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Stephen Jewett, Esq.; George C. Tanner, D. D. ; James Dobbin, D. D.; A. 

C. RogerB, M. D.; A. E. Haven, Esq.; M. M. Shields, Esq.; A. W. 
McKinstry, Esq.; Hon. James Hunter; Prof. Harry E. Whitney; Hon. 

D. F. Kelley; Hon. J. C. Couper; Prof. Horace Goodhue; Hon. W. A. 
Sperry; B. E. Darby, Esq.; E. E. Bigelow, M. D.: Hon. F. A. Dunham; 
W. G. Clarkson, Esq.; Hon. John C. Brainerd; C. C. Campbell, Esq.; 
Virgil J. Temple, Esq.; Frank M. Kaisersott, Esq.; J. J. Eachae, Esq.; 
Dr. E. K. Clements; Frederick A. Davis, M. D.; Prof. J. H. Lewis; Prof. 
Philip J. Kuntz; H. F. Luers, Esq.; L. L. Bennett, M. D.; Hon. J. M. 
Diment; William Kaiser, Esq.; J. H Adair, M D; Hon. J. E. Morley, and 

many others. 




H. C. COOPER, JR., & CO. 
19 10 











It is with a feeling of considerable pride and pleasure that the 
publishers present this history for the approval of the people of Rice 
and Steele counties. The undertaking has not been an easy one, and 
the difficulties have been many, so many indeed that this work would 
not have been possible without the liberal assistance of the citizens 
of the counties. The chief contributors have given freely of their 
time and talent ; business men, church officials, fraternity and associ- 
ation officers, manufacturers, professional men and bankers, often at 
great personal sacrifice, have laid aside their regular duties to write 
of their communities and special interests ; educators have written of 
the schools ; and men and women in all walks of life have willingly 
given the information at their command regarding themselves, their 
families, their interests and their localities. To all of these the 
readers of this work owe a lasting debt of gratitude, and to each and 
every one the publishers extend their heartfelt thanks. 

Since this work was first proposed, it has been the plan of the 
publishers to prepare a narrative which would tell the story of this 
rich and prosperous vicinity from the time when it first became a 
geologic reality, through the years when the first explorers pushed 
their way into the wilderness, down to the present time, when cities 
and villages dot the landscape, and comfortable homes and fertile 
farms are seen on nearly every quarter section. 

In handling the vast amount of material gathered for this work, 
it has been the aim of the entire staff to select such matter as is 
authentic, reliable and interesting. Doubtless facts have been in- 
cluded that many will deem of little moment, but these same facts 
to others may be of the deepest import. It may be also that some 
facts have been omitted that many readers would like to see included. 
To such readers, we can only say that to publish every incident in 
the life of the counties would be to issue a work of many volumes; 
and in choosing such material as would come within the limits of two 
volumes, we believe that the matter selected is that which will prove 
of the greatest interest to the greatest number of readers, and also 
that which is the most worthy of being handed down to future gen- 
erations, who in these volumes in far distant years may read of their 
large-souled, rugged-bodied ancestors and predecessors who gave up 
the settled peace of older communities to brave the rigors of pioneer 

A few omissions have been due to the dereliction of some ol the 
people of the countas themselves, as in many instances repeated 
requests for information, especially in regard to the churches, have 
met with no response. In such cases, information gathered from 
other sources, though authentic, may have lacked copious detail. 



ington County in 1849 — Under the Judicial Jurisdiction of Ramsey 
County in 1851 — Attached to Dakota County in 1853 — Rice and Steele 
Counties Included in the Fifth Judicial District with Hon. N. M. 
Donaldson on the Bench 58 




Introduction — Situation and Advantages — Natural Drainage — Cannon River 
— Topography — Spill and Timber — The Bridgewater Kaine — Minerals 
from the Drift — Mastodon Remains — Old Wells in Rice County — Arti- 
ficial Mounds — Material Resources — Building Stone, Bricks and Lime. 65 



The Wapakootas — Early Explorations — Adventurers Who May Have 
Reached Rice County — Official Surveys — "After Eighty-four Years," 
an Interesting Paper by Stephen Jewett Relating to the Faribaults— 
Biography of Jean Baptiste Faribault — Biography of Alexander Fari- 
bault — He Begins Trading on the Cannon River in 1826 — Settlement 
of Indians at Present Site of Faribault in 1834 — First Buildings — 
Distinguished Services of Alexander Faribault — The Passing of the 

Red Men. 


Alexander Faribault Located in Rice County as a Ti'ader — Induces In- 
dians to Settle Near the Confluence of the Straight and Cannon Rivera 
— Takes up His Own Residence on Hie Bluffs East of the River — 
Builds Trading Post and Log House in 1835 — Sends Followers West 
of the River to Shut n Farm — Entertains Many Friends— Peter Bush 
Arrives — Crump, Standish and Oekler Selecl a Claim — Luke Httlett, 
Mark Wells, Levi Nutting and Others Make Trip from Saint Paul — 
James Wells Takes a Claim — The First Winter at Faribault — First 
Framo House Built — Settlers Begin to Ani\e in Larger Numbers — 
Experiences of the Pioneers 89 



Rice County Created in L853 — Its Indefinite and Extensive Boundaries — 
Four Counties Cornering al the Confluence of the Straight and Cannon 


Rivers — Western Boundary of Goodhue Denned in 1854 — Sibley Sent 
to the Legislature — Act Passed Defining New Boundaries — Eiee County 
Organized by Governor Gorman — County Seat Established at Cannon 
City — Resentment by People of Faribault — Refusal to Pay Taxes — 
Election of Officers in Fall of 1855 — Faribault Becomes County Seat 
— Records Transcribed from Mendota Documents — Last Change of 
Boundary Made in 1857 102 


Meeting of Appointed Commissioners Held at Cannon City — First Meeting 
of Elected Commissioners — School Districts Formed — Township Sys- 
tem — Commission System Again — Yearly Work of the Board — Poor 
Farm Planned — County Court House and Jail Erected — County Officers 
— County Poor Farm 107 



Council Districts — Territorial Legislatures — Rice County in the Seventh 
and Sixth Council Districts Successively — Constitutional Convention — ■ 
Rice County Becomes a Part of the Fifth Legislative District of the 
New State — Rice County Constituted the Eighth District — Becomes 
the Eighteenth District — Becomes the Twentieth District — Assumes Its 
Present Designation of Twenty-eighth District in 1897 — Representa- 
tives in Congress 119 


Fourteen Townships in Rice County Organized in May, 1858— Early Set- 
tlement — Early Incidents and First Supervisors of Each Township — 
Wells — Bridgewater — Wheeling — Richland — Walcott — Forest- 
Warsaw — Cannon City — Erin — Morristown — Northfield — Shieldsville — 
Wheatland— Webster 126 


Election Precincts as Organized in 1856— Houston, Faribault, East Prairie, 
Cannon River and Forest— First Judges of Elections— New Precincts 
Created — Various Changes — Townships Assume Practically Present 
Form and Name in 1858— Warsaw Then Called Sargent— Faribault 
and Cannon City Divided J ^ * 




Conditions at the Outbreak of the Struggle — First War Meeting — Items 
of Interest— Bounties and Drafts — Ladies' Soldiers' Aid Society — 
Names of the Veterans from Rice County — First Infantry — Second 
Infantry— Third Infantry— Fourth Infantry — Fifth Infantry— Sixth 
Infantry — Seventh Infantry — Eighth Infantry — Tenth Infantry — Elev- 
enth Infantry — First Battalion Infantry — First Heavy Artillery — 
First Mounted Bangers — Braekett 's Battalion — Independent Battalion 
— Second Cavalry — Other Companies and Regiments — Revised by Hon. 
James Hunter 196 



Important Happenings — Mostly in Faribault — The Years 18571879 — Dis- 
asters, Deaths, Organizations, Churches and Celebrations 214 


Incidents in the Life of the County from 1880 to 1910 — Fires, Deaths, 
Marriages, Organizations, Churches, Crimes and Other Happenings in 
the Daily Routine of Rice County Progress — Culled from the News- 
paper Files 22l' 


Birth, Ancestry and Education — Influence in Politics as a Young Man — 
Staff Colonel — Theological Training — Ordination — First Rectorship — 
Call to Chicago — His Work in the Parish of the Free Church of the 
Holy Communion— Consecrated Bishop of Minnesota — First Service 
in His New Diocese — First Service in Faribault — Pioneer Conditions 
— Beginning of the Bishop Seabury Mission Schools — Shattuck School 
— Seabury Divinity School — St. Mary's Hal] — Work Among the In- 
dians — Service on Treaty Commission — "The Great Apostle of the 
Red Men" — Honors Abroad — Work in Cuba- Called to the Sandwich 
Islands — Work in the Southern States — Distinctions in England — 
Friend of the Black Man — Visit to Porto Rico — Growth of the Diocese 
— Domestic Life — Bishop Gilbert — Bishop Eclsall — Summary of His 
Life Work— Opinions and Appreciations by Eminent Men — Triumph- 
ant Closing of a Glorious Career — Memorials 260 


Bishop Whipple's Influence — Rev. J. Lloyd Breck, Rev. Solon W. Man- 

ney, Rev. K. Steele Peake and Hon. R. A. Mott— Site Selected for 



Schools — Associate Mission — St. Columba Mission — Plans for Educa- 
tional Work — Beginning of the Work — Parish of the Good Shepherd 
— Work Among the Indians — Peace Between Sioux and Chippewas — 
Coming of Bishop Whipple — Episcopal Sea City of Minnesota — Sea- 
bury Divinity School — Growth of Episcopalian Influence — Mrs. Shum- 
way's Bequest— Officers of the Mission and Professors of the Divinity 
School — Endowments and Scholarships — Gifts of Hon. H. T. Welles, 
Hon. Isaac Atwater, Dr. E. C. Bill, Mrs. Augusta M. (Shumway) 
Huntington and Junius Morgan — Recapitulation and Authorities 
Quoted— By Bev. George C. Tanner, D. D. — Shattuck School — By 
Bev. James Dobbin, D. D. — St. Mary's School — St. James' School... 291 



Town Proprietors — Town Plat — Early Additions — First Buildings — Pioneer 
Events — Early Descriptions — Some Pioneers — Mystery of Metropolis- 
ville— Faribault Township— Faribault in 1872— Luke Hulett 319 


Extracts from a "Brief History of Faribault" — Old Town Site — Appear- 
ance of Faribault in 1855 — Early Manufacturing Interests — Location 
of the County Seat — First Church, School and Newspaper — Indian 
Scares — Denominational Concord — Costly Fire — A Few Old Settlers.. 329 


Historic Meeting of 1870 — City Charter Passed by Legislature and Ap- 
proved by the Governor, February 29, 1872 — Election of April 2, 1882 
— First Officers — Mayor Tower's Inaugural Address — List of City 
Officials 347 



Advantages and Location — Minnesota School for the Deaf. Dumb and 
Blind— Minnesota School for Defectives — Minnesota School for the 
Deaf and Blind— School for the Blind— School for the Deaf— The 
Minnesota School for the Feeble Minded and Colony for Epileptics . . 352 


Faribault as the City of Churches, Schools, Parks and Homes, by A. E. 
Haven— Its Many Advantages as a Place of Residence— Library and 



City Hall — County Court House aud Jail — City Jail — Firemen's Hall 
— Central Park — Faribault Park — Railroads — St. Lucas Deaconess 
Hospital — City Lighting — Street Names — Waterworks — Sewer System 
— Bridges — City Market — Quarry — Telephone and Telegraph — Armory 
and Theater 362 



Faribault as a Business Center — The Progressiveness of Its Leading Men 
— Advantages of Life in the City — History of the Leading Industries 
— Various Industrial Facts of Interest — Edited by M. M. Shields — 
Banks and Banking 377 


Episcopalian — Parish of the Good Shepherd — Cathedral of Our Merciful 
Saviour — Shumway Memorial Chapel — Catholic Churches and Schools 
— Bethlehem Academy — School of the Immaculate Conception — Cath- 
olic Mission — Church of St. Lawrence — Church of the Sacred Heart — 
Congregational — First Congregational — Plymouth Congregational — The 
Congregational Church — Baptist — First Baptist — Free Will Baptist — 
Methodist — First Methodist — German Methodist — Lutheran — St. Lucas 
— Inimanuel — Markers — Trinity — Zion 393 


Masonic Orders by Prof. Harry E. Whitney — Patriotic Orders — Odd Fel- 
lows — Knights of Pythias — Elks— Eagles — Fraternal Insurance Indus- 
trial Unions — Faribault Commercial Club — Catholic Societies — Recre- 
ation Clubs — Literary Clubs 409 

■ ii \i'Ti:i: XXII. 

The North, Ames and Granger Mills ;it Northfield — Exciting Conflict 
Waged — Archibald's Superior Flour — His Process— The La Croix 
Brothers al Faribault— Theii [nventions Revolutionize the Flouring 
Business 1-9 


Younger and .lames Hrotheis Knter I ho State — Failure al Mankato — Ad- 
vance on NorthlioM — Heroic Defense by Allen. Wheeler and Manning 



— Events Inside the Bank — Heroism and Death of Heywood- — Bunker, 
Wounded, Escapes — Death of Gustavson — Stacy Takes Part in the 
Battle — Stiles and Miller Killed — Pursuit — Bandits Captured — Police- 
man Accidentally Killed— Trial and Conviction— Petitions for Pardon 
■ — Bob Younger Dies — Release of James and Cole Younger — Jame3 
Younger Suicides — Cole Younger Pardoned and Exiled 434 



Original Entries — Coming of John North — Platting of the Village — Be- 
ginning of Industry — Letter from John North — Early Events — First 
Deaths, Births and Marriages — The Red Men — Address of Mayor 
Seriver — Early Days, by Capt. D. F. Kelley 444 


Description — Old City Hall — City Hall and Fire House — Northfield Fire 
Department- — Police Force — Carnegie Library — Northfield Park — 
Ridge Square — Waterworks and Sewers — Electric Lights — Northfield 
Commercial Club — Rice County Fair Association — Northfield Hospital 
Association — Ware Auditorium — Odd Fellows' Home — Young Men's 
Christian Association — Railroads — Cemeteries — Banks — Manufacturing 
Interests — Industries — Churches — Societies and Clubs 457 


Story of Carleton College, Compiled by Horace E. Goodhue, with Bio- 
graphical Sketches by Members of the Faculty — Story of St. Olaf, 
Compiled from Article by 0. G. Felland— Growth of Two Notable 
Institutions 480 


Complete Story of the Growth of the Faribault Postoffice — Northfield — 
Morristown — Warsaw — Dundas — Veseli — Lonsdale — Webster — 
Nerstrand — Discontinued Post offices — Wheatland — Moland — Richland 
— Walcott — Fowlersville — Lester — Union Lake — Haaelwood — Berg — 
Troondjem — Tenod — Eklund — Wheeling — Shieldsville — Prai- 
rieville— Millersburg— Dean — Written by William Kaiser 508 


Story of the Various Newspapers Which Have Sprung into Existence in 
Rice County, Their Struggle for Existence, Their Influence and Im- 


portance, and in Most Cases Their Final Discontinuance — Story of the 
Present Day Papers — The Faribault Republican — The Faribault Pilot 
— The Faribault Journal — The Faribault Democrat — The Morristown 
Press — The Northfield News — The Northfield Independent — The Nor- 
wegian American, Edited by A. W. McKinstry 536 



Company B, of Faribault, by Capt. Frederick U. Davis — The Governor's 
Guards — Faribault Guards — Company B in the Twelfth Infantry in 
Spanish-American War — Officers and Men — Company D, of Northfield 
— Its Organization, First and Present Officers 545 



Village Started by Osmund Osmundson — Coming of the Railroad — First 
Building — Village Government — General Description — Business and In- 
dustries — City Hall — Fire Protection — Fires — Telephones — Farmers ' 
State Bank — Churches — Cemetery — Schools — Elevators — Creamery. . . . 550 


Location — Description — Early Settlement and History — First Town Meet- 
ing and Early Officers — Bohemians Assume Power — Wonderful Prog- 
ress — Name of Veseli from Veseli in Bohemia — Churches — Societies — 
Early Events — Cemeteries — Schools — Mercantile — Wheatland Village 
— Veseli — Lonsdale — Postoffices — Educational — Political — Summary 
— By F. M. Kaisersatt, Assisted by Joseph J. Rachac 555 



Early Settlement — Municipal History and Improvements — Furious Cyclone 
— Schools — Cemetery — Industries — Railroad — Churches — Fra- 
ternities — Edited by Virgil J. Temple 594 



Modern Activities — Early History — The Archibalds — Beginning of Indus- 
try—Schools—Churches—Old Mills 608 




Shieldsville — Warsaw Village — Lake City — Millersburg — Cannon City — 
East Prairieville — Other Villages 613 



Resume of Public Educational Work in the County by Superintendent 
John H. Lewis — Schools in the Rural Districts — Northfield — Morris- 
town — Northfield and Dundas 620 



Situation — Advantages — Watershed of Southeastern Minnesota — Native 
Trees — Mineral Springs — Paper by E. W. Hadley — Formation of the 
Earth— Surface Drift and Till— Margin of the Ice Cap of the Glacial 
Period — Morainic Area — Large Boulders — Strata at Central Park, 
Owatonna 631 



Coming of the White Men— Settlement in Medford in 1853— A. L. Wright, 
Chauncey Lull, Smith Johnson, Orlando Johnson and L. M. Howard — 
First Land Broken — First Cabin Built — First Woman Arrives — Influx 
of Settlement in 1854 — Names of the Early Pioneers — Settlement in 
Townships 636 


Wabasha, Dakota and Rice County Affiliations — Steele County Organized, 
1855 — Old Time Boundaries — Various Points Suggested as the County 
Seat — Annexations from Dodge County — Setting Off of Wabasha 
County — Ogil's Narrative — Child's Narrative — Dodge County 640 




First Meeting of Board of County Commissioners — Acts and Personnel of 
Succeeding Boards — County Officers — Register of Deeds — County 
Treasurer — County Auditor — County Sheriff — Superintendent of 
Schools — Judge of Probate — Clerk of Court — County Attorney — 
County Surveyor — County Coroner — Court Commissioner — Complete 
List of Officers Since 1887 652* 


Council Districts — Territorial Legislatures — Steele County in the Seventh, 
Sixth and Tenth Council Districts Successively — Constitutional Conven- 
tion — Steele County Becomes a Part of the Fifteenth Legislative Dis- 
trict of the New State — Steele County Becomes Part of Sixteenth 
District — Steele County Constituted the Twelfth District— Assumes Its 
Present Designation of Eighth District in 1897 — Representatives in 
Congress 674 


Organization and Original Boundaries of Steele County Townships — Med- 
ford Township — Clinton Falls Township — Owatonna Township — Ha- 
vana Township — Somerset Township — Merton Township — Deerfield 
Township — Meriden Township — Lemond Township — Berlin Township 
— Summit Township — Blooming Prairie Township — Aurora Township 
— First Settlement and Early Events — Present Officers 683 



Biographies of All the Practitioners of Law in Steele County by the Hun. 
W. A. Sperry— The Bench— Hon. N. M. Donaldson— Hon. Samuel Lord 
— Hon. Thomas S. Buckham — Life, Education and Services of Scores 
of Distinguished Men "l fi 


Floating Railroad Bonds— Owatonna Banks Pirsl Bank of Owatonna— 

s nd Hank of Owatonna — The FirsI National Bank of Owatonna — 

The Farmers' National Hank of Owatonna — Tts Beautiful Building 
Described by Carl K. Pirsl State Bank of Owatonna. now 


Security State Bank of Owatonna — Blooming Prairie Banks — Whitton 
and Haley — J. C. Brainard & Co. — The State Bank of Blooming 
Prairie — First National Bank of Blooming Prairie — Farmers and Mer- 
chants' State Bank of Blooming Prairie — Ellendale — The Security 
State Bank of Ellendale 736 



Reminiscences — Anecdotes and Adventures — Judge Allen C. Adsit — C. W. 
Ilawley — A. B. Cornell — Judge G. W. Green — Watchman and Register 
— Ezra and John H. Abbott — Rev. William Thompson 7JH 



Resume of the Principal Happenings Arranged in Chronological Order — 
chapter in Which the Reader May Live Again Through the Incidents 
of Steele County Life from 1853 to 1888 774 


Deaths, Accidents, Crimes, Fires, and Thousands of Interesting Events 
Transpiring Between January, 1888, and June, 1910— Compiled from 
Newspaper Files 802 


Early Attempts at Cheese Making — Individual Ownership of Gathered 
Cream Plants— Introduction of the Co-operative Creamery Plan— Indi- 
vidual Ownership Vanishes — Number of Creameries Multiply — Impor- 
tance of the Industry — Volume of Output — Conclusions — By Hon. 
John R. Morley 824 



State System Inaugurated — First School House Erected in Steele County 
— Other Schoolhouses Soon Built— Word Picture of Pioneer School- 
First County Superintendent Appointed— List of His Successors— 
Owatonna Schools— Early Meetings of the Board— Grammar School 
Established— High School Course— Modern Modifications and Addi- 
tions—Present Building, System and Officers— List of City Superin- 
tendents — Contributed by Professor Philip J. Kuntz 828 




Steele County in the War for the Preservation of the Uniou — First War 
Meeting Held — Company Marches to Faribault and Is Mustered in at 
St. Paul — Enlistments and Bounties — Military Districts — War Record 
of Those First Enlisting — Names of the Soldiers from this County — 
Grand Army Organizations — Old No. 5 Post — McPherson Post— James 
A. Goodwin Post and Corps— By E. E. Bigelow, M. D 837 



First Settlement— Pettit and Cornell— First House Built— Influx of Popu- 
lation — Bridge Constructed— Hotel and Stores Opened— Activities of 
the Early Days— Business Houses of 1867 and 1887— First Events Sf>2 


"Beautiful Owatonna" — The City of Beautiful Homes— Idea] Situation 
Public Facilities— Educational Institutions— Parks and Trees— Side 
walks— Business Advantages— Public Buildings— Contributed by Hon. 
F. A. Dunham 8e 



coming of the Railroads— Race for Supremacy— Owatonna Becomes a Pio- 
neer Distributing Point— Traveling Men Begin to Settle Eere— Rea 
sons for Their Choice— Social and Municipal Advants itonna 

Council, No. 85, United Commercial Travelers— First Officers Promi- 
nent Members— Contributed by W. B. Claikson— Owatonna Hotels- 
Old Winship HouS( — Pioneer Bot< -contra! House— American House 
—Old Owatonna House— Norsk II< —Scandinavian House— German 
Hotel— Arnold House— Tremont II fe— City Hotel— Peachey House 
— Robinson House — Merchants' Ho 

i ommercial Hotel — Church 's 

Hotel — Kaplan House— Owatonna hJuse Smaller Hostelriea 



Incorporated us a ( Lty— Minutes of First Council Meeting— Changes in 
City Charter— City Limits— Officers of the City— City and School Bond 





Parks— Central Park — Dartt 's Park — Mineral Springs Park — Second Ward 
Park — Cemeteries — City Waterworks — Sewer System — City and Fire- 
men 's Hall — Owatonna Library — City Hospital — Lighting and Heating 
System — Theater 895 


Masonic Orders — Pythian Societies — Odd Fellows ' Lodges — Fraternal Insur- 
ance Lodges — Catholic Orders — Women 's Clubs — Contributed by E. E. 
Bigelow, M. D. — Clubs and Organizations 912 


Location and Importance— Its Existence as the Minnesota Academy — Gifts 
of George A. Pillsbury — Buildings — Object — Societies — Officers — 
Biographies 939 


Location and Advantages — Origin — Business and Government — Fire De- 
partment — Cornet Band — Churches — Fraternal Societies — Creamery — 
Elevators — Schools — Beaver Lake 943 


Baptist — Congregational — Episcopal — Universalist — Catholic — Meth- 
odist — German Methodist — Danish Lutheran — German Lutheran — 
Seventh Day Adventist 957 



Bixby— Clinton Falls — Medford— Settlements and Hamlets — Anderson— 
Deerfield — Steel Center — Riverpoint — Merton — Berlin — Lemond — Meri- 
den— Havana — Pratt — Sago — Hope Station — Former Villages — Elm- 
wood — Dodge City— Adamsville — Somerset Village — Somerset Post- 
office — Elmira Village — Aurora Postoffice — Oak Glen — Aurora Station 
— Postoffiees — Railroads 976 




Early Stage anil Mail Routes in Steele County — Owatonna Postoffice — 
Postmasters — Locations — Rural Routes — Free Delivery — New Building 
— Fresent Force — Receipts — Compiled with the Assistance of J. M. 
Dirnent 988 


Modern Blooming Prairie — Its Beauties. Situation and Advantages — Com- 
ing of the Railroad — Early Beginnings — Municipal Improvements — 
Park, Waterworks, Sewer — Fraternities — Churches — Leading Stores — 
Elevators. Mill and Creamery — Schools — Grain Industry — Conclusion. . 


Watchman and Register — Medford Valley Argus — Owatonna Journal — 
News Letter — Owatonna Representative — Owatonna Register — Owa- 
tonna Democrat — Vidette — Owatonna Register — Owatonna Plaindealer 
- — Journal and Herald — Owatonna Chronicle — Journal-Chronicle — Peo- 
ple's Press — Our Pastime — Morning Star — Daily Herald — Owatonna 
Tribune — Ellendale Eagle — Blooming Prairie Times — Compiled and 
. Edited by Benjamin F. Darby 1008 


History of Company I, Second Infantry, Minnesota National Guard — Its 
Honors and Efficiency — Muster In — First Officers — Changes in Officers 
— Erecting the Armory — Social and Disciplinary Advantages — Conclu- 
sion 1022 





Introduction Relating Climatic Advantages — Geology — The 
Mound Builders — Discussions by Prof. E. W. Schmidt, Prof. 
Anton T. Gesner and Dr. W. M. Sweney — The Newly Dis- 
covered Lowland Mounds. 

In the central part of that nature-favored stretch of rolling, 
or occasionally broken, prairie known as southeastern Minnesota, 
where the Straight river and upper course of the Cannon, pass- 
ing well cultivated farms, busy cities and prosperous villages, give 
fertility to the soil, and power to the mills, lie two sister counties, 
Rice and Steele, of historic past, prosperous present and promis- 
ing future. 

The elevation of this stretch of land above the sea, its fine 
drainage and the dryness of the atmosphere, give it a climate 
of unusual salubrity and pleasantness. Its latitude gives it cor- 
respondingly longer days in summer, and during the growing 
seasons about one and a half hours more of sunshine, than in 
the latitude of St. Louis. This taken in connection with the 
abundant rainfall in early autumn, accounts for the rapid and 
vigorous growth of crops in this vicinity and their early maturity. 
The cool breezes and cool nights in summer prevent the debil- 
itating effect of heat so often felt in lower latitudes. The winter 
climate is one of the attractive features. Its uniformity and its 
dryness, together with the bright sunshine and the electrical con- 
dition of the air, all tend to enhance the personal comfort of the 
resident, and to make outdoor life and labor a pleasure. 

From the creation of the earth, to the time when such ideal 
conditions prevailed, many ;eons passed, and after countless 
ages, this locality awaited the coming of man. Primeval nature 
reigned in all her beauty. 

"The buffalo, the elk, and the deer, for centuries roamed the 
wild prairies and woodlands; fishes basked undisturbed in its 
lakes and rippling streams; the muskrat, the otter, and the mink- 
gamboled upon the ice in winter with no man to molest them. 
Ducks, geese, and other aquatic fowls, in countless numbers, 
covered the lakes and streams in summer, and chattered and 
squawked and frolicked in all their native glory and happiness. 
The prairie wolves howled upon their little hillocks, and. coward- 



like, were always ready to attack and destroy the weak and de- 
fenseless. Pocket gophers went on with their interminable un- 
derground operations, all unconscious of the inroads soon to be 
made upon their dominions by the husbandman. Grouse and 
prairie chickens cackled, crowed, and strutted in all their pride. 
Blizzards and cyclones swept unheeded across its vast domains. 

The autumnal prairie fires, in all their terrible grandeur and 
weird beauty, lighted the heavens by night and clouded the sun 
by day. Age after age added alluvial richness to the soil and 
prepared it to be one of the most productive fields of the world 
for the abode of the husbandman and for the uses of civilized 

At some period of the earth's history, mankind in some form. 
took up its abode in the area that is now Rice and Steele coun- 
ties. The origin of human life in Minnesota has been made a 
subject of special study by Dr. Warren L'pham, secretary of 
the Minnesota Historical Society, and the thoughtful student is 
referred to his various articles on the subject; a detailed dis- 
illusion being beyond the scope of this work. 

Prof. E. W. Schmidt, the well known archaeologist of Red 
Wing. Minn., is now investigating the previously undiscussed 
lowland mounds of southern Minnesota, and it is possible that 
he will demonstrate the fact that this locality may have been 
occupied by primitive man in glacial and pre-glacial times. Dr. 
Upham lias already proven to scientists the existence of glacial 
and pre-glacial man in certain portions of this state. 

The first occupants of this immediate vicinity, whose occu- 
pancy has actually been conclusively demonstrated, were the 
"Mound Builders," as they have long hern called, but who in the 
light of Prof. Schmidt's discoveries, must now be called the High- 
land Mound Builders — that is, the builders of the mounds located 
in dry places, usually on eminences. 

These mounds are familiar to practically every resident of 
Minnesota, as this state is especially rich in such archaeological 
remains. At one time it was believed that the .Mound Builders 
were a prehistoric race, much superior to the Indians and differ- 
ing greatly from them in habits, life, appearance, racial char- 
acteristics and mental development. 

ier scientists, however, believe thai the Mound Builders 
were simply the ancestors of the presenl daj Indians, and differed 
in no impi >rtan1 characteristics from the aboriginies found here by 
the early explorers. The Mound Builders of this particular vicin- 
ity were probably the ancestors of the Sioux ami the Iowa In- 
dians, it being well known that these two races are branches 
of tii, ■ family. 

le historians have declared that the lowas formerly had 


their headquarters in the territory of the lower St. Croix, the 
upper Mississippi and the lower Minnesota rivers, and that they 
were driven out by the Sioux. On this point authorities differ, 
but it is possible that in pre-historic times the Iowas and the 
Sioux successively hunted on the prairies now embracing Rice 
and Steele counties. Since the date of the earliest exploration 
of the upper Mississippi, by Europeans, however, the occupants 
of this prairie were the Wapakoota Indians, the name being 
variously spelled, but meaning in Sioux, the Leaf Shooters, 
or more correctly "The Shooters in the Leaves of the Indigenous 

The story of the gradual distribution of the Sioux in Minne- 
sota, from their ancient headquarters about Mille Lacs is an 
interesting one, well worthy of study, but beyond the scope of 
this history. 

Prof. Schmidt has said : 

"The mounds ! The mounds ! Who does not love to spend a 
day among the silent monuments of a vanished race? Who is 
not charmed while strolling among these tombs, either when the 
green of spring covers them as with a carpet, while all around 
you the hills, lakes, rivers, ponds and woods contribute their 
beauty to complete the picture of a glorious day in June, or 
while the dreamy haze of an autumnal clay tinges the gorgeous 
panorama of the many-colored landscape with delicate tint of 
blue? To the charms of such a scene the lover of mounds is not 
a stranger, nor to the pleasant feeling of mystery that steals 
upon his mind as he gazes at the sepulchres that dot the terrace 
or stand out boldly on the promontory of a steep and rugged 

"What is the meaning of the mounds? Who made them? 
Whence did the mound builders come? When did they live here? 
What sort of life did they lead? What was their state of cul- 
ture? Who were the first inhabitants of Rice and Steele coun- 
ties? These are some of the questions which archaeology is busy 
trying to solve. 

"In regard to the origin of the mounds it may be said in 
brief that they are of Indian origin. The idea of a prehistoric 
race of mound builders distinct from the Indian has been ex- 
ploded by archaeological research, but it is very common to 
find this idea expressed in books of the last generation and in 
the minds of those who in early childhood had the "mound 
builder" theory instilled into them. The real mound builder 
was a genuine Indian and not a member of some other race. 
The evidences of this are many. Indians are known to have 
built mounds. The articles found in the mounds are the same 
in kind and make as those found on the nearby village site. In- 


variably a large mound group has a village site close by. The 
articles found on the sites and in the mounds are such as the 
Indians used. Space forbids a discussion of this subject, but 
here is a partial list of the objects that have been found in south- 
ern Minnesota: Arrows, of various sizes and shapes, made of 
chert, quartz, quartzite, guntlint and other varieties of rock- 
spearheads, knives, awls, needles, hammerstones, millstones, 
clubs, sinkers, bone implements, fragments of pipes, scrapers in 
profusion, ice-axes, spuds, chungee stones, paint pots, paint cup-. 
hammers of hematite and other kinds of rocks, fleshers, polish- 
ing stones, drills, hairpins, a decorated buffalo-rib knife, mauls, 
stone balls, flakes, chisels, lances, mullers, mortars, whetstones, 
decorated pieces of clam shells, also vast numbers of spalls, chips, 
rejects and fragmentary implements in various stages of com- 
pletion, a slate charm, pieces of lead probably brought up from 
Missouri, bones of many kinds of animals, rough tools, etc. Vast 
numbers of pottery fragments and a few entire vessels have also 
been found. Also a copper spear, large copper spuds, a small 
hoe made from a piece of rifle barrel deposited in one of the 
Indian graves at Red Wing, and shell beads from the same 
locality. Space forbids a detailed description of these relics. 
However, a few thoughts suggested by them relative to the state 
of culture, habits, modes of life and occupations of our prede- 
cessors may be mentioned. Fortified hills, tomahawks, battle 
clubs, spearheads, etc., mean war. Arrows signify war and the 
chase. We do not know what human beings first beheld the 
stretches of Rice and Steele counties as their home. We may 
never be able to look beyond the veil or penetrate the mists that 
enshroud the history of the past, yet we are not left in utter 
darkness. The relics mentioned tell us many interesting stories. 
The absence of great architectural ruins show that the mound 
builders lived in frail homes. The dearth of agricultural imple- 
ments docs not spell waving fields of golden grain. The ashpits 
and fireplaces mark the bare ground as the aboriginal stove. N'ct- 
sinkers imply the use of nets; ice-axes the chopping of holes in 
the ice to procure water, stone axes a clumsy device lor splitting 
wood; stone knives for scalping, cutting meat, leather and twigs ; 
countless flakes mark the ancient arrow maker's workshop; 
cracked bones show the Indian's love for marrow; shell beads. 
charms and ornaments in the shape of fish and other design- 
reveal a primitive desire for ornamentation; chisels and gouges 
recall the making of canoes; sun-dried pottery made of clay 
mixed with coarse sand, clam shells or powdered granite and 
marked with rows of dots made with a stick, thumbnail or Other 
objects, or else marked with lines. V shaped figures or chevron-, 
all are an index of a rather crude stale of pottery making. The 


hand supplied the lathe and the wheel. Inasmuch as some of 
the most ancient remains show great similarity to the more 
recent, we feel certain that no great progress was made by 
these early inhabitants. A copper spear of recent date shows 
no more signs of smelting than does the copper blade that has 
been much corroded by a great lapse of time. Trees hundreds 
of years old give us at least some measure of estimating the age 
of the contents of the mounds on which they stand, and it also 
means that the mound builder lived there several hundred years, 
if not longer. By such processes of reasoning we can learn a 
good deal of the social, individual and family life of the savage 
mound builder." 


Dr. William M. Sweney has said : 

"The general opinion, I think, prevails, that the art of chip- 
ping flint and stone implements is a lost one; but as there are a 
number of descriptions in print, written by persons who have 
witnessed the operation, I will give a description or two. Catlin's 
description of Apache mode of making flint arrow points : 'This 
operation is very curious, both the holder and the striker singing, 
and the strokes of the mallet, given exactly in time with the 
music, and with a short and rebounding blow, in which, the In- 
dians tell us, is the great medicine of the operation.' Admiral 
L. E. Belcher gives an account of flint arrow head making by 
western Eskimo tribes. Schoolcraft describes the mode of mak- 
ing flint arrow heads by North American Indians. John Smith 
describes the making of arrow points by Virginia Indians. 'His 
arrow head he quickly maketh with a little bone, which he ever 
weareth at his brace, of a splint of a stone or glass, in the form 
of a heart and these they glue to the end of their arrows.' 

"I have made the statement that it could never be known how 
many ages the Indians had flourished in southern Minnesota, and 
now add the opinions of others. Many writers in the past, and a 
few at the present time, speak of the mound builders as a van- 
ished race and declare that the skeletons found buried in the 
mounds denote that they were giants in stature. Marquis De 
Nadaillac, in 'Prehistoric America,' pages 113-154, says: 'The 
new school, with such scholars at its head as Brinton, Cyrus 
Thomas, Powell and Carr, hold that the present Indians are the 
descendants of the Mound Builders.' John Gmeiner, pastor of 
the Church of St. Raphael, Springfield, Minn., January 10, 1908, 
in 'Acta et Dicta,' published by the St. Paul Catholics' Historical 
Society, July, 1908, pages 221-222, says: 'The Dakota confed- 
eration consisted of a number of tribes whose ancestors must 
have been originally united in one tribe, for they spoke dialects 


of the same language.' About 800 years ago seven tribes, the 
Omaha, Ooehenonpa, Minnikannazo, Ttazipco, Licanga, Hunk- 
papa, and Yanktonnen, united to form the Dakota confederation. 
The very name implies this. It means 'allied nations.' The 
name Sioux was unknown to them ; it is a corruption of an 
Ojibwa word, meaning enemies, as the Dakotas and Ojibwas 
were continually at war. The Dakota confederation gradually 
increased until it included forty-two tribes and extended far be- 
yond the limits of our present state. 

"The Dakotas entered Minnesota and Wisconsin about the 
beginning of their confederation. Father Craft writes : 'It is 
quite certain they were near Lake Michigan 800 years ago, as 
they met there Eric Upsi, Bishop of Greenland, who had come 
there from Vineland about 1121.' It is certainly a most inter- 
esting and surprising fact to find the long-lost, zealous Norse 
bishop finally reappear in the ancient traditions of the Dakotas. 
Any one desirous of reading more about Bishop Eric Upsi, or 
Gnupson, may consult P. De Roo, 'History of America Before 
Columbus,' Philadelphia and London, 1900, vol. 88, pp. 174-282. 
No doubt Eric Upsi came to the western shores of Lake Mich- 
igan by way of the St. Lawrence river and the Great Lakes. Ac- 
cording to Humboldt, the Norsemen had some of the principal 
settlements at the mouth of the St. Lawrence river, and it was 
quite natural for them to follow that great waterway to its 
sources, as the French did at a later period. 

"Following is an article written by Lucien Carr, entitled 
The Mounds of the Mississippi Valley Historically Considered, 
which appeared in memoirs of the Kentucky Geological Survey. 
Vol. 11, 1183; N. S. Shaler, Director. In a paper upon the Pre- 
historic Remains of Kentucky, published in the first volume of 
these memoirs, I have expressed the opinion that it was im- 
possible to distinguish between a series of stone implements 
taken from the mounds in the Mississippi valley and a similar 
series made and used by the modern Indians. In fact, so alike 
are these objects in conception and execution that any attempt 
to distinguish them, based upon form or finish, must be but 
the merest guess work. From the rude knife to the carved and 
polished "Groget," they may, one and all. have been taken from 
the inmost recesses of a mound or picked up on the surface amid 
the debris of a recent Indian village, and the most experienced 
archaeologist, if called upon to decide as to their origin, would 
have to acknowledge himself al fault. Nor does the similarity 
stop with objects made of stone. On the contrary, it is believed 
to extend t<> all articles, of every kind whatsoever, that have 
thus far been taken from the mounds. Indeed, 1 might even go 
further, and as the result of some years of work, as well in the 


field as in the library, venture the assertion that not only has 
there not as yet been anything taken from the mounds indicating 
a higher stage of development than the red Indian of the United 
States is known to have reached, but that even the mounds 
themselves, and under this head are included all the earthworks 
of the Mississippi valley, were quite within the limits of his 
efforts. All that I intend to assert is, that, admitting every- 
thing that can be reasonably claimed by the most enthusiastic 
advocate of the superior civilization of the Mound Builders, 
there is no reason why the red Indians, of the Mississippi valley, 
judging from what we know, historically, of their development, 
could not have thrown up these works. This proposition is not 
as complete as could be desired, and yet it probably embodies 
all that can ever be proven on this subject. 

"I quote from Marquis de Nadaillac's article, "The Unity of 
the Human Species,' pp. 1-2. The arrow heads of the Dakota, 
Apache, and Comanche Indians show curious resemblance to 
those discovered on the borders of the Seine and Thames; the 
nuclei of Scandinavia compare well with those of Mexico, and 
if one exchange the hatchets or the knives of flint from Europe 
with similar objects from America it is difficult for even experts 
to separate them, however well they may be versed in pedo- 
graph and prehistoric archaeology, and it will be extremely dif- 
ficult to distinguish the races to which they belong. Pottery from 
widely separated regions is made in the same form and by the 
same processes of fabrication, and even with the same ornamenta- 
tion. The spindle whorls in stone, bone and pottery, found in 
settlements succeeding each other on the hills of Hissarlik. 
recall those of the Swiss lake dwellings. Those of Peru, Mexico, 
and even those in present use among the Navajos, are the same 
as in our museums, whether they come from Italy, Germany, 
the south of France, or the north of Scandinavia." 

Prof. Anton T. Gesner, of Faribault has investigated many 
of the mounds in the vicinity of that city and is the discoverer of 
hitherto overlooked series in the vicinity of the Seabury Divinity 


Fifty miles south of St. Paul and three miles west of Fari- 
bault in the southern part of Rice county is a pretty sheet of 
water three miles in length and one in greatest breadth. The 
lake is one of a number which beautify the Cannon valley, and 
all are drained by a small stream which was once a famous 
waterway for the early trappers and roaming Sioux. When the 
early whites came to Rice county they found by the northeast 


shore of Cannon lake the wigwams and lodges of a band of Sioux. 
They were known as the Leaf Shooters (W'ahpekuta or Wapa- 
kootas) and they appear to have had for many years free range 
of the entire valley and much of the lake region round about. 

This region, however, appears to have had a more ancient 
history still, for beside the few mounds which have not escaped 
irreverent hands and which are probably quite modern, there 
are indications that this shore was a habitation of men who 
dwelt here centuries ago. One spot especially seems to confirm 
this view. It is a long knoll overlooking the outlet of the lake 
where, during the past six years, the writer has found dozens 
of flint arrow points, sherds of pottery, rare old stone axes, 
scrapers, leaf-shaped knives and fragments of bone. At a dis- 
tance one might mistake the knoll for an artificial mound, which 
it is not; for eighteen to twenty-four inches beneath the sod we 
come upon the sand which overlies the gravel proclaiming the 
loess of glacial times, and which reminds us that when that old 
ice cap was thawing off our north temperate zone the Minnesota 
river made its short cut to the Mississippi through this very 
valley and poured forth a few miles north of where Red Wing 
has been built. 

How interesting it would be if one could find an arrow point 
or axe in that drift ! Rut one never does. Chips of flint lie close 
above it, but not below. Still the knoll as a village site must be 
old. There are reasons for believing it was once an island. Now 
only some modern road-making prevents it from being so in the 
spring. In the early days and within the memory of man the 
outlet was a famous pass for water fowl, and in the old days 
the fishing and trapping hereabouts was unexcelled. Those who 
say that the aboriginal man was wanting in sense of beauty, or 
fitness in selecting a home, to be convinced of their error have 
but to read the lines of their finely cut implements of war. to 
trace the plainest decoration on their crudest bowls or to stand 
at sunset on some commanding hill where little is left to tell 
of their ancient occupation but the red marks of their fires on 
the hearths which witness to their forsaken homes. 

In studying the Hint implements and remains of a people who 
have passed, one needs to exercise caution if he would speak of 
their age. But it seems to the writer that even the most cautious 
of students will find here evident traces of age which must 
throw the fust occupants of this shore of Cannon Lake many 
hundreds of years in the past. 

Wry few bone implements of any kind have been found on 
this previously-mentioned knoll, but one — a hone needle — is 
well preserved. The rest are far gone. Some of the pottery 
is very old. and a bit of whetstone still shows the grove where 


the arrow shaft was laid. Types similar to most of these re- 
mains have been found on a lake shore some five miles away. 
J. V. Brower, so well known during his lifetime for accurate 
and faithful descriptions of many remains in our state, saw 
some of these and pronounced upon their peculiarities as de- 
noting great age, and there can be little doubt that we have also 
the scattered remains of a primitive people on this Cannon Lake 

Prof. E. W. Schmidt, mentioned earlier in this chapter, has 
written the following article in regard to the "lowland mounds" 
which he has in the past few years investigated with scholarly 
thoroughness. While the article deals with Dakota and Goodhue 
counties as well as Rice and Steele counties, the former refer- 
ences are retained in this work as being necessary to a complete 
understanding of the mounds in the two latter counties. 



In accordance with a request, the following paper has been 
prepared with the hope that it may contain some things of in- 
terest and value to the student of Minnesota archaeology. If 
the discussion should prove in the end to contain an addition 
to the already existing fund of archaeological knowledge relating 
to our state, then the time and energy spent in collecting the 
facts have not been spent in vain. 

During a number of years past, I have repeatedly observed 
a number of earth heaps in different parts of Goodhue, Dakota, 
Rice and Steele counties, which, though differing in character- 
istics of location from the commonly known Indian mounds, 
nevertheless to all outward appearance resemble them. Since 
many of the mounds observed are situated in low, level and 
rather wet ground, a person accustomed to mound hunting along 
the Mississippi valley and along the high-banked lakes of the 
Wisconsin might easily pass by these tumuli and think they 
were curious freaks of nature. The mounds that dot the inland 
lakes of Wisconsin and Minnesota, as well as those that border 
the Cannon, are, as a rule, located on land that may be called 
high, as for example the terraces that skirt the river bluffs, or 
elevated shores. The mounds to be described are, on the other 
hand, located as a rule, on land that is low compared with the 
surrounding territory. Glacial outwash plains whose drainage 
is young and immature contain the greatest number. Only one 
mound has been found on a high terrace. 

Following is a list of the mounds that I have found in Rice 
and Steele counties: 


Rice County. — (i) In the township of Bridgewater, sec- 
tions 12, 13, 14, are 120 mounds. These mounds are strung along 
the east side of Cannon river south of Northfield. (2) Dundas, 
section 14, east of town, 13. (3) South of Dundas at Thill- 
bar's place and adjoining land, 54. (4) Cannon City, section 
4, south of river, 10. (5) Webster, sections 9, 6; sections 16, 
17, 12; sections 29, 31, 6. (6) Between Stanton and the head- 
waters of Prairie creek and its tributaries, 577. (7) Wheeling, 
section 14, near Nerstrand, about 25. 

Steele County. — (1) On the prairie eight miles south of 

Closer investigation would doubtless reveal others, although 
there are large tracts of territory where none are found. 

The western part of Rice county is strikingly poor in mounds. 
One might have expected the shores of Union lake. Circle, Fox. 
Shieldsville and other lakes to be dotted with mounds, but the 
observations made so far have not revealed any. A possible 
explanation of this fact may be that these lakes are minor ones, 
being a rough and hilly country which was originally heavily 
timbered and unsuitable for travel, and also rather far away from 
the more open valleys of the Minnesota and Cannon rivers. At 
Rice lake, Prairie lake, and Crystal lake, no mounds were ob- 
served. The distribution of the mounds seems to depend to a 
large extent on the topography of the country. The large out- 
wash plains with their tributary branches ramifying up to the 
moraine seem to be one factor. These facts are undoubtedly 
important in trying to explain the number, origin and distribu- 
tion of these earthheaps. 

After examining so many similar mounds in many different 
places, and in view of the fact that so far there is no positive 
evidence at hand to tell us how these mounds came to be, it is 
perfectly proper to ask: How are these mounds made? Are they 
geological features of the country ? If so let the geologist explain 
them. Or have they been formed by plants or animals? If so, 
let the biologist explain them. If. for example, animals have 
made them either by their own efforts or by the help of natural 
agencies, then it may he that many of the highland knolls which 
are now counted and mapped as Indian mounds may prove to 
be of a similar origin. 

A prolonged observation of these mounds in the various local- 
ities where they occur seems to justify the conclusion that by 
far the greater number, if not all of them, are Indian mounds. 
These mounds are either artificial or else they are not artificial. 
Either view has its difficulties in our present Mate of knowledge. 
The following are some of the reasons which point to an 
artificial origin. The mounds are invariably sound ami are 


made of the same kind of soil as occurs on the land on which 
they are situated. Some people call them gopher hills, or ant- 
hills, or remnants of haystacks, or swells in the land marking 
the site of a buried boulder. As regards the view that the 
mounds are the remains of haystacks we may say, that haystacks 
leave no residual soil of this kind when hay is left to rot. The 
mounds are often located where hay was never stacked, for 
example, in woods. On one tract of land that was being cleared 
of its timber, some of the mounds located in the woods had 
trees growing on them. Nor do haystacks leave remains of soil 
with sand, gravel and pebbles in them. Nor do they occur in 
woods with old trees growing on them. Some, of the mounds 
occur in places where, at least for a part of the year, it is very 
wet, where no farmer would stack hay, nor any gopher burrow, 
nor ants build their homes. It is true that ants are to be found 
in the lowlands, but the structures reared to mark the sites of 
their nest are never in these localities, more than a few inches 
over a foot in height. The width of the anthills is about one 
foot, and the flat truncated top usually slants in a southerly 
direction, facing the sun? Very likely such frail structures 
would, when deserted, disappear in a short time under the at- 
tack of the elements. In no instance were ants found living in 
the mounds. 

That people call these mounds gopher hills is easily ex- 
plained by the fact that gophers occasionally burrow in mounds. 
Immediately the inference is drawn that the gophers built the 
whole mound. Closer observation shows that wherever burrow- 
ing animals are found inhabiting mounds, the mound loses its 
smooth, convex outline, and becomes roughened and warty in 
appearance on account of the small heaps of dirt thrown up by 
the animals. Hence we may readily see how, in the lapse of 
long centuries, some of the mounds may have been inhabited for 
a time by gophers and made rough on the exterior. This would 
account for the bossed surface, that some mounds have. Mounds 
can be found in localities so wet that it is doubtful if a gopher 
ever lived there. Gophers do not live in wet places any more 
than in woods. Again, we know that gophers abound in many 
places where no mounds whatever occur. Why, for example, 
does not the enormous number of gophers in Goodhue county 
build mounds on the high prairies, or along the whole lengths 
of a river course? Why do they not build intermediate mounds 
as well as mounds 20 to 40 feet across? I never met a man who 
knew of gophers building large mounds. 

These considerations seem to warrant the conclusion that 
these mounds are not the accumulations of rotted grass, nor of 
gopher and ant diggings. Nor does there seem to be a natural 


agency to which the making of so many mounds, so regularly 
alike, in such different localities, can be inferred. If it be sug- 
gested that they might have been formed by upturned roots 
of trees that were blown over, or by the drift material of swollen 
waters, or by springs, a number of questions can be raised at 
once to throw great improbability on such an origin of the 
mounds. While we may conceive of some mounds having been 
formed in this way in certain places, none of the suggested 
modes, nor a combination of them, will explain the mounds in 
these places. Why should not these agencies have formed 
mounds in vastly larger areas where we know there are springs, 
where winds overturn trees, where flooded streams form very 
numerous dift accumulations but not mounds? Nor are these 
mounds small dunes blown up by the wind. The character of 
the land is such as to preclude all possibility of their formation 
by the wind. Much of the ground is too wet to permit the 
drifting of soil ; "blowouts" are absent from the vicinity ; some 
of the pebbles and rocks found in the mounds would require 
a terrific wind to transport them. Again, dunes built by the 
wind are not uniformly circular. Rather they are oblong, with 
the highest elevation, not in the middle, but towards one end. 
It were odd indeed that the wind should build such dunes in low 
places, or in woods, or in groups, or string them along creeks 
and not build them in places that are apparently much better 
adapted to wind-work. There are also other considerations 
which give color to the conclusion that the mounds were built by 
man, and that by the Indians. The shape of all the mounds 
is that of the ordinary round mound. In size they vary from 
fifteen to thirty feet across the top. Few exceed thirty feet. 
One mound measured fifteen paces, or about 45 feet across. 
In general, the height varies from one-half to two and one-half 
feet. A number exceed this and may form very conspicuous ob- 
jects on the meadow where the grass is burned away. A num- 
ber of mounds have circular depressions around them as if dirt 
had been removed thence. After a thaw, water may stand in 
the ring and make it very noticeable. 

At first it seemed to me very probable that the mounds 
served as tenting places. Tin- diameter and circumference of 
the mounds would suggest this, but the seeming absence of the 
action of fire does not support this view unless the Indians camp 
ing there did not build fires. In other respects there is no reason 
why Indians might not have camped there. The creeks and 
sloughs furnished an abundance of water. Fuel in great abun- 
dance was near at hand. Beavers, mink, muskrat, and other 
game were undoubtedly present in the sloughs. In the nearby 
Forest lived the deer in great numbers Moos< .\n<\ elk were 


also here. Farmers tell of having plowed up bones belonging 
to these animals. Of buffaloes there is scarcely a trace. The only 
buffalo relic observed was a partially decayed horn which I 
found near the mounds in the Greenvale slough. This may, 
however, have been accidentally left by passing parties. So far 
as observed, there is no wild rice within this region. Therefore 
Indians did not resort to this region to collect rice. There are, 
however, many evidences of the beaver's former presence in 
considerable numbers. Beaver dams occur in no small numbers 
in this region. The following figures will speak for themselves. 
They tell plainly of the great amount of work done. On section 
21, Greenvale, is a dam 380 feet long and at present two and 
one-half feet high. People living near the place say that formerly 
it was six feet high but was lowered by scraping down. It pro- 
duced backwater to the distance of a mile and formed a lake 
half a mile wide. In Bridgewater are two dams measuring re- 
spectively 202 feet and 176 feet in length. Another dam seen 
is now four feet nine inches in height at the middle, but since 
the ends of the dam lie higher upon the hillsides, the former 
height of the dam must have been about eight feet. This seems 
to be proved by the big pit on the up stream side of the west 
wing of the dam whence dirt was removed in the construction 
of the dam. The number of dams occurring within a short 
distance is often not small. On Mr. Allen's farm, about two 
miles east of Union lake, begins a series of dams in the woods. 
Ten beaver dams in a good state of preservation occur within 
the distance of a mile. On section 33 in the northwest corner 
is a beaver lake bottom half a mile long, one-fourth of a mile 
wide. On section 30 Greenvale is the most massive dam noted. 
It is not so very long but is about six feet high and has a very 
massive base. The length of the dam is sixty-three paces, or 
100 feet. Northwest of it are eight dams in rapid succession, 
each measuring from 120 to 150 feet in length. Beaver dams 
occur in Dakota, Rice, Steele, and Goodhue counties. They are 
often accompanied by canals and slides, pits at the ends of the 
dam where dirt was taken for the clam. Even wood has been 
found where farmers cut the dams to let out the water from the 
pond. Other evidences might be mentioned such as the char- 
acter of the places where the dams occur. They occur in just 
such places where one might expect the instinct and sagacity 
of the beaver to place them. The steeper side of the dam faces 
the pond or up-stream side; the other side has a longer slope 
and acts as a buttress. Therefore these dams agree in many 
important characteristics with dams found at the present day 
which are known to be inhabited by beavers. 

The points of chief interest are, however, first, the large mini- 


ber of dams. This means long occupation by a goodly number 
of beavers. Hence it is possible that such men as Radisson and 
Groseilliers, if they ever were at Prairie Island for a number 
of years may have collected a considerable number of beaver 
skins that were hunted in the not far away parts of Minnesota. 
The last beaver seen in this part of the state, so far as I know, 
was the one found dead three years ago by Mr. Frohlich on the 
Little Cannon near Cannon Falls. Mr. Frohlich told me that 
he watched the last colony of beavers for a number of 
years but for some reason they disappeared. Poplar stumps 
gnawed off by the beavers in the last season of their work can 
still be found there. A layer of twigs across the bottoms of the 
Little Cannon on Mr. Frohlich's farm, marks the site of the 
beaver's last attempt to build a dam in this locality. The beavers 
have now disappeared and become extinct in that part of the 
country unless it be true, as someone told me, that there are 
still a few left in the Little Cannon a few miles below Sogn. 
They were either trapped or else killed by the clearing away of 
the timber which served as their food, or by the cutting of dams, 
or else they have migrated to other parts. Specimens of the 
last cutting and dam can be seen at the museum of the Historical 
Society. They are genuine, as I myself collected them. The 
former presence of the beaver is now marked not only by the 
results of their labor, such as ridges of earth, excavations, pits, 
canals, slides, silled lake bottoms, and other conspicuous effects 
on the topography of the country, but also, as I believe, partially 
at least by the mounds built by the departed Indians who camped 
in these regions in quest of game. 

Another noteworthy fact in this connection is this, that the 
beaver pond bottoms are devoid of mounds. This shows that 
the mounds under discussion are not the remains of beaver 
huts, nor of muskrat houses. Many ponds are still inhabited by 
muskrats but no mounds occur near them, nor in countless other 
places where these animals live and have lived in all likeliness 
for centuries. 

The watercourses were the natural avenues for Indians to 
follow. The east side of Cannon river is fairly lined with mounds 
from Northfield to within a few miles of Faribault. Closer ex- 
amination of the region beyond will probably reveal others be- 
tween there and Cannon lake, and farther on to Morristown 
lake. Evidences of an old trail still exist near Waterford on 
the east side of the river. Early settlers told me thai an Indian 
trail from St. Paul to Faribaull crossed the Cannon at Waterford. 
In that place the river was shallow. It is said that there was 
another trail from Red Wing to Faribaull and passed the south- 
ern end of Prairie creek. I failed to find any remains of it. That 


Indians camped occasionally in these regions in historic times is 
testified to by many settlers. Indians are known to have camped 
at Union lake, in Greenvale, near Dundas, near Dennison, and 
in many other places. As many as several hundred are known 
to have camped at one time east of Dundas. There is no reason 
to doubt that fancy, or some definite cause brought Indians to 
all parts of this country; hence it is not at all unlikely that pre- 
historic Indians did the same thing. Our inability to find a con- 
clusive reason at present why Indians should camp or build 
mounds in these places is no proof that the mounds are not of 
Indians origin. Should closer study prove the mounds to be 
burial places, then they are witnesses both of the large number 
of Indians buried there, as well as of the much larger number of 
population which was not honored with a monument of earth. 

The groups in the vicinity of Dennison probably indicated 
that somewhere a trail passed from Welch to Prairie creek. 
Thus the southern end of the Stanton flats served as a halting 
place. If a line be drawn from Welch, where the Red Wing 
mounds may be said to end, to Faribault, the line will pass 
through the large groups of mounds at Prairie creek, wherefore 
it is not unreasonable to think that the Indians may have had a 
shorter route in going from Red Wing to Faribault, than that 
presented by the meandering Cannon. A glance at the map of 
Minnesota will show this plainly and also this, that if a person 
wished to go from Red Wing to the buffalo plains of the Dakotas, 
it would be much shorter to go directly to Faribault and thence 
to Mankato instead of making the big detour against the Missis- 
sippi current to St. Paul and thence to Mankato. Between Welch 
and Randolph there are no mounds. If it were not for this gap, 
there would be a practically continuous chain of mounds from 
Red Wing to Faribault. If the Indians had habitually followed 
Prairie creek from its mouth to its source, we might have ex- 
pected to find mounds on the northern end of the flats. For 
some reason they are absent at that place also between Cannon 
Falls and Welch. The latter distance I walked with the express 
purpose of locating mounds for Mr. Brewer, but no mounds 
showed up until I discovered Fort Sweney at Welch. The only 
mound-like structure observed between Randolph and \\ elch 
were a few doubtful elevations south of Cannon Falls on the 
edge of the terrace on the west side of the Cannon. 

I failed to locate mounds in the following places: Dakota 
county: Lakeville, Rosemount, Hampton, Douglass, Randolph, 
Marshan. Rice county : Forest, Hills, Erin, Morristown, Hal- 
cott, and Richland. Goodhue county : Cannon Falls, Warsaw 
(which has only ten on the lowland bordering the Stanton flats), 
Leon and other townships. From Goodhue station to Dennison, 


a distance of 20 miles, not a mound was seen, nor between 
Cannon Falls, Vasa, and Spring Creek, nor between Cannon 
Falls, and Sogn, on the Little Cannon. This valley does not 
seem to have been used as a highway by the Indians. If there 
are any mounds in that valley, they are not easily seen from the 
road. This valley was heavily timbered and less suitable for 
travel than the Stanton flats. A more thorough search in the 
above named places may reveal some mounds. The morainic 
area in Rice and Dakota counties appears to be strikingly de- 
ficient in mounds. Perhaps the rough and hilly country covered 
with the big Minnesota woods made it unfavorable as a highway 
for travel. The Minnesota valley west, and the Cannon east of 
the hills were much more suitable for trails. But why should 
not mounds have been formed in these localities by natural 
agencies or otherwise if the mounds under discussion were not 
built by Indians? 

The distribution of the mounds seems to be governed by the 
river courses and their tributaries and by the wide open stretches 
of country. The absence of large mounds indicates that with Red 
Wing, Spring Creek, Cannon Junction, Welch, and other places 
along the Mississippi as headquarters the Indians resorted to 
the other localities for temporary purposes, possibly in their 
hunting trips to Iowa and Dakota. From Faribault they could 
strike south into Steele, Mower and Freeborn counties. These 
counties contain at least some mounds like those under discus- 
sion. In the morainic area in Iowa between Fertile and Forest 
City, Winnebago county, not a mound was seen. 

Other roads passed over without noticing any mounds are : 
From Shieldville to Fox lake, to Circle lake, Union lake, Hazel- 
wood, Eidsvold, Rice lake, Prairie lake: from Wheatland to 
Millcrburgh ; from Faribault to Warsaw and Morristown ; be- 
tween Empire, Vermillion and Hastings; between Trout Brook, 
White Rock and Cannon Falls; between Kenyon, Prairieville. 
and Cannon City; Dennison, Hague and Kenyon, also hundreds 
of miles of other roads. The absence of mounds in all these 
places seems to prove conclusively that the di>eussed mounds 
are not the result of natural forces, nor of animals, both of which 
operated on otherwise similar localities and failed to produce 
mounds. Some other explanation must be sought why the 
mounds are where they are and why they are absent from other 
similar places. 

Since writing the above 1 met a lady whose father settled 
on the Grcenvale meadow about 45 years ago. This man found 
a number of arrows in this mound dotted territory. These 
arrows arc the only artificial Indian relics which 1 have seen as 
positive proof that the Indians were actually near the mounds 


The fact that much of the land is not plowed but is used for 
pasturage and hay meadows, makes the locating of village sites 
very difficult. 

In the absence of any better explanation, we may tentatively 
accept the following conclusions : (1) These mounds belong to 
the provinces of archaeology. (2) The larger valleys and their 
watercourses have played a large role in the distribution of the 
mounds by attracting Indians more powerfully than did other 
localities. (3) Hence the distribution of the mounds in groups 
or strings along these water courses is such that the law of ar- 
rangement governing these is in perfect harmony with the law 
governing the general arrangement of mounds along the water- 
ways in other parts of the country where we know that Indians 
lived and built mounds. This law is a natural accommodation 
of the territory and material in a place where a mound building 
Indian, having once settled for some reason, wanted to build 
mounds. A glance at charts showing mounds will make this 

If these deductions are true, as they seem to be, then the key 
to unlock the problem of this peculiar type of mounds is this 
that these mounds are the products of human activity in prehis- 
toric times and present us with a new and unexpected phase in 
the mound builders choice of location for mounds. To a person 
accustomed to seeing large effigy mounds in Wisconsin, or 
other larger mounds along the Mississippi, it would naturally 
be a puzzle to find mounds in a location where his former ex- 
perience would not have prompted him to look for mounds. 
The unexpected may also turn up in the experience of the mound- 
hunter, and there is nothing unreasonable in thinking that these 
mounds are another link in the chain of Minnesota archeology 
throwing light on the life of the prehistoric builders. It merely 
shows that Indians built mounds also in other places than on 
high terraces and shores. 

But should further study ever show that these mounds are 
not the work of wandering savages, then they ought to be ac- 
corded a place in that science whose province it will be to ex- 
plain them. So far I have utterly failed to find any adequate 
cause or principle mentioned in geology, biology, or physiog- 
raphy, which will explain all of these in all places. If these 
mounds were not built by Indians, then it may be that in any 
other mounds now reckoned as Indians mounds may also be 
explained by the action of some other agency. 



Early Claims of Title — Spain, France and England — Treaties and 
Agreements — The Louisiana Purchase — Indiana — Louisiana 
District — Louisiana Territory — Missouri Territory — North- 
west Territory — Illinois Territory — Michigan Territory — 
Wisconsin Territory — Iowa Territory — No Man's Land — 
Sibley in Congress — Minnesota Territory — Minnesota State 
— Compiled from Manuscripts of Hon. F. M. Crosby. 

The history of the early government of what is now southern 
Minnesota, is formulated with some difficulty, as, prior to the 
nineteenth century, the interior of the county was so little 
known, and the maps upon which claims and grants were founded 
were so meagre, as well as incorrect and unreliable, that descrip- 
tions of boundaries and locations as given in the early treaties 
are vague in the extreme, and very difficult of identification with 
present day lines and locations. 

The Hon. J. V. Brower, a scholarly authority upon this sub- 
ject, says — ("The Mississippi River and Its Sources") : "Spain, 
by virtue of the discoveries of Columbus and others, confirmed 
to her by papal grant (that of Alexander VI, May 4. 1493), may 
be said to have been the first European owner of the entire 
valley of the Mississippi, but she never took formal possession 
of this part of her domains other than that incidentally involved 
in I)e Soto's doings. The feeble objections which she made in 
the next two centuries after the discovery, to other nations ex- 
ploring and settling North .America, were successfully overcome 
by the force of accomplished facts. The name of Florida, now 
so limited in its application, was first applied by the Spaniards 
to the greater part of the eastern half of North America, com- 
mencing at the Gulf of Mexico and proceeding northward indefi- 
nitely. This expansiveness of geographical view was paralleled 
later by the definition of a New France of still greater extent, 
which practically included all the continent. 

"L'Escarbot, in his historj of New France, written in lol~, 
says, in reference to this: 'Thus our Canada has for its limits 
On the west side the lands as far as the si a called the P 
on this side of the Tropic of Cancer; on the south the islands of 
the \tlantic sea in the direction of Cuba and the Spanish land; 



on the east the northern sea which bathes New France ; and on 
the north the land said to be unknown, toward the icy sea as far 
as the arctic pole.' 

"Judging also by the various grants to individuals, noble and 
otherwise, and 'companies,' which gave away the country in 
latitudinal strips extending from the Atlantic westward, the 
English were not far behind the Spaniards and French in this 
kind of effrontery. As English colonists never settled on the 
Mississippi in pursuance of such grants, and never performed 
any acts of authority there, such shadowy sovereignties may be 
disregarded here, in spite of the fact that it was considered neces- 
sary, many years later, for various states concerned to convey 
to the United States their rights to territory which they never 
owned or ruled over. 

"Thus, in the most arbitrary manner, did the Mississippi river, 
though yet unknown, become the property, successively, of the 
Iberian, Gaulish and Anglo-Saxon races — of three peoples who, 
in later times, by diplomacy and force of arms, struggled for an 
actual occupancy. Practically, however, the upper Mississippi 
valley may be considered as having been in the first place. 
Canadian soil, for it was Frenchmen from Canada who first vis- 
ited it and traded with its various native inhabitants. The 
further prosecution of his discoveries by La Salle, in 1682, ex- 
tended Canada as a French possession to the Gulf of Mexico, 
though he did not use the name of Canada nor yet that of New 
France. He preferred to call the entire country watered by the 
Mississippi river and its tributaries, from its uttermost source 
to its mouth, by the new name he had already invented for the 
purpose — Louisiana. The name of Canada and New France 
had been indifferently used to express about the same extent of 
territory, but the name of Louisiana now came to supersede 
them in being applied to the conjectural regions of the west. 
Although La Salle has applied the latter expression to the entire 
valley of the Mississippi, it was not generally used in that sense 
after his time, the upper part of the region was called Canada, 
and the lower Louisiana; but the actual dividing line between 
the two provinces was not absolutely established, and their 
names and boundaries were variously indicated on published 
maps. Speaking generally, the Canada of the eighteenth century 
included the Great Lakes and the country drained by their trib- 
utaries; the northern one-fourth of the present state of Illinois, 
that is, as much as lies north of the mouth of the Ruck river; all 
the regions lying north of the northern watershed of the Mis 
souri, and finally, the valley of the upper Missouri itself." This 
would include Rice and Steele counties. 

But it is now necessary to go back two centuries previous 


and consider the various explorations of the Mississippi upon 
which were based the claims of the European monarchs. Pos- 
sibly the mouth of the Mississippi had been reached by Span- 
iards previous to 1541, possibly Hibernian missionaries as early 
as the middle of the sixth century, or Welch emigrants (Madoc), 
about 1170, discovered North America by way of the Gulf of 
Mexico, but historians give to Hernando de Soto and his band 
of adventurers the credit of having been the first white men to 
actually view the Mississippi on its course through the interior 
of the continent and of being the first ones to actually traverse its 
waters. De Soto sighted the Mississippi in May, 1541, at the 
head of an expedition in search of gold and precious stones. In 
the following spring, weary with hope long deferred, and worn 
out with his adventures, De Soto fell a victim to disease, and 
died May 21, 1541. His followers, greatly reduced in number by 
sickness, after wandering about in a vain searching, built three 
small vessels and descended to the mouth of the Mississippi, 
being the first white men to reach the outlet of that great river 
from the interior. However, they were too weary and discour- 
aged to lay claim to the country, and took no notes of the region 
through which they passed. 

May 13, 1673, Jaques Marquette and Louis Joliet, the former 
a priest, and the latter the commander of the expedition, set out 
with five assistants, and on June 17, of the same year reached 
the Mississippi at the present site of Prairie du Chien, thence 
continuing down the river as far as the mouth of the Illinois, 
which they ascended; subsequently reaching the lakes. 

La Salle, however, was the first to lay claim to the entire 
valley in the name of his sovereign. After achieving perpetual 
fame by the discovery of the Ohio river (1670-71), he conceived 
the plan of reaching the Pacific by way of the northern Missis- 
sippi (at that time unexplored and supposed to be a waterway 
connecting the two oceans). Frontenac, then governor-general 
of Canada, favored the plan, as did the King of France. Ac- 
cordingly, gathering a compan) of Frenchmen, lie pursued his 
way through the lakes, made a portage to the Illinois river, and 
January 4, 1680, reached what is now Peoria, 111. From there, 
in 1680, he sent Hennepin and two companions to explore the 
Upper Mississippi. During this voyage Hennepin, and the men 
accompanying him. were taken by the Indians as far north as 
Mille Lacs. Needing reinforcement-. I .a Salle again returned 
to Canada. In January, 1682. with a band of followers, he 
started on his third and greatest expedition. February 6, the) 
reached the Mississippi by way of Lake Michigan and the Illi- 
nois river, and March (>. discovered the three great passages b) 
which the river discharges its waters into the Gulf. Two days 


later they reascended the river a short distance, to find a high 
spot out of the reach of inundations, and there erected a column 
and planted a cross, proclaiming with due ceremony the authority 
of the King of France. Thus did the whole Mississippi valley 
pass under the nominal sovereignty of the French monarchs. 

The first definite claim to the upper Mississippi is embodied 
in a paper, still preserved, in the Colonial Archives of France, 
entitled "The record of the taking possession, in his Majesty's 
name, of the Bay des Puants (Green bay), of the lake and 
rivers of the Outagamis and Maskoutins (Fox rivers and Lake 
Winnebago), of the river Ouiskonche (Wisconsin), and that of 
the Mississippi, the country of the Nadouesioux (the Sioux or 
Dakota Indians), the rivers St. Croix and St. Pierre (Minnesota), 
and other places more remote, May 8, 1689." (E. B. O'Callahan's 
translation in 1855, published in Vol. 9, page 418, "Documents 
Relating to the Colonial History of the State of New York.") 
This claim was made by Perrot, and the proclamation was issued 
from Fort St. Antonie (Anthony) near the present site of Trem- 

The previous proclamations of St. Lusson in 1671 at the out- 
let of Lake Superior, of De Luth, in 1679, at the west end of 
the same lake and at Mille Lacs, had no definite bearing on the 
land now embraced in Dakota county, but nevertheless strength- 
ened the French claims of sovereignty. 

For over eight decades thereafter, the claims of France were, 
tacitly at least, recognized in Europe. In 1763 there came a 
change. Of this change, A. N. Winchell (in Vol. 10, "Minnesota 
Historical Society Collections") writes : "The present eastern 
boundary of Minnesota, in part (that is, so far as the Missis- 
sippi now forms its eastern boundary), has a history beginning 
at a very early date. In 1763, at the end of that long struggle 
during which England passed many a mile post in her race for 
world empire, while France lost nearly as much as Britain gained 
— that struggle, called in America the French and Indian War — 
the Mississippi river became an international boundary. The 
articles of the definite treaty of peace wefe signed at Paris, on 
February 10, 1763. The seventh article made the Mississippi, 
from its source to about the 31st degree of north latitude, the 
boundary between the English colonies on this continent and 
the French Louisiana. The text of the article is as follows: 
(Published in the "Gentleman's Magazine," Vol. 33, pages 121- 
126, March, 1763.) 

"VII. In order to re-establish peace on solid and durable 
foundations, and to remove forever all subjects of dispute to the 
limits of the British and French territories on the continent of 
America; — that for the future, the confines between the domains 


of his Britannic Majesty and those of his most Christian Majesty 
(the King of France) in that part of the world, shall be fixed 
irrevocably by a line drawn down the middle of the river Missis- 
sippi, from its source to the river Iberville, and from thence, by 
a line drawn along the middle of this river, and the Lake Maurc- 
pas and Pontchartrain, to the sea." The boundary from the 
source of the river further north, or west, or in any direction, 
was not given ; it was evidently supposed that it would be of no 
importance, for many centuries, at least. 

This seventh article of the definite treaty was identical with 
the sixth article in the preliminary treaty of peace signed by 
England, Spain and France, at Fontainebleau, November 3, 1762. 
On that same day, November 3, 1762, the French and Spanish 
representatives had signed another act by which the French king 
"ceded to his cousin of Spain, and his successors forever * * * 
all the country known by the name of Louisiana, including New 
Orleans and the island on which that city is situated." This 
agreement was kept secret, but when the definite treaty was 
signed at Paris the following year, this secret pact went into 
effect, and Spain at once became the possessor of the area 

At the close of the Revolutionary war, the territory east of 
the Mississippi, and north of the 31st parallel, passed under the 
jurisdiction of the United States. By the definite treaty of peace 
between the United States and Great Britain, ratified at Paris. 
September 3, 1783, a part of the northern boundary of the United 
States, and the western boundary thereof was established, as 
follows: Commencing at the most northwestern point of the 
Lake of the Woods and from thence on a due course west to the 
Mississippi river (the Mississippi at that time was thought to 
extend into what is now Canada), thence by a line to be drawn 
along the middle of said Mississippi river until it shall intersect 
the northernmost part of the 31st degree of north latitude. (U. S. 
Statutes at Large, Vol. 8, page 82.) 

In 1800, by the secret treaty of San (or Saint) lldefonso, 
(signed October 1), Spain receded the indefinite tract west of tin 
Mississippi to France, which nation did nut, however, take 
formal possession until three years later. Napoleon, for France. 
sold the tract to the United Slate-. April 30, 1803. The region 
comprehended in the "Louisiana Purchase," as this area was 
called, included all the countrj west of the Mississippi, excepl 
those portions west of the Rock) Mountain- actually occupied 1>\ 
Spain, and extended as far north a- the British territory. 

By an act of Congress, approved October 31. 1803, the presi 
(Kin of the United State- was authorized to take possession of 
this territory, the act providing that "all the military, civil, and 


judicial powers exercised by the officers of the existing govern- 
ment, shall be vested in such person and persons, and shall be 
exercised in such manner as the president of the United States 
shall direct." (United States Statutes at Large, Vol. 2, page 245.) 

December 20, 1803. Louisiana was formally turned over to 
the United States at New Orleans, by M. Laussat, the civil agent 
of France, who a few days previous (November 30) had received 
a formal transfer from representatives of Spain. 

Louisiana District. By an act of Congress, approved March 
26, 1804, all of that portion of the country ceded by France to the 
United States under the name of Louisiana, lying south of the 
33rd degree of north latitude, was organized as the territory of 
Orleans and all the residue thereof was organized as the district 
of Louisiana. That act contained the following provision : "The 
executive power now vested in the government of the Indiana 
territory shall extend to and be exercised in said district of 
Louisiana. The governor and judges of the Indiana territory 
shall have power to establish in said district of Louisiana, in- 
ferior courts and prescribe their jurisdiction and duties and to 
make all laws which they may deem conducive to the good gov- 
ernment of all the inhabitants thereof." (United States Statutes 
at Large, Vol. 2, page. 287). The area set off as the territory of 
Orleans was admitted as the state of Louisiana in 1812. 

Louisiana Territory. By an act of Congress approved March 
3, 1805, all that part of the country embraced in the district of 
Louisiana, was organized as a territory, called the territory of 
Louisiana. The executive power of that territory was vested in 
a governor and the legislative power in the governor and three 
judges, appointed by the president, who were given power to 
establish inferior courts, and to prescribe their jurisdiction and 
duties, and to make laws which they might deem conductive to 
the good government of the inhabitants thereof, which laws 
were to be reported to the president to be laid before Congress 
which, if disapproved by Congress, should henceforth cease and 
be of no effect. (U. S. Statutes at Large, Vol. 2, page 331.) 

Missouri Territory. By an act of Congress approved June 4. 
1812, it was provided that the territory hitherto called Louisiana 
should be called Missouri, and was organized as a territory. The 
executive power of the newly organized Missouri territory was 
vested in a governor, and the legislative power in a general as- 
sembly consisting of the governor, a legislative council and a 
house of representatives. The legislative council consisted of 
nine members, whose term was five years unless sooner removed 
by the president of the United States. These members were re- 
quired to be the owners of 200 acres of land in the territory. The) 
were appointed by the president and were required to be selected 


by him from eighteen persons nominated by the representatives. 
The house of representatives consisted of thirteen members, 
elected at the first election from districts designated by the 
governor. (U. S. Statutes at Large, Vol. 2, page 743.) By an 
act of Congress approved April 29, 1816, the members of the 
legislative council were required to be elected by the electors 
and consisted of one from each county in the territory. (U. S. 
Statutes at Large, Vol. 3, page 328.) 

The struggles in Congress which led to the Missouri Com- 
promise; the agreement that all territory west of Missouri and 
north of parallel 36° 36' should forever be free from the curse of 
slavery, and the final admission of Missouri with her present 
boundaries, by presidential proclamation, August 10, 1821, are 
outside of the province of this history. Sufficient is it to say 
here that this admission left the land to the northward, including 
Dakota county, without a fountain head of territorial govern- 
ment from that date until June 28, 1834, when it was attached to 

It is now necessary to turn to the events that had been tran- 
spiring in regard to the government of the area east of the Missis- 
sippi and northwest of the Ohio river. 

The Northwest Territory embraced all the area of the United 
States northwest of the Ohio river. By the provisions of the 
famous "Northwest Ordinance," passed July 13, 1787. by the 
Congress of the Confederation (the constitution of the United 
States not being adopted until September 17), the Ohio river 
became the boundary of the territory. The fifth article of the 
ordinance reads as follows: "Art. 5. There shall be formed in 
the said (i. e., the Northwest) territory, not less than three, nor 
more than five states," '**** the western state in the said ter- 
ritory shall be bounded by the Mississippi, the Ohio and the Wa- 
bash rivers; a direct line drawn from the Wabash and Post Vin- 
cents, due north, to the territorial line between the United States 
and Canada; and by the said territorial line to the Lake of the 
Woods and the Mississippi. (See Executive Documents. 3rd ses- 
sion, 46th Congress, 1880-81, Vol. 25, Doc. 47, Part 4, pages 153- 
156; also United States Statutes at Large, Vol. 1, page 51. note 
a.) It might here be noted, that the latter reference, while hav- 
ing no immediate bearing on Rice and Steele counties, will repay 
the thoughtful reader for the most diligenl perusal. 

The officers of this territory were to be appointed by Con- 
gress. The governor was to serve for a term of three years, 
and it was provided that he should reside in the district and have 
a freehold estate of 1,000 acres of land while in the exercise of his 
office. The secretary was to serve for a term of four years, and 


it was specified that he should reside in the district and have 
a freehold estate therein of 500 acres of land while in the exercise 
of his office. The court was to consist of three judges, any two 
of whom could form a court "who shall have common law juris- 
diction and reside in the district, and have each therein, a free- 
hold estate of 500 acres of land while in exercise of their offices, 
and their commissions shall continue in force during good be- 

"The governor and judges or a majority of them, shall adopt 
and publish in the district such laws of the original states, crimi- 
nal and civil, as may be necessary and best suited to the circum- 
stances of the district and report them to congress from time 
to time until the organization of the general assembly therein, 
unless disapproved of by congress, but afterward, the legisla- 
ture shall have the authority to alter them as they shall think fit. 

"Previous to the organization of the general assembly, the 
governor shall appoint such magistrates and other civil officers 
in each county or township, as he shall find necessary, for the 
preservation and good order of the same." 

The governor was given power to establish counties and town- 
ships. In the words of the act: "So soon as there shall be 5,000 
free male inhabitants of full age in the district, upon giving proof 
thereof to the governor, they shall receive authority, with time 
and place, to elect representatives from their counties or town- 
ship to represent them in the general assembly." 

There was to be one representative for every 500 free male 
inhabitants progressively until the number should amount to 
twenty-five members, after which the representation was to be 
regulated by the legislature. To quote again : "The general 
assembly or legislature shall consist of the governor, legislative 
council, and the house of representatives. The legislative council 
shall consist of five members, to continue in office five years, 
unless sooner removed by congress." The members of the coun- 
cil were to be nominated by the representatives, who were to 
meet and name ten persons, out of which congress was to select 
the five who should serve. (See Compact.) August 17, 1789, the 
president was substituted for congress in the exercise of some of 
the powers conferred upon it. (See also Act of Congress ap- 
proved May 8, 1792.) 

Indiana Territory. The ordinance of 1787 provided for the 
organization of three "states" out of the Northwest Territory. 
That same year the Constitution of the United States was 
adopted. In 1799, Ohio organized a territorial government, but 
the middle and western "states" did not have, separately, suffi- 
cient population to warrant the establishment of two separate 
governments. Congress solved the difficulty by uniting the two 


under the name of Indiana. The act was passed May 7, 1800, and 
its first section reads as follows : "Section 1 — Be it enacted, etc., 
that from and after the fourth day of July next, all that part of 
the territory of the United States, northwest of the Ohio river, 
which lies to the westward of a line beginning at the Ohio, oppo- 
site the mouth of the Kentucky river, and running thence to 
Fort Recovery, and thence north until it shall intersect the terri- 
torial line between the United States and Canada, shall, for the 
purpose of temporary government, constitute a separate terri- 
tory, and be called the Indiana Territory." (U. S. Statutes at 
Large, Vol. 2, page 58.) 

Section 2 of this article provided: "There shall be estab- 
lished within said territory a government in all respects similar 
to that provided by the ordinance of congress, passed on the 
13th day of July, 1787, for the government of the territory north- 
west of the Ohio river; and the inhabitants thereof shall be en- 
titled to and enjoy all rights, privileges and advantages granted 
and secured to the people by said ordinance." The officers of the 
territory were to be appointed by the president. 

Section 4 provided : "That so much of the ordinance for the 
government of the territory of the United States, northwest 
of the Ohio river, as relates to the organization of a general 
assembly therein, and prescribes the power thereof, shall be in 
force and operation in the Indiana territory, wherever satisfac- 
tory evidence shall be given to the governor thereof that such 
is the wish of a majority of the freeholders, notwithstanding there 
may not be therein 5.000 free male inhabitants of the age of 
twenty-one years and upward. Provided, that until there shall 
be 5,000 free male inhabitants of twenty-one years of age and up- 
wards in said territory the whole number of representatives to 
the general assembly shall not be less than seven nor more than 
nine, to be apportioned by the governor to the several counties 
in the said territory agreeably to the number of free males of the 
age of twenty-one years and upwards which they may respeel 
ively contain." Indiana was admitted as a state in 1816. 

Michigan Territory. By an act of congress passed June 11. 
1805, Michigan territory was formed. The boundaries were de 
scribed as follows: "All that part of the Indiana territory which 
lies north of a line drawn east in 'in the southerly bend or extreme 
of Lake Michigan until it shall intersect Lake Erie, and east 
of a line drawn from the said southerly bend through the middle 
(if said lake to its northern extremity, and thence due north to the 
northern boundary of the United States, shall for the purpose of 
temporar) governmenl constitute a separate territory, to be 
called Michigan, it". S. Statutes at Large, Vol 2, page 309 


Additions, noted further along in this article, were later made to 
this territory. 

Illinois Territory. In 1809, settlers had come in so fast that 
there were sufficient citizens in Indiana territory to support two 
governments. Accordingly, the territory of Illinois was estab- 
lished, February 3, 1809, by the following enactment: "Be it 
enacted, etc., That from and after the first day of March, next, 
all that part of the Indiana territory which lies west of the 
Wabash river and a direct line drawn from the said Wabash 
river and Post Vincennes, due north to the territorial line be- 
tween the United States and Canada, shall for the purpose of 
temporary government constitute a separate territory, and be 
called Illinois. (U. S. Statutes at Large, Vol. 2, page 514.) Illi- 
nois was admitted as a state in 1818. 

Michigan Territory. The population of Illinois continued to 
increase, and the people were eager for a state government. The 
southern portion was therefore granted statehood privileges, and 
the northern portion, mainly unoccupied, was cut off and added 
to the territory of Michigan, previously created. This transfer 
of territory was authorized in section 7 of the act passed April 18, 
1818, enabling Illinois to form a state government and constitu- 
tion. The terms of the act are as follows : "Section 7. And be- 
it further enacted, That all that part of the territory of the 
United States lying north of the state of Indiana, and which was 
included in the former Indiana territory, together with that part 
of the Illinois territory which is situated north of, and not in- 
cluded within the boundaries prescribed by this act (viz., the 
boundaries of the state of Illinois) to the state thereby authorized 
to be formed, shall be and hereby is, attached to and made a 
part of the Michigan territory. Thus matters remained for six- 
teen years. 

Missouri, in the meantime, had been admitted as a state 
(1821), and the territory north of that state, and west of the 
Mississippi, was practically without organized authority from 
that year until 1834, when the increase of settlement made it 
advisable that the benefits of some sort of government should be 
extended to its area. Consequently, Michigan territory was ex- 
tended to include this vast region. The act so enlarging Michi- 
gan territory passed congress June 28, 1834, in the following 
terms: "Be it enacted, etc., That all that part of the territory 
of the United States, bounded on the east by the Mississippi river, 
on the south by the state of Missouri, and a line drawn due west 
from the northwest corner of said state to the Missouri river; on 
the southwest and west by the Missouri river and the White 
Earth river, falling into the same, and on the north by the north- 
ern boundary of the United States, shall be, and hereby is, for the 


purpose of temporary government attached to and made a part 
of, the territory of Michigan." (U. S. Statutes at Large, Vol. 4, 
page 701.) In less than two years, certain territory was set apart 
to form the proposed state of Michigan. This act passed con- 
gress April 20, 1836, but Michigan was not admitted until Jan- 
uary 26, 1837. (U. S. Statutes at Large, Vol. 5, pages 10-16.) 

Wisconsin Territory. When Wisconsin territory was organ- 
ized by an act of Congress, April 20, 1836, all the Louisiana 
purchase north of the state of Missouri was placed under its 
jurisdiction. This included Dakota county. The boundaries as 
given at that time were as follows: "Bounded on the east by a 
line drawn from the northeast corner of the State of Illinois 
through the middle of Lake Michigan to a point in the middle 
of said lake and opposite the main channel of Green Bay and 
through said channel and Green Bay to the mouth of the Me- 
nominee river, thence through the middle of the main channel 
of said river to that head of said river nearest the Lake of the 
Desert, thence in a direct line to the middle of said lake, thence 
through the middle of the main channel of the Montreal river 
to its mouth ; thence with a direct line across Lake Superior to 
where the territorial line of the United States last touches said 
lake, northwest, thence on the north with the said territorial 
line to the White Earth river (located in what is now Wood 
county, North Dakota). On the west by a line from the said 
boundary line, following down the middle of the main channel 
of the White Earth river to the Missouri river, and down the 
middle of the main channel of the Missouri river to a point due 
west from the northwest corner of the state of Missouri ; and 
on the south from said point due east to the northwest corner 
of the state of Missouri, and thence with the boundaries of the 
states of Missouri and Illinois as already fixed by act of congress. 
(U. S. Statutes at Large, Vol. 5. page 18.) It is inter- 
esting to note in this connection that two sessions of the Wis- 
consin territorial legislature were held at what is now Burlington, 

By the act of congress, approved April 20, 1836, from which 
the boundaries have already been quoted, the executive power 
in and over the territory was vested in a governor, appointed by 
the president for a term of three years, whose -alary was $2,500 
a year. He was also superintendent of Indian affairs, and was 
required to approve all laws passed by the legislative assembly. 
The legislative power was vested in a legislative assembly, con- 
sisting of a council and a house of representatives. The council 
was to consist of thirteen members and the house of twenty-six 
members. Representation was to be apportioned at the first 
election, in proportion to population. The time, place and con- 


ducting of the first election was appointed and directed by the 
governor. Every free white male inhabitant who was an inhabi- 
tant of the territory at the time of its organization was entitled 
to vote at the first election, and was eligible to office within the 
territory. The qualifications of voters at subsequent elections 
was made determinable by the legislative assembly. It was 
provided, however, that the right of suffrage should be exercised 
only by citizens of the United States. The governor was re- 
quired to approve all laws passed by the legislative assembly, 
and they were required to be submitted to congress and if dis- 
approved by it, they should be null and of no effect. All the 
then existing laws of the territory of Michigan were extended 
over the territory of Wisconsin, subject to being altered, modi- 
fied or repealed by the governor and legislative assembly. 

It seems that no law could take effect without the approval 
of the governor. By an act of congress, approved March 3, 
1839, the governors of the territories of Iowa and Wisconsin 
were given the veto power, and the council and house of repre- 
sentatives of these territories were given the power to pass bills 
over his veto by a two-thirds vote. 

Iowa Territory. The territory of Iowa was created by the 
act of congress, June 12, 1838, which act divided the territory 
of Wisconsin along the Mississippi river and named the western 
part, Iowa. The act provided : "That from and after the third 
day of July, next, all that part of the present territory of Wis- 
consin which lies west of the Mississippi river and west of a line 
drawn due south from the herd waters or sources of the Mis- 
sissippi to the territorial lines, shall, for the purpose of temporary 
government, be and constitute a separate territorial govern- 
ment, by the name of Iowa." The area now embracing Rice 
and Steele counties were included within these lines. The act 
organizing this territory provided that "the existing laws of the 
territory of Wisconsin shall be extended over said territory so 
far as they are not incompatible with the provisions of this act, 
subject nevertheless to be altered, ratified or repealed by the 
governor and legislative assembly of said territory of Iowa." 
The legislative assembly was composed of the governor, a coun- 
cil of thirteen members, and a house of representatives of twenty- 
six members. The act organizing the territory of Iowa pro- 
vided that "All the laws of the governor and legislative assembly 
shall be submitted to and if disapproved by the congress of the 
United States they shall be null and of no effect." (U. S. 
Statutes at Large, Vol. 5, page 235.) The judicial officers, jus- 
tices of the peace, sheriffs and all militia officers were appointed 
by the governor. The township and county officers were elected 
by the people in the manner described by the laws of the terri- 


tory of Wisconsin. The salary of the governor and the judges 
was fixed at $1,500 each. The jurisdiction of the justices of the 
peace was limited to $50. 

Iowa remained a territory from 1838 to 184G. The greater 
part of southern and southeastern Minnesota was within the 
jurisdiction of Clayton county. Henry H. Sibley was a justice 
of the peace in that county. The county seat was 250 miles 
distant from his home in Mendota, and his jurisdiction extended 
over a region of country, which, as he expressed it, was "as 
large as the Empire of France." A convention of duly author- 
ized representatives of the people remained in session at Iowa 
City from October 7 to November 1, 1844, and framed a state 
constitution. It was provided that the constitution adopted, to- 
gether with any alterations which might subsequently be made 
by congress, should be submitted to the people of the territory 
for their approval or rejection at the township elections in April, 
1845. The boundaries of the proposed new state, as defined in 
the constitution, were as follows : " * * * Thence up in the 
middle of the main channel of the river last mentioned (the 
Missouri) to the mouth of the Sioux or Calumet river; thence 
in a direct line to the middle of the main channel of the St. 
Peter's (Minnesota) river, where the Watonwan river — accord- 
ing to Nicollet's map — enters the same, thence down the middle 
of the main channel of said river to the middle of the Mississippi 
river; thence down the middle of said river to the place of begin- 
ning." This would have included in the state of Iowa, Rice and 
Steele counties, and in fact, all the counties of what is now Min- 
nesota that lie south and east of the Minnesota as far as Man- 
kato, including Faribault county and nearly all of Martin, the 
greater part of Blue Earth and portions of Watonwan. Cotton- 
wood and Jackson. 

Congress rejected these boundary lines, and March 3, 1845, 
in ils enabling act, substituted the following description of the 
proposed boundaries: "Beginning at the mouth of the Des 
Moines river, in the middle of the Mississippi; thence by the 
middle of the channel of that river to the parallel of latitude 
passing through the mouth of the Mankato or Blue Earth river; 
thence west along said parallel of latitude to a point where it is 
intersected by a meridian line 17 3 30' west oi the meridian of 
Washington City; thence due south to the northern boundary 
line of the state of Missouri; thence eastwardly following that 
boundary to the point at which the same intersects with the Des 
Moines river; thence l>y the middle of the channel of that river 
to the place of beginning." Thus the southern boundary 
Minnesota would have been on a line due east From the present 
citi of Mankato to the Mississippi river and due west from the 


same point to a point in Brown county. This would have in- 
cluded in Iowa all but a small fraction of the counties of Winona, 
Olmsted, Dodge, Steele, Waseka and Blue Earth, portions of 
Brown, Watonwan and Martin ; and all of Faribault, Freeborn, 
Mower, Fillmore and Houston. This reduction in its proposed 
territory was not pleasing to those citizens of Iowa who wished 
the state to have its boundaries to include the Minnesota river 
from the Blue Earth to the Mississippi and the Mississippi from 
the Minnesota river to the Missouri state line. This changing in 
the boundary was really a political measure, a part of those bat- 
tles in congress over free and slave states, which preceded the 
Civil War. The boundaries as proposed by congress were re- 
jected by the people of Iowa after a bitter campaign. August 
4, 1846, congress passed a second enabling act, which was ac- 
cepted by the people by a narrow margin of 456, the vote being 
9,492 for to 9,036 against. This second act placed the northern 
boundary of Iowa still further south, but added territory to the 
west. The northern boundary of Iowa, as described in the en- 
abling act, was identical with the parallel of 43 30' north, from 
the Big Sioux river eastward to the Mississippi. This, with the 
exception of the short distance from the Big Sioux river to the 
present western boundary of Minnesota, is the present southern 
boundary of our state. Minnesota's southern boundary, as thus 
described, was carefully surveyed and marked within six years 
of its acceptance by Iowa. The work was authorized March 3, 
1849, and two appropriations of $15,000 each were soon made. 
The survey was completed during the years 1849 to 1852, at a 
total cost of $32,277.73. Although the work was done with the 
best instruments then known, an error of twenty-three chains, 
evidently due to carelessness, was discovered within a year. 
Iowa was admitted as a state December 28, 1846. 

Wisconsin State. Wisconsin soon wished to become a state. 
The northwestern boundary provoked considerable discussion 
both in congress and in the two constitutional conventions which 
were called. There were some who wished to include all the 
remaining portion of the northwest territory within the boun- 
daries of the new proposed state. The two prevailing coteries, 
however, were the ones between whom the fight really centered. 
One body wished the northwestern boundary of the new state 
(Wisconsin) to extend up the Mississippi as far as the Rum 
river, where the city of Anoka is now situated, thence north- 
eastwardly to the first rapids of the St. Louis river and thence 
to Lake Superior. The residents of the St. Croix valley, and 
those living on the east side of the Mississippi, between the St. 
Croix and the Rum river, constituted the other party and objected 
to being included in the proposed state of Wisconsin. They 


declared that they were separated from the settled portions of 
Wisconsin by hundreds of miles of barren land, and still more 
greatly separated by a difference in the interests and character 
of the inhabitants. They proposed that the northwest boundary 
of the new state should be a line drawn due south from Shag- 
wamigan bay, on Lake Superior, to the intersection of the main 
Chippewa river, and from thence down the middle of said river 
to its debouchure into the Mississippi. Residents of the district 
affected and also about Fort Snelling and on the west bank of 
the Mississippi further up joined in a memorial to congress, 
citing the grave injustice that would be done the proposed terri- 
tory of Minnesota if it were left without a single point on the 
Mississippi below St. Anthony's falls, the limit of navigation. 
Among those who signed this memorial were H. H. Sibley and 
Alexander Faribault. The result of the controversy was a com- 
promise adopting a middle line along the St. Croix and St. Louis 

The enabling act for the state of Wisconsin, approved August 
6, 1846, provided: "That the people of the territory of Wisconsin 
be and they are hereby authorized to form a constitution and 
state government * * * with the following boundaries, to 
wit * * * thence through the center of Lake Superior to 
the mouth of the St. Louis river, thence up the main channel of 
said river to the first rapids in the same, above the Indian village, 
according to Nicollet's map ; thence due south to the main branch 
of the River St. Croix; thence down the main channel of said 
river to the Mississippi; thence down the main channel of said 
river to the northwest corner of the state of Illinois, thence due 
east * * * " This is the first and incidentally the present 
description of Minnesota's eastern boundary. ( United States 
Statutes at Large, Vol. 9, page 56.) 

The convention that framed the constitution of Wisconsin in 
1847-48 strongly desired the Rum river as their eastern boundary. 
After accepting the boundary chosen by congress the convention 
recommended a line which, if agreeable to congress, should re- 
place the one in the enabling act. The proposed boundary, which 
was rejected, was described as follows: Leaving the aforesaid 
boundary line at the first rapids of the St. Louis river, thence in 
a direct line, bearing southwest wardly to the mouth of the Isko- 
dewabo or Rum river, where the same empties into the Missis- 
sippi river, thence down the main channel of the said Mississippi 
river to the aforesaid boundary. (Charters and Constitutions of 
the United States, Part ii, page 2030.) 

Minnesota Territory. The events which led up to the estab- 
lishing of Minnesota as a territory can be given but brief men- 
tion here Sufficienl is il to say that for three years after the 


admission of Iowa (in 1846) the area that is now Minnesota, 
west of the Mississippi, was practically a no-man's land. Decem- 
ber 18, 1846, Morgan L. Martin, delegate from Wisconsin terri- 
tory, gave notice to the house of representatives that "at an early 
day" he would ask leave to introduce a bill establishing the ter- 
ritorial government of Minnesota. The name, which is the 
Indian term for what was then the river St. Peter (Pierre) and 
has now become its official designation was, it is believed, ap- 
plied to the proposed territory at the suggestion of Joseph R. 
Brown. During its consideration by congress the bill under- 
went various changes. As reported back to the house, the name 
"Minnesota" had been changed by Stephen A. Douglas to 
"Itasca." Mr. Martin immediately moved that the name "Min- 
nesota" be placed in the bill in place of "Itasca." "Chippewa," 
"Jackson" and "Washington" were also proposed. After many 
motions, counter motions and amendments, "Minnesota" was 
placed in the bill, and with a minor change passed the house. In 
the senate it was rejected. A second attempt was made two 
years later. January 10, 1848, Stephen A. Douglas gave due 
notice to the senate that "at a future day" he would introduce 
a bill to establish the territory of Minnesota. He brought in the 
bill February 23, It was several times read, was amended, re- 
ferred to committee and discussed, but congress adjourned 
August 14 without taking ultimate action on the proposition. 

In the meantime Wisconsin was admitted to the Union May 
29, 1848, and the western half of what was then St. Croix county 
was left outside the new state. The settled portions of the area 
thus cut off from Wisconsin by its admission to statehood privi- 
leges were in the southern part of the peninsula of land lying 
between the Mississippi and the St. Croix. 

The people of this area were now confronted with a serious 
problem. As residents of the territory of Wisconsin they had 
enjoyed the privileges of citizenship in the United States. By 
the creation of the state of Wisconsin they were disfranchised 
and left without the benefits of organized government. Thus, 
Stillwater, which had been the governmental seat of a growing 
county, was left outside the pale of organized law. Legal minds 
disagreed on the question of whether the minor civil officers, 
such as justices of the peace, created under the territorial organi- 
zation, were still qualified to exercise the authority of their posi- 
tions. At a meeting held at St. Paul, in July, 1848, the citizens 
of that (then) village considered the necessity for the formation 
of a new territory. August 5 a meeting of citizens of the area 
west of the St. Croix was held at Stillwater, and it was decided 
to call a general convention at that place, August 26, 1848, for 
a three-fold purpose: 1 — To elect a territorial delegate to con- 


gress. 2 — To organize a territory with a name other than Wis- 
consin. 3 — To determine whether the laws and organization of 
the old territory of Wisconsin were still in effect now that a 
part of that territory was organized as a state. In the call for 
this meeting, the signers called themselves, "We, the undersigned 
citizens of Minnesota territory." The meeting was held pursu- 
ant to the call. Action was taken in regard to the first proposi- 
tion by the election of H. H. Sibley, who was authorized to pro- 
ceed to Washington and use such efforts as were in his power to 
secure the organization of the territory of Minnesota. In regard 
to the second proposition a memorial was addressed to the presi- 
dent of the United States, stating the reasons why the organiza- 
tion of Minnesota territory was necessary. The third proposi- 
tion presented technical points worthy of the attention of the 
wisest legal minds. The state of Wisconsin had been organized, 
but the territory of Wisconsin had not been abolished. Was not, 
therefore, the territory still in existence, and did not its organi- 
zation and its laws still prevail in the part of the territory that 
had not been included in the state? If territorial government 
was in existence would it not give the residents thereof a better 
standing before the nation in their desire to become Minnesota 
territory? Might not this technicality give the delegate a seat 
in congress when otherwise he must, as simply the representative 
of an unorganized area, make his requests in the lobby and to the 
individual members? John Catlin, who had been secretary of 
the territory of Wisconsin before the organization of that state, 
declared that the territory still existed in the area not included 
in the organized state and that he was the acting governor. Ac- 
cordingly, the people of the cut-off portion organized as the 
"Territory of Wisconsin," and named a day for the election of a 
delegate. In the closely contested election, held October 30, 
1848, Sibly won out against Henry M. Rice and accordingly made 
his way to Washington, technically from the "Territory of Wis- 
consin," actually as a representative of the proposed territory of 
Minnesota. As a matter of fact, indeed, Sibley, living at Mcn- 
dota, had ceased to be a citizen of the territory of Wisconsin in 
1838, when Iowa territory was created, and was a resident of 
the part of Iowa territory which the organization of the state of 
Iowa had left without a government, rather than of that territory 
in question (betwoen the Mississippi and the St. Croix) which 
the admission of Wisconsin as a state had left without a govern- 
ment. Sible) was. however, after much Opposition, admitted to 
congress and given a seat January 15. 1849. " c a * once scl about 
securing friends for the proposition to create Minnesota terri- 
tory. December 4. 1848, a few days previous to Sibley's admis- 
sion to congress, Stephen A. Douglas had announced that it was 


his intention to introduce anew a bill to establish the territory 
of Minnesota. Like the previous attempt, this bill underwent 
various vicissitudes. As passed, March 3, 1849, the act creating 
the territory read as follows: "Be it enacted, etc. That from 
and after the passage of this act, all that part of the territory 
of the United States which lies within the following limits, to 
wit : Beginning in the Mississippi river at a point where the 
line of 43 and 30' of north latitude crosses the same, thence 
running due west on said line, which is the northern boundary 
of the state of Iowa, to the northwest corner of the said state of 
Iowa ; thence southerly along the western boundary of said state 
to the point where said boundary strikes the Missouri river; 
thence up the middle of the main channel of the Missouri river 
to the mouth of the White Earth river; thence up the middle 
of the main channel of the White Earth river to the boundary 
line between the possessions of the United States and Great 
Britain ; thence east and south of east along the boundary line 
between the possessions of the United States and Great Britain 
to Lake Superior ; thence in a straight line to the northermost 
point of the state of Wisconsin, in Lake Superior; thence along 
the western boundary of the state of Wisconsin to the Missis- 
sippi river; thence down the main channel of said river to the 
place of beginning, and the same is hereby erected into a tem- 
porary government by the name of the territory of Minnesota. 
The executive power of the territory of Minnesota was vested 
in a governor, appointed by the president, whose term of office 
was four years, unless sooner removed by the president, who 
was also superintendent of Indian affairs. The legislative power 
was vested in a governor and a legislative assembly, consisting 
of a council of nine members, whose term of office was two years, 
and a house of representatives of eighteen members, whose term 
of office was one year. It was provided that the number of 
members in the council and the house might be increased by the 
legislative assembly from time to time in proportion to the in- 
crease in population, but that the whole number should not 
exceed fifteen councillors and thirty-nine representatives. It was 
provided that the first election should be held at such time and 
place and be conducted in such manner as the governor should 
appoint and direct, and that the persons thus elected to the legis- 
lative assembly should meet at such place, and on such day as 
the governor should appoint, but thereafter the time and place 
and manner of holding and conducting all elections by the people, 
and the apportioning the representatives in the several counties 
and districts, to the council and house of representatives, ac- 
cording to the population, should be prescribed by law, as well 
as the day of the commencement of the regular sessions of the 


legislative assembly, but that no session should exceed sixty days. 

Every white male inhabitants above the age of twenty-one. 
who was a resident of the territory at the time of the passage 
of the act, organizing the same, was entitled to vote and eligible 
to office at the first election. But the qualification of voters and 
of holding office at all subsequent elections should be such as 
should be prescribed by the legislative assembly. It was pro- 
vided by the act that all laws passed by the legislative assembly 
should be submitted to congress, and if disapproved by it, should 
be null and of no effect. The laws in force in the territory of 
Wisconsin after the date of the admission of the state of Wis- 
consin were continued to be valid and in operation in the terri- 
tory of Minnesota so far as not incompatible with the provisions 
of the act of organization of the territory of Minnesota, subject 
to be altered, modified or repealed by the governor and legis- 
lative assembly or said territory. All justices of the peace, con- 
stables, sheriffs and all other judicial and ministerial officers 
who were in office within the limits of the territory at the time 
of law organizing the territory was approved were authorized 
and required to continue to exercise and perform the duties of 
their respective offices as officers of the territory of Minnesota 
temporarily and until they, or others, should be appointed and 
qualified in the manner therein described or until their offices 
should be abolished. 

The governor was given the veto power, and the council 
and house could pass a bill over his veto by a two-thirds vote. 
The judicial power of the territory was vested in a supreme court. 
district court, probate court and in justices of the peace. The 
supreme court consisted of a chief justice and two associate 
justices, appointed by the president, whose term of office was 
four years and whose salary was $1,800 a year. 

The territory was by the act of organization required to be 
divided into three judicial districts, and the district court to be 
held therein by one of the judges of the supreme court at such 
times and places as might be prescribed by law, and the judges 
thereof were required to reside in the districts assigned to them. 
The clerks of said courts were appointed by the judges thereof. 

The United States officers of the territory were a governor, 
secretary, chief justice, two associate justices, attorney and mar- 
shal, appointed by the president with the advice and consent of 
tli«' senate of the United States. The governor received a salary 
of $1,500 a year as governor and $1,000 a year as superintendent 
of Indian affairs. The chief justice and associate justices and 
secretary received a salary of $1,800 a year, and the members of 
the legislative assembly $3 a day during their attendance upon 


the sessions thereof and $3 each day for every twenty miles 
traveled going to and returning therefrom. 

State of Minnesota. The people of the territory of Minnesota 
were not lo/ig content with a territorial government. In the 
words of A. N. Winchell, "December 24, 1856, the delegate from 
the territory of Minnesota introduced a bill to authorize the 
people of that territory to form a constitution and state govern- 
ment. The bill limited the proposed state on the west by the 
Red River of the North and the Big Sioux river. It was referred 
to the committee on territories, of which Mr. Grow, of Pennsyl- 
vania, was chairman. January 31, 1857, the chairman reported 
a substitute, which differed from the original bill in no essential 
respect except in regard to the western boundary. The change 
there consisted in adopting a line through Traverse and Big 
Stone lakes, due south from the latter to the Iowa line. The 
altered boundary cut off a narrow strip of territory, estimated 
by Mr. Grow to contain between five and six hundred square 
miles. Today the strip contains such towns as Sioux Falls, 
Watertown and Brookings. The substitute had a stormy voyage 
through congress, especially in the senate, but finally completed 
the trip on February 25, 1857." 

