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3 1833 00826 5883 




Fig. 1.— Map of Miami River drainage area showing location of proposed 
retarding basins. 







In Three Volumes 

Volume I 





Edited by Hon. W. H. Shinn 

Prehistoric Earthworks 

Mound Builders in Miami Valley — Prehistoric Fortified Hill in Butler 
County — Butler County Pre-eminent in Antiquities — Smithsonian Insti- 
tution Report 17-25 

BUTLER COUNTY— Ancient Earthworks— Fortified Hill— McCor- 
mick Mound — Cochran Mound — Hofifman Group — Warwick Mound — 
Circular Enclosure on Big Miami — Group of Mounds in Ross Township 
— Meescopf and Cooper Mounds — Lamdon Mound — Schwarm Mound — 
Earthworks on Seven Mile Creek — Rolls of Cloth and Other Relics — 
Fortifications in Fairfield Township — Enclosure and Mound on Nine 
Mile Creek — Mounds and Enclosures on Big Miami — Mounds in Lib- 
erty Township — Group in Union Township — Ancient Fortifications 
Above Hamilton — Signal Mounds — General Descriptions Recorded 18-20 

HAMILTON COUNTY— Langdon Mound and Mound on Gould Farm 
— Ancient Cemetery Near Madisonville — Earthworks Near Milford — 
Ancient Works in Anderson Township — Enclosures in Sycamore Town- 
ship — Fortified Hill at Mouth of Great Miami — Mounds on Site of Cin- 
cinnati — Aboriginal Vault or Oven on Duck Creek — Old Roadway in 
Columbia Township 20-21 

MIAMI COUNTY — Mound on Corn Island — Earthworks and Mounds 
in Concord and Newton Townships — Embankment on Left Bank of 
Great Miami — Works on Site of Piqua — Mounds and Earthworks in 
Washington and Spring Creek Townships — Clay Tablets Found near 
Piqua— Graded Way at Piqua 21-22 

MONTGOMERY COUNTY— Flint Implements Found Near Center- 
ville — Earthworks Below Dayton — Stone Mound near Alexandersville — 
Enclosure South of Dayton — Ancient Works near Alexandersville — 
Great Mound at Miamisburg — Ancient Manufacturing Village near West 
Carrollton — Aboriginal Cemetery near Dayton 22 

SHELBY COUNTY— Mound in Northern Part of Van Buren Town- 
ship 22 

WARREN COUNTY— Fort Ancient, in Washington Township- 
Mounds in Franklin Township — Ancient Fortifications and Mounds near 
Foster's Crossing — Miamisburg Mound Second Most Important of Its 
Character in the United States — Fort Ancient Most Imposing of His- 
toric Fortifications of the Miami Valley — Description of Fort Ancient — 
Miami Valley well Within Glaciated Region of Ohio — Explorations — 
Status of Mound Builders 22-25 

Indians of the Miami Valley 

The Miamis — Their Principal Villages — Indian Conflicts — Territorial 
Claims of the Miamis in Ohio — A Record by General William Henry 
Harrison 25-26 


Settlements in. the Miami Valley 

Expedition of Henry Gist and Two Companions in 1751 — They Visit 
Towns of the Miamis — Expedition of Colonel Bird, from Canada, in 
1780 — Campaign of General George Rogers Clarke, in 1780 — First Block- 
houses — Expedition of General Benjamin Stites, in 1786 — Stites and 
Symmes Ask Congress for Land Grant Between the Two Miamis — 
Settlement Promoted — Town of Columbia Founded — Dedication of Cin- 
cinnati — Land Patent Issued to Symmes and His Associates — Treaty with 
the Indians — Founding of Losantiville and North Bend — Military Post 
Established — Fort Washington — County of Hamilton Established — In- 
ception of the City of Cincinnati — Indian Troubles — General Anthony 
Wayne Assumes Command — Fort Defiance Established — Indians Sup- 
pressed — Treaty of Greenville — Activities of Early Settlers — Colonization 
Enterprises — New Town of Turnerville — Settlement of Dayton — Prog- 
ress of Settlement — Land Speculations — Astonishing Immigration in 
Early Part of Nineteenth Century — Frontier Conditions — Early Day 
Cincinnati — New Counties Established — Roads Laid Out — General Ad- 
vancement and Development — Transportation Difficulties — Social Evolu- 
tion — The Great Kentucky Revival — Religious Activities — Pioneer 
Clergymen — The Miami Exporting Company — Early Commercial Con- 
ditions — Trade Conditions in Miami Valley During the War of 1812 — 
Initiation of the Steamboat Era — Hamilton County the First Settled in 
Miami Valley — Record of Settlement of Cincinnati — The North Bend 
Settlement — The Activities of Judge Symmes — Rivalry Between Set- 
tlements — Pioneer Hardships — Indian Depredations — Activities of Gov- 
ernment Troops — Arrival of General Wayne — The Wayne Campaign — 
Ludlow Lays Out Town of Hamilton — First Settlers — Hamilton Made 
County Seat of Butler County — First Court House — First Settlement 
in Warren County — Bedle's Station — Mount's Station — South Lebanon 
Oldest Town — Other Settlements — Townsite of Dayton Selected — The 
Town Laid Out — First Families at Dayton — Montgomery County Estab- 
lished — Dayton the County Seat — Dayton's Status During War of 1812 — 
Growth of Town — First Settlement in Miami County — First Apple Tree 
in the County — New Settlers Arrive — Early Mills — Settlement at Staun- 
ton — First Survey of Troy — First White Family in Shelby County — 
First Mill — Logan County's First Settlers — Blockhouse Stations During 
War of 1812 — Miami Valley Pioneers of Distinction — Othniel Looker — 
John Reily — Jeremiah Morrow — Daniel C. Cooper — William H. West — 
Thomas L. Young— John B. Weller— William C. Schenck— John W. 
Van Cleve — Edward Henry Knight — William Henry Harrison — John 
Woods 26- 


Edited by Prof. John E. Bradford 

Physiographical Influences in Colonization Activities — Dr. Drake's Ac- 
count of the Miami Valley— Rapid Influx of Settlers After War of 1812- 
15 — Census Comparisons — Chief Cities of the Valley 81-82 

Educational Status 100 Years Ago 

The Typical Pioneer Schoolhouse — Its Construction — Description of 
Building — Important Pioneer Schoolhouses — Description of Early 
Schools— Teachers 82-84 

Pioneer Schools 

John Reily Opens Subscription School at Columbia — First Schoolhouses 
in Cincinnati — First School in the Interior of the Miami Valley — Early 
Schools at Hamilton — Benjamin Van Cleve's School at Dayton — First 
School at Eaton — First Schoolhouse in Miami County — Early Schools 
in Darke County 85-87 


Pioneer Academies 

Beginning of More Comprehensive Educational System — Academies 
Established at Cincinnati, Dayton and Xenia — Mention of Leading Edu- 
cational Institutions in the Miami Valley in First Two Decades of Nine- 
teenth Century 87-88 

Founding of Miami University 

Grammar School of Miami University — Government Land Grant of En- 
tire Township for Academy or College — Committee Locates College 
Township in 1803 — Causes of Delay in Establishing of University — 
Rival Claims of Cincinnati 88-91 

Founding of Cincinnati College 

School Association Incorporated in 1807 — Record by Dr. Drake — Cin- 
cinnati College Founded in 1819 — Endowment Provisions — Rev. Elijah 
Slack First President — Rev. Philander Chase Becomes President in 1821 
— Memorials to the Ohio Legislature — University Remains at Oxford. . .91-92 

Grammar School of Miami University 

Miami University Evolving Into Real College — Buildings Erected at 
Oxford — University Opens in November, 1818 — First Teachers 93-94 

Other Pioneer Educational Institutions 

Founding of Medical College of Ohio — Members of Faculty — First Medi- 
cal College in the Miami Valley — Cincinnati Founds School of Literature 
and Arts — Dr. Drake's Account of the Organization — Summary of Cul- 
tural Activities at Close of Second Decade of Nineteenth Century 93-94 

Educational Development 

Marked Progress During Period from 1820 to 1837 — Ohio Establishes 
State System of Public Instruction — School Land Grants — Tax Levied 
for Support of Schools — Effects of School Tax Law — Cincinnati Public 
School System Organized in 1829 — Atwater's Record of Cincinnati 
Schools in 1837— Woodward College 95-97 

Provision of Better Text Books 

Efforts toward Co-ordination and Standardization of Text Books — 
Professor McGufifey's Contribution — The McGuffey Readers and Spellers 
— Dr. McGufifey's Great Service at Miami University 97-98 

Publication of School Books 

Early Newspapers — Cincinnati Presses Issue Twelve Books — ^Book Pub- 
lishing Expands at Cincinnati — Record of Development — List of Impor- 
tant Text Books 98-99 

Educational Experiments 

Introduction of Lancastrian System — The Ohio Mechanics' Institute — 
Records Concerning This Institution — Manual Labor Institution 
Founded at Dayton — Outcome of the Experiment — Farmers' College of 
Miami University in 1829 — Pleasant Hill Academy — Farmers' College of 
Hamilton County — Western Literary Institute and College of Profes- 
sional Teachers — Record of This Organization — Miami Valley Leads in 
Educational Progress in Ohio — The Academic Pioneer Issued— Western 
Academician and Journal of Education Makes Its Appearance — The Ohio 
Common School Director 99-103 


The College of Liberal Arts of Miami University 

Miami University Assumes Important Place — Record of Growth — 
Regime of Dr. Bishop as President — His Associates — University Gains 
High Rank 103-104 

Rise of Church Colleges 

Catholics Found the Athenaeum — St. Joseph's College at Cincinnati — 
St. Mary's at Dayton — Union Seminary Established Under Auspices of 
the African Methodist Episcopal Church — Present Institution for 
Colored Youth, at Tawawa Springs — Founding of Wittenberg College 
by the Lutherans — Urbana University Established — Founding of An- 
tioch College — Society of Friends to Establish Wilmington College. .104-105 

Theological Schools 

Theological Department Added to Miami University — Lane Theological 
Seminary — Xenia Theological Seminary — Other Theological Institu- 
tions 106 

Law Schools 

Law School of Cincinnati College Founded in 1833 — Brief Record Con- 
cerning the Institution 106-107 

Education of Women 

Cincinnati Female Academy — The Cincinnati Female College — Other 
Pioneer Institutions for the Education of Women — Oxford Female 
Academy — Description of the Institution — Hamilton and Rossville Fe- 
male Academy — The Western College for Women 111-112 

European Influences on Education 

Study of Foreign Languages Introduced — Immigrants' Friend Society 
and Its Work — Miami Gymnasium Association and Its History 112-113 

Effects of Civil War on Education 

Effect of War on Trend of Education — Professor Thwing's Estimate — 
Statistical Data — Legislation Affecting High School — The Rise and De- 
cline of the National Normal School at Lebanon — Miami University 
Loses Students from the South — Closing of the Institution — Reopening 
and Subsequent Growth — Outlook for the Future 114-119 

Dominance of Cincinnati in Educational Development of Ohio 

From the First Cincinnati Has Played Important Part — Cincinnati 
School Exhibits at the Centennial Exposition — Cincinnati University. 119-120 

Educational Pioneers 

Samuel Lewis — Milo G. Williams — Nathan Guilford — Robert Hamilton 
Bishop — William Holmes McGuffey — John W. Scott — Rufus King — 
Calvin E. Stowe — Joseph Ray — William Norris Edwards — Robert W. 
Steele — 'Samuel Galloway — Miami Valley's Contribution to Present-day 
Educational Service — Prominence of the Miami Valley in the Educa- 
tional Development of the State 120-125 


Edited by Hon. W. H. Shinn 

Conditions Prior to the War of 1812— Establishing of First Banks — 
The Miami Exporting Company Establishes First Bank in Ohio — Record 
of the Company — Farmers' & Mechanics' Bank Founded at Cincinnati in 
1813 — The Bank of Cincinnati Established in 1814 — Legislative Action 
Relative to Unauthorized Bank Paper — Lebanon-Miami Banking Com- 
pany — The Bank of Cincinnati — Little Miami Canal & Banking Company 
— The Bank of Hamilton Founded — Suspension of Specie Payment — 
Resultant Depreciation of Bank Notes^Second Bank of the United 
States — EflForts to Resume Specie Payments — Banks in West Lose Pop- 
ular Confidence — Chaotic Financial Conditions — Increase Number of 
Unauthorized Banks — Hostility to United States Bank — Low Prices of 
Staple Products — ^Condition of Miami Valley Banks at This Period — 
Congressional Powers and Action — The United States Bank Fight 
— Ohio Banks Accept Bonus Law — Financial Conditions in 1826-27 — 
Fluctuations in Values — The Ohio Life Insurance & Trust Company 
— Miami Exporting Company Revived — Miami Valley Banks in 1835 — 
Bank Commisioners Appointed by Legislature — Internal Improvements 
in Ohio — Attempts to Compel Specie Resumption — Conditions in 1842 — 
Expiration of Bank Charters — Cincinnati the Metropolis and Financial 
Center — Prices of Products in 1843-4-1 — Legislature Passes General 
Banking Law — Opposition to the New Law — Election of 1846 — Bank Cir- 
culation Nearly Doubled — Free Banking Law of 1851 — Extinction of 
Home Discounting — The State Bank of Ohio — Conditions in the Early 
'50s — Banking Provisions of New State Constitution — Failure of Ohio 
Life Insurance & Trust Company Precipitates Panic — Circulation of 
Ohio Banks Centralized in Cincinnati — Control of Exchange by Specu- 
lation — Cincinnati Becomes Monetary Center of the West — New Re- 
demption Agency Established at Cincinnati — Local Results of National 
Banking Law 126-155 

Edited by W. C. Culkins 

From Indian Trail to Aeroplane — Commercial Conditions and Transpor- 
tation Facilities of the Early Days — Development of Navigation Facili- 
ties — Internal Thoroughfares Constructed — Keel-boats on the Great 
Miami — Value of New Highways — Military Roads — Old National Road 
— Development of Canals — The Miami Canal and Its Influence — Canal 
Decadence Attends Building of Railroads — Miami & Erie Canal — Steam- 
boat Navigation Instituted on the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers — Modern 
improvements in Ohio Navigation — Limitations of River and Canal 
Transportation — Erie & Kalamazoo Railroad — Mad River & Lake Erie 
Railroad — First Railroads in the Miami Valley — Franklin, Springboro 
& Wilmington Railway — Cincinnati & St. Louis Railroad — Chillicothe 
& Lebanon Railroad — Other Early Railroad Corporations — The Little 
Miami Railroad — Description of Line and Its Operation — Cincinnati, 
Hamilton & Dayton Railroad — Eaton & Richmond Railroad — The Louis- 
ville & Nashville Line — Building of Narrow-gauge Lines — Development 
of Interurban Railroad Systems — First Lines in Vicinity of Dayton — 
The Cincinnati & Hamilton Interurban — The Cincinnati, Georgetown 
& Portsmouth — Interurban Railway & Terminal Company — The Cincin- 
nati & Columbus — General View of Interurban Transportation in Miami 
Valley — Influence of the Automobile — The Good Roads Movement — 
Avoid Undue Optimism 156-168 


Edited by Judge John C. Hover 

Aspect of the County 100 Years Ago — White Men and Indians Dispute 
Dominion — The "Wabash Expedition" of General Clarke — Punitive Ex- 
pedition against Shawanoes Stronghold — Daniel Boone and Simon 
Kenton Lead Troops — Result of Conflicts — Campaign Led by Colonel 
Benjamin Logan — Final Act of the Tragic Drama of the Indian — Battle 
of Fallen Timbers — Indians Loyal to Terms of Treaty of Greenville. .169-172 

The Dawn of Peace 

Indians Return to Old Haunts — White Settlement Slow — Indian Towns 
Re-established — White Captives Reared by Indians — Record of Various 
Captives — Interesting Story of Isaac Zane's Life in Captivity — James 
McPherson Resident of Logan County in 1800 — Record of the Family — 
Robert Robitaille's Trading Post — Simon Kenton Comes Back — Mar- 
garet Moore, White Wife of Blue Jacket — Their Son Joseph and Daugh- 
ter Nancy — A Semi-tragic Romance 172-177 

The Day of the Settler 

Logan County Had Magnificent Natural Resources — An Inviting Place 
for Settlement — Joe Sharp and His Family Arrive, as the First Over- 
land Immigrants, on Christmas Day of 1801 — Discovery of Bee Trees — 
First Corn Planted — First Orchard in Logan County — Record of the 
Sharp Family — Daniel Antrim First White Boy Born in the County — 
Settlement Advances — True Pioneer Spirit — Zane's Town — Record Con- 
cerning Zane Family — Sharp's Mill — William McColloch's Mill — Mc- 
Colloch Killed in War of 1812 — First Free School in Logan County — 
Samuel McColloch and His Benignant Influence — Interesting Data In- 
cidental to Election of 1806 in Logan County — Romance of Career of 
Jonathan Chapman, "Johnny Appleseed" — Chapman a Quaint Charac- 
ter — Bronze Memorial Tablet 177-184 

Logan County Formed 

New County Separated from Champaign — Temporary Seat of Justice — 
Fixing of Boundaries — County Named in Honor of General Benjamin 
Logan — Popular Error as to Origin of Name of County 184-185 

COUNTY SEAT— Various Offers of Sites— A Site Selected— Belle- 
fontaine Made Name of County Seat — Origin of the Name — The Town 
Laid Out — Sale of Lots — Earliest Settlers — First Tavern — First Brick 
Building— Other Buildings of Early Days 185-187 

PUBLIC BUILDINGS— Temporary Courthouse— Church Services Held 
in This Building — First Jail — Erection of Permanent Courthouse — Court- 
house Used for Varied Purposes — Old Courthouse Becomes Tavern- 
Other Taverns Opened 187-189 

Hotels — General Growth of Bellefontaine 

Social Life Centers in Old Taverns— Walter Slicer's Old Hotel— The 
"Union House" — Captain John B. Miller a True Patriot — Building of the 
Hotel Logan — Its History — The Hotel Ingalls — Business and Home 
Building Advances — Early Mercantile Establishments at Bellefontaine — 
First Railroad Train Arrives in Bellefontaine — Great Fire of 1856— Con- 
tinued Grovv^th — Additions to the City — Initiation of System of Fire 
Protecton — The City Building — Present Municipal Officers — Melodeon 
Hall — Bellefontaine a "Good Show Town" — Wave of Improvement Be- 
gins in 1875 — The Opera Block — A Record of Modern Buildings — The 
Carnegie Library — The New Postofifice Building — Street Improvements 
— Fine Municipal Improvements and Public Utilities of Present Day — 
Beautiful Cemetery Developed — Brown Park — Rutan Park — Bright 
Auguries for the Future 189-199 


The Logan County Bar 

First Court Held — No Resident Lawyer — Pioneer Lawyers Traveled the 
Circuits — Burdens and Problems Rest on the New County — Prominent 
Ohio Lawyers Who Appeared in Logan County Courts in Early Days — 
William Bayles First Resident Lawyer — Anthony Casad Came in 1826 — 
Hiram McCartney — ^Samuel Walker — Henry M. Shelby — Isaac Smith 
and George H. Nieman — Richard S. Canby — Benjamin Stanton — C. W. 
B. Allison — Joseph H. Lawrence — John M. Lawrence — James Kernan, 
Sr. — James Kernan, Jr. — James Walker — James B. McLaughlin — J. Dun- 
can McLaughlin — N. G. Johnston — Thomas H. Wright — Sidney B. 
Foster — Henry C. Dickinson — William W. Beatty — R. N. Jordan — 
George W. Emerson — Captain Harold B. Emerson — James W. Steen — 
Milton Steen — John Reese — James A. Oder — John O. Sweet — William 
A. West — Samuel H. West — John E. West — Johnson E. West — Robert 
P. Kennedy — Emanuel J. Howenstine — John R. Cassidy — William B. 
Ramsey — Joseph C. Briggs — P. N. Stewart — Major Edward K. Camp- 
bell — Alexander Jay Miller — William Wallace Riddle — Thomas M. Shea 
— Jacob J. McGee — Hamilton Brothers — Hugh H. Newell — E. P. Cham- 
berlin — Dow Aikin — John P. Bower — M. R. Brown — Elmer L. Goodwin 
— Lewis F. Hale — John S. Huston — Forrest G. Long — S. J. Southard — 
Frank DeFrees — Marion G. Bell — Thomas L. Moore — Ben. S. Johnson 
— W. Clay Huston— Walter S. Plum— P. M. Keller— Edward Kellison— 
N. G. Hahn — Ernest Thompson — The Court Reporter, R. Eva Byers — 
County Officials — County Commissioners — Characteristic Incident in 
Pioneer Courthouse 199-210 

Courts of Logan County 

Majestic Figures on Bench in Earlier Years — Orvis Parrish First Presid- 
ing Judge — Associate Judges — Probate Court Established — Judge Ben- 
jamin Metcalf First Judge of Common Pleas Court Under New Consti- 
tution — Hon. William Lawrence, A. M. LL. D. — Judge William N. West 
— Judge John A. Price — Judge Duncan Dow — Judge John C. Hover. .210-218 

The Logan County Press 

The Logan County Gazette — The Hubbard Brothers — The Examiner — 
The Republican — The Mac-a-chack Press — The Bellefontaine Press — 
The Index— The Index-Republican 219-223 


First Roads Followed Old Indian Trails — Development of Highways — 
First Ohio Railroad Traversed Logan County — Locally Known as 
"Mad River Railroad" — Now a Part of the Big Four System — The C, C. 
& I. Railroad — The Bellefontaine & Delaware Railroad — The Detroit, 
Toledo & Indiana Railway — The Toledo & Ohio Central Railway — St. 
Mary's Branch of Toledo & Ohio Central 223-224 

Logan County in the World War 

Various Patriotic Activities — Best Logan County Talent Enlisted in 
Ranks of "War Workers" — Liberty Loan Campaigns and Their Logan 
Executives 224-225 

THE LOANS — The First Liberty Loan and Its Support in Logan 
County — Second and Third Loans — The Fourth Liberty Loan — The 
Women's Committee — Bellefontaine's Record — Splendid Aid of the 
Women — The Logan County Draft Board — Registrations — War Savings 
Stamp Campaign — War Chest Drive 225-228 

— Remarkable Inception of Logan County Chapter — Clara Barton's 
Tribute to Judge William Lawrence — Work of Miss Elizabeth Haviland 
— Initial Meeting of Chapter — Organization Perfected — Splendid Record 
of Practical Achievement — Those Prominent in Work of the Logan 
County Chapter 228-233 


The Medical Profession 

Honor Due to Pioneer Physicians — The Conditions Which They Faced 
— Logan County's Bright Page of Professional History — Mrs. Phoebe 
Sharp — Dr. John Elbert — Dr. Benjamin Stanton Brown — Dr. James 
Crew — Dr. Abie! Hovey Lord — Dr. Joseph Canby — Dr. Canby's Pro- 
fessional Contemporaries — Dr. S. W. Fuller — Dr. Thomas L. Wright — 
Dr. David Watson— Dr. W. D. Scarfif— Dr. Edwin Pratt— Dr. J. M. 
Wilson — Drs. Perry D. Covington and William H. Cretcher — Dr. Rutter 
— Dr. James Paulding Wallace — Dr. John Saxton Deemy — Dr. Robert 
G. Reed — Present Members of Logan County Medical Association — 
Dentists Now in Practice — Dr. J. W. Arbergast — Hospitals in Belle- 
fontaine — The Mary Rutan Hospital 233-239 

The Churches of Bellefontaine 

Pioneer Religious Activities and Their Influence — Solidarity and Har- 
mony of Present-day Church Work — The Methodist Episcopal Church 
— The First Presbyterian Church — The English Lutheran Church — St. 
Patrick's Catholic Church — The Baptist Church — The First Christian 
Church — Associate Reformed Church — The Episcopal Church — The Re- 
formed Presbyterian Church — The Church of the Brethren 239-245 

Fraternal, Patriotic, Civic and Philanthropic Organizations 

Secret and Other Fraternal Orders — Women's Christian Temperance 
Union — Logan County Soldiers in the Civil War — Grand Army Post — 
Women's Relief Corps — Sons of Veterans — Order of the King's Daugh- 
ters and Sons — Daughters of the American Revolution — City Federation 
of Women's Clubs — Woman's Franchise League — Railroad Young Men's 
Christian Association — Knights of Columbus 245-250 


Early Industrial and Mercantile Enterprises at Bellefontaine — Present- 
day Industries of the City — Industries of the County at Large — Finan- 
cial Institutions of Bellefontaine — Building and Loan Companies — 
Bellefontaine Chamber of Commerce 250-259 


The Pioneer Log Schoolhouse — The Story of the Rural Schools — 
Village and Centralized Schools — General Review of Educational Work 
in the County 259-268 


BELLE CENTER— The Town Has Lively History All Its Own- 
Record of Growth and Advancement — Business Enterprises — Physi- 
cians of Belle Center — Newspapers 268-273 

HUNTSVILLE— Eligible Location of the Town— Early History- 
Present Status — Other Villages and Hamlets — Lakeview and Other 
ResortS' — History of the Lake Townships — ^^Pioneer Grist Mills — Church 
Records of the Cherokee District — Development of Huntsville — Further 
Record Concerning Huntsville 273-280 

LEWISTOWN — Central Point of Historic Interest in Upper Miami 
Region — Outline of Early History of This Section — Village of Lewis- 
town Platted in 1835 — First Store — First Schoolhouse — Early Mills — 
Pioneers and Their Descendants — Church History — Coming of the 
Railroad — First Doctors — Present Business Enterprises 280-284 

The State Dam and Indian Lake — Harrison and Union Townships — 
Genesis and Growth of the Children's Home in Logan County — Silver 
Lake as a Pleasure Resort — Twin Lakes — DeGraff and Logansville — 
Early History of Southwest Part of Logan County — The Logansville 
District— Pioneers— The Town of Quincy— Its Present Status 280-292 


DE GRAFF — Development Begins in 1826 — Arrival of William Boggs — 
Railroad Comes — Town Laid Out — History and Present Conditions of 
the Village— An Attractive and Modern Little City 292-295 

TOWNS OF THE SCIOTO SLOPE— Original Settlements— Differ- 
ences in Soil and Water Supply — Becomes Center for Manufacturing of 
Maple Sugar — Prominent Pioneers — Indians Linger — Early Mills — 
Village of Middleburg Founded — Rapid GroM^th of Town — Religious 
and Business Activities — First Tannery — First Frame House — First 
Cookstove — Counterfeiters Operate in This Wild Country — Oldest 
Church — Other Churches Established — -Grange Movement Vigorous — 
The Township Hall at Middleburg — Middleburg of Today — Early Mills 
— Construction of Roads — Early Industrial and Mercantile Enterprises 
— Religious Organizations — East Liberty — North Greenfield — East Lib- 
erty Today — Pioneer Review Continued — Old Sandusky Road — Rush- 
sylvania and Its History — Inception and Growth of Big Springs — The 
Town of Harper — Continued Record of Pioneers — West Mansfield 
Platted— Its History 295-312 

WEST LIBERTY— Town Surveyed and Platted in 1817— Condition in 
1820 — 'Record of Development — Civic Progress and Business Growth — 
Present Conditions — West Liberty an Important Town of the County 
Today — Review of Civic and Business Activities — Donn and Abram 
Saunders Piatt — Brilliant Career of Colonel Donn Piatt — Legends of 
Interest— Pickrelltown and Its History 312-324 

A VALLEY OF MEMORIES— "Back to Scenes of Beauty"— Zanes- 
field's Romantic History — An Interesting Survey of Its History — Once 
a Valley of Mills — Zanesfield in Past and Present 312-331 


Edited by Judge Joseph D. Barnes 

Topographical Data — Once a Dense Forest — The Indians — Indians 
Migrate From Canada — Enmities Inspired by Rival Traders — French 
and English Contest Claims — Indians Led to Battle — The Langdale 
Raid — Trading Post of Peter Loramie — Punitive Expedition of General 
George Rogers Clarke — Tragic Death of Colonel John Hardin — 
Wayne's "Legion" Pushes Up the Valley of the Great Miami — Strong- 
holds Established — Fort Recovery — Fort Piqua and Fort Loramie — 
Fort Loramie's Stategic Importance — Early Settlement Retarded by 
Indian Hazards— James Thatcher the First Settler— Other Settlers 
Come — Permanent Peace Promotes Rapid Immigration — Shelby County 
Created in 1919 — Origin of Name — Organization of the County — Hardin 
Designated First Seat of Justice— First Court Convenes — Officials Chosen 
— Sidney Made the County Seat — Platting and Settlement of the Town 
— The Public Square — Sale of Lots — Temporary Courthouse — Survey of 
Public Highways Instituted — First Courthouse and Jail — New Court- 
house Completed in 1833— Third and Fourth County Jails — The Present 
Courthouse 332-347 

Bench and Bar in Shelby Coxinty 

Admirable Pioneer Lawyers — Personnel of the First Court— First Case 
on Criminal Docket — Judge Samuel Marshall First Resident Lawyer — 
Judge Patrick Gaines Goode — 'Judge Jacob S. Conklin — Judge Hugh 
Thompson — J. S. UpdegraflF — Edmund Smith — Silas B. Walker — Adolph 
J. Rebstock — General James Murray — John H. Mathers — Hugh Thomp- 
son Mathers — John E. Cummins — Nathan R. Burress — Colonel Harrison 
Wilson — John E. McCullough — George A. Marshall — John Milton 
Staley— John G. Stephenson— Judge W. D. Davies — J. Wilson Conklin 


— S. J. Hatfield— Emery L. Hoskins— S. L." Wicoff— Judge Harvey H. 
Needles — David Oldham — Harry and John Oldham — James E. Way — 
Andrew J. Hess — Charles R. Hess — Hon. J. E. Russell — Joseph C. 
Royon — Hugh Doorley — Frank J. Doorley — John Quinlin — Robert E. 
and Charles C. Marshall— Logan W. Marshall— Charles C. Hall— D. F. 
Mills — Harry K. Forsythe — Hugh Bingham — Samuel J. Hetzler — Emer- 
son V. Moore — Percy R. Taylor — Judge Joseph D. Barnes — Summary 
of Legal History of the County 348-361 

The Medical Profession 

Dr. Pratt Sidney First Recorded Physician — Dr. William Fielding and 
His Benignant Influence — Dr. Park Beeman — Dr. John C. Leedom — 
Dr. H. S. Conklin— Dr. Wilson V. Cowan— Dr. Albert Wilson— Dr. 
Stephen C. Hussey— Dr. John L. Miller— Dr. D. R. Silver— Dr. Henry E. 
Beebe — Dr. Hugh McDowell Beebe — Dr. Frank D. Anderson — Dr. 
W. D. Frederick— Dr. S. G. Goode— Dr. B. M. Sharp— Dr. Cyrus E. 
Johnston— Dr. A. W. Reddish— Dr. A. W. Hobby— Dr. J. C Ferree— 
Dr. August Gudenkauf— Dr. J. W. Costolo— Dr. Flint Hubbell— Dr. John 
Franklin Connor — Drs. O. O. and Vernon LeMaster — Dr. W. Judd Conk- 
lin — Dr. H. A. Tobey — Dr. Lester C. Pepper — Dr. A. W. Grosvenor — 
Dr. Millard F. Hussey— Dr. J. W. Millholland— Dr. J. D. Geyer— 
Dr. Kidder and Dr. Werth — Dr. Arthur Silver — Osteopathic Practi- 
tioners — The Representatives of the Dental Profession — Resume Inci- 
dental to Death of Dr. William Gaines — Other Physicians Practicing 
in the County 361-369 


Pioneer Beginnings — Schools Here from Earliest Days — Early Private 
Schools at Sidney — First Free Schools at Sidney — The Sidney Male 
and Female Academy — Other Early Sidney Schools and Teachers — 
Schools at Dingmansburg and East Sidney — Union School System Es- 
tablished in 1857 — Catholic Parochial School Opened — Separate School 
for Colored Children Established in 1878 — Early Bequests for Support 
of Educational Work — First Union School Building at Sidney — Old 
Building Still in Use — Review of History of Sidney Public Schools — 
First High School Class Graduated — Succeeding Classes — Development 
of Ward Schools at Sidney — New High School Building — The Athletic 
Field — The Sidney Schools Today — List of Presidents of Sidney Board 
of Education — The County System of Schools — High Schools in the 
County — Present School Census 369-381 

The Press 

Thomas Smith First Editor at Sidney — The Sidney Journal — The Ohio 
Argus and Sidney Aurora — Review of an Early Copy of the Aurora — 
The Sidney Banner — The Sidney Journal — William Binkley and His 
Work — The Sidney Gazette — The Republican Publishing Company — 
Daily Papers — Sidney Journal Continues — First Democratic Paper at 
Sidney — The Democratic Yeoman — The Shelby County Democrat — ■ 
Paper Has Somewhat Erratic History — McGonigal & Lewis Assume 
Control — Sidney Daily News — Those Who Have Been Prominent in 
Sidney Journalism — Mrs. Horace Holbrook — The Sidney Printing & 
Publishing Company — The Valley Sentinel — The Anzeiger — The Jack- 
son Center News — Record of Other Newspaper Ventures 381-387 

Public Buildings and Institutions 

THE POSTOFFICE AT SIDNEY— First Postoffice in Temporary 
Courthouse — Subsequent Locations of the Postoffice — The New Federal 
Building — Present Executive Corps of the Office 387-388 

THE ORPHANS' HOME— A Noble Institution— Ideal Situation— Ex- 
cellent Buildings — Equipment and General Facilities — Care of the Little 
Wards of the Home — The Dairy — Sanitary Provisions — The Teachers 
—The Farm 388-391 


THE COUNTY FARM AND INFIRMARY— Established in 1866— 
First Board of Infirmary Directors — Building Erected — The Infirmary 
Today — Equipment and Service 391 

CEMETERIES— The Charles Starrett Burial Plots— Catholic Cemetery 
Established — New Cemetery Opened in 1867 — Graceland Cemetery 
Today— Superintendents 392-393 

THE MONUMENTAL BUILDING— A Memorial to Shelby County 
Heroes of the Civil War — Inception and Progress of Movement to Erect 
the Building — Structure Unique in Architecture and Uses — General De- 
scription of Building — Its History 393-395 

ganized in 1869 — Fund for Purchase of Books — First Location — The 
Lyceum — Transferred to Trustees of Monumental Building — Books in 
Storage About Seven Years — Present Condition of the Library — Its 
Control and Its Service — The Intellectual Center of the Town 395-396 

HOSPITALS IN SIDNEY— Little Emergency Hospital— The Origi- 
nators — The Blue Bird Club and Its Work for the Institution — Present 
Equipment and Service — Prospect of New Hospital 396-397 

The Shelby County Agricviltural Association 

Organized in 1839— First County Fair in 1840— The Fair of 1841— Hiatus 
of Ten Years — Reorganization and Resumption — Fairs for Five Con- 
secutive Years — Association and Annual Fairs Become Fixed Insti- 
tutions — Officers of Original Society — Reorganization in 1860— 
Shelby County Agricultural Institute and Its First Officers — The Fair 
Grounds, Buildings and General Equipment of Present Day — Shelby 
County Fair One of Most Successful in the State 397-398 

Banks and Banking in Shelby County 

Traditions Misty on Subject of First Bank — John W. Carey Estab- 
lishes Bank at Sidney — The Carey Bank Building Still Standing — Bank 
of Hugh McElroy — First National Bank of Sidney — Brief History of 
the Institution — The German-American Bank — The Citizens' Bank — 
First National Exchange Bank — Its New Building — The Citizens' 
National Bank — Shelby County Building and Loan Association — 
People's Savings and Loan Association — Its New Building — Description 
of This Beautiful Structure — Z. T. Lewis Establishes Bank at Anna — 
Farmers' and Merchants' Bank of Jackson Center — First National Bank 
of Jackson Center — Shelby County Bank at Botkins — The Loramie 
Banking Company — The Farmers' and Merchants' Bank at Anna — ■ 
Financial Career of a Shelby County Boy, Milton E. Ailes 398-407 

The Smaller Towns 

yillages that Failed to Materialize — Rural Hamlets — Changing Condi- 
tions — Village of Pemberton — Maplewood — Jackson Center — Montra — 
Port Jefferson— The Turtle Creek Valley— The Village of Hardin— An 
Indian Graveyard — History of Hardin — Mount Jefferson, North and 
South Houston — ^Bunker Hill Church — Green Lake — Dawson Station 
— Russia the Center of a French Settlement — Rural Churches — New- 
port — Historic Spot Near Fort Loramie — The Fort Loramie Country — 
The Present Village of Fort Loramie — Kettlerville — Rumley — Botkins 
— Anna — Swanders — Towns that Failed to Develop — Lockington — Kirk- 
wood — First Settlers in Southeastern Part of County — Plattsville and 
New Palestine — Ballou — Pasco — Largest Single Boulder in Ohio — 
Genesis and Growth of Sidney — Interesting Historical Review — Present 
Status of the County Seat — Beautiful Homes — Fraternal Organizations 
at Sidney— Sidney's Political Life 407-435 


War Activities in Shelby County 

Report of Shelby County Draft Board — Members of the Board — Public 
Demonstration of Farewell to Shelby County Soldiers — The County 
Gold Star Roster Has Thirty-three Names — Names and Brief Records of 
These Heroes — Personnel of Shelby County Memorial Association — 
Shelby County Campaigns in the Various War Drives — Grand Rally Day 
at Sidney — A Remarkable Demonstration — Address by Governor Cox — 
Description of the Occasion 435-444 

THE FIVE WAR LOANS— Liberty Loan Committee— Campaign for 
First Liberty Loan — The Council of Defense — Nothing Neglected. .444-445 

WOMAN'S WORK— Resume of Splendid War Activities of the Women 
of Sidney and the County in General — The Various Organizations of the 
Women of the County — City Federation of Women's Clubs — The Con- 
stituent Membership — Red Cross Work of the Federation — Business 
Girls' Association of Sidney 445-453 


MILLS AND WAREHOUSES— Early-day Sawmills— Some Pioneer 
Grist Mills Figure Also as Distilleries — The Maxwell Mills — Whiskey 
and Gin Output in County — Another Old Mill — Early Power Pro- 
visions — Ruins of Two Old Mills Near Sidney — Early Mills and Ware- 
houses at Sidney — "Old Stone Bridge" Warehouse — Farmers' Grain & 
Milling Company — Early and Later Mill Operators — The Sidney Steam 
Elevator — An Early Distillery at Sidney — The Maxwell Mill-pond — 
The Sidney Grain Company — Present Mills and Warehouses — Pioneer 
Weaving Factory at Dingmansburg — Pioneer Pottery — An Early Flax 
Mill — Present Day Industrial Enterprises 453-458 

TANNING — Pioneer Conditions Demand Tanneries — Early Tanneries 
at Sidney — Tanneries on Farms — The Present Sidney Tanning Com- 
panj' — Early Day Tannery Processes — Present Tannery One of Sidney's 
Leading Industrial Institutions 458-462 

WOODWORKING — Pioneer Woodworking Establishments at Sidney 
— Shop of Caleb Nutt — John Sharp's Gunsmithy — Rupert Wagon Shop 
— Sharrit Pump Works — Rench Wagon Works — Piper Wagon Works — 
Miller Carriage Company — Bimel Carriage Factory — Crozier Carriage 
Manufactory — Spoke and Wheel Works — The Benjamin Handle Fac- 
tory — The Sidney Planing Mill — William Klipstine Lumber Company 
— Anderson-Frazier Wheel Works — American Wheel Company — The 
Sidney Manufacturing Company — Tucker Bending Works — ^Mull Wood 
Work Company — Buckeye Churn Company — Commercial Pole and 
Shaft Company — Pioneer Pole and Shaft Company — Underwood Whip 
Company — Shop of James Van Gorder 462-468 

STEEL AND IRON— Pioneer Blacksmiths— Daniel Toy— Early Plow 
Works — Pioneer Stove Foundries — Philip Smith Foundry and Machine 
Works — Sidney Agricultural Implement Company — Sidney Elevator 
Manufacturing Company 468-472 

HOLLOW WARE — The Wagner Manufacturing Company — Sidney 
Machine Tool Company — Monarch Manufacturing Company — Peerless 
Bread Machine Company — Sidney Power Press Company — Eclipse 
Folding Machine Company — The Mentges Newspaper and Job Fold- 
ing Machines 472-477 

THE STEEL SCRAPER— Shelby County Produces First Steel Road 
Scraper — Benjamin Slusser the Inventor — The Slusser-McLean Com- 
pany — American Steel Scraper Works — Sidney Steel Scraper Company 
— War Manufacturing in Shelby County 477-481 

CONFECTIONERS— The C. F. Hickok Factory— The Cherry Cheer 
Company — The Venus Chocolate Company — Sidney Candy Com- 
pany 481-484 


THE CIGAR INDUSTRY— Sidney's First Cigar Factory— The Diesel- 
Wemmer Company — The Knauer Cigar Company 484 

BREWING — Brewery Traditions — The Wagner Brewery — Present 
Wagner Beverage Company — End of Saloon Era 484-485 

MISCELLANEOUS— The Yenney Pork House— Broom Manufactur- 
ing — The "Mary L." Poultry Plant — The Sidney Knitting Mills Com- 
pany — Lime Manufacturing — Sidney Cement Stone Company 485-486 

Tribute to B. P. Wagner — Wagner Park Conservatories and Their In- 
fluence 486-488 

The Churches of Sidney 

Pioneer Religious Activities — Presbyterian Church Organized — History 
of This Church — Record of Methodist Episcopal Church at Sidney — St. 
John's Evangelical Lutheran Church — Catholic Church Services Initi- 
ated — Church of the Holy Angels — Dunkard Church — The Baptist 
Church — The Christian Connection, or "New Lights" — The Church of 
Christ — The United Brethren — The Christian Science Society — Mount 
Vernon Baptist Church — St. Paul's Evangelical Church — Early Services 
of the Episcopal Church— St. Mark's Parish 489-494 

Edited by Judge Walter D. Jones 

Its History as an Integral Part of the Miami Valley — Indian Occupancy 
— The Algonquin Tribe — ^Name Miamis Applied by the French — Divided 
Allegiance to French and English — Miamis Harassed by the English — 
Their Removal from the Miami Valley — The Shawanoes — Early At- 
tempts at White Settlement — French and English Dispute Supremacy 
— Report of Christopher Grist — French Control of Trade in 1749 — Rival 
French and English Claims — Indian Treaty of 1753 — Expedition of Gen- 
eral George Clarke in 1780 — Disastrous Defeat of the Shawanoes — They 
Move to the Great Miami — Shawanoes Make Raids in Kentucky — Re- 
prisals by General Clark and his "Long Knives" — Clarke's Forces 
Advance Into the Interior and up the Great Miami — Preparations for 
Pow-wow — White Woman Recaptured from the Indians — Piqua Towns 
Deserted by the Indians — Skirmish with the Indians — Death of Captain 
McCracken — ^Abraham Thomas and Captain Barbee Settle in Miami 
County — Indians Thoroughly Subdued — General Clarke Idealized by 
the Pioneers — Last Great Campaign Against the Indians — Expedition 
of General Anthony Wayne — Battle of Fallen Timbers — The Treaty of 
Greenville — Effected in 1795 — Monument Commemorating the Event — 
Bravery of Me-sa-sa, the Indian Chief — Indians Lose Title to Lands — 
The John Cleves Symmes' Purchase Marks Beginning of Real Settlement 
— Vanguard of Great Army of Pioneers Begins to Pour In — General 
Dayton and Others Settle in Vicinity of Dayton — Samuel Morrison and 
David H. Morris Among First Settlers in Miami County — Permanent 
Settlement Founded — Town Named Livingston — Other Early Settlers — 
Pioneer Activities — Grist Mills and Saw Mills Established — Pioneer 
Trading by Exchange System — Names of Settlers in Miami County up 
to and Including 1807 495-500 

County Seat 

Seat of Justice Established at Staunton — First Session of Court in 
1807 — First Judges — Proceedings of the Court — Record of Subsequent 
Court Sessions — Seat of Justice Defined — Court Session at Troy — New 
Courthouse Started in 1815 500-503 


Courthouse War 

Troy and Piqua Vie in Claims for Location of County Seat — Inter- 
mittent Warfare Over County Seat Lasted More Than Seventy-five 
Years — Old-time Feud Again Awakened When Present Courthouse Was 
Proposed — Rival Claims Presented Before Ohio Legislature — Legis- 
lative Enactment in Favor of Troy — Cordial Relations Established After 
Settlement of Courthouse Question 503 

Early Transportation in Miami County 

Pioneer Ferry at Troy — Tolls Charged 503 

Service in 1819 — Captains of the New Fleet — Sinking of One of the 
Boats — The Maiden Voyage — Death of Mrs. Fielding Loury — The Navi- 
gation Venture a Financial Failure 503-504 

THE MIAMI CANAL — Tremendous Service of This Waterway — Con- 
tributed to Development and Progress — Present Revival of Waterway 
Transportation — Looking to Development of Canals in 1818 — Legisla- 
tive Action — Commissioners Appointed — Favorable Report of the Com- 
mission — Act of Legislature Authorizes Procuring of Funds for Con- 
struction of Canal Connecting the Ohio River and the Great Lakes — 
Permanent Board of Canal Commissioners Organized — Work of Con- 
struction Initiated July 4, 1826 — First Boats from Cincinnati to Dayton 
in 1829 — Efforts of Colonel John Johnston to Extend Canal North — 
His Influence in Promoting the Extension as a Benefit to Miami 
County — Route Selected — Public Sale of Canal Lands at Piqua Land 
Office — Local Contractors Who Aided in Construction of the Canal 
Extension — July 4, 1837, Marked by Great Celebration at Piqua — 
Occasion Is Opening of Miami Canal to Traffic — The Canal Served 
People of Miami County for Many Years — Construction Justified 504-505 

County Schools 

First School Organized in 1813, at Troy — Early Teachers — "The 
Academy" and Its Work — Remarkable Educational Development — 
Splendid Institutions of Present Day 505-506 

SUPERVISION — County Proud of Its System of Supervision of 
Schools — Districts — Teachers — Rural Schools — Improved Methods 506 

NORMAL TRAINING— County Normal School Established in 1914— 
Its Successful Work — Excellent System of Control — Institution an 
Important Adjunct of Educational Work of County 506-507 

HIGH SCHOOL— High Standard Maintained— Liberal Courses- 
Agriculture and Domestic Science 507 

CENTRALIZATION— Three Centralized Schools in Operation— Each 
Has First-Grade High School — Four More Townships Have Voted to 
Centralize — The System Is Proving More Successful — County Has One 
of the Largest and Best Rural Schools in Ohio — Descrpition of This 
School and Its Work 507-509 

Early Banking 

Old State Banks Outgrow Their Usefulness — Wildcat Banking — Early 
Bank Failures — Piqua National Bank Established in 1847 — First National 
Bank of Troy Established in 1863 — Miami County Bank Succeeded by 
the Troy National Bank 509 

Miami County Journalism 

Lack of News Vehicles Prior to 1820 — William R. Barrington Estab- 
lishes First Newspaper in Miami County 509-510 



Wonderful Development in Science and Practice of Medicine and Sur- 
gery — Pioneer Physicians at Piqua — Pioneer Practitioners at Troy — 
Miami County Medical Society and Its Members — Service of Miami 
County Physicians in Connection with the World War 510-511 

Miami County Dental Association 

Included in Western Ohio Dental Association and Ohio Dental Asso- 
ciation — Western Division Includes Miami, Darke and Shelby Coun- 
ties — Piqua Designated as Place of Meetings — Present Officers 511 

Miami County Bar Association 

Original Organization Falls Into Decadence — Organization of Present 
Association — Incidents of Association's Meeting and Banquet at 
Piqua 511-512 


BROWN TOWNSHIP— Early Settlers— Blockhouse Erected for 
Protection Against Indians — Settlers After the War of 1812 — First 
Blacksmith Shop and First Saw Mill — Methodists Early Held Meet- 
ings — Itinerant Baptist Clergymen Appear — First Schoolhouse and the 
Teachers in the Same 512-513 

SPRING CREEK TOWNSHIP— John Hilliard Makes First Land 
Entry — French Trading Store Previously Established — Other Early 
Land Entries — First White Couple Married in the Township — Their Son 
the First White Child Born in the Township — James McKinney Erects 
Grist Mill in 1808— Samuel Wiley Builds Dam and Saw Mill in 1815— 
First Schoolhouse and First Blacksmith Shop 513 

UNION TOWNSHIP— Names of Those Who Early Made Land En- 
tries in the Township — Pioneer Representatives of the Society of 
Friends — Manufacturing Industries of the Pioneer Days — "Friends" 
Meeting House — First School 513-514 

NEWTON TOWNSHIP— Michael Williams and His Family Arrive in 
1801— Other Early Settlers— First School— First Church Erected— 
Open-air Meetings of the "Friends" 514 

CONCORD TOWNSHIP— Names of Settlers of First Decade of Nine- 
teenth Century — Early Religious Services — Baptists Organize a Church 
— Abraham Thomas Opens Blacksmith Shop — Other Pioneer Settlers. . .514 

STAUNTON TOWNSHIP— French Traders Here Before Actual 
White Settlement — Peter Felix and His Indian Trading Store — First 
Land Entries — Early Day Industrial Enterprises — Early Preachers — 
Baptist Church Organized — Names of First White Children Born in the 
Township — First Teacher, First Cooper and First Blacksmiths 514-515 

LOST CREEK TOWNSHIP— Early Land Entries and Settlers- 
Township Organized in 1818 — Pioneers and Their Varied Activities — 
Baptist Church Established — Scourge of Cholera in 1832 515 

ELIZABETH TOWNSHIP— First Settlement About 1802— First Land 
Entry — Names of Early Settlers — Township Gives Soldiers for War of 
1812— Early Grist Mills and Saw Mills— The First Distillery— Pioneer 
Religious Activities — First Schoolhouse and First Schoolmaster 516 

BETHEL TOWNSHIP— Robert Crawford Makes Land Entry in 1802 
— Other Early Entries and Pioneer Settlers — Early Mills and Other 
Business Enterprises — Early Churches and Schools 516-517 

MONROE TOWNSHIP— Land Entries in 1804— Other Early Settlers. .517 


WASHINGTON TOWNSHIP— Very Early Settlement Around Old 
Indian Town Known as Upper Piqua — Indians Were Numerous in This 
Locality— Settlers of 1798-99— Early Land Entries 517-518 

NEWBERRY TOWNSHIP— First Land Entry, in 1801— Other Early 
Entries — Pioneer Industries — Effect of War of 1812 — Early Schools 
and Teachers — Pioneer Religious Activities 518 

Agriculttire in Miami County 

Present Industrial Status — Gratifying Production by Miami Farmers 
During Period of World War — Comparison with Early Days — Diffi- 
culties Encountered by Pioneer Farmers — Early Farm Production — 
Wild Game— Fruit Raising 518-520 

the Organization of This Valuable Body — Constitution — First Officers — 
Where Early County Fairs Were Held — Permanent Grounds Estab- 
lished in 1856 — The Property Is Improved — Fairs Held Here for Fifteen 
Years — New Fair Grounds Established in 1871 — Modern Improvement 
of the Property — The Annual County Fairs and Their Influence — 
Present Officers of the Society — The Miami County Horticultural Soci- 
ety and Its Work — Tobacco Growing — Stock Breeding Industry in the 
County 520-523 

FARMERS' INSTITUTE— Four Institutes of the County Well At- 
tended — Their Great Benefit — Independent Institutes 523 

THE COUNTY EXPERIMENTAL FARM— Location and Area of the 
Farm — A Source of Valuable Information — Grain Testing and Other 
Service 523-524 

Miami Coimty's Military Record 

THE WAR OF 1812— County Plays Part in Disrupting Influence of 
the British with the Indians — Fourth United States Infantry and Ken- 
tucky Volunteers Reach Troy — The Battle of Tippecanoe and Its Effect 
— Volunteers Assemble at Piqua — Expedition for Relief of Fort Wayne 
— Blockhouses Established — Two Companies of Miami County Riflemen 
at Greenville — Colonel John Johnston Secures Friendship of the Indians 
— Review of War Activities Pertinent to Miami County — Names of 
Miami County Men in Active Service 524-526 

THE MEXICAN WAR— Fragment of a Company from Miami County 

— Merged with a Company Organized at Dayton 526 

THE CIVIL WAR— The County Makes Loyal Response— The Coving- 
ton Blues — County's Enrollment Under First Call — Military Aid Society 
Formed — Commands in Which Miami Men Were in Service— Career 
of Augustus H. Coleman — Review of Regiments That Brought Special 
Honor to Miami County 526-529 

THE SPANISH-AMERICAN WAR— Miami County Furnishes Two 
Regularly Organized Companies — Officers of These Companies — Rec- 
ord of Service 529-530 

THE WORLD WAR— Individual Identity of States Eliminated in 
Forming the National Armj' — Local Identity of Miami County Pre- 
served in Two Regularly Organized Companies — The County Supplies 
Approximately 1,100 Men — Resume of Service of Company C, of Piqua, 
and Company A, of Covington — The Thirty-seventh Division and Its 
Record Overseas — Splendid Service of Miami County Men — First Ser- 
geant Luther Langston — Major W. L. Marlin — Heroism of Clifford 
Thompson — Sergeant Paul Schnell — Citations for Bravery or Service — 
Miami County Well Represented on Land and Sea — A Record of Noble 
and Patriotic Service 530-534 


GOVERNMENT WAR LOANS— Wonderful Achievement of Miami 
County — Great Exhibition of Patriotism — Compact Organization Formed 
for Futherance of Loan Campaigns — Executive Force for First and 
Second Loans — The Results Attained — Campaign for Third Liberty- 
Loan — Executive Corps for the Fourth and Fifth Loans — Summary of 
Results — Subscriptions Secured in Record-Breaking Time 534-536 

WAR SAVINGS STAMPS— Organization in the County Promptly Per- 
fected — Outline of Gallant Campaign — Leaders in the Work 536-537 

THE WAR CHEST— Miami County War Chest Association Formed— 
County Divided Into Districts — Directors of Work in the Different Dis- 
tricts — The Campaign Committee — Result of the Drive — Appropriations 
from the War Chest — Executive Organization of Miami County War 
Chest 537-539 

— Efficacious Work of the Miami County Division — Organization and 
Officers — Executive Division — Subdivision of Work — Names of 
Prominent Workers — Model Kitchen Established at Piqua — Women's 
Auxiliary to Camp Sherman — Food Conservation — The Nursing Divi- 
sion — A Record of Exalted Service on the Part of the Women of the 
Country 539-541 

THE AMERICAN LEGION— Purpose of the Organization— Miami 
County Has Three Posts— Clifford Thompson Post, No. 43, of Troy; 
Paul S. Schnell Post, No. 184, of Piqua; A. B. Cole Post, No. 80, 
of Covington 541-542 

RED CROSS, TROY DIVISION— Red Cross Branches in the County 
Reorganized — The Miami County Chapter — The Piqua Division — The 
Troy Division — Work Initiated at Troy — Officers of the Troy Division 
— Campaign for Membership — The Admirable Enrollment — Officers 
Elected in 1918 — General Reviewr of Work of Troy Division— The 
Junior Red Cross and Its Service — Red Cross Service During Influenza 
Epidemic — Service for Returned Soldiers 542-543 


Troy Selected as County Seat After Protracted Struggle— Selection of 
Site of the Seat of Justice — First House at Troy — First Courthouse 
a Log Structure — Pioneer Business Enterprises of the Town — Pioneer 
Physicians — A School Established in 1813 — First Churches — The Miami 
Canal and Its Influence Upon Troy — Business Transactions Recorded in 
1847 — Laying of Cornerstone of Present Courthouse — Brief Description 
of the Courthouse 543-545 

TROY CITY GOVERNMENT—Chief Elective Officials— The City 
Council— Other Municipal Officers— The Board of Public Safety— The 
Civil Service Commission — Other Municipal Organizations — Present 
Population 545 

CITY HALL— -Building Erected in 1876— Brief Description of Building 
and Its Uses 546 

PUBLIC LIBRARY— Troy Public Library Opened in 1896— Present 
Quarters — Donation of New Books and Subscrpition for Purchase of 
Books — The Librarians — Number of Volumes in the Library 546 

LODGES— Troy Masonic Building Finest in the City — The Strong 
Masonic Organization at Troy—Other Fraternal and Benevolent Or- 
ganizations 546 


TROY INDUSTRIES— Troy Was Long a Center for the Manufactur- 
ing Horse-Drawn Vehicles — Decline of This Industry Induces Other 
Lines of Manufacturing — Troy Manufactories and Their War Produc- 
tion — The Troy Wagon Works — The Skinner Irrigation Company — The 
Troy Body Company — The Miami Specialty Works — The H. D. Cress 
Company — Troy Pattern Works — The Hobart Brothers Company — The 
Gummed Products Company — The Hobart Manufacturing Company — 
The Miami Trailer Company — The McKinnon Dash Company — The 
Star Foundry — Ohio Specialty Manufacturing Company — The Lorimer 
Manufacturing Company 546-551 

THE FLOOD AT TROY— Havoc and Devastation Attend Great Flood 
of 1913 — General Description of Advance of the Flood — Bells of the 
City Sound General Alarm — Rescue Work — Streets Surge with Mad 
Rush of Waters — A Gigantic Lake Formed — Gradual Subsidence of the 
Water — Herioc Rescue Work — A Night of Terror — "Troy Will Take 
Care of Its Own" — Relief Committee Organized — Work of the Com- 
mittee — Survey of Amount of Damage Done — The Known Dead on 
April 3, 1913 — Heavy Losses Sustained — Work of Rehabilitation 551-552 

NEWSPAPERS— Miami Reporter Appears in 1827— The Miami Weekly 
Post — Troy Times Founded in 1829 — Troy Sentinel First Democratic 
Paper in the Town — The Imperial and The Bulletin — The Troy Demo- 
crat — The Buckeye — The Troy Chronicle and Daily Trojan — The Troy 
Record— The Troy Daily Times— The Troy Daily News 552-553 

THE ALTRURIAN CLUB OF TROY— Leading Woman's Organiza- 
tion of the City — Its Organization, Officers and Work 533-554 

THE FORTNIGHTLY CLUB OF TROY— Organization and Mem- 
bership — Prominent in Belgium Relief Work — Present Officers 554 

THE SOROSIS CLUB— Organization and Motto of the Club— Useful 

to Its Members and the Community — Present Officers 554 

THE VARSITY CLUB— A Dominating Social Institution— Modern 
Headquarters — Officers 554 

TROY ROTARY CLUB— An Organization of Great Value in the Com- 
munity — Weekly Luncheons and Discussions — Monthly Meetings — 
— Present Executive Officers — Directors — Committees 554 

THE TROY CLUB— Outgrowth of Old Troy Bicycle Club— Con- 
solidates with Outing Club — Island Reeort of the Outing Qub — ^Pres- 
ent Fine Home of the Troy Qub — Officers and Directors 555 

TROY RAILROAD SERVICE— First Railroad in 1850— Steady 
Advance in Transportation Facilities — Baltimore & Ohio Railroad — 
Dayton & Troy Traction Line — Troy & Piqua Traction Line — Freight 
Service of Traction Lines 555 

TROY BANKS— Miami County Bank Established in 1871— Reorganized 
as the Troy National Bank — Present Financial Status— Present 
Officers— First National Bank Organized in 1863— Succeeds Miami 
County Branch of Ohio State Bank< — First Officers — New Building 
Occupied in 1908 — Present Capitalization — The Savings Department — 
Present Officers 55S-5S6 

Organized in 1890— Original Officers— Changes in Executive Corps- 
Present Officers — Present Directors — Resources and Assets 556 


TROY CHURCHES— Transition from the Log Cabin to the Present 
Day Splendid Places of Worship— First Church Erected by the 
Methodists— Present Edifice Dedicated in 1901— St. Patrick's Catholic 
Church— The First Presbyterian Church— The First Baptist Church— 
The First Christian Church 556-558 

TROY SCHOOLS— First School Established in 1813— The Academy 
—Present Superintendent— St. Patrick's Parochial School 558-559 


Origin of the Name— Job Card the First White Settler— Card Builds 
Cabin at Upper Piqua in 1806— Erects a Cabin on Site of Present City 
of Piqua— First Hamlet of Piqua Consisted of Seven Log Cabins- 
Occupants of These Cabins— Birth of First White Child— First Survey 
Made— Patent Deed Granted to John Manning— Matthew Caldwell 
Secures Land— First Wedding— Settlement First Named Washington- 
Present Name Adopted in 1816 — General Harrison's Quarters at Upper 
Piqua in War of 1812— Early Stockade Houses— Colonel John Johnston 
Indian Agent Here— Activities of Pioneers After Close of the War- 
Townships Organized in 181-1 — Piqua Located in Washington Town- 
ship— Huntersville Becomes Part of Piqua in 1892— First Mayor of 
of Piqua— Area of the City— Boundaries— Village of Rossville— Colony 
of Slaves Freed by John Randolph, of Virginia, Settle in Rossville— 
Piqua Most Important City in Miami County— An Attractive and 
Modern City— Old Homesteads That Are Landmarks— Retail Business 
District Branching Out— Surrounded by Fertile Farm Lands 559-561 

Made Possible by the Women's Clubs— Genesis of the Movement That 
Resulted in Purchase of the Park by the City— Women's Clubs Raise 
Funds to Improve the Park— Attractions and Privileges of the Park- 
Meeting Place of the Piqua Community Chautauqua 561-562 

FEDERAL BUILDING— A Modern Structure of Fine Architectural 
Design— Building Completed in 1915— Present Postmaster— First Post- 
office Established in 1811— Name of Village Originally Piquatown 562 

James L. Black the First President— The Building Occupied by the 
Organization— Various Departments and Officials— Admirable Work of 
the Institution— Center of War Work Activities— The Piqua Fuel- 
Administration 562-56'^ 

PUBLIC UTILITIES— Pioneer Transportation Facilities— The Chi- 
cago, Piqua & Indiana Railroad— Now a Part of the Pennsylvania Sys- 
tem — Extensive Improvements Completed in 1914 — Handsome New 
Station— The Dayton & Michigan Railroad— Now a Part of the Bal- 
timore & Ohio System— Traction Lines of Piqua 564 

WATER SUPPLY— Piqua Hydraulic Company Organized in 1866— 
Officers and Directors at Time of Incorporation— Hydraulic Canal 
Completed in 1870— Present System Completed in 1876— Brief Descrip- 
tion of Service 564-565 

•of the Company— Service of the System— The Piqua Home Telephone 
Company Consolidated with the Central Union Telephone Company 
Jn 1917 565 

ARTIFICIAL GAS— First Gas Company Organized in 1854 — Company 
Supplies Street Lighting Until 1889 565 

NATURAL GAS— Mercer Gas & Fuel Company Secures Franchise at 
Piqua in 1887— Pipe Line Constructed— The Dayton Natural Gas Com- 
pany—Miami Valley Gas & Fuel Company— The Ohio Fuel Supply 
Company $65 


Plant of This Company — ^System of City Heating Installed — Ohio 
Electric Light Association Organized at Piqua — The Piqua Edison 
Illuminating Company — Succeeded by the Piqua Electric Light Com- 
pany — The Miami Light, Heat & Power Company — The Dayton Power 
& Light Company 565-566 

THE PIQUA NATIONAL BANK— Genesis and Rise of the Institution 
— Potent Influence of Joseph G. Young — Brief Review of History of the 
Institution 566-567 

CITIZENS' NATIONAL BANK— Resume of the Inception and Up- 
building of This Representative Bank 567 

and Development of the Institution 567 

— List of Incorporators — Capital Stock — Handsome New Building 
Erected by the Company — Present Officers 567-568 

Building and Loan Association in Miami County — Incorporated in 1871 — 
Splendid Record of This Corporation 568 

THE PIQUA CLUB— A Representative Organization- New Club 
House Erected in 1908— First Officers— Present Officers 568 

THE PIQUA GOLF CLUB— Attractive Grounds of the Club— The 
Fine Golf Course — Plans for Modern Club House — Membership — Pres- 
ent Officers 568-569 

WOMEN'S CLUBS OF PIQUA— All Are Literary Organizations with 
High Cultural Ideals — Admirable Work of the Clubs in Connection with 
War Activities — The Fortnightly Club — Daughters of the American 
Revolution — The Columbian Club — The History Club — Helen Hunt Cir- 
cle — The Book Club — The Non-de-Script — Reading Circle — The Story 
Tellers' League — City Federation of Women's Clubs — The Research 
Club — Piqua Branch Child Conservative League of America — The Round 
Table — Community Club of Springcreek Township 569-572 

Through Generosity of Jacob G. Schmidlapp — Brief Review of the His- 
tory and Service of the Institution 572-573 

LODGES AND SOCIETIES— Brief Record of the Various Lodges and 
Societies of Piqua 573 

able Record of This Vigorous Organization at Piqua — Review of Special 
Activities of the Association and Its Leaders — General Organization 
and Service — The Association Becomes Federated in November, 
1919 573-574 

hood the Association is Best Paying Enterprise in the City of Piqua — 
Organized in 1870 — The Association Building and Its Equipment — Gen- 
eral Outline of Splendid Service 574-576 

KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS— Piqua Council Instituted in 1906— Offi- 
cers of the Charter Class— Record of Steady Growth— The Club House 
— Plans for Auditorium — Present Officers 576 


Institution — Institution Established Through Generosity of Mrs. Edward 
C. Thayer — A Memorial to Delos C. Ball — The Building and Its Modern 
Equipment — Memorial Rooms of the Hospital — General Record of Serv- 
ice — Officers and Functions 576-578 

THE FLOOD OF 1913— The Most Terrible Calamity in History of 
Piqua — Death and Devastation — Marvelous Heroism — Concise Review 
of the Havoc Wrought by the Flood at Piqua and in the Surrounding 
Districts — Tragic Incidents — Thrilling Rescues — Days and Nights of 
Terror — Fear of Breaking of the Lewistown Reservoir — Relief Activities 
After the Flood — Noble Record of Unselfish Devotion and Service — 
Flood Leaves a Scene of Desolation — Piqua' Retrieves Herself 578-582 

ganized in June, 1917 — Four Branches Added — Officers Chosen — Head- 
quarters Donated — General Review of Admirable Service and Work 
During the Period of the World War — Work of Various Divisions and 
Committees 583-586 

CHURCHES— Piqua a "City of Churches"— City Has Eighteen Churches 
— United Presbyterians Erect First Church Edifice, a Log Cabin in 
1816 — Growth of This Church Organization — Methodist Episcopal Serv- 
ices Held as Early as 1807 — Progress of Methodism at Piqua — The 
Greene Street Methodist Church — Favorite Hill Mission — A Second 
Methodist Church Established in 1853— Present Edifice Erected in 1914 
— The Presbyterian Church — St. James Church, Protestaiit Episcopal — 
The Baptist Church — St. Paul's Evangelical Church — St. Mary's Catho- 
lic Church — The First Christian Church — The United Brethren — The 
Church of Christ — St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church — The Wayne 
Street Methodist Episcopal Church — The First Reformed Church — 
Cyrene Methodist Episcopal Church — Park Avenue Baptist Church .. 586-588 

THE PIQUA PUBLIC SCHOOLS— Schools Maintained at Highest 
Standard — Record of Early Educational Activities — General Review of 
History of Splendid Growth and Advancement — The Schools of the City 
at the Present Time — The Piqua High School — St. Mary's Parochial 
School— St. Boniface Parochial School 588-591 

PIQUA NEWSPAPERS— Piqua Gazette Issued in 1820— Western 
Courier and Piqua Enquirer the Second Paper at Piqua — The Piqua 
Intelligencer — The Piqua Register — The Piqua Journal and the Lead- 
er-Journal — The Piqua Daily Dispatch — The Miami Democrat — The 
Miami Leader — The Piqua Daily Leader — The Weekly Journal and the 
Piqua Leader-Dispatch— The Miami Helmet— The Piqua Daily Call— 
The Call Publishing Company — The Piqua Publishing Company — The 
Piqua Daily Press — Consolidation of the Piqua Call, the Piqua Leader- 
Dispatch and the Piqua Press — The Miami Post — The Miami Valley 
News 591-592 

INDUSTRIES OF PIQUA— Pioneer Grist Mills— Piqua Becomes a 
Center for Manufacturing of Linseed Oil— The First Paper Mill — Car- 
riage and Buggy Factories — The Piqua School Furniture Company — 
Piqua Rolling Mill and Cincinnati Corrugating Company — Wood Shovel 
& Tool Company — The Piqua Hosiery Company — The Atlas Underwear 
Company — The Superior Underwear Company — The Imperial Under- 
wear Company — The Favorite Stove & Range Company — The Piqua 
Handle & Manufacturing Company — The Orr Felt & Blanket Company 
— The Pioneer Pole & Shaft Company — The Piqua Malt Company — The 
S. Zollinger Company — The French Oil Mill Machinery Company — 
George W. Hartzell's Walnut Wood Companies — The Meteor Motor 
Car Company — The Ohio Marble Company — The Cron-Kills Company 
— The Val Decker Packing Company — C. L. Wood Planing Mill — R. 
Kugelman & Company — The Cron Company — The Piqua Milling Com- 
pany — The Magee Bros. Company — The Piqua Paper Box Company — 


The Piqua Ice Company — Wright & Kuntz Lumber Company — Piqua 
Cap Company — The Champion Cutter Manufacturing- Company — The 
Rundle Medicine Company — The Piqua Amusement Company 592-612 

Villages of the County 

BRADFORD— Review of History of Bradford Junction 612-615 


CASSTOWN 615-616 


COVINGTON— History— The Dunkards— Church of the Brethren- 
Presbyterian Church — The Christian Church — The Lutheran Church — 
Schools — The Stillwater Valley Bank — Railroads — Industries — News- 
papers — The Covington Armory — Lodges 616-623 

FLETCHER 623-624 


LAURA 624 

LENA 625 


PLEASANT HILL — Beery Correspondence School for Horsemanship 
— Bank — The Pleasant Hill News — G. A. R. — Staunton Township and 
Dutch Station 625-628 

TIPPECANOE CITY— Attractive Village in Monroe Township— Early 
Settlers and Their Activities — Population — Railroads, Traction Lines and 
Public Utilities — The Churches of the Village — Fraternal Organizations 
— Public Schools — Financial Institutions — Newspapers — Miami & Erie 
Canal and Early Transportation Facilities — Pioneer Mills and Other In- 
dustries — Present Industrial Enterprises 628-633 

WEST CHARLESTON— First Hamlet Settled in Bethel Township- 
One of the Oldest Settlements in the County — Originally Named Friend- 
town — Pioneer Status — Condition at the Present Time 633 

WEST MILTON— Joseph Evans First Settler— The Town Platted by 
Evans in 1807 — Origin of Present Name — Early Industries — Manufac- 
turing of Lightning Rods — Outgrowth of Quaker Settlement — Railroad 
Facilities — Overlook Park— Municipal Improvements — First Quaker 
Church with Steeple and Bell Erected at West Milton-— Early Activities 
of the Society of Friends in the Settlement — Banking Interests — The 
Citizens' National Bank — The West Milton Loan & Savings Association 
— The West Milton Home Telephone Company — Stillwater Valley Elec- 
tric Company — The West Milton Record — Lodges 633-634 


Map of the Miami River Drainage Area Frontispiece 

Logan County Courthouse Facing page 169 

Views of Bellefontaine " " 198 

Common Pleas Judges, Logan County " " 217 

Views of Belle Center, Rushsylvania and Quincy. . " " 272 

Views of Zanesfield, Lakeview and Lewistown... " " 280 

Judge Joseph D. Barnes " " 332 

Views of Sidney " " 336 

Judge Walter D. Jones " " 495 

Views of Troy " *' 543 

Views of Piqua " " 559 


Hon. John C. Hover sketch in the Bench and Bar of Logan 

Hon. Joseph D. Barnes sketch in the Bench and Bar of Shelby- 

Hon. Walter Duval Jones, senior Common Pleas judge of Ohio, 
was born June 21, 1857, at Piqua, Ohio, a son of Mathias H. and 
Jane (Wood) Jones. He attended the graded and high schools of 
Piqua and in youth mastered the printer's trade and for a time did 
newspaper and editorial work, in the meantime pursuing his studies 
for the law. Admitted to the bar in 1878, he was engaged in private 
practice during that and the following year and then served as city 
solicitor of Piqua for six terms. February 6, 1899, he was appointed 
Common Pleas judge to fill a vacancy, and in the same year was 
elected to that office, to which he has been elected six times without 
opposition. Judge Jones is a Knight Templar Mason and a member 
of the Piqua club, the Piqua Chamber of Commerce and the Episco- 
pal church. He was married October 23, 1879, to Miss Laura C. 
Harlow, and has one daughter, Mrs. Dr. F. W. Thomas, and two 
grandchildren, Randolph and Charlotte. The home of Judge Jones 
is located at 412 North Wayne street, Piqua. 


IN no part of the Union are there more objects of archaeological 
interest than in the Miami valley, in Ohio, and never before were 
we so well prepared to study them so successfully as at the present 
time. It is not our purpose, however, in these volumes to go in 
detail into this subject, but rather to give a brief outline of the 
evidences extant that this region was once the abode of that mysteri- 
ous people whom, for want of a better name, we call "Mound Build- 
ers." In the Proceedings of the American Antiquarian Society, 
published in October, 1883, Prof. F. W. Putnam, of Cambridge, 
Mass., who has taken great interest in the archaeology of Ohio, has 
this to say of the fortified hill in Butler county : 

"Fort Hill, of which an accurate description and figure are 
given by Squier and Davis, is in several respects one of the most 
remarkable of the prehistoric works in the State of Ohio, and has 
not yet suffered much by the hand of man, thanks to its being diffi- 
cult of access. Nature has held almost undisputed sway over the 
works since they were deserted, and forest trees of great age are 
growing upon the walls and within the enclosure. The walls of this 
fort are formed of stones taken from the top of the hill and from 
the ditch made on the inside of the walls. These walls are from 
eight to fifteen feet high and from twenty to thirty or more feet 
in width, and they enclose an area of nearly fifty acres. They are 
carried around the very brow of the hill, forming a continuation of 
its steep sides. Some conception of the antiquity of the place may 
be derived from the size of a decayed oak stump still standing upon 
the summit of the wall, which measures seven by nine feet in its 
two diameters, nearly three feet from the ground. This is probably 
the same stump which thirty-seven years ago Squier and Davis 
reported as having a circumference of twenty-three feet." 

With the exception of Ross county, Butler contains more an- 
tiquities than any other in the State. Prof. S. F. Baird pronounces 
it one of the most interesting spots on this continent. When it is 
considered that within its borders are less than three hundred thou- 
sand acres of land, the claims put forth appear to be exaggerated. 
And yet there are over 250 artificial mounds and seventeen en- 
closures. All of the latter have been surveyed and described save 
one. Add to these over three hundred thousand various kinds of stone 
implements which have been picked up, and no mean appearance is 
presented. Of these remains, the most celebrated is the one already 
mentioned and known as Fortified Hill, located in Ross township, 
on Section 12, and less than two and one-half miles from the Miami. 
The plan of the work with accompanying description was first 
printed in Squier and Davis' Ancient Monuments of the Missis- 
sippi Valley, published by the Smithsonian Institution in the year 



1848. Passing over such works as contain only a description, the 
following books may be named which contain a delineation of Forti- 
fied Hill. Appletons' Cyclopoedia, 1873 ; Baldwin's Ancient America, 
1872; Bancroft's Native Races of the Pacific Slope, vol. IV., 1875; 
MacLean's Mound Builders, 1879; Larkin's Ancient Man in America, 
1880; Smithsonian Report, 1883; History of Butler County, 1883; 
and Allen's Pre-historic World, 1885. It is thus seen that great 
prominence has been given to this work. 

The following bibliography of earthworks in the Miami val- 
ley is taken from an article prepared by Mrs. Cyrus Thomas, under 
the auspices of the Smithsonian Institution, and published in Vol- 
ume I of the Ohio Archaeological and Historical Society publica- 
tions : 

Butler County 

Ancient earthworks six miles southeast from the town of Ham- 
ilton. Surveyed and described in 1842 by Jas. McBride, J. B. Mac- 
Lean in Sm. Rep., 1881, pp. 600, 603. Diagram on page 602. These 
works are located partly in Fairfield township. Sec. 15, 8, and 16, 
and partly in Union township. Sees. 8 and 14. 

Fortified Hill, on the west side of the Big Miami, three miles 
below Hamilton. Described and figured, Anc. Mon., pp. 16, 18, PI. 
vi. ; also by MacLean in Mound Builders, pp. 184-187, fig. 53, and 
brief notice and figure by same in Sm. Rep., 1883, p. 850. Explored, 
described, and figured by John P. Rogan, Thomas MS. 

The A. McCormick mound, Fairfield township, on farm of Mrs. 
A. McCormick. Described and figured by John P. Rogan, Thomas 

The Wm. M. Cochran mound, one mile northeast of Bunker 
Hill, Reily township. Explored, described, and figured by John P. 
Rogan, Thomas MS. 

The John Hoffman group of mounds near the central portion of 
the county. Explored, described, and figured by John P. Rogan, 
Thomas MS. Probably the same one mentioned by John P. Mac- 
Lean, situated in St. Clair township. Mound Builders, p. 214. 

The George Warwick mound, two miles north of Hamilton, in 
St. Clair township. Explored, described, and figured by John P. 
Rogan, Thomas MS. Noticed by J. P. MacLean, Mound Builders, 
p. 216. 

Large circular enclosure on the west side of the Big Miami, 
about seven miles below Hamilton, Ross township. Described and 
figured, Anc. Mon. pp. 85, 86, PI. xxx, No. 2; also by MacLean, 
Mound Builders, pp. 190, 191, fig. 55. 

Group of six mounds in Ross township, mentioned and figured, 
Anc. Mon., p. 170, fig. 57, No. 1. More fully described and figured, 
MacLean, Mound Builders, pp. 194, 195, fig. 56. 

Mound on land of J. and G. Meescopf in the southern portion of 
the county ; one mile east of the R. Cooper mounds. Explored, de- 
scribed, and figured by John P. Rogan, Thomas MS. 

Mound on farm of Robert Cooper, Fairfield township. Ex- 
plored, described, and figured by John P. Rogan, Thomas MS. 
Noticed by J. P. MacLean, Mound Builders, p. 181. 


The Samuel Lamdon mound, Reily township. Explored, de- 
scribed, and figured by John P. Rogan, Thomas MS. Brief descrip- 
tion by John P. MacLean, Mound Builders, p. 202. 

The Henry Schwarm mound, a mile and a half northwest of 
the village of Reily. Explored, described, and figured by John P. 
Rogan, Thomas MS, Probably the one in Reily township, men- 
tioned by J. P. MacLean, Mound Builders, p. 202. 

Enclosure, ditch, and mound on Seven Mile creek, near Somer- 
ville, Milford township. Described and figured by MacLean, Mound 
Builders, pp. 207, 209, fig. 59, Brief notice and figure, Anc. Mon., 
p. 90, PI. xxxi. No. 2. 

Mound from which was taken a frog pipe and charred cloth. 
Reported by Thomas Dover. 

Mound one mile south of Post Town station and two miles north 
of Middletown in which were found rolls of cloth and other relics. 
Reported by John S. Earhart, O. T. Mason, Sm. Rep., 1880, pp. 
443, 444. 

Ancient work (enclosure) on Four Mile Creek, in Oxford town- 
ship. Described and figured, Anc. Mon. pp. 29, 31, PI. xi. No. 2 and 
also by MacLean Mound Builders, pp. 204, 205, fig. 58. 

Ancient work (enclosure) on the bank of Seven Mile creek in 
St. Clair township, about five miles north of Hamilton. Described 
and figured, Anc. Mon., p, 29, PI. xi. No. 1 ; also by MacLean in 
Mound Builders, pp. 212, 213, fig. 60. The mound explored by 
John P. Rogan, Thomas MS, 

Ancient fortification in Fairfield township. Described and fig- 
ured by MacLean, Mound Builders, pp. 177, 178, fig. 49. Brief de- 
scription and figure, Anc. Mon., p. 22. PI. viii, No. 2. 

Ancient inclosure near the preceding. Brief notice and fig- 
ure, MacLean, Mound Builders, p. 178, fig. 50. 

Enclosure with oblong mound inside on the bank of Nine Mile 
creek, in Wayne township. Described and figured by MacLean, 
Mound Builders, pp. 217-220, fig. 6L Briefly noticed and figured in 
Anc. Mon., p. 90, PI. xxxi, No, 3. 

Square enclosure and mounds on east side of the Big Miami, 
about four miles below Hamilton, in the southwest part of Fair- 
field township. Described and figured, Anc. Mon., p. 85, PI. xxx, 
No. 1. 

Circular earthwork on east side of the Big Miami, southwest 
corner Fairfield township. Described and figured by MacLean, 
Mound Builders, p. 178, fig. 50. Brief notice and figure in Anc. Mon., 
pp. 90, 91, PI. xxxi, No. 4. 

Enclosure with double walls ; mounds and ditch on the west 
bank of the Big Miami, four miles southwest of Hamilton, in Ross 
township. Described and figured Anc. Mon. pp. 30, 31, PI. xi, No, 3 ; 
also by MacLean, Mound Builders, pp. 188, 190, fig. 54. The mound 
explored, described at length and figured by J. P. MacLean, Sm. 
Rep., 1883, pp. 848, 849. 

Mounds in Liberty township (only ancient works in this town- 
ship) are mentioned by MacLean as follows: In Sec. 20, on the 
farm of S. Rose, one, and on the farm of D, B, Williamson, one; 


in Sec. 26, on the farms of Stephen Clawson and C. Handle, three; 
one in Sec. 15 and another on Sec. 34 (Mound Builders, p. 176). 

Group of small works (square and oval enclosure and mound) 
in Union township. Described and figured in Anc. Mon., pp. 91, 
92, PI. xxxii. No. 1. More complete description by MacLean, Mound 
Builders, pp. 171, 172, fig. 46. 

On the adjoining section (8), same township, is a small circu- 
lar enclosure described and figured by MacLean, Mound Builders, 
pp. 172, 174, figs. 47, 48. 

Ancient Fortification on the east bank of the Big Miami about 
six miles above Hamilton, in northeast corner Fairfield township. 
Described and figured^ Anc. Mon., pp. 21, 22, PL viii. No. 1 ; also 
by MacLean, Mound Builders, po. 181, 183, fig. 52. 

Maps and diagrams of Butler county showing location of signal 
mounds with explanatory notes, J. P. MacLean, Sm. Rep., 1882, 
pp. 752, 758. A thorough description of the various ancient works 
of this county, a separate description being given of each work with 
fig. of most of them. J. P. MacLean, Mound Builders, pp. 153, 228, 
figs. 46, 64 and map of the county showing location of the several 
works. Those described by others are mentioned separately in this 
catalogue under "Butler County, Ohio." 

General description of the mounds of the county with special 
notices of the group on Sec. 21 in Ross township (same group fig- 
ured in Anc. Mon., p. 170), figured, one opened. Brief description 
of the group on the Miami described in Anc. Mon., p. 30, PI. xi, fig. 
3 ; one opened and figured. J. P. MacLean, Sm. Rep., 1883, pp. 844, 

Hamilton County 

The Langdon Mound, near Red Bank ; brief notice of the mound 
and contents, and of another near by. 

Mound on the farm of Mr. Gould, two miles from Reading. 
Brief description of the mound and contents, 16th Rep. Peab. Mus., 
pp. 175, 176. 

Large enclosure, with outside ditch, on the right bank of the 
great Miami, near the village of Colerain. Described and figured 
Anc. Mon., pp. 35, 36, PI. xiii, No. 2. (See also C. PI. iii.) Possibly 
one of the works alluded to by Hugh Williamson, Obs. on Climate 
of America, Appendix D, pp. 189, 190. 

Ancient cemetery near Madisonville. Mentioned in Anc. Nat., 
Jan. 1881, Vol. XV, pp. 72-73. A lengthy and illustrated descrip- 
tion by T. W. Langdon in the Jour. Cin. Soc. Nat. Hist., V. HI, pp. 
40-68, p. 139, pp. 203-220, and pp. 237-257. Partial notices also in 
15th Rep. Peab. Mus., pp. 63-67 and 77, and 16th Rep., pp. 165-167; 
pp. 196 and 199. Brief notice from C. L. Metz, Sm. Rep., 1880, p. 

A square enclosure and parallel lines, opposite side of Little 
Miami river from the Milford Works; nearly opposite Milford, 
Clermont county. Brief description Anc. Mon., p. 95, PI. xxxiv, A, 
No. 2. Also figured in Hugh Williamson's work on Climate, p. 
197, fig. 2. 

Ancient works in Anderson township. Notices and partial de- 


scriptions, 16th Rep. Peab. Mus., pp. 167-174 and p. 202; also 17th 
Rep., pp. 339-346, 374 and 376. Noticed by C. L. Metz, Sm. Rep., 
1879, p. 439. 

Two circular enclosures in Sycamore township. Reported by 
J. P. MacLean, Sm. Rep., 1881, p. 683. 

Fortified Hill, at the mouth of the Great Miami. Described and 
figured, Pres. Harrison in Trans. Hist. Soc. Ohio, Vol. I, pp. 217- 
225. Brief notice and figure (copy from op. cit.) Anc. Mon., pp. 
25-26, PI. ix, No. 2. 

Four mounds on the present site of Cincinnati ; opened ; the 
articles obtained described by Dr. Drake in "Pictures of Cincinnati," 
p. 204, etc. Mentioned by Caleb Atwater, Trans. Am. Antiq. Soc, 
Vol. I, (1820) pp. 156-160. 

Mound and grave at Cincinnati. Opened by Col. Winthrop 
Sargent, and the articles taken from them described by him in a 
letter to Dr. Benj. L. Barton, in 1794. Illustrated, Trans. Am. 
Phil. Soc, Vol. IV, (1799), pp. 177-180, and Vol. V (1802), p. 74. 

The following ancient works have been found "in the precincts 
of the town of Cincinnati:" 

Three circular embankments, two parallel convex banks, an 
excavation, and four mounds of unequal dimensions. Described with 
measurements in Western Gazetteer or Emigrant's Directory, pp. 

Mound at Sixth and Mound streets, Cincinnati. Reported by 
H. H. Hill, Sm. Rep., 1879, p. 438. 

Aboriginal vault or oven at the junction of the two branches 
of Duck creek, near the Red Bank station, in the vicinity erf Madi- 

Old roadway on Sec. 11, Columbia township. Reported by C. 
L. Metz, Sm. Rep. 1879, p. 439. 

Miami County 

Mound on Corn Island, near Troy. Opened. Described and 
contents noted by George F. Adye in a letter in Cincinnati Gazette, 
and quoted in Hist. Mag., Nov. 1869, Vol. VI, 2d Ser., from the 
Christian Intelligencer. 

Earthworks and mounds in Concord and Newton townships. 
Brief descriptions by E. T. Wiltheiss, Papers Relating to Anthro- 
pology, from Sm. Rep. 1884, p. 38. 

Embankment of earth and stone on the left bank of the Great 
Miami, two miles and a half above the town of Piqua. Described 
and figured, Anc. Mon., p. 23, PI. viii, No. 3. Noticed also by 
Drake, View of Cin. Described and figured by John P. Rogan, 
Thomas MS. Notice by John P. MacLean, Mound Builders, p. 27. 

Below the preceding a group of works (circles, ellipses, etc), 
formerly existed on the site of the present town of Piqua. Described 
in Long's "Second Expedition," Vol. I, pp. 54-66. Mentioned in 
Anc. Mon., p. 23. 

Mounds and earthworks in Washington and Spring Creek 
townships, on the Great Miami and its tributaries. Full description 
and diagram by E. T. Wiltheiss, Papers Relating to Anthropology 
from Sm. Rep. 1884, pp. 35-38. 


Tablets of burnt clay found on farm of W. Morrow near Piqua. 
Reported by E. T. Wiltheiss, Sm. Rep. 1879, p. 440. 

Graded way at Piqua. Described in Long's Sec. Expd., Vol. 
I., p. 60. Noticed in Anc. Mon., p. 88. 

Montgomery County 

Nest of flint implements, found two miles west of Centreville. 
Described by S. H. Binkley, Am. Antiq., Vol. III., (1881), p. 144. 

Earthworks on the east bank of the Great Miami river, three 
miles below Dayton. Described and figured, Anc. Mon., pp. 23-24, 
PI. viii, No. 4. 

Small stone mound near Alexandersville. Opened, described, 
and contents noted at length by S. H. Binkley, Am. Antiq. Vol. Ill, 
(1881), pp. 325-328. Young Mineralogist and Antiquarian, April, 
1885, pp. 79-80. 

Enclosure, partly of stone, on the bluff, two miles south of Day- 
ton. Described by S. H. Binkley, Am. Antiq. Vol. VII (1885), 
p. 295. (Possibly the same as mentioned in Anc. Mon., pp. 23-24.) 

Group of ancient works consisting of square, circles, and 
mounds, near Alexandersville and six miles below Dayton. De- 
scribed and figured, Anc. Mon., pp. 82-83, PI. xxix. No. 1. S. H. 
Binkley, Am. Antiq., Vol. Ill (1881), pp. 192-193 and 325-328. 
Young Mineralogist and Antiquarian, April, 1885, pp. 79-80. 

The great mound at Miamisburg. Western Gazetteer (1847), 
p. 295. Howe's Hist. Coll. Ohio (1847), p. 375. Anc. Mon. (1848), 
p. 5, fig. 1. Ohio Centen. Rep. (1877), PI. ii. MacLean's "Mound 
Builders," (1879), pp. 59-60, fig. 1. 

Ancient manufacturing village on the farm of M. T. Dodds, near 
West Carrollton. Described by S. H. Binkley, Am. Antiq., Vol. 
I (1879), pp. 256-258. 

Aboriginal cemetery on the bank of the Miami river, close to 
Dayton. Full description of the explorations by Aug. A. Foerste, 
Sm. Rep., 1883, pp. 838-844. Also noticed by S. H. Binkley, Am. 
Antiq., Vol. VII (1885), pp. 295-296. 

Shelby County 

A mound in the northern part of Van Buren township. Ex- 
plored ; contained balls and burnt human bones. Described by C. 
Williamson, "Science," Vol. IX (1887), p. 135. 

Warren County 

Fort Ancient, on a bluff in Washington township, overlooking 
the Little Miami, six miles east of Lebanon. Described and plan 
given in the "Portfolio" (Phila., 1809). Described and figured by 
Caleb Atwater, Trans. Amer. Antiq. Soc, Vol. 1 (1820), pp. 156- 
159, PI. ix. Howe's Hist. Coll. Ohio, pp. 503-505. Drake's "Pic- 
tures of Cin." (1815), p. 2. Western Gazetteer, p. 292. Anc. Mon. 
(1847), pp. 18-21, PI. vii. Drake's Inds. N. A. (15th Ed.), p. 58. 
Amer. Antiq., Vol. I (1878), pp. 49-51, and Vol. V (1883), pp. 238- 
239. Statement of present condition. Sixteenth Rep. Peab. Mus. 


(1884), Vol. Ill, pp. 168-169; also by Prof. Cyrus Thomas, with 
figures, in "Science," Vol VIII (1886). 

A mound on N. W. Quar. Sec, 23, Franklin township. Opened 
and briefly described. 

Two mounds on the S. W. Quar. Sec. 22, Franklin township, 
between the turnpike and the township line. Opened. Briefly 
noticed by J. P. MacLean, Sm. Rep., 1883, p. 851. 

Ancient forks (fortifications and mounds) near Foster's Cross- 
ing, on the hills west of the Little Miami. Brief notice by Josiah 
Morrow, Sm. Rep., 1879, p. 439. Reported also by J. D. Blackburn. 

The Miamisburg mound is the second most important one of 
its character perhaps in the United States. It is of perfect conical 
shape, some seventy feet high with the circular base of 300 feet in 
diameter. It is located just outside the city on one of the highways. 
In 1869 a number of citizens sunk a shaft from the top to two feet 
below its base. So far as startling revelations are concerned, the 
exploration was not a success. About eight feet below the sum- 
mit a human skeleton was discovered in a sitting posture. A cover 
of clay several feet in thickness and a deposit of ashes and char- 
coal seemed to be the burial. At a depth of twenty-four feet was 
found a number of flat stones, set at an angle of forty-five degrees, 
and overlapping like shingles on a roof, and this may have been 
the top at one time. Several theories have been advanced regard- 
ing the object of the builders of this mound. It is thought to have 
been a place for sacrifice, or a burial mound. The failure to dis- 
cover a large number of human bones within it seems to disprove 
these theories. It was in all probability used as a place of signaling, 
as it is one of a chain of similar earthen structures through this part 
of Ohio. Fires on its summit, which rises above the top of the 
surrounding forests, could be seen at a great distance. The trees 
which now cover it have grown since the settlement of the country 
by the whites. 

Of the historic fortifications of the Miami valley that known 
as Fort Ancient is the most imposing. It is located in Warren 
county, on the Little Miami river, about ten miles east of Lebanon. 
It is on a promontory 270 feet above the river bottoms, and com- 
mands a magnificent prospect of the fertile valley below. Two 
ravines head near each other on the tableland to the east of the river. 
Along the margin of the summit of the jagged outline eroded by 
these streams earth has been piled all around to strengthen the 
natural fortification. So irregular is the line, that though enclosing 
but 150 acres, it measures nearly four miles in length (18,712 feet, 
not counting any detached works). A moderate estimate of the 
amount of material removed to constitute this earth wall is 9,000,- 
000 cubic feet. Its construction would require the continuous labor 
of several hundred men, with primitive tools, as much as ten years. 
In the words of Prof. Orton, "We cannot be mistaken in seeing in 
the work of Fort Ancient striking evidence of an organized society, 
of intelligent leadership, in a word, of a strong government. A vast 
deal of labor was done and it was done methodically, systematically 
and with continuity. Here again we must think of the conditions 
under which the work was accomplished. * * * Not only were 


the Mound Builders without the aid of domestic aniipals of any 
sort, but they were without the service of metals. They had no 
tools of iron ; all the picks, hoes and spades that they used were 
made from chipped flints, and mussel shells from the river must 
have done the duty of shovels and scrapers. In short, not only was 
the labor severe and vast, but was all done in the hardest way. 
♦ * * Can wfe be wrong in further concluding that this work 
was done under a strong and efficient government? Men have 
always shown that they do not love hard work, and yet hard work 
was done persistently here. Are there not evidences on the face 
of the facts that they were held to their tasks by some strong con- 

If it is desired to go further into the unknown and largely con- 
jectured past, it may be stated that the Miami valley is located well 
within the glaciated region of Ohio. And it is of great interest to 
know that when man, in a state of development similar to that of 
the Eskimo, was hunting the mastodon, and the reindeer, and the 
walrus in the valley of the Delaware, the ice-front extended in 
Ohio as far south as Cincinnati. At that time the moose, the caribou, 
the musk-ox, and reindeer ranged through the forests and over 
the hills of Kentucky. And, if the theory of a glacial dam at Cin- 
cinnati can be entertained, there was for a period a long, irregular 
lake occupying the valley of the Ohio and its tributaries, rising 
to the top of the bluffs in all the lower portions of the valley above 
Cincinnati, and being as much as three hundred feet deep at Pitts- 
burgh. The explorer at that time, coming up from the south, would 
have encountered an ice wall along the line which marked the 
glacial margin ; and upon ascending it would have had before him 
naught but such icy wastes as Commodore Peary and Dr. Cook 
found while engaged in their polar expeditions. The forests and 
flowers south of this margin were then also very different from 
those now covering the area. From the discoveries of Prof. Orton 
and others, it may be inferred that red cedar abounded all over the 
southern part of Ohio. There is record of preglacial red cedar wood 
in Butler county, specimens of which can be seen in the cabinet of 
the State university. Excavations made in these glacial terraces 
have disclosed evidences of a preglacial race of men, which opens a 
new realm of conjecture. The chief value of this fact, in this con- 
nection, is to show that the work of the Mound Builders is very 
recent, as compared with the glacial period. The mounds and earth- 
works of the lost race which inhabited the Miami valley before its 
discovery by Europeans, are all upon the surface, being built like 
our present cities, upon the summits of the glacial terraces, or upon 
the present flood plains. Without doubt, where the antiquity of 
the Mound Builders is counted by hundreds of years, that of pre- 
glacial man must be counted by thousands. 

To what degree of civilization the Mound Builders attained 
will perhaps ever remain a matter of conjecture, as they have left 
naught, save the mounds and the articles found in them, upon which 
we can base an opinion. But whatever their status as a civilized 
people, certain it is that the region of which we write was later 
allowed to become an unclaimed and unbroken wilderness. At the 


time of early explorations in this region there were no permanent 
settlements by the white race within what is now a populous terri- 
tory, and with the exception perhaps of a few French traders and 
a few captives among the Indians, there were within it no white 
people. Within this valley there are now several populous and 
prosperous cities, many prosperous towns and villages, and a popu- 
lation of approximately a million people, living under conditions of 
prosperity and happiness, of morality and intelligence not surpassed 
by any community of equal magnitude which has ever existed in 
the history of the world. But we must not forget that another peo- 
ple — another race — occupied this territory between the exodus of 
the Mound Builders and the entrance of the Anglo-Saxons, and 
that here they lived and energized for many centuries, before the 
advent of the white man. And in this introduction to the marvelous 
record of development in the Miami valley it is fitting that mention 
be made of our immediate predecessors, the Indians. 

The Miamis, of the Algonquin linguistic family, occupied all 
the western portion of Ohio, all of Indiana and a large portion of 
what is now the State of Illinois. This tribe had long occupied that 
territory and was once the most numerous and powerful of the 
tribes in the Northwest. They had no tradition of ever having 
lived in any other portion of the country and so they must have 
occupied this territory for many generations. Their principal vil- 
lages were along the headwaters of the two Miamis of the Ohio, 
and the Miami of the Lake (now the Maumee) and along the 
waters of the Wabash in Indiana as far south as the vicinity of 
Vincennes. At the time of the treaty of Greenville they had been 
greatly reduced in numbers and in power, but were the oldest occu- 
pants of the Ohio territory. They claimed the right of possession 
in the territory between the Scioto and the Miamis, and they were 
at one time in possession of and entitled to the same, but in time 
the Wyandots seem to have been accorded the right thereto. In 
the traditions which the Miamis gave of their own history they 
stated that they had been at war with the Cherokees and Chick- 
asaws for so long a period of time that they had no account of 
any time when there had been peace between them. 

As illustrating the fierce nature of the conflicts between the 
tribes north of the Ohio and those south of it in times past, it is 
an important fact that no tribes lived along the banks of that river 
or permanently occupied the contiguous territory. The Ohio as it 
flowed through the wilderness was and has always been considered 
one of the most beautiful rivers on the globe and its banks presented 
every allurement to. and advantages of permanent occupation. Yet, 
there was not on it from its source to its mouth, a distance of more 
than a thousand miles, a single wisfwam or structure in the nature 
of a permanent abode. Gen. William Henry Harrison, in an ad- 
dress before the Historical Society of Ohio, said: 

"Of all this immense territory, the most beautiful portion was 
unoccupied. Numerous villages were to be found on the Scioto and 
the headwaters of the two Miamis of the Ohio ; on the Miami of the 
Lake (the Maumee) and its southern tributaries and throughout 
the whole course of the Wabash, at least as low as the present 


town of Vincennes; but the beautiful Ohio rolled its amber tide 
until it paid its tribute to the "father of waters" through an unbroken 
solitude. At and before that time and for a century after its banks 
were without a town or single village or even a single cottage, the 
curling smoke of whose chimneys would give the promise of com- 
fort and refreshment to a weary traveler." 

There is every reason to believe that it was the ambition and 
effort "of the five nations to subdue, disperse or assimilate all the 
tribes of the Ohio valley," as stated by Dodge, in his "Indians in 
the Ohio valley." But they seem to have been successful only along 
the lake shore. In the hundred years preceding 1750, it is certam 
that many Indian tribes were gravitating towards the navigable 
rivers, rich valleys and fertile fields of Ohio. That was the most 
accessible and advantageous territory between the Great Lakes and 
the "beautiful river." There were easy portages connecting the 
sources of the rivers emptying into the Erie and those debouching 
into the Ohio ; short transfers from the Cuyahoga to the Tus- 
carawas ; the Sandusky to the Scioto ; the Maumee to the Miami 
or to the Wabash. Thus the canoes of traffic and travel from the 
St. Lawrence to the Mississippi would traverse the natural water 
channels of the Ohio country. All roads led to Rome. All rivers 
led to and from Ohio. The cunning red man selected in peace and 
war these avenues of least resistance. Hence the Ohio country was 
a chosen center for the western tribes and in the early half of the 
eighteenth century the tide of permanent settlement was Ohioward. 
The Miamis, chief occupants of Indiana and portions of Illinois, 
spread into the valleys of the Maumee and the Miamis. They were 
divided into three tribes : the Twigtwees, or Miamis, the Pianke- 
shawes and the Weas. Their limits were well defined and doubt- 
less correctly described by Little Turtle: "My father kindled the 
first fire at Detroit ; from thence he extended his lines to the head-" 
waters of the Scioto ; from thence to its mouth ; from thence down 
the Ohio to the mouth of the Wabash, and from thence to Chicago, 
over Lake Michigan. These are the boundaries within which the 
prints of my ancestor's houses are everywhere to be seen." The 
Miamis, who belonged to the Algonquin family, were a powerful 
nation and were undoubtedly among the earliest immigrants into 
Ohio. In their prime, they could command two thousand warriors, 
and it is claimed were the forces that met and repelled the inundat- 
ing waves of the Iroquois. It must be kept in mind that the settle- 
ments of the various tribes, which came into the Ohio country, 
were not permanent, but were more or less shifting as tribal wars, 
white immigration and changing conditions required. The Indian 
above all else is migratory, and if he did not descend from the lost 
tribes of Israel, as many ethnologists claim, he certainly had the 
characteristics of the "wandering Jew." 

It is not quite 170 years since the first white man of which we 
have knowledge visited the locality of the Miami valley. In 1751 
Christopher Gist, accompanied by George Croughtan and Andrew 
Montour, passed over the Indian trail from the forks of the Ohio to 
the Indian towns on the Miami. Gist was the agent of an English 
and Virginia land company. On January 17, 1751, he and his party 


were at the great swamp in what is now Licking county, known to 
us as the "Pigeon Roost," or "Bloody Run Swamp," which is five 
miles northwest from the Licking reservoir and one-half mile south 
of the line of the National road. Thence they proceeded to the 
Miami towns, which were in the region of Xenia and Springfield. 

In 1780, while the Revolutionary war was still in progress, Col. 
Bird, with a detachment of 600 Indians and Canadians, and with 
four pieces of artillery, left Canada, passed up the Maumee over 
to Loramie creek, thence to the Miami, down the same, passed the 
site of what eleven years later was Fort Hamilton, all a wilderness, 
to the Ohio, up the Ohio to the Licking, reduced several American 
frontier stations and returned by the same route with prisoners and 
plunder. And in the same year. Gen. Rogers Clark, with his Ken- 
tuckians, took up his line of march from the site of Cincinnati for 
the Shawnee towns on Little Miami and Mad rivers, which towns 
he destroyed. On this campaign he erected two blockhouses on the 
north side of the Ohio. These were the first structures known to 
have been built on the site of the city of Cincinnati. 

The beautiful country between the Miamis had been so in- 
fested by the Indians that it was avoided by the whites, and its 
settlement might have been procrastinated for years, but for the 
discovery and enterprise of Major Benjamin Stites, a trader from 
New Jersey. In the summer of 1786 Stites happened to be at Wash- 
ington, just back of Limestone, now Maysville, where he headed 
a party of Kentuckians in pursuit of Indians who had stolen 
some horses. The pursuit continued for some days, and the In- 
dians escaped, but Stites gained a view of the rich valleys of the 
Great and Little Miami as far up as the site of Xenia. With this 
knowledge, and charmed by the beauty of the country, he hurried 
back to New Jersey and revealed his discovery to Judge Cleves 
Symmes, of Trenton, a man of great influence. Symmes was about 
forty-four years old, a native of Long Island, had been a colonel 
of militia in the Revolution, and had rendered public service as 
lieutenant-governor of New Jersey, judge of the supreme court 
of that State, and member of the council and of Congress. Stites 
was of a speculative turn of mind and became enthusiastic over the 
possibilities of the Miami valley. He had but little trouble in 
arousing the interest of Symmes, and with the latter was associated 
Gen. Jonathan Dayton, Elias Boudinot, Dr. Witherspoon, and 
other worthies of that day. An association resembling the Ohio, 
or Marietta, company, was formed, Congress was asked (August, 
1787) for a grant <yn the same terms given Rufus Putnam and his 
associates in the Muskingum country. The territory asked for was 
the lands between the two Miamis, as far back as the north line of 
the proposed purchase of the Ohio company. Symmes encoun- 
tered considerable delay on the part of the government, but being of 
an enthusiastic nature, he seems to have taken it for granted that his 
enterprise would be approved, and began disposing of the country, in 
November, by covenanting to deed Stites 10,000 acres of the best 
lands in the valley. This he followed with a glowing prospectus, 
inviting settlers to select lands and avail themselves of the low 
price, two-thirds of a dollar per acre, before it was raised on May 


1, 1888, to one dollar. On his own behalf he reserved the nearest 
entire township to the mouth of the Great Miami, as well as frac- 
tional townships about it, as the site of a proposed city. There 
was a rush for the land bargains, and Matthias Denman, of New 
Jersey, also with a town in view, took up an entire section opposite 
the mouth of Licking river. 

While the settlers at Marietta were busy clearing fields and 
building log houses, in 1788, they were visited, Aug. 27, by the 
advance guard of the Miami colony, led by Symmes, who stopped 
at Marietta for a few days to perform his duties as a lawmaker 
for the territory. He had been appointed judge the preceding 
February, and thus was one of the lawmaking body of the North- 
west territory. The Miami valley was, naturally, a more inviting 
field for settlement than the Muskingum, but it had been avoided 
on account of the Indian hostilities. So frequent were the forays 
of Kentuckians, Shawanees and Wyandots through this beautiful 
valley and among its verdant hills that it had become known as 
the "Miami slaughter house," and future events were to confirm 
the aptness of the title. As late as March, 1788, while Putnam 
and his Marietta colony were coming down the Ohio, a consider- 
able party of explorers, including Samuel Purviance, of Baltimore, 
and some French mineralogists and botanists, were nearly all 
killed or captured by the Indians at the mouth of the Great Miami. 

