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Full text of "One hundred years in Illinois, 1818-1918; an account of the development of Illinois in the first century of her statehood .."

_- 



OF THE 
UNIVERSITY 
OF ILLINOIS 



977o3 
M22o 






HISTQROL SURHEY 



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UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS LIBRARY AT URBANA-CHAMPAIGN 



L161 O-1096 



LIBRARY 

OF THE 

UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS 



One Hundred Years 
In Illinois 



(1818-1918) 



An account of the development of Illinois 
in the first century of her statehood, by a 
citizen born in the same year as the City of 
Chicago, whose grandfather moved into 
Illinois the year in which the State was born, 
and whose father was born on the same day 
and in the same year as Abraham Lincoln. 



By 

JOHN MCLEAN, M. D. 



Peterson Linotyping Company 

CHICAGO 

1919 



To 

the Friends of 

Today and Yesterday 

This Book of Memories 

Is Affectionately 

Dedicated by 

the Author 






FOREWORD 

The friends of to-day and yesterday, to whom 
this book of memories is dedicated, will require 
no word of explanation, excuse or apology for the 
appearance of this volume. 

The casual or curious reader of the future who 
may chance to pick up the book in an idle or un- 
guarded moment, may wonder how it happened 
that a physician permitted the child to live; so, 
in view of this possibility, it is considered proper 
to say a word or two as a defense against possible 
animadversions on my professional character and 
ability. 

The idea of reducing these reminiscences to 
writing originated back in the days when I was 
busily engaged in my occupation as surgeon for 
the Pullman Company, when, at times, I was 
called upon to administer surgical treatment to 
as many as twenty or twenty-five persons per day 
who had been injured in the works. Some of the 
friends who visited at our home during that time, 
and to whom I related some of the incidents here- 
in set down, were kind enough to say that they 
were of such general interest as to deserve a wider 
circulation, and to suggest that I have them pub- 
lished. 



FOREWORD 



While I remained at my post as surgeon, I never 
found time to make the necessary notes; but as 
soon as I was placed on the retired list, I began 
getting my materials in shape. This coming to 
the attention of the publisher of THE REPUB- 
LICAN, a weekly newspaper in Chicago, he asked 
the privilege of publishing the story serially in 
1918 as a special feature celebrating the one-hun- 
dredth anniversary of the admission of Illinois 
into the Union. Such an arrangement was made, 
which perhaps gave my humble production undue 
prominence. However, the friendly commenda- 
tions received from readers of THE REPUBLI- 
CAN have encouraged me to stick to my original 
plan, namely, to print the tales for private circu- 
lation among my friends, and thus to leave in 
their hands a volume which might be interesting 
to them, if not to strangers. 

In the preparation of my story for publication, 
I have been favored with an abundance of intelli- 
gent and sympathetic aid and co-operation. My 
nephew, Charles E. Ward, formerly of DuQuoin, 
but now practicing law in Chicago, has acted not 
only as my amanuensis but as my agent and at- 
torney to conduct negotiations for me with the 
publishers. I also feel constrained here to record 
the fact that Hon. John P. Hopkins, ex-Mayor 
of Chicago, now deceased, took a great interest in 
my work and helped me secure valuable data con- 
cerning the early days of Pullman, where he was 

2 



FOREWORD 



then employed. In addition to these, I have had 
valued assistance from Edward F. Bryant, Presi- 
dent of the Pullman Trust & Savings Bank, from 
Eli C. Tourtelot, a former associate of John P. 
Hopkins, from Mrs. Edward Henricks, who in 
many ways was closely associated with the devel- 
opment of the Town of Pullman, and from many, 
many others who have given aid and encourage- 
ment to the work. 

THE AUTHOR. 
April 15, 1919. 



CONTENTS 

CHAPTER PAGE 

I Columbia and the Scotchman ... 7 

II My Clan and My Family .... 14 

III The French in Illinois 22 

IV The British Occupation 31 

V Period of American Settlement ... 37 

VI Illinois as a Territory 45 

VII Migration of the McLeans .... 52 

VIII Illinois a Hundred Years Ago ... 60 

IX Senator John McLean 68 

X The Eventful Year 1830 77 

XI The Author Makes His Appearance . . 87 

XII A Boyhood Before the War .... 96 

XIII The Rise of Abraham Lincoln ... 107 

XIV My Student Days 121 

XV WAR! 132 

XVI The Rise of General Grant .... 142 

XVII On the Way to Shiloh 151 

XVIII The Battle of Shiloh 160 

XIX Invalided 172 

XX Back to Private Life . 180 



CONTENTS 



CHAPTER PAGE 

XXI In the Medical Profession .... 189 

XXII A Great Task Finished 200 

XXIII Breaking Old Ties 210 

XXIV George M. Pullman ...... 218- 

XXV Making the Model Town .... 228- 

XXVI Pioneers of Pullman 238- 

XXVII The Evolution of Modern Pullman . . 247^ 

XXVIII Some Men of Pullman 256- 

XXIX Just Memories 266 

XXX The Pullman of Today 278- 

XXXI Retrospection 289 



One Hundred Years 
In Illinois 



CHAPTER I 
COLUMBIA AND THE SCOTCHMAN 

In our State hymn the following true and beauti- 
ful sentiment will be found : 

"Not without thy wondrous story, 

Illinois, Illinois, 
Could be writ the nation's glory, 

Illinois, Illinois. 

So it also with truth might be said that but for 
the sons of Scotland our great beacon light of Free- 
dom would not have been lighted on this continent, 
and could not have been kept burning through the 
storms which, up to now, have spent their fury 
upon it, only to fan its holy fire into a brighter and 
more enduring glow. 

At the close of the Revolutionary War there was 
a population here of approximately Zy 2 million peo- 
ple, of which it is estimated that one-third, or over 
a million, were of Scotch ancestry. The flood tide 

7 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

of this migration came in the century preceding the 
revolution, and was made up of two streams, one 
from Scotland, and the other from the province of 
Ulster, in Ireland, where large numbers of Presby- 
terians from Scotland had sought an asylum against 
the persecution directed against them in their na- 
tive land for "non-conformity" with the forms of 
worship prescribed by the English Parliament for 
use in the Protestant Episcopal churches, which 
were held to represent the true and only religious 
faith of the realm. 

Early in his history the Scotchman earned the 
humorous characterization to the effect that a 
Scotchman is always positive and sometimes right ; 
so it was not strange that the hard-headed followers 
of the religious doctrines of John Calvin and John 
Knox should resent the idea that someone else, 
least of all the English, could tell them what they 
might believe or how they should worship, whether 
standing, sitting or kneeling. With the whole 
power of an arrogant, aristocratic government ar- 
rayed against them to compel observance of the 
state religion which was so distasteful to them, they 
found it necessary, just as the Pilgrim Fathers 
found it necessary, to seek a more congenial habi- 
tation. 

The analogy between the Pilgrims and the Scotch 
dissenters is remarkable in that both sought relief 
from a common oppressor; both fled to near-by 
countries the Pilgrims to Holland, the Scotch dis- 

8 



COLUMBIA AND THE SCOTCHMAN 

senters to Ireland where, like the children of Is- 
rael, they both remained for a generation or two 
before entering the promised land, and both ulti- 
mately found their way to these inviting shores 

Those who came directly from Scotland settled, 
for the most part, along the rock-bound coast of 
New England, that appealing to them, undoubt- 
edly, as being similar to the bleak and forbidding 
shores from which they had just departed, but 
which had grown dear to them as their home. 

The Ulster Scot, or the Scotch-Irish, as they are 
erroneously termed, seemed inclined more toward 
the South, settling in great numbers in Pennsylva- 
nia and in the southern colonies as far south as 
Georgia, which bordered on the then Spanish do- 
main of Florida. In describing the arrival of this 
people, our American historian, Bancroft, says of 
them: 

"They brought to America no submissive love 
for England; and their experience and their re- 
ligion alike bade them meet oppression with 
prompt resistance. We shall find the first voice 
publicly raised in America to dissolve all connec- 
tion with Great Britain came not from the Puri- 
tans of New England, or the Dutch of New York, 
or the planters of Virginia, but from Scotch-Irish 
Presbyterians." 

In order that the stage may be set properly, even 
for such an ordinary drama as the events of my life 
may furnish, and in order that the proper atmos- 

9 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

phere as it is termed by the artists may be cre- 
ated so that my patient readers may understand 
the rich heritage which I, in common with my 
countrymen, received from our hardy ancestors, 
and the strong prenatal influences which operated 
in my favor, I deem it well to recount briefly some 
names and facts in American history which will al- 
ways stand to the glory of old Scotland and her 
stalwart sons. 

Among the pioneer educators in this country 
were two celebrated Scotchmen. One was James 
Blair, who founded William and Mary College, in 
Virginia, in which Thomas Jefferson, author of the 
Declaration of Independence, received his educa- 
tion; and the other was John Witherspoon, who 
made a great university at Princeton, sat in the 
Continental Congress, advocated and signed the 
Declaration of Independence, and helped frame the 
Articles of Confederation. When this country stood 
in awe of Great Britain, and our people felt most 
keenly her tyrannical oppression, it was Andrew 
Hamilton, of Pennsylvania, a Scotchman, who 
stood forth at his own peril in defense of the free- 
dom of the press and the right of free speech ; and 
the firebrand of the revolution, Patrick Henry, of 
Virginia, was the most prominent of the large num- 
ber of Scots who insisted on independence. In the 
Continental Congress which declared independence 
there were eleven Scotchmen in the membership of 
fifty-six; and in the convention which framed our 

10 



COLUMBIA AND THE SCOTCHMAN 

present Constitution the Scotch were twelve out of 
fifty-four. Among the twelve of Scotch ancestry 
were Alexander Hamilton, incomparably the great- 
est intellect of his time ; James Wilson, recognized 
as the greatest lawyer of the convention and after- 
ward on the United States Supreme Bench; Rut- 
ledge, of South Carolina, second Chief Justice of the 
Supreme Court; and William Livingston, of New 
Jersey, first Governor of his State. Of the first Gov- 
ernors of the thirteen original states, nine were 
Scotchmen. The first commander of the American 
Navy, John Paul Jones, was a born Scotchman, as 
was the brave and fearless George Rogers Clark, 
who blazed the way for civilization west of the 
Alleghanies and thereby added the Northwest Ter- 
ritory to our domain. Of the men who have filled 
the great office of President of the United States, 
twelve, at least, trace back to Scotland in their an- 
cestry, our present chief executive's forebears hav- 
ing been Ulster Scots. In the first half of the nine- 
teenth century, in statesmanship the Scotch easily 
held first place, numbering among the most promi- 
nent such representatives as James Monroe, An- 
drew Jackson, Henry Clay, Daniel Webster, and 
John C. Calhoun; in the last half of that century 
the laurels of Scotland were supported by Chase, 
Elaine, Hay, Cleveland, McKinley and Roosevelt, 
the latter's mother being of Scotch descent. It is 
not pleasant to record the fact that the leader of the 
Confederacy, Jefferson Davis, was of Scotch an- 
il 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

cestry, as was their great military leader, the gal- 
lant soldier and Christian gentleman, "Stonewall" 
Jackson; but these defections, important and seri- 
ous as they were, were more than made up by the 
loyal services of Grant, McLellan, Buell, McPher- 
son and McDowell, all of Scotch antecedents, while 
the great leaders of the cause of human liberty in- 
cluded such of our people as Garrison, Rankin, 
Lovejoy and Beecher. Not only American litera- 
ture, but the literature of the world, was enriched 
by the contributions of Washington Irving and 
Whittier, and the stage is better by reason of hav- 
ing supported Macready. In American journalism, 
Scotland is proud to name James Gordon Bennett, 
Horace Greeley and Whitelaw Reid among its sons 
who have reached exalted prominence in that field. 
In the scientific world we are satisfied that Fulton 
of the steamboat, Stephenson of the locomotive, 
Morse of the telegraph, Bell of the telephone, Mc- 
Cormick of the reaper, and Edison, the wizard of 
electricity, had a generous quantity of Scotch 
blood in their veins. 

It must be remembered that in the century prior 
to the revolution, when the Scotch from the mother 
country and from Ulster migrated to this land in 
great numbers, they did not have such a wide 
choice of location as the empire now presents. At 
that time the English speaking civilization of this 
continent was confined to a fringe of settlement 
along the Atlantic seaboard. Hardy adventurers 

12 



COLUMBIA AND THE SCOTCHMAN 

had pushed west to the Appalachian Mountains; 
western New York and western Pennsylvania be- 
ing regarded as the extreme frontier, beyond which 
was a vast territory little known to the colonists, 
occupied and dominated by hostile tribes of bar- 
barous Indians. The original royal grants estab- 
lishing the colonies had conveyed to the grantees 
a specified frontage along the Atlantic coast and a 
strip of land of that width back inland to the Mis- 
sissippi, which was assumed to be the western 
boundary of the English possessions. Up to the 
time of the revolution, however, that portion of the 
territory between the Appalachians and the Missis- 
sippi had not been brought under the control of the 
colonies for various reasons, among which were 
many contending claims of sovereignty over the 
territory in question. All of the territory north of 
the Ohio, known as the Northwest Territory, in- 
cluding the present State of Illinois, was under 
French dominion until 1763, when it was trans- 
ferred by treaty to the English ; but it was not then 
open to settlement because the king of England is- 
sued a proclamation reserving the territory for oc- 
cupation by the Indians and forbidding white set- 
tlements. 



13 



CHAPTER II 
MY CLAN AND MY FAMILY 

In the previous chapter, the introduction to an 
account of my eighty years' experience, I thought 
it well to sketch briefly the splendid services to this 
country which have been rendered by men of the 
sturdy qualities of the Scotch people, from whom I 
had the honor to spring. The material for that 
sketch, while matter of more or less common knowl- 
edge to well-informed Scotchmen, had previously 
been collected and edited by Hon. Whitelaw Reid 
while ambassador to Great Britain, at the Edin- 
burgh Philosophical Institution, where he delivered 
a brilliant address on "The Scot in America," upon 
which address I took the liberty to draw quite 
freely for facts. Having recorded some of the 
mighty deeds of the mighty men from Caledonia, 
it would not be improper at this time, perhaps, to 
tell the reader something about my own people. 

The Clan McLean is a venerable institution, hav- 
ing been in existence now for some seven hundred 
years. It was organized under its first chieftain, 
under his name Gillean; and his son, of course, 
added the prefix Mac when he became chieftain, 
indicating, as it does in Scottish nomenclature, a 

14 



MY CLAN AND MY FAMILY 



son of Gillean. Through the seven centuries which 
have passed since Gillean and his son, Mac Gillean, 
the name has been contracted to its present form 
of McLean, of which species there are many speci- 
mens in this country, as almost any one can testify. 

During the World's Columbian Exposition, held 
in Chicago in 1893, there was a reunion of the clan 
at which gathered some four hundred representa- 
tives, drawn from all parts of the civilized world, 
and the assembled clansmen on that occasion were 
presided over by Fitz-Roy Donald McLean, the 
twenty-sixth hereditary chieftain of the clan. He 
was the embodiment of all that a Scottish chief 
should be : himself a warrior, a veteran of the Cri- 
mea and one of the gallant six hundred who rode 
"into the jaws of death" and into deathless glory 
and renown at Balaklava. Although he was chief- 
tain of the clan by heredity, he won his own spurs 
on the field of battle, receiving a commission before 
he was twenty years old, from the hand of Queen 
Victoria. The last I heard of Fitz-Roy was that 
he had been retired as a brigadier-general. 

In the early part of the eighteenth century, two 
brothers of the clan, John and William, came to 
America and settled on the banks of the Schuylkill 
river, near Philadelphia. Learning of the more 
salubrious climate farther south, and influenced by 
the prospect of raising bounteous crops with less 
hardships, the brothers were persuaded to move to 
North Carolina about the middle of the eighteenth 

15 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

century, where they made a permanent settlement 
at Orange, later Guilford Court House, where they 
lived, loved, fought, and died. My great-grand- 
father, John McLean, was a soldier in the Revo- 
lutionary War. The battle of Guilford Court House 
was fought near the home of my ancestors, and the 
story has come down to us of how on that occasion 
the men of our neighborhood went into that battle 
with their long squirrel rifles, which boded ill for 
any redcoat who came within range, for they had 
brought from their homes across the sea a smolder- 
ing resentment against anything and anybody con- 
nected with the regime which had trampled their 
rights and liberties into the dust. It was little 
wonder that some of the leading spirits of the Revo- 
lution were men of undiluted Scotch blood. 

It would be unseemly for me to inflict upon my 
readers a boastful account of the achievements of 
my relatives, but in passing it will doubtless be for- 
given if I take sufficient space to record the fact 
that several of the family have been in the lower 
house of Congress ; two of the family have reached 
the United States Senate, one from Illinois, who 
will appear later in this narrative, and another now 
a senator from Connecticut, George P. McLean, 
whose father attended the reunion of our clan dur- 
ing the World's Fair; and one has graced the 
United States Supreme bench. Another creditable 
representative who attended that meeting was Dr. 
Donald McLean, of Detroit, Mich., who will be 

16 



MY CLAN AND MY FAMILY 



remembered by the medical profession at large, and 
by the people of Michigan of his day, as one of the 
most eminent surgeons of his time. Dr. Donald 
McLean has been gathered unto his fathers, but 
in proof of the fact that the stock has not degen- 
erated, and in fairness to the living, it may be stated 
that his good and noble work goes on in the person 
and practice of his son, Dr. Angus McLean, of 
Detroit, a "chip off the old block," who splendidly 
sustains the enviable reputation of his father be- 
fore him. He is now in France, in the service of 
his country, where, I am confident, he and the other 
American sons of Scotland, including my only son 
and five of my nephews, will acquit themselves in a 
way which will prove them worthy sons of worthy 
sires. 

My father, James Aiken McLean, was born in 
the old homestead near Guilford Court House, 
N. C., on February 12, 1809, the day which was 
hallowed in American history by the birth of an- 
other boy, under less congenial circumstances, in 
the backwoods of Kentucky, but who, by the grace 
of God Almighty, Who moves in a mysterious way 
His wonders to perform, was destined to strike the 
shackles of slavery from a downtrodden people and 
to prevent the dissolution of the Union. In grate- 
ful reverence I pause to write the name Abraham 
Lincoln ! The coincidence of the birth of my father 
on the same day with the immortal Lincoln had a 
strange sequel in after years in the fact that during 

17 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

many of the thirty-three years of my connection 
with the Pullman Company as their surgeon the 
president of the company was none other than 
Robert T. Lincoln, a son of the Great Emancipator, 
My grandfather, Robert McLean, when my father 
was nine years of age, moved with his family to 
"the Illinois country," as it was known, for rea- 
sons and under circumstances which will be ex- 
plained hereafter. Some of our family remained 
in North Carolina, where their descendants live 
today on lands which have been in the unbroken 
possession of my people for generation after gen- 
eration. A letter which I received some time ago 
from a distant cousin contained a graphic descrip- 
tion of the old homestead which would, perhaps, 
be of interest to my readers, and which for that 
reason is reproduced here, as follows : 

"About the year 1750, at the time of what is known 
as the Scotch-Irish movement, John McLean, a native 
of the County Ulster, Ireland, moved from the colony 
of Pennsylvania to secure for himself and his poster- 
ity a home in the wilds of North Carolina. He en- 
tered a large tract of land on the waters of Alamance 
creek, in what was then Orange, but now Guilford 
County. Within sight of this historic stream he built 
his house, and it is more of this house than of those 
who occupied it, that I wish to write. The exact 
date of its erection is not known, but we are certain 
that it was built before the year 1767. It is now in 
possession of the fifth generation of McLeans de- 
scended in a direct line from the original owner, and 
is now and has been, during all these years, occupied 
18 



MY CLAN AND MY FAMILY 



as a dwelling. We think that it is the oldest inhabited 
house in Guilford County. The house is almost a 
quadrangle three sides built of yellow poplar logs 
sawed about eight or ten inches square, pinned to- 
gether at the corners and placed upon a solid rock 
foundation. This huge construction was called the 
frame and it was then weatherboarded and ceiled, and 
was originally painted red. It fronts the east and 
has a porch running along both the east and west 
sides. The south end is built entirely of rocks and 
originally contained a fireplace eleven feet wide, and 
so high that a man six feet tall could stand under 
the mantel. The front door, a heavy but rather hand- 
some affair, was made in two parts, upper and lower. 
All of the lumber used was gotten out and prepared 
by hand, and shows some very fine and artistic work- 
manship. When first built, and for a long time after, 
the entire house was in one room and heated by this 
immense fireplace. Marshall McLean, the second 
proprietor, divided it into two rooms and built a 
chimney at the north end. John Marshall McLean, 
the third proprietor, built an ell against the front, but 
without making any change in the exterior appearance 
of the house. Walter H. McLean, the present pro- 
prietor, has filled in this large fireplace, extended a 
partition in the opposite direction, and thus made 
two comfortable rooms with a fireplace in each one, 
all from this large fireplace. Notwithstanding all 
these changes the outside appearance of the old house 
is the same today that it was when the Liberty Bell 
sounded in 1776. 

"This quaint old house has been the home of the 
same family under two local and three national gov- 
ernments, under its broad low roof have slept soldiers 
of five wars. It had the honor of sheltering Colonel 
19 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

William Washington in the Spring of 1781, while 
his troops reposed under the tall graceful poplars in 
the yard. There are those who can trace their an- 
cestry back to this old house now known to be living 
in the states of New Jersey, Maryland, Virginia, 
North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Texas, 
Tertnessee, Kentucky, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, 
the Dakotas and Washington, and many have been 
lost sight of and perhaps living in other states. They 
have spanned the continent and among them are 
found lawyers, physicians, ministers, teachers, mer- 
chants, farmers, mechanics, artisans. 

"Such is the history, briefly told, of the old house. 
The companions of its early days are all gone, but 
the old doorsteps upon which men have trod, when 
with knapsack and rifle they left home at their coun- 
try's call to endure all the hardships of a soldier's 
life, are the same now as then. The same stones are 
in the large old chimney around which sat the 
mothers, wives and daughters, and with deft fingers 
made wonderful fabrics of flax, wool or cotton, while 
they anxiously waited for news of the loved ones 
far away. The beautiful waters of the Alamance sing 
the same song as they ripple over the same stones 
now as then. All else is changed. Even the sturdy 
oaks and tall, graceful poplars have decayed and 
died. Generations have come and gone. Some have 
sought homes in the far west, and long since mingled 
their ashes with the dust of the prairie. Others have 
been laid to rest in the quiet old Alamance church- 
yard, and the same Alamance creek, which sang their 
lullaby when they lay in their cradles now sings their 
requiem as it rushes past their graves. Still the old 
house stands as of yore, extending its hospitality to 
all who may come. Another and a younger genera- 
20 



MY CLAN AND MY FAMILY 



tion now roam over the old house, peering into the 
dark nooks and crannies and wondering what they 
were for, exploring the mysteries of the old garret 
arid bringing to light the old swords, pistols and 
reap-hooks, implements of war and peace, little 
dreaming of the hardships endured and the sacrifices 
made by the owners of these implements to secure 
the liberty and freedom they now enjoy." 



21 



CHAPTER III 
THE FRENCH IN ILLINOIS 

The Northwest Territory, including all of the 
country around the Great Lakes north of the 
Ohio and east of the Mississippi, was patiently 
acquired by the French through the gradual ex- 
tension of their missions and settlements, begin- 
ning with the settlement on the St. Lawrence 
River in 1608, which they named Quebec. From 
this settlement as a base they steadily pushed 
their way into the interior, following the course 
of the St. Lawrence River and the Great Lakes 
which it drained. Within three years a settle- 
ment was established at Montreal, and by the 
middle of the seventeenth century they had 
established themselves at the Rapids of the St. 
Mary's River, connecting Lakes Superior and 
Huron, from which their settlement took its 
name, Sault Ste. Marie. Steadily pushing their 
outposts into the wilderness, settlements were 
soon flourishing at the western extremity of Lake 
Superior near the present site of Duluth, and as 
far south as Green Bay on Lake Michigan. 

In the meantime their headquarters had been 
established on Mackinac Island, located in the 
straits of the same name, through which the 
waters of Lake Michigan flow into Lake Huron. 

22 



THE FRENCH IN ILLINOIS 



It was here, not many years later, that John 
Jacob Astor, the founder of the famous American 
family of that name, located a trading post on the 
island which, for many years afterward, was the 
center of the fur trading industry around the 
Great Lakes. Father Marquette established a 
mission on the mainland north of the island which 
was named St. Ignace, and his remains are repos- 
ing there today in the quiet little village, which 
has changed but little during the two centuries 
which have passed since its establishment. 

It was at the mission of St. Ignace, in Decem- 
ber, 1672, that Louis Joliet delivered to Father 
Marquette a message from the Governor of 
Canada, Count Frontenac, requesting them to 
organize a party and explore to the westward to 
locate, if possible, a mighty river said to be some 
distance west of Lake Michigan. They started 
on their journey in the middle of the following 
May, skirting the west shore of Lake Michigan 
to Green Bay, from thence up the Fox River to 
its headwaters, thence across a portage pointed 
out by their Indian guides to the headwaters of 
the Wisconsin, down which they propelled their 
canoes, reaching the Mississippi on June 17, 1673. 
Floating with the current on the bosom of the 
great river, they drifted as far south as the mouth 
of the Arkansas, and then turned their canoes 
for the trip back. On their return trip they were 
influenced to ascend the Illinois River to see if 

23 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

they could return to the Great Lakes by that 
route. When they reached the present site of 
Utica, near Ottawa, they found a village of 
Indians camped along the shore who called them- 
selves Kaskaskias. Marquette established such 
cordial relations with these red men of the prairie 
that they were loath to let him depart, and did 
so only upon his promise to return and establish 
a mission in their midst. He then went on to 
the mission on Green Bay, which was reached 
early in the fall of that year. 

A year later Marquette started on his return 
to the village of the Kaskaskias in order to. re- 
deem his promise, but his failing health and 
waning strength made it necessary for him to 
disembark often to rest and recuperate. Pro- 
ceeding in this way by easy stages, his party 
reached the mouth of the Chicago River about 
the first of December, when Father Marquette 
became so ill that it was necessary to break the 
journey here. His faithful and devoted follow- 
ers, in order to insure the greatest comfort for 
him, built a hut on the banks of the Chicago 
River at a point near where Robey Street now 
crosses the west fork of the south branch of the 
river, the approximate location of which is now 
designated by a large cross placed on the site 
by the Chicago Association of Commerce. That 
was the first habitation built for a white man 
in the Mississippi valley. With the coming of 

24 



THE FRENCH IN ILLINOIS 



Spring, Marquette proceeded on his way to his 
Indian friends, where he established a mission 
and started back, hoping to reach St. Ignace be- 
fore he died. He failed to realize his desire, 
dying on the return trip near the present site 
of Ludington, Michigan. 

Marquette and Joliet were followed in 1679 
by the Chevalier, Robert de La Salle, with his 
faithful associate, Tonti, and the ever-present 
representative of the church, in this case Father 
Hennepin. It was the dream of La Salle to 
establish a chain of forts from Quebec on the 
St. Lawrence River around the Great Lakes and 
down the Mississippi valley to New Orleans on 
the Mississippi, by which the French would con- 
trol the great commerce which he foresaw must 
be developed along those mighty water routes. 
In pursuance of his great scheme, he built a fort 
at the mouth of the St. Joseph River on the east 
shore of Lake Michigan which he called Fort 
Miami, from the name of the Indians in that 
vicinity. He then proceeded up the St. Joseph 
River to its headwaters, across a portage to the 
Kankakee, and down the Kankakee into the Illi- 
nois River, reaching Peoria Lake about the first 
of the year. Here, near the present site of Peoria, 
he built his second fort, which he -named Creve 
Coeur (broken heart), in token of the misfortunes 
and disasters which had recently overtaken but 
had not overwhelmed him. Returning to Mon- 

25 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

treal to mend his broken fortunes, he prepared 
himself for his attempt to navigate the Missis- 
sippi River to its mouth, in which he finally suc- 
ceeded, planting the banner of France at the 
mouth of the Father of Waters on April 9, 1682, 
on which day, by right of exploration, he claimed 
all of the territory drained by the great river 
in the name of his king, Louis XIV, after whom 
he called it the Territory of Louisiana. This 
established and constituted the basis of the 
French claim to practically all the territory in the 
United States between the Appalachian and the 
Rocky Mountains. 

On his return to the Illinois country he was 
stricken en route with illness, which made it 
necessary for him to disembark at a point which 
is the present site of Natchez, Mississippi, where 
a rudely constructed fort, called Prud Homme, 
was erected for his protection. His arrival in 
Illinois was thus delayed until December, 1682. 
During his absence from Illinois the savage and 
hostile Iroquois Indians had dispersed the friend- 
ly and peaceful Illinois tribes along the river of 
that name and had destroyed the fort on Peoria 
Lake. This led La Salle to execute the plan 
he had contemplated for years, namely, the erec- 
tion of a fort on the summit of Starved Rock, 
which rises to a height of 125 feet on the bank 
of the Illinois River near Utica. This fortifica- 
tion was the greatest structure erected by La Salle 

26 



THE FRENCH IN ILLINOIS 



in Illinois, and within a short time there was 
located within the sound of its guns 20,000 Illi- 
nois Indians, who came there for protection from 
the savage Iroquois. 

Soon after the erection of the fort on Starved 
Rock, Fort St. Louis, so named in honor of his 
king, La Salle went to France to report his 
achievements to his monarch, who received him 
with great cordiality and arranged for him an 
expedition which was to sail from France to the 
mouth of the Mississippi in order to establish a 
colony there. Pursued by persistent misfortune, 
the expedition missed the mouth of the Missis- 
sippi and landed somewhere on the coast of Texas, 
where, after a few years of hardship and priva- 
tion, his followers mutinied and he was foully 
assassinated by one of his own party early in 
1637. 

Soon after the death of La Salle the settlers 
of the upper Illinois were transplanted to the 
Mississippi River, the principal settlement being 
made on the Illinois shore just above the present 
site of Chester, which was named Kaskaskia, ap- 
parently to perpetuate the memory of Father Mar- 
quette's mission on the upper Illinois. It has been 
suggested that the settlement was made by men 
of La Salle's party on their return from the dis- 
covery of the mouth of the Mississippi in 1682, 
but there is nothing to substantiate this theory. 
It is more likely that the removal came about as 

27 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

the culmination of the many disasters which at- 
tended the attempts of the French to make settle- 
ments on the upper Illinois, for about the time 
of the settlement of Kaskaskia on the upper Mis- 
sissippi, Tonti, the associate of La Salle, is found 
in the extreme southern colonies along the Gulf 
of Mexico, showing that even that hardy adven- 
turer had given up the idea of subduing or paci- 
fying the implacable Iroquois Indians. Within 
a year after the settlement of Kaskaskia another 
settlement was made on the Illinois shore about 
four miles south of the present site of East St. 
Louis, which was called Cahokia, after a tribe 
of Indians in that vicinity. At about the same 
time a combined trading post and mission was 
established on the Ohio River in Illinois a short 
distance from the mouth of the Ohio, near the 
present location of Metropolis, which was called 
Fort Assumption, but later changed to Fort 
Massac, for which Massac County was named, the 
derivation of which is not just clear. 

The dawn of the eighteenth century found 
these thriving French colonies located along the 
important waterways, and they were considered 
of enough importance in connection with the 
French occupation of the territory that a detach- 
ment of the colony at New Orleans was sent north 
in 1718 under Boisbriant to build an imposing 
fortress for their protection. This fort, named 
Chartres, was located on the Mississippi River 

28 



THE FRENCH IN ILLINOIS 



midway between Kaskaskia and Cahokia. At the 
time it was built it was the most imposing mili- 
tary structure on the continent, costing approxi- 
mately one million dollars. Within its walls the 
flower of French society in New France was wont 
to gather, and the fame of its social functions 
spread even to Europe. In sharp contrast to the 
gay life at the fort was the humble life of the 
peasantry which it was supposed to protect. The 
male section of this population was made up 
largely of trappers who roamed the woods and 
navigated the streams in search of furs and pel- 
tries. There not being many French women for 
them to associate with, it was only natural that 
there should be considerable miscegenation with 
the natives, which was given the tacit approval 
of the church. 

Although the rich, alluvial bottom lands of 
the valley they occupied constituted the most 
fertile portion of the earth's surface, the French 
were supremely indifferent to agriculture or any- 
thing connected with it. On the other hand, the 
English-speaking peoples east of the Alleghanies 
were attached to the quiet pursuit of farming, 
and, consequently, looked with longing eyes at 
the great Mississippi valley which was dominated 
by the French. This clash of opposing interests 
heralded the approach of the irrepressible conflict 
which finally resulted in the French and Indian 
War against England and the colonies which 

29 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

was concluded by the Treaty of Paris in 1763, 
under which the English acquired all of the ter- 
ritory east of the Mississippi, and the Spanish all 
of the territory west of the Mississippi. 

In the wars which had raged between the 
French and the English, the Indians always had 
been allied with the French, which had engen- 
dered a deep-seated animosity between the Eng- 
lish and the Indians. Presumably to protect his 
people against the expected vengeance of the 
English, Pontiac, a chief of the Ottawas, organ- 
ized a confederacy of the principal Indian tribes 
which resulted in two years of sanguinary warfare 
between the native Indians and the encroaching 
settlers, which terminated finally with the death 
of Pontiac, who was assassinated in the Cahokia 
settlement following a drunken brawl with some 
of his associates. 

Following the Treaty of Paris, the British were 
so busy with Pontiac and his followers that no 
attention was paid to Fort Chartres for two years, 
when on October 10, 1765, Captain Sterling, a 
British officer, with a company of Scotch High- 
landers, arrived and took peaceable possession of 
the fort for the British Government, but there 
being no indication of resistance in that quarter 
the troops were soon withdrawn. In 1772 Fort 
Chartres was undermined and swallowed up by 
the Mississippi, thus disappearing with the people 
who brought it into being. 

30 



CHAPTER IV 
THE BRITISH OCCUPATION 

Upon acquiring by conquest a title to the pos- 
sessions of France in America, the British king, 
on October 7, 1763, issued a proclamation prohib- 
iting settlement by whites beyond the Atlantic 
seaboard, the purpose of which was to preserve 
the interior of the country for a hunting preserve 
for the Indians, thus to gain their friendship as 
against the colonists, and to insure a continuation 
of the lucrative fur trade of the vast, uninhabited 
interior region vaguely known as New France. 

To supplement this, Captain Sterling, the Brit- 
ish officer who invested Fort Chartres with his 
regiment of Scotch Highlanders, issued a procla- 
mation from General Gage, dated December 30, 
1764, to the effect that the French and Indian 
inhabitants might retain their religion and their 
lands if they would "take the oath of fidelity and 
obedience to His Majesty * * * and act in con- 
cert with His Majesty's officers." Thus early did 
the mother country show her uneasiness at the 
growing power and increasing spirit of independ- 
ence which was steadily developing in the colo- 
nies. The policy of excluding her own children 

31 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

and favoring her erstwhile enemies was continued 
up to the last by the English Government, her 
last official exhibition of this stupid plan being 
an act of Parliament in 1774 which extended the 
jurisdiction of the province of Quebec to include 
the French inhabitants in the upper Mississippi 
valley. 

While this policy reconciled the French, to 
some extent, to British rule, and secured French 
and Indian aid in the early years of the Revo- 
lutionary War, it was not sufficient to hold the 
French in Illinois. Most of them went to the 
settlements across the Mississippi, then under the 
sovereignty of Spain, where the French enjoyed 
their own religion and customs without restraint, 
so that at the beginning of the Revolution there 
were fewer French residents in Illinois than there 
had been for many years. 

That the British policy was an aggravation to 
the eastern colonists is shown by one of the rea- 
sons specified in the Declaration of Independence 
for breaking off relations with the mother coun- 
try, as follows: "For abolishing the free system 
of English laws in a neighboring province, estab- 
lishing therein an arbitrary government, and en- 
larging its boundaries, so as to render it at once an 
example and fit instrument for introducing the 
same absolute rule into these colonies." 

The threatened revolution came on apace. On 
April 18, 1775, at Lexington, was fired the shot 

32 



THE BRITISH OCCUPATION 



"heard round the world." Then came Bunker Hill 
and Ticonderoga and other sanguinary clashes, 
until, finally, mankind was electrified by the 
powerful Declaration of Independence penned 
by Thomas Jefferson, who himself acknowledged 
that he had drawn his inspiration from his Scotch 
instruction at William and Mary College. That 
was the step which could not be retraced by the 
men who took it, and, showing that they realized 
their personal peril, they wrote, as the concluding 
phrase of that famous document, "We mutually 
pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes, and 
our sacred honor." The war was on! 

In 1777, Lieutenant Colonel George Rogers 
Clark, a Scotchman, in command of the military 
establishment in that part of Virginia now known 
as Kentucky, went to his countryman, Patrick 
Henry, then governor of Virginia, with a well 
conceived plan to capture the Northwest Terri- 
tory, then nominally in control of the British. 
Governor Henry gave enthusiastic sanction to 
Clark's proposal, helped finance the expedition, 
and gave it his official co-operation. Inasmuch 
as the document is of such great importance in 
the history of Illinois, Governor Henry's order is 
given in full, as follows : 

Lieutenant Colonel George Rogers Clark: 

You are to proceed with all convenient speed to 
raise 7 companies of soldiers, to consist of 50 men 
each, officered in the usual manner, and armed most 
33 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

properly for the enterprise; and with this force at- 
tack the British force at Kaskaskia. It is conjectured 
that there are many pieces of cannon, and military 
stores to a considerable amount at that place, the 
taking and preservation of which would be a valu- 
able acquisition to the state. If you are so fortunate, 
therefore, as to succeed in your expedition, you will 
take every possible measure to secure the artillery 
and stores, and whatever many advantage the state. 
For the transportation of the troops, provisions, etc., 
down the Ohio, you are to apply to the command- 
ing officer at Fort Pitt for boats, and during the 
whole transaction you are to take especial care to 
keep the true destination of your force secret; its suc- 
cess depends upon this. Orders are, therefore, given 
to Captain Smith to secure the two men from Kas- 
kaskia. It is earnestly desired that you show human- 
ity to such British subjects and other persons as fall 
into your hands. If the white inhabitants of that post 
and neighborhood will give undoubted evidence of 
their attachment to this state, for it is certain they 
live within its limits, by taking the test prescribed by 
law, and by every other way and means in their 
power, let them be treated as fellow-citizens, and 
their persons and property be duly respected. As- 
sistance and protection against all enemies, what- 
ever, shall be afforded them, and the commonwealth 
of Virginia is pledged to accomplish it. But if these 
people will not accede to these reasonable demands, 
they must feel the consequences of war, under that 
direction of humanity that has hitherto distinguished 
Americans, and which it is expected you will ever 
consider as the rule of your conduct, and from which 
you are in no instance to depart. The corps you 
are to command are to receive the pay and allowance 
34 



THE BRITISH OCCUPATION 



of militia, and to act under the laws and regulations 
of this state now in force as to militia. The inhabi- 
tants of this post will be informed by you that in case 
they accede to the offers of becoming citizens of 
this commonwealth, a proper garrison will be main- 
tained among them, and every attention bestowed to 
render their commerce beneficial; the fairest pros- 
pects being opened to the dominions of France and 
Spain. It is in contemplation to establish a post near 
the mouth of the Ohio. Cannon will be wanted to 
fortify it. Part of those at Kaskaskia will be easily 
brought thither, or otherwise secured as circum- 
stances make necessary. You are to apply to General 
Hand, at Pittsburg, for powder and lead necessary 
for this expedition. If he cannot supply it, the person 
who has that which Captain Sims brought from New 
Orleans can. Wishing you success, I am your humble 
servant, . P. HENRY." 

In accordance with these instructions, Clark 
raised an army of about two hundred men of the 
Daniel Boone type, armed with long rifles which 
they could use with deadly accuracy, and with 
long hunting knives in their belts, by which they 
were known and feared as the "Long Knives." 
Descending the Ohio river, his first stop was 
made at about the present site of Louisville, where 
he first announced to his hunter soldiers the 
object of the expedition. A few of the more 
timid deserted him at this place, leaving Clark 
with 150 men in his command, with which he 
floated down the Ohio to Fort Massac, where the 
flag of freedom was first unfurled in the North- 

35 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

west Territory and from which point Clark with 
his dauntless followers proceeded overland to 
Kaskaskia, which capitulated, July 4, 1778, with- 
out the shedding of a drop of blood. Following 
this most important victory he next struck at 
Fort Vincennes, which was captured with little 
more resistance than he met at Kaskaskia. In 
this way what are now the states of Illinois, 
Indiana, Ohio, Michigan and Wisconsin were 
added to the domain of the United States through 
the foresight and bravery of a canny Scot., 



36 



CHAPTER V 
PERIOD OF AMERICAN SETTLEMENT 

The immediate result of the achievement of 
Clark was the encouragement of immigration into 
the Territory he had conquered. Some of his fol- 
lowers settled there; others returning to their 
homes in Kentucky, told wonderful stories about 
the great American Bottoms which they had 
visited along the shore of the Mississippi river 
in the Illinois country. In those days the means 
of communication were slow and cumbersome 
and it required weeks, sometimes months, to give 
general circulation to a piece of news as important 
even as Clark's achievement, but the story was 
told until it was generally known throughout the 
southern colonies, the population of which was 
largely of Scotch origin. So as the years went by 
the descendants of the original Scotch settlers 
left the homes of their ancestors and poured 
through the passes of the Eastern mountain 
ranges on their way to the fertile lands in the 
Mississippi valley. Theodore Roosevelt, in his 
"Winning of the West," has this to say concern- 
ing those people : 

"Full credit has been awarded the Roundheads 
and the Cavaliers: nor have we been altogether blind 
37 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

to the deeds of the Hollander and the Hugenot; but 
it is doubtful if we have wholly realized the im- 
portance of the part played by that stern and virile 
people whose preachers taught the creed of Knox 
and Calvin. These representatives of the Covenant- 
ers were, in the West, almost what the Puritans were 
in the North, and more than the Cavaliers were in 
the South. They formed the kernel of the distinct- 
ively and intensely American stock who were pio- 
neers of our people in their march Westward." 

The first permanent American settlement in the 
Northwest Territory was made by a party which 
crossed the Alleghanies, came down the Ohio in a 
flat boat called The Ark, which they rowed up the 
Mississippi past Kaskaskia to a point on the Mis- 
sissippi in what is now the southern part of Mon- 
roe county, where they established a settlement 
which they named New Design. It was owing to 
the fact that the early American settlers went to 
the low, fertile timbered lands in Illinois border- 
ing on the Mississippi river that these lands were 
thereafter referred to as the American Bottoms. 

Through Clark's victory, directed and financed 
officially by Virginia, the whole Northwest Terri- 
tory came into the possession of Virginia by right 
of conquest; and in October, 1778, the Virginia 
Legislature passed an Act adding the Northwest 
Territory to the Virginia domains under the title, 
"County of Illinois," appointing Colonel Clark 
Military Commander of the whole western terri- 
tory, including Kentucky, and Colonel John Todd 

38 



PERIOD OF AMERICAN SETTLEMENT 

Lieutenant-Commandant of the County of Illi- 
nois. The military duties of both, however, pre- 
vented them from exercising many governmental 
functions in the territory, Todd losing his life at 
the battle of Blue Licks in 1782 in a conflict with 
hostile Indians. 