The enabling act, as passed and approved February 26, 1857, 
defined the boundaries of Minnesota as follows: "Be it enacted, 
etc., That the inhabitants of that portion of the territory of 
Minnesota, which is embraced within the following limits, to 
wit: Beginning at the point in the center of the main channel 
of the Red River of the North, where the boundary line be- 
tween the United States and the British possessions crosses the 
same ; thence up the main channel of said river to that of the 
Bois des Sioux river ; thence (up) the main channel of said river 
to Lake Travers ; thence up the center of said lake to the south- 
ern extremity thereof ; thence in a direct line to the head of Big 
Stone lake ; thence through its center to its outlet ; thence by a 
due south line to the north line of the state of Iowa : thence 
east along the northern boundary of said state to the main 
channel of the Mississippi river; thence up the main channel 
of said river and following the boundary line of the state of 
Wisconsin, until the same intersects the St. Louis river; thence 
down said river to and through Lake Superior, on the boundary 
line of Wisconsin and Michigan, until it intersects the dividing 
line between the United States and the British possession ; thence 
up Pigeon river and following said dividing line to the place of 
beginning; be and the same are thereby authorized to form for 
themselves a constitution and state government, by the name of 
the state of Minnesota, and to come into the Union on an equal 


footing with the original states, according to the federal con- 

These houndaries were accepted without change and are the 
boundaries of the state at the present time. The state was 
admitted May 11, 1858. 

It will therefore be seen that the territorial claim of title to 
Rice and Steele counties was first embraced in the papal grant to 
Spain, May 4, 1493. It was then included in the indefinite 
claims made by Spain to lands north, and northwest of her settle- 
ments in Mexico, Florida and the West Indies ; by the English to 
lands west of their Atlantic coast settlements, and by the French 
to lands south, west and southwest of their Canadian settlements. 
The first definite claim to territory now embracing Rice and 
Steele counties was made by La Salle at the mouth of the Missis- 
sippi, March 8, 1682, in the name of the king of France, and the 
second (still more definite) by Perrot near the present site of 
Trempealeau, Wis., May 8, 1689. This was also a French claim. 
France remained in tacit authority until February 10, 1763, when, 
upon England's acknowledging the French authority to lands 
west of the Mississippi, France, by a previous secret agreement, 
turned her authority over to Spain. October 1, 1800, Spain 
ceded the tract to France, hut France did not take formal pos- 
session until November 30, 1803, and almost immediately, De- 
cember 20, 1803, turned it over to the VJnited States, the Amer- 
icans having purchased it from Napoleon April 30 of that year. 

March 26, 1804, the area that is now Rice and Steele counties 
was included in Louisiana district as a part of Indiana and so 
remained until March 3, 1805. From March 3, 1805, to June 4. 
1812, it was a part of Louisiana territory. From June 4, 1812. 
until August 10, 1820, it was a part of Missouri territory. From 
August 10, 1821, until June 28, 1834, it was outside the pale of 
all organized government, except that congress had general 
jurisdiction. From June 28, 1834. to April 20, 1836, it was a part 
of Michigan territory. From April 20. 1836. to June 12. 183S. 
it was a part of Wisconsin territory. From June 12, 1838, to De- 
cember 28, 1846, it was a part of the territory of Iowa and was 
included in the boundaries at first proposed for the state of Iowa. 
From December 28, 1846, to March 3, 1849, it was again without 
territorial affiliation. From March 3. 1849. to May 11, 1858. 
it was a part of Minnesota territory, and on the latter date be- 
came an integral part of that sovereign state. 



Successive Steps by Which the Sioux Indians, Including the 
Wapakootas of Rice and Steele Counties, Relinquished Their 
Claims to the Land of Their Fathers, Thus Opening This 
Vicinity for White Settlement — Prairie du Chien Treaty of 
1825— Treaty of 1830— The Doty Treaty— Treaty of Trav- 
erse des Sioux — Treaty of Mendota — The Wapakoota 

From prehistoric times, up to the treaty of Mendota, in 1851, 
the Wapakoota Indians of the Sioux race remained in possession 
of the area that is now Rice and Steele counties, and were little, 
if any, affected by the changes in sovereignty made by the whites. 
Before this treaty, however, several agreements were made be- 
tween the Sioux Indians and the United States government, in 
regard to mutual relations and the ceding of lands. The Wapa- 
kootas were not as immediately concerned with the earlier agree- 
ments as were the Medawakantons, who lived north of them 
along the Mississippi river. 

Prairie du Chien Treaty of 1825. The treaty of Prairie du 
Chien, signed in 1825, was important to the Sioux living in this 
vicinity, in that it fixed certain boundaries. The eastern boun- 
dary of the Sioux territory was to commence on the east bank 
of the Mississippi, opposite the mouth of the "Ioway" river, run- 
ning back to the bluffs, and along the bluffs to the Bad Ax river ; 
thence to the mouth of Black river, and thence to "half a day's 
march" below the falls of the Chippewa. The boundary lines 
were certainly, in some respects, quite indefinite, and whether 
this was the trouble or not, at any event, it was but a few 
months after the treaty when it was evident that neither the 
Dakotas nor Ojibways were willing to be governed by the lines 
established — and hardly by any others. The first article of the 
treaty provided : "There shall be a firm and perpetual peace 
between the Sioux and the Chippewas ; between the Sioux and 
the confederated tribes of Sacs and Foxes ; and between the 
Iowas and the Sioux." But this provision was more honored in 
the breach than the observance, and in a little time the tribes 
named were flying at one another's throats and engaged in their 
old-time hostilities. On the part of the Sioux this treaty was 



signed by - Vabasha 

Eye. Two Faces. Tah-sah-ghec r », 

ah-na-tah. or "The Charger": Re g, S - 

and Eagle Head, and also by a number 
"principal The Chippewa signers wa - 

Gitche Gaubow, Wis Coup. - g a - 

Second Treaty of Prairie du Cbien Signed in 1830. In 18 

Prairie du Chien. Delegates v r bands 

e Waht a 
the Sissetons. an>! so ft - - 

even from the Omah- 

lree tribes being on the Missour. 
Indian tribes repres f their claims to 1 

in western Iowa, norc: - ri, and esj 

try of the Des Moir. - The lower bands had a 

special a- \ in the trea: 

blood re 

"Tr - bands in council hav<. 

might have permission to bestow upon the ha reeds of then 
nation the tract of land within the follow:- g Be- 

ginning at a place called the Barn, below and near the 
the Red Wing chief, and runr. g 

parallel : th Lake Pepin and tht ssiss i about 

thirty-two miles, to a point opposite Beef, or 0"Bo-. 
thence fifteen n . - • the Grand Encampn 

• -aid. the United States agree 1 
occupy said tract of country, they hoi 
the same manner that other India- 

- :ed to r and 

there was much speculation in them, and 

this history. Th'. - .'.so ceded a I - 

wide along the northern boundary of low:: 

- deration - £2 

The Wapakoot:. 

- - ray Man, Pays for La- 

Maker. V. ag Ii s on the Land. 

- and principal r 
The Doty Treaty. Th 

senate. This tree, iied a Utopian 




of the whites, having a constitutional form of government, with 
a legislature of their own people elected by themselves, the gov- 
ernor to be appointed by the president of the United States. 
much along the plan still followed in the Indian territory, 
except that it embodied for the Indians a much higher type of 
citizenship than is found in the Indian territory. The Indians 
were to be taught the arts of peace, to he paid annuities, and to 
be protected by the armies of the United States from their In- 
dian enemies on the west. In return for these benefits to be con- 
ferred upon the Indians, the United States was to receive all the 
lands in what is now Minnesota, the Dakotas and northwestern 
Iowa, except small portions, which were to be reserved for the 
redmen. This ceded land was for the most part to be opened 
to the settlement of the whites, although the plan was to have 
some of it reserved for Indian tribes from other parts o\ the 
country who should sell their lands to the United States, and 
who, in being moved here, were to enjoy all the privileges which 
had been so beautifully planned for the native Indians. But 
no one can tell what would have been the result of this experi- 
ment, for the senate, for political reasons, refused to ratify the 
treaty, and it failed of going into effect. This treaty was signed 
by the Sisseton, Wahpaton and Wahpakoota bands at Traverse 
des Sioux, July 31, 1841, and by the Medawakanton bands at 
Mendota, August 1 1 of the same year. 

Treaty of Traverse des Sioux. In the spring of 1851 Presi- 
dent Fillmore appointed Governor Alexander Ramsey and Luke 
Lea as commissioners to open negotiations with the Indians for 
the purpose of opening to settlement what is now the greater 
part of Minnesota. The conference was held at Traverse des 
Sioux, between the chiefs and head men of the Sisseton and Wah- 
paton, or Upper Bands, as they were called, and the tw^o com- 
missioners. The Indians were accompanied by their families and 
many prominent pioneers were also present, including William 
G. LeDuc, now of Hastings. The meeting was held under a brush 
arbor erected by Alexis F>ailly, and one of the incidents of the 
proceedings was the marriage of two mixed blood people. David 
Faribault and Nancy Winona McClure, the former the son of 
Jean Baptist Faribault and the latter of Lieutenant James Mc- 
Clure. The treaty was signed July 22, 1851, and provided that 
the upper bands should cede to the United States all their land 
in Iowa as well as theid lands east of a line from the Red river 
to Lake Traverse and thence to the northwestern corner of Iowa. 

Treaty of Mendota. From July 29, 1851, to August 5. Men- 
dota was the scene of the conference which opened Rice, Steele 
and surrounding counties to white settlement. The chiefs and 
head men of the lower bands were thoroughly familiar with the 


proceedings of the Indians and the representatives of the United 
States at Traverse des Sioux and all were on hand that bright 
August day, waiting for the negotiations to open at Mendota. 
The first session was held in the warehouse of the Fur Company 
at that place, but the Indians found the atmosphere stifling, and 
not in accord with their usual method of outdoor councils, so the 
consideration of the treaty was taken up under a large brush 
arbor, erected by Alexis Bailly, on an elevated plain near the high 
prominence known as Pilot Knob. Dr. Thomas Foster was secre- 
tary for Commissioners Lea and Ramsey ; the interpreters were 
Alexander Faribault, Philander Perscott and Rev. G. H. Pond; 
the white witnesses were David Olmsted, W. C. Henderson, 
Alexis Bailly, Richard Chute, Henry Jackson, A. L. Carpenter, 
W. II. Randall. A. S. H. White, H. L.Dousman, Fred C. Sibley, 
Martin McLeod, George X. Faribault and Joseph A. Wheelock. 
On the opening of the first day*s session the object of the gather- 
ing was fully explained to the assembled Indians by the white 
commissioners. For the Indians. Wabasha, of the Medawakan- 
tons, replied as follow>. 

"The chiefs and braves who sit here have heard what you 
have said from our Great Father. I have but one thing to say to 
you, fathers, and then we will separate for the day. I was among 
those who went to Washington and brought home the words of 
our Great Father. Some of those here were there also, and some 
who went are now dead. According to what our Great Father 
then said, we have some funds lying back in his hands. We 
spoke of these funds to our fathers, the commissioners, who were 
here fall before last. These men you see around you are anxious 
to get that which is due them before they do anything. That is 
all I have to say now." 

A chief of the Wapakoota tribe rose and displayed the medal 
formerly worn by Chief Wabde Yah Kapi (War Eagle That May 
Be Seen), who was killed by the Sacs and Foxes on the Des 
Moines river in July. 1849. He said: "My race had four chiefs, 
but they have passed away from us. The last one (War Eagle 
That May Be Seen) was made chief by my father. Governor 
Ramsey, who placed this medal about his neck. Father. I 
to have those who have killed the owner of this medal pa; 
it. The fall before last you spoke of this : the medal was then 
all bloody, and if you will look at it now you will see that it is 
still so. I wish you to wash that blood off. I return it l< 
and if you will wipe off the blood. I will be glad." 

The commissioners reminded the Indians that in regard to 
the money which was due them under the trea por- 

tion of which was being withheld, the treaty provided that it was 
paid to them at the direction and pleasure of the I 


Father, the president; that the Indians had agreed to this when 
they signed the treaty, twelve years previous, and had never com- 
plained before. But Colonel Lea said that if the Indians would 
come to an agreement in regard to the treaty, there would be no 
trouble about the back money. In regard to the medal, which is 
known in history as the bloody medal, owing to the Wapa- 
koota's poetic and figurative allusion to its ensanguined condition, 
Governor Ramsey said that he had demanded from the president 
that $1,000 should be taken from the annuities of the Sacs and 
Foxes and used as an emollient to cleanse the blood from the 
medal; and that SL000 should be taken from the Sac and Fox 
fund for every Sioux killed by them, and the amount turned over 
to the relatives of the victims. He further said that in the exer- 
cise of his discretion, the president had concluded that the monev 
he was keeping ought to be expended in the education of the 
Indian children, but that the matter could be settled amicably if 
the treaty were speedily signed. The next day a brief council was 
held under Alexis Bailly*s large brush arbor, which had been 
well appointed with stands, tables and seats for the chiefs. At 
this session, Wabasha, without comment, returned a draft of the 
treaty which on the previous day had been presented to the 
Indians for their consideration. There was an embarrassing 
silence for a time, and Colonel Lea said he hoped the treaty would 
soon be concluded, for he was at a great distance from his home, 
and having been a long time away, was most anxious to return. 
Chief Wacoota replied : "Our habits are different from those 
of the whites, and when he have anything important to consider 
it takes us a long time." To this diplomatic remark, Colonel Lea 
rejoined: "That is true; but this subject has been before you a 
long time. You are chiefs, not women and children; you can 
certainly give us an answer tomorrow." The council then ad- 
journed for the day. 

The next day. at the opening of the council. Wabasha arose 
and said he had listened to the words sent them by the Great 
Father and which the commissioners had delivered ; "but," con- 
tinued he, "these other chiefs around me may have something to 
say also. I will sit and listen to what is said." After a long, 
constrained and doubtless uncomfortable silence. Little Crow, 
graceful and deliberate, arose and addressed the council. Little 
Crow, chief of the Kaposia band, was, without doubt, according 
to the evidence of his contemporaries, the brainiest, shrewdest 
and most influential Indian then west of the Mississippi. Dressed 
elaborately for the occasion, with a white shirt and collar, a 
gaudy neckchief, his tastefully embroidered medicine bag sus- 
pended from his neck, a red belt, with a silver buckle, about his 
waist, and wearing a pair of elaborately beaded trousers and 


moccasins, his long, black, curling hair, soft and almost as silken 
as a white woman's, flowing over his shoulders, and with his keen 
black eyes alight — he was indeed a striking and attractive figure. 
His voice, attuned to the forests and the waterfalls, had nature's 
own musical intonations, and when he began to speak even the, 
little Indian children, playing about the outskirts of the council, 
were silent. As reported by Alexander Faribault, the chieftain 
said : 

"Fathers: These chiefs and soldiers, and others who sit here, 
have something they wish said to you, and I am going to speak 
it for them. There are chiefs here who are older than myself, 
and I would rather they had spcken ; but they have put it upon 
me to speak, although I feel as if my mouth was tied. These 
chiefs went to Washington long ago and brought back a good 
report concerning the settlement of our affairs in the treaty 
made there, and they and we were glad. But things that were 
promised in that treaty have not taken place. This is why these 
men sit still and say nothing. You perhaps are ashamed (or dis- 
graced ; "ishtenya" in Sioux) of us ; but you, fathers, are the 
cause of its being so. They speak of money that is due them ; it 
was mentioned the other day to Governor Ramsey, and we spoke 
about it last fall, but we have not yet seen the money. We desire 
to have it laid down to us. It is money due on the old treaty, 
and I think it should be paid, we do not want to talk about a 
new treaty until it is all paid." 

The commissioners again declared that under the treat)- the 
money which had been withheld was to be expended by the direc- 
tion of the president, and he had decided to apply it to the edu- 
cation of the Indian children. Perhaps, they said, there has been 
a misunderstanding as to what the other treaty meant. They 
desired now to make a treaty that would he so plain that there 
could, and would, be no doubt as to its meaning. Governor Ram- 
sey then said: "If this treaty can be arranged, as much money 
will be paid down to you as will be equal to your usual cash 
annuities for three years." The governor then thought to bring 
matters to an immediate conclusion. "Do you wish." lie asked, 
"that this amount be paid to you as your other annuities have 
been?" The chiefs made a murmur of apparent assent, and the 
governor continued: "Do all the people want it paid in that 
way?" Little Crow replied that if it were divided for the Indians 
by the whites it would probably he best; if the Indians under- 
took to divide it there might be some difficulty. Governor Ram- 
sey replied that the money was in "money boxes," and a long 
time would In- required to count the monej and get it ready, 
and in the meanwhile they would go ahead with the treaty. Hut 
Little Crow said: "We will talk of nothing else hut that money, 


if it is until next spring. That lies in the way of a treaty. I 
speak for others, and not for myself." 

After some protests against further delay on the part of the 
commissioners, the Indians saying nothing, the council adjourned 
until it should be called by the Indians. The next day the In- 
dians remained in their quarters until late in the afternoon, 
when messengers came saying that the chiefs were all assembled 
at the council house and wished their white father to attend. 
Very soon the council was in session, but after the opening there 
was a long silence. Finally Anah-ga-nahzhee (Stands Astride), 
the second chief, or head soldier of the band of his brother, 
Shakopee, remarked that it had been decided in council, the 
Indian council, that Wacoota should speak to the Indians. But 
Wacoota asked to be excused, and that some other Indian should 
speak. "I am of the same mind with my friend here, Wabasha, 
and will sit and listen," said Wacoota. There was no response. 
After a long wait the commissioners went over the whole sub- 
ject again, and the Indians yet remaining silent, Colonel Lea at 
last said: "It is plain that the Medawakantons do not wish to 
sell their lands. I hope they will not regret it. This grieves my 
heart, and I know it will make the heart of your Great Father 
sad. Say to the chiefs and head men that we are all ready to 
meet them here tomorrow, or at any other time and place they 
desire." The commissioners now hastily adjourned, apparently 
in great ill humor, leaving the chiefs still on the benches, 
astounded at the conduct of their white brothers. There was an 
interregnum in the proceedings for four days. The time was 
spent by the whites in privately preparing a treaty which would 
be acceptable to the Indians. The Medawakantons had become 
partially reconciled. The head chief. Wabasha, was still opposed 
to any treaty as it had been proposed, but Little Crow and other 
sub-chiefs were in favor of one if the terms were fairly liberal 
and the assent of their bands could be obtained. Little Crow 
was particularly for a treaty and the sale of the big expanse of 
land to the westward, which, he said, did his people no good, 
which but very few of his band had ever visited, and which he 
himself had never seen. He disliked to abandon his old Kaposia 
home, because of its associations. Here were the graves of his 
father and mother and other kinspeople; here was the site of his 
birthplace and of his boyhood, and here he had been chief of the 
old and noted band of his ancestors for more than four years. 
But Little Crow was shrewd and intelligent, and knew that the 
whites were pressing upon his people as they had pressed upon 
the other red people, and that the result would be the same as it 
had been — the Indians would be compelled to leave their country 
and move on. The wise course, therefore, it seemed to him. was 


to obtain the best terms possible— to get all of the money and 
other supplies and the best permanent reservation to be had. It 
was asserted that Little Crow had been well bribed by the 
traders, and by the commissioners, too, and that his opinions 
were the result of substantial considerations. If the charge were 
true, the conduct of Little Crow was somewhat strange. He 
spoke against considering the treaty until the money that was 
being held back should be paid in hand. He demanded a reser- 
vation that should come down the Minnesota to Traverse des 
Sioux, and he wanted all the money and goods, and the most 
favorable terms generally that could be had. He was in frequent 
consultation with the commissioners during the days of waiting, 
and at the last announced that he was ready to sign the treaty, 
although some of the Indians had sworn that they would shoot 
the first man of their tribe who put his hand to the goose quill 
preparatory to subscribing to the hated contract. 

Monday, August 5, was an eventful day in the deliberations. 
The council met at 11 o'clock in the morning, and Chief Good 
Road, of one of the band about Fort Snelling, was the first 
speaker. He said: "We have several tilings to say about the 
various matters before we sign this treaty." Colonel Lea replied : 
"The treaty has been prepared after we have all agreed as to its 
terms, and it is best not to delay any further. We will have the 
treaty read in English and explained in the Dakotah language, 
so that all can see that it is a good treaty." Rev. S. R. Riggs, 
the missionary, read the treaty slowly, and explained it in Sioux 
very fully. Governor Ramsey then said: "The chiefs and head 
men have heard the treaty in their own language. Who will 
sign first?" There was a silence of some minutes, when Colonel 
Lea indicated that Little Crow should be the first to sign, but 
the chief smiled and shook his head. At last Wabasha arose and 
-aid : 

"You have requested us to sign this paper, and you have told 
these people standing around that it is for their benefit; but I do 
not think so. In the treaty you have read you mention a lot 
about farmers, schools, physicians, traders and half-breeds, who 
are to hv paid out of the money. To all of these I am opposed. 
You see these chiefs sitting around here. They and some others, 
who are dead, went to Washington twelve years ago and made 
a treaty in which some things were said; hut we were not hene- 

1 b] them, and I w .nit them struck out of this one. We want 
nothing hut cash for our lands. Another thin;,;-: You have 
named a place for our home, hut it is a prairie country. 1 am a 

man used to the w Is, and do nol like the prairies; perhaps 

ho are here will name a place we would all like 
better. Another thing: When 1 went to Washington to see our 


Great Father, he asked us for our land, and we gave it to him, 
and he agreed to furnish us with provisions and goods for twenty 
years. I wish to remain in this country until that time expires." 
Colonel Lea made an indignant and severe reply to Wabasha, 
although as a matter of fact Wabasha's request was not perhaps 
so very unreasonable. The colonel declared that the chief had a 
forked tongue, and was neither the friend of the white man or 
the Indians. "We know that the treaty does not meet his views, 
and we do not expect to be able to make one that will suit him," 
said Colonel Lea. "We know that he tried to deceive the Indians 
and us. He wanted to have the Madawakantons and Wahpa- 
kootas make a treaty by themselves — a separate treaty — and 
leave out the upper bands altogether. He did not want them to 
have a good treaty unless he could dictate just how it should be. 
He advised you to ask $6,000,000 for the land, which he knew 
was a foolish proposition. We are surprised to find a chief like 
him, whose father and grandfather were great chiefs. We have 
talked much about this treaty, and we have written and signed 
it, and now it is too late to talk of changing it." After Colonel 
Lea had finished this stinging rebuke, which must have gone deep 
to the heart of the proud old chief, there was evident dissatisfac- 
tion among the Indians. Governor Ramsey quickly asked : "Will 
either of the principal chiefs sign? Do they say yes or no?" 
But they said neither. They were silent for a time, and evi- 
dently displeased. For a while it looked as though the papers 
would not receive a single Indian signature. At last Bad Hail, 
the second chief of Gray Iron's band, arose and said that if two 
claims against the whites could be settled, he and others would 
sign. Chief Shakopee then came forward and laid before the 
commissioners a written deed, made and signed by the Indians 
in 1837, and conveying to their kinswoman, Mrs. Lucy Bailly 
(nee Faribault), the wife of Alexis Bailly, three sections of land, 
including the present site of the town of Shakopee. The chief 
said the Indians desired that this land be secured to Mrs. Bailly 
by the treaty; or that, instead, the sum of $10,000 in cash be 
paid her. Bad Hail presented another paper, providing that a 
provision be made in the treaty for the reservation of several 
hundred acres for the heirs of Scott Campbell, the noted old 
interpreter at Fort Snelling. Stands Astride, the second chief 
of Shakopee's band, demanded that the request made in both 
papers be complied with. But Colonel Lea replied : "Our Great 
Father will not allow us to write such things in treaties. If you 
wish to pay Mrs. Bailly $10,000, you can do so out of your own 
money when the treaty is ratified, and you can pay Scott Camp- 
bell's heirs as much as you please; the money will be yours." 
Little Crow again spoke, and was, as before, listened to with the 


deepest attention. He said he had been raised in a country 
where there were plenty of trees and extensive woods, in which 
wild game could be found. If the Indian reservations were made 
to extend eastward to Traverse des Sioux, there would be plenty 
of woods, and he would be satisfied. The land provided for the 
future home of his band was too much prairie. Shakopee's 
brother now came forward, and, speaking very loudly and ear- 
nestly and to the point, said he represented the Indian soldiers, 
or braves, and was one of the owners of the land. "The chiefs 
don't seem to do anything," he said, "and we must be heard." 
Like Little Crow, he thought the east line of the proposed reser- 
vation was too high up in the prairies, and he indicated Lake 
Minnetonka and Minnehaha creek as the locality where he 
thought the Medawakantons would, in the future, be willing to 
live and die, to make it the perpetual home of the band. He said 
the soldiers were satisfied with the other parts of the treaty. 
Governor Ramsey saw a valuable opportunity. He began flatter- 
ing not only the warrior who had spoken, but also the other 
Indian soldiers, saying they had spoken out boldly and like men. 
The commissioners, he said, have been waiting to hear what the 
warriors wanted. "Now," said the governor, "we will come 
down with the reservation to the Little Rock river, where it 
empties into the Minnesota ; this line will certainly give you 
timber enough." Another soldier arose and demanded that the 
treaty with the Chippewas be abrogated so that he and the other 
Sioux could go to war against them whenever they pleased. Xo 
attention was paid to this speech, except to laugh at it. Then 
Chief Wacoota, the mild-mannered, gentle-hearted head of the 
Red Wing band, arose, and speaking somewhat slowly and de- 
liberately, made a somewhat lengthy speech, in which he said 
that the treaty was all right upon its face, but the Indians, and 
he among them, feared that when it was taken to Washington it 
would In- changed to their great injury, just as the treaty of 1837 
had been changed. "1 say it in good feeling," declared Wacoota, 
"but I think you yourselves believe it will be changed without 
our consent, as the other treaty was." lie said, as to future 
reservation. In- wanted it smith of where he and his band then 
lived (in the Cannon river country 1 ), or he would like his par- 
ticular reservation to be at Pine Island, or on the Mississippi, 
which locality, he asserted, was a good place for the Indians. 
Me wanted this condition put in the treaty if it was right and 
just, but if not. then "say no more about it." lie declared he 
.■ a pleased with the treaty generally, but hoped that the farming 
for the Indians would be better done than it had been, (iovernor 
Ramsey complimented Wacoota "as a man 1 always listen to 
with great respect." Wacoota, it will thus be seen, wanted the 


reservation in the south part of what is now Minnesota, prac- 
tically in what is now Goodhue county, others wanted it in other 
places, in fact, there was so wide a diversity of opinion that the 
red men would probably never have agreed among themselves, 
even if the matter had been left entirely to them. The commis- 
sioners honestly considered that they had selected a good place 
for the Indian reservation. There would be plenty of wood and 
water, and the Indians could continue to hunt in the big woods 
and elsewhere in their former hunting grounds as usual until 
the whites should come in and settle upon the lands. 

Wabasha now arose and asked whether or not it was designed 
to distinguish the chiefs and second chiefs by marks of distinc- 
tion, and allow them more money than the common Indians 
should receive. Colonel Lea answered : "Wabasha now talks 
like a man." The colonel said that it was due to the station and 
responsibility of the chiefs that they should be distinguished 
from the other Indians. He said that each chief ought to have a 
medal and a good house to live in, so that when his friends came 
to see him they could be accommodated properly. Wabasha 
again arose. This time he turned his back upon the commis- 
sioners and spoke to his warriors somewhat vehemently, but 
with dignity. "Young men," he said, "you have declared that 
the chief who got up first to sign the treaty, you would like 
killed; it is this talk that has caused all the difficulty. It seems 
that you have agreed among yourselves that you will sell the 
land, and you have done it in the dark. I want you to say now 
outright, before all the people here, whether you are willing to 
sell the land." Shakopee's brother, the speaker for the warriors, 
sprang to his feet and called out excitedly: "Wabasha has ac- 
cused us of something we never thought of. The warriors heard 
that the chiefs were making a treaty and the}' did not like it, for 
the land really belongs to the warriors and not to the chiefs ; but 
they never spoke of killing the chiefs. It was true that the sol- 
diers have got together and agreed to sell the land ; they have 
told him so, and now I have said so." Governor Ramsey, seeing 
this opportunity, quickly said : "This, then, being the under- 
standing, let the soldiers tell us what chief shall sign first." 
Medicine Bottle, the head soldier of Little Crow's Kaposia band, 
arose and said : "To the people who did not go to Washington 
and make the treaty — to them belongs the land on this side of 
the river. There is one chief among us who did not go to Wash- 
ington at that time, and the soldiers want him to sign first. He 
has been a great war chief, and he has been our leader against 
the Chippewas. It is Little Crow. We want him to sign first." 
Little Crow promptly arose. Without a tremor he faced the 
scowling warriors who had opposed the treaty, and in his well 


known clarion voice, keyed to a high pitch, he thus addressed 
them : 

"Soldiers, it lias been said by some of you that the first that 
signs this treaty you will kill. Now I am willing to be first, but 
I am not afraid you will kill me. If you do, it will be all right. 
A man has to die sometime, and he can die but once. It matters 
little to me when my time comes, nor do I care much how it 
comes, though I would rather die fighting our enemies. I be- 
lieve this treaty will be best for the Dakotas, and I will sign it, 
even if a dog kills me before I lay down the goose quill." Then, 
turning to the commissioners, he said: "Fathers, I hope you will 
be willing to let our new reservation come down to the Traverse 
des Sioux, so that our people can be comfortable and not 
crowded, and have plenty of good hunting and fishing grounds. 
The Swan lake and other lakes have plenty of fish and wild rice, 
and there is plenty of wood. Rock creek is not far enough down 
for us. I am glad that we can hunt in the big woods as hereto- 
fore, but I hope you will bring our new home down to Traverse 
des Sioux." If Little Crow's request had been granted, the 
eastern boundary of the new reservation would have extended 
about forty miles below Rock creek, or two miles east of St. 
Peter, and would have included the present sites of that city, 
New Ulm and Mankato. The commissioners declined the re- 
quest. Colonel Lea said : "The reservation is all right as it is." 
Governor Ramsey said : "We have marked out a large piece of 
land for your home; the soldiers asked us for more and we gave 
it. It is all that we can do." Colonel Lea added: "No man 
puts any food in his mouth by much talk, but often gets hungry 
if he talks too long. Let the Little Crow and the other chiefs 
step forward and sign." Finding the commissioners firm, Little 
Crow now stepped to the table and being handed a chair, sat 
down and signed each of the duplicate copies of the treaty. It 
has been said that Little Crow was taught to write by the Rev. 
Briggs at lac qui Parle, and another account declares with equal 
assurance that his teacher was the Rev. Dr. Williamson, at 
Kaposia. To the treaty Little Crow signed his original name. 
Tab O-ya-te Doota, meaning His Red Nation. Wabasha was 
the next to sign, making his mark. Thru the other chiefs, head 
soldiers and principal warriors crowded around to affix their 
marks. In all, there were sixty-five Indian signatures. Of Wa- 
coota's band, the following affixed their signatures: Chief Wah- 
koo tay, the Shooter; his head soldier, lion Cloud; and his prin- 
cipal warriors, Good Iron Voice, Stands on the Ground, Stands 
Above. Sacred Fire, Red Stones, Sacred Blaze and Iron Cane. 

At Mendota, as at Traverse des Sioux, when the treaty was 
concluded, each Indian signer stepped to another table where 


lay another paper which he signed. This was called the traders' 
paper, and was an agreement to pay the "just debts," so called, 
of the Indians, including those present and absent, alive and 
dead, owing to the traders and the trading company. Some of 
the accounts were nearly thirty years old, and the Indians who 
had contracted them were dead ; but the bands willingly assumed 
the indebtedness and agreed that it might be discharged out of 
the first money paid them. The territory ceded by the two 
treaties was declared to be : "All their lands in the state of 
Iowa, and also all their lands in the territory of Minnesota lying 
east of the following line, to-wit : Beginning at the junction of 
Buffalo river with the Red River of the North (about twelve 
miles north of Morehead, at Georgetown station, in Clay county)', 
thence along the western bank of said Red River of the North, 
to the mouth of the Sioux Wood river ; thence along the western 
bank of said Sioux Wood river to Lake Traverse ; thence along 
the western shore of said lake to the southern extremity thereof ; 
thence, in a direct line, to the juncture of Kampeska lake with 
the Tehan-Ka-Sna-Duka, or Sioux river; thence along the west- 
ern bank of said river to its point of intersection with the north- 
ern line of the state of Iowa, including all islands in said rivers 
and lakes." 

The lower bands were to receive $1,410,000, to be paid in the 
manner and form following: For settling debts and removing 
themselves to the new reservation, $220,000, one-half to the 
Medawakanton bands, and one-half to the single Wahpakoota 
band ; for schools, mills, and opening farms, $30,000. Of the 
principal of $1,410,000, the sum of $30,000 in cash was to be dis- 
tributed among the two bands as soon as the treaty was ratified, 
and $28,000 was to be expended annually, under the president's 
direction, as follows: To a civilization fund, $12,000; to an 
educational fund, $6,000; for goods and provisions, $10,000. The 
balance of the principal, or $1,160,000, was to remain in trust 
with the United States at 5 per cent interest, to be paid annually 
to the Indians for fifty years, commencing July 1, 1852. The 
$58,000 annuity interest was to be expended as the first install- 
ment— $30,000 in cash, $12,000 for civilization, $6,000 for educa- 
tion, and $10,000 for goods and provisions. The back annuities 
under the treaty of 1837 remaining unexpired were also to be 
paid annually. Their reservation was to extend from the mouth 
of the Yellow Medicine and Hawk creek southeasterly to the 
mouth of Rock creek, a tract twenty miles wide and about forty- 
five miles in length. The half-breeds of the Sioux were to re- 
ceive in cash $150,000 in lieu of lands allowed them under the 
Prairie du Chien treaty of 1830, but which they had failed to 


The written copies of the Traverse des Sioux and the Men- 
dota treaties, duly signed and attested, were forwarded to Wash- 
ington to be acted upon by the senate at the ensuing session of 
congress. An unreasonably long delay resulted. Final action 
was not had until the following summer, when, on July 23, 
the senate ratified both treaties with important amendments. 
The provisions for reservations for both the upper and lower 
bands were stricken out, and substitutes adopted, agreeing to 
pay ten cents an acre for both reservations, and authorizing the 
president, with the assent of the Indians, to cause to be set apart 
other reservations, which were to be within the limits of the 
original great cession. The provision to pay $150,000 to the 
half-bloods of the lower bands was also stricken out. The 
treaties, with the changes, came back to the Indians for final 
ratification and agreement to the alterations. The chiefs of the 
lower bands at first objected very strenuously, but finally, on 
Saturday, September 4, 1852, at Governor Ramsey's residence 
in St. Paul, the)- signed the amended articles, and the following 
Monday the chiefs and head men of the upper bands affixed 
their marks. As amended, the treaties were proclaimed by 
President Fillmore February 24, 1853. The Indians were allowed 
to remain in their old villages, or, if they preferred, to occupy 
their reservations as originally designated, until the president 
selected their new homes. That selection was never made, and 
the original reservations were finally allowed them. The removal 
of the lower Indians to their designated reservation began in 
1853, but was intermittent, interrupted and extended over a 
period of several years. The Indians went up in detachments, 
as they felt inclined. After living on the reservation for a time, 
some of them returned to their old hunting grounds about 
Mendota, Kaposia, Wabasha, Red Wing and the Cannon river 
country, where they lived continuously for some time, visiting 
their reservation and agency only at the time of the payment 
of their annuities. Finally, by the offer of cabins to live in, or 
other substantial inducements, nearly all of them were induced 
to settle on the Redwood Reserve. SO that in 1862, at the time 
of the outbreak, less than twenty families of the Medawakantons 
and Wahpakootas were living off their reservation. With the 
subsequent history of these Indians this volume will not deal in 
detail; the purpose of treating with the Indians thus far in this 
chapter having been to show the various negotiations by which 
Rice and Steele' comities and the surrounding territory came into 
the possession of the whites and was thus opened for settlement 
and development. 

The Wapakootas who signed this treaty were the head chief. 
Walking Whistling Horn, better known as Red Legs; his head 


soldier, Pay-Pay, or the Sharp ; and his principal men, Red 
Armor, the Third Son, Gray Crest, Voice That Can Be Heard, 
Bad Cloud, His Mind and Fearful Night. 

Of these, Hu-sha-sha, or Red Legs, the chief, took part in 
the outbreak of the sixties only as a soldier. He died at the 
Santee Agency, Nebraska, in about 1895. 




Rice and Steele Counties Made Part of the Seventh District by 
Territorial Proclamation — Made a Part of Wabasha County 
By Territorial Legislature — Becomes a Part of Dakota 
County in 1851 — Rice County Created with Extensive Area 
in 1853 — Steele County Created in 1855. 

Rice and Steele counties were originally included in Wabasha 
county, or Wabashaw, as it was then spelled, which was one of 
the nine original counties created by the first territorial legis- 

The first session of the legislative assembly of the territory of 
Minnesota was held at St. Paul, commencing on the third day of 
November, 1849. It convened in pursuance of the proclamation 
by the governor. 

This proclamation, issued by Governor Ramsey, July 7. 
1849, divided the territory into councillors' districts. The only 
settlers in what are now Rice and Steele counties were at the 
trading post at the present site of Faribault, in Rice county. This 
was included in the seventh district. 

Wabashaw county, as "erected" by the act of October 27. 
1849, comprised practically all of the southern part of the presenl 
state of Minnesota. Its northern boundary was the parallel 
running through the mouth of the St. Croix and the mouth of 
the Yellow Medicine rivers; its southern boundary was the Iowa 
line; its eastern the Mississippi, and its western the Missouri, 
and it also included the big peninsula between the Missouri and 
the Big Sioux rivers, and all of what is at present southwestern 
South Dakota. Of this vast county the present Rice and Steele 
counties were a part. 

By an act approved October 27, 1849, the territory was divided 
into the counties of Washington, Ramsey. Benton, Itasca, V\ 
shaw, Dakota, Wahnahto, Mohkahto and Pembina. Only the 
counties of Washington. Ramsey and Hen ton were fully organ 
ized for all county purposes. The others were organized only 
for the purpose of the appointment of justices of the peace, con- 
stables, and such other judicial and ministerial offices as might 
be speciall) provided For. They were entitled to "any number 
of justices of the peace and constables, not exceeding six in 


number, to be appointed by the governor, and their term of office 
was made two years, unless sooner removed by the governor," 
and they were made conservators of the peace. 

By an act approved November 1, 1849, a tax of one mill on 
the dollar was levied for purposes of raising a territorial revenue, 
and in unorganized counties the governor was required to ap- 
point three assessors to assess all property therein subject to 
taxation, and return the assessment roll by them made to the 
clerk of the board of county commissioners of the county to 
which their counties were attached for judicial purposes, and 
that board was required to levy the tax, and the collector of 
such county was requested to collect the tax and pay the same 
into the treasury of such an organized county in the same manner 
as they were required to do in such organized county of which 
they were officers. The present Rice and Steele counties were 
at that time a part of the unorganized county of Wabashaw, 
which was attached to Washington county for judicial purposes. 

By an act of the legislative assembly, approved November 1. 
1849, it was provided that a general election should be held on 
the fourth Monday of November of that year, at which there 
should be elected in each organized county for county purposes 
three county commissioners, one sheriff, one register of deeds, 
one county treasurer, one judge of probate, three assessors and 
two justices of the peace, as well as two constables for each 
election precinct. By an act of November 1, 1849, provision 
was made for the election in each precinct in the organized 
counties of two justices of the peace, their qualifications, juris- 
diction and duties defined, and a code of procedure in justice 
courts established. By an act approved October 27, 1849, provi- 
sion was made for the election of the boards of county commis- 
sioners in organized counties, consising of three members, ami 
defining their duties. They were to hold office for three years. 
An act of November 1, establishing probate courts in organized 
counties provided for the election of a judge of probate and 
defined his duties. The term of office was three years. By 
act of October 31, 1849, the election of a sheriff in organized 
counties was provided for, his duties prescribed, and provision 
made for collecting county revenue. An act of November 1, 1849. 
provided for the election of a register of deeds in organized 
counties and prescribed his duties. The term of office was two 
years, and the register was to serve as clerk of the board of 
county commissioners. An act of November 1, 1849, provided 
for the election of county treasurers in organized counties, and 
prescribed their duties. The term of office was one year. Clerks 
of the court were appointed by the judges. All the provisions 
made by these acts of October 31 and November 1 applied to 


organized counties. Wabasha county was created but not organ- 
ized, and these provisions as to officers did not apply within its 
borders, which, as then constituted, included the present Rice 
and Steele counties. 

Qualification of Voters. By an act approved November 1, 
1849, the qualifications of voters in the territory were defined as 
follows: All free white male inhabitants over the age of twenty- 
one years who shall have resided within the territory for six 
months next preceding any election, shall be entitled to vote at 
such election * * * provided that they shall be citizens of 
the United States for a period of two years next preceding such 
election, and have declared on oath before any court of record 
having a seal and a clerk or in time of vacation of said court 
before the clerk thereof, his intention to become such, and shall 
have taken an oath to support the constitution of the United 
States and the provisions of an act of congress entitled "An Act 
to Establish the Territory of Minnesota," approved March 3, 
1849. * * * That all persons of a mixture of white and 
Indian blood who shall have adopted the habits and customs of 
civilized men are hereby declared to be entitled to all the rights 
and privileges granted by this act. 

Chapter 1, Revised Statutes of Minnesota of 1851, divides the 
territory into Benton, Dakota, Itasca, Cass, Pembina, Ramsey, 
Washington, Chisago and Wabashaw counties and defined their 

By this revision the present Rice and Steele counties became a 
part of Dakota county. It should be remembered that during 
the period of two years when these counties ewre a part of 
Wabasha county they were still in the possession of the In- 
dians and aside from the men at the trading posts had no white 

Under the revised statutes, all the territory west of the Missis- 
sippi river and east of a line running from Medicine Bottle's 
village at Pine Bend, due south to the Iowa line, was erected into 
a separate county to be known as Wabashaw. This included in 
Wabashaw county a portion of what is now Dakota county as 
well as all the present counties of Goodhue, Wabasha, Dodge, 
Olmstead, Winona, Mower, Fellmore and Housted, but excluded 
the present Rice and Steele counties. 

By the same revision Dakota county was made to consist of 
all that part of the territory west of the Mississippi river and 
lying west of the county of Wabasha, and south of a line begin- 
ning at the mouth of Crow river, and up said river and the north 
branch thereof to its source and thence due west to the Missouri 
river. Thus Dakota county then included portions of the present 
counties of Dakota, Wright, Meeker. Stearns. Pope, Stevens 


and Traverse, and all of Big Stone, Swift, Kandiyohi, Henne- 
pin, Scott Carver, McLeod, Renville, Chippewa, Lac qui Parle, 
Yellow Medicine, Lincoln, Lyon, Red Wood, Brown, Nicolet, 
Sibley, Le Sueur, Rice, Steele, Waseca, Blue Earth, Watonwan, 
Cottonwood, Murray, Pipestone, Rock, Nobles, Jackson, Martin, 
Faribault, Freeborn, as well as all the counties in what is now 
South Dakota, west of the counties named to the Missouri river. 

By the laws of 1852, page 51, the boundaries of Dakota 
county, then including the present Rice and Steele counties, were 
still further curtailed, Hennepin county being set off. It was 
enacted "That so much of Dakota county as lies north of the 
Minnesota river, west of the Mississippi river and east of a line 
commencing at a place known as the Little Rapids on the said 
Minnesota river, thence in a direct line north by west to the forks 
of the Crow river, thence down the Crow river to the Missis- 
sippi be, and the same is hereby erected into a separate county, 
which shall be called the county of Hennepin. The act provided 
that "for election purposes it shall remain as at present, in con- 
junction with Dakota county, so far as relates to the election of 
a councellor and two representatives, until the next apportion- 
ment of representation." 

Rice County was created by act of the territorial legislature 
March 5, 1853. Section 7, chapter 15 (General Law r s of Minne- 
sota, 1853) gives the boundaries as follows: Beginning at the 
southwest corner of Dakota county, thence west along said 
county line to Lake Sakatah, thence south to the Iowa state 
line, thence east along said state line to the southwest corner 
of Fillmore county, thence along the west lines of Fillmore, 
Wabasha and Goodhue counties to the place of beginning. 

Steele County was created by act of the territorial legislature, 
approved February 20, 1855. Section 7, chapter 6 (Laws of 
Minnesota, 1855), gives the boundaries of Steele county as fol- 
lows : Beginning at the southwest corner of township 105, range 
19 west; thence running west thirty miles on said township 
line, to the township line between ranges 24 and 25 west; thence 
north twenty-four miles on said township line to the township 
line between townships 108 and 109; thence east on said town- 
ship line thirty miles to the township line between ranges 19 
and 20 west; thence south on said township line to the place of 

Subsequent changes and modifications are noted under the 
history of the separate counties, in Parts II and III of this work. 



Henry H. Sibley and His Extensive Jurisdiction — Judicial Dis- 
tricts — Rice and Steele Counties Under Judicial Jurisdiction 
of the Court of Washington County in 1849 — Under the 
Judicial Jurisdiction of Ramsey County in 1851 — Attached to 
Dakota County in 1853 — Rice and Steele Counties Included 
in the Fifth Judicial District With Hon. N. M. Donaldson 
on the Bench. 

Henry H. Sibley, living at Mendota, was the first officer of 
civil justice in the area now including Rice and Steele counties. 
He received his appointment as a justice of the peace, first from 
Governor Porter, of Michigan, and later from Governor Cham- 
bers, of Iowa. In writing of his early experiences, General 
Sibley has given us some amusing as well as enlightening side 
views of frontier justice. A selection from his manuscript is as 

"It may seen paradoxical, but it is nevertheless true, that 1 
was successively a citizen of Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa and Min- 
nesota territories, without changing my residence at Mendota. 
The jurisdiction of the first named terminated when Wisconsin 
was organized in 1836, and in turn Iowa extended her sway over 
the west of the Mississippi in 1838. When the latter was 
admitted as a state, with very much diminished area, t lie country 
lying outside of the state boundaries was left without any gov- 
ernment until the establishment of the Minnesota territorial 
organization placed us where we now are. It was my fortune 
to be the first to introduce the machinery of the law into what 
our legal brethren would have termed a benighted region, having 
received a commission of justice of the peace from the governor 
of Iowa territory for the county of Clayton. This county was 
an empire of itself in extent, reaching from a line some twenty 
miles below Prairie du Chien. on the west of the 'Father of 
W r aters,' to Pembina, and across to the Missouri river, As I was 
the only magistrate in this region and the county seat was some 
300 miles distant. I had matters pretty much under my own 
control, there being little chance of an appeal from my deci 
-ii his. In fact, some of the simple-minded people around me 
firmly believed that I had the power of life and death. On one 



occasion I issued a warrant for a Canadian who had committed a 
gross outrage and then fled from justice. I dispatched a trusty 
constable in pursuit, and he overtook the man below Lake Pepin 
and brought him back in irons. The friends of the culprit begged 
hard that he should not be severely punished, and, after keeping 
him in durance vile for several days, I agreed to release him if 
he would leave the country, threatening him with dire vengeance 
if he should ever return. He left in great haste and I never saw 
him afterwards. 

"I had the honor of being foreman of the first grand jury 
ever impanneled on the west of the Mississippi river, in what is 
now the state of Minnesota. The court was held at Mendota, 
Judge Cooper being assigned to that district. His honor delivered 
a written charge of considerable length, and really it was an able 
and finished production. Unfortunately, out of the twenty odd 
men who composed the jury, but three, if I recollect rightly, 
could speak English, the rest being Frenchmen, who were, to a 
man, profoundly ignorant of any language but their own. As a 
matter of course, they were highly edified while engaged in 
listening to the judge's charge." 

March 3, 1849, the territory of Minnesota was created by 
act of congress. By that act the judicial power of the territory 
was vested in a supreme court, district courts, probate courts 
and in justices of the peace. It was provided by that act that 
the territory should be divided into three judicial districts and 
that a district court should be held in each of the said districts 
by one of the justices of the supreme court at such times and 
places as might be prescribed by law. It was also provided that 
temporarily, or until otherwise provided by law, the governor 
of said territory might define the judicial districts of said ter- 
ritory, and assign the judges who might be appointed for said 
territory, to the several districts, and also appoint the times and 
places for holding courts in the several counties or subdivisions 
in each of the judicial districts by proclamation. 

Governor Ramsey arrived at St. Paul, May 27, 1849, and on 
June 11, issued his proclamation dividing the territory into three 
judicial districts. The third district had no definite boundaries, 
but in general included all that part of the territory south of 
the Minnesota, and south to the Mississippi from where it 
receives the waters of the Minnesota to the Iowa line. This 
included the present Rice and Steele counties. Court was ordered 
to be held at Mendota on the fourth Monday in August and the 
fourth Monday in February. 

At the first session of the territorial legislature only Wash- 
ington, Ramsey and Benton counties were fully organized for all 
county purposes. The other counties in the territory were 


attached to some one of these counties for judicial purposes. 
Wabasha county, then including the present Rice and Steele 
counties, was attached to Ramsey county for that purpose. 

March 5, 1853, Dakota county was fully organized and terms 
of court were appointed to be held therein, on the second Mem- 
day of September in each year, and lion. David Cooper was 
assigned as judge thereof. Rice county, which had been created 
and included the present Steele county, was attached to Dakota 
county for judicial purposes. 

Judge Cooper held court in Mendota the fourth Monday in 
August, 1849. H. H. Sibley was foreman of the grand jury, the 
first ever impaneled west of the Mississippi, in Minnesota. Judge 
Cooper delivered a written charge, able and finished, but as 
appears in General Sibley's reminiscences, only three of the 
twenty odd men composing the jury understood a word of the 
language he was speaking. Major Forbes served as interpreter 
through the term, but no indictments were found. The court 
was organized in a large stone warehouse belonging to the Fur 
Company. Judge Cooper's term of office was from June 1, 1849. 
to April 7, 1853. 

The first district court for the county of Dakota, to which 
Rice county (which included the present Steele county) had 
been attached, was held in Mendota on the second Monday of 
September, 1853 (September 12), as appointed to be held by the 
law organizing the county. Judge Andrew G. Chatfield (who 
went on the bench April 7, 1853) presided. The officers of the 
court present were : W. W. Irwin, marshal of the United States 
for the district of Minnesota ; J. C. Dow, district attorney ; A. R. 
French, sheriff of Dakota county; J. J. Noah, clerk, represented 
by Dwight Downing, his deputy. Edmund Brisette was ap- 
pointed interpreter and James McShane. crier. Henry II. Sibley 
was foreman of the grand jury. The grand jurors were: Henry 
H. Sibley, James McBoal, Claude Cournover, James M. Griggs, 
Thomas Odell, Baptiste Cudet, James Locke. Patrick Quigley, 
William L. Batley, Louis Martin. Henry Coleoff, George Fari- 
bault, Andrew Robertson, O. P. Bromley. John W. Brown, Elias 
Cope, Horace Dresser, William Bissell. Michael Lemell and 
Francis Gamell. The petit jurors were: James Thompson, Peter 
M Califf, Albert Webster, Warren Woodbury, John McShane, 
Patrick A. Moran, Duncan Campbell, Louis Fourcier, Hugh 
Kirkpatrick, Sylvester M Cook. George Bell, David Cope, 
William Quinn, Baptiste Campbell, Peter St. Antoine, Norbesl 
Paquin, Joseph Gervais, Louis Lendivche, Alexander McCloud, 
Franklin J. Bartlett, Joseph R. Brown, Amiable Turpin and 
Janus Bruce. 


The grand jury was in attendance six days and the petit jury 
five days. 

On March 6, 1854, Judge Chatfield ordered a special term of 
court to be held on the thirteenth day of April, 1854, in said 
county; and a panel of grand and petit jurors to be drawn and 
summoned for the same. The special term was held on that 
date at Mendota and the officers present were: Andrew G. Chat- 
field, judge; Andrew J. Whitney, acting United States marshal; 
Franklin J. Bartlett, sheriff ; J. J. Noah, clerk. Dr. Thomas 
Foster was appointed foreman of the grand jury. The grand 
jury was in attendance four days, and there is no record that it 
found any indictments. The petit jury was in attendance, but 
there is no record of the trial of any case by it. 

The next general term of the district court for Dakota county 
was held at Mendota, August 28, 1854. The officers present 
were: Andrew G. Chatfield, judge; W. W. Irwin, marshal; 
F. J. Bartlett, sheriff ; J. J. Noah, clerk. Two indictments were 
found by the grand jury against James Grant for selling liquor 
without a license, both of which were dismissed on motion of 
the defendant's attorney. One civil case was tried by the jury 
at this term. The jurors were in attendance four days and the 
court was in session six days. 

The next term was held at Mendota, February, 26, 1855. The 
officers present were: Andrew G. Chatfield, judge; A. C. Jones, 
marshal, F. J. Bartlett, sheriff; J. J. Noah, clerk; J. C. Dow, 
prosecuting attorney. This term was in session five days. No 
indictments were returned and no jury cases were tried. 

The next term was held at Mendota, August 27, 1855. The 
officers present were: Andrew G. Chatfield, judge; A. C. Jones, 
deputy United States marshal ; Norman Eddy, United States dis- 
trict attorney; F. J. Bartlett, sheriff; J. J. Noah, agent. A. M. 
Hayes was appointed by the court as district attorney for the 
term. Court was in session six days. 

The next term of the court was held in Mendota, February 
25, 1856. The officers present were : Andrew G. Chatfield, judge ; 
W. W. Irwin, United States marshal ; Norman Eddy, United 
States district attorney ; E. F. Parker, prosecuting attorney ; 
John Devlin, sheriff; J. J. Noah, clerk. The term was in session 
seven days. 

The next term was held at Mendota, August 13, 1856. The 
officers present were: Andrew G. Chatfield, judge; John Devlin, 
sheriff; J. J. Noah, clerk. The term was in session eight -lavs. 
John J. McVay was admitted to the bar at this term. 

Judge Chatfield's term expired April 23, 1857, and he was 
succeeded by Judge Charles E. Flandrau, whose distinction as a 


soldier, citizen and historian was equal to his reputation as a 

A special term of court was held in Smith's hall, Hastings, 
August 31, 1857, and was in session one day. The officers present 
were: Charles E. Flandrau, judge; George S. Winslow, clerk; 
Edward F. Parker, district attorney. 

A general term of the district court was held in Burgess hall. 
Hastings, December 27, 1857. The officers present were: Charles 
E. Flandrau, judge; George S. Winslow, clerk; E. F. Parker, 
district attorney; John Devlin, sheriff. This term remained 
in session until January 15, 1858. 

By an act of congress passed February 26, 1857," the people 
of the territory of Minnesota were authorized to form a con- 
stitution and state government, preparatory to their admission 
into the Union, and it provided for the election of delegates on 
the first Monday in June, 1857, to a constitutional convention 
to be held on the second Monday in July, 1857. Such a conven- 
tion was held and a constitution formed on August 29, 1857, 
which was submitted to a vote of the people at an election held 
on the thirteenth day of October, 1857, and adopted. 

That instrument provided that every free white male inhabi- 
tant over the age of twenty-one years, who had resided within the 
limits of the state for the ten days previous to the day of said 
election, might vote for all officers to be elected under the con- 
stitution at such election, and also for or against the adoption 
of the constitution. It also provided for the election at such 
election time of members of the house of representatives of the 
United States, governor, lieutenant-governor, supreme and dis- 
trict judges, members of the legislature and all other officers 
designated in that constitution. It also, for the purposes of first 
election, divided the state into senatorial and representative 
districts. The constitution also divided the state into six judicial 
districts until the legislature should otherwise provide. The 
counties of Washington, Chisago, Anoka, Pine, Buchanan, Carl- 
ton, St. Louis and Lake were made to constitute the first judicial 
district and the counties of Dakota, Goodhue, Scott, Rice, Steele, 
Waseca, Dodge, Mower and Freeborn the fifth judicial district. 

At the election, lion. S. J. R. McMillan was elected judge of 
the first judicial district, and lion. X. M. Donaldson, of Owa- 
tonna, judge of the fifth. 

The judicial histor) of Rice and Steele counties, individually, 
is continued in Parts II and HI of this work. 





Introduction — Situation and Advantages — Natural Drainage — 
Cannon River — Topography — Spil and Timber — The Bridge- 
water Kame — Minerals from the Drift — Mastodon Remains 
— Old Wells in Rice County — Artificial Mounds — Material 
Resources — Building Stone, Bricks and Lime. 

In the central part of that fertile triangle of land, formed by 
the Mississippi river and the northeastwardly flowing Minnesota 
is a beautiful county which has taken its name from Henry M. 
Rice, whose voice and influence were so important factors in 
shaping the destinies of Minnesota in its territorial and early 
statehood days. Unusually blessed by nature with deep soil and 
abundant natural resources, and endowed with a wealth of pre- 
historic and historic lore, the county is a fitting home for the 
sturdy people who have here made their dwelling place. Hard- 
working, progressive, educated and prosperous, they have appre- 
ciated the gifts which nature has spread for them, and have 
added their own toil, and the fruit of their intellects, to the work 
of the elements, making the county one of the beautiful spots of 
the earth. On the hills graze cattle and sheep, while the level 
lands respond to the efforts of the spring-time sower and planter 
with a wealth of harvest in the summer and autumn. On nearly 
every quarter section is reared a comfortable home and commo- 
dious barns, while from the crest of every swell of land are 
visible the churches and schools wherein the people worship the 
Giver of all Gifts, and educate their children. Faribault, the 
county seat, is known in all parts of the world as an educational 
and religious center; the milling industry is but one of the fea- 
tures that has made Northfield famous; as a dairy market, Mor- 
ristown takes no backward place, and the other busy villages 
and hamlets have had their share in the growth of the county 
by furnishing a shipping and trading point for the agricultural 
sections. Thus blessed by God and beloved by man, the county 
today stands for all that is ideal in American life and is forging 
ahead to still wider influence and more extended opportunity. 

Rice county is situated in the triangle between the Missis- 
sippi and that part of the Minnesota which flows northeastward, 



and nearly in the center. Northfield, near the northern boun- 
dary, is thirty-eight miles from St. Paul, and the eastern boun- 
dary of the county is about the same distance from Lake Pepin. 
Faribault, the county seat, at the forks of the Cannon river, is 
about fifty miles south from St. Paul. The area of the county, 
which includes twelve sections more than fourteen government 
townships, amounts to 322,560.70 acres, of which 11,054.83 acres 
consist of water. 

Natural Drainage. The main artery of surface drainage is 
the Cannon river, which flows northeasterly through the central 
portions of the county. This stream, which moves with a smooth 
current, receives the Straight river from the south at Faribault, 
thus nearly doubling its volume. The Cannon river rises in the 
lakes at Shieldsville, a few miles northwest of Faribault, at an 
elevation of about 1,090 feet above the sea, and after a circuitous 
route through Le Sueur county, enters the county again at a 
point about seven miles from the point at which it left it. 
Throughout its course it passes through numerous lakes, and its 
main channel in Rice county, before its union with the Straight 
river, is widened out in the form of lakes at four places. It has 
the aspect in this part of its course of having once been occupied 
by a larger stream than the present Cannon river. Thus the 
Cannon river carries off the most of the surplus water from 
most of the lakes that are scattered throughout the western half 
of the county, though some of these waters seem to reach that 
valley by underground drainage, the lakes having no visible out- 
lets. In the southeastern part of the county the north branch 
of the Zumbro rises in a long marsh, which extends uninter- 
ruptedly to within a mile and a half of the Straight river. These 
marshes, and several others in the county, are caused by the 
impervious nature of the underlying Hudson river and Trenton 
shales, and mark the channels of glacial drainage. In a similar 
manner, the valley of Prairie creek, which once was one of volu- 
minous discharge, extends nearly as far southwest as to the val- 
ley of the Cannon river west of Cannon City. It is there partially 
tilled up with drift. 

To the most casual observer Rice county presents remarkable 
contrasts in its drainage features. That portion which lies east 
and southeast of the Cannon river is different from that portion 
lying to the west and the northwest of that valley. The former 
is undulating in long and gentle swells, with slow-flowing 
streams that are fringed with wide, often marshy and quaking 
low-lands. The streams are insignificant in comparison to the 
valleys which they occupy; and they have a direct and well- 
established direction of flow, without much tortuosity. Where 
they leave Rice county, their channels are sunk from one to two 


hundred feet below the general upland level. The country here 
drained is alike without lakes and timber. The latter is rolling 
in short and often steep and frequent hills that rise from fifty to 
a hundred feet above the surrounding country. Among these 
hills the crooked streams wander with every conceivable curve 
and change of direction, often encountering small lakes and re- 
ceiving small tributaries that drain others. They have no deeply 
eroded valleys, but run near the average low-land level of the 
country where the present contours of surface will permit. 
While there are frequent marshes here, they are isolated like 
the lakelets, and have a similar relation to the drainage. In 
this part of the county the precipitated moisture is retained by 
the more slow course of surface drainage as well as by the more 
gravelly and sandy nature of the surface drift materials. This 
part of the county also is timbered, a circumstance that not only 
produces, but also is favored by, a greater amount of natural 
moisture within the drift materials and on the exposed surface. 
This last has also retarded the former devastations by forest 
fires. This wooded portion is on the eastern edge of the "big 
woods" of Minnesota, or Bois fort, well and long known as one 
of the great physical features of the surface of the state. Several 
valuable water-powers have been improved in Rice county. 

Topography. The eastern and southern portions of the 
county are broadly undulating or smoothly rolling, with long 
swells running so as to operate as the primary div'des between 
the drainage valleys. The northeastern corner of the county, 
east of the Cannon river, is characterized by considerable dif- 
ferences of level, separated by plains that extend like terraces 
along the river courses. The Prairie creek valley is thus a wide, 
nearly level, expanse, bounded by an abrupt ascent of about a 
hundred feet to a higher flat which extends, with an undulating 
surface, right and left. The Cannon valley is the great topo- 
graphic feature of the county. Its outer bluffs rise about 100 
feet above the water at Northfields, about 250 at Dundas and 200 
feet at Faribault. The water surface of Straight river descends 
northward, within the county, from the level of about 1,050 feet 
above the sea to 950. The Cannon river, in like manner, de- 
scends, in crossing the county, from about 1,000 to 890 feet, its 
source in the lakes at Shieldsville being about 1,090. The high 
prairies in the towns of Wheeling and Richland are 1,150 to 
1,200 feet above the sea. The high plateau east and southeast 
of Cannon City is in general about flat, but has numerous deep 
valleys that penetrate within the St. Peter sandstone. The head 
of Prairie creek runs thus south and southwest far enough to 
unite with the Cannon valley. 

In the western wooded portion of the county there is a greater 


diversity of the immediate surface contour, but the average ele- 
vation is not so great as in the eastern, no known elevations 
being above 1,125 feet. The lakes that dot the surface here add 
much to the variety of topographic scenery. Some of these cover 
an area each of two to three square miles, and have a depth often 
to fifty feet. 

The average elevation of the county may be estimated as 
follows: Northfield, 990 feet above the sea; Wheeling, 1,110; 
Richland, 1,175; Bridgewater, 1,010; Cannon City, 1,085; Wal- 
cott, 1,100; Webster, 1,060; Forest, 1,025; Wells, 1,025; Warsaw, 
1,070; Wheatland, 1,075; Erin, 1,090; Shieldsville, 1,075; Morris- 
town, 1,045. From these figures the average elevation of the 
county becomes 1,065 feet. 

Soil and Timber. The soil of the upland prairies in the south- 
eastern part of the county, including the towns of Richland, 
Wheeling, Cannon City, and much of Northfield, is a black loam, 
underlain by clay. In the low grounds along the valleys this 
black loam is increased in thickness, and on some exposed knolls 
the underlying clay becomes the surface soil. In the low prairies 
of Northfield the subsoil is gravelly, and the soil itself, while 
rich and dark, is apt to become sandy, particularly in the imme- 
diate neighborhood of the bluffs where the St. Peter sandstone 
has opportunity to mingle with it. In the western part of the 
county, while the soil is a dark loam and equally fertile, gen- 
erally, as that in the eastern, it has a subsoil mainly of stony blue 
clay or a yellow pebbly loam, but on the gravelly hills, and on 
some of the lower ridges, in Morriston and Shieldsville, and par- 
ticularly in Webster, the subsoil is gravel and sand. This is 
the case also in the terrace-flats that skirt the Cannon river. The 
soils in the western part of the county arc much more stony 
than in the eastern. 

In ascending the Cannon valley from Northfield there is a 
marked change in the character of the forest growth. About 
Northfield, and northwardly through Dakota county, the trees 
arc mainly of oak and aspen. But ascending the Cannon these 
trees give place to sugar maple, butternut, ironwood, bass, ash, 
etc. The shrubs are also affected by the same change. Differ- 
ent species of hazelnut, ninebark and woodbine make their ap- 
pearance as undergrowth, sharing the shade with little aspens 
and wolfberries. The trees in the following list are arranged in 
the estimated order of frequency. 

Basswood. Common throughout the county, and especially 
throughout the heavy timber in the flat or undulating tracts of 
Bridgewater, Forest, Erin and Shieldsville. 

American or White Elm, Also Known as Water Elm. 


Black Oak. This is the usual oak. It is most abundant as 
small trees and shrubs ; and in the high and rolling parts of 
Webster and Wheatland it is only found in this condition. Very 
large trees, however, are scattered numerously through the heavy 
timber everywhere. 

Bur Oak. In exposed places, and particularly on the edges 
of the timber bordering the prairie, this is very abundant. It 
seems to endure fire better than the black oak, perhaps due to 
its more corky bark, but it does not succeed so well as the 
black oak on exposed and black hills or on poor soils. It occa- 
sionally furnishes a log for lumber and is apt to be confounded 
with the white oak, which is a much less common tree in the 

Silver Maple. A common tree, sometimes growing very large 
and furnishing lumber, but generally not more than ten inches 
in diameter so far as now seen in the county. It is common as 
second growth after the cutting of the original forest. 

American Aspen. Common on the outskirts of the timber, 
on exposed hillsides, as in Webster, and as second growth in all 
parts of the county ; generally not exceeding ten inches in 

Sugar Maple. This tree exhibits magnificent proportions in 
some heavily wooded tracts, as in western Shieldsville and Erin. 
It also sometimes starts up more numerous than any other tree 
as a second growth. It is common throughout the timbered 
portions of the county, and has been set for ornamental purposes 
in most of the prairie portions. It furnishes considerable quan- 
tities of syrup and sugar in Rice county, and is sometimes found 
among the saw-logs at the mills at Morristown. 

Slippery Elm or Red Elm. This makes better lumber than 
the white elm, but it does not grow so large nor so straight. 

Black or Water Ash. Some very large trees are found in 
western Shieldsville. 

Ironwood, Wild Plum, Box-elder. Not found in the heavy 
timber, but along streams and lakes. This makes a low-branched, 
rather small, irregular tree, and if it lives long it sustains a broad, 
light-green mass of foliage supported generally by two or three 
or more trunks from one root. It grows rapidly, has a dense 
wood, but is not durable. 

Butternut or Hickory, White Oak. Furnishes a valuable and 
tough timber. 

Cottonwood. Along the river bottoms, but not generally 
through the county. 

Water Beech, White Ash. Used for lumber. Some large 
straight trees were seen in Shieldsville. 


Red oak, red or swamp maple, black walnut, large-toothed 
aspen, hackberry, American crab-apple, tamarack, paper or canoe 
birch, juneberry, balm of Gilead, white pine, dogwood, hazelnut, 
smooth sumac, wild, redcherry, thorn, savin, American wood- 
bine, grape, Virginia creeper, speckled alder, nine-bark, red-osier 
dogwood, climbing bitter sweet, rose, dwarf wild rose, wolf- 
berry, highblackberry, red raspberry, New Jersey tea, false 

The Bridgewater Kame. The most important phenomenon 
of the drift in Rice county is the kame in Bridgewater and Can- 
non City townships. It can be tiaced, with unimportant inter- 
ruptions, from the northwest quarter of the northwest quarter of 
section 21, Bridgewater, to the northwest quarter of section 17. 
Cannon City, on the west side of the river, a distance of five and 
a half miles. It crosses the river twice, once in the northwest 
quarter of section 4 and once in the east half of section 8. It 
consists of gray gravel, with some larger stones, piled in a sharp 
ridge, about as steeply as such materials wil! lie. It is popu- 
larly known as a "horseback." It shows where the river ran 
during some portion of the ice-age, while the ice itself was 
present as a glacier and extended westward and northwestwardly 

This ridge rises conspicuously, first, on section 21, Bridge- 
water, not far from Wolf creek. It is interrupted for about 
twenty rods. The country through which it passes is flat or 
slightly undulating. It rises again and has about the same direc- 
tion. It crosses the railroad near the southeast corner of section 
20, and the north and south highway east of the railroad, and 
the east and west highway within a few rods of that. It has 
several short gaps then, but can be traced nearly to the Cannon 
river a little below the crossing on the northwest quarter of 
section 4, Cannon City, where it is very prominent. It re-appears 
in the southeast quarter of section 5. in the bottomlands of the 
river, but on the opposite side. This flat is seventy-five feet 
lower than the flat on which it lies in section 33. It is here lying 
on the Shakopee limestone, with occasional knobs of the St. Peter 
rising so as to be visible (one of them being visible under the 
gravel at the edge of the kame where it is cut by the river in 
section 8), but in section 33, at its most eastern turn, it lies on 
a red till, though afterward, where it enters section 32, it lies 
apparently on a gray till, if not directly on the underlying Shako- 
pee. On the north half of the northeast quarter of section 8, 
Cannon City, its upper outline is broken by rather abrupt 
changes. It continues in the bottom lands (or flood-plain), the 
strike of the St. Peter passing under it just where it reaches the 


river and considerably increasing its elevation. It here meas- 
ures, by aneroid, ninety-two feet in height. The flood-plain is 
about 940 feet above the sea (eight feet above the river), and the 
same rises to 1,032. The red till and loam, about one-eighth mile 
farther east, here rise in a timbered bluff in which the lower 
Trenton limestone is probably included, to 1,075 feet. Where 
the kame ceases on the west side of the river in section 8, the 
descent is as steep, to the very water, as on either side of the 
kame itself. The direction of the kame at this point would cause 
it to be expected on the west side of the river in the lowest part 
of the old channel in the northwest part of section 17. Here 
are found, actually, two ridges, but of less definite characters, 
and neither of them can be affirmed to be the extension of the 
kame, since they seem to blend with the generally bluffy till 
area which here lies between the Milwaukee and the river. One 
of these lies on each side of the north and south highway (like- 
wise of the railroad). That on the east side, though capped and 
flanked with gravel, at a height above the lower gravel terrace, 
yet has a basis of St. Peter sandrock and red till with north- 
eastern boulders. Its length is about an eight of a mile. Fur- 
ther east and south the land soon rises into a rough moraine. 
Toward the west the surface also rises irregularly, though some- 
what in the resemblance of a ridge at first, on the west side of 
which runs a little creek northward. 

The kame, the course of which has been described, consists 
entirely of gray gravel. It generally has not a sudden depres- 
sion immediately alongside, in the average level of the country, 
but the kame rises abruptly from the general flat, the angle being 
from 25° to 35° from the horizon. Yet, although there is not a 
sudden depression where it lies, there is perceptible in some 
cases, a broad, basin-shaped valley through the lowest parts of 
which it passes. This broad, smooth valley is from 100 to 120 
rods in width. Such can be seen in section 21, Bridgewater. 
The height of the ridge is usually from thirty to forty feet, with 
a smooth exterior, but near the schoolhouse in the west part of 
section 33, Bridgewater, its height is from seventy-five to eighty 
feet, and in other places it has an average height of fifty feet. 

Minerals from the Drift. Several pieces of native copper were 
found years ago in the southeast quarter of section 8, Cannon 
City, some in excavating for the foundation of a mill, and others 
along the road between sections 8 and 9. They are from the red 
till, which genenllv is there found lying in the eroded depres- 
sions of the St. Peter sandstone. 

Several pieces of silicified wood have been found at North- 
field. These evidently are referable to the gravel and till of the 
gray drift derived from the northwestward. 


Among the specimens obtained from the drift, now in the col- 
lections of Carleton college, has been preserved a boulder of very 
coarse porphyry. The crystals are apparently of albite, in a 
compact greenish diabase. They are about one and a half inches 
in length, the corners and edges rounded off, making the rock 
resemble a conglomerate. 

In the same collection of drift stones are several pieces, about 
six inches long, of the felsite of the great palisades at Lake Supe- 
rior, with the disseminated crystals of quartz and translucent 

Small specimens of asbestos have been brought to Carleton 
college, once said to have come from near Shieldsville, and once 
from near Faribault. It is in silky threads that are fine and from a 
vein in some rock. This vein is two and a half inches wide, the 
threads running transverse to the direction of the vein, and pre- 
senting a faulted structure near the middle of the vein. None 
of the rock' is preserved in the samples seen, but as both speci- 
mens have the same faulted structure they probably came from 
the same vein, if not from the same boulder. The grain of 
mineral, and its color, also indicate the same. 

Mastodon Remains. TheMinnesota Historical Society has in 
its collection the following letter, written some thirty years ago 
by Prof. L. B. Sperry: "Carleton College, Northficld, Minn.. 
April 8, 1882. Prof. N. II. Winched, Minneapolis, Minn. Dear 
sir: In reply to yours of the 3rd instant, making inquiries con- 
cerning some remains of a mastodon found in this city in 1879, 
and new in the cabinet of Carleton college. I would respectfully 
state that the remains found here consist only of a part of one 
tusk. This was exposed by some workmen while digging in a 
deposit of drift about ten feet below the surface. 

"The portion of the tusk found measured eight and one-half 
feet in length and twenty two inches in circumference at the 
base. When restored by continuing its general line of taper to a 
point, it measures nearly twelve feet. The broken extremity of 
the part found was so eroded and rounded as to render it evident 
that it had been broken and separated from the terminal portion 
before being deposited where it was found. Its whole appearance 
indicates that it had shared the rough-and-tumble experience of 
its associated drift material. Subsequent removal of much of 
the surrounding bank has not revealed the separated extremity. 
Exposure to the light and air has resulted in checking anil slack- 
ing the discovered specimen, so that protection by the use of glue, 
sizing and varnish became necessary, Yours cordially. 1.. B. 

Old Wells in Rice County. In the following paragraphs there 


have been preserved a list of the early wells in Rice county, sunk 
previous to 1882. In later wells the same varieties of clay have 
been encountered at about the same depths. 

Wheatland. Wells in Wheatland township are generally in 
blue clay after passing through two to four feet of yellow clay. 
The latter contains pebbles and bits of cretaceous shale, and if 
not a weathered condition of the blue till, is closely connected 
with it in origin. Southwest quarter section 16, well, 33 feet; 
yellow clay, then blue clay. 

Webster. Southeast quarter section 17, well, 38 feet; all 
yellow and blue clay except at the bottom, where water was 
found in gravel. Pieces of Cretaceous scale and lignite were 
found in this well. Section 14, well 42 feet ; yellowish-red clay, 
18 feet; the rest was blue clay. Southeast quarter section 16; 
well 54 feet ; said to be all in gravel, finding no water. This is on 
land about twenty feet higher than the one on section 17. South 
half of section 8; well 68 feet; yellow and blue clay. Southeast 
quarter section 10 ; well 30 feet ; yellow loam 8 to 10 feet, then 
blue clay and water in gravel. Northeast quarter section 14; 
well 25 feet ; only yellow loam and blue clay. 

Forest. Northwest quarter section 13; well 73 feet; dug all 
the way ; yellow clay, blue clay, quicksand, the blue clay making 
up the greater part of the depth, and the quicksand and gravel 
at the bottom furnishing water. The blue clay had considerable 
slate, and occasionally other stones as large as six inches. South- 
west quarter section 12 ; well 24 feet ; yellow and blue clay ; water 
in sand. East side of section 22 ; 25 feet deep ; mostly in yellow 
clay. Northeast quarter section 15; well 18 feet; all in yellow 
and blue clay, with pieces of Cretaceous shale. Northeast corner 
section 10; well 96 feet; in clay all the way to the bottom, where 
quicksand was struck, furnishing water. This well was bored 18 
inches in diameter and planked with pine, thus rendering the 
water foul. Section 35; well 110 feet; a bored well, formerly 
good water. 

Bridgewater. At St. Olaf school, section 36, Bridgewater, 
near Northfield, the well is in sand 6 to 10 feet, sand rock 80 to 
90 feet, Shakopee about 50 feet: water is raised by a windmill. 
Northeast quarter section 33; four wells; all in blue clay; 45 feet 
in blue clay, then limerock, then soapstone, there finding water, 
at least stopping there ; probably seep water ; no red clay under 
the blue clay. In this well was found a log 35 feet under the 
surface in blue clay. Section 17, well 27 feet; soil and yellow 
pebbly clay, 25 feet; sand, 1 foot; cemented yellow clay (hard- 
pan), 1 foot; water rose about 8 feet. 

Shieldsville. Northeast quarter section 1; well 20 feet; yel- 


low clay 10 feet, blue clay 10 feet ; both with small stones ; water 
from the clay. Another well was the same, though 8 feet higher 
at the surface. The lakes at Shieldsville do not supply the wells 
sunk near them, being in superficial basins in the impervious till. 
Some wells are sunk 70 feet or more, near these lakes, without 
getting a permanent supply of water. 

Wells. Northeast quarter section 12; Well 47 feet; yellow 
clay, 20 feet; sand, 2 feet; yellow, hard clay, 1 foot; blue clay, 
25 feet; this well is about on the contour line of 1,000; the west 
limit of the gravely, terrace-like expanse that accompanies the 
Cannon valley. Southeast quarter section 6; well 33 feet; yellow 
and blue clay, with gravel at the bottom. Section 21, well 45 
feet; yellow loam, 12 feet; blue clay, 28 feet; gravel, 5 feet; 
water. Section 21 ; well, on the brink of Roberds' lake ; 28 feet in 
blue clay; though situated but 10 feet above the lake, this well 
had no water. Northwest quarter section 6; well 6 or 8 feet deep 
in gravel ; near the lake, but about 25 feet above the lake. 

Cannon City. A well at Cannon City village passed through 
soil and clay 30 feet and into limerock 3 feet. South part of sec- 
tion 18 (west of the river) ; well 38 feet; yellow loam and clay, 4 
feet; blue clay, 30 feet; sand, 4 feet; no water; small pieces of 

Morristown. At Morristown village wells are from 12 to 15 
feet in depth, in gravel. Northeast quarter section 33; well 70 
feet deep; only in drift deposits. When the wind is west air 
comes into this well through the gravel near the bottom, and 
when it is east air passes in the opposite direction through the 
gravel. The well becomes so cold by this circulation that in 
winter, at the depth of 70 feet, the bucket freezes fast if left 
in the water. This well is in the prairie country, about 1,100 
or 1,125 feet above the sea, with a westward slope toward a 
marsh about a hundred rods from the well. 

Warsaw. Southeast quarter section 34; well 13 feet; all in 
yellow clay; water in a thin gravel bed. Northwest quarter sec- 
tion 34; well 90 feet; yellow and blue clay; no water. Another 
well ten or twelve feet west of the last, 50 feet deep, had a little 
water, but not enough. 

Walcott. Southwest quarter section 21; well. 6 feet; soil 
and sand five and a half feet; then blue clay: water rises and 
falls with Mud creek but is unfailing. This well is situated on 
the terrace-flat that accompanies the Straight river, and is about 
twenty-five feet above the river. Wells in section 14 and 11 are 
shallow, and often in gravel. 

Artificial mounds. At one-half mile north of the old Wheat- 
land posloffice, southwest quarter section 16, Wheatland, sev- 


eral artificial mounds appear. They lie along a small lake which 
is on the west side of the north-and-south road. Ihey are rather 
small, not exceeding two feet in height. Five or six are visible 
from the road. Ihere are probably others. 

In Webster township, section 17, an eighth of a mile north 
of Edward McFadden's, on the highest land, but yet surrounding 
a marsh, may be seen a number of mounds rising two and a half 
or three feet. 

There was an Indian mound on section 2, Shieldsville, on the 
south side of the outlet of the middle lake. According to Patrick 
McKenna, one of the early settlers of Shieldsville, the Sioux In- 
dians used to fix their camp at this place. They had a scaffold- 
ing upon it where they placed their dead, and afterwards buried 
their bones in the mound. This mound was from 10 to 12 
feet high. It was removed by the owner of the land that the 
surface might be tilled. Flint arrow-points have been found in 
that neighborhood. 

Mounds also exist in various places in the county, as will be 
found by reading an earlier chapter in this work. 

Material resources. Besides its fertile soil, and the large 
supply of timber that originally covered most of the western 
half of the county, Rice countv has natural means of wealth 
derivable directly from the bedded rocks, viz., building stone and 
lime. Bricks have also been made in a number of places. 

Building stone. Numerous stone-quarries occur in the east- 
ern half of the county. The bluffs throughout this region are 
capped by a layer of the Trenton limestone varying from two or 
three to twenty feet in thickness, and the same stratum outcrops 
favorably at many points along the Straight and Cannon valleys. 
This rock furnishes a useful stone for nearly all purposes i«- 
common buildings, and is used throughout the county for walls 
and foundations. 

Bricks of a uniformly red color have been made in Faribault 
at various times, and at one period assumed the proportions of 
an important industry. 

Lime. The upper strata of the Lower Trenton formation, as 
exposed in this county, furnish tolerably good material for 
quicklime, though in some places they are too siliceous and 
aluminous. Lime has been made from this formation in every 
township of the county east of the Cannon river. 

Note. Few counties surpass Rice county in geologic features, 
lying as it did at the edge of the ice cap of the last glacial period. 
Its drift and its till, the Cannon river and Straight river terraces, 
the gravel deposits and the morainic remains all offer a tempta- 
tion for extended discussion. Some thirty years ago, Prof. L. B. 


Sperry subjected the geologic formations of this county to minute 
study, and his work was ably supplemented by the explorations 
of Prof. N. H. Winchell and Dr. Warren Upham. The result of 
their researches appears in Volume I, of the "Geological and 
Natural History Survey of Minnesota," 1882-1885, which book, 
though containing a vast amount of information in regard to Rice 
county, is not commonly known to the people of this section. 
Its perusal will well repay even the most casual reader, while 
the student will find the book of immeasurable value. 



The Wapakootas — Early Explorations — Adventurers Who May 
Have Reached Rice County — Official Surveys — "After 
Eighty-four Years," an Interesting Paper by Stephen Jewett 
Relating to the Faribaults — Biography of Jean Baptiste Fari- 
bault — Biography of Alexander Faribault — He Begins Trad- 
ing on the Cannon River in 1826 — Settlement of Indians at 
Present Site of Faribault in 1834 — First Buildings — Distin- 
guished Services of Alexander Faribault — The Passing of 
the Red Men. 

From time immemorial, until the signing of the treaty of 
Mendota in 1851, the Wapakoota band of the Sioux Indians had 
their habitation about the lakes of what is now Rice county, 
and although, Indian fashion, they doubtless had small settle- 
ments temporarily in various places, their permanent village in 
this county, for centuries before the coming of the white men, 
was probably in the vicinity of what is now Faribault. The 
earliest whites found a settlement on the northeast shore of 
Cannon lake, three miles west of the present site of Faribault, 
and archaeological research reveals the same location as the site 
of a still more ancient village. Long before the signing of the 
treaty of 1851, the territory now embracing Rice county was well 
known to the white men. 

Neither Father Louis Hennepin, who, with his companions, 
Pickard du Gay (Auguelle) and Michael Accault (or Ako), ex- 
plored the upper Mississippi in 1680, nor Du Luth and his fol- 
lowers who met Hennepin and ascended and later descended the 
Mississippi with him, so far as we know, explored the triangle of 
land lying between the Mississippi and the northeastwardly 
flowing Minnesota. 

The names of Perrot, La Hontan and Le Sueur are, however, 
though vaguely and possibly incorrectly, associated with Rice 

Perrot established a trading post on the Mississippi, close 
above the mouth of the Wisconsin, which he named Fort St. 
Nicholas. In 1685, to extend his trade with the Indians, he built 
a temporary trading post on the east side of the Mississippi 
river, near Trempeleau, and afterwards the post called Fort St. 
Antoine ("Anthony), on the northwestern shore of Lake Pepin. 



about six miles from its mouth. He also had a post on the Min- 
nesota shore of this lake at its outlet, called Fort Perrot. From 
1685 until 1699 he conducted various explorations up the Mis- 
sissippi and into the surrounding country. On May 8, 1689, 
Perrot issued a proclamation in which he took possession of a 
vast territory in the name of the king of France. This territory 
included the basins of "the Bay des Puants (Green Bay) ; of 
the lake and rivers of the Outagamis and Maskoutins (Fox river 
and Lake Winnebago) ; of the river Ouiskonche (Wisconsin) and 
that of the Mississippi; the country of the Nadouessioux (the 
Sioux or Dakota Indians) and the rivers of St. Croix and St. 
Pierre (the Minnesota) and other places more remote." All 
these places, Perrot declared he had visited, and there is a pos- 
sibility that he may have crossed Rice county. 

Le Sueur built a fort on i J rairie Island (between Hastings 
and Red Wing) in 1695 and ascended the Mississippi and Min- 
nesota in 1700, using a sailing and rowing vessel and two canoes, 
in his quest after what he supposed to be copper ore, near the 
mouth of the Blue Earth river, at practically the present site of 
Mankato. Le Sueur's journal, probably written by a secretary, 
and that of Penicault, a ship carpenter who accompanied the 
expedition, have been preserved. The Wapakootas had their 
headquarters around the Blue Earth river as well as around the 
sources of the Cannon, and Le Sueur and his men became fa- 
miliar with this branch of the Sioux. It would be natural that 
the exploring expeditions that were sent out in all directions 
should reach Rice county. 

Even so distinguished an authority as Joseph W. Nicollet 
identifies a "Long river, described by La Flontan, as the Cannon 
river of the present day." In a report to Congress some years 
ago he said: "Having procured a copy of La Hontan's book, in 
which there is a roughly-made map of his long river, I am struck 
with the resemblance of its course, as laid down, with that of 
the Cannon River, which 1 had previously sketched in my field 
book." This Baron La Hontan was a French soldier-of-fortune, 
who after seeking service in Canada, returned to France in 1703 
and issued a book in which he claimed to have explored the upper 
courses of the Mississippi. Early historians attempted to locate 
the scenes of his marvelous adventures, and even identified the 
Minnesota or the Cannon rivers as the "Long River," which 
according to him, fell into the upper Mississippi from the west. 
At the present day, however, it is believed that the alleged ex- 
plorations of La Hontan were purely a work of fiction, fabri- 
cated after conversations with Perrot and On Luth, and written 
with an idea of obtaining money to actually visit the regions he 
claimed to have explored. 


The French had three successive forts at the present site of 
Frontenac in Goodhue County in the late twenties, the early 
thirties and the early fifties of the eighteenth century, and from 
there, exploring trips were conducted in various directions. 

Johnathan Carver, an American, ascended the upper Missis- 
sippi in 1766, but did not visit Rice County. 

Lieut. Zebulon M. Pike explored the upper Mississippi for 
the United States government in 1806-07 but likewise did not 
visit Rice County. 

In 1819, Col. Henry Leavenworth started to build at what 
is now Mendota in Dakota County, the fort which was shortly 
afterward moved across the river and is now Fort Snelling. From 
that time, Rice County began to be more or less known to the 
whites. May 10, 1823, the Steamer Virginia from St. Louis 
arrived at Ft. Snelling, and the influx of white population was 
started, although Rice County was not open to actual settlement 
until 1853. (Note. — The treaty of Mendota was signed August 
5, 1851. It was ratified with amendments by the United States 
senate June 23, 1852. The amendments were accepted by the 
Indians and President Millard Fillmore issued his proclamation 
accepting, ratifying and confirming the treaty February 24, 

In 1826, Alexander Faribault came to Rice County with a 
license to trade with the Indians. Stephen Jewett, who has 
made a special study of the early days of this vicinity, has pre- 
pared a paper on the Faribaults, which also gives the story of 
the first settlement in Rice County and in Faribault. 

Mr. Jewett's paper follows : 


The year 1826 is notable in the history of Faribault as the 
date of the coming of Alexander Faribault to the site of the 
place which now bears his name. Accompanied by his young 
wife he chose the banks of the Straight River for his first camp- 
ing place. Alexander Faribault was a lover of nature; and as 
his eye swept over the unbounded prairie to the south, the Big 
Woods and silver lakes to the west, and to the meeting of the 
Cannon and Straight (Owatonna) rivers, it was to him indeed a 
paradise; yet he knew the white man, and realized with a sigh 
its future and manifest destiny. 

"I hear the tread of pioneers, 

Of nations yet to be; 
The first low wash of waves where soon 

Will roll a human sea." 


Such a scene of beauty as well as of lavish and undeveloped 
wealth could never be forgotten by one whose innate love of 
Nature was so strong. So in 1834 he returned to his early camp- 
ing ground, where years after he became a large land-holder and 
the principal proprietor of the city which bears his name. 

The Faribault family came from Le Mans, France, where 
there are few who bear the name. The American branch are 
descendants of Bernard Faribault, Royal Bailiff, who was born 
at Montbizot, on the Sarthe River, in 1669. He married three 
times and left numerous children, and died on May 5, 1741 at 
the age of seventy-two. 

Berthelemy Faribault, the son of Bernard by his third wife, 
Madeline Hanion (the widow Bounnault), was born at Mont- 
bizot in 1713. He resided in Paris and practiced as an attorney. 
In 1757, at the order of the French government, he sailed for 
Canada to take an important position in the French army, which 
was then under the command of the Marquis de Duquesne. He 
held this position until the end of the unfortunate war which 
decided the destiny of the French in America. Because of the 
feeling between the two great nations which had for so long a 
time fought for pre-eminence, Faribault went to Berthier, one 
of the oldest parishes in Canada, where he chose the profession 
of a notary. He died on June 20, 1801, at the age of eighty- 
eight, leaving ten children. 

Jean Baptiste Faribault, the seventh son of Berthelemy Fari- 
bault, was born at Berthier in 1774. He had the good fortune to 
secure a fair education, and left school at the age of sixteen to 
accept a position with a merchant in Quebec. But notwithstand- 
ing the fact that lie was held in the highest esteem, young Fari- 
bault could not bring himself to spend the greater part of his 
life behind a counter. The spirit of adventure drew him from 
his native country, and choosing the free life of a fur trader, he 
followed in the wake of Marquette, Hennepin and Du Luth to 
that vast theatre where he could accomplish greater things. An 
incident decided him to become a soldier. The Duke of Kent, 
father of Queen Victoria, came to Canada with his regiment of 
Royal Fusiliers. His command was quartered in Quebec, and 
the parading of the soldiers was considered a splendid spectacle. 
The brilliant uniforms of the prince and his officers and the 
precise movements of the soldiers so charmed Faribault that 
he made a sketch of them that called forth great admiration. 
Although he had never taken lessons in drawing his sketches 
showed talent and taste, The officers of the regimenl communi- 
cated with the duke, who offered young Faribault a commission. 
He would have accepted but for the opposition of his family, and 
regretfully renounced the brilliant prospect which had been of- 


fered him. During his old age he frequently recalled the inci- 
dent saying that but for his respect for his parents nothing 
would have prevented him from leading a military life. The duke 
permitted young Faribault to name a friend to fill the post which 
he had declined, and the memoirs of Faribault state that the 
favor was conferred on young de Salsberry, who received his 
commission in 1791. De Salsberry was burning to enter the 
service as a soldier, and amply justified the choice of his friend 
in many dashing exploits, preludes to the victory of Chateauquay, 
which he immortalized by his heroic bravery. 

Faribault, with three other active young men, was selected 
two years later by "The Company of the Northwest" to trade 
with the Indians. Again his parents begged him not to leave 
the parental roof, but this time, fascinated by the prospect of 
adventure in the unknown, he was insensible to their remon- 
strances. In June 1796 he left Montreal with his three com- 
panions for Michillimackinac. Braving all difficulties, the hard 
life and travel by canoes and through trackless forests, with the 
necessity of transporting their baggage and provisions on their 
shoulders over portages, he and his companions reached their 
destination in twelve days, when he was given charge by Gov- 
ernor Harrison of a trading post at Kankaki, a pretty village, half 
French and half American, within the territory of the United 
States. Aided by three Canadian voyageurs, he located the post 
at the mouth of the Kankaki river, where he conducted a lucra- 
tive business with the Indians, and, the spring following, with 
the precious furs he had acquired, he reported at Machillimack- 
inac to succeed there the agent of "The Company of the North- 
west," who later, recognizing his services, gave him a more im- 
portant post, that of Baton Rouge (Red Wood), on the Des 
Moines river, where he soon acquired a knowledge of the Sioux 
language. Here he remained for four years in almost complete 
solitude. The region abounded in wild, fur-bearing animals of 
all kinds, and was inhabited by the Sioux, Sacs, Renards and 
Ioouas (Iowas). Traders and voyageurs passed the winter in 
huts or in trunks of trees, and in the spring visited the different 
camps to secure the proceeds of the winter's trapping. 

His engagement terminated, Faribault proposed to return to 
Canada, when he learned with grief of the sudden death of his 
father and mother. This double sorrow decided him to continue 
in the service of "The Company of the Northwest," and in the 
winter of 1802 he was given a trading post on the River St. Pierre 
(St. Peter — now the Minnesota), where he carried on profitable 
trading with the Sioux. Here he was severely wounded in at- 
tempting to defend a friend from the attack of an Indian. After 
a sojourn of three years Faribault married the widow of Mr. 


Hanse, who had previously been superintendent of Indians. This 
marriage caused him to decide definitely to remain in the midst 
of the adventurous West. He was at this time thirty-one, and 
his wife twenty-two, years of age. 

In August, 1SG5, Lieut. Zebulon M. Pike, U. S. A., who was 
commissioned by the government "to examine the country upon 
the upper Mississippi, and maintain the interests of the govern- 
ment," ascended the "Father of Waters" from St. Louis, and 
mentions having been hospitably entertained by J. B. Faribault, 
a French Canadian fur trader, on the banks of the St. Pierre 
river, near the present site of St. Paul. 

Hostilities having been declared in the autumn of 1808 be- 
tween the Sioux and the Sauteaux (Chippewas) Faribault, not- 
withstanding the dangers, determined to pass the following 
winter with the Sioux Yankton, on the River Des Moines. His 
further progress was arrested by the Ioouas, who threatened to 
kill him and rob him of his merchandise, but he was rescued 
by a large band of Yanktons, who escorted him to the post of 
the company. By the following spring he had secured a large 
quantity of pelts. After ten years of service with the company, 
he chose Prairie-du-Chien for his trading post, where for many 
years he was prosperous, as it was frequented by the Ouine- 
bagons, Renards, and Sioux of the Ouakpe-Kouta band. 

Anticipating the War of 1812, the English made strenuous ef- 
forts to enlist the Indians of the Northwest to take up arms 
against the Americans; and the traders, mostly Canadians, who 
had much influence over the tribes, were offered commissions to 
espouse the British cause. All accepted with the exception of 
Jean Baptiste Faribault and Louis Provencalle, who lent their 
heartiest service to the United States. Colonel McCall, having 
been informed of their refusal, had Faribault arrested and im- 
prisoned on board a gunboat commanded by Captain Anderson, 
who was transporting to Prairie-du-Chien a troop for the pur- 
pose of attacking the American garrison there. They wished to 
force Faribault to take his turn at the oar, but he firmly replied 
that he was a gentleman, and coidd not consent to do such 
service. Colonel McCall, instead of punishing him for his haughty 
response, admired his courage, admitted him to his own boat, and 
treated him with marked attention. The English soldiers, to- 
gether with the Canadians and Indians, on their arrival at 
Prairie-du-Chien, prepared to storm the American garrison. At 
their approach the families who resided on the outskirts of the 
post precipitately abandoned their homes, Mrs. Faribault and 
her children among the number, and ascended the Mis-Mssippi 
in canoes to what is now Winona (Ouinnona — "the eldest daugh- 
ter"). She supposed her husband to have proceeded to Mack- 


inac, having no idea he was a prisoner in the hands of the Eng- 
lish, and later his courageous wife, ignoring the fact, returned to 
Prairie-du-Chien. After an energetic resistance of three days 
the fort surrendered and Faribault was released on parole, it 
being thought that his hostility could in this manner be better 
gauged. During the siege his house had been burned, his cattle 
killed, and his merchandise pillaged to the extent of $12,000 
This ruined him, taking from him the profits of many years an'd 
of labor incalculable. However, he did not lose his indomitable 
courage, and with renewed ardor commenced to repair his broken 
fortune. His wife had found refuge with the Sioux, and these 
Indians now brought him game and pelts in abundance. 

The English having abandoned Prairie-du-Chien, the fort 
was rebuilt by the Americans under the command of Colonel 
Chambers. Faribault now became a naturalized citizen of the 
United States, and took an active part in defending the frontier, 
organizing a military company, of which he became first lieu- 

"The Company of the Northwest" had sold in 1809 their 
rights to the "American Fur Company," of which John Jacob 
Astor was the founder. Joseph Rolette was the agent, and from 
him Faribault purchased supplies, and again commenced trading, 
which he successfully conducted until 1819, when he located with 
Colonel Leavenworth, near Fort Snelling, where he was soon 
joined by his family. Colonel Leavenworth had offered Fari- 
bault because of his intelligence, character, and extensive knowl- 
edge of the Sioux, all possible encouragement to accompany him. 
At this time Minnesota was a region where civilization had never 
penetrated. In 1821 Colonel Leavenworth obtained from the 
Sioux 9,000 acres of land at the confluence of the Mississippi and 
Minnesota rivers, now Fort Snelling. Moreover, the Indians 
by this treaty ceded their right to the Isle of Pike to Mrs. Fari- 
bault "and her descendants, the said Pilagie Faribault being the 
daughter of Francois Kinie, whose wife was one of our nation." 
The right of Faribault to this island was later presented in con- 
gress by S. C. Stambough and Alexis Badly, acting as attorneys 
for J. F>. Faribault. In 1822 the high water of the Mississippi 
submerged the entire island, and Faribault established himself 
on the opposite plateau, where again unprecedented floods com- 
pletely devastated the location, carrying oft" his house, drowning 
his cattle, and leaving everywhere traces of disaster. Colonel 
Snelling, however, most fortunately rescued Faribault's family 
and saved his most valuable pelts. 

About 1826 Faribault located at Mcndota and traded with the 
Sioux, the wildest tribe of the West. Notwithstanding their 
friendship for him he was frequently in great danger, and on one 


occasion for a trivial matter an Indian plunged a knife into Fari- 
bault's back, but his vigorous constitution and temperate habits 
carried him through. The Indian, however, was summarily shot 
by one of Faribault's sons, Oliver, a boy of fourteen. 

For sixty years the voice of Faribault was heard in the In- 
dian councils. He held their confidence, he settled their differ- 
ences, gave them a good example, lessened their superstitions, 
brought to them Christian sentiments by gentle persuasion, and 
he truly merited the title of pioneer evangelist. Having their 
confidence he was able to settle impartially their differences, 
and was given the name of "Beaver Tail" (Ca-pa-Sin-te or Chah- 
pah-cin-ta) because of his intelligence. It is pleasant to com- 
pare the conduct of Faribault with that of other traders, who, 
far from trying to exercise an elevating influence over the In- 
dians, taught them the vices of a pretended civilization. He 
passed forty years in the wilds of the West without receiving 
religious consolation — a great privation to this courageous pio- 
neer. It is difficult to comprehend the joy which was his when, 
in 1817, he accidentally met a priest in the solitudes of the forest, 
who blessed his marriage and baptized his children. In 1840 he 
found Abbe Gultier dying at Fort Snelling, and taking him to 
his own home carefully nursed him during the remainder of his 
life. Moreover, he erected and placed at his service a chapel 
for the Canadians and Indians, the first where Catholic prayers 
were heard in the state of Minnesota. When Abbe Ravoux, 
Vicar General of St. Paul, came from France in 1843 to replace 
Abbe Gultier, he also enjoyed the hospitality of Faribault until 
he had mastered the Sioux dialect. 

General Sibley wrote, in part, "It is now thirty years that I 
have known Jean Baptiste Faribault, and Alexander, his son. 
Of all the pioneers of Minnesota there is not one whose name 
merits more respect, and who should be honored more, than 
Jean Baptiste Faribault. They were always truly my friends, 
and have merited it. They have shown a constant devotion to 
the Catholic religion, and were men of exemplary pietj ." Min- 
nesota wished to recognize the services of Jean Baptiste Fari- 
bault, and did so by giving his name to one of its counties. 

The wife of Jean Baptiste Faribault died at Mendota June 
19, 1847. He survived his wife many years, enjoying the af- 
fection of his family and fellow-citizens, until August 20, 1860, 
when he departed this life at the age of eighty-seven at Fari- 
bault in the home of his daughter, Mrs. Major Fowler. He had 
long been prepared For the end, and passed to the great Beyond 
without regret, full of resignation, with the joy of a soul eager to 
participate in eternal joys, lie had lived to realize his dreams, 
1" see the marvelous development of the unknown west, which 


he had found in its virgin state. He was laid to rest beside his 
children, grandchildren and other relatives and friends of later 
years, in Calvary cemetery, on the outskirts of the town which 
bears his name. 

Such, in mere outline, is the story of the life of this un- 
daunted Canadian, who more than one hundred years ago played 
a significant part in the settlement of the Northwest, and es- 
pecially of Minnesota. Connected with the most important com- 
mercial company that ever existed in the Northwest, carried on 
irresistably by his enthusiasm to regions unknown, always ready 
for new dangers, looking death unflinchingly in the face again 
and again, he lived, through infinite vicissitudes, his honorable 

Returning to Alexander Faribault, the eldest son of Jean 
Baptiste Faribault, we find a life interwoven with the develop- 
ment of the great Northwest almost as closely as that of his 
father. Alexander was born June 22, 1806 at Prairie-du-Chien, 
then within the Louisiana Purchase, and was the founder and 
principal proprietor of the town to which he gave his name. Be- 
cause of a modest and retiring nature much concerning his in- 
teresting life will never be known. About the year 1820 we find 
him on the banks of the St. Peter (now Minnesota) river, and 
the following year located permanently at Mendota, then in the 
territory of Michigan, as a United States licensed trader, having 
outposts throughout the territory. It was at this time that he 
improved the opportunity to cultivate his English studies through 
the courtesy of the United States officers at Fort Snelling. He 
was married November 1, 1825, to Mary Elizabeth Graham, the 
daughter of Capt. Duncan Graham. She was born July 15, 1805, 
and died April 8, 1875, at the age of sixty-nine years, at Eliza- 
beth, in Otter Tail county. He became the father of ten children, 
namely, George H., Agnes, Emely, Daniel, Catherine, Philip, 
Julia, Nathalie, William Richard and A. Leon. The spring fol- 
lowing his marriage, while with voyageurs visiting the outposts 
on the upper Minnesota river, an Indian gave his life to rescue 
Faribault and his young wife and companions. 

During 1826 to 1829 he traded on the Cannon river, under 
a license from the American Fur Company, successors of "The 
Northwest Fur Company," and established a post at Lake 
Sakata, near the site of the town of Waterville, and in 1831 he 
located at what is now Morristown. The following year he re- 
moved to a point between Wells and Cannon lakes. The country 
was then peopled by the Dakotas, who called what is now known 
as Cannon lake, Me-da-te-pe-ton-ka ("Lake of the Big Village"). 
In 1834 he influenced the Sioux to move to the site of the present 
town of Faribault. They occupied all that tract between Division 


and Fourteenth streets on the west side of Straight (Owatonna) 
river, and the plateau was covered with the picturesque encamp- 
ment of bark and buffalo-skin tepes. In 1835 he built the first 
log house on the east side of Straight river, northeast of the 
Front Street bridge, and several log houses on what is now the 
Travis farm, on the road to Cannon City. This tract was then 
covered with a dense growth of maple which afforded abundance 
of sugar. The first regular trading post was of logs, built the 
same year, midway between the Straight river stone mills and 
Front street bridge. These buildings were afterward occupied 
by Peter Bush and family and as a blacksmith shop, and were 
later known as "Hotel Bush." This humble building gave shelter 
to early settlers, among them several of our most distinguished 
citizens. In the winter of 1853 Faribault built a temporary log 
house on the southeast corner of what is now Third street and 
First avenue east, while the first frame house in Rice county, 
surrounded by a stockade, was being erected on the northwest 
corner of First avenue east and Division street, which was com- 
pleted in 1853. The materials for this structure were hauled 
from St. Paul and Hastings. 

The early territorial settlers will recollect the sturdy pioneers 
Jim Mabon, Jean Cluckey, St. L'Ous, Craidgie, St. Jarmont, 
Payne, Howard, Wilson, Beaupre, McBeal, Louis Demara and 
Pierre LaPoint and others, who assisted in the construction of 
these notable and historic structures. 

In 1851 Mr. Faribault was one of the official interpreters at 
the St. Peter (Traverse-de-Sioux) treaty, when the Indians re- 
linquished to the government 45,000 square miles lying on the 
western side of the Mississippi. By this treaty and that of Men- 
dota the Indians gave up their right of usufruct to all the country 
previously claimed by them east of the Sioux Wood and Big 
Sioux rivers. He also reported Little Crow's speech at the sec- 
ond treaty of 1851 at Pilot Knob, near Mendota. He was also 
a member of the legislature from the Seventh district in 1851, 
and a witness, with Sibley and others, before the United States 
Court, in charges of fraud in Indian affairs. He was among the 
first to offer inducements to Dr. Breck and to Bishop Whipple, to 
whom lie gave ten acres of land for their schools, contributing 
liberally in money and lands afterwards. Following the treaty 
of 1851, which was forced upon the Sioux, many of the Wah-pe- 
ku-tes (Wapakootas — Leaf Shooters) would not live on the reser- 
vation at Red Wood and remained at Faribault and were given 
by Mr. Faribault the use of lands, and otherwise provided for. 
sending their children to the private schools maintained at his 
expense. Among them was George St. Clair, who afterward 
became a clergyman in the Episcopal Church. After the out- 


break of 1862 Mr. Faribault assisted Bishop Whipple further in 
locating the non-participants, among whom were Wounded Man 
(Taopi), Good Thunder (Marpiya Washta), and Iron Shield 
( Wah-hah-chan-ka-maza) , who were General Sibley's scouts and 
saved many white settlers from massacre. The writer, then a 
new-comer to the West, will never forget a council in the Fari- 
bault house on the bluffs, where he witnessed the payment of 
several thousand dollars by Dr. J. W r . Daniels, the representative 
of the government, to these Indian men and women as a reward 
for their loyalty and services in rescuing many settlers from the 

Straight river mills were commenced by Mr. Faribault in 
1858, and the Le Croix came from Montreal to superintend the 
construction, also that of the mill on Cannon river, known as the 
"Polar Star Mills," together with the mill on Straight river near 
Fourteenth street. 

As early as 1837 Mr. Faribault visited Washington with 
Major Taliaferro, General Sibley, and a delegation of Indians to 
conduct treaty negotiations with the government. He was one 
of the memorialists to congress in connection with the organiza- 
tion of Minnesota territory, and a charter member of the Minne- 
sota Historical Society. With General Sibley he was a principal 
stockholder in the Borup and Oakes Bank, and was associated 
with General Sibley and William R. Marshall in organizing a 
bank in St. Paul in 1855. He was with General Sibley in the 
Sioux war of 1862 until the release of the white captives at Camp 
Release, near the town of Montevideo, Minnesota, and was among 
the few fortunate ones who escaped alive at the Battle of Birch 

Until 1852 Alexander F'aribault maintained his family home 
at Mendota, where also resided his father and family in the stone 
house built by the latter in 1826, which is still standing. He 
built the first Catholic Church in Faribault in 1855, for the Rev. 
George Keller — a frame structure which was burned in 1857. 
He was the generous donor of the site of the present church, 
and gave at a cost of $3,000 the first bell for the Church of 
the Immaculate Conception, the church which now stands on the 
site of the one burned in 1857. This bell was destroyed when the 
building was partially burned, June 30, 1903. Mr. Faribault is 
also to be credited with many liberal gifts to the St. Paul and 
Mendota Churches. 

In 1856 Mr. Faribault built his last home at Faribault — his 
early camping ground — on the Straight river bluffs, now crowned 
with magnificent institutions, overlooking the site of his pioneer 
trading post of 1843. In 1873 he sold this home to the state of 
Minnesota ; the building now being used at the School for Blind. 