Stites and a party of settlers landed, Nov. 18, 1788, just below 
the Little Miami, and founded a town called Columbia. Symmes 
and party were on the way, but waited at Limestone (Maysville, 
Ky.) for a military escort, and Denman, without a following, went 
to Lexington, Ky., and formed a partnership with the founder of 
that city. Col. Robert Patterson, a Pennsylvanian who had visited 
Ohio as an officer in the Indian campaigns, and John Filson, a 
Pennsylvania schoolmaster who had become a Kentucky surveyor 
and the first of Kentucky historians. In the deal between these 
three, Denman received $100 in Virginia currency, and the Ken- 
tuckians each a third interest in the section opposite the mouth of 
Licking, where the partners proposed to found a town and call it 
Losantiville. Free lots being offered as ?,n inducement to im- 
mediate settlement, a large company of Ker Tuckians followed Pat- 
terson and Filson to the city cite, where they met Denman, Symmes 
and Israel Ludlow, chief surveyor of the Miami company, Sept. 
22, 1788. A plat had been made by Filson, and the city of Cin- 
cinnati then had its dedication. But the survey and location of 
lots could not be made until Ludlow had ascertained if this section 
were within twenty miles of the mouth of the Great Miami. 

Symmes, in his headlong course as a promoter, had been 
brought to a sudden check by the fact that the treasury board did 
not favor his application for such a great river front, and in view 
of his unauthorized procedure, was disposed to have nothing to do 
with the project. Through the intercession of Gen. Dayton and 
Daniel Marsh, representing Symmes' associates, the board was 
brought to consent to the sale of a twenty-mile front, eastward from 
the mouth of the Great Miami, and running back far enough to 
contain one million acres, and this tract was not formally contracted 


for until three weeks after the preliminary location of Cincinnati 
(October 15, 1788.) The matter was finally settled by a patent to 
Symmes and his associates, September 30, 1794, for the land be- 
tween the two Miamis, and far enough inland to include 311,682 
acres, from which Sections 16 and 29 were reserved for the sup- 
port of education and religion, and 8, 11 and 26 for disposal by Con- 
gress ; also the Fort Washington reservation, and one complete 
township for a college. The latter was finally selected in Butler 
county, though not quite complete, and is the site of Oxford. 

While awaiting the survey, a large part of the adventurers, as 
they called themselves in that day, made an excursion into the in- 
terior to view the promised land and encountered an encampment 
of Indians, from which they turned back. The historian, Filson, 
becoming separated from the party, probably was killed by the 
Shawanese, as he was never again heard from. The adventurers 
all returned to Kentucky or the east. Ludlow became the succes- 
sor of Filson in the partnership. Symmes went to Limestone, and 
waited for the conclusion of a new treaty with the Indians to in- 
sure peace. This desired treaty was concluded by Gov, St. Clair at 
Fort Harmar, January 8, 1789, reaffirming the bounds set by the 
treaty of Fort Mcintosh, as the fruit of conquest. The Iroquois 
chief, Joseph Brant, approached the council place, but did not par- 
ticipate, and it afterward appeared that the Indians present were 
unauthorized to bind their tribes to cede any lands northwest of 
the Ohio. Romance has it that Brant was met in the forest by his 
former acquaintance, the Governor's daughter, Louisa St. Clair, 
whose horsemanship and skill with the rifle was the admiration 
of the frontier. 

Meanwhile, about Christmas, 1788, or New Year's, 1789, Pat- 
terson and Ludlow and a small party returned to Losantiville, and 
began laying out town lots, and the first settlers of that city gathered 
to select their property. "On the 24th of December, 1788," says 
Symmes, in one of his letters, "they left Maysville to form a station 
and lay a town opposite the Licking." The river was filled with 
ice "from shore to shore," but "perseverance triumphing over diffi- 
culty, they landed safe on a most delightful high bank of the Ohio, 
where they founded the town of Losantiville, which populates con- 
siderably." James H. Perkins, in his Annals of the West, points 
out that the day of the settlement is unknown. "Some, suppos- 
ing it would take about two days to make the voyage, have dated the 
being of the Queen City of the West from December 26. This is 
but guesswork, however, for as the river was full of ice, it might 
have taken ten days to have gone the sixty-five miles from Mays- 
ville to Licking. But, in the case in chancery, to which we have 
referred, we have the evidence of Patterson and Ludlow that they 
landed opposite the Licking in the month of January, 1789; while 
William McMillan testifies that he 'was one of those who formed 
the settlement of Cincinnati on the 28th day of December, 1788.' " 

But it is quite certain that Symmes and his party were delayed 
until late in January. Then, on coming down the river to Fort 
Finney, the country about it was found under water. The dis- 
gusted military officer abandoned the fort to go to Louisville, but 


Symmes landed upon the nearest dry spot and began a town, which 
was given his name. With the advent of pioneer recruits, North 
Bend was established a few miles up the river. Which of the vari- 
ous locations should be the center of development was in doubt un- 
til Symmes' appeal for military protection led to the placing of an 
army post. Ensign Luce and eighteen men built a stockade at 
North Bend and occupied it several months, but there was an In- 
dian attack in the spring of 1789 that stampeded the inhabitants. 
Then Major Doughty came down with a larger force and in the 
summer of 1789 selected Losantiville as the best position and built 
a stockade that he called Fort Washington. The story was told by 
Judge Jacob Burnet that the commanding officer became "enamored 
with a beautiful, black-eyed female," at North Bend, whom her 
husband took to Cincinnati, whereupon the officer decided that 
the latter was the best strategic position. "This anecdote was com- 
municated by Judge Symmes," said Burnet, "and is unquestionably 
authentic," but Judge Symmes was much offended at the officer. 
Gen. Josiah Harmar, commanding the regular army of the 
United States, which was composed of his regiment of infantry 
and Major Doughty's battalion of artillery, occupied this fort with 
the main part of his command, December 29, 1789, and Gov. St. 
Clair, stopping there on his way to the Wabash and Mississippi, 
established, January 2, 1790, a new county, which Symmes named 
in honor of Alexander Hamilton. The name of the town St. Clair 
changed to commemorate the title of the new military order, the 
Cincinnati. This county included the country between the Miamis 
back to the Standing Stone forks of the larger river. Cincinnati, 
as the seat of an unsettled county, began, in a squalid and barren 
fashion, its history as the metropolis of the Ohio valley. In 1792 
(February 11), Gov. St. Clair extended the county jurisdiction to 
include all west of the Scioto and a line north from the lower Sha- 
wanee down to Sandusky bay, and east of a line from Standing 
Stone forks of the Great Miami to Lake Huron, including all East- 
ern Michigan. 

In 1795, Gen. Wayne had made a treaty with the Indians, at 
Greenville, by which the line of the lands of the United States had 
been extended from Loramie's, westward to Fort Recovery, and 
thence southward to the mouth of the Kentucky river. The boundary 
of Hamilton county was extended westward, June 22, 1798, to make 
it correspond with this change in the boundary of the government 
territory. The line between Hamilton and Knox counties then 
became: "The western boundary of the county of Hamilton shall 
begin at the spot, on the bank of the Ohio river, where the general 
boundary line of the United States and the Indian tribes, estab- 
lished at Greenville the third day of August, 1795, intersects the 
bank of that river, and run with that general boundary line to Fort 
Recovery, and from thence by a line to be drawn due north from 
Fort Recovery, until it intersects the southern boundary line of the 
county of Wayne, and from thence to the southern boundary of the 
county of Wayne, shall also be the eastern boundary of the county 
of Knox." Hamilton county in this way got a part of Knox county, 
and a part of what is now Indiana. 


The settlements mentioned were not to enjoy peaceful condi- 
tions for a number of years. The Miami valley, as a part of the 
Northwest territory had passed to the United States and had been 
opened to their people. But the Indians were still in a large measure 
its occupants and in some degree its owners. They began to feel 
the pressure of the white settlements, and they began to commit 
depredations and destroy property and even lives of the settlers. 

Gen. Josiah Harmar, a Revolutionary veteran, was appointed 
Commander-in-Chief of the United States army, September 29, 1789, 
and was at once directed to proceed against the Indians. He cen- 
tered a force of some fifteen hundred men at Fort Washington 
(Cincinnati). His army consisted of some three hundred regulars 
and eleven hundred "militia," which really meant indiscriminate 
volunteers mostly from Kentucky, aged men and inexperienced boys, 
many of whom had never fired a gun. "There were guns without 
locks and barrels without stocks, borne by men who did not know 
how to oil a lock or fit a flint." With this "outfit" Gen. Harmar 
proceeded (September 30, 1790), 'into the heart of the Indian coun- 
try, around the headwaters of the Maumee and the Miami. The 
Indians, less than two hundred, say the historians, led by the Miami 
warrior, Chief Little Turtle, divided the army, defeated and routed 
them, and Harmar, chagrined and humiliated, retreated to Fort 
Washington after suffering great loss of men. It was a stunning 
blow and created dismay and terror among the Miami valley set- 
tlers. The Indians were highly elated and emboldened to further 
and more aggressive attacks upon their white enemies. 

It was now evident to the government that large measures 
must be taken to establish the authority of the United States among 
the Indians and protect their Ohio settlements. Washington called 
Gov, St. Clair to Philadelphia, and with the approval of Congress 
placed him in command of an army to be organized for a new In- 
dian expedition. On October 4, 1791, Gen, St. Clair, at the head 
of some three thousand troops, hardly better in quality than those 
under Harmar, set out from Fort Washington. The plan was to 
proceed northward along the present western line of the state and 
establish a line of Forts to be properly maintained as permanent 
points for military operation and protection. Forts Hamilton, St. 
Clair and Jefferson, the latter near Greenville, were erected. But 
when the expedition, now about twenty-five hundred strong, had 
reached a branch of the Wabash in what is now Mercer county, 
some thirty miles from Fort Jefferson, it was attacked by an allied 
force of Indians, fifteen hundred strong, under Little Turtle. It 
was a desperate, irregular combat, the troops were completely 
demoralized and panic stricken, and indulged in "a most ignominious 
flight," with the woeful loss of over six hundred killed and two 
hundred and fifty wounded, a loss equal to that of the American 
army at Germantown, when Gen. Washington suffered one of the 
worst defeats and greatest losses of the Revolution. 

The Indian question had now become more serious than ever 
before, and there was great danger of the disaffection spreading 
among the Six Nations, with whom the whites had been at peace 
since the treaty of Fort Harmar. Washington anxiously scanned 


the list of officers for a reliable successor to St. Clair. The choice 
finally fell upon Anthony Wayne, the dashing, intrepid hero of 
Ticonderoga, Germantown, Monmouth and the storming of Stony 
Point. Wayne arrived at Fort Washington in April, 1793, and by 
October had recruited his army and was ready to move. He cau- 
tiously crept his way into the interior as far as Fort Greenville, 
which he erected, and where he spent the winter, and whence he 
forwarded a detachment of several hundred to build Fort Recovery, 
in commemoration of the defeat of St. Clair, at that point. This 
fortification was attacked by the advancing Indians, one thousand 
strong, under their puissant general. Little Turtle, who made a 
desperate charge only to be repulsed and compelled to retreat. It 
was their first serious check. In August, 1794, Wayne with his 
"Legion," as his army was called, reached the confluence of the 
Auglaize and Maumee. Here he established another link in the 
chain of forts, named Defiance. The Indian allies had concentrated 
about thirty miles down the river at the rapids of the Maumee, 
near the British fort, Miami, one of the post retained by the Eng- 
lish at the close of the Revolutionary war and then recently reoccu- 
pied by an English garrison from Detroit, under the direction of 
John G. Simcoe, lieutenant-governor of Canada. The field chosen 
for battle was at the Falls of the Maumee on the wind swept banks, 
covered with fallen timber. The savages were outwitted and over- 
whelmed. They fled in wild dismay toward the British fort. Wayne's 
triumph (August 20, 1794), was complete, the brilliant and dash- 
ing, victory of Stony Point was won again. The Indian warfare 
was shattered, and the red man began to realize his critical condi- 
tion. The famous Greenville treaty was entered into in August, 
1795, between Gen. Wayne for the United States and the repre- 
sentatives, over eleven hundred in all, of some eleven leading In- 
dian tribes. This treaty removed that influence which for six years 
had prevented the development of the colony planted in the Miami 
valley, and it was now possible to extend settlements uninterrupted 
into that region. 

At the time of the Treaty of Greenville there were gathered 
under the protection of Fort Washington and close to the stockades 
of Columbia, North Bend, and the dozen or more stations in that 
vicinity, several hundred anxious settlers who hailed that event as 
the beginning of an era of peace and security and an opportunity 
for better times. "The return of peace gave them new ambitions 
and new hopes." They removed from their forts into the adjacent 
country, selected farms, built cabins, and began to subdue the for- 
ests. So decisive was this movement that, for a time, the curious 
phenomenon presented itself of settlements like Cincinnati, North 
Bend and Columbia, in a new and growing country, actually los- 
ing a large part of their population. In evidence of this. Miller, in 
his Cincinnati's Beginnings, says that Judge Symmes wrote to 
Jonathan Dayton, August 6, 1795, that North Bend was reduced 
more than one-half in its number of inhabitants since he had left 
to go to New Jersey, in February, 1793; that the people had spread 
themselves into all parts of the purchase below the military range 
since the Indian defeat on August 20, and that the cabins were 


deserted by dozens in a street. Another thing that had in some 
measure contributed to this exodus was the demand that Symmes 
had made on all volunteer settlers to go out and improve on their 
forfeitures in the course of the year, as the truce with the Indians 
afforded a very favorable opportunity for the purpose. 

News of the treaty also accelerated the westward movement 
and deflected to the northwest territory many of those who other- 
wise probably would have gone into Kentucky. And many people 
who had settled below the Ohio river when the Indian wars were 
raging north of it now crossed the river and became numbered 
with the settlers in the future states of Ohio. Four important cen- 
ters of settlement within the present limits of the state received the 
newcomers, the Western Reserve in the neighborhood of Cleveland, 
the Marietta district, the Scioto district in the neighborhood of 
Chillicothe, and the Miami valley. 

These settlers were engaged for a time almost exclusively in 
the primitive occupations of the wilderness. They built their own 
cabins and made for themselves a rude sort of necessary furniture 
and utensils. Preparatory to the development of a clearing the 
trees were deadened and soon a crop of Indian corn was planted to 
supply the necessities of the family. And the pioneer was a hunter 
as well as a primitive farmer. His time was occupied for several 
seasons with clearing the forest, securing a sufficient food supply, 
and possibly improving his cabin so that it would be more habitable. 
His limitations under such circumstances did not permit him to pro- 
duce a surplus, and so he was enabled to buy little or nothing. He 
and his family were compelled to be manufacturers of a primitive 
sort, as store goods were necessarily denied them. They dressed 
in clothing made of skins or flax raised and spun and woven at home. 
An important step in advance was made when a few sheep were 
secured and linsey woolsey was substituted for cloth of pure flax. 
In some instances the pioneer was only a squatter, while in others 
he had enough money to make the first payment on his land and 
thus held the title in his own name. 

From the very beginning of this great rush of individual set- 
tlers "men of capital and enterprise in the older settlements be- 
came interested in securing claims and titles to extensive bodies of 
land and in leading forth colonies for their occupation," says 
Monette, in his History of the Mississippi Valley. Seventeen days 
after the conclusion of the treaty of Greenville, a company composed 
of a number of gentlemen who were prominent in the affairs of the 
Northwest territory made a joint purchase of land from John 
Cleves Symmes and subsequently laid out the town of Dayton at 
the junction of the Great Miami and Mad rivers. Those interested 
were : Winthrop Sargent, Secretary of the Territory ; Gen. James 
Wilkinson, Jonathan Dayton, who was one of the original owners 
of the Miami purchase, and Israel Ludlow. The last named had 
already identified himself with the early history of Cincinnati by 
surveying the town site and also establishing Ludlow's Station, 
now Cumminsville. In December, 1794, he had laid out the town 
of Hamilton, under the protection of Fort Hamilton on the Great 
Miami, and now he was called upon to lay out what was to become 


the first city of importance in the Miami valley, north of Cin- 

But Judge Turner seems to have anticipated the founders of 
Dayton, for on the day before they had completed their purchase 
from Symmes the Centinel of the Northwest Territory published 
an advertisement, saying that, "Encouragement will be given to the 
first ten families who will go and form a station on a tov^/nship of 
land lying with a front of several miles upon the eastern bank of 
Mad river." And in the following March, Robert Benham, who 
appears to have been agent for Turner, advertised in the same 
periodical a sale of lots in the town of Turnerville on Mad or Chille- 
kothi river. 

An unusual thing in that early day was an editorial in a 
frontier newspaper, but following Wayne's treaty with the In- 
dians the rush of population to the Mad river country was of such 
importance as to induce Editor Maxwell, of the Centinel, to pro- 
duce the following, in his issue of April 2, 1796: 

"It is with great satisfaction that we can annoimce to our 
readers the rapid strides of population and improvement on the 
frontiers of this country. The banks of the Mad (or as called by 
the Indians) Chillekothi river, display at this moment hopeful ap- 
pearances. But yesterday that country was a waste, the range of 
savages and prowling beasts ; today we see stations formed, towns 
building, and the population spreading. At the mouth of the river 
on the eastern side now stands the town of Dayton, in which are 
already upwards of forty cabins and houses, with the certain pros- 
pect of many more. Three and twenty miles above this in the forks 
of the river, a town called Turnerville will shortly be laid out on an 
admired plan, and from whose situation many advantages may be 
expected, as roads to the lakes and Pittsburgh intersect at this 
point. Stations in the neighborhood are already in forewardness, 
and a mill will shortly be built on a fine never failing seat within a 
mile or two from town. Two stores of goods will be opened there 
in the course of the Spring. * * * Thus we have a certain 
prospect of a flourishing frontier, that in the case of a renewal of 
Indian hostilities, will be a shield to the older and more popular 
settlements within the Miami Purchase." 

Individual settlements were pushing up the ivalley of the 
Little Miami and in 1798 the town of Waynesville was located in 
the wilderness on the banks of that river. In the opening year of 
the new century we find Judge Symmes again active in a personal 
endeavor to extend the frontier. The Western Spy, published at 
Cincinnati, of March 26, 1800, contains a communication from him 
calling a meeting at John Lyon's tavern on Millcreek of those gen- 
tlemen who intended to become adventurers on "Scioto and Whet- 
stone waters" to enter into articles of regulation, elect a foreman 
and inform each other who would furnish wagons, oxen or horses, 
for the purpose of transporting utensils of husbandry and provisions 
to the new settlement. In one week after the meeting the party 
was to march in a body to the place of settlement with their wagons, 
pack horses, cattle, sheep and hogs. 

But before their dreams could be realized these ambitious town 


builders were compelled to wait for a further agricultural develop- 
ment. At first the best that they could hope for was a limited 
population of the squatter class and possibly an occasional farmer, 
who settled in or near one of these proposed towns in hopes of a 
larg-er social intercourse, than could be secured on a wilderness 
farm. 1333087 

The area of unoccupied land was so great, notwithstanding the 
great movement of population to the Northwest territory, that for 
many years after the treaty of Greenville most of the country was 
sparsely settled and large areas of native forest remained untouched. 
In 1797, a traveler passing in a northwesterly direction from Man- 
chester to the Little Miami river found but one cabin on the trace 
between those points. That one was built by a Mr. Van Metre, 
about seven miles from where Newmarket, Highland county, is now 
located. A man by the name of Wood had built a mill on the little 
Miami and there were several cabins in that vicinity. On the re- 
turn trip the same traveler passed but two homes between Cincin- 
nati and Chillicothe. Bailey, in his Journal of a Tour, tells of pass- 
ing down the Ohio in 1797 and remarks that "this tract of country 
lying between the two Miamis is the only properly settled country 
on the north side of the Ohio ; for though there are a few scattered 
plantations along the banks of the Ohio, and on some of the rivers 
which run into it, yet they are too widely diffused to assume any 
corporate form." But at this time the whole southern bank of 
the Ohio, from Limestone to Louisville, had begun to assume a 
civilized appearance, according to the same writer. 

About 30,000 settlers found their way into Ohio in the first 
five years following the treaty of Greenville, and thus the popu- 
lation was increased from about 15,000, in 1795, to about 45,000, in 
1800, a gain of 200 per cent. Of this number, 14,629 were living 
in Hamilton county. However, it must be remembered that at that 
time Hamilton county included practically the entire Miami valley. 
Its eastern boundary was identical with the present eastern boundary 
of Clermont county to the northeast corner of that county, and from 
there it extended north to the Indian treaty line. The treaty line 
formed both its northern and western boundaries, and Hamilton 
county thus included a small part of what is now Southeastern In- 
diana. This gave Hamilton county at that time an area of about 
4,000 square miles and a population of a little over three and a 
half persons per square mile. That part of the Miami valley west 
of the river and north of the latitude of Dayton was almost en- 
tirely unoccupied. 

That speculation in land became a flourishing business is indi- 
cated by the numerous newspaper advertisements of the time, and 
the land law of 1800 did much to accelerate the movement of popu- 
lation into the Miami valley. For the next few years almost every 
edition of the Cincinnati papers contained numerous advertisements 
of land for sale. Small tracts were sometimes offered, but gen- 
erally the advertisements were for tracts of from 500 to 2,000 acres. 
Proximity to a mill site or a navigable stream, or on a road recently 
laid out, or near a community already somewhat settled added much 
to the value of the land. Notwithstanding that a large area had 


been opened to settlement by the land law of 1800, and the minimum 
price had been fixed at $2 per acre, the price continued to advance, 
according to the Western Spy and Miami Gazette of November, 
1815, especially near the few towns that were beginning to become 
local centers of industry and trade. And Melish, in his Travels 
in the United States, says that in 1805 good land near the mouth 
of the Great Miami was offered at $6.50 per acre, and that as 
late as 1809 uncleared land could be purchased as low as $5 per 

By 1805 immigration to Ohio and the Miami valley was truly 
astonishing. Says the American Pioneer: "New settlements and 
improvements were springing up along the banks of the Ohio; 
and the busy hum of civilization was heard where silence had reigned 
for ages, except when broken by the scream of the panther, the 
howl of the wolf or the yell of the savage." There were no less 
than twelve towns in the distance between Cincinnati and Lime- 
stone, and some of them were of considerable importance. Espy, 
in his Memorandum of a Tour, estimated that from 20,000 to 30,- 
000 immigrants had come into Ohio within that year. Many of 
them who settled in Southern Ohio came from the southern states, 
whence they had emigrated to escape the environment of slavery. 
The Western Spy and Miami Gazette of January 8, 1806, says that 
one ferry at Cincinnati, within eight months of 1805, transported 
2,629 immigrants from the southern states. Of that number North 
Carolina furnished 463, South Carolina 669, Kentucky 568, Ten- 
nessee 200, Virginia 465, and Georgia 264. It is difficult to say what 
proportion of this population from the south settled in the Miami 
valley, but it must have been small in comparison with the number 
of settlers arriving from the free states. According to the Cin- 
cinnati directory for 1825, the immigrants from the southern states 
and their descendants then living in Cincinnati formed but 14 per 
cent of the inhabitants. 

The most important centers of population in the interior at this 
time were Dayton and Lebanon. In 1806 Dayton contained about 
forty houses, was situated in the midst of a prosperous farming 
community, and an excellent beaten public road, the borders of 
which were sprinkled with settlements and neat and improved 
farms, connected that town with Hamilton. And Ash, in his 
Travels in the United States, says that Lebanon was situated in 
the midst of a fine agricultural region that had been settled within 
five years, and that it had a church and schoolhouse and a popula- 
tion of about 200 inhabitants, living in neat log and frame houses. 
Other towns not heretofore mentioned that were marked on Rufus 
Putnam's map, which was published in 1804, were Newtown, Wil- 
liamsburg, and Deerfield. This map, prepared by the Surveyor- 
General of the United States, near the beginning of the last cen- 
tury, located but ten towns in the Miami valley, and none of them, 
except Cincinnati, was much more than a collection of log cabins. 

This great increase in population in the Miami valley between 
1795 and 1805 must have meant considerable agricultural develop- 
ment and the production of a surplus that the farmer would desire 
to exchange for commodities that he could not produce. This sur- 


plus was the basis of the early commerce of the Miami valley; and 
the improvement in means of transportation and the building of a 
commercial system were two most important questions that the 
pioneers had to meet. And this surplus called for a trade center 
to which the produce of the region might be brought for export and 
from which also imported goods could be distributed. The build- 
ing of Fort Washington at Cincinnati had given that place an ad- 
vantage over other points in the Symmes purchase during the In- 
dian wars, and to the remainder of the Miami valley, it was the 
most accessible point on the Ohio. It at once became the metropolis. 

In early settlements there have always been a number of the 
well-to-do among the settlers who were prepared to buy some of 
the conveniences of life, even at frontier prices. To accommodate 
such as these, traders followed closely the advance line of the 
frontier; therefore, soon after the founding of Columbia and Losanti- 
ville, there were merchants in the Miami valley who were prepared 
to furnish to the army and to the settlers whiskey and tobacco and 
some of the more necessary articles of eastern and foreign produc- 
tion. Although such commercial operations must have been limited 
because of the small number of immigrants who were prepared to 
indulge in the luxury of store goods, there were several merchants 
advertising groceries and dry goods for sale in Cincinnati before 
the time of Wayne's victory. Judging by an advertisement which 
appeared in the Centinel of Northwest Territory on November 29, 
1793, and again on January 4 and February 22, 1794, one enter- 
prising tradesman even considered that this frontier community 
had so far advanced in the scale of civilization as to be a market 
for imported wines. And in the same newspaper, on Nov. 30, 
1793, another advertised that he would receive corn, beef, pork, but- 
ter, cheese, potatoes, furs and skins at his store in Columbia, in 
exchange for merchandise, groceries, etc. 

But beyond the sale of a few commodities to the settlers under 
the protection of the guns at Fort Washington, there was no op- 
portunity for an extension of commercial operations before the 
treaty of Greenville, but following that, trade was much stimulated 
by the rush of population to the Miami valley, as most of the immi- 
grants to this region landed at Cincinnati, and perhaps not a few 
of them bought some necessaries before breaking into the wilder- 
ness. It was also increased by the fact that Cincinnati became the 
grand depot for stores that came down the Ohio, bound for the 
forts that were located near the Indian treaty line, as we are in- 
formed by Bailey, in his Journal of a Tour. 

These pioneer merchants were usually young men with abun- 
dant energy and small capital. McBride, in his Pioneer Biography 
of Butler county, says that such a one would purchase a stock of 
goods in Philadelphia or Baltimore and transport it in wagons 
over rough roads to Pittsburg at a cost of from $6 to $10 per 
hundredweight. There he would buy a flatboat or a keel-boat, 
load his goods in it, and float them down the river. He was usually 
unacquainted with the stream, and if the water was low he would 
be frequently in danger from sand bars, snags and other obstruc- 
tions. If fortunate he would reach Cincinnati within fifteen or 


twenty days. Perhaps he would stop there, or maybe hire a team 
and haul his goods to one of the inland settlements. 

Referring again to the Centinel of the Northwest Territory, 
issue of May 23, 1795, one of those pioneer merchants, having es- 
tablished himself, advertised that he had just arrived from Phila- 
delphia with a large assortment of dry goods and groceries which 
he would sell on very low terms for cash only. These merchants 
usually found, however, that frontier conditions were unfavorable 
to the maintenance of cash sales; yet the general impression pre- 
vailed that these early dealers made enormous profits and generally 
were able to increase their stock as rapidly as the expanding busi- 
ness of the country demanded. But this early business of supplying 
eastern goods to settlers admitted of little expansion, for any con- 
siderable commercial development must depend upon the produc- 
tion of a surplus of agriculutral products. As the Miami valley 
was rich in agricultural possibilities, the energetic pioneer farmer 
did not keep trade w-aiting long for those products that were to 
furnish the basis of early commerce. 

But for the first ten years following the treaty of Greenville, 
the growth of Cincinnati was slower than for any succeeding period 
of its early development, nor did it in any way keep up with the 
development of the Miami valley. In 1795 the population was about 
500. By 1805 it had increased to about 960. This was an average 
increase of forty-six persons, or less than 10 per cent per year. In 
all it amounted to 90.2 per cent in ten years, whereas the increase of 
the Miami valley for the same period was about 480 per cent. This 
relatively slow increase may be easily understood when we re- 
member that in 1795 the Miami valley, outside of the few settle- 
ments on or near the Ohio, was an uninhabited region and could 
supply nothing as a basis of commercial life. Agriculture must be 
developed before there could be any considerable growth in the 
towns of the region. So, while the preliminary house-raising, and 
clearing and planting was going on, Cincinnati in a great measure 
seemed to have been playing a waiting game. She could do nothing 
else. She received great numbers of immigrants and retained but 
a few of them. A few incomplete pictures have been left, in the 
Cincinnati directory of 1819 and in Burnet's Notes on the Settlement 
of the Northwest Territory, that may in some degree assist us in an 
appreciation of the growth of Cincinnati during the first decade 
following the treaty. In 1795 the 500 inhabitants were housed in 
ninety-four log cabins and ten frame houses, and the public im- 
provements, aside from Fort Washington, consisted of an un- 
finished frame schoolhouse, a strong log building occupied as a jail 
and a Presbyterian church. The jail was ornamented with a pillory, 
stocks, and whipping post. The church was a building, 40x30, en- 
closed with clapboards, neither lathed, plastered nor ceiled. The 
floor was of boat plank laid loosely on sleepers and the seats were 
of the same material supported by blocks of wood; 

In the work called American Pioneer it is stated that by 1805 
the log cabins of Cincinnati had decreased to fifty-three and the 
frame buildings then numbered 109. There were also six brick 
and four stone houses. The town boasted of two churches, a court 


house and a prison. Large warehouses had arisen near the water 
for the storing of groceries and merchandise, brought up in barges 
and keel boats from New Orleans. The abandonment of Fort 
Washington, which occurred in 1803, was probably the most 
significant change to be noticed. Like all other frontier forts of 
its kind, when no longer needed, it was falling into decay. In 1808 
the government sold the property and the land was soon afterward 
divided into city lots. Says Mansfield in his Memoirs of Dr. Daniel 
Drake : "The enlivening notes of the fife and drum at Reveille were 
no longer heard, and the loud booming of the morning gun as it 
rolled its echoes along the hills and the winding shores along the 
river had ceased to awaken the inhabitants from their slumbers. 
* * * The enlivening hum of commerce was now beginning to be 
heard on the landings, while the hustle and hurry of hundreds of 
immigrants thronged the streets as they took their departure for 
the rich valleys on the banks of the Miamis." 

However, the streets were yet in a state of nature and the roads 
consisted of traces of narrow pathways, almost impassable on ac- 
count of mud, stumps and roots. According to the Cincinnati di- 
rectory for 1819, in what is now the very heart of the city many 
of the forest trees were still standing and the trunks of others which 
had been cut down encumbered the ground for several years after- 
ward. Such in brief, was the metropolis of the Miami valley ten 
years after the treaty of Greenville. (Treaty signed in 1795.) 

We have seen that the decade between 1795 and 1805 was a 
period of locating first setlements and clearing new farms. A few 
towns were located and the more important roads were marked 
out. The production of a surplus was begun, a commercial system 
had been organized and the manufacture of a few articles had com- 
menced on a small scale. Yet the entire region retained its former 
character and the development of the Miami valley was only be- 
gun. After the demands of the home were met, those farmers who 
were near Cincinnati or some other center into which the settlers 
were moving, found a limited market among the newcomers. A 
little later the surplus corn, wheat, pork, whiskey, etc., began to 
demand a larger market, and no place in the Mississippi valley 
could furnish such a market, as the entire region was agricultural 
in character. The long and expensive haul prevented sending this 
surplus over the mountains to the east, and so the only outlet was 
by flat-boat down the Ohio and Mississippi rivers to New Orleans, 
there to reshipped to the eastern seaboard or to a foreign market. 
But the attitude of Spanish officials toward this trade was unsettled 
and wavering. High tariffs for the privilege of deposit and reship- 
ment were the rule, and it was not uncommon for whole cargoes to 
be confiscated. This situation, however, had existed prior to the 
Spanish treaty of Oct. 27, 1795, which gave Americans the free 
navigation of the Mississippi and allowed them to use New Orleans 
as a place of deposit and reshipment. The adjustment of this diffi- 
culty with Spain was of much importance to the older settlements 
south of the Ohio, and it came at an opportune moment for the 
Miami valley. Two months before that event, the Treaty of Green- 
ville had been signed, and by 1805 all of those western influences 


that affected immigration were in full force. The first break into 
the wilderness had been made, it was seen that the land would pro- 
duce abundantly, favorable land laws had been passed, Ohio had 
become a state, and the annexation of Louisiana had removed every 
obstacle to the free navigation of the Mississippi river. These in- 
fluences, combined with the decline of commerce and the hard times 
that followed as a result of the embargo of 1807, sent an increasing 
number of settlers into the west, and no section profited by this 
more than did the Miami valley. 

But other problems presented themselves for solution in the 
matter of marketing the surplus products of the farms. In the first 
place, there were no roads over which produce might be transported. 
As centers of population grew, trails were made which later were 
developed into wagon routes, but it was many years before any of 
these were passable for loaded wagons, except in the most favor- 
able seasons. The forest must be cleared, improvements on the 
farms must be made, and population must be increased before 
highway construction could proceed on any considerable scale. 
Before 1809 roads had been located connecting the principal towns 
of this region, and four principal routes extended from Cincinnati 
through Southwestern Ohio and one through Kentucky to Lexing- 
ton. One of these roads led up the Ohio to Columbia and from 
there through Williamsburg, Newmarket and Bainbridge to Chilli- 
cothe ; another led down the river to Cleves. Two roads led to the 
north — one to Lebanon and the other through Hamilton and Frank- 
lin to Dayton. Dayton v/as also connected with Springfield, Urbana 
and Piqua. The road to Hamilton followed the old military trail 
used by St. Clair and Wayne. From Hamilton a road led north- 
west to Eaton and another led eastward through Lebanon to Chilli- 
cothe. Those highways connecting points in the Miami valley with 
Chillicothe were of particular importance, as they joined, some 
miles east of that point, with the main road to the east. Melish, in 
his Travels in the United States, says that this was originally the 
trace located by Ebenezer Zane, in 1795, extending from Wheeling 
to Maysville via Zanesville, Lancaster and Chillicothe. 

Between 1800 and 1810 Hamilton county had been subdivided 
by the admission of Ohio and by the formation of new counties. 
Eight of these new counties lie entirely within the original bound- 
aries of Hamilton county and in 1810 returned a population of 75,- 
349, or more than one-third of the population of the entire state. 
This was an average of a little more than twenty-one persons per 
square mile, whereas the average of the entire state was 5.8 per 
square mile. Hamilton county showed a density of 38 persons per 
square mile; Butler county 36; Warren 23; Montgomery 15; and 
Miami 9.9. Within the present boundaries of Hamilton county 
alone there were living 629 more people than occupied the whole 
Miami country a decade before. 

Although numerous roads had been laid out in Southwestern 
Ohio before the beginning of the War of 1812, no effort had been 
made to improve them, and they were impassable for a loaded 
wagon the greater part of the year. This condition must have re- 
tarded the agricultural development of the country, and during the 


war it so seriously interfered with the movements of the north- 
western army as to bring about a proposal for a series of military 
roads. And the war seems to have retarded immigration to some 
extent, as an estimate made in 1815 gave the average density of 
population in the Miami country as but twenty-three to the square 
mile. Generally speaking, the growth of the towns was hardly 
keeping pace with the development of the country, although a few 
of them were growing rapidly. In Dayton the number of houses 
was doubled within three years, and in 1809 it contained a brick 
courthouse and four other brick buildings. South of Third street 
was called Cabin Town, while on Main street were located thirteen 
log cabins, two frame and two small brick houses, a tavern and a 
courthouse. Within the same period the number of houses in 
Lebanon had increased from about forty to about one hundred ; 
while Franklin had about sixty houses and was rapidly increasing. 
Columbia and Hamilton both seemed to suffer by the influence of 
more favorably situated Cincinnati. Columbia, although established 
more than twenty years, contained but forty houses, and Hamilton, 
the first town to be laid out in the interior of the Miami valley after 
Wayne's victory, had ten or fifteen, according to Cutler, in his 
description of Ohio. By 1815 there were about ten towns in the 
Miami country that contained forty or more houses, but Kilbourn, in 
the Ohio Gazetteer, says that not more than four of them, except 
Cincinnati, contained as many as 100. Troy was as yet only a vil- 
lage of a few cabins. 

The general advance of the section is probably well indicated 
in the rise in value of real estate. The following estimate was made 
by Dr. Drake in 1815: Within three miles of Cincinnati the price 
of good unimproved land was between $50 and $150 per acre. From 
this limit to the extent of twelve miles from the city land ranged in 
value from $10 to $30 per acre. Near the principal villages of the 
Miami valley the price was from $20 to $40 per acre, and in more 
remote sections from $4 to $8. An average for the settled por- 
tions of the valley, for fertile and uncultivated land, may be stated 
at $8 per acre, and if cultivated at $12 per acre. 

The rapid development of the valley soon brought about the 
production of an ever increasing surplus that furnished the basis of 
a commerce that was to build up Cincinnati as a metropolis. The 
very slow growth of that city during the first decade following the 
treaty of Greenville has already been noted, but by 1805 products 
were flowing in that direction for export in such quantity as great- 
ly to increase the commerce and accelerate the growth of popula- 
tion. The census of 1810 returned a population of 2,320, which 
showed a gain of 201 per cent within five years; while within the 
preceding decade the gain had been but 90 per cent. The War of 
1812 seems to have retarded slightly the growth of population in 
the metropolis, as well as in the tributary region, but regardless of 
that the population had grown to about 6,000 by 1815. This was a 

fain of 158 per cent, or about 43 per cent less than for the preceding 
ve years. 

In Cuming's Tour, Thwaite's Travels, a traveler of the year 1808 
described Cincinnati as covering more ground and seeming to con- 


tain nearly as many houses as Lexington. Many of the houses 
were of brick, generally well built, and had an air of neatness about 
them that was characteristic of Connecticut and New Jersey, from 
which many of the settlers came. Some of the new brick houses 
were three stories high, with flat roofs, and one four stories high 
was then building. The Burnet residence, at Third and Vine, and 
the Suydam residence, where Sedamsville was afterward located, 
were the most imposing. 

For a knowledge of Cincinnati immediately before and after 
the War of 1812, we are largely indebted to Dr. Daniel Drake, one 
of the most honored citizens in the early days of the city. As a 
boy he settled there when it was a small village composed largely 
of log cabins. He continued to reside in Cincinnati, with the ex- 
ception of a brief interval, until the time of his death, some time in 
the fifties ; and in his time no man surpassed him in promoting the 
economic and intellectual welfare of the community of his adoption. 
In 1810 he published Notices Concerning Cincinnati, the first of a 
long line of books, describing the Queen City of the West. This 
little book gives but a brief glimpse of the frontier metropolis, as 
the most of it is taken up with topographical and other physical 
conditions of the Miami valley. Five years later he published A 
Natural and Statistical View of Cincinnati, which gives a good 
picture of the then youthful western city. It was written for the 
purpose of encouraging immigration, but its evident honesty and 
sincerity is in striking contrast with pamphlets that have been 
issued by some boom towns of a more recent period. This booklet 
states that in 1810 the residents of Cincinnati were domiciled in 360 
dwelling houses, chiefly of brick and wood; about two-thirds of 
them were in the bottom and the rest were "on the hill." Main 
street, the principal thoroughfare, was well built up to Sixth or 
Seventh, but as yet all of the streets were unimproved. The town 
contained a courthouse, three market houses, two printing offices, a 
bank of issue and about thirty mercantile stores. 

To the same source we turn for the chief facts about the subject 
of our study at the close of the War of 1812. By this time the 
population of Cincinnati was not far from that of Pittsburg, and 
by 1820 it exceeded that of Pittsburg by 2,359. It extended a half 
mile back from the river and occupied nearly a mile of the river 
front. Of its 1,110 houses, twenty were stone, 250 brick and 800 
wood. There were four places of public worship and the Cincinnati 
Lancaster Seminary was housed in a commodious building that 
would accommodate 900 students. 

There was a regular influx of immigrants to Cincinnati for 
some years after the close of the War of 1812, and for a period of 
five years the increase in population was more than 700 annually. 
A visitor has left us the following flattering description of conditions 
in 1817: "Cincinnati * * * a most thriving place, backed as it is 
already by a great population and a most fruitful country, bids 
fair to be one of the first cities of the west. We are told and we 
cannot doubt the fact, that the chief of what we see is the work of 
four years. The hundreds of commodious, well finished brick 
houses, the spacious and busy markets, the substantial public build- 


ings, the thousands of prosperous, well dressed individuals with in- 
dustrious habits, the numerous wagons and drays, the gay carriages 
and elegant females, * * * the shoals of craft on the river, the busy 
stir prevailing everywhere, house building, boat building, paving 
and leveling streets, the numbers of country people, constantly 
coming and going, with the spacious taverns, crowded with travelers 
from a distance."' Another said that the "general appearance is 
clean and handsome; indeed elegant and astonishing when we re- 
flect that less than forty years ago it was the resort of Indians and 
the whole surrounding country a wilderness full of wild beasts and 

Between 1815 and 1820 immigration to the Miami valley was 
rapid, and it was stated that the growth of population had been so 
rapid that many good towns and villages had arisen on different 
streams, but a few miles distant from each other, between which 
there was hardly any road or communication. This statement was 
made by Palmer in his Journal of Travels in the United States, 
and the same author, in describing the road leading from Cincinnati 
to Lebanon, said : "We pass through a thickly, but lately settled 
country, frame and log houses, and cabins, and fine farms of corn, 
wheat, rye and oats ; * * * the smoke of the fire made in burning 
trees and underwood rising around us, and large fields of naked 
trunks and branches of the girdled trees meet the eye at every turn 
of the road." 

The west was too new and too sparsely settled to be interested 
when the rage for turnpikes spread over the east in the latter part 
of the first decade of the nineteenth century, but when the great 
rush of population into Ohio began after the close of the War of 
1812, and an increasing agricultural product had to be marketed, 
there was an agitation for better roads, and several turnpikes com- 
panies were chartered to build roads connecting Cincinnati with 
towns in the interior of the state. It was not uncommon, in the 
advertisements of new town sites, to see presented as one of the 
advantages of the location that the new town was on proposed 
turnpike road. Dr. Drake remarked that the policy of constructing 
from Cincinnati toward the sources of the Miamis a great road 
which should at all times be equally passable, had been for some 
time in agitation. He further said : "The benefits which an execu- 
tion of this plan would confer, cannot be fully estimated, except 
by those who have traveled through the Miami country in the 
winter season and have studied the connections in business between 
that district and Cincinnati. The salt, the iron, the castings, the 
glass, the cotton and foreign merchandise of eight counties would 
be transported on this road." But those who hoped for immediate 
improvement in road construction in the west were doomed to 
disappointment, as it was not until early in the thirties that turn- 
pike construction was seriously undertaken in Ohio. 

This lack of good roads, combined with the long journey to 
New Orleans, made the cost of transporting goods to market so 
high as practically to prevent shipment from a large part of the 
interior, thus precluding the development of a surplus that would 
otherwise have swelled the volume of trade. It has been estimated 


that in the early part of the last century the average cost of trans- 
portation by land was $10 per ton per hundred miles, and that grain 
and flour could not stand the cost of transportation more than 150 
miles at such rate. This estimate was made by McMaster, in his 
History of the People of the United States, but taking into con- 
sideration the cost of river transportation and the cost of market- 
ing, it is doubtful if such articles in the Miami valley could have 
been hauled profitably more than fifty miles to the place of export. 
A record of what was actually charged for transportation has been 
preserved in some instances. Referring to the Centinel of the 
Northwest Territory, issue of April 4, 1795, it appears that goods 
for the army were being shipped from Fort Washington to Fort 
Hamilton by water in private boats, and that the rate was $1.10 
per barrel for flour, $1.30 per barrel for whiskey, and fifty cents per 
hundredweight for corn. And Curwen's History of Dayton is au- 
thority for the statement that in 1799 the cost of transportation 
from Cincinnati to Dayton was $2.50 per hundredweight. In 1805 
a four-horse stage coach furnished weekly service between Cincin- 
nati and Yellow Springs, and passengers were charged $5 per single 
trip. Way passengers paid at the rate of six cents per mile. The 
line passed through Hamilton, Franklin and Dayton, and two days 
were required to make the trip. 

As the result of these difficulties in the matter of transporta- 
tion, according to Burnet's Notes, it was not uncommon for corn 
and oats to sell as low as 10 and 12 cents per bushel, beef at $1.50 
per hundredweight, and pork at $1 to $2 per hundredweight. Ash, 
in his Travels in the United States, tells of a farmer — a Mr. Digby 
— well situated with an improved farm about forty miles north- 
east of Cincinnati, who stated that the price of produce was so low 
and the price of labor so high that very little profit attended the 
most laborious exercise of industry. Indian corn carried so mean 
a value that he never offered to sell it, and wheat made into flour 
sold for $3 per barrel. This farmer could not wait for roads to be 
built, and in consequence he was about to abandon a system so 
little advantageous and take to grazing cattle, breeding hogs, and 
raising horses for distant market where money was to be obtained. 
In fact, he had already attempted one such venture, having sent his 
son with a cargo of 200 live hogs to New Orleans, and in the spring 
he proposed taking a drove of cattle and horses over the mountains 
to Philadelphia and Baltimore. 

Mr. Ash's contemporaries speak most disparagingly of his verac- 
ity, and his writings are chiefly noted for the all too evident in- 
tent to misrepresent and ridicule the pepole of the United States. 
But his statements in regard to economic conditions are in accord 
with more authoritative writers, and Farmer Digby may be not 
entirely a myth. Certain it is that the prairies of the upper Miami 
country and the Scioto valley furnished pasture for droves of cattle 
that were driyen over the mountains to Philadelphia or Baltimore, 
and the mast of the woods furnished free food for hogs that were 
in some instances driven northward to Detroit. In 1817 Morris 
Birkbeck met a drov« of very fat oxen on their way from the banks 
of the Miami to Philadelphia, and as late as 1819, according to Mc- 


Bride's Pioneer Biography, Jeremiah Butterfield, of Butler county, 
drove a large number of hogs through the woods to Detroit to mar- 

Of course, it was impracticable to feed all the surplus product 
of the farm to live stock and send it to market on its own legs, and 
so the farmers, in common with other frontier communities of the 
time, solved the problem of reducing bulk and weight for purposes 
of shipment by turning their grain into whiskey and their fruit into 
brandy. Beers' History of Montgomery County states that during 
this early period a large number of the well-to-do farmers each had 
his own small still and thus turned his surplus fruit and sometimes 
grain into a marketable product. Larger distilleries began to be 
erected about the time that water-power gristmills came into use, 
and whiskey became an important article of export. 

Lebanon seems to have been a particularly attractive town for 
settlers and travelers alike. Birkbeck, who visited it in 1817, de- 
scribes it as one of those wonders which are the natural growth of 
the back woods. In fourteen years it had grown from two or three 
cabins of half savage hunters to be the residence of a thousand per- 
sons, with habits and looks in no way different from their brethren 
from the east. At this time Lebanon contained a courthouse, a 
jail, two churches, a school, a postoffice, a printing office, a public 
library, and a bank with a capital of $250,000. Franklin, with 
fifty-five families, and Waynesville, were the other towns of im- 
portance in Warren county. Dayton claimed 130 dwellings ana 
contained a courthouse, two churches and an academy, a library, 
a postoffice, a printing office, and several grist and sawmills were 
located near the town. Hamilton had become a place of seventy- 
five buildings and the other chief towns of Butler county were 
Rossville, Oxford and Middletown. Besides Cincinnati, the chief 
towns in Hamilton county were: Columbia, Newtown, Reading, 
Montgomery, Springfield, Colerain, Harrison, Crosby, and Cleves. 

The section of country bordering on the Ohio river in the 
vicinity of Cincinnati and extending back about one hundred miles 
was described by Fearson, in his Sketches of America, as being an 
excellent body of land, well settled, though but small improvements 
had been made, except in a few places near the towns. The price of 
land varied much according to situation. Farms which were called 
improved could be bought at from $8 to $30 per acre. The improve- 
ments, however, often consisted of rough log buildings and from 
twelve to twenty acres under partial cultivation. A better class of 
farms had from twenty to fifty acres under cultivation. Grazing 
was still the chief occupation on the prairies near the headwaters 
of the Miamis. 

There was a noticeable evolution in social and intellectual con- 
ditions along with this economic advance. Fast disappearing were 
the manners that had been acquired and the ignorance that had 
been induced while settlers were living in forts and getting their 
bread and meat at the peril of their lives, and even later when al- 
most all of the people were battling with the wilderness. Schools 
and even libraries were established, and a limited education and 
some culture took the place of the ignorance and rude life of the 


frontier, as cultivated farms took the place of forests and towns 
came into existence. In the interior, of course, there continued to 
be found the various types of settlers characteristic of the frontier. 
Travelers have generally divided them into three classes: First, 
the squatter, or man v^ho "sets himself down" upon land which 
is not his own, and for which he pays nothing; cultivates to a_ suffi- 
cient extent to supply himself and family with the necessaries of 
life; remains until he is dissatisfied with his choice, had realized 
a sufficiency to become a land-owner, or is expelled by the real 
proprietor. Second, the small farmer who had recently immigrated, 
had barely sufficient to pay the first installment for his 80 or 160 
acres of $2 land; cultivates, or what he calls improves, ten to 
thirty acres ; raises a sufficient "feed" for his family ; has the females 
of it employed in making or patching the wretched clothing of the 
whole domestic circle; is in a condition which, if compelled by 
legislative acts, or by external force to endure, would be con- 
sidered truly wretched; but from being his own master, having 
made his own choice, from the having "no one to make him afraid," 
joined with the consciousness that, though slowly, he is regularly 
advancing towards wealth ; the breath of complaint is seldom heard 
to escape from his lips. Third, the wealthy or "strong-handed" 
farmer, who owns from five to twelve hundred acres, has one-fourth 
to one-third under cultivation, of a kind much superior to the for- 
mer ; raises live stock for the home and Atlantic city markets ; sends 
beef, pork, cheese, lard, and butter to New Orleans; is perhaps a 
legislator, at any rate a squire (magistrate) ; is always a man of 
plain businesslike sense, though not in possession, nor desirous of 
a very cultivated intellect ; understands his own interest, and that of 
his country; lives in sufficient affluence, and is possessed of com- 
fort; but, in conclusion, and a most important conclusion it is, the 
majority of this class of men were, ten or fifteen years ago, in- 
habitants of the eastern states, and not worth, upon their arrival 
in Ohio, $20. 

The platting of new towns was another characteristic of west- 
ern development, especially between the years 1814 and 1820. In 
the territory immediately contiguous to Cincinnati more than thirty 
towns were laid out within that time. Some have long since been 
forgotten, while others still exist as prosperous towns or villages. 
Among the towns established within that period that are still thriv- 
ing communities is Carthage. An enterprising proprietor of a 
tract of land that was situated in a region already somewhat settled 
and favorably located on a navigable stream, near a mill site, or on 
an established highway, would see a chance for increasing his wealth 
by the rise in value of real estate. He would employ a surveyor 
and have a portion of his land laid out in town lots, then advertise 
in a Cincinnati newspaper, setting forth the advantages of the pro- 
posed town and announcing that on a certain day lots would be sold 
at auction on the premises, usually on a credit of six months or a 

Some of these land owners dreamed of towns on a magnificent 
scale that were never realized ; but while many of the speculations 
failed, many prospered and are today the centers of thriving com- 


munities. Birkbeck has given a most interesting account of the rise 
and development of these frontier towns : "A storekeeper builds a 
little framed store, and sends for a few cases of goods ; and then a 
tavern starts up, which becomes the residence of a doctor and a 
lawyer, and the boarding house of the storekeeper, as well as the 
resort of the weary traveler; soon follow a blacksmith and other 
handicraftsmen in useful succession ; a schoolmaster, who is also 
the minister of religion, becomes an important accession to this ris- 
ing community. Thus the town proceeds, if it proceeds at all, with 
accumulating force, until it becomes the metropolis of the neighbor- 
hood. * * * Thus trade begins and thrives, as population grows 
around these lucky spots; imports and exports maintaining their 
just proportion. * * * The town being fairly established, a cluster 
of inhabitants, small as it may be, acts as a stimulus on the cultiva- 
tion of the neighborhood ; redundancy of supply is the consequence, 
and this demands a vent. Water mills, or in defect of water power, 
steam mills, rise on the nearest navigable stream, and thus an ef- 
fectual and constant market is secured for the increasing surplus 
of produce. Such are the elements of that accumulating mass of 
commerce ; in exports, and consequent imports, which will render 
the Mississippi the greatest thoroughfare in the world." 

Mr. Birkbeck wrote in a prophetic vein and the fulfillment of 
his prophecy in regard to transportation on the Mississippi and on 
the Ohio river as well is an interesting story. But the navigation 
of the great Miami deserves mention in this connection. Beers' 
History of Montgomery County says the first flatboat that navi- 
gated the Great Miami was built by David Loury at Dayton, in 
1800, and was sent to New Orleans loaded with grain, pelts, and 
500 venison ham_s. From that time till the completion of the canal 
between Cincinnati and Dayton, in 1829, flatboats continued to 
navigate the Great Miami river. The stream was navigable during 
the greater part of the year, but boats were usually built and 
launched with the spring floods and loaded with flour, bacon, 
whiskey and other staple products, bound for New Orleans. Mc- 
Bride, in his Pioneer Biography, says it was not uncommon for 
one of the more prosperous farmers on the Ohio or Great Miami to 
load a flatboat with his own produce. These boats frequently 
carried as much as 300 or 400 barrels and were five to six days in 
passing from Dayton to the Ohio river. And Dana, in his 
Geographical Sketches of the Western Country, says that in April, 
1818, 1,700 barrels of flour were shipped from Dayton to New 

That the navigation of the Great Miami was not all that could 
be desired appears from the narrative of Thomas Morrison, left by 
him in the form of unpublished manuscript. He left Dayton with a 
boat load of produce, Nov. 17, 1822, and on the evening of the second 
day his boat struck a rock and upset near Franklin, but he was 
fortunate in saving the cargo. The boat was repaired, but he did 
not feel safe in continuing down the river with the full cargo. Two 
wagon loads were hauled to Cincinnati at a cost of $1 per hun- 
dredweight, put on another flatboat and floated to the mouth of the 
Great Miami, while the balance was floated to the Ohio. The boat 


from Cincinnati was then lashed to the one from Dayton and they 
proceeded down the Ohio. In 1825 Mr. Morrison made another trip 
to the south with a cargo of flour ; but this time he hauled his flour 
from Dayton to Cincinnati, floated his boat empty down the Great 
Miami to its mouth, ran her up to Cincinnati and loaded there. 

From the foregoing it will be apparent to the reader that dur- 
ing the earlier period of development in the Miami valley disin- 
tegrating conditions existed to a considerable extent. The move- 
ment of live stock over the mountains or to Detroit, and the trans- 
portation of produce down the Great Miami cannot be regarded 
otherwise. But from the beginning Cincinnati was the natural 
metropolis of this whole region of country. These disintegrating 
tendencies were gradually overcome as the city grew and roads 
were improved, and by 1829 the completion of the Miami canal 
definitely gave Cincinnati control of the entire trade of the Miami 

A matter which is entirely germane to the subject of this chap- 
ter — the settlement of the Miami valley — is the Great Kentucky 
revival, and its subsequent camp-meetings, which lasted for a 
period of over fifty years. Owing to the rapidity of the increase 
in population and the advent of foreigners with their variant 
sectaries, it is difficult to measure the depth of the influence of the 
enthusiasm resultant from that religious upheaval, but certain it 
is that the effort of the reformers made a marked impression upon 
the people of the valley. The settlements were almost wholly com- 
munities of farmers. Books and newspapers were but sparingly 
supplied to them, and religion was their chief intellectual food. 
Without the advantages enjoyed by their descendants, scattered, 
though naturally gregarious, a religious revival naturally held out 
its allurements to all alike. 

The early settlers, for the most part, were Christians by pro- 
fession, and different denominations were early in the field, employ- 
ing their zeal in making proselytes and propagating their respective 
tenets. The great majority ranked among the Presbyterians, Bap- 
tists, and Methodists. The first church organized in Ohio was the 
Baptist church at Columbia, near Cincinnati, in 1790, and the build- 
ing, erected in 1793, stood until 1835. In 1797, besides the Presby- 
terian church at Cincinnati, there were preaching points at (a short 
distance south of Franklin), Turtle creek (now Union, or Shaker 
village, west of Lebanon), Bethany (two miles east of Lebanon), 
and Big Prairie (at the mouth of Dick's creek in Butler county, 
afterward called Orangedale). Of these country congregations 
the largest and most influential was Turtle Creek. 

Acknowledging one another as of the same parent stock, the 
various sects "stood entirely separate as to any communion or 
fellowship, and treated each other with the highest marks of 
hostility ; wounding, captivating and bickering another, until their 
attention was called off by the appearance of deism." As early as 
1796 a religious apathy appears to have pervaded the pulpit. One 
writes, "the dead state of religion is truly discouraging here, as 
well as elsewhere" ; another says, "I have this winter past preached 
with difficulty, my heart but little enjoyed," and still another, "I 


see but little prospect of encouragement." But however dark the 
picture may be painted, the despondent were soon awakened to 
what they deemed a season of refreshment. 

In the year 1800, on the Caspar, in Logan county, Kentucky, 
there began a religious revival which was the precursor of the most 
wonderful upheaval ever experienced in Christian work. The ex- 
citement commenced under the labors of one John Rankin, and 
almost immediately James McCready, also a Presbyterian clergy- 
man, was seized with the same spirit. McCready has been described 
as a homely man, with sandy hair and rugged features, and was so 
terrific in holding forth the terrors of hell that he was called a son 
of thunder. He pictured "the furnace of hell with its red-hot coals 
of Cod's wrath as large as mountains" ; he would open to the sinner's 
view "the burning lake of hell, to see its fiery billows rolling, and to 
hear the yells and groans of the damned ghosts roaring under the 
burning wrath of an angry Cod." Under his preaching the people 
would fall down with a loud cry and lie powerless, or else groan- 
ing, praying, or crying to Cod for mercy. The news of the excite- 
ment spread not only over Kentucky, but also into Ohio and 
Tennessee, and people rushed to the Caspar to witness the scenes, 
and returned to their homes carrying a measure of the enthusiasm 
with them. 

Out of the Kentucky revival there originated three sects, or 
religious denominations entirely new to the western country. The 
one which exerted the most power in the Miami valley is generally 
called New Lights, and sometimes Schismatics. The sect repudiates 
both these names, and styles itself The Christian church, which 
name it assumed in 1804. In 1802, Richard McNemar took charge 
of the Turtle Creek church (near Lebanon, Ohio), where his labors 
met with abundant success. At the meeting of the Presbytery in 
Cincinnati, Oct. 6, 1802, an elder entered a verbal complaint against 
him, as a propagator of false doctrine. The accused insisted the 
question was out of order, for charges must be made in writing. 
Nevertheless the Presbytery proceeded to examine him "on the 
fundamental doctrines of the sacred scriptures," which were election, 
human depravity, the atonement, etc. The finding was that Mc- 
Nemar held these doctrines in a sense different from that in which 
Calvinists generally believe them, and that his sentiments were 
"hostile to the interests of all true religion." Notwithstanding this 
condemnation he was appointed one-half his time at Turtle Creek, 
until the next stated session; two Sabbaths at Orangeville, two 
at Clear Creek, two at Beulah, one at the forks at Mad river, and the 
rest at discretion. 

At the next session at Springfield (now known as Springdale, 
some eleven miles north of Cincinnati, in April, 1803, a petition 
from a number of persons, in the congregations of Beulah, Turtle 
Creek, Clear Creek, Bethany, Hopewell, Dick's Creek, and Cincin- 
nati, was presented, praying for a re-examination of McNemar, and 
that Rev. John Thompson undergo a like examination. The Pres- 
bytery refused to acquiesce. A petition, signed by sixty persons of 
the Turtle Creek congregation, asked for the whole of McNemar's 
time, which was granted. The matter was brought before the 


Synod, held at Lexington, Ky., in September, 1803, with the result 
that McNemar and others were suspended and their parishes were 
declared as being without ministers. 

Up to the time ot these charges of heresy being made against 
him MciXemar has been described to have been a mild and unassum- 
ing man. But his trials appear to have awakened all the resources 
ot his strong nature. With enthusiasm he began his work at Turtle 
CreeK, ana in summer his congregations were so large that the meet- 
ings were held in the grove near the church. Strange physical 
phenomena ot the revival attended his ministrations in Warren 
county. At Turtle Creek almost all the adult persons in a large 
congregation would fall to the ground in a short time and lie un- 
conscious, with hardly a sign of breathing or beating of the pulse. 

At the same meeting of the Presbyterian Synod at Lexington, 
when Mcl\emar was suspended, the dissolution of the Springfield 
Presbytery was ordered, and this launched a new denomination in 
the west. The preachers carried their churches with them. Every 
Presbyterian church in southwestern Ohio was swept into this new 
organization, with one or two exceptions, and even the church at 
Cincinnati was fainy tainted with the new doctrines and methods. 
1 he Turtle Creek church, with uplifted hands, was constituted a 
schismatic church. 1 he intiuence of Richard McNemar was ir- 
res.scibie. beiore the close of the year 1804, Turtle Creek, Eagle 
Cree:;, bpringneltl (^Spnngclale), Orangedale, Clear Creek, Beaver 
Creek, and Saltm had joined the new movement. A demand for 
more preaciiers was made. Camp meetings were popular and were 
used to extend the general influence. The names of "brother" and 
"sister" were applied to church members, and the custom of giving 
the right hand of fellowship was introduced. The spirit of the 
Kentucky revival, especially in camp meetings was kept aflame. 
"Praying, shouting, jerking, barking, or rolling; dreaming, 
prophesying, and looking as through a glass, at the infinite lories 
of Mount Zion, just about to break open upon the world." A his- 
tory of the Kentucky Revival says: "They practiced a mode of 
prayer, which was as singular as the situation in which they stood, 
and the faith by which they were actuated. According- to their 
proper name of distinction, they stood separate and divided, each 
one for one ; and in this capacity they offered up each their separate 
cries to God, in one united harmony of sound ; by which the doubtful 
footsteps of those who were in search of the meeting, might be 
directed, sometimes to the distance of miles." 

Troubles, however, rapidly accumulated on the infant sect. 
Notwithstanding the fact that it started with established churches 
and possessed with unbounded enthusiasm, yet the leaders were 
not equal to the occasion. The early preachers inveighed against 
a hireling ministry, which forced into the ranks many whose minds 
were diverted to the question of sufficient support; there was a 
want of organization and a wise administration of government. 
The power of other churches forced them into intellectual lines, 
which they were not slow, in the later years, to take advantage of. 
But the Miami valley owes much to the Christian church, and the 
showing of that church, contrasted with other sects, will compare 


favorably. A Presbyterian may not regard the coloring as of the. 
brightest hue, for, in all probability, had it not been for the Ken- 
tucky Revival, Presbyteriansm in Southwestern Ohio would be 
relatively as strong as it is today in Western Pennsylvania. 

In March, 1805, there arrived at Lebanon the forerunners of 
another religious movement, John Meacham and his associates, 
who came to found a community of the Shaking Quakers, started 
in England about sixty years before, in the delusions of a woman, 
Ann Lee, who claimed to be a reincarnation of Christ. She was put 
in a madhouse in the old country, but came to America and found 
favor. The sect had much success at Lebanon, and founded the 
Shaker town at Union village. In 1810 feeling against this sect 
became very strong and in August of that year occurred a most 
extraordinary and unwarranted attack upon the resident believers 
in that peculiar creed. The believers were told in effect that they 
must renounce their faith and practice — their manner of living, 
preaching, and mode of worship, or, as an alternative, leave the 
country. Refusal to comply with the demands meant a resort of 
violence, they were told. The threat was not carried out, however, 
and the Shakers continued to worship according to the dictates of 
their conscience ; but they gradually grew fewer in numbers. 

If any excuse is desired for the above mentioned proceeding it 
must be that it was in accord with the spirit of that early day. Re- 
ligious belief and practices frequently developed into fanaticism 
and the feeling of enmity between the followers of different creeds 
became in some instances extremely bitter. But in the Miami val- 
ley, as elsewhere, the ecclesiastical development kept pace with the 
development of the country and exercised a marked influence on 
the character of its population. Dr. Drake, in writing of the popu- 
lation of the valley in 1815, says that Cincinnati then had about one 
thousand houses, a stone courthouse with dome, Presbyterian, 
Methodist, Baptist, and Friends' meeting-houses, two banks, two 
newspapers, a library, a two-story building in process of erection 
for the accommodation of the newly founded Lancastrian Seminary, 
and a number of manufacturing establishments, including one stone 
mill. Hamilton had seventy houses, chiefly log, a postoffice and 
printing office, but no public buildings save a stone jail. Lebanon 
was a considerable village with houses of brick and wood, a court- 
house and a schoolhouse, Baptist and Methodist churches, a stone 
jail, a printing office, a library, a bank, and several manufactories. 
Franklin had forty-five families, grist and sawmills and a post- 
office. Dayton had one hundred dwellings, principally wood, a 
courthouse, a Methodist meeting-house, a brick academy, a library 
of 250 books, a bank, a postoffice and a printing office. Oxford was 
described as a sparsely populated village, located on the frontier of 
the state, that had gained notoriety from having been fixed on as the 
seat of a university. 

The first churches were planted to the northward of the Ohio 
a full quarter century before Dr. Drake penned his description of 
the Miami country. A little more than a year after the coming 
of the first settlers steps were taken to effect a religious organiza- 
tion. The initiative was taken by the Baptists who, at Columbia, 


on Jan. 20, 1790, organized the first Protestant church in the north- 
west territory. The officiating clergyman was Rev. Stephen Gano, 
and the number of charter members was nine, though this was short- 
ly added to. The following May, Elder John Smith, later a mem- 
ber of the Constitutional Convention, and United States Senator 
from Ohio, took charge of the congregation. This church grew 
rapidly, but after Wayne's Treaty, in 1795, many of its members 
moved into the interior, and in 1797 was recorded the founding of 
Miami Island, Carpenter's Run and Clear Creek churches. 

In December, 1790, a Presbyterian congregation was organized 
at Cincinnati by the Rev. David Rice, of Danville, Ky. A few 
months later James Kemper, a licentiate, was sent to supply this 
congregation and to establish preaching stations at Columbia, North 
Bend, and Round Bottom. He arrived at his field of labor a few 
days before St. Clair's defeat, and proved a tower of strength to 
the disheartened settlement in those troublous days. 

Although the Baptists have the honor of organizing the first 
congregation, to the Presbyterians belong the credit of erecting the 
first house of worship in the Miami country, and this by the Cin- 
cinnati church. In January, 1792, subscriptions were made by 116 
persons, totaling $289 plus 3 pounds and six pence in English 
money, 170 days' work, 71 days' work with team, 23 pounds of nails, 
450 feet of boards, and 65 boat planks. The church erected at that 
time is described as a good frame house, 30x40 feet, but "neither 
lathed, plastered, nor ceiled." The floor was of boat plank laid 
loosely upon the joists. The seats were of the same material, sup- 
ported by blocks of wood. There was a breastwork of unplaned 
cherry boards called a pulpit, behind which the clergyman stood on 
a piece of boat plank resting on a block of wood. This church, some- 
what improved a few years later, served the congregation until 1812, 
when a more commodious edifice was erected. 

While there may have been some prior sporadic preaching, it 
was not until 1798 that a definite effort was made to establish 
Methodism in the Miami valley. In that year. Rev. John Kobler, 
acting under appointment of Bishop Asbury, crossed the Ohio at 
Columbia and made his way to the cabin of Francis McCormick, 
near Milford. Here he organized a class of twenty-one members. 
A few days later, accompanied by McCormick, he set out on a 
tour of the settlements between the Miamis, visiting among other 
points, Dayton, Franklin, Hamilton, and Cincinnati. The few 
score of Methodists whom he found he organized into eight or ten 
classes which he sought to visit every two weeks. After such a 
ministry of several months, he retired from the circuit, reporting 
ninety-nine members. It was not, however, until five years after 
the close of his ministry in the Miami valley that Methodism gained 
a foothold in Cincinnati, as on his visit to the place in 1798 he could 
find no one interested in his ministry, and so did not include it in 
his list of appointments. It was in 1804 that John Collins, a local 
preacher residing in Clermont county, while on a business trip to 
Cincinnati, learned of the presence there of a number of Methodists. 
These he at once gathered together, and after preaching to them 
organized them into a class, and a little later secured their inclusion 


in the appointments of the Miami circuit. However, there was no 
regular place of preaching until about 1807, when a stone meeting- 
house was erected. By 1812 this church had so grown that it had 
209 names upon the roll of its members. 

It will give some idea of the growth in population, as well as 
interest in religious work to note the establishment of church or- 
ganizations in the Miami valley, prior to 1816. The years given are 
the time of establishment: In 1790, at Columbia, a Baptist, and 
at Cincinnati a Presbyterian; 1795, Presbyterian at Springfield; 
1796, Presbyterian at Pleasant Ridge; 1797, Baptist churches at 
Clear Creek, Miami Island, and Carpenter's Run; 1798, Methodist 
at Dayton, United Presbyterian at Sycamore, and Baptist at Turtle 
Creek; 1799, Presbyterian at Beulah and also the first church of 
that denomination at Dayton ; 1800, Baptist at Trenton and United 
Presbyterian at Clear Creek ; 1802, Presbyterian at Hamilton and 
United Presbyterian at Monroe ; 1803, Evangelical Lutheran and 
also German Lutheran at St. John's, and a Friends' church at 
Waynesville; 1804, Methodist at Duck Creek, Baptist at Muddy 
Creek ; 1805, Presbyterian at Hamilton, Methodist at Lebanon, 
Friends at Middleburg, Congregational at Paddy's Run, German 
Reformed at Springboro, Shaker at Shaker village; 1807, Friends 
at Goshen, Baptist at Troy, and Friends at West Milton ; 1808, 
United Presbyterian at Hopewell, and Presbyterian at Unity ; 
1809, German Reformed and Lutheran, both at Germantown ; 1810, 
Presbyterian at Collinsville, Baptist at Indian Creek, Methodist at 
Rossburg, and Baptist at Bethel; 1811, United Brethren at Poast- 
town, Presbyterian at Harrison, Baptist at Todd's Fork, Methodist 
at McKendree Chapel, and Baptist at Bethel, in Hamilton county; 
1813, Presbyterian at New Jersey, Baptist at Cincinnati, and 
Methodist at Zane; 1814, Presbyterian at Bethel in Warren county. 
Friends at Cincinnati, Lutheran at Cincinnati, and Baptist at Little 
Creek; 1815, Lutheran at Ellerton, United Presbyterian at Hamil- 
ton, Presbyterian at Bethel in Butler county, and Lutheran at 
Samuels. The churches herein named are still in existence and 
are therefore all more than one hundred years old. It is note- 
worthy that among them there is found neither a Catholic nor 
Episcopal church nor a Jewish synagogue. 

Resuming the story of the Shakers, it may be stated that on a 
beautiful elevation near the old church at Shaker village they 
erected their community buildings, some of which are still standing, 
more than a hundred years old. There, in 1810, they erected their 
chapel, which is a fine example of pioneer architecture, and it is 
perhaps the oldest building devoted to religious services now stand- 
ing in the Miami valley. Here the Shakers led their life, introducing 
new methods of agriculture, developing new breeds of stock, pro- 
viding garden seeds and remedial agents to the general public, and 
engaging in certain forms of manufacturing. For many years the 
community flourished until it numbered several hundred people. 
North and south villages were erected on the Turtle Creek prop- 
erty, while additional communities were established on Whitewater 
and near Dayton. In time, however, the community declined, and 
as numbers decreased they centralized at Union village. Finally, 


in 1912, recognizing that they must soon become extinct, they dis- 
posed of their buildings and farm lands amounting to about six 
thousand acres to the United Brethren church, reserving a life in- 
terest in one of the buildings and its grounds. Here, enjoying the 
comforts of life, the remnant of this interesting community calmly 
await the ultimate call. 

As early as 1802 J. W. Brown, of Cincinnati, preached at vari- 
ous points in the region of Paddy's Run, Butler county. The Chris- 
tians of the community were from England, Wales, Scotland, Ire- 
land, and New England; they were of various denominations, but 
in order to properly maintain the ordinances of the church decided 
to drop personal predilections and organize on the broad basis of 
Christian love. A com.mittee was appointed to draft a constitution 
and rules of discipline. The report of the committee was, after due 
deliberation, adopted, and the church was formally organized on 
September 3, 1803, at the home of John Templeton, and given the 
name of The Congregational Church of Whitewater, but it has been 
commonly known as the Paddy's Run church. The first members 
were Benjamin McCarty, Asa Mitchell, Joab Comstock, Andrew 
Scott, Margaret Bebb, Ezekiel Hughes, William and Ann Gwilyne, 
David and Mary Francis. In 1804 a committee of their own mem- 
bers set apart the aforementioned John W. Brown to the office and 
work of the ministry. The relation thus established continued until 
1811, when Mr. Brown was sent on a mission to the eastern states by 
Miami university. The church received large accessions to its 
membership, among whom were many Welsh. These soon became 
numerous and, in 1817, a minister was secured, Rev. Rees Lloyd, 
who could hold services in both English and Welsh, which custom 
was continued for many years. 

The members of this congregation early evinced an interest in 
education, and in 1807 erected a schoolhouse and started a sub- 
scription school. In 1821 the co-pastor. Rev. Thomas Thomas of 
the congregation, opened a high school with a boarding department. 
This school soon acquired considerable distinction. In 1821 a Union 
Library association was formed and chartered, and it is still flour- 
ishing. In 1823-25, a brick meeting house, 43x30 feet, was erected. 
In 1856 a new church was built and the old one was given over 
to community purpose. This congregation continues to flourish, and 
recently has, at very considerable expense, remodeled its building 
in order to better adapt it to its present needs. 

It is but natural that a congregation with such a spirit should 
send forth a due compliment of its sons and daughters to achieve 
distinction in the world's work. Among them have been Gov. 
William Bebb, Murat Halstead. Dr. Griffin Shaw, Alfred Thomas, 
legal adviser in the United States Treasury department ; Rev. 
Thomas E. Thomas, at one time a professor in Lane theological 
seminary; Rev. Mart Williams, of the China mission; Prof. S. W. 
Williams, of Miami university, and many others. 

Among the pioneers who came into the Miami valley in the 
early years of the last century were many Germans from Pennsyl- 
vania, Maryland, and the valley of Virginia. Judging by churches 
founded these settled almost wholly within the valley of the Great 


Miami, and for the most part within the upper half of the west 
slope of the valley. One important center was about Germantown, 
German township, Montgomery county. Here they organized a 
United Brethren church, in 1806, and Evangelical Lutheran and 
Reformed congregations in 1809. These latter two, as they fre- 
quently did throughout the valley, united in erecting a house of 
worship and used it alternately. As the congregation grew in 
strength each built its own house of worship, and today both are 
flourishing congregations with well appointed buildings. Many 
of the German churches endeavored to continue the exclusive use 
of the German language in their church services. They found in 
time that they could not do this and retain their young people. Thus 
they were led to use the English in part or in whole in their ser- 

After 1800 a number of families settled in the vicinity of Frank- 
lin. On August 14, 1813, a number of them met at the home of Will- 
iam P. Barkalow and resolved to form themselves into a congrega- 
tion, to apply to Presbytery for one-half of the ministerial services 
of Rev. Francis Montfort, and to raise him $150 in half yearly pay- 
ments. The following year ruling elders were chosen and Mr. 
Montfort was ordained as their pastor. In 1815 steps were taken 
to build a frame church. This was used until 1867, when it gave 
place to a handsome brick structure that cost $16,365 and is well 
adapted to religious services, Bible school work and the social 
work of the community. This congregation today numbers more 
than two hundred members who look well to the comfort and sup- 
port of their pastor and are deeply interested in all missionary 

Within half a mile of this church stands the Tapscott Baptist 
church, founded in 1814 by people of the same general sto k but 
with different religious ideals. A little later a brick meeting-house, 
which still stands, was erected and for a time the church prospered. 
But in 1835 dissension arose in the Baptist churches as to the pro- 
priety of undertaking missionary work, establishing Bible schools 
and joining in evangelistic effort. In 1836 a majority of this con- 
gregation decided in opposition to those agencies. Those favoring 
withdrew and formed the Franklin Baptist church. Today the Tap- 
scott church numbers a very few members, holds an occasional 
service, and is without any vital hold on the community life. Of 
similar history is the Clear Creek Baptist, founded in 1797, but whicR 
stands today practically unused and with trees growing about its 

It would be interesting to study the lives of the men who 
pioneered in the religious and other developments of the Minmi 
valley. And in this connection it will be not out of place to men- 
tion a few of the early preachers : 

Stephen Gard, 1776-1839, was born in Fs=^ex county. New Jer- 
sey, and educated in a classical academy near his home. He arrived 
at Columbia, in 1798, and located at Trenton, where, in 1801. he 
was married to Rachel Pierce. He founded Bantist churches at 
Trenton, Middletown, Carlisle, Dayton and Hamilton. 

James Kemper, 1755-1784, was born at Warrentown, Fauquier 


county, Virginia. Though reared in the Episcopal church he was 
led to espouse the Presbyterian faith. In 1735, at the solicitation 
of Rev. David Rice, he moved to Kentucky to take a position as 
teacher in the Transylvania seminary. In 1791 he was licensed and 
appointed to supply in the churches of the Miami. The same year 
he came to Cincinnati where, after a year, he was ordained and 
installed pastor of the Presbyterian church at that place. Later he 
ministered to the Turtle Creek Presbyterian church, but his work 
here was cut short on account of the disapproval by the plain dress- 
ing pioneers of his wife's elaborate headdress. Later he founded 
the Second Presbyterian church of Cincinnati. He was a man of 
ambitious plans and promoted the Kentucky academy, the Walnut 
Hills academy, the Cincinnati college, and Lane theological sem- 

James Hughes was born of English parentage in York county, 
Pennsylvania. About 1780 he moved with his parents to Wash- 
ington county, where he received his classical and theological edu- 
cation, in part at least, under the tuition of Rev. John McMillan in 
the log college which he erected near his house, and which still 
stands on the campus of old Jefferson college. He was licensed in 
1788, and two years later was ordained and installed as pastor of 
the Short Creek and Lower Buffalo churches. He was probably 
the first Presbyterian clergyman ordained west of the Alleghenies 
In these fields he labored until 1814. In 1815 he settled at tJrbana, 
where he founded the Presbyterian church, to which he ministered 
until 1818, when he was elected principal of the grammar school of 
Miami university. On moving to Oxford he organized the Pres- 
byterian church at that place. Here he died in 1821. 

Robert H. Bishop (1777-1855) was born near Edinburgh, Scot- 
land, graduating in the university at that place in 1798, and from 
the theological seminary at Selkirk in 1802. In that year he, with 
four others, was induced to migrate to America to minister to the 
Associate Presbyterian churches there. With another of these, he 
was sent to the Ohio valley to labor. After ministering for a time 
to churches in Southern Ohio, he located at Lexington, Ky., where 
he occupied a professorship in Transylvania university, and the pas- 
torate of two congregations near that place. In 1819 he connected 
with the Presbyterian church and became pastor of McChord church, 
Lexington. In 1820 he was made first president of Miami university. 
In this connection he served for a time as pastor of the Presbyterian 
church at Oxford. In Kentucky he was reckoned as one of her 
best pulpit orators. In 1844 he severed his connection with Miami 
and became president of Farmers' college at College Hill, where 
he served until his death. 

The pioneer Methodist preacher of the Miami valley was Francis 
McCormick, who was born in Frederick county, Virginia, June 4, 
1764. In 1790 he became a local preacher. In 1795 he moved to 
Kentucky and two years later crossed the river into Ohio, locating 
at Milford in Clermont county. At his suggestion. Bishop Asbury 
sent Rev. John Kobler to Ohio, and it was at his cabin that the 
first class was organized. He acted as guide to Kobler on his first 
tour of the Miami country. He was instrumental in organizing a 


class near Lockland and another near Columbia, where he located 
in 1807. 

Rev. John Kobler was born in Virginia in 1768. At twenty- 
one he entered the ministry, and in 1798 he was appointed to the 
work in Ohio where he formed the Miami circuit, being- the first 
regularly appointed Methodist preacher in the northwest territory. 
He is described as tall and well proportioned, with long black 
hair, and unusual intellectual powers. The arduous work of the 
frontier undermined his health and he died after rendering eighteen 
years of ministerial service. 

Rev. John Collins was born of Quaker parentage in New 
Jersey, in 1789. At an early age he was licensed as a local preacher. 
In 1803 he moved to Ohio and settled on the east fork of the Little 
Miami where he purchased a tract of land. In 1807 he became an 
itinerant and attached to the Miami circuit. He was a man of 
prepossessing appearance, gentle spirit and great eloquence. He 
was the founder of the churches at Cincinnati, Columbia, Dayton, 
Hillsboro, and other places. He died in 1845. 

One thing of much importance that retarded the settlement 
of the Miami valley was the want of an organized commercial sys- 
tem. It has already been noted that a few well-to-do farmers met 
this difficulty occasionally by taking their own cargoes to New Or- 
leans, but the greater number did not produce in sufficient quantity 
to dispense with the services of the middleman in finding a mar- 
ket. Probably the earliest exporters of the products of the Miami 
valley were the pioneer merchants who followed in the wake of the 
settlers. It would appear that Cincinnati did very little exporting 
before 1800, when her merchants seemed to have become active in 
the purchase of the products of the surrounding country. From 
that time advertisements similar to the following appeared in in- 
creasing number : "Wanted : A quantity of corn-fed pork." "Good 
flour will be taken by the barrel, whiskey and corn at market prices." 
"The subscriber will pay cash for 100,000 weight of good corn-fed 
pork." "Wanted : 5,000 bushels of wheat, at 50 cents per bushel." 
Advertisements for contracts for future delivery of wheat and 
pork were frequent. Trade was principally by barter. Store goods 
were exchanged for country produce. This growing commercial 
spirit was also evidenced by frequent quotations of Cincinnati and 
New Orleans prices in the local papers. 

On August 31, 1802, John Wilkins, jr., through the Pittsburg 
Gazette, issued an address to the farmers, millers, traders and man- 
ufacturers of the western country, setting forth the difficulties of 
the Mississippi trade and proposing the organization of an ex- 
porting company in order to more efifectually meet them. The 
Pittsburgh district soon acted upon the suggestion, and near the 
close of the following winter the idea was taken up in Cincinnati, 
when Jesse Hunt, an experienced merchant and pioneer, suggested 
the formation of an exporting company to handle the entire exports 
of the Miami country. The organization, which was known as 
the Miami Exporting company, was chartered to do an exporting 
and an importing business, and it also was privileged to engage in 
business as a banking institution. It was the business of the direc- 


tors to build or purchase boats, employ superintendents and boat- 
men, transport to New Orleans produce entrusted to their care, 
sell it and make returns to the owners. That there was an effort to 
interest the entire Miami valley in the enterprise is shown by the 
fact that every important center of population in that region was 
represented on the committee appointed to receive subscriptions. 
In 1807 it ceased to engage in the exporting business, but continued 
to do business as a banking institution until 1822, when it was car- 
ried down by the financial crisis that began in 1835. It is needless 
to say that the exporting business continued to grow without the 
assistance of a co-operative company and that commercial firms 
continued to rise that met the demands of the rapidly increasing 
trade of the Miami valley. 

The organization of the Miami Exporting company was has- 
tened by the closure of the Mississippi river by the Spanish intend- 
ant at New Orleans, early in November, 1802. On January 19, 1803, 
the Western Spy published an extract from a New Orleans letter, 
dated November 12, saying that the orders of the intendant were 
rigidly enforced and that Americans had nothing to hope from his 
clemency. That the people of the valley were deeply interested in 
the situation is shown by the fact that from that time until the 
following July, when the Western Spy published in large type the 
news of the purchase of Louisiana, nearly every edition of a Cin- 
cinnati paper contained some communication on the subject. The 
whole thing was irritating, but trade was not entirely stopped; as 
exporters continued to advertise for "corn-fed pork," "good flour," 
"good whiskey," "country linen," "sugar," and "good merchantable 

The opening of the Mississippi by the purchase of the Louisiana 
territory and the admission of Ohio to the Union doubtless greatly 
accelerated immigration to the west and did much to increase the 
volume of exports. By 1805 it was estimated that 30,000 people 
a year were settling in Ohio, and a goodly portion of them were 
finding homes in the Miami valley. The development of the Miami 
country and the growing export business soon brought about a 
corresponding import business, and very frequently both branches 
of commerce were carried on by the same firm. By 1805 there were 
twenty-four merchants and grocers doing business in Cincinnati, 
and in 1809 upwards of thirty merchants were selling from $200,- 
000 to $250,000 worth of imported goods. The prosperity of the 
region and its advance in civilization is evidenced by the fact that 
its citizens were demanding some of the luxuries of life. As early 
as 1805, the merchants of this frontier m.etropolis were selling fine 
coatings and cassimeres, white and colored satins, silk stockings, 
silk and leather gloves, Irish linens, Morocco and kid shoes, um- 
brellas and parasols, and fine wines. 

The wholesale business of Cincinnati began not later than 1806. 
Dealers were then offering special inducements to country mer- 
chants, in order to divert their trade from eastern markets to 
Cincinnati. Some were offering to take at New Orleans market 
prices three-fourths of the amount of the purchase price in produce 
delivered at that point, and the balance cash. 


The merchants of today can little appreciate the difficulties en- 
countered by these early dealers. In order to sell their goods they 
were compelled to attend not only to the ordinary duties of a mer- 
chant and to incur ordinary responsibilities and risks, but also they 
were compelled to be the produce merchants of the country as well. 
They must take the farmers' produce and send or convey it to New 
Orleans, the only market for the west. It was necessary for the 
western merchant to buy pork and pack it, to buy wheat and have it 
ground into flour, to have barrels made to hold the flour, and then 
to build flat-bottomed boats and with considerable expense and 
great risk, float it down the Ohio and the Mississippi to New Or- 
leans. Having arrived at New Orleans and disposed of the cargo, 
the dangers were not over, as there was the long journey home. 
In returning there was the choice of routes. The merchant could 
either return home by land, a distance of 1,100 miles over the 
Natchez trace, 500 miles of which was through the Indian country, 
or go by sea to Philadelphia or Baltimore and thence home by 
land. The latter route was frequently chosen when the mer- 
chant wished to lay in a new stock of goods. One merchant of the 
Miami valley made fourteen such trips. On the first trip he had 
charge of five flatboats loaded with produce. Thirteen trips were 
made on flatboats and one on a barge. Eight times he traveled 
home by land and was usually about thirty days in making the 
journey from New Orleans to Cincinnati. 

A large part of the imports continued to come from Philadelphia 
or Baltimore until, and even after, the introduction of the steamboat. 
Once or twice in the year the merchant would go to one or both of 
those cities to buy goods. If, after selling his produce at New Or- 
leans, he did not go by sea from that place, he would start from 
his home and travel on horseback, a distance of 600 miles, or go 
by keel-boat to Pittsburg and thence over land to one of the coast 
cities. When the goods were purchased he must engage wagons to 
haul them over a bad road to Pittsburg at a cost of from $6 to $10 
per hundredweight; and after a journey of from twenty to twenty- 
five days over the mountains, he must buy flatboats or keel-boats 
and employ hands to take his goods to Cincinnati. The round trip 
from Cincinnati to Pittsburg usually consumed about three months, 
says McBride in his Pioneer History of Butler County. This grow- 
ing business soon brought about the construction of large ware- 
houses near the river and storage and commission firms began to 

There is little evidence showing the influence of the War of 
1812 on the settlement of the Miami valley, but it is probable that 
the export of products, under existing conditions, were somewhat 
interfered with. However, the demands of the northwestern army 
for sustenance doubtless compensated in this respect for any such 
loss. According to market quotations in the Western Spy, wheat 
was worth (ilYi cents per bushel in October, 1812, and rose to $1 
per bushel by the middle of the following December. John H. Piatt, 
the principal western army contractor, had frequent advertisements 
in the Cincinnati papers for pack horses, beef, cattle, hogs, flour, and 
whiskey. After the war the development of this region and its 


growing commerce is indicated by what appears to have been a 
great extension of the flatboat business. Under the head of Ship 
News, Cincinnati papers published the arrival and departure of 
barges. The following are some of the typical notices of the time : 

"Arrived on the 6th inst. the barge Cincinnati from New Or- 
leans. Cargo, sugar, cotton and molasses." 

"Arrived June 1, the barge. Nonesuch, Capt. M. Baum, from 
New Orleans. Cargo, cotton and sugar. Also, two large keel-boats, 
cargo same." 

"Arrived on Wednesday last, the barge Fox, Capt. Palmer, from 
New Orleans to Messrs. Marsh & Palmer ; cargo, sugar, cotton, and 

On the first anniversary of St. Jackson's Day, Liberty Hall pub- 
lished the following: 

"Sailed for New Orleans: 

"Barge Nonesuch, 100 tons flour and pork. 

"Barge Cincinnati, 115 tons flour and pork. 

"Barge Fox, 40 tons flour and pork. 

"Ten to 12 flat boats, each carrying 300 to 400 barrels, have 
sailed from Cincinnati within two months, loaded with pork, flour, 
lard and other products." 

In 1817 this extensive flatboat trade was carrying down the 
river for export from Cincinnati the surplus produce of about 100,- 
000 people, situated in what was then probably the richest and most 
productive agricultural section of the west. Flour, pork, and 
whiskey were the chief articles of export. Dr. Drake assures us 
that in 1815 the city exported annually several thousand barrels 
of flour to New Orleans, and it follows that a goodly portion of 
this export business was the product of the Miami valley. Richard 
Foster had given the people of the valley their first lessons in pork 
packing, and droves of swine were beginning to move toward Cin- 
cinnati for slaughter and shipment down the river. Nor did the 
commercial basis continue to be entirely agricultural. Local manu- 
facturers were beginning to contribute their share to the general 
development. Within the twenty-two years since the Treaty of 
Greenville, Cincinnati had increased from a village of 500 inhabitants 
to a city of a population of about 7,000; Dayton and other villages 
in the interior were rapidly increasing in size, and a considerable 
number of the inhabitants were engaged in manufacturing. Their 
principal business, of course, was to supply the local demand, but 
there had already begun a limited export of manufactured goods to 
regions farther west and south. Chief among these exports were 
beer, porter, cheese, soap, candles, spun yarn, lumber and cabinet 

With the beginning of the steamboat era, in 1817, a new impetus 
was given to the varied industries of the Miami valley and this 
influence caused the population to increase more rapidly. A rich 
agricultural region, under frontier conditions and primitive means 
of transportation, had developed until in some portions there was 
already a population of nearly forty-five inhabitants to the square 
mile, according to McMaster, in his History of the People of the 
United States. And this population was growing rapidly and de- 


manded an increasing quantity of manufactures and imported 
goods, for which it would be ready to exchange a large surplus of 
farm products. Raw material for manufacturing purposes was con- 
venient, and all the necessary advantages were present to make 
the Miami valley the center of a prosperous and progressive civili- 

Taking them in chronological order, Hamilton was the first 
settled of the seven counties that are considered in this work as 
forming the territory of the Miami valley. And Hamilton was the 
second county settled in the state of Ohio. On November 18, 1788, 
the first settlement was made at Columbia by Major Benjamin 
Stites, with a party of eighteen or twenty frontiersmen. The site 
of the village was a little below the mouth of the Little Miami and 
is now within the limits of the city of Cincinnati, five miles east of 
Fountain Square. Henry Howe, in his Historical Collections, says 
of these settlers that they were superior men. Among them were 
Col. Spencer, Major Gano, Judge Goforth, Francis Dunlavy, Major 
Kabbey, Rev. John Smith, Judge Foster, Col. Brown, Mr. Hubbell, 
Capt. Flinn, Jacob White, and John Riley, and for several years 
the settlement was the most populous and successful. 

Two or three blockhouses were first erected for the protection 
of the women and children, and then log cabins for the families. The 
boats in which they had come from Maysville, then Limestone, were 
broken up and used for the doors, floors, etc., to these rude build- 
ings. They had at that time no trouble from the Indians, which 
arose from the fact that they were then gathered at Fort Harmar to 
make a treaty with the whites. Wild game was plentiful, but their 
breadstuffs and salt soon gave out, and as a substitute they occa- 
sionally used various roots, taken from native plants, the bear grass 
especially. When the Spring of 1789 opened their prospects grew 
brighter. The fine bottoms on the Little Miami had long been 
cultivated by the savages, and were found mellow as ash heaps. 
The men worked in divisions, one-half keeping guard with their 
rifles while the others worked, changing their employments morn- 
ing and afternoon. 

Turkey Bottom, on the Little Miami, one and a half miles above 
Columbia, was a clearing in area of a square mile, and had been cul- 
tivated by the Indians for a long while, and supplied both Columbia 
and the garrison at Fort Washington at Cincinnati with corn for 
that season. From nine acres of Turkey Bottom, the tradition goes, 
the enormous crop of 963 bushels were gathered the very first sea- 
son. Before this the women and children from Columbia early vis- 
ited Turkey Bottom to scratch up the bulbous roots of the bear 
grass. These they boiled, washed, dried on smooth boards, and 
finally pounded into a species of flour, which served as a tolerable 
substitute for making various baking operations. Many of the 
families subsisted for a time entirely on the roots of the bear grass, 
and there was great suffering for provisions until they could grow 

The facts connected with the settlement of Cincinnati are given 
substantially as follows by Henry Howe: In September, 1788, a 
large party, embracing John Cleves Symmes, Benjamin Stites, Den- 


man, Patterson, Filson, Ludlow, with others, in all about sixty men, 
left Limestone to visit the new Miami purchase of Symmes. They 
landed at the mouth of the Great Miami and explored the country 
for some distance back from that and North Bend, at which point 
Symmes then decided to make a settlement. The party surveyed 
the distance between the two Miamis, following the meanders of 
the Ohio, and returned to Limestone. On December 24, 1788, Den- 
man and Patterson, with twenty-six others, left Limestone in a boat 
to found Losantiville. After much difficulty and danger from float- 
ing ice in the river, they arrived at the spot on or about the 28th, the 
exact date being in dispute. The precise spot of their landing was 
an inlet at the foot of Sycamore street, later known as Yeatman's 
Cove. Ludlow laid out the town. On January 7, ensuing, the set- 
tlers by lottery decided on their choice of donation lots, the same 
being given to each in fee simple on condition that he raised two 
crops successively, and not less than an acre for each crop ; that 
he built within two years a house equal to twenty-five feet square, 
one and a half stories high, with brick, stone, or clay chimney, each 
house to stand in front of the respective lot. The following is a 
list of settlers who so agreed, thirty in number: Samuel Blackburn, 
Sylvester White ; Joseph Thornton, John Vance, James Dumont, a 
man named Fulton, Elijah Martin, Isaac Van Meter, Thomas Gissel, 
David McClever, a man named Davidson, Matthew Campbell, James 
Monson, James McConnell, Noah Badgely, James Carpenter, Samuel 
Mooney, James Campbell, Isaac Freeman, Scott Traverse, Ben- 
jamin Dumont, Jesse Stewart, Henry Bechtle, Richard Stewart, 
Luther Kitchell, Ephraim Kibbey, Henry Lindsey, John Porter, 
Daniel Shoemaker, Joel Williams. The thirty in-lots in general 
terms comprised the space back from the landing between Main 
street and Broadway, and there the town was started. 

The North Bend settlement was the third within the Symmes 
purchase, and was made under the immediate care of Judge Symmes. 
The party, on their passage down the river, were obstructed, de- 
layed and exposed to imminent danger from floating ice, which cov- 
ered the river. However, they reached the bend, the place of their 
destination, in safety, early in February. The first object of the 
Judge was to found a city at that place, which had received the 
name of North Bend from the fact that it was the most northern 
bend in the Ohio river below the mouth of the Great Kanawha. 
The water-craft used in descending the Ohio, in those primitive 
times, were flatboats made of green oak plank, fastened by wooden 
pins to a frame of timber, and caulked with tow or any other pliant 
substance that could be procured. Boats similarly constructed on 
the northern waters were then called arks, but on the western rivers 
they were denominated Kentucky boats. The materials of which 
they were composed were found to be of great utility in the con- 
struction of temporary buildings for safety, and for protection from 
the inclemency of the weather, after they had arrived at their 

Gen. Harmar, at the earnest solicitation of Symmes, sent Capt. 
Kearsey with forty-eight rank and file to protect the improvements 
just commencing in the Miami valley. This detachment reached 


Limestone in December, 1788, and a few days later Capt. Kcarsey 
sent a part of his command in advance, as a guard to protect the 
pioneers under Major Stites, at the Little Miami, where they ar- 
rived soon afterward. Accompanied by Capt. Kearsey, Mr. Symmes 
and his party landed at Columbia, on their passage down the river, 
and the detachment previously sent to that place joined their com- 
pany. They then proceeded to the bend and landed, about the first 
or second of February. When they left Limestone it was the pur- 
pose of Capt. Kearsey to occupy the fort built at the mouth of the 
Miami by a detachment of United States troops who afterward 
descended the Ohio river to the falls at Louisville, but that purpose 
was defeated by the high water, which had spread over the low 
grounds and rendered it difficult to reach the fort. Thus disap- 
pointed, the captain resolved that he would not build a new fort, 
but would leave the bend and join the garrison at Louisville. In 
pursuance of that resolution, early in March, he descended the river 
with his command. Symmes immediately wrote to Major Willis, 
commandant of the garrison at the Falls, complaining of the con- 
duct of Capt. Kearsey, representing the exposed situation of the 
Miami settlement, stating the indications of hostility manifested 
by the Indians, and requesting a guard to be sent to the bend. This 
request was promptly granted, and before the close of the month 
Ensign Luce arrived with seventeen or eighteen soldiers, which, 
for a time, removed the apprehensions of the pioneers at that place. 
However, it was not long before the Indians made an attack on the 
settlement, and one soldier was killed and four or five others were 
wounded, including Major J. R. Mills, from Elizabethtown, New 
Jersey, who was a surveyor and an intelligent and highly respected 
citizen. Although he recovered from his wounds, he felt their 
disabling effects to the day of his death. 

The surface of the ground where Symmes and his party had 
landed was above the reach of the water and sufficiently level to 
admit of a convenient settlement. Therefore he determined, for 
the immediate accommodation of his party, to lay out a village at 
that place and to suspend, for the present, the execution of his pur- 
pose as to the city of which he had given notice until satisfactory 
information could be obtained in regard to the comparative ad- 
vantages of different places in the vicinity. However, the deter- 
mination to lay out such a city was not abandoned, but was executed 
in the succeeding year on a magnificent scale. It included the vil- 
lage and extended from the Ohio across the peninsula to the Miami 
river. This city, which was certainly a beautiful one, on paper, 
was called Symmes, and for a time was a subject of conversation 
and of criticism ; but it soon ceased to be remembered — even its 
name was forgotten, and the settlement continued to be called 
North Bend. Since then, that village has been distinguished as the 
home of William Henry Harrison, soldier and statesman, whose re- 
mains now repose in an humble vault on one of its beautiful hills. 

In conformity with a stipulation made at Limestone, every 
individual in the party received a donation lot, which he was re- 
quired to improve as the condition of obtaining a title. As the 
number of these adventurers increased, in consequence of the pro- 


tection afforded by the military, Symmes was induced to lay out 
another village, six or seven miles higher up the river, and which 
place he called South Bend, where he disposed of some donation 
lots; but that project failed, and in a few years the village was 
deserted and converted into a farm. 

In the midst of these transactions, Symmes was visited by a 
number of Indians from a camp in the neighborhood of Stites' settle- 
ment. One of them, a Shawnee chief, had many complaints to make 
of frauds practiced on them by white traders, who fortunately had 
no connection with the pioneers. After several conversations, and 
some small presents, the chief professed to be satisfied with the 
explanation he had received and gave assurances that the Indians 
would trade with the white men as friends. In one of their inter- 
views, Symmes told the chief that he (Symmes) had been commis- 
sioned and sent out to their country, by the thirteen fires, in the 
spirit of friendship and kindness, and that he was instructed to 
treat them as friends and brothers. In proof of this he showed them 
the flag of the Union, with its stars and stripes, and also his com- 
mission, which bore the great seal of the United States, exhibiting 
the American eagle with the olive branch in one claw, emblematical 
of peace, and the instrument of war and death in the other. He ex- 
plained the meaning of those symbols to the satisfaction of the In- 
dians, though at first the chief seemed to think they were not very 
striking emblems, either of peace or friendship ; but before he de- 
parted from the bend he gave assurances of the most friendly char- 
acter. Yet, when they left their camp to return to their towns, they 
carried off a number of horses belonging to the Columbia settle- 
ment, to compensate for the injuries done them by wandering trad- 
ers who had no part or lot with the pioneers. These depredations 
having been repeated, a party was sent out in pursuit, and the trail 
of the Indians was followed a considerable distance, when they 
discovered fresh signs and sent Capt. Flinn, one of their party, in 
advance to reconnoitre. He had not proceeded far before he was 
surprised, taken prisoner, and carried to the Indian camp. Not 
liking the movements he saw going on, which seemed to indicate 
personal violence in regard to himself, and having great confidence 
in his activity and strength, at a favorable moment he sprang from 
the camp, made his escape and rejoined his party. Fearing an 
ambuscade, the Indians did not pursue. The party possessed them- 
selves of some horses belonging to the Indians and returned to 
Columbia. In a few days the Indians brought in Capt. Flinn's 
rifle and begged Major Stites to restore their horses, alleging that 
they were innocent of the depredations laid to their charge. After 
some further explanations, the matter was amicably settled and 
the horses were given up. 

Although they had one general object and were threatened by 
one common danger, there existed a strong spirit of rivalry among 
these three settlements — the first in the Miami valley; each person 
feeling a pride in the prosperity of the little colony to which he be- 
longed. That spirit had a strong influence on the pioneers of the 
different villages and produced an esprit du corps, scarcely to be 
expected under circumstances so critical and dangerous as those 


which threatened them. At first it was a matter of doubt which of 
the rivals — Columbia, Cincinnati, or North Bend — would event- 
ually become the chief seat of business. However, the doubt lasted 
but a short time. The garrison having been established at Cincin- 
nati, that fact made it the headquarters and the depot of the army, 
and as soon as the county courts of the territory were organized 
it was made the seat of justice of Hamilton county. These ad- 
vantages convinced everybody that it was destined to become the 
metropolis of the Miami country. 

A large number of the original adventurers to the Miami pur- 
chase had exhausted their means by paying for their land and re- 
moving their families to the country. Others were wholly desti- 
tute of property and came out as volunteers, under the expectation 
of obtaining, gratuitously, such small tracts of land as might be 
forfeited by the purchasers, under Judge Symmes, for not making 
the improvements required by the conditions stipulated in the terms 
of "sale and settlement of Miami lands, published by Symmes in 
1787. The class of adventurers first named was comparatively 
numerous, and had come out under an expectation of taking imme- 
diate possession of the lands and of commencing the cultivation of 
them for subsistence. Therefore, their situation was distressing. To 
go out into the wilderness to till the soil appeared to be certain 
death ; to remain in the settlements threatened them with starva- 
tion. The best provider of the pioneers found it difficult to obtain 
subsistence ; and, of course, the class now spoken of were not far 
from total destitution. They depended on game, fish, and such prod- 
ucts of the earth as could be raised on small patches of ground 
in the immediate vicinity of the settlements. Small lots of provi- 
sions were brought down the river by immigrants, occasionally, and 
sometimes were transported on packhorses from Lexington, at a 
heavy expense, and not without danger. But supplies, thus pro- 
cured, were beyond the reach of the destitute. 

Having endured these privations as long as they could be 
borne, the more resolute of them determined to brave the conse- 
quences of moving on to their lands. To accomplish the object 
with the least exposure, those whose lands were in the same neigh- 
borhood united as one family, and on that principle a number of 
associations were formed, amounting to a dozen or more, who went 
out resolved to maintain their positions. Each party erected a 
strong blockhouse, near to which their cabins were put up, and the 
whole was enclosed by strong log pickets. This being done, they 
commenced clearing their lands and preparing for planting their 
crops. While they were at work, during the day, one person was 
placed as a sentinel to warn them of approaching danger. At sun- 
set they retired to the blockhouse and their cabins, taking every- 
thing of value within the pickets. They proceeded in this manner 
from day to day and week to week till their improvements were 
sufficiently extensive to support their families. They depended for 
subsistence during this time on wild game, obtained at some hazard, 
more than on the scanty supplies they were able to procure from 
the settlements on the river. In a sjiort time these stations gave 
protection and food to a large number of destitute families. After 


they were established, the Indians became less annoying- to the set- 
tlements, as part of their time was employed in watching the sta- 
tions. However, the former did not escape, but endured their share 
of the fruits of savage hostility. In fact, no place or situation was 
exempt from danger. The safety of the pioneer depended on his 
means of defense and on perpetual vigilance. The Indians viewed 
those stations with great jealousy, as they had the appearance of 
permanent military establishments, intended to retain possession 
of their country. In that view they were correct, and it was for- 
tunate, as the settlers lacked either the skill or the means of de- 
molishing them. The great error of the Indians consisted in per- 
mitting those works to be constructed. They might have prevented 
it with ease, but they appeared not to be aware of the serious conse- 
quences until it was too late to act with effect. However, several 
attacks were made, at different times, with an apparent determina- 
tion to destroy them ; but they failed in every instance. The assault 
made on the station erected by Capt. Jacob White, a pioneer of much 
energy and enterprise, at the third crossing of Mill creek from Cin- 
cinnati, on the old Hamilton road, was resolute and daring; but it 
was gallantly met and successfully repelled. The attack was in 
the night, and in the fight which ensued Capt. White shot and 
killed a warrior, who fell so near the blockhouse that his com- 
panions could not remove his body. The next morning it was 
brought in, and judging from his stature, as reported by the inmates, 
he might have claimed descent from a race of giants. The appear- 
ances of blood on the ground in the vicinity of the blockhouse indi- 
cated that the assailants had suffered severely. 

In the winter of 1790-1, a strong party, estimated at probably 
four or five hundred, made an attack on Dunlap's Station, at Cole- 
rain. The blockhouse at that place was occupied by a small num- 
ber of United States troops, commanded by Col. Kingsbury, then 
a subaltern in the army. The fort was furnished with a piece of 
artillery, which was an object of terror to the Indians; yet that did 
not deter them from an attempt to effect their purpose. The attack 
was violent, and for some time the station was in imminent danger. 
The savages were led by the notorious Simon Girty and outnum- 
bered the garrison at least ten to one. The works were entirely of 
wood, and the only obstacle between the assailants and the assailed 
was a picket of logs that might have been demolished with a loss 
probably not exceeding twenty or thirty lives. The garrison dis- 
played unusual gallantry, frequently exposing their persons above 
the pickets to insult and provoke the assailants; and judging from 
the facts reported their conduct was as much folly as bravery. Col. 
John Wallace, of Cincinnati, one of the earliest and bravest of 
the pioneers, and as amiable as he was brave, was in the fort when 
the attack was made. Although the works were completely sur- 
rounded by the enemy, the Colonel volunteered to go to Cincinnati 
for reinforcement. The fort stood on the east bank of the Big 
Miami, and late in the night he was conveyed across the river in 
a canoe and landed on the opposite shore. Having passed down 
some miles below the fort, he swam the river and directed his course 
for Cincinnati, The next day he met a body of men from that 


place and from Columbia, proceeding- to Colerain. They had been 
informed of the attack by persons hunting in the neighborhood and 
who had been sufficiently near the fort to hear the firing when it 
began. The Colonel joined the party and led them to the station 
by the same route he had traveled from it ; but before they arrived 
the Indians had gone. Abner Hunt, a respectable citizen of New 
Jersey, who was on a surveying tour in the neighborhood of Colerain 
at the time of the attack, was killed before he could reach the fort. 
His body was found, shockingly mangled. The Indians had tied 
him to a sapling within sight of the garrison and built a large fire 
so near as to scorch him, inflicting the most acute pain. And he was 
thus literally roasted to death. 