The end of the Revolutionary War came with 
the surrender of Cornwallis to General Washing- 
ton at Yorktown on October 19, 1781, but the 
treaty of peace was not finally signed until Sep- 
tember 3, 1783, under which an independent 
American nation was created out of our present 
territory east of the Mississippi, excepting Flor- 
ida, which was still under the jurisdiction of 
Spain. At the close of the war the colonies began 
agitating their several claims to the territory 
northwest of the Ohio river. Out of this agitation 
came the agreement that the claimants would all 
join in ceding the disputed territory to the gen- 
eral government for the general good, the deed of 
Virginia, which had the most valid claim to the 
territory, being signed September 13, 1786, by 
Thomas Jefferson and James Monroe. This terri- 
tory thus became the common tie which kept the 
colonies together in the critical period between 
the Revolutionary War and the establishment of 
our present government. That is what civiliza- 
tion owes to George Rogers Clark. 

The year 1787 gave birth to two historic events 
which were of vital importance, not only to the 

39 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

colonists but to all the people of the world who 
should live thereafter : one was the adoption in the 
Continental Congress of the famous Ordinance 
of the Territory Northwest of the Ohio river; 
the second was the work of the Constitutional 
Convention, of which George Washington was the 
presiding officer, and which gave to our people 
at the conclusion of its labors, on September 17, 
1787, our present Constitution, which England's 
great statesman, Gladstone, described as the most 
wonderful work ever stricken off at a given mo- 
ment from the brain and purpose of man. The 
ordinance of 1787 was made up of six articles, two 
of which, pregnant with mighty purpose, were as 
follows 

"III. Religion, morality and knowledge being 
necessary to good government and the happiness 
of mankind, schools and the means of education 
shall forever be encouraged. * * *" 

"VI. There shall be neither slavery nor involun- 
tary servitude in the said territory, otherwise than 
in the punishment of crime, whereof the party shall 
have been duly convicted.'* 

That was the charter of liberty for this beloved 
country. 

The Constitution, as recommended by the 
Convention of 1787, was adopted by a sufficient 
number of states in 1788 to put it in force, and the 
government for which it provided came into being 

40 



PERIOD OF AMERICAN SETTLEMENT _ 

with the inauguration of George Washington as 
President on April 30, 1789. 

Immediately following the adoption of the 
Ordinance of 1787, the Continental Congress had 
chosen Major General Arthur St. Clair, a Scotch- 
man, as first governor of the Northwest Terri- 
tory. Under this authority, St. Clair proceeded 
to Marietta, in what is now Ohio, where on July 
15, 1788, the first territorial government was or- 
ganized. On October 6, 1789, President Washing- 
ton wrote to Governor St. Clair as follows: "You 
will also proceed, as soon as you can, with safety, 
to execute the orders of the late Congress re- 
specting the inhabitants at Post Vincennes and at 
the Kaskaskias, and the other villages on the Mis- 
sissippi." Under this direction all of the settled 
southern portion of what is now the State of Illi- 
nois was erected into one county, the mother 
county of our state, which was named St. Clair 
in honor of its founder. Soon after this another 
division was made by a line drawn from the mouth 
of Mackinaw creek, where it empties into the Illi- 
nois river, to Fort Massac on the Ohio river, all 
the territory west of the line being called St. 
Clair county, and the territory east of the line 
was named Knox county. 

The orders of Congress to which Washington 
referred in his letter to St. Clair were that the 
possession and titles of the French who had be- 
come citizens should be confirmed. This was for 

41 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

the reason that up to this time there had been 
practically no civil government in the Illinois 
country, it being under the domination of the 
military establishment and the church. Local dis- 
putes were settled principally by the priest, and 
when it became necessary to administer punish- 
ment to evil doers the necessary discipline was 
administered by the military authorities. What 
judicial practice there was, was conducted at Ca- 
hokia where the court house, the first public build- 
ing in the Mississippi valley was erected in 1716. 
This old building may be seen today standing on 
the Wooded Island in Jackson Park in Chicago, 
just as it stood in old Cahokia for so many years. 
In 1795, St. Clair county was divided by a line 
running from the American settlement at New 
Design east to the Wabash river. The territory 
south of this line was named Randolph county in 
honor of Edmund Randolph, one of the leaders in 
the Constitutional Convention of 1787, and later 
Governor of Virginia. When this division was 
made, all the records pertaining to the southern 
division were removed from Cahokia to Kas- 
kaskia. 

The dawn of the nineteenth century discovered 
a profound change in the settlements in southern 
Illinois, not so much as to numbers, however, as 
to quality. There had been little if any increase 
in the number that were there 35 years before, 
when the British took possession of Fort Chartres 

42 



PERIOD OF AMERICAN SETTLEMENT 

and the territory it guarded, from which time the 
French population steadily dwindled away, the 
French settlers seeking the more congenial sur- 
roundings and associations of the lower Missis- 
sippi or across the river in the Spanish settlements. 
Anglo-Saxon immigration into the Mississippi 
valley had been slow, owing to the official opposi- 
tion of the British Government, and later to In- 
dian troubles which became so serious that Gen- 
eral "Mad Anthony" Wayne, an Ulster Scot, was 
placed in charge of the military operations against 
them. Under his direction the disturbances were 
soon quelled, and an agreement was reached in 
1795 with the Indians in the Treaty of Greenville, 
in which among other provisions, the confeder- 
ated tribes ceded to the United States a piece of 
land six miles square at the mouth of the Chicago 
river, which is now the heart of Chicago. As soon 
as this treaty was negotiated, the migration of 
whites into the Illinois country began in earnest 
and has continued to this day. 

From 1800 to 1809, this State lost its identity as 
Illinois, because, during that period it was a part 
of the territory of Indiana, which was created by 
Congress out of the Northwest Territory. Dur- 
ing this period many things took place which were 
of vast importance in the development of the new 
country. In 1803, the great Louisiana territory 
was purchased from France, and thereby the west- 
ern frontier of the United States was moved from 

43 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

the Mississippi River to the Rocky Mountains. 
In 1804, Fort Dearborn was built on the Chicago 
River near Lake Michigan, at a point where 
Michigan Avenue now crosses the river. In the 
same year Lewis and Clark, the latter a brother of 
George Rogers Clark, started from Illinois on the 
celebrated expedition up the Missouri River to its 
headwaters, over the Rocky Mountains to the Pa- 
cific, the final result of which was to move the 
western boundary of the United States to the Pa- 
cific Ocean and to add the territory now included 
in the States of Oregon and Washington to our 
growing domain. 



44 



CHAPTER VI 
ILLINOIS AS A TERRITORY 

In 1809 Congress divided the Indiana territory 
so as to make a separate territory out of the do- 
main lying west of the Wabash River and of a line 
from Vincennes north to the Canadian boundary. 
The name Illinois was given the new territory, 
and the seat of government was established at 
Kaskaskia, the territory including what is now 
Illinois, Wisconsin and most of the northern pen- 
insula of Michigan. Nine days after the Act of 
Congress was approved which created the Illinois 
territory Abraham Lincoln was born in Ken- 
tucky; and on the same day my father was born 
in North Carolina. 

The first governor of the new territory was 
Ninian Edwards, and the first secretary was Na- 
thaniel Pope. The population of the territory 
at the time of its organization was about 10,000 
persons, exclusive of the Indians. Settlements 
had been made in central Illinois some distance 
north of the old Cahokia settlement, and up the 
Ohio River as far as Shawneetown, which derived 
its name from the Shawnee Indians, and which in 
its early days was the most pretentious settlement 
in the new territory. For many years and up to 

45 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

the building of the Illinois railroads, about the 
middle of the nineteenth century, it was the point 
at which travelers down the Ohio disembarked to 
proceed from thence to their new homes in 
southern Illinois. 

Immigration was again retarded by our second 
war with Great Britain, the war of 1812. A favor- 
ite mode of warfare on the part of the English 
was to stir up the resentment of the American In- 
dians against the white settlers, who were artfully 
represented as intruders who harbored only ill 
will and evil intentions toward the red men. At 
that time, the territory between the present city of 
East St. Louis and Chicago was nothing but a 
beautiful wilderness dominated entirely by the 
Indians, who had not yet become reconciled to the 
presence of the paleface, the echo of whose ax in 
the forests prophesied the ruination of the hunt- 
ing grounds. The Indians of northern Illinois, 
taking advantage of the solitary situation of the 
meager garrison at Fort Dearborn, which had been 
established at the mouth of the Chicago River in 
1804, planned to exterminate it. This unfriendly 
disposition coming to the knowledge of Governor 
Hull, Commander-in-chief of the Northwest, then 
located with his army at Fort Wayne, he dis- 
patched orders to Captain Heald, the Command- 
ant at Fort Dearborn, to withdraw with his garri- 
son to Fort Wayne. The Captain, instead of with- 
drawing quickly and quietly, set about to make a 

46 



ILLINOIS AS A TERRITORY 



deal with the Indians whereby, in exchange for 
the munitions and provisions at the Fort, the In- 
dians were to furnish guides and escorts for the 
garrison to Fort Wayne. After making this agree- 
ment and reflecting upon the mischief which 
might result from the liquor among his provi- 
sions, he had the casks broken and their contents 
emptied into the river. This coming to the atten- 
tion of the Indians greatly enraged them, one of 
their chiefs informing Captain Heald that the 
white men would be made to suffer for breaking 
their agreement with the Indians. Notwithstand- 
ing this warning, the garrison sallied forth with 
fife and drum on the morning of August 15, 1812, 
to begin their journey to Fort Wayne. They had 
proceeded less than two miles along the shore of 
the lake when they were set upon by the Indians, 
who massacred more than half of the party and 
who distributed the remainder among the neigh- 
boring Indian tribes as prisoners. The approxi- 
mate location of the massacre is marked now by a 
bronze monument on 18th Street in Chicago, 
near the George M. Pullman home, and just west 
of the Illinois Central Railway. 

On the day following the Fort Dearborn mas- 
sacre, General Hull ignominiously surrendered to 
the British his forces at Detroit, leaving the 
Northwest Territory in possession of the enemy 
with the exception of two forts in Indiana. A few 
years prior to this, block houses had been erected 

47 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

in Illinois in the neighborhood of white settlers 
to which these could repair in case of danger from 
the Indians. These rude and simple fortresses 
were hastily placed in a state of defense. Prac- 
tically defenseless, the situation in the Illinois 
country at the beginning of 1813 was anything 
but inviting, but during the year the outlook be- 
came more encouraging with the victory of Com- 
modore Perry on Lake Erie, the recovery of De- 
troit, and the decisive defeat of the British and 
Indian allies at the battle of the Thames, where 
the mighty chieftain, Tecumseh, fell mortally 
wounded. 

In the following year the famous Indian chief- 
tain, Black Hawk, appeared on the scene in the 
Illinois territory, making his debut in an attack 
upon Prairie du Chien, a settlement on the upper 
Mississippi. Out of that conflict the whites es- 
caped with a loss of twenty-five and made their 
way down the river to St. Louis. Following this 
an expedition was fitted out in Illinois under the 
command of Zachary Taylor (afterwards Presi- 
dent of the United States) which had for its pur- 
pose the conquest or annihilation of the unfriend- 
ly Indians to the north. This expedition, how- 
ever, ended in disaster, and the people of the Illi- 
nois territory were greatly pleased when the war 
ended at the close of that year. 

By the fall of 1812, there had been a total of five 
counties organized in Illinois, four of which, St. 

48 



ILLINOIS AS A TERRITORY 



Clair, Randolph, Johnson and Gallatin, were 
south of a line drawn from St. Louis to Vincennes. 
All the territory north of this line was named 
Madison County in honor of President James 
Madison. In September, 1812, an election was 
held to choose a territorial legislature and a dele- 
gate to represent the territory in Congress. The 
delegate to Congress chosen in this election was 
Shadrack Bond, of St. Clair County, afterward 
first Governor of the State of Illinois. 

The territorial legislature, consisting of twelve 
members, convened at Kaskaskia on November 25 
of that year, and it is recorded that the whole leg- 
islature lived with one family, boarding and lodg- 
ing in one room. Imagine an Illinois legislature 
of our day living in one room! The punishments 
prescribed by that legislature for crimes and 
misdemeanors included the death penalty for sev- 
eral different offenses, public whippings, confine- 
ments in stocks and in the pillory, branding with 
hot irons, imprisonment and fines. 

The funds to pay the expenses of the territorial 
government were raised by taxation of the fertile 
lands in the river bottoms at the annual rate of one 
cent per acre. Those who were not so fortunate 
as to own bottom lands were assessed seventy-five 
cents per hundred acres on their "second rate" or 
prairie lands. Under this law the assessments 
amounted to about $5,000, only half of which was 
paid into the treasury. 

49 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

In 1814, Shadrack Bond resigned his position as 
delegate in Congress from the Illinois Territory 
to take a position as receiver of public money at 
Kaskaskia, and was succeeded in Congress by 
Benjamin Stephenson of Randolph County. In 
1816, Nathaniel Pope, of Kaskaskia, was elected 
delegate in Congress. Nathaniel Pope was one of 
the ablest lawyers of his time and it was fortunate 
for the State of Illinois that he was our delegate 
to Congress at the time the Act was passed which 
provided for the admission of Illinois as a state. 
In the Act as originally drawn, the northern 
boundary of Illinois was fixed as an east and west 
line tangent to the extreme south end of Lake 
Michigan. Judge Pope, recognizing the future 
value of a frontage on Lake Michigan, opposed 
fixing the boundary as the bill provided and se- 
cured thereby an agreement fixing the northern 
boundary at its present location. This saved 
Chicago, the lead mines of Galena and fourteen 
of our richest counties to the State of Illinois. 

The Act of Congress providing for the admis- 
sion of Illinois as a state became a law April 18, 
1818, and in July of that same year a convention 
assembled at Kaskaskia to draft the first constitu- 
tion. This convention concluded its important 
work in about one month, and the first election 
under it was held in the latter part of September, 
1818. In this election Shadrack Bond was chosen 
as the first Governor and Pierre Menard, Lieuten- 

50 



ILLINOIS AS A TERRITORY 



ant-Governor, for terms of four years. Under 
that constitution the legislature was all powerful, 
and the convention which adopted it apparently 
were so well satisfied with their work that they 
did not deem it necessary or expedient that the 
proposed constitution should be submitted to the 
people who were to be bound by it. A reason for 
this may be found in the fact that the enabling 
Act of Congress had provided that the govern- 
ment when formed "shall be republican, and not 
repugnant to the ordinance of the 13th of July, 
1787," in conformity with which a provision was 
inserted in the Constitution declaring that 
"neither slavery nor involuntary servitude shall 
hereafter be introduced into this state," and pro- 
viding further for the emancipation of slaves 
brought into Illinois from other states. Inasmuch 
as the original settlement of Illinois was from the 
southern states, it may have been feared by the 
men who wrote our first constitution that a ma- 
jority of the electorate at that time might be 
found in sympathy with the peculiar southern in- 
stitution of slavery, and refuse to approve a con- 
stitution which abolished slavery in this state. If 
such a fear did exist, it was without foundation, 
because a contest arose immediately after the 
adoption of the constitution which came to issue 
six years later, the result of which showed the 
anti-slavery party in a majority. 



51 



CHAPTER VII 
MIGRATION OF THE McLEANS 

Having set the stage, as it were, in the Illinois 
country, let us review the situation in the col- 
onies on the seaboard and fix as briefly as possible 
the landmarks of history as there recorded. In 
doing so we shall find that in the southern col- 
onies, including Virginia, the Carolinas and 
Georgia, a condition had arisen to which the 
descendants of the early Scotch settlers could 
not be reconciled. That people originally, like the 
Pilgrim fathers, had quit their homes across the 
sea because their own liberty had been abridged ; 
and this innate love of personal freedom had been 
so ingrained in the character of their descendants 
that they could not be indifferent to the institu- 
tion in their midst which consigned the negro to 
perpetual bondage. 

It was a strange coincidence that about the 
same time the Pilgrims landed from the May- 
flower on Plymouth Rock to found the old Bay 
Colony, which was later Massachusetts, the first 
load of African negroes were unloaded at James- 
town in Virginia, to be sold into slavery to the 
southern planters, who, as Cavaliers at the Eng- 

52 



MIGRATION OF THE McLEANS 

lish Court, had been taught to regard labor as 
beneath the dignity of a gentleman. Thus were 
the two irreconcilable elements, which later were 
to reach their fruition in the greatest civil war 
of history, transplanted to these shores. The 
negroes by nature were adaptable to the southern 
climate, they were wholly unsuited to the rigor- 
ous climate of the north. The northern colonists 
were agriculturalists; while the early southern 
colonists were anything but that. So it was only 
natural that the institution of slavery should take 
root and grow in the congenial surroundings of 
the south where it had been recognized as a local 
institution one hundred years before the Scotch 
came. 

In communities where slave labor was not ab- 
solutely necessary for development of latent re- 
sources, a sentiment had grown up by the time of 
the American Revolution, after one hundred and 
fifty years of slavery, that the institution was a 
cancer in our body politic which ultimately must 
be removed. It is known, for instance, that 
George Washington and Thomas Jefferson were 
for gradual emancipation of the slaves, and their 
views doubtless would have been written into the 
Constitution when it was framed had it not been 
for the determined opposition of South Carolina 
and Georgia, whose delegates in the convention 
served notice that their States would not approve 
a Constitution which did not protect slavery. It 

53 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

was necessary to have the Carolinas and Georgia 
in order to have a Union under the Constitution, 
so one of the important compromises of the con- 
vention, which afterward was characterized by 
William Lloyd Garrison as "a league with the 
devil and a covenant with hell/' was agreed upon, 
through which the slave trade was extended for a 
period of twenty years and the provision known 
as the fugitive slave law was included. It was 
significant, however, of the general sentiment of 
the time that the words "slave" or "slavery" were 
not allowed to appear in the Constitution. 

Even with the new lease of life which the Con- 
stitution gave to slavery, the sentiment of that 
time was so strong against the unholy system that 
it would have fallen into gradual decay and ulti- 
mate dissolution had it not been for the invention 
of the cotton gin in 1793 by Eli Whitney, a New 
England yankee, who was teaching school in 
Georgia and was thus made acquainted with the 
great problem in cotton culture of separating the 
fiber and the seed. When done by hand, the opera- 
tion was slow and laborious to such an extent that 
there was little profit in the industry, but Whit- 
ney's invention multiplied by fifty-fold the output 
of a slave and thereby made the slave more profit- 
able and therefore more desirable than he had ever 
been before. As weighed against the golden har- 
vest he could then produce, the right of the slave 
to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness did 

54 



MIGRATION OF THE McLEANS 

not count for much; so the sons and daughters 
of the old Covenanters, my people among them, 
were brought to an understanding of the fact that 
their hopes for emancipation could not yet be 
realized, and that they would have to live with the 
hated traffic under their eyes if they remained in 
that country. The ownership of slaves gradually 
produced a social condition under which the cus- 
toms in the slave holding communities were be- 
coming luxurious; the slave owners, of course, 
were exempted from the necessity of labor, and 
those of modest means were sorely oppressed by 
taxes. 

In these parlous times an incident happened 
in our family which led to the removal of nearly 
all of my people from North Carolina to the great 
Northwest Territory, where it had been decreed 
that slavery should not exist. My grandfather 
had a relative of the name of MacDonald, but who, 
because of the fact that there was a dissolute 
Irishman in the community of the name of Mc- 
Donnell with whom MacDonald was often con- 
fused, went to the Legislature and had the Mac 
stricken off his name so that he was thereafter 
known as Donald. This man could not become 
reconciled to the institution of slavery. One day, 
when he was in the vicinity of the courthouse, he 
saw a public auction where human beings were 
offered for sale, "and maidens piled, like car- 
cassed hogs, before the buyers' view." It hap- 

55 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

pened that he knew an attractive mulatto girl who 
was placed on the block and offered for sale. The 
liberties which some of the prospective buyers 
present took with the girl's person so disgusted 
Donald that he went immediately to his home and 
had his wife help him prepare for a trip into the 
Northwest Territory, to seek a home where he 
would not have to witness such sights as he had 
just seen. Starting immediately, he made the trip 
on horseback through the Cumberland Gap, over 
the "dark and bloody" ground of Kentucky, and 
on to Kaskaskia, where he took the precaution to 
inquire of the Territorial Governor, Ninian Ed- 
wards, and others in authority in the Illinois 
country, whether Illinois would be a slave state 
or free. On being assured that slavery would not 
exist in the state, he went on up the old road to 
Cahokia and beyond there to a place near the 
present site of Greenville, where he settled on a 
piece of land in what is now Bond County, which 
was so named in honor of Shadrach Bond, the first 
Governor of our State. The wife of Donald was 
a daughter of William McLean, one of the two 
brothers who had moved from the banks of the 
Schuylkill River in Pennsylvania to North Caro- 
lina. She was born during the last term of George 
Washington's administration and lived until into 
the administration of Benjamin Harrison, dying 
about 1890. Their descendants still live around 
Greenville and Decatur in this state. 

56 



MIGRATION OF THE McLEANS 

After Donald had staked out his claim and 
erected a cabin to shelter his family, he went back 
to North Carolina to get them and bring them 
back to God's country. When he returned to 
North Carolina he carried glowing accounts of the 
great American bottoms and the fertile uplands 
which .were waiting in the Northwest Territory. 
My grandfather, Robert McLean, was readily con- 
verted to the idea and forthwith started with his 
family to seek a new home in the new country. I 
do not know what determined him to do so, but 
it is a fact that he first settled in Indiana, not f^r 
from Fort Vincennes. He remained there, how- 
ever, only a year or two, and then moved on into 
the Illinois country along the trail which George 
Rogers Clark had followed between Kaskaskia 
and Vincennes, until he came into the neighbor- 
hood of a block house in the Jourden settlement, 
where he made a permanent settlement in what is 
known as Knob Prairie, Franklin county, about 
nine miles east of the present site of Benton. 

The migration of the McLeans was not an iso- 
lated instance, but rather a clean-cut type of a 
general movement or exodus from the southern 
colonies when it became apparent that the curse 
of human slavery had fastened its tentacles upon 
the southern seaboard social system. In the latter 
half of the previous century, Daniel Boone had 
pointed the way out by his exploration and sub- 
jugation of the western part of Virginia laying 

57 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

between the Blue Ridge mountains and the Mis- 
sissippi river, which is now the beautiful state of 
Kentucky. The ancestors of Abraham Lincoln, 
influenced, I am sure, by the conditions which de- 
termined my people to move, had followed Boone 
over the mountains ; and it was from these people 
that the Great Emancipator drew his early in- 
spirations and ideals. Some of those who fled 
from a social organization which was unbearable, 
made their homes in the Appalachian mountain 
range, where their descendants are living unto 
this day. The foundation of a great university to 
minister to the intellectual needs of this people 
has been established at Cumberland Gap, and is 
appropriately named the Lincoln Memorial Uni- 
versity. In 1917, the anniversary of the birth of 
Lincoln was celebrated at the University, at which 
were present many noted men who gathered there 
to eulogize the kingly rail splitter. As illustrat- 
ing the movement which I have described, I take 
the liberty of quoting from the speech of Mayor 
William Hale Thompson, of Chicago, as follows: 

"The grandfather of President Lincoln moved 
from Virginia into what is now the State of Ken- 
tucky only a few years after Daniel Boone blazed 
the way for civilization through this identical 
Cumberland Gap, and within a year after George 
Rogers Clark had, by conquest, added the terri- 
tory north of the Ohio river to the domain of the 
United States. The people who thus followed the 
early explorers into the new country were hardy, 
58 



MIGRATION OF THE McLEANS 

courageous Americans, descended from the first 
white settlers on this continent. It was this pio- 
neer stock which peopled the hills and valleys 
of the Appalachian range, and it is among their 
descendants who still live there that we find the 
purest strain of native-bred white men that is 
produced in America. It was Abraham Lincoln's 
intimate knowledge of this people, their habits of 
life and their mental processes which enabled 
him to prophecy with such unerring accuracy 
that they would be found to sympathize with his 
purposes." 



59 



CHAPTER VIII 
ILLINOIS A HUNDRED YEARS AGO 

A knowledge of history is indispensable to a 
just appreciation and understanding of the 
present; for is not today the child of yesterday, 
and all our to-morrows the offspring of to-day? It 
is for this good and sufficient reason that I 
thought it well to review the early history of our 
proud commonwealth, in which is written so much 
of the nation's glory. What I have thus far re- 
corded are facts of history accessible to all the 
beacon lights along the road to civilization in the 
Mississippi valley. The narrative now approaches 
that period in Illinois which I am able to describe 
as being within my experience or as having been 
told to me by those who lived in the times which 
my story covers. In this connection it is well to 
remember that my father was born on the same 
day as Abraham Lincoln in 1809, the year which 
the Territory of Illinois was created by Congress, 
and that he was brought to Illinois, when nine 
years old, by his father, who moved into the State 
in 1818, the year Illinois was admitted to the 
Union. 

When Illinois was organized as a Territory in 
60 



ILLINOIS A HUNDRED YEARS AGO 

1809, with the seat of government at old Kaskas- 
kia, there were but two organized counties in the 
Territory, St. Clair and Randolph, which includ- 
ed the entire area of the Territory with a popula- 
tion of about 12,000. The Ordinance of 1787 had 
provided that not less than three states should be 
made out of the Northwest Territory, and a terri- 
tory should be eligible for admission as a state 
when it attained a population of 60,000. The act 
of Congress providing for the admission of Illi- 
nois provided for a population of only 40,000, 
which was evidently carefully estimated by our 
Delegate in Congress, Nathaniel Pope, as the 
United States census returns for 1820 show a total 
population in Illinois at about 55,000, which is 
about one-third the present population of the 
ward in Chicago in which I live. Ninety-five per 
cent of the population in 1820 was of English 
descent, as distinguished from the early French 
settlers, and, with but very few exceptions, had 
come in from the southern states just as my ances- 
tors did. To this day, one may discover in the 
dialect and customs of the typical southern Illi- 
noisans their extraction and descent from their 
southern ancestors. 

On December 3rd, 1818, Congress approved the 
Constitution adopted by the Illinois Convention 
by the passage of a resolution which declared 
Illinois to be "one of the United States of 
America, and admitted into the Union on an equal 

61 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

footing with the original States in all respects." 
At that time the State was divided into fifteen 
counties, organized in the following order: St. 
Clair, April 27, 1790; Randolph, October 5, 1795; 
Madison, Gallatin and Johnson, September 14, 
1812; Edwards, November 28, 1814; White, Decem- 
ber 9, 1815; Monroe, January 6, 1816; Jackson 
and Pike, January 10, 1816; Crawford, December 
31, 1816; Bond, January 4, 1817; Union, Wash- 
ington and Franklin, on January 2, 1818. As may 
be observed by a reference to a map of Illinois, 
all these counties are in the southern portion of 
the state, and at that time all the settlements in 
Illinois were south of the 39th degree of north 
latitude which crosses the State just north of Van- 
dalia. To the north of this line, up to the parallel 
of 42 degrees and 30 minutes north latitude, our 
northern boundary, there was nothing in the way 
of a settlement worth mentioning. 

Those who have lived only in the period of ease 
and luxury which we are now enjoying can 
scarcely appreciate the hardships and dangers of 
the early pioneer days. In those days before the 
railroads were thought of, all the commerce of 
the country worthy of the name was carried on the 
navigable waterways in flat boats which were al- 
lowed to float with the current down stream or 
going up stream were towed from the bank like 
a canal boat or pushed along with long poles 
operated from the boat. It is true that at the 

62 



ILLINOIS A HUNDRED YEARS AGO 

time of my father's birth, Fulton's steamboat was 
in operation on the Hudson River, and, two years 
after his birth a steamboat was put in operation 
on the Ohio, but it was not until the fall of 1817, 
the year before he moved to Illinois, that the 
steamboat "General Pike" ascended the Missis- 
sippi above the mouth of the Ohio. That was 
the key to the development of t}ie Missis- 
sippi valley, and from the time that steam power 
was effectively employed in transportation the 
future of this wonderful country was assured. 
Within my life that water borne commerce de- 
veloped to its greatest extent, and I have lived 
to see it decline to a negligible quantity and to 
give way to rail commerce, which had its begin- 
ning at the time of my birth. 

Overland commerce of that time was even more 
cumbersome than water-borne commerce. From 
the river settlements like Shawneetown, Vin- 
cennes, Kaskaskia and St. Louis, "trails" led back 
inland, along which the newly arrived settlers 
pushed their way back farther and farther into 
the interior. They did not ride in high powered 
automobiles, as now, over hard surfaced roads, 
but picked their way cautiously through the dense 
woods of the river bottoms, carefully avoided the 
swampy low lands where their wagons would sink 
up to the axles in the soft, spongy ground. They 
travelled as a rule in crude "prairie schooners," 
covered wagons drawn by oxen, and as this was at 

63 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

once their conveyance and their bed, it fairly 
may be said to have been the forerunner of the 
Pullman car of to-day. 

It was in this primitive fashion that my grand- 
father, in 1818, at which time my father was nine 
years old, journeyed from Indiana into the Illi- 
nois country, choosing a location in a beautiful 
prairie in Franklin County as his permanent 
home. From a brochure published by Quincy 
E. Browning entitled "Franklin County, By One 
of Its Sons," I make the following excerpts re- 
lating to the early settlement and history of the 
county : 

"The first settlement of Franklin County dates 
back to 1804 when John and William Browning, 
Joseph Estes, three brothers named Jordan, and 
William Babrey took up their abode and built a 'fort' 
two miles southeast of Thompsonville on the farm 
occupied in later years by William Elstun. * * * 
In 1812, while out gathering wood, Babrey was am- 
bushed and killed by Indians. He was the first white 
person buried in Franklin County, and his grave is 
still to be seen on the site of the old fort. Another 
interesting event occurred at this fort. In 1810, the 
wife of John Browning gave birth to twin boys, 
James K. and William R. Browning. These were the 
first white children born in Franklin County." 

As originally constituted by the Territorial 
Legislature on January 2, 1818, Franklin County 
included, in addition to its present area, what is 
now Williamson County. It had been succes- 

64 



ILLINOIS A HUNDRED YEARS AGO 

sively an integral portion of St. Clair, Randolph 
and White Counties. The home of Moses Gar- 
ret, in Frankfort Township, was the first 
seat of government and continued as such 
until old Frankfort was made the county seat. 
In 1839, Williamson County was made out of the 
southern portion of Franklin County, and the 
county seat of the latter was thereupon moved 
to its present location at Benton. 

I assume that my grandfather was influenced 
to settle in Franklin County by the fact that rela- 
tives of his of the name of Aiken had just recent- 
ly settled there, going directly from their homes 
in North Carolina. A family tradition has it 
that the Aikens were originally McLeans but had 
separated from the clan and taken up their abode 
in a beautiful valley named Eiken, from which 
they came to be known as Eikens, which in time 
became Aiken. There is no question that the 
families were interrelated prior to the time they 
came to Illinois, as is indicated in the middle 
name of my father and the further fact that the 
McLeans and the Aikens appeared in Franklin 
County at about the same time. 

Among the early settlers in that portion of 
the state was a family of the name of Hall, re- 
lated to Lyman Hall-, one of the signers of the 
Declaration of Independence. These people 
originally were from Georgia, but this branch of 
the family had moved into Kentucky shortly after 

65 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

Daniel Boone had blazed a path for civilization, 
and, following the tendency of migration, moved 
into Illinois about the time my grandfather did, 
settling in Hamilton County a few miles east of 
the location of my people. My sister Julia, seven 
years older than I, married H. W. Hall of this 
family about 1848. This brother-in-law of mine 
served as a sergeant in the Mexican War, as a 
Colonel in the Army of the Tennessee in the Civil 
War, and has five grandsons and a nephew who 
are commissioned officers in the present war. At 
the time this is written, at the middle of the year 
1918, he is still active mentally and physically at 
the age of 92. He and his wife had a very happy 
and contented and, withal, a very unusual matri- 
monial experience. She lived to the good old 
age of eighty-seven, passing peacefully away with 
the year 1917, during the Christmas holidays. At 
the time she died they had lived together through 
nearly seventy years of happy married life, rais- 
ing a large family of splendid children, among 
whom are some of the best and most favorably 
known men in southern Illinois, notably Doctor 
Andy Hall, of Mt. Vernon. At the time of my 
sister's death, she and her husband were main- 
taining as a matter of independent choice, their 
own little home in which she did all the house- 
work. 

Colonel Hall, it will be noted, is within eight 
years as old as the State of Illinois, which cele- 

66 



ILLINOIS A HUNDRED YEARS AGO 

brates its one-hundredth birthday this year. That 
hundred years in Illinois has covered a develop- 
ment which is almost inconceivable. If my 
younger readers would faintly realize the im- 
provement made in that time, let them look at a 
present -day map of Illinois and fix their attention 
on the line of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad 
running from St. Louis to Vincennes. One hun- 
dred years ago practically all the white in- 
habitants of the state lived south of that line; so 
that within that hundred years all the farms and 
all the towns north of that line have been estab- 
lished and settled, including Chicago, Peoria and 
Springfield, our State Capital. When the read- 
er contemplates further that one hundred years 
ago there was not a mile of railroad, not a single 
factory, not a mowing machine, not a sewing 
machine, not an electric light, not a gas light and 
not even a kerosene lamp in all this vast territory, 
he will then be approaching the mental attitude 
necessary to appreciate the wonderful achieve- 
ments and the wonderful advancement made up to 
this time. Truly it has been a wonderful age ! 



67 



CHAPTER IX 

SENATOR JOHN McLEAN 

When Illinois was admitted to the Union it was 
entitled under the Constitution to two United 
States Senators, but as its representation in the) 
lower house was based on population, it was en- 
titled only to one representative in Congress, and 
remained as one congressional district for four- 
teen years after Illinois became a State, or until 
about the time that Chicago was organized. Since 
that time our population has grown until the state 
has twenty-seven members in the I^ower House 
of Congress, twelve of which represent constitu- 
encies which are wholly or in part within the city 
limits of Chicago. 

Our first United States Senators were Judge 
Jesse B. Thomas, one of the Federal judges of 
the Territory of Illinois and who was the pre- 
siding officer of the convention which formulated 
and adopted the first State Constitution; and 
Ninian Edwards, who was Governor of Illinois 
during the time it was a territory. Apparently 
there was no contest over the senatorships nor 
on the governorship, to which Shadrack Bond was 
elected without opposition, and in the same way 

68 



SENATOR JOHN McLEAN 



Pierre Menard was elected Lieutenant-Governor ; 
but for the honor of representing Illinois as its 
sole Congressman in the National House of Rep- 
resentatives there was a memorable contest be- 
tween John McLean, one of my kinsmen, and 
Daniel P. Cook, who was accounted the most 
popular man in Illinois, whose claim to that dis- 
tinction was strengthened later by the fact that 
he defeated Shadrack Bond, in 1824, for the office 
of Congressman. McLean defeated Cook in Sep- 
tember, 1818, but was defeated by Cook two years 
later in another contest for the prize. 

John McLean, for whom I was named, was born 
in North Carolina on February 4, 1791. He was 
raised and educated in Kentucky and moved into 
Illinois Territory in 1815, settling at Shawnee- 
town where he studied and later practiced law. 
The first public office which he held was that of 
prosecuting attorney. He was a man of large 
physique and commanding figure, and acquired 
an enviable reputation as a trial lawyer in which 
occupation he attended the sessions of the differ- 
ent courts in southern Illinois, thus extending his 
acquaintance and influence. That he was a man 
of considerable popularity was demonstrated in 
his defeat of Daniel P. Cook for the honor of 
first representing the State of Illinois in the Na- 
tional Congress, taking his seat December 4, 1818, 
and serving until March 3, 1819. 

The following year he was elected to the Illi- 
69 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

nois Legislature, that being the Second General 
Assembly, over which he presided as Speaker of 
the House during the latter half of Shadrack 
Bond's administration. During that session the 
question came up of establishing a state bank with 
authority to emit or issue bills of credit or its own 
money, paying a nominal annual interest. The 
part taken by John McLean in that controversy 
is told as follows by Davidson and Stuve in their 
History of Illinois : 

"The legislature were not unadvised of their in- 
fatuation. John McLean, subsequently a senator in 
Congress, was speaker of the house. He was opposed 
to the measure, and his power as a forcible debater 
was justly dreaded by the bank men. It is rulable 
to debate all important bills in committee of the 
whole, that the speaker may participate. To avoid 
an arraignment of their bantling by him, the bank 
majority resorted to the trick of refusing to go into 
committee of the whole. Burning with indignation at 
such treatment, he promptly resigned the speaker- 
ship, and taking the floor, denounced in scathing 
terms the expensive folly of the scheme, presaged the 
injurious results which must inevitably flow from its 
passage, involving creditors in ruin and the State in 
bankruptcy. But it was pre-determined to pass the 
bill, which was done over the veto by the requisite 
majority. The issues of the bank did not long remain 
at par; as their worthlessness became apparent, good 
money was driven out of circulation. This was par- 
ticularly so with small coins, and it became so difficult 
to make change that bills had to be cut in two. By 
various steps, they depreciated to 25 cents on the 
70 



SENATOR JOHN McLEAN 



dollar; and with this worthless State currency were 
the people cursed for a period exceeding four years. 
By the year 1824, the depreciation had the effect to 
almost impede the wheels of government." 

When Ninian Edwards resigned as United 
States Senator in 1824 to accept an appointment 
as Minister to Mexico, John McLean was elected 
to fill the unexpired term, taking his seat in the 
Senate on December 20, 1824. Elias Kent Kane 
of Kaskaskia was elected to succeed Edwards, 
taking his seat in the Nineteenth Congress for 
the term beginning March 4, 1825. 

In 1826 the political power of Daniel P. Cook 
was broken, he being beaten in that year for re- 
election to Congress by Joseph Duncan, of Jack- 
son County, with whom my father had served in 
Blackhawk's War and who later became Governor 
of the State. In his palmy days Cook had de- 
feated the strongest men in public life, including 
John McLean, Elias Kent Kane and Shadrack 
Bond, but he had, by 1826, entered a physical 
and political decline which, combined, resulted 
in his death about a year after his defeat by Dun- 
can. Illustrating how little our average citizen 
knows about the history of our state, I will ven- 
ture the assertion that not more than one out of 
a hundred of our people know that it was for 
Daniel P. Cook that our great County of Cook, 
in which Chicago is situated, was named. 

In the 1826 election in which Cook went down 
71 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

to defeat Ninian Edwards, who had resigned as 
Minister to Mexico on account of a quarrel with 
the Secretary of the Treasury, was elected Gov- 
ernor, and John McLean was elected to the Illi- 
nois House of Representatives, over which he 
again presided as Speaker. He was again elected 
in 1828, and again selected as Speaker; but dur- 
ing this term he was elected to the United States 
Senate for the six-year term beginning March 4, 
1829, but died in office on October 14, 1830. His 
tomb may be seen today in the old Westwood 
Cemetery in Shawneetown, the inscription on the 
marble slab reading as follows: 

"IN 

MEMORY OF 
JOHN McLEAN 

BORN IN N. CAROLINA, FEB. 4, 1791, 
HE WAS RAISED AND EDUCATED IN 

KENTUCKY 

WHENCE HE IMMIGRATED TO ILLINOIS 

IN 1815, WHERE HE HELD A CONSPICUOUS 

STAND AT THE BAR AND IN SOCIETY 

FOR TALENTS AND A GENEROUS AND 

AMIABLE NATURE. 
A REPRESENTATIVE AND SENATOR 

IN THE CONGRESS OF THE U. S. 

FROM ILLINOIS, HE DIED WHILE IN 

THE LATTER OFFICE, OCT. 14, 1830 

LAMENTED BY ALL." 

72 



SENATOR JOHN McLEAN 



Alexander Parrish, in his Historic Illinois, The 
Romance of the Earlier Days, has the following 
to say of John McLean : 

"John McLean, of Shawneetown, elected to the 
Senate in 1824, to succeed Edwards, was in many 
respects the most gifted man of his period in Illinois. 
Born in North Carolina in 1791, he came to Shawnee- 
town as a young lawyer of twenty-three, and was 
soon prominent both at the bar and in political life. 
Three years later, he was elected to Congress after a 
campaign strangely marked by courtesy between 
himself and his opponent, Daniel P. Cook. Hitherto 
frontier politics had been fought with bitter person- 
alities. He was also frequently a member of the 
legislature, and once Speaker of the House, but never 
forgot to remain a gentleman, even on the "stump." 
McLean was a born orator, a large man, finely pro- 
portioned, with light complexion, and frank, open 
face. Men instinctively felt confidence in him, while 
his eloquence swayed them at his will. His death, 
which occurred in the very prime of his manhood, at 
thirty-nine, was considered a great public loss, and 
the legislature, in memory of his signal services, 
named a county of the State in his honor.*' 

Thus did McLean, the banner agricultural 
county of Illinois, get its name. In addition to 
being the banner agricultural county in Illinois 
and third in the United States, with its products 
approximating thirteen million dollars in value 
per annum, its chief city, Bloomington, is the 
seat of the Northern Illinois Normal. The name 
also is perpetuated in McLeansboro, the county 

73 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

seat of Hamilton County, but a few miles to the 
east of our old homestead located in Franklin 
County. 

Besides the things heretofore mentioned in this 
chapter, John McLean participated in most of the 
history-making events of his time. He was a 
member of the State Legislature when, in 1820, 
the capital was removed from old Kaskaskia to 
Vandalia, where it was to remain for twenty 
years. On the occasion of the removal of the capi- 
tal, all the archives of the state government were 
moved from Kaskaskia to Vandalia in one wagon. 
Imagine, if you can, and contrast the job of re- 
moving our state capital now, and the attending 
confusion. 

The removal of the capital upstate a distance 
of ninety or a hundred miles was a significant in- 
dication of the trend of settlement and civiliza- 
tion toward the prairie lands of central and north- 
ern Illinois. That the removal was but an inci- 
dent in a general movement was shown in 1826, 
when the first steamboat on the Illinois River 
made its appearance, thus heralding the exten- 
sion of commerce into the country which had 
been for so many years stubbornly held by the 
Indians against the increasing encroachment of 
the whites. 

Hard following upon the admission of Illinois 
into the Union, the old French settlements in 
southern Illinois along the Mississippi fell into 

74 



SENATOR JOHN McLEAN 



a state of decay; but in 1825 the glories of their 
past were recalled when Lafayette visited Illi- 
nois on the occasion when he was a guest of the 
nation which he had helped to establish. A visit 
was made to Kaskaskia where he was entertained 
with all the pomp and splendor which could be 
shown in those pioneer days. A couple of weeks 
later, on his return trip, he paid a visit to Shaw- 
neetown, where John McLean was among those 
prominent citizens who extended a cordial and 
affectionate welcome to the grateful nation's be- 
loved guest. 

Another of the many public questions which 
John McLean helped to settle was the establish- 
ment of the Illinois and Michigan canal to con- 
nect Lake Michigan with the Illinois River, Con- 
gress passing an act in 1827, through which Dan- 
iel P. Cook, then in Congress, procured a grant 
of approximately a quarter of a million acres of 
the public lands in Illinois to aid the state in 
constructing the canal. The advisability and feas- 
ibility of the improvement had been so impressed 
upon the minds of our public men, from Father 
Marquette down to and including the contempo- 
raries of John McLean, who was then Speaker of 
the Illinois House of Representatives, that his 
chief political opponent, Daniel P. Cook, was led 
to make the enthusiastic prophecy "that in less 
than thirty years it would relieve the people from 
the payment of taxes, and even leave a surplus 

75 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

to be applied to other works of public utility." 
The canal was afterward constructed from Lake 
Michigan to La Salle, a distance of about one hun- 
dred miles. Although in operation it never jus- 
tified Cook's prophecy, costing all told about 
seven million dollars, and bringing to the state 
treasury a total revenue of about ten million dol- 
lars, it was, nevertheless, a great improvement, 
stimulating as it did the settlement of northern 
Illinois and being primarily responsible, as we 
shall see, for the construction of the Illinois Cen- 
tral Railroad and for the establishment at the 
canal's junction with Lake Michigan of our own 
Chicago, now the second city of the continent and 
destined as I verily believe, to be the foremost 
city of the world. 