One can imagine his emotions as he recalled this scene as he had 
beheld it in 1826. It was now the white man's country; settlers 
were fast taking homes; the town already numbered 1,000; the 
frontiers-man with his vices and corruption was being crowded 
westward ; and the lords of the forest and lake and prairie had 
no rights, but were the prey and dupe of the white, who smoked 
the pipe of peace no longer. The buffalo — the food, clothing and 
shelter of the Red Man, was fast disappearing. The Indians 
had but one hope of existence and that was Alexander Faribault. 
He sheltered and fed them and their children. His hand and 
store house were ever open to the Dakota (Codah — friend) and 
the white man. His promise was absolute, and as the Rev. 
Samuel W. Pond, veteran missionary, in his "Recollections of 
the Dakotas as they were in 1834" states, "Alexander Faribault 
and his father were favorites and highly respected by all who 
knew them." His name was always associated with all charities. 
We honor him because he ennobled his race. He lost wealth, 
but not respect nor honor, and history calls his life a success. 

After a long and eventful life Alexander Faribault passed 
away November 28, 1882, at Faribault, and was laid to rest in 
Calvary cemetery with his kindred and other pioneer neighbors — 
that hill-top where once flashed the red signal fire of alarm to 
the Big Village braves. And where the lodges of the Wah-pe- 
ku-te were once as numerous as now the shocks of corn, and the 
wierd chant and wild screech of the scalp-dance echoed through 
the peaceful valley of the Cannon, the plow and sickle have 
levelled the Indian burial mounds on the shore of the lake of 
the Big Village ; the flashing paddles are stilled and an occasional 
arrow-head, stone hammer or broken clay utensil are all that is 
left to tell the story of a vanishing race. 

"Behind the red squaw's birch canoe 

The steamer smokes and raves, 
And city lots are staked for sale 

Above old Indian graves." 

Note — The writer is indebted to William Richard Faribault 
of St. Louis, Mo., a son of Alexander Faribault, for many inci- 
dents and data used in these biographical sketches. — Stephen 



Alexander Faribault Located in Rice County as a Trader — In- 
duces Indians to Settle Near the Confluence of the Straight 
and Cannon Rivers — Takes up His Own Residence on the 
Bluffs East of the River — Builds Trading Post and Log 
House in 1835 — Sends Followers West of the River to Start 
a Farm — Entertains Many Friends — Peter Bush Arrives — 
Crump, Standish and Gekler Select a Claim — Luke Hulett, 
Mark Wells, Levi Nutting and Others Make Trip from Saint 
Paul — James Wells Takes a Claim — The First Winter at 
Faribault — First Frame House Built — Settlers Begin to Ar- 
rive in Larger Numbers — Experiences of the Pioneers. 

Alexander Faribault came to the region of the Cannon river 
as a trader with the Indians in 1826 and between that date and 
1834 established three trading posts in this vicinity, one at Lake 
Sakata, on the present site of Waterville, one at the present site 
of Morristown, and one on the northwest shore of Cannon lake, 
between that body of water and Rice lake, the latter being 
located near the old Indian village, which gave to Cannon lake 
its Indian name of Me-da-te-pe-ton-ka, or the Lake of the Big 
Village. This designation is vouched for by no less a person 
than Richard Faribault, son of Alexander Faribault, though 
earlier historians of the county have given the Indian name as 
Te-ton-ka To-nah. These trading points were occupied at suit- 
able seasons of the year, not only by Faribault and his assistants, 
but also by many visitors, including the officers at Fort Snelling. 

After eight years, however, Mr. Faribault having mastered 
thoroughly the geography of the country decided that the most 
favorable location in this locality for a trading post was on the 
bluffs near the junction of the Straight and Cannon rivers. Near 
that point he would be in direct touch with the Indians descend- 
ing the Straight river as well as with all who descended the 
Cannon from the lake region beyond. He accordingly pursuaded 
the Indians to leave their ancient habitation on the shores of 
Cannon lake and move to the present site of Faribault. 

They occupied all that tract between Division and Four- 
teenth streets on the west side of the Straight river, and the 
plateau was covered with the picturesque encampment of bark 



and buffalo skin teepees. In 1835 Mr. Faribault erected the first 
log house on the east side of Straight river, northeast of the 
Front street bridge, and several log houses on what is now 
the Travis farm, on the road to Cannon city. This tract was 
then covered with a dense growth of maple which afforded 
abundance of sugar. The first regular trading post was of logs, 
built the same year, midway between the Straight river stone 
mills and Front street bridge. 

With far seeing eye, Faribault readily understood that the 
time was soon coming, when the prairies of southern Minnesota 
would be open to white settlement, and the days of the hunter, 
trapper and fur trader would pass away. Therefore he decided 
to prepare for the coming of civilization by opening a farm on 
the present site of the city of Faribault. Accordingly in 1844 
he sent Joseph Dashner and Hypolite Martin across the river to 
open up a farm and take charge of it for him. Three years after- 
wards, Alexander Graham, brother of Mrs. Faribault, together 
with Mr. Brunei, his wife and one child, all of whom were French 
Canadians, came to take charge of the farm. About this time. 
John Rix was employed to cook and help care for the stock, and 
after a time Peter St. Antone and his wife came to relieve Mr. 

In the meantime, Faribault occupied his log house a few 
months each year, and entertained extensively, among his guests 
being General Sibley. Major Forbes and others, many of whom 
sometimes brought their families, so that the location became 
well known. 

When no whites were present, the Indians occupied the 
houses, and no doubt enjoyed themselves greatly, partaking of 
this sort of white man's comfort. 

The real settlement of the city dates from the early spring <>i 
185.3, when Peter Hush, a blacksmith, arrived and settled in the 
buildings which had been erected by Faribault, also using the 
cabins on the Travis farm as a sugar cam]). Bush broughl with 
him his family, and since that date there has been continuous 
white settlement of this locality. 

About this time, or possibly a little earlier. F. J. Crump, the 
Rev. Standish and John Gekler. under the direction of an eastern 
company, selected a claim and erected a cabin. May 2. 1853, Mr 
Crump and his wife crossed the Straight river and took up their 
habitation. Later in the month Luke llulett came, and accord- 
ing to his statement made in later life there were then actually 
living here, Peter Bush and family. Edward LeMay, Narcissi- 
Arpan, Henr) Millard, Joseph Dashner. E. J. Crump and a Rev. 
Mr. Standish. all this part} being housed in five small log cabins. 

With Luke llulett came Levi Nutting, and a party of young 


men consisting of Mark Wells, A. McKinzie, Mr. Boynton and 
others. Mr. Hulett settled here, as did Mark Wells and A. Mc- 
Kinzie. Levi Nutting did not stay that year but came back- 
later. The other young men decided that they could make 
money faster elsewhere, and sought other fields. 

In the same season of the year came James Wells, "Bully" 
Wells, as he was called, who opened a farm on the Cannon 
bottoms, just above the city. 

A little party spent the winter of 1853 in the embryo village, 
awaiting the opening of the spring which would bring a new- 
influx of settlers, and new supplies of provisions. According to 
an article written by Luke Hulett, shortly before his death, the 
residents of Faribault, in the winter of 1853 were Alexander 
Faribault and family, Luke Hulett and family, James Wells and 
family, Frederick Faribault and family, Edward J. Crump and 
wife, Peter Bush and family, Mr. Sprague and wife, Mr. Springer 
and wife and the following young unmarried people. Norbert 
Paquin, Smith Johnson, Orlondo Johnson, John Hulett, Hugh 
McClelland, Mark Wells, A. McKenzie, Robert Smith and Theo- 
dore Smith. 

In this winter (1853), Faribault built a temporary log house 
on the southeast corner of what is now Third street and Fifth 
avenue, east, while the first frame house in Rice county, sur- 
rounded by a stockade, was being erected on the northwest corner 
of First avenue, east, and Division street, the house being com- 
pleted in 1853. The materials for this structure were hauled 
from St. Paul and Hastings. 

The spring and summer of 1854, according to the same author- 
ity, brought the following accessions: John Morris, who subse- 
quently laid out Morristown, Major Babcock, Truman Bass, Mr. 
Tripp who was the first to settle on East Prairie, Dennis O'Brien, 
Mr. Travis, J. R. Parshall and James and Henry Scott, who built 
the first saw-mill in the town. The Searses, father and son, 
in the fall of 1854 located in Cannon City and became formidable 
competitors for the county seat. Judge Woodman came about 
this time, and also William Dunn, who secured a claim east of 
Cannon City. Mr. Drake and others settled near Northfield. 

F. W. Frink, in 1876, delivered an Independence Day oration, 
giving the early history of the county which we here preserve 
for future reference. 

Rice county is named for Henry M. Rice, an early settler in 
Minnesota, and a warm friend of him who gave to the city of 
Faribault his name and here made his dwelling place. 

Although it was not until October, 1855, that Rice county 
held an election as a separate organization, Alexander Faribault 
had conducted trading posts in this region since 1826. He was 


the first settler of Rice county. Leaving out the numerous rela- 
tives, friends and helpers of Faribault who came here from year 
to year, the next white settler was Peter Bush. In the spring 
of 1853 Luke Hulett, after having made a trip to the locality. 
came here with his family, and with him the settlement of the 
county really begins, for the first settlement of a farmer in an 
agricultural region is the beginning of its history. Alexander 
Faribault, Luke Hulett and Peter Bush should be considered 
the founders of the first settlement in Rice county. 

The history of the towns and villages of Rice county begins 
at an early date. Faribault, Northfield, Morrislown and Cannon 
City were surveyed, platted and recorded in the order named. 

Alexander Faribault, F. B. Sibley, John W. North and Porter 
Nutting filed the plat of the town of Faribault in the office of 
the register of deeds in Dakota county, to which county Rice 
county was then attached for judicial purposes, February 17, 
1855. Previous to this date, however, a preliminary survey 
had been made and Walter Morris owned the share after- 
ward represented by John W. North. 

In August, 1855, Mr. North having disposed of his interest 
in Faribault, while searching for another promising location, se- 
lected the site of the present city of Northfield, and on March 
7, 1856, filed the plat in the office of the register of deeds in 
Rice county, which was then an office a little over two months 

A plat of Cannon City had been made almost as early as 
that of Faribault, but owing to the fact that the plat had been 
made without the usual formality of a preceding survey, it was 
thought best by the proprietors, after a vain attempt to har- 
monize conflicting interests caused by conflicting boun- 
dary lines, to have a survey made, the plat of which was not 
filed for record until the eleventh day of November, 1856, but 
previous to that date it was a town of sufficient force to give 
Faribault a lively race in a contest for the location of the 
count\- seat. 

April 1, 1856, Mrs. Sarah Morris, mother of Walter Morris, 
one of the fust proprietors of the town of Faribault, and widow 
of Jonathan Morris, one of the first settlers of Morristown, 
filed and recorded the plat of Morristown. 

These were the first born towns of Rice county, but the times 
were then prolific in the birth of towns and cities, and the eye of 
the speculator saw beside every crystal lake or limpid stream a 
site for a city full of the possibilities of future glory. Numerous 
additions were surveyed and added to towns already recorded. 
The new towns of Wheatland, Wedgewood, Warsaw, W'alcott, 
Shieldsvillc, Dundas, Millersbiirg, East Prairieville. and Lake 


City were added to the list. Of these, some are dead and some 
are dying, and nearly all remaining have from time to time, 
by vacations obtained through the courts, contracted their vast 
circumference in conformity with the request made at an early 
day to the territorial legislature to limit the area of town sites, 
and reserve certain portions of the public domain for agricul- 
tural purposes. 

While, however, visionary speculators were creating town 
sites and multiplying town lots with almost as much facility as 
farmers increased the number of their pigs or chickens, the agri- 
cultural interest was also thriving until the year 1858, when 
occurred the nearest to a failure of crops thai Rice county has 
ever experienced. The land office had been located in Faribault 
the year previous, and the little store of money that most of the 
settlers had brought with them had been generally used in pay- 
ment for their lands. The prospect was gloomy, and many 
families anticipated actual want before the coming of another 
harvest ; but the silver lining to the cloud was not long obscured, 
and relief came from a quarter as little looked for as was the 
manna in the wilderness by the Israelites. By somebody the 
happy discovery was made that our timbered lands were full 
of ginseng, the sovereign balm for every ill that Chinese flesh 
is heir to, and forthwith our population was transferred into a 
community of diggers, and many a man, and even woman, too, 
who had never earned more than a dollar a day before, received 
from two to four dollars for their day's labor in the woods. Thus 
was Rice county's darkest hour tided over, and from that day 
to this there has never been a time when its citizens have had 
reason to fear a lack of the necessaries of life. 

The statistics of crops for 1860, previous to which no record 
is obtainable, show 18.000 acres under cultivation in various . 
fruits and grains, with a product of 260,000 bushels of wheat. 
Five years later the cultivated area had increased to 25,000 acres, 
with a product of 325,000 bushels of wheat; in 1872, 56,672 
acres were cultivated, and 548,000 bushels of wheat produced, 
while the wheat crop alone, of Rice county, reached nearly 
700,000 bushels in the year 1875. Yet this county must not be 
judged as an agricultural district by the amount of wheat it 
raises, although that cereal is still the one the most relied upon 
by our farmers as a source of income ; yet, as more than two- 
thirds of its area is or has been timbered land, is not so well 
adapted to growing wheat extensively as a prairie country, its 
agricultural productions are necessarily more diversified. 

The population of the county, as indicated by the number 
of votes cast at is first election, which, being a county seat 
contest, probably brought out as large a proportion of legal 


voters as could be summoned on any occasion, was. in 1855, be- 
tween 1,500 and 2,000, the number of votes cast being 384. 
In 1860, the first census, it was 7,886; in 1865, 10,966; in 1870, 
16,399, and the census of 1880 makes the number 20,622. 

While Rice county, more fortunately situated than some 
of her western sisters, never experienced any of the horrors of 
Indian warfare, yet her history would not be complete without 
mention of its terrible fright in the winter of 1857. There 
are doubtless some of the present audience who will remem- 
ber how panic-stricken we were when the news came through 
some mysterious channel that the Indians had sacked and de- 
stroyed St. Peter, only forty miles away, and were in rapid 
march for Faribault. General Shields, by reason of his military 
experience, was made commander-in-chief of all the forces in, 
and around Faribault, with headquarters at the head of the 
stairs in the old Faribault House, and all of our brave young 
men who could be armed with shot-guns, rusty pistols, or any- 
thing having the appearance of firearms, were posted on guard 
at all the principal thoroughfares leading into town, and in 
front of the houses of the most timid and defenseless. This 
state of affairs lasted all of one night and until time of changing 
guard the next, when the relief, finding that the extreme cold 
had induced the guards to seek the inside of the houses they 
were defending, retreated in good order to more comfortable 
quarters, and our first Indian war was over. The cause of the 
panic was afterward ascertained to be the Spirit Lake massacre, 
more than a hundred miles away, by Inkpadutah and his band of 
outlawed Sioux. 

It should be here chronicled, however, that when the war 
actually came, although it came no nearer than Mason and 
Dixon's line, Rice county bore its full share of its responsi- 
bilities, losses, and calamities right manfully. The war of the 
Rebellion found us nurtured in the arts of peace, a happy and 
home-loving people, and yet, before its close more than a thou- 
sand of its bravest and best had volunteered to defend the 
flag they loved so well. How well they bore themselves on the 
battlefield, the number of the unreturning brave whose "graves 
are severed far and wide by mountain, stream, and sea," too 
well attests. The records show that more than one-eighth of 
the number shown by the census of the year before the break- 
ing out of the great rebellion as the entire population of the 
county had enlisted in the Union army before its close, a record 
of which our citizens may well be proud. 

From this brief sketch it will appear that the history of our 
county has not been eventful in the light in which the historian 
usually regards events. It has been the scene of no fierce con- 


flict of arms, and within our borders no monumental marble rises 
to commemorate bloody victories won, or the heroic deeds of 
knightly chivalry, which contribute so largely to the romance 
of history. Nevertheless, is our history full of those "victories 
not less renowned than war," victories which in less than 
a quarter of a century after the extinguishment of the Indians' 
title to these lands, without bloodshed, swept away every vestige 
of their barbarous life, and substituted the school, the church, 
and on every hand happy and contented homes; victories which 
vanquished the hearts of our suffering people on the frontier 
when Rice county was the first to send relief after the devasta- 
tion from hail and fire in the memorable year 1871. The suffer- 
ing people of Chicago, northern Wisconsin, and Michigan were 
subjugated by the munificent donations sent to their relief in 
that terrible year of fire, and of those donations Rice county 
gave with no sparing hand. These are the victories not less 
renowned than war of which our county can boast. Victories 
over a stubborn soil, turning a wild waste into fruitful fields 
and happy homes. Victories over ignorance and superstition 
best shown by the maintenance and prosperity of a free press 
and the public school. Victories over the selfishness of human 
nature in devoting so large a share of our worldly goods in the 
relief of suffering humanity ai home and abroad, and above all 
it was a grand and glorious victory when the echoing of Sum- 
ter's guns found response in a thousand brave hearts ready 
to give their lives for their country. These are the victories 
which give assurance that government of the people, by the peo- 
ple, and for the people, can longest endure supported and de- 
fended by a peace-loving, generous, and intelligent people. 

Henry M. Rice, at the Old Settlers' reunion in 1875, deliv- 
ered a speech in which he recounted the story of a trip taken in 
1844, during which he passed the present site of Faribault. The 
account, in part, is as follows: In 1844 General Sumner had 
command at Fort Atkinson, in Iowa, which was then Indian 
territory, and he got up an expedition to Minnesota, and invited 
Mr. Rice to accompany the party. They had no wagons along, 
but only pack mules to carry provisions. Arriving at the con- 
fluence of the Straight and Cannon rivers, they found Alexander 
Faribault, and he was engaged as a guide. Up to this point they 
had not met a human being, but they pushed on and swung 
around to Fort Snelling, up the Minnesota valley to the Blue 
Earth, and so west toward the Des Moines, and thence to Shell 
Rock and Cedar River. At Shakopee there was found a brother 
of Mr. Faribault, and at St. Peter's there was a polite old French- 
man, "Mons. Provincial." General Sumner allowed Mr. Rice and 
Mr. Faribault to leave the company and hunt buffalo, and they 


soon spotted a fine animal and at once gave chase. A shot 
wounded him, and he became furious and at once reversed the 
order of things, the pursuers becoming the pursued. Mr. Rice 
was thrown from his horse, and he began to realize how rapidly 
his earthly career was drawing to a close, when Mr. Faribault, 
who was a most admirable marksman, brought down the in- 
furiated brute. On this journey the men had to swim the 
rivers holding on to their horses. In 1847 Mr. Faribault went 
with Mr. Rice on a trip up the upper Mississippi, and he never. 
as he stated, saw him more than pleasurably excited under any 

Luke Hulett was one of the earliest pioneers of Rice county. 
In the spring of 1852, Mr. Hulett. who had already had quite 
a frontier experience, was living on his farm in Wisconsin, and 
he read in the "New York Tribune" that the purchase of the 
lands west of the Mississippi from the Sioux had been effected. 
He then resolved to carry out his purpose formed long before, 
to make his home in Minnesota, and he accordingly started for 
St. Paul; but on arriving there he saw a letter from Hon. H. H. 
Sibley, the delegate in congress, stating that the treaty had been 
defeated in the senate, but he concluded not to allow a little 
circumstance like this to disarrange his plans. Low water, how- 
ever, in the Wisconsin River, prevented him from getting his 
family and effects on the road until the next spring. It seems 
that he had read in the "Milwaukee Sentinel" a truthful account 
of this region, from the pen of a gentleman who had been one 
of a surveying party to lay out a road from Lake Pepin to 
Mankato, the junction of the Straight with the Cannon river 
being a point. The description filled his idea of a place to locate, 
and he started up the Mississippi, and arrived in St. Paul on 
Sunday. May 9, 1853. He stopped at a tavern, and the land- 
lord, learning that he proposed to go to the Straight and Can- 
non rivers, advised him to stick to the water communications, 
but if he must go back into the country, that Mankato was 
the place. But Mr. Hulett had his mind made up. after a care- 
ful survey of the subject, to examine the location of which he 
had received such glowing account, and while making arrange- 
ments he formed the acquaintance of Levi Nutting, which re- 
sulted in a lasting friendship. 

Mr. Nutting, on learning that Mr. Hulett was going to ex- 
plore for a location, inquired as to his plans, and informed him 
that himself and several other young men had just arrived in 
St. Paul, and desired to find a place to locate, and the result of 
the interview was that a party of six was thus formed, and with 
an emigrant team of two horses they started from St. Paul, leav- 
ing the family there, and made the first attempt to establish a 


permanent agricultural colony in Rice county. On May 13, 1853, 
the little party crossed the Mississippi at St. Paul, to the bottom 
opposite that little hamlet. Roads then were mere trails, and 
whatever facilities for transportation existed in the country any- 
where were due to nature and not art. That spring was wet, and 
before they had got out of the bottom the wagon was mired and 
the horses had to be detached, the wagon unloaded and hauled 
by human muscle, assisted by human brain, to high ground. 
During the journey they saw no more of humanity outside of 
their own party, except two settlers' cabins near the river. The 
first night they encamped in a grove fifteen miles from St. Paul, 
and a northeast storm which had been threatening through the 
night broke upon them in the morning, and its copious stores 
continued to drench them until they arrived at the slough within 
a few miles of Cannon City, which seemed to interpose a barrier 
against further progress, as there were ten inches of water on a 
network of roots for a road bed. The horses were unhitched and 
taken over, and then the young men hauled the wagon through. 
As they entered the woods between Cannon City and Faribault 
the rain ceased and the clouds began to disperse, and the pros- 
pect that opened up before them was most charming, looked upon 
in a practical way — good timber and good water lying contigu- 
ous to good cleared land, aggregating the very desideratum for 
a pioneer settler. The varieties of timber were familiar and 
Mr. Hulett was overjoyed. As they reached the brow of the 
hill opposite the site of the old Barron House, in Faribault, 
the sun, as it was about to set, broke through the canopy of 
the clouds, casting a mellow light upon the village of Wau-pa- 
ku-ta (Wapakoota), bank of Indians, comprising some sixty 
wigwams and stretching along where Main street was after- 
ward laid out. The vision presented was most enchanting and 
the newcomers felt that they had arrived in the promised land, 
which it was proposed to occupy, whether they had a commission 
to drive out the aborigines that inhabited it or not. 

The next morning, May 15, 1853, the sun rose clear and the 
air was balmy, and having spancled the horses and set them to 
feed near where the stone mill was afterward built, the adven- 
turers ascended the hill near the present site of the Catholic 
Church. Mr. Hulett judged that this country being known, 
would be settled fast, and the indications pointed to the fact 
that it would be a business center. He therefore came to the 
conclusion that this would be his future home, and he so informed 
the young men who were with him, advising them to take a 
quarter section right there, hold on to it, and go to work and 
secure as soon as possible the two hundred dollars with which 
to pay for it. Of the number, however, only Mark Wells and A. 


McKinzie remained, Levi Nutting returning in the spring of 
1855. Five claims were found staked out in the interest of 
Alexander Faribault, whom, up to this time, Mr. Hulett had not 
heard of. While returning to St. Paul for his family, Mr. Hulett 
and Mr. Faribault met and talked over the whole business, and 
although Mr. Faribault had resolved to have a French Canadian 
settlement, he was so favorably impressed with the new comer 
that he cordially invited him to take up his settlement at the 
desirable location, that they might together work in the inter- 
ests of building up a town. Upon his return to the present site 
of Faribault, Mr. Hulett found that Peter Bush, Edward J. Crump 
and James Wells were among others that had joined the pros- 
pective settlement. 

General Levi Nutting was also one of the early settlers and 
his account of that first trip to Faribault from St. Paul is inter- 
esting. He came with Luke Hulett, Mark Wells, Mr. McKinzie 
and others. The boat they crossed the Mississippi on was a 
little larger than a hogshead ; their stock of provisions consisted 
of flour, pork, ham, tea and coffee and a few other things. The 
first night they encamped one mile from Empire City. A fire was 
built and they "turned in" with their feet toward the 
embers. During the night a coal of fire dropped upon General 
Nutting's blanket and burned a hole through it, onto the Gen- 
eral's foot, causing him considerable discomfort. In the morning 
the journey was resumed and the party passed Castle Rock in 
Dakota county. At 5 o'clock in the evening of May 5, 1853, 
the party reached Faribault and found Peter Bush living midway 
between what are now the Straight river stone mills and the 
Front street bridge. This, with the cabin of Nobert Paquin, 
were the only residences of whites at that time occupied here. 
General Nutting remained three weeks, and as he had a good 
appetite, he often declared that he really enjoyed the diet, which 
consisted of "bread and pork lor breakfast, pork and bread for 
dinner and some of both for supper." 

The stone quarry hill was an Indian "burial ground," if such 
a name can be given to a place where the bodies were hung up 
in trees, after being tied up in blankets. There were from twenty 
to thirty of these repulsive objects swaying to the breeze over 
there at one time. While some of the party almost at once took 
up their residence near here. General Nutting did not come 
back until in April, 1855. 

General Nutting once related how the town was named. Jt was 
soon after the arrival of Mr. Hulett, when a meeting was called 
at the Hotel de Bush, and as Mr. Faribault was so well known, 
his name was agreed upon and a petition drawn up and given- 
to General Sibley for a postoffice and a post route, with Alex- 


ander Faribault as postmaster and Mr. Davis as mail carrier. 

Peter Bush made the following statement as to his advent 
at this point: In 1851, he started from Beloit, Wis., to St. 
Paul, with a load of wagons, and while there met several Cana- 
dians and trappers who were acquainted with this part of the 
country, and they told him that a good place to settle w'th his 
family would be at the junction of the Straight and Cannon 
rivers, as there was water power, wood, and prairie there. In 
August, 1852, he visited the place and was pleased with it, and 
saw Mr. Faribault, who was then stopping at Mendota; he told 
Mr. Bush, however, that he did not intend to remain there long, 
but proposed to locate near the Straight and Cannon rivers 
where he had already cultivated a farm, and an agreement was 
made to come here in April, 1853, and occupy the old trading 
post, which he did. He was not in the exclusive employ of Mr. 
Faribault, but did work for him, and also for Mr. Wells. The 
first settlers after Mr. Bush, according to his recollection, were 
Mr. Wright, Mr. Lull, E. J. Crump, John Dutch, P. Standish, 
and quite a number of men who had come to work for Mr. 
Faribault. When Mr. Hulett came, there were two cows here, 
and lie wanted to get board at Mr. Bush's, who had a log house 
and a blacksmith shop opposite where St. Mary's Hall now is, 
with some land staked off, but was told that his claim would be 
jumped unless he had plenty of money to defend it, and so 
he was induced to sell it for $116, and removed to the lake, 
where he lived afterwards. 

Hon. O. F. Perkins was another early settler. His experi- 
ence related before the Old Settlers Association was as follows: 
He left Vermont in 1854, fell in with the great western bound 
flood tide of emigration, and traveled by rail to the western 
terminus of the railroad, at Galena, 111., and there took pass- 
age for St. Paul, on the Alhambra, which was two weeks making 
the trip. St. Paul then claimed 4,000 inhabitants. He went to 
St. Anthony and Minneapolis, spending the winter there. He 
had no business, but was invited to deliver an address on the 
Maine liquor law, which he then thought would be most admir- 
able for this new country, which he did with such success that 
he supposed the whole community was converted to his views. 
About that time the first suspension bridge across the Missis- 
sippi, at Minneapolis, was completed, and Mr. Perkins, at the 
celebration and banquet which followed this event, was called 
upon for a speech, and although all the public men there were 
intensely democratic, he introduced his anti-slavery views, which, 
had he been a little older he might have been a little more cau- 
tious in doing in such a presence. This, however, proved to be 


a turning point in his career, for J. W. North, hearing of the 
incident, invited him to go with him to Faribault, where just 
such daring men were wanted, and he accepted the invitation 
and rode out in a sleigh with him, being two days on the 
road. It was bitter cold, and arriving here the scene was in 
striking contrast with what would greet a visitor now. He re- 
mained a few days in mortal fear of having his scalp lifted, came 
back the following spring and opened a law office and studied 
up the claim business, boarded with Mr. Crump, and had his 
office up stairs. He afterwards moved into a blacksmith shop, 
but as business did not open up, he went to farming. He bought 
a bushel of potatoes for $2.50, and carried them to a spot of 
ground he had procured north of D. W. Humphrey's house, and 
planted them with an axe; did nothing more with them until 
fall, when the crop was sold to Dr. Charles Jewett for $35. He 
also planted some corn on the bluff near the stone quarry ; it 
came up two or three times, by the aid of the gophers, but finally 
got ready to grow, and in due time it was harvested by the 
cattle, and he concluded that raising corn was not his forte, that 
potatoes were his "best holt." Law being at a discount, he tried 
his hand at theology, and preached the first sermon, as far as he 
knew, in this region, from a book loaned him by Truman Nutting, 
and it was pure, unadulterated Calvinism, without any ''sugar 
coating." He also assisted in the formation of the first Bible 
Society ; he was the secretary, and Frank Nutting local agent. 
According to his recollection, E. J. Crump was the first justice 
of the peace, and the first case before him was a replevin case 
for a gun worth $2.50. Mr. Perkins was the prosecuting attorney, 
but the case was sworn out of the jurisdiction of the court. When 
at work as a horny-handed yeoman, carrying his potatoes to 
plant, he met John M. Berry and G. \V. Batchelder, and with his 
brother they all went to living together in a little board shanty. 

Captain E. H. Cutts came to ibis state in 1853 and stopped 
awhile in Red Wing. When he came to Faribault, that year, 
he saw and beard one of the hideous scalp dances for which this 
region was famous in the early days. The Wapakootas bad some 
Chippewa scalps and were skulking through the monotonous con- 
tortions of this sanguinary dance, accompanied with the most 
blood curdling yells. He presided over the first debating club 
here, went back to Illinois, and after marrying, returned. 

John C. Cooper came from St. Paul in June, 1854, in com- 
pany with the mail carrier who had the whole mail for the week 
on his person. It consisted of one letter and Luke Hulett's 
regular copy o\ the Tribune. 

H. M. Matteson, one of the pioneers, started for this locality 


in February, 1854, and stopped where Dundas now is, made a 
claim of some land and began to improve it by exchanging work 
with Mr. Hoyt, giving him a day's work for a day's use of his 
oxen. Not being overstocked with provisions, he caught a large 
catfish which furnished him with meat for several days. 

In 1855 began the real influx of settlement to this county, 
and the story of the early settlers in each locality is told in the 
histories of the various townships and villages. 



Rice County Created in 1853 — Its Indefinite and Extensive 
Boundaries — Four Counties Cornering at the Confluence 
of the Straight and Cannon Rivers — Western Boundary of 
Goodhue Defined in 1854 — Sibley Sent to the Legislature — 
Act Passed Defining New Boundaries — Rice County Organ- 
ized by Governor Gorman — County Seat Established at Can- 
non City — Resentment by People of Faribault — Refusal to 
Pay Taxes— Election of Officers in Fall of 1855— Faribault 
Becomes County Seat — Records Transcribed from Mendota 
Documents — Last Change of Boundary Made in 1857. 

The area that is now Rice county was a part of Wabasha 
(then spelled Wabashaw) count}', from 18-19 to 1851. From 
1851 to 1853, it was a part of Dakota (then spelled Dakotah ) 

Rice county was created by act of the territorial legislature, 
March 5, 1853. Section 7, Chapter 15 (General Laws of Minne- 
sota, 1853) gives the boundaries as follows: Beginning at the 
southwest corner of Dakota county, thence west along said 
county line to Lake Sakatah, thence south to the Iowa state line, 
thence east along said state line to the southwest corner of Fill- 
more county, thence along the west lines of Fillmore, Wabasha 
and Goodhue counties to the place of beginning. 

It will thus be seen that the starting point of Rice county, 
as then constituted, was at the "southwest corner of Dakota 
county." The west and south lines of Dakota county are 
described in the act as follows: "Beginning in the Minnesota at 
the mouth of the Credit river, thence on a direct line to the upper 
branch of the Cannon river, thence down said river to its lowest 
fork." The upper branch of the Cannon river is the Straight 
river, and consequently this boundary line of Rice county started 
at the confluence of these rivers, ran southwestward to Lake 
Sakatah ; and thence south, crossing Waseca and Freeborn coun- 
ties about on the range line between ranges twenty-two and 
twenty-three to the Iowa line. Thence it ran east to a little 
village called Granger in township 101, range eleven, Fillmore 
county. Thence it ran in a direct line, due northwest to the 
place of beginning. 



Rice county therefore took in about two-thirds of the present 
platted city of Faribault, large portions of Morristown, Warsaw 
and Walcott townships, and small portions of Wells, Cannon City 
and Richland townships in the present Rice county. It included 
the four eastern townships in Waseca townships, and all but 
the four western townships in Freeborn county. It also took 
in practically all of Mower and Steele counties, about one- 
third of Dodge, a very small portion of Fillmore and Goodhue, 
and possibly a few sections in Olmstead county. 

In February, 1854, the government survey having been made, 
the eastern boundary was altered somewhat and assumed definite 
lines. This gave Goodhue county its present boundaries, and 
took that county away from the confluence of the Straight and 
Cannon rivers. However, three counties were still left "cornered" 
at the meeting of these streams. 

This would indeed seem to be a discouraging circumstance 
in connection with the establishment cf a county seat in Fari- 
bault, but the pioneers had views of their own. and while many 
would have considered that the obstacles in the way of securing 
a readjustment of county lines were too formidable to be over- 
come, they never abandoned their firm determination to make 
Faribault capital of the county. Thus it stood, with Rice, Dakota, 
and Scott counties cornering at Faribault, until the fall of 1854, 
when, as the territory to the south was rapidly filling up, it be- 
came certain that the next legislature would rearrange the coun- 
ties all through southern Minnesota. While everything was 
being done to make Faribault a business center, the political 
aspect of affairs was carefully scrutinized and it was at once 
determined that it was imperative to have a good strong clear- 
headed man who would be master of the situation as a repre- 
sentative in the legislature from this district, and Alexander 
Faribault, who was always quick to see what should be done, 
and as prompt to act, opened a correspondence with H. H. Sib- 
ley, urging him to be a candidate for the position, and insisting 
that in the fight over the county's boundaries, which was cer- 
tain to be a bitter one and the contest for county seats most 
distressing — to the defeated ones — he was the man to represent 
the interests of this section. Mr. Sibley replied that he would 
admit that his knowledge of the country might be of use to the 
settlers if elected to the position, and intimated that there would 
be opposition to him in the Minnesota vallev, but, if nominated 
in the convention to be held, he could be elected. So the voters 
held a caucus at Mr. Faribault's house and appointed Alexander 
Faribault, N. Paquin, William Dunn, James Wells, Jonathan 
Morris, E. J. Crump, and Walter Morris as delegates to the 
convention soon to be held at Shakopee. Feeling that they 


might not all attend, Luke Hulett wrote a resolution instructing 
the delegates to vote for Mr. Sibley, and authorizing them to 
cast the full vote of the delegation. Mr. Dunn, of Cannon City, 
who with all the others, was in favor of Mr. Sibley, positively 
declined to be instructed, insisting that he and the others knew 
enough to go to the convention and do their duty. James Wells 
also opposed the resolution, and notwithstanding Mr. Hulett 
urged its necessity in case of a contingency, which actually hap- 
pened, and that its passage implied no disrespect to the delega- 
tion, it was voted down. In due time the convention met, two 
of the delegates were not there, and the result of the first ballot 
was a tie between Mr. Sibley and a gentleman up the Minnesota 
river ; so the delegation then asked for the privilege of casting 
the entire vote for Mr. Sibley, but to this objection was success- 
fully made, as they had not been so instructed by their con- 
stituents. But Mr. Wells, who was well up in party methods, 
was equal to the emergency and retrieved his mistake in second- 
ing Mr. Dunn's objection to Mr. Hulett's resolution, by finding a 
man in whose palm a ten dollar gold piece exactly fitted, and the 
next ballot placed Mr. Sibley in nomination. 

General Sibley was duly elected, and succeeded in making 
the county lines conform to the wishes of his Faribault friends. 
In the act defining the boundaries of various counties, including 
Rice, a provision was inserted to the effect that the legal voters 
could at any general election organize any of the counties therein 
defined county, provided that there were at least fifty votes cast 
for county commissioners, and empowering the first county 
board to permanently establish the county seat. With this con- 
dition of things the people of Faribault were content, as the 
place was fast filling up. 

The boundaries of Rice county as given in the act of 1855 
are as follows: "Beginning at the southwest corner of town- 
ship 109 north, range 18 west, running thence west on said 
township line twenty-four miles to the township line between 
ranges 22 and 23; thence north on said township line twenty- 
four miles to the township line between townships 112 and 113 
north; thence east <>n said township lino twelve miles to the 
township line between ranges 20 and 21 ; thence south six miles 
to the township line between townships HI and 112; thence 
east on said township line twelve miles to the township line 
between ranges 18 and 19; thence south eighteen miles to the 
place of beginning." The above remains a description of the 
present boundaries of Rice county, with the exception of an 
addition lo the county of twelve sections in the northern part 
of Bridgewater and Northfield townships, taken from Green- 
vale, Waterford and Sciota townships in Dakota county. 


The boundaries being definitely laid down in 1855 to the 
satisfaction of the people, the next step was the organization. 

This was accomplished by Gov. Willis A. Gorman, early in 
1855. Owing to the fact that the previous historians of this 
county belonged to the party which opposed the organization 
by the governor, very little has been handed down to the pres- 
ent generation in regard to this important period in Rice county 
history. It seems that during the summer of 1854 a town had 
been laid out three miles northeast of the village of Faribault 
by the Messrs. Sears, and given the name of Cannon City. It 
is probable that friends of the Messrs. Sears gained the ear of 
the governor, for after being urged by various citizens of the 
county, probably not residents of Faribault, the governor ap- 
pointed a provisional list of commissioners, and established the 
county seat at Cannon City. 

In the fall of that year, however, the county proceeded to 
organize by an election under the act that had defined its 

There were three voting precincts, one at Faribault, one at 
Cannon City and the other at Morristown. Walter Morris, the 
founder of the latter village, had first located at Faribault, but 
not securing such an interest as he desired, transferred himself 
and his followers to Morristown. He evidently held the balance 
of power between Faribault and Cannon City, and it became 
imperative in the interests of the people at the confluence of the 
Straight and Cannon rivers that a compromise be made with 
him ; this being effected by the preparation of a ticket for county 
officers with the larger part of the candidates from Morristown. 

The election was held in November, 1855, and resulted as 
follows: Register of deeds, Isaac Hammond; sheriff, Charles 
Wood ; judge of probate, Isaac Woodman ; county commissioners, 
F. W. Frink, Andrew Storer and George F. Pettit. Faribault 
was selected as the county seat. 

Up to the time of this election Rice county, though it had 
received a name and been given boundaries, was attached to 
Dakota county for both civil and judicial purposes. 

Alexander Faribault and his associates had family, business 
and social interests in Mendota, in Dakota county, and were 
therefore not inclined to consider this connection with Dakota 
county as other than just and proper. 

But the newer comers were not disposed to yield in any way 
the palm of supremacy to the towns to the north, and were 
jealous of any efforts which tended toward delaying Rice county 
in taking an equal place among the somewhat older counties. 
Therefore when a tax was laid on personal property in Dakota 
county, and an effort was made to collect the tax in Rice 


county, the effort was much resented, although the Dakota 
county officials were acting undei the act which provided that 
assessors should "assess all property therein (that is, in unorgan- 
ized counties) subject to taxation, and return the assessment 
roll by them made to the clerk of the board of county commis- 
sioners of the county to which their counties were attached for 
judicial purposes, and the board was required to levy the tax; 
and the collector of such county (i. e., an unorganized county^ 
was requested to collect the tax and pay the same into the treas- 
ury of such an organized county in the same manner as they 
were required to do 'in such organized counties of which they 
were officers." 

This act clearly provided that the taxation money from Rice 
count}' should be paid into the tieasury of Dakota county, but 
only a few paid it, and the election and organization of Rice 
county came so soon that the neglect or refusal of the others 
did not become a serious problem. 

When the county government wheels were actually set in 
motion steps were taken to secure a copy of such records as had 
pertained to Rice county during its connection with Dakota 
count}'. Deputy Register of Deeds C. C. Perkins was directed 
to go to Mendota, which had been the county seat of Dakota 
county (Kaposia, now South Park, South St. Paul, became the 
county seat in 1854, Mendota in 1854, and Hastings in 1857). 
and copy all records of deeds, mortgages, and miscellaneous rec- 
ords pertaining to Rice county and transport the same to Fari- 
bault. Upon this authority Mr. Perkins went to St. Paul and 
purchased the necessary books, and thence to Mendota, where he 
transcribed the records as directed and returned to Rice county, 
delivering them into the hands of Register of Deeds Isaac Ham- 
mond in the early part of 1855. Since then the records have been 
maintained in Faribault. 

By an act passed by the legislature May 22, 1857, several 
sections were annexed to Rice county in the following words: 
Be it enacted . . . that the southern tier of sections in town- 
ship 112 north, of ranges 19 and 20 west, be, and the same are 
hereby annexed to and shall hereafter constitute a part of the 
county of Rice . . . said portions of counties annexed shall form 
a part of the representative district of the county to which they 
are annexed. . . . 

The state was admitted May 11, 1858. After that date the 
boundaries of the counties could not be changed except by a 
majority vote of the electors of the counties affected. (See Sec. 
1, Art. II, State Constitution.) 

Since 1857 there has been no effort to change the boundaries 
of Rice county. 



Meeting of Appointed Commissioners Held at Cannon City 

First Meeting of Elected Commissioners — Scnool Districts 
Formed — lownship System — Commission System Again — 
Yearly Vvork of the Board — Poor Farm Planned— County 
Court House and Jail Erected — County Officers — County 
Poor Farm. 

So far as can be learned, no records have been preserved of 
the meeting of the county commissioners of Rice county, se- 
lected by Governor Gorman, though such a meeting was held at 
Cannon City. Halsey M. Matteson was chairman of the board. 
Isaac N. Sater was probably a member also, and possibly Luke 
Hulett. In after life, it is said, Mr. Matteson declared that 
although the governor located the county seat temporarily in 
Cannon City and the board met there, the county seat was 
actually moved to Faribault by that board. If this is true, then 
the selection of Faribault as the county seat antedates the 
election of 1855. 

The first elected board of county commissioners of Rice 
county held its first meeting January 7, 1856. in the office of 
Berry & Batchelder, in Faribault. There were present at this 
meeting F. W. Frink, Andrew Storer and George F. Pettit, with 
the register of deeds, Isaac Hammond, acting as clerk. Nothing 
was accomplished except the organization which was effected 
by the election of F. W. Frink, chairman, for the ensuing year, 
and the board, which in those days was dignified by the title of 
•'court," adjourned until the following day, January 8, 1855. 
The court convened as per adjournment, on the morning of the 
eighth, and began disposing of such business as should come 
before it. The first business to be laid before the court was the 
organization of school district No. 1, the first organized in the 
county. The board declared that it should consist of sections 
19, 30 and 31, in township 110, range 20, and sections 24, 25, 36, 
and the east half of section 35, in township 110, range 21. This 
embraces most of the incorporated limits of the city of Fari- 
bault. They also granted a petition for school district No. 2, 
to embrace territory in township 111, ranges 19 and 20. School 
districts Nos. 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10 were formed at this meet- 



ing, and their territory placed upon record, and much of the 
time was consumed by road petitions. The first road business 
entered upon record was in the form of a petition, and is as 
follows : "A petition for a road by Luke Hulett, and twenty- 
two others, beginning at the quarter post on the north line of 
the town of Faribault, running thence due north to the center 
of section 19, township 110, range 20; thence in a direct line, 
as near as may be, toward St. Paul until it shall intersect the 
Dodd road; and Charles Wood, Levi Nutting and A. H. Bulbs 
are hereby appointed examiners to view said road and report 
to the board of commissioners at their next regular session." 
Numerous roads were established by the board. July 8, 1856. 
the board, in summing up the assessment rolls from the three 
assessors' districts in the county, found the aggregate assessed 
valuation $613,364.95. 

Of the historic first meeting of the board F. W. Frink has 
said: "Among those present at this meeting were Luke Hulett. 
Norbert Paquin, John B. Davis, Dr. Charles Jewett, Michael 
Cook, and Levi Nutting. The office was in front with a bedroom 
in the rear. For nearly a year that office was at our disposal 
for county business, while the office of the register of deeds was 
first opened in Crump's hall, lower story. Isaac Woodman 
judged cases at his farm house in the town of Walcott, while I 
carried the office of clerk of the court, as deputy for H. M. Mat- 
teson, in my trousers' pocket. Matteson was the first clerk of 
the court elected, E. J. Crump having held the office by appoint- 
ment." May 13, 1856, George F. Pettit resigned as county com- 
missioner and his place was taken by Levi Nutting. February 
9, 1856, County Order No. 1 was drawn to the amount of $25 
to H. M. Matteson, county treasurer, to purchase books and 
stationery for the district clerk's office. 

The board met as required by law. January 5, 1857, tin- 
members comprising the body being Levi Nutting. Franklin 
Kelley and Andrew Storer. The board organized by electing 
Levi Nutting as chairman for the ensuing year, and then engaged 
in routine business. At the session of the court on February 
17, reports were received from the various school districts in 
the county, showing the number of scholars in attendance in 
each district. The several reports arc given below, the number 
of the district, the name of the clerk and the number of scholars 
in each being recorded : 

One, R. Thayer. 268; 2. Daniel Bowe, 34; 3, D. B. Turner, 44; 
4. II. M. Matteson, 36; 6, T. II. Willis, 41; 8, James Anderson, 
30; 11. T. B. Van Eaton. 30; 12, Ezra Carter, 41; 13, E. S. 
Drake. 44; 14. William Curbeck. 74; 16, Nathan Colestock, 22: 
total number of scholars in the county, 664. The board then 


ordered that the sum of $2 be appropriated from the county 
funds for each scholar, and apportioned to the various school 
district for school purposes. The list of districts was then made 
out, showing the amount due each district, as follows: 1, $536; 
2, $68 ; 3, $88 ; 4, $72 ; 6, $82 ; 8, $60 ; 11, $60; 12, $82 ; 13, $88 ; 14, 
S148; 16, $44; total, $1,328. The board then took into consid- 
eration assessor's reports from the different districts, and found 
the total assessed valuation $2,107,770. District No. 1 reporting 
$722,865; district No. 2, $1,143,353; and district No. 3, $241,552. 
The total amount of tax raised for territorial, county and school 
purposes, in 1857, was $15,810.42. 

During the year 1858, in which the territory of Minnesota 
was admitted as a state, little of special interest or note was 
accomplished by the board. It met on January 5 and organized 
by electing Levi Nutting, chairman, the other members being 
Franklin Kelley and Andrew Storer. Charles Wheeler, the 
sheriff elect, presented his official bond and it was approved. 
John Hoover presented his bond as assessor, and other county 
officers presented bonds, which were duly approved. 

Reports were received from the various schools in the county, 
and it was found that in the thirty schools reported there was 
an attendance of 1,489 scholars. The apportioned school fund 
of this year was 65 cents for every scholar entered upon the 
rolls. A new book in which to record the proceedings of the 
county commissioners was purchased. 

The division of the county into townships is treated elsewhere 
in this volume. 


In 1858, with the admission of the state into the union, began 
an era which in Minnesota continued but a short time, that of 
county government by a board of supervisors consisting of the 
chairmen of the various townships, which in the meantime 
had been created with practically their present names and 
almost their present boundaries. September 14, the first 
meeting of this board was held in the city of Faribault, and was 
called to order by J. A. Starks. The roll was called and the 
following gentlemen, representing the townships following their 
names, answered : G. L. Carpenter, Webster ; L. Barlow, Rich- 
land ; W. A. Pye, Wheeling; Daniel Bowe. Northfield; Isaac 
Woodman, Walcott ; J. A. Starks, Cannon City; B. Lockerbv. 
Bridgewater ; Miles Hollister. Sargent; Thomas Kirk, Wells: 
E. F. Taylor, Forest; Isaac Hammond, Morristown ; J. Hagerty, 
Shieldsville; John Conniff. Erin; G. W. Batchelder, Faribault. 
They then proceeded to elect a chairman and the result was one 
vote for Isaac Woodman and eight for J. A. Starks, the latter 


being therefore declared elected, and was escorted to the chair. 
John C. Gilmore was appointed clerk of the board and was 
required to give bonds to the amount of $500. The board then 
proceeded to business by appointing eight or nine committees 
to attend to the various matters that should come before it. 
September 15, the committee appointed to consider a petition 
for assistance in building a bridge at Dundas reported that it 
did not consider the county finances in such a shape as to war- 
rant assistance in the building of bridges. The petition was 
therefore tabled. At the same meeting a note was presented by 
Xicholls & Buckley, which had been given by the board, but 
could not be paid. The interest for the same was at a rate of 
2^4 per cent a month. An apportionment fund of 95 cents per 
scholar was made from the county fund in favor of the school 
districts. Licenses were registered, regulated at $50 for liquors 
and $25 for beers. September 27, the board appropriated $100 
for the upper and $100 for the lower bridge at Faribault over 
Straight river. During the session G. C. Albee took his seat as 
successor to G. F. Pettit, the second supervisor of Faribault. 
Peter O'Brien also appeared from Wheatland. 

In 1857 the same board still held office. January 8, reports 
were received from thirty-seven of the school districts, and 
showed an attendance of 1,939 scholars. At a session of the 
board, February 17, the first coroner of the county was appointed, 
in the person of J. B. Wheeler. He afterward resigned and E. 
J. Crump was appointed in his stead. February 17, it was de- 
clared by a resolution that all county orders issued by the former 
board of county commissioners were void and repudiated, and 
forbade the county treasurer paying any of the same. This reso- 
lution, however, after investigation of the matter, was rescinded, 
and the former chairman of the board, Levi Nutting, was re- 
quested to deliver up all notes and matters pertaining thereto 
into the hands of the board. 

At the annual election in the fall of 1859 a new board was 
elected, and the newly elected commissioners took their places 
and the oath of office at a meeting held September 13, the fol- 
lowing being present : A. Anderson, J. D. Hoskins, Isaac Wood- 
man, L. Hulett, J. H. Winter, I. N. Sater, Benjamin Lockerby, 
E. Roberds, J. H. Bartlett, James McCabe, R. M. Norton, and 
Henry Conary. Later came G. W. Frink, L. Barlow, Joseph 
Hagarty and L. Y. Hatch. N. Paquin contested Luke Hulett's 
seat, but was unsuccessful. It would appear from the minutes 
that while the other townships were represented on the board by 
their chairman, Faribault was represented by its chairman and 
one other supervisor. 

Reports to the board of supervisors from forty of the fifty- 


four school districts in the county showed a total of 2,046 scholars 
in attendance. January 7, 1860, the last meeting of the board 
was held and adjourned sine die, as a change had been made in 
the governmental principles and the commissioner system was 
again inaugurated. 


In January, 1860, Rice county was divided into five commis- 
sioner districts, each being entitled to one representative on the 
county board. District No. 1 comprised the towns of Richland, 
Wheeling and Cannon City ; district No. 2, Northfield and 
Bridgewater; district No. 3, Faribault; district No. 4, Walcott, 
Sargent, Morristown and Wells ; district No. 5, Shieldsville, Erin, 
Wheatland, Webster and Forest. 

The newly elected board met May 15, 1860, the following 
gentlemen representing the various districts : J. H. Parker, G. H. 
Batchelder, S. Webster and William Thorp. They organized by 
electing J. H. Parker chairman for the ensuing year. The board 
then appointed G. F. Batchelder county auditor to serve until 
the next election, fixing his bond at $5,000. It also decided that 
his salary should be $400 per annum. Nothing more of impor- 
tance came before the board and the balance of the time was 
spent among the road and school districts, together with other 
routine business. 

In 1861 the board met January 5, with the following members 
in attendance: G. H. Batchelder, William Dunn, W. M. Thorp, 
G. Woodruff, James McCabe and John Conniff. G. H. Batchel- 
der was elected chairman for the year and the board proceeded 
to business. They next raised the salary of the county auditor 
from $400 to $600 per year. 

At a session on January 15, from reports sent in to the board 
from the clerks of school districts it was found that there were 
2,287 scholars in Rice county entitled to apportionment. The 
total apportionment fund for this year was $3,458.46. 

In 1862, the board consisted of the same gentlemen as did the 
last, except J. B. Wheeler, who was elected chairman. They 
fixed the salary of the county auditor at $600 for the ensuing 
year, and that of the county attorney at $400 per annum. The 
balance of the year was spent in routine business. 

At the beginning of the next year, 1863, the board met Jan- 
uary 6, and the records state that the full board was present, 
but as to the personnel of the body the records do not give 
any information. The commissioners passed a resolution raising 
the auditor's salary from $600 to $800 per year. A considerable 
portion of the commissioners' time in this year was devoted to 
issues arising from the war, and making appropriations for filling 


the quota. An account of their proceedings with regard to this 
will he found in the military history published elsewhere. 

In 1864 the county commissioners met January 5 for organi- 
zation, and the record of the meeting says Messrs. Jackson, 
Adams, Wheaton and Wilson were in attendance. The board 
organized by electing H. Wilson chairman. A special meeting 
was held April 16 for the purpose of taking into consideration 
the propriety of appointing a county superintendent of schools, 
under authority of an act of the legislature to provide for a gen- 
eral system of schools. After consideration they appointed 
Thomas S. Buckham and fixed his salary at $500 a year. 

Nothing of particular importance transpired the following 
year, 1865, the time being consumed by routine business. The 
commissioners met in the early part of January, substantially 
the same board being present. They organized by electing 
Hudson Wilson to the chair. January 5 the board raised the 
salary of the county attorney from $450 to $500. On September 
6 $400 was appropriated to take care of the county poor, that 
amount having been deficient in the former year's report. The 
board closed the year's labors by allowing bills of commissioners 
for service, mileage, etc. 

In 1866 the newly elected board met January 2. and was com- 
posed of the following gentlemen: Joseph llaejerty, C. A. 
Wheaton, Hudson Wilson, C. D. Adams and John Close. The 
board organized by electing Hudson Wilson chairman. At the 
January session the matter of a county poor farm was before the 
board, and the following is entered upon the records: "The 
board having in discussion the propriety of procuring a farm in 
support of the county poor, and as the demands upon the county 
treasury will not leave sufficient funds to purchase such a farm, 
in case we should deem it advisable to provide for the poor in 
that way at a subsequent session. The county attorney was re- 
quested to prepare a bill to presenl to the legislature at this ses- 
sion, authorizing the board of Rice county to issue bonds in their 
discretion to an amount not exceeding $15,000, for the purchase 
of a county poor farm and the erection of the necessary buildings 
thereon." The county superintendent of schools, Thomas S. 
Buckham, resigned his position as such, and the board appointed 
Myron Wheaton to till the place. At the same meeting the salary 
of the auditor was increased to Sl.SiKl per year. At a later session 
of the commissioners, in September. 1866, the board issued bonds, 
under authority of an act approved by the legislature March 1. 
ISoo. entitled "An act to authorize the county commissioners 
of Rice count) to issue bond- to provide for the purchase of a 
county poor farm." Forty-three bonds, or denominations vary- 


ing from $50 to $500, were issued, payable within eight years, 
with interest at ten per cent. 

In January, 1867, the board met upon the 2d of the month, 
and consisted of the following members : Hudson Wilson, C. S. 
Hulbert, C. D. Adams, John Close and Joseph Hagerty. The 
organization was effected by the election of H. Wilson, chair- 
man. They then increased the salary of the auditor to $2,000. 
At the September session the following resolution was passed by 
the board : "Resolved, That three members of this board be a 
committee to purchase, and are hereby instructed to negotiate 
for and purchase lots 1, 2 and 3, of block 43, town of Faribault, 
for Rice county, as an addition for the site for county buildings. 
The committee to consist of Hudson Wilson, John Close, C. S. 
Hulbert, and the county auditor." The said committee were also 
authorized to draw orders on the county treasury in payment 
for the same. 

At the next session of the board it was "Resolved, That the 
chairman be instructed to present to the next legislature a bill 
authorizing the commissioners of Rice county to issue bonds to 
an amount not exceeding $50,000 for the erection of county 

In 1868 the board met as usual, in the early part of January, 
and organized by electing Hudson Wilson chairman. The mem- 
bers present were: Hudson Wilson, John Close, C. S. Hulbert 
and Richard Browne. This year was spent entirely with routine 
business, attending to school districts, tax abatements and allow- 
ing bills. 

The year 1869 was spent by the commissioners in much the 
same manner as the previous year. The board met January 5 
and organized by electing Hudson Wilson chairman. The mem- 
bers present were: P. Filbert, Hudson Wilson. R. Rrowne and 
Dr. Coe. 

The board elected for 1870 met on January 4 and organized 
by electing Hudson Wilson chairman, the members being E. 
Lathrop, R. Browne, P. Filbert and Dr. S. B. Coe. Nothing of 
importance transpired this year. 

The members elected for 1871, as a board of county commis- 
sioners, were as follows: First commissioner's district, Peter 
Filbert: second district, E. Lathrop; third district. H. Wilson; 
fourth district, C. D. Adams; fifth district, Richard Browne. The 
seat of Peter Filbert was afterward declared vacant by the board 
on the ground that he was not a resident of the district at the 
time of election, and O. Osmandson was made his successor. 

At a meeting of the board January 2, 1872, Hudson Wilson 
was re-elected chairman, the members for the vear being J. C. 
Closson, E. Lathrop, C. D. Adams and Richard Browne. At this 


session the salary of the county attorney was fixed at $700 per 
year. It was also decided that all the county buildings should be 

The following year. 1873, the board met on January 7, com- 
posed of the same gentlemen as was in the last board, with the 
exception thai Hudson Wilson was dropped out and T. B. 
(lenient appeared in his place, and the board was organized by 
electing the latter gentleman chairman. They then spent some 
time in burning redeemed county orders. The next matter taken 
into consideration by the board was the erection of a court housi 
and jail, and a hill was drawn up for presentation to the next 
legislature, to authorize the county commissioners to issue bonds 
for the erection of those buildings, not exceeding $50,000 in 
amount, and the same to be submitted to a vote of the people. 
This was the same, in substance, as the resolution passed in 1867. 
The salary of the county superintendent of schools was fixed at 
$1,000 per year. 

At a session of the board in May the building committee was 
authorized to purchase lots six and seven in block forty-four, of 
Patrick McGreevy, at a cost not to exceed $5,000, also to 
advertise for bids on the court house. In July, the contract 
of completing the stone work on the basement of the court 
house was let to Pfieffer & Co., for the sum of $9,615. The bid 
of Babcock & Woodruff was accepted. They agreed to do car- 
penter work in the basement, also to furnish everything and com- 
plete the building from the water tables up, according to certain 
plans and specifications, for the sum of $26,515. At the session 
of the board in August of this year it was resolved as follows: 
"That the board of county commissioners of Rice county 
acknowledge themselves and the citizens of Rice county under 
great and lasting obligations to the Hon. Henry M. Rice, of St. 
Paul, from whom our county takes its name, for a large and 
valuable collection of books and documents, consisting of up- 
wards of 200 volumes, recently presented by that gentleman, the 
same being the first contribution to our county library." 

At the August session of the board the building committee 
reported that it had let tin- contract for building the jail onto the 
McGreevy house, according to plans and specifications made by 
C. N. Daniels, architect to Messrs. Sibbald, Hatch. Johnson and 
McCall, to be completed by October 1, 1873. A contract was 
also made with Henry Peltier for brick at $8.25 per thousand. 
Bradey & Greenslade contracted to furnish the iron work on 
the jail for $2,300. July 1. 1873, the county commissioners 
issued fifty bunds of the denomination of $1,000 each, and pay- 
able from ten to twenty years from date, with interest at 9 per 
cent, in payment of the county buildings. 


In 1874 the commissioners met January 6, with the following 
in attendance: T. B. Clement, H. H. White, J. G. Scott, J. F. 
Healey and J. C. Closson. The board organized by electing T. B. 
Clement chairman. At a session in March $400 was voted to 
improve the buildings on the county poor farm. Considerable 
time was spent in discussing county buildings. 

The board elected in 1875 consisted of T. C. Adams, H. H. 
White, T. B. Clement, J. F. Healey and J. G. Scott. At the first 
meeting, January 5, T. B. Clement was elected chairman. Messrs. 
Scott and Adams were appointed by the commissioners as a com- 
mittee to borrow for the county the sum of $5,000, payable in 
one year. 

In 1876 the commissioners were L. W. Denison, J. G. Scott, 
T. C. Adams, H. H. White and M. Hanley. The board held its 
first meeting January 4 and organized by electing L. W. Denison 
as chairman. 

In 1877 the board consisted of A. P. Morris, Charles Sweetzer, 
T. C. Adams, M. Hanley and L. W. Denison. They met for 
organization January 2 and selected L. W. Denison for chairman. 
The board spent considerable time this year in discussing and 
attending to bills from pursuers of the Northfield bank robbers. 
In 1878 the board met January 2 and was attended by Chris- 
tian Deike, A. P. Morris, L. W. Denison, Charles Sweetzer and 
M. Hanley. The chairman was L. W. Denison. At a subsequent 
meeting the board authorized the chairman to provide a suitable 
bookcase for the library presented by the Hon H. M. Rice. 

In 1879 the county commissioners were D. Cavanaugh, A. 1'. 
Morris, M. Hanley, Charles Sweetzer and C. Deike. D. Cav- 
anaugh was elected chairman. In July a petition was received 
for aid in building a bridge across Straight river, between Rice 
and Steele counties. A committee was appointed to meet the 
commissioners of Steele county and pursuade them to bear a 
share of the expense. 

In 1880 the commissioners were D. Cavanaugh, chairman; 
John S. Way, Charles Sweetzer, M. Hanley and C. Deike. 

In 1881 the commissioners were the same as the previous year. 
In 1882 the commissioners were Charles Sweetzer, chairman ; 
T. O'Grady, E. J. Healy, C. Deike and John S. Way. 

In 1883 the commissioners were J. W. Huckins. T. B. Buck, 
E. J. Healey, T. O'Grady, C. Dieke. 

1884 — Auditor, S. L. Crocker ; treasurer, E. J. Healy ; regis- 
ter, M. H. Cole; sheriff, Ara Barton; judge of probate, John 
Mullin ; surveyor. George M. Andrews ; coroner, George M. 
Coon; attorney, A. D. Keyes ; superintendent of schools, S. B. 
Wilson; county commissioners, E. F. Oliver, J". W. Huckins. 
E. J. Healey, J. B. Buck. 


1885 — Auditor, L. S. Crocker; treasurer, E. J. Healy ; regis- 
ter, M. II. Cole; sheriff, Ara Barton; judge of probate, John 
Mullin; surveyor, George M. Andrews; coroner, George M. 
Coon; attorney, A. D. Keyes; superintendent of schools, S. B. 
Wilson; clerk of court, Charles T. Palmer; county commission- 
ers, E. F. Oliver, J. W. Huckins. H. P. Sime, J. B. Buck, T. 

1887 — Auditor, T. N. Donaldson; treasurer, E. J. Healy; 
sheriff, Oscar Lockerby ; register, James Hunter; attorney, H. M. 
Keeley ; county surveyor, Sterne Faribault; judge of probate, 
John Mullin ; court commissioner, C. W. Pye ; coroner, F. M. 
Rose; superintendent of schools, S. B. Wilson; county commis- 
sioners, T. C. Adams, David Ames, A. W. Stockton, T. B. 
Owings, F. Benjamin, Jr. 

1889 — Auditor, I. N. Donaldson ; treasurer, John Grant ; 
sheriff, C. X. Stewart; register of deeds, James Hunter; judge 
of probate, R. A. Mott; count) - attorney, A. L. Keyes; county 
surveyor, S. A. Faribault; coroner. G. M. Coon; clerk of court, 
C. O. Kleven; superintendent of schools, S. B. Wilson; county 
commissioner, John S. Petteys, David Ames, A. W. Stockton, 
T. B. Owings, F. Benjamin, Jr. 

1891 — Auditor, I. N. Donaldson; sheriff, C. N. Stewart; attor- 
ney, Thomas II. Quinn; judge of probate, R. A. Mott; coroner, 
G. M. Coon; superintendent of schools, S. B. Wilson; register 
of deeds, James Hunter; county commissioners, T. C. Adams, 
David Ames, A. W. Stockton, II. II. Osterhout, F. Benjamin. 

1893 — Auditor, I. N. Donaldson; treasurer, F. Laufenburger ; 
register, James Hunter; sheriff, C. N. Stewart; judge of probate, 
R. A. Mott; attorney, Robert Alee; surveyor, \Y. S. Gloyd ; cor- 
oner, J. S. Seelev. M. D. ; clerk of court, C. O. Kleven; court 
commissioner, C. W. Pye; superintendent of schools, B. M. 
Reynolds; county commissioners, A. W. Stockton (chairman), 
C. Deike, David Ames, H. H. Osterhout, F. Benjamin. 

IS')? — Auditor, I. X. Donaldson; treasurer. F. Laufenburger; 
sheriff, Charles X. Stewart; register of deeds, James Hunter; 
judge of probate. R. A. Mott; surveyor, Richard Kei-rick ; cor- 
oner, J. S. Seeley, M. D.; clerk of court, C. O. Kleven: superin- 
tendent of schools, B. M. Reynolds; county commissioners, P, 
Ilcffernan, S. J. Leahy. F. J, Rachac, C. Deike, A. W. Stockton. 
1897 — Auditor, I. X. Donaldson; treasurer, F. Laufenburger > 
register, George L. Smith; sheriff, George W. Moshier; county 
attorney, Anson L. Keyes; judge of probate, R. A. Mott; sur- 
veyi ir, C. A. Reed ; coroner, J. S. Seelev ; clerk < >f court. George D. 
Reed; court commissioner, C W Pye; superintendent of schools. 
B, M. Reynolds; county commissioners, Alfred Pentz, P, Heffer- 
nan, II. F. Kester, S. J. Leahy, F. 1. Rachac. 


1899 — Auditor, E. J. Healy; treasurer, Fred Shandorf; regis- 
ter, George L. Smith ; sheriff, George W. Moshier; attorney, John 
W. LeCrone; judge of probate, James Hunter; surveyor, C. A. 
Reed; coroner, J. S. Seeley; clerk of court, George D. Reed; 
court commissioner, C. W. Pye ; superintendent of schools, G. R. 
Simpson ; county commissioners, Alfred Pentz, E. B. Law, H. F. 
Kester, S. J. Leahy and F. J. Rachac. 

1901 — Auditor, W. K. Adams ; treasurer, Fred Shandorf ; reg- 
ister of deeds, George S. Whitney; sheriff, George W. Moshier; 
attorney, William W. Pye ; judge of probate, James Hunter ; 
surveyor, C. A. Reed ; coroner, J. S. Seeley ; clerk of court, George 
D. Reed ; superintendent of schools, E. L. Peterson ; county com- 
missioners, F. J. Orcutt, E, B. Law, H. Pierce, Jr., S. J. Leahy 
and W. T. Shimota. 

1903 — Auditor, W. K. Adams ; treasurer, S. I. Pettitt ; register 
of deeds, Robert R. Hutchinson; sheriff, George W. Moshier; 
attorney, William W. Pye; judge of probate, James Hunter; 
surveyor, C. A. Reed; coroner, David W. Ray; clerk of court, 
George D. Reed ; county commissioners, F. J. Orcutt, William 
Ebel, Henry Pierce, Jr., Thomas Manley and W. T. Shimota. 

1905 — Auditor, J. J. Rachac; treasurer, S. I. Pettitt; register 
of deeds, Robert R. Hutchinson; sheriff, William Geiger; attor- 
ney, E. H. Gipson ; judges of probate, George L. Smith ; surveyor, 
C. A. Reed ; coroner, D. W. Ray ; clerk of court, Charles F. Ebel ; 
superintendent of schools, Elmer L. Peterson ; county commis- 
sioners, H. H. Helberg, William Ebel, P. F. Ruge, Thomas Man- 
ley and Henry Sprain. 

1907 — Auditor, J. J. Rachac; treasurer, S. I. Pettitt; register 
of deeds, R. R. Hutchinson; sheriff, William Geiger; attorney, 
A. B. Childress ; judge of probate, George L. Smith ; surveyor, 
C. A. Reed; coroner, D. W. Ray; clerk of court, Charles F. Ebel; 
court commissioners, K. S. Chase; superintendent of schools, 
J. H. Lewis ; county commissioners, H. H. Helberg, William 
Ebel, P. F. Ruge, John Finley, Jr., and Henry Sprain. 

1909 — Auditor, James W. Trenda; treasurer, S. I. Pettitt; 
register of deeds, E. F. Kelly; sheriff, William Geiger; attorney, 
A. B. Childress; judge of probate, James Hunter; surveyor, C. A. 
Reed ; coroner, A. H. Bollenbach ; clerk of court, Charles Ebel ; 
superintendent of schools, J. H. Lewis ; county commissioners, 
H. H. Helberg, William Ebel, P. F. Ruge, John Finley, Jr., and 
Frank J. Parkos. 


The Rice County poor farm was purchased from Summer A. 
Sheffield, September 5, 1866, for $5,000, and is located in the 


southeast quarter of section 2 in Warsaw. The present brick 
building was erected in 1903 and completed July 15. Minor 
improvements have been made since. The farm is in a high 
degree of cultivation, and has always been well managed. The 
grounds are well tended and much credit for the efficiency and 
beauty of the place is due Frank Sweet, the farm being one of 
the finest places in Jewett valley. 



Council Districts — Territorial Legislatures — Rice County in the 
Seventh and Sixth Council Districts Successively — Consti- 
tutional Convention — Rice County Becomes a Part of the 
Fifth Legislative District of the New State — Rice County 
Constituted the Eighth District — Becomes the Eighteenth 
District — Becomes the Twentieth District — Assumes Its 
Present Designation of Twenty-eighth District in 1897 — 
Representatives in Congress. 

On July 7, 1849, Governor Alexander Ramsey, by procla- 
mation, fixed the council districts of the territory, which at that 
time had not been divided into counties. The settlement at the 
meeting of the Straight and Cannon rivers was included in the 
seventh district. 

The first territorial legislature assembled in 1849. The sev- 
enth district was represented in the council by Martin McLeod. 
and in the house by Alexis Bailly and Gideon H. Pond. The ses- 
sion adjourned November 1. 

The second territorial legislature assembled January 1 and 
adjourned March 31, 1851. The seventh district was represented 
in the council by Martin McLeod and in the house by B. II. 
Randall and Alexander Faribault. 

The territory having been divided into counties, it was appor- 
tioned by the second territorial legislature into council districts. 
Rice county, which was then included in Dakota county, was in 
the sixth district. 

The third territorial legislature assembled January 7, and 
adjourned March 6, 1852. The sixth district was represented in 
the council by Martin McLeod and in the house by Janie^ 
McBoal and Benjamin H. Randall. 

The fourth territorial legislature assembled January 5, and 
adjourned March 5, 1853. Martin McLeod, of Lac qui Parle, 
who represented the sixth district in the council, was president of 
that body. In the house, the sixth district was represented by 
A. E. Ames and B. H. Randall. 

The fifth territorial legislature assembled January 4 and ad- 
journed March 4, 1854. Joseph R. Brown represented the sixth 



district in the council and Hezekiah Fletcher and William H. 
Nobles in the house. 

The sixth territorial legislature assembled January 3 and ad- 
journed March 3, 1855. Joseph R. Brown represented the sixth 
district in the council and H. H. Sibley and D. M. Hanson in the 

By the apportionment of 1855, Rice, Scott and Dakota coun- 
ties were constituted the sixth district. 

The seventh territorial legislature assembled January 2 and 
adjourned March 1, 1856. The sixth district was represented 
in the council by H. G. Bailly and Samuel Dooley, and in the 
house by M. T. Murphy, O. C. Gibbs, John C. Ide, J. T. Gal- 
braith and John M. Holland. 

The eighth territorial legislature assembled January 7 and 
adjourned March 7, 1857. The sixth district was represented by 
Samuel Dooley and H. G. Bailly in the council and C. P. Adams, 
J. J. McVey, L. M. Brown. F. J. Witlock and Morgan L. Noble 
in the house. An extra session assembled April 27 and adjourned 
May 23. At this extra session Charles Jewett took the place of 
Morgan L. Noble, who resigned. 

Under the enabling act of congress, approved March 3, 1857, 
a constitutional convention of 108 members (each council dis- 
trict to elect two delegates for each councilman and representa- 
tive it was entitled to) was authorized to meet at the capitol on 
the second Monday in July, to frame a state constitution, and 
to submit it to the people of the territory. The election was held 
on the first Monday in June. July 13 the delegates met, but a 
disagreement arising in the organization, the Republican mem- 
bers organized one body and the Democrats organized separatelv. 
Each of these bodies claiming to be the legal constitutional con- 
vention, proceeded with the work of forming an instrument to be 
submitted to the people. After some days an understanding was 
effected between them, and by means of a committee of confer- 
ence the same constitution was framed and adopted by both 
bodies. On being submitted to the people, October 13. it was 
ratified. The sixth district, which included Rice county, was 
represented in the Republican wing by John \Y. North, Thomas 
Bolles, Oscar F. Perkins, Thomas Foster, Thomas J. Galbraith 
and D. D. Dickinson. The district was represented in the Demo- 
cratic wing by II. II. Sibley. Robert Kennedy, Daniel J. Burns, 
Frank Warner, William A. Davis, Joseph Burwell, Henry G. 
Bailly and Andrew Keegan. 

1857-58 — The first legislature. By the apportionment as laid 
down in the constitution. Rice county was constituted the fifth 
district. The legislature assembled December 2, 1857, and on 
March 25, 1858. took a recess until June 2 and adjourned Augusl 


12. The Rice county representatives were : Michael Cook, George 

E. Skinner in the senate ; John L. Schofield, John H. Parker and 
Warren Vertress in the house. 

1859-60 — The second legislature assembled December 7, and 
adjourned March 12, 1860. Rice county representatives were : 
M. Cook and D. H. Frost in the senate; E. N. Leavens, Luke 
Hulett and Ferris Webster in the house. 

1861 — The third legislature. By the apportionment of 1860 
Rice county was constituted the eighth district. The legislature 
assembled January 8, and adjourned March 8. Rice county rep- 
resentatives were : Michael Cook in the senate ; J. D. Hoskins 
and Charles Wood in the house. 

1862 — The fourth legislature assembled January 7, and ad- 
journed March 7. Rice county representatives were : Michael 
Cook in the senate ; George H. Woodruff and Caleb Clossen in the 
house. On account of the Indian outbreak in 1862, an extra ses- 
sion was called by the governor, which assembled September 9, 
and adjourned September 29. 

1863 — The fifth legislature assembled January 6, and ad- 
journed March 6. Rice county representatives were : John M. 
Berry in the senate ; Charles Wood and Charles Taylor in the 

1864 — The sixth legislature assembled January 5, and ad- 
journed March 4. Rice county representatives were : John M. 
Berry in the senate; A. N. Nourse and A. H. Bullis in the house. 

1865 — The seventh legislature assembled January 3, and ad- 
journed March 3. Rice county representatives were : Levi 
Nutting in the senate ; A. H. Bullis and Charles Taylor in the 

1866 — The eighth legislature assembled January 2, and ad- 
journed March 2. Rice county representatives were : Gordon E. 
Cole in the senate ; J. S. Archibald and Isaac Pope in the house. 

1867 — The ninth legislature. By the apportionment of 1866, 
Rice county was constituted the eighth district. The legislature 
assembled January 8, and adjourned March 8. Rice county repre- 
sentatives were: O. F. Perkins in the senate; Charles A. 
Wheaton and Isaac Pope in the house. 

1868 — The tenth legislature assembled January 7, and ad- 
journed March 6. Rice county representatives were: O. F. 
Perkins in the senate; Christian Erd and Jesse Ames in the house. 

1869— The eleventh legislature assembled January 5, and ad- 
journed March 5. Rice county representatives were : George 

F. Batchelder in the senate; W. J. Sibbison and E. Hollister in 
the house. 

1870 — The twelfth legislature assembled January 4, and ad- 
journed March 4. Rice county representatives were: George F. 


Batchelder in the senate; Henry Drought and William Close in 
the house. 

1871 — The thirteenth legislature assembled January 8, and 
adjourned March 3. Rice county representatives were : John 
H. Case in the senate; Ara Barton and Henry Piatt in the house. 
1872 — The fourteenth legislature. By the apportionment of 
1871, Rice county was constituted the eighteenth district. The 
legislature assembled January 2, and adjourned March 1. Rice 
county representatives were: G. W. Batchelder in the senate; 
O. Osmundson, Ara Barton, John Hutchinson. Henry Piatt and 
H. M. Mattson in the house. 

1873 — The fifteenth legislature assembled January 7, and ad- 
journed March 7. Rice county representatives were: G. W. 
Batchelder in the senate; Osmund Osmundson, Elias Hobbs, 
S. C. Dunham. J. B. Hopkins and Andrew Thompson in tin 

1874 — The sixteenth legislature assembled January 6, and 
adjourned March 6. Rice county representatives were: Thomas 
H. Buckham in the senate ; B. M. James, H. E. Barron, J. H. 
Passon, H. B. Martin and L. M. Heally in the house. 

1875 — The seventeenth legislature assembled January 5, and 
adjourned March 5. Rice county representatives were: Thomas 
S. Buckham in the senate; T. B. Clement, J. B. Hopkins, J. S. 
Allen, Andrew Thompson and H. B. Martin in the house. 

1876— The eighteenth legislature assembled January 4, and 
adjourned March 3. Rice county representatives were: J. M. 
Archibald in the senate ; Joseph Covert, F. A. Noble, C. H. Grant. 
( ;. W. Walrath and P. Plaisance in the house. 

1877 — The nineteenth legislature assembled January 2, and 
adjourned March 2. Rice county representatives were: J. M. 
Archibald in the senate; J. It. Pettys, H. Scriver, A. W. Mc- 
Kinstry, S. B. Coe and E. C. Knowles in the house. 

1878 — The twentieth legislature assembled January 8, and 
adjourned March 8. Rice county representatives were: T. B. 
Clement in the senate: J. W. Thompson, John Thompson, Stiles 
M. West, L. W. Dennison and J. S. Haselton in the house. 

1879 — Tin' twenty-first legislature assembled* January 7, and 
adjourned March 7. Rice county representatives were: T. B. 
Clement in the senate; Setli II. Kenny. Hiram Scriver, L. W. 
Dennison, A. Thompson and Joseph Covert in the house. 

1881 — The twenty-second legislature assembled January 4. 
and adjourned March 4. Rice county representatives were: T. 1'.. 
Clement in the senate: John Thompson, S. P. Stewart, R. A 
Molt, W. R. Baldwin and Philip Plaisance in the ho.use. An extra 
session was called for the purpose of considering the legislation 
.it the regular session relating to the state railroad bonds which 


was declared unconstitutional by the supreme court. The session 
commenced October 11 and closed November 13. 

1883 — The twenty-third legislature. By the apportionment of 
1881, Rice county was constituted the twentieth district. The 
legislature assembled January 2, and adjourned March 2. Rice 
county representatives were: T. B. Clement in the senate; Gor- 
don E. Cole, A. Mortenson, J. S. Way and M. S. Seymour in the 

1885 — The twenty-fourth legislature assembled January 6, and 
adjourned March 6. Rice county representatives were: T. B. 
Clement in the senate; W. S. Pattee, Christian Deike, Charles 
Sweetser and Philip Plaisance in the house. 

1887 — The twenty-fifth legislature assembled January 4, and 
adjourned March 4. The Rice county representatives were: G. 
W. Wood in the senate; A. D. Keyes, H. A. Swartwoudt, J. J. 
Alexander and I. N. Powers in the house. 

1889 — The twenty-sixth legislature assembled January 8, and 
adjourned April 23. The Rice county representatives were : G. 
W. Wood in the senate; J. P. Temple, Hudson Wilson, George 
W. Damp and B. M. Janes in the house. 

1S91 — The Twenty-seventh legislature. By the apportion- 
ment of 1889, Rice county was constituted the twentieth district. 
The legislature assembled January 6, and adjourned April 20. 
Rice county representatives were : A. W. Stockton in the senate ; 
T. E. Bonde, Joseph Roach and R. G. Weatherston in the house. 

1893— The twenty-eighth legislature assembled January 3, and 
adjourned April 18. Rice county representatives were: A. W. 
Stockton in the senate; A. P.. Kelly, Judson C. Temple and Jo- 
seph Roach in the house. 

1895 — The twenty-ninth legislature assembled January 8, and 
adjourned April 23. Rice county representatives were: A. W. 
Stockton in the senate ; George W. Damp, A. B. Kelly and Simon 
Taylor in the house. 

1897 — The thirtieth legislature assembled January 5, and ad 
journed April 21. Rice county representatives were: A. VV. 
Stockton in the senate; D. F. Kelly, L. M. Hollister and Charles 
Eigenbrodt in the house. 

1899 — The thirty-first legislature. By the apportionment of 
1897, Rice county was constituted the twenty-eighth district. The 
legislature assembled January 3, and adjourned April 18. Rice 
county representatives were: A. W. Stockton in the senate; 
A. B. Kelly and P. J. Moran in the house. 

1901 — The thirty-second legislature assembled January 8, and 
adjourned April 12. Rice county representatives were : A. W. 
Stockton in the senate ; A. B. Kelly and Fred Lemke in the house. 
An extra session was called for the purpose of considering the 


report of the tax commission created by Chapter 13, General 
Laws of A. D. 1901. The extra session convened February 4, 
1902, and adjourned March 11, 1902. 

1903 — The thirty-third legislature assembled January 6. Rice 
county representatives were: C. M. Buck in the senate; Fred 
Lemke and D. F. Kelly in the house. 

1905 — The thirty-fourth legislature assembled January 3. Rice 
county representatives were: C. M. Buck in the senate; George 
W. Thompson and A. K. Ware in the house. 

1907 — The thirty-fifth legislature assembled January 8. Rice 
county representatives were: Frank L. Glotzbach in the senate; 
George W. Thompson and E. A. Orne in the house. 

1909 — The thirty-sixth legislature assembled in January, 1909. 
Rice county was represented in the senate by Frank L. Glotzbach. 
and in the house by A. K. Ware and J. R. Phillips. 


The third congressional district, in which, from the time of 
the apportionment of 1881, Rice county has been included, has 
been represented in congress since that date as follows : H. B. 
Strait, Republican, March 4, 1881, to March 4, 1887; John L. 
McDonald, Democrat, March 4, 1887, to March 4. 1889; Darwin 
S. Hall, Republican, March 4. 1889, to March 4, 1891 ; O. M. 
Hall. Democrat, March 4, 1891, to March 4, 1895; Joel P. Heat- 
wole, Republican. March 4, 1895. to March 4, 1903; Charles R. 
Davis, Republican, March 4, 1903, to March 4, 1911. 

Until Minnesota became a state it had only one representa- 
tive in congress, a territorial delegate, who was not allowed to 
vote. The first territorial delegate from Minnesota was Henry 
II. Sibley, who was first sent ostensibly as a delegate from the 
territory of Wisconsin, though living on the present site of 
Mendota at the mouth of the Minnesota river. He sat as a ter- 
ritorial delegate from January 15. 1849, to December 5. 1S55. 
I le was succeeded by I lenry M. Rice, who served until December 
7, 1X57. W. W. Kingsbury was elected to s,, Ct -eed him and 
served until December 6. 1858. As has been noted, the United 
States senate. February 25. 1S57. passed an act authorizing the 
people of Minnesota to form a constitution preparatory to their 
admission to the union. In accordance with the provisions of 
this enabling act, a constitutional convention was held Jul\ 15. 
1857. at the territorial capital. October 15. 1857. an election was 
held, when the constitution was adopted and a full list of state 
officers elected. Three congressmen were also elected at this 
tune George L. Becker, W. W. Phelps and J. M. Cavanaugh — 
but it was afterward found that Minnesota was entitled to onlj 


two congressmen, and the matter was amicably adjusted by the 
withdrawal of Mr. Becker. By this election, the Messrs. Phelps 
and Cavanaugh became the first members of congress from the 
state of Minnesota. 

In the winter of 1857-58, the legislature divided the state into 
congressional districts, the southern part becoming the first con- 
gressional district and the northern part the second, Rice county 
thus becoming a part of the first congressional district. 

By the apportionment of 1872, the state was divided into three 
congressional districts. The second district contained the 
counties of Wabasha, Goodhue, Rice, Dakota, Scott, Le Sueur, 
Nicollet, Brown, Sibley, Carver, McLeod, Renville, Redwood, 
Lyon, Swift, Chippewa and Kandijohi. 

By the apportionment of 1881, the state was divided into five 
congressional districts. The third district contained Goodhue, 
Rice, Dakota, Scott, Carver, McLeod, Meeker, Kandiyohi, Ren- 
ville, Swift and Chippewa. 

By the apportionment of 1891, the state was divided into 
seven congressional districts. The third district contained the 
counties of Carver, Dakota, Goodhue, Le Sueur, McLeod, 
Meeker, Renville, Rice, Scott and Sibley. 

By the apportionment of 1901 the state was divided into nine 
congressional districts. This apportionment has continued to 
the present day. The third district consists of the counties of 
Rice, Scott, Sibley, Nicollet, McLeod, Le Sueur, Goodhue, 
Dakota and Carver. 



Fourteen Townships in Rice County Organized in May, 1858 
—Early Settlement— Early Incidents and First Supervisors 
of Each Township— Wells— Bridgewater— Wheeling— Rich- 
land — Walcott — Forest — Warsaw — Cannon City — Erin 
— Morristown — Northfield — Shieldsville — Wheatland — 

The fourteen townships in Rice county were organized in 
May, 1858, and their governmental history has been uneventful, 
as there have been practically no changes in boundaries or 
names since that date. 

In this chapter the story of the early settlement, anecdotes of 
pioneer days and the organization and first officers of each town- 
ship, are told in concise form. The cities and villages receive 
attention elsewhere. 


Wells township is one of the central townships of Rice 
county and is next to the smallest in size. It contains the full 
congressional township, with the exception of two and one-half 
sections in the southeastern part, that have been annexed to the 
city of Faribault. This leaves the town an area of 22,440 acres, 
of which a considerable portion is covered with water. It is 
bounded on the north by Forest; east by Cannon City township 
and city of Faribault ; south by Warsaw ; and west by Shields- 

It is amply supplied with water by lakes, ponds, rivers and 
brooks, and if any town in Rice county can be said to be noted 
for its beautiful lakes and streams this is the one. French lake 
covers more land than any other, embracing 1.064 acres in sec- 
tions 7, 8, 17 and 18, in the western part of the town, and ex- 
tending a short distance into the town of Shieldsville. Lake 
Che-de-weta. formerly Roberds lake, is the next in size— a beau- 
tiful sheet of water, and is connected to French lake by a stream 
called the Inlet. From the southeastern shore also Hows a small 
stream connecting it to the Cannon river. This, it will be seen. 
makes the two lakes a "chain." Lake Che-de-weta. formerly 



Roberds lake, covers an area of about 700 acres, in sections 15, 
16, 21 and 22, in the exact geographical center of the township. 
The floor of the lake is made up of a sand bed, making the limpid 
water pure and clear as crystal, while the shore is formed of bold 
promontories and rocks, broken here and there with level 
stretches of pebbly beach. The lake received its original name 
in honor of William Roberds. 

The township contains several other lakes of less importance. 
Mazaska lake enters the town from the northwest quarter and 
covers about one-third of section 6. Dudley's lake is a small 
body of water in the northwestern part of the town, lying mostly 
in section 8. Wells lake is formed by the Cannon river in sec- 
tions 33 and 34, and was named in honor of James Wells, after 
whom the town was also named. Peterson's lake is located in 
sections 30 and 31. There are a number of other small bodies 
of water in various parts of the town, sometimes called lakes, 
but more properly known as ponds. Cannon river enters Wells 
from the south, traversing section 33, forming Wells lake, and 
after passing through 34 and 35, leaves the township and enters 
the city of Faribault. Several small streams flow into this as it 
makes its way through, and help to swell the torrent. The 
streams at many points furnish unexcelled water power, and this 
is made use of to a limited extent. 

Originally this township was a timber territory and covered 
with a heavy growth of the most sturdy varieties. Sections 35 
and 36 were the only portions of it that could, strictly speaking, 
be called prairie land ; here and there, however, throughout the 
town, might be found small natural meadows and partial clear- 
ings covered with brush and hazel. For the greater part, the 
timber has now been cut down, and many fine fields and farms 
mark what was, but little over half a century ago, a trackless 
wilderness. The soil is variable, in some places a tendency to 
clayeyness being visible, and in others a rich dark loam. The 
whole is very productive. 

Mark Wells was one of a party of young men that arrived 
at Faribault with Luke Hulett in 1853. He selected a claim 
in Wells township, on section 35, and put up a small log cabin, 
plastering it with mud and clay. In this he made himself at 
home, and being a single man, in company with several others 
kept bachelor's hall until 1858, when he was married and moved 
to Faribault. About the same time that Mark arrived, a man 
named Standish, of the same state, became his neighbor and 
took a claim adjoining him in section 35. He remained until 
1856, when he returned to his native state. "Bully" Wells had 
also made his appearance, and was making a claim in section 34 
his home. This, it will be remembered, all occurred in 1853, 


and the three settlers mentioned secured places adjoining each 
other in the southeastern part of the township, this being the 
most inviting, because it was prairie land, and almost the only 
locality that was prairie in the township. With these few the 
settlement of the township remain until 1855, and probably the 
fact that the remainder of the town was timber land had some 
influence in keeping the influx at bay for the year 1854. In 
1855, the settlement began to spread, and other parts of the 
town received the initiatory member of society. 

William Roberds, a native of North Carolina, came in from 
Indiana and commenced a settlement near the center of the 
town, taking a claim in section 22, on the banks of the lake 
which now bears his name. He put up a small log shanty the 
same year, erected a saw-mill, and became a very prominent 
man. He made this his home until his death in 1869. John 
Wesley Cowan, a native of Kentucky, having stopped for a 
time in Indiana, soon swelled the Roberds' settlement by taking 
a claim in section 22. He cleared some land and erected a log 
hut. Thomas B. Owings also helped fill the settlement and 
took a claim north of Roberds' Lake. He later moved to the 
Roberds settlement and took a claim in section 22. In the 
meantime a settlement had been commenced north of Roberds' 
lake. John H. Passon, a native of the Buckeye state, made his 
appearance and settled on section 10. He was a millwright by 
trade, and erected a number of mills in Rice county. 

The same year there arrived a party consisting of James 
Byrnes, Michael Brazil, Thomas and Timothy Casey and Patrick 

James Byrnes, who had slopped a while in Vermont, took 
a claim in section 4. Timothy Casey made himself at home 
in section 6, and remained there until his death, in 1869. II is 
widow died in 1876. Thomas Casey surrounded a claim in 
section 5. Michael Brazil secured a tract of land in section 9. 
James O'Brien made a habitation in section 9. John L. Squicr. 
■ if the Empire state, swelled the settlement in the southern part 
of the town by taking a farm from the prairie land of section 
34. Thomas Kirk had taken land on sections 14 and 23, where 
he made his home until the grim messenger called him hence 
in October. 186S. The deceased was the father of the first 
child born in the town. Samuel J. Keller, a native of the 
Buckeye state, having slopped for a time in Indiana, drifted 
in and dropped anchor mi the only quarter left in section 22 in 
the Roberds settlement. He remained a few years and then 
retraced his steps to Indiana. Section 34 received another set- 
tler this year in the pers, m « • f William McCalla, a native of 
Ireland, who, after remaining a few years, removed to Cali- 


fornia. Isaac Anderson, from Ohio, made his appearance and 
proceeded to enlarge the settlement in the northern part of the 
town by taking a farm from section nine, which had already 
received one settler. John Manahan did his part also, securing 
a home in section 1, in June, 1855. Two brothers, John and 
Thomas Johnson, arrived in the summer of this year and both 
took farms in the northern settlement ; John on section 3, where 
he died in 1863, and his brother on section 11, where he remained 
until 1861, when he went to Vermont. This is about the list 
of arrivals for the year 1855, and it will be seen that from the 
three settlements started in the township, one in the south, one 
in the center and one in the north, the incomers had branched 
in every direction until every portion of the township had re- 
ceived one or more settlers, who had gone directly to work, 
putting up shanties and opening land for cultivation. The fol- 
lowing year the immigration commenced and continued with a 
rush until all the government land within the borders had been 
secured. We shall endeavor to give most of these arrivals, 
although to give them all would be almost impossible. S. O. 
Case, originally from Ohio, but directly from Grant county, 
Indiana, arrived in 1856, and planted his stakes in section 3. 
He later located on section 27. Peter Dunn settled near Mr. 
Case, in section 4. He was a native of the land of the Sham- 
rock, having stopped for a time in Vermont. Robert Dudley, 
of the same nationality, stationed himself on the farm lying 
south of the one secured by Peter Dunn, in the same section. 
Andrew Fredrickson came about the same time and located on 
a farm in section 3, in the same neighborhood. Many others 
came in in 1856, many of whom have again pulled up stakes 
and started on, with their faces still turned to an ever-promising 
West. In 1857, John Murray, a native of the Emerald Isle, 
put in an appearance and secured a tract of land. Barnard 
Mehagnoul, a native of Belgium, also arrived about the same 
time and pre-empted a farm in section 29. The following year, 
1858, he was joined by a number of his countrymen, named 
Duchennes, who settled a short distance north of him, and about 
these gathered quite a Belgium settlement. In 1859, came many 
others, among whom may be mentioned John and Owen Varley, 
who took claims in section 11. Joseph Milliron arrived and 
secured a habitation in section 16. 

W. H. Pease was a pioneer in Minnesota, arriving from New 
York state in 1855. He finally secured a place in section 21 

A. C. Judd, another prominent man in Wells, and a native 
of the Empire state, arrived in 1860 and located in section 33. 

E. A. Orne, of Boston ; Joseph Sescoult, of Canada ; and C. 


Meillier, of Wisconsin, later arrived at various times and settled 
in the township, where they became influential men. 

Joseph Ducreyt, a Frenchman, was another early settler in 
ihe county, and a prominent man. He originally took a claim 
in Wheatland in 1856, but finally found his way to the shores of 
the lake bearing the memorial name in honor of his nativity, 
in section 17. 

Charles T. Winans, a native of New York state, came to 
Minnesota in 1856, and located in Warsaw. In 1860, after hav- 
ing been engaged for several years in mercantile business in 
Faribault, he moved to section 15 in Wells. 

Asa Bebee, a native of Monroe count)', New York, having 
stopped for a time in Illinois, was another early settler in this 
vicinity. He first located in Warsaw, but later located in section 
26, in Wells township. 

James G. Scott, another prominent man, came to this county 
in 1854, and settled first in Faribault, where he was engaged in 
various pursuits, afterward locating in Wells township. 

James Wells, or, as he was always known, "Bully" Wells, 
having been a prominent and conspicuous figure in the settle- 
ment of Wells, which town received its name in honor of him, 
a few words as to a sketch of his life will not only be interesting 
to the residents of Wells but to the entire county. James Wells 
was the true name of the subject of this sketch, but he won the 
nickname of Bully Wells, lie was born in New Jersey in 1804, 
and when a boy ran away from home, going to sea on an Ameri- 
can war vessel, serving as a cabin boy. He finally enlisted in 
the United States army and served for fifteen years, coming to 
Fort Snelling in 1819 with Colonel Leavenworth. When his 
time as a soldier expired he started a little trading post at Little 
Rapids, or what is now Chaska, and remained at this point for 
some time. September 12, 1836, he was married to Jane, a sister 
of the wife of Alexander Faribault, and a daughter of Duncan 
Graham. The marriage took place at the house of Oliver Crattc. 
at Fori Snelling. the ceremony being performed by the Indian 
agent at the fort, Lawrence Taliaferro. The same year he came 
Southwest and started a small trading post at the point where 
Okaman, Waseca county, now is, and remained here for about 
one year, when he again removed, this time to locate at the 
head of Lake Pepin, on the Mississippi river, where he carried 
on a trading business until he came to Wells township. Having 
made up his mind while passing through to take land in the 
vicinity of the Cannon lake, as soon as it came into market, in 
1853 he made his way to the lake and started a trading post on 
section 34, at the foot of Cannon lake, in Wells township. Here 


he did a profitable business for a short time, but gradually turned 
his attention to farming, and continued in it until the close of 
the Sioux war in 1863, when he was murdered mysteriously, 
the supposition being that it was the work of the treacherous 

The first blacksmith shop opened in the township was erected 
in 1855 by William Roberds, in section 22, on the shore of 
Roberds' lake. The shop was operated by his nephew, Free- 
man Roberds, for about three years, when it was discontinued, 
the manipulator moving to Faribault. The first birth in the 
township of Wells took place on section 23, in October, 1855. 
and ushered into existence Elizabeth, a daughter of Thomas and 
May Kirk. The father of the child died in October, 1868. The 
next event of this kind brought into the light John, a son of 
T. B. and Elizabeth Owens, on May 22, 1856. This child, how- 
ever, died on December 11, 1864. On February 4, 1857, a son 
was born to Isaac and Lydia Anderson, who was christened 
Elias, and who now lives in Faribault, a grown man. Four 
days later, on February 8, John C, a son of Peter and Margaret 
O'Brien, was born. Within a month after the arrival above 
mentioned, a daughter was born to Mr. and Mrs. Peter Dunn. 
The child was named Maria. Leonora, a daughter of John H. 
and Minerva Passon, was born on May 19, 1857. 

One of the earliest marriages to occur in the township of 
Wells was the union of Martha Roberds and J. S. McCartney, 
by E. J. Crump, Esq., at the residence of the bride's father. 
William Roberds, in section 22. 

In October, 1856, Joseph Byrne and Alice O'Brien were 
made one in the bonds of matrimony and commenced house- 
keeping in his log house on his farm in section 4. 

Pursuant to notice the first township meeting was held on 
May 11, 1858, in the log schoolhouse in section 14, and organ- 
ized the township by the election of the following officers : 
Supervisors, Thomas Kirk, chairman, William McCalla and Pat- 
rick O'Brien ; collector, J. W. Cowan ; clerk, S. P. Case ; assessor. 
T. B. Owens ; constables, William Roberds and Timothy Casey ; 
overseer of the poor, S. C. Dunham. 

The government of the town has been tranquil and even. 
The funds and expenditures have been managed in a frugal but 
efficient manner, and on a whole, the interests of the public in 
town matters have been taken care of in a way that is com- 

In 1878 the township purchased a school house on section 
22, the original cost of which was $500, to be used for a town 


Bridgewater township is amply provided with railroad facili- 
ties and water power. The Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul, 
the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific and the Chicago Great 
Western all operate lines through its area. The Cannon river 
divides the town, winding its tortuous course almost parallel 
with the railroads running in a northeasterly direction. This 
town is bounded on the north by Dakota county, on the south 
by Cannon City township, on the east by Northfield, and on the 
west by Forest and Webster. It embraces forty sections, in all 
25,600 acres, and takes in all of township 111, range 20, with 
the exception of the northeast corner section, and also includes 
sections 31 to 35 inclusive, of township 112, same range. This 
makes it the second township in size in the county. 

The township is well watered by numerous streams, among 
them Heath creek. Spring creek and others of more or less im- 
portance. The Cannon river has been mentioned elsewhere. 
Aside from these rivers and streams there are several small 
lakes nestling among the hills, among which are Macklewain, 
Spring, Albers and Hart. 

One peculiar physical feature of the township is what is 
known as "Hog's Back," which is a narrow ridge, composed of 
sand and coarse gravel, about twenty to forty feet high and 100 
feet through at the base. This commences in section 21 and 
extends in a southwesterly direction for a mile or more. This 
mound is due to geologic action in ages far remote. 

The auspicious epoch of the first arrival in this township 
dates back farther than most of the subdivisions of Rice county, 
and it may be said that from the first advent of the early settler 
until its fertile lands were the abiding place of thrifty farmers, 
the tide of incomers was constant and irrepressible. In this 
sketch it is not possible, nor is it the intention, to carry the set- 
tlement r.f tlu- township in detail up to the present day, but an 
effort has been made to chronicle the interesting incidents of 
early settlement and the most notable arrivals. 

The first exploration of this township, with a view to securing 
homes, occurred in 1852. 

Albon and John llovt, two brothers, were the first to make 
their way to the town, and their first trip through was in the 
fall of 1852, although they did not take claims until some time 
later. They had been stopping on the Mississippi river for a 
short time, and having heard considerable about the Cannon river 
vallev, decided to take their earthly possessions on their backs 
and see what the reports were based on. They started with the 
intention of going as far as Faribault before returning. Their 


first night was spent in camp on the Vermillion river, and the 
next night at Waterford, from there passing over the territory 
of Bridgewater and reaching Faribault. Here they met Alex- 
ander Faribault, who told them that they had just passed over 
the finest country in the territory of Minnesota, and they decided 
to look more closely on their return. They returned by the same 
route as the)' came, but failed to find claims that suited them. 
Albon Hoyt later said : "Although one upon the land at that 
time was 'monarch of all he surveyed,' it was a more difficult 
matter to select farms than would be imagined. The country was 
beautiful and impressive. I could gaze all about me, on the beau- 
tiful hills covered with a mass of green verdure swaying in the 
gentle breeze, that dipped silently down to the level of the many 
trickling streams, and say, 'here is the place of my choice' ; but, 
upon gazing to the right or left I saw another that lured me on 
by its fascinating beauty. And I followed. The mania had 
seized me and almost before I knew it I had reached my old 
stamping ground on the Mississippi." The brothers remained 
on the Mississippi until March 10, 1853, when they again started 
for the Cannon river valley, this time determined to stay. They 
brought with them a couple of barrels of flour, 200 pounds of 
sugar, axes, etc. A man by the name of Irish brought them in 
by team, and the greater portion of the distance they were 
obliged to cut their way through the timber. In due time they 
arrived at Faribault and pushed on to Cannon City, where they 
camped and began to look for claims in earnest. Albon Hoyt 
finally took a claim on section 11, in Bridgewater; John, his 
brother, took a place west of him, adjoining the site of Dundas 
village, and Irish made tip his mind to secure the townsite of 
Dundas, which he did. 

John and Albon commenced at once the erection of a log 
cabin, the size of which was 12x14. They put up the sides of 
poplar logs and then Albon Hoyt and Irish left John on the 
ground with provisions, etc., to finish the cabin while they 
returned to the shores of the Mississippi to attend to their 
improvements there. While they were gone, and before John 
had roofed the cabin, a snow storm came up, and John, in laying 
in the cold and wet, became very sick with fever and ague ; so 
bad, indeed, that he became delirious and was in a very dangerous 
condition as he had no means of starting a fire. In this condition 
he was discovered by the Indians, and they, thinking him drunk. 
began sporting with him, saying, "Minnewankon seetya do," 
(whisky bad very), and the band finally went into camp near by. 
It did not take long, however, for them to discover that he was 
not drunk, but very sick, and iwo Indians came to him one day, 
saying, "Puck-a-chee Habo tee-pee," which meant, "Go to Fari- 


bault's home." After a time he was taken to Faribault by the 
Indians, and there stayed at Bush's house until he recovered, the 
"medicine man" making him potions which worked a speedy cure. 

In a short time a Mr. Clossen came through Faribault with 
rive yoke of oxen, and he and John moved together back to the 
Hoyt farms in Bridgewater. Here they finished the cabin begun 
by John and Albon, and broke ten acres on John's place, this 
being the first furrow turned in the township. In June Clossen 
yoked his oxen and took John to the Mississippi, where Albon 
and Irish were, and here he remained until fully recovered. In 
the meantime Irish had taken the claim where Dundas now is. 
with the water power, and intended to get a friend from Ohio to 
go in partnership with him in the erection of a sawmill. 

In June Albon Hoyt, Irish and a man named Bliss came to 
the farms to make improvements, and Albon planted two acres fc 
potatoes, etc., by just raising the sod and putting his germ 
underneath. After planting he did not touch or cultivate them 
until harvest. When harvest time came the entire force left to 
attend to the crop on the Mississippi river, where John still re- 
mained, recuperating his health. 

In September, 1SS3, Albon and John both returned to Bridge 
water, this time with the intention of remaining, and found that 
during their short absence another pioneer had put in his appear- 
ance. This was Mahlon Lockwood. who had arrived with his 
wife and several children, and located just south of Dundas, and. 
as he brought a cow and a yoke of oxen, he was a valuable acqui- 
sition to the meager settlement. He had already put up a little 
board shanty, the material for which he had brought with him. 
but this, it is said, would not keep the sun out, so the entire- 
party at once commenced work on and soon finished a substan- 
tial log house for the protection of the Lockwood family, and all 
began to make preparations for the winter, which they knew 
would be long and severe. Nor were they wrong, as the Ion-. 
dreary and bitterly cold months that followed proved, and some 
of the settlers hauled rails for fuel when their faces were actually- 
coated with a veil of ice and their fingers frozen stiff. 

The Indians were plenty in the neighborhood and the timber 
abounded with all kinds of game; deer, elk and hear were the 
main articles of food, and a good hunter in those days could 
always be a high liver. The settlers made many fast and useful 
friends among the Indians, and all of them having learned their 
language were almost as much at home among them as though 
they were whites. The Indians were not troublesome in regard 
to thieving if treated well, and the following incident will serve 
to show the confidence felt in them. An old Indian came one day 
to Albon Hoyt's cabin and wanted to borrow his rifle, saying he 


could not kill deer with his shotgun, and if the white man 
would only allow him to take the rifle three weeks, he would 
return it at the end of that time in as good order as it was at the 
time of his getting it. Albon allowed him to take it, and the 
Indian disappeared. P'or three weeks nothing was seen of 
Indian or gun, but on the day that the three weeks expired the 
Indian and rifle appeared at the door, with a handsome present 
of game that compensated him. Many incidents like this occurred, 
and the old settlers came to believe, in the words of Mr. Hoyt, 
that "if treated right they are considerable better than the aver- 
age white." 

This carried the settlers through a hard winter and brought 
them into the spring of 1854, with Albon and John Hoyt and the 
Lockwood family. Irish had gone to the Mississippi, intending to 
return during the summer. Hopes ran high among them, for they 
were confident of a good crop, and all had succeeded in getting 
more or less land ready for seeding; in fact, all the available land 
was sown until their seed was exhausted. A good crop was the 
result, although the acreage sown was comparatively very small. 

In the meantime the settlement had commenced in various 
parts of the county. Northfield and vicinity had received a 
number of settlers, and the entire settlement north of Faribault 
was known as "Alexandria," after Jonathan Alexander, who was 
an early pioneer near Northfield. Other portions of this town 
had also begun making evolutions toward civilization, as in 
the same year (1854) Edmund Larkins, Job Chester, Joseph 
Drake and Daniel Bundy all made their appearance and began 
opening farms in the eastern part of the town. This settlement, 
however, properly belonged to the Northfield section, as the} 
were divided from Dundas by the heavy timber ridge, and it 
was not until several years after the settlement began that a 
road was cut and graded through the timber strip. 

C. C. Stetson, from Philadelphia, came in the month of July, 
1854, on his way to California, but as he neared the Cannon 
valley he heard so much of its beautiful scenery, its excellent 
farming land, and the unsurpassed advantages of the country, 
he determined to secure a farm, which he did on section 24. He 
came in company with Morris B. Stiles, with a team they had 
bought in St. Paul. Stiles took a claim adjoining Stetson, on 
section 24, this section being on what was then known as the 
Indian trail, a north and south stage line from Fort Snelling to 
Faribault. A short time after their arrival the Hastings stage 
passed through their farms, this being an east and west line. 
The former of these received its name of "Indian Trail" from 
the number of Indians that were constantly passing over it to 
and from the agency at Fort Snelling, and after the agency was 


removed from there this was the established treadway of the In- 
dians in visiting one another, until the Sioux outbreak in 1862. 
This road is now the county road through the eastern part of 
Bridgewater, having been straightened considerably. 