The route of St. Clair, in his disastrous campaign of 1791, 
passed through Butler county, and in September of that year Fort 
Hamilton was built at the crossing of the Great Miami on the site 
of the present city of Hamilton. It was intended as a place of 
deposit for provisions and to form the first link in the communica- 
tion between Fort Washington and the object of the campaign. It 
was a stockade of fifty yards square, with four good bastions and 
platforms for cannon in two of them, with barracks. In the summer 
succeeding an addition was made to the fort by order of Gen. 
Wilkinson, which consisted in enclosing with pickets an area of 
ground on the north part, so that it extended up the river to about 
the north line of the present Stable street. The southern point 
of the work extended to the site afterward occupied by the Asso- 
ciate Reformed church. From manuscript left by the late James 
McBride and published in Howe's Collections, the following items 
of early history are gleaned : 

Late in the fall of 1792, an advance corps of troops, under the 
command of Major Rudolph, arrived at Fort Hamilton, where they 
wintered. They consisted of three companies of light dragoons, one 
of rifle, and one of infantry. Rudolph was a major of dragoons 
from lower Virginia. His reputation was that of an arbitrary and 
tyrannical officer. Some time in the spring seven soldiers deserted 
to the Ohio river, where, procuring a canoe, they started for New 
Orleans. Ten or fifteen miles below the falls of the Ohio they were 
met by Lieut, (afterward Gen.) Clark and sent back to Fort Hamil- 
ton, where a court-martial sentenced three of them to be hung, two 
to run the gauntlet, and the remaining two to lie in irons in the 
guardhouse for a stipulated period. John Brown, Seth Blinn, and 
a man named Gallagher were the three sentenced to be hanged, and 
the execution took place the next day. Five hundred soldiers 
were drawn up in arms around the fatal spot to witness the exit of 
their unfortunate comrades. Immediately after the sentence had 
been pronounced on these men, a friend hastened to Fort Washing- 
ton, where he obtained a pardon from Gen. Wilkinson. But he 
was too late. The execution had been hastened by Major Rudolph, 
and the friend arrived at Hamilton fifteen minutes after the spirits 
of these unfortunate men had taken their flight to another world. 
Their bodies were immediately committed to the grave under the 
gallows. The two other deserters were sentenced to run the gaunt- 
let sixteen times between two ranks of soldiers, and this punish- 


ment forthwith was carried into execution. The lines were formed 
in the rising ground east of the fort, where afterward Front street 
was laid out, and extended to the intersection of Ludlow street. 

Some time afterward Gen. Wayne arrived at the post, and 
although frequently represented as an arbitrary man, he was much 
displeased with the cruelty of Major Rudolph and gave him his 
choice, either to resign or be cashiered. He chose the former, re- 
turned to Virginia, and subsequently, in company with another 
gentleman, purchased a ship and went on a trading voyage to Eu- 
rope. It is related that they were captured by an Algerian cruiser 
and that Rudolph was hanged at the yardarm of his own vessel. 

In the summer of 1792 two wagoners were watching some 
oxen, which had been turned out to graze on the common below 
the fort. A shower of rain coming on, they stepped under a tree for 
shelter, and some Indians, who had been watching from under the 
covert of the adjoining underbrush, rushed suddenly upon them, 
killed one, and took the other prisoner. The latter was Henry 
Shafer, who afterward returned and lived for many years a few 
miles below Rossville, on the river. 

In September, 1793, the army of Wayne marched from Cin- 
cinnati to Fort Hamilton and encamped in the upper part of the 
prairie, about half a mile south of the present city, nearly on the 
same ground on which Gen. St. Clair had encamped in 1791. Here 
they threw up a breastwork, the remains of which may yet be 
traced at the point where the present road strikes the Miami river. 
A few days afterward they continued their march toward the In- 
dian country. Gen. Wayne detailed a strong guard of men for the 
defense of the fort, the command of which was given to Major 
Jonathan Cass, of the army of the Revolution, and father of the 
Hon. Lewis Cass, later prominent as a United States Senator from 
Michigan. Major Cass continued in command until the treaty of 

On December 17, 1794, Israel Ludlow laid out, within Symmes' 
purchase, the original plat of the town of Hamilton, which he at 
first, for a short time only, called Fairfield. Shortly afterward a 
few settlers came in. The first settlers were Darius C. Orcut, John 
Green, William McClennan, John Sutherland, John Torrence, Ben- 
jamin F. Randolph, Benjamin Davis, Isaac Wiles, Andrew Christy, 
and William Hubbert. Previous to 1801 all the lands on the west 
side of the Great Miami were owned by the United States, conse- 
quently there were no improvements made on that side of the river, 
except by a few squatters. There was one log house built at an 
early period near the west end of the bridge. On the first Monday 
in April, 1801 — at the first sale of United States lands west of the 
Miami, held at Cincinnati — a company purchased the site of Ross- 
ville, on which, March 14, 1804, they laid out the town. John Reily 
was the agent for the proprietors. 

The first settlers of Hamilton suffered much from the fever 
and ague, and, being principally disbanded soldiers, without energy, 
and many of them dissipated, but little improvement was made for 
the first few years. In those early times horse-racing was a favorite 
amusement and an afifair of all engrossing interest. On public days, 


indeed on almost every other Saturday, the streets and commons 
in the upper part of the town were converted into race-paths. The 
race course comprehended the common from Second to Fourth 
street. On grand occasions the plain within the course and near it 
was occupied with booths erected with forks and covered with 
boughs. Here everything was said, done, eaten, sold and drunk. 
Here was Black Jack with his fiddle, and his votaries making the 
dust fly with a four-handed, or rather four-footed reel; and every 
fifteen or twenty minutes was a rush to some part to see a "fisticuff." 
Among the bustling crowd of jockeys were assembled all classes. 
Even judges of the court mingled with the crowd, and sometimes 
presided at the contests of speed between the ponies of the neigh- 

Soon after the formation of Butler county Hamilton was made 
the county seat. The first sessions of the court were held in the 
tavern of Mr. Torrence, and later sessions were held in the former 
messroom of the fort. In 1810 the court was removed to a room 
over the stone jail, and in 1817 transferred to a newly erected court- 
house. At their July term, in 1803, the court selected the old mag- 
azine within the fort as a county jail. It was a heavy-built log 
building, about twelve feet square, with a hipped roof coming to a 
common center, and surmounted by a ball. The door had a hole in 
the center shaped like a half-moon, through which air, light, and 
food were conveyed, while on the outside it was secured by a pad- 
lock and hasp. It was very insecure, and escapes were almost as 
frequent as committals. It was the only jail for Butler county 
from 1803 to 1809. A small log house, formerly a settler's store, 
was used as a clerk's office. The house erected by Gen. Wilkinson, 
in 1792, for officers' quarters, was converted into a tavern, kept by 
the county sherift, William McClennan, while the barracks and 
artificers' shops were used as stables. 

On September 21, 1795, William Bedle, from New Jersey, set 
out from one of the settlements near Cincinnati with a wagon, tools 
and provisions, to make a new settlement in the Third or Military 
range. This was about one month after the fact had become known 
that Wayne had made a treaty of peace with the Indians. He trav- 
eled with a surveying party under Capt. John Dunlap, following 
Harmar's trace to his lands, where he left the party and built a 
blockhouse as a protection against the Indians, who might not re- 
spect the treaty of peace. This was the first attempt at permanent 
occupation in what is now Warren county, and Bedle's Station came 
to be a well-known place in its early history. It was located five 
miles west of Lebanon and nearly two miles south of Union vil- 
lage. There several families lived in much simplicity, the clothing 
of the children being made chiefly out of dressed deerskin, some 
of the larger girls being clad in buckskin petticoats and short gowns. 
About the time of the settlement of Bedle's Station, however, or 
not long afterward, William Mounts and five others established 
Mounts' Station, on a broad and fertile bottom on the south side of 
the Little Miami, about three miles below the mouth of Todd's 
Fork, building their cabins in a circle around a spring as a protec- 
tion against the Indians. But South Lebanon, originally called 


Deerfield, is probably the oldest town in the county. Its proprie- 
tors gave a number of lots to those who would erect houses on them 
and become residents of the place. On January 25, 1796, the pro- 
prietors advertised in the Centinel of the Northwest Territory that 
all the lots they proposed to donate had been taken, and that twen- 
ty-five houses and cabins had been erected. Benjamin Stites, sr., 
Benjamin Stites, jr., and John Stites Gano were the proprietors. 
The senior Stites owned nearly ten thousand acres between Lebanon 
and Deerfield. Andrew Lytle, Nathan Kelly, and Gen. David Sut- 
ton were among the early settlers at Deerfield. The pioneer and 
soldier, Capt. Ephraim Kibbey, died there in 1809, aged 55 years. 
In the spring of 1796 settlements were made in various parts of the 
county. The settlements at Deerfield, Franklin, and in the vicini- 
ties of Lebanon and Waynesville, all date from the spring of 1796. 
A few cabins may have been erected at Deerfield and Franklin 
in the autumn of 1795, but it is not probable that any families were 
settled at either place until the next spring. Among the earliest 
white men who made their homes in the county were those who 
settled on the forfeitures in Deerfield township. They were poor 
men, destitute of means to purchase land, and were willing to brave 
dangers from savage foes and to endure the privations of a lonely 
life in the wilderness to receive gratuitously the tract of 106^ 
acres forfeited by each purchaser of a section of land who did not 
commence improvements within two years after the date of his 
purchase. In a large number of the sections below the third range 
there was a forfeited one-sixth part and a number of hardy adven- 
turers had established themselves on the northeast corner of the 
section. Some of these adventurers were single men, living alone in 
little huts and supporting themselves chiefly with their rifles. Others 
had their families with them at an early period. 

The site of the present city of Dayton was selected in 1788 by 
some gentlemen who designed laying out a town by the name of 
Venice. They entered into an agreement with John Cleves Symmes, 
for the purchase of the lands. But the Indian wars which ensued 
prevented the extension of settlements from the immediate neigh- 
borhood of Cincinnati for some years, and the project was aban- 
doned. Soon after Wayne's treaty, in 1795, a new company, com- 
posed of Gens. Jonathan Dayton, Arthur St. Clair, James Wilkinson, 
and Col. Israel Ludlow, purchased the lands between the Miamis, 
around the mouth of Mad river, of Judge Symmes, and on Novem- 
ber 4th laid out the town. Arrangements were made for its settle- 
ment in the ensuing spring, and donations of lots were offered, with 
other privileges, to actual settlers. Forty-six persons entered into 
engagements to remove from Cincinnati to Dayton, but before 
spring most of them had scattered in different directions and only 
nineteen fulfilled their engagements. The first families who made 
a permanent residence in the place arrived on April 1, 1796. The 
first nineteen settlers of Dayton were William Gahagan, Samuel 
Thomson, Benjamin Van Cleve, Solomon Goss, Thomas Davis. 
John Davis, James McClure, John McClure, Daniel Ferrell, William 
Hamer, Solomon Hamer. Thomas Hamer, Abraham Glassmire, 
John Dorough, William Chenoweth. James Morris, William New- 


com, and George Newcom. Judge Symmes was unable to complete 
his payments for all the lands he had agreed to purchase of the 
government, and those lying about Dayton reverted to the United 
States, by which the settlers were left without titles to their lots. 
Congress, however, passed a pre-emption law, under which those 
who had contracted for lands with Symmes and his associates had 
a right to enter the same lots or lands at government price. Some 
of the settlers entered their lots and obtained titles directly from 
the United States ; and others made an arrangement with Daniel 
C. Cooper to receive their deeds from him, and he entered the resi- 
due of the town lands. He had been a surveyor and agent for the 
first company of proprietors, and they assigned him certain of their 
rights of pre-emption, by which he became the titular proprietor 
of the town. In 1803, on the organization of the state government, 
Montgomery county was established and Dayton was made the 
seat of justice, at which time only five families resided in the town, 
the other settlers having gone onto farms in the vicinity or re- 
moved to other parts of the country. The increase of the town was 
gradual until the war of 1812, when it became a point on the thor- 
oughfare for the troops and stores on their way to the frontier. Its 
progress was then more rapid until 1820, when the depression of 
business put an almost total check to its increase, but the com- 
mencement of the Miami canal, in 1827, renewed its prosperity. 

Among the first settlers who established themselves in Miami 
county was John Knoop. He removed from Cumberland county, 
Pennsylvania, in 1797. In the spring of that year he came down 
the Ohio to Cincinnati and cropped the first season on a farm, four 
miles above Cincinnati. That summer he made two excursions into 
the Indian country with surveying parties and at that time selected 
the land he afterward occupied. Early the next spring, in 1798, 
he removed to near the present site of Staunton village and, in con- 
nection with Benjamin Knoop, Henry Garard, Benjamin Hamlet, 
and John Tildus, established there a station for the security of their 
families. Mrs. Knoop there planted the first apple tree introduced 
into Miami county. They remained at the station two years, during 
which time they were occupied in clearing and building on their 
respective farms. At this time there were three young single men 
living at the mouth of Stony creek, and cropping on what was 
afterward called Freeman's Prairie. One of these was D. H. Morris, 
and at the same time there resided at Piqua, Samuel Hilliard, Job 
Garrard, Shadrach Hudson, Jonah Rollins, Daniel Cox, Thomas 
Rich, and a man named Hunter. These last three had removed to 
Piqua in 1797, and together with the company at a nearby station, 
comprised all the inhabitants of Miami county from 1797 to 1799. 
In the latter year John, afterward Judge Garrard, Nathaniel and 
Abner Garrard; and the year following, Uriah Blue, Joseph Coe, 
and Abraham Hathaway came in with their families. From that 
time all parts of the county began to receive numerous immigrants. 
For many years the citizens lived together on footings of the most 
social and harmonious intercourse. For their accommodation they 
sought the mill of Owen Davis, afterward known as Smith's Mill, 
on Beaver creek, a tributary of the Little Miami, some twenty-seven 


miles distant. Two days were consumed in the trip. Only one 
man was killed in the settlement from 1797 to 1811. This person 
was one Boyier, who was shot by a straggling party of Indians, 
supposedly through mistake. 

For some time the most popular milling was at Patterson's, 
below Dayton, and with Owen Davis, on Beaver; but the first mill 
in Miami county is thought to have been erected by John Manning, 
on Piqua bend. Nearly the same time Henry Garrard erected on 
Spring creek a corn and sawmill. 

Staunton was the first place of permanent settlement in the 
county and the nucleus from which its civilization spread. It was 
the first platted town. Among the earliest settlers of Staunton were 
Levi Martin and Andrew Dye. Most of the pioneers wore buckskin 
pantaloons. One was Tom Rogers, a great hunter, who lived in 
two sycamore trees in the woods. He had long gray whiskers, a 
skull cap and buckskin pantaloons. The first survey of Troy was 
made by Andrew Wallace, in 1807, with additions from time to time. 
On December 2nd of that year Robert Crawford was appointed town 
director, and he gave bonds to the county commissioners to pur- 
chase the land for the seat of justice and lay it off into streets and 

The first white family who settled in Shelby county was that of 
James Thatcher, in 1804, who settled in the west part on Painter's 
run, and Samuel Marshall, John Wilson, and John Kennard came 
soon afterward. The first court was held in a cabin at Hardin, 
May 13 and 14, 1819. Hon. Joseph H. Crane, of Dayton, was the 
president judge; Samuel Marshall, Robert Houston, and William 
Cecil, associates; Harvey B. Foot, clerk; Daniel V. Dingman, 
sheriff, and Harvey Brown, of Dayton, prosecutor. The first mill 
was a sawmill, erected in 1808 by Daniel McMullen and Bilderbach. 

Logan county was first settled about the year 1806. The names 
recorded of the early settlers are Robert and William Moore, Ben- 
jamin and John Schuyler, Philip and Andrew Mathews, John Mak- 
imson, John and Levi Garwood, Abisha Warner, Joshua and Samuel 
Sharp, David and Robert Marmon, Samuel and Thomas Newell, 
and Benjamin J. Cox. In the War of 1812 the settlements in this 
county were on the verge of civilization and the troops destined 
for the northwest passed through this region. There were several 
blockhouse stations in the county: Manary's, McPherson's, Vance's 
and Zane's. Manary's, built by Capt. James Manary, of Ross 
county, was three miles north of Bellefontaine ; McPherson's stood 
three-fourths of a mile northwest, and was built by Capt. .Maltby, 
of Green county; Vance's, built by ex-Gov. Vance, then captain of 
a rifle company, stood on a high bluiT on the margin of a prairie, 
about a mile east of Logansville ; Zane's blockhouse was at Zanes- 

The Maimi valley is rich to excess in names of men known 
to the nation as possessed of rare intellect, wide attainments and 
great force of character ; and it would seem to be fitting in this con- 
nection to give biographical mention of some of the noted char- 
acters : 

Othniel Looker was born in New York, in 1757. He was a 


private in the war of the revolution and a man of humble origin and 
calling. His history is little knpwn, but, being speaker in the Ohio 
Senate, by virtue of that office he became acting governor for eight 
months when Gen. Meigs resigned to go in President Madison's cab- 
inet. He was later defeated as a candidate for governor by Thomas 

John Reily was born in Pennsylvania, in 1763. In 1791 he re- 
moved to Cincinnati, and in 1803 settled in Hamilton. He served 
as a member of the first constitutional convention of Ohio. His 
friend, Judge Burnet, in his Notes, refers to Reily's character and 
services. He was clerk of the supreme court of Butler county from 
1803 to 1842, and died at the age of eighty-seven years. He was a 
man of clock-work regularity of habits and system, and could in a 
few minutes find a paper he had not seen in twenty years. In every 
respect he was a first-class man. 

Jeremiah Morrow was born in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, Oc- 
tober 6, 1771. H!e was of Scotch-Irish descent, the family name be- 
ing originally Murray. In 1795 he removed to the northwest terri- 
tory and settled at the mouth of the Little Miami river, but soon 
moved up to what is now Warren county. In 1801 he was elected 
to the territorial legislature ; was a delegate to the first constitutional 
convention, in 1802; was elected to the state senate in 1803, and in 
the same year to Congress, serving for ten years as the sole repre- 
sentative of Ohio in the lower house. In 1814 he was commissioner 
to treat with all of the Indians west of the Miami river. From 
1813 to 1819 he was a member of the United States senate and 
served as chairman of the committee on public lands. In 1822 he 
was elected governor and at the end of his term was re-elected. He 
served as canal commissioner in 1820-22, and he was also the first 
president of the Little Miami railroad company. In 1841 he was 
again elected to Congress, and he died March 22, 1852. While in 
Congress, Mr. Morrow drafted most of the laws providing for the 
survey and disposal of public lands. He introduced measures which 
led to the construction of the Cumberland road, and in February, 
1816, presented the first report recommending a general system 
of internal improvements. 

Daniel C. Cooper was born in Morris county, New Jersey, 
November 20, 1773. He came to Cincinnati about 1793, as the agent 
for Jonathan Dayton, of New Jersey, who was interested in the 
Symmes purchase. He obtained employment as a surveyor, and his 
business gave him an opportunity to examine lands and select valu- 
able tracts for himself. In 1794-1795, he accompanied the survey- 
ing parties led by Col. Israel Ludlow through the Miami valley. As 
a preparation for the settlement of Dayton, by the direction of the 
proprietors, in September, 1795, he marked out a road from Fort 
Hamilton to the mouth of Mad river. In the 'fall and winter he 
located 1,000 acres of fine land in and near Dayton. In the sum- 
mer of 1796 he settled there, building a cabin at the southeast cor- 
ner of Monument avenue and Jefferson street. About 1798 he moved 
out to his cabin on his farm, south of Dayton. There, in the fall 
of 1799, he built a distillery, "corn cracker" mill, and a sawmill. 
and made other improvements. St. Clair, Dayton, Wilkinson, and 


Ludlow, on account of Symmes' inability to complete his purchase 
from the United States, and the high prices charged by the gov- 
ernment for land, were obliged to relinquish their Mad river pur- 
chase. Soon after the original proprietors retired Mr. Cooper pur- 
chased pre-emption rights and made satisfactory arrangements with 
land owners. Many interests were involved, and the transfer was 
a work of time. He was intelligent and public-spirited, and to his 
enlarged views, generosity, and integrity, and business capacity, 
much of the later prosperity of the city was due. He induced set- 
tlers to come to Dayton by donations of lots, gave lots and money 
to schools and churches, provided ground for a playground and a 
public common, later known as Cooper park, and built the only 
mills erected in Dayton in the first ten years of its history. He was 
appointed justice of the peace for Dayton township, Oct. 4, 1799, 
and served till May 1, 1803, the date of the formation of Mont- 
gomery county. In 1810-1812 he was president of the Select Council 
of Dayton, and he was seven times elected a member of the state 
legisature. Mr. Cooper died, July 13, 1818. 

Benjamin Stanton was born of Quaker parentage on Short 
Creek, Belmont county, Ohio, March 4, 1809. He was bred a tailor, 
which appears to have been a favorite trade for young Friends, 
probably from its humanitarian aspects — "clothing the naked." He 
studied law and was admitted to the bar at Steubenville, in 1833 ; 
came to Bellefontaine in 1834, and was successively prosecuting at- 
torney, state senator, member of the Ohio Constitutional Conven- 
tion in 1851, and served several terms as a member of Congress. In 
1861 he was elected lieutenant-governor of Ohio, on the same ticket 
with Gov. David Tod. In 1866 he removed to West Virginia, where 
he practiced law until his death. 

Ethan Allen Brown was born in Darien, Conn., July 4, 1766. 
He studied law with Alexander Hamilton, and settled in Cincinnati, 
in 1804. From 1810 to 1818 he was a supreme judge, and then was 
elected governor and began agitating the subject of constructing 
canals. In 1820 he was re-elected over Jeremiah Morrow and Gen. 
William Henry Harrison. In 1822 he was elected to the United 
States senate, and from 1830 to 1834 he was United States minister 
to Brazil. Later, he served as commissioner of public lands and 
then retired to private life. He died in Indianapolis, in 1852, after 
a long and useful career. 

The governor of Ohio during the Mexican War, 1846-48, was 
William Bebb. He was born of Welsh stock, in 1802, on the Dry 
Fork of Whitewater, in Morgan township, Butler county. He re- 
moved to the Rock river country, in Illinois, early in the fifties, 
where he had a large farm, and he later went to Europe and led a 
colony of Welsh colonists from Wales to the wilderness of Scott 
county, Tennessee. He lived to be a pension examiner under 
Lincoln and help in the election of Grant ; and he died at his home 
in Rockford, 111"., in 1873. 

Judge Francis Dunlevy, who died at Lebanon, Warren county, 
in 1839, was born in Virginia, in 1761. When he was ten years of 
age his family removed to Western Pennsylvania. At the early 
age of fourteen years he served in a campaign against the Indians. 


and continued mostly in this service until the close of the revolu- 
tion. He assisted in building Fort Mcintosh, about the year 1777, 
and was afterward in the disastrous defeat of Crawford, from 
whence, with two others, he made his way alone through the woods 
without provisions, to Pittsburgh. In 1787 he removed to Ken- 
tucky, in 1791 to Columbia, and in 1797 to Warren county. By 
great perserverance he acquired a good education, mainly without 
instructors, and part of the time taught school and surveyed land 
until the year 1800. He was elected from Hamilton county a mem- 
ber of the convention which formed the state constitution. He was 
also a member of the first legislature, in 1803, and at the first or- 
ganization of the judiciary he was appointed presiding judge of the 
first circuit. This place he held fourteen years, and though his 
circuit embraced ten counties, he never missed a court, frequently 
swimming his horse over the Miamis rather than fail being present. 
On leaving the bench he practiced at the bar fifteen years and then 
retired to his books and study. 

Benjamin Van Cleve was a typical man, and, as a good repre- 
sentative of the best pioneer character, is worthy of especial notice. 
He kept a journal, from which the following facts pertaining to his 
career have been mainly drawn. He was the eldest son of John and 
Catherine Benham Van Cleve, and was born in Monmouth county. 
New Jersey, Feb. 24, 1773. When he was seventeen years old the 
family removed to Cincinnati, Jan. 3, 1790, and settled on the east 
bank of the Licking, where Major Leech, in order to form a settle- 
ment and have a farm opened for himself, offered 100 acres for 
clearing each ten-acre field, with the use of the cleared land for 
three years. John Van Cleve, the father, intended to assist his son 
in this work, but was killed by the Indians. Benjamin by hard 
work as a day laborer, paid his father's debts, sold his blacksmith's 
tools to the quartermaster-general, and tried to the best of his 
ability, though a mere boy, to fill his father's place. Much of the 
time, from 1791 till 1794, he was employed in the quartermaster's 
department, whose headquarters were at Fort Washington, earning 
his wages of fifteen dollars a month by hard, rough work. He was 
present at St. Clair's defeat, and gives in his journal a thrilling ac- 
count of the rout and retreat of the army, and of his own escape 
and safe return to Cincinnati. In the spring of 1792 he was sent off 
from Cincinnati at midnight, at a moment's notice, by the quarter- 
master-general, to carry despatches to the war department at 
Philadelphia. In the fall of 1795 he accompanied Capt. Dunlap's 
party, to make the survey for the Dayton settlement. On April 
10, 1796, he arived in Dayton with the first party of settlers that 
came. In the fall of that year he went with Israel Ludlow and 
William G. Schenck to survey the United States military lands 
between the Scioto and Muskingum rivers. In the winter of 1799- 
1800 he taught in the blockhouse the first school opened in Dayton. 
From the organization of Montgomery county in 1803, till his death 
in 1821, he was clerk of the court. He was the first postmaster of 
Dayton and served from 1804 until his death. In 1805 he was one 
of the incorporators of the DaytGn library, and in 1809 he was ap- 
pointed by the legislature a member of the first board of trustees 


of Miami university. He was an active member of the First Pres- 
byterian church. 

Logan county is rich to excess in names of men who have been 
known to the nation as possessed of rare intellect, wide attainments 
and great force of character. High on this list unquestionably 
stands the name of William H. West. Mr. West was born at Mills- 
borough, Washington county, Pennsylvania, and with his parents 
came to Knox county, Ohio, in 1830. He graduated at Jefferson 
college, Pennsylvania, in 1846, dividing the honors with Gen. A. 
B. Sharpe. He taught school in Kentucky until 1848, when he ac- 
cepted a tutorship in Jefferson college, and a year later was chosen 
adjunct professor at Hampden-Sidney college, Virginia. In 1850 
he entered as a student the law office of Judge William Lawrence 
at Bellefontaine, Ohio, and on his admission to the bar formed a 
law partnership with his tutor. Judge West was one of the few 
prominent men who formed the Republican party. It was in 1854 that 
he joined in an appeal to all parties, after the repeal of the Mis- 
souri Compromise, that brought out a convention at Columbus, 
Ohio, when West was one of the most prominent speakers, and 
Joseph R. Swan was nominated as a candidate for judge of the su- 
preme court of Ohio, and through the aid of another newly formed 
political organization called the "Know Nothings" was elected by a 
majority of more than 75,000. In 1857 and in 1861 Judge West was 
a member of the state legislature, serving in the House, and in 1863 
he was elected to the Senate. Afterward his party in the Logan 
Congressional district sent him as their delegate to the Chicago 
convention, when he took part in the nomination of Abraham 
Lincoln. In 1865 and 1867 he was chosen attorney-general of Ohio, 
and in 1869 was tendered the position of Consul to Rio Janeiro, but 
declined. In 1871 he was elected judge of the supreme court of 
Ohio, and was making his mark as an able jurist, when his failing 
sight forced him to resign. The marked event of his political life 
occurred in 1877, when he was nominated by his party, in state con- 
vention assembled, its candidate for governor. The great railroad 
strikes that arrested the wheels of nearly all the locomotives of 
150,000 miles of operating railroads was on hand, and the newly 
named candidate for governor had to meet the issue involved in the 
strife. It was one Judge West had studied and mastered. He knew 
what capital and labor meant, and he felt keenly all that it signified. 
He saw then Avhat has developed since, that it was fated to be the 
great issue of civilization and had to be faced and solved before 
the wheels of progress could continue to revolve, and in his first 
utterance after his nomination he took the side of toil against the 
corporations. He was defeated at the election, and then retired 
to his home at Bellefontaine, where he continued in the practice of 
his profession practically until his death. 

Thomas L. Young was born on the estate of Lord Dufferin, in 
North Ireland, Dec. 14, 1832. He came to this country at fifteen 
years of age and served ten years as a private in the regular army, 
entering in the last year of the Mexican War. In 1859 he came to 
Cincinnati, graduated at its law school, and when the Civil War 
broke out he was assistant superintendent of the House of Refuge 


reform school. On March 18, 1861, he wrote a letter to Gen. Win- 
field Scott, whom he personally knew, offering his services for the 
coming war, thus becoming the first volunteer from Harnilton 
county. He eventually entered the army, was commissioned 
colonel, and for extraordinary gallantry at Resaca was brevetted 
general. In 1866 he was elected to the legislature, in 1872 served as 
senator, and in 1876 was elected lieutenant-governor, succeeding 
R. B. Hayes, when the latter became President. He died, July 19, 
1888, singularly admired for his thorough manliness. 

John B. Weller, born in Hamilton county in 1812, had a success- 
ful career. When but twenty-six years of age he was elected to 
Congress and was re-elected for two succeeding terms. He led the 
second Ohio regiment, as lieutenant-colonel, in the Mexican War, 
and returning thence led the Democratic party in the bitter guberna- 
torial fight of 1848, being defeated by Seabury Ford, of Geauga 
county, the Whig candidate. In 1849 he was commissioned to 
run the boundary line between California and Mexico. From 1852 
to 1857 he was United States senator from California and then was 
elected governor. In 1860 he was appointed by Buchanan minister 
to Mexico, and he died in New Orleans, where he was practicing 

William C. Schenck, father of Gen. R. C. Schenck and Ad- 
miral James F. Schenck, was born near Freehold, N. J., Jan. 11, 
1773. He studied both law and medicine, undetermined which to 
make his life profession, and finally adopted that of surveyor. He 
came to Ohio as agent for his uncle, Gen. John N. Gumming, prob- 
ably also of Messrs. Burnet, Dayton, and Judge Symmes. He be- 
came one of the most competent surveyors in the west. In 1796 
he surveyed and laid out the town of Franklin, in Warren county, 
and in 1797 he set out to survey what was known as the Military 
Tract. In the winter of 1801-02 he surveyed and laid out the town 
of Newark, and in 1816 surveyed and laid out Port Lawrence, nov/ 
known as Toledo. In 1799 Gen. Schenck was elected secretary of 
the first territorial legislature, and he was a member of the first 
senate of the state of Ohio. In 1803 he removed from Cincinnati to 
Warren county, locating in the village of Franklin, where he lived 
until his death, in 1821. During the war of 1812 he held a com- 
mission in the militia, but owing to the confused and imperfect con- 
dition of the records in the office of the adjutant-general of Ohio, 
it has seemed to be impossible to determine just what services he 
performed with the army or what rank he held. Some time previous 
to the war he had resigned a commission of brigadier-general of 
militia, which rank he had held for a long time. At the outbreak 
of the war he was present with his troops in the field at an early 
date. Gen, Schenck was one of the early and active promoters of 
the Ohio canal system, and in 1820 he was appointed by Governor 
Brown one of the commissioners to survey the route of a canal. In 
further prosecution of the project, Gen. Schenck made a speech be- 
fore the legislature, to which he had been elected from Warren 
county, warmly advocating the immediate construction of the canal. 
At the close of his speech he left the house and went to his lodgings, 
where he was seized with a sudden attack of illness and died with- 


in a few hours. He was highly esteemed throughout the state as a 
man of a high order of mental ability, unimpeachable integrity and 
an active, useful citizen. 

John W. VanCleve was born, June 27, 1801, and tradition says 
he was the first male child born in Dayton. His father was Ben- 
jamin VanCleve, heretofore mentioned as one of the band of set- 
tlers who arrived in Dayton, April 1, 1796. John W. VanCleve 
from his earliest years gave evidence of a vigorous intellect and of 
a retentive memory. At the age of sixteen he entered the Ohio 
university at Athens, and so distinguished himself for proficiency 
in Latin that he was employed to teach that language in the college 
before his graduation. In after life he mastered both the French 
and German languages and made several translations of important 
German works. He studied law in the office of Judge Joseph Mc- 
Crane, and was admitted to the bar in 1828. Not finding the practice 
of the law congenial, he purchased an interest in the Dayton Jour- 
nal and edited that paper until 1834. After being engaged in other 
business for a few years, in 1851 he retired and gave the remainder 
of his life to his studies and to whatever could benefit and adorn 
his native city. He was elected and served as mayor of the city in 
1831-32. He also served at various times as city civil engineer, and 
in 1839 compiled and lithographed a map of the city. He was an 
ardent Whig and entered enthusiastically into the celebrated politi- 
cal campaign of 1840, writing many of the songs and furnishing the 
engravings for a campaign paper, called the Log Cabin, which at- 
tained great notoriety throughout the United States. He was the 
founder of Dayton Library association, afterward merged in the 
public library, and the invaluable volumes of early Dayton news- 
papers, from 1808 to 1847, was his gift to the library. It was his 
suggestion to plant the levees with shade trees, and the first trees 
were selected by him and planted under his direction. But the 
chief work for which the city is indebted to him is the foresight 
which secured the admirable site for the Woodland cemetery, before 
it was appropriated to other uses. In 1840, when the cemetery asso- 
ciation was organized, public attention had not been generally called 
to the importance and desirability of rural cemeteries, and the sug- 
gestion at that time of a rural cemetery for Dayton was in advance 
of the times. Woodland cemetery is the third rural cemetery in 
order of time in the United States, preceding Spring Grove at Cin- 
cinnati three years. To Mr. VanCleve the honor is due of sug- 
gesting the cemetery and persistently carrying it through to com- 
pletion. Mr. VanCleve died, Sept. 6, 1858, at the comparatively 
early age of fifty-seven years. 

Edward Henry Knight was born in London, England, June 1, 
1824, and died in Bellefontaine, Jan. 22, 1883, at which place he 
had had legal residence the last twenty-five years of his life, al- 
though absent a large part of the time, in Washington, Paris, and 
England. He was educated in England, where he learned the art 
of steel-engraving and took a course in surgery. In 1846 he set- 
tled in Cincinnati as a patent attorney. In 1864 he was employed 
in the patent office at Washington, where he originated the system 
of classification. In 1873 he issued his most important work, the 


American Mechanical Dictionary. He was a member of the inter- 
national juries at the World's Fair in Philadelphia, in 1876, and 
Paris, in 1878; and he was United States commissioner at the last 
named exposition, receiving the appointment of Chevalier of the 
Legion of Honor from the French government, in recognition of his 
services. He was a member of many scientific societies, both - 
American and European, and in 1876 he received the degree of 
LLD. from Iowa Wesleyan university. He compiled what is known 
as Bryant's Library of Poetry and Song, was the author of a num- 
ber of valuable scientific and other works, and one of the most use- 
ful men in research and literature that America has produced. 
After death his brain was found to weigh sixty-four ounces, being 
the heaviest on record, excepting that of Cuvier. 

William Henry Harrison was born at Berkley, on the James 
river, twenty-five miles from Richmond, Va., in 1773. He entered 
Hampden-Sydney college, which he left at seventeen years of age. 
He then began the study of medicine, but the death of his father 
checked his professional aspirations, and the note of preparation 
which was sounding through the country for a campaign against 
the Indians of the west, decided his destiny and he resolved to enter 
into the service of his government. Gen. Washington yielded to 
the importunities of the youth and presented him with an ensign's 
commission. With characteristic ardor he departed for Fort Wash- 
ington, now Cincinnati, where, however, he arrived too late to 
participate in the unfortunate campaign of St. Clair. In the suc- 
ceeding year, when Wayne assumed the command. Ensign Harrison 
was selected by him for one of his aides, and distinguished himself 
in Wayne's victory. After the treaty of Greenville, in 1795, he was 
given command of Fort Washington, and shortly afterward he 
married the daughter of Judge Symmes, the proprietor of the Miami 
purchase. He resigned his commission and commenced his civil 
career at the age of twenty-four years, as secretary of the north- 
western territory, and in 1799, he was elected its first delegate in 
Congress. He was appointed chairman of the committee on lands 
and though meeting with much opposition from speculators, secured 
the passage of a law for the subdivision of public lands into smaller 
tracts. To this measure is to be imputed the rapid settlement of 
the Miami valley, and in fact the entire country north of the Ohio 
river. Shortly afterward, when Indiana was erected into a separate 
territory, Mr. Harrison was appointed by President Adams its first 
governor. While in Congress, he was present at the discussion of 
the bill for the settlement of Judge Symmes' purchase, and although 
this gentleman was his father-in-law, he took an active part in 
favor of those individuals who had purchased from Symmes be- 
fore he had secured his patent. In 1801 Governor Harrison entered 
upon the duties of his new office at the old military post of Vin- 
cennes. Among his duties was that of commissioner to treat with 
the Indians, and in this capacity he concluded fifteen treaties and 
purchased their title to upwards of seventy million acres of land. 
He applied himself with characteristic energy and skill to his 
duties. He commanded at the battle of Tippecanoe, and from that 
time until after the declaration of war against England he was un- 


remittingly engaged in negotiating with the Indians and preparing 
to resist a more extended attack from them. In August, 1812, he 
received the brevet of major-general in the Kentucky militia, to 
enable him to command the forces marching to relieve Detroit. The 
surrender of Hull changed the face of affairs and he was appointed 
a major-general in the army of the United States, his duties em- 
bracing a larger sphere. On Oct. 5, 1813, he brought the British 
army and their Indian allies, under Proctor and Tecumseh, to ac- 
tion near the river Thames. For this important action Congress 
presented Gen. Harrison with a gold medal. The northwestern 
frontier being thus relieved, he left his troops at Sackett's Harbor, 
under the command of Col. Smith, and departed for Washington 
by the way of New York, Philadelphia and Baltimore, and on the 
whole route he was received with enthusiasm. Owing to a mis- 
understanding with Secretary Armstrong he resigned his commis- 
sion in the spring of 1814, and retired to his farm at North Bend, 
in Ohio, from which he was successively called by the people, to 
represent them in the Congress of the United States and in the 
legislature of the state. In 1824 he was elected to the Senate of 
the United States, and in 1828 he was appointed minister to Co- 
lombia, which station he held until he was recalled by President 
Jackson, not for any alleged fault, but in consequence of some 
difference of views on the Panama question. Gen. Harrison again 
returned to the pursuits of agriculture at North Bend, and in 1834, 
on the almost unanimous petition of the citizens of the county, he 
was appointed prothonotary of the court of Hamilton county. In 
1840 he was called by the people of the United States to preside 
over the country as its chief magistrate, and his death, which took 
place, April 4, 1841, just a month after his inauguration, caused a 
deep sensation throughout the country. He was the first President 
of the United States to die in office. 

John Woods was born in Pennsylvania, in 1794, of north Irish 
stock. He came when a mere child with his parents to Warren 
county, Ohio. He served in Congress from 1825 to 1829, and then 
edited and published the Hamilton Intelligencer. From 1845 to 
1851 he was auditor of the state, in which office he brought order 
out of confusion and "left indelible marks on the policy and history 
of Ohio." Later, he was interested in railroad development, and 
from his habits of industry and restless energy proved a great 
power. He died in 1855, aged sixty-one years. It seems that from 
early boyhood he determined to get an education and become a 
lawyer. The country all around was a wilderness and he con- 
tracted to clear a piece of land for a certain compensation. In this 
clearing he erected a hut, where he studied nights when others 
slept, and this after having chopped and hauled heavy timber all 
day. Then regularly every week he went over to Lebanon to re- 
cite and receive instructions from Hon. John McLean, later asso- 
ciate justice of the United States supreme court. In this Woods 
was, however, but a fair sample of Ohio youth of that day, to whom 
obstacles served as lures to tempt them to fight their way. The 
history of Ohio is profusely dotted all over with them. On their 
brows is stamped "invincibility," and over them flies a banner bear- 
ing just two words, "will" and "work," 


PHYSIOGRAPHICALLY considered, the Miami valley con- 
sists of the whole area drained by the two Miarni rivers and 
their tributaries including the Whitewater river, which stream 
enters the Great Miami from the west not far above its mouth. 
Thus considered, it embraces the major part of western Ohio and 
much of eastern Indiana. Generally speaking, it is delimited on 
the west by the Ohio-Indiana boundary line and is one of those 
areas into which Ohio is sometimes subdivided. 

This division is justified on other than physiographic grounds 
Its settlement was due to one of several well defined movements of 
population into the area now embraced within the state. First 
there was the advance of individualistic representatives of the Penn- 
sylvania-Virginia frontier population into the eastern section of 
the state known as the Seven Ranges. Following them were the 
New Englanders of the Ohio company with their political and social 
institutions. After them there came into the Miami valley Judge 
Symmes at the head of a middle states contingent and Patterson 
and Filson heading the Kentucky advance, to be followed by Scotch- 
Irish Presbyterians and English Quakers from the Carolinas and 
Georgia seeking to escape from contact with slavery, and by 
Germans from Pennsylvania and later direct from Europe in quest 
of good lands and a larger liberty. Into the Virginia lands, lying 
between the Little Miami and Scioto rivers, Col. Massie led the 
veterans of the Virginia regiments while the Western Reserve was 
occupied by settlers from Connecticut and their fellow New Eng- 
landers. These movements of population continued until their 
vanguards met near the center of the state and then they crossed 
and interflowed as they moved out to occupy the northwest section 
of the state. Thus it is that the Miami valley is not only physically 
different but possesses cultural characteristics that differentiate her 
from the other areas of the state. 

Of the many interesting accounts given us of the valley during 
the early days of its development that by Dr. Drake written but 
little more than a century ago is the most graphic. At that time the 
valley boasted of a population of 90,000. 

Cincinnati had about one thousand houses, a stone courthouse 
with dome, Presbyterian, Methodist, Baptist and Friends' meeting- 
houses, two banks, two newspapers, a library, a two-story building 
in process of erection for the accommodation of the newly founded 
Lancastrian seminary, and a number of manufacturing establish- 
ments, including one stone mill. 

Hamilton had seventy houses, chiefly log, a postof^ce and print- 
ing office, but no public buildings save a stone jail. Lebanon was 
a considerable village with houses of brick and wood, a courthouse 



and a schoolhouse, Baptist and Methodist churches, a stone jail, a 
printing office, a library, a bank, and several manufactories. 

Franklin had forty-five families, grist and saw mills and a 
postoffice. Dayton had one hundred dwellings, principally wood, a 
courthouse, a Methodist meetinghouse, a brick academy, a library of 
two hundred and fifty books, a bank, a postoffice, and a printing 

Xenia was a group of wooden houses with a courthouse, one 
church, a postoffice, and printing office. Urbana, having been the 
base of the recent military operations, had developed into a town of 
about one hundred houses, with a newspaper and bank, but without 
any public buildings. West of the Miami river was Greenville, a 
military post, and Eaton, with thirty dwellings and a postoffice, 
but with no public buildings. Oxford he describes as a sparsely 
populated village located on the frontier of the state, that had gained 
notoriety from having been fixed on as the seat of a university. 

During the half decade following the close of the war 1812-15, 
population moved into this area so rapidly that the census of 1820 
reports a total of 166,193. Cincinnati had developed into "a large 
commercial city" with 10,000 inhabitants. Hamilton now had "a 
bank, mercantile stores and 100 dwelling houses," while Franklin 
had increased to 80 families. Dayton had 150 buildings with numer- 
ous mills and Urbana had increased to 120 houses with 644 in- 
habitants. Xenia had added two churches, an academy, several 
stores and a number of brick and stone houses while its inhabitants 
had increased to 589. Greenville was now a town of "1,154 inhabi- 
tants and four stores," and Eaton had 40 families. Oxford is 
described as a flourishing post town with a postoffice, three stores, 
two taverns and a number of useful mechanics. 

The census of 1910 reports this area as having a population of 
more than one million. The joint population of its two largest 
cities is given at 480,168, while that of Hamilton and Springfield 
exceeds 82,000. Of cities over 10,000, Middletown and Piqua each 
have more than 13,000 each, while Xenia, Troy and Sidney approxi- 
mate 10,000 each. There are numerous other places that have from 
2,000 to 5,000 population. 

Today this area contains 2 of the 5 cities of Ohio that have 
a population exceeding 100,000, 2 of the 8 that have from 25,000 
to 100,000, 3 of the 19 that range from 10,000 to 25,000, and 7 of the 
41 that have from 5,000 to 10,000. The report of the United States 
commissioner of education for 1916 indicates these 14 cities as hav- 
ing a school population of 165,399, with 3,266 teachers and a total 
expenditure for school purposes of $5,709,456. It also indicates that 
this area possesses 12 of the 40 colleges within the state, 7 of the 
15 theological seminaries, 2 of the 5 law schools, and 1 of the 4 
medical colleges, 2 of the 4 dental colleges and 1 of 4 schools of 

Educational Status 100 Years Ago. What of the educational 
status of the Miami valley 100 years ago. The typical schoolhouse of 
the Miami valley at the beginning of the last century and its manner 
of erection has been thus well described. "As the pioneers built 
their cabins in close proximity, they immediately began to look 


after the education of their children, and for this purpose they se- 
lected some central point in the woods for a school site. Usually 
the place chosen was near a branch for the convenience of having 
water near at hand for the use of the scholars. 

This being done, the pioneer settlers, on a day agreed upon, 
turned out with axes, crosscut saw, broadaxe, plow and some augers, 
and convened early in the morning at the school site agreed upon. 
Some went to felling the tall trees overshadowing the site, others 
cutting logs near by in the woods, others felling a large oak for 
clapboards, and still others cutting a sightly blue ash tree for pun- 
cheons, benches and writing desks. By the time the site was cleared, 
the logs began to arrive, being snaked through the woods by horses. 
The foundation was soon laid, and four men were selected as corner 
men, who took their respective stations and, with axe in hand, sad- 
dled and notched down the corners as the logs were delivered to 
them on skids. When the structure was about eight feet in height, 
the joists were laid from one side to the other, which consisted of 
round saplings cut the proper length. This was called the base- 
ment. The gable ends were then commenced by shortening the 
logs, sloping the ends and inserting the rib poles, until the slopes 
terminated on a pole at the top. The upper log of the basement 
projected about eight inches, to receive the butting or eave log, 
against which the slanting roof rested. From this point the clap- 
boards were projected and carefully placed, and the points covered 
by an additional board. The knees were placed on the roof, with 
ends resting against the butting or eave log, and the wight pole 
resting against the upper ends of the knees, and so on until the 
house was covered. 

As the building was going up, the cross-cut saw was heard in 
the woods, the maul and wedge severing the cuts, and the butts 
were removed to some fork of a tree near by, where they were rived 
into boards four feet in length. Not far distant the puncheons 
were being prepared for the floor, benches, desks and doors. As the 
work progressed, logs were removed from three sides of the house, 
and the window styles prepared, which were adjusted in their 
places, about sixteen inches apart, to which newspapers were pasted, 
and oiled by "coon" grease to render them transparent in order to 
afford light for the scholars. The chimney space was made about 
ten feet in width, by removing the logs in one end of the house, and 
a wooden mantelpiece and jams adjusted, and a stick and clay 
chimney built on the outside, projecting higher than the comb of the 
roof, and the whole structure covered with clay mortar. The cracks 
were chinked and daubed, the floor laid, the puncheon door hung 
on wooden hinges, the writing desks attached to the wall, resting 
on standards slightly inclining towards the scholars, who sat on 
benches and learned to write in front of the large paper windows. 
In this way the primitive schoolhouse was reared and usually com- 
pleted in one day, without a nail or a window glass connected with 
the structure. Many of these primitive schoolhouses were still 
standing in Preble county as late as 1826, and the last one was only 
removed a few years ago. It stood a long time as a memento of 
the past, but finally, with all the pioneer settlers, it passed away, 


and the site where it stood has long since been plowed over, and not 
a vestige of it now remains. 

However, school buildings of better construction soon began to 
be erected. The schoolhouse first erected on the college township 
in 1811 was a hewed log building, 20x30 feet in size, with a 
fireplace at either end, the cost of which was $297, while that at 
Hamilton of similar construction was two stories in height. The 
one erected in the same year in Eaton is described as a hip roofed 
frame building. In the larger settlements, brick buildings began 
to be erected as early as 1807. The one erected in Dayton in 1820 
is described as a specially constructed single room building 62x32 
feet, heated by convolving flues underneath the brick floor. That 
provided in 1815 for the Cincinnati Lancastrian school is said to 
have been a capacious two-story brick edifice, consisting of two 
oblong wings, extending from Walnut parallel to Fourth street, 88 
feet in depth, and connected by apartments for staircases, 18x30 
feet. This intermediate portion supports a handsome dome, origi- 
nally designed for an observatory. The upper story of each wing 
is divided into three rooms. The entire building is capable of receiv- 
ing about 1,000 pupils. The building was said to have been at that 
time the finest structure west of the Alleghenies. 

The general custom of those writing of the educational de- 
velopment of Ohio has been to disparage the cultural interest and 
ideals of the southwestern portion of the state. One such writer 
gives the following description of our early schools : 

The teachers of the pioneer schools in southwestern Ohio 
were selected more on account of their unfitness to perform manual 
labor than by reason of their intellectual worth. The few schools 
established in this section were taught by cripples, worn-out old 
men, and women physically unable to scotch hemp and spin flax, 
or constitutionally opposed to the exercise. Educational sentiment 
was at a low ebb, and demanded from the instructors of children 
no higher qualifications than could be furnished by the merest 
tyro. Before school legislation and other instrumentalities effected 
salutary changes in the methods of school administration common 
to this locality, schools of worth were to be found only in the more 
populous centers. The estimation in which the teacher was held 
by the community at large was not such as to induce any young 
man or woman of spirit and worth to enter upon teaching as a voca- 

The teacher was regarded as a kind of pensioner on the bounty 
of the people, whose presence was tolerated only because county 
infirmaries were not then in existence. The capacity of a teacher 
to teach was never a reason for employing him, but the fact that he 
could do nothing else. Under such circumstances, it would be vain 
to look for superior qualifications on the part of the teachers. The 
people's demand for education was fully met when their children 
could write a tolerably legible hand, when they could read the 
Bible or an almanac, and when they were so far inducted into the 
mysterious computation of numbers as to be able to determine the 
value of a load of farm produce. 

A brighter picture presents itself when we consider the state 


of educational sentiment in that section of Ohio peopled with set- 
tlers from New England. They were not oblivious to the value of 
education in a utilitarian sense, but their notions of utility were 
broader and more comprehensive than those entertained by their 
southern neighbors. 

Another expresses the same judgment but in language so 
strikingly similar to that just quoted as to raise a question as to the 
value of his opinion. A third gives a very different opinion of the 
pioneer schoolteachers of whom he says : 

They were as a general rule men of a high moral standing, and 
qualified to teach all the first rudiments of a common school educa- 
tion, such as reading, writing, spelling, arithmetic and English 
grammar, and some of the higher branches of mathematics and 
algebra, but not many claimed the latter qualifications. But they 
were thorough in such branches as they professed to teach and if 
they found that ally pupils were close upon their heels in any branch, 
they became studious themselves to be prepared to impart instruc- 
tion to such. The teachers had an aptitude to teach and the pupils 
to receive instruction ; the spirit of emulation was infused by the 
former and seized and secured by the latter. 

Which of the judgments thus expressed is in accordance with 
the facts? What were the educational conditions and development 
of this area during the first quarter century of its history? Naturally 
one who considered the conditions that then prevailed, the primi- 
tive condition of society, the exposure to Indian attack, the dis- 
turbed conditions on their frontier, would not expect to find an 
organized educational system then existing. Was there, however, 
in the chaos of that period any principles that later evolved into our 
educational organism? 

Pioneer Schools. The pioneers of the Symmes purchase were 
little more than established in their new homes, when, exposed as 
they were to the Indian menace, they took thought for the educa- 
tion of their youth. On June 21, 1790, John Reily, of North Caro- 
lina, a veteran of Greene's army, and later a prominent lawyer, 
clerk of the legislature of the Northwest territory and president of 
the board of trustees of Miami university, opened a subscription 
school at Columbia. The year following he associated with him 
Francis Dunlevy of Virginia, who later served for sixteen years as 
presiding judge of the court of common pleas of Hamilton county, 
and as a member of the first constitutional convention and of the first 
state legislature. In the first educational enterprise, Reily taught the 
English branches and Dunlevy the classics. 

The first schoolhouse in Cincinnati was a log structure that 
stood at about Third and Lawrence. It is possible that the teacher 
of this school was Stuart Richey, who a little later advertises a 
school which seems to correspond in circumstances and location to 
this early school. This was soon succeeded by a frame building 
which Judge Burnet states was in progress of erection on his ar- 
rival in the city in 1795. Here as in so many places the Presbyterian 
minister devoted part of his time to education, as we find the Rev. 
James Kemper teaching school in the church building and later in 
a schoolhouse which he caused to be erected on the church lot. No- 


was the education of women neglected during these early days. As 
early as July, 1802, we find this advertisement in the Western Spy 
and Hamilton Gazette: "Mrs. Williams begs to inform the in- 
habitants of Cincinnati that she intends opening a school in the 
house of Mr. Newman Sadler, for young ladies on the following 
terms: Reading, 250 cents; Reading and Sewing, $3.00; Readmg, 
Sewing and Writing, 350 cents per quarter." These beginnings at 
education were largely due to individualistic effort. In 1811, a 
number of citizens associated themselves together, purchased a lot, 
erected a couple of buildings, and employing teachers, opened a 
school. This, due to the efforts of the Rev. Joshua L. Wilson, was 
'followed by the erection of a building, which was considered the 
finest of its day west of the Alleghenies, on a lot at the corner of 
4th and Walnut streets, donated by the Presbyterian church. Here 
in 1815 was opened the Cincinnati Lancastrian seminary under the 
supervision of Edmund Harrison. It was provided that the school 
should have a junior and a senior department and that the boys and 
girls should be instructed in separate groups. In less than two 
weeks after the opening of the junior department the enrollment 
was 420, and it became necessary to provide additional facilities. 
This school was made possible by the liberality of Gen. Lytle, 
Judge Burnet and others who made donations of land and money, 
the aggregate amount of which approximated $50,000. 

Due to the menace of the Indian, the cultural frontier was not 
far removed from the north bank of the Ohio, even until after the 
Treaty of Greenville in 1795. The first school in the interior of the 
Miami valley appears to have been that opened by Francis Dunlevy 
in 1798, a little west of the present city of Lebanon. Upon his 
election to the territorial legislature he was succeeded by David 
Spinney. Other schools were opened in Lebanon and throughout 
the county. One of these was taught by Francis Glass, who 
achieved quite a reputation as a teacher of Latin and Greek. 

Early in the 18th century a Mr. Richey opened a school on Front 
street, Hamilton. He is reputed to have been an excellent teacher, 
but was severe in government. From 1810 to 1814 Rev. Matthew G. 
Wallace, the founder of the Presbyterian church in Hamilton, oper- 
ated a school with a classical department. A picture of his school 
building shows it to have been a hewed log house, two stories in 
height. In 1815 a Mr. Proudfit, a student from Ohio university, 
opened a school. He is reputed to have excelled in the teaching of 
the languages. In 1818, the Hamilton literary society erected a sub- 
stantial building for educational purposes. In 1820, the Rev. 
Francis Montfort opened a school in which he taught not only the 
English branches but the classics and higher mathematics. 

Benjamin Van Cleve in his Memoirs, writing of the year 1719, 
notes that: "On the first of September, I commenced teaching a 
small school. I had reserved time to gather my corn and kept 
school until the last of October." After gathering his corn and serv- 
ing during the session of the territorial legislature as deputy clerk, 
he returned to Dayton and kept school about three months longer. 
This school is said to have been taught in a blockhouse that had 
been erected for defense against the Indians. It is also affirmed 


that lacking an adequate supply of books, he taught from wall 
charts prepared by himself. For this work his skill in drawing and 
mapmaking admirably fitted him. 

When Eaton was founded in 1806, a lot was set apart for 
educational purposes. It was not, however, until the following year 
that a school was opened in a private house by John Hollingsworth, 
who is described as a "fair teacher." In 1801, the lot was sold and 
the proceeds, $409.66, were invested in a more suitable lot on which 
a hip roofed frame building was erected. The equipment of the 
building was provided by voluntary contribution and the fuel was 
secured by a chopping frolic, as was ofttimes the case. The 
branches taught were spelling, reading, writing and arithmetic to 
"the single rule of three" though the classics were taught by the 
Presbyterian clergyman on the occasion of his teaching the 

The first schoolhouse in Miami county appears to have been 
that at Piqua and was erected in 1804. This gave way in 1808 to a 
more pretentious structure that was known as the academy. Rev. 
J. P. Finley opened a school. In 1813, Samuel Kyle opened the 
first school in Troy. 

The date of the establishment of the first school in Darke 
county is vested in uncertainty. It is known that a certain John 
Beers taught a school from about the year 1818 to 1830 and that 
others soon followed him. 

It was not until 1806 that the necessity of a school was felt by 
the residents of the then village of Springfield. In that year a cer- 
tain Nathaniel Pinkered opened a school which was the foundation 
stone of the present educational system. 

Pioneer Academies. From the foregoing it will be seen that 
the educational frontier of the Miami valley had advanced to the 
utmost limits of the valley. Not only elementary schools had been 
established quite generally throughout the valley, but a beginning 
had been made in a more comprehensive system of education. We 
have already noted that in many instances the schools indicated 
taught not only the common branches but also the classics and ad- 
vanced mathematics. In addition to these a number of academies 
or grammar schools had been established. Drake mentions such 
schools at Cincinnati, Dayton and Xenia and provision for one at 
Troy, as early as 1815. It appears that in each county, with the 
possible exception of Logan, one or more such institutions were in 
actual operation or had been provided for. Of the 38 such institu- 
tions known to have been founded ;n Ohio by 1820, 15 were to be 
found within the Miami valley. Of the best known of these, a few 
words may be spoken. Perhaps the most largely attended of these 
was the senior department of the Cincinnati Lancastrian school, to 
the junior department of which reference has already been made. 

Another academy of interest was that at Dayton, which was 
founded in 1807. This institution was incorporated by James 
Welsh, D. C. Cooper, William McClure, David Reid, John Folkeith, 
George Tennery, Benjamin Van Cleve and James Hanna. Two lots, 
a bell and a considerable sum of money were the gifts of Mr. Cooper, 
the founder of Dayton. The first teacher was William M. Smith. 


His contract required that he teach reading, writing, arithmetic, the 
classics and the sciences. Teaching in elocution was also given 
much prominence. For a time after 1815, Mr. Smith had as his 
assistant the Rev. James B. Finley, who later achieved distinction 
as a Methodist frontier preacher. In 1820, the school was placed 
in charge of Mr. Gideon McMillen, a graduate of the University of 
Glasgow. Under his supervision the Lancastrian system of educa- 
tion was introduced. For this purpose a new building was erected, 
which is described as a "specially constructed single room building 
62x32 feet." It was heated by convolving flues underneath the 
brick floor. The walls were hung with printed lesson charts be- 
fore which classes were placed to recite under the charge of moni- 
tors. A sand table was provided upon which the younger scholars 
copied the alphabet. 

Among the rules of this school were the following: 1. The 
moral and literary instruction will be studiously and diligently and 
temperately attended to. 2. They will be taught to read and spell 
deliberately and distinctly agreeably to the rules laid down by 
Walker's Dictionary. 3. Every day is to be an examination day 
upon which all who have leisure are invited to attend. 4. Any 
scholar found playing ball on the Sabbath or resorting to the woods 
or commons on that day for sport shall suffer such forfeits as the 
tutor shall think proper. 

This system did not meet the expectation of the patrons of the 
school and was soon discontinued, but its adoption is an evidence 
of an aspiring spirit on the part of the management and of a desire 
for educational betterment. 

Founding of Miami University. Another educational effort of 
a century ago was the grammar school of Miami university, some- 
times referred to as the Hughes grammar school. Though Miami 
university was begotten in the contract made by John Cleves 
Symmes with the government under the Articles of Confederation 
wherein it was stated, "One complete township to be given perpetu- 
ally for the use of an academy or college to be laid off as nearly oppo- 
site the mouth of the Licking river as an entire township may be 
found eligible in point of soil and situation, to be applied to the in- 
tended object by the legislature of the state." 

To us today who live in an age of rapid progress and large 
achievement, it may seem strange that a quarter century was re- 
quired to transform a township of land into an infant educational 
institution and twelve years more to develop it into a real college. 
We must bear in mind the difficulties that had to be overcome. 

The first of these related to the location of the college town- 
ship. In accordance with the above provision in his contract, Judge 
Symmes caused to be indicated on the map of his purchase, what is 
now known as Springfield township, Hamilton county, as the "col- 
lege township." After he had left for the west his associate in the 
east entered into an agreement with the government whereby the 
amount of the grant was fixed at 1,000,000 acres and its bounds 
modified. No mention being made in this agreement concerning the 
"college township," Judge Symmes concluded that it was forfeited 
by the reduction of the grant and sold a considerable portion of the 


designated township. The patent that was issued to Symmes, Sep- 
tember 30, 1792, provided that "one complete township or tract of 
land, of six miles square, to be located with the approbation of the 
governor for the time being, of the territory northwest of the river 
Ohio, and in the manner, and within the term of five years as afore- 
said, as nearly as may be, in the center of the tract of land, herein- 
before granted, hath been and is granted and shall be holden in 
trust, to and for the sale and exclusive interest and purpose of erect- 
ing and establishing therein, an academy and other public schools 
and seminaries of learning, and endowing and supporting the same 
and to and for no other use, intent or purpose whatever." In ac- 
cordance with this provision, Symmes in 1798 tendered to Gov. St. 
Clair the second township in the second fractional range (Greene 
township, Hamilton county) as being the only one then available. 
This the governor declined because it did not answer the descrip- 
tion of the one granted in the patent, was different in quality, and 
his title to it was questioned, Symmes then offered it to the terri- 
torial legislature, later to the state legislature, and finally in 1802 
presented the matter to congress. Congress on March 3, 1803, 
enacted, "That one complete township, in the state of Ohio, and 
district of Cincinnati, to be located under the direction of the legisla- 
ture of the said state, be, and the same is hereby, vested in the legis- 
lature of the state of Ohio, for the purpose of establishing an acad- 
emy, in lieu of the township already granted for the same purpose. 
Provided, however, that the same shall revert to the United States, 
if within five years after the passing of this act, a township shall 
have been secured for the said purpose, within the boundary of the 
patent." A committee appointed by the Ohio legislature located 
the present college township and the same was registered at the 
land office at Cincinnati September 1, 1803. No township within the 
patent being tendered the legislature within the prescribed five 
years, the township located in 1803 became the irrevocable posses- 
sion of the state to be applied to the end specified. 

A second cause of delay was the unusual form of tenure by 
which the lands were to be held. When equally good lands could 
be readily obtained for a few dollars per acre to which he would 
be given a title in fee simple, the settler who had any means pre- 
ferred to take up such lands. Instead of the prospect of a univer- 
sity drawing a desirable class of citizens to the college lands, they 
were taken up principally by persons who did not have the small 
sum necessary to purchase government lands or the squatter who 
bid in a tract, made a few rude improvements, sold off so much of 
the timber as he could market, obtained his living from the soil until 
he could dispose of his title for a small cash sum or was ejected 
for non-payment of taxes. Even today prospective buyers from 
the outside frequently decline to complete a purchase when they 
learn the nature of the title, while the rate of interest on mortgage 
loans is in advance of that which prevails in adjoining townships 
by reason of the fact that the insurance companies refuse to place 
loans on the college lands. 

A further hindrance to the steady consummation of the plans 
for building the university was the failure of the Browne mission. 


In 1811, Rev. John W. Browne, a Congregational clergyman from 
England, who with his son owned and edited The Liberty Hall of 
Cincinnati, was sent east to secure money for erecting and equip- 
ping a college building. Visiting Washington, Baltimore, and 
Albany he arrived in Boston in February, 1812. Here was his Water- 
loo. Encouraged to expect great things by the cordial commenda- 
tion which he received from the clergy, his solicitations were met 
with positive refusals by the politicians who were "principled 
against encouraging any state in league with the southern states." 
Disappointed in his expectations and disheartened by his failure at 
this point, he determined to await a more propitious period, and di- 
rected his course homeward, arriving at Cincinnati twelve days be- 
fore Hull's surrender of Detroit. The total amount of money col- 
lected was $2,566.75, but after paying the expenses of the trip and 
making certain deductions, the mission netted to the university only 
$713.38 in cash, somewhat more than a thousand volumes of books 
and a set of globes. It failed to secure the amount necessary to 
erect a college building which would have greatly enhanced the 
value and expedited the sale of the college lands. It was now neces- 
sary to defer the opening of the university until sufficient funds 
could be accumulated from the revenues from the lands to erect and 
equip the buildings. 

Still another hindrance was experienced in the contention that 
arose relative to the seat of the university. It has been noted that 
the college township as finally located lay without the Symmes 
purchase rather than within as originally provided. Where should 
the university itself be located? At a suitable spot most convenient 
to the mouth of the Licking river ; at a point central to the whole 
Miami country, or within the college township? Cincinnati, Leb- 
anon, Dayton and Yellow Springs were among the places that were 
suggested. The matter of site was referred to a committee con- 
sisting of U. S. Senator Alexander Campbell, James Kilborne, who 
was then serving as district surveyor, and Robert G. Wilson, D, D. 
The last, however, failed to be present when the other members 
having visited the several places proposed for the location of the 
university, decided on "a site in the county of Warren on the west- 
ern side of the town of Lebanon, on the land of Ichabod Corwin, at 
a white oak tree marked with the letters, 'M. U. V.' " However, 
due to the absence of Dr. Wilson, the legislature refused to accept 
the report of the committee and passed a bill, introduced by Mr. 
Cooper of Dayton, which provided: "That the Trustees of the 
Miami university shall cause a town to be laid oflf on such part of 
the land described in said acts, as they may think proper, to be 
known by the name of Oxford. That the said university is hereby 
established on said land, on such place thereof as the trustees may 
think proper; and that they are authorized and directed to cause 
such building or buildings to be erected, as they shall deem neces- 
sary for the accommodation of the president, professors, tutors, 
pupils and servants of said university, and also to procure the neces- 
sary books for the said university." This action was far from 
pleasing to the citizens of Cincinnati who felt, with some reason, 
that the institution should be closer to that place. 


The original provision was that the university site should be 
within the college township which as specified should be the first 
complete township opposite the mouth of the Licking river. This 
would have placed the institution so convenient to the city as to 
be readily accessible, whereas the site actually chosen was so re- 
mote as to be of little immediate advantage. 

Founding of Cincinnati College. However, the citizens of Cin- 
cinnati were determined upon having a college in their midst. Dr. 
Drake tells us that: "In the year 1806, a school association was 
formed in this place, and in 1807 it was incorporated. Its endow- 
ments were not exactly correspondent to its elevated title (Cincin- 
nati university), consisting only of moderate contributions; and an 
application was made to the legislature for permission to raise 
money by a lottery, which was granted. A scheme was formed and 
a great part of the tickets sold ; but they have, however, not been 
drawn, and but little of the money which they brought ($6,000) re- 
funded. On Sunday, the 28th of May, 1809, the schoolhouse erected 
by the corporation was blown down ; since which it has become ex- 

Until near the close of the second war with Great Britain, in- 
terest in education naturally was at low ebb. In 1814, when the 
agitation began, that resulted in the founding of the Cincinnati 
Lancastrian school, a movement was started to secure the removal 
of Miami university to Cincinnati. Failing in this, Cincinnati col- 
lege was founded in 1819, as the senior department of the Lancaster 
seminary. Fifty thousand dollars in money and land was con- 
tributed toward the maintenance of the institution. The Rev. 
Elijah Slack was chosen as the first president but gave place in 
1821, to Rev. Philander Chase, first bishop of the Protestant 
Episcopal diocese of Ohio and later founder of Kenyon college. Be- 
ing in straitened financial circumstances the college authorities pre- 
sented a memorial to the legislature of Ohio at the opening of its 
session in 1822, proposing to transfer the grounds and buildings of 
Cincinnati college together with certain other properties, the value 
of which was scheduled at $20,000, to the state of Ohio, provided 
she would make certain financial provision for the same. On Jan- 
uary 10th of the same year, Mr. Williams of Hamilton county pre- 
sented to the Ohio house of representatives a memorial from the 
president and trustees of Cincinnati college proposing to convey 
certain property to the Miami university upon condition that the 
said university be removed to Cincinnati ; which was read and laid 
on the table, the previous notice not having been given. One week 
later Mr. Williams reported a bill to the house which in substance 
was as follows : (a) The removal of Miami university from Oxford 
and the appointment of a commission to locate the same within the 
Symmes purchase at such a point as should be most conducive to 
the great ends of education. In making their choice the commis- 
sion should take into consideration donations which may be oflfered 
and the permanent interests of education, (b) That an academy 
known as Oxford academy should be established as a branch of said 
university under direction of a board of seven trustees to be ap- 
pointed by the university corporation, which should appropriate 


the one-eighth part of the funds arising or which may arise from 
the lands vested in the said university to the use and support of 
said academy, which was also to receive the buildings and ten acres 
of ground for its use and accommodation, (c) It was further pro- 
vided that any leaseholder who felt aggrieved by the removal of the 
university might surrender his lease, have the value of the improve- 
ments he had made appraised, and retain the use of the property, 
free of rent until the rentals equaled the appraised value of his im- 
provements. This bill provoked a lengthy discussion. Mr. Shields 
of Butler county opposed the bill on the ground (a) that the bill 
was the same in substance as the memorial from Cincinnati college 
which had been rejected by the house, (b) that it would be unjust 
to the people who had located upon and improved the college lands, 

(c) that Cincinnati was an unsuitable place at which to locate an 
institution for the training of young men. Mr. Williams then de- 
fended his bill in a speech which is given in full in the Liberty Hall 
and Cincinnati Gazette for February 20, 1822. His arguments 
were : (a) The university belongs to the Symmes purchase and can 
never be of any advantage where it now stands to the present day 
and generation. Congress to encourage the settlement of the 
Symmes purchase offered certain inducements, among these being 
the grant of a college township which was to be located near the 
center of the tract of land and within which the educational institu- 
tion was to be established. If necessity required the location of the 
college lands without the bounds of the purchase, this did not re- 
quire the location of the college outside the purchase, as is shown 
where schools are in part supported by the income from school sec- 
tions located outside the bounds of the township, (b) Congress 
granted to the Ohio legislature one township in lieu of the township 
already granted and for the same purpose, viz., for the benefit of the 
settlers within the Symmes purchase. The act of the legislature in 
removing the university from Lebanon to Oxford was void because 
it transcended the authorization of Congress and was entirely owing 
to a log-rolling scheme, that grew out of the contest for removing 
the seat of government. The people of the Symmes purchase have 
the same right to the college township that the inhabitants of each 
township have to their school section No. 16. (c) The school at 
Oxford has not succeeded, at the most contained but twenty-two 
boys and cannot assist in the educatioii of the present generation. 

(d) If the citizens of Oxford took their leases on the grounds that the 
college was to be fixed in the township * * * the people of the 
purchase bought their lands under the inducement that they should 
have the benefit of a college located among them. To take the col- 
lege from the settlers on the college lands is not so unjust as to 
withhold it from those to whom it rightfully belongs, as the former 
will be compensated for their financial losses and be provided with 
an academy which will meet their needs for years to come. The dis- 
cussion was continued by Messrs. Anderson, Fitzpatrick, Biggar, 
Harper, Whittlesey, Collins and Shields, and was ended by the pass- 
ing of a motion to strike out the first section of the bill. The feel- 
ing prevailed that due previous notice had not been given of the in- 
troduction of the bill. 


The introduction and discussion of the bill led the friends of 
the university as then located to rally to its support, A public meet- 
ing was held at Oxford, March 23, 1822, when a committee was ap- 
pointed to examine the bill and speech of Mr. Williams and to pub- 
lish a reply to the same, and also an address to the inhabitants of 
the Symmes purchase. A memorial address to the legislature, bear- 
ing date of October 17, 1822, was prepared by the members of the 
university corporation and forwarded to that body. Moreover 
James McBride was elected to a seat in the house of representa- 
tives and prepared the above speech that it might be in readiness 
should the friends of Cincinnati college revive the question of re- 
moving Miami university. This they did not deem wise to do, and 
so the speech was not delivered. It contains the best account of 
the Miami college lands that is extant. 

Grammar School of Miami University. Undaunted by these 
many hindrances, Miami university was steadily, if slowly, evolving 
into a real college. In 1811, the board of trustees of the university 
made an appropriation and ordered that there should be erected on 
the university square in the town of Oxford, a house or building 
for the use of the school. There was erected a hewed log building 
20x30 feet at a cost of $297. In December, 1812, James M. Dor- 
sey, a schoolmaster from Baltimore, opened a select school for the 
benefit of the youth of the college township. Due to the unsettled 
condition of the frontier during the years 1812-15, this school had 
only a limited number of pupils. 

By the fall of 1818, a brick building had been erected which cost 
$6,167. This building served as both recitation hall and dormitory. 
The building above described was remodeled and fitted for the use 
of the principal whose compensation was $500 salary, one-half of 
the tuition of $5 per quarter, and the use of a house and garden free 
of rent. 

The person selected for this position was James Hughes, a 
Presbyterian clergyman who had pursued his literary and theologi- 
cal studies under Rev. Joseph Smith and John McMillan and is 
said to have been the first person to be ordained to the ministerial 
office west of the Alleghenies. 

An account of the opening of this school that appeared in The 
Weekly Recorder of Chillicothe, Ohio, for December 18, 1818, reads 
as follows : 

On the 3rd ult. agreeably to an ordinance of the president and 
trustees, the Miami university was opened for the reception of 
students, under the care of the Rev. James Hughes, who commenced 
teaching on the day following with six students. At this time the 
number increased to 21, who are all studying the Latin language. 
A number more have applied to come in a short time. In the col- 
lege edifice are twelve large rooms, sufficient for the comfortable 
accommodations of 50 students, and materials are prepared for an 
addition of the same size. Boarding may be had convenient to the 
college, at from $1.50 to $2.00 per week. The price of tuition is $5 
per session. 

Mr. Nahum Meyers of the Tribe of Levi, a converted Jew 
lately from Prussia, is at present living with Mr. Hughes, and pro- 


poses to teach the Hebrew language to any who may be disposed 
to attend for that purpose. Hebrew is his native language. 

The attention of the friends of literature and the public in gen- 
eral is invited to this institution. It is expected that it will be a 
place very favorable for learning; though in the midst of a populous 
and very fertile country, yet in a favorable retreat from the tumult 
and various avocations and temptations, so prejudicial to youth, 
which abound in large mercantile towns and cities. The site of the 
university and of the town of Oxford is peculiarly pleasant, being 
on a very elevated tract of land, with a beautiful declivity on its 
borders from every side, affording a very pleasing prospect of the 
adjoining country in every direction. 

Six years were yet to elapse before the college of liberal arts 
was to become operative. 

The same year in which Cincinnati college was founded saw the 
establishment of the medical college of Ohio. The founder of this 
institution was Daniel Drake, who for a time had served as a mem- 
ber of the faculty of the Transylvania Medical college at Lexing- 
ton, Ky, The other members of the faculty were Jesse Smith, pro- 
fessor of surgery; and Elijah Slack, president of Cincinnati college, 
who taught chemistry. The fortunes of this institution are set 
forth by Drake in The Rise and Fall of the Medical College of Ohio. 
This was not only the first medical college in the Miami valley, but 
the first northwest of the Ohio river. 

Another indication of the cultural interest of that area at that 
early time was the establishment at Cincinnati of a school of litera- 
ture and arts. Dr. Drake gives the following account of this so- 

This is an association for literary and scientific improvement, 
composed chiefly of young men who formed themselves into a so- 
ciety in 1813 and elected Josiah Meigs, an accomplished scholar, 
their first president. Their constitution provided for frequent meet- 
ings, at which the exercises are of these kinds : A lecture from the 
president, an essay from one of the members, and a poetical recita- 
tion from another. On the 23rd of November, 1814, the school held 
its first anniversary meeting, at which an oration was delivered by 
appointment. From this discourse, it appears that many interesting 
lectures and essays have been delivered, and that this infant institu- 
tion is probably the germ of a permanent and respectable society. 

While therefore the Miami valley did not at the close of the 
second decade of the 18th century possess a well articulated system 
of public instruction, she at least had a large number of schools, 
certain of which were taught by persons of more than ordinary 
ability, several excellent academies or grammar schools and the 
only college and medical school northwest of the Ohio river that 
were actually operative as such at that time. Moreover a number 
of library associations had been formed to further the educational 
interests of the valley. Among these were the mercantile library 
association of Cincinnati, the Dayton library and the Paddy's Run 
library, which dates from as early as 1817. If the educational situa- 
tion of the valley was at that time not all that could have been 
desired, if some of its school buildings were inferior in quality and 


some of its teachers of mediocre ability, it would appear on the 
whole to have been not without certain effective institutions of learn- 
ing nor without teachers of a high order of intelligence and effi- 
ciency. In view of the interest manifested in educational matters, 
the efforts put forth and the results achieved, it may be questioned 
whether the Miami valley was at all inferior in educational idealism 
to the other cultural areas of Ohio. Indeed it may be questioned 
whether any had, during the same period of time, made as much 
progress as had she. 

Educational Development. As throughout the country in gen- 
eral, so in the Miami valley, the period, 1820 to 1837, was one of 
marked educational development. 

It was during this period that Ohio in common with a number 
of other states, established a state system of public instruction. In 
common with the Ohio company's purchase, the Symmes purchase 
received from the federal government a grant of section 16 of each 
township, the income from which was to be used for the maintenance 
of a school system. Much was hoped for from these grants, but 
little was realized. The leasing of the lands was first tried but was 
found to be unprofitable. Finally in 1827, provision was made 
that they be sold and the receipts loaned to the state to constitute 
a fund on which the state agree to pay 6% per annum into the school 
funds of the state. 

Two years previous to this during the administration of Gov. 
Morrow, one of the distinguished pioneers of the Ohio valley, a 
law was passed making obligatory the levying of a tax for the sup- 
port of Ohio schools. Among the most effective advocates of this 
measure was Mr. Nathan Guilford of Cincinnati, dne of the most 
broadminded and farsighted advocates of education of that period, 
as is evidenced by the following statement from him : "Nothing 
but free schools has ever succeeded in diffusing education among 
the most of the people who cultivate the soil. The system scatters 
schools in every neighborhood, is within the reach of every farmer, 
and freely offers to the poor tenants of every cabin the means of in- 
struction. The yeomanry of every country constitutes its sinew 
and strength, and it is among them that those wholesome, honest, 
and homebred principles are preserved, which constitute the safety 
and honor of a nation." It thus appears that his opinion of the 
value of the elementary schools is not behind that of the leading 
educators of today. 

The effects of this law was shortly to be seen throughout this 
as other sections of the state. Though several provisions for the 
education of poor children had been made by philanthropic citizens of 
Cincinnati, objection had been made to such schools. This arose 
from the heavy tax payers, those interested in private academies, 
and those who objected to sending their children to schools where 
certain of the pupils were charity. 

In 1829, a public school system was organized and the city 
divided into ten districts, each of which was to have a two-room 
schoolhouse. For building and operating these schools, a tax of two 
mills was levied. The salaries provided ranged from $200 to $500, 
the teachers being mostly men. 


Of the state of the Cincinnati public schools in 1837, Atwater 
in his History of the State of Ohio gives us this interesting account : 

At the present time, Cincinnati has within its corporate limits, 
more and better means of affording instruction, than any other place 
in this state. Its medical school may be said to be the only one, in 
the state, of the kind; and if any one seeks to acquire a thorough 
knowledge of the modern languages, Cincinnati possesses the 
amplest means of affording such instruction. 

And if any young man wishes to acquire a knowledge of any 
one of the learned professions, Cincinnati is certainly the best place 
of obtaining it, in the valley of the Mississippi. And if any one 
wishes to learn any mechanical art, Cincinnati is the very place to 
learn it. The field is larger and better cultivated, too, than any 
other, in Ohio, in which the arts grow and flourish. And this will 
necessarily continue to be the best place in the west, for a long 
time, in which to acquire knowledge. Perhaps we might except 
female instruction, to which Columbus, Dayton, Chillicothe, Zanes- 
ville, and Circleville, have paid great attention. 

Public common schools are under the government of trustees 
and visitors, who are Peyton S. Symmes, president ; George Graham, 
jr., Elam P. Langdon, James R. Baldridge, William Wood. 

These visitors examine and employ the teachers, carefully in- 
spect the schools, adopt rules for their government, and finally, do 
every other act proper and necessary to be done, in execution of 
their high trust. Thus far they have acted wisely and efficiently in 
the management of these noble institutions. 

The city council has a board of education, whose business it 
is to raise the funds wherewith to build schoolhouses, pay the 
teachers, and keep the buildings in repair. They have erected ten 
large edifices, at an expense of about one hundred thousand dollars. 
This sum includes the cost of the lots on which these splendid 
buildings are erected. Each of these buildings is divided into four 
rooms, thirty-six feet in breadth by thirty-eight feet in length, two 
in each story, besides the basement rooms. The building is two 
lofty stories in height, above the basement story. In these build- 
ings forty schools are taught, by about eighty instructors. The 
number of schools for males and females is equal, in which, about 
two thousand five hundred children are instructed during the whole 
year, except two vacations of two weeks each. The wages of the 
teachers are seven hundred dollars annually for principals, and 
three hundred for assistant male teachers ; and only two hundred 
and fifty dollars for female principals, and two hundred for assist- 
ant female teachers. All these sums are paid by the city, for the 
instruction of the children who have no parents, or those whose 
parents are poor. 

So much we can say, for the benevolence, wisdom and charity 
of Cincinnati. 

The instructors of these public schools are all well educated. 
The principals of the male schools are graduates of eastern col- 
leges, and the female teachers are educated in the best manner. The 
teachers in their departments are perfect gentlemen and ladies. 
Their constant examples before their pupils, the moral as well as 


literary instruction, which they convey to their schools, are pro- 
ductive of the happiest effects. Pupils are admitted when six years 
old, and they can be instructed until they are fourteen years old, 
and all this instruction costs nothing to them, or their parents and 

Among the teachers in the higher department of females, Mrs. 
Wing and Miss Eustis, are preeminent for their education and polite 
accomplishments. We mean no disparagement to other teachers, 
because they are all good, and deserve higher wages than they now 

The number of scholars in the Woodward college, is nearly two 
hundred. Its income from all sources amounts to four thousand 
two hundred and forty-eight dollars annually. In seven years, the 
funds of this institution will produce from six to eight thousand 
dollars annually. It originated in the enlightened benevolence of 
William Woodward, of Cincinnati. 

His first grant of land for his endowment, was made on the 1st 
of November, 1826, to Samuel Lewis and Osmond Cogswell, per- 
petual trustees. The site of the building was a subsequent dona- 
tion by the same gentleman. It was first chartered as the Wood- 
ward free grammar school. This title was afterwards changed into 
that of the Woodward high school, and with the alteration of the 
name, there was also a change in the character of the institution. 
The course of study was raised in consequence of the establishment 
of common schools. These latter, while they supplied the place, 
filled by the former under its organization, as originally contem- 
plated, seemed to call for an institution of a higher grade. 

As a high school, its course of study has been gradually ex- 
tended till it embraces every subject usually taught in our colleges, 
besides the modern languages and bookkeeping as parts of a mer- 
cantile education. In the winter of 1835-6, the trustees applied to 
the legislature for collegiate powers, which were accordingly granted 
under the title of the Woodward college of Cincinnati. 

Despite certain hindrances due to the inadequacy of the funds 
provided, disputes as to text books, and uncertainties as to the 
relations between principal and teachers and teachers and patrons, 
and frequent changes in the rules, these schools made steady prog- 

Outside of Cincinnati the immediate beneficial effects of this 
law, while discernible, were less marked. In many instances the 
tax levy was inadequate to the maintenance of wholly free schools 
and had to be supplemented by subscriptions or fees on the part 
of those who were able to pay. Thus the amount apportioned the 
Dayton school district in 1829 was but $133. Four years later it 
had increased to $1,865. Even as late as 1841 we find, due to the 
inadequancy of the levy to meet the expenses, the board of managers 
authorized the charging of a fee of fifty cents per quarter to all who 
were able to pay. 

Provision of Better Text Books. We find also that the Ohio 
valley played an important part in the movement for a system of 
text books adapted to the needs of the schools. During the entire 
period little attention had been given to a system of texts. The 


Student used the text that he was able to provide. The New Eng- 
land Primer, Webster's Elements of Useful Knowledge, Webster's 
American Selections, The Columbian Orator, Murray's English 
Grammar, The American Preceptor, Dilworth's Speller, Webster's 
Easy Standard of Pronunciation, Pike's Arithmetic, and The Fed- 
eral Calculator were then used. Sometimes, however, the pupil 
would bring a copy of the Bible or other devotional book that the 
family possessed to serve as a text book in reading. 

One of the most distinct contributions to the cause of better 
text books was that made by Prof. McGuffey of Miami university. 
Dr. A. D. Hepburn, son-in-law of Prof. McGuffey, recently gave 
an interesting account of the McGuffey reader which we cannot do 
better than quote: 

The McGuffey readers and spellers were written and compiled 
in Oxford, and were first published by Smith brothers of Cincinnati, 
about the year 1836. Eminent educators afifirm that these books, 
which gave their author more than national reputation, elevated 
the standard of school publications, and did more to improve the 
methods of elementary education than any books ever published. 

Many people thought it strange that a man who taught the 
advanced courses of which Dr. McGuffey made a specialty, should 
have either time or inclination to compile a series of books, includ- 
ing primers, readers and spellers ; but those who knew the man un- 
derstood his motives. First of all, there was a demand for such a 
series, and then Dr. McGuffey was a great lover of children. Hav- 
ing himself struggled for an elementary education, he sought to 
make smoother the road for future generations. 

It was while a member of Miami's faculty that Dr. McGuffey 
organized a reading class among the children of Oxford, making a 
note of the kind of pieces that interested them, and watching their 
pronunciation of words. He was possessed of an inherent fond- 
ness for, and understanding of children, and being himself a man 
of refined literary tastes, his aim was to cultivate in others a de- 
sire for good literature. Some of the pieces contained in his readers 
he wrote ; others he clipped. In the advanced readers were numer- 
ous extracts from anniversary addresses delivered by men of 
prominence at Miami university commencements. 

The table on which the professor did most of his work in com- 
piling his text books now has a conspicuous place in the Miami 
Alumni library. It is of cherry wood, octagonal in form with a 
drawer in each of its faces, in which he kept the clippings from 
which he compiled his books. The table is so made that it re- 
volves thus enabling him to readily reach any paper or book which 
he might desire. The table was long the property of Dr. Hepburn, 
but on his retiring from active service he gave it to the university. 

Publication of School Books. Another contribution of the 
valley in this same direction was in the development of publishing 
' houses for the production of text books. The publishing of news- 
papers had begun almost with the founding of the settlement. 
There were the Centinel of the Northwest territory 1793-96, Free- 
man's Journal 1796-1800, The Western Spy and Hamilton Gazette 
1800-09. The Whig 1809-10, The Advertiser 1810-11, The Western 


Spy 1810, The Liberty Hall and Cincinnati Mercury 1801, Spirit 
of the West 1814-15, and The Cincinnati Gazette 1815. While 
there was this marked interest in newspaper publication, but 
twelve different books had issued from the Cincinnati printing 
presses, and these were of but moderate size. Paper for these 
as for newspaper work was at first obtained from Pennsylvania 
and later from Kentucky, but was now being supplied by mills 
lately established upon the Little Miami river. After 1815, the book 
publishing business so increased until we find the statement made 
in 1826 that the number of text books printed on Cincinnati presses 
during that year were as follows : 55,000 Spelling Books, 30,000 
Primers, 3,000 American Preceptors, 3,000 Introduction to the Engr 
lish Reader, 3,000 Kirkham's Grammar, 2,000 Murray's Grammar, 
5,000 Table Arithmetics. By 1840, the business had so developed 
that we find the school book advertisements an item in the city di- 
rectory for that year. Thurman and Smith call attention to the 
fact that the Eclectic Series then consisted of McGuifey's Primer, 
Progressive Spelling Book, First, Second, Third and Fourth Readers, 
Ray's Eclectic Arithmetic, Ray's Little Arithmetic, Ray's Rules and 
Tables, Miss Beecher's Moral Instructor, Mansfield's Political 
Grammar, Smith's Productive Grammar, and Mason's Young 
Minstrel. The great popularity of this series is evidenced by the 
statement, "that 500,000 of the Eclectic School Books have been 
published within the short time they have been before the public," 
and that the publishers having removed to new buildings and en- 
larged their manufacturing plant "will make it their special aim to 
keep pace with the constantly increasing demand." Ephraim Mor- 
gan & Co. advertise Nos. 1, 2 and 3 of the New American Reader, 
the New American Primer, Talbott's Arithmetic, Kirkham's Gram- 
mar, Murray's Introduction to the English Reader, Hale's Premium 
History of the United States, the Elementary Spelling Book, and 
Walker's Dictionary. They exploit their series of readers as having 
been adopted by the board of trustees and visitors of the common 
schools of Cincinnati to be used in said schools, and introduced into 
a great number of schools in the western and southern states. 
George Conclin calls attention to Hall's Western Reader, Webster's 
Elementary Reader and Webster's Primary Reader, Ely and Strong 
note that they publish Emerson's New National Spelling Book, 
Emerson's First, Second, Third and Fourth Class Readers, Russell's 
Series of Histories, Introduction to Murray's English Reader, Mur- 
ray's English Reader, Ruter's Western Arithmetic, the New Eng- 
land Primer, the American ^'rimer, the Small American Primer, 
and the Western Spelling Book. These books, they declare, are 
the best series of school books ever published in the west and unsur- 
passed by any issued east of the mountains. They are extensively 
used in our common schools — and the best teachers in the west 
give them preference over all others now in use. 

A further evidence of the educational interest of the period was 
the various educational experiments that were tried out during the 

Educational Experiments. Mention has already been made of 
the introduction of a modified form of the Lancastrian system into 


the schools of Cincinnati in 1815 and into those of Dayton in 1820. 
This system did not meet the expectations of its promoters. How- 
ever, that the people of this area were sufficiently open minded to 
attempt a scheme that promised educational betterment, is evidence 
of their interest in the subject. 

In 1828, on the suggestion of Dr. John H. Craig, steps were 
taken to organize at Cincinnati, the Ohio Mechanics' institute. The 
next legislature granted a charter on February 20, 1829, to the asso- 
ciation, which had for its object the advancing of the best interests 
of the mechanics, manufacturers, and art designers by the more 
general diffusion of useful knowledge in those important classes of 
the community. Of this institution Atwater has the following to 

During the three last years, three lectures in each week have 
been delivered in the lecture room of the institute. The library 
consists of about fifteen hundred volumes of well selected books, 
which have been presented to the institution by individuals. The 
members of the institute contribute, each, annually, three dollars. 
The society has an annual fair, for the exhibition of such articles as 
our mechanics and manufacturers may feel disposed to exhibit. The 
fair held in May, 1838, at the bazaar, was attended by all the intelli- 
gent citizens of Cincinnati. The articles exhibited did honor to the 
ingenuity and skill of those who produced them. We saw, and felt 
proud of the producers and their productions. This institution de- 
serves the patronage of the whole people and we hope will receive it. 
The classes in the institute are established by voluntary association 
of young men, who form their own by-laws and adopt a course of 
mutual instruction ; receiving aid from professional teachers, many 
of whom have been very zealous in promoting the objects of the 
institution. During the summer seasons, courses of lectures in 
natural philosophy are delivered in the institute to young ladies. 

Another writes : 

An institution of the cast and purpose of the institute deserves 
attention and support for many reasons, and one important one 
among these is the influence which it will exert in the cause of 
education, by diffusing a taste for manly and scientific knowledge, 
in opposition to that propagated by whining superficialism which 
adapts itself to the caprices and feelings of those who see no differ- 
ence between things useful and excellent, and those useless and 

The institute, despite many difficulties that arose, has continued 
to contribute to this end and is today in a flourishing state. 

In 1833 a manual labor institution was founded in Dayton and 
placed under the supervision of Prof. Milo G. Williams. This 
scheme of education had been successfully operated in Europe and 
shortly before this had begun to attract the attention of educators 
in this country, some of the best of whom regarded the plan with 
favor. A number of experiments were made particularly in the west. 
These in general did not prove successful and the operation of such 
schools was for the most part discontinued as not being well adapted 
to our educational needs in this country. Such was the fate of the 
Dayton experiment, which was discontinued after two years of trial. 


A movement somewhat related to this was the establishment of 
the Farmers' college, which was attended with greater success, 
though in the end itself a failure. 

In the Literary Register for 1829 there appeared an advertise- 
ment of Miami university. One of the features set forth therein 
was the Farmers' college, in which it was proposed to afford the 
young man who proposed to be a farmer or merchant, a course of 
instruction as well adapted to his needs as was the regular course 
to the needs of those entering upon a professional career. The 
financial limitations do not appear to have admitted of the execu- 
tion of this idea. Later, however, it found expression in an institu- 
tion with which Dr. Bishop was connected. In 1833, Freeman E. 
Gary founded the Pleasant Hill academy at a point about six miles 
north of Cincinnati. His school soon proved to be very popular 
and won a reputation as being the best academy in the west. He 
was fortunate in securing able instructors, among whom were Dr. 
Robert H. Bishop and Prof. John W. Scott, who had recently severed 
their connection with Miami university. As stated by its founder, 
the great and leading object had in view from the commencement 
of this institution has been ultimately to give an extensive and 
thorough course of scientific instruction. 

In 1846, he and his associates chartered the Farmers' college of 
Hamilton county and the same year the cornerstone of the new 
college edifice was laid with addresses by Profs. Bishop and Scott. 
Both of these speakers laid emphasis on the dignity of labor and the 
importance of a more general distribution of education in order to 
raise up another and better, because a more educated and intelligent 
kind of agriculturists, mechanics, and business men, than the present 
or any other generation. 

It was the fundamental idea of the prime mover of this enter- 
prise. President Gary, that every man had a special right to that 
kind of education which would be of greatest value to him in the 
prosecution of useful industry. For a time the operations of this 
school were attended with great prosperity, but during the Givil 
war it entered upon a decline from which it has never been able to 
recover. Today the buildings and grounds are the property of the 
Ohio Military institute. 

One of the characteristic developments of this period was the 
founding of the Western Literary Institute and Gollege of Profes- 
sional Teachers, which had for its object the introduction of certain 
improvements in the methods of instruction. Gorrespondence was 
opened by the members with all similar associations and with such 
individuals of either sex as evinced an interest in or desire to en- 
courage so important an undertaking. A contemporary thus de- 
scribes the founding and purposes of this organization : 

A few years ago the teachers of Gincinnati organized a society 
for mutual improvements. Its first anniversary was celebrated on 
the 20th of June, 1831, at which time the Rev. R. H. Bishop, D. D., 
president of the Miami university, delivered an excellent address on 
the importance of demanding and encouraging faithful and well 
qualified teachers. This association, however, not extending beyond 
the boundaries of the city, was necessarily restricted in its opera- 


tions, and its benevolent designs even there were almost entirely 
paralyzed by jealousies, local prejudices and conflicting interests. 
Under these discouragements some of its founders were for aban- 
doning the objects altogether, believing it could never be rendered 
productive of any valuable results. But Mr. Albert Pickett, sr., a 
veteran in the profession of teaching, unwilling to abandon his 
object, devised a plan which would not only sustain the sinking 
cause but greatly augment its usefulness and respectability. 

He very wisely concluded that if a literary institution were 
formed which should be composed of all the instructors of youth 
and other friends of education in the west, who should annually 
meet in convention, all the members would be apt to unite in the 
promotion of the great object in view, while all local schemes and 
selfish policy would be rendered powerless or be forgotten. This 
idea he communicated to some of his friends, and as it received their 
hearty approval, circulars of invitation were immediately sent, as far 
as information could be obtained, to all engaged in teaching, whether 
in colleges, academies or schools, to meet in Cincinnati on Wednes- 
day, October 3, 1832, at which time a respectable number convened. 
A resolution was passed for the establishment of the present college. 
A constitution was prepared and unanimously adopted. 

Thus commenced the western college of professional teachers, 
the most popular and useful literary institution in the western coun- 
try, if not in the Union, and which has already accomplished won- 
ders in the advancement of the cause of general education in the 

Should this institution continue to flourish, the advantages to 
be derived from it will at some future day be great. It brings 
together the presidents and professors of our colleges and universi- 
ties and the teachers of academies and primary schools. They form 
a mutual acquaintance and learn to respect each other's character, 
merit and usefulness. And the time will come when there will 
exist between them a mutual dependence which will be productive of 
mutual benefits. The colleges and universities will then furnish efifi- 
cient teachers for the schools and academies, and they in return, 
when efficiently taught, will furnish a great number of pupils for 
the colleges and universities. In consequence of our young men 
being early initiated and established in regular habits of study and 
in the love of useful knowledge, where there is now one pupil who 
wishes for the advantages of a collegiate education, there will then 
be many. 

In the development of educational periodicals within the state, 
the Miami valley appears to have assumed the lead. The earliest 
publication of this class was the Literary Register, edited by the 
professors of Miami university. Tv/enty-six numbers were issued 
running from June 2nd to December 8th, 1828, when the publica- 
tion was taken over by C. A. Ward and W. W. Bishop who pro- 
posed to continue the paper along the same general lines. 

In July, 1831, the Academic Pioneer was issued at Cincinnati 
containing the proceedings and addresses of the Western Academic 
institute and board of education at its meeting held June 20th of 
that year. A second number appeared in December, 1832, contain- 


ing the proceedings of the meeting held that year. In January, 1837, 
the Universal Educator made its appearance at Cincinnati. How 
long it continued does not appear. 

The Western Academician and Journal of Education and 
Science edited by John W. Pickettt, A. M., made its appearance at 
Cincinnati in March, 1837. It was made the organ of the college 
of Professional Teachers. The enterprise lived but a year but that 
was long enough for it to publish a number of valuable articles, many 
of which were written by men from the Miami valley area. In 
May, 1837, the Ohio Common School Director was issued at Co- 
lumbus, being edited by Samuel Lewis, a Miami valley man, who 
had just been made state superintendent of schools. As she pio- 
neered in the field of educational literature, so has she maintained an 
important position throughout the later years. 

The College o£ Liberal Arts of Miami University. During the 
period we are now considering, Miami university rose to the rank 
of a university and assumed an important place among the educa- 
tional institutions of the west. In 1824 the central portion of the 
present main building was so nearly completed and the income from 
the college township now amounting to $4,503.07^^, it was deter- 
mined to raise the institution, which had existed as a select school 
1812-18, and as a grammar school 1818-24, to the rank of a college. 
To shape the policies of the young institution. Prof. Bishop of 
Transylvania university was chosen. For eighteen years he had 
served with distinction in that institution and had been considered 
as the logical man for its presidency in 1818. It was his fortune to 
serve at Transylvania when that was one of the leading universities 
of the country. 

Coming to Miami university at the beginning of the school in 
November, 1824, Dr. Bishop was inaugurated as president of the 

One of President Bishop's associates in launching this educa- 
tional venture was William Sparrow, of Charleston, Miss., who had 
studied at Trinity college, Dublin, and Columbia university, and who 
later was professor at Kenyon for sixteen years, and at the Episco- 
pal Theological seminary at Alexandria from 1841 to 1874. The 
other was John E. Annan, a graduate of Dickinson college, who, 
after three years of service as professor of mathematics and science, 
resigned to complete his theological studies at Princeton seminary. 
On the resignation of Prof. Sparrow in 1825, his place was taken by 
William H. McGuffey of text book fame. 

President Bishop's administration of seventeen years, though 
not without imperfections, was on the whole judicious, beneficent, 
and successful. The college township had been transformed into a 
thriving farming community, yielding an annual income to the 
university of about $5,500, the largest permanent income of any 
college in America. The unpretentious schoolhouse first erected 
on the campus had given place to four permanent brick structures, 
three of which still render excellent service. The select school had 
evolved into a real college with a faculty of six full professors, sev- 
eral of whom were men of national reputation, and a student body 


of one hundred and sixty-four young men drawn from ten different 
states. From her walls had gone forth three hundred and two grad- 
uates, of whom one hundred and eleven entered the ministry and 
ninety-three studied law. Forty sought to further the cause of edu- 
cation, either as principals of academies or as professors in col- 
leges, seven rising to the position of college presidents. Twenty- 
three served in their state legislature, five sat in the gubernatorial 
chair, thirteen were elected to seats in congress, and five rose to 
a distinguished rank in the army. Five were sent by the church 
as missionaries to heathen lands, while four were sent by our gov- 
ernment on missions to foreign countries. With such a product, is 
it surprising that Miami university was speedily recognized as en- 
titled to a place in the front rank of the educational institutions of 
our country? Even a Cincinnati writer, while lamenting the failure 
of local efforts to establish a successful college, could say of her, 
"It is gratifying that our citizens who have sons to educate, can 
avail themselves of the advantages of Miami university, which is 
located in the vicinity of our city." 

Rise of Church Colleges. While the state university was thus 
progressing largely under Presbyterian control, other denominations 
whose needs were not served thereby were taking steps to found 
individualistic institutions. 

Until after 1830 the Roman Catholics comprised a small and 
uninfluential minority of the population of the Miami valley. A 
survey of the churches established in this area prior to 1815 does 
not disclose a single one of that faith. This statement also applies 
to the Jews and Episcopalians. However, about 1820, churches 
of the Catholic faith began to be established and in 1831 Bishop 
Fenwich undertook the establishment of a literary institute, which 
took the name of The Athenaeum. From 1831 to 1840 the school 
was under the care of the diocesan clergy. Though their efforts were 
attended with much success the growing needs of the work led 
Bishop Parcell to commit it to the care of the Jesuit order. Under 
the administration of this body the institution has been characterized 
by a steady growth until the old quarters were found to be inade- 
quate and a new location was secured in Avondale where it now 
operates under much more favorable conditions. The ability and 
reputation of the Jesuits in the field of education has given to this 
school a distinguished place among the educational institutions of 
southwestern Ohio. 

Among the other institutions of higher education in the Miami 
valley, St. Joseph's college at Cincinnati, founded in 1871 by mem- 
bers of the congregation of the Holy Cross, and St. Mary's at Day- 
ton established under the direction of the Society of Mary, occupy 
a distinctive position. 

In 1844 the first steps toward the establishment of an institu- 
tion that would have as its distinctive purpose the education of 
colored youth was taken by the African Methodist Episcopal church. 
At that time a committee was appointed to select a site for a sem- 
inary of learning. The institution known as Union seminary was 
located twelve miles west of Columbus and combined manual labor 
with literary instruction. 


In 1853, a further step was taken by the Cincinnati conference 
of the Methodist Episcopal church when a committee recommended 
the establishment of a Hterary institution of higher order for the 
colored people generally. In 1856, Tawawa Springs, a summer re- 
sort of that day, located near Xenia, was secured as a location for 
the institution. To the promotion of this enterprise the Methodist 
Episcopal and the African Methodist Episcopal conferences of Ohio 
joined hands. 

In 1889 the state came to the assistance of the school by the 
establishment of a normal and industrial department which it reor- 
ganized in 1896 and placed under a separate board of nine trustees 
and granted it thirty-five ten thousandths of a mill of the grand tax 

This institution now has a plant of nine school buildings and 
eight cottages and 571 students from all over the United States and 
Canada, South America, Africa, the Bermuda Islands, the Bahamas 
and the West Indies. 

In 1845 the Evangelical Lutheran synod inaugurated a move- 
ment toward the establishment and maintenance of a literary and 
theological institution of high grade in the Miami valley. The ef- 
fort culminated in the founding at Springfield, Ohio, of Wittenberg 
college an institution which by reason of the broad and fundamental 
Christian principles and the high educational standards which it 
has maintained has rendered a large service to society. 

Urbana university was founded in 1850 to provide for the edu- 
cation of youth in all the branches of academic, scientific and ex- 
egetic instruction, in the light of the philosophy of the church of 
New Jerusalem. In view of the distinctive ideas held by those of 
that cult as to the relation of spirit and matter, this school, while 
supplying a denominational want, has not had a general appeal to 
the youth of this section and the attendance has been quite limited. 

On December 2, 1850, steps were taken by that denomination 
commonly known as Christian, which resulted in the founding of 
Antioch college at Yellow Springs university. Provision was made 
for a building fund of $100,000. Twenty acres of land and $20,- 
000 in money was given by William Mills and $100,000 by other 
citizens of Yellow Springs to promote the enterprise. Horace Mann, 
the distinguished educator, was the first president. The young in- 
stitution soon found itself on the rocks due to bad financial admin- 
istration, all the property of the college was sold under foreclosure 
proceedings to a new corporation for the sum of $40,000. The con- 
trol of the institution now passed under the control of the Unitarian 
denomination of Christians greatly to its prejudice in the minds of 
many of its former friends. In 1882 the administration of the col- 
lege passed to the Christian educational society. 

Although the Quakers entered the Miami valley in large num- 
bers very early in the 19th century, it was not until 1870 that they 
took steps toward the establishment of an institution of higher learn- 
ing. In that year Wilmington college was founded by the Miami 
center and Fairfield Quarterly Meetings of Friends. In 1914 the 
control of the college was vested in the Wilmington Yearly Meet- 
ing, and its management vested in a board of nine trustees. 


Theological Schools. A fact which forcibly strikes the student 
of the educational history of the Miami valley is the number of theo- 
logical seminaries located within its bounds. 

In 1829, Miami university announced the establishment of a 
theological department. Little is known of this enterprise other than 
that it is described as a three years' course embracing reading the 
scriptures in the original Hebrew and Greek, a short mathematical 
course, history, rhetoric and natural and moral philosophy. Two 
things that transpired in the educational world at about that date 
may have served to crowd this enterprise into obscurity. 