History has accorded his proper place to John 
McLean. 



76 



CHAPTER X 
THE EVENTFUL YEAR 1830 

Eighteen hundred and thirty, the year in which 
Senator John McLean passed to his reward, was, 
in my opinion, the most eventful year in the early 
history of the state of Illinois, for it was in that 
year that Abraham Lincoln moved from Indiana 
into Illinois and settled on a farm near the pres- 
ent city of Decatur, and the same year witnessed 
the conception if not the birth of the city of Chi- 
cago. When Lincoln came to Illinois in 1830 he 
had just reached "man's estate," .his....t3venty-first 
birthday ; and it might be of interest to note just 
what he found here at that time in the Illinois 
country. A picture of the times, as drawn in the 
splendid History of Illinois, by Davidson & Stuve, 
is as follows: 

"The population of the State in 1830 was 157,447, 
having nearly trebled itself during the preceding 
decade. There were at this time 56 counties organ- 
ized, but those in the northern portion of the State 
were mere skeletons and unwieldly in size. A third 
of the State, or more, lying between Galena and Chi- 
cago, extending southward to the Kaskaskia, the 
headwaters of the Vermilion, along the Rock River 
and far down into the military tract, constituting at 
77 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

present the most densely settled and best improved 
portions, was a trackless prairie waste, overrun by 
the Sax and Fox, Winnebago, and Potawattomie 
Indians. Much of the interior of the south part, and 
the country bordering the Embarrass, the Sangamon 
and their tributaries, had ceased to be a wilderness. 
Into the country of the Sangamon immigration had 
for some time thronged. Along the Illinois to Chi- 
cago, then just beginning to attract attention, there 
were scattered a few settlements long distances apart. 
For some years after, the settlers, either in clusters 
or separately, continued to hug the outskirts of the 
timber bordering the rivers and creeks, or the edge 
of groves, scarcely any venturing out on the open 
prairies. Along the Mississippi, settlements were 
scattered at distant intervals, culminating at the lead 
mines on Fever River, where had gathered a hetero- 
geneous population from many parts of the world, 
numbering about 1,000 souls, nine-tenths being men 
engaged in mining." 

Galena, so named on account of the rich lead 
deposits in the neighborhood, was established 
about 1820, and by the year 1830 there were ap- 
proximately 2,000 miners employed in the vicin- 
ity, and a regular mail service maintained be- 
tween Galena and Vandalia, the state capital. 
We are indebted to the lead miners of Galena 
for one account of the origin of the nickname 
"Sucker," which has long been applied to the 
Illinoisans. This account has it that a man from 
Missouri, on seeing a number of men from south- 
ern Illinois getting on a boat at the lead mines 
late in the fall, asked them whither they were 

78 



THE EVENTFUL YEAR 1830 



bound and he was informed they were on their 
way to their homes in southern Illinois to spend 
the winter. "Well," he is said to have replied, 
"you fellows remind me of suckers; upstream in 
the spring to spawn and downstream in the fall 
for the winter." 

We have seen that when the Illinois and Michi- 
gan Canal was planned it was expected that it 
would become the water highway for a tremen- 
dous volume of commerce, the tolls from which 
would pay not only the expenses of the state gov- 
ernment, but would create a surplus in the state 
treasury out of which all the needed internal im- 
provements of the state could be made. So when 
it came to surveying the route of the waterway 
it was only natural that attention should be di- 
rected to its termini on Lake Michigan and the 
Illinois River as favorable spots for the develop- 
ment of cities; and we find that the original sur- 
vey of the site of Chicago was made by James 
Thompson, of Kaskaskia, in 1830, when he also 
was engaged in making a survey of the route of 
the Illinois and Michigan Canal. At the time 
Thompson made his survey of Chicago there were 
but seven white families living in this vicinity 
outside of Fort Dearborn, which had been rebuilt 
some five years after the Dearborn massacre and 
destruction of the old fort. The canal had been 
advertised to such an extent and the public mind 
had been led to expect so much from it that the 

79 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

first real estate boom in Chicago was launched 
with vigor and resulted in the sale of many town 
lots. One of the local histories of Chicago makes 
the following statement concerning the influence 
which the building of the canal had upon the 
origin and growth of the city: 

"It is a curious fact that the early growth of Chi- 
cago was greatly in accord with the progress of the 
canal. The canal may be said to have made Chicago. 
When the survey of the site was commenced and 
platted, by order of the canal commissioners, in 1829, 
there resided upon its site only about a half dozen fam- 
ilies, outside the palisades of Fort Dearborn: but with 
the prospect of the inauguration of this great work, 
population began to pour in freely. The Black Hawk 
war perhaps checked it a little, but with the removal 
of the Indians, the tide of immigration was resumed. 
When in 1835, the first canal loan of $500,000 was 
authorized, a new impulse was given to the settle- 
ment of the town, and with the additional legislation 
of January, 1836, her population swollen to about 
4,000, the extraordinary fever for speculating in town 
lots still rife, and the actual commencement of the 
work, we find the prosperity of the period to culmi- 
nate. Shortly after came the great revulsion of 
1837, which, with the collapse of the visionary internal 
improvement system of the State, two and a half 
years later, would have utterly prostrated Chicago 
but for the persistency with which the work on the 
canal was sustained. As it was, our prosperity was 
checked materially for seven years." 

Cook County was organized in 1831, and the 
"Town of Chicago" was incorporated in 1833; but 

80 



THE EVENTFUL YEAR 1830 



it was not until 1837 that the prospect of estab- 
lishing a great city here was alluring enough to 
lead the principal inhabitants to incorporate Chi- 
cago as a city, which was done on March 4, 1837. 
Showing at once how new the city is and what a 
wonderful growth it has had in its brief exist- 
ence, it is perhaps sufficient to note in passing 
that Stephen F. Gale, grandfather of the present 
Mayor of Chicago, William Hale Thompson, 
helped to draft the first city charter, was the first 
fire chief of the volunteer fire department of the 
new city, and was one among the twenty-eight 
who voted at the first election of trustees held in 
the "Town of Chicago" on August 10, 1833. Al- 
though he was undoubtedly influenced by the 
proposed construction of the Illinois and Michi- 
gan Canal, Gale deliberately selected Chicago as 
his future home at about the time that James 
Thompson surveyed and platted the original site, 
and moved here in 1830 from his ancestral home 
among the granite hills of New Hampshire. 

I have heard his grandson, Mayor Thompson, 
say that his grandfather Gale selected this spot 
after a careful study of the topography of this 
region from which he observed that on account 
of the location of the Great Lakes all of the travel 
between the settled country in the east and the 
new country in the great and growing west would 
pass through Illinois at or near the southern end 
of Lake Michigan. That his judgment was good 

81 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

may be seen today in the fact that all the trans- 
continental lines of railway of the United States 
pass through Illinois, between Chicago and St. 
Louis. Mayor Thompson's mother was born in 
the Gale home at the corner of Dearborn and 
Washington streets, and was, at the time it was 
built, quite a distance from the business section 
of the town, then located along the south bank 
of the Chicago River. The outer limits of the 
city, as platted by James Thompson, were Kinzie 
street on the north, Madison on the south, State 
street on the east, and Desplaines on the west. 
These streets enclosed an area of less than half 
a square mile, which is now only a portion of the 
central business district of Chicago, the area of 
the city having extended until it now covers 200 
square miles. 

James Thompson returned to Kaskaskia after 
he had finished the survey of Chicago, and the 
public records of old Randolph County show 
that he occasionally held public office and lived 
a useful life until 1872, the year of his death. For 
forty-five years thereafter his remains lay in an 
unmarked grave in old Preston cemetery in Ran- 
dolph County, and until Mayor Thompson of 
Chicago, after undertaking without success to 
awaken the civic pride of the Chicago City Coun- 
cil to their duty in the matter, himself erected 
and dedicated a fitting monument to the memory 
of James Thompson on Memorial Day, 1917. It 

82 



THE EVENTFUL YEAR 1830 



was a matter of great regret on my part that I 
was unable to accept an invitation to be present 
at the dedicatory exercises in old Preston ceme- 
tery, which were attended by many of the promi- 
nent men of today, including Dr. Otto L. Schmidt, 
president of the Illinois Historical Society, who 
concluded his speech on that occasion with these 
words : 

"In reopening these forgotten pages of Illinois his- 
tory, Mayor Thompson has done a duty for the city 
of which he is the chief official, a service to the State, 
and reveals a sacred interest in the past that we hope 
will arouse the latent talents of others to emulate 
this public spirited and ideal act." 

-* 
Besides the delay in the construction of the 

canal, the early growth of Chicago was retarded 
by troubles in northern Illinois with the Indians, 
who had not exactly had a "square deal" from the 
white man. As civilization advanced westward 
the red men were driven from one stand to an- 
other, until they had a right to question the sin- 
cerity and good faith of the treaties we had made 
with them and had as often broken. 

Finally, in 1804, William Henry Harrison, then 
governor of the Indiana Territory, including Illi- 
nois, and later President of the United States and 
grandfather of another President, made a solemn 
treaty with the Indians within his jurisdiction 
under which they ceded to the United States the 
land they had been nominally holding between 

83 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

the Illinois and Mississippi rivers, in considera- 
tion for which the Indians were to receive one 
thousand dollars per year "in trade." This land 
was the habitation and hunting grounds of the 
Sacs, Fox and Winnebago Indians, and in memory 
of their occupation we find many of their pic- 
turesque names in the geography of the region. 
Among the Indians who would not be reconciled 
to the Harrison treaty was Black Hawk, a war 
leader or general of the Sacs and Fox, which 
tribes had merged and occupied the beautiful val- 
ley of the Fox River in what is now perhaps the 
most productive and most valuable dairy section 
in the world that surrounding Elgin, the home 
of butter and watches. 

By 1830 Black Hawk and his following had 
sullenly given way before the steady advance of 
the whites until he and his braves were quartered 
in a village on the Rock River, near the present 
site of Rock Island, where, from an adjacent 
height of land, known since as Black Hawk's 
Watch Tower, he could see for many miles in 
every direction. In^JSSO^ Chief Keokuk concluded 
another treaty with the United States in which 
it was agreed that he would move all his tribes 
west of the Mississippi. Black Hawk would not 
agree to this further surrender and nursed his 
smoldering wrath until 1832^ when, with several 
hundred followers, he recrossed the Mississippi 
into Illinois, under the pretext that he and his 

84 



THE EVENTFUL YEAR 1830 



people were merely paying a friendly visit to the 
Winnebagoes in southern Wisconsin. Immedi- 
ately the alarm was given that the Indians again 
were on the rampage, and companies of militia 
were hastily raised and mobilized for the purpose 
of expelling the intruder and his band of warriors. 
This resulted in a prolonged chase and a number 
of skirmishes and pitched battles, which, alto- 
gether, are known as Black Hawk's War, and in 
the course of which the war chief's devoted fol- 
lowing were all but exterminated, the "war" end- 
ing with the battle of Bad Ax on the Mississippi 
River in Wisconsin, where the Indian had en- 
deavored to get the remnants of his tribe back 
across the river. 

My father enlisted and served in this war, and 
thus was brought into association with many men 
who were then or afterward prominent in the 
state or nation. Among these were General Scott, 
commanding the United States army; Thomas 
Ford and Joseph Duncan, later governors of Illi- 
nois; Sidney Breese, later chief justice of the 
State Supreme Court; Jefferson Davis, later 
leader of the Rebellion; General "Zach" Taylor, 
and Abraham Lincoln, later Presidents of the 
United States. 

The historians, as a rule, have dealt justly with 
Black Hawk, allowing that there were two sides 
to his controversy; they all agree, in accordance 
with the fact, that he was a brave warrior. Some 

85 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

go so far as to say that he was wholly justified, 
according to his primitive idea of fairness and 
justice, in striking back at his relentless pursuers, 
and that he was far more sinned against than sin- 
ning. Some color is given this contention in the 
fact that following his capture he was allowed 
to return to Iowa to live out his days in freedom 
and in peace. On quitting the beautiful country 
which had been the home of his people for so 
many years he made this simple and beautiful 
speech to those who had conquered and driven 
him out: "Rock River was a beautiful country. 
I like my towns, my cornfields, and the home of 
my people. I fought for it; it is now yours; it 
will produce you good crops." 
And it has! 



86 



CHAPTER XI 
THE AUTHOR MAKES HIS APPEARANCE 

jVly father left the home of his parents when he 
was twenty years of age to make a home for him- 
self. At that age, which would doubtless be con- 
sidered young in these days, he took unto himself 
a wife, Lydia Smith, who was then eighteen years 
of age, and together they settled on a farm near 
that of his father and began life. I have often 
heard father tell of their start in life with only a 
rifle, a dog, an axe and a few very few house- 
hold goods. With the rifle he was able to keep 
the larder well filled with wild game which 
abounded in that new country. The dog treed 
coons and tracked the fox and other fur-bearing 
animals whose pelts contributed to the wearing 
apparel of the family and served as a medium of 
exchange with which they purchased powder, 
lead, flints (for in those days the rifles were all 
of the flint-lock pattern), and such simple, staple 
groceries as could be afforded. The axe was the 
insignia of advancing civilization, for with it the 
lands were cleared of timber, which was worked 
up into rails for fences, logs to build house and 
barn, rough hewn shingles to cover them, and 

87 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

wood for the wide fireplace which served for heat- 
ing, cooking and incidentally ventilation, al- 
though there was no dearth of that in those pio- 
neer cabins. 

When my father's family settled in Franklin 
County in 1818, the nearest neighbor was eight 
miles away. There were no schools nor churches, 
nor even any mills where grain might be ground 
into flour. There were two methods of pulveriz- 
ing or treating grain so it could be made into the 
rather coarse but very wholesome bread of that 
time. 

One method was to punch a square piece of tin 
or sheet iron full of holes so that the rough or 
jagged edges would stand up on one side like 
the grater of the modern housewife. This was 
then beat into an oval form and the edges 
tacked to a board, leaving the jagged side up. 
The ears of corn, which were not allowed to ma- 
ture and dry, were rubbed vigorously over the 
rough grater thus contrived and cut into small 
particles which were caught on a sheet or in a 
bucket and placed in the sunlight to dry. 

Another method in common use was known as 
the stump mill, which was made by leveling the 
top of a stump of a green tree, preferably hickory 
on account of its toughness and wearing quality, 
and excavating a bowl-shape depression in the top 
of the stump as far as it could be deepened with 
the axe. A fire was then kindled in the depression 

88 



THE AUTHOR MAKES HIS APPEARANCE 

and kept burning for some time for the double 
purpose of deepening the depression and burning 
off the rough places and splinters left by the axe, 
after which the charred wood and ashes were 
scraped out, leaving a rude but comparatively 
smooth mortar. Then a rude but effective device 
for pulverizing the grain was arranged, which, 
with the addition of considerable "elbow grease," 
operated on a plan similar to our modern pile 
driver. This contrivance was made by taking a 
long, lithe, tough, green sapling, called the spring 
pole, the large end of which was fastened securely 
to the ground at such a distance from the stump 
so that the small end of the spring pole would 
reach just over the stump ; then a stout forked sap- 
ling was set up in a post hole between the fastened 
end of the spring pole and the stump, in the form 
of the letter Y, in the fork or crotch of which the 
spring pole rested with the small, free end di- 
rectly over the stump mortar. To this free end a 
rude, heavy pestle was attached. The pestle was 
made by taking a piece off the butt end of a small 
tree, rounding off and smoothing one end for use 
in the mortar, and boring a hole through the piece 
near the other end through which a wooden pin 
about two feet long was driven, leaving an end of 
the pin sticking out on each side which could be 
grasped in the hands. Now the primitive mill 
was ready for operation. A quantity of grain was 
placed in the mortar. The "miller," necessarily 

89 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

a person of considerable strength (from which 
doubtless originated the expression, "don't send 
a boy to mill"), grasped the handles of the pestle 
and with all his strength plunged the pounding 
end onto the grain in the mortar. As soon as the 
downward pulling force ceased, the tendency of 
the spring pole to straighten itself was instantly 
asserted with the result that the pestle was vir- 
tually yanked into its normal position suspended 
above the mortar. A repetition of this homely 
process resulted in crushing the grain to a satis- 
factory degree of fineness and in adding strength 
to the muscles of the operator. What a boon that 
mill would be today to thousands of men of low 
physical standards who would, through its use, 
acquire health and strength and produce for them- 
selves a flour with the necessary amount of rough- 
age in it to aid in restoring normal processes in 
their digestive machinery. No wonder the human 
family is getting weaker while it is growing wiser ! 
Shortly after my people moved into southern 
Illinois, it acquired the appellation "Egypt/' 
which has since been applied to that portion of 
the state lying south of the 39th parallel of north 
latitude. In the early days all the agriculture of 
the state was carried on in the southern portion, 
especially in the great American Bottom near the 
Mississippi, where the soil was loose and easily 
cultivated. The open prairies of the central and 
northern portions were not so desirable because 

90 



THE AUTHOR MAKES HIS APPEARANCE 

the virgin sod which had laid there undisturbed 
for unnumbered centuries was so tough and tena- 
cious that it could not be turned with the crude 
implements available. On account of this the 
more northern settlers depended to a great extent 
upon the southern settlers for a supply of grain 
for food, and trips to southern Illinois for corn 
were of common occurrence. Recalling the days 
of Joseph and his brethren when the children of 
Israel "and all countries came into Egypt to Jo- 
seph for to buy corn ; because that the famine was 
so sore in all lands," the similar custom in early 
Illinois came to be referred to as "going down to 
Egypt for corn." Later it was attempted in some 
quarters to make it appear that the appellation 
"Egypt" was given southern Illinois because old 
Egypt was famed as a place of darkness, and that 
the intellectual darkness or ignorance of the 
southern Illinois people was similar to it. Those 
who urge this explanation of the origin of the 
term are in the position of the pot when it called 
the kettle black, because they overlook the fact 
that as ancient Egypt was the birthplace of civ- 
ilization, so our "Egypt" was the birthplace of 
civilization in the Illinois country, and it was un- 
doubtedly this fact which impressed upon our pio- 
neer ancestors the similarity; hence the name. 

The year ^7^was memorable in the early his- 
tory of Illinois, and replete with events of the 
most momentous character. In that year the cap- 

91 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

ital of the state was permanently located at 
Springfield ; it was the year in which Chicago was 
organized as a city; the first railroad of the state 
went into operation in St. Clair County as a coal 
road, with horses for motive power, the first lo- 
comotive not appearing until the following year ; 
the worst financial panic in the history of the 
state occurred in that year, the people reaping the 
whirlwind from the wind which had been sown in 
the organization of the state banks, against which 
John McLean had solemnly warned them; the 
great scheme for vast internal improvements at a 
total cost of ten million dollars, including a pro- 
posed "Central" railroad, was adopted by the state 
legislature ; the year is memorable to the cause of 
freedom because of the fact that Elijah P. Love- 
joy was assassinated at Alton, which marked the 
first assault in this state upon the constitutional 
rights of free speech and a free press; to James 
Aiken McLean and Lydia, his wife, an event of 
passing interest occurred in that on the 7th day 
of October in that year there was added to their 
growing family a son whom they named John, a 
name common among my ancestors, and one which 
had recently had additional lustre shed upon it 
by the member of our family who first represented 
Illinois in the Congress of the United States. That 
son was none other than myself. 

By the time I was born my parents, through 
their patient industry and frugality, were among 

92 



THE AUTHOR MAKES HIS APPEARANCE 

the moderately well-to-do of their neighborhood. 
Father had a goodly sized farm, and it was well 
stocked with all kinds of domesticated animals 
and fowl, and had a splendid orchard of apples, 
peaches and pears, all in bearing. There was noth- 
ing unusual in my childhood days ; I simply grew 
up as did others in a similar environment. The 
schools of that day were what were known as 
"subscription" schools, where those who had chil- 
dren to educate would subscribe a certain sum, in 
keeping with their circumstances and the antic- 
ipated benefits, to pay the running expenses of 
the school, it being expected that the subscription 
would be for a certain sum per scholar. Teachers 
were not required to pay for board and lodging 
but "boarded around" among the families of the 
children taught. The books in use when I first 
attended school were Webster's Blue Back Speller 
and Pike's Arithmetic. If parents were too poor 
to buy the text books, the children were sent to 
school with a New Testament, a copy of which 
was in every home. There were no maps, charts 
or blackboards which are so common in our 
schools now. 

We had no "store clothes" in those days, such 
as we wore being strictly and entirely home made, 
even to the materials which went into them. Ev- 
ery farmer sowed a few acres of flax and planted 
a few acres of cotton. The flax was sowed broad- 
cast and needed little or no cultivation, the plants 

93 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

being pulled up by the roots when matured and 
laid in windrows for drying, after which it was 
taken to the barn where the seed were beaten out 
on the barn floor with oar-shaped paddles called 
flails. After the seed were threshed out, the 
plant was exposed to the weather so as to rot the 
stalks or woody portions, then dried again and 
broken into small bits which were passed over a 
comb made of a number of small, sharp pins driven 
into a board for the purpose of combing out the 
bits of woody fibre. It was then passed over a 
hackle which separated the tow from the long 
fibre of the flax, placed on a distaff, from which it 
was spun into thread, and this in turn was woven 
into linen cloth. Cotton was made in a similar 
way, the bolls when ripe being gathered from the 
plants, the seed separated from the fibre, and the 
latter carded into rolls, from which it was spun 
into thread and woven into cloth. Wool from the 
backs of our sheep was treated in much the same 
way as cotton. There was little or no occasion 
for dyeing the linens produced from flax, and 
they were used in their natural color or bleached ; 
cottons, used largely for women's dresses, were 
dyed with copperas for greens, indigo for blues, 
and turkey red for reds ; woolen cloth, when dyed, 
was usually colored with an extract made from 
walnut and hickory bark. Shoes were a luxury, 
it being expected that one pair per year would be 
a plenty. The boys usually had their annual pair 

94 



THE AUTHOR MAKES HIS APPEARANCE 

worn out by the time of the warm weather in the 
spring, and went barefoot until time for the reg- 
ular fall shoeing, but the girls managed it so they 
usually had shoes for Sundays in summer. 



95 



CHAPTER XII 
A BOYHOOD BEFORE THE WAR 

"How dear to my heart are the scenes of my childhood, 
When fond recollection presents them to view; 

The orchard, the meadow, the deep tangled wildwood, 
And every loved spot which my infancy knew." 

The boy of today with all there is to instruct, 
entertain and amuse him, would not be able to dis- 
cover in my boyhood much that would interest 
him ; but I believe that what the boy of today has 
gained in some ways he has lost in other ways, 
for I am sure that my boyhood, uneventful and 
prosaic as it may have been, was just as much or 
more conducive to moral and physical health than 
the life of the average boy now. We lived close 
to nature, for one reason because we had to ; there 
was not much artificiality in those days. 

The seasons in their turn brought a variety of 
life and action which made our simple life any- 
thing but monotonous. In the spring the birds 
came from the south and built their nests in the 
trees, bushes and grass and regaled us with their 
songs throughout the day. The summer with its 
heat and its rains would cause the crops to grow 
and mature. Then came the autumn when all 
the countryside was a beautiful panorama of vivid 

96 



A BOYHOOD BEFORE THE WAR 

and gorgeous colors. "When the frost was on 
the pumpkin and the fodder in the shock," when 
the harvest was at hand and we placed in the cel- 
lar our winter stock of potatoes, apples, smoked 
meat_andLaU ^ Jynds of nuts gathered from the 
woods. Then came the winter with the family 
gatKered around the fireplace in which the bright 
fire danced and crackled and over which our meals 
were prepared. Those were the happy days. If 
the reader would like a more detailed picture of 
our home life at that time, he will find it drawn 
by a master in the beautiful poem, "Snowbound," 
by the Quaker poet, John Greenleaf Whittier. 

The amusements of that time were in keeping 
with the simple life of the people. Thanksgiving 
and Christmas were religiously observed and were 
usually days of reunion when families would 
gather together around a festal board which fairly 
groaned with good things to eat. Then there 
were recognized holidays including the Fourth of 
July and the days when the Circuit Court con- 
vened, which was twice each year, spring and au- 
tumn. Every man went who could, whether he 
had business or not. These occasions were turned 
to a good purpose by the pioneers because it was 
here more than any other way that they got into 
touch with the world outside of their simple 
lives. The judge and the lawyers who attended 
the sessions of the court usually were intellectual 
men, well informed on past and contemporaneous 

97 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

history. During the noon recess of the court 
either the judge of some lawyer in attendance on 
the court would make a public address on the cur- 
rent political state of the country. In that way 
information was circulated, there being very few 
newspapers published at that time and very poor 
facilities for circulating them. 

The great event of the year, of course, was the 
Fourth of July celebration which was always 
looked forward to with great expectancy. Bright 
and early on the morning of the Fourth, every 
member of the family was up and dressed in his 
or her best. As the country was only sparsely 
settled, celebrations were necessarily a long dis- 
tance apart and it was often necessary to travel 
many miles to attend a celebration, the method 
of traveling according to circumstances being in 
ox carts and wagons, on horseback or on foot. 
Arrived at the place, a marshal for the day would 
be chosen, who was usually a man with imposing 
appearance with a voice to match. Under his di- 
rection a parade would be formed at the head of 
which an American flag would be carried, if a flag 
was available, and if not a handkerchief would be 
procured that contained the colors of the flag as 
near as could be. This would be fastened to the 
end of a hickory pole and carried at the head of 
the procession. If a fife and drum could be se- 
cured the occasion was indeed a gala day. The 
exercises, conducted under the direction of a 

98 



A BOYHOOD BEFORE THE WAR 

chairman chosen for that purpose, would include 
a prayer by a minister, a reading of the Declara- 
tion of Independence and the fervid speech by 
some person of note who had been selected as the 
orator of the day. These orations would always 
include a summary of the events which led up to 
the Revolutionary War, an account of the hard- 
ships endured by our soldiers during that time, 
and an appeal to the audience to guard well the 
liberty which had cost so much to obtain. Every 
man, woman and child old enough to understand 
was inspired on these occasions to do everything 
possible to perpetuate this glorious republic; and 
thus the spirit of patriotism was instilled in the 
minds of the young which influenced them to be 
loyal and patriotic Americans. The way in which 
our natal day is now celebrated is in sad contrast 
with the celebrations when I was a boy : now the 
day is given over to sports and amusements and, 
in fact, to almost every use except that of teach- 
ing the rising generation the origin and the mean- 
ing of the day in American history. 

The pioneers were honest. With them the 
word was as good as the bond. This was im- 
pressed upon me by an incident which occurred 
before I was quite ten years of age. My father 
bought some cattle from his neighbors in the 
spring of 1847 and drove them to Wisconsin to 
market. One Sunday soon after his return with 
the money which he received from the cattle, he 

99 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

and mother and the older children went to church 
some seven or eight miles distant and left me and 
a sister younger than I to look after the house. 
After they had gone a neighbor, W. S. Crawford, 
came to the house to see my father. I informed 
him that the folks had gone to church and likely 
would not be back until late in the afternoon. 
Crawford then explained to me that the purpose 
of his visit was to get $300.00 in cash for cattle 
that my father had bought from him to market in 
Wisconsin, and that he was disappointed in not 
finding him home because he had promised a 
neighbor of his to let him have a sum of money 
on Monday morning. I knew where father kept 
the money and I also knew of his indebtedness to 
Mr. Crawford, so I took him into the house, pulled 
out an old calfskin covered trunk with no lock on 
it, in which my father kept his money. Crawford 
and I counted out the amount of his account in 
silver and gold coins, the silver being in French 
and Spanish and the gold in American coin. Pru- 
dent men in those days did not handle a 
money, known as wildcat money, because its value 
depended entirely upon the solvency of the bank 
that issued the bill, which might be good but 
which was more likely not. Mr. Crawford took 
the money that we counted out and not being 
able to find pen or paper with which to execute a 
receipt, he went to the fireplace, took out a piece 
of hard clay and wrote on a log above the fire- 

100 



A BOYHOOD BEFORE THE WAR 

place, "Ake, I got my money," and underneath 
this signed his name, "Bill Crawford." My fa- 
ther's name was James Aiken McLean, but for 
short his friends called him Ake. When he came 
home later I told him that Mr. Crawford had been 
there, and he wanted to know if Bill got his 
money, in reply to which I called his attention to 
the receipt written on the log. He smiled when he 
read it but never asked how much I had paid 
Crawford, because he had implicit faith in Craw- 
ford's honesty just as Crawford had in his hon- 
esty. 

During my boyhood great strides were made in 
the settlement, of the state and in improvements. 
The farmers had better houses, better stock, bet- 
ter farming implements, better barns, and their 
children were better fed, better clothed and better 
educated. We had store clothes, boots and shoes, 
and rode on leather saddles. Mail routes were be- 
ing extended so that all portions of the state were 
brought in touch with the outside world ; in fact, 
by the time I was ten years old the state had out- 
grown its first constitution, and another was 
adopted in 1848, in which year the Illinois and 
Michigan Canal was finally completed. 

Perhaps the most wonderful thing in the devel- 
opment of our prairie empire, and the thing 
which, more than any other, has aided that devel- 
opment, has been the improvement and extension 
of the means of transportation. As stated here- 

101 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

tof ore, it so happened that the steamboat appeared 
at about the time of my father's birth, and the 
locomotive appeared at about the time of my 
birth; consequently it has been a portion of my 
good fortune to observe the growth of the rail- 
roads in Illinois from the very beginning, when, 
in the year of my birth, the first railroad, operated 
with horses as motive power, was built from the 
bank of the Mississippi opposite St. Louis, and 
within the present city of East St. Louis, a dis- 
tance of six miles to the bluffs which now mark 
the eastern limit of East St. Louis. This road 
was built for the transportation of coal to St. 
Louis. In 1838, eight miles of track were laid 
from Meredosia in an easterly direction as a part 
of the Northern Cross Railroad, which, under the 
great internal improvement plan of 1837, was to 
be constructed from Quincy on the Mississippi 
River, through Meredosia, Jacksonville, and 
Springfield to the Indiana State line. It was on 
this eight miles of track that the first steam loco- 
motive in the Mississippi valley was operated. 

On a visit which I made to Springfield many 
years ago, the Secretary of State, who was a per- 
sonal friend of mine, showed me the record of 
the shipment of that locomotive which disclosed 
that the engine was lost in transit somewhere be- 
tween its place of manufacture in the east and its 
Illinois destination. 

On account of the fact that the internal im- 
102 



A BOYHOOD BEFORE THE WAR 

provement plans nearly plunged the state into 
hopeless bankruptcy, an effective check was placed 
on further railroad building by the state, so that 
the Northern Cross was built only to Jacksonville, 
a distance of about twenty-five miles, which cost 
the state approximately one million dollars, and 
out of which it realized later one-tenth of that 
sum. The next project in point of time was the 
construction of the Chicago and Galena road to 
connect the new metropolis on Lake Michigan 
and the lead mining district around Galena. A 
part of this road was finished from Chicago to 
Elgin in 1850, which is now a portion of the main 
line of the present Chicago & Northwestern. 

One of the outstanding features of the internal 
improvement dream of 1837 was the construction 
of a "central" railroad from the southern terminus 
of the Illinois & Michigan Canal to the junction 
of the Mississippi and Ohio rivers. Like the 
other projects of that scheme, a little work was 
done on it and it was abandoned because the state 
had bitten off more than it could chew, and this 
worthy project suffered with the rest. In 1848, 
however, the completion of the canal renewed the 
agitation for the road with the result that in Sep- 
tember, 1850, the Congress of the United States 
passed an Act granting nearly three million acres 
of government lands in Illinois to aid in building 
the road, and, at the same time, made similar 
grants to the states south of Illinois so that the 

103 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

road might be continued to the Gulf of Mexico. 
The Act granted a right of way two hundred feet 
in width for the railway through the public lands, 
and granted to the state to aid in its construction 
the alternate sections of land of even numbers 
six sections back from the railway in both direc- 
tions. 

Under the grant, it was up to the Illinois legis- 
lature to establish the route of the main line from 
Ottawa to Cairo, and also of the branches which 
had been provided for to Chicago and Galena. 
Very bitter contentions were engendered in this 
way between opposing interests which wanted 
the railroad in one location or another; and I 
remember that it was expected in our neighbor- 
hood that it would be put through on a direct line 
from Cairo to Ottawa through Benton to Mt. 
Vernon, where the Galena branch would be de- 
flected through Greenville, Springfield and Peoria 
to Galena ; but the controlling influence in the loca- 
tion of the road, as finally agreed upon, was the 
question of which proposed route offered the 
most and the best available land in the twelve- 
mile strip through which the road would operate, 
and it was upon this basis that it was located as 
at present, some twenty miles west of Benton. 

When the legislature convened in January, 1851, 
there was a representative on hand from a syndi- 
cate of eastern capitalists who offered to build 
the road if they could be subrogated to the rights 

104 



A BOYHOOD BEFORE THE WAR 

of the state in the lands granted by the federal 
government. The proposal was accepted by the 
legislature in consideration of a promise on the 
part of the syndicate to pay seven per cent of 
the gross income of the road into the state treas- 
ury, under which agreement the road has paid 
about forty millions of dollars in revenue to the 
state since 1855, when theJHlinois lines were prac- 
tically compTetecL" From this beginning, the Illi- 
nois Central Railroad has developed into one of 
the biggest systems in the country, operating now 
nearly five thousand miles of railway; and it has 
served as a potent factor in the development of 
the state and its resources. 

So it has happened that during my lifetime the 
railroads of the state have been developed to their 
present wonderful standard. Be it remembered 
that, at the time of my birth, there were no rail- 
roads operating in the state ; today there are more 
than 13,000 miles of main lines in service which, 
with the duplication of mileage in the case of 
double track lines and with industrial and yard 
tracks, bring the total up to nearly 25,000 miles 
of railway tracks, or enough, if laid on the equa- 
tor, to reach around the world. That, in my opin- 
ion, is not only the most wonderful advance which 
we have made, but it has had the most potent in- 
fluence in the development of our rich resources, 
being virtually the handmaiden of mining and ag- 
riculture. 

105 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

The thing which, in the early days, pointed to 
Illinois as the central or pivotal state of the ter- 
ritory between the Appalachian and Rocky moun- 
tains was the fact that all of the great navigable 
waterways of the upper Mississippi valley border 
or impinge upon our favored territory, including 
the Great Lakes, the Mississippi, the Missouri, 
the Ohio, the Cumberland and the Tennessee. 
Add to this imposing array the fact that prac- 
tically all the great railway systems of the United 
States lead to Illinois, just as, in olden times, all 
roads led to Rome, and that the city of Chicago 
is the greatest railway center of the whole world, 
and it readily will be seen that in transportation 
facilities we easily lead in the sisterhood states. 
And it is our knowledge of this favored situation 
and our quiet confidence that it will be seen and 
appreciated by others that convinces the thought- 
ful Chicagoan that some day our city, sitting like 
a queen by our inland sea at the head of the rich- 
est valley in the world, will be the center of the 
commerce and industry of civilization. 



106 



CHAPTER XIII 
THE RISE OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN 

The life history of Abraham Lincoln is a his- 
tory of the opposition in this country to the insti- 
tution of human slavery. Heretofore attention 
has been called to the fact that the people from 
whom the great emancipator sprung were un- 
alterably opposed to the institution, from whom 
he doubtless imbibed his early hatred of the sys- 
tem. Just before coming to Illinois he made a 
trip from Indiana down the Ohio and Mississippi 
rivers to New Orleans, where he had his first view 
of a slave market. It is said that the sight caused 
him to exclaim : "If I ever get a chance I will hit 
that institution and hit it hard"! His emancipa- 
tion proclamation in later years was the promised 
blow which struck the shackles from four million 
human beings. 

Two years after his arrival in Illinois he was a 
candidate for the state legislature, taking a cour- 
ageous stand against the proposed building of a 
railroad by the state on account of its great cost, 
and advocating instead the improvement of the 
Sangamon River for water borne transportation 
as being "much better suited to our infant re- 

107 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

sources." The internal improvement fever, just 
then waxing into its greatest strength, was 
enough to defeat him. After announcing his 
candidacy for the legislature, he enlisted for serv- 
ice in the Black Hawk War and was elected cap- 
tain of his company. Returning from this service 
he reached his home in New Salem, Sangamon 
County, less than two weeks prior to the election, 
in which, although defeated, he made a very re- 
spectable showing. 

The following year he was appointed post- 
master at New Salem. Correspondence by mail 
in those days was not as common as it is now, 
for, with money as scarce as it then was, it cost 
25c to mail a letter; and consequently Lincoln 
had considerable time at his disposal which he 
devoted to the occupation of surveying and in 
general study. 

At the next election of members of the legis- 
lature in 1834 he was again a candidate, this time 
with greater success, being elected with the sec- 
ond highest vote in a field of thirteen candidates. 
Among the four members for Sangamon County 
elected at that time was John T. Stuart, who was 
a major in the Black Hawk War. Stuart was a 
lawyer, and had a law library which was ac- 
counted the best in that section of the state. Be- 
ing greatly impressed with Lincoln's native 
ability and honesty, Major Stuart offered him 
access to his library, aided and encouraged him 

108 



THE RISE OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN 

in a study of the law, and later took him into his 
office as a partner. 

In 1836 Lincoln was again elected to the legis- 
lature, and it was in that session that he met 
Stephen A. Douglas, elected to the House from 
Morgan County. Lincoln was again elected to 
the legislature in 1838 and in 1840, serving in the 
latter term with Lyman Trumbull of St. Clair 
County. He declined a renomination for a fifth 
term in the legislature. 

While representing Sangamon County in the 
legislature, which then met at Vandalia, the ques- 
tion came up of moving the capitol further north 
to keep pace with the trend of settlement. In the 
competition for the new location, he was in charge 
of the interests of Springfield, and is credited 
with doing some very clever politcal maneuvering 
which won the permanent location of the state 
capitol. 

Lincoln was serving as a member of the legis- 
lature at the time of my birth in 1837, and the year 
before that had insisted on being recorded against 
a resolution passed in the State legislature recog- 
nizing the right of property in human beings. A 
portion of his protest entered on the Journal of 
the House stated it as a part of his creed "that the 
institution of slavery is founded on both injustice 
and bad policy." 

Following his retirement from the legislature, 
Lincoln gave his full time to his growing law 

109 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

practice, getting back into politics in 1846, when 
he was elected to Congress. His rival of later 
years, Stephen A. Douglas, was also elected to the 
same Congress, but before it convened was elected 
to the Senate. The Illinois delegation in that 
Congress included Judge Breese and Judge 
Douglas in the Senate and O. B. Ficklin, John 
Wentworth, of Chicago, and Abraham Lincoln 
among the seven members in the House. Hanni- 
bal Hamlin, later Vice-President with Lincoln, 
was in the Senate from Maine; Daniel Webster 
was serving his last term in the Senate from 
Massachusetts; Jefferson Davis represented Mis- 
sissippi, Thomas H. Benton represented Missouri, 
Simon Cameron represented Pennsylvania and 
John C. Calhoun represented South Carolina in 
the Senate. Among Lincoln's colleagues in the 
House was David Wilmot, of Pennsylvania, 
author of the famous "Wilmot Proviso" that 
slavery should never exist in the territory ac- 
quired from Mexico, for which Lincoln boasted 
that he voted forty or fifty times. 

Consistent with the past and prophetic of his 
future, the first set speech Lincoln made in Con- 
gress was on the thesis that the Maxican War, 
begun early in 1847, "had been unnecessarily and 
unconstitutionally commenced by President 
James K. Polk." This speech of Lincoln's re- 
quired courage of the highest order because at 
the time he made it the capitol of Mexico had been 

110 



THE RISE OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN 

captured, and a few weeks later the treaty was 
made which added to the United States territory 
equal in area to Germany, France and Spain com- 
bined. Lincoln attacked the Mexican War as 
covering the ulterior purpose of securing addi- 
tional territory out of which slave states might 
be created, thus maintaining the historic balance 
in the United States Senate between the slave 
states and the free states. In referring to Lin- 
coln's attitude toward the Mexican War, his sec- 
retary and later biographer, John G. Nicolay, 
says: "Replying to the Democratic charge that 
they (the Whigs) were unpatriotic in denouncing 
the war, they voted in favor of every measure to 
sustain, supply and encourage the soldiers in the 
field." 

Upon completing his single term of service in 
Congress, Lincoln returned to Springfield appar- 
ently with the intention of abandoning politics 
and public life to devote himself to the profession 
of law. However, he was not to be allowed to 
exercise his own desires. He himself is authority 
for the statement that "in 1854 his profession had 
almost superseded the thought of politics in his 
mind, when the repeal of the Missouri Com- 
promise aroused him as he had never been before. 
In the autumn of that year he took the stump, 
with no broader practical aim or object than to 
secure, if possible, the re-election of Hon. Richard 
Yates to Congress" from the Springfield district. 

Ill 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

This contest gained for him a state-wide reputa- 
tion as a public speaker and brought him into 
direct conflict with Senator Stephen A. Douglas, 
who had brought about the repeal of the Missouri 
Compromise. 

It was supposed when the Federal Constitution 
was agreed upon and adopted that slavery had 
been disposed of by placing it in process of grad- 
ual elimination. It was so viewed by the prom- 
inent statesman of that day, but the invention of 
the cotton gin spoiled the calculation by making 
slave labor immensely profitable, so much so that 
the moral issue was overshadowed. 

The addition of the Louisiana Territory in 1803 
further complicated the situation by bringing in 
more fuel for the flames of discord. The first 
state admitted from this territory was Louisiana, 
which came in as a slave state in 1812. Maine 
next applied for admission. The South opposed 
the admission of another free state unless a slave 
state were admitted at the same time, and asked 
for the admission of Missouri as a slave state. 
There was a great outburst on both sides of the 
question, which was stilled by Henry Clay who, 
in 1820, came forward with his famous Missouri 
Compromise, which provided for the admission 
of Missouri as a slave state, but further provided 
that there should be no other slave states formed 
north of the parallel 36 degrees 30 minutes north 
latitude the southern boundary of Missouri. 

112 



THE RISE OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN 

This agreement was observed until the Mexican 
War brought in the additional southwestern ter- 
ritory now included in California, Utah, Nevada, 
Arizona and New Mexico. The discovery of gold 
in California in 1848 attracted thousands of set- 
tlers there, making it eligible for admission as a 
state. From a glance at a map of the United 
States it will be seen that the southern boundary 
of Missouri, extended to the Pacific coast, would 
pass through California near the middle. The ap- 
plication of California for admission as a free 
state revived the old animosity supposed to have 
been forever quieted by the Missouri Compro- 
mise ; and this renewed discussion resulted in an- 
other series of compromises proposed by Henry 
Clay, author of the Missouri Compromise, then 
seventy-three years old and serving his last term 
in the United States Senate. 

In 1854, Senator Douglas introduced a bill in 
Congress, afterward known as the Kansas-Nebras- 
ka Bill, which provided for organizing territorial 
governments in them. Although it had been sol- 
emnly agreed between the North and the South 
in the passage of the Missouri Compromise in 
1820 that no other slave state should ever be cre- 
ated north of the parallel 36 degrees 30 minutes, 
the provisions of the Kansas-Nebraska Bill left it 
for the people of these territories to decide when 
ready for statehood whether they would come 
into the Union as slave states or as free states, 

113 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

thus repealing the time-honored agreement which 
had guaranteed that there would be no slavery in 
the northern portion of the Louisiana territory. 