Stetson and Stiles at once put up a log shanty and com- 
menced keeping house. They were not troubled with Indians, 
except as beggars, and although they would not "steal for the 
sake of stealing," as is claimed by some, victuals and liquor had 
to be carefully guarded or locked up. C. C. Stetson kept several 
cows and made excellent butter, which he used to treat his 
visitors with. Mr. Stetson also started a blacksmith shop soon 
after he got here, which was the tirst shop in this part of the 
country, and did a good business shoeing horses on the stage 
lines. Morris Stiles' place finally went into the hands of P. 
' )leson. The latter gentleman, in company with Capt. John 
Hanson, came in 1854. In June, 1854, the eastern part of the 
township received its first settlers in the persons of the Drake 
brothers, Charles B., J. R. and A. W. Daniel Bundy came about 
the same time. They all put up log cabins, in which they lived 
for a number of years. November, 1854, H. M. Matteson, a New 
Yorker, arrived with a livery from St. Paul, prospecting for a 
chance to settle and make a speculation. He was favorably 
impressed with the location, but did not settle or take any land 
at the time, driving back to St. Paul and returning the following 
year. Arriving in the spring of 1855, he jumped the claim that 
Mr. Irish had selected and paid him for improvements. This 
was the claim where Dundas is, including the water power, 
and he at once commenced laying plans for throwing a dam 
across the river and erecting a sawmill. His next move was 
to get out timber for a mill, but before it was fairly begun he 
sold his entire interest and 740 acres of land to the Archibalds, 
in June, 1857. Mr. Matteson, after selling his property here. 
removed to Faribault. This year, 1855, yielded a most bountiful 
harvest to the pioneers of Bridgewater. Wheat yielded from 
forty to forty-five bushels per acre, and the average price 
received was $1.50 per bushel. James Babb, of New Hampshire. 
had become one of the settlements in April, 1854, with his wife, 
and was located southwest of Dundas. He afterwards, in com- 
pany with another early pioneer, commenced the erection of a 
awmill. James Smith was another who came this year and 
remained for several years. He was afterwards town clerk for a 
number of years in Faribault, and was finally killed by Indians 
.,n his way to California. In the spring of 1855 Jacob Emery 
made his appearance, ami after looking about for a short time. 
decided to locate <>n Little Prairie, south of Dundas. He cut his 
way three miles through the heavy timber to get to the place 


that suited him. He finally reached it and settled on sections 
21 and 28. 

Then the settlement commenced very rapidly and in June 
and July of that year one could look in any direction and sec 
the white-winged prairie schooners. Many came in and found 
temporary homes, who, in the hard times that followed, sold 
for little or nothing, and left the country. Among those who 
came to stay were the Donaldson brothers, James, John, Isaac 
and Robert, who all settled in the timber in the southern part 
of the town. The Sheppards and Macklewains came and settled 
in the southern part, the latter naming the little lake in section 
32. J. S. and George Archibald arrived in June, 1855, and 
platted Dundas, besides building the mills. 

The first religious services in the town were held in Edmund 
Larkins' home in 1855, by Rev. Mr. Cressey, of the Baptist 
faith. The same gentleman also held services in D. B. Drake's 
private house to an audience of about thirty persons, in 1856. 
The first death in Bridgewater occurred in the fall of 1854, in 
the departure of Jesse, a child of Edmund and Jane Larkins, 
who lived in the Stetson settlement. A son of these parents was 
among the first births and occurred in the spring of 1855. The 
child was christened Bruce. A. W. Drake deeded a cemetery 
ground to Northfield, and his father was the first to find his last 
resting place in it. Joseph Drake died in April, 1857, at the age 
of sixty-three years. Another early death was the demise of 
Mrs. Owen, in Dundas, in 1855, early in the spring. The earliest 
marriage, undoubtedly, in the township was celebrated in 1855, 
when Mary M. Drake and Daniel Bundy were united in the 
bonds of wedlock. In 1856 Catherine Tucker was united to 
Smith Alexander. In June, 1857, C. C. Stetson and Amelia 
Howe were married. 

The first postoffice established in the town was known as 
the Fountain Grove postoffice, and was opened in the winter 
of 1855-56, in the northeastern part of the town. The office was 
removed to Northfield within one year. 

Edmund Larkins was one of the arrivals in 1854, and he 
brought a number of head of young stock with him, settling in 
section 24. 

A terrible murder was committed in the town of Bridgewater 
on June 30, 1867. The criminal was Alfred Hoyt, the victim 
being Josiah Stamford, who had a farm adjoining Hoyt's. There 
had been some trouble about the trespassing of the cattle, and 
the parties met in the woods and had some words, when Hoyt 
felled his neighbor to the ground by a blow from an axe and 
then cut off his head. He went to the house and made a mur- 
derous assault upon Mrs. Stamford with the axe, but she being 


a muscular woman, defended herself until her daughters and 
sons, coming to the rescue, secured him by tying, and then he 
announced that he had killed the father, and on repairing to the 
spot it was found to be too true. The man was at once placed 
in the hands of the officers of the law, and upon trial was judged 
insane and accordingly committed to the insane asylum. 

The first town meeting of Bridgewater, for the purpose of 
organizing the township, was held on May 11, 1858, at the house 
of Fernando Thompson, in the village of Dundas. The meeting 
was called to order and C. C. Stetson was chosen chairman. 
pro tern., and Benjamin Lockerby, moderator. The)- next pro- 
ceeded to ballot for officers, which resulted as follows: Super 
visors, Benjamin Lockerby, chairman ; Jacob Emery and J. A. 
Upham; clerk, C. C. Stetson; assessor, Royal Esterbrook; col- 
lector, Fernando Thompson ; overseer of the poor, James Gates ; 
justices of the peace, George Barton, David Hatfield and W. B. 
Taylor receiving the same number of votes, none was declared 
elected ; constable, Charles B. Drake and Fernando Thompson 
were a tie. The whole number of votes cast at this election was 

During the war this township did its part, furnishing men 
as fast almost as they were called for, and at the time of the 
organization of the First Minnesota Regiment three men went 
into it from Archibald Brothers' store. A special town meeting 
was held in 1864, at which the sum of $1,500 was voted to pay a 
bounty to volunteers, and bonds were issued at 7 per cent to pay 
the same. The sum of $25 was paid to each man. The judges 
appointed were J. R. Drake, H. Drought and D. Hatfield. At a 
session some time afterward an additional appropriation of $900 
was made, there being at that time four volunteers needed. 

In the spring of 1856 it was decided to build a schoolhouse, 
and Charles Wheeler and others, during the night, quietly appro- 
priated timber from section 16. In the daytime they hauled it 
away, and put up their schoolhouse, the size of which was about 
20x30 feet, upon the southeast corner of section 12. 

The first school was called to order soon after by Martha 
Kelley, later Mrs. A. Dodge, of Northfield. School was con- 
tinned in this building two terms each year until 1880, when tin- 
old house was burned. This was the first schoolhouse erected 
in the county. 


Wheeling township is one of the eastern tier of Rice count} 
towns and one of the most progressive. It is composed, as orig- 
inally surveyed, of thirty-six sections or square miles, in all 
23,040 acres. The contiguous surroundings are Northfield on the 


north, Richland on the south, Cannon City township on the 
west, and Goodhue county on the east. Wheeling may be called 
one of the prairie towns of the county, as almost all of the area 
is made up of prairie land. The southern portion is quite level, 
but as one approaches the north the surface is more rolling, and 
the northwest corner is hilly. The soil is variable, the southern 
part being a rich, dark loam, while in the north, where the prairie 
is more rolling, the soil is of a lighter color, in some places 
having a clay mixture, and in others it is of a sandy character. 
The town is well suited for all kinds" of agricultural pursuits, 
and also makes excellent grazing land, as the fine natural 
meadows are covered with all species of indigenous grasses. 

There are no large streams and but few small ones in the 
town. Prairie creek touches the northwest quarter section as it 
passes on its way from Cannon City township to Northfield. A 
branch of Prairie Creek starts from a spring on section 21, pass- 
ing north to section 16, then northwest to section 17, thence 
north to section 8, where it takes an easterly course across sec- 
tion 9 to section 10; from there it runs in a northerly course 
through section 3 to the town of Northfield, where it joins 
Prairie creek. This stream passes through quite a deep ravine, 
and on the way is joined by several small rivulets. The hea'd 
waters of this stream never fail, but in some places the bed is 
dry at times, and it is probable that there is a subterranean 
passage through which it passes in dry seasons. A stream called 
Little Cannon rises on section 13 and passes in an easternly direc- 
tion to Goodhue count} - , where it soon becomes quite a river and 
empties into Cannon river near the falls. 

The actual settlement of this town commenced in June. 1854, 
when a party of Germans, who had stopped for a short time in 
Illinois, made their appearance, having come with ox teams and 
been four weeks on the road. The party consisted of Henry 
Bultmann and family, Jacob Blank and family, Louis Helberg. 
Friederich Hogrefe and John George Veeh. They arrived June 
15, 1854. 

Jacob Blank was the first to make a claim, and drove his 
stakes in sections 15 and 22, immediately commencing improve- 
ments. He had brought with him a pair of steers and two cows 
that he used in the yoke, and he at once put up a little hay 
shanty to live in. In this same little hay hut the first child 
born in the township first saw the light. In the fall Blank built 
a log house, into which he moved that winter. As he could not 
buy any lumber he had to manufacture it himself. With his axe 
he split stakes from oak with which to cover the roof, and for 
flooring he split the boards from basswood, making them about 
two inches thick. He cut small trees in the woods, which he 


converted into laths, nailing them inside and then plastering 
with clay. He lived in this house until 1864, when he built 
another log house. Mr. Blank improved his farm and lived there 
until October, 1878, when he sold out and retired to Faribault. 

Mr. Veeh made the second claim on section 21. He was a 
widower with no family, and improved a small part of the land. 
In about three years he sold and made his home with his son- 
in-law, Jacob Blank, until his death, which occurred on February 
22, 1873. 

Louis Helberg was the third to select a home, which he did 
on section 21. He was a single man, but soon found a partner. 
They were the first couple married in the town. He improved 
the land and built a good set of buildings and made his home 
there until the time of his death which occurred in August, 1879. 

Henry Bultmann was the fourth man to make a claim, which 
he did on section 17. He also built a hay shanty in which he 
lived a short time, then built a log house, using fence rails for 
the floor. He lived in that but a few years, then built a frame 
house. Mr. Hogrefe made the fifth claim, on sections 17 and 
8. He was a single man, but married soon after coming here. 
He carried on his farm a few years, then engaged in the minis- 
try. In August these colonists were joined by another of their 
countrymen, named Henry C. Rolling, who also came from 
Illinois, where he had been living a few years. He selected land 
on section 21, then went back to Illinois and returned with his 
family, living the first winter in his brother-in-law's log house, 
Louis Helberg. In the spring of 1855 he built a log house, 
sawing the lumber with a whip-saw, and lived in that a few 
years; then built the neat frame house. Henry < iroto, another 
German, came from Illinois about the same time and settled on 
section 17. About this time the settlement of this town began 
in earnest, and a number of Scandinavian families came from 
Wisconsin, where they had made a temporary stop when first 
coming from Norway. Those who remained here were Truls 
Earlandson, John Olson. Andrew Olson, Seaver Halgrimson 
and Fief Trulson. They performed the tedious journey with 
ox teams, bringing their families. They at once improvised log 
residences, with hark roofs, and split basswood logs for floors 

Earlandson t<><>k a claim in section 6. Trulson made a claim 
cm section 3, where lie opened a blacksmith shop; he remained 
there until 1872. when he -"id oul and moved to Kandiyohi 
county. John Olson planted himself in section 6. Vndrew Olson 
claimed a place in section 5. In 187'» he went to Dakota. Hans 
Anderson came from Wisconsin, where he had been sojourning, 
and settled in section 7. \\\> wife was burned t" death by a 
kerosene accident, lie afterwards married Elling Johnson's 


widow and moved to Grant county. Seaver Halgrimson, an- 
other of the party of Norwegians, arrived in July of the same 
year, and after drifting about a short time anchored on section 
5, where he remained steadfast until his death in 1870. His 
widow married again. Elling Johnson, of Norway nativity, 
came from Iowa and stationed himself on section 8. 

In 1855 the arrivals were quite numerous, and most of them 
will be mentioned. Ever Bonde, of Norway, came here from 
Iowa, where he had been for a year, and settled on section 11, 
where he spent the remainder of his days. Ole Sherven, who 
first settled in Wisconsin, came to this place from Iowa, where 
he had lived five years, and secured a place in section 18. Adam 
Knopf, P. Wolf and Christian Erb, natives of Germany, came 
here from Cook county, Illinois. Wolf took his claim in section 
14. He was killed by an accident in the timber February 21, 
1857. Erb took his farm in section 23. He improved the land 
and built a house. In 1870 he sold out and moved to Cannon 
City. Knopf surrounded a claim in section 22 and another in 
section 23, which he improved. Truls Halgrimson came during 
this year and settled in section 3. Ole Olson Broden was an- 
other of the "fifty-fivers." Another settler about this time was 
Augustus Meyer with his family, who had been here but about 
two weeks, when one Sunday morning he shaved himself, lighted 
his pipe and proposed to go to the timber to look out a road on 
which he could haul some wood to the prairie, but he never 
returned. Several days were spent by the whole settlement in 
hunting for him without avail, and it was not until eighteen 
months afterward that his bones were found bleaching near his 
shoes, pipe and other articles, on section 16, on the land now 
owned by Henry Bultmann. The manner of his death is a pro- 
found mystery. Ole Benson made a claim in section 10. Jacob 
J. Bosshart came here from Iowa. John Hanson found a place 
that suited him in section four, where he died in a few years. 
Watts A. Pyc, an Englishman, came from Illinois and took a 
place in section eighteen. Hugh McDurland, a native of Penn- 
sylvania, came from there and halted and went to work in sec- 
tion 30. The accessions to the town settlement in 1856 were 
valuable, and will be mentioned as far as remembered. 

Ole Fingalson at first alighted in section 2, to which he 
devoted himself up to 1878, when he sold his place and moved 
to Becker county. Truls Fingalson was stationed for some 
years in section 2. Erick Erickson Rood was another comer 
this year. His place was in sections five and six. He removed 
to Kandiyohi county in 1866. Jacob Bosshardt purchased a 
farm in section 21, in 1855, and brought his family from Penn- 
sylvania in the fall of the same year. Syver Aslackson came up 


from Houston county, where he first lived a while after crossing 
the Mississippi; his place was in section 10. Hans O. Sten- 
bakken, a native of Norway, settled in section 12. Mark Boss- 
hart, of Switzerland, cultivated a farm in section 22, but in 1872 
he was called hence. William Frederick came from Illinois and 
drifted into section 28. William Grote took a claim on sections 
26 and 27. A house was put up and he lived there to the time 
of his death in 1871. Frederick Knaus built his castle in section 
23. Osmund Osmundson came here from California, and at 
first built a timber residence in section 14, but later erected a 
brick house in section 11. John Thompson came here from Rock 
county, Wisconsin, and transplanted himself in section 2. In 
1857, William Boltman, from Germany, came and found an un- 
occupied spot in section 25. Christian Deike, also a German, 
arrived in 1859, and his place is in section 32. 

The first birth in the township occurred on October 2, 1854, 
in a little hay shanty put up for temporary shelter by the father. 
The parents were Jacob and Elizabeth Blank, the child being 
christened Caroline. Another early birth was the bringing into 
existence of Halgrim, son of Seaver and Christine Halgrimson, 
January 20, 1855. In the fall of this year, Julia, daughter of 
Truls and Annie Earlandson, was born. The first marriage in 
the township, that there is any record of, took place November 
5, 1855, the high contracting parties being Louis Helberg and 
Wilhelmina Meyer. The groom died in 1879. The next mar- 
riage was Friedrick Hogrefe to Dorothy Fischer, in December. 
1855. Jacob Johnson and Cecelia Evanson were made one in 
the spring of 1856. 

The first town meeting was in a schoolhouse in district No. 
27, on May 11, 1858. The officers elected were: Supervisors, 
Watts A. 1'ye, chairman, Christian Erb and Lewis Everson ; 
clerk, Augustus Sickler; assessor, Ole Sherven; collector, Lewis 
Helberg; justices of the peace. Joseph Covert and Henry C. 
Rolling; overseer of the poor. John Brown; constables, George 
Fogg and Jacob J. Bosshart. The government thus started has 
wended the even tenor of its way ever since. 

The town hall was built in 1870. It is a frame building 
costing $600. Its location is on the northeast quarter of section 
21. Before its completion meetings were held in private houses 
and in schoolhouses. 

The town paid in bounties $7,200 and sent thirty-two men 
into the army. 


Richland township forms the southeast corner of Rice 
county and consists of its original thirty-six sections. Its soil 


well deserves the name that the township has been given. Good- 
hue county is its neighbor on the east, Dodge county touches its 
southeast corner, Steele county is on the south, the town of 
Walcott on the west and Wheeling on the north. 

It is a prairie town, somewhat rolling, and remarkably well 
watered by small streams which coalesce in the interior of the 
town to form the north branch of the Zumbro river. It seems 
quite unnecessary to describe the course of these rivulets, except, 
perhaps, to say that they are but two or three miles apart at the 
widest point, and this part of the topography leaves nothing to 
be desired. 

Section 12, through which the river leaves the town, was 
rather of a timber section, having more than all the rest of the 
township, and early received the name of Norwegian Grove, as 
the people of that nationality secured possession of it when first 
in the market. There were smaller groves on sections 16 and 
31. The character of the soil is variable, being in places a loam 
with a sand mixture, and in other places what may be called 
black muck. It is everywhere deep and very productive. 

The year 1854 was the first to witness the advent of the 
westward bound emigrant. Four sturdy Norwegians who had 
stopped a short time in Wisconsin came here in the spring of 
this year with ox teams. Their names were Halver Halverson, 
Erik Gunderson, Ole Larson and Osten Oleson. Gunderson 
staked out the first claim on the southeast quarter of section 12, 
near the Zumbro. He put up a hay shanty and made himself 
comfortable while getting up a log shelter. Halverson claimed 
three forties in section 11 and one in section 12. He started life 
in a tent which he improvised, using his wagon cover for the 
top. Olson also secured his acres in section 12, which he culti- 
vated until 1863, when his mortal remains were deposited be- 
neath the sod. Ole Larson went into section 10 and succeeded 
in getting up the first house in town, which he moved into in 
September, 1854. In 1856, he went to Winona on some busi- 
ness with the land office, and never returned. What became of 
him is still a mystery most profound. The conjecture at the 
time was that he was murdered. 

In the fall of this year there was quite a little party came 
together and selected claims in section 30 and the vicinity. 
Among this number were F. W. Frink, J. Kinnison, Ozro Carter 
and Willard Carter, two brothers, whose claims fell in the town- 
ship of Walcott. These people returned to bring their families 
the following spring. Other comers were Edward and Sumner 
Beach, father and son; H. F. Smith, H. M. Beardsley, who 
located in that neighborhood. 

In 1855 there was a party who came from Wisconsin, some 


of whom had stopped a while there to create homes for them- 
selves, and others came directly from the eastern states. Arriv- 
ing here they were so well pleased with the country that some 
of them at once proceeded to locate their claims in this town, 
and brief sketches of these man are here given. 

J. M. Strunk was from Chautauqua county, New York; he 
selected a place in section 7 and lived in his wagon for a while, 
then in a bark shanty until he could get up his log cabin. Mr. 
Barlow settled in section 7, where he lived, making improve- 
ments, for several years. Edwin Wheeler found a place in sec- 
tion 18. William Close, a native of Ohio, came here from 
Indiana during the summer of 1855, and secured a foothold in 
section 31, where he remained until 1875, when his place was 
exchanged for city property and he removed to Faribault. F. 
Herrington, whose birthplace was Delaware, put in a personal 
appearance in the fall of this year and boarded with H. M. 
Beardsley through the winter. In the spring he bought a claim 
in section 29. During the year 1856 the accessions to the colony 
in this township were quite important. John Close, from the 
Buckeye state, came up here from Iowa, where he had remained 
for a year. He came across the country with an ox team, a 
distance of more than 300 miles through a trackless and of course 
bridgeless country, and such a trip, it seems almost needless 
to add, required great good judgment as to the direction to take 
and as to how to compass the various difficulties being con- 
stantly met. He secured the northeast quarter of section 29. 

During the first two or three years of the early settlement of 
the township there were quite a number of the sons of the 
Emerald Isle who secured homes here. John G. Miller, of Ger- 
many, came here in 1856, and worked a farm on the school sec- 
tion 36 for two years, and then traded some land he had acquired 
in Iowa before coming here for a farm in section 29. Nathan 
S. Wheeler and his son, George H., came here from Illinois, 
being natives of the Empire state; the father pre-empted a place 
in section 1 and the son staked out some land in section 13. In 
the fall they returned to spend the winter in Illinois. The young 
man came back in the spring. The old gentleman visited the 
town again in the summer of 1858, but returned to remain in 
Illinois. The year 1857 saw fresh arrivals, among them John 
A. Mather, and his position was in section 26. He improved 
that plare for a while, then sold out and bought in section 27, 
where he lived and wrought until his earthly sojourn was ended 
in 1875. Frank Gowen, of Maine, started a farm in section 26. 
but after a time moved on to Nebraska. During this year sev- 
eral Massachusetts men arrived, among them Andrew and Enoch 
Story and Washington Tarr. Mr. Tarr took a claim in section 


3; Enoch Story took his slice from section 2, and in the fall they 
both returned to the old Bay state. Andrew Story bought the 
east half of the southeast quarter of section 2, but at that 
time remained but a few weeks. In 1861, however, he returned 
and permanently located on the claim first taken by Washington 
Tarr. Harvey Y. Scott, of New Jersey, came to Faribault in 
1854, in the month of June, where he remained until 1860. In 
1863 he came to Richland, having secured a place in section 4. 

One of the earliest marriages was Henry M. Beardsley and 
Ariminta Newcomb, by Rev. B. F. Haviland, in 1857. Knud 
Finset was married to Bess Berget Halverson about the same 
time. January 2, 1857, Capt. John Hanson was united to Lena 
Halverson. They were married in Faribault. Earlier than any 
of the above was the union of E. L. Beach and Elizabeth Beard- 
sley in the year 1856. Columbia Adams, a girl of sixteen years 
of age, was struck by lightning late in June, 1855, and instantly 
killed. Mrs. Tew was injured by the same bolt, and never 
recovered from the shock, but passed away a few years after- 

John Wesley, son of John and Susan Close, was born on June 
4, 1857. Richard, a son of Richard and Bridget Leonard, was 
born May 10, 1857. Halver Austin, son of Osten Olson, was 
born January 14, 1856. 

Richland cemetery was laid out in 1873, and the mortal re- 
mains of Herbert Stickney were the first to be deposited there, 
early in December of that year. The ground was purchased of 
Alonzo Stickney, in section 30. 

The Catholic cemetery was platted in 1874, on three acres 
of land donated by S. G. Nolan on section 16. 

The first town meeting was on May 11, 1858, at the house of 
R. W. Mathews. John A. Mather was the moderator and Samuel 
Gowen was clerk. The officers to inaugurate the town govern- 
ment were: Supervisors, Lafayette Barlow, chairman, John A. 
Mather and E. S. Stafford; town clerk, F. Mathews; assessor, 
George W. Fox; collector, William Close; justices of the peace, 
J. M. Strunk and Josiah H. Gale; constables, Charles Birge and 
James Stevens. Town affairs from that time to this have been 
in good hands, and everything in this line has run on in the 
even tenor of its way. 


Walcott township is one of the southern tier of Rice county 
towns. Its contiguous surroundings are Richland on the east, 
Cannon City and Faribault on the north, Warsaw on the west 
and Steele county on the south. The principal river is Straight 


river, which Hows quite faithfully' toward the north, a little west 
of the center. .Mud creek and Rush creek, with several other 
branches, join it in its course. The river leaves the town from 
section 4, and a quarter of a mile west it returns, moving directly 
south to turn west and again getting beyond the town limits on 
ihe line between sections 5 and 6, passing through Faribault. 

On the east side is the noted East Prairie, with its black 
loam from eighteen inches to two feet in depth, with a blue 
clay subsoil, and laying so low that artificial drainage has to be 
resorted to. On the west side the soil is sandy, with a gravel 
subsoil on what is known as the low prairie, which extends west 
three-fourths of a mile, and north from the southern line about 
three and one-half miles. The rest of the town is known as High 
Prairie, which is a sort of table-land with a black loam and clay 
subsoil, making the richest kind of soil for any crops suitable to 
this latitude. 

The first actual settler in this town was Edward H. Cutts, 
who came from Vermont, having stopped a while at the head 
of Lake Pepin, in the year 1853. His first visit here was in 
December of that year, and he selected a claim in sections 20 
and 21. Late in February, 1854, he returned with Jacob Ches- 
rown, who was a young man, and another by the name of Rouse, 
who were hired by Mr. Cutts. They started from Hastings with 
a yoke of oxen, a cow and a pony, with supplies on a sled, and 
for the first day had a good man}' snowbanks to shovel through. 
When twelve miles out they lost the trail, and while looking 
right and left for it one of the men was sent on ahead to a piece 
of timber to build a fire and prepare supper. It was getting 
dark and they heard a pack of wolves coming. One of them 
seized the axe and the other got his pistol ready, but they crossed 
at a little distance, evidently on the track of a deer. The next 
day the ground got bare and the sledding was difficult. The 
next night the camp was on the prairie, and by picking up every 
stick they could find and using what they could spare of the 
ends of tin- sled slakes, they built quite a good fire. They also 
used up the hay, and in t he night the cattle took the back track 
and Mr. Cutts had to gallop back on the pony after them for 
five or six miles. In the morning they mixed up some meal in 
a handkerchief and baked a cake in the ashes. Before they 
reached Faribault the sled had to be abandoned and a wagon 
secured, with which Mr. Cutis finally got his things on his place 
and began to build. In a few days his cow had a calf, and one 
night a timber wolf undertook to carry it off, but Mr. Cutts 
drove tlie brute away and look the calf inside There came up 
a frightful snow storm, and as he had no shelter except the lee' 
side of the cabin, he had to take the cow in also until the storm 


had subsided. Mr. Cutts built the first log cabin in town and the 
first frame house. The first house was burned in the winter of 
1855-56. The next winter he went to get married, and brought 
his wife as far as Illinois and returned, having a serious time 
in getting through. When at last Mrs. Cutts came on he went 
to meet her in an ox cart, and she had to make a part of the 
journey on foot, stopping at that noted sod tavern, where they 
met Dr. Jewett, who had also been to meet his family. 

The town received a few settlers in 1853. Nathaniel Meyers, 
with his family, came and located on section 28. He was from 
New York. John Luther Cabot, a single man, also from New 
York, came at the same time. He was born in 1831, and 
remained here a few years, removing to Goodhue county. 

The spring of 1854 brought a few more venturesome indi- 
viduals, among whom should be noted Richmond Jones, of New 
York. Joseph Richard, also a New Yorker, came that year. 
George W. Marks secured a place in section 11. George Dor- 
rance, another native of the Empire state, settled in section 23. 

In 1855, attention having been called to this region, the town 
was well filled up, some of the claims having been entered the 
fall before. 

The town was named in honor of Samuel Walcott, from 
Alassachusetts, who was a very able, energetic and talented man. 
but after a time his mind became distraught, and he found an 
abiding place in an insane retreat in his native state. He was 
public spirited, liberal minded and with unbounded enthusiasm, 
and had he remained no one can predict what projects for the 
improvement of his adopted town he might have carried out. 

The first religious exercises were by Elder Crist, a Metho- 
dist minister, in 1855, in the spring, at a private house owned 
by Mr. Richardson, on section 32. An early birth was Laura E.. 
daughter of George and Hannah M. Dorrance, February 3, 1855. 
on section 22 in a log cabin. She was married on December 
14, 1878, and the following spring removed to Yellow Medicine 
county. The first marriage remembered was December 25, 1856. 
when Edward Beach and Elizabeth Beardsley were united in the 
bonds of wedlock. The first death was that of Mrs. Axta Jones, 
wife of Richmond Jones, who was struck by lightning on July 4. 
1854, while in their tent in section 29, in the presence of her 
husband, two children, her brother and John Luther Cabot. 

The following paragraph appeared in the St. Paul papers in 
November, 1878: "Intelligence has just reached here that a 
fanner, whose name could not be learned, residing near Walcott. 
a little station situated between Faribault and Medford, on the 
Iowa division of the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul railroad, 
had administered a lesson to two tramps, that by reason of its 


severity will never be appreciated by them in this world, but 
will have a wholesome effect in deterring others from attempting 
similar crimes. The two tramps above mentioned, under cover 
of darkness, entered a wheat field where a self-binding har- 
vester had been at work during the day, and deliberately piling 
the newly cut grain about the machine prepared to cremate both 
grain and harvester. Unfortunately for the success of their 
plans, the owner, whose suspicions had been aroused during the 
day, happened with a double-barreled shotgun just as they 
applied the torch, and with an impartiality which did him credit, 
gave each the contents of a barrel. Result, two dead tramps and 
a little damage to the grain. The farmer hurried to Faribault 
after the deed and gave himself up to the authorities, but instead 
of being detained was told to go back to his farm, and if another 
such attempt to destroy his property was made to serve the per- 
petrators in a like manner." 

The first railroad survey was made through the town in 1858, 
and grading began in 1859, but it was not until 1868 that the 
rumbling of the cars was first heard. The first blacksmith shop 
was erected in I860, on section 36, by Mr. McLaughlin, who 
wrought the plastic iron and steel for two years, when he packed 
up and went west. From the time when that fire went out the 
town had no son of Vulcan within its borders until 1881, 
when Mans Floom, a Norsk, started a forge in section 24. 

Samuel Livingston, from 1860 to 1867, was known as the 
"Walcott lime burner." He secured his rock from the very bed 
of the Straight river. E. S. Lord succeeded him, and he took 
the stone from the hank of the riser. 

A cheese factory was established in 1878 in section 1. The 
establishment was procured in Richland and moved here by 
William Mathers and worked by his son. 

The Straight River Grange was organized September 5, 1872, 
with seventy charter members. Its meetings were on Saturday 
evenings in a schoolhouse. and the organization kept up until 
1881, when it was finally disbanded. 

The Hunters of the Prairie. In 1860, a society with thi^ 
name was organized, and it was kept up for ten \ears. The first 
meeting was in the schoolhouse. when an organization was 
effected and officers chosen to lead in a war of extermination 
against the predatory animals in the vicinity, and a hunt was 
promptly instituted. Two captains chose their respective fol- 
lowers, and the whole community was thus divided into two 
elans. Everything was game, from a mouse up to the fiercest 
denizen of the forest. The trophies of the chase were the caudal 
appendages, and each had a value according to a pre-established 
scale, and the losing party had to pay certain prizes. In July a 


regular picnic, which went by the name of a "Gopher Picnic," 
was held, where men, women and children gathered to partici- 
pate in the sport, and after the contest was decided by counting 
the game, a dinner and other festivities were enjoyed. The num- 
ber of animals taken would run up into the thousands and these 
hunts were of great value in ridding the country of the swarming 

Redfield Old Settlers' Association. This society was organ- 
ized in the schoolhouse in 1858, meetings being held annually. All 
were admitted — men, women and children — regardless of age, 
that had come from the township of Redfield in New York state, 
and members were eligible from any portion of Rice county. 
In 1868 the last meeting of the society was held, the membership 
having dwindled down to ten. During their time of prosperity 
meetings were held at the residence of M. S. Seymour, on sec- 
tion 22. 

In 1856 Samuel Walcott, having contracted the prevailing 
epidemic which inspired so many to lay out villages and cities, 
proceeded to plat a village which was given the name of Wal- 
cott. The location involved parts of sections 20, 21 and 28 and 
29. There was nothing small about the plan, the proportions of 
which were magnificent, but it did not progress far enough to 
be recorded. But a single house was built, and that was for a 
hotel by Charles Smith. There was a steam sawmill with a 
twenty-five horsepower engine ready to cut lumber to build the 
prospective city. This was owned by E. H. Auldon and run for 
a while, but was subsequentlv taken down and carried to Shields- 

On November 21, 1861, Judge Isaac Woodman had a burial 
ground surveyed on section 8, a single acre, and divided into 
forty lots. The first burial here was Helena, a daughter of J. S. 
House, who died on March 2, 1860, at the age of two years and 
three months, a shocking and most horrible death. It seems that 
her mother was called out for a few minutes in the performance 
of her domestic duties, leaving the little girl tied into a high 
chair, which she upset directly upon the stove and was burned 
in such a terrible way that she survived but a few hours. 

Walcott, in the war of the rebellion, w-as well represented, 
there being twenty-four men who volunteered and who, strange 
to say, returned without a missing man. No draft in town was 
had, but the citizens voted at different times recruit bounties 
amounting in the aggregate to $4,800. In 1872 the town voted 
bonds to the amount of 32,000 to build a bridge across the 
Straight river at the Walcott mills. A bridge had existed at 
the mills, partly constructed by the proprietors and partly by the 
town, but it was washed away and the mill owners being dis- 


inclined to repair the damage so as to make it available for a 
road, the town had to rebuild it, which was done about twenty 
rods north of its old position at the mill. 

Pursuant to notice, the first town meeting for the election 
of officers and organization of the town was held at the house of 
Jacob Chesrown May 11, 1858. The moderator was Isaac Wood- 
man, and the clerk was Isaac R. Pentz. An assessment of $200 
was made for town expenses. What should constitute a lawful 
fence was agreed upon. It was voted that horses and cattle 
could run at large from November to the first of April and that 
sheep and hogs be prohibited from being at large. The second 
town meeting was held at the house of James Williams and was 
an adjourned meeting to elect officers, which was not accom- 
plished at the first meeting on account of other business. 

The town officers elected at this meeting were: Supervisors. 
Isaac Woodman, chairman; E. P. Jones and D. C. Hunkins: 
assessor, James Denison ; collector, Elijah Austin ; clerk. Isaac R. 
Pentz; justices of the peace, William Kester and George Dor- 
rance ; overseer of the poor, Isaac Woodman; constables, Jacob 
Chesrown and Charles B. Kingsbury. The first meeting of the 
supervisors was on May 22, at the house of the clerk, where the 
first division of road districts was made. The salary of the first 
clerk was $4.30 for the first year. At the first state election. 
in the fall of 1858, there were twenty-eight votes cast. Town 
affairs have been managed in an honest and economical way. 


Forest township is in the northwestern part of Rice county, 
and comprises the thirty-six sections of the congressional town- 
ship. It constitutes township 111, range 21 west, containing 
23,040 acres. The contiguous surroundings are Webster on the 
mirth. Wells on the south, Bridgewater on the east and Erin on 
the west. The town is made up of rolling land, interspersed with 
spots of prairie and natural meadow. There are no bluffs, and 
few hills that are too abrupt for agricultural purposes. When 
the township was originally settled the prairie spots were, as a 
rule, covered with patches of hazel brush, and here and there 
lay acres of natural meadow, seemingly prepared and waiting 
for the plow, This, however, has all been transformed into the 
richest and mosl fertile farms in the county. The soil is mostly 
a black loam with a clay subsoil. There is hardly any sand or 
limestone in the town, Good clear water can he obtained easily 
within from twelve to fifteen feet. 

There are a number of beautiful lake- nestling among the 
hills, which all abound with fish of various varieties, and because 


of the abundance of the finny species this locality was a favorite 
resort for the Indians in an early day, many pickerel, pike, bass, 
etc., being secured each season by the redskins. Circle lake is the 
principal and the largest one in the town. It is situated in the 
geographical center of the town, and takes its name from the fact 
that it makes a complete circle, leaving an island in the center 
of ninety-seven acres. Just south of this is Fox lake, embracing 
about 200 acres. Union lake extends into the town in the north- 
east corner, and infringes on section 2. Lake Mazaska floods 
about one-half of section 31, and a little lake with the cognomen 
of Mud nestles in section 11. There are also numerous small 
streams in the town. Originally, in sections 6 and 7, wild cran- 
berries abounded, and many of the early pioneers availed them- 
selves of this luxury, but of late years not much attention has 
been paid to them, and they have now become comparatively 
scarce. In 1856, from the northeast quarter of section 7, John 
W. and Joseph Thompson and Albert Fillmore took $780 worth 
of the berries. 

When the first explorers of this township made their appear- 
ance they found the hills and interspersed prairie spots covered 
with wild game and the wild aborigines. The timber land was 
a forest in the strictest sense of the word, and was almost im- 
penetrable, making the progress of the introducers of civilization 
very tedious and even dangerous. The actual settlement in the 
locality commenced in 1854, the honor of the first settlership 
being due to William Henderson, who arrived in October of that 
year, originally from Maine. He made his way on foot from 
St. Paul and made up his mind to avail himself of the oppor- 
tunity to take his pick of the fine farms in the township. This 
he did by locating in the northeastern part of the town on sec- 
tion 2, at the outlet of Union lake. He at once put up the frame 
of a small log shanty, and without completing it, remained to 
hunt and trap until he was frozen out, when he went to St. Paul 
to spend the winter. In the following spring he returned, bring- 
ing with him a small load of furniture, his wife and her sister, a 
maiden lady. He took the claim that he had selected and com- 
menced opening a farm. Here he remained for about five years, 
when he left for other localities. The next to cast his lot among 
the lakes and timbers of Forest was George Eaton, a young man 
of grit and enterprise, who arrived a couple of months later than 
Henderson and located on the southwest quarter of section 11. 
He put up a small hewn log hut and commenced trying to farm, 
but succeeded better at trapping. This, it will be seen, com- 
menced a settlement ; Henderson on section 2, at the outlet of 
Lake Union, and Eaton on section 11, one mile south. The next 
acquisition to the settlement was made early in 1855. in the per- 


sons of Mr. Hill, John Parker and William Palmer, who all 
located on or near section 9, one mile west of the places settled 
by Eaton and Henderson. Parker and Hill had brought their 
families with them, and they at once put up hewn log shanties. 
Hill brought in with him one horse, and the other two, Parker 
and Palmer, brought an ox team, in which each owned an 
interest. 1 he next comer was John W. Thompson, who had 
previously located in Hastings, but who after several visits to 
Forest township decided that he preferred Rice to Dakota county. 
He accordingly settled in section 8. 

In the meantime the settlers about the Union lake district 
had made themselves very comfortable, considering their cir- 
cumstances, and all were living principally on deer meat and 
other wild game. In this manner they spent the summer, a few 
of them having put in a few potatoes, rutabagoes, etc., and a rich 
harvest rewarded them. There were none, however, but opened 
and prepared sonic land for crop the following year. 

In the fall of that year (1854) a number of arrivals were 
marked on the corner stakes of claims. Leonard and Jacob 
Balyet, Joseph and Elijah Houck and John Craven came to- 
gether and all took claims near Millersburg, a little south of the 
settlement mentioned above. 

Zebulon Sargent and John Jones came shortly afterward and 
located in section 27. They, in common with the rest of the 
hardy pioneers, commenced Minnesota life in log huts. 

A few days after the arrival of the above parties there ap- 
peared three Norwegian families on the scene, fresh from the 
pioneer life in Wisconsin, and in covered wagons. As the season 
was getting late and they had their stock with them, they con- 
cluded to put Up hay to last through the winter before they 
erected cabins. This they did. and while they were at work in 
the hay field the wife of one of the emigrants was taken sick, and 
there, in the covered wagon, was delivered of a baby girl. Both 
mother and child lived and the girl grew to womanhood, was 
married and lived with her husband and a large family of 
children on the identical spot where the wagon stood when the 
birth occurred. This was the fust birth in the township. Early 
in 1856 Albert Fillmore and family, and the following week H. A. 
White, arrived and located near Millersburg, and after them 
came James Fitzimmons, who commenced laving plans for the 
village of Millersburg. At the same time should be chronicled 
the arrival of George and Milo J. Sellon, John Wood and E. F. 
Taylor, who were brought in by J. W. Thompson, and all took 
claims, most of them in the neighborhood of Millersburg. Au- 
gust and William Demann took places on section 20. In the 


fall their brother Christian made his appearance. Alexander 
Smith came in 1856 and settled in section 34. 

Frederick Fisher came from Milwaukee in the latter part of 
1856. He brought with him forty-one head of stock and two 
large wagon loads of furniture and goods. It being late in the 
season he decided to follow the example of the Norwegians in 
the fall before and put up hay for his stock before he erected a 
cabin, and afterwards put up a substantial log house. Here he 
lived for a number of years, but was very unfortunate in 
almost all of his undertakings. His wife was burned to death a 
few years after his arrival, by the explosion of a kerosene lamp — 
such a thing as a lamp being at that time a novelty and a curi- 
osity. He expended all of his means in a few years and removed. 
One incident connected with his early pioneering may prove of 
interest. He brought in with him a very large and fierce dog, 
and intended it for protection against the wild beasts. One noon, 
at the time when Fisher and his family were living in wagons and 
making hay, immediately after their arrival, they left the hay 
field and were at dinner when the dog went down to the field 
where a pack of wolves were heard howling and barking. From 
the high point where the wagons were, overlooking the meadow, 
the Fishers saw a fierce fight going on between wolves and 
dog, and by the time they got upon the ground all that was 
left of the dog was the shining skeleton, which had been picked 
clean by the voracious pack. 

The first death in the township was John Parker, who died in 
the fall of 1855. He was buried in solitude under an oak tree 
near the cabin where he lived in section 10. 

The town of Forest was not behind the neighboring towns in 
organizing and starting the local governmental wheels. The 
first meeting was held May 11, 1858, at the residence of James 
Fitzsimmons, and after organization the following officials were 
elected: Supervisors, Elias F. Taylor, Zebulon Sargent and 
Charles Brand ; clerk, Alexander Smith ; assessor, Joseph L. 
Houck ; justices of the peace, George Miller and John R. Bartlett ; 
constables, Milo J. Sellon and John W. Sargent; overseer of the 
poor, John Jones. The clerk of this meeting was J. F. Donald- 
son and S. A. Henderson was the moderator. 

In 1871 a postoffice with the name of Lester was established 
by J. W. Thompson on the southwest quarter of section 8. At 
one time it had the largest business of any country postoffice in 
Rice county. 


Warsaw township lies along the southern boundary of Rice 
county, being separated from the western boundary by one 



town. Its contiguous surroundings are Wells, Walcott and 
Morristown, with Steele county on the south. In the north- 
eastern part the city limits of Faribault embrace the north half 
of section 1, leaving 22,720 acres to comprise the area of the 
town. Of this about 2,000 acres are covered with water. The 
Cannon river winds its powerful course diagonally through the 
northwestern part of the town, entering from Morristown 
through section 18, and flowing northeasterly forms Cannon 
lake, and leaves the town by way of section 4 and enters Wells. 
McKenzie's creek, named in honor of Alexander McKenzie, an 
early settler, a stream of considerable importance, finds its source 
south of the town line and winds its tortuous way northward 
through the center of the town, until its waters mingle with 
those of Cannon lake. A small stream, with the non-sesthetic 
appellation of Mud creek, infringes on the southeast corner, and 
hastening its course through sections 35, 36 and 25, empties int 
Straight river, in Walcott township. Dry creek rises in Shields 
ville and flows through the northwest corner on its way to Can- 
non lake. The name this stream bears was evidently not given 
to characterize it. as the creek is scarcely ever dry. 

Cannon lake is the largest and most beautiful lake in Rice 
county and covers about 1.451 acres. It extends almost across 
the northwest quarter of the town, embracing portions of sec- 
tions 34. 7, 8. 9 and 10. It is about four miles long and from 
one-half to one mile in width, being about twenty-live feet deep 
at the utmost. The lake abounds with all local species of fish, 
and in early days this was made regular and oft-frequented hunt 
ing and fishing grounds of the Indians. Many of the old settlers 
ran call to mind occasions when there were as many as 200 
tepees on the shore of the lake, while the dusky skinned hunters 
were laving in winter supplies. The lake was originally named 
by the Indians "Te-ton-ka To-nah," or the Lake of the Village, 
and it bore this name- for a number of years. The stor) is told, 
and we give it as a legend, that after the name above given had 
been bestowed upon the lake by the Indians, a small colony of 
Frenchmen were driven by the redskins to the river, and the} 
took to ranges. The colonists had been prepared For emergency 
of this kind, and were supplied with firearms, besides having a 
small cannon in one of the canoes. They were not. however, 
aide to cope with their pursuers, and in attempting to pass the 
Cannon falls, the canoe containing the cannon became capsized 
and went to the bottom. Search was made, and the Indians 
became superstitious in regard to it, as the} were unable to find 
the slightest trace of the lost gun. Since thai time the river has 
always been known as Cannon river, and the lake being formed 
bv it took the same name. The soil of the town-hip i- mostly 


a dark loam, of about two feet deep, and a yellow clay subsoil 
of about four feet, beneath which is a clay of a bluish color. 
This pertains particularly to the timbered portions of the town. 
The prairie land is made up of a dark loam from eight inches to 
a foot in thickness, with a yellow clay subsoil, underneath which 
is a bed of gravel or sand. A report from this township, pub- 
lished in 1868, says : "The larger portion of Warsaw is prairie, 
with occasional groves in the southern and middle portion, and 
a heavy body of timber belonging to and a part of the Big 
Woods, on the Cannon river, in the northern part. It has within 
its limits 21,000 acres of taxable lands, exclusive of town lots. 
The Cannon lake occupies about 1,400 acres of the northern por- 
tion of its area. It has also 320 acres of school lands unsold, 
and one forty of railroad land. There is a considerable portion 
of the land of this town, owned by non-residents, that can be 
bought for from $5 to $25 per acre." 

The earliest settlement in this town took place in 1853, and 
when started its settlement was rapid and constant until all 
the government land within its borders was taken. When the 
first exploration by white men took place, it is impossible to 
state, as this had been the pathway and trading land of the 
Faribaults for years before the advent of actual settlers. The 
town being resplendent with natural advantages and beautifying 
works of nature, when once started the settlement became irre- 

Between 1826 and 1834 Alexander Faribault established a 
trading post at the foot of the lake now known as Cannon lake. 
In 1852 Faribault was in St. Paul on a trip for business pur- 
poses and met Peter Bush, a blacksmith, and hired him to go 
to Faribault and work. Mr. Bush was a Canadian Frenchman, 
and after considering the matter, decided to accept, and at once 
came to Faribault and became a resident of Rice county. He 
remained in Faribault the following winter, at work for Mr. 
Faribault. In the spring of the year following (1853) he de- 
cided to secure a claim and finally made his way into Warsaw 
and selected one of the finest farms in the county, on section 3, 
at the foot of Cannon lake. Here he remained for a number of 
years, and became prominent in the early settlement of the 
county. The same year as the above arrival, N. N. Graves made 
his appearance and secured a habitation one mile and a half west 
of Bush. This was the extent to which the town was settled 
this year, and the winter passed with but two settlers there. 

The next year, however, the beauties and advantages of the 
Cannon river country began to be heralded abroad, and the 
prospective settlers began to file in slowly, it is true, at first, 
but still civilization took a perceptible stride, and this year 


(1854) chronicled the arrival of Edward Hollister and Henry 
Davis, who came and located near the lake. About the same 
time came Peter Dalcour and planted his stakes on section 4. 
Thomas Blackborn was another who availed himself of the op- 
portunity and secured himself a habitation. He, however, only 
remained a few years, when he pulled up stakes and replanted 
them in the town of Morristown. 

In 1855 the arrivals were more numerous, and among them 
came J. B. Wait, to section 28. F. Weatherfield secured a claim 
in section 18, and was afterward one of the proprietors of War- 
saw village. Dr. Charles Jewett made his appearance and se- 
lected a claim on section 12, where he remained a few years and 
returned to New England, from whence he came. Thomas 
Sprague arrived in the town in 1854, and almost immediately 
retraced his steps to St. Paul for provisions, but taking sick on 
the road he died shortly after his arrival in the town. This 
occurred in the spring of 1855. and was the first death in War- 
saw. Others came in very rapidly, and a year from this time 
all the government land was taken. 

The first birth in Warsaw took place on November 24, 1854. 
being a son of Thomas and Desire Blackborn, and the child was 
named William H. The first marriage solemnized was on 
August 26, 1855; the contracting parties were Alexander Mc- 
Kenzie and Sarah Ann, eldest daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Elias 
Gilhousen. The affair took place at the residence of the bride's 
parents on section 7, the knot being tied by Charles Crump. 
Another early marriage was that of Peter Dalcour to Miss 
Lucia Woolett, on December 7, 1857. 

In 1858, at the organization, considerable difficulty was en- 
countered in naming the town. Dr. Charles Jewett, a prominent 
citizen, was present and insisted, and took the stump to declare, 
that he had a wealthy friend in Massachusetts by the name of 
Sargent, and if the citizens would name the town Sargent, he 
(Sargent) would move to the town and make it his future home, 
besides building a town hall and donating $500 to the public 
fund. As there was already a postoffice in the town named 
Warsaw, in honor of a town in New York, from whence a num- 
ber of the early settlers had come, it was but natural that a 
great many favored that name, but after listening to the appeals 
of Dr. Jewett, the feeling changed perceptibly, and upon the 
matter being put to a vote five ballots were found in favor of 
Warsaw and five times that number favoring the name of Sar- 
gent. It was accordingly declared to be Sargent township. 
This was the caption until 1864 when, as nothing had been seen 
or heard of the wealthy Sargent, the citizens of the town decided 


to re-name it, and accordingly had a bill passed by the legislature 
in 1864, changing the name from Sargent to Warsaw. 

Peter Dalcour, of whom mention has already been made, was 
not accustomed to frontier life, and could not get to understand 
the Indians. On one bright spring morning he discovered a 
number of the Indian ponies in the meadow destroying the hay 
and grass. He went down and tried to keep them off, but could 
not succeed, and getting excited he went to the house, got his 
rifle and coming back commenced blazing away at them. It 
was whiz, bang, and when he quit firing he had killed fifteen 
ponies and twenty-five dogs. The Indians did not resent this 
fearful slaughter, but the following spring one of them presented 
Dalcour with a huge butcher knife, and he said he supposed it 
was to pay for the destroyed hay, and as a token of future friend- 
ship and regard. This occurred on the farm of Peter Bush 
while Dalcour was working for him. 

In the spring of 1874, Jacob Steckner, while out hunting 
ducks, found the body of his father, John Steckner, at the foot 
of Cannon lake, in a condition that proved undoubtedly that he 
had been murdered. The deceased was a Pennsylvania German, 
aged about fifty-five years, and it was proven that he had left 
the Lake hotel and driven across the ice in company with an- 
other man, having about $30 in his pockets. This was the last 
seen of him until he was found silent in the arms of grim death. 
The head was battered in a horrible manner, and a club lying 
near by covered with the gore of the victim, proving, beyond a 
doubt that there had been foul play, but as no testimony could 
be brought forward sufficient to convict, the matter stil! remain- 
a mystery. 

Dr. Charles Jewett, who is prominently mentioned in con- 
nection with the pioneer life in this county, died April 3, 1879, 
at Norwich, Conn., at the age of three score years and twelve. 
His nativity was in Lisbon, Conn., September 5, 1807. He was 
educated at Plainfield, studied medicine and graduated, and 
began the practice of his profession in East Greenwich at the 
age of twenty-two. In 1830 he was married to Lucy A. Tracy. 
He early went into the temperance work and was the agent of 
the Massachusetts Temperance Union, and was the best known 
total abstinence advocate in New England. He afterwards lo- 
cated in Millbury, Mass., on a farm paid for by his temperance 
friends. Here he resided for five years, doing temperance work 
when wanted. In 1853 he went to Batavia, 111., where, in con- 
nection with other work, he lectured on physiology in a school, 
which did not prove to be a success, and, as himself and family 
suffered from chills and fever, he removed to Minnesota in the 
spring of 1855, locating in Warsaw, on section 12, and remained 


for three years, when he returned to Massachusetts, at the urgent 
invitation of the temperance people. A part of the time during 
the war he was a resident of Menasha, Wis., at work in the 
temperance cause. In 1873 lie removed to Norwich, Conn. He 
left a widow, four sons and two daughters. He was an earnest, 
amiable, talented and true-hearted man, respected and beloved 
by all. . 

Pursuant to a notice issued by the register of deeds of Rice 
county, a town meeting was held at the Turner house in the 
village of Warsaw, on May 11, 1858, for the purpose of organiz- 
ing the township and electing officers to guard public matters. 
There were in all eighty-two votes cast and the following were 
the officers elected: Supervisors, Miles Hollister, chairman; Au- 
gustus Johnson and D. W. Woodworth ; clerk, John McDonald : 
assessor, John Goldthwait ; collector, George W. Frink ; overseer 
of the poor, Philander Griffith; justices of the peace, J. F. 
Weatherhead and Charles Jewett, Jr ; constables, James O. Lamb 
and J. II. Maine. The temporary officers of this preliminary 
meeting were: J. F. Weatherhead, chairman; D. W. Woodworth, 
moderator, and Miles Hollister, clerk. The board, at their first 
meeting, voted the sum of $75 to defray town expenses during 
the ensuing year. Town matters in Warsaw have run along 
smoothly, the business of the public being in capable hands. 

It is a matter of pride to the inhabitants of Warsaw, and 
justly so, that during the war of the rebellion their quota was 
always filled without the necessity of force. True, one draft was 
made out, but the volunteers were furnished before it was 
enforced, and the town in one instance raised $300 to pay Charles 
Hagstrom to voluntarily enlist. There were, in all, forty-one 
volunteers, of whom four never returned, but found graves in 
southern soil, as follows: S. G. Randall, Edward Rible, Clark- 
Turner and Charles P. Hagstrom. 

The abandoned village of Lake City was the scene of the 
first settlement in the town, and played quite an important part 
in the early history of the county. It was the first village platted 
in the township. It had a beautiful location on section 3, at the 
foot of Cannon lake, in the northern part of the town. In 1853, 
early in the spring, Peter Bush came to the shores of Ca 
lake and pre-empted 160 acres in section 3. He at once put up 
a log habitation, 18x20 feet, and commenced making it his actual 
home. He shortly after put up a small shop, 18x20 feet, and 
being a practical blacksmith commenced working at his trade, 
rinse were the first buildings erected in either village or town 
ship. He hammered aw ;iv at his anvil, and in 1856 conceived the 
idea, and at once platted the village on his farm in section 3, and 
recorded it the same year as Lake City. Selling his shop t.> 


Frederick Roth in 1857, he went back to his birthplace in Can- 
ada. He remained away one year and then returned to his place 
and again took up the hammer and blacksmith tools, continuing 
work at his trade until 1880. George Burns arrived in 1855 and 
put up a hotel, with a saloon in connection, near Bush's black- 
smith establishment. He managed this until 1866, when he sold 
to Henry D. Kopps, who, after running it for two years, sold 
to Patrick Cuskelly, and he in turn, in 1869, sold the establish- 
ment to M. F. Depati. This gentleman erected a brick addi- 
tion, the size of which was 28x33 feet, two stories, at a cost 
of $2,500, and in 1880 sold it to his son, Moses F. Depati, for 
$3,000. In 1856, at the time of laying out the village, Joseph 
Cadory put up a two-story building for a saloon, and run it as 
such until 1859, when he sold the building to Peter Bush, who, 
with his family, occupied it as a dwelling. In the fall of 1856, 
a saw-mill was put up in the "Village of the Lake," by J. Bow- 
man, with a circular saw and a power of forty horse, making 
the capacity 1,500 feet per day. In 1857, the mill was destroyed 
by fire, the supposition being that it was the incendiary work 
of Indians ; and the ground was purchased by P. Melhorn and 
Enoch Woodman, who rebuilt the mill, and in connection with 
the saw they put in one run of stone, and commenced doing 
custom work for the surrounding neighborhood. In 1859, the 
mill became the property of P. Schuyler and Jared Patrick, who 
operated it until 1862, when it was sold to D. M. Lucris, and 
this gentleman removed it to Cordova. 


Cannon City township is one of the center towns of Rice 
county, lying in the second tier from the south and west county 
lines, and the smallest town in the county. Its immediate sur- 
roundings are, Bridgewater on the north ; Wheeling on the east ; 
Walcott and Faribault on the south ; and Wells and Faribault on 
the west. The city of Faribault takes from its southwest corner 
3,200 acres, or sections 29, 30, 31, 32 and the southern halves of 
sections 19 and 20. 

Here are found both timber and prairie land; the western 
portion abounding with timber, in places heavy and again light, 
and interspersed with meadow and timber openings. The eastern 
and northeastern parts, extending from the north to the south 
line of the town, is a rolling prairie, with here and there fine 
groves of timber. This is called East Prairie, for the reason that 
it lies east of the Cannon river timber. Little Prairie is a small 
prairie in and about section 4. The greater part of the town is 
under a high state of cultivation, and many of the oldest and 


finest farms in the county are located here. The soil is rich and 
well adapted to the crops and agricultural modes of to-day. A 
dark loam is the covering of the prairie, and as one approaches 
the timber a lighter nature of soil is visible, with a tendency to 
clay and sand. Along the Cannon river, which enters the town- 
ship from Faribault and crosses the western part in a northerly 
direction, the surface is more or less broken, and in some places 
enough so to be termed hilly, although there are few places so 
abrupt as to be detrimental to tillage. An abundance of excellent 
limestone is found in various localities in the western part of the 
town, and several have burned kilns with the most satisfactory 
results. It is also valuable for building purposes, for which it has 
been used quite extensively. 

The town is well watered, but has not as many lakes as some 
of the surrounding townships. Chrystal lake is the only one of 
note, and is located in the central part. Prairie creek rises in sec- 
tion 23, and taking a northern course hastens its way to North- 
field township, from whence it enters the county of Goodhue. 
The Cannon river has been mentioned as traversing the western 
part. Otto Falls creek, or, as it is generally known, Pond's creek, 
rises in Wheeling, and flowing westward, crosses the southern 
tier of towns and eventually becomes part of the Straight river. 
Several small streams traverse the northwestern part of the town- 
ship on their way to the Cannon river. 

There has been considerable question as to the actual first 
settlers of Cannon City township. It is possible that there were 
some arrivals in the latter months of 1853, but the first settler of 
whom we have any actual knowledge is John Corsett, a native of 
Ohio, who arrived in the spring of 1854, and took a claim in sec- 
tion 35. He built a little shanty covered with what he called 
"shakes," and at once commenced harvesting hay. succeeding in 
securing about twenty tons. After he had been there a short time 
a number of others swelled the settlement in this part of the 
township. All who arrived in 1854 were from Dunkirk. Wis., 
but most of them removed to other towns or counties. 

William N. Owens and family were natives of New York, 
having left the place of their nativity early in the forties and 
removed to Wisconsin. Here they remained for ten years, in 
Dunkirk, and in 1854. when the .Minnesota fever first began to 
find root in the minds of the Eastern people, they decided to 
join the throng. Among others who came also were Isaac Ham- 
lin and his parents. George Marks and his family. John Pratt 
and family. Samuel Howe. John Ralier. A. Renslow, and some 
who are mentioned elsewhere, who took claims in adjoining 
towns. These all started about the -ante time, and came strag 
gling along i'ii their way to the Cannon valley. When they 


reached the Root river, in Fillmore county, where Forestville 
now is, the typhoid fever attacked some members of Mr. Owens' 
family, and he was detained there some time, a child being born 
during this period. This, however, although it detained the 
family, did not hinder the balance of the party, and Mr. Owens 
with his oxen assisted the others to get into the country, his 
eldest coming up to drive one of the teams. The boy made an 
unfavorable report of the country to his parents, and they seri- 
ously entertained the thought of retracing their steps to the 
former home, but finally overcame their scruples and pushed on, 
arriving on East Prairie on October 1, 1854. They here found 
that those who had preceded them had failed in their agreement 
to select a good claim and cut hay for the detained party, and 
as they had four yoke of oxen, two cows, and one horse, they 
were obliged to secure hay or suffer severe loss. After looking 
about for a short time, Mr. Owens made Corsett, who is men- 
tioned above as having put up twenty tons of hay, an offer of 
$250 for his claim and hay, which offer was accepted, and Mr. 
Owens moved his family into Corsett's doorless and floorless 
cabin. This was soon remedied by making a floor out of slippery 
elm bark, and a door of slabs. The roof of the cabin was very 
poor, as it was made of clapboards, and Mr. Owens in later years 
declared that when he heard the children in the night crying, 
"Ma, Ma, it's snowin' in my face!" he determined to fix it, so he 
went out on the prairie, and cut sod and packed it in layers on 
the roof of his house. This remedied the evil for the time and 
kept the snow out of the children's faces, but when the spring 
came and the drenching rain washed crevices through the sod, 
great haste was required in shoveling it off the roof to prevent 
the shanty from being transformed into a mud hole. During the 
fall Mr. Owens broke two acres of the prairie, and later in the 
fall and through the winter he fenced eighty acres, this being the 
first fence put up in the township, also making at the same time, 
by night work, with a draw-knife, shingles enough to cover the 
houses of Samuel Howe, John Ralier, and his own, which were 
each 16x24 feet. After Corsett had sold his farm, as mentioned 
above, he took a claim in Walcott township, and finally found 
his way to Redwood county, where he died many years ago. 

About the time that Owens settled, a few more made their 
appearance, a party who were natives of Vermont having stopped 
for a time in Wisconsin, from whence they came direct. M. N. 
Pond and wife, and Prof. Ide, his father-in-law, with Airs. Ide 
and her two daughters, made up the party. They came direct to 
Faribault, with a yoke of oxen and a team of horses, following the 
trail of Thomas Sprague, who had settled in Warsaw, and arrived 
at their destination in due time, having lost the single wagon 


trail. They then started to East Prairie in search of farms. 
There was not a track through the timher nor a sign of civiliza- 
tion, and they were forced to tediously cut a pathway through 
the heavy and tangled woods. When they got to the prairie 
they found signs of some one's having already been on the 
ground, for on a stake, conspicuously planted, appeared the warn- 
ing words: "6,000 AcrEs of this land is claimed by TriPP, Boss 
& Co." To this, however, the pioneers paid no heed. Prof. Ide 
took a claim in section 35, where the village was later platted, 
while Mr. Pond secured a place in section 36, where he at once 
erected a hewn log hut, making shingles therefor with a draw- 
knife. Here Pond remained until the survey was made, which 
discovered to him that he was upon a school section, and he at 
once sold for $200 and removed to the timber in section 33, in 
which he took the southwest quarter and at once put up a bark 
shanty, peeling the bark from saplings, unrolling and nailing it 
to the posts he had prepared, making a shanty sixteen feet 
square. He moved into this in the spring of 1855. The winter of 
1855-56 was a very severe one, and as soon as the thermometer 
was put out the mercury would at once bob out of sight, while 
the anxious shiverer was still in doubt as to how cold it really 
was, and it became a standing joke that two thermometers must 
be tied together perpendicularly to find how cold it was; but it 
was an actual fact that for ninety days there was not a minute's 

A number of others came about the same time and increased 
the settlement in the southern part of the town, and many pushed 
their way over the line and took farms in Walcott. Among these 
were George Marks and Mr. Emerson. The latter first took a 
claim on East Prairie, but afterwards removed to Walcott, where 
he engaged in a mill. Oliver Tripp, a native of the state of New 
York, came August 15, 1854, and took possession of some of the 
prairie land in section 36. W. L. Ilerriman was another who 
came in 1854, arriving from Ohio in the fall of the year named 
and secured a claim a short distance north of the farms occupied 
by the parties above mentioned. He was a blacksmith by trade 
and assisted'in the early settlement of the village by starting the 
first blacksmith shop. Truman Boss came early in the fall of 
1854, and secured a place in section 22. John Thompson, a native 
of Scotland, arrived in Cannon City township in 1855, and as- 
sisted in the settlement of East Prairie and the village, by aiding 
in the erection of a steam and grist mill. M. C. Sweat, a native 
of Vermont, after stopping in Wisconsin for a time, made his 
appearance in the year 1854, and took a claim north of the East 
I'rairie settlement, in section 2i. Mr. Sweat was joined the fol- 
lowing year by a New Yorker in the person of H. C. Tripp, who 


with his family located on an adjoining farm in the same section. 
About the same time another native of the Empire state put in 
an appearance and joined his fellow New Yorker by purchasing 
a claim in section 25. This was E. B. Orcutt, of Oneida county, 
who having stopped for a time in Wisconsin, made his arrival in 
1855, with two yoke of oxen. Joseph Covert, of New York, came 
about the same time, and took a claim and lived over the line in 
the town of Wheeling. In 1868, he removed to section 25 of 
Cannon City, adjoining Mr. Orcutt's on the south. 

Still another came into this section this year — 1855 — in the 
person of Roswell Bryant, of New England, who, with his family, 
after stopping for a time in Indiana, made their way to Minne- 
sota and became identified with Cannon City township pioneer- 
ing by securing prairie land adjoining the places above men- 
tioned. H. A. Swarthout, of Pennsylvania, came two years later, 
in 1857, and purchased a farm in sections 26 and 27. 

In the meantime other parts of the township had begun evolu- 
tions toward civilization, although as yet the north and south 
portions were far apart in a social sense. Until the settlements 
grew so large as to merge together there was no intercourse 
between them. 

About the first to commence a settlement in the north part 
of the township was what was known as the Closson party, of 
Wisconsin. They consisted of Caleb Closson and his sons, J. 
Clark, Joseph, Amasa and Schuyler, who all took farms adjoin- 
ing, in the northeastern corner of the town, arriving late in the 
year 1854. They at once erected log houses and stables, as they 
had considerable stock with them. These were the most promi- 
nent pioneers in the northern part of the town, and the "Closson 
Settlement" is still often spoken of by the old pioneers. Section 5, 
a few miles west of this settlement, received an initiating settler 
soon afterward in the person of John Dungay, a native of Eng- 
land, who came from Chicago, where he had been working at 
the carpenter trade for several years, and secured a good farm 
in Cannon City township. He at once erected a comfortable 
house, sawing the lumber therefore with a whipsaw, also prepar- 
ing lumber and making probably the first wagon made in Rice 

Thomas Van Eaton, formerly of Wisconsin, made his appear- 
ance in the spring of 1855, and helped fill in the gap between 
the two settlers above mentioned by taking a farm in section 
three. He was afterward a preacher, and was finally murdered 
near Sauk Centre by the Indians during their outbreak, they 
cutting off his head and leaving his body lying in a slough. 
The ghastly, grinning skull rolled over the prairie for nine years 
before it was identified and buried. Messrs. Godfrey, father and 


son, secured farms in the northern part of the town in 1855, and 
moved on them the following year. Jesse Carr, a native of the 
Empire state, made his appearance the same spring, 1855, and 
preempted a farm in section four, where he began improvements 
at once. About the same time George A. Turner, of New York, 
arrived and took a place near Mr. Carr. 

Thus it will be seen that by the fall of 1855 the town had 
become pretty well settled and all parts had representatives in 
the pioneer line. Sears brothers had arrived and the village of 
Cannon City brought into existence, while Prairieville in the 
south, had made a very noticeable stride. A few more of the 
most prominent arrivals can be noted. F. Van Eaton came from 
Indiana in 1856, and secured a place in the northern part of the 
town. C. H. Mulliner, a native of New York State, came to 
Minnesota in 1855, and in 1856 secured a place in Cannon City 
township. O. B. Hawley arrived from New York State in 1856, 
and settled in section twenty-six, which his father, E. Hawley, 
had preempted the year previous. Mr. Hawley was chairman 
of the board of supervisors which organized the township in 
1858, which office he held for eight terms. John Jepson, one 
of the pioneers of Minnesota, arrived in 1856, and took a farm 
in section fourteen in Wheeling. He later moved to Cannon 
City and became prominently identified with the interests of 
the township. 

S. J. Clemens located in Warsaw in 1855, but finally moved 
to Cannon City township. Thomas Gallagher, of Emerald Isle 
nativity, secured a farm in section seven. F. Strunk, of the 
state of New York, came to Rice county in 1864, and in 1873 
formed a stock company under the title of Cannon City Mill 
Company, and erected a flouring mill on the Cannon river, in 
section eight. William Dunn was among the first settlers in 
the northern part of the town, coming about the latter part of 

1854. A German named Sherman came in at an early day in 

1855. Joseph Fancher, and J. and Elson Emerson, came from 
the East and settled on sections three and eleven. Thomas 
Bowles, or as he was familiarly known. Deacon Bowles, of 
Michigan, a brother-in-law of the Sears brothers, came to Cannon 
City in the spring of 1855, and took a farm near the village. 
He mortgaged his farm to some capitalists of Faribault, by which 
lie finally lost it. and in 1872, removed to Osakis. 

In 1854, when William \. ( )wens arrived in the southern part 
of the town, the particulars of which have already been noted, 
he broke two acres of prairie land which was the first sod turned 
for agricultural purposes in the town. He had settled on the old 
"Indian Trail," and the Indians in passing through from Red 
Wood to Wabasha, became a nuisance. The first thing they did 


after he had settled was to come to the farm and strike their 
teepees directly in front of his house, in a little grove which 
was there. This was more than the pioneer family could bear, 
and as soon as they were rid of them, Mr. Owens and his son 
repaired to the grove where they felled every tree and turned 
over the sod, so that the Indians, on their return, were forced 
to seek shelter in the timber half a mile west of the farm. On 
one occasion the redskins came to Mr. Owens' door for bread, 
and upon being handed a loaf laid down $2.50 in gold and refused 
to take it back or receive any change. Another time a new 
gun was left for a pan of flour. It was some time before the 
Indians could be taught what fences were made for, and in 
passing through the prairie land they would tear them down 
and march in bands directly through the growing grain and up 
to the house in childish ignorance that was very provoking, and 
Mr. Owens stationed one of his children at the point where 
they usually entered the field with instruction to lead them 
around the piece of grain. This finally taught them to be more 
careful, but they proved to be so bothersome that Mrs. Owens 
bethought a plan and carried it into successful execution that 
cured their propensity for laying around the house. She got 
her daughter, Amelia, to go to bed when she saw them coming, 
and then she would meet them at the door and blandly tell them 
"Mecosha Sharada," which means small-pox, and the redskins 
would leave quickly. This daughter, Amelia, grew to be a great 
favorite among the Indians, and many times the anxious mother 
feared they would abduct her. She finally sickened and died. 
For years afterward, the Indians, who had loved and petted the 
bright girl, would stop at Mr. Owens' door and enquire, "Pap- 
oose?" and on being told "Nepo" or dead, would go away 
sadly saying, "Too bad, too bad !" 

Rev. John Hoover, with his wife and three children, and his 
son-in-law, William Neel, came from Ohio, and arrived in Can- 
non City township in April, 1855. He found all the claims 
marked, mostly with the names of Tripp, Boss & Co., William 
Dunn, and Sears brothers, and not knowing that these persons 
had no right to claim such quantities of land, he purchased a 
farm of a man named Carr, who had settled on sections ten and 
eleven and was living in a little pole shanty, one-half of which 
constituted his stable, and the other half his dwelling. Mr. 
Hoover at once moved on the place and erected a log house, 
which he covered with a roof of four thicknesses of "shakes," 
thinking that would surely keep out the rain. The second 
night after this was put up there came a frightful storm, which 
they found to be about as severe in the house as out of doors, and 
to save his library the elder placed it under the bed, but notwith- 


standing this precaution, the water soaked through the bed 
and almost ruined his books. When Rev. Hoover was at 
Faribault, on his way to Cannon City, he was called upon 
to preach a funeral sermon over the body of an emigrant 
who had taken sick and died in an Indian hut in the place. 
Mr. Hoover protested that he could not, as he had nothing but 
his rough traveling clothes and could not appear in such unsuit- 
able garments. They insisted, however, and borrowed him a 
suit, in which he delivered the discourse to a congregation of two 
men and several women. This was on April 15, 1855. During 
the summer of the same year, Mr. Hoover posted up a notice 
that he would hold religious services on the shore of Crystal 
Lake, he being of the Methodist-Episcopal faith. Seats were 
made of logs and spread over the grounds here and there. 
Many well-attended and able meetings were held here at which 
Mr. Hoover officiated, and a Sunday school was organized. 

Rev. T. R. Cressey was probably the first and most prominent 
missionary of the Baptist faith in Rice county. He originally 
came from Ohio, living, for a time, at Hastings. In 1855, he came 
to Rice county, settled in Cannon City township and was promi- 
nent among religious circles, preaching the first sermon in the 
town. In 1862, he went into the army as chaplain and did 
valuable service. Returning after the close of the war, he 
remained a short time and removed to Des Moines, Iowa, where 
he died. 

Among the first marriages in the town was that of Elson 
Emerson to Charity Judd, at the residence of John Emerson, in 
1856 or 1857. Another was that of Mr. and Mrs. Kiekenoff. 

The first death occurred in the spring of 1855, and was Mrs. 
Warren, mother of Mrs. John Pratt, at the latter's residence in 
the southern part of the township. A coffin was made under 
the shade of a tree by M. N. Pond, from the boards of a wagon 
box, and was stained with a red wood cane. Her remains 
are now at rest in the Prairieville cemetery. A few weeks after 
this death, May 24, 1855, Amelia, a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. 
W. N. Owens, was taken away by death, and was buried in 
their garden, where the body remained until the burial ground 
was laid out. Rev. J. Hoover, of Cannon City, preached the 
funeral discourse. A man called "Doctor" died at the residence 
of Truman Boss in the fall of 1855. He had just soid his claim 
and contemplated going back to his eastern home, when death 
overtook him. 

Cannon City township was brought into existence for self- 
government shortly after the territory became a state, and 
the meeting for the purpose of organizing was held at the resi- 
dence of I. N. Sater, in Cannon City. .May 11, 1858. The meeting 


came to order upon call of I. N. Sater and officers pro. tern. 
were placed in charge of the meeting as follows: Chairman, 
Thomas Robinson ; moderator, Peter Chenneworth ; clerk, D. W. 
Albaugh. The meeting then took up the matter of township 
officers for the ensuing year, and elected the following: Super- 
visors, O. B. Hawley, chairman, Jesse Carr, and J. A. Starks; 
justice of the peace, William N. Owens; clerk, C. Smith House; 
assessor, J. D. Carr; constable, John Cusey. The first records 
of the township are in such condition that it is impossible to 
ascertain to a certainty who were the first officers, and the 
above are as near correct as we can determine. The name 
of Thomas Bowles also appears in the first record as making 
a motion to vote $200 to defray town expenses, which was 

This township voted sums at different times to pay bounties 
to volunteers who should fill the quota. August 8, 1864, an 
appropriation was made to pay $200 to each man who should 
offer to enlist before September 5, 1864, the vote on the question 
being 63 for and 17 against the proposition. January 21, 1865, 
another special town meeting was held for the purpose of 
levying a tax to pay bounties ; but this was defeated by a vote 
of 63 to 29. 


Erin township greatly resembles Forest and Shieldsvillc 
townships in general natural features, surface and scenery except 
for the fact that it has no lakes of any importance wholly within 
its borders, although many small streams traverse the valley to 
become affluents to the Cannon river. Tuft's lake on the south 
extends partially over sections thirty-four and thirty-five, form- 
ing the largest body of water in the township, while a small 
chain of lakes extend the sheet eastward and forms a southern 
boundary to section thirty-six. In the northern part of town 
Phelps' lake infringes on portions of sections five and six, 
entering from Wheatland; and one mile to the east a small 
body of water covers a few acres of land in section four. 
In the center of section ten is located a pond known as Logue 
lake, from which flows a small stream which wends its way- 
eastward to Circle lake in Forest township. Another small 
brook, which joins the one mentioned, rises in section twenty- 
five, and flowing northward completes the unison in section 

The soil is mostly a rich, dark loam, with, however, a 
frequent tendency to a lighter nature, and sand ; well adapted 
to the common crops of this latitude, and rich for all varieties 
of indigenous grasses for grazing. The entire town, with the 


exception of a few natural meadows, was originally forest, 
the noted body of timber known as the "Big Woods" claiming 
the greater portion of the territory. 

The earliest actual settlement of this sub-division of Rice 
county was commenced early in the year 1855. and was. there- 
fore, a little behind the majority of towns, as most of them 
received a settler or two in 1854. As the name of the town 
implies, there were none but the descendants of the Emerald 
Isle to be recorded in the pages of its early history ; and. in 
fact, for a number of years, until a good share of the govern- 
ment land was taken, there was not one resident of the town- 
ship of other than the Celtic origin. In fact, it is said, the 
arrival of pioneers of other nationalities, with a view to securing 
homes, was regarded by many of the citizens as an encroach- 
ment upon their rights and domain. 

In the spring of 1855 a party of pioneers from various 
directions reached the town, in the southeastern part, with the 
determination to secure homes and promote civilization. The 
balance of the county had already received a number of settlers. 
Faribault was quite a hamlet, and near it already was heard the 
sound of the water-wheel and the buzz of the saw ; but Erin 
was yet considered backwoods, and no pioneer had consented 
to accept the hardship, privation and toil the opening of the 
timber would necessarily cause. The first party to arrive con- 
sisted of Jeremiah Ilealy, Sylvester Smith, John Burke, James 
Cummings, John McManus and Owen Farley, most of them 
bringing their families. 

About the first of this party to locate and select a claim 
was Jeremiah Healy. He located in the southern part of the 
township and put up a log shanty, 16x24 feet, the first in the 
township. After Ilealy had located, Sylvester Smith was next 
to select a place, which he did in sections twenty-live and thirty- 
six. He was a native of Ireland and had stopped for a time 
in Iowa, getting into Rice county with a yoke of oxen and im- 
mediately erecting a small log shanty. Soon after his arrival 
he managed to secure a grindstone, and for a number of 
years the settlers for six miles around would come to his place 
to sharpen their knives and farming cutlery. He also was for- 
tunate enough to secure the first grain cradle in the town 
ship. When he first arrived with his family, consisting of his 
wife and two children, there were only three houses between 
his place and Faribault. John Burke planted his stakes on 
the claim of his choice, but only remained for a few years. 
James Cummings next secured a place on section twenty-seven 
and put up a small log shanty at once. John McManus. a single 
man, took a claim in the southern part • •!" the town, near his 


fellow countrymen. He was joined in wedlock shortly afterward, 
making one of the first marriages in the town. 

The last member of this party, Owen Farley, settled on sec- 
tion twenty-six. This entire party came in with ox teams and 
all settled in the south and southeastern part of the township. 

In the same year, a little later in the season, the southwestern 
corner of the town received a settler and commenced building 
up a neighborhood as efficiently as the southeastern part. James 
McBride settled on section thirty-one. He brought in consider- 
able stock and commenced pioneer life by putting up a log 
shanty. Shortly after McBride arrived in the fall, E. darken 
located on section thirty. This was the extent to which the 
township was settled this year, carrying the settlement up to 
the winter of 1855-56, which proved a very trying and severe 
one to the meagre settlement, as they, as yet, had had no time 
to prepare for it. A Mr. Condon was frozen to death while 
on his way to his claim near J. Cumming's place. He had 
gone to Shieldsville for groceries and provisions to supply the 
wants of his family, and on his way home lost the road, became 
discouraged and benumbed by cold, and gave up to the drowsi- 
ness which in freezing means death. This misfortune was the 
third death that occurred in the township. Many of the settlers, 
however, anticipating a hard time, had avoided the danger by 
going to St. Paul for the winter, and returning the following 

The next year the settlement became more rapid and all 
parts of the town received a share of the incomers. Charles 
McBride arrived in 1856, and located on sections nine and six- 
teen. Andrew Kelly located in section twenty-six. He came in 
company with his brother, Frank Kelly, who took a quarter 
section adjoining his farm. Frank was married at an early 
day, and lived here until about 1862, when he mysteriously 
disappeared. D. and John Calihan came in 1856. J. O'Reilly 
and father came about the same time. Thomas and Peter Ash, 
brothers, also arrived at about the same time. Section thirty- 
three, in the southern part of the town, was the recipient of 
T. Flannagan, and about the same time of the year 1856, Henry 
Smith secured a home in section twenty-seven. Four Mulcahy 
brothers, Patrick, Timothy, Daniel and Dennis, natives of the 
Emerald Isle, put in an appearance this year and took farms 
near together, on and about section twenty-nine. The first two, 
Patrick and Timothy, died at an early day ; Dennis removed to 
Wells township about 1867. In section eight, the same year. 
Edward P. Carroll took the northeast, and Patrick Sheehan 
secured the southwest quarter. Just south of these parties, in 


section seventeen, B. Foley and Andrew Devereux each secured 
160 acres. 

John Doyle, originally from Ireland, settled on an eighty- 
acre piece of land in the southern part of section five. Hugh 
and Patrick McEntree, father and son, came in 1856, and the 
former took a farm in section twenty-four. Later Patrick mar- 
ried and purchased a place in section ten. E. Kiernan pre-empted 
a place in 1856. There were many arrivals this year besides 
those noted already, among which may be mentioned John 
Gorham, who remained on his farm until 1870 when he removed 
to Faribault; the O'Sullivan brothers, Patrick, John and James; 
James Warren, who died in 1873 ; Dennis Dooley, Michael Rich- 
ardson, Charles Maguire, M. Kallaher, John Ouinlan, E. Maht-r 
and T. McBreen, all of whom settled this year. 

This carries the settlement up to the time when the influx 
became so rapid and constant that it is impossible to note the 
settlers in sequence. In 1860 the population of Erin had grown 
to 306, and almost all of the government land was taken. It 
should be noted in this connection that General J. Shields had 
a great deal of influence in developing this township, and especi- 
ally can the tide of Irish incomers be attributed to him, as he 
had located just on the line dividing this town from Shields- 
ville, and his advertisements in eastern papers inviting others 
to join him, attracted the attention of his countrymen, and 
they thronged in. A great many of the claims occupied by the 
settlers mentioned above, had been selected before the parties 
had arrived, by Jeremiah Healy, who was the first to actually 
secure a farm. By observation, he had picked up the rudi- 
ments of surveying and his knowledge was very useful to the 
pioneers in laying out their future homes. There have been 
as many as sixteen or twenty of them, in early days, stopping 
at Mr. Healy 's log cabin — free of charge — while they were 
looking for farms. 

The first child born in the township was a daughter of Mr. 
and Mrs. Jeremiah Healy, in the latter part of 1855, in the south- 
ern part of the town. The child was christened Sarah, and she 
afterwards married John Dudley. The next event of this kind 
was in 1856, when a child named Catherine was born to Mr. 
and Mrs. John Burke. Another early birth was James, a son of 
Mr. and Mrs. E. Clarken. Mathew Smith was born in Erin 
at an early day. 

In the line of marriages the township has a peculiar history, 
one, in fact, which is almost without a parallel. It is. that from 
the original settlement of the town up to 1878, only one marriage 
took place within the limits of the town. On the occasion George 
Levoy and Annie Berry were united by Father Robierric. Tin 


bride was the daughter of John Berry. The first marriage of 
residents in the town occurred in the winter of 1856, at Faribault, 
and were John Quinland and Bridget Martin. The ceremony 
was performed by Father Ravoux. 

As early as 1857, the marriage of Mr. John McManus to 
Eliza Kelly took place at the village of Shieldsville. Another 
early marriage was that of Thomas Casey to Catherine Kelly. 

Undoubtedly the first death to occur in Erin was Mary Ann, 
child of Sylvester Smith, October, 1855. She was buried in 
Shieldsville. This child's grandfather, Martin Smith, father 
of Sylvester Smith, died in 1855, at the age of sixty-five years. 
His remains were also interred at Shieldsville. The next death 
was Mr. Condon, in the early part of 1856, by freezing. He is 
mentioned elsewhere. In 1858, while Edward Riley and Syl- 
vester Smith were in the timber chopping wood, a limb from 
one of the trees fell and, striking Edward Riley on the head, 
killed him instantly. 

When Sylvester Smith first came to the town in company 
with a few others, in 1855, they made their way with ox teams 
through the timber, having to cut their own roads. Their 
nearest places for supplies were Hastings or St. Paul. In 1856, 
they broke a little ground and put in and raised a small crop 
of corn and potatoes. The first crop of wheat was raised in 
1857, and it was marketed at Hastings at 50 cents per bushel, 
the trip being made with ox teams, and occupying five days, 
camping on the way and cooking their meals by the wayside. 

The first precinct election ever held, embracing Erin, was 
held at Shieldsville in 1855 ; the precinct comprising what is now 
known as Erin, Shieldsville, Wheatland and part of the towns 
of Forest and Wells. 

The town of Erin was first settled in the month of May, 
1855, and among the first to build a log cabin was Jeremiah 
Healy who, amidst the trials and privations of pioneer life, 
had succeeded in preserving a few seed potatoes and planted 
them near his cabin. Soon afterward, Father Ravoux, the first 
missionary in this part of the country, came traveling along ort 
his Indian pony, and discovering this cabin with the inmates 
and a few scattering neighbors, he concluded to stop and hold 
the first service here. 

This town was organized in common with the balance of the 
townships in Rice county, when the territory was made a state. 
The first town meeting was held on May 11, 1858, at the resi- 
dence of P. Ryan. The meeting was called to order by the elec- 
tion of Thomas Flannagan as chairman, and William Kerrott, 
secretary. A motion was then made by D. Dooley to name 
the town "McBride," then one to call it "Healy" in honor of 


Jeremiah Healy, but both of these were lost. A motion was 
next made by Mr. John Gorman that the township should be 
called Erin in honor of their nativity, and this was carried 
by a majority of seven. They then proceeded to the election 
of the following officers : Supervisors, John Conniff, chairman ; 
Timothy Foley, and Sylvester Smith ; assessor, Dennis Dooley ; 
collector, John Gorman ; justices of the peace, Thomas Flannagan 
and B. Foley ; constables, Michael Richardson and John Smith ; 
overseer of the poor, Charles McBride; overseers of roads, 
Patrick Ryan, Martin Duffy and Edward Clarken. 

A history of the Bohemian settlement in the northern part 
of the township is found elsewhere. 


Morristown township is the southwestern corner township 
of Rice county, being contiguous to the counties of LeSueur 
and Waseca on the west and south and with the towns of 
Shieldsville and Warsaw on the north and west. It is com- 
prised of thirty-six sections, or 23,040 acres of which 20,503 
exclusive of town lots, are taxable lands; 900 are covered by 
its lakes, and a large part of the balance is under a high state 
of cultivation. 

The Cannon river crosses the township from west to east, 
and seemingly divides the different classes of land, as all the 
territory north of the river was originally covered with timber 
of common varieties, while that to the south is principally 
prairie land interspersed with fine groves of timber, combining 
to make a beautiful and picturesque country, which, in connec- 
tion with its fine soil, excellent water and water power, soon 
attracted the attention of those seeking homes. The soil is 
mostly dark loam, with a blue clay subsoil, this applying particu- 
larly to the prairie, while in the original timber districts a tend- 
ency to sandiness is visible, with a subsoil of clay or gravel. 

The township is abundantly watered by rivers, creeks, and 
lakes. The Cannon river has been mentioned above. It enters 
the town in the form of Lake Sakata. which it forms in sections 
nineteen and twenty. A mineral spring bubbles up on the 
south side of this lake, which pnssescs medical qualities. 
Sprague lake is a small body of water covering portions of sec- 
tions twenty-eight and twenty-nine. l'at's lake lies nestled 
in the midst of the timber in the northeastern part of the town. 
Mormon lake, so-called because in an early day the Mormons 
used it for baptismal purposes, occupies a few acres in the 
southwestern part of section twelve: while I'.onesctt lake i^ 
located just north of it. Devil's creek ri^e^ in Mud lake, in 


Shieldsville, and flowing southward, is joined by several small 
streams before it joins Cannon river. Dixon's creek finds its 
source south of the boundary, and wending a northern course 
mingles its waters with those of the Cannon in section twenty- 
three. Horseshoe lake infringes on the town in the northwestern 
part, and is the source of a small stream which connects it to 
Cannon river by way of sections eighteen and seventeen. 

The earliest settlement was made in the fall of 1853, when 
John Lynch and Henry Masters came from St. Paul in a buggy, 
and on reaching the town, determined to stay, and erected a 
log house, taking claims in sections twenty-three and twenty- 
four, just east of where the village now is. Masters was a native 
of Illinois, and the following spring returned to his old home 
and brought back a team. In January, 1855, he was joined in 
wedlock to Anna Randall, by Walter Morris, this being the 
first marriage in the township. He remained until 1865. 

Shortly after the settlement of Messrs. Lynch and Masters, 
in the spring of 1854, Andrew Story with his wife Mary E., and 
son Charles, four months old, made their appearance, Mrs. Story 
being the first white woman to set foot in the town, and took 
a claim in section twenty-two, just west of the settlement above 
mentioned. August 21, 1855, a child was born to Mr. and Mrs. 
Story, the first in the town ; it was christened Elbe. The Story 
family remained in Morristown until 1862, when the}' removed 
to Kansas. 

During the month of August, 1854, William and Bartemus 
K. Soule, brothers of Mrs. Story, came on from the East and 
selected claims south of Mr. Story's place. William took a farm 
in section twenty-three, but was too young to hold it and was 
bought out by Mr. Morris in the spring of 1855. He then went 
to section thirty-three. His brother took a claim in section 
thirty-four and remained there until 1861, when he enlisted and 
went to the war; returning he settled in Chippewa count}-, Min- 

In the month of September, 1854, three brothers named Ben- 
son, Marshal, John and C. M., natives of Vermont, having 
stopped for a time in Indiana, arrived in the township. Marshal 
secured a home in section twenty-one, where he remained until 
1865. John located in the southwest quarter of the same section 
and remained on it for ten years. C. M. secured a place on 
section twenty-three, but as he was too young to hold it, some 
one jumped the place, and in 1855, he took a farm in section 

An incident in connection with the settlement of the Benson 
brothers is worthy of notice. A man by the name of Drake, 
sometime during the summer of 1855, at the place now known 


as Waterville, thought he would be able to divert the travel from 
the present site of Morristown by constructing a road south 
of the old Indian trail. About the time he had completed his 
road, the Bensons went to work and constructed a good wagon 
road along the old Indian trail, and Drake's road was left un- 
traveled. The Benson road was probably the first improved 
highway in the county. 

The following spring the Messrs. Morris located on section 
twenty-three, and the village of Morristown was brought into 
existence. They were followed by Robert Pope, a native of 
Canada, who made a claim on section twenty-nine, where he 
remained until 1857, when he joined his amative Mormon breth- 
ren in Utah. Mr. Wilson soon after made himself a habitation in 
section thirty, where he remained until 1866, and left. Joseph 
Ladoux, of France, joined him and took a quarter section num- 
ber thirty, where he died in 1856, and his family in 1857 went to 

David Springer and family also came early in 1855, and 
took a habitation in section twenty-three, remaining there for a 
year, and then returned to Pennsylvania, his native state. Joseph 
Dixon and family, in company with his father-in-law, made their 
appearance about the same time. Their child, Clarissa Dixon, 
born on August 24, 1855, in John Lynch's cabin, was the second 
white child born in the township. 

Others came and have since gone, and the influx became so 
great that it is almost impossible to note them. The prairie 
was taken very rapidly, and in 1857 but few farms of much 
value were left in the timber. 

Jonathan Morris was an early pioneer and important person- 
age in the early history of the township bearing his family name. 

Morristown effected an organization in 1858, the first town- 
ship meeting being held on May 11. of that year, at the Dela- 
ware house. After the usual preliminaries, James R. Davidson 
was appointed moderator and William P. Heydon, clerk. The 
meeting then proceeded to the election of town officials for the 
ensuing year, resulting as follows: Supervisors, Isaac Hammond, 
chairman ; Henry Bassett and John D. Benson ; clerk, Charles 
D. Adams; assessor, John S. Pope; collector, D. G. Wilkins; 
overseer of the poor, Reuben Morris; justices of the peace, 
Walter Morris and Willard Eddy; constables, William P. Hey- 
don and Samuel Clark; overseer of roads, O. K. Iloglc and 
Nathan Morris. All of these officers qualified except Samuel 
Clark and John S. Pope, but their places were soon filled. 

On August 24, 1864, bonds wen- voted at a special meeting 
to pay the sum of $25 to each man who would volunteer to 
enlist in the army under the President's call for 500,000 men ; 


the bonds to bear 12 per cent interest. The proposition carried 
by a vote of 58 for, to 7 against ; the committee men were, C. D. 
Adams, T. McClay and Isaac Pope. 

February 9, 1865, a special meeting was held at which it was 
voted that bonds to the amount of $300 should be issued to each 
man who would volunteer to enlist, and fill the quota. This was 
under the President's call for 300,000 men. This supplied the 
deficiency and no draft was made. 


Northfield township is situated in the extreme northwestern 
portion of Rice county, adjoining Dakota county on the north, 
Goodhue county on the east, and contiguous to the townships 
of Bridgewater and Wheeling on the west and south; embracing 
as its area, including the city of Northfield, forty-four sections 
of land, or 28,160 acres, almost all of which is under a high 
state of cultivation, and admirably adapted to all agricultural 

The surface of the township is varied and diversified. It is 
really a prairie town, smooth in places, but everywhere is notice- 
able the rolling tendency. As one approaches the eastern line, 
along Prairie creek, the land is more broken and hilly, covered 
with a heavy growth of timber. Here are many ledges of barren 
rock extending along the line of timber and prairie where it 
breaks its surface to make room for the stream. Along the en- 
tire western and southern boundaries the surface is more broken 
and hilly, and retreating from these is the prairie land which is 
undulating and beautiful. The soil on the prairie is a dark, 
rich loam, and in the timber, or in the hilly land, it is of a 
lighter color. The "Big woods," so-called, originally crossed 
sections twenty-six and thirty-four. 

There are only two streams of any note passing over the sur- 
face of this sub-division, the Cannon river, passing through the 
city of Northfield, and Prairie creek. The latter rises in Cannon 
City, enters Northfield at the extreme southwestern point, and 
flows through the southern tier of towns until it reaches the 
northwestern part of section 34, where it is joined by another 
small stream, and makes a northward turn, keeping this direc- 
tion, with a little inclination to the west, until it reaches section 
rises in section thirty-six and flows northward through the 
eastern tier of sections until it joins the more powerful stream. 

This sub-division of Rice county commenced its era of pio- 
neering in 1854, about the same time as did almost all of the 
prairie towns. The first to come into the township and actually 
settle and take a farm was D. Kirkendahl, or, as it is sometimes 


spelled, "Kuykendahl," who was a native of Germany, but came 
here from Pennsylvania. He took a farm just where part of the 
city now is, and commenced western life in a tent where the 
college buildings now are, and where, in a few weeks he put 
up a log cabin. His selling out to Mr. North and leaving is noted 
in the history of the city. 

Mr. Kirkendahl had been there just twelve days when Alex- 
ander Stewart made his appearance. He was a native of New 
York, having stopped for a time in Wisconsin, which latter 
place he left on May 16, and arrived in Northfield on June 16, 
1854, finding Kirkendahl safely, but temporarily, housed in his 
tent. Mr. Stewart brought his family, and all he had in the 
world, which consisted of three pair of oxen, four cows and some 
loose cattle, besides the usual household articles. A tent was 
pitched in which he lived four weeks while he did some break- 
ing and preparing land, and then he erected a log shanty, 14x18 
feet. This he covered with a half roof of shakes, the remaining 
half being open for two months. No floor was put in, and in 
this shape the family moved into their new home and remained 
there until after the fall work was finished. Then Mr. Stewart 
went to St. Paul and procured some lumber with which he 
made some badly needed repairs. Shakes of black oak were 
brought into use to make a good roof, which was covered with 
sod, and this sheltered the inmates for nearly two years when, 
on the occasion upon which Elder T. R. Cressey, the pioneer 
Baptist minister, was a guest of Mr. Stewart's, a heavy rain 
storm came up and speedily made mush of the sod which had be- 
come rotten and soon transformed the little cabin into a mud 
pile. This made it painfully apparent that there was still room 
for improvement, which was speedily furnished and afterwards 
a pleasant and neat dwelling was erected to take the place of the 

This little commencement was the basis upon which grew 
the entire northern settlement of the city and township. Two 
weeks after Mr. Stew art's arrival, Jonathan Alexander and family 
made their appearance and selected a farm. He brought con- 
siderable stock, about ten cows and ten head of loose cattle, 
one horse, and was well fixed with this world's goods. A 
tent was pitched which served as shelter while a good shanty 
was erected; this was conducted as a hotel and tavern, or an 
old-fashioned inn, from the time of its erection for a number 
of years, and many a weary traveler has here found shelter. 
.Mr. Alexander has one son who took a farm as early if not 
b( fore the father. 

J. D. Hoskins and 1 [enry Trade were about the next to arrive. 
Iloskins was a native of tin state oi Maine. Trade was a native 


of Germany and took a farm which he sold in 1855 to C. N. 
Stewart. This was about the extent to which the northern 
part of the town was settled this year, and carried it up to the 
winter of 1854-55, which was a very mild one and the settlers 
experienced no trouble in getting through in safety. In the 
meantime, and before cold weather had actually set in, another 
native of Germany had arrived and settled south of this little 
neighborhood, in the person of Frank Frahnkoop. 

In 1855, the immigration actually set in and as many of the 
arrivals as can be remembered will be given here. John S. Way, 
whose nativity dates in Caledonia county, Vermont, came 
through this township from St. Paul, where he had arrived in 
May, and reached Northfield in June, 1855. He put up some 
hay and in September secured a claim in section seven, and 
put up a log house. 

Next among the arrivals in the spring of 1855 are noted the 
names of C. F. Whittier, who now lives in Northfield, John 
Bingham, the White brothers, H. H. Merrie, T. H. Olin, Syl- 
vanus Bunday, who took land in section eleven ; Ransom and 
George Smith, brothers just from Ohio; J. W. North, and W. W. 
and James Willis, also from Ohio. After this the settlement 
was carried on so rapidly that it is impossible to trace it in 
sequence. The city of Northfield was commenced, and although 
slowly at first, gained steadily. Since the time mentioned and 
on various dates, the following are a few of those who have 
arrived and helped to fill the northern part of the town: Daniel 
Goodhue, P. Tosney, S. V. Ward, Thos. Lawler, James Lynn, 
the Bundays, Duncan Ferguson, Thomas De Lancey, Colville 
Carlaw, Wells Blackman, John Miller, B. F. Woodman, Thomas 
Wilson, Charles S. Martin, J. C. Couper, W. R. Green, C. W. 
Lyman, E. Spear, Culver Hibbard, John Riddell, John Law. 
A. T. Barrows, S. M. Persons, Benjamin Ogden, Nels Wood- 
worth, G. Bacon, W. N. Woodsworth, Franklin Kelly, etc., etc. 

In the meantime a settlement had been started and was 
growing rapidly in the southern part of the township. About 
the first to come and select a claim was J. D. Jones, a Scotchman, 
who had stopped for about ten years in Wisconsin, and who 
arrived in the township in the spring of 1855. He made his 
way to East Prairie and took a farm in section thirty-five on 
Prairie creek, and found that he had arrived just about the same 
time as a party of Norwegians who will be mentioned hereafter. 
He erected a small shanty and returned to Milwaukee, where he 
remained for a time but subsequently came back to his claim. 

In the same spring, 1855, a party of Germans made their 
way into the township and became domiciled. Gottlieb Pray, 
or as it is sometimes spelled, "Prehn," F. Sommers, Mr. Crintz, 


and Gottlieb Lackel, were members of the party. Gottlieb Pray 
(or Prehn) took a farm in section twenty-two, where he dug 
a hole in the side of a hill and commenced pioneer life. Soon 
afterward a log house was erected, and he lived on his place 
about fourteen years when he went to Illinois where he died. 

F. Sommers secured a home in section ten, and put up a 
little shanty covered with dirt. Mr. Crintz took the farm in sec- 
tion sixteen, where he erected a house and lived until the time 
of his death, which occurred in 1875. His first team consisted 
of a couple of milch cows. Gottlieb Lackel made a pre-emption 
in section seventeen, and after living there a few years went to 
Cannon City, and from there to Faribault. All of these men 
had their families with them. 

T. H. Olin also arrived this year, being a native of New 
York. He made a claim and, as he was afraid some one might 
jump it, he placed a man named Sanford upon it to comply 
with the statutes, so it would be safe. Sanford proved to be 
a treacherous fellow, and after he had been on the place a short 
time began to consider it his, and when Mr. Olin returned from 
an eastward trip to claim the land he had selected, Sanford 
pretended not to recognize him, and although he had been paid 
for attending it he refused to give it up. As Mr. Olin was a lover 
of peace, rather than make trouble he went several miles north 
and purchased a claim. Olin had put up, at a cost of $100, one of 
the first houses in the township on this land, hauling the lumber 
from Hastings, and to be cheated out of the whole thing was 
a severe blow financially. Sanford, after six or seven months, 
sold his claim to Mr. Thorpe for $600, and went to Hastings 
where all of his money was stolen from him and he and his 
family commenced working their way eastward. He, during his 
stay, had made considerable money by locating parties on land, 
but, after E. L. Fuller arrived, a town plat was secured and this 
work was done free of charge. 

On May 24, 1856, E. L. Fuller, a native of the Empire state, 
made his appearance with his family, some stock and household 
goods and took a claim in sections twenty-two and twenty- 
seven. The first thing he did was to pitch a tent, in which 
he lived until his log house was erected. Charles Ferrall, a 
native of New York, and a man from Wisconsin, Richmond 
Clinton, came at the same time, the former took land in section 
twenty-seven, where he remained four years, and after spending 
a short time in Northfield finally found his way back to his 
native state. Richmond Clinton secured a home adjoining sec- 
tion twenty-two and remained there until his death, which oc- 
curred in April. 1864. 

In June, 1856, J. D. Jones, who is mentioned above, returned 


to the township, having spent some time in Milwaukee, and 
commenced boarding with Mr. Fuller's family, as he was a single 
man, while he did his breaking. 

George and William Thorpe, of Vermont, arrived on July 4, 
1856, and celebrated the day by taking farms north of Mr. Jones. 
One of them purchased Olin's farm of Sanford. John Dixon, 
from Michigan, came about the same time and pre-empted 
the northwest quarter of section twenty-eight, and lived on it for 
six years. He erected a log house, and his wife taught school, 
but he finally returned to Michigan from whence he came. 

About the next to come in and take a home was Lambert 
Watts and family, from Vermont, who made their way with a 
team of horses and settled on the northeast quarter of section 
twenty-seven. William Ross and family, from Pennsylvania, 
arrived about this time, the whole party being on foot. They 
settled on a farm in section twenty-one, and the family held 
the claim while the father and son went out to work until they 
had earned enough to buy a team. They remained on the place 
for fifteen or sixteen years, until they became in comfortable 
circumstances, and then removed westward. 

In the fall of 1857, Philip Miller and family, wife and two 
children, Germans, drove into the township behind a team com- 
posed of one ox and a cow, and an old-fashioned home-made 
wagon with wheels without tires. They first settled in section 
fifteen where they remained for a number of years and then 
purchased a valuable farm in section twenty-one. The same 
year a man named Gregory came and settled, but has since gone. 
A man whose name is forgotten, came early and took a place 
in sections seventeen and eighteen and after occupying the same 
a short time sold, in the fall of 1857, to Joseph Cannedy. David 
H. Orr had been in the town before this on a prospecting tour, 
but returned to stay in 1858. 

A small colony of Norwegians had arrived in 1855, and it 
is claimed that some came the year previous. They all settled 
in the southern part of the town, mostly along Prairie creek. As 
many of those whose names are remembered will be given, viz : 
Halver Quie, Hans Hanson, Rinde Erick, Shure and Ingebret 
Ingebretson, Toske Bunday, Sever Aslakson, Ole Lockrun and 
two brothers, Helger Hanson, Lars Knuteson, Nels Oleson, John 
Hanson, Andrew Johnson, Guttorm Severson, Eson Clemmerson, 
Sever Oleson, Ole Severson. With them was a man who in the 
summer was called the "Old Saw-mill" because, as it is claimed, 
he and his daughter with a whipsaw cut up all the lumber used 
by this small army for building purposes ; in the winter he 
spent his time cobbling and was then called the "Old Shoe- 
maker." This crowd was joined the following year by Osmund 


Osmundson, Captain John Hanson, who could talk English, as 
could Halver Quie, and Toske Bunday, and were known as the 
"Interpreters." Many others came at various times, and prob- 
ably a few of those mentioned as coming in 1855, did not reach 
their farms until the spring of the following year. 

The above list embraces most of the early settlers, but it 
is not intended to be a complete roll of all the pioneers, for only 
a census taken at that time and carefully preserved could do 

It is claimed that Elder T. R. Cressey, the pioneer Baptist 
preacher, held services in the house of Alexander Stewart in 
September, 1854. This was among the first services in the 
county. The first Methodist and Congregational services were 
also held in the same place, the first by the Rev. Mr. Curran. 
and the last by Rev. Mr. Hall. 

About the first birth in the county, and undoubtedly the first 
in the township, was that of James, a son of Alexander and Han- 
nah Stewart, at their residence in section thirty-one, near the 
city. The boy died some years ago. Willie Ferrall, a son of 
Mr. and Mrs. Charles Ferrall, was born in the year 1857. A 
number of Norwegian children were born very early. 

The first marriage of persons from this town was John, a 
son of Jonathan Alexander, who went cast shortly after his 
arrival in the town and was married while there to Ann Toliff. 
and together they returned to their new home in the West. 
Their marriage occurred late in 1854. About the first marriage 
within the limits of the township took place in 1855, at the resi- 
dence of the bride's parents, and the contracting parties were Mr. 
John Lamphicr and Athea Alexander; the ceremony being per- 
formed by the Congregational minister, Rev. Mr. Hall. William 
Bierman and Miss Christine Pray (or Prehn) were joined in the 
holy bonds early in 1857, by Squire Frost, the happy couple go- 
ing and returning from their place of union on foot. In the same 
fall August Pray was married to Miss Bierman, at the "dug out" 
of the groom's father, by a German minister. 

Two children of Herman Jerkins died in the fall of 1S56. 
and were buried on the old Kuykendahl (or Kirkendahl) place. 

The first meeting of the township was undoubtedly held 
on May 11, 1858, in common with the balance of Rice county's 
subdivisions; but the first twenty leaves of the records are 
torn from the clerk's book, and the original, and therefore the 
most interesting part of the township records must be guessed 
at. The first meeting shown by the records was held on April 
1, 1862, in Lyceum Hall, in Northfield, and O. H. Rawson was 
appointed moderator, and George W. Butterfield, clerk. The 
moderator then declared the polls open, the ballot box being in 


charge of N. G. Clary, G. Gregory and Linus Fox. After the 
polls were closed it was found that there had been about ninety 
votes cast, and the following officers were declared elected: 
Supervisors, John S. Way, chairman ; J. A. Hunt and George 
C. Thorpe; clerk, George W. Butterfield; treasurer, M. P. Skin- 
ner; justices of the peace, Charles Taylor and Linus Fox; 
assessor, Elias Hobbs ; constables, Dwight Bushnell and John 

In February, 1864, a request was made by the freeholders of 
the locality for a special town meeting, to issue bonds for the 
purpose of compensating volunteers who should enlist to fill 
the quota assigned the town. This call was signed by Charles 
Taylor, J. A. Hunt, Linus Fox, S. L. Bushnell, William Thorpe, 
H. Scriver, E. Lathrop and E. Lockwood. Accordingly the 
requisite papers were issued, and on February 26, 1864, the 
special meeting came to order in the Lyceum Hall and T. H. 
Olin was chosen moderator. The records then says they voted 
the sum of $2,000, or as much thereof as, in the discretion of the 
board, should be necessary to procure volunteers. Bonds to be 
issued at 12 per cent interest. The proceedings are signed by 
the supervisors, who were, John S. Way, J. A. Hunt and G. C. 
Thorpe. E. Lathrop was clerk. Then, on the following March 
7 the treasurer was directed to let bonds be issued in favor of 
the following volunteers, at the rate of interest mentioned above, 
and the amount as set opposite their names, as follows: Kleber 
Wilkinson, $100; William A. Bowe, $100; James A. Philbeck, 
$125; Henry Pratt, $100; Frank Groom, $100; William C. Hay- 
cock, $100; William A. Bickett, $100; Robert S. Kenne, $100; 
E. B. Hale, $100; William H. Wood, $50; Frank Schofield, $100; 
Andrew L. Emory, $100. Total, $1,175. This order was signed 
by the last above mentioned supervisors. 

Shortly after this, in July, 1864, another request was made by 
the following named freeholders for a special meeting for the 
purpose of voting money to volunteers : Charles Taylor, Will- 
iam Thorpe, J. A. Hunt, E. Lockwood, M. W. Skinner, Robert 
Silk, Urill Butler, E. Slocum, John Simmons, S. L. Bushnell, 
J. L. McFee, John Vanater and H. Jenkins, Jr. The requested 
meeting was held in the store of H. Jenkins, Jr., and Hiram 
Scriver was elected moderator. After the usual preliminaries 
it was voted that $6,000 should be issued in bonds at 12 per cent 
interest to those who should volunteer to enlist to fill the town's 
quota. The supervisors at that time were D. H. Orr, William 
Thorpe, and N. Wheaton. Another special meeting was held 
on November 8, 1864, at which the sum of $200 was voted for 
relief to the families of volunteers, and C. A. Wheaton, W. J. 
Sibbison and I. S. Field were made a committee to investigate 


and distribute the relief. Still another special meeting was held 
January 21, 1865, at which $8,000 was voted to pay bounties to 
volunteers, the meeting being held at Lyceum Hall in Northfield, 
and the report is signed by William Thorpe, D. H. Orr, and M. 
Wheaton, supervisors. 


Shieldsville township is one of the townships in the western 
tier of Rice county, situated just north of Morristown. On the 
north is Erin ; on the east, Wells, and on the west, LeSueur 
county. It embraces as its territory thirty-six sections, or 
23,040 acres, of which a greater portion is under cultivation. 

