county to occupy the position of circuit judge. Judge 
Walker was born at Peacham, Vermont, January 26, 1837. Shortly 
after his birth his parents removed to Thetford, Vermont, where he 
received his earlj' educational training in the public schools and the 
Thetford Academy. In 1854 he entered Dartmouth College and was 
a student there for two years, when he changed to Middlebury College 
and was there graduated with the class of 1856. He then taught school 
for two years, at the end of which time he began the study of law with 
Cruss & Topliff at Manchester. New Hampshire. Early in the year 
1861 he came to Peru and the following fall took charge of the public 
schools, establishing the first graded school in the city. About a year 
later he formed a partnership with Harvey J. Shirk for the practice 
of law. After two years he went to Cincinnati, Ohio, and practiced 
there until after the war, when he returned to Peru. In 1878 he was 
elected judge of the Twentj^-seventh judicial circuit and assumed the 
duties of the office the following year. Judge Walker was above the 
average man in height and physique, a fluent speaker and had a great 
influence upon a jury. After serving one term upon the bench he 


coiitiinu'd ill the practice of his professinn a1 1'itu unlil his death, 
whieli oceun-ed on ]Man-h 5, 18i)4. The meiuhers of tlie l)ar in the 
counties of Miami, Grant, AVabash, Fulton and Huntington all adopted 
resolutions of sympathy anil respect upon the occasion of his death, 
which resolutions were entered upon the i-ecords of the court. 

At tile fail election in 1884 J. D. Connor, of Wabash county, was 
elected circuit juilge, the district being- then composed of the counties 
of "Wabash and I\Iiami, under the provisions of an act passed by the 
legislature of 1873. and was known as tiie Twenty -seventh judicial cir- 
cuit. Judge Connor wa.s an able lawyer and made a good judge, but 
he was not pei-mitted to serve out iiis term, so far as Miami county was 
concerned. The legislature of 1889 redistricted the state for judicial 
purposes, Miami county being made a circuit by itself, and as Judge 
Connor's home was in Wabash county the governor appointed James 
M. Brown judge of the newly established Miami circuit court. 

Judge Brown was born in Union county, Indiana, Octolier IG, 1826. 
He was reai-ed on a farm and received his elementary education in the 
common schools, after which he attended the Beech Grove Academy. 
During the ne.\t few years he taught school and studied law as oppor- 
tunity offered, finally entering the office of Nelson Troisier, at Con- 
nersville, where he completed his studies and was admitted to the bar 
in 1854. In the fall of 1855 he removed to Peru, where he formed a 
partnership with Orris Blake. This association was dissolved after 
a few years and from 1859 to 1862 he was in partnership with James N. 
Tyner. Judge Brown served four terms as maj'or of Peru before the 
city government was established, was city engineer for a time, a mem- 
ber of the school board, two years in the city council, and was associate 
editor of the Peru Republican for about three years. He was an able 
lawyer and made a good judge. His death occurred a few years after 
he retired from the Iieneh. 

In November, 1890, Jabez T. Cox was elected to succeed Judge 
Brown. He was born in Clinton eount.v, Indiana, in 1840, was edu- 
cated at the Westfield Academy, read law with N. R. Overman, of 
Tipton, and was admitted to the bar in Tipton county. After prac- 
ticing for about two years he liecame editor of the Frankfort Crescent 
and conducted that paper for about two years, when he returned to 
Tipton and resumed his profession in partnership with hi.s old i)re- 
ceptor. In 1875 he removed to Kansas, where he was nominated for 
attorney-general by the Democratic state convention in 1878, but was 
defeated, although he ran more than three thousand votes ahead of his 
ticket. He returned to Indiana in 1883 and located at Peru; was 
elected to the legislature in 1886 and circuit judge in 1890, as already 


stated ; was reelected judge in lyUti and served two full terms. He is 
still engaged in practice in Peru as the senior member of the law tirm 
of Cox & Andrews. 

In 1902 Joseph X. Tillett was elected the successor of Judge Cox. 
He is a native of Jliami county and a member of one of its best known 
families. He was admitted to the bar in September, 1890. Before being 
elected to the bench he had served as pi-osecuting attorney. His admin- 
istration during his first term was evidently satisfactory to the people 
of the county, as he was reelected in 1908 for a second term of six 

Such in brief is the history of the circuit court in Miami county 
and the cliaracter of the men who have presided over its transactions. 
The courts of the state underwent a rather radical change liy the 
adoption of the new constitution in 1852, when the oiSce of associate 
judge was abolished. As a matter of fact, this office was more for 
show than for actual utility. They were residents of the county and 
most frequently had a limited knowledge of the law, hence their deci- 
sions were nearly always in harmony with those of the president judge. 
John A. Gi-aham, in his History of Miami County, comments upon the 
associate judges, in a somewhat sarcastic vein, as follows: 

"One almost regrets the absence from the bench of the associates. 
It is true they were not distinguished, in a general way, for their pro- 
fundity in legal lore, but they gave to the tribunal, especially when in 
consultation, a look of sapient dignity, and to judicial rulings the 
moral force of conclusions reached by three persons without division 
of opinion. Whether the associates sacrificed their own convictions of 
law^ in concurring so uniformly with the president, as they were in the 
habit of doing, or whether their concurrence was inevitable from an 
independent understanding of the law, is one of those mysterious ques- 
tions of fact about which it might be unjust to express an opinion. It 
was no uncommon thing, however, for the irreverent first settler to speak 
of them as ciphers, and of supplying their places by wooden men. 

Another change that came to the courts under the new constitu- 
tion was the simplifying of the code of practice and the elimination 
of many of the old common law methods, wath their long and tedious 
forms. At first, some of the older lawyers were inclined to resent the 
introduction of the new code. They had studied the conunon law 
methods, were thoroughly imbued with their principles, were reluctant 
to abandon them for what they regarded an experiment. So pro- 
nounced was this opposition that some of the old timers gave up their 
practice altogether, rather than to adapt themselves to the new-fangled 
notions. But as time went on the justice of the new system grew in 


{)opularity and those of the older attorneys wlio continued in prac- 
tice admitted that there was ""sonie improvement at least over the old 
way. ' ' 

The Probate Court 

In 1831 the legislature passed an act providing for the establish- 
ment of a probate court in each county of the state. This court had 
jurisdiction in nothing but probate matters. Uuder the provisious of 
the law the probate judge was elected on the Hrst Monday in August 
and w-as to receive a salary of three dollars per day while his court 
was iu session. In the absence of the regular probate judge the asso- 
ciate judges of the circuit court were judges ex-officio of the probate 
court. The probate judge could practice law in all the courts of the 
state except his own and the clerk of the circuit court was also clerk of 
the pi-obate court. Another provision of the law was that the qualifica- 
tions of a candidate for probate judge had to be certified to by either 
a judge of the supreme or circuit court. 

This law was passed three years before the organization of Miami 
county. A probate court was established in the county soon after its 
organization, but the early records of its acts were destroyed by the 
courthouse fire in 1848, and the names of the judges prior to that 
time have been lost. Jonathan R. Smith was probate judge in May, 
1843 — the first session of the court of which there is any authentic 
account — and he continued in ofifiee until the fall of 1848, when he was 
succeeded by Reuben C. Harrison. Judge Harrison served as probate 
judge until the office was abolished by the constitution of 1852 and its 
business transferred to the 

Court op Common Pleas 

The first common pleas courts in Indiana were established in 1848, 
in the counties of Jefferson, Marion and Tippecanoe. Upon the adop- 
tion of the new constitution in 1852 eom.mon pleas courts were estab- 
lished in every county of the state and were given exclusive jurisdic- 
tion of probate matters. They likewise had concurrent jurisdiction 
with the circuit court in all actions except those for slander, libel, 
breach of marriage contract, on official bonds of public officers, where 
title to real estate was involved, or where the sum in controversy did 
not exceed .$1,000. In criminal cases the court had jurisdiction of all 
offenses less than felony, except those over which justices of the peace 
had exclusive jurisdiction, and under certain prescribed restrictions 
the common pleas court might hear and decide cases of felony. It also 

Vol. 1—21 


had concurreut jurisdiction with justices of the peace where the amount 
involved in dispute exceeded fifty dollars. 

Judges of the common pleas courts received salaries ranging from 
$300 to $800 per annum. They could practice law in all the courts of 
the state except their own. When the common pleas court was first 
established appeals could be taken from it to the circuit court, but 
this privilege was afterward abolished, though appeals could he taken 
to the supreme court of the state. The clerk and sheriff of the county 
performed their respective duties for the court of connnon pleas the 
same as for the circuit court. From time to time the jurisdiction of 
the court was extended and by the act of June 11, 1852, the judge was 
made e.r-officio judge of the "court of conciliation." This court had 
jurisdiction in actions for libel, slander, malicious prosecution, false 
imprisonment and assault and batterj-, but its power extended only 
to effecting a reconciliation or compromise between the litigants. In 
such cases no attorney was permitted to appear for his client, but the 
plaintiff and defendant were given a private hearing by tlie court. 
After each had stated his side of the case at issue the judge explained 
the law. "in such cases made and provided," and very often effected a 
reconciliation or compromise without the delay and expense of a trial 
in open court. In cases where the rights of minors were involved, 
appearance was made by a parent or guardian, and in the case of a 
female by her husband or next friend. The court of conciliation was 
abolished in 1867. 

The first session of the common pleas court in iliami county was 
held in January, 1853, with Robert F. Groves as judge. After that 
the eonnnon pleas judges, with the time each entered upon his official 
duties, were as follows : Samuel L. McFadin, January, 1857 ; Kline 6. 
Shryoek, November, I860; D. D. Dykeman. November, 1862; T. C. 
Whiteside, Jul.y, 1865 ; James H. Carpenter, November, 1870 ; Daniel 
P. Baldwin, March, 1871 ; John Mitchell, December, 1872. Early in the 
year 1873 the common pleas court was abolished by an act of the legis- 
lature, the last session in Miami county being held in March of that 
year. All cases pending in the court were transferred to the circuit 
court for final adjudication. 

A list of. the probate and common pleas judges has already been 
given in connection with the history of those courts. Following is a 
list of the judicial officials of Miami county since its organization, or 
of the district of which Miami county was a part, with the year in 
which each was elected or entered upon the duties of his office. 

Circuit Judges — Gustavus Everts, 1834; Samuel C. Sample, 1836; 
Charles W. Ewing, 1837; Henry Chase (appointed), 1839; John W. 


Wright (elected), 1839; Horace P. Biddle, 1847; Robert H. Milroy, 
1852; John U. Pettit, 1853; John Hrowulee, 1854; John W. Wallace, 
1855; Horace P. Biddle, I860; Dudley PI. Chase, 1872 (Judge Chase 
was a resident of Cass county and when the legislature of 1873 redis- 
trieted the state Cass was thrown in another district, leaving Miami 
county without a circuit judge) ; John U. Pettit (appointed for Wabash 
and Miami), 1873; Lyman Walker, 1878; J. D. Connor, 1889; James 
M. lirovni (appointed), 1889; Jabez T. Cox, 1890: Joseph N. TiJlett, 

Assocuitc Judges — Jacob Wilkinson and Stephen S. Shanks, 1834; 
George S. Fenimore, 1836; Albert Cole, 1841; Daniel Potter, 1848. The 
office of associate judge was abolished in 1852. 

Proseculiiif) Attorneys — Samuel C. Sample, 1834; Tliomas John- 
son, 1836 ; Spier S. Tipton, 1842 ; William Z. Stewart, 1844 ; David M. 
Dunn, 1846; William S. Palmer (for March term only), 1847; Nathan- 
iel McGuire, 1848; William Potter, 1849; John M. Wilson (special prose- 
cutor) 1852; John Connell, 1853; Isaiah M. Harlaji, 1854; Orris Blake, 
1856; R. P. Dellart, 1858; W. S. Benham. 1860; M. H. Kidd, 1861; 
Thomas C. Whitside, 1862; Dudley II. Chase, 1866; Alexander lless, 
1870; Nott H. Antrim, 1874; Macy Goode, 1878; Charles Pence, 1884; 
E. T. Reasoner, 1886; Frank D. Butler. 1890; Joseph N. TiUett, 1894; 
Lyman B. Sullivan, 1898; John T. Armitage, 1900; Claude Y. Andrews, 
1902; John H. Shunk, 1904; Vites E. Kagy, 1906; George F. Merley, 
1910 (resigned and Hal C. Phelps appointed to the vacancy) ; Hal C. 
Phelps, 1912. 

The Bar 

Along with many other institutions of the "good old times" the 
pioneer lawyer has gone, never to return. When ]\iiami county was 
organized there was not a resid(>nt attorney within her borders. The 
lawyers of that day rode tlic circuit with the judge and practiced in 
all, or nearly all. the counties of tlie judicial district. Each carried 
his library — a few standard text-books on law, with jin occasional vol- 
ume of reports — in a pair of saddle-bags thrown across his liorsc behind 
him and they were always accommodating enough to lend l)Ooks to eacii 
other. In those days there were no steam heated hotels in the count}' 
st-ats and after the court adjourned for the day the judge and the law- 
yers would gather in front of a Inige tireplace in the log tavern, where 
they could chew tobacco, spit in the fire, review cases in which they 
had participated, and "swap yarns" until it was time to retire. But 
next morning the sociability ceased. The judge resumed his dignity 


when he took his seat upon the bench and the lawyers buckled on their 
armor for the fray. Perhaps some lawyers of the present day, (juar- 
tered in modem office buildings, with a well selected library of legal 
authorities, with a stenographer to take briefs from dictation and tran- 
scribe them on a typewriter, with a telephone at his elbow, may show 
an inclination to sneer at the old time lawyer, but it must be remem- 
bered that "there were giants in those days." As the student of Indi- 
ana historj- looks back over the pages of the past he sees the names of 
early lawj^ers who helped to lay the foundation of the state's institu- 
tions, and of jurists whose opinions are still quoted by the courts as 
the very quintessence of legal authority. 

Among the early attorneys who practiced^ in Miami county were 
David H. Colerick, Charles Ewing and Henry Cooper, of Fort Wayne ; 
Benjamin Hurst, Heni-y Chase, John W. and Williamson Wright, of 
Logansport. John Bush is credited with having been the first resi- 
dent attorney in the county. Little is kno^vn of him beyond the fact 
that he purchased the ferry across the Wabash river and operated it 
in connection witli his law practice. To protect his interest in this 
matter he was one of the leading opponents to the proposition to build 
a bridge over the river, as already mentioned. A complete list of attor- 
neys prior to 1843 cannot be obtained. At the September term in 1843 
the following lawyers were admitted to pi'aetice in the Miami cir- 
cuit court: Daniel D. Pratt, Horace P. Biddle. William Z. Stewart, 
Ebenezer P. Loveland. Alphonso A. Cole, Nathan O. Ross, Spier S. 
Tipton and M. W. Seely. Most of these men had been admitted to 
practice some years before that date, but then, for the first time, their 
names appear upon the records as attorneys at the Miami county bar. 
Of these gentlemen Loveland, Cole, Ross and Seely were residents of 
Miami county. 