One was the founding in 1829 of Lane Theological seminary on 
a grant of money by two brothers, New Orleans merchants, whose 
name was given to the institution, and of approximately 100 acres 
of land located on Walnut Hills, Cincinnati, given by the descend- 
ants of James Kemper, the pioneer Presbyterian minister of the 
Miami valley, on which was already located a well finished academy 
with a dwelling house by it. In 1832 the theological department 
was organized with Dr. Lyman Beecher at its head. Dr. Beecher 
expressed the spirit of those who were its promoters when he said 
to plant Christianity in the west is as grand an undertaking as it was 
to plant it in the Roman Empire, with unspeakably greater perma- 
nence of power. This institution has developed with the years and 
is today an important part of the Presbyterian educational system. 

Another thing that affected the status of theological instruction 
at Miami university was the establishment at Oxford in 1837, by 
the Associate Reformed Presbyterian church, of the Theological 
seminary under the direction of Rev. Joseph Claybaugh, D. D. The 
work of this institution was so closely related to that of the univer- 
sity that from 1850-55 it was affiliated with the university and its 
president made a member of the Miami faculty. Upon the union of 
the Associate and Associate Reformed Presbyterian churches to 
form the United Presbyterian church, the seminary was moved in 
1857 to Monmouth, and in 1874, when it was consolidated with the 
Xenia Theological seminary. 

This latter institution was the outgrowth of one of the earliest 
attempts made in the United States to found an institution devoted 
exclusively to theological instruction. In 1794 the Rev. John An- 
derson, D. D., was brought over from Scotland by the Associate 
Presbyterian church, and under his direction an institution for im- 
parting theological instruction was founded at Service in western 
Pennsylvania. In 1830 the institution was transferred to Canons- 
burgh, Pa., where it continued in operation until 1855, when it was 
relocated at Xenia, Ohio, where it continues in operation. 

Other theological seminaries located within the valley are the 
following: Hamma Divinity school of Wittenberg college, founded 
in 1844 ; the Central Theological school of the Reformed church in 
the United States (1848) at Dayton; Bonebrake Theological semi- 
nary (1871) of the United Brethren church; Hebrew Union college 
(1875) ; Payne Theological seminary of Wilberforce university, 1892. 

Another educational development of the early days was the 
founding in 1833 of the Law school of Cincinnati college by a group 
of Cincinnati lawyers who had received their instruction in the Dane 


Law school at Cambridge. While not so old as the Law college of 
Transylvania university, it is the oldest law college west of the 
Allegheny mountains that is now in operation. 

In 1835 it was incorporated with the Cincinnati college, from 
which time it has been known as the law school of Cincinnati col- 
lege and took up its location in the college buildings located at the 
corner of Fourth and Walnut streets. Upon the suspension of the 
Cincinnati college, the law school fell heir to its property, which 
in time became of such value that today it affords the law school 
a very handsome income. 

Attention has already been called to the genesis of medical edu- 
cation in the valley. This early beginning has made a consistent 
growth, the history of which has been so admirably treated by Dr. 
Otto Juettner in his paper on The Rise of the Medical Colleges, pub- 
lished in the Ohio Archaeological and Historical Society's Publica- 
tions for 1913, that the student of this subject is referred to that 
article for further information. 

Education of Women. One marked development of this period 
was along the line of the education of women. A beginning had 
been made along this line prior to 1820. After that date the move- 
ment gained in impetus and a number of such schools were estab- 
lished throughout the valley, at least one of which has persisted to 
the present time. Ex-President Sherzer of Oxford college has so 
well described this movement that we will use her language. 

In 1823 John Locke, M. D., established the Cincinnati Female 
academy on Walnut street, between Third and Fourth streets. 
There were teachers in the French language, music, penmanship, 
and needlework, and an assistant ih the preparatory department. 
Twelve gentlemen formed a board of visitors who examined the 
pupils and superintended the academy. The price of tuition, exclu- 
sive of music and the French language, was from $4 to $10 a quarter. 
In August of each year there was a public examination at which 
medals and honorary degrees of the academy were awarded. Fol- 
lowing the annual examination there was a vacation of four weeks. 
The academy possessed competent apparatus for illustrations in 
chemistry, natural philosophy, astronomy, and for teaching the 
simple elements of the different branches to the younger pupils. 
The demonstrative method of teaching was employed, by which a 
knowledge of things instead of words alone was imparted. In 
fact, it was Pestalozzi's method of instruction. Patrons were care- 
fully informed that the idea entertained by some persons that the 
system of Pestalozzi tends to infidelity was unfounded. 

About four years were required to pass through the prescribed 
course of study in order to obtain the honorary degree of the acad- 
emy. Mrs. Frances Trollope, who in 1828 visited Cincinnati, in 
her book on Domestic Manners of Americans, speaks with surprise 
of an exhibition where the higher branches of science were among 
the studies * * * and where one lovely girl of sixteen took her 
degree in mathematics and another was examined in moral 

In 1823 the Cincinnati Female college or school, kept by Albert 
and John W. Pickett, from New York state, seems to have been 


especially popular. Their method of teaching- was the analytic or 
inductive. Their course of study embraced the ordinary branches 
taught in a female academy, including the Latin, Greek, and French 
languages, music and drawing. The school occupied a suite of 
rooms in the south wing of the Cincinnati college edifice. Flint's 
Western Monthly Review of April, 1830, gives an account of the 
commencement exercises, when eleven gold medals were distributed 
for proficiency in Latin, Greek, French, mathematics, music and 

I have in my possession a letter written by one of the pupils 
of Mr. Pickett's school, dated September 29, 1837. This quaint 
epistle gives such a vivid description of the college life of a girl in 
those early days that it is here inserted : 

Cincinnati, September 29, Friday afternoon, 1837. 
Dear Lizzy : 

As I have finished my copy, and as it is some time until we are 
called up with our writing, I will commence a letter to you. I am 
sitting in the third story of Pickett's Female institution, next Mary 
Starbuck, amidst a number of girls who were all entire strangers to 
me two weeks ago, but Harriet Haven and Adelia Goshorn. I am 
pleased quite beyond my expectation, with my school, and my 
schoolmates, and my new home, and everything else in the city, but 
I must confess I was very homesick the first several days that I 
attended school, in consequence of seeing none but strange faces, 
and Mr. Pickett, my teacher, was strange to me, and the rules of the 
school were so new and very different from Miss Havens ; but now 
as I am acquainted with all the young ladies in the senior depart- 
ment I am very happy in my new situation. I will now tell you 
about our journey down here. Father and I started from Hamilton 
at 5 o'clock Tuesday, September 12, in the packet Clarion. The 
ladies' cabin was very crowded. Mrs. Campbell was also going 
down. We took tea at 8 o'clock on the boat. I sat up all night with 
some of the ladies, among whom was a Mrs. Hunt, newly married 
lady, and her husband from Connecticut, with whom I became ac- 
quainted. She pleased me very much by telling me of her travels 
over the United States ; they were very informing and interesting to 
me. We arrived at Cincinnati very early in the morning, father and 
I left the boat and went to Carters ; that afternoon we visited the 
different schools accompanied by Mr. Barnes. We were pleased 
with them all, but more with Picketts. On Friday evening father 
left me for Hamilton. I felt I can't tell how at being left alone 
twenty-five miles from my nearest and dearest relatives. I am 
boarding at Dr. McGuire's on George street, a private family. They 
have but one child, and that a little boy. Mrs. McGuire was for- 
merly Louisa Walden, the lady who painted that beautiful geranium 
ill Georgetta Haven's album ; she is a graduate of Dr. Lockes. Her 
sister Elizabeth is here spending some time with her; she is a young 
lady of my age and very mild and pleasant, we have fine times to- 
gether. Next week we have no school on account of the convention 
of teachers, which will be very great; gentlemen from all parts of 


the Union are coming to it, some have already arrived. Our school 
was this morning visited by a Mr, Scott of Tennessee, one of the 
members. I promised myself a great deal of pleasure in expecta- 
tion of some of the girls coming to the convention, but I am afraid 
I shall be disappointed, for Mr. McGuire speaks of taking us all to 
Perrinsville, a village about twenty miles below Cincinnati to spend 
the week, I attended the theater one evening last week ; the per- 
formance was the "Robber's Wife" and "Soldier's Daughter." Mrs, 
Shaw is the only theatrical star in the city, and she will leave in a 
few days, but the whole Ravel family will be here in a week or two, 
which consists of eighteen persons, the great French dancers. They 
will draw full houses. The new theater is situated on Sycamore 
street. It is very richly decorated with chandeliers and paintings 
and curtains, part of which are white satin. 

Last Sunday I was out all afternoon in a gig riding with a 
friend. We went eight miles below Cincinnati, past the Hunting 
park. We passed some of the most splendid country seats, 

I believe I have told you all I know of any consequence, and 
school is very near out, so I must finish as soon as possible. Reply 
soon. Direct your letter to me in care of Dr, T, McGuire, Cincin- 
nati ; it is immaterial about the street. Give my love to all my 
acquaintances, reserving a large share for yourself. Answer this by 
a long letter, 

I am your loving friend, 

Amelia C, Hittell. 

According to Drake and Mansfield, the oldest female boarding 
school in Cincinnati was kept by the Misses Bailey, "women well 
qualified and of high respectability," assisted by Mr, F. Eckstein, 
It was located on Broadway between Market and Columbia streets. 
The date of its founding is unknown. All the elementary, as well as 
the higher branches of female education, including the French lan- 
guage, music, painting, and drawing, were taught in this institution. 

There was also a school kept by Mrs. Ryland, an English woman 
of much culture. In 1833 Mrs. Caroline Lee Heintz, the celebrated 
novelist, together with her husband, a cultured Frenchman, had a 
popular school for a short time. In the same year is mentioned one 
on the site of St. John's hospital, kept by Miss Catherine Beecher 
and her sister, Harriet. But Harriet soon married Prof. Stowe and 
Catherine became a missionary for female education in the west. 
Miss Mary Duton, as assistant, then took charge, but after a time 
she gave up and went to New Hampshire, where she maintained a 
flourishing school for many years. 

In Oxford, Ohio, in response to a demand from the faculty of 
Miami university that their daughters might have an opportunity of 
higher education, such as their sons were receiving in the Miami 
university, there was opened a school for girls in 1830, Miss 
Bethania Crocker, the daughter of a Congregational clergyman of 
Massachusetts, was put in charge. 

This young girl, although but sixteen years of age, had been 
given a thorough education by her father, including Greek, Latin 


and Hebrew. She was aided in her work by the counsel of Presi- 
dent Bishop of Miami university, and Profs. McGuffey and John 
Winfield Scott. After three or four years this talented young 
woman married the Rev. George Bishop, son of President R. H. 
Bishop of Miami university. The Misses Smith and Clark from 
the east then continued the school, one of these women being the 
sister-in-law of Henry Ward Beecher. They soon were married and 
gave place to other principals, among them the Misses Lucy and 
Ann North, all of whom married professors from Miami, or clergy- 

February 27, 1839, the school was chartered as the Oxford 
Female academy by a special act of the legislature, for a period of 
thirty years, the incorporators being John W. Scott, William 
Graham, James E. Hughes, William W. Robertson, Herman B. 
Mayo, George G. White, and James Leach, and the capital stock was 
limited to $10,000. The corporate concerns of the said academy 
were to be managed by a board of seven trustees, who were to be 
elected annually by the stockholders. This school formed the nu- 
cleus of the Oxford college for women, at the present time a pros- 
perous standard college, the oldest Protestant school for women in 
the United States conferring the B. A. degree. 

Only one catalogue of those early days is in existence — a cata- 
logue of the year 1838-9, in the possession of Mrs. DeNise (Mary 
E. Schenck of Franklin, Ohio, of the class of 1839), now of Burling- 
ton, Iowa, the oldest living graduate of the institution. The teachers 
at the time were Miss Ann L. North, principal; Miss Marion Grume, 
assistant; Miss Sarah E. Werz, instructor in vocal music, and Mrs. 
M. N. Scott, instructor in instrumental music. There were fifty- 
four pupils in attendance, the roll including Caroline L. Scott, who 
was to become the wife of President Benjamin Harrison. The 
academy was divided into two departments, each department divided 
into two classes. In the first department, first class, were taught 
reading, writing, spelling, Ray's Eclectic Arithmetic, First Lessons 
of Philosophy for Children, Parley's History of Geology and History 
of Animals, First Book of History; tuition per quarter, $3.00. In 
the second class were, Goldsmith's History of Greece and Rome, 
Smith's Grammar, Colburn's Mental Arithmetic, Goodrich's History 
of the United States, Malt Brun's Geography, Human Physiology, 
Davies' Arithmetic, and Comstock's Natural Philosophy, com- 
menced; tuition per quarter, $3.75. The junior class (second de- 
partment) studied Davies' Arithmetic and Comstock's Natural Phi- 
losophy (continued), Kirkham's Grammar, Whelpley's Compend of 
Ancient and Modern History, Watts On the Mind, Colburn's Al- 
gebra, Mrs. Lincoln's Botany, Paley's Natural Theology, Blair's 
Lectures on Rhetoric, Jones' Chemistry, geography of the heavens, 
geology, Legendre's Geometry (commenced) ; tuition per quarter, 
$5.00. In the senior class the subjects were Legendre's Geometry 
(continued), Hedge's Logic, Paley's Evidences of Christianity, New- 
man's Political Economy, Karnes' Criticism, mental philosophy, 
Butler's Analogy; Wayland's Moral Philosophy, and Davies' Al- 
gebra. For instruction in the French language, drawing, painting, 
and instrumental music, additional charge was made. The daily 


Study of the Holy Scriptures, writing and vocal music were con- 
tinued through the whole course. A weekly composition was re- 
quired of every pupil, to be read and carefully criticised. A paper, 
edited and furnished with original pieces by the young ladies, af- 
forded an advantage to those who wished to improve their talent of 
writing. Every scholar, on her entrance into school, was examined 
in the fundamental branches, such as spelling, reading, etc., and if 
found deficient, was expected to devote some time to their acquisi- 
tion and, if possible, to become well-versed in them, as a thorough 
acquaintance with the elementary studies is indispensable to a cor- 
rect education. Particular care was taken to have the young ladies 
thorough in all they studied, and no one was permitted to pursue 
such a variety of branches at one time as to dissipate and weaken 
rather than strengthen the intellectual faculties. 

The year is divided into two terms and vacations. The winter 
term commences the first Monday of October and closes the first 
Wednesday of March. It is succeeded by a vacation of two weeks. 
The summer term commences the third Wednesday of March and 
closes the third Wednesday of August. It is succeeded by a vaca- 
tion of about six weeks. Those who pass a thorough examination 
in the preparatory studies will be admitted into the junior class. 
Those who pass a similar examination in the elementary branches 
and those of the junior class may be admitted into the senior class. 
Those who, in addition, are well acquainted with the studies of the 
senior class, will, at the close, receive a testimonial of having com- 
pleted with honor the course of study in this institution. Pupils 
of the academy are favored gratuitously with a course of weekly 
lectures in natural science, with an extensive apparatus and means 
of illustration, by Prof. Scott of Miami university. 

Recently it was the privilege of the writer to spend a few hours 
with Mrs. DeNise of Burlington, Iowa. Although in her ninetieth 
year, she has full possession of all her faculties and converses about 
her school days in Oxford with the vivacity of a young woman. 
With two other prospective pupils, she drove to Oxford from Frank- 
lin, a distance of twenty-eight miles, in a private conveyance. With 
several of her classmates she lived in the home of Mr. Harry Lewis, 
one of the family to which the husband of Mrs. Phillip Moore 
belongs. The pupils from a distance were thus taken care of in the 
homes of the people of Oxford, and formed the first cottage system, 
which has had in recent years its fullest development at Smith col- 
lege. She described the school room vividly — a long, rectangular 
room, with a platform at one end, on which sat the presiding teacher. 
Benches, ranged around the walls, were occupied by the students 
during the day. The class reciting was summoned to the seats im- 
mediately in front of the instructor. The curriculum was the one 
above described. 

Another school for girls founded during this early period was 
the Hamilton & Rossville Female academy founded by Hon. John 
Wood and others, in 1832. A fund of $2,500 was raised, a building 
erected and a Miss Murial Drummond elected principal. She was 
later superseded by Miss Georgetta Hahn, a graduate of Dr. Locke's 
school at Cincinnati. So popular was this school that the attend- 


ance soon increased until in 1836 it numbered 127 pupils. Later 
the school declined and in 1856 the property was sold. 

The Western college is the outgrowth of the Mount Holyoke 
idea transplanted to Ohio valley soil. It was the thought of its 
promoters to make possible for women that higher education which 
could be had only when established on the same basis as men's 
colleges. With this in view, the Western Female seminary was 
founded at Oxford in 1855. It announced its aim as follows, to give 
young women the best education that the times afforded, at the 
lowest possible cost and under distinctly Christian influences. 

With the development of educational ideals, the Western kept 
progress and in 1901, as expressive of her new character, changed 
her name to the Western College for Women. She is one of the 
very best colleges of her type to be found to the westward of the 
Allegheny mountains. 

European Influences on Education. One fact that strikes the 
student of the educational development was the attention given at 
an early date to the study of the foreign languages, if we may credit 
an advertisement inserted in the Western Spy for September 10, 
1799. Francis Menessier conducted a French class at his coffee 
house at the foot of Main street shortly after that date. In 1826, 
French was being taught in the Cincinnati Female college, the 
Female Boarding school and in the Cincinnati Female school. 

The Miami university catalogue for 1833 says "French, Spanish, 
German, and Italian are regularly taught and two of them at least 
must be studied to obtain a diploma." These early attempts, how- 
ever, do not appear to have been attended with great success. At 
Miami in 1835 the attempt was discontinued as "a natural and moral 
impossibility" to teach modern languages successfully to college 
classes, and was not again seriously attempted until 1850. 

The counterpart of this attempt to teach American youth the 
modern European languages was the movement to provide instruc- 
tion in English for the children of non-English speaking immigrants. 
Expression of interest along this line was the formation prior to 
1838 of the Immigrants' Friend society. The object of this organi- 
zation was "to educate the children of foreigners in the English 
language ; to instruct them in the Scriptures, and the nature of our 
free institutions." At that time they had one school in Cincinnati 
with 200 pupils in daily attendance. Another had been recently 
established at Louisville and still a third at New Albany. The 
importance of this work was recognized by Nathan Guilford, who, 
in his report of 1852, says : "We must educate them all ! Universal 
suffrage and universal intelligence must go together. The state 
must provide the means of a good education freely to all. She must 
plant and liberally support public schools in every neighborhood, 
where the rising generations of all classes, without distinction of 
sex, rank, or nativity, may freely receive such mental and moral 
training as shall enable every individual to comprehend the genius 
of the institutions under which he lives ; clearly to understand his 
rights and duties ; to form judicious opinions of the measures of 
administration; to distinguish the true from the counterfeit; to 
despise the demagogue; and to honor the true patriot. 



"The children of our foreign population must, through the in- 
fluence of these institutions, become Americanized, by mingling in 
early life with our native youth, learning in the same school 
obedience, order, self-control, and virtuous habits ; imbibing the 
principles of American republicanism, and becoming familiar with 
our language and history." 

One of the striking examples of European influence exerted 
upon American educational ideals is the interest awakened in phys- 
ical training about the middle of the last century. The Cincinnati 
Daily Gazette for July 2, 1858, in giving an account of the com- 
mencement exercises at Miami university illustrates the extent the 
movement had then reached : 

"The closing exercises, for the year, of this old and well-known 
institution of the state, began yesterday. They were introduced in 
a manner somewhat novel, by an exhibition of the Miami Gymnastic 
association. This society was established in connection with the 
university one year ago, under the direction of our former well- 
known citizen. Dr. J. C. Christin, assisted by Prof. Roemler, 
teacher of gymnastics, also formerly of Cincinnati. The association 
is already in a most flourishing condition, having upwards of fifty 
members, and apparatus worth about $500, erected in the gymnastic 
grove of sixty acres. 

"In addition to the members of the association here, there were 
present, at the exhibit today, about twenty-five representatives of 
the Turners' association at Hamilton, and also delegates from both 
the Turners' and Young Men's Gymnastic association of 
Cincinnati. * * * 

"Messrs. H. Roemler, of Oxford, and Wm. M. Corry and Milton 
Sayler, of Cincinnati, having been appointed judges, awarded the 
prizes to the following persons in their order: T. P. Hatch, of the 
Miami gymnasium association; N. Meyer, of the Turners' associa- 
tion of Cincinnati ; William Whittaker, of the Young Men's Gym- 
nasium association of Cincinnati ; D. H. Evans, of M. G. A. ; France 
Lackner, of the T. A. of Hamilton ; Jeremiah Morrow, of M. G. A. ; 
Jacob Lorentz, of T. A. of Hamilton ; and G. W. Smith, of M. G. A. 
These gentlemen were each crowned with a wreath of evergreen in 
the presence of the multitude, after which the audience dispersed, ap- 
parently much pleased with the entertainment. It is but just to say 
that the exercises of the afternoon were all of the most interesting 
character, and reflected very great credit upon the young men 
engaged in them ; and it is to be hoped that what has been so well 
begun in this university, in the way of physical education, will be 
carried forward with spirit and success." 

The history and difficulties of the Miami Gymnasium associa- 
tion is thus set forth in a report by J, G. Christin, M. D., manager 
of the gymnasium of Miami university, to the board of trustees in 

"When in the fall of 1857 the gymnastic apparatus purchased 
by your committee was offered to the use of the students, a number 
of them organized themselves at once into a society called the 
Miami Gymnastic association, engaged Mr. F. H. Roemler of Cin- 
cinnati as teacher at a salary of ^0 a month and rented a building 


for their gymnasium at a cost of $60 a year. During that entire first 
year, the classes practiced regularly three times a week, and 
with what success you have seen at our festival where the young 
gymnasts of M. U. carried off the first honors of the day over their 
competitors, delegates from several old Turners' societies. But to 
bring about this happy result, we were obliged to complete our 
gymnasium by purchasing about $300 worth more of apparatus. 
This the association did, encouraged as they were by a generous 
donation of $150 from the citizens of Oxford and other friends, and 
believing that they could pay their debt soon by the aid of friends 
and proceeds of some exhibitions. 

"At the beginning of the fall session of 1858, the society was 
reorganized, and Mr. Roemler again engaged as teacher at a salary 
of $480; but as the number of members during these two sessions 
was on an average only about 75, they were, for want of funds, 
obliged to rescind the contract with their teacher at the end of 
March last, whereupon Mr. Roemler went to Dayton as teacher of 
G. M. Gym. A. After his departure, the number of students at the 
exercises of the gymnasium, which under their faithful teacher's 
direction had always been from 60 to 80, dwindled down in a few 
weeks to about a dozen, and today the gymnasium is closed alto- 
gether, for want of interest in the students and citizens to continue 
their exercises without a teacher." 

A statement was presented showing receipts of $1,025 and 
expenses of $1,325, leaving the M. G. A. in debt $300. 

"Reduced thus to the necessary alternative, either to seek aid 
at your hands, gentlemen, or to abandon the gymnasium altogether, 
and thus to throw away the thousand dollars already spent for it, 
I take the liberty of proposing to your honorable body a plan for 
the secure and permanent establishment of an excellent gymnasium 
at M. U." 

As a result of this report the board of trustees provided for the 
discharge of the indebtedness of the association, taking over the 
property and management of the same, thus making it an integral 
part of the university system. 

Effects of the Civil War on Education. Every great war is a 
transitional stage in human development. The series of revolution- 
ary contests that climaxed in a world peace in 1815 was followed, 
particularly in the country to the westward of the Allegheny moun- 
tains, by certain characteristic tendencies. These, as we have 
already seen, tended along several main lines. 

First, there was the establishment of certain land grant insti- 
tutions which by reason of the emphasis placed by the Presbyterians 
on an educated ministry, had for the most part passed under the 
dominance of men of that faith as the ones best fitted to administer 
them. A second was a move on the part of certain denominations, 
due to their dissatisfaction with the situation in the state institu- 
tions, to found denominational colleges. A third was the move on 
the part of New England to recover the dominance which she had 
lost on account of the westward trend of empire to recover her 
prestige by the establishment of a number of cultural centers which 
through the radiation of their ideals would tend to bind the West to 


the East rather than permit her continued alliance with the South. 
The fourth was the development of a new type of education which, 
though it bore a correspondence to that of the older settled areas, 
had its own individualistic characteristics. 

So also the contest between the sections of our country which 
culminated in the Civil war was accompanied by a new trend in 
American education. President Thwing gives five reasons for the 
great educational progress in the United States since the Civil war : 
(1) American Idealism, (2) Quickening or stimulating effects of the 
war itself, (3) The settlement of questions incident to slavery af- 
forded opportunity to give attention to other great American needs 
and problems, (4) The appearance of several personalities who 
became great educational leaders, and, (5) The presence of so many 
immigrants who were unaccustomed to the privileges and duties of 
a democracy. 

One of the tendencies has been a marked development of com- 
mon school education, particularly in the rural districts. An ex- 
amination of the school reports brings out some facts which cause 
the Miami valley area to sustain a favorable comparison with the 
other areas of the state. 

In 1867 the average number of weeks that the ungraded or 
county district schools were in operation throughout the state was 
26. Ten years later the Ohio average was 28 and in 1887 it had 
risen to 29 weeks. The average term for the country school of the 
Western reserve was 26.3 weeks or .3 above the state average in 
1867; in 1877 it was 27.1 or .9 below the average, while in 1887 it 
was 30.1 weeks, or 1.1 above the state average for the same grade 
of schools. During the same period the ungraded rural schools of 
the Miami valley averaged 27.5, 31.2 and 32,5 weeks respectively. 
In 1897 the Ohio average for this class of schools was 30 weeks, 
while the two sections under consideration showed 32.5 weeks 
for the Western reserve and 32.7 weeks for the Miami valley. Ten 
years later the state average reached 32 weeks and that of the two 
sections stood at 33.8 and 33.2 weeks, respectively. The figures 
for 1916, the last available, show an average school year of 38.3 
weeks for the reserve and ZZ.7 for the Miami valley. 

As far as the length of the rural school term is indicative of the 
attitude of the people toward popular education, the Miami valley 
has a somewhat better record than that of the Western reserve for 
the period since the Civil war, especially the first half of the period. 

If one considers the remuneration of teachers in any way an 
index of the character or grade of work done in the ruril schools, 
the Miami valley has distanced the Western reserve quite per- 
ceptibly. The following table shows the standing of these sections 
by decades since 1867, in average monthly salary. 

—1867— —1877— —1887— —1897— —1907— 

Men Women Men Women Men Women Men Women Men Women 

West. Reserve.. 31.9 ^7-^ 34-9 22.1 33.2 26 30.5 27.7 42.2 41.5 
Miami valley... 41.7 29.5 44.3 33.1 44.8 34.8 43.1 39.3 49.8 47.4 
Ohio average.. 35 23 37 26 37 26 35 29 44 42 

From the above sets of figures it will be readily seen that the 
Miami valley was giving the rural schools increased support during 


the fifty years covered by this study and that it was not surpassed 
by any section of the state. A study and comparison of the rural 
schools has been made because it more nearly reflects the attitude 
of the whole areas. If a comparison of city schools were made, 
the area having the larger number of cities within its borders would 
appear to advantage. Another trend of this period has been the 
remarkable growth of the tax-supported high school, and the 
decadence of the old-time academy. 

The first legislation that clearly provides for a free tax- 
supported high school was that passed in 1843, to enable Cincinnati 
to establish such a school. That city had enjoyed the ministrations 
of endowed high schools which admitted a certain number of free 
pupils, and there had been some negotiations looking to the fusion 
of the Hughes and Woodward schools with the public school system 
of the city. There being some delay in securing the legal authority, 
it was enacted by the legislature February 11, 1845, that the trustees 
and visitors of the common schools of Cincinnati, with the consent 
of the city council, "were empowered to establish and maintain, 
out of the funds under the control of said trustees and visitors, such 
other grade of schools than those already established, as might 
to them seem necessary and expedient, and to have taught therein, 
such other studies, in addition to those now taught in the common 
schools of said city as might be deemed appropriate and useful under 
such regulations as said visitors might from time to time prescribe." 
Under the provision of this act, passed a year in advance of that 
providing for the Cleveland high school and two years in advance 
of the famous Akron act, the Central high school was established. 
However, due to legal delays in the merging of the Hughes and 
Woodward schools with the city system, the Central high school 
did not become operative until November 8, 1847, a year after the 
Cleveland school had opened. 

One of the interesting educational phenomena of this period was 
the rise and decline of the National normal at Lebanon. 

In the summer of 1855 the second normal school in Ohio was 
founded as a result of a three-weeks' institute which was held at 
Miami university. The Southwestern State Normal School asso- 
ciation was organized at this meeting. The object of the venture 
was to establish and maintain a state normal school in southwestern 
Ohio until state aid could be obtained. The first board of trustees 
consisted of A. J. Rickoff of Cincinnati, Charles Rogers of Dayton, 
and E. C. Ellis of Georgetown. This board chose Lebanon for the 
location of their venture and on November 24, 1855, the school was 
opened with about ninety students enrolled. In a few years the 
name of the first principal of the school had become a household 
word throughout the state, and few men in Ohio did more for the 
cause of education than did Alfred Holbrook. The growth and 
influence of this school present an interesting study and together 
with H. S. Lehr's Ohio Normal university at Ada, they furnish a 
unique chapter in the history of education in Ohio. At Lebanon 
was a school where students, men or women, with little academic 
preparation, might enter at several times during the year and find 
suitable work. Two decades after its founding it enrolled 1,600 


Students during the year. Here many young men and women who 
through lack of funds or entrance deficiencies could not have en- 
rolled in the old line four-year college found a school which would 
give them every economy of time and effort, and at the same time 
give them an inspirational start up the long educational ladder. It 
would be difficult to overestimate the value of this institution to 
the cause of education in the Miami valley during a long period of 
years, but more especially the period from about 1865 to 1895. 

Like many schools of its kind, it found in the tax-supported 
institutions a competition which became increasingly difficult to 
meet, especially from a financial viewpoint, and a few years ago this 
institution was forced to discontinue. An interesting sidelight on 
the kind of work which was offered by the national normal may be 
had from the following prospectus of the courses of study taken from 
a catalogue of 1875 : 

Course of Study in National Normal School in 1875. — Teachers' 
Course: This ordinarily requires two terms of eleven weeks each, 
in order to obtain a teacher's certificate, and three terms for a 
diploma. This shorter course prepares teachers to manage a gram- 
mar school, as well as any of the lower grades with success. The 
branches pursued are: English grammar, arithmetic, geography, 
map drawing, physiology. United States history, penmanship, ob- 
jective drawing, elocution, and the art of school teaching and school 

Business Course: The business course requires two or three 
sessions. Many combine the teachers' and business courses, which 
can be done by giving an additional term. Three terms are gen- 
erally sufficient for the completion of both courses. 

Engineering Course: The engineers' course requires three or 
four terms. This fits young men for any possible form of county 
surveying, also for managing a squad of men in railroad engineering. 
Many combine the business course and the engineering course. 
This can generally be done in three or four terms. 

Collegiate Course: The scientific course requires one year of 
fifty weeks, besides two or three terms in the preparatory depart- 
ment. The classical course requires an additional year of fifty 

In the antebellum days, Miami drew a considerable portion 
of her students from the south, but of course this part of her con- 
stituency was lost never to return. This and other influences such as 
the Morrill act, granting land for higher education, greatly narrowed 
the scope of Miami's patronage and influence. The result of these 
conditions was a very limited income, and careful management 
could not prevent deficits. As Doctor Upham puts it, in his "Old 
Miami," "Her land rents had been long before prevented by law 
from ever increasing beyond a beggar's pittance, while other col- 
leges, springing up all over the land with the revival of confidence 
and prosperity, lavished money on salaries and equipment. People 
professed to find the good old curriculum away out of date, but there 
were no funds in the Miami treasury to establish new chairs and 
add new furbelows. Tuition fees helped some, but depleted rolls 
meant depleted income. * * * The state legislature was being 


petitioned at each session to extend aid to this child of its adoption, 
and everybody assured everybody else that some day this aid was 
coming." Miami also expected to benefit by the Morill act granting 
land for the establishing of agricultural colleges, but aid did not 
come from either of these sources, and notwithstanding "that 
students were on hand in at least comfortable numbers," the uni- 
versity decided to close its doors after the commencement of 1873. 

During the dozen years following, the only Miami was the 
Miami of memory. But through these years a small fund was ac- 
cumulating from the early land grant and in 1885 the trustees 
decided to reopen the old college. This gap in the alumni list of 
the university deprives her of valuable counsel and support. 

Several changes came with the reopening in 1885. It was at 
this time that the long expected state aid came, in small doses to 
be sure, but very welcome nevertheless. As might be anticipated, 
the appearance of state aid through legislative grant meant the ap- 
pearance of the "Co-ed" and the catalogue of 1888 states that "the 
university is now open to women in all of its departments." How- 
ever, it was some years before any women were graduated. 

The deleterious effects of being closed during twelve years are 
apparent when one examines the statistics of attendance for the 
first year after reopening. Not only was there a dearth of students, 
but the faculty showed the same condition. It may be mentioned 
in passing that several of the faculty and a considerable number of 
the students found their places as faculty members and students in 
other institutions when Miami suspended operation in 1873. The 
catalogue of 1885-86 lists a faculty of eight members and a student 
body of fifty distributed as follows: Sophomores 7, freshmen 12, 
second year preparatory 9, first year preparatory 22. 

A tuition fee of $45 per year was charged, so that now the in- 
come of the university came from four sources. Rent on university 
lands, appropriations from the state legislature, gifts from friends 
and alumni, and tuition fees. Considering the slender resources of 
the university, the small student body and the quaint little town of 
Oxford, the following admonition repeated in several catalogues 
after 1885 provokes a smile : "Parents should remember that an 
abundance of spending money given to students is ordinarily an 
unmixed evil." 

Perhaps the presence of two colleges for women in Oxford ac- 
counts in part at least for the small enrollment of women in Miami 
university. In 1888-89 two women were enrolled as "special 
students." During the year 1890-01, no women were in attendance. 
The next year twenty-two women are classed as special students. 
Of these all but two were from the village of Oxford. At this time 
there were two freshman girls. In 1893-94 one woman was listed 
as a "postgraduate" and in 1894-95 there were no women in any of 
the departments. No woman received a degree from the institution 
until June, 1900. The coming of the normal college in 1902 makes 
the presence of the fair sex much more common. 

The growth of the university during the years 1885-1902 was 
rather slow. Despite the untiring efforts of faithful administrators, 
self-sacrificing faculty and loyal friends, the future of Miami was 


not very roseate. In 1902, however, a better day dawned. Ohio 
at this date established normal colleges at each of the land grant 
universities and by so doing began a more healthful appropriation in 
support of Miami and Ohio universities. A summer session opened 
in 1903 with an enrollment of 488. The normal college that fall had 
nearly 200 and the college of liberal arts showed a handsome 

To a superficial observer it might appear that no cause for 
anxiety was in sight, but it was only the calm that precedes an 
approaching storm. Several forces were at work seeking to curtail 
or detach all state aid from the university in order to focus on one 
strong central tax-supported university. By the end of the first 
decade of the twentieth century, however, a compromise had been 
reached and the state appropriations arc now assured and are keep- 
ing pace with the growth and usefulness of the institution. The 
growth has been steady during the last decade and the time is not 
far distant when considerable expansion will be necessary to accom- 
modate the young men and women who wish to attend one of the 
strongest institutions of its class in the middle west. 

Dominance of Cincinnati in Educational Development of Ohio. 
Much has already been said that evinces the leading part which 
Cincinnati has played in the educational affairs of Ohio through 
most of her history. Space will permit of few additional illustrS"- 
tions of this statement. The education of the children of foreigners 
was begun as early as 1837 ; music was introduced into the schools 
of Cincinnati in 1844; drawing in 1862; night high schools in 1856; 
a city normal school in 1868. At the Centennial Exhibition at 
Philadelphia in 1876, the schools of Cincinnati won gold and silver 
medals for their exhibits. The high schools of the city were among 
the first in the country to provide courses in domestic science. The 
continuation school, or the co-operative plan, worked out by Dean 
Schneider for the engineering students of Cincinnati university, is 
unique in educational circles and has been copied by schools in 
various parts of the world. Of the municipal universities of the 
entire country, that of Cincinnati founded in 1869 must be given 
first place. 

Cincinnati university was founded in 1874 on a foundation es- 
tablished in 1858 by Charles McMicken, but which, due to various 
obstacles, was not until now adequate to the end in view. An 
attempt to unite the various trust funds held for the promotion of 
education within the bounds of the city having failed, the city as- 
sumed a partial support of the institution which now embraces the 
Graduate school, the McMicken college of liberal arts, the college 
of teachers, the college of engineering, the college of medicine, the 
college of commerce and the school of household arts. 

Though a tax-supported institution, it has appealed to the lib- 
erality of many public-spirited citizens of Cincinnati, from whom it 
has received many munificent gifts to aid in the furthering of its 
work. One of the interesting features is the evening classes in the 
college of liberal arts opened in 1912 in order that those persons 
whose occupations prevented them from attending day classes might 
have opportunity to take college courses at night. 


Educational Pioneers. Among the men of the Ohio valley who 
were largely instrumental in moulding the educational ideals of the 
state and of the western portion of our country in particular, the 
following deserve special mention. 

Samuel Lewis is perhaps entitled to head the list of the early 
educators of the valley as being first in point of time and prominence 
in the advocacy of the rights of all the people to a common school 
education. Born in Massachusetts in 1799, he at the age of fourteen 
moved with other members of his family to Cincinnati. The trip 
was made on foot as far as Pittsburg, from which point the family 
floated down the Ohio to their destination in a flatboat. 

Having learned a trade, he paid his father $50 a year for his 
time that he might be more free in framing his life plan. Working 
and studying, he developed talents that qualified him for license as 
a local preacher in the Methodist church, of which he was an earnest 
and consistent member. He was soon employed in the advocacy of 
temperance and of education. His interest in the latter subject had 
not a little to do in influencing his friend William Woodward to 
found the institution bearing his name, of which, as also of the 
Hughes high school, he served as an influential trustee. 

Recognizing the magnitude of the task of providing an adequate 
educational system for the state, and the qualities of mind and will 
that were requisite in him who would do that work, the better class 
of teachers of the state secured his election by legislature in 1837 
to the position of state superintendent of education. In this capacity 
he traveled thousands of miles, delivered numerous addresses, pre- 
pared a series of reports and secured the enactment of legislation 
that evinced him to be a man of rare energy, capacity and power of 
achievement. Though he met with much opposition in his crusade, 
into which he threw himself with all the ardor of a medieval knight 
errant, and the time of administration lasted but two years, he 
achieved results that have persisted to the present. The ardor which 
he manifested in all his undertakings soon exhausted his vital ener- 
gies and he died at the early age of fifty-five. His thorough grasp 
of the educational situation, his appreciation of the inadequacy of 
the existing educational provisions to meet the needs of all the 
people, his eloquence, persistency, and rare disinterestedness in the 
advocacy of his ideals entitle him to recognition as the founder of 
the present common school system of Ohio. 

Milo G. Williams was born in Cincinnati in 1804, his parents 
being from New Jersey. At the age of sixteen he became a teacher 
in the village school in which he had studied as a pupil. In 1823 he 
opened a private school in Cincinnati which soon became so popular 
that he was required to secure additional rooms and employ other 
teachers. He graded his classes and organized the school under four 
departments and successfully introduced the study of constitu- 
tional law. 

In 1833 he went to Dayton to accept the supervision of a manual 
labor institution, but this failing to meet the expectations of its 
promoters, he in 1837 accepted the position of principal of the 
Springfield high school, which was opened in that year. In 1840 
he returned to Cincinnati, where he was shortly elected a professor 


in Cincinnati college. In 1844 he removed to Dayton to reorganize 
the Dayton academy. Five years later he was elected president and 
professor of science in the college newly founded by the church of 
the New Jerusalem at Urbana, in which capacity he continued to 
serve until 1870. 

Mr. Williams' educational activities were along many lines. He 
assisted in organizing "The Western Literary Institute and Board of 
Education," which largely through his efforts became "The Western 
Literary Institute and College of Teachers," of which association he 
was for ten years the corresponding secretary. He delivered many 
addresses along educational lines and prepared a number of educa- 
tional reports. In one of these he advocated the establishment of a 
normal school in each congressional district. By reason of his varied 
and important activities, he is entitled to a high place among the 
founders and promoters of education in the west. 

Among Cincinnati's promoters of a better system of education 
was Nathan Guilford. In 1821 he was one of a committee appointed 
by the state legislature to consider the educational needs of the state. 
This report advised the appointment of a commission of seven to 
devise and report a system of common schools, of which he was one 
of the members. From the report of this commission which advised 
the establishment of a system based on the New York plan, he dis- 
sented on the ground that it was not broad and comprehensive 
enough to meet the needs of the state, and wrote a letter to the 
legislature in which he urged upon the state the founding of a 
system of free education. This position proving too advanced for 
the vision of the legislators, he appealed to the people and was 
elected to the state senate from Cincinnati. In this capacity he 
served as chairman of the joint committee on education. This 
committee later presented a bill "which required a tax of one-half 
a mill on the dollar to be levied for school purposes by the county 
commissioners, made township clerks and county auditors, school 
officers and provided for school examiners." This bill without 
amendment received the sanction of a large majority of the members 
of both houses. In 1850 Mr. Guilford was elected superintendent of 
the public schools of Cincinnati, in which capacity he served for a 
number of years. 

Of the early educators of the Miami valley none was better be- 
loved or more effective in leaving his immediate impress on the 
lives of so large a number of prominent leaders in our national life, 
than Robert Hamilton Bishop, who was born in 1777 at Cult, near 
Edinburgh, Scotland. He graduated from the University at Edin- 
burgh in 1798 and from the Associate Presbyterian Theological 
seminary at Selkirk in 1802. In that year he was induced by Rev. 
John M. Mason of New York City to come to America and identify 
himself with the Associate Reformed Presbyterian church. Upon 
his arrival in this country he was assigned to the presbytery of 
Kentucky and itinerated for a while in that state and in southern 
Ohio. In 1804 he located at Lexington, Kentucky, taking pastoral 
charge of several congregations in that vicinity. The same year 
he was elected professor of logic and moral philosophy in Transyl- 
vania university. In 1818 he was made professor of mathematics 


and natural philosophy. The teaching of mathematics was soon 
assigned to an assistant and he was given history in its stead. In 
1819 he connected with the Presbyterian church. During his con- 
nection with the university he continued his pulpit ministrations, 
which were highly appreciated. Rev. David McDill, sr., who grad- 
uated from Transylvania university in 1813, says of him: "He soon 
ascended to a high rank among the pulpit orators of Kentucky. 
'Clay at the bar, or Bishop in the pulpit,' was at one time among the 
students of Transylvania university the 'ne plus ultra' of human 
greatness. There are and have been but few men in the United 
States who could wield a general principle with the same facility and 
apply it to such a variety of cases. This was his forte. In it he 
excelled Dr. Mason." 

In 1824 Dr. Bishop accepted the presidency of Miami university. 
Prior to this time the institution had had a precarious existence. 
In 1811 a schoolhouse had been erected on the university reservation 
in which James Dorsey had conducted a private school until 1818. 
In that year one wing of the university building and a house for 
the president being completed, the trustees opened a grammar 
school with Rev. James Hughes as principal. This school was main- 
tained until 1821, when, the principal dying, it was discontinued 
that the main building might be the more speedily finished. By 1824 
this work was so well under way and the regular income of the 
institution was such, that it was determined to raise the school to 
collegiate rank. The income for the year ending December 31, 1824, 
is shown by the records to have been $4,503.07 >4. To shape the 
policy of the young institution Dr. Bishop was eminently qualified. 
In 1841 he resigned the presidency of the institution to accept the 
professorship of history and political science, in which capacity he 
served until 1844. From that time till his death he devoted himself 
to the upbuilding of Farmers' college at College Hill, near Cincinnati. 

Of President Bishop's colleagues, one of the most distinguished 
was William H. McGuffey, concerning whom we cannot do better 
than quote from his son-in-law. Prof. Hepburn : 

"William Holmes McGufTey was born in western Pennsylvania 
in 1800, and was brought to Ohio by his parents when a child. He 
was of Scotch-Irish stock. His father was a sturdy farmer; his 
mother was devoutly pious, her one wish being that William should 
become a preacher. There were no schools in those days, and as the 
elder McGuiTey was not a strong believer in education, the boy had a 
hard time in his search for knowledge. A preacher who lived several 
miles away took an interest in him, and taught him. To this man's 
house young McGuiTey would walk two or three times each week to 
recite the lessons he had learned at night, using for light a pine knot, 
which he burned in the fireplace at his home. 

At the age of eighteen he entered Washington college, from 
which he was graduated with honors in 1826. During his college 
course McGuffey would go out and teach, it being necessary for him 
to help himself. His last engagement of this kind was in Paris, Ken- 
tucky, where he taught in an old smokehouse, which probably still 
stands — it was there a few years ago. It was while there, and before 
his graduation, that he was elected to the faculty of Miami. He was 


ordained a Presbyterian minister in Oxford in 1832, and at once 
became active as a preacher, taking a prominent part in the theolog- 
ical controversies of that period. 

When the Cincinnati college was opened in 1836, Dr. McGuffey 
became its president, serving until it closed, three years later, for 
want of funds. While in Cincinnati he was one of a coterie of 
great educators who started the agitation for public schools — the 
common schools they were then called. Among these men were 
Prof. Ray, author of the famous mathematical series ; Prof. Miller, 
the astronomer; Edward D. Mansfield and others. 

Dr. McGufi'ey was president of Ohio university, at Athens, from 
1839 to 1843, his administration being a stormy one. The enclosing 
of the college campus, and the demand for a revaluation of the 
property of the village of Athens, upon which rent was paid for the 
support of the institution, were events of his executive incumbency 
which caused a large amount of discussion. 

In 1843 Dr. McGuffey returned to Cincinnati and became a 
professor in Woodward high school. By that time he had become 
famous, not only as an educator, but as a preacher and lecturer. He 
was particularly effective as an extemporaneous speaker, never being 
known to write an address. His audience put him to his best. 

Two years later the distinguished William C. Rives, a member 
of the board of visitors of the University of Virginia, heard Dr. 
McGufTey lecture in Cincinnati, and was so impressed by the power 
of the speaker that, upon his recommendation, Dr. McGufifey was 
called to the Virginia institution, where he spent the remainder 
of his life teaching philosophy, preaching and lecturing, full of the 
vigor of manhood. One day in the spring of 1873, after having 
delivered a lecture of great power to children, he was taken ill with 
an affection of the brain, from which he died in a few weeks. He 
was buried in the cemetery of the University of Virginia. 

Dr. McGuffey was a strong man, a great teacher, and the 
effects of his work cannot be estimated. While possessing no false 
dignity, and never emphasizing himself, he inspired his pupils as 
few teachers ever did. He was of medium size, varied features, 
and thoughtful temperament. One's first impression of him was 
that he was very stern. He was firm, and stood by his convictions 
when once they had been formed ; but he was liberal, and all his 
pupils loved him. 

Another of President Bishop's colleagues was John W. Scott, 
who was born in Pennsylvania, January 22, 1800. He graduated 
from Washington college in 1823, after which he studied physics and 
natural science at Yale university. He then returned to his alma 
mater where he served as professor of natural science, 1824-28. In 
the latter year he was elected professor of mathematics, geography, 
natural philosophy and astronomy and teacher of political economy, 
1828-32; ordained to the ministry by the presbytery of Oxford in 
1830; professor of natural philosophy, astronomy, and chemistry, 
1835-45; professor in Farmers' college, 1849-54; founder and princi- 
pal of Oxford Female institute, 1849-54; professor of natural science 
at Hanover college, 1860-68; at Concordia college, Springfield. 
Illinois, 1868-70, and at Monongahela college, 1874-81. 


After retiring from teaching he accepted a government position 
at Washington, which he resigned when his son-in-law, Benjamin 
Harrison, was elected to the presidency lest, as he said, he come 
under the curse, "The elder shall serve the younger." 

Rufus King, a grandson of the Revolutionary patriot and states- 
man, was born at Chillicothe in 1817. After graduating at Harvard, 
he established himself at Cincinnati, where he became one of the 
leading lawyers of the city. For many years he served on the school 
board of that city, of which body he was president for twelve years. 
He had a large part in the reorganization of the schools of that city 
and in the increase of their usefulness. Upon his suggestion a bill 
was prepared providing for the consolidation of the school libraries 
in cities and thus the way was prepared for the present library 
system of Cincinnati. He later served as president of the board of 
trustees of Cincinnati university, the schools of art and design and 
the Cincinnati observatory. 

Calvin E. Stowe was born at Natick, Mass., in 1802. Having 
graduated from Bowdoin college and Andover Theological seminary 
and served as professor of languages at Dartmouth college, he came 
to Cincinnati in 1833 to become professor of biblical literature in 
Lane Theological seminary. Recognizing the educational needs of 
the state he associated himself with those public-spirited persons 
who were already advocating a common school system. In 1836 he 
visited Europe and in 1837 published his report on Elementary 
Education in Ohio. This report urged thoroughness in preparation 
and in work, freedom from routine and slavish subservience to 
text books. This book was widely distributed throughout Ohio 
and other states. 

Another teacher and text book author of the period was Joseph 
Ray, who gave to the educational world the series of mathematical 
texts that bear his name. He was born in Ohio County, Virginia, 
in 1807. Manifesting an aptitude for study, he entered Washington 
college, but did not complete the course of study prescribed for a 
degree. Taking up the study of medicine, he graduated from the 
Ohio Medical college at Cincinnati. Instead of taking up the prac- 
tice of his profession, he joined the teaching staff of Woodward 
college, of which he later became president, in which capacity he 
served until his death in 1856. 

William Norris Edwards was born at Pittsfield, Mass., July 4, 
1812, and graduated from Williams college. He came west and 
for a time conducted a private academy at Dayton. In 1852 he 
became superintendent of public schools of Troy, in which relation 
he continued till his death in 1867. He was elected president of the 
State Teachers' association in 1861. He was a man of culture and 
deliberation of judgment, who enjoyed the gratitude of his pupils, 
the respect of his fellow teachers, and the confidence and affection 
of his fellow citizens. 

Robert W. Steele, descended from one of the pioneer families 
of Dayton, was born in 1819. He studied at Dayton academy and 
graduated from Miami university with the class of 1840. In 1842 he 
became connected with the public schools of Dayton in the capacity 
of clerk of the board of managers. For more than thirty years he 


served in an administrative capacity. For twelve years of this time 
he was president of the board of education. By reason of the dis- 
tinguished services rendered by him to the educational interests of 
his city, the principal high school building has been named in 
his honor. 

Samuel Galloway was born at Gettysburg, Pa., in 1811, but in 
his early youth moved to western Ohio. He graduated from Miami 
university in 1833, after which he taught for a number of years. 
In 1842 he was admitted to the bar and shortly afterward took up 
his residence at Columbus. When in his official capacity as secre- 
tary of state, he was ex officio state superintendent of common 
schools. In this he did much by means of his exceptional ability 
to promote the cause of education. Upon the founding of the State 
Teachers' association in 1847 he was chosen its first president. 

While the fathers of the Miami valley have labored with such 
distinction, her sons are following in the footsteps of their illus- 
trious predecessors. They are occupying positions of influence and 
honor in many of the educational institutions and agencies of the 
country. A few years since, when Boston desired the ablest man 
to be obtained, she chose a product of the valley in the person of 
Prof. Dyer, erstwhile dean of the Normal college of Miami university 
and later superintendent of the Cincinnati schools. When the 
government desired a man to effectively direct the educational work 
of the Students' Army Training Corps, she chose President R. M. 
Hughes, the major part of whose life has been identified with this 
area. Numerous other names might be mentioned, did space permit. 

Prominence of the Miami Valley in the Educational Develop- 
ment of the State. As previously indicated, it has been the habit of 
some writers to dilate upon the importance of the Western Reserve 
element in the promulgation of educational ideals in Ohio. While 
no one will deny that this element has been a strong support to 
educational development in the state as it has been everywhere, 
it may be questioned whether any one section or area of the state 
is wholly responsible for this rather remarkable progress. While 
we may not therefore arrogate to the Miami valley sole honor of 
having evolved Ohio's educational system, the facts show that she 
does not suffer by a fair comparison with the Western Reserve. It 
may be seriously questioned whether any other area has contributed 
more to the educational progress of the state than has the Miami 


DURING the period preceding the War of 1812 the people of the 
Miami valley, and for that matter of the entire State of Ohio, 
were occupied literally in getting out of the woods. The social 
and economic fusion of the population was delayed and dense 
forests separated the dififerent settlements. The barrier of the 
Alleghanies cut them off from the markets of the Atlantic states, 
except for live stock, which could be driven over the mountains 
on foot. As a result of these conditions the occupations of the 
people were mainly pastoral or agricultural. Yet the very barriers 
which made it hard to dispose of surplus products and difficult 
and costly to import merchandise, etc., served to hasten home 
manufactures, much the same as a protective tariff theoretically 
is supposed to do. The towns in the region of which we write had 
the advantages of river communication with each other, as well as 
with Pittsburg, Louisville and New Orleans, and it was in these 
centers that manufacture and commerce first developed. Natur- 
ally, the first banks organized in the state were established here. 
This was the most populous and flourishing part of the state at 
that time. With the broad and fertile expanse of the valley, the 
immense agricultural back country, and its advantageous location 
on the Ohio river, opposite the mouth of the Licking river, Cin- 
cinnati easily gained an ascendancy which made it the leading city 
in the west for many years. 

The population of the Miami country was not over 2,000 in 
1790, and in 1800 it was about 15,000. In 1810 the single county of 
Hamilton contained 15,258, and the Miami country about 70,000, 
or one-fourth of the whole population of the state. According 
to Drake, in his "Picture of Cincinnati," this had increased to about 
100,000 in 1815. Agriculture and stockraising advanced rapidly 
in this important region. The fertile soil produced immense crops 
of wheat and corn, and scores of grist mills turned the wheat into 
flour. The corn was utilized largely in feeding hogs, though many 
distilleries flourished throughout the region, where the farmers 
turned their surplus corn into whiskey. Much of this whiskey 
and flour, together with the pork, bacon and lard prepared upon the 
farms in winter, found its way to Cincinnati, there to be shipped 
via the Ohio and Mississippi rivers to New Orleans. Whiskey, 
beef, pork and lumber and staves were shipped from Cincinnati 
to New Orleans by water as early as 1803, and it was in connection 
with this river traffic of Cincinnati that the first bank in Ohio was 

The enterprising citizens of the Miami country were quick to 
recognize the advantages of association under state authority in 



the transaction of business. Almost as soon as the State of Ohio 
was admitted into the Union, Martin Baum, a prominent Cincinnati 
merchant, who had early become active in manufacture and trade in 
that city and was most influential in attracting German immigra- 
tion there, organized a company, with several of his business as- 
sociates, to facilitate trade. They applied to the legislature for a 
charter, and as a result, at the first session of that body, the Miami 
Exporting company was incorporated, Aprii 15, 1803. The original 
object of this company was the exportation of agricultural prod- 
uce, chiefly to New Orleans, and banking, if purposed at all, was a 
secondary consideration. Its charter, however, permitted the issue 
of notes payable to bearer and assignable by delivery only; and 
the company, which began business operation in 1804, was soon 
exercising the powers of banking. It issued bills and redeemed 
them, not in specie, but in the notes of other banks. Thus the 
Miami Exporting company became the first bank in Ohio, and 
perhaps the second west of the Alleghanies, the first having been 
the Lexington Insurance company, incorporated in 1802, and es- 
tablished at Lexington, Ky. The latter is said to have obtained 
its banking privileges surreptitiously, but Gouge, in his history 
of early banking in the United States, suggests that, as the title 
of the Miami Exporting company indicates that it was established 
ostensibly for commercial purposes, perhaps banking privileges 
were obtained for it surreptitiously, also. Be this as it may, the 
Miami Exporting company almost from the first did a banking 
business, opening an office in Cincinnati for that express purpose. 
In fact, on March 1, 1807, the bank went into full operation, all 
commercial projects having previously been relinquished. 

The charter of the Miami Exporting company was granted for 
a period of forty years, and provided for a board of eleven directors, 
who' were to be chosen annually, and one of whom was to be 
elected president. The authorized capital stock of the company 
was fixed at $500,000, divided into shares of $100 each, payable $5 
in cash at the time of subscribing, and $45 in produce and manu- 
factures such as the president and directors would receive in the 
first year, and the remaining $50 in produce and manufactures from 
July to March of the following year. The stockholders were to 
give notice in writing at the company's office on or before the first 
day of September following, what kind of produce and manufactures 
and the probable amount thereof they would deliver, but the presi- 
dent and directors were to designate the times and places of 

Not all of the authorized capital was ever paid in. Gouge, 
in his "Short History of Paper Money and Banking," gives the 
capital of this company as $200,000, and this agrees with the amount 
stated in the list of Ohio banks organized before 1812, as published 
in the first issue of the Banker's Magazine. The directors, however, 
in 1811, authorized the sale of a large number of additional shares 
of the capital stock of the company, and Nov. 28 of that year they 
issued a notice offering these to purchasers with the privilege of 
taking them either at $102, to be paid at the time of subscribing, 
or at $104, to be paid one-fourth at the time of subscribing, one- 


fourth in six months, one-fourth in twelve months, and the remain- 
ing one-fourth when required by the board, the subscribers, how- 
ever, to have at least thirty days' notice. And Daniel Drake, writ- 
ing in 1815, says that the capital consisted of $450,000 paid in by 
190 persons, the number of stockholders at that time. 

However, it is probable that not all of this $450,000 was ever 
actually paid in cash, for it was a common practice among banks 
of the period following the War of 1812 to accept what were known 
as stock notes in payment of subscriptions for stock ; that is, after 
making the first payment or two in cash, the subscriber would be 
permitted to pay the remainder of his subscription with his own 
note, which would later be redeemed, if at all, with dividends re- 
ceived from the bank. It is likely that a considerable portion of the 
Miami Exporting company's $450,000 capital stock was paid in that 
way, especially the later issues of that stock. A published balance 
sheet of the company, under date of May 11, 1821, gives the amount 
of money paid by the stockholders on their shares as $379,178. 

The Miami Exporting company continued in the undisturbed 
employment of its banking powers without question until 1822, 
when it became unable to progress with its business. From that 
time until 1834 it engaged in no business but such as was required 
for adjusting and closing its debts and credits and maintaining its 
corporate organization. In 1831 Gallatin listed it, with a capital 
stock of $468,966, among the banks which had failed since 1811. 
In 1834, however, it was resuscitated, and provision was made for 
the payment of its stock, the liquidation of its debts, and the redemp- 
tion of its outstanding notes. It then recommenced the business 
of banking, but was finally compelled to wind up its affairs before 
the termination of its charter in 1843. In Knox's "History of Bank- 
ing" it is mentioned as having failed, Jan. 10, 1842. 

On Feb. 5, 1813, the Farmers' & Mechanics' bank at Cincinnati, 
with a capital stock of $200,000, was chartered, and on Feb. 11, 1814, 
the Dayton Manufacturing company, at Dayton, commenced busi- 
ness with a capital stock of $100,000. Both of these banks were 
chartered by special acts of the legislature, and their charters ex- 
tended until 1818. The methods of their organization were about 
the same, and the provisions of their charters were quite similar. 
The charter of the Farmers' & Mechanics' bank contained a pro- 
vision which required that one-third of the thirteen directors must 
be practical farmers and the same proportion practical mechanics. 
This bank had been established in 1812, the year before it was in- 
corporated. Another unauthorized concern, the Bank of Cincinnati, 
was founded in 1814, with shares at $50 each, 8,800 of which had 
been sold to 345 persons by 1815, though it had not yet obtained 
a charter. It was governed by twelve directors, chosen annually. 
Its notes, in 1815, were in excellent credit and the dividends had 
advanced from 6 to 8 per cent during the first year. This bank also 
obtained a charter in 1816. 

No statistics are available regarding loans and discounts, note 
circulation, specie on hand, profit and loss, etc., of the banks during 
this period. It is known, however, that the profits of the banks were 
considerable. According to Drake, in his "Picture of Cincinnati in 


1815," the dividends of the Miami Exporting company for several 
years previous had fluctuated between 10 and 15 per cent. And 
the auditor of the state, in 1813, suggested to the legislature the 
advisability of investing a portion of the surplus of the state treas- 
ury in some of the most productive bank stocks, where it would, 
he considered, yield an annual income of 10 or 12 per cent. 

The state legislature, acting on the suggestions of Governor 
Worthington, on Jan. 27, 1816, passed a law prohibiting the issue 
and circulation of unauthorized bank paper. This statute fixed a 
penalty of $1,000 for acting as the officer of a bank violating the law 
and a penalty of three times the amount of the bills or notes issued 
by any unincorporated bank, made all contracts with such banks 
void, and provided that no action could be maintained on any bill 
or note of such banks. A month later, however, on Feb. 23, 1810, 
the legislature passed the important banking law known as the 
"bonus law," an act designed to raise a state revenue from banks 
and to prevent their future increase. 

By this law the charters of the existing banks were extended 
and six new banks were incorporated with a capital stock of $100,- 
000 each, to go into operation when 600 shares of $100 each should 
be subscribed. By the same act there were also incorporated six of 
the companies with which the state had been at war in regard to 
unauthorized banking. The law provided that each of the banks 
thus incorporated should have thirteen directors; that its books 
must always be open to the inspection of directors and of persons 
appointed by the legislature; and that its capital stock might be 
increased to $500,000. Each of the banks, new and old, was to set 
off to the state one share in twenty-five of its capital stock by Sept. 
1, 1816, and to continue to do so as new stock was created and sold. 
On the state's share of the stock the dividends were to accumulate 
until the state owned one-sixth of the stock, after which the divi- 
dends were to be paid by the state. No provision was made to pay 
for the state stock, except that each bank was required to set apart, 
annually, such a part of its profits as would at the expiration of its 
charter produce a sum sufficient for that purpose. The considera- 
tion for this extraordinary bonus was the extension of the charters 
until Jan. 1, 1843, of all the banks accepting the provisions of the 
act by the first Monday of September, 1816; exemption from all 
other state taxation ; and a sort of implied promise that no other 
banks should be created during the term of their charters, but 
this was not definite. The Miami Exporting company did not ac- 
cept the provisions of this law before Sept. 1, 1816, the time desig- 
nated, and the only banks in the Miami valley that were thus in- 
corporated were the Lebanon-Miami Banking company, of Lebanon, 
with an authorized capital stock of $200,000, and the Bank of Cin- 
cinnati, with a capital stock of $600,000. The charter of the former 
bank was accepted Aug. 24, 1816, and the latter Aug. 28, of the 
same year. 

For several years after the passage of the bonus law of Feb. 23, 
1816, it was treated as a general banking law, and under its pro- 
visions the Little Miami Canal & Banking company was incorpo- 
rated on Dec. 29, 1817, with a capital stock of $300,000. Besides 


being authorized to canalize the Little Miami river from the Ohio 
to Waynesville, this company was given power to carry on manu- 
facturing and banking. The Bank of Hamilton, with a capital stock 
of $300,000, was chartered on July 30, 1818. While most of the 
banks were incorporated under this general banking law, to the 
extent that they filed certificates accepting the provisions of the 
bonus law, yet they were all chartered by special acts of the legis- 
lature and their charters varied considerably in details. Thus in 
the charter of the Bank of Hamilton it was first provided that the 
capital stock should be paid up in "money of the United States." 

During most of this period there was suspension of specie 
payments in all parts of the country, except in New England, and 
bank notes were depreciated everywhere. On Aug. 30, 1814, the 
Philadelphia banks suspended specie payments, followed within a 
week or two, according to compact it is said, by all the other banks 
in the middle and s6uthern states. The national government in dis- 
tress for money at that time and at the mercy of the banks, gave 
tacit consent to the suspension, which it was said was to continue 
only during the war. The banks of Ohio and Kentucky, however, 
maintained specie payments until about the first of January, 1815, 
and the Bank of Nashville, Tenn., until July or August, 1815. 
"It must be evident from this," says Gouge, "that if the United 
States government had immediately compelled the banks of the 
great Atlantic cities to redeem the pledge they had given in the 
preceding August, the western country might have suffered but 
little from the suspension of specie payments." But specie resump- 
tion did not take place when peace returned. Instead of redeeming 
their pledge, "the banks, urged on by cupidity, and losing sight of 
moral obligation in their lust for profit, launched out into an extent 
of issues unexampled in the annals of folly." "The years 1815, 
1816," says Hildreth, "may be well marked in the American calen- 
dar, as the jubilee of swindlers, and the Saturnalia of non-specie 
paying banks. Throughout the whole country, New England ex- 
cepted, it required no capital to set up a bank." 

The great over-issue of notes which resulted produced depre- 
ciation. Notes of the Philadelphia banks were depreciated 16 to 
20 per cent, those of the interior of Pennsylvania 25 to 50 per cent, 
and even the notes of the New England banks and a few others 
which continued to pay specie were at a discount, 'for," says Gouge, 
"nobody knew how long any distant bank would continue to pay 
specie. All the banks whose notes were at a discount at New York 
of less than 5 per cent were understood to pay specie on demand." 
Notes of the chartered banks in Ohio, which were quoted at 4 to 
5 per cent discount in Philadelphia in November and December, 
1814, were quoted at 6 to 7 per cent discount on Jan. 2, 1815, 8 to 
10 per cent discount on Dec. 4, 1815, and Jan. 1, 1816, 10 to 12 per 
cent on Dec. 2, 1816, and from 12 to 15 per cent discount on Jan. 6, 
1817. Notes of unauthorized banks in Ohio were quoted in New 
York at times during this period at a discount of 20 to 25 per cent. 

The depreciation of the bank notes, which formed practically 
the only currency everywhere, except in New England, produced 
a great rise in prices. In the west lands rose to double and triple 


their value. At Chillicothe, Ohio, wheat was quoted on Sept. 16, 
1812, at 62^/^ cents per bushel, and on Aug. 3, 1816, it was 75 cents, 
and corn ZT^h to 43 cents, while on Nov. 28, 1816, wheat was worth 
$1.50 and corn 50 cents. The apparent value of all kinds of property 
suddenly went up and the people imagined they were growing rich 
ever so fast. Meanwhile, the banks were paying enormous divi- 
dends. As long as they could issue notes without having to redeem 
them, of course they prospered. They were simply exchanging 
their notes for those of private citizens on condition that the latter 
should pay 6 to 10 per cent interest and the principal at maturity, 
whereas the banks paid neither interest nor principal. 

The enactment of the law, April 10, 1816, establishing the 
Second Bank of the United States, which was expected to lead the 
state banks in the restoration of the currency to a specie basis, was 
soon afterward reinforced by the passage of a joint resolution pro- 
viding that after Feb. 20, 1817, all dues to the United States govern- 
ment must be paid in legal currency, treasury notes, United States 
bank notes, or notes of other specie paying banks. The banks thus 
notified to get on a specie paying basis if they desired credit with 
the government, were reluctant, however, to reduce their loans and 
contract their circulation to that extent. So in the following summer 
the banks of the middle states held a convention and asked that the 
date set for resumption be postponed, on the ground that the United 
States bank could not be organized by that time and that they 
wished its aid in their efforts to resume. 

Likewise the Ohio banks were ready with an excuse for delay- 
ing resumption. In response to a circular letter sent out on July 
22, 1816, by the secretary of the treasury of the United States, in- 
quiring as to resumption, delegates from nearly all the chartered 
banks of Ohio convened at Chillicothe, Sept. 6, 1816, for the purpose 
of agreeing on some general course respecting the resumption of 
specie payments. As the result of their deliberations, they resolved 
that it would not be safe or prudent for the Ohio banks to resume 
until the payment of specie became general at the banks of the 
Atlantic cities ; declared that the Ohio banks there represented 
were ready to resume specie payment; and pledged themselves to 
pay specie for their notes as soon as it should be ascertained that 
the payment of specie had become general at the banks of the 
Atlantic cities. Meanwhile, the banks went on issuing more stock 
and notes and paying more dividends. In fact, in 1816, the banking 
capital in Ohio reached the highest amount reported before the 30's. 

Events were occurring, however, which finally brought about 
the general resumption of specie payments. In January, 1817, a 
branch of the United States bank was established at Cincinnati, 
and on Feb. 20, following, two of the Ohio banks resumed specie 
payments. The other chartered banks of Ohio resumed the pay- 
ment of specie early in the spring, after receiving assurance from 
the United States treasury, it is claimed, that time would be given 
them until the ensuing season for the redemption of their paper, 
large amounts of which had been paid to the government for public 
lands and for internal taxes, 

The effect of resumption at once became apparent in the de- 


creased depreciation of bank notes. Notes of the old charterea 
banks of Ohio, which were quoted in Philadelphia, Jan. 6, at 12 to 
15 per cent discount, rose to 6 per cent discount on April 7. By 
October the public sentiment, which had manifested itself in the 
fall of 1816 in efforts of the people of both Cincinnati and Chillicothe 
to secure branches of the United States bank in those towns, was 
beginning to turn against the bank. But the inflation period was 
about to give way to a period of reaction. 

The many banks which had sprung into existence supplied an 
abundant currency. 'Tf the months of May, June, July and August, 
1815, were the golden age of Philadelphia," says Gouge, "the first 
months of the year 1818 were the golden age of the western country. 
Silver could hardly have been more plentiful at Jerusalem in the 
days of Solomon, than paper money was in Ohio, Kentucky and the 
adjoining regions." The Portsmouth, Ohio, Gazette, of Aug. 12, 
1818, gives a list of twenty-three chartered banks in Ohio, and re- 
marks : "It is supposed that all the above banks have been generally 
prudently managed ; and all (except the German bank of Wooster) 
are in good credit in their respective neighborhoods, and promptly 
redeem their notes with specie." It adds, however, "The notes of 
all the unchartered banks in this state, with the exception of John 
H. Piatt & Company's bank, Cincinnati, which are in good credit, 
and the Bank of Xenia, which are still current in some places, are 
considered as good for nothing." 

Confidence in the local banks was not destined to continue 
much longer, however. For in the summer of 1818 began the crisis 
in the Mississippi valley — a part of the industrial and commercial 
storm which swept the entire country. The causes of the crisis 
were complex. An unnatural expansion in trade had succeeded the 
restrictions caused by the embargo and the war. The speculation 
and high prices promoted by the several years of commercial ex- 
pansion and excessive banking were succeeded by a contraction of 
credits and a fall in prices when the banks endeavored to return to 
a specie basis in 1817. The bank circulation, which in 1815 and 1816 
had reached $110,000,000, was decreased until, in 1819, it was only 
$65,000,000. This resulted in a ruinous fall of prices. The expansion 
of credits and speculative enterprises had been accompanied by a 
great increase of luxury and waste. A large part of the people 
became possessed of the desire to live by speculation instead of by 
work. The gambling spirit dominated them. There were no reason- 
able foundations to many of the schemes and no limits to the ex- 
travagances of the people. A fictitious value was given to all kinds 
of property. Specie disappeared from circulation and all efforts to 
restore society to its natural condition were treated with contempt. 

The crisis in the west began in the summer of 1818, and the im- 
mediate cause was the bank of the United States. Whether on ac- 
count of larger purchases of public lands than usual, the excited 
spirit of enterprise, or whatever cause, it appears that during the 
years immediately following the opening of the United States bank 
the amount of debts due by the west, either to the east or to the 
government, was unusually large. The western branches of the 
bank as a result discounted too largely. On account of the course 


of exchange being in favor of the east and against the west, the 
western branches could issue their notes without much danger of 
their returning upon them. Hence they piled up enormous loans. 
For example, the Cincinnati branch discounted over $1,000,000 in 
October, 1817; over $1,836,000 in June, 1818, and $1,867,383 in 
November, 1818. 

However, in the summer of 1818, the United States bank sensed 
the approaching disaster, and in order to secure safety made a 
radical change, restricting its issues, calling on the state banks for 
the balances due, and adopting the policy of redeeming none of its 
notes except at the branch where issued. This sudden reversal 
of policy, coming at a time when everything was so inflated, burst 
the bubble and "precipitated the panic, for which, however, it was 
hardly more responsible than was Noah for the flood." The United 
States bank was very sudden in its demands. On July 20, 1818, the 
parent bank ordered the Cincinnati branch to collect the balances 
due from the local state banks at the rate of 20 per cent every thirty 
days. As the balances due from the Cincinnati banks amounted to 
about $720,000, this demand meant they were called upon to pay 
about $144,000 every month. The difficulty was increased when, 
on Aug. 28, 1818, the bank issued its orders to the branches to cease 
receiving each others' notes. The Cincinnati banks could not pay. 
In fact, in October they owed more than they had in July, although 
they had tried to redeem their debt, incidentally inflicting distress 
upon their own debtors who, having neither specie, nor bank notes, 
simply could not pay. 

The Cincinnati banks protested vigorously against the action 
of the United States bank. But the latter, instead of yielding and 
offering more favorable terms, prohibited the receipt of the notes 
of the Cincinnati banks. This precipitated a disaster. The three 
Cincinnati banks suspended specie payment on Nov. 5, 1818, and 
most of the other banks soon followed. Niles' Register of Dec. 12, 
1818, says : "It is stated that $2,500 per week are required to pay 
the discounts on monies loaned by the branch of the bank of the 
United States at Cincinnati. The branch has scarcely any of its 
notes in circulation and Ohio has been drained of specie. It is a 
serious enquiry how these discounts are to be paid." 

In November, 1818, the banks were in such a condition that the 
land agent at Cincinnati was ordered to take nothing but United 
States notes and specie in payment of land sales. This caused con- 
sternation among the banks. The notes of the United States bank 
had never circulated in Cincinnati to any great extent, and at that 
time specie was equally scarce. Brokers were selling it at 20 per 
cent premium and their stock threatened soon to be exhausted. The 
result of the edict was, therefore, that the sale of public lands was 
stopped in that locality. 

In the meantime the unauthorized banks had continued to 
flourish and their numbers had constantly increased. Some of these 
were in very good repute. For instance, the notes of the bank of 
Xenia, in June, 1818, were said to be 2 per cent higher at the banks 
of Cincinnati than those of any other of the banks of the state, 
except the Miami Exporting company, and the notes of the bank of 


John H. Piatt & Co., of Cincinnati, were only 4^ per cent discount 
in October, 1818. 

An act to prohibit the practice of buying and receiving bank 
notes at a discount was passed Feb. 8, 1819. It provided that all 
bank notes should pass at their face value; fixed a penalty of not 
over $500 for receiving or paying away notes at a discount; and 
provided that persons paying away notes at a discount might, on 
suit, recover the difference. However, its failure is indicated by 
the fact that it was repealed Jan. 24, 1820. But that this practice 
was quite common at the time is made plain by an article from the 
Cincinnati Enquirer quoted in Niles' Register of July 29, 1820. 
This article says that there was great excitement at Cincinnati on 
account of the belief generally entertained that those concerned 
in the Miami bank were secretly engaged in purchasing up its 
notes at a very large discount, though, as it was also thought, the 
bank was able to meet its engagements, under a careful manage- 
ment. "If such things have not happened at Cincinnati," proceeds 
the writer, "they have happened at other places, and there is no 
sort of novelty in them." The bills of the bank alluded to were 
worth about 25 cents on the dollar in Baltimore. The same article 
states that the inhabitants of Springfield, Hamilton county, Ohio, 
had just held a meeting, at which they charged the non-specie pay- 
ing banks with a design to depreciate their own paper for the pur- 
pose of buying it up at very reduced rates. At this meeting, resolu- 
tions were adopted "to desist from the use of any paper of banks 
that refuse to discharge promptly the obligations specified on the 
face of the note," and inviting the people of the Miami country to 
adopt similar resolutions, for too much forbearance had been in- 
dulged in toward the delinquent banks. 

The draining of specie from the state through its financial opera- 
tions increased the hostility against the United States bank. Early 
in November, 1818, the Cincinnati papers were complaining of the 
scarcity of specie. Very distressing was the effect which the sud- 
den withdrawal of specie by the United States bank and the dis- 
crediting of bank paper had on prices in the Miami valley. In 
Dayton, Jan. 1, 1817, wheat was $1 per bushel. In October, 1819, 
it was selling at 625^ cents per bushel, while in 1821 and in 1822 
the price went as low as 20 cents a bushel. In March, 1822, the 
Dayton prices were: Flour, $2.50 per barrel; whiskey, 12^^ cents 
per gallon ; wheat, 20 cents ; rye, 25 cents, and corn, 12 cents per 
bushel, fresh beef, 1 to 3 cents per pound ; butter, 5 to 8 cents per 
pound ; eggs, 3 to 5 cents per dozen ; and chickens, 50 to 75 cents 
per dozen. A letter from a Cincinnati man, July 26, 1820, quoted 
in a Steubenville paper, states that at a marshal's sale a handsome 
gig and very valuable horse had sold for $4, an elegant sideboard for 
$3, a fine Brussel's carpet and two Scotch carpets for $3, etc. The 
writer adds that a man with a little money could make a fortune by 
attending marshal's and sheriff's sales. In the fall and winter of 
1822 the exports from Cincinnati were valued at very low rates, 
e. g., pork 2 cents a pound, flour $3 a barrel, and whiskey 14 cents 
a gallon. 

While the staples of the western country were at these low 


prices the people were deeply in debt to the United States govern- 
ment, to eastern merchants, to the local banks, and to one another. 
The amount due to the Cincinnati branch of the United States bank 
was more than $2,000,000. The suspension of specie payments by 
the state banks, the depreciation of their paper, and the hard times 
followed so closely the demand upon the Cincinnati banks for the 
balances due the United States branch bank that in December, 1818, 
the lower house of the Ohio legislature appointed a select committee 
to investigate and report to the legislature the condition of the 
state banks and the causes of the existing confusion in the currency. 
By February, 1819, this committee had made two reports to the 
legislature, in which they set forth the condition of nearly all the 
chartered banks in the state, and declared that their investigation 
led "inevitably to the conclusion that the establishment and man- 
agement of the branches of the United States bank within this state 
have very largely conduced to the present embarrassment of the 
circulating medium, and have had a direct effect in producing the 
recent suspension of specie payments by the state banks." In view 
of this the committee recommended the propriety of providing by 
law that if the branches established within the state should remain 
there and transact business beyond a certain day, a tax should be 
assessed and collected of $50,000 annually upon each branch. The 
committee also recommended that provision be made by law for 
simplifying legal proceedings in all cases where banks were a 
party, and for securing the holders of bank notes against imposi- 
tions by prohibiting all brokerage on bank paper, especially on the 
part of debtors to and stockholders in banks. The committee 
further suggested the propriety of providing by law for the ap- 
pointment of an attorney general whose duty it should be to cause 
the law against unauthorized banking to be put in force against all 
that might have infracted its provisions, and to inquire into the 
condition of those banks which had refused to report. 

The reporting banks owed about $694,000 of the debts due to 
the United States bank, and practically all of this was owed to the 
Cincinnati and Chillicothe branches, except about $100,000 which 
was owed by the bank of Steubenville, probably to the Pittsburg 
branch. As a whole amount due from the Ohio banks to the Cin- 
cinnati and Chillicothe branches, on Oct. 3, 1818, amounted to 
$974,000, the committee figured that the difference between $74,000 
and the $694,000 due from the twenty banks reporting, or about 
$280,000, represented the amount due to the United States bank 
from the five chartered banks in Ohio which did not report. Most 
of this $280,000 the committee judged, was doubtless due from the 
Miami Exporting company. Further details as to the condition of 
the Miami valley banks are shown in the following taken from a 
statement of the situation of the Ohio banks which reported to 
the select committee of the legislature in conformity to a resolu- 
tion passed by the Ohio house of representatives in December, 
1818 : Bank of Cincinnati — total resources $738,109, bills discounted 
$521,505, specie $21,701, Ohio notes $6,070, other notes $1,204. due 
from Ohio banks $152,082, real estate, $21,846, debit profit and loss 
$7,607; Farmers' & Mechanics' bank of Cincinnati — total resources 


$567,698, bills discounted $518,048, specie $26,000, Ohio notes $3,650, 
real estate $20,000; Lebanon-Miami banking company — total re- 
sources $166,278, bills discounted $143,252, specie $11,090; Ohio 
notes $7,701, due from other banks $475, real estate $3,760; Dayton 
Manufacturing company — total resources $185,007, bills discounted 
$111,272, specie $36,173, Ohio notes $9,810, other notes $14,140, due 
from Ohio banks $7,083, due from other banks $1,704, real estate 
$3,390, debit profit and loss $1,435; Bank of Hamilton— total re- 
sources $71,433, bills discounted $32,352, specie $15,643, Ohio notes 
$10,781, United States bank notes $1,425, other notes $2,500, debit 
profit and loss $8,732. The statement of the Habilities of the above 
named banks was as follows: Bank of Cincinnati — capital stock 
paid in $216,430, notes in circulation $230,696, debts due United 
States bank $195,342, debts due Ohio banks $13,176, debts due other 
banks $1,427, deposits $47,172, fund to pay state bonus $1,250, 
credit of profit and loss $33,217, total liabilities $728,710; Farmers' 
& Mechanics' bank of Cincinnati — capital stock paid in $154,776, 
notes in circulation $87,000, debts due United States bank approxi- 
mately $300,000, deposits $9,000, total liabilities $550,776; Lebanon- 
Miami banking company — capital stock paid in $86,491, notes in 
circulation $31,831, debts due United States bank $33,270, deposits 
$2,000, total liabilities $153,592; Dayton Manufacturing company — 
capital stock paid in $61,340, notes in circulation $96,128, debts due 
United States bank $8,729, debts due Ohio banks $55, deposits $19,- 
873, credit of profit and loss $3,099, total liabilities $189,224; bank 
of Hamilton— capital stock paid in $22,707, notes in circulation 
$23,799, deposits $16,744, total liabilities $63,250. In addition to 
the above figures was an item of $279,155, debts due United States 
bank, which probably was due chiefly from the Miami Exporting 
company, which made no statement of resources. 

A computation based on the foregoing figures for the five Miami 
valley banks which reported shows an average ratio of 92 cents of 
circulation to each dollar of capital stock paid in, $5.37 of capital 
stock paid in to each dollar of specie on hand, and $4.21 of circu- 
lation to each dollar of specie, while the proportion of circulation 
and deposits combined is $4.99 for each dollar of specie on hand. 
The ratios for the individual banks are shown as follows: Bank of 
Cincinnati — circulation to capital $1.07, capital stock to specie $9.97, 
circulation deposits to specie $12.80, circulation to specie $10.63 ; 
Farmers' & Mechanics' bank of Cincinnati — circulation to capital 56 
cents, capital stock to specie $5.95, circulation to deposits $3.31, cir- 
culation to specie $3.35 ; Lebanon-Miami banking company — circula- 
tion to capital 37 cents, capital stock to specie $7.80, circulation and 
deposits to specie $3.05, circulation to specie $2.87; Dayton Manufac- 
turing company — circulation to capital $1.57, capital stock to specie 
$1.70, circulation and deposits to specie $3.21, circulation to specie 
$2.66; Bank of Hamilton — circulation to capital $1.05, capital stock 
to specie $1.45, circulation and deposits to specie $2.59, circulation 
to specie $1.52. 

In January, 1819, the twenty-five chartered banks of Ohio were 
located in nineteen of the fifty-nine counties of the state. Three of 
the banks were located in Hamilton county, which at that time was 


the most populous county of the state and contained Cincinnati. 
Hamilton county contained the largest ratio of capital to popula- 
tion — $23,624 per inhabitant. The Bank of Hamilton in Butler 
county had $1,044 as the ratio of capital stock to population, the 
Dayton Manufacturing company in Montgomery $3,834, and the 
Lebanon-Miami Banking company in Warren $4,849. The propor- 
tion of banking capital to population would of course have been 
much increased if statistics of the unauthorized banks were avail- 
able. For instance, the following shows the condition of the bank 
of John H. Piatt & Co., of Cincinnati, in 1819, and this was consid- 
ered one of the best of that class of banks : Resources — real estate 
$87,994, bills receivable $174,452.14, drafts on New Orleans $68,- 
368.68, drafts on sundry places and cash on hand $49,096.72, due 
from individuals $17,852.61, advanced on the steamboat Gen. Pike 
$14,600, total resources $412,364.15; liabilities — notes in circulation 
$242,783, drafts or bills payable $64,514, due depositors $19,627.28, 
total $326,934.28; balance in favor of bank $85,429.87; total $412,- 
364.15; this amount was secured by J. H. Piatt's estate, which was 
valued at $626,302.35. 

From the above statement it is impossible to tell how much 
specie was held, but it is evident that it was less than $50,000, and 
probably much less, and against it were circulating more than 
$240,000 worth of notes and nearly $20,000 worth of deposits. In 
other words, the immediate demand liabilities were over five times 
the cash on hand ! It is, therefore, not surprising to see in an issue 
of the Ohio Watchman for April 15, 1819, the announcement that 
the paper of J. H. Piatt is touched with a trembling hand and that 
some shave it as high as 12^. A year later the same paper quotes 
these notes as not received in Dayton, even at a discount of 75 
per cent. However, the unauthorized banks were not the only 
ones whose notes were greatly depreciated. The notes of the Bank 
of Cincinnati were as bad as those of the Piatt bank, and those of 
several other authorized banks were but little better. In a table 
published in the Detroit Gazette, in November, 1819, the condition 
of the following Miami valley bank notes was given as follows: 
Bank of Cincinnati, good ; Farmers,' Mechanics' and Manufactur- 
ers' bank of Cincinnati and the Bank of Dayton, decent; the 
Lebanon-Miami Banking company, middling; and the Miami Ex- 
porting company, Piatt's bank, and the Farmers' & Merchants' bank 
of Cincinnati, good for nothing. In many cases, banks whose notes 
were greatly depreciated continued to pay dividends. Thus the 
Bank of Cincinnati, in May, 1819, had declared a dividend of 4 
per cent on its capital for the preceding half year. 

Meanwhile, the United States bank, instead of heeding the 
warning afforded by the general unrest of the people and leaving 
the state, opened the second branch in Ohio at Chillicothe early 
in 1818, and in July increased its offenses by suddenly ordering the 
Cincinnati branch to collect at the rate of 20 per cent a month the 
large balances due from the local banks, as has been previously 
mentioned, thus precipitating the panic, causing the Cincinnati 
banks to suspend in November, 1818, and bringing disaster and ruin 
on the people. In an attempted measure of relief the legislature, 


on Feb. 8, 1819, passed an act "to levy and collect a tax from all 
banks and individuals and companies, and associations of individ- 
uals, that may transact banking business in this state without 
being authorized to do so by the laws thereof." This law was 
passed with great deliberation and by a full vote, and public senti- 
ment throughout the state supported the legislature in its action. 
A few weeks later, however, the decision in the famous case of 
McCulloch vs. Maryland was handed down by the United States 
Supreme court, Chief Justice Marshall delivering the opinion on 
March 7, 1819. This decided that Congress has the power to in- 
corporate a bank, that the bank had power to establish branches 
in the states without their consent, and that the states had no 
right to tax them. In view of this decision the branches of the 
bank in Ohio naturally continued their operations, and just as de- 
terminedly the state auditor, Ralph Osborn, prepared to collect 
the tax. To prevent this the bank filed a Bill in Chancery in the 
United States Circuit court asking an injunction to restrain the 
auditor from proceeding to collect the tax. A copy of this bill with 
a subpoena to answer was served on the auditor. Counsel advised 
that the papers did not amount to an injunction ; and, therefore, the 
state writ was given to the sheriff, John L. Harper, with instruc- 
tions to enter the banking house at Chillicothe and demand pay- 
ment of the tax, and upon refusal thereof to enter the vault and 
levy the amount required. The officer, taking with him a horse 
and wagon and competent assistants, went to the bank on the 
evening of Sept. 17 and, first securing access to the vaults, de- 
manded the tax. Payment was of course refused, and the officer 
entered the vault and seized in gold, silver, and bank notes, suffi- 
cient funds to cover the amount on both branches — $100,0CX). This 
was carried in the wagon to the Bank of Chillicothe and deposited 
there over night. 

Meanwhile excitement ran high over the matter, not only in 
Ohio but throughout the country generally. The governor of Ohio 
did all in his power to have the money restored, even offering to 
give security for it, but he could accomplish nothing. The Inquis- 
itor and Cincinnati Advertiser of Oct. 19, 1819, printed numerous 
extracts from other papers regretting that Ohio in defiance of the 
United States Constitution had entered the vaults of the branch bank 
at Chillicothe and taken therefrom nearly $100,000. Another Cin- 
cinnati paper commenting on the aflfair about the same time re- 
marked that it "appears to have created as much consternation as 
if it had been an overt act of treason or rebellion," but added, 
"If the general government can create a monied institution, in the 
very bosom of the states, paramount to their laws, then indeed is 
state sovereignty a mere name, 'full of sound and fury, signifying 
nothing.' " 

The elections in Ohio that fall were along the lines of the 
United States bank fight. General Harrison, a candidate for state 
senator from the Cincinnati district, declared himself the enemy of 
banks in general and especially of the United States bank, which 
he said he viewed as an institution "which may be converted into an 
immense political engine to strengthen the arm of the general gov- 


ernment and which may at some future day be used to oppress and 
break down the state governments." Yet of the Ohio act he said, 
"Is it not a shoot that has sprung from its far famed Boston oppo- 
sition, and been matured in the foul mind of the Hartford Convene 
tion?" He was elected. 

In liquidation of debts in 1818-1819 the United States bank had 
been forced to accept a great deal of western real estate, which was 
taken at low valuations but afterward increased greatly in value 
owing largely to the rapid growth of Cincinnati. On account of 
these real estate acquisitions, the bank came to own a large part 
of Cincinnati, and this of course maddened the former owners. The 
entire matter finally reached the Supreme court of the United States 
and there was adjudged adversely to the state of Ohio. But by the 
time this decision had been handed down a reaction had begun in 
the state. The good sense of the plain people had prevailed, and 
they chose to abide by the decision of the high court. So the bank 
continued to do business in Ohio until the expiration of its charter, 
in 1836. 

However, in Ohio the stagnation and distress following the 
crisis of 1818-19 continued without relief through 1820 and 1821 
and well into 1822. In the Miami valley, the best farming section 
of the state, produce sold at minimum prices in the fall and winter 
of 1822-23, many of the most important articles not paying the 
farmer more than a fair compensation for taking them to Cincinnati. 
Pork was sold in large quantities for from one to two dollars per 
hundred. And it was generally understood in that section that most 
kinds of provisions shipped from Cincinnati market that season in- 
volved almost all the shippers in loss, and some of them in total 
bankruptcy and ruin. In the fall and winter of 1823-24 but little 
over half the provisions were shipped from that market that were 
the year before. For example, in 1822, over 42,000 barrels of flour 
were inspected at Cincinnati for export, while in 1823 the quantity 
amounted to but 27,206 barrels. Niles' Register of Oct. 23, 1824, 
contains the statement that "Any quantity of corn may be pur- 
chased in Cincinnati for 8c per bushel." 

In other parts of the state prices were as low or even lower. 
Thus in Dayton, in 1822, flour was $2.50 a barrel, wheat 20 cents a 
bushel, corn 12 cents, and whiskey 12^ cents a gallon. In 1823 
there was an advertisment running in a Chillicothe paper in which 
7,000 acres of land on the Big Miami and Scioto rivers were of- 
fered for 90 cents an acre cash, or $1 an acre in stock of the Bank of 
Chillicothe. A Cincinnati paper, in 1824, commenting on the depres- 
sion of prices and business that for several years previous had pre- 
vailed in the state, exclaims, "Is it to be attributed to the operation 
of banks and depreciated currency? No! for our banks, so long 
blamed as the cause of all our evils, are swept away, and our cur- 
rency is sound and healthful." The paper then points out that the 
great trouble with Ohio at that time was the want of a market for 
the surplus produce of the state. The inhabitants in the southwestern 
part of the state had access by the Ohio and the Mississippi rivers 
to the fluctuating market of New Orleans, but this was likely to be 
overstocked when the shipper from Ohio got there, especially at the 


time of the year when he could pass the falls of the Ohio. To leave 
his property meant to abandon it to destruction, to wait for higher 
prices was to incur the dangers of an unhealthful climate. He fre- 
quently had to ship his produce home again or sell it at a sacrifice, 
often at a price which would not pay the freight and charges. 

In 1825, two events aided greatly in changing these conditions 
and starting Ohio well on the way to prosperity. One of these was 
the opening of the Erie canal through New York between Lake Erie 
and the Hudson river, giving Ohio access at once to the markets of 
New York City and the Atlantic coast region ; the other was the 
beginning of Ohio's own canal system, connecting Lake Erie with 
the Ohio river. The "Act to provide for the Internal Improvement 
of the State of Ohio by Navigable Canals" was passed by the legis- 
lature by a vote of 92 to 15 on Feb. 4, 1825. This provided for two 
canals, one 308 miles long, passing through the northeastern, central 
and south central portions of the state, and connecting Cleveland 
on Lake Erie at the mouth of the Cuyahoga, with Portsmouth on 
the Ohio at the mouth of the Scioto ; and the other 66 miles long, 
traversing the southwestern part of the state and connecting Dayton 
on the Great Miami river with Cincinnati on the Ohio. By July of 
the same year the work of construction had begun on both these 
canals, and two years later navigation began on both of them. The 
demand for labor to construct these canals increased immigration. 
Cincinnati's population, in 1820, was 2,602. In 1829, it was esti- 
mated at 24,000. "The settlement and improvement of this city 
for the last five years," says an Ohio paper, "has been rapid almost 
beyond example." 

All of the banks incorporated in Ohio before Feb. 23, 1816, had 
accepted charters under the bonus law by Sept. 1, 1816, except the 
Miami Exporting company. Of the banks incorporated later under 
that law, however, some did not accept their charters until late in 
1818. These, up to the time of accepting their charters, were liable 
for taxes under the law of Feb. 8, 1815, which had imposed a tax of 
4 per cent on the annual dividends of the banks, and had provided 
that if any bank should fail to report its dividends to the Auditor of 
State he should levy a tax of 1 per cent on its nominal capital, 
to be increased by a penalty of 4 per cent in case of delay. The 
Miami Exporting company, which had refused to accept a charter 
under the bonus law, was also taxable under the law of 1815, On 
Jan. 5, 1819, the State Auditor made a report to the legislature on 
the stock set off to the state by banks and also the taxes paid into 
the state treasury by banks. This report shows that up to that time 
the total stock set off to the state under the bonus law amounted to 
$79,930.27; that the amount set off which accrued prior to the ac- 
ceptance of charters under the law was $6,251.51; and that the 
amount set apart to the state by the Miami Exporting company was 
$5,140.98. Many of the banks had failed and most of the others were 
unable or refused to pay specie for their notes, and as none of the 
banks, except the Miami Exporting company, seemed disposed to do 
justice to the state, the committee had recommended that if the 
treasurer could not collect, he should either get real estate security 
or sue. 


Under a joint resolution of the legislature at the session of 1824 
commissioners were appointed to look after the claims of the state 
against banking corporations. Their report was given on Dec. 14, 
1824. They had sold the claims of the state against the Miami Ex- 
porting company for 331/3 cents on the dollar, receiving paper of that 
bank at par. This paper was sold at public auction for 373^^ cents on 
the dollar and realized the sum of $4,345.50. The judgment against 
the Miami Exporting company was $9,570.14, which, with interest, 
dividends, etc., amounted to $11,511.35. The claim against the 
Lebanon bank by judgment was $9,941. This institution was solvent 
and able to pay, but such was the difficulty of collecting that its 
paper commanded only 30 or 35 cents on the dollar. 

Cincinnati, the largest town and most important trade center in 
the Miami valley, had no incorporated bank in 1826, except the 
branch of the United States bank. The need of banking capital there 
at that time is indicated in the following quotation from a small work 
published in 1826: 

"Cincinnati for several years has been deficient in the amount of 
its disposable capital ; a nominal superfluity of it existed during the 
prosperity of the local banks ; after their destruction, paper cur- 
rency was almost withdrawn from circulation and much of the 
metallic currency applied to the payments due the United States 
bank and the eastern merchants. From this condition of things 
the city has been gradually recovering, but its citizens are not yet 
large capitalists. Although engaged in profitable business most of 
them have not the means of extending it to a scale proportioned to 
their enterprise and the resources of the place. Money is conse- 
quently in great demand, and a high price is willingly paid for its 
use. For small sums 36 per cent per annum is frequently given, 
and for large ones from 10 to 20 per cent is common." 

During 1826 and 1827, the efifort to establish another incor- 
porated bank in Cincinnati was discussed generally, but none ma- 
teralized. Expenditures on the canals of the state, however, and 
other causes, among which was a more plentiful supply of money 
in the country generally, in 1827, contributed to improve financial 
matters in the Miami valley as well as in the remainder of the state. 
About this time the project of a state bank was discussed consider- 
ably in Ohio, and in compliance with a resolution of the state senate 
asking information on the subject, the Auditor of State in his re- 
port of Jan. 14, 1829, dealt at some length with the question. A 
little later, a legislative committee, appointed to prepare informa- 
tion on the subject, reported in favor of a state bank, to be located 
at Cincinnati and its capital stock to be held by the state and in- 
dividuals combined. The committee expressed the belief that such 
a bank would be able to keep its paper at par with gold and silver; 
that it would effect a lower rate of interest, thus enabling borrowers 
to obtain loans on cheaper and easier terms ; and that the increase of 
capital which such a bank would bring about would be accompanied 
by a corresponding promotion and extension of agriculture, com- 
merce, and manufacture. 

While this recommendation for a state bank was not carried out, 
the legislature authorized the incorporation of two more banks in 


the state, and on Feb. 11, 1829, the Commercial bank of Cincinnati 
was authorized with a capital stock of $500,000, of which $100,000 
had to be paid in gold and silver before the bank could begin busi- 
ness. The capital stock remained unsubscribed for two years after- 
ward, however, in consequence of the demand for capital to be used 
in more profitable pursuits than banking. 

The depreciation of the notes of the Dayton bank, as given in 
a table taken from a Cincinnati paper, in February, 1822, was 1>4 to 
2 ; of the Hamilton bank, 31 to 35 ; the Miami Exporting company, 
62^ to 65 ; the Bank of Cincinnati, 70, and the Lebanon bank, 55. 
Albert Gallatin, writing in 1831, enumerates among the banks which 
had failed or discontinued business since Jan. 1, 1811, the Miami Ex- 
porting company of Cincinnati, with a capital of $468,966 ; the Farm- 
ers' & Mechanics' bank of Cincinnati, $184,776; the Bank of Cin- 
cinnati, $216,430; Dayton Manufacturing company, $61,622; Leb- 
anon-Miami Banking company, $86,491 ; Bank of Hamilton, $22,- 

It will be seen that this^ list includes all of the Miami valley 
banks whose notes were greatly depreciated in 1822. The causes 
of their failure were various. Some of these banks had been erected 
on stock notes alone, the directors then turning right around and 
issuing their bank bills on the promise of the borrower and a pledge 
of the stock. Some of them had been got up for the purpose of bor- 
rowing and not lending money, and defrauded the unsuspecting 
with their depreciated paper. It is not surprising that such banks 
failed. But many of the defects and many of the failures should be 
attributed to frontier conditions. The following quotation from a 
Cincinnati paper of 1826 is interesting as bearing directly on the 
subject: "The banking operations of the West have, in too many 
cases, been indiscreetly and injudiciously conducted; without re- 
sorting to the threadbare charges of corruption and dishonesty, 
sufficient causes for their failure can be found in their too great 
success at first, in a want of correct knowledge of the details of 
the system, and in the peculiar and unusual state of things during the 
war, which betrayed, to a certain extent, even the mos.t experienced 
and veteran institutions in our country." There remained ten banks 
whose paper was current in the state in 1826 and at a discount of 
only 1 or V/y per cent at Cincinnati, in 1828, as shown by the tables 
from which the foregoing is taken. 

In 1819, the twenty-five chartered banks in Ohio had a circula- 
tion of only about 1.3 million dollars, while in 1826 the statement was 
made that some years before paper currency had almost been with- 
drawn from circulation in Cincinnati, the largest city in the state. 
As early as Jan. 18, 1831, the Dayton Republican, in speaking of the 
importance and need of a bank at Dayton, had called attention to 
the fact that there was a bank in the city whose charter would not 
expire for thirteen years yet, and suggesting that it ought to be put 
into operation again. The bank alluded to was the Dayton Manu- 
facturing company. Another Dayton paper, a few months later, 
announced that the Dayton bank, which had wound up its business 
a few years before and paid its stockholders the capital invested, had 
been revived, its capital stock filled up and actually paid in, and 


its business resumed on a good stable foundation, which inspired 
confidence and gave assurance that the revival of this bank would 
prove a public benefit. 

It will be recalled that on Feb. 11, 1829, the legislature had 
authorized the Commercial bank of Cincinnati to begin business 
with a capital stock of $100,000, but that its stock had remained un- 
subscribed owing to the pressure for capital in other lines. How- 
ever, on Feb. 12, 1831, the commissioners in charge of the organiza- 
tion of this bank advertised that two days later its stock subscrip- 
tion books would be opened, and each day thereafter for thirty 
days, within which time $10 on each share must be paid by the sub- 
scribers according to charter. This stock was all quickly taken, a 
great part of it by foreign capitalists, and arrangements were at 
once made for the immediate commencement of business. On May 
28 the stock in this bank rose from 5 to 15 per cent premium, and 
before the day closed 17 per cent was asked, at which figure the 
price remained firm. Orders to purchase this stock received from 
eastern cities were said to have contributed to this rise. A pro- 
vision in the charter granted this bank, Feb. 11, 1829, had provided 
that it should pay to the state a tax of 4 per cent on its annual divi- 
dends. That was the rate then paid by all the local banks in the 
state under the tax law of Feb. 5, 1825. But in 1831, about the time 
the Commercial bank of Cincinnati began business, a change was 
made in this law which resulted in giving this bank somewhat of an 
advantage over the other local banks so far as state taxation was con- 
cerned. On March 12, 1831, an act to tax banks, insurance, and 
bridge companies was passed, which increased the rate of the tax on 
bank dividends from 4 per cent to 5 per cent. This law operated on 
all the local banks in Ohio, except the Commercial bank of Cin- 
cinnati. The latter paid 4 per cent on its dividends under its char- 
ter, which exempted it from general taxation under a general law. 

Notwithstanding the revival of the old bank in Dayton, and 
the opening of the Commercial bank of Cincinnati after a two years' 
delay, the pressure for more money in the Miami valley continued 
to increase. A Cincinnati writer for the New York Courier and 
Enquirer of Aug. 3, 1832, says : "The distress for money here at 
present is greater than can well be imagined, and the branch bank is, 
from necessity, in prospect of winding up, curtailing. We have one 
other bank in the place, and its capital but $500,000. Money can 
be lent upon mortgages on good city property at from 12 to 15 per 
cent when the security is unquestionable and worth at least 100 per 
cent more than the amount loaned. The brokers get readily one- 
quarter per cent per day." 

Throughout the state the question of what should be done became 
a matter of much agitation, but instead of passing a bill to incor- 
porate a state bank, which should control all the monied institu- 
tions of the state, the legislature of 1833 contented itself for that ses- 
sion with authorizing the Commercial bank of Cincinnati to increase 
its capital stock from $500,000 to $1,000,000, and granting a charter 
to the FrankHn bank of Cincinnati, on Feb. 19, 1833, which author- 
ized it to organize with a capital stock of $1,000,000. In arguing in 
favor of a state bank, which had also been advocated by Governor 


Lucas, the Ohio Monitor quotes from the Cincinnati Republican 
some figures as to the amount of banking capital in Ohio in Decem- 
ber, 1833, The capital employed in the branches of the United States 
bank (practically all held by non-residents) was $1,7CX),0(X), and the 
capital of local banks held by non-residents was $l,650,OCX), making 
the total held by non-residents, $3,350,000. The capital of local 
banks held by citizens of Ohio was $1,380,000, making the total 
amount of banking capital employed in the state, $4,730,000. The 
article then goes on to say that on all this foreign capital the people 
were paying about 9 per cent interest each year, since the dividends 
of the banks ranged from 8 to 10 per cent a year; that on the $3,350,- 
000 of stock held by non-residents this interest amounted to $301,- 
500, which was carried out of the state and pocketed by eastern and 
foreign capitalists. The point was then made that the money neces- 
sary to organize a state bank could be obtained on long time state 
bonds directly from the east or Europe at 4 per cent. That is, that 
the difference between 4 per cent and 9 per cent, or 5 per cent, 
amounting to $167,500, would represent the annual saving to the 
state under the proposed new system. In other words, the article 
continued, under the proposed system, the same amount of interest 
as was then paid on three and one-half millions of foreign capital 
would furnish nearly $8,000,000. The point was also made that the 
currency furnished by the local banks was but a poor one anyway, 
because the notes of a local bank might be very good in the imme- 
diate vicinity of the institution issuing them ; but by the time they 
had traveled one hundred miles from home, they were refused un- 
less at a discount, or, what too frequently happened, they were re- 
fused at any price. 

Soon after that the bills of Ohio banks in general were said to 
be at from 4 to 5 per cent discount at Cincinnati, and several of the 
banks were reported to be very much embarrassed. The opposi- 
tion to the state bank on the part of many local banks that wanted 
charters from the legislature was so strong that the bill providing 
for a state bank was killed in the legislature in 1834, the vote against 
it in the senate on January 20 being 19 to 15. And then the legisla- 
ture proceeded to grant charters to a number of new local banks, 
among which was the Ohio Life Insurance and Trust company and 
the Lafayette bank, both of Cincinnati. The charter of the former 
was dated Feb. 12, 1834, and its authorized capital stock was $2,000,- 
000, while the latter was chartered on March 3, with an authorized 
capital stock of $1,000,000. Another of the banks chartered at this 
time was the Bank of Cleveland, and the books for subscription to 
the stock of this bank closed on April 10, in accordance with the pro- 
visions of its charter. At that time $393,200 had been subscribed, 
an excess of $93,200 over the capital authorized. The Dayton Journal 
of April 15, 1834, in commenting on this, observed: "The prompt- 
ness with which the stock of this bank has been taken up, is a flat- 
tering indication of the continued prosperity of the country and the 
confidence of capitalists in the value of the investment. The time 
for opening the books was the most unfavorable that could be, yet 
with all the cry of pressure and panic, there seems to be no lack 
of money when a profitable investment is to be made." 


Only $1,000,000 of the capital stock of the Ohio Life Insurance 
and Trust company was for banking purposes, and its privilege of 
issuing notes was to expire Jan. 1, 1843, the date when most of the 
bank charters in the state expired. Besides the power of note issue 
and other banking powers, this company was given authority to in- 
sure lives, to purchase and grant annuities, to receive and execute 
trusts of all kinds, and to buy and sell drafts and bills of exchange. 
Its management was in the hands of twenty trustees who must in- 
dividually be stockholders to the amount of $5,000. In 1841, M. T. 
Williams was president, J. M. Perkins, cashier, and the board of 
trustees consisted of gentlemen in Cincinnati, Warren, Gallipolis, 
Columbus, Cadiz, and Dayton, Ohio, and also New York, Boston, 
Philadelphia, and New Orleans. The institution was one of the 
largest in the country, and it aroused a good deal of opposition 
among those who, even at that date, feared the growth of corporate 
monopoly. It was bitterly denounced as placing dangerous power 
in the hands of a few. The following paragraph from an address of 
the Hon. R. T. Lytle, in 1835, illustrates the popular feeling regard- 
ing "this new and dangerous monopoly," which loaned money all 
over the state on real estate security. 