There are no cataracts or water-powers, but it is abundantly 
supplied with lakes. The largest of these is Cedar lake, in the 
southeastern part of the town, covering portions of sections 
twenty-five and thirty-six. A number of islands dot the placid 
surface of water. West of this lake one mile is Mud lake, cover- 
ing about 320 acres of section twenty-eight. Rice lake floods 
about the same number of acres in sections sixteen and seven- 
teen, and east of this one mile a small body of water known 
as Hunt lake occupies a part of section fifteen. In the northern 
portion of the township is Tuft's lake, and another small body 
of water infringes on the territory from Erin. These lakes are 
almost all connected by small rivulets and streams, sluggishly 
and lazily wending their way through the marsh lands and lakes, 
to eventually mingle with the Cannon river. 

To the eye, Shieldsville presents a view of undulating sur- 
face, with here and there a tendency to hilly, timber, marsh and 
meadow land. The forest, the tranquil and glassy lakes, embedded 
in the midst of the hills, and the sluggish course of the laz\ 
streams as they wind their pathway between the sister lakes, 
combine to make Shieldsville a pleasant and picturesque spot. 

All through the township the early pioneers found beautiful 
groves of oak, and all sturdy varieties of timber, interspersed 
with maple and walnut ; and in the shady aisles of this miniature 
forest clear sparkling springs bubbled up. furnishing pure, clear, 
cold water, and forming the fountain heads of many affluents to 
the Cannon river. 

The town is well adapted to agricultural pursuits, and has a 
large cultivated area, yielding, besides the usual cereals, all tin 
crops common to this latitude, and in the low lands an abundant 
yield of haw Fruit culture is also attended to in a moderate 
and limited way, with fair results. 

As in Erin township, the early settlemenl of Shieldsville was 
due almost entirely to the descendants of the Emerald Isle, and 



was known in early days as General Shields' colony. About the 
first to arrive in the township was General Shields, a native of 
Ireland, who laid out the village of Shieldsville and at once took 
steps towards collecting his countrymen about him. He arrived 
in 1855, early in the spring, and after staying long enough to 
lay out the village, he retraced his steps to St. Paul, returning 
the same year with a number of Irishmen, many of whom set- 
tled in Erin and were identified with the early growth and set- 
tlement of that locality. Shields then commenced a period of 
advertising in the papers of the East, stating that he had located 
here, and was desirous of being joined by his countrymen, and 
began raising colonies. This had a telling effect, as it was not 
long until they began crowding in on foot, by horse, ox, and cow 
teams, and taking farms, until by the fall of 1856 the town was 
pretty w r ell settled, and the government land, of the better qual- 
ity, was scarce. Most of those who came in at this time will be 

General James Shields. This distinguished man was early 
identified with the settlement of Rice county. He was born in 
Atmore, Tyrone county, Ireland, December 12, 1810, came to 
America in 1826, and studied law until 1832, when he went to 
Kaskaskia, 111., to practice the profession. In 1836, he was in the 
legislature of that state, and in 1843 was judge of the supreme 
court. In 1845, he was appointed commissioner of the land office. 
When the Mexican war broke out, President Polk appointed 
him as a brigadier-general, his commission bearing date 
July 1, 1846, and for distinguished services at Cerro Gordo, where 
he was dangerously wounded, was breveted major general. He 
was again wounded at the battle of Chepultepec. In 1848, the 
General was appointed governor of Oregon territory, which he 
soon resigned, and in 1849 was elected United States senator for 
six years. At the expiration of his term of service he came to 
Minnesota and started the village of Shieldsville, but was soon 
induced to join the proprietors of the town of Faribault, where 
he was agent and attorney for the townsite company. He was 
elected to the United States senate for the short term terminating 
in 1860, at the expiration of which he went to California. When 
the Rebellion was inaugurated he received the appointment of 
brigadier general by President Lincoln, was assigned to a com- 
mand and gained a victory at Winchester, where he was severely 
wounded. After the war he took up his residence in Missouri, 
where he remained in private life until 1877, when he was elected 
to fill a vacancy caused by the retirement of Senator Armstrong, 
and served to the end of that congress, and afterwards devoted 
his time to lecturing until his death, which was on June 1, 1879. 
at Ottumwa. Mo. 


John Nagle, another native of the Emerald Isle, had arrived 
in America in 1848, and located in New York state, where he re- 
mained until 1855, when he came west and arrived in Shieldsville 
at the time the first settlement was made in Erin, in June, 1855. 
The majority of the party he came with located in the latter 
town, but he made his way to section eleven in Shieldsville. A 
few others came through, and some stopped for a time in Shields- 
ville. but the majority in this year settled in other localities. 

Bernard Hunt, another Irishman, had stopped in Illinois for a 
time, and in June, 1856, made his appearance in Shieldsville and 
pre-empted a place. He remained for about a year and then 
came to the southwest quarter of section fourteen. The lake, to 
which his farm was adjacent, was named by the Indians as Eagle 
lake, but it has now changed to Hunt lake by common consent. 
Among others who came in 1856, Michael Gavin and family were 
prominent and settled near Hunt lake. 

James Murphy and several sons, James Carpenter, J. Roach 
and Mr. Gillispie all came, took farms, erected log cabins and 
commenced farming. Michael Delaney came in the spring of 
1856 and secured a habitation in section ten, where he remained 
until his death. Roger Madden arrived about the same time and 
commenced a settlement in the eastern part of section twenty- 
one, and Thomas Minton took 160 acres adjoining in the same 
section. Patrick Hagarty and William Mahoney each took a 
farm near Cedar lake in sections twenty-three and twenty-seven. 
Thomas O'Donnell joined this settlement and took 160 acres in 
section twenty. Patrick Smith located a couple of miles west 
of these settlers, in section twenty-nine, at the same time, and 
Patrick Murphy helped close up the gap by taking a farm in 
section twenty-two. John Fitzgerald carved a place for settle- 
ment from the woods in section eight. 

Thomas Roach came into section seventeen the same year 
(1856) and remained a short time. Daniel Savage located near 
Rice lake and remained there until his death. John Buckley also 
made a claim near the same lake. Daniel and David Gonsor 
made their appearance and took pre-emptions east of Hunt lake, 
the latter of them going into Wells some years later. James 
Murphy located in section ten. 

About the first birth in this township was that of John Hunt, 
born July 28, 1856, to Bernard Hunt, in a log cabin on section 
twenty-two. In the spring of the following year a brother of 
John was born. He was named Thomas. D. F. Hagarty was 
born early in 1856 on section twenty-two. Other early births 
may have occurred, but they are not recorded. 

The earliest marriage of persons from this township occurred 
in Hastings, in 1857; the contracting parties being Michael 


Gavin and Mary Ann Rogers, who returned to the township and 
lived here until Mr. Gavin's death in 1869. Another early mar- 
riage was that of James Carpenter to Ellen McCohey, of St. 
Paul ; the ceremony taking place in that city in 1857, the groom 
meeting the bride there. 

In early days, as early as 1857, an outlaw named Hawley 
made this part of the county his stamping ground, and as he 
had committed many depredations, for which he was wanted by 
the officers of the law, he was as quiet in his movements as pos- 
sible. His strategy, however, was ineffectual, as the authorities 
in Faribault some way became cognizant of his whereabouts, 
and a party sent out in search of him finally found him near 
Shieldsville, and, surrounding him with clubs and butcher knives, 
killed him. This was among the first deaths in the township. 

Another early death was that of Bridget Harrison, a sixteen 
or seventeen-year-old girl, in 1858. 

During the Indian outbreak, in 1862, this township had many 
serious and amusing anecdotes to divert the minds of the citizens 
from agricultural duties. Although up to this time there had 
been plenty of redskins passing to and fro through the town, yet 
they had not been especially troublesome, except as to their beg- 
ging propensities, and General Shields had permitted them to 
use as a camping ground a spot adjoining the village known as 
the General's island. When the actual outbreak occurred, the 
dusky-skinned hunters were wily enough to see that the whites 
were afraid, and they began to get arrogant and defiant, and 
finally the whites decided to have them go. So a small force of 
probably 100 men gathered together, and, going to the island, 
told the disturbers that they must go. This they refused to do 
at first, offering as an excuse that they had a letter from the 
General with a permit to occupy the same as their home. Words 
were bandied, and the spokesman of the pioneers informed them 
that if "General Shields was there a gun would be put in his 
hands and he would be forced to fight," implying that General 
Shields was not running that campaign. This ended the matter 
of words, and on a slight show of fight on the part of the Indians 
the pioneers began knocking the teepees right and left, which 
settled the matter as far as resistance was concerned. 

Another time a party of fifty armed pioneers drove a band of 
Indians from the hills near Mud lake, and forced them to leave 
the township, although at one time — as one of them told us — 
there was not a man in the crowd but would have given a num- 
ber of years of his life to have turned heels and run for the woods. 
Mazaska Lake. This body of water extends into four town- 
ships, Erin, Forest, Wells, and Shieldsville, being located in the 
four corners, and infringes on Shieldsville in the northeastern 


part. The old Indian chief "Eastman" claimed that the lake re- 
ceived its name in honor of his son, and it was for years called 
"Mazuka," which was the name of the youth. The name was 
later corrupted to "Mazaska." 

This township was created as a government within itself 
when the territory of Minnesota was admitted to the Union in 
1858, and the first town meeting was held May 11, that year, at 
Shieldsville village. After the usual preliminaries the township 
was organized by the election of the first officers, as follows: 
Supervisors, Joseph Hagerty, chairman ; Patrick Cunniff, and 
Patrick Smith; constables, Michael Hanley and Patrick Mc- 
Kenna; justices of the peace, Timothy Doyle and James Roach ; 
assessor, John Finley ; town clerk, John H. Gibbons. It was 
voted that the town should be named Shieldsville, in honor of 
General James Shields, with a slight show of enthusiasm. Money 
was voted then to defray town expenses for the coming year. 

This township did its share in sustaining the government 
through the war of the Rebellion, and in furnishing men. March 
2, 1864, a special town meeting was held at which the sum of 
$3,000 was voted for the purpose of raising volunteers or substi- 
tutes to fill the quota of the town. The officers at this meeting 
were Joseph Hagerty. chairman; Richard Leahy and Patrick 
Smith ; Maurice O'Hearn was clerk. Again, cm January 25, 1865. 
another special meeting was held at which the sum of $4,000 was 
voted for the same purpose. The officers at this time were Joseph 
Hagerty, chairman; Patrick Murphy and John Ilealey; Patrick 
McKenna was clerk. At a subsequent meeting $500 was levied 
to pay interest on the bonds, making in all the sum of $7,500. 


Wheatland township is the subject of an article elsewhere in 
this history. 


Webster township is the companion town of Wheatland in 
extending the boundary line of the county northward. It is in 
the northwestern part of Rice county; it> contiguous .surround- 
ings are the counties of Scott ami Dakota on the north and east. 
with Bridgewater township forming an eastern boundary to se< 
tion thirty-six; on the south Forest and on the west Wheatland 
Webster is comprised of thirty-six square miles, containing 23, 
040 acres, of which about 330 are covered with water. The soil 
is variable, the hilly portions being somewhat clayey, while tin 
rolling and bottom lands are made up a rich dark loam, with a 
clay or sand subsoil. The southwestern part <>i the township i.-. 
very rolling in some places, enough so to hi' termed hilly, which 


gradually becomes more level to the northward. This was origi- 
nally covered with very fine timber such as oak, walnut, maple, 
basswood, etc., but this has nearly all been cut down long since 
and used for building and other purposes. One of the walnut 
forests, such as abounded here in an early day, would now prove 
an immense fortune to those who, in pioneer times, cut them 
down as ruthlessly as poplar. In the northern part of the town 
it is also quite hilly, and this was covered with timber of the 
small varieties; but to the eastward the surface becomes more 
even, although the tendency to rolling is still apparent and some- 
times quite abrupt. This portion was originally covered with 
small timber, interspersed with natural meadows, and small 
prairie spots covered with hazel brush, scrub oak, elm, etc., but 
this has long since almost entirely disappeared, and now many 
fine and fertile farms have transformed the spot where once the 
Indian hunter and wild beast held undisputed sway into a land of 
beauty, thrift, civilization and productiveness. 

Webster is not so well watered as most of its contiguous 
neighbors — in fact, it has no lakes of any importance wholly 
within its borders — nor is its surface traversed by streams of any 
note. Union lake is the largest body of water in the town, enter- 
ing from Forest and covering about 200 acres in section thirty- 
five. Knowles lake is the next in size, located in the western part 
of the town, almost wholly in section nineteen. These two lakes 
are connected by a stream flowing from the latter, called Chub 
creek. Another little stream rises in the northwestern part of 
the township and crosses sections five and six as it leaves and 
enters Scott county. Still another small brook rises in the eastern 
part of section eleven, and, crossing section thirteen in a south- 
easterly direction, enters Dakota county. 

In the spring of 1855 a settlement was commenced in the 
southeastern part of Webster township. Harry Humphrey, a 
native of New York, having stopped for a time in Ohio, arrived 
and secured a place in section thirty-six, on the shore of Union 
lake. He put up a log house and commenced running it as a 
hotel. He remained here until some time in the seventies, when 
he disposed of his farm and removed to Minneapolis, where he 
died in 1881, his wife soon following him. They left several 
sons in various parts of the Northwest. 

Martin Taylor, a native of Ireland, secured a claim in section 
twenty-one in November, 1855. He had left his family in Hast- 
ings, but in the following spring removed them to his new made 
home, where he had erected a small log shanty. He then went 
to work and cleared and spaded up three acres of land, which he 
planted to corn and potatoes. The next spring, wishing to seed 
the ground to wheat, he started with a yoke of oxen but no 


wagon to Northfield, the nearest point where the seed could be 
obtained. He placed one sack of wheat across the back of one 
ox, and another across the yoke, arriving home in safety with his 
wheat. With this he raised 110 bushels. 

Neither of the localities, which were about five miles apart, 
received many settlers during the year 1855. The Union lake 
settlement, in the southern part of the town, that was begun in 
the spring by Mr. Humphrey, was increased in December by the 
arrival of two more parties, S. J. and Chalmer M. Webster, na- 
tives of Ohio. S. J. took a valuable claim in section thirty-five, 
and Chalmer M. took a farm about two miles to the west, in sec- 
tion twenty-eight. Both of these early comers remained on their 
places until 1866, when they removed to Marshall, Lyon county. 

Ferris Webster, now deceased, was a prominent and active 
figure in the early settlement of this locality, and it was in honor 
of him that the town received its name. He was father of the 
men above mentioned, and came to the township at the same 
time, taking a farm in section twenty-six, where he remained 
until the time of his death, which occurred in 1880. 

In the spring following Mr. Webster's arrival all parts of the 
township began to be settled, and the two settlements already 
started branched into surrounding sections with surprising rapid- 
ity. Jacob Camp with his wife came this year, and he, after se- 
curing a farm in sections twenty-seven and thirty-four, com- 
menced the erection of a log hut. The grit and perseverance 
of early settlers is indicated by the fact that he carried the logs 
to build his house on his shoulders, and drew his stove through 
the woods from Northfield with a sled by hand. Early in the 
spring, and about the time of the last mentioned arrival, Ransom 
F. and Oscar Webster, natives of the Buckeye state, came ami 
settled in section twenty-six, immediately commencing to build 
log houses. The first remained in the township until 1874, when 
he sold his farm and removed to Lyon county, where a couple of 
his brothers had preceded him. Oscar Webster remained on his 
farm until 1870. In May, 1856, Thomas Keegar.. a native of the 
Emerald Isle, made his appearance and took a claim northwest of 
Taylor's place, in section seventeen. He put up a log shanty and 
a hay and brush stable and commenced getting land ready for 
seed. He remained on his place until 1864, when he sold out and 
removed to Nebraska. With the settler mentioned above came 
another native of Ireland, in the person of William Sabry. lie 
took a place a short distance south of his companion, locating in 
n twenty-one, where he made improvements and remained 
until 1868, when he removed to liismarck, D. T. Section eleven 
also received a settler this year, and commenced a settlement in 
the northern part of the town. John Gleason, of Ireland, settled 


on section eleven. About the same time James McCabe, a native 
of Massachusetts, selected a farm in section twelve. He erected 
a log shanty and commenced farming. In 1865, he opened a 
general merchandise store. Joseph Dilly was also a settler of 
this year. Belling Benton, a native of England, made his appear- 
ance in 1856, and located on a beautiful piece of ground in section 
thirty-six, bordering on the shores of Union lake. After this the 
influx became so rapid and incessant that it would be impossible 
to chronicle the arrivals in their sequence, but we give the promi- 
nent ones who took farms and remained. James Kiley, a native 
of Ireland, arrived in 1857, and secured a farm in section ten. 
The following year, 1858, another quarter of the same section 
was secured by Mr. Maher, also of Celtic origin. E. C. Knowles 
settled on the northwest quarter of section twenty-nine in 1860. 
He came to Minnesota in 1855. John Cole was another early set- 
tler in Minnesota, having come to the state in 1856. He arrived 
in Webster in 1865, taking a farm in section twenty-eight. Cor- 
nelius Denman came to Rice county from Ohio in 1855 and set- 
tled in Morristown. In 1867, he purchased a farm in section 
thirty-four, Webster. 

Ola Elstad, of Norway, settled in section one in 1862, and in 
1866 Edward Elstad, of the same nationality, purchased a farm 
adjoining him in the same section. In 1874, Nels Hoagenson 
joined the little settlement of Norwegians, and took a place in 
section two. J. O. Larson, G. Christopherson, M. Christianson 
and others came in at various times and swelled the settlement 
of this nationality. Thomas Gleason, a native of the Emerald 
Isle, came in 1864 and purchased a large farm in sections twelve 
and thirteen. Joseph Gear, another Irishman, took a farm oft" of 
an early settler's hands, in 1868, in section twelve. Robert Camp- 
bell came to America in 1862, and in 1866 arrived in Webster, 
purchasing the farm in section eighteen. In 1867, Henry Graves 
came and purchased 120 acres in section twenty-one. The same 
year J. G. Walden, of Maine, purchased a farm in section twenty- 
eight. Thomas Lynch came in 1863 and bought a farm in section 
thirty-two. He was a native of Ireland. 

Thus it will be seen that the settlement of the township 
pushed onward, each succeeding year witnessing still further ad- 
ditions and developments. Farms were opened in all parts of the 
town, and the early comers began to reap the just reward of their 
industry. Step by step the change had been wrought, until a 
new era had almost imperceptibly dawned upon the scene. Larger 
buildings were erected, schools and churches established, and a 
general air of enterprise was manifest where so recently all was 
wild and uninhabited. From the crude efforts of earlier years 
the present tillers of the soil fast adapted wiser and more sys- 


tematic modes of farming, the beneficent results of which are al- 
ready so plainly apparent. 

Webster township was originally named Minnemada, and for 
a short time this was the name of the locality. It was afterwards 
voted by the citizens that the town be named Carroltown, but the 
county commissioners bestowed upon it the name of Webster, 
and it has ever since recognized this as its appellation, being in 
honor of Ferris Webster, an early settler in the town. 

The first birth of a white child in the township was that of 
John McGuire, March 18, 1857. A daughter of Mr. and Mrs. 
Jacob Camp was born in January, 1858. A child was born to 
Mr. and Mrs. Salmon Webster in May, 1858. December, 1858, 
witnessed the birth of Thomas, a son of Martin Taylor and wife. 

The marriage of Webster persons occurred in June, 1856, and 
joined as man and wife Salmon Webster and Fannie Humphrey. 
Another marriage occurred in August, 1858, the contracting 
parties being Ephraim Dilly and Alice St. John. 

In the summer of 1858, Webster first felt the effects of the 
ravages of death. The wife of Samuel Dilly was the first victim. 
Her little daughter died soon afterward and hers was the second 

In common with all the subdivisions of Rice county, the 
organization of this township took place soon after the territory 
was admitted as a state in 1858, and the first meeting was held on 
May 11 of that year. This meeting was held at the residence of 
Ephraim Dilly, and came to order by appointing Michael O'Mara 
chairman and S. S. Humphrey clerk. 

The meeting then proceeded to ballot for officers to take 
charge of town matters, which resulted as follows : Supervisors, 
George Carpenter, chairman, R. II. Dilly and James Kelly; town 
clerk, J. J. McCabe; collector, Timothy Gleason ; justices of the 
peace, Ephraim Dilly, Sr., and F. Webster; constables, William 
Dilly and Elisha Fitch; overseer of roads, William Dilly, Sr. 
Next the meeting took up the matter of town expenses and voted 
the sum of $100 for that purpose. The affairs of public interest 
have been attended to since this inaugural meeting with com- 
mendable zeal and fidelity, there having been exhibited due econ- 
omy in regard to finance and public expenditures. 



Election Precincts as Organized in 1856 — Houston, Faribault, 
East Prairie, Cannon River and Forest — First Judges of 
Elections — New Precincts Created — Various Changes — 
Townships Assume Practically Present Form and Name in 
1858 — Warsaw Then Called Sargent — Faribault and Cannon 
City Divided. 

February 9, 1856, the board of county commissioners estab- 
lished several voting precincts. This is the beginning of the 
official recognition of the names which, to a certain extent, were 
later to be applied to the organized townships. 

Houston precinct comprised townships 109 and 110, range 22, 
and west half of townships 109 and 110, range 21. This included 
the present townships of Shieldsville and Morristown and the 
west half of Wells and Warsaw. 

Faribault precinct comprised the east half of townships 109 
and 110, range 21, and the west half of townships 109 and 110, 
range 20. This included all the present city of Faribault, the east 
half of Warsaw and Wells and the west half of Walcott and 
Cannon City. 

East Prairie precinct comprised a territory beginning at the 
southeast corner of township 109, range 19, thence running north 
to the northeast corner of section 13 in township 110, range 19; 
thence west to the northwest corner of section 15 in township 
110, range 20; thence south to the southwest corner of section 
34, township 109, range 20; thence east to the place of beginning. 
This included all of the present township of Richland, two-thirds 
of Wheeling, the east half of Walcott and two-thirds of the east 
half of Cannon City. 

Cannon River precinct comprised a territory beginning at the 
southeast corner of section 12, township 110, range 19; thence 
west to the southwest corner of section 10, township 110, range 
20; thence north two miles; thence west three miles; thence north 
to the northwest corner of section 6, township 111, range 20; 
thence east to the northeast corner of section 1, township 111, 
range 19; thence south to the place of beginning. This would 
include the northern one-third of the present township of Wheel- 
ing, the northern one-third of the east half of Cannon City, and 



all except the northern tier of townships in Bridgewater and 

Forest precinct comprised a territory commencing at the 
southeast corner of section 36, township 111, range 21; thence 
running north twelve miles; thence west twelve miles; thence 
south twelve miles ; thence east twelve miles to the place of be- 
ginning. This included the present townships of Wheatland, 
Erin, Webster and Forest. 

The judges of elections in these precincts were appointed as 
follows, April 10: 

Houston — Christian Hershey, Reuben Morris, William Wil- 

Faribault — G. W. Batchelder, Luke Hulett, Isaac Woodman. 

East Prairie — James Sears, Elijah Austin, Abner Beardsley. 

Cannon River — John L. Schofield, H. M. Matteson, Benjamin 
Lockaly, Sr. 

Forest — J. A. Wedgewood, Samuel A. Anderson, James Fitz- 

July 10, 1856, Northfield precinct was set off. The new pre- 
cinct was described as follows : Commencing at the southeast 
corner of section 12, township 111, range 19; thence running w r est 
twelve miles ; thence north two miles ; thence east twelve miles, 
and thence south two miles to the place of beginning. The judges 
of election were Charles Stewart, Daniel B. Turner and Herman 
Jenkins. This precinct included a strip two sections wide the 
whole length of Bridgewater and Northfield townships. 

April 5, 1857, new election precincts were established. 

Wheatland included all of township 112, range 22 west. This 
is as at present. The petition for the establishment of the pre- 
cinct was signed by David B. McCormick and thirty-five others. 
Michael Fitzpatrick was appointed justice and William Vincent 

Shieldsville comprised a territory described as follows: Com- 
mencing at the southwest corner of section 18, township 110, 
range 22; thence east nine miles; thence north five miles; thence 
west three miles; thence north four miles; thence west six miles ; 
thence south nine miles to the place of beginning. This would 
include the northern half of the present Shieldsville township, the 
northwest quarter of Wells, the southwest sixth of Forest and all 
of Erin. The petition was signed by John Johnson and nine 
others. John Johnson was appointed justice and Patrick Doyle 

April 10, 1857, the boundaries of the election districts were 
again defined. 

East Prairie. Commencing at the southeasl corner of town- 
ship 109, range 19; thence north twelve miles: thence wesl nine 


miles; thence south twelve miles; thence east nine miles to place 
of beginning. This embraced the present townships of Richland 
and Wheeling and the east half of Cannon City and Walcott. 

Faribault. Commencing at the southeast corner of section 
33, township 109, range 20; thence north twelve miles; thence 
west six miles; thence south twelve miles; thence east six miles 
to place of beginning. This included the present city of Fari- 
bault, the west half of Cannon City, the west half of Walcott and 
the east halves of Wells and Warsaw. 

Houston. Commencing at the southeast corner of section 33, 
township 109, range 21 ; thence north nine miles ; thence west 
nine miles; thence south nine miles; thence east nine miles to 
place of beginning. This included the west half of Warsaw, the 
southwest quarter of Wells, all of Morristown and the south half 
of Shieldsville. 

Northfield — the precincts of Northfield and Cannon River 
having been combined. Commencing at the southeast corner of 
township 111, range 19; thence north six miles; thence west 
twelve miles; thence south six miles; thence east six miles to 
place of beginning. This included the present townships of 
Bridgewater with the exception of the twelve sections later an- 
nexed from Dakota county. 

Forest. Commencing at the southeast corner of township 
111, range 21; thence west three miles; thence north two miles; 
thence west three miles; thence north four miles; thence east 
six miles; thence south six miles to place of beginning. This in- 
cluded all the present town of Forest except sections 28, 29, 30, 
31, 32 and 33, the southwestern sixth. 

Shieldsville remained the same as created July 10, 1856, in- 
cluding all the present township of Erin, the north half of Shields- 
ville, the northwest quarter of Wells, and sections 28, 29, 30, 31, 
32 and 33 in Forest. 

Minnemedah was the present Webster. 

Wheatland was as at present. 

The judges of election were as follows: 

Faribault — Isaac Woodman, John B. Wheeler, Charles Will- 

Houston — Walter Morris, Henry Bassett, Russell Randall. 

Shieldsville — William Haney, John Johnson, John Tufts. 

Wheatland — William Vincent, Titus Bunnell, John Falconer. 

Minnemedah — H. M. Humphrey, Farris Webster, Robert H. 

East Prairie — Isaac N. Sater, Calvin Frink, Elijah Austin. 

Northfield — Ira S. Field, Benjamin Lockerly, Joseph R. 

July 7, 1857, the board attached to Northfield precinct the sec- 


tions that had been annexed from Dakota county, viz, : sections 

31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36 in township 112, range 20, and sections 31, 

32, 33, 34, 35 and 36 in township 112, range 19. 

April 11, 1858, the following resolution was passed: That the 
county commissioners divide this county into towns as provided 
in the provisions of an act entitled, "An act providing for town- 
ship organization." . . . That this county is divided into 
towns, making each township according to the government sur- 
vey a town as provided by the provisions of the above act, with 
the exceptions of sections 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 and 36, township 112, 
range 20, which are annexed to the township next south : and 
sections 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 and 36, township 112, range 19, which 
are annexed to the township next south. 

April 14, 1858, the commissioners met in special session. 
Communications were received from the chairmen and secretaries 
of three respective meetings asking that the name of Northfield 
be given to township 111, ranges 19 and 20; the name of Wells to 
township 110, range 21; and the name of Richland to township 
109, range 19. A petition was also received from Walter Morris 
asking that township 109, range 22, be called Morristown ; from 
Samuel P. Walcott and others asking that township 109, range 
20, be called Walcott ; and from S. A. Henderson and others ask- 
ing that township 111, range 21, be named Forest; Thomas Bolls 
and others of Cannon City asking that the name Crystal Lake 
be given to the following described territory : Sections 1. 2, 3, 4, 
5, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25. 26, 27, 34, 35. 36 
and the cast half of 28, 8 and 17, in township 110, range 20; sec- 
tions 33, 34, 35 and 36 in township 111, range 20; section 31 in 
township 111, range 1''. and sections 6, 7, 18, 19, 30 and 31. town- 
ship 111, range 19. \Y. P>. Spencer and others asked that the 
name of East Prairieville be given to the following described 
territory: Commencing at the southeast corner <>f township 110, 
range 20; thence running west three miles: thence north two and 
a half miles; thence east three miles: thence south three miles to 
place of beginning. It will be noted that this description is an 
impossible one, owing doubtless to clerical error. The descrip- 
tion of Crystal Lake also appears to have been jumbled in copy- 

April 15, 1858, the following petitions were granted: That of 
Walter Morris and others that township 109, range 22, be called 
Morristown. That of William Thompson and others and Norris 
N, Craves and others that township Id", range 21. he called Sar- 
gent, That of Samuel 1'. Walcott and others that township 109, 
range 20, be called Walcott. That of citizens that township 109, 
range 19, he named Richland. 

April 17, the following petitions were received and granted: 


That of Michael Gavin and others that township 110, range 22, be 
organized as Shieldsville. That of Thomas Flannigan and others 
that township 111, range 22, be organized as Erin. That of citi- 
zens that township 110, range 19, be named Wheeling. That of 
citizens that township 110, range 21, be named Wells. That of 
inhabitants that township 111, range 21, be named Forest. No 
name having been presented for township 112, range 21, it was 
named Webster. No name having been presented for township 
112, range 22, it was named Wheatland. At the same meeting 
J. S. Archibald and others remonstrated against the proposed 
division of township 111, range 20, as prayed by Joseph R. 
Drake and others. The petition of J. S. Archibald and others at 
township 111, range 20, excepting section 1 (and sections 31, 32, 
33, 34 and 35 in township 112, range 20), be organized under the 
name of Bridgewater, section 1, 111, 20, and section 36, 112, 20, to 
be added to the town next east, was granted. Township 111, 
range 19, was named Northfield, no mention being made of sec- 
tions 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 and 36, township 112, range 20; section 
1, 111,20, or section 36, 112,20. 

It then became necessary to divide township 110, range 20. 
The petition of Thomas Bolles has already been mentioned. A 
petition was presented by S. C. Gilman and others asking that 
Faribault constitute the following territory : Sections 6, 7, 18, 19, 
20, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, the west half of sections 8, 17 and 
28 and the south half of sections 25, 26, 27 and 28. The board re- 
solved that township 110, range 20, be divided into two town- 
ships, as follows : Said line commencing at the northwest corner 
of section 5 ; thence running south one mile; thence east one-half 
mile to the quarter stake on the north line of section 8; thence 
south two miles to the quarter stake on the north line of section 
20; thence east one-half a mile to the northwest corner of section 
21 ; thence south one mile to the northwest corner of section 28; 
thence east one-half a mile to the quarter stake on the north line 
of section 28; thence south one mile to the quarter stake on the 
north line of section 33 ; thence east three and a half miles to the 
section stake at the northeast corner of section 36, all in the same 
town and range ; that the part north and east of this line be called 
Cannon City and all west and south, Faribault. 

The name of Sargent was afterward changed to Warsaw. 
The people of Webster attempted to name their town Carollton, 
but were not successful. 



Conditions at the Outbreak of the Struggle — First War Meeting 
— Items of Interest — Bounties and Drafts — Ladies' Soldiers' 
Aid Society — Names of the Veterans from Rice County — 
First Infantry — Second Infantry — Third Infantry — Fourth 
Infantry — Fifth Infantry — Sixth Infantry — Seventh Infantry 
— Eighth Infantry — Tenth Infantry — Eleventh Infantry — 
First Battalion Infantry — First Heavy Artillery — First 
Mounted Rangers — Brackett's Battalion — Independent Bat- 
talion — Second Cavalry — Other Companies and Regiments — 
Revised by Hon. James Hunter. 

When the Civil war broke out in April 1861, Rice county had 
not been open to settlement ten years. The organization of the 
county was not six years old, and the state had been admitted to 
the Union scarcely three years. The people had but just started 
making themselves homes in the wilderness, when came the call 
for troops to preserve the Union. 

The feeling prevailed among the people of Rice county that 
the Union must be preserved, and the sights and sounds that 
were visible and audible in every hamlet, village and city of the 
North were duplicated here. Men abandoned the pursuits of 
peace for the arts of war, and the share that Rice county and 
Minnesota had in those days of great and glorious deeds is 
recorded on the pages of United States history. 

Governor Alex. Ramsey, being in Washington when Fort 
Sumter surrendered, immediately tendered to President Lincoln 
1,000 men to defend the Union, being the first tender of troops 
made to the government, which was accepted. Ramsey notified 
Lieutenant-! lovernor Ignatius Donnelly to issue a call for volun- 
teers, which was issued just three days after the surrender of 
Sumter. Three days after the call on April 1 ( >. 1861, the first 
war meeting in Rice county was held at Metropolitan hall in 
Faribault The thrill of patriotism created by the call to arms 
vibrated throughout the state and people came from all the sur- 
rounding country to this meeting. At this meeting stirring 
speeches were made by Levi Nutting, Gordon E. Cole, John M. 
Berry and O. F. Perkins and more than two-thirds of the number 
required for t lie company, then called the Faribault Volunteers, 



were enrolled, and in a few days after the company attained the 
maximum of 100 men. At this time the company was presented 
with a flag by the ladies of Faribault, which subsequently be- 
came the regimental flag of the First Minnesota Volunteer In- 
fantry. The presentation was made by Thomas S. Buckham, 
now judge of the district court. The company then went to Fort 
Snelling, where it was mustered into the United States service 
May 29, 1861, for three months as Company G, First Minnesota 
Volunteer Infantry, and a few days later was mustered for three 
years or during the war. The memory of the dead of Company 
G, who were nearly all from Rice county, is enshrined in the 
hearts of all the early settlers of the county. 

In July, 1862, G. F. Batchelder offered a private bounty of 
$10 to any man who would enlist. At this time the government 
was paying $25 in advance, $3 extra and one month in advance 
to all who enlisted. July 4, 1862, the patriotism of the town of 
Faribault was stimulated by a celebration with Dr. Charles 
Jewett as an orator. August 12, 1862, there was a war meeting 
at the Metropolitan hall in Faribault, at which speeches were 
made in the interest of recruiting. Later in the history of the 
war more substantial inducements were offered in the shape of 
large bounties. 

Up to August, 1862, under the calls the state had to raise 
5,360 men, and the proportion for Rice county was 336. Levi 
Nutting was appointed provost marshal for the state. The Can- 
non River Guards, Captain Pettit, recruited here, marched Au- 
gust 20, 1862, with ninety-four officers and men. Lieutenant 
Cavanaugh was commissioned to recruit for the Eighth Minne- 
sota. In the summer of 1862, Hon. Mr. Magoon was in Fari- 
bault recruiting for the Sixth Regiment. Captain Parker was 
home in the summer on sick and recruiting leave. 

Up to August, 1862, Morristown, with less than 100 legal 
voters, sent sixty men into the ranks. At the time of the Sioux 
massacre, in August, 1862, Rice county promptly sent a force of 
cavalry to the front. Mr. Faribault had ninety men in the saddle 
very promptly. The Rice County Rangers was the first com- 
pany to report at St. Peter's. Major Dike was also authorized 
to raise a company to operate on the frontier. Lieutenant West 
was likewise engaged in recruiting a cavalry company from the 
county. In October, 1862, the recruiting was twenty-two ahead 
of the quota in Rice county. 

The board of county commissioners on August 8, 1862, took 
up war matters and appropriated money from the county fund, 
and provided that the sum of $20 be paid to every volunteer, the 
number not to exceed 200, who should on or before August 15 
enlist in the Rice County Guards, the Emmet Guards, or any 


other company organizing in Rice county. On September 2 an- 
other bounty of $20 was appropriated to all who would volunteer 
to fill the quota. After voting these bounties it was declared as 
follows by the board: "To be the intent and meaning of this 
resolution, together with the appropriation, passed August 8, 
1862, to provide for the payment hereinabove specified, to each 
and every person who shall have voluntarily enlisted in the serv- 
ice of the United States, as above mentioned. Providing, the 
number does not exceed filling Rice county's quota." 

The Mounted Rangers, raised to operate against the Sioux, 
and commanded by Col. Samuel McPhail, was partly recruited 
here by Lieut. O. D. Brown. During that terrible time quite 
large numbers from Rice county had their first experience in 
camp life in that campaign. While the troops were engaged with' 
the Sioux the draft was impending with its alarming uncertainty, 
and its distressingly few blanks, unlike usual raffles, all were 
anxious to draw, and so the governor sent a telegram to the 
President asking that the draft be postponed and the time for 
paying bounties for enlistments extended, and here is a copy of 
his characteristic reply: "Washington, August 27, 1862. — To 
Governor Ramsey : Yours received. Attend to the Indians ! 
If the draft cannot proceed, of course it will not proceed. Neces- 
sity knows no law. The government cannot extend the time. — 
A. Lincoln." 

On January, 8, 1863, the county board resolved "That each 
town in the county constitute a military district." This was 
done in accordance with a law which had been passed by the 
legislature of the state to organize all the available men, as to 
age and physical qualifications, into militia companies. In ac- 
cordance with the above law, which was passed on the 29th of 
September, 1862, the election in the various districts for commis- 
sioned officers was held on the 7th of April. 1863. Some of the 
districts having failed to elect, the officers were subsequently 
appointed by the board. The names of the officers of these com- 
panies are not here given because many of them never went to 
the front, and the names of those who actually served will ap- 
pear in the subjoined list. 

The Rice County Guards, Captain Cutter, was another local 
company; also the McClellan Guards. The Ladies' Aid Society 
in Faribault gave a grand entertainment in the winter of 1863 
Mrs. H. Wilson was president of the society at that time. 

In June, 1863, there were several Indians at Mr. Alexander 
Faribault's, and a rumor was circulated t<> the effect that some of 
them had been connected with the New Clm massacre, but Mr. 
Faribault promptly set the matter right. Those who were with 
him were Wacon, or Le Clare, and family, who came here when 


Faribault did ; Pay-pay and family and a widow and two chil- 
dren, the wife and mother of Good Thunder, who assisted in 
saving captives who were sent here for their safety. They were 
all "good Injuns." In the fall of 1863, Capt. E. A. Rice was at 
home on recruiting service. Charles Jewett, who had gone to 
Massachusetts, was commissioned as a lieutenant in the Fifty- 
fourth Regiment of that state. Dr. Jewett had three sons in the 
army; one of them, John, was killed in battle. In January, 1864, 
a resolution was adopted to equalize the bounty for the payment 
of $20 to certain soldiers who had enlisted previous to August 
21, 1862. In February, 1864, a bounty of $125 was voted by 
Faribault, and sixteen or seventeen were enlisted under the new 
call. The Fourth Minnesota re-enlisted in the winter of 1864, 
and came home on a veteran furlough. Company G, of the First 
Regiment, had a like home run, and a reception. The committee 
of reception on the part of the citizens consisted of Major William 
H. Dike, H. Wilson, E. N. Leavens, G. F. Batchelder, R. A. 
Mott, and a suitable honor was accorded them. 

In 1864, the question of voting relief by the county to the 
families of soldiers' widows and families was discussed, and reso- 
lutions were offered in the board, but opponents of the measure 
succeeded in defeating it, which may not, perhaps, be an evidence 
of want of patriotism, but the entertainment of a doubt as to 
whether this was the proper method to extend relief to this most 
deserving class, so many natural protectors of whom had sacri- 
ficed their lives for the safety of our common home. In 1864, 
Rev. L. Webb was commissioned to raise a company. G. L. 
Porter was a recruiting officer for heavy artillery in 1864. Major 
Michael Cook, of the Tenth Regiment, was killed at the battle of 
Nashville; his friends and neighbors paid due respect to his mem- 
ory on Dec. 27, 1864. In April, 1865, nearly $1,000 worth of 
sanitary stores were sent south. Early in the year 1865 a Sol- 
diers' Families' aid society was in operation, and festivals were in 
order to raise money. Several clergymen from Rice county were 
in the ranks, among them Rev. D. B. Anderson, a Baptist; Rev. 
L. Pease, a Methodist ; Rev. Lauren Armsby, pastor of the Con- 
gregational church in Faribault, was the chaplain of the Eighth 
Minnesota ; Rev. E. R. Lathrop, of the Tenth ; Rev. C. G. Bow- 
dish also enlisted. Rev. L. Webb was in an Illinois regiment. 
Charles E. Davidson was the interesting army correspondent of 
the "Republican" at Faribault. He was a member of Company 
G, First Minn. Vol. Inf. He died in November, 1862, at Bledsoe's 
Island, New York harbor, where he was carried after the "seven 
days' fight." He left a wife and many friends in Faribault. As 
the different companies came home at the expiration of their 
term of service, or at the close of the war, they were handsomely 


received. On the most important occasion of the kind General 
Nutting made the welcome address, which was responded to by 
Rev. Mr. Lathrop. Of course, there was the dinner and the usual 

Ladies' Soldiers' Aid Society. October 7, 1S61, when the idea 
of the magnitude of the struggle began to dawn upon the average 
Northern mind, and the notion that the Rebellion could be put 
down in three months was thoroughly dissipated, the patriotic 
ladies of Faribault met at Metropolitan hall and organized a so- 
ciety to assist in supplying the sick and wounded soldiers with 
necessary articles for their comfort. The membership was quite 
large and embraced the leading ladies of the place. The first 
officers of this association were : President. Mrs. Bemis : vice- 
president. Mrs. S. B. Rockway : secretary. Mrs. E. J. Crump; 
treasurer. Mrs. May Fisk : committee, Mrs. J. H. Winter, Mrs. 
A. J. Tanner. Mrs. W. H. Stevens. Mrs. S. F. Van Brunt and Mrs. 
A. P. Tula. 

Typical Contribution. As we are so rapidly passing away 
from the memories of those stirring times, it may be well to here 
preserve a memento of the war in the form of a list of articles 
that was furnished from Northfield, June 2. 1862. This was the 
second instalment of similar goods from that place. The invoice 
consisted of: Eight quilts, seventeen pillows, two dozen woolen 
socks, six coarse combs, ten fine combs, nine dressing gowns, one 
pair of slippers, nine new shirts, seven old shirts, eight pair of 
drawers, one dozen brown towels, nine cotton sheets, one linen 
sheet, twenty-one pillow cases, twenty-seven linen towels, forty 
cotton napkins, five dozen compresses, four linen handkerchiefs, 
forty-four rolls of bandages, one package of linen and cotton rags, 
eighteen palm leaf fans, one pair of shoes, three hair brushes, five 
quires of paper, twelve packages of envelopes, twelve drinking 
cups, nine cakes of toilet soap, one package of tea, one package 
of cloves, one package of corn starch, one package of linen 
thread, five papers of needles, three and a half dozen buttons, 
one cake of beeswax, one package of hooks and eyes, steel pens, 
sponges, one pair of scissors, two pounds of castile soap, five 
books and two Bibles. Collections of a like nature were made all 
over the county, especially during the last three years of the war. 
and it can readily be seen what a large amount of stores were 

The men who went from Rice county and fought in the Civil 
war deserve a lasting place in the honor and affection of the pres- 
ent generation. An effort has been made to preserve the names 
of those who, in enlisting, gave Rice county as their residence. 


The list is unfortunately not complete, though it is copied from 
the adjutant general's report. Some men from this county en- 
listed in other states, and many an honored old veteran, who is 
now numbered among the old soldiers of Rice county, came here 
after the war, his name being recorded in the records of other 
portions of the Union. 

The list of those whose names appear on the adjutant gen- 
eral's report as enlisting from this county follows : 


This regiment was organized in April, 1861, and originally 
commanded by Willis A. Gorman, of St. Paul ; ordered to Wash- 
ington, D. C, June 14, 1861. It was engaged in the following 
marches, battles, sieges and skirmishes, viz. : First Bull Run, 
July 21, 1861 ; Edwards' Ferry, October 22, 1861 ; Yorktown, May 
7, 1862; Fair Oaks, June 1, 1862; Peach Orchard and Savage 
Station, June 29, 1862 ; Glendale and Nelson's Farm, June 30, 
1862; Malvern Hill, July 1, 1862; Vienna, September 2, 1862; 
Antietam, September 17, 1862; Charlestown, Va., October 17, 
1862; first Fredericksburg, December 11, 12 and 13, 1862; second 
Fredericksburg, May 3, 1863; Gettysburg, July 2 and 3, 1863; 
and Bristow Station, October 14, 1863. The regiment was dis- 
charged at Fort Snelling, Minn., May 5, 1864. It will be seen 
by this record that the First Minnesota participated in some of 
the most important battles of the war, and was almost constantly 
active, on the march or in the field of battle, at all times reflecting 
credit upon the state that sent them forth to sustain the Union 
in its hour of peril. Major, William H. Dike. 

Company G — Lewis McKune, captain ; Nathan S. Messick, 
first lieutenant, promoted captain ; John J. McCollum, first lieu- 
tenant ; William E. Smith, second lieutenant ; Joseph H. Spencer, 
first sergeant; Charles C. Parker, sergeant; George A. Williams, 
sergeant ; John J. McCollum, sergeant ; James DeGrey, corporal ; 
Edward Tunman, corporal; John Logan, corporal; Charles E. 
Hess, corporal; Philo Hall, corporal; Frank Dickinson, corporal; 
William H. Ramsey, corporal ; Louis E. Hanneman, musician ; 
John E. Strothman, musician ; Francis Gibson, wagoner. Pri- 
vates — Adams Areman, Edward H. Basset, Henry Borchert, Jef- 
ferson G. Baker, George R. Buckmar, Fridelin Boll, Phineas L. 
Dunham, James L. Dubois, John Gatzke, Jonathan Goodrich, 
Joseph L. House, Martin Healy, Caleb B. Jackson, Benjamin H. 
Jewett, George A. Kenney, Samuel Laird, William Myers, Asa 
Miller, James L. Nichols, Edward Potter, John M. Rhorer, Lewis 
G. Reynolds. Peter W. Ramsdell, Walter S. Reed, William A. 
Rooks, Julius Schultz, Chauncey Squier, James T. Sawyer, 


Charles E. Webster, Marvin D. Andress, Dennis L. Barton, Nor- 
man B. Barron, Charles M. Benson, Joseph G. Bemis, William 
G. Coen, Charles E. Davison, Stephen E. Ferguson, Robert 
Gregg, Ezra D. Haskins, George I. Hopkins, John Holther, Albert 
Hohnson, Anthony Jones, Samuel Lilly, George Magee, John 
McKinster, Edward Z. Needham, George W. Olmstead, William 
Potter, Samuel Reynolds, James E. Russell, Benjamin Roberts, 
Neri Reed, Banteus Soule, George P. Sawyer, Almon C. Strick- 
land, Edgar Tiffany, Theodore Williams, Henry Clay Whitney, 
David Wood, Richard M. Wattles, Edward E. Verplank. 
Recruits— M. M. Curtis, William A. Brooks, Nathaniel Reed, 
G. J. McCullough, J. M. Babcock, M. Haskell, William D. Ben- 
nett, S. J. Pearl, Charles Taylor, J. W. Peaseley, S. S. Gifford, 
William Close. 

Company H — Privates — Andrew J. Brook, Newton Brown, 
Henry C. Cady, John Clausen, William Cagger, Columbus Brock, 
Franklin Bauman, Mortimer Canfield, Dennis Crandall, Samuel 
S. Cronkhite. 


This regiment was organized in July, 1861, and originally 
commanded by Horatio Van Cleve. Ordered to Louisville, Ky., 
in October, 1861, and assigned to the Army of the Ohio. It was 
engaged in the following marches, battles, skirmishes and sieges, 
viz.: Mill Spring, January 19, 1862; siege of Corinth, in April, 
1862, then transferred to the Army of the Tennessee; Bragg's 
Raid, Perryville, October 8, 1862; skirmishes of the Tullahoma 
campaign, Chickamauga, September 19 and 20, 1863; Mission 
Ridge, November 28, 1863. Veteranized in January, 1864, and 
participated in the battles and skirmishes of the Atlanta cam- 
paign, viz.: Resaca, June 14, 15 and 16, 1864; Kenesaw Mountain, 
June 27, 1864; Jonesboro; Sherman's March through Georgia 
and the Carolinas, and Bentonville, March 19, 1865. The men 
were mustered out at Louisville, Ky., and discharged at Fort 
Snclling, Minn.. July 11, 1865. This regiment covered itself with 
laurels at the battle of Mission Ridge, where they were badly 
cut up in a charge they made on the enemy's works. Few Minne- 
sota regiments, if any, performed more long and laborious 
marches than the "Bloody Second." 

Company A — Private — Appoles Owen. Company B — Pri- 
vates—James Bradley, William McStotts, Stephen R. Childs, 
George Whitehouse. Company C — Privates — George B. Newell, 
Edwin 11. Wood. Company D — Privates — Martin Kelcher, Wil- 
liam Mills, Joseph Kartack. Company F — Privates — Gabriel 
Lachapell. Company G — Privates — Joseph Clute. Company H 
— Privates — Joseph Capron, Charles llodgen. Company I — 


Privates — Ira Halladay, Frank Snyder, Edward Kellogg, Hiram 

Company K — David S. Coverdale, corporal ; promoted to 
sergeant, second lieutenant, first lieutenant and captain. Privates 
— Thomas Adams, Samuel Gould, Jonathan Poe, Andrew L. 
Emery, John W. Gould, Riley J. Phillbrook, Cyrus S. Bondurant, 
Francis Schofield. 


This regiment was organized in October, 186I, and originally 
commanded by Col. Henry C. Lester, of Winona. Ordered to 
Nashville, Tenn., in March, 1862. Captured and paroled at 
Murfreesboro in July, 1862. Ordered to St. Louis, Mo., thence to 
Minnesota. Engaged in the Indian expedition in 1862. Partici- 
pated in the battle of Wood Lake in September, 1862. Ordered 
to Little Rock, Ark., in November, 1863. Veteranized in Janu- 
ary, 1864. Engaged in battle of Fitzhugh's Woods, March 30, 
1864. Ordered to Pine Bluff, Ark., in April, I864; thence to 
Duvall's Bluff September 2, 1865. Mustered out at Duvall's 
Bluff September 2, 1865. Discharged at Fort Snelling, Minn. 

On account of the ill-advised surrender of the regiment at 
Murfreesboro, a number of the officers were dismissed from the 
service, which partially demoralized portions of it, and they 
were sent north to guard the frontier. Their lack of experience 
in the arts of war had more to do with the surrender than lack of 
courage, as the regiment subsequently proved by their behavior 
on the field of battle. 

Company B — Olin C. Rollin, second lieutenant; promoted to 
first lieutenant and captain. Privates — John Dana, Elias T. Tay- 
lor, Coleman M. Wood, William H. Wood, William L. Sloan, 
Charles Wood, Jacob Balyet. Company E — Privates — William 
A. Bowe, Edward S. Kellogg, Cicero T. Richmond, Francis J. 
Ridgeway, Thomas Sandy, Alonzo Verrill, James H. Wright, 
Eben P. Jones, Charles Russell, Stewart Richmond, Eugene H. 
Stone, Johnson R. Truaz, Edward A. Vaughn. 

Company H — David Misner, first lieutenant; promoted to 
captain, Company C, and major, First Minnesota Heavy Artillery ; 
Almon C. Strickland, first sergeant ; James M. Moran, sergeant ; 
promoted second lieutenant ; Leonard K. Flanders, corporal ; 
promoted sergeant ; John Cooper, corporal ; William T. Alvey, 
corporal ; Albert W. Stewart, wagoner. Privates — Isaac A. Bar- 
rick, Thomas Bradshaw, Thomas Carney, Donald Gray, James 
L. Haskett, William A. Hussey, Eliel W. Lawton, Michael 
Logue, Felix A. Myrick, Alexander Reed, Allen B. Donaldson, Ar- 
thur H. Erwin, William Foster, George W. Hall, Heber R. Hare, 
Solomon Crosby, Alvin Engle, John G. Conner, Adam Eckhart, 


William H. Jackson, David Lilly, George S. Bassett, Edwin A. 
Biggs, George F.rvin, Martin V. B. Hall, Shefield S. Hayward, 
William A. Lamb, Albert H. Lewis, Robert Lumsden, William 
Owen, John Slater, Malon B. Eckhart, Lovell Eaton, John Gibson, 
Asa Howe, Benjamin B. Baker, Rees Evans, Henry Taul, 
Lorenzo Dearborn, Gustaf Grandstrand, Gottfried Huser. 
Company I — Private — Alexander Reed. 


This regiment was originally commanded by Colonel J. B. 
Sanborn of St. Paul, organized December 23, 1861 ; ordered to 
Benton Barracks, Mo., April 19, 1862; assigned to army of the 
Mississippi, May 4, 1862; participated in the following marches, 
battles, sieges and skirmishes: Siege of Corinth, April, 1862; 
Iuka, September 19, 1862; Corinth, October 3 and 4, 1862; siege 
of Vicksburg, Forty Hills, Raymond, Jackson, Champion Hills, 
assault on Vicksburg, capture of Vicksburg, July 4, 1863. Trans- 
ferred from 17th to 15th corps; Mission Ridge, November 25, 
1863; veteranized, January, 1864; Altoona, October, 1864; Sher- 
man's march through Georgia and the Carolinas ; Bentonvillc, 
March 20, 1865, and Raleigh, April 14, 1865; mustered out at 
Louisville, Ky., July 19, 1865; discharged at Fort Snelling, Minn. 
The organizing members of Company C were nearly all from 
Dakota county, and mostly from the town of Lakeville, where 
the company was formed. It was the outgrowth of a home- 
guard militia that had been organized there during the summer 
of 1861. They bought their own uniforms for home-guard pur- 
poses and were furnished arms by the state. Under the call for 
600,000 volunteers in 1861, they responded almost to a man. 
retaining nearly their official organization. During the winter 
of 1861-62 they were located at Fort Ripley, and went south with 
their regiment in the spring. The comapny built up a record they 
are justly proud of and were appreciated by their commanding 
officers. After the battle of Altoona, they were complimentarily 
mentioned by General Sherman. 

Company B — Privates — Alfe Olson, Adam Pfieffcr, Andrew 
Severson, Nels Olcson, Ole Severson, Thomas Thompson. Com- 
pany C — James F. Dilly, second lieutenant. Privates — Albert 
Drinkwine, Benjamin Gypsin, William II. Hill, Charles Loyd, 
William McCrary, Joseph Eroux, Thomas R. Huggins, Moses 
Herman, William II. Long, Edward McGillis, Joseph Newell. 
Company D — Privates — George Anderson, Thomas Reillv, Remi 
Crapeau. Company E — Privates — John Conrad, Stephen E, 
Birch, Fdwin Waller, Daniel N'evin, George 1 1 . Thurston. Georg< 


F. Birch. Company F — Privates — Charles Pillar, Charles F. Bey- 
tien, Charles Scofield. 

Company I — John Parker, captain; promoted major; Henry 
Piatt, first lieutenant; promoted captain; Edwin O. Chapman, 
first sergeant; promoted second lieutenant; Clark Turner, ser- 
geant ; promoted second and first lieutenant ; Levi B. Aldrich, 
sergeant ; Henry Davis, corporal ; John D. Hunt, corporal ; pro- 
moter first lieutenant; David A. Temple, corporal ; Joseph Will- 
iams, corporal ; promoted sergeant and first lieutenant. Privates 
— Ira C. Aldrich, Balzer Bower, John W. Davey, Thomas C. Fer- 
guson, William R. Gilman, Charles P. Hagstrom, Charles O. 
Healey, Simon Kreger, Nels Nelson, John G. Russell, John 
Avery, James H. Cronkhite, William W. Davis, Edward A. Gor- 
ser, Cornelius Hull, Joseph Hershey, Stephen N. Johnson, Hiram 
H. Marcyes, Sewal G. Randall, George W. Reinoehl, Edward 
Reble, August H. Thruen, George Schrauth, Mark Wells. 

Company K — Private — John Powers. 


This regiment was organized in May, 1862, and originally 
commanded by Col. Rudolph Borgesrode, of Shakopee. Ordered 
to Pittsburg Landing, May 9, 1862, leaving a detachment of three 
companies in Minnesota, garrisoning frontier posts. Partici- 
pated in the following marches, battles, sieges and skirmishes: 
Siege of Corinth, April and May, 1862. The detachment in Min- 
nesota engaged with the Indians at Redwood, Minn., August 18, 
1862, and siege of Fort Ridgely, August 20, 21 and 22, 1862; 
Fort Abercrombie, Dakota Territory, in August, 1862. The regi- 
ment was assigned to the Sixteenth Army Corps and engaged in 
the battle of Iuka, September 18, 1862, and at Corinth, October 
3 and 4, 1862; Jackson, May 14, 1863; and the siege of Vicks- 
burg; assault of Vicksburg, May 22, 1863; Mechanicsburg, June 
3, 1863; Richmond, June 15, 1863; Fort De Rusrey, La., March 
14, 1864; Red River expedition in March, April and May, 1864; 
Lake Chicot, June 6, 1864, and Tupelo in June, 1864. Veteran- 
ized in July, 1864; Abbeyville, August 23, 1864; marched in 
September, 1864, from Brownsville, Ark., to Cape Girardeau, 
Mo., thence by boat to Jefferson City ; thence to Kansas state 
line ; thence to St. Louis, Mo. ; ordered to Nashville, November, 
1864; battle of Nashville, December 15 and 16, 1864; Spanish 
Fort and Fort Blakely in April, 1865; mustered out at Demopo- 
Iis, Ala., September 6, 1865, and discharged at Fort Snelling, 
Minn. It will be seen by the above record this regiment was in 
active service, yet comparatively very few were killed in battle. 

Company A — Privates — Jacob Haines, David M. Strong, John 


Sicler. Company C — Privates — Edward Berg, Halver Elefson, 
Edward Roth, Lyman H. Decker, Frederick Knudson. Company 
G — Private — Jeremiah Ryan. Company I — Michael Cosgrove, 
corporal. Private — Melvin O. Dutton. Company K — Thomas 
Tierney, corporal ; promoted sergeant. 


This regiment was organized in August, 1862, and originally 
commanded by Col. William Crooks, of St. Paul. Ordered upon 
the Indian expedition of 1862. A detachment of 200 from this 
regiment was engaged in the battle of Birch Coolie, September 2, 
1862. The regiment participated in the battle of Wood Lake. 
September 22, 1862. From November, 1862, until May, 1863, 
the regiment was engaged in garrisoning frontier posts. Ordered 
then to take part in the Indian expedition and were engaged with 
the Indians July 24, 26, 28, 30 and 31, 1863. Stationed at frontier 
posts from September 18, 1863, to June 5, 1864, when they were 
ordered to Helena, Ark., and to St. Louis in November, 1864; 
thence to New Orleans in January, 1865, and assigned to the 
Sixteenth Army Corps. Participated in the engagements of 
Spanish Fort and Fort Blakely in April, 1865. Discharged at 
Fort Snelling, Minn., August 19, 1865. 

Company C — C. P. McAlexander, second lieutenant; Robert 
R. Hutchinson, first sergeant; promoted second lieutenant, first 
lieutenant and captain ; Alexander M. Portman, sergeant ; Thomas 
Watts, corporal ; promoted sergeant ; John W. Gould, corporal ; 
Amasa Closson, corporal ; John F. McClintock, corporal ; John 
Hutchinson, corporal; promoted sergeant and second lieutenant; 
Charles Hetherington, corporal ; promoted sergeant; Samuel T. 
Webster, musician; Alexander M. Thompson, musician; Aron 
M. Comey, wagoner; Stephen Allen, Private; promoted corporal; 
Myron Bates, Clinton L. Babcock, Andrew O. Chapin. Pri- 
vates — Lewis Beerman, George Beerman, Chester T. Boss, 
David E. Berdan, Thomas Barnes, Schuyler Closson, William S. 
Currcn, John H. Daner, Wellington H. Emery, George Fogg, 
August Beerman, James F. Boss, Chester F. Boss. John D. 
Brown, Johial W. Boyd. Joseph Closson, Andrew O. Chapin, 
Leonidas H. Dunn, Benjamin Davison, James Emerson, Sylves- 
ter S. Glidden, William Goudy, Joel M. Hart. Elisha C. King, 
John D. Plummer, James R. Rice, William 11. Burroughs, Reuben 
B. Dean, Samuel T. Webster, William A. Sheperd, Chauncey 
Swar, Samuel Main, William Robinson, George W. Robin- 
son, Andrew R. Roberts, Theodore II. Sanderson, William V. 
Stone, Chauncey Swar, Richard Stoplev, Thomas F. Talbot, 
Daniel B. Turner, Thomas C. Brown, William C. Ilavcock, Wil- 


liam Hubbard, Charles Peterson, Hiram M. Powers, George W. 
Searle, Frank T. Hutchinson, Jeremiah B. Jones, John Merkel, 
William E. Poe, Calvin Ripley, John W. Richey, William A. 
Shepard, Hugh Smith, Newel Summer, Joseph W. Sargent, 
Horace C. Stranahan, Alexander V. Tharp, Benjamin W. Viles, 
John Daly, Daniel C. Fitsimmons, Edward P. Kermott, Cornelius 
D. Personious, James R. Rice, Joseph O. Sargent, Zebulon D. 
Sargent, Aaron L. Carney. 

Company D — Privates — Wilbur B. Green, Isaiah Judd, Lewis 
Sanford, William H. Bush, John W. Brown, John Boshardt, 
Thomas A. Fisher, Charles H. Jordan, Charles H. Mulliner, 
Josiah Richardson, Ira Sanford, John Huftellen, William T. 
Kiekenapp, Oliver T. Sanford, David C. Brown, Charles A. 
Cates, Nelson T. Derby, Peter Filbert, Samuel Layman, William 
Layman, John Roth, Michael Wolf. Company I — Private — 
Rudolph Roseman. 


This regiment was originally commanded by Col. Stephen 
Miller of St. Paul, afterwards governor of the state. It was or- 
ganized in August, 1862, and ordered upon the Indian expedition 
that year, and engaged in the battle of Wood Lake, Minn. The 
regiment was stationed at frontier posts until May, 1863, when it 
was ordered upon the Indian expedition in the West under Gen- 
eral Sibley, and was engaged in battle with the Indians July 24, 
26, 28, 30 and 31 of that year. They reurned from this expedi- 
tion and were ordered to St. Louis, Mo., Oct. 7, 1863 ; thence to 
Paducah, Ky., in April, 1864; thence to Memphis, Tenn., and as- 
signed to the 16th army corps, in June, 1864. The regiment parti- 
cipated in the following marches, battles, sieges and skirmishes: 
Tupelo, in July, 1864; Tallahatchie, Aug. 7 and 8, 1864; the 
march in pursuit of Price from Brownsville, Ark., to Cape Girar- 
deau ; thence to St. Louis, Mo. ; in the battles of Nashville, Tenn., 
Dec. 15 and 16, 1864; Spanish Fort and Fort Blakely, in April, 
1865. The discharge of the regiment took place at Fort Snelling, 
Minn., Aug. 16, 1865. 

Company A — Chancellor Cutler, captain ; Loel B. Hoag, first 
lieutenant ; promoted captain ; Alpheus C. Barrack, second lieu- 
tenant ; George W. Butterfield, first sergeant ; William W. Willis, 
sergeant; promoted second lieutenant; Daniel Goodhue, sergeant; 
promoted first lieutenant; Louis Hanneman, sergeant; promoted 
second lieutenant; Charles T. Anderson, sergeant; Richard C. 
Ross, corporal ; George L. Pvendall, corporal ; Edwin Gillett, 
corporal ; Daniel O. Searle, corporal ; Lyman B. Snow, corporal ; 
Duren F. Kelly, corporal ; Madison R. Ransom, corporal ; Henry 
Marsh, corporal ; Michael Anderson, musician ; Oscar T. Webster, 


musician; William N. Watson, Wagoner; Samuel F. Averill, 
private; promoted corporal and sergeant. Privates — Myron F. 
Austin, Ira Alexander, Henry M. Barrett, Alexander Bates, 
Charles Bingham, Hugh Boardman, John Beardsley, John A. 
Bond, Amos H. Bice, Alexander Clark, Lemuel Cone, Alsin A. 
Calins, Michael Caffrey, Elijah R. Carpenter, Peter Colburn, 
George Deek, Frederick Deffenbecker, Calvin Daniels, Philo H. 
Engelsby, Joseph Fredenburg, Michael Fitzgerald, Joseph Ford, 
Albert Fredenburg, Charles E. Frink, Henry Finley, Daniel 
Goodsell, William F. Gessner, Franklin Gowen, Daniel T. Hukey, 
Charles H. Holt, Albert T. Hancke, John R. Horner, Silas Judd, 
Frank L. Kendall, Elliot A. Knowlton, Mahalon Lockwood. Peter 
W. DeLancy, John Mullen, Peter Morgan, Joseph Miner, William 
H. McDonald, Horation P. Moore, James H. Mountain, William 
Marshall, Edward McKenzie, Daniel A. Park, Moses C. Peasly, 
Peter W. Ramsdale, William D. Rounce, Philip Rich, Andrew 
Robinson, Eric H. Rinde, William K. Ross, William W. Side- 
veil, Chauncey R. Sackett, Amasiah Slocum, Peter Simon, John 
W. Thompson, George R. Terry, Alvin B. Thorp, Albert Tripp, 
Charles Viercant, William J. Wemple, Roland Weeks, George 
Wells, Melvin Cushman, Edward F. Cosert, Ralph L. Dorrence, 
Robert Dilley, Christian Dolymer, James H. Daly, Edwin R. 
Hazelton, Henry M. Hazelton, William Hunter, Anthony Han- 
son, Isaac Johnson, Franklin Groome, Knud Knudson, Stewart 
M. Lamon, William Damon, Hadley Oelson, Henry Pratt, 
Charles M. Phipps, Calvin Rank, George Robinson, Howard L. 
Swain, Jacob Simons, Jacob Winter, John W. Moore. 


This regiment was organized Aug. 1, 1862, and originally 
commanded by Col. Minor T. Thomas, of Stillwater. Minn. It 
was stationed at frontier posts until May, 18<>4. when it was or 
dercd upon the Indian expedition. It was engaged in the follow- 
ing battles, sieges, skirmishes and marches: Tah-cha-O-ku-tu, 
July 28, 1864; Little Missouri, battle of the Cedars. Wilkinson's 
Pike, Dec. 7. ISM. near M tirfreesboro, Dec. 8,1864, and Overall's 
creek. Ordered to Clifton, Tenn., thence t<> Cincinnati, thence to 
Washington, i Inner in Newbern, X. C. : at the battle of Kingston, 
March 8, 9, and L0, 1865. The men were mustered out at Char- 
lotte \\ C, July 11, 1865, and discharged at Fort Snelling, Minn. 

George W. Butterfield, adjutant; Lauren Armsby, chaplain. 

Company B — George F. Pettitt, captain; Mile- Hollister, first 
lieutenant; William Shaw, second lieuenant; Lampson Pence, 
first sergeant ; John 11 Pai on, sergeant; Andrew King, sergeant ; 
William S. Sargeant, ergeant; Benjamin F, Pierce, sergeant; 


John Calvin, corporal ; John Gwathmy, corporal ; Benjamin F. 
Buck, corporal; William Chase, corporal; Isaac N. Anderson, 
corporal ; James A. Morgan, corporal ; Edward S. Kellogg, 
corporal ; Andrew B. Cowen, corporal ; Harmon Shank, musician; 
Thomas G. Crump, musician ; Jonothan Morris, wagoner. Pri- 
vates — Dexter B. Anderson, Heinrich Achterkisch, Toussaint 
Barrie, Benjamin A. Clemons, Chauncey C. Cole, Joseph Cluka, 
Dewitt C. Coats, Moses Click, William Deike, Henry A. Dorn, 
Cornelius Denman, Norman B. Florer, Norris N. Graves, Henry 
Heinneman, Isaac Hand, William J. Haukins, David M. Jones, 
Andrew LaBarge, Jr. ; Allen D. Morgan, Hanson Mills, Joseph 
Milliron, Patrick Mathews, Joseph Anderson, Columbus C. Bab- 
cock, Eli A. Bailey, Theodore Creach, Edward H. Cutts, Daniel 
L. Clemmer, Otis N. Castle, John M. Chapin, William H. Davey, 
Henry Dierkin, Stephen G. Flanders, William M. Green, John 
Gillon, Benjamin Hare, John Hill, Ernst Heideman, Milo F. 
Jacobs, Charles R. Louch, Richard J. Miller, William L. T. 
Meyer, Edward McCartney, George W. Marcyes, Ephraim C. 
Moodey, Ezra Nichols, Watts A. Pye, Charles Powell, George 
W. Peterson, Henry Peipho, Newton S. Parker, Frederick Roth, 
Reuben W. Russ, Joseph W. Richardson, David Reed, Frederick 
Schwake, Adelbert W. Tenny, Truman P. Town, John J. Van 
Saun, Harrison Wolleat, Mark Wells, Warner Youells, Thomas 
Carpenter, F. B. Hetherinton, John B. Milliron, Michael B. 
Roberds, Ichabod H. Tower, John S. McCartney, Joseph C. Mold, 
Charles Osterhout, Orient Pond, Edward G. Paterson, Anthony 
W. Pool, George G. Peck, Patrick Reardon, Alex. H. Ridgeway, 
Harvey T. Rawson, John H. Reamer, Winfield S. Snyder, Wells 
Tuman, Abraham Tope, Henry Theden, Edward Van Saun, 
William Wolleat, Amplias G. Ward, Alonzo Burch, James 
Edmonds, Seymour S. Sloan, Timothy I. Van Saun. 

Company F — Privates — George W. Sackell, Quincy C. 


The regiment was organized in August, 1862, and originally 
commanded by Col. James H. Baker, of Mankato. It was sta- 
tioned at frontier posts until June, 1863, when it was ordered 
upon the Indian expedition. Engaged with the Indians Julv 24, 
26, 28, 30 and 31, 1863. Ordered to St. Louis, Mo., in October, 
1863; thence to Columbus, Ky., in April, 1864; thence to Mem- 
phis, Tenn., in June, 1864, and assigned to the Sixteenth Army 
Corps. Participated in the following marches, battles, sieges and 
skirmishes: battle of Tupelo, July 13, 1864; Oxford expedition, 
August, 1864; march in pursuit of Price, from Brownsville, Ark., 
to Cape Girardeau ; thence by boat to Jefferson City ; thence to 


Kansas line; thence to St. Louis, Mo.; battles of Nashville, 
Tenn., December 15 and 16, 1864; Spanish Fort and Fort Blakely, 
April, 1865. The regiment was discharged at Fort Snelling, 
August 19, 1865. 

Tenth Regiment Infantry — Michael Cook, major; Elden N. 
Leavens, quartermaster. 

Company C — Dennis Cavanaugh, captain. Company D — Pri- 
vate — Stephen W. Carpenter. Company E — Privates — John W. 
Holmes, Uriah Judd, John W. Hoover, Ashley Forgelson. 

Company H — Dennis Cavanaugh, first lieutenant; Dennis 
McCarthy, second lieutenant; Michael Jeffers, first sergeant; 
Patrick Byrne, sergeant ; Andrew Deverneaux, sergeant ; James 
O'Neill, corporal; Robert Hunt, corporal; Thomas Murphy, 
wagoner. Privates — John Buckley, Patrick Cudmore, Thomas 
P. Conaghty, Christopher Dardis, Christopher Byrne, John Col- 
lins, John Callaghn, Edward Fox, Patrick Harris, Hamilton 
Logue, Antoine LaDuke, Thomas McManus, Hugh McXeal, 
Thomas Powers, Prudent Quenett, Michael Roach, Peter Rob- 
beault, David Tierny, John Whalen, James Bradley, Lawrence 
Connor, John Dixon, Michael Foy, Dennis Gregg, Anthony Jor- 
dan, Thomas Meagher, Daniel McEntire, Samuel Radabaugh, 
John Smith, Michael Hanley, John Leo, Patrick McNulty, 
Thomas McLaughlin, John Mulgrew, Eneas S. Peat, Thomas 
Ryan, Patrick O'Brien, Patrick J. Smith, Jacob Tope, John 
Bohan, Thomas Conniff, Alex. G. Caldwell, Joseph A. Fraybold, 
Henry Gorman, Thomas Hctherington, Patrick McGrath, Flor- 
ence McCarthy, Michael Nagle, John Stokes. 


This regiment was organized in August. 1864, and originally 
commanded by Col. James Gilfillan, of St. Paul. 

It was principally engaged in guard duty. It was first ordered 
to Nashville, Tenn.. and engaged in guarding the railroad be- 
tween that city and Louisville, untfl mustered out June 26, 1865. 

Company D — Loren Webb, captain ; C. C. P. Alexander, first 


This battalion originally consisted of two companies, organ- 
ized from the re-enlisted veterans, stay-over men, and recruits of 
(lie First Regiment, Minnesota Infantrj Volunteers. It was 
originally commanded b) Col. Mark W. Downie, of Stillwater. 
Minn. Ordered to Washington, 1 >. (".. May. 1864; joined the 
army of the Potomac June 10, 1864. Participated in the follow- 
ing engagements, viz.: Petersburg, Va., June is, 1864; Jerusa- 


lem Plank Road, Va., August 25, 1864; Hatcher's Run, Va., July 
27, 1864; Deep Bottom, Va., August 14, 1864; Reams' Station, 
Va., August 25, 1864; Hatcher's Run, Va., February 5, 1865. 
Company C joined March 27, 1865. Took active part in cam- 
paign commencing March 28, 1865, resulting in the capture of 
Petersburg, Va., April 2, 1865, and the surrender of Lee's army, 
April 9, 1865. Four new companies joined at Berksville, Va., in 
April, 1865. Marched from Berksville, Va., to Washington, D. C, 
in May, 1865. 

Two new companies joined at Washington ; ordered to Louis- 
ville, Ky., in June, 1865 ; mustered out at Jeffersonville, Ind., 
July 14, 1865, and discharged at Fort Snelling, Minn., July 25, 

Company A — Charles C. Parker, second lieutenant. Com- 
pany H — Philander C. Seeley. 


This regiment was organized in April, 1865, and originally 
commanded by Col. William Colville, of Red Wing; ordered to 
Chattanooga, Tenn., and stationed at that point until mustered 
out of regiment in September, 1865. 

Charles B. Jackson, commodore sergeant. Company C — 
George L. Porter, captain. Privates — Thomas Devine, Daniel 
Heffelson, William Haney, Thomas Hope, James H. Knights, 
Cornelius Mahony, Winfield J. Sargent, Joseph Gilsoul, Charles 
Hoffer, Holms B. Higgins, Thomas Jeffers, George W. Kenyon, 
James H. Miller. Company H — Privates — Martin Bandelin, 
Augusta Hull, Gordon Smith, Edward Grulk, Peter A. John- 
son, William H. Taylor. Company L — John C. Turner, first 


Organized in March, 1863, and originally commanded by Col. 
Samuel McPhail, of Caledonia, Houston county. Stationed 
among frontier posts until May, 1863, when they were ordered 
upon the Indian expedition. Engaged with the Indians July 24, 
26, 28, 30 and 31, 1863. Stationed at frontier posts upon the 
return of the expedition until mustered out. Mustered out by 
companies, between October 1, 1863, and December 30, 1863. 

Company A — John Wiggle, sergeant. Privates — William 
Campbell, George R. Page, Edward Campbell, Peter Stiren. 
Company F — Private — Apollo Owen. 

Company H — Charles W. Cromwell, first lieutenant; O. D. 
Brown, second lieutenant ; Enoch C. Cowan, first sergeant ; Asa 
Smith, second sergeant; John E. Tuttle, sergeant; Arthur Mc- 


Millan, sergeant; Silas C. Olmsted, corporal; Charles H. Ken- 
ney, corporal ; James L. Christie, corporal. Privates — Josiah 
Bailey, George H. Byfield, Vincent K. Carter, Timothy Collins, 
Leonard J. Flanders, Francis B. Hetherington, Ira Hulse, Ralph 
H. Kenney, Charles A. Manncy, Charles H. Martin, J. M. Mills, 
James G. B. Moses, Charles H. Mulliner, John Oleson, Frank G. 
Peace, William D. Tucker, James W. Roberts, William Beckley, 
Carson C. Carr, Leroy S. Clemons, Antoine Fisher, Orlando G. 
Hatheway, Harrison Harles, Osman B. Jacobs, Edelbert Love- 
land, William P. Manney, Charles W. Marks, Charles Y. Moses, 
William S. Moses, John W. Murtagh, Myron Page, William L. 
Sargent, William J. Wilkins, Samuel B. Walker. 


Originally commanded by Maj. Alfred B. Brackett, of St. 
Paul, and, as originally organized, was composed of the First, 
Second and Third Companies, and organized in October and 
November, 1861. Ordered to Benton barracks, Mo., in Decem- 
ber, 1861. Assigned to a regiment called Curtis Horse; ordered 
to Fort Henry, Tenn., in February, 1862; name of regiment 
changed to Fifth Iowa Cavalry in April, 1862. Companies G, D 
and K ; engaged in siege of Corinth in April, 1862 ; ordered to 
Fort Heiman, Tenn., in August, 1862; veteranized in February, 
1864; ordered to the Department of the Northwest in 1864; 
ordered upon Indian expedition ; engaged with the Indians July 
28 and in August, 1864; mustered out by companies, between 
May and June, 1866. 

Company A — Herman Wedekuper, corporal. Company B — 
Private — Joseph R. Donaldson. Company C — Private — James 


Organized July 20, 1863, and originally commanded by Maj. 
E. A. C. Hatch, of St. Paul. Ordered to Pembina, D. T., in 
October, 1863. Ordered to Fort Abercrombie, D. T., in May, 
1864, and stationed there until mustered out. Mustered out by 
companies, from April to June, 1866. 

Company A — John W. W. Poison, corporal; Seth C. Kelley, 
blacksmith. Privates — Charles M. Stowe, John Kelly. Com- 
pany C — Privates — Michael Cosgrovc, James O'Neill. Company 
F — Private — William Dawney. 


Organized in Jan., 1864, and originally commanded by Col. 
Robert N. McLaren, of Red Wing. Ordered upon Indian ex- 
pedition in May. 1864. Kngagcd with the Indians. July 28, 1S(>4, 


and Aug. 1864. Stationed at frontier posts until muster out of 
regiment by companies, between Nov., 1865, and June, 1866. 

Company A — Private — Henry Hanson. Company B — Private 
— Robert S. Keene. Company D — Private — William J. Wilkins. 
Company E — Privates — Albert F. Thielbar, Peter E. Wise, Isaac 
M. Taylor. Company G — Henry W. Bingham, first lieutenant; 
promoted captain; Theron F. Carr, sergeant; Carson C. Carr, 
corporal. Privates — Halver Blande, John Conley, William L. 
Hoover, George Shepard, Byron F. Carr, William Dwyer, John 
O'Neill, Elijah B. Sperry, Jacob H. Austin. Company H — Pri- 
vates — Stanley Barlow, Alvah M. Olin. Company K — Privates — 
Solomon Bodle. 

First Battery Light Artillery — Privates — Willard Sproul, 
Ambrose Krech. 

Second Battery Light Artillery — Privates — William Costello, 
John Craren, James Hunter, Ingrebeth Oleson, Charles L. Nog- 
gle, Joseph L. Sargent, Edward W. Vaughn, Lewis Y. Sargent, 
Thomas Robb. 

Third Battery Light Artillery— John C. Whipple, first lieu- 
tenant — Privates — George L. Kenyon, Arthur McCarger, William 
Finlayson, Hiram K. Wilder. 

Second Company Sharp-shooters — Charles L. Eldridge, cor- 
poral. Privates — Tens. T. Dahle, Author A. Flem, Andrew J. 
Lockren, Halver H. Quil, Finger Fingalson, Christ Hanson, 
Harry Magon, Jnets Fingalson. 



Important Happenings — Mostly in Faribault — the Years 1857- 
1879 — Disasters, Deaths, Organizations, Churches and 

The real story of the settlement of Rice county dates from 
1853. The story of the early coming of the whites, and the princi- 
pal events of the earliest days have been told in the history of 
the various townships. In 1857, the towns and villages were well 
on the start toward that prosperity that has since marked their 
history. In this chapter the managers of this publication have en- 
deavored to trace the principal events in the history of the 
county from 1857 to 1879, that are not recorded elsewhere. The 
stirring events of the Civil war are purposely omitted from this 
list. The scenes common throughout the country, the equipping 
and enlisting of companies, the eager waiting for news, the hard- 
ships, the anxiety, the heart breaks and heart aches, the self 
sacrifice and devotion of the people at large were all felt and 
witnessed in Rice county. The story of Rice county in the war 
is told elsewhere in a chapter edited by the Hon. James J. 
Hunter. It will be noted that in recording the early events, the 
preponderance of happenings are those of Faribault. Faribault 
being the county seat, and the people of the county being closely 
linked with this city makes its events of interest to the people of 
the county at large. 

1857. On January 7 the Congregational church at Faribault 
was dedicated, and Rev. Lauren Armstrong was installed as 
pastor of the church. Those assisting were, Rev. Cressey, of 
Cannon City ; Rev. Barnes, of Cannon Falls ; and Rev. Secombe. 
The people adhering to this faith exhibited great energy in thus 
providing, at such an early day, for their spiritual wants. 

The land office was removed to Faribault here from Winona 
some time toward the last of January. The teams were eighl 
days on the road with documents. 

On Fcbruarv _'4. three young men from Faribault started 
on a drive to Cannon Lake, and on their way were hailed by a 
young Indian with a gun, who asked for a ride, and without 
slacking up they beckoned him to "come on.'* which lie did. As 
he reached the carriage, and was about clambering in, his musket 



was discharged, and the ball penetrated the arm of one of the 
young men, Godfrey Xavier, breaking the bone above the elbow, 
and severing an artery. The Indian was arrested, but on an ex- 
amination the accidental character of the shooting was shown, 
and he was discharged. 

In February, two children of Frederick Faribault, residing in 
an addition to the city of Faribault, while he was away from 
home, were burned to death in the house, which was consumed, it 
having caught or been set on fire, the other members of the fam- 
ily escaping with difficulty, one or two of them being seriously 
burned. The first quarterly returns of the Faribault postoffice foot- 
ed up to $246 on letters alone. At the election for delegates to the 
Constitutional Convention, the whole number of votes cast was 
1,089. Mr. Tillotson was appointed receiver of the land office in 
place of L. D. Smith, who had resigned. Business at the land office 
for a single month, ending on June 19, 1857, was as follows: Acres 
located, 118,178; with land warrants, 106,380; with cash, 11,798. 
The taxable property in Faribault, returned on January 1, 1856, 
was $613,364, and the tax assessed was $613.36, or one per cent. 
The mail matter received and sent at the Faribault postoffice 
in 1857 averaged from 1,800 to 2,000 pieces a week, which was 
quite a jump from two pieces in 1853. Judge H. C. Lowell was 
appointed register of the land office this year. A surveying party 
on a projected line of railroad reached Faribault in June. During 
the summer a plank road was built between Faribault and Cannon 
City. In July, McCarn & Co. put on a new stage line to Hastings. 
The first line was run by White, and afterward by Walker, the 
great frontier stage driver. Clark and Weld got their saw mill 
running in Faribault in July. The first Saturday in August the 
bell of the Congregational church was hung in Faribault. It 
weighed 1,000 pounds, and was claimed to be the first bell of 
which there is a large family, west of the Mississippi. In 1875, 
the grasshoppers came in the vicinity of the county, and excited 
considerable curiosity, not unmingled with alarm. On September 
15 a meeting was held in Faribault to organize a cemetery asso- 
ciation. A. J. Tanner was the chairman ; E. P. Mills, William 
Thoter, Charles Wood, R. A. Mott, E. D. Gifford, G. W. Balch, 
Elder L. S. Pease, H. Riedell, Arch. Gibson, Charles Williams, 
Thomas S. Buckham, and others, were interested in the 

The first movement to establish an institution of learning 
in Faribault was in September, by a committee consisting of 
Rev. Solon W. Manney, Rev. E. Steele Peake. Messrs. Lloyd and 
Breck. At this meeting Messrs. Dike, Mott, Faribault, Paquin. 
and Boardman were designated to receive subscriptions of land 
or money. 


There was a robbery of the land office at Faribault, in Septem- 
ber of warrants to the amount of $40,000. They were, however, 
recovered, except four from the abstractor, Mason B. Clark, a 
postmaster, who lived at Sacramento, a place sixty miles west 
of Red Wing. The Catholic church at Faribault was burned on 
October 8. The structure had cost about $1,000. Early in the 
winter a literary association was organized at Faribault, Charles 
Williams was the president, and the other officers were, H. E. 
Barron, G. W. Jacobs, G. E. Cole, H. Chaffer, T. S. Buckham. 
The meeting served to make the residents acquainted with each 
other, and, to a certain extent, to reveal the mental calibre of 
those who participated in the exercises. The estimated improve- 
ments of the city of Faribault in 1857, amounted to $100,000. 

1858. The leading men of the county early saw the necessity 
of encouraging the cultivation of the best in all departments of 
agriculture, and as early as January 22, 1858, met for the purpose 
of organizing; and about the same time the young men of Fari- 
bault organized a students' literary association, which served its 
purpose in an admirable way. Faribault Mills, Warner & Buck- 
hout, were burned on February 5, and in March Mr. Sentill's mill 
in Faribault, was also burned. Soon after another mill burst a 
boiler. Graham's mill at Faribault, was burned on February 22, 
and also another on East Prairie, which was a serious loss to 
the whole community as well as to the owners. Dr. Charles 
Jewett, of Faribault really, although his farm was in Warsaw, 
in the winter of 1858, went east and gave lyceum lectures on the 
West, and Minnesota in particular, and also wrote numerous 
articles showing the especial advantages of this location, which, 
without doubt, was the direst means of keeping the stream of 
emigration flowing in this direction, with a good class of citizens. 
A ladies' Literary Association was organized in Faribault on 
February 7. The officers were: President. Mrs. H. A. Pratt; 
vice-president, Mrs. T. S. Buckham ; recording secretary, Ada 
F. Miller; corresponding secretary, Nellie Mott ; treasurer, Mrs, 
Hudson Wilson ; executive committee, E. Whitney, Mrs. George 
B. Whipple, Mrs. A. F. Haven, and Mrs. J. H. Winter. On May 
15, a meeting was held to see about organizing an Episcopal 
University. A lodge of Good Templars was instituted at Fari- 
bault on May 13, by Rev. Quigley, with twenty-seven charter 
members. Messrs. Judd & Dike put up a barrel factory at 

1859-1860. So far as is known, no Rice county newspapers 
for these two years have been preserved. 

1861. June 5, Alexander Faribault commenced operation-- en 
a new flour mill on Straight river. The liberty pole in East 
Prairieville halyards were cut, causing considerable excitement. 


June 12, a barrel factory started. July 3, a very large and brilliant 
comet was noticed in the heavens to the west. The foundation 
for the Batchelder building at Faribault was finished. July 4, 
the celebration at Warsaw and a drill by the Warsaw company. 
June 31, report received from the battle of Bull Run, stated that 
Capt. Lewis McKune, privates Asia Miller, Merrick R. Patten, 
Chauncey Squires and William Mires of Company G, First Minn., 
were killed. The fight took place July 21. August 7, citizens of 
East Prairieville contributed $30.65 for the army hospital fund. 
September 3, county union convention was held in Faribault. 
Cromwell's foundry at Faribault was in full operation. Septem- 
ber 27, the third annual fair of Rice county was held. October 
10, the Warsaw rifles and the Freeborn county rangers passed 
through Faribault on their way to Fort Snelling. October 17, 
the Faribault Ladies' Aid Society organized. October 30, grocery 
store opened in Faribault by Graham. December 18, Batchelder 
block completed. December 25, Thayer and Russell sold the 
Boston store to Deike, Gilmore, Judd and Brown. 

1862. Leander Gagne, while at work on the roof of a church 
at Faribault, on June 18, fell a distance of thirty feet, and was 
instantly killed. The Baptist church at Faribault was built in 
this year. The fourth of July was celebrated in Faribault in the 
time-honored way, with Hon. James W. Taylor as the orator of 
the day. On July 7, there was a violent storm in Faribault and 
vicinity, doing great damage in its track. A daily mail was put 
on between Owatonna and St. Paul, via Faribault, in the summer 
of this year. The saw and grist mill of Morris & Melhorn, on 
the Cannon river, was destroyed by fire on Wednesday morning, 
November 26. This was the second mill burned there. 

1863. Faribault had a tannery started by Mr. O'Brien. A 
brewery also went up that year. The Fourth of July was duly 

1864. The Congregational church at Faribault was com- 
menced in the summer of this year. An Episcopal church was 
completed at Faribault during the year. Early in the sixties, 
ginseng, an aromatic tonic root, exported to China, and used by 
the Orientals as a remedial preparation, began to be extensively 
gathered, as it is found indigenous to certain localities here. Ten 
dollars a day or more was often made by a single individual. On 
February 23 a fatal accident happened to Charles Babcock, who 
was caught in the mill of Dike & Co., at Faribault, and mangled 
in such a manner that he died in a few days. The first national 
bank was started in Faribault in May of 1864. When the cars 
began running, in 1864, a new stage route to connect with the 
trains was started by Burbank & Co., which reduced the staging 


1865. The census of Faribault was 2,339. Of these 1,216 
were males, and 1,123 females. There were sixty-nine soldiers 
in the service at that time. In 1860 the population was 1,520. 
The Sisters of St. Clara Benton, five in number, arrived in Fari- 
bault in August to establish a school. The Central Minnesota 
Railroad got in operation as far as Northfield in September. 
During the year 1865 sixty buildings went up in Faribault. 

1866. In the winter of this year the demand for more and bet- 
ter buildings was quite urgent. The Good Templars reorganized 
at Faribault on January 22, with a good list of charter members 
and capable officers. There was a legislative excursion to Fari- 
bault in the fall. Governor Marshall and other state officers were 
present. It was in the interest of the educational institutions. 
In April a meeting was held to see about the establishment of 
a Congregational college, which was subsequently located in 
Northfield. The corner-stone of the Shattuck grammar school 
at Faribault was laid with appropriate ceremonies on July 26. 
The total number of farms under cultivation in Rice county was 
1,200. Number of sheep, 16,947. St. Mary's Hall was opened at 
Faribault, October 31. 

1867. There were thirty-eight Sioux remaining in Faribault 
in July, when they were removed to their reservation in Ne- 
braska by Rev. S. D. Henderson, the agent for the purpose. The 
amount of building in Faribault this year was $178,000. 

1868. The Shattuck grammar school building, which was 
erected in 1866, at Faribault, was burned on January 24. The 
citizens had a meeting on January 24, to see about having a city 
charter for Faribault. The chairman of the meeting was L. 
Dearborn; the secretary, R. H. L. Jewett. A committee, con- 
sisting of T. S. Buckham, Luke Nutting, George W. Batchelder, 
Charles Wood and T. B. Clement, was appointed, to report at a 
subsequent meeting. On January 3, the Minnesota Fruit Grow- 
ers' Association met at Faribault. A Board of Trade was organ- 
ized in August, at Faribault, with the following officers: Presi- 
dent, T. B. Clement: vice-president, W. W. Knapp; treasurer, 
Hudson Wilson; secretary, Thomas Mee ; corresponding secre- 
tary, G. F. Batchelder; directors, D. O'Brien. W. II. Dike. Moses 
Cole and others. The Shattuck school at Faribault was formally 
reopened in October. The old school house in Faribault was sold 
this year for $356, as there was no further public use for the 
building. The new school house was completed in September, 
at a cost of $23,190. The population of Faribault was Mated to 
be 3.424. 

1869. Rev. Dr. S. W. Manny, who was connected with the 
Seabury mission, died. Lieut. John (.'. Whipple died February 
5, 1869. lie was at Fort Ridgely at the time of the Indian mas- 


sacre. Lieutenant Whipple was born September 12, 1823, near 
the corners of New York, Massachusetts and Vermont. When 
quite young he went on a whaling voyage, and was treated with 
such cruelty by his brutal captain that he ran away, and among 
savages had many thrilling adventures. He was a first lieutenant 
in the Thirtieth Minnesota Volunteer Infantry, was a brave offi- 
cer, and was buried with Masonic honors. About this time 
Taope, a noted red man, started for the happy hunting grounds. 
He was always friendly with the whites. A plow and agricul- 
tural implement factory was started in Faribault this year. On 
June 14, Fleckenstein's brewery was burned. The Cathedral of 
Our Merciful Savior was dedicated on St. John's day, June 24. 
W. A. Heinrich, at his ashery in Faribault, in 1869, made 19,000 
pounds of potash. The value of agricultural implements sold in 
Faribault in this year was $27,715. They consisted of 95 reapers, 
47 horse rakes, 7 threshing machines, and 12 mowers. The Con- 
gregational church at Faribault was dedicated on October 12. In 
October of this year a Horticultural Society was formed. 

1870. The German Catholic church at Faribault was opened 
in January. The freight business done in Faribault during the 
year 1869 was as follows : Wheat shipped, 69,492 bushels ; flour, 
52,743 barrels; hogs, 398,660 pounds; total freight, 19,985,250 
pounds. Early in February there was a destructive fire in Fari- 
bault, destroying several buildings. D. Stevens, carpenter ; and 
Smith, Mr. Sheeran, N. O. Winans, J. Berghlems, Rogers & Ste- 
vens, and others were sufferers. Rev. Mr. Riddell, who was well 
and favorably known here, died in Kansas in February. On June 
28 the Shattuck boys had a regatta on Cannon lake. There were 
four boats in the race, and they made the distance of two miles 
as follows : Undine, 20 minutes, 14 seconds ; Red Bird, 20 min- 
utes, 24 seconds; Rover, 20 minutes, 36 seconds; Ariel, 20 min- 
utes, 56 seconds. A flag was presented to the winning crew by 
Emily Du Bois. In the evening there was a supper with the 
usual accessories. A Minneapolis boat club afterwards sent a 
challenge, but as no suitable boat could be procured, no contest 
was had with that club. The census for Faribault in 1870 was 

1871. The second regatta was on Thursday, June 8, 1871, at 
Cannon lake. The contest was between the Shattuck school, the 
St. Paul and the Tritonio Club, of the University. During the 
progress of the race the University boat filled and went under. 
The other boats stopped to rescue the floundering oarsmen, and 
then the St. Paul crew pulled in and were declared the winners. 
Since that time boating has not been a specialty with the Shat- 
tuck Cadets. In May the old Van Brunt store was removed from 
the corner of Main and Third streets to the south side of Third, 


in the rear of the First National Bank at Faribault. This build- 
ing was put up by Vant Brunt and Misener in 1855, the lumber 
having been brought from Red Wing. A Turners' Society was 
organized at Faribault August 10, with the following corps of 
officers: President, C. E. Brandt; vice-president, A. Mueller; 
treasurer, F. A. Theopold; secretary, W. Hendrick; instructors, 
Newsal and Herbst; superintendent, Mr. Kraft. Building im- 
provements in 1871, in the city of Faribault, amounted to 

1872. Hon. George W. Tower, the first mayor, was inaugu- 
rated on April 9. Dr. and Mrs. Hollis Howe celebrated the fif- 
tieth anniversary of their wedding, at Faribault, this year. The 
Memorial Chapel of the Good Shepherd, at Faribault, was dedi- 
cated, and assigned to the use of the Shattuck school on Septem- 
ber 24. Hill's furniture factory at Faribault was burned on 
November 22, involving a loss of $25,000. Seabury Hall at Fari- 
bault was destroyed by fire on November 28, entailing a loss of 

1873. The Faribault fire department was thoroughly reor- 
ganized on January 1, 1873. The steam fire engine arrived on 
February 7, after being sixty days on the road. E. X. Leavens 
was appointed postmaster at Faribault in the spring of this }car. 
Quite a serious fire took place on April 10, at Faribault. The 
losses sustained were by Tuttle & Barnard, a meat market; Spo 
& Dappings, J. McCutcheon, George M. Gilmore, J. Stocklein, 
and a few others. The expense of this conflagration was about 
$6,000. In November, H. E. Barron had a reunion of his old 
friends at his hotel at Faribault. He came to Faribault in 1855, 
and built and started the Barron House, with E. N. Leas-ens as 
clerk. S. J. Jaques died on December 22, in Philadelphia, of 
typhoid fever. He was a promising citizen of Faribault, and 
was in the real estate and insurance business with II. \Y. Barry, 
and was succeeded by J. D. Green. He was secretary of the 
Board of Trade, and interested in other public enterprises. The 
Faribault Driving Park was opened on July 24, under the pat- 
ronage of the Cannon Valley Agricultural ami .Mechanical Asso- 

1874. The Scandinavian Literary Society was organized on 
February 13. in Faribault. A constitution and by-laws were 
adopted, and officers elected, as follows: President, II. A. Lar- 
son; vice-president. ( ). L. llaniery; treasurer, A. T. Brondo- 
vold; secretary, J, J. Schey ; assistant secretary, M. J. Holmen. 
In February a catamount weighing thirty-six pounds was shot 
within a few miles of Faribault. Presumably he was one of the 
last of his race in this section. Major Dike's house at Faribault 
was tunned on May 14, ( m Sunday, \.ugus1 2, an insane student 


of the Divinity School at Faribault, attempted to shoot Bishop 
Whipple. He started from the audience and walked into the 
chancel, where he raised a pistol to shoot the bishop, but he had 
forgotten to cock the weapon, and his arm was seized ; others 
interfering, he was secured and subsequently sent to St. Peter. 
The Church of the Immaculate Conception, in Faribault, was 
consecrated on October 9, with imposing rites. A Building and 
Loan Association at Faribault was organized. C. W. Andrews 
was president. 

1876. On February 22, the Masonic Hall at Faribault was 
dedicated with suitable exercises. William A. Shaw, of the firm 
of Carpenter, Smith & Shaw, clothing dealers, died at Faribault 
on March 11. He was a native of Seneca Falls, N. Y., and came 
here in 1857. He left a widow and one child. A veteran reunion 
of the First Minnesota Volunteer Infantry occurred in Faribault 
on June 15. An address of welcome was presented by Mayor 
Nutting. H. C. Whitney was the president of the Veteran Asso- 
ciation. The Grange Mill at Faribault was burned November 
8, entailing a loss of $10,000. The new engine house in Faribault 
was built in this year, at a cost of $7,300. The flouring mill of 
Bean Brothers & Tennant, on the Cannon river, a mile and three- 
fourths from Faribault, was burned December 8, at a loss of 

1878. At the spring election of 1878, the question of "license" 
or "no license" for the sale of intoxicating beverages was sharply 
contested at the polls in Faribault, and the "no license" party 
succeeded in obtaining a majority on the direct question, but 
the other side elected their candidates for the several offices, 
which proved to be a distressing state of affairs. The telephone 
reached Faribault in the spring. A golden wedding on May 17 
was a notable affair, the happy couple being Rev. and Mrs. J. 
Hoover. The Board of Trade was reorganized at Faribault on 
June 24. The most disastrous fire that ever happened in Fari- 
bault was on June 17 of this year. Almost an entire square was 
consumed, including two banks and ten stores ; the losses were 
estimated at $125,000, and embraced a lost list of sufferers. 

1879. A company to erect and operate an amber cane sugar 
refinery was organized in Faribault in 1879, with a capital of 
$9,000. S. H. Kenney, John Mullin and I. B. Spencer were the 
officers. A windmill company was organized at Faribault in this 



Incidents in the Life of the County from 1880 to 1910 — Fires, 
Deaths, Marriages, Organizations, Churches, Crimes and 
Other Happenings in the Daily Routine of Rice County 
Progress — Culled from the Newspaper Files. 

In this chapter are recorded the principal events in the his- 
tory of Rice county from 1880 to June, 1910. Doubtless many 
incidents of importance have been omitted, but the reader will 
find in this chapter thousands of items which are worthy of being 
preserved in this form, and which at the time of their happening 
occupied the attention of the people of the county. The nearly 
sixty years of Rice county's occupation by white settlers may 
properly be divided into two periods, the period from 1853 to 
1880, and the modern period from 1880 to the present time. 

1880. The silver wedding of Capt. and Mrs. E. H. Cutts 
was celebrated on January 8. In the summer of 1880 a stone 
manufactory was added to the industries of Faribault. The rail- 
road business in Faribault during this year was as follows : 
Freight forwarded, 32,305,222 pounds; local charges, $85,516; 
freight received, 19,316,901 pounds; local charges, $48,364 ; ticket 
sales, $24,667. Births in Faribault, 772; deaths, 340; showing 
a natural increase of 432. May 5, the gas works at Faribault 
were struck by lightning, destroying the naphtha tank house, 
with about 1,000 gallons of naphtha, and damaging the gas- 
holder house, the total loss being about $4,000. Soon afterwards 
a second storm visited the city', tearing down chimneys, killing 
stock, uprooting barns and doing other damage. May 17, fire at 
Faribault destroyed a house on Eighth and Maple streets, owned 
by James Brennan ; damage, about $1,000. May 18, J. E. Sher- 
man was sentenced to six years in the state prison for robbing 
George Sexton, of Faribault, December 1, 1878. May 26, Robert 
Scott, son of J. G. Scott, shot a gray eagle, measuring six feet 
six and one-half inches from tip to tip. May 26, thus far this 
year, seventeen wolves had been killed in Rice county. A. L. 
Wright, five in Cannon City; Frank Collins, five in Warsaw, 
and Geo. W. Donaldson, seven in Morristown. May 20, a build- 
ing situated at the corner of Main and Fourth streets caved in, 
narrowly escaping injuring its inmates. May 19, the Congrega- 



tional church at Northfield and barns owned by O. L. Listner 
and H. H. White were destroyed by fire. The Faribault fire 
department assisted in subduing the flames. May 26, the an- 
nouncement was made of the appointment of the following cen- 
sus enumerators for Rice county: Wheatland, J. M. Henderson; 
Webster, E. C. Knowles; Erin, Patrick McEntee; Forest, C. O. 
Peirsons; Bridgewater, Jesse C. Wilson; Northfield township, 
John M. Watts; Northfield village, D. F. Kelly; Shieldsville, 
Frank E. Kenney ; Wells, C. T. Winans ; Cannon City, W. B. 
Lyons; Wheeling, A. B. Hill; Morristown, B. Hopkins; War- 
saw, E. Hollister; Walcott, John H. Petteys; Richland, Sol 
Schmidt; Faribault, Joseph C. Mold, William Close, I. G. Beau- 
mont, L. A. Fish. June 2, Rev. J. J. Sleven, from Shakopee, suc- 
ceeded Father Robert, of the Catholic church in Shieldsville. 
May 27, Frederick Meyers and two daughters, of Richland, when 
returning from Faribault, were thrown from the wagon at Pond's 
quarry, and seriously injured. May 27, George Black, a cadet 
of Shattuck school, was drowned in Straight river, while bathing. 
June 1, George Tanner, of Omaha, and Adelaide Millspaugh were 
married at the cathedral at Faribault. June 2, A. J. Beebee and 
M. A. Hathaway purchased the Arlington at Faribault, for 
$9,750, and enlarged it. June 3, Wm. H. Wheeler and Harriet 
Wheeler were united in marriage at the cathedral in Faribault. 
June 5, the house owned by the Sisters, near the Catholic church 
in Faribault, and occupied by T. J. Conlin and N. W. Blood, 
was struck by lightning. Mrs. Conlin and a girl were badly 
shocked. June 3, heavy storms of wind, hail and rain did great 
damage, washing out culverts, bridges and roads, and lasting 
three days. June 11, Edgar Denny, of Morristown, was sen- 
tenced to four years in Stillwater and a fine of $500 for passing 
counterfeit money. June 10, lightning struck the school house 
of District No. 61 of Wheeling. June 23, P. P. Kinsey opened a 
dry goods store in Northfield. June 30, the trustees of the Meth- 
odist Episcopal church at Faribault let the contract for finishing 
the church building. The census returns of Faribault were : 
First ward, 1,632; Second, 1,379; Third, 1,153; Fourth, 1,264; 
total, 5,428. June 23, a waterspout was witnessed at Northfield. 
June 24, the Grand Commandery of the Knights Templar of 
Minnesota met in Faribault. Census report of Northfield, 2,300. 
Census of Rice county : Wheatland, 1,464; Wheeling, 917; Wal- 
cott, 825 ; Cannon City, 1,182; Bridgewater, 1,683; Shieldsville, 
766; Morristown, 1,424; Northfield city, 2,299; Northfield town, 
909; Forest 853; Warsaw, 1,019; Webster, 871 ; Wells, 1,029; 
Erin, 822; Richland, 957. Rice county, total, 22,384. Gain of 
36 per cent. June 29, Cochran's flour mill, near Dundas, was 
struck by lightning and burned. July 10, W. H. Norton, cashier 


of Citizens' Bank of Northfield, died. July 17, Jacob Gooden, 
Theodore Hirder and John Meihl overturned a boat in Circle 
lake. Gooden was drowned ; age seventeen. August 4, Godfrey 
Fleckenstein erected addition to brewery at Faribault, costing 
$5,000. August 25, M. B. Sheffield purchased the Walcott mill 
for his son, B. B. Sheffield. August 19, Faribault Guards mus- 
tered out of service. August 23, Barney Weitchers accidentally 
shot while hunting on East Prairie. He was a member of the 
fire department. September 1, 200 bushels of wheat owned by 
Joseph Diffinant. of Erin, burned. August 23. Ferris Webster, 
an old settler, and after whom the town of Webster was named, 
died from blood poisoning, seventy-eight years of age. August 
29, home of E. E. Stanley of Bridgewater, burned. Total loss, 
and family barely escaped through a window. The books and 
records of school district No. 22 were also lost. September 22, 
postoffice at Cannon City discontinued. September 17, Frank 
Pratt, William Whipple and Ole Moklebust fell from a scaffold 
in the Catholic church in Faribault and were severely injured. 
September 24, Polar Star Cooper Shop at Faribault burned ; loss, 
$700. Stock owned by Messrs. Bean & Tennant, lessees. Octo- 
ber 6, D. J. Phelps opened a dental office in Faribault. October 
6, Mueller & Witte opened a hardware store at Faribault. Harry 
Hill and S. I. Pettitt opened a grocery store at Faribault. Octo- 
ber 1, Major Dike was assaulted at Faribault by David Collison. 
Collison was fined $25 and costs by Justice Hunter. October 6, 
7 and 8, Rice county fair was held at Faribault. Hon. Gordon 
E. Cole made the address. October 23, Policeman O'Brien, of 
Faribault, had a narrow escape from death from a revolver which 
fell from his pocket and exploded. October 27, H. S. Gipson and 
J. H. Case formed a law partnership at Faribault. October 19, 
Richard Newell, of Morristown village, was knocked by a pole 
from a load of wood and killed. November 3, work commenced 
on the new bridge over Fall creek at Pond's quarry. The work 
of veneering the Methodist Episcopal church at Faribault was 
finished. October 29. the Matteson flour mill at Faribault 
was destroyed by fire. The origin of the fire was not known. 
The loss was estimated to be $23,000. The insurance on 
the building was $18,500. There was a small fire at the 
Barron House; the loss was about $200. November 10. Capt. 
R. H. L. Jewett received a consignment of young carp from 
the government to stock tin- lakes. November 5. John Dud- 
ley escaped from the county jail at Faribault. October 30, 
Edward Riley, an old settler of Webster, dropped dead in 
Northfield. November 15. the Faribault House, on Second street, 
was burned to the ground. November 17. Rice county school: 
Children in the public schools at Faribault, 1.0S5: children in all 


schools of Faribault, 1,667; children in public schools of North- 
field, 619; Dundas, 204. Total enrollment of scholars in the 
public schools of Rice county, 5,796. Total number of children 
in all the schools of Rice county, 6,612. Total number of teachers 
employed during the winter terms, 133; during summer, 104. 
Average wages, males, $32.41 ; females, $25.30. Total number 
of school buildings in the county, 77 frame, 18 brick, 6 stone, 9 
log. "Value of school buildings and sites, $117,940. Number of 
private schools in the count}', 10. November 17, the new build- 
ing of the Arlington Hotel was opened at Faribault. It fronted 
fifty-six feet on Main street, was of brick, and was three stories 
high. November 24, the dam at the Walcott mill had been 
rebuilt and strengthened at a cost of $1,000. The mill turned out 
an average of 100 barrels of flour a day. November 23, Michael 
Moran was sentenced to eighteen months in Stillwater for horse 
stealing. A new flume was put into the old mill on the island 
at Dundas. December 1, the First National Bank at Faribault 
paid out $40,000 in gold during the week on wheat checks. De- 
cember 8, the number of pieces of first-class mail handled by 
the postoffice at Faribault during the past year was 7,500. De- 
cember 1, Lewis Cooper was robbed on the Second street bridge 
at Faribault by three men. December 3, J. G. Spenser was stopped 
on the same bridge by two persons. He called for help, and Offi- 
cers O'Brien and Shepherd came, but the men got away. Decem- 
ber 8, the mill of J. D. Green & Co., on Straight river, which was 
closed for repairs and improvements, was opened with the capac- 
ity of 220 barrels. December 22, Pettitt & Hill's new building 
was one of the finest in the city. It was seventy-five feet long 
and very wide. December 29, the postoffice at Cannon City was 
re-established under the name of Dean, with W. T. Keickenapp 
as postmaster. Census Bulletin No. 76 gave the following report 
for Rice county: Population, 22,480; number of males, 11,673; 
females, 10,807; native born, 15,691; foreign, 6,789; Chinese, 1; 
Japanese, 1 ; Indians, 53. December 16, E. N. Cook, of Dundas, 
caught a large gray wolf. December 29, Phippen & Newell 
opened a new saw mill at Dundas. 