E. P. Loveland was born at West Rutland, Vermont, November 25, 
1817. Ten years later his parents removed to Granville, Ohio, where 
he received his early education in the public schools. After the death 
of his father in 1833 he taught school, studying law in his spare time, 
and then entered a law office at Richmond, Indiana, where he com- 
pleted his legal education. In 1840 he came to Miami county and began 
the practice of his profession in Peru. For a time he was the senior 
partner of the law firm of Loveland & Beal and later was a.ssociated 
with Nathan 0. Ross, in the firm of Loveland & Ross, which was regarded 
as one of the leading law firms of the county. In 1856 he founded 
the Peru Bepuilicwti and from 1863 to 1867 was assistant paymaster 
of the Indiana Legion. He was vice-president of the company that 
built the railroad between Peru and Laporte and was one of the prime 


movers in liriii|:;iiij:' the Howe Sewing Marliinc Works to Peru. When 
that factory liuriicil on February 10, 1871, Mi-. Lovelaud lost his life 
by being erushcd by falling debris while trying to save the liuiidiiig 
from destruetion. The members of the bar met and passed resolutions 
of sympathy and condolence, one of which declared: "That by this 
dreaded visitation our county has lost a worthy citizen and the l)ar a 
member who had the ability to have achieved its highest honors." Two 
of Mr. Loveland's sons — Hood !'. and Robert J. — are now members of 
the Miami county bar. 

Alphonso A. Cole was born at Zanesville, Oliio, December 25, 1818, 
a son of Judge Albert and ilary (Galpin) Cole. His paternal grand- 
father was Captain Stephen Cole, a Revolutionary soldier, who lived 
at Farmiiifrton, Herlin and Kensington, Connecticut, from 1745 to 
1801. In 18:i4 Alphonso A. Cole came with his father to Peru. He 
studied civil cngincci-ing and he began his business career as an assistant 
engineer on the Wabash & Erie canal before ho was of age. Later he 
studied law and was admitted to jiracticc at the Miami county bai-. In 
February, 1845, he formed a partnership with Merrilt \V. Seely, under 
the firm name of Cole & Seely. Afterward he was at different times 
associated with Edward T. Dickey, in tlie firm of Cole & Dieke.v, and 
with Daniel T). Pratt, in the firm of Pratt & Cole. From 1847 to 1851 
he represented Miami county in the lower house of the Indiana legis- 
latui'e. On Decemi)er 25, 1850, he married Miss Sarah, daughter of 
Dr. Denjiimin and Rachel (Stinson) Henton. In the fall of 1854. on 
account of failing health, he removed to his farm "Fountainglen," 
three miles nortliwest of Peru, where lie contiimed to reside until his 
death on August 2. 1862. He left a widow and tliree sons — Richard 
II.. Charles A. and James Omar Cole, Jr. The mother of these sons 
died on ^larch 1, 1906, and James O. Cole, Jr., died in 1881. 

Nathan O. Ross was an able and successful advocate, a diligent 
student of the law in all its phases and a safe coun.selor. He was not a 
brilliant orator, but wiiat he said had weight with courts and juries 
because of his high standing and reputation as a lawyer. During the 
later years of his practice he was the attorney for the Pan Handle 
Railniad and spent most of his time in Logansport. 

Among the lawyers admitted in 1845 wa.s John M. Wilson, who later 
became one of the most noted criminal lawyers of the Wabash valley. 
He had scarcely established idmself in the practice of his profession 
at Peru when the Jlexican war began and he raised a company for 
service in that conflict. As captain of the company he made a good 
military record, after which he resumed his law practice until the 
beginning of tie- war of ISGl, when he again forsook the forum for the 


field and rose to the rank of colonel. He then praetieed law until a 
short time before his death in April. 1876. At the time of his death. 
Judge John U. Pettit, who knew him well, paid him this tribute: "In 
many respects Colonel Wilson was a remarkable man. To his last he 
had the warmth and cheeriness and loving confidence of a child. Here 
at the bar he is best known. He had, so to express it, a genius of speech 
— sentences not contrived, measured and modulated, clothed in the 
drapery of chosen language, warm with thought and feeling, and on 
proper occasions said with just resentment, were often full of eloquence. 
If he had any fault of mental character, it was that to natural resources, 
so ready and always at hand, they were relied on for the occasion, 
sudden, instead of being husbanded and trained and disciplined for 
great opportunities." 

In March, 1856, Josiah and John L. Farrar were admitted to prac- 
tice in the circuit court of Miami county and both became leading mem- 
bers of the bar. They were brothers, born in Jefferson county. New 
York, and came with the family to Miami county in 1847. John read 
law with Charles E. Stuart, of Kalamazoo, Michigan, and Josiah 
studied for awhile with H. J. Shirk, of Peru, after which he returned 
to New York and completed his legal studies in the city of Rochester. 
The brothers then formed a partnership and engaged in practice in 
Peru. John achieved a wide reputation as criminal lawyer and was a 
public speaker of great force and eloquence. Josiah entei'ed the Union 
army in 1862 a.s captain of Company D, Ninety-ninth Indiana Infan- 
try, and was mustered out at the close of the war as colonel of the regi- 
ment. His son, William C. Farrar, is still a practicing attorney of 

James N. Tyner was admitted to the Miami county bar about the 
beginning of the year 1860. He was born in Franklin county, Indiana, 
January 17, 1826. His mother was a sister of Noah Noble, governor 
of Indiana, and James Noble, one of the early United States senators 
from this state. Mr. Tyner was educated at the Brookville Academy, 
after which he went to Cambridge City, Indiana, and engaged in mer- 
cantile pursuits. In June, 18.51, he located in Peru, where he was 
admitted to the bar and formed a partnership with James M. Brown, 
under the firm name of Brown & Tyner. In 1856 he was the Republi- 
can candidate for representative in the state legislature, but was 
defeated by a small majority. From that year to 1862 he served at 
each legislative session as one of the secretaries of the senate, when he 
was appointed special agent of the postoffice department, in charge of 
the postal service in Indiana and Illinois. He was removed in 1866 
by order of President Johnson and two years later was elected to rep- 


resent his district in Conu^ress. After serving three terms in Congress 
he was appointed second assistant postiiiastcr-seneral by President 
Grant, in whieii position he had full charge of all mail contracts of the 
United States. Ui)on the retirement of Mr. Jewell, Mr. Tyner became 
postmaster-general, serving in that position from July, 1876, to Jlarch, 
1877. when Grant's administration came to a close. Under President 
Hayes' administration he held the position of first-assistant postmaster- 
general, where 111' had full control of the appointments in the postal 
service in the northern and border states. After retiring from the 
postoffice department he located at Washington, D. C, where he died 
on December 5, 1904. 

John ilitchell, the last judge of the common pleas court in Jliami 
county, was a native of Bristol, England, where he was born Septem- 
ber 24, 1829. lie came with his parents to the United States in 1833 
and ten years later the family settled in Peru. After attending the 
public schools, lie went to an academy at Cambridge City and there 
finished his schooling. He then learned the tailor's trade and while 
working at that occupation studied law with Alphonso A. Cole. In 
1861 he was elected justice of the peace and in December, 1863, was 
admitted to the bar. Soon after that he formed a partnership with 
Harvey J. Shirk and engaged in active practice. In the fall of 1872 he 
was elected judge of the court of common pleas, but that tribimal was 
abolished by the legislature which met in the succeeding January. 
Judge Mitchell then resumed the practice of his profession. Although 
not a brilliant man. Judge Mitchell was a logical and convincing 
speaker and had the reputation of being a safe counselor. 

Harvey J. Shirk, mentioned above as the partner of Judge JMitchell, 
was born in Franklin county, Indiana, January 20, 1826. It is a coin- 
cidence that two men destined to occupy prominent positions in the 
Miami county bar should have been born in the same county, within 
three days of each other, as Mr. Shirk's birth occurred three days after 
that of James \. Tyner, and in the same locality. In 1846 Mr. Shirk 
graduated at Oxford College, Ohio, and soon afterward took up the 
study of law in the office of John D. Howland, of Brookville. In the 
fall of 1849 he was admitted to the bar and the next year located at 
Peru, where he soon established a lucrative practice. In 1865 the firm 
of Shirk & Mitchell was formed and, with the exception of the short 
time I\Ir. Mitchell served as judge of the court of common pleas, this 
association lasted for nuiiiy years, or until a short time before Mr. 
Shirk's death in September, 1889. 

Other early attorneys who practiced in Miami county were William 
J. Ilolmau, J. D. Connor, John F. Dodds and Joseph B. Underwood, 


admitted in 18-15 ; Isaac Hartinan, 1819 ; E. P. Dickey and ^leredith 
H. Kidd, 1851; R. P. Bffinger, John M. Connell and Daniel M. Cox, 
1853; John R. Coft'roth, James M. Talbott and John M. Washburn, 
1859; J. M. Robinson, Calvin Cowgill and S. W. Robertson, I860; W. 
W. Sullivan and A. B. Charpie, 1867 ; Henry T. Underwood and Alex- 
ander Hess, 1869. 

Two members of the Miami county bar — one dead and the other 
living — are deserving of more than passing mention. R. P. Efftiiger, 
who died some ten or twelve years ago, is remembered as one of the 
most finished orators of the Wabash valley. His persuasive eloquence 
has thrilled many a court-room audience and influenced the jury. Wil- 
liam E. ilowbray, who has practiced law in Peru for more than a 
quarter of a century, is the oldest living member of the bar and is no 
doubt entitled to the honorary designation of "dean of the Miami 
county bar." 


The Miami County Bar Association was organized in 1904. with 
Walter C. Bailey as president and Edgar P. Kling as secretary. These 
officers have held their respective positions ever since the organization 
of the association. Some attempts have been made before 1904 to form 
a bar association, l)ut they accomplished nothing of a permanent char- 
acter. The association as at present organized has no regular time of 
meeting and is rarely called together, except upon the occasion of the 
death of one of the members. Soon after the organization was effected 
a minimum fee bill was adopted, fixing certain charges for spi'cified 
services, and for several yeare the association gave annual picnics, 
when the members would join in a fishing excursion to Lake Manitou 
at Rochester, but in recent years these picnics have been abandoned. 
Every lawyer who practices in the Miami circuit court and is a resident 
of the county is considered a member of the association. A list of these 
attorneys, taken from recent court calendars, is as follows : 

Claude Y. Andrews, T. W. Annabal, Nott N. Antrim, John T. 
Armitage, Leroy Arnold, William H. Augur, Henry S. Baile.y, Walter 
C. Bailey, Charles P. Baldwin (Amboy), Aaron S. Berger, Arthur L. 
Bodurtha, Frank D. Butler, Charles B. Cannon, Albert H. Cole, 
Charles A. Cole, Jabez T. Cox, H. H. Crites, John W. Eward (Con- 
verse), William C. Farrar, Joseph A. Faust, Burton Green, Charles 
Griswold, Charles Haag, Charles R. Hughes, Hurd J. Hurst. V^ites E. 
Kagy, Edgar P. Kling, Milton Kraus, John F. Lawrence, H. P. Love- 
land, Robert. J. Loveland, W. B. McClintic, William E. Mowbray. Hal 


C. Phelps, Diivid Iv Khodis. (tliviT II. Kliodcs. Rali)li V. Sollilt, .lamt-s 
F. Stutesman, ^V. W. SuUivau, Joseph N. TilU'tt, Albert Ward, l.ouis 
White, G. R. York. 

Prominent Cases 

During the entire eighty years of Miami county's existence as a 
separate political organization, very few trials have occurred in the 
county tliat attracted wide-spread attention. Soon after the county 
was organized a man named Martin Wilhidm settled in Butler town- 
ship. His daUiditer began to receive the attentions of a young man 
named IJllery, a proceeding to which her fathei- ol)jected, and he for- 
bade the yotuig man to enter the house. Shortly after tliis preemptory 
order was issued the father discovered his daughter and young Ullery 
talking together one evening near the house. Enraged to think that 
his daughter would di.sobey his conuiiands, he stepped out into the 
yard and fired a shot which killed THlery almost instantly. A son, Wil- 
liam \Vilhelm, hearing the shot, also ran out of the house and fired 
his pistol, but, as he afterward claimed, at random. The father and 
son then carried the body to the Mississinewa river and sank it in the 
stream, securely fastening it, as they supposed, to the bottom. Some 
weeks later a traveler, while crossing the river on horseback at a ford 
some distance below, was surprised to see the body of a man drift 
against his horse's legs while the animal was drinking. The corpse was 
identified as that of Ullery and Wilhelm and his son w-ere arrested upon 
the charge of murder. Their trial was the first murder case to come 
before the ]Miami circuit court. It was held in the Presbyterian church, 
where the sessions of the court were held for several years after tlie 
burning of the coui't-house, and the room was crowded during the entire 
hearing of the case. Both i'athei- and son were found guilty and were 
sentenced to the ])eintcntiai'y, the latter receiving much the longer 
term. The did man served his term and returned to his farm in Butler 
townslii[i. Just before his death, some time after his release from 
prison, he confessed that he was guilty of the death of Ullery and his 
son was permitted to go free. Jonathan Johnson bought the Wiliielm 
farm and when tearing down the old cabin found moulds for making 
counterfeit coins, indicating that the old man Wilhelm had been 
engaged in other violations of law. 

Tlie first penitentiary sentence, of which there is any record, was 
imposed by the court at the September term, 1S4:{, when James M. 
Thompson was sent to state's prison fur two years for gi-and lai-ceiiy. 

Caleb Faunce W'as fouiul guilty of murder in the second degree in 


1850 and sentencetl to tlu' penitentiary for two years, the jury Kudiug 
him guilty of having voluntarily, killed a man named Godfroy. An 
effort was made to secure a pardon for him, but it failed and he served 
out his term. There have been other murders in the county, but a 
majority of the eases were taken to other counties on change of venue, 
and there has probably never been a murder trial in the county that 
attracted so much attention as that of Martin Wilhelm and his son. 
It is greatly to the credit of Miami county that there has never been a 
case of capital punishnuMit or legal execution within her borders. 



Early Conditions in the Wabash Valley — Work and Fees of the 
Frontier Doctor — Malaria — Character of the Pioneer Physician 
• —His Remedies — His Social Standing — Balzac's Tribute to the 
Country Doctor — Brief Sketches of Early Practitioners — List 
OP Old Time Doctors — Miami County Medical Society — Medical 
Registration Law — ^Licensed Physiclvns in Miami County. 

One of the most useful iiidivitluals in a new settlement is the physi- 
cian, yet the life of the doetor on the frontier of eivili/.ation was not all 
sunshine and roses. About the only incentive to a young physician 
to locate in a new country was the liope of "gettino: in on the ground 
floor," so that he might reap his reward hy being a participant in the 
good things that came to the pioneers as the country developed. When 
the first physicians came to Miami county the region was sparsely settled, 
no roads were opened, calls luui to hf made on horseback through the 
woods, and the doctor frequently rode long distances to visit his patients, 
who were scattered over a wide expanse of territory. Money was rare 
in the frontier settlements and the doctor was often compelled to take his 
fee in coonskins. fresh pork or other i)roducts of the farm. Sometimes 
he received no fee at all, l)ut this did not deter liiiii fi-oin doing his duty 
and ministering to the afflicted. 