"The rate of interest at which they let out money is nominally 
7 per cent, but in fact (in most cases) the rate averages from 10 to 
15. For instance, the borrower, before he can procure one cent of 
money is obliged to pay the agent of this bank for examining all the 
title papers of his land that it is to be mortgaged, to pay for the 
execution and recording of a mortgage deed ; to lose time in effect- 
ing the loan, so that it will cost him from 10 to 15 per cent the first 
year besides the interest; and immediately upon receiving the loan 
the borrower has to advance, for the first six months' interest, at 
the rate of 7 per cent per annum. At the end of every six months 
prompt payment is demanded, and if it should not be made at the 
day, yes, at the hour, it becomes due, the company can foreclose 
the mortgage, force a sale, and thus at one stroke sweep from a man 
his farm for the paltry sum of $100 or $200." 

The wide distribution of the operations of this company is illus- 
trated by the fact that in January, 1836, it had loans secured by real 
estate in at least sixty-seven-counties in the state, the amounts loaned 
in each county varying from a few hundred dollars to half a million. 
The total amounted to $1,858,099 and was secured by pledges of real 
estate to the estimated value of $4,338,117. The report of the master 
commissioner on this company, in 1836, speaks of the ability and 
integrity with which its affairs were conducted, of the prudence, 
safety and_ productiveness of its investments, and of the safety of 
those holding its investments. Nevertheless there was a bill before 
the legislature that year to repeal its charter. This bill had the sup- 
port of most of the Democratic papers in the state, though some of 
them favored the bank. The Ohio Monitor of March 14, 1836, gave 
a list of the stockholders of the Ohio Life Insurance and Trust com- 
pany, with the number of shares and amount of stock held by each, 
and commented regarding the stock thus : "Most of which, as may 
be discovered, is owned by the Wall Street gentry of New York." 
This paper also named the twenty trustees of the company, adding: 


"Three only, we believe, are citizens of Ohio and professing to be- 
long to the Democratic party." When the bill to repeal the char- 
ter of the company came to a vote in the legislature, however, it was 
postponed indefinitely by a vote of 40 to 27. 

The Miami Exporting company, which had been compelled to 
close its doors in 1822, was revived and again put into operation in 

1834, but the amount of its loans, specie, capital, and circulation is 
not given in a table published in 1835. Of the other Miami valley 
banks, however, that were mentioned in this table, the Dayton bank 
reported as follows : Loans and discounts, $242,719 ; specie, $92,250 ; 
capital, $102,640; circulation $214,125; the Commercial bank of 
Cincinnati reported loans and discounts $1,481,465 ; specie, $141,849 ; 
capital, $1,000,000; circulation, $285,817; the Franklin bank of Cin- 
cinnati, loans and discounts, $1,622,234; specie, $175,152; capital, 
$1,000,000; circulation, $372,514; Bank of Hamilton, loans and dis- 
counts, $145,027; specie, $28,613; capital, $65,000; circulation, $86,- 
550; and the Lafayette bank of Cincinnati reported a capital of 

The distribution of the authorized banks in the Miami valley, in 

1835, the estimated population of each county in which a bank was 
located, the total capital stock of the banks in each county, and the 
amount per capita in each county were as follows : Butler county, 
with a population of 27,668, had one bank with a paid in capital stock 
of $65,000, which was $2,250 per capita ; Hamilton county had a popu- 
lation of 66,231, with five banks and a total paid in capital stock of 
$3,222,452, which was $48,655 ; and Montgomery had a population of 
28,150, one bank with a paid in capital stock of $102,640, which was 
$3,646 per capita. By charter provisions the tax on the Commercial 
bank of Cincinnati was limited to 4 per cent on its dividends and 
that on the Franklin bank of Cincinnati to 5 per cent. 

A law passed Feb. 25, 1839, provided for three bank commis- 
sioners to be appointed by the legislature, whose duty it was to visit 
the banks, examine their books, and make regular reports. The first 
annual report of these commissioners was made Dec. 16, 1839, and 
in it they condemned the practice of creating bank capital by the 
stockholders giving what was called a stock note ; also, closely allied 
to the latter, the large loans and discounts made to directors and 
other stockholders "almost unlimited in amount and time of pay- 
ment." In the Miami valley the indebtedness of the directors and 
officers of each bank, at the time of examination, as principals, and 
liability as security, and the amount of stock held by them, was as 
follows: The Commercial bank of Cincinnati, indebtedness as 
principals $89,183, liabilities as security $45,821, amount of stock 
owned by directors and officers $46,900 ; Franklin bank of Cincinnati, 
indebtedness as principals $43,012, liabilities as security $49,062, 
amount of stock owned by directors and officers $25,800; Lafayette 
bank of Cincinnati, indebtedness as principals $79,986, liabilities as 
security $22,003, amount of stock owned by directors $18,600; Ohio 
Life Insurance and Trust company, indebtedness as principals $61,- 
185, liabilities as security $5,194; Dayton bank, indebtedness as 
principals $5,198, liabilities as security $13,326, amount of stock 
owned by directors and officers $30,550. The refusal of the Supreme 


court to grant an injunction against an examination of the Lafayette 
bank of Cincinnati by the bank commissioners probably conduced 
to a general acquiescence in the constitutional requirement of the 

Beginning with 1825 Ohio had been engaged in internal im- 
provements with a large expenditure each year, and all natural con- 
ditions tended to a state of prosperity, but the depressed prices of 
farm products produced stagnation. For example, the price of wheat 
at Cincinnati, which had risen from 62 cents a bushel in 1834 to $1.25 
in 1836, dropped to 65 cents in 1839 and 60 cents in 1840; flour 
dropped from $8.25 a barrel in 1836 to $3.60 in 1840 ; and hogs from 
$7 a cwt. in 1836 to $4.75 in 1840, $2.25 in 1841, and $1.75 in 1842. 

The legislature made various attempts to compel specie resump- 
tion. In March, 1842, the Cincinnati Gazette was complaining that 
the resumption law of Ohio had not yet put any coin in circula- 
tion, but that Ohio bank notes had disappeared and that the cur- 
rency then consisted of Indiana notes, while distress was about uni- 
versal. In the same month a general law to regulate banking was 
passed, "designed to supersede the necessity of special charters, 
fixing general law, the powers, liabilities, and terms for future 
banks, and imposing rigid restrictions on the abuses heretofore 
practiced in banking. This law was alleged to be too severe, and 
on Feb. 21, 1843, it was amended, and a number of prominent citi- 
zens, belonging to companies which had petitioned the legislature 
for a renewal of their charters, were authorized to organize and 
commence the business of banking. They declined, however, to 
engage in business on the conditions imposed, on account of the 
unsettled state of public sentiment on this subject, and with a view 
of obtaining banking privileges at a subsequent period, upon terms 
more in accordance with their own views." Among the old banks 
authorized to organize but which declined to do so was the Bank 
of Dayton. 

Near the close of 1842 there were five specie paying banks re- 
maining in the Miami valley, and their condition at that time was as 
follows : Commercial bank of Cincinnati — resources : loans and dis- 
counts $929,123, due from banks $51,259, notes of other banks $55,- 
803, specie $35,378, other resources $586,353 ; liabilities : circulation 
$79,783, deposits $180,163, due to banks $25,965, capital stock $1,- 
000,000, other liabilities $374,005. Franklin bank of Cincinnati- 
resources: loans and discounts $963,382, due from banks $24,517, 
notes of other banks $111,697, specie $131,370, other resources 
$253,306; liabilities: circulation $22,116, deposits $251,130, due to 
banks $56,918, capital stock $1,000,000, other liabilities $154,108. 
Lafayette bank, Cincinnati — resources : loans and discounts $879,- 
850, due from banks $41,031, notes of other banks $11,130, specie 
$61,882, other resources $163,315; liabilities: circulation $34,981, 
deposits $42,473, due to banks $23,052, capital stock $1,000,000, 
other liabilities $56,702. Ohio Life Insurance and Trust company — 
resources: loans and discounts $532,622, due from banks $54,320, 
notes of other banks $17,321, specie $77,961, other resources $533,- 
642; liabilities: circulation $261,575, deposits $209,318, due to banks 
$15,597, capital stock $622,255, other liabilities $107,122. Dayton 


bank — resources : loans and discounts $48,734, due from banks $293, 
notes of other banks $18,159, specie $12,856, other resources $28,- 
170; liabilities: circulation $17,644, deposits $1,277, due to banks 
$184, capital stock $88,110, other liabilities $998. 

On Jan. 1, 1843, the charters of thirteen of the Ohio banks ex- 
pired, and two more expired Jan. 1, 1844, leaving only eight in the 
state. Referring to those whose charters expired Jan. 1, 1843, the 
Cincinnati Gazette remarked that they call up "the pleasing asso- 
ciations of honesty, sound currency, and general popularity;" that 
they redeemed all their notes ever issued ; that all but one promptly 
met their engagements, and most of them returned 100 cents on the 
dollar on their capital stock, and some much more. In January, 
1844, the Lafayette bank of Cincinnati was the only authorized 
bank in the Miami valley and the termination of its charter was 
due on Jan. 1, 1854. During 1843 and 1844 this bank was in good 
condition. It was prompt in meeting its engagements, and there 
was but little speculation in real estate and new enterprises. Most 
of the loans were on bills payable in eastern cities and founded on 
some actual transaction. Scarcely a bill was returned dishonored. 
In some instances accommodation paper was discounted and re- 
newals made where the parties were unquestionably good, but 
probably nine-tenths of the loans and transactions were confined 
to business paper and the purchase of bills on the actual shipment 
of produce, or the driving of stock to a northern or eastern market. 

The great metropolis of the state was then Cincinnati. It had 
long been the center of the pork packing industry of the United 
States and had become known as Porkopolis, a name it retained 
until after the Civil war, when Chicago became the great packing 
center. Cincinnati was also a center of steamboat building and 
received extensive imports of goods from the east and exported 
the surplus crops of the Miami valley. It was already an extensive 
manufacturing place and thousands of dollars worth of its manu- 
factured goods were annually sent into the upper and lower Mis- 
sissippi country. The pork packing industry each winter threw 
into the market a large amount of bills of exchange, and after the 
season closed exchange on New York was likely to advance ; for 
instance, in February, 1844, it was 1 per cent premium while a 
short time before it had been at a discount. 

The prices of Ohio products were very low in 1843 and 1844, 
though not generally so low as in 1842. Thus in Cincinnati, in 

1843, flour was $3.62 a barrel as compared with $2.62 in 1842, while 
pork opened the season of 1843-4 at $2.25 to $2.65 a hundred as 
compared with $1.62 to $2 the previous season. The Lafayette bank 
of Cincinnati, in reply to questions of the bank commissioners in 

1844, stated that specie then formed but a small part of the cir- 
culating medium in Cincinnati ; that at least four-fifths of the whole 
circulation of bank paper was furnished by institutions out of Ohio, 
while there was less specie in the state then than at any period for 
fifteen years. 

A general banking law was passed by the state legislature, Feb. 
24, 1845. It provided for the organization of two new classes — 
the State bank of Ohio, and independent banks — and in addition it 


recognized the old banks still existing. The Lafayette bank of Cin- 
cinnati and the Ohio Life Insurance and Trust company were 
specially authorized on certain conditions to recognize with such an 
amount of stock as their directors might determine, being re- 
stricted to not less than $300,000 each nor more than $1,000,000, 
and their circulation should not exceed $650,000 each. That the 
privilege of the act might not be monopolized the state was di- 
vided into twelve districts and the number of banks in each was 
limited. Hamilton county was allowed four banks, Miami two, 
Montgomery two, and no other county in the valley was allowed 
more than one. In March 18, 1845, pursuant to a notice from the 
Governor, the board of bank commissioners named in the law met 
at Columbus to act upon applications from banks organized under 
the act, and take the initiatory steps to put them into operation. By 
June 19, application had been filed and proper examinations made 
for two branch banks in Cincinnati and one in Dayton. Meanwhile 
some of the old banks whose charters had expired were taking ad- 
vantage of the part of the law which permitted them to become 
independent banks. The first independent bank in Ohio was the 
Commercial bank of Cincinnati, which was organized April 15, 1845. 

But there was considerable opposition to the new law, and it 
manifested itself considerably in 1845 and 1846. A writer in a. 
Dayton paper discussing the Dayton bank, an independent insti- 
tution, asked: "How has the circulating medium here been bene- 
fited by the transmission of nearly the whole circulation of this 
bank to neighboring counties and states?" No sooner had the 
law been passed than the anti-bank party announced its deter- 
mination to carry the question once more before the people of the 
state, but the result of the election was again in favor of the ad- 
vocates of the banks. As an example of the campaign appeals the 
following quotations are taken from resolutions unanimously 
adopted by the Democratic county convention in Hamilton county, 
Aug. 30, 1845 : 

"Resolved, that the corporate privilege of concentrated means, 
limited liability, and protracted succession beyond the casualties 
and conditions of individual action ought not to be conferred on 

"Resolved, that metallic currency has been tested by the ex- 
perience of ages. On the contrary all systems of paper currency 
ever yet contrived have failed, and in their inevitable overthrow 
have detailed more distress and loss, and perpetrated more robbery 
and fraud than would colonize a continent with convicts and 
paupers. Nor have we seen in the Whig legislature of last year 
any symptoms of a wisdom superior to the paper-mongers who 
have gone before them — but a compound rather of all the shallow 
schemes of their predecessors." 

When the election was over, in 1846. it was found that the 
Whigs had once more won, Gov. William Bebb, who was formerly 
attorney for the old bank of Hamilton, receiving a larger plurality 
than his predecessor two years before. And to add to the signifi- 
cance of the victory, John Woods, the former president of the bank 
of Hamilton, was elected State Auditor. 


Bank circulation was nearly doubled, and it is interesting in 
connection with this increase of circulation to compare some prices 
of Ohio products at Cincinnati for December, 1844, and December, 
1845. The price of wheat had increased from 70 to 90 cents a 
bushel ; flour from $3.70 to $5 a barrel ; hogs from $2.60 to $4.37 a 
hundred; mess pork from $8 to $12 a barrel; and lard from 4^4 to 
7y2 cents a pound. From a table giving the distribution of banks 
and capital in Ohio, in May, 1847, there appears to have been nine 
in the Miami valley, as follows: Hamilton county, with a popula- 
tion of 156,844, had six banks at Cincinnati, with a paid in capital 
stock of $1,640,026, making a per capita of $10,456; Miami county, 
with a population of 24,999, had a bank at Troy with a paid in capi- 
tal stock of $31,840, a per capita of $1,274; and Montgomery county, 
with a population of 38,218, had two banks at Dayton, with a paid 
in capital stock of $169,750, a per capita of $4,442. 

At the Constitutional Convention, held in 1851, Mr. Dorsey of 
Miami county, a Democrat, introduced resolutions prohibiting the 
legislature from granting special bank charters, but permitting it 
to pass general banking laws with certain restrictions, which must, 
however, be submitted to the people before they should go into 
operation, and the clause came within one vote of being placed in 
the new constitution. But there was a widely circulated notion 
that more banks were needed. The Cincinnati Gazette, in 1850, 
was complaining that notwithstanding the wonderful strides of 
Cincinnati's commercial, manufacturing, and shipping interests, 
legitimate banks were from year to year denied the city, which in 
banking capital was far behind other cities of her size and smaller. 

This condition was relieved by the passage of the "free banking 
law" of March 21, 1851, which resulted in a considerable increase 
in the number of banks, and this period of bank expansion was also 
one of increased business prosperity in the state. At Cincinnati 
rnuch transient exchange was purchased in the market, which 
yielded considerable profits. 

In the early '50s one noticeable fact about banking operations 
was the gradual extinction of all home discounting. This change 
was due largely to what was called the 10 per cent interest law, 
which was passed in 1850, allowing 10 per cent interest to be 
charged in special contracts. It resulted in a condition wherein 
banks seldom had any money to loan at 6 per cent when they could 
hand it over to a broker who was allowed to charge 10 per cent. 
The Miami valley bank at Dayton was one bank whose chartered 
privileges were placed in abeyance in the hands of their principal 
stockholders — brokers, who used the circulation and enjoyed all 
the advantageous part of the charter, but escaped all the legal re- 
straints, especially as to interest. The withdrawal of so many of 
the authorized banks from home discounting, along with the tempt- 
ing 10 per cent, brought into existence all over the state private 
bankers and brokers of but little real capital. They oflFered 6 per 
cent interest and more for deposits and banked on them. In Cist's 
Weekly Advertiser (Cincinnati), Feb. 11, 1853, a broker was ad- 
vertismg for note and bill discounting, and offering 6 per cent in- 
terest on checking deposits and higher interest if left for a specified 


time. The Bankers' Magazine in 1851, commenting on the insuffi- 
ciency of incorporated banking capital in Cincinnati, names eighteen 
private banks, but also refers to a "host of brokers who are em- 
ployed in shaving notes or getting them shaved ;" and referring to 
their high interest charges states that "the mercantile community 
of Cincinnati are annually fleeced out of from 20 to 25 per cent of 
their hard earned profits in the shape of usurious interest," while 
the private bankers and brokers have built up fortunes for them- 
selves. The Cincinnati Gazette, in December, 1852, refers to sev- 
eral private banks in that city returned by the assessor at from 
$200,000 to $400,000 each and numerous others at $150,000 each, 
while in October, 1853, the Bankers' Magazine estimates the 
private banking capital of Cincinnati at $4,000,000, not including 
brokers with taxable capital under $10,000. The capital of the firms 
included ranged from $17,700 to $1,200,000. The largest of these, 
Ellis & Sturges, together with two other well known and well 
thought of houses, Smead & Co. and Goodman & Co., suspended 
payment in the fall of 1854, causing great excitement in the city. 

Cincinnati was often cited as a place where it was said the state 
had not provided sufficient banking capital and circulation. Yet 
the banks authorized there and in existence in 1854 might have 
issued a circulation of at least $4,500,000. The argument of a lack 
of capital or opportunity to maintain such a circulation seems 
weakened somewhat by the fact that five banks in Indiana and 
Kentucky issuing circulation to the amount of some $3,000,000 
were maintained chiefly from Cincinnati capital, while the Com- 
mercial bank of Cincinnati protected for some time a large 
Tennessee circulation, and all the Cincinnati banks and brokers 
aided in the circulation of foreign notes. The same money that 
maintained a foreign circulation might have maintained a home 
currency. To avoid the continual draft upon them, banks resorted 
to those schemes so prevalent in former years to pay out their own 
paper so as to drive it as far from home as possible, while about 
home they circulated foreign paper. H. F. Baker, writing of Ohio 
banks in 1856, cites an instance of an old and wealthy citizen of 
Cincinnati writing a letter to the city council in which he 
states that in six years he had received but four Cincinnati 
bank notes. 

This habit had been common prior to 1850 and does not seem 
to have been confined to any one class of banks. About the time 
the State bank of Ohio was established it was generally known 
that Ohio banks had agencies in Illinois to distribute their paper 
for circulation, with the object of keeping it at a distance and 
preventing its return for redemption. The Commercial bank of 
Cincinnati had a St. Louis "agency" which became a federal de- 
pository. In 1854, the report of the special bank examiner, Charles 
Reemelin, shows that the practice of exchanging notes and keep- 
ing their circulation as far from the bank as possible was still 
common to all the banks of the state. He estimated the illegitimate 
cost to the state from extra exchange, note shaving, and broken 
banks at $750,000 a year. And H. F. Baker, in his history of Ohio 
banks two years later, declared this amount too low, in view of the 


fact that the exports and imports of Cincinnati alone for that year 
were nearly $90,000,000. 

During the three years, 1852-4, fourteen of the authorized 
banks in Ohio failed, or closed up for other reasons. Of these, ten 
disappeared from the State Auditor's reports in the year 1854, three 
of them being old banks, three free banks, two independent banks, 
and two branches of the State bank. Of the four classes of banks 
in the state then, there remained at the close of 1854 but one old 
bank, nine independent banks, ten free banks, and thirty-seven 
branches of the State bank. The old bank was the Ohio Life In- 
surance and Trust company of Cincinnati. The capital of this in- 
stitution was $2,000,000, only about $600,000 of which, however, 
was employed in its banking business, the remainder being used 
in the insurance and trust department. This company was conser- 
vative and its business said to be conducted in the most careful 
manner, while the Commercial bank of Cincinnati was classed 
among those considered guilty of some one or other improper 
practice, and the City bank of Cincinnati and the Savings bank of 
Cincinnati were considered more or less liable to censure and loss. 

Without doubt the legislation on the subject of taxing the banks 
had been varied and somewhat vacillating. Prior to the general 
banking law of 1845 the general principle followed had been that 
of a tax on dividends. And the law of Feb. 24, 1845, authorizing 
the State bank of Ohio and other banking companies required the 
banks to pay, in lieu of the tax on dividends, 6 per cent on the 
profits after deducting expenses and ascertained losses. This law 
was amended March 2, 1846, the same day the Ohio legislature 
passed the Alfred Kelley general property tax law, and all the banks 
except the Ohio Life Insurance company and those organized under 
the State bank law, were required to set off for the state 6 per cent 
of their gross profits in lieu of the tax on dividends. Finally an 
act was passed, March 23, 1850, providing that each bank, whose 
charter did not provide another mode of tax, should report the 
amount of its capital and surplus and be taxed on that sum at the 
same rate as was assessed on money at interest at the place where 
the bank was located. By January, 1851, five banks had accepted 
the terms of this act, and thus there was quite a diversity of bank 
taxation in the state. The Ohio Life Insurance and Trust com- 
pany, for example, under its charter was taxed but 5 per cent on 
its dividends, the new banks organized under the State Bank law 
of 1845 paid 6 per cent upon their profits, except those that accepted 
the terms of the act of March 23, 1850, and these paid the regular 
property tax rate on their capital stock and surplus fund. 

Meanwhile the new constitution was adopted, in June, 1851, con- 
taining clauses providing that all property, personal or real, should 
be taxed by a uniform rule; and that laws should be made taxing 
notes and bills discounted or purchased, moneys loaned, and all 
other property of all banks then existing or afterwards created in 
the state, so that all property employed in banking should always 
bear a burden of taxation equal to that imposed on the property of 
individuals. In accordance with these clauses, a law was passed, 
April 13, 1852, requiring that all banks of issue should make returns 


under oath of the average amount of their notes and bills discounted 
or purchased, on which any profit was earned ; also of the average 
amount of all their other moneys, effects or dues, which were 
loaned or otherwise used with a view to profit. On these amounts 
they were then to be taxed at the same rate which individual 
property paid. 

These provisions the banks considered very oppressive and un- 
just, claiming that they were thus taxed on three times the amount 
of their capital, or what individuals would pay on the same capital. 
Many banks refused to pay the tax and carried the matter into the 
courts, claiming that if they were not sustained they would have 
to go out of existence. In April, 1852, the Dayton bank, an inde- 
pendent concern, decided to wind up, saying that their taxes would 
have been $6,000 as compared with $1,100 the year before. About 
the same time the Franklin Branch bank of Cincinnati closed as a 
bank, and the firm of Groesbeck & Co. took its place, the view being 
expressed that the tax was much less on brokers than on banks. 

A bill to enforce the collection of the bank taxes was promptly 
brought before the legislature of 1853. It was opposed by the 
Whigs and by some of the Democrats, especially the bankers in the 
party, a Mr. Beckel, a prominent Democratic bank president of 
Dayton, being one of those active in opposition to the law. But 
nevertheless, on March 14, 1853, it became a law, and was known as 
the famous "Crow Bar Law." 

In 1854, the tax law of April 13, 1852, was declared unconsti- 
tutional so far as it related to the banks organized by the law of 
1845, the United States Supreme court holding that the fact that 
the Ohio constitution permitted such a tax did not release the state 
from its contract. The Cincinnati Enquirer called the decision a 
blow at state sovereignty, the view having been held by the 
dominant party in the state that the power of taxation was an act 
of sovereignty which one legislature could not part with in 

In Ohio, as in other parts of the country, the years 1850-52 
had been years of comparatively low prices. Then followed a 
gradual rise until they reached a high level in 1855. Thus in Cin- 
cinnati, from 1851 to 1855 the price of wheat rose from 58 cents a 
bushel to $1.62, corn from 30c a bushel to 43c, flour from $2.95 a 
barrel to $8.10, whiskey from 16c a gallon to 34^c, hogs from $4.55 
a hundred to $6.30, pork from $12 a barrel to $16, lard from 7c a 
pound to lO^c, and tallow candles from 10c a pound to 15c. In 
1856, all these prices show a decided falling off, while in 1857 they 
were about as low as in 1852. A fall of stocks in the summer of 
1857 caused great embarrassment to many eastern bankers and 
others who held call loans for which they had taken stock col- 
lateral. And on August 24th, the crisis was occasioned by the 
failure of the Ohio Life Insurance and Trust company, with liabili- 
ties running into millions. 

This institution had enjoyed excellent credit ; its home busi- 
ness had been well and carefully managed ; and its directors as well 
as the public thought it sound and prosperous. Its failure was due 
to big speculative operations by the cashier of its New York office. 


The deposit balances in New York had been employed in common 
by the Cincinnati and New York offices, discounted upon to some 
extent in the west and the remainder loaned by the New York 
cashier under the advice of a sub-board of eastern trustees. 

The failure of the Life and Trust company precipitated a 
panic in New York. Many of the Ohio banks had kept their New 
York accounts with this institution and its failure seriously crippled 
them. Almost all the branches of the State bank had made the 
Trust company their New York agent; and throughout this try- 
ing period they continued to redeem their notes. x\mong other 
recommendations in the plan adopted by the board of control of 
the State bank, in September, 1857, to enable the branches to con- 
tinue specie payment was one urging the branches, which had not 
already done so, to co-operate in the note redemption agency which 
had been arranged in Cincinnati by some of the branches, in May. 

In 1850, some of the branches in conjunction with other banks 
in the state established an agency in Cincinnati, where on account 
of the course of trade the circulation of Ohio banks concentrated, 
with the object of checking the continual drain of specie from 
their vaults, and of keeping their notes equal to coin by furnishing 
eastern exchange for them, at all times, at about the cost of trans- 
porting coin. In May, 1854, the scheme was renewed by the 
branches of the State bank. A fund was raised and placed in the 
Mechanics' and Traders' branch at Cincinnati for the purpose of 
returning to the proper bank and converting into eastern exchange 
all notes that were depreciated below those of the State bank. The 
Merchants' and Traders' branch failed in November of that year, 
however, and again the agency was closed. On May 20, 1857, a 
similar arrangement was made with Kenney, Espy & Co., a Cin- 
cinnati banking house, for the special purpose of returning the notes 
of Kentucky, Indiana, and Virginia banks. 

Speculation had so controlled the rate of exchange between the 
east and the west that the feeling had become pretty widespread 
that the establishment in Cincinnati of some sort of clearing house 
for the banks of Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky would result in sub- 
stantial benefits to the sound banks and give additional protection 
to the business community. Governor Chase recommended it in his 
message in January, 1858; the Cincinnati Chamber of Commerce 
indorsed it in April; and in June a convention of Ohio, Indiana, 
and Kentucky bankers met in Cincinnati and proposed a plan which 
the branches of the State bank of Ohio undertook to put into opera- 
tion. This movement was stopped, however, by the discovery of 
legal difficulty in the way of locating the agency of a foreign bank 
in Ohio. 

Cincinnati was then the monetary center of the west. There 
was an annual demand there for exchange, chiefly on eastern cities, 
amounting to sixty or seventy million dollars. Accordingly, with 
good prospects of success a bank somewhat on the plan of the 
Suffolk bank of Boston was organized in Cincinnati under the 
free banking law of 1851, and a contract was made with the State 
bank of Ohio by which its branches were to deposit with the new 


bank an amount equal to 4 per cent of their authorized circulation, 
free of exchange interest, and the latter was to sell eastern ex- 
change at a rate not to exceed Yz per cent premium. 

This new redemption agency soon increased its capital stock to 
$500,000, of which $300,000 was to be offered in Cincinnati and 
$150,000 in New York and other eastern cities. This institution 
continued to act as redeeming agency for the State bank of Ohio 
until Nov. 20, 1861, at which time foreign notes, except those of 
the bank of the State of Indiana, were no longer current in Ohio. 

Most of the financial trouble in Ohio, in 1857, had originated 
not in authorized banks of issue, but in the failures of private 
bankers and of the Ohio Life Insurance and Trust company, whose 
power to issue notes had terminated Jan. 1, 1843. The failure of 
this institution in 1857 removed the last representative of the old 
banks organized under special charters, with no security for their 
circulation except their general assets. The branches of the State 
bank and the independent banks were organized under the law of 
1845, which gave them existence only for twenty years. Conse- 
quently, when the Civil war broke out and the National Bank 
Act was passed many of them took advantage of the opportunity 
and became National banks. Of the first ten National banks or- 
ganized in 1863, six were in Ohio, and two of these were located 
in the Miami valley, at Dayton. At the beginning of 1864 there 
were approximately 200 banks in Ohio with over $12,000,000 capi- 
tal, and twenty-seven of these were private banks and located in 
Hamilton county. 

After the passage of the National Banking law, the notes of 
the State banks had to compete with the new National Bank notes 
and the greenbacks, or notes of the Federal government. They 
held their own, however, until the Federal tax of 10 per cent upon 
the issues of State banks, early in 1865, forced the retiring of the 
circulation of all State banks ; and this, together with the expiration 
of the charter of the State bank closed a period of Ohio's banking 
history, that of State banks organized under general laws and issu- 
ing notes secured by a safety fund or deposit of government bonds. 
Henceforth note issue ceased to be a function of banks organized 
under state laws. 


IT is a far cry from the winding trails of the Indian along the 
high ridges of the Miami country to the swift-winged aeroplane 
of the twentieth century, yet it remained for this rich valley whose 
early commercial development was so greatly retarded by inade- 
quate transportation facilities to give to the world that almost un- 
believable invention which became the eyes of the armies in the 
great world war, and which is being rapidly developed into com- 
mercial possibilities. It was just about the beginning of the nine- 
teenth century when a sufficient number of early settlers had occu- 
pied land in the Miami country to make the question of disposition 
of their surplus agricultural products and modest requirements one 
involving the problem of transportation. 

The founding of Columbia and Losantiville, afterward Cincin- 
nati, formed the nucleus of the fifth community district of the Ohio 
valley, and with the first budding of commercial opportunity came 
the pioneer merchants with the then luxuries of groceries, dry goods, 
tobacco and whiskey. As these were exchanged for agricultural 
products and furs and skins, the more adventurous farmers and 
trappers who had broken farther into the forest, made their way by 
blazed trails and Indian and buffalo paths to the river settlement in 
order to barter their products for those imported from the east. 

The stocks of these pioneer merchants were chiefly bought in 
Baltimore and Philadelphia, and transported in the specially built 
wagons of those days to Pittsburg, at a cost of from $5 to $8 per 
hundred weight. The goods were then loaded into keel-boats and 
floated and poled down the Ohio to Cincinnati. These keel-boats 
were long and narrow, constructed with a view of navigating the 
swift waters of the river, and of being poled in shallow places, or 
towed by hand from paths along the bank. A more pretentious 
type, known as a barge, was from 75 to 100 feet long, and from 15 
to 20 feet wide, carrying from fifty to one hundred tons. Some of 
them were equipped with masts and sails, and carried as high as 
sixty men to ply the oars, and were capable of making as high as 
fifteen miles a day against the current. About two trips a year 
were made by each boat between Pittsburg and New Orleans. 

About 1800 the sailing barge reached a state of development 
which permitted operation with greatly reduced crews to between 
from $5 and $6 a ton between Cincinnati and New Orleans, thereby 
greatly stimulating the exports from the valley. 

It was by means of this type of boats that the merchandise from 
the east, dragged so laboriously over the mountains, completed its 
journey to Cincinnati, if, indeed, that journey were ever completed. 
It was not unfraught with danger, both to the crew and cargo, for 
frequently the merchant purchased his own boat, and, being unfa- 


miliar with the shoals and rapids, lost his property or even his life, 
on the journey. If successful, the trip required about twenty days. 
Safely arrived, the goods might be placed on sale in the frontier 
stores to await the incoming customers, but the more ambitious 
found it necessary to seek out the settlements, then forming, further 
up the valleys of the Miamis. As the trails were only wide enough 
for a man to advance single file, carrying limited supplies upon his 
back, crude roadways were soon broken through in order that the 
goods might be hauled to the new communities. At this point ad- 
vertisements would be sent out and traders invited to ride or walk 
in to inspect them. While the volume of barter was greater than 
that of sale, and the early flow of commerce set in for both import 
and export, the provisioning of the army engaged in Indian warfare 
furnished a profitable source of business, and the passage of the 
troops led to a considerable improvement of the roadways. Never- 
theless there was but little development along this line, and the ex- 
pansion of commerce in the Miami country was materially retarded 
by the inaccessibility of interior points, which could only be reached 
by loaded wagons under the most favorable weather conditions. 

The economic demands of the new territory were such, how- 
ever, that these avenues of transportation gradually took the form 
of a system. Five thoroughfares radiating from Cincinnati were 
fairly well developed before 1809. One of these led to Lebanon ; 
another through Hamilton and Franklin to Dayton ; with laterals 
branching out through the Miami valleys. At Dayton connection 
was made for Springfield, Urbana and Piqua, and branches from 
Hamilton extended eastwardly through Lebanon to Chillicothe, join- 
ing the Zane Trace, which in turn extended through Lancaster and 
Zanesville to Wheeling. Another branch from Hamilton reached 
Eaton. Up the river through Columbia a roadway extended through 
Williamsburg, Newmarket and Bainbridge to Chillicothe, and an- 
other to the west followed the river to Cleves. A fifth passed 
through the blue grass region to Lexington. 

During the process of the evolution of these highways, access 
was found to some of the more northern points of the Miami valley 
region by keel-boats passing up the Great Miami, and floating back 
with a return cargo. The treacherous and rocky character of this 
stream made the undertaking one of difficulty, but it appears that a 
considerable amount of produce was shipped in this way, sometimes 
continuing down the Ohio and Mississippi rivers to New Orleans. 

Flour, bacon, whisky, pelts and venison were the principal 
commodities shipped over this route. In the meantime river trans- 
portation had improved and, with the influx of settlers, better types 
of boats were put into commission. A packet line was established 
between Pittsburg and Cincinnati, making the trip every two weeks. 
The boats were armored in a crude way, and equipped with small 
cannon, in addition to rifles and muskets as a protection against 

The difficulty of up-river transportation soon began to popu- 
larize travel by land, and the road from Wheeling to Maysville laid 
out by Ebenezer Zane, as well as that through Chillicothe, became 
more and more frequented by parties from the east. 


The War of 1812 impressed upon the nation the necessity for 
mihtary roads to take the place of the rough highways which were 
passable only at certain seasons, and the Miami country came in for 
its share of a pioneer good roads movement, which spread through- 
out the east and penetrated more slowly into the west. Many maps 
were made and many turnpikes proposed, but little was actually 
accomplished until more than a decade later. 

That historic highway, the Old National road, was extended 
into Ohio in 1825 and did not reach Springfield until 1837, connect- 
ing the northern section of the Miami valley with the eastern states 
and ultimately through Indiana to the west. However, in the decade 
beginning 1830 macadamized turnpikes multiplied with great rapid- 
ity. The most important of these were the Cincinnati and Hamilton 
turnpike, twenty-five miles in length, the Harrison turnpike, twenty 
miles, the Lebanon and Springfield turnpike, forty miles, the Cin- 
cinnati and Wooster turnpike, twenty miles, and the Covington and 
Lexington turnpike, eighty miles in length. These were completed 
or well under way in 1840, and, together with the subsidiary or 
lateral roads made seventeen turnpikes interlacing the Miami valley 
and leading directly or indirectly into Cincinnati. From the earliest 
days the comparatively lower cost of water borne traffic was very 
apparent, and as early as 1815 Dr. Daniel Drake launched a cam- 
paign for the construction of a system of canals in Ohio. In 1819 
Governor Brown took official notice of the movement, and in 1822 
the legislature authorized a preliminary survey which led, three 
years later, to the authorization of the construction of the Ohio and 
Miami canals. 

The latter exercised a most important influence upon the de- 
velopment of the Miami valley, knitting into it a community of 
interests and solidarity that was destined to become enduring. Built 
at a time when the roadways of this section were in a deplorable 
condition, it offered an opportunity for expansion which the Miami 
territory so badly needed. The canal commenced near the mouth of 
the Mad river at Dayton, descending the Miami valley through the 
villages of Miamisburg, Franklin, Middletown and Hamilton. From 
this point it followed the course of Mill creek to Cincinnati. The 
length of the canal from Dayton to Cincinnati was 67 miles, and it 
was completed in 1828. Later, the canal was extended to Piqua, and 
in the latter part of the 40's continued to the junction of the Auglaize 
and Maumee rivers, whence it continued to Lake Erie under the 
name of the Wabash canal. 

The canal earned $8,507 in tolls, and ten years later its income 
amounted to $81,431. All kinds of products were transported over 
it, and a thriving passenger business conducted between Cincinnati 
and Dayton, and to some extent to northern points. In 1840 the 
governor of the state pointed with pride to the fact that the Miami 
canal had netted in excess of 6 per cent on the total cost of con- 
struction. This cost was upward of a million dollars for the section 
between Cincinnati and Dayton. The success of the Miami canal 
soon led to a movement for the construction of the Whitewater canal 
to connect Cincinnati with the Whitewater canal of Indiana, which 
was originally planned to extend from Cambridge City, on the Na- 


tional road, to Lawreiiceburg on the Ohio, and of which forty 
miles had already been completed. This connection was made at 
Harrison on the Ohio state line about twenty-five miles from Cin- 
cinnati. It was confidently predicted by Historian Cist that "this 
canal will likewise be navigable during a greater portion of the year 
than that of any other canal in the state ; it being situated at the base 
of a hill which has southern exposure, and it will not only receive 
the direct rays of the sun, but will also have the benefit of its re- 
flected rays from the sides of the hills, as well as from the water 
from the rivers running along parallel with the canal. This will 
make a dift'erence of from two to three weeks in the time of opening 
this canal in the spring." 

The construction of this canal proved to be an expensive under- 
taking, costing $800,000, of which the state of Ohio subscribed 
$150,000, the city of Cincinnati $400,000, private individuals $90,000, 
the balance being raised by certificates and bonds issued by the com- 
pany. It passed over two wooden aqueducts, a freestone arch and 
through a 1,900-foot tunnel. The first boat reached the city in 1843. 
Heavy damages by floods seriously interfered with the success of the 
undertaking, and in later years it was finally abandoned, and the 
terminal at Cincinnati converted into an entrance for steam rail- 

The Miami canal was more prosperous, and the collection of 
$315,103 in tolls in 1850 moved the same historian to say: "As will 
be seen, our railroad facilities have not, thus far, reduced, nor are 
they ever expected to reduce materially or even relatively the canal 
business of Cincinnati and vicinity." It is interesting to note that 
Cist, in the next edition of his sketches and statistics of Cincinnati, 
published eight years later, makes no reference to the canals or in 
fact to any other kind of transportation than steam railroads. 

It is nevertheless a tribute to the energy and resources of the 
Miami valley that the Miami canal at all times showed more vitality 
than any other artificial waterway in the state. It was laid out care- 
fully to follow closely rivers and other sources of w^ater supply. 
The first spadeful of dirt was excavated by Governor DeWitt Clinton 
of New York, the father of internal waterway improvements in this 
country, by whose eft'orts the Erie canal in New York state had just 
been completed. There were bands of music, companies of soldiers, 
and orators from all parts of the United States. The ceremonies 
took place at the Doty lock, then about a half a mile below the 
village of Middletown, and now within the corporate limits of that 
city. Although a tablet was imbedded in the stonework when the 
Doty lock was completed commemorating the ceremonies, it, like 
the canal system of the state, has been neglected and its inscription 
is totally illegible. 

The first boat passed up the canal in May, 1827, and was known 
as Packet No. 1, Farmers' and Merchants' line. P. A. Sprigman was 
its master, and it was announced that regular trips would be made 
between Cincinnati and Middletown. An example of one of the 
effects of building this canal, and indeed one that is strikingly typical 
of the effect of transportation upon community building, is found 
in the experience of Jacksonboro, a town in Butler county. Prior 


to 1825 the principal highway of this section extended through Ham- 
ilton from Cincinnati to Jacksonboro. As a result of its being the 
terminal the town grew rapidly and was soon the second in size in 
the county. Middletown was an isolated country village without 
good road connections and most of its people did their trading in 
Jacksonboro. With the building of the canal, Middletown became 
prosperous and grew rapidly, while Jacksonboro shrunk in propor- 
tion, until today its population is smaller than it was in 1825, and 
Middletown ranks as the second city in the county. 

With the building of the railroads through the valley the impor- 
tance of the canal diminished, since its capacity was limited and 
the competition of the steam lines very vigorous. Finally, in the 
late 60's, that portion of it in Cincinnati south of Broadway was 
abandoned, and Eggleston avenue constructed, the water being 
turned into a sewer near Eighth street, and emptied into the river. 
Later, like the Whitewater canal, its terminal was leased to a steam 

Unlike the Whitewater, however, the vitality of this public 
work was not destroyed, and business continued to be done in a 
sufficient amount to justify the state in keeping it in operation. It 
is interesting to note that one of the forces most potent in preventing 
its abandonment was the C. H. & D. railroad, which had contributed 
so largely to destroying its business. This was not done in any 
spirit of affection or foresight into the future development of water- 
way transportation, but because competing lines of steam roads were 
looking with covetous eyes upon this right of way which led through 
so many prosperous towns of the Miami valley and into the very 
heart of Cincinnati. In no small degree due to this influence canal 
associations were formed, resulting in an education of the people as 
to the potential value of the canal. Finally the United States Gov- 
ernment became interested in the preservation and expansion of the 
waterway. In 1894 an act of Congress was passed directing the 
secretary of war to appoint a board of three army engineers to 
survey the Miami and Erie canal and the Ohio canal, with branches, 
rivers, etc., as might in their judgment form a continuous canal 
connecting Lake Erie with the Ohio river, through the state of Ohio. 
This board was directed to report upon the feasibility of improving 
and widening such canal to seventy feet, with a depth of seven feet. 
Great interest was taken in commercial circles and every opportu- 
nity was given to the commission, headed by Major Chittenden, to 
carry out its work. The Chittenden report recommended the Miami 
and Erie canal as the most feasible and produced statistics to prove 
its commercial value when completed. The report, however, held 
that the proposed depth of seven feet was entir.ely inadequate, since 
it would restrict the benefits to intra-state commerce. A sufficient 
water supply was available, it said, for a ten-foot canal during the 
dry season, which was not true of any other route in the state. In 
his report. Major Chittenden says that the size and type of boat to 
be used will be fixed by the maximum draft possible on the Ohio 
ri^ver, and the minimum draft capable of navigation on the lakes. 
Naturally this will control the character and capacity of the canal, 
as it is assumed that whenever the work of uniting these two im- 


portant systems of inland navigation is undertaken, it will be upon 
a comprehensive scale designed to render the ports of both systems 
accessible to a single type of boat. Such boats of not less than 
eight or nine feet ciraft could operate by way of the Erie canal. Lake 
Erie, the Miami and Erie canal, and the Ohio and Mississippi rivers, 
from the Atlantic seaboard to the gulf. The possibility of being 
traversed by such a highway of commerce produced much enthusi- 
asm in the Miami valley, but only disappointment followed, as no 
practical steps were taken to complete the improvement. 

In the meantime, having successfully resisted the schemes of 
steam and interurban railway promoters to seize its right of way 
for a roadbed, the Miami and Erie canal entered upon a new phase 
of its tempestuous career. A company was formed for the purpose 
of towing canalboats by means of an "electric mule" operated on 
tracks along the towpath. The suspicion that the real purpose of 
this company was to gain possession of the canal property for inter- 
urban railway purposes aroused the most vigorous opposition on the 
part of the waterway advocates. It was insufficient, however, to 
prevent the passage of enabling legislation and the execution of a 
lease between the state and the electric mule company. The road- 
bed was graded, tracks laid, and apparently everything in readiness 
for operation, but the continued agitation of the opponents, the 
most active among whom were the owners of water right leases, 
together with the publication of the names of the stockholders, 
including the names of many persons prominent either directly or 
indirectly with the passage of the enabling act, interfered with the 
financing of the project or the carrying out of its plans, whatever 
they may have been. The company disappeared and the rails, ties, 
and other equipment disintegrated on the banks of the canal. 

That portion of the canal property lying within the city limits 
has now been turned over to the city of Cincinnati, to be used as an 
entrance for interurbans, the very purpose which had been so earn- 
estly opposed in previous years. 

It might be supposed that this would write finis to the canal 
story on the Miami valley. On the contrary, the stimulus given to 
water transportation by the inability of the steam railroads to handle 
the traffic of the nation during the war period, has brought about a 
revival of interest in the building of a cross state canal connecting 
the lakes with the Ohio river. Again Congress has provided for 
a survey to determine the most feasible and practical route, and this 
work is now being carried on under the direction of Col. Lansing H. 
Beach, of the United States Corps of Engineers. 

Notwithstanding its dependence upon water transportation, the 
valley took little interest in the invention of the steamboat by Robert 
Fulton, and when Nicholas J. Roosevelt, a brother of the grand- 
father of the former president, visited Cincinnati and discussed his 
plans for building a steamboat to navigate on the Ohio, he was 
treated with polite incredulity. He had, however, been in confer- 
ence with Fulton and was confident of his enterprise. In 1809, from 
May to December, he floated down the Ohio and Mississippi rivers 
and studied the channels and shoals preparatory to the operation of 
his steam-propelled craft. 


In the spring of 1810 the keel was laid in Pittsburg for a boat 
116 feet long and 20 feet wide, costing when completed $30,000. He 
arrived in Cincinnati, the first stop, and was greeted by throngs who 
congratulated him upon his success, but cheerfully assured him 
that he would never be able to go back, as the boat could not pos- 
sibly run up stream. At Louisville the same assurances caused him 
to give a banquet to leading citizens and while there on board, to 
their great alarm and consternation, got up steam and actually car- 
ried them several miles up stream. The noises of escaping steam 
and the rattle of machinery caused great excitement along the river, 
where it was thought the comet of 1811 had fallen into the Ohio. A 
devastating earthquake occurred, adding to his difficulties. The 
trip was made, demonstrating the feasibility of steamboat operation 
on the western rivers, and the intrepid promoter lived to see the 
industry he had launched rise to a pre-eminent position, but before 
his death in 1871, he must have been brought to the sad realization 
that it was being forced out of the field by a newer method of 

Shortly after the success of the experiment had been fully ad- 
mitted, efforts were made to have Congress grant exclusive rights 
for the operation of steamboats on the Ohio and Mississippi rivers, 
it being argued that capital was timid and that it would not invest 
in steamboats unless assured against competition. Congress, how- 
ever, did not yield to the argument and capital did invest in hundreds 
of boats to ply these rivers and their navigable tributaries. As Cin- 
cinnati was the port of the Miami valley, the entire territory shared 
in the control exercised by the Queen City over the markets of the 
south and entire middle west. 

Steamboat building became a great industry and the most pala- 
tial steamers plied the river, lending a glamour and romance to the 
period that still lives in song and story. 

In 1852 there were 4,058 arrivals at Cincinnati and the shipyards 
were turning out upwards of thirty new boats a year. No heed was 
given to the railroads that were being chartered by the legislature, 
nor the promotions that were being fostered. But there came a 
period when the roads were actually built and when trunk lines led 
the traffic away from the river instead of toward it. In the latter 
part of the 50's there began a railroad policy, most natural in itself 
but since admitted as most unwise, by which reduced rates were 
given at river points in order to destroy the steamboat business. 
The uncertainty of river transportation, caused by periods of low 
water, aided the railroads and gradually reduced the revenues of the 
steamboats and made their future so precarious, investors became 
wary. As boats were burned or sunk by accident, none were con- 
structed to take their places. Steamboat building at Cincinnati 
accounted for but three boats in 1885 and, from the records of 
the Chamber of Commerce, then ceased to exist. Towboats 
towing barges of coal and heavier materials took the place of the 
numerous freight packets and the passenger business all but 

In the latter part of the 80's the people of Cincinnati and other 
parts of the Miami valley set out to arouse a national interest in the 


improvement and canalization of inland waterways, in order that, 
with permanent channels assured, one of the handicaps might be 

So successful was this movement that the improvement of the 
Ohio with 48 locks and dams is now more than half completed, and 
the nation is spending millions in various parts of the country. 

The necessities of war brought about the adoption of a national 
policy of co-ordination of rail and water transportation, which will 
doubtless bring back into use latent resources of the Miami valley, 
materially aiding in the advancement of her prosperity. 

While water transportation on both rivers and canals was still 
in its earlier period of development, it was recognized that this 
system had its limitations, since its highest usefulness would be con- 
fined to those industries located along the natural and artificial 
streams. The bad condition of the roads acted as a deterrent, since 
they made truckage not only slow, but an expensive factor. The 
coming of the railroad was being foreshadowed, and the entire 
valley was thrilled with discussions of the great prosperity which 
would follow the building of these inland arteries of commerce. 
Great stimulus was given to these discussions when, early in the 
30's, the Erie & Kalamazoo railroad, connecting Adrian, Michi- 
gan, and Toledo, Ohio, was put into operation. It was an unchar- 
tered affair at first, operated by horse power, but it was not only 
the first railroad in Ohio, but the first operated west of New York. 
In 1837 it was changed to a steam road. 

Although the Miami valley could not boast the first railroad, it 
exercised leadership of the whole state in the rapid and feverish de- 
velopment of this character of transportation, which set in about 
this period. The thirtieth general assembly, in 1831 and 1832, was 
deluged with incorporations and proposed incorporations of railroads 
promoted and backed by some of the most distinguished men of the 
day. The first of these to be incorporated was the Richmond, Eaton 
& Miami Railroad company, by an act of December 29, 1831, giving 
it the sole and exclusive right to construct a railroad from Richmond, 
Indiana, to some point on the Miami canal, between Dayton and 
Hamilton, deemed most eligible to "carry persons and property upon 
the same, by the power and force of steam, of animals, or of any 
other mechanical force or power, or any combination of them." 
The capital stock was $500,000, divided into ten thousand shares of 
$50 each. The incorporators were Cornelius Van Ausdal, Joseph C. 
Hawkins, William Hall, Peter Van Ausdal, Benjamin Sayre, David 
Powell, Abraham Troxell, Samuel Caldwell, Jonathan Martin, 
Robert Milliken, James McBride and Abraham Chittenden, all of 
Ohio, and John Erwin, Warren B. Leeds, Samuel Shutes and Robert 
Morrison, of Indiana. 

The second incorporation, granted on January 5, 1832, was to 
the Mad River & Lake Erie Railroad company, and showed the dis- 
position of the progressive capitalists of the valley to extend their 
opportunities into other parts of the state. The right was given to 
construct a railroad from Dayton to Springfield, Urbana, Bellefon- 
taine, Upper Sandusky, Tiffin and Lower Sandusky. This was in- 
corporated for $1,000,000, and prominent among the promoters were 


the following citizens of the Miami valley section : Samuel W. Davis, 
Francis Carr and Ethan Stone of Hamilton county; Charles G. 
Swain, Alexander Grimes and Horatio G. Phillips of Montgomery; 
Pierson Spinning and Henry Bechtel of Clark, who had associated 
with them leading capitalists from other points along the proposed 

On January 25, 1832, the third incorporation was authorized by 
the legislature for a railroad in the Miami valley. It was the Frank- 
lin, Springboro & Wilmington railway, to run from Franklin, on 
the Miami canal, through Springboro to Wilmington. On Feb- 
ruary 8, 1832, the Cincinnati & St. Louis Railroad company was 
launched with $1,000,000 capital to run from Cincinnati to the state 
line in the direction of Lawrenceburg, thence from Lawrenceburg 
to Indianapolis and St. Louis. The incorporators were Samuel W. 
Davis, Ethan Stone, W. Green, J. P. Foot, George Graham, Calvin 
Fletcher, W. S. Johnston, Lyman Watson and Alexander McGrew, 
all of Hamilton county. 

The Chillicothe & Lebanon Railroad company, incorporated 
February 11, 1832, was the first proposed to extend from the outside 
into the valley, its route being from Chillicothe through Leesburg 
and Wilmington to Lebanon. Many features of these charters seem 
pecuHar, in the light of present day operating methods. For ex- 
ample, they contain clauses permitting private individuals to pass 
over and along the tracks of the railways in their private vehicles, 
thus early recognizing the basic principle upon which subsequent 
interstate commerce railroad legislation is founded. This principle 
is, that charters granted to steam railroads are for the use of the 
public highway, which primarily belongs to the people, and over 
which they reserve the right of regulation. Other provisions limited 
the charges per ton mile by providing that they must not exceed 
the tonnage schedule of the Miami and Erie canal. 

Other incorporations relating to the Miami valley were the 
Oxford & Miami Railroad company in 1835, the Chillicothe & Cin- 
cinnati, Wilmington & Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus & Cincin- 
nati, the Cincinnati Western, and the Ohio, Miami & Wabash in 

From this period until 1851 sessions of the legislature granted 
charters to railroads in every direction, throughout the state. In 
a great many cases the hopes of the promoters were shattered and 
many financial losses were sustained. In a great number of cases 
charters lapsed without any attempt being made to build the road. 
On some roads construction was begun, only to be abandoned, while 
others were partially built and operated, but later absorbed by their 
more successful competitors. After 1851 legislative charters were 
advocated and in conformity with the new constitution, incorpora- 
tions came under the terms of railroad laws general in their appli- 

Notwithstanding the early agitation, railroad development was 
held in abeyance by the timid investors and doubting Thomases, and 
it was not until 1835 that serious steps were taken for the building 
of a railroad through the Miami valley. This road was the Little 
Miami, extending from Cincinnati to Springfield, a distance of 84 


miles. It encountered the greatest difficulties and progressed very 
slowly. This is clearly indicated by the words of historian Cist in 
his "Cincinnati in 1841," in which he says: "About 35 miles of this 
road are graded and more under contract. The iron rails for fifteen 
miles are bought, and locomotives procured to run on the road. 
The fifteen miles from Cincinnati, it is supposed, will be in operation 
the first of September, 1841. Funds are procured to finish the whole 
road from Cincinnati to Xenia and it will no doubt be completed to 

In 1851 the Little Miami was the only railroad leading from 
Cincinnati in actual operation. It had, however, been extended to 
Springfield and had become one of the most important factors in the 
upbuilding of the Miami valley territory, located, as it was, entirely 
in the valley of the Little Miami. Its connection at Springfield with 
the Mad River & Sandusky railroad, and at Xenia with railroads 
for Columbus and Cleveland, opened up transportation facilities to 
the northern system which was rapidly being developed. That it 
was patronized is shown by the fact that in 1851 it carried 52,288 
through passengers, and a total of 144,486, and collected $204,589 
from this source. Its earnings from freight transportation disclose 
that the largest part of its business was between the towns of the 
Miami valley, since its through freight for the year brought $35,000 
and its way freight $157,607. Two trains were operated daily "at 
five o'clock and twenty minutes a. m." and "two o'clock and thirty 
minutes p. m." Evidently the early morning train was the Flyer, 
as it was designated as "the Express," and did not run on Sunday. 
The trip to New York was made in 48 hours by the following sched- 
ule — leaving Cincinnati at five o'clock and twenty minutes a. m., and 
Columbus at 11 o'clock and thirty minutes a. m., arriving at Cleve- 
land at six o'clock that evening. From this point passengers took 
the boat for Buflfalo, arriving the next morning, and thence by 
express train at Albany, at which point they again embarked by boat 
for New York, arriving 48 hours after leaving Cincinnati. The trip 
was made over four railroads and two steamboat lines, but, in the 
light of present day cost of traveling, the fares could hardly be 
regarded as excessive, since they amounted to $17.50 from Cincin- 
nati to New York and there was no charge for meals or staterooms 
on the boats. The sleeping accommodations of the trip were on 
the boats, as sleeping cars were then an unheard of luxury. It is 
hardly likely that traveling was an unmixed pleasure, in those days, 
as much remained to be desired in the way of construction and 
equipment, such as are now required, even in the least highly devel- 
oped lines. In place of the hundred pound rails of the present day, 
oak stringers were used, covered with five-eighths inch thickness of 
strap iron. The first passenger coaches were extremely crude and 
followed closely the design of stage coaches, with a double deck ar- 
rangement, in all seating about twenty-four persons. The first 
engines were similar in design to those used for threshing machines 
and weighed only ten tons, including fuel and water. This may be 
contrasted with the modern 280-ton engine with a tank capacity of 
7,000 gallons of water and ten tons of coal. The speed of the early 
engines was about ten miles per hour for passenger, and half of that 


for freight, while transportation charges ran as high as 25 cents per 
ton mile. 

The construction of the Little Miami opened up railroad con- 
nection in the valley of the Little Miami river, and suggested the 
demand for a similar facility for the territory of the Big Miami 
valley, which led to the construction of the second railroad, the 
Cincinnati, Hamilton & Dayton. It was largely a Cincinnati enter- 
prise, promoted by the leading capitalists of the day, and was put 
into operation between Cincinnati and Dayton in 1851. This road 
exercised a potent effect upon the commercial development of the 
valley, as it was regarded with highest local pride, until in its latter 
years it became a football for frenzied financiers and finally passed 
out of existence, being absorbed into the Baltimore & Ohio system. 

The Eaton & Richmond railroad opened from Cincinnati to 
Camden the same year, and by the end of 1852 was completed to 
Eaton, and thence extended to Richmond, Ind., a year later. Con- 
necting links of a developing railway system were pushed rapidly, 
hooking up Troy, Greenville, Piqua and other points in the Miami 
valley, and the Ohio & Mississippi railroad was promoted as a great 
east and west trunk line from the Mississippi river to the Atlantic 

Less difficulty was experienced in procuring the necessary cap- 
ital, since the success of the roads already in operation had been 
manifested. The Little Miami stock, which had sold as low as $7 
a share, was quoted at 108, and the C. H. & D. declared dividend of 
4 per cent in the first nine months, said to be the only instance of 
the kind on record of western roads up to that time. The feverish 
spirit of the 30's, which led to so many wildcat enterprises with 
attendant losses, had given way to a more substantial belief in the 
future of steam railroad investments, based upon investigation, and 
public subscriptions were made with a restored faith that was not 
always justified. 

If railroads advanced the prosperity of the valley, in their earli- 
est period, there at length came one which imperiled it. Through 
the Cincinnati gateway, the south had offered a profitable market 
for the products of factory and farm, transported by river. The 
citizens of Louisville raised the funds necessary to build the L. & N. 
railroad, which tapped the southern system of railroad at Nashville, 
giving the Falls City a tremendous advantage, since to compete the 
merchants of the valley must use the L. & N. at Louisville, and that 
city placed a heavy arbitrary charge on all shipments to and from 
Cincinnati. Because of this situation, the city of Cincinnati built 
the Cincinnati Southern railroad, as a municipal enterprise, to Chat- 

Following the panic of 1873 there came a period of narrow- 
gauge railroad building, and these lines were projected in many 
directions, and much capital invested with the belief that the lower 
cost of construction and equipment would make them formidable 
rivals of the older roads. They were not, however, successful and 
were later abandoned or standardized. 

Consolidations into related groups followed, and today almost 
without exception the important rail lines of the Miami valley may 


be traced back to the foresight of the early promoters of the period 
of the 50's. 

About 1895 came the beginning of the development of the inter- 
urban electric railroad, which promised to revolutionize not only 
the passenger but the freight and express transportation as well. 
As the name indicated, it proposed to furnish transit between cities 
by means of high-speed electric cars, operating directly into the 
business district of the cities through which it passed. Syndicates 
were formed and promoters^waxed fat on selling the stock in enter- 
prises promoted in every direction, without much consideration of 
the cost of construction, the probable traffic to be furnished or the 
conditions imposed by the authorities granting the franchises. It 
was found that none of the existing laws which had been drawn for 
steam railroads and street railways covered this new character of 
enterprise, so its development proceeded without much, if any, 
public control. The earliest promotions which resulted in the actual 
building of these lines was in the vicinity of Dayton, radiating out 
to Piqua, Troy, Xenia, Eaton, and into Indiana. 

The first road in the southern part of the valley was the Cincin- 
nati & Hamilton, connecting these two points. This was followed 
by the C. D. & T., organized for the purpose of building over the 
route from Cincinnati to Toledo. The Cincinnati, Lawrenceburg & 
Aurora extended west along the Ohio river, with branches to Aurora 
and to Harrison, the former terminal of the Whitewater canal. 

The Cincinnati, Georgetown & Portsmouth, a narrow-gauge 
steam road, was electrified, running through the eastern part of the 
valley to Georgetown. A group finally known as the Interurban 
Railway and Terminal company were constructing one branch to 
New Richmond, another to Bethel and a third to Lebanon. The 
Cincinnati, Milford & Loveland followed the valley of the Little 
Miami through the points indicated by its name. The Cincinnati & 
Columbus completed construction as far as Hillsboro and terminated 
in Norwood. 

Owing to the fact that the gauge of the street car tracks in 
Cincinnati was six inches broader than "standard," the interurbans 
of standard gauge could not use the tracks for terminal purposes 
and were compelled to discharge their passengers outside of the 
city limits, while those adopting the broad gauge did not reach any 
other large city, hence the development of this character of enter- 
prise was far behind that in other parts of the country, where high 
speeds were obtained with luxurious equipment, in some cases in- 
cluding dining and sleeping cars. From Dayton north a much 
better type of service was furnished and schedules operated effi- 
ciently, connecting with points in northeastern Ohio and with the 
highly developed system in Indiana. However, unwise financial 
methods, overcapitalization, and injudicious franchise conditions 
contributed to bring disaster upon many of the interurban proper- 
ties. Receiverships have been plentiful and a number of the lines 
have been abandoned with applications pending for others. High 
prices of labor and materials, during the war, in many cases put on 
the finishing touches, until it is admitted that the future of this type 
6f industry is very problematic. 


It is an interesting feature of modern economics, that what 
promised to be the latest and most revolutionary method of trans- 
portation owed its difficulties in no small degree to the reincarna- 
tion and modernization of the despised and neglected roads, which 
were the valley's first means of commercial intercourse. 

The advent of the automobile brought a renewed interest in 
roads, first for pleasure cars and later for heavy trucks bringing the 
products of the farm to the markets and returning laden with sup- 
plies from the cities. Toll roads were displaced by free turnpikes 
and the formation of good roads associations forced the legislature 
to action. A state highway department ^vas organized and state 
funds appropriated to aid the counties in the construction of laterals 
to the market highways, constructed out of public funds. The auto 
trucks, taking advantage of these conditions, cut more deeply into 
the already slender resources of the interurbans and added to their 
financial discomfiture. 

In no part of the state has a livelier interest been manifested in 
the good roads movement than in the Ohio valley, where main 
market highways, built and proposed, will lead out with their glisten- 
ing trails of brick and concrete, to all parts of this and adjacent 
states, while the counties and townships with a network of second- 
ary and tertiary roads, will form a complete system, embracing the 
cities and the surrounding agricultural regions, and binding them 
together in a common interest. 

As with the introduction of each new method of transportation, 
enthusiasts predicted the most extravagant and revolutionary devel- 
opment, so the good roads advocates and the motor truck promoters 
look forward to a monopoly of all but the heaviest traffic. History 
would suggest that disappointments may be avoided if we refrain 
from an overweening optimism, and the steam railroads, the water- 
ways and the interurbans may still play an important and specialized 
part in the transportation destinies of the rich, beautiful valley of 
the two Miamis. 


SOMEWHAT more than a century and a quarter ago, a passenger 
in an airship — if one may for the moment imagine that marvel 
of the twentieth century to have existed then — in passing over the 
gentle eminence of Logan county, might have looked down upon 
a scene which gave no sign of human habitation save the half- 
hidden roofs of two or three rude council houses built of logs, 
intrenched within forests of oak, elm, beech, hickory, ash and 
maple, densely massed, except where the site of some long since 
sunken lake, or forest fire, had left its trace in a green plain, and 
feathered here and there with the smokes of sheltered camp-fires. 
Had he been especially observant, he might have noticed that the 
forest on the crest of the eminence, and along the great north and 
south divide, here flung its green arms higher skyward than at any 
point in his journey from the mountains of the east to the great 
"father of waters" in the west. He could not have failed to note 
that the great divide was cleft by the winding valleys of a half score 
silver ribbons of water, gathering in the south and flowing on to 
join the flood of some wider stream below. He should have seen, 
also, although engineers and geographers did not, that that greater 
river, fed by the well-spring of a lake lying high in the wooded 
slopes, and augmented by the waters of streams which tumbled 
down from the western slopes of the divide, was born and bred in 
this territory, and that the honor of its rise belongs to this county 
as the head of the Great Miami valley. 

But the woods concealed much, and even the existence of an 
opulent, if savage, life could only have been suspected at that time, 
from such a vantage. Sheltered by the deep foliage, lay a number 
of gemlike lakes, stocked with fish ; the forest itself was home for 
innumerable furred and feathered denizens, which furnished the 
savage with meat for his nourishment and skins for his clothing 
and shelter. The soil of the fertile little prairies produced his maize 
in plenty, and the trophies which he brought with him from the 
white man's civilization, in his retreat from the south and east, 
added to the comfort of the wild life among the Miami headwaters. 
Hogs roamed the woods in summer, but were fed with corn and 
fattened to some degree for the slaughter in winter. The white 
man's cattle and horses had followed the Indian, whether they 
would or no, and added to them, many a white captive made his 
unwilling home among the huddled huts and tepees of an Indian 

Though stealthy, the life of the savage here was vivid and 
intense, for the Shawanoese Indians, with remnants of other tribes, 
had taken their last stand in these retreats, and from their forest 
fastnesses made vengeful sallies against the white settlers of the 
south, returning with plunder often blood-stained. And the set- 



tiers, in their turn, made raids of reprisal. Struggle and bloodshed 
were rife. The white man's hands were no less bloody than his 
red brother's. Renegade white men from the south, no less than 
lawless British from the north, aided the Indians and instigated 
many of their attacks, profiting thereby; nor was outlawry and a 
love of wild adventure quite absent from those who defended the 
white settlers. Between all these elements the struggle was pro- 
longed until justice gave way to mere revenge, and the white 
heralds of civilization were hardly more humane than the savages 
who defended the hunting grounds of their fathers. But wherever 
the original fault lay, the innocent suffered with the guilty, and 
life on the Ohio frontier was become intolerable. Settlers who 
returned from distant scenes of labor, or expeditions of honest 
emprise, to find their fields despoiled, their cattle and horses driven 
away, their cabins in ashes, and their families scattered, murdered 
or taken captive, had become desperate. The Shawanoese of the 
headwaters remained implacable long after the major part of the 
Ohio tribes had submitted to white dictation, and, strong in their 
pride of warriorship, avenged their accumulated wrongs upon the 
least occasion. With them, though less antagonistic to the settlers, 
were contingents of various tribes, — Wyandots, Chippewas, Dela- 
wares, Ottawas, Monseys, Mingoes and a solitary Cherokee. But 
the enraged white settler recognized little difference between one 
red tribe and another, it seems. 

The "Wabash Expedition," undertaken by Gen. Clarke in 
1786, had as a part of its design the wiping out of the headwater 
villages, known as "the Mad River towns," with the expectation 
that so decisive a step would result in the end of Indian raids from 
that quarter. As the army moved northward up the valley of the 
Miami, Col. Benjamin Logan, with a band of about seven hundred 
Kentuckians, ripe for revenge, was detached to proceed up Mad 
river valley against the Shawanoese stronghold. The entire group 
of villages lay within the territory of Logan county, beginning 
with those near the mouth of Mac-a-chack creek, from whence 
Pigeon Town lay about three and one-half miles to the northwest, 
and Wapatomica, a Mingo village (where was located the great 
council which once had condemned Simon Kenton to die at the 
stake), the headquarters of Moluntha, Great Sachem of the assem- 
bled tribes, about the same distance to the northeast of Mac-a- 
chack. North of Wapatomica lay the Wyandot village called Zane's 
Town, from the residence there of a white man of that name. Blue 
Jacket's town (the site of Bellefontaine), Reed's Town, not far 
from this neighborhood, and Solomon's Town, farther to the north 
and west (sometime the home of Tarhe the Crane), are all men- 
tioned among the list of towns. The principal chiefs were Blue 
Jacket (Weyapierscnwah), the most implacable of them all and 
second only to Black Hoof (Catahecassa), the successor to the 
murdered Cornstalk (Wiwelespea), in ability and skill as a leader 
of his people ; Moluntha (who had married the sister of Cornstalk, 
a squaw of enormous size and so warlike as to be known as "the 
Grenadier") ; Tarhe, the Wyandot, and Buckongehalas, the Dela- 
ware. The forest foe may well have seemed formidalile. 


Col. Logan spared no pains to make the success of the attack 
certain. Detailing Cols. Patterson and Kennedy to the left and 
right wings, he took command of the central division, with Daniel 
Boone and Simon Kenton leading the troops. From the account 
written many years later by Gen. WilHam Lytle, then but a lad 
of sixteen, the facts of the day are briefly restated here. The 
Mac-a-chack towns were defended with desperate valor, the war- 
riors, of whom about twenty were killed, in scarcely an instance 
asking quarter, preferring to die rather than yield. Many prisoners 
were taken. 

The third town was Wapatomica, which could be plainly seen 
as the troops approached it across a plain a mile and a half in 
breadth. Their expectation was to meet or overtake a larger body 
of Indians, which would precipitate a general engagement. Young 
Lytle was about to shoot at one of a flying group of savages, when 
the warrior held up his hand in token of surrender, at the same 
time ordering the others to stop. The savage who had surrendered 
came toward Lytle, calling his women and children to follow him, 
but before Lytle could reach the proffered hand, the men had 
rushed in and were with difficulty restrained from killing the sub- 
missive Indian. He was then led back to his town, which was 
situated on a high commanding point of land (Bald Knob), jutting 
well out into the prairie, where a flag, flying at the time from a 
sixty-foot pole, proclaimed the residence of the chief, Moluntha. 
Thirteen prisoners had been taken, including the chief, his three 
wives, and several children, among whom was a lad of noble height 
and bearing, about young Lytle's age. This easy victory might 
have remained bloodless except for the cruelty and vindictive 
hatred of a few of the unrulier soldiers, who took advantage of 
the general confusion to defy the express command of Logan that 
none of the prisoners be molested. Molutha himself was slain, 
almost immediately after Logan's departure, by Col. McGary, who 
in cold blood seized an axe from the Grenadier Squaw, and with it 
crushed in the chief's head, before a hand could prevent the deed. 
The desperado escaped through the crowd of men and horses and 
never returned. The young son, Spemica Lamba (High Horn), 
who with the rest of the family had witnessed the atrocity, had 
attached himself to young Lytle as his prisoner. Col. Logan, 
attracted by his beauty and intelligence, took Spemica Lamba to 
his own home in Kentucky, where he was given the advantage of 
civilized education and society during a period of nine years, per- 
mitting him also to assume the name of Logan. But the disgrace 
cast upon the whole expedition by McGary's cruelty could never be 
atoned for. 

It appears that at nearly all points after the first towns, the 
warriors were all gone on the annual hunting expedition, to remote 
haunts of game, and the carefully planned attacks surprised only 
villages and food stores hastily deserted by fleeing squaws and 
children. These northern villages were also burned, as well as 
the corn stored up for winter maintenance, — with what degree of 
soldierly valor the citizen of today may determine for himself. 

Zane's Town, the Wyandot villagfe, where 9tood a block house 


built by the Eng-lish, was burned the next morning, after which the 
detachment returned to the main body of troops. There appears, 
in some histories of the expedition, a reluctance to admit the destruc- 
tion of a town where a white man was known to live, on the ground 
that Logan could not have ordered an act of such wanton bad faith. 
However, Lytle wrote of what he was eyewitness to, and the 
account is further proved by the story of Jonathan Alder, a white 
captive in one of the villages, who related the absence of the braves 
at the hounting grounds, and the arrival at their village, one morn- 
ing, of an Indian runner who warned them of the approach of the 
white troops. Alder, a mere child, retreated with the women and 
children to a spot near the headwaters of the Scioto, where they 
suffered for days from want of food, there being not a man among 
them who was capable of hunting. After eight days they returned 
to find their village in ruins, their corn reduced to charcoal and the 
block house a heap of ashes. Driven to Hog creek for food, they 
starved through the winter on a diet of "raccoons, with little or no 
salt, no bread at all, nor hominy or sweet corn." They came back 
in the spring for the sugar season, and then again retired for safety 
to Blanchard's fork, where they continued to eke out a scanty living 
in exile. Yet was their spirit not subdued, and the red terror still 
stalked the woods of Logan county. 

Blue Jacket had rallied his braves to new strongholds, and by 
1794, when "Mad" Anthony Wayne began his campaign in the 
Maumee valley, he found a new town bearing the name of the 
doughty Shawanoese chieftain. With the destruction of this town, 
and the erection of Fort Defiance at the spot, the junction of the 
Maumee and Auglaize rivers, began the final act of the tragic drama 
of the Indian. So far as Logan county and the Miami valley were 
concerned, the curtain fell one year later, with the defeat of the 
Indians at the rapids of the Maumee, August, 1795, in the Battle 
of Fallen Timbers. Even then the fierce spirit of the Shawanoese 
was not quenched, but the wiser counsels prevailed to make them 
choose submission to the white terms of peace rather than annihila- 
tion. Nevertheless, of all the chiefs who signed the Treaty of 
Greenville, Little Turtle being the only one not of Logan county, 
which established the line beyond which the Indian might not go 
without the consent of the white man, not one ever broke his 
pledge. To their honor be it said and remembered that, bitter as 
the bread of peace must have lain on the red man's tongue, their 
loyalty never swerved even in the disturbances which hovered on 
the edge of settlement in the following years, when, led by the 
eloquent Tecumseh, seven hundred warriors, painted and feathered 
for the fight, offered battle at the mouth of Stony creek. The 
Indians of Logan allied themselves with the whites and gratefully 
accepted protection at their hands against their ill-advised brethren, 
who were persuaded to retire by the bold diplomacy of Simon 

The Dawn of Peace. Notwithstanding the location of the 
Greenville treaty line, which intersected the territory of Logan 
county from northeast to southwest, crossing Bokes Creek and 
Rush Creek townships, and Washington and Bloomfield, forming 


the northern boundary of Harrison, and approximately that of 
Lake, the Indians quite generally came back to their old haunts 
in these fertile slopes after the establishment of peace, rebuilding 
their former towns and taking up once more a happy life of plenty. 
White settlement, being slow to begin, encouraged this movement, 
while the presence of white settlers taught and encouraged them in 
a more civilized mode of living and economy. Major Galloway, who 
made a canvass of the district in 1800, reported that at that time 
all of the villages destroyed in 1786 had been rebuilt, with the 
exception of the Mingo village, Wapatomica, which remained 
deserted. Zane's Town was again a Wyandot village; Lewis Town, 
on the Great Miami, was a Shawnee village ; Solomon's Town, now 
long known as the McClure farm, was then the home of Tarhe, the 
Wyandot chief ; Reed's Town, rather vaguely stated to be a group of 
cabins near the site of Bellefontaine; McKee's Town, about four 
miles south of the site of Bellefontaine, on McKee's creek, prob- 
ably the same as "Pigeon Town," where there was a trading sta- 
tion; Buckongehelas, the Delaware chief, had a village on the 
creek which bears his name. From other very early white set- 
tlers it is known that Blue Jacket had a town on Blue Jacket creek, 
his cabin being built near the famous Blue Jacket spring, which 
still flows, being now enclosed within the premises of the Kerr 
Brothers' warehouse, in Bellefontaine. (R. G. Kennedy advances 
the opinion that Blue Jacket's cabin was occupied as a home by 
John TuUis, sr., after the retirement of the chief to Wapakoneta.) 

The presence of white persons was brought to light by Major 
Galloway, also. For the most part they were helpless to make 
other choice, having been brought up in captivity, and in ignorance 
of the whereabouts of their families. John Lewis, one of the Shaw- 
nees, his name adopted from British association, was found to have 
living at his place a white woman of advanced age, named Polly 
Keyser, who performed the drudgery of his establishment. She had 
been taken captive in childhood, from near Lexington, Kentucky, 
had married an Indian and was the mother of two half-breed daugh- 
ters. Jonathan Alder, already referred to in these pages, was another 
white, found living with an Indian wife and their family of half- 
breed children. 

Alder had been stolen in early childhood from his home in 
Wythe county, Virginia, in the spring of 1774, being surprised by 
a band of Indians while hunting stray cattle with his brother, two 
years older. The brother was killed while attempting to escape, 
and Jonathan was only preserved from death by the intervention 
of an Indian chief named Succohanos, whose only son had died, 
and who saw, in this black-haired white child, an heir to his posi- 
tion in the tribe. He was taken to a Mingo village on Mad river, 
where the wife of the chief, Whinecheoh, received him tenderly, 
bathed and dressed him in Indian fashion, and he was adopted into 
the family, which consisted of three daughters who bore the English 
names of Mary, Hannah, and Sally. The two older girls, like their 
parents, were very kind to the little captive, but in their absence 
Sally was wont to tease him and taunt him with unpleasant names, 
the Indian for "ornery, lousy prisoner" being her favorite epithet. 


The homesick boy, with whom the Indian diet disagreed (or was it, 
as has been suggested, merely bad Indian cookery?), and who 
suffered severely from fever and ague, was sent to live for a time 
with Mary, who had married the chief, John Lewis, and the gentle 
treatment he received from this Indian couple called forth his life- 
long gratitude. The boy was here taught the arts of swimming and 
hunting, and when he reached a proper age was given an old British 
rifle, with which he became an expert shot. After the peace of 1795, 
he encountered new difficulty in the fact that he had forgotten the 
white man's language, and, in consequence, had failed to compre- 
hend the necessity of being present at the treaty meeting, and so 
did not receive his grant of land. However, he took up land in 
regular order, and to the two white settlers who afterward re- 
taught him his native tongue, he said that he was happy in that he 
could once more meet both red and white in equal friendliness. 
The Alders lived as white people, and became quite prosperous, 
but at length, hearing that his family were still alive, he tired of 
his Indian wife, and induced her to release him by relinquishing 
nearly all of his accumulated property, after which he returned 
unto his own, and Logan county knew him no more. 

Quite a different story is that of Isaac Zane, the third white 
person found resident in 1800, and who also was brought here a 
captive by Indians when a little lad. Two of the Zane boys were 
captured at the same time, in 1763, when on their way to school 
near their home in Mooresfield, Virginia (Berkeley county). The 
inaccurate statement that the brother who shared Isaac's captivity 
was Ebenezer Zane, was at one time accepted as fact, but as 
Ebenezer was the eldest of the family and Isaac the youngest, it 
was probably the next older brother, Jonathan, who was his com- 
panion — he being eleven and Isaac nine years of age. The Indian 
captors were of the Wyandot tribe, and the boys were taken first to 
Buffalo, thence to Detroit, where they were adopted into the Wyan- 
dot tribe, and afterward brought to Sandusky. About two years 
later, their relatives, discovering their whereabouts, offered a ran- 
som for them. This was accepted in the case of Jonathan, but 
Chief Tarhe, who was without an heir to his title, refused the 
ransom for Isaac, desiring to keep him for his own son. And so 
for nine years the boy remained in Tarhe's home, recognized as 
the chief's adopted heir, and the playmate of the chief's daughter, 
Myeerah (Walk-in-the-Water). Tarhe's wife was a beautiful 
French-Canadian woman, and Myeerah, said also to have been very 
beautiful, was their only child. Isaac Zane's life in captivity had 
been happy. His personal attractions had made him a favorite, 
and he had loved the free ways of the Indians. He was deeply 
attached to his kind foster father and his family. Nevertheless, 
when the peace of 1772 released all captives, by treaty between the 
French and English, Isaac seized the opportunity and returned to 
Virginia. His relatives were by this time dispersed to other points, 
and he settled in Frederick county, entered the local political life, 
and, so the account goes, was elected to the house of Burgesses in 
1773 (when, if the chronology is correct, he must have been but 
nineteen years of age), holding his seat for two or three years. 


Then the memory of Myeerah drew him inevitably back to the home 
of Tarhe on Mad river, and, relinquishing his ambitions, he returned 
to the scene of his happy captivity, married the playmate of his 
boyhood, and settled where the town which bears his name after- 
ward sprung up. Tarhe, after the marriage, withdrew to Solomon's 
Town, leaving the young people in possession of the old home. 

Antrim's account of Isaac Zane's career states distinctly that he 
took no part in the Revolutionary war, but other authorities refer 
to him as "a revolutionary guide," and it is certain that he was 
employed by Gen. Butler as a guide in 1785, after the war was 
ended, and that he was known as a peacemaker and mediator 
between Indians and whites. For these various services to the 
government, he was awarded grants for two sections of land, choos- 
ing, as might be expected, that spot where he already lived, the 
present site of Zanesfield. He was defrauded of this land by a 
dishonest surveyor, whom he had entertained as an honored guest, 
and was obliged to accept in its place two sections in Champaign 
county, to which he did not remove, but repurchased the land where 
his home stood, and remained there until his death, which occurred 
in 1816. 

James McPherson was the fourth white man definitely known 
to be a resident of Logan county in 1800. McPherson was a native 
of Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and while fighting with the colonists was 
taken prisoner by the British and Indians at the defeat of Longhry 
at the mouth of Big Miami. During the years of his captivity he 
was employed in the British-Indian department, with Elliott and 
McKee. He married a white woman who was, like himself, a cap- 
tive. With the Indians, McPherson was on good terms, and their 
name for him was "Squa-la-ka-ke" (the red faced man). After the 
treaty of 1795 McPherson was released and re-entered the service of 
the United States, being appointed Indian agent for the Shawnees 
and Senecas at the Lewistown reservation, a position which he 
retained until 1830. He is said to have become tentporarily very 
wealthy through shrewd land investments and through trading but 
at one time he applied, not for a pension, but for three years' back 
pay from the government for his services in the Revolution, which 
he claimed were owing him at the time of his capture by the British. 
His daughter, said to have been the most famous beauty of north- 
western Ohio, as well as the most beautifully gowned in her day, 
married a white settler, Daniel Workman. The McPherson farm 
became, many years ago, the site of the Logan county infirmary. 

Robert Robitaille, an engaging French-Canadian of good family, 
also is known to have lived in Zane's Town, possibly as early as 
1793 or 1794, bringing with him from Montreal a stock of goods 
with which he set up a trading post with the Wyandot Indians. 
There seems to be undoubted grounds for the statement that his 
store was the first to be established in the county, for it was in 
operation when the first settlers arrived, and he had married Eliza- 
beth Zane previous to 1800, while at the time of his removal to the 
Ludlow district south of Bellefontaine, they had two sons. The 
legend that John Gunn had a tavern on the Ludlow road, and that 
Robitaille had a store near this tavern in 1800, can have no foun- 


dation, for the Ludlow line was not surveyed until 1800, did not 
immediately become a route, and the Gunn tavern at that place 
was not licensed until 1805, which was the actual date of Robitaille's 
removal thither from Zane's Town. Both store and tavern had a 
brief existence, the land company of which Gunn was agent deciding 
that a tavern at another point (Belleville) would be more profit- 
able, and sell land faster for them. The chief result of the tavern 
settlement on the Ludlow line had been the populating of a lonely 
little burying ground in which the merchant Robitaille reposed 
with several other early settlers, among them some of the Moores. 
Gunn closed his tavern in 1806, and settled west of Bellefontaine 
(or its site), where he opened a stone quarry and built the first 
stone residence in the county, a structure long pointed out as a 
landmark. Robitaille's young widow left with two little boys, 
James and Robert, jr., afterward married James M. Reed. At her 
death, relatives from Montreal came and took the boys to Canada, 
where they were educated and rose to distinction. 

There is a claim that Simon Kenton, the doughty hero of a 
hundred hairbreadth escapes from death at the hands of the Indians, 
came back to these retreats as early as 1800, drawn, it may be 
inferred, by the charm which they possessed even in danger and 
captivity to the very scenes where he had possibly more than once 
run the gauntlet, or momentarily expected to have the fagots lighted 
at his feet, in the days of his daring youth. He is said to have tar- 
ried a while in the neighborhood of the Zanes, who had been his 
friends in former times, and later took up permanent residence near 
"New Jerusalem," where he rounded out his Hfe in the pursuits of 
peace, always an honored counselor in questions between the Indian 
and settler and able to keep the good will of both. Whatever may 
be the truth in regard to Simon Kenton's early exploits and his 
connection with the outlaw, Simon Girty, and it is probable that 
he was misled for a time by the glamour which makes a hero of 
such a desperado in the eyes of imaginative youth, it is none the 
less true that he was a welcome and valuable presence among the 
settlers of Logan county, which still proudly claims him as one 
of its sons. In recognition of his service, military and otherwise, 
to the government through twenty years of almost constant strug- 
gle, he was awarded a pension in his old age. His sons and daugh- 
ters married into the best families among the settlers, whose earliest 
arrival he is believed to have antedated by one year. 

Margaret Moore, the white wife of Blue Jacket, had returned 
to her own people long before the period of conflict in which her 
husband was so prominent a figure. She was stolen from her home 
in Pennsylvania (or Virginia) when a child of nine years, carried 
into captivity but well treated, as were many captive white chil- 
dren, and married to the young chief. Blue Jacket, when she arrived 
at womanhood. Claiming to be still devotedly attached to him, she 
responded to the entreaties of her relatives and paid them a visit 
after the peace of 1772, expecting to return. Suspecting the out- 
come of the visit, Blue Jacket kept their son, Joseph, with him, for 
surety. The Moores would not permit their daughter to leave 
them again, and Margaret's daughter, Nancy, afterward the wife of 


James Stewart, was born in Virginia, and never permitted to see 
the face of an Indian "except," as Mrs. Sarah M. Moore wrote in 
1872 (Antrim's Hist.), "when she looked in a mirror," until 1805, 
when she came to Logan county with her husband and settled 
on a section of land which had been granted near Lewistown. Mrs. 
Moore goes on to say that the mother, Margaret, was once a guest 
at the Moore home in company of her daughter, the two women 
presenting a great contrast, the mother being a handsome elderly 
lady, while Mrs. Stewart had decidedly Indian features and was 
badly marked with smallpox. The Indian son, Joseph, came to 
visit his mother about 1812. Reared in the manners and customs 
of the half-civilized aborigines, he was most unattractive, and 
presently disappeared, probably to enlist with the British in the 
War of 1812. Of Nancy Stewart's four children, none married, the 
race of Blue Jacket thus becoming extinct. The Stewarts were 
buried in the cemetery of Muddy Run church, below West Liberty. 

The Day of the Settler . 

Previous to and accompanying the date of first settlement, the 
presence of white "squatters" is a possibility, but these should 
not be confused with those who came to find homes. So far as is 
known, the white persons and families mentioned heretofore con- 
stituted the entire white population, when, at the opening of the 
new century, the Logan county of the future lay, its fertile acres 
awaiting that place in the sun which only the white man's methods 
could give it. Its wealth was only half suspected. Its magnificent 
timber, in the absence of transportation facilities, was regarded as 
an incumbrance to lands which promised rich agricultural results. 
Its immense deposits of fine building and paving gravel and sand, 
its beds of marl, and its vast stores of limestone, exposed by glacial 
action and remote upheaval, to easy quarrying, were untouched. 
Its very geography was incomplete, and its peculiar topography 
as well as its high altitude unrecognized. A statement that the 
summit of all Ohio was to be found within its borders would have 
been received at that time, and for more than half a century after- 
ward, with incredulity. That the Great Miami owed its origin 
to sources contained in the same territory would have been scouted 
in like manner — and until a very recent date — so positively had 
the early geographers ascribed it to the northern watershed. Nor 
was the altitude of the original water level of Indian Lake yet 
known to engineers, though afterward utilized as a reservoir for 
the Miami canal, but means of the state dam, since which it has 
become the largest body of natural water between Lake Erie and 
the Ohio river. 

Water power and water supply, afforded by its rapid streams 
and its multiude of pure springs added to the prospects for farm- 
ing, however, and it was to no uncertainty that the early home- 
seekers from the south and east bent their steps. 

It was a December sun, smiling wanly down on a landscape 
white with snow, which witnessed the arrival in this land of prom- 
ise of the first overland emigrants, Joe Sharp, his wife, Phoebe, and 


three children, Achsa, the oldest daughter ; Joshua, their only son, 
and Sarah, the youngest child. Accompanying them was Mrs. 
Sharp's young brother, Carlisle Haines. The journey was made with 
a team of four horses, but whether by vehicle is not known. But 
we are told that the first wheeled vehicle of any description did not 
enter the county until two or three years later than the Sharp family, 
so that if there was a vehicle at all it could only have been a "drag" 
or mud sled. They brought with them all their supplies for the 
winter that lay ahead of them. The day was Christmas, 1801. By 
nightfall their camp had been cleared and their first rude cabin con- 
structed from the logs that had been felled that day. 

The presence of dead bees lying on the snow led, also the same 
day, to the discovery of four "bee trees," a variety of Christmas tree 
which even a Quaker family must have approved, and the bounty 
of the bees was added to the stock of provisions in the little log 
cabin. Backed by health and imbued with hardy courage, the 
pioneers who came so well provided as these were already wealthy. 
Not every white settler who braved the wilderness in search of a 
spot to call his own, came with hands so full. 

By the opening of spring, 1802, sufficient space had been cleared 
for planting the first corn crop, and four acres were devoted to 
setting out an apple orchard, the first in the county. Mrs. Sharp 
had brought from Chillicothe a sapling pear tree, which she had 
used as a riding switch on the way to the new home on the Darby, 
and this was set out beside the cabin door, where it took root and 
survived in a bearing condition as long as the apple orchard — a 
period of seventy to seventy-five years. 

The Sharp family were Quakers, as has been intimated, native 
in New Jersey, but of later residence in Virginia, from whence 
they came to try their fortunes in a newer field. Following them, 
in the years 1802-3-4-5 came relatives and acquaintances, also 
Quakers, forming a nucleus around which gathered many others 
of the same worthy sect, a splendid foundation for the building of a 
new community. The first of these were Thomas and Esther Antrim, 
Esther being a daughter of the Sharps. Thomas was a blacksmith, 
and doubtless entitled to be recorded as the first of his ancient and 
honorable calling to settle in this new country. He was also a 
Quaker preacher of much ability, and he took an active part in the 
organization and building of the first Quaker church, which was 
the first church of any name to be erected in the wilds of Logan. 
A school was also conducted in the same (log) building, and nearby 
was established that pathetic necessity, the first burying ground. 

Daniel, the son of Thomas and Esther Antrim, is stated author- 
itatively to be the first white child born among the incoming settlers, 
bu± his title has been disputed by another claimant in the person 
of a daughter born to the Sharps. It might be safe to say that 
Daniel Antrim was the first white boy born in the county, and 
that his very young aunt was the first white girl, were it not that 
a daughter of the Inskeeps contests this latter claim. 

It is beyond the scope and purpose of this chapter to follow 
minutely the indivi'l.ual composition and genealogy of each settle- 


ment, nor is such detail necessary to a clear story of local develop- 
ment, although, in a larger work, merely to have been among the 
"first settlers" is ample cause for the immortalization of names. 
But from time to time certain strong characters or groups must be 
projected on the screen in the telling of Logan's story, in such hght 
as they were vital factors in the life of the infant commonwealth. 
It is but just to say at this point that it was not individuals, how- 
ever, but the whole pioneer body, men and women, from whom 
arose the social structure of today. Upon that foundation, built 
with successive acquisitions of enduring value, cemented by mar- 
riage bonds weaving intricately but clearly throughout the fabric 
of its walls, the Logan county of today stands like one family, and 
that family like its sturdy forebears, "All American." 

Beginning with the early spring of 1802, settlement began to 
occur quite generally all over the county, wherever traces of former 
occupation by Indians or their white associates survived, or where 
the already mentioned forerunners had planted their cabins. The 
Indians may be said to have pointed the way, having so thorough 
a knowledge of the advantages of different localities. Particularly 
at Zane's Town, the oldest and most familiar of the Indian towns, 
numerous Quaker families grouped about the headwaters of Mad 
river, while still others followed down the fertile valley to the 
Mac-a-chack, forming new groups in the neighborhood of West 
Liberty. To the central and western parts, attracted by the prox- 
imity of the McPhersons and others, came settlers of equal mettle, 
all hastening to avail themselves of the rich lands of which such 
marvelous accounts had been sent "back home." The extreme west 
and north sections were, perhaps, a little later than the others to 
attract a rush of settlers — partly on account of the Indian reserva- 
tion, and the remote and lonely position at the time — yet there, 
too, not a few of the "first families" located in quite early years. 

The tide of immigration, once started, set steadily, if not with 
spectacular rapidity, overspreading gradually all the territory not 
reserved to the Indians, who, by the way, did not retire from the 
white man's neighborhood with noticeable haste. Not many of the 
first settlers came here under the influence of "emigration fever," 
however, but with carefullly calculated preparation and foreknowl- 
edge of the conditions they were to meet. They were pioneers born 
and bred, and almost without exception the children of parents who 
had left the older civilization of the Atlantic colonies or states for 
frontier life in Virginia, Maryland, and Kentucky, and the Ohio 
valley on the north, and they had doubtless imbibed a love for virgin 
fields of effort as they grew up. They were ready in spirit to 
encounter whatever difficulties the pioneer life presented in this 
new country. Its hardships were accepted as a matter of course, 
and the emigration was voluntary and eager. Nor were all the 
refinements to which they were heirs in the eastern centres left 
behind them in these successive migrations, for refinement lies 
deeper than material belongings. Religion, education, and the 
skilled hand were in their stock of implements, and high aspiration 
and the energy which is required to attain high objects. With these 
they wrought for themselves new lares and penates, and from the 


logs of the forest primeval reared themselves new temples of wor- 
ship and of learning-. 

At Zane's Town, early to feel the impulse of immigration, the 
family of Isaac Zane, with its sons and daughters-in-law, already 
made the nucleus of a town, in the settlers' sense, when the first 
newcomers arrived. The Zanes were a notable race of men wher- 
ever the name appears in colonial records. The grandfather of 
Isaac, who came to America from England (the family originated 
in Denmark), with William Penn, left his mark on the city of 
brotherly love in one of its streets, which bears the name of Zane. 
Ebenezer Zane, the eldest brother of Isaac, had taken as deep root 
in the Scioto valley, while Isaac himself, while yet a captive in the 
wilderness, had merely by force of personality impressed the name 
of Zane indelibly on the Indian village which sheltered him. Isaac 
and his wife were, from the first, powerful instruments in promoting 
friendliness between the Indians and the whites. Their children, 
three sons and four daughters, were : William, Ebenezer and Isaac, 
Jr., and Nancy, Elizabeth, Kitty and Sally. Of the sons, the names 
of whose helpmates are not disclosed, the first is William, who 
removed, in 1820, to the Upper Sandusky, and became leading 
counselor for the Wyandot Indians; Ebenezer, who built the one- 
story log part of the house now known as the McCormick house, 
in 1804. (This is the oldest house now standing either in the village 
or the county.) The two-story part was added in or near 1814. 
Ebenezer removed to Wyandot county in 1832. Isaac, Jr., by his 
father's will, settled on the farm afterward owned by E. O. Wicker- 
sham, near "Wickersham's Corners." The house, still standing, 
was a fine residence for the times in which it was built, and be- 
came known as "Zane Mansion." It was constructed by a man 
named Bishop, who received for his compensation a farm, which is 
now owned by the Pennock estate. Isaac also removed to Wyandot 
county in the thirties, dying there. 

Of the daughters, Nancy, the oldest, had made a visit, about 
the date of 1796-7, to her grandfather, Tarhe, who was at the time 
living in the vicinity of Lancaster, Ohio, and while there had met 
her fate, a happy one, in the person of William McColloch, who was 
assisting her uncle, Ebenezer Zane, Sr., in cutting the early thor- 
oughfare known as "Zane Trace." William and Nancy were mar- 
ried in 1797, and did not come to Zane's Town to live until 1803. 
when their son, Noah Zane McColloch, was five years old. (Little 
Noah was already distinguished as the first white child born in the 
village of Zanesville.) It may be told that the Zanes and McCol- 
lochs had long been neighbors and friends in the Culpeper vicinity 
in Virginia, and that the marriage of William and Nancy v^fas the 
second tie of wedlock between different branches of the family. 
Solomon and Samuel McCulloch arrived to settle permanently in 
Zane's Town in the same year (1803), bringing their families. 

Kitty Zane married Alexander Long, who came very early to 
the village, and their part of the Zane estate lay on the south side 
of the road leading to Bellefontaine (then still Blue Jacket's Town), 
while that of her brother, Ebenezer, jr., lay on the north. These 
two tracts, with a few scattered houses and the store of Lanson 


Curtis (successor to Robert Robitaille), the man who imported the 
"first wheeled vehicle" into Logan county, comprised the village of 
Zane's Town in 1815. In 1819 it was "layed out," as quaintly 
stated, by joint agreement of Zane and Long, who rechristened it 
"Zanesfield." Three additions have since been made to this oldest 
town in Logan county, and first of all new world towns to bear 
the name of Zane. 

Sally Zane married Robert Armstrong, who was instrumental 
in discovering the real headspring of the Scioto river, for which 
advantage to the Virginia Military Surveys Gen. Arthur deeded to 
him one hundred acres in the southeastern corner of the increase 
of territory gained by the relocation of the Ludlow line north of 
the Greenville treaty line. 

Elizabeth Zane, who, after the death of her first husband, 
Robert Robitaille, married James M. Reed, died about 1819 or 1820. 
leaving a young daughter, as well as the two Robitaille boys. 

Job Sharp had, before the date 1803, built on his own farm on 
Darby creek a small mill operated by water power obtained from 
two fine springs which he united in a headgate. Very rude and 
primitive the mill was, and designed for the use of his own family, 
but it produced a meal that was far superior to the grits which the 
settlers had thus far produced for themselves by pounding corn 
between stones, or by using a boulder for a pestle with a hollowed 
stump for a mortar, so the fame of "Sharp's Mill" spread rapidly 
and settlers came from far and near to patronize it. 

But, closely following the Sharp mill, William McColloch, who 
settled with Nancy a little south of the village at Zane's Town, had 
built a mill expressly for public patronage, the first real mill in the 
county, distinguished by a millrace one mile long, traces of which 
may still be seen. 

In 1812, William McColloch organized a company of volun- 
teers to serve the country in the war with Great Britain. He 
furnished the necessary horses and cattle, and maintenance for the 
same without remuneration, and, at the head of his scouts, joined 
Gen, Hull at Belleville. He was killed in the defeat of Brown- 
town, the site of Detroit, when the British were commanded by 
Gen. Brock and the Indians by Tecumseh. There is a story that 
Tecumseh commanded McColloch's heart to be eaten by his braves, 
to imbue them with the courage of the valiant pioneer soldier. His 
body lies in an unknown spot. Nancy, his widow, a few years 
later (1816) built a school house and employed a teacher for it, 
the whole being a free offering in the interest of education. This 
was the first free school in Logan county. Nancy died in 1848 and 
was buried, by her own request, in the orchard of her home farm. 

Solomon McColloch at once entered actively into the affairs 
of the settlements, after his arrival in Zane's Town, his marked 
ability making him valuable in many lines. When, fifteen years 
later, it became necessary to choose a site for the county seat of 
Logan, he was appointed by the court to be the first director of the 
new town. He it was who received the deeds from the original 
owners, laid out the town, after the survey, into its original six- 
teen squares, and subdivided these into lots which he brought to 


public sale. One of his daughters married Miller Kenton, a son of 
Gen. Simon Kenton, and a sister became the wife of James M. 
Workman, one of whose daughters married Simon Kenton, jr. 

Samuel McColloch was an officer in William McColloch's com- 
pany in the war of 1812, and his son, George, was also a member 
of the same band of scouts. Both survived the war, the father hav- 
ing lost an arm, becoming thereby one of the early pensioners of 
the government in Logan county. The son, who was but fifteen 
years of age when the family located in Logan county, married the 
daughter of George Henry of Culpeper, Virginia, in 1809, the 
Henrys being also pioneers here. George McColloch became one 
of the earliest Baptist ministers in the county, and was a pastor 
of old Tharp's Run Baptist church. He spent an honored life, 
known to the whole county, and attained the grand old age of 
ninety-six years, dying universally mourned in 1886. 

The year 1806, once accepted as the year of first settlement, 
was, in fact, the date of a wave of immigration into Champaign 
county proper, a part of which wave overflowed into what was 
afterward set apart as Logan. This group came from the Western 
Reserve, and did not differ essentially in the character of its per- 
sonnel from the contingent which preceded it, a goodly community, 
indeed, and though widely scattered, of remarkable unity of aim 
and sympathy. No better idea can be formed of the population 
at this time than is briefly conveyed in the election list of 1806, the 
occasion of the first election ordered in "Zane township," which 
then comprised the whole of Logan county, as given in the inti- 
mate little volume of Joshua Antrim, published in 1872, and now, 
it is to be regretted, nearly vanished from the bookshelves of the 
county. Quoting the list in full: 

"Judges, James McPherson, George M. Bennett, Thomas 

"Clerks, Thomas Davis, Henry Shaw. 

"Certified by William McColloch, J. P. 

"Names of Electors [the spelling of many names is crude] : 
Jiles Chambers, Isaac Zane, John Stephenson, William McCloud, 
Matthew Cavanaugh, Abner Cox, Alexander Suter, John Tucker, 
William C. Dagger, John Fillis, sen. [Tullis], George Bennett, 
Thomas Davis, Daniel Phillips, Thomas Antrim, James McPher- 
son, John Provolt, Job Sharp, Jeremiah Stansbury, Samuel McCol- 
loch, Edward Tatman, James Frail, William McColloch, Isaac Tits- 
worth, Arthur McWaid, John Lodwork, Henry Shaw, Carlisle 
Haines, Samuel Sharp, John Sharp, Charles McLain, John Tills 
[Tullis] jr., Daniel Tucker." 

Among the candidates for election were Daniel McKinnon, for 
sherifif ; Solomon McColloch, for commissioner, and William Powell, 
for coroner. Other names entered in the county records previous 
to 1812, include the Inskeeps, Reames, Garwoods, Euans, Outlands, 
Newells, Blacks, Ballingers, Curls, Moots, Randalls, and Dr. John 
Elbert, who came in 1809. When peace was permanently established 
after the war of 1812, immigration became so rapid that it is only 
possible to mention those who became most prominent in th^ 


development of the country and the building of towns and indus- 

During all the years of settlement, one figure, quaint, fantastic, 
yet unobtrusive, had become familiar to every accessible part of the 
country. Even where conditions seemed to defy access, he came 
and went, ministering, self-appointed, to the welfare of the wilder- 
ness and its pioneers. This was Jonathan Chapman, "Johnny 
Appleseed," who was neither settler nor homeseeker, who had, in 
fact, no home, but who for forty years or more traversed the 
valleys of Ohio and Indiana, planting apple orchards, asking no 
compensation from whomsoever would suffer his service and his 
trees. He was a native of New England, and a Swedenborgian in 
religious faith, and he preached his doctrines wherever he found 
a listener. He also endeavored to live up to the Scriptures, which 
he interpreted with a literalness which caused him to be regarded 
by the average observer as mentally unbalanced. This gentle and 
kindly old itinerant, however, merely practiced (a policy as unusual 
then as it is now) what he preached, and the worst that should be 
said of him is that he was consistent. Savage and settler alike 
respected him, when once they knew him ; little children loved him, 
and rejoiced when he made his rounds ; in all his life he inspired fear 
in no one but that solitary German backwoodsman who met him 
suddenly in the woods, attired in his familiar rags and tatters, and 
found it a fearsome sight. But his orchards were, as he intended, 
a blessing, and left the wilderness fragrant long after he ceased 
to tread it. True, the varieties were haphazard, and his conscien- 
tious objection to grafting and pruning stood in the way of improv- 
ing the stock, A niece of Jonathan's (daughter of his sister, who 
followed him to the west) living in Fort Wayne, Indiana, who 
learned the facts of his life motive from her mother, explains that 
"Uncle Jonathan believed it to be a sin to interfere with the 
divinely ordained processes of nature, and so would never graft his 
stock." Also, the "cast-off tin can or cooking utensil" which he 
wore as a hat was not adopted as a matter of taste, but from what 
he deemed necessity. The stew-pan was indispensable on his 
travels ; so was a cover for his head. Hands and back were already 
overloaded, and the only place available for carrying the pan was 
his head, which could not accommodate both pan and hat. There- 
fore Jonathan sacrificed the hat, just as he sacrificed every other 
thing which stood in the way of his service to his fellowman. His 
coat of cofifee-sacking, which he "found to be a very good garment," 
was only adopted in an emergency, and he would not discard it for 
a handsomer garment lest he should, by having something better 
than he actually needed, deprive some other man more needy than 

Undoubtedly Jonathan loved beauty, and wished to create 
beauty and happiness, else why the apple trees, the gifts of gay 
prints and ribbons to his child friends? It was of his own choice 
that he always slept upon the floor before the cabin fireplace, but 
his motive was a wish not to incommode his host's family. For 
the same reason, he would not sit at the table lest some one of the 
children of the family had to wait, but he was a welcome guest at 


all cabins. His life ended March, 1843, at the end of a prematurely 
warm day, when he reached the home of William Worth, near Fort 
Wayne, after a long tramp. His supper of bread and milk was 
eaten while he sat, of his own choice, on the western doorstep, and 
from the same lowly pulpit he read, aloud, the Beatitudes. Then 
he lay down, as usual, on the floor to sleep — a sleep from which he 
emerged only to enter that which knows no waking. His burial 
in the old David Archer cemetery was attended by old settlers' 
families from miles around and from the city. In after years the 
original oak slab which served for a headstone rotted away, and 
for a time the exact location of the grave was uncertain, but in 
1912 it was rediscovered in digging for another grave (the old 
cemetery is still in use) and the headstone above the now double 
grave bears inscriptions for both occupants. A bronze tablet (set 
in a natural boulder) dedicated to the memory of the deeds of 
Jonathan Chapman, was placed in Swinney park at Fort Wayne in 

Logan County Formed. The new county was separated from 
Champaign December 30, 1817, by an act of legislature, only its 
southern boundary being determinate for some time after. The 
"act" provided for the location of a temporary seat of justice at 
the tavern of Edwin Mathers "or other convenient place" until a 
permanent site should be estabHshed. The separation was directed 
to take effect March 1, 1818, and the act was signed by Duncan Mc- 
Arthur, then speaker of the lower house. The land comprising 
the county was referred to as "Congress and Virginia Military 
Lands," and the final fixing of the northern boundary was not com- 
pleted for some years, being* delayed by disputes with Hardin 
county relative to the relocation of the old surveys. The arbitrary 
division of the county into townships, followed slowly as settlement 

Logan county received its name in the act of legislature creat- 
ing it, and it was bestowed in honor of Gen. Benjamin Logan of 
the American Army, whose forces first opened by means of the 
"expedition," the territory of the Miami headwaters to white settle- 
ment. There is a somewhat popular error, frequently met with, 
that if the county was not named in partial reference to "Logan 
the Mingo," the name Logan at least had an Indian origin. This is 
quite without foundation, the truth being that the only Logans 
who had hereditary right to the name were of direct Irish ancestry, 
if not of direct importation from Ireland. The name belongs to 
the unnumbered Irish names ending in "gan." Logan the Mingo 
(Indian name Tah-gah-jute) was born at Shamokin, Pennsylvania, 
the half-breed son of a white Canadian named Shikellamy, who at 
the time was the chosen chief of the Indians collected in that 
vicinity. Tah-gah-jute succeeded his father in that capacity. James 
Logan, an Irish Quaker and celebrated scholar, came to America 
with William Penn in the first half of the eighteenth century, and 
at the time Tah-gah-jute reached manhood, he was acting governor 
of the Pennsylvania colony. Tah-gah-jute conceived a great admira- 
tion for him, and adopted his name (with or without sanction of the 
owner) a custom quite common among Indians of all tribes. Later, 


as "Logan, Chief of the Mingoes" Tah-gah-jute migrated to Ohio, 
where the troubles began. "Mingo" was merely a term applied by 
Indians to any group of Iroquois living in exile from their own 
territory. "Logan Chief of the Mingoes" was in no way connected 
with the Indians of Logan county, nor concerned in the conflicts 
there. Incidentally, his celebrated "speech," was inaccurately 
reported by the trader, John Gibson, for Logan never had a child, 
and his wife outlived him, although he attempted to kill her, while 
intoxicated, and believing that he had done so, fled. Being pursued 
by relatives, who followed him to carry this tiding, the fugitive, who 
was discovered at last near the shore of Lake Erie, was killed, in 
resisting capture, by Tod-hah-dos, the son of his sister, who alone of 
the Mingo's blood had been a victim of the white raids in Ohio. 
This is a digression, however, and is to be pardoned, because intro- 
duced to make clear a point which is of interest to every Loganite. 