Lincoln's campaign in behalf of Yates for Con- 
gress gradually led him into a general campaign 
throughout the state in opposition to the repeal 
of the Missouri Compromise, and made him the 
candidate of the Whigs for the seat in the United 
States Senate then held by James Shields. The 
Whigs being in a minority in the state legislature, 
Lincoln's candidacy was not regarded seriously, 
although he had enough strength to bring about 
the election of a Democrat, Lyman Trumbull, who 
was opposed to the repeal of the Missouri Com- 
promise. 

The two years following constituted a period 
of political realignment. The Jacksonian Dem- 
ocrat party was on the verge of dissolution over 
slavery, those in the South contending that Con- 
gress had no authority to prohibit slavery any- 
where in the United States, while the northern 
wing was for recognizing the institution where it 
had acquired "vested rights" but opposed its ex- 
tension to free territory. It was in a vain at- 
tempt to reconcile these extremes that Stephen A. 
Douglas evolved his doctrine of local option or 
"squatter sovereignty," as it came to be known. 
The Whig party, which was born in the campaign 
which had resulted in the election, in 1840, of 
"Old Tippecanoe," William Henry Harrison, and 

114 



THE RISE OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN 

in 1S48, of General "Zach" Taylor, and which had 
served only as a party of opposition to the Dem- 
ocratic party, was hopelessly disrupted over the 
paramount slavery issue, the South on one side 
and the North on the other. At that time a party 
had grown up known as the Know Nothing party 
which was the first and original anti-Catholic 
party, the forerunner of the later American Pro- 
tective Association and the present Guardians of 
Liberty and similar organizations. The Know 
Nothings also went to pieces on the rock of slav- 
ery. 

Seeing the need and opportunity for a new 
party, Lincoln engaged in the organization of the 
Republican party, meeting with a few sympa- 
thetic newspaper men in Decatur in February, 
1856, to issue a call for a state convention to be 
held the following May in Bloomington. Lincoln 
was the guiding spirit of the Bloomington con- 
vention which marked the birth of the Republican 
party in Illinois. I have been told by men who 
were present at that convention that on that occa- 
sion Lincoln rose to heights of eloquence never 
before or never after reached by him in political 
discussions. No verbatim report of the speech 
was ever made for the reason, it has since been 
explained, that the stenographers who were sent 
to report the speech were so entranced by his 
wonderful effort that they neglected to take it 
down. 

115 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

The newly organized Republican party placed 
in the field that year as its candidate for president, 
General John C. Fremont, who received 114 out 
of a total electoral vote of 296, showing unmistak- 
ably the public sentiment behind the new political 
organization. In the national convention in 
which Fremont was nominated, Lincoln received 
110 votes for the nomination for vice-president, 
giving evidence of the fact that he was fast be- 
coming a national character. Not being of age, I 
was unable to vote in that election, but my father 
cast a vote for the first Republican candidate for 
president. 

James Buchanan, of Pennsylvania, "a northern 
man with southern principles," was elected pres- 
ident. Although the Democratic platform on 
which he stood with smug hypocrisy described 
this as "the land of liberty and the asylum of the 
oppressed of every nation," and glibly declared 
for the squatter sovereignty advocated by Sen- 
ator Douglas as "the only sound and safe solution 
of the slavery question," Douglas evidently was 
not considered by the Democrats as "safe" as 
Buchanan. Shortly after Buchanan's inaugura- 
tion in 1857, the Supreme Court of the United 
States handed down a sweeping decision on the 
slavery question which held that neither Congress 
nor a territorial legislature had authority to pro- 
hibit slavery in Federal territory, and declaring 
that the Negro "had no rights which the white 

116 



THE RISE OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN 

man was bound to respect." It may be of interest 
in passing to state that the dissenting opinion in 
that case was written by Associate Justice John 
McLean, who had been on the Supreme Bench 
then about thirty years. He was a descendent, as 
I was, of the McLeans who settled along the 
Schuylkill River. 

The senatorial term of Stephen A. Douglas ex- 
piring March 4, 1859, the Republican State Con- 
vention of Illinois, on June 16, 1858, passed a 
unanimous resolution that "Abraham Lincoln is 
the first and only choice of the Republicans of 
Illinois for the United States Senate as the suc- 
cessor of Stephen A. Douglas." In accepting this 
nomination, Lincoln made his famous speech de- 
claring that "A house divided against itself can- 
not stand; this government cannot endure per- 
manently half slave and half free." Following 
his nomination, he challenged Douglas to a series 
of debates, and these were arranged to be held at 
seven different places in the months of August, 
September and October of that year. The first 
debate was held at Ottawa, the second at Free- 
port, and the third was held early in September 
at Jonesboro in southern Illinois. 

Having heard a great deal about Lincoln, and 
my people being partisans of his, I determined to 
see and hear him. Accordingly, on the day of the 
Jonesboro debate, I drove the twenty-five miles 
from our home to Du Quoin, the nearest town on 

117 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

the Illinois Central, and there took a train to 
Jonesboro. The place where the debate was held 
was in a grove in the edge of the town, and there 
was a large crowd of people out to hear the ora- 
torical gladiators, as both men by that time had 
national reputations as public speakers. The 
crowd in attendance was distinctly a Douglas 
crowd, so partisan in character that Judge Doug- 
las gallantly and patronizingly bespoke their most 
courteous behavior toward his opponent who, he 
assured us, was a gentleman in every respect. It 
must be remembered in this connection that 
southern Illinois was settled almost entirely from 
the South, and that a majority of these people 
sympathized with the peculiar southern institu- 
tion of slavery, while northern Illinois was set- 
tled largely from New England and reflected the 
political views of that country. The central por- 
tion of the state surrounding Springfield was re- 
garded as neutral territory in which the Know 
Nothing party had its strongest following. 

As much as I admired Lincoln and the things 
for which he stood, his personal appearance and 
address were very disappointing. He was a very 
tall man, standing about six feet six inches in his 
boots. While Douglas was speaking, Lincoln sat 
in a chair that was rather low, and as his feet were 
drawn in well toward the chair his knees were 
elevated to such a height and at such a sharp an- 
gle that it gave him a ludicrous appearance; and 

118 



THE RISE OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN 

as he sat there he had a sad, faraway look in his 
eyes that gave me the impression that he was 
grieving about something and paying no atten- 
tion whatever to the argument and eloquence of 
Judge Douglas. When the judge finished and 
Lincoln was introduced he began to rise out of 
that chair, it seemed to me, one section at a time, 
until finally he stood head and shoulders above 
those around him. If I had been disappointed at 
his appearance, I certainly was at his delivery, 
for he began his address in a high-pitched, treble 
voice, all out of proportion to his massive head 
and frame, and accompanied it with rather an 
awkward carriage and gesture ; but as he warmed 
into his subject, I became unconscious of his ap- 
pearance and his voice in the realization that I 
was listening to a wonderful message from a great 
soul, as, with unerring accuracy, he recalled every 
point Douglas had made and demolished it with 
his masterful logic. The Douglas supporters who 
had come to hear the "Little Giant" (as they 
fondly termed him) lay out Lincoln, went home 
thinking, and those of us who stood with Lincoln 
went home dead-sure that we were right. 

At Freeport, a few days prior to the Jonesboro 
debate, Lincoln had put the question to Douglas 
whether the people of a territory, prior to its ad- 
mission as a state, could exclude slavery. When 
friends of his to whom he confided his intention 
of asking that question tried to dissuade him from 

119 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

doing so, pointed out that Douglas would answer 
that slavery could not exist in a territory unless 
the people desired it, and that such an answer 
would win for him the senatorship for which they 
were then contending, Lincoln, with that same 
far-away look and a quiet smile replied: "Gen- 
tlemen, I am killing larger game; if Douglas an- 
swers he can never be president, and the battle of 
1860 is worth a hundred of this." Lincoln asked 
the question at Freeport, Douglas had answered 
as expected, and at Jonesboro I had the distinc- 
tion of hearing the great Lincoln pick the Doug- 
las sophistry into shreds. Since then I have often 
wondered if, as he sat there on the platform with 
the serious, dreamy look in his eyes, he might be 
then looking forward to the "battle of 1860 which 
is worth a hundred of this." That occasion I 
have always treasured as one of the things of my 
life which was worth living for, and, as I decided 
shortly after that, worth dying for if necessary. 



120 



CHAPTER XIV 

MY STUDENT DAYS 

When I approached the time to determine what 
vocation in life I should follow, my mind was 
well made up that I would be a doctor. Father 
wanted me to stay on the farm and follow the in- 
dependent though then somewhat irksome occu- 
pation of farmer; but I had no taste for such a 
life, and convinced him that he should allow me 
to follow my own inclination. It has been said 
that when a boy is too lazy to work, too honest for 
a lawyer and too wayward for a clergyman, he 
should become a doctor. Father probably took 
that view of the situation and gave his consent. 

My general education when I began the study 
of medicine was what had been acquired in the 
rural schools in our neighborhood, supplemented 
by an attendance at the school in Benton for about 
nine months, where there were better and more 
extended facilities than we had in the country. 
This schooling, together with what general in- 
formation I had been able to absorb from reading 
everything which came within my reach, consti- 
tuted my education at the age of twenty. 

In the early winter of 1858, soon after attending 
121 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

the Jonesboro debate between Lincoln and Doug- 
las, I began a study of medicine and surgery in the 
office of Doctor Francis Ronalds, of Benton, who 
was my first preceptor. He was himself young in 
the profession, having been graduated from Rush 
College, in Chicago, in 1856, establishing himself 
in Benton, where he continued his practice until 
the spring of 1860, when he removed to Grayville, 
111., where he died just a few years ago at the ripe 
age of eighty, loved and respected by all who ever 
knew him. Doctor Ronalds as a man was morally 
clean and without a blemish; as a physician he 
was conscientiously devoted to his profession, 
the night never being too dark nor the way too 
long or dreary, nor the weather too forbidding 
to deter him from answering the call of distress. 
His code of ethics was the Golden Rule. He 
never spoke disparagingly of a brother physician ; 
never hawked his patient's ailments about town; 
and never tried to win patients or practice away 
from other doctors. He was a man and a physi- 
cian of a type that, unfortunately, is all too 
scarce. 

I studied in Doctor Ronalds' office during the 
winter of 1858-59, and went back to the farm in 
the spring to help my father with his work. When 
the crops were garnered in the fall, I accepted 
employment in a drug store in McLeansboro for 
a couple of months to aid me both financially and 
in my study of medicine. Then I returned to 

122 



MY STUDENT DAYS 



Benton to resume my study under Doctor Ronalds 
and remained with him until he moved away in 
1860, when I went into the office of Doctor Isaac 
M. Neeley, with whom I studied until I went to 
school in St. Louis in the fall of 1860. Dr. Neeley 
was a splendid man and a good physician, and 
lived to a good old age, passing away not many 
years ago in Evanston at the home of his splendid 
son, Charles G. Neeley, who will be remembered 
as assistant states attorney of Cook County dur- 
ing the incumbency of Judge Longenecker, and 
later as a judge of the Circuit Court of Cook 
County. 

While studying in Doctor Neeley's office in the 
summer of 1860, the first Republican convention 
held in Franklin County convened in the court- 
house at Benton. Political feeling was running 
very high at that time, and as there were but few 
Republicans in Franklin County and as I was 
strong in that faith, naturally I took part in that 
convention, in which I was honored by being 
chosen secretary. It was in the course of that 
campaign that I became acquainted with a man, 
then of a political faith opposed to mine but who 
was destined to become one of the great leaders 
of the Republican party and a heroic figure of his 
time. I refer to that stalwart American and dis- 
tinguished soldier, General John Alexander 
Logan, known to his friends as "Black Jack," on 
account of his heavy black hair, dark eyes and 

123 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

swarthy complexion. Logan lived in Benton at 
the time, and was a candidate for Congress on 
the Democratic ticket in our Congressional Dis- 
trict, then the 9th. 

At the solicitation of and on promise of finan- 
cial aid by some local Democratic business men, 
two young brothers from northern Illinois by 
the name of Sellers had recently come to Benton 
and established a paper to spread Democratic doc- 
trine. It came to the knowledge of some of we 
young Republicans that the Sellers boys were at 
heart Republicans, that the Democrats had failed 
to make good on their promise of support, and 
that they owed the boys $600. Thinking it would 
be a great political coup to change the policy of 
the paper in that hotbed of democracy and south- 
ern sympathizers, we young Republicans agreed 
to raise the money if the Sellers brothers would 
change the policy of their paper to the Republican 
cause, which they agreed to do. 

The deal was made and a proof sheet was print- 
ed when Logan learned that his home paper was 
to be turned against him. He was away at the 
time campaigning but hurriedly returning to Ben- 
ton he gathered some of his political associates 
and went down to interview the editors, they 
stating later that they were threatened by the 
Democrats with violence if they persisted in their 
determination to change the policy of the paper. 
After supper we Republicans went to the news- 

124 



MY STUDENT DAYS 



paper office where we found the Democrats on 
guard, as mad as hornets. While one of our party 
interviewed Logan, I went into the typeroom 
where I found the Sellers boys frightened nearly 
out of their boots. On being asked what had be- 
come of the proof sheet one of them pointed to 
an old Franklin stove in the room which was not 
in use, of course, as it was then mid-summer. 
About midnight two of our gang went back to 
the newspaper office, and finding the Democratic 
guard asleep one of them went in through the 
window, got the proof sheets out of the stove and 
took it back to the hotel, where our orator and 
publicity man, Dick Richardson, wrote a highly 
colored account of the proceedings, which narra- 
tive, together with the proof sheet, was sent to 
the Chicago Tribune, which printed thousands 
of copies containing the facsimile reproduction 
of the proof sheet and Richardson's narrative. 
In that way we were able to make greater political 
capital out of the transaction than if we had 
secured the Benton paper. 

In the fall of 1860 I went to attend lectures and 
clinics at the medical school of Washington Uni- 
versity in St. Louis. I was influenced in my selec- 
tion by the fact that Washington University had 
an exceptionally strong faculty in its medical de- 
partment. The Professor of Surgery was Doctor 
Charles A. Pope, who had studied in Paris under 
Valpeau, then reputed to be the greatest surgeon 

125 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

in the world. Pope was a splendid lecturer and 
an able demonstrator of surgery. The Professor 
of Pathology and Medicine was Doctor M. L. 
Linton, who had spent some time in Paris under 
the tutelage of the great Andral, the best in his- 
tory, and who is more often quoted in works on 
internal medicine than any other authority. I 
remember well his first lecture to our class, the 
first sentence of which was, "All disease is the 
result of a qualitative or quantitative change in 
the blood." The Professor of Physiology was 
Doctor J. W. Waters, a logical thinker and a pol- 
ished speaker. He was the first one I knew of 
who advocated the open air treatment of tuber- 
culosis, and that was long before the bacillus of 
the disease was discovered. In addition to these 
there were many other able teachers, including 
John B. Johnson, Professor of Clinical Medicine ; 
M. A. Pallon, Professor of Obstetrics and Dis- 
eases of Women and Children; W. M. McPheters, 
Professor of Materia Medica and Pharmacy; and 
E. H. Gregory, Professor of Clinical Surgery and 
Surgical Anatomy. 

When I began the study of medicine in the late 
50's, the science was undergoing a change from 
the old antiphlogistic method of treatment to a 
saner and more conservative method. Hitherto 
the practice had been to administer copious doses 
of calomel, jalap, and tartar emetic, to bleed the 
patient freely and to put a generous fly blister over 

126 



MY STUDENT DAYS 



the diseased part. When the doctor called on the 
morrow, if the patient was not better or mori- 
bund, the treatment was given again. In the prac- 
tice in my student days, bleeding had been elimi- 
nated by well-informed physicians, and the size 
of doses had been materially diminished, as had 
also the dimensions and severity of the blisters; 
and, just contrary to the former practice and its 
enervating effect, tonics and stimulants were given 
to sustain the patient. 

It was required of a student that he read all the 
authorities obtainable on the different branches of 
medical education and especially on physiology 
and anatomy, which were very dry and hard to 
learn. The books available had few illustrations 
and those were indifferently executed wood cuts. 
The other branches were recreation compared to 
physiology and anatomy. 

When the student tired of studying and trying 
to assimilate theoretical knowledge, he was set to 
the practical task of compounding medicine, mak- 
ing pills, tinctures and ointments. We had no 
gelatine capsules, compressed tablets or sugar 
coated pills; and we had no temperature ther- 
mometers nor hypodermic syringes as now. The 
doctors in those days carried their medicine in 
pill bags, large enough to hold all their different 
remedies. 

All the teaching in the medical schools was by 
lectures, and a professor in a medical college nec- 

127 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

essarily must be a good lecturer. We had six 
lectures each day, and it kept the students busy 
to keep up. There were six students boarding 
where I boarded, and we made a compact that 
after supper we would get together, take up 
the subjects seriatim, when one of us would state 
what he remembered of the lecture and others who 
remembered some points that were forgotten by 
the speaker would add them. By that means we 
got a clear insight into the subject, and at the 
same time cultivated the memory. 

This grind kept up until after the holidays, 
when secession was loudly talked by many of the 
students, a majority of them being from the 
South. Strange to say, there were no outbreaks 
of hostility among the students, due, I think, to 
a talk Professor Pope gave the boys when we saw 
the storm coming. He was a southern man and a 
Democrat, yet he was a strong unionist. He said, 
"While the rupture of the Union would be a de- 
plorable calamity, we must not lose sight of the 
fact that we were gentlemen and had selected 
the highest calling known to man." We heard 
no more talk of secession for some time, when 
one morning Dr. Pope read a note from a student 
by the name of Jordan, who was from North Caro- 
lina, a candidate for graduation, asking that he be 
examined that he might go home and enter the 
Confederate Army. Dr. Pope said, "No man will 
be examined until the regular time at the close 

128 



MY STUDENT DAYS 



of the school." That put a stop to requests of that 
kind, and in a few days Jordan left school as did 
some others. 

When I arrived in St. Louis to attend college, 
political sentiment was at high tide. Lincoln and 
Hamlin were running at the head of the Republi- 
can ticket; opposed to them were Stephen A. 
Douglas and Johnson on the regular Democratic 
ticket. Douglas* advocacy of Squatter Sover- 
eignty had made him persona non grata to the 
Southern Democrats, who stood for the Taney 
decision in the Dred Scott case that the people of 
a territory could not exclude slavery from its 
limits ; and these unregenerated Democrats bolted 
the Baltimore convention in which Douglas was 
nominated and held a convention in Charleston, 
S. C., where they nominated as their candidates 
Breckenridge and Lane as straight out slavery 
advocates. Another ticket was in the field called 
the Native American ticket, at the head of which 
was John Bell, of Tennessee, leading the remnants 
of the Whig and No Nothing parties. In St. 
Louis I heard the burning issues of the campaign 
discussed by such oratorical heavy weights as 
Stephen A. Douglas, Schuyler Colfax, Francis P. 
Blair, John J. Crittenden and a host of lesser 
lights. 

St. Louis had a large German population which 
was, with few exceptions, loyal and Republican 
in politics. Word was passed around that loyal 

129 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

students might vote if they so desired in the Ger- 
man district, so on election day I went down to 
the south end of the city and voted for Lincoln 
and Hamlin. The election officials in that pre- 
cinct were all Germans. They asked me but two 
questions, my name and age. I presume, strictly 
speaking, it was illegal, but I had the supreme sat- 
isfaction of casting a vote in a slave state for my 
political idol, Abraham Lincoln, of blessed mem- 
ory. The election in the nation at large resulted 
in a triumphant victory for Lincoln, who secured 
180 electoral votes out of a total of 303, of which 
Douglas received only 12, although he had a large 
popular vote. 

Following the election the feeling daily ran 
higher and higher with the result that many peo- 
ple left St. Louis bound either north or south as 
their sympathies dictated. On December 17, 1860, 
a convention in South Carolina passed a resolu- 
tion declaring that it had seceded from the Union ; 
by the first of February, 1861, six other of the 
slave states had declared for secession, and on 
February 4th a convention of delegates from these 
states was held in Montgomery, Ala., where a 
constitution was framed and a government organ- 
ized under the name, "Confederate States of 
America," of which Jefferson Davis, of Missis- 
sippi, was chosen president, and Alexander H. 
Stevens, of Georgia, was chosen vice-president. 
By the sufferance if not the co-operation of Presi- 

130 



MY STUDENT DAYS 



dent Buchanan, the rebels were allowed to seize 
many United States military establishments and 
government munitions of war located in the se- 
ceding states; but some of these under the com- 
mand of loyal Union officers refused thus to aid 
and abet the enemy. Among the places which 
held out was Fort Sumter, in Charleston harbor, 
which was immediately invested by the rebels 
with a view to its capture. 



131 



CHAPTER XV 
WAR! 

Just one week after the organization of the Con- 
federacy, President Lincoln left his home in 
Springfield on his trip to Washington to be inaug- 
urated chief executive of the nation. Standing on 
the car platform, he bade his friends in Springfield 
an affectionate farewell. As if in prophecy, he 
said to them among other things: "Here I have 
lived a quarter of a century, and have passed from a 
young to an old man. Here my children have been 
born, and one is buried. I now leave, not knowing 
when or whether ever I may return, with a task 
before me greater than that which rested upon 
Washington." In his last few days at Springfield 
Lincoln had composed his inaugural address and 
carried it to Washington with him. It was an 
argument against the fallacious assumption that 
two separate governments could be made out of 
the nation, and also a powerful plea to the South to 
refrain from taking the threatened step. It closed 
with these memorable words : 

"I am loath to close. We are not enemies, but 
friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion 
may have strained, it must not break our bonds of 
132 



WAR! 



affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching 
from every battle-field and patriot grave to every 
living heart and hearthstone all over this broad land, 
will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again 
touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels 
of our nature." 

In the month of February, soon after the forma- 
tion of the Confederate government, a number of 
loyal men in St. Louis met and organized a com- 
mittee of safety. Among those who participated 
in the movement were Doctor Pope of our faculty, 
Doctor Hammer, Captain Nathaniel Lyon, Con- 
gressman Francis P. Blair and Henry T. Blow. It 
was through the efforts of this organization that 
the rebel "Camp Jackson" at St. Louis was broken 
up in May following, which action saved St. Louis, 
and probably southern Illinois to the Union cause. 
In recognition of his loyal and brave services in 
this undertaking Lyon was made a Brigadier- 
General. 

Following the inauguration of President Lin- 
coln, events moved rapidly to the inevitable clash 
of arms. The morale of our school was so badly 
disturbed by the departure of the students, par- 
ticularly those from the South, to take up arms 
that the term was brought to an end much earlier 
than usual, about April 1, 1861. 

When I got home to southern Illinois, everybody 
was anxiously looking for the next move ; and we 
did not have long to wait, for, on the 12th of April, 

133 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

at 4:00 A. M., the first gun was fired on Fort Sum- 
ter. That, like the firing of the first gun at Con- 
cord, in the beginning of the Revolutionary War, 
was heard around the world, and was the death 
knell of the dogma that one man had the Divine 
right to own another man. At first, every person 
in the North stood as if stunned by a blow; but 
soon they were aroused as if by an electric shock 
when Lincoln issued his call for 75,000 volunteers. 
All over the Northland the cry went up : "The 
Union must and shall be preserved." In every 
humble village, town and city was heard the hum 
of preparation for war. The merchant left his 
counting room, the lawyer his brief, the physician 
his patients, the farmer his plow, the carpenter his 
plane and saw, the blacksmith his forge, the 
teacher his school; every trade, profession and 
calling was represented in the army. This was 
impressed upon me later when we landed in Padu- 
cah, Kentucky. All the citizens left town and as 
our General in command had taken possession of a 
newspaper office, and wanted some typesetters and 
printers, he made a request of a Chicago regiment 
in his command, and it was found that there were 
more than twenty men in the regiment who knew 
the printer's trade. I never heard of a case where 
there was not a man at hand for any work, general 
or special, that was required, as there was not a 
trade nor a calling that was not well represented in 
the army. All were volunteers, who did not enlist 

134 



WAR! 



for the paltry pay they received, but there was a 
higher motive that actuated them Patriotism. 

I enlisted in the first company raised in our 
vicinity, but our organization did not get into the 
service until about the first of August, 1861. We 
organized our regiment at Sandoval, and elected 
Stephen G. Hicks, Colonel; George W. Booth, Lieu- 
tenant Colonel; and John B. Smith, Major; and 
took a train on the I. C. R. R. (main line) and went 
to Camp Butler, near Springfield, Illinois, where 
we were sworn into the United States service. 
From there we went to St. Louis, detraining on the 
Illinois side in the night, and sleeping in the sand. 
We had no tents or camp equipage and nothing to 
cook. 

A very amusing incident occurred there. Early 
in the morning a man brought a wagon load of 
watermelons in to sell to the boys. They were 
hungry and had little or no money; but they 
wanted watermelons. A number of them climbed 
onto the wagon and would ask the man what a 
melon was worth, and while he was talking to this 
soldier a number of melons were thrown off by 
other soldiers and caught by soldiers on the 
ground, who ran off with them. The man began 
to take in the situation and realized that his melons 
were disappearing, and that he had little money 
for them, so he picked up his reins, whipped up his 
team and left. 

We did not remain there long, being taken 
135 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

aboard a boat which landed us at Jefferson Bar- 
racks, the United States military post on the Mis- 
sissippi river, a few miles south of St. Louis on the 
Missouri side, where we were to be furnished with 
arms, ammunition and equipment. While waiting 
there, the battle of Wilson's Creek, near Spring- 
field in southwestern Missouri, was fought, in 
which the Union army was defeated and General 
Nathaniel Lyon, in command, was killed. On the 
day this unwelcome news reached us, I was away 
from camp on a fishing trip with a man by the 
name of Miller; and on our return, lo and behold! 
our camp had disappeared there was not a man in 
sight. There was a boat down at the landing, how- 
ever, so we went over to see if we could learn what 
had become of our regiment, which we found hud- 
dled on the bank of the river near the boat landing. 
There was great excitement among the men over 
the defeat of our army at Wilson's Creek; one 
rumor having it that "Lyon had been killed, and 
his army exterminated, and the victorious enemy 
were marching on to St. Louis." 

Not long after Miller and I had joined the boys 
on the river bank, where, it was very apparent, they 
were glad to be in such a favorable location for 
embarking and getting out of that country, the 
14th Illinois regiment marched down to the river, 
got aboard the boat which was in waiting and 
steamed up the river. It then transpired that the 
order to our regiment to embark had been given in 

136 



WAR! 



error, the Orderly from General Curtis, our com- 
manding officer, taking the order to our regiment, 
the 40th, instead of to the 14th for whom it was 
intended. The men of our regiment slept on the 
bank of the river that night, and returned next 
morning to the camp they had quit so hastily only 
the afternoon before ; and it was humorously com- 
mented upon at the time that some of our men in 
leaving the camp had carried loads alone of which 
they could not lift one end on the return the next 
morning. 

After a further short stay at Jefferson Barracks, 
we were ordered to Bird's Point, at the junction 
of the Ohio and Mississippi rivers, where we re- 
mained only a short time and then moved on to 
Paducah, Kentucky, where a permanent military 
post was established. We went to Paducah by 
boat, reaching there some time before daylight, 
and, as we had been warned to be on the lookout 
there for the enemy, we were transferred to a 
wharfboat, which is a floating dock and passenger 
and freight station combined, to await the coming 
of the daylight. In the interim some of our fel- 
lows found a number of barrels of whiskey on the 
wharfboat which they opened up in short order 
and drew off the beverage that cheers and inebri- 
ates in mess-pans, camp kettles and every other re- 
ceptacle at hand, passing it around as ice-water. 
My readers can imagine the condition of our 
troops as they marched (?) ashore in the morning, 

137 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

possibly to engage in battle with the enemy. I 
can not recall anything in comic opera which 
struck me so funny as their serious attempt, under 
the circumstances, to present a military bearing. 
What added to the humor of the situation was the 
*act that the citizens appeared to be terror-stricken 
at the approach of the soldiers, and were seized 
with an immediate desire to leave town, employing 
any and all kinds of conveyances for the purpose, 
including drays, wagons, express carts, push carts, 
wheelbarrows, baby cabs or anything that would 
hold a trunk. Never before nor since have I seen 
such a general exodus of inhabitants ; and when I 
think of that exhibition of terror at the approach 
of our then opera bouffe troop, I can not refrain 
from laughing, even to this day. By noon the town 
was practically deserted. And so it happened that 
our troops, full of bravery and corn juice, captured 
Paducah without firing a shot or shedding a drop 
of blood, and with no casualties save here and there 
"an awful head" following the battle with the 
barrels. 

We went into camp on the edge of town, al- 
though, to this day, I am unable to say whether on 
the north or on the south edge. Whether it was 
due to the fumes of the liquor which I was forced 
to inhale on the wharf boat, or whether I was just 
turned around, I have never been able to deter- 
mine, but all the while we were there the sun 
appeared to me to rise in the west and set in the 

138 



WAR! 



east. Our purpose in going to Paducah was to 
establish a military base and a fort to guard the 
mouth of the Tennessee river, which emptied into 
the Ohio at that point. A marine hospital already 
built at Paducah served as the nucleus of our estab- 
lishment, and around it we built a^prt which was 
named Fort Anderson in honor of the Major of 
that name who was in command at Fort Sumter 
when it was fired upon. It later was proven that 
our mission was not in vain, for later in the war 
when Fort Anderson was in command of our Col- 
onel, Stephen G. Hicks, with a force of less than 
500 troops, mostly negroes, he held the Confed- 
erate General Forrest at bay with 4,000 seasoned 
troops. 

While we were at Fort Anderson, the post was in 
command of General Charles F. Smith, a gentle- 
man and a soldier. In addition to a few companies 
of cavalry and artillery with which I did not come 
into contact and which, consequently, I do not re- 
member, the command was made up of the follow- 
ing regiments and commanders: 9th Illinois In- 
fantry, under command of Colonel Mercier; 12th 
Illinois Infantry, under command of Colonel John 
MacArthur, who became a Major General before 
the war was over; 40th Illinois Infantry, under 
command of Colonel Stephen G. Hicks; 41st Illi- 
nois Infantry under command of Colonel Isaac 
C. Pugh; 8th Missouri Infantry, under command 
of Colonel Morgan L. Smith, who rose to the rank 

139 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

of Major General; llth Indiana Infantry, under 
command of Colonel Lew Wallace, later a Major 
General, and after the war was appointed to the 
position of U. S. Minister to Turkey, but is best 
known as the author of many interesting novels, 
including the widely read "Ben Hur"; and the 
23rd Indiana Infantry, under Colonel Maginnis. 

Paducah at that time was a small town of that 
class in which many of the well-to-do owned cows 
from which the family table was supplied with 
milk and butter ; and a number of these left behind 
by the fleeing inhabitants were atracted to our 
camp by feeding them salt, of which cattle are very 
fond; then we got to feeding them and, inciden- 
tally, milking them, so that we had a generous 
supply of fresh milk. Gradually the people of the 
town returned to their homes after they learned 
that we were settling down apparently for a long 
stay, and that we were not the kind of beasts which 
the Apostle John saw rise out of the sea, as de- 
scribed in the 13th Chapter of Revelation, which 
has been ingeniously construed of late as a pro- 
phetic allegory depicting the career of the present 
ruler of the German people. Those who returned 
were mostly women and children, as many of the 
men of military age had gone into the Confederate 
army. 

While in the camp at Paducah I saw one of the 
worst cases of nostalgia, or homesickness, that I 
can remember. I suffered an attack of fever late 

140 



WAR! 



in October which laid me up in bed for several 
days, and as we had no hospital accommodations at 
the time, an empty frame house near by was im- 
pressed for such service. While convalescing, a 
soldier of the name of Miller came in to visit me 
one day, and after fidgeting around a few minutes, 
observed that he believed he would go out and cut 
some wood for my fire. He had been gone but a 
minute or two, during which time I heard two or 
three blows of an ax, when he came in and an- 
nounced that he had cut his finger. On examina- 
tion, I found that his index, or "trigger" finger 
and the middle' finger on his right hand had been 
hacked in two or three places and almost severed 
from the hand. The injury and the surrounding 
circumstances indicated so certainly that it was 
self-inflicted that I accused him of doing it pur- 
posely, which he did not deny. Our camp surgeon 
finished the job by amputating both fingers, which 
the soldier was willing to endure, with the conse- 
quent disgrace, in order to get back home. The 
incident was reported to the War Department, and 
in due course an order was received discharging 
Miller from the service, which created much mer- 
riment when read in accordance with established 
custom at dress parade that "Lowrie Miller is dis- 
honorably discharged from the service for cutting 
off two fingers of his right hand. By order of the 
Secretary of War." Unfortunately, there were 
many such pathetic incidents in the course of the 
war. 

141 



CHAPTER XVI 
THE RISE OF GENERAL GRANT 

I have always congratulated myself on the fact 
that all my military service was in the command 
of Ulysses S. Grant, the greatest military genius 
this country has so far produced. Although a grad- 
uate of West Point and a subordinate officer in the 
Mexican War, he had never distinguished himself 
particularly in his previous service. When the 
Civil War broke out, he was in Galena, Illinois, en- 
gaged with his father and brothers in operating a 
mercantile business, but forthwith raised a com- 
pany of volunteers and offered his services to our 
War Governor Yates, who found him useful in or- 
ganizing the State forces at Springfield. He was 
appointed Colonel of the 21st Illinois Infantry and 
had gone to Jefferson Barracks with it when, 
through the influence of Congressman Washburne 
of the Galena District, he was commissioned a 
Brigadier-General and placed in command of the 
land forces at Cairo, which, in conjunction with a 
fleet of iron-clads under Commodore Foote, were 
to drive the Confederates out of Kentucky and 
Tennessee. 

When the war began, the State executive offi- 
cials of Kentucky attempted to adopt a policy of 
neutrality, under which they proposed to prevent 

142 



THE RISE OF GENERAL GRANT 

either the Union or Confederate armies from "in- 
vading" the State, the practical effect of which 
was to relieve the South from defending them- 
selves from that quarter, through preventing the 
Union forces from crossing the State. While pub- 
licly thus pretending neutrality, the same officials 
were secretly encouraging the recruiting, under 
General S. B. Buckner, of a "State militia" which 
was held, however, subject to the orders of the 
Confederate Government. The Kentucky Legis- 
lature, representing the majority of the people of 
the State who were loyal, stood against secession. 
In this critical situation, in September, 1861, Gen- 
eral Albert Sidney Johnston was placed in com- 
mand of the Confederate armies in the West, with 
headquarters at Bowling Green, and it devolved 
upon him to defend Kentucky, Tennessee and the 
Mississippi river. 

The assumed "neutrality" of Kentucky was vio- 
lated first by the South, General Leonidas Polk 
(a graduate of West Point and later Episcopal 
Bishop of Louisiana) occupying Columbus, on the 
Mississippi, on September 3. Grant, whose com- 
mand we had joined at Bird's Point, replied 
promptly by sending us into Paducah on Sep- 
tember 5, which gave him control of the mouth of 
the Tennessee, a river which was navigable into 
northern Alabama in the heart of the confederacy. 
When General Johnston took command of the 
Confederate forces at Bowling Green, he saw the 

143 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

strategic value of the position taken by Grant and 
at once made a bid for Kentucky sentiment by 
issuing a proclamation in which he pompously 
offered to respect Kentucky's "neutrality" and 
withdraw his army if he could be assured that the 
Union commanders would do the same. If he 
had any idea he could put anything like that over 
Grant, he had occasion very soon to learn that he 
had not correctly estimated the man who had a 
reputation for doing a great deal of thinking and 
smoking but not much talking. 

Foreseeing possible attacks via the Tennessee 
and Cumberland rivers, the Confederates had 
erected forts on them just over the border into 
Tennessee, out of respect to Kentucky's pro- 
claimed neutrality. This accounts for the loca- 
tion of Fort Henry on the east bank of the Ten- 
nessee and Fort Donelson on the west bank of the 
Cumberland, immediately south of the Kentucky 
state line, just eleven miles apart. These forts, 
with Columbus on the Mississippi, the head- 
quarters of General Johnston at Bowling Green, 
and an armed camp at Cumberland Gap, where 
Kentucky, Tennessee and Virginia converge, con- 
stituted Johnston's line of defense, the key to 
which were the two river forts. Johnston had in 
all about 43,000 troops, indifferently accoutred and 
disposed as effectively as was possible over his 
line, about 300 miles long. 

Opposed to him were General Buell with an 
144 



THE RISE OF GENERAL GRANT 

army of 45,000 at Louisville and General Halleck 
at St. Louis, in chief command in Missouri, in- 
cluding that part of Kentucky in which Grant 
was then operating west of the Cumberland. Buell 
and Halleck were of equal rank and both superior 
to Grant, who was thus in a position, as it were, 
to be ground between the upper and nether mill- 
stones. 

Having made his position safe at the mouth of 
the Tennessee, Grant next proceeded to command 
the mouth of the Cumberland, which emptied into 
the Ohio river twelve or fifteen miles above the 
mouth of the Tennessee, which was about sixty 
miles north of the junction of the Ohio and the 
Mississippi. What might appear as an anomaly 
in nature to anyone not familiar with the topogra- 
phy of the country is the fact that while the 
mighty Mississippi flows south, the Tennessee and 
the Cumberland, a short distance to the east, flow 
northward. through Kentucky side by side, at one 
place being not more than five miles apart. These 
two rivers rise in and drain the southern slopes 
of the Appalachian mountain range. 

Some time about the first of November, 1861, a 
force was sent to occupy the little town of Smith- 
land on the west side of the Cumberland river 
where it enters the Ohio. Company A, to which 
I belonged, and Company F of the 40th Regiment, 
two companies of the 41st Illinois, one company 
of the 12th Illinois, a troop of cavalry and a bat- 

145 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

tery of artillery made up the force, which was in 
command of Lieutenant-Colonel A. L. Chetlain, 
of the 12th Illinois, with Major John Warner, 
of the 41st Illinois, next in command. We had 
little to do there aside from guard duty and build- 
ing earthworks. It was too cold to do much 
drilling. 

At Columbus, on high ground overlooking the 
Mississippi about twenty miles below Cairo, the 
Confederates had erected fortifications which 
earned for it the title "Gibraltar of the West." On 
the Missouri shore opposite was the little town of 
Belmont, also occupied by the Confederates, 
against which Grant led a surprise attack on No- 
vember 7 and routed the garrison, although his 
force was compelled to withdraw under the fire of 
the big guns on the heights of Columbus. This 
reconnaissance filled Grant with confidence of his 
ability to cope with the enemy, and he began im- 
mediately to urge General Halleck, his superior 
officer, to allow him to lead his forces against 
Forts Henry and Donelson. To the suggestion 
that these forts could be reduced Halleck replied, 
"I can make, with the gunboats and available 
troops, a pretty formidable demonstration, but no 
real attack." 

Grant continued to urge an assault upon the 
forts, a part of his plans including an attack from 
the water side by the fleet of gunboats then sta- 
tioned at Cairo under the command of Commodore 

146 



THE RISE OF GENERAL GRANT 

Foote, with whom General Grant was in close and 
cordial co-operation- On January 28, 1862, Grant 
urgently wired General Halleck, "With permis- 
sion, I will take Fort Henry on the Tennessee." 
Halleck, no longer able to withstand the im- 
portunities, wired permission. On February 6 
Grant had the satisfaction of sending to Halleck 
the laconic message, "Fort Henry is ours." 

While he had instructions to take and hold 
Fort Henry, Grant went further than his instruc- 
tions authorized by proceeding to invest Fort 
Donelson, eleven miles east of Fort Henry on the 
west bank of the Cumberland river. This was a 
more serious enterprise. When General Tilgh- 
man, commandant at Fort Henry, had seen that he 
could not hold out against the Union forces, he 
sent his garrison to re-enforce Fort Donelson, 
which was under the combined command of 
Major-Generals Floyd and Pillow and Brigadier- 
General Simon Bolivar Buckner, the latter the 
same who was a candidate for Vice-President on 
the Gold Democratic ticket in 1896. General 
Albert Sidney Johnston evacuated his head- 
quarters at Bowling Green in order to send all the 
re-enforcements possible "to defend Nashville at 
Donelson." There, it was determined, was to be 
the test of strength between the forces under Gen- 
eral Grant and the forces of General Johnston's 
command. 

Fort Donelson was in an exceptionally strong 
147 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

position for defense; from its position on high 
ground adjoining the river, it commanded not 
only the water approach for miles but the land 
approach as well. As Grant's investing lines be- 
gan to tighten around the fort, after the gunboats 
under Commodore Foote had been repulsed, the 
Confederate generals, relying on the superior 
numbers of the garrison, decided to attack the 
besiegers. Unfortunately, on the morning the at- 
tack was staged, General Grant was some distance 
down the river conferring with Commodore Foote 
on the plans of what he conjectured might be a 
protracted siege. Being informed of the Confed- 
erate attack, he hastened to the scene of the action 
where he found the Union forces in a state of dis- 
order bordering on disintegration. In order to en- 
courage his own forces and, as he afterward ex- 
plained, to prevent the enemy from sensing his 
dilemma, he ordered a charge through which he 
regained what had been lost during the day. 

That night was a serious one for Grant, and 
probably the turning point of his career. He was 
in the position of the fellow who had a bull by 
the tail who was afraid to hold on and did not 
dare to let go. Fortunately the leaders on the 
other side were more alarmed than Grant. They 
saw themselves settling down to a long siege, cut 
off from communication, with ultimate defeat 
staring them in the face. 

In this extremity General Floyd, whose official 
148 



THE RISE OF GENERAL GRANT 

acts as Secretary of War in President Buchanan's 
cabinet had earned for him a Federal indictment 
in Washington, which was then pending, opined 
that it would not be well for him to be caught at 
that time, so he passed the command along to Gen- 
eral Pillow, who, in turn, allowed that he also 
would be of more service to the Confederacy with- 
in the Confedrate lines than he would as a pris- 
oner of war in the North. In this way the 
command was passed along to General Buckner, 
and there being no officer present to whom he 
could pass the buck, he assumed command and 
immediately, about three o'clock in the morning, 
sent word to General Grant that he was prepared 
to discuss terms of surrender. Grant replied, "No 
terms will be considered except immediate and 
unconditional surrender. I propose to move at 
once upon your works." General Buckner ob- 
jected to the abruptness and lack of courtesy in 
Grant's correspondence, but considered that the 
best thing which he could do would be to sur- 
render, which he did. Accordingly, on February 
16, 1862, ten days after the surrender of Fort 
Henry, Grant wired to General Halleck, "We have 
taken Fort Donelson, and from twelve to fifteen 
thousand prisoners." General Halleck immediate- 
ly telegraphed to the Secretary of War as fol- 
lows: "Make Buell, Grant and Pope Major-Gen- 
erals of volunteers, and give me command in the 
West. I ask this in return for Forts Henry and 

149 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

Donelson." At the same time, he was preparing 
to discipline General Grant for his hasty and un- 
authorized movements which resulted in the fall 
of the two forts. 

Washington heeded a portion of Halleck's 
recommendation by making Grant a Major-Gen- 
eral of Volunteers, although still subordinate to 
General Halleck. It was Grant's idea to follow 
up the victory at Donelson by starting immediate- 
ly in pursuit of General Johnston with his main 
army, then retiring precipitately from his head- 
quarters at Bowling Green to Corinth, Missis- 
sippi, an exhausting retreat of three hundred 
miles; but on strict orders of General Halleck, 
Grant remained at Fort Donelson, practically a 
prisoner, for ten days, which was enough to allow 
Johnston to mobilize at Corinth, Mississippi, all 
the Confederate troops in the western theater. 
Then President Lincoln himself took a hand and 
started the movement which resulted in moving 
the fleet of Commodore Foote up the Tennessee 
river to Pittsburg Landing, together with all the 
Union forces which could be spared from Fort 
Donelson, under General Grant, who was to wait 
at Pittsburg Landing, twenty miles from Corinth, 
until General Buell with the Army of the Cum' 
berland could join him, when, with their com- 
bined forces, they could attack General Johnstor 
at the place he was then resting waiting to givf 
battle. 