In the Wabash valley especially the physician was a welcome addi- 
tion to the populatioiL For some time after the first settlers came 
the ague — generally spoken of in that day as the chills and fever — was 
a prevalent disease. Mosriuitoes multiplied by millions in the stagnant 
pools and ponds and carried the malaria gei-m to the homes of the i)io- 
ueer settlers with the utmost impartiality. Rich and poor, the innocent 
babe and the old and infirm suffered alike from this common malady. 

Viewed in the light of modern medical progress, the old time doctor 
might be considered a ''back number."' There were no drug stores to 
fill prescriptions, so he carried his stock of medicines about with him in 
a pair of pill-bags— a contrivance consisting of two leathern boxes, each 
containing a number of compartments for vials of ditferent sizes, and 



these boxes were fastened together by a broad strap that was thrown 
over the rear of the saddle. Many times the doetor was not a graduate 
of a medical college, liaving aeqiiii-ed his professional training by 
"reading" with some other physician. 

Duncan, in his Reminiscences, says thai the early physicians "pro- 
vided themselves with a goodly supply of the largest lancets and unmeas- 
ured quantities of English calomel." In addition to the calomel his 
principal stock of drugs was made up of Peruvian bark (quinine had 
not yet come into general use), .jalap, tartar emetic, Dover's powders, 
salts and castor oil. Nearly every physician knew the formula for mak- 
ing "Cook's pills," which were generally prescribed in cases where the 
patient was suffering from a torpid liver. Besides the lancet, which was 
freely used in letting blood in cases of fever, his principal surgical 
instrument was the old fashioned "turnkey," for extracting teeth, for 
the doetor was a dentist as well as physician. No X-ray machine, or 
other costly or elaborate apparatus, graced his office and his library 
was limited to a few of the standard text-liooks of that period. 

The pioneer jjliysician had a wholesome contempt for germs and 
microbes and frequently went about his business without pausing to con- 
sider whether his clothing was in an antiseptic condition or not. But 
there was one redeeming feature about the early physician. He did 
not assume to know it all, and as his practice increased he usually made 
efforts to keei) pace with the times by attending a medical college some- 
where, the better to qualify himself for his chosen calling. His patrons 
looked upon him as a friend, as well as a professional adviser, and on 
the occasion of his visits to their homes the best piece of fried chicken 
or the largest piece of pie often found its way to his plate. 

In his travels about the settlement he heard all the latest gossip, knew 
what was passing in the minds of the citizens, and that knowledge fre- 
quently gave him an opportunity to serve his neighbors in some public 
capacity. A list of the county officials shows that the doctor was often 
called upon to discharge some local position of and responsibility, 
to represent his constituents in the state legislature, or even in the halls 
of Congress. It is quite probable that as many male children in the 
United States have been named for the family physician a.s for the 
country's great warriors, philosophers or statesmen. 

The celebrated French novelist, Honore de Balzac, pays a tribute to 
the country doctor in his story of that name when he says: "It is not 
without reason that people speak collectively of the priest, the lawyer 
and the doctor as 'men of the black robe' — so the saying goes. The first 
heals the wounds of the soul, the second those of the purse, and the 


tliii'd tliosc of till' body. Tlif\- rcjirrst'iit the tlircc jiriiiripal rlciiiciits 
necessary to the existeiiee of society — eoiiseienee, pi'operty and health." 

Clearing, enltivalion and di'ainafrc liave changed the character of 
the Wabash vall(\'. 1''c\it and a^iic have disappeared and in their 
train has come a whole ari'ay of new diseases that has elianged the methods 
of healing. Drastic remedies, the hmeet and the Ini'nkey have disap- 
peared and in their stead have come new I'emedies and aiipliances. In 
this march of medii-al progi'ess tlie physicians of Miami county have 
kept step and occupy an lionorahle place iu the profession. The early 
physicians did the best they knew-, according to the ethics and customs 
of their profession in that day. hut W(>re some of them to return they 
would no doubt be at a loss to unilerstand the treatment administered 
by the modern physician. Yet these old timers made possible the present 
era in the practice of medicine. Each contributed in his humble way 
to the advance of medical science as it advanced step by step to its pres- 
ent status. It is proper, thm. to condone the mistakes of the early 
doctor, as view'cd from the standpoint of tlie present, and give him credit 
for sincerity of purpose and honest effort in the treatment of his 
patients at a time when the educated physician was the exception rather 
than the i-ule. 

The first physician iii .Miami county, of whom an\thinir dcliiiite 
can be learned, was Dr. -James T. Liston, who is credited with having 
built the first house in Peru. Dr. Jjiston was born in New (.'astle county, 
Delaware, September Itj, 1804, and received a good education in the 
schools of his native state and Pennsylvania. In 1828 his i)ar(iits 
removed to Indiana and settled at Richmond. Thi-ee years later the 
young man received his degree of M. D. and began practice at iluncie. 
Subsequently he practiced in Winchester, the county seat of Randolph 
county, for about five years and then came to Peru about the time Miami 
county was organized. His ilaughter, Phebe A. Liston, is said to have 
been the first female white child born in Peru, and was also the first to 
die in tlic town. After many years of active practice in Peru and the 
surrounding country, Di-. Liston retired and passed the closing years 
of his life with his son, .Jolm W. Liston, near Bunker Hill, in the south- 
ern part of the county. Dr. Liston was a Mason, an Odd Fellow, a mem- 
ber of the t'hi'istian chuich, and one of his prouilesl recollections was 
that he voted for Andrew Jackson for president of the I'nited States. 

Dr. Ik'n.jamin Hcnton was one of the conspicuous physicians of Peru 
for many years, where he practiced his profession from LS:j7 to istili. 
His residence was on the south side of East Second street, about half 
a block from Broadway. Dr. Ileiiton was not only a successful physician, 
but was also a man of kindly, benevolent disposition and was beloved 


by the entire community. He was the father of Coleman Henton, who 
served two terms as sheriff of lliami oounty and was also township 
trustee ; James T. Henton, Mrs. Alphonso A. Cole, ilrs. Alvin Thayer 
and Jlrs. David Oliver Adkison. 

Dr. A. Keiser was another of the early physicians of the county 
seat. In his latter years he published a little pamphlet on the early 
history of Peru. He lived to a ripe old atre and was still in the harness 
as late as 1875, or perhaps even later. 

Dr. Henry V. Passage was born in Dayton, Ohio, and came to Indiana 
with his parents when he was about one year old. His ancestors came 
over with LaFayette and took part in the Revolution and his father 
was with Commodore Perry in the battle of Lake Erie in 1S13. Dr. 
Passage was a politician as well as a physician and served IMiami county 
three terms in the legislature. He was noted as a doctor who responded 
to the calls of those in advei-sity, paying little attention, it is said, to 
his collection of fees from those unable to pay. The many friends gained 
in this way gave him power in conventions and at the polls, though 
it is but just to state that it was a generous disposition rather than 
political ambition that won for him this large circle of friends. 

Dr. Jared Spooner was a physician who also won eminence as a 
surgeon. He had great regard for his chosen profession and tried to 
keep abreast of the times in everything pertaining to medicine and 
surgery. On at least two occasions he took post-graduate courses after 
he had raised a family, on the theory that "a man is never too old to 
learn." He was distinctly noted for his strictly temperate habits. He 
used neither tobacco nor intoxicating liquors, yet he died while still 
in the prime of life, notwithstanding his apparent care of the body along 
the lines prescribed for health and longevity. 

Dr. C. E. Rutherford, a homeopathic physician who died in Peru 
in the winter of 1913 at the age of more than four score years, was a 
veteran of three wars. His first military service was in the war with 
]\Iexico, after which he was in the first war with the Sioux Indians and 
served in the Union army in the War of the Rebellion. He was of quite 
an investigating turn of mind and more than twenty-five years before 
his death he gave a definition of electricity which was favorably alluded 
to by some eminent scientist in 1913. He was a bachelor. 

Dr. J. W. Ellis was a successful physician of Peru along in the 
'70s and '80s and Dr. Henry Alford practiced in Peru in the latter '80s 
and early '90s, but as old age began to creep on he removed back to 
Cass county, where he died a few years ago. 

For many years Dr. T. F. Ijams was a familiar and unusual char- 
acter at North Grove, and in fact all over the southern part of the 


county. He had a largo country practice but he did not depend entirely 
upon pills and powders for his living, as he was also the village inn- 
keeper and money lender. He always carried large sums of money 
upon his person and it is said that when he died some $15,000 was found 
in his clothing. He was of unusually large stature and this, with other 
peculiarities, made him a conspicuous figure and one long to 
be remembered. 

In the latter '8()s Dr. E. B. North was for a while the local surgeon 
in charge of the AVabash Railway hospital. He was a fine physician, 
skillful surgeon and popular as a citizen. One morning, while on his 
way to the hospital, he discovered a man named Christiansen, who wa.s 
under the influence of liquor, engaged in annoying some peaceable peo- 
ple. Dr. North went to the scene as a peacemaker, his object being to 
persuade Christiansen to leave the premises, but the drunken man hap- 
pened to be armed with a revolver and taking offense at the doctor's 
interference, fired upon him, inflicting a mortal wound. Dr. North died 
the following night and some infuriated citizens took Christiansen from 
the jail and hanged him to the bridge over the Wabash river at the foot 
of Broadway. This is the only ease of mob law recorded in the history 
of Miami county. The man Christiansen was not a vicious character 
when he was sober and had he been in his normal state the crime would 
not have been committed. As it was Peru lost an eminent physician 
and had her fair name sullied by a lynching. 

Dr. E. H. Sutton located at Gilead about 1840 and practiced there 
for nearly fifteen years. At that time the country around Gilead was 
infested by a lawless element and Dr. Sutton was one of the principal 
figures in the organization of a vigilance committee to rid the country 
of the outlaws. A full account of this event is found in another chapter. 
After several years in Gilead, Dr. Sutton removed to Akron, Fulton 
county, and later to Macy, where he passed the latter years of his life 
Those who knew him well describe him as "a kindly soul, gentle and 
lovable as a woman." One of his old neighbors recently told the writer 
that nothing too good could be said of this estimable, old-time country 
physician. He had the reputation of being of quite an inventive turn 
of mind and some amusing stoi'ies are told of his adventures and experi- 
ences when he occasionally forsook his profession for the side issue of 
mechanics, in which he displayed considerable ingenuity, notwithstand- 
ing his failure to find fame and fortune as an inventor. 

Dr. John II. Emswiler came to Miami county at an early date and 
practiced his profession in the city of Peru for many years, being re- 
garded as one of the leading physicians in bis day. For some time he 
served as a member of the city school boai-d and was for years engaged 


ill the mereantile business on Broadway as the seuior member of the 
firm of Emswiler and son. He died in September, 1884. 

Dr. John C. Helm, who came to Miami county in 1844, was one of 
the best known of the pioneer physicians. He was born on November 7, 
1800. at Charleston, West Virginia, and two years later his parents 
removed to Tennessee. When only eleven yeai-s of age he entered Wash- 
ington College and while a student in that institution walked to and 
from the school everj- day, a distance of three and a half miles. He 
then studied medicine and in 1835 removed to Preble county, Ohio, 
where he practiced until he came to Miami county, Indiana. After 
coming to this county he became interested in other enterprises. He 
built a large flour mill at Peru and another at Peoria, where he estab- 
lished his home, but later returned to Peru and practised his profession 
until his death, which occurred on September 7, 1874. While living in 
Tennessee he married ^liss Amy Hampton, by whom he had eight 

Dr. John H. Helm, a son of the above, was born at Elizabethtown, 
Tennessee, April 23. 1826. His early medical training was under the 
direction of his father, afte|- which he read with other preceptors and in 
1847 was graduated at the Ohio Medical College, in Cincinnati. About 
a year before he received his degree he entered the army and with 
General Wool's command served one year in the war with Mexico. 
After graduating he practiced at Eaton, Ohio, until 1860, when he re- 
moved to Peru, Indiana. He was the first president of the iliami 
County iledical Society and in 1876 was elected president of the Indiana 
State Medical Society. He was also a member of the American Medical 
Association and was the organizer of the Peru board of health, of which 
he was the first pi-esideut. His son, Dr. Charles J. Helm, is now a prac- 
ticing physician of Peru, so that for three successive generations this 
family has been ably represented upon the roster of Miami county 

Another early physician was Doctor John Barnes, who located at 
Santa Pe in 1847. He was born in Harrison count.v, Virginia, August 
29, 1815, studied under Dr. J. C. Howard, of Mansfield, Ohio, and began 
practice at Leesville in that state. In 1845 he came to Indiana and first 
located at Somerset, Wabash county. Two years later he removed to 
Santa Fe and practiced there until 1865. He then removed to Gilead 
and in November, 1879, to Maey, where he continued in practice until 
a short time before his death. Dr. Barnes was a representative country 
doctor and during the half century he practiced in Miami county was 
one of its highly respected citizens. He was a member of the Methodist 
church and took a keen interest in public afli'airs as a Republican, of 
which party he was one of the founders. 


111 IS4!) Dr. .loliii (^>. A. luililiins (•ainc to .Miami county and I'Stab- 
lisiicd hiiiisflf at Ciiiii. wIuti' Dr. ^V. .1. Chanilu'rlain iiad located two 
years before and wa.s tile first pliysieian in tlie village. Dr. Rol)hins 
was lioi'ii 111 Wayne eoiinty, Indiana, Xoveiulier 6, lS2(i, and was tliere- 
fore Init tweiity-tliree years of age when lie eauie to Miami eounty. 
When sixtei-n years old he began the study of iiiedieiiie under Dr. James 
Ruby, ill his native county, and upon reaching his majority began prac- 
tice. Although not a graduate of a medical college, Dr. Robbins was a 
successful ithysiciaii for that day. In 1856, after the death of his wife, 
he relurneti to AVayne county and then traveled through the West to 
recover his iicalth. In ISSl he returned to Miami county and located 
at Denver. 

The first physician to locate in the town of Bunkei- Hill was a Dr. 
Hufford, who was also engaged in merchandising. Dr. James A. Meek, 
the second jjliysician in the town, was born in 8eott county, Indiana, 
August 18. 1828. When twenty years of age he began the study of 
medicine with his uncle. Dr. T. D. Lemon, of Laporte. He then attended 
lectures at the Indiana .Medical College, then located in Laporte and in 
1850 began practice in Ripley county, Indiana. He soon gave up his 
practice to go to California, during the gold excitement, but late in the 
year 1854 he returned to Indiana and located at Peru. Four years later 
he removed to Bunker Hill, where he i)racticed for many years. He 
was a prominent member of the Masonic fraternity and the Independ- 
ent Order of Odd Fellows, and was one of the charter members of the 
Miami County iMedical Society. 