1881. January 5, M. B. Sheffield purchased the Brandt and 
Sheffield brewery at Faribault for $11,000. January 4, a new bell 
was put in the Congregational church at Morristown. January 
3, fire broke out in the "99 cent" store, which adjoined the 
Masonic block at Faribault, and endangered both buildings, the 
fire spreading to the "Democrat" office. The loss was estimated 
about $4,500. January 11, the big Diamond mill of Morristown 
was closed for the purpose of installing new machinery. January 
18, a brass band was organized in Morristown, January 26, Rice 
County Clerk of the Court issued the following records of 


1880. Number of civil cases, 284; criminal, 28. Number of cases 
tried: civil, 62; criminal, 28; divorces granted, 16; number natur- 
alized, 165; marriage licenses issued, 193. January 26, the 
Brandt brewery property at Faribault was sold to the Gustavis 
Siebold and A. W. Mueller for $16,000. The clerk of the court 
issued the following record of births and deaths: Births, male, 
368; female, 404; total, 772. Deaths, male, 163; female, 177; total, 
340. February 2, a petition was presented to the legislature to 
set off that part of Cannon City lying west of the Cannon river 
to the town of Wells. The ice at Roberds lake is reported 
thirty-seven inches thick. The Scott mill at Faribault is being re- 
fitted with new machinery. Father Van Leent, who recently 
arrived at Faribault, has charge of the French and German 
Catholic churches. D. I Phelps purchased the dental business of 
F. C. Bogart, of Faribault. John L. Cole opened an implement 
store in Faribault and in Northfield. A number of young men 
fitted up a gymnasium in Wheaton's hall at Northfield. Febru- 
ary 4, the C. M. & St. P. passenger train was snowed in four 
miles south of Faribault for sixty-four hours. This was during 
the great snow storm that visited this section. Snow was 
drifted in the streets of Faribault six and eight feet deep. Feb- 
ruary 9, a Harmonica Singing society was formed at Faribault. 
February 16, D. D. Lloyd purchased the grocery stock of F. 
Nutting, of Faribault. February 23, W. X. Cosgrove, of Fari- 
bault, invented a concentrated roller mill, which was installed in 
the Polar Star mill at Faribault. March 2, J. Deutsh of Fari- 
bault, closed out his dry goods store at auction. Officers O'Brien 
and Sheridan received state bounty of $200 for the arrest of "Big 
Mike," the horse thief. J. G. Scott leased his flour mill at Roberds 
lake to Gutzler & Company, who repaired same. New mail route 
between Faribault and Rochester established. Trips made tri- 
weekly. March 16, E. N. Levens reappointed postmaster at 
Faribault. March IS. Mr. anil Mrs. A. B. Sexton of Walcott, 
celebrated their golden wedding. April 3, Rev. Edmond Gale 
took charge of the Congregational church at Faribault. March 
27, Abner Beardsly died at Walcott, age 88, one of the old settlers. 
April 19, the residence of Samuel Hawkins of Cannon City was 
burned and Mr. Hawkins lost his life in trying to save his 
property. April 27, Mr. K. M. Evans purchased the Oleson 
block in Faribault, and tilted same up as hotel and opened same 
as the Ogden house. May 4, county jail at Faribault improved. 
April 28, home of E. O. Dennison, town of Walcott. burned to 
ground. May 9, August Fischer was thrown in front of a drag 
and died from injuries received. May 1(>, Faribault Gas Company 
commenced work of changing their wooden mains to iron ones. 
May 13, following were examined and admitted to the bar: J. A. 


Sawyer, Owatonna; A. J. Wolf, Lyman D. Baird, Ed. H. Loy- 
hed, L. A. Kedney, J. F. Maloney, of Faribault. May 20, an at- 
tempt made to rob John Mullen on Maple street, Faribault, by 
three men. June 9, Faribault elevator burned with 40,000 bu. 
of wheat. The Faribault Wind Mill Company was also en- 
dangered, but prompt work by the department, prevented any 
damage. The loss on the elevator was $65,000. The insurance 
on wheat $27,000. The elevator was constructed in 1865. Was 
the largest on the line of the railroad. Had four elevators. 
Capacity of 100,000 bushels. Prof. J. J. Dow had been promoted 
to superintendency of the Blind, and Dr. G. H. Knight to that of 
the Imbeciles and Idiotic. June 8, a storm passed over the county 
and did serious damage by rain, hail and lightning. Several 
houses were struck, roads washed out, crops damaged to some 
extent by hail. June 16, residence of Mr. and Mrs. F. A. Theo- 
pold at Faribault, opened. June 21, fire broke out in Blogetts 
Lumber yard Faribault, destroying all dressed lumber. June 16, 
Cap. Isaac Hamilton died in Wells town, he was a member of 
company F. 10th Minnesota. After the war he engaged in farm- 
ing, and was also in the grocery business in Faribault from 1875 
to 1879. June 28, Faribault guards reorganized, with James 
Hunter captain. June 30, Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Crossett cele- 
brated their golden wedding. July 4, the old settlers' picnic was 
held at Roberds lake. Speeches were made by F. W. Frink, of 
Faribault, and M. W. Skinner, of Northfield, G. W. Batchelder 
and R. A. Mott, of Faribault, and others. July 5, Charles Vander- 
voort captured a wildcat and five kittens at Dundas. July 6, 
a comet in the northern sky created some excitement among the 
residents of Rice county. July 9, a trial of the new self-binders 
took place at the Cannon Lake House. July 3, five persons were 
severely injured and narrowly escaped death by being struck by 
the train at the crossing south of the Charles Shields' farm. 
July 13, contract was awarded for the building of the school 
house at Shieldsville village. July 5, A. Retcloff, a baker at Fari- 
bault, fell down stairs and sustained injuries from which he died. 
July 13, the city of Faribault issued 235 dog tax licenses under the 
new rule. July 10, six persons were found guilty of assault and 
battery upon John and Andrew Adney in Wheatland, were fined 
by Justice Byrnes. County attorney Perkins appeared for the 
state. M. H. Keeley appeared for the defense. July 10, Mr. and 
Mrs. T. H. Loyhed celebrated their silver wedding. Gaydory's 
band furnished the music. June 30, Peter Roth and Katie 
Weaver were united in marriage. July 30, a mail route had been 
estabished from Richland to Kenyon. Mail was carried once a 
week. D. D. Lloyd sold his grocery, in Faribault, to T. B. Gay- 
lord. There was a salt famine in Faribault, the entire supply in 


the city run out. A number of calves on the farm of F. Z. Sher- 
wood, of Faribault, were killed by a pack of dogs. July 15, Rev. 
II. Schultz took charge of the German Lutheran church of Fari- 
bault. July 21, Chinch bugs have done much damage through 
Rice county. July 21, there was an attempt made to burn the 
Arlington House at Faribault. July 27, tramps caused much 
trouble around Northfield. August 10, a young man by the name 
of Lambert was chloroformed and robbed in Faribault. August 
16, Samuel Crossett died at his home in Faribault, at the age of 
eighty-five. He was the oldest Knight Templar in the state. 
August 12, a Chinaman, who ran a laundry in Faribault, was 
assaulted and robbed by William Burke. August 23, the Barron 
House barn, at Faribault, burned. Dr. Dalmore, a veterinary 
surgeon lost all his effects. Two horses were burned in the barn. 
September 27, a number of horses were stolen in Faribault. Offi- 
cers Dunham and Sheridan were sent in pursuit of the thieves. 
September 28, Shceran and Fuller bottling works, at Faribault, 
were enlarged and moved to the east side of Straight river op- 
posite the Fleckenstcin brewery. September 24, special me- 
morial services held in Faribault, in memory of President Gar- 
field. October 5, a drug store was opened in Faribault by Ulrich 
Hayerdahl. October 19, new bridges were put up in Faribault, 
over the Babcock creek on Front and Fourth street. November 
2, Hon. H. A. Scandrett resigned from the office of judge of 
probate. John Mullein was appointed, by Governor Pillsbury, to 
fill the vacancy. November 9, wolves were giving the farmers 
around Morristown considerable trouble by killing sheep. No- 
vember 16, signs were put up on the corners of the streets in 
Faribault, giving the names of the streets. November 17, Nor- 
wegian church dedicated in Northfield. November 23, the new 
bridge over Straight river on Eighth street Faribault, completed. 
November 21, George Dandelet and Katie Nolan were united in 
marriage at Richland. December 1, a new boiler had been in- 
stalled at Green's mill at Faribault. November 30, A. B. Stickncy 
looked over the grounds for building the Cannon Valley railroad. 
December 7, Dr. S. T. Clemenl opened a dental office in Fari- 
bault. November 19, D. 1'. Smith dissolved partnership with 
J. A. Winter in the grocery business at Faribault, L. Hauley tak- 
ing his place. December i4, a large deer was killed in Erin. 
Adam Knopf killed a monstrous prairie wolf at \\ heeling. A 
new building erected by R. A. Mott, in Faribault, was completed. 
December 28, the Baptist church at Faribault celebrated its 
twenty-fifth anniversary. December 25. the new Congregational 
church at Northfield was dedicated. December 1. Prof. \\ M 
West and Millie Mott were married. 

1882. January 1. tin- Faribault .Millers Association elevi 


was completed. January 11, H. P. Sime resigned his position as 
chief of the Faribault fire department. January 7, fire broke out 
in the Post building in Faribault, which threatened a number of 
stores. January 20, Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Winter celebrated their 
silver wedding. February 14, Harry E. Eastling, of Walcott, had 
a fight with two wildcats which he finally killed. February 16, 
the old settlers held a reunion at Northfield. February 12, the 
Presbyterian church at Forest was abandoned after being in use 
over a quarter of a century. March 1, Cavannaugh & Co. pur- 
chased the N. W. Blood woolen mill in Faribault. March 8, Case 
& Gipson, law firm of Faribault, dissolved. March 1, the original 
building of the deaf institute at Faribault, was partially destroyed 
by fire. It was used by M. McMahon as a wagon shop. The 
building was erected by Major Fowler in 1859 and was used as 
the deaf institute from 1863 to 1869. March 6, fire broke out in 
the Case block in Faribault. The building was used for saloon 
purposes by Fred Bartlet. From there the fire spread to R. J. 
Lieb's shoe store and also endangered the store of J. B. Wheeler 
on the opposite side of Second street. The store was one of the 
old land marks. It was erected by George W. Tower in 1856. 
March 3, the town of Dundas was the scene of a general drunken 
riot. Much damage was done by the rioters. March 8, B. J. 
Sheridan, of the Faribault police force, resigned. March 12, 
Thomas Lombard, the first settler of the town of Wheatland, 
died, age fifty-eight years. He took his claim in 1855 after immi- 
grating from Canada. March 14, Charles A. Wheaton, senior 
editor publisher of the Rice County Journal, died at Northfield 
He was seventy-three years of age. March 18, Hon. Luke Hullet 
died at Faribault, age seventy-nine years. He was a resident of 
Faribault from May 14, 1853, and was a member of the legis- 
lature of 1859-60. He was elected president of the old settlers' 
association in 1874 and remained as such to the time of his death. 
March 16, the Barron house at Faribault was burned, loss $34,000. 
The buildings near the Barron house were also burned ; they were 
occupied by Hummell's photograph gallery and Thompson's 
candy store. The original part of the Barron house was built 
1856, was enlarged a few years later and in 1869 enlarged by 
a three-story building at a cost of $17,000. The business portion 
of the town was threatened and word was sent to Northfield and 
Owatonna fire departments for aid. When the fire was under 
control this was countermanded. March 10, the pupils of the 
Feeble-minded School were moved into the new building pro- 
vided for them on the bluffs at Faribault. The building was 
44x80 with a tower projection of 12x14 on the west and was four 
stories, including the basement. The mason work was done by 
Thomas McCall & Company and the wood work by Ruggles & 


Kingsley, the painting was done by Shipman & Arney. April 5, 
the firm of Scandrett & Jewett was changed to Weston & Jewett. 
April 12, Second street was macadamized from Chestnut to Maple 
street. April 12, the Faribault Driving Park Club organized. 
James Hunter was elected president and William Mee secretary. 
May 2, work was commenced on the Cannon Valley railroad by 
a corps of engineers. 

The city recorder's office removed from the express office 
building to the room over T. H. Loyhed's hardware store. May 
17, 1882, A. Bettingen sold his store at Faribault to A. L. Hill. 
May 20, 5,000 salmon and 5,000 trout were placed in Cedar lake. 
June 3, Edward A. Foster was shot and killed by John Donald- 
son in the cooper shop at Faribault. June 18, cornerstone laid 
at St. Mary's hall. July 5; Second street of Faribault is now 
lighted with gas to the depot. July 4, a beautiful sword pre- 
sented to Captain Hunter by the Faribault Guards. July 4, Capt. 
Benjamin Lockerby died at his home in Northfield, aged seventy- 
nine years. He settled in Bridgewater in 1855. July 10, Patrick 
Hanlon died at Shieldsville. He settled there in 1856. August 
6, the house and barn of S. Barrager of Bridgewater burned, in- 
cluding five horses. August 23, Rev. C. Genis, of the Immacu- 
late Conception church, removed from Faribault. Father 
O'Gorman took his place. September 20, R. J. Lieb's shoe store 
at Faribault opened at Faribault. October 20, train service 
opened on Cannon Valley road. October 7, the Gavin school- 
house in District 84, in Shieldsville, burned. November 28, Alex- 
ander Faribault died. November 23, the Donaldson-Foster trial 
commenced. The verdict of not guilty was rendered. December 
1, funeral of Alexander Faribault. December 13, the North- 
western telephone exchange was put into operation, forty sub- 
scribers having been secured. December 12, fire broke out in 
Faribault, destroying three store buildings. December 27, 
Messrs. Partridge & Van Eaton have opened a meat market on 
Fourth street. 

1883. January 2, Chief of Police Shipley of Faribault shot by 
Lewis M. Sage. January 19, Chief Shipley died. January 12, 
William Delaney appointed chief. January 12-13, heavy snow 
storm and blizzard passed over county, blocking the roads and 
doing much damage to traffic on the railroads. January 19, Mrs. 
Dike's millinery store, C. P. Pike's tailor shop and Philip John- 
son's drug store in Faribault burned. February 7. the first train 
on the Cannon Valley road going east in two weeks passed 
through. February 5, City Justice O. M. Meade of Northfield 
shot. February 1. old settlers' reunion held at Kyllo's hall at 
Faribault; temperature 40 below. February 16, bill to incor- 
porate the village of Morristown was introduced in the senate 


and passed under a suspension of rules. February 24, S. P. 
Stewart of Northfield died. March 2, home of J. W. Kollmann of 
Faribault burned. March 21, new vault installed in the office of 
the judge of probate in the county courthouse at Faribault. 
March 28, the steam flouring and saw mill of Fabre & Co., at 
Cody's Lake, Wheatland, was destroyed by fire. April 11, the 
Brunswick hotel at Fariabult opened. The hotel is erected upon 
the former site of the Barron house. It is three stories in height ; 
leased for five years by Townsend & Patrick. May 3, L. M. 
Sage indicted for murder in the second degree by the grand 
jury. May 9, L. M. Sage convicted of manslaughter in the 
fourth degree and sentenced by Judge Buckham to four years 
in Stillwater. June 6, within the past month the county auditor 
paid $151 to D. Davis bounty for 29 wolf scalps and $116 to 
George Konkle for 20 scalps. June 4, the common council of 
Faribault passed the ordinance authorizing the construction of 
the Faribault water works, to be completed not later than Janu- 
ary 1, 1884. June 10, remains of Major Michael Cook removed 
from the cemetery east of Straight river and interred in Oak 
Ridge, with full military honors. June 15, Col. H. B. Mcllvaine 
of Faribault died. June 27, report on the amount invested in 
building in the city of Faribault for 1882 shows $162,815. July 
18, the fair grounds at Faribault purchased by prominent citizens 
to be used for county fairs, etc. July 11, a storm causing much 
damage to crops passed over the county. July 18, fire destroyed 
Walter Morris' store, Masonic hall and postoffice at Morristown. 
August 7, Hon. J. J. Byrnes died, aged thirty years. He was 
prominent in the city of Faribault, having held several city 
offices. August 29, Healy Bros.' business block finished in Fari- 
bault. September 2, M. E. church in Faribault dedicated. Sep- 
tember 4, W. E. Blodgett and Harriet Hudson married. Septem- 
ber 20, the new St. Mary's school building opened. September 
26, N. A. Coggswell, William Thayer and William Durrin erected 
a saw mill in the town of Erin. September 28, Hon. H. A. Scan- 
dett of Faribault died, aged forty years. He served in the Civil 
War and was prominent in politics in the county, having held 
several prominent offices. October 7, John Meyers, an old 
settler, died at his home in Walcott ; homesteaded in 1854. No- 
vember 14, John B. Westervelt and O. W. Ball purchased the 
Faribault carriage works. November 6, Jan Nilson Bjorkbek 
was killed by James McCall, Michael O'Reilly, Godfrey Ward 
and Geo. W. Cavanaugh in Faribault. November 11, the Ger- 
man Lutheran school dedicated in Faribault. November 21, 
James McCall, G. W. Cavanaugh, M. O'Reilly and Godfrey Ward 
indicted for murder in the first degree. December 5, new pipe 
organ installed in the Congregational church of Faribault. 


November 22, J. Buck, aged seventy-four, died, an old settler of 
Morristown. December 4, M. N. Pond shot by Mrs. George 
Schwartz of Faribault. December 4, Dr. L. W. Dennison of 
Faribault died, aged sixty-four; came to Faribault in 1855; mem- 
ber of legislature 1877; reelected in 1878; county commissioner 
1875-79, serving as chairman of the board. December 26, the 
bridge over the ravine road at Faribault completed. The post- 
office at Wheeling ordered changed to three miles northeast of 
the old location ; George Knoph appointed postmaster. 

1884. January 20, E. G. Hathaway died, aged sixty-seven ; 
settled in Wells town, near Roeberds lake, 1855 ; moved to East 
Prairie in 1865. January 20, Rev. T. C. Stringer resigned from 
charge of the M. E. church at Faribault. January 22, Hon. Caleb 
Clossen died, aged eighty-four, in Hartford, Todd county, Minne- 
sota. Settled at Cannon City in 1855. Served in the legislature 
in 1862. Removed from Rice county in 1872. January 25, 
August Deman died in Lester, township of Forest. Settled in 
Rice county, 1855. Greatly interested in bee culture. February 
7-8, seventh annual meeting of the State Dairymen's Association, 
held at Faribault. February 14, the old settlers held a meeting 
at Lockwood's hall at Northfield. February 27, fire destroyed 
the stores of T. J. McCarthy, Glaser's meat market and Holm- 
quist's greenhouse in Faribault. March 7, John Tenny died at 
Faribault, aged sixty-three. Came to Faribault in 1861, member 
of the firm of Russell, Thayer & Co., in the old Boston Store, 
later with T. B. Clement in the grocery business. Was in the 
old LaCroix mills afterwards, at Warsaw and Roeberds Lake; 
was also in business at Dundas. Acted as agent in securing the 
right of way for the Cannon Valley road. March 8, L. Theil- 
man's dwelling and C. Paul's house destroyed by fire at Fari- 
bault. March 9, fire destroyed the store and saloon of M. P. 
Holman and feed store of A. W. Tenny at Faribault. April 6, 
Capt. D. D. Lloyd died at Faribault, aged fifty-nine. Served in 
the Mexican War. Was member of the cavalry troop that wenl 
from Faribault against the Indians in 1862. April 16, the foun- 
tain purchased for the city park at Faribault. April 20, Elisha 
Godfrey died, aged seventy-five, at his home in Bridgewater. 
Settled in Rice county in 1855. Stephen G. Flanders died, aged 
sixty-four, at Faribault. Member of Co. B, 8th Minn. Vol. Inf. 
April 18, Anthony Hubert of Wheatland died. Veteran of War 
of 1812. April 27, the tower of the Episcopal church at Warsaw 
blown down and completely wrecked. May 21. Mrs. Swartz 
sentenced to tun years in state prison. July 24. body of an un- 
known man found in Straight river at Faribault, thought to have 
been a murder. August 14, Samuel Lougee died at Minneapolis. 
Settled in Rice county i" 1857: removed in 1869. August 21-22, 


firemen's tournament held in Faribault. Fire departments from 
principal cities of Minnesota took part. Faribault won the prize. 
September 15, Michael Cook Post, No. 123, G. A. R., organized 
in Faribault; A. E. Haven, Com.; John Hutchinson, S. V. C.J 
J. J. Van Saun, J. V. C. ; J. R. Parshall, O. D.; J. Walrod, O. G.; 
E. N. Leavens, Q. M.; J. J. Dow, Chap.; J. W. Daniels, Surg.; 
James Hunter, Adj. September 30, Mrs. Marthilda Hullet died, 
aged seventy-one years. October 1, the house and hall of Dan 
Scott burned to the ground in the town of Morristown. October 
15, the Allen house in Faribault was reopened under the name of 
the Commercial hotel by Mr. Creiman. December 2, final test of 
the waterworks system of Faribault made. December 31, reso- 
lution passed by the common council of Faribault approving the 
water works. 

1885. February 2, Stockleins Bros, open a store in Faribault. 
February 13, Abidan Bailley died in Warsaw, resident since 1869; 
aged eighty-three. March 4, State Dairymen's Association met in 
Faribault. March 13, "Rice County Journal" and the "Northfield 
News" consolidate. April 8, Isaac Plummer died, aged seventy- 
eight; resident of Faribault from 1858. April 21, C. M. Mills- 
paugh died, aged sixty-seven; came to Faribault in 1857. April 
29, the Dakota Roller Mills started in Faribault, L. H. Grieser & 
Co., proprietors. April 22, F. W. Winter & Co. purchase the 
Faribault Windmill Works. May 3, cheese factory in Northfield 
started up. June 1, G. N. Baxter, J. L. Townley and Noel Gale 
form law partnership in Faribault. May 31, J. R. Parshall ap- 
pointed postmaster at Faribault. June 5, the body of Lorenzo 
Jackson found in Cannon lake. He was sixty-six years old; set- 
tled in Rice county at Cannon City in 1856; in Faribault, 1864; 
elected county treasurer in 1881 ; was also engaged in the mer- 
cantile business in Faribault. June 24, annual encampment of 
the Second Regiment, Minnesota National Guard, held at Fari- 
bault. August 11, St. Mary's school tower struck by lightning. 
August 26, new public school building in Northfield, on the 
west side, finished. September 2, Rev. P. Danahy succeeded 
Rev. Thomas O'Gorman as pastor of the Church of the Immacu- 
late Conception, at Faribault. September 28, celebration of the 
thirtieth anniversary of the M. E. church at Faribault. Septem- 
ber 23, the pond at the Polar Star Mills enlarged and deepened. 
The grading for the spur track on the C, M. & St. P. to the 
Walcott Mills commenced. The Walcott Mills enlarged so as to 
put forth 350 barrels daily. September 18, a freight train on the 
Milwaukee road wrecked at the station at Faribault. A thresh- 
ing outfit and five stacks of grain burned on the farm of John 
Thaney. October 12, D. W. Humphrey died at his home in the 
city of Faribault, aged sixty. Was resident of the city from 


1857. October 21, the population of the city of Faribault, accord- 
ing to the census of this year, 6,459; Northfield, 2,948. December 
23, Hugh Smith died at Faribault; settled in Forest in 1856. He 
served one year in Co. C, 6th Minn. Vol. Inf. ; was discharged 
on account of sickness. 

1886. January 6, purchase of Seabury Mission property, west 
of the park in Faribault, for school site, by the Faribault Board 
of Education. January 2-4, snow storm; estimated that about 
twenty inches of snow fell on the level. Trains were delayed and 
much inconvenience caused, especially in the country. January 
26, Policeman Dilley of Northfield shot and killed Eliza Grover, 
who lived on the road between Northfield and Dundas, in self 
defense. February 1, the Faribault furniture factory started; J. 
Hutchinson and A. W. Stocton, proprietors. February 10, Fari- 
bault boiler works established, Waite & Carter, proprietors. 
Minnesota G. A. R. encampment held in Faribault. February 18, 
Owen Sheridan, old settler of Faribault, died, aged sixty-five. 
March 8, James G. Scott died at Roeberds Lake, aged sixty-five. 
Came to Faribault in 1854 with his brother and built the first 
steam mill west of the Mississippi, on Willow street, between 
Second and Third. Was member of the board of county com- 
missioners in 1874. March 26, Rev. T. C. Stringer, former pas- 
tor of the M. E. church of Faribault, died, aged fifty. May 1, 
Norbert Paquin died at Portland, Col., aged sixty-three ; was old 
settler of the county ; formerly owned the land upon which the 
Shattuck school stands. Two of the additions of Faribault bear 
his name. July 21, the cornerstone of the high school at Fari- 
bault laid by the president of the board of education, Hon. G. W. 
Batchelder August 9, Henry Dierkent died, aged seventy-thin-. 
one of the first settlers of the town of Wheeling. August 21, 
storm swept over the country, doing great damage to buildings; 
four lives lost en Cedar lake by the capsizing of a boat. Damage 
in Faribault did not amount to much beyond the blowing down 
of signs and the blowing down of the newly laid wall of the 
high school. August 24, U. S. Hotel barn at Faribault burned 
down, ten horses burning. September 3, Iliram C. Tripp died, 
sixty-nine years of age: settled in Cannon City in 1855. Septem- 
ber 22, chimes and clock placed in Willis hall of Carleton College, 
Northfield. September 28, the building where the Boston Store 
was formerly located in Faribault was burned. Was erected in 
1856 by J. II. Winter. October 1. Gottfried Degan and Gottfried 
Gensch arrested for shooting and wounding Gustave Fehn and 
sister, nf the town of Wells. December 1. the Old Ladies' hall in 
Northfield torn down : erected by J. W. North in 1856. 

1887. January 27, J. W. Cowan died, aged eighty; resident 
of Wells from 1855. April 13, the high school building at Fari- 


bault completed. April 21, Charles St. Antoinne died, aged 
ninety-four. In 1824 he acted as a scout for Major Alexander on 
a march through Minnesota. Came to this county in 1847, 
when the present city of Faribault was a trading post. May 9, 
the Flint furniture factory at Faribault burned; loss $3,000; 
built in 1856; was the first establishment in the state to manu- 
facture goods for the wholesale trade. May 11, the Highland 
Park addition added to the city of Faribault. June 1, B. B. 
Roeberds died ; was old settler of the town of Wells, near the 
lake which bears his name. July 30, J. H. Winter died, aged 
seventy-four. Came to Faribault in 1856 and built the Boston 
Store. Served as county treasurer and also as town supervisor. 
Was member of the first council elected after the incorporation 
of the city of Faribault. October 11, Capt. E. H. Cutts died, aged 
fifty-six; came to Faribault in 1853, walking from Wisconsin in 
December. Staked out a claim in the town of Walcott in Sec- 
tions 21 and 22. Served in Co. B, 8th Minn. Vol. Inf., till 1864, 
when promoted to captain of the 45th U. S. Inf. October 28-30, 
state convention of the Y. M. C. A. held in Faribault. November 
1, the Faribault Rattan Works incorporated. November 9, E. M. 
Beach sash and door factory in Faribault destroyed by fire; loss 
$6,000. November 21, fire in Faribault destroyed number of build- 
ings with a loss of $2,200. December 12, the new C, M. & St. P 
depot opened for use of the public at Faribault. December 15, 
first publication of the "Northfield Independent." December 14, 
George Byrnes elected by council to fill vacancy as city treas- 
urer of Faribault. 

1888. January 12, 42 degrees below zero. January 25, iron 
bridge on Front street, Faribault, completed. March 7, weather 
bureau established in Faribault. March 17, canning factory at 
Faribault incorporated. April 4, a storm caused much damage 
in the county. Several thousand dollars worth of damage done 
in Faribault. Part of the roof of the Church of the Immaculate 
Conception was blown off. Nearly all of the buildings suffered 
to some extent. April 14, burglars enter Shattuck school and 
secure about three thousand dollars worth of plunder. April 24, 
the Milwaukee depot and elevator burned; loss $17,000. May 2, 
the church at Shieldsville struck by lightning and destroyed. 
May 9, Alexander Johnson died, aged fifty-five. Came to Fari- 
bault and established the "Northern Statesman," in 1861, which 
was published until 1864. May 15, cornerstone of Johnson hall, 
at the Seabury divinity school, laid. Major Dike died, aged 
seventy-five ; came to Faribault in 1857 and engaged in banking. 
Later he engaged in the milling business. Was first cashier of 
the First National Bank in 1868. In 1861, joined Co. H, 1st 
Minn. Vol. Inf.; became its captain. Before the regiment left 


the state he was promoted to the rajtk of major, which he re- 
signed in October of that same year. July 5, fire destroyed 
Leary's livery stable, Peavy's photograph gallery, and damaged 
the stores of Carpenter & Smith and Mortenson & Waclin. July 
20, fire destroyed American House barn. Charles Hutchinson's 
barn, a vacant house near the gas works and a house on Elm 
street also destroyed the same week, believed to have been the 
work of a firebug. City of Faribault offered $500 and the Board 
of Underwriters of New York city offered $500 for the arrest 
and conviction of the guilty person. August 24, fire at Klemer 
woolen mills; loss $7,000. September 5, Baptist church dedi- 
cated at Richland. September 30, George Vosberg and Louis 
Hopke arrested, through the efforts of Chas. J. Arney and Will- 
iam Whipple, for setting fire to several buildings previously 
burned in Faribault. December 22, church in Shieldsville com- 
pleted. Rev. Fr. Danehy preached the first sermon. 

1889. February 6, Johnson hall, Seabury Divinity School, 
opened. February 6, the waterworks tax case decided in favor 
of Rice county. March 26, Nellie Buckley stabbed on the Second 
street bridge. April 27, W. B. Dickey's barn and three horses, 
of Walcott, burned. April 30, the cornerstone of Morgan hall at 
Shattuck laid. May 21, Shumway avenue opened for use of the 
public in Faribault. June 12, old building that was built by 
George Batchelder and Judge Berry and occupied by Batchelder 
& Buckham as a law office torn down. July 12, Alson Blodgett, 
Jr., and Frances Sheffield, and Benjamin B. Sheffield and Carrie 
M. Crossett were married at Faribault. News was received of 
the appointment of E. N. Leavens to succeed John R. Parshall 
as postmaster at Faribault. July 14, fire destroyed the barn of 
Columbus Byrne on Cannon lake, in Warsaw. July 12. Mrs. 
J. H. Felt of Faribault was accidentally shot by a boy at a Sunday 
school picnic. July 15, the Clipper Hose Company had been or- 
ganized at Northfield. July 13, Robert Whitson, who came to 
Minnesota in 1863, died at Stanton. July 22, John Iverson died 
at Richland, aged forty-five years. July 19, the residence of 
Octave Du Lac was destroyed by fire near Erin station. July 
22, Father J. B. Blochet, of the French Catholic church at Fari- 
bault, died suddenly. July 31, Barney Sheridan met with a 
serious accident while reaping in Warsaw township. August 7. 
heavy rain did considerable damage to the crops in the county. 
During this storm the house of J. S. Dutton in Faribault was 
struck by lightning and destroyed. August 3, George Archam- 
bault's residence in Faribault was destroyed by tire. August 7, 
the German Lutheran church at Morristown was damaged by 
lightning. August 10, James Walker, aged eighty years, died at 
Morristown. August 16, it was announced that Rev. Father 


Nougart had been appointed pastor of the Sacred Heart church 
at Faribault. August 11, the Milwaukee depot at Faribault was 
robbed. August 10, A. J. Lamberton, who was in charge of the 
land office at Faribault in 1857, died at St. Peter. August 9, 
Mike Birkland and Chester A. Palmer escaped from the county 
jail. A week later Palmer was captured. August 20, a new 
creamery association was organized in Walcott. August 18, 
William C. Cleland, aged sixty-six, died at Dundas. August 24, 
Henry Garvey, aged sixty-eight, died at Faribault. August 27, 
Joseph Velsmeyer died at Faribault, at the age of sixty-three. 
September 1, the Klemer woolen mill at Faribault was damaged 
by fire. September 6, the new gymnasium at St. Mary's 
school at Faribault, was nearly completed. September 4, a 
house on the Prairieville road, near Faribault, owned by Pat- 
rick Healy and occupied by Hugh McShane, was burned. 
September 8, Adolph W. Henkle, formerly of Faribault, died 
in Minneapolis. September 16, Cole Younger, one of the 
Northfield bank robbers, died in prison at Stillwater. Sep- 
tember 20, a franchise for electric street cars was asked of the 
city council by the Sprague Electric Company. September 27, 
Morgan hall at Shattuck school at Faribault completed at a cost 
of $50,000. October 20, a swan was captured at Cannon lake 
measuring seven feet from tip to tip. November 4, the Walcott 
creamery was incorporated. November 1, Mrs. Lyna Carter died 
at her home in Richland, aged seventy-six years. She settled in 
Rice county in 1856, near Dundas. October 31, 1889, I. G. 
Beaumont died at Roxborough, Pa., aged fifty-four years. He 
settled in Faribault in 1863. He was the assistant postmaster of 
Faribault at one time, also was in the woolen business with N. W. 
Blood. November 7, sixty-seven electric lights installed in 
Northfield. November 11, Rev. P. Danehy removed from Fari- 
bault. December 7, Immanuel Norwegian Lutheran church 
organized in Faribault. December 30, Hill's furniture factory 
and the Tileson & Tennant flooring mill at Faribault were de- 
stroyed by fire ; loss $48,000. 

1890. January 1, the Theopold Mercantile Company discon- 
tinued its retail business and started a wholesale establishment. 
January 3, H. Nichols, an early resident of Walcott, died in Fari- 
bault. January 2, Rev. W. W. Norton, formerly editor of the 
"Independent," died at Northfield, aged seventy. January 10, the 
residence of D. W. Grant had been completed. January 11, 
news was received in Faribault of the loss by fire of the resi- 
dence of Reinhold Zemke of Cedar Lake. January 16, Mrs. 
James McNiel, Jr., of Warsaw township, shot three of her chil- 
dren, gave a dose of carbolic acid to the fourth and tried to end 
her own life with the same poison. July 13, F. J. Vogelsberg, 


aged sixty-two, died at Faribault. January 19, Mrs. Peter 
Boucher, aged eighty-four, said by some to have been the first 
white woman in Minnesota, died near Cannon Lake. January 
24, Charles Peitier died at Morristown, aged seventy-five. Feb- 
ruary 7, the county jail had been renovated and improved. Feb- 
ruary 4, Fred Beeze died at Deerfield. February, 17, 
the residence of L. L. Clason in Warsaw township was burned. 
February 15, Frank Gardner Craw, son-in-law of Bishop Whip- 
ple, died at Cleveland, Ohio. March 4, John W. North, founder 
of Northfield and one of the early proprietors of Faribault, died 
at Fresno, Cal. February 28, the brick schoolhouse just west 
of Circle lake, in the town of Forest, was burned. Mrs. Eliza- 
beth Cowan, aged seventy-nine, widow of J. W. Cowan, died at 
the family residence near Roberd's lake. March 5, Samuel Har- 
kins, a pioneer, died in Walcott. March 1, John H. Case, one of 
the most prominent citizens of the county, died at Faribault. He 
was born in Torrington, Conn., April 15, 1832. He came to Fari- 
bault in 1858 and was a partner of Gordon E. Cole. He was 
county and city attorney, state senator and a nominee for district 
judge. March 13, the plant of the Faribault Electric Light Com- 
pany was partially destroyed by fire. March 14, the residence 
of J. S. Tileson at Faribault was entered by burglars. March 14, 
J. C. Parshall died at Faribault. He was born in Ohio in 1812 
and came to Faribault in 1854. March 25, Geo. M. Nichols, a 
pioneer, died at Warsaw. March 19, George Douglass, a pio- 
neer, died at Cannon City. April 6, Thomas Malloy died at his 
home in Faribault at the age of seventy-nine years. He settled 
in East Prairie in 1854. April 5, Patrick O'Brien died at Wells- 
town at the age of sixty-five years. He came to Rice county in 
1855. April 25, postofhce established at Walcott, with H. W. 
Dcike as postmaster. April 19, fire at the Klemcr woolen mills 
at Faribault; damage $1,000. May 30, the following census enu- 
merators for Rice county were chosen : Richland, E. D. Hoover ; 
Wheeling, H. A. Eckert; Northfield town. P. Hefferman, North- 
field city — first ward, G. B. Cooper; second ward. Mrs. Martha F. 
Farmington; third ward, John S. Way; Walcott, John P. John- 
son; Faribault — first ward, Joseph C. Mold; second ward, John 
C. Turner; third ward, Chas. T. Palmer; fourth ward. George \\". 
Tower; Cannon City, John S. Walrod; Bridgewater. James W. 
McKellip; Dundas village, Dewit C. Burch; Warsaw. Silas II. 
West; Wells, Andrew J. Swanson; Forest, Miss R. Hatfield; 
Webster, M. C. Webster: Morristown, Siras C. Aldrich; Shields- 
ville, Pattric McKenna ; Erin, Michael F. Carroll; Wheatland, 
Peter Fabre. June 1, lion. Iliram Scrivcr died at his home 
in Northfield, aged sixty-one ; was the first mayor of Northfield 
and twice elected to the legislature. Twelve years a director of 


the First National Bank. June 24, work of enlarging the county 
jail at Faribault commenced. July 16, Cornelia Whipple, wife 
of Rt. Rev. H. B. Whipple, D. D., LL. D., died at Faribault, aged 
seventy-three years. July 29, James Begley died at Faribault, 
settled in Faribault in 1857. August 15, George H. Faribault 
died at Fort Yates, N. D., aged sixty-four. Came to Faribault 
in 1853, engaged in the mercantile business for about fifteen 
years ; oldest son of Alexander Faribault. August 25, John 
Waddin died in Minneapolis, aged sixty-four. Came to Faribault 
in 1860; was proprietor of the Waddin House. August 26, 
the "Morristown Rustler" discontinued its publication. August 
27, Patrick Sheehan died, aged fifty-seven. Came to Rice county 
in 1855 and settled in the town of Erin. October 4, Gordon E. 
Cole died in London, England, aged fifty-seven years ; was one of 
the most prominent lawyers of the state. Came to Faribault in 
1857. Formed a law partnership with a Mr. Raymond. Later, 
with John H. Case, formed the law firm of Cole & Case. Elected 
state attorney-general in 1859 and served two terms. During 
third term elected state senator. In 1878 elected mayor of Fari- 
bault. In 1883 elected member of the legislature. November 11, 
Clark's livery stable and Sheeran & Filler's feed mill burned in 
Faribault. December 13, R. F. Donaldson died, aged sixty-five; 
settled near Fox lake in 1856, afterwards engaged in the mer- 
cantile business at Cannon City. 

1891. January 30, A. D. Weston of Dundas caught a large 
wildcat. January 29, Dr. N. M. Bemis died at his home in the 
city of Faribault, aged seventy. Came to Faribault in 1855. 
February 11, John J. Alexander died at Northfield. Came to Rice 
county in 1852; was elected to the legislature in 1887. April 16, 
William Campbell died, aged fifty-five ; came to Faribault in 
1855; helped to make the original survey and plat of the city; 
was first marshal of village of Faribault after its incorporation ; 
also served one year as the chief of police. June 5, Bieter & Kaiser 
continue the grocery business of Newcombe's grocery. May 11, 
Observatory of Carleton College dedicated. May 29, fire did 
considerable damage in the Faribault furniture factory. June 11, 
the large barn of A. J. Stauffer, north of Cannon river, at Fari- 
bault, was struck by lightning and burned. July 28, Garret C. 
Durland, old resident of Cannon City, died, aged seventy-seven. 
Came to Cannon City in 1855. August 16, Samuel C. Dunham 
died at Faribault. Settled in town of Wells in 1856. Served as 
alderman of Faribault in 1872. In 1873 was member of legis- 
lature for one term, also was postmaster of house for a year, 
chief of police under Mayors Nutting, Parshall and Wood. Was 
state oil inspector two years. August 26, Judge Buckham ren- 
dered decision in regard to John S. Archibald's will in favor of 


the Holy Cross church, Dundas. The Immaculate Conception 
parish school merged with the Faribault public school system. 
September 25, high school at Dundas placed under supervision of 
high school state board. September 23, Truman Nutting died, 
aged eighty-five. Came to Faribault in 1855. Erected early 
hotel in Faribault. Member of first city council ; was its vice- 
president. October 9, Samuel Benn, one of Minnesota's earliest 
settlers, died in town of Forest, eighty-three years old. Octo- 
ber 28, wolves did considerable damage to cattle and sheep in 
town of Erin. November 3, residence of late Major Dike 
burned. November 15, cornerstone of Emmanuel Lutheran 
church laid. November 13, Mrs. Nellie B. Luce commited sui- 
cide at State School for Blind. November 20, Charles Peasley 
shot and killed his stepfather, Joseph Colburn, of Richland. 
December 25, Arthur W. Dampier appointed postmaster at 
Northfield, Minn. 

1892. January 1, Free delivery at Faribault established. 
February 17, Pierre St. Onge died, aged sixty-one. Settled in 
Faribault in 1867. February 12, Brandt Brewery in Faribault 
destroyed and sixteen horses owned by Abram Post burned. 
The brewery was the property of Peter Wolford of Minneapolis. 
The original buildings were erected in 1870 and represented a 
total expenditure of $100,000. The loss on the horses was be- 
tween $3,000 and $4,000. February 18, reward of $500 offered by 
city council for arrest of party or parties who set fire to the 
Brandt brewery. March 1, cooper shops at Morristown burned; 
loss $700. February 25, Hon. H. E. Barron died, aged sixty-six. 
March 12, John A. Voltz ordained priest at Louvain, Belgium. 
March 28, Thomas Mee, cashier of First National Bank of Fari- 
bault, died, aged fifty-seven. Twenty-one years in First 
National. Came to Faribault in 1857. April 8, first election 
under Australian ballot system held in Faribault. April 16, 
Mrs. I. M. Fuller died, aged fifty-one. Came to Faribault in 
1869. May 10, Rev. Edward Clark Bill, D. D., died. May 17, 
M. L. Payant opened his drug store in Faribault. May 20, M. J. 
Sheeran died, aged forty. Member of firm Sheeran & Filler 
Bottling Company. May 16, Mrs. Harriet Austin of Warsaw 
died, aged sixty-four. Resident of county since 1856. June 3, 
work began on foundation of shoe factory. June 9, Ira S. 
Field, one of the earliest settlers of Northfield. and for whom the 
city, in conjunction with Mr. North, was named, died, aged 
seventy-eight years. He settled in Northfield in 1856. June 20, 
Dr. Edmund K. Clements and Mary S. Wheeler married at 
Faribault. September 7, Faribault woolen mills burned; loss 
$25,000. September 6. Dr. Samuel Burhams died at Faribault, 
aged seventy-seven. September 19, Kiel's opera house burned 


and furniture stock badly damaged. Total loss $19,000. Octo- 
ber 18, boot and shoe factory at Faribault opened. November 11, 
Michael Fitzgerald died at Faribault, aged ninety-two, one of 
the oldest settlers in county. November 23, G. Fleckenstein's 
brewery burned in Faribault. Loss $16,000. Thought to be 
incendiary work. December 23, J. D. Dennison died, aged eighty- 
two. Came to Faribault and opened a wagon shop in 1856. 
December 31, the Archibald mills burned at Dundas. Loss 
$100,000. These mills were among the oldest and most cele- 
brated in the state. June 10, first number of "New Era of Morris- 
town" issued. June 25, Stephen B. Webb, commercial traveler 
of Davenport, Iowa, committed suicide by drowning in Straight 
river, Faribault. July 9, George W. Glines died, aged sixty-four. 
Came to Rice county in 1855; settled in Warsaw. August 31, 
third district convention of Democratic party met in Faribault. 

1893. January 20, Barron hall at School for Deaf and Dumb 
opened. January 26, Schimmel & Nelson Piano Company incor- 
porated at Faribault. February 5, Hon. O. F. Perkins died at 
Northfield, sixty-three year old. Opened a law office with Hon. 
J. W. North in Faribault. In 1868 state senator. Served several 
years as county attorney. January 3, Wolcott creamery incor- 
porated. February 23, Northwestern Canning Company at Fari- 
bault incorporated. March 17, Scott's mills put in operation by 
Fuller & Stearns. April 5, Faribault opera house incorporated. 
Hon. Joseph Covert died at Cannon City, age sixty-five. Settled 
there in 1855. May 9, W. T. Shimota appointed postmaster at 
Wesley. May 18, Faribault Evening "Tribune" issued. June 1, 
Timothy Shields, of Shieldsville, died, age seventy-seven years. 
Settled in Shieldsville 1856. July 1, Faribault Waterworks 
Company turned over to city the waterworks plant. July 28, 
L. B. Knudson appointed postmaster at Walcott and G. E. 
Straudeman at Moland. July 25, Bernard Derham died, age 
sixty-three. Settled in Wheatland in 1856. October 11, Manney 
Armory at Shattuck school destroyed by fire, loss $25,000. Oc- 
tober 13, Frederick Koester died, age seventy-eight. Settled 
in Northfield 1865. October 20, W. W. Day's livery at Fari- 
bault completed. November 1, laying of cornerstone of Guild 
House in Faribault. December 11, Maj. S. H. Fowler died, age 
eighty-one. May 18, 1863, enlisted in First Regiment, United 
State Dragoons for frontier service. November 12, 1838, ap- 
pointed second lieutenant in Fifth United States Infantry ; vet- 
eran of Mexican War. During the Indian War was aide-de- 
camp on staff of General Sibley. At close of war came to 
Faribault and erected a building and engaged in general mer- 

1894. January 19, A. E. Haven appointed postmaster at 


Faribault. January 15, Hon. H. M. Rice, for whom Rice county 
was named, died at San Antonio, Tex. March 2, opera house, 
Faribault, completed. March 3, S. L. Crocker died, age forty- 
nine. April 11, "Sunnyside" at school for feeble minded opened. 
April 20, Farmer Seed Company breaks ground for warehouse 
in Faribault. April 21, daily mail route established from Fari- 
bault to Shieldsville. July 20, Dennis O'Brien died, age seventy- 
five years. Settled in Walcott in 1853. July 14, Mrs. Emily 
Stewart died in Northfield, age sixty. Came to Faribault in 
1856, removed in 1860, married S. P. Stewart in 1861. August 
10, Frederick Clement died at Faribault, age sixty-two. Septem- 
ber 4, new chemical engine purchased by Faribault fire depart- 
ment. September 28, Harvest Festival held in Faribault. No- 
vember 9, Citizens Bank moved into new quarters at corner 
of Main and Third streets. November 20, Guild House at Fari- 
bault opened. December 6, Capt. Jesse Ames died at Northfield, 
aged eighty-seven. Came to Minnesota in 1864, settling at 
Cannon City; 1866 engaged in milling at Northfield. December 
25, chimes placed in the tower at Shattuck. 

1895. January 10, 11, 12, Church Students' Missionary As- 
sociation met in Faribault. February 15, Y. M. C. A. convention 
held in Faribault. February 26, Charles Shields died, aged 
eighty-three years. March 7, George Robinson, proprietor of 
the Brunswick, died. March 9, Bishop Thomas, of Kansas, died, 
age forty-one. Was connected with Seabury faculty 1864 to 
1870. March 21, Capt. Charles Shields died in Warsaw, age 
sixty. Nephew of Gen. James Shields. Came to Rice county 
in 1855. Served in the War of the Rebellion and attained the 
rank of captain. March 22, elevator and feed mill at Dundas, 
owned by Watson & Palon, was burned; loss $3,000. May 3, 
main building, Faribault Rattan Works, destroyed ; loss over 
$30,000. May 6, Louis Joachim, member of the Faribault police 
force, died of hydrophobia. May 8, Mrs. Jeanette Bion, widow of 
late Samuel Bion, died, aged fifty-nine. Came to Rice county 
in 1855. May 24, census enumerators for state census ap- 
pointed. Richland, E. L. Hoover; Wheeling, II. H. Helberg; 
Town of Northfield, William A. Bcnz; Walcott, Alfred Penz; 
Cannon City, B. A. Poison; Bridgewater and Dundas, A. A. 
Wescott; Warsaw. S. II. West; Wells, W. II. Orne; Forest, 
Simon Taylor; Webster, J. J. Hille; Morristown and village, 
A. J. Eddy; Shieldsville and Erin, I'. McKenna; Wheatland, 
Peter Fabre; city of Northfield, II. Bjoraker; Faribault, first 
ward J. W. Parshall, second ward W. X. Smith, third ward C. 
E. Smith, fourth ward F. S. Wilson. June 17. water struck in 
sinking artesian well at waterworks, Faribault, at 450 feet. June 
25, 26, 27, annual reunion of Cannon Valley Association of G. 


A. R. held in Faribault. June 24, Michael Jeffers drowned at 
Red Lake Falls; was old settler and register of deeds 1876 to 
1878. August 2, Clarine Bros, commenced building greenhouse. 
August 26, George Tileston drowned at St. Cloud. Was engaged 
in milling business in Faribault for several years with J. S. 
Hillyer from 1882 to 1889. September 24, the forty-first annual 
conference of the Methodist Episcopal church held in Faribault. 
September 23, John Monaghan's body found floating in Roberd's 
lake. No clue to mystery. September 30, Henry C. Whitney 
died in Minneapolis, age fifty-eight. Member of Company G, 
First Minnesota. October 9, street fair in Faribault; great suc- 
cess, 15,000 people in attendance. October 12, general conven- 
tion of the Episcopal church visited Faribault. October 22, 
Catholic Order of Foresters organized in Faribault. September 
29, tow factory at Faribault burned. September 28, Minnesota 
conference of Charities and Corrections held in Faribault. No- 
vember 3, Walcott mills totally destroyed by fire, with six dwell- 
ing houses, five loaded cars, 35,000 bushels of wheat, the elevator, 
sacks, cooperage and other property; loss $200,000; insurance 
$80,000. Mill employed sixty-five men. Output was 1,200 bar- 
rels. Northfield and Faribault fire departments called to fight 
fire. Mill first erected by Donald Grant and Edward Le May in 
1874; capacity eighty barrels. Purchased by M. B. Sheffield. 
Mill was 50x80, four stories in height. Fire started from spon- 
taneous combustion near an oil tank. November 9, Spencer J. 
Kingsley died, age fifty-nine. Was member of a New York 
regiment during war. Came to Faribault in 1867. December 9, 
10, state camp of Modern Woodmen of America held in Fari- 
bault. December 20, new factory of Westervelt & Ball com- 
pleted. December 19, Daniel Callaghan died in Erin, age 

. Was Union soldier; came to Rice county in 1856. 

December 20, work commenced to enlarge Polar Star property 
for 1,000-barrel flour mill by Sheffields. 

1896. January 5, Dr. George W. Wood died at Faribault, 
fifty-four years of age. Came to Faribault in 1873. Formed 
partnership with Dr. F. M. Rose. Member of State Board of 
Medical Examiners. Served one year as mayor, four years as 
state senator. January 8, dedication of Guild House. January 
17, commandery of Uniformed Rank of Knights of Pythias or- 
ganized. January 11, Rev. John Pavlin, pastor of Church of St. 
Lawrence, died. January 3i, Judge Buckham rendered decision 
favor of plaintiff in the case of State of Minnesota vs. The Cam 
non River Manufacturers' Association. January 27, fur goods 
factory burned in Northfield; loss $1,600. February 2, Col. J. 
C. Morrow died at Old Soldiers' Home, age fifty-seven. At close 
of war came to Faribault and practiced law. February 10, Mrs. 


Bridget Haain died, age seventy-one. Settled on West Prairie 
in 1864. February 11, Rev. Thomas B. Brown died, age seventy- 
seven. Old settler of Minnesota from 1860. February 20, fire 
nearly destroyed Opera House block at Faribault. May 5, Shef- 
fields Milling Company new mill started. May 8, Thomas Car- 
penter died, age sixty-four. Came to Faribault 1857, formed part- 
nership with Alexander Smith, under name Carpenter & Smith. 
Held office as councilman of first ward. June 23, fourth annual 
convention of Minnesota Association of Deaf held in Faribault. 
July 3, gang of thieves working in Faribault. Much damage 
done and many dollars' worth of goods taken ; no clue. July 10, 
Supreme Court dismissed the case of Minnesota vs. Waterworks 
Company and sustained lower court, county to get $2,200 back 
taxes. July 10, Mrs. George M. Gilmore died at Faribault, age 
sixty-nine. Came to Faribault in 1856. September 18, W. S. 
Snyder died in Warsaw, age fifty-six. Resident from 1856, 
member of Company B, Eighth Minnesota Volunteers. Oc- 
tober 20, daily mail route established to Cannon City. October 
22, formal opening of armory in Faribault. October 23, instal- 
lation of stained glass windows in German Catholic church. 
October 30, Mrs. Hannah Healy died, age seventy. With her 
husband, Jeremiah Healy, was first settler in Erin town. Sur- 
vived by six children and sixty-four grandchildren. November 
15, Mel ford L. Emery died, age forty-nine years. Was con- 
tractor and builder. Built high school, First National Bank 
and Masonic buildings, F. A. Theopold's warehouse, Second 
Street Armory and others. November 27, Sheffield Milling Com- 
pany completed new 40x50 engine room. 

1897. February 22, A. L. Hill died, age sixty-six. Prominent 
business man of Faribault. February 24, James M. Tower died, 
age seventy-three. Came to Faribault 1855. Cleared land upon 
what is now Central avenue and with his brother, George W. 
Tower, erected a store, the second in the village. February 26, 
Brunnan Harper died, age sixty-five. Came to Faribault in 

1854. March 8, Henry Chaffee died, age seventy year-. Came 
to Faribault in 1855. Short time in grocery business with E. 
W. Leavens. Served as county auditor and councilman April 
1, Frank A. Davis died, age fifty-eight years. Served in Union 
army, also in navy. Business man of Faribault from 1873. April 
( K the twenty-fifth anniversary of the incorporation of Faribault 
celebrated. May 6, Angeline Henderson died at her home in 
Faribault. Mrs. Henderson settled on a farm in Prairieville in 

1855. She was seventy years old. April 30, William T. Keicke- 
napp died at his home in Faribault. Mr. Keickcnapp came to 
Faribault in 1856 and was seventy years old at the time of his 
death. He was a member of Company D, Sixth Minnesota. 


July 6, storms passed over the county, doing much damage. 
Crops in sections damaged ; freight train ditched not far from 
Medford ; many bridges in both city and country carried away. 
August 6, Vincent Lieb died, age sixty-three years. Came to 
Faribault in 1856, settled in Wells town ; moved to Faribault 
1891. August 20, William L. Turner died, age seventy-three. 
Came to Faribault in 1866. Engaged in the lumber business. 
August 21, David Haskins died, age ninety. Came to Faribault 
in 1855. August 23, Isaac R. Pentz died at Walcott, age eighty- 
three. Settled in Walcott in 1855. August 28, man believed to 
be Charles Nelson died suddenly in a saloon at Faribault. Au- 
gust 29, coroner's jury rendered verdict that deceased Nelson 
came to death by strangulation. September 23, Mrs. Kate D. 
Cole died in Faribault, age sixty-three, widow of late Gordon 
E. Cole. October 4, S. T. La Rose, manager of Clement Elevator 
at Milwaukee station, Faribault, fell into a well, sustaining in- 
juries from which he died October 6. October 14, Hon. Tosten 

E. Blonde, of Wheeling, died, age . Settled in county 

in 1855. Held several town offices, also member of legislature 
1891. October 24, Gustave Volkmann, a blind man, found dead 
under Second street bridge, Faribault. Coroner's jury rendered 
verdict of murder. The evidence in case showed that a pocket- 
book was missing, which was believed to have contained a large 
sum of money. Near spot where body was found was large pool 
of blood. On examination, body revealed a large scalp wound. 
No water in lungs. November 15, C. O. Holen, of Wheeling, 
chloroformed and robbed of $395 on north road. December 2, 
Plummer P. Kinsey died, age fifty-six. Member of Company I, 
Sixth Iowa Volunteer Infantry. Came to Faribault 1876. En- 
gaged in dry good business. December 28, George M. Gilmore 
died of suffocation by coal gas. Came to Faribault in 1855. Lo- 
cated on farm which now forms part of State School for Feeble 

1898. January 7, Faribault public library formal opening. 
January 15, Mrs. Matilda Forkey found dead in her house 
on Roberd's Lake road. Had been shot five times with a 
revolver. February 4, Cornelius Forkey accused of wife 
murder, had a hearing before Justice Donahue. January 31, 
Dr. W. H. Stevens, one of the oldest residents of Faribault, 
died, age eighty-four years. In 1856 located in Faribault and 
erected a drug store. February 5, James Cummings died in 
Shieldsville. Came to Wells town in 1853. Age was ninety-three 
years. March 17, James Nolan, pioneer of Richland, died, age 
seventy-five years. Settled in about 1858. April 29, Company 
B, Second Minnesota National Guards, left for Fort Snelling. 
May 6, Grant Terryll, former first lieutenant, commissioned cap- 


tain of Company B. The Second Minnesota changed to Twelfth 
Minnesota Volunteer Infantry. May 12, Cornelius Bilion 
(Forkey) acknowledges killing of wife; pleaded self-defense. 
July 20, old fireman's building on Frst avenue, between Third 
and Fourth streets, Faribault, torn down. July 17, Ellen 
O'Brien, wife of Michael Brazil, died, age sixty-nine. Settled 
in Wells town in 1855. August 12, A. L. Carufel, of firm of 
Carufel & Hatch, died, age thirty-five. Death result of an explo- 
sion of gas. September 18, Sergt. Conrad L. Roell, Company B, 
Twelfth Minnesota Volunteers, died at Camp Thomas, Chicka- 
mauga. September 22, Company B returns home. November 
1, postoffice at Dean reopened, Adolf Ludwig postmaster. No- 
vember 6, Hon. Ara Barton died, seventy-four years of age. 
Served in Brackett's battalion, Minnesota cavalry, as captain of 
Troop D. 

1899. January 11. Capt. Henry Piatt died, age seventy years. 
Came to Warsaw in 1856. Member of Company I, First Min- 
nesota. Served two terms as member of legislature and for 
years was chairman of town board. January 23, school house on 
First avenue and Twelfth street, Faribault, was opened. January 
29, Robert Dudley, of Wells town, died, age seventy-seven. 
Came to Rice county 1856. Ex-Sheriff Charles Wood died. 
Came to Faribault in 1854. Took claim upon which St. James' 
school now stands. Served two terms as sheriff of county, also 
two terms in legislature. The first bridge built across Straight 
river was built by him on Second street. February 10. William 
Kaiser appointed postmaster at Faribault. March 19, Rev. Ed- 
mund Gale, 232 South Exchange street, St. Paul, died, age 
seventy-seven. Was pastor of the Congregational church at 
Faribault from 1866 to 1873. May 12, Mrs. O. F. Brand died 
in Faribault, age fifty-nine years. June 7, thirty-ninth annual 
session of Diocesan Council of the Episcopal church met in 
Faribault. July 1, Faribault postoffice placed in $16,000 class. 
July 20, Masked robbers enter Chicago, Minneapolis & St. Paul 
railroad depot at Faribault, secured $37.17 and left the night 
operator locked in a freight car. August 3, Security Bank moved 
into Theopold block. Faribault. September 1, carrier No. 4 
added to the Faribault postoffice. October 15, Millidge B. Shef- 
field died, age sixty-nine. Came to Faribault in 1865. Was 
engaged in flour milling. December 12. Nelson Kelsey, of Can- 
non City, killed by a bull. Was sixty-one years of age and 
member of Company E, Ninth Pennsylvania Cavalry. December 
27, new Ware auditorium opened to public in Xorthfield. De- 
cember 15. streets in Faribault renamed. December 16, dynamite 
explosion occurred in Faribault : three persons injured and con- 
siderable property damaged. Dynamite was being used in grad- 


ing C. G. W. yard. December 22, Cannon Valley depot entered 
and over $1,000 in time checks taken. 

1900. January 1, opening of new depot in Faribault on C. 
G. W. January 7, Sister Mary Gertrude Power, O. S. D., died 
at Sinsinawa, Wis. Came to Faribault about thirty-five years 
ago and through her efforts the Catholic schools were established. 
January 15, S. G. Rathbone died at Hastings, Minn. Was one of 
old citizens of Faribault and agent of the Walker stage line. 
Also was owner of livery now known as Leary's livery. January 
29, fire destroyed larger part of business section of Morristown, 
Minn. Twenty buildings, including the bank, postoffice, printing 
office and hotel in ashes; losses placed at $35,000. February 4, 
Rev. J. H. Albert takes charge of Congregational church, Fari- 
bault. February 7, Farmers' Elevator at Faribault burned; 
losses estimated at $17,000; insurance $11,000. February 6, Otto 
Kozlowski, founder and manager of Farmer Seed Company, died, 
age thirty-six. February 13-14, Farmers' Institute held in Fari- 
bault. February 4, Mrs. Sarah Morris Pool died at Fleming, 
Colo. Was at one time owner of townsite of Morristown. Feb- 
ruary 20, reception held in Armory in honor of Rev. J. J. Conry, 
of Church of Immaculate Conception, by parishioners. Father 
Conry came to Faribault in 1891 and- found debt of $16,000 on 
the church. Through his efforts the debt was raised. March 1, 
George R. Simpson, county superintendent of schools, died in 
Chicago, 111., age forty-nine. Was principal of Faribault high 
school nine years and elected superintendent of schools in 1898. 
April 13, Ware's auditorium in Northfield burned ; loss $8,000. 
April 25, bank for A. H. Ridgeway & Son in Morristown erected. 
Laufenberg & Ebel's store in Morristown burned ; loss $10,000. 
Adjoining buildings were severely damaged. April 17, the Golf 
Club at Faribault organized. April 25, death of Mr. Hagerty, an 
old pioneer of Shieldsville. May 2, the Chicago Great Western 
depot in Warsaw burned. May 9, Dr. Jackson bought the first 
locomobile in Faribault. May 11, Dr. Jackson has a serious acci- 
dent at Cannon lake with his locomobile. The doctor had several 
ribs and his collar bone broken. June 8, Robert Pugh, who was 
an old settler of this county, died at his home in Faribault. Mr. 
Pugh came to Minnesota in 1856. He was for many years con- 
nected with the Learys in the livery business. June 27, a south- 
bound freight train on the Milwaukee road wrecked one mile 
south of Dundas. July 11, a new building at the corner of 
Main and Fourth streets in Faribault completed by J. W. 
Schultz. July 18, the elevator at the northwest corner of Third 
and Willow streets, at Faribault, which was formerly owned 
by Hutchinson & Stockton, was purchased by the Sheffield Mill- 
ing Company and removed to the southeast corner of the same 


streets. July 14, Albert Cabot died at Medford at the age of 
eighty-six. Mr. Cabot was one of the first settlers of Rice 
county, having settled in Walcott at a very early day. July 18, 
contract let for the construction of the Burlington, Cedar Rapids 
& Northern railroad to D. Grant & Co., of Faribault. September 
12, the first electric carriage made by the Electric Vehicle Com- 
pany, of Faribault, was given a trial test in the vicinity of Fari- 
bault. September 23, Henry S. Wait was killed in the cyclone 
at Morristown. Mr. Wait was born in the town of Warsaw in 
1862. September 23, a destructive cyclone wiped out a portion 
of the village of Morristown. Eight people were killed and four 
seriously injured. The cyclone struck the village at 5 :30 p. m. 
There were few people on the streets at the time, and those that 
were there, upon seeing the approaching storm, hurriedly sought 
refuge in a one-story brick building on Division street. The 
structure was in the direct path of the cyclone and it was leveled 
to the ground, burying eleven persons in its ruins, killing seven 
of them outright and seriously injuring the rest. Immediately 
after the storm passed a large force of men began the search 
for the victims of the storm. Medical aid from Faribault and 
Waterville arrived late in the evening. Those found dead were 
Henry S. Wait, of the town of Warsaw; Otto Gatzke, aged nine- 
teen, son of Paul Gatzke; Johnnie Rohrer, twenty-five, son of S. 
B. Rohrer; Elmer Brooks, nineteen, son of William M. Brooks; 
Jacob Miller, twenty-four, town of Morristown; Jacob Weber, 
twenty-three, town of Morristown ; Frank Pittman, fifty, Water- 
ville. The injured were Louis Pittman, aged twelve years; Paul 
Gatzke, owner of the building; Fred Wilder; Porter White. 
Many buildings were carried bodily for considerable distance 
and much damage was done by Hying missies. September 26, 
llaltus Soule, aged seventy-one years, died at the soldiers' home. 
He came to Minnesota in 1854 and settled in Morristown. In 
April, 1861, he enlisted in Company G, First .Minnesota, lie 
was in the first battle of Bull Run, Edwards Ferry, through 
Peninsula campaign at Antietam, and received wounds for which 
he was discharged in 1863. Returning to Morristown after his 
discharge, he lived there until 1804. when, after the death of 
his wife, he went to the Soldier's Home. October 3, several 
washouts occurred along the Chicago Great Western railway. 
A landslide occurred at Fourteenth street in Faribault and the 
track was covered with sand. October 19, Joseph C. Mold died 
at his home in Faribault, aged sixty-six years. Mr. Mold 
came to Faribault in the spring of 1855. He enlisted in Company 
B, Eighth Minnesota Volunteer Infantry, and was mustered out 
of service July 16, 1865. The regiment took part in the Indian 
War, having formed a part of General Sibley's force. In 1864 


it went south and was engaged in the battle of Murfreesboro. 
Afterwards it was sent east to North Carolina, where it remained 
to the close of the war. Mr. Mold served a term as commander 
of Michael Cook Post, G. A. R. 

1901. January 17, the office of Westervelt & Ball's carriage 
shop at Faribault robbed. Rev. Samuel Andrews, the pastor 
of the Presbyterian church of Faribault, was killed by the cars 
at Wabasso. January 24, Kemple's jewelry store at Faribault 
burglarized. January 27, Hon. Edward Hollister died at his 
home in Fresno, Cal., aged sixty-eight years. Mr. Hollister 
came to Minnesota in the spring of 1855. He removed to Cali- 
fornia in 1900. Mr. Hollister was a member of Company G of 
the First Minnesota. He was wounded at the first battle of 
Bull Run, and on account of this disability he was discharged 
about two weeks later. February 22, the Methodist church at 
Faribault badly damaged by fire. March 7, the Merchants Hotel 
at Morristown opened. April 24, the barns of Thomas McCall, 
Dr. W. H. Robilliard, and one on the place recently owned by 
J. W. Kollman, were burned, together with most of their con- 
tents, causing a total loss of $1,200. April 28, Ole Olin, Sr., died 
at his home in Faribault, aged sixty-three years. Mr. Olin 
came to Faribault in 1866. June 20, Hon. H. M. Matteson died 
at his home in Faribault, aged eighty-three years. Mr. Matteson 
came to Minnesota in 1854, locating in St. Paul, where he en- 
gaged in the lumber business, but later pre-empted land and 
water power at Dundas. After a year he removed to Warsaw. 
In company with Mr. Hulett he purchased the water power on 
Cannon river, now occupied by the Klemer woolen mill, and 
moved the mill from Cannon City, eventually purchasing Mr. 
Hulett's interest. Mr. Matteson was elected to the legislature 
in 1872, and he filled local offices of minor importance. June 29, 
a heavy storm passed over Rice county; considerable damage 
was done by lightning and hail besides that done by the rain. 
July 10, the coal sheds erected at the Milwaukee depot at Fari- 
bault. July 12, Capt. John D. Hunt died in Waterville, aged 
seventy-six years. Mr. Hunt came to Minnesota in the early 
fifties, taking up a farm in the southwest part of Morristown, 
where he resided ten years, when he removed to Waterville. 
August 4, Remi Payant died at his home in Faribault at the age 
of sixty-eight years. Mr. Payant was one of the very earliest 
pioneers who made their homes in Faribault, having come here 
from Canada in 1854, at the age of twenty-one. Soon after he 
married Odelia Paquin, also of Faribault, who was the mother 
of eight children, seven of whom survive. In 1909 Mr. Payant 
was married a second time, to Josephine Payant, of Ottawa, 
Canada. She also survives him. August 14, Dr. F. G. Flesher 


died at his home in Faribault. Dr. Flesher was the city and 
county physician. August 10, Harvey Scott, and old pioneer of 
Rice county, died at his home near Prairieville, aged eighty-three 
years. Mr. Scott settled in Faribault in 1854. He came here 
from Ohio, but was a native of New Jersey. He and his brother, 
James Scott, at first engaged in the milling business at Faribault 
and afterwards bought a farm in Richland, where he lived for 
many years. When he became too old for active labor he sold 
his farm and removed to Faribault, and afterwards went to 
Prairieville, where he died. August 22, the Farmers' Elevator 
in Northfield burned, with 1,400 bushels of grain. August 22, 
John B. Wheeler, a pioneer settler of Faribault, died at his home 
in that city. He was born at Northbridge, Mass., May 18, 1822. 
In 1853 he married Clara L. Slocomb, and in May, 1856, Mr. 
and Mrs. Wheeler came to Faribault, and the following year 
opened a drug store at the corner of Second and Main streets, 
in company with William Thayer. He soon purchased his 
partner's interest and introduced general merchandise. He was 
county commissioner of Rice county for several years and a 
director in the Citizens National Bank. For some time previous 
to 1888 Mr. W. H. Wheeler was a partner with his father. 
Owing to ill health, Mr. Wheeler retired from active business in 
1899. September 15, the German Methodist church at Fari- 
bault dedicated. September 16, death of Bishop Whipple. Oc- 
tober 9, the Fairview house, a three-story wooden house on the 
corner of Second street and Fifth avenue, at Faribault, burned. 
October 1, the postoffice at Richland discontinued. November 
10, dedication of the German Evangelical church at Faribault. 
November 15, Prof. Hiram A. Pratt died at his home in Fari- 
bault. December 4, the postoffice at Morristown moved into 
the old bank building on the corner of Division and Franklin 
streets. December 16, the first train on the Burlington, Cedar 
Rapids & Northern railway entered Faribault. December 17, 
the Faribault Rattan Works burned; loss $6,000. December 13, 
the Faribault rug factory badly damaged by fire. 

1902. January 1, the Burlington, Cedar Rapids & Northern 
railway depot complete. January 15, the North American Tele- 
graph Company opened an office at Faribault. January 14, 
Edwin R. Wood died at his home in Faribault, aged sixty-throe 
years eight months. January 11, Truman L. Nutting died at 
his home in Faribault. Mr. Nutting came to Faribault in 1856, 
where he resided until four years ago, when he moved to 
Waterville. He again removed to Faribault a rear previous to 
his death. April 24, Louis Peavy died at his home in Faribault, 
aged seventy years. Mr. Peavy came to Faribault from Iowa 
in 1874 and opened a photograph gallery, which business he 


continued to conduct with excellent success until a few months 
previous to his death. April 23, H. N. Crossett died at his 
home in Faribault, aged sixty-nine years. May 3, death of 
Senator A. W. Stockton, of Faribault. Mr. Stockton was born 
in Kosciusko county, Indiana, March 30, 1844. When Mr. 
Stockton was eighteen years old he enlisted in Company B, 
Twenty-fifth Wisconsin. His regiment was first ordered to Fort 
Snelling to put down the Indian outbreak, and went south in 
1863. Mr. Stockton was severely wounded by gunshot in the 
battle of Peach Tree Orchard, Georgia. He came to Faribault 
in 1865. He accepted the position of deputy county auditor, a 
position which he held for twelve years and resigned to take the 
position as cashier of the First National Bank. After holding 
this office for about two years he resigned and went into a part- 
nership for the manufacture of furniture in the Flint Furniture 
Company. In 1886 the Faribault Furniture Company and the 
Faribault Roller Mill Company were organized, Hutchinson & 
Stockton, proprietors. June 6, Charles Nichols, formerly of Fari- 
bault, died at his home in Morristown. Mr. Nichols came to 
Minnesota in 1856, spending the winter with relatives at Hast- 
ings, Minn. He married Rebecca Sanford. In the spring of 
1857 he pre-empted a homestead near Kenyon, upon which they 
lived four years and then returned to Boston, where he resumed 
his former business. In the fall of 1864 they came again to Min- 
nesota and purchased a farm southwest of Faribault, which 
was his family home until 1894, when Mr. Nichols retired from 
active duties of farm life and settled in Morristown, where he 
spent the remainder of his life. June 25, a town to be known as 
Lonsdale, platted by the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul railway 
in the center of section 26 in the town of Wheatland. July 14, a 
severe wind storm did considerable damage at Northfield. Every 
windmill in the path of the storm was blown down, trees were 
blown down, chimneys toppled over, etc. The barn on John 
Linster's farm was blown down and the smokestack of Ame's 
mill fell upon the bridge across the river, doing considerable 
damage to the same. July 11, Charles Louis La Grave died 
at his home in Minneapolis, aged eighty-eight years. Mr. 
La Grave was for a number of years a resident of Faribault, 
having come here from Cassville, Wis., where he was a leading 
merchant. He engaged in the mercantile business in this city 
in company with Charles McKenna and Frank Forbes, under 
the firm name of C. L. La Grave & Co. After going out of 
business he removed to Minneapolis, where he has since resided. 
Mr. La Grave married Ann Elizabeth Forbes in 1839. He built 
one of the first houses in Minneapolis and visited St. Anthony 
Falls twelve years before Colonel Stevens arrived. July 19, 


Marva Pye, second daughter ol C. G. Pye, aged eighteen, and 
Eva Faskin, daughter of Mrs. Asa Beebe, and sister of Mrs. 
M. L. Dungley, of Faribault, were drowned while boating in 
Lake Jefferson. August 20, the new concrete floor in the south 
wing of the main building at the School for the Deaf at Fari- 
bault gave way, falling on the two floors beneath, and carried 
them to the basement, a distance of forty-five feet. Warren 
Smith, Eugene Perkins and Charles Aiman were severely in- 
jured. August 23, Fred Henry, of Faribault, committed suicide 
in view of his parents, while in a fit of temporary insanity. He 
was twenty-one years old. September 17, John R. Parshall died 
at his home in Faribault, aged sixty-seven years. Mr. Parshall 
came to Faribault in 1854. November 2, the memorial tower 
and bells at the cathedral at Faribault dedicated. September 6, 
Hon. Charles L. Lowell died at his home in Faribault. Mr. 
Lowell was born in Knox county, Maine, October 3, 1829. He 
was admitted to the bar in 1850, and practiced until 1855, when 
he came to Faribault. He afterwards removed to Wilton, Wa- 
seca county, with his father and a few others, who platted the 
town. He was married in 1851 to Georgia Berry, who died 
in 1887. In 1888 he married Mary Elizabeth House, who sur- 
vives him. In 1854 he returned from Wilton to Faribault and 
engaged in law practice and after several years abandoned it 
and engaged in mercantile pursuits. Resuming his law practice 
after a lapse of some years, he continued, in connection with 
real estate and insurance, until his death. He held the office of 
city recorder five years, from 1873 to 1877, and elected mayor in 
1884 and re-elected without opposition in 1885. November 26, 
the firm of Kelly & Davison dissolved partnership. Decem- 
ber 24, the main building for the School for the Feeble Minded at 
Faribault was badly damaged by fire; loss estimated at $10,000. 
1903. February 24, Mrs. Margaret Sawyer, wife of A. E. 
Sawyer, died at the Hunter hospital at Faribault. March 11, 
ice in Straight river wrecked the bridge on the Rock Island road 
a mile and a half south of Faribault, stopping the traffic from 
Albert Lea to Conius Junction. March 19, Agnes May Green- 
wood, an assistant nurse at Shattuck School, lost her life by 
being run over by a train on the Rock Island tracks at the 
Eighth street crossing at Faribault. March 25, a freight train 
collided with a gravel train on the Milwaukee road in the big 
cut a mile north of the city of Faribault. April 2, the butter 
tub factory located at Faribault. April 29, the Polar Star Elec- 
tric Company purchased the water power, mill, machinery and 
thirty-five acres of land known as the Scott's mill property, 
1< >cri ted on Cannon river, about four miles north of Faribault. 
May 5, Charles Humphrey, formerly of Faribault, while in a tit 


of temporary insanity, committed suicide at Wellington, Kan. 
June 10, the first passenger train entered Faribault on the down- 
town track of the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul railway. 
June 10, a freight train on the Rock Island road was wrecked 
below the School for the Feeble Minded at Faribault. Thirteen 
loaded cars were thrown from the track down a high embank- 
ment. June 17, Joseph Closson died at his home in Northfield, 
aged eighty-four years. Mr. Closson was one of the early set- 
tlers of Rice county. July 15, the new building at the Rice 
county poor farm completed. July 25, Hon. Hudson Wilson died 
at his home in Faribault. Mr. Wilson was born in the town of 
Concord, Ohio, November 10, 1830. He graduated from Kirt- 
land Academy, after which he went to Painesville and engaged 
in the mercantile business. In 1855 he removed to Madison, 
Wis., where for two years he engaged in the hardware trade. 
Early in February, 1857, he came to Minnesota and settled in 
Faribault, where, in company with Hiram Wilson, he operated 
a private bank, the firm name being Wilson & Co., which con- 
tinued for several years, when Hiram Wilson withdrew. In 
1871 the Citizens National Bank of Faribault was incorporated, 
with Hudson Wilson president and Z. S. Wilson cashier. Hud- 
son Wilson continued to hold the presidency until his death, 
making forty-six years of continuous service, which is the longest 
term of any banker in the state. Mr. Wilson was for thirty-three 
years a trustee and treasurer of the State School for Defectives. 
He was the chairman of the Board of County Commissioners 
for nine years. He was elected a member of the Minnesota 
house of representatives in 1888 and served one term. Previous 
to the organization of the city he was connected with the town 
government. July 30, J. R. Summer died at his home in North- 
field, aged sixty-seven years. Mr. Summer was an old pioneer 
of Rice county. September 24, O. F. Brand, of Faribault, lost 
his hand by being caught in an ensilage cutter. September 27, 
eight cars of a freight train on the Rock Island road were 
wrecked at the West Third street crossing in Northfield. Oc- 
tober 21, William O'Brien, of Faribault, was assaulted and robbed 
in St. Paul. November 27, Henry F. Johnson, a farmer living 
east of Northfield, was accidentally killed by falling from a hay- 
stack and breaking his neck. Mr. Johnson was sixty years old. 
December 9, Daniel Burget was drowned in Cannon river just 
above Sheffield's mill at Faribault. Mr. Burget was ninety-one 
years old and was an old settler of Rice county. 

1904. January 6, Prof. George A. Franklin, superintendent 
of the public schools of Faribault, chosen president of the Min- 
nesota Educational Association. January 30, Hon. H. L. Luther 
died at his home in Faribault, aged forty-nine years. February 


17, Edward E. Rosell, a pupil at the School for the Deaf, was 
killed by the railroad. February 24, Hon. A. D. Keyes died at 
the home of his brother-in-law, George A. Weston. Mr. Keyes 
was sixty-two years old and had been a resident of Faribault for 
thirty-two years. April 6, C. H. Klemer, an old resident of Fari- 
bault, died at his home, aged eighty years. May 11, Thomas J. 
Curtiss, a former citizen of Faribault, committed suicide at 
Tyndall, S. D. June 7, a fire consumed a number of leading 
buildings at Nerstrand. The records and stamps of the post- 
office were destroyed. July 13, the Faribault canning factory 
burned; loss $23,000. August 17, the Graham bridge over Can- 
non river at Faribault broke down under a threshing t'ngine and 
precipitated it into the river, twenty feet below. September 1, 
Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Winkley celebrated their sixtieth wedding 
anniversary. They settled in Faribault in 1856. Frederick Doep- 
ping committed suicide on the Milwaukee track by throwing 
himself before a passing freight. September 21, Mr. and Mrs. 
Samuel Fish died at their home in Faribault. Mrs. Fish died 
five hours after her husband died. September 21, the manual 
training department of the Faribault public schools was removed 
from the Central school building to the high school building. 
September 28, Senators Fairbanks, Clapp and Dolliver and Hon. 
R. C. Dunn gave over two thousand citizens of Faribault a short 
visit at the Rock Island depot. October 5, Marion J. Torguson 
was accidentally shot and instantly killed at the home of his 
parents on the Walcott road. October 19, Henry A. Haley com- 
mitted suicide at the home of his sister, Mrs. Lee, at Faribault. 
He was twenty years old. November 27, Gilbert Chase died at 
his home in Faribault. December 6, the postoffice at Morristown 
was robbed. 

1905. January 3, the First National Bank at Faribault closed 
its doors owing to a deficiency in the reserve fund of the said 
bank. Rev. C. C. Camp died at Seabury Divinity School at 
Faribault. Rev. Camp was warden of Seabury Hall. He was 
the valedictorian of the Yale class of 77. January 11, franchise 
was granted to the Rice County Rural Telephone Company by 
the common council of the city of Faribault. January 17, Mrs, 
Mary Keney, aged eighty-six years, was burned at her home in 
Faribault. February 7. Anna C. Casscrly, an inmate of the 
School for the Feeble Minded, wandered from the institution to 
the Rock Island tracks, where she was run over by the morning 
passenger and instantly killed. February 8. T. B. Clement, of 
Faribault, was placed under arrest pending an investigation as 
to the financial condition of the First National Bank of Fari- 
bault, of which Mr. Clement was the president. February 14. a 
passenger train on the Chicago Great Western road was wrecked 


one mile south of Nerstrand. March 10, the Corcoran-Strand 
Butter Tub Company's factory at Faribault was damaged to the 
extent of $10,000 by fire. The Polar Star Electric Company has 
secured the franchise for lighting the city of Faribault for 
eighteen years. March 25, Leroy Woodruff was accidentally 
shot and killed north of the city of Faribault. April 1, Mary 
Harmel, while crossing the Rock Island tracks in Faribault, was 
struck by a passing train and instantly killed. April 19, the 
Faribault butter tub factory re-established in a new location in 
Faribault. April 26, the old wooden building located at the 
corner of Central avenue and Fourth street, at Faribault, was 
torn down. This building was built in 1855. July 26, Hon. B. 
B. Sheffield, ex-mayor of Faribault and president of the First 
National Bank, removed to Minneapolis. The report of the 
census enumerators of Rice county for the year 1905 is 26,837 
people. August 17, William P. Jewett. formerly of Faribault, 
died at his home in St. Paul. August 28, Rev. E. Steele Peake, 
who was the rector of St. Mary's for twenty-one years, died at 
his home in Valley City, N. D. August 28, Clara Meyer, aged 
twenty-one years, committed suicide at her home in Wheeling. 
September 6, the Chase State Bank incorporated. September 27, 
Ole Hagen and Andrew Gilbertson were killed and four others 
seriously injured by an explosion of a traction engine at Lons- 
dale. November 15, T. B. Clement, president of the First Na- 
tional Bank of Faribault, was sentenced to eight years' imprison- 
ment for misplacement of the funds of that bank. December 9, 
Daniel Lyons was run over and instantly killed by a fast Rock 
Island train just below the Imbecile school at Faribault. 

1906. January 17, Cadet Daniel B. Graves, of Shattuck school 
at Faribault, lost his life in a coasting accident on the footpath 
which leads to the school. January 29, Archbishop Ireland dedi- 
cated the pipe organ at the Church of Immaculate Conception 
at Faribault. February 7, a four-days-old child was found dead 
in the snow at the Milwaukee and Great Western railway cross- 
ing at Faribault by Louis Hanson and Ole Pulkrist. February 
28, Wilkoski & Wolf's store at Morristown destroyed by fire. 
March 21, F. W. Frink, ex-auditor of Faribault, died. Mr. Frink 
came to Minnesota in 1854. March 21, Patrick Shea, of North- 
field, mysteriously met his death near the Milwaukee tracks, near 
the depot at Northfield. May 27, the Congregational church at 
Faribault celebrated its fiftieth anniversary. May 3, the clothing 
store of Carpenter & Smith was burglarized. Herman Yanke 
was arrested for the same and plead guilty. June 10, the mem- 
bers of St. John's Evangelical church at Wheeling celebrated 
the fiftieth anniversary of its organization. June 12, Maj. David 
Misener, who came to Faribault in 1856, died at his home at 


Goodwin, S. D., aged eighty-three years. July 31, a threshing 
engine belonging to W. S. Talbot, of the town of Bridgewater, 
broke through the bridge across the north channel of Cannon 
river, near Klemer's woolen factory, and fell a distance of fifteen 
feet. Mr. Talbot, the owner of the machine, and Henry Miller, 
the engineer, went down with the engine, but sustained only 
light injuries. September 26, John Peterson started a furniture 
factory at Faribault in the building previously occupied by the 
Schimmel Piano Company. October 17, Francis Albrecht Theo- 
pold died at his home in Faribault, aged seventy-three years. 
December 8, Charles D. McKellip, of Faribault, died in Chicago, 
aged sixty-three years. Mr. McKellip was for many years a 
prominent citizen of Faribault. He was a member of Company 
D, Eleventh Minnesota, which formed a part of the Army of 

1907. January 17, L. A. Fish, who came to Faribault in 
1858, died at Pilatk, Fla., aged seventy-four years. February 
27, the Washington and Lincoln schoolhouses at Faribault were 
completed. The two schoolhouses are exact duplicates of each 
other. The Lincoln schoolhouse is situated west of the Mil- 
waukee tracks and the Washington schoolhouse is situated on 
the east side of the town. April 1, Hurlburt O. Clement, son of 
T. B. Clement, died at his home in Faribault. April 24, the W. 
McC. Reid residence, on the corner of Third avenue and Seventh 
street, completed. May 14, Charles Hutchinson, who was a resi- 
dent of the city of Faribault for twenty-one years, died at his 
home in that city, aged fifty-seven years. May 29, Mrs. Schultz. 
of Dundas, was found dead in Cannon river. The circumstances 
regarding her death were a mystery. May 20, Edwin Sherwin. 
of Nerstrand, committed suicide at his home. June 17, while 
bathing in the mill pond above Klemer's woolen mill at Fari- 
bault, Arthur Filler, son of Mr. and Mrs. Andrew Filler, of 
Faribault, met his death by drowning. June 19, Mr. and Mrs. 
Peter Roth celebrated their golden wedding anniversary at their 
home in Faribault. July 24, George Pease died at his home in 
Faribault. Mr. Pease was born in Faribault May 21, 1863. Mr. 
Pease was the cashier of the Citizens National Bank at Fari- 
bault. August 14, a public library was secured for Dundas. 
August 14, Dr. Carl A. Klemer died at Berlin, Germany. Sep- 
tember 8, cornerstone laid for German Evangelical church at 
Faribault. September 14, fiftieth anniversary of the Salem 
church, of East Prairie. September 14. Dennis Hagerty, an old 
settler of Shieldsville, died. September 18, E. M. Leach, promi- 
nent citizen of Faribault, died, age seventy-seven. Member of 
the firm of E, M. Leach & Son. Came to Faribault in 1854. 
October 3, annual confederation of women's clubs met in Pari- 


bault. November 21, Joseph Kahn died, seventy-three years of 
age. Came to Faribault in 1857 and entered into a partnership 
with James Bachrach in the clothing business, under the name 
Jim & Joe. December 1, a residence in Faribault formerly 
owned by Mrs. Barron and at one time a part of the old St. 
Mary's hall burned. December 15, Evangelical church at Fari- 
bault dedicated. 

1908. January 18, Mark Wells died in Grand Forks, N. D. 
Was seventy-nine years of age. Came to Faribault with Luke 
Hulett in 1853. Was a member of Company B, Eighth Minne- 
sota, but was discharged after one year for disability. January 
22, new Eighth street bridge opened. Mrs. J. J. Dow died, fifty- 
nine years of age. With Mr. Dow, she constituted the first class 
of Carleton College. February 10, Mrs. Sarah B. Wilson died 
at her home in Faribault. Mrs. Wilson came to Faribault in 1857. 
March 11, Hiram H. Livingston, a son of Charles C. Livingston, 
designed and completed a wireless telegraph instrument which 
proved itself a success, having been exhibited before several 
scientific societies, where it was pronounced very satisfactory. 
March 23, Hon. Christian Erb died at his home in Faribault. Mr. 
Erb came to Rice county in 1855 and settled in the town of 
Wheeling. April 12, Ira C. Aldrich died, age sixty-eight years. 
Member of Company I, Seventh Minnesota ; charter member of 
Michael Cook Post, G. A. R. May 15, bill passed in congress 
giving Faribault a $50,000 federal building. May 18, Eugene B. 
Dickinson died, age fifty-six. Came to Faribault in 1873. May 
14, Patrick McKenna died in Shieldsville, age seventy-nine years. 
Came to Shieldsville in 1856. Only four white families in village. 
Town constable in 1858. In 1874 elected justice of peace. Was 
also postmaster eighteen years. June 9, the First National Bank 
at Faribault paid one-third dividend. June 10, the Armory and 
library building at Shattuck school at Faribault dedicated. June 
10, Hon. Charles Eighenbrodt died at his home in Faribault. 
He came to Rice county in 1858. In 1898 Mr. Eighenbrodt was 
elected to the Minnesota legislature. June 19, David Reed, who 
came to Rice county in 1855, died at his home in Faribault, 
aged seventy-seven years. Mr. Reed was a member of Com- 
pany B, Eighth Minnesota Volunteers. June 17, the fiftieth 
anniversary convention of the Central Baptist Association was 
held in Faribault. October 4, the German Methodist church at 
Nerstrand was dedicated. September 27, the cornerstone for 
the St. Lucas hospital at Faribault laid. November 28, George 
W. Damp died at his home in Faribault, aged seventy-one years. 
He was a member of the First Wisconsin Cavalry. He also 
served two terms in the legislature, in 1889 and 1895. December 
21, the charter commission of the city of Faribault organized. 


1909. January 1, Isaac E. Bruckman died at his home in Fari- 
bault from taking carbolic acid. He was the city recorder for 
eight years. January 4, A. F. Burnham died at San Diego, Cal., 
aged seventy-four years. He was in business in Faribault from 
1875 to 1894. February 11, B. L. Van Horn died at his home in 
Faribault, aged seventy-four years. He came to Faribault in 
1856. February 28, Rev. James Flemming, pastor of the church 
at Shieldsville, died, aged fifty-six years. April 13-23, the Stare 
Art Exhibit held at Faribault. May 6, Mrs Mary Kirk died at 
her home in Wells township. Came to Rice county in 1855. 
She was eighty years old. June 13, Dr. N. H. Dale died in Fari- 
bault, aged seventy-eight years. June 8, the common council of 
Northfield passed a no-license ordinance. June 21, August Mor- 
tenson died in Faribault, aged seventy-nine years. June 29, 
Mrs. Dupna and daughter instantly killed when hit by a Rock 
Island train at a crossing in Faribault. August 27, dedication 
of the St. Lucas church at Faribault. September 17, Milan X. 
Pond died, aged seventy-nine years. Came to Rice county in 
1854, took a claim in Prairieville. With his brother he purchased 
of F. W. Frink the Rice county "Herald." October 8, Frederick 
Lemke died in Wells township, aged forty-three years. Settled 
in Wells 1874. Member of the legislature in 1900 and 1903. Oc- 
tober 26, Thomas Murray, a fisherman, murdered at Cannon 
lake. La Rose, a partner of Murray's, was found unconscious; 
died later. Thought to be the work of tramps. December 16, 
Capt. Dennis Cavanaugh died. Came to Faribault in 1856. He 
volunteered in Company H, Tenth Minnesota Volunteers; pro- 
moted to second lieutenant, then to captain of Company C. In 
1871 he commenced in the hardware business. Captain Cava- 
naugh served several terms as city alderman and three years 
as county commissioner. 

1910. January 9. George W. Batchelder died in Faribault, 
aged eighty-five years. He was a prominent lawyer of Faribault 
since 1855. January 12, 13, 14, Farmers' Institute held in Fari- 
bault. January 21, death of S. AI. Pye, aged eighty-eight years. 
Came to Rice county in 1864. April 13, census enumerators ap- 
pointed were: Bridgcwater and Dundas village, Rufus J. Htim- 
mell ; Cannon City township, Donald A. McLean; Erin, Thomas 
Foley; Faribault, first ward Henry Dacharme and John Milli- 
gan, second ward Mabel Barrett and Herman Hohenhous, third 
ward Lewis A. Lindenberg, fourth ward John Mullin; Forest, 
Charles Pearsons: Morristown township and village, Lewis M. 
Hollister; Northfield city, first ward Mrs. .Mice Kinsey, second 
ward Mrs. Martha 1.. Page, third ward Hermo M. Felland; 
Xnrthfield township, John Miller; Richland, William A. Cruik- 
shank; Shieldsville, E. J. Leadon ; Walcott, G. M. Pentz; War- 


saw, A. C. Frelin ; Webster, G. C. Gilbertson ; Wells, W. E. Bolt- 
man ; Wesley village, Mathias J. Smisek ; Wheeling, H. A. 
Eckert. April 13, William Dennis Parshall died at Faribault, 
aged sixty-two years. He came to Faribault in 1855. April 24, 
C. W. Sanford died in Faribault, aged seventy-five years. He 
came to East Prairie in 1861. May 15, the curfew ordinance 
enacted in Faribault. May 12, the residence of E. H. Sperry, at 
Faribault, burned, with Mrs. Kellog, Mr. Sperry, two sons and 
one daughter. This year was also marked by the paving of 
several streets in Faribault. 



Birth, Ancestry and Education — Influence in Politics as a Young 
Man — Staff Colonel — Theological Training — Ordination — 
First Rectorship — Call to Chicago — His Work in the Parish 
of the Free Church of the Holy Communion — Consecrated 
Bishop of Minnesota — First Service in His New Diocese — 
First Service in Faribault — Pioneer Conditions — Beginning 
of the Bishop Seabury Mission Schools — Shattuck School — 
Seabury Divinity School — St. Mary's Hall — Work Among 
the Indians — Service on Treaty Commission — "The Great 
Apostle of the Red Men" — Honors Abroad — Work in 
Cuba — Called to the Sandwich Islands — Work in the South- 
ern States — Distinctions in England — Friend of the Black 
Man — Visit to Porto Rico — Growth of the Diocese — 
Domestic Life — Bishop Gilbert — Bishop Edsall — Summary 
of His Life Work — Opinions and Appreciations by Eminent 
Men — Triumphant Closing of a Glorious Career — Memorials. 

Henry Benjamin Whipple. It has been said repeatedly by 
men accustomed to a judicious weighing of words, that "No 
bishop of the Church has ever given more striking evidence of 
the fact that the highest order of the ministry of Christ belongs 
not to a diocese alone, but to the whole Church and to the Com- 
monwealth, than the Right Reverend Henry Benjamin Whipple, 
of Minnesota." 

No brief sketch can adequately describe the rare personality 
and career of the man whose life, in the last half century, has 
entered so largely into the history of the Commonwealth of 
Minnesota, the Republic of the United States and the Church 
throughout the world. 

Henry Benjamin Whipple was born in Adams, X. Y., Feb- 
ruary 15, 1822. The character, however, of the man and the 
preparation For his life of noble service to humanity began sev- 
eral hundred years before tins, in the lives of his ancestors, and 
their descendants, who were among some of the most honorable 
families of our country. Sixteen of his kinsmen were officers 
in the Colonial and Revolutionary wars. The grandmother of 
Sti phen Hopkins, one of the signers of the Declaration of Inde- 




pendence, was a Whipple. His grandfather, Benjamin Whipple, 
was in the Navy of the American Revolution, held in honor for 
the brave and loyal character of its men, among whom was 
Paul Jones. His father, John Hall Whipple, was a prominent 
merchant in New York state, honored and esteemed for his high 
character, integrity and influence as a citizen. His letters to 
his son Henry, during his school days, written in a clear, copper- 
plate hand, in their quaint and terse maxims for moral, social 
and religious principles, were a stimulating influence, and to 
this as well as to the influence of his mother did he directly owe 
his sound equipment for future life. 

In 1820 Mr. John Whipple married Elizabeth, daughter of 
the Hon. Henry Wager, one of the electors of Thomas Jeffer- 
son. She was a woman of rare and noble character, of fine 
mind, and to her sympathetic love and counsel Bishop Whipple 
traces the chief impetus of his life — one of her maxims most 
conspicuously embodied in his whole career having been, "Never 
be afraid to defend the weak and helpless, and never be afraid 
of anything, if God is on your side." 

He was educated in private schools in the state of New York. 
At ten years of age he was placed in the boarding school of 
Professor Avery, in Clinton, N. Y., and next in the school under 
the care of those cultured men, the Rev. Dr. Boyd and the Rev. 
Dr. Covert. While a student at Oberlin he lived with his uncle, 
the Rev. George Whipple, who was professor of mathematics 
at Oberlin College, of which the noble educator, Dr. Charles 
Finney, was president. The environment of his boyhood was 
everything that a Christian home of refinement could make it. 
At that time there was no Episcopal Church in the western part 
of New York, and both parents had connected themselves with 
the Presbyterian Church, although their parents and antecedents 
had been Episcopalian, and they afterward became communi- 
cants of the Episcopal Church. 

Endowed with a brilliant and receptive mind, and with a 
charm of manner and spirit of independence which made him a 
universal favorite with classmates and instructors, the boy pur- 
sued his studies to early manhood. His fearlessness and high 
moral standards, together with a contempt for unfair play and 
injustice of any kind, caused his school days to be marked by 
many amusing incidents, forerunners of more serious battles in 
behalf of the defenseless, in after life. His interest in political 
affairs began when at home for the holidays, when the boy's 
greatest delight was to be allowed to sit at the feet of his father 
and his friends — where the principles and science of government 
were quietly imbibed. 

His student life was suddenly interrupted by a severe illness, 


and to prevent a complete breakdown the consulting physicians 
ordered rest and a change from academic halls to active business 
life. This was a keen disappointment to both father and son, 
but as there was no alternative he accepted an offer from his 
father and for a short time was associated with him in business. 
His father was a staunch supporter of the old Whig party, but 
he was a man of broad mind, never allowing himself to seek to 
interfere with the conscientious convictions of others, and, what- 
ever his private feeling might have been, he magnanimously 
recognized his son's right to his own views as a Democrat of 
the conservative school. The social and political convictions of 
his family led him to take an active part in the state politics of 
New York. Through the influence of Governor Dix he was 
appointed by Governor Marcy, Division Inspector, with the rank 
of Colonel, on the staff of Major-General Gorse. An army offi- 
cer who knew him at the time, commenting upon the gallant 
appearance of the handsome young officer, exclaimed, "What 
a general that man would have been! When the American 
Church won its greatest bishop, the United States Army lost a 
great general !" The brilliant promise which he gave of political 
usefulness and influence was so marked that two of New York's 
famous political leaders, Thurlow Weed and Edwin Croswell, 
remarked when they heard that he had become a candidate for 
holy orders, that "they hoped a good politician had not been 
spoiled to make a poor preacher." He was the companion of 
Hon. John A. Dix when he was canvassing the state of New 
York in 1844. General Dix, Governor Seymour and many of 
the friends of his early manhood became his friends at court with 
the authorities at Washington in Bishop Whipple's later strug- 
gles for the Indians. His last service in the political field was 
as secretary of a state convention. About this time an event 
occurred which changed the direction of his career. Two bril- 
liant business offers had been made him by well known finan- 
ciers, who had watched his keen, far-seeing grasp of situations 
develop and taken note of those gilts which would have unques- 
tionably launched him on a tide of prosperity and placed his 
name among those of the great financiers of the country. These 
offers naturally made their appeal to the young man of action 
and he undoubtedly would have accepted one of them had not 
an attack of illness kept his decision in abeyance. In the weeks 
of enforced seclusion a vision of the nerds of perishing humanity 
took possession <>l" him. recurring again and again, until it finally 
conquered him by its importunity. Every other consideration 
paled in the light of this greal vision. It was his clear percep- 
tion of the highest values of life which led him to decide what 
hi> life work should be. His father and his Rishop, the Rt. Rev. 


Doctor De Lancey, were deeply impressed and gave him their 
unqualified sympathy and encouragement, undoubtedly recog- 
nizing in him the promise of a vitalizing future power in the 

He received his theological training under that eminent 
scholar, the Rev. Dr. W. D. Wilson, of Cornell University. 
On August 26, 1849, ne was ordered deacon by Bishop De Lancey 
in Trinity church, Geneva, N. Y. The following February he 
was ordained priest in Christ church, Sackett's Harbor, and was 
immediately thereafter called to Zion church, Rome, N. Y. In 
the seven years of his rectorship in Rome he built up a large 
parish, erected a beautiful stone church, and won the enduring 
love of his parishioners and fellow citizens. His parish was 
made up of men and women of culture and note, and a large 
number of the very poor drawn in from the suburbs of the city. 
His labors were untiring and his successful experiments in 
making the poor self-helping and independent foreshadowed the 
greater work to come. In referring to this period of his life the 
Bishop said : "It taught me that the poor need our brains more 
than our alms," — the germinal of what is finest in enlightened 
work for the poor. 

During his first rectorship he received calls to Grace church, 
Chicago, St. Paul's church, Milwaukee, and to five or six other 
flourishing city churches, but none of them appealed to him as 
"broader fields of action," until one day in 1856 a thrice-repeated 
call came from Chicago, with a personal visit from Albert E. 
Neely, of the same city, brother of the late Bishop of Maine, 
begging him to go to Chicago and begin work among its great 
multitude of railway men, clerks and artisans. There was no 
church building, the support of the clergyman and church was 
dependent on free-will offerings, but there was an army of wait- 
ing men! Bishop DeLancey said: "You must not go — you will 
starve!" His friends regarded it as madness. His devoted 
parishioners saw nothing so vital as that their beloved rector 
should remain where he was daily seeing the fruits of his untiring 
energy. But it was a Macedonian cry, which could not be 
resisted. His convictions were clear. 

In order to organize a parish the Rev. Dr. Clarkson, of St. 
James church, Chicago, afterward Bishop of Nebraska, lent three 
members of his parish to make up the necessary number and 
the "Free Church of the Holy Communion" was organized and 
the Rev. Henry Benjamin Whipple formally called. The Bishop 
believed, with Dr. Pusey of Oxford, that seats in the Church of 
God should be free to all, and he here initiated the free church 
system in the West. 

He began his work by visiting the roundhouse of the Galena 


Railway and every shop, saloon and factory within the radius of 
his jurisdiction, and then plunged into a course of reading and 
study of railroad and locomotive organization, that he might talk 
intelligently with the hundreds of operatives upon the subjects 
most interesting to them, always leading up to higher themes. 
The men soon learned what his "help at any hour of the day or 
night" meant, and every Sunday the church was crowded to 

His knowledge of men and his power over them was as mar- 
velous as it was lasting. His success soon attracted attention. 
Generals Burnside and McClellan and many men who have 
become part of our country's history were his devoted parish- 
ioners. Men and women of other parishes began to come to the 
inspiring services and here the unerring tact and grace of the 
man revealed itself in preventing a coldness of feeling among 
rectors of other parishes, whose vacant pews bore witness to the 
power of the young rector of "the Church of the Holy Com- 
munion." Many of the most prominent railroad officials became 
communicants of this church. The ministrations of his rector- 
ship in Chicago knew no limit. Day or night he was ready to 
go wherever called. He visited the prisons, standing ready to 
help discharged prisoners to honestly establish themselves in 
wage-earning positions ; and one of the three services every Sun- 
day was given to the large Swedish congregation of the Church 
of St. Ansgarius, which, after the return of the Rev. Dr. Uronius 
to Sweden, became a part of his cure, and was the beginning of 
his interest in the Scandinavians — an augury of his espousal of 
their cause, vears later, in his own diocese. 

At that time the flame of burning strife between High and 
Low Church seemed to have reached its highest point in Chi- 
cago, but the young rector, unmindful of everything except the 
saving of men, went his way. equally beloved by the six 
invincible representatives of the two Church parties, who 
remained his devoted lifelong friends. Meanwhile his congre- 
gation having far outgrown Metropolitan Hall, the "Church of 
the Holy Communion" was erected, which was burned al the 
time of the great Chicago fire. 

The phenomenal success of .Mr. Whipple's work in Chicago 
was one of the chief factors leading to his election to the Epis- 
copate in 1859. He was consecrated first Bishop of Minnesota, 
October 13. [859, in St. James church. Richmond. Va., at the 
session of the General Convention, an event full of significance 
to Minnesota, tin- Church and the Country. 

The striking personalit) of Bishop Whipple was largely, of 
course, a temperamental endowment, but it is easy to see how, 
by the successive events in his life from his boyhood to his ele- 


vation to the Episcopate, those natural endowments were trained 
and developed, which qualified him for the problems awaiting 
him, especially in his broad view of the relations of the Govern- 
ment to the dark races. He was a born orator, graceful and 
impressive in action, and his musical and impassioned voice of 
so fine a timbre that, without an effort, it filled the largest of 
English cathedrals. Discriminating, far-sighted, masterly, and 
so clear and judicial in his presentation of questions that he was 
peculiarly fitted to preside over deliberative bodies. Perhaps his 
most perfect gift was his unfailing spirit of Christian charity, 
combined with the most sensitive consciousnes of any fault, 
however small ; his frequent expressions of humility, born of 
ideals so lofty that their radiance left in his own mind no room 
for personal exaltation. His noble type of face, which at this 
time was of unique beauty, was clear-cut and ecclesiastical, its 
youthful hope and high courage gathering to itself, with increas- 
ing years, the look of holy mastery and power born of the 
sacred fire within — the fire of consecration and love to God and 
humanity. It was a face that riveted instant attention in any 
assembly. Of commanding figure and presence, six feet and 
several inches in height, he was called, on both sides of the 
Atlantic, the most picturesque figure in the Anglican Com- 
munion. The New York "Independent" described Bishop Whip- 
ple, just after his consecration, as "The prelate who looks more 
like what one imagines a bishop should be, — with a figure and 
face an artist would like to paint : being such as one sees in the 
pictures of Fra Beato, or old frescoes in the Campo Santo at 
Pisa, where saints with upturned faces and rapt eyes seem to 
pierce through the clouds of Time right on into the glories of 
Eternity. Such men are not the glory of one part of the Church 
alone, but the common property of the Holy Church Universal, 
of which the Lord is the Living Head." 

This was the type of man who, as the youngest in the House 
of Bishops, came to Minnesota as its first bishop in 1859. To 
one less hopeful and courageous the outlook upon his new field 
at that initial visit would have been appalling. He found a 
vast wilderness stretching over an area of eighty-three thousand 
square miles, with twenty thousand Indians of three tribes at 
war with one another. St. Paul was a small town and Minne- 
apolis a little village. There were not more than fifteen or 
sixteen small churches and chapels (of frame and log) in the 
diocese, four parochial clergy, and perhaps a dozen missionary 
clergy, while the Church was without organization and the 
newly made diocese, such as it was, divided against itself by 
wide difference of opinion. 

Bishop Whipple held his first service in Minnesota at Wa- 


basha, November 10, 1859, and on the 23d of the same month 
made his first visit to the Ojibway Indian country. Indian 
affairs were then at their lowest ebb, without government, pro- 
tection or personal rights of property, and therefore subject to 
every evil influence of unscrupulous white men, whose only 
effort to lighten the darkness of the Indians lay in irrigating their 
land with the deadly fire-water. 

At this first visit the introductory scene, a few miles from 
the agency, showed a dead Indian by the roadside, a number of 
bruised and bleeding men lying in torture from wounds received 
in a drunken fight, a woman scraping bark from a tree to keep 
her children from starving, and a crowd of half-naked wretches 
in rags, who gathered around the Bishop with piteous looks as 
they begged him to give them help. At another point he was 
met by a strange crowd in blankets, paint and feathers, some 
with ears cut to represent ear-drops, others wearing brass clock- 
wheels in their mutilated ears, and all covered with barbaric 
ornaments of beads and metal. "What could you say to such 
people?" someone once asked the Bishop. "Simply the story of 
the Great Spirit, with its practical application," was the answer. 
A mission had been started among the Ojibways a few years 
earlier by the Rev. Dr. Breck, but the Indians had driven him 
out of their country and there was little to show for it. Mis- 
sions had also been started among the Ojibways by other 
religious denominations, but they had all been abandoned. 
Upon his first visit to the Lower Sioux Agency the Bishop was 
met by the Head Chief Wabasha, Wakean Waste, and Taopi, 
with a story of their wrongs which fired his blood, a condition 
speaking for itself in the fact that over forty thousand dollars 
of Indian money "had been expended for schools," and there 
was no school building, no school, and not an Indian child had 
been taught to read: and yet the Sioux had suffered far less 
than the Ojibways. The hatred of the whites for the Indians 
was rampant. What an outlook! It took courage and fear- 
lessness unthinkable in these days of peace for the young 
Bishop, with a vast diocese to administer and build up in every 
direction, to risk antagonizing at the very outset the men to 
whom he must look for help in his work, by putting himself 
on the side of the hated red man. 