150 



CHAPTER XVII 
ON THE WAY TO SHILOH 

On account of the assignment of my company 
to guard the mouth of the Cumberland at Smith- 
land, I did not take an active part in the cam- 
paigns that led up to the capture of Forts Henry 
and Donelson. Soon after the surrender of the 
latter, however, my company was ordered back 
to Paducah, and was detailed to string a line of 
telegraph wires from Paducah to Fort Henry, 
from thence to Fort Donelson, and from there to 
Clarksville, a city in Tennessee on the Cumber- 
land river about midway between Fort Donelson 
and Nashville. The telegraph line was construct- 
ed through Kentucky on the high ground be- 
tween the Tennessee and Cumberland rivers, and 
took us into a region sparsely populated with a 
primitive, uneducated people, few of whom could 
read or write. There were no school houses, and 
only occasionally a church which the natives in- 
variably called a "meeting house." While only a 
few of the residents of that territory owned 
slaves, the institution was generally approved, 
and many of the preachers in those backwoods 
meeting houses would be found arguing the di- 
vine origin and establishment of human slavery. 

151 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

The telegraph line which we constructed was 
the first in that country, and served to inspire 
the natives with fear, awe and wonder. When 
our construction gang was asked by the natives 
what the wire was for they replied to the effect 
that it was highly charged and that any one fool- 
ing with it might get killed. The wire was not 
disturbed, and for weeks it served as a means of 
communication between our forces advancing on 
Corinth and the base at Paducah. We had with 
us a telegraph operator named Von Volingberg. 
Every evening when we went into camp he would 
rig up an instrument, connecting it with our end 
of the wire, and furnish us with up-to-the-minute 
news from the world. I think it was VonVoling- 
berg who, after the war was over, invented the 
Duplex table that is now universally used by 
telegraphers. 

The route chosen for our line took us through 
the village of Fungo, where, to my surprise, I 
found a very competent physician who had been 
graduated from Jefferson College in Philadel- 
phia. Learning that I knew something about 
medicine, he made my acquaintance and invited 
me to his home to take dinner with him. Not 
having had an opportunity for a long time to 
partake of home cooking, I jumped at the chance, 
and was rewarded with a savory, well-cooked 
meal and a pressing invitation to return for sup- 
per. On my return to the camp in the afternoon, 

152 



ON THE WAY TO SHILOH 



I related my good fortune to Mr. Burlingame, the 
man in charge of our construction work, who 
asked if he could not be included in the supper 
invitation ; so when the Doctor came to the camp 
later to get me, I made it a point to introduce 
Mr. Burlingame. In the course of their conver- 
sation they discovered that a cousin of Mr. Bur- 
lingame had been a college classmate of the Doc- 
tor, which secured for Burlingame the coveted 
invitation. 

After we reached the Doctor's home, the con- 
versation between him and my friend continued, 
and so it fell to me to converse with the Doctor's 
wife, who was a very nice appearing lady, aside 
from the fact that she went about her work of 
cooking the supper with a short stick in her 
mouth, which she would remove occasionally to 
expectorate, and from which I came to the con- 
clusion that she was a "snuff dipper." She had 
no cook stove, but followed the primitive method 
of cooking at the open fireplace in a portable 
oven and in skillets. While heating the oven to 
bake biscuits, she removed her snuff stick to spit 
in the fireplace, but made a miscue with the 
result that it landed in the oven. Covered with 
embarrassment she hastily removed the oven, and 
I am fully satisfied that she gave it a thorough 
cleaning, but the incident rather took away my 
taste for homemade biscuits. During the even- 
ing meal Burlingame ate voraciously of biscuits, 

153 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

butter and honey; and on our return to the camp 
while he was still raving about "those delicious 
biscuits," I told him what had happened. The 
information acted as a strong emetic causing 
Burlingame to part with his supper, after which 
I explained to him that she had thoroughly 
cleaned the oven before baking the biscuits. He 
then upbraided me for not telling him that soon- 
er, but I reminded him that he hadn't given me 
time to make that explanation. 

While at Fungo, I was ordered to arrest a gen- 
tleman in the neighborhood named Wright who 
was accused of having given aid and comfort to 
the enemy. It transpired later that he had sold a 
boatload of flour the previous autumn in Nash- 
ville, but not to the Confederate government ; that 
later he had consigned another load to the same 
market, but this had been captured by one of our 
gunboats and confiscated. Mr. Wright did not try 
to evade or resist arrest, but gladly accompanied 
me to camp, and, as he was an elderly gentleman, 
I walked and let him ride my horse. After a brief 
examination, the captain in command of our squad 
offered to release Mr. Wright and allow him to 
return to his home until Monday morning, at 
which time I was detailed to take him to the com- 
manding officer at Fort Henry. At his urgent re- 
quest, however, Captain Hall and I went home 
with him, and we were surprised and delighted 
to find such a refined and cultured home in that 

154 



ON THE WAY TO SHILOH 



God-forsaken country. He was a finely educated 
New Englander who had lived in New Orleans 
and at one time was part owner of the New Or- 
leans Picayune. His wife was a refined lady, in- 
tellectually far above those around her; in fact, 
she was a rose among thorns. We learned inci- 
dentally that she was related to Judge Walter B. 
Scales, of Mt. Vernon, Illinois, Circuit Judge in 
the district in which I lived. After spending a 
very pleasant Sunday, I took Mr. Wright to Fort 
Henry and turned him over to General Lew Wal- 
lace, who released him in short order and had him 
returned to his home under a military escort. 

When we reached Fort Donelson, I took occas- 
ion to call on John A. Logan, hitherto mentioned 
as member of Congress from the district in which 
I lived. He had entered the service as Colonel 
of the 31st Illinois Infantry, and was wounded in 
action at Fort Donelson. For his gallant conduct 
in that battle, he was made a Brigadier-General 
of Volunteers. A story is told of Logan that well 
illustrates his indifference to his own safety and 
his constant regard for the safety of his men. 
On one occasion during battle, he mounted the 
breastworks behind which his command was fight- 
ing, in order to examine the enemy's position with 
his field glasses. While doing so one of his men 
scrambled up and took a position at the side of 
Logan; and when the latter dropped his glasses 
and saw the soldier standing beside him, he im- 

155 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

patiently inquired of him, "What are you doing 

here, you d fool ? Don't you know you are apt 

to get shot?" When I called on him, he had re- 
covered sufficiently to sit up in a rocking chair; 
and his wife, Mary Logan, who had hastened to 
attend him, was busily engaged waiting on the 
wounded. 

After a short stay at Fort Donelson, I was sent 
to Paducah for telegraph supplies, going down 
the Cumberland river on the boat which carried 
the last load of those wounded at Fort Donelson. 
The soldiers were supposed to be taken care of by 
some Confederate surgeons who had been cap- 
tured, but these gentlemen seemed more interested 
in card games than in the suffering around them, 
with the exception of the surgeon of a Georgia 
regiment named Johnston, who gave all of his 
time and attention to the wounded. When we 
landed at Paducah, I looked up some of my com- 
pany who had been left behind because they were 
ill and, finding some of them unfit for military 
service, I recommended at the headquarters of 
General W. T. Sherman that they should be dis- 
charged. I was given the necessary blanks for 
discharges and furloughs and ordered to bring the 
men into his headquarters, which I did. 

Among these was a chronic malingerer who had 
apparently become sicker every day as the prob- 
ability of active service came nearer, but he im- 
proved wonderfully after I suggested to him that 

156 



ON THE WAY TO SHILOH 



he might get a discharge. When I took the men 
before a Major in General Sherman's headquar- 
ters for examination, I arranged it so that the 
malingerer would come last, and asked the Major 
to observe his actions before and after separating 
him from the service. The pretending invalid 
came before the officer on crutches, with great dif- 
ficulty, and after obtaining his discharge labor- 
iously made his way across the street to a bank 
where the paymaster was stationed. As he came 
out of the bank on his crutches, a boat whistled 
and I said to him, "There's your boat; you had 
better hurry." He did; his movements were 
gradually accelerated, so that before he had gone 
two blocks, he had thrown his crutches away as 
so much impedimenta, and was doing a regular 
marathon to reach the boat before it cast off. 

When I reached Fort Donelson with our sup- 
plies, we went ahead with the construction of the 
telegraph line to Clarksville, passing, some four 
miles from Fort Donelson, the iron works of John 
Bell, one of the candidates for president in the 
election in 1860. A short distance beyond his 
place, we struck a railroad which led into Clarks- 
ville, so that all we had to do from then on was 
to repair the wires where they had been cut by 
the retreating confederates. Soon after we 
reached Clarksville, we embarked on a boat which 
took us down the Cumberland back to Paducah, 
and from there on up the Tennessee river to Pitts- 

157 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

burg Landing, where we were to join our com- 
mand under General Grant and await the Army of 
the Cumberland under Buell. We left our boat 
and marched out about three miles on the road to 
Corinth to where our regiment was encamped 
near the old Shiloh church or "meeting house," 
which was destined to be the scene of one of the 
hardest fought battles of the war, and what proved 
to be my first, last and only battle. 

There was a time, as pointed out by General 
Grant, that the Confederacy might have been 
split in twain, when immediately after the fall of 
Fort Donelson, General Johnston's army retreated 
from Nashville and General Folk's garrison evac- 
uated Columbus on the Mississippi, both moving 
with the obvious purpose of joining their forces 
in northern Mississippi to protect the railroads 
on which the South must depend for transporta- 
tion. Had the Union forces vigorously pursued 
the Confederates who escaped from Fort Donel- 
son, and had all of Grant's available forces been 
sent at once up the Tennessee river, the junction 
of the Confederates at Corinth would have been 
forestalled, the battle of Shiloh would have been 
prevented, the Civil War would have been short- 
ened, and thousands of human lives and millions 
in treasure would have been saved. As it was, 
however, plenty of time was given the enemy to 
assemble 40,000 Confederate soldiers, practically 
all those in the western theater, at the important 

158 



ON THE WAY TO SHILOH 



railway junction of Corinth in northern Missis- 
sippi, where it was our announced purpose to at- 
tack them just as soon as Buell with his army 
joined us. 

It undoubtedly was obvious to Johnston that it 
would be better for him to try conclusions with a 
part rather than the combined Union forces, and 
this suggested the idea of attacking us at the 
Landing before we could be reinforced by Buell. 
If, by a sudden descent on the encampment at 
Shiloh, he could stampede us away from the vicin- 
ity of Pittsburg Landing, he would at once de- 
prive us of the support of the gunboats and cut 
off our only means of retreat a brilliant military 
stratagem, which might have succeeded if exe- 
cuted by its able author, but which failed in the 
hands of his successor, just a hair's breadth short 
of success ! 



159 



CHAPTER XVIII 
THE BATTLE OF SHILOH 

General Grant was so intent upon the plan to 
march upon Corinth and destroy the Confederate 
army there under General Albert Sidney Johnston 
that it apparently did not occur to him that the 
pursued might not wait to be attacked in the place 
he had deliberately selected to give battle. As a 
tribute to the generalship of Johnston, it must be 
frankly admitted that he administered a surprise 
to Grant at Shiloh which came perilously near re- 
sulting in a disaster to the Union forces and in an 
early termination of Grant's military career. The 
well-planned attack, however, resulted not only 
in the defeat of the Confederate forces but also 
in the death of their brave and able leader ; while 
Grant's ascending star remained undimmed, the 
net result to him being the addition of an abun- 
dance of caution to his superb military qualifica- 
tions. Never afterward was his command caught 
in a trap like they were at Shiloh. 

As we have before observed, about the middle 
of March, 1862, General Grant began the assem- 
bling of his entire command at Pittsburg Land- 
ing, on the Tennessee river, as being the point 

160 



THE BATTLE OF SHILOH 



most accessible to Corinth and at which troops 
could be unloaded from the transports on which 
they were carried up the river. It was at this 
place that Buell's command was to join Grant for 
a combined attack upon the Confederates assem- 
bled at Corinth. As the troops arrived, they were 
encamped on the high ground to the west of the 
river in the vicinity of the old Shiloh meeting 
house, until, early in April, there were five di- 
visions in all with approximately thirty thousand 
men. No intrenchments nor other precautions 
against attack had been provided. The fifth di- 
vision, under General W. T. Sherman, with which 
our regiment was brigaded, formed the extreme 
outpost, resting on the Purdy and Hamburg road 
about three miles from the landing, as the crow 
flies. Our brigade was the first, composed of the 
6th Iowa, 46th Ohio, 40th Illinois and Behr's Bat- 
tery, forming the right wing of our division with 
Owl Creek to our right. Buckland's brigade was 
near and to our left toward the river. 

Friday, April 4, 1862, was a warm day. Shortly 
after noon there was a rain and hail storm which 
cooled the air considerably. Out in front of us 
and a little to our left some companies were drill- 
ing in a field when we were apprised of the pres- 
ence of the enemy in force by the boom of artil- 
lery and the rattle of musketry. Following this 
all was quiet again, but we felt and knew instinct- 
ively that a battle was impending. 

161 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

On Saturday, April 5th, there were frequent 
exchanges of shots between our pickets and the 
enemy, and one man of our brigade was wounded 
by a bullet in the hand. That evening we 
strengthened our picket guard, and made ready 
for the fray, which we now knew was not far off. 
I had by this time cultivated a close friendship 
with Samuel S. Emery, 1st Lieutenant of Com- 
pany C of my regiment, the 40th Illinois, and I 
shall never forget our conversation on that night 
before the battle. We agreed between us that if 
either was wounded and the other was able to do 
so he would accompany the wounded man to the 
landing and administer an opiate if it became 
necessary. After making sure that we were pro- 
vided with morphine for emergency use, we fell 
into a discussion of personal bravery, in the course 
of which he said: "I don't claim to be an exceed- 
ingly brave man, but I will do my duty. There is 
one thing I do know, and that is I would rather 
die doing my duty than to have it truthfully said 
of me that I was a coward." Although he had the 
heart of a lion, he was not physically strong, and 
he was compelled to resign his commission some 
six months later and retire from the service. The 
last I heard of Lieutenant Emery was that he had 
become a prosperous banker in Portland, Maine. 

Sunday morning dawned bright and clear, and 
gave no hint of the bloody business in hand, but 
we did not have long to wait, as the battle was 

162 



THE BATTLE OF SHILOH 



raging furiously before some of us bad breakfast. 
This reminds me of an incident which happened 
that morning to a couple of soldiers in Company 
F, to which, in the absence of its 1st and 2d lieu- 
tenants, I was assigned to aid its Captain Sherley. 
The previous day these soldiers, Tom Whitting- 
ton and Briscoe Bronson, had gotten hold of a 
bushel of shelled corn, took it to a water-power 
mill on Owl Creek, and, after a lot of hard work 
which had given them employment until late Sat- 
urday evening, finally got it ground and had car- 
ried their grist back to camp, too late to bake any 
of it for supper. On Sunday morning they were 
hustled out to form in line for battle before they 
had anything to eat, and as they were standing 
side by side in the line awaiting the oncoming 
charge of the enemy, Bronson nudged Whitting- 
ton and said, "Tom, we will fight like h for that 
meal, won't we?" And they did! But all to no 
purpose, because the impetuous charge of the 
Rebels that Sunday morning resulted in the cap- 
ture of our camping ground and with it the bushel 
of meal. 

As indicated, I was acting Lieutenant of Com- 
pany F when we went into battle Sunday morn- 
ing, and it was my first experience under fire. 
It was a bright, clear day and we could see the 
enemy, three and four columns deep, marching 
toward us. It was a grand sight and one which 
thrilled me beyond words, but I do not remember 

163 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

that I was frightened. Our regiment was ordered 
out in front to meet and check the advance of the 
enemy, but we did not maintain that position long 
because the opposing commanders attempted 
under cover of a ravine to get a force around in 
our rear to cut us off from our brigade, which was 
being hard pressed in its situation and giving way, 
although contesting every inch. When we at- 
tempted, under orders, to rejoin our brigade, we 
were unable to do so, and turned toward the river, 
into a piece of woods through which we marched 
until we came to an open field where we halted to 
reconnoiter. Here we were joined by a portion 
of a company which had become detached from 
the 72d Ohio regiment. 

While reforming our lines, a Confederate bat- 
tery of four guns came into the field, unlimbered 
and took a position at the head of a ravine which 
we must cross to continue. One gun discharged 
a load of grape shot in our direction, one of the 
balls inflicting a bad wound in the knee joint of 
one of our boys, from the effects of which he died 
later. One volley from our regiment put the bat- 
tery out of commission, horses and men disappear- 
ing as if the earth had swallowed them. At this, 
a Confederate regiment came into the field on 
double quick time to support the battery, and we 
engaged it at long range; but as they were 
equipped only with old, smooth-bore muskets 
whose load was a round ball and three buckshot 

164 



THE BATTLE OF SHILOH 



only a few of their charges reached us and those 
were well spent ; while our rifles were loaded with 
one conical ball with which we could create havoc 
at a distance of 400 to 500 yards. With these odds 
in our favor, we made short work of our oppo- 
nents, who soon retreated, and we marched on, 
passing the battery on our way which we had 
silenced, every man and horse of which had been 
killed. 

We marched toward the river, in the direction 
from which we could hear rapid firing about a half 
mile on ahead of us. Reaching the scene of action, 
we were ordered to go in and hold the enemy in 
check for an hour, or until Colonel Webster could 
establish a line of artillery something like a half 
mile further back toward the river. Here we were 
joined by the 13th Missouri, Colonel Wright 
commanding, more than half of whose regiment 
was composed of Illinois soldiers, and together 
we went into action with a vim, moving up closer 
to the enemy under cover of a clump of trees, from 
which favored position we repulsed time and 
again the advance of a large body of Confederates 
numbering more than 3,000. Finally we were 
given the order to fall back gradually to the line 
of artillery which had by that time been placed 
by Colonel Webster. It was then along about 
three o'clock in the afternoon, and we had been 
fighting practically without cessation since early 
morning. Obviously the day was going against us. 

165 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

After retreating a short distance further, we 
were ordered to lie down. A rebel battery some 
distance away began shelling our position. One 
man a short distance from me raised his head to 
look about when an unexploded shell struck him 
squarely in the face and his head disappeared as 
if by magic. Seeing that the gunners had our 
range perfectly, our officers gave the command 
to retreat. Just as we rose and turned to fall back, 
I experienced a sensation similar to a severe elec- 
tric shock, and "fell back" then and there. An 
unexploded shell had struck my boot, which was 
new, and ruined it; incidentally, it ruined my 
foot also. The shell had struck the ground and 
my foot simultaneously, and, as it ricocheted or 
bounded away, it struck another soldier just below 
the knee, inflicting a wound from which he after- 
ward died. The gunner who fired that shot, a 
twelve pound ball, was entitled to commendation 
for getting two birds with one shot. 

The time that I fell was at about the turn of 
the battle in favor of the Union forces, for the 
reason, I am convinced, that the Confederate 
leader, General Albert Sidney Johnston, was re- 
moved from his command by the grim reaper. He 
had received what was apparently a slight flesh 
wound under the knee, but the bullet in its course 
had severed a small artery, and he stoically sat 
his horse directing the battle, until, from the loss 
of blood, he fell fainting into the arms of one of 

166 



THE BATTLE OF SHILOH 



his aids and soon expired. The chief command 
of the rebel forces thereupon fell upon General 
Beauregard, who was of considerable note as a 
military leader because of the fact that he had led 
the victorious assault upon Fort Sumter and had 
repulsed the Federal forces at the battle of Bull 
Run; but he was now up against the real thing. 
The situation demanded a Johnston, but the mas- 
ter mind was gone, and his successor did not meas- 
ure up to the requirement. 

When Johnston led his army out of Corinth at 
3 o'clock A. M. on April 3d, it was his intention 
to engage Grant's outposts before the day was 
over, but heavy roads, the result of spring rains, 
made it impossible to move his artillery rapidly 
enough to permit this ; in fact, he was thus delayed 
until the 5th. Our army was spread out in a 
slightly concave line reaching from Pittsburg 
Landing to Shiloh church, three miles away to 
the west. As the enemy was about twenty miles 
southwest of us, our formation was toward the 
south. 

The general plan of the Confederates had con- 
templated driving their forces in between us and 
the Landing, but they were frustrated in this by 
the topography of the neighborhood, the land 
being cut up into alternating ridges and ravines 
running back from the river. Their operations 
according to prearranged plans were further em- 
barrassed and prevented by a rather dense growth 

167 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

of timber extending back quite a way from the 
river and which was broken only here and there 
with open fields or clearings, which had the ef- 
fect of breaking the battle up into many detached 
fights, of which the experience of my regiment 
was a good example. In spite of these things 
which operated in our favor, by the middle of that 
eventful Sunday afternoon the spirited charges 
and demoniac fighting of the Rebels had driven 
in our outposts half the distance from Shiloh to 
the Landing, and, in the turning movement, had 
further discouraged our forces by capturing our 
Brigadier-General B. F. Prentiss with his whole 
brigade. 

The fighting continued until sundown, when 
Beauregard ordered his forces to cease the attack, 
thinking that with a night's rest his troops in the 
morning would chase the Yankees into the Ten- 
nessee river, having abandoned the attempt to 
separate us from our base at the Landing. But 
before morning many things happened which 
tended to establish the old saw that the "best laid 
plans of mice and men aft gang aglee." Grant, 
who was at Savannah, six miles down the river, 
when the trouble started, was on the field in the 
afternoon directing our defense. Buell, who had 
been apprised of the attack, had, by forced 
marches over muddy roads, reached us by Sunday 
night with many regiments of fresh troops, which 
were marched to the firing line, where they slept 

168 



THE BATTLE OF SHILOH 



on their arms to be ready to open hostilities early 
Monday morning. 

So it happened that General Beauregard, who 
had already wired advance news of his "great 
victory," was surprised Monday morning to be 
put on the defensive by the enemy who had been 
clearly outfought on the previous day; and, al- 
though the Rebels fought bravely, they had to 
give way before the superior forces which stead- 
ily pushed them back until the Confederates beat 
a precipitate retreat to Corinth. 

Shiloh was a battle royal. The Confederate 
hosts were led by Johnston, Beauregard, Polk, 
Bragg and Hardee. The Union brigades were 
under command of Grant, Sherman, W. H. L. 
Wallace, Prentiss, McClernand and Hurlbut, 
while Lew Wallace was at Crumps Landing six 
miles up the river with another brigade. In ad- 
dition to the loss of Prentiss by capture, our Gen- 
eral W. H. L. Wallace was killed in action on 
Sunday. The total losses were: Union, approx- 
imately 13,000; Confederate, approximately 10,- 
000. Of the participation of Illinois in the bat- 
tle Davidson and Stuve say: 

"Illinois was more largely represented in the 
battle than any single state. On its death-smitten 
field her citizen soldiers traced in characters of blood 
a record of deeds which will be read not only in the 
patriotic homes of the broad prairies, but wherever 
free institutions have a votary or the honor of the 
republic awakes an echo in the human heart. 
169 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

"It was upon the troops of Illinois and those im- 
mediately associated with them in the first day's 
battle, that the enemy dealt his heaviest blows and 
received in turn a stroke which rendered his sub- 
sequent defeat comparatively easy, both sustaining 
a loss hitherto without parallel in the history of the 
war. Though our divisions were driven back as the 
result of surprise and superior numbers, the advance 
of the enemy was finally checked, and when the 
gallant cohorts of Buell came to their rescue, were 
preparing for offensive operations, and largely 
shared in the magnificent cha.ges which subsequently 
bore our blood-stained banners triumphant over the 
field." 

In that Sunday's fighting my regiment bore its 
full share. I was afterward informed by my Cap- 
tain that after I was wounded and removed from 
the field, the regiment fell back to support the ar- 
tillery, and that some of our soldiers served the 
guns after the regular gunners had been picked 
off by the Rebel sharpshooters. The battle raged 
thus until sunset, our embattled troops late in the 
afternoon making a final and a determined stand 
near the Landing, where they were reinforced by 
General Nelson, who arrived with a division of 
Buell's army, which took a position on the right 
of my regiment. In the next day's battle the 40th 
fought with Buell's forces. 

I have always believed that if our lines at Shiloh 
had not been extended so far, and had breastworks 
been thrown up for our defense, we could easily 

170 



THE BATTLE OF SHILOH 



have repelled Johnston's army. However, at that 
time, it was not considered good military form to 
contract lines or erect temporary barricades. Grant 
said, "I spoke to my military engineer and he 
thought it was not necessary," and further, "The 
discipline the soldiers got in that battle was worth 
more to them than breastworks would have been." 
But I noticed that he took counsel of his experi- 
ence and he was never afterward caught in a sim- 
ilar predicament. It is reckoned that one man 
behind a fairly well constructed defense is equal 
to five men assaulting it, and this theory certainly 
has been demonstrated in the present war in 
Europe. 



171 



CHAPTER XIX 
INVALIDED 

When I was rendered hors de combat on the field 
at Shiloh, Lieutenant Emery made good on our 
mutual pledge of the previous night and ac- 
companied me to the Landing, to which I was 
carried by him and some other comrades. Arrived 
there, we found the surgeons so overwhelmed with 
work that I had to wait until night for my turn on 
the operating table. 

While lying thus helpless at the Landing, I saw 
one of the funniest incidents of my career. A 
Union cavalry trooper appeared riding at full 
speed from the direction in which the battle was 
then raging, and running his horse to a point of 
land at a considerable elevation above the river 
spurred him on and made him jump off into the 
swiftly running stream. The horse and rider went 
down until the head of the rider was just out of 
the water. As the horse rose and began to swim 
across the river, it evidently occurred to him that 
the bank he had just left was nearer, so he turned 
around and started back to shore. Those ac- 
quainted with the habits of a horse will know that 
in turning in the water his back is almost per- 

172 



INVALIDED 



pendicular. While in that position the rider 
slipped off and would have been carried down the 
stream had he not caught the horse by the tail 
and been thus towed to land. When back on firm 
ground, the cavalryman mounted the horse, put 
spur to him and rode back like mad in the direction 
of the battle. I have often thought how much that 
rider owed to that horse for saving him from the 
charge of desertion and perhaps making of him 
a gallant soldier. 

I related that story on a number of occasions 
after that, and each time my hearers would look 
askance at each other as if to say, "That's a big 
one"; so my readers will appreciate the satisfac- 
tion I gained in later years in 'securing corroborat- 
ive testimony. Dr. Horace Wardner, one of the 
brigade surgeons operating at the Landing that 
Sunday afternoon, was reading a paper about fif- 
teen years later at a meeting of the Loyal Legion 
in Chicago, which I attended. The title of his 
paper was "Experiences of an Army Surgeon," 
and in it he related the incident just as it is here 
set down. 

At dusk I was taken aboard a hospital boat, when 
the surgeons put the finishing touches upon the 
rather rough amputation the shell had done. Dur- 
ing the night the wounded on that boat were taken 
to Savannah and placed in a brick church there 
which had been hastily converted into a hospital. 
I fared a bit better than most of my wounded com- 

173 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

rades in that I had a cot. The surgeon in charge 
objected to me keeping the cot, but as I was ac- 
companied by Samuel Martin, a comrade from my 
Company, and as we were both well armed, I kept 
the cot and was taken on it to a place near the 
pulpit. On one side of me was a captain of an 
Iowa regiment with one arm amputated above the 
elbow, and on the other side a lieutenant of an 
Ohio battery with his lower leg amputated. 

In about a week, Dr. McCook, of Pittsburg, 
walked into the church one morning and asked if 
there were any men among the wounded there from 
Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Kentucky or West 
Virginia, as he had hospital boats in waiting at the 
landing to take them home. The Lieutenant from 
Ohio, lying next to me, spoke up saying that he 
wanted to go to Cincinnati, and when Dr. McCook 
came over to talk with him, I took advantage of 
the occasion to inform the Doctor that I lived in 
southern Illinois, and would like to be taken as far 
as Paducah, which was on their way. The Iowa 
captain said that he, too, would like to go with 
them as far as Paducah. Dr. McCook explained to 
us that he could not take us unless we got per- 
mission from the surgeon in charge. The surgeon 
very readily gave his consent, and appeared to be 
glad to get rid of us. 

The hospital boat was Heaven as compared to 
what we had recently gone through, it being pro- 
vided with splendid surgeons and nurses, good 

174 



INVALIDED 



food, and everything to make us comfortable. The 
trip down the river was really so pleasant that I 
regretted having to leave the boat when we 
reached Paducah. At this place I again found 
myself in church, being taken to an unfinished 
building that had been fitted up for a hospital. 
Major John N. Niglus, surgeon of the 6th Illinois 
Cavalry, was in charge of this hospital, and a 
splendid surgeon and man he was. It was in his 
institution that I first met Aunt Lizzie Aiken who 
had a national reputation as a nurse and as a splen- 
did character. She died only a few years ago in 
Chicago at a ripe old age, loved by all who knew 
her and especially by the old soldiers who had been 
fortunate enough to fall under her care when they 
were sick and wounded. 

Major Niglus was a gruff man of German de- 
scent and he would allow nothing to interfere with 
his work in restoring the soldiers to health. One 
of the soldiers there named Weaver who had been 
wounded at Shiloh by a rifle ball passing through 
the elbow was in a precarious condition on account 
of septic infection, or blood poisoning, being con- 
tracted through the wound. It was the practice 
of the Chaplain on going to the hospital to inquire 
if there were any in a critical condition so that he 
could administer spiritual comfort to them. The 
Sunday morning after we arrived he came into the 
hospital and was informed that Weaver might not 
live, whereupon the Chaplain went over to his cot 

175 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

and proceeded to cheer him up after this fashion; 
"Young man, you are about to die ! Are you pre- 
pared to meet your God?" After throwing Weaver 
into a fit of nervous excitement, the dominie pious- 
ly raised his eyes to Heaven and said, "Let us 
pray." While he was on his knees praying, Major 
Niglus came to the door and instantly sensing the 
situation, strode up to the Chaplain fairly bristling 
with indignation, grabbed him by the collar and 
yanked him to his feet with an impatient inquiry 
as to why he was around there scaring his patients 
to death. The Major finished that brief interview 
by escorting the Chaplain to the door and lending 
him some rough but effective aid down the stairs. 
Then he strode back to Weaver's cot, but was too 
mad to talk to him and instead came over to me 
and read me a lecture because I did not shoot 
the Chaplain. Cooling down at length, he turned 
to an attendant and said, "Bring Aunt "Lizzie up 
here." In a short time she came in smiling, hum- 
ming a lively tune, and soon had Weaver out of 
the dumps. Weaver ultimately recovered without 
losing the arm although it had an ankilosed or 
stiffened elbow joint. 

After spending three or four weeks in the hos- 
pital at Paducah I was taken to my father's home 
in Franklin County where I remained for about 
four months when I started back to my regiment, 
which was then at Memphis, Tennessee. At Ben- 
ton I met Captain James J. Dallins who had pre- 
176 



INVALIDED 



viously raised a cavalry company which was at- 
tached to the 31st Illinois, the regiment raised by 
John A. Logan and of which he was the first 
colonel. 

Captain Dallins was anxious to raise and com- 
mand a regiment, and inasmuch as he was a demo- 
crat, wanted me to go to Springfield to intercede 
for him with the Governor and Adjutant-General, 
who of course, were republicans. I went to Spring- 
field with him and there secured the co-operation 
of Colonel Jesse Phillips, United States Marshal, 
whom I knew quite well. Together we went to see 
the state officials and finally to Governor Yates, 
who gave him the necessary authority to raise 
a regiment. On the way back from Springfield, I 
stopped at Du Quoin and wrote a number of let- 
ters to friends of mine whom I thought could aid 
the Captain, while he went on to Jonesboro where 
the companies of his regiment were assembled. 
In a comparatively short time he thus raised and 
organized the 81st Illinois Infantry of which he 
was elected Colonel and immediately took his 
regiment into the field. Colonel Dallins was a 
brave man, loyal, a good speaker and would have 
made a place for himself in the army had be not 
been taken oft 7 early as he was. He was killed in 
action at the siege of Vicksburg. 

Following this, I went to Cairo and took passage 
down the river to join my regiment at Memphis. 
As we were passing Hickman, Kentucky, in the 

177 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

night, we were hailed from the shore, and as we 
were "rounding to" to make the landing we were 
fired upon from the shore, at which we backed out 
into the river and steamed away. The shot saved 
us and our cargo, for we might have been captured 
had the enemy given us time to tie up at the 
bank. As it was, we ran down the river a way, 
picked up a company of Cavalry and took them 
back to Hickman to settle with the rebels who had 
fired at us. 

On the way down the river from Hickman, we 
were fired upon again from Greenville, Mississippi, 
but the shots did no damage. After landing safely 
at Memphis, we reported to General W. T. Sher- 
man, in command of our forces at Memphis, the 
warm reception which had been tendered us at 
Greenville. Turning to Colonel Wolcott, com- 
manding the 46th Ohio, General Sherman said, 
"Take your regiment to Greenville and burn the 
town." Colonel Wolcott saluted and left the head- 
quarters. In a short time he sent to General Sher- 
man this laconic report: "I took my regiment to 
Greenville as ordered and burned every house but 
one which we dedicated to God and left standing." 

When I got back to my regiment I found that 
through a general order issued by the Secretary 
of War I had been mustered out of the service a 
few hours previous to my return. Deeply cha- 
grined and disappointed, I called on General Sher- 
man at his headquarters and told him of my mis- 

178 



INVALIDED 



fortune. He observed in a sympathetic way that 
that was a d fool order and not to pay any at- 
tention to it, but to write my resignation and he 
would endorse it with his recommendation for ac- 
ceptance and send it to General Grant at Corinth. 
While waiting for action on my resignation he as- 
signed me to the task of inspecting flour. On 
September 23, 1862, my resignation came through 
"approved," with General Grant's signature at- 
tached, and that ended my military career. 



179 



CHAPTER XX 
BACK TO PRIVATE LIFE 

When I quit the army I lost no time in getting 
back into the study of medicine, matriculating in 
October, 1862, in Rush Medical College in Chi- 
cago. Several things combined to influence me 
to select Rush as the school in which I would con- 
tinue my studies, among them the fact that my 
preceptor was a Rush man; the further fact that 
the St. Louis school had deteriorated after the war 
began, on account of its location in a secession 
state; and because I was influenced by Major 
Niglus, with whom I discussed the matter, in 
favor of Rush College, which happened to be his 
alma mater. 

In October, 1862, Chicago was a thriving town 
of about 135,000 inhabitants, having an area of 
about eighteen square miles as compared with the 
present two hundred square miles. I came on the 
Illinois Central, it having been only recently con- 
structed, and was operating over a single track 
built on trestles from Fifty-third street to the foot 
of Lake street, the shore of the lake then being 
west of the railroad. Since then the shore line 
has been gradually pushed back into the lake, 

180 



BACK TO PRIVATE LIFE 



and the "made land" resulting became the subject 
of extensive litigation, the Illinois Central claim- 
ing that the increment belonged to them, but the 
court of last resort held that the railroad company 
did not acquire title to all the submerged land in 
the lake and limited them to the specific grant 
for their right of way. 

On my arrival in Chicago, on crutches, I sup- 
pose I looked more like a subject for medical aid 
than a candidate for dispensing it, but I soon 
made my arrangements for entering school and 
secured a place to board with a family where Dr. 
Emmans, one of my teachers, boarded. When I 
entered Rush, Dr. Daniel Brainard was president 
and professor of surgery, being recognized as one 
of the foremost surgeons of America. He was an 
exceptionally good teacher, illuminating his sub- 
ject in such a way and making it so plain that the 
student got the impression that he was being 
reminded of something he knew all the time. The 
doctor had a peculiar habit, when amused, of 
throwing back his head, opening his mouth as if 
laughing, and giving every other indication of 
merriment, but never emitting a sound. 

Dr. J. Adams Allen was professor of internal 
medicine and was exceedingly popular with the 
students, who referred to him as Uncle Allen. 
He was in the midst of a lecture when the news 
came that President Lincoln had issued his Eman- 
cipation Proclamation, extending freedom to the 

181 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

four million blacks then in bondage. All the steam 
whistles, bells and noise-making contrivances 
were instantly put in action, until there was such 
a bedlam of noise and confusion that one could 
hardly think, much less be heard. Professor 
Allen waited rather impatiently for a lull in the 
commotion, when he said, "Gentlemen, those negro 
minstrels are making such a racket that I am 
unable to make myself heard," with which he 
bowed to the class and retired. At one of his 
clinics, a mother of apparently humble station in 
life appeared with her little boy, who looked as 
if soap and water would do him more good than 
medicine. The doctor, suspecting the trouble, 
gravely examined the youth's scalp, and, turning 
to the mother, said : "Madam, your boy has Pedic- 
ulus capiti" (head lice), whereupon the fond 
mother cried, distractedly, "Oh! Doctor, will he 
die?" to which the doctor replied, "No; he will 
recover." 

Our faculty also included Dr. R. L. Rea, pro- 
fessor of anatomy ; Dr. D. L. Miller, professor of 
obstetrics ; Dr. Ephraim Ingalls, professor of ma- 
teria medica and toxicology ; Dr. Joseph W. Freer, 
professor of physiology and surgical anatomy; 
and Dr. E. S. Carr, professor of chemistry. As all 
the teaching of those days was by lecture, a man 
had to possess two essential qualifications to get 
a professorship in a medical school, first, a good 
speaker, and, second, a knowledge of his subject. 

182 



BACK TO PRIVATE LIFE 



The winter was an exceedingly busy one for me 
and passed very quickly, and the following spring 
I was graduated along with fifty-five others in 
the class of 1863. So far as I have been able to 
learn, all the boys who were graduated in that 
class made good in their practice of their pro- 
fession. Not more than four members of the class 
still live, and of course all our teachers have long 
since been gathered unto their fathers. Early in 
last winter, during a slight indisposition for which 
I was under treatment in the Presbyterian Hos- 
pital in Chicago, I was surprised and pleased to 
learn that one of the internes at the hospital was 
a grandson of one of my classmates. 

After graduation I went to my home near Ben- 
ton for a short time, returning to Chicago on 
business about the first of June, on which occa- 
sion I met A. C. Fuller, then adjutant-general of 
Illinois, who informed me that he was organizing 
a party of civilian physicians and nurses to go to 
Vicksburg to aid the medical corps of the army 
in looking after the sick and wounded soldiers, 
and stated that he would like to have me join the 
party. Not having anything to detain me, I was 
glad of the opportunity to be of further service, 
and joined his expedition. 

We proceeded to Cairo, where we embarked 
upon the steamer City of Alton, which was await- 
ing us, and went down the river to the vicinity 
of Vicksburg, steaming up the Yazoo river to 

183 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

Maine's Bluff, where an officer came aboard to 
direct the unloading of a part of our cargo con- 
sisting of thirty-six tons of fixed ammunition for 
the big siege guns. On an inquiry from me how 
long the thirty-six tons would last, he informed 
me that it would be shot away in three hours, and 
suggested that if I could go to Milliken's Bend, 
just above Vicksburg, that evening that I would 
have an opportunity to see a splendid display of 
fireworks, as there would be a general bombard- 
ment of the city in the evening. 

Soon after this a small steamer approached the 
landing to which our boat was tied up, and I was 
glad to learn that it was in charge of Captain 
Crane, whom I knew quite well, and who was in 
command of an invalid camp at Milliken's Bend. 
When I told him of my desire to see the bombard- 
ment, he courteously invited me to be his guest 
at the camp that night. The invitation was eagerly 
accepted. On relating my good fortune to Rev. 
Dr. Bishop, rector of St. John's Episcopal Church, 
of Chicago, who was in our party, he said he would 
like to go. so I had the invitation extended to 
include him. The good doctor was of the class 
who affected to believe that slavery was not quite 
as black as it was painted, and that the high stand- 
ard of morals of the southern whites would pre- 
vent an indiscriminate association of the two 
races. He was about to have his eyes opened! 

When we went aboard the captain's boat I was 
184 



BACK TO PRIVATE LIFE 



not long in discovering that he had two distin- 
guished passengers aboard, no less than my old 
leader, Major General U. S. Grant, and his ad- 
jutant, General John A. Rawlins. General Grant 
was characteristically attired in severely plain 
dress, consisting o a worn, faded blouse, a pair 
of trousers that showed hard use, a slouch hat 
with no ornament save a military cord, and with 
no shoulder straps, spurs or other military insig- 
nia of his high rank. The adjutant was simi- 
larly dressed, only he wore spurs. Since I was 
wounded, the Army of the Tennessee, as Grant's 
command came to be known, had cleared the Mis- 
sissippi valley of the enemy, except for the Con- 
federate forces under General Pemberton, which 
still held Vicksburg and through it commanded 
the commerce of the Mississippi. In the month 
before I visited Vicksburg, Grant had, by Napo- 
leonic strategy, cut Vicksburg off from the world, 
and was gradually wearing down the resistance 
of the garrison. 

The invalid camp, under command of Captain 
Crane, was on the Louisiana side of the Missis- 
sippi, and there were in it about four thousand 
negroes of both sexes, all ages and every possible 
shade, from ebony to approximate white, and from 
kinky black wool to the straight, blonde hair of 
the pure Caucasian. Among them was a fair 
mulatto girl about 17 years old, very pretty, with 
a baby in her arms less than a year old that showed 

185 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

practically no indication of negro parentage. 
With Dr. Bishop present, I began to question her 
in this fashion: "Are you married?" Ans. "No, 
suh." "Whose baby is that?" Ans. "Dat's mine." 
"Who is the father of it?" Ans. "Marse W ." 
"Who is he?" Ans. "He am de son of de 'Pis- 
copal preacher in ." At this Dr. Bishop threw 

up his hands, exclaiming: "I couldn't have be- 
lieved it; the half has never yet been told!" 

Six mortar boats were moored near the shore 
close to Captain Crane's headquarters. At sunset 
there was a reverberating crash as the first shell 
was sent from one of these mortars on the long 
journey to the beleaguered city. In a few sec- 
onds another was fired, then another, and another, 
until there were six huge shells in the air at one 
and the same time, speeding on their mission of 
death and destruction. After the last of these 
had exploded in the distant city, a brisk cannon- 
ade began in the division of General Sherman, 
forming the extreme right of Grant's army and 
occupying a position just across the river from 
where we were watching. The division just be- 
yond Sherman took up the song of death, and in 
this way it followed the circle of steel which 
Grant had thrown around the besieged town, until 
all the Union artillery was in action. Then it 
was "load and fire at will" until about half past 
nine. It was a grand and an awful sight, and, 
looking back over the fifty and five years which 

186 



BACK TO PRIVATE LIFE 



intervene, I can hardly conceive that it was nec- 
essary to expend all that blood and treasure to 
convince our brethren of the South that it wasn't 
right for one man to own and enslave another. 
Mankind was greatly benefited through every war 
which has been fought. 

The next morning Captain Crane took us back 
to the landing where our boat was tied up, and 
from there I made a trip to the front to visit some 
of my former comrades in arms. In a small tent 
down in a ravine I found Dr. I. M. Neeley, in 
whose office I had studied in Benton, and who 
was now assistant surgeon of the Eighty-first 
Illinois. The doctor was very ill and would not 
have lived long in the surroundings in which I 
found him ; and so I made it my business to go to 
General Logan's headquarters and tell him of Dr. 
Neeley's condition. His comment was that "the 
Secretary of War had issued a fool order that 
no commissioned officer should be furloughed 
under any circumstances, but (pointing to an am- 
bulance) if you can induce the driver to hook 
up his mules to that you can take Neeley with 
you to the boat and back home." It was not diffi- 
cult to induce the driver to help us, and I soon 
had the doctor on the boat and on the way back 
home. That was my last near view of war. I am 
not anxious for another, but I would not shirk 
my duty if I thought I could be of service. It 
was this feeling that led me to offer my services 

187 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

to my country when we entered the European 
war. 