Dr. A. D. Coe, one of tlu' [)ioneer physicians of Mexico, was a native 
of Portage eounty. Ohio, where he was born on January 24. 1824. He 
began his professional studies under Dr. N. W. Hubbard, of Newark, 
Ohio, after which he attended the Starling Medical College at Colum- 
bus, Ohio, and the Albany ^Medical College, Albany. \ew York. In 1851 
he came to Miami county and for a few years taught school, practicing 
medicine as opportunity offered. In November, 185(), he opened an 
office at Me.xico and engaged in active i)raefice. In the winter of 1857-58 
he attended the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Cincinnati, where 
he received the degree of M. I), in February. 1858. Dr. Coe was a .Mason 
and an Odd Fellow and was reeogni/'.ed as one of the successful jihysi- 
cians and best surgeons of Miami county. Although he built up a large 
practice he died in moderate circumstances, owing to his benevolent 
disposition. His death occurred at Mexico in 1889. 

In 1857 Dr. William II. Hrentoii came to Peru from .southern Illi- 
nois and began the practice of medicine. He was born in Clark county, 
Indiana, May 2, 1828. At the age of sixteen years he began the study 


of medicine under Dr. Frank Taylor, of Westport. Kentuekj'. Later 
he took a course of lectures at ^Memphis, Tennessee, and in 1852 was 
graduated in the medical department of Asbur>' (now DePauw) Uni- 
versity at Greeneastle. Indiana. He began practice, however, in 1849 
at Taylorville, Indiana, and after graduating located at ^Metropolis, 
Illinois, from which place he came to Peru in 1857. In 1862 he enlisted 
as assistant surgeon of the Seventy-third Indiana Infantry and served 
until the following year, when he resigned, having discharged the duties 
of regimental surgeon during the greater part of his service. In 1866 
Dr. Rrenton was graduated with honors at the Bellevue Hospital Medi- 
cal College of New York, after which he was in partnership witli Dr. 
J. O. Ward, of Peru, for over twenty years. He was one of the organ- 
izers of the Miami County Medical vSociety ; was a member of the 
American Medical Association and the Indiana State Medical Society 
and was considered one of the leading physicians and surgeons of the 
Waliash valley. 

Dr. M. D. Ellis was one of the pioneer physicians of Xenia (now 
Converse), where he located some time in the '50s. He found there 
Drs. Frazier and Pope, who had previously established themselves in 
practice. Dr. p]llis was active in recruiting a company in 1862, which 
was nuistered in as Company C, Eighty-seventh Indiana Infantry, with 
Dr. ElUs as first lieutenant. He to the rank of captain and after 
being mustered out located at Peru, where he practiced his profession 
until his death, after serving a term as auditor of Miami county. 

Dr. Abner D. Kimball and his brother, Thomas C. Kimball, were 
among the early practicing physicians of Converse. Both were success- 
ful iloctors. After several years at Converse they removed to Marion 
and Dr. A. D. Kimball was for several years surgeon of the National 
Soldiers' Home at Marion. 

Dr. E. K. Friermood, who located at Amlioy in 1877, was one of the 
well kno\™ physicians of the county for a number of years. He was 
born in Ohio in 1843 and came in his boyhood to Grant county. Indiana, 
with his parents. In 1867 he began the study of medicine with Dr. 
Kimball, above mentioned, and in February, 1869, graduated at the 
Rush Medical College in Chicago. He began practice at North Crove, 
but soon afterward went to Wabash, where he practiced until 1877. 
He then located at Amboy, but later removed to Peru and from there 
to Greentown, Howard county. He died in 1911. 

Dr. John Constant is remembered by old citizens as one of the popu- 
lar physicians of the county. He located in Mexico some years before 
the beginning of the Civil war and after practicing for some time in 
that village he removed to Peru, where he formed a partnership with 


his hrotlicr-iii-law, Di-. lsa;ii- ('. Walker. This association lasted until 
the death of Dr. Constant, after which Dr. Walker removed to Indian- 
ajjolis anil lieeaine one of the pi'Oiuinent physicians of that city. 

While the firm of Constant & Walker was in existence a young man 
began the study of medicine with them who afterward achieved a dis- 
tinguished position among the physicians of Miami county. That was 
Dr. Carter B. Higgins, who was l)orn in Preble county, Ohio, December 
15, 1843, and came to Peiii witii his parents when he was but three years 
of age. He completed the course of study in the Peru public schools, 
graduated at Earlham College and began the study of medicine when 
he was eighteen years old. In 1866 he graduated at the Rush Medical 
College in Chicago and soon afterward formed a partnership with 
Dr. Walkei-. In 18()!) he went to Rochester, where he practiced for a 
short time, when he returned to Peru. He was at one time the secretary 
of the iMiami Counly Medical Society and was treasurer of the Indiana 
State Medical Society. He was also a member of the Am<'rican iledical 
Association and for several years prioi' to his death was the surgeon in 
charge of the Wabash Railway hospital at Peru. 

Dr. Jlilton 'SI. Hoggs, who is now living with his son-in-law in Peru, 
retired from active practice, is one of the old-time physicians of the 
county. He was born in Henry county, Indiana, in 1830, but while still 
in his childhood his parents, removed to Laporte county. In 1831) the 
family removed to Kosciusko county, where the father died in 1842. 
Young Hoggs then returned to Laporte county, where he worked as a 
farm hand until in April, 1847, when he enlisted for service in the 
Mexican war. He was honoi'ably discharged in August, 1848, and 
returned to Leesburg, Kosciusko county, where he began the study of 
medicine. He began practice in that county in 1851 ; removed to Fulton 
county in 1854 and to county in 1859; enlisted in Company E, 
Twenty-ninth Indiana lnfantr>-, in August. 1861; was made captain of 
the company ; resigned on account of disabilities received in line of duty; 
located at North Manchester and practiced his profession there until the 
spring of 1870, when he removed to JIacy. There he conducted a drug 
store in connection with his practice for several years, when he retired. 
He is the only veteran of the Mexican war in Miami county. 

Dr. Cptoii A. Ager. who began practice at Perrysburg in 1868, was 
a native of Starke county, Ohio, where he was born in 1839. When he 
was eight years old his parents removed to Huntington county, Indiana, 
where he received his education in the public schools and select schools 
at Huntington and Roanoke. He began his medical studies in the office 
of Drs. Laymon & Shafer at Huntington and in 1867 was graduated at 
the Rush Medical College at Chicago. In April, 1868, he opened an 


office in Perryshurg, where he practiced for many years. He then 
removed to Peru and there engaged in the sale of carriages and other 
vehicles. He died about 1910. 

Dr. Reuben W. Smith, who settled at Converse in 18.58, was born in 
Henry county, Indiana, in November, 1831; attended the Ohio Medical 
College at Cincinnati in 1855-56 and practiced at Farmland, Indiana, 
until his removal to Converse. In 1871 he was graduated at the Indiana 
Medical College at Indianapolis and continued to practice at Converse 
until he came to he the oldest established physician in that town. He 
was a member of the Indiana and Grant County Medical Societies, a 
member of the Masonic fraternity and a Democrat. 

Dr. Rollin Pence lived to be more than four score years of age. 
Some .vears before his death he removed from Santa Fe to Peru and 
spent his declining years in the enjoyment of the fruits of his labors 
and in the association of a large circle of friends. 

Dr. F. H. Watkins, an Eclectic physician, was a successful practi- 
tioner in Peru for probably thirty j^ears, beginning about 1870, and 
acquired quite a reputation for his success in treating typhoid fever. 

From old newspaper files and other sources has been collected the 
following list of old-time doctors, in addition to those above noted : 
At Amboy, Drs. J. A. Baldwin, H. D. Hattery and John Wright: at 
Chili, Drs. Beekner and Ridenour ; at Converse, Drs. George Egbert and 
0. A. ilendeuhall ; at Denver, Drs. Smith, Ladue and Downey ; at Gilead 
Drs. W. T. Cleland, John A. Marine, William McCoy and A. J. Caples; 
at ilexico, Drs. Brown, Rea.soner and E. N. Banks; at Macy, Drs. James 
McKee, Ford, Weltie, Wright and Ernsberger; at Miami, Drs, T. J. 
Raybell, David EUis, H. B, Rood and A, Armstrong; at North Grove, 
Drs. Brandon and Holton : at Paw Paw, Dr. William Hill ; at Perrys- 
hurg, Drs. Ladue, Shadwick, Detrick and Conner; at Santa Fe, Drs. 
Hendricks, Ginther, Stewart, Foraker, Pence and Pugh ; at Waupecong, 
Drs. Morehead, Hattery and Smith. 

These men have all passed from the stage of action and most of them 
have left little information concerning their history or character. Dr. 
Raybell, who practiced at Miami during the early '50s, is remembered 
as a tine physician. He left there about the beginning of the Civil war 
and no one knows what became of him. Dr. McCoy removed from Gilead 
to Peru, where he was for some time in partnership with Dr. J. O. Ward. 
He married a lad,y whose home was in Madison, Indiana, after which he 
located in that city and practiced there until his death. Dr. J. A. Bald- 
win, of Amboy, was an Eclectic physician. His son is now a physician 
in Peru. Dr. David Ridenour, of Chili, had the reputation of being a 
good doctor, more resourceful than many of his fellow practitioners, 


and enjoyed a large praetice. Many reminiscences are told of the early 
doctors— some eoni])limen1ary and some otherwise. A few were known 
to have a fondness for strong drink; others were noted for their blunt 
and in some instances profane language; some were regarded as skilled 
physicians and others, j)erhaps just as deserving were less successful, 
but upon the whole the men who have practiced the healing art in Miann 
county since its first settlement by white men will compare favorably 
with the phj'sicians in other counties of the state. 

The Miami County Medical Society was organized and articles of 
association filed on January 3, 1875. Those who subscribed to the 
articles of association were E. M. Bloomfield, W. H. Brenton, M. D. 
Ellis, E. K. Friermood, John li. Helm, C. B. Higgins, 0. C. Irwin, E. J. 
Kendall, W. A. McCoy, James M. McKee, S. S. Marsh, James A. Meek, 
J. 0. Ward and W. T. Wilson. Dr. John H. Helm was elected president 
and Dr. J. 0. Ward, secretary. The articles of association set forth 
tlu' objects of the society as being "to advance medical knowledge, 
improve the health and protect the lives of the connounity. and elevate 
the professional character of its members." It was also provided that 
"any regular graduate from a reputable medical college of good moral 
character may become a member of this society by paying into the 
treasury the sum of three dollars." 

The early records of the society have been lost, so that it is impos- 
sible to give a continuous history of its proceedings or a list of its 
presidents. According to the secretary's report at the close of the 
year 1913, the members of the society were E. H. Andrews, M. M. Boggs, 
R. W. Brookie. O. V. Carl, P. B. Carter, J. C. Frets, J. A. Freezee. E. H. 
Griswold, C. J. Helm, A. H. KalbHeisch, E. F. Krat/.er, H. E. Line, 0. R. 
Lynch, F. M. Lynn, B. S. McClintic, M. A. McDowell, L. 0. Malsbury, 
E. A. Mills, A.S. Newell, J. B. Peters, F. L. Rosier, D. C. Ridenour, 
J. P. Spooner, M. II. Taylor, M. L. Wagner, 0. C. Wainscott, L. S. 
Wallace, J. 0. Ward, E. S. Way mire and J. E. Yarling. All these are 
active membei'S with the excejjtion of Dr. .M. M. Boggs, who holds an 
honorary membership on account of his advanced age. 

The officers for the year 1914 were Homer E. Line, president ; Brown 
S. McClintic, vice-president ; ]VIarvin A. McDowell, secretary and treas- 
urer; C. J. Helm, J. P. Spooner and E. J. Griswold, censors. Drs. Otho 
R. Lynch and John E. 'S'ailing were elected delegates to the state 

During liic gi'cat flood in .March, 11)13, the members of the society 
gave their time to looking after the sick and otherwise rendering aid 
to the relief committee. By tlieii- intelligent and concerted action much 
sufi:'ering was averted. They worked in I'clays and some of the physicians 
were always on duty until tin' danger was past. 


The Indiana medical registration law. approved by Governor Mount 
on IMareli 8. 1897, authorized the establishment of a state board of 
medical registration and examination, to consist of five members 
appointed by the governor. It was provided that the four schools or 
systems of medicine having the largest numerical representation in 
the state should each have at least One member upon the board and 
that no school or system of medicine should have a ma.iority of the 
members. This act. with the amendments passed by the legislatures of 
1899, 1901, 1905 and 1909, makes it the duty of the state board to deter- 
mine, by examination or otherwise, the qualifications and fitness of every 
person practicing medicine in the State of Indiana and issue a certifi- 
cate to such person, which, when presented to the county clerk of the 
proper county .shall entitle the holder to a license to practice medicine. 

Under the provisions of the law the county clerk of each county 
in the state is required to submit annually "on the 1st day of January 
of each year, to the State Board of Medical Registration and Examina- 
tion, upon blanks furnished by said board, a duplicate list of all certifi- 
cates^ received and licenses issued by him during the preceding year," 
together with certain information of a statistical nature. 

The board is required to report anniyilly to the governor, using 
the information received from the county clerks and such other infor- 
mation as may be deemed proper and of general interest to the members 
of the profession and the general public. According to the last pub- 
lished report of the state board, the licensed physicians of Jliami county 
were as follows: 

Amboy — John A. Baldwin, Elbert E. Freeman, ^Villiam H. Haifley, 
Francis L. Resler; Bennett's Switch — Eugene F. Kratzer; Bunker HiU 
— John A. Freezee, William A. Oyler, Leroy S. Wallace ; Chili — Homer 
E. Line ; Converse — Roger AV. Brookie, W. S. Gordon, Jlark C. Jones, 
M. C. Kimball, Andrew S. Newell, Luciau W. Smith; Deedsville — John 
C. Frets; Denver — Jay W. Newell, Harry ]\I. Piper, Claudius E. Quinn; 
Gilead — Josiah Brower, Augustus Case, J. W. Wareham; JIacy — John 
B. Peters, E. D. Swift, Merrell H. Taylor; Mexico— Charles F. Rendel; 
Miami— Edwin A. l\Iills; North Grove— John D. Malott; Peini— Ellis 
H. Andrews, William K. Armstrong, C. A. Baldwin, Andrew Blake, E. 
M. Bloomfield, Milton M. Boggs, Edward A. Carlson, Phineas B. Cai-ter, 
A. A. Eikenberry, B. F. Eikenberry, E. B. Flavieu, Clayton E. Good- 
rick, E. H. GrLswold, Homer C. Haas, Charles J. Helm, J. B. Higgins, 
A. H. Kalbtieisch, Otho R. Lynch, Frank M. Lynn, J. 0. ilalsbury, L. 
O. Malsbury, Jabez H. Millikan. Brown S. ilcClintic. ^larvin A. ;\IcDow- 
ell, Hercules Ogle, R. H. Quick. D. C. Ridenour, Jared Spooner, John 
P. Spooner, Claire Taylor, Martin L. Wagner, William H. Wagoner, 


0. ('. Waiiisfott, J. O. Ward, Ellicrt Si. Waymire, Warren II. Willyard, 
Joliii Pi. Yarliiig; Santa Fe — P. G. Foust; Wagoner — Samuel G. Ram- 
sey; Waupecong — Omar U. Carl. 