County Seat 

Offers were made by different settlers of sites for the pro- 
posed capital of the new county, the commissioners, Richard Hock- 
er, John Hopkins and Solomon Smith, at first accepting that 
of lands lying about two miles south of Zanesfield, possessed 
by Solomon McColloch, Samuel McCoid and Joseph Hedges. In 
the month of April, 1819, the "said commissioners" were informed 
by the Court of Common Pleas that "a good and sufficient title 
in fee simple" was unobtainable for the proposed site, whereupon 
they accordingly selected another site, offered by John Tullis, 
Leonard Houtz and William Powell, whose proposition included 
the liberal terms quoted below from the court document furnished 
the historian by Mr. W. W. Riddle. The site in question was, of 
course, the land upon which the heart of Bellefontaine was soon 
afterward located. After designating in technical terms the exact 
location of the tract, the offer reads : 

"We, the undersigned, will give, for the use of the county, 
the Public Square, a sufficient lot for public worship, and burying 
ground, and in addition to the above lots, as much ground as will 
make one hundred acres, the whole to be laid out in lots, and to give 
the county an equal half of said lots, as they may be numbered, 
beginning with the lowest number, or the highest number, the 
town directors to take the first choice, we the next, and so on, 
alternately. Also to convey the lots to be given as aforesaid in 
fee simple, with covenants of warranty. Given our hands this 4th 
day of May, 1819." 

No mention is made in the court journal quoted of the name 
of the new county seat, but in the year following the title Bellefon- 
taine appears an accepted thing. It is well understood now that 
the name was selected not in reference or compliment to any other 
town or family of that name, but as descriptive of the crystal springs 
in which the locality abounded, and possibly in special reference 
to Blue Jacket spring, the site being that of Chief Blue Jacket's 
former residence. Further on in the proposition of Messrs. Tullis. 
Houtz and Powell, the southern boundary of the town was fixed 


as "a line running- due east and west," and so located as to include 
"the big spring-." The long misprized gift to the town was at the 
foot of the slope, south of the old Blue Jacket cabin in which (with 
some improvement, doubtless,) John Tullis, sr., then made his habi- 
tation. The word "Bellefontaine," meaning "beautiful fountain," 
was suggested by a daughter of John Gunn, who, it will be remem- 
bered, is said to have been a man of scholarly attainments, and whose 
daughters were also unusually accomplished ladies. 

The town was laid out March 18, 1820, by the proprietors and 
the town director, Solomon McColloch, duly appointed and au- 
thorized by the court. Based upon the southern boundary line, 
the plat was divided into sixteen blocks, standing "four square" 
with the world — or so it was honestly intended by the early survey- 
ors. Cincinnati (now Main) and Columbus avenues intersected at 
the center, the public square lying at the southeast angle of the 
intersection. Chillicothe and Sandusky avenues extended east and 
west to south and north of Columbus, and Mad River and Detroit 
streets ran north and south to the east and west of Cincinnati 
street. The outer edges were simply designated "corporation 
limits" and only thirty feet was allowed each for roadway. The lots 
averaged fifty-five feet in width, by two hundred and twenty feet in 
depth. The cemetery was located in the northwest corner of the plat, 
and many years later, after the removal to the new city of the dead, 
the plot was transformed into a pretty little park (Powell), in which 
a memorial boulder and bronze tablet was placed a few years ago 
by Miss Mary Powell, in honor of her grandfather, William Powell. 
Needless to say, the whole plat lay almost unimproved, and mostly 
lost in a thicket of trees and underbrush, through which the projected 
streets had yet to be hewn. The Blue Jacket cabin, in which lived 
the senior Tullis, was the only structure within the limits of the 
plat. The whole was done as written down. The town director 
was ordered by the court to attend public sales, and authorized to 
make private sales at his own discretion if he believed the county 
should profit thereby, and in particular authorized to sell to William 
Powell, "Lot 114, on which some improvement is made." In the 
mammoth game of "tit-tat-toe" between the county and the proprie- 
tors (scarcely as smile-provoking to the participants as it seems to- 
day), the county had taken all the lots with "even numbers." These 
lots were offered at public sales, the first of which was held the first 
Tuesday in June, 1820. The plat was filed for record August 12, 
1822. Solomon McColloch held his responsible office, for which he 
gave bond in the sum of $10,000, until 1831, at which time a further 
entry in the court journal reads : "Solomon McColloch comes into 
court and tenders this resignation of the office of town director. 
. . . which resignation is accepted by the court ..." who 
thereupon appointed Benjamin S. Brown his successor, with Henry 
H. McPherson, David P. Alder, and Anthony Casad for his sureties. 
Dr. Benjamin S. Brown was still acting in the capacity as late as 
1841, and doubtless continued to act until the county's properties 
were finally disposed of. 

Among the very earliest settlers of the new town were Joseph 
Gordon, Nathaniel Dodge, Anthony Ballard, William Gutridge, 


Thomas Haines and John Rhodes. Joseph Gordon, well known as 
an early post-rider for the army, and mail carrier in the settlements, 
erected the first house, a log cabin, at the west end of the lot at the 
northwest corner of Cincinnati and Chillicothe streets. He lived in 
this house, and, soon after, built a larger one on the corner, with 
a low attic story above, which he sold to Anthony Ballard, who kept 
a tavern there for a year or two. Robert Paterson then occupied 
it for a time as a store and residence, while buying and building else- 
where, and Dr. Lord also lived there, and had a small office building 
adjacent. On the southeast corner of the same streets, where the 
Dowell block stands. Dr. Lord erected, in 1830, a frame building 
which he rented for tavern purposes, different tavern keepers of the 
times running the place, which went by various names. Walter 
Slicer and Patrick Watson are said to have been hosts there. On 
the northeast corner of these streets was erected the first brick 
building within the original town limits. John W. Marquis was the 
the builder, and its first occupant was a man named Mitchenor. It 
subsequently was torn away and rebuilt by Walter Slicer, whose 
family residence was maintained in the new building for many years. 
It was afterward remodeled into a business house, and has for many 
years now been occupied by the Patrick Fogarty grocery. Slicer's 
property included not only the residence, but several lots to the 
north on Main street, and a large section to the east and south on 
Chillicothe. Mrs. Anna B. Blessing, youngest daughter of the 
Slicers, now living on East Chillicothe street, has vivid recollections 
of the life of the old home. 

Public Buildings 

Adjoining the Slicer lots on Cincinnati (or Main) street space 
was reserved for a temporary courthouse which should serve until 
a permanent courthouse could be afforded by the young com- 
monwealth. The temporary building was a stout wooden struc- 
ture, two stories high and twenty-four by thirty-six feet in size, 
set upon an eighteen inch foundation of stone. The sum of 
$1,294, was allowed for building. The contract for it was completed 
by Vachel Blaylock, in 1822, and in the following winter Blaylock 
made the furnishings of the court room, "a. good, substantial bar, 
three sets of jury boxes, one table five feet square and two smaller 
tables," receiving $60 for the work. (Solomon McColloch after- 
ward bought this property, in 1825.) 

The services of all the earliest churches were held in this old 
court house. The home of Robert Patterson, located immediately 
north of it, accommodated the Presbyterian mid-week prayer-meet- 
ings. Patterson's holdings extended north to the corner of Main 
street and Court avenue, and east on Court to Opera street. On the 
corner he built his store, and added, in both directions from it, the 
lines of small buildings which came soon to be known as "Patter- 
son's Row," and which survived until 1879, when they were torn 
away to make room for more modern buildings. 

The first jail was built by Blaylock at the same time, on the 
northeast corner of the public square, and was constructed of logs, 


one wall within another, the interstice of ten or twelve inches filled 
in with loose stones. The floors above and below were of logs, and 
all logs used in the building were hewn, fifteen inches square. Roofs 
and subsequent additions of equal strength made it sufficient for 
the accommodation of the county's prisoners for nearly fifty years, 
until 1870, when the new jail and sheriff's residence at the corner 
of Mad River and Court streets was erected. In 1833 contracts were 
let to William Bull, John Wheeler and George Shuffleton, all of 
whom were citizens, for the erection of a permanent court house, of 
brick and stone, which was to cost, all told, $2,050, and was com- 
pleted in 1833, in which year two additional office buildings, erected 
one on either side of the court house, were built by William Watson, 
at an expense of $650. The new court house did duty for many 
public services which are not in the usual category, yet were emi- 
nently proper in themselves. Churches were organized there ; cele- 
brations of national and municipal events were held in it ; political 
meetings were not barred from it; entertainments, professional and 
amateur, were staged in it, in addition to the tremendous legal battles 
fought before its bar of justice. Concerts and theatricals given by 
the Bellefontaine talent of those decades cannot be recited now, 
but a glance through old scrapbooks and newspapers tells many a 
tale of men who are only remembered as "grave and reverend 
seigneurs." And great artists appeared before the audiences there. 

In the meantime, the temporary court house was having its 
second "day." Purchased by Peter Leister, it was altered and en- 
larged by him, and opened as a tavern in 1834, and in the next ten 
years became a famous hostelry, which lost none of its prestige when 
it passed, in 1844, into the keeping of Walter Slicer, whose fame as 
a host is still a proverb. The first bell ever hung or rung in Belle- 
fontaine was that at Peter Leister's tavern. 

Other taverns were opened, almost too numerous for anything 
but mere mention. William Bull had one of these, at the site of the 
Tremont block, on Main street. Daniel Workman, whose daughter 
married Nathaniel Dodge, a fellow merchant, kept a store and tavern 
in a building erected by him at the corner of Columbus and Main 
streets, which was afterward occupied as a shoe store by John B. 
Miller, and in 1846 purchased by William Rutan, who erected the 
first Rutan building — three stories high — the same year. This was 
kept as a hotel for a few years, then converted to mercantile pur- 
poses. A building of logs, put up for a store (kept by John Rhodes, 
the first Bellefontaine merchant), stood on the northwest corner 
of the same streets, where the Watson block was built in after years, 
which was also operated as a tavern for some years. The Simpson 
House, built at the corner of Mad River and Auburn streets, was a 
pretentious brick structure, which afterward became the home of 
Hiram B. Strother, and has been torn down. The Black Horse 
tavern was a resort which even in that unmistakably rough time 
was regarded with public disfavor and even repulsion, but it stood 
far outside the northern limits of the town. The Fountain House, 
situated on West Chillicothe, close to the railroad, was a later afiFair, 
and a well-kept place of entertainment for the traveling pubHc. It 
burned about 1872. Another, known as the Branham House, erected 


on West Chillicothe avenue (north side), between the tracks, was 
removed to make room for the Cleveland, Cincinnati, Chicago & St. 
Louis Railway depot. 

Hotels. None of these, however, ever held the same place in 
public estimation that was occupied by the old court house tavern, 
under its various landlords. Everybody knows that every tavern 
in those early days had a "bar," and that those bars did inestimable 
damage to the youth of the town, and did not remarkably improve 
the morals of their elders. The evil may for the greater part, in the 
case of the famous old tavern under consideration, be ascribed to 
"the times" and the manners, both of which have changed. What 
horrifies the present day citizen was then taken for granted. And 
certain it is that the best of Bellefontaine society — and that is to say 
something! — centered its social life and innocent gaiety in Walter 
Slicer's old hotel. It was there that the youth of Bellefontaine danced 
many a night away to the music of "the old band." It was there 
that Coates Kinney penned the immortal lines of "The Rain Upon 
the Roof," the poem having shaped itself in his brain while walking 
in from a home on the West Liberty road, where he had spent the 
previous night under the rafters of a farm house, listening while 
"the melancholy darkness gently wept in rainy tears." There, too, 
the poet brought his lovely bride, to be greeted by the elite of the 
town in a gay fete given in her honor. Many a great man rested 
under its roof, and many a newcoming solid citizen sojourned there 
while choosing or building a home. The house was bought in 1855 
by John B. Miller, a native of New York, who came to Bellefontaine 
in 1832, by way of Cincinnati, where he stopped temporarily, and 
where he married Miss Susanna Thurston. When the Mexican war 
broke out Mr. Miller entered the service of the government, was 
recruiting officer, and went into the fight as a lieutenant. After 
establishing himself in the tavern, which he again improved and 
enlarged, he changed the name to the "Union House," under which 
title it remained until torn down in 1880. 

The Union House continued the success of the past, the wide 
acquaintance of its landlord, who was an enthusiastic admirer of the 
best in dramatic and musical art and artists, attracting the best of 
transient custom to his hotel. Like Peter Leister and Walter Slicer, 
he had a family of beautiful daughters, and social life still centered 
for a long time about the hospitable house. Of the Leister daughters, 
the three eldest married, respectively, William Newell, Robert H. 
Canby, and Andrew Gardner, jr. The elder Miss Miller, Sarah J., 
married Thomas Hubbard, sr., then editor of the Gazette, and 
founder of the Examiner, and was the mother of the distinguished 
Hubbard family of today. The younger daughter, Miss Mary Miller, 
lives on East Auburn street, with her brother. Dr. Frank Miller. 
Other members of the Miller family have achieved distinction in 
different lines far away from their native city. 

Upon the outbreak of the Civil war, Lieut. Miller again re- 
sponded to his country's call, and was recruiting officer for the 
county, also a soldier in the field, returning in 1864 as Capt. Miller. 
During his absence in the service, Capt. Miller provided a private 
home for his family, placed his financial affairs in the hands of 


Andrew Gardner, a man who deserved and held the confidence of 
everyone, and left the tavern in the keeping of "Long" Jim Moore, 
who was faithful unto his very sudden death from heart disease, 
just before the proprietor's return. From 1864 to 1877, when he died, 
Capt. Miller was personally the host of the Union House. Under 
his remime the old "bar" was forever abolished. The house was 
maintained by the family until 1879, when it was sold to be torn 
down for the erection of the Opera block. 

In 1853, in the wave of prosperity which followed the coming 
of the railroad, the Hotel Logan was built on East Columbus ave- 
nue, opposite the court house, the builder being David Whitehill, 
who very shortly afterward left Bellefontaine, never to return. The 
hotel was opened and conducted for the first year or two by 
Nehemiah McMichael, veteran clock seller and mender of old Belle- 
fontaine, who had also conducted the Rutan House during its career 
as a hotel. Cooley and Leonard also operated the hotel at some 
period, but most definitely remembered among the scant details that 
survive the mist of time, are the Lamisons, who kept the place with 
all of elegance that pertained to the time and circumstances. The 
two Misses Lamison were popular young ladies, who, with the Miller 
sisters, and the Sheer girls and others, composed a gay group, whose 
grown-up graces their younger sisters envied from a perspective 
of short frocks and pinafores. One of the Lamison sisters became 
Mrs. Underwood of Lima, and another married Dr. Travis. Both 
are deceased. 

The hotel has undergone many changes, additions being built 
at both the east and west ends, and of its many managers, several, 
like the Lamisons, Lanes and Dickinsons, have left grateful mem- 
ories in the Bellefontaine mind, while some others are better soon 
forgotten. It is now in good hands, but its days of public service 
are probably near an end, on account of its advanced age. It is 
the sole surviving relic of ante-bellum hotels in Bellefontaine. 

The Hotel Ingalls was erected in 1873 by Thomas Miltenberger, 
whose name it at first bore. Whether Bellefontaine, which had 
outgrown its tavern days, had not yet arrived at the age of hotels, 
cannot be said, but the big new hotel which was undertaken with 
such high hopes brought financial ruin to its builder, and its custom 
languished for twenty years or more. Some time ago it was pur- 
chased by Howenstine and Huston, who renovated it and intro- 
duced modern improvements, and now, under good management, 
it is enjoying a prosperity its young days never knew. The same 
firm also own the old Hotel Logan, which is managed by Robert 
Berndt ("Bobby Burns"), while the Hotel Ingalls is operated by 
John C. Alexander and Eldin Reed. 

Business and home building kept pace with the development 
of the town, whether that is considered fast or slow. It was, doubt- 
less, average. The great cyclone of 1825 did little damage to the 
new village, the brick house of Leonard Houtz, built outside the 
corporation limits, being the only building injured. It was a two- 
story brick, and the top story was neatly removed by the tornado. 
Mr. Houtz replaced the roof on the story that was left, and so the 
house remained ever after. 


After John Rhodes, who failed as the town's first merchant, 
Thomas Armstrong bought the property of William Powell at the 
site of the First Presbyterian church, and had the first store of the 
times. Afterward Armstrong occupied a site where the Logan 
hotel was built. 

The Lot T. Janney store opened about 1821 in a one-story log 
structure at the site of the Melodeon building. The Robert Pat- 
terson store was started in 1824. Janney kept a tavern next to his 
store, as also did John Wheeler, who built a large two-story wooden 
house north of Columbus avenue, on the west side of Main street, 
and built up a trade and custom of wide extent. In this store Wil- 
liam G. Kennedy, who came from West Liberty in 1835, began his 
career as a captain of local industry. Isaac Gardner arrived in Belle- 
fontaine about 1828 or 1830, a young man just of age, and embarked 
in mercantile business in what had been the McClanahan tavern, at 
the present site of the Wissler dry goods house, opposite the court 
house. Here he laid the foundation for the famous Gardner store, 
which held first place in Bellefontaine for so many years. For a 
long time he had as partner Noah Z. McColloch, whose attractive 
young cousin, Eliza Reed — the daughter of Elizabeth Zane — he 
afterward married. "General" Isaac Gardner became a foremost 
citizen of the town, and is to be counted one of the real builders of 
Bellefontaine, having had a hand in the promotion of every improve- 
ment up to the time of his retirement from active life. He died in 
1894. The Gardner store was removed in after years to the Wat- 
son corner, where it was long the gathering place for congenial 
souls. Let no one imagine for an instant that those gatherings 
indicated ordinary loafing or gossip. They included the best men 
of old Bellefontaine, in a day when clubs and societies and read- 
ing rooms did not exist, and were the board upon which were 
spread feasts of reason with a flow of soul which in this day of 
haste can never be duplicated. There are still a few men living 
who remember hearing the voice (not professional) of Dr. B. S. 
Brown at the door of the "corner store," inquiring in his inimit- 
able tones, "Is there any man within who has leisure for intel- 
ligent conversation?" and the answering chorus of welcome from 
the rear. And those conversaziones ! What a pity it is that there 
was rio Boswell loafing there to jot down the wit and wisdom of 
the village Johnson! In 1846, Howe, the historian, found eleven 
dry goods stores in a village of six hundred and fifty inhabitants. 
Today, with nearly ten thousand population, the dry goods trade 
is taken care of by four great department stores, the Annat, Den- 
man, Morris and Wissler establishments, which display a greater 
variety of textile merchandise than could have been found in the 
most metropolitan store of 1846. Leather goods and saddlery 
were handled by William Rutan and Abner Riddle, who came from 
West Liberty in 1846 and 1848 respectively, and were partners in 
business. Mr. Rutan built the first three-story block in the town, 
and the presence of these men in the affairs of Bellefontaine was 
a great impetus. 

Incorporation had been effected by act of legislature in 1835, 
at which time the promise of the first railroad was already gilding 


the future. Local capital and business and engineering talent being 
engaged in the project, great expectations were indulged in, and 
not without realization, though stage coach traffic was not entirely- 
displaced for many a long year. Not until 1847 did the first train 
creep slowly into Bellefontaine on the steel highway. 

Scarcely had the town realized its new prosperity when its first 
great disaster almost overwhelmed it — the great fire of 1856, which 
started in a stable in the rear of the Rutan building, and with no 
fire protection but a line of buckets from the springs and the town 
pump, the pride of old Bellefontaine went down in ruins, followed 
by the whole of west Columbus avenue, and "Scarf's Row" on the 
west side of North Main street. Seventy-eight buildings in all 
were devoured by the fire-fiend. Rutan and Riddle set an example 
of courage and enterprise to the stricken town and a better Belle- 
fontaine began to rise slowly from the ashes. In the years follow- 
ing the fire, several of the staunchest structures of the town were 
erected, beginning with the new Rutan building, which still houses 
the People's National Bank and many of the most important offices 
in the city ; the Watson block, to which Judge Lawrence added on 
the north; Melodeon Hall, Bellefontaine's first real place of public 
entertainment, and gradually, the Buckeye block, and many others 
too numerous to mention, which accommodated the growing busi- 
ness of the county seat. 

Home building progressed as prosperity was slowly won, or as 
men of capital located in the town permanently. Many of the early 
residences of Bellefontaine's well-known citizens still preserve the 
social character of the times — dignified, spacious, and even stately — 
with an old-time elegance which is not attempted in the smaller, 
cozier homes which are popular today. 

The first "addition" to Bellefontaine was that made by Jared 
B. Dawson, whose wife was "Kitty" or Catherine Armstrong, a 
grand-daughter of Isaac Zane. The addition was situated at the 
southeast quarter of the town plat in 1845. Isaac Gardner made an 
addition in 1849, and Walter Slicer another in the same year, Bed- 
dow's addition following in 1850. All these were on the southern 
border, and the men who laid out the improvements gave an extra 
thirty feet to the corporation road, making Auburn street con- 
form to the sixty-foot average of the first streets. Dawson gave the 
land for the building of St. Patrick's church on Patterson street. 
Slicer and others gave much of the unimproved land for the rail- 
road right-of-way. Additions on the south, west, north, northeast 
and east, four in 1851, one in 1856, 1866, 1869 and 1870, by McCol- 
loch, Gardner, Powell, Aylesworth, Stanton, Julia Powell, D. W. 
Hoge, and William Lawrence. Rambo's, Howenstine's and Powers' 
came later, and in 1871 all lots were renumbered, as the city limits 
had then been extended to cover one square mile, the center of the 
new plat being still maintained at the intersection of Main and 
Columbus streets. Brown, Park and Elm streets, it should be 
remarked, were the north, east and west corporation limits of old 
Bellefontaine, and were allowed to remain at the original width of 
thirty feet, because of the building which had taken place at certain 
points before additions were regularly platted. Leonard Houtz, 


whose property lay on the west, was accounted one of the pro- 
prietors of the town site only because it was necessary, in order to 
complete the plat, to secure the thirty-foot roadway from his land. 
Mr. Houtz preferred to give, rather than to sell, this thirty feet, 
and his name therefore appears as a proprietor. 

After the fire of 1856, hesitating steps were taken toward pro- 
viding fire protection to builders. The early "city fathers" may be 
said to have followed the policy of taking care of the public pennies 
while the public-spirited citizens took care of themselves as before. 
It took several more or less expensive experiments and several 
sharp lessons before a really adequate department was organized. 
Once having fallen into step with the march of progress, however, 
old mistakes have one by one been cast on the scrap heap of the 
past, and the well-organized city fire department of 1919, with its 
up-to-date "triple combination equipment," is able to fling a defi into 
the teeth of the monster which once had Bellefontaine at its mercy. 
The Central Fire Station at the corner of Columbus avenue and 
Mad River street, was built in 1899, one outside station being main- 
tained on Garfield avenue, where a team and hose wagon are kept, 
carrying also ladders and chemicals. The great auto-engine was 
installed in the department in February, 1915. The Gamewell 
alarm system is used in Bellefontaine, and the department includes 
seven full-paid men, and eight call men who respond to alarm sig- 
nals. Fire alarms are frequent enough in the city, but the most 
serious fire in many years was the burning, about four years ago, of 
*he Church of Christ and one adjoining dwelling. The department 
is thoroughly efficient under its chief, H. S. Blair, and is one of the 
best assets the city owns. 

Bellefontaine's City Building stands at the corner of Detroit 
and West Chillicothe streets. It was adapted to its present use, 
with only slight changes, from one of the fine old residences of 
former years, having been built by Jared B. Dawson, and used by 
the Dawsons as a home, after which it passed into the hands of 
N. H. Walker, and still later became the residence of General R. P. 
Kennedy and family. It is a splendid old mansion, lofty ceiled and 
massively built, and was in former days the scene of many gala 
social events, a history which in no way detracts from its usefulness 
as a city headquarters. The present official family of Bellefontaine 
is: Mayor, U. L. Kennedy; city solicitor, John E. West; treasurer, 
John D. Inskeep ; auditor, Paul O. Batch ; chief of police and sani- 
tary officer, John F. Lamborn ; health officer. Dr. W. C. Pay ; board 
of health. Dr. F. R. Makemson, Leister JoHantgen, Arthur Mohr, 
R. E. Brooks, Max Leonard ; city council, president, Altman A. 
Smith ; members, N. A. Hess, C. J. Brooks, A. W. King, J. C. Rein- 
hart, L. G. Startzman, J. O. Smucker, W. F. Wright. Civil service 
committee, Harry E. Pusey, Frank R. Moots, J. J. McGee. Trustees 
of sinking fund, W. W. Riddle, president; C. B. Churchill, vice- 
president; Charles S. Hockett, F. E. Cory, Paul O. Batch. Trus- 
tees of Mary Rutan Hospital, Anson B. Carter, W. T. Haviland, 
D. W. Askren, O. L. JoHantgen, Paul O. Batch, clerk. Directress, 
Hazel Webster. Chief of fire department, H. S. Blair. Superinten- 
dent of public parks, Henry Roberts. Director of public safety. 


Brad. D. Hiatt. Director of public service, Claire A. Inskeep. 
Office department, Miss Susie Huston, chief bookkeeper; Mrs. 
Edna Morgan, assistant bookkeeper ; Miss Margaret Guy, clerk and 

Melodeon Hall, built in the early sixties, divided the honors of 
public entertainment with the old courthouse, usurping them in fact, 
very soon, for the old courthouse before the seventies had become an 
object of ridicule to the public. Old newspaper files of the later six- 
ties are sprinkled with sarcastic comments, and humorous sallies 
directed against the shabby old relic, all of which united to bring 
public feeling to a focus and resulted in the erection of the fine sand- 
stone courthouse which, though criticised by some, has been a 
source of pride to the county and is yet a staunch and honorable 
edifice of justice, but needing remodeling and additional rooms and 
more modern equipment. 

Bellefontaine early became known as "a good show town," and 
many a first class attraction was seen in old Melodeon Hall, the 
greatest actors and actresses of the times not scorning to tread the 
boards of its cramped stage. Edwin Forrest once played Richelieu 
there, in the seventies, and although his manager had booked him 
to be entertained at one of the newer hotels, while the theater was 
across the street from the time-worn old Union House, all "modern 
improvements" were foregone for the sake of a reunion with his old 
friend, Capt. Miller. When the Miller House was torn away, in 
1880, to make room for the Opera Block, much genuine regret was 
mixed with the rejoicing that at last Bellefontaine was to have a 
play house worthy of the best talent. The old Patterson corner had 
already, in 1879, been replaced by the Empire Block. 

The wave of improvement which reached its crest in the building 
Df the Opera Block began in 1875, when a company was formed 
which purchased two lots of the Miltenberger estate, and erected 
there, first, the Buckeye Block, and in 1876 the Tremont Block, on 
the west side of Main street. The company, consisting of W. V. 
Marquis, James Cowman, T. L. Hutchins, and Webb Hoge, was en- 
larged to include, in the Empire and Opera Block enterprises, R. P. 
Kennedy, Dr. J. A. Brown, G. D. Davis, Russell Bissel, A. G. 
Wright, J. F. Mangans and W. H. Chandler. The Opera Block, 
which covers all the ground once occupied by "Patterson's Row," 
and also the site of the Union House, is in "L" shape, and was 
designed by D. W. Gibbs, architect, of Toledo, finished, and the 
Bellefontaine Opera House opened, with an engagement of three 
nights, December 23, 24, 25, 1880, the attraction being the operas 
"Chimes of Normandy" and "H. M. S. Pinafore," brought here by 
Bob Miles, of Cincinnati. From that time for a long term of years, 
the city of Bellefontaine enjoyed a reputation among the stage 
profession which drew the best talent before the local footlights. 
With the flight of time, the play house lapsed into rather shabby 
condition, and has been for some years outside the popular circuit of 
"the road," but it has lately been renovated, redecorated and new 
lighting system installed, by the new manager, Daniel Gutilla, and 
will probably once more attract a high order of entertainment to the 
city. Already, since the reopening in October, 1918, the gifted young 


actor, Lou Tellegen, has appeared before a well-filled house in 
"Blind Youth." 

Building of the better sort again halted for a time after the 
completion of these improvements. It seems difficult to realize that 
as late as 1890-91, Opera street, from Columbus to Court, was bare 
of building, except for one insignificant frame dwelling, now recalled 
as the abode of an African family who had a little Albino daughter. 
This, however, was the era of the Big Four shops and terminals, 
and on the steady tide which then set in, the Powell Block, the Good 
Building, and the Memorial Hall were built, filling the waste space 
with substantial and comely structures. West Columbus avenue is 
filling up with new buildings of a superior character, and the older 
business houses on that thoroughfare are being remodeled according 
to modern standards. Detroit street, lined at an early date with 
many dwellings of the old brick of local manufacture, shows less 
change, except incidentally, than any other in the old part of Belle- 
fontaine, but there is an air of solid old respectability about the 
severely plain old brick homes, set broadside to the street, that 
speaks of a well-being within the faded outer walls, that is quite 
independent of busy time and change. East and West Chillicothe 
are both indicative of remarkable progress toward modernization ; 
East Sandusky and Columbus avenues mingle the past and present 
together in architectural friendliness, and North Main street main- 
tains its mid-century stateliness as far as the old limits, when the 
new mode is distinctively seen as the city climbs the slope north- 
ward. The Bellefontaine National Bank Building was erected in 
1892, and the Examiner and Index-Republican buildings preceded 
that date — the Examiner by some years. The new Lawrence Block, 
rebuilt a number of years ago after partial destruction by fire, is one 
of the finest in the city, being surpassed only by the beautiful Canby 
Building, which occupies the old "Boyd's Corner," where Joseph 
Gordon's pioneer log cabin stood for nearly a century preceding it. 
One who left Bellefontaine a bare ten years ago, returning today, 
would think a fairy's wand had touched many points and transformed 
them. The Carnegie Library, at the corner of Sandusky avenue and 
Main street, was dedicated May, 1905. It is of yellow pressed brick 
and Bedford stone, simple but refined in architectural design, and 
fireproof. It is well planned and lighted, and the reading rooms are 
commodious, and in constant use. The stack room is fairly well 
filled, and the reference library is good, but the fund for replenish- 
ing the shelves is somewhat insufficient for the needs of the com- 
munity. Miss Laura Morgan, the librarian, is a most capable 
director, and the establishment is well patronized by old and young. 
The library board, in 1905, included Robert Colton, John R. Cassidy, 
E. J. Howenstine, Dow Aikin, C. G. Parker, Dr. G. L. Kalb, and Gen. 
R. P. Kennedy. The present board is : President, E. J. Howen- 
stine ; vice-president, C. G. Parker ; secretary, E. C. Cowman ; treas- 
urer, W. G. Stinchcomb ; E. K. Campbell, Dow Aikin and Miss 
Annie Price, who, with Mr. Parker and Miss Morgan, constitute the 
book committee. The library stands on the site of the Rebecca 
S. Brown residence, which in late years was the Methodist par- 
sonage. The nearly nine thousand volumes in the stack room 


include those given by the Women's Club Free Library, opened 
in 1901. 

The new postoffice building at the southwest corner of Chilli- 
cothe avenue and Detroit street, was opened July 1, 1914. It is an 
excellent example of simple and adequate architecture developed in 
gray stone, and the position is one of unquestionable superiority 
from every standpoint. The postmaster is Walker C. Prall ; assistant, 
Luther B. Stough ; the corps of clerks are : Edwin M. Fulton, Frank 
M. Shepherd, Cyrus O. Taylor, Blanche Kauffman, Robert V. Rea 
and Lulu E. Coulter. 

Until 1890 Bellefontaine had been remarkably backward in tne 
matter of street improvement, sidewalks being irregular in their 
width and construction, everyone choosing his own material ; and 
while many were excellent, the general effect was very uncertain — 
especially after dark. Pavement previous to the discovery and 
manufacture of the Buckeye cement languished. The court house 
square was surrounded by streets with no pavement but ordinary 
gravel piking, and the grounds were enclosed within a none too 
sightly picket fence. The old town pump still stood at the corner 
of Columbus and Main. There was no light better than gas, al- 
though gas had been a very early improvement. The town was in 
the clutches of the Bell telephone monopoly. The temperance laws 
for which the newspapers and lawyers of Bellefontaine had fought 
in the legislature were yet unenforced in the city. Beginning in the 
late eighties, the next two decades witnessed a remarkable evolu- 
tionary turmoil (not entirely subsided even now, though pushed 
aside to some extent by the war activities of 1917-1918), in which 
the town, which up to 1895 was content to strain its eyes in the dim 
gaslight of the old gas plant so hardly won in 1873, became the city 
which owns its up-to-date electric plant; in which the town which 
then had not found an adequate water supply to replace the springs 
and seep wells it had outgrown, discovered, while boring for natural 
gas, an inexhaustible subterranean stream of pure water of price- 
less value to Bellefontaine for all the future ; in which the community 
which had suffered the blight of the liquor traffic, which its journal- 
ists and greatest men had fought against for nearly thirty years, at 
last throttled the evil, and made Bellefontaine for a while, at least, 
the largest dry town in the United States ; in which the courthouse 
was at last surrounded with a pavement comporting with its dignity ; 
in which the independent telephone was established, and delivered 
from unjust competition ; in which the great Big Four shops were 
brought to Bellefontaine, and since the beginning of which the pop- 
ulation has nearly trebled itself. 

All this was not brought about without struggle and stress. 
Every step of the way was contested — the improvement of public 
utilities, the principle of municipal ownership of the same, the sup- 
pression of the soul-destroying liquor traffic. It was a battle of 
giants. The press, the pulpits, the professions and the interests 
threshed out each question in the columns of the papers, on the 
public platform, in the back offices, at the curbstone and at the ballot 
box. The rural districts came in for a share of the contentions, for 
not every farmer desired a share in the expense of better roads. It 


was a great formative epoch of personal opinion, as opposed to 
personal prejudice, and in every instance opinion, supported by- 
reason, won the battle when the questions were put to test at the 
polls. The futile "reservoir" built in 1883 was abandoned for the 
new water works in 1889. The electric light plant became a fact in 
1896. The "dry" ordinance, twice proposed before it was passed, 
became operative in 1892. The first petition for it, addressed to the 
council in 1890, by John Carter, failed. The second passed in 1892, 
since when Bellefontaine has been but once betrayed by its council, 
and then only for a brief season. Hammer and trowel, saw and 
chisel, have never been idle a day since the passage of that law 
which the liquor interests would have had us believe (and indeed, 
many did honestly so believe) would "make the grass grow in the 
streets" of a paralyzed city. The superficial observer sometimes 
calls Bellefontaine dull. Surel}^ such an one never witnessed or 
took part in one of its municipal struggles ! 

In the year 1850 the necessity for a more extensive public burial 
ground became acute, and an association was formed, sixty citizens 
uniting to purchase a twenty-acre plat northeast of the city, to be 
devoted to this use. The organization was effected in 1851, at a 
meeting of the proprietors. Gen. Isaac Gardner being the president 
A board of directors was chosen, with Noah Z. McColloch, presi- 
dent; Dr. B. S. Brown, secretary; William G. Kennedy, treasurer; 
Benjamin Stanton, James B. McLaughlin and William Fisher. The 
directors in 1880 were, in due order:. Ezra Bennett, I. S. Gardner, 
G. B. Thrift, Edward Patterson and R. P. Kennedy. At present, 
1918-1919, the board consists of Joseph JoHantgen, president ; Alfred 
Butler, secretary; E. J. Howenstine, treasurer; W. W. Coulter, Allie 
J. Miller, and Ray F. Tremain. The cemetery has been added to 
extensively since its purchase, and the situation is beautiful, lying 
beyond Rutan park, and reached by way of Stanton avenue. 

Brown park, the pretty little retreat in the heart of the city, was 
the memorial gift of Mrs. Rebecca S. Brown, the widow of Dr. B. S.<r 
Brown, whose statue seems to cast a benediction on the spot by its 
benignant mien. 

Rutan park, the picturesque strip of woodland given to Belle- 
fontaine by Mrs. Rebecca Williams, in memory of her father and 
m.other, Mr. and Mrs. William Rutan, is many acres in extent, and 
furnishes an enviable advantage to the city, not possessed by many 
towns of its size. It is a playground for the children and a rest and 
recreation spot for their weary elders in summer afternoons. The 
annual Chautauquas are held on its green slopes. The logs of the 
old Joseph Gordon cabin, from "Boyd's Corner" stand purified and 
rejuvenated, among the trees on a hillside. These logs were pur- 
chased by Thomas Hubbard, jr., at the time the old place was torn 
down, and presented to the city by him. Miss Mary Powell de- 
frayed the expense of having them reconstructed into the rustic rest 
house at the park, and quaint furnishings for the cabin have been 
contributed from different sources. Its fire-place was built of old- 
time bricks from the Rutan sidewalk, the antique mantel-piece was 
donated by the brothers Anson and Andy Carter, and Miss Mame 
Scarff gave the old andirons. The last touch is added by the hang- 


ing of an old iron crane, the handiwork of Bellefontaine's oldest 
blacksmith, Murray Dowell. 

Near Rutan park rises Possum Run, the pretty stream which 
used to purl its winding way untrammeled through the centre of 
Bellefontaine, on its route to Blue Jacket creek. It still sings in 
public as far as Park street, where it enters a tunnel and from thence 
is straight-jacketed underground to its destination — and all because 
of its naughty propensity to wake up when everybody least expected 
it, and inundate sidewalks and cellars, and sometimes to endanger 
life. Other natural fountains of water have been diverted into 
straightened channels in similar fashion, because they stood in the 
way of city building. One famous spring in particular is now cov- 
ered by the north section of the Watson block, added by Judge 
Lawrence many years ago, and the water which slaked the thirst of 
the central business district for at least thirty-five years runs away 
forgotten under some of its largest buildings. 

Bellefontaine has reached its majority, and the future beckons 
with fine promise. The story, nearly told, is one of a long youth 
which makes for a strong manhood. Unconsciously located at the 
highest point of any city in the state, and arbitrarily set as nearly 
as possible in the center of the county, out of the established line 
of traffic, and behind other towns in settlement, the county seat 
owes its steady advancement to the men and women who were its 
makers and builders. Much attention has been paid in these pages 
to Bellefontaine's great men, and with the utmost justice has every 
word been spoken. But from the strong warp and bright woof of 
Bellefontaine's social fabric, the historian draws one more thread-— 
the life thread of Richard Hennesey, "born in County Kerry, Town 
of Listowel, Ireland, April 18, 1827." "Buckshot" Hennesey, as 
he is affectionately known in Bellefontaine, is now its oldest living 
citizen. He was brought to America at the age of seven years, 
entered the employ of the old Mad River railroad at the age of 
fourteen, in 1841, and landed in Bellefontaine with the railroad, 
remaining in its employ for more than sixty-six years, being honor- 
ably retired on a pension twelve years ago — to his deep regret! 
From 1852 for ten years he was stationary engineer for the old Bee 
Line ; fireman on the night express for the ensuing five years ; for 
four summers he ran the engine on the little pleasure steamer on 
Silver lake, and on White river at Indianapolis (the latter being his 
only absence from Bellefontaine) ; subsequently, up to 1876 he had 
care of engines at the old roundhouse of the Big Four, and then was 
variously employed as track-walker, pump inspector, engine wiper 
and boilershop helper, until his retirement. In 1904, Mr. Hennesey 
was the one employee beside the foreman who stood by the com- 
pany in the strike of that year. And so, for sixty-six years, Belle- 
fontaine saw "Buckshot" come and go to his daily work, marching 
straight as any soldier, chin in the air, his dinner-pail swinging like 
a knapsack from h'~. shoulders, a song in his heart and a merry, 
kind word ever ready on his tongue. Baptized in infancy by Rev. 
R. B. Mahoney, he has been a loyal member of St. Patrick's ever 
since its organization, and loyal, beside, to every principle of civic 
righteousness. When Charles Olby, railroad official, wrote "Buck- 

\l\tws i>y Be\Vt^orA^\r\«, OV>\©- 


shot" on Mr. Hennesey's pass, saying "Richard Hennesey was too 
long to write," everybody knew that he meant that Richard Hen- 
nesey went straight to the mark. Mr. Hennesey was the purchaser 
of the first lot in Slicer's Addition, and from his home in the south 
portion of the city has watched the railroad district grow from a wild 
duck lake to a populous and busy industrial locality. He also 
watched the rise and fall of a local brewery on the south side, and 
rejoiced at the triumph of the "Drys." Now, at the age of ninety- 
two, he lives in a cozy bungalow on East Patterson street with his 
daughter. Miss Emma Hennesey, in the enjoyment of still excellent 
health, a clear memory and a wit as ready and kind as ever. Mrs. 
Mary Anderson, a nurse in the state hospital at Lima, and Mrs. 
W. iP. Cantwell, of Bellefontaine, are also daughters. Mrs. Hen- 
nesey went to the farther shore ten years ago. With such fine fibre 
is Bellefontaine bound together. 

The Logan County Bar 

When the first court ever held in Logan county sat in the 
tavern of Edwin Mathers at Belleville, in 1818, just a round century 
ago, there was not one lawyer resident in the whole territory. It 
was necessary for the judge to appoint James Cooley of Urbana 
to act as prosecuting attorney pro tem. Lawyers of repute from 
other parts of the state were frequently present in the newly 
formed counties, their custom being to travel the circuits by vehicle 
— or on horseback, if roads did not permit this — stopping barely 
long enough to attend each court, and pushing on to the next. In 
other days, it was not uncommon for an important murder trial to 
be completed in one day, such was the necessity for despatch. 

The heavy load of responsibility which had been laid upon the 
newly created county prepared a great field for resident practi- 
tioners. There was, to begin with, the natural ignorance and license 
in construction of law of the early days of American liberty. There 
was also the fact that the courts of Logan county were to be held 
responsible for the punishment of all crimes committed within the 
vast indefinite territory included in the phrase : "All that territory 
lying to the north of said [Champaign county] line." There was, 
in addition to these, the confusion of land titles brought about by 
the Virginia Military Surveys, in the relocation of the Ludlow Line 
north of the Greenville Treaty Line ; and the half century dispute 
over the Hardin county boundary line, both of which were veritable 
mines of litigation. But, while to be the scapegoat of border out- 
lawry might have carried opprobrium with it, there was a distinct 
advantage in the situation. For the crimes incident to the edge of 
civilization and the inevitable quarrels which even the best of 
people had (since they were merely human) and the endless land 
tangles drew the best of legal talent Loganward as gladiators to 
the arena. 

Prominent Ohio lawyers of that day who were often present 
in the primitive court room of 1820 and the few years following, 
were Orvis Parrish, Sampson Mason, Charles Anthony, Gustavus 
Swan, Moses B. Corwin, William A. Rogers, Peter P. Lowe, and 


Others whose names are written high on Ohio's scroll of fame. 
Battles royal were fought and won by the legal giants of a hundred 
years ago. Moses Corwin was an able advocate, witty and per- 
suasive; William A. Rogers a quiet but formidable opponent; 
Sampson Mason a lawyer of great polish, courtly and eloquent in 
appeal ; and all were men of marked ability, resourceful and astute. 

William Bayles was the first of his profession to locate in the 
county, coming from Urbana in 1818. He had married a sister 
of Moses Corwin, with whom he studied law, and, while he had 
only limited educational equipment, was a man of considerable 
native ability. He served four years as prosecuting attorney, from 
1821 to 1825, but soon neglected his practice, and as years went by 
drifted into hopeless inebriety, from which habit he met his death 
one night in the waters of Possum Run, which flows through the 
heart of Bellefontaine. 

Following Bayles, Anthony Casad, a young lawyer of high 
integrity, came to the Logan county bar in 1826. Casad is not 
recorded as a brilliant lawyer, but successful through diligence. He 
succeeded Bayles as prosecuting attorney until 1831. In 1840 he 
was elected to the state legislature, and again in 1852. In 1858 he 
was elected judge of the probate court, which court was established 
in 1852, and he held this office until his death in 1861. He was a 
fervent patriot and was driving from Camp Chase (near Columbus) 
after visiting the federal troops there, when he contracted a cold 
from the effects of which he died soon after reaching home. 

Hiram McCartney located in Bellefontaine in 1830, having 
studied law with Judge Benjamin Piatt at West Liberty, who was 
then a resident of the county. McCartney had decided ability, 
added to industry and energy. He was a fearless and outspoken 
abolitionist at a time when that meant political ostracism. "He 
lived," said Judge Lawrence of him, "in advance of his time." 
Before his death, which occurred in 1842, "all too short a lease," 
he had advanced to the head of the Logan county bar. 

Samuel Walker, who came to Bellefontaine in 1831, was also, 
like McCartney, an ardent abolitionist, and especially active in the 
"underground railway." He was a man of ordinary ability, though 
honest and thorough, and held in high esteem. McCartney and 
Walker were friends linked in sympathy on the question of slavery, 
but maintained a lifelong argument over their opposing religious 
beliefs. Walker retired from practice to a farm near Huntsville 
and died in 1852. 

Henry M. Shelby, a native of Lewistown, became a resident 
of Bellefontaine in 1851. As Judge Lawrence wrote, "he had a 
respectable degree of ability, and enjoyed the distinction of being 
a leading Democrat in a strongly Republican county." He died in 
Bellefontaine after a practice of twenty years. 

Isaac Smith and George H. Neiman were lawyers from De GraflF 
who practiced at Bellefontaine for a number of years. Smith was 
previously a justice of the peace. Neiman, a Virginian by birth, 
lived but a few years after coming to this county. 

Richard S. Canby came to Quincy, Logan county, with his 
father. Dr. Joseph Canby. He was but a very small boy at the 


time. Richard received the finest of educational advantages and 
became a most finished scholar. He was admitted to the bar in 
1839, and thereafter divided his time between law and business. 
He was sent to the state legislature in 1845, but had previously- 
served as prosecuting attorney. In 1846 he was elected to congress, 
but after serving one term he retired from law and engaged in 
business pursuits until 1860, when he removed to Olney, Illinois. 
There he was elected circuit judge and became distinguished as a 
jurist during a long incumbency. Judge Canby was politically 
unambitious, and personally very modest. Of himself, he said in 
a letter to Judge Lawrence, "If I had stuck to the practice of law, 
I might have become a respectable lawyer." 

Benjamin Stanton, born of Quaker parents, June 4, 1809, at 
Mt. Pleasant, Ohio, and left an orphan at the age of two years, 
had a life story which reads like a romance. He lived with his 
grandmother until he was fifteen, attending school and working 
on a farm, but by some accident acquired a stiff ankle which was 
believed to unfit him for continuing the life of a farmer. In con- 
sequence of this circumstance Benjamin was apprenticed to a tailor, 
a trade which did not appeal to his taste, but which as a dutiful 
lad he tried to do well, though he freed himself from his master 
before his majority, and became an independent workman. Very 
early in life, Mr. Stanton married a Methodist lassie, whereby he 
lost his birthright membership in the Society of Friends ; but it is 
recorded that he never considered it a cause for regret. He suc- 
ceeded in supporting his family by means of his distasteful trade 
(in which he did not shine) while studying law with Samuel Stokely 
and Rowell Marsh of Steubenville, and was admitted to the bar in 
1833, coming with his wife to Bellefontaine in 1834. For thirty- 
two years thereafter he was engaged in all the most important 
litigation in the county, except that which occurred during his 
eight years of service in congress. He was also a supreme court 
practitioner. When in congress he held a position on the board of 
regents of the Smithsonian institute, and was at one time chairman 
of the committee on military affairs. 

Beside the activities mentioned, Benjamin Stanton served two 
terms as prosecuting attorney early in his career and two as state 
senator; was a prominent member of the constitutional convention 
in 1850, and in 1862 was elected lieutenant governor of Ohio. His 
forensic ability was superb, and the occasion of his famous reply 
to Vallandingham, candidate for governor of Ohio, caused a genuine 

Mr. Stanton was a cousin of Edwin M. Stanton, Lincoln's great 
secretary of war. After the war was closed he decided to leave 
Logan county for West Virginia, where, he said, there was a dearth 
of loyal lawyers, and spent the remainder of his life in that state, 
dying in 1873 at Wheeling. 

C. W. B. Allison came to Bellefontaine from Union county. He 
married a daughter of Benjamin Stanton and became his partner in 
legal practice. Allison is said to have been a highly valuable 
counselor, though not a great jury lawyer, as he was not a public 
speaker. He removed with Stanton to West Virginia in 1866. 


Joseph H. Lawrence, a son of Judge Lawrence (see Judges of 
Logan County), was a native of Bellefontaine, born August 4, 1847. 
He was graduated from Washington and Jefferson college, in Penn- 
sylvania, in 1870, and from the Columbian law college at Wash- 
ington, D. C, in 1871, and was admitted to the bar the same year. 
He was associated in practice with his distinguished father during 
the latter's lifetime. 

John M. Lawrence, a brother, born April 10, 1854, was educated 
at Wittenberg college, Springfield, Ohio, graduating in 1878, and in 
the Cincinnati law school, which he completed in 1880, and was 
admitted to the bar at Columbus, While at the law school he was 
a classmate of President William H. Taft. He returned to Belle- 
fontaine, and, the practice of law not being to his liking, he remained 
in his father's office while the latter was comptroller of the United 
States treasury, afterward entering the Bellefontaine National bank, 
and devoting himself to financial and business interests in active 
association with his father, following this line of work until his 
death, which occurred September 12, 1913. 

James Kernan, sr., was born in Ireland in 1814, was brought to 
America when a child, and received his education in this country. 
He graduated from Cincinnati law school in 1849 and located in 
Bellefontaine, where he practiced for nearly thirty years. He was 
the embodiment of what is known as "an Irish gentleman," as well 
as a successful lawyer. He died suddenly, in 1878, from a stroke 
of paralysis. 

His son, James Kernan, jr., born 1840, was educated in the 
Bellefontaine schools, studied law with his father and became his 
partner in 1865. James, jr., inherited the gentlemanly and scholarly 
qualities of his father and is now one of the most exact and pains- 
taking members of the bar. He is in active practice and highly 

James Walker, a lawyer of splendid ability and fine training, 
came to Bellefontaine about 1850. From 1854 to 1856 he was prose- 
cuting attorney ; from 1862 to 1865 he was United States assessor ; 
in 1867 he was elected mayor of the city, and subsequently was 
member of the legislature for four terms. In 1854 he co-operated 
with Judge William West in the establishment of the Bellefontaine 
Republican, a Republican newspaper which later became famous 
for its fearless advocacy of political principles, morality and right- 
eousness under the management, ownership and editorship of John 
Quincy Adams Campbell. 

James B. McLaughlin, born in Perth, Scotland, in 1817, was 
brought to America at the age of three years, and settled in Belle- 
fontaine in 1833, when he was sixteen years of age. During the 
fifties he was twice elected county surveyor. He studied law with 
Judge Lawrence and was admitted to the bar in 1860. In 1862 he 
was elected prosecuting attorney and served one term, after which 
he received an appointment as United States commissioner. In 
1872 he was admitted to federal court practice. He died in 1878. 

J. Duncan McLaughlin, son of James B., was born in Belle- 
fontaine in 1845, educated in the local schools, and graduated from 
the Cincinnati law school in 1869, being admitted to practice imme- 


diately thereafter. He was county surveyor in 1866 and prosecuting 
attorney in 1874, and in 1880 was elected mayor of Bellefontaine. 
He was associated in practice with his father and Judge Duncan 
Dow. He ably served for two terms as judge of the probate court, 
from February 9, 1897, to February 9, 1903. He is still in active 
practice in Bellefontaine, highly esteemed and respected. 

N. G. Johnston, born in Logan county, 1830, graduated from 
the Ohio Wesleyan university in 1859. He read law in the office 
of West & Walker and attended the Cincinnati law school, and 
was admitted to the bar at Cincinnati in June, 1869. He formed a 
partnership with H. R. Gwynn, who subsequently died, and later 
became a partner of E. J. Howenstine. In 1876 or 1877 he removed 
to Defiance, where he resided until his death, about 1902. 

Thomas H. Wright is a native son of Bellefontaine, born in 
1849. He was graduated from the local high school with honors, 
studied law with the Kernans and was admitted to practice in 1871. 
He spent a short period in Denver, Colorado, then returned to Belle- 
fontaine, but was never an active member of the Logan county bar. 
He was, however, a successful pension attorney, rendering faithful 
service to the soldiers of the civil war. 

Sidney B. Foster of Huntsville was a native of New York and 
came to Logan county in 1850. He studied law under James 
Kernan, sr., and began practice in 1856. For many years he was 
a thriving merchant and a justice of the peace in his home town. 
Sidney B. Foster was widely known for his high ideals and espe- 
cially for his opposition to saloons and the use of intoxicating 
liquors. His influence on the community still lives. 

Henry C. Dickinson, born in Logan county, June 30, 1839, was 
educated at Marysville, Ohio, and read law with the McLaughlins 
and Dow at Bellefontaine, entering the practice of law in the fall 
of 1873. During his active practice he was regarded as one of the 
best trial lawyers of the Logan county bar. He died after a suc- 
cessful career of nearly thirty years. 

William W. Beatty came to Logan county in 1850 and studied 
law with Judge Lawrence, being admitted to practice in 1853. 
He lived at Huntsville but his large practice carried him into 
all the courts of this and surrounding counties. In 1870 he was 
licensed to practice in the LTnited States courts. He was sent 
to the state legislature in 1873, and to the state senate in 1875. 
While there he originatea or was the author of the Township Local 
Option Law. His death occurred some years since. 

R. N. Jordan, who v.ris never an active practitioner, came to 
West Liberty in 1850 and was local justice of the peace there for 
many years, and also mayor of that village for three years previous 
to being admitted to the bar in 1874. He was a brother of the 
Jordans of Cincinnati and Dayton. His death occurred about 1910. 

George W. Emerson of Bellefontaine was born in Logan county 
and educated at Hinsdale college. He studied law with West, 
Walker and Kennedy, and was admitted to the bar in 1875, after 
which he taught school for one year, and began practicing in 1876. 
"George Emerson," as he was familiarly known, was one of the 
most kindly and amiable characters, enjoying the confidence and 


affection of the entire community. He was in the very prime of 
his professional, useful, happy and exemplary life, forty-eight years 
of age, when he died. He was prosecuting attorney for several 
terms, and at the time of his death, 1897, was a candidate for the 

Capt. Harold B. Emerson, son of "George," having graduated 
from the local schools and from Columbia university, is well edu- 
cated, admitted to the bar and is a practicing lawyer, being a mem- 
ber of the law firm of Miller & Emerson, enjoying a large practice. 
He served two terms as city solicitor. When the United States 
entered the world war he volunteered his services and remained 
in the army until honorably discharged after the signing of the 
armistice, and is now practicing. 

James W. Steen, a native son of Logan county, and once a 
member of the law firm of Price & Steen, is still living, in Oklahoma, 
where he is a judge. 

Milton Steen, an uncle, was both banker and lawyer. He died 
at Bellefontaine and is buried in the Huntsville cemetery. 

John Reese, who practiced law in Bellefontaine courts for a 
long period of time, served as mayor of the city and later removed 
to Broken Bow, Nebraska, where he resides at this writing. 

James A. Oder, a native of Logan county, was educated at 
Geneva college, Northwood, afterward studying law with J. B. 
McLaughlin. He commenced practice in 1867, was prosecuting 
attorney for two terms, and died about fifteen years ago. 

John O. Sweet of Urbana, who was educated in the local 
schools and studied law with Emanuel J. Howenstine, afterward 
becoming his partner and enjoying a large practice, left Belle- 
fontaine about the year 1895 and is now in the pension department 
in Washington, D. C. 

William A. West, son of Judge William H. West, was born 
in Bellefontaine. His education was finished at Wooster university, 
and he studied law in his father's office, being admitted to the bar 
in December, 1876. He entered the firm, which then became West, 
Walker & West. His death occurred in 1916. 

Samuel H. West, a nephew of Judge William H. West, who 
also studied with him, served two terms as prosecuting attorney 
and was afterwards attorney for the National Cash Register com- 
pany at Dayton. He was state senator for this, the Thirteenth 
district, for two terms, and is now in Cleveland, serving as general 
attorney for the L. S. & M. S. railway. 

John E. West, born in Bellefontaine, February 8, 1858, was 
educated in the local high school, Wooster university, and the 
Cincinnati law school. He also read law from early boyhood in 
his father's offices. He has been in continuous practice of his 
profession since 1885. Mr. West is now United States commis- 
sioner for Logan county and is a member of the board of trustees 
of Wooster university, and is now one of the leading members of 
the bar, enjoying a fine practice. The law firm of West & West is 
widely known, having existed for nearly sixty years. 

His son, Johnson E. West, educated at Bellefontaine, Wooster, 
Ohio, and Columbia university, New York, was admitted to the 


bar and is now in diplomatic service for the United States in 
Siberia, but previous to this service was city solicitor for Belle- 
fontaine, his native city, and in active legal practice in the firm 
of West & West. 

Robert P. Kennedy was born in Bellefontaine in 1840. He was 
educated in the local high school and in New Haven, Connecticut, 
after which he read law in the offices of West and Walker, and was 
admitted to the bar in 1866. Previous to this, he had served more 
than four years in the Federal army during the Civil war, attaining 
by successive promotions the rank of brevet brigadier general of 
volunteers. He became a partner of Judge West and James Walker 
in 1876. In 1878 he was appointed collector of internal revenue, 
and in 1885 he was elected lieutenant-governor of Ohio. While 
serving in that capacity, he acquired, by reason of his sturdy rulings, 
the appellation of "King Bob." In 1887 he was sent to Congress, 
and once re-elected. In 1899, following the Spanish-American war, 
he was appointed by President William McKinley, a member of 
the Insular Commission, to visit Cuba and Porto Rico, preparatory 
to planning their new form of government. In 1903 he published a 
"Historical Review of Logan County," a handbook of genuine value 
to posterity. The city of Bellefontaine owes its beautiful shade trees 
along the streets to General Kennedy's activity while serving on 
the Tree Commission for the city. He died in the spring of 1918, 
leaving behind him a splendid record of public service, which will 
perhaps never be fully written save in the hearts of those who knew 
him personally. 

Emanuel J. Howenstine, born in Bucyrus, Crawford county, 
Ohio, receiving his education there and at Jefferson college in Penn- 
sylvania, graduating in 1864, and graduating from Cincinnati law 
college in 1866; came to Bellefontaine in the same year, March, 
1866, and has occupied the same rooms for his office during the 
fifty-two years of practice. From time to time partnerships in prac- 
tice with Mr. Howenstine were formed, in which Judge Lawrence, 
N. G. Johnson, John O. Sweet, A. Jay Miller and others have been 
interested. For the past twenty-eight years the partnership of 
Howenstine and Huston has continued. Mr. Howenstine's activity 
and devotion to the business of his profession has been of great 
service to the community. Of all the members of the Logan county 
bar who were in practice in the spring of 1866, when Mr. Howenstine 
commenced practice. Judge John A. Price and James Kernan, jr., 

John R. Cassidy was born in Ireland and came to America 
when a boy. He studied law with great ardor and was admitted 
to the bar in 1893. He continued in the active practice of law until 
1913, when he was made clerk of the House of Representatives. On 
January 1, 1915, when Judge John C. Hover resigned as judge of 
the probate court to become judge of the court of common pleas, 
Governor James M. Cox appointed Mr. Cassidy to serve during the 
unexpired term as judge of the probate court, which he accepted and 
was again made clerk of the house when the political wheel turned 
to his favor, where he is now serving. Mr. Cassidy was twice elected 


mayor of Bellefontaine and represented Logan county in the consti- 
tutional convention of 1912. 

William B. Ramsey has considerable local practice at Belle 
Center, the town of his nativity. He was educated at the local 
schools, Wooster, Princeton, and graduated from the Cincinnati 
law school, June 10, 1898. He practiced in Toledo, Ohio, for a few 
years, but after the death of his father, he gave his attention to the 
"Ramsey" bank, founded by his father, who, with his brother. Earl, 
conducted it in Belle Center. 

Joseph C. Briggs of Belle Center, studied law under the direc- 
tion of Judge William H. West. He was admitted to the bar in 
1890 and enjoys a large practice, his services being in demand in his 
immediate community, before justices of the peace, and he practices 
extensively in the Logan and Hardin county courts, as well as the 
court of appeals and supreme court. 

P. M. Stewart, admitted to the bar in 1903, is in partnership in 
the practice at Belle Center with Joseph C. Briggs, his half brother. 

Major Edward K. Campbell, born in Bellefontaine, was edu- 
cated in the local schools, graduating from the high school, and 
extended his education in Washington, D. C. He served in the 
Spanish-American war, after which he studied law and was admitted 
to the bar in 1901. He has been in the general practice, serving 
two terms as city solicitor. He volunteered when the war against 
Germany was declared and at this time, January 1, 1919, is still 
serving in Camp Sherman, Chillicothe, Ohio, having been made 
provost marshal at that camp. Mr. Campbell is one of the four sons 
of Charles D. Campbell now in the U. S. army service, and is a 
grandson of Edward Knight, former U. S. commissioner of patents 
and celebrated widely for his genius and attainments. 

Alexander Jay Miller, born in Bellefontaine, educated in the 
local schools, Wooster college, and is a graduate of Princeton uni- 
versity and of the Cincinnati law school. Was admitted to the bar 
in 1895. At the beginning of his practice he served two terms as 
city solicitor. His ability as a lawyer is recognized and his services 
required in many jurisdictions. He has a partnership with a law 
firm of which his brother, Albert Miller, is a member, at Toledo, 
Ohio, and gives a portion of his time to practice there. Mr. Miller 
has a fine education, is well traveled, having made two or more visits 
to Europe, and is familiar with all parts of his own country. 

William Wallace Riddle, a son of Bellefontaine, and scion of 
one of the older and substantial families of this community,_ was 
educated at Wooster college and is a graduate of the Cincinnati law 
school. Besides his law practice, he is president of the People's 
National bank, the oldest financial institution of the city. Mr. 
Riddle is an expert in conveyancing and on questions of taxation. 
He has served as city solicitor, two terms in the legislature, and is 
now one of the trustees of the sinking fund. His services to the 
United States government were valuable as chairman of the Liberty 
Loan committee. 

Thomas M. Shea, a native of Bellefontaine, son-in-law of Judge 
John A. Price, was admitted to the bar in 1892. He has served as 
city solicitor and is now in active practice. ^ 


Jacob J. McGee, formerly of West Mansfield, removed to the 
county seat about the year 1910, and is a valuable acquisition to the 
legal force now practicing in Bellefontaine. 

The law firm of Hamilton Brothers, consisting of John M. and 
Ernest M. Hamilton, was established about 1880. These brothers 
first opened their eyes to the beauties of the village of Zanesfield and 
the Mad river valley, coming from a staunch pioneer family. They 
have been actively engaged in the law practice, but have not been 
content to confine their efforts to the practice of law alone, their 
buoyancy of spirit and activity of life has carried them into a wide 
range of business enterprises. 

Hugh H. Newell was born and raised in Union township, Logan 
county, studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1896. Mr. 
Newell has extensive farming and other business interests besides 
his active law practice. 

E. P. Chamberlin, a native of Logan county, studied law in the 
office of Judge William H. West, graduated from the Cincinnati law 
college in 1893, served two terms as prosecuting attorney and was 
enjoying a large practice when he was appointed special assistant 
district attorney by the United States government, with headquar- 
ters at Cleveland, Ohio. For a time he was in partnership with Mr. 
Hugh H. Newell. When Judge Dow retired from the bench, a part- 
nership was formed with him, and later, after the death of Judge 
Dow, a partnership was formed under the name of West & West 
& Chamberlin. Mr. Chamberlin has continued to reside in Cleve- 
land since being appointed by the government. 

Dow Aikin, born in the country near Bellefontaine, was educated 
at the local schools and is an active lawyer, served two terms in the 
legislature, and while so serving became the author of the "Aikin 
law," an outcome of the "Dow law," and touching the taxation of 
intoxicating liquors. He is now one of the leading lawyers of the 
county and highly respected. 

John P. Bower, of Rushsylvania, well serves that community 
as counsellor and practitioner, and is a member of the county school 
board. In 1897 he was elected to the House of Representatives of 
the Ohio general assembly, and brought credit upon himself while 
serving in that capacity. 

M. R. Brown, of Quaker parentage and having native ability, is 
in regular practice in Bellefontaine. 

Elmer L. Godwin was a school teacher and postmaster at West 
Mansfield, before he became one of Bellefontaine's younger lawyers. 
In 1918 he was in government service as buyer of lumber for air- 
planes in the state of Washington, but returned early in 1919 to the 
practice of law in Bellefontaine, after the armistice was signed. 

Lewis F. Hale is the present prosecuting attorney, serving his 
second term, and has a promising future. He was born in Logan 
county, was educated in the local schools and at the Northwest 
university, and taught school before studying law. 

John S. Huston, a brother of W. Clay Huston, of the firm of 
Howenstine & Huston, is a resident of DeGraff, but practices law in 
Bellefontaine and other jurisdictions. 

Forrest G. Long, born in Pleasant township, educated in the 


common schools and at Ada university, admitted to the bar and is 
in active practice, has been city solicitor and also, for two terms, 
prosecuting attorney. 

S. J. Southard came to Bellefontaine from West Mansfield; 
served twice as a member of the state legislature, and is now in 
active practice. 

Frank DeFrees, a native of Bellefontaine, was admitted to the 
bar in 1885 and continued in the practice until a few years ago, when 
he retired from the practice to engage in other v^^ork. 

Marion G. Bell was born near West Mansfield in 1864, was edu- 
cated at the Ohio Northern university, Ada, Ohio, studied law in the 
office of West & West, was admitted to the bar in 1890. He con- 
tinued in active practice until 1911, when he was appointed post- 
master of this city. He died in April, 1915, while ser\dng as 

Thomas L. Moore came to the local bar from the western part 
of the county. His practice was principally abstracting and he did 
not often appear in the trial of cases. His death occurred on the 
19th day of May, 1917. 

Ben. S. Johnson enjoyed a large practice and was regarded as 
one of the strong members of the bar. He died suddenly while in 
the prime of his career. 

W. Clay Huston was born in Butler county, Ohio, in June, 1858, 
and removed with his parents to DeGraff at an earl}^ age. He 
received his education in the DeGraff schools, graduating from the 
high school in that town in 1881, and being retained as a teacher for 
three years following his graduation. He completed the course in 
the Cincinnati law school in 1886, and was at once admitted to the 
bar, practicing in the county courts from his DeGrafif office until 
1890, when he came to Bellefontaine to enter partnership with E. J. 
Howenstine, a business relationship which has lasted continuously 
ever since. Mr. Huston has devoted himself closely to law practice 
and is one of the most forceful members of present Bellefontaine 
society, a citizen in whom general confidence is well placed. 

Walter S. Plum is a native of Logan county, born near Lewis- 
town, November, 1852, the son of Jonathan and Sallie (McKinnon) 
Plum. He was educated in the county schools, attended Wittenberg 
college for one year, and graduated from Adrian (Michigan) college 
in 1878, receiving the B. S. degree, after which he entered the study 
of law in the office of Judge William Lawrence, and was admitted 
to the bar in 1880 after examination before the supreme court of the 
state. From 1882 until 1884 he was city attorney of Bellefontaine, 
and from 1885 to 1891 he served as prosecuting attorney for Logan 
county. In 1893 he was elected by the Republicans to the state 
senate, where he took an active and prominent part in the proceed- 
ings and on the committees. He was elected in 1902 to succeed 
Judge J. Duncan McLaughlin on the probate bench of Logan county, 
which position he held from February 9, 1903, to February 9, 1909. 
In 1912 Judge Plum removed to Atlantic City, New Jersey, where 
he still resides. 

P. M. Keller of West Mansfield was a member of the Logan 


county bar, and occasionally appeared in the trial of cases at Belle- 
fontaine while in practice. 

Edward Kellison came to Bellefontaine from Quincy, Ohio, 
his education having been acquired in the schools of that village 
and the State university at Columbus. He was admitted to the bar 
in 1905 and has had his office in Bellefontaine practically ever since. 
He has devoted his time more to money lending and commercial 
matters than law practice. 

N. G. Hahn came to Bellefontaine from Quincy, Ohio, and 
graduated from the Cincinnati law school, having practiced at Wau- 
seon for several years before coming to Bellefontaine. He is deeply 
interested in the law and is enjoying a large clientele. 

Ernest Thompson came to Logan county in 1889 at the age of 
thirteen years. His education was received in the common schools 
and in the Huntsville high school and at Ohio Northern university 
at Ada, where he graduated with the degree of bachelor of science. 
He then attended the law department of Ohio State university, was 
admitted to the bar, and commenced the practice of law at West 
Liberty. He was from there elected prosecuting attorney, and re- 
moved to Bellefontaine, where he continued the practice after his 
term expired, and in 1916 was elected judge of the probate court, 
where he is now efficiently serving. 

So far as the writer is informed, there is not at this time a law 
student in Logan county. The foregoing completes the roster of 
the county bar, only attempting a brief sketch for each one, exclusive 
of those who have been elevated to the common pleas bench. 

This history of the Logan county bar would hardly be complete 
without mentioning the court reporter, R. Eva Byers, who has 
faithfully and efficiently served in that capacity for nearly fifteen 
years. Her skill in reportorial work, taking the testimony of wit- 
nesses in shorthand and reproducing it in accurate typewritten form, 
her faithfulness and obliging disposition are appreciated by both 
bench and bar. Miss Byers was honored by her election, in 1917, to 
membership on the Bellefontaine Board of Education. 

Judge John A. Price, now the dean of the legal profession in 
this county, is the president of the Logan County Bar Association. 

County officials and assistants now (January, 1919) attached 
to the courthouse are: Judge of the court of common pleas, John 
C. Hover; judges of the court of appeals for Logan county, Phil M. 
Crow, Walter H. Kinder, Kent W. Hughes; judge of probate court, 
Ernest Thompson; court reporter, R. Eva Byers; clerk of courts, 
Irvin P. Steinberger; deputy, Mrs. Ruth Steinberger ; deputy clerk 
of probate, Sergis Wheeler; court bailiff, Joseph Miner; sheriff, 
Homer Kennedy ; deputy-sheriff and criminal court bailiff, George 
W. Smith; Miss Helen Brehm, stenographer to sheriff; 2nd deputy 
sheriff, George Henry. County treasurer, L N. Plum ; deputy treas- 
urer, Berlin Davisson ; Mrs. Helen Kinnan, clerk. County auditor, 
Dr. O. W. Loffer; deputy auditor, Stephen L. Smith; clerks, Henry 
Kemper, Miss Amy Rairdon, Miss Mildred Renick. County re- 
corder, Resin M. Painter; deputy recorder. Miss Emma D. Camp- 
bell; clerk, Mrs. R. M. Painter. County commissioners, John R. 
March, Arthur Renick, W. Allen Bell. County surveyor, Walter B. 


Scott; assistant surveyors, Oliver Richey, Harry Daily, and James 
Crane. Prosecuting attorney, Lewis F, Hale; stenographer. Miss 
Delpha Peele. Trustees of Children's Home, Harry G. Aikin and 
W. S. Jones, Bellefontaine; Henry Mack, Belle Centre; Charles 
McGee, West Mansfield. Courthouse janitor, Jont I. Ansley. Su- 
perintendent of county infirmary, George W. Kennedy. 

The newly elected commissioners are Pearl J, Humphreys, East 
Liberty; A. B. Hover, Stokes township; Hal E. Knight, Bellefon- 

A characteristic incident of the old temporary courthouse days 
was printed by the late Thomas Hubbard many years ago. It was 
during the incumbency of Judge Joseph H. Grain, who sat, on the 
occasion, with three "associate" judges, all of whom were bald- 
headed, while the judge himself possessed a fine head of hair. Into 
the open door of the old courthouse, one day, Lewis Davis dashed, 
seated on his mare "Brown Ear." The assembled court was, of 
course, speechless for a moment, during which the bold horseman 
removed his hat with a flourish, bowed low to the court, and roared, 
"Three bald eagles and a crane !" and rapidly clattered out and away. 
Judge Grain and the associates joined in the inevitable laugh, but 
the offender was subsequently apprehended and jailed for contempt 
of court. 

Courts of Logan County 

Before the majestic figures which have illumined the bench 
of Logan county in its earlier years, the annalist of today bares his 
head. It is rarely vouchsafed to a community to have as inspiration 
for its youth so many and so fine examples as we may write upon 
our county's roll of honor, of the dignity of law and its nobility as 
a profession when followed in high-minded fidelity to its tradi- 

Orvis Parrish was the first presiding judge to hold court in 
Logan county, the time being 1818, immediately following its organi- 
zation, and the place the house or tavern of Edwin Mathers at Belle- 
ville. During Judge Parrish's incumbency the county seat of justice 
was established at Bellefontaine, and all the details provided for 
the court and administration of the law. Beginning with Judge 
Parrish, all the judges who sat upon the county bench until 1851, 
when the new constitution went into effect, were non-resident in 
Logan. The law, however, provided for "associate judges" for the 
dispatch of land cases (rarely for criminal cases), and these digni- 
taries, appointed by the presiding judge, were chosen from the re- 
sponsible member of local society, and during thirty years included 
many of the best known citizens of Logan, who thereafter bore the 
title of "Judge," although their names do not appear in the roster of 
the bench proper. James Mcllvain, Levi Garwood, James McPher- 
son, Abraham Elder, Joshua Robb, Gabriel Slaughter, William 
Hoge, Noah Z. McColloch, W. H. McKinnon and Peter Kelly were 
among the list of associates, none of whom were appointed until 
after Judge Parrish's term closed. 

The establishment, in 1851, of a probate court eliminated the 
associate bench, and the first probate judge to be elected under the 


new law, was Ezra Bennett, who was succeeded by Anthony Casad, 
Samuel B. Taylor, W. L. Nelson, R. E. Pettit, T. Miltonberger, L. E. 
Pettit, J. D. McLaughlin, W. S. Plum, John C. Hover, John R. Cas- 
sidy (for about eleven months), Don A. Detrick (for about six 
weeks), and Ernest Thompson. 

Judge Benjamin Metcalf, of Allen county, elected in 1852, was 
the first judge of the common pleas court to preside under the new 
constitution, serving for five years. Judge William Lawrence, the 
first of the Logan county judges, succeeded, being elected in 1857, 
and serving until 1864, when he resigned to accept a seat in the Na- 
tional Congress, the appointee to fill his place being Jacob S. Conklin 
of Shelby county, who was afterward elected regularly, retaining 
the position until 1872. P. B. Cole of Union county followed Judge 
Conklin, presiding for five years, and succeeded by John L. Porter, 
also of Union county, who held the position until 1882. The honor 
then returned to Logan county, in the election of John A. Price of 
Bellefontaine, who administered justice from 1882 until 1897, a 
period of fifteen years — or five years longer than any other judge of 
this district or county in the century of justice just completed. 
Judge Price was succeeded in 1897 by Duncan Dow, also of Belle- 
fontaine, who presided for ten years, being followed in 1907 by John 
M. Broderick, of Union county. During the term of Judge Brod- 
erick, a law was passed by the state legislature providing for single 
county jurisdiction, thus creating Logan county a separate judicial 
district, and under this law Judge John C. Hover is the first to occupy 
the judicial chair. 

Hon. William Lawrence, A.M., LL.D., lawyer, jurist, states- 
man, author, educator, banker and agriculturist, born June 26, 1819, 
at Mount Pleasant, Ohio (ten years after Benjamin Stanton, of the 
same town), was the son of Joseph and Temperance (Gilchrist) 
Lawrence, and his early education was secured in the schools of his 
native village. In 1830 the parents retired from the town to a farm, 
where the father continued to follow his trade of blacksmithing, and 
the services of the boy were requisite in this occupation, in which he 
dutifully acquiesced, although he found it uncongenial. However, 
he kept up his studies, and in 1831 was rewarded by being placed 
under the instruction of Rev. John T. Tidball, of a then recently 
opened classical seminary, near Steubenville. Here he studied for 
five years, assisting his father at intervals until the spring of 1836, 
in the autumn of which year he entered Franklin college at New 
Athens, Ohio, graduating two years later with the highest honors 
of the institution. Bending every step of his life toward his chosen 
goal, the law, young Lawrence at once began his legal studies under 
James L. Gage, of Morgan county, at the same time maintaining his 
economic independence by teaching school in Pennsville and Mc- 
Connellsville, where he met and (later) married Miss Cornelia 
Hawkins, daughter of Col. William Hawkins of that place. In the 
fall of 1839 he entered the law department of Cincinnati college, and 
took his degree in the following March, at an age too early to admit 
him to the bar. In the interval before attaining his majority, he 
reported the proceedings of the Ohio Legislature for the State 
Journal, and also was correspondent from Columbus for two well- 


known newspapers of the day, at the same time acquiring by obser- 
vation an intimate knowledge of legislative methods and parlia- 
mentary tactics. After a few months' preliminary law practice in 
Zanesville, Mr. Lawrence came to Bellefontaine in July, 1841, and 
thereafter was in continuous active legal work until his death in 
May, 1899, at the age of seventy-nine years. The death of his bride 
in 1843 occurred three months after their marriage, and in 1845 Mr. 
Lawrence married Miss Caroline M. Miller, who was the mother of 
their six children. 

No brief sketch can do justice to this extraordinary man's 
career. His integrity, both personal and public, was unswerving 
and unassailable. To a mind broadly schooled was united a signal 
capacity for mental labor, a profound understanding of legal and 
judicial principles, and a thoroughness in detail, which made him the 
most imposing character of the legal forum of his day and place, as 
well as one of the greatest incentives to professional emulation 
instanced in Logan's first century. As a practicing lawyer, he won 
some of the greatest land cases ever argued in the United States 
court of last resort. He edited the Logan County Gazette for two 
years, and for seven years was editor of the Cleveland Western Law 
Monthly. He was sent to the state legislature for eight years, and 
to the National Congress for ten years. He was supreme court 
reporter in 1851, and the author of the Ohio free banking law. In 
1871 he organized the Bellefontaine National bank, and served as 
its president until 1896. In the winter of 1876-7 he was elected by 
the Republicans in Congress to argue the claims of Rutherford B, 
Hayes in the great election contest. He was first comptroller of the 
United States treasury from 1880 to 1885, and first vice president 
of the American Red Cross after its incorporation in 1882. He was 
the author of two or three score works of permanent value upon 
law, science and business, and was a recognized authority upon all 
questions pertaining to wool, from grazing to tariff, holding at 
times the presidency of the Ohio State, and the National Wool 
Growers' associations, and contributing frequent articles to their 
journals and bulletins. Neither in an act or capacity is there occa- 
sion for apology in the life of Judge William Lawrence. 

No name in the annals of Logan county is spoken with greater 
pride and reverence than that of Judge William N. West, the most 
brilliant of her legal lights, and a figure of national prominence, but 
none the less a citizen of sincere, fraternal spirit. 

Judge West was born in Millsboro, Washington county, Penn- 
sylvania, in February, 1824. At six years of age he came with his 
parents, Samuel and Mary (Clear) West, to Knox county, Ohio, 
where he was inured to the hardships incident to pioneering, while 
obtaining his early education under the usual difficulties of frontier 
life, subsequently entering Jefferson college, in Pennsylvania, from 
which institution he graduated in 1846, with honors. Following his 
graduation, he taught public school in Kentucky, with James G. 
Blaine, was a tutor in Jefferson college, and an associate professor 
in Hampden-Sidney college in Virginia, until 1850, when he came 
north to Bellefontaine, to engage in the study of law with Judge 
William Lawrence. He was admitted to the bar and to partnership 


with Judge Lawrence at the same time, in 1851, and immediately 
came into prominence both in practice of law and in politics, being 
elected prosecuting attorney in 1852. Four years later, in 1856, he 
was elected to the general assembly, and served two terms. In 
1860 he was sent as a delegate to the Republican national convention 
which nominated Abraharn Lincoln. He was elected to the state 
senate in 1863, holding his seat until his election as attorney general 
of Ohio, in 1867, during the administration of Rutherford B. Hayes. 
This latter position he filled with the distinction which had by that 
time become expected of him, and, declining the United States con- 
sulship to Rio Janeiro, offered to him in 1869, he was elected judge 
of the supreme court of Ohio in 1871, and served from January, 1872, 
until February, 1873, when he resigned, because of the failure of his 
sight, but not before he had demonstrated the marvelous retentiye- 
ness of his memory and the profundity of his legal learning, which 
enabled him to proceed unassisted in the exercise of his official 
duties though it was chiefly at his recommendation that a rule v^as 
adopted requiring all court records and briefs to be printed to facili- 
tate reading. 

Judge West became a member of the constitutional convention 
in 1873, continuing throughout the session. He was nominated by 
the Republicans for governor of Ohio in 1877, a season which was 
characterized by various labor disturbances, notably the great rail- 
road strike, which inevitably became an issue of the campaign. 
With native straight-forwardness. Judge West met the issue, offer- 
ing, in his great speech at Cleveland, a solution of the question 
which was the original advocacy of the principle of profit-sharing 
between manufacturer and employee ; but while since successfully 
adopted by many firms, the idea was then so far in advance of public 
thought that he was misunderstood by both sides. Nevertheless, 
he continued his campaign, winning many supporters and enlight- 
ening the thoughtful. Misquoted, he deigned not to controvert, but 
persisted in the exposition of his idea that the working man's labor 
is his capital, which at last gained nation-wide attention ; and though 
the governorship was lost to him, his reputation was broadened and 
enhanced by the staunch honesty of his course. 

In 1884 Judge West was once more a delegate to the Republican 
national convention, which met at Chicago, and by reason of his 
national reputation as an orator was given the very distinguished 
honor of placing in nomination for the presidency the name of James 
G. Blaine, who was made the nominee of the convention. 

In the field of legal practice his talents had no limitations, 
though he was never forgetful that "thrice armed is he who hath his 
quarrel just," and his comprehensive grasp of every meritof his 
case and of the law applying to it, seconded by an equal ability to 
present the case to judge and jury, made him well nigh invincible in 
the court room. He became an acknowledged authority in civil and 
corporation law throughout the middle west, and upon all questions 
affecting public welfare he was a leader and molder of thought. 
As supreme judge, "the beam of justice stood sure," and his judg- 
ments were as unimpeachable as his character. 

As a speaker, his oratory was the spontaneous utterance of 


principles deeply fixed and supplemented by vast knowledge of 
his subject; for his forensic ability was a gift, an instinct, a genius 
of eloquence which could not fall to the commonplace, and which, 
under the stimulus of excited thought, or strong emotion, rose to 
inspired heights, swaying his hearers with irresistible force. As 
"The Blind Man Eloquent" he is still most widely and loving 

Judge West was married in 1851 to Miss Elizabeth Williams, 
who was the mother of his four sons, William A., John E., Clarence 
and Samuel A. Mrs. West died in 1871, and he subsequently mar- 
ried Mrs. Clara Gorton, who also preceded him to the "undiscovered 
country." His death occurred in March, 1911. 

Judge John A. Price, third and youngest son of Charles Fen- 
ton Mercer and Martha Mary (Kelly) Price, was born on the 
ninth of November, 1840, in Callaway county, Missouri. His 
ancestors on both sides were Virginians, and his paternal grand- 
father was Samuel Price, a captain of the Virginia line, on conti- 
nental establishment, in the revolutionary war. His maternal 
grandfather, John Kelly, emigrated from Virginia to Logan county, 
Ohio, in 1818, settling in the Mad river valley on a farm which 
for nearly one hundred years remained in possession of the Kelly 
family. Here his daughter Martha Mary was courted and married 
by the young guest from Virginia, Charles Fenton Mercer Price, 
and from here the young couple removed to Missouri in the early 
years of their married life. Charles Fenton Mercer Price died in 
Missouri at the age of twenty-seven years, when the subject of our 
sketch was three years old, and his widow and children then 
returned to Logan county to reside. John A. Price received his 
formal education in the country schools and the West Liberty high 
school, and has supplemented that equipment by wide and con- 
stant reading. His knowledge of books is unusual, and his ability 
to quote from the masterpieces of literature indicates a discrimi- 
nating taste and a cultured mind. After teaching for several terms 
in the country schools, Mr. Price, in 1860, when nineteen years of 
age, began the study of law in the office of the well known law 
firm of Stanton & Allison of Bellefontaine. In 1861 he enlisted as 
a private in the Thirteenth Ohio volunteer infantry, the first com- 
pany raised in Logan county for service in the war of the rebellion. 
The victim of an acute attack of pneumonia, he was honorably 
discharged at Columbus before his regiment was ordered to the 
field. In 1863, his health restored, he again enlisted, becoming a 
member of Company K, Fifth Ohio volunteer colored regiment, in 
which he was commissioned first lieutenant. He was at the front 
until the latter part of 1864, and participated in the sieg'e of 
Petersburg. In 1862 Mr. Price was admitted to the bar, and in 
1864, while still in the army, he was elected prosecuting attorney 
of Logan county, to which office he was re-elected in 1866, and 
again in 1868. In 1869 he resigned the office of prosecuting attorney, 
having been elected to represent his county in the Ohio legislature. 
He served in this capacity one term, declining a re-election, as he 
preferred to devote his time to his profession. In 1881 Mr. Price 
was elected judge of the court of common pleas for the district 


composed of Logan and Union counties, was re-elected in 1886, 
and again in 1891, holding the office continuously for fifteen years, 
a record without parallel in the history of the judiciary of the 
district. Judge Price's qualifications as a jurist are admirably pre- 
sented in the following tribute paid him by a member of the Belle- 
fontaine legal fraternity: "Mr. Price's term on the bench was 
distinguished by the highest legal ability. To wear the ermine 
worthily it is not enough that one possess legal acumen, is learned 
in the principles of jurisprudence, familiar with precedents, and 
thoroughly honest. Many men, even when acting uprightly, are 
wholly unable to divest themselves of prejudice, and are uncon- 
sciously warped in their judgments by their own mental charac- 
teristic or educational pecuHarities. This unconscious and variable 
disturbing force enters more or less into the judgment of all men, 
but in the ideal jurist this factor becomes so small as not to be 
discernible in results, and loses its potency as a disturbing force. 
Judge Price was exceptionally free from all judicial bias. His 
varied legal learning and wide experience in the courts, the patient 
care with which he ascertained all the facts bearing upon every 
cast which came before him, gave his decisions a solidity and an 
exhaustiveness from which no member of the bar could take 

Judge Price's decisions were rarely reversed by higher courts, 
and his legal ability, his fairness, his probity, gave him a wide 
reputation. His charges to a jury excited much favorable comment, 
and are rated as classics among their kind. After retiring from the 
bench. Judge Price resumed the private practice of law, in which 
he is still actively engaged. He is president of the Logan County 
Bar association, and has been at that bar longer than any other 
member of the association. A gentleman of the old school, believ- 
ing in the dignity of his profession, distinguished in bearing and 
courtly in manner. Judge Price is a representative of a type which 
is, unhappily, fast passing away. In politics Judge Price is an 
old-fashioned Republican, and has done much hard work for his 
party. In matters of civic interest he is a progressive conservative, 
and invariably uses his eflfort and his influence to bring about the 
best results for the common good. He has always been deeply 
interested in the school system, and unfailingly gives his vote and 
his support to every measure designed to further the cause of 
education. On the 7th of February, 1865, John A. Price was united 
in marriage with Miss Caroline McClure of Bellefontaine. Five 
children have blessed their union : Effie Kelly, now Mrs. Thomas 
S. Gladding of Montclair, New Jersey ; Annie Allison ; Mabel Mc- 
Clure, who died in 1881 ; Charles Fenton Mercer, who died in 1882, 
and Carlotta Knox, now Mrs. Thomas M. Shea of Bellefontaine. 

Judge Duncan Dow was born in Logan county on the home 
farm of his parents, Robert L. and Harriet (Brewster) Dow, March 
13, 1843. The Dows are of immediate Scottish ancestry, Mr. and 
Mrs. David Dow coming from Scotland in 1818 with their young 
family, and settling very soon after in Logan county. Robert Dow 
became a prominent citizen of the county early in life, and served 
in the Civil war first as captain of the 45th O. V. I., and later 


as adjutant of the 132nd regiment. Duncan Dow began his educa- 
tion in the one-room school of his home district, but later attended 
the Bellefontaine schools, and finished the course at Geneva col- 
lege, Northwood, Logan county. He then took up the study of 
law in the office of Judge Lawrence, in 1865, after which he attended 
the Cincinnati law school, from which he graduated in 1868, and 
entered into partnership with the McLaughlins, father and son, an 
association which was maintained for twenty-nine years, until the 
election of J. Duncan McLaughlin to the probate bench and of 
Duncan Dow to the common pleas bench of Logan county. 

In the meantime, however, Judge Dow had been elected, during 
his first year of practice, to the prosecuting attorneyship, an office 
which he held for two terms. In 1875 he was elected to the lower 
branch of the state legislature, being returned for a second term, 
and in 1885 he was sent to the state senate, where, during two suc- 
cessive terms, he originated and framed several bills of importance, 
his greatest fame as a legislator resting upon the Dow Liquor law, 
which, passing both houses of the assembly, was made a law May 
1, 1886. It imposed a heavy tax upon all persons engaging in the 
sale of intoxicating liquors, and provided for municipal prohibition 
and regulation, and had the effect of benefiting the state treasury 
to the extent of about three and one-half millions annually. R. P. 
Kennedy, who was lieutenant governor at the time of its passage, 
said of Judge Dow : "His name will be associated for all time with 
the greatest legal enactments for the suppression of vice and the 
uplifting of his fellow men." Gov. Foraker, discussing the law after 
twenty-five years of enforcement, said: "It is the best regulative 
liquor law ever framed in the world." 

The election of Judge Dow, in 1897, gave opportunity for the 
exercise of his judicial faculties, and he brought to the bench not 
only a love of justice, but a native sense of justice, ripened by years 
of painstaking legal research and sustained by positive but cool 
conviction. Seldom, if ever, was a decision of his reversed. An 
active party Republican, he was, when on the bench, faithful to law 
and justice alone, and was held in highest esteem, irrespective of 
political creeds, by all his confreres. That his strict sense of justice 
was tempered with the "quality of mercy" is apparent in his appoint- 
ment by Gov. Herrick to the state board of pardons after his retire- 
ment from the bench and his reappointment by Gov. Harris, the 
honor being bestowed in recognition of his personal worth. He 
was an ardent supporter and member of the United Presbyterian 
church, standing high in the local and general councils of that 
body. His interest in church, state and nation was broad and vivid ; 
but he was, after the judge incorruptible, the citizen pre-eminent, 
holding his home city the best in the world. His sudden death from 
heart failure, on the afternoon of Friday, April 15, 1910, just as he 
was leaving the (old) postoffice in company with two friends, was 
a deep shock to the whole community, and felt throughout the state, 
upon which his public services left an indelible impress. 

Always frail of health and slight in physique. Judge Dow, by 
efficient systematizing of his labors, surmounted these difficulties 
and attained his sixty-seventh year, as dauntless in purpose and 




resolve as when he first embarked on his career. His lifelong 
integrity was a universal theme in his eulogies, and the text of the 
memorial sermon, "Know ye not that there is a prince and a great 
man fallen this day in Israel?" fitly expressed the sentiment of 
the city. 

Judge Dow was survived by his wife, Mrs. Margaret A. Dow, 
and their three daughters, Mrs. E. R. Gebby of Bellefontaine, Miss 
Florence Dow, at present (1918-19) general director of recreation 
at Atlanta, Georgia, for the government, and Mrs. (Rev.) Benjamin 
F. White of Long Branch, New Jersey. 

Judge John C. Hover, born December 1, 1866, on a farm, a 
native of Logan county, is as nearly an absolute American as can 
be found within its borders, the Hover ancestry having come to 
America more than two centuries ago, and having in succeeding 
generations identified themselves with the cause of freedom and 
independence in this country. Two of his ancestors fought with 
the colonies in the French and Indian war, one of them being taken 
prisoner by the French. A ransom was demanded by the French 
for their prisoners, which in his case was paid by a French officer 
and he was liberated. Judge Hover's great-great-grandfather, 
Henry Hover, served as a captain of the New Jersey line in the 
revolution. His son, George Hover, emigrated from New Jersey 
to western Pennsylvania at an early date, later journeying down 
the Ohio river from Pittsburg to what became Cincinnati, on a 
flatboat, bringing his wife and two little children. A team of horses 
and a wagon loaded with their household effects was the sum of 
their capital. They settled first, after a season of careful pros- 
pecting, on what was known as "Darby Plains," in Madison county, 
where Samuel Hover, the grandfather of Judge Hover, was born, 
at "Little Darby." Samuel had arrived at the age of eight years 
when the family once more migrated north, settling in Logan county 
at what is now the village of Huntsville. Here he grew to man- 
hood, and married Miss Margaret McCracken, of Scotch descent, 
the daughter of John McCracken, and here their son, George M. 
Hover, was born, February 22, 1838. In 1861 George M. Hover 
entered the Union army as a volunteer, and served for nearly four 
years in the conflict for the preservation of the Union, engaging 
in four of the great battles, Chancellorsville, Lookout Mountain, 
Mission Ridge and Gettysburg, scaling Lookout Mountain under 
shot and shell. He was once taken prisoner in an engagement at 
Cumberland Gap, fortunate enough, however, to be exchanged at 
the end of twenty days. A brother, John Calvin Hover, for whom 
the subject of this sketch is named, also served in the war, giving 
his life for the cause at the battle of Rasaca river, Georgia. 

George M. Hover married, September 5, 1865, Miss Mary Irwin, 
of Irish ancestry, also a native of Logan county, and daughter of 
George and Margaret Irwin, and their eldest son, John Calvin 
Hover, is the present judge of the Logan county court of common 

The young John" Calvin had no royal road to preferment, but 
began his education in the country schools near his home, from 


which he went to the Northwood normal, afterward old Northwood 
college, that pioneer institution of higher education in which so 
many of Logan county's men and women were started upward, had 
removed to Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania, and later attended the Ohio 
Northern university at Ada, Ohio. The following eleven years were 
spent in teaching, barring a few years when a break in health dis- 
abled him, and in this great practical university Judge Hover found 
that medium of development in which so many eminent men have 
acquired mental poise and control. 

The law, however, was Judge Hover's ultimate ambition, and 
in 1895, while still teaching in the grammar schools of Huntsville, 
he began reading law with A. Jay Miller of Bellefontaine, a recent 
graduate of Princeton university and the Cincinnati law school, 
and an able and worthy preceptor. In the fall of 1897 he entered 
Cincinnati law school, from which he graduated the tenth day of 
the following June, taking the degree of bachelor of laws, having 
been admitted to the bar at Columbus a few days previous. He 
began the practice of law at once in Bellefontaine, devoting himself 
to his profession with steady diligence and winning admission to 
federal court practice in 1900; after which he continued to practice 
with increasing and signal success until elected to the probate bench 
in the fall of 1908, taking office February 9, 1909. While nearing 
the end of his sixth year as probate judge, he was elected, by a 
large majority, in the fall of 1914, to the court of common pleas, 
being the first judge to preside since the establishment of single 
county jurisdiction. He took his place as judge of Logan county 
on the first day of January, 1915, and is now serving his fifth year 
with dignity and distinction, his reputation growing with every 
term of court. His decisions stand the test of review by the superior 
courts without reversal or modification, almost without exception. 
To be a just judge requires not only honesty and not only knowl- 
edge, but wisdom, breadth, firmness, calmness, integrity, fearless- 
ness, an abiding sense of justice, a temper of mercy, and the ability 
and will to place personal feelings under foot. Every one of these 
qualities Judge Hover possesses. 

Litigation is no longer so broad a field as it was in the days of 
old. Points have grown less and less tangible. Justice and injus- 
tice are more and more difficult of dififerentiation. But through the 
maze of latter-day legal hair-splitting. Judge John C. Hover is draw- 
ing the thread of jurisprudence with safe discrimination. His life 
history is still in the making, for he is yet in the early prime, but it 
bids fair to make a page to which his native county will have cause 
to point with pride. 

On December 21, 1898, Judge Hover was united in marriage 
with Miss Carrie L. Simms, a Huntsville girl, the marriage, how- 
ever, taking place at Cincinnati, where her family had removed from 
Huntsville a short time before. Mrs. Hover is a daughter of Payton 
S. Simms and wife, a hardy Logan county pioneer family of Scotch- 
Irish descent, who settled at an early day on the Miami river near 
McGraw chapel. Judge and Mrs. Hover have one child, a son, John 
Curry Hover, now a senior in the Bellefontaine high school. 


The Logan County Press 

The newspaper of any community is as vital a necessity to 
its life as are lungs to the animal mechanism. Through the press 
the deeds and passions of a people must be mingled, the one in- 
vigorating and renewing the other for the benefit of the whole 
social structure, as pure air vitalizes the blood and renews the bodily 
tissues. No mere blowing of bellows is sufficient. There must be 
spontaneous life in the organ which is to minister to and sustain 
the social existence. This spontaneity was unmistakably present 
in the germ of the first periodical established in Logan county — 
a germ which developed through many vicissitudes, without inter- 
ruption, and from which in time curiously evolved two periodicals, 
each possessing the vitality of the original, yet constituting entities 
as complete and independent as are the two jellyfish that today may 
be counted where yesterday was but one. 

The immortal journalistic germ of Logan county — as sponta- 
neous a growth as may be instanced in the middle west, was dis- 
covered by David Robb, who nurtured it in the "Logan County 
Gazette," which he originated in Bellefontaine in 1830. 

Mr. Robb did not long remain the proprietor of the little sheet, 
but after giving it a local habitation and a name, it passed into the 
keeping of Hiram B. Strother, an astute political manager and sup- 
porter of the Whig party, whose local mouthpiece the paper became. 
It is not in adverse criticism that Mr. Strother has been called a 
"wire-puller" — that vernacular characterization of his method of 
party manipulation. Mr. Strother believed honestly in his methods, 
whatever may be thought of them now, and in other circles he 
might easily have ranked as a diplomat. That he "had a way wi' 
'im" is a fact well established. Mr. Thomas Robb, who afterward 
became editor of the "Lima Argus," was for a short time associated 
with Mr. Strother on the local paper, the name of which was short- 
ened to "The Gazette." "The Gazette" supported Henry Clay in 
the campaign of 1832, and its editor wielded great influence through 
his paper and personally. To Strother's work in this campaign is 
attributed the long-continued ascendancy of the Whig and Repub- 
lican parties in Logan county. Robert Stuart, later of Indianapolis, 
was a partner of Strother for a short time in 1835, at which date 
the "Gazette" suggested William Henry Harrison for president, 
thus seizing the honor of first editorial mention of his name, which 
afterward swept the nation like wild-fire with its popularity. 

The "Gazette" at this time was about one-third the average 
newspaper size at the present day, and printed on an old ramage 
press, requiring four impressions for each copy. A ncAv iron press 
was installed in 1836, and the paper "enlarged" to six colums, while, 
in order to utilize the new display type (and to please the fancy 
of the journeyman printer, Nicholas Sullivan), the name was 
enlarged to "The Bellefontaine Gazette and Logan County Adver- 
tiser," which load it bore for four years. 

In 1839, however, Mr. Strother retired permanently from the 
paper. William Hubbard, born at West Liberty May 11, 1821, came 
to Bellefontaine in 1832, and at the age of eleven years entered the 


Gazette printing office to learn printing under Mr. Strother. He 
continued there for five years, attending school when possible, until 
1837, when he left journalism and began the study of law, at the 
same time teaching school at West Liberty to maintain himself. 
When Mr. Strother retired, in the fall of 1839, young Hubbard, 
then aged eighteen, acted as editor and publisher for a few months, 
Benjamin Stanton also contributing editorial articles when his pro- 
fessional duties would permit, until the spring of 1840, when Wil- 
liam Penn Clark, afterward a distinguished lawyer, purchased the 
establishment and continued the paper under the caption "The 
Logan Gazette." Mr. Clark was a writer of decided virility and 
abundant initiative. He carried on the campaigns of the succeeding 
four years with brilliancy and the courage of conviction. He sold 
out to Dr. C. B. Large in 1844, but after one year. Dr. Large found 
the responsibility too heavy for his failing years, and in 1845 the 
paper was purchased by William Lawrence (Judge Lawrence), who 
devoted his distinguished talents to it for a few months, and then 
engaged as editor and publisher William Hubbard, who had found 
his law practice less congenial than journalism. Two years later, 
"by a liberal and indulgent arrangement on the part of Mr. Law- 
rence," Mr. Hubbard purchased the establishment and took his 
younger brother, Thomas Hubbard, into partnership. For the next 
seven years the brothers conducted the paper. Both were men of 
ability, touched with real genius for journalism, and possessing 
literary talent of high order. 

Somewhere along the way through this period of party change 
and development, the two young men had received impressions 
which gradually reversed their political views, and from editing a 
Whig newspaper they became, in time, rather violent partisans of 
the opposition ranks. In 1854, as the Republican party was evolv- 
ing itself from the Whig, "William H. West & Co." purchased 
the establishment from the Hubbards, and gave the Repub- 
lican spirit, hovering thus far disembodied, a local habitation. After 
a year the "habitation" was returned by sale to its now Democratic 
owners and editors, but the "Republican," at last a vigorous body, 
established itself in a new and independent headquarters. Logan 
county now had two newspapers instead of one. The "Gazette" 
was published steadily by the Hubbard brothers until 1863, when 
it suspended for three years while William Hubbard established 
himself at Napoleon, Ohio, as editor of the "Napoleon Northwest," 
which he continued to edit until his death. Thomas Hubbard 
revived the "Gazette" in 1866, soon after changing its name to "The 
Examiner," since which its publication has been without pause. 
In 1890 a daily edition was begun in connection with the original 
weekly, and both of these survive in vigorous condition. Since the 
death of Mr. Hubbard in April, 1903, the "Weekly Examiner" has 
been the property of Miss Josephine Hubbard and Miss Adah Hub- 
bard, who edit it personally. The "Daily Examiner" is owned by 
H. K. Hubbard & Co., and its editor-in-chief is Miss Josephine 
Hubbard, assisted by an able staff. It is a newspaper of clean, 
high character, and gives its earnest support to every good 
movement in the community, as well as a fair and impartial dis- 


tribution of the news, without regard to its avowed politics — in 
which department it has always been consistently Democratic. In 
passing, the Hubbard brothers and sisters of today as a group do 
honor to the name and memory of their parents, in their life and 
work. The youngest member of the family, Frank McKinney 
Hubbard (or, as he is better known, "Kin" Hubbard), is the well- 
known humorist of the "Indianpolis News," whose quaint and 
original creation, "Abe Martin," corner store philosopher, now 
sixteen full years before a daily public, still dispenses with unfailing 
spontaneity fresh draughts of healthy, homely wit) keen and 
laughter provoking. 

The "Republican," founded by William H. West, James Walker 
and Lemuel S. Powell, passed from them to L. D. Reynolds, who 
conducted a vigorous and aggressive campaign in 1860, in the cause 
of the new party and its candidate, Abraham Lincoln. Succeeding 
Reynolds came David R. Locke, who soon became famous far 
beyond Logan county as "Petroleum V. Nasby," through his "Let- 
ters from Confederate Cross Roads" and from "Saints' Rest, Noo 
Gersey." Early in 1865, J. Q. A. Campbell, returned to Ohio from 
the battlefields of the civil war, sought a journalistic opening, and 
upon his quest met Mr. Locke, who made him an offer for the 
purchase of the "Republican." This Mr. Campbell, who had already 
edited a paper in Iowa before entering the army, decided to accept, 
and on Friday, January 27, 1865, Mr. Locke, in retiring, introduced 
his successor to the Bellefontaine public. During the year or two 
preceding this event James Walker had been connected with the 
"Republican," and for a short time after January, 1865, he remained 
one of the staff, but in April of that year, Mr. Campbell assumed 
sole control of the paper, and for nearly thirty-nine years thereafter 
waged gallant war through its columns against existing evils and 
for the promotion of the public good. Always a strong party organ, 
the "Republican" led vigorous drives for civic betterment without 
regard to political lines or favor. Its editor was an absolutely fear- 
less enemy of the liquor traffic, which he regarded as a moral sore, 
and fought on moral grounds. Unpopular as the fight may have 
been in the outset, the consistent character of its leader won the 
support of the best minds in all parties. Many political enemies, 
in fact, became firm friends in the support of temperance, and not 
a few of the followers of John Barleycorn deserted to the "dry" 
ranks: Out of Bellefontaine to the legislature went the authors of 
the Township Local Option law, the Dow law, and the Aikin law, — 
a legal triad for which the whole state of Ohio owes a debt of 

In securing local municipal ownership of public utilities (in 
which Bellefontaine leads Ohio cities) the work of the "Repub- 
lican" was also a mighty factor. The editor was an educator as well 
as a fighter, both in and out of print, and rarely lost a fight or a 

Out of the "Republican" ofifice have gone many whose appren- 
ticeship there opened the gates to larger fields of journalism or 
public service, while others, whose public lives have been bounded 
by Logan county alone, have been drawn into fellowship with its 


whole constituency through their work in its correspondence col- 
umns. Among these may be mentioned "Clifton" Brooks of North- 
wood, Mrs. D. P. Rogers of Richland, N. V. Speece of Quincy, 
"Slick" Elder of Huntsville, "Old Eagle" James of East Liberty, 
"Mack" Hulsizer of Monroe township, Eber Norviel of Middleburg, 
"Donkey" Randall of Marmon's Valley, "Fishy" Clarke of Lake 
Ridge, "N. A. Fus" (Ed Nafus) of Belle Centre, and George A. 
Henry of Jefferson township, who for over thirty years wrote his 
quaint letters from the hill farm under the pseudonym of "Old 
Bunkum." There is a copy of the "RepubHcan" dated October 22, 
1863, at the Henry cottage just south of Bellefontaine, which, after 
fifty-five years' preservation, is still white and pliable as to paper 
and clear and bright as to printer's ink, while scattered through its 
neat columns of old-fashioned type are many items which waken 
old echoes of long-forgotten things and days. The mercantile 
advertisements display names above whose owners the "mossy mar- 
bles" have rested for half a century, yet are still familiar to Loganite 
ears ; the government was calling then, as now, 1918, for soldiers ; 
and among the local items is a notice reading: "Married — by the 
Rev. George L. Kalb, Miss Emily Robb to George A. Henry." (It 
was Dr. Kalb's first wedding ceremony after coming to Bellefon- 
taine.) At the top of the title-page is the penciled greeting from 
a friend in the office, "Good luck to ye, lad !" 