On the way up the river an amusing incident 
occurred in which my new found friend and asso- 
ciate, Rev. Dr. Bishop, figured. He had been 
preaching one day down below to some wounded 
soldiers, and on coming to the upper deck he 
found a soldier lying on a cot, face down, for 
the reason that he had been badly injured in the 
back. The doctor said to him, "My man, did you 
hear my sermon to the boys down below?" The 
soldier, convalescing and petulant, replied, "I 
heard some d n fool blabbing down there, but 
I couldn't understand what it was all about." 
Rather taken aback, the doctor kindly inquired if 
he could do anything for the soldier, and learned 
that he was hungry and wanted something to eat. 
The good doctor got him a generous portion of 
food and himself fed it to him, after which the 
soldier repented, apparently, for his former lack 
of courtesy and sheepishly said to Dr. Bishop, 
"Now you can go ahead and preach to me as long 
as you desire." The doctor told me that out of 
that incident he had learned the valuable lesson 
never to attempt to preach to a man who has an 
empty belly. 



188 



CHAPTER XXI 
IN THE MEDICAL PROFESSION 

When I returned from my trip down the Missis- 
sippi I engaged in the practice of medicine and 
surgery in Du Quoin, on the main line of the Illi- 
nois Central, twenty miles west of Benton, locat- 
ing there in 1863 and forming a partnership with 
Doctor Thomas H. Burgess, who had at that time 
been engaged in practice there for many years. I 
was exceedingly fortunate in making this arrange- 
ment as Doctor Burgess was then ready to retire, 
and when he quit the profession a few months 
later, I acquired an established practice. The Doc- 
tor was a man of no ordinary attainments and a 
very good physician. I shall never forget the 
kindly manner in which he took me under his 
wing, so to speak, and the splendid start which he 
gave me in my profession by introducing me to his 
patients and friends and in commending me to 
them very highly. Later in life he removed to 
Albuquerque, New Mexico, where he died at a ripe 
old age, and where his descendants are living at 
the present. 

Two years after I had established myself in 
practice at Du Quoin, at the close of the Civil War, 

189 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

I took into partnership with me Dr. Charles Carl, 
a graduate of a medical college in New York City, 
who had practiced in Tamaroa, eight miles north 
of Du Quoin, for a number of years prior to the 
war, in which he enlisted and served as the Sur- 
geon of the 41st Illinois Infantry. Dr. Carl was 
a man of splendid intellect, well educated, and a 
good physician, but very temperamental and some- 
what erratic. We practiced together for only a 
year when we dissolved our partnership on ac- 
count of his failing health, and he moved to 
Bloomington, Illinois, where he developed a can- 
cer of the tongue, which necessitated the removal 
of that organ and ultimately caused his death. 
Dr. Carl died as he had lived, a brave and con- 
scientious man. 

In 1866 I entered into my next and last profes- 
sional partnership with Dr. Warren J. Burgess, a 
brother of Dr. Tom Burgess, who had seen army 
service as surgeon of the 17th Kentucky Infantry, 
with which he served throughout the war. My 
business and professional relations with him in 
our partnership covering six years were very 
pleasant and satisfactory; and during that asso- 
ciation we formed a close friendship which lasted 
as long as he lived. He had no children and spent 
his declining years in the Soldiers' and Sailors' 
Home at Quincy, Illinois, where he died a few 
years ago. 

My practice in Du Quoin was successful from 
190 



IN THE MEDICAL PROFESSION 

the start. In my first week's business, I had two 
cases of fracture to treat, and as I was singularly 
successful in reducing them, I at once acquired 
an enviable local reputation as a surgeon. It was 
not long before I was appointed surgeon for a 
mining company which operated a coal mine at 
St. John, a little town on the Illinois Central, a 
mile north of Du Quoin. This property was ac- 
quired a few years later by William P. Halliday, 
of Cairo, a man who was extensively engaged in 
commerce on the Ohio and Mississippi rivers, and 
who had through industry, perseverance and 
splendid business judgment, gradually worked his 
way up from a humble position on a river boat 
until he became captain of a boat and later owner 
of a fleet which he employed in carrying goods, 
wares and merchandise to different stores and 
depots which he had established along the two 
rivers. The title of "captain" which he acquired 
in his river life, stuck to him throughout his re- 
maining career. Captain Halliday, in my opinion, 
is entitled to the distinction of having done more 
to develop industrial and commercial activities in 
southern Illinois than any other one man. He 
left behind him many monuments to mark his 
achievements, among which I may mention his 
famous old hostelry, the Halliday House in Cairo, 
and Hallidayboro, a prosperous mining town on 
the Illinois Central about twelve miles south of 
Du Quoin. 

191 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

Captain Halliday acquired the mines at St. John 
mainly for the purpose of supplying his river fleet 
and his depots with coal. In the course of time 
the mine on the railroad was worked out and 
abandoned, and a new one was opened on Reese's 
Creek, about a mile east of the old location. This 
mine was the famous old Paradise mine, whose 
excellent product acquired an enviable reputation 
in the general markets. The old tip house was 
still maintained on the main line of the railroad 
and a little narrow gauge railroad was constructed 
to the mouth of the new mine over which diminu- 
tive locomotives hauled the little coal cars just 
as they were taken from the mine. 

The coal deposits in southern Illinois are in 
strata or veins of varying thickness, and the usual 
method of mining is to sink a vertical shaft or 
opening from the surface of the ground to the 
principal vein, approximately six feet thick, en- 
countered at depths varying from fifty to five 
hundred feet below the surface. The Paradise 
mine was different from all others with which I 
was familiar, for the reason that it came to the 
surface on a gentle incline, cropping out on the 
east bank of Reese's Creek. From here it ex- 
tended back into Paradise prairie ; hence the name. 

After acquiring the mine at St. John, Captain 
Halliday conceived the idea that there was oil in 
the vicinity, and had some holes drilled west of 
the old abandoned mine property to see if he could 

192 



IN THE MEDICAL PROFESSION 

locate it. He did not strike oil, but at a depth 
of several hundred feet opened some splendid salt 
wells which enabled him to add a large salt pro- 
ducing plant to his mining activities. These, 
together with the coke ovens and the company 
store, combined to make St. John the most in- 
dustrious hamlet in the state; but from which, 
like the Deserted Village of Goldsmith, the glo- 
ries have long since departed, and it is only a 
memory in the minds of those who saw it grow 
up, blossom and decay. In their palmy days, the 
St. John's industries were under the management 
of Marion Wright, a bachelor brother-in-law of 
Captain Halliday, who will be affectionately re- 
membered by a veritable host of friends, who came 
to know and love him as a most genial and whole- 
souled gentleman. Marion was "one of the boys." 
My connection with the mine at St. John led me 
into a practice which was very congenial to me, 
and served to give me a proficiency in emergency 
surgery which determined my life work for me. 
For those of my readers who do not understand 
coal mining, let me illustrate as follows : Picture 
in your mind a pie with its upper and lower 
crusts. Allowing that the material inside the pie, 
or its "filling," represents the seam or vein of coal 
lying underground, the upper crust would repre- 
sent a covering of slate called the roof which lays 
on top the vein of coal, while the lower crust 
would represent a layer of clay on which the coal 

193 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

rests. The usual method of mining is to dig out 
a space on the under side of the vein of coal ; then 
to run drill holes about two inches in diameter 
and in a line nearly parallel with the vein to a 
depth of four or five feet back from the "face" of 
the coal on which the miner is working. Charges 
of powder are inserted in these drill holes, the 
opening is closed, and the charge is "fired" by 
means of a time fuse, which allows the men to get 
safely away, and in this way the coal is "shot 
down" in fragments, of sizes convenient for load- 
ing into the little cars and sending to the mouth 
of the mines. Very often in shooting the coal, 
the slate roof would be cracked and broken to such 
an extent that when the miners returned after the 
shot to clear away the coal which had been shot 
down and to repeat the operation of mining and 
blasting, the loosened slate would fall in large 
quantities of great weight, injuring the miners in 
varying degrees who were unfortunate enough to 
be under the slate when it fell. Consequently, I 
had many cases of injuries to treat among the 
miners. 

It was in that practice that I learned the anti- 
septic value of ordinary whiskey. It was in a case 
where a patient had received an ugly scalp wound 
which I found pretty well filled with coal dust and 
dirt, offering a congenial field for the staphylococ- 
cus or pus germ. I cleansed the wound as well as I 
could, cut away the hair, and sutured the wound 

194 



IN THE MEDICAL PROFESSION 

with silk, that being the only suture material we 
had then aside from silver wire. Carbolic acid 
had just recently been discovered, and put into 
use as an antiseptic, but it happened that there 
was none immediately at hand, and seeing a bottle 
of whiskey standing near, I poured some of it on 
the wound and moistened the dressing with it. 
The condition in which I found the wound, and 
the lack of a strong antiseptic to cleanse it, indi- 
cated the formation of pus; and I was agreeably 
surprised next day to find there had been no sup- 
puration whatever. My patient informed me he 
had watched me pour on the whiskey, and think- 
ing that a part of the treatment, had kept the 
dressing moistened with repeated applications of 
the liquor. In five days the wound was healed, 
and I have always attributed the kindly healing 
to the antiseptic properties of the alcohol in the 
whiskey, a therapeutic fact which I have verified 
on many occasions in an extensive practice. I 
have learned a great many valuable things in medi- 
cine and surgery which are not taught in the 
books. 

This leads me to observe that there were some 
men in the profession who had neither theoretical 
nor practical knowledge. I met one of these in 
the treatment of a patient who was suffering from 
a very severe attack of bronchitis. It was such an 
aggravated case that I did not feel justified in 
holding out any hope to his family; so when I 

195 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

informed them of the gravity of the case, they 
inquired if I would object to calling another doc- 
tor in consultation. On my assurance that I 
would welcome the co-operation, they called in 
a local physician, who was a man of splendid per- 
sonal appearance and chuck full of assurance, but 
who was woefully shy on education and experi- 
ence. After he had looked the patient over, we 
repaired to a place beyond the hearing of the 
family to take up a consideration of the case, when 
he inquired of me what I was treating the patient 
for. When I told him bronchitis, he looked at me 
with a look of mingled pity and scorn and ex- 
claimed : "Why, Doctor, this is a clear cut case of 
Tizic (meaning Phthisis)." There being absolutely 
no grounds for a diagnosis of Phthisis, I inquired 
of him what form of "Tizic" he would pronounce 
it, and he responded without hesitation, "an in- 
flammation of the Tizus gland!" It appearing to 
me that nothing would save the patient, and here 
was as near to it as could be found, I left the case 
with the "Tizic" specialist. The patient died that 
night. This doctor reminded me of the other one 
who always tried to induce a case of "fits" in his 
patients, because, as he explained, he was "hell on 
fits." 

While I was in Du Quoin, another practitioner 
of that variety dropped into town and hung out 
his shingle. He drove a diminutive horse hitched 
to a large buggy, and one hot afternoon drove out 

196 



IN THE MEDICAL PROFESSION 

into the country to see a patient. When he ar- 
rived at his destination, the pony laid down and 
died, clearly from overheating. When the doctor 
had walked back to town, he came to my office to 
discuss his misfortunes, stating it as his belief 
that his horse had been poisoned. Seeing an op- 
portunity for a little fun, I suggested that he go 
back and make a post mortem examination to look 
for traces of poison. While he was trudging back 
into the country, I took another physician, Doctor 
Leman, and our druggist, Allen C. Brookings, into 
my confidence, and between us it was arranged that 
I should send the new doctor to Brookings, who 
would tell him that only recently Doctor Leman 
had bought a quantity of gum trage (the trade 
name for Gum Tragacanth, a harmless commercial 
gum) and had asked Brookings to say nothing 
about it. In a few hours, the new doctor returned 
from his autopsy, covered with perspiration, and 
reported that he had found a suspicious white sub- 
stance in the stomach of his dead horse. I agreed 
with him that it might be a case of poisoning, and 
inquired of him if he had any reason to suspect 
that Doctor Leman was jealous of his competition, 
and had taken this foul means to set him afoot, 
thereby hampering his further activities. Quickly 
swallowing the bait, he said that it had occurred to 
him, but he didn't know how he would go about 
it to ascertain the guilt of Doctor Leman, where- 
upon I suggested to him that Leman purchased 

197 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

most of his drugs from Al Brookings. The new 
doctor went immediately to Brookings' drug store 
and inquired if Doctor Leman had purchased any 
poison lately. After exacting a promise that his 
name would not be used, Brookings told him con- 
fidentially that Doctor Leman had recently pur- 
chased a large quantity of gum trage. Evidently 
not being too well posted on materia medica, the 
new doctor was soon circulating stories to the 
effect that he had good reasons to believe that Doc- 
tor Leman had poisoned his horse with "gum 
tragic." Doctor Leman simulated great indigna- 
tion when the reports reached his ears, and be- 
sides threatening physical chastisement, had word 
taken back to the new doctor that he had engaged 
an attorney to prosecute him for slander. While 
those in on the joke were enjoying the fun, the 
new doctor left town between two days, and he 
was never heard of thereafter. 

It may occur to my readers, as has been sug- 
gested to me, that the joke perpetrated on the 
pseudo practitioner might be considered by some 
persons as being below the dignity of a "regular" 
doctor. Perhaps so ; but not to my way of think- 
ing. It has been truly said that 

"A little nonsense now and then 
Is relished by the wisest men." 

Although laying no claim to great wisdom, it 
has been my rule of life to get all the joy and sun- 

198 



IN THE MEDICAL PROFESSION 

shine possible out of existence. Sorrow and 
shadows come unbidden and whether we will it 
or no; so I learned long ago not to brood or re- 
pine over things beyond my power to change, 
believing, with my Presbyterian forebears, that 
whatever is to be will be. Benjamin Franklin, 
when asked the secret of his vigorous old age, re- 
plied, "Be cheerful and keep your bowels open." 
Those men, professional or otherwise, who take 
themselves too seriously, are not usually of an 
extended longevity. I am serenely happy and 
contented that at eighty years of age, I am in pos- 
session of all my faculties; and this I credit to 
fairly good habits and a disposition to be con- 
tented with my lot. 



CHAPTER XXII 
A GREAT TASK FINISHED 

Many and pleasant are the fond recollections 
still cherished of the score of years which I spent 
in the practice of medicine in DuQuoin. It was 
there that I acquired a practical knowledge of 
medicine and surgery which constituted my life 
work, and in the practice of which I was actively 
engaged for more than half a century. 

It was there on December 27, 1864, that I was 
married to Miss Helen Priscilla Ward, a daughter 
of Alva Ward, a branch of the New England 
family of that name which had found its way 
west by easy stages, settling first in Cayuga 
County, New York, moving from thence to Cler- 
mont County, Ohio, and eventually to DuQuoin 
at about the time the Illinois Central was built; 
in fact, Guy, George and John Ward, brothers of 
my wife, helped build the first house erected in 
Duquoin, which was built approximately on the 
site of the present residence of Lucius Smith, the 
banker. My wife's mother was a cousin of Gen- 
eral Don Carlos Buell, whose timely appearance 
with his army at Shiloh saved Grant's army from 
almost certain annihilation ; a brother, Guy Carl- 

200 



A GREAT TASK FINISHED 



ton Ward, was a captain in the 12th Illinois In- 
fantry; another brother, George, served in the 
81st Illinois, the regiment organized and com- 
manded by my friend, Colonel James Dallins; 
another brother, John B., became a prominent 
educator of southern Illinois. There is none 
left now of that generation, but there are many 
of the succeeding generation and of the genera- 
tion following that are living now in Chicago. My 
wife Helen lived but a few years, leaving at her 
death an infant son, my only child, Guy Marshall 
McLean, who is now an officer in the medical 
corps of the U. S. Army. 

The battle of Shiloh, in which I was wounded, 
was a crucial contest, not only as affecting the 
career of General Grant but also in the campaign 
for possession of the Mississippi valley and con- 
trol of the Mississippi river with its then ex- 
tensive navigation and commerce. From Shiloh, 
the Confederates retreated to their entrenchments 
at Corinth, where they were defeated some weeks 
later. The year was further made memorable by 
the exploits of Admiral Farragut, who ran by 
the forts at the mouth of the Mississippi, cap- 
tured New Orleans and thereby got control of the 
Mississippi up to Vicksburg. By the fall of 1862, 
the Confederates held only two places in the Mis- 
sissippi valley Vicksburg and Chattanooga. 

The prosecution of the war against secession 
had developed so favorably that Lincoln decided 

201 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

to make a bold stroke to force the rebel states 
into submission to Federal authority. On Sep- 
tember 22, 1862, he issued his immortal Emanci- 
pation Proclamation in which it was announced, 
"That on the first day of January, in the year of 
our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty- 
three, all persons held as slaves within any State, 
or designated part of a State, the people whereof 
shall then be in rebellion against the United 
States, shall be then, thenceforward and forever 
free." On the following New Year's Day, in ac- 
cordance with his proclamation, the South still 
being in rebellion, he issued the promised edict 
which struck the chains of slavery from four mil- 
lion human beings. The closing paragraph of his 
New Year's proclamation was as follows : 

"And upon this act, sincerely believed to be an 
act of justice, warranted by the constitution upon 
military necessity, I invoke the considerate 
judgment of mankind and the gracious favor of 
Almighty God." 

Thus at one stroke the Great Emancipator re- 
moved the blot of Slavery from the escutcheon 
of Liberty and thereby became immortalized in 
the "considerate judgment of mankind" which he 
confidently invoked upon his act. 

At the time the Emancipation Proclamation 
was signed, General Grant's army was settling 
down to the siege of Vicksburg, which was 
brought to a successful close on July 4, 1863, 

202 



A GREAT TASK FINISHED 



when it was surrendered to Grant, thus freeing 
the Mississippi; and on the same day in the 
eastern theater of war, Lee's attempted invasion 
of the North was repulsed at Gettysburg, Penn- 
sylvania, with frightful losses, and he was driven 
back into Virginia. Late in 1863, the remaining 
Confederates were driven out of Tennessee. From 
that time on there was no question as to the ulti- 
mate outcome of the titanic struggle, the only 
question being the question of time. 

In March, 1864, with his task successfully 
finished in the West, the conspicuous services of 
my old leader, General Grant, were recognized in 
his appointment as Lieutenant General of the 
United States Army, a rank theretofore held only 
by the great generals, George Washington and 
Winfield Scott. Grant now moved his general 
headquarters to the Army of the Potomac, then 
in the field in Virginia operating against the 
Confederate army under General Robert E. Lee, 
without a peer in the Rebel army since the death 
of that Christian gentleman and great general, 
Thomas J. (Stonewall) Jackson, who was killed 
at the battle of Chancellorsville, where the Union 
forces under Hooker received the worst defeat of 
the Civil War. 

Up to the time Grant took supreme command 
of the Union Army no general had been developed 
among our forces who was regarded as a match 
in military genius for General Lee, commanding 

203 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

the Confederate Army in Virginia. Now the 
world was to see a battle of giants. Grant, with- 
out delay, sent the veterans of the Army of the 
Potomac against Lee's seasoned troops in three 
pitched battles. The havoc inflicted upon our 
army in those engagements at the Wilderness, 
Spottsylvania and Cold Harbor checked the ad- 
vance of Grant and compelled him to change his 
tactics from frontal attacks to flanking move- 
ments. Lee, with about half as many men as 
Grant, was putting up a masterful defense, and 
when the winter set in Lee was intrenched at 
Petersburg, which he held until the following 
spring. 

In 1864, an opportunity was given the people 
to approve or disapprove of Lincoln's administra- 
tion, for the Republicans in their national con- 
vention of that year nominated Lincoln for re- 
election on a platform endorsing his administra- 
tion and all his official acts and promising "to 
prosecute the war with the utmost possible vigor, 
to the complete suppression of the rebellion." 
The Democrats nominated as their candidate 
General George B. McClellan, a Union general 
who had failed, as the leader of the Army of the 
Potomac, to disperse the rebel forces threatening 
Washington. The signal success of Grant had 
further embittered him so that he was easily per- 
suaded to accept the Democratic nomination on 
a platform which declared the war a failure and 

204 



A GREAT TASK FINISHED 



recommended a "convention of the states, or other 
possible means, to the end that, at the earliest 
practical moment, peace may be restored." 

The election in November resulted in a sweep- 
ing victory for Lincoln, who was inaugurated into 
his second term as President on March 4, 1865. 
On that occasion, Lincoln rose to a height of sub- 
lime eloquence and pathos equal to anything in 
the history of the world. In closing his brief ad- 
dress he said: 

"Fondly do we hope fervently do we pray that 
this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. 
Yet, if God wills that it continue until all the wealth 
piled by the bondsman's two hundred and fifty years 
of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop 
of blood drawn with the lash shall be paid by an- 
other drawn with the sword, as was said three thou- 
sand years ago, so still it must be said, 'The judg- 
ments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether/ 

"With malice toward none; with charity for all; 
with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the 
right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to 
bind up the nation's wounds, to care for him who 
shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and 
his orphan to do all which may achieve and cherish 
a just and lasting peace among ourselves, and with 
all nations." 

Heartened by the triumph of the reelection of 
Lincoln and inspired by his second inaugural, 
Grant set himself resolutely to the task of break- 
ing the resistance of Lee, whose army had been 
worn down to less than 50,000. On April 1, Gen- 

205 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

eral Phil Sheridan won an important engagement 
at Five Forks, making Lee's position at Peters- 
burg untenable and compelling him to abandon 
the defense of Richmond and to retreat to the 
west. He was overtaken a week later at Ap- 
pomattox Court House, where he surrendered 
what remained of his once splendid army, num- 
bering a little less than 30,000. The Clan McLean 
was honored with a part in that historic event 
in the fact that Grant and Lee met, agreed on the 
terms of surrender, and signed the written agree- 
ment in the home of Wilmer McLean on April 
9, 1865. 

Then followed a period of public rejoicing 
which reached into every home and hamlet, North 
and South, all over the land, but which was 
brought to an abrupt termination a few days later 
through the tragic removal of the great central 
figure of the war and of the age. On the night 
of April 14th, President Lincoln sat with his fam- 
ily and some personal friends in a box at Ford's 
Theater in Washington witnessing the produc- 
tion of a comedy entitled Our American Cousin. 
It was the first real relaxation which had been 
vouchsafed the great heart and mind for four 
long weary years. There he sat, the savior of a 
people, the savior of a nation, beloved throughout 
the country he had saved, when he was shot 
through the head by John Wilkes Booth, a men- 
tally defective brother of Edwin Booth, the 

206 



A GREAT TASK FINISHED 



great tragedian. The President was carried 
across the street to a house where he passed peace- 
fully away the next morning, surrounded by his 
family and some of his cabinet officers. When 
the surgeon announced the end, War Secretary 
Stanton broke the stillness and suspense with his 
famous reverent exclamation, "Now he belongs 
to the ages." 

The assassination of President Lincoln was 
part of a gigantic plot to overthrow the Govern- 
ment by murdering the President and the prom- 
iment government officials. Secretary Seward, 
in bed with illness, was attacked and would have 
been killed had not his attendants overpowered 
the assassin. The other features of the hare- 
brained scheme failed for one reason or another. 
Booth, in making his escape from the theater, 
jumped from the President's box to the stage, 
but the American flag draped in front of the box 
caught the spur of the assassin and threw him 
heavily to the stage, breaking his leg, thus mutely 
avenging the dastardly deed. The injury so im- 
peded the movements of Booth that he was over- 
taken in his flight and found hiding in a barn in 
Carolina County, Virginia, Refusing to sur- 
render, the barn was set fire, and as he was about 
to rush out, rifle in hand, to give battle, he was 
shot down by Sergeant Boston Corbett. The 
other principals in the conspiracy were appre- 
hended, tried and executed. 

207 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

Lincoln's body was taken to the White House, 
where it lay in the spacious East Room until 
April 19th, when the public funeral ceremonies 
were held and the body was then taken to the 
Capitol of the nation he had served and saved, 
where it lay in state while thousands and thou- 
sands of sorrowing Americans filed mournfully 
past in token of the world's bereavement. On 
April 21st, a funeral train was started out of 
Washington to take his body back to Springfield, 
following substantially the route over which he 
had come in 1861 to be inaugurated president. 
What a contrast between the two occasions and 
what strong proof, taken together, they constitut- 
ed that the hand of Providence guided our des- 
tiny! The journey back to Springfield consumed 
twelve days, during which the nation was in 
mourning. 

That those who read my story may know how 
Lincoln was revered by the generation in which 
he lived, I quote the following description of his 
funeral cortege, taken from the biography writ- 
ten by his secretary, John G. Nicolay : 

"On April 21, accompanied by a guard of honor, 
and in a train decked with somber trappings, the jour- 
ney was begun. At Baltimore, through which, four 
years before, it was a question whether the President- 
elect could pass with safety to his life, the coffin was 
taken with reverent care to the great dome of the 
Exchange, where, surrounded with evergreens and 
lilies, it lay for several hours, the people passing by 
208 



A GREAT TASK FINISHED 



in mournful throngs. The same demonstration was 
repeated, gaining continually in intensity of feeling 
and solemn splendor of display, in every city through 
which the procession passed. The reception in New 
York was worthy alike of the great city and of the 
memory of the man they honored. The body lay in 
state in the City Hall, and a half million people 
passed in deep silence before it. Here General Scott 
came, pale and feeble, but resolute, to pay his tribute 
of respect to his departed friend and commander. 

"The train went up the Hudson River by night, and 
at every town and village on the way vast waiting 
crowds were revealed by the fitful glare of torches, 
and dirges and hymns were sung. As the train passed 
into Ohio, the crowds increased in density, and the 
public grief seemed intensified at every step west- 
ward. The people of the great central basin were 
claiming their own. The day spent at Cleveland was 
unexampled in the depth of emotion it brought to 
life. Some of the guard of honor said that it was at 
this point they began to appreciate the place which 
Lincoln was to hold in history." 

The funeral train reached Springfield, Illinois, 
on May 3, and the body lay in state in the Capi- 
tol for a day, where it was viewed by thousands of 
his own people. On the morning of May 4, the 
mortal remains of Abraham Lincoln were tenderly 
laid to rest in Oak Ridge Cemetery in Spring- 
field, where his sacred dust reposes to hallow the 
soil of the great State which gave him to the na- 
tion, to humanity and to the ages. 



209 



CHAPTER XXIII 
BREAKING OLD TIES 

The great Civil War originated over the ques- 
tion of which was supreme, a state government 
or our National Government; but the dissolution 
of the Union was sought by the South because 
she didn't want her unholy institution of slavery 
interfered with; so slavery, therefore, was the 
basic cause of the war. After the South had 
forced the war upon us, the farseeing statesman- 
ship of Lincoln saw the opportunity to remove 
forever the bone of contention; hence the Eman- 
cipation Proclamation. 

Obviously, war is a terrible thing. Our Union 
General, W. T. Sherman, aptly described it when 
he said, "War is hell." But there are worse things 
than war, and one of these was human slavery, so 
civilization was advanced through the war which 
freed the slaves. History will show that every 
war which has been fought has contributed to 
the advancement of civilization ; and the purposes 
of the Almighty may be seen clearly running 
through the succession of bloody conflicts in 
which the human family has engaged since the 
dawn of history. 

210 



BREAKING OLD TIES 



I am glad that I had a part in the glorious 
achievement of removing the stain of slavery 
from our national escutcheon, although it re- 
quired the sacrifice of my blood and the blood of 
my comrades and antagonists to wash away the 
stain. Under the softening and chastening in- 
fluence of the fleeting years which have passed 
since that horrible nightmare, I look back upon 
it without resentment and without bitterness to- 
wards those who opposed us. They fought 
against advancing civilization, and were fore- 
doomed to failure. And now, for our reunited na- 
tion, my son and their sons are in the uniform of 
our common country, fighting for the preserva- 
tion and extension of the eternal principles on 
which our Republic is founded. 

Besides establishing the perpetuity of the 
Union and abolishing slavery, the world was 
treated to the wonderful example of how, in a 
Republic of free men, a great army could be 
quietly disbanded when the occasion for it had 
passed. With a grand review in Washington in 
which for two days the Union hosts followed 
each other with the measured tread of veterans 
past the reviewing stand, these men passed from 
military to civil life, dissipating the fear that 
"the man on horseback" would establish a per- 
manent military autocracy to rule the country. 
In the next national campaign, my old command- 
er, General Grant, was nominated in Chicago by 

211 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

the Republicans as their candidate for President, 
and triumphantly elected. 

Having been left at the death of my good wife 
Helen with an infant son who needed the care 
and attention that only a woman can give, I con- 
tracted my second marriage with Eugenie Paris 
at Bloomington, on September 21, 1871. She was 
not only all that a mother could be to my son, 
but proved a constant source of inspiration to 
me throughout the more than two score years of 
happy wedded life through which I was blessed 
and encouraged with her delightful companion- 
ship. She was a woman of sunny disposition, 
high ideals and many accomplishments. I never 
knew her to turn a deaf ear to a plea for aid or 
assistance; and she would deny herself in order 
to give to her friends. 

A couple of weeks after my marriage, the great 
fire occurred in Chicago which destroyed two 
hundred million dollars worth of property. It 
was thought at the time that the development of 
the town was irreparably injured, but it trans- 
pired that the fire was a blessing in disguise, be- 
cause in its wake came new and better structures. 
A new Chicago arose like the phoenix from its 
ashes. At the time of the fire the population of 
the city was approximately three hundred thou- 
sand ; but the city was builded so rapidly after the 
fire that the population exceeded a half million 
when I came to Pullman. 

212 



BREAKING OLD TIES 



In the interim I continued my practice in Du 
Quoin, and it was filled with interesting ex- 
periences. Among the surgical cases which I 
handled were some injuries incurred in the 
bloody vendetta which raged in old Williamson 
County just after the Civil War. The feuds 
originated in political disputes over questions 
arising out of the Civil War, there being a large 
proportion of southern sympathizers throughout 
our portion of the state. Many men were killed, 
maimed and wounded in the course of that local 
warfare, and it fell to my lot to treat at least four 
victims who had been shot from ambush. My 
reader can imagine that it was anything but pleas- 
ant or reassuring to ride through a country where 
men were engaged in the rather common practice 
of shooting at each other from ambush. I 
learned afterward that I had had a narrow escape 
through being mistaken for one of the hunted. 
Fortunately for me, the color of my horse put a 
doubt as to my identity in the mind of the gentle- 
man who was drawing a bead on me, and the closer 
investigation it caused him to make convinced 
him that he had nearly shot the wrong man. This 
outlawry continued with unabated vigor for sev- 
eral years and until Governor Beveridge inter- 
posed to put an effectual end to it. It was finally 
broken up by two of the leading attorneys of Wil- 
liamson County, W. "Josh" Allen and Judge 
Hartwell, joining in the prosecution of the ban- 

213 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

dits. The young son of Judge Hartwell is now 
the Circuit Judge in that Judicial District. 

During my practice in Du Quoin I had many 
interesting surgical cases which I should like to 
describe, but lack of space will not permit. I 
will take the time, however, to tell about the case 
of a young man whose arm was drawn into the 
cogwheels or gears of a lathe, stripping the flesh 
from the bones. The case indicated an amputa- 
tion at the shoulder, and this was advised by the 
two physicians who were first called. The boy 
objected, however, to the amputation of his arm, 
and wanted me to be called. Seeing that an am- 
putation could be performed a few days later if 
necessary, I thought I would humor the young 
man by experimenting to see if the arm could be 
saved. I soon became convinced that there was 
a slight chance, and worked to that end. I be- 
came somewhat discouraged, though, in the course 
of the treatment to find that the wound was sup- 
purating and that through exposure flies had been 
allowed to lay their eggs in the pus, with the 
result that the wound was soon virtually alive 
with maggots. On making a close observation 
of the wound I discovered that instead of having 
a bad effect the little scavengers were performing 
a friendly office, clearing the wound of the dead 
and threatening tissue, having practically 
cleansed the wound. Washing them out with 
turpentine and dressing the wound, it was soon 

214 



BREAKING OLD TIES 



in the process of healing. The arm was saved 
to the young man but it was a long time before 
feeling was fully restored in the injured member. 

Along with my profession I took an interest in 
local politics, being twice selected by my fellow 
citizens to fill the office of mayor. While acting 
in that capacity, the town marshal came to me 
one day with a report that he was having trouble 
with a couple of miners between whom there was 
bad blood; that on pay days they would get in 
a saloon and after a few rounds of drinks become 
quarrelsome and want to fight. I told him to 
arrange it, if he could, so that they could have 
their fight without disturbing the peace and 
order of the community. The next time they got 
belligerent, he led them out to an orchard east 
of town, where a ring was made and the marshal 
appointed himself referee, timekeeper and master 
of ceremonies. Taking out his revolver to em- 
phasize his words, he informed the crowd which 
had followed the fighters that it was to be a 
fair fight to a finish and that the first man that 
interfered would be shot. Most of those present 
knew my marshal, Captain Lycurgus Reese, as a 
man who was as good as his word, so when he 
called time there wasn't any disposition to in- 
terfere with the festivities. The men fought 
until one of them was completely vanquished, 
and so that old feud was settled once and for all. 

As I write these lines, memory fondly recalls 
215 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

the names and faces of many dear friends of that 
day. A few of them still are in the land of the 
living but most of them have joined the great ma- 
jority on the other side. I wish I might here set 
down the splendid characteristics of each of 
them; but if I should attempt to do so, I would 
fill more than one volume with memories which 
are dear to my heart. What a wealth of golden 
memories cluster about these names : Berry Lem- 
ing, Al Brookings, Bill Brookings, Theophilus 
(Offie) Fountain, Dempsy Fountain, Abe Pugh, 
Jake Messmore, Don Onstott, John Beem, Marion 
Wright, Joe Solomon, John Bowlin, Major Skin- 
ner, S. G. Parks, Henry Horn, Tom Burgess, Billy 
Briggs, Charlie Richards, George Wall, Tom 
Wilson, John Higgins, Mun Crawford, Tom 
Berryhill, Judd Jennelle, Marshall Browning, 
Charlie Linzee and many, many others I might re- 
call. Of these "Johnnie" Beem, the veteran pub- 
lisher of the Du Quoin Tribune, is the only one 
of the old guard left in Du Quoin that I can now 
remember, but Joe Solomon, Charlie Richards 
and Bill Briggs are living in Chicago, and Judge 
Wall is living in Evanston. All the others have 
passed on. 

In the summer of 1881 my wife was in corre- 
spondence with a friend of hers of the name of 
Crawford whom she had known in Bloomington. 
Mr. and Mrs. Crawford were moving to the new 
town of Pullman which was then being estab- 

216 



BREAKING OLD TIES 



lished fourteen miles south of Chicago. They 
had arranged to take the management of the hotel 
then in course of erection at Pullman. Mrs. 
Crawford suggested to Mrs. McLean that there 
would be a splendid opportunity in the new town 
for a good physician and surgeon. My wife be- 
came enthusiastic about the matter and insisted 
that I investigate it, which I did. My investiga- 
tion satisfied me that it would be a good move 
for me to make, so in October of that year I went 
to Pullman. Crawford and his wife were there 
in the hotel which at that time was not com- 
pletely finished. 

The Hotel Florence, named for the splendid 
daughter of George M. Pullman, now wife of the 
Governor of Illinois, was the first public build- 
ing erected in the town. The Arcade, providing 
for most of the business activities of the new 
town, was also in course of construction. The 
church was also being built. The school house 
had not yet been erected, but a school was being 
conducted in a building which had been erected 
for the Rock Island Depot, but which was never 
used for that purpose because the railroad was 
not extended to Pullman as it was originally in- 
tended it should be. And so it happened that I 
was the first physician to settle in Pullman. 



217 



CHAPTER XXIV 
GEORGE M. PULLMAN 

About a month after we arrived in Pullman, I 
took occasion to call upon George M. Pullman in 
his uptown office in Chicago to discuss with him 
the possibility of making an arrangement to do 
the surgical work resulting from injuries sus- 
tained by the workmen in the plant. At that time 
there were about 400 men employed in different 
capacities in the Pullman works, and as there was 
a sure prospect for a great increase in that num- 
ber, I went to urge upon him the advisability of 
adding this human "repair department" to the 
otherwise complete equipment at the plant. 

Mr. Pullman was one of the most agreeable and 
most democratic men I have met. He received 
me very courteously, and listened attentively to 
my suggestions, in which I took occasion to tell 
him about my experience and ability to handle 
emergency surgery of the kind that might be 
expected in a great industrial concern like his. 
After discussing the matter for some time, and 
without reaching an agreement or conclusion, he 
launched into a running story of his career which 
was intensely interesting to me and which cov- 
ered, as I now remember, about an hour and a half 

218 



GEORGE M. PULLMAN 



in the telling. Briefly, the story was about as 
follows : 

* He was born in Chautauqua county, New York, 
in 1831. He had learned the trade of cabinet 
maker, and worked at that trade with an older 
brother, A. B. Pullman. When he was about of 
age, his attention was directed to an advertise- 
ment for bids for the building of the mule barns 
along the Erie Canal. Feeling that he was able to 
handle the undertaking, he submitted a bid and 
was awarded the contract, in the handling of 
which he was very successful. That constituted 
his start in life. 

While working on the Erie Canal contract, he 
noted in a Buffalo paper that some streets were 
to be widened in Buffalo, and that the work was 
to be let on contract. Figuring that he could 
move houses as well as he could build stables, he 
submitted a bid on the Buffalo improvement with 
the result that he secured the contract. His work 
in Buffalo attracted the attention of the Chicago 
people who were at that time contemplating im- 
portant changes in the street levels in the down- 
town district, and particularly in changing State 
street and in raising the abutting property. The 
contract for making these changes was awarded 
to him, and he moved to Chicago just shortly be- 
fore the outbreak of the Civil War. 

It was on a trip which he made from Buffalo to 
Chicago that the idea originated which, when 

219 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

worked out, made Pullman famous. He left Buf- 
falo on an afternoon train which reached Chi- 
cago the next morning. He explained to me that 
he did so because it was cheaper to travel at night 
and was also a time saver. There were at that 
time, of course, no sleeping accommodations on 
trains, so that in order to get any rest at all he 
had to dispose himself as best he could in the 
stiff, uncomfortable seats then in use on railway 
trains. The cars were light, the roadbed was very 
rough, the couplings were primitive, and the 
motive power was erratic and intermittent, with 
the net result that his rest was frequently broken. 
As he was trying to get into a position in his seat 
to get a little rest, his attention was attracted to 
the luggage rack above him, and it occurred to 
him that if that could be widened and lengthened 
it might be made to provide a place for passen- 
gers to recline and rest, and perhaps sleep. That 
was the germination of the idea which was finally 
evolved into the Pullman sleeper. 

Keeping the idea in mind, he experimented 
with it while engaged on his Chicago contract. 
Securing a couple of old, discarded passenger 
cars from the Chicago & Alton railway, he with 
his brother, A. B. Pullman, and James Gardiner, 
all cabinet makers, set about to transform the old 
passenger coaches into sleeping cars, on which 
letters patent were applied for and granted. Hav- 
ing worked out his idea in a practical way, Mr. 

220 



GEORGE M. PULLMAN 



Pullman found that his greatest difficulty would 
be to educate the public into adopting and using 
the new convenience, which was regarded with 
considerable suspicion as an infernal machine of 
some sort. 

His Chicago contract finished, he went out to 
Colorado where a great boom was in progress on 
account of recent discoveries of gold and silver 
in large quantities. He had not, however, aban- 
doned the idea of getting the world to adopt the 
child of his brain, so within a couple of years he 
came back to Chicago and built a new sleeper 
which he named the Pioneer. That car was built 
in 1863, and it may be seen today in the yards out 
at Pullman by anyone who is interested in noting 
the great advance which has been made in this 
one branch of human industry. When the car 
was completed, a trial trip was arranged, and sev- 
eral distinguished citizens were invited to make 
up a party to try out the new invention. Among 
these was long John Wentworth, who was so 
tall that he had to stoop considerably in order to 
get through the door. The trial was eminently 
satisfactory to every one concerned, and there- 
after the sleeping car became more and more 
popular, until today it is a common institution 
in American commercial life. It is truly won- 
derful to me to reflect that when I was born there 
was not a steam railroad in Illinois, all commerce 
worthy of the name being water borne; and that 

221 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

when I began the practice of medicine there was 
not a sleeping car or dining car in operation. 

Within a few years it became apparent that the 
business of manufacturing and operating sleeping 
cars would grow beyond the facilities then availa- 
ble for handling the business, which suggested 
the formation of a large corporation to exploit, 
develop and extend the new Jndustry. This re- 
sulted in the formation of thd Pullman Palace Car 
Company, which was organized in 1867. , The 
first manufacturing plant was established at Pal- 
myra, New York. In the early days of the sleep- 
ing car, they were not built completely of steel 
as they are now, but were then constructed mostly 
of wood, with ornate carvings and filigree work. 
It was soon found that Palmyra was too far from 
the supply of timber, so the plant was moved to 
Detroit, then the best market in the country for 
forest products. The gradual substitution of iron 
and steel for the disappearing wood construc- 
tion suggested another move; this time to the 
Illinois shore of Lake Michigan, and virtually 
alongside the great steel mills upon which the 
Pullman industry had to depend for a steady sup- 
ply of raw material. So it happened that, as 
water seeks its level, the Pullman Company found 
its permanent home in the Calumet region south 
of the great and growing metropolis of the Mis- 
sissippi valley and railway center of the United 
States. *-~ 

222 



GEORGE M. PULLMAN 



Through a prophetic eye and rare good judg- 
ment, Mr. Pullman foresaw that the region chosen 
by him for the shops would, before many years, 
be the greatest manufacturing district in the 
United States. H called my attention to the fact 
that Calumet Lake, adjoining the works on the 
east, could be made into an unexcelled, land- 
locked harbor and port; that this gave uninter- 
rupted water transportation between the iron 
mines of northern Michigan and Minnesota, so 
that he could buy iron and steel at the lowest pos- 
sible prices; that practically inexhaustible coal 
fields lay just to the south, thus assuring a con- 
tinuing supply of fuel; that the geographical lo- 
cation of Chicago made it the logical railway and 
transportation center of the Union. Backing his 
faith with all that he possessed and staking his 
future on the venture, he authorized the purchase 
of 4,500 acres of land contiguous to Lake Calumet, 
with the purpose in view of erecting there the 
Pullman shops, and building a community for his 
workmen which would be a model for industrial 
communities and a monument to the philanthropy 
and genius of its creator. 

With his business acumen, George M. Pullman 
combined most wonderful aesthetic tastes and 
ideals. He had an unerring instinct for graceful 
architecture and beautiful landscape effects. I 
have never forgotten a statement that he made in 
the course of our first conversation when he said 

223 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

x 

most earnestly and impressively: "Beauty has 
an intrinsic value." This was his central idea in 
working out the plans for the town of Pullman. 
He had had occasion, prior to that time, to employ 
the services of Spencer S. Beeman, a New York 
architect, and Nathan F. Barrett, a landscape en- 
gineer, in connection with plans for his home and 
surrounding grounds. Mr. Pullman was ill at 
home while they were engaged in that occupa- 
tion, and that gave him an opportunity to discuss 
with them the plans for the prospective city on 
the shore of Calumet, in the course of which he 
directed them to prepare detailed plans for his 
inspection the next time he should be in New 
York. These gentlemen did not treat the matter 
seriously, thinking that the magnificent ideas dis- 
cussed by the master builder were only the 
chimera of a fevered brain. Mr. Pullman laughed 
as he related to me how, on his next trip to New 
York, he sent a message to Mr. Beeman request- 
ing him to come over to the hotel with the plans ; 
how the architect pleaded a previous engagement 
and asked if the next morning would answer just 
as well ; how, when he found that he was expected 
to deliver the plans, he worked straight through 
the night making an outline of the ideas which 
he had thought were merely delirious dreams; 
and how, when the sketch was presented the next 
morning, it was found to be a faithful delineation 
of the "dreams," requiring but a very few changes. 