Since the publication of the above report there have been some 
changes in address, and at least one of the physicians whose names 
appear in the list has joined the silent majority. Dr. E. M. Bloomfield 
died on August 8, 1913. He was born near Eaton. Ohio, December 29, 
1841, was educated in the publie schools of his native county and at tlie 
Miami University at Oxford, Ohio, after which he began the study of 
medicine in the ofifiee of Dr. A. L. Dunham, of Eaton. After thorough 
preparation under this pn^ceptor, he entered the medical department 
of the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, where he graduated as 
a member of the class of 1869. The following year he located at Peru, 
Indiana, where he continued in active practice until his death. He was 
a charter member of the iliami County iledical Society and retained 
his membei-ship as long as he lived. He was also a member of the 
Indiana State Medical Society and the American ]\Iedical Association. 

In the preparation of this chapter the writer desires to acknowledge 
his obligations to Dr. J. O. Ward, who might be appropriately called 
the dean of the medical profession in Miami county. He has been prac- 
ticing in the city of Peru since the spring of 18()9, was the first sec- 
retary of the county medical society after its incorporation, and haa 
always occupied a high place both as a physician and a citizen. 


First Missionaries — The Catholics — Methodists — Presbyterians — 
B.'iJ'TisTS — German Baptists or Dunkards — Christians or Dis- 
ciples — New Lights — United Brethren — Friends or Quakers — 
Episcopal Church — Lutherans — Congregationalists — Seventh 
Day Adventists — The Church of God — Universalists — Brief 
Histories of the Various Congregations and Their Houses op 

Long before any permaueut settlements were made in the Wabash 
valley by white men, Jesuit priests visited the Indians with a view to 
seeuring their conversion to the Christian faith. ]\Iost of the early 
French traders were Catholics and these early missionaries often said 
mass at the trading posts for the benefit of the few white people who 
might be living in the vicinity of the post. It was therefore natural 
that the Catholics should be the first to estal)lish a church organization 
in Miami county. The first priests to hold services at Peru came from 
Bardstown, Kentucky. Father Badin was here as early as 1834 and 
made several visits to the infant city during the next three years. 

When the town of Peru was laid out two lots on tiie northwest corner 
of Fifth and Miami streets were donated as a site for a Catholic church. 
The first building erected thereon was completed in the spring of 1835. 
It was a modest, unpretentious stmcture and was w'ithout a resident 
priest until in 1837, when Father M. J. Clark was assigned to the work 
of building up and ministering to the parish. He remained until 1842 
and during his pastorate the parish was frequently visited by Father 
Maurice St. Palais, whose mis.sionary w'ork took him into the states 
of Indiana, Illinois and ilichigan. When Father Clark left Peru in 
1842, Father St. Palais was the only priest until 1846, when Father 
Fisher took charge. He was succeeded by Fathers McDermot, Carius 
and Zucker, and in April, 1860, Father Bernard Kroeger became pastor. 
He was an active worker and binder his charge the priest's residence was 
built, at a cost of .$2,000 : the Catholic cemetery was purchased and con- 



secrated, iiiid in iSi;.') ;i luick clmi-cli I'difice was eoiiipleted, at a cost of 
$21, ()()(). Till' olti fraiiic clmri-li was then taken for a sehoolhouso and 
used as sueli until it was destroyed by tire during the pastorate of Father' 
Lamour, who succeeded Father Kroeger in October, 1871, and served 
until September, 1^75. A new schooliiouse was ei'ected, at a cost of 
$lti,()Ot). When Father lleury .Meissner took charge in September, 
1875, he found the parish in debt over $16,000 and the business depres- 
sion that followed the panic of 1873 nuide it somewhat difficult to raise 
money. Notwithstanding this the new priest went to work and on 
December 23, 1886, the parish was out of debt. A few years ago the 
church bnihiing was thoroughly overhauled, the walls covered with 
stucco and other improvements made that has given to the congregation 
a comfortable and commodious home. The present mendsership is about 
2,()()0 and the priest in charge is Hcv. John IT. (fncndling. The jiatron 
saint of the parish is 8t. Charles Hoi-roiuco. 

Not long after the of the Civil war Catholic priests fi-om .Marion 
and Kokomo visited the town of Hunker Hill and held services at the 
home of Thomas (iornuui. A church was organized in 1870 and four 
years later a lot was purchased in the north part of town and tlir l)uild- 
ing, which had been used as a shoe shop, was remodeled for a church. 
In 1882 a neat frame house of worship was erected at the north end of 
Elm street, at a cost of $1,300 and the parish of St. Michael had a per- 
manent home. After a number of years the congregation gave up the 
church organization, the members transferring their allegiance to St. 
Charles' church at Peru or other parishes as best suited their 

The ]\Iethodists 

As early as 1831 William M. Reyburn. who was a local preacher of 
this denomination, settled in Miamisport, now a part of Peru. At the 
request of a few ^Methodists living in the neighborhood he conducted 
services at the homes of some of them during the succeeding year. 
According to a history of the Methodist Episcopal church of Peru, 
prepared by W. E. Mowbray and published in Stephens' History of 
Miami County, a class was formed aliout the year 1835. Among the 
members of this class were William M. Reyburn. George S. Fenimore, 
William R. Mowbray and their wives anil Mr. and ]Mrs. .bilui Lowe. 
The first house of worship was completed in the spring of 183t). It was 
built by George Fenimoi-e and John Garrol and was located on West 
Third street, on a lot donated 1)y the proprietors of the town of Peru. 
The country around Peru was organized into a circuit in 1836 and the 
congregation was supplied by "circuit riders" until 184!). when Peru 


was mack' a station. The lot at the northwest corner of Main and 
^Yabash streets was then purehased and the building afterward occu- 
pied by the Odd Fellows was erected. Rev. Walter L. Huffman was the 
fii'st pastor after the station was established. 

Mr. Mowbray, in the article above referred to, says that in 1854 
' ' there was a division of the society, one part of the members remaining 
at the Main street church, and the other worshiping on Third street 
south of the site of the present new church building." According 
to the same authority the two congregations were united in 1859, but 
in 1860 another separation took place, with Rev. V. M. Beamer as 
pastor of the Main street church and Rev. W. R. Edmonson in charge 
of the Third street church. In a short time the building on Third 
street proved to be too small to meet the needs of the congi-egation and, 
according to Rev. Ernest E. Neal, who was pastor of the church a few 
years ago, the Second Presbyterian church, at the corner of Main and 
Miami was purchased. The denomination then had two churches in 
Peru — one on East Main and the other on West Main. The former 
was known as the "silk church" and the latter as the "calico church." 
In 1874 the two congregations were again united. Rev. John C. Mahin 
taking charge as pastor. The church since then has had a steady, 
healthful growth. The present house of worship, at the southeast cor- 
ner of Main and Cass streets was erected in 1890, at a cost of about 
$35,000, and later a parsonage was built at the corner of Main and 
Hood streets at a cost of $3,000. In 1906 the official board of the 
church authorized Giles W. Smith to compile a history of "ilethodism 
in Peru." This history was afterward published. It contains pictures 
of the old church edifices and portraits of some of the pastors and prom- 
inent members. 

About 1833 itinerant Methodist ministers visited Jeiferson township 
and held services at the house of William Smith, near the present town 
of Mexico. In 1835 Rev. John A. Brouse, a Methodist missionary, came 
to the settlements along the Eel i-iver and held services at the homes of 
the settlers. Other missionaries followed and in 1839 a small class 
was organized. Among the members were Nathaniel Leonard, William 
Eidson, Charles Murden, Nathan Raines, Henry Howes, Joseph Burke, 
William Smith and their wives, and Thomas Henry, Asa Leonard, Tim- 
othy, Matthew, Elizabeth and Orpha Murden. In the year 1844 a 
frame house was built on the Rochester road, in the northern part of 
the village of Mexico. This was the beginning of the Mexico Methodist 
church. About that time the Mexico circuit was established by the con- 
ference out of part of the Rochester circuit. In 1864 the circuit was 
divided, only four churches remaining on the Mexico circuit, viz. : Chili, 


Mexico. Bethlehem and Bethel. The same year a hriek house of worship 
was hiiilt at ^Mcxieo. at a eost of about .+2.200. 

The Cliili ilethodist chiii-ch was organized in tin- year lS:i,S or 1S.19, 
though services had been lirld at tlir lionn' of Roliert .Miller a ycai- or so 
before that time a sliort distance oast of tlie village. Little can be learned 
regarding the eai-ly history of this congregation, but it is known that 
meetings were held at the houses of the members until about 1845, when 
a small frame chui-cli was built at Chili. Among the early |)astors were 
Revs. Allen ISkillman, Paul Jones. 0. P. Boyden. Jacob C'olciazei', P. J. 
Beswick, John Davis and William Reeder. In ]8()() a brick house of 
worship was erected, a short distance from the old frame bouse, thus 
giving tile congregation a comfortable and conniiodious home. The sub- 
sequent history of the organization differs but little from that of the 
average village congregation. 

About 1839 Robert ililler and his wife. E. I. Kidd and wife. Ellen 
Kidd. J. D. Cox, Richard and John Miller. Allen Lockridge and a few 
others got together and organized the Paw Paw ]\retho(list church. 
Meetings were held at the homes of the members until al)out 1842. when 
a frame church was erected on the farm of Richard Miller, ad.join- 
ing the village. This church was the leading one of Paw Paw for many 
years, but with the decline of the village it lost much of its former 
prestige, though it is still a typical countrj' church. Rev. S. C. Miller, 
in a historical .sketch of Richland township, published a few years ago 
in the Peru lu publican, says that about a month after the first families 
settled at Paw Paw Robert Miller and Mr. Kidd started for Peru to 
find a preacher to a.ssist them in organizing a church. Taking their 
axes with them, they blazed a trail .southwestward until they came to 
the Indian trace, which they followed to Peru. They did not succi^ed 
in finding a minister, but left woi-d with William M. Reyburn. a local 
preacher of the ^Methodist faith, to request the regidar preacher on his 
retui'n lionic to follow the Indian trace until lie came to a beech tree 
with a hand carved in the bark pointing to the northeast, from which 
place he was to follow the marks or blazes on the trees. A few days 
later a man was seen on horseback working his way along the blazed road 
and it was presumed that he was the minister. This turned 
out to be correct. The preacher first reached the house of Mr. Kidd, 
whence messengers were sent out to other families and in a short time 
a congregation of nineteen persons assembled. This was the first service 
of the Paw Paw Methodist church. 

The Macy Methodist church was organized in 1842, nearly eighteen 
years before the town was laid out. Among the early members were 


George ^Vilkinson, Thomas Clemens. English Ogle, Baldwin and James 
"Wilkinson and their wives and a few others. Services were held at 
the homes of the members for several years before the congregation was 
strong enough to undertake the erection of a church. In 1844 a log 
house of worship was erected at the cross roads, where the town of Maey 
now stands, and this building was used both for school and church 
purposes for several years. "When the new school was built in 
1860 services were held there for some time. A number of new inhab- 
itants came to the town, which was laid out in that year, and steps 
were taken to erect a church building. A lot was procured in Powell 
and "Wilkinson's addition and the new church was dedicated in 1871. 
It cost about $1,400 and served as a home for the congregation for about 
tw'enty years, when it became too small for the attendance. A move- 
ment was therefore started which resulted in the erection of the present 
comfortable and commodious house of worship at the northeast corner 
of ^IcKee and Commerce streets. It is a handsome brick structure, with 
ample seating capacit.v, and was dedicated in 1895. 

About 1843 a Methodist church was organized at Gilead, though serv- 
ices had been held at the homes of James Fiers and Alfred Dowd some 
seven or eight years before that date. Among the first members were 
Dr. E. H. Sutton, Nelson Hawley, Charles Cleland. Sullivan "Waite, 
Lorenzo Dowd, Alfred Dowd and their wives, Mary Dowd, Chauncey 
"Welton and Louisa "Welton. Alfred Dowd was the first class leader. 
One of the first preachers was a man named Bennett and Arentis Dowd 
preached to the congregation in the absence of a regular minister. 
Shortly after the church society was organized a house of worship was 
erected. It was a log structure, which served the congregation until 
1867, when it w-as torn down and a neat frame house was erected on 
the site. 

"What is known as the Olive Branch ]\Iethodist church, in Perry 
towaiship, was founded about 1843 and for several years was one of the 
strongest church societies in that part of the county. Death and 
removal of members so weakened the congregation that the organization 
was abandoned a few years after the close of the Civil war. 

Meetings were held at the homes of settlers of the Methodist faith 
in the vicinity of Converse as early as 1842. The town of Xenia (now 
Converse) was laid out in the spring of 1849 and in 1855 the Methodist 
congregation, which had been organized some years before, erected a 
neat frame house on ^Vabash street, at a cost of some $600. This build- 
ing answered all the needs of the society for about thirt.y years, when 
the growth of the congregation necessitated the erection of a new one. 
The old house was removed and in its place was built a handsome brick 


edifice, 50 by 59 feet in size, at a cost of $7,000. Among the early 
members of this eongregation were Joseph and John Powell, Jesse and 
Shadracb Elliott and their families and Louisa Kittiliall. Revs. Bow- 
man ai](l Bi'adshaw \v(>rc two of the early preachers and the first pastor 
in Ihf new building in 1886 was Rev. George S. V. Howard. The Con- 
vei'sf eliureb is in a jjrospcrous condition and, next to Pern, is one of 
the strongest jMethodist societies in the county. 

The Methodist church a1 Bunker Hill was organized in 1846, with 
David and Malinda Ilocknian. John and Eliza Townsend and 
John and Eliza Barnes as the leading members. The first meet- 
ing was held in a little log bouse that stood on the farm of 
John N. Huft'man, a ministei' named Davis conducting the serv- 
ices, and it was through his efforts that the church was organized. 
A few months later Lewis N. Snodderlj-, A. C. Lamborn, Jacob Coucher, 
James Dabney. Andrew Ounningbani and their wives. Benjamin Fish, 
Mrs. Moses Larimei' and a few others united with the church. With 
this added strength the members began to talk of erecting a church, but 
the first house of wor.sbip was not dedicated until 1855. It stood south 
of the main part of the town, not far from the Deer Creek township line, 
and was known as the "Railroad Chapel." Here the congregation con- 
tinued to hold meetings unlil the erection of the present brick church 
at the corner of Elm and Broadway streets, which edifice was dedicated 
in 1870, with Rev. (Jeorge Havens as pastor. Since that time the 
church has enjoyed a reasonable degree of prosperity and it is one of 
the leading religious societies in the southern part of the county. 