On one side he was confronted by the ghastly picture of 
heathenism, degradation, wrong, and outstretched hands plead- 
ing for help: on the other side bitter hatred for the Indian, and 
surprise and anger waxing hot in their veins for the Bishop, who 
boldly called them brothers, and was unflinching in open espousal 
of their cause to the death. The absolute knowledge of the 
wrongs which lay behind the Indian wars and uprisings was the 


slogan which called Bishop Whipple to battle. What a splen- 
did picture rises before one, today, of this Christ-like young 
Bishop standing in the midst of his vast field of labor, with his 
clear eyes set eagerly and hopefully toward the Dawn, unmoved 
by the cries on every side, "Let the Indian alone!" standing 
for fair play and common justice to the wronged and helpless 
race, and caring not if he were slain, could he but bear the seal of 
its enfranchised manhood and womanhood to his Master. It 
was equal to any venture of those great days of the Crusades, 
and the Bishop might well have been a picture of Sir Galahad 
starting on his quest for the Sangreal, as he announced that, 
"God being his helper, it should never be said that the first 
bishop of Minnesota turned his back on the heathen at his 

In these days of better things, when Indian sympathizers are 
the rule, not the exception among enlightened Christian people, 
when conferences are convened and, amid comforts and lux- 
uries, kind Indian friends cheerfully discuss present-day prob- 
lems, how little is realized of what it meant to be a friend of the 
Indian in those lurid days ! Good and righteous as is the work 
which the Indians' friends are now trying to do, it but repre- 
sents the arcadian field of peace after the blood-red soil of 
battle. The Bishop said, in later years, "Our Indian system has 
not been reformed, but there is the difference between daylight 
and midnight in its administration." A long procession of 
Christian red men, whom the Bishop first knew as painted sav- 
ages with scalp-trophies at their belts, has passed on, leaving its 
witness to the fulfilment of his hopes. 

On February 19, 1860, the Bishop held his first service in 
the wooden chapel at Faribault, then a straggling village of 
frame houses, the Episcopal mission consisting of a rude little 
chapel in which a parish school was kept, two small frame 
houses, a little shanty about fourteen by sixteen feet in size, 
where a few young men who were studying for the ministry 
were housed, and a few acres of land which had been donated 
by Alexander Faribault, with a few more acres which had been 
purchased but not paid for. The bluffs were covered by forest, 
with a sprinkling of Indian shanties. On the site of the present 
Shumway chapel the bishop saw a scalp-dance. This was all. 
Certainly not of sufficient significance to weigh in the balance 
in deciding the important question of the Cathedral city. It 
has often been asked why Bishop Whipple chose Faribault for 
the See city and for the founding of schools, as there were no 
material advantages in the way of beginnings to offer. Fron- 
tenac and several other places in the state held out inducements 
to the Bishop for beginning his work, but the healthfulness and 


beauty of the situation of Faribault and its promise as a grow- 
ing center marked it as a fitting place for the establishment of 
schools, and when a delegation of men of different communions 
waited upon him, the week of his first visitation, and in the 
name of the town of Faribault cordially offered him a home, with 
promises to give him their support in his educational work, he 
accepted it as a providential leading, and Faribault became the 
See city of the diocese. 

In the founding of his schools Bishop Whipple derived much 
help and inspiration from his visits to the great schools of Eng- 
land, — Winchester, Rugby, Eton and Harrow, and much val- 
uable advice from his friends, the Most Rev. Dr. Longley, Arch- 
bishop of Canterbury, who had been head master at Harrow, 
and from the Rt. Rev. Dr. Tait, bishop of London, who had 
succeeded Dr. Arnold at Rugby. How few of the students of 
today, who go carelessly in and out of the noble school build- 
ings which now crown the bluff, taking advantages offered 
them as a matter of course, know or realize what they owe to 
Bishop Whipple ! These schools were not planted after the 
manner of so many grand collegiate piles, by munificent gifts 
and rich endowments, but they stand a witness to the prayers, 
the faith, the perseverance, the courage and the unceasing 
energy of the Bishop himself, of whom it was said that his faith 
was of the kind to move mountains. His name should be 
enshrined in the heart of every student who claims as alma 
mater one of these schools. They stand, a double witness to the 
love and confidence in which Bishop Whipple was held by 
friends at home and abroad, who gave him their gifts not 
because they had any great interest in western schools, hut 
because Bishop Whipple had an undying interest in them, and 
they wanted to help him personally. 

The first money for Shattuck school came through the 
Bishop's devoted friend, Dr. Geo. C. Shattuck, of Boston, the 
founder of St. Paul's school, Concord. The Bishop had so 
aroused his interest in his educational plans that he said to him 
one day: "Bishop, I own a tract of land in Illinois. I have 
promised to give eight thousand dollars to St. James' College, 
Maryland, within ten years. 1 will give you this land, and 
as you sell it you can use part of the proceeds to pay my sub- 
scription and keep the rest for your schools." The Bishop's 
business sagacity brought about fortunate sales. Mr. Felix 
Brunot, the Friend of missions, wanted eighty acres of this land 
and told the Bishop he would give him three months to get the 
best offer he could for it, and he would then ^ i \ t- him an addi- 
tional ten dollars for each acre which he could use fur his work. 
An offer for a piece of the land soon came from the owner of 


adjoining land, which held a coal mine. Knowing that the mine 
could only be worked by sinking a shaft, the Bishop asked, "By 
owning my land is it not true that you could tunnel from the 
side and draw out your coal by mules?" "Yes," was the answer. 

"Does not Mr. own a coal mine situated in quite the 

same way on the other side of my land?" "Yes," came the 
reply. "Then," said the Bishop, with a smile, "Haven't I the 
same right to take advantage of the situation of my land that I 
would have if it were a corner lot?" "Of course you have," was 
the frank rejoinder. The result of the whole sale was that the 
Bishop paid over to St. James' College eight thousand dollars, 
and used the remaining thirty thousand for the erection of build- 
ings for his school for boys. Shattuck Hall was named by the 
Bishop for his beloved friend. 

One of the Bishop's Chicago friends paid her tribute to him 
by her gifts of Shumway Hall, the beautiful chapel of Shattuck 
school, and Johnson Hall of Seabury Divinity school, with par- 
tial endowments. Another dear friend, Mr. Junius Morgan, of 
London, gave him the money for Morgan Hall. Still another, 
the daughter of Governor Coles, who prevented Illinois from 
becoming a slave state, gave the beautiful oratory at Seabury 
Divinity school. With the exception of the recently erected 
buildings (since 1906) at Shattuck school, the buildings of the 
three schools and the many valuable gifts which they contain 
were personal tributes of love to Bishop Whipple, made by those 
who held up his hands in the days of laying foundations ; among 
them Mr. Pierpont Morgan, who endowed a professorship at 
Seabury, Mr. Anthony Drexel, Mr. Robert M. Mason and his 
generous daughters, of Boston, and many others. When con- 
gress authorized the detail of army officers to schools of a cer- 
tain grade, Bishop Whipple, believing that military discipline 
created an esprit de corps, and was a dignified way of teaching 
obedience, immediately applied for a detail to Shattuck school. 
The Bishop's friendship with General Sherman, General Grant 
and the authorities at Washington won his requests immediate 
answers, and, owing to this influence, Shattuck school has been 
particularly blessed in its military instructors, — Army officers of 
highest character and ability. 

The magnanimous spirit of Bishop Whipple has been ex- 
hibited more than once in cases like the following: His beloved 
friend, Bishop Whittingham, shortly before his death, told the 
Bishop that he had decided to give him his library (the most 
valuable theological library in the Episcopal Church of America) 
for his Divinity school, saying, "For years I have offered to give 
my library to the Diocese of Maryland if the Diocese would pro- 
vide a fireproof library building. It has not been done and I 


shall give it to you for your school, for I am told that you have 
a library building ready for it." 

The Bishop, feeling that such a treasure should belong to 
Maryland as a memorial to her great Bishop, immediately went 
to the Rev. Dr. Leeds and several laymen of the diocese and 
urged them to make every effort to secure the library building. 
He was finally successful, to the lasting gratitude of Maryland, 
which then became the possessor of the finest diocesan library 
in the United States. 

The Bishop Seabury mission was incorporated in May, i860, 
with a board of trustees, of which the Bishop of the diocese was 
ex officio president. Bishop Whipple laid the cornerstone of 
the cathedral at Faribault on the 16th of July, 1862. This was 
the first Protestant cathedral erected in the United States, the 
Bishop making the cathedral the center of an educational com- 
munity — the schools a part of the organic religious life which it 
represented — his idea of the schools and the parish having a 
common service in the cathedral every Sunday morning, per- 
fectly realizing the true cathedral idea. 

On July 17, 1862, the bishop laid the corner stone of Sea- 
bury Divinity Hall. The difficulties of those early struggles 
were accentuated by the crippling effects of the Civil War, the 
Missions, which wiped out two years of hard labor. In the face 
missions, which wiped out two years of hard labor. In the face 
of these discouragements it required almost superhuman strength 
to go on, and yet, in 1863, Seabury Hall was finished. In 1865 
Shattuck school was organized. In [866 St. Mary's Hall was 
opened, with the scholarly and cultivated Sarah P. Darlington, 
daughter of Dr. Darlington, the celebrated botanist and author, 
of Philadelphia, as principal, and the Rev. Dr. Leonard J. Mills. 
who had been the assistant of Bishop Kerfoot in St. James' 
College, as chaplain. When Bishop Whipple founded this 
school, beginning it in his own home, there was no institution 
of the kind in the Northwest. He took upon himself all the 
heavy and perplexing burdens which such an undertaking 
involve^. V^aiii his personal influence brought generous 
friends to his aid, who by their gifts helped to make this dream 
of his heart possible. This Christian home and institution of 
learning, which now has no peer in tin- country, was the direct 
outgrowth of the constant thought and guidance of its founder, 
growing more and more into the ideal of his vision until the 
present honored and beloved principal, Caroline Wrighl Eells, 
lias placed the cap stone on this object of the Bishop's love. 

The rapidity with which the greal wilderness of Minnesota 
was changed into one of the most prosperous commonwealths 
of the Mississippi valley was a marvel in the history of state- 


building. Through the dense forests and over the pathless 
prairies Bishop Whipple went, and whereve-r a village sprang 
up a mission chapel quickly appeared. Everywhere the Bishop 
was known and welcomed, until he became a part of the life of 
those early settlers, all of whom held him in reverence and love. 
His temporal as well as his spiritual advice was constantly 
sought. It was of Bishop Whipple that the term "Sky-pilot" 
was first used, which has since been appropriated by novelists 
and local poets. Louis Robert, an old French trader, when 
asked if he knew Bishop Whipple, replied, "Yes, he's a sky- 
pilot and always straight." His splendid vigor and zeal in his 
journeys through the wilderness outran the strongest of his 
native guides, who accompanied him through wearisome trails, 
in birch-bark canoes, during the scorching heat of summer and 
the frigid cold and snows of winter, the Bishop carrying his own 
canoe and other impedimenta in making the frequent portages 
from lake to lake. The Indians and pioneers love to tell, today, 
the stories of that consecrated life with its thrilling experiences, 
and more than one pioneer has a tale to relate of when, in the 
wild fury of a Minnesota blizzard, with the thermometer run- 
ning to thirty degrees and more below zero, they have seen 
from their windows a veiled shadow moving across the white 
expanse of lonely prairie, which has finally developed into a pair 
of horses drawing up at the door, and Bishop Whipple, with 
just consciousness enough left to guide his horses, has been 
helped into the house, and before a great log fire has been 
rubbed back into life. 

Intermingled, from the first, with all his other diocesan 
activities, was his great work for the Indians. From the begin- 
ning he saw that if they were to be won by the Gospel and 
their descendants preserved to Christian civilization, the deal- 
ings of Christian people with them must be marked by justice— 
they must be made to feel the obligations as well as the privi- 
leges of citizenship, and that law alone could secure them their 
rights. As early as 1859 and i860, in his letters to the President 
and to the public, he advocated the true national policy of deal- 
ing with them as "individuals rather than tribes, insisting upon 
justice toward them in matters of treaty interpretation, legal 
enactment and administration," and declaring that unless the 
legislature and the administration of Indian affairs were gov- 
erned by principles of truth and equity, there was no hope of 
civilizing them and absorbing them into the great body of 
American citizens. In April, i860, he wrote to President 
Buchanan, opposing treaties with the tribes as nations, and 
showing the evil effects of paying money annuities to tribes, 
suggesting a native police and urging the crying need of law 


upon the reservations, strongly recommending separate home- 
steads, where the families could live by farming. Twenty years 
before Carlisle or Hampton had thought of industrial training, 
Bishop Whipple urged the need of practical industrial teachers 
along the line of agriculture and progression in other directions, 
and indeed every step that has since been taken in civilizing the 
Indians was clearly outlined in his first statesmanlike appeal, 
and from that time on through every administration ran the 
influence which came from the closing lines of his first letter 
to President Buchanan, "I have written frankly, as a Christian 
bishop may write to the chief magistrate of a Christian nation. - ' 

As no Indian policy then existed, save that of encouraging 
fraud and war, it devolved upon Bishop Whipple to formulate 
one and then to plead for it, and to no other man does our 
country owe so great a debt on that score as to him. He stood 
pre-eminently as the most rational, just and enlightened man 
who had any dealing with Indian affairs, and his statesmanlike 
breadth of view was the greatest factor in bringing about Indian 
reform. It was Bishop Whipple who secured justice for the 
Leech Lake Indians in that historical and fraudulent transac- 
tion which would have deprived them of all their pine lands, 
which were sold by the Indian Department through an Indian 
agent. The outraged Indians were on the point of an uprising 
when a message came from the President of the United States to 
the Bishop, asking him if he would go at once and settle the 
difficulty. In the dead of winter he traveled three days through 
snow several feet deep to meet Chief Flatmouth and his war- 
riors, who came in paint and feathers, angry and turbulent. 
After the first outburst of indignation they listened to the 
Bishop, because, as they said, he "had not a forked tongue." 
His influence over them prevented another bloody stain on our 
country's record. The arguments which he used with the Gov- 
ernment, based on the ordinance of 1787, "having the binding 
force of the Constitution, and recognizing the possessory right 
of the Indian to the soil, which could only be extinguished by 
treaty." were convincing and conclusive. 

In 1862 the Indian massacre of which the Bishop had given 
clear warning occurred. To no one did it bring keener anguish 
than to the Bishop, but. while his heart was bleeding for mur- 
dered friends, his passionate sense of justice would not permit 
him to keep silent while the unreasoning hatred of the white 
sufferers fell upon all alike, brooking it" defense of the faithful 
Christian Indians who, at risk of their own lives, saved hun- 
dreds of white women and children. lie was one of the firsl 
to go to the relief of the white sufferers after the massacre, 
sewing up wounds and caring for the wounded and dying, day 


and night. Then, regardless of his great personal danger, — for 
it was like standing at the canon's mouth, — he raised his voice 
against their indiscriminate punishment and extermination. His 
visits to Washington in their defense brought forth storms of 
abuse which grew in bitterness as he fearlessly kept before the 
people and the nation the violations of good faith on the part 
of the Government. His appeals to Congresses and Presidents, 
as he went to Washington several times a year to expose abuses 
in the Indian service and to plead for justice, were always care- 
fully guarded by facts behind which his statements were well 
reined in, bearing his full signature. Long and fearlessly was 
the voice of this advocate of justice heard, until both the whites 
and the Indians were convinced that his statements could not be 
questioned, his never failing sincerity and directness so impress- 
ing the Indians that they gave him the name of "Straight 

In 1868, quite unknown to himself, Congress appropriated 
$45,000 for the Sisseton and Wahpeton Indians at Fort Wads- 
worth and Devil's Lake, to be expended by Bishop Whipple, 
and, on his refusal to accept the position, he was informed by 
the Secretary of the Interior that unless he would accept the 
trust the money would remain in the treasury and the Indians 
be left to starve. He therefore made the expedition, asking his 
friend, Dr. Jared W. Daniels, to accompany him. Through two 
reliable merchants of Philadelphia he purchased a supply of 
well-made goods at cost, and, with a large supply of axes and 
other implements, he started out in the dead of winter, over 
pathless prairies covered with several feet of snow, the resting 
places at night having been holes dug in the snow banks. 
Although a Government position, it carried no salary, and cost 
the Bishop $400 from his own pocket. He found the Indians in 
a starving condition, their emaciated bodies unhidden by their 
rags, and over one hundred of them blind. 

Bishop Whipple was appointed by the different Presidents 
of the United States on many Commissions to make treaties with 
the Indians, and it was the universal verdict that the treaties 
with which Bishop Whipple had to do were sound and accept- 
able to the Indians. In 1876 Bishop Whipple was a member of 
the Commission composed of Colonel Manypenny (who was 
Commissioner of Indian Affairs, under President Pierce), 
Colonel Boone (grandson of Daniel Boone), General Sibley, 
Attorney-General Gaylord, Dr. Asa Daniels, Newton Edmunds 
and Henry C. Bulis, to visit the hostile Sioux on the Missouri 
river. It was another case of broken treaty. Gold had been dis- 
covered in the Black Hills and white men had rushed into the 
country which the Government treaty had promised should be 


the possession of the Sioux forever, had killed the buffalo in wan- 
ton fashion, and had fired the blood of the outraged Indians. 
Their wrongs had smoldered until many of them had become 
turbulent and dangerous, and while two of the principal chiefs 
were ready to listen favorably to a treaty ceding the Black Hills, 
most of them were determined to prevent such a treaty at any 
cost. General McKenzie had urged the Commissioners to take 
with them a guard of soldiers, but Bishop Whipple and Colonel 
Boone objected on the ground of creating distrust and having 
a bad effect upon the Indians. Unarmed, they met three hun- 
dred chiefs and head-men, each carrying a Winchester rifle and 
a belt of cartridges. It was afterward found that they had also 
concealed under their blankets knives, clubs and revolvers. 
More than a thousand mounted Indians were scattered over the 
bluffs and river-bed, near the agency warehouse where the 
council met, many of them having taken part, the previous sum- 
mer, in the Custer massacre. It was a warlike and menacing 
scene. Two companies of the Eleventh United States Infantry, 
under command of Colonel Buell, were stationed there as a pro- 
tection to the agency. During the Council a platoon of United 
States troops stood under arms back of the Commissioners, and 
the agency doors were guarded by soldiers. There was no doubt 
that the Indians had planned to murder the Commissioners, if 
unfavorable to their wishes, and that at a signal the outside 
Indians were to make an attack. 

The Council opened in the usual way. the Indians stating 
their wrongs and making their demands of the Government. 
Bishop Whipple answering for the Government. The two 
friendly chiefs were interrupted by yells of anger and dis- 
approval, and, after two onslaughts upon them with threats to 
kill, Colonel Buell told them that they would be fired upon by 
the troops if the disturbance were repeated. Defiant and at 
white heat, they made a third rush, with wild yells of rage. 
Instantly Colonel Buell gave the order, "Ready— Aim"— and 
was about to command "Fire!" when Bishop Whipple, who had 
been quietly sitting through all the uproar, arose From hi- -eat 
and, stretching out his arms toward the Colonel, exclaimed, in a 
voice which distinctly rang above the tumult. "Don't tire. 
Colonel. For God's sake, don'1 fire!" 

Perfectly calm and without a sign of fear the bishop stood. 
The effect was extraordinary. One of the army officers who 
was present in describing the scene -aid: "It was an anxious 
and awful moment. No one knew what Colonel Buell was 
thinking, hut it was evident that he distrusted his own judg- 
ment against that of Bishop Whipple, who was held in the 
highest esteem and veneration b) the officers of the Army, but 


the command was given, 'Recover Arms' instead of 'Fire' and 
the situation was changed." It was the verdict of all that 
Bishop Whipple's conduct at this time averted an awful calamity, 
for had the troops fired it would have been the signal for a 
general slaughter, as the armed Indians far outnumbered the 

After the outbreak of 1862, owing to the bitter feeling on the 
part of the whites, it was thought wise to remove the Sioux to 
Dakota, many of the Christian Indians whom the Bishop had 
baptized and confirmed among them. The Government had 
confiscated all their lands, amounting to over one million acres, 
and annuities which were $20 per capita, besides the interest 
from funds for civilization. Some of the faithful scouts and 
families of the loyal Indians were taken to Faribault by Bishop 
Whipple at his own risk. The Sioux removed to Dakota were 
for a long time under the care of Bishop Whipple's missionary, 
the Rev. Mr. Hinman. Ten years later the Rev. Dr. Hare, whose 
interest in Indian missions had been aroused by Bishop Whipple 
when on visits to the latter's home in Faribault, was nominated 
to the House of Bishops as Bishop of Niobrara by Bishop Whip- 
ple, who preached the consecration sermon and joined in the 

Believing that the day would come when the Ojibways would 
be removed from their reservation, Bishop Whipple set himself 
to finding out the tract of land best adapted to cultivation and 
the needs of the Indians, and learning that it was the universal 
opinion among the Indians that the country around White 
Earth Lake was most desirable, he was instrumental in securing 
it for them when the time came for a new treaty. He bought 
and paid for the first herds of cattle on the White Earth 

Bishop Whipple's thrilling and courageous report on "The 
Moral and Temporal Condition of the Indians," delivered in 
Cooper Institute, New York city, 1868, by request of Mr. Peter 
Cooper, aroused a deep wave of feeling and produced so profound 
an impression that it led to the organization by President Grant 
of the Indian Peace Commmission the following year. When 
the Bishop was warned to omit the darkest charges, on the score 
of personal danger, he answered, "They are true and the nation 
needs to know them, and so help me God, I will tell them, if I 
am shot the next minute !" 

The Indian Peace Commmission was made up of men dis- 
tinguished for their philanthropic character, who served without 
compensation. From the time of its creation Bishop Whipple's 
help and suggestions were sought upon all occasions, as he was 
considered absolute authority on all matters pertaining to Indian 


affairs. For long years it was necessary for him to agitate the 
subject, rehearsing the facts of the Indians' wrongs and necessi- 
ties until they were burned into the public mind so deeply that 
steps toward their reformation were demanded. 

The Bishop's correspondence in behalf of the Indian cause 
to the press, to public men, and to the successive Presidents of 
the United States, masterful and convincing in the truth and 
breadth of its arguments, would fill volumes. The clear and 
incontestable character of his letters on subjects such as "What 
shall we do with the Indian?" "A True Policy Towards the 
Indians," "The Chivington Massacre," and others, published in 
the appendix of his valuable book, "Lights and Shadows of a 
Long Episcopate," should become familiar to every justice- 
loving citizen of the United States. Bishop Whipple never once 
made an accusation against an Indian Agent without first giving 
him fair warning, and while he fought many battles against 
Indian agents, he fought, quite as insistently, some in their 
behalf. He was often furnished with proofs of fraud by men 
who had no interest whatever in the Indians, but who admired 
his unconquerable courage. A Roman Catholic friend once paid 
$100 for a proof of fraud, for the sake of passing it on to Bishop 
Whipple, whom he believed in as a man. 

President Lincoln, who was one of Bishop Whipple's warmest 
friends and admirers, once characteristically relieved the tension 
of his feelings in speaking of him thus: "Bishop Whipple talked 
with me about the rascality of this Indian business until I felt 
it down to my boots. If we get through this war, and 1 live, 
this Indian system shall be reformed." 

It fell to Bishop Whipple, as first Bishop of Minnesota, to 
devise the Episcopal seal for the Diocese. As the Indian tribes 
were then at war with one another, his unfaltering belief in 
their redemption through Christian training led him to choose 
the design of the Cross with a broken tomahawk and a pipe of 
peace at its foot, surmounted by a mitre and the motto, "Tax 
per sanguinem crucis." 

In 1864 overwork made rest a necessity, As the guest of 
Mr. Robert B. Minturn, Bishop Whipple visited England, where 
his noble personality immediatel) won him lite-long friends 
among the most interesting men and women of the country. 
While in Paris he became deeply interested in the Met all Mis- 
sion and his impassioned addresses to the great congregations 
made up of infidels and every type of humanity representing the 
sinning and sinned against led. in several eases, to results of 
great significance. 

In Spain, where he was received by the Duke of Montpen- 
sier and other distinguished Spaniards, and where he held serv- 


ices in the chapel of the Embassy, at the request of the British 
Minister, he found conditions which enabled him later to take 
an independent stand in dealing with what proved to be, through 
him, the beginning of freedom of worship in the Spanish pro- 
tectorate of Cuba. In the Holy Land, in Constantinople, in 
Egypt and wherever he went he was honored in unusual ways. 
He was received most cordially by the Archbishop of the Greek 
Church and the Patriarch of the Armenian Church, participating 
in some of the interesting functions of these Eastern Churches. 

In 1871 Bishop Whipple held the first Protestant service in 
Cuba. The Foreign Committee of the Board of Missions had 
asked him to visit the Mission at Haiti, but, upon arriving in 
New York to find that the steamer had sailed before her adver- 
tised date, he took the one chance of getting to Haiti by going at 
once to Havana, but there he found that there was no steamer 
bound for his desired point. Feeling that the interruption to 
his plan might be an interposition of Providence, he began an 
investigation of the moral and religious conditions of the thou- 
sands of foreigners scattered over the island of Cuba, and the 
appalling revelation showed that without Church or moral stimu- 
lus they had degenerated into every form of immorality — bull- 
fights, cock-fights and lotteries forming their chief interest. 
Many had died without religious rites, having been buried in 
trenches like cattle. The wife of the Consul-General of the 
United States, a granddaughter of Bishop White, of Pennsyl- 
vania, had recently died without the ministrations of religion. 
The Bishop's soul was aroused. He asked the United States 
Consul if he might hold a service at the Consulate, but so strained 
were the relations between Spain and the United States that the 
Consul thought it unwise, and suggested that permission should 
be asked of the Captain-General of Cuba. The Bishop's diplo- 
macy revealed itself in his quick response: "Certainly not. The 
Spanish Constitution gives permission to foreigners domiciled in 
Spain or her colonies to worship God according to their accus- 
tomed forms of faith. I shall act under this authority, and if 
anyone dares to meddle with me I think that my country will 
protect me." The Bishop, accordingly, held service on board the 
United States man-of-war "Swatara," then anchored in the har- 
bor, on the nth of March, 1871, the congregation flocking out 
to the ship in boats. During the week he held a service in the 
rooms of the British Consul-General, the Hon. John Dunlop, and 
the same week, at the request of the Consul-General of Ger- 
many, the Hon. Louis Will, he solemnized the marriage of two 
German subjects, at the German Consulate, with the stipulation 
that he should be allowed to officiate as an act of international 
courtesy without the customary fee. This led to a return of 


courtesy, and, by request of the Consul-General of Germany, he 
held service the following Sunday, March 18, at the German 
Consulate, where there was a large congregation, the grand 
service having been made more impressive by a special service 
of thanskiving for the restoration of peace between Germany and 
France. This was the first public service held in Cuba, and was 
the beginning of the work which opened Cuba to freedom of 

A large resident population of English, Germans and Ameri- 
cans were most anxious for the establishment of Church serv- 
ices, among them some prominent Roman Catholics, who, keenly 
feeling the low moral ebb in the island, promised to give sub- 
stantial support to any clergyman the Bishop might send who 
would stand as an example of what a priest should be, declaring 
that much as they honored the priests of their Communion in the 
United States, they felt the need of a cleansing and moral 
influence in the island. 

The Consuls-General of Great Britain, Prussia, Austria and 
the United States, and prominent business men pledged their 
co-operation, and, with characteristic zeal, the Bishop worked 
during his stay, securing over three thousand dollars for the 
support of a resident clergyman. Upon his return to the United 
States he set himself to the task of arousing the Church to the 
vital need of the situation. The Church was unwilling to take 
any responsibility in establishing a mission in Cuba, but. in 
spite of lukewarmness and opposition, the Bishop continued his 
eloquent pleas, declaring that it could in nowise be regarded as 
an "intrusion into the jurisdiction of another historical church," 
as no effort to proselyte would be considered. It was a time 
of intense feeling, but the Bishop persevered until the House of 
Bishops finally awoke and consented to send a resident mission- 
ary to the foreign population of the island, appointing Bishop 
Whipple and Bishop Whittingham to the oversight of the work. 

In November, 1871, the Rev. Edward Kennev. under Bishop 
Whipple's direction, and glowing with the hitter's faith and 
zeal, sailed for Havana. At the Bishop's visit to Cuba in 1875, 
witli the Iiishop of Ontario, he held the firsl public confirmation 
of the Episcopal church in Cuba, having had private confirma- 
tion on his first visit. The Rev. Edward Kennev proved that 
he had been wisely chosen. He had one of the largest hospi- 
tals under his spiritual care, had made over four thousand visits 
to the sick and dying and had carried on his labors in so broad 
a spirit ot Christian love that, at the Bishop's visit, the Consuls- 
General of the German empire. Great Britain and America, with 
several prominenl residents, gladly consented to act as a Com- 


mittee to receive and expend contributions, feeling that the val- 
uable work should be extended to all parts of the island. 

The altar in the cathedral at Havana will Stand as a memorial 
of Bishop Whipple, simply as a sign of that memorial greater 
than sculptored marble, which may be seen today in the im- 
proved condition of Cuba's commonweal. 

In 1871 an English bishopric was offered to Bishop Whipple 
by the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Bishop of Winchester, 
sanctioned by the King and Synod of the Sandwich Islands. 
Strong and insistent pressure was brought to bear to persuade 
the Bishop that the grave needs and responsibilities of the situ- 
ation were such that duty seemed involved. The conditions in 
the islands were beset with delicate and difficult problems, and 
required a man to head the work of large grasp, of broad poli- 
cies, of sound and persuasive temper and consecration to the 
highest ideals. Bishop Whipple was the man who loomed up 
in the mind of the English Church as the solution to the prob- 
lem, an opinion concurred in by many of the American bishops, 
although it was tempered, in the American House of Bishops, 
by considerations connected with his unique and great work at 
home. At this time the rigidity of Minnesota winters, with his 
constant exposure, was beginning to endanger the Bishop's 
health, and the prospect of prolonged work in a mild climate 
entered into consideration. The situation was problematic and 
finally the Bishop sought advice of the members of the House 
of Bishops, who, representing its theological status, also knew 
him intimately and understood the situation in Minnesota and 
the Sandwich Islands. 

He found opinion equally divided, some fearing that it might 
involve suffraganship to Canterbury, besides taking the Bishop 
from the diocese which he had so nobly founded, others urging 
that there were so many reasons for regarding either as a great 
work for which the Bishop was pre-eminently fitted, that the 
indications of a Providential leading were strikingly and equally 
clear. Some were dazzled by the importance of the results to 
be won socially and ecclesiastically with a leader like Bishop 
Whipple fitted to successfully cope with the entanglements and 
problems, characterized by Bishop John Williams of Connecti- 
cut as "being in such a snarl that what, between King Synod and 
bishops in England, Solomon himself could hardly hope to set 
things straight." Some urged that it would be a glorious dem- 
onstration of Anglican friendship, so prolific of far-reaching 
issues that there seemed but one view to take of it. Others 
took the stand that the one ground for decision should be the 
Bishop's health, and that the duty of the Church lay in the desire 
and aim for the prolongation of his life in whichever field the 


promise was most hopeful of lengthened official service. Indeed 
so conflicting was the advice offered that the Bishop finally 
decided to leave the matter of health to a higher Power, believ- 
ing that his first duty was to his schools, his Indians and his 
diocese as long as he lived. 

In 1873 Bishop Whipple was elected one of the trustees of 
the great Peabody Fund for educational work in the South. 
When this fund was created there was not a public school in the 
South. The board of trustees was and always remained one of 
the most distinguished and brilliant bodies of men ever con- 
vened in America. The Hon. Robt. C. Winthrop, who succeeded 
Henry Clay as Speaker of the House of Representatives, and 
Daniel Webster in the United States Senate, was its first presi- 
dent, having been succeeded by the Hon. William M. Evarts, 
with Bishop Whipple and Chief Justice Fuller of the United 
States Supreme Court as its two vice-presidents. In 1875, at one 
of the meetings, the Bishop, familiar with the conditions of the 
South and the problems confronting it, and knowing that the 
poor children of the Southern states would be dependent upon 
common schools for their education, and that trained teachers 
would be needed, offered the resolution "That the Executive 
Committee be requested to take into consideration the propriety 
of establishing scholarships for the education of teachers in a 
limited number of schools and colleges in the more destitute 
parts of the South." The resolution, which was seconded by 
General Taylor (son of President Zachary Taylor), was unani- 
mously adopted and led to the founding of the Peabody Normal 
College in Nashville, Tenn. 

In 1888, by request of the Archbishop of Canterbury, Bishop 
Whipple preached the opening sermon of the Lambeth Confer- 
ence, at Lambeth Palace, London, of which one of the greatest 
prelates <>f England said: "The name of Bishop Whipple has 
been held in the highest honor, for long years, throughout the 
Anglican Communion, and 1 shall never forget his sermon to the 
Lambeth Conference on 'The Church of the Reconciliation,' 
which has become a well-known note of our communion ever 
since." In 1889 he preached the triennial sermon in St. George's 
church, New York city, on the centenary of the organization of 
the American branch of the Church. 

In 1890 much needed resl caused the Bishop to succumb to 
the generous wishes of a dear friend, and his winter was spent 
on the Continent, in England and in Egypt. He preached upon 
many memorable occasions during the winter, having been one 
of the consecrators of the present Most Reverend Archbishop 
of Canterbury when he was made Bishop of Rochester, and also 
of the Rt. Rev. Dr. Creighton, Bishop of London. He had a 


private interview with Victoria, Queen of England, who was 
deeply impressed by the Bishop's personality, requesting a por- 
trait of himself and presenting him with her own portrait, 
accompanied by a beautifully bound and inscribed copy of her 
book, "Journeys in the Highlands." He preached in the Royal 
Chapel at Windsor and delivered the opening sermon of a course 
in Westminster Abbey, where he had many times been the 
Special Preacher, as he had been in nearly all the English 
cathedrals, and before the Universities of Oxford, Cambridge 
and Durham, from which he had received the honorary degrees 
of D. D. and LL. D. He received the degree of D. D. from 
Hobart College. 

On June 3d, 1897, by a request of the preceding year, he 
preached in Salisbury cathedral at the great service in com- 
memoration of the thirteen hundredth anniversary of the bap- 
tism of King Ethelbert, the first Christian Saxon king, with a 
congregation of seven thousand persons, a procession of seven 
hundred bishops and vested clergy and fourteen hundred chor- 
isters. The same year he preached one of the special sermons 
before Oxford and the "Ramsden Sermon" before Cambridge, 
which, by request of the S. P. G., was published for circulation. 
He also preached the opening sermon after the restoration of the 
wonderful old Cathedral-Church of St. Saviour's, London, 
vibrant with history, and in the Ladye chapel, of which Bishop 
Gardner held court and condemned to be burned at the stake the 
Bishop of St. David's, Bishop Farrar of Worcester, John Rogers 
and five priests. It was said by many of the one hundred and 
fifty bishops present at this service that Bishop Whipple seemed 
to have reached the zenith of impassioned outpouring of spiritual 
truths, striking the keynote of everything most needed in the 
Christianization of the world. In August, 1897, Bishop Whipple 
preached the Tennyson memorial sermon in the Poets' parish 
church at Freshwater, Isle of Wight, at the time of the unveil- 
ing, by the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Dean of West- 
minster, of the memorial erected by the poet's friends in America 
and England — the Iona cross, which stands a beacon for sailors 
on the summit of the downs. 

In 1899 he was again invited to preach upon special occasions 
in England. He delivered the address at the centenary of the 
Church Missionary Society of England, as representative of the 
American church, a memorable occasion, on which archbishops, 
bishops, statesmen, ex-governors of foreign colonies and dele- 
gates of distinction from all over the world were present. When 
Bishop Whipple arose to give his address the great audience of 
six thousand men stood up, and the prolonged and deafening 
cheers and shouts of "Minnesota, Minnesota!" were a token of 


the love and honor in which Bishop Whipple was everywhere 
held. From the academic shades of old Cambridge came the 
following description of him upon this occasion : "The Bishop of 
Minnesota, tall, graceful, with the figure of a Sirdar and the face 
of a saint, rose to speak. With voice strong and powerful, 
having lost nothing of its music and thrilling with earnestness 
coming straight from the soul, this typical spiritual Chief of the 
West, this silver pine of Minnesota, began his noble and 
impressive address, amid a storm of applause. 

The last service of a Lambeth Conference, in which Bishop 
Whipple participated, was at the closing service in St. Paul's 
cathedral, London, when he, with the Archbishops of Canter- 
bury and York, and the Bishop of London were the celebrants. 
In 1895 the General Convention of the Episcopal Church, 
meeting for the first time west of the Mississippi river, was held 
in Minnesota, and was an occasion not to be forgotten in the 
state. It was a widespread tribute of honor and appreciation, 
regardless of creed, to the work done by the great first Bishop 
of Minnesota in the See city and in the diocese under his noble 
leadership. A more hospitable reception was never given to any 
General Convention than to this one by Churchmen and their fel- 
low-Christians of Minnesota, Archbishop Ireland and other 
distinguished clergy of the Roman Catholic church joining in 
the welcome to the Bishop's guests. A beautiful silver loving 
cup was presented to the Bishop at this time by the House of 
Bishops. One of the problems of American Christianity which 
has been so wisely worked out in Minnesota in connection with 
the large Scandinavian population was of profound interest to 
the Convention, as it showed the extent to which the diocese 
has incorporated with itself the members of the Swedish National 
Church, as it was in the Colonial days of Delaware and Penn- 
sylvania. Bishop Whipple's work among the Scandinavians 
during his rectorship in Chicago had borne fruit, and in his Con- 
vention and other addresses, as early as [868 — twenty years 
before the matter was legislated upon by the Lambeth Confer- 
ence — Bishop Whipple declared his conviction with clearly 
stated reasons, that the standards of doctrine of the Scandinavian 
Church were so closely allied to those of the Anglican Church 
that her children should be accepted as members of a sister 
Church, lie then formulated the steps which crystallized suc- 
cessfully in his own diocese after the Lambeth Conference of 
1SS5 had adopted the recommendations of the Report, which was 
made at the time by a committee composed of some of the 
soundest theologians among the bishops of the Anglican Church, 
who took the same stand which Bishop Whipple had taken 
twenty years before. It was declared that the Swedish Church 


"should be most gladly welcomed with a view to the ultimate 
establishment of permanent intercommunion on sound principles 
of ecclesiastical polity." This was a subject very close to the 
Bishop's heart and he so impressed his convictions upon his 
assistant, Bishop Gilbert, that the latter was ready to co-operate 
with him when the time came for the decisive step to be 
taken. Bishop Whipple acted under the authority of the Lam- 
beth conference of 1888 and in 1898 the General Convention 
passed a canon ratifying the action of the Diocese of Minnesota 
in allowing Swedish congregations to use the liturgy of the 
National Church of Sweden. 

With that wonderful prescience which so signally distin- 
guished Bishop Whipple it seemed to be his gift to foresee the 
end from the beginning. Fifteen years before it was deemed 
necessary to appoint a bishop for Alaska, Bishop Whipple vis- 
ited Alaska and, finding conditions which aroused his pity and 
interest, his voice was heard at every subsequent General Con- 
vention pleading for the establishment of a missionary jurisdic- 
tion in that land of suffering humanity, until finally it came in 
the election of the heroic Bishop Rowe. 

In the winter of 1900 Bishop Whipple made a visit to Porto 
Rico, by official request, making an investigation of the social 
and religious status of the island, — an undertaking in which 
he was heartily assisted by General Davis, Military Governor 
of Porto Rico, who gave him every facility for learning true 
conditions. The Bishop's concise and exhaustive report was wel- 
comed by thousands of Americans, eager to know facts concern- 
ing their new possession, among them President McKinley, 
who had written the Bishop asking that the report might be sent 
to him as soon as completed. Bishop Whipple was the first 
American bishop to set foot in Porto Rico, and was everywhere 
enthusiastically welcomed. He visited all parts of the island, by 
horses or steamer, delivering sermons and addresses in theaters, 
private houses and the barracks of the United States soldiers. 
He administered the rite of confirmation, and, upon Washing- 
ton's birthday, at their first patriotic meeting, delivered an 
inspiring speech on "Our Country" in the San Carlos theater of 
San Juan to an audience of several thousand persons. So deplor- 
able a condition of illiteracy, poverty and demoralization was 
revealed that the Bishop returned to the United States to again 
plead for a down-trodden people. His insistent appeals were 
finally rewarded when the House of Bishops appointed the Rt. 
Rev. Dr. Van Buren as Bishop of Porto Rico. 

Of the many proofs of Bishop Whipple's apostolic character 
none shine forth more luminously than his lifelong passion of 
love and hope for the dark races and for suffering humanity 


generally. In the center of darkest Africa a great bell calls the 
benighted natives to a house of prayer and learning, which bears 
the inscription, "In love and reverence for Bishop Whipple, 
Friend of the Black Man." In the distant Philippines stands a 
noble altar-piece made by the famous carver of Ober-Ammergau, 
in the niches of which stand figures of a few men who, in the 
world's history, have stood for great truths, among them Bishop 
Whipple, the exponent of love and justice to all men. 

In the later years of his life the severity of Minnesota win- 
ters made it necessary for the Bishop to spend part of the season 
in a milder climate. The burden of his diocese went with him. 
but, notwithstanding his enormous correspondence, which took 
up a large part of every day, he still found time to erect a church 
in Florida, of which he always spoke as "The Church of the 
Reconciliation," where he held regular services, instructing the 
colored people in their own church Sunday afternoons. 

In 1886 the growth of his diocese made it necessary for the 
Bishop to ask for an assistant. Notwithstanding the difficulties 
and hardships of a new country, with everything to contend 
against and with everything to plan and build, the bishop had 
brought his diocese to a splendid pre-eminence. The handful of 
feeble missions and parishes which he had found worshiping in 
small frame and log churches had multiplied to scores of flourish- 
ing parishes, and a large number of rectories had been built. 
Church hospitals in St. Paul, Minneapolis, Duluth and White 
Earth had been built, and his schools had become the honor and 
pride of the Northwest. The State of Minnesota had grown into 
one of the great commonwealths of our country. The prairies 
and forests where Bishop Whipple had labored and traveled by 
horse, on foot, by canoe and by stage were lined with railroads, 
Pullman cars running to within a short distance of Indian res- 
ervations, where the Indians were living at peace, in houses of 
their own. 

At this auspicious time the Rev. Mahlon N. Gilbert was 
elected Assistant Bishop. The magnanimous and wise methods 
of the great-hearted Bishop, and the confidence and admiration 
of his assistant, made the relation one of unusual harmony, 
which continued until Bishop Gilbert's death, in 1900. Then 
again Bishop Whipple had the care of the diocese upon him, 
until, in 1901, he asked for a coadjutor. The Kt. Rev. Dr. 
Edsall, Missionary Bishop of North Dakota, was elected, an 
event which caused the Bishop to exclaim, "Laus Deo!" Until 
his death. Bishop Whipple never ceased to be the Great Diocesan, 
guiding, working, and literally "dying in harness." 

Bishop Whipple was twice married; first to Cornelia, daugh- 
ter of Benjamin and Sarah (Ward) Wright, of New York state, 


by the Rev. Mr. Fisk, of Trinity church, Watertown, N. Y. Mrs. 
Whipple was of the family of Ward and Pell, of New York 
state. She was deeply interested in the early work in Faribault, 
particularly in the beginning of St. Mary's Hall. She entered 
into rest in the year 1890. 

In 1896 Bishop Whipple was married to Evangeline, only 
daughter of Francis and Jane Van Poelien Marrs, of Massachu- 
setts, by the Rt. Rev. Henry C. Potter and the Rev. Dr. Greer, 
in the Church of St. Bartholomew, New York city. Mrs. Whip- 
ple is a New Englander, descended from a distinguished Eng- 
lish and Dutch ancestry. Mrs. Whipple now owns and lives 
in the home which has so long been identified with the diocese 
of Minnesota, as its Bishop's residence, and is closely associated 
with the Bishop's work. Four children of the Bishop are liv- 
ing: Mrs. Charles A. Farnum, of Philadelphia, Mrs. H. A. 
Scandrett, of Faribault, Mrs. F. R. Jackson, of Cleveland, and 
Brigadier-General Charles H. Whipple, Paymaster-General of 
the United States Army, a son, and a beloved daughter, Mrs. 
Cornelia Rose, having died in 1878 and 1884. 

Bishop Whipple was Chaplain-General of the Societies of the 
Sons of the Revolution and of the Colonial Wars of the United 
States, was a member of the Indian Board of Commissioners 
and of other important societies in England and America. 
In 1861, he was chosen chaplain of the First Regiment Minne- 
sota Volunteers, but although obliged to decline this position, 
he was a frequent visitor at the camps, where he was loved and 
revered by the officers and soldiers. He actively promoted the 
labors, during the Civil War, of the Sanitary Commission in be- 
half of the sick and wounded, afterwards aiding in many ways 
in the relief of the widows and children of those killed. 

In his Churchmanship, in his dealing with the Indian ques- 
tion, in the management of his great educational work, in the 
rational and far-sighted conduct of subtle and critical situations 
in his diocese, his statesmanship has been conspicuous, his tact- 
ful and persuasive influence bringing together men of oppo- 
site schools of theological thought in a remarkable way. To 
these qualities the diocese of Minnesota owes the noble position 
she holds in the Church. The Bishop was once seen standing 
at his full, benignant height, with his right arm drawn tightly 
around one of the most extreme ritualists of the day, his left 
arm as closely encircling the extremest of Low Churchmen. 
Looking down upon them with radiant face, he exclaimed : 
"Here are two of the best men in the whole Church. I don't know 
which one I love the more, and they are just beginning to find 
out how much they love each other!" They were held so 
closely that they could do nothing but smile in each other's 


faces, which they had never done before, but the smile cemented 
an enduring friendship. 

Technically speaking, the Bishop was a High Churchman of 
the Conservative School, but it has often been said that "Bishop 
Whipple was too large for any one Church — he belonged to the 
whole world." He was rightly called "The Spiritual Father of a 
Great Commonwealth." He was a loyal and tender father to 
his clergy and counted nothing hard if he could serve anyone in 

The Minnesotans, familiar with the story of the early days 
of the state, know that the solution of some of its most subtle 
problems confronting it in its chaotic condition, when its wilder- 
ness was filled with red men, was due to this indomitable leader 
of men, who went up and down its vast stretches, month in and 
month out. He was alike welcomed in town, hamlet, and lum- 
ber camp, where his wise and virile counsel, his profound spirit- 
ual teaching applied to the practical needs of right state build- 
ing, inspired his listeners with lofty ideals of citizenship, mak- 
ing them feel their personal obligation as a part of a great na- 
tion. His life from first to last was identified with the devel- 
opment of the best interests of the state, and to his pure char- 
acter, energy, self-sacrifice and zealous Christian teaching the 
state of Minnesota owes an immeasurable debt. 

A brief biographical sketch can in no way tell the story of 
Bishop Whipple's life and personality — a personality which drew 
around him a host of men and women, whose names stand for 
the best and greatest in the English-speaking world of the last 
half century, with whom he had an intimate friendship and 
correspondence. He was not only honored and revered, but 
was loved with the tenderness which made the rugged old 
warrior, General Sherman, say to his adjutant, as they sud- 
denly confronted the Bishop in an hotel lobby, "Here is our In- 
dian Bishop. We have the Indians between us, and we'll 
exterminate them." "General," responded the Bishop, "why 
don't you say you thank God that there is a bishop to defend 
these poor red men?" The answer came with tears in tin- 
veteran lighter's eyes, as he threw hi-- arm about the Bi 
"Bishop, / do, and I love yon for it!" 

Bishop Whipple was never taken unawares. At a moment's 
notice, his arguments were ready for the occasion, concise, 
cleancul and convincing, lie was a fascinating conversational- 
ist, absolutely free from self-consciousness, with a keen -nisi' 
of humor, line wit and a mosl charming freshness and sim- 
plicity. His wide knowledge of nun ami events peculiarly lil- 
ted him For an) position in life, and made him the delight of 
men like Lord Houghton, Lord Salisbury, Ranke the historian, 


the Duke of Argyle, Sir Henry Holland and others of like mind 
and gifts, with whom he came into intimate relations. He was 
particularly fitted by temperament and endowment to thor- 
oughly enjoy the intellectual stimulus of men who have made 
the glory of England's and America's best social life in the last 
fifty years. The rare blending of geniality, magnanimity, and 
nobility of nature, drew men irresistibly to him. 

It is the voice of a man's contemporaries which gives, per- 
haps, the most adequate estimate of the place he has filled in 
the hearts of his fellow men. The coming generation, to whom 
Bishop Whipple will be but a hallowed name, must receive its 
impression of the rare character of the man by the effect which 
it produced upon contemporary master-minds. In the broadest 
sense, he was a great man — great in character, in influence 
and in achievement. He won men by his broad wisdom, his 
persuasive powers, his rare magnetism, his high courage, and 
his noble citizenship. His name will stand as one of the greatest 
Christian patriots and bishops America has produced. 

Dr. Lyman Abbott spoke truly when he said, "Bishop Whip- 
ple is a genuine statesman in his grasp of fundamental princi- 
ples and their application to special circumstances. He stood 
for the most practical methods of dealing with present day con- 
ditions, and for applied Christianity as the molding force of 
civilization. He was a soldier in his courage and resolute devo- 
tion to duty. He had nothing less than genius for bringing 
things to pass. Substantially all the conclusions which modern 
statesmanship has reached, respecting the true solution of the 
Indian problem, were directly formulated by Bishop Whipple 
over forty years ago." One of America's best known thinkers 
and writers said: "America has never bred a higher type of 
man than Bishop Whipple of Minnesota. He won not only the 
esteem, but the personal affection of almost every great per- 
sonality in the English-speaking world of the last half cen- 
tury." A distinguished prelate of England said: "I so well 
remember the Bishop of Minnesota as a comparatively young 
man at the college in Oxford, of which I was a Fellow, and 
where he was held in high honor, and was a great favorite for 
that mixture of wisdom, piety and charming humor which so 
greatly distinguished him. His name will be remembered by 
generations to come." 

Another of England's great bishops said: "In the Bishop 
of Minnesota we bishops felt that we had in very truth a father 
in God. His splendid life has left its inspiration on the whole 
Church, and his valiant work, its influence upon his country and 
ours, where he was enthroned in the hearts of the people." 

The Hon. Andrew D. White, American Minister to Russia, 


said, when he was President of Cornell University : "Take the 
sermons we had last Sunday, the two discourses preached by 
the great apostle to the Indians, discourses not only noble in 
themselves but preached in such a way that you felt that behind 
the sermon there stood a man — a very great man — a man who 
has made his mark on the history of his country ; a man to whose 
honor statues will be erected ; a man who has stood between the 
helpless Indian and the wild greed of the whole Northwest; 
a man who has fought scoundrelism and lust and avarice in low 
places and in high ; who has pursued it to the national capital 
and driven it hence ; who has taken hold of governors of states, 
and has told them, 'If you don't cut loose from these things, I 
will denounce you to the world.' And he has done it. It was 
something to even sit in the presence of such a man. And his 
closing words in the afternoon regarding the future of the coun- 
try and your own part in it — who can forget them? Certainly 
none of us ever will." 

The king of England said : "Bishop, it is an honor to shake 
hands with you. Your name is a household word all over Eng- 
land, where it is honored and beloved." An old colored man 
in the South said: "When our Bishop leaves us, it seems like 
the birds had stopped singing." The Duke of Argyle said: "If 
all churchmen were like the Bishop of Minnesota, we should 
all be Episcopalians." The great Bishop of Durham, Dr. West- 
cott, said: "In my whole life I have never been brought so 
near to the unseen world as when in the presence of the saintly 
Bishop of Minnesota." Gladstone said: "He is spiritually and 
intellectually great." The Rt. Rev. William Croswell Doane 
said : "All the years of his untiring and devoted work have only 
served to emphasize what I have always believed, that never 
in any Episcopal election in the American church has the finger 
of God been more plainly seen, or the voice of God more plainly 
heard than in the choice that Minnesota made for its first 
bishop." Hon. Robert C. Winthrop said: "My beloved friend. 
Bishop Whipple, is one of the greatest bishops that has ever 
graced the Anglican communion." The full-blooded Indian 
said: "Our Bishop was all love! He taught us from the begin 
ning love, love, love! My children, love the Great Spirit: love 
one another; love all other tribes! He was the greatest friend 
the Indians ever had." It would take volumes to portray the 
life of Bishop Whipple as it lived in the hearts of men through- 
out the broad land and over the seas. A man less great would 
have been more or less affected by the honors that were laid at 
his feet, but he was ever the same, whether environed by the 
traditions of ancient University or stately Church: whether in 
log cabin or Indian tipi; whether mingling with the greatest 


statesmen and scholars of his clay or in audience with kings and 
queens, his charming native simplicity remained untouched; 
everywhere and always he was the straightforward, dignified 
man of God, with the heart of that child to which the kingdom 
of heaven is likened. As the years go on, the great qualities of 
this man, though recognized from the beginning, will gather 
more and more lustre, and the world will realize how great a 
share he added to the noblest part of the history of the twentieth 

Just before the General Convention of the Episcopal church, 
which met in California in 1901, in the midst of his prepara- 
tions as acting presiding bishop of the Convention, he was sud- 
denly prostrated by an attack of pneumonia, an unsuspected 
heart trouble revealing itself in complication. Two weeks later, 
on the morning of the sixteenth of September, the summons 
came. The country was in mourning over the tragic death of 
President McKinley, but this did not lessen the effect of the 
message which quickly rang through two continents of the fallen 
prince in Israel. The effect was paralyzing, so impossible did it 
seem to grasp the thought that this great maker of history would 
no more be seen — that his voice would no longer be heard in 
passionate appeals for justice and right. From around the world 
came tributes of honor, bearing witness to the triumphant life 
of the great apostle. 

By order of the mayor of the See City, the public buildings 
were draped in mourning, and all places of business were closed 
during the time of the funeral. The majestic figure lay in the 
vestments of his office, in the private oratory of the Bishop's 
house, suggesting but a momentary closing of the eyes — the 
noble face lighted by a grand expression of triumph ; the Indians, 
who had traveled long distances to look once more on the 
beloved face, came silently in, and as they looked, their sobs 
were hushed and in awe-struck voices they whispered, "He 
lives. In a minute he will speak to his red children." Later the 
body lay in state in the Cathedral, guarded by the Vestry, the 
active pallbearers, and the senior Presbyter of the Diocese hold- 
ing the Bishop's staff, a surging mass of people passing through 
the Cathedral, which was triumphal in purple and white and 
heavy wreaths of oak. Among the pallbearers were two clergy- 
men belonging to the Sioux and Ojibway tribes, which had been 
at war with each other when the Bishop first knew them. The 
long procession of robed and vested bishops and priests, with 
laymen of Cathedral and Diocesan committees, and clergymen 
of other denominations, added to the impressive scene as it 
passed the line of Shattuck cadets drawn up in order in front 
of the Cathedral. After the music of the Cathedral choir, while 


the body was being lowered to its lasting resting place beneath 
the Altar of the Cathedral, a favorite hymn of the Bishop was 
touchingly sung, in their own tongue, by the Sioux Indians from 
the Birch Coulie Mission. Later in the service, as the procession 
moved down the aisle, there was a pause, while the Ojibways 
from the Red Lake, Leech Lake and White Earth reservations 
sang in their musical language another favorite hymn, after 
which the people within and the vast concourse without joined 
in the grand old hymn, "For All the Saints Who From Their 
Labors Rest." 

The tower of the Cathedral, left for many years unfinished, 
owing to lack of funds, was in process of completion before the 
bishop's death, as a tribute of love and honor to him, under the 
direction of the Rev. Dr. Charles Lewis Slattery, Dean of the 
Cathedral. It was afterward finished as a memorial of love, by 
the Bishop's friends in Europe and America, at which time the 
beautiful chime of bells was placed in the tow r er as a memorial 
by one who loved him. And, today, as the "Bishop's Tower" 
stands guard over the sacred mausoleum, men go to and fro, 
and in reverent silence stand and read the inscription cut into 
the stone of its walls : 

"This tower is the thanksgiving of many people for Henry 
Benjamin Whipple, first Bishop of Minnesota, and is the symbol 
before men of the supreme value of a righteous man." 

(Note — Two steel engravings of the Bishop appear in this 
work. One photograph was taken in 1864, in the early days of 
his Episcopate, while the other was taken after the years had 
crowned his life with the fruition of his hopes.) 









Bishop Whipple's Influence — Rev. J. Lloyd Breck, Rev. Solon 
W. Manney, Rev. E. Steele Peake and Hon. R. A. Mott— Site 
Selected for Schools — Associate Mission — St. Columba Mis- 
sion — Plans for Educational Work — Beginning of the Work 
— Parish of the Good Shepherd — Work Among the Indians — 
Peace Between Sioux and Chippewas — Coming of Bishop 
Whipple — Episcopal Sea City of Minnesota — Seabury Divin- 
ity School — Growth of Episcopalian Influence — Mrs. Shum- 
way's Bequest — Officers of the Mission and Professors of 
the Divinity School — Endowments and Scholarships — Gifts 
of Hon. H. T. Welles, Hon. Isaac Atwater, Dr. E. C. Bill, 
Mrs. Augusta M. (Shumway) Huntington and Junius Mor- 
gan — Recapitulation and Authorities Quoted — By Rev. 
George C. Tanner, D. D. — Shattuck School — By Rev. James 
Dobbin, D. D.— St. Mary's Hall— St. James' School. 

The Bishop Seabury Mission, as a corporate body, dates from 
May 22, 1860. Friday, the fourth, Bishop Henry B. Whipple 
arrived with his family to make Faribault his home. For over 
forty-one years the great bishop went in and out among the 
citizens of Faribault, a central figure, alike beloved and honored, 
until he entered into his rest, September 16, 1901. During all 
this period, exceptionally long and filled with useful deeds, the 
bishop was the leading figure in the corporation, guiding its 
deliberations by his wise and statesmanlike counsels, until he 
saw his work crowned with success, and the schools of the Bishop 
Seabury Mission became known throughout the length and 
breadth of the land as "Bishop Whipple's schools." But for his 
presence and labors these schools could not have attained their 
present success, even if they had existed at all. 

The bishop found a school consisting of three grades — pri- 
mary, intermediate and grammar — with a theological depart- 
ment. In September, 1857, the Rev. J. Lloyd Breck, the Rev. 
Solon W. Manney, and the Rev. E. Steele Peake visited Fari- 
bault with a view to select a site for a church school. The Hon. 
R. A. Mott accompanied the party from point to point, and 
from the bluff where St. Mary's Hall now stands they saw before 
them in its autumnal beauty the valley of the two streams which 



unite to form one river. The beauty of the landscape was irre- 
sistible, and with the combined advantages of wood, water and 
stone for building, the decision was probably made on the spot 
to choose Faribault as the center for church and educational 
work in Minnesota. The same day, September 25, the clergy 
formed an associate mission, to be known by the name of "Saint 
Columba Mission." The scope of country to which the clergy 
were to minister included Faribault, Northfield, Owatonna and 
Waterville, with halt a dozen intervening villages. 

The work of the associate mission included both the white 
and the Indian fields. The latter was to be in charge of the 
Rev. Mr. Peake, with headquarters at St. Columba, a few miles 
from the present city of Brainerd, on Gull lake, where Mr. 
Breck had planted a mission to the Chippewas in 1852. The 
Rev. Mr. Manney was appointed by Bishop Kemper missionary 
of the domestic board at Faribault and parts adjacent, retaining 
for the time his position as chaplain at Fort Ripley. 

Soon after selecting Faribault as the center of Diocesan 
church and educational work, Mr. Breck went east, where he 
spent the winter, visiting the many friends who had contributed 
to his work. In the spring he returned to Minnesota, landing at 
Hastings on the first day of May, 1858. He was accompanied 
by the Rev. David P. Sanford, sometime a presbyter of the dio- 
cese of Connecticut. He also brought with him as teacher Mary 
J. Mills, sister of Mrs. Breck, afterwards Mrs. George B. Whip- 
ple. A little later Mary J. Leigh also joined the mission as a 
teacher. Three young men came from the East with Messrs. 
Breck and Sanford to prepare for the ministry. 

Soon after his return, Mr. Breck visited Faribault to arrange 
definite plans for his future work. Suitable locations for insti- 
tutions were examined, and citizens conferred with. A public 
meeting was held Saturday evening., the fifteenth, at which A. 
J. Tanner was appointed chairman and O. F. Perkins secretary. 
At this meeting Mr. Breck set forth his plans, of which we give a 
brief summary. The work contemplated a "university" in charge 
of the "Associate Mission of Minnesota," incorporated under 
a charter from the legislature, with a male and a female de- 
partment, occupying distinct locations. The male department 
was to have in view the education of youth from abroad, with 
a "boarding establishment," in primary, academical and collegiate 
courses. The female department was to have in view the "edu- 
cation of young children <>f either sex. and of young ladies," 
which, it was hoped, "would grow into a seminary for those from 
.abroad." The liberality of the citizens in offering lands is com- 
mended "as creditable to the public spirit of them all." 

Speaking of the location "f the schools, Mr. Breck says: "I 


have decided for the collegiate buildings of the male department 
in favor of the upper town, and of the female in favor of a loca- 
tion in the lower town on this side (west) of the river. The 
college buildings on the lands of Messrs. Faribault and Fowler, 
the female seminary on a block in the lower town, not yet ulti- 
mately decided upon. We have also chosen the latter as the site 
for the church we intend building in this place. 

"I desire to state to you that there are associated with me 
clergymen of finished education and experience in teaching; also 
ladies of high character and qualifications for both young chil- 
dren and young ladies are secured. 

"The primary school will be opened in a few days for such 
boys and girls as may be entrusted to our care." 

The grounds finally selected for the primary department were 
on the block west of the park, on which the present high school 
building now stands, two lots on the northeast corner of the 
block and a third on the south side of the block, cornering on the 
other two. Of these, one was the generous gift of Mr. Alexander 
Faribault, who, though a member of the Roman Catholic church, 
was always a warm friend of the mission ; and the other two 
the purchase of friends abroad, at a cost of $700. Of the site for 
the future college, where Shattuck School stands, two and a 
half acres were the gift of P. N. Paquin, two and one-half acres 
the gift of D. F. Faribault, the same amount the gift of Felix 
Paquin. This was further enlarged by means of the generous 
gift of $1,000 from the Misses Edwards of New Haven, Conn. 
Farther south on the bluff was the site selected for the female 
seminary, containing fifteen acres, now occupied by Seabury 
Hall. Of this, five acres was the generous gift of Alexander Fari- 
bault, Esq. Here Mr. Breck erected a modest dwelling for him- 
self and the mission family, which included the first teachers and 
the young men who had come with him from the east with the 
ministry in view. In the spring of 1859 a plain building of wood 
was erected for a dormitory for the young men, which may still 
be seen on the edge of the bluff. A residence was also built for 
the Rev. Mr. Sanford in the summer of 1858 on the lot referred 
to in the same block with the Primary school. 

We may remark, in passing, that the title, "The Associate 
Mission for Minnesota," had been given to the work by Mr. 
Breck in 1850. His associates at that time were Messrs. Wilcox- 
son and Merrick. It included educational work in St. Paul as a 
center, and church work at outlying stations. In 1852 Mr. Breck 
began work in the Chippeway county, to which the name St. 
Columba was given. The name St. Columba thus associated with 
the Indian work, was liable to be misunderstood by friends 
abroad. Accordingly, at the instance of the Rev. Mr. Sanford, 


the name was changed to "Bishop Seabury Mission," from Bishop 
Seabury of Connecticut, the first bishop of this church in the 
United States. 

The Primary school for both sexes was opened June 3, 1858, 
in a vacant store building in the south part of the town on Front 
street, between Central avenue and Willow, facing the present 
park. Fifteen pupils were present at the opening. This was the 
beginning of what was to be the "Bishop Seabury University." 
The three young men who were looking forward to the ministry, 
carried on their preparatory studies at the same time with Mr. 
Sanford and Miss Mills. 

Arrangements were made at once to erect a building on the 
block west of the park, on the corner of Sixth street and Third 
avenue, to be used during the week for a school, and for a chape! 
on Sundays. Its dimensions, including the chancel taken off the 
east end, were 50 x 21 feet. The building was of wood, one story, 
with upright boarding, the joinings covered with battens, and in 
the "early Minnesota pointed style." The building, the first 
of the "Bishop Seabury University," was opened with appro- 
priate religious services on Sunday, August 22, at which a dis- 
course was delivered by the Rev. Ezra Jones of St. Peter, on the 
"Connection of Sound Learning and True Religion." The Rev. 
Mr. Breck also made a brief address, in the course of which he 
said that this first house of the Episcopal university had been 
erected by the mutual liberality of citizens here and friends 
abroad. "Last night," said the speaker, "consummated another 
important part of this foundation in the conveyance and complete 
title by gift and purchase on the part of the citizens here and 
friends abroad of the college location, at once beautiful, com- 
manding, and central to Faribault." . . . "This university, 
the child of Faribault, will yet prove the honored instrument of 
Faribault's fame throughout the length and breadth of our land. 
The presence of this institution has already made Faribault 
known to thousands abroad, who would otherwise have had no 
special interest in her." 

The following announcement was made at the same time: 
"The present school house is to be enlarged at once by an addi- 
tion of thirty feet to its length, to comprise recitation rooms 
principally. The school itself will re-open on Thursday, the 9th 
of September." 

Later, the building was enlarged by a transept to the north, 
and, after the coming of Bishop Whipple, of another to the south 
for sittings on Sundays for the growing congregation. The 
entire academical work of the mission was carried on in this first 
building until the erection of Seabury hall on the present grounds 


SEABURY IU\'I.\ [TY school 



of Shattuck school, and was used for divine worship until the 
completion of the cathedral in 1869. 

The school rapidly grew in favor; and, until our present high 
school system was organized, many young people of both sexes 
enjoyed its advantages. A considerable number of children of 
parents of moderate means were educated gratuitously, and 
during the war Bishop Whipple placed the children of the 
soldiers on the free list. We may add here that a goodly number 
of teachers of the rural schools were prepared for their work in 
this first school of the "Bishop Seabury Mission." 

The staff of teachers was further increased in the fall term 
by the coming of George C. Tanner as head master, and S. D. 
Hinman as a teacher. These, with George Barnhart, constituted 
the first class in the theological department under the Rev. D. P. 

During the fall term, 1858, sixty-seven pupils were enrolled, 
and at the close of the school year, 1858-59, one hundred and two. 
The entire enrollment from the first, at the close of this, the fifth 
term in the history of the school, had been one hundred and sixty- 
seven. Of this number, one hundred and thirty-four were present 
at the first anniversary which took place August 17, on the 
grounds of the present Seabury hall. The Rev. E. G. Gear made 
the opening prayer, and the Rev. D. B. Knickerbacker, of Minne- 
apolis, the address. Two divinity students, candidates for holy 
orders, and three members of the high school with the ministry 
in view, were matriculated as members of the mission. These 
were addressed by the Rev. Solon W. Manney; and the entire 
school, by the Rev. Mark L. Olds, of Minneapolis. The educa- 
tional staff for the first year, or up to this time, consisted of two 
clergymen, two male, and two female teachers, and four pupil 
assistants. The character of the school was thus to be normal, 
and to prepare young people to become teachers, as well as for 
other fields of usefulness. 

In the fall of 1858 a division of the work was made, and the 
parish of "The Church of the Good Shepherd" was organized 
October 26, with the Rev. David P. Sanford in charge as rector. 
He continued to instruct the students in divinity until he with- 
drew from the mission. His final service was March 10, 1859. 
He was followed by the Rev. Solon W. Manney, who arrived with 
his family May 23, the same year. Meanwhile, the Rev. Mr. 
Breck had been invited by the vestry to take charge of the parish, 
a relation which continued until his removal to California in 
1867. Though legally separate, the parish was connected with 
the mission, since it was not self-sustaining. Mr. Breck was thus 
the head or dean of the entire work of the church in Faribault, 


having the oversight of the young men and of the missionary 
field, and the correspondence of the mission. 

The support of the associate mission came from friends abroad 
through the daily mail. This had been the case at Nashotah in 
Wisconsin, at St. Paul, and in the Indian country. 

In the spring of 1859 Mr. Breck brought several Chippeway 
children to Faribault to be educated under the influences of the 
church. For this purpose he erected a cottage the following 
year, adjoining his own residence, which, in honor of the first 
missionary to the Five Nations, he named Andrews' hall. Some 
Dakota children were afterwards received, and the children of 
these two tribes, who had been at deadly feud from time immemo- 
rail, were educated together. As a precautionary measure, the 
Chippeway children were at first carefully watched over, and 
were not allowed to go out after nightfall. After two or three 
years, the Indian department was discontinued. 

In the summer of 1859 occurred the ordination of J. Johnson 
Enmegahbowh, a full-blood Chippeway, as deacon. In 1852, when 
Mr. Breck began work in the Indian country, Enmegahbowh 
became his interpreter, and a member of the mission at St. 
Columba. Immediately after the convention of 1859, Enmegah- 
bowh came to Faribault, where he was ordained by Bishop 
Kemper, Sunday, July 3. 

The importance of the event requires further notice. Up to 
this time a Chippeway could not enter the territory of the Sioux 
except at the risk of losing his scalp, if not his life. Sunday was 
a day long to be remembered. Within the chancel is the vener- 
able Bishop Kemper and the Rev. Mr. Peake. Outside the 
chancel is the Chippeway candidate, on either side the Rev. Mr. 
Breck and Mr. Manney, and near these, the Chippeway, Mani- 
towab, who had come to be present at the ordination, while in 
close proximity, many Sioux Indians from their tepees were 
lookers-on of this strange scene. Later in the day. after divine 
service, a council was held at which the Chippeway chief, taking 
the hand of the chief man of the Sioux, addressed them through 
an interpreter as follows: "Once I followed the war path and 
thought it led to glory, but I am long since of a different mind. 
I have become a Christian, and this makes me love you as 
brothers. I wish you all to become Christians and live as do the 
whites and we shall love one another. It is our blindness and 
ignorance which occasion our going to war together. We must 
do so no more, and then the Greal Spirit will receive us all into 
one family and we shall prosper and live." 

The evening >>f the same day. the Dacotah chief with some of 
his braves visited us at the minimi house and had a long inter- 
view with the three Chippeways and their missionaries. 


The mission school at Faribault was happily at once recog- 
nized as the medium of the friendship of the two tribes. At 
least, from this time no party from either nation seems to have 
gone upon the war path. At once the Dacotahs brought their 
children to the school to be taught ; and it was the intention to 
receive some of the more promising ones of both nations to be 
trained as catechists and missionaries to their own people. 

The school year of 1859-60 opened with the following 
teachers: George C. Tanner, A. M.; S. D. Hinman, James 
Dobbin, A. M. ; Mary J. Mills and Mary J. Leigh. The various 
departments, as appears on the reports, were juvenile, primary, 
high school, organized at the anniversary, college, unorganized, 
and the divinity school. George C. Tanner was a graduate of 
Brown University, James Dobbin, a pupil of Dr. Nott and a 
graduate of Union College, New York, and the others had been 
connected with well known educational institutions of high 
standing in the east. 

The year 1859 marks an important epoch, the turning point 
in the fortunes of the Bishop Seabury mission. At the diocesan 
convention held in the city of St. Paul, June 29, 30 and July 1, 
the Rev. Henry Benjamin Whipple was elected bishop of Minne- 
sota, and was consecrated at Richmond, Va., October 14, that 
year. His first visit to Faribault was made in February, 1860, 
his first sermon was preached Quinquagesima Sunday to a con- 
gregation which crowded the chapel. It would be difficult to 
describe the impression his sermons produced. The following 
Tuesday a committee of the citizens called upon him and invited 
him to make Faribault his residence, pledging him $1,168, be- 
sides several lots of land towards the erection of an episcopal 
residence. Later, Alexander Faribault, with great liberality, 
offered him five acres for this purpose. 

After carefully considering the matter, the bishop addressed 
the following letter to the committee: 

"St. Paul, March 24, 1860. 
"Messrs. L. S. Pease, W. S. Judd, J. C. N. Cottrell. 

"Gentlemen : After a careful examination of the whole matter, 
I have decided to select Faribault as the residence of the bishop 
upon the terms proposed by your committee, with this one excep- 
tion. As a servant of Christ in charge of a large missionary 
field, I have no right to judge the future so far as to pledge 
that under no call of duty would I leave Faribault. My action 
must be guided by my sense of duty to Christ and His church. 
I have no knowledge of anything which will lead me to change 
my residence. But my friends in Faribault must be willing to 
leave me free. Should this meet the approval of your citizens, 


you may secure for me the house of Mr. Faribault, and have it 
ready for me May 1. With my hearty thanks to yourselves and 
the citizens of Faribault, and praying God to bless you, I am 
faithfully yours, H. B. Whipple, Bishop of Minnesota." 

In his annual address to the convention of the diocese, June 13, 
1860, the bishop gives his reasons for this choice. "It is a favor- 
able center for missionary work in the midst of a rapidly increas- 
ing population. It offers a feasible plan for the establishment 
of church schools. Its citizens alone made a definite offer to 
aid in erecting a house for the bishop." 

This house, unfinished, stood at the southeast corner of 
Central avenue and Sixth street. It was finished and occupied 
by the bishop in 1861. Additions were subsequently made to it 
and here the bishop opened St. Mary's hall in 1866. The bishop 
continued to reside here until the erection of the bishop's house 
opposite the cathedral. 

Up to this time Mr. Breck had been the head of the associate 
mission. As correspondent and treasurer, he disbursed the funds 
received through the daily mail and held in trust the real estate 
acquired for the mission. He was responsible to no one. There 
was no endowment or definite support. The salaries of four 
clergymen depended upon the gifts received from day to day. 
This continued for several years, until after the bishop's influ- 
ence increased the gifts of individuals. This was through 
personal friends, Sunday schools and parishes. The bishop found 
an indebtedness of $5,000 or $6,000, an amount nearly equal to 
the value of the property of the mission. By his personal efforts 
through letters and addresses, he enlisted the sympathy and 
interest of churchmen of means and placed the institution on a 
permanent foundation. 

The second anniversary of the Seabury mission took place 
August 8, 1860, on the grounds now occupied by Shattuck school, 
then a (hick forest. A large number of visitors and friends of the 
Institution came together from all parts of the state. The pro- 
cession, which formed at the chapel near the park, consisted of 
the juvenile and primary departments and the high school, with 
former pupils and visitors, to the number of about four hundred, 
who marched to the grounds where many were already assem- 
bled, so that the entire number could not have fallen far short 
of a thousand. The first address was made by General Cole, of 
Faribault, and contained passages of singular beauty. We quote 
a single sentence, because it gives us a vivid picture of the early 
settlement of the state. 

"Those whom I see around me today, have been driven hither 
from all parts of our common country by that restless love of 


gain and adventure, which, booted and spurred, rides the Amer- 
ican youth from his cradle to his grave." 

"Ten years ago, the stranger, standing upon this eminence, 
would have looked upon a landscape of wondrous beauty, selected 
by the Dakota with that singular appreciation of the beautiful 
in nature, which is an instinct with the savage, as his favorite 
camping ground. These noble forests were as green then as now. 
The prairie flowers bloomed as thickly and diffused their 
fragrance as bountifully. Along the banks of yonder stream a 
long line of Indian wigwams glistened in the morning sunlight, 
the homes of the fathers of those red children who are now 
being redeemed from barbarism within the walls of your sem- 
inary. Upon those sites, now made sacred by your hearthstones, 
the Indian woman pounded her corn. Up and down the level 
plain, now marked by the main street of your village, dashed 
a band of braves in mimic fight, exulting in the hideous pomp of 
savage warfare. Mighty herds of buffalo cropped the grass 
where roll yon waves of golden grain. No hum of industry, no 
church-going bell, naught but the monotonous chant of the medi- 
cine men and the wild whoop of the warrior. 

The deadly feud which has for ages decimated the rival 
nations who possessed this land, has yielded to the efforts of the 
missionary; and their offspring today mingle at the altar their 
infant voices in the worship of the Christian's God. 

The address of the bishop which followed was a vision oi 
the future as that of General Cole had been of the past, from 
which we quote a few characteristic sentences. 

"It is less than three years ago that there came to this village 
some loving hearts who desired to plant here a school for God. 
They came empty-handed and alone — no corps of teachers — no 
endowments — no glebes of land — no scrip or purse. He who 
watches every venture of faith was their protector and their 

"The schools we seek to rear are Christian schools. We 
would omit no branch of learning needed for the discipline 
of life; we would make these boys in all that makes man 
manly, men of mind, of strong wills, of patient spirit, of perse- 
vering toil — such men as mold the state. * * * We would 
make these girls all that Christian daughters, Christian wives 
and Christian mothers ought to be. 

"Ours is to be also a school of the Prophets. We seek to 
train up Christian teachers and send forth hence heralds of the 
cross. It was only yesterday that we began, and yet God has 
already sent to us from the workshop and the farm many young 
men in the pride of youthful vigor to be trained for the highest 
and holiest service found on earth. 


"There are here some children of the forest. Go with me 
to an Indian village; see the childhood by the wigwam, untaught, 
untrained, naked, with heathenism stamped upon its face; re- 
member that these Indian children of the wigwam are born 
with an inheritance of disease, heathen degradation, and poverty 
and death; there is not a ray of light on their darkness; they 
will live and die without ever knowing of a Christ and Savior. 
Look on them as a Christian man will look, with a Christian 
heart. Come, now, while the teardrops linger in your eyes and 
the shadow of that darkness is on your heart, to a happier 
scene. Tell me if a world of labor is not more than paid to 
see these children of the red man rejoicing with other Christian 
children, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in their right 
mind? There is no Christian heart here today that is not the 
happier that these clear children are also lambs in our Christian 

"You see here no college halls, no massive piles of costly 
buildings; there is seen by His eye which reads the secret 
thoughts a fairer temple being reared in children's hearts. This 
we have learned to do — to work on, hope ever, to believe with 
surest faith that the foundation laid for God shall yet be finished 
with rejoicing." 

After a collation in the grove, Judge Atwater addressed the 
young men of the school in a few well-chosen words. The 
school year closed with the examination of the class in theology, 
conducted by Professor Manney in the presence of several of 
the clergy. About 150 students had been enrolled in the several 
departments during the school year just ended. 

Faribault had now become the official center of the work of 
the Episcopal church in Minnesota and was attracting the atten- 
tion of churchmen outside the diocese. The bishop naturally 
became the head of the associate mission, which, after the ordi- 
nation of Enmegahbouh, consisted of Messrs. Breck, Manney. 
Peake and Enmegahbowh. The missionary paper, issued soon 
after the arrival of the bishop, gives the following as the first 
trustees of the Bishop Seabury Mission: II. B. Whipple, bishop 
of Minnesota; J. Lloyd Breck; S. W. Manney; F. S. Peake. 
The bishop was president by virtue of his office, and Dr. Breck 
was made secretary, with the correspondence of the mission, 
and Dr. Manney treasurer. The articles of incorporation pro- 
vided for the addition of lay members. Sometime between 
October and December, 1861, the number was further increased 
by the election of the Rev. E. G. Gear, chaplain I'. S .A., Fort 
Ripley; Rev. D. B. Knickerbacker, of Minneapolis; Rev. E. P. 
Grey,' of Shakopee; Hon. II. T. Wells; Hon. F. T. Wilder, and 
Gen. N. J. T. Dana, U. S. A. In the Trinity issue of the mis- 


sionary paper, 1862, we find the additional names of Rev. E. 
R. Welles, of Red Wing, and C. W. Woolley, of St. Paul. In 
1864 the name of the Rev. E. S. Peake reappears. In 1866 some 
changes had taken place from removals, and we find the name of 
the Rev. S. Y. McMaster added to the list in the missionary 
paper issued in the summer of that year. The number of trustees 
could be increased to twenty. A full list to the present time 
will be found at the end of this paper. 

At the instance of the bishop, the title of the "Bishop Sea- 
bury University" was dropped and the simple name of grammar 
school used as expressing the real work done. Until 1865 the 
educational work was carried on in the plain building of wood 
in the town. In September, 1860, the bishop ordained the first 
graduates of Seabury Divinity school. Of these, two in num- 
ber, the Rev. George C. Tanner remained in the educational 
work and the Rev. Samuel D. Hinman was appointed the first 
missionary of our church to the Sioux, with residence at the 
"Lower" or "Redwood Agency," on the upper Minnesota river. 
This mission, named by Mr. Hinman "The Mission of St. John 
the Beloved Disciple," was never a part of the Bishop Seabury 
Mission, but was under the special care of Bishop Whipple. 

The missionary paper of April, 1861, gives the following 
arrangement of the work : 

"The freshman class numbers four, who are instructed by 
the Rev. Prof. Manney, of the theological department, and the 
Rev. G. C. Tanner, of the grammar school. 

"The grammar school is under the head mastership of the 
Rev. G. C. Tanner, assisted by G. B. Whipple, Prof. Manney 
and several of the older students. During the Easter term, 
which has just closed, there were fifty-five scholars, eleven of 
whom are preparing for the ministry. There is also a girls' 
school attached to the mission, under the charge of Hannah 
De Lancey. 

"The Indian department, known as Andrews hall, contains 
nineteen children and youth of both sexes, of the Chippewa and 
Dacotah nations, some of whom we hope will be messengers 
of peace to their own people. 

"We have under our care sixteen young men whom we are 
educating for the sacred ministry." 

The anniversary of 1861 was celebrated on the mission 
grounds, where the present Seabury hall stands, July 8. The 
opening address was made by the Hon. H. T. Welles, of Min- 
neapolis. His subject was "The Vocation of the Christian 
Scholar, His Relation to His Country and Its Government." 
He was followed by the Hon. Isaac Atwater, whose theme was 
"Christian Education" in the home and the school. Both ad- 


dresses were thoughtful and were listened to with profound 
interest. Want of space forbids any quotation. 

At Easter, 1862, the missionary paper gives the following 
arrangement of the work for 1861-62: 

"The divinity department remained the same as in 1860-61. 
Rt. Rev. II. B. Whipple, D. D., professor of pastoral theology 
and pulpit eloquence; Rev. Solon W. Manney, A. M., professor 
of systematic divinity and acting, professor of ecclesiastical his- 
tory and exegesis; Rev. J. Lloyd Breck, D. D., professor of 
Biblical literature and the Book of Common Prayer. In the 
grammar school— Rev. George C. Tanner, A. M., professor of 
mathematics and languages; Enoch C. Cowan, head master. 
Andrews hall— Susan Phelps, matron; Annie Bull, assistant and 
teacher. St. Columba Mission (Chippewa)— Rev. E. Steele 
Peake in charge, residing at Crow Wing; Rev. J. Johnson En- 
megahbowh, deacon, residing at Gull Lake. 

The Dacotah Mission was not under the care of the Bishop 
Seabury Mission, but was under Bishop Whipple, and Mrs. 
Whipple continues to be the patroness of the work. 

Mrs. Breck, who had been interested in the Chippewa work, 
passed away April 8, 1862, and now sleeps in the churchyard 
near St. James' School. 

The only modification of the educational work for 1862-63 is: 
Grammar school, Rev. J. Lloyd Breck, D. D., rector, and the 
addition of Herbert Hubbell to the staff of teachers. Dr. Breck 
was rector of the parish. 

The Christmas "Missionary" for 1863 gives: "Young ladies' 
school, Hannah De Lancey and S. P. Darlington, teachers. Miss 
Darlington was the daughter of Dr. Darlington, the scientist, 
of Philadephia, who had come to Minnesota for her health. 
She subsequently became the first principal of Saint Mary's 
hall. The Rev. Mr. Peake, who had been appointed chaplain 
of a Wisconsin regiment, had retired from the Chippewa Mis- 
sion in 1862. 

In 1864 an advance was made in the educational work of the 
mission. The Rev. Elisha Smith Thomas, late bishop of Kan- 
sas, was elected professor of exegesis and Hebrew and entered 
upon his duties October, that year. In the grammar school, 
George P. Huntington, a gradute of Harvard University and a 
son of Bishop Huntington, is added to the staff. Mr. Hubbell 
retires in the early part of the year. The Indian department 
has been dropped and Miss Phelps becomes matron of Seabury 
hall. Mr. Huntington had come to Minnesota for his health, but. 
failing to receive the expected benefit, remained but one year. 
The breaking out of the Civil War in 1861 was a critical period in 
the history of the mission. The churchmen of the South, notably 


of South Carolina, had been liberal supporters of the associate 
mission. This naturally ceased. The bishop had but lately come 
to the diocese. Yet, with a large-hearted faith, he decided to 
extend the scope of his work. July 16, 1862, he laid the corner- 
stone of the "Cathedral of Our Merciful Savior" with an appro- 
priate address, and the following day the cornerstone of Sea- 
bury hall for the Divinity school. These were the first perma- 
nent buildings of the mission, those hitherto erected being of 
wood. Seabury hall stood on the brow of the hill, north and 
south, west of the present Shattuck hall, and was to form one of 
a quadrangle. The funds for the erection of these buildings 
were contributed by the friends of the associate mission in the 
East. The same day was the fourth anniversary of the mission. 
The Rev. E. P. Grey, of Shakopee, and the Rev. Edward R. 
Welles of Red Wing, delivered the addresses. 

About Christmas, 1864, the new Seabury hall was ready 
for occupancy and the students who had been boarding in the 
town removed to the hall. Professor Thomas was in charge 
as warden, residing in the hall. The educational work con- 
tinued to be carried on during the rest of the year in the 
school building in the town. The only bridges over the river 
were on Second and Fourteenth streets, and in high water the 
hall could be reached only by a circuitous route or by boats. 
The usual method was by a plank across the stream near Ninth 
street. A thick forest covered the grounds in 1862, and the 
south end of the present campus was a swamp. 

In the fall of 1865 a further change was made in the edu- 
cational work. A schoolroom was fitted up on the third floor 
of Seabury hall and the Rev. George C. Tanner was appointed 
head master of the academical department, while Professor 
Thomas had the oversight of all the students as warden. This 
included the divinity students and all other students, outside of 
school hours, living on the grounds. This arrangement con- 
tinued until Easter, 1866, when the mission house, occupied by 
Dr. Breck, was burned, and residence had to be provided for 
him. Accordingly, Professor Thomas removed to the town, 
and Dr. Breck was made dean of the entire work, in residence 
in the hall. 

The original plan of the associate mission contemplated the 
education of young men for the ministry, to which the academ- 
ical work was subsidiary. Mr. Breck had come to St. Paul in 
1850 with the purpose of training up clergy for the Northwest. 
As Bishop Kemper thought it too early to plant another divinity 
school in the Northwest, Mr. Breck took up the Indian work. 
When driven out of the Indian country by drunken Indians, he 
returned to his original plan of a theological school. At the 


opening of the associate mission in 1858 there were no boarders 
save the young men looking forward to the ministry. These 
were members of Mr. Breck's family and occupied the dormitory 
near the mission house on the hill, and later boarded in the 
families of the bishop and clergy. 

One important reason for selecting Faribault for the asso- 
ciate mission had been its location as a center for church work. 
In this particular Faribault was the most centrally located town 
in the territory. Work was begun at Northfield, Owatonna. 
Waterville, where parishes have been organized and churches 
built. The parish at Waseca is also the outgrowth of work 
begun at Wilton, where a church was erected in 1865. Other 
missions are Morristown, Warsaw, Elvsian, Roberds' Lake, 
Cannon City and Dundas, in all of which churches have been 
built and services supplied by the clergy and students of Sea- 
bury hall, not to mention other points where occasional services 
have been held. 

The second class to be ordained after completing their studies 
at Seabury consisted of George Brayton Whipple and Solomon 
S. Burleson, ordained September 28, 1863. Mr. Whipple had 
come to Faribault with his brother, the bishop, in 1860, and 
had taught in the grammar school while pursuing his studies, 
and among other important positions was later in charge of the 
parish and chaplain of St. Mary's hall. The largest class or- 
dained in the early history of the school was in 1867, among 
whom were James Dobbin, Charles Hurd Plummer and Enoch 
Crosby Cowan. The last named went with Dr. Breck to Cali- 
fornia ; the two others have exercised their ministry in the 
diocese — Dr. Dobbin as the rector of Shattuck school, and Dr. 
Plummer for so many years as the beloved rector at Lake 
City. To give individual histories further would be impossible. 

After Bishop Whipple came to Faribault some of his friends 
placed their sons in the school under his care. These occupied, 
temporarily, convenient rooms near and boarded in the bishop's 
family. The number grew when Seabury hall was completed, 
and was further increased with the facilities for taking care of 
them and with the reputation of the school. It was intended 
that the income from board and tuition should assist in defraying 
the expenses of educating the young men for the ministry. This 
condition of things continued until the burning of Seabury hall, 
Thanksgiving day, 1872, and the consequent separation of the 
schools. In the fall of 1866 Mr. Tanner was obliged to give 
up teaching on account of his health. Dr. Breck remained as 
dean until the close of the school year, when lie resigned and 
removed to the Pacific cori>t. The same summer Mr. Dobbin. 
who had returned to Faribault in 1864. to pursue his theological 


studies, was ordained and placed in charge of Seabury hall and of 
the academical work. As the number of students increased, 
temporary provision was made for them. A frame building for 
a schoolroom and recitations had been erected in 1865, and other 
arrangements were made as circumstances required. 

As the bishop went about the diocese he drew to Faribault 
the sons of prominent citizens in the state, and the school 
became known as the Bishop's school, a name by which it has 
always been recognized. This growth made a new building 
necessary. Accordingly, in 1869 a second permanent building 
was completed, and in honor of Dr. George C. Shattuck, of 
Boston, the largest donor, was named Shattuck hall, a name by 
which the school, as well as the hall, is known. The purpose 
of this building was for the grammar school exclusively. 

No special changes which need be noticed here occurred 
until 1872, when Seabury hall was burned on Thanksgiving day. 
This resulted in the entire separation of the theological depart- 
ment from the grammar school. For the rest of the year the 
divinity students occupied temporary quarters until the present 
hall was completed. The new Seabury hall was opened Thanks- 
giving day, 1873. From 1872 the history of the two schools is 
treated separately, though both were under the direction of 
the corporation of the Bishop Seabury Mission. 

Not only did the strong personality of Bishop Whipple im- 
press itself upon the mission, but the success of the schools is 
due to him in securing the necessary funds for carrying on the 
work. When the bishop came to Faribault he was compara- 
tively a stranger to the church outside of the parishes where 
he had ministered. During the first year of his episcopate he 
received about $600 for his work. The indebtedness of the Sea- 
bury Mission was probably more than the entire property would 
have brought at a forced sale. In 1862 he dared to lay the 
foundation of the cathedral and Seabury hall. In 1869 Shattuck 
hall was erected. During this time instructors had to be paid 
and outside work provided for. A library was needed. Hearing 
that the library at Palmyra College, Missouri, was to be sold, 
the bishop decided to purchase it for Seabury. This was further 
increased during his visit to England in 1864-65 by the gift of 
many valuable books. The Emperor of Russia, through Hiram 
Sibley, a friend of the bishop, presented a valuable copy of the 
"Codex Sinaiticus," one of the oldest manuscripts of the New 
Testament. Other additions have been made from time to time. 

Thus far the students had assembled for worship in the 
schoolroom. In 1869-70, during his visit abroad, the bishop met 
his former parishioner, Mrs. Augusta M. Shumway, who became 
interested in his schools and was moved to erect a chapel as a 


memorial to a beloved daughter, lately deceased. Then came 
the Chicago fire. A person of less heroic devotion would have 
felt justified in giving up the work. But to her lasting honor, a 
pledge once made was more than fulfilled, and the chapel, though 
costing a much larger sum than at first pledged, was conse- 
crated by Bishop Whipple September 23, 1873. 

Mrs. Shumway, who later became Mrs. Huntington, con- 
tinued her interest in Shattuck school. In 1884, during a visit to 
Colorado, she was thrown from her carriage, receiving serious 
injuries, which resulted in her death. By her will it was found 
that she had left a bequest to the Bishop Seabury Mission pro- 
viding for a building and scholarships for Shattuck school, and 
also for a hall at Seabury Divinity school, to be named in 
memory of her father "Johnston Hall," and scholarships for 
young men preparing for the ministry. Shumway hall, com- 
pleted in 1887, is a beautiful memorial to her memory. The 
cornerstone of Johnston hall was laid in 1888. The building 
contains the library, rooms for recitations and professors, and 
is substantially built. 

Hitherto the refectory of Shattuck school had been the base- 
ment and had been enlarged to meet the pressing wants from 
the growth of the school. But the time had come when pro- 
vision must be made proportionate to the expansion of the work. 
During his visit abroad in 1888 Bishop Whipple met Junius 
Morgan, of London, whose interest in the work of the bishop 
led to the erection of the noble building which bears the name 
of Morgan hall, in honor of Mr. Morgan. 

Whipple hall, erected in 1873, was built mostly from the 
insurance money of Seabury hall. 

Manney hall, armory and gymnasium, erected by gifts of the 
citizens of Faribault, was afterwards burned. 

The following is a list of the officers of the Bishop Seabury 
Mission and of the professors in the divinity school: 

Presidents— The Right Rev. Henry P.. Whipple, D. D., LL. 
D., 1860-1901 ; the Right Rev. Samuel C. Edsall, D. D., 1901. 

Wardens— The Rev. James Lloyd Breck, D. D., 1858-1864; 
the Right Rev. Elisha S. Thomas, D. D., 1864-1866; the Rev. 
James Lloyd I'.reck, D. D., 1866-1867; the Rev. Thomas Richey, 
D. I)., 1871-1874; the Rev. George L. Chase. D. D., 1874-1883; 
the Rev. Francis D. Hoskins, M. A.. 1884-1888; the Right Rev. 
John II. White, D. P.. 1891-1895; the Rev. Alford A. Butler, 
D. D., 1895-1905; the Rev. George M. Davis, S. N., D. D.. 1905- 
1907; the Rev. frank A. McElwain, M. A.. B. D., 1"07. 

Acting Wardens— The Rev. James Dobbin, D. D.. 1867-1871 ; 
the Rev. Steinfort Kedney, D. D., 1883-1884; the Rev. Charles 
L Welles, l'h. [).. 1889 1891; the Rev. Charles Clark Camp. A. 


B., 1904; the Rev. Charles A. Poole, S. T. D., 1905 . 

Professor of Pastoral Theology — The Right Rev. Henry B. 
Whipple, D. D., LL. D., 1860-1901. 

Professors of Liturgies and Homiletics — The Rev. James 
Lloyd Breck, D. D., 1858-1860; the Right Rev. Henry B. Whip- 
ple, D. D., LL. D., 1860-1874; the Rev. George L. Chase, D. D., 
1874-1883; the Rev. Francis D. Hoskins, M. A., (homiletics), 
1884-1888; the Rev. Edward C. Bill, D. D., 1883-1892; The Right 
Rev. John H. White, D. D., 1892-1895 ; the Rev. Alford A. But- 
ler, D. D., 1895-1904; the Rev. George H. Davis, D. D., 1905- 
1907; the Rev. Frank A. McElwain, M. A., B. D., 1907. 

Professors of Divinity — The Rev. David P. Sanford, D. D., 
1858-1859; the Rev. Solon W. Manney, D. D., 1859-1869; the 
Rev. Samuel Buel, D. D., 1869-1871 ; the Rev. J. Steinfort Ked- 
ney, D. D., 1871 ; the Rev. Charles A. Poole, S. T. D., (associate), 

Professors of Exegesis — The Rev. Solon W. Manney, D. D., 
1859-1864; the Right Rev. Elisha S. Thomas, D. D., 1864-1870; 
the Rev. George C. Tanner, D. D., (acting), 1871-1873; the Rev. 
William J. Gold, D. D., (adjunct), 1873-1876; the Rev. E. Stuart 
Wilson, S. T. D., 1877-1905 ; the Rev. Charles A. Poole, S. T. D., 
(adjunct N. T.). 1888-1892; the Rev. Charles C. Camp, B. A., 
(New Testament), 1892-1905; the Rev. Frank A. McElwain, A. 
M., B. D., (instructor), 1905-1907; the Rev. Elmer E. Lofstrom, 
B. D., (instructor N. T.), 1907; the Rev. Frank A. McElwain 
(Old Testament), 1907. 

Professors of Ecclesiastical History — The Rev. Samuel Buel, 
D. D., 1866-1869; the Rev. Thomas Richey, D. D., 1869-1877; the 
Rev. Frederic Humphrey (acting), 1877-1882; the Rev. Lucius 
Waterman, D. D., 1882-1885; the Rev. Sylvester Clark, D. D., 
1885-1887; the Rev. Charles L. Welles, Ph. D., 1887-1892; the 
Rev. William P. Ten Broeck, D. D., 1892. 

Professors of Ethics and Apologetics — The Rev. Sterling 
Y. McMasters, D. D., 1866-1875 ; the Rev. J. Steinfort Kedney, 
D. D., (acting), 1877-1882; the Rev. J. McBride Sterrett, D. D., 
1882-1892; the Rev. J. Steinfort Kedney, D. D., (acting), 1892- 
1905; the Rev. Anthon T. Gesner, M. A., (instructor), 1904-1907; 
the Rev. Anthon T. Gesner, M. A., 1907. 

The faculty is now as follows : The Right Rev. Samuel 
Cook Edsall, D. D., president and lecturer on the pastoral office; 
the Rev. Frank Arthur McElwain, M. A., B. D., warden and 
professor of Hebrew and Old Testament literature; the Rev. 
John Steinfort Kedney, D. D., professor of divinity; the Rev. 
Charles A. Poole, S. T. D., associate professor of divinity; the 
Rev. William P. Ten Broeck, D. D., professor of church history 
and polity and canon law; the Rev. Anthon T. Gesner, M. A., 


professor of ethics, apologetics and head of preparatory depart- 
ment ; the Rev. Elmer E. Lofstrom, B. A., B. D., instructor in 
New Testament language and exegesis, and religious peda- 
gogics ; the Very Rev. George G. Bartlett, instructor in homi- 
letics ; the Rev. George C. Tanner, D. D., instructor in liturgies. 
Of the above, we may remark that two of the wardens and pro- 
fessors have been elected bishops, namely, the Rev. E. S. 
Thomas and the Rev. John H. White. Prominent among writers 
in the church have been the Rev. Thomas Richey, D. D., the 
Rev. J. Steinfort Kedney, D. D., the Rev. Samuel Buel, D. D., 
the Rev. Sterling Y. McMasters, D. D., the Rev. J. McBride 
Sterrett, D. D., the Rev. Charles L. Welles, Ph. D., the Rev. 
Alford A. Butler, D. D. Others well known in the church as 
writers of special papers and monographs are the Rev. William 
P. Ten Broeck, D. D., the Rev. E. Stuart Wilson, D. D., the 
Rev. William J. Gold, D. D., of the Western Theological Semi- 
nary, Chicago, and the Rev. Elmer E. Lofstrom, B. D. 

Trustees of the Bishop Seabury Mission. Right Rev. H. B. 
Whipple, D. D., LL. D., 1860 to December, 1901 ; Rev. J. Lloyd 
Breck, D. D., 1860-1867; Rev. Solon W. Manney, D. D.. 1860- 
1869; Rev. E. Steele Peake, 1860-1866; Rev. E. G. Gear, D. D.. 
1861-1873; Rev. D. B. Knickerbacker. D. D„ 1861-1884; Hon. 
H. T. Welles, 1861-1897; Hon. E. T. Wilder. 1861-1904; Gen. 
N. J. T. Dana, U. S. A., 1861-1866; Right Rev. E. R. Welles. D. 
D., 1862-1875; C. W. Wooley, 1862-1866; Rev. S. Y. McMasters, 
D. D., 1865-1875; J. C. N. Cottrell, 1866-1870; Luther Dearborn, 
1866-1883; Rev. Samuel Buel, D. D., 1867-1871; Right Rev. E. 
S. Thomas. D. D., 1868-1894; Rev. James Dobbin, D. D., 1868; 
Lorenzo Allis, Esq., 1869-1878; Rev. Thomas Richey, D. D., 
1870-1875; Harvey Officer, Esq., 1871-1892; Hon. E. C. Ripley, 
1871-1874; J. D. Greene, 1871-1884; W. E. Jones, 1871-1883; Rev. 
J. Steinfort Kedney. D. D., 1872; Gen. N. G. McLean. 1874- 
1883; Hon. Isaac Atwater, 1874-1906; Rev. George L. Chase. D. 
D., 1875-1883; Rev George W. Watson, D. D., 1877-1886; Will- 
iam Dawson, 1882-1887; A. II. Wilder, 1883-1891; Rev. Thomas 
I',. Wells, 1). D., 1884-1891; Right Rev. Mahlon X. Gilbert, D. 
D., 1884-1900; J. C. N. Cottrell, 1884; Reuben Warner. 1884- 
1905; Rev. F. D. Hoskins, 1885-1888; Hon. Gordon E. Cole, 
1888-1891 ; John H. Ames, 1888-1902; George II. Christian, 1889; 
Right Rev. William M. Barker, D. D., 1890-1895; William Daw- 
son, Jr., 1891-1897; Rev. George H. Davis, 1891-1907; Right Rev. 
John II. White, D. D„ 1891-1902; W. H. Lightner, Esq., 1892; 
Herbert C. Theopold, 1804; Rev. A. W. Ryan. D. C. L.. 1895; 
W. M. Prindle, 1896; Right Rev. J. D. Morrison, D. D.. LL. D., 
1897; B. B. Sheffield, 1897; Right Rev. S. C. Edsall, D. D.. 1900; 
Right Rev. T. N. Morrison, D. D.. 1901 ; Right Rev. Arthur L. 


Williams, D. D., 1901; Right Rev. Cameron Mann, D. D., 1902; 
Andrew G. Dunlop, 1904; Rev. Charles H. Plummer, D. D., 
1905; Alfred H. Bill, 1907; Rev. Charles Carter Rollit, 1908; 
Edward H. Foot, 1908; Right Rev. William Hobal Howe, D. 
D., 1909. 

The present officers of the board are : Right Rev. Samuel 
Cook Edsall, D. D., president ; Rev. James Dobbin, D. D., sec- 
retary; Stephen Jewett, Esq., treasurer. 

There have been but two presidents — the Right Rev. H. B. 
Whipple, D. D., LL. D., and the Right Rev. S. C. Edsall, D. D. 

The secretaries have been : The Rev. J. Lloyd Breck, D. D., 
secretary and correspondent ; the Rev. E. S. Thomas, D. D., cor- 
respondent; the Rev. D. B. Knickerbacker, correspondent; the 
Rev. James Dobbin, D. D. 

The treasurers have been : The Rev. Solon W. Manney, 
D. D., the Rev. Samuel Buel, D. D., the Hon. Luther Dearborn, 
H. A. Scandrett, J. D. Green, Stephen Jewett, Esq. 

Endowments and Scholarships. For the first years of its 
existence the Bishop Seabury Mission depended for its support 
on the contributions sent through the daily mail. This means 
that clergy, instructors and students in theology had to depend 
upon the casual gifts of children and parishes in the East. The 
Rev. Mr. Breck was the correspondent. But this uncertain 
income could not build up and endow a system of schools. In 
some instances the support of a young man for the ministry 
was provided by some friend. The earliest bequest appears to 
have been about 1865. To make a full record of all the bequests 
and endowments for professorships, scholarships and for general 
expenses is not necessary for the purpose of this sketch. It is 
highly proper to speak of the Hon. H. T. Welles and the Hon. 
Isaac Atwater, whose gifts at different times have been note- 
worthy, and also of the endowment of Dr. E. C. Bill for a pro- 
fessorship. The munificent donation of Mrs. Augusta M. Hunt- 
ington and of Mr. Junius Morgan have already been named. 
With few exceptions, all these bequests and endowments came 
through the personal influence of Bishop Whipple. 

More than 300 students, who are now scattered from the At- 
lantic to the Pacific, have received the benefits of the institution. 
Two have become bishops and many of them are occupying 
positions of influence in large parishes. 

Seabury and Johnston halls afford accommodations for about 
thirty-five students. 

The writer is indebted for the material of this history to 
the Faribault "Herald," 1858, the Faribault "Republican," Bishop 
Whipple's diaries, and to the "mission papers" issued from time 


to time by the Seabury Mission. He had personal knowledge 
of the institutions from 1858. — Rev. George C. Tanner, D. D. 


Two of the men who were conspicuous among the founders 
of Faribault were instrumental in making it notable as an educa- 
tional center of national reputation. The fame of Bishop Whip- 
ple was almost world wide, and Shattuck especially, of the man- 
kinds of work he inaugurated, is known in every part of our 
own land and abroad. Wherever they and Shattuck are known, 
Faribault is known. No men have been identified with it who 
are deserving of more gratitude for what they did directly and 
indirectly in its early days for the prominence and to the credit 
of Faribault than Bishop Whipple and Dr. Breck. 

In point of time, the name of James Lloyd Breck is first in 
the annals of the church and of education in Faribault. He was 
a pioneer in territorial days, having come to St. Paul in 1851 ; 
thence to Gull Lake as a missionary to the Indians until 
1857; and to Faribault to found a mission, and with it a parish 
school, in 1858. The former developed into the cathedral parish; 
the latter was continued as a part of the mission and was largely 
supported by it until 1868. Out of it grew all the church schools. 
Dr. Breck did not remain to see much of this marvelous growth, 
but indirectly it was the result of his pioneer work. It was this 
feeble beginning and his influence, that turned the attention of 
Bishop Whipple to Faribault and convinced him this was the 
strategic point at which to begin his great work. For the bishop, 
no less than Dr. Breck, saw the supreme advantage to the great 
Northwest of establishing in its beginning a strong center for 
Christian education. With this in view he at once secured a 
charter for the Bishop Seabury Mission, with ample powers 
for schools of all grades. The first to receive attention was the 
divinity school, but means for its first building were not secured 
until 1864-65. Like all the subsequent buildings for the various 
schools that have clone so much in giving Faribault its fame and 
in building it up, this hall was built with money that was secured 
elsewhere, and as large improvements are still to be made, the 
end is not yet. The location of this building was on the grounds 
now occupied by Shattuck. 

Shortly after, another step leading to the establishment of 
Shattuck was taken, when a few boys from the Twin Cities and 
other points were admitted, to live with the divinity students, 
and they, with others selected from the parish school, to attend 
as daily pupils, were organized into what was called a "grammar 
school." It was put in charge of the Rev. George C. Tanner 



as principal, with James Dobbin and Charles H. Plummer, then 
studying theology, as his assistants. Dr. Breck, as dean of the 
mission and head of the household, resided in Seabury from the 
winter of 1866 to April, 1867, when he resigned and removed to 
California. Professor Tanner at the same time took charge of 
the parish in Owatonna. Meantime the bishop's plans were 
matured and greatly expanded. He had been impressed during 
a visit to England by the remarkable history and influence on 
national affairs of the ancient schools that had been founded and 
endowed centuries before — Winchester as far back as the year 
1387, Eton in 1440. Rugby in 1567, Harrow in 1571. The 
efficiency of these schools in training the character of boys 
appeared to him as one of the best features in English life. 
It gave him the keynote to the character of the institution he 
desired to found in Minnesota for the training of boys so long 
as the state exists. With the conviction that what was done so 
successfully in the earlier days of England's civilization can be 
done now, he came home with the faith and courage to under- 
take it, although he was utterly without means with which to 
build so great a work. The surprising thing is that the plan 
he had formulated though not worked out in detail, as that had 
to be done later by the one who would be charged with the 
responsibility of developing and building it up, yet gave him such 
a clear vision of what Shattuck is and is yet to be. It was a tre- 
mendous responsibility to lay on a young man inexperienced 
in such work and with no assurance of the financial help that 
would be necessary. Nothing but the keen sense of duty which 
the long continued urging of the bishop and his optimism awak- 
ened led the present head of the school to devote his life to 
building it up. 

This new organization and management began in April, 
1867. It was so poor the beginning could only be made by its 
continuing to live in Seabury with the divinity students. On 
Thanksgiving day, 1872, Seabury hall was burned, and the divin- 
ity school was then removed to its present site. Meantime a 
building had been erected in 1868-69 for the increasing needs 
of the boys' school, so the separation was more easily made. 
This served for a time both as a schoolroom building and dormi- 
tory, with the dining-room and kitchen in the basement. By 
far the largest contribution for it having been made by George 
C. Shattuck, M. D., of Boston, in recognition of this and other 
benefactions to the bishop's work the building was named in his 
honor "Shattuck hall." As it was the main building for some 
time and no official action was taken in the matter of a name 
until it was separately incorporated thirty-six years later as 
"Shattuck School," this name naturally clung to the school as 


the successive buildings were added. Within two years the 
growth in numbers making it necessary to provide for the school 
work outside this hall, a frame building was erected. This was 
converted afterward into the dormitory now known as "The 
Lodge," when Shumway hall was built in 1887. 