In August, 1883, the "Republican" increased its issues to twice 
weekly, being the first of Bellefontaine papers to change from the 
weekly publication. The "Examiner," which retained its weekly 
form, was the first office to issue a daily edition in the city. 

The "Mac-a-chack Press," started by Abram S. Piatt and W. H. 
Gribble in West Liberty late in 1858, was removed to Bellefontaine 
by Mr. Gribble, and became the "Bellefontaine Press," passing from 
Mr. Cribble's ownership to P. S. Hooper, and on to Martin Bar- 
ringer, who made a specialty of job printing, then to J. H. Fluhart, 
who renamed it "The Index," under which name it was sold to 
J. H. Bowman. W. S. Roebuck was taken into partnership in 1879, 
and in 1882 the establishment was moved from the old Bellefontaine 
Bank building to the Opera block, where three years later the firm 
became Roebuck and Brand. In 1894 the business was incorporated 
as the Index Printing and Publishing Company. In 1903, upon the 
final retirement of Mr. Campbell from the "Republican," to accept 
the Bellefontaine postmastership, the Index company purchased 
the "Republican," and the two papers were consolidated under the 
name, the "Index-Republican," of which LeRoy Blessing is the 
editor, and under whom it has become a daily paper with a wide 

Mr. Blessing is a native of Bellefontaine, and is glad to be 
known as a local product, and it is no more than fair to say that 
the city likes him, too. His talent for the lecture platform is as 
marked as that for journalism, and as an after-dinner speaker he is 
said to have few rivals. He is a son of Mrs. Frank Blessing, and 
grandson of Walter Sheer, pioneer citizen, sheriff and landlord, 
whose name is interwoven with all the annals of the "early days" 
of city and county. Mrs. Leroy Blessing is the great-granddaughter 


of Peter Leister and the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Jo- 
Hantgen. She is one of Bellefontaine's foremost musical artists. 


Like the first villages of the new country, the earliest roads 
were natural growths of expediency and necessity, seldom the re- 
sult of scientific survey. Without entering into the minutiae of 
the present complete system of public highways and its develop- 
ment, it may be said broadly that the first main traveled roads 
followed the lines of the old Indian trails, which in fact were 
used without change, at first, and were mere bridle paths at most, 
the settlers "blazing" other similar paths, as circumstances de- 
manded, which were later re-surveyed and opened as roads. The 
Ludlow Line, on which the timber was cut in 1800, made the basis 
of the first surveyed road, and the "trace" of Hull's march to Detroit 
in 1812, crossing the county from West Liberty to the northwest, 
discovered routes of which the road builders availed themselves. 
Other roads were cut to meet the demands of the growing popula- 
tion, and to connect settlements for purposes of commercial inter- 
course, until the county is now traversed by unsurpassed pikes and 
roads which make possible the transportation to market by the 
twentieth century motor truck method, of every variety of farm 
produce, regardless of railroad facility. The bottomless black mire 
of swamps and wet seasons, bridged in the early days by "corduroy" 
pavements, is now a thing of the past, and the fifty years of floun- 
dering, through seas of mud varied with chuck-holes, is forgotten in 
the fifty years of progress since the first issue of bonds for road 
building, inaugurated by Bellefontaine in 1867. Formerly impas- 
sable swamps have been drained by the extensive ditching, and road- 
ways straightened and shortened by building solid pikes across those 
old barriers to progress. Logan county's wealth of gravel and 
limestone has been a wonderful factor in pike building, and with due 
attention, now that the war with Germany is over, the future expense 
of maintaining the road system which has cost the county fully a 
million and a quarter in money, should be comparatively light. 

There was a time, even in the midst of transportation difficulties, 
when the first rumors of the coming of a railroad were listened to 
dubiously by the rural population, and even protested against with 
open animosity or alarm, as something subversive of the old and 
reliable order of things. It was many years before Logan county 
learned all that was to be learned from the railroad method of 
building road beds. 

Through Logan county, from Sandusky on Lake Erie down to 
Dayton at the mouth of Mad river, was built the first railroad pro- 
jected in the state of Ohio. Beginning at the northern terminus in 
1832, it took seven years to reach Bellevue, and eight years more to 
reach Bellefontaine. An opportune financial assistance stretched it 
as far as Springfield in 1848, but it was 1850 before Dayton was 
finally attained. The route, known locally as "The Mad River rail- 
road," was built by local subscriptions along the way, and the 
scarcity of actual money with which to pay stock subscriptions had 


as much or more to do with its slow progress as the engineering 
difficulties encountered. Only painstaking economy and patient 
courage made the ultimate success of the investment possible. R. E. 
Runkle and Robert Patterson of Bellefontaine were, respectively, 
the second vice-president and secretary-treasurer of the road. In 
General Robert P. Kennedy's "Historical Review" is given a minute 
description of the method of road-bed construction and track-laying 
used, the details being taken from the old contracts made by William 
G. Kennedy for the timbering and laying of the track from Belle- 
fontaine to West Liberty. The method, complicated and expensive, 
was soon supplanted by the better, cross-tie, mode still in use. The 
Lake Erie and Mad River railroad, long since extended to Cincin- 
nati, forms a part of the "Big Four" system. 

From 1849 to 1851 the C. C. C. & L (or, as it was at first called, 
the Bellefontaine and Indiana) railroad was built from Union City, 
Indiana, to Bellefontaine, giving rise to the towns of Quincy and 
DeGrafif in Logan county. Stephen Quigley, the engineer of the 
construction train during the building, and his son Brock Quig- 
ley, a conductor later on, were familiar figures on the route for over 
fifty years. In 1852 this route was extended through to Crestline 
and Cleveland, opening the way to eastern markets, and benefiting 
the towns of the northeastern quarter. 

The Bellefontaine and Delaware railroad, projected in 1852 by 
Robert Patterson and William G. Kennedy, was eagerly promoted 
by investors, railroads having attained popularity by that time, but 
the panic of the fifties caused a collapse in railroad building, and 
much money was lost. A revival of the project in 1885 also failed. 
The Detroit, Toledo and Indiana railway, built in 1892-3, passes 
through the southwest corner of Logan county, touching but one 
town, Quincy. The same year, the Toledo and Ohio Central railway 
built a line to Columbus, which enters the county at Ridgeway, and, 
passing south through that fertile district to West Mansfield, has 
given an impetus to progress invaluable to the communities on the 
Scioto slope. 

In 1897 the St. Mary's branch of the "T. and O. C." took up the 
old Bellefontaine and Delaware franchise, and by re-locating the 
"deep cut" across the Mad river hills, successfully crossed the county 
from the northwest, through Lakeview, Lewistown, Bellefontaine, 
Zanesfield, East Liberty and on to Columbus, the Ohio Electric 
road, passing through the county from the Reservoir district, 
through Huntsville, Bellefontaine and West Liberty to the south, is 
another incalculable transportational advantage, the railroad map 
of Logan county now resembling a great wheel of fortune. 

Logan County in the War 

Now, during the closing scenes of the world war, comes a 
season when a backward glance over the various patriotic activi- 
ties occasioned by its grim necessities has become possible, because 
of the lull in the work, which, with the exception of Red Cross 
benevolence, will soon be laid aside, it is hoped, forever. From 
the first the best efifort of the highest executive talent of Logan 


county has been enlisted in the ranks of "war workers," and 
in no case is there a more signal instance of efficiency than 
in the conduct of the Liberty Loan campaigns. Chairman 
William Wallace Riddle, appointed in 1917, for the first Liberty 
Loan, has, with the committees then named, served throughout the 
four campaigns ensuing. Few changes have been made in the 
personnel of the committees, which follows with reasonable accu- 
racy: Executive, R. B. Keller, Fred W. Arnold, Fred C. Spittle, 
John D. Inskeep, Alfred Butler, and Isaac Zearing, all of Bellefon- 
taine. County Advisory (chosen from the bankers of the county), 
William B. Ramsey, Bellecentre; T. M. Cooper, Lewistown; A. B. 
Mcllvain, West Liberty; Harry E. Clapper, Huntsville; Harry 
Koogler, DeGraff; Harrison Clay, Quincy; A. L. Votaw, West 
Mansfield; Fremont C. Hamilton, East Liberty; H. O. Huber, Lake 
View; J. W. Ansley, Rushsylvania ; J. D. Headington, West Mans- 
field; William T. Haviland, Bellefontaine. Publicity (chosen chiefly 
from the editorial ranks), J. G. Morris, chairman; John M. Hare 
and Edwin M. Coltcjn, secretaries; Donn C. Bailey, J. C. Martin, 
E. M. Day, Ralph English, LeRoy Blessing, Minnie Liles, Frank G. 
McCracken, S. P. Pond and H. A. Shoemaker. Township chairmen 
were: Union, H. B. Harner; Bokes Creek, W. F, Knight; Perr}', 
Pearl J. Humphreys; Zane, Roy Aspinall ; Rush Creek, J. E. Shaw; 
Monroe, Oren Outland ; Jefferson, Zachary Dougherty ; Liberty, 
Henry Foust; Lake, north, Jonah K. Meredith; Lake, south, T. D. 
Chester; City of Bellefontaine, Herman K. Horn; Harrison, George 
Detrick ; McArthur, J. H. T. Gordon; Richland, P. R. Healy; Wash- 
ington, D. A. Hamer; Miami, DeGraff, W. E. Harris; Quincy, N. P. 
Swank; Pleasant, Marco W. Long; Bloomfield, Eber Hodge; Stokes, 
Frank W. Kerr. Committee of Bellefontaine sales : Anson B. 
Carter, William H. Hamilton, George W. Cronley ; clergy, Dr. W. L. 
Barrett; lodges, Harry N. Kennedy; "Flying Squadron," O. L. Jo- 
Hantgen, J. T. Mcintosh, W. Clay Huston, A. Jay Miller, Rev. F. M. 

The Loans. The First Liberty Loan totaled $232,750.00, from 
twelve hundred and eighty-two subscribers. The second amounted 
to $301,100.00, from nine hundred and fourteen subscribers — an 
apparent falling off in subscribers, which is explained by the cir- 
cumstance that in the tabulation of the Second Loan the subscrip- 
tions from the Big Four railway's office and shop contingent were 
not permitted to appear as a component part of the county's total^- 
which was, in fact, far "over the top." The Third Loan, that of 
April, 1918, was over-subscribed, reaching the figure $665,650.00, 
from three thousand five hundred and twenty-six subscribers. The 
fourth and latest Liberty Loan was the first drive in which the 
work of the Logan county women was recognized as a factor, and 
the results, which exceeded expectations, furnish some interesting 
study. The Women's committee, headed by Mrs. Nell Garwood 
Armstrong, included a large corps of able women already promi- 
nent in Red Cross work. The scheme of the canvass was thorough 
and only four of the townships failed to respond with a sub-commit- 
tee. The women were allotted by the National Women's com- 
mittee with the task of raising fifteen per cent of the entire county 


quota, or, $116,647.00. They responded with $227,150.00, or over 
twenty-eight per cent. Bellefontaine women raised seventy-seven 
per cent of the city's allotment; Belle Center women raised $1,000.00 
more than the city's quota ; DeGraff women raised over seventy per 
cent; West Liberty women over sixty-six per cent; Quincy women 
nearly fifty per cent; Zane township and Rushsylvania women each 
raised about one-third of the local allotments. 

The city of Bellefontaine, men and women together, raised 
nearly two-thirds of the entire county allotment, going "over the 
top" of their own apportionment by $304,300.00, or over three times 
what was required of them. Huntsville and DeGraff were close 
behind with nearly three times the amount of their apportionments. 
Two thousand, two hundred and fifteen men, and six hundred and 
three women subscribed in Bellefontaine, one thousand four hun- 
dred and sixty-seven of the total number being Big Four railway 
employees. Of the city's total subscription of $453,900.00, the Big 
Four men took $139,200.00. 

Women's subscriptions in the whole county, one thousand five 
hundred and forty-five; amount, $227,120.00. Men's subscriptions, 
four thousand eight hundred and fifteen ; amount $742,950.00. Total 
subscriptions, six thousand three hundred and sixty-one; total 
amount, $976,100.00. Over-subscribed, $197,450.00. 

The four loans aggregate $2,175,600.00. For the grand result 
of the campaign in Bellefontaine the meed of credit is divided 
between, first, the magnificent response of the railroad employees; 
second, the work of the women's committee ; and third, the Belle- 
fontaine chairman, Herman K. Horn, and his corps of earnest, 
patriotic workers. 

The draft board for Logan county opened, officially, August 1, 
1917, and its work being now officially closed, a complete report has 
been made as to the number of men included in the draft who were 
called to the service of the nation in the war with Germany. The 
entire registration resulted in the induction of five hundred and 
seventeen men, of whom four hundred and eighty-two were accepted. 
The total registration was two thousand three, hundred and eighty- 
two men, of whom two thousand three hundred and thirty-three 
were white, and forty-nine colored. Fourteen were aliens. Only 
thirty-five were rejected, while twenty-one were delinquent. En- 
listments after the draft totaled, through the local board, one hun- 
dred and sixteen, making the total number of soldiers passing 
through the county draft board, five hundred and ninety-eight. 

This, however, does not represent the man power furnished the 
nation from Logan county, for, previous to the declaration of war 
with Germany, enlistments both in the army and navy had been 
going forward rapidly, through the government stations ; while 
before the draft board was organized a rush of enlistment followed 
the announcement of war. Also, Logan county lads who threw off 
parental restraint and enlisted at other points swell the total service 
of the county to nearly double the number reported by the board. 
From a carefully collected list of names obtained from parents and 
friends of Logan county soldiers and sailors, the service flag at the 
canteen headquarters displays the equivalent of one thousand and 


fifteen stars, which is granted to be, if anything, an under-estimate 
of the actual number. The personnel of the draft board is : Newton 
Archer, president; Dr. E. R. Henning, medical examiner; George 
W. Guy, secretary ; Ray Miller, chief clerk. 

The War Savings Stamp campaign in Logan county, under the 
leadership of William T. Haviland, of Bellefontaine, made an excep- 
tional showing, for which the honors truly due may not be paid 
because each chairman ascribes the honors to the others. The or- 
ganization of the county was perfect, and received most efficient aid 
in the canvass from the publicity committee, composed of O. L, 
JoHantgen, chairman ; Fred W. Arnold, Edward C. Cowman, Frank 
G. McCracken, J. H. Denman, John R. Hare, W. W. Riddle and 
Myran LeSourd. The quota for the county was $601,680.00, and 
the sales amounted, December 1, 1918, to $665,011.00. Of this fine 
total the "Thousand Dollar club," under the chairmanship of Hon. 
John C. Hover, rounded up three hundred and thirty-nine members, 
the largest "club," per capita, of any county in Ohio, and this, too, 
in a county which has one of the lowest bank deposit totals per 
capita of any county in Ohio. So much for captaincy and team 
work! The second prize ofifered for the highest sales made in the 
state by a juvenile during the drive, was also won by a little girl, 
Mary Huston, in Bellefontaine, who trudged on crutches to accom- 
plish her purpose. 

The War Chest Drive opened Monday, September 23, 1918, in 
a raw cold rain which lasted nearly all the week, but failed to damp- 
en the ardor of the workers or their chairman. Judge John C. Hover. 
Figures, while they may not lie, drone monotonously, and except 
for totals they are not given in this report, but a few interesting 
points are brought to light, drawn from the published report of the 
chairman. The organization was complete to the last detail, more 
than thirteen hundred workers having been banded together for 
this drive. 

Of the total population of the county, thirty thousand and 
eighty-four, about one-third, or ten thousand and twenty-seven, were 
expected to subscribe. As a matter of fact, eleven thousand seven 
hundred and eighty did subscribe. Of the townships, eight went 
well over the thirty-three per cent of population expected to sub- 
scribe, and only five fell appreciably below that proportion. Of the 
two prizes offered. Lake township won both, having over fifty per 
cent of her population as subscribers, and also the highest per capita 
subscription, $13.67. Zane and Perry townships came next, with 
forty-eight and forty-five per cent of population, while Bloomfield 
and Perry townships follow closest in per capita subscriptions, with 
$10.13 and $9.28 to their credits. Lake township also had the high- 
est rate per subscriber, $26.78; DeGraff, $26.54, and Bloomfield, 
$25.50. The average amount per capita the county over is $8.82, and 
the average per subscriber is $23.38. 

The Agricultural Society donated a percentage of their gate 
receipts at the county fair, amounting to $241.85, and $18.00 from 
the fine commission. Subscriptions amounted to $265,182.57, making 
a grand total of $265,442.42. About $65,000.00 has already been 
paid in, January 1, 1919, and the disbursements to different depart- 


ments of the field have already begun, being published as made, a 
policy which will be pursued until the end. 

The Logan County Chapter of the American Red Cross. "For- 
ever must I hold you as the pioneer of the Red Cross in America." 
With these words, addressed to Judge William Lawrence of Belle- 
fontaine, by Clara Barton, first president of the American Red Cross, 
under date of October, 1898, the history of the Logan county chapter 
may be said to have had its inception. 

While visiting in Switzerland, prior to the Civil War, Miss 
Barton became acquainted with the international treaty then being 
entered into, by the nations of Europe, at Geneva. Miss Barton 
immediately felt the importance of the United States uniting in this 
treaty, and of the organization of a national society in America, and 
during the Civil War (when she was a nurse in the Union hospitals, 
and was permitted, under flag of truce, to visit Confederate prisons 
and minister to suffering Union soldiers confined therein) and after 
its close, she continued to urge the secretary of state, William H. 
Seward, and the national presidents and secretaries of succeeding 
administrations, to gain the consent of the senate to make the United 
States a party to the treaty of Geneva. Owing to the precedent of 
Mr. Seward's opposition, her appeals were of no avail until after 
the opening of President James A. Garfield's administration, in 1881, 
when, having engaged the assistance of Judge William Lawrence 
and Mrs. Lawrence of Bellefontaine, Ohio, a conference was secured 
with the president, with the hope of persuading him to accept the 
office of president of a Red Cross society. Mr. Garfield hesitated 
to assume the responsibility as well as the honor of the position, but 
the organization, which had been effected, and constitution drawn. 
May 21, 1881, held a subsequent meeting at which Miss Barton was 
chosen president and William Lawrence (then comptroller of the 
United States treasury), vice-president. By Judge Lawrence's 
advice, the association was incorporated, July 1, 1881, those signing 
the articles being: Clara Barton, William Lawrence, W. K. Barnes, 
A. S. Solomons, and Alexander V. P. Garnett. On July 2, 1881, 
occurred the tragic shooting of President Garfield, his death follow- 
ing September 29, 1881. After the accession of Chester A. Arthur 
to the presidency. Judge Lawrence accompanied Miss Barton in 
calling upon President Arthur with a request, which he granted 
willingly, to recommend, in his annual message to the senate, the 
participation of the United States in the Red Cross convention. 
Acting upon this recommendation, the senate concurred, March 1, 
1882, and proclaimed the same July 26, 1882. (United States Stat- 
utes, XXII, 940.) Miss Barton afterward maintained regular cor- 
respondence with Judge and Mrs. Lawrence to the end of their lives, 
a letter written at the close of the Spanish-American war containing 
the words with which this sketch begins. 

Miss Elizabeth Haviland, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. William T. 
Haviland and grand-daughter of Judge and Mrs. William Lawrence, 
was one of the earliest promoters of the Red Cross, and was a speaker 
at the initial meeting, held Friday, May 4, 1917, in the Chamber of 

At this time she elucidated the First Aid work, in which she had 


already finished a course of training. A. F. Rothstein, secretary of 
Chamber of Commerce, presided, and Rev. William C. Welch, of 
St. Patrick's church officiated as secretary at this meeting, and Mrs. 
Frank R. Griffin opened the program with a ringing appeal. A 
temporary organization was effected on this occasion, and a mass 
meeting called for Monday, May 7, at the First Presbyterian church. 
A committee on permanent organization also was directed to report 
at the mass meeting, which was opened at the appointed time, with 
the auditorium of the church crowded to the doors. A. F. Rothstein 
acted as temporary chairman, and upon the report of the organiza- 
tion committee being read and accepted, the permanent officers 
assumed their positions, and the Logan county chapter was ushered 
formally into existence, with Judge Ernest Thompson, chairman; 
Mrs. Frank R. Griffin, vice-chairman ; Miss R. Eva Byers, secretary; 
Alfred Butler, treasurer. In the programme, prepared by Mrs. A. 
Jay Miller and W. W. Hamer, Rev. William C. Welch delivered the 
first address, conveying to the meeting his own enthusiasm and that 
of the previous meeting at the Chamber of Commerce. Miss Joseph- 
ine Valentine, of Urbana, formerly a nurse in Serbia, gave an outline 
of the plan of work, and of the purposes and needs of the National 
Red Cross (under rules of which the local chapter works), explaining 
also the four courses of training authorized and provided for volun- 
teer nurses and workers, viz. : First Aid, Dietetics, Preparation of 
Surgical Dressings and Elementary Hygiene and Nursing. She 
then sketched the working methods of base hospital units, and re- 
lated vividly some of her own experiences in the field hospitals in 
Serbia, where she had assisted in caring for wounded Americans. 
The meeting joined in the sniging of the Battle Hymn, and Mrs. 
W. L. Smith sang a popular war song, accompanied on the piano 
by her daughter. The membership committee, consisting of Father 
Welch, Dr. Hale, George T. Brandon, Rev. William Barrett, Rev. 
John Williamson and Rev. Traverce Harrison, reported the acquisi- 
tion, to date, of two hundred and thirty-two members, Mrs. Char- 
lotte Hamer, aged 88 years, having been the first to register. At 
subsequent meetings the work was carried swiftly forward until 
the organization was complete. Chairmen for the organization of 
the four classes were appointed June 1, 1917, as follows : First Aid, 
Miss May Marquis ; Surgical Dressings, Miss Haviland ; Elementary 
Hygiene and Home Nursing, Mrs. A. Jay Miller; Dietetics, Mrs. 
Mary A. Zerbee. The committee on by-laws consisted of (Mayor) 
U. L. Kennedy, Mrs. Carrie Thompson and Mrs. Frank R. Griffin ; 
and Mrs. Moselle Butler, Miss Haviland, Mrs. Emil Geiger, Mrs. 
Harry Goff and Miss Maud Hiatt constituted the supply committee. 
By the advice of Mr. Charles O'Donnell all temporary committees 
became permanent. A petition for membership in the National Red 
Cross was signed by the same members who had made up the organ- 
ization committee, the honor of the first signature being given to 
Mrs. Charlotte Hamer, followed by Mrs. Moselle E. Butler, Mrs. 
Mary Emery Griffin, Miss Elizabeth L. Haviland, Mrs. Carrie 
Thompson, Judge John C. Hover, Alfred Butler, Mrs. Mary A. Zer- 
bee, U. L. Kennedy and Charles F. O'Donnell. 

On June 24, 1917, at an outdoor meeting held at Highest Point, 


Hon. James M. Cox, Governor of Ohio, became a member of Logan 
County Chapter by formal application. 

By-laws were adopted June 26, 1917. The home of Mrs. George 
Brandon had been previously offered for a regular meeting place 
until a permanent headquarters could be secured, but the Y. M. C. A. 
simultaneously offered the use of the old Folsom residence on North 
Main street, of which they had control, and this offer was acceptea, 
and a house committee appointed with authority to renovate and 
furnish it for ofBces, class and workrooms. At the first meeting held 
in the new chapter house, the house committee, Mrs. Griffin, chair- 
man, and her able assistants, Mrs. Johnson West, Mrs. Blanche 
Miller, Mrs. Claire Hover, Mrs. Maurice Carter, Mrs. Hazel Davis 
and the Misses Gertrude Funk, Lulu Morgan, Marie Kerr, Myrtle 
Armstrong, Helen Patterson and Elizabeth Haviland were voted 
thanks for their service and its fine results. Dr. Clyde Startzman 
was appointed to fill the place of Miss May Marquis, resigned from 
First Aid Organization. The board of directors was named with 
the date of expiration of term as follows : For the year ending 
October 31, 1917, Miss Agnes Pool," Mrs. Frank P. Kerr, Miss R. 
Eva Byers, Hon. Ernest Thompson, Hon. John C. Hover, Mrs. John 
Harner, Mrs. Fremont Hamilton, Mr. William T. Haviland and Mrs. 
Robert Butler. For the year ending October 31, 1918, Mrs. Emil 
Geiger, Mr. Alfred Butler, Mr. Charles O'Donnell, Mr. LeRoy 
Blessing, Mr. John Ansley, Mrs. Mary E. Grififin, Mrs. Grace Good- 
hart, Mrs. F. R. Makemson, Mrs. Mary A. Zerbee and Rev. C. F. 
Irwin. For the year ending October 31, 1919, Mrs. T. F. Wilson, 
Mrs. Louisa B. Barr, Mrs. Nora G. Shoots, Mrs. Freeman Jones, 
Mr. Frank McCracken, Mr. Charles Harshfield, Mr. Harry Koogler, 
Mr. Walter Stanley, Mr. Job Sharp and Rev. William C. Welch. 

Sixteen township branches have been organized in the county, 
each with its own by-laws, and reporting all work to the chapter, 
at Bellefontaine. The Lake township branch includes Lake, Harri- 
son and Union townships, and its by-laws are identical with those 
of the chapter, with its headquarters in the Chapter House. Chapter 
committees for 1918 were : 

Executive : Chairman, Fred Spittle ; secretary. Miss Mary 
Jenkinson; Mrs. R. H. Butler, Mrs. F. C. Hamilton, Mrs. Louisa 
Barr, Harry Koogler, William T. Haviland, Judge Thompson and 
Father Welch. House: Mrs. Chester Miller, Mrs. L. E. Pettit, 
Mrs. Robert Morgan, Mrs. Johnson West, Mrs. Guy Swan and Miss 
Harriet O'Donnell. Stock: Mrs. Frank Grimes and Miss Mary 
Bissell. Supply: Miss Haviland, Miss Madge Lowe, Mrs. Frank S. 
Mitchell. Packing- and Shipping: Mrs. Perry Powell, Mrs. Rob- 
ert Morgan, Mrs. Minnie Kirkpatrick, Mr. E. E. Olsen, Mr. James 
R. Fulton, Mr. Lavon Pittman. Civilian Relief: Chairman, T- D. 
Inskeep, Mrs. A. W. Elliott, Mrs. R. W. Chalfant, Mrs. R. P. Dick- 
inson, Dr. Carrie Richeson, Judge Thompson, Rev. W. T. Mabon, 
U. L. Kennedy and Anson B. Carter. Membership: Dr. J. P. Har- 
bert. Second War Fund Drive: Rev. Mabon, chairman. The 
Canteen committee, created early in the summer of 1918, is com- 
posed as follows: Mesdames W. T. Haviland (commandant), C. D. 
Campbell, E. P. Humphreys, Frank Grimes, D. R. Hennesey (secre- 


tary), Walker Prall (treasurer), Harry Morrow and Messrs. J. H. 
Underkircher, A. P. Humphreys, Max Leonard and H. K. Horn. 
This committee is highly organized, under three captains, each of 
whom conducts the work for one week in rotation, the officers being: 
Company "A", Mrs. Hattie Jones; Company "B", Mrs. Chester 
Miller; Company "C", Mrs. Robert Morgan. A fund for the main- 
tenance of this work was started by the competitive parade and cele- 
bration of July Fourth, 1918, at which about two thousand dollars 
was raised, of which the canteen committee received $800. Thou- 
sands participated in the largest and in many respects the most 
unique festival ever given in Logan county. Detailed description 
is not possible, except for one or two features. Thirty Civil War 
veterans rode in the parade, and the children of the East School 
made a characteristic display, which won second prize. The truly 
original feature, which won the first prize, was a large body of Red 
Cross workers, formed by the joint inspiration of Miss Madge Lowe 
and Mrs. Harry W. Eaton, with Mrs. E. P. Humphreys and Miss 
Mary Allen, into "The Rainbow Division." The ladies were cos- 
tumed, with but two days for preparation, all in white, but wearing 
the Continental tri-cornered hat, with aigrette of color, a sash of 
the same color, and a white wound cane, tied with colored streamer. 
All colors of the rainbow (and intermediate shades) were used, and 
the whole color scheme was worked out in crepe paper, at a neg- 
ligible cost. The colors were arranged in long lines in the march, 
which was so timed as to display in counter-march at the railroad 
for the benefit of a passing troop train. In September, at the 
County Fair, the ladies repeated the attractive feature, with a slight 
change of costume, wearing a hat of solid color, and a military cape 
to match, over the white costume, while at the head of the column 
Mrs. V. W. Ballinger mounted on a white charger, with snow-white 
trappings, personated "America," robed in white and carrying a 
beautiful flag. All prize moneys were donated to the canteen fund 
by the winners. The canteen service will be maintained until the 
soldiers are all returned to their homes from camp and battlefield. 
The headquarters of the work are located in the Railroad Y, M. C. A. 
building on West Columbus street, and a conveniently located 
"hut" on the south side of the tracks gives the workers access to 
trains on any track, at the Big Four Station. Hot coffee and sand- 
wiches, apples and cigars are served to "the boys," who are also 
furnished with postcards if needed, and sick cases are cared for. 
The 1917 Christmas membership campaign brought in $8,113.43, of 
which $4,077 was remitted to the Lake Division, James R. Garfield, 
manager, the local chapter receiving a net amount of $3,382.84 after 
all expenses were paid. 

Special committees, of temporary duration, are : Influenza, 
Messrs. F. W. Arnold, J. D. Inskeep, W. W. Coulter, Mrs. E. P. 
Humphreys and Dr. W. C. Pay. Christmas Cartons, Mesdames C. F. 
O'Donnell, H. K. Humphreys, Margaret Barton, H. N. Thomas and 
Johnson E, West. Collection of fruit pits and nut shells, Dorca"S 
Circle of King's Daughters, Mrs. J. D. Inskeep, chairman. The 
strongest interest naturally centers in the Woman's Work Commit- 
tee, of which Mrs. Robert Morgan was the first chairman, and Mrs. 


J. S. Boyd, vice chairman ; Mrs. Fred Armstrong-, treasurer, and 
Miss Edith Black, secretary, the other members of the committee 
being special instructors in knitting and sewing, cutting and other 
activities. These were : Mrs. Ernest Bryant, Mrs. W. W. Riddle, 
Mrs. Jos. JoHantgen, Mrs. Samuel Tharp, Mrs. O. M. Newell, Mrs. 
George Brandon and Mrs. W. W. Coulter. The first shipment made 
from the chapter, of finished work, consisted entirely of surgical 
dressings and hospital linens, comprising respectively 3,578 and 
3,970 pieces, a total of 7,548 articles of these two classes alone. Sub- 
sequently, Mrs. Morgan's committee accumulated, in addition to 
739 really very useful knitted articles, of hospital linens, 867 pieces, 
and of surgical dressings 1,419 pieces, which were not shipped 
until November 22, 1917, and are, therefore, included in the 
total for the year ending October 31, 1918. Mrs. Morgan's success- 
sor, Mrs. Robert Butler, was appointed in November, but owing to 
her necessary absence from Bellefontaine, Mrs. Butler did not serve, 
and Mrs. O. M. Newell, chairman of Lake township branch, carried 
also the county work ahead, with Miss Myrtle Armstrong as lieu- 
tenant, for the next six months, when Miss Armstrong, with Mrs. 
Harry Morrow, was appointed to lead the Lake township branch 
work, and Mrs. Newell remained at the head of the county commit- 
tee. Her assistants were: Mrs. J. E. West and Mrs. J. M. Kerr. 
The report for the year just ended, October 31, 1918, seventeen ship- 
ments in all, is given below, under the various heads. 

Total woolens or knitted articles, 3,263; hospital garments, 10,- 
204; surgical gauze dressings, 32,756; surgical muslin dressings, 
4.786; layettes (ten pieces to each), pieces, 1,260; refugee garments, 
602. Two hundred comfort kits aggregating 3,200 articles ; linens for 
France, 4,375. Total articles shipped from November 1, 1917, to 
November 1, 1918, 60,446. Total articles shipped since women's 
work began, 67.994. The order from the National Red Cross head- 
quarters is simply, "Carry on." Work along certain lines is, happily, 
no longer necessary, but civilian relief is at all times and seasons the 
field of the Red Cross, and the canteen service is not yet at its crest. 
The women's work will for the present be directed toward refugee 
and rehabilitation supplies, and the new committee appointed is 
Mrs. F. N. Johnson, chairman ; Mrs. Charles Kruse, vice chairman. 
The officers for the year ending October 31, 1919, are: Charles 
Harshfield, chairman; Fred C. Spittle, vice chairman; Mrs. Mary 
Jenkinson, secretary; Rev. W.C. Welch, treasurer. Mrs. George 
Esplin will serve as chairman of the house committee. On the board 
of directors those who will serve until November 1, 1920, are: 
Mesdames Ray Allinger, Frank P. Kerr, Robert H. Butler, John A. 
Harner, Fremont Hamilton, Harry S. Jones and Messrs. Ernest 
Thompson, Fred Spittle and W. T. Haviland. Those who serve 
until November 1, 1921, are : Mesdames George W. Windham. Har- 
ley Plum, W. H. Carey, Milt Kerr, Charles Kruse, Charles O'Don- 
nell and Messrs. Roy Aspinall, L. J. Shoots, O. B. Goodhart and 
Walker Prall. Members-at-large : The president of the Ministerial 
Association, the chairman of the City Union of King's Daughters, 
the president of the Logan County Medical Society and the chair- 
man of the Chamber of Commerce. 


Throughout the entire history of the Logan county chapter of 
the American Red Cross, a spirit of harmony and co-operation has 
prevailed, changes occurring among the committees only when un- 
avoidable circumstances compelled voluntary resignation of in- 
dividual workers, which were never accepted, except with regret, yet 
out of the fine timber of the membership such gaps have been filled 
perfectly, while the former occupants are "remembered by what 
they have done." In this connection it is proper to speak of the 
clerical work done by John Palmer Brandon, for the membership 
committee, in the first months of the chapter and during the mem- 
bership drives. It was the last service Mr, Brandon, for years an 
invalid, was ever able to render, a willing, glad service, still in evi- 
dence in the pages of the membership register and records, though 
the hands that wrote were folded, to write no more, in June, 1918. 
By a pathetic coincidence, Mrs. Herbert Miller, a young soldier's 
bride, who assisted Mr. Brandon in this work, was called to rest 
October, 1918. Mrs. Miller was a victim of "Spanish influenza," 
which she contracted while attending her husband in the hospital 
at Camp Taylor. 

Numerous cases of individual work for the soldiers, unobtru- 
sively accomplished, and not coming under any specified head of 
"Woman's work," might be instanced, among them that of Miss 
Sara Lowe, who with some assistance from her sisters, in obtaining 
silk pieces for the work, made over 700 pinwheels and distributed 
them to the Logan county soldiers as they entrained, bound for 
the service of the nation. 

Mrs. E. A. McKee, who had taken the prescribed course of 
instruction in surgical dressings at Connorsville, in the summer of 
1917, was placed in charge of that department upon her return to 
Bellefontaine in September, and conducted the work from that time 
until the spring of 1918, with great success. The first large ship- 
ment of over 3,500 pieces was done under her chairmanship. A 
"first aid" class was also formed with a small membership, consisting 
of Mrs. Frank Griffin, chairman; Mrs. Robert Colton, Mrs. Will 
McKee, Mrs. E. A. McKee, Mrs. Elmer R. Gebby, Mrs. Ernest 
Bryant, Miss Mary Braden and Mrs. H. K. Humphreys. The in- 
structions were given the class by Dr. Robert Butler, and the 
examinations were conducted by Dr. W. W. Hamer, seven receiving 
certificates in the first. examination. The class then took special 
examination in advanced work in bandaging, and were awarded the 
coveted medal with the bar, one of the first three classes in the 
United States to be so decorated. 

The Medical Profession 

To no factor in the development of a pioneer community does 
history owe higher honor than to the physicians who ministered to 
its sick in the days when drugs were difficult to obtain and almost 
equally difficult to distribute, and when, in addition to the ordinary 
ills of human flesh, the pioneers were plagued with mysterious 
maladies that puzzled the medical profession (as in the case of 
"milk sickness") and when the land was heavy with miasma, and 


grievous epidemics visited the cabins and laid low the men and 
women who had undertaken the "Conquest of Canaan." Typhoid 
fever made its appearance as early as 1839. Smallpox raged in West 
Liberty in 1843, attacking one person in every three — though deaths 
were comparatively few. Dr. S. W. Fuller wrote of it that the diet 
of rice and molasses, and the medication of Epsom salts, to which 
the village was at the time chiefly confined, "could scarcely have been 
bettered." Handkerchiefs were worn as preventive masks. That 
was seventy-five years ago. Interesting to note, in this connection, 
is the fact that in the fall and winter following, an epidemic of 
influenza spread all over the country and carried off numerous vic- 
tims. In March, 1844, spinal meningitis, a disease not then thor- 
oughly understood, made its first fatal inroads, returning in 1851-2. 
Cholera first appeared in 1849, subsiding and then breaking out 
again in 1851-2 with renewed violence. But, so far as records show 
no scourge visiting the county since then has been so widespread 
as the dreaded Spanish influenza, which baffles the preventive and 
curative resources of modern science of medical men everywhere 
this season of 1918-9. Dr. Fuller smiled in 1843 at the handkerchief 
masks. Yet, in 1918, masks of gauze have been ordered by boards 
of health all over the United States. 

The long roll of Logan county physicians who became known to 
all its borders and in many cases far beyond, presenting as bright a 
page of professional history as can be turned in Ohio, begins with the 
name of Mrs. Phoebe Sharp, whose intelligence and skill were freely 
at the service of the settlers of the Darby creek neighborhood for 
years before a regular physician ventured so far. Dr. John Elbert 
came to Middleburg vicinity in 1809, and was for several years the 
only physician of the county. He died after twenty years of arduous 
practice in the wilderness. Dr. Benjamin Stanton Brown was the 
next, coming to Logan county about the same time that his father 
settled in the Marmon valley, in 1818, and begining his local career 
in the capacity of a surveyor. He was a man of varied talents and 
broad mentality, the genial charm of his personality still remem- 
bered by those who knew him near the close of his life, when he 
had retired from the laborious life of pioneer physician, in which 
service he had been unexcelled. Dr. Brown married Rebecca Shaw 
(daughter of Henry Shaw), who outlived him, and gave to the city, 
in memory of his life and work, the lovely little park which bears 
his name. Dr. James Crew, who came to Zanesfield in 1821, was 
the next in order, practicing for forty-seven faithful years, his service 
ending only with his death in 1868. Dr. Abiel Hovey Lord, born in 
Windsor, Vermont, in 1802, came to Bellefontaine in 1823, the only 
practicing physicians nearer than Urbana, at the time, being Drs. 
Elbert and Crew. Dr. Lord's field of practice covered not only all of 
Logan county, but all of the counties touching it, including a great 
deal of work among the Indians, seven hundred and fifty of whom 
he vaccinated just before they were taken to the west in 1832. Dr. 
Lord married Letitia McCloud, daughter of Col. McCloud, in 1824. 
Their residence in Bellefontaine was a large house built of logs, and 
stood on the northwest corner of Main and Chillicothe streets. The 
building afterward becarne a place of mercantile business, and finally 


degenerated to the base purpose of a saloon and latterly a pool room, 
being finally removed in 1913, to make room for the erection of the 
beautiful Canby building, the pride of latter-day Bellefontaine. It 
was at that time the oldest known structure in the town, and remem- 
bering its former honorable estate, the logs were purchased, for 
preservation, by (Prof.) Thomas Hubbard, jr., who presented them 
to the city. They were, later, built into a log cabin in Rutan Park, 
northeast of the city, at the expense of the late Miss Mary Powell, 
granddaughter of William Powell, one of the founders of Belle- 

Mrs. Lord died in 1875, while Dr. Lord's active career ended in 
1882, after nearly sixty years in practice. Dr. Joseph Canby, who 
came from Virginia in 1825, was a graduate of Rush Medical col- 
lege, Philadelphia. He settled in DeGraff — or near where DeGra^ 
was afterward built — but his reputation was county-wide, not only 
as a physician, but as business man and influential citizen. Richard 
S. Canby, well-known lawyer and jurist, was his son. Dr. Canby 
died in 1847, having previously retired from practice to devote his 
energies to business pursuits. Drs. Good and Leedom, of Quincy, 
were his contemporaries, as were also Dr. Thomas of Logansville, 
Dr. Samuel A. Morton of Cherokee, and Dr. Robb of Zanesfield. Dr. 
S. W. Fuller, who came to West Liberty in 1838, and from there 
practiced the county over, removed his headquarters to Bellefontaine 
in or about 1852, retiring from practice there only a few years before 
his death in February, 1908, after nearly seventy years' professional 
life. With the exception of Dr. John Elbert, who died in 1836. Dr 
Fuller was the contemporary practitioner of all the physicians ever 
resident in Logan county, with the exception of the very youngest 
members of the present medical "round table." Dr. Thomas L. 
Wright, the son of Dr. Thomas Wright, who emigrated to America 
from Ireland in 1817, was himself a native of Portage county, Ohio. 
After completing his education at Miami university and Ohio Medi- 
cal college, he went to Kansas as government physician for the 
Wyandot Indians. He came to Bellefontaine in 1856, Miss Lucinda, 
daughter of Dr. and Mrs. Lord, becoming his wife not long after 
Dr. Wright was deeply read, and of broad and liberal mind, a fine 
theoretician, a lecturer and writer of essays and pamphlets on path- 
ological subjects, his most noted work being a treatise on Inebriety, 
which caused him to be rated a high authority on that subject. He 
was at all times generous with advice and counsel to younger doc- 
tors, sharing with them the richness of his reading. He died, 1893. 

Dr. David Watson, also a son of Irish parents, who emigrated 
to America early in the last century, was born in Adams county, in 
1819, and came with his parents to Logan county in 1823, locating 
in the Cherokee and Huntsville district. In the spring of 1839, when 
aged 20, he lost a leg by amputation after an accident incurred in log- 
rolling. Thus unfitted for the business of farming, he took up the 
study of medicine under the tutelage of Dr. B. S. Brown. His first 
anatomy lesson was recited to Dr. Brown in the latter's cornfield 
(which happened to be the same plot of ground now known as 
"Brown Park") the doctor stopping the plow to listen. Dr. Watson 
maintained himself, while studying, by teaching school. After his 


marriage to Miss Eliza Richardson of Shelby county, Dr. Watson 
practiced in Upper Sandusky and in Wyandot county, where theit 
five elder children were born, and where they were buried after 
their brief lives. They came to Bellefontaine in 1857, and at first 
lived in the house on East Columbus avenue, where their only surviv- 
ing child, Mrs. Maggie Ginn, now makes her home. Dr. Watson 
achieved signal success in his profession in which he was noted for 
his keen and well-balanced judgment, while his faculties, both as 
diagnostician and prognostician were remarkable. He was also a 
clever and skilful surgeon of the old school. His death occurred 
March 31, 1894. Wells Watson Ginn, the gifted reader, is a grand- 
son. Dr. W. D. Scarflf, born in Green county, Ohio, May, 1819, the 
son of Dr. John and Rachel (Curl) Scarff, received a collegiate educa- 
tion and graduated from Louisville Medical Institute in 1844, locat- 
ing in Bellefontaine soon after, making the journey hither from 
Green county on horseback. Dr. Scarff's coming gave the city of 
Bellefontaine three practicing physicians. He was associated with 
his brother, James Scarfif, in the drug business, but entered at once 
upon his practice, following his profession with ability and distinc- 
tion for fifty-six years, during which time he held several positions 
of professional honor and trust. He was also an able contributor 
to "The Lancet" (a medical journal), and to the "Examiner," his 
last manuscript being sent in at the beginning of his final illness, 
which ended in paralysis and death, November, 1901. He married, 
1851, Miss Lois Whitehead. 

Dr. Edwin Pratt, who began his career at Bloom Centre, in 1850, 
located in Bellefontaine, in 1865, where he was already well-known 
because of long prominence in public office. Dr. Pratt's talent as 
a physician is attested by the fact that it has descended to the second 
and third generations of his family, son and grandsons all being 
successful physicians. Drs. Clayson, Aaron Hartley and James 
Cooper were of the period now under consideration, but exact data 
are not obtainable concerning them, although all were prominent 
in the community. Dr. Clayson died in the early seventies, in the 
prime of life. Dr. Hartley spent a long period of years in Bellefon- 
taine, and left for Colorado at the age of nearly eighty, still hale and 
hearty. Dr. Cooper was a specialist in drugs, rather than a path- 
ologist, but his vast and comprehensive knowledge of the materia 
medica made him a valuable member of the medical fraternity. Early 
in the summer of 1872, Dr. J. M. Wilson located in Bellefontaine, 
coming from the Cleveland Hospital School of Homeopathy. Though 
belonging to a school which had then but scant popularity, locally. 
Dr. Wilson has won the respect and high regard of all the "regu- 
lars" of his day, and, at past seventy, is still hale, active and very 
busy. He became the husband of Miss Ella Emery at an early 
stage of his career, and is now the senior physician of Bellefontaine, 
having been born in Carroll county in 1844. Closely following Dr. 
Wilson came Dr. Perry D. Covington, Dr. William H. Cretcher 
and Dr. Rutter — the latter a native of Rushsylvania. Dr. Rutter, 
after a few years' practice, took up institutional work, and left Belle- 
fontaine for Gallipolis, and Newberry, and latterly Columbus. Dr. 
Cretcher, who was born and reared in Springhill, Champaign county, 


was a brilliant student, and a gifted surgeon, making an immediate 
success. He was stricken with death in the very zenith of his pro- 
fessional powers, and died in 1890. Dr. Covington, a captain in the 
Civil War at a very early age, was a nephew of Dr. Watson, by 
whom his choice of a profession was somewhat influenced. He was 
a native son of Logan county, his parents being Samuel and Ruth 
Watson Covington, whose farm lay south of Bellefontaine a short 
distance. Born in 1842, he graduated from Ohio Medical college in 
1868, and practiced about four years at Roundhead, during which 
period he was married to Miss Ellen McClain, and came to Bellefon- 
taine in 1872. Dr. Covington rose to the foremost position in the 
local practice and was regarded, after Dr. Fuller's retirement, as the 
dean of the profession here, until his death, which occurred in Sep- 
tember, 1915. Mrs. Covington is the author of an able pamphlet 
touching pathology. Dr. James Paulding Wallace, born Oxford, 
Ohio, a graduate of Monmouth college, Ohio Medical college and 
Bellevue hospital, located in Bellefontaine in 1877, and went into 
partnership with Dr. S. W. Fuller, who at that time believed himself 
about to retire from active practice. Dr. Wallace at once achieved 
a wide popularity, being of a genial and sunny nature, and full of 
kindly benevolence. Among the poor and lowly he was held in 
warmest affection, for his manifold benefactions. In 1886 he de- 
cided upon a change of climate, and went to CaHfornia, where he 
remained a short time, returning to Kentucky, where he unfor- 
tunately contracted a pulmonary illness which undermined his health. 
A third removal, to Greeley, Colorado, resulted in recovery, but 
after a few years of great success, professionally, he died in 1894, of 
pneumonia. Mrs. Wallace was Miss Laura Garvey, of Piqua, and 
ihe Wallace home in Bellefontaine was the old Noah McColloch 
residence on East Columbus avenue. Upon his departure for Cali- 
fornia, Dr. Wallace sold the house to Dr. R. W. Chalfant, who after- 
ward remodeled it into the Chalfant Block. Mrs. Wallace returned 
to Bellefontaine with her family, two daughters, Miss Margaret 
Wallace and Mrs. Paul O. Batch, and herself still residing here, 
while the three sons, Will G., James Fuller and Hallett Denman 
Wallace follow their professions in Canada, Texas and Colorado, 
respectively. Dr. Wallace was the son of a United Presbyterian 
minister, but during his residence here was an elder in the First 
Presbyterian church. 

Dr. John Saxton Deemy, born in Cumberland county, Pennsyl- 
vania, in 1866, passed his boyhood in Frenchtown, New Jersey, and 
was graduated from the Medico-Chirurgical College of Philadelphia 
in 1890, winning the appointment of chief interne in the hospital 
department of the same institution for one year. He then returned 
to Frenchtown, where he entered practice in company with his father, 
Dr. E. K. Deemy, remaining there until 1892-3, when he located in 
Bellefontaine, associating himself for several years with the late Dr. 
S. W. Fuller. In 1899 he was married to Miss Bessie Riddle, daugh- 
ter of Mrs. Margaret Riddle, a happy union to which four children 
were born. After the tragic death of Dr. Deemy's mother, in a run- 
away accident, the elder Dr. Deemy made his home in Bellefontaine 
until his death — an additional shock to the son — followed in 1911. 


A third severe shock and bereavement came to Dr. and Mrs. Deemy 
one year later in the drowning of their little daughter, Margaret, 
April, 1912. Of great personal magnetism, Dr. Deemy attracted a 
large and devoted clientele, to which his cheery disposition and hu- 
man sympathy increasingly endeared him, while his proficiency as 
a physician and surgeon won him enviable distinction in the pro- 
fession. During the twenty or more years of his residence in Belle- 
fontaine he served the city as health officer for a long term, and at 
the time of his death he was the surgeon for the Big Four, Ohio 
Electric and the T. & O. C. railroads, succeeding Dr. J. H. Wilson, 
who resigned. Dr. Deemy was a leader in the revival of the Logan 
County Medical Society, a member of the State Medical Society and 
the American Medical Association. In his own practice he had but 
one aim — the relief of human suffering. His death was caused by 
pneumonia — a short but violent illness of three days — on February 
13, 1915. 

Dr. Robert G. Reed, born and raised at Huntsville, Ohio, suc- 
cessfully practiced at Bellefontaine for about ten years, when he 
removed to Cincinnati, here he is now practicing as an eye specialist. 

Of the Bellefontaine physicians now included in the Logan 
County Association, as nearly complete a list as possible is here 
given : Dr. Carrie Richeson, who was born and reared in this city ; 
Dr. Charles W. Heffner (of Lewistown), 1881 ; Dr. L. C. Pratt (son 
of Dr. Edwin Pratt), now about thirty-five years in local practice; 
Dr. W. W. Hamer (of Lewistown), 1885; Dr. W. Gail Stinchcomb 
(who came to Bellefontaine at the age of ten, in 1884), and after 
graduation at Bellevue Hospital in 1897, began practice here; 
Dr. J. P. Harbert (from Belle Center), about 1898; Dr. E. R. Henn- 
ing (of West Liberty) ; Dr. J. W. Young, Dr. W. C. Pay (city physi- 
cian, 1918), 1909; Dr. F. R. Makemson (DeGraff and Lewistown), 
1917; Dr. H. A. Skidmore (West Mansfield), 1917. "In Service": 
Dr. Guy L. Swan, Dr. A. J. McCracken, Dr. Robert H. Butler, Dr. 
F. B. Kaylor, Dr. Clyde K. Startzman, Dr. W. Gail Stinchcomb, Dr. 
O. W. Loffer, Dr. W. H. Carey, Drs. Robert, Lester and Malcolm 
Pratt. The dentists of today are : Dr. Frank R. Griffin, son of Dr. 
A. E. Griffin, one of the principal earlier dentists of Bellefontaine, 
and Drs. C. N. Miles, C. W. Schroeder, J. E. Thatcher, Fred S. Wood, 
J. C. Longfellow, and Edw. Thompson. Drs. F. G. Burnett and 
Mac. J. Reid represent the Osteopathic cult. 

Another well-known physician is Dr. J. W. Arbegast, born in 
Logan county. May 21, 1857, son of Joel and Caroline (Antrim) 
Arbegast, and grandson of Daniel Antrim, the first white boy born 
in the county. Dr. Arbegast began the study of medicine at the age 
of 18, but the death of his father interrupted his career, and it was 
not until the nineties that he was able to resume his studies. He 
graduated from Cincinnati Eclectic Medical Institute in 1894, and 
at once began to practice at West Mansfield, where he resided until 
1912, when he removed to Bellefontaine, and has since been estab- 
lished here in a successful practice. Mrs. Arbegast, who was Miss 
Susan Leymaster, has been a comrade and helper in the professional 
career of her husband. 

Hospitals in Bellefontaine have had short history, although 


several have been established. That of Dr. W. W. Hamer served for 
a time, but financial difficulties usually beset the unendowed hospital, 
and it closed about ten years ago, after being several years in opera- 
tion. Dr. Hamer has lately, in company with Dr. Henning, em- 
barked upon an exclusively surgical practice. Miss Wilhelmina 
Aikin, a good business woman, as well as a professional nurse, 
located in Bellefontaine in August, 1912, opening a private hospital 
on East Sandusky avenue, where for six years she filled a decided 
need of the community. Miss Aikin, who was a native of North- 
wood, Logan county, was trained in the Seton (Presbyterian) hos- 
pital in Cincinnati, and in the Queen City Hospital there, where she 
graduated, and afterward took the position of matron in Dr. Vale's 
hospital in the same city. A few years of private nursing ensued, 
and she thus brought to her work in Bellefontaine not only ten years 
of practical experience, but also great native ability and personal 
charm. Held in highest esteem by the local medical profession. Miss 
Aikin had been chosen directress of the new Mary Rutan hospital, 
just completed, in the north part of the city, when her most utimely 
death occurred, during the influenza epidemic of 1918. Her ap- 
pointment was a deserved tribute to her worth, and her loss is 
keenly felt by the city. The trustees of the hospital have elected 
Miss Hazel Webster, of Kenton, Hardin county, to fill Miss Aikin's 
place as directress. The Mary Rutan hospital was made possible 
by the bequest of a fund from Mrs. Rebecca Williams, in honor of 
her mother, Mary Rutan. The hospital is "the last word" in mod- 
ernity; fireproof and accommodates at present 30 beds, including 
the two wards. Ample space is provided in the grounds, and the 
plan is so arranged that wings may be added to the structure in the 

The Churches of Bellefontaine 

That the early establishment of religious organizations has had 
much to do with the character of the population of today cannot be 
overlooked. The pioneers who entered the trackless wilds of Logan 
county more than a century ago were almost without exception 
of recognized religious convictions and their efforts to plant the 
banner of Christ solidly in the new soil has had an enduring success. 
Laying aside all references to creeds and sects, there has been a 
co-operative movement for all good things by all good people from 
the start, and while there are changes, and the Quakers and the 
Covenanters and the various subdivisions of other denominations 
have fused into a smaller list of creeds than once prevailed, it is, 
perhaps, because all have become "Friends" in the best and finest 
sense of the word, while the line between Catholic and Protestant 
is less clearly defined than it used to be, in the diffused light of 
Christian brotherhood. After the soul-searching experiences in 
united effort of all schools of faith, exampled in the welfare activities 
of the recent world war, the members of one body see clearly the 
essential union of them all. That the work of that body will con- 
tinue to be done by its members as in the past, is evidenced by the 
vigorous condition of the various church organizations, and the 


eagerness with which each is pursuing its labors for the cause of 

The Methodist Episcopal church was the earliest to organize 
. a class in the city, the "meetings" held from cabin to cabin crystal- 
lizing at last into an organized body about 1819, the exercises thereof 
being conducted by Rev. John Strange, at the house of Samuel 
Carter. The first chapel was erected in the new county seat in 1823, 
and stood on West Chillicothe street, at a point between the present 
post office building and the old Kennedy residence. Rev. John 
Strange was installed as first pastor. A trifling difference separated 
the congregation for a period, but in 1858 this was amicably adjusted, 
and there has ever since remained one strong church body. Its 
handsome church edifice on North Main street was erected in 1889. 
Dr. J. L. Albritton was pastor when the new (present) church was 
built. Dr. Isaac Newton was pastor when it was decided to build, 
February 2, 1886. The building committee was appointed January 
3, 1887 and consisted of John B. Williams, Robert Colton, J. M. 
Williamson, Alfred Butler and William Barton. Rev. Whitlock 
was pastor of this congregation for five years, during the boyhood 
of the now famous author and diplomat. Brand Whitlock, his son. 
Rev. F. M. Swinehai-t is the pastor at this date (1919). 

The First Presbyterian church was organized in Bellefontaine 
in 1828, under the ministry of Rev. Joseph Stevenson, who came 
to the town in 1825 with this end in view. The Presbyterian church 
at Cherokee (now Huntsville) had been organized September, 1824, 
by Rev. James Robinson, and called the "Church of Logan." From 
this germ the church at Bellefontaine took motive, the services of 
Rev. Stevenson being divided between Cherokee, Bellefontaine, 
Stony Creek (Springhill, in Champaign county), and West Liberty, 
until 1828, when the church at Bellefontaine became the larger and 
was granted independence. Rev. R. H. Holliday came in 1840 to 
assist Rev. Stevenson in his several charges, the latter retiring 
about 1844. The church membership in 1835 was ninety-one. Rev. 
George A. Gregg followed Rev. Stevenson in 1845, and remained 
here nine years, dying in February, 1854, of smallpox. Rev. Raf- 
fensperger came in 1854, and was the first pastor who gave his whole 
time to this church. He remained for five years, re-uniting the con- 
gregation and adding greatly to its membership. Rev. George P. 
Bergen came after him, staying until 1863, during a period of great 
excitement and political dissension, through which the church made 
steady progress. In 1863 commenced the long and happy pastorate 
of Rev. George L. Kalb, D.D., his installation taking place in 1864. 
For thirty-five years Dr. Kalb christened, received into member- 
ship, married and buried the individuals of the flock, resigning in 1898 
on account of his advanced years. He was made pastor emeritus 
and continued in the veneration of his own people and the com- 
munity until his death, in September, 1912. Rev. George E. Davies, 
of Fort Wayne, Indiana, was called to the pulpit of Dr. Kalb, and 
installed as pastor in 1899, resigning after eleven years' service to 
accept a call from St. Paul, Minnesota. Dr. William L. Barrett 
was installed pastor January 1, 1911. The membership at that time 
had grown to about six hundred, and has in the eight years since 


increased to nine hundred. The congregation is noted for including 
in its membersip an unusual number of business and professional 
men. At present (1918) over half of the Logan county bar are 
members of this church. A few of the prominent members along 
the years have been : Joshua Robb, Robert Patterson, Edv^ard 
Patterson, Ezra Bennett, Gen. Robert P. Kennedy, S. W. Fuller, 
William McColloch, John A. Mcllvaine and Judge William H. West. 
The present session consists of : John Q. A. Campbell, George A. 
Henry, G. Harry Aikin, Major E. K. Campbell, Dr. R. W. Chalfant, 
William D. Paris, Dr. John P. Harbert, Charles B. Harner, Reuben 
B. Keller, Max Leonard, Judge J. Duncan McLaughlin, Fred C. 
Spittle, John E. West, George W. Worrell and Judge John C. Hover, 
who is clerk of the session. Dr. Barrett is among the strongest 
pulpit orators Bellefontaine has had within the memory of present 
citizens. The services of the church previous to 1829 were held 
in the first court house (afterward a tavern), and prayer meetings 
were held in Robert Patterson's home, which stood just north of it. 
The first church edifice was built of brick, forty-three feet square, 
and stood on North Main street. This building became by purchase 
the property of the Christian church a good many years later, and 
about 1880 passed into the hands of the Reformed or Covenanters' 
church. A new church was erected where the present church now 
stands, which during the pastorate of Rev. Davies was completely 
rebuilt into the modern and spacious edifice now seen. 

The English Lutheran church was first organized in 1840, at 
the home of John Horn, by Rev. J. H. Hoffman, and had a strug- 
gling existence for several years, being without a pastor from 1845 
to 1850. Rev. J. H. Brickley was then sent to reorganize, and at the 
old court house, in the spring of 1851, a congregation of seventeen 
members was established which immediately set about building a 
church, the cornerstone of which was laid in July, 1851. The build- 
ing was a small brick chapel situated at the corner of Detroit and 
Sandusky streets. The first pastor was a victim of cholera during 
the completion of the church, and the first service held in the build- 
ing was his funeral. Dr. J. W. Goodlin succeeded to the pastorate 
and was followed by Dr. Kuhns, Dr. Breckenridge, Rev. Shearer 
and Dr. W. H. Singley, who came in the summer of 1876 and infused 
new life into the congregation, building at the old site a large new 
church, which was once remodeled and a pipe organ installed before 
he left it in 1892. Since then the church has had uninterrupted 
progress under the successive pastorates of Revs. W. E. Hull, S. S. 
Adams, S. E. Greenawalt, and the present pastor. Rev. C. E. Rice, 
who entered upon his work in 1908, and under whom the church has 
been rebuilt at a cost of $24,000, now presenting a wholly modern 
and harmonious exterior, while the interior is not only commodious, 
but ecclesiastically correct. 

St. Patrick's Catholic church was organized in Bellefontaine 
in 1853 by Father Grogan, and a church was built the same year. 
However, services had been held in homes for many years before 
that date, and the little Piatt chapel at West Liberty had made a 
Mecca for early Catholics, still previous. The original church, built 
on East Patterson street, stood through several pastorates, Fathers 


Thomas Sheahan, J. F. McSweeney, John Coveney (who was assas- 
sinated by a lunatic) and Father Young preceding Father Bourion, 
a clergyman of unusual talents and culture who improved and 
enlarged the church and also built the large parochial school which 
stands immediately west of it. Father Bourion was followed in 1889 
by Father William Conway, and he by Father Doherty in 1894. 
In 1897 the church was destroyed by a fire of unknown origin, but 
was immediately rebuilt upon a somewhat larger scale, being dedi- 
cated by Archbishop Elder in 1898, at which time Father C. J. Con- 
way was the priest in charge. Father Conway has been followed 
by Fathers Benning, Singleton and Sourd, and since August 1, 1916, 
by Father Wni. C. Welch, who has made a host of friends in the two 
years of his service, both in his parish and in general society, taking 
a prominent part in the war activities, Red Cross and kindred work. 
A handsome new rectory, completed in the summer of 1918, has 
replaced the old house east of the church, the site being ideal for 
a clerical residence. 

The Baptists organized in 1845, and while gathering strength 
and numbers for church building, held their meetings at the houses 
of members. In 1852 ground was broken for the original church 
building on the same corner (East Columbus and Mad River 
streets) where the present church stands. Rev. Roney was the 
pastor, and at least one member, Mrs. Mary Kerr, still remembers 
coming to see the ceremony, sixty-six years ago. Rev. A. J. Wyant 
was one of the earliest and best remembered pastors, and, follow- 
ing him, a somewhat fragmentary account indicates that Rev. James 
French and Rev. W. H. Stringer were among the ministers who 
occupied the pulpit. The church edifice has been remodeled twice, 
being so completely rebuilt in 1907, under the pastorate of Rev. 
Jasper H. Winans, that little but the old bricks form a part of the 
Baptist church of today. The re-dedication took place in 1908. 
Four years ago Rev. F. F. Fenner succeeded Rev. Winans. and the 
congregation is in a flourishing condition. It will celebrate its 
seventy-fifth anniversary in 1920. 

"The First Christian Church," or, as it is called today, the 
Church of Christ, was originally organized with fourteen members, 
at a meeting held in the basement of the Baptist church, at a date 
not set down in the chronicles. From this lowly beginning the 
society emerged in 1857 to build a "hall" on East Columbus avenue, 
which they used as a church until about 1870, when they sold it 
for business purposes and purchased the old chapel of the Presbyte- 
rians on North Main street, paying for it the sum of sixteen hundred 
dollars. This was later sold to the Reformed church congregation. 
Revs. A. F. Abbott, T. A. Brandon, William Lawrence and several 
other pastors ministered to the congregation until May, 1878, when 
the church was closed for want of a pastor. Removals and deaths 
had depleted the membership from sixty to twenty, yet it continued 
to hold together as an organization through various ups and downs 
— chiefly downs — until 1896, when a movement to build a new 
church resulted in a substantial rally under Rev. D. D. Burt. The 
new edifice was erected on the corner of East Sandusky avenue 
and Park Place, at a cost of sixteen thousand dollars. Twelve 


years later it was remodeled at a cost of four thousand more. On 
the fifteenth of January, 1915, the church was totally destroyed by 
fire. Undaunted, the cong-regation at once took steps to rebuild, 
and extra ground was purchased on the west, to build larger. 
Funds were quickly raised, and the contract was let, in April, fol- 
lowing the fire. The cornerstone of the new temple was laid August 
22, 1915, and the building completed and dedicated early in 1916. 
December 31, 1915, the membership numbered eleven hundred per- 
sons, an increase of six hundred in the preceding fourteen months. 
The beautiful new temple, of pale buff brick and white sandstone, 
stands west of Brown park, and is a fine example of classic archi- 
tecture. All its inner working forces are in a high state of organi- 
zation, and full of ardor. Following Rev. Burt, the pastors have 
been, in order, Revs. A. S. Morrison, 1898, E. S. Muckley, 1900, 
W. T. Groom, 1903, Roy L. Brown, 1907, C. C. Wilson, 1912, U. E. 
Hootman, 1913, and Rev. Traverce Harrison, who came in 1915, 
and will stay, it is hoped, many years. 

From the union of the drifting elements of the Associate and 
Associate Reformed societies in Bellefontaine and vicinity, that 
had existed since the early thirties, the United Presbyterian church 
was formed briefly subsequent to 1858, the Rev. Joseph Hatton, of 
the Associate Reformed church remaining in charge of the new 
organization until April, 1859, after which it was without a regular 
pastor until 1862. From 1862 until 1865 Rev. W. H. Jeffers was 
in charge, being followed by Rev. John Williamson, D.D., who led 
the congregation through over twenty years of vigorous growth. 
The original church edifice was built on an elevated site on North 
Detroit street and provided an auditorium of ample size, which 
was improved from time to time and served the congregation until 
the eighties, when, during the pastorate of Dr. Wilhamson, the 
new church at the corner of East Sandusky avenue and Mad River 
street, was built. The old church may still be seen on Detroit street, 
surrounded by many evidences of the mutations of time. It has 
long been used for factory purposes. The "New" church, now over 
thirty years old, was built upon so modern a principle that it bears 
rigid comparison with those of twentieth century architecture. Dur- 
ing Dr. Williamson's pastorate he formed "The Young People's 
Prayer-Meeting," which was the earliest organized young people's 
body connected with the Presbyterian church in the United States, 
antedating the Christian Endeavor by some years. Members of 
this society are still living, among them some of Bellefontaine's 
oldest citizens. After Dr. Williamson's retirement, four pastors, 
J. W. Allen, D.D., J. D. Simpson, D.D., Rev. John S. Dague, and 
Rev. W. T. Mabon successively filled the pulpit until 1918. Rev. 
G. L. Brown has accepted a call to this congregation and will occupy 
the pastorate beginning January 1, 1919. 

The first parish of the Episcopal church organized in Belle- 
fontaine, 1856, had an existence of only two years. A second attempt 
to organize an Episcopal parish was made in 1859, when Rev. Robert 
Paul, an Episcopal clergyman born in Ireland and settled in Phila- 
delphia, occasionally preached in the old courthouse. About this 
time, there being no church, a temporary altar was set up in the 


Dunham home on east Chillicothe avenue, where little Emma Dun- 
ham and Annie Blaney were baptized by Rev. Paul. December 
26, 1860, "Grace Church" was organized at a meeting in Dr. Gilson's 
office, the old Methodist chapel on west Chillicothe was purchased, 
and for a few years the little parish struggled along, but failed on 
account of its too small membership. In 1874, at the invitation 
of Mrs. N. E. Patterson, Rev. Julian held a service in the firemen's 
hall, over the engine house, and for some time thereafter services 
were held at this place, conducted by different clergymen. A guild 
was formed, with E. Douglas, A. S. Knapp, George Foote and W. A. 
Arnold as officers, and Rev. A. B. Nichols was called to the rec- 
torate the same year. His salary was limited to five dollars and 
expenses for each visitation. The records are somewhat misty and 
incomplete, but the services were held in the firemen's hall until a 
lot was purchased by the committee (Mrs. William H. West, J. G. 
Campbell and James McKinney) on East Chillicothe avenue, and 
a frame chapel erected, which was consecrated January, 1879, by 
Bishop Bedell. With some fluctuations of fortune through which 
the parish maintained an existence, kept alive by a latent germ 
of loyalty and faith, the year 1893 was reached, bringing to the 
rectorate for ten succeeding years the Rev. J. W. Thompson. In 
1903 he retired, and Rev. Thomas G. C. McCalla followed him. The 
roof of the old chapel had by this time been pronounced unsafe, and 
the building was sold to Frank I. Gray and converted to mercantile 
uses, while a new church site was purchased on the corner of East 
Sandusky and Park streets. The cornerstone of the new church was 
laid July 23, 1917, by Bishop Leonard, and the name of the parish 
then changed from Trinity to Holy Trinity. The first service in the 
new church was held in July, 1908. The succeeding rectors of the 
parish, after the retirement of Rev. McCalla in 1909, have been Rev, 
S. S. Powell, October, 1909, to October, 1911; Rev. John Stuart 
Banks, February, 1912, to March, 1915; Rev. John Williamson, 
March, 1915, to May, 1918; Rev. William Seitz, came to the Belle- 
fontaine parish in June, 1918. The present vestry is : John E. 
Miller, senior warden; Claude Southard, junior warden; Charles 
Lentz, clerk ; William Wissler, treasurer ; and Harry Loth. The 
new church is of rough gray stone with red tiled roof, and the archi- 
tecture is true to churchly traditions, very simple, yet modern 
withal. Instead of a tower, an arch, in the old mission mode, seems 
to invite the hanging of a bell. 

The Reformed Presbyterian or Covenanters' church in Belle- 
fontaine was organized about the later seventies and the Rev. Finley 
M. Foster was installed its first pastor, in the little brick church 
which was the original home of the Presbyterians, and which the 
Church of Christ had been using for some years. The congregation 
is not large, but numbers some of Bellefontaine's staunchest citi- 
zens. Rev. Foster retired from the pastorate in August, 1887, after 
which no incumbent was of long residence for a number of years. 
In the early part of August, 19(X), Rev. J. M. Paris accepted a call 
to this charge, taking rank at once as one of the strongest members 
of the Ministerial Association in Bellefontaine. He died in the 
autumn of 1918, respected and esteemed by all who knew him. His 


place has not as yet been filled, and this church is without a pastor. 

The Church of the Brethren was erected as a mission in 1907, 
and became a regularly organized congregation in 1909. Their 
building, on South Detroit street, is a neat chapel of cement con- 
struction. Rev. Abraham Horst and Rev. Josiah Weaver occupied 
the charge for the first few years, but for more than half the time 
since its organization the church has been without a regular pastor, 
and the present minister. Rev. William Tinkle, who came to the 
charge in August, 1918, has had but a short time in which to put 
new vigor into his little flock. The membership is now fifty, and 
is on the increase, while the general outlook is encouraging. The 
A. M. E. church on South Main street, is a neat structure, well 
attended by its people. Rev. W. P. Myers is its pastor. At the 
Second Baptist church (colored) Rev. J. M. Green is pastor. The 
regular pastor of the Wesleyan Methodist church is Rev. E. W. 
Benton, and the church stands on West Sandusky street. 

Fraternal, patriotic, civic and philanthropic organizations in 
Bellefontaine are in equal alignment with such movements in the 
average city, with a few points of special interest to mark some of 
them. The secret orders. Knights Templars, Odd Fellows, Knights 
of Pythias, and the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, are all 
of old standing, doing the work usually expected of these societies, 
and aid perhaps to an unusual extent in the efforts of other charities. 
The orders of Sons of Temperance and Good Templars were also 
organized in the earlier days of the struggle against the liquor evil, 
dating as far back as the forties, and giving place to the more modern 
movements in that direction which came into prominence after the 
Civil War. 

The first of all the philanthropic bodies to organize was the 
Women's Christian Temperance Union, formed originally by the 
association of about five women who had taken leading parts in the 
great woman's crusade in 1873-4. Among the number were Mrs. 
J. R. Smith and Mrs. Thomas W. Riddle. The date of organization 
is not positive, but the later seventies doubtless saw the initial steps 
of the movement, for the state convention of the Union was held in 
Bellefontaine in 1883. The work gathered force, and membership 
increased for a number of years, but as other societies began to form, 
interest became divided, and four or five years ago only twenty- 
eight members might have been counted. Since the election of Mrs. 
Mary B. Yoder to the presidency, four years ago, there has been a 
revival of interest, and the Bellefontaine branch now numbers two 
hundred members, while in the county at large there are one hundred 
and ninety more. The Bellefontaine contingent contributed one 
hundred dollars to the "dry" campaign fund last year, the county 
members adding seventy-one dollars. In addition to this the local 
W. C. T. U. has adopted a French war orphan, money has been sent 
to the "economy kitchens" and to the W. C. T. U. ambulance in 
France. Mrs. Yoder, the president, is also state lecturer and or- 
ganizer in Ohio. The vice president is Mrs. Charles Gregory ; treas- 
urer, Mrs. W. H. Bushong; secretary, Mrs. W. S. Hamilton. The 
county president is Mrs. W. S. Jones of Bellefontaine. 

In every struggle at arms since the war of 1812. Logan county 


has given of its sons to the defense of the nation without stint. There 
went from this commonwealth, in the war for the Union, more than 
two thousand soldiers, out of its then scant population of 20,342. 
The first Logan county soldier to fall in that struggle was Eugene 
Reynolds, and in his honor the Grand Army Post No. 441 was named, 
upon its establishment in May, 1884. There were then but thirty- 
four charter members, of whom but six are now living. The mem- 
bership grew until at its highest point it reached three hundred and 
sixty, but each year subsequent to that has seen the number de- 
crease, until now there are but thirty-four members left. Of the 
more than thirty who rode in last year's parade, "taps" have been 
sounded for four. 

The Women's Relief Corps organized in Bellefontaine in Sep- 
tember, 1886, charter 156, with ten members, Mrs. Mary Wilkinson, 
president. The chaplain, Catherine Humphreys, and the guard. Mat- 
tie W. Roebuck, are all that are left of this number. This organiza- 
tion has numbered and still numbers some of Bellefontaine's ablest 
women, who are carrying along the work that is left them with the 
ardent faith of old. In 1901 the State Encampment was won for 
Bellefontaine by the famous impromptu speech of Mrs. J. Q. A. 
Campbell, who pledged at the Findlay Encampment "a feather pil- 
low for every old soldier's head" in the name of the women of Logan 
county. And the pledge was kept. Mrs. Campbell is now the 
treasurer of the corps ; Mrs. Samuel Cooper, the president, and Mrs. 
A. N. Jenkinson, the secretary. The W. R. C. provide the flag for 
the "High Point" flagpole, on the C. D. Campbell farm. 

"Will Riddle" Camp, No. 23, Sons of Veterans, was chartered 
in January, 1898, with twenty-three members. A "Woman's Aux- 
iliary" to the camp was also organized a few years later under 
charter 79, dated April 27, 1901. 

An organization usually regarded as wholly religious, the Or- 
der of the King's Daughters and Sons was started in Bellefontaine 
about thirty years ago, in 1889 or early in 1890, "for spiritual cul- 
ture" and for "silent service," the number being at first limited to ten 
members. The first circle of ten was named the "Alpha" and the 
charter members were Bertha Powell (Stuckenberg), Mrs. George 
Emerson (Coulter), Mrs. Henry Whitworth, Georgia Coulter, Mrs. 
John E. West, Annie Price, Anna Colton, Emma Byers (deceased), 
Mrs. Clara G. West (deceased), and Mrs. Anson Carter. This was 
the first purely charitable work organized here which had no limita- 
tions, except the need of the object. This society so exactly filled a 
long felt want that the circle was soon enlarged to twenty members, 
and as time has passed three additional circles of equal magnitude 
have been formed, the St. Cecilias in 1899, the Dorcas circle in 1908, 
and the Agape, early in 1913. To avoid over-lapping of the charities 
of the circles, who have grown into the place usually occupied by 
the Associated Charities of other cities, a City Union was organized 
of all existing circles, to act as a clearing house and to carry on the 
movement for a visiting nurse more effectively. The order had al- 
ready made the care of the needy sick one of its chief objects, and 
had borne the expenses of many individual cases at homes and at 
hospitals. In 1912 the Red Cross Christmas seals were first sold 


in Bellefontaine with this end in view. Through successive sales, 
aided by systematic contributions from the fraternal orders, and from 
the Presbyterian and other church brotherhoods, and the co-opera- 
tion of the Metropolitan Life Insurance Agency, and the liberality 
of private individuals, the public health nurse has now become an 
established institution in Bellefontaine, Miss Josephine Cunningham, 
who resigned after the completion of one successful year, having 
been at once replaced by her sister. Miss Amy Cunningham. Miss 
Steckel, who preceded them in a six-months' service, was called 
to Red Cross war service. St. Cecilia circle inaugurated a sewing 
class, at one of the public schools, which led to the adoption of 
domestic science training in the schools. In spite of the motive of 
"silent service" the work of the King's Daughters has grown to 
such proportions that a certain degree of publicity now necessarily 
obtains. Mrs. Margaret Riddle is the senior member of the order, 
and as leader of Alpha Circle has been held in high reverence for 
a long term of years. 

The Bellefontaine chapter of the Daughters of the American 
Revolution, organized June 15, 1910, with eighteen charter mem- 
bers. The first regent was Miss Mary Powell, and vice regent, 
Mrs. Rebecca Williams; treasurer, Mrs. Gorton Scarff, all since 
deceased; secretary. Miss Dade Kennedy; registrar, Blanche Hamil- 
ton; historian, Nellie Huston; directors, Mesdames Ellis, Jones 
and West. The local work done by the organization is in line with 
the ethics of the order, and briefly stated, has been the marking of 
Hull's trace by a bronze tablet set in a natural boulder at the old 
McPherson home site. They have supported a French orphan 
during two years of the war, and are prepared to assist in the restor- 
ation of the ruined village of Tilloley, in France. There is also a 
project, which has been delayed by the war work, to erect a 
memorial entrance to Rutan park, in honor of Mrs. Rebecca Wil- 
liams. Mrs. Martha McPherson Miller, of Lewistown, who died 
December, 1918, was a member of this chapter, the only real 
"daughter" left in the country. The membership, January, 1919, num- 
bers forty-six, and the officers of today are: Mrs. J. W. Young, 
regent; Mrs. Charles D. Campbell, vice regent; Mrs. R. M. Wissler, 
secretary; Helen Patterson, treasurer; Mabel Walker, registrar; 
Mrs. D. B. Leonard, historian; directors, Mesdames Harriet Jones, 
J. J. Anderson and J. S. Deemy. 

A city federation of women's clubs was formed in the winter of 
1913-14, the idea originating, locally, with Mrs. Lewis Pettit, of the 
Tourist Club, who became the first federation president. The con- 
stitution, adopted February 21, 1914, states the purpose of the fed- 
eration to be the promotion of public welfare, and the work of the 
organization has been to assist financially in civic welfare move- 
ments, having taken for a special motive, the establishment of play- 
grounds for the growing boys and girls of Bellefontaine. The play- 
grounds have been operated, at the South and West schools. Eleven 
clubs are united in the federation as follows: Tourist, Sunnebah, 
Athenian, Woman's Franchise League, Woman's Literary Club, 
Woman's Club, Swastika, Economics, Onaway, Edelweiss and Art 
Clubs, all study organizations. The officers are: President, Mrs. 


W. M. Stamats; first vice president, Mrs. C. F. O'Donnell; second 
vice president, Mrs. E. M. Hamilton; secretary, Miss Etta McCor- 
mick; treasurer, Mrs. Margaret Barton. 

The Woman's Franchise League was organized in Bellefon- 
taine in January, 1912, following a preliminary meeting held at 
the home of Mrs. Martha Fehl and Miss R. Eva Byers at which, by 
co-operation with the W. C. T. U., Mrs. Florence D. Richard ad- 
dressed the women, and a permanent organization was effected, 
with Miss Florine Folsom as president, the name "Woman's Fran- 
chise League" being chosen at a later meeting. The Constitutional 
Convention being in session in Columbus at the time, the support- 
ers of equal suffrage had taken, new hope of success for a suffrage 
amendment, and a canvas of the Bellefontaine tax duplicate having 
disclosed eight hundred and fifteen women taxpayers in the city, 
the local Franchise League was given a strong point of attack for 
their initial campaign. Though supported by the opinions of two 
great presidents — Thomas Jefferson, who said, "A government is 
not complete that withholds from its women what it gives to its 
most benighted men," and Abraham Lincoln, who said, "I go for 
all sharing the privileges of the government who assist in bearing 
its burdens — by no means excluding women," the franchise move- 
ment was by no means a popuar one in the start. But in the seven 
years just closing (1919) great headway has been gained, and pub- 
lic support is still growing apace. The daily papers have been 
generous in space and comment, public speakers of note have been 
heard at the Chautauqua, at the county fairs and at meetings held 
in public places as well as in private homes, and in schools. Among 
a long list of famous women workers along this line, the visit of 
Rosalie Jones and Elizabeth Freeman of New York City, in the 
little yellow wagon, is certain to be remembered. 

The passage of the twenty-third amendment became at once 
the objective of the Leagues' efforts in 1912, and succeeding in the 
convention at Columbus, the local suffrage women braved the 
criticism of the public by working at the polls at the September 
election, passing out the "vote yes" cards. The amendment was 
lost, but in 1914 an amendment having again been petitioned for by 
the State Suffrage Association, the local Franchise League secured 
the signatures of fifteen hundred and forty voters of Logan county 
for its passage. Again the amendment was lost, but with a decided 
gain over the vote of 1912. The result was simply harder work, 
and the inauguration of a campaign of public education, by means 
of public lectures, the newspapers, distribution by mail and per- 
sonally, of suffrage literature, and by a study of civil government 
and parliamentary law on their own part, in classes. Efforts have 
not been confined solely to suffrage questions, however, but lec- 
tures have been given and classes conducted, under their auspices, 
in the "cold-pack" canning processes, the preservation of wild bird 
life, and kindred subjects, while a large amount of literature from 
the state board of health has been distributed on the prevention of 
tuberculosis and "How to Save the Babies." 

The Franchise League has never been connected, in any way, 
with the old "Congressional Union," nor with the "Woman's 


Political Party" of militant notoriety. It is a member of the City 
Federation of Women's Clubs, and works only along the most 
enlightened lines. It has been supported by the best brains and 
wisest women of Bellefontaine, among whom foremost mention 
should be made of Mrs. Mary Phillips Koogle, who is of the same 
lineage as the great reformer, Wendell Phillips, who long ago lifted 
his voice for equal suffrage ; while the active workers and influen- 
tial members include such names as Mesdames Martha Byers 
Fehl, Celia A. Inskeep, Margaret Stillwell, Strayer Pool, Estelle H. 
Campbell, Rosa Hall, Henry Switzer, Mary Henry, Oscar Mc- 
Laughlin, Jessie Gibson, C. C. Yule, Juliette McLaughlin, Alice 
Rankin, Maggie Watson Ginn and Mary Jeffries and Misses Dr. 
Carrie Richeson, Mary Craig, Mary A. Cheever, May McRey- 
nolds, Alice Hamilton, Sarah A. Knight, R. Eva Byers, Florine Fol- 
som, Mary McElree, Sarah Henry, Ida May Moore and Cloris 

The Railroad Young Men's Christian Association of Bellefon- 
taine was organized in 1900, and the headquarters, erected in the 
vicinity of the Big Four shops, was opened and dedicated January 
10, 1901, for the benefit of railroad men resident and running be- 
tween Cleveland and Indianapolis. Mr. Edward Hamilton, inter- 
national secretary of R. R. Y. M. C. A.'s had supervision of the con- 
struction and planning of the institution, his wide experience en- 
abling him to provide the home-like atmosphere desirable. The 
first board of managers were : Chairman, A. N. Jenkinson ; Dr. 
J. H. Wilson, J. Belser, Will Spittle and Henry Myers, the first 
secretary being Mr. Pawlings, who was followed by Mr. Imish, 
Mr. Weaver and J. H. Underkircher, the present secretary, replac- 
ing the latter in 1909. The efficiency of the institution has been 
greatly enlarged since the administration of Mr. Underkircher, 
although the work has grown steadily from the start. In addition 
to the original hotel from one to four dwelling houses have been 
operated as rooming places, and in November, 1914, the downtown 
hotel headquarters was opened, using the old Bellefontaine Hotel 
on West Columbus avenue for the purpose. A gymnasium is ac- 
commodated here, and the hotel provides more and better rooms 
than were available in the dwellings previously rented. The asso- 
ciation has done a great work in the city, and has been felt in all 
the war work and other public movements undertaken. In 1918 
they provided and erected a fine steel flag pole to mark the highest 
point of land in Logan county, and the state of Ohio, the spot being 
located authentically on the C. D. Campbell farm, a few miles east 
of the city, on the Jerusalem pike. The flag which flew from it was 
provided by the W. R. C. of Reynolds Post. The membership of 
the Y. M. C. A. has reached eight hundred. The present board of 
directors is A. N. Jenkinson, Dr. J. H. Wilson, A. Jay Miller, Fred 
C. Spittle, Edward G. Costin, W. D. Paul, J. H. Underkircher. The 
prospects are now bright for the building of a new and modern 
home for the association in the near future. 

The Bellefontaine council of the Knights of Columbus began 
its life as part of the Sidney, Ohio, council from 1906 until April 1, 
1915, when they formed an independent council with fifty charter 


members, a number which has grown until now (1919) there are 
eighty-six members, taking no account of those who have come and 
gone in the interim. Primarily formed to provide proper social 
atmosphere for the young men of St. Patrick's parish, the council 
has during the late war broadened its scope and co-operated with the 
entire community in all the war drives and relief work, and has 
also raised separate funds for the maintenance of moral uplift work 
in the army camps and cantonments in this country and overseas. 
Twenty-two of the eighty-six members have been in army service, 
part of the number being still in France. John A. Sugrue, present 
Grand Knight, represented the council on the board of the War 
Chest drive, when the Red Cross, Y. M. C. A., K. of C, Jewish Wel- 
fare and Salvation Army joined hands to raise funds for the sup- 
port of all. 

The remaining officers of the council are : Deputy grand knight, 
Christopher Rath ; chancellor, Harry Sellars ; guards, M. J. Brophy, 
and Anthony Fisher; advocate, T. M. Shea; recording secretary, 
Edward Brandenburg; financial secretary, Francis J. Brennan; 
trustees, T. A. Hennesy, M. J. Brophy and William Purcell. 

Industry in Bellefontaine began with log cabin building, in 
which for the greater part "every man was his own architect," at 
least until he had a roof over his head, when specialization set in. 

Nathaniel Dodge not only kept a public house, but was Belle- 
fontaine's first shoemaker. Shoes, of course, called for leather, 
and the first of several tanneries was established by Leonard Houtz 
and Jacob Staley, outside the southwest corner of the town plat. 

The very first saddler was Justice Edwards — also known in 
the county as a school teacher. He was soon competed with in the 
saddlery business by Martin Shields, and by a man named Chevalier. 
Abner Riddle was a journeyman saddler in the Chevalier shop about 
1826, but did not locate permanently in the county seat at that time. 

William Powell was the first carpenter and cabinet maker, 
and though not written down as an undertaker, he made coffins, 
using the native walnut from the Marmon sawmill in Mad river 

The first blacksmith was Thomas Good, who had' a shop on 
East Chillicothe avenue, nearly opposite the site of the first Epis- 
copal chapel. 

John Powell was the first tailor, in a community where home- 
made buckskin breeches prevailed. Jacob Powell was a gunsmith. 

But these were only the "first." Many a rival establishment 
was opened as the village grew. The blacksmithies developed into 
wagon shops. A distillery and, after awhile, a brewery started 
up outside the old corporation limits, but these long ago "died the 

From William Powell's shop to Stupp's and Kennedy Brothers', 
or from John Powell's to the tailors, clothiers and haberdashers 
of modern Bellefontaine — Geiger, Wolfheim, Parker, Hamilton & 
Co. and others — seems a far cry, but every line presents the same 
degree of progress, both in trade and manufacture. 

In the industrial history of Bellefontaine one line of manu- 


facture has from the first occupied a major part of the field, and 
while at the present time other lines have risen to equal rivalry, 
vehicle making is still a distinguishing industry in Bellefontaine, 
and one for which this city is known in every part of the United 
States among buyers and manufacturers. 

Beginning with the pioneer blacksmiths, who of necessity be- 
came wheelwrights and wagon makers to supply the needs of the 
times, rising prosperity created a market which could better be sup- 
plied by local manufacture than by any other means; and a demand 
for vehicles of a high grade came as quickly, for the settlers of 
Logan county were but a generation removed from the refinements 
of the oldest civilization in America, and had no process of evo- 
lution to pass through in this regard. They knew what they wanted. 

Whether the shop of William Pollock on Detroit street, in 
which he followed blacksmithing, wheel and wagon making, or the 
little brick shop on East Chillicothe street at the site of the Leister 
JoHantgen residence was the first permanent home of the industry, 
is indeterminate and of no importance. Both were early enough 
to claim the honor of pioneering. But the distinguishing line of 
manufacture begun at the latter place by the Emery brothers, John, 
Peter and George, who came to Bellefontaine in 1849, deserves first 
mention. Their specialty was pleasure vehicles, originally and elab- 
orately designed, and usually made to order. Carriages of every 
description were made, every part of the work being produced in 
the local factory. The luxuriousness of finish, fittings and trappings 
can scarcely be conveyed here, but an immediate fame followed the 
industry which spread afar. Many people still remember vividly 
the celebrated "swan sleigh" — designed and made by the Emerys — 
a creation of white and gold, with its sides fashioned in the sweep- 
ing lines of a floating swan, with gorgeous cushionings, in which 
the gay youth of Bellefontaine swept over the snowy highways, 
the envy of all beholders. It ended its days (which were long in 
the land of Logan) in a sombre coat of black, but the merry parties 
it carried enjoyed it none the less. The Emery brothers began their 
work in the shop on East Chillicothe avenue, but soon built larger 
quarters on the east side of Detroit street, where, in 1853, Amos 
Miller, who came to Bellefontaine from Cleveland, Ohio, had estab- 
lished himself in the carriage industry in the Pollock shop on the 
west side. Both factories grew, and after a period of several years 
the Emery brothers withdrew from the field while still in the high 
tide of success, to engage in less strenuous pursuits, while Amos 
Miller's brothers, David J., Jacob N. and Samuel P. Miller, all 
of Wayne county, Ohio, came to join him in the more exten- 
sive manufacture of carriages and pleasure vehicles which he had 
planned. Miller Brothers then became the leading firm in this line, 
and held the center of the field for more than thirty years follow- 
ing. They were the patentees of the famous "Eureka" jump-seat 
buggy, which had a popularity as wide as the country, and were 
the originators of the carriage body business, to which they turned 
their attention exclusively, incorporating under the name of the 
Miller Carriage Company. Some degree of unwisdom in promoting 
too many novelties in style, the sudden uprise of the automobile 


trade, and, chiefly, advancing age finally brought this time-honored 
business to an end about twenty years ago. Amos Miller died 
March 6, 1910, and David J. Miller (father of Charles Miller), now 
eighty-nine years of age, is the only one of the Miller brothers 

The A. J. Miller and Company Auto Bodies plant, which now 
occupies quarters with some hundred thousand square feet of floor 
space under roof, is not an outgrowth of the former Miller estab- 
lishments, although Alfred J. Miller ("Allie" Miller), the sole pro- 
prietor, is the son of Amos Miller. The present business was 
begun in a small shop at the site of the King buggy repair shop 
on Detroit street, in which Mr. Miller, then nineteen years of age, 
opened for business on his own initiative and "capital." Before 
so very long the business had outgrown this little shop and was 
moved to the old Everett tannery, where C. L. Robb's factory now 
stands. This place being destroyed by fire April 19, 1890, Mr. 
Miller purchased the Byers property lying in the angle of the rail- 
way tracks south of the Big Four depot, where he erected the 
frame part of the present large plant. More ground was added 
presently, and the property now comprises seven acres, part of 
which is neatly parked. The business has been enlarged from time 
to time since 1890, and since 1911 has been devoted exclusively to 
the manufacture of auto bodies, of which practically every variety 
is made, for civil and military uses, the chief line now being ambu- 
lances, hearses and a complete line of motor driven vehicles for 
the undertaking trade. Work is done by contract for auto manufac- 
turers, and for the direct purchaser, and the entire process from 
start to finish is completed in this factory, the bodies leaving it ready 
for the chassis. The Miller factory also assembles a chassis of its 
own, known as the "Miller." 

Various other vehicle concerns have flourished and gone their 
way during the decades, the little shop on East Chillicothe having 
accommodated, successively, after the Emerys, Younglove and 
McLaughlin ; Fossler, Green and Company ; Falte, Green and Com- 
pany; H. C. Garwood and Company (1883) ; Kingsbury and Crock- 
ett (1893) ; Kingsbury and Rawlings for awhile, the Kingsbury firm 
removing in 1908 to their present location between Auburn and 
Patterson streets, west of Main, where the Kingsbury buggy and 
auto works does a repair and rebuilding business. Joseph JoHant- 
gen, who originally came to Bellefontaine to enter the Miller broth- 
ers factory, established himself in business in the Detroit street 
quarters, and now occupies both the old Emery and the Miller sites, 
in a prosperous business along auto repairing lines. The Miller 
works was moved to the old Bellefontaine skating rink, which 
stood off East Chillicothe avenue near where is now the residence 
of W. T. Haviland, and from there to the empty building of the 
defunct woolen mill, which has since been converted into a mattress 
factory. In the old chapel of the United Presbyterians, on Detroit 
street, David J. Miller at one time engaged in the carriage business 
with a son-in-law of Amos Miller, Mr. Kiplinger, the place being 
occupied afterward by Barker and Foulk in the same line, while, 
eleven years ago, Harry W. Eaton took the building and continued 


the industry until 1916, when he changed it to automobile repair- 
ing. The Dodge Brothers Motor car has its agency there. 

Other temporary firms in this line have been Duddy, Fossler 
and Goodwin, Duddy and Goodwin, and O. S. Goodwin. The origi- 
nal Pollock establishment on Detroit street was removed to the 
neighborhood of the Colton mill — not then built. 

Lawrence Rausenberger, a boy born and reared in Logan 
county, on a farm near DeGraff, was always of the type who 
"wanted to see the wheels go around," and after the death of his 
father, he removed with his mother to Bellefontaine. Here he 
learned the machinist's art and was employed in the A. J. Miller 
factory, where his unusual ability and originality were constantly 
in evidence. At this period he conceived an idea for an airplane 
motor, for which he made his own patterns, assembling the cast- 
ings, and, collaborating with a young colleague from Vermont, 
who built the plane, after which the whole was successfully tried 
out in public and exhibited at the Logan county fair in 1913, and 
at other points. The flights were made by the partner, who, though 
an expert, lost his life in an accident soon after. Young Rausen- 
berger, diverted from the thought of becoming an aviator, con- 
tinued the perfecting of his motor, which became recognized by 
experts as superior, and certain features of it were adopted in the 
"Liberty" motor, assembled under government supervision for army 
airplane use. 

With the gradual decline of the great lumbering camps and 
sawmills in Logan county, the more modern of the latter attracted 
woodworking industries which availed themselves of the machin- 
ery. In connection with the Mack Dickinson sawmill in the north- 
west part of Bellefontaine, N. H. Walker in 1879 erected a saw, 
scroll and planing mill, where furniture parts were manufactured 
in the rough, and where the manufacture of chairs was begun, al- 
though the unfinished product was chiefly shipped to firms in New 
York and Boston. The firm collapsed, however, and the plant was 
idle in the eighties, when the father of W. T. Haviland purchased 
it; and in 1886 the firm of Chichester and Haviland (junior) came 
to Bellefontaine and embarked in the manufacture of chairs, using 
the Walker building. Their product was begun and finished in the 
local plant. Several years of prosperous business ensued, but in the 
financial depression of 1893 the manufacture was discontinued. The 
building was later sold by Haviland, senior, to the Citizens' Ice 
and Supply Company, a regularly organized stock concern, whose 
officers and directors are Nevin U. Smith, president ; W. T. Havi- 
land, vice-president ; Charles H. Zearing, secretary, treasurer and 
manager; John E. Miller, W. G. Wissler. The affairs of the com- 
pany may be briefly termed "one hundred per cent solid," with 
a fine surplus, and paid, at the end of the last year, an eight per cent 
dividend on stock. 

The warehouses of Keller & Gebby in Bellefontaine are the 
oldest in the county, built about 1850, by David Boyd, operated by 
Douglas & Gardner for some time, then by Boyd & Ghormley, 
and later by David Boyd & Sons, who controlled it for a period of 


from twenty to thirty years, or until 1886, when the plant and busi- 
ness was sold to Armstrong, Elliott & Co., D. C. Keller being the 
"company." After three years Mr, Elliott retired from the firm, 
which Mr. Frank Dowell then entered, the name changing to Arm- 
strong, Keller & Co., under which business was conducted from 
1889 to 1899. As Keller & Dowell the firm continued from 1899 
to 1906, when Elmer R. Gebby replaced Mr. Dowell — and he firm 
of Keller & Gebby is now entering its thirteenth successful year. 
Thus nearly seventy years' continuous elevator shipping and stor- 
age business has been carried on from this historic plant, which is 
the largest concern of its nature within a wide circle. Branch plants 
are located at Bellecentre, New Richland and Huntsville, and the 
business done here is commensurate with the importance of Belle- 
fontaine as a commercial center. Grain, seed, wool, coal, hay and 
builders' supplies are the lines handled. 

The A. R. Kerr & Co. warehouse business was founded in 1870, 
by R. S. Kerr & Co., and operated under that name until 1895, when 
it was changed to Kerr Brothers, who maintained the same lines of 
trade and shipping until 1915. The death of R. S. Kerr occurring in 
May, 1915, the firm was reorganized, becoming A. R. Kerr & Co., 
A. R. Kerr being the son of the founder. Coal, grain, wool and 
feed are the lines of commerce now engaged in by the firm. The 
present warehouse and office stands south of Auburn street, extend- 
ing south to the alley, but formerly was situated on the north side 
of Auburn, on railroad ground, using a part of the space once occu- 
pied by the old "Bee Line" roundhouse. It then covered the his- 
toric Blue Jacket spring, the water from which was piped into the 
office of the warehouse for drinking purposes. In the old round- 
house days, the same spring furnished water for the engines of the 
road, the once well-known Michael Kelly operating the pumping 
engine which kept the tank filled. Also, it was the water from 
this spring which played a major part in subduing the great con- 
flagration of 1856, when Bellefontaine narrowly escaped being wiped 
from the map, the "Bucket Brigade" maintaining a line of water 
from the spring to the fire. After all this service, it seems hardly 
credible that this flowing fountain of pure water should be hidden 
away in the debris of a neglected spot. It is, however, still there 
in the old place, though tightly covered, and requiring a six-inch 
pipe to conduct its waters to a sewer. Bellefontaine owes it to 
itself to bring the forgotten fountain to light and perpetuate it. 

The lumber market in Bellefontaine is supplied by two con- 
cerns, the oldest of which is of long history, having its beginnings 
in the firm of Hoge, Williamson and Brown. In 1876 this firm 
became, by deaths and reorganization, Williamson and LeSourd. 
At Mr. Williamson's death, Mr. LeSourd took his sons into part- 
nership, the firm becoming A. LeSourd and Sons, and the business 
is now conducted as "The A. LeSourd Sons company," Mr. LeSourd 
senior having departed this life in 1914. The LeSourd company 
have played an important part in the building up of Bellefontaine, 
erecting, upon their own initiative, many houses of which the in- 
creasing population of the city gladly availed themselves. Other " 
firms who deserve special mention in this connection are the real 



estate firms of Carter brothers, and Hamilton brothers, both of 
which have built extensively, providing homes for the rapid influx 
of industrial forces in the city. The second lumber concern is the 
Logan County Lumber company, which is the largest lumber ware- 
house in the county, and operates a wood-working department at 
its headquarters on Patterson street. This plant was established 
by the Peter Kunz company about fifteen years ago (in 1904), with 
capital largely local, and the manager is Mr. E. Ray Allebaugh, a 
business man of high standing. 

The O'Brien Stone company of Bellefontaine, is an important 
industry, manufacturing crushed and pulverized limestone from do- 
mestic sources, as well as cut and building stone, which is imported. 
The headquarters of the company is located near the original quar- 
ries of Logan county, west of Bellefontaine. 

The Bellefontaine Bridge and Steel company was organized 
and incorporated about 1890, and began business on Garfield street, 
at the vicinity of the Bell Novelty company and the Grabiel apple 
warehouse. After a few years a new location, where space was 
less expensive, became desirable and a new plant was erected, around 
which the growing suburb of Iron City has clustered, the land being 
platted into lots for the homes of employees. The plant was de- 
stroyed by fire in 1906, but the company almost immediately rebuilt, 
on a larger scale, to meet the increasing business prospects. This 
concern has been a boon to the city of Bellefontaine, as it has fur- 
nished steady employment since its beginning, and under the effi- 
cient management of Mr. John E. Miller, who entered the employ 
of the company in 1895, coming here from his native state, Vermont, 
it has become a great financial success. The product, which is 
normally devoted to bridge and structural steel, will be resumed as 
soon as the government contracts for war materials are completed. 
Fully one hundred employees are kept busy at the plant. The capital 
stock, which originally was $10,000, has grown to $150,000. The 
officers and board of directors at present stand as follows : president, 
John L. Longfellow ; vice-president, F. E. Milligan ; secretary-treas- 
urer and general manager, John E. Miller; Dr. W. S. Phillips and 
George P. Worrell. 

The Colton Brothers company, merchant millers, is the oldest 
mill in Bellefontaine, and the largest by far in the county, covering 
nearly two acres enclosure, and standing on its original site between 
the railroad tracks, fronting on Columbus street west. The per- 
sonnel of the original firm was Robert and Joseph Colton, who built 
the mill in 1869, since which date the business has been continuous 
for practically fifty years, with steady growth. The original mill 
operated with old-fashioned "buhrs," but in the summer of 1918 the 
capacity of the mill was greatly enlarged by the installation of a 
three hundred horsepower engine, supplemented by an oil engine of 
one hundred horsepower, the flour milling capacity now being six 
hundred barrels daily, and corn meal and feeds, two hundred barrelS: 
About one hundred tons of corn and other feeds can be turned out 
daily, when desired. The average output of flour is in the neighbor- 
hood of one hundred thousand barrels annually. The warehouse has 
room for storing about one hundred thousand bushels of grain. The 


product goes southeast into the Virginias and Carolinas, and also 
far to the northeast, exports to England and Scotland in normal 
times, being extensive. During the war with Germany shipping has 
been under government supervision. The Colton brothers were in 
active business connection with the mill until the death of Robert 
Colton in the spring of 1918, and that of Joseph Colton in the spring 
of 1917. The business was incorporated in 1900, and the personnel 
of the present firm is: Edwin M. Colton, president; Alfred S. 
Colton, vice-president; C. J. Pierce, secretary; H. K. Humphrey, 
treasurer and manager. 

The question of why a county so noted for wool production as 
Logan does not manufacture an ounce of wool for the trade is not 
yet satisfactorily answered. Attempts have been made in this direc- 
tion, but from no vital cause have failed. The Peerless Bedding 
company now occupies a building which was erected by John F. 
Miller for a woolen mill, and which prospered for a time, but failed 
because the proprietor, a saloon-keeper, was more interested in 
wildcat mining schemes than in wool manufacture, and sacrificed 
the industry to the injury of others as well as himself. The building 
was idle for some time, or used for temporary manufacturing en- 
deavors, then occupied by the Miller brothers' carriage body works, 
and finally, at the suggestion of an outside investor, opened up about 
1900 as a mattress factory in charge of Howenstine and Huston, who 
engaged a capable manager and included the manufacture of com- 
forts and pillows in the industry, which grew rapidly to a volume 
worth hundreds of thousands annually. The present manufacturers 
of the same lines, incorporated in 1911, and the building is rented 
to them. The firm was re-organized in 1914, and now stands as 
Bennett and Goodfellow, after several changes in its personnel. 
Bennett and Goodfellow are sterling business men and their product 
is of sterling manufacture, consisting of mattresses of cotton, wool 
and "silk fibre," the latter known by the trade name of "Kapoc." 
Pillows are made both of feathers and of cotton. A government 
contract for fifteen thousand beds is just now, January, 1919, being 
brought to completion. 

Other industries which have become prominent and are growing 
in magnitude and importance are the J. L. Simpson company, iron 
castings; the Ironwood Manufacturing company, machine products; 
the Clingerman machine shop; the Humphrey Bronze and Alumi- 
num company, and the Kauff man Metal Parts company ; all of which 
are adding to the material prosperity of Bellefontaine, and all of 
which have been doing important war work for the government 
during the two years past. 

It seems unnecessary to say that the really great financial tower 
of strength in Bellefontaine is the pay-roll of the Big Four shops 
and terminal, and the division offices. These plants, located in 
Bellefontaine in 1890 for the now trifling bonus of one hundred thou- 
sand dollars voted by the citizens, are at present more than equal, 
in dollars and cents returned, to all the other industries in the city. 
More than half a million dollars annually are being poured into Belle- 
fontaine by means of the Big Four pay-roll. The great terminals 
have been enlarged in the season just past (1918), and still greater 


additions are planned. The third floor of the beautiful Canby block 
is occupied, entire, by the division offices. 