Calvary Methodist Episcopal church, the first to be organized in 
Erie township, was founded in the summer of 1846. The little class 
established at that time consisted of Daniel .Mendenhall, Frederick White 
and Alfred Miller and their wives, and perhaps one or two others. A 
minister named Donald.son was the first to hold services there, the 
im-ftings being held at the house of Daniel Mendenhall until about 1848, 
when a log house was built on the farm of Mr. Mendenhall. In 1865 
a frame church was erected on the same site. It was 35 by 50 feet 
in size and cost about $1,600. Twenty j'ears after the erection of this 
building the congi-egation numbered about seventy members, but in 
recent years the membership has lost by deaths and removals until the 
church no longer wields tiic influence it did in the early years of its 

A Methodist society was organized at the village of Miami — or 
rather where the village of Miami now stands — in 1846, by Rev. James 
Ricketts. The village was laid out in 1849 and a few years later a neat 
frame house of worship was erected and the church is still kept up, 
though its membership is not as strong as in former years. 


Ebenezer ^Methodist church, located in tlie northeastern corner of 
Union township, has long been prominent. In 18-47 Daniel Lockwood 
and wife, their two daughters, Elizabeth and Robert Bain. ]Mrs. Mary 
Carlyle. William Hiteshew and his wife, Sarah D. Hiteshew. banded 
themselves together to worship after the Methodist faith. A history 
of this organization has been written by J. X. Baldwaiu, but it exists 
only in manuscript form. The members first met in a school house near 
the site of the present Ebenezer church. Three houses of worship have 
been erected. One of these was dedicated in 1859 by Rev. A. S. Larkin. 
Another house was built in 1900 — at it was dedicated in that year 
and was probably completed at that time. Mr. Baldwin's history states 
that the second church was dedicated by Rev. N. D. Shackelford and 
the third by Rev. H. W. Bennett, though there appears to be some con- 
fusion as to which was the second church and which the third, as he 
gives an account of the erection of only two. One building burned in 
1899. The first pastors were Revs. George Guild and R. A. Xewton, of 
the Rochester circuit. In February, 1913, the church had .just experi- 
enced a successful revival and a notable increase in membership. 

About 18-47 or 1848 Methodist ministers visited Clay township and 
held services at the house of ;\Iorris Little. A little later a society was 
organized and in 1854 a frame house of worship was erected at Waupe- 
.coug. the first in Clay township. After a fairly successful career of 
about thirty years the congregation dwindled to such a degree that 
meetings were discontinued and the .old church was torn down. About 
1880 Rev. John Evans visited Waupecong, revived the interest of the 
few menbers of the Methodist church living there, reorganized the 
church and a neat brick building was erected, at a cost of about $1,800. 
Since then the Methodist church of Waupecong has enjoyed a fair 
degree of prosperity. 

About the time the first Methodist church was organized at ^Vaupe- 
cong members of that denomination formed a society in Harrison town- 
ship and soon afterward erected a small frame church on the fann of 
Henry PoweU, near the Clay township line. This became known in time 
as the McGrawsville Methodist church. In this connection it is worthy 
of note that in the early days camp meetings were frequently held in 
the northeast corner of Clay township, in which the churches at Waupe- 
cong and McGrawsville took a leading part. 

A class was organized at Perrysburg in 1854, by Rev. Enoch Way- 
mire, though meetings had been held in that neighborhood more than 
ten years before that date. About twenty members constituted the class, 
but no house of worship was erected until 1865, the services up to that 
time having been held in the Presbyterian church. When the society 


ilid Iniild it ercc-ted our of the finest and tiest appointed ehurches in the 
county, at a cost of al)out •+2.300. This ehurc-h is still in existence, tlioufih 
it is not so strong in membership as iu former years. 

The Methodist church at Five Corners was organized a few years 
before the beginning of the Civil war and in 1860 a frame house of wor- 
ship was erected. It flourished for a time, but twenty-five years after 
it was established the membership was only about twenty. 

Services were held by ^Methodist mis.sionaries iu Butler township as 
early as 1841, but no regular organization was effected until some years 
later. Then a society was formed at Santa Fe, where a neat frame house 
of worship was erected in 1860. Like many of the churches in the small 
towns, this congregation has never been very strong, but no doubt the 
members derive as much real fellowship from the association as they 
would if they lielonged to some larger and wealthier church. 

Soon after the village of Birmingham was laid out in 1868 a -Meth- 
odist class was formed there and meetings were held for a time in the 
public school house. Rev. J. J. Cooper, of the Perrysburg circuit, act- 
ing as pastor. "With the decline of the village the church also declined 
and most of the members united with other congregations. 

The Pleasant Hill I\Iethodist society, about four Tuiles northeast of 
Macy and not far from the old village of Hooversburg, was formed at 
an early date, the Powells, Bennetts, Carpenters and some others con- 
stituting the mcnilKn-ship. A log house of worship was erected on the 
farm of William Uukes some time in the '60s and meetings were held 
there regularly for some time. Some ten years later a frame house was 
erected one and a half mil(>s northwest of the old church. This has' 
always been a successful organization and at the close of the year 1913 
the congregation was planning to build a new and more elaborate house 
of worship. The charge belongs to the Gilead circuit. 

Rev. R. J. Parrott organized a Methodist church at Denver in 1873, 
with a membership of about forty, most of whom had formerly belonged 
to the churches at Chili and Mexico. Before the close of that year a 
handsome frame building, 36 by 50 feet, was eompleted at a cost of 
$1,500. This is one of the youngest Methodist churches in Miami county. 
A colored Methodist church was organized in Peru in the early '70s 
and the first meetings were held in the engine house by Polder Patterson. 
In 1874 a small brick church was erected at the corner of Third and 
Tippecanoe streets and Rev. Robert Jeifries was installed as pastor. 
It soon became evident that the society was unable to support a resi- 
dent pastor and for some time ministers from Logansport or Kokomo 
visited the congregation at intervals. Aliout 1893 Rev. Zaeliariah 
Roberts became pastor, tiut .served only a short time. The congregation 


was never very strong and at the beginning of the present century it 
consisted of less than a dozen members. It now has a regular pastor 
and is enjoying a fair degree of prosperity. 

At Gary a society of "Wesleyan Methodists was formed at a compara- 
tively early date. An undenominational church, similar in doctrine, 
had its outgrowth in meetings held in a tent near the village of ]\Iiarai 
in 1889 by Rev. J. F. Shutters. Early the following year a society was 
organized and a frame house of worship erected in the village at a 
cost of about $1,200. It is known as the ^lission church. There are 
two Wesleyan churches in Peru — one on old Flax hill in the north- 
western part of the city and one in North Peru. They were established 
about twenty-five years ago. Tlie same pastor serves both chTirehes, 
each of which has a substantial frame structure. 

An old atlas of iliami county shows a ^Methodist church on the north 
side of Section 11, in Peru township, on the road to Chili, another in 
the northeast part of Allen township, about a mile and a half from 
Deedsville. and a third on the northwest ijuarter of Section 4, in Wash- 
ington township, about a mile and a half from the county infirmary, 
but the writer has been unable to learn anytliing of their history. 

Probably the youngest Methodist Episcopal church in iliami county 
is the one at Aniboy. It has been organized but a few years, but has 
been prosi)erous from the beginning. In 1913 a neat and substantial 
brick house of worship was commenced and was finished early in the 
following year, the dedication of the building being celebrated on March 
15, 1914. 

The Presbyterians 

On Thursday, November 26, 1835, thirteen members of this denom- 
ination assembled at the residence of William N. Hood, in Peru, for 
the purpose of organizing a church. The meeting was presided over by 
Rev. Samuel Newbury. The original thirteen charter members of tlie 
First Presbyterian church of Peru were : Stewart and Margaret Forgy, 
O. P. Jennison and wife. Cornelius Vauriper. Mrs. A. M. Vauriper, Re- 
becca Williamson, Margaret Sergeant, Sophia C. Hood, Mary Ann New- 
bury, ^liss Caroline Nesbit, ]Miss Emily Sergeant and Frederick W. 
Sergeant. For a time the meetings were held at the house of Mr. 
Hood. Then Mr. Newbury piirchased a lot upon which stood a double 
log cabin, which was thrown into one room and fitted up with seats. 
This house stood on West Fifth street. Later the services were held 
in the cabin erected by William Smith and used for the first school 
taught in Peru. On January 28. 1836, was elected the first board of 
trustees, consisting of William N. Hood, 0. P. Jennison and Stewart 


Porsy. At tlio same time F. A. Sergeant was chospii cli'i'k. Sitownrt 
Forsry had been elected and ordained inlinET elder at the time the society 
was organized. 

The proprietors of the town of I'eru. William X. Hood. Richard T>. 
Britton and Jesse Williams, presented the congregation with a lot on 
West Third street and in tlie s]>ring of 1S3G a fraiiir' lionse was com- 
menced by .John W. Timberlake and Henry Robinson. It was occupied 
about the beginning of the year 18.37 and was the first Protestant church 
erected in ]\Iiami county. A Sunday school was organized by Mr. New- 
bury and at the end of two years from the organization of the church 
the congregation numbered twenty-four members. Rev. Asa Johnson 
became pastor in October, 1837, and continued with the chui-ch until 
1848, when he was succeeded by Rev. Milton Starr. Rev. F. S. McCabe 
began his ministry in Pern in July. 1852. and continued as pastor for 
nearly fifteen years. During his administration a new church was 
erected. It was dedicated on July 4, 1858, and served the congregation 
until the ei-ection of the pi-esciit building at the northwest corner of 
Main and Cass streets, at a cost of $65,000. 

The pastors from 1868 to 1894 were Revs. Everett Thomson, Henry 
L. Brown. Samuel Wyckoff, J. B. Parmelee, Matthew M. Whitford. 
Leon P. Marshall and Solomon C. Dickey. On January 21, 1894, Rev. 
Harrv Xyce began liis labors as pastor and has since been in charge. 
Under liis ministr.v tlie present magnificent stone edifice at the corner of 
IMain and Cass .streets has been erected. The corner-stone of this building 
was laid with appropriate ceremonies on May 1, 1905. At that time 
James H. Fetter prepared and read a history of the society, from which 
many of the facts in this sketch have been gleaned. On June 1, 1905, 
the old church building on West Third, near Broadway, was sold to 
Harry F. Ma.sters and C. P. Eckstein for $10,000. This building was 
used as a court-house while the present court-house was being built. It 
is now used as a laundry. 

The Second Presbyterian church in Peru, a society of the Old School, 
was in existence for several years. This congi-egation erected a brick 
house of worship at the southwest corner of Main and Miami streets, 
which was used until the First and Second Presbyterian churches were 
amalgamated about 1870 after which the edifice was used by the Bapi- 
tists, Methodists and Congregationalists and is now owned and occupied 
by the Christian church. 

In 1846 Revs. A. Johnson and 0. V. Lemon, two Presbyterian min- 
isters, visited Gilead and organized a church. Two years later a frame 
house of worship was erected and for several years services were held 
regularly, though the congregation was never strong numerically. The 

Vol. 1—28 


removal of some of the most active member so weakened the society that 
the church was abaudoned in 1868, the old house of worship being used 
as a store room for mauy years after that time. 

About the year 1849 Rev. Andrew McClelland began holding meet- 
ings at Perrysburg, in the school bouse and at the home of Hamilton 
Simonton. These meetings resulted in the formation of a Presbyterian 
church with about eighteen or twenty members, among whom were 
several members of the Simonton family, John Leach, John Kiplinger 
and his wife and John MeConahy and wife. A frame church was com- 
menced in 1850, but it was not completed until about four years later. 
Services were held in it. however, before it was finished, the first ser- 
mon preached in the building being on the occasion of the funeral of 
Hamilton Simonton in Augiust. 1852. For several years the congrega- 
tion enjoyed a reasonable degree of prosperity, but after a time the 
membership decreased to about a dozen, when meetings were held at 
irregular intervals and were finally discontinued altogether. 

Rev. F. S. ilcCabe, pastor of the Presbyterian church at Peru, was 
the first minister of that faith to preach in Butler township. After 
holding services for some time in a school house in the northwestern 
part of the township, not far from the IMississinewa river, a society was 
organized and in 1863 a church building was commenced on land 
donated by George McKinstry. It was not completed until the follow- 
ing year and was dedicated on September 25, 1864, a minister named 
Carnahan preaching tlie dedicatory sermon. This church is known as 
New Hope church. 

A Presbyterian church known as ]\Iount Hope was organized in 
Washington township shortly after the Civil war and a house of wor- 
ship was erected on what was known as the White farm. For some time 
the society was fairly prosperous, but on account of deaths and removals 
it was disbanded, the few members left uniting with the church at Peru 
or other convenient places. 

Rev. William Armstrong, a missionary of the Muncie presbytery, 
organized the Presbyterian church at Converse on November 12, 1870, 
with the following members: J. M. Darby, J. K. Darby, Catharine S. 
and Flora Darby, J. A. and Cordelia Douglass, A. D. Kimball, Carrie 
D. Murray, Elizalieth Jones, A. B. Kimball, N. Dangerfield, F. :\I. 
Shinn, Elizabeth Piatt, David Coppock, Letelia Summers, James Parker, 
Lydia J. and Henrietta S. Kimball, J. M. Wright and wife, J. A. 
Phelps, Eunice Hand, A. P. Stout, M. P. Keasby, Emma A. Zeek and 
Jackson Saxon. Services were held for several years in the United 
Brethren or Christian churches, but in 1893 a modest frame building 
was erected at the corner of ilarion and Washington streets. With 
some alterations this house is still the home of the congregation. 

IIlSTnl;^■ ()!•' MIAMI corXTV 355 

'riii: P>A1'TISTS 

I'i'olialily llic lii'st services lii'lil liy mriiiln'r.s of tliis (iriKiiuiiiation in 
Jliaiiii cDiiiity wn-r tluisi' coiKlucti'd by Rev. George Vopo at the house 
of (icorcrc Xcecc. in Allen to\viishi|). in 1838. Xo society was formed 
at lliat time. Ijiit in Deeenitiei-. ls:!!l. a few persons who believed in the 
doctrines of tlie Baptist church nu't at llie caliin of William Cool, and 
took tile preliminary stejis toward the organization of a chni'ch society. 
^Ieetin<rs were held at the homes of the mcinlici's until the following 
Marcli. when the Weesau Ci'eek liai)tist clnirc'h was foi'uicd with the 
following memhei-s: AVilliam. Christopher and .luda Cool, Sallie Hall, 
Charles Cole. Maiw lioss, E/.ra (iriffitli and wife. Leonard and Powell 
Cool. In -Ful.N, 1S41, llie congr<'gation .joined with others of the same 
faith in forming the Thiiitinglon association. The lirst house of worship 
was huilt eai'ly in the year 1S.')1, on land donated hy William Cool. In 
1853 this ehni'ch became the head of ihe Weesau Creek association and in 
May, 1856, the fii'st Sunday school was oi'ganized. Two of the original 
menil)ers of this church — William and I.eoiuird Cool — were ordained to 
the ministry in .Ma.v. IH.")."). In .lanuaiy, 187(), a handsome ;nid coinmodius 
brick cluirch was dedicated for the use of this church, Kev. J. White- 
side preaching the sermon on that occasion. This is the oldest Bajitist 
chui'ch in the count.v. 