224 



GEORGE M. PULLMAN 



After these were made, the plans were approved, 
and Messrs. Beeman and Barrett were commis- 
sioned to work them out in detail, not only on 
paper but on the shore of Lake Calumet, where 
the town of Pullman was founded in 1880. It was 
in the year following, and before the public 
buildings were up, that I settled there. 

The town as originally planned included school, 
church, library, bank, theater and retail stores in 
which almost everything was sold except alco- 
holic liquors. I believe Pullman was the first 
"dry" town in Cook County, made so by the stern 
decree of its founder, whose word was law and 
law of the same kind as that of the Medes and the 
Persians. If there was any one institution George 
M. Pullman could not tolerate it was the open 
saloon. The homes of the workmen were all built 
and owned by the company, and leased to the em- 
ployees, and this custom prevailed until the Illi- 
nois Supreme Court handed down a decision that 
the company could not own any more real estate 
than was absolutely necessary to carry out the 
purposes of the corporation. -' That decision was 
the big factor in the subsequent disintegration of 
Pullman's Pullman, because under it the company 
had to sell the homes which had been maintained 
for the workmen, and in this way outside interests 
gradually gained a foothold, until now the town 
is not very different from other industrial centers 
in Chicago. 

225 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

Mr. Pullman lived some sixteen or seventeen 
years after his town was founded, and, without 
reflection on the living, it may be truthfully said 
that the soul of the town went out with that of the 
great man in whose soul and brain it was born. 

In 1887, he invented the train vestibule, now a 
common convenience and safety device on every 
through passenger train; and in the same year 
introduced the dining car to travelers, the pioneer 
diner going into service on the Union Pacific 
Railroad. 

I have said that Mr. Pullman's decisions were 
final. That was true, but there are exceptions to 
all rules, and I will pause to tell of an incident 
where he was influenced to countermand his own 
orders. A competent workman in the shops had 
rigged out an old buggy with a gasoline engine 
and a chain drive on the rear axle the progenitor 
of our modern automobile and secured the con- 
sent of Mr. Pullman to inspect the device. It was 
a sultry day in midsummer, with a broiling sun 
overhead. Mr. Pullman came out on a train from 
the city, getting off at lllth street, where he was 
met at the station by the inventor. Together they 
got into the horseless vehicle, and rode up to the 
north end of the works at about 103d street, when 
the gasoline gave out or something happened to 
interfere with the working of the engine which, 
up to that time, had been doing very well. The 
inventor being unable to start it again, Mr. Pull- 

226 



GEORGE M. PULLMAN 



man looked about for means of getting back to 
the hotel on lllth street. A telephone call to the 
stable revealed the fact that all the conveyances 
were out that afternoon in attendance at a funeral, 
and there was no conveyance to be had, so he had 
to set out on foot through the heat and dust. As 
he walked he became warmer, and as his tempera- 
ture arose, his temper went with it. Every man 
who crossed his path felt his displeasure, and by 
the time he reached the hotel he had bodily fired 
a number of employees, including some at the 
hotel. As he sat on the veranda of the hotel sip- 
ping cold lemonade while waiting for his train, 
he cooled off perceptibly; and as he was leaving 
the hotel to take the train, he rather sheepishly 
said to his fiscal agent in Pullman : "I had occa- 
sion today to order the discharge of several em- 
ployees ; please see that the order is held in abey- 
ance until you hear from me further in reference 
to it." And that closed the incident. 

George M. Pullman died in 1897. Into his com- 
paratively short life of 66 years, he had crowded 
the activities of a dozen average lives; and 
although the master mind is gone, and although 
he could not put his soul into the great corpora- 
tion which perpetuates his industrial activity, his 
spirit and philanthropic purpose still survive in 
the free manual training school recently erected 
out of his bounty that the children of his work- 
men might have an opportunity to fit themselves 
for useful occupations. 

227 



CHAPTER XXV 
MAKING THE MODEL TOWN 

From the time that the Pullman sleeping car 
became an assured success, its creator cherished 
the ambition to erect a model town in which his 
workmen might dwell in comfort and happiness 
in a community where there were no outside in- 
terests or influences. To do this required an ex- 
tended area of ground under the ownership and 
control of a single interest. This led to the 
selection of the site in the Calumet region as 
offering the largest tract available, with both land 
and water transportation at hand. 

From my talk with Mr. Pullman I received the 
impression that Lake Calumet was a controlling 
factor in the selection; and he began building 
there with unbounded faith that the surrounding 
region would some day be the industrial center 
of America. Time has justified his faith. 

To acquire the necessary acreage to put his 
plans in operation was a delicate undertaking in 
itself. Had Mr. Pullman gone into the market 
in his own name, he would have defeated his pur- 
pose, because the minute it became known he was 
a heavy buyer of the Calumet marsh lands, prices 

228 



MAKING THE MODEL TOWN 



would have soared to a prohibitive point. So he 
operated through Col. James H. Bowen, and so 
skillfully did the latter carry on his negotiations 
that he had purchased some 3,000 acres from sev- 
enty-five different owners at an approximate cost 
of one million dollars before his principal became 
known. After that, about 1,500 acres additional 
were acquired for future development. 

Of the total acreage acquired, about 500 acres 
were dedicated as a site for the new town, the 
remainder being held for future additions to the 
great industrial city which was to grow as other 
manufactories located there. The site of the town 
was surveyed by Welland F. Sargent, assisted 
by William Lee. Mr. Sargent is now, at the time 
of writing, Commissoiner of Public Works in Oak 
Park, a thriving suburb of Chicago on the west 
side. 

One of the factors in the location of Pullman 
was the fact that the clay on the shore of Lake 
Calumet was admirably adapted to the making of 
a fine grade of brick. This presented a conserva- 
tion project of a double aspect. As the clay was 
dredged for brick making, slips were deepened for 
the expected water-borne commerce of the future. 
Thus did the town of Pullman virtually rise from 
the shores of Lake Calumet, the structures being 
composed principally of these Calumet brick, the 
manufacture of which continued after the town 
was built. 

229 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

Those familiar with what is known as the Calu- 
met region adjacent to Lake Calumet know that 
the surrounding land surface is elevated but 
slightly above the level of the lake, which made 
of that country, before drainage was installed, an 
extended marsh. It has been said that the early 
settlers after severe rains found their way about 
the territory in skiffs. This presented a difficulty 
requiring the most skillful engineering to correct 
and improve. The problem of sewage and drain- 
age was worked out by Benezette Williams, one 
of the most competent sewage and drainage engi- 
neers of his time. 

After the site was established and made ready 
for the shops and buildings, the detailed draw- 
ings for the public buildings were made by Mr. 
Beeman, assisted by Irving K. Pond, a Chicago 
architect who has acquired a national reputation 
for the quality of his work. The arrangement 
of the public buildings and the residential district 
was under the direction of Mr. Nathan F. Barrett, 
landscape engineer. The combined genius of these 
builders produced a model city in the Calumet 
marsh which soon became famous throughout the 
land. 

At the time the town of Pullman was built, 
A. B. Pullman, brother of George M., had gen- 
eral supervision over all the plants of the Pull- 
man Company, and in that capacity had charge 
of the building of Pullman. Mr. T. A. Bissell, 

230 



MAKING THE MODEL TOWN 



at that time manager of the Detroit shops of 
the Pullman Company, laid out the general plan 
and directed the erection of the shops at Pull- 
man. I understood he was offered the position of 
general manager of the new Pullman works, but 
for some reason or other declined it. 

All the carpenter work in the building of the 
new town was under the direction of Dan Martin, 
the first carpenter of Pullman, who became after- 
ward the head of the woodworking department in 
the shops. The brick and masonry construction 
was under the direction of R. E. Moss, whose son, 
Edward Moss, still lives in Chicago. Some of the 
later brick construction was done by Alex. Mc- 
Laughlin, whose sons, William, James and John 
P., are still engaged in business in the neighbor- 
hood. 

The first inhabitant or, rather, the first person 
to occupy a habitation in one of the new houses 
in Pullman, was E. A. Benson. He was a practical 
car builder, and came to Pullman as the first super- 
intendent of the erecting shops where the cars 
were assembled and the finished product turned 
out. Later he became Mechanical Superintendent 
of the company. He retired from active service 
some time ago, but his son, Harry Benson, holds 
a prominent place in the Pullman Company as 
Superintendent of the Buffalo shops. 

The men I have mentioned thus far were prac- 
tical builders and at the head of their several 

231 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

professions and trades. In addition to these there 
were many others who contributed to the splen- 
did result achieved, but whose part in it I am 
unable to set down in this biography for lack of 
space. 

Mr. Pullman generally had in his employ a num- 
ber of men who apparently had no specific work 
to do or duties to perform. They were not engi- 
neers, they were not builders, they were not cabi- 
net makers, and they were not captains of indus- 
try. I recall that in the early days of the town 
of Pullman a Mr. H. I. Kimball became associated 
with the company, although I do not remember 
that he had a title. I think he had been in the 
hotel business in Atlanta, Ga., and I deduced from 
that that he occupied a sort of advisory position 
with reference to the Hotel Florence in Pullman. 
Following him came a Scotchman named Robert 
Caird, who was understood to have considerable 
authority but no title. These men, and others 
like them who followed, with no definite status 
in the company, were generally men of education 
and of ability which was not related to practical 
car building. So far as managing the shops, the 
operating division or the town of Pullman was 
concerned, they were simply idealists ; and I have 
thought at times that Mr. Pullmna retained them 
because he thought they might contribute to the 
organizaion new and fresh ideas. An individual 
of this class never stayed very long, and his suc- 

232 



MAKING THE MODEL TOWN 



cessor was on the job before he left; in fact, the 
General had a clever way of pitting these men 
against each other so that it became simply a ques- 
tion of a survival of the fittest. 

At the time of the building of Pullman there 
was an office created in the company by Mr. Pull- 
man which has survived to the present day, the 
title of which is Assistant to the President. In 
Mr. Pullman's day, the person who held this posi- 
tion was his fidus Achates, and through him Mr. 
Pullman maintained a close 'touch and co-opera- 
tion between the general offices up town and the 
works out at Pullman. If my memory serves me 
correctly, the first person to occupy this position 
was Colonel W. E. Barrows, who resided at the 
Hotel Florence, where he kept in close touch with 
the officials at the shops. He was practically man- 
ager at the plant during his incumbency. His 
title of Colonel was earned in the Civil War, in 
which he served in a New England regiment. 
After several years' connection with the Pullman 
Company, he went back East. The last I heard of 
him he was in the manufacturing business in 
Philadelphia. 

The new town was provided with all of the 
idjuncts and attributes of a cultured community, 
Aicluding schools, churches, library, theater, bank, 
Stores, club and a first-class hotel. The model 
homes in the residence portion of the town were 
erected, owned and maintained by the company 

233 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

in order to maintain uniformity and to prevent 
outside interests from intruding into the life of 
the town. 

The Arcade building, just below lllth street 
and east of the Illinois Central tracks, was planned 
to be an ideal community center, the pioneer of 
its kind in the city of Chicago. In it was located 
the bank, the postoffice, the theater, some stores, 
a billiard parlor, a restaurant and the public li- 
brary containing some 5,000 volumes, established 
as a gift from George M. Pullman to the town 
which perpetuated his name. The first librarian 
was Mrs. F. L. Fake, whose son, Fred L. Fake, 
was later a judge of the Municipal Court of Chi- 
cago, and is now a practicing attorney residing 
in the Hyde Park district. 

If there was any one feature of the new town 
on which Mr. Pullman prided himself, it was the 
little theater in the Arcade. It was beautifully 
finished, and was acclaimed the most perfect the- 
ater west of New York. The drop curtain was a 
work of art, representing a Turkish scene with the 
blue Mediterranean in the distance. The theater 
accommodated about 1,000 persons and, in the early 
days of Pullman, was a distinctive feature of our 
social life. It may be remembered by the "old 
ones" that at the opening performance in the 
beautiful new theater the guest of honor in the 
Pullman private box was General Phil Sheridan. 
Later, at a luncheon tendered Sir Henry Irving 

234 



MAKING THE MODEL TOWN 



and Ellen Terry by Mr. Pullman at the Hotel 
Florence, the eminent English actor paid the mas- 
ter builder a glowing tribute for the creation of 
the little playhouse; and Lawrence Barrett, the 
great American tragedian, is said to have ex- 
claimed on viewing the theater that it was "not 
excelled in beauty or completeness by any in the 
country !" 

Some of the best talent in the theatrical world 
has "trod the boards" in the Pullman theater, but 
in the disintegration of the social life of the town 
following the decision of the Illinois Supreme 
Court which compelled the Company to relinquish 
ownership of all the property not essential to the 
"business" of the corporation, the theater fell into 
disuse, and does not now even boast the modern 
and ubiquitous "movie." The history of the Pull- 
man theater is the history of the town as it was 
conceived by Pullman, and a comparison of its 
condition at present with its palmy early days 
shows how far the town has slumped from 
the high ideals of George M. Pullman. The spirit 
of Pullman has departed, and in its place the spirit 
of the Supreme Court's decision is writ large over 
everything. Beauty has been sacrificed to Busi- 
ness! 

In religious belief, the Pullmans were ardent 
Universalists. Two brothers of George M. Pull- 
man were ministers of that faith, and had degrees 
as Doctors of Divinity. The elder of the two, 

235 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

Doctor Royal H. Pullman, was totally blind dur- 
ing his latter years. The other, Doctor James M. 
Pullman, preached the dedication sermon of the 
community church erected in Pullman. I am sure 
the founder would have been pleased to see the 
church occupied by a Universalist congregation, 
but he was not of a nature to impose his religious 
views on others, so the church was conducted as 
a union church available on equal terms for all 
the church societies which wanted to use it. The 
first regular sermon preached in the new church 
was delivered by A. B. Pullman, another brother 
to whom reference has already been made. 

In the general aspect of the town there was 
not a hideous or objectionable feature that I can 
remember, but, to the contrary, on every side the 
eye was met by pleasing, harmonious effects. In 
what is now the northeast corner of Cottage Grove 
avenue and lllth street, there was an artificial 
lake entirely surrounded by beautiful flowers. 
Every street was lined with beautiful, flowering 
plants, and the base of each tree was a beautiful 
flower bed, purposely so designed by Mr. Barrett 
because, as he explained, the flowers were sure to 
be watered and the trees thereby would also bene- 
fit. Through his foresight, not a tree was lost. 

Lest it be thought that I have been somewhat 
extravagant in my statements about the beauty 
of the town of Pullman as it was conceived and 
built by the master builder, it may be well for me 

236 



MAKING THE MODEL TOWN 



to record the fact that George M. Pullman was 
decorated by the Italian Government for the build- 
ing of the model city. This recognition, coming 
from the land where art is renowned, speaks more 
eloquently than I could of the fame of our little 
community. 

The beauty of Pullman has long since departed, 
and nothing is left to suggest its former glory 
aside from the stately architecture of the original 
public buildings and their artistic arrangement. 
What a pity it could not be maintained as Pullman 
conceived it, to bless the Pullman employees with 
health and comfort and to surround their growing 
families with those enduring things of life which 
educate and elevate the human being. The only 
evidence of the wholesome Pullman influence left 
is the manual training school, erected out of the 
bounty of the founder of the town, and in which 
his constructive spirit still lives ! 



237 



CHAPTER XXVI 
PIONEERS OF PULLMAN 

In handling such a broad subject within the 
limits of a single chapter, it will be necessary for 
me to forego the inclination and the desire to 
record the names of hundreds of dear friends 
made in my new field of labor, and to limit my- 
self to a very few who will be referred to in con- 
nection with institutions in the new town. I 
should like to fill a whole book with pleasant mem- 
ories of many happy days, and to people those 
days with names and faces which pass before my 
mind's eye as I write, but the proper limit of my 
narrative will not permit of such pleasing rev- 
eries. 

My friends who knew of our home life in Pull- 
man from the time we moved there until the death 
of Mrs. McLean will remember that my good wife 
kept open house where our friends and neighbors 
were ever welcome, and will remember the cheer- 
ful atmosphere of hospitality which pervaded 
our home and which seemed to radiate from her 
presence like perfume from the flower. To the 
many of those dear friends whose names do not 
appear in my story, I wish to extend assurance 

238 



PIONEERS OF PULLMAN 



that the old ties and times are not forgotten but 
are yet treasured and will be cherished to the end. 

Soon after my conversation with Mr. Pullman 
in his office uptown, I was appointed Company 
surgeon to give medical attention to the men 
injured in the works. That work did not take 
nearly all my time, as there were only a few hun- 
dred employed in the works then, so I had time to 
engage in private practice, which grew very rap- 
idly. In this way I had a splendid opportunity 
to extend my acquaintance among the newcomers, 
and in many cases I was the entire reception com* 
mittee to receive "new arrivals." 

While Pullman was in the making, and up to 
the time that the town was taken into the City 
of Chicago in 1889, I had the honor and the dis- 
tinction of presiding over the affairs of the local 
school board. So it was that I was brought into 
intimate association with the men who had the 
making of Pullman, and I will endeavor to intro- 
duce a few of these in the order of their appear- 
ance in the town, as nearly as I can now remember. 

One of the gentlemen who served with me on 
the school board and whose genial friendship it is 
a pleasure to remember, was Eli C. Tourtelot, who 
began his service with the Pullman Company as 
an office boy before the town of Pullman was built, 
and who continued with the Company for a period 
of twenty-three years. When building operations 
began on the shore of Lake Calumet, he was sent 

239 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

out there as an assistant to a Mr. Brown, whose 
duty it was to see that supplies for the workmen 
were steadily forthcoming so that building opera- 
tions would not be delayed. When the shops were 
opened, Mr. Tourtelot became the first paymaster, 
and was later promoted to the position of Chief 
Clerk in the manager's office under H. H. Hewitt 
when the latter was assistant manager. Mr. Tour- 
telot left the Company during the World's Fair 
in 1893 to go into business for himself, in which 
he has achieved success. He lives in Oak Park, 
and is at present connected with the Hewitt Mfg. 
Co., one of several manufacturing concerns in 
which Herbert H. Hewitt, former assistant man- 
ager at Pullman, is interested. Mr. Hewitt is now 
living in Buffalo, and stands high in the industrial 
world as a producer of manufactured brass. 

Another gentleman with whom I served on the 
school board was Edward Henricks, the first Town 
Agent of Pullman, in which capacity he had a 
general supervision over the residential portion of 
the town, over which he was practically Mayor. 
Captain Henricks was a man of liberal education, 
having been graduated from the U. S. Naval Acad- 
emy, and was related to the Pullmans through his 
mother, whose sister was Mrs. Pullman's mother. 
The families both came to Chicago from South 
Bend, Indiana, where Mrs. Pullman's father, 
James Y. Sanger, and Mr. Henrick's father, John 
A. Henricks, one of the early settlers of northern 

240 



PIONEERS OF PULLMAN 



Indiana, were associated together in the contract- 
ing business under the firm name of Sanger & 
Henricks. This firm had the contract to carry the 
mails between Detroit and Chicago before the 
railroads were thought of. When the Illinois & 
Michigan Canal was projected, Sanger & Hen- 
ricks bid on the work and were awarded a large 
section of the construction work. James Y. Sanger 
built the Illinois penitentiary at Joliet. It was 
an outgrowth of the relations between George M. 
Pullman and the firm of Sanger & Henricks that 
he met and married Miss Sanger. 

The father of Mrs. Henricks, Noah F. Van 
Winkle, was the first postmaster at Pullman and 
served in that capacity until the exigencies of 
politics, brought about by the election of Grover 
Cleveland as President, made it necessary for Mr. 
VanWinkle to retire. Going to Florida the fol- 
lowing winter, he purchased some land near 
Tampa with a view of raising citrus fruits. Re- 
turning to Pullman the following year to wind up 
his affairs there, he was stricken with apoplexy 
and died. 

Mr. and Mrs. Henricks spent many pleasant 
hours in our home, and the cordial friendship 
which grew up between us has been maintained 
throughout the intervening years since we first 
became acquainted in the early days. They are 
now living in retirement in their home in Ken- 
wood. Their oldest son, John, is engaged in busi- 

241 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

ness in New York City ; their daughter Louise, is 
the wife of Wm. M. Ryan, who started with the 
Pullman Company as a clerk and worked up to 
the position of foreman, after which he severed 
his connection with the Company and went into 
business for himself as a manufacturer of freight 
cars, his firm being the Ryan Car Company, of 
Hegewisch, Illinois. He has been very successful 
in his business. The youngest son, Lieutenant 
Harold Henricks, is in the aviation service with 
the American Expeditionary Forces in France. 

These old friends have earned the benediction, 
"Well done, good and faithful servants." May 
they live many years to enjoy their reward ! 

I have already made mention of the fact that the 
first school was taught in the building erected 
for the Rock Island depot but which was never 
to fulfill that hopeful prophecy because the Rock 
Island deflected its line at Blue Island into Chi- 
cago for the reason that it could not make a sat- 
isfactory arrangement for terminal facilities on 
the line first projected. D. R. Martin was the first 
teacher in that school, in which he was at first the 
whole teaching force of Pullman, and he has re- 
mained throughout the years in charge of educa- 
tion in Pullman, although he does not now live 
in the town. 

When our school had developed to a point where 
we needed additional teachers, I secured an ap- 
pointment for Miss Helen Ferguson, a niece of 

242 



PIONEERS OF PULLMAN 



mine in DuQuoin. This resulted in the family, 
consisting of Mrs. Anna Ferguson, her son and 
three daughters, moving to Pullman, where the 
son, Matthew Ferguson, was employed by the 
Company. The son, while delivering a train of 
cars to a railroad in Louisville, was killed in a 
railroad wreck in Indiana. The daughter Helen 
still teaches in the Pullman school, where she 
enjoys the reputation of being a most efficient 
instructor. Another daughter, Florence, became 
the wife of William Lee, heretofore mentioned, 
and their children have grown up, married and 
established homes for themselves. Henry Lee, a 
son of William Lee by a former marriage, is the 
owner and publisher of the Calumet Record, a 
weekly paper in South Chicago, and was commis- 
sioned a Major in the U. S. Army shortly after 
this country took up arms against Germany. Mr. 
William Lee is at present engaged in engineer- 
ing work for the city of Chicago, and the family 
lives in the Hyde Park district. 

When the beautiful and cozy little theater 
which was the pride of Pullman was opened it 
was under the management of George W. Hack- 
ney, and remained under his direction as long as it 
was operated. In addition to the fact that we both 
saw service in the Union Army in Illinois regi- 
ments, and in addition to our personal relations 
through which a firm friendship was established 
between us, there was an added bond between 

243 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

George Hackney and me consisting of a mutual 
friendship with Hon. Henry (Hank) Evans, late 
of Aurora, for many years a picturesque and influ- 
ential figure in the State Senate and in Illinois 
Republican politics. Senator Evans was a brother- 
in-law of Jacob Messmore, mentioned among the 
old friends in DuQuoin. A bosom friend of Hack- 
ney's was William (Billy) Quinn, who became 
connected with the office force while E. C. Tour- 
telot was Chief Clerk. These two old chums still 
live in Pullman, although neither is employed 
there. 

This reminds me that there are few, very few, 
of the pioneers of Pullman who still live in the 
town itself. Just now I recall another, Mr. H. G. 
Reynolds, who started there as a machinist the 
year after I moved there. He is still employed in 
the shops, one of the rapidly disappearing few 
who began when the Company was established in 
Pullman and who can now describe the evolution 
of the Pullman Palace Car to its modern steel 
form from the ornate and expensive wooden pro- 
duction which was first turned out, and who has 
seen the model town of 1882 retrograde into the 
average industrial center of a great city. 

Another of the pioneers of Pullman who was to 
me all that a friend could be was Major John L. 
Woods, who went to Pullman in 1880 as manager 
of the Allen Paper Car Wheel Company, later a 
subsidiary of the Pullman Company. Major 

244 



PIONEERS OF PULLMAN 



Woods became at once a leading spirit in the 
affairs of the new town. He was the first presi- 
dent of the Pullman Athletic Club, which might 
be said to be the progenitor of the Pullman Club, 
and I served with him on the executive committee 
of the athletic club in its infancy. 

Major Woods and I had many things in com- 
mon. We both saw active service in the Civil 
War, and both were inspired in our patriotic im- 
pulse from a common source. Although we did 
not meet at the time, he was in St. Louis when I 
was a medical student there and when the war 
broke out. Unknown to each other we attended 
patriotic meetings and demonstrations there un- 
der the auspices of Congressman Frank P. Blair 
and Nathaniel Lyon, who later became a general 
in the Union army and was killed at Wilson's 
Creek. I am under the impression that Major 
Woods was one of the troop under Captain Lyon 
which broke up the rebel "Camp Jackson" at St. 
Louis. The activities of Blair and Lyon and their 
cohorts had the net effect of preventing the State 
of Missouri from seceding from the Union. At 
any rate, Major Woods began his service under 
Lyon and gained successive promotions until he 
had acquired the rank of Captain. When the war 
ended, he was retired with the rank of Major. 

I have always fondly cherished the cordial 
friendship which existed between the Major and 
me, and the many, many pleasant hours of delight- 

245 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

ful association I have enjoyed with him and his 
good wife, both of whom were frequent and wel- 
come visitors to our home. The Major keenly en- 
joyed a game of whist or a little game of "draw," 
and in those light pastimes we sat down with our 
friends and neighbors and with distinguished vis- 
itors, including ex-Governor Beveridge, Judge 
"Mun" Crawford from southern Illinois, and 
many others. 

Major Woods has now retired from active busi- 
ness, in which he was attended with such well- 
deserved fortune that he and his splendid wife 
are now able to spend their winters in the con- 
genial climate of Florida. It was a coincidence 
that their only son, Edwin Woods, a splendid fel- 
low about the age of my son, died just a short time 
previous to the death of my good wife. I hope 
that the declining days of my good friends, the 
Major and his wife, may be filled with sunshine 
and peace. They deserve so much for the good 
they have done! 

I wish I might continue writing of the old 
friends of the early days and those who came after 
them, but my space is limited and I have some 
further facts of a more general nature to record. 
This is not a history of Pullman, but rather a run- 
ning account of the growth and development of 
Illinois for the past one hundred years as it was 
told to me by those who helped make that history 
and as I have seen it made. 

246 



CHAPTER XXVII 
THE EVOLUTION OF MODERN PULLMAN 

When the town of Pullman was established it 
was the sanguine belief of its founder that other 
manufacturing concerns would be attracted to the 
vicinity. It was for that reason that many hun- 
dred acres of land were acquired in excess of the 
needs of the car company. I am sure that it was 
Mr. Pullman's idea that in the course of time the 
whole 4,500 acres would be covered with great in- 
dustrial plants, forming a large community built 
in harmony with the model city. A few concerns 
did locate there, industries which were allied to 
the car-building business, but the expected gen- 
eral movement to the Calumet region did not 
materialize. 

Among the concerns which did locate there 
was the Allen Paper Car Wheel Company, of 
which my good friend, Major John L. Woods, 
was manager. This company controlled patents 
under which it manufactured car wheels out of 
paper. This was done by subjecting layer upon 
layer of heavy bristol board to a terrific pressure, 
securing a product of great tensile strength and 
not subject to the action of heat and cold like iron. 
This pressed paper was bolted firmly between two 

247 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

steel discs, or outside plates, from under the outer 
rims of which the paper "filling" extended one or 
two inches, forming a cushion on which the steel 
tire was fitted. This wheel was supposed to pos- 
sess not only a certain resiliency, but also a tend- 
ency to muffle the sound the ordinary iron wheel 
makes in passing over the rail joints. The paper 
wheel gradually went out of use, and at present 
the all-metal wheel is used exclusively. 

One of the younger generation of Pullman men 
who acquired an enviable standing in the com- 
munity was connected with the Car Wheel Com- 
pany as assistant to Major Woods. That was 
Carl C. Hewitt (not related to Charles and Her- 
bert Hewitt), who was with the Allen concern a 
number of years, and then went into business in 
Pullman for himself. He has lately turned his 
attention to agriculture, having purchased some 
farming land near Elgin. 

The experience of the Car Wheel Company 
was the experience of all the manufacturing con- 
cerns which located at Pullman. For a time it did 
business as an independent concern, but as prac- 
tically all of its business came from the Pullman 
Company, it became in process of time a sub- 
sidiary of the parent company, and was finally 
merged into it as a part or a department of the 
shops. 

The bank was not established at the time the 
town was built, but it soon developed that bank- 

248 



THE EVOLUTION OF MODERN PULLMAN 

ing facilities would be needed in the town. At 
first the money for the payrolls was taken out 
from the city, but as the number of employees 
increased this method became more and more 
cumbersome and dangerous, and the need of a 
local bank was fulfilled by the organization and 
incorporation in 1883 of the Pullman Loan and 
Savings Bank, of which W. A. Lincoln was the 
directing head. Mr. Lincoln was treasurer of the 
Pullman Athletic Club, and served on its execu- 
tive committee with Major Woods, Edward Hen- 
ricks and me. The bank became an important 
factor in holding the community interests to- 
gether, and has continued to be the stabilizing 
institution of the town, as we shall see later. 

Very soon after people began to move into 
Pullman, a band was organized under the leader- 
ship of Jacob Hostrawser, and it will be remem- 
bered that for many years the Pullman band was 
accounted one of the leading musical organiza- 
tions of the State. Public concerts were given in 
a stand erected just south of the Hotel Florence 
for that purpose, but these were discontinued 
many years ago. The Pullman band, as originally 
organized, did not seem to fit into disorganized 
Pullman. Mr. Hostrawser still lives in Pullman, 
where he is employed as head timekeeper. 

The development of the Pullman Company from 
the industrial side divides itself naturally into 
three periods: Early, Middle and Modern. 

249 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

Roughly speaking, in point of time, the Early pe- 
riod extended from the building of the shops to 
about 1889, during which time the old style cars 
were built, almost entirely of wood, with ornate 
interior decorations and unprotected platforms 
at both ends. The Middle period was approxi- 
mately from 1889 to 1907, during which time the 
cars were constructed largely of wood, but the 
ornate interior decorations slowly disappeared, 
and the added vestibules were the prominent fea- 
ture. The Pullman patents on this feature prac- 
tically put the Wagner Company, the only com- 
petitor of the Pullman Company, out of business. 
The Modern period extended from 1907 to the 
present. During this period the standard Pullman 
car was a car of all-steel construction, with severely 
plain interior decoration. There has recently been 
a reaction from this standard, I am informed, and 
there is now a tendency in the designing depart- 
ment to reinstate wood to a limited extent for in- 
terior decoration so as to soften the rather harsh 
lines of the steel interiors. 

The first resident manager of the Pullman 
shops was a man from Ohio of the name of J. H. F. 
Wiers. He did not remain long in the position, 
and was succeeded by A. Rapp, who, after a com- 
paratively short service, severed his connection 
with the company, and went to St. Charles, Mo., 
where he was employed in a manufacturing plant 
of Mr. C. M. Hewitt, referred to heretofore. 

250 



THE EVOLUTION OF MODERN PULLMAN 

After a few years' absence, Mr. Rapp came back 
to Pullman, and was employed until his death as 
a designer of car interiors. He was a man of such 
friendly disposition that he is remembered af- 
fectionately by hundreds of Pullman folk. Fol- 
lowing Rapp came Bradley, Spaulding, Stone and 
Sessions. It was in the latter's administration 
that the modern train vestibule, controlled by 
Pullman patents, was brought to a state of service- 
able perfection. All these men, I believe, have 
gone over the great divide. The next manager 
was Harvey W. Middleton, who served during the 
World's Fair and the great strike of 1894. Soon 
after this he left Pullman, and the last I heard of 
him was that he was doing quite well in the rail- 
way supply business in Baltimore. Following 
Middleton came Arthur M. Parent, who was man- 
ager at the time that Mr. Pullman died and con- 
tinued as manager until his own death. 

It is my impression that Mr. Edward R. Slagle, 
who followed Mr. Parent, was the last man who 
held the title of resident manager, because we 
referred to his successor, Thomas Dunbar, as the 
superintendent of the shops. Mr. Slagle was in 
the course of time taken to the uptown office of 
the company, where he has since been employed 
as contracting agent for the company, and Mr. 
Dunbar was left in Pullman as superintendent. 
The latter started with the company as a lad 
working on a planer in the shops, and mounted the 

251 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

ladder step by step, until he was head of the 
whole works. He is now engaged in business for 
himself as head of the Aetna Iron Works. It has 
doubtless been noted by my readers that many 
captains of industry have been graduated from 
the Pullman shops. I enjoyed a most cordial 
friendship with Mr. Dunbar, and regarded him 
as one of the most capable of the many who came 
and went while I was there. It is true that I may 
have been partial because he is a Scotchman, but, 
aside from that, he is of the staunch type with 
whom I like to be "verra thick," as Lauder would 
say. 

The next superintendent of the shops was Rob- 
ert Tinsley, who came to Pullman in the early 
90s, if my memory serves me correctly, from the 
Grand Trunk Railway in Canada, and took a posi- 
tion as a clerk in the accountant's office. His 
services were such as to commend him for re- 
peated promotions until he was head of the shops. 
He did not hold the place long, however, volun- 
tarily quitting it to engage in the railway supply 
business for himself. He is now in the military 
service of the Government, being captain of a 
regiment of Engineers in the field in France. 

This brings my story up to the present superin- 
tendent, Francis M. Gunn, who will be considered 
in a subsequent chapter on the Pullman of today. 

The Pullman Company, as it was organized, was 
supported on a tripod, the legs of which were rep- 

252 



THE EVOLUTION OF MODERN PULLMAN 

resented by the shops, the town and the operating 
division. The shops where the manufactured 
product was turned out were under the direction 
of one man, the manager; all things relating to 
the living conditions in the town of Pullman 
were under the jurisdiction of another man, the 
town agent; and that portion of the business 
which had to do with the operation of Pullman 
cars on the different railroads of the country was 
under the direction of yet another official, whose 
jurisdiction was apart from the town and the 
shops. All of these activities were co-ordinated 
and supervised in the general offices of the com- 
pany uptown. 

The first town agent, as I have shown, was Cap- 
tain Edward Henricks. He was followed by Dr. 
James Chasey, a genial gentleman of splendid 
personality. He was agent at the time that Mr. 
Pullman gave the orders to "fire" a number of 
employees, and it was to Dr. Chasey that Mr. Pull- 
man gave the order to withhold action until fur- 
ther orders. Dr. Chasey was followed in turn by 
William J. Appleyard, E. P. Hoornbeek, Henry 
A. Sanger and Duane Doty, who was the last of 
the town agents. There are many things I should 
like to mention in connection with the adminis- 
trations of these officials, but I am unable to do so. 

The office of president of the company was held 
by Mr. Pullman until his death, when the mantle 
fell on the worthy shoulders of Robert T. Lincoln, 

253 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

son of the Great Emancipator. I am under the 
impression that Mr. Pullman named Mr. Lincoln 
and Frank O. Lowden, his son-in-law (the present 
chief executive of our State), as the executors of 
Mr. Pullman's will. In 1911, Mr. Lincoln laid 
down the arduous duties of the office of president, 
but has continued his connection with the com- 
pany in the position of chairman of the board of 
directors. Mr. Lincoln was succeeded in the of- 
fice of president by John S. Runnells, who had 
been general counsel of the Pullman Company 
since 1887, and its vice president since 1905. 

Those who lived in Pullman from its birth in 
the early 80s up to the beginning of the present 
century will doubtless recall the fact that as the 
Pullman car industry increased and enlarged, the 
community life of the town waned in an almost 
equal inverse proportion. Each year it became 
more apparent that the philanthropic ideals of 
George M. Pullman and the elements and condi- 
tions governing industrial conditions in the Unit- 
ed States were irreconcilable. The town was built 
on the theory that it would be possible always to 
maintain a close community of interest between 
the company and its employees; and while there 
was a splendid spirit of harmony for the first few 
years, this was dispelled by the rise of the union 
labor movement, the practical result of which was 
to stifle individuality and to make all the em- 
ployees conform to a dead level of wages and pro- 

254 



THE EVOLUTION OF MODERN PULLMAN 

duction. Then came the death of Mr. Pullman, 
which removed the guiding spirit of his com- 
munity. Then came the final blow in the court 
proceedings in which it was decided that the Pull- 
man Company could not own and control the 
homes of the workmen, the court laying down the 
death sentence of the community by holding that 
the ownership of the homes was not a proper func- 
tion of the corporation under its charter. So it 
was by degrees that the model industrial city of 
the world was reduced to the common standard of 
the ordinary industrial community of a great 
city. 



255 



CHAPTER XXVIII 
SOME MEN OF PULLMAN 

As I have heretofore said, it would be a pleas- 
ure to write a history of Pullman as its various 
changes passed before my eyes for a period of 
over one generation, and in that history to refer 
to the many splendid men and women with whom 
I gained an acquaintance which ripened into last- 
ing friendships. But that would be a story in 
itself, and is not properly a part of the story of 
One Hundred Years in Illinois. 

Among those who came to Pullman to engage 
in business were Wm. A. Briggs and Pratt Net- 
tleton, whom I may have influenced to come to 
the new industrial community from DuQuoin 
where we had all lived on very friendly terms. 
These men together opened a store in the Mar- 
ket House. Nettleton died a few years after com- 
ing to Chicago, and Mr. Briggs sold out the busi- 
ness and accepted employment with the Pullman 
Company, and is still with the Company, having 
grown gray in the service. It is a queer coinci- 
dence that the Briggses, the Nettletons, the Lees, 
the Fergusons, the Woods, the Henricks, Judge 
Fake and many others of us who were neighbors 
in Pullman in the old days, now live only short 

256 



SOME MEN OF PULLMAN 



distances apart on the South Side of Chicago, 
largely in the Hyde Park and Woodlawn dis- 
tricts. 

The man who followed in the footsteps of Eli 
Tourtelot, who succeeded him as paymaster, and 
who was later associated with him in business, 
was a bright young Irishman of the name of 
Hopkins. He began in a modest capacity, as did 
Tourtelot, and worked up to the position of pay- 
master. While occupying that position, I called 
upon him one day to tell him what I had observed 
in the home of one of the workmen who had 
become addicted to the liquor habit and who, 
through drunken indifference, was neglecting his 
family. Hopkins said he would go with me to 
see the conditions. He found them as I had 
represented, squalid in the extreme and pinched 
with poverty, although the man of the house 
earned enough to keep his wife and little ones 
in comfort, if not in luxury, if he had devoted 
his income to that purpose. The paymaster was 
visibly touched at the scene, but with a light of 
determination shining through his tears, he said, 
"I will attend to this case, Doctor." In a short 
time I noticed a decided air of improvement 
around the home, and meeting the paymaster soon 
thereafter, I observed that he must have used 
heroic treatment to get such marked results in 
such a short space of time, in reply to which he 
said to me: "Doctor, with the picture of that 

257 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

wife and her little ones in my mind, when I met 
that recreant husband I was so angry that I could 
not restain myself, and I gave him a good lick- 
ing. I knocked him flat, and when he got up I 
knocked him down again, and then I reasoned 
with him. He promised to reform, and I told 
him if he didn't that he was through in Pullman. 
I am mighty glad to hear from you that he is 
making good, for he certainly has it in him if he 
will leave booze alone." The man did make 
good, and his home became a veritable paradise 
for the family. 

The Irish lad? Oh yes! Well, that was the 
same John P. Hopkins who afterwards became 
Mayor of Chicago and one of the foremost cit- 
izens of our community. He and I never did 
agree in politics, he being as uncompromising a 
Democrat as I was a Republican, but we became 
firm friends after that incident, and I have always 
since felt that I was honored in having the friend- 
ship of a man with a heart like his. He died in 
the early fall of 1918, a victim of the influenza 
epidemic, lamented by thousands. His death left 
with me a keen sense of a personal loss, due per- 
haps, to the fact that but a few days before he 
was stricken with his fatal malady he called upon 
me at my hotel, at which time we had a most en- 
joyable visit going over old times. Peace to his 
ashes. 

I have already made mention of the fact that 
258 



SOME MEN OF PULLMAN 



the first school in Pullman was opened in the 
building erected for the Rock Island depot, and 
that D. R. Martin was the first teacher in Pull- 
man. As the school grew and additional teachers 
were added, Mr. Martin remained at the head of 
our educational institution. When the school 
had grown to be of some consequence, and was 
housed in a new and somewhat pretentious build- 
ing, the Cook County Superintendent of Schools 
wanted us to remove Mr. Martin and appoint 
some one to be selected by the Superintendent. 
The reason assigned for the change was that our 
Principal had been outgrown, and that we needed 
a man with more advanced ideas. My answer as 
President of the Board to the County Superin- 
tendent was that we had found Mr. Martin very 
satisfactory; that he had the necessary legal au- 
thority to teach, having a teacher's certificate is- 
sued by the Cook County Superintendent of 
Schools; and that when it occurred to us that 
he was unequal to his task we would ourselves 
select his successor. That ended the incident. 
Time has amply confirmed our judgment of Mar- 
tin, for he is to this day the honored and efficient 
Principal of the Pullman public school. In the 
holocaust at the old Iroquois Theater in Chicago 
on December 30, 1903, Mr. and Mrs. Martin suf- 
fered the appalling loss of two bright boys, their 
only children at that time, in the frightful fire 
in which 575 persons lost their lives. 

259 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

Many men prominent in the industrial and 
political life of Chicago were at earlier periods 
in their lives connected with the Pullman Com- 
pany. Those of this rather large class whose 
names occur to me as this is written are the fol- 
lowing : 

Alexander Harper, at one time accountant and 
time keeper for the Company the position held 
in the early days by Eli C. Tourtelot and John 
P. Hopkins is now the head of an accounting 
concern of his own. 

J. H. Lucas began as a clerk in the Account- 
ant's office in 1890, and gradually rose to the posi- 
tion of Chief Clerk to the Manager, and is now 
Superintendent of Water Pipe Extension of the 
City of Chicago. 

One of the skilled mechanics who became con- 
nected with the Company in the early days of 
Pullman was W. E. Aurelius, a Welshman, who 
went into the shops as a roller. Mr. Aurelius 
has retired from active service, and is enjoying a 
well earned rest, surrounded by a splendid family 
which he has reared. One of the boys, Bert, fol- 
lowed in the footsteps of his father, which the 
father explained to me was against the latter's wish, 
as he regarded the work as rather rough for a 
lad of today; but the lad had the right kind of 
stuff in him, with the natural result that he has 
steadily risen until he is a boss in the steel mills 
in South Chicago. Another son, Marcus, is Vice- 

260 



SOME MEN OF PULLMAN 



President of the Pullman Trust & Savings Bank, 
which fact speaks for itself. 

Another gentleman whom it was a pleasure to 
entertain as a guest of our home on many delight- 
ful occasions was William Anderson, affection- 
ately greeted as "Billy" by a large circle of 
friends. I remember him first as a gang boss in 
the wood machine shop, of which he later became 
foreman, and finished his service with the Com- 
pany as Foreman of the Lumber Yard. He is 
now, I believe, the western representative of the 
Pantasote Company, which produces imitation 
leathers, and he lives in the new residential dis- 
trict south of Jackson Park known as the Jack- 
son Park Highlands. 