A commercial asset of decided importance to Bellefontaine is 
the wholesale groceries concern of F. N. Johnson & Co., which 
occupies its own large warehouse on West Chillicothe street. 
It was established in 1900, and is not only the first but the only 
wholesale house in this line in Logan county, and is operated by a 
live wire company, the officers of which should be given the credit 
they are too modest to claim. The officers and board of directors 
are : president and manager, F. N. Johnson ; vice-president, L. A. 
Chapman (Lima, Ohio); secretary-treasurer, A. L. Kendall; Emil 
Geiger, Max Kaufman, and J. L. Longfellow. With practically the 
same personnel, the F. N. Johnson Maple Syrup company (an en- 
tirely separate firm) was formed in 1917, which operates branch 
plants in Geauga county and in Essex, Vermont. Charles Mc- 
Laughlin and A. P. Johnson are included in this board of directors. 

A new industry or line of commerce recently opened in Belle- 
fontaine is the hides and pelts depot of the Brown brothers, which 
bids fair to promote the local welfare by centralizing the product of 
Logan county in this line. 

Of the industry of the county at large, which is pre-eminently 
agricultural in character, two elements may be broadly said to have 
contributed chiefly to its development, the Sheep Breeders' asso- 
ciation and its successor, the Logan County Woolgrowers' associa- 
tion, and the Logan County Fair association. The sheep and wool 
industry had the encouragement of Judge Lawrence, whose interest 
in and knowledge of these questions was of the greatest value and 
developed early; and the county fair, which, with the possible lapse 
of one or two seasons, has been held annually for seventy years or 
more, has promoted agriculture in all its lines, as well as the fine and 
homely arts of farm and domestic life. The Granges, also, have 
been a benefit to the rural communities. 

Bellefontaine banks and loan companies occupy an enviable 
position in the public confidence which is well deserved, for it has 
been won entirely upon merit and not through advertising. Finan- 
cial gales have passed over this city as well as others, but its banks 
have weathered them all without harm. 

The oldest financial institution in Logan county is the People's 
National bank, which was first organized as a private firm in 1854, 
by William Rutan and Abner Riddle, under the firm name of Rutan 
and Riddle, and, with re-organizations at different milestones along 
the way, has had an uninterrupted existence ever since that date. 
The firm employed Robert Lamb as cashier, and as the People's 
bank the business was conducted. After a few years Mr. Lamb 
was taken into the firm, which became Rutan, Riddle & Co., with- 
out change of the bank title. At the next re-organization J. B. 
Williams entered the firm, which did not change name. Reuben B. 
Keller entered the bank in 1869 as clerk and messenger. In 1880 the 
bank was again re-organized, being chartered July 1, 1880, as "The 
People's National bank," with Abner Riddle, president; J. B. 
Williams, vice-president; Robert Lamb, cashier; Reuben B. Keller, 
assistant cashier. The bank was capitalized at $100,000, which re- 


mains the same, while the accumulated surplus and undivided profits 
approximate at this date (January, 1919) $55,000, with total re- 
sources over one million dollars. The newly elected officers are: 
W. W. Riddle, president; John E. West, vice-president; R. B. Keller, 
cashier; F. L. Cory, R. B, Hiatt and Ray S. Fisher, assistants. 
Mr. Keller is the second cashier in the history of the bank, and the 
only one left of the working force of the bank when he entered it 
in 1869. The headquarters of the bank were remodeled, enlarged 
and modernized in 1908, when special attention was paid to the 
safe deposit department, which is of the strongest construction, 
while the general equipment and furnishings of the bank are mas- 
sive, artistic and commodious. 

The earliest Bellefontaine institution to be so chartered, is 
the Bellefontaine National bank, which was organized in 1870, and 
opened for business April, 1871, with $100,000 capital. _ The first 
president was Judge William Lawrence, under whom it was or- 
ganized, and who retained the presidency until shortly before his 
death ; vice-president, J. N. Allen ; cashier, James Leister ; assistant, 
and bookkeeper, Charles McLaughlin. At the date of January 1, 
1919, the surplus and undivided profits are $47,000, the resources of 
the bank aggregating close to $1,000,000. From 1909 to 1918, de- 
posits have increased $287,853 to $643,132. Mr. Charles McLaugh- 
lin is now the president, Charles S. Hockett, vice-president, Fred C. 
Spittle, cashier, and S. W. Huffer and Miss Cora Zearing the as- 
sistants. The bank was originally housed at the same corner 
where it now stands, but in the old building which had accom- 
modated the Gazette printing office, and a drug store. Dr. Aaron 
Hartley being the owner of the property, which was purchased 
and remodeled to meet the needs of the bank. In 1892 this old 
building was torn down and the present substantial bank building 
erected on its site. 

The Commercial and Savings Bank company is the youngest 
of the Bellefontaine banks, being organized April 8, 1901, and opened 
for business in October of the same year, in the building now oc- 
cupied by the Emil Geiger clothing house. This position was ex- 
changed several years ago for the situation in the Watson Block 
at the northeast corner of North Main and Columbus streets, which 
was remodeled in modern style and with good taste for the bank- 
ing business. The original directors were Robert Colton, presi- 
dent; Alfred Butler, vice-president; Harry S. Kerr, cashier; Fred 
C. Spittle, assistant; T. F. Bushey, W. W. Fisher, Mack Dickin- 
son, Edw. W. Patterson, William R. Niven and E. P. Chamberlain. 
Capital stock, $30,000; surplus and undivided profits, date of De- 
cember 31, 1918, $30,000; resources, practically a half million. The 
present officers and board are: Edw. W. Patterson, president; 
William T. Haviland, vice-president ; Alfred Butler, cashier ; Harry 
E. Travis, assistant. Niven U. Smith, Fred W. Arnold, John R. 
Cassady, Edw. M. Colton, and Robt. P. Dickinson. 

The Citizens' Building and Loan company is the oldest or- 
ganization of its character in Bellefontaine, having been established 
January 29, 1885, by Thomas L. Hutchins, president; Isaac N. 
Zearing, vice-president; Joseph C. Brand, jr., secretary; John B. 


Williams, treasurer; Ducan Dow, Frank J. Scarff and Patrick F. 
Dugan. The resources of the institution have grown to full $750,- 
000, according to report of December 31, 1918. Its present board of 
directors is as follows: I. N. Zearing, president; Charles Mc- 
Laughlin, vice-president ; W. W. Riddle, solicitor ; Mary A. Cheever, 
secretary; J. D. McLaughlin, C. B. Churchill and R. M. Wissler. 

The Savings Building and Loan company was organized and 
established by Capt. William Lane, president, and Corey L. Lane, 
secretary, in July, 1891, and carried on along the usual lines, becom- 
ing a solid institution with total resources, to date, $746,000. Earn- 
ings and distribution equal about $40,000. Its 1919 organization is: 
Dr. R. W. Chalfant, president ; W. E. Smith, vice-president ; John 
D. Inskeep, secretary; A. Jay Miller, solicitor; Fred C. Spittle and 
Fremont C. Hamilton, directors. 

The Bellefontaine Building and Loan company was organized 
in 1894, and is now twenty-five years of age. It started business in 
the second story of the old building which, partially destroyed by 
fire some years ago, has been replaced by the new Lawrence block, 
on South Main street. The company then consisted of Joseph 
Colton, Anson B. Carter, Alfred Butler, Mack Dickinson, Reuben B. 
Keller, M. R. Boales and L. E. Corey, first secretary. Joseph Colton 
and Mack Dickinson, both deceased, have been replaced in the 
company by Leister JoHantgen and Charles Zearing, while Charles 
S. Hockett succeeded M. R. Boales, who moved away from Belle- 
fontaine some years ago. The present secretary is F. W. Arnold, 
under whose management the growth and prosperity of the in- 
stitution has been almost phenomenal. In the quarters on West 
Columbus avenue the company is beginning to fit rather tightly, 
and the business is growing, with loans totalling about one and a 
half millions, and resources of three million dollars. 

The Bellefontaine Chamber of Commerce was formed, of rep- 
resentative business and professional men, April 1, 1916. Its pur- 
pose is to build up and promote the commercial, industrial and civic 
interests of the city and community. That it will fulfill its avowed 
purpose of "a bigger, busier, better Bellefontaine," is assured by 
the character of its membership. The official organization of the 
current year is: President, John P. Aikin; vice-president, Myran 
LeSourd; treasurer, Alfred Butler; secretary, Merlyn R. Whitney; 
Committees : Business, A. P. Humphreys ; organization, G. E. 
Underbill; agricultural, O. P. Morris; civic, J. O. Stiles; at large, 
H. K. Humphrey, W. H. Hamilton, George K. Werrell. 


It is not the intention of the writer of this article to attempt a 
detailed account of the rise, progress, and present attainments of 
each of Logan county's schools, but to treat of their evolution in 
a general way. 

Perhaps the most difficult problem that school men have been 
trying to solve for the past forty years is what to do with the rural 
school that it may keep pace with the progressive spirit of the times. 
The backward look is sometimes a pleasing as well as a profitable 


pastime since it affords us a better realization of what has been 
done by comparing what was with what is. 

The first work of the pioneer of old Logan was providing for 
the physical welfare of his family. Food, clothing, and shelter were 
absolute necessities, to furnish which forests must be cleared and 
drained and arable fields carved from the trackless wilderness. It 
is a significant fact that in all pioneer settlements, as soon as a 
comfortable cabin was erected, and a little corn planted, a log school 
house was rolled up. A cavernous fire place filled the rear end ; 
the outside chimney was made of sticks and mud ; the roof, often, of 
logs chinked with leaves over which a covering of dirt was packed ; 
the windows were mere slits between the logs, glazed with greased 
paper; the seats were rude benches hand-made. 

What a "Red Letter'' day for the entire community was the 
dedication of this first Temple of Learning. 

"There, in his noisy mansion, skilled to rule, 
The village master taught his little school; 
A man severe he was, and stern to view, 
I knew him well, and every truant knew ; 
Well had the boding tremblers learned to trace 
The day's disasters in his morning face ; 
Full well they laughed with counterfeited glee 
At all his jokes, for many a joke had he ; 
Full well the busy whisper, circling round, 
Conveyed the dismal tidings when he frowned; 
Yet he was kind, or if severe in aught, 
The love he bore to learning was in fault. 
The village all declared how much he knew ; 
'Twas certain he could write, and cipher too : 
Lands he could measure, terms and tides presage, 
And even the story ran that he could gauge. 
In arguing, too, the parson owned his skill. 
For e'en though vanquished, he could argue still ; 
While words of learned length and thund'ring sound 
Amazed the gazing rustics ranged around. 
And still they gazed, and still the wonder grew 
That one small head could carry all he knew. 
But past is all his fame. The very spot, 
Where many a time he triumphed, is forgot." 

Though myriads of bacilli, microbes, and germs of every known 
variety lurked in the chinks of the walls, or held high carnival in 
the cracks of the puncheon floors, the unwary rustics thoroughly 
enjoyed their school life and many of them passed their fourscore 
milestone before succumbing to heart failure. 

The public school system of Ohio was established in 1821, and 
four years later the first uniform law on school taxes was passed, 
directing the county commissioners to levy one-half mill for com- 
mon school purposes, only one-half of which could be expended for 
a site and a house. Ten years later the maximum amount of school- 
house tax was fixed at $300. In 1853 the power of taxation for 


schoolhouse construction was vested in boards of education, which 
resulted in an increased amount available for building purposes. 

The log house was replaced by one of frame or brick all con- 
structed on the same architectural plan, which of necessity was 
marked by great simplicity. Of equipment for teaching there was 
little if any. No attempt was made to beautify either school room 
or grounds. The three R's may have been well taught; but the 
spiritualizing influences so necessary to educational uplift were 

The pioneer having settled the country, now began to settle 
down and improve country life. New methods of communication, 
better means of transportation, had brought the erstwhile isolated 
farmer right into the hurry and bustle of the world's work. Newer 
and better comforts of life were within his reach. His two-roomed 
cabin had given place to a commodious modern house. His ample 
barns afforded storage for the greater harvests improved machin- 
ery and scientific farming had made possible. No longer was the 
old lumber wagon used for social visits or for church going, the 
carriage or automobile having taken its place. The successful 
farmer is not satisfied with mere creature comforts. Flowers, shrub- 
bery, and shade trees tastefully arranged on a well-kept lawn indi- 
cate his love for the beautiful in nature. Music, pictures, current 
magazines, and the masterpieces of the best authors, within his 
home, speak eloquently of higher ideals and a richer country life. 

But what about the country school house? Has it kept pace 
with its surroundings? 'Tis true that the old order has changed 
in many localities, and the improvement of house and grounds has 
given the country boy and girl a wider outlook and a richer life; 
but too often the box-car type, with its blank walls and desolate 
yard, remains. 

"Of the many pictures that hang on memory's wall," that of a 
dilapidated weather-beaten structure seemeth most vivid. The little 
old building stood on the edge of a ravine back of which were 
forest trees. 

One stormy morning, late in November, an old man mounted 
on a shambling farm horse was slowly approaching this temple of 
learning, for such it was. Behind the old man sat a terror-stricken 
young girl. Soon the building was in sight and gathered around 
its door was a group of eager rustics of every age and size. The 
zero hour came all too quickly; the horse stopped, the girl dis- 
mounted, and twenty pairs of eyes were focused upon her. The 
very critical examination seemed to result in the unanimous deci- 
sion that her head could carry all she knew and not be over- 
crowded. The door was open ; a fire made ; the director, mounting 
his old horse, slowly rode away, and the three months' campaign 
began. It was fierce, but there were no casualties, though four 
months slowly rolled by before hostilities ceased along that line. 

"Still sits that schoolhouse by the road, 
A ragged beggar sleeping.; 
Around it still the sumachs grow. 

And blackberry vines are creeping ; 


Within the teacher's desk is seen. 

Deep scarred by raps official; 
The warping floor, the battered seats, 

The jack-knife's carved initial; 

The charcoal frescoes on its wall ; 
Its door's worn sill, betraying 
The feet that creeping slow to school 
Went storming out to playing! 

For many years have wintry suns 

Shone over it at setting; 
Lit up its western window panes, 

And low eaves icy fretting." 

The writer was delighted to hear recently that the old build- 
ing had been abandoned and the children of the neighborhood are 
now conveyed to Jerusalem for instruction. 

"Education is a living into better things." The country boy 
who knows only hard work sees little of the divine joy of rural 
life. Under the old regime this was too often his portion. Educa- 
tors had long been considering his case, and at a meeting of the 
National Educational Association in 1897 the Committee of Twelve 
on Country Schools reported in favor of consolidation or centrali- 

Many good movements often meet with open hostility or at 
least with indifference and such was the fate of the consolidation 
idea when first presented in Logan county. 

Rural schools in northeastern Ohio, having tried the plan, had 
found in it higher educational advantages and were publishing 
abroad the good news. Some of this literature found its way into 
the hands of two public-spirited young people of Union township, 
a youth and a maiden, who immediately had a vision. The little 
"red school house," with its charcoal frescoes, had given place to 
a two-roomed edifice. On its delicately tinted walls hung choice 
works of art. A well-filled bookcase graced one side of the room 
while a table nearby was piled with current literature. The school 
yard was no longer barren and cheerless, having been transformed 
into a place of beauty by trees, flowers, vines, and shrubs. 

The longer they meditated the more enticing grew the vision. 
Without consulting the wise men of the neighborhood, the young 
enthusiasts invited a gentleman from Toledo to come and present 
the subject with all its advantages. They knew the speaker would 
expect some remuneration, but of course his convinrino- words 
would draw from deep pockets a sum sufficient for all expenses 
with a surplus for Perry pictures and flower seeds.. 

The eventful evening came ; a capacity house greeted the speak- 
er, who eloquently told what great things were being done else- 
where. The youthful promoters were much elated at first, but long 
before the gentleman from Toledo concluded they realized by 
ominous shakes of gray heads and disapproving looks that passing 
the hat would be useless. 


"All's well that ends well," and it did for the speaker, the 
maiden's father coming to the rescue. Union township, however, 
still supports her original number of one-room rural schools. 

Logan county was slower than many other counties in adopting 
the new movement, but in course of time, she, too, fell into line. 
There are now twelve village and centralized schools, as follows : 
DeGraff, S. A. Frampton, superintendent; Quincy, Guy Garwood, 
superintendent; Stokes township, Clyde Lynn, superintendent; Mc- 
arthur, Huntsville, Ohio, H. Maffet, superintendent ; Bellecentre, 
J. Ralph McGaughy, superintendent; Rushsylvania, H. B, Straws- 
burg, superintendent; West Mansfield, Don Pyers, superintendent; 
Perry township, J. E. Dunaway, superintendent; Zane township, 
Panzy Grabiel, superintendent; Jefferson Township, Mentor Row- 
and, superintendent; West Liberty, S. H. Stanley, superintendent. 
These twelve men have the supervision of 114 teachers. All but 
Stokes maintain first-grade high schools, Stokes having a second- 

Four of these, Washington, McArthur-Huntsville, Perry, and 
Zane are wholly centralized. All of Richland township except one 
district is centralized at Belle Center and McArthur-Huntsville. 

The first in Logan county to centralize were McArthur-Hunts- 
ville and Perry, the former beating the latter by twenty-four hours. 

To carry into successful effect the new movement requires the 
remodeling of old structures and the building of new ones. Belle- 
centre remodeled her grade building this year and has a fine up-to- 
date high school under process of construction. The new centralized 
building of Zane, located at Middleburg, is a fine modern structure, 
containing a large auditorium and a room for domestic science and 
manual training, though not yet equipped for either. Washington's 
new building, located at Lewistown, is modern in every respect, 
equipped for home economics and manual training, having a gym- 
nasium and a large auditorium in which is installed the latest mo- 
tion-picture equipments. McArthur-Huntsville's building is also 
modern, its equipment being similar to that of Washington. 

Monroe township voted centralization in 1917 and a new build- 
ing is now being constructed, which when completed will close nine 
more one-room schools. 

The war has somewhat interfered with the centralization of 
schools, but with the dawn of peace, it is hoped that building opera- 
tions may be resumed and the one-room rural be a thing of the past. 

By the new school code county boards have the power to make 
transfers of townships or parts of townships. This means of cen- 
tralization tends to consolidate schools at trade and social centers. 
Harrison township in Champaign county is now being attached to 
the West Liberty district by the joint action of the two county 
boards. If all goes well, the result will be a centralized school at 
West Liberty and a new high school building. 

The aim of centralization is not to make the rural school a 
duplicate of the city school, or to abolish it entirely ; but, by means 
of a pleasanter environment and the advantages of a graded system, 
to enlarge and enrich the life of the country child, and to make the 
rural school "an expression of the intelligence and pride of the com- 


munity as well as a place to develop both." It is the only plan pro- 
posed that deals with the special characteristics of farm life and its 

Supervision is an improving factor in the present day rural 
school. Under the working- of the new code, which went into effect 
in 1914, the schools are under the close supervision of county, dis- 
trict, and village superintendents, who meet monthly to consider 
plans for the betterment of the schools under their care. 

J. W. McKinnon, well known as one of the Ohio's foremost 
educators, was the first county superintendent. His death occurred 
during his first term, and A. B. Lynn was then chosen to fill the 
vacancy, and also served one year afterward. Prof. E. A. Bell, for 
years a successful teacher in the county, is the present very efficient 
supervisor. Harry Ansley, also well known throughout the county, 
is the district superintendent, and has some sixty teachers over 
whom he must keep a watchful eye. 

Another important educational factor is the County Normal, 
located at West Liberty and established in 1915. H. W. Holycross, 
formerly of Belle Center, is its most efficient director. Its students 
are given a year of professional training, free. The average yearly 
enrollment has been twenty-five. The untrained teacher is almost 
unknown in Logan county. 

All of the village schools are admirably managed. The super- 
intendents are very efficient and each is ably assisted by a corps of 
excellent teachers. Two of these schools deserve special mention : 
De Graff is the only village high school in the county offering chem- 
istry and the only one having the honor to be on the recognized list 
of the North Central College association. The impress left upon 
West Liberty's schools by Prof. P. W. Search has deepened through 
the services rendered by succeeding superintendents and their able 
assistants. Her high school is now entitled to a place on the accred- 
ited list, though it has not, as yet, been formally enrolled thereon. 

Bellefontaine is having "a boom" in school building this year, 
planning to spend $145,000 for remodeling, repairing and building. 
The East building, erected in 1878 at a cost of $35,000, is being 
remodeled ; the high school and the North, South, and West build- 
ings are to be repaired, and a new building in the southwest section 
of the city is to be constructed in 1919. 

From a copy of the "Bellefontaine Union School Offering," pub- 
lished in 1855, the writer gathered much interesting information 
regarding the schools of our city when it was but a small village. 
Among the many items gleaned from that record of the long ago 
was the startling fact that our town was nearly a quarter of a century 
old before she had a single public school building. 

Prior to the year 1844 Bellefontaine had relied upon employing 
teachers who furnished rooms for school purposes as necessity might 
require or opportunity permit. Usually there were schools in dif- 
ferent parts of the village. Frequent changes in teachers and school- 
rooms, with no uniformity in teaching or in discipline, made it 
necessary for the rapidly growing town to provide better school 
facilities. Consequently four brick houses were erected for common 
school purposes, one house being located in each of the four corners 


of the town, which then covered sixteen blocks. These single room 
buildings soon filled with pupils of every grade and degree of prog- 
ress. Classification was impossible, and the schools were conducted 
with as much success as the unfavorable circumstances permitted. 

The continued growth of Bellefontaine and the progressive 
spirit of its citizens demanded better educational privileges for its 
young people. In 1852, by popular vote, it was determined to levy 
a sufficient tax for a Union School building; but the tax for that 
year, having been enjoined, necessary funds were not secured until 
the following year. 

Through the industry and energy of the School Board, consist- 
ing of Gen. Isaac S. Gardner, S. B. Taylor, William Thomas, M. D., 
William D. Scarff, M. D., B. S. Brown, M. D., and A. Casad, a very 
plain, three-story building was erected and furnished at a cost of 
$12,000. An excellent superintendent and a corps of eight experi- 
enced teachers having been secured, the Union School was formally 
opened in December, 1854. 

The members of the Board of Education were the fathers of the 
school, watching its growth and progress with all the anxiety of a 
parent. Their frequent, almost daily, visits encouraged the pupils 
and strengthened the teachers, as did also the many visits of patrons 
and friends. 

The building contained eleven large rooms and an auditorium, 
not then dignified by so classical a name, but called The Hall. The 
rooms were seated after the most approved model, and the black- 
boards were extensive and the best in the state. Included in the 
furnishings were two pianos, a library, a laboratory, and a geological 

The course of study for the grades was similar to the one now in 
vogue, but not so complete. What is lacked was' amply provided for 
in the high school curriculum. The mathematical requirements 
began with philosophical arithmetic and ended with dififerential and 
integral calculus. Nothing of mathematical nature was omitted. 
All of the 'ologies and 'osophies then known to scientists were 
included in the scientific course. 

Latin and Greek, plenty of both, were offered to gentlemen only. 
German and French were optional, but ladies were eligible to both. 
The modern languages were taught by a real German, Prof. Reinhold 
E. Henninges, whose pupils, from their excellent pronunciation and 
accuracy in speech, were often taken for native German. He was 
also the musical director, both instrumental and vocal music being 

A commercial college was connected with the Union School. 
Its faculty consisted of Supt. Parsons, Hon. Benjamin Stanton, Hon. 
William Lawrence, Hon. William H. West, and Robert Lamb. In- 
struction was given in bookkeeping and its collateral branches, polit- 
ical economy, commercial law, commercial ethics and penmanship. 
This extensive course of study required five years for completion. 
The first and second years constituted the academic department, 
and the remaining years the collegiate. The course was much sim- 
plified long before the writer had any personal acquaintance with 
the high school. , . . 


School activities, though not numerous, were not entirely lack- 
ing. Connected with the school were three prosperous literary- 
societies, which at the close of each term gave an entertainment in 
The Hall. The gentlemen displayed their oratorical ability, much 
attention being then given to public speaking, and the ladies their 
proficiency in theme writing. Trios, duets and choruses enlivened 
the exercises. 

A few excerpts from "The Offering" show the school spirit of 
the time : 

"Bellefontaine Union School : May it ever prosper and stand 
first in its onward course. May it spread its fame to an admiring 
world."— R. P. K. 

"Bellefontaine : May it continue to rise until it becomes a city 
of vast importance." 

"Board of Education : Bright shining stars in the literary firma- 
ment; may their luster never be dimmed by the clouds of adversity; 
may they ever be the polar star of the youths of Bellefontaine to 
guide them over the boisterous waves of life's ocean." 

"The Bellefontaine Union School Offering: The opening bud 
of our Union School. May its leaves ever bear the impress of truth, 
beauty, and intelligence ; may it continue to increase in importance 
as its contributors do in knowledge; may it never droop for want of 
sustenance, or be withered by the harsh criticism of the literati ; may 
it ever bear its truthful motto : 'Acknowledged ignorance is the 
beginning of wisdom.' " 

The following is suggestive of the spirit of him who did much in 
later years to beautify his home town : 

"Within the last few weeks there has been considerable im- 
provement in our town of Bellefontaine, and especially that portion 
called the Public Square. Some beautiful trees have been planted, 
which not only look well, but are an ornament to the town. May 
the citizens continue their good works and extend their labors, even 
to the Union School yard, where such improvement will be duly 
appreciated, and efficient service rendered in aiding such improve- 
ment. Try it and see for yourself." — R. P. K. 

"Bellefontaine Union School Bell : Long may it be heard ring- 
ing in this pleasant village, calling the youth to their studies. Long 
Live the Bell !" 

Though old and homeless, the bell is not entirely friendless. 
Many who once heeded its call are now hoping that it may soon 
resume business at the old stand. Tardiness was not permitted in 
the early history of the school. The tones of the bell rang out on 
the clear air for a stated period, then for five minutes it was tolled. 
At the last stroke the doors were shut and tardy loiterers were 
forced to homeward wend their weary way. "The Off ering" is 
considerate and reveals naught of the culprits' reception by father 
or mother. 

All examinations were oral. A board of twenty-four members, 
consisting of Dr. Jesse Holmes, William H. West, Rev. E. Raffen- 
sperger, Hon. Benjamin Stanton, Dr. Lord, William Hubbard, Rev. 
John Goodlin, C. W. B. Allison, Dr. T. L. Wright, Hon. William 
Lawrence. N. Z. McColloch, Matthew Anderson, and others, was 


chosen to examine pupils and report on the condition of schools. If 
the youthful aspirant for promotion satisfactorily answered the 
questions asked by the examiners and the judgment of the teacher 
approved the decision of the board, a certificate of promotion was 
granted, which, if marked O. K. by the teacher to whom it was 
presented, the child "passed." Rather a unique method of pro- 
cedure, but surely a conservation of paper, midnight oil, and peda- 
gogical nerve force. 

Supervised study hours were unknown. Teachers gently but 
firmly urged pupils to do their own thinking. If an entire evening 
was spent in determining how far the hound ran to catch the hare, 
what did it matter to the boy, so he was in at the death? If it 
required days to know the horizontal distance between two inacces- 
sible objects, there being no point from which both could be seen, 
there was no reason why one should not discover this for himself ; 
necessary measurements being given and a table of logarithmic sines 
and tangents furnished, time would do the rest. 

The school enrollment for the years 1854 and 1855 was 697. 
The names of R. P. Kennedy and Merrill Miller appear in the cata- 
logue of students. A few years later the name of Julius Chambers 
was placed on the roll ; and later still, that of Brand Whitlock. 

In the late fifties the members of the mathematical department 
were asked to write a short paragraph on a subject interesting to 
them. The time allotted was fifteen minutes. One member wrote 
the following: 

"May your names be distinguished for the glow of moral senti- 
ments and intellectual attainments. May they adorn the pages of 
our country's history and shine on like fixed stars in undiminished 
lustre from age to age." 

Has not this wish of the past been largely fulfilled in the 

The founders of our schools insisted that all the faculties, 
mental, moral and physical, should be carefully and equally culti- 
vated; that there should be no display in the schoolroom at the 
expense of more solid attainments. Their motto was "Esse quam 
videri." With such a beginning, is it any wonder that our schools 
have attained their present status? 

Bellefontaine had one school building in 1878. Now she has 
six, all up-to-date and well equipped; then her teaching force did 
not exceed twelve, now there are forty-five names on the teachers' 
pay-roll ; then its alumni roster numbered fifty-one, now it numbers 
approximately nine hundred and fifty graduates. Bellefontaine high 
school is on the accredited list. A fair percentage of her graduates 
enter some college or normal school. Busy and useful men and 
women are they, splendidly contributing to the world's work. In 
recent years the branches of manual training and domestic science 
have been introduced in the grades, and the studies of agriculture, 
home economics, public speaking and argumentation have been 
added to the high school curriculum. 

Bellefontaine is very proud of the fact that her schools have 
furnished to the home town so many teachers whose services, 
through a long term of years, have never been surpassed. Today 


the principals of her six schools, with one exception, are all home 
products, ably assisted by many who can claim old Logan as their 
birthplace. The Bellefontaine schools are under the efficient man- 
agement of Prof. R. J. Kiefer, superintendent. 

The schools of Logan county have played an important part in 
the world's greatest war. Many brave boys just out of school and 
others who cast books aside, eagerly answered the call to the colors. 
Blue stars on service flags have been replaced by golden ones. Many 
of our stalwart youths have made the supreme sacrifice and now 
sleep on foreign soil ; others will come back to us maimed and weak- 
ened for life. Their service was cheerfully given to secure and 
preserve to others those inalienable rights for which this nation was 
founded. That their service shall not have been in vain, those that 
remain must make "governments of the people, by the people, and 
for the people" safe for the world. 

Teachers mould the habits and the ideals of the boys and girls 
of today who soon shall be the men and women of tomorrow. Not 
greater intellectual ability, but greater earnestness and a deeper 
sense of responsibility is now needed in the classroom, that the boys 
and girls may successfully solve the great problems of the future. 
The world needs high-minded men who know the right and dare 
maintain it. 

The Past has made possible the Present, which in turn is respon- 
sible for the Future. What shall be the future of Logan county's 

Belle Center, the rural metropolis of the northern border of the 
county, has a lively little history all its own. The original pur- 
chasers of government land in this vicinity included Duncan Mc- 
Arthur, James Taylor and Walter Dunn. These early purchasers 
of large tracts sold subdivisions to settlers as they came prospecting 
for homes, the first among whom appears to have been James Hill 
and family, Avho had spent several years in Zanes Town (1810-1817), 
when they decided to take up a new tract in the virgin lands of the 
north. By the end of a dozen years there had followed them first, 
Thomas Rutledge and Thomas Burton, and in their train the names 
of Dowling, Scott, Thompson, Wilmuth, Hendricks and Hemphill, 
Wilmuth settling upon the land which became the site of North- 
wood, Hemphill upon that where the village of Richland was subse- 
quently laid out, while James Boyer became proprietor of a thousand 
acres which embraced the Indian village of Solomon's Town, now 
for many years the farm of A. C. McClure. 

Daniel Colvin purchased the tract upon which the village of 
Belle Center now stands. The Powers, Wysons, Grays, Harrods, 
Clarkes (Rev. Thomas), Brooks, Sesslers, Johnstons and numerous 
others were also of an early period, and Robert Boyd, Isaac Patter- 
son, Gersham Anderson and Cornelius Jameson had settled there 
before the end of the thirties. With few exceptions, these families 
were all from eastern states. 

The route of Hull's Trace was followed in opening the first 
thoroughfare which connected the northern settlements with the 
rest of the world, beginning at Cherokee, where it was met by a 
road from the county seat, Bellefontaine, and running to Richland 


village, where it struck off to the northwest. Upon this route, which 
bridged the swampy portions with stretches of "corduroy" and 
traversed by the Springfield and Sandusky stage line, John Hemp- 
hill dreamed of a fair little town to which the gay yellow coaches 
(often sadly spattered with black prairie mud, it must be surmised), 
should bring prosperity. He awoke and platted his dream upon 
paper, and the town became a reality, of log dwellings, and larger 
buildings, housing a "general store," and a hostelry surmounted by 
the sign, "E. Bain. At Home." A postoffice was established at 
once, Albert Chapman distributing the pioneers' mail. A church 
was organized, and presently a "frame meeting-house" and then a 
log schoolhouse reared themselves from among the stumps of the 
disappearing forest. Johnston and Mitchell opened a larger store, 
and frame dwellings began to replace the more primitive log archi- 

All this while, a new style of corduroy road, in which the logs 
were ridden by iron rails, had been creeping from Sandusky down 
into the valley of the Miami, toward Dayton, at the mouth of Mad 
river. The survey reached the northern settlements at last, and 
the tide of little Richland's affairs approached the flood. But alas ! 
While Richland hesitated over the small concessions of depot site 
and water supply, heeding not at all the warnings of its wiser citi- 
zens, landholders at Belle Center held forth liberal inducements, and 
the Mad River railroad built its station on the wide plain there, 
leaving Richland to slow collapse. 

Prosperity hops to the doorsill of those who have the courage to 
reach out and pluck it. The sugar orchard of 1846 had, in 1847, 
become Belle Center, a village growing apace. J. S. Johnston had 
moved hither his "general store," housing it in a building which 
rested its four corners solidly upon as many sturdy tree stumps. 
"Horton's Tavern" was erected about the same time, and the year 
after the "brick hotel" was built. 

It took twenty-one years for the village to reach its majority, 
but it was at last incorporated, and its first election held in 1867. 
Its first official family was: J. H. Brown, mayor; T. S. Patrick, 
recorder; David Herron, a member of the town council. A Masonic 
lodge had preceded the incorporation of the town, and the Odd- 
fellows organized soon after. The Methodists were the pioneer 
church builders of Belle Center, their first "class" having been 
formed in 1819, with the Hill family and a few friends, one negro 
(called Tom), and several Indians, the meetings being held at the 
Hill cabin, and from there taken to the house of (Rev.) William 
Brooks, thence to Daniel Colvin's, and then to the schoolhouse, until 
the building of the first little brick church in Belle Center, in 1850. 
The Disciple church was organized in 1839, at James Harrod's 
dwelling, with Rev. William Dowling, the Harrods, Patricks, 
Roberts and others, including Mary Cooper, Rebecca Hover, Nancy 
Mclntyre and Elizabeth Howell. The services were removed in 
1852 to a schoolhouse, and a year later to their first edifice in Belle 
Center. The Presbyterian church at Belle Center was organized 
December 9, 1852, with Rev. H. R. Price, Elders Samuel Hover and 
J. H. Gill, and twenty-five members, including the Hemphills, Lam- 


berts, Yates, Fattens and other names still familiar in the county. 
The Reformed (or Covenanter's) Presbyterian church was organized 
in Belle Center in 1877, with a membership of thirty-eight. Its 
building, finished in 1879, is still in use. The United Presbyterian 
church is of later date in the town, and has the largest church edifice 
of any congregation there. The First Presbyterian congregation 
rebuilt their church in 1901 ; the Methodist congregation at no great 
interval previous; and the Disciple church (Church of Christ) has 
a very pretty chapel built in 1906, making five edifices to adorn the 
town of today, which has about eleven hundred inhabitants. 

Three of Belle Center's streets are paved with brick laid in con- 
crete, and the rest are well "piked" or macadamized. Smooth cement 
sidewalks lead everywhere, giving the whole town a neat appear- 
ance, and the residence portions are very attractive and well kept. 
A new high school is building this year (1918), and the present 
building now houses the children from nearly all over the township 
of Richland, which has adopted the "consolidated" plan of public 
school administration. 

Belle Center has had a fire department since "before the war" 
(Civil), when it operated with little hand engines. The "volunteer" 
system has been in vogue for the most part, but after being equipped 
with modern engines it was for a time a "paid company." This 
proved less satisfactory than was expected, and some years ago, 
under the present mayor, T. H. Elder, and a representative council, 
a new plan was adopted, with a paid chief and assistant and a vol- 
unteer force, which, owing to the co-operative spirit of Belle Center's 
male population, has shown itself a highly efficient method of dealing 
with the local fire fiend. Every man and boy in the village considers 
himself a fire laddie when the bell rings. No disastrous fires have 
occurred in many years. Water supply for fire fighting is obtained 
from several deep and seemingly inexhaustible wells, which, at 
Belle Center, may be drilled at almost any point. 

From the days when the settlers had to pound their corn in a 
hollowed stump, using a round boulder for a pestle, and on through 
the period when hulled corn and maple syrup was the daintiest dish 
of festive occasions, and johnnycake made of cracked corn did duty 
for the pioneer brides-cake, to the day of the first steam grist mill 
at Belle Center, is a panorama which can only be passed in swift 
review, while its wonderful advancement after the advent of the 
railroad, which opened the rich acres of the northern prairie to the 
world of commerce, shown in the town of today, is a picture less 
romantic but of much more vital interest to the present. There is 
not in the whole Miami valley a locality which surpasses this farm 
country in productiveness, and but few which equal it. The lumber- 
ing industry passed with the steady years of clearing, and the saw- 
mills which once made the wooded districts populous with axemen 
and laborers are a thing of the past, though shipments of logs are 
still noticeable from this point. The old roads of black mud, passa- 
ble only by laying them thick with cross logs, are replaced every- 
where with stone or gravel pikes. The very pikes themselves are 
altering the landscape by depleting the gravel ridges which furnish 
the paving material. But everywhere the fields stand thick with 


corn, wheat, oats and clover, and the highways in harvest time teem 
with wagons and auto-trucks transporting to the warehouses and 
elevators at Belle Center the generous produce of the prairie. Only 
where grain gives way to grazing is difference seen. In addition to 
the sheep, hog and general cattle raising business among the farmers, 
a large number of sheep and lambs are shipped in for fattening, 
nearly ten thousand arriving in September alone of this year (1918). 
This little market ships out more sheep and hogs each year than are 
received by the railroad at any point between Springfield and San- 
dusky. Approximately a half million pounds of wool leave the local 
warehouses every year, the amount being handled, in 1918, by H. J. 
Mack and Harry Noble, in about equal proportion. 

Not only pasturage, but the larger per cent of the vast corn 
crop of this region is consumed in the feeding of sheep, hogs and 
cattle, so that the corn shipments from Belle Center are compara- 
tivefy small, but other grains are sufficient to keep two large ele- 
vator companies busy. One of these is a branch plant of the Keller 
and Gebby company of Bellefontaine, and the other is the Otto 
Polter plant, a local concern. Both receive and distribute not only 
grain and other agricultural products, but lime, cement, and hard 
and soft coal. Local depots of the J. A. Long company and others 
handle large poultry and milk shipments. The Belle Center Lumber 
company is a Peter Kunz plant, but has local stockholders, and a 
local manager, Curtis Brown. The lumber is all shipped from the 
south. Building hardware of all kinds is also handled by the 

Three thriving hardware houses beside this are supported in 
Belle Center — the Harrod, domestic hardware ; Hover & Bridge, suc- 
cessors to Harrod & Hover, domestic and farming hardware, fencing 
and similar items, and T. H. Elder & Son, who handle general hard- 
ware, farming implements, and wagon and buggy parts. 

The business of which Belle Center has a monopoly in the 
county is that of Healy Brothers, wholesale growers of seed corn, and 
buyers and shippers of timothy, clover, alfalfa, oats, barley and rye 
seed. The business was established in 1906, and a farm of two hun- 
dred and fifty acres is devoted entirely to the culture of seven varie- 
ties of sweet corn, the yield being all packed and shipped as seed 
corn. Popcorn seed is also one of the specialties of the firm. All 
kinds of garden seeds are distributed, these coming from eastern 
growers, and from Europe. The alfalfa seed is brought from Mon- 
tana, as this climate does not produce a satisfactory seed harvest, 
but other grains are all from local sources, as well as timothy and 
clover seed. As high as twenty thousand bushels of field seed corn 
are shipped by this firm in a single season. Seed potatoes are in- 
cluded in the business, which requires two large warehouses to 
accommodate it. 

McLean & Fulton have a practical monopoly of the furniture 
and undertaking industry, and are housed in a large and substantial 
brick structure well-adapted to their business. 

The public is supplied with water, as yet, by the old-fashioned 
driven well in the dooryard, but the water is pure and cold. Round- 


head, Hardin county, has united with Belle Center in an independent 
electric light plant. 

Every branch of commerce necessary to the life of a town is 
represented in the village", and its financial interests have been taken 
care of since 1886 by the Bank of Belle Center, established with a 
capital of fifty thousand dollars, and maintained with a surplus of 
equal extent. Its officers are: President, W. B. Ramsey; vice- 
president, D. R. McArthur; cashier, E. W. Ramsey; assistant 
cashier, M. F. Campbell. 

Doctors Banning, Phillips and McNeill represent the medical 
profession, the first-named being still active after a practice of nearly 
half a century. Dr. Banning is the possessor of one of the largest 
privately owned collections of American Indian relics in the state. 
None of them is of Logan county origin, however, with the excep- 
tion of a single skull, which the doctor is positive is that of a v^hite 
man, probably of some early and friendly explorer. His belief is 
founded upon the shape of the skull, and the fact that when exhumed 
— in the Spencer gravel pit, near the McClure farm, there were still 
fragments of a puncheon coffin near it, held together by two wrought 
iron nails, things unknown to Indian economy. The circumstance 
seems also to refute any suspicion that the mound in question may 
have been the work of ancient mound builders. 

The first newspaper attempted in Belle Center was the Weekly 
Paragrapher, which failed for lack of support, about 1880. In 188.3, 
Guy Potter Benton came to Belle Center and started a weekly paper 
called The Herald, engaging a local young man, George Wood 
Anderson, as printer, and Ralph Parlatte, scarcely more than a lad, 
as "devil." These three edited and published a paper that was worth 
while, and set it so firmly on its feet that after a few years, when 
they were called to wider work in the world, they had a paper to sell, 
and it was bought by a man named Long. Long, in turn, sold out 
to L. L. Lemon, who, in 1901, was replaced by C. R. Kring, brought 
here to conduct the paper in the interest of the "Drys" in the great 
agitation of that period. The Voice was started about the same 
time, as an opposition sheet. The fight waxed very fierce, but the 
"Drys" won in the ballot, following the campaign. The heat of the 
controversy was by no means cooled, however. The liquor traffic 
monster was still wriggling its tail, and the campaign had to be 
prolonged in pursuit of blind tigers and boot-legging, the climax 
being reached in the shooting of Robert Young by James Pergrin, 
a reputable citizen and member of the town council. Young recov- 
ered, and Mr. Pergrin was promptly acquitted. The blind tiger 
which Young maintained was several times raided by the women 
of Belle Center, and by citizens, but it was not driven out for some 
time. Young at last removed to Columbus, where, eight years ago, 
he became a convert to Billy Sunday's preaching, and during the 
"wet and dry" campaign of October, 1918, he was a leader among 
the "dry" forces. James Pergrin also went to Columbus, embarking 
in a successful heavy hardware business there, and one of his good 
friends is Robert Young. 

Rev. E. P. Elcock and Rev. Huston, both of whom removed to 


points far distant from Belle Center, were prominent ministers there 
during the prolonged struggle between the liquor faction and those 
opposed to it. Thomas C. Danforth was the mayor of the day. It 
was about 1903, during the closing scenes of the excitement, that 
the present editors and proprietors, J. R. and M. J. Martin (Mr. and 
Mrs. Martin) bought in both local papers and continued their pub- 
lication as the Herald-Voice, a wide-awake paper, and devoted to 
the best interests of the town. Of the three founders of the paper, 
Guy Potter Benton has for years been the president of Vermont 
university; Dr. George Wood Anderson, whose mother still lives at 
Belle Center, is a noted evangelist, and was in Y. M. C. A. service in 
France during the war with Germany; Ralph Parlatte, erstwhile 
printer's devil, and now a famous humorist and lecturer, is editor 
of the Lyceumite, at Chicago. Among other products of its fertile 
countryside — where, they say, the fenceposts must be burned before 
they are set, to keep them from growing — Belle Center mentions 
these three with pardonable pride. 

Huntsville, the trig little capital of McArthur township, lies 
about six miles to the northwest from Bellefontaine, being ap- 
proached from that city by three very direct routes, the Hunts- 
ville pike, which leads also, by a turn to the northeast, toward 
Belle Center, following the route of "Hull's Trace," the Sandusky 
division of the Big Four railway, and the Ohio Electric, which 
maintains one of its local power stations at this point. Connecting 
Huntsville with the towns of the north and east are other pikes, 
on one of which, a half mile to the east of the crossing of the two 
railroads, is all that remains of a once promising little village called 
Cherokee, now only a rural hamlet of ten or a dozen houses. Not 
dead, but sleeping — or a new house was built there only five years 
ago — Cherokee's story is that of being passed by when the rail- 
road chose its right of way, and of slow desertion by the elements 
which had begun to crystallize into a live town. 

When the settling of the northwest territory began, the con- 
ditions were not different from those of all the broad prairie country 
sloping or rolling gently toward the upper Miami river. It was as 
pre-eminently an agricultural land of promise as any part of the 
county, and as little improved. Including the Indian reservation, 
there was no part of it which might not have made either Indian, 
squatter or settler well-to-do had either of the first mentioned been 
inclined to or acquainted with the industrious habits of the latter. 
As it was, the first settlers found the dense forests broken only 
here and there by small clearings barely large enough to yield 
subsistence. The squatter element faded out after the advent of 
real settlers, but few, if any, of them undertaking to follow the 
example of the newcomers. The Indians, transferred to the west, 
left the land about and to the northwest of Indian lake open, and 
after the conversion of the lake into a state reservoir, it became 
in time a circle of pleasure resorts bearing various designations, and 
still favored fishing and hunting grounds, though the hunting is 
not all that it used to be. "O'Connor's Landing" is named for the 
present owner of the farm it is a part of, the original settler of 
which was James Patterson. James Russell was the original owner 


of the land, where "Russell's Point" was established by his son. 
Other localities are known as "Turkey Foot," "Sassafras Point," 
and "Lakeview,' where a town is growing out of the resort, which 
offers exceptional fishing and boating advantages, but which for 
years has been the harbor of the only saloon in Logan county, keep- 
ing the better class of pleasure seekers away from this attractive 
resort, and contaminating a large district with its evil influence. 
However, Lakeview voted itself "dry" in the last statewide elec- 
tion, and this drawback will soon be removed. 

To discover the real beauty of the lake, however, one must 
take the auto hack from Huntsville, and be driven by genial Dick 
Floyd to the Spencer tollgate, and through it to Lake Ridge, the 
delightful retreat created in 1890 by William Clarke, who built a 
pike across the shallows of the lake, converting what had been 
an island into a peninsula, and erected a spacious summer hotel 
facing the original body of Indian lake. The avenue leading to 
the island is lined on either side with wonderful old willows which 
meet far overhead and form what the resorters like to call "lover's 
lane" — but Mr. Clarke says it is the Way to Yesterday — and yes- 
terday it seems when one arrives there, where no sound strikes the 
ear save those of nature, the splash of water under the oars, the 
call of wild birds and the wind in the trees. Attractive little cot- 
tages line the lagoon to the east, and along the drive, which extends 
the length of the ridge, facing the lake and past the hotel, where 
an old-fashioned hospitality awaits the guest. No clock has ever 
ticked in that hotel. "Time," says Mr. Clarke, "was made for 
slaves." The cordial host has "never wet a line in Indian lake," 
either, although he has a fleet of rowboats from which others cast 
their lines. Flocks of domesticated wild geese and ducks are con- 
fined in ample enclosures on the lagoon in the rear of the hotel. 

Near the lake front is a circular Indian mound about twelve 
feet in diameter and flat on top, which seems to point to at least 
temporary occupancy of this country by the mound-builders. The 
mound in question has been carefully preserved, but no investigation 
of its contents has ever been permitted. The resort is lighted by 
nature only (except for kerosene lamps indoors), for the proprietor 
wishes to preserve the atmosphere of rest, for which this place was 
intended. The bass-fishing is a lure to anglers, strong enough to 
draw a crowd of votaries, without the glare of electricity to pro- 
long the day to weariness. Mr. Clarke has made a determined stand 
against John Barleycorn, and no one is permitted to carry to the 
island liquor of any sort for any purpose whatever. 

One of the first sales of land in the section of the county em- 
bracing the lake townships and the Cherokee district was the con- 
veyance, "by title bond," from Duncan McArthur to John and 
Samuel Harrod, of four hundred and fifty acres on Cherokee Man's 
run, which winds in a circuitous channel and empties into the Miami 
just below the lake. Thomas Scott was the first settler to bring 
his family to a home here, but the Harrod families arrived in the 
fall of the same year, 1820. A settler named John Watt came in 
1821 and in 1823 Peter and Samuel Hover made homes near the 
Harrods. Samuel Lease was the next prospector, and he made a 


purchase of land in 1825, but as a settler he was preceded by George 
Hover, who with his wife and eight children came to occupy a tract 
of two hundred acres embracing a large part of the site of Hunts- 
ville. Hugh Bickham settled not far from this tract about the 
same time, and Isaac Cooper came with his wife in 1826, living near 
the Harrods until 1830, when he bought land near the spot where 
the Huntsville cemetery was afterward located. He built there the 
first tannery of the settlement, pursuing his trade for five years, 
when he removed to the vicinity of Lewistown. A second tannery 
was established by Thomas Wishart in what is now Huntsville, not 
long after Cooper's. Adcock Carter came in 1827 to settle on a 
thousand-acre tract acquired by Joseph Carter some years before, 
which embraced Solomon's Town and the famous "twin springs" 
of that place of many legends. The David Wallaces afterward 
owned a part of this land, said to be the locality where Hull's expe- 
dition encamped, and identified by many traces of the pause. All 
was a dense forest except a small clearing where a blockhouse 
stood during the War of 1812. Joseph Wallace came in 1833 with 
his wife and three children, and settled a little to the west of the 
site of Huntsville, and there their descendants still hold title and 
residence. John Shelby, Henry Hover, John Casebolt, and the 
Black, Grabiel and Williams families are also of the early period 
of settlement. About 1835, several important families arrived. 
Kemp G. Carter settled at Cherokee, while to the south of the 
Huntsville site Mr. and Mrs. Abraham Elder and their eight chil- 
dren made a home, and James Steen, John Russell and Thomas Pat- 
terson and others found satisfactory locations. Adan Yearn must 
have come several years earlier, for we find that he built the first 
grist mill on Cherokee Man's run in 1828. John Coulter came from 
Bellefontaine in 1835, and purchased the Isaac Cooper tannery and 
farm, married a daughter of Abraham Elder, and with the family 
they reared became an integral part of the life of this locality, and 
of the county. Of the three sons, James, John and Wood, James 
remained on the home farm, and the others came to Bellefontaine 
where Wood Coulter is still in business. Mrs. J. P. Harbert is a 
daughter of Dr. John Coulter. 

The second grist or flouring mill built on the Cherokee was 
erected by Jonathan Woodward, who came to the Cherokee valley 
in 1836 and purchased from the Mahin heirs a tract of twenty-seven 
acres upon which stood a log cabin and a badly wrecked sawmill. 
Mr. Woodward's wife had formerly been Mrs. Sarah Robinson, and 
came originally from Delaware, while Mr. Woodward was a Penn- 
sylvanian by birth. He also was a practical miller and millwright, 
and the ruined sawmill was repaired at once and in it the lumber 
was sawed for the building of the gristmill. During the long sum- 
mer while the mill and the race or "overshoot" were building, Mrs. 
Woodward cooked the food and baked the bread required to feed 
a torce of twenty men who performed the out-of-door labor. The 
bread was baked several times weekly, in a brick oven. It is there- 
fore to be remarked that Mrs. Woodward helped to build that mill. 
In later years she was rewarded in the possession of the first cook- 
stove brought into that part of the country. As an instance, how- 


ever, of the refinements which even the early settlers transported 
into the wilderness, these strenuous hardships were ameliorated, in 
the Woodward home, by the musical tinkle of an old-time "dul- 
cimer," which is still preserved in the Coulter home at Huntsville. 
The first "organ" brought hither was also in the Woodward home 
— one of the old-fashioned type, with four octagon legs. The mill 
began running in 1839, and sent out the first barrel of flour ever 
shipped from a Cherokee mill. In 1866 the old mill was sold to 
Brown and Douglas, who in turn sold out to James McCormick 
(now, 1918, a very old man of ninety years or thereabouts), who 
still lives at the mill and does a little sawing with the old machinery. 
Anna, a daughter of the Woodwards, married James Coulter, and 
lived on the farm and in Huntsville until 1910, when her husband 
died, after which the family removed to Bellefontaine, where Mrs. 
Coulter and her daughter, Miss Lulu, still reside. Miss Blanche 
Lawson, Mrs. Lyda Baker and Mrs. Maude White, of Bellefontaine, 
are also granddaughters of the Woodwards. 

James Stewart, born in County Tyrone, Ireland, came to 
America and in 1830 settled in the Cherokee district, on a tract of 
six hundred and twenty-five acres of military lands. He built the 
well-remembered Stewart mill in 1836, but he was not himself a 
miller, and his son Samuel conducted the mill from the start, con- 
tinuing through many years, with the help of his sons, to do a large 
and successful flouring business. The story of the Cherokee mills 
would be incomplete without mention of the sawmills which pre- 
ceded and accompanied them during the great clearing period, when 
the population of Logan county flourished as never since in point 
of increase. The loggers and other laborers who flocked to the 
timber districts were a necessary factor, but included a large pro- 
portion of "undesirable citizens," for the greater part transitory, 
but stamping the times with a roughness in great contrast to the 
character of the real settlers. Also it encouraged another industry 
which was in conflict with the ethics of the good people who made 
their homes there. While not the only spot so abused in the county 
at that period, it is with regret that the record is made of a dis- 
tillery to match every one of the Cherokee mills, and that the dis- 
tillers were also settlers. Hugh Bickham built the first, directly 
south of Huntsville. It was a hewn log structure, built early, and 
stood a long time. At the vicinity of the Yearn mill, which had 
passed into the hands of Jacob Anstine, another distillery was built 
in 1845 by Edward Harper, "a quite respectable building," to house 
a disreputable business — which, luckily, "did not pay." It closed 
in 1850. The third, last, and largest was built by William Har- 
land and Henry Anstine. It is claimed in extenuation of these set- 
tlers who catered to the rough element of the lumbering camps and 
at the same time thoughtlessly accomplished the ruin of many gifted 
pioneer sons, that there were few teetotallers then, and also fewer 
positive drunkards. Perhaps the popular mind was not so well 
educated then as now, but the distillers who brought so much sor- 
row and ruin into the fair land of Logan had blunt but eloquent old 
Habakkuk's warning, the same as now. It was doubtless the be- 
ginning of the great fight of later times for a "dry" Logan, when 


the settlers who suffered innocently set their wills to drive out the 
stills. And good was stronger than evil, for the millers, the tan- 
ners, the smiths, the wagon makers, and the honest farmers who 
subdued the prairie, ditched its lowlands, rid it of wild beasts and 
banished the yellow rattlers that made life a terror, scattered their 
flocks and herds among well-tilled fields, and built "underground 
railway stations" where slaves were helped to freedom and hope, 
survived the hosts of John Barleycorn, and their descendants have, 
by the ballot, removed the prophet's curse. 

In all these early days the churches of this territory stood to- 
gether in fighting evil and fostering good. The Presbyterian church 
of Cherokee, organized in 1822, was the first of that creed to be 
formed in Logan county. Its first meetings were held at the home 
of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Scott, who with Mr. and Mrs. Peter Hover, 
Mr. and Mrs. George Hover, Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Hover, Mr. and 
Mrs. Robert Edmiston, Mr. and Mrs. John Watt and Mr. and Mrs. 
James Stover, constituted the entire membership. About 1825 a 
hewn-log meeting house was built at Cherokee, where the settlers 
already seemed inclined to gather, and where, in 1832, Robert 
Edmiston, Dr. Samuel A. Morton and Alexander Thompson laid out 
the town. A second church edifice, built of brick and of ample size, 
was built at Cherokee some years later ; and when that village de- 
clined, it was taken down and rebuilt in Huntsville, being the neat 
and substantial church standing at the present time. The rebuild- 
ing occurred in 1866, and the dedication took place early in 1867. 
The Methodists were the second religious body to form, a small 
"class" being organized following a series of meetings held during 
the summer of 1823 in the cabin of Solomon Richards, about a half 
mile southwest of Cherokee. So far as known, the families of Rich- 
ards, Pendergress and Lease constituted the membership. For a 
few years the meetings continued from one to the other of these 
homes until the membership had so increased that a meeting house 
was a necessity, and a small frame chapel was erected at Cherokee. 
This was in use until Huntsville had grown to be a town of con- 
siderable size, in 1866, when a new Methodist church was built 
there, replacing the old frame at Cherokee. The United Presby- 
terians organized in Cherokee in October, 1831, under Rev. S. Wil- 
son, of the Miami Presbytery. The society comprising the congre- 
gation were the families of Abraham Elder, A. Templeton, W. 
Langhead, David and Peter Dow, James and Isabella Hays, John 
McElree and James Patterson. Rev. James Wallace was the first 
pastor, continuing in service until 1861. Their first building was a 
brick, situated in Cherokee, and the work of the organization was 
directed largely against the widespread Sabbath desecration and 
drunkenness, as indeed were the efforts of all the churches. At 
Lewistown, a few miles west, a body of Indians lived, and all of 
these earliest churches endeavored to do some missionary work 
among them. The United Presbyterian congregation moved to 
Huntsville at a later date, and built a frame chapel there, the old 
brick at Cherokee being used for a time as a woolen factory. In 
1833 the Rev. J. B. Johnston organized the Reformed Presbyterian 
(or Covenanters') church at North wood, with Abraham Patterson, 


Thomas, James and Henry Fulton, Robert Scott and John Young 
and their wives as members. They met first in the schoolhouse, 
then in a log chapel which they built on the east bank of the Miami 
river (Middle Fork), near the cemetery. In 1840 this was discarded 
for a little brick church which they erected near by. In later years 
a large frame church was built in the village of Northwood, and 
this is still in good repair (1918). In 1847 Rev. J. B. Johnston 
originated the project which resulted in the establishment at North- 
wood of a classical and scientific school, under the auspices of the 
Reformed Presbyterian church. It became an accomplished fact, 
under the name of Geneva college, the college building still stand- 
ing in good condition just off the township line road, with the 
dormitory building at its left. The latter has become a dwelling, 
and the Hall is vacant except for a small repair shop for buggies 
and wagons in the rear. A female seminary was added to the in- 
stitution. Rev. Johnston discreetly placing this building, also of 
good brick construction, nearly half a mile away from the Hall, so 
that the lads and lassies should not distract one another from the 
pursuit of classical learning. By 1852 the institution was in full 
swing, and a perusal of the old catalogue not only brings to light 
nearly every prominent name in the county, but includes names 
from several far corners of the earth. The isolation of the college 
from transportational facilities at last became a drawback, and about 
1878 or 1879, it was decided by the Synod to remove it to Beaver 
Falls, Pennsylvania, where it has continued a useful career as col- 
lege and theological seminary. The "Female Seminary" at the 
fork of the road to the east has been a ruin for a long time, being 
partly torn down to provide brick for other buildings, and since then 
carried away brick by brick for souvenirs, and, it is said, to repair 
the neighborhood chimneys. A United Presbyterian church was 
organized at Northwood, also, and during its first struggling days 
was given the use of the Reformed chapel and of Geneva Hall for 
its meetings until 1866, when they built a chapel of their own. The 
pastorates of Rev. W. H. Jefifers, J. W. Taylor and Rev. Alexander 
Smith, which ended in 1879 covered the period of greatest growth. 
The rural churches are not so well attended now as formerly, the 
automobile having so altered rural family life that church attend- 
ance centralizes in the larger town rather than clings to small and 
feeble country organizations. Time will tell whether this is better 
than the old way. Northwood itself is like a house put in order for 
the Sabbath, and the brooding quiet which is its distinguishing 
characteristic today is very like to that of slumber. 

Immediately after the "Mad River and Lake Erie" railroad was 
surveyed, and its route determined, the village of Huntsville was 
platted by Alexander Harbison (county surveyor in 1846), upon 
lands owned by George M. Hover and Thomas Wishart, and when, 
in 1847, the first train drew into the station, the town was there to 
meet it. Thomas Wishart had built a brick house in the plat as 
early as 1844, and the development of the village was rapid. Buell 
& Dodson put up a brick store building in 1848, the first store in 
the town. During the year 1847 Samuel Harrod had erected a frame 
hotel near the depot. It was destroyed by fire in 1850, but at once 


rebuilt. John Bimel next built the second brick dwelling, and in 
1852 the "Grand Central," successor to the first Harrod hotel, was 
opened. This was afterward owned and operated by H. P. Ingalls 
for many years. The old taverns of stage coach days at Cherokee 
being deserted, their contingent of idlers flocked to Huntsville and 
the cellar of the Grand Central gained a wide reputation. The post- 
office established at Cherokee in 1830 was removed to Huntsville in 
1850. H. Shafer, once a merchant of the deserted village, erected 
a commodious frame building at Huntsville and transferred his busi- 
ness thither. He also built a house which John Bimel afterward 
purchased, enlarging and fitting it up as a hotel. It is still doing 
duty in this line, but the bar and the "cellar" have long ago van- 
ished, with the saloons. General retail business in all lines sprang 
up and succeeded, and in 1865 Huntsville became an incorporated 
town, electing its first mayor, Sidney B. Foster, the next spring. 
William Beatty, William T. Herron, J. H. Harrod, A. Bartholomew 
and Josiah Carr composed the "city" council and David and Joseph 
Carr were recorder and treasurer respectively. The regular village 
industries of harness making, blacksmithing and carpentry, as well 
as shoemaking shops, multiplied. The population in 1880 had grown 
to five hundred, around which figure it hovered for some time, 
falling in 1910 to 338, but it is now once more on the high tide of 
prosperity, and may fairly claim five hundred inhabitants. Those 
who should know best call it "the best town of its size in the 
state." The quality of its citizenship is not surpassed, and its public 
spirit and patriotism is one hundred per cent. It has three churches, 
the Presbyterian, Charles Marston, pastor; Methodist Episcopal, 
Rev. William Reves, pastor; and the United Presbyterian, Rev. 
J. H. T. Gordon (newly elected representative to the state legisla- 
ture), pastor. All are in prime working condition. The physicians 
are Drs. J. S. Montgomery, G. W. Jones and F. A. Richardson. 
Huntsville, which has come to the front in giving everything else 
to the work of the war, did not have to send her doctors, who are 
all outside the age limit of service, and consequently spared to the 
service of home people. G. W. Carder is present mayor of the 
town. Huntsville has no public water system, but the water which 
is furnished by wells is of the same excellence as elsewhere in the 
county. Natural gas is still comparatively abundant, and the Trac- 
tion company furnish electricity at a reasonable rate, so that the 
town is brilliantly lighted and many make use of electricity for 
domestic motor service, and for hot plates for cooking. There is an 
independent telephone exchange, housed in a neat building next to 
the artistic little headquarters of the Huntsville Banking company. 
The latter institution is an unincorporated bank, but organized in 
1907 under the state laws, and subject to state examination. Its 
capital stock is $20,000, its surplus, $8,000, while deposits and loans 
run about $80,000 and $62,000 respectively. The organizing chairman 
was G. M. Hover, at that time mayor of the village. The first presi- 
dent was S. L. Horn ; vice-president, C. C. Cook ; and the cashier 
for the first ten years was F. F. Myers. Dr. J. S. Montgomery was 
the secretary. The present oflEicials are: S. L. Horn, president; 
T. A. McLees, vice-president ; Harry E. Clapper, cashier. The bank 


is doing great service to the community in localizing capital and 
advancing the commercial interests of the town. 

The I. C. Miller elevator at Huntsville is connected with the 
Keller & Gebby plant of Bellefontaine. It has a capacity of 
thirty thousand bushels storage, and shipped, during last year, 
about one hundred thousand bushels of grain, oats, wheat, corn, rye, 
and barley. Wool is also shipped, some feed milling is done, and 
coal, tile, salt, cement and similar materials are handled. Hay is 
another important export. The Sandusky division of the Big Four 
R. R. ships out of Huntsville yearly about sixty carloads of live- 
stock, and the Ohio Electric carries large quantities of milk both 
north and south, from this point. There is up to date garage service, 
locally, and every branch of retail trade is in prosperous condition. 
Harvey Monteith operates a feed mill and coal depot. There is no 
manufacturing done in the town, which is important chiefly as a 
market for a large and productive farm district. 

The history of Huntsville newspapers is not long, but that is 
because the Huntsville News has had an uninterrupted career. It 
was preceded only by the Gazette (started long ago, by a Mr. 
Rupert), which was too short-lived to remember. Omar L. Wilson 
established the News, coming from Washington, D. C, to which city 
he returned, selling out to Mr. and Mrs. E. M. Day, who came to 
Huntsville about 1894, Mr. Day as superintendent of schools. The 
editors and proprietors are active at both type case and editorial 
desk, and the result is a lively little sheet which does credit to 
everybody concerned, and advances the material interests of the 
town. Huntsville has no better friends than its editors. 

Huntsville still retains a number of the old names familiar to 
local history, numbering among its citizens of today Mrs. Wallace 
Templeton, Emrick Miller, Mrs. Flora Ingalls, who was a Miss 
Bimel, Mrs. Henrietta Carr, who was Miss Dewey, Mrs. Ada Wil- 
liamson, daughter of J. H. Harrod, Evanses, Dulaneys, Bimels, 
Coulters, and others. 

The handsome new township school stands at the eastern edge 
of the village, and has the distinction of being the first of the new 
centralized schools to open its doors to the children of the entire 
district, rural and urban. It requires eleven vans to transport the 
pupils to and from the sessions. 

Lewistown, three or four miles south of the Lewistown reser- 
voir (by statutory enactment now renamed Indian Lake Park), is 
the central point of historic interest in the upper Miami region, 
lying a half mile west of the McPherson section, given Col. McPher- 
son by the Indians, with the "Nancy Stewart section" about one and 
a half miles to the southwest, all three points being north of the 
Treaty line, and within the later reservation boundary on the east. 
The removal of the Indians by the new treaty of 1832 removed also 
these imaginary lines and opened the Miami country to white settle- 

With the exception of old Polly Keyser, James McPherson and 
John Mcllvain, the last Indian agent, a white squatter or two were 
the only white persons ever known to have lived in this territory. 
Immediately upon the opening of these lands for sale, Major Henry 



Hanford, a native of New Canaan, Connecticut, and an officer of 
the War of 1812, purchased from the government (under the admin- 
istration of Andrew Jackson) a tract of six hundred and forty acres, 
the land including the Indian village and the headquarters of Chief 
John Lewis, which stands on the elevation south of the present 
village, beyond "Bad Axe" creek. The Hanford family were the 
first permanent settlers of this locality, but they were followed very 
soon by others who came with increasing rapidity, hailing, for the 
greater part, from the older Ohio settlements, with a few from Vir- 
ginia, among the latter being Mrs. Plum and her five sons and 
daughters, and Michael Kearns. 

Isaac Cooper moved hither in 1832 from the Huntsville settle- 
ment, and Abram Cherry came from Clark county in 1833. William 
Lowry and John Renick purchased large tracts of forest land north 
of Lewistown, and John Hogge, Alexander Trout, Samuel Brown, 
Daniel Wagoner, George Berry, the Dearduff brothers and the Staf- 
ford and McCauley families were early arrivals whose names still 
survive in the community of today. 

Major Hanford took possession of the old log house which had 
been the headquarters of Chief Lewis, and tore away all but that 
part of the structure which had been built of hewn logs under the 
direction of the British allies of the Indians in pre-Revolutionary 
times. This part, two stories in height, had been lathed and plas- 
tered in imitation of white men's dwellings, and the primitive car- 
pentry is still to be noted where the later mortar put on by Major 
Hanford has fallen from the crude lathing. It is told that, at their 
first attempt to plaster the building, the Indians applied the mortar 
to the outside. Major Hanford added an extension of more than 
equal size and enclosed the whole in a sheathing of clapboards, an 
enormous chimney and fireplace in the central wall giving strength 
to the structure, which was refinished inside and made a commo- 
dious farmhouse which is standing today, though in somewhat un- 
stable condition. The original log part is believed to be the oldest 
building in Ohio. More recently a cottage was attached to the 
original building, where the residents of latter years make their 
home. This took the place of the ancient "lean to" where poor 
Polly Keyser drudged for the lazy though friendly Lewis, and where 
the animals used to be housed at night to keep them safe from 
wolves. In the upper story of the council house the floor still shows 
the stains where the blood of animals dripped when hung up for 
skinning. Many interesting relics were found in and around the 
old house, which are preserved by the family. 

In 1835 Major Hanford had the village of Lewistown (named 
in honor of the old chief) surveyed and platted, on a twenty-five 
acre tract. Three streets, William, Main and Elbridge, were pro- 
jected at right angles to another three. Council, Centre and Hanford, 
and the unusual feature (at that date) was a system of alleys which 
bore the names of various Indian chiefs. 

The first store in Lewistown was built and conducted by Major 
Hanford, who also kept the first tavern, and upon the establishment 
of a postoffice at his store in 1839, he became the first postmaster. 
His son-in-law, Elijah Brunk, built the first dwelling — a log cabin 


— in the village. The land for the first schoolhouse was donated by 
the founder of the town in 1833, to be used for educational purposes 
only, and to revert to his heirs when abandoned by the school trus- 
tees as a school ground. It has been in continuous use until the 
recent building of the now consolidated high school at the farther 
side of the town. A Connecticut man named Conley was Lewis- 
town's first shoemaker. 

The Miami river is too slow a stream at this part to have fur- 
nished much encouragement for the old-fashioned pioneer water 
mill. "Inky" creek is the largest stream above the elbow bend on 
the east side, while "Bad Axe" is scarcely more than a brook, which 
rises in a pair of springs about two miles easterly from the village 
and winds prettily through a narrow valley. On this stream, in 
1835, E. G. Hanford built a small mill which served the pioneer needs 
for a few years, Hanford, Stamats and McCauley's steam sawmill 
at the edge of the village soon supplanting it with a grist milling 
attachment. A more modern steam sawmill was built by Rood and 
Clay in 1873, and at present E. B. Miller operates a large sawmill, 
shipping many carloads of oak bridge planking and walnut logs each 
year, as well as other varieties of lumber in the rough. There are 
living in the upper Miami valley in Logan county today about one 
hundred descendants of Col. Crawford, who was so cruelly mur- 
dered at the upper Sandusky council in the troublous times before 
the savages were subdued. Col. Crawford was a contemporary of 
Gen. Washington, and his daughter Sally married Major William 
Harrison. Nancy, the daughter of the Harrisons, married Daniel 
McKinnon, and their son, Judge William Harrison McKinnon, mar- 
ried Kitty Foley of Clarke county. Dr. B. F. McKinnon, the son 
of Judge and Mrs. McKinnon, married Charlotte, the daughter of 
Major Hanford, and their home was a gift from the bride's father, 
being the same house that has for a long time been known as the 
Price hotel. There their daughter, Harriet, was born, and from it 
Dr. McKinnon went into the United States Medical corps, the first 
volunteer of the Civil war from Lewistown. Harriet McKinnon 
married D. A. Hamer, and their son, Gale B. Hamer, was a captain 
in the Signal corps in France, serving the United States in the war 
with Germany, while their daughter, Helen Hanford, is Mrs. Harry 
Price. James B. McKinnon, a son of Daniel and Nancy Harrison 
McKinnon, settled two miles south of Lewistown, and has three 
descendants of the name, Milton McKinnon, who lives in Bellefon- 
taine ; J. T. McKinnon, who still runs the farm, and Miss Irene 
McKinnon, who for the last fourteen years has resided in Lewis- 
town. Members of the Plum family are also Crawford descendants, 
and numerous genealogical chains might be given connecting the 
people of the Miami district with the brave old scout and soldier, 
but these must suffice. 

The church history of Lewistown is confined to that of the Prot- 
estant Methodist denomination, which was organized, in a log house 
on the farm of Gabriel Banes, by Rev. John B. Lucas (of Springfield 
circuit), with Mr. Banes and his wife, Sarah Banes; Mrs. Mary 
Harrison, Josiah and Catherine McKinnon, Mrs. Catherine Smith 
and her daughter Mary, Mrs. Shade and Mrs. Sally Ann Plum, whose 



husband, Jonathan Plum, afterward became a member. James B. 
McKinnon and his wife, Elizabeth, of Pleasant Hill, united in 1837, 
and also Miss Susan Plum, afterward Mrs. McLaughlin. Mr. and 
Mrs. William Black came the same year, Mr. Black being the first 
"class leader." The first minister was Rev. John Bell. The meet- 
ings were removed in 1847 to the old schoolhouse, afterward occu- 
pied as a dwelling by Jacob Kraus. In 1852, Rev. Reuben M. Dalby 
and Rev. John J. Geer, ardent temperance workers, were instru- 
mental in breaking up a vile drinking den in Logansville. In 1853 
a church was built. Major Hanford donating ground for the purpose. 
In 1868 Isaac and Jonathan Plum purchased a parsonage and gave 
it to the church. A great revival in 1875 caused remarkable church 
growth. A fine bell was purchased and hung in 1879, which has 
been transferred to the tower of the handsome new church which 
now stands on the old site. The original chapel was moved to 
another site, and is now the shop of the village blacksmith. Noah 
Miller, Harmon Trout and William Plum are some of the older 
members of the congregation. Miss Irene McKinnon is the class 
leader, and the present pastor, Rev. D. L. Custis, is now in the 
fourth year of local service. The earlier facts of this sketch are 
gleaned from the hand-written history of James B. McKinnon, set 
down by him from memory, in 1881, the last year of his life. 

When the railroad (T. & O. C.) was built through Lewistown 
it opened a new era of prosperity, and something like a boom oc- 
curred. An elevator was flung up in haste by an outside speculator, 
and numerous improvements, some permanent and some quite the 
reverse, were made. But the prosperity was real, and the inadequate 
elevator has been replaced by a new one, owned by C. E. Dalrymple, 
which has a capacity of fifty thousand bushels storage, and handles 
all sorts of feed, flour, lime, salt, cement, tile and coal. About sixty 
carloads of grain — wheat, oats, corn, barley and rye-— are shipped 
out annually. Corn is the heaviest crop in this locality, but rnost 
of it is kept at home for feeding stock. Sixty carloads of hay is a 
modest statement of that export, and about thirty carloads of hogs, 
sheep and cattle. Dairy farming is an important industry here, and 
great quantities of milk are transported by motor truck service and 
by railroad both east to Bellefontaine and west to St. Marys. D. A. 
Hamer has a fine herd of blooded Jerseys on the old Hanford farm. 

There is a spot near Bad Axe creek at the edge of the village, 
where in 1862 a German, Jacob Westenhaver, established a distil- 
lery, which was an unwelcome addition to the few industries, and 
was given good riddance some years later when the government 
confiscated the property because of failure to comply with the law. 

The first doctors of Lewistown were James Morehead, Lewis 
(a suicide). Dr. Pollock and Dr. B. F. McKinnon, a physician of 
more than ordinary ability. Dr. J. L. Forsythe, who died in the 
summer of 1918, Drs. Makemson and Heffner, who have removed to 
Bellefontaine, have been later members of the profession. 

Col. McPherson, after the death of his first wife, married Dolly, 
a daughter of John Tullis, sr. They had one daughter, who at the 
time of her death, December 9, 1918, was the oldest resident of Lew- 
istown— -Mrs. Robert ("Aunt Martha") Miller, who was a member 


of the Bellefontaine chapter of the D. A. R. and the only actual 
daughter of a Revolutionary soldier in the county. After Col. Mc- 
Pherson's death, Dolly Tullis McPherson married James Bennett, 
an early local settler, and reared a second family of children. 

Lewistown has never incorporated, and has a population of 
only two hundred and eighty, although it appears larger. Business 
is flourishing, with two large general stores, the Price and the Zol- 
man stores, built in 1909; two good hardware stores, a garage and 
machine shop ; an independent telephone exchange, a fire depart- 
ment, and a bank as solid as can be found. 

The Farmers' bank, established in 1910, is not an incorporated 
institution, but was organized under the same plans drafted for the 
Huntsville bank. The capital stock is $20,000 and the deposits are 
$75,000 or more. The committee of organization were : W. H. 
Plum, I. M. Plum, B. F. Howard, J. T. McKinnon, Charles Black, 
Frank Howard, Noah Brunner, Noah Miller, T. M. Cooper, Mrs. 
Elnora Price, Anna Huber, D. A. Huber, John Dunson, Lytle Plum, 
and A. Clarence McKinnon. President, W. H. Plum; first vice- 
president, J. T. McKinnon; second vice-president, Charles Black; 
first cashier, F. S. Kiser ; cashier for the past seven years and present, 
T. M. Cooper. 

On thse west side of the Miami in this region, the settlement 
was later and slower, the land there being very flat and, until drained 
artificially, too wet for farming except on the low "ridges" between 
the winding streams, which form the routes for nearly all of the 
roads. The land is black loam and clay, productive and now easily 
farmed, but less interesting to the eye than the eastern and central 
parts of the county. Bloom Centre is the location of the steam 
mill built in 1878 by A. Connolly; a drain tile factory of the same 
date ; of two churches, a store and the usual civic developments that 
can be expected of a village remote from any railroad. As the centre 
of a large farming district, it has its place in the world of produce 
and trade. ' ' 

The early days, when the land was still thickly covered with 
forest, were fraught with difficulty and danger until a much later 
date than the older parts of Logan county, but the struggle was a 
much shorter one, for the improved methods of the middle of the 
century were within reach, and good roads soon connected these 
late settlers with their neighbors. There does not seem, at present, 
any prospect of urban growth on that side of the Miami. 

The Muchinippi (or Wolf) creek, about which the Seneca In- 
dians congregated in the Reservation days, rises in Auglaize county. 
Brandywine and Rum creeks have names suggestive of things which 
are not written down, although the first store "over there" was 
stocked chiefly with "whiskey, tobacco and tea." To do the pro- 
prietor justice, however, the character of his stock was soon changed, 
and the store became a prosperous and proper one. 

The state dam, built in 1850, has made a beautiful lake of the 
miasmatic swamp lands surrounding the original Indian lake, where, 
among the pleasure resort settlements, Lakeview is developing into 
a real town, which has a bank of its own, good stores, and a small 
newspaper and other evidences of community life. 


That large tract of the county comprising Harrison and Union 
townships and extending into Miami township, while it is quite 
without towns, contains some of the most prominent points of in- 
terest to be seen, all of them being easily reached by excellent roads 
and pikes. Leaving the expanse of beautiful farms and grazing 
grounds which lie in the valleys of the northwestern creeks, the 
observer enters an equally fine district, that where the McPherson 
farm was a central point in the blockhouse days, and which was 
afterward a trading centre for many years. The McPherson farm 
was purchased long ago by Logan county for an infirmary, and the 
present building, which is one of the most perfect institutions of 
its nature in Ohio, was erected under the administration of E. D. 
Campbell, R. S. Kerr, and C. C. Harshfield, the board of directors. 
Mr, and Mrs. George Kennedy are and have been superintendent 
and matron, respectively, for fifteen years, and under the excellent 
management of Mr. Kennedy the farm is self-sustaining. Fifty 
inmates are housed there at this date (1918) and a more comfortable 
home for the aged and friendless is certainly not provided anywhere 
at public expense. On the front lawn, at the west side of the en- 
trance, is pointed out the spot where stood the famous blockhouse, 
which assured protection to settlers and Indians from the foe of 
1812. The old family burial plot remains undisturbed on the in- 
firmary farm, and in it. Col. McPherson's grave may be seen, marked 
with a simple headstone. The Buckongehalas creek flows in a curve 
around the grounds before turning southward toward DeGraff and 
the Miami. East of the creek lies the farm of Louisa Sullivan Mc- 
Pherson, widow of Aaron Hartley McPherson, the colonel's grand- 
son. A mile or more west, on the road to Lewistown, is situated 
the beautiful farm on which George Wood Anderson is developing 
an enormous poultry plant. House and barns are attractively built 
and situated, and beyond them looms a hennery large enough for a 
township house, which promises to be a veritable palace for the 
breeding and care of fine poultry. 

On the road from Bellefontaine to Logansville, a mile directly 
west from the courthouse, the Children's home spreads hospitable 
wings, as if calling homeless children to its shelter. About forty 
years ago, in the old brick house on Main street, Bellefontaine, which 
now does duty as a depot for the Ohio Electric railroad, lived Mr. 
and Mrs. Joseph Chambers. Mr. Chambers was a merchant, his 
business occupying the same situation as the Wissler drygoods store 
of the present. Mr. and Mrs, Chambers had children of their own 
(Julius Chambers of New York being a son), and the house was not 
large; yet they found room in it for children who were bereft of 
their natural homes by poverty, unkindness or disaster, and at one 
time there were no less than sixteen children being cared for under 
that roof. Mr. Chambers endeavored upon occasions to interest the 
county at large in the project of a children's home, as Mrs. Chambers' 
strength was being overtaxed with the self-imposed burden. At 
length the movement took hold of the public mind, and the farm 
west of the city was purchased, the house already upon it answering 
a temporary purpose as residence during the building of a substan- 
tial one of brick, which was completed about 1885- The old house is 


still retained in good condition and can be used for semi-occasional 
overflow, or as a hospital in the event of an epidemic — which to date, 
happily, has never visited the home. The building of 1885, though 
much more pretentious than the present one, as well as larger, ac- 
commodating one hundred children, was not as well planned, nor 
as homelike. It was destroyed by fire, May 14, 1907, and replaced 
the following year, during the administration of Mr. and Mrs. Lewis 
Curl, of Bellefontaine, who entered the work in 1903 and retained 
the position until the winter of 1912-13, being then succeeded by 
Mr. and Mrs. C. C. Harshfield. After five years, in the spring of 
1918, the Harshfields resigned, and Mr. and Mrs. Charles F. Hill 
took charge in June, as superintendent and matron. The home now 
accommodates fifty boys and girls at most, but is scarcely ever filled 
to capacity. Few children remain beyond the age of fifteen, when 
they become old enough to win a home by their own efforts. Very 
young babies make but extremely short stays here, as homes are 
nearly always waiting for them. During the last year the youngest 
babe in the institution was eight months old, but at the date No- 
vember, 1918, there were no babies in the house, and but thirty-four 
children, boys and girls all told. The average age is from eight to 
twelve years. This is, incidentally, a very good answer to the 
sometimes heard question, "Why is not. the farm self-sustaining, 
like the infirmary?" The building is excellent, and the situation all 
that could be desired, but there are crying needs at the institution 
which it is to be hoped will receive early attention. Superintendents 
and matrons for the last five years have worked under distinct dis- 
advantages in the matters of insufficient help and inadequate pro- 
vision for upkeep of the house and furnishings, and antiquated light 
and water systems. The farm is too small to produce revenues suf- 
ficient for the support of so large a family. Two governesses teach, 
manage the dormitories, mend, and have general oversight of the 
recreation rooms, for children of both sexes from infancy to eighteen. 
Miss Ovy Foster has charge of the boys and their dormitory in the 
east wing, and Miss Helen Dickeson of the girls and the littlest boys 
in the west. With run-down equipment these estimable ladies are 
overworked. A cook is the remainder of the inadequate retinue 
with which Mr. and Mrs. Hill are making "home" for the children. 
There is, however, an atmosphere of genuine kindness in the place, 
and under a liberal system of discipline the boys and girls alike 
accord a smiling obedience to every direction, and help with the work 
to the best of their limited ability. With such willing minds, the 
necessary financial help should make this home ideal, and certainly 
these little ones, dependent through no fault of their own, should not 
be grudged the same advantages as those of city schools. And of 
course Logan county will see to that. 

Southwest of the Children's home, in the basin of Blue Jacket 
creek, lies a beautiful little sheet of water known as Silver lake, 
which was for many years a pleasure resort for picnics, boating, 
fishing, and, though very cold, for bathing. The lake is fed by 
springs, and in the center a plummet line has never found bottom. 
The tiny beach on the south shore is of white marl, and the marshy 
ground at the north end is marl, also. The lake and surroundings 


are now the property of the Y. M. C. A. of Columbus, Ohio, and a 
summer camp for boys is to be established there. 

Fully a dozen clear lakes of varying size lie within this southern 
territory, draining, for the greater number, into McKee's creek, or 
into Stony creek, farther west. The most interesting, however, are 
the "Twin lakes," belonging to the Blue Jacket channel, lying one on 
either side of the Carlyle pike, which passes through the property of 
the brothers Anson and Andrew Carter — who, although twins, are 
not the origin of the name borne by these pretty morainic pools, 
concerning which there is a mournful legend of the old Indian days. 
The highway, which leads southwest from Bellefontaine, was once 
an Indian trail, and at this pleasant locality an Indian chieftain dwelt 
with his motherless daughters, two maidens of great beauty. As was 
the custom, the chieftain went away on the annual hunt, leaving 
his daughters safe in their tepees. Two or three weeks later, re- 
turning from the expedition laden with the spoils of the forest, he 
watched for the joyous greetings of the maidens as he came down 
the trail. But they did not come. And when he came to the place 
he found only the ashes of his camp, while on either side of the trail 
lay the slain bodies of his children. Broken with grief, the old 
chieftain buried each where she lay, and spent the brief remainder 
of his life weeping over their graves. When at last his tribal fol- 
lowers sought him, nothing was found of their chief except the two 
crystal pools where he had wept his life away. 

Seriously, these great springs are believed to be links in a chain 
connecting the vanished lake of "Round prairie" with the creek 
to the northwest. Round prairie, the small but obstinate swamp 
which refused to respond to drainage, and which had to be filled 
with the timber from twenty or more acres of heavy woodland, in 
order to build the railroad in a straight line across it, lies a little 
more than a mile east of Twin lakes, but, contrary to "auld wives* 
tales," there is no subterranean channel leading thither from it, 
through which little fishes swim. If there are fish in the stagnant 
water of the low spots, the best adviceg. ascribe their presence there 
to water birds as carriers. Dokes' and Black lakes are not as 
large as Silver lake, nor have they the same attraction, but they 
are good fishing grounds, and are interesting and pleasant features 
of the landscape. Among the other pretty lakes, bearing the orig- 
inal names of the estates on which they lie, are McCracken's and 
Newell's, and others. 

As if to make up for the sparsity of towns in the territory just 
discussed, the southwest quarter of Logan county boasts two thriv- 
ing towns scarcely three miles apart, DeGraff, on the east side of 
the Miami river, a half mile above the bend, and Quincy, on the 
southern side of the same river, about two miles below the bend, 
while about two miles north of DeGraff is Logansville, projected 
before either of the preceding towns, and located in the center of an 
excellent wheat and corn growing country, watered in the eastern 
part by Buckongehalas creek, which also afforded power for mills 
in early days. 

Robert Dickson and James Moore, who arrived from the south 
in 1809, were the earliest settlers to locate in this vicinity. Mr. 


Moore afterward built the first mill, about 1819-20, on the west 
bank of the Miami, supplementing it soon after by a sawmill, both 
of which were of great assistance to the settlement, and were in prac- 
tical use for a long period. The Mathews, Means, Pipers, Ellis and 
McMullen families are said to have been all who arrived before the 
year 1820. Only the Dicksons, Moores, Mathews and Meanses 
came before 1812, but being large families, they made a noticeable 
group. One of the government blockhouses of 1812 was erected 
about a mile east of the site of Logansville for their protection. In 
1825 Moore built a distillery which for fifteen years put the corn 
of the settlement to the poorest use ever made of that grain. Thomas 
Dickson built a tannery in 1826, and every cabin was a tavern for 
the entertainment of the traveler, until John Dickson and Joseph 
Davidson opened public taverns at Logansville in 1835 and 1837, 
the town having been platted in 1827, The first real road in the 
district was cut in 1830 from the site of DeGraff through Logans- 
ville and north to Bloom Centre, crossing the Miami river near 
Logansville at what is now known as the Moore bridge. A road of 
later construction is the pike leading west through Logansville 
from Bellefontaine, the Miami bridge at this point being one of the 
first modern bridges to be built across the stream in this county. A 
live little community gathered at the new village, and it might have 
become the leading town of the Miami district, had not the rail- 
roads chosen the more southerly route, which inevitably drew the 
center of population away from Logansville and gave rise to the 
lower towns. Religious history in the Logansville district dates 
from 1815, with a series of meetings conducted from cabin to cabin 
by the "New Light" or Christian denomination until about 1824, 
when the families of the first four settlers united and built a log 
chapel in what soon after became the site of Logansville. A few 
years later the Presbyterians organized, and, with the Christians, 
erected a neat frame church which served them both until 1876, at 
which time a substantial and churchly edifice was built, and the old 
frame was converted into a grange hall. The Methodist Episcopal 
denomination also organized and built a log church in Logansville 
previous to the Presbyterians, but through deaths and removals 
the congregation dwindled and the old chapel was allowed to fall 
into decay. The United Brethren were a later growth. 

Of the settlement of the southwest, Jeremiah Stansbury and his 
two sons were the pioneers, arriving in 1805. In 1808 the Makem- 
son brothers, John, Thomas and Andrew (who brought his wife, 
while the two first were unmarried), and Benjamin Schooler fol- 
lowed. Like most of the Miami settlers they were from Kentucky. 
William Lee came later in the same year, and Samuel Black also 
settled on the east shore of the lake which bears his name. The 
Blacks were of Irish descent. Philip Mathews came in 1809 with 
a family of four sons, who was a valuable asset ; and one of the most 
noted of the several Moore families settled in the district about the 
same time. James Shaw came in 1810. Settlement in the south- 
west, though it began as early as elsewhere, was slow, many reasons 
uniting to account for the fact. There were no roads, and few 
trails ; much of the land was swamp prairie, which, apparently ad- 


vantageous for immediate farming (there being no timber to cut), 
did not bear out the hopes it raised. Even though the settlers per- 
sisted in planting, clouds of blackbirds descended on the fields and 
ate up the seed before it could be covered. Nearly all the settlers 
were men of small means, who came to carve their fortunes, and 
had little to bring with them. Malarial and miasmatic conditions 
prevailed. Dogs were more numerous than stock, and were needed 
for protection from wild beasts and pests. A great deal of the land 
had been bought up by speculators who kept it from the market. 
"Every man for himself" appears to have been the rule of the trail 
for some time. The family of Samuel Black endured terrible hard- 
ships in their first years of pioneering, escaping starvation during 
the "lean winters" by catching fish from the little lake. Wild pigeon 
roosts were a feature of all the southern border lands, and these, with 
wild turkeys, which could be trapped by pioneer devices learned in 
part from the Indians, aided in keeping the gaunt gray wolf of 
hunger from many a cabin door, until after the last real wolf was 
banished or slain. 

The Indians had for the greater part removed from this vicinity 
before the time of Tecumseh's threat in 1811, when Simon Kenton 
averted battle by his bold diplomacy. At Oldtown, the village of the 
friendly Indians, situated about a mile or so above the mouth of 
Stony creek where the warlike braves had gathered, a blockhouse 
was erected for the settlers' safety, notwithstanding the noisy 
"peace celebration" which followed the departure of Tecumseh's 
band. Nevertheless this very locality was a gathering point for 
pioneers, and in spite of all drawbacks, hardy enterprise conquered 
the land. Jeremiah Stansbury built a mill on Stony creek, the work 
occupying nearly four years, owing to natural difiiculties, and the 
lack of help. When finished, it was leased to John Provolt, who 
had operated it but a few months, when it was destroyed by fire, a 
dire calamity to the settlers, who had no means of grinding their 
corn nearer than Springhill, across the southern county line. Be- 
tween 1820 and 1828 the Newmans, Nicholses, Cannons, Kresses 
and Spellmans settled at various points, and probably within these 
dates came John Leach, from Kentucky ; James R. Baldwin, from 
Virginia, who located at the site of Quincy ; John Saylor, who set up 
a store near the Champaign county line; Thomas Turner, who 
bought a high blufif on the Miami river and waited for a canal to 
be built ; and Dr. Canby, who came from Lebanon, Ohio, in 1825, 
and settled near the site of DeGraff. 

Dr. Canby was not only the first physician here, but a shrewd 
and enterprising business man who gave an impetus to progress 
which meant much for the upbuilding of the community. He 
erected a grist mill in 1828, which was large enough to attract im- 
migration, being assisted in the work by the settlers, who built the 
dam, an unusually strong and permanent one of brush construction. 
The mill boasted "two run of stone," though one was but a corn- 
cracker. A sawmill was added to the plant, a community began 
to gather, and buildings to improve. 

Mr. Baldwin laid out the town of Quincy in 1830, naming it 
in honor of John Quincy Adams. Mr. and Mrs. John Bell, from 


Virginia, were the first to purchase and build in the new village. 
Like Baldwin, of whom he was an old acquaintance, Mr. Bell was 
a tanner, and like him he built a tannery as well as a home, these 
tanneries being the foundation of industry in the village.. The plat 
of Quincy was enriched in 1833-36-39 by Mr. Baldwin, Manlove 
Chambers and Thomas Harriman, each of whom contributed addi- 
tions which far outstripped the arrival of population. The village 
began to thrive. But the expected canal failed to arrive. Business 
failures ensued and land which was mortgaged was lost to wealthy 
mortgagees in the east, being released for sale only when the rail- 
road arrived after many years, giving the waiting village a chance 
for latent growth. The land grants to the railroad, were, however, 
the gift of the mortgagees (the Blatchley heirs), and from falling 
to the rank of a deserted village, Quincy was rescued by the rail- 
road. Its situation is exceptionally advantageous as well as beau- 
tiful, lying high on the bluffs above the river and cleft by picturesque 
ravines which afiford perfect drainage. 

"W. and D. Josephs," two plausible and enterprising men who 
set up a small general store business about 1845, were the tem- 
porary salvation of the town. Their business grew rapidly and 
attracted traders from as far as West Liberty and Bellefontaine. 
They sold everything a farmer needed, and they bought everything 
a farmer had to sell. They also borrowed the farmers' money at 
extravagant interest. Then the bubble burst, as bubbles will, and 
Quincy's progress received a serious check. The coming of the 
railroad restored hope. From time to time a sawmill, a gristmill, 
several wood-working factories and similar industries supplanting 
the older pioneer tanneries have flourished there, all, with the ex- 
ception of the mill, giving way in turn to more modern enterprises 
as conditions changed. The population, which has grown slowly, 
is now about seven hundred. The streets have been sidewalked 
with cement, and present a neat and well-kept aspect, though only 
piked, not paved. Rounding the picturesque hill which leads up 
from the bridge to the level of the town, a little frame "corner- 
store" building, dark and weather-beaten, shows where one mer- 
chant weathered the financial gale of the forties. The ancient 
canopy over the sidewalk supports a wild grape vine, branching 
from a stem as heavy as a tree, which was planted seventy years 
ago — a slip from a vine at the river's edge — by Mrs. William John- 
son, whose husband kept the store. Mrs. Johnson's daughter, Miss 
Minnie Fidler, still lives in the old-fashioned cottage next door, and 
is, with Mrs. D. C. Arthur, now among the oldest living residents 
of old Quincy. Dr. Nicholas V. Speece, who died in the autumn of 
1918 at the age of eighty years, was for more than fifty years the 
leading physician of the town and vicinity, and no more devoted 
member of the profession may be instanced in the county. His 
library was the largest in western Logan. Drs. A. M. Curl and 
F. E. Detrick are left in the local medical field. 

The Canby mill, which was located not at the site of DeGraff 
but nearer Quincy, passed through various ownerships, and by 1860 
was the property of Joseph Eicher, a German emigrant of 1848, and 
a fervent Unionist during the Civil War. The mill then stood on 


the original site, on the north side of the river, but after it passed 
into the hands of the AlHngers in 1871, it was abandoned, and the 
old sawmill on the south side was destroyed about 1882 to make 
room for the present substantial flour mill, which is widely known. 
The race for the mill allows a fall of only six feet, but, with turbine 
wheels, power is furnished sufficient to grind al30Ut three barrels 
per hour, of "Golden Rule" flour. The modern character of the 
mill in no way detracts from the original beauty of the situation, 
which is being carefully maintained by the citizens. At the door- 
step of the mill an interesting relic arrests the eye. It is the buhr 
stone from a pioneer mill, which is averred to have ground the meal 
and flour which fed Anthony Wayne's soldiers on the famous march 
to Detroit. The stone is a light red granite, of extreme hardness, 
and with the rude grooving still clearly defined after more than a 
century of grinding. The cyclone of 1825, in the track of which 
both Quincy and DeGraff were located, was repeated in 1872, de- 
vastating property and causing loss of human life, and piling up 
the list of misfortunes already borne by the little town. Materially, 
Quincy has long since recovered from this blow, but scars are left 
that can never be forgotten. 

The D. T. & L railroad, completed in 1892-3, gave to Quincy 
a north and south shipping route in addition to the east and west 
line of the Big Four railway, which is of great advantage. One 
of the beauty points of the vicinity is the D. T. and I. bridge which 
spans the gorge of the river from the rolling heights on the north 
to the bluff on the south. Built of steel, its airy perfection was 
attained at a cost of a million dollars, and was completed without 
delaying the passage across the river of but one train. 

The Quincy Grain company's elevator is placed conveniently to 
both railroads, and is one of the most important institutions of the 
town. The company incorporated in 1909 with a capital, all local, 
of $15,000, and exports not less than 100,000 bushels of grain an- 
nually, besides handling the local trade in all grain products, seeds, 
salt, coal, etc. The manager is W. A. Nisonger. 

The Peter Kunz company has a large plant at Quincy, in which 
local stockholders are interested, and which is well managed by 
Mr. Maurice Albaugh, a prominent citizen. 

Electric light is supplied from Sidney, Ohio, but the telephone 
service is independent. Fire protection is furnished by very good 
general equipment, with gasoline engines, the water being drawn 
from fire cisterns, or, in emergency, may be drawn from the river. 
However, no large fires have ever visited the town. 

The Miami Valley bank, unincorporated, was first organized in 
1903 with a capital stock of $5,000, with J. E. Wells, J. W. Wilkin- 
son, E. T. Lowe, J. F. Speece and W. H. Persinger as officers. It 
was reorganized in June, 1918, with $10,000 capital stock, and the 
following board: J. W. Wilkinson, president; E. T. Lowe, vice- 
president; J. S. Kneisley, cashier; F. M. Sayre, assistant cashier; 
stockholders, J. F. Speece, J. E. Wells and W. H. Persinger. It 
is installed in remodeled headquarters on the principal business 

The Methodist Episcopal body was the first to organize in 


Quincy, being followed by the Baptist, and later by the Universalist, 
each of which had its neat church edifice. All three were destroyed 
in the cyclone of 1872, and only the Methodists were strong enough 
to rebuild. This congregation is now housed in a beautiful temple 
erected in 1908, in which the Methodists of a large district gather to 

DeGraff, which, like Quincy, was built in the track laid waste 
by the tornado of 1825, was not so located merely on that account, 
for John Boggs of Pickaway county, Ohio, entered this land in 
1805 as an investment for his infant son, William. It lay unde- 
veloped until 1826, when William Boggs, now grown up and become 
a husband and father, decided to carve a fortune from it for his 
wife and child. Bringing a man to help, the family camped in 
the moving wagon in which they made the journey thither, while 
the two men built a substantial cabin, on a well-chosen hill site. 
In 1833 Mr. Boggs built a sawmill below his cabin, bringing the 
machinery from Columbus. In 1840 he built a gristmill, on Buck- 
ongehalas creek, founding a permanent industry. In 1850 Mr. Boggs 
laid out a town on his land, the railroad (then the Bellefontaine and 
Indiana, but now the Big Four) having been staked out through 
it. The name of DeGraff was bestowed in honor of the president of 
the new steel highway. John Koke and Samuel GilfilHn, who had 
purchased a portion of the land, platted a tract southeast of the rail- 
road line, but being unable to fulfill the purchase contract, this addi- 
tion reverted to Mr. Boggs. The first business house in DeGraflf was 
opened by J. M. Askrin. A. J. Lippincott put up a second store 
a month later, choosing Main street rather than Boggs street for 
a business site, a judgment which set the pace for followers. The 
prospect of a second railroad at one time helped to attract invest- 
ment, but the route was secured by Quincy. Mr. Boggs stood by 
his town with fine public spirit, assisting wherever he found need. 
He built a warehouse for Aaron Mitchell, an honest man who, with- 
out capital, began to purchase wheat, and by persistence built up 
a wheat market at DeGraff which competed with the best, and 
benefited the whole district as well as himself. The old warehouse 
did duty during the sixties as railroad depot and freight house, but 
a neat depot and improved equipment long since replaced it. Larger 
warehouses have been built, and DeGraff is now a shipping center 
of great importance, despite the nearness of Quincy with its double 
railroad facilities. William Boggs in 1852 gave to the Presbyterians, 
who were the first religious body to organize in DeGraff, a site for 
church property, to be used for that purpose only, and to revert 
to his heirs if ever abandoned by the church. Here, in the woods, 
reached only by a mere wagon track through the trees which still 
covered most of the village plat, the neat chapel was built. It was 
at first used by all denominations, Rev. William Galbreath preach- 
ing for the Presbyterian contingent. The Methodists, however, 
soon separated and built for themselves, and in 1860 the Baptist 
group erected a substantial church which is still in use, having 
escaped the cyclone which wiped out nearly half the town in 1872. 
Rev. A. W. Denlinger is the present pastor. The Presbyterian 
chapel, still neat and intact, stands in its old place, though the forest 


is departed, but the congregation built a new church home, in 1910, 
at the corner of Main and Miami streets, W. E. Harris, grandson 
of WilHam Boggs, and heir to the estate, waiving his claim, and 
permitting the old property to be sold for the benefit of the building 
fund. The new edifice is artistic and very modern, with a porte- 
cochere at the rear entrance as an unusual feature. Rev. J. A. 
Kumler, who was pastor at the time of rebuilding, resigned in 1916 
and was succeeded by Rev. William Haldstab. The "New Light" 
Christians once organized and built a church, but languished soon 
after, and the chapel was converted into a G. A. R. hall. The orig- 
inal Methodist church was destroyed by the cyclone in 1872, and 
rebuilt on a larger scale in 1873, where it still stands, having been 
lately enlarged by the addition of a parish house and lecture room. 
Rev. Clark L. Gowdy is pastor at this date (1918). The "Primitive 
Baptist" and the Christian Brethren hold meetings in a hall on 
alternate Sundays. The first school house of DeGrafif was subse- 
quently used in various ways, but at one time was devoted to a 
mission of St. Patrick's church of Bellefontaine under Father 
Bourion. It was abandoned, and the old building having been re- 
moved to the outskirts, where it serves some utilitarian purpose, 
the home of Mr. and Mrs. William Weller now occupies the site. 

DeGrafif was incorporated in 1864, and A. J. Lippincott was 
elected first mayor, with Mathias Wolf, who then owned the Boggs 
Mill, as recorder, and a council of five citizens. In 1865 the streets 
were graded, and in 1873, following the cyclone, a fire department 
was established, which has been modernized to keep pace with 
the times, its pride being the engine which was named the "William 
Boggs." In 1877 the city hall was built, housing the city offices, 
court and lockup, as well as the fire department. The town has had 
its full share of fires, but the "William Boggs" was always equal 
to the emergency until the disastrous conflagration of July, 1914, 
when a fire, which started in the rear of the Figley livery barn, 
leveled everything on Main street, from the Rhodes hotel south to 
the railroad, leaped the street, and consumed everything on the op- 
posite side from the city building to the elevator, which was saved. 
Bellefontaine, Quincy and Sidney all rushed to the rescue or little 
ofDeGraff would have been left. It is characteristic of DeGraff 
spirit that today only one of the destroyed buildings still awaits 
replacement, and the devastated portion presents an unusually fine 
appearance for a town of DeGrafif's size. Scarcely forty per cent 
of the loss was covered by insurance. It was a brave rally. Dr. 
Galer and H. C. Thatcher, two venerable citizens, lent cheer and 
encouragement to the stricken business men, but did not live to see 
the restored street rise from its ashes. The DeGraff Journal, whose 
plant was utterly ruined, never missed an issue of the paper, which 
was printed at the Fort Wayne branch of the Newspaper Union 
until the pretty new building of art brick, with its Campbell press 
and type-casting machine, was ready to resume work at the old 
stand. The editor, S. P. Pond, was, at the time of the fire, the 
chief of the fire department, which fought so valiantly at such un- 
equal odds. The Journal files of those weeks following the con- 
flagration contain some of the most valuable items of local history 


ever published, as well as a great deal of inspiriting matter which 
kept courage at the necessary pitch. The Journal is just twenty- 
five years old (1918) having been founded in 1893 by Mr. Pond, 
who with the assistance of his three daughters, operates the entire 
establishment, Mrs. Pond (who was Miss Jennie Reynolds, daugh- 
ter of an early settler) contributing occasional articles, though she 
has retired from daily service in the editorial ofhce. Mr. Pond was 
previously for eleven years connected with Daniel S. Spellman, 
on the DeGrafif Buckeye, the pioneer newspaper of the town. 

Like many another town DeGraff resolved to reform its water 
system at once, and avoid further disasters, but there are many 
things in the way of complete reform. A water works system is 
too expensive for a small town, and it involves a sewage system, 
which doubles the expense, and thus far the only move is a waiting 
one — DeGraff will not pave her streets until the water mains and 
sewers are laid. The streets are well sidewalked, and fairly well 
piked. This enterprising little city had the first electric light plant 
in Logan county, establishing it in 1893. It was municipally owned 
until February, 1918, when it was sold to avoid a bond issue — an act 
of doubtful wisdom. 

Of the two elevators at DeGraflf, that of the Buckland Milling 
company, which operates a flour mill in connection with the plant, 
has a local manager, William Ward, while the Andrew Mohr ware- 
house is owned by DeGraff capital. The combined shipments of 
these firms aggregate in the neighborhood of three hundred thousand 
bushels annually, of all grains. 

DeGraff is the home of the oldest bank in Logan county outside 
of Bellefontaine, the "Citizens' Bank of DeGralf" having been or- 
ganized in 1885. It was then a private concern, and its first presi- 
dent was I. S. Williams, and the cashier, B. F. Loofbourrow. Later 
the firm became Williams, Harris, Galer & Koogler, and in 1908 it 
was reorganized and incorporated under the state banking laws, 
with a capital of $30,000. The officers are W. E. Harris, president ; 
F. M. Galer, vice-president; Harry W. Koogler, cashier; S. B. Ham- 
sher, assistant cashier. Dr. C. G. Weller and Dr. J. A. Shawan are 
second and third vice-presidents, and there are thirty stockholders. 
The surplus and undivided profits total about $27,000. The bank's 
headquarters were remodeled in 1914, and are not surpassed in in- 
terior elegance and commodiousness in the county. There is a safe 
deposit department in the vault, which is the largest burglar proof 
vault in the county, being fire proof as well. 

DeGrafT is a fair open town, pretty and well built. It has un- 
usually wide-awake retail business houses, and it is growing. Across 
the Buckongehalas, which circles the major part of the town before 
emptying into the Miami west of the bend, is an extension of the 
village set against a fine hill which overlooks DeGrafif proper, the 
"suburb" being known as "Thatcherville," from the numerous mem- 
bers of the prominent family who have built their homes over there. 
It is not a separate village, but a natural extens