In the eai-ly '4()s TJev. John Davis, a Ba])tist nnnister, visited Ei'ie 
townsliii) and held services at the house of Salathiid Cole. A small 
societ.v was organized, but no house of worship was ever erected, services 
having been held for sevei'al yeai-s in the homes of the nieml)ei\s or at the 
('alifornia school house. After the death of some of the older members 
the survivors united with Baptist churches at other ])oin1s and the meet- 
ings were discontinued. 

The first chui'ch edilice in the town of Bunkei- Hill was erected by 
the Baptists in 1860, on a lot donated by James Myers and John Duck- 
wall. The congregation had been organized nearly twenty .vears befoi'c. 
Among the early mend)ers wci-e Daniel Striker. William and James 
MeCrary, B. II. Ilann and wifi', Joseph Frazee. Williaui I'iatt and 
wife, John Mui'i)liy and James Mays and their wives, a .Mr. Lawrenct! 
aiul perhaps a few others. Rev. Samuel Dewese was one of the first 
preachers and the services were held at his house until the spring of 
184-8, when a log church was erected about a mile west of Bunker Hill. 
The present building is one of the largest in the town, having a seating ' 
capacity of about 500. 

In the western part of Deer Ci'eek township, on the creek of that 
name and not far from the county line, was once a little Baptist 


churc-h tliat was organized about 1849 by Elder "Walters, who was the 
first pastor. At first there were but five members, but thirty years later 
the membership had increased to about 100. At that time it was one of 
the strono:est church societies in the county, outside of the city of Peru. 
Then a decline began and in 1893 the congregation disbanded, the mem- 
bers taking letters and iiniting with the churches at Bunker Hill, Galves- 
ton or elsewhere. 

The Chili Baptist church had its beginning about 1856, though serv- 
ices had been held in the vicinity by Baptist ministers for several years 
previous to that time. "WTien the society was first organized the mem- 
bership was small and it was deemed advisable not to undertake the 
erection of house of worship. Meetings were therefore held in the 
school house at Chili and another near that town until 1877, when the 
congregation had grown to such an extent as to render a church build- 
ing of some kind a necessity. Consequently a lot was purchased and a 
handsome frame building 36 by 60 feet was dedicated early in 1878. 
This building, which cost about •i<2,000, stands in the western part of the 
town and is still used by the congregation. 

A few Baptists who were among the early settlers of Periy township 
began holding meetings at their homes about 1850 and in 1858 a sub- 
stantial frame house of worship was erected on Section 15, near the old 
village of Niconza. This was known as the Nicouza Baptist church. It 
enjoyed a fair degi-ee of prosperity for several years, but with the death 
of the older members and the removal of others the congregation became 
so weakened that it lost much of its former prestige and power. Stephens' 
History of Miami county (page 260) says a Baptist church was built at 
Gilead in 1858, but this statement probably refers to the Niconza church 
and it may be that the location of the church was changed to Gilead at 
a later date. The published accounts of this society are confusing. 

The Mexico Baptist church was organized at the house of George 
Hutchinson, near the village, June 5, 1861, most of the members having 
formerly been affiliated with the Weesau Creek congregation. A list 
of the first members shows the names of John, Elizabeth and Louis A. 
Shadinger, Jacob Wilkinson, Rebecca and Lucy L. Straj^er. George and 
Elizabeth Ulch, David and Catherine Sloppy, William and Eliza Cun- 
ningham, George and Nancy E. Hutchinson, Mary Wilkinson, Fanny 
Sloppy, Nancy Burnett, Jesse and j\Iary Copeland, A. W. Hedges and 
Sophia House. Meetings were held in the Methodist church for about 
two years, when a comfortable frame house of worship was erected in 
the northwest part of the to\vu. Revs. J. M. Maxwell. J. B. Allen and 
J. Barrett were among the early pastors. 

On July 18, 1866, a number of Baptists met together in Peru for 

lllSTOi;^ (iK MlA.Ml CorXTV 357 

the |)iii|i(ise of oi'gaiii/.iiifr a cliurcli. Tliose present at the meeting were 
E. H. Shirk. IT. J. Shirk. W. H. Waters, F. M. Bacon. Moses Mercer, 
George Geves and David DeLawter and their wives. Rev. A. Virgil, who 
was also at the meeting, was ehosen pastor. At another meeting on Sep- 
temhcr 11. 1866, the organization was perfected and on October 3d a 
number of pastors of churches in northern Indiana met in council and 
formally recognized the First Baptist Church of Peru as an established 
church. In April, 1868. 11. J. Shirk, F. Tlackley and George A. Crowell 
were appointed a Iniilding committee to take charge of the erection of 
a house of worship. The lot at the southeast corner of Slain and Wabash 
streets was .secured and a brick building was commenced. By the close 
of the year the lecture room was i)ractically tinished, and it was occupied 
for the first time by the congregation on New Year's da.v, 1869. At 
that time Rev. John Trenueman was pastor. He was succeeded in July, 
1869, by Rev. F. 1). Bland, under whose charge the building was finished 
and dedicated on January 2, 1870. Rev. George K. Leonard was pastor 
from 1871 to 1882 and under his ministrations the congregation and Sun- 
day school both grew in membership and attendance. The increase con- 
tinued uiidfi- tlie leadership of Rev. B. F. Gavins, who became pastor in 
March, 1882, and in a few years it became evident that the old church 
would have to be enlarged or a new one erected to accommodate the 
growing membership. A new building was the decision of the members 
and in 1894 the old church that had served for more than a quarter of 
a century was torn down. The foiuidation of the new building was laid 
ill Ihr lail of that year and liie corner-stone placed in position with 
appropi'iate ceremonies. In 1895 the Iniilding, a handsome stone struc- 
ture with red tile roof, was completed, the dedication taking place on 
Sunday, November 24th. It is one of the finest church edifices in north- 
ern Indiana and cost about $40,000. Since the erection of the new 
church the pastors have been H. P. Klyver, H. 0. Hellings and Am- 
brose M. Bailey. 

The Oakdale branch of the Fii-st Baptist church was established in 
July, 1905. A neat, commodious building was erected in the summer of 
1906 at the southwest corner of Chili and Adams avenues. An active 
Sunday school has been maintained continuously since, having many 
bright and energetic young people among its efficient workers. In Octo- 
ber, 1913, it was organized as a branch of the First church and for the 
first time arrangements were made for regular series. Rev. Lee Fisher 
assuming the active duties of the field. 

The Denver Baptist church was organized in April, 1886, by Rev. 
E. C. Robbiiis, who was the first pastor. Sixteen charter members were 
enrolled at the time of the organization and nine more soon afterward 


united with the church. This faithful twenty-five immediately took the 
necessary steps toward the erection of a church building and in 1887 a 
neat frame house of worship, located upon the rising ground in the 
northern part of the town was dedicated. Tt is thirty-six liy sixty feet in 
size and cost ahout $2,500. 

On the map of Miami county in the old atlas already referred to, 
there is a ilissionary Baptist church shown on the southern part of Sec- 
tion 7. in Union township, about three and a half miles northwest of 
Denver and just west of Weesau creek, but no one has been found who 
can give any account of its organization. 


There are several branches of the German Ba]>tist denomination and no 
especial effort has been made herein to differentiate very closely in 
ifying them, accepting for the most part of classification in Stephens' 
History of Miami County. The name "Dunkard" never was an official 
name of this denomination. It is only a nick-name and is said to allude 
to an abundance of water, it being a corruption of the German word 
■ ' dunker, ' ' for dipper. Of the three branches one calls itself the German 
Baptists, one the Church of the Brethren, and the other the Progressive 
Brethren. The church in Peiii is of the second above named branch, and 
so are the two churches in Mexico. Rev. Mr. Fisher, the pastor of the 
church in Peru, claims that the Church of the Brethren is the direct 
descendant of the old German Baptists, while the present German Bap- 
tists and Pi'ogressive Brethren are branches of the parent stock. How- 
ever, as above stated, the historian is not sufficiently familiar with the 
church history to attempt a definite classification. 

Several societies of this denomination have been organized in Miami 
county. Doubtless the first was that organized at ilexico about 18:17. 
Elder Jacob Brower, a Dunkard preacher, held services at the house 
of Peter Fisher before that date, and for several years after the formal 
organization of a church meetings were held at the homes of the members 
or in the school houses. In the summer season they worshiped in the 
groves — "God's first temples." In 1861 a brick church, fort.v-four by 
fifty feet, with^i seating capacity of about five hundred was built a short 
distance north of Mexico. Here the Browers, Fishers, Fetrows. Metzkers, 
Barnharts and other pioneer families of Jefferson township, who were 
■ adherents of the German Baptist faith, met regularly for years and built 
up a strong congregation. An offshoot of this church established 
another society and built a house of worship on Section 27, about half 
a mile north of the station of Courter and ,iust east of the Lake Erie 


& Western RailroMil. Another Diinkard congregation, known as the "old 
order," foiinded a ehni'i-h in .Tetl'erson township at aii early date. 

A Dnnkard elmreh was established in the northwest corner of Rich- 
land townshij) many years ago, but nothing of its history can be ascer- 
tained, further than that the memliers huilt a house of worshi]) on Sec- 
tion 3, a .short distance east of the old village of Wooleytown. What 
is known as the "Enterprise" Dnnkard church in Perry township, on 
the road leading east from Birmingham, has been in existence for many 
years. The members of this denouiination living in the vicinity of Santa 
Fe held services in the school house there some years before the begin- 
ning of the Civil war. About 1866 a Oerman Baptist eliurch was organ- 
ized in the southern part of Washington township. The early meetings 
were held in barns, residences or school houses, but after a year or so a 
frame liouse of worship fort.v-five b.v seventy feet was erected on the plat 
or ground donated by William Biggs on Section 34, not far from Pipe 
creek. The membership of this congregation is made up of substantial 
farmers and their families. 

In the northern part of Clay township a society of Progressive 
Dunkards was organized a few years after the church in Washington 
townshi]) and a comfortable frame house of worship was erected a little 
later on the farm of Oliver Worll. 

The Mennonites 

This denomination was first founded in Switzerland in 1525, but 
took its name from ilenno Simons, a leader in Holland. Since its origin 
it has become divided into tweh'e branches, the principal ones of which 
ai-e the ilciHionites. the Amish (so-called from Jacob Amen), the Old 
Amish, the Apostolic Mennonites and the Mennonite Brethren. The 
church was introduced in America in 1683, when William Penn induced 
some Mennonites to settle in Pennsylvania. 

Xcar Cary, in the southeastern part of Harrison township, an Amish 
church was organized about 1849. IMcmbei's of this denomination settled 
in that localit.v at an early day, most of them coming fi'om Ohio. Al)0Ut 
1855 a division occurred, not .so much on (luestions of doctrine as a 
difference of opinion regarding modern practices. The "old order" 
established a new church near the How-ard county line, near the line 
belween Clay and Ilari'ison townships. This is now known as the 
Mennonite church. The .\niish have no liouse of worshij). but holil meet- 
ings at the homes of the nu-mbers. All the various branches of the 
Mcnnointes ai'e iioled foi' theii- strict discipline, industry and i)lain 
manner of living. 


Christians ob Disciples 

The Christian ohui-L'h at Miami, the first to be established in the 
couuty, was the outgrowth of meetings held at the house of Austin Her- 
rell and in the school houses, Revs. George Smith, Daniel Fliun and a 
minister named Hansberry having been among the first preachers of this 
faith to hold services in that part of the county. The society was organ- 
ized about 1848 and a few years later a substantial house of worship was 
erected in the village of Sliami. 

In 1856 a Christian church was erected in the village of Peoria, the 
first house of worship in the place. The organization was never very 
strong and about 1868 or 1869 the members abandoned the church at 
Peoria, united with others of the same belief and built a new frame 
church in the southeastern part of Butler township. This congregation 
has never prospered and meetings are held only at irregular intervals. 

Elder Wayman came into Pipe Creek township in 1865 and held 
meetings in a school house near Pipe creek, about three miles northwest 
of Bunker Hill. The result of his labors was the organization of Pleasant 
Hill Christian church, with about fifteen membere, among whom were 
the Brandts, the Markens, the Meudenhalls, N. D. and M. E. Nichols, 
Jane Reed and Harriet Hopper. Peter Rife and Granville Mendeuhall 
were the first deacons. In 1875 a neat frame church was built on land 
donated by Jacob Brant, on Section 14. Although the congregation 
has never been large, harmony has prevailed among them and the church 
is one of the established institutions of the county. 

The Converse Christian church was organized in 1868 by Rev. Henry 
Olinger. For a time meetings were held in the school house or at private 
dwellings, but in 1872 a lot in the eastern part of the town was pur- 
chased and a frame church was erected thereon. The pastor at that 
time was Rev. W. V. Trowbridge. In 1877 the frame church was burned 
and a new brick building, thirty-six by fifty feet was erected upon the 
site, at a cost of about $4,000. This building was the home of the con- 
gregation for a little more than thirty years, when it was replaced by the 
present stately structure, which cost about $13,000. In connection with 
the church is a strong Sunday school and it is no disparagement to other 
religious societies to say that the Christian church of Converse is one 
of the most prosperous in the couuty. 

The Christian church at Macy was organized about 1868 by Rev. 
Aaron Walker. Grimes Horton, Lyman Hatch and Peter Carvey were 
the first elders. The first meetings were held in a school house that was 
afterward converted into a residence. In 1873 a brick chapel was erected 
and it is still owned by the congregation. The corner-stone of a new 


buihliiiL'' was hiid in November, li)ll{, Imt the ctlificc was not coiiijjleted 
at the close of that year. The cost of this building, ineliiiliiiir the lui-iiish- 
ings, will be in excess of $12,000. It is a haiidsoiiie brick structure, cen- 
trally located, and will seat about 800 people. 

In January, 1893, Elder T. J. Legg, state Sunday school evangelist 
of the Christian church, organized a Sunday school in Peru. The first 
meeting was held in the basenu'Ut of the Odd Fellows' building on East 
Main street on Januai-y 15th. Later in the year the state missionary 
board sent Rev. Charles M. Fillmore to assist in the organization of a 
church. After holding revival services for about five weeks, Mr. Fillmore 
succeeded in organizing a congregation, including a number of Peru's 
representative people. Not long afterward the old Congregational church 
at the southwest corner of Jlain and Miami streets was purchased and 
refitted as a house of worship. This building was dedicated on October 
15, 1894, as a Christian church. Rev. L. L. Carpenter, of Wabash, con- 
ducting the services. It was a great satisfaction to the members to know 
that the new church started upon its career out of debt. Since the organ- 
ization services have been regularly held and the congregation is in a 
reasonably prosperous condition. The building occupied l)y this society 
has had a varied history. It was built and used by the Old School Pres- 
byterians for a time, after which it was used successively by the Baptists, 
the St. Paul Methodists and the Congi-egationalists. When the last 
named denomination aliandoned the building it stood idle foi' a lunnber 
of years liefore it was bought and remodeled by the Disciples. 