Fred Farr began as a worker on a wood ma- 
chine in the same department as Anderson. He 
is now engaged in business for himself with the 
firm of Farr Bros. & Co., contractors and dealers 
in contractor's materials. 

Charles J. Nash started as a clerk and worked 
up to the important position of Estimating En- 
gineer for the Company. He is now the active 
head of the Nash Supply Company, dealers in 
railway supplies. 

Harry Morton also started in a humble posi- 
tion as clerk and worked up to the position of 
Chief Clerk to the General Manager. He is now 
the Vice President of the Dunbar Manufactur- 
ing Company, makers of stamped steel products, 

261 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

of which concern Thomas Dunbar, former Su- 
perintendent of the Shops, is President. 

In the palmy days of Pullman as a social cen- 
ter, the beautiful Hotel Florence, named for the 
daughter of George M. Pullman who is now the 
first lady of Illinois, was a mecca for epicures, 
the cuisine at that time being in charge of Charles 
G. Moore. Tempora Mutantur! Following the 
general trend of the migration from Pullman, I 
am now living in the Hyde Park district at the 
Hotel Windermere, the genial and well-known 
proprietor of which is none other than the gen- 
tleman of other days whose art I have attested 
and tasted at many .a festal board. It was this, 
perhaps more than any other one thing, which led 
me to take up my permanent residence there 
after withdrawing from active practice and quit- 
ting the post as head surgeon for the Pullman 
Company, a position which I held for a period 
of thirty-three years or a year longer than a 
generation. 

A great many things happened in my career in 
Pullman which might interest my readers, but I 
haven't the space to indulge the almost irre- 
sistible desire to sketch my professional experi- 
ences in that congenial field. I must, however, 
content myself with the brief statement that my 
work for the Company increased as the number 
of employees increased, until, when the number 
had reached 15,000, it was necessary to have as- 

262 



SOME MEN OF PULLMAN 



sistance to take care of the injured which on oc- 
casions ran as high as twenty-five in a single day. 
It should be a matter of general interest that 
prior to the inauguration by Mayor Thompson of 
the policy of closing the saloons of Chicago on 
Sunday there were a greater number of injuries 
resulting from accidents to take care of on Mon- 
day than on any other days of the week. Fol- 
lowing the Sunday closing order, Monday be- 
came the day of the least number of injuries re- 
sulting from "accidents" in the shops. The read- 
er may draw his or her own conclusions. 

During my long and steady employment as 
Company surgeon, I treated surgically approxi- 
mately thirty-five thousand cases of injuries re- 
sulting from accidents in the shops; and it is a 
source of gratification to me that the Company 
was never called upon to respond in damages on 
account of malpractice or neglect on my part. 
I realize there is an element of luck in that re- 
markable record, but, luck and all, it is a record 
that any practitioner would have a right to be 
proud of. And I am! 

It has been said, and in some instances with 
justification, that corporations are soulless and 
ungrateful ; that a man can spend himself and be 
spent in their service; and that when the day 
comes, as it must in the nature of things, that he 
must lay down his active work, that he will then 
be thrown out without ceremony. I must chal- 

263 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 



lenge this indiscriminate indictment, because I 
am here to bear witness that it is not always true. 
Here is what happened in my case: 

From the time of the organization of the town 
of Pullman, I attended faithfully to my work as 
head surgeon of the Company, never allowing 
anything to interfere with my duties. The policy 
of keeping open house to our friends brought an 
endless procession of welcome visitors to our 
home, and through this delightful social intercourse 
we had no time to grow rusty or acquire melan- 
choly. In this way thirty-one years sped by, at the 
end of which time my good wife succumbed to an 
illness which had kept her an invalid for the last 
few years of her life. Even in spite of the ap- 
proaching shadow, she remained cheerful and 
hopeful, extending radiant hospitality to our 
friends who came to see us. Of course, the home 
was never the same after she was taken away, 
and I soon noted the development of an indiffer- 
ence, if not a positive dislike, for the work which 
had been so interesting and absorbing. 

Under these circumstances, I was called to the 
office of the President of the Company, Mr. John 
S. Runnells, who greeted me cordially, and then 
said to me in substance: "Doctor, you have 
been a faithful employee of the Pullman Com- 
pany for a great many years. You were appointed 
by Mr. Pullman himself, and served with dis- 
tinction throughout his administration of the 

264 



SOME MEN OF PULLMAN 



affairs of the Company and also throughout the 
administration of my distinguished predecessor, 
Robert T. Lincoln. You are getting old; you 
should not have the responsibility and cares of a 
surgeon resting on your shoulders, so the Com- 
pany has decided to relieve you at an early date 
to be fixed by you. Let me add, however, that 
in appreciation of your splendid services of 
thirty-three years to this Company it has been 
decided to retire you on full pay with leave to 
spend your declining years wherever and however 
you may choose, filled with pleasant recollections 
of a well-spent life." 



265 



CHAPTER XXIX 
JUST MEMORIES 

In 1884, I was appointed on a reception com- 
mittee to meet James G. Elaine and John A. 
Logan, the Republican candidates for President 
and Vice President, on the occasion of their visit 
to Chicago in the campaign of that year. I had 
known General Logan for many years, having 
lived in the Congressional District in southern 
Illinois which he represented in Congress and 
having been in service with him in the Union 
Army in the campaigns at Forts Henry and Don- 
elson, in which he was severely wounded. On 
arrival at the hotel where the committee was to 
foregather, I was approached by Professor David 
Swing, who in his day occupied a place in the 
religious life of Chicago such as that now occu- 
pied by Doctor Gunsaulus. Originally, Swing 
was a Presbyterian, but he became unpopular 
with his sect through his inclination to think for 
himself and to talk as he thought, and he was 
placed on trial for heresy. Although vindicated 
in this process of dry-cleaning, he resigned from 
the synod and established a church for himself 
in Central Music Hall, where he preached to the 
largest congregation in Chicago. Professor Swing 
was also on the reception committee, and while we 

266 



JUST MEMORIES 



waited for the others to arrive, he entertained 
me with a rapid fire of conversation in which he 
told the following story which I have always 
remembered on account of its incompleteness. It 
was as follows: 

"One day, while riding in a passenger train, a man 
came and sat down in the seat with me, inquiring 
if I were a minister of the Gospel. When I stated 
that I was, he told me he was in trouble and 
wanted me to advise him what to do, in answer to 
which I assured him that I would gladly aid him if I 
could. 

" 'Well,' he said, 'I am a doctor and have established 
a splendid business in a neighborhood near a railway 
terminal, through which I get considerable practice. 
More than that, the president of the railroad is the 
father of the girl that I expect to marry. One night 
the ambulance stopped outside my office, and a man 
was carried in whose leg had been crushed in a rail- 
way accident. The nature of the injury indicated 
that the leg would have to be amputated. As I was 
preparing to perform the amputation, I was horrified 
to discover that my patient was none other than my 
prospective father-in-law. This fact so perturbed and 
unnerved me that I became confused and amputated 
the wrong leg. What shall I do?' " 

"While I was struggling with his problem, the train 
came to a stop, and my companion got off. When the 
train was leaving the station, the conductor came to 
me and inquired, 'Did you know that gentleman who 
sat down by you, Doctor?' I said, 'No; I never met 
him before.' 'Well,' he replied, 'you will then doubt- 
less be interested to know that he is the most no- 
torious gambler in Chicago.' " 
267 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

While Elaine and Logan were in Chicago, I 
went to their hotel to talk over old times with the 
General. In the ante-room of their suite, I found 
Mrs. Logan, apparently not in a tranquil frame 
of mind. When I inquired what was bothering 
her she said that John and Elaine were having 
a misunderstanding. When I saw General Logan, 
he explained to me that Elaine was determined to 
go back East, and that Logan felt that Elaine 
could do more good in the West. Elaine followed 
his own inclination, went back to New York, 
attended the celebrated meeting at which Doctor 
Burchard was the chairman and used the famous 
phrase, "Rum, Romanism and Rebellion," and 
through that lost the Presidency. Had the coun- 
sels of Logan prevailed, the current of history 
would have been changed. 

The general movement of the early population 
of Pullman toward Chicago was encouraged by 
the suburban train service which was established 
by the Illinois Central Railroad during the 
World's Fair in 1893 and continued by them after 
the Fair closed. Coming at a time when the ap- 
proaching disintegration and consequent dimin- 
ishing attraction of Pullman as a place of resi- 
dence, the steadily increasing attraction of the 
residence districts of Hyde Park and Woodlawn 
adjacent to Jackson Park, and the transportation 
Facilities enjoyed by those districts, consisting 
of the Illinois Central suburban service, and the 

268 



JUST MEMORIES 



newly constructed "Alley L," or South Side Ele- 
vated Line, combined to attract many of our most 
desirable people into that new neighborhood, as 
it offered an ideal location to those who wanted 
to be "nearer town" and at the same time con- 
venient to their business or employment in Pull- 
man. 

So when in the course of time I moved away 
from Pullman, it was only natural that I should 
follow that migration into the district where so 
many old friends now reside. The location of the 
Windermere Hotel across the street from Jack- 
son Park, in which the World's Fair was held, 
and but a few steps from an Illinois Central su- 
burban station, lend to its attractiveness as a place 
of residence. Living there has brought me into 
delightful association with some of Chicago's 
most celebrated personages. For instance, Con- 
gressman James R. Mann and wife live there 
while in Chicago. "Jim" was Alderman of our 
ward when Pullman came into Chicago, and a 
brother of his worked for the company many 
years. Of course, we are all "pulling" for him in 
the contest for the Speakership of the National 
House of Representatives, a distinction he has 
earned through his distinguished services to his 
party and his Government. Success to "Our Jim !" 
Another frequent guest is Federal Judge Kenesaw 
Mountain Landis, so named on account of his birth 
on, or near, the day of the battle of Kenesaw 

269 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

Mountain in the Civil War, in which his father 
participated. Judge Landis now takes pardon- 
able pride in referring to himself as the father 
of Captain Reed Landis, an "American Ace" of 
your Uncle Sam's flying squadron in France. An- 
other resident at the Hotel is Dr. Emanuel Friend, 
a prominent physician on the staff of the Michael 
Reese Hospital. Another is former Judge George 
Trude, a distinguished member of the Chicago 
bar. And so I might go on indefinitely, cataloging 
those who make up our delightful family at the 
Windermere. 

My room in the hotel overlooks Jackson Park, 
where the greatest of all world's fairs was held in 
1893. The magnificent Art Palace of the Fair, 
erected as a permanent structure, is still standing 
but a short distance from the hotel, a stately re- 
minder of the glories of the great exposition. A 
little further beyond the Art Palace is the per- 
manent structure erected by Germany for use as 
the German Building during the Fair, and which 
was presented to Chicago at the close of the ex- 
position by the German Government as a testi- 
monial of her friendship and good will. On ac- 
count of our recent unpleasantness with Germany 
the building has been referred to of late as the 
Liberty Building. Still over beyond this is the 
replica of the Convent of La Rabida in Spain, 
where the messenger from Queen Isabella over- 
took Columbus to inform him that he had been 

270 



JUST MEMORIES 

commissioned to go on his desired voyage of dis- 
covery. Outside of these landmarks there are few 
reminders of the Fair left; but in memory, I can 
see it just as it was a veritable Dream City the 
like of which for setting and for architectural 
grace and beauty and arrangement will never 
again greet the eyes of man. 

This reminds me of an experience I had on the 
day on which the great show was formally closed 
to the public. I was on the grounds to feast my 
eyes for the last time on the wonders there 
wrought by man, when I came across former 
Governor Richard J. Oglesby with a party of 
friends, among whom I remember General James 
Martin. "Well, Uncle Dick," I said, "I hardly ex- 
pected the pleasure of meeting you here today." 
"Yes, Doctor," he replied, as the tears gathered 
in his eyes, "you know that I have spent many 
days in this wonderful place, and I could not 
forego the chance to come today to bid it good- 
bye forever, because you and I will never see its 
equal this side of the pearly gates, and" (with 
an outburst of enthusiasm) "d d if I believe we 
will see it there !" 

One day, during the Fair, I had a call from an 
old friend, William Storey, who had operated the 
St. Nicholas Hotel in DuQuoin in the old days, 
but who had gone to Waterloo, Iowa, to take 
charge of a hotel property there. He was in Chi- 
cago, he explained, to see the Fair, and asked 

271 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

me if I would undertake to start him right. I 
agreed to act as pilot, and arranged to meet him 
on the grounds in the middle of the day. We 
started on our tour of inspection with a ride on 
the intramural railway, an elevated traction line 
which ran around the grounds. In this way he 
got a well defined idea of the arrangement of the 
buildings, and the magnitude of the exposition. 
Then .we took a trip in wheel chairs down the 
Midway Plaisance (the present Midway extend- 
ing from Jackson Park to Washington Park), 
along which were then located miniature repro- 
ductions of foreign scenes such as "Old Vienna," 
the "Irish Village," and the "Streets of Cairo." 
Before the latter a dusky piper and a very active 
base-drummer wailed and whacked away at a 
strange mixture of Oriental and American mel- 
odies, the extremes being represented in the oft- 
repeated "Hootchy Kootchie" and "After the 
Ball." The "Hootchie" was introduced to Amer- 
ica through the Fair, but its "soulful" interpre- 
tation as rendered by the scantily clad, dusky 
maidens of the Nile had to be censored and toned 
down for representation to mixed audiences over 
here. 

We lunched in the German Village, and then 
took up a hurried tour of inspection through the 
large buildings which housed the machinery, agri- 
cultural, manufactures and fine arts exhibits, fin- 
ishing that portion of our tour with a trip through 

272 



JUST MEMORIES 



the spacious Art Palace, where the priceless art 
treasures of the world were on exhibition. We 
dined at the White Horse Inn, and evening com- 
ing on, I engaged the services of a Venetian gon- 
dolier to row us through the labyrinth of lagoons 
in the park. A full moon riding in the sky was 
partially obscured from time to time by light, 
fleecy clouds which floated across its face. The 
electrically lighted dome of the Administration 
Building was a blaze of glory and the pure-white, 
massive buildings with their countless bas-relief 
and mural decorations reflected the illumination 
of a million lights. Music, subdued and softened 
by distance, floated across the water to us, and lent 
its charm to the occasion ; and when we glided un- 
der a massive bridge into the basin just south of 
the Art Palace, where the celebrated McMonnies 
electrical fountain was spouting water of all the 
colors of the rainbow, the effect was marvelous 
and left my guest almost speechless. As we landed 
at the edge of the basin I said to Storey : "Well, 
Bill, you ought to have a pretty good general idea 
of the Fair by now so that you know just what 
portion you would like to view in detail." After 
a moment's reflection he replied: "Doc, I came 
here with the intention of staying several days, 
but I have determined not to do it, because I have 
in my mind as the result of our trip today and 
tonight the most beautiful picture I have ever 
seen. I do not wish to mar the picture or to efface 

273 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

it from my mind, but to preserve it, just as I have 
it, to my dying day." 

During the Fair I became acquainted with a 
young French officer who attended the Fair in 
an official capacity for his Government, and who 
was a guest in my home on many occasions. It 
was really enjoyable to hear his ejaculations of 
admiration and amazement at the wonders of 
the exposition. The big Auditorium Theater, at 
Wabash avenue and Congress street, was opened 
to the public the year of the Fair, and a historic 
extravaganza was staged there entitled "Amer- 
ica." Wishing to give my friend a new sensation 
as to the scale of magnitude on which Americans 
do things, I took him uptown to dinner one eve- 
ning, after which we attended the production of 
"America." I wish I were able to convey to the 
reader the succeeding expressions of awe and 
delight which were inspired in the captain as he 
devoured the details of the great theater with its 
artistic decorations and mammoth stage, and the 
progress of the play, in which more than a hun- 
dred people were engaged. 

It was one of the most enjoyable evenings I ever 
spent, and one which I delight in recalling be- 
cause of the subsequent career of the young 
French officer. Five years later he established 
on the White Nile in upper Africa the military 
post of Fashoda, the occupation of which by the 
French came near causing war between England 

274 



JUST MEMORIES 



and France. Lord Kitchener, in charge of Eng- 
lish forces operating in upper Africa, objected 
to the French occupation, but the threatened 
breach was happily averted through diplomacy, 
and the French eventually withdrew. My friend, 
Captain Marchand, who became General March- 
and, was killed in action in the European War. 
The news of his death seemed to me a personal 
loss ; and when he died France lost a gallant sol- 
dier and a most capable officer. 

In the year following the World's Fair the \/ 
great railway strike originated in the Pullman 
shops over the question of making it a "closed 
shop," or, of excluding from employment in the 
shops all of those who were not members of la- 
bor unions. The company contended for the 
right to employ help without reference to wheth- 
er the persons employed did nor did not belong 
to unions. The strike was taken up by union 
railway employees in the form of a "sympathetic 
strike," in which they refused to handle trains in 
which Pullman cars were hauled. Violence was 
resorted to in order to prevent others from taking 
the positions vacated by the strikers, and at- 
tempts were made to prevent, by force, the opera- 
tion of trains by persons taking the places of 
striking union trainmen. 

At this juncture, President Cleveland sent Fed- 
eral troops into Chicago to protect mail trains 
entering or leaving the city. John P. Altgeld, 

275 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

then Governor of Illinois, protested against the 
sending of Federal troops into the State unless 
requested by the Governor, claiming that it was 
an invasion of the sovereignty of the State, for 
the Federal Government, unsolicited, to send sol- 
diers into the State. In response to Governor 
Altgeld, President Cleveland made his celebrated 
answer that the contention of Governor Altgeld 
had been fought out and settled by the Civil War, 
and that consequently there was no need for a 
further discussion of the principle involved. 

While the strike was at its height, there was a 
little card party at my home one evening in which 
former Governor John L. Beveridge, Charles M. 
Hewitt, D. R. Martin and I participated. While 
absorbed in the game, Mrs. McLean came to the 
door in a state of nervous excitement, saying that 
sounds coming from Kensington, about half a 
mile from our house, indicated that a riot was in 
progress there. We left our card game, and 
stepped out onto the back porch to listen. We 
could hear plainly the shouts of an angry mob, 
and could see the reflection of a great fire which 
we judged was made by burning freight cars. 
Then came a loud explosion, indicating that the 
burning cars had been loaded with explosives, or 
that the mob was using dynamite. After listen- 
ing for a few minutes to the noises created by the 
riot and disorder, Governor Beveridge said, 
"Well, let's go back to our game. Those are not 

276 



JUST MEMORIES 



my cars that are being destroyed, and I presume 
that they don't belong to you gentlemen, either." 
So we resumed our play. 

Largely through the intervention of President 
Cleveland, which resulted in putting a stop to 
acts of violence, such as that just previously men- 
tioned, which acts were ignored or abetted by our 
then municipal and state authorities, the strike 
finally came to an end, with the understanding 
that the shops at Pullman were to be open to both 
union and non-union men on equal terms; and 
since that time this policy of an "open shop" has 
been consistently maintained. 

But the town of Pullman never was the same 
after the great strike! 



277 



CHAPTER XXX 
THE PULLMAN OF TODAY 

There is little semblance of the early glory of 
the model industrial community of the world in 
the modern industrial locality of the great City 
of Chicago which is still known as Pullman. 
The great Pullman shops are there; the library 
still flourishes as a fountain. of water in a dry 
land ; the bank continues to do business at the old 
stand, having become the stabilizing influence of 
the town in the generation in which its present 
head, Edward F. Bryant, has moulded its policies. 

In addition to these there is another institu- 
tion, new to the vicinity, the spirit of which 
harks back to the master builder whose dream of 
a model industrial city rose in steel and bricks 
and mortar on the shore of Lake Calumet. That 
new institution, with a purpose from the heart 
and brain of the man who conceived the model 
city which will carry on to generations yet un- 
born, is the Pullman Free School of Manual 
Training, endowed out of the bounty of George 
M. Pullman and opened to the children of the 
Pullman workmen in 1916. 

Provision for this school was made in the will 
278 



THE PULLMAN OF TODAY 



of Mr. Pullman, and it was left to the Board of 
Directors named therein to work out the plans 
for this lasting memorial. The original board 
consisted of Norman B. Ream, Robert T. Lincoln, 
John M. Clark, John S. Runnells, Frank O. Low- 
den, Charles E. Perkins and John J. Mitchell. 
Mr. Perkins died in 1903 and Mr. Ream in 1915; 
the former being succeeded by Mr. Chauncey 
Keep and the latter by Mr. James A. Patten. Mr. 
Clark died in 1918 and his successor has not yet 
been named. Mr. Duane Doty was the first sec- 
retary of the Board and served until his death 
in 1902. He was succeeded by Mr. Charles S. 
Sweet, who died in 1912. Since then, Mr. LeRoy 
Kramer, and Mr. E. S. Taylor have served in 
turn. 

In 1908, a tract of land of forty acres, including 
the territory between 109th and lllth streets and 
South Park avenue and Indiana avenue, was 
secured to serve as a campus for the future insti- 
tution. Governor Lowden, in his usual thorough 
way of doing things, secured the services of a 
prominent educator to make a study of similar 
institutions in this country and abroad, so that 
the most advanced ideas could be incorporated in 
the school. The person so employed was Dr. 
Laenas Gifford Weld, at that time dean of the 
graduate school of the State University of Iowa. 
He brought to his new position an educational 
experience ranging from that of a grade school 

279 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

teacher to that which he acquired as director of 
the engineering school of the University of Iowa. 

Mr. C. Frank Jobson, architect of the Pullman 
Company, made the plans for the buildings, and 
on September 26, 1914, the cornerstone of the 
main building was laid by Pullman Lowden (now 
Lieutenant Lowden, U. S. A.), son of Governor 
Lowden and only grandson of George M. Pull- 
man. I had the pleasure of being present on that 
auspicious occasion, at which Dr. Weld presided, 
and addresses were delivered by Colonel Frank 
O. Lowden, Thomas Dunbar and Theophilus 
Schmid. The school was formally dedicated 
September 30, 1915, on which occasion addresses 
were delivered by Colonel Lowden, President 
Harry Pratt Judson of the University of Chicago, 
President Frank W. Gunsaulus of the Armour 
Institute, and Dr. Weld. 

The purpose of the school is to furnish instruc- 
tion, not only in the ordinary branches of ele- 
mentary education, but to provide also specialized 
training in all the trades employed in the Pullman 
shops and in such other useful occupations as 
electrical construction and operation, plumbing, 
steam fitting, brick laying and other trades. 
Courses in domestic science, clothes making, 
fancy work, home decorating, graduate nursing 
and other subjects of interest to the home maker 
are available for the girls of the community. 
Children of the Pullman employees are admitted 

280 



THE PULLMAN OF TODAY 



to the school without charge, and at the end of 
the second year young men who so desire are 
given employment in their chosen trades in the 
Pullman Shops, thus identifying it with the 
great industrial plant created by Mr. Pullman. 
In the main corridor of the central building is a 
tablet bearing this inscription: 

George Mortimer Pullman 

founded this school that the children of 
those associated with him in the Town 
of Pullman and its enterprises might be 
trained in the ideals of clean living, good 
citizenship and industrial efficiency, 
which were his own inspiration and 
through which alone the workman may 
hope to attain his true development. 

MCMXVI. 

The Pullman Library was formally estab- 
lished on April 10, 1883, on which occasion the 
dedicatory address was delivered by Professor 
David Swing in the beautiful Arcade theater. 
The Library was opened in the quarters which it 
now occupies in the Arcade building, and, though 
standards have since changed, the original beauty 
of its setting is recalled by the rich woodwork, 
the stained glass skylights and the elegant but 
now obsolete fixtures with which the rooms are 

281 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

adorned. The Library was opened with five 
thousand volumes, a gift from Mr. Pullman. 

As heretofore stated, the first librarian was 
Mrs. Lucy Hall Fake and to her was entrusted 
the selection and arrangement of the books; 
though she was ably counseled and assisted by 
Mr. Duane Doty, formerly superintendent of the 
Chicago Public Schools and then Agent of the 
town of Pullman. Mrs. Fake retired from the 
library in 1889 and was succeeded on October 
1st of that year by Mrs. Charles B. Smith who 
served with distinguished faithfulness and suc- 
cess until September, 1897, when Miss Bertha 
Stewart Ludlam, the present librarian, was 
appointed. 

During the World's Fair in 1893, Pullman was 
visited by thousands of people from all parts of 
the world. The register of the Library, show- 
ing the names of those who have visited it, was 
enriched during that period by the autographs 
of many of the notable men of that time, and 
now constitutes one of the most valuable pos- 
sessions of the Library. 

Some years after the death of Mr. Pullman, 
when Mrs. Pullman had assumed the burden of 
its maintenance, the Library was placed under 
the supervision of a board of directors which has 
ever since conducted its affairs. I was honored 
with appointment on this board, on which I have 
since served. My present associates on the 

282 



THE PULLMAN OF TODAY 



board are Mr. Ellis Morris, Professor D. R. 
Martin, Miss Abigail Hunt, Miss Harriett Sayers, 
Dr. L. G. Weld, Mr. E. E. Thompson, Mr. Fred- 
erick Moerl, and Mr. James Wares. Miss Louise 
Vosburgh and Miss Grace Barbour, both of whom 
rendered long and faithful service as members 
of this board have been claimed by death. 

One of the men of Pullman whose friendship I 
cherish, and on whose wise counsel and advice I 
have many times depended is Mr. Edward F. 
Bryant, the President of The Pullman Trust & 
Savings Bank. Some time ago I requested him to 
furnish me with information relative to the 
prominent part which the bank has taken in the 
development of the town. His reply was of 
such interest to me that I asked and secured his 
permission to use it in my story for the benefit 
of others. With those parts eliminated which 
were purely personal, his sketch was as follows: 

"I came to Pullman from the Merchants' Loan 
and Trust Company of Chicago in 1886, and am still 
here at Pullman as President of The Pullman Trust 
& Savings Bank. 

"It has been stated that, generally speaking, busi- 
ness and social conditions change at the end of every 
generation or about every twenty years; and the con- 
trast between conditions at Pullman in 1887, shortly 
after the town was built, and in 1907 and thereafter, 
is very marked. Mr. Pullman conceived and carried 
into execution his idea of an industrial town as a 
philanthropic proposition, and at the end of twenty 
283 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

years it was found impossible to reconcile a strictly 
business enterprise conducted by an incorporated 
company with the administration of the Town of 
Pullman. 

"Under the mandates of the courts we sold at The 
Pullman Trust & Savings Bank during the summer 
of 1907, for about two million dollars, property that 
cost the Pullman Company over four million dollars, 
giving the preference of purchase to the occupants of 
the houses at the time of the sale. 

"The restriction as to the use of the houses sold 
for residential purposes only, expired during the 
next succeeding ten years, and gradually through- 
out the town different houses formerly occupied as 
dwellings have been remodeled into stores, so that 
the business of dry goods, meats, groceries, drugs, 
etc., is no longer centralized in the large Arcade and 
the Market Hall, as it was prior to 1907. 

"The Pullman industries have developed tre- 
mendously beyond any possibilities contemplated by 
Mr. Pullman when he started the enterprise in 1880. 
Although over four thousand acres of land were in- 
volved in the purchases made by him, only about five 
hundred acres were set aside for the car shops and 
the houses of the town. With the immense develop- 
ment of industrial plants along Lake Michigan and 
Lake Calumet, from Chicago on the north to Gary, 
Ind., on the south, it is now obvious (particularly 
since the elevation of the tracks) that all the land 
east of the Illinois Central Railroad tracks, from 
103d street to 115th street, should have been re- 
served for industrial plants only, and that the entire 
residential portion of this district should have been 
located west of the Illinois Central tracks. 

"The conditions today, therefore, as compared with 
those of twenty years ago, is that the Pullman car 
284 



THE PULLMAN OF TODAY 



shops and other industries are congested, particularly 
at the narrow strip of land between the Illinois Cen- 
tral Railroad and Lake Calumet at 115th street, and 
that the great development of the business and resi- 
dential sections of the community has taken place a 
half mile west of the Town of Pullman, on Michigan 
avenue and in that immediate vicinity. 

"When I first came to Pullman, The Pullman Trust 
& Savings Bank, then known as The Pullman Loan & 
Savings Bank, was the only bank in this district 
Because of the inherent desire in all men to own their 
own homes and to pursue the happiness of life ac- 
cording to their own ideas, land was purchased by 
the Pullman employees for the erection of homes 
as near the car works as possible, which, however, 
was a half mile west of the Town of Pullman, as 
mentioned above. This has resulted in the estab- 
lishment of two good sized banks in that district, one 
of which, The Roseland State Savings Bank, is under 
the same management as The Pullman Trust & Sav- 
ings Bank. 

"The Pullman Trust & Savings Bank was incor- 
porated in 1883, and at the time I came here in 1886 
the savings deposits amounted to about $150,000. 
Just before the sale of the houses in the Town of 
Pullman in 1907 the savings had increased to $2,800,- 
000, and at the present time they total about $2,300,- 
000. The savings deposits at the other two banks 
amount to about $750,000, so that at the end of thirty 
years the savings deposits of employees in this dis- 
trict held by banks in this locality amount to about 
three million dollars. 

"In the '80s the Town of Pullman was a segregated 

community, having its own form of government, its 

municipal functions being under the direction of the 

Agent of the Town of Pullman. Today the Town of 

285 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

Pullman is simply a locality, such as "Kenwood" or 
"Hyde Park," and territorially but a small part of the 
Ninth Ward of the City of Chicago. 

"Generally speaking, about fifty per cent of the in- 
dustrial population are what are usually termed 
'Americans/ and the other fifty per cent includes 
people from nearly every country under the sun.- 

"Having been here since 1886, I have a good rec- 
ollection of the "sympathetic strike" of 1887 and the 
great "Pullman strike" of 1894, and am fairly familiar 
with what few labor disturbances we have had; and, 
on the whole, I believe this has been one of the best 
industrial communities of the whole country, and the 
conditions of safety much greater here than might 
be expected." 

The profound change which time has wrought 
in the life of Pullman is well illustrated in my 
own case. My surgical laboratory was built onto 
my home, which was located on the corner of 
Stephenson and lllth streets, in what was known 
in the early days as "officers row," just across 
from the big gate of the car works. The location 
was found very convenient for the surgical 
treatment of employees injured in the shops, and 
while there I performed about 35,000 operations, 
minor and major. When I left Pullman, I did 
not desire to have the bother of looking after my 
residence property there, so I arranged through 
the bank to sell it to a thrifty Italian. The little 
lawn around the house, which Mrs. McLean kept 
bright and cheerful with growing flowers and 
plants, was soon put into tune with the com- 

286 



THE PULLMAN OF TODAY 



mercial aspect surrounding it by the erection of 
a small building to be used as a store, from which 
the owner vended his wares to the men as they 
entered and left through the big gate. The 
Company now maintains a medical department 
consisting of a dispensary and hospital within 
the big enclosure, under the direction of Doctor 
Roy J. DeMotte, with an assistant surgeon and a 
nurse, where first aid is given those injured in 
the works. It is pleasant to reflect that I have 
been succeeded by an alumnus of my alma mater, 
Rush Medical College. Doctor DeMotte acquired 
his surgical experience as an interne in the Pres- 
byterian hospital, which is not far from Rush 
college. 

Having begun my story with an account of the 
achievements of the Scotch in America, it is 
fitting that I conclude with a specific illustration 
of the success of a Scotchman here, showing how 
America and Opportunity are synonymous, and 
how a man with the right stuff in him may carve 
out his own destiny in this great land of ours. 

Six or seven years after I settled in Pullman, 
a Scotchman who had been employed as a ship 
carpenter in the great yards along the river Clyde 
came to Pullman and went to work in the wood 
working department. Among his children was a 
boy then about ten years old, who began at once 
attending the school in Pullman from which he 
was graduated at the age of thirteen into the big 

287 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

shops, taking up the duties of material boy in the 
body building department. His close attention 
to his duties soon attracted the notice of his 
superiors, and he was taken into the general 
foreman's office as office boy. Learning that a 
position as stenographer was open, he qualified 
for the place by studying nights, and was shortly 
employed in the office of the general superintend- 
ent. From then on his promotions came with 
regularity, and he was in turn record clerk, chief 
clerk of the Calumet shops, mechanical inspector, 
assistant general foreman of the freight depart- 
ment, chief clerk in the engineer's office, assistant 
superintendent, until today, the boy from Dum- 
barton in Old Scotland, Francis Mackay Gunn, is 
superintendent of the great Pullman shops. 



288 



CHAPTER XXXI 
RETROSPECTION 

I have lived under all three of the constitutions 
of Illinois, adopted in 1818, 1848 and 1870. I have 
seen my country engaged in four wars, including 
the Mexican War, the Civil War, the War with 
Spain and the War with Germany. 

In my time our present educational system has 
been perfected and our great institutions of learn- 
ing have been constructed. The basic law of our 
present system was enacted by the Illinois legis- 
lature in 1855. Two years later the State Normal 
School was established at Bloomington. In 1867 
the University of Illinois was established. 

I have lived under the administration of twen- 
ty out of twenty-seven Presidents of the United 
States, and twenty out of twenty-five Governors 
of Illinois. 

The year in which I was born, Chicago was or- 
ganized as a city, and had a population of 4,149. 
Within the sphere of my life the city has grown 
to be the second in population on this continent 
and fifth in the world, with a population of nearly 
three million. 

When I was born, the people of Chicago hauled 
289 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

their drinking water from the lake ; now the water 
is delivered into the homes of our people by 
means of intakes built several miles out in the 
lake, beyond probability of contamination from 
the shore, and from where it is conducted through 
tunnels under the lake which connect these in- 
takes with the pumping stations on shore, whence 
it is pumped through 3,000 miles of water mains 
into the homes. 

When I was born, the most rapid means of land 
conveyance in Illinois was the stage coach drawn 
by horses. I have seen that succeeded by the 
steam locomotive, by the electric motor, by the 
automobile, and until now, when these terrestrial 
means have become too slow, man has taken to the 
air, like a bird, in his flying machine. I can 
travel further in an hour at eighty years of age 
than I could in a day as a boy. 

When I was born, the center of population was 
in West Virginia, not a great way from where my 
father was born. From there it has moved stead- 
ily westward until it is now in Illinois, not far 
from the place of my birth. 

When I was born, there was not a telegraph 
instrument in operation in America, and com- 
munication between Chicago and southern Illi- 
nois was a matter of several days and an event of 
great local importance, involving not only hard- 
ship and privation but a risk of life. Now mes- 
sages are flashed under the seas and over the earth 

290 



RETROSPECTION 



like lightning, the human element involved im- 
peding transmission to such an extent that it re- 
quires something like ten minutes to send a mes- 
sage around the world. 

I don't remember that my mother ever owned 
a sewing machine; at any rate, they were not in- 
vented until eight years after my birth. I was a 
young man of forty before the telephone came 
into use, and now there are something like a half 
million in use in the city in which I live, enabling 
me to talk to my friends at any time of the day; 
and, allowing a few minutes to make the required 
long distance connection, I can converse with 
them hundreds of miles away, no matter whether 
they be in New York, San Francisco or elsewhere 
in America. 

The first steel plow was produced by Harvey 
May, Knox County, in the year in which I was 
born, but it was not perfected until I was old 
enough to use one, and during my life I have 
witnessed the introduction of the mower, the 
reaper, the selfbinder, and all the other modern 
implements which render farming comparatively 
easy and much more profitable than it was to the 
pioneers. With these aids, the total output of 
our thirty-five million acres of farming lands has 
grown to a billion dollars' worth annually. Farm- 
ers of today, with these inventions at hand and 
with railroads everywhere, little realize the hard- 
ships endured by the early settlers, and little ap- 

291 



ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

predate what invention has done for those of 
these days. 

When one reflects that everything done by ma- 
chinery now was done by hand when I was a boy, 
it will give some idea of the primitive conditions 
which obtained in the days of long ago. I have 
lived in this state from the time that its people 
made everything they used and used everything 
they made, until now they make little of what 
they use and use only a little of what they make. 
It kept my mother busy at the spinning wheel and 
the loom and with her knitting in order to keep 
up with the requirements of her growing family. 
Our "manufacturers" of those days had no sur- 
plus to sell in the markets. Since that time Illi- 
nois has grown to the rank of third among the 
great manufacturing states, and we are now mak- 
ing in excess of our own needs and selling to 
others approximately three billion dollars' worth 
of goods every year. 

The meat packing industry was established in 
Chicago about the time of my birth, it being re- 
corded that about six thousand hogs were killed 
and dressed here in 1836, about all of which were 
for consumption here. Considered alone that 
seems to be a great many hogs, but compared with 
the annual killing and dressing of approximately 
four million hogs now in our Chicago stock 
yards it does not look so big. 

My parents thought they were living in an ad- 
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RETROSPECTION 



vanced age because friction matches were in- 
vented ten years before I was born, but the tallow 
dips they used for lights, if accepted as the in- 
dex of their advancement, were but puny at- 
tempts at illumination as compared to the 100 
candle power mazda electric bulb which floods 
my apartment with light when I touch the little 
button on the wall. How well I remember the old 
fireplace, with its andirons and crane, and which 
on a winter's evening served the three-fold re- 
quirement of a heating plant, lighting plant and a 
place to do the family cooking. "Among the 
beautiful pictures that hang on memory's wall," 
is one of that old fireplace with the back log 
smoldering in its place; with the flames dancing 
and leaping up the spacious black throat of the 
wide stone chimney; with the haunch of venison 
or a wild turkey turning to a rich brown on the 
spit ; with the potatoes roasting in the hot ashes ; 
with the daily bread of whole wheat baking in 
the crude oven near the fire, or the savory hoe- 
cake of corn meal turning to a golden brown while 
being literally toasted before the blaze ; with the 
teakettle singing merrily on the hearth; and, 
withal, the family in a semicircle, now advancing 
and now retreating with the varying intensity 
of heat thrown out from the burning logs, while 
from without old Boreas shook his hoary locks 
and vented his futile fury upon the solid walls 
which held this warmth and cheer. 

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ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

Ah ! those were happy days ; but our snug com- 
fort of that far away time would be considered 
hardship and privation by those of this day and 
generation. What a far cry it is from back logs 
to gas logs ; from tallow dip to electric light ; from 
ireplace to the modern heating plant regulated 
by thermostat; from our early crude methods of 
cooking to the modern gas range; from our bed- 
tick filled with clean, sweet straw to box springs 
and hair mattress; from the morning dip in cold 
water after breaking a crust of ice which had 
formed overnight on the water in the pail, to our 
present bathing facilities including plenty of 
warm water ; from our homespun, homemade gar- 
ments of the same cloth and same pattern, to the 
modern retail store with its never ending variety 
of materials, colors and fashions; and from the 
clumsy, creaking, ox-drawn wagon or "prairie 
schooner" to the simple elegance of the Pullman 
sleeper or the conveniences and speed of the auto- 
mobile. 

was born in the first year of the administration 
of President Martin Van Buren, a Democrat, and 
after eighty years I find myself living under the 
administration of Woodrow Wilson, a Democrat. 
In the meantime, I have seen political parties 
spring up, flourish for a while and then pass into 
history unwept, unhonored and unsung, much the 
same as the boy's comment on his father's death 
who, when asked what the complaint was, an- 

294 



RETROSPECTION 



swered, "There was no complaint; everybody 
seemed satisfied." 

The only thing in common between the Dem- 
ocrat party of Van Buren and the Democrat party 
of Wilson is the name. That is the only thing 
about the party that endures, and that endures, I 
am persuaded, because of its demagogic flavor 
which signifies that it is a party of the people. In 
1837, the Democrat party stood for a strict inter- 
pretation of the Constitution which would pre- 
vent the Federal Government from interfering in 
the ordinary affairs and business of the citizens 
of the several states; in 1918, the Democrat party 
stood for a liberal interpretation of the Constitu- 
tion which permits the Federal Government not 
only to regulate the ordinary affairs and business 
of the citizens of the several states, but to com- 
mandeer their businesses for state purposes. The 
boast of Van Buren was that he took the Govern- 
ment out of the banking business; the boast of 
Wilson is that he put the Government into the 
banking business through the Federal Reserve 
Banks. Tempora mutantur! I may be biased in 
my judgment, but it seems to me that one prin- 
ciple of the Republican party the eternal prin- 
ciple of human liberty on which it was founded 
meant more to humanity than all of the contradic- 
tory things the Democrat party has advocated 
since Jefferson gave it the name. That is the rea- 
son why I have remained steadfastly a Republi- 

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ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

can in politics since first hearing Abraham Lin- 
coln debate with Stephen A. Douglas at Jones- 
boro, Illinois. 

Within my time religion has been humanized. 
When I was a boy, we were taught that God was 
an all-powerful, inexorable, implacable Being 
seeking whom he might devour ; that He peopled 
the earth with frail human beings, surrounded 
them or allowed them to be surrounded by tempta- 
tions, and consigned those who were weak enough 
to fall before these temptations to eternal suffer- 
ing in lakes of fire and brimstone for falling into 
the snares set for them. Now we are taught that 
our Heavenly Father is the soul of compassion 
and that He watches over us with infinite love 
and tenderness, and notes our transgressions with 
sorrow not malice "even as a father pitieth his 
children." Without intending irreverence, it 
may be said that the God of today is more respect- 
able than the one which my ancestors worshipped. 
That is only another way of stating an obvious 
conclusion that as we become more civilized and 
more enlightened, our conception of everything, 
including Deity, is on a higher plane. 

A doctor's professional experience breeds a 
contempt for the old superstitions, and particular- 
ly for that one which had Providence taking an 
active interest in the trivial affairs of man, with 
a specific object in view of the damnation or sal- 
vation of the individual. It was a popular notion 

296 



RETROSPECTION 



in my younger days among religiously inclined 
persons that death, sickness, and even pure ac- 
cidents, revealed a visitation from God as a pun- 
ishment for some unrelated moral offense. 

Through conscientious preparation for the 
practice of my chosen profession, I came to learn 
that man is surrounded by conditions over which 
he has no control and can exert no influence, and 
that his birth, his life and his death are governed 
by natural laws which he can not change or mod- 
ify, and to which he must conform or pay for his 
transgression. These laws operate twenty-four 
hours a day, seven days a week, year in and out 
for all time, and, like the laws of the Medes and 
the Persians, they changeth not. They are the 
earthly edition of the law universal, under which 
the sun, the moon, the stars and the heavenly 
bodies move in their several orbits, and punish- 
ment follows a violation of that law, as effect fol- 
lows cause, with unfailing certainty. Within 
these boundaries man has his comfort and his wel- 
fare largely in his own hands, the brain acting as 
the engineer of a machine which should last a 
long time, barring accidents. 

Conforming to these laws as best I could, I 
have been rewarded with lease of life much longer 
than the average individual, having completed 
more than four score years of existence. These 
have been years which brought happiness and 
contentment, there being just enough in the way 

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ONE HUNDRED YEARS IN ILLINOIS 

of sorrow and disappointment to give a just ap- 
preciation of the good. Many of these years I 
have enjoyed in my noble profession, the purpose 
of which is to alleviate physical suffering and dis- 
tress and to aid Nature in repairing injuries to 
the human machine. I have always tried to put 
as much into life as I took out of it, and have en- 
deavored to deal fairly and squarely with my f el- 
lowmen, in order that I might have their good 
opinion and good will. In a letter which I re- 
ceived not long ago from a distinguished friend 
mentioned in my story, he was good enough to 
express this sentiment: "It has been stated that 
each epoch of a man's life has its own rewards and 
compensations, and you now have the compensa- 
tion of retrospection over what has gone before 
a long and useful life." 

I think I may say, without boasting, "yes ; that 
is true." 



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SERSITYOFILLINOIS-UKBANA 



C001 



KNORED YEARS IN ILLINOIS CHICAGO