In 1870-71 Bishop Whipple spent the winter in France, at the 
same hotel with Mrs. Augusta M. Shumway, of Chicago. The 
school had begun to show signs of a degree of success that 
confirmed the bishop's hope of its becoming one of the perma- 
nent institutions of the great Northwest, and he talked with 
such enthusiasm about his plans as to excite a lively interest in 
her mind. This led her to offer him $10,000 for a chapel as a 
memorial of her little daughter. The amount was ultimately 
increased to nearly $30,000. It led to her becoming by far the 
largest benefactor of the school up to the date of this sketch. 
The chapel was consecrated in September, 1872, and was at the 
time one of the notable buildings in the state. It is an interest- 
ing fact that its doors have not been locked for thirty-seven 

The burning of Seabury had made necessary an additional 
dormitory, which need was supplied by the erection in 1873 of 
Whipple hall, named in honor of Bishop Whipple. With the ex- 
ception of the cottages for Professor Whitney and the command- 
ant, and a comparatively small drill hall and gymnasium in 1880, 
no further building was possible for upwards of twelve years. 
The gymnasium was burned in 1893, and the insurance money 
of $15,000 was applied to the erection of the basement story of 
a building to replace it. For the want of means this room had 
to serve as the drill room fifteen years, when the walls were 
enlarged and made the foundation of the present splendid S. S. 
Johnson memorial. This interval was a period of waiting in 
the expansion of the school, while the system was being per- 
fected and strengthened fur the great and permanent growth 
so soon in follow. Unknown and silent influences were at work 
that were destined to do more than anything \ et t" lift the school 
to the high plane on which it would find its destiny. Although 
living a so great distance, her home being in Cincinnati. Mrs. 
Shumway's interest was constantly increasing. Every summer 
that she was not traveling abroad found her and her daughter 
here at commencement. Her last visit was in 1884. Two 
months later she was fatally injured by a fall from a mountain 
wagon in Colorado. Greatly to the surprise of the bishop ami 
rector, it then developed that she hail rewritten her will a year 
before, and provided a bequest of $200,000 for the benefit of 
Shattuck. It was to be divided between a building as a memorial 
of her husband and the endowment of a fund to assist poor boys 


to enjoy the advantages of the school. The portion of her estate 
that was available for this bequest realized about $170,000, of 
which $88,000 was placed at interest and the remainder devoted 
to the erection of Shumway hall. 

Immediately on the completion of this noble building the 
architect was set at work on plans for a new dining-room and 
dormitory. With these plans in hand, Bishop Whipple, during 
a visit to England, interested Junius S. Morgan, of London, 
and received from him a gift of $50,000 for its erection. The 
plans having been prepared, the building was begun at once and 
was completed for the opening of the term in September, 1889. 
In a distressing accident the donor was killed by being thrown 
from a carriage shortly before its completion, so that Morgan 
hall became his memorial. During its erection the rector re- 
ceived funds from Mrs. J. S. Smyser for the adjoining building — 
the Smyser memorial — in memory of her son, Harry B. Smyser, 
a former cadet. Then came another cessation in building extend- 
ing over several years. In 1905 a plan long contemplated of 
severing the corporate relations of Seabury and Shattuck was 
brought about and a new board of trustees was formed and 
incorporated under the name of "Shattuck School." This cor- 
poration received from the Bishop Seabury Mission a net prop- 
erty of nearly $500,000 which had been accumulated under its 
management, for the benefit of Shattuck. To commemorate 
this important event in its history, it was proposed by the alumni 
members of the board, who numbered five of the nine trustees, 
that plans be prepared for a gymnasium and office building, and 
an effort be made by them to secure funds for it from the old 
boys and patrons as their gift to the new corporation. While 
the canvass for funds was at the time only partially successful, 
owing to the general depression in business, it was sufficiently 
so, in view of the pressing need for the building, to warrant its 
completion. The cost, including the connecting corridor to Shum- 
way hall, was $60,000. It is absolutely fireproof and sanitary, 
with the swimming pool, shower baths and toilet rooms finished 
throughout in tile and marble, and the gymnasium and office 
equipped with every appliance desired. The upper story pro- 
vides two class rooms and sleeping rooms for boys. It is one 
of the most solidly built buildings in the state, and by the dura- 
bility of all the materials used in its construction, is a contribu- 
tion of its donors to the physical training and equipment of 
boys for generations to come. 

While work on this was still going on a proposition was 
received from the widow and two sons (graduates) of the late 
Samuel S. Johnson, of California, to provide funds to make 
the proposed armory and library a memorial of him. These 


funds were immediately available, and the building was erected 
in 1907-08. It is a noble building, with scarcely an equal for its 
purpose in any of the schools, and is an honor to the school and 
the city as well as to the man whose name it perpetuates. It 
contains a drill hall and indoor earthen athletic court and run- 
ning track of magnificent proportions, also a beautiful reading 
room and library, and other rooms of great value. For con- 
venience, it is closely connected with the gymnasium, and 
through it, with the school building and dining room, by a stone 
and concrete corridor. The total cost of this improvement and 
furnishing is upwards of $100,000. Together with the gymna- 
sium building, it marks Shattuck in its physical appointments, 
as it already was in rank and reputation, as one of the foremost 
boarding schools for boys in America. Other buildings and 
improvements for which plans are in preparation will make it 
more than ever an object of pride to the city and county and 
an honor to the state. Chief among the contributions to be 
sought for its further advancement is the accumulation of an 
endowment fund, which ought to reach a half million dollars, 
to be invested for a permanent, fixed income. Such a fund added 
to the annual earnings from pupils will raise it to the highest 
rank of secondary schools, will greatly increase its ability to 
assist poor and worthy boys to obtain the coveted education, 
will largely increase its financial and civic value to this com- 
munity, and will give it the same guaranty of permanence for 
the benefit of the boys of unnumbered generations as was given 
by the endowments of the old English schools more than 300 
and 500 years ago. The early completion of these large plans 
is worthy a civic pride that appeals for the co-operation of local 
citizens with the managers of the school, who have brought in 
from abroad and expended here such splendid sums of money 
to raise Shattuck to its present enviable position. 

By this far-reaching policy of building for the future, the 
founders and builders are preparing it to contribute, as the years 
and generations go by. to the increase and the betterment of 
the local prosperity infinitely more than anyone is yet able to 
comprehend. There is no other enterprise that will be of so 
great and varied importance. This purpose of working for 
posterity justifies the greatly increased cost of the later build- 
ings, in making them so solid and lasting by the substitution of 
steel and concrete and tile for less durable material. It makes 
the prosperity of Shattuck and the increase of funds for build- 
ing and for its annual maintenance a matter of practical interest 
and value to the public. It concerns every business man and 
citizen in and about Faribault. What helps the school helps the 
town; for it is put here to stay. It can never move elsewhere 



as any commercial business in town can. In contrast with it 
only a few years will elapse, till one can go up and down the 
streets, and not find one business in the hands of the men or the 
firms that control it today. Men die, and their places are taken 
by others. Not so with the corporation, or its business, or the 
names of the men and women whose donations to its building 
or its endowment funds, help add to its increasing advantages, 
and the permanence of its usefulness. The names of most people 
pass into oblivion. The names of the benefactors of Shattuck 
will be preserved for all time in the archives, and in the names 
and usefulness of the buildings or endowments. It is one of 
the surest ways of doing good that will last. It gives each donor 
as strong a guaranty as one can have, that so much at least 
of his or her estate as is entrusted to this corporation, will not 
be dissipated in a generation or two as estates generally are. 
It is put in a trust under the guardianship of the law of the 
state; its income, or the improvement made by it, is certain to 
be used perpetually according to the recorded will of the donor, 
without being diverted to other objects. It opens a way for 
any one interested in the future of his own city, to make an 
investment in the interest of education, that will contribute in 
all the years to come to the benefit and credit of Faribault, while 
exerting a long-lasting influence on the country at large, through 
the multitude of boys who will go out from its walls better and 
more useful men. — James Dobbin. 


Though so much smaller, it being but one-fifth the size 
numerically as Shattuck School, this also is an attractive and 
valuable asset financially and otherwise of Faribault. It is 
closely allied to Shattuck as being preparatory to it, and is in- 
directly due to the same influences. The rector had long been 
profoundly impressed by the fact that there was an increasing 
demand, and would be an assured support, for the primary 
boarding school that should at the same time be a real home 
for boys who are too young for admission to Shattuck. He was 
often urged to take children of eight, nine and ten years who 
were motherless, and often under circumstances that made a 
refusal a real hardship to them and the father. When he could 
find no one interested in establishing such a school where the 
little fellows could live by themselves, he and Mrs. Dobbin 
decided to do it by devoting their home to this purpose. It was 
an idea! place for it, and at just the right distance from Shat- 
tuck to work to the best advantages as a preparatory depart- 
ment. In furtherance of their plans they made the necessary 


alterations and addition to the house in 1901, and inviting F. E. 
Jenkins to give up his position in Shattuck and assume the 
charge of and conduct the school, with Mrs. Jenkins as the 
house mother, they again took up their own residence in Shat- 

This idea of a school conducted as a family solely for boys 
from eight to eleven or twelve years of age, at once enlisted 
public interest and approval. The peculiar fitness of those 
placed in charge of it was universally recognized, and its success 
was assured before it began. The maximum intended was 
reached at the opening of the second year. After that there 
was hardly a year that applications were not received which had 
to be held over or declined for the want of room. It was so 
evident it was filling a unique educational want, and that there 
was no question there will always be such a need, the founders 
and owners decided in 1909 to incorporate it under the Minne- 
sota law for the government of educational institutions, so as 
to provide for handing it down to posterity. They gave it the 
name of St. James School. 


While this school was never officially a part of the Seabury 
mission, it has nevertheless from its beginning been closely 
allied in spirit with the Seabury mission, the Seabury Divinity 
School, and Shattuck school, the same ideal of Christian life and 
service animating all of these institutions, and the fostering 
care of Bishop Whipple being over all. 

St. Mary's Hall is a school for girls founded by Bishop 
Whipple in 1866. This school was the bishop's own venture of 
faith and was begun in his own home. Its object then, as now 
was the training of Christian women. With the bishop in this 
good work were associated his wife, Mrs. Cornelia Whipple, 
who was the house mother, and his brother, the Rev. George 
B. Whipple, who was chaplain for many years. Mr. Whipple 
was succeeded by the Rev. E. Steele Peake who, for a long 
term, also rendered faithful service. Much of the success of 
the school in those early days was due to the efficient principal, 
Miss Sarah P. Darlington, daughter of Dr. Darlington, a 
scientist of Philadelphia, who devoted herself to the interests 
of Saint Maw's from the time of its opening until her death in 
1881. Of her. Bishop Whipple once wrote "Her ripe scholar- 
ship, wise forethought, and Christian devotion, helped greatly 
to place St. Maii'-, among the foremost schools of the land." 
In later years the Rt. Rev. Mahlon X. Gilbert, the much beloved 
coadjutor, contributed his ardent assistance to the upbuilding of 




the school. The citizens of Faribault generally gave to Bishop 
Whipple their interest and aid in promoting this his great work. 
Among many others whose benefactions to the school will be 
held long in remembrance were the Hon. Gordon E. Cole, Judge 

E. T. Wilder and Hon. H. T. Wells. In 1883 the school was 
moved into the commodious, home-like building on the hill 
overlooking the town. St. Mary's of today, like the school of 
the early days, strives to fulfill the ideals and standards of its 
beloved founder in developing in the girls committed to its 
care every womanly quality. The corps of teachers is excellent. 
The advantages in music and art are unexcelled. The school 
is co-operative with western universities and prepares for eastern 

The officers of the school at present are as follows : Rt. Rev. 
Samuel Cook Edsall, D. D., LL. D., rector; Miss Caroline 
Wright Eells, principal. The members of the board of trustees 
are: The Rt. Rev. S. C. Edsall, D. D., LL. D., president; the 
Rev. G. C. Tanner, D. D., secretary ; J. R. Smith, treasurer ; the 
Rt. Rev. J. D. Morrison, D. D., LL. D., ex-officio; Mr. J. R. 
VanDerlip, Mr. A. E. Haven, the Rev. Theodore Sedgwick, Mr. 

F. M. Forman, Mrs. Henry B. Whipple, Miss Caroline Wright 

The first class was graduated in 1870 and consisted of Alice 

G. Kerfoot and Emma L. Winkley. 

The Minnesota Historical Society collections contain the 
following in regard to this school : 

"Seeing the need for a school for girls which should so com- 
bine refining influences with a high degree of culture and scholar- 
ship as to preclude the necessity of sending daughters farther 
from home, in 1866 Bishop Whipple decided to open a school 
in his own house. This was wholly a private enterprise. The 
financial burden was borne by the Bishop alone. Mrs. Whipple 
was the house-mother. The school opened November 1, 1866, 
with thirty-three pupils, under three teachers. Miss S. P. Darl- 
ington, a daughter of Dr. Darlington, of Pennsylvania, who had 
come to Minnesota for her health, was the first principal. She 
was a rare woman in the qualities which go to make up the suc- 
cessful head of a boarding school. With the exception of one 
year, she continued to hold this position until her death in 1881. 
'Thoroughly identified with the interests of the school, pure of 
heart, gentle by impulse, refined by nature, superior in intellect, 
upright in example and diligent in all things,' she impressed her 
character upon St. Mary's hall, and her influence for good is still 
felt, while her name is revered for all that is excellent in true 

"From 1866 to 1882 St. Mary's hall was carried on beneath 


the bishop's own roof and under his own eye and that of his 
excellent wife. This period embraces nearly one-half of the life 
of the school, during which the daughters of St. Mary's were 
guided by his loving advice and ministrations. Among those who 
assisted the Bishop was Robert M. Mason, of Boston, who visited 
Faribault, looked over the plans of the schools and was a gen- 
erous helper in rearing St. Mary's hall. 

"It is due the memory of the bishop to put on record his 
own words in regard to St. Mary's: 'Ours will never be a 
fashionable school, where the daughters of the rich can gain a 
few showy accomplishments. We believe in honest work, in 
broad foundations on which may be reared the completeness of 
the finished temple. In a life hallowed by daily prayer we 
shall try to train up our daughters for the blessedness of a life 
of usefulness here and the joy and bliss of heaven hereafter.' 

"The graceful tribute which the bishop paid to those under 
him is one of the delightful traits of his personal character. 
Speaking of the Rev. Mills, the first chaplain of St. Mary's 
hall, he uses words no less loving than he used in memory of his 
own brother: 'Providence sent us the right man for a chaplain, 
to whom St. Mary's hall is indebted for the great success it has 
attained.' And again, of Miss Darlington he said: 'It was her 
ripe forethought and Christian devotion which placed our ven- 
ture of faith among the foremost schools of the land.' And 
again: 'God mercifully prolonged her life until the childhood 
of her work was passed and she saw in it the beauty of cultured 
womanhood.' Indeed it was this charm of simplicity with which 
the bishop often put aside any glory which might come to him 
that so added to the beauty of his character and won for him the 
enthusiasm of those who labored for him and with him and 
under him, an enthusiasm so ardent and glowing that for many 
years the clergy in their hard and trying fields of labor made 
no changes, but bore poverty and penury because they loved 
their bishop." 





Town Proprietors— Town Plat — Early Additions— First Build- 
ings — Pioneer Events — Early Descriptions — Some Pioneers 
— Mystery of Metropolisville — Faribault Township — Fari- 
bault in 1872— Luke Hulett. 

The earliest history of the city of Faribault, the coming of 
the Faribaults, the arrival of the earliest settlers, and incidents 
of the early days, have been related elsewhere. 

The first proprietors of what was then known as the "old 
town" of Faribault, were Alexander Faribault, Luke Hulett, 
Walter Morris, H. H. Sibley, attorney for F. B. Sibley; and 
afterwards came the names of J. W. North, Porter Nutting, J. 
H. Mills, R. Sherwood, Senator Samuel Walcott; and in the 
fall of 1855 Gen. James Shields, of Mexican war fame. He pur- 
chased an interest in the town site, and became the agent and 
attorney for the company, receiving his deed from Judge Chat- 
field, who formerly entered the town according to the act mak- 
ing provisions therefor, on May 20, 1855, and for several years 
General Shields issued titles to all the lots sold. 

In this connection, F. W. Frink has said: "Feb. 16, 1855, 
the plat of the original town was made out and filed for record 
by Alexander Faribault, John W. North, Fred B. Sibley, and 
Porter Nutting, as proprietors. On the eleventh of the follow- 
ing September, the same proprietors, with the exception of Mr. 
North and the addition of James Shields, J. Baufil and Charles 
F. Crehore entered into an agreement with Gen. James Shields, 
giving him power of attorney to sell lots, and make deeds, 
bonds, etc. In consideration of his services he was to receive 
every third lot in the block north of Third street, all blocks 
south of Third street being recognized as the personal prop- 
erty of Alexander Faribault. Dec. 1, Judge Chatfield entered 
280 acres comprising the plat of the original town at the land 
office in Winona as a town site for the use and benefit of the 
occupants thereof, by the authority of an act of congress pro- 
viding for the entry of town sites on government lands. By 
the act of the legislative assembly of the territory of Minnesota, 
passed March 3, 1855, General Shields was authorized to make 



warranty deeds for lots in the town, all previous conveyances 
having been by bond or quit claim." 

The original town, as surveyed and platted by B. Densmore, 
contained 280 acres, but additions were soon made as follows: 
Paquin's, surveyed by C. C. Perkins and recorded December 
7, 1855, and April 16, 1856, eighty acres; Cooper's, surveyed by 
A. H. Bullis, and recorded April 3, 1856, forty acres; McClel- 
land's, surveyed by S. Wade, and recorded April 30, 1856, forty- 
two acres; South Faribault, surveyed by C. C. Perkins, Shields 
and Faribault, proprietors, and recorded May 1. 1856, fifty acres; 
North Faribault, surveyed by A. H. Bullis, F. Faribault, pro- 
prietor, forty acres, making in 1856 a total of 532 acres. All 
the lots were four by ten rods, making one-fourth of an acre 
each, except the business lots, which were two rods shorter. 
In the winter of 1857 the lots were selling at from $500 to $3,000, 
which ought to have been a satisfactory advance on thirty-one 
and one-quarter cents, paid the government a year or two 

The tidal wave, or avalanche, whichever is most appropriate 
to designate an oncoming of humanity, and wealth, was in 
the spring and summer of 1856, for at the beginning of that 
period there was not a score of buildings in town, while in the 
fall there were more than 250, and the population had swelled 
to 1,500 or more. There were in the town early in 1857, twenty- 
three stores, four good hotels, five w^agon shops, with black- 
smith and shoe maker shops, two livery stables, two meat mar- 
kets, and three steam mills, and surrounded by a rich country, 
fast filling up, its growth and prosperity was an assurance which 
has been well realized. 

In the winter of 1850. Faribault had a literary association. 
and published a paper called "The Pioneer." Goods at first had 
to be hauled from Hastings, making a round trip of about 140 
miles, although in some seasons of the year supplies were landed 
on the Mississippi at Reed's Landing, at the foot of Lake Pepin. 
The first frame building put up here was by Alexander 
Faribault, quite a good one and in striking contrast with the log 
cabins, hovels and shanties which were extemporized by the 
pioneers on their first arrival, to meet the imperative demands 
for shelter. The cost of this first building was $4,000. The 
lumber for its construction was brought from St. Paul; a part 
of it was left on the road, as the team was unable to get through 
with such a load, and this was burned by a prairie fire. This 
building is still standing. The next frame was erected by the 
Messrs. Barnard, at a cost of $1,000, which was afterwards oc- 
cupied by J. 11. Mills. This was in August, 1855. and during 
that season quite a number of others went up. The postoffice. 


i RUMP H W.I.. i'M.'ll: VULT 


which was kept by E. J. Crump, the deputy, was opposite where 
the Arlington House stands. 

At first there was a struggle between the two ends of the 
village, the south and the north. Mr. Faribault lived at the 
south, and the French Canadian settlement was at the north 
end, and in any contest where there was a vote on the question, 
the countrymen of Mr. Faribault would go with him, apparently 
against their own interest. Mr. Crump had a pre-emption claim 
which he was induced to waive in consideration of the com- 
pany's giving him the entire block upon which the Arlington 
House stands. 

General Shields had several thousand dollars, and procuring 
a pair of horses and a carriage, he traveled all over this country, 
finally bringing up in Shieldsville, where he was getting quite 
a settlement when Mr. Faribault offered him such liberal in- 
ducements to act for the townsite company, that he at once 
came here. The trouble as to the ownership, and the adjust- 
ment of the rival pre-emption claims was considerable, but the 
general went to Washington where his experience in the land 
office enabled him to secure a clear title. 

One of the first meetings for religious instruction was in 
April, 1854, in the grove near Luke Hulett's, north of the 
bridge, on the Solomon Atherton place, by an itinerant evangel- 
ist. The audience was made up mostly of the Wapakoota 
Dakotas, who were here in considerable numbers. The first 
denominational service was by Jonathan Morris, a followed of 
Alexander Campbell. 

The village lots were surveyed in April, 1854, and there 
were five claims covering the town at that time. A. Faribault 
had the upper claim ; J. B. Faribault, the father of Alexander, 
had another; N. Paquin had the lower part of the town. 

It was found that under the pre-emption law, town sites 
could be laid out in advance of the land sale, and so it was ar- 
ranged to lay out the town at once, and the west, or prairie 
half, was surveyed and platted, and filed in the recorder's office 
at Mendota, in the name of A. Faribault, H. H. Sibley, Walter 
Morris, and Luke Hulett. This survey was subsequently can- 
celled, and, under the auspices of J. B. North, a re-survey was 
made in the spring of 1855. This became permanent. In the 
fullness of time, Judge Chatfield was induced to become the 
trustee ; the land of General Sibley was pre-empted, and through 
the paramount influence of Gen. James Shields, who, as men- 
tioned elsewhere, had appeared upon the scene, the title was 
finally vested so as to be lasting. 

In the fall of 1857, at the time of that financial depression, 
Faribault had arrived at a condition of prosperity which was 


most remarkable, and it is certain that all who were here at that 
time should be designated as old settlers, and so a sketch of 
the city, written by R. A. Mott for his paper, is reproduced. 
"But one church now stands in this place, viz., the Congrega- 
tional. A fine church, built by the Catholics, was burned last 
fall. In addition, Baptist, Methodist, Episcopal, and Lutheran 
organizations exist, stated preaching having been secured to 
each. Our merchants are all well stocked, and they are gen- 
erally as fine dealers as ever stood behind the counter. Our 
landloards are all gentlemn, and spare no pains to make travelers 
at home. Our mechanics have increased, greatly, their facil- 
ities for doing good work. Our places of amusement would 
lose their objectionable features if intoxicating drinks could be 
banished from their precincts. We would urge eastern mechanics 
and capitalists, who feel like breaking out into the free North- 
west, to grow up with it, to pay us a visit n<xt spring. We 
want men with bronzed faces and horney hands; men and 
women who can cheerfully lock arms with toil. We promise 
you that toil will here be richly remunerated. We are, now 
especially, in need of plough, reaper, and mover factories, and a 
pair of jolly coopers." 

One schoolhouse has been erected at a cost of $2,000. It is 
now occupied by two teachers. Another school is sustained 
in a commodious hall. These teachers have now under their 
tuition about 125 pupils. A brass band, a string band, a vocal 
club, a singing school, a .Mason's and Odd Fellow's lodge arc 
all in successful existence. Our mail service has been decreased 
since the close of summer, but we still have fifteen arrivals and 
eighteen departures weekly. We have been unable to obtain 
the last census report, but the enumeration made by the assessor 
last June gave this town a population of 1683. It is now re- 
ported at over 2.000. By actual count there were, some time 
since, over 250 buildings in the place. Faribault has become 
the center of trade for a large >ection of country, of the ex- 
tension of which some idea can be formed from a list of business 
establishments which we now proceed to give: There are four 
large houses dealing exclusively in hardware. Three heavy 
grocery stores, three clothing and furnishing stores, three meat 
and provision market--. two drug stores, two first-class restaur- 
ants, two furniture stores and cabinet shops, three livery stables, 
three blacksmith shops, which employ eighl hands, one harness 
shop, two boot and shoe Mores, one wagon and sleigh shop, one 
broom factory, one grist-mill, with three more within three 
miles, two saw-mills, with seven more within three miles, one 

ning-mill, one billiard saloon, two bowling alleys, one race 
( ourse. 


So far as our memory serves, the following list comprises 
the business men of the place: Town proprietors — Shields & 
McCutcheon, A. Faribault, J. Cooper, H. McClelland, N. Paquin, 
A. Faribault, Turner & Batchelder. Clergymen— L. Armsby, 
T. R. Cressey, J. H. White. Physicians — Bemis, Leighton, 
Burnhans, Denison, Stevens, and Turner. Dentistry — Dr. 
Stevens and Dr. Biggs. Provision markets — M. Cole, C. T. 
Winans, Nutting & Dickinson. Restaurants — C. M. Mispaugh, 
J. & A. Manheim. Drug stores — Wheeler & Thayer, Stevens 
& Thayer. Furniture stores — Hill & Brockway, Wandell & 
Worlin. Millinery— Mrs. L. Clement, Mrs. O. M. Crandall. 
Liveries, D. Smith & Co., T. Smith. Jewelry — J. L. Wilcox & 
Co. Harness shop — E. C. Hinde. Wagon shop— J. D. Denison. 
Architects and Builders — Hink & Newcomb, Davison & dem- 
ons, R. W. Russ, A. & J. Nutting. Broom factory — Misener & 
Brother. Shingle-mill — J. M. White. Saw-mills — Gibson & Co., 
H. Riedell. Grist-mill— Gibson & Co. Planing-mill — Clark & 
Weld. Shoe shop— D. O'Brien. Teachers— L. A. Fish, Miss 
Parish, Sarah Fisk. Landlords — Barron House, H. E. Barron ; 
National, E. D. Gifford ; Faribault House, T. Nutting. Bankers 
and land agents — Shields & McCutcheon, G. W. Boardman & 
Co., H. Wilson & Co., Mcllrath, Cole & Co., L. S. Pease & Co. 
Attorneys and counselors at law — Batchelder & Buckham, Cole 
& Raymond, Davis & Tanner, Berry & Perkins, H. W. Lamber- 
ton, O. A. Dalrymple, C. Williams, G. E. Skinner. Surveyors — 
A. H. Bullis, R. H. L. Jewett, G. F. Batchelder. Merchants- 
General Variety— Tower & Brother, J. A. Moore, J. H. Mills 
& Son, Mr. McGreavy, Van Brunt & Misener, Fuller & Smith, 
J. H. Winter. D. Munch. Hardware— C. T. Hinde & Co., Cot- 
trell & Brother, T. H. Loyhed, Cooper & Renwick. Groceries — 
Chaffee & Berry, F. B. Nason & Co., Mr. Barley. Clothing— 
W. S. Eastman, Raunecker & Hartman, P. B. Crosby & Co. 

The following from the "Herald" will also give an idea of 
the improvements of 1857: "It is truly gratifying to take a view 
of the improvements which have been effected in our place 
during the past year. In nothing is this advance more apparent 
than in the erection of new buildings. The building of the 
past year has been altogether of a different and superior char- 
acter from that which preceded it. In place of pre-emption 
shanties which constituted many of those before numbered, we 
have now the stately edifice from two to four stories in height. 
The buildings erected within the last year would probably reach 
in number one hundred and fifty, the most noticeable of these 
are as follows : Residence of A. Faribault on a sightly bluff 
over the river, costing about $4.000 ; the beautiful residence of 
James Tower at a cost of $2,500; the residence of General 


Shields, J. Cooper, N. Paquin, H. McClelland. F. Faribault, Rev. 
L. Armsby, S. Barnard, Mr. Humphrey, H. Ri^dell, J. Gibson, 
Messrs. Decker, Alby, Lines, Whipple, etc., at an average of 
about $2,000 each. The following among the most important 
business erections: Store by M. Cook, 24x40; Cottrell & Co., 
24x50; A. Blodgett, hall and billiard saloon at an average of 
$2,500; store and hall by Faribault & Co.; restaurant by Mills- 
paugh; bank by J. A. Moore; store by J. H. Mills; drug store 
by Stevens & Thayer; receiver's office by J. B. Cooper; store 
by Mr. Merrill. All of these new buildings are two stories and 
cost about $2,000 each. A number of creditable one-story build- 
ings for offices, banks, stores, etc., have been erected. A number 
of fine buildings show themselves on Paquin's addition, among 
which we notice one by I. H. Craig, 22x45. three stories high, 
for store or hotel ; F. Craig has built two, one 16x36, the other 
19x36, both two stories ; two stores, one by Fredette and one by 
Langeuin, both 20x40, two stories. We cannot report in full, 
suffice it to say that the amount expended in private building 
the past year cannot fall short of $100,000. In addition our 
commissioners have erected an office and jail at an expense of 
about $5,000. The school trustees have built a schoolhouse 
costing about $2,000. The Congregational church has been 
enlarged and a bell procured. Three bridges have been built 
across Straight river, and one across the Cannon. A pleasant 
and commodious cemetery has been laid out, and many other 
improvements which give great satisfaction to the citizens of 
Faribault who love their homes." 

Among the early prominent settlers of Faribault were : O. 
F. Perkins, J. W. North, Dr. Charles Jewett, J. W. Humphrey, 
John M. Berry, George W. Batchelder, Thos. C. Buckham. J. 
C. and J. R. Parshall, H. E. Barron, H. R. L. Jewett. Capt. 
E. H. Cutis, H. M. Matteson, II. \Y. Dike. Henry Clay Lowell, 
C. L. Lowell. F. W. Frink, George W. Tower. R. A. Mott. 

H. M. Matteson and J. R. Parshall came here in 1854: Levi 
Nutting, James Shouts. •;. S. Woodruff, E. X. Leavens in 1855; 
W. II. Stevens, John Mullin, J. I'.. Wheeler. Lyman Tuttle, Wil- 
liam McGinnis, A. Mortenson, F. <i. Stevens, George W. Newell, 
and T. H. Loyhed came in 1865. 

Among other old settlers were: C. C. Perkins, Michael 
Cook and Thomas Carpenter. 

The Mystery of Metropolisville. Edward Eggleston, the 
famous author, was in Rice comity in 1855. and the scene of 
"The Mysterj of Metropolisville" is supposedly laid in Cannon 
City, many of the names in the book being clever take-offs on 
well known names in Rice county. On this subject, F. W. Frink 
has said: "In the summer of 1855 the author of the 'Hoosier 


School Master.' 'Mystery of Metropolisville' and kindred works 
was taking pictures in Faribault with Amos Wattles — whom 
some of our old settlers will remember — week days and preach- 
ing the gospel according to the Methodists on Sundays in Cannon 
City. Before this young preacher left this vicinity a circum- 
stance occurred that was the foundation for a story which he has 
immortalized in one of his novels. Some of our oldest citizens 
may remember a long tall copy in the flesh of 'Uncle Sam,' as, 
caricatured, named Dave McCorn ; further identified as the 
owner of the finest span of Morgans ever seen in Faribault. 
Dave boarded at the Barron House, in the office of which the 
young bloods of the town made nightly resort, and was the butt 
of many jokes before they became fully acquainted, as he looked 
and acted decidedly verdant. One night when there was a full 
meeting of these youngsters, one of them asked Dave if he had 
heard of the offer Mr. Faribault had made of $10,000 to any 
decent white man who would marry one of his daughters. 
Dave replied that he hadn't heard of it but as it was right into 
his hand he would go and see about it, and left ostensibly to 
interview his prospective father-in-law. After a waiting of an 
hour or more expecting every moment to hear that Dave had 
been shown the door if not kicked out of it for his impudence, 
he made his appearance and reported progress. He said: 'We 
got along first rate and agreed in every particular until just at 
the last Mr. Faribault insisted that the children should be 
brought up in the Catholic faith, and I told him I'd be d — d if 
I could stand that, and so the deal was off.' The young fellows 
saw that they were sold, for their intended victim never went 
near Mr. Faribault but was snugly ensconced in a neighboring 
store all the time they had been waiting expecting, as one of 
them expressed it, to have a 'heap of fun with a greenhorn.' It 
is true that the 'Mystery of Metropolisville' makes no pretense 
to historical accuracy, yet it is so truthful in its representations 
of many incidents and presents so many accurate pen portraits of 
well known men of the time that the pages devoted to 'Peri- 
tault, the Indian trader' may be well supposed to give the char- 
acteristics of Alexander Faribault, the only 'Indian trader' in 
the vicinity. Yet the story as told in the book is a libel on as 
affectionate a father as I ever knew, and had no other foundation 
than is here related. I may be accused of needlessly reviving 
an old story but there is this excuse : The 'Mystery of Metrop- 
olisville' is still to be found in public libraries, and only a few 
years ago a correspondent of one of the twin city dailies re- 
hearsed this old storv as a literal truth." 


The Township of Faribault was organized May 11, 1858. 
On motion of A. J. Tanner, Geo. W. Batchelder was elected 
chairman by acclamation, Solon C. Gilmore was selected as 
moderator, and J. Ezra Buck, clerk. A committee was appointed 
to ascertain the amount needed to defray expenses for town 
purposes. This committee consisted of J. B. Cooper, L. Nutting, 
G. W. Batchelder, M. Cook, C. Wheeler. The town was divided 
into road districts with overseers as follows: North Faribault. 
Geo. H. Farrar; South Faribault, M. Cole; East Prairieville, 
G. W. rope. The election resulted as follows: Supervisors, G. 
W. Batchelder, chairman; Geo. F. Pettit, Norbert Paquin ; town 
clerk, M. C. Peltier; collector, E. W. Leavens; assessor, E. C. 
Hind; overseer of the poor, E. D. Gifford ; justices of the peace, 
W. W. Owen, W. B. Leach; constables, E. N. Leavens, T. L. 
De Lancy. August 4, E. C. Houck was appointed assessor in 
place of E. C. Hind, and E. J. Crump overseer of the poor in 
place of E. D. Gifford. September 9, E. J. Crump was appointed 
overseer of road district No. 1, in place of G. H. Farrar. Sep- 
tember 14, Geo. C. Albee was appointed supervisor in place of 
G. F. Pettit. October 11, Geo. M. Gilmore was appointed 
supervisor in place of Geo. W. Batchelder. November 20, R. 

A. Molt was appointed justice of the peace in place of William 

B. Leach. 

The last annual town meeting of the old township of Fari- 
bault was held at Firemen's Hall, March 12, 1872. The meet- 
ing was called to order by O. H. Wily, town clerk pro tern. The 
election resulted as follows : Supervisors, S. C. Dunham, L. C. 
Ingram, J. D. Green; clerk, II. P. Sime; treasurer, H. C. Pres- 
cott ; assessors, Isaac Plumer. Henry Dunham; justices, J. B. 
Quinn, John Leo, O. F. Perkins. 


Faribault previous to its incorporation in 1872 was exceed- 
ingly primitive in its government. There were few sidewalks 
in town, outside "f the business portion, and those consisted 
for the most part of two planks laid lengthwise about a fool 
apart. Stock of all kinds ran at large and there was a strong 
opposition to any radical change. The county had no adequate 
court house and no jail of any account. The county building 
was a one story two-room brick building, about 10x16 Feet on 
the ground, on the corner of Third street and Second avenue, 
where' the treasurer and recorder, the auditor and the clerk of 
court kept their offices. The central school house had been 
built at a cost of over $30,000, the third Boor being used as a 


public hall. There were also four small, outside primary school 
buildings. The Episcopal cathedral had been built, so also the 
Catholic church of the Immaculate Conception, the Congrega- 
tional, Presbyterian, and Baptist churches as they now stand. 
The schools of the Bishop Seabury mission, and St. Mary's hall 
had been organized, but the only building now occupied which 
had been erected is Shattuck hall. The state school for deaf 
mutes and the blind occupied together the south wing of the 
present main building of the present school for the deaf. Fari- 
bault had suffered from the bridge fever and its fires had not 
dimmed when the city was organized. Already the First, Second, 
Eighth and Fourteenth street bridges had been erected over 
Straight river and two over the Cannon, but the bridge notion 
did not subside until 1887, when the Third street was put in 
and a cut made through the bluff to permit approach from the 
east side. Since then other bridges have been erected. The 
principal hotels were the Barron house, a two story wooden 
building at the corner of First street and Central avenue, with 
a substantial stone three story addition em the north. The 
Arlington house, or rather the part of it north of the south wing, 
and a three-story stone building now occupied by the Security 
bank, were erected in 1871, the former by Joseph D. Green and 
the latter by F. A. Theopold. The United States hotel, the 
present Superior house, a substantial three-story stone and brick 
building, had been previously erected and used as a hotel by 
Jacob Stehly. There were a few other substantial brick and 
stone buildings in the city, the Straight River mill and the Ken- 
dall mill, a three-story stone building on Central avenue erected 
by Geo. F. Batchelder, the Fleckenstein stone block corner of 
Central avenue and Third street, the Mee Brothers building 
and the stores occupied by Schulein's clothing store, Carpenter 
& Smith, T. H. Loyhed & Son, and the Degan building on Third 
street, the Stocklein building on Central avenue, and a few 
others since destroyed by fire and rebuilt. 

Since 1872, all the public buildings have been erected, with 
the exception of the Central school, the north wing of the state 
school for the deaf, and Shattuck hall. Most of the business 
blocks and homes have also been erected since that date. 

Luke Hulett who came to Faribault in 1853, with his family, 
was perhaps the most prominent of the early settlers. He was 
a native of Rutland county, Vermont, born in 1803. He emi- 
grated to the West when twenty-seven years of age, and resided 
for a time in Ohio, Missouri, Illinois and Wisconsin, where he 
engaged for the most part in farming, but built and operated a 
saw mill on the St. Joe river for a time. When Mr. Hulett set- 
tled in Faribault he brought his wife and seven children, two 


of whom, Mrs. Robert Smith and Mrs. Frank Carrier, live in 
Faribault. The oldest child and only son, John, died while a 
young man. The oldest daughter, Mrs. John Adams, died in 
Missouri. Mrs. Ruel Smith lives in Minneapolis. Mrs. Orlando 
Johnson lives in Medford. Mrs. Emmonds Taylor lives in East 
Prairie. Two children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Hulett in 
Faribault, Mrs. A. C. Miller, who still resides here, was the 
first white child born after the actual settlement of Faribault. 
The youngest child, Ida A., died in childhood. Mr. Hulett was 
a man of wide information and possessed of excellent judgment, 
and naturally became a leader in public affairs. His advice was 
largely sought and freely given. He was liberal in his views, 
heroic in character, and generous in his impulses, and left an 
impress upon his associates which will long be felt in Faribault. 
He died March 18, 1882, and at the age of 79 years. 




^s »v^ 





Extracts From a "Brief History of Faribault" — Old Town Site — 
Appearance of Faribault in 1855 — Early Manufacturing In- 
terests — Location of the County Seat — First Church, School 
and Newspaper — Indian Scares — Denominational Concord — 
Costly Fire — A Few Old Settlers. 

F. W. Frink, in his "Brief History of Faribault," has written 
the following interesting facts : 

February 10, 1855, a survey and plat of the 280 acres, com- 
prising the original town of Faribault having been previously 
made, an agreement by and between John W. North, Porter 
Nutting, F. B. Sibley and Alexander Faribault, as proprietors, 
and John W. North, as agent, was entered into, empowering 
the agent to sell all lots in town north of Third street, reserving 
to Alexander Faribault thirty blocks, being all south of Third 
street as his individual property, and the record of that instru- 
ment marks Faribault's birthday, being the first day of its cor- 
porate existence. Under this agreement, Mr. North was author- 
ized to give away fifteen lots to any person or persons who in 
his judgment would promote the interests of the town. February 
16, power of attorney to execute this agreement was given to 
Mr. North, and recorded. Meanwhile, before any sales were 
made, Mr. North, having founded a town of his own, retired 
from his position as one of Faribault's proprietors and his power 
of attorney was revoked. Gen. James Shields having a short 
time previous located on the shore of the lake now bearing his 
name was induced to take an interest in the new town, and a 
new agreement was made under date of September 10, 1855, by 
and between Alexander Faribault, Porter Nutting, John Banfil, 
James Shields, Fred B. Sibley and Charles T. Crehore, as pro- 
prietors, and General Shields, as agent, by which the agent was 
empowered to sell all lots north of Third street and reserving 
to Mr. Faribault the lots south of Third street as in the previous 
agreement. This agreement gave also every third lot north of 
Third street to General Shields for his services. Power of at- 
torney to carry this agreement into effect was executed Septem- 
ber 11, 1855, and recorded. Under this arrangement, the title 
being yet in the Government, all lots were conveyed by quit 
claim deed up to June 1, 1856. February 16, 1855. a plat and 



survey made for the original proprietors by B. Densmore, was 
filed in the register's office of Dakota county, to which Rice 
county was attached for judicial purposes prior to January 1, 

Let me attempt a pen picture of the scene presented to me in 
April, 1855. I approached the town from the east, coming down 
the hill by the Front street road (now Division street), being 
the only road opened to the ford of Straight river before the 
Cooper ravine road was opened in 1859. Looking across the 
valley, the most conspicuous objects that met my sight were 
numerous scaffoldings elevating by rude pole structures ten or 
twelve feet above the ground the bodies of dead Indians accord- 
ing to the custom of the Sioux to help their departed warriors 
on their way to the happy hunting grounds. All along up and 
down the river were the tepees of the Wa-pe-cou-tas (Wapa- 
kootas), far more numerous than the habitations of the whin- 
man, and the intermingling of tepees, log cabins, frame houses 
just begun, with four or five steam saw mills plying a busy 
trade in their midst, with the rude monuments of an Indian 
cemetery in the background, pictured a blending of civilization 
and barbarism never again to be seen on this continent. 

After General Sliields became agent for the proprietors, ad- 
vantage was taken of a law of congress providing for obtaining 
title to town sites on Government lands prior to their coming 
into market. This law provided that a judge of the district 
court for the district in which the town site was situated migkt 
enter all lands laid out in lots with streets dedicated to public 
use "For the several use and benefit of the inhabitants thereof." 
quoting tin- language of the patent. This patent was issued 
under date of December 1, 1855, to Andrew G. Chatfield, judge of 
third judicial district of Minnesota, and covered the 280 acres 
comprising the original town of Faribault. May 29, 1856, acting 
under authority of an act of the Territorial legislative assembly 
passed March 3, 1855, Judge Chatfield gave a died of warranty 
to James Sliields, who thus became nominally the owner in fee 
of the whole town site. This, however, was only for convenience 
in making sales and confirming titles by deeds of warranty to 
lands before conveyed by qui; claim, the real ownership being 
determined by the agreement previously made and recorded, 
After perfection of the titles tin- growth of the town was only 
retarded by the inability to procure building material and skilled 
labor to use it. 

During the winter of 1854-55 the first manufacturing estab- 
lishment of any kind in Faribault was a large steam saw mill 
of the old-fashioned kind, running a single upright saw and built 
by tlie brothers, I. G. and 11. Y. Scott. I recall an incident in 


the life of Harvey Y. Scott that I have placed in my memory 
to his credit. While living on his farm on East Prairie he heard 
of the effort being made in behalf of Mr. Faribault, and imme- 
diately brought a load of wheat to town and gave the proceeds 
to the maintenance fund, remarking, "If any more is needed let 
me know, for Mr. Faribault was mighty good to me when I first 
came here, and I don't forget it." After this saw mill started 
it was thronged with waiting applicants for lumber, and a board 
would scarcely leave the saw before it was pounced upon and 
carried off as a precious thing. Even after this mill had been 
reinforced by five or six portable steam mills with a daily capac- 
ity of from three to five thousand feet each, the supply never 
equaled the demand, and lumber piles never accumulated. The 
only other way of getting lumber was by hauling from the 
Mississippi, over almost impassable roads. Not a few of the 
first business houses and residences of 1855-56 were built of 
logs, owing to the difficulty in procuring lumber, some of which 
are still in existence and were much more comfortable than the 
more aristocratic houses of the time hastily constructed of green 

Before the entry of the town site by Judge Chatfield, one 
quarter section of its area, embracing what is now the most 
valuable part of the city was claimed by one Charles Morton as 
first settler under preemption laws. This quarter section in- 
cludes the land lying between Seventh street on the north, 
Division (formerly Front) on the south, Chestnut street or 
Second avenue on the west and Mott avenue on the east. 

In 1855, there were no church edifices in Faribault, but re- 
ligious services were held every Sunday, in unfinished buildings 
sometimes, but more frequently in halls over business places ; 
places generally devoted to dancing, pleasure parties and polit- 
ical gatherings week days, and sermons Sundays. The first 
sermon the writer ever heard in Minnesota was in a grove on 
the borders of East Prairie. The next was in Crump's hall, Fari- 
bault. The sermon was preached by that old man eloquent, 
Elder Cressey, then living and owning a farm on the confines 
of Cannon City. He was a Baptist preacher, but that made no 
difference, for there was no warring of creeds in those early 
days. It was necessary for all denominations to ignore sectarian 
distinctions and combine for the general welfare. Faribault's 
early days were never characterized by the turbulence and ruf- 
fianism so generally prevalent in the rapid settlement of western 
towns, especially those towns whose principal industries are 
connected with mining or lumbering. Faribault's early settle- 
ment was made up from people seeking homes and farming lands, 
followed by the usual proportion of merchants and mechanics, 


each and all bringing with them some capital, generally derived 
from the sale of former holdings in older states. It follows as 
naturally that society formed from such material must be capable 
of fostering education, religion and all the best instincts of 

Here seems a fitting place to record the circumstances at- 
tending the location of the county seat of Rice county, and the 
competition between Faribault and Cannon City. Some time in 
the summer of 1855, Governor Gorman, beguiled by the wily 
tongues of the proprietors of Cannon City, located the county 
seat at that point and appointed county commissioners which 
gave them a temporary advantage which might be made perma- 
nent. The rivalry beginning with that location and ending only 
with the next October election, is well illustrated in many points 
by Eggleston's "Mystery of Metropolisville." The election of 
county commissioners decided the location of the county seat 
and all the efforts of both towns were directed in behalf of those 
officers. The struggle was fierce and that there was no breach 
of the peace was probably owing to the fact that the only polling 
places in the county were located at the competitive points and 
the voters generally voted at the place of their choice, giving 
no chance of collision between opposing interests. One of the 
proprietors of Cannon City, however, appeared in Faribault 
early on the day of election and signified his intention to remain 
all day to challenge votes. This announcement brought con- 
sternation, resulting in a hasty consultation by the Faribault 
management, for each party well knew that many votes had been 
promised that would not bear investigation, especially in the 
matter of residence, which the law required to be six months 
in the state. (That law, by the way, when we had occasion to 
look for it was found in the statutes of 1849, under the heading 
of "sheep and swine.*') The result of the consultation was that 
Levi Nutting and Norbert Paquin were detailed to take charge 
of the challenger and prevent his diminishing the vote for Fari- 
bault to any great extent. 1 tow well they discharged their duties 
may be inferred from the fact that not a vote was challenged dur- 
ing the day. Once, indeed, we came near losing ten votes. Near 
the close of the day, vigilance was somewhat relaxed when he 
saw ten voters approaching the polls tinder the guidance of 
Paquin, which we knew had not been residents the required six 
months ami neither Sears nor Levi had yel observed them. Levi 
caught sight of them first, but there was no time for argument, 
so, hitting Sears a rousing thwack between the shoulders he 
shouted at him, "Doug. Sears, you arn't a d — d fool!" Sears 
turned on him mad as a hornet and shouted back at him, "who 
the h — 1 saiil I was." Then began an explanation that was not 


ended until the polls closed. The commissioners chosen at that 
election who were to organize the county and locate the county 
seat were all living when last heard from, but only one of them 
in Faribault ; their names are F. W. Frink, chairman, and G. F. 
Pettit and Andrew Storer, associates ; before admission into the 
Union, Territorial law required but three commissioners elected 
at large. After admission the law went to the other extreme 
and required a commissioner from each town, with one extra 
for the county seat, thus creating what the people called a pony 

County Seat. Incidents attending the location of the county 
seat in Faribault may be worth mention as showing how such 
things were done in primitive times. At the first meeting of the 
board of the elected county commissioners in January, 1856, the 
county seat was located so far as the designation of the quarter 
section could effect a location, but no particular part of that 
quarter section was selected as a site for county building. In 
the spring of 1856 the commissioners met according to previous 
agreement with General Shields, nominal proprietor of Fari- 
bault, and Norbert Paquin, proprietor of Paquin's first and sec- 
ond additions. The first choice of the commissioners fell on the 
block now occupied by the Congregational church, A. W. Mc- 
Kinstry, A. W. Stockton and others, but that whole block had 
been previously sold and could not be had at any price the 
commissioners could afford. The block now occupied by the 
A. L. Hill residence and others was the only whole block the 
proprietors of Faribault could offer, and Mr. Paquin offered the 
whole block now occupied by A. W. Tenney and others, being 
block 10 of his first addition. In the opinion of the commission- 
ers neither of these blocks was available as being too remote 
from the business center of the town. My choice was then the 
south half of the block on which the court house now stands, 
the north half being already built upon and occupied. Two lots 
of the south half had been bargained for, but Shields told us 
that if we could get quit claim from Wattles, to whom he had 
agreed to sell them, he would sell to the county for the same 
that Wattles had agreed to give. We sent our clerk, Isaac Ham- 
mond, to see what Wattles would sell the lots to him for. In 
the meantime Wattles had seen us with Paquin looking at the 
block offered by him, and thinking to speculate a little at the 
expense of the county, quit claimed to Hammond his interest 
in the lots we wanted for $50, and made haste to secure two lots 
in the block he supposed the commissioners had selected. He 
had agreed to give Shields $175, so the lots cost the commission- 
ers $225, which they had to advance, as there was then no county 
funds. The other three lots were donated by the town pro- 


prietors. Two years later, under the supervision of the late 
Gen. Levi Nutting, the little one story brick building, 20x40, 
on the ground, was erected on the Wattles lots, and for the next 
sixteen years was occupied by the county auditor, county treas- 
urer, register of deeds, clerk of court and judge of probate, and 
all the archives of Rice county were sheltered therein. From 
time to time as occasion offered in 1867-68 the north half of the 
block, now a part of the court house grounds, was purchased 
for the county at an aggregate cost of $7,600 from six different 
owners. In the years 1873-74 the county commissioners had the 
proceeds of $50,000 in bonds with which to build a court house 
and jail. When those buildings were completed, six hundred 
dollars expended in grading the grounds, and four hundred in 
fencing, besides expending two thousand dollars in furnishing 
the buildings, the building committee found that they had over- 
drawn the building fund account forty-seven cents, and imme- 
diately balanced the account by paying that amount into the 
county treasury. The writer knows this bit of history to be 
true, because he was county bookkeeper at the time. The com- 
missioners who expended the building fund so wisely and well 
were: T. B. Clement, chairman, J. C. Closson. J. G. Scott. 
Michael Hanley and H. H. White. 

In November, 1856, the number of occupied buildings on the 
platted portion of the town and additions of Faribault, according 
to actual count as reported by Charles E. Davison, who made 
the enumeration, was nearly three hundred. Of those three hun- 
dred buildings scarcely more than a score are now in existence. 
Of that score of buildings the one bidding Fair to outlast it- 
newer neighbors is the first home built by Alexander Faribault, 
budded as houses were in the days before balloon frames came 
in fashii 'ii. built ti i stay. 

Next to the manufacture of lumber, which must necessarily 
be limited by the supply of raw material, came the establishment 
of a furniture factory by Ansel L. Hill, on block 47 on First 
avenue east, built in the winter of 1857, and having for its motive 
power a little spavined mare hitched to a long --weep, something 
after the manner of the cider presses of old New England. How 
the business grew and prospered under the energetic care of .Mr. 
II ill from such a small beginning is best illustrated by contrast- 
ing the little building on Second avenue with the magnificent 
plant extending from Central to First avenue east. Since the 
death of Mr. Hill in 18 ( >7, the factory has been idle, no one as 
\ et having been found able to take his place. When he died 
the most sincere mourners, outside of the family circle, were his 
workmen who had always found stead) employment, through 
good times and hard times, for Mr. Hill ran his business at a 


loss during such times rather than let his workmen suffer. An- 
other furniture factory was started soon after that of Mr. Hill, 
by two men of German birth, Christian Wandell and William 
Worlein, and was located on the lot where the opera house now 
stands. It was operated by a small steam engine, but only man- 
ufactured for the local trade, and went out of existence when its 
last owner died many years ago. 

The next manufacture of importance was begun by Henry 
Reidel, who, having previously operated a portable sawmill for 
a year or two, began the erection of a flouring mill in 1857, the 
boiler, engine and machinery for which was hauled by ox teams 
from Dubuque in that severest of winters that Minnesota ever 
knew — the winter of 1856-57. Owing to the difficulty and ex- 
pense of getting material together, the mill building was not 
enclosed until the summer of 1858, and by that time Mr. Reidel's 
means were exhausted and he could go no further. He sold out 
to the bankers. Dike and Judd, who put the mill in operation in 
the spring of 1859, retaining Mr. Reidel as manager. The mill 
started with four run of stone and could make one hundred 
barrels of flour every twenty-four hours. After Mr. Judd had 
disposed of his interest to the late John W. Griggs, a brother- 
in-law to Major Dike, the mill was operated by them until its 
sale to the late William L. Turner, in 1872. Mr. Reidel, the 
original owner, operated the mill, in connection with Mr. Turner, 
long enough to recover more than he lost in building it and in- 
vested his gains in successful milling in Owatonna. Mr. Turner, 
after two or three years of poor trade, was compelled to remodel 
his mill to bring it up to date and equip it with rollers and puri- 
fiers in order to keep his flour in the market. In this way he 
became involved, and the mill was sold on foreclosure ten years 
after he came into possession. January 29, 1885, it was pur- 
chased by Messrs. Stockton and Hutchinson, and has been in 
successful operation ever since. The old mill raised in 1858 
forms the central portion of the Faribault Roller Mills of today, 
and it is doubtful if another mill operated by steam of the same 
age can be found in the state. We find in statistics of Fari- 
bault, gathered in 1873, that the principal manufacturers of that 
year were the output of flour made by "five flouring mills." 

The first, and most prominent industry, however, w r as neces- 
sarily the manufacture of lumber, and numerous steam sawmills 
were early in operation, supplying Faribault and surrounding 
country with all the building material used in the crude struc- 
tures of early days. The completion of the Chicago, Milwaukee 
and St. Paul railway late in the year 1865, to Faribault, which 
was its terminus for nearly a year, brought supplies of lumber 
from other sources, and none too soon, for the timber in the 


"big woods" was rapidly disappearing under the demands of 
furniture factories, and fuel for towns and country along its 

As elsewhere stated, commissioners were elected at the 
October election, 1855, whose first business would be the or- 
ganization of the county by locating the county seat. After or- 
ganization. In January, 1856, the first business transacted by 
the board was granting the petition for laying out the St. Paul 
road, being the road now traveled from the northern terminus 
of Second avenue past Oak Ridge cemetery to intersect the 
Dodd road, and the formation of school district Xo. 1 (now Fari- 
bault school district) was next in the order of the day. In the 
summer of 1856, the first place of public worship, the First Con- 
gregational church, of Faribault, was erected where it still stands, 
used by the Presbyterians for church services. The first teacher 
in the public school of district No. 1 was the Hon. R. A. Mott ; 
Rev. Lauren Armsby was the first occupant of the pulpit in the 
new church ; while the writer had the pleasure of commending 
the work of the other two in the columns of the Rice County 
Herald, the first newspaper in Rice county, and one of the first in 
southern Minnesota. 

I think it is an acknowledged truth, that society only begins 
to take shape when these three most potent forces in modern 
civilization, the common school, the church and public press, 
arc firmly established. The first incorporation of any body politic 
in Rice county, was the incorporation of the Evangelical Congre- 
gational church and society of Faribault, July 16, 1856. July 
8, of the same year. Truman Nutting, Alexander Faribault and 
Dr. N. M. Bemis, trustees of school district No. 1. received a deed 
for lots seven and eight of block forty-two, and began the 
erection of the first district school house in Faribault. That 
house, after serving it > purpose until the multiplication of 
scholars required larger accommodations, was removed to the 
position it now occupies on the southwest corner of block thirty- 
four on Fourth street. After being used a short time as the 
German Catholic church, it is now used as a grocer)' store in 
front with a blacksmith shop in the rear. The method of levying 
and collecting taxes for building school houses and support of 
schools in Territorial times is very generally forgotten now. 
Then the voters in a school district assembled at the place where 
school was kept, if there was any such place, if not, at the resi- 
dence of some one of the school trustees, and voted to raise by 
tax on the property in the district such amount as they deemed 
necessary for the purpose intended, and the clerk of the district, 
a copy of the assessed valuation of the district being furnished 
him. extended the tax. and. after collecting what he could, re- 


turned the delinquent to be entered on the tax roll of the county 
to be sold for taxes. The building in which the Rice County 
Herald first saw the light was built on block six of the southern 
addition fronting on Park place. 

It must not be thought that there were neither schools nor 
churches prior to the dates above given, which only mark the 
time when these institutions first took legal form and became 
corporate bodies. Luke Hulett, the first farmer settler of Rice 
county after Mr. Faribauit, and both of these pioneers having 
large families, hired a teacher who taught a school free to all 
before the survey of the town site in 1854. School was also 
taught in 1855 with a large attendance, but the legally organized 
district school, supported by the taxpayer and free to all, did not 
have an existence until July, 1856. It has always been a pleasing 
memory to the writer, in remembering that his last editorial 
notice, written for the Rice County Herald, was a paragraph 
calling attention to the first church bell in Minnesota south of 
St. Paul. 

Up to near the close of 1857 the country was prosperous, 
and Faribault grew rapidly. There was never an agricultural 
country whose pioneers brought with them so much means as 
the first settlers in Faribault and vicinity, and labor was the 
most valuable thing in the market and frequently not to be hired 
at any price. But resources continually drawn upon without 
anything to augment them diminish rapidly. It was not until 
the crop ol 1859 was harvested that Rice county raised more than 
enough produce to supply the home market, and then the means 
of transportation were such as to afford no profit in any other, 
and the beginning of the year 1858 saw the beginning of hard 
times. The farming community had generally expended the 
money they brought with them, and had not yet a surplus ; in 
fact, most of the farmers in the vicinity of Faribault were buying 
flour for their own use. The fall of 1858 saw something of a 
revival in business, occasioned by the grading of the Milwaukee 
railway, then known as Minnesota Central, stimulated by the 
five million loan bill, but as there was very little money expended 
in the operation so far as Faribault was concerned, the revival 
was more apparent than real, for the grading was generally paid 
for by orders on the various stores, and the merchants were 
obliged to wait nearly a quarter of a century for their pay. Gin- 
seng was the manna that provided food for the multitude, and 
was about the only product of the country that paid the laborer 
remunerative prices in the years of 1858 and 1859. Buyers were 
here from the cities of New York and Philadelphia, and the 
rivalry was spirited. There was just then a great demand for 
the root in China, and, fortunatelv for us, our "woods was full 


of it," and, by the time the supply was exhausted we had begun 
to get some revenue from other sources. But that year of pov- 
erty was not without its compensations, for the year 1858 saw 
the foundations laid for those educational institutions that with 
its common schools have given Faribault a reputation well nigh 
world-wide. About New Year's day, 1857, news came that the 
land office for this district was about to be removed from Winona 
to Faribault. Soon after the removal was effected a change in 
officers was made, and Samuel Plumer took the place of Captain 
Upman. Then began a rivalry between the north and south 
ends of town, but after causing much useless expense in dupli- 
cating bridges and expending public money so that one end of 
the town should have as much expended in it as the other, 
whether necessity demanded it or not, the establishment of free 
delivery of mails and the building of the Chicago Great Western 
Railway into the heart of the city has resulted in convincing its 
citizens that hostilty of one part of the cty to another is not 
conducive to the welfare of either. In 1857 the strife was at 
fever heat, and each upper and lower town was striving to in- 
duce the land office authorities to locate the registers' and re- 
ceivers' offices in their particular locality. Business men south 
of Second street purchased the lot on which the Central avenue 
school house now stands and built a commodious office for the 
register, while the men of the north end built an office for the 
receiver on block nineteen, corner of Sixth street and Central 

In the month of March, 1857, we experienced in Faribault 
some of the excitement common to frontier life in the earliest 
years of the colonies. It will not seem much of a story now — 
the nana) ion of the first Indian scare in Faribault — after the 
Indian massacre of 1862, but, in 1857. when the majority of the 
inhabitants had only such knowledge of Indian character as 
could be learned from early history, where the horrid barbarities 
of savages in New England, in Wyoming and the dark and bloody 
ground of Kentucky, arc recorded, it is little wonder that when 
news came that [nk-pe-du-ta ( Inkpadoota) and his band had 
devastated Mankato and St. Peter, only forty miles away, and 
were in full cry for Faribault, the excitement was something ter- 
rible. I low the news came. I think, was never definitely known, 
hut as "Wah-chunk-a-maza" and his little band of relatives were 
then encamped about the town, 1 believe it came through them, 
and, as it was only about one hundred miles in error, as to dis- 
tance, was more nearly correct than rumors generally are. Mow- 
ever the news came, only a few who had experienced fruitless 
Indian in previous years treated the matter lightly. Gen- 

eral Shields being then a resident, and about the only resident 


who had seen warfare of any kind, naturally took command, and 
immediately set about organizing some kind of defense for our 
defenseless town. All guns of any description and all the am- 
munition the town possessed were hastily gathered in, and 
sentries were stationed within hailing distance of each other all 
along the southern and western boundaries of the town, those 
being the exposed points in the direction from which the Indians 
were expected to come. Our domicile was on one of the outer 
lines and the sentry on that station was the late Will Camp- 
bell. Notwithstanding it was the month of March it was bitterly 
cold, and the three feet of snow on a level which the winter had 
accumulated had scarcely diminished. Under such circumstances 
the sentry's duties were not enviable, for he was obliged to make 
frequent visits to our fireside to keep from freezing. For three 
nights there were many sleepless eyes in Faribault, and many 
tearful mothers watching over sleeping children. On the first 
night of the excitement it was happily suggested, I think by 
Mr. Faribault, that a messenger be sent to St. Peter, or as near 
that place as circumstances would permit. Chaska, a young In- 
dian about sixteen years old, whom I had so far civilized as to 
employ him occasionally as the devil of my printing establish- 
ment, was the chosen messenger, and made the round trip over 
the deep snow inside of three days. Five years later, at the 
time of the greatest Indian massacre ever experienced in North 
America, that same Chaska, who had been the pet of my printing 
office and the playmate of the boys of Faribault, was one of 
the foremost in the atrocities of that terrible time. He brought 
the news that the massacre began at Spirit Lake, a settlement 
near the north line of Iowa, about 100 miles southwest of Fari- 
bault, and ended at Lake Shetek, in Murray count}', Minnesota. 
Ink-pe-d-u-ta, the leader of the Indians engaged in the massacre, 
was an outlaw of the Wa-pa-cu-ta's (Wapakootas), outlawed for 
slaying a chief of that band twenty years before. A part of his 
band had preceded him and ravaged a settler's premises of every 
eatable. Ink-pe-du-ta, and one of his sons, coming soon after, 
demanded more food, which the settler was obliged to refuse, 
having just been despoiled of all he had. Ink-pe-du-ta told his 
sons that it was a shame to beg for food when they could 
take it without asking, whereupon the son shot the father and 
the murder of the whole family followed. In Spirit Lake and 
Lake Shetek and between, these Indians killed in all forty-seven 
people, and took four women prisoners. Two of these, they 
killed, and two were afterwards rescued by three Wahpeton 
Sioux who received $1,500 each as reward. Ink-pe-du-ta and his 
band, all told, numbered only twelve men, and Ink-pe-du-ta's. 
two boys. It will be readily seen that this outbreak was near 


enough to Faribault to excite apprehension, in consideration of 
the circumstances. There were then no telegraph stations any- 
where in the state, excepting two or three on the river. The 
snow was still deep and drifts were impassable for anything 
but snow-shoes in many places. We were then sometimes three 
weeks at a time without any news from interior towns, only 
such news as rumors bring, and when such rumors are of wars 
and massacre they are disquieting to the nerves, especially of 
women and nerveless men. There was an intimate connection 
between this outbreak and the greater one of five years later, 
but a rehearsal of the facts establishing the connection does not 
properly belong to a history of Faribault. I may say, here, 
however, that the fright of many of the prominent citizens, some 
of whom were enthusiastic Indian lovers, was greater in 1862 
than in 1857, and only the Provost Marshall and his aids pre- 
vented their departure for the east. Some, indeed, had already 
started and looked as if they were for sale cheap when the same 
stage by which they had started in the morning brought them 
back in the afternoon. 

From 1857 to 1865 the population of Faribault increased 
slowly, being estimated by the assessor in 1857 at 1,520, and in 
1865 at 2,234, but in those intervening years it is almost a wonder 
that there was no decrease. Wheat was the only cash product 
of the farm, and there being no railroad the Mississippi towns 
furnished the only market ; consequently wheat was low and 
trade was dull. Within those years, too, were four years of 
the bloodiest conflict the world ever saw; a war which took from 
Rice county nearly one-tenth of its entire population. Seven 
hundred of its best and bravest men enlisted when the population 
of the county the year before the war was but 7,860. Many, if 
not a majority of these men, enlisted from Faribault or its im- 
mediate vicinity. No town or city in this broad land outside the 
immediate scene of conflct felt the horrors of war more keenly 
than Faribault, and the signs of mourning in church and street 
and every social meeting told to the world that Minnesota's men 
were in the thickest of the fight. It seemed as if all thought of 
gain or profit was abandoned for the time, and all that could 
be spared from the actual necessities of living was devoted to 
the soldier in the field or to the care of his loved ones at home. 
At the close of the war there was renewed activity in all branches 
of business. Building was resumed and many of the best dwell- 
ings and business houses of the present city were constructed be- 
tween 1865 and 1870. Business houses of brick or stone were 
taking the places of those destroyed by fire, or rendered out of 
fashion by reason of being too primitive for the times. In 1870 
the population of the territory now within city limits, com- 


piled from the Unted States census rolls of that year by myself, 
assisted by the enumerator, numbered 4,130, being a little more 
than one-fourth of the population of the whole county, which 
then was 16,399. Prior to the adoption of city incorporation 
with well defined boundary lines there was never an accurate 
census taken of the village proper. In the adoption of the town- 
ship system of government, town 110 of range 20 was divided 
between Faribault and Cannon City in 1858, the dividing line be- 
tween the two towns being as nearly as possible the line between 
the timbered land and the prairie, Faribault retaining the timber. 
Prior to 1872 Faribault was not even a chartered village, but its 
municipal affairs were conducted by a board of supervisors, 
three in number, in fact, an ordinary township government ; con- 
sequently, when a census was had it included the whole sixteen 
sections and did not include that part of the village west of the 
C. M. & St. P. Ry. September 25, 1858, the road through Cooper 
ravine (now Ravine street) was opened, starting from the eastern 
terminus of Second street bridge. Before the opening of this 
road the only approach to Faribault from Cannon City, North- 
field or East Prairie was over Front street road, fording the river, 
or, when conditions were favorable, following Water street down 
to Second street bridge. That bridge was the pioneer among 
bridges, being the first to span Straight river in Rice county, 
and was built under the direction of the late Charles Wood, bet- 
ter known in Faribault as Sheriff Wood, he having been elected 
the first sheriff after county organization. That bridge, built 
over a fitful stream sometimes only a little rivulet fed and barely 
kept alive by springs along its course, and sometimes a roaring 
torrent with all the force of a swollen river, that unpretending 
bridge with its piers rough cribs of logs filled with stone, its 
stringers native trees, pinned to the piers, withstood all attacks 
of ice and flood. Even the great rise of July, 1858, the highest 
known to white men, surged under, around and over that bridge, 
but when the flood subsided that bridge was still there and there 
it stood until torn away to give place to a more ambitious 

Charles Wood was another pioneer of Faribault deserving 
more than passing notice. By virtue of his office as sheriff he 
had the collection of the first tax levied in Rice county, and was 
by law authorized to assess any property that had been over- 
looked or omitted by assessors. In some localities he found that 
more real estate had been overlooked by the assessor than had 
been listed. It not infrequently happened that Sheriff Wood en- 
tered a man's real estate on the tax list, levied the tax, collected 
it, and gave the receipt at one and the same time. Notwithstand- 
ing the excellent opportunity offered for making money on the 


sly, during twenty years that the tax rolls were in my custody 
no receipt of Charles Wood was presented without finding the 
corresponding description marked paid on the tax list and ac- 
counted for in the return. He died at the residence of his son- 
in-law, Lieut. J. C. Turner, in this city, January 29, 1899, at the 
ripe old age of eighty-seven. 

It is a pleasure to record that there never has been denomina- 
tional quarrels between religious sects in Faribault. I believe 
much of the gratification which Bishop Whipple felt when Fari- 
bault offered him his first home in Minnesota was caused by 
the fact that scarcely half a score of his own churchmen were 
represented in the offer. While it may be true that in one or two 
instances there have been serious troubles within a church, such 
troubles were confined to the church in which they originated 
and never involved other societies. 

Doubtless the fraternal feeling between different churches 
originated from the fact that in the first year or two of the set- 
tlement of town and vicinity there were not enough church mem- 
bers of any one denomination to organize separately, and that 
the feeling was perpetuated is due to the pastors of those early 
days. Rev. Lauren Armsby, the first Congregational minister, 
and Father Keller, first parish priest of the Catholic church in 
Faribault, w r ere warm friends and assisted each other in tem- 
perance and charitable work. Rev. William McKinley, one of 
the first circuit riders of the Methodist church in this part of 
the state, told in an old settlers meeting in Northfield a few 
years ago of his first meeting with Elder Cressey, the pioneer 
preacher of the Baptist church. That meeting was in the middle 
<>f Cannon river at the ford near Northfield. Mr. McKinley was 
on horseback on his way to fill an appointment to preach in the 
log cabin of H. M. Matteson, situated on land now occupied by 
the village of Dundas. Elder Cressy was in a buggy intently 
perusing a book with two or three of somebody's children that 
he had picked up on his way playing around him, entirely un- 
conscious that the horse had stopped in mid-stream and was 
enjoying a foot bath while the swiftly running water came nearly 
up to the bottom of the buggy, and they then and there made 
arrangements for alternating services in the neighborhood. Rev. 
Armsby was and still is the warm friend of all who knew him. 
Gentle and scholarly, he was modest and retiring in society and 
none knew the patriotic fire that coursed in his veins until the 
Civil War convulsed the nation. Accepting the chaplaincy of 
the Eighth regiment, tendered him in compliment lor his patriotic 
encouragement of enlistment, his comrades love to tell how on 
Sherman's march to the sea, he never rode either of the two 


horses that were his by virtue of his rank, but they carried 
some poor, sick and weary soldier of the ranks instead, while 
chaplain was trudging along on foot, likely enough carrying the 
equipment of some other weary soldier. Though past his four 
score years he is still a soldier of the cross in distant Kansas. 

John M. Berry came to Faribault in 1855 and was one of the 
famous quartette of lawyers who kept bachelor's hall the first 
winter, the culinary department presided over by that famous 
cook and housekeeper, Reuben Rundell, better known to the boys 
as "Uncle Rundell." After investing in some valuable real 
estate in Faribault and vicinity, Mr. Berry removed to Austin in 
this state, in which town he made his home for two or three 
years, during which he represented Mower county for one term 
in the Territorial legislature of 1857. Returning to Faribault 
he built the house on his farm now owned and occupied by O. F. 
Brand, of nursery fame. He was elected associate justice of the 
supreme court in 1864, a position which he held through suc- 
cessive elections until he died in 1887, respected and lamented 
by the whole state. The writer has more occasion than most 
men to hold his memory in grateful remembrance, for he is in- 
debted to him for assistance in more than one difficulty in his 
official career. On one occasion, in particular, when I applied 
to him for advice he could not advise me because it was a case 
that might come before him judicially, but he handed me a book 
with a leaf turned down and there I found the information I 

In writing of men and things as they were when the civilization 
of Minnesota was in its infancy, prominent among memories 
stands the name of Michael Cook, first state senator in the Minne- 
sota legislature from Rice county. We first became acquainted 
in 1855 in a convention that nominated commissioners to organ- 
ize Rice county, but I love best to remember the kind assistance 
he gave me in setting up and furnishing the printig office of the 
Rice County "Herald." Indeed, without his help, I doubt if I 
could have succeeded in establishing my paper. Modest and unob- 
trusive although he was, his many sterling qualities and incor- 
ruptible honesty always gave him place at the head of the pro- 
cession. An architect of no mean ability as well as skilled work- 
man, several buildings of his construction, one of which is the 
present residence of Hon. Geo. A. Weston, are still standing 
as monuments of his industry and ability. While senator elect 
he quietly enlisted and was soon promoted. He was killed while 
major of his regiment at the battle of Nashville. Some years 
after the close of the war his body was brought home for burial, 
and he now lies with his kindred in Oak Ridge cemetery, but 


his most enduring monument is Michael Cook Post of the Grand 
Army of the Republic, named in his honor. 

In the year 1871 a movement was made toward incorpora- 
tion as a city, under a law which then existed authorizing pro- 
ceedings before the probate court to that end. This method was 
not acceptable to many citizens, and knowing that the charters 
of cities of the state were in the custody of the county auditor, 
application was made to that office to select from them such a 
charter as would be suitable for Faribault, and after making 
a selection to report to a meeting of citizens to be called for the 
purpose of approval or rejection. Being assured that incorpora- 
tion was inevitable, in consideration of being allowed to fix the 
boundaries of the city and wards I assumed the task. After ex- 
amining the several charters in the office I finally took the great- 
er part of our charter from the general statutes of 1869, intro- 
duced by George F. Batchelder, senator from Rice county. Meet- 
ings were called at different times and places, but the boundaries 
as fixed by the charter, and especially the ward lines, provoked 
so much discussion that no time was left for anything else; so 
the charter went to the legislature without ever having been read 
by any citizen of Faribault other than the one who compiled it. 
Hon. II. M. Matteson, lately deceased, had charge of the charter 
in the house, and George W. Batchelder in the senate, and it 
became a law February 29, 1872. The city as incorporated em- 
braces nine square miles, its limits extending as nearly as pos- 
sible equal distances on every side from the platted portions of 
the town. 

The most costly fire in Faribault's history, when between 
one hundred thousand and one hundred and fifty thousand dollars 
worth of property was destroyed, including some of the best 
buildings on the west side of Main street, might have been easily 
subdued when first discovered with such facilities as we have 
now, but in 1878 our little engine failing, we could only keep 
the lire in check until it burned itself out. This fire showed the 
m-ed in' better tire protection, but it was not until five years 
later, when our water works were completed, that Faribault 
could boast of the best lire protection of am town or city in the 
state. On St. Patrick's day. 1882. the Barron house, our prin- 
cipal hotel, after a prosperous history of a quarter of a century, 
took fire and was entirely consumed. This was another fire that 
proved the necessity of some better appliances for fighting fire. 
A subsequent examination showed that the pump of the engine 
had been injured by pumping sand when taking water from the 
shallow river, which rendered it incapable of doing good service. 
A three story stone building had been added to the original hotel. 


»JTO«, Lll 


Tun*? 1 M_^FTiTh 

I: VKRON llnl SE 


having two rooms on the first floor, one of which was occupied 
as a dining room, and the other by the postoffke, while the upper 
stories were finished in parlor and guest rooms. The fire began 
in the wooden building while the guests were at dinner, and it 
was thought when the alarm was first given that it would be a 
small matter to extinguish it, but when it was found that the 
engine could give but a feeble stream that hope was abandoned. 
The wooden building, filled with combustible material, served as 
kindling for the stone addition, and both were soon in ashes and 
crumbling walls. The fire communicated with the upper stories 
of the stone building first, and thus gave opportunity for many 
hands, with brisk work, to remove the contents of the lower story 
safely, and there was no loss to either postoffice or music store. 

Horace E. Barron was another of Faribault's pioneers who 
deserves a prominent place in its history. I think it was that 
the freezing we felt one night in January, 1856, in the "school 
section" of the principal hotel of the town that first called his 
attention to hotel keeping. Be that as it may, that night and 
those that followed it were long remembered by the guests of the 
hotel who tried to "knit up the raveled sleeve of care" with balmy 
sleep. The sleeping room (there was but one) occupied the 
whole floor of the second story and was inclosed by one thick- 
ness of basswood boards, the cracks between the boards covered 
by battens when they were covered at all, while outside the wind 
was blowing from the northwest almost a hurricane, with mer- 
cury marking thirty-five degrees below zero. Before Mr. Bar- 
ron left town he made arrangements with Michael Cook and 
others to begin the erection of the Barron House in the spring 
on the site now occupied by the Brunswick, which is its legitimate 
successor. I believe it is not generally known that foundations 
were laid before Mr. Barron's return in the spring of 1856 for a 
building fronting on Willow street, which, in the judgment of 
his agents was destined to become one of the best if not the best 
business street in Faribault. Mr. Barron kept the foundation 
already laid for the future barn, and rushed the building soon 
to be the most popular hotel in Minnesota, so that July 4, 1856, 
it was opened to the public. 

From that day till the day of his death Faribault had no bet- 
ter friend. He represented Rice county in the lower house one 
term and were it not for the unwritten law forbidding the same 
locality to have a representative more than once in many years, 
he might have continued in office, if he had so desired. Not long 
after the burning of the Barron House he was made steward and 
superintendent of construction for the State Institute for De- 
fectives, and it was this position that occasioned his death. On 


the night of February 26, 1892, the Greene residence took fire 
and, being in line of vision from Mr. Barron"s house with the 
Imbecile school, he, as well as many others, concluded that that 
institution was burning. Although providing shelter for imbe- 
ciles and idiots was not strictly within his line of duties, he hur- 
riedly harnessed his horse and rushed around town to find shelter 
for the poor unfortunates. The excitement and unwonted exer- 
tion developed an unsuspected disease, and before the dawn of 
morning that great heart had ceased to beat. 



Historic Meeting of 1870 — City Charter Passed by Legislature 
and Approved by the Governor, February 29, 1872 — Election 
of April 2, 1882 — First Officers — Mayor Tower's Inaugural 
Address — List of City Officials. 

Faribault city embraces a tract of land three miles square, 
set apart by the legislature and duly incorporated in 1872. At 
that time several of the sections in the old township of Fari- 
bault were restored to Cannon City, a small corner was taken 
from Cannon City, and portions also from Wells, Walcott and 
Warsaw. This division brought the county seat within three 
miles of the geographical center of the county. The city itself 
was divided into four wards by lines running east and west 
along Third street and north and south along Second avenue. 

Faribault was at first a town embracing perhaps a half of 
Cannon City, defined by an irregular line running diagonally 
across the original government township in a southeast and north- 
west direction. But it was finally for the most part restored to 
Cannon City, and three miles square was determined as the form 
and size of the city. In this way the government went on in an 
uneventful manner until the growing town began to realize that 
a city government was required. 

January 22, 1870, a meeting of citizens was held in the office 
of Gordon E. Cole, for the purpose of considering the making 
of an application for a city charter. Some forty persons were 
present at the meeting, of which H. E. Barron was chosen 
chairman, J. R. Parshall secretary. A committee of three, con- 
sisting of Gordon E. Cole, T. B. Clement and Hudson Wilson, 
was appointed to confer with G. F. Batchelder, state senator, and 
devise some form of incorporation and report at the adjourned 
meeting on the following evening. At the adjourned meeting 
some seventy-five persons were present. No action had been 
taken by the committee, but the subject was fully discussed, the 
principal speakers, as appears from the report, having been 
Senator G. F. Batchelder, George E. Skinner, F. W. Frink, J. 
Mullin, Messrs. Babcock and Bean. F. W. Frink presented the 
views of the opponents of the measure. They feared that with 
an increase of dignity would come a corresponding increase of 



style and expense. On motion of R. A. Mott, a division was 
taken, which resulted thirty-nine in favor of incorporation and 
thirty-six against. Senator Batchelder introduced in the legis- 
lature a general law for the incorporation of cities not exceed- 
ing 15,000 inhabitants, which it was believed would render a 
special act of incorporation unnecessary, and no further action 
appears to have resulted at this time. 

A bill for a special charter which was drawn by F. W. 
Frink was introduced in the legislature of 1872 and passed, being 
approved by the governor February 29. This act provided 
for a special election to be held upon the question of its accept- 
ance or rejection on the first Tuesday of April of that year. 

The town supervisors had charge of the election, and ballots 
were cast in two boxes. The first box contained the vote on the 
acceptance of the city charter. This box was opened first, the 
understanding being that should the charter be rejected, the box 
of ballots on the officers of the proposed city should be destroyed 
unopened. The charter being accepted, the other box was 
opened and the city officers declared duly elected. The whole 
number of votes polled was 846, the number of votes in favor 
of incorporation being 555 and those against being 291, the 
majority for incorporation being 264. The victory was celebrated 
by the firing of cannon and general rejoicing. George W. Tower 
was the candidate of the Republican party for mayor and was 
nominated in a mass convention of that party held in Loyhed's 
hall and of which Gen. Levi Nutting was the chairman. The 
Democratic candidate was George W. Newell. 

Hon. George W. Tower, the first mayor of the city, was in- 
augurated on April 9. The other officers elected were : Alder- 
men, C. D. Harn, J. II. Harding, S. C. Dunham, L. C. Ingram, 
J. H. Winter, T. II. Nutting, W. L. Turner and H. E. Barron. 
H. E. Barron was elected president of the board and Henry E. 
Sime was appointed clerk. Justices of the peace. Joseph C. Mold, 
O. F. Perkins, J. B. Quinn and J. F. Smallidge. 

The mayor appointed and the council confirmed officers as 
follows: Chief of police, Moses Cole; policemen. James Hunter 
and Charles Kiekenapp ; city attorney, Gordon E. Cole; city 
surveyor, R. II. L. Jewett; street commissioner. William Dickin- 
son; assessor, Henry Dunham. Mr. Cole declined to accept the 
attorneyship and J. C. Morrow was appointed. A. W. McKin- 
Stry was appointed city printer. 

The organi ation of the city government was a prominent 
milestone to mark the progress that had been made and to show 
in what direction it was moving. 

The brief inaugural address of the mayor-elecl i^ here pre 
sented. lie said: "1 came to Faribaull in October, 1855, and 


it has been my home ever since. Many of the voters, the busi- 
ness men, the wives, and the mothers of this young city were 
then prattling children in other states or on the other conti- 
nent. The town itself, except as to the mere territory, was not 
in existence, having been subsequently entered as a townsite 
by Judge Chatfield. The rapid settlement of the village com- 
menced in the spring of 1856, and its location at such an impor- 
tant point very soon assured its success, and it became the most 
promising place in southern Minnesota. In 1857 Gen. James 
Shields, who had already been a United States senator, by his 
influence in Washington secured this as a point to be provided 
for in the congressional land grant in aid of the Minneapolis & 
Cedar Valley railroad, which finally secured this most impor- 
tant railroad connection with the East. Early in the sixties our 
delegates in the legislature secured the location of the Deaf, 
Dumb and Blind Institute in Faribault, and in due time the 
school was opened and the buildings erected. About the same 
time, in a humble way, was laid the foundation which has proved 
to be deep and broad, of the Bishop Seabury University, and we 
now point to these institutions with pride, and it becomes us as 
a city to cherish for them a friendly and fostering interest." 


The first officers of the city of Faribault are given above. 
Since then the annual elections and appointments have resulted 
as follows : 

The following is a list of the members of the council elected 
each year after the first, since the organization of the city in 

1873 — Mayor, Thomas Buckham ; aldermen, E. Fleckenstein, 
William Lee, L. C. Ingram, A. Mortenson, D. Cavanaugh. 

1874 — Mayor, G. N. Baxter; aldermen, M. Goetzinger, A. 
Moore, W. B. Brown, J. Mullin. 

1875 — Mayor, G. N. Baxter; alderman, E. Fleckenstein, G. S. 
Woodruff, A. Mortenson, D. Cavanaugh. 

1876 — Mayor, Levi Nutting; aldermen, Warren Allen, H. 
Pierce, Sr., J. Sumner, John Mullin. 

1877— Mayor, T. B. Clement ; aldermen, T. J. McCarthy, E. R. 
Wood, Miles Hollister, D. Cavanaugh. 

1878— Mayor, J. R. Parshall ; aldermen, C. P. Pike, S. L. 
Crocker, A. W. Pratt, John Mullin. 

1879 — Mayor, Gordon E. Cole; aldermen, E. Kaul, I. B. Spen- 
cer, A. Mortenson. D. Cavanaugh. 

1880 — Mayor. George W. Batchelder; aldermen, M. J. Shee- 
ran, S. L. Crocker, J. F. Healy, John Mullin. 


1881 — Mayor, George \V. Wood; aldermen, B. Schmidt, 
Henry Chaffee, A. J. Mennell, D. Cavanaugh. 

1882— Mayor, H. W. Pratt; aldermen, J. F. Lindeman. J. D. 
Shipley, G. W. Stafford, G. A. Weston. 

1883— Mayor. H. W. Pratt; aldermen, E. Kaul, H. Chaffee, 
William Wachlin, D. Cavanaugh. 

188-1 — Mayor, C. L. Lowell; aldermen, L. Hawley, L. D. New- 
comb, E. J. Moran, G. A. Weston. 

1885 — Mayor, C. L. Lowell; aldermen, Thomas Carpenter, 
J. H. Ashley, E. N. Leavens, R. M. Evans. 

1886 — Mayor, T. B. Clement ; aldermen, F. Lockwood, L. D. 
Newcomb, L. Carufel, F. J. Vogelsberg. 

1887 — Mayor, J. L. Townley ; aldermen, William O'Brien, A. 
Fuller, A. H. Hatch, B. J. Sheridan, D. Cavanaugh. 

1888— Mayor, Stephen Jewett ; aldermen, C. P. Pike, J. J. V an 
Saun, F. W. Winter, Adam Weyer. 

1889— Mayor, Stephen Jewett; aldermen, J. D. Fuller, B. B. 
Sheffield, W. E. Jones, John Volz. 

1890 — Mayor, F. W. Winter; aldermen, E. Meyer, F. Laufen- 
burger, Warren Nutting, Adam Weyer. 

1891— Mayor, F. W. Winter; aldermen, E. Kaul, M. L. 
Emery, L. Thilmane, D. Cavanaugh. 

1892 — Mayor, Donald Grant; aldermen, R. Ochs, M. L. Reyn- 
olds, E. J. Moran, P. F. Ruge. 

1893 — Mayor, Donald Grant; aldermen, William Kaiser, B. B. 
Sheffield, L. Tuttle, D. Cavanaugh. 

1894— Mayor, B. B. Sheffield; aldermen, William B. Hawley, 
M. L. Emery, F. W. Winter. P. F. Ruge. 

1895— Mayor, B. B. Sheffield ; aldermen, W. W. Trafton, G. T. 
Smith, Jacob Fink, John Kasper. 

1896— Mayor, P. F. Ruge; aldermen, L. F. Miller, C. II. Birch, 
P. B. Lamoreux, Adam W r eyer. 

1897— Mayor, A. D. Keyes ; aldermen, C. M. Wall, R. E. 
( )rne, J. Fink, J. Kasper. 

1898 — Mayor, 1'. F. Ruse; aldermen. John A. Hough, Charles 
H. Birch, P. B. Lamoreux. Charles F. Wendt. 

1899— Mayor, R. A. Mott; aldermen. C. M. Wall. H. F. 
Klemer, I'. J. Harger, John Kasper. 

1900 — Mayor, EC. D. Chase; aldermen, John Haug, John Jep- 
son, George F. Lieb, G. W. Murphy. 

1901— Mayor, I'. F. Ruge; aldermen. C. M. Wall. H. F. 
Klemer, G. F. Lieb, John Kasper. 

1902— Mayor. Charles S. Batchelder; aldermen. F. L. Glotz- 
bach, James R. Smith, E. Van Saun. II. C. Theopold. 

1903— Mayor, C. S. Batchelder; aldermen, C. M. Wall. 11. F. 
Klemer, Fred Bartlett, John Kasper. 


1904— Mayor, A. H. Hatch; aldermen, Albert A. Dodge, 
James R. Smith, Ed. Van Saun, H. C. Theopold. 

1905— Mayor, F. L. Glotzbach; aldermen, C. M. Wall, H. F. 
Klemer, F. W. Bartlett, John Kasper. 

1906 — Mayor, S. Kingsley; aldermen, Nicholas Klopp, J. F. 
McCarthy, F. A. Kiekenapp, William H. Holden. 

1907— Mayor, George L. Smith ; aldermen, C. M. Wall, W. A. 
Retzlaff, Kelsey S. Chase, John Kasper. 

1908 — Mayor, G. L. Smith ; aldermen, Edward Swanson, J. F. 
McCarthy, Fred A. Kiekenapp, William H. Holden. 

1909— Mayor, George L. Smith ; aldermen, C. M. Wall, W. H. 
Retzlaff, R. R. Hutchinson, John Kasper. 

1910 — Mayor, Nelson S. Erb; aldermen, Frank O'Brien, J. F. 
McCarthy, Charles S. Baker, A. M. Brand. 

In addition to the above, the present city officers are : Vice- 
president of the council, C. M. Wall ; recorder, D. F. MacKenzie; 
attorney, James P. McMahon ; city engineer, F. W. McKellip ; 
chief of police, H. F. Smallidge; city justice, M. F. Donahue; 
city justice, J. C. Turner; chief of fire department, E. F. Kelley; 
water commissioner and plumbing inspector, I. E. Wilson ; 
street commissioner, E. E. Norton ; physician, H. R. Smith, 
M. D. ; treasurer, W. H. Lindenberg; assessor, S. M. West; over- 
seer of the poor, Edward Van Saun ; market master, Charles F. 
Kiekenapp; official paper, "Faribault Pilot"; health officer, F. R. 



Advantages and Location — Minnesota School for the Deaf, 
Dumb and Blind — Minnesota School for Defectives — Minne- 
sota School for the Deaf and Blind — School for the Blind — 
School for the Deaf — The Minnesota School for the Feeble 
Minded and Colony for Epileptics. 

Next to the Episcopalian institutions in Faribault, the state 
schools located here have been a most important factor in the 
prosperity of the city, and their well kept grounds and beautiful 
buildings have added greatly to the beauty of the landscape. 
The heads of the institutions, Drs. A. C. Rogers, James J. Dow 
and J. N. Tate have taken their part in the development and life 
of the city, and in addition to this the corps of talented teachers 
have contributed much to the social and intellectual life of the 
community. The business men of the town have also profited 
to a certain extent by the presence here of these institutions. 



The year 1858 was the year in which the seed was planted 
that in a large measure determined the future of Faribault, for 
in that year foundations were laid for educational institutions 
that have given character to the town and its society. By an 
act of the state legislature, approved August 11, 1858, Faribault 
was designated as the location for the school for deaf mutes, 
conditioned that the citizens should donate forty acres of land 
for a site. Forty acres in the adjoining town of Wells were 
purchased for the state of Minnesota for $360 for a site. Five 
years elapsed before anything further was done toward estab- 
lishing a school, and then that site was sold and the grounds now 
occupied on the heights east of Straight river purchased. In 
1863, the legislature having made a small appropriation, George 
F. Batchelder, R. A. Mott and D. H. Frost, as a board of com- 
missioners, established the school in a building originally built 
for a store by the late Maj. Sterne H. Fowler, standing near the 
lot occupied on Division street by Wostcrvelt & Ball. In 1866 
a blind department was added and the combined school was 







known as the Institution for the Education of the Deaf, Dumb 
and Blind. It was found, after a few years' trial, that an attempt 
at educating the blind and deaf under one management in the 
same institution was detrimental to both. 


Therefore, in 1874 a separation was made and the school for 
the blind opened in the building bought of Mr. Faribault for that 
purpose. The legislature of 1881 established a school at Fari- 
bault for Idiots, Imbeciles and Feeble-Minded, and thus three 
separate and distinct state institutions, each with its own 
superintendent and employes but all under the same board of 
directors, were established under the title of "Minnesota Insti- 
tute for Defectives." 

The history of the state educational institutions properly 
begins with the deed to the state of the forty acres of land pur- 
chased by the citizens with funds donated for the use and 
benefit of the state institution for the education of the deaf and 
dumb. This deed bears date August 9, 1857. By authority of 
an act approved March 1, 1864, Gov. Stephen Miller sold the 
forty acres above mentioned to the late John B. Braley for $700 
and Braley sold to the state twenty acres of the present site for 
$1,250, the difference being made up by subscription. With this 
last purchase the donations of citizens ceased. It is fitting to 
say that each and every act of the legislature affecting the loca- 
tion, government, buildings and titles to lands belonging to all 
state institutions located in Faribault either originated with 
Judge Mott or are indebted to his support for their accomplish- 
ment, and all the time from the first organization of the school 
for the deaf and dumb to the establishment of the state board 
of control in 1901, he had been the secretary of the Minnesota 
Institute for Defectives, located at Faribault, save only two years 
of the time when the late Bishop Thomas occupied the position. 
Under date of July 25, 1866, a deed was obtained from Parmela 
Bouchet Giberton, a resident of France, for about fourteen acres 
adjoining the Braley twenty and the new site, and the one now 
on which all the buildings of the deaf and dumb school are 
located was considered complete. Additions, however, have 
been made from time to time. 


Previous to the creation of the board of control one board of 
directors had charge of the Minnesota Institute for Defectives, 
which consisted of the School for the Deaf, the School for the 
Blind and the School for the Feeble-Minded. The law establish- 


ing the board of control placed the School for the Feeble-Minded 
under the exclusive authority of the board of control, and the 
schools for the deaf and blind partially under the management 
of the board of directors and partially under the board of control. 
In 1892 these changes were completed by the law which gave 
these last named schools the combined title, "Minnesota Schools 
for the Deaf and Blind," and prescribed that they should here- 
after be grouped and classed with the educational institutions of 
the state. 

The present board is as follows : Governor A. O. Eberhart, ex 
officio; C. G. Schultz, superintendent of public instruction, ex 
officio; Benjamin B. Sheffield, Faribault, president; Edward W. 
Johnson, Faribault ; E. L. Welch, St. Paul ; Edgar P. Loyhed, 
Faribault; Dr. J. A. Dubois, Sauk Center. The board of 
directors are appointed by the governor, one member annually 
for a term of five years. The resident officers are appointed by 
the board, without term. 


The School for the Blind is located on the Faribault home- 
stead. This, and lands purchased since the establishment of 
the School for the Feeble-Minded in 1881, constitutes a domain 
of nearly 500 acres of the best land and richest soil in Minnesota, 
situated on the heights bordering the eastern shore of Straight 
river, its massive main building with castelated towers, sur- 
rounded by the lesser buildings, Sunnyside for girls, Skinner 
hall for boys, the hospital, and power house where the dynamos 
are run, these, and many other buildings connected with the 
school, when seen from a distance have the appearance of a 
small, well-built city. 

This school was not started until 1866, although the legis- 
lature of 1863 had passed a law establishing a department for 
the care and education of the blind, together with the deaf and 
dumb, and under the same management. During the summer 
of 1866, Miss. II. N. Tucker was employed as teacher, and three 
blind children were received, provided for and taught in the 
Fitzgerald house in the south part of the town. Subsequently 
this school was moved to the north part of the town, in the 
Tanner house, so called, and in May, 1868, soon after the deaf 
and dumb occupied the north wing of their building, the blind 
were removed to the same building with them. Here the blind 
remained until their removal in 1874 to their present quarters 
on the old Faribault place, where for one year they were under 
the care and instruction of Prof. A. X. Pratt, acting principal. 
J. J. Dow, the present efficient superintendent, took charge in 


1875. At that time Dr. Dowe was known as principal and resi- 
dent officer in charge. In 1881 he became superintendent, a 
title he still retains. The results accomplished in the school, and 
its wide reputation are the highest encomiums that can be 
written of Mr. Dow's work. 

The school is open to all blind persons between the ages 
of six and twenty-five years, residing in the state of Minnesota. 
Board, care and instruction are furnished to all pupils free of 
charge. The school is organized on the basis of the school 
system of the state, with an elementary course of eight years 
and a secondary or high school course of four years. Manual 
and industrial training is given in sewing, knitting and fancy 
work, in sloyd, rattan and willow work, in hammock and net 
weaving, and in broom and whisk making. A course of musical 
study is maintained, including instruction upon the piano and 
pipe organ, the violin and other orchestral instruments, in indi- 
vidual and class singing, in the theory and history of music and 
in the art of piano tuning and repairing. A well furnished 
library in raised print, numbering more than 1.200 volumes is 
maintained in connection with the school. From it books are 
sent to all blind persons in the state who desire them, free of 
charge for transportation. 


The first appropriation of the legislature for the support of 
the deaf and dumb was in 1863; the same legislature appointed 
George F. Batchelder, R. A. Mott, and David H. Frost as a 
board of commissioners to start the school. Mr. Mott was sent 
to Ohio, where he obtained the services of Prof. R. H. Kinney, 
an experienced teacher, who came to Faribault and organized 
the first deaf mute school in Minnesota. On the second 
Wednesday in September in 1863, the school opened with five 
pupils in attendance. The buildings occupied were the store 
and dwelling on Front street known as Major Fowler's store. 
The next year the school increased and George W. Chase was 
employed as assistant teacher. In 1864 the legislature appro- 
priated $4,100 for the support of the school; $850 of which was 
expended in erecting a small wooden building 18x24, just east 
of Fowler's store for a boys' dormitory. The building was 
subsequently sold and moved to Fourth street. Prof. Kinney 
experienced difficulties and some hardships in his work, and 
sore bereavement in his family. At the end of his third year 
he resigned the office of superintendent. About this time an 
important change took place, in the contemplation of a site for 
a permanent building. The original 40 acres of land donated 


by the citizens of Faribault was sold and the present lot on the 
bluff east of Straight river was obtained. Professor Kinney 
having retired, the board of directors employed Dr. J. L. Noyes, 
of Hartford, Conn., to take his place. September 7, 1866, Dr. 
Noyes and family, with A. L. Steele, assistant teacher, and with 
Miss Henrietta Watson, matron, arrived in Faribault to carry out 
the work already begun. This year chronicles the appropria- 
tion of $15,000 by the legislature for the first permanent building, 
for the deaf and dumb on the site already mentioned, and the 
next year the foundation of the north wing of the edifice was 
commenced. February 5, 1867, the corner stone was laid by the 
governor in the presence of the members of the legislature. The 
citizens of Faribault had now contributed funds to purchase 54 
acres of land for the use of the institutions, and by appropriation 
and purchase in 1882, more was added making a site of 65 acres. 

March 17, 1868, the north wing was occupied by the deaf 
and dumb for the first time. The building was designed and 
arranged to accommodate fifty pupils. Sixty was the maximum. 
In May of the same year the blind pupils were added to the 
deaf mutes, and soon the quarters became too small for the 
occupants. During the year, 1869, the foundation of the south 
wing was laid, and the superstructure was to be a building suited 
to accommodate the girls and the class rooms for the blind. 
These two wings were of equal size and stood 96 feet apart with 
temporary passage way between them. September 10, 1873, 
the school was reorganized with the boys occupying the north 
wing and the girls the south, with appropriate rooms for the 
blind in each. The same year steps were taken to provide a 
separate permanent home for the blind pupils, as there was not 
room enough for both classes in the two wings, and it being 
obvious after a fair trial that the two classes were so dissimilar 
as to require separate apartments. Accordingly the blind were 
removed to the present site of that school. The places vacated 
by the blind were soon filled by the deaf and dumb and in 1879 
the plans for the main center building were completed, by 
Monroe Shcire, of St. Paul, and steps taken for completing the 
entire edifice. This has since been known as M<>tt hall, in honor 
of Hon. R. A. Mott who has done so much for the state institu- 
tions here. In the fall of 1879 the entire main center and the 
two wings were occupied by the pupils and the school 

Since then various buildings have been added. There is a 
building for the teaching of manual training, and an engine 
house. There is also a laundry and hospital. In the present 
\ car, two class room buildings have been united by a domed 


auditorium, making another beautiful building, and adding a 
pleasant feature to the landscape. 

At the death of Dr. Noyes, after years of faithful service, 
the present superintendent. Dr. J. N. Tate, was appointed, and 
has since ably served the institution. 

This school has already been instrumental in preparing 
hundreds of deaf youths to be useful and self reliant citizens, 
and year by year a few are graduated, well prepared to take 
their places beside the hearing and speaking youths who leave 
the public schools. Pupils receive instruction in the following 
trades and handicrafts: baking, blacksmithing, cabinet making, 
chair caning, carpentry, cooking, drawing, dressmaking, fancy 
work, glazing, ironing, painting, printing, sewing, shoemaking, 
sloyd, woodcarving, wood inlaying, and wood turning. A large 
part of the repairing to buildings and furniture is done by the 
pupils, so the trades are not only schools for the pupils, but are 
a means of revenue to the state. The industrial training in the 
institution is regarded as second in importance only to that done 
in the literary department. The methods of instruction are 
eclectic. They admit of every known way. That in use at this 
institution is known as the combined system. The method is 
adapted to the child. The one object in the preparation of the 
pupil for life's battle, is never lost sight of. One central thought 
dominates, from the time the pupil enters school until his course 
is completed, that is to give him a knowledge of the English 
language, in all cases written and where possible, also spoken. 
The aim is to give every pupil the opportunity to demonstrate 
his ability to be successfully educated orally. All pupils are 
taught drawing and special lessons are given in painting to a 
number. The proper age for admittance is eight years. The 
regular school period is ten years, to which a special course of 
three years may be added. 


Recognition of the necessity and advantage of public care 
for the feeble-minded and the establishment of institutions for 
this purpose have been matters of later historical sequence than 
the institutional education of the deaf and blind. This has 
resulted from two facts: First, the lack of knowledge as to the 
large number of feeble-minded in society, and second, the assump- 
tion that nothing could be done for them. So, in Minnesota, while 
the deaf and blind had for a number of years previous been 
educated in Faribault it was not until March 8, 1879, that a 


law was passed looking to the care and training of their more 
unfortunate brothers and sisters. 

Under date of November 30, 1868, Dr. J. L. Noyes, superin- 
tendent of the Minnesota Institution for the Education of the 
Deaf, Dumb and Blind, reported that two children were dismissed 
on account of being weak-minded, there being no facilities for 
their training and the law limiting the privileges of the institu- 
tion to those of "capacity to incur instruction." The act of 1879 
established a commission to visit the hospitals for insane and 
among other duties they were required to select idiotic and 
feeble-minded persons found there and turn them over to the 
trustees of the deaf, dumb and blind institution. The latter were 
authorized to establish a school for their training. Five thousand 
dollars was appropriated for this purpose for 1879 and $6,000 for 
the year 1880. This school was spoken of as the "Experimental 
School" and the work was begun in a frame building belonging 
to George M. Gilmore, situated on the east side bluff between 
Second and Third streets, formerly used as a private school for 
young ladies and known as the "Fairview House." The school 
was organized by Dr. Henry M. Knight, a veteran in the care 
and training of the feeble-minded from Lakeville, Conn. His 
son, Dr. George H. Knight was elected superintendent on June 1, 
1879, under the general superintendence, however, of Dr. Noyes 
at the head of the School for Deaf. On July 18, 1879, Dr. George 
Knight arrived to take charge of the work and on July 28 of 
the same year fourteen children (nine boys and five girls) selected 
by the commission, (consisting of Dr. George W. Wood, of 
Faribault; Dr. W. H. Leonard, of Minneapolis; and Dr. C. H. 
Boardman, of St. Paul), from the St. Peter Hospital for Insane, 
were received at the institution at Faribault. 

On March 7, 1881, the legislature passed a bill introduced 
by the Hon. R. A. Mott, from Faribault, establishing a perma 
nent school at the latter place, termed a "Department for the 
Training of Imbeciles and the Custody of Idiots" in connection 
with the institution for the deaf, dumb and blind, nominally. 
although to be located in new buildings for the construction of 
which the legislature provided $25,000. The contract for tin- 
new permanent quarters was let on May 2. 1881. On May 19. 
1881, Dr. George Knight was made superintendent of this 
department, the administration being entirely separate from that 
of the school for deal". On February, 18X_\ the inmates were 
moved into their new quarters, which is now the north section 
of the north wing of the present administration building. On 
April 20, 1884, the legislature having provided for same, contract 
was let for an additional building attached to the one mentioned 

vain urn him; 


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above of equal capacity. These two sections provided, when 
completed, for about one hundred children. 

April 20, 1885, Dr. Knight resigned as superintendent and on 
July 6 following Dr. A. C. Rogers, at the time physician to the 
government training school for Indians near Salem, Ore., was 
elected to the position and took charge September 1 of the same 
year, having thus just completed twenty-five years of service 
at Faribault. Dr. Rogers' previous experience in this work had 
been at the School for Feeble-Minded at Glenwood, Iowa, for 
five years. 

Until 1901, when the legislature adopted a central board of 
control for state institutions, this institution was under the 
general management of a board of directors, consisting of five 
members appointed by the governor, the latter and the superin- 
tendent of public instruction, being ex officio members thereof. 
Politics never has effected the organization of the institution 
itself, and the governing board changed but little in personnel, 
except during a short time just before the board of control organ- 
ization. The members who were in control of this institution 
at its beginning had already served long periods in charge of 
the schools for the deaf and blind. Rodney A. Mott, appointed 
in 1863, was still serving in 1901. Hudson Wilson, appointed 
in 1866, served till 1899, when he was succeeded by Edgar H. 
Loyhed. Thomas B. Clement served from 1875 till 1900, B. B. 
Sheffield succeeding him. George E. Skinner, of St. Paul, 
appointed in 1876, served until his death in September, 1895. 
Rev. George B. Whipple, who was appointed in 1882, served 
until his death in 1888, created a vacancy filled by Anthony 
Kelly, of Minneapolis. Ill health caused the retirement of the 
latter in 1898, and he was succeeded by John O'Brien, of Still- 
water. J. G. Pyle, of St. Paul, succeeded Mr. Skinner and 
remained on the board until December, 1898. He was succeeded 
by A. B. Ovitt, of St. Paul, whose removal from the state again 
created a vacancy and for the short, unexpired term, the place 
was filled by George H. Gifford, of St. Paul, and Henry D. 
Stocker, Jr., of Minneapolis, successively. Mention should be 
made of Horace E. Barron, an old pioneer of Minnesota, who 
served as steward for the three schools for many years until 
the time of his death in February, 1892. 

In April, 1901, the board of control of state institutions con- 
sisting of, at that time, W. E. Lee, Long Prairie ; C. A. Morey, of 
Winona ; and S. W. Leavett, of Litchfield, took charge. An 
accident to Mr. Morey in May of that year, incapacitated him 
for work and he was compelled to resign the first of July, three 
months after his appointment, and the vacancy was filled by 
O. B. Gould, of Winona. 


Each succeeding session of the legislature since 1885 has 
provided in part to meet the large demand for admission that has 
constantly faced the institution. In 1890 the board purchased 
a tract of land, consisting of 190 acres, known as the "Gilmore 
Farm," which has since provided the garden produce and milk 
consumed by the institution population. 

In 1894, "Sunnyside" was first occupied as a distinct custodial 
or asylum building for those children unable to profit by school 
room training. The corresponding building, known as "Skinner 
Hall," was constructed in 1896 and named in honor of George 
E. Skinner, of St. Paul, a former trustee of the institution and 
whose influence had been exerted strongly in support of a better 
classification of the inmates, realized by the construction of these 

In 1900 the first building distinctively for epileptics was 
erected as the beginning of the epileptic colony, which now has 
five cottages devoted to the care pf this class of patients, in one 
of which a modern hydrotherapeutic equipment is installed and 
is in regular use in their treatment. 

The original administration building with the various addi- 
tions thereto since 1881 has been devoted to the work of school 

A corps of twenty teachers conduct a well organized school 
in which manual and industrial training are predominant features. 
For the girls there is training in netting, basketry, plain and 
fancy sewing as well as mending and darning, lace making, 
ironing, domestic work and gardening. And to the trained girls 
comes the opportunity to do work for which each has an 
aptitude. Such helpers, often quite independent, are found in 
the dressmaking and tailor shops, in mending room, kitchen and 
dining room, in the laundry and at the chicken ranch. 

While boys who are schooled in netting, basketry, sloyd 
work, mat braiding and sewing, and brush making later become 
valuable helpers in the care of their own departments about the 
institution, mattress and cabinet shops, the barn, laundry, green- 
house, garden, farm and dairy. 

In 1909 the board purchased for the school a colon)- farm in 
the town o