The New^ Lights 

The New Lights, or New Light Christiaus, were represented in Erie 
township at a very early date, but no regular organization was ever 
effected. Meetings were held at the homes of some of the early settlers 
and several ineflfectual efforts were made to arouse sufficient interest 
to justify the establishment of a church. Failing in this, the meetings 
were finally discontinued. 

The first regulai- New Light church established in the (county is known 
as Eel River chapel. A history of this congregation published in the 
Peru Republican of July 15, 1910, gives the names of the charter mem- 
bers as Elijah Co.\, Jane Gallahan, Thomas and Milly Skinner, Margaret 
Reed, Fannie Branaman, Elizabeth Taylor Payne and Rebecca Stroud. 
On P^diruary 21, 1841, the little congregation adopted the name of 
"Christian Salem Church." In the fall of 1843 a frame house of wor- 
ship was built on the farm of Elijah Cox, near the Eel river, at a cost 
of $600, and the congregation afterward became known as the Eel River 


chnn-li. At a nipeting: held on Februar.y 21, 1881, exactly forty years 
after the cliiirch was first organized, steps were taken to build a brick 
chapel "to be controlled by the Christian denomination."' The building 
was completed and dedicated early the following year. 

The ]\Iount Zion New Light church, about two miles west of Bennett's 
Switch, was organized in the late '60s and George Wininger presented 
the congregation with a house of worship. This church is still in exist- 
ence and though not strong numerically is in a fairly prosperous con- 

The United Brethren 

The first church of the United Brethren in Miami county, of which 
there is any authentic record, was formed in Erie township, at the house 
of Samuel Philabaum, in 1849. Among the early members were Samuel 
Philabaum and wife, Michael Dice and wife, David Repp and wife, David 
Zimmerman and wife and a Mrs. Barnett. In 1850 a hewed log house 
of worship was erected on the farm of Mr. Philabaum and subsequently 
a nice frame house was built upon the same site, at a cost of about !f!l,700. 
A Sunday school is conducted in connection with the church. 

In 1856 Rev. Cyrus Smith visited Xenia (Converse) and organized 
a United Brethren class, consisting of Seth and Mary Summers, Zacha- 
riah Clevinger and wife, Thomas and Hannah Darby, Charles Branam 
and Mary A. Clevinger. Meetings were at first held at the house of Mr. 
Summers and later in the Wesleyan Methodist church. In 1859 a frame 
church was erected at a cost of about $800 and was used jointly by the 
two denominations until the Wesleyan Methodists disbanded, when the 
United Brethren came into full possession. In 1872 the building was 
enlarged and remodeled, since which time it has been known as the 
United Brethren church of Converse. 

A frame church for the use of the United Brethren was Iniilt in Wash- 
ington township in 1869, though meetings had been held at private dwell- 
ings twenty years before that time. It cost about $900, is located on 
the north side of Section 24, near Little Pipe creek, and is known as 
Crider chapel. 

The United Brethren church at North Grove, erected in 1870, is said 
to have been the first house of worship built in Harrison township. It is 
the outgi'owtli of meetings previously held by Rev. Jolm Leach at the 
homes of James Graham and John Wilson, as early as 1848. 

Mount Zion church of the United Brethren, located about two miles 
east of Bennett's Switch, was organized about 1854. After a reason- 
able successful career for several yeai's the congregation became so weak- 


fncd by ilc.iths ami removals that it (lishainlcd. The huililiiiK "as pur- 
chased l)y B. F. Zc'hriiig and removed by him and A. E. Zehring, William 
K. Green and James Coiicher to Bennett's Switch, where it is now used 
by the Methodists, to whom it was sold at cost by the men who removed 
it to the village. 

A church of the Tnited Brethren was established at Waupecong 
some time in the "cSOs with a small meml)ership, but its histoi-y cannot be 
learned. The church at Maey was established in 1892 and soon after- 
ward erected a neat frame building in the northern part of the town. 
This congregation is in a reasonably j)rosperous condition, although not 
sti-ong in numbers. 

A young, and i)robal)ly the strongest, society of Unit(ul Brethren 
in the county is the one at Peru. It was organized aljout the beginning 
of the present century. A lot at the corner of Main and Clay street was 
soon afterward purchased and on June 2, 1901, tlie corner-stone of 
the building was laid bj' Rev. W. M. Weekley, of Dayton, Ohio, chairman 
of the church erection section of the denominational work. The box 
deposited in the corner-stone contained copies of the Peru newspapers, 
religious publications, etc. When completed the cost of the building was 
about $10,000. 

Some five or six years ago a few United Brethren began holding meet- 
ings at their homes at Denver. As their numbers increased they met in 
one of the school rooms or in a public hall for a few months, when a 
congregation was regularly organized and steps taken to erect a church. 
The lot at the corner of Pyson street and Washington avenue was pur- 
chased and in the summer of 1910 a neat frame church was erected 
tliereon, where regular services have since been held. 

The Friends or Quakers 

Just before the gi'eat land sale in 1847 a few Quaker families .settled 
in the southeastern part of the county and not long after their coming 
they organized w'hat is now the Amboy Friends' church. Among the 
original members were John Pearson, Nathan Arnold, William and Eli 
Overman and their families, Joshua Canaday, Hiram Pearsoii, Mordecai 
Painter, Michael and Parker Hollingsworth, Daviil Reynolds and Cal- 
vin Edgerton. The first house of worship was a deserted dwelling, but 
in a short time a log church was erected .just north of the present town 
of Amboy. Meetings were held in it until 1865, when a large frame 
house was liuilt in its place. Re\'. Zimri Hockett was one of the first 

Another society of Friends was organized in the extreme southea.steru 
<'ornci- of Jackson towiishi]) and theii- house of worship was built about 


lialf a mile north of wheiv Converse now stands. There was also a Friends 
c4mrch established in the southeastern part of Harrison township at a 
comparatively early date. This denomination has never spread over 
the county like some of the others. At the beginning of the present 
century there were three Friends churches in the county, with a total 
membership of over 500. all located in Jackson township, whicli is some- 
times called the "Quaker neighborhood." 

The Episcopal Church 

There is but one society of the Protestant Episcopal church in Jliami 
county and that is located in the city of Peru. On May 2, 184-3. a few per- 
sons who lielieved in the doctrines and form of worship of the Episcopal 
church met for the purpose of organizing a parish. Among these were 
M. W. Seely, Albert Cole. James 'SI. DeFrees, John S. Twells. James 
Douglas, George L. Dart, E. P. Loveland, H. M. and John W. Stone, 
D. B. Tyler, H. J. Reese, Jonathan W. Smith and 0. M. Clark, with 
respective families. Under the sanction of the Rt. Rev. Jackson Kemjjer, 
at that time bisliop of the Northwest, and with the assistance of Rev. 
H. L. Laird, an Episcopal minister of Logansport, the parish was organ- 
ized and designated as St. James. Bishop Kemper visited Peru the 
following July and held services, at which time three additional mem- 
bers were confirmed. 

At a meeting held at the office of il. W. Seely, in Peru. April 8, 
1844, Henry J. Rees and D. W. Tyler were elected wardens, James M. 
DeFrees, Merritt W. Seely and John W. Stone, vestrymen. ^Messrs. 
Seely and Rees were appointed a committee to draft a code of by-laws 
for the government of the parish. They made their report to a parish 
meeting on June 20, 1844, when the by-laws were adopted. In the early 
spring of 1846, Rev. Fortune C. Brown, of New York, was eaUed as rector 
and remained in charge of the parish for about eighteen months. After 
his departure Henry J. Rees conducted services as laj' reader for about 
two years, when he left Peru and the services were discontinued, except 
when the parish was occasionally visited by Bishop Upfold. In the 
winter of 1869 regular services were held for a short time by Rev. Thomas 
Taylor, of Delphi, and the following spring Rw. E. J. Purely, of Logans- 
port held services a few times and awakened anew the energies of the 

On the evening of May 26, 1870, a meeting was held in the second 
story of a building at the northwest corner of Main and Broadway 
streets, at which time the parish was reorganized and the name of Trinity 
Episcopal church was adopted. A. C. Fiske and Milon P. Smith were 


elected wardens and C. E. Ruthei-rord. xcstryTiian. \ir\-. W. X. Dmiiiani 
was called as rector on July 1, 1870. and meetings were held regularly 
in a room over Shirk & Miller's store, where the First National bank 
is now located. Befoiv the close of the year a lot at the northeast corner 
of Main and IMianii streets was purchased and on September 19, 1871, 
the corner-stone of the first Episcopal church in IMiami county was laid 
under the direction of Bishop Talbott. Rev. IMr. Rolierts, of Indianapolis, 
delivering the sermon. 

The church erected then served as the home of the congregation for 
more than fort.v .years. On June 3. 1918, the corner-stone of the new 
church was laid according to the Episcopal ritual, Bishop John ITazen 
White, of South Bend, officiating. An incident that occurred in con- 
neetion with this ceremon.y was something out of the ordinar.v. When 
Bishop White visited Garv, some time before, for the purpose of laying 
the coi-ner-stone of an Episcopal church, the stone masons ob.jected to 
his using the trowel because he was not a member of their union. The 
bishop begged to be permitted to proceed, saying that he would make it 
all right for the next time. Consefjuentl.v, he .ioined the stone masons' 
union and when he came to Peru he carried his membership card, but 
no ob.iection was offered to his officiating or using the trowel. The eon- 
tract cost of the new building was $20,000. It was not completed at the 
beginning of the .vear 1914. The walls are of oriental velour tirick. laid 
with black cement, and wiim completed thr cliui'ch will br an ornament 
to the city. 

During the pastorate of Rev. Edward \V. Avei'ill. tlic gnild liall was 
erected in the rear of the churi-h. It is a substantial brick structui'e and 
is still standing. 

The Lutherans 

Rev. C. Stuerken, a minister of the Evangelical l.utiieraii cliurch, 
came to Peru in 1849 and held services in a little frame school house 
on W(>st Second street. The onl.v members of the denomination in the 
town at that time were Paul Kleemann. Thomas Hetzner, L. Kolk, Charles 
Koederer. John Bazner and Adam Waltz, and a few members of their 
families. Owing to the fact that the congregation was small, Mr. 
Steurken visited it only at irregular intervals and after a time the meet- 
ings were discontiiuied entirely for about a year. He then bi'gaii his 
visits again and a church was regularly organized in 1858, with Rev. 
H. Horst as pastor. He remained but a short time, when Mr. Steurken 
returned to the congregation and in a little while a small brick building 
was erected on West Second street, near Hood, in 1861 a number of 


nuMiiliers were added to the eongregatioii and during the next decade the 
growth of the church was steady, though soniewliat slow. Early in the 
'70s a movement was started for a new house of worship. The lots at tlie 
southeast corner of Jlaiu and Fremont streets was purchased, the corner- 
stone of the new building was laid on ^lay 22, 1875, and the church was 
formally dedicated on April 2, 1876. It is a brick structure, 40 by 75 feet, 
with a tall spire, and still serves the congregation as a home. Where 
the old church stood on West Second street a handsome two-story brick 
school house was erected in 1905. 

In the year 1855 two ministers named Geisel and Uphouse, members 
of the Fulton circuit of the Indiana conference of the Evangelical 
Lutheran church, began holding services in the vicinity of Bunker Hill. 
Four years later Mr. (ieisel conducted a series of revival meetings that 
resulted in the organization of a class or society, of which Peter Walters 
was the leader. From 1861 to 1863 Rev. R. J. Trometer had charge 
of the work in that part of the cOTinty. During the next two years Rev. 
II. Fisher was the pastor of the little flock. Then came Rev. J. Kaufman, 
who in turn was succeeded by Mr. Uphouse in 1867. For a time meet- 
ings were held in the homes of the members ; then the school house west 
of the town was secured and services were held there until 1874. In that 
year a brick house of worship was erected on Elm street, in the south part 
of the town, where the congregation still has its home. 


A society of the German Evangelical Association was formed in 
Perry township, a short distanC-e east of Gilead, and in 1858 a frame 
house of worship was erected near the village, at a cost of $700. Among 
the early members were the Ault, Smith and Barnheisel families, Cor- 
nelius Barnheisel donating the land for the church site. 

At the Buffalo school house, in the northern part of Perry township, 
a society of the Reformed Lutheran church was organized in 1880, by 
Rev. E. Hershey. About a year later a small frame hoTise of worship 
was erected on land donated by Samuel King. Prior to that time a 
Lutheran society had been oi-ganized at the Greenland school house and 
held meetings there for some time. It was finally disbanded and most 
of the members united with the Buffalo congregation. 

The Evangelical church at the corner of Fifth and Water streets, in 
the city of Peru, was dedicated on January 19, 1902, Bishop Thomas 
Bowman officiating. At that meeting !f;1.500 were contributed and the 
new building was cleared of debt. This society was organized on Novem- 
ber 26, 1898, at the home of George Vanblai'icum, with seven members. 


III DercinhiT. Ilic littli' society secured the liiill over tlu' express office 
on East Third street. On Ajiril 14, ]8!)9, Rev. Kdwai'd Oliver took 
charge as pastor and from tliat time the society grew until it was strong 
enough to erect its own sanctuary at the corner of Fifth and Water 
streets, as above stated. 


So far as can be learned there has never been Init one society of this 
faith in iliami eount.v. In April, 1876, Kev. J. B. Parmelee, then pastor 
of the Presbyterian church in Peru, resigned his position and procured 
a letter of dismission from the ]iresbytery. At the same time some of the 
members of the Presbyterian church withdrew and, under the leadership 
of Mr. Parmelee, organized a Congregational church. The old church 
edifice that had been used by one of the Methodist societies, located at 
southwest corner of ]\Iain anil Miami streets, was secured by the new 
denomination and for a time the Congregationalists were fairly pros- 
perous. Then some of the membei's returned to the Pre.sliytcrian ciiiirch, 
and after the departure of j\lr. Parmelee for other fields of lal)or Kev. 
Mr. Cooper took charge, but the society soon went down. The Christian 
church aftei-wai'd pui'chased the clnii-i-h building. 

The Seventh 1).\v Adventists 

A society of this denomination was organized at Bunker Hill in 1870, 
by Rev. S. 0. Lane. Among the first membei-s wert> Allen James, H. G. 
Curtis. Alexander Baxter, Granville Hedrick, .lolm Turner and their 
wives, Mary Crowder and Mary Clouse. Sei-vices were held at the homes 
of the membei's iintil 1882, when a fi'ame house of worship was built 
in Duekwall's addition, on Kim street. The congregation was never 
very strong in numhcrs and some